Young Adult (18-35)
Note: Transcripts are generated using speech recognition software and may contain errors.
it started as a faint, far off cry so distant that for a moment they could pretend it was merely the wind, sending dead leaves curling and twisting through the playground. The howl grew louder, fiercer, splitting the night and to like a knife through a velvet curtain. There could be no mistake. It was the howl of a bully. It didn't come from nearby. It could be somewhere by the city or in the nearby hills. It was hard to tell exactly. Yet the sound sent a thrum of fear through them all. The howl was joined by a second closer now, and a third, the Woolley's were abroad and hunting to Nicholas. The eerie, ululating cries seemed full of a desperate, hot, sick loneliness, like inhabitants from the moon marooned on earth, crying out their sorrow at the banishment from home. Yet intertwined with that sorrow was a raw savagery that made the loneliness all the more disturbing. It was as though the Woolley's new they were alone and chose to expunge that knowledge in the mad rush to bite and rend and tear to Troy, the howling seemed full of sadness, as deep as the ocean and as treacherous, for one might venture into the depths, so placid and calm and on the surface to discover only too late. The hidden currents underneath, waiting to seize hold of unwary intruders, dragged them down to their doom. Two Amy they spoke of need, a vast unnameable need as dark and thick as hot blood. The animals for they were animals. She knew they were no longer people they had passed beyond that needed only one thing. They sought to kill her and her friends. That was all the howls began to seep together, forming a seemingly endless cacophony of dread, and Leah began to moan. Clutching her head, Amy said, coaxing Lee, It's okay. It's all right to Susie. The housing made her tremble with fright. She felt sick at the thought of going out and facing them. The fear hadn't dulled over time, had never lost its keen and cutting edge. In fact, it had only gotten worse. To Ryan, the howling was an insult, a stinging slap in the face aimed directly at him. It was the Woolley's saying, Come and face us if you dare. We're waiting. They didn't think he had it. They didn't think he was tough enough. Well, he'd show them he'd show them to Shania. The Howling was a release, a chance to vent her rage and pain. Her chance to strike back to Alex. The howling was part of the game because the aim of the game was to survive. The rules meant there had to be threats. Otherwise, how would you know when you'd one? Because in the end, you'd be the only one left, right? Shana said briskly. Let's get ready. She leaped up, and the others followed her Susie somewhat shakily. The net of light shrank as they took their torches with them. Leah continued to moan softly. Nicholas felt the urge to tell her to shut up. Then he felt a rush of guilt. It wasn't her fault. She was scared They all were. Don't worry, Troy said. You're safe here with us. We'll look after you, isn't that right? Right? Nicholas said thickly. Don't worry. You've got Teddy, haven't you? Amy asked gently. There Teddy will look after you. Leah squeezed her bare tightly. His button eyes winked in the thin torchlight. The howling went on and on, a whaling tied and as they listen to the cries seemed to come closer and closer, as if they were just outside the door to the hole, and the hole itself became larger, growing in size. So they sat in a vast black cavern surrounded on all sides by a cold, naked fury. The desolate, piercing howl of the Woolley's rose and fell, rose and fell. You could go mad listening to that. He thought they might not even come tonight, he said to himself, Once or twice, even when the moon was full, no, Woolley's had attacked at all. They just heard them somewhere far away the Children of the night, Troy murmured in a terrible mock Transylvanian accent.