Chapter 10 - Wolf

There was little along the riverbanks. I scoured every inch stopping regularly at any sign of life. I even stopped to find I was chasing a squirrel which I could never catch. Listening closely, I heard the howling and yipping of wolves or maybe wild dogs in the distance. Just as the river became so rough that my raft was beginning to break apart, on the side of the bank I spotted a moose carcass, its entrails torn out partially. I was in luck. I could dry some of the meat and eat it before it rotted, the carcass looked so fresh it could be warm. I pushed my raft to the shore and approached the carcass tenativley.

Placing my palm on its neck, I felt indeed the carcass was still warm. Looking around for the same type of rock I had fashioned the first makeshift knife blade from, I found one. The black rock chipped easily, but chipped to a sharp edge I could use to cut. I began to cut along the belly of the carcass just as I had cut open the rabbit, finishing my cut along the hind leg. Suddenly i heard a growling noise behind me. I hadn't even heard anything approaching. I looked back with terror, only to see there was a lone gray wolf behind me, crouched on its front legs and growling.

Suddenly the wolf sprung up, and I dived for the ground by the carcass, covering my head with my hands. The wolf bit my neck hard, but not hard enough to draw blood, picking me up and flinging me across the rocks. Growling and crouching closer to me on its front legs once again, I watched the wolfs legs approach closer and closer to me. I whimpered and began to cry, as I could feel a great bruise building up in my neck. My neck wasn't broken, but the bite was very painful.

I winced and whimpered again as the wolf growled crouching over me, and suddenly, as I closed my eyes, the wolf began to whimper as well. He started to lick my neck where he had bitten me and made a sort of whimpering, growling sound almost like a dog. I wondered if this could be a dog, simply a wild one, or maybe a mix of dog and wolf that had escaped into the wild. It looked like a wolf, with long gray hair, black along its back. It was slender and lean, as if this had been its first kill in a while.

As I cowered on the rocks, the wolf began to retreat, biting at the carcass where I had cut it open and tearing. I laid as still as I could for as long as I could. The wolf was still eating from the carcass. As I got up, the wolf let out a growl and I cowered again. Slowly, I made my way over to the carcass knowing it was my only hope left. There was no way I could travel much further on the river and there was no way I could walk to saftey without any food at all. So I retreated to the back end of the carcass, once again picking up the stone blade I had dropped. The wolf looked at me and I was careful to look away, whimpering almost silently. Making a gruff yipping noise, the wolf walked to the river and begin to drink the silty water.

Slowly and carefully, I began to cut pieces of the carcass off for myself and gnaw at them. Growling at me, the wolf crouched down like he was ready to spring. So I pulled a large chink of meat to the carcass and set it in front of me. Holding as still as I could, I silently watched the wolf retrieve the meat and eat it. It was much easier for the wolf to eat the carcass as I cut off pieces for him. My neck still hurt incredibly badly, but I almost felt I had made a new friend. Filling my stomach, I once again began to assemble a small shelter by a tree. I would dry as much of the meat as I could and carry it with me to safety across the mountains to the park.

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