Dylan reflexively reached out to banish the bloody ear from his sight with a flush of the toilet. His hand was arrested in mid-air, by the realization that he recognized the earring still adorning the tiny lobe. His neighbor Rhonda had a pair of ladybug earrings just like that, which she wore all of the time. So, was that her ear? He shook his head in dawning horror. No…it couldn’t be…please don’t let it be hers! Dylan was nearly bowled over by a sudden flashback of her terrified face.
It was starting to come back to him. Dylan’s strongest recollection was of standing at the window and being distracted from watching the police leave by the mesmerizing sight of the full moon. It had pulled his gaze up to it. Looking directly into its bright face hurt his eyes, yet Dylan could not look away. A strange sort of intoxication had slowly overtaken him. He felt lightheaded and the next thing he recalled was convulsing on the floor. His last coherent thought was that he was having a seizure.
As his muscles spasmed, a prickly sensation spread over Dylan’s entire body. It felt like countless goosebumps breaking out all at the same time. He looked down at his arms and saw thousands of hairs sprouting, pushing up through his skin like blades of grass emerging from soil. So much hair sprouted that his clothes grew uncomfortably tight. Pain stabbed his jaw. His hand reflexively went up to his mouth and felt his jawline elongating into a muzzle. Dylan felt himself hyperventilating and abruptly pushed the traumatizing memories to the back of his mind.
He felt as though he was losing his mind. None of that could have happened. It made no logical sense. People didn’t turn into animals. Even if it was possible, he was a grown man. Nothing like that had ever happened to him before. Why would he suddenly…his mind served up the memory of Rosa’s dying words: “I curse you Dylan Maxwell. From now until the end of your days, you will become the wolf in sheep’s clothing you always were, every time the moon is full.”