On the first morning of the hunt we were primed, hearing stories of the tricksters, their shape often resembling the rabbit or the fox. Storytellers collected fragments and poems to pass on to us.
“Remember, they are called tricksters for a reason,” Dr. Henry, our guide, told us, and we puzzled over his large beige hat and khaki shorts. They were so derivative.
Dr. Henry told us stories of the tricksters, of how they formed canyons and caused problems, how global warming was the work of a particularly awful rabbit that would not let humanity exist in peace.
Humanity, he said, should have been shaped a certain way, but the constant meddling of a rabbit caused the baking process to turn out incorrectly. So now we have arthritis and ingrown toenails.
“They will appear to be cute and fluffy on the surface, but beware,” the doctor told us, and then recounted the story of the fox who allowed the sun to go flying into the sky out of the tribe’s well-kept box while they danced in darkness.
We reached the crest of a hill and found a perfect open space to stop and rest a while. Hunting mythological trickster figures turned out to be a busy process, involving near-dehydration. Fortunately, we had canteens.
“That trickster will creep up on you, and you will think, ‘Oh, Easter’, then zap,” the doctor told us, swigging down some liquid.
“Oh look,” one of the newest crew cooed, “there’s a cute little bunny over there.”
Dr. Henry’s head swung in a wide arch and our gaze followed his. At the edge of our quaint clearing, a small bit of fur was hopping about.
“It’s one of them!”
Before we could raise our rifles or dive for cover, the ground beneath us began to rumble and we heard the doctor say, “Now we are in for it.”
JD DeHart is a writer and teacher. His work has appeared in the Biblical Legends Garden of Eden Anthology, Bewildering Stories, and Illumen, among other publications. His latest blog project is jasondehartjustliving.blogspot.com.