The moon had fallen behind the horizon when I finally reached the edge of the woods. I burst from the trees and fell onto a disused road, writhing in agony; I couldn’t hold on anymore. My bones clicked and grated together as my body reverted to its original form. The silky chestnut fur covering me drew back and the only hair I had left was the bark-coloured hair on my head. I needed to cut it really; I had hand cut it last winter and the ends were thin and the summer sun was drying them out.
Finally, I lay shaking on the ground, the moon lust deserting me. My naked body was being warmed by the rising sun which awakened my human mind once more. Sitting up, I looked at my surroundings.
I sat in the middle of a thin dirt track that outlined a field. The once green grass had been churned up by infrequent encounters with other pack bordering our territory. As the largest pack in what used to be Aylesbury Vale, only a few times have we been challenged and never have we been overwhelmed. Our territory is the whole of old Aylesbury Vale, most of the Chiltern district and a chunk of the Wycombe district that we won off of a slightly smaller pack to the south. This large area was known as the Vale.
Now more aware, I realized I was still on Vale territory. The wood behind me was where the pack was based and this dirt track led to the town of Wendover. Long since a ghost-town, I had no business there. My last mission in the Vale was slightly north of here. I knew my pack would be after me soon to make sure I had vacated the area; it was no longer my place. But I couldn’t go just yet.
Jumping up, I shifted into my wolf and bounded round the old battlefield and along the empty road.