Jim paused mid-sentence, his mind leaving Narnia behind. Georges words stirred a sense of excitement in him, as he thought back to the winter two years ago when his friend George was trapped in a cave while hunting his last big buck.
“I checked with Patrick, and he said it would be alright for you to go with me. We’ll take old Blue along as well.”
Blue was jumping up on the bottom rung of the ladder barking up a storm.
Jim had not been up to the cave and had only heard George telling him about it.
He stuck his head out of the treehouse window and gave George a big smile.
“Sounds like a great idea to me. I need a break from reading all my books and I would love to hike up to the cave!”
George felt a surge of excitement knowing he would get to spend the day in the woods with Jim. It also brought back some strong feelings about is ordeal on the mountain.
“I will stop by your house in the morning around 8:00. It should be a beautiful day in the mountains.”
“Okay,” said Jim, “as he shifted his mind back to Narnia.”
It was the end of June, and Jim was enjoying the carefree days of summer. His teacher at Windy Gap Middle School had introduced him to C.S.Lewis’ Narnia Chronicles. Since school was out, he could not put the book down. He hoped to read the whole series by summer’s end.
George was his dear friend, who unknowingly to Jim, was now being replaced by adolescent interests. Even so, he still enjoyed his time with him and Old Blue. Their hike up to the cave would be a great time to reconnect.
Jim rolled out of bed at 7:00 AM and went to the kitchen to pack a lunch for the hike. His mom greeted him warmly and helped him get two ham sandwiches, an apple, a granola bar, and two Hershey bars. He filled his boy scout canteen with water.
Patrick reminded him to take along his Leatherman multi-tool.
“You never know when you might need it.”
At 8:00, Jim heard Old George’s truck come rumbling down the gravel lane. He was out on the front porch before the truck even reached the gate. As the truck stopped, Jim hopped up onto the seat next to George and Old Blue. Blue barked a friendly welcome.
“Good morning, Jim,” greeted George, “looks like a beautiful day for a hike,”
“Good morning, George. It sure does,” Jim said, as he reached over and scratched Old Blue behind the ears. Old Blue edged closer and laid his head up on Jim’s leg.
Jim waved out the window as the old truck started down the lane.
Note: I decided to revisit my story of The Climb and have Old George and Jim go back up to the cave where George was trapped in a snowstorm while hunting. I will be doing several segments each day.