Trixie is attacked on her way to the small store about a mile from her home. A young girl is the only witness to the crime, but she is deaf and has lived in the woods her whole life. She and her brother, a cougar cub, sit next to Trixie until help arrives. What did the girl see? Why has she lived with cougars her whole life? Will Trixie be okay? And will it take more than the BobWhites to figure this mystery out?
Trixie was walking to the small store near her home to get the evening newspaper her parents liked to read after dinner. Honey was supposed to come with her but had to stay behind and take care of the horses. Trixie and the BobWhites had started a new mystery, one that had involved a child being spotted in the woods with a bunch of cougars. They hadn't been able to find the girl or get anywhere near her but had managed to see cougars roaming the woods around Ten Acres but everytime they get near, they scatter, leaving little to no trace of where they went to.
As she walked to the store, she heard something behind her and turned to look. It was a young girl. In her arms was a cougar cub and she looked as if she was trying to hide from someone. *The girl ran for the woods at the sound of a car coming up the road, not wanting to be seen by anyone. Trixie followed the girl to try and see where she was headed. But as she moved towards the woods, she heard the screech of tires and turned to see what was going on. One look told her she was in trouble.
Trixie took off running for the store but didn't get close enough before someone grabbed her. She screamed as loud as she could and noticed movement in the bushes. Her scream was cut short as she was hit in the chest and all air knocked out of her. They kept hitting her and then started kicking her. She hit the ground and curled into the fetal position, protecting her head as best she could. When it felt like forever, the kicking and hitting stopped, but then came the worst part. Trixie felt a sudden sharp pain to her side and it sounded like a gun was going off, but there was no blast that could be heard.
She rolled over onto her back and gasped for air. The men looked down at her, kicked her a few more times for good measure then got in their car and took off. Trixie lay on the ground gasping for breath, trying to stay awake. The girl came up with the cub and sat down next to her, looking on as if someone was going to come along and help her. She pulled something from a pouch at her waste and put it on Trixie's wounds, pressing the moss into the bullet holes to stop the bleeding.
The cougar cub that had been in the girls arms sat next to her as she pressed the moss into the wounds, not knowing if anyone would get there in time or not. Her mothers, sisters and the rest of her brothers were somewhere in the woods, probably looking for them at the moment. She knew that she couldn't leave the girls' side without her dieing. The girl had seen death before, at the hands of hunters, never at the hand of another human like her.
When it felt like three ticks* of the sun had gone by, a car started pulling up the road from where the country met city. The girl looked up towards the car not knowing if it was the bad people coming back or someone to help. Her brother stayed close to her side, making sure not to move for fear he would be killed. The girl felt her brother cower next to her and put one of her hands on his head, trying to say that it was going to be okay.
The car stopped suddenly and people got out. She couldn't hear what they were saying but could tell that they knew the girl that was hurt. Kids ran to the hurt girl and the young girl was pushed aside. The girl picked up her brother and moved to the side of the road, crouching and hiding in the bushes. Nobody seemed to notice that she had slipped away. Another car came and took the hurt girl away. The people that had showed up turned to see if the girl they pushed away was still there.
A girl with curly hair stepped towards the woods only to have an adult cougar jump out and roar at her. She screamed and stepped back, letting the cougar take the child and cub away from where the people were. The child took a look back and noticed that the kids seemed to want to know why their friend was being taken away hurt. The girl had the answers. She had seen the men that had done this. She had felt the vibration of their voices as she listened to the ground, keeping her eyes on the men. She had seen it all, she just didn't know how to communicate this to any of the people out there. She had never talked to another human before. She only knew how to talk to her parents and siblings.
*Sound means vibrations for the girl. She can feel the vibrations of a car coming up the road and that's what sound is to her.
*Ticks: hours in this story