Prologue

Her hair was a chestnut, grassy hazel and her eyes were the colour of the forest. She wore skin of dead hyenas and lived in a cave with lions. She walked in the forest from dawn to dust. She had lived there all her life and knew nothing of the human world. She stared at the waterfall and the sunrise and sunset in absolute wonder. Seeing something that I couldn't. Though she had aged into a beautiful young teenager, she never lost that childlike nature. Like it was engraved in her. Though she never knew what we know, she walked in perfect posture, was never sick and knew medicines we'd never know how to use. She wouldn't explain to us. She couldn't. Why? I haven't the faintest clue. I called her Taika. That's Finnish for magic and that was what she was to me. She knew nothing of hate, violence or despair. When she was faced with it, she looked confused and lost. Like an adorable lost puppy looking for its owner. She knew nothing of what humans know, but she seemed to understand when I tried and explained things in my human way. Somehow, though she couldn't communicate with her mouth, she could communicate with her eyes. Just by looking in them, you would know what she was trying to say. Her friends were the animals and the trees. They were the only family she'd ever known. When one was killed the way nature intended, she didn't shed a tear, but made them a beautiful resting place. She was Mother Nature's child. Daughter Nature. She acted like an innocent little child, finding something and then wanting to show it to all her loved ones. She knew nothing of danger or fear. Somehow, she was never scared of the predators that she lived with, that could attack and kill her at any time. The thought never had and probably never would occur to her. Though she wasn't in school or intelligent the way we humans see, she understood things we couldn't ever in our entire life time. She was so sure and so ready to trust anyone who passed her. Very few backstabbed that trust. She knew nothing of lies or betrayal. Even when it was staring her in the eyes. She didn't understand.

I've realised now that if I never met the muted gypsy, I wouldn't have grown up.

But this isn't my story, it's hers. I'm only a lucky guy who wishes to show the world a miracle that lives in an unnamed forest and inspired my whole life.

This is the story of the Muted Gypsy. Aka Taika.