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Thursday, 13 September 2012

Blog 95: Moving House

A light rain fell in the bright sunshine, feeding the parched forest. He stood in the shade of the giant leaves of the parisula, each leaf longer and wider than he would ever be. He’d made his home from the leaves of that tree, it didn’t take many. The leaves were glued in place by the resin of the catamac tree which turned to amber in the warm sunlight.

He’d need the help of his troop to move the house; it was suspended high over the forest in the canopy where he could keep watch for intruders and raise the alarm. He took his duty very seriously despite only having to raise the alarm twice in all his time there. He’d been given a horn by the alpha to sound the alarm for which he’d made a pouch he kept on him at all times.

The first time he called the alarm the troop had been there in no time to fight off the invaders who quickly retreated back to their own territory. The second time however his troop had been near the opposite border of their dominion when the intruders came. His signal not only brought his troops attention but that of the invaders. He fought them furiously, killing two, but was overwhelmed by their numbers and suffered deep wounds all over his body. No fur grew over the many scars he’d suffered for his troop. When he saw himself reflected in a pool of water he sometimes wondered if it was worth the sacrificed he’d made.

He told himself the scars might pay off in the end. The females liked warriors and soon he would take a mate. He was one of the largest males in the territory which was probably the only reason he’d survived the second invasion. When the time came he would swing through the trees amongst them and call at the top of his lungs and they would fight each other to be his. He would pick one who would live with him in the house he’d built for a family. The two of them would watch the border together and at nights when the stars were out they’d count them, lying on their backs on the branch where he did.

The troop came through the trees, his brothers and sisters amongst them. He greeted them with an offering of fresh fruit and nuts which they ate before beginning to untie his home from its position in the dying tree. It was moved to a new position, more stable where he would need to trim the foliage to better his view of the border.

When the home was moved most of the troop moved back to theirs at the centre of the territory but his older brother stayed with his family to help with the small touches that would make the house a home again. The nest was filled with fresh, soft leaves and he watched his brother and his family, his young son who held so tightly to his mother while his little eyes glinted with curiosity. His brother had the scars from tearing their enemies off him when he arrived during that second battle. They traced each other’s scars and expressed gratitude for the help in the vicious fighting.

They were still sitting together when he saw dark shapes moving through the forest bellow, the other troupe had come in force. His brother’s mate hid with the child while he blew the horn and threw himself amongst the invaders. The troupe would be there in no time whilst he and his brother took revenge for the death of their father who’d taken three of the enemy with him. He sustained many more cuts and wounds during that battle and his brother almost died but he never regretted it. He was protecting his home, doing his duty.

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