"The wings of transformation are born of patience and struggle."
Dawn Wyatt was bitten.
Its powerful jaws sank deep through her skin into the muscle.
Lying on the bathroom floor in a pool of blood, she was in a trance-like state. The metallic smell of the sanguine fluid hung in the air. Her body immediately convulsed in vendetta as though some poison was injected in it.
Dawn Wyatt was a star golfer. That morning when she drove her car into the main gate of the course, the guard, Geoffrey, greeted her and ran after her car as it entered the driveway. "Good morning, Miss Dawn," he said with a wide grin, half-panting.
"Morning!" Dawn beamed at the guard as she alighted her chauffeur-driven silver luxury Porsche and adjusted the marker on her pink cap. The morning rays of sunlight fell on her sun-kissed, dimpled cheeks, radiating her lovely aura. Her close-set green eyes sparkled, which her mother would often quip and compare to a rare green emerald she had bought from Yorkshire. Her shiny black hair was neatly tied into a ponytail. Wearing a white collared t-shirt, a pink sports skirt, and a pair of white golf shoes, she looked every bit a winner—a cute one albeit.
"Let me carry your golf bag," Geoffrey offered, feeling joyous at her pleasing behavior.
"Oh no Geoffrey!" she exclaimed as she hurled the bag on her shoulder. "I don't want your back to be injured any more than what it is."
Old Geoffrey gave her a kind smile. He adored this girl ever since she was a small baby. She was always so considerate, and thoughtful. However, there was one flaw about her that scared him and many others—her short temper.
Dawn walked past him with a smile and went to the clubhouse.
She was going to play on probably one of the most beautiful golf courses in the country owned by her father. Other than this, her father owned several other prominent businesses. He was one of the most influential and feared men of the nation. As a result, Dawn was born with a silver, no, a golden spoon in her mouth. However, none of the privileges she was born with showed in her behavior. She was a well-grounded girl without an ounce of arrogance or brattishness. She also had one passion—golf. Dawn immediately fell in love with the sport when she was only four years old.
The Wyatt Golf Course had a well-structured academy, which helped her flourish her passion. At eighteen, she was a prodigy of the sorts. She had won most of the feeder rounds across the country, and just two days back, she had returned home after winning her first nationals. Based on her consistent performance, she was nominated by the Sports Council to represent her country in Irish Open Championships.
Born and brought up in an extremely affluent environment, Dawn did face her share of mockery and smarmy remarks after winning the trophy.
It was no different today. While playing with her usual group, she heard them talking in hushed tones about nationals being rigged because of her father's influence. She ignored the gossip and concentrated on her game and her coach who instructed her constantly.
She had been holding her bladder ever since the past three holes, and as soon as her group reached the ninth hole, she made a dash to the bathroom. But just before leaving, she glanced at the three girls who watched her bitterly and started to gossip about her again. They snickered. One of them was Bree, her only rival in the academy— though Bree was nowhere near her, in terms of skill, but was a bitter adversary.
In the past, in order to insult Dawn on purpose, Bree had tried to establish many times that she had not followed the rules of golf. Often that led to bitter arguments and disputes, which furthered into the two of them getting heavily penalized by the management for inappropriate behavior.
When Dawn was putting in the ninth hole, she heard Bree whispering acerbically to a girl in the group, "I am extremely sure that she won it because of twisting the results in the nationals. She must have used her family's clout.
"Who knows? That could happen," the girl replied with a shrug.
Dawn took a deep breath as if trying to swallow her anger. Enough was enough. She walked up to them. When she an earshot away, said harshly, "I don't take kindly to these types accusations, Bree. If you dare, then report your nonsense and illogical observations about me to the sports council. Also, with the way you played during the last few holes, I can see how your fragile understanding of the game shattered your chances of making a cut during the feeder rounds, let alone the nationals."
Bree's mouth fell to the ground. "You-" she rasped. Yet before she could collect her face from the ground, Dawn walked away, leaving Bree flushed with eyes bulging like a toad.
As Dawn strode, she tried to calm herself. Bree was increasingly getting on her nerves. She wriggled out of her negative thoughts with a "Brrrrrr!" sound making her lips flap. All of a sudden, an eerie feeling that someone was watching her descended upon her. She tried to shrug it off.
No one is watching you.
No one is staring at you.
Keep still and keep walking.
The feeling of being watched was especially uncanny to her, due to the fact that she hated attention of any kind, being subjected to it most of her life. She was so private that she had used her father's influence to prevent her picture from being shared in the public as much as possible.
Even though she tried to convince herself to remain as calm as possible, she couldn't help checking. Halfway through her brisk pace, she peeked to her left—in his golf cart, Mr. Higgins, Bree's father, had turned his face in her direction. His eyes bored into her as if they were trying to create a crater in her body. Dawn flinched, hoping that he would drop his scrutiny, but he didn't. So, Dawn pursed her lips and continued to walk. She broke into a sprint to the bathroom hoping to get out of his sight soon.
Moments later, she walked to the basin to wash her hands, feeling relieved and positive. She flitted her eyes around. The lemony fragrance of the aromatic oils in the diffuser refreshed her senses.
The bathroom was exquisitely built. The marble was specially imported from Italy. All the plants were kept in golden pots. White fluffy hand-towels were placed near the basin for hand-wiping purposes.
Dawn picked one up and was drying her hands when, from the corner of her eye, she saw a reflection in the mirror—something hairy.
Someone was standing right behind her.
Her brain stuttered for a moment, as her eyes couldn't take in what she saw. Every part of her body froze. She tilted her head to get a clear view of the reflection, wondering if she was imagining things. But it was really, truly there: a man—no—a beast, whose face and hands were covered with long, dense and grey hair like that of a wolf. He stared at her with the yellow of his eyes.
She dropped her towel as her mouth fell. Her body quivered at the sight in terror. She noticed that the creature was huge and gross with matted hair. Standing on its knotted haunches, it stared at her with its wrinkly face in a pure evil way.
It let out a low growl, and despite it being a warm day, Dawn's skin became icy cold. The second her flight reflex took over, her body exploded into motion. She turned to flee, a primal scream choking in her throat. Dawn bumped into the counter, knocking the mini-plant to the ground and tripped over the rug. The door was ten meters away, perhaps less. She got up to dart through it, but the instant her limbs moved, she also heard him moving swiftly. Before she could even take another step, the beast attacked her.
The monster came from the side and clamped onto her leg. She kicked it with all her might, not realizing that her body was trembling and there were tears in her eyes. Dawn shouted, "Let go of me!" She looked at the door. "Someone, please help!"
The creature struck her with his hands. She was pushed to the wall near the counter. Her head hit it with a thud. Gasping for air, she booted the monster with all her might.
"Help!" she shouted again, finding her voice.
Suddenly, she heard footsteps in the aisle outside. In order to garner attention, she opened her mouth wide to shout as loudly as possible, but it was too late—the beast grabbed her leg, dragged her near him and dug its sharp fangs into her calf. An excruciating pain cruised through her body. The next instant, she felt dizzy, as if some poison was running through her veins.
Dawn had been bitten by a werewolf.
She started feeling faintish. Her vision blurred. The footsteps outside came closer. Through her half-open eyes, she watched the beast giving her a creepy look before it escaped through the window. It climbed the rooftop of the adjoining building and disappeared.
The door opened, but she didn't know who had entered. Her body revolted. It was flushed hot. She passed out, blood oozing out of her wound and flowing like a crimson river.