From the moment that the thought crossed her mind, Nadie knew that it was wrong. It was so very wrong to want to eat another human. But she didn’t want to die up here on this mountain. She was the only one with any strength left but that was waning quickly. After getting caught in the early blizzard, what food they had or could find was quickly gone and now the other two girls were not much more than shivering logs.
They did not help her brave the weather in an attempt to find food. They expected her to do it all because they were older and had decreed it so. Days without more than roots to appease an empty stomach had made them all grouchy.
It was at the most desperate hour that she had entertained the idea of turning the both of them into meals. Though hunger was beginning to make them all skinny, both of the other girls still had more fat than they did muscle.
Nadie was the one that had a knife. They spent most of their time huddled under the skins that they used for warmth during the night. As she toyed with the edge of the blade, she tried to push the damning thoughts out of her mind. To eat human flesh was to open her soul to dark magic, to invite evil spirits to change her into a creature of despicable nature.
Even so, the pains of starvation kept pushing the idea back into her mind. It was not as if the villagers would know what she did up here. This was an abandoned bear’s cave, if the bones were ever found would just be attributed to the bear. Nadie’s gaze traveled back over to the other two girls as her grip on the knife tightened.
They were sleeping again. Leaving the details of their survival to her yet again; the fire, the search for food, she was expected to take care of it. This wasn’t the village where they all helped out, oh no, this was the wild. They were going to put their laziness before survival and delegate the duties to the youngest.
But as the youngest, Nadie was stronger and faster. She would last longer without and the constant moving she did during the day to keep the cave warm and the storm out kept her warmer than hiding under skins would.
Her grip shifted on her knife as her mind pushed for survival. Standing, all it took was five quiet steps and two quick slashes before she had two large hunks of meat for her. The blood stained the warm skins but it didn’t bother her much as she dragged them one at a time towards the entrance. The cold would keep them from rotting.
When she did finally make her first meal, the smell of meat made her mouth water even as her spirit ached at what she did. A part of her still fought against what she planned to do; fought against the wrongness and begged that she stop before it was too late.
At her first bite, that part died. Her spirit screamed as she swallowed it and tore into the thigh as hastily as the dogs tore into leftovers from her mother’s cooking. Nadie didn’t care to wait for the meat to cool before she was snatching up another piece.
It was wrong. Already she could feel her humanity slipping away. A new power filled her, pushing out everything else that she’d ever known about herself. This was better. She would survive this winter. But she was so hungry.
The more that she ate, the more that her spirit broke and changed. The consumption of human flesh allowed for dark energies to take her, to change her. Many stories painted Wendigos as terrifying creatures to be destroyed and avoided. They pushed the notion that one was never to eat another human, no matter how much starvation pushed for it.
But the stories did not speak of the power. Nadie paused for a moment to stare at her skin as it changed from the tanned color she had lived with all her years to a soft gray. Her fingers shifted and changed, looking more like claws than human hands. These changes should have alarmed her but a great strength had filled her body and pushed away all doubts and fears. It was only the changes that came with her new power.
Her now glowing eyes glanced towards the two bodies still resting at the opening to the cave. Saving them no longer seemed feasible. She was too hungry. But they also weren’t going to be enough.
As she made her way over to the rest of her meal, a wicked smile curled across her lips. In this new body the cold did not bother her; it would not stop her from hunting as it did when she was weak. Somewhere around the base of this mountain, the mountain she had been sent up to forage before the winter freeze, was a village full of humans.
It wouldn’t be a very difficult hunt at all.
Here is another one for y’all that are sticking with me!
Next Creature: Tó Neinilii/Tonenili