It’s cold, very cold. The white stuff is deep and thick, and continues to pile up from above. It’s a terrible day to be out… but sometimes, a feline gets that itch under the skin to roam their territory, to explore other territories, and simply enjoy the freedom to prowl.
A smart feline has an innate ability to find their way back to their den, and I’ve always prided myself on being the cleverest of felines. So today, despite the weather, I’m going to leave the den, and roam with no real destination.
The trick to keeping warm is to keep running. It keeps the blood pumping from the whiskers to the tip of the tail. The chill bite in the air against the nose or the icy cold stuff under the pads of the paws isn’t so bad if you just keep moving, and make your own warmth.
…I know this place. The water has turned hard and solid, and there is an odd stillness in the air in a hunting ground that is normally filled with activity, but I visit these grounds enough to recognize them despite the white coat. This place is not far from the den… no. This is not what I want! I desire new grounds, new prey… I must travel further!
I can’t help the surge of adrenalyne that fills my lithe form when I cross the tracks of the Roaring Monsters. It is the most dangerous part about going on the prowl. No hunter is fast enough or strong enough to defeat them; to be in the path of a Roaring Monster is certain death. A safe feline will avoid their path completely; a resourceful hunter is extra careful when crossing their tracks to reach new territory.
Luckily, the world is quiet this morning; there is no chirp of birds on the cold air, and even the Roaring Monsters seem to be at rest. I don’t mind. It feels like I have the world to myself, that I can mark whatever I please.
There is an odd sense of satisfaction being the first creature to lay tracks in the perfect blanket of white stuff.
Soon, I come to realize that the landscape is new and fresh, that I am running in a territory I’ve never been in before, and my lungs swell at that knowledge. I somehow feel lighter, my feet barely touching the ground before they are off again. Pata-pat pata-pat pata-pat on top of the cold stuff. It’s exhilarating!
Amidst the cold, and the calm, and the quiet, I’m shocked when my quiet pata-pats become a loud clop-clop-clop beside me. It seems I’m not the only one on the prowl! He is a great beast, and no doubt a fine hunter, as his camoflage is the perfect color of the cold stuff. Perhaps I’ve found his territory, and he means to run me off of it!
Ha! My legs are already primed for a race!
*gasp* *wheeze* Oh great food dish, he’s… he’s fast! Come on kitty, you’ve chased prey longer than this, just a little more…
Oh, he’s barely at a trot now! He’s trying to go easy on me now! This is just embarrassing…
All right, great beast. I concede. You win!
I had to rest, but the scenery was new, and full of places where prey might be hiding away from the cold. Somehow I got the impression this great beast became so good at prowling for defense rather than hunting, and wouldn’t mind me looking for tasties on his territory. His teeth had turned out to be a bit flat for a hunter.
I don’t mind that the race was lost. The journey was a success!