Gwendolyn had been running since that afternoon. The palace guards had found out she was a mage unrelated to the magisters, and no doubt the magisters would have her tried and executed. Her body trembled at the thought. She didn't want to die... she didn't want to be labeled and branded so... it was just who she was.
She found a slightly uprooted tree and decided to hide under there. She got down onto her knees in the dirt and mud, and managed to get inside. The palace guard came nearby, and, thankfully, not one of them was that skilled a tracker. They looked everywhere, but found no sign of her. The commander scowled. "Next time, we'll bring dogs. That forest witch can't hide here forever!" With that, they galloped off, leaving Gwendolyn alone once more.
Alone. She thought to herself. Tears streamed down her face, wetting the dirt beneath her. "All this talk of politics and executions, and the mere fact that I can use magic makes me among this debacle when I couldn't care less..." It was then that she heard a growl, and turned to look.
A bobcat growled at her, upset that she had disturbed it's home and began to hiss at her. Gwendolyn looked at the bobcat sadly. "What I wouldn't give to be an animal instead of a human. At least then I won't have to hear of this constant talk of who sits on the throne and laws. I just want to live my life in peace..." She looked more intently at the bobcat, and saw that it was wounded. Her face changed to that of concern. "Here, let me help you..."
The bobcat responded by slashing her cheek. Warm blood dripped to the ground, but Gwendolyn refused to cry out in pain. "It's alright... I won't hurt you. I'm a friend. I promise I will not hurt you." Gwendolyn cooed softly, and eventually the bobcat relented, letting Gwendolyn near it.
She looked at the wound and noticed that it was made by blast of magic. "Wizards... thinking they can do as they please," Gwendolyn stated somewhat angrily. She gently placed her hand on the wound, making sure not to upset the bobcat, and muttered softly: "Haelos."
Immediately, the wound began to close up, and the bobcat stared at her, amazed and grateful. She was about to do the same on her cheek, but then stopped herself. "A token to remember you by, my friend." Gwendolyn began to crawl out of the nook made by the uprooted tree, and turned back to see the bobcat following her.
"No, no," Gwendolyn giggled. "Where I walk, I must go alone," The bobcat would have none of that, and rubbed it's body against her bare legs. She smiled, bent down, and stroked it's head. "Well, I guess you can come along."