my father was looking at me, leaning over in his gray long-sleeved shirt and staring through his glasses. i felt as if i were being vivisected. he turned around and walked out of the room. i stood in the middle of the room and listened to an emergency broadcast. i began listening too late, because all i heard was, “stay inside. do not go outside. stay inside. stay inside.”
now it was nighttime at our house and my parents were asleep or somewhere else—either way, they were not present. i was standing at the top of a flight of stairs, looking down the three stories to the bottom. a window at my level shielded everything in a dull, glowing silver light.
i suddenly felt a rush of hot energy that began from my middle and pulsed just below my stomach. without knowing until i was already in the air, i had jumped from the third story and was leaping down the walls. i could feel that i was not in my true body anymore, and that i was not in total control. somehow i had become a werewolf, and even though i could not see myself, i could feel that it was true. i felt new, wild, and unstoppable.
the next afternoon was when the news broke out of people being bitten. i did not know if i had done it singlehandedly, because i could not remember, but i wasn’t the first to speak up about it. all of the townspeople had gathered in a large football field and were being told to stick together. i climbed up on a metal rod and tried looking for whoever was speaking, but i could not see them. the group was getting restless, so i decided it was best to get out of the area.
back at my house a group of friends and i were claiming rooms to sleep in. there were maybe fifteen of us, and my house had plenty of room to accommodate everyone. i claimed my own room, the largest attic bedroom, and fixed the other bed for someone else to sleep there. i got up and walked out into the hallway where a boy stood, leaning against the top railing post, grinning at me. i grinned back and walked up to him. he swiftly grabbed my waist and pressed my back against the wall, our kissing growing more and more passionate. i slid my hand to the small of his back and pressed his hips against mine, arching my back away so that i could get a brief look at him. it was someone that i knew, but not very well.
i ran back down the stairs to where the rest of my friends were gathered, and i felt the hot energy boiling up in my middle again. i snapped my jaw together and howled, quieting them down. i was a werewolf again, their leader, and watched as they transformed into bundled balls of muscle wrapped in snarling wiry fur.
“there are many more of us than i expected,” i said, standing straight. “we will need a big hunt tonight to feed everyone.” their snarls and barks were all that i needed for confirmation. we waited until dusk fell upon us again to begin.