Hunted – Part 4

I know, I know, it’s been almost two months since the last post! I’m terrible at this! I’ve also been really busy with life and drawing and photo shoots and work and whatnot. Yeah, basically I took a two month break from writing anything but emails, notes, and random ideas. So, to kick things off again, here is the next chapter for my werewolf story. FINALLY I can start writing the fun stuff! Enjoy!

 Hunted – Part 4

We sat in the kitchen of my house ten minutes later. Neither of my parents were home from work yet, so there was no one there to question why we weren’t still at school.

“You’ve got a really nice house,” Luka said, awkwardly shifting in his chair.

“Thanks.”

I waited for him to say something more, but he seemed to be consumed with drinking his tall glass of water as slowly as possible.

“Luka, what happened? Why were you in the girls’ bathroom?”

He looked up at me, obviously startled that I was being so forward.

“I felt sick. I thought I might throw up, so I went to the nearest place. I honestly didn’t realize I was in the wrong bathroom until you came in.”

I rummaged through the cupboards as he spoke, searching for something to snack on. I knew there were crackers hidden somewhere in the kitchen, it was just a matter of finding where my mother had stashed them.

“Do you still feel sick? I can make you some soup if you like.” I pulled out a package of instant chicken noodle soup and showed it to him.

“No, I’m fine. I could use a coffee, though,” he said, “Want to come?”

“Downtown? Yeah sure, just let me find my bus pass.”

“My car is at the school, let’s just go get that.” He stood up and went for the door without another word.

The walk back to the school was a hurried one. He seemed to be walking much faster than he had on the way to my house, and I had some trouble keeping up with him. I barely had time to think before we arrived at his car, both of us quickly hopping in before he stomped on the gas and screeched out of the parking lot.

“What’s the rush?” I asked loudly, making sure he could hear me over the roar of the engine.

“I don’t want any of the teachers to see us leaving.”

“That didn’t matter when we left the first time, I don’t think they’ll notice now.”

I said nothing in response, gripping the door handle tightly with my right hand. He was more on edge that I had ever seen him, and I was beginning to wonder if it had been a good idea to get in the car with him or not.

He must have noticed that I was scared, because he slowed down and glanced over at me apologetically.

“Let’s just hit up the drive through. I don’t want to be around big groups of people right now,” he said.

I nodded, but said nothing. He seemed to be trying to calm down, but it wasn’t working very well. I could see that he was still shaking slightly, and I could hear in his voice that something was bothering him.

“Luka, what’s wrong? I’ve never seen you like this, I’ve never seen you anything but calm. What’s going on?”

He looked over at me briefly, as though he wanted to tell me but wasn’t sure if he should. His mouth opened but closed immediately as he decided not to speak.

I sighed and sat back in the seat, knowing we were close to the coffee shop of choice and that I could try to talk to him after he got his coffee. I preferred tea, but I knew how people got if they needed coffee and didn’t get it, so I said nothing.

He pulled into the drive through quickly and ordered for both of us, paying and taking our drinks before speeding away again, this time a little slower than the first.

As I sipped on my peppermint tea, I realized we were headed toward the highway that headed north out of town. Before I could say anything, Luka began talking.

“Okay, so this is going to sound completely insane, but I really want to you hear me out. I need help, and I really need someone who might listen to what I have to say.”

“Alright, I’m listening.”

“The night of the storm, when I showed up at your house and you let me stay the night, I was attacked. I thought someone was following me, so I just tried walking faster, and he caught up like it was nothing. But then it wasn’t a he, it was an it.”

I looked at him with eyebrows raised, waiting for him to continue.

“Then I thought maybe it was a dog, but it was way too big to be a dog. And it walked on two legs, not four. And I know this is going to make me sound crazy, but I honestly think I was attacked by a werewolf.”

I was too shocked to respond right away. He glanced at me several times, waiting for me to say something, but I wasn’t sure what to say. Part of me was suddenly scared for my life, worried that maybe he was losing his mind and that I was in danger merely by being in the same car as him. But another part of me was trying to think logically.

“Are you sure it wasn’t a dog and you just happened to see it when it was jumping at you so it looked like it was on its back feet? Maybe you just couldn’t get a good look at it because of the storm.”

“I know what I saw, Alex. That thing was like no dog I’ve ever seen. And a dog bite doesn’t explain the other things.”

“Other things? What other things?” I felt myself tense up.

“How I’ve been feeling all week. I feel angry for no reason, and my hearing! I’ve been hearing things I’ve never been able to hear before, things no one else around me can hear. And the smells. I can tell you what’s in food just by smelling it, and I’ve never been able to do that before. Something is going on with me, and I have no idea what else it could be from.”

He stared ahead as he drove, knuckles white as he held his steering wheel in a fierce death grip. I could see that he was really shaken, and he seemed to believe what he was saying, but what he said made no sense.

“Maybe what happened during the storm just traumatized you. I mean, werewolves aren’t real. They were made up for the purpose of scaring people and nothing else. Maybe there’s another explanation.”

“What other explanation? I feel like my skin is crawling, like something might burst out of me at any given moment, and I’ve been feeling weird random pain all over since it happened.”

Taking another sip of tea, I waited for him to continue, scared to say anything in case it set him off. The last thing I needed to do was make him angry while he drove further away from civilization. When he didn’t say anything more, I took a deep breath and let it out slowly.

“Luka,” I began quietly, “Maybe you should see a doctor or something. There might be a perfectly good explanation for what you’re going through right now.”

He looked over at me with a glare and turned back to the road in front of us.

“I get that you don’t believe this stuff, but I was really hoping I could trust you with this. I thought you’d listen to me, to what I have to say.”

We sped down the highway in silence for a while longer, watching trees and endless rolling hills pass by. Nearly two hours later the car began to slow, and he turned on the blinker to turn onto a narrow dirt road.

My heart began thumping loudly in my chest, unsure of what he was thinking and looking for a way out if I had to run. With nothing but forest surrounding us, I took note of the direction of the highway just in case.

It was more than an hour before he stopped driving on the bumpy road and pulled up next to a clearing. With nothing better to do, I turned to him and asked if he was feeling better.

“A little,” he said quietly, but I could see he was still shaking. “I just need some air.”

“And we drove all the way out here for some fresh air?”

“I just wanted to have some space to think. And there’s a really nice view from the landing of that hill over there.” He pointed to a nearby outcropping of rocks with grassy patches and small bushes scattered all over it. There was a small flat area about halfway up that looked only about the size of a small room.

“You want to go for a hike?”

“It only take about half an hour to get there from here. You can stay here if you’d rather, but I would like some company.”

I hesitated, but he watched me with a pleading look and I shrugged.

“Sure, I’ll come.”

He flashed a thankful smile and began leading the way.

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