The Wolf Child

She is foaming at the mouth. There is nothing I can do. Nothing we can do. It happens. I know it happens. Just not to us, because this is our first and our only born. I didn’t see her future this way. I knew the risks. Of course I knew the risks. It’s just it had been such a long time. There had been none for so long. I thought we were safe, that we had somehow ‘bred it’ out, instead its mine to own.

She hates vegetables, has always hated vegetables. When she was seven a dentist told me her teeth were odd. We never went back. I knew then. I tried not to, but I knew. She loathes her grandmother’s cat, that’s on her fathers side. On my side, even now we all have an aversion to cats. It runs stronger in my family. It makes me feel like I am to blame.

Keep her? Of course I would like to keep her-but how? She was born for the wild and the call of it grows daily. She is barely able to sit still in class, her hair is long and ‘free range’. There is nothing I can do. She lingers by the meat in the supermarket, I can’t take her there anymore. . She gnarls her teeth and foams at the mouth, the scent of fresh meat is everywhere-summer barbecues drive her mad. Her bed looks more and more like a den every day. She sleeps curled up in a ball at the corner.

Then there are human moments, moments where she looks at me as if to say-mummy what is happening, help me, please explain? But I can’t. There are no books, nothing in the library, no pages that set it out. She is wilding up. One night she will simply run out into the wilderness and never return. Of course we must facilitate it. We will move from here, London is no place for the wild creature we have. We know it must be done but we have not discussed it. As it gets closer we will move. Maybe Scotland, Wales, there is a distant cousin I have heard of there, maybe Europe-the wolves are back there now? Persecuted but returned and she will be more clever than your average wolf. She will after all still carry all that human knowledge in her head-I tell myself.

Somewhere out there in the darkness, she will howl at the moon. Alive in the wild, she will morph fully into what she is, live her life happily tearing apart sheep. I had hoped for something different. But it is not to be. We must go soon. I know we must go. 

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