The Hopeful Wanderer – Preservation Efforts

Without a breath of air to stir them, a plume of snowflakes rose up from the drifts coating the mountainside. Where the morning sunlight had not yet touched, deep blue shadows crept beneath a forest of firs. Nothing moved but the flurry of flakes, whirling around each other, the whole cluster angling upward along the mountain’s flank.

I crouched behind a screen of snow-heavy tree limbs, a tiny encampment from which I had not shifted all night. My legs hurt and snow soaked through the knees of my pants. Cold nipped at my lips. My breath fogged white, then gold, sparkling where the sunlight had just glanced over my shoulder, lancing between the trees down the mountain in a wide ray.

My breathing stopped. In the revealing light, the mysterious plume of snowflakes passing by my hiding place had resolved into a shape. Gold glimmered along the faint outline of a delicate creature – a long low body, tufted ears perked in my direction, pointed nose twitching for scent, one of four paws raised in consideration. Blinding white feathery wings folded along its back.

A breeze had lifted from my back, carrying my scent straight to the creature. All in a rush, it flapped those wings hard, scattering snow in every direction. The whoosh of wind threw flakes in my face, stinging my cheeks. Only four pawprints and the faint pattern of wings on the snow remained.

As well as one feather.

When I lifted the feather and moved it back and forth between shadow and light, it vanished in the darkness, though its icy touch stung my fingertips.

As promised to the people in the town below, hanging this at the community coop would at least deter any more of these creatures from stealing their chickens. That should appease the hunters.

Thanks for reading!

Subscribe to my list of readers who get new stories, sneak peeks, and book reviews delivered to their inboxes.

Summer’s Latest

Little Blue Marble 2022: Warmer Worlds

Featuring “I Hope This Email Does Not Find You!”

The last eight years have been the warmest on record.

Little Blue Marble‘s anthology of speculative climate fiction and poetry from an international slate of authors mourns and hopes in equal measure for the fate of our world and its ecosystems.

May these visions of the future inspire collective action before climate chaos becomes irreversible.


Show Your Support

If you enjoy my writing, please consider leaving a tip. All amounts welcome!

Photo by Greg Rosenke on Unsplash

4 thoughts on “The Hopeful Wanderer – Preservation Efforts

      1. You described it incredibly well! 🙂 Also, I have nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger Award for your amazing writing and character. Full details can be found on my latest blog post 💗 Good luck 🤞

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s