The hunter and the prey Prose in The Call of The Tree | World Anvil

The hunter and the prey

For the last few days, something has been walking through the woods near my home. I've seen its tracks and I still don't know what it is. As I could see more and more animal corpses lying everywhere I knew I had to do something. Otherwise, one day I could be next.
  So I took my hunting rifle and left my house.   Just like for the past few days, the signs of the presence of the creature have been easy to find. Broken branches, freshly scattered soil, and those tracks. They were similar to those of a deer, but something was wrong. They were too big, too long. And had fingers.   They led to the nearby pond, a place where many animals would sate their thirst. It was a good place for an ambush.   I made some simple traps in a few spots and hid in the bushes, watching from the distance.   A few hours have passed before something showed up. It was a small doe. Somehow, it avoided all of my traps and started drinking water.
That's when I had an idea. What if I used its corpse as a bait for the beast?   I readied my rifle, looked through the scope, and held my breath.   The animal fell.   I had to act quick, hoping that the beast was far away and the shot didn't scare it off.   A few steps from the doe I noticed something weird about it. Its flesh wasn't covered by fur and instead had was a skin that was covered with markings similar to that of a normal doe. And there was a flesh-like, long growth on its legs leading to the bushes nearby.   I heard a growl.   How could I be such a fool?   It was bait.

Cover image: Call of the Tree by Revyera


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