Raven Wolf

The Wilds

Chapter One

'The end of the world' that's what the people back then called it when it was all happening. The oceans rose, the land disappeared, the sun became a danger that burned everything that it saw, and every day brought a new storm. Life was a difficult and constant struggle, the things that people had learned over the years to take for granted became scarce and many lives were lost.

Then, just when the struggling masses didn't think things could get any worse, the ten thousand year ice storm came up the land and froze everything. Treasured resources became even more scarce, and constant fighting over the little that was left tore the survivors apart. Even more lives were lost, and common sense dangled by a very thin thread.

The hardships that had destroyed everything from what it once was did not last forever. After a long time the snow and ice finally gave way, and new lands rose from the waters, new life came to the world and the people that had managed to survive through the hardships the carelessness of their ancestors had caused were given the chance to live again.

The new land though a blessing compared to the scorching sun, storms and ice that came before it, was still different from the times of human prosperity, the world though more fruitful was still harsh and primitive, and the people could not so drastically change the land to suit their needs as what had been done in the past, as that is what had caused the world to end. Instead it was the people who would have to change in order to suit the land's needs.

The great animal spirits that governed over nature and guided mankind became concerned of man's plight, and offered to help man. They told man that they had lost respect for the land, nature and all living things, which is why they could no longer live so easily upon it. If they wished to survive man must become beasts and live in the way that nature told them to. If they could do this task they would survive and prosper once more.

Not all accepted the idea, there were some that turned the spirits offers down in the belief that man was and always should be above beasts. All others, who were willing to renounce their wrongs and live out the roll nature would give them, accepted the animal spirits offer, and man became beast, growing tail and fang and becoming as primitive as the new land.

Though most of humanity had become beasts and lived with nature and as it told them to they could not forget what it was that they once were. Many longed for the easy and conventional lives that their ancestors before them had, for the progress that made their minds more than that of an animals, for an existence grater then just that their roll in nature's circle of life could give them. Those who thought this way soon began to act on these ideologies, and as a result did not remain within the wilds for long.

Cities were built, and before long everything that existed long ago again existed, and life once again became comfortable. Just as comfortable in fact as the world had been before it had come to its unfortunate end. This of course raising concerns, people were not so neglectful to forget what had happened to them the last time their race was lucky enough to live like this, many began to wonder, 'Was the world again about to meet its end?'

The loud sound of gunshots can be heard from inside the walls of a large city, the sound breaking through the dark night and waking anyone that could hear them from their sleep.

Many creatures in uniform shield themselves behind walls and rubble to keep from being hit by bullets, a large jackal that commanded them issuing his orders as a truck delivering a fresh batch of soldiers skids to a stop and begins to unload near him. "Do not kill subject 1502! Just keep him from leaving the city! That is your priority!"

The soldiers quickly take their positions and begin to fire at the targets, one of the men letting out a yelp when he is hit with a bullet from the opposing side, their commanding officer looking at the wound in both shock and disgust. "How are they managing to hit us?"

A skunk dressed in a military uniform that almost always was seen by the general's side, looks up to his commander as he begins to explain the situation. "Conner is acting out, that's really the only explanation for it."

Across from the army's rang of fire among the small group that the bullets are all being aimed at, a grey wolf reloads the handgun that he had just emptied, he glancing back at all the people he was right now facing, this situation impossible for him to deal with on his own. He takes a second gun from his side handing it to a female fox who is right now cowering behind a broken wall, her hands over her head as bullets pelted the wall she hid behind, the grey wolf speaking up to get her attention as he held the weapon for her to take. "Help me out here! You want to get out of this alive don't you!"

The fox looks toward the weapon that was right now being handed to her, an even more horrified look filling her face. "I don't know how to use a gun!"

The grey wolf glances over the broken wall that the two of them are right now hiding behind, making sure the enemy was still keeping their position and not moving towards them. "How could you not know how to use a gun? You're a member of the government military aren't you?"

The fox holds her hand to herself as she begins to explain. "I'm a scientist that works for the military! I'm not a soldier like you!" She screams as shots are fired and bullets begin to chip away at the wall the two of them are hiding behind. "This is crazy! What am I doing here anyway!"

The grey wolf looks back to her after firing several shots at the people that attacked them, and then ducking back down behind the wall. "We're attempting to outrun the military and get out of the city, you know… just though I would bring it up again since you've forgotten, now are you going to give me a hand or not?"

The female fox reluctantly picks up the gun, as horrified as she was with the situation she wasn't about to let herself get killed. "I don't even know how to begin using this thing! How did things end up this way anyway!"

The grey wolf places his arm upon her shoulder as he quickly pushes her along with him when there is a break in the gunfire, they two of them quickly running to the other side of the broken wall where a black wolf sat crouched on the ground, his whole body shaking in fear, the grey wolf getting his attention by patting him on the back, making the black wolf open his eyes and jump back with a start. "Time to start moving Yula."

The fox silently stares into the white eyes of the black wolf her companion talked to. "Yula… this is what this is all about… all this fighting and bloodshed is because of him…"

Yula nods his head as he gets to his feet the two of them beginning to run as fast as they could through the buildings of the city they were in, trying to find a way to escape both it and their pursuers.

"My life used to be normal… how could it have possibly come to this!" Up until two weeks ago everything was so normal for her that life was mundane, what she wouldn't give to return to that right now. To be woken by that stupid alarm clock she hated, go to that dumb job that drove her up the wall, heck to even have to endure another pot of Fitz's horribly strong coffee was sounding nice right about now.

Two Weeks Earlier

An old alarm clock with quiet possibly the most annoying ring you could imagine goes off, waking a figure sleeping in the bed an arm's length from clock, an annoyed moan filling the air as the sleeping figure slowly begins to push herself out of bed, switching the alarm off and letting out a long yawn as the fox stretches out her arms and tail.

She grumbles to herself as she pulls her body out of bed, heading towards the bathroom for a morning shower to help wake her. "Come on Eve, you know what to do by now, today's the same old day as every single one before it." Eve knew the schedule by now, wake up, take a shower, eat breakfast, go down and help her father open up his museum, start her shift and work maintaining the family business until the end of her shift, which gave her just enough time for a quick lunch before she took off and headed towards her real job.

Eve, though already old enough and well off enough to live on her own, lived with her father in the museum he and his family had owned since… well, since the building was built. Though at one time a successful and treasured monument the museum was now nothing more than an old building, history was not a huge attraction to the young or old and the museum was not only always short customers, but workers as well, so Eve took it upon herself to help her father out with his business, filling in for whatever job they happened to be short of. For the last few weeks that job had been as a museum guide for when the school groups came over.

Eve locks the door to her living quarters within the museum after finishing her shower and breakfast, she passing buy several other rooms that were similar to hers and running over to the elevator that would take her down to the lower levels where the actual museum exhibits were.

Eve was not the only person that lived here in her father's museum, there was of course her Father, who was a hardworking and kind man who in his youth played the role of a treasure hunter and grave robber, helping to fill the museum with all kinds of interesting artefacts. Eve's older sister Gracie also lived there, and that was no understatement, Gracie hardly ever left the museum let alone her living quarters, and not because she was lazy or didn't like people, but because she was always getting sick and was forced to spend most of her time in bed unable to do anything.

The elevator comes to a stop on the main floor, the doors opening and greeting Eve with the strong scent of coffee… and not the nice smell you want to wake up to, the over potent smell of what she would often called 'death coffee' which she swore was so strong it was more similar to syrup than water. She lets out a groan holding her nose, she had always liked coffee before, but now since tasting this nightmare version of it she hated it. "Great… Fitz is back…"

The last person that lived in the museum was Fitz, a guy who idolized her father as the treasure hunter he was and followed in his footsteps so diligently that her dad took him in when he was only a boy and proudly raised him as his apprentice. So when Fitz wasn't out robbing graves or conning tribes to trade with him old historic artefacts, he was here, doing the same as Eve was and helping out her dad with the running of his beloved museum.

To say that Eve and Fitz did not get along was an understatement, the two were polar opposites of one another in every possible way imaginable, the things that Eve liked Fitz disliked, while the things Fitz liked Eve disliked in return, but whenever Eve's father was around the two got along as well as lifelong best friends… well they didn't actually get along at all, they just acted like it when around Eve's father, as both respected and loved him equally, and it upset the old man when the two of them fought.

Eve enters the staff room, glaring over at a raccoon who sat leaning back on a chair with his feet upon the lunch table, a mug of coffee in his hands. The fur on Eve's back stands up as she growls over at him. "Why haven't you been eaten by wild animals yet?"

Fitz frowns as he looks over to Eve. "Why hasn't the sunlight melted you into a steaming pile of ooze yet?"

An elder fox who used a cane to help him walk enters the room, he grinning at the both of them. "Good morning Eve! Good morning Fitz! It's good to see the two of you already greeting one another."

Eve turns to her father with a smile. "Yes father! I was just telling Fitz about how great it is to have him back here!"

Fitz nods his head agreeing. "And I was telling Eve that I missed her the whole time I was gone. The Eden of the North is a historic and interesting place that is filled with great treasures, but was nothing compared to seeing her smiling face."

Eve's father grins happily. "Oh how nice! You two get along so well you should get married. Wouldn't that be great!"

Eve laughs as she waves her hand to her dad. "Oh dad don't tease me like that!"

Fitz chuckles in agreement. "Yeah, we're practically brother and sister!"

The elder fox leaves the room, both Eve and Fitz letting out disgusted and horrified groans at the thought.

Fitz takes a huge gulp of his coffee before looking back to Eve. "So, anything interesting happen while I was gone?"

Eve frowns back at him. "Nothing that you would find interesting, so if I were you I would start scheduling my next trip so that you can leave as soon as possible to prevent getting bored."

Fitz looks back at her annoyed. "Har har."

Eva stands in front of a group of children, holding her hand out to a collection of pictures and maps that hung on the wall of the museum, this all depicting how the world looked like before the big change had taken place, she explaining to the children the history concerning it.

"- the people could not so drastically change the land to suit their needs as what had been done in the past, as that is what caused the world to end. Instead it was the people who had to change in order to suit the land's needs, and man became beasts, growing tail and fang and becoming as primitive as the new land."

There is laughter from the children when they see the next picture that Eve points out to them, it being a painting of nothing more than a normal person.

"Boy are they ever ugly."

"They look so sickly, there's hardly any fur on them at all."

"Am I glad we don't look like that, I would cry myself to sleep every night."

"My mom says that story isn't real, and that scientists are just saying that we came from humans because they don't want to believe that we were created by a higher power."

Eve raises her left hand to her head as she begins scratching behind her furry pointed ear that was now held down against her head, she a little embarrassed by the comment. "Now, now children, it's not that the scientists exist only to deny people of their beliefs, I mean there are countless amounts of compelling and interesting evidence that suggests-"

The ears of each and every one of the children perk up when the high pitched voice of a boy that had wandered from their group calls over to them from another hall of the museum. "Hey guys come look at this! They got real live bugs over here and some of them look awesome!"

The children all run off in the direction of the other to see the exhibit he was talking about, an elder bear dressed in a smart looking suit that had been standing behind them letting out a heavy sigh as he calls after them. "Students you were not given permission to leave, students!" He heaves himself after them when none of them show any signs of listen to him.

The female fox watches her audience leave sadly, her tail hung low, back hunched and ears dropping down. "Of course… history of the creation of life as we know it was out done by a collection of bugs… I should have seen this coming…" She trudges off to the staff room. "Last month it was the 'Puppets of the World' exhibit that outshone me, and then the month before that it was 'In and Out, The Adventures of the Digestive System'…."

She forces the door to the staff room open and slams it behind her in anger, startling Fitz who had been attempting to get a free snack from the vending machine, the raccoon grinning when he sees her acting as if he hadn't been doing anything wrong. "The foxy lady is having trouble with today's visitors again?"

Eve glares over at him not amused by his comment. "How many times do I have to tell you Fitz, the foxy thing is not funny, maybe it might have been cute the first or second time I heard it but by now I am so sick of hearing people say that to me that if I hear it one more time I'm going to attack someone!"

"You know Eve people aren't going to stop saying it to you when you keep reacting like that. You're kind of funny to get mad."

Eve lets out an angry growl as she turns away from him, reaching into her pocket for some change as she approaches the staff room's vending machine. "I can't deal with you! It's bad enough my work here is under appreciated by daddy's customers. School children could care less about anything I have to tell them!"

Fitz watches her, he not really seeing that as much of a surprise. "Oh come on Eve, you're an expert in what… dead and boring things. Most normal people don't care about stuff like that, especially kids."

Eve's tail bushes out in anger, she offended by the comment. "For your information I am an expert in lost civilizations! What the heck is boring about that? It's what makes up most of this museum! You can't deny it's an interesting thing! You spend all your time robbing the graves and homes of plenty of these dead civilizations!"

Fitz nods his head that information true enough. "Yeah… well I approach the subject in a much more interesting manner then you by being an exciting treasure hunter! Dodging ancient traps, thwarting cursed mummies, out running giant boulders and even charming the likes of a frisky little wild beauty, all for the sake of securing a priceless historic treasure, or even ancient documents or devices capable of destroying the world as we know it!" He looks back to Eve with a wide grin. "Obviously when concerning the topic of dead civilizations, it's not near as boring when I'm involved!"

"You've never encountered cursed mummies! OR found anything capable of world destruction!"

"Don't question my exploits Professor Blah-Blah-Snore."

Eve is about to snap back at him when the phone in the back pocket of her skirt begins to ring, she taking a break from arguing with Fitz and answering it in a sweet voice, as if she hadn't been snapping at a co-worker at all. "Hello, this is Eve~" She pauses listening to the man on the other end, a tone of shock filling her voice when she responds, she immediately starting to gather her things getting ready to leave. "He said something different…? When…?"

The fox grabs onto her keys before running to the door of the staff room "I'll be right there."

Fitz watches Eve gather her things in a rush. "Where are you going? Don't you still have that third grade class to deal with?"

She stops for a moment to look back at Fitz. "You're not doing anything better with your time you can deal with them. I have to go to work right now!"

Fitz watches as she leaves, a perplexed look on his face.

Eve gives her father a quick wave when she passes him not stopping to talk as she runs out of the entrance the museum startling people as she passes them, a look of absolute amazement on her face. "For as long as I've been on this project he's never said anything different… never."

Five Years Ago

Eve is dressed in a white coat, following a rat who is also dressed in a white coated animal as they make their way down a long hallway. She excited to be starting her new job, only a few days ago she had gotten a phone call from the militaries science department about a job opening. She could hardly believe it, all the schooling and hard word had paid off bigger then she had thought it would.

The rat she followed looks back to her, a bored look on his face as he begins to speak to his new employee. "You're about to become a part of the world's most boring and useless three hundred year old project."

The excitement Eva has dies down a second, she looking back to her new boss not understanding the comment. "Most boring? This project is a top secret government military plan that is supposed to prevent the end of the world! How can that be boring? I almost died when I got the call that they wanted me to be a part of it! Me of all people! This is a dream come true!"

The rat in front of her lets out a sigh. "Just wait until you see how we do it… it's so completely unscientific and unorthodox it's embarrassing. You'll start to wonder what all those years of studying you did are for, because in all honesty any bum can do this job."

Eva doesn't seem to understand. "I don't get it… I mean there are a lot of projects like this going on, it's almost impossible to avoid them in the scientific field. Right now we live closer than ever to the way our ancestors did before they ended up causing the end of the world, so there's a staggering amount of people looking to prevent that same mistake from happening again. We're saving the world as we know it!"

Her new boss opens the door to a room for her, Eva walking inside and looking around her, it a plane room with a only a table and some chairs set in front of a single sided window, Eva walking over to the window and looking through it, two people on the other side sitting at a small table across from one another.

One of the figures was a scientist like her, the other was a black wolf dressed in the clothes that a test subject would wear, the emblem of the government military on a patch on his shoulder.

Eva seems confused, this looking more like an interrogation than something that held any scientific merit. "Are we in the right room?"

The rat she had been following holds his hand out to the window in front of them. "That's the government's top secret project."

"I… don't really get it…"

Her new boss nods his head, obviously having expected a reaction like that from her. "Take a good look at him, based on the knowledge in your expertise tell me what you see."

Eve looks back at the black wolf that was being referred to. "Well… let's see… he's defiantly not from a domesticated line of wolves, you can tell by the way he looks, he has a lot of wild features to him that were breed out during the progress of technical advances, because we no longer needed them anymore, the prominent muzzle, fanged teeth, and it looks like his coat has grown thick to deal with the seasons getting colder. But in concern to his physic he's very under developed for someone that should be wild." She looks away from the black wolf and back to her superior. "I would guess that he was born wild, but raised here with the domestics."

"Right you are Miss. Cadrey. He was born to one of the many tribes that live outside the cities, but he has lived here inside of this building his entire life."

Eve doesn't catch onto the importance of this. "Well… that's not completely unheard of… there are dozens of wolf tribes native to this area, so you do get the occasional cross or even full bloods that choose to become domesticated and live as any other normal person. So what's so special about this one?"

"I told you this project was over three hundred years old by now didn't I?" He lifts his hand pointing a finger to the black wolf. "Well, that is subject 1502, and he is the project."

Eva doesn't have time to catch her breath. "He's over three hundred years old! That's impossible! He doesn't look a day over twenty!" She tries to make sense of this information. "If he really is over three hundred years old like you say, then why aren't there studies being done on how he's able to survive for so long while looking so young? People would pay millions for this knowledge! So why exactly… are we relating him to the end of the world…?"

Her superior lets out a tired sigh. "Because of some old baseless belief the founders of this project have. "Those who are born with eyes of white are ones with the gift to see the future."

Eva nods her head, having heard that saying before plenty of times. "It's a common belief shared between all wild tribes worldwide despite their differing customs and religions." She looks back to the black wolf while her superior asks the man inside to have him make the wolf look in the direction of the one sided mirror, the black wolf turning his head and staring in the direction when he is told. Eve staring at him, having missed this because he had before been staring down at the table he sat at. "White eyes…"

Her superior slowly nods his head. "You've probably guessed it by now. The reason he's kept here is because he'll supposedly see 'how the world will end' and then we when he tells us how we will tell the higher ups and they will take the appropriate measures to make sure that it's prevented."

Eva slowly turns back to him. "That's… it… that's all the huge top secret government project is?"

Her superior nods his head yes as he pulls up a chair taking his seat. "Be prepared to face the most boring job you will ever be given. Subject 1502 gives us the exact same answers every day when the question is asked." He begins to speak to the other scientist who is right now in the room with the black wolf through a headset he had. "We're ready, you can go on and begin now."

The scientist nods his head as he looks back to the black wolf and begins to question him. "How was your sleep last night?"

The black wolf speaks up answering his question. "Normal."

"Did you have any strange dreams?"

The black wolf shakes his head. "No, just the same dream as every other night. The dream where I watch my mother die."

"Do you recall anything other than that? Anything at all?"

The black wolf shakes his head. "No…" He pauses for a moment before speaking up and beginning to question the man in front of him. "Why exactly do you people keep asking me this question? What are you expecting me to see?"

The man closes his file after her finishes writing down his results. "That's it for today, Mr. Conner will escort you back to your room now."

The black wolf nods his head as he gets up, opening to door to the room and meeting a grey wolf that stood in wait on the other side for him, the guard smiling in a friendly manner when he sees him. "Done for the day then?" The black wolf with the white eyes nods his head in response, the military soldier beginning to lead him out of the room and down the hall. "Don't you ever get tired of answering that same question every day? I know I would get tired of being asked it all the time."

Eva looks back to her superior, she surprised by the instruction the scientist had given the black wolf. "You keep him confined here?"

Her new boss looks back to her, he not intentionally being cruel to the guy. "We're not the ones that keep him confined." He points to the military officer that had been waiting outside the room to escort the subject out. "The governments domestic military are the ones that keep him confined. They believe that contact to the outside world will alter his thoughts and may cause day dreams, wants or other ideas of imagination that could interfere with his visions. All we have to do is monitor him and ask him that same question every day, and then hand in our results, nothing more than that."

Eva stares at him for a moment. "That's completely ridicules, there are no scientific bases on this person being able to see the future! We're wasting our time!"

Her boss nods her head. "The only reason I don't complain about it is because they pay me well for doing a job that almost anyone could do."