The Hungry Bear

by Eric Drewes

There once was a bear who lived in a small forest outside of a small village on the far side of the world. He loved to wander around the woods and chat idly with all of his animal pals. After a long afternoon of socializing he would go home to his cave and relax with a jar of honey. This was his favorite part of the day.

One such afternoon ended later that usual (his friend, the badger, had quite a long tale to tell him!) and the sun had already arched downward and filled the sky with a murky purple light by the time he arrived at his home. He entered his cave, lit a candle and made his way to the pantry when he noticed the door to it was slightly ajar. It was with much concern that he moved forward and looked into the cupboards.

Everything was gone. His honey was gone!

The bear's eyes narrowed and his pupils turned blood red.

"Who stole my honey?" he asked with a snarl.

He stood tall on his hind legs and bellowed again, "WHO STOLE MY HONEY?"

Of course, there was no answer.

In a rage he careened out of the cave and started sniffing for clues to where his stash went.

His old friends Deer and Groundhog approached him to ask what the matter was. The bear turned on Deer and decapitated him with one might swipe of his claws while the groundhog recoiled in terror. Groundhog turned tail to run but his leathery feet lacked the traction required to get a decent start and in an instant, Bear was upon him. One vicious bite crushed his spine and he fell limp and lifeless. Quickly Bear discarded him to the side.

Foam began to form around Bear's mouth and he snarled and started on his search again. A strong breeze blew in and gave him a whiff something that smelled like his honey. At last he would have satisfaction. He began towards the direction of the smell and it grew stronger and stronger. The smell led him to the small glade at the center of the forest. He made his way through a break in the treeline to find...

...a large banner that said, "HAPPY BIRTHDAY BEAR!" with picnic tables set up and a virtual smorgasboard of honey related treats and deserts. All his friends cheered when they saw him and their joy brought Bear out of his rage. The redness faded from his eyes and he joined the delightful feast prepared in his honor. The honey treats were delicious and the night ended with full bellies and a lot of heartwarming laughter. He returned home with a cart loaded up with the left-over honey that Miss Owl borrowed to make the feast. All in all, it was a wonderful evening.


The End

Epilogue: Later that night, Bear's eyes opened in abject horror. He had the sense something was wrong, but he couldn't place why. Attributing the feeling to a bad dream, he rolled over and went back to his bear-y slumber.