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My Home, My Castle

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Estimated reading time — 16 minutes

You know life can be really strange. It can be really strange to those of us that choose to live out were few people do. You see, I live out in the deep woods in an area of the USA that I would rather remain nameless. For context I will say I am a divorced veteran, shocking I know, that came out to the woods to escape all the BS I had to deal with. Now that my children are grown I don’t have to worry about them, and since I never married again it is just me and the dogs. I received a rather large chunk of money due to an inheritance and was able to build this house close to the exact way I wanted it.

Life can turn out alright when your day consists of working in your own fields, tending your animals, and playing with the dogs. To be clear my dogs are not for company. They are Alaskan Malamutes, also known as sled dogs, and are mainly for keeping unwanted animals out of my crops. They do a great job of it too. In most cases they sleep all day because they have been running critters off all night.

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That is until one night was a bit different. I woke up to my exterior lights coming on. They are motion lights so this usually isn’t a big deal. In many cases it is just the dogs running something past the house. I could usually hear them barking as they run past, but there was no noise this time. This put me on edge as I waited to hear the dogs chase off whatever it was that tripped the lights. For about a minute there was no sound, not even shuffling around the house. I started to have my PTSD kick in, as I felt something was off, when I suddenly heard loud noises.

It was the unmistakable sound of wood splintering and chickens going nuts. In a moment I was out of bed and grabbed a rifle. Given the area I am in I have to worry about some rather large animals so the rifle I grabbed was a lever action 30-30. Kicks pretty hard, but has some serious impact on target. I didn’t even turn on any lights in the house as I ran to the door and swung the side door open. I raised the rifle expecting a bear, a coyote, or even a mountain lion. What looked back at me, in a sort of stunned silence, was one big ass wolf. Its fur was almost completely black and those yellowish eyes looked back at me with a bit of shock as though it didn’t expect anyone to be home, let alone armed. In its teeth was one of my chickens and in its left hand was another.

Without any hesitation I aimed and began to fire. The rounds impacted around the chest of it as it stood up. I paused for a moment because I never expected a wolf to stand on its hind legs. That is when I realized that it wasn’t a wolf, at least not totally. It was much more humanoid in shape as it stood up just as the bullets began to rip into its flesh. I only paused for a moment before continuing my shots. Though I quickly found myself out of ammo.

Even after taking over six shots to the torso this thing was still alive. As I reached into the ammo pouch on the butt-stock it turned to me and I swore I saw it smile. As I reloaded I could see that even though all the rounds had connected only one had actually caused obvious damage. It was enough that its right arm was essentially useless but there was still enough of it left to ruin my night.

It slowly got back up and began to purposely walk slowly toward me. It growled as it got closer believing that even if I began to fire again the bullets wouldn’t have enough to take it down. It was right, those first bullets were not enough. Those were the cheap ammo I used on unwelcome animals. Normally the sound of one shot is enough to make them run to the next county. What I kept in the ammo pouch was another story all together. These were high end piercing rounds with at least 20 more grains behind them. That may not seem like much, but with the different shape of the bullet it was more than enough to do the job.

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As I was shoving the rounds into the tube the wolf thing got a big shock. The dogs had been woken by the noise and had come running. They lunged at this thing and began to savagely tear at it. With most of the use of its right arm gone, and at least one of the dogs tearing at the other, the best it had was to thrash around and try to shake the dogs off. I finished reloading and tried to get a shot, but the fucker wouldn’t hold still. Then I got a lucky break. One of the female dogs decided enough was enough and clamped down on the creatures junk. It gave out a horrible howl as it reared up in pain. I took this moment to empty the rifle into its back.

Though my own shoulder made me a thousand promises of pain later, every shot penetrated the hide with at least one going clean through. It slumped down onto its knees and didn’t even act like it felt the dogs ripping parts of it off. Then with one final wheeze it fell over and even the dogs began to relax a bit. I wasn’t going to take any chances. I ran into the house and grabbed a shotgun. I quickly loaded some slugs and put at least three through its head, spraying its brains all across the yard.

So there I am standing over the body of this, whatever it was, with the dogs around it wagging their tails at a job well done. All of us naked to the cool night air as we were looked this thing. Yeah, I didn’t mention I sleep that way. Probably what scared/surprised this thing so much when I opened the door.

I gave all the dogs praise, and head pats, before checking them for injuries. Aside from some light scratches the dogs where fine. I went inside to turn on all the lights and to get clothes on. My exterior lights lit up the surrounding area so that we could see as though it was noon. I took a few pictures and carved off a few pieces to put in the freezer. Not that I was going to eat this thing, but I needed proof of what happened. I had to admit that even though it was truly dead I felt chills just touching this thing.

I had to get the bucket loader from the barn to pick this thing up. Even shot up it was far too heavy for me to lift or even drag. I got it into the bucket by digging into the ground a bit. It wasn’t easy, but it did end up flopping in so I could dispose of it later.

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By the time this was all over it was morning so I could get on the radio and called into the sheriff. Cell phones are very hit or miss around here, at least until that new 5G comes in, so we are limited to radios. He said he would be out there with animal control in about two hours.

Four hours later he rolls in with the animal control van right behind him. I walked over to meet them and I must have looked as tired as I felt because the first thing the sheriff said was “Wow, you look like shit.” Always did appreciate his candor about things. We chatted for a while before the female animal control officer got annoyed and demanded to see what I had killed. The way she was acting I could tell she didn’t want to drive the whole way out here just to look at a dead wolf. It also looked like she was ready to hit me with as many fines as possible just for ruining her day. She wasn’t thinking that when they looked into the bucket.

The sheriff was at a loss for words for the first time since I’ve known him. The animal control officer was stunned for a second and the proceeded to vomit next to the backhoe. All I could think of is ‘how I’m going to get in the damn thing now that she puked next to the cab’.

“Well?” I asked “What do you think?”. The sheriff looked up and had the most serious of expressions on his face. He slowly asked “This was the only one?” I was puzzled and replied “Yeah, why?” He came back with “Wolves travel in packs. If it was by itself you might have just come across a lone wolf.” He backed away from the carcass “You are pretty damn lucky to only face one. Any more and they would have had you before you could scream.” My training kicked in again as I asked “You sound as though you’ve faced this sort of thing before?” With a bit of regret on his face he answered with “A long time ago. Perhaps a story for another time though.” With that we started the process of getting the ripe carcass into the van. It took some work but eventually we got it in.

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The rest of the day was rather uneventful. It was back to the same routine, although having to rebuild the chicken coop from scratch was not fun. Thankfully I had enough materials around to get something done before the sun went down. It was a relaxing evening of a good meal and a decent movie to watch. I tried to get to sleep early because I figured the next day would be just as busy. However, due to last night’s events, I had my PTSD cracked up to 12. I thought that tonight I would sleep in my gear. Maybe that will help me sleep, and I was right. Sleep did come easier than expected. However, it would not last.

I woke up to sounds of the dogs barking up a storm. I got out of bed and immediately went to the computer to check the cameras. Since they all had night vision I could see everything. I can see the dogs on the porch lined up barking into the darkness. I could see the cattle, horses and pigs all restless in the barn or in their pens. Then I saw what was making them so nervous.

Several of those ‘things’ were stalking in the darkness. They didn’t know I could see them, but I did. I flipped on the exterior lights, giving a full 360 degree illumination around the house. I opened the door and let the dogs in. Normally they wouldn’t come into the house unless called but this time they scrambled over each other to get inside. I didn’t turn on the internal lights because the externals gave me enough light to move around without an issue.

I returned to the monitors to see where they were going. A few started to test the doors to the barn. I smiled a little as I hit the deterrent. By deterrent I mean the bear spray that was set up near the entrances in case an actual bear tried to break in. It happened once before and the spray sent that furry fart running. In fact, that is when I started getting the dogs. This time one of those things looked right at the nozzle as it dropped down and got hit right in the face. The other two didn’t get hit directly, but close enough that they were howling in pain. I just had to chuckle a little at this. There was a similar instance with the pigs as well. The only difference is one thought he would be smart and just jump into the pen. Oh what a bad idea that was.

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You see my pigs are not purchased, but captured feral hogs. If you ever talk with a hog hunter in the US they will always tell you to never, and I mean never, corner a hog. These ones still had their balls and their tusks. That wolf thing reached in to grab one and two big males charged it. They began to gore at it, taring large lacerations up and down its legs and body. Another one tried to run up but I hit the spray and it dropped outside the pen rubbing its eyes. The one inside the pen never made it out. The pigs just kept tearing at it long after it was done. Another creature tried to go in and get the first one out, but thought twice as the pigs charged and gored one of its legs.

While this was going on I could see the ones at the barn give up and head toward the house. It was truly showtime. As I watched the monitors I verbally cursed myself for not being down in the bunker. Yes I am one of those guys if you haven’t figured it out by now. I could have controlled this fight from inside of it up to this point. I cursed myself again for not having an entrance attached to the house like the installer recommended. Would have made this so much easier, but I didn’t have time to think about this now. Things were about to get very sporting.

The creatures seemed hesitant to get within range of the exterior lights. I kept watching and it only seemed like there were four left. Really wishing I had someone to watch the monitors for me I watched as they stalked around and eventually began to throw large stones at the lights. It took a few shots but soon the lights began to go down. The dogs were freaking out around me as the lights began to go out one by one.

I had my NODs (night optical device) ready as they began to slowly approach the house. I cursed a little bit again as I realized the only reason they were taking their time was to check for traps. In truth the only thing I had around the house were thorny bushes. This might not even slow them down.

Suddenly I heard a loud thump. I spun around and could see the main window shaking. It wasn’t broken, but something had hit it for sure. Then I saw something large hit the window and bounce off. It was a furry body bashing it trying to break it. With another hit, this time claws first, it damaged the window. I steadied myself and pushed against the side of the doorway and waited. I knew the next hit would come soon but what came next…

One of them smashed through the window and right into my sofa crushing it under its weight. I turned on the flashlight on my rifle and illuminated the thing. It was a bit confused at what it had just gotten itself stuck into. The dogs instantly charged and began to rip into this thing as another jumped inside. I turned my rifle to it and began to unload into its face. I should mention that this was not the 30-30. This was a scar heavy with armor piercing incendiary rounds in the magazine. I make them myself. Difficult materials to work with but oh so effective.

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I began to empty the magazine into it as it yelped in pain, then cried out in agony. You see the rounds could pierce the hide, but since they didn’t always exit at least half of the rounds sat in the body and burned at around 4000-5000 degrees Fahrenheit. Any organs that were touched were being cooked inside the body. I would have put all thirty rounds into it right then but one of the my dogs was thrown past my line of sight from the fight they were having with the first one of those things. I quickly turned and put the rest of the magazine into the creature’s face. This time the ammo cooked the creatures brain. It grabbed its head and toppled over as smoke trailed out of its face.

I looked over and saw that one of the dogs was split in two and another lay motionless on the floor from being thrown. I didn’t have time to mourn as I suddenly heard the door get smashed down. I spun around to see another one coming in. I went to shoot, but I was out of ammo. I quickly went to reload, I dropped the mag and raised the rifle to reload, but when I did that thing swung its massive clawed hand and tried to eviscerate me. It flung me back into the far wall with an insane amount of force. The only reason I didn’t see what my guts look like is level 4 body armor. I should really get some more of this stuff. As I tried to get my bearings it began to walk at me with rage in its eyes. Though that rage was quelled as the rest of the dogs began to rip into it. One on each leg made it fall to all fours. It began to thrash and claw at the dogs giving me enough time to reload. I aimed in just the right time for it to turn and face me with its face in a sneer/roar face. I began to shoot and I swear that the first one went right between the eyes and out its ass. I didn’t stop shooting until it stopped moving. That is when I realized another one was in the doorway but hesitated because of the shots coming its way.

I got up and called the dogs to the second floor. They went without question and I went up the stairs backwards so that I could keep an eye on the doorway. Sure enough one came charging up after me and received almost a full magazine for its trouble. I breathed a sigh of relief since that was number four. Well it was, but that wasn’t all of them. Another one made its appearance and got several shots from me as it tumbled back down the stairs. I reloaded as I kept a watch on the stairs. Nothing else came up. So, at that point, I could assume they are changing their tactics.

Damn, I hate being right so much.

The next thing I knew something came crashing though the skylight. Great, the only window that wasn’t reinforced. It only took a moment to spin and find my left arm, and the front of my rifle, being held by one of these things. It growled as it opened its mouth, presumably to bite my head clean off, when I released my right hand and drew my pistol. The bullets were not incendiary but I figured if I put them down its throat… I pulled my .45, loaded with Teflon coated rounds, and fired right down that fucker’s throat. It let go as it began to cough up blood. The dogs got into the action as they grabbed any exposed bits they could grab. I don’t think the thing cared since it was chocking to death on its own blood. When the pistol went black on ammo I dropped it and raised my rifle. I proceeded to pump its face full of rounds. I then reloaded both my rifle and pistol as quick as possible and got ready for the next round.

That is when I received the biggest shock. I heard, what sounded like a hammer click on a revolver. I looked up and there was a young, and frankly beautiful, woman was standing on my roof holding a pistol. She looked down at me and began to point the weapon at me. I hesitated slightly before I raised my rifle and we fired simultaneously. I felt the shock hit my armor first, then the side of my helmet. She fired at least twice and I got about three rounds off in the matter of a second or two.
One of the bullets had hit my armor and deflected into my leg. It wasn’t deep, but I wouldn’t be running any marathons any time soon. I barely got to my feet as I was looking up to the skylight. Part of the females body, her right arm her head and a quarter of her torso, were hanging into the broken skylight while the rest lay on the roof. A lot of blood was dripping from the roof so I figured I got her. Though it confused me why she would be here. Curiosity go the better of me and I reached up and grabbed her hand and pulled, hard.

The body landed on the floor with a thud. I looked and she was very attractive for a woman that just tried to kill me. That thought brought me back to my senses and I began to look around for others. I didn’t want to stay in this room because of the huge hole in the roof. We backed up into the only room available, the upstairs bathroom.

We waited and watched for another one of those things to make an entrance. While we waited I bandaged my wounds and reassured the dogs that everything would be alright. We stayed there until the sun came up.

When it did we made our way downstairs to survey the damage. Man did these things mess up my house. I remember thinking how it would take weeks to get things back in order. The roof was clearly damaged, the main window was destroyed along with the back door, and anything that didn’t have blood and claw marks was full of bullet holes. I thought the ordeal was over but as I entered the living room I received a shock.

One of those things was crawling toward the window using just one arm. The other arm, along with one of its legs, had been severely damaged by bullets. Another bullet seemed to have punctured its torso. From the way it was moving I’m pretty sure the spine was damaged. I had to figure that it was one of the two that charged the stairs. However, I wasn’t as concerned with it as I was with the dog that had been thrown across the room. I checked to see if by some miracle it was alive. No dice.

Now when you are being trained in combat arms you hear a lot about how to never take the job personal. You have to keep it professional or else you will lose focus on the mission and get yourself in deeper than you want. It can also eat you up inside until there is nothing left. With the loss of one of my dogs by massive blunt force, and the other in two pieces on the other side of the room, the professional in me took the rest of the morning off. I walked over to the crawling creature and kicked it over so it was facing me. It was clearly in pain and yelped when it flipped over. As it did I shoved the muzzle of my rifle down its throat. Its eyes widened as I stood over it. “You killed my dogs.” was the last thing it heard.

With that the fight was over. I then had time to dig the bullet out of my leg, call the sheriff, and bury my saviors. I was finishing up burying the last one when the sheriff rolled up with about a dozen vehicles in tow. I limped over to him and he didn’t even ask what happened to my leg aside from if I was bitten. He asked to see the house and we walked.

I had to stop half way and ask who the hell were the people following us. The sheriff assured me that they were “just the right people to handle this sort of thing”. We surveyed the damage and the extra people immediately started taking notes, pictures, video, and checking the entire property. They were a bit put back when I mentioned there was one in the pig pen. Though their eyes lit up when they saw that I had CCTV cameras on the interior and exterior of the house. One of them started to disconnect the computer when I pulled my pistol. The sheriff had to calm the situation by being the mediator. Things calmed down when he asked if I could make them a copy of the past two days. I simply responded with “Get an external drive. A simple memory stick won’t be enough.”. Surprisingly the guy left and came back about three minutes later with an external hard drive. He tried to pull a fast one by attempting to upload a virus that would wipe my computer once the download was complete, but this only led to an error message on his device. Call me paranoid if you want, but I never trust someone I just met. When he came back with a clean one the download went smooth.

In the middle of the download we all hear one of the guys yell “Holy Shit!”. We all run up the stairs to see him standing over the body of the female. Everyone looks dumbfounded so I asked “Okay, somebody explain to me what the hell is so interesting?” The sheriff explains “Well you see these creatures are always led by a pack leader. For most of them it is a female. Just like so many royals they like to send in the troops while they sit on the sideline. That way they can pick and choose their mates out of the strongest. It is rare to find one, and even more rare to take one out. Without the she-wolf the pack cannot reform, it is gone for good.”. I was a little put back and said “How do you know this is one?”. They opened her eyes and the canine yellow eyes are unmistakable. Okay, that one made me a pause a bit.

A little while later I was talking to the sheriff while the medic that was making sure I was okay when I asked “Well it is good that everything worked out though I just have to wonder how I will afford to fix my house?” The medic chimed into the conversation with “I’m sure you will get paid very well for your efforts along with the bounty on that she-wolf.” the sheriff added “He’s right. Besides I know a few people that would be very interested in employing you. You clearly have one hell of a resume.” He chuckled motioning to the house.

I started thinking about it as soon as they said it. I am now looking over the house. They took the bodies, at least what was left of them, and cleaned up rather nicely. They didn’t fix any of the holes or damage from the violent entries. They did make a phone call and get me my hush money. Oops, I mean ‘bounty’ for taking out all those crazy things. As I look at the house, petting a dog with each hand, I can only think of one thing. ‘Guess I’ll call the building contractors tomorrow.’

Oh, and if you are wondering why I never called those things the word you’ve been thinking this entire time. It is because they don’t really look like what you would think. Some looked more ‘fox-ish’ while others looked more like Rottweiler, and even one that looked like a great Dane. Also they were different sizes too. It was kind of like if someone was playing with a CRISPR formula but was random with the ingredients.

Anyway, I’m not sure if I should call the sheriff’s friends or not. Though right now I have bigger concerns. I really need to get the bunker hooked up to the house, and get stronger windows. Oh, and a steel door this time.

Credit : Sin117

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