Devon hid for two days before he felt safe enough to come out of hiding. Now he feverishly looked for signs to find the hiding places of the growing infected. He dug up old track marks, dead carcasses and searched houses long abandoned by their owners.
Lost in thought he remembered his last run-in with Aticus and his new pack. Touching the wound gingerly with his hands he could feel scars. Devon feared any disruptions that threatened the human’s imaginary dominance and Aticus had been doing just that, disrupting their fragile civilization. He survived more inquisitions than he cared to count. Many of his brethren were lost to Catholic funded torture and slaughter. Many, many more atrocities were perpetrated by the God’s Light organization. Many loved ones, friends and pack mates were lost to the horror of fire, acid, and silver blade. Even Aticus almost lost his life because of them, if not for Devon’s quick cunning and reflexes.
It was still light outside; the stifling heat had finally broken. Signs that summer had almost come to an end and soon fall would be near. The fragrances of bald cypresses and black oaks mixed with corn and tobacco had gotten powerful. The wild grass, which had grown higher and wilder, assaulted his senses. He couldn’t help but think of that reporter, Amy. He thought of her smooth skin and her baby face that looked so innocent but most of all her eyes. Her deep blue eyes were so insightful.
Nearly to the thicket of brush downwind before he could smell anything Devon heard a minute sound coming in his direction. He perked up, excited, wandering just shy a few yards from him the meal his body so desperately craved. He saw a magnificent buck with antlers sprouting off in many different directions, sinewy shoulders, and a huge neck. It had a beautiful rust-blonde colored pelt. Devon’s blood began to boil; his eyes dilated and began to glow, the hair on his neck stood erect. Famished and weak, helpless to stop it he felt a change coming on. The buck and a human Devon locked eyes. The buck’s feet were frozen in fear. Numbness came over him, nerves firing in succession, he had grown accustomed to as bones broke all over his body to accommodate the coming form. He muttered an indistinguishable sound as his jaw broke on both sides simultaneously. Eyes watered as his skin stretched and tore. Rational thought harder to keep in his head as instincts took over.
Before the buck could move Devon reacted with blinding speed. Claws where there were once hands went straight for its neck. With one strong jump the metamorphosing Devon locked on to his prey. The twisted mass of deer and Wolf-thing fought horn to claw until white fur and fine Brown hair amalgamation fell to the dirt.
Warm blood trickled down to his muzzle; salty coppery sweet sustenance instantly gave him ease. And with the deer’s dying breaths he transformed back into his human self. Devon felt guilty as he watched the deer die. Deer’s head spinning around like the antlers were too heavy for him. If not for starvation he would’ve been in more control of his animal self and instincts would have flowed easier. He could have gone for brainstem instead of nicking the jugular. He ate like a glutton and he didn’t stop until his stomach seemed about to burst. His belly full, he needed a nap but no use trying to nap now. Hs he brushed his white blood stained hair from his eyes and sat up on his knees.
“Well, might as well,” he remarked. Naked, the blood of his kill was getting thick and flaky and he was miles away from any stream for enclosure he knew about. “It is like a good stretch, isn’t it?”
With his distinguishing features, pointy ears, fine hair all about his entire chiseled body he stuck out like a sore thumb if anybody happened upon him. He took a deep breath and not like before when he was sick from hunger and blood thirsty he mentally willed his change. Waves like electricity came over him and ran up and down his body from head to toe. It felt like pure ecstasy, being in control. He struck his palm into the dirt and took a big deep breath. The transformation was instantaneous and almost pain free and human thoughts were easier to maintain now that he’d fed.