Categories > TV > 10th Kingdom2 Reviews
A serious story that gives a little insight into what Wolf's life might have been like before the movie.
As Sally Peep's flirtatious voice echoed throughout Wolf's clear and yet muddled mind, he thought frantically. His /name/. What was his /name/?
The words came out of his mouth before he could stop them. "Wolfson..../Warren/ Wolfson."
It was a name from his past, a name he thought he would never find himself repeating again.
He had become so accustomed to people spitefully calling him "Wolf" that he almost believed he was unworthy of a true identity....
Sorrow-filled memories flashed quickly through his mind before he was able to block them.
Warren came cheerfully bounding inside the farmhouse with his sisters and brother, the five soon being greeted by their robust mother.
"Hello, my little wolfies," Mrs. Wolfson smiled. "You must be starving. That school certainly doesn't provide as much food for growing cubs as it should." She said nearly the same thing every school day, but none of her children minded. It was a comfortable routine.
The enormous Mr. Wolfson gestured towards the large kitchen table, upon which heaps of meat sat invitingly. "Hop to it, younglings! When you're done with what's on the table we have a special treat for you...a succulent ewe. I bought her cheaply at the market just today!"
"Huff puff! will she provide content bellies for my babies!" Mrs. Wolfson's tongue lolled happily.
Wenda and Wyndi, twins who were slightly younger than Warren, quickly sat down in chairs beside each other, tearing ravenously into the food.
Will walked over to the table in a more dignified manner. Being the second youngest cub, he was going through a phase in which he pretended to be just as mature as his parents. He began eating, but it was much less wolfish than his two sisters, even if the spark in his eyes was just the same.
Wulina, the youngest cub who was holding Warren's hand in her tiny paw, finally tugged to show her oldest brother that she was ready to be led to the table. Slowly, the eldest cub took the youngest forward.
"Pass?" Wulina asked Warren simply in her small voice, pointing. He nodded, grabbing the meat and lovingly giving it to his little sister.
"How was school?" the she-wolf inquired of her children.
"Intellectually challenging!" Will spoke up, using two words he had just learned recently.
Mr. Wolfson's eyes narrowed. "You know the scent of lies is distasteful to our noses. Speak truth or speak not at all."
The youngest boy looked down at his hands. "It was as boring as a cloud-filled night sky. No fun."
"Aww," Mrs. Wolfson cooed, "eat something and you'll feel better." Will Wolfson proceeded to follow her instructions. She smiled as she watched her cubs gorge themselves, then began casually, "There's a full moon tonight."
Mr. Wolfson pressed his fingers against his forehead above his right eyebrow and scratched nervously. "Cripes," Warren heard him whisper. The moon made him nervous.
"There certainly is." Will looked up, eyes glinting wildly as he finished ripping the last shred of meat off the bone he'd been working on. Everyone's blood was sizzling, like water that had been left on the stove for far too long.
"Perhaps we should just remain inside the house this full moon," Mr. Wolfson suggested quiveringly.
"But the moon's so beautiful," his wife whispered, her devilish wolf eyes showing through her kind human ones.
"Such a creamy, gorgeous orb...It calls to me." Mrs. Wolfson briefly tore her gaze from the night sky. "Can you feel its calling, my cubs?" Her eyes were once again raised and fixed. "The moon heightens your senses, livens your limbs, intensifies your surroundings...and still some wolves are scared of the moon. Scared of what it does to them." Another quick glance, "Your father is one of those wolves. Even now, he sits inside the house, knowing what is to happen to him, but trying to fight it...always trying, but never succeeding. You can't fight the moon's power...can't change it. Its magnificence shall overcome you every time..." In his mother's eyes, Warren could see nothing but the full moon. She loved it...craved it.../desired/ it.
Warren could feel the moon's pulling on him (how could he not?), but he, like his father, wished to fight it. No matter how hard Warren struggled against the wolf in him he lost every time. His battle was never helped by the fact that every night Mrs. Wolfson dragged all of her cubs out to bask in the brilliant moonlight to satisfy her obsession.
Mrs. Wolfson lifted her head up towards the star-speckled night sky and let out a hungry animal howl, her children answering her in the age-old song. The house door slammed shut, and a wild-eyed Mr. Wolfson came out, no longer able to fight it, joining in submissively.
Almost expectantly, Warren looked at his large mother's gaping mouth, then he tore his gaze away and upwards. The muscles in his neck twitched and strained as his teeth pointed into lethal fangs, and what felt like a possessed demon lashed at his eyes and changed the appearance of his surroundings.
Warren let loose a snarl that turned into a call which his parents and siblings answered.
Then the wolves were free.
When Warren awakened in the field he and his family had foolishly vacated the night before, it was to a wretched scream no human should have ever made. "Wolf! Wolf!" a feminine voice screeched.
Mr. Wolfson was several yards away from Warren, staring silently at a non-descript spot on the ground. Finally, he arose and went to the area, starting to dig. Warren didn't speak, the female's scream still ringing in his ears.
Warren's father found what he was looking for, and he held out a bag to Warren, who took it, staring. Quietly, Mr. Wolfson spoke. "It contains gold and a dragon dun bean, which I trust you to use in the proper situation. But remember, with the good comes bad. I've had that bean longer than we've had you, and though I've been tempted many times, I've resisted. I hope you can be strong."
"W-what are you talking about?" Warren inquired, his voice shaking.
"We did the crime, my cub, now we must pay the time," a female voice said from behind him, causing him to jump.
"But...can't we just run away? We should just run!"
"From what?" Wulina's tiny voice queried as she stood in the doorframe.
The commotion from the town was getting louder.
No one answered, and Wulina insisted, "From /what/?" Her bottom lip quivered, and her eyes started to well up.
"From the bad people," Warren answered shortly. "Have you seen Wenda, Wyndi, or Will?"
Wulina nodded. "In house. Headaches."
"/Please/," Warren pleaded, looking at his parents.
Mr. Wolfson shook his head. "It's our time, son."
"We did it for the moon; she wanted us to. I have not the power to fight her...." Mrs. Wolfson sighed, then spoke urgently. "Huff puff/, my children, think of it not as goodbye, but as a parting. We /shall meet again. You must go through the forest, and be careful if taking animals from other farmers...but make sure you go far away from here. Far away."
"No, no, no!" Warren insisted as Wulina confusedly took his hand. "You can come with us!"
"You need to put a little less garlic and a little more rosemary on your lamb dishes," Mr. Wolfson said casually, as if he hadn't heard his oldest cub's plea.
Warren whimpered, then let loose a pain-wracked howl.
"I'm telling you it was those Wolfsons! I always knew they were nothin' but trouble!"
"Burn 'em! Beat 'em! Chop 'em into a million pieces like they did my sheep!"
"Your sheep? What about my chickens?!"
"Burn them alive!"
"They must die!"
An angry mob was coming closer to the Wolfson's property, and, knowing that the minds of Mr. and Mrs. Wolfson were set, Warren gathered his siblings.
"Take care, my children."
"Try to protect them, Warren," Mr. Wolfson said softly. Warren nodded quickly, itching his nose nervously.
"I will. You have my solemn wolf word." Warren met his father's sorrowfully amused eyes (for it was a phrase Mr. Wolfson often used with his wife), and finally he met his father in a sudden embrace.
Farewells were quickly exchanged, although little Wulina wasn't quite sure of precisely why she was saying goodbye, and tears were sparkling in more than just one pair of eyes.
Whimpering, Warren glanced down the hill at the ever-closer and ever-louder mob, finally snarling urgently at his brother and sisters to run towards the forest. The twins were the first to obey, and Will went soon after them, grabbing Wulina's hand. Warren ran for a way, but stopped near the edge of the forest (for, since they were half-wolves, their farm was positioned by the woods) to get a final glance at his parents, who had stopped in the middle of the road in front of their house and were standing stock still, their backs to him.
They didn't struggle as the crowd overtook them.
Warren knew in his heart that they believed it was their destiny as half-wolves to die in such a way, but they were wrong! They had to be....
It wasn't their fault they had killed some farmer's livestock. It was the moon's fault! He didn't see them tying up and burning the moon....
A tear trickled down his face, and he uneasily scratched his dark hair, watching his parents get dragged away, their enormous bodies finally lifted in the sky, held up by a bunch of angered hands.
He had to save them...had to try /something/!
Before another suicidal thought could cross his mind, he felt the presence of someone beside him, and turned towards Will, who had a vicious edge to his chin of the likes Warren had never seen.
"Willie, go back-" Warren cut himself off as his brother ran forward, adrenaline and insane rage helping his limbs propel him forward quick as lightning.
Into the crowd Warren's sibling went, a cub raving mad and bent on revenge. Mr. and Mrs. Wolfson were already tied up and surrounded by logs and sticks. A torch was hovering in preparation, faltering as its holder noticed the angered half-wolf slashing his way through the large throng of people.
Warren could hear his brother's snarls even from where he was standing. He was torn between tucking his tail between his legs and going after his sisters, or trying to rip his brother away from his eccentric act and most likely getting himself killed and leaving his sisters to fend for themselves.
Growling, he ran forward a few steps, watching in horror as farmers raised pitchforks and repeatedly stabbed and stuck Will Wolfson in the chest. Warren tried to cry out, but nothing more than a whimper of disbelief escaped his mouth, and a tear traced a lonely path down his cheek.
Then he saw his strong, brave parents go up in flames, Will's lifeless body thrown into fire to be incinerated as well.
He could sense the calm radiating off of the two Wolfsons as their souls escaped their burning bodies, a calm that was the antithesis of the fury Warren felt.
Unable to prevent himself from doing so, Warren let out a blood-curdling howl which raised the eyes of all the townspeople, finally swiveling around with a snarl, and disappearing into the woods.
"Where's Willie?" Wulina asked, sticking her thumb in her mouth and looking at her brother with wide, innocent eyes.
"Will's not coming back," Warren answered bluntly.
The little cub frowned, "And mommy and daddy?"
"They've gone to a better place," Wenda offered, shooting a warning look to her brother. Warren brought his gaze to the ground. He knew he was supposed to be playing the part of comforter, but he'd just seen his parents burned alive for sheep's sake!
"Let's go," he muttered, grabbing Wulina's hand and stalking forward, Wenda and Wyndi following behind, not approving. He could hear the mob coming closer. They were after blood.
For what seemed like forever the cubs walked through the dark woods, eventually losing the riled crowd. The forest was so thick that day and night barely had any meaning. Wulina cried several times, and when Wenda and Wyndi had thought Warren and Wulina to be asleep, they had held each other and sobbed silently. But Warren had seen, and it had torn at his heart, numbed though it was by the shock of losing both his parents in one day.
Finally, Warren led them out of the dark and entrapping place. They soon came upon a fenced-in field in which a bunch of sheep were cluelessly nibbling at grass next to each other, unwatched by shepherdesses.
To be sure, Warren thoroughly sniffed the air, finding only old traces of humans (he assumed they were doing something in the village square, for he thought he heard people in that direction). He and his starving sisters eagerly went forward. They had eaten a few rabbits and the like while on their journey through the forest, but their bellies ached for a nice meal.
Warren went to the nearest sheep, an average-looking ewe which looked up disinterestedly at his approach. He opened his mouth, preparing to attack, when he heard a low growl to the right of him. He jumped away just as the dog leapt at him, cursing his own foolishness. With a quick scan he realized that the Border Collie had been sleeping underneath a bush with two other sheepdogs, one of which was after Warren's sisters, the other assisting the first with Warren. The wind had played against him.
Warren dodged another attempt, made sure that his three sisters were able to handle the sole dog that was after them, then wrestled with his two assailants on the ground.
As if at some invisible signal, two more dogs came to join the brawl, one going after Wulina and one after Wenda. Wyndi tried to throw off the dog that had her by the sleeve to help her little sister, but a particularly nasty nip on the arm caused her to forget about Wulina and turn with animosity towards her own problem.
One of Warren's opponents lay motionless on the ground, still oozing forth blood from where its jugular vein had been torn into. But it appeared that the townspeople had a special spot in their hearts for dogs, for six more came rushing forward from various directions.
Two went for Wenda, one for Wyndi, and two more for Warren. Wulina could barely hold her own with her single canine, a fact which was quickly becoming apparent by the red liquid staining her dress.
Warren slashed, bit, and kicked, desperately wishing to save what remained of his family from meeting a cold death.
He bashed one of the dogs over the head hard enough to knock it unconscious, all the while snarling and growling like something possessed. The sounds of his sisters battling assaulted his ears, giving him more incentive to defeat those ravaging hounds.
Finally, the absence of noise from one of his sisters struck him, and he spared a glance to find that Wenda wasn't moving, and two of her dogs had moved towards Wyndi and Wulina, the other towards him.
His eyes widened in disbelief only to be jammed shut with pain as one of the dogs dug its teeth harshly into his arm. He became a blur as sorrow was replaced with unbridled rage and time began to run out.
Warren was bleeding from more than a dozen wounds. His tail ached, his arms throbbed, his breathing was labored, and his legs felt like they would never work again.
But still he fought for survival, but not for his survival...for that of his sisters.
"Warr'n!" he heard the shriek of his smallest sister assault his ears, and as soon as he heard it he knew that little Wulina's life had been smothered out of existence.
Ignoring the pains in his chest, Warren got another dog out of the picture, only to have one of Wulina's assailants come towards him and bury its fangs into his calf. He howled in pain, trying in vain to kick it off.
Sometime in the blur of fur and limbs Warren observed that Wyndi had either killed or knocked out two of her attackers. She was left with two, and he with four.
His senses blared at him to fight, to kill, to win. He had to help his last relative. Had to help her /now/.
Afterwards he would wonder how he had done it, wondering if it was just that the dogs had been weakened or if Fate had just pitied him. But no matter what the method or reason was, he managed to bring down his four assailants, and rushed immediately over to help Wyndi with her two remaining dogs. With almost superwolvian strength he knocked the two mutts to the ground, where they yelped and then remained still.
Warren quickly bent down over Wyndi, gently touching her face and wincing at the sight of her stomach, which had been ripped brutally open, signs of it partially showing through her clothes.
"Don't...let this ruin...your life," his sister wheezed, her eyes getting hazy.
"No, you're not going to die on me! You will live! You...just...you just gotta have faith," Warren whimpered.
"Willie's gone...so you'll have to...c-carry..." she coughed, spitting out blood.
"No, no, no," Warren whispered, looking around as if there would be something he could grab and heal her with.
Wyndi refused to be sidetracked, "-carry on the...Wolfson name..."
"You will live!" he said frantically and emphatically.
"Find a nice girl...don't let this...change your-" she coughed again. Warren tried to quiet her, but she went on. "Don't change your nice...ways..." She drew a final breath, "We all loved you the best...carry on for...our sake-"
She was gone.
Warren looked down at the lifeless body in his arms, then at the cursÃ¨d beasts that had helped tear his life apart. Finally, he stared hard at the grazing sheep that were barely even alarmed at the terrible fight that had taken place. Warren's stomach was forgotten, but an intense feeling of anger overcame him, and it was with great restraint that he prevented himself from slaughtering every sheep in the village. His gaze was drawn back to the grounded canines. How he hated dogs.
He buried them in the forest. He liked to think they would have wanted it that way. It was certainly better than burying his siblings in the town where their bones might be dug up by a wretched dog to be carelessly chewed on and then discarded, he thought angrily to himself.
Warren couldn't help but pause as he began to place little Wulina's body into her hole, the cub that had never been anything but nice to everyone. His hand somehow found his pocket, and a small bag which was miraculously unharmed.
He could almost sense the magical bean hopping about inside of it. If he swallowed it, he could bring his family back to life.
Things could be almost exactly as they once were, except they might live in a different place. He would have a family again, a mother, a father, three sisters, a brother....
Warren wondered why his father had given him the bean. Had he wanted Warren to bring them back to life after he found a safe place for them to live?
But the bean's good luck was usually met with just as much bad luck, he knew that.
An image of Wyndi's bloodied corpse walking towards him and asking him what was for dinner caused Warren to shiver, and his hand retreated from the pocket, empty.
It must have been meant as a lesson.
When you try to change what life has given you, nothing but bad can come from it.
Warren's lips trembled and two tears escaped from his eyes as he patted down the ground on the very last grave.
Disbelievingly, Wolf stared down at the squirming cub he held in his arms. He had a son.
The little boy whimpered and tried to wriggle out of his arms, but Wolf held onto him tightly.
The Wolfson name would be carried on. Wolf smiled gently, mumbling "Huff puff!" under his breath and earning a joyful, but exhausted smile from his Virginia. Wyndi would be proud of him.
His parents would be proud of him...Little Wulina would be overjoyed, as would Wenda, and Willie would look at him in that knowing way of his, not smiling outwardly, but inwardly having the largest grin of all.
"My little wolfie," Wolf brought his face down and nuzzled him.
"I love you, Wolf," Virginia said quietly from her horizontal position.
"And I love you/, Virginia," he breathed, moving to his wife's side and bringing their son down near her face. With a grin, he said playfully, "I /told you he was a furry little chap."
The tired mother laughed, smoothing their son's hair, and then touching Wolf's cheek. Wolf again gazed at his son after glancing at Virginia. He had finally started his family.
Wolves could be good people. They just needed to be given the chance.
The cub yawned, reaching his tiny fists in the air as if to tell of the triumphant deeds he would perform when he gained a little height. Wolf pondered something for a moment, then inquired, "Think we should let Tony in now?"
Chuckling, Virginia answered, "I don't know if Dad's ready for this yet."
"Ready to be a /grandpa/?" Wolf's eyes danced as he remembered what he had said to Tony Lewis before he and Virginia had gone through the mirror to Central Park.
"Oh, I think he'll get used to it."
"He's gonna have to," Virginia looked at her husband lovingly.
Yes, Wolf reflected once again, he had started his family, and a very promising future was ahead of him. He just hoped Virginia could survive the birth of four more children.
Author's Note: If it weren't for Kitt, this fic would have ended on a depressing note. She convinced me to write the epilogue. :D