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White Oak & Black Cedar – Part I
The green depths of yore
I wander through the leafy grove, idling the time away. The scents of witchwood and wild rosemary fill my nostrils. I pause for a moment, my eye caught by a fleeting avian. I watch for a beat longer, captivated by windswept wings and a preternatural agility. I crouch down, crushing some of the warm, rich loam between my fingers.
I spin around, startled by the sharp report of a twig splintering underfoot. Casting my eyes over the glade of oak and cedar, I see nothing out of the ordinary. Puzzled, I sniff the air, trying to catch a whiff of some foreign scent. Nothing. My peaceful reverie shattered, I crouch, adopting a ready stance. I wonder how anyone could have found this place, and silently pray that I have merely disturbed a deer or timberwolf.
A blur; leaping
I feel my feet being swept from under me, the air forced out of my lungs. I fall towards the ground, twisting my body in readiness for contact with the earth I love so much.
A flash of silver
The cold hiss of steel…
The blade is no more than a blur. I toss myself backwards, narrowly avoiding its wickedly curved edge. I spring to my feet and lash out with an open-handed strike, seeking to render the shadowy figure unconscious. Taken aback by my speedy response he retreats, his fury dimming somewhat. I look up, hoping to reveal the identity of my mysterious assailant. I gaze into a mass of shadows, seemingly formless, yet possessing a humanoid silhouette. Fearful I leap back, observing that my blow had no discernable effect. The Grey Mass pounces again, and I roll to the left whilst hurriedly drawing my own blade. I ready my weapon and glance up…
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