Fiver Beyond
Sun 15th Jan 2012 at 23:08:34
Box canvas 36x48” (90x120cm)

When Bigwig, Speedwell and Hawkbit come back to the warren, Fiver runs to meet them. A fourth wounded rabbit with them vanishes in the half light: it’s bad news. Hazel has been shot…
Fiver goes underground and dreams of the limping rabbit. In his dreams he starts to follow Hazel down the dew- wet ridge and into the mist of the fields below…

Part 2 On Watership Down
From chapter 25: The Raid

By kind permission of Richard Adams

The journey back, with the three limping hutch rabbits, lasted more than two weary hours. All were dejected and wretched. When at last they reached the foot of the down Bigwig told Blackberry, Speedwell and Hawkbit to leave them and go on to the warren. They approached the wood just at first light and a rabbit ran to meet them through the wet grass. It was Fiver. Blackberry stopped and waited beside him while the other two went on in silence.
”Fiver,” he said, ”there’s bad news. Hazel-”
”I know,” replied Fiver. ”I know now.”
”How do you know?” asked Blackberry, startled.
”As you came through the grass just now,” said Fiver, very low, ”there was a fourth rabbit behind you, limping and covered with blood. I ran to see who it was, and then there were only three of you, side by side.”
He paused and looked across the down, as though still seeking the bleeding
rabbit who had vanished in the half-light…
...When Blackberry had told his news, Fiver returned to the warren and went underground to his empty burrow...

From Chapter 26: Fiver Beyond

In the burrow, Fiver slept and woke uneasily through the heat of the day, fidgeting and scratching as the last traces of moisture dried out of the earth above him. Once, when a trickle of powdery soil fell from the roof, he leaped out of sleep and was in the mouth of the run before he came to himself and returned to where he had been lying. Each time he woke, he remembered the loss of Hazel and suffered once more the knowledge that had pierced him as the shadowy, limping rabbit disappeared in the first light of morning on the down. Where was that rabbit now? Where had it gone? He began to follow it among the tangled paths of his own thoughts, over the cold, dew-wet ridge and down into the dawn mist of the fields below...

- Aldo Galli -