A Howl in the Wind

📅 Published on April 5, 2022

“A Howl in the Wind”

Written by J.C. Fields
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on CreepypastaStories.com are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed, adapted to film, television or audio mediums, republished in a print or electronic book, reposted on any other website, blog, or online platform, or otherwise monetized without the express written consent of its author(s).

🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available

ESTIMATED READING TIME — 20 minutes

Rating: 10.00/10. From 1 vote.
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Henri Greyson heard a mournful howl of wind when he stopped to catch his breath. After a harrowing dash through the forest, he rested his hand against an old oak’s trunk for support. Looking up, bare limbs swayed in the cold fall gusts.

Moisture-laden clouds raced northwest to southeast playing hide and seek with the moon. The on and off darkness obscured the landscape ahead. A sense of vertigo swept over him as he gasped for air and experienced the altering illumination.

Far in the distance, he heard a low rumble. The first evidence of an approaching storm made itself known. His panic intensified. As the thunder grew louder, the cloud density could thicken and reduce the light from the moon. He would be trapped in this nightmare of a forest where directions seemed meaningless.

A sudden rustle of leaves from behind spurred him to run again. Only the dimming light from the moon kept him from running headlong into one of the many trees spread out before him.

A sudden clap of thunder settled into a low rumble as he struggled to catch his breath. Looking toward the sky the lunar disk grew more obscure as a solid haze of cloud enclosed around it. Sounds of pursuers grew louder as he plunged ahead. His lungs felt on the verge of bursting.

A fallen log tripped him. He fell face down in the thick carpet of leaves shed by their once gracious hosts. Panic engulfed him, he had to keep moving.

When he tried to push himself up, a force pressed hard on his back and his face once again encountered the damp loam on the forest floor. A stinging sensation burned between his shoulder blades and the vertigo returned. The sounds of the storm faded as his world turned black.

* * * * * *

Greyson’s eyes fluttered open. A strong scent of moist earth permeated his surroundings. Bound to the hard surface where he lay, his arms and legs were immobile. Enclosed by darkness, only a horizontal streak of light could be seen low to his left. The dim radiance failed to reveal any details of the space. A tear tracked down his temple after he blinked to clear an irritation in his eye.

Metal on metal clattered above the thin slit of illumination. A door opened revealing a shadow surrounded by a halo of brightness.

“Ah, Greyson, you’re finally awake.”

“No thanks to you.”

“If memory serves, you’re the one who decided to take an unauthorized stroll after dark. Did I not warn you about the folly of trekking through the forest at night?”

Greyson closed his eyes and remained quiet.

“You should thank me. Where you fell is a low spot, subject to flash floods. Particularly during storms like the one we experienced last night.”

“I am so very fortunate.”

“Yes, you are. But I should mention, your sarcasm is not appreciated.”

A searing pain shot through his lower extremities. He gritted his teeth and took a sharp breath.

The silhouetted figure said, “Do I have your attention?”

Through a clenched jaw, he said, “Yes.”

“Good. Professor Greyson, the contract you signed with my laboratory specified your expertise in genetics would be at our disposal. You’re currently in violation of that agreement.”

“I didn’t know you would be conducting experiments on humans.”

The man sighed, “Oh…Professor…you are so naïve. How could we conduct authentic genetic manipulations if we didn’t work on human volunteers?”

“You never mentioned that.” Greyson heard a chuckle emerge from the gloom.

“My good doctor, why would I want to use rats? There are plenty of wretched souls in the northern part of this island. Individuals, I might add, who do not enhance the human condition.”

“Experimenting on people is unethical.”

“Please spare me your moral platitudes. If we are to survive as a species, we will need to possess superior senses and intelligence over the coming millennia. Evolution is too slow for man to adapt to the rapid environmental changes we are experiencing. Therefore, it will be up to us to create our own enhancements.”

“So, you plan to be the one who provides these improvements. By playing God?”

“Playing god has nothing to do with it, professor. Creating a superior human is the ultimate goal. Can you imagine what wealthy individuals will spend to have a clone of themselves? One that will have enhanced intelligence and senses?”

“It’s all about the money, isn’t it?”

“Doctor, you are once again relying on flawed Judeo-Christian ethos. Attitudes from a time and place which no longer exist. In today’s world, everything is about money and power. I might remind you, money buys power.”

“No, I will not be a part of your scheme.”

“That’s too bad.”

Another searing pain spread through his spine until Nobel Prize-winning geneticist Henri Greyson, MD and Ph.D., succumbed to darkness.

* * * * * *

Galiano Island, located between Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, Canada, is available to mainlanders only by ferry. A long and narrow island, a majority of the land is covered in deciduous and evergreen trees. Access to various parts of the island is by modern paved roads, while other portions rely only on old logging trails. The laboratory, now occupied by Doctor Greyson against his will, resided in a less traveled, heavily wooded, privately-owned tract of land near the southern tip of the island.

Self-contained with the utilization of solar panels and wind turbines, few individuals knew of its existence or significance. The owner of the land, Victor Deus, protected his privacy and advocation with diligence and resolve.

Watching the setting sun, he sat on his veranda warmed by a standalone brick firepit. The deep purples and oranges on the horizon indicated another storm brewed to the west. After a sip of his single malt scotch imported from the mainland, he turned to his assistant in the chair next to him. “I had hoped Doctor Greyson would be more open to our project, my dear.”

“Victor, you need to vet these people better, or it will be the same each time you bring one of them into your confidence.” Cheryl Ward sipped a glass of Sauvignon Blanc. She looked at Victor. “Your vision is far ahead of the current scientific thought. Most geneticists still look at your research as furthering the practice of eugenics.”

“Nothing could be further from the truth.”

“You and I both know that. However, many of your contemporaries have the perception your research will only benefit the elite.”

Deus sipped his scotch as dusk turned to night. “In a sense, they are right. In the beginning, only those who can afford the procedure will benefit. But like most new ideas and inventions, the costs will decrease as the technology is improved.”

She sipped her wine and watched the distant flashes of lightning off in the western sky. “Yes, my darling. And you will hold the patents on the technology.”

* * * * * *

The Next Morning

Deus observed the failed experiment through the one-way glass. The individual paced like a caged lion, even though it possessed few genetic sequences from the species Panthera leo. The creature resembled a wolf but with numerous human characteristics. With the familiar long snout, the similarity ended there as it morphed into the rounded skull of a human female. Hunched over, the forearms were longer than the rear legs which caused the creature to move with a gait similar to a lowland gorilla. The thick black fur covering the beast appeared to be a mix of a canine and chimpanzee.

He folded his arms and spoke into a microphone next to a medical monitor showing the creature’s heart and respiratory rates. “Good morning, Heidi.”

The pacing stopped. She bared her fangs, glared at the window, and emitted a low growl.

“You know where I am, don’t you?”

The snarl intensified.

“You have more innate intelligence than you are allowing us to see.”

The howl changed to a series of barks and wails. She charged the window but stopped just short of ramming it. The head lowered but the eyes stayed locked on Deus, even though she could not see him. A low-pitched moan resonated through the speakers next to the medical monitor.

Turning off the microphone, Deus checked the monitor and saw an accelerated heart and respiratory rate. “Good, your emotions are maturing and producing the proper physiological response.”

The door to the observation lab opened and a woman of small stature entered. “Good morning, Doctor Deus.”

“Mornin’ Ms. Hines.”

“What are your instructions this morning concerning, Heidi’s diet?”

“Continue with the hi-protein, low carbohydrate combination for another week. We’ll see if her cognitive responses continue to improve. I’m very pleased with her progress so far.”

“Yes, Doctor.” The diminutive woman shut the door and left.

He pulled a chair out from a desk and sat. With a touch on a keyboard, the computer monitor brightened and he retrieved his prior notes, he typed:

Subject has exhibited heightened perception this a.m. and appears to sense my presence through the observation window. DNA analysis has determined the slicing we attempted did not manifest itself in the precise way we envisioned. However, the appearance of acute awareness by the subject is encouraging. The procedure may eventually be capable of producing the results originally hypothesized.

He stopped typing and removed his glasses. Doctor Greyson’s input into the process of splicing DNA had taken the project to this point. His refusal to assist further could only be described as catastrophic for the project.

Standing, he went back to the observation window to see if Heidi would sense his presence. The creature lay curled up with its head down. As soon as Deus stood in front of the window, she raised her head, stared in his direction, bared her fangs and issued a low grumble.

Hearing the sound, Deus, checked to make sure all sounds were being recorded inside the creature’s habitat. “Very good, Heidi.”

* * * * * *

Henri Greyson, emeritus professor of evolutionary genetics at Stanford University, stared at the ceiling. His absence and lack of communication with former colleagues would not create any warning signs. Habitually a loner, he never married and lived alone for decades. He rarely saw his housekeeper since she came late mornings once a week and he had given her notice he would be out of town for the foreseeable future.

Remorse consumed him at having taken the position Doctor Deus offered without making proper inquiries. The project and the man’s intentions weighed heavy on his mind. Released from the metal table in the laboratory and escorted back to his dorm room, Greyson speculated how much longer he would be allowed to live. He possessed little hope of ever being released to spread the word about all the horrendous experiments being conducted at this facility.

He lay on his bed with his hands behind his head, staring at the ceiling when he heard a knock on his door. He ignored it. The knocking persisted, but at a higher volume. Finally, he rose and went to the door. “Yes.”

“Professor Greyson, it’s Victor Deus, I would like to discuss a proposal.”

“What kind of a proposal?”

“May I come in?”

“You obviously have a key. Use it.”

“I would prefer you voluntarily let me in.”

“Very well.” He unlocked the door and let it swing open as he stepped back into the room. Deus stood there, a slight grin on his face as he stepped in.

“Thank you, Professor.”

“What do you want?”

“Your continued cooperation with our project.”

“We had this discussion the other night. I will not take part in unethical or illegal experiments.”

“Even if the one we conducted has proven to be successful?”

Greyson studied Deus silently for several moments. “What do you mean successful?”

“Your work has produced a sentient being.”

The geneticist from Stanford remained quiet as he determined whether to believe this man he distrusted. He turned his back and walked to his bed.

“Did you hear me, Professor Greyson?”

“Yes, I heard you. The last time I saw the creature, it did not appear aware of its surroundings. That is a far cry from being sentient.”

“Heidi’s awareness and cognitive abilities grow exponentially with each day.”

Greyson sat on the unmade bunk and studied the floor. “Does it have the ability to voice sounds other than grunts?”

“Yes.”

Looking up, the professor said, “I don’t believe you.”

Deus held up a small device and pressed a button. The sound emitted from the small recorder resembled a growl, but Greyson distinctly heard the words. “Let me out.”

* * * * * *

The creature paced in the small room, turning to the observation window on every other pass. Greyson said, “She is only looking at her image as she passes the mirror. She is not aware we are here.”

As he finished speaking, the creature charged the glass and stopped just before reaching it. The words he heard on the recording were repeated. “Let me out.” The voice was low and rumbling.

“You see, Doctor Greyson, she hears you even though our microphones are off. She senses our presence in the room.”

“Fascinating.”

“Are you now ready to help again?”

Greyson remained quiet as he followed Heidi’s movements. “Have you let her outside, yet?”

“No, we do not know her strength.”

The professor turned to Deus. “You haven’t let her out of the cage?”

“No. All of this development has occurred in the past three days. With the only interaction being with her dietician and myself. All through remote access. No, personal contact.”

“Fascinating.” He stayed near the window and kept his gaze on the creature as it paced in the room again. “You must find an open space for her to roam where she will be safe.”

“Professor, that is the first time you have referred to it by gender.”

“I beg your pardon?”

“You have always referred to Heidi as it or the creature, never as a female.”

Greyson turned to Deus. “What did I call it?”

“You said, her and she.”

The professor glanced back at the creature who now lay on the floor of the cage like a content puppy dog. Head up and concentrating on the window from which they observed her. He said, “You mentioned a DNA analysis earlier. May I see it?”

Deus handed the professor a manilla folder. The man accepted the file without a word and studied the contents.

Five minutes later, he closed it and handed it back to Deus. “I see where I made my mistake.”

* * * * * *

Three Months Later

Henri Greyson no longer felt the compulsion to dispute the ethics of the experiments he conducted. Curiosity replaced indignation driving him to work twenty-hour days. Stopping only briefly for a snack or a three or four-hour nap. His concentration stayed on target day after day without diminishing returns.

Victor Deus no longer kept track of him, instead letting the professor follow his pursuits without supervision.

On the third day of the third week in the third month of Greyson’s renewed enthusiasm, he summoned Victor Deus to meet him in the laboratory at precisely noon.

“Yes, Professor.”

“Ah…Deus, you’re here. I need you to build an outdoor encampment.”

Folding his arms, the complex’s owner asked, “Why?”

“If you will remember, when we allowed Heidi to be in a larger space, her progression with perception and language grew exponentially.”

“Yes.”

“She allowed others to get in close proximity to her. Unfortunately, she lacked a gene sequence essential for the development of her immune system. She died of a common cold.”

“I am very much aware of this, Professor. So, why do we need an outdoor area for our subjects.”

“To allow them to be exposed to naturally occurring viruses and bacteria. Otherwise, we will constantly repeat what we created with Heidi.”

“Very well, I will have one constructed.”

“Thank you.”

* * * * * *

Late Winter

The fruits of Greyson’s efforts were two beings, one female and one male. Both resembled the physical appearance of Heidi, but with specific changes in their DNA sequencing. The professor’s observation of the two subjects occurred from a camouflaged deck high above the newly built and enclosed habitat. For lack of a better way to identify them, the professor dubbed them, Adam and Eve. Neither showed any aggression toward their human caregivers.

From the observations and interaction between them and Greyson, he hypothesized their intelligence to be greater than Heidi’s. However, neither had uttered any coherent words so far. Mostly grunts and clicks.

During an early morning scheduled observation, Victor Deus joined Greyson.

“How are your creations doing this morning, Professor?”

“I am developing a note of concern about them. While their perception and reasoning skills are far superior to Heidi’s, they have yet to develop language.”

“Language you understand, or are they non-communicative.”

Greyson glanced at Deus for a second before returning his gaze on the scene below their location. “Interesting question, Doctor Deus. However, I am a geneticist, not a linguist. Someone with a different skill set would need to determine the answer.”

“I obtained the services of Cheryl Ward before I started this endeavor. She is a linguistic anthropologist and would be more than happy to assist your assessment of Adam and Eve.”

With a raised eyebrow, Greyson nodded. “I believe that would be appropriate.”

* * * * * *

Two Weeks Later

The meeting occurred in the office of Cheryl Ward. “Adam and Eve have a system of communicating which is highly complex, Doctor Greyson.”

“Explain, Ms. Ward.”

“What we hear as clicks, grunts and growls are very specific sounds forming a vocabulary only they apparently understand. I have been able to deduce the meaning of some combinations, but not enough to be able to communicate with them. That will take months.”

Deus asked, “Professor Greyson, could there be a mutation in the genetic sequence which dictates the development of vocal cords?”

“Possibly. But I am most intrigued by how rapidly they developed a distinct language.”

Cheryl Ward nodded. “I too would like to know how they did it. In most human cultures, language is learned. Vocabulary evolves within a group and is passed from one generation to the next. This development between them is most intriguing.”

An extremely loud alarm bell sounded. At the exact same moment, Victor Deus’s cell phone pinged. Accepting the call, Deus listened as a frown grew on his face. He thanked the caller and said, “No one knows how they did it, but Adam and Eve are no longer in the compound. They’ve escaped.”

* * * * * *

Dreams, nightmares, hallucinations and visions haunted Henri Greyson once again. He could not distinguish between them anymore. When he slept, the pictures continued to get worse. He could not get the image of the now-dead Heidi out of his mind’s eye. Before her death, she had actually allowed him to place his hand on her head. Two days later, she took her last breath, ravaged by a virus a normal human easily fought off. Now with the disappearance of Adam and Eve, the consequences of his research began to penetrate his conscience once again.

The search for the elusive creatures by members of Victor Deus’s staff continued, but so far, no trace of them could be found. On the third day of the search, two staff members went missing.

Victor Deus paced as he listened to Cheryl Ward. “Doris Hines and Raymond Jones did not return from their assigned search area. Per your instructions, all search personnel are to be back before dark. That was an hour ago, they have yet to check in by radio.”

“Where were they assigned?”

“Southwest to the shores of the Trincomali Channel.”

“Okay, arm our security personnel and send them in. If it becomes necessary, they are to protect themselves.”

“I’ll take care of it.”

Deus left his private study and took the elevator to the floor below and the location of Henri Greyson’s room. He knocked on the door several times without a response. Finally, on the fourth series of rapping on the entrance, it opened.

A disheveled Professor Greyson held the door open. Dark circles under his eyes betrayed his weariness. The normally clean-shaven geneticist bore a four-day-old beard. His appearance gave pause to Deus. “Are you ill, Professor?”

“No. Have they found Adam and Eve?”

The question answered Deus’s concern. The geneticists’ worry about the missing Adam and Eve, were dominating his thoughts. “No, now we have two staff members missing as well.”

“Where were they searching?”

“Southwest.”

“Concentrate your search efforts there.”

Folding his arms Deus asked, “Do you know something you have not informed us about?”

Greyson stared at Deus for several moments and then nodded.

“Should we consider Adam and Eve dangerous?”

“Yes, extremely.”

“Why didn’t you mention this before, Professor?”

“Because you would have ordered them euthanized.”

Crimson spread up Deus’s cheeks. He clenched his teeth and glared at the professor.

“Greyson, if Hines and Jones are not found alive…” He turned and hurried to inform the rest of his team.

* * * * * *

The Next Morning

At the first light of dawn, three Jeeps exited the entrance to Victor Deus’s compound. Each contained a driver and a passenger. Both were armed with AR-15s chambered with 5.56 NATO rounds. Instructions from Victor Deus to these individuals demanded if they caught sight of Adam or Eve, shoot to kill.

The creature known as Adam observed this activity from the safety of dense underbrush which concealed his location. To him the past did not matter, surviving, getting to tomorrow and protecting his mate did.

His mate, Eve, lay hidden ten meters from where he crouched. Her scent had changed, creating an urgent need within him to protect her. Plentiful amounts of food presented themselves to the two creatures since escaping the confines of the building. Within the structure, trees existed. But underbrush did not. Adam preferred the underbrush which offered opportunities to secure and capture sustenance.

A new scent could be detected emanating from the building. The receptors in his snout caused an unease within him. An unease he did not understand until their encounter, the previous day, with the two hairless beings.

Fear.

The inhabitants of the building feared him and Eve. Instinctively, he knew this to be a powerful weapon. A weapon he could use against those who wished to return he and Eve to the confines of the building.

* * * * * *

Greg Dubois, head of security for Victor Deus’s company, stopped the Jeep, turned to the man who held the AR-15, Remy Rousseau, and pointed. “What does that look like over there?”

Rousseau studied the area Dubois indicated. “Aww, man. I hope it isn’t what it looks like. Cover me. I’ll check it out.”

The driver shifted the vehicle to park and reached for his rifle in the back seat. As Rousseau entered the underbrush, Dubois stood ready to protect if needed. Seconds ticked by as he neared the object he sought to examine.

“It’s her, Greg. Get a tarp.”

After the remains of Doris Hines were covered, Dubois returned to the Jeep and reported the discovery on their radio. “This is Dubois, I need to speak to Victor.”

Two minutes later, he heard. “What did you find, Greg?”

“We found Doris.”

Silence came from the speaker. Finally, he heard. “I take it she is deceased.”

“Unfortunately, yes, sir.”

“Without going into details, how did she die?”

“Violently.”

“I was afraid of that.”

The radio grew silent as Dubois waited for further instructions. “I will send someone to collect the body. Don’t leave her alone until they get there. Give me your location.” After he understood where the two men were, Deus asked. “Any sign of Raymond Jones?”

“Not yet, sir.”

“Very well. Keep me posted.”

* * * * * *

Originally trained as a medical doctor, Victor Deus’s curiosity about creating a super human led him away from his lucrative medical practice to the field of research. With the recovery of Doris Hines’s small body, he would utilize his knowledge of physiology to try to determine how she died.

When he uncovered her on the examination table, he knew immediately the cause of death. Putting the sheet back over the woman, he went to the intercom next to the laboratory door and pressed a button. “Summon Professor Greyson to the lab immediately.”

A disconnected voice replied. “Yes, sir.”

Ten minutes later, an ashen-faced Henri Greyson stared at the mutilated body of Doris Hines.

Deus asked, “Did you anticipate this, Professor?”

A slow shake of Greyson’s head became the answer. He remained quiet for almost a minute. “This is what results when we play God, Victor.”

“You seem to forget Adam and Eve are of your making.”

“Man is not smart enough to understand the delicate balance years of natural selection provide a species. Your obsession with speeding up the process has caused this catastrophe.” He turned his attention away from the body and looked at Deus. “I was a fool to let my excitement of discovery overcome my repugnance for this research.”

“Greyson, I have never seen anyone vacillate so fast between euphoric enthusiasm and self-loathing as you have. In my opinion, you are mentally unstable and I have no further need for your assistance. Your contract with this institution is terminated, effective immediately. Now get off my land.” Deus turned and walked out of the laboratory leaving Henri Greyson standing alone next to the partially consumed body of Doris Hines.

* * * * * *

The wide variety of sea life in the waters off the southern tip of Galiano Island and the northern shores of Mayne Island provided a sanctuary, of sorts, for Harold Betchworth. Now in his early eighties and a widower, his meager pension earned from working four and a half decades as a longshoreman at the Port of Vancouver, barely sustained him. He sublimated his earnings by selling his daily catch to restaurants in the Richmond and Vancouver, British Columbia area.

His small fishing boat trolled the waters fifty meters offshore on this unusually warm day in late August. With a successful morning behind him, he prepared to raise his nets one more time before heading for the mainland twenty kilometers to the northeast.

After raising his starboard net with ease, he stored the catch in one of his many coolers and tossed ice on top. Efforts to raise his port net were not successful. He struggled with it for almost ten minutes before it broke free and rose.

The torn net hung empty as he stared at it. A noise to the stern caused him to turn and witness the emergence from the water of what he would later describe as a spawn of the devil.

* * * * * *

Henri Greyson boarded a ferry at the Sturdies Bay Terminal for the ride to the Tsawwassen, British Columbia Terminal. He originally arrived on Galiano Island via a car sent by Victor Deus. He did not receive the same courtesy for his journey back to the United States.

After finding a secluded spot in the passenger lounge, he settled in for the ferry ride and to contemplate his future. Halfway across the channel, he overheard a conversation between two men laughing about the ravings of a senile old fisherman. When he heard the word wolfman spoken by one of the two, he paid closer attention to the discussion.

Two minutes later, he stood and approached the two men. “Excuse me, I couldn’t help but overhear your conversation. Did you mention something about an old man transporting two wolfmen across the Strait of Georgia?”

The younger of the two men chuckled. “Yeah, craziest story I ever heard. He’s a local from Tsawwassen who makes a few extra bucks selling fresh fish to a pub I go to. He told the owner about these two wolf creatures who came out of the sea and had him take them to an isolated spot on the US mainland.”

“Did they mention where?”

The man stared at Greyson for a few moments. “Nah…I stopped listening after that.”

“Could you tell me the name of the pub?”

“Why, do you believe the old coot?”

Greyson shook his head and smiled, “No, but I like pubs that serve fresh fish.”

Two hours later, he entered an establishment known as Rivera’s Reef Tavern and sat at the bar. He ordered fish and chips. After he finished his meal, he asked the bartender where he got his fish.

“Local guy, goes out every morning and is back here by noon with his catch. I normally buy most of it. Why?”

“It’s hard to find good seafood where I’m from. Does he guide?”

“Don’t know, never asked him.”

“Know where he lives, I could check with him myself?”

“No, sorry. But he’ll be here in the morning a little after ten. You can ask him then.”

* * * * * *

The Next Morning

Harold Betchworth tied his Everglades Center Console Bay boat to the dock alongside Rivera’s Tavern. Henri Greyson stepped up and asked if he could assist. Betchworth raised an eyebrow. “What for? I’ve got it.”

“I understand you had two passengers the other day.”

The old man stopped what he was doing and stared at the stranger. “Why would you care? So, you can make fun of me, too.”

“No. Because I know who they are and I need to find them.”

Betchworth looked hard at Greyson. “Let me get my fish sold and then you can buy me a beer.”

An hour later, Betchworth wolfed down a sandwich purchased for him by Greyson. After he ate, he sipped on a beer and eyed his benefactor. “You never told me your name.”

“Henri Greyson.”

“So, you say you know them?”

“No, I said I know who they are and I need to find them.”

The old man shrugged. “Don’t know where they are. They jumped out of the boat about twenty meters from shore and swam the rest of the way. Last I saw them, they were running toward a wooded area north of Neptune Beach.”

“How did they communicate with you?”

“That’s the weird thing. They didn’t. The male pointed toward the east and I understood what he meant.”

“I’m, sorry. He did what?”

“I said, the male pointed his finger and I knew where he wanted me to take them.”

“They didn’t say anything?”

Betchworth shook his head. “Not a word. I did hear the female growl once. But she was rubbing her tummy.”

Greyson hesitated to ask his next question. “Was there something wrong with her?”

“She was pregnant.”

“They told you?”

“Nope. I just knew. Kind of like voices in my head but not. Know what I mean?”

Henri Greyson wanted to ask more questions, but the revelation from the elderly man caused his head to swim. Finally, he said, “Let me get this straight, you heard voices in your head?”

“Not voices. Geez, people would really think I was crazy if I said anything like that. I just knew what they needed and that’s what I did.” He took a sip of beer.

“Did you feed them, Mr. Betchworth?”

“I didn’t have to. They helped themselves to some of the fish I’d caught that day. Ate it raw, heads, scales and all. Thought you said you knew them. Why are you asking all of these questions?”

“I need to find them.”

“Good luck with that, the male acted like he didn’t want to be found. But I think I know where they are headed.”

“Where?”

“There’s an Indian nation not far from where they entered the woods. It’s called the Lummi Reservation.”

“Go on.”

“It was more of a feeling than having someone tell me. You know?”

“No, I’m afraid I don’t.” Greyson stood. “Feel lucky you survived your encounter with these two. You are the first human to have contact with them and remain alive.” He turned and walked out of the pub.

As he went through the door, he heard Betchworth say, “What do you mean ‘first human’…” The rest of the question could not be heard due to the crashing of waves on the dock.

* * * * * *

Greyson obtained a map of the Northwest Washington state region and located the Lummi Reservation. After numerous phone calls and transfers to individuals who could not help him, he reached a tribal elder. He made an appointment for the following day and immediately rented a car.

Arriving fifteen minutes ahead of his appointment at the Sovereignty and Treaty Protection Office, he stood in the parking lot and admired the natural beauty of the surrounding woodlands. At the appointed time, he was shown into the office of the head of the tribal council, Morgan Bellew. The man stood and offered his hand.

As they shook, he said, “It is an honor to meet you, Professor Greyson. I did an internet search on you before our appointment. You have quite the academic resume.”

“I am flattered you took the time to do so, Mr. Bellew.”

The man gestured toward a chair in front of his desk. “Please, make yourself comfortable.” As they sat, Bellew clasped his hands together and looked Greyson in the eye. “I will not tell you where they are.”

“I beg your pardon?”

“I know why you are here and I will not expose their location. The female is with child and it will be born as a sovereign citizen of this tribal nation.”

Greyson raised an eyebrow. “Mr. Bellew, I do not believe you understand who or what you are protecting.”

“We understand perfectly who we offered shelter to, Professor. Within our culture, all creatures of the earth are sacred. The two individuals, we now protect, maybe more so than others.”

The conversation continued for another hour with Morgan Bellew emphasizing the tribe’s position numerous times.

When Bellew escorted Greyson out of his office, he kept the door open. He stopped, folded his arms, and tilted his head slightly. “Professor, we can appreciate your concern for our new guests. But do not attempt to find them. We are an ancient tribe, with ancient beliefs and traditions. We will protect the child and its parents at all costs.” His glare sent shivers up the professor’s spine.

By the time Greyson returned to his rental car, night had fallen. A stiff wind blew hard out of the northwest. Moisture-laden clouds played hide and seek across the face of a full moon. The scene reminded him of a night nearly a year ago. A similar howl in the wind gusting through the trees reached his ears. It was the night he ran through the forests of Galiano Island. Running in an attempt to escape the nightmares he knew existed within the laboratories owned by Victor Deus. Now, due to his own assistance, those horrors had been released into the world.

Rating: 10.00/10. From 1 vote.
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🎧 Available Audio Adaptations: None Available


Written by J.C. Fields
Edited by Craig Groshek
Thumbnail Art by Craig Groshek
Narrated by N/A

🔔 More stories from author: J.C. Fields


Publisher's Notes: N/A

Author's Notes: N/A

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