Ms. Williamson has been captivating the hearts of readers for decades. Her heroes are strong and daring while the antagonists, diabolical!
Momma Won’t Like This …
Early Monday morning finds Alberich Babler, Benjamin Townsend, Hunter McDonald, and Matthew Donahue on their journey to the Village of Krüger. Neither of the men knows what awaits them once they arrive at their destination. Nor do they know whether or not they will return to Stäfa alive or in a body bag.
“What can we really expect from this safari?” Benjamin finally breaks the tension and silence.
“The thrill of our lives!” Hunter answers.
“That’s easy for you to say, Mac. However, the rest of us have never faced extinction before.” Benjamin retorts.
“Nor are we facing it now!” Alberich corrects. “Each one of us is good at what we do. Just remember that and apply it to this situation.”
“I’ve never faced an adversary with ten-inch teeth before.” Ben laments.
“You want to bailout, buddy?” Matthew turns to look at his best friend and cohort.
“Not in your life. I’m just voicing what each of us is thinking—that’s all.” Ben replies, smiling.
“I hate to admit it, but you’re right.” Mac confesses and everyone looks at him in surprise then nod their heads in agreement.
“However, it is this awareness that guarantees our odds of survival. Only a fool would go trampling in when facing an adversary of this magnitude.” Alberich offers.
“How right you are.” Matt agrees. Then, the men slip back into silence observing the scenery and staying ever alert.
For The Moment …
Gerhardt is also up early, enjoying a rich cup of coffee and slaughtering a freshly made German Omelet (Bauernfruhstuck), some Dutch Babies (German Pancakes) and Sausages. Pushing back from the table, he expels a hardy belch.
“Sorry Leena but that was Großartig!” Gerhardt exclaims.
“No apologies needed dear.” Leena asserts. “You are going to need all your strength for today. I went out just for a bit this morning because I thought I saw a flash of something white near a large tree.”
“Leena! Don’t you dare go outside this early anymore! Not only is it extremely dangerous but it’s in violation of the curfew.” Gerhardt shouts.
“Calm down, dear! I didn’t go very far. I just wanted to verify what I saw from our bedroom window. I have no desire to be on der weiße or her cub’s menu.” Leena chuckles and retrieves Gerhardt’s plate from the table.
“I know. I’m just concern about this village. Yours is the first sighting in a while and people are beginning to get careless.” Gerhardt admonishes.
“I know dear but don’t you think—” Leena’s words are interrupted by a blood-curdling scream. Gerhardt almost knocks his chair over trying to getting to the back door with Leena closely following. He is just in time to see a huge tiger dragging a lifeless body into the forest.
“Horrible, just horrible!” Leena screams, watching as the white phantom vanishes into the forest.
“Who was that?” Gerhardt questions, not able to see much of the limp figure.
“From the little that I saw—I did not recognize the clothing or anything. It may have been another foolish hunter from Stäfa. I’ve noticed more of then around Hoffman’s.” Leena responds.
“Or from someplace else, Leena. Emerson tells me that he has observed more and more people from places outside of our surrounding area—even as far as Sweden and the United Kingdom!” Gerhardt explains.
“The United Kingdom?!” Leena is shocked.
“Ja, trophy hunters and exhibitionist! He said he overheard a couple of gentlemen saying how they would love to capture the cub alive.” Gerhardt shakes his head in total disbelief.
“This is insane, dear! Do they think that momma is going to just allow them to take her cub—especially after already losing one.” Leena adds.
“That’s the trouble, Leena. These people are not thinking. I’m afraid they don’t realize the severity of the entire situation. Anyway, Alberich and his group will be here soon and we can devise a plan to kill both animals.” Gerhardt asserts with determination.
“Just be careful, Gert. Whoever that poor soul was—this is definitely not the end of it.” Gerhardt puts his arm around Leena’s shoulder and both reenter the house. However, as soon as they enter the kitchen, the phone rings.
“Constable Bernstein, Adelberg here.” By the official way that Emerson is sounding, Gerhardt knows he’s not the bearer of good news.
“What’s the problem, Emerson?” Gerhardt replies, sounding like a man twice his years.
“One of the Swedish men—Frans Lindstrom wandered off early this morning to check on one of their traps. Before the others could stop him, der weiße Dämon’s cub was on top of him—tearing him to shreds.” Emerson relays.
“So that’s what happened. Leena and I just heard the scream. Where are the others?” Gerhardt inquires.
“They are with me at the polizeistation.” Emerson replies.
“Keep them there. I want to know everything that happened.” An annoyed Gerhardt slams the phone down and grabs his jacket.
“Again, please be careful, Gert. It seems that the cub is just as cunning as his momma. Bet they would make a simply marvelous coat.” Leena giggles.
“Better not let momma hear you say that Leena. Momma wouldn’t like it.” Gerhardt gives his wife an affectionate swap on the rear and then he is out the door.
In The Meantime ...
As Officer Babler and as his troupe reach the outskirts of Krüger, Hunter catches a glimpse of a huge white tiger with something that looks like a human arm in its mouth.
“Dammit!” Hunter swears aloud.
“What’s the problem?” Matthew responds from the front seat of one of the VLRA 2 Military Vehicles Alberich previously used in a former campaign.
“I think that momma has just been hunting. It looked very much like a human arm in her mouth.” Hunter acknowledges.
“How on earth can you tell from this distance? Besides, we’re moving pretty fast.” Matt reasons.
“Maybe so, but I have been around enough predators to recognize when one has a fresh kill. When you deal with explosives and other demolition equipment—you learn to have a sharp eye and notice things that may escape others.” Hunter asserts.
“Hmm.” Is all that Ben has to offer.
“We are almost there.” Alberich interjects. “If there has been another killing, Gerhardt will be able to give us the details.
“How much further is there to go?” Ben queries.
“It’s just over—” But before Alberich can finish his statement, something large and white runs right in front of the truck and is hit. There is a loud yelp. Alberich slams on the brakes of the heavy vehicle and all four men get out of the truck. They walk around to the back and see traces of blood on the ground.
“You must have hit the cub.” Matt offers.
“Momma is definitely not going to take this kindly.” Ben retorts.
“Yeah—we had better get back into the truck.” Hunter warns as each man looks in all directions, then slowly pile back into the vehicle.
“Das ist nicht gut —this is not good. We have a wounded cub and a momma that’s as verrückt wie die Hölle!” Alberich warns.
“Right—as mad as Hell.” Matt translates. Each man exchanges glances as Alberich starts up the truck.
From within the coverage of der weiße Wald, der weiße Dämon watches the VLRA 2 Military Truck as it drives off. The look on her face is not a pleasant one. No, indeed. Then she returns to her badly wounded cub. His right hind leg seems to be fractured and blood in flowing profusely. At this rate, the cub’s chances of making it through the night are doubtful. And now, many of the residents of Krüger!
To Be Continued ...
The Legend of White Forest 12
- The Legend of White Forest 12
The men from Stäfa have finally made it to the Village of Krüger but not without incident—they have accidently killed the cub of der weiße Dämon. How will she respond to this violation? That is yet to be seen!
© 2021 Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS
Jacqueline Williamson BBA MPA MS (author) from Memphis on April 14, 2021:
OK ... Lock the door, bar the windows and pray you don't have to get out at night!