A cold chill fell over Anna.
It couldn't be the same stump as before right? She had been travelling in a different direction altogether. She had been much mindful of her steps this time, careful to not step off the trail or veer of in an unknown direction.
She glanced upwards, hoping to get a better look at the sky and maybe catch a glimpse of the sun. How long had she been walking now? It had to be for at least an hour. At most a trip through the grove was 20 minutes.
Anna could picture her mother, peeling potatoes over the kitchen sink, glancing out the window worriedly at the pathway that led to their little house. Anna had promised her mother that she would be home straight after the social to help her prepare Sunday dinner. It had just been the two of them for most of the summer, with her father and her brothers away on a fishing schooner until the fall. Her mother always seemed to get overprotective with "the boys" gone.
It wouldn't be long before her mother would call up Mary's parents and ask if their daughter had arrived home yet. Upon learning that Mary had arrived safe and sound, she would chat with Mary's mother, drawing out the conversation, eyes gazing out to the pathway in hopes that Anna would come dawdling around the bend. After the conversation dragged on for some time, she would hang up, wrap a shawl around her shoulders, and begin to follow the route from the house to the church. She would follow this route where she would surely would come upon her daughter and chastise her for making her worry.
Anna was sure that's how it would happen. She had heard a radio broadcast a while back that gave tips about what to do when lost. "Stay in one place," the announcer said. "I makes individuals much easier to find."
She thought these words rang true and decided that she would settle down and wait for someone to find her, It was the sensible thing to do. Her mother would be along any moment, or if not her, another villager who was running some Sunday errand. They would lead her out of her and she would look back and laugh at how on a fine summers day she had lost her sense of direction.
It was settled then. It was here she would stay, and besides she had a perfectly good place to sit and rest until rescue came. It was a nice wide stump after all.