All I could hear was the sound of my own ragged breath and the rustle of my paws across the meadow grass. Right now, this was heaven, to race against the wind until my lungs burned for air. Nothing could beat it. The youthful adrenaline kept me going for miles, far away from my mother and the pack. Here I was free. I took a flying leap into the air and howled out my soul to the moon and stars above. My voice resounded from the trees in a myriad of echoes, each pronouncing my presence in the world.

I was a young male wolf, ready to escape my pack and make my own mark on this wide earth. Fighting my father for leadership of the pack was out of the question. My brother had already died in that attempt, taking away any desire of mine to rise against my father. Besides, building my own pack sounded much more exciting. I wanted to find a mate far stronger than my ill-prone mother, whom rarely left the cover of the forest brush for her health. I had been lucky to be born so strong despite that.

Beside a creek I finally collapsed panting for air. I rolled over on my back and wiggled my body into the grass, loving the way it rubbed against my fur. For a while I stayed like that with my legs sticking up awkwardly in the air. The moon shone down on me in all her beauty as her children, the stars, winked in dazzling patterns across the dark sky. This was the moment I had always dreamed of, to be alone and independent as any other male had the right to be. What use was there of a pack when I could take care of myself. Absolutely none, that's what. I huffed and watched my breath spiral up into the air.

Suddenly I heard another howl pierce the night and I was on my feet in an instant. This howl wasn't from any member of the pack. This was a lone male wolf, and he was close by. I began to tremble in fear. He would certainly kill me if he found me. Could I run without him noticing? By the sound of his voice he was an older wolf and therefore much more experienced. He would probably take his time in wearing me out far before reaching the pack. Oh, how I wished now that I hadn't traveled so far. The only thing I could do now was hunker down and wait for my fate, whether it be good or bad.

Forever it seemed until the wolf began to make his appearance. Through the trees came the faint rustle of his paws over the ground. I rose to my full height and faced directly toward the source of the sound. Preparation for a fight was necessary. A glint of fur flashed between the trees and I tensed. The footsteps became more rapid. He was going to come out at me any moment now.

Like a beam of moonlight he shot from the underbrush and loped in a circle around me. He was going for my side. I tried to turn fast enough to catch him, but ended up tripping over my own feet. My front legs slipped backwards and I flipped over onto my back with a thud. He had narrowly avoided me and was now gazing at me curiously. I scrambled back to me feet and faced him once more with hackles raised and teeth bared. He mirrored my aggressive stance.

The night breeze was filled with our growls as we fought, bit, and kicked at each other. I had youth, but he had cunning. He countered my every move with practiced precision. Still I fought with all my might. No way was I going to lose to this old wolf. Finally I managed a bite to his snout. He reared away with a growl and swiped hard at my head, sending me spinning away into the grass.

I laid there blinking for a moment. My head had turned to fuzz. He paced over to my side and stood looking at down at me through fierce eyes. Fantastic, now he was going to kill me. I had finally gotten my freedom and now fate was going to come around to bite me in the ass. My body was too tired to move, since I had fought so soon after finishing a long run. Mistake number two. Or was it three?

After a bit I realized he hadn't touched me and I opened my eyes. He was sitting in my line of sight with his head tilted as he gazed at me. His posture was relaxed and friendly now. Was the wolf old and senile? Any sane male would've ripped me to shreds by now. Cautiously I got to my feet, just in case he was faking to throw off my guard. He still didn't move. This was starting to tick me off.

I stepped toward him and lowered my head to let out a threatening growl. If he wasn't going to fight, then I was sure going to. With a leap I rushed at him. My jaws were just about to connect with his neck when he quickly sidestepped me. How did he do that? I barely got me feet under control before going into another flip. I stopped briefly to look around and saw him standing a few feet away to my left. I went into another attack, this time prepared to turn with him at a moments notice.

The thud of my back hitting the ground echoed loudly in my ears. I had no clue what just happened. The ache in my ribs told me where his paws had hit, but the movement had been too quick for my eyes. It seemed impossible that this old wolf could be so strong and agile. There was no reason he should be out here as a lone wolf. As a pack leader he would still be the epitome of power.

Before I could swing my legs over to stand, he moved over me to plant his paws at my sides. He lowered his head until his nose touched mine and kept that pose, just staring silently into my eyes. Well, this added a lot to his strange points. This seemed to serve no other purpose than some secret curiosity of his.

Then suddenly he jumped high up into the air at an impossible height. I watched him with wide eyes as he seemed to soar over the ground on invisible wings. He landed gracefully a great distance away and twisted around to once again fix his eyes on me. I rolled to my feet and shook the debris from my fur, being careful to keep him in my sight. I had to be wary of his next move.

He ran back and forth with his tail high and his ears pricked, repeating the action a few times. He wanted me to follow him? My pack came to mind again. Even if I did manage to find my way I doubted if they would take me back. My only choices now were to remain a lone wolf or join him. So reluctantly I followed him, knowing I couldn't survive on my own.

Through many miles of thick forest we traveled, occasionally coming across a creek or patch of sunlight. His path twisted and turned at odd places, causing me to wonder if he really had a destination in mind. Sometimes he would even turn on his heel, no matter if there was a block in our path or not, and head back the way he came. Once we came across a grazing moose and had to run for our lives with his huge rack at our rears. The moose eventually gave up fell back when we had gone over a mile. Only then did we stop to take a rest.

That's when I was able to get a closer look at him. He stood a few inches taller than me and his face and legs were covered in old scars. I guessed he was at least eight years old, which meant he had been forced out of his pack just to let a younger leader take his place. His coat was nearly white with a few grizzly hairs from age. The color in one of his eyes was faded to a pale gold, like the grass of summer. He must have been a grand leader in his youth.

I sat with my back to one of the trees to lick some dirt off my paws. A creek would've been better, but I didn't feel like taking another step right now to find one. He stepped toward me and I paused to look up. What did he want now? He touched his nose against mine for the second time, breathing into my snout. His breath warmed my face and made me squint. Then he tilted his head to the side.

What he did next shocked me, but was a little pleasant at the same time. He stuck out his tongue to press against my mouth as if trying to force it in. I opened my mouth cautiously, ready to defend myself in case it was trick. He tilted his head farther and opened his mouth wider to envelope my snout in his, sliding his tongue against mine. What a curious and somewhat affectionate sensation. I had never witnessed this between my mother and father, but I assumed it had something to do with courtship.

For a long moment he simply stood there and slid his tongue back and forth in my mouth. I returned the action a few times, enjoying the rough feeling of his thick tongue. When he finally removed his snout from mine, he licked his face with a fire in his expression. I also licked my face off to rid my fur of the saliva. Whatever courtship ritual that was or where he learned it, it was delightful.

He stepped beside me and with his nose he nudged my rear. The signal was clear as spring water, so I stood and moved into an open area between the trees. Was it really wise to accept such an old mate? A bit late to think of that now, but was a legit question. There was no doubt that he was strong enough. His intelligence seemed lacking though and there was no telling when he would simply drop dead of a worn out heart.

Instead of the mounting I was expecting, he chose another method that I was unfamiliar with. He came up beside me and pushed against my side like he was trying to roll me over. I obeyed, even though I was still a bit confused. He stuck his tongue in my mouth once more before turning to stand over my lower half. This old wolf was indeed insane, but I still felt no aggression from him, so I decided to go with it.

With a jolt I felt his tongue drag slowly over my member. He repeated the action with continuously firmer strokes until my whole body was trembling. This felt so indescribably good that I wanted him to go on forever. Then he stopped suddenly to my brief disappointment, before replacing his tongue with one of his front paws. He watched my face intensely as he continued to squish my member between his toes. Somehow I imagined this was what burning alive felt like. I was sure my insides were going to implode soon from this extreme sensation that gripped my body.

With a final great shiver I felt myself release over the fur of my belly. My tongue lolled from my mouth as I panted. I felt like I had run to the ends of the earth and back. He dipped his head low to lick the stickyness from my long fur. Then he went and laid on his side beside me and used his right paw to bring me over on my side as well to face him. He placed his leg over my neck and brought his head forward to touch noses with me yet again. Never had I seen such behavior as he had performed with me, but I liked it. It left me extremely tired though.

I yawned wide and reconnected the nose touch he liked so much before closing my eyes to fall asleep. Just before I drifted off I swore I could've heard a human voice, but for some reason it was comforting. Then my mind was swallowed by the darkness of a dreamless sleep.