I was just grabbing something from my bedroom when it caught my eye. A rapid flash of colour and motion that my peripheral vision couldn’t quite make out. I turned and looked out of the window, to see a fox, dashing about much like a kitten having its “mad half hour” (cat owners will understand).
The fox, quite young, and definitely fast, had got something in its teeth. It had caught its prey, and was apparently struggling to tackle the poor writhing creature into submission. The fox ran this way and that, as though its victim had made a break for freedom, then back into the middle of the lawn where it mercilessly flicked its head as though trying to break the neck of whatever it had caught.
I tried to make it out. It was dark grey, with red from its injuries, could it be a rat? Perhaps a pigeon? It was hard to get a good look before the fox was another blur of motion and autumn-coloured fur.
Round and round the fox whirled, never letting go, grasping its victim in clenched teeth.
Then the fox gave a surprised little hop, as though spooked by some invisible force, and bounced onto the small section of newly laid turf. Finally it dropped the now lifeless beast from it jaws, and stepped away momentarily, just long enough for me to make out what it was it had conquered.
And there it lay, a forlorn grey gardening glove with a red trim, alone on the grass – at peace at last.