Old English cliwen, cleowen (denoting a rounded mass, also a ball of thread), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch kluwen . Also: a ball of thread (used especially with reference to the thread supposedly used by Theseus to mark his way out of the Cretan labyrinth).
Aly was lost. It was dark, she was hungry and thirsty, it was cold, and she was alone. Completely alone. There weren’t even any of the normal night noises from the crickets and tree frogs that usually filled the air. It was as quiet as death. Quiet, and just as lonely.
Aly had been trained in all sorts of ways, to defend herself, protect, camouflage, disappear. She could take down just about anyone who tried to attack her but she wasn’t bullet-proof. And she was just a little bit afraid of the dark. One never knew, after all, what kinds of monsters lurked on the other side of the dark. The human ones were the worst.
Right now, though, she needed to figure out where she was. It would have been easier in the city, where there were always lights. Out here, the word dark had a whole new meaning. When she’d finally broken out of the trunk of the car and rolled out onto the road, it was gravel. Gravel? There were still gravel roads that people actually used?
Wow. She knew where she was. Nowhere, that’s where.
Well. There was only one thing she could think of to do. She oriented herself by the stars, faced east, where the sun would shed its first light. She took off her hand-knitted watch cap, thankful for the long hair that would help keep her head warm. Picking at the seam of her cap, she finally loosened a thread. Using the cap as a clew, she tied the loose thread to a scraggly bush and tugged until the cap began to unravel. Standing, stretching, checking the stars again, she started to walk.
If she needed to, she could return to her bush and start over again in a different direction. She had a sweater, socks, and an undershirt that she could add to her clew.
She fervently hoped that she would still be alive and at least partially clothed by the time she figured out where she was.