Chapter 2: The Tiresome Journey: Where’s my mom?
Winsley lounged in his exhibit, nestled in a tree. He was watching several other monkeys play and swing from the branches. He never joined in, as he was often met with the other monkey breaking up the fun whenever he had tried. They would split up and go separate directions to avoid him. If Winsley watched them, he could imagine himself playing with the others.
Winsley would get the strongest urge to to play and swing with them. He would play with an imaginary friend by swinging and climbing up his own tree as he chattered at the air in front of him.
This friend was invisible to the others, but he always wound up being the most interesting monkey he could think of. When everyone was given their single banana, his friend would somehow have 5 of them and share them with him.
He would tell his mother of all the adventures he and his friend had encountered. Some of them included evading big and scary cats, or just sharing secrets between them, while wondering about life.
His mother, a beautiful monkey in her own right, had a golden hue to her brown fur. It shined through her deeper brown tones, every time the sun had shined on her fur. She loved her little boy and knew he was special. All of her attention always seemed to be just for him. This made him happy he did not have to share his mother with no other monkey, so he was never alone.
The keepers of the zoo would call her Marigold because of the yellow and gold highlights in her fur. Her eyes were a gentle amber. Often she went to the learning lab to work with the keepers and scientist while learning the language of humans. Often they gave her extra treats which seemed to happen more often. Her tummy had gotten rather big. But she always saved a couple for Winsley.
At night, they would put a sound proof plastic panel up on the exhibit which helped prevent noises from each exhibit transferring to others. This allowed each group of animals to get a restful night's sleep. They allowed certain species to socialize and interact with the children and roam about the park. A handful monkey’s acquired this right after endless hours of training, each of them were embedded with a chip that tracked their locations within the park.
The sun would rise, and the barriers would come down. They would play a sound of a bell across the speaker. This told all the animals that they were permitted to travel about the park. When the sun set, another sound would go off and all the animals returned to their pens to eat and sleep for the night.
However, tonight unlike other nights, there were 2 humans standing outside the exhibit visible through the plastic barrier. Each of them holding what appeared to be a net, making weird gestures, and seemed to communicate with each other by moving their arms and lips. They began moving towards the exhibit door.
Glancing into it exhibit via the panels, they made sure that it was clear to enter. As it was quiet and most of the monkeys were asleep after their long day of interacting and playing with the kids that came to visit.
They entered with both nets in hand, looking around at the monkey’s. Several slept in corners, a couple were in the trees and some were sleeping in little nests made of hay on the ground. The two men scouted and looked around the exhibit, until their eyes fell upon Marigold, who was sound asleep in her hay nest in a corner of the exhibit.
One of them crept forward with a net in hand, tip-toeing then rotated the net and threw it over her head and body before twisting it up trapping Marigold. She quickly let out screams of terror as she was startled awake. She tried to twist her body to escape the net.
The other monkeys in the exhibit heard this and started an uproar of noise, swinging from trees and panicking, throwing sticks and rocks, afraid and terrified after hearing Marigold’s startled screams.
Winsley woke up from his nap hearing his mother and the screams from the other moneys and ran towards her. He let out sounds and cries of worry rushing in her direction before finding himself caught in a net as well, just a few feet from her. The man who had caught him spoke up and yelled to the other. “Get her out of here, I got this one, we can’t let them escape.”
“But what about… Wins-" The other man holding Marigold was cut off by rocks being thrown at him, he nodded. Then he proceeded to carry the captured monkey Marigold in his net towards the door. She panicked, but was restricted to her movements as her legs fell through the gaps of the net. Her arms reaching out towards her baby Winsley. While sad, angry and afraid, cries escaped her lips.
The other that managed to trap Winsley within his net, deflecting rocks and waited until the female monkey was no longer in the room before releasing the panicking and scared Winsley.
Winsley immediately tried to follow, but was unable. His mother was led away through the door and separated by the plastic barrier that separated them from the hallway. Winsley began to bang on the plastic barrier. Following in the same direction as her, until she was out of sight behind the wall.
The second man took his chance and ran out of the door, and locked it behind him, leaving the exhibit in an uproar of sounds and cries from both Winsley and the other monkeys. He had been warned that this might happen. But needed to sure the female monkey was safely separated from the rest, as it was a priority.
Winsley no matter how hard he tried was unable to follow his beloved mother. He kept trying pounding on the plastic barrier and crying out for her, even though he had lost sight of her. It took a few hours for the other monkeys to return to their peaceful nature. Winsley sat slumped in front of the plastic barrier, for even longer. To him it seemed like it was days. As he waited to see if his mother would return.
He finally returned to where his mother’s nesting place was, giving up. He looked for his mother. Unable to find her the only thing he could do was lay in her nest, trembling and scared. Wondering if he would ever see her again. This was the first time he had been separated from his mother, in a way he would not be able to return. He was truly alone.
Winsley spent several hours crying in her nest, that he didn’t even notice the sun come up. The sounds that usually broadcasted hadn’t gone off, like they normally do before his barrier came down which allowed him to roam the park. He didn’t even notice his friend the boy with the red hat entering the exhibit. As he lay still sobbing in the corner.