Once upon a time
there lives a girl named Red. She lives in a small village with her mother who is an herbalist.
One day her mother asks Red to take the baked cookies, milk and herbal medicine to her grandmother’s house.
It seems that her grandmother is sick and needs a remedy to cure her cold. So, Red set off as soon as possible,
into the warm summer morning, wearing her long red cape that her grandmother had given her for her sixteenth birthday.
Red has been to her grandmother’s house several times. On her visits, she often helps her grandmother
tend the beautiful flower garden. Red knows almost all the ways to get to her grandmother’s house but
today Red felt a bit adventurous and decides to take a route that she’s never taken before.
As Red was traveling on the unfamiliar route, she suddenly arrives at a fork in the road.
One of the roads takes her back to a familiar route to her grandmother’s and the other she hasn’t explored yet.
As Red ponders on what road to take, she suddenly hears a noise coming from the unknown path.
Red’s curiosity gets the better of her and she
decides to go towards the gunshots.
Hunters are common around the woods. Most hunt livestock, but there are those who hunt greater prey.
As she steadily travels by, she notices more thickness of trees here than the other paths.
The road gleamed with heavy shadows with little light glistening through.
Shortly after, she hears movement behind a few bushes. Red slowly approaches and on the other side of
the bush was a clearing in the woods with a man hovering over what looks to be a dead wolf.
The Huntsman wore a cape of wolf skin and around his body is a rifle.
The Huntsman began skinning the wolf. Red watches in awe since she hasn’t been this close to seeing a wolf being skinned before.
Red is thinking of approaching the Huntsman, though, the man seems busy and probably wants to be left alone.
Red decides she wants to meet the Huntsman.
“Good morning Huntsman,” Red says as she approaches the Huntsman from behind.
“What are you up to,”
she asks peering over the Huntsman’s shoulder.
The Huntsman looks over at Red pleasantly surprised to see a girl all alone in the woods.
The Huntsman smiles at Red then turns his head away and continues to what he was doing.
“Good morning Red. I am hunting wolves today,” answers the Huntsman.
“Why is that,” Red asks crouching on the side of the Huntsman watching closely.
The Huntsman pauses and looks at her with a stern look.
“Red, heed this warning,” he began, “all wolves are bad.”
Red felt his words to be half true because she tries to find good in all people until proven otherwise.
Red nods looking at the Huntsman’s ashy green eyes.
“I will heed your warning Huntsman. Perhaps, could you teach me how to shoot like you. I would also like
to learn to hunt wolves.”
The Huntsman looks over towards Red again but this time in shock. For a moment, he stares at her determined face, then nods and says,
“I cannot say no to someone who wants to protect themselves. Of course, I will teach you how to shoot.
But this goes without saying Red. Only use this skill to shoot when you are in absolute danger.”
Red nods to his request as she gleam happily. The next hour, Red undergoes shooting training.
Being told to aim at the wolves’ heart and head. Red quickly picks up the skill set to shoot and gains a new skill.
“You are a very quick learner Red, as my first disciple, take this,”
the Huntsman says as he hands Red something slightly wrapped in a cloth.
The Huntsman also gives Red a gun strap to hold the revolver in. She wraps the gun strap around her waist
and carefully places the revolver near her left hip. The girl bows and thanks the Huntsman for his generosity
and gives him the cookies she had in her basket. They tell each other their goodbyes and Red continues
on with her adventure to her grandmother’s house.
The path grew darker as the sun became hidden behind the thick layers of trees above her. As Red continues to meander onwards, the road became narrower and many leaves covered the ground.
It seems as if not many people traveled through this passage. It was a longer route towards her grandmother’s
village than she expected, but Red knew that the paths connected with each other eventually.
In the meantime, a greedy wolf is looking for its new prey and fortunately for him, he sees Red walking by.
Licking his lips, he starts walking towards Red. In the corner of Red’s eye, she
notices the wolf. She turns around and begins to feel extremely uncomfortable.
The greedy wolf is staring at her hungrily and an immediate sense of danger runs through her veins.
“Where are you heading to Red,” the wolf asks as he finally catches up to her, walking side by side with her now.
Red pauses for a moment and then states, “Not far.”
“It seems you are heading to your grandmother’s house, I also have business I have to attend to over there.
Why not I accompany you.”
“I am faring well on my own, thank you,” Red answers him with a stoic tone.
“Now, now, don’t be such a lone wolf. It’s better to travel with company. But say, I have been craving for some cookies.
If you have some, I could possibly go my own way.”
Red shakes her head solemnly. She had given the cookies to the Huntsman prior as a generous gift for teaching her to
shoot. The wolf licks his lips and smiles wickedly.
“Well what a shame that is. But that’s alright, there is plenty of food in the village.”
Red didn’t want to talk much longer. Instead she was planning ahead on her next steps to get away from the
wolf as soon as possible. Fortunately, the wolf and Red reaches another clearing and, in the area, is a
beautiful open garden of flowers and herbs all around. The sun shines beautifully upon the garden and Red
stares in awe.
“I’m going to look at the flowers and pick some for my grandmother. Could you wait for me?” The wolf nods
and patiently waits for Red as she begins plucking flowers for her grandmother. As she was plucking a flower,
a sleeping herb was hidden near it.