Animal Stories

When I first discovered the mapping at the Keep and read the first set of instructions, it was telling me to trigger a number of switches in a particular order. However, getting to the place, wasn't going to be easy and getting to the first switch was going to be even harder. With my aging carcass and a 50 pound backpack, I made the hard climb DOWN 2000 feet to the proper location having started at about 9200 feet.

I pitched a pup tent about 20 feet away from a tree, had dinner from a can and admired the celestial view until I was ready to go to sleep.

In the tent and getting ready to doze off, I noted the distinct aroma of crap. I'd been told that bears always smell this bad and I became alert to the idea I might have company. The smell kept getting stronger and stronger. I had a gun in my backpack and I calculated the odds of me getting to it before the bear got to me. I decided it was better to play possum and wait it out.
The smell got so bad my eyes were watering and I 'knew' the bear had to have been almost on top of the tent. Finally, I couldn't take it anymore. I popped the flap to the tent and stuck my head out.

Clean air. Yet, I didn't hear a bear nor did I see one.

Then it occurred to me where the rancid smell was coming from. It was ME! I had been gassing up the tent also taking note that my dinner had been a can of beans.

Now, for those who don't know me, I don't favor a gun but in going into the outback where there are bears and big cats, I don't see myself as wanting to be stupid either.
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In the spring time, there is a rancher who is allowed to graze his cattle in the Keep. I had taken a small bike into the lair with hopes of being able to use it in the keep. I got it stuck and had to hoof it out of there trying to make it back before nightfall.

As I did, I came upon a bull and four cows. The bull squared off with me on the path, put his head down and scraped one foot on the ground. He was giving me fair warning he was about to charge.

I froze in my tracks, looked around for a tree or something I could get behind (or up). There wasn't anything close and I knew the bull could run me down before I got to any cover. Then, in one of those soul inspired moments, I used the Indian sign for ' go in peace', motioning my left hand in a gliding movement. THE BULL SAID - OK - and he left taking his cows with him. As soon as they cleared the trail - I continued my journey.
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I did have a bear encounter In the lair. I was with another person and we were talking. The bear followed the only trail in there (the same one we'd used) and he was coming in as we were going out. Fortunately, he was of mild temperment and didn't want anything to do with us and headed down the mountain giving us room to pass. He'd been in the area scarfing on berries.
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I was in the Lair one day and Old One showed up in a Defiant in 4d. The birds saw the ship and thought it was a predator.
Hundreds of sparrows came out of nowhere in a group and approached the ship. The would go from a small 'ball' and expand rapidly to an emorous structureand then back again to the ball. They were trying to scare the predator out of the area.
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Finally, I had a Father moment with two small birds about the size of sparrows. On the day I first saw the City, I was going up a steep slope being led by the two birds. They'd fly ahead, perch and wait for me to catch up. If I turned in a wrong direction, they'd start yelling at me. I saw what was going on so I listened to the birds. Amazingly, when I caught up to them, they'd not fly off and I was only a couple of feet from them while they looked at me with this expression that said, 'we can't believe you're this stupid'.

When I reached the top - where they wanted me to be - they flew off and I continued. I got to a vista point where I could see the city and another bird came into play - an eagle. It circled the city three times and then made a beeline towards me passing very close to my location. I was hoping to be graced with a feather. Such was not the case.

It's been my experience that animals tune in very quickly on issues of soul and are usually agreeable to this. Now, while birds don't have souls, they know good from bad and are willing to cooperate even with a man whom they'd ordinarily avoid.