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Defining Moments by eHPF
Format: Short story collection
Chapter 16: Fenrir Greyback: Ravenous
A cold Northern breeze washed over his face. A chilling dampness caressed his back. A hammering heartbeat pulsed through his body.
He awoke from sleep; his large body leaving an imprint in the grassy field where he passed out during the night.
He had no recollection of the last 12 hours, but the taste and smell of metal in his mouth, and the warm feeling in his stomach told him that it had been a good night.
Hunger (n): A compelling need or desire for food.
Ravenous (adj): Extremely hungry.
Fenrir Greyback came to the village of Sanford through the South entrance. Tucking his wand into the inside pocket of his coat, he trudged in, quickly mixing into the small crowd of people going about their daily lives.
Townsfolk flitted back in forth between shops, each person a succulent steak with a unique marinade. Fenrir’s mouth watered. It had been almost a week since he had eaten a real meal. He could only put it off for so much longer.
A tavern a few buildings down seemed to call to him. The sign on the door read: “Wolf’s Den Tavern.” Fenrir smiled at the irony. Certainly it was fate that he came across this particular pub.
He took a seat at the far end of the bar. The pub was full of sweaty, dirty, Muggle men. Their foul, collective odor wafted across the room, filling Fenrir’s nostrils. He grimaced in disgust. To him they smelled like raw meat gone rancid, and he would have nothing to do with such a disgusting menagerie of human filth.
A burly bartender took his order, placing a mug of beer in front of him. The smell of a fresh pint, and the tickling sensation of the foam pleasantly offset the disgusting mess that surrounded him, but it was short lived, for the pint was gone before his order of steak, extra rare, even arrived.
He ate his snack in peace, unwilling to gaze at the writhing mess of humanity. The mere thought of them made the smell come back. This wasn’t the first time he had been disgusted. Humans were all alike for the most part, vile, filthy creatures; living pathetic, meaningless lives. Each day a monotonous repeat of the last. The already repressed hungering for adventure appeased by television, sex, and drugs. Years of nothingness had dulled their senses to the point where they couldn’t smell their own wasted lives, or hear the cries of their inner animal, a far more noble creature, begging to be released, to live life the way it was meant to live; the way Fenrir lived his.
His hunger stayed for the moment, Fenrir paid his tab and walked out the door. This town was no different than the last; just another mindless fast-food restaurant where the food was quick, easy, and completely unsatisfying.
This disappointment was even greater than the last. The town of Sanford was supposed to be a great place. Magazines labeled it as a “Great place to raise a family.” If Jesus, blue-collar monotony, and fish and chips every Friday night with the guys equated to a stellar upbringing, then it was no wonder the world was going to hell. Sanford wasn’t real. The people there weren’t real. They were filler, mixed with spare parts, and an extra layer of grease and fat to hide the rubbery flavor. Was every town like this? Would Fenrir have to travel all the way to Hogsmeade, where magic and mystery intertwined and cultivated the minds, to get a decent meal?
As he exited through the Northeast entrance, a sugary smell cut through the fog, and filled his nostrils. A burning hunger began to grow in the bottom of his stomach. The smell was familiar, but had its own unique flavor. Fenrir’s mouth watered as the source of the delectable smell approached. A mother and child were walking along the path, headed back towards town. The mother smelled of Sanford. She was as rotten and unappealing as her kinsfolk. But the child…
The little boy ran off the road towards a small pond. His actions greeted by heavy, loud calls of discontent from the mother. She was wasting no time in ruining her son. The boy had seen a frog, and his mind was focused on one thing only. Catching it. He didn’t know why he wanted to catch it. He certainly hadn’t thought about what he was going to do after he caught it. But he was going to do it anyway. The boy dived, arms outstretched. The frog hopped into the air, but the boy’s reflexes were sharp, and he got him. Too bad he was a Muggle, he could have been a great seeker.
The boy landed in the mud, getting it all over his clothing. The mother walked over and picked the boy up, scolding him loudly. Already Fenrir could smell the meat beginning to spoil… and he was so hungry.
The full moon was weeks away. Fenrir would not be able to wait much longer. The child saw Fenrir and waved to him.
Fenrir tried to waive back, but the pain of hunger made it difficult to move his arm. He felt drool trickling out of the corner of his mouth. He was so hungry…