Bloodlines of the Ancient Pantheons Chapter 31: XXXI. The Bread
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He kept walking. Gradually his feet began to sink into a thick layer of snow. In front of him, he could barely distinguish the trail due to thick fog, typical of the peaks of the mountains.
Short reminiscences of the geology and geography lessons of when he was on earth made room among his memories.
It had to be close.
After about two hours of walking from the farm, he caught a pile of equidimensional rocks piled between two trees.
"Finally!" thought Dag.
It had to be the stone blocks Magni was talking about.
He approached and looking better he made sure they were cubic-shaped rocks, weighing about 10 kilos each and with a thick rope tied on each of them.
He lowered himself and picked up one, to tie it to his ankle.
Once he did that, he tried to move his leg simulating a walk. With the rock tied on it, the movements were much slower: the weight of the anklet combined with the height of the snow on the ground made the movements extremely complex.
As Dag tried to tie a rock to the other ankle, he heard a sound coming from the bushes in front of him.
He closed his eyes and tried to concentrate as he had done in the cave when he faced the undead.
He took a wide breath, inhaled and then exhaled deeply.
A sound of breath echoed through the branches of the bushes: it came from below, the height was not that of a human being. It seemed to come from a beast, something that walked on all fours.
And that something was slowly advancing towards him!
The sound kept getting closer and closer, but Dag could not estimate how many meters he was. He just knew he was there, and he had to be careful.
He slowly loosened his anklet and slightly pulled the sword out of the strap behind his shoulders. In the extraction, the cold wind hit the blade, which emitted a sharp sound.
The noises coming in front of Dag stopped all of a sudden.
The beast was closer, and the only sound coming from that direction was the slow sinking of claws into the snow. Whatever it was, it must have stopped: it sank in the snow because of its weight.
Dag continued to concentrate, pointing his sword at the bushes in front of him, but could not distinguish those noises between the sounds of the wind, like a blizzard.
Suddenly, a figure leapt out of the plants, attacking him.
It was a wolf!
Dag managed to dodge the blow and drove away the wild beast with his hand, throwing it a few
It was a huge white wolf, with a dark gray snout. From his clenched teeth and growl, he did not seem to have good intentions.
The wolf lunged back at Dag, trying to bite his legs, but Dag managed once again to dodge the blow and hit him on the back.
The beast recoiled as if he understood Dag's superiority.
He began to howl and in the meantime, Dag focused on looking into his eyes. They were normal amber eyes, they weren't purple.
He must have been a real wolf or, at the very least, not controlled by some inhuman being like the crows who attacked him.
He remembered having a piece of bread in his pocket and slowly tried to take it off, slowly unbuckled the bag.
The wolf stopped and began staring at him, turning his head slightly.
Dag held out his arm to the wolf holding the piece of bread in his hand.
He stepped forward and the beast stepped back.
He left the bread on the ground, in the snow before him, and walked away toward the pile of sass.
The wolf slowly approached the food with a curved trajectory, looking at Dag with the tail of his eye, ready to attack him in case he got closer.
Dag stood still to watch the scene.
When it was close enough, the wolf quickly seized the bread and fled back into the forest.
Dag could sense the wolf's run, which was actually moving away from him. The danger had escaped.
He grabbed four stone blocks and tied them to his ankles and wrists.
An additional 40 kilos total weighed on him, in addition to his body weight, that of the mountain air and that of the snow that completely covered his feet.
Making sure he put the sword back in his place, he began to descend down the same path.
After almost an hour, Dag arrived at the clearing.
The temptation to rest was strong, but he knew that he was not even halfway through the course and that if he stopped, he probably would not be able to complete the first part of training before the arrival of his master.
He continued on the descent. The last stretch, the one from the clearing to the farm and then to the cave, was the steepest.
Dag knew that the descent was the easiest part of the route, but he was still very fatigued.
After the descent, he would have to repeat the path backwards.
He continued without hesitation to descend, passed the farm and finally arrived at the exit of the cave. From the top to the lowest point, it took about three hours.
He paused for a moment, sitting on the ground, slightly loosening the ropes that wrapped around his wrists. These were reddened with minor wounds at the imprint of the ropes.
Sad with the pain, Dag again wore the weights on his wrists and resumed walking, climbing up the path. His only thought was to complete the training and meet the expectations of his master.
The ascent took longer than the descent. After almost 4 hours he got to the top and finally got off the weights.
Both his wrists and ankles were bruised and bleeding. They were burning to the touch.
The morning had passed and the sun was high in the sky, rising from the clouds illuminating the mountain.
Despite its heat, the snow remained heavy on the ground.
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