Angel of Shadow
“Do we have to go back?”
“No way. We’re not going to be stopped by a few branches,” I said. Keeping one hand on his back, I reached over him and broke off a few more of the limbs that were directly in our way. I grabbed a thicker branch for balance and stepped around Bram, positioning myself in front of him. “I’m going to sit down here. Just put your arms around my neck and your legs around my middle, okay?”
I lowered myself onto the log and he obeyed silently. I could feel his small frame quivering as he latched onto my back. “Stop looking down,” I told him. “It’ll be easier.”
“How’d you know?”
“That you were looking down?” I felt him nod his head against my back and I laughed quietly. “You know you’ve been staring down there almost constantly. It wasn’t hard to guess.”
“Well,” he said in a soft voice, “it’s scary down there.”
“I know, kiddo.”
“And,” he continued, his voice even quieter, as though he hoped it would fade into nothingness, “your Shadow is down there.”
I stilled. “You don’t ever have to worry about my Shadow. I control it … and I wouldn’t hurt you with it, Bram.”
“Yeah. Alright,” he said softly.
I couldn’t see the expression on his face, but he sounded like he believed me—a tentative belief, perhaps, but it would do.