the smuggler’s bible

Hemlock

Hemlock scuttles through the underbrush, plucking here and there at small clumps of fur stuck on the briars. It won’t be long now, he’s sure of it. Judit lags behind.

“I’m tired, Hemlock. Can’t we stop for the day.”

“No. We’re close. He doesn’t have much of a lead anymore.”

They come around a boulder and the path widens and turns into sandy soil, then water lapping at stones. Judit curls up in the weeds with the sleeve of her nightgown thrown over her eyes.

Hemlock paces the shore. At the river’s edge he finds a single perfectly formed footprint.