Friday, June 10, 2011
The night's darkness has slipped away, leaving limited places for a wild animal to find shelter. Ron squeezes through the broken slats across the doorway of an abandoned building. He curses as the wood catches in his fur. Slipping behind some debris, he watches the room, seeking any sign of movement.
Moving warily into an open area of the floor, Ron stretches. Bones move, joints cracking. The fur recedes as skin stretches to cover his re-organizing form. Stifling back a cry of pain, Ron huddles on the dirty floor until his equilibrium stabilizes. When he can finally stand without shaking, the werefox begins to explore. His head is pounding from lack of sleep, and maybe just a bit too much alcohol. His stomach growls from lack of food. A fly lands on his bare skin, making him twitch and curse the lack of clothing.
Peering through the slats over the windows, Ron tries to see a street sign. No luck. Frustration eats at him. His steps take him around the room, pacing as he tries to think. His cell phone was in his jeans. Those were left under the cab when he changed. He sighs, realizing he has lost the dolphin necklace as well, his only link with the woman with whom he had wanted to spend the rest of his life. Sinking to the floor, the tears spill over, slipping down his cheeks.
All he had wanted was a night to forget the pain, to be alone and think. Somehow it had been easier when he thought she had run away. Knowing she had died, tortured for some crazy's entertainment... He rubs his hands over his face. Half the time, he wanted to join her. To find her in the Afterlife, and pray they would come back together. Then he ran into the ghouls, or rather, they chose him for their next victim.
He had managed to get away. Was well on his way across town, in fact, when he crossed the path of the pack of strays. If it had been one or two, getting away would have been a piece of cake. But this was five. The smallest one was smaller then he was. Every time he had found a bolthole, the damned animal would ferret him out. They would have had him too, if something hadn't spooked them as he tore down this alley.
Now he was stuck in a catch-22. If he heads out in his fox form, he can't read signs or get directions. or... he could run into those damned dogs again. If he goes out in his human form, he won't get help either. Being nude might get him arrested, but not taken seriously. His stomach growls again. A mouse scurries along the wall and Ron watches it. His thoughts go into survival mode. He has to make it back to the Tavern, or maybe one of the patrols. They need to know that the Ghouls have found a way to trap victims. That, and that they are taking live prey, not carrion. Watching the mouse forage, Ron lets himself go, making the painful transition to fox. Very shortly, the mouse is no more.
Finding a corner, Ron curls up to get a little sleep. His mind still revolves on how to find his way, how to get back to the people who could help. Ron resolves to find a patrol when the sun goes down. That or a street kid. They'd get him back to Tori. His eyes drift closed as sunlight creeps through the cracks in the boards.