Ned settled down for the night. He built a fire and warmed his hands. Looking through his crest of wolf teeth, the darkened waters were foreboding. He had moved fast over the hills and his map reading was spot on. Gripping his fur clothing, Ned worried about that shape moving over the moorland. It was not a Malaxian unit, but it may have been a scout. That would be a big problem. On the death march, when the Malaxians made camp, he watched the scouts. They were nasty individuals and tended to stick together. One in particular was an archer who used to sharpen his knife and stare at Ned. Remembering it sent a shiver down his spine.
Ned shook his head and thought about his time on the moors and hills. He preferred it in the woodland. And the smell of pine was a change from the desolate open land. Wind cut through the canopy above, making the needles quiver. The trees afforded shelter and enough cover to hide. It made him feel safer. Night-time in the woods was his preferred existence now. The fire crackled and flames struck upwards. An owl hooted. Moonlight cast its dull blueness over the deep waters beyond. Its reflection streaked across the lake. Toward the South, in the blackness, he could hear water rushing over rocks. Trees creaked and groaned on the wooded hill behind. The forest was alive. A howl shook him from an inner peace. Wolves were out there. And not far away by the sound of it.