Part 25: A Prickly Escape
As soon as Mr. Betts fell asleep at their small camp, Charlie made her move. She quietly tiptoed over to his suitcase, and pulled Daisy out from the bottle. Setting in the small decoy, she closed the suitcase and looked around for her next move. A voice softly whispered from the distance, “the bushes.”
Right. Her mysterious shadow friend was somewhere nearby.
Charlie looked at the thick, prickly bushes just beyond the camp. There was a small gap, just enough for her to fit through on the bottom. Tiptoeing away from Mr. Betts, Charlie hid Daisy in her sweater, and walked over to the bushes. She crawled in, needles scratching her cheeks and pulling at her sweater. She broke through the last patch of bushes, greeted by an old sign post with ivy growing up the side, pointing down a worn pathway.
She pulled herself out of the bushes, and sprinted down the path. For a moment, she started skipping, smiling as she ran through the forest. The smile slipped away as Charlie approached an old stone archway, with a winding wooden staircase leading up into a denser forest.
Daisy climbed onto her shoulder, and looked up at Charlie. “What do ya think?”
“I think I know this place,” Charlie whispered. She gripped the old handrail, and started to climb.