Pack cry - the dream of freedom

To see the first part of the story, see Pack Cry - the prison.

When Fara opened her eyes, the first thing she noticed was not the blaring traffic outside, but rather the lack of it. In its place were the sounds she was used to- birdsong, whispering leaves and, most wonderful of all, the Cry. It seemed so close, so tantalizingly near, that Fara ran at the cage wall in frustration. But instead of feeling the cold bars slam into her body, she found herself falling through swirling color and light.

Her paws touched the ground again, but this time, the rough concrete concrete had gone, replaced by smooth rock, carved by wind, rain, ice and time. To her surprise, she was no longer in the cage- she wasn't even anywhere near the city! She was running along an empty mountainside, where only the toughest, leanest trees cast their roots into the rocky ground. A wild breeze toyed with her fur, buffeting her like a plaything. It seemed so long since she had felt the wind on her face. Moonlight guided her way up the winding trail, but Fara had no idea where she was going: her legs seemed to be running of their own accord!

Then, slowly, the run became a steady trot, and the trot became a walk, which in turn stopped altogether. She was standing before a shadowy overhang, and on it stood a wolf, silhouetted against the black sky. He padded towards her, and she saw the most incredible creature she had ever set eyes on. He was of purest white: white as the mountain snow on the highest peaks, as pale as a full moon. His amber eyes blazed with a power that made Fara think of a faraway place where it was always winter, and sometimes the sun forgot to rise, plunging the world into darkness for months on end. In a streak of white, he landed before her, fur whipping in the breeze.

The pair greeted like old litter mates, even though they had never met, and as with most canine meetings, they sniffed and snuffled at one another. He learnt that Fara was sad, trapped and denied her freedom by the cruelty of man. She saw that although he was free to wander wherever he wished, he was lonely and just as unhappy. Fara whimpered softly and licked him, to let him know that his wanderings would never need be lonely again, and he returned it. Her days of imprisonment were over, and as long as she stayed with him, they would keep running, never to meet the bars of the cage.

Then the white wolf yipped joyfully, and leapt onto a boulder. He flicked his head, inviting Fara to run with him, and she did. Under the eye of the silvery moon they danced and chased without care or reason. The white wolf showed Fara the mountain spring where wild goats came to quench their thirst, and the place where the lonely eagle raised his brood in the spring.

Before they knew it, Fara found herself on the highest mountain peak, and it felt as if they could see the whole world from here! Trees stretched for miles, rivers wound like tiny blue threads; even the city was gone, vanished under a carpet of green. Beside her, the white wolf bounded onto a jutting cliff and pointed his muzzle to the stars. A song burst from his lungs and filled Fara's ears. She couldn't resist. Leaping up beside him, she added her own voice to the chorus, her breath turning to silver mist before her.

As their duet raged and echoed in the valleys and precipices, the white wolf turned to Fara and licked her tenderly on the neck.

Then the world vanished in a burst of light, and reality slashed through Fara's dreams. The heart-wrenching wolf-song became the shout of a man, and the white wolf's tongue a stick prodding into her side...

I can write no more, but I can tell you that the story has a happy ending. The man who caught Fara takes her to sell to another person, and their route takes them along a mountain road. Then he is startled, and veers off the road. Fara finds the truck door open, and runs for it. She finds the white wolf, Rusaba, and soon is reunited with her brother, Solra. As time goes by, the little group grows close, and decide to begin their own pack. Rusaba and Fara's cubs are born next spring,but I can't say happily ever after, as life is never easy out there.

by Josie Rylands©

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