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Sap dribbled from the gash, as tawny in color as the eyes of the lioness who made the wound. She still slept in the tree’s shade, and he couldn’t help but wonder at the unfamiliar beast, so much bigger than the domestic cats that often frequented this part of the forest.

The old tree couldn’t know her as the old lioness who escaped when the zoo truck which carried her broke down not far from there. He couldn’t know how much danger she might be in. Nor could he knew she would never be able to survive on her own. He just kept her cool until the zoo folk arrived and took her home again. He often wonders what became of her.

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