A Warrior's Redemption (The Warrior Kind) (Chapter Six - Campfire, page 1 of 10)

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Two days later the Litian River lay just ahead of us. Just as darkness was looming dense we drew up alongside of the river. The river was in flood stage caused by snow melt from up in the higher peaks of the mountains. Flin started nudging forward toward the river eager for the challenge. "Whoa Boy!" I said, drawing back on the reins as I looked across the river to what lay beyond.

This was as close as I had ever come to my ancestral home. The land that lay beyond was completely foreign to me, but yet it seemed familiar in some intangible way as if I had been here before. What lay beyond this point I did not know, but I felt a sense of excitement welling up inside of me at the possibilities.

"Let's go Flin."

Flin released his tensed up muscles and we fairly lunged into the fast moving current of the river. The icy cold water took my breath away, as it rose quickly to my waist. Flin was a powerful swimmer and swam hard against the current to reach the other side. The current must have taken us a hundred yards or so downriver, when I felt Flin's hooves dig into the opposite bank of the river and we started to climb up and out of the icy water. Having gained a purchase on solid ground Flin broke into a gallop invigorated by the cold water and a general lust for life and adventure. Holding on tightly enjoying the strength of the stallion beneath me I grinned sharing in the sentiment of the moment and let Flin run all out across the plain towards the majestic mountains rising up before us.

As tall shadows began to form the sense of being watched began to form as well. Several times I drew Flin up and paused to survey my backtrail, but I saw nothing there to cause alarm. There did not seem to be anything out there, but me. Never the less the feeling of being watched continued.

The feeling reminded me of an experience I'd had as a boy, when I had been but eight years old. I was coming home through a wooded glen near our home. My mother had sent me to our neighbor's place further down the valley, with an herbal tea that had been needed to cure one of their little girl's bad late spring coughs. I had stayed longer than I should have since the girl was quite pretty and had seemed very interested in my company. Not too many people ever seemed interested in having me around except maybe my mother so I had stayed soaking up the freely given attention.

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