Claws and Paws

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Horror  |  House: Booksie Classic
A young sergeant is sent after a peculiar case that may involve the fabled...werewolf.

Submitted: May 13, 2008

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Submitted: May 13, 2008

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It was on December 28th when I heard the news. Detective Cardiner, a red-faced, stout sort of man, told me that the first person I should call was Chumley, who was the chief inspector. I have never worked with Chumley. He's a secretive man, but i've heard he's a brilliant mind. He said I was to meet him in Little Greening, the village where the murders had taken place. The murders that I had been told of this morning. And these murders, they were unusual in the most obvious sense. The drive into Little Greening was a long and tedious one, but one which I later found out was worthy. As our tiny car passed village after village, the air went from a chilling wintery morning to sunlit, warm afternoon. After endless paddocks of sheep and cows, there was a notable change in scenery. The buildings became higher and more frequently seen, but there was not a person in sight. For, you see, Little Greening was covered in rumours of beasts and birds that survived in no other forest, in perhaps the world. It is thought that these horrendous murders have not begun now, that they are an old habit. There are many who joke, who humor upon the believers of what happens in the forest, but these jokes are soon stopped once the unfortunate jester is told of the circumstances of what has occured there. As we jigged up and down the cobbled street, we passed inns and taverns, to find that faces peered out of grimy windows, hiding, watching, wondering on. It was then that I realized the man on the road. "Stop, Driver!" I cried, for the man did not appear to have any intention of moving. The man was wearing a long cloak, in a silky tan fabric. He wore high boots and had thick black hair. His eyes were a deep hazel, an inquisitive hazel, and his mouth was set in a thoughtful line. I stepped out of the car. "Hello, Sergeant Brimston." said the man. "Hello, Inspector Chumley." I replied. He towered over me as he said, "I assume you heard about the murders." "Yes." said I. "Shall we walk to the crime scene?" "No, not yet. We must question the witnesses. Surely, you know that?" I blushed. Was the Inspector testing me? If so, would I be sent back to London, with nothing but a fading memory? "Well, yes, why, I erm-let's go, yes?" I stuttered. My first minute in the case, and I was already bumbling like an old fool! The tall inspector led me to a dingy looking motel, where once we entered in, a portly woman with a merry face chortled. "Ah! Visitor, Chumley?" The inspector nodded to the woman. "Greta, Sergeant Brimston would like a room." She winked at me. "It's obvious you're a visitor, Sergeant! Your stance, your speak, your clothes! Especially your clothes, be careful no-one steals them!" "You've been watching me?" Greta guffawed. "The people in this town love a good gossip and they aren't afraid to admit it! I was watching from the window, Sergeant." As we left the motel, I asked Chumley why Greta knew his name. He gave me a mocking look. "Brimston, how could you not know? This is my birth town, I've lived here for 40 years!" Rather suspicious...How come Chumley only reported in to the police of London when these murders had been going on for a long time? Ah yes, I thought. Someone else reported them. To think, living in such a suspicious town! I had a horrible feeling about the town. Everyone was so suspicious that it seemed as though we would never find the killer. The questioning was dreadful. Some witnesses mumbled, some hadn't even seen the crime, but most of them were just tedious. After a long night of work under a bright light, I was amazed to come out and find that the town had transformed. Little Greening is all very well and fine when it is in the light of day, and there are birds and people that are at least visible. But, when the cover of night falls, it is transformed, mutated into a place of nightmare, where every corner holds some kind of danger, and the only people out are thieves...or something worse. We walked back towards the motel, but Chumley took the left lane. "Surely we can't go on?" I asked, hopefully waiting for him to retreat. "No." he said. "We must survey the scene of the crime." I walked into the clearing and stared at the man under a sheet.There were bloody rips across his chest, that were covered by a shredded shirt. His skin was white from being tossed into the freezing river, and a scream was frozen on his face. I noticed something, "Inspector?" "Yes?" "These scratches...they look old...so, if the murderer had scratched this man, then what was the point of throwing them in the river?" Chumley looked down. "To hide the evidence." "But these scratches, they aren't human! And no animal is intelligent enough to know to hide the evidence!" I said, quickly. "Except for a-" "Now, now, that's just an old rumour, it's been around for forty years! There are no-" "Werewolves." I said, finishing his sentence. This was the famed and fabled man-beast of Little Greening. This was why parents locked their children in their houses. This was the true murderer of the man before me. "We must retreat, we can always return in the morrow." said the inspector quietly. "Yes, let's." As I left the forest clearing, I noticed a glimmering stone in the grass. It was a topaz, and it was finely cut, manmade. I decided to leave it there. The next morning, we did an intensive scan over the whole area. It was a brightful and warm day, and the horrors of the shadowy night had washed away. The Inspector told me to go back to the village and fetch him and myself a treat, and a cold gin. I went, in bitter irritation. The inspector had treated me like a child, like an immature blotch in his life, since the day of my arrival. Were we not partners? Why wouldm't it have been acceptable for he to fetch the drinks? I was in a right huff as I strode into the bar. "Brimston, why isn't Chumley here?" asked the muscly barkeeper once he had collected our drinks. "He's back at the crime scene." I hope I hadn't sounded too agitated, I shouldn't like it if he thought me bitter. "Ah, that's a shame, a shame. I wished to talk to him about the town meeting, it's on every full moon." I realized that tonight was going to be a full moon. "You should have seen him last town meeting! He wore such a fine hat, it was bedecked with bright jewels! Diamonds, I think..."
This was indeed a peculiar thought.
That night, we had no time to come to the meeting, for we were staying at the scene to work. Bah, how the inspector annoys me so! A night of relaxing was sacrificed for his precious investigation!
He looked at me sternly. "Have you discovered anything?"
I cleared my throat. "Yes, I did. I discovered who the werewolf is."
Inspector Chumley gave me a strange wolf. "Don't be a fool, Brimston, there's no such nonsense as a-"
"Yes there is. The rumours have been around for forty years, and that is as long as you have been alive. Only an intelligent man-beast such as a werewolf is clever enough to hide the evidence. That diamond on your hat has been lost since last full moon, when you killed this man. Inspector Chumley, YOU are the werewolf!"
Chumley cackled. "Congratulations, Sergeant. You have cracked your last case."
I wondered what this could mean, but I was quickly blinded by the ivory circle in the sky.
The full moon.
The inspector face sharpened, thick, matted fur shooting from his scalp and skin. From his thin lip, long, needle-sharp fangs slid out, ferociously. He turned to me, a murderous look in his yellow eyes.
I ran, and ran, and here I hide, beneath a tree, grabbing my journal, writing this mad story down, and I hope that you can find me, and rescue me, before the werewolf finds me. Please, I need to-
P.S. No one knows what this journal entry means, and the author, a British sergeant, was deemed missing.


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