I immediately stopped when I heard the snap of a stick. I froze, my head shot up, and my ears swiveled forwards. My nose twitched. I didn’t know the smell, but it sent a warm shiver down my spine, ruffling my fur. Instantly my lips parted and I began to pant as my heart sped up. I felt my dull claws throb with adrenaline
A few hundred feet in front of us stood a huge buck. Its antlers gleamed in the sunlight as its head hung to the ground. A tiny tail swished behind it as it ate, oblivious to the two of us.
Dustin crouched down next to me. “Alright, here’s what we’re going to do. See that—”
I never head the rest of what he was saying because I second later I launched myself forward, unable to contain my energy. I burst out from behind out little bush, snarling and snapping my jaws. The buck’s eyes widened in terror and it cried out before it turned and ran.
“Jenny!” Dustin called from behind me. “Dammit!”
I let my paws carry me through the woods. Surprisingly, I didn’t slip or slide and or tumble over a broken tree. In fact, I hardly had to think about what I was doing. The white underside of the deer’s tail grew closer as I gained on it.
When I was close enough, I took one final step and then leapt. My teeth snapped closed around one of the deer’s hind legs. It screeched and stumbled as it tried to keep running. It trashed and cried out again. I knew in another step or two, it would be dragged to the ground.
Come on, one more faulty step and—
When I opened my eyes, I was lying on my side with my jaw throbbing. In the distance the buck was stamping away until he disappeared into the woods. I shut my eyes and groaned.
Dustin’s paw-steps raced behind me.
“Are you ok?” He said, bending his neck down to sniff me.
I heaved myself up into a sitting position. The right side of my face still ached but I was able to open and close my mouth.
“Yeah, I’m fine,” I said and I rubbed my jaw with my paw.
“You took a nasty kick to the face there. You’re lucky it missed your eye or didn’t snap your jaw.”
“Thanks,” I said sarcastically. “Anyway, there goes out dinner.” I looked off in the distance where the deer had vanished into the tress as if I expected it to come walking right back out, but everything was silent.
Dustin flicked his ears. “If you had listened to me and waited, I could have told you what to do.”
I rolled my eyes. “Don’t we just chase the stupid animal?”
“You can chase deer all you want, but if you do it like that, you’ll end up getting your brains kicked in,” he said with a chuckle. “Besides. We’re wolves—we normally live and hunt in packs for a reason.”
“I don’t need your help. I was doing perfectly fine.”
“You didn’t look perfectly fine lying on the ground holding your jaw.”
“Oh please,” I snapped, standing up and shaking the dust from my fur. “Like you were born a natural deer hunter.”
He glanced at me sideways and shrugged, grinning. “Hey, some people are born with natural talents.”
“Well, you were born a pain in the ass,” I muttered under my breath.