"Ok, ok my darlings" Gaia sighed. "Your babies are all so beautiful. Yes, yes, my blessings on them all. Come and see me at the Oak this evening Master Rabbit and I will look at your ear then. Go now and be merry in the sun, summer is nearly over and the harsh winter will soon begin."
With that she turned to move through the creatures around her, leaving the voles and foxes and mice and all manner of other tiny creatures in her wake. She needed time to recharge.
As she cleared the gathering the tree tunnel came under a peaceful quiet once more, quiet enough for Hart to step out from his hiding place. Only he could bring a smile to Gaia's face during this season.
"Hello old friend." She greeted him, sliding her hand down the fur on his neck. As she stepped past him the beautiful stag rose up onto his hind legs and shifted into the form of a human man. His antlers becoming thick locks of brown hair. But his eyes they were the same, over these many years all the many times Gaia had changed him for her own selfish reasons she had always kept his eyes. Those deep and fathomless brown eyes.
"Hello Gaia" her name rolled deep from his throat and settled her fraying nerves.
"Oh Hart, these summers are getting harder and harder to bear."
"The constant activity, the constant chatter, oh just the constant....I find myself wanting to set forth winter earlier and earlier every year."
"There is an option Gaia" Hart replied with his usual knowing sideways look, with just a sprinkling of wicked.