Werewolf Without a Cause

By: H.T. Night

Entwined Series #5



Chapter One





“Trouble usually finds its way to my side of the fence.”

That was the mantra of my existence.

Trouble.

I was in the mood to bust heads and asses. In that order. I wanted to snap bones, smash noses, and crunch ribs.

I turned around and walked outside the front of the bar. I leaned on the building, relaxed, but still ready to bust some skulls, if they had the stupid balls to come outside. I lit a smoke and shielded it from the drizzle inside my cupped hand, holding it backward.

Being a lonely lone wolf, I channeled a little bit of James Dean, and a lot of Dirty Harry, and I got ready to fight all comers.

With no car keys, and with a full bar tab inside, I waited for them in a light drizzle, looking up at the murky night and hoping that Maya couldn’t see far I had sunk without her.

Unable to stop myself, I lifted my chin and, at full volume, I howled miserably into the weeping sky.

No one dared to come out. Not even the bouncer. That was just as well; the people in there were smarter than they looked. There wasn’t even one drunk asshole who was itching to fight like I was.

That was fine. There was more of this night left. I walked inside and demanded my car keys. I paid my bar tab and I got the hell out of that shit bar.

I was sure as hell not through with this aggression that loomed inside me. I wanted to scream. I wanted to cry. I just howled out my window as I drove. It was a howl for the ages. I howled all the way up the 15 freeway and I made my way to Las Vegas.

No one had better mess with me. Actually, I hoped someone would.

Be the one.

I dare you.





Chapter Two





I drove down the 15 freeway. It was a dark, lonely road, and a visual metaphor for how I felt inside. My future was only lit up as far as my headlights reached. It was a damn short vision of the next few hours, not to mention the rest of my life.

How am I supposed to go forward when the love of my life has been taken from me?

I started breathing heavily as I fought the urge to howl again, which took a lot out of me when I did it in my human form. My eyes began to water and I looked off into the night as I drove and cried out, “Why? Why!”

This pain wouldn’t go away. I loved Maya so much.

Before I knew it, my Mustang was hitting 100 miles an hour. The more I hurt, the faster I drove.

My eyes were so watery that I could barely see the road. I passed the city of Baker and the next stop was State Line.

I drove until I hit Las Vegas.

By then, it was four in the morning and I wasn’t tired. My adrenaline was pumping and I needed to do something competitive. The only competitive thing a guy could really do in Vegas at four in the morning was play poker. I was still in the mood to drink and gamble, even though it was so early in the morning.

I decided to stay at The Riviera, located between all the really nice hotels on the Strip and downtown Las Vegas. Downtown Las Vegas was made up of classic famous casinos from the Bugsy Siegel era. It was a little cheaper than the high-end swanky hotels on the Strip. The Strip was glitzier and upscale. I was more of a downtown-and-dirty guy.

I got to my room and looked at my bed. It did look inviting.

Maybe I’ll sleep off this aggression?

Not quite. This day had just begun. I was tired but wired. I continued to look at the bed and I couldn’t help but think of Maya. I missed her so much. I missed her next to me. I missed the way she would hold my hand all night. If I’d let go, she’d find my hand again and hold it. She had done that numerous times throughout the night. Eventually, I’d felt peace when she held my hand and it had become my comfort when I was sleeping. I didn’t have that comfort anymore. And I suddenly realized that a bed without Maya in it would just be torture right now.

Fuck sleep.

This pain was unbearable. I needed to play poker. Serious poker.

Rat Pack style.

I remembered there were good games at the Venetian Hotel. I had played some poker in my time. I had quit it when I admitted to myself that I loved the gambling high way too much. When I’d quit, I’d lost a lot of money and I’d promised myself that I was quitting for good. The truth was, no one ever quit while they were winning. Not one gambler. Ever.

At the time, even though I was making great money, I couldn’t even pay my bills. I was that hooked. And here I was back again in Vegas, about to slay this inner need in me to even up the loss in my life. Not that anything could ever replace Maya. I just knew that right now, another woman was the last thing on my mind. Poker would have to provide some small compensation.

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