Nocturnesque Chapter 10

by Jeff Lewis (aka The Werewolf!) © 1985

He's in trouble. I could see that right away by the jerky movements. I called Jen over.

She looked into him and confirmed my fears, his wolf form was beginning to dominate. Jen lay down and I saw her astral form lift free and head over to him.

As she approached, a huge, incredibly feral form leapt from his body and struck at her. It lunged and ripped pieces of her form from her. She was down almost instantly. I quickly recalled her to her body and helped her in. We were in worse trouble than we thought.

She got up, staggered by the attack. She looked at me and her look told me the worst. We might not be able to free him and control the wolf-form.

What I couldn't understand was how powerful the wolf-form was in astral form. It didn't make sense. A wolf is very intelligent but shouldn't be able to make such effective use of an astral form. It was as if it knew just how to attack on this level.

Or perhaps it had help.

I tended to her as best as I could. She would need plenty of rest and there was precious little else we could do.

Steve came up to us and shifted. He held her unconscious form in his arms and stroked her soft fur. What the hell is that thing? I've never seen or heard of anything like it. He pulled her tighter to his chest. She might know, if she's ok.

Jen groaned and muttered a single word: Gevaudan.

I stood fixed in place as some powerful force gripped me and held me rooted. I was first terrified, then angry. Now I was enraged.

First some freaks in a backwater town sic their chief loony on me and turn me into a werewolf. Then I'm stuck in this form and they come back to taunt me. I find my self killing things and eating them, and liking it! And, now! Now this stupid body decides it's in business for itself! Well, I've had it.

I gritted my mental teeth and strained to move. It was just like one of those horrible dreams where some great monster is coming to cleave you into little pieces but you're totally paralysed. You can't move a muscle and you know that if you could just move anything, even just a little bit, you'd be free.

In my mind I screamed. I was not going to spend the rest of my life as a defective wolf! I concentrated on one paw. I focused all my mind and will on it and begged it to move. It did.

The paralysis collapsed like a house of cards. I went down just after it. I hit the ground and gave a woof as the air was punched from my lungs. I groaned and a whine followed. I was free to move.

I got up and it was like all four legs were off on their own. I fell down. I tried again and stayed up a little longer, then fell down again. This was starting to hurt.

I relaxed and tried to get into this wolfs eye view I had and slowly got up. This time I could do it. I was off again.

After that little shock, I'd had enough. I could continue to deny this to myself but I was getting no where. There was only one reasonable course left. I had to find her and get her to help me. Besides, I needed her very badly. The ache she left in me was growing stronger every moment.

I circled around the forest and headed back to the beach.

Jen was sleeping fitfully in Steve's arms when I caught the first trace of him. He was returning. I told Steve to wait here; I'd go and meet him. Jen stirred and mumbled. I couldn't make out what she was trying to send to me, just a faint warning.

I sat there trying to decide if I should go or stay. Something very wrong had happened and only she knew just what it was. I also knew that if I waited much longer, my love would be in danger of losing his soul.

I turned to Steve for help and he could offer none.

He needs me, I told Steve. I can't wait for her, I've got to go to him. Steve nodded.

I rose and loped to my love. As I approched him, I could sense a strangeness about him. I felt a twinning around him, as if there were more than one person there.

He spotted me and began to run to me. He seemed happy to see me but I was assailed by a dread that grew as he came closer. Involuntarily, my tail curled between my legs and I began whining. I wanted to run.

A shape loomed to my right. Steve had joined me. I could see the same fear in his face and this made me all the more afraid.

Finally, he reached us. He lept and tried to tear my throat. Steve pounced on him and pulled him down. As I watched in horror, I saw sharp fangs dig into Steve's leg drawing blood. I was frozen. I couldn't fight him, but couldn't let Steve be hurt.

Another shape flashed past me and barrelled into the fray. Jen had joined the fight. I had to stop them from hurting him. I lept in and became entangled in the flailing mass of bodies. I found myself hurling through the air and landing away from them. I shook myself and stood up. He was standing apart from Steve and Jen. He had grown so viscious looking, so terrifyingly wild.

We couldn't fight him on this level. I lifted free of my form and stood above the field. A moment later I was joined by Jen and Steve. As we watched, the whole field of view shimmered and became chaotic. I felt ripples of ether washing through me. It made me nauseous.

A great shudder passed around us and then the world was set still. Before us was a huge horrid distortion of a wolf. It slavered and drooled. Its fur was long and matted, knotted. It was almost sickening to look at. Beside the monsterous thing was a small inert human form tied to the creature by a fiery silver cord.

I looked to my side and saw the female wolf that was my counterpart. She was frightened and stood shivering, her tail tightly curled between her legs. I shared her fear.

Steve and Jen stood off to the side, counterparts at their sides.

We moved together and held hands. Our counterparts pressed their bodies close to us and the six of us gathered strength.

The monster snarled and sprayed its sickly saliva over the ground. It lept forward, dragging the soul of my love along like a toy doll.

There was no way we could handle something like that. The evil the thing reeked was passing through us. I felt as if I were bathing in acid.

The only hope we had was to make it revert to human form. Then it wouldn't have such power over him and we could get him to someone who may be able to help.

We concentrated and formed a thick wall in the aether. I could hear its enraged howling, the sound of its smashing into the barrier. It would only take a few minutes to get through.

Steve went back to the lower world and readied himself. Jen and I released the wall and quickly punched out a psychic blast, hoping it would distract the monster. It didn't really do very much and the thing began approaching, walking stiffly in a parody of a hunt.

Jen jumped down to the lower world and left me. I prayed they would be finished soon. I knelt and put my arms around my counterpart. She whimpered and licked my face.

I could feel the hot smell of its breath on my skin. I looked up and into blood red eyes, rimmed with mucous and slime. I closed my eyes and held on to my counterpart expecting to die in that instant.

A hand grabbed me and shoved me away. Looking up, my mate was conscious and had positioned himself before the monster. The thing was holding back. I could tell it wanted to rip into him but was held back by some force. My mate stepped forward and plunged his arm into the monsters maw. A brilliant flare of light seared my eyes. For a moment, I saw my mate, his wolf counterpart and a hideous man, all three chained in silver.

Then I was back in the lower world and in my human form. Across from me, my mate, now human as well, was being helped up by Steve and Jen. I felt as if I had been used to beat a rug. I ached everywhere. I got up shakily and went to my love and held him. He looked into my eyes and a weak smile crossed his lips. He passed out.

He should be safe for now, Jen said. How he managed to get free of the monsters grip, I'll never know.

Steve shifted back to wolf and ran for my house. He was going to bring back clothes for all of us. We were still all quite naked.

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