|Image © Rachel Bjerke|
The beast that roamed in from the moors that night was mad with hunger and painted black by myth. It took the children by the ruined forge, and when they found the bodies at the stone trough they wished they hadn’t.
By then they’d pushed the wolves out into the wild and empty places, but now and then their paths would cross with ours and the fireside tales the old folk told would not seem quite so distant.
MacDhuibh hefted his rifle and hitched up his breeches. There was blood on the air, and the hunt, he knew, had already begun.
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This is a 100-word flash fiction story, prompted by the ridiculously evocative picture you can see up there, as part of Friday Fictioneers.
Click here if you’d like to take part, and click here to read other pieces.
14 thoughts on “The Last Wolf”
Interesting to get a piece of history. Great story!
“and when they found the bodies at the stone trough they wished they hadn’t.”…..that line sets the backdrop of the story so perfectly!
Ah those stories about the wolves .. they live in myths and has been the reason for many men taking to the rifle killing wolves until they are gone..
We could send you some wolves from the western US where they've been re-introduced to praise from one side (usually those not living there a/o not owning anything the wolves eat) and the ranchers, whose animals the wolves naturally see as their meals. :-) I like your line about the wolf being “painted black by myth.”
Wonderful language, and atmosphere. I love the last paragraph, with the image of MacDhuibh hitching up his breeches ready for action. Great stuff.
Almost about to be a creature of myths if McDuhibh wins out. You get the feeling that perhaps the wolf is also hunting him. Interesting bit of history. Great visual pictures given.
Great imagery and the name MacDhuibh is perfect for your story!
Thanks Caerlynn. Glad you liked it!
Thank you – it's always gratifying in these very short pieces to stumble upon a phrase that gets more across than you'd planned…
Right – I read about it, and apparently it was only really children who were at risk, or perhaps lone (drunk?) travellers who'd wandered off the paths. It sounds as though wolves mostly kept themselves to themselves.
They're talking about reintroducing the wolf to Scotland, so we might not need any of yours…!
I'm glad you picked up on that – it's what I intended. There's no longer story (yet…) but if and when I write one, I'd like the feeling to be that it's a mutual hunt.
Thanks! I always spend far too long picking names…they have to be just right. I'm relieved that you think this one fits too!