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Red Wolf

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"Unnghhhh," you let out a long groan as you pressed down on the open wound in your thigh. Blood coated your hands, your pants, just about everything. It had been several minutes but as hard as you were trying, you couldn't get the bleeding to slow. Your vision turned blurry as the pain overtook you. You fought to stay conscious but you were fighting a losing battle.

A few moments later, a low growl brought you to. Opening your eyes, you see a pair of dark lips pulled back tightly, revealing a sharp set of teeth. The wolf's hot breath pushing into your gaping mouth. This was the largest wolf you had ever seen. It's white fur was thick and caked with dirt and dried blood, particularly around the muzzle. A red cross was drawn between its wild eyes. Oh fuck, you thought. It's a god damned Judge.

You hadn't been in Hope County long but word travels fast, particularly when you're living in a war zone. The elderly couple running the bed and breakfast you had been staying at told you stories of these beasts - rabid wolves: stronger, faster and more fierce than any you'd encounter in the wild. You supposed they were wild at one point, before Jacob and his hunters got ahold of them. And of course you heard frightening stories about him too, and all the Seeds really, so you did your best not to stray too far north. But you realized now that you must have left Holland Valley accidentally while out for your walk.

You pushed yourself up on your elbows, kicking your feet while trying to scurry backward. The wolf let out another terrifying growl. You closed your eyes tightly, knowing you'd never outrun the predator in your current state and braced yourself for the attack.

A low whistle sounded behind you in the thick brush and the breath you felt beating down on your face disappeared. You opened your eyes to see the Judge sitting obediently at your feet, staring behind you. You twisted around as best as you could to see a large man in a camouflage jacket stepping into the clearing. You recognized him instantly from his shock of red hair - Jacob, the oldest Seed brother. The Soldier.

"Fuck," you muttered between gritted teeth. Things had just gone from bad to worse. You laid back on the grass, hoping for some kind of miracle.

Jacob took two long strides before he reached you. He stopped with his boots on either side of your shoulders. His blue eyes pierced yours, searching.

"Resistance?" he asked in a low voice. His expression was calm. You stared up at him, unable to speak. He let out a long dramatic sigh, pressing his hands to his knees and bending down to your level.

"Are you part of the fucking Resistance or are you just mute?" he spit.

"N..no."

He straightened up and looked at his Judge, his eyes were almost asking him what he should do with you.

"Well you're fucking shot," he stated calmly. "I'd normally say you must be fighting for someone but I don't see any weapons." He kicked at your leg lazily, causing a scream to escape your lips.

Jacob walked around you, staring down at your face, contorted in pain. He would normally leave you in the woods and let nature run its course. You weren't one of his and you weren't Resistance, or so you claimed, so why should he waste a bullet. Over the years, he had become very good at reading people though; he honestly believed you were just an innocent bystander in whatever happened here. His thoughts turned to his brother. Joseph would be happy to know he had saved you. He was always spurting off some bullshit about how he and John needed to "love the people".

"Fine," Jacob muttered to himself before picking you up abruptly from the ground. You bit the inside of your cheek to stop another scream from erupting. He wasn't being overly gentle in the way he carried you. In fact, his fingers dug into the flesh just below your wound as he trudged through the trees and underbrush. His bright eyes stared ahead or occasionally darted down to the wolf trotting by his side, but never to you. A few minutes later, you came to a white pickup on the road. Jacob held your torso to his and removed his hand from your legs, opening the passenger side door. He basically threw you into the seat and hopped into the driver's seat, nodding an instruction to the Judge. It disappeared back into the woods.

Normally you would spill some smart ass remark about how he ought to treat you like a lady but you felt yourself starting to lose consciousness again. The pain shooting down your leg travelled throughout your lower body, as waves of nausea threatened you. You turned to Jacob, mouthing the word "window" but he just pushed your head back into the seat and instructed you to rest. He obviously wasn't shaken up by the amount of blood that was soaking your clothes and now the interior of his truck. You opened your mouth to speak but were unable to move. Your eyes closed again and you thought about how this was quite possibly the worst day of your life.