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7
Attrition

B2MeM Challenge: O68: Rangers of the North: Fell Winter; Economy: War
Format: drabble
Genre: gapfiller
Rating: K+
Characters: Arador, OMC Rangers and hobbits and wolves, oh my!
Summary: Unquiet on the western front.


~~~

Attrition

They’d begged refuge in the Marish – almost the only place that could’ve housed Rangers. Days hobbits and Rangers live cheek to jowl, ere digging out.

Arador wonders how many Rangers survived the early cold. For however many, they must suffice: wolves appear. Arador sees one one evening, white on white, invisible, save for the eyes.

The hunt is deadly. Icy bogs are treacherous, as are cold, hunger, exhaustion: blood darkens the snow, beautiful and obscene.

His host, Ando, distressed by the bodies, protests: “This ain’t natural!”

War isn’t. Arador sighs, counts heads, decides. “Go home, Ando. We’ll keep watch tonight.”

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