|The BigMoon-time always makes Wiley feel as if he's gone rabid.
Shelter or none, he feels the Change in his marrow. Burning and tingling, his bones flow into different, awkward shapes, until even his scent is radically altered.
The others haven't guessed about Wiley's Change. Hell of it is, Wiley can't tell them, either. Were such insanity to be believed, it would mean his death.
So, every Sun-downing--during the time of the BigMoon--Wiley finds a cave far from his home and his family. At MoonRise, his bones begin to flow and Wiley's mind has already begun the switch to that other. To the other ways, to the other language--
To the other-being that waits behind his day-face and longs to run with the Moon.
When the other-being comes out, Wiley is gone. He is with the Moon. . . .
At MoonSetting, he is two minds in one reverse-flowing body, the evening's memories fresh within him. But with the coming of the enemy Sun, the strange sense of otherness slips away, along with the smooth, new skin of the Change. He coarsens, sprouting thick hair and sharp, dark nails. His bones shorten and bend, forcing him to drop to all fours. His opposable thumbs--marvelous things--become part of his paws.
He . . . has paws again. . . .
His hearing, scent, eyesight and Earth-sense sharpen.
His hackles raise and he howls to SkyAbove for the lost splendor of the night. He means to scream FUCK! . . . but it always comes out as BARK!
The disappointment, though deep, is fleeting. His mind is filled with duties and the Hunt. His nose is filled with the scent of Pack, and mates, and children.
The scent of home.
That other is forgotten, until the next full Moon. For now, there is only home and the Hunt.
But when next the BigMoon comes, he will go with it. To his otherself.
Wrinkling his muzzle in a wolfish sort of shrug, the Werehuman steps out of his some-time sanctuary and rejoins his pack.