Chapter 17 - The Appetite
He wakes with a start, it is the same every month, its colder but yet another day where he has no clothes, the hay around him just giving him enough insulation that he doesn't freeze to death. "Not that he could even freeze to death.", his blurry thoughts questioning his own mortality.
It's a barn he is in but not where he wanted to be. The last he could remember, he was in a musky old abandoned cabin just outside of a town, Pennbrooke. His thoughts were slowly returning to him. Looking around, he could see the barn was in total disrepair, most likely abandoned. It once housed farm equipment of that he was certain. Though musty, the air didn't carry the dank smell of sweaty horses, the pungent smell of pigs nor the putrid smell of cows. Light was shining through cracks in the walls, a setting sun he knew, an instinct that has grown within him over the years and decades.
Rolling over he gets to his knees, a wrenching pain shoots from his gut radiating out to all extremities, the usual consequence or side effect of his affliction. Nausea over takes him, the body wracking convulsions of his dry heaving sapping every bit of strength that he has, his head hangs to the ground between his knees, the dirty blond tuft of hair entwining with the straw that lay around him. It would pass though seemingly taking hours to do so, the throbbing of the migraine headache, the aching bones and muscle would slowly subside and return the sense of normality, he knew that and let the disease take its course. This has become his normal, a normal that is nothing like it had once been. He has become, no acquired, a body that otherwise never gets sick, is much stronger than that of two fully grown men and all of his senses as good as any one might find in nature.
The throbbing of his head and the aching body slowly dissolves to nothing. Getting to his feet he takes stock of his situation. That night fall is soon upon him he is certain. Walking outside of the barn he can see nothing but trees and brush from which wide fields can be seen through the thinning leaves.
Though there are no other buildings in the area he has the vision of a gas station in his head and it is nearby, something similar to a De-javu. His head reals and more visions follow accompanied by feelings. The body of a woman is before him, no more than at arm's length, a pale bare supple shoulder half revealed to his hungering eyes. The heat of her body, he can feel her even now, naked he is in the chilly evening breeze, it is as though she were right here in front of him. His body stiffens and his head rolls back such that it would seem that he is looking up into the evening sky but for his shut eyes. He senses that he has entered her, his manhood displacing her flesh like a boats oar might part water, a warmth stirs in his groin at the sight and feeling coursing through him, his hand slips to his manhood. The vision is cut short at the touch, the palm of his hand and his fingers encountering a crusty substance on and around his genitals. One look in the afternoon light, and he knew what that touch meant. It was his last victim, the one that he had ravaged both mentally and physically. He can still hear her screams ringing in his ears, the taste of her soft skin and the warm, wet feeling of her internal flesh tearing as he raped that which had so tantalized his every sense.
He knew who she was, he had seen her at the grocery store not four days ago, dressed in a light dress, walking that black top as if she were a model on stage, her swaying hips beckoning all to watch. He could smell everything of and about her; that she was ripe for the taking, on the wind, her pheromones playing with his mind as that of deer might with a buck in rut. It was broad daylight, there were many people in the area, it wasn't his time, the time when he would be at full strength. He would have her and he knew it, whether he tried to will himself from the thought or not. He also knew that she would not survive his lust and that she lay dead in the woods near that school that he had once followed her to.
She would be found, all of his victims have been, and it will be broadcast on the news where everyone will be talking about it for weeks or even months to come. The fact that he has not been caught enters his mind. Are the police really that stupid that they cannot find him? Sure, even on those nights where he is no longer himself he takes care to not leave tracks that might give him away and when 'human' he stays away from crowds and travels always out of sight. Still, it baffles him but only for a short instant. These three days belong to him and there is no one on this Earth that can stop him.
Re-entering the barn through the large door that is just slit open enough for him to pass, he searches for something that might be deemed clothing or improvised as such. All of his belongings are gone and there is no reason to search for anything more appropriate, not that he expects to find anything as usual, since he still has two nights of full moon from which he has no control, there is only the need to keep the chill from his body. He finds a couple of old potato sacks, rough woven and airy but enough for the couple of hours he has left.
Outside, the suns last rays are warming him. The change won't take him till the moon raises to nearly its zenith but still, the sight of it low on the horizon, big and white stirs him. He can feel the thousand ant bites at his skin, his hair follicles undulating as they warm up, getting ready to grow that massive amount of hair that will cover his body. His surroundings have already taken on a light violet halo, a sign that his pupils are dilating and his nerve endings sharping to catch the silhouettes in the night. He can now smell autumn's degeneration of the foliage around him as if he were standing over a compost pen, its pungent smell of decay filling his nose. He breathes deep, freedom and life's energy filling every molecule of his being, much like a rebirth, he revels in it, a smile broadening across his face, born of ecstasy and almost sinister at once.
It is a scent that distracts him, a smell that would grab his attention on any day at any time. The smell of a bitch in heat, a woman whose cunt just reeks of the lust to fuck as her vaginal fluids has unquestionably wet the panties that constrain those luscious lips. She is clean, there is no touch of disease to taint that sweet smell that must spew from between her legs as a cloud might skate along the evening sky. Like a dog on a leash he is drawn out into the open towards that smell, drawn such that he is soon pulling at that chain that restrains him so that he might see that which summons him.
The gas station grows from the ground as he nears it. Night has come and the stars are staring down upon him as he edges to the sign at the edge of the field that would mark the property of the gas station. There are a few men present and few women as well, he knows this without a doubt but none of those persons are to be seen.
As with the onset of a Tornado so it was with his disease, the hair began to push, the bones to stretch and all with such fury and pain that it was all he could do to muffle his cries, his last thought before ramming his face into the soft grass covered ground before him as that ancient evil had its way, was of not being able to see that which has so attracted him to this building.