The bear picked me up and all I remember was her warm fur smelling robustly of mushrooms and honey. I was hardly awake and yet I will never forget her tenderness. She cradled me in her arms like one of her cubs and took me deep into the heart of the mountains. I know no more; only that which has been told to me later. For miles she must have borne me on two legs; though the pain must have been very great to her in walking so. There high above the battle I had fought and lost, she laid me to rest on the ground. For three weeks she watched over me. I do not know how she fed me and perhaps it is best not to dwell on such subjects, but I learnt she was so very patient. I feverish and close to death must have been barely logical; oh, how she must have endured such nonsense from my lips and yet in fleeting lucid moment I saw her encounter with the wolves. She fought them off, though she was hurt by it. She did not think to consider the cost, the reason or the end. She taught me in that short time that life is not a choice but a gift. Question all you may the intricacies of living and the methods of dying but remember this; you will all die and it will not matter that you lived; only what you left behind in the deeds and hearts of those around you.