In a land before transformation, where a corpulent charcoal moon tracks a faraway sun one cannot see black from white such is the blinding brume of eternal eclipse. It is there that the archer is superfluous, the hunter marksman nonessential. No place for transparent miracles, imperturbable martyrs, just wishful thinking fumbling lovers. No pistols at dawn in such foggy places, no arrow can be aimed in such murk for what prevails befriends only the little brown mushroom and the three blind mice. The language spoken in this place neglected to baptise the philosopher’s aspirational understanding of the fundamental causes and principles of a universe unexposed.
Testosterone charged Big Chuck drove a monster four by four something or other. His expedition into the Dark Forest of Out There Somewhere had gone horribly wrong yet ever the sucker to prove an urban myth his quest to capture the Ghostly Virgin of the Fog his crew mates had told him of was one he would pursue undaunted. The fact his compatriots had made up the tale remained unknown to the poor delusional chap.
“Man if I can get a tranquilising dart into the butt of that little beauty and cage her up the boys will be so bloody jealous. I’ll be a hero, maybe get to write a book about the hunt someday, I mean we’ve only got those two toe rags the Big Foot and The Abdominal Snowman back on Earth” Big Chuck often spoke thoughts aloud to himself.
The thing was that contact with the giant mother ship was lost, his navigational aids unglued. Worse still Big Chuck was hopelessly at sea and befuddled in this lightless land of misty stew. Thankfully, or so he presumed, his fog lights still functioned.
Now the tribe of almost humans that inhabited the Dark Forest of the Out There Somewhere would in an ideal world have worn spectacles for the evolutionary process had been unkind in terms of 20/20 vision, moreover a torch or two would not have gone amiss. Sadly, they had neither nor likely ever would it seemed. That, of course was before Big Chuck arrived unannounced with his prolific fog lights!
Big Chuck was parked up, sat upon his vehicles bonnet in order to contemplate his situation over a swift vape. In truth he was off with the fairies, which is the reason he at first failed to notice young Evergreen III (yes the tribe did have rudimentary numeric skills) out searching for useful things. The girl was dressed in a full length deerskin cape – it goes without saying the tribe had yet to invent sleeves, collars and leggings – upon which sat a cheap owl brooch fashioned from bark. In all of her eighteen tree trunk rings she had never seen the like of what she stumbled upon that day namely two shafts of fierce golden light that had, in her iffy eyes at least, burned holes in the fog.
Albeit a little charry she approached the light shafts ever so slowly. The temptation to reach out and touch proved overwhelming, so she did just that. That her hand had sliced the light apart shocked her somewhat for she had presumed it a solid thing. Nevertheless, Evergreen III determined she would somehow entice it, well both beams in reality, to follow her home, which was exactly what she unwittingly did for Big Chuck had been startled from his musings into action the very moment Evergreen III had interfered with his fog light.
The girl’s tried and tested mode of hunting was to sing the Song of Enchantment, the song that could in effect hypnotize any and all the creatures of the forest. “Brilliant it works” she said to herself clapping her hands together in glee as the lights moved forward with her. When she increased her pace so did the lights, when reducing the pace vice versa. When she looked ahead she noted her own jet black image as crystal clear and attached to her feet. “How magic is that!” her passing thought. Clearly she had no idea that Big Chuck was tailing her at a safe distance.
Closer, ever closer to her village she travelled with her prize at her back. “Bollocks’ exclaimed Big Chuck as he checked his fuel gauge following the first engine splutter. “Thrice bollocks” as his fog lights began to fade on him also. Moments later the whole kit and caboodle died on him. Evergreen III, back in familiar gloom was bereft wondering exactly what had happened.
Big Chuck was a man’s man, a fellow others could rely on in a crisis and now stuck lost in an unknown environment fazed him not. “Let there be light” his immediate reaction to the situation. Amid the detritus at his feet he discovered a worthwhile dry broken branch, “Perfect”. Taking the safety matches (one of the few items future technology had never adequately replaced) from his top jacket pocket he set it alight.
From just a little way away Evergreen III watched in awe. The brave girl took not too long to pluck up the courage and make herself known. The pair stared at each other right up close (a necessity to short sighted Evergreen III) neither moving an inch for what seemed an inordinate period until she beckoned him hence in the time honoured manner of the universe, a simple wave. Lightless and shadow less she walked on, Big Chuck following in her wake with his tranquiliser gun at the ready, “Just in case.”
It was thus that Evergreen III delivered up Big Chuck to her kind in their treetop settlement. He was revered forevermore as the man who gifted them fire, and over time so much more. The pair fell in love, of course they did. She taught him the ways of the forest, he reciprocated teaching her the ways of man. For all his bravado at heart Big Chuck was, as they called him in his bar back on Earth, ‘a good bloke.’ Once given subliminal (they had to be subliminal as Big Chuck was so very bull-headed at first) lessons in tenderness and respect he became quite the greatest ‘bloke’.
In many tree trunk rings hence the couple would become legend, their exploits even committed to sacred writ, their values lauded far and wide within and beyond the Forest of Somewhere Out There. Yet those tales of wonder are to be made known only when the tree trunk rings have multiplied some more.