my english coursework story
I stood by the old bay window looking out across the grounds. The long winding drive way seemed to stretch out endlessly below me, a ferocious river of twists and turns. I glanced beyond the old wrought iron gate at the deserted road beyond it, noting the lack of movement and life, not even a bird tearing free of the treetops. I let my gaze travel sideways over the trees on the outskirts of the dense wood surrounding three sides of the house. I wished I was out there right now, running through the woods with the wind in my face, chasing rabbits and playing catchy with Charlie…
But I wasn’t out there- I was in here- in an old fashioned study full of old furniture and thick dark wood covered in dust that stirred my olfactory senses and made my nose itch. The back wall lined with hundreds of books on everything from medicine to anthropology, to how to choose what flowers to grow in your garden. Though, why anyone would need a book on choosing flowers was beyond me. If they were anything like me, they’d buy whatever smelled nice, stick it in the ground, and hope it lasted longer than a week. If it did then it was a successful buy. If not? Better luck next time. That was my theory anyway.
I turned and watched Haydn and Charlie as they sat with their heads together, talking quietly between themselves in voices so low even my sharp hearing couldn’t pick it up as they pawed over a map. I stood for a few minutes just admiring the view in front of me. If it wasn’t for the slight tension in the air, it would be just like many other nights when we all gathered here together.
“Jez? Jez! Are you even listening to me?” I glanced up to see Jack looking at me, an annoyed look gracing his features. “Are you with us?”
I nodded and he continued. “We need to talk about tonight. You remember the plan?”
“I go with Nick to the junk yard, we scout, we sniff around, and we’re back here before midnight. I got it Jack, you’ve been drilling it into us for the past eight and a half hours.” Since the Pack arrived for lunch all we’d heard was the plan for tonight. We sat through three hours of ‘pep talk’ while Jack repeated the plan over and over until we were practically dying of boredom. It was only when Haydn’s head hit the table and he started snoring that we were finally dismissed, only to get holed up in the study, where we could still be found almost five hours later.
“Then you and Nick want to start heading up to get sorted out. You’re leaving soon and I don’t think what you’re wearing is suitable for tonight.”
I looked down. Nope. Not suitable. I’d learnt my lesson on scouting mutts in less than appropriate clothing. Today I was wearing a yellow tank top and knee-length jeans, finished off by a pair of sneakers and an ill-fitting hooded jacket that had belonged to Charlie. I’d had it since I was 11. What I needed tonight was all black. Black shoes, black tracksuit bottoms, long-sleeved black top… black hat too if I wanted to be really professional.
Sighing I turned and looked for Nick. Sometime over the last few minutes he had joined Haydn and Charlie and was leaning on the back of the sofa talking to them. I walked over, plonking myself down in between them, snapping them out of their little world. I laughed at the startled looks on their faces, and Nick joined in too.
“Come on people, time to get this party started.” I tossed Charlie a quick kiss on the cheek and jumped to my feet eager to get out of this room.
“Let’s listen to the pretty lady,” Nick winked at me and straightened up, “We all know what she’s like when she doesn’t get her own way.”
I rolled my eyes.
“They can do as they like,” I said, pointing towards the two men still on the sofa, “You on the other hand, are coming with me.”
I leaned across, grabbed his sleeve and dragged him out of the room behind me, ignoring the teasing wolf whistles from Haydn and the resounding ‘Hey!’ as Charlie pushed him onto the floor. I smiled to myself.
“Meet you in the kitchen in five.” I said to Nick as I disappeared into my room. I was so looking forward to tonight. I was desperate to get out and do something exciting. Since finding the Pack three years ago I’d been hooked on the adrenaline rush that came with Pack life. They were constantly chasing down rogue mutts (none Pack wolves), and the danger and excitement that came with it were truly addicting. I hadn’t been out scouting for almost two weeks, and tonight felt like heaven already.
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After a while the road flattened out and the crunch of stone under the tires replaced the squeak of sand. Light twinkled tantalizingly in the darkness and the scent of barbequing meat touched the air, making my taste buds tingle and my stomach rumble, reminding me it had been a while since I last ate.
We pulled up a side lane that lead to the back of the junk yard. There was a small clearing in the trees up here and that was where we were planning on parking the Explorer Jack had assigned us. The large black beast of a car would be almost invisible in the darkness created by the forest and painted alloys and blacked out windows would help prevent any reflections of light from our flashlights.
We stopped in the clearing behind a stray bush, and hurried round the back to the boot to get out our gear. Attaching guns to our belts and hiding knives down our boot legs, we whispered quietly between ourselves.
“Remember, when we’re in there we need to split. Head left until you can see the house through the heaps. I’ll be opposite. I’ll signal when I’m there.”
“How will I know what the signal is?” I pushed my hair back behind my ear and growled silently at the wind that whipped it back. Nick chuckled.
“You’ll know.” I looked up at him. His pupils were dilated and his mouth hung open slightly, his breathing heavy, evidence of his anticipation and his need for danger. I knew exactly how he was feeling. I felt the same. Tonight wasn’t just about mutt hunting, it was about the thrill of the chase and the rush that comes with hunting prey. We were wolves, and the hunt was an important part of what we were. Without the occasional rush of adrenaline we could easily enter what was know to us as bloodlust. A phase filled with the need to rip and tear and taste the bitter taste of blood. Often, animal blood was not enough. What we truly desired was human flesh, their fear and pain only added to the thrill.
We crept through the trees as quickly as we could, stumbling over the undergrowth. This was wolf territory, and our human bodies just weren’t as capable of clambering around like our wolf forms were.