There was also a boy that added color to the world, but was completely unaware of how he did it.
Surreptitiously, he left his house one night under the cover of the mango trees (which are not indigenous to this area, but he was, at the moment, grateful they were planted there by some ignorant person. They grow sickly fruits that are hardly anything like the mangoes found in the supermarket, and they certainly are not very tasty). He was looking for a fox, a red one with an exceptionally bushy tail that he had seen earlier that day. As he walked along the moonlit path towards the forest, with a twig in his hand swinging to and fro, the boy was still amused with the first encounter with this furry creature. He had come across the fox in the afternoon after hearing rustling coming not far away from where he had been playing. She was curled up in a bush, meticulously and tenderly cleaning her tail. It looked like she had been a part of a paintball war - bright splotches of every color formed a haphazardly done polka dot pattern on her fur, and yet she appeared unhurt. The boy was perplexed and fascinated, and he went closer to look. As soon as the fox saw him she bolted, for a second revealing the other side of her body. It was completely clean.
The boy walked on towards the forest. It was his playplace - it wasn’t a large forest, and so he knew it very well, having explored and adventured through the trees, not just horizontally, but vertically too. He thought in three dimensions because he was very adept at climbing trees, and so he knew where many important places were for animals to hide. In fact, the boy also hid his treasures in the forest, alongside the animal burrows and nests where he knew they would be safest. The animals didn’t mind at all, either. They helped him camouflage his special trinkets by packing all their important things right over his. He made friends with the squirrels and various birds, but he had only seen foxes occasionally and wanted to get to know them better. Now, he thought he would have a chance because in essence, the first interaction between him and the fox was a sort of introduction, a formality of greeting required before friendship. And so this is why he snuck out of his house in the middle of the night, to find the fox and remind her of who he was before she forgot.
The boy looked all over the forest, up and down, in the bush, around the bush, and could not find her. He wasn’t sure what types of sounds foxes made, either, and so he couldn’t call to her, but he looked for a couple of hours. When he planned his escapade, he was certain that he would find the fox sleeping in the bush, and then he could wake it up lightly and make friends by offering it some chocolate. It was really, really good chocolate that his mother had bought at the supermarket the other day, and without a doubt the fox would be his friend after that. But he couldn’t find her! He started to cry, because it was late, he was already tired, and he didn’t know where else to look.
In fact, the boy never really knew where the foxes went. At first it seemed to him that they didn’t spend much time in his forest, but they always seemed to be around. And when he saw this colorful fox so comfortably lying in the bush, he thought that this one was a weird fox that could be his friend, unlike all the rest.
While he was crying near the bush, he heard the soft pit-pat-pit-pat of footsteps from a short distance. He quickly jerked to silent attention, using his ears and eyes and even nose (these actions all held a funny similarity to the squirrels he spent time with), because when you can hear footsteps, that means it’s not a small, forest creature. A dim, diffused light appeared between trunks of trees a good amount of feet away, wobbling slightly as the human-like silhouette walked very deliberately in his general direction. It looked to the boy that the person was not quite headed directly for him, which meant that the person probably did not know he was there. But who knew? He still had enough time, so he quietly scrambled up a tree near the bush and hid between the leaves, waiting and watching.
The person did come straight to the bush. The person did use the dim flashlight to look around inside for something, but didn’t seem to find anything, and left just as deliberately as he/she had approached. The boy was scared, and so he decided to stay in the tree for a little while longer. He didn’t have a chance to recognize the person at all, because the person was wearing a winter coat with the hood pulled over his/her head. This scared him all the more, and he tried to think about what someone would be doing in his forest. He stayed in his hiding place a long time and thought, forgetting completely about the polka dot fox.
The next morning, he awoke in his bed, hearing his parents’ voices downstairs and the sizzling of bacon and eggs. He ran downstairs quickly, looked out the window, and sat down at the table. As he ate breakfast he looked covertly and quizzically at his parents, who were supposed to be completely unaware, if he had been sneaky enough. They seemed to be normal. But he had no idea how he had gotten home, and began to doubt that any of it had happened in the first place.
After breakfast, the boy went outside and looked around. Everything looked a little different than it had the previous day, but he couldn’t tell quite what that difference was. All he knew was that he didn’t really want to go into his forest anymore.