Listen To The Foxes

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
A short story written for India Emerald's latest Flash Fiction Challenge.

Submitted: August 20, 2017

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Submitted: August 20, 2017

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Listen To The Foxes

Listen to the foxes and listen well. You’ll hear them speak of Vixendell. A place where they can live in peace, free from the ever-present threat of the hunter with his dogs; free from the poisoned food put out to entice and kill, free from being villanized.

The foxes know of their reputation. They know that so many view them as vermin, as thieves, as sly opportunists. And in some ways they know those views are not so far from the truth. But with humans pressing ever further into their habitat, they have been forced to adapt to survive.

The cubs grow up hearing tales of so much cruelty. They hear how their ancestors might have been cornered, torn apart by packs of hounds made crazy by the scent of blood. They hear about the fox caught in a trap, starving; that it had to chew through it’s own foot to get free, only to die hungry and alone because it could no longer run.

They also hear about friendly humans, the champions of the foxes, who provide food for some of their number. And of people that, instead of inflicting cruelty, treat the injuries and offer places of sanctuary instead. The trick is knowing who to trust and the fox lives by the saying, ‘Trust no one until that trust is earned.’

Vixendell is their paradise, their Utopia. None of them know quite where it is or in which direction to travel when going in search of it. But they all believe that such a place exists. No living in constant fear and danger, no roads with four wheeled beasts that speed onwards in a bid to run them down. No need to steal for food, and plenty of hunting there when necessary without upsetting the natural balance.

At Vixendell, Sionna rules. Sionna, or Shona, is the Goddess of foxes, their ultimate protector. Life there would be so sweet, if only they knew the way. So many have left in search of this sanctuary, going north, south, east and west yet none have ever returned.

But that is not so strange. Who would choose to leave Utopia once it had been found?

Every year many more make the journey only to never be seen again.

So when you are out walking, or driving along the road, and you catch a glimpse of that fox’s red and white tail disappearing into the hedgerows, wish it luck on its journey in search of its vulpine paradise. And if you are feeling very kind just whisper, ‘Sionna be with you’, and that fox will hear and understand that you wish it well.

 

 


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