Status: Will be updated once to twice a week, until I catch up to what I have written.

The Quest

Chapter Four - The Wilkolak

Tess woke up to the bedside alarm blaring in her ear. She rolled over, groaning as she turned it off. She closed her eyes and turned back over, only for the curtains to whoosh open, to her dismay. “Rise and shine!” Tom grinned as she glared blearily at him. “I thought you wanted to go on an adventure,” he teased as he went to get ready for the day.

“Adventure can start after lunch,” Tess muttered to herself as she pulled the sheets over her head. She heard Tom in the bathroom, brushing his teeth. He had most likely already eaten breakfast.

“If you wouldn’t stay up so late doing rituals…” Tom trailed off as he reentered the room.

“New moon, new me,” Tess mumbled, peeking out from under the sheets. She watched as his ears flicked around, taking in the sounds of the hotel. Probably answering trivia in his head from the TV two rooms down too, she thought, annoyed to herself.

“Hm, new you?” Tom walked over to her and poked her side. “Should it be a healthier you? We can start with actually eating breakfast.”

“I’m not hungry.” Tess pushed his hand away, snuggling deeper into the covers, closing her eyes once again.

Tom shook his head, sighing. “Well, I guess I could go back to the library while I wait for you to get ready.”

Tess jumped out of bed, throwing the sheets onto the floor after she untangled herself. “Give me five minutes,” she rushed to the bathroom to brush her hair.

Tom chuckled as he heard her rushing around the tiny room, cursing when she’d drop something. Probably the straightener she insisted on using. “Ready!” She called as she skidded out of the bathroom.

“Did you want to change at all?” Tom asked, looking her up and down. She had gone to bed in the clothes she had worn the day before. Which comprised a black shirt, jeans and some socks. The only thing that looked refreshed was her hair, which she had brushed and straightened. He glanced at her arm to see a new burn, probably from dropping the iron once again. What a klutz. He chuckled at the thought.

“I’ll be fine, let’s go,” she flung the hotel door open to see the hotel manager, making her stop short. Tom lost his smile as he looked past the manager to see a few staff behind him, along with the sheriff.

“Can we help you?” Tom asked, scenarios rushing through his head. He couldn’t think of a single reason they would get kicked out. He had paid for the room himself when they had arrived.

“We apologize,” the hotel manager started, fumbling with the papers in their hands. “But we need to ask that you pack your things.”

“Why?” Tom asked, his tail stopped wagging, while his ears started folding back. This took him by surprise just as much as it did Tess.

“We apologize, but we’ll be needing your room.” The hotel manager licked his lips, handing the papers to Tom.

Tom took the papers, then began reading them. A few seconds passed as Tess watched his mood go from irritated to completely irate. “We’re being kicked out because you ‘believe’ one of us is a witch?” The veins in Tom’s arms bulged, making Tess nervous. While Tom drew strength from the full moon, he could also force a transformation if he got mad enough. It always worried Tess when he forced a transformation, because it took so much out of him once he was done.

“Tom,” Tess grabbed his arm to calm him down. She looked towards the hotel manager, who was looking nervous. “I don’t know why you think one of us is a witch. I’m an herbalist that knows a few tricks.” Tess gestured to her basket of herbs and jars.

“I-I’m terribly sorry,” the hotel manager began again, before the sheriff shoved her way forward.
“You need to leave now. There is an angry mob coming to the hotel. They claim that there is a witch that controls stars staying here,” the sheriff explained. She looked tired. She had been up most of the night listening to the townspeople and travelers' complaints.

Tess put a hand to her mouth as the realization came to her. “But that’s not an actual star. My father gave that to me.” Tears formed in her eyes as she tried to think of a solution that would get them out of the hotel. She was so deep in thought it shocked her when Tom transformed next to her.

“A Wilkolak,” the hotel manager whispered in awe. He stared at the hulking black wolf standing in front of him.

Tess grabbed a hold of Tom’s thick fur as he let out a blood-curdling howl. The people in the hallway collapsed to the ground in fear. Tom bounded over the fallen people, then ran out of the hotel. Tess closed her eyes and pressed her face into Tom’s back as the scenery rushed by them.
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