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A Mika Moose Xmas: Chapter 3 A Mika Moose Xmas: Chapter 3
by Thanos K & Asa B
2006-12-10 11:01:48
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The wind was getting sharper. Its frozen teeth were biting straight through Mika’s thick fur, while Matti had puffed up his feathers the best he could. The only sound came from the crunch of lumbering footsteps in the snow and the occasional moan from the shivering bird. In the distance there appeared to be some shelter from the wind, but they had to reach it first. 

Mika could see the grey clouds in the north were steadily gaining weight and were preparing to dump fresh snow over the tracks they were following. Mika shivered, but not from the cold. He had always been fine with the sub-zero temperatures; it was the worsening condition of his sensitive friend that concerned him. Birds are not designed for Arctic winters, even though they can survive with the right preparations like a warm nest, Matti was certainly unprepared and this looked to be the coldest winter in Mika’s memory.

mika05_400_01“Of course!” Mika exclaimed and then held his breath in fear of Matti asking a new chapter of questions. Matti stirred, looked up and said, “Bless you!” Mika sighed with relief and returned to his thoughts. Of course, that’s how he first met Matti and lost his herd in the same moment. It had been during one of the first big snowstorms and his herd were trying to find some urgent shelter.

Mika had been concentrating on walking on the loose slippery snow, while large snowflakes were practising landing upon his nose, but were hitting every other part of his face forcing his eyes to be half-closed. It was near impossible to see further than a few meters and Mika, who was usually quite capable of finding tracks, couldn’t see anything on the whitening ground. He stopped for a moment to take a breath, shake his head clean from the snow and have a better look at what lay ahead when he saw something black in the snow.

When everything is pure white the sight of black object triggered even Mika’s curiosity. Upon reaching the black mass of feathers, he realised that it was a bird, a magpie to be precise. Mika leaned closer to the magpie and whispered, “Hello, can you hear me? Are you okay, friend?”

Mika had never spoken with a magpie before, nasty birds, very arrogant! Alwamika06_400_01ys keeping to their own and he knew for a fact that even the other birds didn’t like them much; a seagull he had once met told him that. The magpie moved. Mika positioned himself between the bird and the wind to give the frozen magpie some shelter. He moved his head close to the bird and gave it a nudge with his nose. The magpie opened his eyes and struggled to open his beak to talk, “Hhhhhow dddddoes mmmy hhhhair lllllook?”

For the next few hours Mika cared for the magpie and kept him warm by gently laying on top of him. The magpie ate the small insects that lived in Mika’s fur and eventually the bird gained enough strength to start asking questions. The night of that snowstorm had been the last time he had seen his herd and he had been trying to find them ever since, with some companionship in the shape of Matti.

Mika smiled at the memory and felt sorry for his little friend nestled on his back, ”How are you doing, Matti?” For a moment he didn’t hear anything and then, “It’s quite cold, isn’t Mika!” Mika put his head down and forced himself to increase his speed. They definitely needed to find a warm place and very soon. He checked the faint troll tracks to make sure that they hadn’t vanished yet, when he saw a fresh set of troll tracks in the snow and these had been made very recently.


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