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Losing Our Home

I ran my hands through his smooth, thick raven black fur, casting unwanted hair into the breezy cool night air. As I lay beside him, we were bathed in the luminescent light of the rising full moon. We lay there, seemingly as one, man and beast conjoined, hearts beating consistently, to the rhythm of the surrounding wilderness. I soaked up all I could withstand of that night: the swaying and rustling of the towering trees, the scent of freshly fallen leaves, the chirping of neighboring crickets, and the breathing of my companion, of which my head rested on. This was going to be the very last night Rafe and I had together to roam the woods, our sanctuary, located on the outskirts of town.

It was the only place left in this hick town turned upper eastside, Rafe and I could call home. That is the only place where a wolf may truly call his, the only place suitable to raise a young pack, in the wild. I knew I would be able to continue having an existence in this world without the wilderness just a howl away, but I could sense Rafe was going to have some discomfort. He didn’t belong locked up in some tight knit, claustrophobic causing house.

This was our last night together, because once the sun peeked its head out from behind the clouds that morning, the cold-hearted demolition crew was moving in and kicking us out. Good bye to God’s astonishing gift to us and hello to concrete buildings filled with overpriced commercial goods. I along with other environmentalists in our town tried to persuade the town council, but they were hard headed and would not budge. They thought the new ingoing mall would be put to more use, then a desolate darkened forest, inhabited only by the living creatures within it and long forgotten forest spirits.

To us, it meant so much more. The woods weren’t just a place for skittish deer, squirrels munching on acorns, or thousands of crawling, slimy bugs. It was a place to
prowl the shadows that hung over the night, a place to slowly creep and stalk our prey, just a simple place where we could be without the wandering eyes of society. That very forest was where I even found and rescued Rafe. His mother was a local zoo runaway. Before she was shot by local hunters, she gave birth to her son, giving him at least a chance at freedom. I claimed him as my own and promised he would never harm an innocent soul before hunters had a chance to lay a hand on him.

I would have loved to stay like that all night, my head resting on Rafe’s flank and listening to the voice of the forest, but I knew we could not. I slowly got up causing Rafe to become alarmed. He bolted right up, hair sticking up on end, and a growl caught in the depths of his throat. “Hush boy,” I said to him. “Everything is alright. See, I’m fine.” After a minute Rafe calmed down, but before I knew it he was running of into the cover of nightfall with me at his heels. I never did look back to see that last glance of what Rafe and I called home.





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