Chapter 1- Life in the city
A lone howl echoed through the city. Humans couldn’t hear it, couldn’t understand it. Didn’t believe in it. Other creatures could hear it though and they did believe it. Like other wolves for example. A young male wolf lifted his head to the sound, ears perked, muzzle titled slightly but pointed halfway to the sky. His bright yellow eyes closed for a minute and he lowered his head again, turning back to what he was previously doing. He hopped down from the ledge of concrete that used to be part of a building, landing silently on his four paws.
His fur had multiple colors ranging from gray on top to an almost blond color near his paws. Curiosity got the best of the wolf and he soon started to wonder where the howl had come from. Was there actually another wolf in the city? It had been a while since he’d seen another of his kind. Way too long. Thinking about this got him more eager to find out if he had imagined the howl out of longing or if it was real. So he went to find out. It was better than getting chased by Nobles all day.
Even when he wasn’t in the broken down part of the city it was still gray and dead. It seemed like there was no life to it, like someone had sucked it all away. The male wolf changed, now in disguise, looking like a human. It was easy to trick them. Especially when they didn’t care anymore.
How pathetic. To give up so easily. It made the timber wolf sick that the humans had dropped like flies so easily as the years passed. Was it the end of the world? It didn’t matter. He’d continue to live without giving up, keeping his pride and will to live strong. Besides, he actually had a goal. Yeah. Something to work for and accomplish. Something to live for.
The wolf smiled a bit to himself as he continued down the street, avoiding eye contact with any humans he passed. There were a few broken down buildings even in the best parts of the doomed city. People who were forced to live on the streets gave menacing glances at whoever walked by. Soon the wolf came to another abandoned, run-down, part of the city. Or at least it seemed that way.
A few seconds later he was surrounded by about seven near adult humans who had formed a circle around him, preventing his escape and causing him to have to stop walking. He could smell gunpowder on them. He raised the cautious scale up a notch. Some of them had more obvious weapons on them, holding them or having them tied to their waists. Things like poles or metal bars. The wolf stuffed his hands in his jacket pockets, a bored expression on his face while he glanced at the humans.
One of the humans walked up closer to him by a few steps. The leader maybe? The wolf wondered. He didn’t take his eyes off the man but slightly watched the others in his peripheral vision,”What do you want?” the wolf asked after a few seconds, getting bored of just standing there having a staring contest with the human. His tone was bland, all emotion masked.
“You’ve got some nerve, talkin’ to me like that,” the ‘leader’ replied in a gruff voice. The wolf scoffed and the other humans started revealing more of their weapons, two having guns. Small handguns but still guns. The timber wolf smirked. One of them thrust their metal pole down on the wolf, aimed for his head.
The wolf swiftly sidestepped the human then jumped back, landing on part of a broken down building protruding from the ground. The group of humans looked up to him, shocked expressions on their faces because of how high he had jumped. The piece of building the wolf had landed on was at least eight feet up from where they were previously standing- not a great height for him. His smirk grew and he revealed his true form and darted off in the opposite direction of the group of humans. He heard shots being fired behind him but none reached him. Now they decide to fire.
After a few minutes of running he made it to the trees, not slowing his pace until he was consumed in them in case he was followed which was less than likely. Humans were too slow to keep up with a wolf unless they had a vehicle or machine of some sort. He finally slowed to a trot and realized those humans had set him off task. He wondered if he’d ever find out if he was imagining the howl he heard or not.
Until he picked up a scent. Blood. But…familiar. Way too familiar, wolf’s blood. It was leading more off to the left of where he was going. So he turned that way and walked, the scent getting stronger with every step. He slowed a bit, passing by some bushes seeing a dark brown wolf a few feet away. He appeared to be unconscious, a bullet wound in its side. The timber wolf took a few more cautious steps towards the dark brown wolf, seeing if he was still alive.
The brown wolf’s eyes snapped open at the movement and he pushed himself off the ground quickly, clamping his jaws shut on the timber wolf’s shoulder before he could react. The brown wolf had the timber pinned, both of them growling furiously.
The timber used one of his hind legs and kicked the brown one in the stomach quickly, causing him to open his mouth freeing the timber. The timber snapped his jaws shut aiming for the brown’s head but he moved in time then jumped back away from the timber, tail raised while he growled viciously, fangs glaring. The timber was on his feet again quickly, growling a little lighter then the brown, trying to ignore the new pain in his shoulder.
“Who are you and why are you here?” The timber questioned.
“Why should I answer to you?” The brown growled in reply,”Who are you and why’re you here?” The timber almost laughed.
“I live here if you want to know so badly. Well, in the city anyways,” he answered. His eyes then zeroed in on the brown wolf’s gunshot wound,”Who shot you?” he asked looking back up to him.
“Why do you care?”
“I don’t. I just don’t want a bullet in my side. So was it a Noble or someone else?” he replied, relaxing his stance some. The brown wolf stopped growling but kept a cautious stance unlike the timber.
“I already killed him so don’t worry about it,” he answered, his eyes scanning over the timber wolf,”Who are you and why are you out here if you live in the city?” he asked again.
“Oh, I was getting some annoying humans off my tail,” he answered,”And I’m Hiro. I heard a howl earlier and I wanted to check it out but those humans got in the way. In the end they led me right to you, in a way,” The brown wolf didn’t reply but studied Hiro.
“I’m Kanzen…” he replied reluctantly. Hiro sat down on his haunches and yawned slightly.
“So…what’re you doing, traveling or something?” he asked, trying to spark up a conversation so they wouldn’t be sitting in complete silence and he didn’t have to go back to the city. There wasn’t anything interesting there anyways.
“Have you ever heard of Paradise?”
“Wolf! There’s a wolf!” One of the soldiers shouted, disbelief clear in his voice. It was crazy! A wolf in the city when they’re supposed to be extinct! But this animal was far too big to be a dog. More soldiers joined him in the chase, firing their weapons with great aim but always managing to miss by mere inches or centimeters.
The ash colored she-wolf dashed through the city skillfully, dodging any people in her way who looked terrified at a big dog-like animal speeding towards them. She felt a sharp somewhat burning pain graze her hind leg but didn’t stop, wincing slightly. After another minute or two of running through the city streets she spotted the broken down gates. She picked up speed and dashed through them, disappearing into the trees and brush.
“Paradise, huh?” Hiro replied,”Sure I’ve heard of it, but does it exist?”
“Of course it exists!” Kanzen replied, and for the first time the two had met his face seemed to light up with excitement but it faded a second later. He let go of his human illusion and his ears perked up,”Do you smell that?”
“Yeah, another wolf…”Hiro replied, looking to where Kanzen’s gaze was,“There are soldiers too…We should get out of here, can you run?”
“Of course I can,” Kanzen replied, sounding a bit agitated. Before the Hiro could reply the ash colored she-wolf burst out of the bushes infront of them, panting heavily.
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