Chicken bones and cranberries

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The Gray Moors

When Jack and Lisa woke up, the sun hung dangerously low, barely looking over the horizon. Eddie was nowhere around. “Now, look, what we have done! We have wasted a day!” cried Jack.
Jack and Lisa called for Eddie time and time again, all in vain. Then, in haste, they put on the backpacks and hurried on. The children marched through the ancient forest as it grew darker and darker, until a starless night swaddled the Earth with a murky blanket, making it impossible for them to continue.
It became colder and spookier in the forest with every minute. Stepping very carefully, the children made it to a large tree and sat down underneath it, holding each other tightly. Creepy sounds of screeching and sighing surrounded them.
Lisa began to sob. “How are we going to find Eddie here?” she asked. “We will look for him as soon as the sun goes up,” replied Jack. “But now we must wait.”
The children were sitting in complete darkness. Suddenly, Lisa spotted a green light.
“Look, Jack! There is a light! You see, right there!”
The children tried walking toward the light, blindly stumbling upon stumps and windy roots. Much to their dismay, the light disappeared as suddenly as it came about. Then, another one lit up, just yards away from the first one. The children kept walking. They saw the third light, and the fourth. Soon, the air around them was filled with little green and yellow orbs of light. At the same time, the children’s feet started sinking into something very slimy and sticky. They realized that they walked into a swamp. Turning back was of no use; surrounded by the muggy swamp, all they could see in the darkness were the orbs of light that twinkled around them. Foxfire[1]!
Jack was holding Lisa’s hand very tightly when he began to sink. As soon as the boy realized that the swamp was sucking him in, he let go of his sister’s hand. “Lisa, I am sinking! Get away, try to get back to the tree!” he yelled. But Lisa would not let go of him.
The killer swamp was slurping the children in, pulling them down slowly but surely. There were no trees or even bushes nearby, there was no hope. For a moment, Jack started to believe that their journey had come to an end, but, unexpectedly, a large hand grabbed him by his shirt’s collar, and pulled up. Miraculously, Jack was saved! Or so he thought. Now he was hanging off a shoulder of a very tall man, while Lisa was on the other shoulder.
But was it really a man? Strong, hairy, and so smelly that the children were almost fainting, it was the Forest Stomper, who rescued them.



[1] Foxfire: the phosphorescent light coming from decaying wood in a swamp.

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