Night Owl

The owl stood on a branch, looking into the darkness. Pine needles surrounded him, hiding him from prey and other nighttime hunters. He stared, hunting for a meal.

The grass, a field of navy blue, was lit by the half moon shining above. It helped the owl, but was unnecessary; he would have been able to see anything move with no moon.

All was still.

He turned his head to the right. More stillness. To the left. More stillness. Continuing to turn his head, the owl looked behind him, into the woods. He watched.

There, on the ground. A mouse, perhaps. It had frozen, perhaps sensing the owl’s eyes. The owl remained motionless, waiting to see if it would move. After some minutes, wondering of its own paranoia, the mouse took a step forward.

Spreading his wings, the owl took off, swooping down as the mouse darted for cover. It was fast, but not fast enough. The owl clasped the mouse tightly in its talons, snapping its neck in a mercifully quick death. He landed, took the body in his beak and swallowed it whole, then sat to digest before flying back to his nest.

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