A jaguar fights for survival in the depths of the South American wilds.


A Comic Storyline


Michael Wilson

In the jungle there is no good and there is no evil, there is only the fight for survival. For the fiercest fighters life yields many rewards. This story attends the tale of one such fighter living in the wilds of South America.

It had been raining for the past couple of days. The animals all acclimated to the new rainy season the best they could. In the long branches of a tree growing over some rapids a family of monkeys were frolicking about. The monkeys climbed, chittered and groomed one another in blissful ignorance of the dangers around them. Unbeknownst to the monkeys a shape approached them from above. A large, slender body with pale fur was making its way through the branches.

It was Ghost, the albino jaguar, and he was hunting for his next meal. Making use of practiced deftness, Ghost silently made his way to the monkeys looking for the best position to pounce.

Ghost readied his body with keenly honed instinct, he was only waiting for the right moment to strike. All of a sudden the sky cracked with lighting allowing one of the monkeys to spot the pale jaguar. The monkey howled to alert the rest of his clan.

The monkeys began to scatter as Ghost made his move. Ghost focused his attention on a baby monkey that had been separated from its mother in the commotion. The baby ran to the end of the branch looking for safety only to be met by a dead end. The baby was cornered.

Ghost slowly approached his prey, ready to feed himself unaware that this was the day he would meet with destiny. Lightning cracked again as Ghost took his leap. In desperation, the baby jumped for a far-off branch dodging the jaguar. Ghost plunged into the rapids below as the mother monkey collected her baby, cooing softly to comfort it. The rapids ebbed and flowed roughly against Ghost’s pale body. He used all his strength to try and swim to safety, but the current was too strong.

He blacked out as the rapids carried him down river.  

Ghost had awoken on the bank of a river. He was wet and disoriented, but otherwise unharmed. He stood up and gripped to gain his bearings. He looked around his new environment while waiting for his strength to return to him. Ghost sniffed the air looking for fresh scents. He detected the smell of deer and begun to follow the trail. Ghost travelled in the direction of deer for some several hours before he reached a clearing. Ghost, having spotted the deer, brought his body low to the ground as he approached.

He was ready to work his muscles to not fail to catch his meal this time. He leapt and nabbed one of the deer by its neck. The rest of the deer scattered in horror as Ghost sunk his teeth into his prey. Bleed seeped from the deer’s neck as its eyes rolled back, screeching out a death rattle.

Ghost gripped his kill in his mouth and carried it into a nearby tree. The sounds of the quiet jungle echoed around him as he picked the carcass clean. Ghost did not know where the rapids had carried him. He was unfamiliar with this part of the jungle. Exploring it would have to wait until tomorrow for tonight he would look for shelter from the elements. It had taken almost an hour as the sun was setting, but Ghost found a cave nestled in between some cliff rocks. It was elevated off the ground which kept it safe for the time being. Examining the cave more closely, ghost decided it met with his approval.

The next morning Ghost went hunting for the deer again. He made it back to the clearing, but something was not quite right. The clearing was silent, dead silent. Ghost tread softly as he approached it looking for a new scent. There was a scent, a familiar scent. Just then, another jaguar jumped out to attack Ghost who deftly dodged the assault.

He was surrounded by a family of jaguars!

Ghost could take any of them one on one, but multiple adversaries were not odds he could easily overcome. Ghost weighed his options as the jaguars closed in on him, his every instinct telling him to flee. He flicked his ears as he looked for an opening. Ghost decided to run.

The chase through the jungle was intense as Ghost ran with everything he had. Bushes smacked him in the face as the jaguars nipped at his heels. He slowed down just long enough for the lead jaguar to tag him on his right flank. He screeched in pain but did not stop running until he had reached a ravine. In desperation, Ghost jumped across and managed to grip the edge of the other side before pulling himself up. The other jaguars did not follow him across.

The lead jaguar, Timbor, was upset that their prey eluded them. This was his jungle, and he did not want any competition. The enemy jaguars began hissing and snarling at each other from across the ravine until the family reluctantly left Ghost alone to lick his wounds. Ghost began looking for a way back to the cave.

He could tell from the scent that the cave remained undiscovered, he gingerly sat down to begin recuperating.

Night had fallen by the time Ghost had tended to his wounds and had laid down to rest. It was now beginning to rain. Water droplets woke Ghost from his sleep as he got up and looked around. The cave was filling with Water!

To see in the darkened cave, Ghost had climbed to a higher ledge. The entrance to the cave was filling up with water as water sloshed around the corners of the rapidly drowning lair. Sensing that his life was in danger, ghost climbed to the top of the cave as the water rose. The water rose higher and higher almost as if it was pursuing Ghost.

He had managed to climb out of the top of the cave. Feeling a sense of triumph, he lifted his head proudly and stared at the darkened rainy sky. Ghost roared as lightning cracked the sky. He conquered the water; he will conquer the jaguars too. His mind made up; Ghost decided to claim this jungle as his new kingdom.

Ghost began his new mission early in the morning. He had spent said morning leaving scent markers on many dew covered plants. Ghost did not travel far when he had encountered one of his targets. It was the youngest of his three rivals perched by a bush. He knew He had to this delicately.

With practiced stealth he snuck around the back of young jaguar. With no hesitation he lunged and bit the young jaguar on the neck, the effect was immediate, after a brief struggle the young submitted to the bleed neck wound. Ghost had killed his first rival unceremoniously. A week later Ghost had picked up the scent of the second of the three jaguars and was following it to a river. Strangely, the scent was coming from inside the water. Ghost carefully made his way to the bank and cautiously begun to drink from the water.

He paused when he saw a shape moving in the water. The shape burst forth from the river revealing itself; it’s an anaconda!

Ghost starred down the massive snake. It must’ve been 40 feet long. The two predators engage one another in a fierce primal battle. The anaconda snapped its jaws at ghost who quickly darted out of the way. Ghost slashed the snake on the face which caused it to reel back in pain. The snake tried to coil around Ghost, but yet again Ghost dodged and slashed at the snake.

Deciding the pale cat was not worth the effort, the anaconda retreated in search of easier prey. Ghost roared in victory. He could smell the scent of the second jaguar on the great snake, he would be wary of this river in the future to avoid sharing his rival’s fate.

With two jaguars down all that remained was Timbor. It was two days later when they met for the final time. Ghost had been traveling along the stone ridge looking for Timbor. He was caught off guard when Timbor tagged his right flank again. Hissing in pain Ghost whirled around to confront his enemy. The two jaguars raced to the top of a mountain. This would be Ghost’s last obstacle.

At the peak of the cliff the two cats stared each other down. They hissed and snarled at one another before their final battle. Ghost took the first lunge, but Timbor dodged and scratched his foe on the back. Ghost reeled in pain before slashing Timbor in the eye.

The biting and clawing continued for some time until Timbor grabbed and threw Ghost to the side of the cliff. Timbor was ready to make his move and lunged at Ghost to finish him off. Ghost moved out of the way and grabbed Timbor throwing him off the cliff. Timbor fell to his death impaled on jagged rocks.

Tire and with little strength left, Ghost let out a victory roar. All his rivals were now dead, and the jungle was finally his.

In the jungle there is no good and there is no evil, there is only the fight for survival. For the fiercest fighters life yields many rewards. Ghost’s roar echoed across his new kingdom. It was a wordless challenge to any who would face his fangs.

Submitted: October 09, 2021

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