The snow danced lightly down from the sky. One flake at a time, it twirled and drifted, appearing somewhere high above as a tiny speck, then growing, falling. Some landed on the tall, dark pines, caught in the great drifts already on their branches. Some fell on the ground, slowly building the soft mounds of white even higher than they already were. Some fell on her cheeks, on her nose, on her forehead. Now and then one of the tiny flakes tried to kiss her eyes. Then she would blink them away. It was the only movement she made as she watched their mesmerizing dance.
She felt no cold. The soft drifts around her cradled her heavy body. Her bed of white feathers beckoned her to sleep. The snowflakes above danced a lullaby against the twilight winter sky. The woods smelled of cold, of ice, a sweet and peaceful breath.
She heard a voice somewhere in the distance, a sorrowful cry, barely rising above the gentle whisper of the falling snow. She took another slow breath, then rested again. That voice sounded familiar, but she could not understand why.
She wanted to sleep, to drift back into that lovely dream. It had been summer, and she had been able to fly! But then she had decided to wake up and found herself here. For a long time she had wandered, lost, in the cold, until she had gotten so weary she had to rest a while. Now she could not even remember what she had been searching for.
“Sarah!” the call came again. So lost, it sounded, so hopeless. Sarah. That was her name. She remembered now. The voice was calling for her. She would stand up, and go and find them.
After another moment. Now she was tired. She closed her eyes. The snow caressed her face.
Another sound, an excited yelping, a dog’s bark. Sarah opened her eyes again, startled, as she heard the footfalls in the snow. Then there was a dark nose, a warm tongue burning against her cheek, and the sound of barking in her ears.
“Sarah!” Now the voice was right beside her. Someone picked her up and held her close.