A vow to bear (p.351) The sun was rising over the mountain top and scattered long rays of warmth along the rocky surface. A brisk fog was in the air and dew hung off the wild grass. Inman was awoken by footsteps coming from a thick bush about 20 feet back, Inman dew his Lemat's and put it one full cock. He sat waiting in his thoughts of what to do as the sound came closer to his position. Soon a black figure came though the bushes and stopped about 10 feet in front on Inman. It was a black baby cub and it did not like what he smelled, the cub stretched out his neck toward Inman and gave him a good sniff, then rolled out a loud holler and ran back into the bushes. Inman could hear the bear crying out to others and knew very well what he was up to, Inman quickly tried to gather his things but soon as he lifted his sack, a massive black bear crashed though the bushes and stared into Inman's eyes.
Its paws where the size of both his hands put together, and claws the size of his fingers, he was so close to Inman he smelled of wet and musk.
Although he killed many in his youth, he had taken a vow to himself never to kill this beast again. One morning he and his father where hunting in the deep woods of cold mountain, they had run out of the cow they slaughtered and would not last the winter, so they set out to hunt for the migrating geese deep in the cold mountain woods. They found a clearing and sat down in a dugout near a old willow tree, finally after the sun was about the set a large flock glided over Inman and his father, they both quickly fired, Inman's shot barley missed, but his fathers was a sure shot and down came the mangled bird in a heap of feathers, Inman's father quickly ran to retrieve the bird and told Inman to stay in case some more flew over. Inman quietly waited, then without warning a giant grizzly charged and slammed into Inman, he fell hard onto the frozen ground and ached like he had dropped off a house top, he slowly pulled himself up and forgot that the bear was still there, he stood face to face with the powerful beast and stared right into the bears little black eyes. Inman looked over and saw that his rifle was knocked about 10 feet away from him, their was no way to get any where near It without the bear taking off his head. Inman was sure that he was a dead man; he closed his eyes and waited for the bear to strike that final blow and kill him where he stood. But it did not come, Inman creaked open his eyes and found the bear still staring at him, as if he was studying Inman's face. The bear then slowly pulled himself away from Inman and started to walk back into the woods, then turned its head again towards Inman's face and disappeared into the woods. He left that night wondering why the bear had not killed him, and why he took pity on his soul, then Inman felt a great deal of friendship and importance toward the creature.
Inman found himself again in the same position from the past, but this time he was on the attacking end, he still had his Lemat cocked and ready, one shot this close with the shotgun blast would carve into the bears head like a melon. He had not eaten for about 4 days now, and he could taste the bear meat in his mouth as he tightened his grip on the Lemat. but he could not do it, even if it meant he would not go without food for another two months, he could not bring himself to murder the creature, Inman launched his sack over his back and walked toward the woods, he looked back into the bears eyes, then set back on his on his walking.