Chicken bones and cranberries

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On the way to the idol

Eddie the werewolf and his new friend, the forest ranger, were moving through the ancient forest quite swiftly. The werewolf was a robust[1] creature, his magical necklace only made him stronger. The forest ranger was malnourished[2] and weak, but he was delighted with the sense of long-forgotten freedom and that gave him strength to quickly follow the werewolf. The ranger looked around his forest, once dear and very familiar. He could recognize some of the places, but the trees were older and larger now, many clearings had berry bushes grown on them. The ranger’s favorite little brook had dried; things have really changed in ten years.
When the two finally approached the cabin, the ranger shouted with joy and quickened his pace. Eddie, too, ran to the stump where he left the athame. To his horror, Eddie discovered that someone had pulled the athame out of the stump, leaving him no chance to turn back into a boy. The werewolf howled in desperation and bitter tears began to flow down his shaggy muzzle.
The ranger did not have a clue about Eddie’s pain. He patted the werewolf gently and said: “I will miss you too, guy!” Then the ranger walked away.
As soon as the ranger got inside his cabin, he dropped onto his old bed and fell fast asleep.
The werewolf let out an anxious howl and lowered himself, looking at the emerald grass around the cursed stump. His nose caught a familiar whiff. Eddie got back up and smelled again, carefully. Yes, it did smell like the witch. It also smelled like his friends: Jack, Lisa and that other girl from the lake. Oh, the werewolf’s nose was kin; Eddie followed the familiar scents to get where he needed.

[1] Robust: very strong and healthy.

[2] Malnourished: weak and in bad health because of having too little food.

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