A Bitten's Tale
The young Wife and her family had parked up at the side of a river in Wales. They had parked up early to try and hunt dinner, do clothes washing and sort the van. The Wife starting a campfire for warmth, light and cooking, while looking after their 2 young children. Her Husband, setting up a snare to try and catch fresh meat for dinner. He was successful, almost too easily he had caught a hare just turning from its winter white to brown. A male hare probably distracted with hunting for a mate at that time of year. The Husband was pleased with the catch but his Wife not as much. She knew tales from her family that the hare was sacred to them, a protector perhaps, so much so that she knew the elders wouldn’t kill one for offending some old tradition. The Husband didn’t put much stock in the old stories if he even knew them at all. But the Hare was now dead and the family were hungry so the young Wife couldn’t let the sacrifice go to waste. Hare, potatoes and carrots into a stew as a last normal family meal, but she wasn’t yet to know that. The smell of the simple meal floating in the air and carried into the dimming light. Had she known what was attracted by the scent she would have left right there never to look back.
After dinner, the young Wife was washing up in the river while the children slept. She heard something across the river in the woods opposite, thinking it was too late to look that night with the promise of heavy rain in the darkening sky, she planned to go look before breakfast. Had she known what she heard she would have left right there never to look back.
The rain started not long after and the family retreated to the van, to wrap up and keep dry and warm. It was March and still dark by 6pm so there was a long boring night ahead. This didn’t help her forget about the noise across the river. By Midnight she was awake again, the rain on the van had stopped in the last hour or so. Perhaps it was the lack of noise that had woke her. The nearly full moon outside gave lots of light. She got up and went outside. Had she known what she would see she would have left right there never to look back.
Her breath seen in the cold air. She wrapped herself in the blanket and went to get fresh water from the river to make tea on the fire. The grass was wet and slippy from the earlier rain, but the air smelled clean and new. At the river the bright moonlight sparkled on the water, illuminating some stepping stones to get to the other side that she hadn’t noticed earlier. What luck, she wouldn’t even get her feet wet. The rain had stopped, enough light to see by, steppingstone across the water… the last lure was her hearing a noise of a snapped twig over the other side. Her curiosity got the better of her as it usually did, that and her boredom of inactivity of the forced early sleep. Now she was wide awake. And the noise was heard again. If only she had known, there might still have been time to leave right there and never to look back.
The only other sound was that of the rushing water in the swollen bone cold river. The evening was so quiet like all the night prey were holding their breath, hiding. If she had known better she would have been hiding too. But no, the young Wife put down her kettle pot and stepped boldly, unafraid onto the first stepping stone, then another. Looking up she thanks the Gibbous moon for its light. Too late, too late to flee now, perhaps it was always too late.
The young Wife called into the darkness of the trees, into the shadows of damp lingering mists where she thought she caught movement. “Is someone there? Do you need help”? Stillness and expectation was her only answer. Others might have heard the low throaty rumble of a growl but her ears did not pick up the warning. She made the final step across to the other side. One foot on the new shore bank, her other about to make her balance more secure on the wet muddy slope so she could look further in. She looked down so she wouldn’t fall back. Too late, too late to know, too late to hear, too late to see, too late to flee.
The large black fury beast, quickly sprang from the shadowed mists, its saliva dripping fangs sinking into her upper thigh. It’s heavy hulking weight knocking the young now bitten Wife to the ground. Pain, so much pain that no other thoughts registered in the young Wife’s mind. The fangs biting deeper not letting go, the copper smell of her blood and the wet shaggy stench of the beast merged. Pain, so much pain and heat searing through her thigh. She does not know if she screamed. She does not remember if she pleaded to be released. From the ground, her eyes could see the moon behind the back of the hulking creature with its vice jaws clamped onto her flesh. A silent remaining thought, the last prayer to the night’s glorious moon. “Help me, please save me!” the young Wife thought as her mind was overcome by the RAGE entering her blood.
The Wife bit back, as hard as she could onto the ear of the beast. The pain, the fear, the FURY giving her a spark to fight back. Perhaps she didn’t hurt it, perhaps it was only a surprise, but the beast shook its head with her as a rag doll and its fangs tore free it lost its hold. The violent shake of its head sending the young Wife down the slope of the wet muddy bank into the bone cold rushing water of the river. The cold water shocking her body, washing out the bitten wound, slowing the bleeding with its icy touch, but most importantly taking her quickly out of sight of the beast so it couldn’t bite her again. So it didn’t bite again to kill her if that’s what it intended.
Later she awoke on a beach, drenched, shivering from the heat of a bite or cold of the water it doesn’t matter. Not knowing how she got so far or how long it had been hours… surely not days?. She made her way slowly back up river unsure how many times she lost consciousness, only wanting to find her family, worried she would find their bodies. The camp was gone and only debris and a few drops of blood splatter remained. But Who’s? WHO! Was this a blessing… her crime... her curse…? She still doesn’t know.
5 years later to the day almost to the hour of her body’s change, she got her revenge with the aid of her pack named Temperance. They had been hunting a biter for months locally. Just missing it as it attacked, again and again, women it wanted, women it killed for no known reason other than spite, other than looking the same, kin or no, it obsessed. Tracking the beast to a local golf course, the pack cornered their pray at last. It was not a long battle, not an honourable one for at least two present. It was a needed battle, A bloody battle for cleansing and for piercing the festering wounds of history. For ripping away a scab to let the venom tightly held within out. The Island kin are safer for the fall of this corrupted Lupus beast. We got it. The bastard will bite nothing and no-one again.
The above I speak as true to my memory,
Naomi "Reads the Threads" O'Mannion
Galliard Talesinger of Oak Vale
Adren, Born of Fianna, Bitten into the Nation
OOC: Craft 5 Author if you are reading the tale.
Player Email: Josie R
Storyteller Email: staff list