I watched with utter amazement as Skye actually made it rain. Then I got annoyed. The rain was COLD! Now I was not only cold and miserable, I was colder, wet, and even more miserable than before. At least she made the sun come out and provide at least a little bit of warmth. Once we had crossed the water I had an idea to warm things up a little bit more. “Hey Skye and Emma, do you think you could somehow work together to raise the humidity? It would make things seem a lot warmer and we would lose a lot less heat.”
They both grinned at me and gave it a try. A few minutes later I was feeling a bit less cold, although my feet were still completely numb, as we trudged onward toward the very distant peak. “Does anyone have a container of any sort on them that might hold water?” asked Seph. His name was the one I was trying very hard not to forget.
I searched my belongings but came up with nothing, “Sorry, I have nothing.”
I watched as everyone searched his or her belongings, eventually Austin came out with a water bottle, “Will this work?”
Seph grinned, “That is exactly what I was looking for.”
He quickly took the empty water bottle and filled it with clean, white snow. “It’s so we can drink it when it melts,” he informed us. “We have to have something to drink that won’t take away what little heat we have left.”
We all nodded, seeing the wisdom of Seph’s idea. After Seph had packed the bottle with as much snow as he could fit inside, he put the lid on and stuck it in the back pocket of his jeans before we started moving on once again. My foot hit a hidden rock under the snow, sending a jolt of pain up my leg. I grimaced and pulled my foot out of my shoe to assess the damage and gasped. My foot was blue! Almost purple! How was I supposed to get to the top if I was already on the verge of frostbite! I sat down and began to rub both of my feet vigorously, trying to restore some of the warmth. Soon I had one of my feet warmed up so that it was only slightly pinkish instead of the horrible purplish blue it had been. I quickly rubbed my other foot back to life and slipped my boots back on.
Wait, boots? Since when did I have boots? I remembered wearing slip-ons not fleece-lined boots! I sighed and shrugged, it had been a weird day already, and I must have imagined my slip-ons. I got up and looked around to see that the others had gotten quite a ways ahead of me. “Hey guys! Wait up!” I yelled after them. They all looked back at me, surprised that I was so far behind.
“What did you do to fall so far behind? Fall asleep?!” No-shame called back to me.
As he called a loud crack sounded from above us. We all looked up as a huge chunk of snow detached itself from the mountain and began to tumble down toward us. I began to run toward the group…we stood much better chances of surviving if we stayed together. “Look for cover!” I shouted at the group as they started to split up, “and stay together!”
They all nodded and began to look around, there was a small cave not far from where they were and they all ran for it. I started to run for it too but I wasn’t fast enough. The avalanche slammed into me driving all the air out of my lungs. I toppled me over and quickly buried me. Blackness engulfed me and I blacked out. When I came to, there was dim light from above me, but I was surrounded by snow. Well, if there was light here then I must be near the surface…I got up and jumped at the roof, which caved in as I hit it. Climbing up the side of the hole I was in was pretty easy and I was soon out.
“Where are you Ellori!?”
“Come on Ellori you gotta be around somewhere!”
It was the group, they were looking for me. I quickly ran toward the voices, and almost ran headfirst into Austin. When he saw me his eyes widened and he slowly backed away from me. “Whoa now, good boy, just stay there.” I cocked my head at him.
“What are you doing?” I tried to ask. But it came out as a growl with a short yip at the end. What in the world?
Skye came over the hill, “What are you doing Aust—“ that was as far as she got before she saw me. “A wolf!” she screamed.
My eyes widened and I looked behind me. There was nothing there. What was it that had Skye and Austin so scared? I looked around again and caught a glance of a gray tail speckled with white. I quickly turned around, but as I turned around the tail moved as well. I growled frustratedly and turned around even faster, but the tail remained stubbornly at the edge of my vision.
I had gone though about three circles before I heard Austin’s laughter, “It’s chasing its tail!” he exclaimed between fits of laughter.
Wait a second; the wolf is chasing its tail? But, I am not a wolf! I looked down and saw paws and horror washed over me. Maybe I was a wolf! I raised one hand, and one of the paws lifted up. I put it back down and raised the other paw and the paws did the same thing. I was definitely the wolf they were seeing. This was bad. Very bad. I yipped and jumped up to where Austin and Skye were standing, both of them were still laughing. As I moved up to them Austin quickly recovered, “Whoa there I’m sorry if I hurt your feelings, you can chase your tail if you want. Just please stay at a safe distance. Again both he and Skye were backing slowly off. I cringed and whimpered. They were afraid of me! I really hoped this wolf thing wasn’t permanent.
“Aww look Austin, you made him sad! He looks pretty friendly if you ask me.” He!? He!? I’m not a guy! I’m a girl! At least I had a supporter…maybe if I acted sad enough and just kind of crawled up to them…
I decided to try it…what could it hurt right? I kept my tail between my legs and my head low and slowly walked up to Austin and Skye. Skye hid behind Austin, effectively blocking his retreat. I mentally smiled; I think she did that on purpose.
“Nice doggy, we don’t want to hurt you. Now I’m going to stretch my hand out and pet you; you had better not bite it.” Austin said told me seriously. If I had been human I would have burst out laughing, and I did hear a giggle from Skye.
As I drew within Austin’s reach he slowly held his arm out to me. I rubbed my head against it in a show of friendliness. Soon Skye had decided it was safe enough to come and pet me too and I decided to rub against her.
“What are you guys doing?!” called Seph worriedly.
Austin and Skye looked over at him and grinned. “Oh, we were just decided that this wolf here needed a friend, so we came up and petted him. He didn’t seem to mind,” Austin called over to him. “You want to pet him too?”
I growled slightly when Austin used the male pronouns. “Oh a she are you?” I nodded and Austin laughed. “Alright how would you like to pet her then?”
Seph still looked wary, but I jumped friskily over to him and rubbed against his legs. As he stretched his hand slowly out to me I quickly licked it. Seph laughed, “Well you certainly are a friendly wolf aren’t you!”
Suddenly I had an idea. I moved slightly away from Seph and started to write in the snow with my paw.
“I A-M E-L-L-O-R-I”
Austin came up and read it, “No way! A wolf that can write and thinks that it’s Ellori!”