On the other side of the forest, a good hour's journey away, Faith searched, oblivious to her daughter's dilemma. She'd been following her mate's scent ever since she left the cabin, tracking him through the trees until she got to the lake. Scowling she realised she'd been here only a few hours earlier with Tru, hunting the deer. Why would he come here? She thought, following the scent to the edge of the lake where it disappeared. Cursing she realised what he had done, he must've waded into the lake and when he got back out his smell was so diluted it was virtually undetectable.
Sighing she sat down, rolling up her torn pants until they were above her knee.
'He doesn't want to be found,' she thought, hissing in air as she stepped into the freezing water. 'So why am I still out here?'
There was no answer, at first at least. Then, after putting a second leg into the water, and wincing again at the temperature, the familiar voice spoke inside her head. "You know exactly why you are here Faith. To look for him."
"But I won't be able to find him," she said aloud, stopping and perching on the bank. "And I know I won't. He...he knows how to hide. He knows how to run." She shook her head from left to right, eyes squeezed shut. "By now he could have left the forest, he could be miles away." A dry laugh escaped her. "He's done it before, why not again?"
For a few seconds Faith was terrified the voice wouldn't produce an answer. But, of course, the voice didn't leave her hanging. "They were different circumstances, then Faith," It whispered. "You know this. Jake would never leave you alone again, not like that anyway. He probably needs some time alone, to think."
Faith opened her eyes. "You think so? So he'll be coming back?"
"Yes just give him some time."
She frowned, "So what should I do now? Go back? Or stay out here, looking for him?"
"I don't know Faith. That's your choice."
Biting her lip she shrugged, pushing herself into the water. "I'll look for him. Not much else I can do anyway."
The water rose up to just below her shoulders and she raised her arms, stumbling on the rocks at the bottom of the lake. She struggled to the nearest bank, crawling onto the dirt. Meticulously, she sniffed at the dirt, trying to pick up his scent but found nothing. Sighing she rolled on her back, leaning back on her hands. 'There's really no use in this. He won't let me find him.'
She stood up and went to the water, splashing in again. This time it wasn't quite as cold and she kept close to the bank and walked past the thick strain of trees.
"What am I going to do about Jake?" Faith asked as she trudged forward. "He still won't look at Tru. And he hasn't gone out hunting ever since..." she sighed deeply. "Well you know."