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Friday, October 26, 2012

Dogged by the Curse 07

This scene is finally finished!
A note about the moon: Father Benedict
notes that there has been no full moon
during the time Dietrich believes he has changed.
This is actually a modern movie addition
to the werewolf myth. Although some legends
include a change at a full moon, those myths
chose specific full moons, happening
perhaps once a year. Likewise with the wolf bite.
I chose to let the Father mention
these things to let the reader know
this change is NOT a standard "wolf-out."
When I'm done, I'll have to go back
and make it clear in the first section
that the moon is not full.

Dietrich sighed. "I have these dreams,
These violent dreams of torn flesh
And piles of mangled bodies;
Dreams of faces, terrified, screaming
As they turn to see me falling on them;
Dreams of claws and fangs and
Raging bloodlust. When I wake,
I could be anywhere besides my bed –
Sometimes a cave, sometimes beneath a bush,
Once behind a garden shed –
And always naked, never in my bedclothes.
I sometimes find them shredded but
Sometimes not at all. And lately
I find I've lost my appetite;
The thought of eating sickens me.
My servant says I'll waste away
And yet I've lost no weight."
He shuddered. "Father, I'm afraid."

Benedict reached out to pat his shoulder,
The slightest smile upon his lips –
Not mocking, just a friendly consolation.
"You overlook the obvious, my friend.
A man disturbed by nightmares may,
While sleeping, rend his clothes;
May, in his distress, walk in his sleep;
And may, perhaps, forget how much he eats.
But there are more important questions here,
Questions you have yet to answer.
Has there been a full moon lately?
None that I have seen – and I should know,
As many of our church's celebrations
Fall on days determined by its fullness.
Without the full moon, can the werewolf come?"

Dietrich sat in silence.
He had not considered this.

Father Benedict continued:
"A greater question yet remains. Tell me now:
Have you been bitten by a wolf?
Surely you'd remember that,
Even if it happened in your sleep!
Have you a wound that I may see,
An injury that might lend substance
To your fears? A man does not become
A werewolf just because he fears he has.
Show me your wound; make me believe
A man might turn into a wolf."

"I have no wound, Father," Dietrich said. "And
I know the moon has not been full these nights.
Nevertheless, I know that something happens
When the darkness falls... and sleep with it.
Last night I locked myself inside a cave
I found on my estate some years ago.
Inside it is a cage; I know not when
It came to be, nor who the builder was,
Nor what his purpose might have been.
I only know I locked myself inside
Last night… and found the door torn open when
I woke this morning. Reason plays no part
In this, as far as I can see.
I have no answers, only questions…
Questions and despair."

Benedict cocked his head. "A cage? You found
A cage? On your estate, inside a cave?"
He gazed out the window, seeing nothing,
Lost in thought. "Something sounds familiar here.
I can't quite place it… Could you show me?
Will you take me there?"

Dietrich glanced outside and saw the sun
Dipping down to touch the trees.
"Not today; it's much too late. I fear
What I may do to you, my friend…"

"I understand," the Father said. "Tomorrow
Would be better anyway. I need to think.
Something seems familiar here. A cage…"

Dietrich rose. "I need to go now, Father.
The sun sets and I fear –"

"Then go," said Benedict with a smile.
"Ease your mind, my friend. Sleep well tonight.
Tomorrow we shall track your wolf."

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