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Into the Woods

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It was rather strange being in a forest again. The last time Wilson could recall walking amongst the towering trees and dirt paths was so many years ago now and so foggy a memory that he couldn’t be entirely sure it even happened. If not for those words that still hung in the back of his mind, the man would surely have thought he imagined it all. After all, he was just a child at the time.

“That poor thing. He will surely die before he returns home. All that potential, and he threw it away to bring you here.”

They hurt. Those words still hurt even now, even as he couldn’t remember who exactly it was that had brought him here. A Verdant, that much was known, but who was it that had given up their life just to make sure Wilson was somewhere comfortable? His kind could travel to the forests with ease and yet the forest dwellers could not scale the mountain without great trouble. Yet that man, one with a kind smile Wilson could just barely picture, had done it while showing hardly any struggle even as he disappeared into the powdery white of the snowstorm that still raged at the time.

“All that potential, and he threw it away to bring you here.”

The Snowfallen stops a moment, taking in the world around him. So full of colors and sounds that he was not accustomed to. His feet didn’t dare touch the floor, his body kept suspended in the air and out of the way of touching any of the delicate life around him. They were sensitive to the cold, he’d learned that long ago. A part of him was quite sad about it all. It was so beautiful, but he did not belong here. He never could.

The sound of movement in the distance draws Wilson from his thoughts, his mind back to the task at hand. He had a letter to deliver to the head of the group of Verdant who lived in these woods. At the time of the request he had found it strange that Ms. Wickerbottom had asked him of all people to do it, as she had been the one to make the trip so many times before, but now it was so much more clear. The older woman wasn’t busy with other matters, she simply wanted to get Wilson out of the village. Guilt was a terrible thing which had lead to the young Snowfallen shutting himself away and refusing to go anywhere near the forests. But Wilson couldn’t say no to Ms. Wickerbottom, and she knew that.

Gloved hands gently push a couple of bushes aside, careful to try and keep his powers at bay while he passed through them. Whatever had made the sound from before wasn’t too far off now, he was certain of it. The man hoped that it would be the Verdant he was looking for so as to make this trip end much quicker than he anticipated, even if the thought was rather foolish. What were the odds of the first person he ran into being the person he was searching for?

Wilson’s eyes took in the area he was now in and, a little more importantly, the man about five meters away. The area was something like a clearing, trees sparse and more spread out than the woods he had just come from. The ground dipped into small ponds, some larger than others, but they were all rather shallow and the grassy floor could still be made out under the water. The man, however, was the most interesting thing in the area to Wilson. From a distance it was hard to make out his appearance, though the white in his otherwise grey hair did stand out in the overall green scenery. One of his arms were raised and, after watching for a moment, Wilson could make out the movement of vines working their way up the tree he was standing in front of. They twisted as they climbed the bark and soon enough small flowers began to bloom. It was enchanting to watch and had Wilson’s full attention. He was so distracted in fact that he took little notice in the fact that the plants around him were beginning to grow covered in frost.

He also didn’t notice the figure moving steadily closer towards him in the brush, or the shine of the spearhead pointed directly at him.