A Wolf in The Garden
This all began last Thursday. Evelyn had a small office nestled high in the old tower. Every night after supper, she would climb the stairs, sit at a little wooden chair, and with a glass of wine continue her work. She had just dipped her pen in the inkwell when she heard a chilling howl from outside. Not paying it any mind, she tapped the nib on the edge of the inkwell and pressed it to the paper. The howl came again, louder. She looked back, only one of their dogs had ever bothered to howl and it was laying on a rug fast asleep. Again she put pen to paper when the howl returned, echoing through the staircase. She dropped the pen, ink splattering across the paper, and ran down the stairs.
The grounds were empty. Her eyes darted between the hedges, the yews, the orchard. Nothing but the brisk rustling of leaves. She made her way back up to her desk, the dog still asleep on the rug. She finished a few notes before heading down, now with a flashlight and the dog in tow. The wind had died down and flecks of rain began to sprinkle her face. Out in the corner of the garden she noticed something dart across the lawn, the dog grumbled as she aimed her light. Two gold eyes flashed for an instant only to fade into the distance. A wolf.
By Monday, she decided the creature was gone and made her way back up the tower. Before she got to the first step, she saw it, racing through the hedges. Evelyn ran back to the main house where her husband was sitting in the library.
“Now dear, there haven’t been wolves here since the fourteenth century.”
“I know what I heard.” Evelyn said, pulling a box from the gun cabinet.
“It’s probably some lost hound in the woods. You know that’s only bird-shot you’ve got there.”
She took a shotgun from the display case, “Just enough to scare it off.”
“Only thing you’ll scare is the groundskeeper at this hour.”
She slid the shells into her pocket, kissing him on the forehead, “I’ll be fine”.
Weapon at her side, Evelyn wandered out to the gardens. She aimed her flashlight at the trees, gun resting on her arm. “Alright, come out.” The howl returned, eyes reflected in the light for a second before the batteries died. She raised the gun and aimed. The wolf stepped towards her; its eyes locked onto hers unable to look away. It was grey, thin, and in the darkness appeared like a mist rather than a creature. One quick snap and the wolf ripped the gun from her hands, sinking its teeth into the lapel of her coat. She screamed, grabbing the wolf’s neck; her fingers passed through. The mist of the wolf turned to smoke and washed away in the wind. Her coat shredded, her pink scarf torn, the dog crazed. But she was unharmed.