The wolves lay huddled against each other, seeking shelter under a couple of leafy trees. Though none of them slept, they did not say a word: each and every one of them was ensconced in their own morose thoughts. Finally, the rising sun burned against their closed eyes and they all rose, stretching, to face another day.
It had been a week since Eve proposed to contact the Great Devil Himself, but they had since had no success. They had tried everything. The land surrounding them had become further dishevelled since their plan had been put in place: already, they had burrowed a deep hole, expecting – as in the tales which God had relayed to them – to find the Devil in the heart of the world. But when their whiskers began to curl against the heat of the stone surrounding them, they realised it was no use: they would surely die before even glimpsing Him. Brambles and twigs had been collected and the wolves had created a fire, attempting to re-create the heat of Hell. But the Devil was nowhere to be seen.
Already, they were on the brink of abandoning their plan, beginning to believe that the Devil was a mere figment of God’s imagination so as to supply them with false hope. Except, of course, for Eve, who glared at any of the wolves who expelled an unsatisfied sigh (which was fairly often), quelling the sound simply by the way she pursed her lips and knitted her brows, making her eyes appear even more sunken in her gaunt face. She had only slept a couple of hours each night and for the most part, sat on the cold ground at night staring directly at the moon. She had wracked her brains for some sort of information God may have fed to her with regard to the Devil, but nothing she remembered seemed relevant to how they could contact Him. Still, she did not give up. She felt that God had personally hurt her, especially since Adam had lay sleeping heavily for the duration of time they had been placed in the Fortress of Nede. Eve had shook him until she herself became dizzy by the gesture; had fed him concoctions foraged from the surrounding wildlife for sustenance; had tickled her nose against his, searching for the smallest sign of lucidity in his fatigued body. But it was no use. Her only option now was to continue hunting for the Devil.
Sitting atop a small mound, Eve swayed slightly in the cool breeze, the dark circles under her eyes making her look further harrowed by the experiences she faced. Her brain was the most active part of her body – it never appeared to cease its voyage – but still no answers appeared before her. She did not even notice the fog which gently wrapped around her frame, or the precipitation which trickled down her paws into the muddy ground she sat perched upon. She only truly became aware of her surroundings when she noticed something watching her. Her eyes searched the landscape quickly, expecting to find a large predator readying himself to pounce upon her fragile body. She finally caught sight of the animal before her and almost let out a snort of derision when she realised what it was. Its small figure was almost lost to the bushes and brambles which acted as its backdrop, even though its fluffy fur was a pure white; stark against the grey days which constantly greeted Eve. She watched as the creature hopped towards her, its pink nose twitching and scut wriggling happily.
It appears blissfully unaware of its surroundings; doesn’t even notice the mud which has begun to envelope its soft little paws… Eve thought, entranced by the animal’s beauty. Why are the purest always the most alluring? Perhaps I was once that attractive – naive and carefree. She stared into the distance, becoming lost once more in her constant battle to contact the Devil. Her thoughts did not cease until the little rabbit before her rubbed its nose against her front paw, causing her whole body to jump so that she almost stepped upon the beast before her.
‘What are you doing here, little one?’ She whispered, bowing her head closer to the creature’s frame.
‘I’ve come to give you guidance. You wish to seek out the Almighty Devil? I shall lead you to Him – shall protect you along the way – though I cannot guarantee your defence when you finally come tête-à-tête with His indomitable character.’ It did not speak in a voice which suited its small frame, but rather in the lazy intonation of a creature that is unafraid of any possible dilemmas it may face throughout life.
Turning swiftly before Eve could so much as consider how to reply, it headed towards the other wolves, pausing every few feet to sniff the air solemnly. Eve followed in a heavy daze, pondering on whether or not she was hallucinating after such a meagre amount of sleep.
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