The young raven flew as fast as his wings could carry him, hoping to somehow shake his pursuer off. It was fear which drove him on. A kind of fear he had never experienced before in his life. A fear which increased the moment he heard the terrifying cry of his pursuer, who finally had managed to catch up with the raven.

A powerful blow was suddenly dealt into the raven's back, which in return cried out in pain and pummeled down to earth. It felt as though he had been slammed against a giant tree, and it was sheer luck that the raven managed to recover enough for him to beat with his wings and prevent the deathly impact with the ground. Now flying just above the treetops, the raven vainly tried to fly faster only to be rewarded by another blow into his back.

Crying out in pain, the raven quickly lost altitude again. This time however, he didn't recover. Instead, the raven slammed fully against a massive tree. He could clearly hear the audible crack and feel the agonising pain, as his left wing broke. Now weakened and nearly unconscious from the pain, the raven dropped onto the ground where he lay, unmoving. He gasped for breath for a few moments and tried to get up. He couldn't get further but halfway up, as a sharp kick was dealt into the ravens side. The kick was strong enough to slam him against the very same tree he had hit a few moments earlier.

Now, with his body nearly numb with pain, the raven allowed himself to slid down the tree onto the ground. This time however, he didn't try to get up. Instead, he merely whimpered and glanced up into the cruel eyes of a fish eagle. "Well, well, well. What have we here?" The fish eagle said rhetorically, examining her prey. "Please…" He whimpered only to be rewarded by another sharp kick into his side. The raven cried out in pain while the fish eagle planted her taloned feet onto the ravens chest. "Shut up, you...!" She cried, adding a little pressure which only caused the young raven to scream louder.

Near by in the woods, a young squirrel named Fendel looked up from his food foraging as he heard the cry of pain.  He dropped his basket and unslung his bow.  He jumped into a tree and started swinging, jumping and running nimbly along the upper tree level in search of  the beast in pain.

"Thinking you could just steal from me like that? You think I'd let you go so easily?" The eagle growled, hatred burning in her eyes. The raven shivered, trembled with fear, unable to do anything from beneath the eagle's mighty talon. His eyes darted around, desperatedly looking for help or some sort of escape. Though he wouldn't get very far with a broken wing and an angry fish eagle on his tail feathers.

TWAING

An arrow dug itself into the tree, it's shaft quivering a hairs breath from the eagles head. "Let the beast go, bird."

"Leave me, you insolent brat!" The fish eagle screamed, turning towards the squirrel. "Leave me so I can teach that vermin a lesson!" "Don't listen to her!" The raven shouted in desparation. "She's trying to kill me!"

With his bow bent to it's peak and his hand resting on his cheek, he shouted, "It makes little difference who it to blaim.  If the beast is vermin for what ever you accuse him, he has learned his lesson, if he is not, you have no right to attack a beast allready wounded in such a way."  He looked down the shaft into the fierce eyes of the fish eagle. "Release him.  If he tries to run, I have never missed.  Let me hear both sides of the matter."

The fish eagle bit back an insult and reluctantly released the raven, stepping away from him while eyeing him and the squirrel warily. It was obvious that she trusted neither of them. The raven however rolled onto his stomach and instantly backed away from the eagle until he pressed his body firmly against the tree that had broken his wing earlier. The broken limb hung down his side and he tried to shelter it from the eagles gaze as best as possible. "The spineless worm you see there…" The fish eagle began, pointing towards the raven. "Invaded my territory and even went as far as to steal the berries from one of the trees there." She spat, shooting a fierce glare at the raven. "I saw him doing that and hunted him down like the thief he is." She finished her explanation. The raven swallowed heavily. "I had no idea!" He quickly defended himself. "I didn't know it was her territory, let alone her berries... I just wanted to take a rest, when she came after me... I didn't meant to steal from her, honest!"

Fendel thought for a moment, the spoke. "If what the raven says is true,  he should not be punished further…" then as then added quickly in expectation of the eagle's responce said, "And if it was a lie that he did not know,  he had paid enough for those berries already.  He has learned his lession..."

The fish eagle growled fiercely, glaring daggers at the squirrels. "It is me who has been stolen from! I alone decide when that little piece of filth is punished enough!" She roared, taking a step towards the shivering, trembling raven.

This time, the arrow glazed the eagles leg, creating a small  cut that produced a small droplet of blood. "Stay away from the raven.  He stole some berries from your territory,  you have broken his wing.  He won't be able to fly for at least a week, thus he will have a hard enough time as it is to keep himself alive.  That is definitely punishment enough."  He shouted as he fitted another arrow to his bow.  He did not like where this was going.  He shared no love for ravens but his greatest love was justice and the raven, even if he had acted maliciously deserved no more justice.

The raven whimpered pitifully and tried to cover himself with his good wing as best as he could, trying to shield himself from the vengeful eagle. The fish eagle screeched at the wound and glared at the squirrel, pure hatred burning in her eyes. "I alone decide when that piece of #### has been punished enough…" She hissed threateningly, shooting a burning glare at the raven. "The tree climber can't protect you always... I will be back for you, thief... Don't think it's over..." She threatened, then flew off. The raven was still pressed himself against the ground, shielding himself with his wing. The small, pitch black bundle of feathers shivered, trembled even, emitting what sounded to be muffled whimpers and sobs.

The squirrel watched the eagle soar away, then rushed forward while pulling out a bag with bandages.  "All right, raven, I'm going to set your wing in a splint then your on your own."  he said as he grabed at sticks to use for the braces, constantly glancing at the skies in case the eagle should return.

The raven whimpered pitifully. "Please… You can't leave me... She'll be back... You heard her..." He said, fear in both his voice and tear streaked eyes. "Please... I'll do everything you want, just don't leave me here... Please"

Fendel finished the bining the wing and glanced back into the skies.  "That eagle will be back, that I am sure of…"  He looked down at the raven.  "There is a place I can take you to that will hide you from the eagle until you are well.  Follow me."  He turned and started walking to the south east, his bow out and aiming for the skies.

The raven nodded, getting shakily up to his feet. "Thank you…" He whispered softly, following the squirrel. "I... I won't forget that..."

"Best we hurry,  your eagle isn't the only enemy in this forest."  He said as he darted up into a tree.  "Just fallow me. "

The raven nodded hastily and got up to his feet. "Yes sir." He replied simply, ready to follow his saviour.

After they had traveled for a few minutes, they reached a thorn brush thicket.  It was an immence tangle of brown, dried, prickly vines that looked as though it was impregnable.    Fendel dropped silently from a near by tree and directed the raven a little to the left.  He reached down and grabbed what looked like a green ribben.  As he pulled the ribben up, the thick canvas of thorns lifted as well to reviel a small tunnel through the tangled mess.

"Just go strait though and you'll come to an open cavern."  Fendel said with his back turned to the raven, while he looked though.

"Yes sir, thank you sir." The raven nodded, obviously grateful for the help the squirrel provided. He took a step into the cavern, then turned around, looking at the squirrel somewhat shyly. "Uh… Will you be coming to, sir?"

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