Leaving the camp, Patrick and Julie found the Salawa still on their heels. If the bones could not be broken and cuts not be made then how were they to escape from this thing? All they could was run.
“Just keep, running, just keep running just keep running.” That was what was going through both Patrick and Julie’s heads.
If the Salawa was truly a beast of Set then it would have not had any interest in chasing people with red hair, for the followers of Set were redheads. If it were a modern incarnation of Anubis then would it chase redheads? No, there was not quite a way to determine what the Salawa was but a very determined rabid dog would be possible if that possibility was not impossibly mundane. The only things that could be said about the Salawa were that there was nothing mundane about it and that was more determined than possible.
Even as they continued to run, Patrick and Julie began to tire. They had done much running at the highland when the Daeodon chased them. One would think they would be used to being chased. Unfortunately, they were not. A Daedon was one thing but a Salawa was something else. A figurative hog from hell was nothing compared to something from the paranormal was a thought that went through the couple’s head as they began to slow down.
Another step and the next thing Patrick and Julie knew was that they had fallen through the ground. On paper it would sound rather contrived. Patrick and Julie are running, the ground collapses from underneath them, they fall into a tunnel or something and then the Salawa loses interest in them.
They did not fall into a tunnel. They fell into a hole. The Salawa did not lose interest in them. It just stood at the top of the hole while extending its neck to try and bite one of them. Whoever it bit did not matter, the Salawa was out for blood and it cared little for the identity of whose blood it was.
“Well… I guess this is it for us.” Said Patrick.
“It might be.” Agreed Julie. “There is the fifty-fifty chance of someone like Zulu showing up to save the day but it looks like this is the end.” Given how their previous adventure was that seemed to be the case.
Sure enough, the sounds of footsteps came to the ears of all three. Large, loud footsteps! The next thing Patrick and Julie knew was that a Daeodon, the proverbial bigger fish, had appeared on the scene and was shaking the Salawa like a ragdoll. Out of the proverbial frying pan and into the fire.
The Salawa was dead. The Daeodon however? It turned its head to look into the hole, an impressive feat for something with such a small neck, and looked down into the whole that Patrick and Julie were trapped in and a strange look appeared in its eyes. A feeling of greater fear than when the Salawa had been chasing them soon overcame Patrick and Julie as they realized what that look was.
It was a look of recognition. As ludicrous as it would have sounded in a work of fiction, this was the same Daeodon that had chased them out of the highland the last time they were in Africa.
“You have got to be kidding me!” groaned Patrick, leaning against the wall of the hole in defeat. “Julie, since this thing is probably going to jump on down here any minute and kill us, I should ask…”
“Wait, Patrick, look!” Julie pointed at the Daeodon. Patrick looked and his eyes widened as it just lied down at the top of the hole, a waiting look in its eyes.
“Well, instead it is going to wait for us to climb out.” Said Patrick. “I’m not sure which is worse.”
“What were you going to say, Patrick?” asked Julie, herself sitting down.
“Nothing.” Patrick sat next to Julie, placing an arm around her. “Julie, listen we can’t stay in this hole forever so it would be better if I draw away its attention so you can get back to the camp.”
“Patrick, no. It is better that we wait for it to fall asleep and then sneak out. I love you and I’m not going to let you throw away your life when we both can live.” She gave him a kiss on the cheek, as soft and gentle as she was.
Thus did the wait begin! A half hour passed before the Daeodon finally fell asleep and Patrick and Julie finally found their chance to escape. Carefully climbing out of the hole, things seemed to be going well for them. They made it out of the hole without the Daeodon awaking.
And then things proverbially went south when a jackal howled.
Instinctively, Patrick and Julie started running as the Daeodon woke up. The Hog from Hell lifted its head in a confused manner, stared in the hole for a bit, closed its eyes, lowered its head… And then promptly opened its eyes upon realizing Patrick and Julie were no longer in the hole.