Garza was the first to wake the following morning, this gave her time to hold her pendents close to her chest breathe in todays life while clearing out the doubts of yesterday. Garza felt a strong inclination to pray over the pack as the sun began to rise;
You have brought us here on purpose and you will continue to lead us on a road that brings us to you. Impossible is broken down and reformed into possible for you are our strength. I pray that our faith only grows through experiencing your undeniable presence, I am so blessed to be surrounded by your magnificence on a daily bases. I can feel you now and as I continue to travel with the leadership of your voice the more your love encompasses me in each step. I lay down my life for your ways without them I am a slave to death and only with you can I produce life within myself as well as others.
Love your humble servant;
'Amen,' a groggy voice chimed in from Valyears awakening blanket. 'Although I am worri...'
Garza cut off his words instantly looking into the depths of his soul claiming, 'today is a new day and bringing forth past tribulations only heavies our present load. We have a long ways to travel lets not weight ourselves down in vain.' With her words lingering in the air to be chewed on, inviting the silence to speak she began to pack up camp.
Valyear took the front position towards the legendary Hinde, before taking a shuffle forward Garza placed her hand softly on his shoulder smiled upon him with grace sharing 'we are not alone, when you feel overtaken by trouble ground your toes to the soft earth below, there is where we take the burdensomeness off of our terrestrial beings and on to our celestial Father.' Valyears traps released its stored tension as he took a breathe in from his nose.
Upon his exhale he responded in soft accepted relief. 'Okay.'
Three hours of venturing passed bringing the ternary to the water base of Arnica Lake, yellow flowers reflecting the magic of the sun surrounded the body of water. Reaching the opening of the reservoir a sign shared some practical advice;
Yellow I am,
healing I hold,
transform me to jam,
and the new will replace old.
'Well isn't that something...' ginger guide giggled, 'in all my travels here I've never seen such a message as this.'
'Were you looking for answers outside yourself?' Garza gently added looking rather pleased with her own choice of words.
Valyear scrunched his brow and turned to meet her gaze, just as their vision linked infectious laughter filled their bellies. Taking in the tranquility of trees, glimpses of mountains tops and the calling of Adam's ale they danced without restraint in worship for such a sacred space. Kiera rushed the lagoon in celebration, Garza floated through the grounds touching the wisdom barring bark of the pines ingesting its serenity while Valyear gathered bunches of yellow healing in order to accept the gift being prescribed. Gratitude rose with each hour spent in Arnicas headquarters, shifting each travels vessel to refine their souls for the quest ahead.
As the night met them at Arnica the dead of the dark invited their thoughts to prance freely, tomorrows anticipation brought forth walls of worry. Phillips Ridge was the next phase of the path, which required them to scale two mountains Limestone Cap & Tibetan; Golden Hinde was the third requirement on the third days.
'We should store food here for our return, it will also lighten the load ahead,' Valyears wisdom guided. Garza nodded in accord.
Muted by tornados of impressed memories the guide paced in circles around the crackling fire while Garza attempted to unlock the puzzle held in her dreams vision. Kiera embraced the opportunity to rest grateful for a life outside known fences, why leap into freedom only allowing the mind to capture you instead? The dwelling tricks of the future exhausted them into slumber. Bodies laid still while hallucinations and fantasies manifested, the contradicting spirits of fear and hope battled amidst the bonfires smoke all being transcended towards the heavens, dissipating as it reached eternity.
'We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed and broken.
Song celebrating the new day enticed all six eyelids to adjust upon the morning sky, tingles of the unknown possessed the sleepers to awaken. Newness counteracted the stain of experience, redemption was calling. With the knowing filling their empty stomachs the summoning of the mountains view drew them to advance. Meditating on what steps to take led them to follow cairns laid out by previous adventurers, devoting themselves to this signal of detail held them on their designated path. Just outside the borders of Arnica they neared a sign stating Phillips Ridge, Kiera feet pranced around the tattered wooden landmark displaying her elegance for Valyear and Garza to take in. The two looked at each other puzzled then proceeded to let amusement overtake them from the infectious joy Kiera emulated.
'Phillip must be a friend of Kiera by the looks of things... eh,' Valyear commented eyes fixated on Kiera's delight. Garza shrugged with uncertainty and a wide smile.
Continuing onwards up and down the peaks to valleys of the climb brought stories, childlike bewilderment, ceaseless prayer and constant bafflement of brindle beauties scrambling capabilities. If they knew any better they would have sworn to witnessing a horse actually fly. For hours they experienced the presence of the Sky Father, as height developed the air being breathed in began to resemble a sweetness. Occasionally they paused to marinate upon the panorama in gratitude for such endless beauty attempting to comprehend the depth of its Creator.
We are perplexed, but we don't give up and quit. We are hunted down, but God never abandons us.
Trees, shifted to rocks and rocks into steep slides of snow. Valyear lit up at the sight celebrating the texture and frosty consistency of the Lords creative water gifts. Kiera joined the ceremony munching on the mountains fluffy white treasure, Valyear began to pack the contents into a palm sized orb launching them in direction to Kiera without hesitation she leaped seizing the treat of frozen rain into her chomps. With each landing her excitement encouraged the action to repeat, Garza pushed out a smirk but internally her discontent for the slipper planes manifested into reality and caused her to fall. Of course the festivity duo collapsed into hysterical guffaw at Garzas missteps, body encompassed in ice the fire of rage waved from her internal nerves outwardly against the skin peels of her cheeks.
'I HATE THIS! What a terrible direction to lead us. Why wouldn't we continue to ascend the rock face? We don't have time for such dull-wittedness.' Garza sprawled on her back spat uncontrollably.
Goldens guide held in his laughter and slyly responded with a mischievous cat grin,'Pride comes before a fall Jillian.' Pausing for comedic effect and added while pointing towards the heavenly ceiling. 'Not my words but... I think you know him.'
Garza sat up while glaring at Valyear with lasers pulsating from her retinas, she rose up in a huff brushing off her egos embarrassment.
'Well let's not dilly dally, nightfall will be here before we know it.' Garza stated in the peak of sunlight.
Kiera and Valyear absorbed the shock of Garzas displeasure transforming it into fascination for her undeniable humanness.
We get knocked down, but we get up again and keep going.' -2 Corinthians 4:8-9
The current valley shifted into another mountain reaching the peak enthralled all of them to marvel instantaneously at the earliest glimpse of the Hinde. The power of its appearance shifted Garza to bow in a posture of humility, repenting for her self absorbed behaviour. Cries of sorrow were quickly replaced with tears of joy, rising from her knees she peered at Valyear with remorse and said,
'Thank you for taking us here. I'm sorry for reacting out of my temporary fleshly discomfort rather than my spirit of gratitude. I retract my arrows of rage I casted towards you, I pray you forgive my trespasses.'
Gingers heart tendered in response, 'Of course... and for the record that tumble was hilarious, so thank you.' while performing an exaggerated curtsy he conducted yet another wave of rioting laughter.
His ability to shift heavy emotional content into whimsical ebullience was a direct correlation of Gods grace and Garza grew fond of it, even at the demise of her well formulated ego. The sting initially hurt yet her knowing rejoiced at the death occurring in the thick of her interior being. Death to life!
Embarking on the downward slope of Phillips trail into the return of the tree line encouraged the trio that the crystal blue refreshments of Carter Lake was soon approaching the drying doors of their lips. Something about gravity naturally swaying them towards restoration portrayed the trueness of Sky Fathers mercy. Falling at the sight of blue waters the pendant of ammonite on Garzas necklace began to glow, in response she took a deep breath filling her stomach with the honey savouring air, cupped her hands to hold the contribution of aqua and with praise spoke;
'You are a good good Father.'
And with that she bowed her head, lifted her hands to her face and took in the pool of replenishing glory.
'Amen.' Valyear bellowed wiping his chin of Carters remnants while the mountains echoed his euphoria. Smiles of contentment reached across all three of them.
Heat of the day melted into stale powder blue airspace, the reflection of sky to water felt heavy as the trio shattered over the boulders that framed the lake. The completion of the first lake stung with the nudging memory that another was surely approached, quivering limbs began branching a doubt filled question to their fragile heads 'are we there yet!?' Dragging out the remaining drips of faith left in their soles they arrived at the end of Schjelderup mere diminished of consciousness. One by one corpses crumbled to open beds of land, the tribe lay motionless just before twilight made its emergence. Valyear took superintendence of the flock by administering tasks for each comrade to perform. Just as he turned his back for a moment emptying his rucksack of supplies Kiera jerked forward in downright irritability and nipped his unprotected behind.
Ginger guide airborne from the horse bite exclaimed, 'OUCH! Jeepers, Mother and Jacob,' rubbing his fanny in a combative attempt to reduce the ferocious sting of Kieras teeth imprint.
Garza perched up having observed the discord, 'KIERA! WHY DID YOU DO THAT?' she shouted in the stallions area. Only to receive a disgruntled sigh of discontent coming from the exhausted motionless heap of Kiera.
Checking on the effects of her mustangs actions she concernedly asked 'are you alright?'
Valyear was still massaging the effected tush, accompanied by a light cackle 'yes, I'm fine. Maybe Phillip and Kiera aren't friends after all.'
Connecting with the present laughter Garza sheepishly giggled under the covering of her hand, rotating her gaze back upon a very warn out animal she proceeded to take advantage on each remaining moment left of the drifting day light. Garza tip toed to the gates of Schjelderup Lake stripped off her single garment piece and cleansed herself of the long days sweat, inviting the fresh water to purify every crevice of her mortality.