Starting and looking back, I saw a lion in the act of springing on me. I at once got ready to face him. I had a pistol with me. It was fully loaded. I fired. The beast heard the sound. He saw the flash. He lost his wits and took to his heels.
I heaved a sigh of relief. But for the presence of mind that I showed, I would have lost my life. I moved forward cautiously. The forest was very dense at places and very dark. The tall trees looked like huge monsters. There was pin-drop silence all round. Here and there I saw hares and antelopes. They all ran away on seeing me.
I was now in the thickest part of the jungle. I prayed to God for help. The village I was going to was still a couple of miles away. With a fully loaded pistol in my hand and my heart beating loud and fast, I moved on.
Hardly had I gone a few steps when I saw two bright eyes gleaming in the darkness at a distance. I knew it was some leopard or tiger waiting to jump on me but I did not lose heart. I carried a torch with me. I switched it on because I had read that wild beasts are very much afraid of fire or light. I also quickened my pace for fear that I might be followed by the animal. The animal, however, disappeared.
It was at about 1 A.M. that I reached the outskirts of the forest. The jungle was no longer dense now. There were open spaces here and there. I crossed the jungle I could see the hamlets of the village folk. I had, indeed, done a heroic deed.
I went to the house of my friend. He was surprised to see me at such a late hour. He praised me for my pluck. I told him that it was not without risk that I had attempted to cross the forest. I then told him how I had a narrow escape from being eaten up by a lion. My friend admired my good luck but cautioned me against attempting the like of it again.