All Thanks to Theodore
All Thanks to Theodore
Author: Elle A. H.
Chapter 1: Fields of Brown

Silence: the absence of sound.

It's supposed to be peaceful, tranquil, calming. To ease the mind and body into secure relaxation, free of worries and strife.

But I am a firm believer in context.

And as I stared out across the fields of brown, I longed only for any sound of life. The chirp of a cricket, the buzz of a bumblebee or the whisper of swaying grass in a gentle breeze.

But there was only silence. And it certainly did not bring me any peace.

I tilted my head back, taking a deep breath and taking a second to close my eyes and escape. But my lungs soon filled with the dust and fragments of dried up debris that hung in a thick haze in the air, flaked up off the ground by even the slightest of winds.

So like an itch at the back of my throat, the coarse reality refused to be forgotten.

I walked out further into the wasteland, plucking at shards of shrivelled crop that stuck out of the ground, jagged and deformed, drained completely of life. The once lush foliage was now powdery and brittle between my fingers, it's dry rigid spikes digging into my skin before crumbling like sand to my feet, coating my shoes in a thin layer of pale dust.

The first sign of trouble had been the autumn storms that brought us the battering winds and biblical floods, saturating the landscape with suffocating churns of mud. Then December gave us a stubborn winter with frosts that clung to the fields every dawn until we rolled well into spring. But even as the cold subsided, May and June refused to have mercy as the drifting clouds above us dissolved, leaving a vast scape of blue as the intense, uninterrupted heat of the sun scorched what little had persevered through everything else.

It'd been a month since the annual harvest day where all the pack would come together to bring in the year's yield.

But this year the fields had been abandoned, the hopeless crop left to rot and decay as the people shielded away in the forest, stretching the scraps of last years supplies as thinly as possible, clinging onto survival. But every day was more of a struggle than the last. Every day, the inevitable doom of starvation pulled stronger. Every day, we grew weaker and soon enough we'd be unable able to resist being dragged down into the darkness of death's jaws.

I sighed and looked out at the fields once more before, unable to take the hopelessness anymore, I decided to head home.

But as I turned,

from the corner of my eye I caught a little dash of black amongst the beige.

A small child watched me in the distance. Her raven hair hung messily across her face and in her left hand, she clung to a dirty rag doll.

I recognised her. She lived in a village not far from here but this was hardly a pleasant place for children to play.

"What are you doing here?" I asked her.

"I'm sorry Miss Brynn," she replied as I neared her, "I'm hungry and I thought maybe the harvest was finally ready."

I sighed and crouched down in front of her. She was four, maybe five, years old. How do explain a famine to a child that young?

"What is your name?" I asked.

"Penelope," she replied.

"The harvest won't be coming this year, Penelope," I said, holding her hand.

She looked up at me with large, round eyes as her eyebrows folded down and her lips creased with worry.

"Then what will we eat?" she asked.

I sighed and forced my mouth into a reassuring smile, "I don't know yet. But the Alpha, Luna and I will think of something."

I couldn't tell if I believed my own words.

The hopelessness that rendered my heart heavy and filled my mind with a sorrow frustration said I didn't. This had been looming over since last autumn and a solution was yet to grace us.

It would take a miracle to save us now.

But I couldn't convey my fear to any of my pack people, let alone a child. Morale was already at rock bottom and if all it took to ease a child just for a little while was a small display of misplaced hope, I was willing to sacrifice my honesty.

"For now," I said reaching into my pocket, "Have this."

I held out a small scrap of bread wrapped in a cloth. It was my breakfast, lunch and dinner for today but I could do without, especially if it meant a child could eat.

She smiled and took it gladly, "Thank you."

I patted her shoulder, "Now you better get home. Your Mother will be wondering where you are."

She nodded and scuttled away.

I stood up and glanced out at the lifelessness once more, desperately searching for even a hint of how to live up to the promise I just made. But my mind was just as spent as it had been for weeks.

We truly needed a miracle.

Comments (2)
goodnovel comment avatar
Gabby
I had this book saved forever but haven’t opened it. Mostly because there is no cover. Something, anything to make it stand out would help!
goodnovel comment avatar
Bella Jersey
Who’s the first book
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