chapter 22

Another Bad Dream

I was in a field full of flowers, like you see in those allergy commercials on TV. Where you see people running through fields of flowers because they no longer have allergies. I was in my wolf form and was jumping around stomping on the flowers like crazy. I couldn’t remember ever being so happy. I never wanted to turn human again. I just wanted to spend all my time as a wolf from now on.

But then I saw "Her". No, I thought, no she won’t recognize me as a wolf, but she looked straight at me. I started running fast after that, but I wasn’t running as fast as I could. I could not get my legs to move any faster. I turned around and there she was! She had turned into the monster she was and she was going to get me. The flowers were now suddenly taller or I was smaller in this because they were all over my head, which hid me well. When I saw a monster peering down at me and it clearly saw me she reached down to try and grab me. I jumped up to bite her arm; I wasn’t going without a fight.

That’s when I woke up. I was still in wolf form and there were feathers everywhere, as I had a pillow in my mouth. I was clenching it so hard my jaw hurt. This suddenly remained me of the story about the guy who dreamed he was eating his pillow then woke up to find out it was true, Lefty and Red were both staring at me. I couldn’t ignore the feathers, it looked like it was snowing in here and they were making me sneeze.

"You were having that nightmare again," Red said.

"What? How did you know?" I asked spiting the pillow out of my mouth.

"I don’t know what it was about, but I know you were having the same nightmare you were having when we found you in the woods." Red explained

"How could you tell?" I asked spiting out a few feathers.

"You were groaning and moving your legs in your sleep the same way when we found you," Red said walking over to the bed.

"Oh," I said embarrassed.

"Does the dream have something to do with a tragic experience you had? That’s what Gram- Gram said it might be," asked Red.

"Well sort of. When I was three my …I paused… a very mean woman tried to kill me."

"What!" said Red shocked? Lefty looked shocked too because he got up, or it might of just been Red shouting that startled him.

"Uh yeah," I continued realizing I was going to have to give more details.

" I was just sitting around minding my own business when she came out and started chasing me. I’m pretty sure she wanted to kill me."

"Why was she chasing you?" Red asked leaning forward. As he leaned forward so did Lefty. I wondered if he was just copying Red or he really wanted to hear too.

"I don’t know. I was only three and I didn’t ask, I just ran into the woods and lost her. Some hunters found me later and took me to the orphanage."

"How did you outrun a grown woman if you were only three?" asked Red.

"I don’t know..." I said. I often wondered the same thing. I had tried to tell some adults such as the hunters when they found me, but no one believe me. They all said I was too young to remember what really happened. So I hadn’t told anyone that story in years. It wasn’t a happy subject and my heart always ached when I did.

"But I did outrun her and got away, that’s what’s important. I still have dreams about it. Sometimes... the lady turns into a monster."

"She sure sounds like one," said Red. "Anyone who would want to kill a three year old is a monster. But why would she want to kill you?" Red asked.

It was an obvious question to ask but it still stung to hear it.

"I don’t know, maybe she was looking for a two-year-old and she couldn’t find one so I was close enough", I said jokingly. There was a long pause before Red spoke up and said, "If it makes you feel better I am an orphan too," said Red starting to smile.

Unlike LB’s wolf smile Red’s just looked innocent and none threatening. It was a real smile.

"You may not have noticed, but I don’t really look like anyone in this family," said Red.

"Uh I might have noticed Red," I said.

"When I was very little I was left at a puppy farm, and was weaned by one of the beagles there. There was only one beagle and the rest of the dogs were all Jack Russell terriers."

That didn’t surprise me. Those are really hyper dogs that Red probably loved playing with.

Red continued saying," I was in my wolf form then, but I found out really early that I could switch back and forth from wolf to human. One day I went into my human form and Harold, the old man who ran the puppy farm, found me. He brought me up as his own son, kind of like Pinocchio and Jupeto. Well except I wasn’t a talking puppet. I met Raven and the rest of the gang when we were all teens. They were all living in a cave back then. When I told Harold about it he insisted they all come and live with us. Just like we insisted on you living with us."

That made be blush.

"Any way Harold died years ago. He was 91," said Red sadly.

"Died of what?" I asked.

Red gave me a strange look and said, "He went skydiving and had an accident." He said this sarcastically.

"Well it’s good that he was active until the very end", that was all I could think of to say to that. We both cracked up laughing.

"You would have liked him if he was still around. Well that’s the story how we all became one happy family", said Red. Hey! Did you know one third of our lives are spent sleeping?"

"Uh no," I said and immediately regretted it when I realized where he was going with this.

" Did you also know in one person’s average lifetime we spend about six years of if it dreaming? That’s about 2,100 days of your lives spent sleeping, but we only dream on average one and two hours every night. And if you’re snoring you’re not dreaming."

Red went on and on like this until I got very tired and went back to sleep.

 

Bob Cat Girl

"Uh you’re not going to eat that?" I asked LB as he did indeed eat something that was hard to tell if it had ever been an animal.

"I told you we’d start you with road kill first, then we will work our way up to squirrels and easier to catch prey. Not that this isn’t easy to catch."

"But it just looks so nasty," I groaned looking at the lump of dead flesh on the side of the road.

"That’s your human side talking; your wolf side would love this bad boy. Wolves can digest things that would make a human sick."

"Oh I think this would make anybody sick, I said.

LB continued, "Like bones, raw meat, fur, and rotten carcass that might have been sitting in the hot sun on the side of the road for days. Which reminds me, I saw a dead possum across the street that we should eat before it explodes."

"Explodes?" I asked confused and horrified at the same time.

"Haven’t you ever seen CSI kid? Bodies can explode if they’re left in the hot sun too long. It has something to do with the gasses and juices inside the body. That’s why I prefer to eat fresh kill. But I don’t mind hot meals either, it’s kind of like eating soup."

I started to feel sick.

"I don’t think I’m ready for road kill today LB", I groaned barely able to keep my breakfast down when I spoke.

"Fine kid, suit yourself," said LB. "But just remember we should take advantage of whatever food we can find to gorge ourselves when we can. We have the ability to go long periods between eating. In the wild it could be two weeks before we get another fresh kill."

I’ve felt that way at Thanksgiving sometimes I thought. I usually didn’t eat anything two days after Thanksgiving was over.

"But why do I need to learn hunting in the first place since we are part human and we can just buy our food."

"Or get it from that $#@!*& butcher!" added LB chewing on what looked like a tail. He swallowed it, burped then looked serious.

"Do you know why wolves exist in the first place?" asked LB.

"Uh no", was my reply.

"To pick off the sicker parts of the herd so the rest can survive. If a sick deer or caribou wasn’t eaten it would spread its diseases to others members of the group."

"But how come the wolves don’t get sick from eating the sick caribou or deer?" I asked.

"Uh. You’ll have to ask Raven that one", said Lb in a tone that implied he really didn’t care what the answer was if he didn’t already know it.

"That doesn’t seem fair for the deer. It’s not their fault they get sick," I said in a sad voice.

"I know kid, nature can be cruel. But on the plus side when the sick deer are eaten it doesn’t spread to the rest of the herd and they thrive better. If wolves didn’t eat the sick deer, they might all get sick then they would become extinct. I’m not trying to gross you out kid. I just want you to get a feel for things before we start hunting for real. Wolves rarely ever kill something for the fun of it despite what people say. We hunt to survive not to make farmers miserable. When it’s time to hunt your instinct will kick in."

"O.K. But… can I just try eating road kill that looks more like the animal it was before it wandered into the street?" I asked.

LB laughed. Then suddenly he stopped and stood still and stuck his nose in the air as if he smelled something. He looked serious.

"Someone is here", he whispered.

I could tell by his voice it wasn’t a friend or a person he liked. Before I could ask who it was, I followed his eyes staring behind me. I saw a very big cat sitting on top of a rock. It was a mountain lion. The lion stared down at us smiling like the Cheshire cat from Alice in Wonderland. There was something shiny in its ear, an earring.

"What going on boys? Oh you have a new member," said the cat in a female voice.

As it climbed down from the rocks it slowly turned into a girl. She had short hair; it was almost like a Mullet, which was weird to see on a girl. She was very tall when she stood up. I noticed her skin was olive shaded. Her eyes were green with a look that said I’m up to no good.

"Hey there handsome", she said looking right at me. I felt my face blush. I was glad all this fur on my face covered it up so she couldn’t see that.

"This is Bobcat Girl", said LB with no expression in his voice. He sounded bored like he had introduced her a thousand times before. She insists on us calling her Bobcat Girl even though she’s not a Bobcat. She’s a were- mountain lion.

"And I’d told you a million times Bobcat Girl just sounds better than Mountain Lion Girl." She said this while smiling.

"Anyway, continued LB, she lives on this rock between the other big rocks. She’s harmless, but she scares campers for fun just to get their food."

"I’m like Yogi Bear", she giggled, I noticed her tail had not disappeared when she turned human and was waving behind her.

"Well it’s immature, and dangerous to scare people", said LB in a huffy voice.

"A hunter might come along after hearing about you. And if he gets you he might think as long as I got a mountain lion, I might as well go and get some wolves."

"You’re just mad because I’d scared you so many times, " she cooed.

"You have not scared me," growled LB.

"Oh please, the last time I snuck up on you, you wet the ground."

" That was just drool!," said LB.

"Come on Trooper let’s go home," said LB in a gruff voice turning around.

"You all come back now you hear," she said waving the same way the Beverly Hill Billies did.

"I’m not trying to be rude Trooper", whispered LB as we walked away.

"I just don’t care for her, she’s harmless but she gets on my nerves," said LB.

I felt quite the opposite as I turned around for one last look at her and noticed she winked at me. She was a kind of cute in a weird way. I wanted to go back and talk to her, but I figured I should do that without LB.

 

 

More Bad Dreams

I was in the field again, but there weren’t any flowers this time, just plain grass. So there was nothing to hide me. I was just sitting there, as it got darker and darker. I started turning around in circles looking for her but I couldn’t see anything. Not that I wanted to find her, I just wanted to know were she was going to come from. I finally just started running for it. That’s when I knew she was right behind me, right on my tail and I mean literally on my tail about to catch me. I didn’t want to turn around and see her but I had to know how close she was. Then all of a sudden it went dark as I was hit in the head with blinding pain. That’s when I realized I wasn’t dreaming; I really had been running in the woods and had hit a tree when I turned around. I must have been "sleep running." After the pain in my head stopped throbbing I looked around. I had run deep into the woods, where it not for the moon it would have been completely dark. Could I just turn around and run back I wondered? I did tend to run in a straight line. But what if I couldn’t find my way back? And what if those redneck hunters found me? Could they be out this late? I felt hot. I wondered why I wasn’t sweating, then I remembered wolves don’t sweat they pant like dogs. Before I could decide to run or hide I heard a voice that made me jump.

"Hello there buddy."

I turned around and it was Bob Cat Girl. A wave a relief washed over me.

 

More Bob cat girl

"So how long have you been a wolf", she asked casually as we walked back to the cabin together.

"Well all my life I guess," I said.

"I mean I just found out a few months ago. It’s taking some adjustment. How about you? When did you find out you were a "were cat?" I asked.

"Well lets see" said Bob cat girl thinking. " I always new I was different. I used to scare the neighbors dogs to death."

"What did your parents think?" I asked.

"I wouldn’t know as they both dumped me off on an aunt when I was a baby."

"What was your aunt like?" I asked trying to Chang the subject away from absent parents.

"Bossy, when she was awake. But she slept a lot, not because she was really old or drunk just lazy. She had no interest in entertaining me so I had to entertain myself. I broke into a few houses, not to steal anything, just because I could. I figured I wouldn’t get caught because if anyone came down stairs they would see a mountain lion and think they just had a wildlife problem."

She laughed. She had a great laugh not an annoying squeaky one or a big booming one. A laugh that made you wants to laugh too.

"Anyway, after I got out of high school I decided this was my time to travel the world. I wanted to see if I could walk to Las Vegas, but traveling the open road wasn’t as fun as they make it look on TV. I got tired of walking and decided if I wanted to go to Vegas I was going to have to save up for a bus ticket. Then I found this great cave and it was just perfect. I didn’t want to leave it because I couldn’t imagine ever finding another cave as great as this and the rest is history. I get lonely some times, but hikers come by to see me and sometimes I hide and then jump out just for fun to see them wet their pants. I’m still planning to go to Vegas some day, as soon as I save enough money."

"But that’s just the way life is. Everything happens for a reason you know," I said.

"I haven’t really thought about it, I mean after all if I hadn’t run off I wouldn’t have met the other werewolves. I felt I had to say something. I hadn’t said anything since we started walking. I wanted to say something cool but all I could come up with was "Yeah I guess so."

Oh God why I’d say that, she is going to think I wasn’t listening and I didn’t like her. Why can’t people give you some warning before you are going to talk to them so you can plain out what you’re going to say better? This is what was running through my mind when she suddenly turned around and kissed me. Well I think she did, it was more of a lick. But it was the same way Raven licked Sliver Ear, gentile and right in the face. Not like when Lb lockted me which was just sloopy and gross.

"Good night Trooper I have to get my cat nap in," she said. That’s when I realized we were back at the cabin. I’d been so engrossed with her talking I hadn’t noticed. As she walked off I heard her say "same time tomorrow."

"I guess I should be going too," I managed to squeak out to no one as she couldn’t hear me now.

My first kiss. I thought people had to wait until they were at least 20 years old or as old to have their first kiss. So this is what they mean by the saying "floating on air". I walked inside much happier than when I had woken up.

 

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