My breath began to get short as I realized just how deadly this little encounter could be if Isaac and I didn't find a way out of this place and fast. John Boy has always been one of the cooler heads among the group, always calm, always quiet. But, considering the fact that I've never really seen what he was capable of when it came to ripping a traitor to pieces under Father's orders...I don't know if that made him less dangerous...or more so.
"Isaac, I need you to listen to me, ok. Find your way around the kitchen, and try to get your hands on those keys to the truck. Ok?"
"But, Wesley...I already told you...I can't see anything at all."
"I know you can't, and neither can I. But John Boy is going to use that to his advantage, and it's going to be 'game over' before it even begins. I'm really gonna need you to concentrate right now."
"Perhaps we can find a place in the cabin to hide?" He said, his voice trembling.
"There's NO hiding from John Boy, you get it? It won't work. His senses are way too strong. He can hear and smell everything around him. A million times better than I can. He may be blind, but he can 'see' just fine. Trust me on this."
"What if we go out the back door? We could run."
"No...we can't." I assured him. "We could barely outrun the rest of them in a TRUCK at top speed! We've got absolutely NO chance at all if we go out there and try to make it on foot. None." I know that Isaac was wandering around blind, and now that the fear was taking over he wasn't thinking straight...but we didn't have time to waste looking for any other options. I turned him in the direction of the kitchen counters and I gave him a gentle push to get him moving. "Go. I need you to find those keys. If you can't find the keys, try to see if you can feel around for a flashlight or a box of matches or something bigger, and use that to find the keys. Either way, we've only got a minute or two before the pack gets here."
"What are you going to do?" He whimpered.
"I don't know yet. I'm thinking." I said, attempting to get my werewolf eyes to adjust as much to the darkness as inhumanly possible. "Just get those damn keys!"
I thought about trying to use something to block the windows or barricade the doors, but who was I kidding? They could rip right through that in a matter of minutes. Especially if they brought Kriegar with them. He was so gargantuan in his wolf form that he could probably rip the whole wall down if he wanted to. And that's assuming that John Boy even needed his help once he slid in, undetected, and began feasting on our insides.
Shit! Shit shit shit! Think, Wesley...THINK!!! They're getting closer. I can feel them.
"How are we doing on those keys, Isaac???" I called out to the kitchen.
"Nothing yet. I'm still looking. I'm by the sink now." He called back.
That's not good. Not good at all.
Wait! Sink! The sink! My heart jumped a bit, and I felt along the wall to see if I could get back into the bathroom where I found the hydrogen peroxide earlier. Under the sink.
I reached underneath to the lower cabinets, my hands shaking violently as my adrenaline began to race through me to the point of nearly making me dizzy. I felt around and found the sponges, felt some pipes and the trap drain...where is it? Ahhh, there it is! I grabbed the half gallon bottle of ammonia and held it close to my chest as I backed out of the bathroom. I twisted the cap off, and the scent of it instantly began to make my eyes water in an attempt to wash the sting of its potent odor out of them. I coughed and sputtered a bit, my heightened senses taking in the impact of the ammonia in a major way. Jesus, that stuff was strong! My eyes began to glow a bright gold as I tried to hold my breath to keep from choking.
It was almost too much for me to handle, but that's exactly what I was expecting. If John Boy has even half the reaction to this stuff that a new breed like me is having right now...it's going to drive his senses completely crazy. It won't do much to stop him, overall...but it might just throw him off and slow him down long enough for me to think of the next step.
"I think I found the keys!!!" Isaac shouted. "I can feel them!"
"SWEET! Hold on to them! I'm coming to where you are!" I said. I also reached back down and felt for the bottle of shampoo that was in the cabinet as well. Just in case. I bumped my shoulder a few times and nearly tripped over the edge of the couch, trying to hurry towards the back door. Isaac was so nervous that the stench of fear on him was almost as powerful as the ammonia itself. But I didn't want him to get lost in a fit of hysteria, so I tried my best not to rattle him. "Are you sure those are the right keys?"
"Pretty sure. Yes." He said, still shaking. "Let's go!"
But I swiftly reached out to put a hand on his shoulder and press his back up against the wall! "No!!! Wait!!!"
"Wait? Wait for what?"
My union with the others was reaching its peak. And I knew we'd never make it to the truck in time. "We're too late. They're already here..."
At that very moment, I heard Cyrus' taunting voice coming from outside. "Little pig, little pig...let me in!" I could almost hear the smile in his tone. I felt a shiver run through me...hearing Father's voice again. Mostly because of the threat he posed to the both of us, but beyond that was a part of me that was almost instantly lured right back into a hypnotic state of total obedience. My leader. My brother. My friend. Even now...my heart ached for the comfort of belonging to him again. "You do realize the pointlessness of trying to run from us, don't you? Attempting to hide? This is silly."
Isaac's fear was rising quickly, and he was practically vibrating with terror. I reached up to cover his mouth. Cyrus knew where we were, but I didn't want to talk to him. He has a way of getting into your head if you engage him.
"I've got to hand it to you, Wesley...you've got a lot more fight in you than I ever could have expected. A proud alpha you would have made if you didn't have that pesky 'conscience' of yours holding you back." Cyrus grinned. "What was your plan, pup? You can't go back to your family. There's no safe haven where we can't find you. I'm a part of you now. You're a part of all of us. There's nothing waiting out there for you but more pain. More rejection. More secrets. It's way too late to go back to sheep's clothing now, little one."
I still couldn't see much of anything, but I kept my ears open, just in case anything felt out of the ordinary. I could sense them with my calling, but was afraid to draw too much energy from it for fear that it would take me over again.
There's got to be another way out of here.
"I'll tell you what, Wesley...why don't you just come to the front door and face me? Open up, save us some trouble...and I might just consider letting you come home with us." He said. "Not without punishment, of course." I began to look all around us for an escape route. There was a window in the bathroom, maybe if they came in through the front door we could hold them off long enough to scramble out of it before they broke the door down. It was risky, but I was asleep for most of the time that I was in this cabin. I don't know the layout well enough to remember anything else.
I tapped on Isaac's shoulder, trying to signal him to head for the bathroom, but he couldn't see anything. I was just going to have to take him by the hand and pull him with me without making any noise. Not that I'd ever be quiet enough for them to not detect me. They're much better at this hunting thing than I am.
I took a hold of his wrist and led him to the doorway of the kitchen, and I tapped him again to warn him to stay still. Then, opened the shampoo bottle and began to squirt the thick slippery liquid all over the kitchen tile. I must have emptied out two thirds of the bottle before Cyrus called out again from the shadows.
"Hey, Isaac...you still hanging in there, kiddo?" He said, causing a few of the others to snicker out loud. I could feel his body increasing, his breath getting short as the fearful scent nearly overpowered me. "I know you may think that you're 'safe' in that cabin with our brother, but trust me...you aren't. In fact, you're in more trouble than you know."
Isaac's chest began to heave as his eyes teared up. "Shhhh...don't listen." I whispered.
"I'm guessing that Wesley didn't tell you about our union, did he? Didn't explain how it works?" Cyrus grinned. "You see...even you boys could somehow find a way to get far enough away from us...the calling would tear him apart. Without the union of his brethren, without balancing out our energies as one, Wesley will go completely WILD within a matter of weeks. It will start off with small outbursts, some rather nasty nightmares, maybe a few hyper aggressive sexual exploits...but it will only get worse from there. Believe me." I could feel Isaac slowly beginning to pull his hand away from my grip, but I tightened up immediately to keep him still. DON'T listen to him! He's trying to make it easy for the others to tear us to shreds. "You've seen the werewolf movies, haven't you, Isaac? It's not just cinema, kid! A few weeks from now, Wesley's going to wake up in the middle of the woods somewhere, his clothes torn and tattered...covered in your blood...with pieces of your raw flesh still stuck in his teeth. And he's not even going to remember doing it." Cyrus said. "A wolf can't survive for very long without its pack. We're sort of built that way."
I could feel them moving closer now, and I didn't have much time left. I popped the cap on the bottle of ammonia and lifted my shirt up over my nose and lips, holding my breath in an attempt to keep from choking on the smell. I poured it all over the kitchen floor, splashing it over the shampoo mess and spreading it around as much as I could.
"We're getting impatient out here, Wesley. You're cutting into our drinking time. Don't make us have to blow your house down, little pig!" Cyrus' smile was fading. I could almost feel the heat of his growing anger over my disobedience. It was like my blood was being injected with a poison, with Cyrus trying to control me from his remote location. And then, I began to feel the scratch marks he left on my back the night that I was embraced suddenly flare up. The burn wasn't as intense as it was the first few times he ran his fingers over it, but it was still enough to make me wince in pain. I did my best to guide Isaac to the bathroom, taking a few extra seconds to sprinkle what was left in the ammonia bottle all over the carpet. By the windows, and the doors, and some over the couches and chairs. I couldn't hold my breath for much longer, and my heightened senses caused me to cough and choke the moment I was forced to inhale again. GOD, that stuff was strong!
I needed to get us the fuck OUT of this cabin and into that truck. However, if it doesn't start, or if it's low or out of gas...then we're fucked! I had NO idea what to do at that moment, but I kept searching my brain for some kind of solution. Or, at least a delay tactic. I even thought about maybe going out on the front porch to see if I could make some sort of a bargain with Father to let us go...but my calling was already telling me that we were beyond that point now. The pack would ravage us both the second they laid eyes on us. I was almost certain of it.
"Wesley...?" Isaac whispered.
"SHHHH!!!" I replied, almost in a scolding tone. "Give me a second to think." I didn't want to sink too deep into my unipn with my brethren, but I was attempting to scrape the surface. Just enough for me to maybe guess where they were all positioned in terms of keeping us trapped in here. Cyrus wasn't about to leave us with an easy escape route.
I closed my eyes and tried to get my inner senses to reach out and bond with the rest of my pack again. It was difficult to find a balance between being in touch with the calling, and being swept up in it all over again. Like trying to hold a floating basketball underwater. It kept struggling to invite me in, and yet kept struggling to keep me out, simultaneously. I could 'feel' them...but I couldn't tell where they were. Not without...maybe sinking in a little deeper...
At that moment, Cyrus gave up on trying to intimidate us into exposing ourselves. And I could sense the 'order' as it was given to the rest of his pack. Faintly hearing his voice say, "Enough of this. Boys? Go fetch me my meat. Bring it back to me one bite-sized piece at a time if you have to." Adding, "Make it hurt."
No need for us to be quiet anymore. They're coming! "Isaac, get in the bathroom! We're going to try to climb out of the window and see if we can make it to the truck!"
"I thought you said we would never make it in time!"
"Well, we don't have much of a choice other than to try!" I said, pushing him forward. I know that it was still too dark for him to see anything, but he was just going to have to feel his way towards the window and get it open. Because, I suddenly felt John Boy's presence just seconds before hearing the back door BURST open in the kitchen, and he dashed inside in full wolf form! He shattered it to splinters like it was nothing! And I know that he must have smelled the ammonia from a mile away, but while it may have kept him from locking onto my scent and pinpointing my location in the cabin immediately, he was able to somehow separate his sense of smell in an unnatural way that would keep him from choking and sputtering the way that I was, and yet could still find his way around in the dark. How the hell does he DO stuff like that???
My only saving grace was the shampoo on the floor. I think the ammonia was masking the scent of the shampoo enough where John Boy's claws began to slip and slide all over the tile, causing him to fall over and knock down some dishes, pots, and pans, as he fought to keep his footing. It bought us some time, but it would only be a few seconds. What the fuck was Isaac DOING in there?
"Did you get it open???" I shouted, hearing John Boy's razor sharp claws scraping along the kitchen floor and getting closer as he growled with determination.
"The window...I think it's painted shut!!!" Isaac was struggling to open it, but it wouldn't work. He could easily find something to smash it with, but the window was already pretty small, and the jagged shards of glass would cut us wide open if we tried to climb out of it that way. Once we started bleeding, the pack would be able to track us even easier than they were before.
My adrenaline was pumping so hard that it felt like my heart was about to explode. So I attempted to use the fear and the anger to 'transform'. I was trying to concentrate, but I still wasn't quite sure how this whole wolf thing worked. It always just sort of...happened before. I wasn't really in control of it, was I? There's got to be a way to trigger it. If THEY can do it, then so can I! At least that's what I'm hoping! Because as I heard John Boy getting back on his feet after slipping and scratching his way through that kitchen, I knew for a fact...
That I was going to have to FIGHT my way out of here!
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