Sunday, June 6, 2010
The Harvest: Epilogue (A.K.A.Chapter Fifteen, A.K.A. The Conclusion, A.K.A. The End)
The telepathic creatures swam to shore. They were not very adept swimmers, but they managed well enough anyway. As some of them begin to reach the shoreline they were greeted by S’tahgrah’s werewolf brethren. The telepaths tried to invade their minds but the werewolves were too fast and fierce, leaving nothing but puss-covered husks littering the shoreline.
S’tahgrah swam to to shore with Len on his back and the others stayed cautiously behind. They were greeted by close to thirty werewolves, some large, others small, with different colored fur for each. They didn’t know what to make of S’tahgrah and his companions.
“Brothers and Sisters,” S’tahgrah spoke, “these are friends of the breed.”
“They are no friends of ours,” an elder from among them spoke. “And they are not welcomed to stay in our sacred forests. Who are you?”
“S’tahgrah of the Nem-Stro. Let them stay the night. Let them choose to be breed or not. We have been wounded, they are not fit to survive this world without my--without our help.”
“You know half-breeds cannot stay in the sacred forests either, S’tahgrah of the Nem-Stro,” the elder spoke.
“I know, but they will not stay, only pass through. Till I can get them to a safe place. Please, we will not sleep till we are through. We fought together, as breed, they have heart…without their help I would be lost among the black in between the stars.”
“Fine, S’tahgrah, fine. But, if they shall sleep among us… then you shall suffer their fates as well.”
S’tahgrah lowered his head slowly, showing respect to the elder.
“Go now, and move swift. If others stop you tell them you have the blessings of Rekkmah of the Hom-Weh.”
“May the moons always shine for you Rekkmah of the Hom-Weh,” S’tahgrah spoke.
The elder nodded. S’tahgrah signaled for the others to follow. They didn’t hesitate. He led them through the alien woods, which to Len looked much like the North American woodlands he was familiar with, but he was too out of it to tell the difference. Dax was having difficulty breathing the new air. The more he ran, the harder it became to breathe, but he had to push on. Vavoo was unaffected and moved as swift as ever, injuries aside.
They saw other werewolves along the way, some followed from a distance, others paid no mind. The daylight began to fade away and night grew chillier. The air was filled with the howling of the breed. The moons hung over head, one more bright and present then the others, enough to see in the thick of the woods.
Hours passed yet they continued to move through the woods as fast as possible.
“How much longer,” Dax wheezed.
“Not much…when the third moon is brightest.”
“Translation?” Vavoo asked.
“Dig around in my head a bit,” he replied.
“Do you really want me to be looking around in there?” Vavoo asked.
“A few more hours.”
Dax almost passed out after hearing his response, but he had no choice but to trudge on.
Once they reached the land outside of the sacred forests they collectively collapsed. Len was near death, and the others were exhausted.
“Thirsty…hungry,” Dax complained.
“Me too,” Vavoo agreed.
“Need a doctor,” Len managed.
“You need more than a doctor. Maybe we should just eat you,” S’tahgrah suggested.
Len’s eyes grew wide in terror.
“Just kidding,” S’tahgrah said. “But seriously, your leg is infected and your bone is shattered. No one on this planet except me will help you…and there’s only one thing I can do for you.”
“What’s that?” Len asked.
“This might be hard to hear, but I know you just found out for yourself, didn’t you?”
“I did. Do it.”
“Are you sure?”
Len nodded. S’tahgrah leapt at him and bit down into his shoulder and neck. Len screamed louder than he himself thought possible. Vavoo and Dax jumped in surprise but after a brief trip to telepathic land they were all on the same page. S’tahgrah continued to drink, nearly draining Len of blood. Then he stopped, and Len blacked out.
“If he lives…”
“We know.” Vavoo said.
“Now, what about us? Can you lend us a spaceship?” Dax asked.
“This might just be easier to say…no. We do not believe in traveling past our world. We have technology centers, but nothing that can get you home. You may be able to send some sort of transmission to your people, and maybe they can come and get you, but until then, you’re stuck here.”
“Great! I’m stuck on a planet full of werewolves that don’t believe in technology…I can barely breath here!”
“You’ll adjust, or you’ll die, or I can do for you what I did for Len.”
“Oh, you can bite the shit out of me and turn me into a werewolf? Yeah, that sounds great,” Dax exclaimed and then weezed.
“It may be the only thing that can keep you alive. My world is not kind.”
“Can I think about it?”
“Sure, but come tomorrow I’ll being making my journey home.”
“Then what?” Vavoo asked.
“Then we part ways.”
“Just like that?”
“Just like that.”
Thanks for reading The Harvest. I hope you enjoyed this weekly adventure as much as I enjoyed writing it. If you did, please consider telling others about it. I have plans for another serial, but I have to keep quiet on that for awhile...it may be a co-writing experiment with two other writers, and that’s all I’ll say. If that falls through, I’ll think of something…