Monday, January 11, 2016

Hunted – 24

Brice looked at Logan as if he’d gone totally around the bend. “Did you say we?”

“We. Me, my family, your family, you, anyone who’s a shifter.”

With a snort of laughter Brice said, “You’re right, I do think you’ve escaped from the mad house, or worse.”

“Guess I’ll have to prove to you I haven’t.” Logan took a deep breath.

“Fuck no! This is insane! I’m…what the hell did you do? Hypnotize me or something?” Brice shouted as he sprang to his feet and backed away.

The wolf stood his ground in front of Brice, his tail relaxed and moving slowly, his eyes locked on Brice, his posture non-threatening. He was gray and reddish-brown with a black-tipped tail, and stood about three feet tall at the shoulder.

“I didn’t hypnotize you,” Logan said seconds later when he regained his human form. “I’m one of the dual-natured, a shifter; we both are.”

Brice couldn’t take his eyes off Logan, although at this point it had nothing to do with what he was saying or the form he had taken only moments ago. Logan saw the look of lust on Brice’s face and with a though clothed himself.

“Damn,” Brice whispered regretfully before he took in what Logan had just told him. “You think I’m a…a shifter? You’re crazy.”

Logan chuckled. “So you keep saying, but I’m not. For some reason, and I can’t even begin to guess why, you have sublimated your true nature—denied the wolf half of yourself.”

“Yeah, right,” Brice replied almost contemptuously. “I don’t know how you pulled off that trick, but I’m not for one minute believing that was for real. It’s no humanly possible for a man to turn into a wolf.”

With a smile Logan said, “You’re right, it isn’t humanly possible. But I’m not human, I’m a shifter. Brice, think about it. I didn’t know we were coming out to this particular place until an hour ago. How could I have set up some elaborate ruse and more to the point, why would I?”  

“I…” Brice began to walk around the clearing. He searched the ground and the surrounding trees for anything that would prove this was an elaborate hoax—although he couldn’t think of any reason why Logan would try to pull such a thing on him. Finally he sank back down on the log to look up at Logan. “I don’t understand,” he said in confusion.

Logan sat down beside him. “My best guess is that something happened to you that made you force what you are deep down into the back of your mind.”

“How did you…I mean if I really am…which I’m can’t believe, how did you know?”

“Your scent to start with. You can’t disguise that or wish it away, because it’s part of what you are. Any shifter could pick up on it if you’re not old enough to know how to hide it, which you aren’t.”

“Guess there aren’t any in the city then. Well until now.”

“Very few. Cities aren’t our thing, for obvious reasons. We like to run, to hunt, to be free.”

Brice looked quizzically at Logan. “Then why are you here?”

“I was traveling and ran out of money?” Logan’s words held a note of deep sorrow, despite the slightly joking smile on his lips.

“There’s more to it than that. Are you on the run from…I don’t know, your pack, if that’s what shifters call it? That’s what happened in one of the shows, a… Never mind that’s hardly real, or germane to what we’re talking about.”

“Pack is correct, and no I’m not running from it, because I don’t have a pack any more.” Logan stared down at the ground for a long moment before he turned his gaze to Brice. “But maybe you are on the run. It could explain a lot.”

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