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They say the moon can make you a little mad. Maybe that's why I stop. I'm driving home late. Admittedly, I'm a little drunk from a solitary glass of gin I snuck in the office. Even when I hear the sickening sound of my rubber tires hitting something and squelching over it, I don't want to stop. I just want to drive home, take a hot bath, and go to sleep. But there is no denying the reality of the lump grinding beneath my wheels. I don't want to see the bloody mess I've created out of the once-­living flesh. I hate blood. It makes me feel faint. ­Besides, I don't want to acknowledge that as a result of my human error, I have quenched the spark of life.

I don't want to stop.

I have no reason to stop – no one has witnessed my would-be hit and run. But something makes me press my foot on the brake.

I get out of the car. The world is dark, illuminated only by my pale headlights and the silvery glow of the moon. At first I can't see anything. I round the car, almost convinced that my imagination was at play. That's when I hear the keening. It comes in bursts, sharp and pitiful. I close in on the sound.

There, I find the mangled form of a great gray wolf. Its body has been rearranged by the force of the impact with the car. It lies limp, and for a moment I am confused about the source of the noise. Then a small patch of fur detaches itself from the maroon mass of shadows. It makes a whining noise. Its eyes glitter in the moonlight. It's just a baby. Just a pup covered in its mother's cooling blood, but it's alive.

A lifetime of warnings about rabies and wolves and sharp teeth flash through my mind, even as I pick up the pup and wrap it in my shirt. It doesn't put up a fight. Instead, it snuggles against my skin as I drive home in the moonlight.

At home, I make a bed of newspapers in my sock drawer and put the wolf pup inside. It looks strange and wild in the dry light of my bedroom, but I am too tired to know what else to do. I resolve to take the pup to Animal Control in the morning, and then I sink into a deep sleep, punctuated by occasional squeaks from the wolf.

I wake up to the sound of a baby crying. The noise is harsh and foreign, as unfamiliar and unexpected as drywall crumbling in my bedroom. Dazed, I stagger out of bed. Finally my mind clears enough for me to realize the sound is coming from the sock drawer.


“They say the moon can make you a little mad,” I always warn my daughter. I tell her to lock herself away when the full moon comes out, and it's almost become second nature to her. They say the moon can make you a little mad, but I'm not sure if she's the mad one or I am.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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This article has 6 comments. Post your own!

JRayeThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Sep. 18 at 5:28 pm:
This is seriously amazing :) Cutoz on the Editos Choice
 
ROYCEPHUSThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
today at 9:45 pm :
Merci beaucoup
 
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TargonTheDragonThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Sep. 18 at 10:41 am:
i really like this. i thought at first that it was you telling the truth (or were you?) and i thought, by the end of the story, that it was fictional. i could believe you hitting something with your car, but it being a wolf, and the wolf having  a puppy was a bit far fetched.    i actually have had some pretty bad expiriences with this though...   one time a bunny ran out in front of my car and i hit it. i could stop cause i was on the highway going 65 miles an hour, ... (more »)
 
TargonTheDragonThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Sep. 18 at 10:42 am :
*couldnt stop  
 
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WhenYouCantSleepAtNightThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Aug. 9 at 7:48 am:
This is really good. c:  
 
ROYCEPHUSThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sep. 17 at 11:40 pm :
thanks so much :D
 
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