Those Endowed with the Essence of Beast
Fantasy equal: Werewolf
Both you and your dog huff and puff heavily as you jog down your usual trail on the outskirts of town. It is a popular trail and every time someone with a dog comes by, you have to keep Feral, your small Jack Russell, from making his acquaintance with the passing doggy and his or her owner. Here comes another lady jogger. You greet her, but make no effort to look fit and energetic as she passes by. Next is a handsome looking guy and his tough looking German shepherd. Time to man up and better your form. You try your best not to look like you’re dying as you approach each other, but as luck would have it you trip over a loose rock, which sends you diving into the dirt right in front of him. You did not do this on purpose. The ‘Damsel in Distress’ trick is for prissy girls!
The jogger man is a gentleman. Even though you are flustered and anxious to run away and look for a hole to creep into, you notice the weird yet attractive features of the man who is helping you up with his clammy hand. He has piercing dark eyes, a well-formed stubble, tufts of hair at the sides of his jaw line and a mane of hair that looks like it should belong to an animal instead. If you get passed the somewhat crude exterior, you’d notice the kindness in his twinkling eyes and boyish smile. He is quite hairy, of a slender build, yet he has enormous, bulging calf and quad muscles.
“Are you alright? That fall looked quite epic from my angle,” the stranger asks.
“I’m okay, thanks,” you mumble as you dust off a bloody knee.
“Here, take my handkerchief for that knee. I’m Wolfe, by the way,” he says.
“Thanks, Wolfe. My name is [Insert your name here]”, you reply as you take another quick glance of this peculiar specimen. “Who carries handkerchiefs nowadays still? Not that I’m complaining, it’s just so... old fashioned.”
“I suppose I’m an old fashioned guy, to some degree. Oh... you may want to take hold of your dog. I’m not sure Bruce (referring to his German Shepherd) will take a humping on his leg lightly... Well... he doesn’t seem to mind it after all,” Wolfe says grinning.
“Oh, is the embarrassment ever going to end!” you exclaim as you draw Feral away from Wolfe’s dog. “Sorry about that. Feral here humps almost anything on four legs. To him size does not matter at all. He is brave or maybe crazy or stupid, since he does not get intimidated easily, hence me struggling to train him. He has a will of his own”, you say smiling.
Wolfe returns the gesture and responds, “You are dealing with a Jack Russell, a cute one at that, so you are excused. Look, you seem like my kind of guy, err... I mean a nice guy... would you like to be my partner? Jogging partner!? I’m new to town and this is my poor attempt at making a friend.”
You can’t believe your luck. In exchange for some embarrassment and a bloody knee, you may just have lined up a series of dates with someone you find quite attractive.
“I’d love to!” you respond. “I mean, sure!”
The two of you exchange phone numbers. All the way back home you try your hardest not to forget his phone number. It doesn’t happen often that you jog home at this pace. You scribble the number down the second you step into your apartment. Next you switch on your washing machine to wash Wolfe’s handkerchief. You unleash Feral, remove your running shoes and make your way to the lounge to relax a bit.
Wolfe takes the bait first and phones you later that evening. The conversation starts off a bit awkward and shaky, but soon the two of you cackle like two chicks after watching Gossip Girl. You spend about an hour delving into each other’s characters. You like what you hear and hope he thinks the same. He seems to as he invites you for dinner in two day’s time, after a run of course.
Finally the exciting day of the big date has come. You are all kitted up in the better of your two jogging outfits and make your way along with Feral to his house, which isn’t that far away. You hardly park your car before he and his dog emerges from behind the gate. He must have waited for you, even though you’re right on time. Talk about being eager. It’s a good sign though! He greets you by shaking your hand and the two of you jog off into the sunset before Feral starts humping Bruce again.
The jogging goes okay. Wolfe realises that talking whilst jogging doesn’t work for you, which he doesn’t mind at all. The two doggies seem to enjoy each other’s company as well. The warm summer’s evening starts to cool down as you make your way back to his place. By this time you’re huffing and puffing like mad. You are grateful to Wolfe for slowing the pace somewhat so you can keep up with him.
On arrival you remove your tog bag from your car after which Wolfe escorts you to the backyard of his cottage. The dogs are set loose. Bruce walks next to Wolfe, surveying his every move where Feral prances off on a sniffing expedition. Wolfe’s backyard garden is spectacular. The lawn is covered in dense, soft grass. Wolfe already removed his shoes and socks. You do the same to experience the soft, frail touch of nature under your feet. The garden is surrounded by high trellises, covered in overgrown ivy, which makes his garden totally secluded. All along the trellises are beddings of all sorts of ground covers, ferns, shrubs and white only flowering plants. In the one corner is what seems to be a fish pond with a waterfall. In the other corner stands a majestic oak tree. From its lowest branches hangs strings of faerie lights, which illuminates a quaint patio set. The patio set doesn’t looks like the sort you’d find a store; they seem to be made from solid wood. You are led around the corner to an outdoor shower.
“I installed this about a week ago. I thought it would be pleasant to shower outside during the warmer seasons. You can shower here if you like, whilst I step inside, freshen up and prepare us a quick meal, if you’d like to stay, of course”, says Wolfe.
“That would be nice, thanks. And I’d love to take a shower here. You have a stunning garden by the way. One can see loads of time and effort went into it. Did you do all this yourself?” you ask.
“Yes I have”, Wolfe replies. “I’m quite proud of it and can’t wait until the plants grow properly. They are still acclimatizing. Okay, let me go freshen up and get dinner ready. We’ll have dinner under the great oak, for when you’re done.”
Off Wolfe prances with Bruce by his side. You remove your smelly clothes, turn on the tap and go through your bathing routine. You don’t wait long under the great tree before Wolfe returns wearing a fresh pair of shorts and a t-shirt, carrying a tray of goodies along with him. You can’t take your eyes off his stunning pair of legs and large feet. You smile as he hands you a wrap and a glass of juice.
“I hope you like smoked chicken wraps. If there’s anything in it you don’t eat, let me know and I’ll execute plan B”, says Wolfe.
“No need for that, it looks yummy, thanks!” you reply.
The two of you enjoy your dinner and each other’s company. During this time the sun makes way for the moon. The moonlight slowly crawls over ever darkening shadows and into the garden. Whilst probing at each other’s personalities, something unexpected and horrific happens... right in front of your very eyes Wolfe’s appearance starts to shift. His eyes turn wild, his mouth starts to form what seems to be a muzzle, his skin and hair metamorphose to fur and his nails turn darker, larger and sharper. His clothes cannot contain his shape-shifting body and rips to pieces.
Shocked and terrified, you fall off your chair and scurry away from Wolfe. In front of you now stands a dark and terrifying hunched figure. Wolfe has turned into a werewolf! He looks at you. His kind eyes have now become fierce. He takes a step towards you, hesitates and then leaps off over the trellis and into the veil of night. Absolutely terrified, you look for Feral, snatch him from where he was digging a hole and quickly made your way inside the house. You immediately lock the door and peer outside. He seems to be gone.
You spend several moments inside his cottage, too frightened to venture outside. During this time the winds alter course, which transforms the warm evening’s breath to a chilly breeze. The ancient winds carry forth great swell of clouds, which soon cloaks the moon. Would this reverse Wolfe’s transformation?
It’s not long before you spot the naked Wolfe, again in his human form, lurking towards the cottage. He seems hurt, as he’s clutching his right arm. The clouds seem heavy, a storm is brewing. You decide to take a chance and help Wolfe. As you move towards the glass door your eyes meet. Wolfe looks just as frightened as you are.
Gasping for air, Wolfe asks, “What happened to me?”
You wrap a blanket around Wolfe which you found on his couch, not even taking notice of his naked being.
“Why is my arm hurt? Why am I naked and so cold? Last I remember we were having dinner. What happened beyond that is blur.”
“You do not know?” you reply. He appears to be confused and sincere about not knowing what had just occurred. You offer him a seat as you ask whether he has a first aid kit. His arm is cut rather deep and needs to be cleaned. You return with the first aid kit and close all the blinds and curtains. Whilst you clean his wound you tell Wolfe what happened. He stares back at you with teary, incredulous eyes.
“So the family curse finally caught up with me”, Wolfe says.
"What curse?" you ask.
"My family is said to be descendants of a cursed man who lived long ago. His blood was tainted with lycanthropy. He was a werewolf. He was driven away from his village, never to be found again. He left behind his wife, who was with child. I was told he was fortunately saved from the same fate of his father. I don’t understand though... why is my blood tainted and none of my forbearers? I shudder at the thought of what happened whilst I was a werewolf...”
Wolfe takes your hand.
“and how I could have hurt you. Thanks for staying and being so brave. I’m safe from turning as long as moonlight does not fall on my skin. That I know. You’ve taken care of that,” Wolfe says whilst managing a smile. “We need to find out how my forbearers suppressed the curse of the werewolf. Why am I affected only now all of a sudden? We need to investigate...”
With his now bandaged arm and the blanket cloaked over his body, Wolfe fetches an old dusty tome from his bookshelf.
“This might have the answer”, says Wolfe.
“It looks ancient”, you say.
“It is”, Wolfe responds.
He takes a seat next to you and rests the tomb on his lap for you both to see. The two of you spend part of the night paging and reading through the tome, which is handwritten by the son of Wolfe’s cursed ancestor. The tome describes all accounts of the curse of lycanthrope; the curse’s origins, how his ancestor turned almost every full moon and his search in finding a cure. An hour passes before you two finally flip to the page you were looking for... the cure!
The cure is not a conventional potion or ointment ingredient list as the two of you expected, but in the form of an enchanted silver ring. Bearing this ring would yield its bearer immune to the effects of lycanthropy.
“Now for the seemingly impossible task; where to find such a ring?” you ask.
“In my bedroom”, Wolfe replies with a smile. “My father passed away when I was small still. My mom gave me his ring when I turned 21, which is identical to the one in this illustration. I’ve worn it ever since up until the other day when scrubbed it a bit. It was in need of cleaning. I must have forgotten about it. My mind has been elsewhere the past couple of days.”
“Now lets go get it!” you exclaim.
Wolfe races towards his bedroom, barely managing to keep the blanket around his waist. You follow. He picks up the ring from his lamp table. It is an intricately designed silver ring with the head of a wolf crafted on the facing side. The wolf’s eyes are of deep red rubies. The ring looks Gothic, almost ancient and rather startling. Wolfe slides on the ring once more. It fits perfectly. As he does so, you notice his eyes glinting red for a second. The ring must have taken effect.
“I am cured, I suppose. With this ring all shall be safe from the beast inside of me which now has been tamed once more. You have seen much tonight. I too am shocked and terribly distraught of what has come to pass and what could have happened. If I was in your shoes, I would have been long gone by now”, Wolfe says.
“The reason for me staying is simple, my furry friend,” you say as you lift your right hand to show Wolfe the silver ring you are bearing. Without giving him much time to examine the ring, you remove it from your finger. Almost instantaneously your complexion turns paler, your eyes darken and your two top canine teeth grow larger which renders them protruding from your mouth. Wolfe staggers back from shock and disbelief. You manage to gather enough willpower to press the ring back on your finger. The power of your curse is great, yet you’re starting to learn to control it, rather than it controlling you.
“You’re not the only person who is cursed by some dark evil” you say rather excitedly.
“Now that I did not expect,” Wolfe replies with a shaky voice. “Are you... a vampire?”
“Indeed I am. Unlike you I knew I was cursed. It is paramount that we know. Without the ring we go ‘poof’ in sunlight, or so my folks say. I have not come across any other ‘cursed ones’ other than my family. I must admit, I was terrified when you transformed into your werewolf form, especially since I did not want to take my vampire form to defend myself. It would be the start of the ancient werewolf versus vampire war all over again,” you say. “And like you, I did not want to hurt you either.”
So follows several moments of conversation between you two nocturnal monsters. Feral and Bruce have curled up together and have been snoozing away for a while now. You remove most of your clothes and join Wolfe under the sheets of his bed. During the conversation you lightly start to flirt and tease each other under the sheets. Both of you probe the other’s body, wait a moment to get the go ahead and then play if there’s no objection. First you swirl your fingers through his coarse chest hair where he caresses your bare feet with his. Next Wolfe glides his warm hand over the curve of your flank, playing with the strap of your briefs whilst doing so. You, in the meantime, have moved your attention to his mane of hair where you massage his scalp. It doesn’t take long before Wolfe’s animal instinct and your vampiric lust takes over to execute a long kiss.
And that’s it for this story folks. The second instalment of Descendents of the Feral Claw is based on the ever terrifying werewolf. Hope you enjoy the looks of Wolfe and his cubby buddies...
“Werewolves, also known as lycanthropes from the Greek λυκάνθρωπος, λύκος (wolf) and άνθρωπος (human, man), are mythological or folkloric humans with the ability to shift shape into wolves or anthropomorphic wolf-like creatures, either purposely, by being bitten or scratched by another werewolf, or after being placed under a curse. This transformation is often associated with the appearance of the full moon, as popularly noted by the medieval chronicler Gervase of Tilbury, although it may have been recognized in earlier times among the ancient Greeks through the writings of Petronius.
Werewolves are often granted extra-human strength and senses, far beyond those of both wolves or men. The werewolf is generally held as a European character, although its lore spread through the world in later times. Shape-shifters, similar to werewolves, are common in tales from all over the world, most notably amongst the Native Americans, though most of them involve animal forms other than wolves.
Werewolves are a frequent subject of modern fictional books, although fictional werewolves have been attributed traits distinct from those of original folklore, most notably the vulnerability to silver bullets. Werewolves continue to endure in modern culture and fiction, with books, films and television shows cementing the werewolf's stance as a dominant figure in horror.”