6 Chapter 6 – King of the Fores

    Yogi once again tracked the human scent to the west with Kip almost helplessly bouncing along on top.  Hmm, maybe I should make a harness?  It would be similar to saddles of old. He, of course, added 'of old' as horses nowadays were even bigger than Yogi. They were also even less likely to let people ride them then the surprisingly docile and rather large black bear.  Well, he was some type of animal whisperer...Maybe he would get the chance someday?

    He could swear Yogi was laughing at his ridiculous thoughts, but he couldn't confirm it. He did get a definitively Negative response when he had pictured Yogi with a saddle on him.

    Suddenly Yogi came to a halt ducking off the road sending an image of Kip cloaking, then a vision of Kip sitting on Yogi and them both disappearing, along with a Question?

    "So you want to know if I can cloak us both? I can for a short time, the larger the area, the more energy it takes. Why?" He asked curiously.

    As if in answer the Earth started to shake as loud footsteps approached from the forest to the left and slightly behind them.  The sound of branches and trees being splintered reverberated through the night followed by a roar so loud, that it made Yogi's seem quite pathetic.

    Yogi sent him another image of Kip and Yogi disappearing along with a sense of Urgency and a little Fear.

    This fear brought Kip out of his stupor and he extended is "Absolute Cloaking" field to encompass Yogi as well. He could only maintain such a large area for ten minutes or so, but he figured if there was any time to use it, it was now.

    The footsteps slowly approached following the trail that they had just departed. Yogi meanwhile had retreated further into the woods, remaining just close enough to see the path from their hiding spot.  Kip meanwhile was having trouble avoiding being bounced off Yogi's back with each step. The massive beast coming was so large that the ground itself jumped up and down with each step it took. A massive clawed foot about as large as Yogi became visible through the trees almost precisely where they had been when he had cloaked Yogi.  Coincidence? Kip thought not.

    The Monster started sniffing the air over the trail, and Kip swore that even the air where they currently hid hundreds of meters from the path was being drawn towards the beast's massive snout. After what seemed like hours of sniffing, but was likely less than a minute, the creature finally let out a much quieter roar as if in frustration and departed in the direction it had arrived from.

    Kip thought to Yogi, "What the hell was that?" Wanting to avoid actual speech despite knowing that his cloaking ability would stop any sound from escaping.

    Yogi replied with an image that people of the 21st century would likely recognize as a cross between a Tyrannosaurus Rex and Godzilla!  It had a massive head and toothy maw like a T-Rex, but also possessed large muscular arms that looked much more functional than its long-extinct counter-part.  While it seemed like it primarily stood on its rear legs with a huge tail sweeping out behind, it also appeared that it could crouch down on all fours if it needed too. If the scale was correct in Yogi's imagery, it stood nearly as tall as the shorter trees in the forest when reared up on its hind legs. This height was noteworthy as plants had evolved along with their animal counterparts growing proportionally larger in both width and height.  Even common forest trees of the 'old world' now stood as tall and majestically as the California Red Woods of a thousand years ago.  He briefly wondered how massive 'evolved' Redwoods were now?

    This also meant that massive monster must be nearly 100 meters tall! That thing could likely crush most compound's walls with ease!

    At Kips thought, Yogi sent another image of the massive monster running along level ground along with an Affirmative. Then an image of it trying to walk up a mountain, stumbling then falling clumsily along with a Negative.

    "Hmm so if I got that right, it operates really well on flat ground, yet it can't ascend or descend very well?" Kip asked. He had to admit he did almost chuckle to the image of the massive monster crashing to the ground despite their predicament


    Well, that was some consolation at least Kip thought. "We should get going. It can't hear or smell us while we move any better than if we stand still. It is probably better to get as far away from here as possible before I run out of energy. I will also need to save a bit of energy for whatever we find later." Kip added.

    Yogi sent an Acknowledgment and made his way back to the path wearily.  He did make sure to come out a few thousand meters up the trail from where the "King of the Forest" that Kip now called it had nearly caught them.

    Kip maintained cloaking on them both for another ten minutes which was long enough for them to travel nearly twenty kilometers away with Yogi's impressive pace. The constant use of his ability in this capacity left Kip with hardly any energy in reserve but thought it was well worth it to ensure they avoided detection from that monstrosity again. Until he got some much-needed rest, he would likely only be able to cloak himself. It would have been smarter to stop and rest, yet because he was so close to finding answers about his sister and parents, he stubbornly pushed on.

    Yogi meanwhile had come to a stop and stood staring off into the woods to the right of the trail. He took a few big sniffs, then sent an image to Kip of him holding the scarf up to Yogi's nose. Then nodded his head in the same direction. He then transmitted an image of the twenty people that he had smelled before indicating the same direction.

    "So they are all that way?" He asked in a near whisper. "How far?"

    He got an Acknowledgement to the first question and a frustrated Huff to the second. As if he couldn't think of how to make the stupid human understand the distance.

    "Close?" he guessed.

    Once again Yogi sent an Acknowledgement. Then an image of Kip alone, followed by a hilarious portrait of an over-sized bear trying to squeeze into a tiny hole in the ground and getting his head stuck.

    "Personal experience huh?" Kip joked.

    Yogi only chuffed plopping down on the ground to the side of the trail answering the question of what he would be doing while Kip went to explore.

    "Thanks, Yogi, you are the best bear ever," Kip said seriously before heading off into the woods.

    Yogi once again sent the impression of Duh to Kip that nearly had him laughing again despite the severity of the situation.

    Kip then activate cloaking on himself and slipped off down the path towards where he hopefully would find his family, still alive and well.
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