The Elf extends his hand toward the bowl of strange ointment and dips the fingers of his right hand into it. The total absence of warmth or cold tells him that the ointment is the same temperature as his body. Under normal circumstances, this might seem strange to him, but in this place, "strange" seems to be the norm. He pulls his hand out and regards it curiously.

He immersed only his fingers, but notices that the ointment spreads all by itself -- it now covers his hand to the wrist and flows up his forearm. Everywhere it touchs, nerves activate, sending exhilarating tingles through him. He also sees that, as it spreads, it thins out and the sensations fade. Whatever the ointment is meant to do, dipping only his fingers will not allow it to happen.

He's suddenly aware of the Beast again. It's still where he left it -- in the forefront of his conscious mind, no longer buried. And with the ointment on his skin, he sees the Beast more clearly; but now that extra clarity recedes from his mind as the ointment dries.

The Elf goes again to the ointment, this time immersing his entire right hand before pulling away. Now the sensations are stronger, emanating from his creamed hand and quickly spreading to his entire body. The Elf shudders with an obscure pleasure. His eyes roll up to his forehead ... the Beast lifts its head and snarls. The ointment quickly spreads up his right arm, toward the shoulder ... and dissipates. The feeling recedes and the Beast goes quiet.

His mind's eye abruptly shifts to The Dream again, the one that always leaves him right as it gets to the point, tantalizes him with a secret just beyond his conscious grasp as he wakes from it -- he, the Hunter, pursuing the Prey through the deep woods, the trees flying past him as he runs (flies?) on limbs he can't have. But now, as the ointment works on him, he perceives the dream clearly, the parts that were always a mere hint now in stark relief...

...he is the Wolf. His unnatural speed comes from four legs, not two. His front legs hit the ground, pull him forward, leave the ground; hind legs hit the ground, push him forward, leave the ground; front legs again; then the hind legs ... pull ...push. Pull-push-pull-push ... da da DUM da da DUM da da DUM. The coordination perfect, propelling him along with a velocity that no biped can match.

And his incredible sense of smell? A wolven snout, with hypersensitive nose, out in front of him as he runs, leading him on, homing in unerringly on the scent of the Prey fleeing him up ahead. He smells it again, clearer than ever before -- its perspiration, the earth it kicks up as it flees, the shit from vented bowels and, above all, the wonderfully intoxicating scent of its Mortal Fear.

Although he can't yet see it, he knows it's a deer and a big one. Then, as he rounds a bend, it shimmers into view. Not just any deer -- the White Stag! And he's not hunting it alone; others like him run on either side, containing the prey, preventing escape.

Saliva drips from his panting maw as he closes the last distance, clamps his my-what-big-teeth-I-have jaw on the underside of its neck, bites down for all he's worth and and shakes. The blood of the White Stag drenches his face and, as he eagerly gulps it down, he feels ecstasy that is purer and infinitely more pleasurable than anything he's ever experienced. And then the Elf...

...snaps out of it. He's back in the clearing, the bowl of strange ointment before him, the ointment on his skin almost gone, without completing its work.

No.

I'll not be denied.

I choose this.

My destiny.

The Elf strips off his tunic ... plunges both hands into the ointment ... splashes two handfuls of it onto his bare chest. The Beast stands and howls its pleasure.

Fear grips him. Fear that it won't be enough. He takes hold of the bowl itself, lifts it high above his head ... and turns it over.

And as the entire contents of the bow splash onto his upturned face, saturate his long, blond hair, run down his back and chest, spread and envelop his whole body and as the Beast ROARS --

-- the Elf shouts his allegiance to the Spirit of the Wolf.

The Ointment

Original post to Darkwind’s Garou Board as "Wolf Tales (3)" 26 April 2003

Revised 15 May 2019