They came knocking at the door one night and stole me away from my dreams. They howled and they snarled, but they wanted me and they took me to their den. It smelled musty-dank like wet rotting leaves and was dark with lots of sticks. Looking out the front door of the den I could see the night sky, stars twinkling in the dark through the trees. I could see the elders in the shadows. They were protecting me, hiding me, keeping me from the dangers of the world. I knew that these wolves were not people. I knew in my small mind that I had been stolen. It did not occur to me to cry out for help. To hope that someone would follow me. I knew they wouldn’t. I knew they wouldn’t even realize that I was gone for a very long time.
I slept. I dreamt. I was firstborn in my clan and I dreamt that my life would be life as a princess in a fairy castle. I dreamt of one of my past lives. The one where I lived in the court of France. The one where I was a bougie courtiere, where I had no compassion, where I was inhuman. Where I was a wolf of another sort.
I wake in the mornings with kinks in my neck, swearing French mal mots until I realize where I am. No pillows, no comforts, not in this lifetime. I would go with the wolves, my pack. We walked in single file with me in the middle for protection. We searched, we walked just to walk, and when we were hungry, we ate. We found small prey. We ripped it open, smelled its blood. We shared bits and went walking again. We walked until night fell. We found a pool and drank. Then we looked to the sky and sang. These new wolves were teaching me – about cycles, about reality, about life. I learned all of my social skills from these wolves. They taught me about posession, they taught me about survival. They taught me how to fight and howl with rage. They taught me all I needed to know to get by in this world. They taught me how to survive.
They also taught me that wolves mate for life.