THE NEXT STEP (18)

‘Do you think that we are utterly lost?’ She asked Darky. ‘I can’t see a single soul and wouldn’t this be the sort of place where others would wait for someone who has been left behind?

’ Darky nodded. ‘You may well be right. The others probably took the other path.’ He sighed and then looked up at her with a smile spreading across his face. ‘At least we can rest in the hut for a while. I have some snacks in my backpack. And look at those clouds. I think it might rain soon. It is better to let the rain pass and then we can head back down the mountain.’

Laura shrugged. What else was there to do? ‘Sounds good to me.’ They walked over to the hut and peaked inside. There was nothing else in there except a bench. When you sat on it, you had a beautiful view of Taipei through the hut door.

‘Look at that’, Darky exclaimed. ‘At least we get the best view of Taipei from here.’ True enough, Laura thought as she sat on the bench. They were able to see the whole of Taipei and the surrounding mountains. Only now Laura realised how high up they had in fact hiked.

Darky took out a plastic bag from his rucksack and opened in. He fished out small packets of oriental snack. ‘There is some sesame bars and seaweed rolls. I also have some peanuts and rice crackers. Take whatever you like.’

Laura took a seaweed roll. She had become fond of the soft rice and the crunchy seaweed. ‘There is only a couple of clouds, so I would think that in about fifteen minutes we can head back down the slope’, Darky said.

As soon as he tucked into a sesame bar, the rain drops started falling. The rain grew heavy, but Laura also knew that it would end within minutes. They sat listening to the sound of the rain drops on the roof of the hut and munching on their snacks.

Laura was starting to feel drowsy. ‘I guess the exercise and the fresh air are taking their toll’, she thought as her eyes starting drooping. But suddenly she was wide awake.

‘Did you see that, Darky?’ she whispered and pointed towards the back of the hut. The branches of the bushes behind the hut were moving. ‘Did you see someone looking at us from behind the bushes?’ Darky looked at the direction that she was pointing at.

The branches moved again. There was definitely someone hiding behind the bush. Just as Darky was getting up from the bench and heading towards the bush, a tiny woman stepped to the side of the bush. Her face was painted with different colours and she was wearing a colourful dress. She bowed towards Laura and Darky, and then ran off before either of them could react.

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Author: Buna School of Music

New music academy and teacher training centre in Kampala, Uganda. For more information, please see: www.https://bunaschoolofmusic.wordpress.com/

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