Diary of a Fox - Chapter 0
Within a small room, a candle on the desk glimmered upon a pair of siblings sitting at the edge of the table.
Through the room’s window, a dark, cloudless starry night could be seen. It was as if it came straight out of a painting, covered in thousands of stars that dimly lit the sky. Yet, the pair focused on something else, a small book held by one of them.
The larger figure had a soothing voice while reading the lines in the book, just as one would with a story…
“Once upon a time, there was a young magical fox. He was born without parents or kin but lived in a den with traces of its previous owners.”
“Every day, he would leave his safe place to go out scavenging, avoiding predators who could endanger his life. He was too small and young to put up a fight.”
“He survived mostly on berries and small fruits during his childhood. Small rodents were simply too agile for him, while the slower ones had their own ways to escape. He really enjoyed those childlike days.”
A faint giggle from the smaller figure resounded throughout the room, but the larger figure continued reading the story.
“As he grew older, he adventured further, maybe finding a new river, or perhaps a new spot. The little fox started to grow confident, beginning to experience new things and expand his minuscule world… You look like you’re about to fall asleep.” The figure reading looked to his right and commented.
“Boo~ I’m not!” A childish voice replied. “I want to hear the rest of the story!”
The larger figure placed its hand on the smaller figure’s head and ruffled their hair. “Okay, okay.” They closed their eyes, inhaled deeply, and continued reading the book as they exhaled.
“Years passed by, and the fox was no longer a pup. Now that he had grown, he decided to go on an adventure and—”
“Ehhh?! You’re skipping something, aren’t you?! You definitely are!” The childish voice interrupted.
“If I were to describe all of his life, wouldn’t I take forever?” The larger figure replied with a troubled smile. “After all, don’t you know to know what happened to the princess?”
“A princess? Is there a princess?!”
The larger figure shrugged, and with a smirk, vaguely replied, “Maybe there is, maybe there isn’t.”
“Boo.” The child hit them lightly. “Big Brother always does this! Hmph!”
“Ouch, ow. It hurts.” The brother said, faking the pain.
“Lies!” Rebuked the child. “There is no way this can hurt Big Brother.” They punched the brother again.
“Hahaha. If I wasn’t strong, how could I protect my cute little sister?” He replied. A small hint of bragging was apparent in his voice, of course.
The young girl turned away, pouting. “Hmph!”
The brother patted her with a smile, enjoying teasing her when she had such reactions.
“I’ll continue now.”
“At first, he went on many, many short adventures, taking note of his surroundings, marking paths and making sure to steer away from dangerous territories until the day arrived. His dream was to travel the world! The forest was no longer enough for him, he had already grown bored of it, but he needed to prepare himself.”
“He trod back to his den.”
“Nearby lay a small cave, which he slowly and carefully walked to. Once inside, he headed into the deepest spot of the cave and dug up a seemingly common rock, but his instincts told him it was something special.”
“From there, he walked until the closest riverbed and sat by the shore, amassing mud to form a mud ball the size of his paw.”
“Lastly, he took a piece of wood from the closest tree, and brought the three back.”
“Once he was inside, he placed the three side by side, closing his eyes and taking a deep breath before opening them again.”
“‘These three represent that which I need to survive,’ He stated. ‘Wisdom is like a rock. It must be polished with experiences, and only in the end will you know whether it was worth it.’”
“‘Strength is like mud. You can keep on increasing its volume by adding more mud or consolidating it by letting it harden in a specific shape, only losing it once it becomes too brittle later in life. In the world, one needs a strong enough body to survive and polish wisdom.’”
“‘And lastly, courage. It may only appear at sporadic times, yet once ignited, it will light up brightly and show the path forward. Even if it burns my body, it will be without regrets.’”
“Before going to sleep, he decided to walk outside and gaze at the stars.”
“‘It is only before the boundless sky, shone upon by the stars that I feel at ease. No matter where I travel, I will always have something familiar…’”
“A long time passed since he left. He had now experienced various things in life. Feeling the ups and down as if he were a small boat in the never-ending ocean that is life.”
“Once he reached the world’s peak, he realized a void within his heart as he gazed at the same dark night as if he was missing something important. It wasn’t having polished wisdom until it had become like a gem. It wasn’t having accumulated an ocean of strength. And it wasn’t having ignited courage. It was something he had never experienced but knew he needed.”
The sister asked worriedly, “Was he lonely?”
“Hm…” The older brother looked through the window at the starry night for a moment, then looking back at her. “Yes, he was very lonely…”
She asked once more, still worried, “Did he find someone?”
“We’ll see.” He nodded and continued with the story. “One day, while he was travelling through the same forest he spent his childhood in, he heard a cry. Curious, he approached the source of the sound and found something unusual, an abandoned human baby.”
“He looked around, searching for any traces of the parents, but none seemed to be found. As for any danger to him… Was there even anything that could even beat him in such a place?”
“He picked up the child. ‘What should I do with it? I can’t find the parents, but I also can’t just leave it here…’ He thought after contemplating a bit.”
“Out of nowhere, he took out a wooden bowl.”
“‘Oh Kinship, I request of you to convert this child to that of my blood,’ He put the baby down carefully.”
“‘For me to do it, fill me with your blood.’”
“The fox, using his claws, cut his wrist and held his arm over the bowl, letting the blood drip down drop by drop.”
“When the bowl was full, it glowed with an eerie shine and started to empty. After nothing was left, a light shone upon the child. It was no longer human, but a demi-human, with fluffy fox ears and tail.”
“Lifting the baby, he exclaimed, ‘What should I name you…? Ah, since you are female, I’ll name you Alice!’”
“Ohh! The same name as me!” The sister exclaimed with a smile.
“Mhm.” The brother slightly nodded back.
“Yay! They are now like us two right?” She asked happily.
“Yep, all four of us have fox ears and tails.” He patted her head. “I’m not sure about their hair colour though.”
“Ehh—. Maybe they have the same as us as well! Then we could be like four siblings! Two little sisters and two big brothers!”
“Yes, we could,” He smiled at her remark.
“The fox then said in a low voice with a smile, ‘I will take care of you from now on as my younger sibling!’ and started walking into the distance while carrying the baby, thinking about their new life.”
“Before he left, he walked to a small rock and carved in stone what he came to realize during his life.”
“‘One uses half their life to learn and acquire wisdom, and another to train and obtain strength.’”
“‘Courage is like a rough gem. Only with a fiery heart and tempering our will through difficulties and obstacles one will become like a polished gem, shining like a star in the sky.'”
“‘Lastly, no matter how far one goes, nor how much one becomes, and no matter how much one has gone through, it is only when sharing joys and misfortunes with others that you will experience happiness.'”
“I liked the story! The characters are just like us,” She said with a thoughtful expression.
“I’m glad you liked it, and yes, they are,” The brother said, looking at the window again.
After a while of thinking, which ended in no result, she asked, “Big brother, is this story true?”
He thought for a moment as well and replied, “Not all the story is false, yet not all of it is true. It wouldn’t be fun if I told you the whole story exactly as it truly was, wouldn’t it?” He smiled.
“Boo~” She pouted. “Brother always does this.”
“Haha,” He laughed for a second. “Like I said, teasing my cute sister is so fun. However, it is now time for you to go to sleep,” he continued, making her somewhat dejected.
“Okay… But will you tell me the true story one day?” She asked while lying on her bed.
“One day I will. I forgot to mention, the little fox also liked to start stories with ‘once upon a time’ as well.” He stood up from the bed.
She tucked herself in the bed. “Yay! Goodnight big brother!”
“Goodnight, Alice.” He kissed her forehead. “Sweet dreams.”
Then, he left her room, heading to mine.
On the way to his room, he sighed to himself.
“Once upon a time, huh… It’s been so long, but I’m still having fun and feel happy. It was the right choice after all.” He smiled.
After a short walk, he arrived in his room and headed to the desk, where a diary was wide open. He opened it, picked up a pencil and wrote.
‘I am sure some of you will read this story.’
‘You see, once I had visited a certain blue planet. It wasn’t special in any way, but I did enjoy the stories I read while there.’
‘I also learned many things, but one I enjoyed is that stories aren’t meant to be believed, but shared.’
He put down the pencil and looked at the stars through the window with a longing look.
“Sadly, not even the stars last forever for me to look back this time…”