You sigh, and, quickly striding through the clover, approach the aperture in the hill.
It looks like you won't have to crawl, but you will have to crouch a bit and duck your head
You enter the tunnel, resisting the urge to put your hands on the sides of the tunnel to keep balance. The deepening gloom of the tunnel makes it impossible to tell how much further you have to walk. In the darkness, you slowly move forward, careful not to trip on the rough uneven floor.
After what feels like an eternity, a faint light appears in the distance. As you come closer, you can see that the long, cramped tunnel opens up into a cavernous room, lit by a single shaft of sunlight that comes from a crack in the ceiling above.
In the shaft of sunlight is the tawny rabbit, sitting on something with a look of serenity and patience in its obsidian eyes. As you straight your back and stretch your cramped muscles, it twitches its nose, hops to the side, and solemnly pushes the object it was sitting upon towards you with its nose.
It appears to be a neatly-folded shirt made of some yellow fabric... perhaps it is flax, perhaps
The rabbit watches as you hesitantly pick it up. You get the distinct impression that something is expected of you.
Mesmerized by the unicorn-rabbit's penetrating gaze, you find yourself putting on the shirt. It is a perfect fit, as if it were made specifically for you, and you begin to button it up. As you do up the last button, you feel yourself growing faint...
When you awaken, the rabbit is still there. But somehow... different. In fact, everything about
the room seems different now...
More imposing. Looming over you. Larger.
After a moment of confusion, it dawns on you that the room has not grown larger... you have grown smaller. Your eyes grow wide in panic.
"Do not be afraid," the rabbit says in a soft voice. "I have brought you here for a reason."
"You see, long ago, there was a powerful king who had seven handsome sons, one after the other. These seven sons were fierce hunters, brave warriors, and the pride of the kingdom. But the queen was weak, and sickly, and died while birthing the eighth child, a daughter."
The one-horned rabbit sighs.
"The king, tormented by his loneliness and grief, chose a new wife out of the many ladies of the kingdom. He chose poorly. His new wife was spiteful and jealous, and hated the king's children for reminding him of his deceased wife. She cast a spell upon the sons, transforming them into monstrously large, hairless, spindly-limbed horn-less pink beings. Ashamed of their appearance, the seven sons of the king fled the country, leaving behind their sister. The tearful young princess visited every wizard and wise woman in the land, seeking some way to reverse the terrible curse placed upon her brothers. Finally, she found an old book in a herbalist's hutch which contained a references to 'shirts of gold' that could reverse the transformation spell. The princess immediately vowed to create these magical garments, and return her brothers to their rightful form."
The horned rabbit looks deep into your eyes.
"I was that princess."
You look back at her, bewildered. "Then... am I one of your brothers?"
The rabbit looks slightly embarassed.
"I'm afraid not. My brothers all had black eyes and a crown-shaped blotch on their left ear, whereas you have lovely blue eyes and a crown-shaped blotch on your right paw. Still, you're awfully cute. Would you like to hibernate with me?"
You look around the room once more. Upon closer examination, there are a variety of cozy nooks, filled with soft, sweet-smelling grass and the silky shredded remnants of some unsuccessfully woven gold shirts. All in all, there are worse ways to spend the winter...