Soon the last of the sunlight faded, and Gil had to pay more attention to where he put his feet. It wasn’t as dark as last time though; just as the sun went down, the moon was rising opposite. As it crept above the horizon, he had less trouble seeing where he was going.
Much less trouble. In fact, he could see in the moonlight as well as he had during the day, if not better. Not only could he keep up with Alfvin’s pace, he found himself out ahead at times. Every time they had to stop to mark another tree, he felt impatient. It felt good to run, and he was feeling strong. He didn’t want to stop, or plan, or talk. This night was for running free.
The next time Alfvin stopped to mark their path, he felt so frustrated that he prowled in circles while he waited, practically whining to be on the move again. Somewhere inside of him, he knew that wasn’t the was he had expected to be acting.
Just when he thought Alfvin was ready to resume their journey, he was disappointed. Alfvin remained stationary, addressing him in a stern tone of voice.
“Gilfrid! Come here. Give me the spear and the bag.”
Gil was happy not to have to carry them any more.
“Now take off your clothes and give them to me.”
Gil was confused now. It seemed like quite an unusual request. On the other hand, it also felt like a good idea.
“I trust that you shall remain friendly tonight, but if I am mistaken… well, that is what spears are made for. I will do my best not to harm you, and I think my skills should be sufficient to keep you from harming me. You know the village we are travelling to; in the morning you can find me camped nearby. You will have all day to find me. But for now, I know you need to run wild.”
And under the light of the rising full moon, Gil did exactly that.