Endurance Contest

 Only near the base of the forested drumlin have I stood and waited, while others tramped by on some forced march. I halted for hours among the muddy leaves, beneath the canopy of stark twigs and empty clothes. 

 Further up into the mist and undergrowth the chosen vanished only to emerge again, more tired than before. Some moved at only a walk when I knew they should be running. Others with fever in their faces and eyes and limbs as they tried to be the first to reach the edge of the wood. To their rear the trees shook, but there was no wind.

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