For this Saturday, more Werewolf stories. Once again, I did some fiction work to prepare my players for more sessions. I was surprised how much they enjoyed them, so I went all the way to 4 (with a 5th one that I haven’t finished yet). Here you go.
Out in the middle of the woods, a clean red corvette pulled along a dirt trail and stopped outside an old cabin. The engine died, and Lieutenant Spatz stepped out of the car, grabbed a tote bag full of groceries, and sniffed at the air.
He looked around, put on a pair of shades, and then walked over to the cabin door. He opened it.
“Knock next time,” Levi said from the couch. He was typing away at a laptop, and didn’t look at Spatz as he entered.
The cabin wasn’t much more than that couch, a coffee table, a small kitchen made up of a sink and toaster oven, and stairs that lead up to a bed.
Spatz sniffed, and twitched his nose, “Has someone else been up here?”
Levi put down the laptop and pulled the bag over to him, “Don’t sniff my house. That’s weird.”
“Force of habit.”
He pulled out a loaf of bread and a pack of cookies, “And what if there was? Are you jealous or something?”
“You got the wrong crackers,” Levi said, “But otherwise, this is pretty good. Thanks.”
Why Spatz was still doing this for him was something Levi was still trying to figure out. It was hard enough getting everything else in his life in order. At least this one thing wasn’t a problem. He didn’t have to show his face in town, which lead to the best benefit of all.
“Are you still okay out here?” Spatz asked, looking around the apartment.
Levi shrugged, popped open the box of crackers and stuffed one in his mouth, “I’m fine.”
“Your friends were asking about you.”
He stopped chewing. “Which ones?”
“Mike and Cam,” Spatz said, “I saw them in Chicago.”
So they finally settled on working with Meredith? Well, Mike was already leaning that way, but Cam needed somebody to work for. That made sense.
“They’re big boys, they can take care of themselves.”
“Meredith is keeping them safe,” Spatz said.
“Right,” Spatz added, “I forgot. She who will not be named.”
“Are you hungry or something?” Levi said, jumping up from the couch. He leaned forward for a second and hissed as pain shot through his arm. When he looked up, Spatz was watching him.
“A sandwich?” Spatz said.
Spatz liked to pretend he wasn’t observant. Levi couldn’t decide if he liked that trait, or hated it. Maybe that was part of being Meredith’s lapdog, no telling the alpha-bitch what you noticed until it was the right time.
Levi took the bread into the kitchen, and started making something.
“You two are a lot alike, you know that?” Spatz said as he sat on the couch.
There was a chime on Levi’s laptop, and he ran back into the room. He picked it up over the edge of the couch, put it on the armrest, and looked at the message with a stern face.
“You can’t possibly have internet out here.” Spatz said as he watched Levi type away.
“Its called tethering, grandpa. You can look it up on your apple back home.”
Spatz looked a little hurt, and whispered, “Grandpa?”
It was a message. Not exactly what he wanted to hear. It was another strange happening in Chicago, another shifter dropped out. Thankfully it wasn’t one he knew well, he was getting tired of losing friends. Instead this was just more proof of a bigger picture.
There was a thump at the window. Spatz looked, but Levi didn’t bother.
“Something wrong?” Spatz asked.
He shook his head, “It’s nothing. Uni homework. Has anything strange been going on in the city?”
Spatz shrugged, “Maybe.”
Levi narrowed his eyes on Spatz, “Why don’t you just tell me.”
Spatz took off his shades and folded them up.
“Is this because of Meredith?” Levi asked, “Are you keeping stuff from me now?”
“You’re dead as far as she knows,” Spatz shrugged.
Levi closed his laptop, “So what?”
Spatz sat back and sighed.
He wanted to know about the smell. No wonder that woman kept Spatz around. He was completely loyal, to a fault. He was like a worried puppy, doing whatever it took to figure out why his master was sad. Levi was sure that Meredith’s biggest mistake was ordering Spatz to watch out for his pack.
“I’m going to have to move,” Levi said, “Something happened. It shouldn’t happen again.”
When it happened, Levi was pretty sure he was going to die. He was hyperventilating in the middle of the forest, trying to overhear the man in a trenchcoat walking up the trail to his cabin.
The man was on his phone, talking to someone, he never used a real name.
“I’m pretty sure this is the place. Don’t know why it would be hiding in a cabin, but we can figure that out after.”
Levi had eyes in the woods. When someone decided to take a stroll toward him, he could make himself scarce. The problem was, his crows never saw Mr. Trenchcoat enter the forest. There was no car, or bicycle. He came out of nowhere. He looked too human to be spirit stuff, but Levi knew from experience that you never knew what was strange about someone until they let you know.
“No, I don’t think it’ll be a problem. See if you can find a cage.”
He hung up his phone, and then walked into Levi’s cabin.
Waiting for him to come out was torture. When the man left again he had a frown on his face, and looked back and forth.
Then Levi let out a loud caw, and dropped on his head. Whoever this idiot was, he didn’t expect a giant bird-man. Levi laid into him with his claws, doing whatever damage he could before the man could recover.
The guy rolled out from under him, pulled out a strange crooked knife, and slashed back. The blade stuck into Levi’s wing, and he let out a loud cry before swatting trenchcoat man to the ground.
Levi pinned him on his face, and then shifted back to human. He was panting, trying to seem confident when he could count his physical fights on one hand.
“What’re you doing in my house?” Levi asked as he squeezed the guy’s wrist until he dropped the knife.
The guy hid his pain behind a chuckle, “I tracked that strange magic of yours.”
“Tracked it?” Levi said, “How?”
“I could explain it, but that wouldn’t help you understand,” He said with a smile.
Levi put his knee into the guy’s neck, “I’ll give it a shot, I’m pretty clever.”
“Okay, okay,” He said, “Magic leaves a residue. If you can see it, it is pretty easy to recognize unique signatures. Your magic is… primitive, freaky. I wanted to know why.”
“Maybe call next time?” Levi said.
The guy lifted an eyebrow, “You attacked me.”
“Yeah, well shut up.”
“Look,” The man said, trying to adjust his shoulder to be in a comfortable position, “How about we work together? We can figure out what is up with your magic together, do some lab experiments, I can show you a secret or two while we’re at it.”
Levi looked at him, and thought about it. The word cages was still ringing around in his head. He knew even then that Spatz was going to be mad at him for this.
“How about no?” Levi said before punching the guy in the back of the head.
Levi could still feel the knife wound, and he still had the knife. It was healing up fine, but he knew he was going to have to cut down on the curses.
“That’s not much,” Spatz said.
Levi looked at his laptop, “When I figure it out, I’ll let you know.”
Spatz nodded, and mulled it over from his seat. “We haven’t figured ours out either. The pure, the other werewolves, are acting strange. They have switched up their tactics. A lot less killing, a lot more recruiting.”
“Coyote?” Levi asked.
Spatz shook his head, “The Bohles don’t seem to be involved.”
Levi sighed, “Spirit stuff.”
“Typically, yeah,” Spatz said, “But while you may not like spirit stuff, that is our life. We’re spirit stuff.”
Levi’s phone chimed, and he pulled it out. It was a message from Sylvia. Something was happening in Naperville, she also mentioned something about Jennifer, and undying love. Levi had trouble getting through it all without his eyes glazing over.
Definitely spirit stuff.
“Maybe I should go,” Spatz said.
He looked up, and pointed at the kitchen, “Get your sandwich. Just, you know, put the bread together.”
“You mean make the sandwich?”
Spatz walked into the kitchen, put it together, and took a bite. “This is pretty good.”
“Of course it is,” Levi said, “I made it.”
Spatz nodded, and walked to the door. “Let me know where you go, okay?”
“If I don’t, is your girlfriend going to unleash the hounds?”
“Girlfriend? Meredith?” Spatz grimaced, “Sick.”
“I’m not going to get hurt,” Levi said, rolling his eyes.
Levi could see Spatz trying not to look at his arm. There it was again, trying not to notice.
“If you don’t tell me, I’ll hunt you down,” Spatz said, “That’s my job.”
“As her minion?” Levi said as Spatz opened the door.
“As an officer in my department,” Spatz said as he turned on the porch, “It is literally my job.”
“Plus,” Spatz added, sniffing at the air, “Wolf stuff. We don’t take this pack thing lightly.”
He shook his head, and closed the door on Spatz. “Idiot.”
As Spatz walked back to his car, he didn’t look up at the trees, or on the roof of the cabin. Which made it easy to miss all the crows there, watching, in silence.
Inside, Levi went over to the window and opened it. Two crows hopped in, letting out soft caws and adjusting on the window sill.
“Well,” Levi said to the birds as he pulled his laptop over to the counter near the window, “I hope you have something interesting for me.”