Wolfborn

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Destiny is a strange thing. One day, I was just a simple college dropout, then...I died. Strangely enough life did not end for me there. Instead, I was introduced to a world I had thought only existed in my dreams, and given a new life. Perhaps some people are just born to die.

Chapter 1 (v.1)

Submitted: March 21, 2012

Reads: 360

Comments: 1

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Submitted: March 21, 2012

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I let out a soft sigh as I lean back in my chair, the constant clicking of keys, and the dull ringing of phones in the distance fill my ears. Looking up at the ceiling for a moment my mind wanders to thoughts of home, what I’ll make for supper, and anything else besides working in this tiny cubicle. Today has been just another long day of another long week. The stereotypical college dropout who gets a dead-end job and barely makes rent. As depressing as it may sound it still makes me grin a little thinking about how easy I thought the rest of my life would be just a few short years ago. I close my eyes for just a short moment. “Danger.” The voice sounds nearby and I snap to attention to get back to work. As my fingers click against the keyboard I let myself fall into a daze to pass the time. “...in...danger...” The unknown voice breaks my concentration and I look around for the source, but after seeing no one it's quickly forgotten.


The hours pass by and I drive home. Without the distraction of work I resume thinking about myself. Just a small town guy who dreamed of grandeur, but lacked the motivation to achieve it. Instead of studying for hours to exceed or impress I had always lost myself in the worlds of films, video games, and books.


I turn on the radio, hoping to pass the time, groaning as the song ends, and the newscaster speaks. “...panic in the streets of Chicago today as the fourth floor of an apartment complex suddenly burst into flames. Miraculously, the fire did not spread to the rest of the building, but, unfortunately, the two inhabitants of the floor did not survive. Neither the local Fire Department nor the Police have been able to discover the source of the fire. Whether this event is connected to the recent string of disasters across the country remains to be seen.” More bad news on the radio. I let out a heavy sigh and turn it back off.


Glancing out of the window I notice the sunset, it's beautiful this time of day, shadows slowly dancing around the trees, and the hills colored a dull orange. “Think I’ll take a walk when I get home...” I mumble to myself and gently press on the gas, hoping to get home a few minutes sooner.


After pulling into the driveway I quickly scale the outside stairs to the second floor of my duplex, owned by the residents of the first floor, Don and his wife, Sheryl. They are a nice couple, in their 60’s, but are completely technologically illiterate. It took weeks of me coming downstairs every couple days before they finally memorized how to check their email. However, they don’t mind that I’m occasionally late on my rent and Sheryl quite often makes cookies or cakes for me under the excuse that I remind her of her grandchildren.


I open the door to my floor and walk in, not even bothering to untie my shoes as I slip them off. My ‘half’ of the duplex is actually a full house. The only reason its called a duplex is due to the stairs connecting the living rooms. Don built it above theirs just out of boredom. I would never be able to afford something like this normally, but thankfully, the rent is dirt cheap since Don doesn’t even need the money. He and his wife won the lottery a few years ago and quickly retired to live off the payments.


Moving through the kitchen and living rooms to my room I quickly strip off my office clothes, changing into a much more casual pair of sweatpants and t-shirt. A voice whispers behind me. “Run...” I turn my head to look into the hallway for the source and shrug seeing no one. Must be watching a movie downstairs.


As I walk back to the door I hear Sheryl’s voice calling for me from the stairway in the living room. “Dustin! Would you like some leftover roast? I accidentally made too much.”


I can smell the roast from here, Sheryl is pretty good in the kitchen, and I shout down at her in reply. “Sure! I’m going for a quick jog right now though. Before it gets too dark.”


“Okay. I’ll just leave a plate for you in the kitchen when you get back.” Well, that solves the ‘What's for supper’ problem. I’m fairly certain she does this on purpose every once in awhile. One of the rare cases where the rich remember what it's like to be poor. I slip my shoes back on and walk outside, shutting the door behind me.


One of the few benefits of living out in the boondocks like this is the view. Even just from this second floor I can see the sun tinted fields in the distance. I take off down the stairs at a slow jog towards a hunting trail I had discovered in the nearby woods. Probably from Don.


About twenty minutes later I finally stop at the border of the woods, near a cliff overlooking an old dig site. One of those places where they used to dig up sandstone or lime, but it hasn’t been touched in years. Now, all that’s left is a sizable pit in the middle of nowhere. However, its the best place I know of to just sit and think. No houses or people in sight, no distractions, and, best of all, a gorgeous view of the sunset. Unfortunately, I’m just a few minutes late, and all that’s left are the few moments of blood-red sky before the sun fades into the night.


I lay down in the grass, trying to catch an early glimpse of the moon as I catch my breath. My eyes suddenly feel heavy and I close them for just a few moments. Must be more worn out today than I thought. I teeter on the edge of consciousness when a voice forces me awake. “Run!” Snapping awake I feel flush, as though I were caught doing something I wasn’t supposed to.


“Hello?! Anyone there?” I shout as I stand up. I must have dozed off for awhile as the full moon is the only source of light in the sky. At least its bright tonight. Scanning the woods I manage to spot what appears to be a small fire in the distance. That can’t be right. No one camps out here. As I move closer the smell of burning wood fills my nostrils and I shout towards the source. “Hello?”


The voice from earlier calls out again. “Run...” This time it sounds much further away than before. I move quickly towards the fire in the distance, trying to figure out what's going on, when I notice that its beginning to spread. My eyes dart across the woods, trying to find an escape, but this fire is spreading far too quickly. There isn’t a breeze and it's not dry enough for a normal fire to have spread so fast. If I had gone home right away instead of investigating this fire I may have gotten away in time, but its too late now.


I quickly move back towards the cliff, breaking off a decent sized tree branch along the way to use as a makeshift shovel, perhaps if I’m quick enough I can make a break in the ground so that the fire can’t get too far past the treeline. By the time I reach the cliff my eyes are already watering from the smoke.I desperately break up the grass near the treeline with the base of the branch and rip apart the ground with my hands, but I know its not going to be enough. Each time I glance up the fire seems to be moving faster.


Its getting more difficult to breath as the smoke fills my lungs. I’m forced to use one hand to hold my shirt up to my mouth to get a decent breath. As a last resort I get to the edge of the cliff and look over it for any possible means of escape. It's far too high to jump and there is nothing to grab on to to climb down with. Slow and painful death by forest fire. Can’t say I ever saw that coming. I look over the edge again and mutter to myself “...or quick death by falling.”


As I look back into the blaze I notice something...large...and black. Its moving toward me. With each step of whatever it is, the flames creep closer, and closer as though its controlling them, but that’s... impossible. This is reality. I must be hallucinating. The fire reaches my pitiful break in the grass and miraculously stops, even though the...thing... keeps moving through the inferno. This is pathetic. All I can do is sit and wait while my seemingly inevitable death draws closer.


As the giant monstrosity reaches the treeline I’m finally able to get a decent view of it. Its the size of a small tree, but looks almost human. The creature stops at my break in the ground, just as the flames did, and I’m finally able to witness it completely. It appears to be just solid, blackened dirt, but fire pulses around its large form as though it were muscle, and in place of eyes it has two brightly burning flames of blue.


“What do you want?!” I shout at it desperately. It doesn’t reply and merely stamps furiously at the ground I had broken up almost as if it were taunting me. I can’t die this way. Not stuck like a rat in a corner. I grip the branch tightly, it may just be a stick, but its better than nothing. “Stay back!” I yell at the creature. It merely steps over the break and lumbers towards me.


The moment the dirt-thing is within range I swing the branch at it. That was a mistake. Almost immediately after touching the creature the branch lights up in flames, scorching my right hand before I drop it, and forcing a yelp of pain from me. Before I can pull my hand back the monster lurches forward to grab my wrist and all I can feel is unbelievable agony traveling up my arm as though my skin were merely tinder to the flames. I let out a horrible scream of pain as the fire travels from my arm, to my chest, and lighting my clothes ablaze.


My vision blurs and I make a final pathetic attempt at resistance as I strike at the dirt-creature with my good hand. My hand lights up in flames the moment I make contact, resulting in another shriek of agony, and, whether out of mercy or annoyance, the creature tossed me to the edge of the cliff. The impact of the ground actually felt good. For a moment I forgot about my burning flesh.


In my hazy vision I can see the earthen monstrosity coming closer. “Move! Fall!” The voice is different this time. Stronger. I try to move my legs, but they refuse to listen. Every shallow breath is more painful than not breathing at all. Desperate, I move my body from side to side, and slowly inch myself towards the edge of the cliff until I can feel my right arm dangling over the edge. This is it. This is how I die. With one final glance at the monstrosity looming over me I rolled off the edge of the cliff.


As I fell I could see the creature glaring down at me. It had failed. Time seemed to slow as my gaze drifted towards the moon and I smiled up at it, my burnt lips cracking from the effort, then, finally, the world went black.


© Copyright 2019 Kiba Mikazuki. All rights reserved.

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