Last night my friend told me his story at the bar, he was horrified, but he had to tell me. He was trekking through a forest in a Northern European country. He had a compass, a map and his backpack was filled with a tent and sleeping bag. The load weighed heavier on his back, his eyes was heavy lidded. He got more and more tired, he had to find a good place to set up the tent. He trekked through still more forest until he found a flat patch of ground that would have been near water.
He set up the tent and his bed. He had food and started to dress for bed.
Anyway, the bed was uncomfortable. The air got colder. He fitfully slept.
Each time he woke up and went back to sleep, unbeknownst to him, a tool by tool that he needed for getting out of the forest vanished.
Something that wasn't branches lashed against the thin layer of his tent. That finally woke him up.
The tent door opened, seemingly by itself. His breath got shallower, as the zip unzipped, there was no shadow on the door.
His body did not move for fear. A whoosh of air and he was carried as if he was Gulliver but he could see nothing but the ground and he was in his bedclothes as he floated out of the tent.
He floated until he was into a cave, into its darkness.
It was utterly dark, he heard only water on the ground.
Then the cave lightened and he gasped.
Innumerable tiny grey creatures swaying back and forth, whispering as one...
His mind was polluted with the most gruesome images. He described it as him seeing the worst of the world. Fishes devouring their young; a Nazi skinning a person; jaws suddenly detached in accidents. There were infinitely worse images I shall not attempt to describe.
The creatures then whispered to him, "Do not come to the forest. The forest is dead. Humans, you did this to us, you cut down the creatures of the forest." Then he saw his foot being set on and his bare feet's smallest toe got taken off.
He did not feel pain, he merely saw blood pouring out of his stump. The creatures said to him, "This is how we feel when you cut down a single tree."
Then pain came down like a bunch of bricks.
He screamed and screamed.
They carried him back to his tent and they put his cellphone in his hand.
He frantically dialled the cellphone as he staunched his wound.
Then he spoke to the medical service of the country.
After he made the call, he fainted.
He woke up in the hospital.
Well, the thing is, he showed me the stump.
I believed him.
I found out the horrible truth.
His ex-girlfriend cut off his toe because he abused her for years and she had enough.