Queen of the Jungle

Chapter 1 – The Huntress

For decades, the topic of Lion vs. Tiger has been highly debated, with people taking one side or being neutral. People have considered them to be natural rivals. A jungle in an unspecified location, in the animation world, was about to test that theory…

“Mother. Why have you brought me here to this jungle?” asked Kiara, as her and Nala entered the jungle. “I’ve told you several times, Kiara.” Nala replied, “I’ve brought you here to improve your hunting skills. A jungle is the perfect place to train you.” Kiara still looked puzzled. “Why? We live in a savannah, and rarely venture into jungles.” Nala took a deep breath, and answered, “You see, Kiara. A jungle is full of obstacles. You will run into many obstacles as you hunt in the savannah.” Kiara interrupted, “Oh, I get it. This training is more like some kind of obstacle course.” “Yes.” Nala assured her. “Cool. If only Kovu and daddy was here.” said Kiara. “They are quite busy at the moment, and I think we could use a little mother and daughter time since the crisis with the outsiders is over.” Nala stated in return.

Nala then noticed a log, which was covered in moss, sitting along the forest floor in front of them. “Now. Let me teach you the first lesson of being a great huntress. You see this log?” “I do.” replied Kiara. Nala headed walked up to the log. “This log here is the perfect cover for a hunter stalking her prey.” she stated, “You just crouch down like this.” Nala bent down low, so that none of her body could be seen by anyone on the other side of the log. “Now it’s all about the timing on this one. You have to feel the ground quake underneath you. That’s your signal to attack, but only when you can feel your prey is within striking distance.” Nala continued, “Let me show you how it’s done.”

Nala roared and leaped from behind the log. “Aahh…!” Nala quickly stopped before running into the new “prey.” “Timon. What are you doing here?” “Sorry. Just, please don’t eat me.” he answered, still trembling. “You know I won’t, Timon.” Kiara then jumped the log, after hearing the noises. “Timon. How many times do you have to tell you to stop following me!?” she asked, angrily. Timon swung his head back and forth, constantly switching between looking at the one of the two lionesses. He let out a deep sigh. “All right, all right. You got me. I just wanted to see what you two were up to. Grubs?” Timon showed them a leaf full of assorted colorful creatures. Nala and Kiara both had a disgusted look on their face. “I think we’ll pass.” Nala said calmly. However, Kiara was still fuming. “Timon! Why do you have to constantly-” “It’s ok, Kiara.” Nala interrupted, “Timon’s presence here is actually more of a good thing.” “How so?” Kiara asked. Nala turned her attention back to Timon. “Would you mind just standing right where you are, and jumping up and down here for us?” she asked the meerkat. “What for…?” Timon asked nervously. “You’ll see. Just trust me. You’ll be fine, Timon. Remember… No worries.” “You’re right. Don’t worry you two, and I’ll be right here and won’t move, except up and down.”

Timon began jumping, as Nala and Kiara got back on the other side of the log. After walking over, Kiara crouched down into a lunging position, as Nala positioned herself directly next to her. “You ready, Kiara?” “I was born ready, mother.” “All right. Just wait until a few second here.” Nala paused briefly. “Now!” Kiara quickly leaped from behind the log. Timon screamed as horror, but had no time to move as Kiara immediately pounced on him. “Got ya!” she stated proudly. Timon, still quaking in fear, yelled at Kiara, “Let me go! Let me go!” “All right. I will, as long as you promise to stop interfering with our training.” replied Kiara. She released her grip on the meerkat, and Timon then proceeded to run away. However, before he got too far away, Nala stopped him in his tracks by putting her left-front paw on his tail. “Where do you think you’re going?” she asked him. “Um… away…” Timon answered timidly. “You’re not going anywhere. We can still use your assistance for our hunting exercises.” “Hunting exercises!?” Nala nodded and smirked. “Yes, Timon… We’ve got plenty more to do.” “Oh no.” Timon said fearfully. Timon’s cries were so loud that they could be heard for miles, as the sound traveled over the jungle’s canopy.

The jungle itself was very vast, with plenty of brush to be found for miles on end. A small lake was towards the center. Not many creatures lived in this particular jungle. Thus, food was relatively scarce and hard to come by. The air was very tropical and humid. However, for some strange reason, it had a short amount of annual rainfall over the last few years. One could speculate that was the primary reason for the lack of food in the area. On the flip side, many creatures do come by these parts for various hunting and other training exercises. Still, many would get lost, and turn against each other for their own survival. Therefore, this jungle has constantly proved the theory of “Survival of the Fittest,” and Nala, Kiara, and Timon were about to be caught up in it. They just didn’t know it, yet…