Wolves at the Door (part 56)

“A chicken? I killed a chicken?”

“Not just a chicken. My best chicken.”

The man expected Gil to show remorse, but that was difficult when all he felt was a flood of relief. As most of the guilt lifted from him, he began to think of his own situation. Relief would not get him out of these ropes, but contrition might.

“I’m so sorry. Is there any way I could make it up to you?”

Gil’s jailer looked him over.

“Seems to me, you don’t have a lot to offer. And if you do, I don’t want to know where you’re keeping it.”

“Perhaps I could do some work for you.”

“Could be that’s what you’ll end up doing. I can always use another thrall. But it’s not for me to decide. The community will have its say. You might be a danger to the whole town. After all, today it’s our chickens. Tomorrow it could be our sheep. Next week, our children. Who knows?”

Gil was horrified.

“I wouldn’t…”

But he had to stop there. He wouldn’t what? Drag away a human being to eat? Just a moment ago, that’s exactly what he thought he had done. The truth was, he had no idea what he might do when the moon was high and full.

“Besides which, I know I was real lucky to catch you sleeping. You may look like a boy, but you’re a mighty dangerous beast. If you get out of those ropes we might not be able to catch you again. So I don’t think we’ll be taking any chances.

The man watched Gil closely as he tried to find a way to get comfortable, or as comfortable as he could with his hands tied behind him like that. It seemed he would have a long wait ahead of him.


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