The Stranger: Visitations

In the fourth story in this series, Stranger seems to be finally getting his life on track. Then he is visited by friends and enemies from his past that will cause him much happiness and much pain. New tragedies will test even his great strength. Add to this the fact that old age is finally catching up with him. All of these problems will force Stranger to turn to new and old sources for help to cope with a world seemingly spinning out of control.

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12. Epilogue

 

 

Year 7

Both he and Bambi stood in the meadow in the early spring evening. In front of them stood several deer each looking eager to begin. Felon was standing on the end. Standing next to him was Young Claris. Stabo’s other daughters Karlene and Charlene stood next to them with Koren. Young Bambi stood in the middle along with his older sister Young Faline. Balo’s child Delon stood next to her and his son Stuben stood at the other end. He turned to face Bambi.

“It begins again my friend,” he said affectionately.

“Maybe for the last time,” Bambi uttered.

“That no one can say,” he told him. He then turned to face the others.

“You have all come here to learn how to be herd leaders,” he told the group. “All of you have already had some training over the winter; but your real training begins now. This is when you start to use the things we have taught you. You are learning how to help herd leaders and maybe one day be a herd leader. Being herd leader is the greatest responsibly any deer can receive. Most deer cannot do it. Others try and rule through might alone without any thinking about the herd. In the end the entire herd suffers for it. What we will teach you will be hard and long. If you learn it, you can be a great help to the other deer in the forests.”

“That is the important thing, you will be a help to the other deer,” Bambi went on. “This is not about you or even your family. It is about the rest of the deer. That is why Balo and Stena went back to my forest, to help, not to be leaders.”

With that Bambi stopped and got extremely serious. “What we teach you may end up causing you pain. It may even cause your death.” With that Bambi stopped for a moment to swallow hard and took a deep breath. “You must remember it is about the other deer, keeping them healthy, keeping them alive.”

With that Bambi paused for a second before adding, “If this is what you want to do, Stranger and I will teach you for as long as we can. You in turn must teach those who come after you because Stranger and I will not be here forever. If there are any of you who have doubts, let me hear them now.”

They all stood mute. They looked ready. They looked eager to start.

“Come with me” he said and walked to the far end of the meadow to a certain spot.

“All of you turn and face the Man cave,” he ordered them.

They all did it immediately.

“Now what do you feel……?”

The lesson went on until late and the lesser light was ready to set. By then he could tell they were tired. Well soon they would be more than tired. “Very well but I want to show you one more thing tonight. I know what most of you have learned. You must be ready to unlearn many things like this.”

He bleated once and immediately a large back mound moved quickly down the hill. The scent of a bear was soon evident. The deer in front of them took off into the meadow with the exception of two. Young Claris and Stuben stood still in place seeming to invite death with Bambi and him. The bear stopped about five lengths away and looked at the two young deer.

“You did not run from me. That is foolish,” he growled.

“From any other bear except you, yes,” Young Claris said and actually smiled at the bear.

Stuben also smiled broadly. “Besides, if there is one thing I have learned, is that my Father and Bambi are not going to stand still and let a bear eat them. My Father told me stories about you. I know you are his friend. You are my friend if you wish it.”

“Intelligent,” the bear said with admiration. “Then again I do know your Fathers and your Father’s Fathers. I am not displeased. I look forward to watching you make life better in the forest for all animals like Bambi and Stranger have done. All of you should go now. Perhaps we will meet again, but ask Stranger and Bambi before any of you come to see me.”

The two of them left to join the others only now coming together on the other end of the meadow.

“I was right about your purpose here,” the bear said with affection.”You are here to teach others how to make life better in the forests. I wish I could do that.”

“My friend, you just have,” he said to the bear with his own smile.

With that the bear went back to his den and Bambi and he crossed the meadow to talk to the others. It was going to be a busy season.

The End

For Now

 

 

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