In the outer area of the wildlands, a young wolf cub was seen trekking through the forest. It original fur color was a light grey almost white but it fur was matted together; covered by grime, blood and soil. It hasn’t cleaned itself in weeks touring from one side of the forest to the other. It barely was able to survive and make it out from the middle of the wildlands. From its snout to its cheekbones had a define sharpness to them like the edge of a knife. It eyes had a hint of desperation but were full of determination. They possess a hint of intelligence that many creatures didn’t have. This was most likely a magical beast.
It continues to trek through the woods seemingly looking for something. It was a cub but it seemed extremely small for it size. Upon closer inspection, some of the blood on it was actually its own. Its ribs was visible from a distant, looking like it lacked meals for a while. It had an injury over it belly that wasn’t shallow but wasn’t too deep that was slowly closing up. It had an injury covering it hind legs from a man-eating trees from the journey.
It was 31/2 feet from the nose to it tails but it was extremely small at its age. The injured cub weighed about 25 lbs. with it feet pressing into the soil leaving almost no depth. It continued to follow a clear path to a certain destination. Fearful of the vegetation in these woods it carefully continued it journey. The trees were carnivorous; the flowers released pollen that put creatures to sleep or even poisoned them while the mushrooms released spores that used the body of beasts as host to feed off of. It wanted to not only survive but roam free.
An hour later, it arrived outside of a cave. The cave had a wide mouth that expanded horizontally for a few meters. The top had a rugged rocky surface that gave the appearance of sharp teeth. The cave was pitched black looking from the front, making it impossible to see from the inside. The wolf started to howl every couple of seconds but it continued to sit outside the cave. After a few moments, howls descended from the cave before you heard the sounds of steps coming forth.
What assembled was a pack of wolves. It was a group of 11 and the head wolf lead out front was the biggest and most feral. It fur was clean and sharp. It had a size of over 8 feet from head to tail. It fur was a dark ash grey and it release an intimidating aura. It eyes contain a bit of disgust at such a feeble and dirty looking wolf. Surprisingly this wolf could speak.
“Why have you intruded on my domain little one?” He roared.
The small grayish wolf began to howl. This was the fourth wolf pack it went to visit in the last month. The wolves in the middle layer of the woods where much stronger and vicious. They threaten to kill it if it stayed in their territory. They felt such a weak wolf was useless and brought no benefits to their pack. They didn’t deem it a threat so the wolves allowed it to leave. The last tribe it visited injured it. They were much more primal. They pack territory was on the border between the middle and outer layer of these wildlands. Their leader couldn’t even speak, completely following it feral instincts.
It wasn’t even allowed to hunt in the territory of some of the beast which took that as a sign of aggression. This caused it to wander throughout the woods, drinking from the rivers to fill up it stomach and scavenging already dead carcasses. It finally was able to find the scent of this wolf pact in the outer layer. Hopefully it nomad adventures would end here.
They were not as strong as the creatures in the middle layer neither seemed as intelligent but it only longed for a pack and family to safely hunt with. This wolf could speak the world native tongue. He didn’t know what that meant but his mom said that meant that it was a magical beast and could be reasoned with. This was a good sign. The other wolf pack he visited with wolves that could speak was a lot stronger. The aura they gave off was much more intimidating and he felt weak and useless compared to them. He felt he would be able to contribute a great amount to this wolf pack if given a chance. He began to tell it his story. Sometimes he howled but other times he would whimper. This went on for 10 minutes before the leader of the group spoke up.
“Enough. You been going around searching for a wolf family to hunt with but none took you in? Why would someone take in a stray? We should accept you just because your mom died a month ago and you been out hunting by yourself? You heard stories about wolf packs since birth and came looking for some. I think I remember her. She denied coming into our pack when I told her she can join if she left you. You resemble her a bit.” He said a bit disgusted.
The young wolf cub started to growl threatening at the alpha wolf as he continued speaking.
“You actually have some spirit. At least she didn’t die for a completely useless son. She probably went off to the middle layer hunt for food even though it’s very dangerous. I would be a fool to accept another wolf son as my own. She was strong, which meant your father was most likely an alpha also. This also means you should be strong yourself. I will give you a chance. Beat the youngling from the pack and you can join. We watch each other’s back but no one eat for free.”
The injured cub was completely incest but it knew it couldn’t beat the leader. It felt that the way it spoke about its mother was disrespectful. It began to turn around and walk away. This wasn’t the pack for it. Even though it would have a hard time surviving without a pack, it still would rather roam on its own then be under such a tyrant. The alpha wolf howl from behind him and the other wolves began to surround him.
“I didn’t say you could leave. You WILL fight the other younglings and be practice. If you do poorly, you will die for being useless. If you do well, you might survive. The weak do not get to choose where or how they die. The strong will always have control over the weak.” The wolf growled looking down on it.
A few smaller wolves walked out from the cave. They were young, robust and full of energy.
“They should be around your age of 3 months and will be going on their first hunt soon. You already been hunting for a bit and should have some experience. Fight for your life or die.” He roared.
The young injured cub looked up at the three with feral eyes. It body was completely in filth and stuck together which gave it a more savage look. It howled at the wolves threatening. It didn’t have a choice in the fight. The injured wolf began to pace itself around the forest trying to keep all the wolves in eyesight at once. The three younglings continued to walk forward and circle around him. He was of the same age but a size smaller. Even though he looked savage, he appeared to be on his last legs.
The alpha wolf seemed especially attentive of one of the youngling. Two of them were male while the last was female. The alpha wolf showed some anticipation towards the biggest of the three. It looked fully grown compared to the other two with a dry ash gray color fur and almost two sizes bigger than the injured cub. The other wolf looked domineering and fur was the color of sooth. It wanted to compete with the biggest youngling while the last was a female wolf. It was affectionate with biggest wolf. Their coordination was best while circling the injured wolf cub. They obviously spent a good amount of time together. The injured cub began to move throughout the forest while the whole wolf pack followed from a distance behind to watch. The three younglings circled the injured wolf from both sides.
They would continue to travel throughout the woods and other creatures would go into hiding. Even the stronger beast didn’t think taking on a whole wolf pack was worth it. This showed the strength of the wolf pack and the other creatures’ acknowledgement of their claim over the territory. One of the youngling became impatient and went to attack the injured cub on their own, clearly aiming for its neck. The alpha wolf did not look pleased.
The injured cub saw the domineering youngling attacked it head on. It saw the wolf go in for a direct attack trying to kill it at once. It was tired and injured. It quickly decided it couldn’t escape so it moved slightly to the side and let the bite hit it shoulder, tackling it to the ground which left it neck open. The injured wolf bit down with all it might aiming at the wolf cub neck.
When the teeth made contact, the taste of fur, meat and blood entered it mouth. It was already in a ravenous and feral state which made it even more savage. The injure wolf use all the strength it could muster to clench tighter while turning it neck. It ended up pulling off a chunk of meat and flesh from the wolf cub. The injure wolf proceeded to stand up quickly but was shaking. It body hobbled but the wolf that neck was bitten stayed down. The alpha wolf looked down at the wolf with some anger but didn’t intervene. These wolves would have to start hunting soon and if they died to an injured beast that clearly was starving, they wouldn’t last long outside the cave anyway. They would be a waste of resources.
The injured wolf cub now had an injury on its belly and one on it shoulder but it finally got its first taste of food in a while. It felt a burst of energy and hunger. To finally get a meal after a while but not be able to dine made it feel more incense. It body was damage but felt lighter. It injury on its belly and shoulder began to hurt less. It did not notice but it had a glow around it. It wounds was beginning to heal at a visible rate, albeit slowly. It began to focus on the two wolves circling it now.
They did not show anger at him killing the other wolf, just wariness. The two wolves were always on the exact opposite of each other while they circled him. He continued to move throughout the forest trying to get both of them in his sights but he couldn’t. The alpha and the pack were content with watching from the back. His eyes showed approval. A wolf was vicious and would aim to kill but more importantly they were patient. Wolves should be willing to slowly whittle their prey down allowing for a higher chance at a success. This also helps to minimize risk of injuries of it fellow pack members.
Finally both wolves attacked the injured cub at once. They did not aim for the throat but it sides successfully causing a scratch on it hide before they both backed off. They then continue to circle it while it ran through the forest trying to keep both of them in front of it eyes. It ran under huge tree roots, jumped across snaking rives and along steep hills to no avail.
Once the injured cub seemed a little winded and exhausted, they would attack it again and run away before it retaliated. This continued to happened but the injured cub body was slowly recovering for half an hour before it recovery stopped. It body exhaustion was starting to kick in. When it tried to stave off the attack of both wolves, it would hurt neither but receive shallow claw marks itself. This caused it to slowly begin to bleed out. It began to become thirsty for blood.
When the injured cub finally stop running through the trees and took a small breather, the youngling attacked him again. Instead of trying to stave of both of their advances, he waited to the last moment and allowed his left side open, allowing a huge injury on its left side. This allowed it to lunge at the female wolf on it right; successfully knocking her on her back. It brought it claws and left a huge tear across her stomach. It then proceeded to bite down to finish it off before the other wolf responded, knocking the injured cub away.
The biggest youngling looked down at the wolf and it insides was coming out. It once clean fur was a bloody mess. The female wolf body would not listen to it. It couldn’t get up and she knew she wouldn’t survive. Both of the wolves knew. She gave a whimper and the remaining wolf howled in the air before it stared viciously at the injured cub. The alpha wolf looked down in disappointment. It should of went all in for the kill and checked on the female wolf later. That was the biggest opening yet but it wasn’t over. It was definitely on its last legs now. It had a huge gash on its side and various cut marks throughout it body. It was certainly shocking that it had an ability it could use this young to recover but it was only self-preservation, nothing threatening. This whole hunt been a huge disappointment in it eyes. Hopefully his son could bring back the kill.
The injured wolf hobbled up at its on paced. It saw the condition of the wolf and knew she wouldn’t make it. It only wished that it had some blood to satisfy this burning thirst in it throat. It always felt more energize when it completed a successful hunt and had a bite. It attempts was thwarted this time. His body felt like it was carrying around boulders. It felt the heat coming off each of it cuts. It legs was starting to go numb. It eyesight would lose focus but it felt the anger coming from the beast ahead.
It looked at the alpha in the back and saw some semblance of warmth in its very cold eyes. It knew that this one was it son. It pride and feral nature ignited once more. Even if it died, it would take the son of that prideful wolf with it. The injured cub finally found the strength to begin to pace around the wolf. It was the one to circle the youngling at a brisk pace. To slow to be seen as a jog but was faster than a walk. This was it prey. The injured cub lunged in.
The alpha’s cub jumped to the side and then went for it slightly injured side. The injured cub couldn’t dodge in time and decided to go for his neck. It missed but was able to trade blow for blow. Not only did it left side have a gash across it; the right side had a huge cut from earlier. The huge wolfing lost it cool a while ago and was content at trading blow for blow. It anger cause it to want to cut the injured into many pieces. The alpha didn’t look happy with it methods but was pleased with it ruthlessness. It would find another mate but it need to learn how to hunt first.
They continued to trade blows before they reached the top of a hill. The injured wolf was running on fumes at this point. It was a steep hill behind it with whiff of poison that reached uphill. The creature that lived at the lake also released a powerful aura. It would rather deal with the whole pack than to trespass on such a monster. The said wolf pack was in front. It knew it was cornered and it had no escape route. It was about to make it last stand when it notice an interesting tree. It noticed it being the same type of man-eating tree that injured it before. It began to pace around to the side until it was in front but slightly out of range of the man-eating tree. It eyed the alpha wolf’s cub with defiance its eyes with it head held high, portraying that it looked down on it. The alpha son was already seeing blood and lunged for it.
The injured cub jumped to the side rolling on the ground. Turning around, it saw the alpha’s son already in position to attack again while it was still gathering itself. Before the alpha son could lunge again, roots came from the ground and grabbed it new meal by the legs. Eyes appeared on the face of the tree as if it was awakening from it slumber. The alpha wolf cub finally showed some trace of fear. The injured cub saw that this was his chance and lunged for its throat.
The injured cub was in mid-jump before a claw appeared from thin air hitting it side causing it to crash to the side before it fell down the steep hill. It life being intact was not guaranteed. It was the alpha wolf who appeared to save his disappointing son. It hit the scheming little cub a bit too hard causing it to fall downhill. It gave up on the chase because there was a noxious poison that it could smell coming from around the lake downhill and an aura of power that it didn’t want to offend. The injured wolf cub was either dead or soon to die. Either the poison would kill it or whatever powerful creature that lived in that area would for trespassing. No peaceful creature would live in that type of poison. It would rather focus on saving his son from this carnivorous tree.
The injured wolf rolled down hill and hit a few rocks on its way down. It had broken ribs, a few bruises and all the injuries from the earlier fight. It knew it probably wasn’t going to survive. It began to limp towards the lake. The injured wolf decided that if it would die, it would die by a powerful creature after it at least quenched it thirst. It continued to move at almost a crawl before it finally arrived at the land slightly before the lake. There were burn marks everywhere and a few earthen spikes that impaled a few weird creatures. The impaled bodies of these creatures even had the smell of poison on them. The injured cub started having second thoughts. To die in such a way seem horrifying but a quick death wasn’t a bad thing. It slowly hobbles to the lake before drinking out of it. The water seemed to be special before his body felt heavy and his eyes closed. It fell asleep in front of the lake fully expecting to never wake up again but was content with being able to quench it thirst.
Inside of the lake appeared to be a woman. She appeared to be transparent as she looked up through the lake. She didn’t have a solid body and was made of water. Her form was of a water nymph but this was Autumn the formation master.
“No creature appeared over the lake since I woke up a month ago and I’m running out of time. “She thought. She didn’t know how long she slept but was concerned about what was happening back in the city and the consequences of her disappearance.
“I went and bind my soul to that magic crystal allowing me to live for a bit longer but the crystal itself was damaged. The damage crystal caused the mana to leak out and dissolved throughout the lake. Once the magic crystal completely disappears, I will soon follow it. I won’t be long for this world for more than a few more days but I cannot leave this lake.” She said.
She began to look at this wolf with hope in her eyes.
“This wolf is young and has some intelligence but near death. I can heal it but I need it to make a pact and be my host. How should I convince it to sign a soul contract to help me rebuild my body and adventure to the land of humans” she began to scheme then her eyes lit up.
“Lady Fauna still hasn’t given up on me.” She smiled