The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
by Elaine Pascale
Sometimes the wolf lives outside the woods.
Sometimes a girl races to him. He has no need to engage her in competition: his beefy breath, a seductive scent, draws her to the water’s edge.
This girl had discarded her red cloak years before. It was a maiden’s hood and she had long since abandoned her maidenhood.
The gala had been the event for all debutantes, but no one there could hold her attention. Then she heard his howl in the distance, and she remembered running wild and free in the pre-menses days when she could cavort naked and dirty and roll in the muck with those more feral than she.
She would tame him, she thinks, just as she had been tamed and stuffed into civilized clothing.
In the early days of puberty, he had called to her from the woods. He wanted to challenge her to a race; he wanted to see the wind blowing in her long hair as she ran. He wanted her to doff her cloak and wrestle with him in the mud.
She ached to go to him and run her hands over his tangled, coarse coat but she had no longer been allowed into a forest that smelled of festering tombs. Hunters had chased him away and she had not heard him again until now.
He is not a beast, she thinks, he is simply without love.
This time, when she heard him, she knew his howl was laced with desire. She knew what desire was even though no man had caused her to feel it yet. The wolf had left the woods for a new home and once a month, he called someone to him. This time, he chose her. He called to her, as he had years before. He remembered her, and that made her feel special.
He is not a monster, she thinks, only misunderstood.
She knows he could slice her to ribbons. That is part of the thrill.
It doesn’t take her long to arrive at the water’s edge. A savage heat within her forced her to run fast. The sea smells damp; she is damp. She aches for something wild.
The rocky cave side looks like a face and it is called Sobbing Rock. The rock appears to cover its mouth; the rock has already seen too much.
She hears him breathing. Deep, calm breaths. Her heart is hammering, more with excitement than fear. In her civilized state, she has become too dull and bored to fear anything.
His red eyes glow from inside the cave. The redness does not bother or warn her; she believes she has tangled with worse.
She steps into the cave which smells of fresh graves. He doesn’t move or speak; he doesn’t need to.
She remembers something about a requirement to compliment him on his size, on the enormity of his body parts. She believes he will like that and become docile in her praise. She starts to talk about those large red eyes.
Then sees the depraved décor of hunting trophies he amassed by sitting perfectly still and she understands why the rock sobs.
Fiction © Copyright Elaine Pascale
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
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