Con Verse Lea; Chapter 47, Beam 140

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Stories from the Verse
Con Verse Lea
Chapter 47:  Beam 140
Table of Contents
Previous chapter:  Takano 71

The third day that they were camped at that site, Beam took the new rifle and decided to get some useful practice with it by doing a bit of hunting.  He shot several rabbits, which he skinned and cleaned and cooked for dinner, supplemented by some of the root vegetables, and had enough meat left that he covered it to serve with some of the remaining eggs in the morning.

Over dinner he said, “After breakfast we’ll strike camp and move elsewhere.”

This obviously surprised his human companions, as it took a moment for Bron to swallow what he was chewing and say, “Why?”  Ashleigh’s face showed that she wondered the same thing.

“Apart from the fact that I don’t want to stay in the same place too long,” he answered, “there’s the fact that I pretty much announced our presence this afternoon when I fired that gun half a dozen times.  I would be surprised if word of our presence doesn’t reach someone’s ears by nightfall tomorrow, and we want to be elsewhere when searchers come here.”

That seemed to satisfy them.  Of course, he would need to decide which direction to go, where they might find another place to camp with a convenient water source but a dearth of civilization.  Woods, this time, he thought.  We need to head down the slope--but across first, in case they try to track us.  Anyway, he would sleep on it.

As usual, he awoke early and started breakfast.  He plated the food and washed the pan before the others were awake, and then washed and packed the dishes.  The tricky part was going to be striking and packing the tents--tents were always harder to pack than to unpack.  He hoped he remembered how these were folded and rolled.  It took longer than he would have liked, or even thought, to get them consolidated in their travel form, but it was not yet noon, so he figured they did reasonably well and would do better next time.  He checked the ground and found one missed tent stake, which he tucked into one of the tents; they would figure it out tonight.

His decision on direction was to double back about a mile and then turn downhill.  He thought it unlikely that anyone who found the campsite would guess that they had doubled back on their path, and so it would look more like a dead end.  Of course, a good tracker could tell that they had walked that route in both directions, but were these soldiers trackers?  He thought not.

They crossed about a mile of goat country and entered light woods.  Beam realized that they were evergreens, which reminded him that they were fairly high; he wondered whether he was breathing easier because of the medical attention he’d gotten in that last world, or because he had been smoking less, or because meteorology was different in this world.  It wasn’t as if he was breathing easily on this hike, but perhaps all that climbing through the caves had helped.

As the woods thickened, again they turned onto a road, more a glorified trail, Beam thought, to help hide their tracks, and then continued through the woods a couple miles later.

When they came to what Beam would have called a brook, they stopped.  He tasted the water, recognizing that this was a poor test for water purity but that it tasted fine to him and he didn’t have a better test.

“This looks good,” he said.  “We’ll camp here.  We need to find spaces for the tents and for a fire, and scrounge some dry firewood.”

He wished he had a fishing pole, but any fish in a brook this size would be rather small.  They would be eating their rations, unless he found something else.  But for the moment it was pitching camp.

The tents went up more easily this time, as all three of them had now had the experience and some clue what they were doing, although he thought they could do better when they had done it a few more times.

He refilled their water jugs from the brook before calling it a night and crawling into bed with his young wife.

Next chapter:  Chapter 48:  Hastings 245
Table of Contents

There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with twenty other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #465:  Characters Wander.  Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter.  It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.

As to the old stories that have long been here:

Verse Three, Chapter One:  The First Multiverser Novel

Old Verses New

For Better or Verse

Spy Verses

Garden of Versers

Versers Versus Versers

Stories from the Verse Main Page

The Original Introduction to Stories from the Verse

Read the Stories

The Online Games

Books by the Author

Go to Other Links

M. J. Young Net

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