David and Nathan
David and Nathan communicated in tandem yelps and yowls, a secret cypher known only to wolves and lycanthropes. Jack headed off in a furious, bloody delirium all throughout the streets of Royal Bay communicating with strange grunts and growls to his dad.
Nathan, almost a full lupine by look and structure, gave orders to David. David walked on all four paws in a furless lupine form except for his almost human-apelike head. Nathan looked like an absolute monster almost all his top-half a wolf’s form. Except for his man-like hands with talon sharp claws his spine thicker and longer than a normal human being, and severely hunched back. Nathan’s bone structure in his bipedal hips allowed him to walk erect.
The beast, David, saw headlights approaching and threw himself upon the truck. A thud, the driver didn’t know what hit him. A screech of tires and the truck stopped on the road.
“What the…?” Bill, a scraggly gray-haired old man with a beard and overalls exclaimed as he hopped out to see what he had hit, leaving Leon, his drinking buddy, to stay in the truck.
“What did we hit, Bill?” Leon questioned sticking his head out the driver’s door window to see what was going on.
“I don’t know if it’s a dog or a man,” Bill exclaimed, “Wait to see what we hit before calling anyone.”
The man looked over at the smashed-in bumper and left headlight then whipped his head around to see in the shadows what looked like a homeless, nude man curled up in the fetal position with his injured shoulder gushing blood.
Bill knelt down, knees popping and moaning as he did so. Bill had been right on both fronts. It was a dog and a man. Cold sweat trickled down his forehead as he staggered backward and fell on his buttocks in the dirt.
“Call the police, Leon, or the FBI! We got something alien in our midst!” Bill bellowed in a slurred panic.
Concentrating on the broken mass by the road Bill failed to notice Nathan bursting out from the thickets, his muzzle biting down on Bill’s shoulder and rending the overalls strips in half.
“Ahhhhhhhh…” Bill grimaced as the beast’s head wiggled from side to side.
“What the fuck?” Leon spilt his 40 ounce liquor all over the floorboard. He saw his good friend as he was thrust up into the air and thrown like a rag doll.
Bill’s eyes began to dim as a unique hormone in wolf’s blood flooded his blood stream awaking the once hibernating and ossified larvae in Bill’s pineal gland. The larvae maturing into parasites merging with invading parasites altered, however slowly, Bill’s body from the inside out. The intensive radiance of the Moon saved him from the brink of death, illuminating his eyes until a lunacy came over him.
Leon couldn’t help but watch dumb struck as the beast that attacked Bill advanced on the truck. The upright Wolf thing beat the hood, crumpling the flimsy aluminum frame. In his panic Leon reached for the cell phone, instead of Bill’s shotgun on the rack in back of the truck which he didn’t at first remember. Bill sprang up and marched toward his truck like a man on a mission, still human, but the merged and mutated parasites began swiftly changing him from the inside out. The lunatic with torn overalls and a bloody shoulder growled, frothing at the mouth as he wrenched the driver’s side door free.
“Bill!” Leon bellowed as he jumped across the seat, back pressed up against the passenger door.
With nowhere else to go Leon kicked his feet violently wanting to have as much space between himself and his attacker. Leon looked into the eyes of the madman. Instead of a sense of rage and anger in Bill’s eyes he saw confusion and hunger…
“I’m sorry, my friend!” Leon grimaced squeezing all the weight of his leg against Bill and the truck seat.
Bill thrashed to be free, growling, spitting, and frothing at the mouth. Leon struggled to confine him stretching to reach for the shotgun on the rack. He could almost reach with his fingertips the cold steel of the gun but he didn’t dare take his eyes off of the struggling madman who used to be his friend.
Bill’s shotgun teeter tottered back and forth, the long barrel on the peg a precarious balancing act had hovered between the floor and his outstretched hand. Then the shotgun barrel fell into his hand. With one fluid motion he flipped the shotgun around so the business end pointed at Bill, sat up, twisted about and cocked the shotgun.
“I got it!” Leon smiled, revealing his upper missing incisor, chipped and crooked yellowish-brown stained teeth the product from years of poor hygiene, smoking, and drinking coffee.
Leon’s legs firmly ensnared Bill’s squirming torso and assured he would not escape until the shot was lined up. Concentrating for a perfect shot he had all but forgotten the monster Nathan at the front of the truck as Bill clawed at him and growled and yelled. Unseen Nathan moved to the passenger side window.
An explosion so loud and intense occurred that made Leon drop the gun instinctively covering his ears. He slouched down from a shattering glass and closing his lids to protect his eyes. Nathan entered the passenger window and the beast latched on and bloody fangs gnawed on Leon’s head. Leon felt intense pressure then sharp pain as blood flowed like a geyser as he began to get light headed and dizzy.
Leon’s legs released their pressure on Bill’s torso. He snatched up Leon’s broken body and peered at his bloody eyes with curiosity. Nathan’s lupine nostrils flared inhaling Leon’s aroma as a pale faced Bill watched Leon’s eyes as the light dimmed. As parasites traveling through his bloodstream Leon’s eyes began to dilate coming to life and illuminating. Nathan threw his head back and howled in triumph.
David, the injured beast, got up off the ground. His bloody shoulder was almost healed already and he galloped over toward the General Store’s parking lot. Growling, he slashed the car tires and tore the wires for the phone and electricity from the wall and smashed his way through the plate glass entrance doors.
Lydia, fifty-year resident of Royal Bay and ten-year employee squinted, putting on her glasses the fire’s light alerted her to three figures sprinting toward the convenience store parking lot. A display of menthol cigarettes resting on the exhibition shelf fell on the floor. The loyal convenience store employee screamed as she ducked, concealing herself behind the cash register and counter.
Jack jumped through the smashed in door, then jumped over the counter towards Lydia the instinct of separating the weak and the old first over-coming him. The lunatics Bill and Leon, along with David, were down on all fours, all split up taking the three aisles.
“What’s happening?” Morgan, a high school dropout and a new clerk to the general store asked Harrison, his assistant manager, as he came out of the walk-in cooler.
“I don’t know… you be quiet,” urged Harrison.
He peeked out from the double doors in the back room, hands resting on the water heater clasping a cigarette as smoke wafted up toward the nicotine stained ceiling. Harrison quickly shut the cooler door and with frantic gestures moved up Morgan so he would not be seen in the door’s window.
Morgan’s chest started to pound, confused, he wanted to ask a million questions but like a good employee he kept quiet, he obeyed.
“I think we are getting robbed,” Harrison whispered.
From Harrison’s vantage point he could see three men, one naked and on all fours running back and forth through the aisles. The lunatics knocking down chips and candy in one row then knickknacks and motor oil in the other row. Two liter soda bottles on the ends fell to the ground as a group, bursting and soaring to the ceiling like rockets blasting off playing havoc about the room, shattering the straight florescent bulbs in a row overhead. He couldn’t see Lydia under the counter but he could hear her moans and gasps, her pleas for help and her vicious attacker’s growls.
“We need to get out of here,” Harrison whispered, after a long inhalation to steady his nerves he smashed his cigarette out in the ashtray.
Morgan nodded in agreement with Harrison and together they ran through the hallway to the emergency exit. The uniformed duo tripped over mops in the dump sink. Packs of toilet paper destined for the customer bathrooms fell, rolling out toward the water heater. The siren wailed as the two opened the emergency door.
Shouting a joyous cry in unison they exclaimed, “We made it!”
Morgan and Harrison both smiled; relieved they made it out alive but their expressions of relief quickly turning to terror. They thought they would be safe from harm once they were outside of the general store; however, they were now staring at an unsavory beast, a fairytale bursting out the pages of fantasy and into real life.
They both stared at a monster that stood erect like a man, but had the upper half of a body that looked just like a wolf. The creature had its hands up to its ears from the piercing sirens, the red light of the emergency exit flashing across its face which held an expression of pain.
“What’s going on, Harrison?” Morgan questioned trying not to look away from its horrible façade, urine running down his legs.
“I don’t know, Morgan, let’s get out of here!” Harrison smacked Morgan on the back, “let’s get the fuck out of here!”
The monster hesitated, distracted from the blaring noise causing it excruciating pain, as the two employees took the opportunity to turn and flee. Fast as Morgan and Harrison’s instincts were to run from the danger, the monster’s lupine instinct to give chase was quicker. The fangs of the monster sinking into Morgan’s shoulder stopped him in his tracks; his feet lifting up off the ground. Monster’s claws sliced into Harrison’s leg, his injured leg giving out beneath him as he stumbled towards the parking lot. Nathan’s monster sniffed at the armpits of both of the employees to determine if the Wolf’s Blood coursed in their veins before killing them.
The growing pack all but slaughtered the rest of the hiding patrons in the General Store. Bill jumped out of the building and moved onto the parking lot. He let out all his rage on the gas pumps. Bill couldn’t help but to grimace, his ears too sensitive to the screech and squeal of metal bending, the gasoline flowing forth hissing like a snake. What once were three lunatics come to town had grown exponentially. Two patrons in the General Store were going through the change, Leon, Nathan, David and Jack made mayhem on Main Street. Now the lunatics made their way along the train tracks leaving a path of death and bloodshed in the unsuspecting town of Royal Bay.