Fiction Saturday, Uncategorized

Katerina’s Journey

Katerina moved quickly through the woods, following the map Nona had given her.

“I need to find this tree, and soon!” she thought. ‘I can’t let Father down. Not again.”

It took Katerina nearly all day just to reach the first river on her map, and she was exhausted. She decided to stop under a Dara tree to eat a bit.

As she ate, Katerina stared out at the river. “It’s been a day already, so that means I need to at least find the tree tomorrow if I’m going to make it back in time.”

Suddenly at her shoulder, there was a soft sound. Katerina’s heart nearly stopped in fear. What was it? Slowly turning her head, she found herself face to face with a unicorn.

“Oh, hello!” she said softly, fear instantly gone. “Where did you come from?”

In reply, the unicorn gently nuzzled her face, tickling her with its whiskers.

Katerina pushed her bag off her lap and stood. “Are you lost? Where’s your owner?” she wondered. Then she saw the blue mane and tail, a distinction of wild unicorns. 

“Well, if you’re wild, then you certainly won’t let me ride you,” Katerina remarked, picking up her bag again. She was slightly disappointed. Having a unicorn to ride would have made the journey so much easier. She pulled out the map, trying to figure out the easiest and quickest way to get to the tree.

No matter how hard Katerina tried to leave, the unicorn kept following her. Finally, an exasperated Katerina turned around. “Do you want to come with me? Is that it?” She slowly reached her hand towards its nose. When the unicorn didn’t shy away, she moved closer. After letting the unicorn get used to her, Katerina mounted and rode towards the river once more, looking for a good place to sleep for the night. She didn’t realize that just a few yards away, two pairs of eyes were watching, scheming as to how to stop her.

The next morning, Katerina continued on her journey. By midafternoon, she reached the final obstacle on the map before the tree: a rushing, raging river that was nearly overflowing its banks.

Dismounting the unicorn, who she had named Bell, Katerina edged as close as she dared to the river, wondering how she was going to get across.

“I can even see the tree over there!” she sadly said to Bell. “I’m so close. But I can’t cross the river, so I guess I need to go the long way around.” She looked at where the sun was in the sky. “But I need to hurry.”

Seeing no way to possibly cross the river at this point, Katerina mounted, turned, and made her way downstream.

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