Another Wednesday and I actually have new words! Yay. Today’s #1lineWed theme is a non-theme. The prompt is **FREE-FOR-ALL** which basically means there’s no theme. I decided to take last week’s **PINK** prompt and carry on with that scene, in case anyone is curious as to what happened. There’s still more questions than answers but that’s what makes a good suspense, right? You should recognize the first two paragraphs as the end of last week’s snippet. To refresh your memories: Jack, Justice, and Brooke (FIGHTING FOR JUSTICE) are taking a Christmas break in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Brooke has gone out on a solitary hike and comes across a wolf caught in a trap.
“Don’t get snarly with me. And I should warn you, when I said Uncle Jack is special? I mean that he’s about three times your scrawny size when he shifts so I wouldn’t be giving him any shit.”
“Language, young lady,” Aunt Jussie corrected over Uncle Jack’s chuckle. Brooke had been so focused on the wolf, she hadn’t heard them coming.
Justice cautiously approached the wolf but Jack caught her arm and held her in place. Their eyes collided in a moment of understanding. Jack crouched, staying about six feet away. Justice stood quietly behind him. Brooke stayed back, reminding herself to breathe.
“Got’cherself in quite a fix there, young’un.” Jack studied the trap, anger radiating from him though his voice remained calm. It had been placed close to this path intentionally and could have caught any unsuspecting hiker. Justice. Brooke. And this wolf pup. “You’re hurt,” Jack continued, as he stood and moved a few steps closer. “And pissed.”
The wolf snarled.
Jack shook his head. “That’s not the way this goes, pup. We can do it easy or we can do it hard. Your choice.”
The wolf’s muzzle remained curled but he pricked an ear toward Jack.
“Easy is, I come over there, pry that damn think off your leg and carry you down the mountain so my mate can fix you up.” He waited for a reaction. When the wolf offered none, he continued. “Hard is, I take you down, my mate struggles to get the trap off and I drag yore sorry ass down the mountain, put you in a muzzle, and then my mate fixes you. Your choice.”
Brooke almost giggled at the indignant look on the wolf’s face, but she sobered when the hair prickled on the back of her neck and her arms, despite her sweater and coat. Uncle Jack was doing his alpha woo-woo stuff. The wolf whined and pawed at his nose. She almost felt sorry for him.
The wolf lowered his head and very carefully rolled to his side, not quite belly up.
“There might be hope for you yet, young’un,” Jack said quietly.
Holding out her hand, Justice ordered, “Give me your scarf, Brooke.”
She might have argued but she realized her aunt would need it for a possible tourniquet and a bandage at the very least. Brooke whipped it off and passed it over.
Justice knelt on the opposite side of Jack and spoke to the wolf. “It’s going to hurt worse when Jack relieves the pressure on your leg. I’m going to have to touch it to wrap it up. That will prevent further injury and cut back on the blood loss. Okay?” She smiled, her gaze focused on the wolf’s as she asserted her own form of alphaness. “I’m a paramedic on top of being a wildlife rehabilitator. I can’t promise not to hurt you, but I will promise I’ll be as gentle as I can. Deal?”
The wolf, wary of Jack’s narrowed gaze, carefully stretched his muzzle and nosed Justice’s boot.
Jack studied the trap, looking for the spring mechanism. He could pry it open by force but that would likely cause more damage. He finally located what he searched for and said, “Here we go.” He didn’t give the wolf time to even blink. He sprang the steel jaws of the trap, lifted it away from the mangled flesh and jerked its anchor out of the ground. His eyes flashed red as his wolf rose to the surface.
Justice went to work immediately. She wrapped Brooke’s scarf around the wound then used two short branches to brace the leg before continuing to wrap the scarf around the wolf’s leg to secure it.
Brooke’s heart broke a little as the wolf whimpered. When Justice was done, Jack squatted, gathered the injured wolf gently into his arms and stood as Justice stabilized the leg.
“Little darlin’, can you carry that trap down?” Jack asked.
Brooke eyed the thing, disgust evident in her expression. She nudged it with her boot toe then bent and hefted it. “Ugh. Heavy, but yeah. I can get it down the mountain.”
And there it is. Nothing special but words are words. It’s moving forward with the story. I’m behind on my goal but I’ll take any progress I can get. Writers, have any words to share? Readers, how do you feel about snippets? 👍🏼 or 👎🏼 ?