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Today's offering comes from a real urban legend and Native American lore. It's a 2-part saga.
The Witchy Wolf and the Wendigo
Setting the Stage:
Veterinarian Olivia Rosalini takes her despondent patient home to see if being in a home environment would perk him up. He does perk, at least for a little while.
Olivia seared the salmon in the pan, medium for the wolf-dog cross and well done for her. If he ate the fish and rice, she’d make him more tomorrow. He had yet to move his bowels. When he did, everything coming out okay would mean no lasting internal injuries. Glancing over her shoulder, she frowned to see him curled in a tight ball. That wasn’t good. Setting her dinner aside, she took his plate and sat beside him on the floor. Lightly petting his head she asked, “What’s the matter, big fella? I can’t tell if you’re getting worse or just homesick.”
Ash didn’t move, though her soft touch comforted him.
Pushing his plate under his nose, she used her fingers to break off a small piece of fish and stuffed it under his lip.
He spit it out on the floor and turned his face away. Leave me be.
Olivia tried again, this time pushing the fish past his sharp teeth and onto his tongue.
He spit it out.
She slid it deeper into his mouth.
Ash sighed. He just didn’t have it in him to fight. True, he owed her for her tender care, though ideally she should have left him to die. But as long as he was waiting until Livie slept to leave, he might as well go along with whatever she wanted. That decision made, he chewed and swallowed.
“Good boy!” Pleased that he sat up looking ready to eat, Olivia went to get her own plate. Taking a seat beside him she ate her dinner while he polished off his meal.
The fish was good and reminded Ash of meals eaten in Aiyana’s summer village on the shores of Mishigami long ago. The thought made the last mouthful stick in his throat but he forced it down. He needed to end this sadness, he needed to go.
Finding it odd he didn’t lick the plate clean, Olivia reasoned that his appetite wasn’t at full steam yet. She rose with both plates and set them in the sink to wash later. Unbuttoning her shirt, she returned to crouch beside him to pet him. Holding his face, she looked him in the eye. “I’m going to take a shower. But listen, I don’t want you following me. I’ll only be upstairs but that’s just too much for you right now. Stay. Understand? Stay.” She kissed his snout.
Ash couldn’t help but notice her half-bare breasts, noticed too the warm sent of her skin and the intoxicating memory it stirred. Livie smelled like a woman under the light scent of meadow flowers, and her kiss was sweet and soft. Watching her go, he was surprised by the sudden compulsion to follow. With his awkward three-legged gait, by the time he made it to the stairs, most of her clothing was off. He was surprised by a fleeting rush of desire. To his further surprise, it came with an urge to change into a man.
He stood there gazing up the stairway. His heart ached to feel another’s embrace just once before he ended this life. An unbidden yearning for Livie came, a thought so foreign to his mind it was nearly unrecognizable. Ash shifted uncomfortably, as his body remembered nonetheless. Turning away, he headed to the door. She was busy, he could leave now. His keen ears heard the small sounds she made — running water, her soft footsteps, singing. The singing did it.
Without further thought, he took a deep breath. In a flash his form shifted. Reducing in size until his limbs disappeared into his body, Ash assumed the form of a snake. He slithered out of his cast and bandages. With nostalgia plucking at his heart strings, he glided up the stairs, following the lovely sound of a female voice accompanied by running water. It was a sound he fondly remembered from his life. He found Livie standing under a spray, a white curtain showing only her silhouette. He coiled there a moment, remembering how the women of his village sang beside the babbling stream as they bathed. Her voice made him happy. Three thousand years had passed with that emotion as much a stranger to him as the desire prompted by seeing Livie unclothed had been.
Needing more emotional succor, his strong stomach muscles clenched and propelled his serpent’s body upward until he was above the rod. Looking down, he found Livie foamy and slippery-looking. Her eyes were closed against the inexplicably hot and steaming water that sprayed her face. Ash tested the moist air with his forked tongue. While his sense of smell in this form was not as keen as in his wolf form, he could tell the lather was the source of the meadow flower scent on her skin. He felt a man’s desire again and was just about to slither onto the showerhead when the water unexpectedly stopped. An instant later, the curtain pulled back and knocked him to the floor behind the toilet.
Recoiling under the sink in an attempt to remain unseen, Ash watched her step from the bath tub. Sparkling beads of water trickled down her bare skin, rolling down her shapely legs to her small feet tipped in toenails colored like the inside of a river shell. Livie possessed rounded curves and beautiful breasts to fill a man’s hands. She had wide hips for bearing strong sons and daughters. A painful memory brought him back to reality. Frowning sadly, he took his dark thoughts and quietly slid along the wall and out the door.
Ash worked his way down the stairs to where the cast and bandages lay. Again and again he tried to arrange his body to allow himself back into the bindings. But each time he took a larger form, the cast would turn uncomfortably. Hearing Livie’s movements upstairs, Ash knew he had little time. His attempts to replace the bandages and cast were futile. He did the only thing he could think of: taking the form of a black bear, he crushed the cast into bits with his strong jaws. Resuming the form of the wolf, he picked up the bandage in his mouth and waited for her at the bottom of the stairs.
And that was how Olivia found him.
“No!” Hurrying down the steps, frantic upon seeing he’d chewed off a cast that was only three days old, Olivia knelt before him and scolded, “What did you do?” His compound fracture was a dangerous thing.
Ash rolled to his back as he’d often seen pack wolves do for the alpha wolf. Olivia seemed to know animals well, he was certain this gesture would appeal to her.
“What the hell?” She examined the front leg. When she’d hit him with her car, he’d sustained a compound fracture. The sharp jagged break had protruded through the skin, the leg muscle and tendon torn. Now, there wasn’t so much as a scar to show where they’d operated. The fur had already grown back where they’d shaved him down to his skin. “This isn’t possible in three days!”
The Witchy Wolf and the Wendigo books 1&2
in ebook or paperback On Amazon
in ebook or paperback On Amazon
"I found myself reading slower the closer I to to the end - just so I could enjoy the story a little longer."
Read how the story began at USA Today
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Amazon's Look Inside feature.
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