The Lennox Brothers

After a flat tire lands brothers Ricky and Kai Lennox in a pitch black country lane on their way home from work, they are attacked by a beast, one which they can only describe as a 'five foot tall canine'.
In the morning, Ricky is shocked to find they are both still alive, but can't help but wonder why the beast didn't finish them off.


5. Link

    It took us about an hour to work up the courage and calmness to enter the living quarters, where, we found Link had not been lying. It wasn’t amazing but it was much nicer than the concrete dungeon he called the living quarters. There was indeed a carpet, a dark beige one, with painted cream walls, a few sofas in good condition and a small dining area complete with small table and four chairs. With a quick look around I counted about 10 other ‘slaves’. Most of them were male, I think I could only see one female, and she was napping on one of the sofas, a large hoody laying on top of her like a blanket. All of them, at some point within 30 seconds of our entrance, looked up to take in our appearances, but then they went back to their daily lives without another thought.

    I was hungry. And Kai was hungry. So the first thing we both did was beeline for the fridge. Kai tailed me, mumbling various curse words. When we reached the refrigerator, I knelt in front of and opened it. A young man, possibly a year or two older than myself, with dark hair and very tanned skin, walked over and knelt down so that I could hear him. He said:

    “Ignore the top shelf, it’s stuff that’s out of date. Link hasn’t gotten us a new shipment of food in two weeks.” The way that he said it was amazing to me, how normal everything apparently was for him.

    “OK. Thanks.” I said, and continued to look, but my mind was buzzing. They had all just glanced up at us to see what we looked like, then just carried on with their lives. There were designated shelves in the fridge. They had been doing this a while, they were all used to this, this wasn’t odd or frightening to them at all. Two weeks? They had been waiting two weeks for more food? How long did it take to sell a slave, anyway? And was the life of a slave, outside of Link’s living quarters, better or worse than the lives they had here?

    I didn’t want to give up. By God, the last thing I wanted to do was submit and accept that I was one of these people in here, a slave for sale and not only that, but a slave for sale who was content to be a slave for sale. But… By the looks of things, they had invisible guards, no visible way out, and for now, the living conditions weren’t horrible. Kai’s hand reached past my head and dragged out a can of Red Bull. I heard the signature ‘tssk!’ of the can opening and he began to down the thing. I sighed and had another look on the shelves, ignoring the top one. I settled for a granola bar for now, although I did notice a craving for meat beginning to work its way to the surface. Not that I wanted to admit that, because that would make Link right.

    “They see this a lot.” Kai’s eyes were narrowed as he scanned the room, examining the other slaves from afar. “New recruits like us. Maybe these guys are the ones who don’t get sold. For whatever reason. None of them are scared.” I looked at Kai, and with the most serious expression, asked:

    “Are you?” His eyes locked on mine for a few seconds, then he closed them and took a deep gulp of his energy drink.

    “I’m fucking petrified.” He said. He slammed down the empty can on the counter and the sharp sound awoke the napping girl. Her head raised, she peered around herself, then settled back into a comfortable position and went back to sleep. “You.” Said Kai to the young man who had warned us about the expired fridge goods. “Who are you?”


    “Hi, Jack. I’m Kai. This is my brother Ricky. We’re new to this gig, so if you could let us know what the hell is going on, that would be wonderful, okay, buttercup?” Jack’s eyebrow raised.

    “That figures.” Jack exhaled, rolling his eyes some as though this was behaviour he suddenly remembered he was supposed to expect, as if he’d heard of Kai’s reputation. “You’re the wolves. Listen - I’m not that guy.” He said, crossing his arms across his torso and leaning the small of his back on the kitchen counter behind him. “I’m not the guy that takes you under his wing and shows you the ropes. No-one here is, so you can forget that right now.” I pulled up a chair from around the table and sat down, suddenly growing a little woozy. “All you need to know, is that you’re being sold as slaves to the highest and fastest bidder. And you two? Wolves, athletic? You won’t be here long.”

    “People keep saying wolves.” Growled Kai. “This is real life, not a fucking… John Landis movie!”

    “Exactly.” Said Jack, shrugging dismissively. “This is real life. Look, I’ll cut you this one break because you’re obviously new and frightfully naïve.” Jack stood up straight, then leaned in towards Kai, too close, because Kai bared his teeth in response. Jack’s voice became low and serious. “You were both bitten by a wolf. You are now infected with the werewolf genes. That means that whenever the moon hits a certain phase, you both will change into wolves. Last night was probably your first change, you likely won’t remember much of it. The faster you accept all of that, the better. I got some reading I’m gonna get on with. Leave me the fuck alon and we’ll get on much better.” Jack walked away and I grabbed Kai’s arm before he could go after him.

    “Kai.” I said, releasing him once I knew he wasn’t going anywhere. “This is messed up. As in, super messed up. But I think he’s right in that we’re in this on our own, now. I have no idea what we should do. But-…” Kai sat down in the chair beside me and dropped his head into his palms.



    He didn’t move from that position for over three hours. I didn’t move much from my own position, unable to stop thinking, unable to stop the realisation rearing its ugly head that we were alone in this and an escape was startlingly unlikely. To distract myself, I dropped to the floor and started to perform push-ups, not stopping until I was spiralling into sheer exhaustion, somewhere around 500.

    “Wolves.” I heard a voice call, beads of sweat dripping off of my face. Kai didn’t respond to the call.

    “The hell do you want?” I replied, seeing Link was in the room, now.

    “Potential buyer. Get out here before I make you. And you know I can.” He said. Kai sighed, standing up.

    “You mean your invisible henchmen can.” He mocked with his tone, walking. I watched my brother go, noting that this was the first time I had seen him submissive in years - possibly ever. And after wiping my face on my t-shirt, I followed him. Link led us to a door I could hardly see; it was coloured and textured the same as the wall and could only be distinguished by the handle. I rubbed my eyes. My vision was less clear than usual, lately. On the other side of the door, we were brought into what looked exactly like a market. We were on the seller’s side of a market stall, basically a tall, covered table. By tall, I mean it reached the top of my stomach. The entire stall was shrouded underneath a flimsy black tarp roof of some kind and on the other side, on the buyer’s side, I saw a tall, thin woman with dark hair, pale skin, sunglasses and scarlet lipstick, holding the arm of a dumpy, semi-bald man dressed similarly to Link, but who was much shorter. “Just so you know,” began Kai, “I get horrible, rancid gas and snore pretty loud. And I break shit all the time. Butter fingers.” He shrugged. In spite of everything, I couldn’t hold back my smirk.

    “Snoring isn’t an issue.” Said the woman, in a very clipped accent. “You won’t be sleeping anywhere near us.”

    “No?” Asked Kai, and leant across the table. “Because I can go all night,” he whispered flirtily. “Does your boyfriend have these?” He lifted his shirt to reveal his well toned, muscled abs. Kai then pulled back to stand up straight, releasing the hem of his shirt and winking. The woman giggled, pushing her sunglasses onto the top of her head. I smirked again, speechless at my brother’s cockiness.

    “Link.” Her ‘boyfriend’ growled.

    “Shut up.” Hissed Link and with a crack, what I can only describe as or assume was a whip smacked my brother across the arm. A thin line of skin on his upper arm split open so quick it looked spontaneous, and blood began to flood from it like a cut in a bag of sand.

    “Ah!” Cried Kai, grabbing his arm.

    “Dick.” I growled at Link, grabbing my brother by the arm and ripping the hem from the bottom of my t-shirt. Applying as much pressure as I could, I wrapped the strip of white material around his arm and tied it like a bandage. Deep scarlet blood seeped through the white cotton.

    “Cheers.” Exhaled Kai.

    “Resourceful. Good with first aid.” Said Link to the couple, like he was trying to sell an old washing machine or used car. “What do you say? 2,350,000 kotes for the both of them. Willing to knock of that 50K for the nick on his arm and his utter rudeness.” The dumpy man eyed us both.

    “How long have they been wolves?” He wondered, bringing his hand to his chin. The thin woman’s brittle arms moved with his when he did.

    “First change last night. Just pups.” Link responded, patted my back with a cupped hand. Instinctively, I flinched away from him, not wanting him to experience the satisfaction of owning me. “They don’t have to go together.” Mentioned Link, and both Kai and I turned to stare daggers at him.

    “We won’t make it easy for you.” Snarled Kai to the couple. “It’s cute that you expect us to behave just because you shit money.”

    “A smack in the mouth should do you.” The dumpy man said. Kai snorted.

    “Please. I’ve been mauled by a giant dog. Your wussy hits don’t scare me, boy. Wanna go right now?” Kai looked at Link. “Can I, boss? Can I? Huh? Can I?”

    “You’d better shut up before I take this whip and shove it up y-”

    “Give me time to think it over.” Said the man, then harshly pointed at Kai with a finger that was a sausage. “If I give you 2.4million kotes, I want that dog devocalized.”

    “If you drop me a deposit, consider it done.” Agreed Link.

    “I’ll be in touch.”

    “Bye!” Called Kai, kissing the air at the man. The couple walked away at a leisurely pace. Devocalization. The word ricocheted around in my mind for a while. I could work out what it mean by the word alone, but I began to remember that it was a procedure cruelly performed on dogs, damaging their vocal cords irreversibly to permanently quieten them. “You can get more than that for us.” Said Kai, folding his arms and looking at Link like they were business partners, and Link, to my surprise, smiled slyly.

    “It’s cute that you think that all slaves I try to sell are well behaved and polite to potential buyers. I do this all of the time, kid. By running your mouth, you just got me an extra 50 thousand kotes on the offer and I got to whip you and I’ll probably have the pleasure of devocalizing you.”

    “… Coats?” I asked. Link’s eyes rolled as if he could see my mind spelling it wrong.

    “Kotes. K-O-T-E-S. It’s the currency on the Black Market. Come on. I’ll come and get you if anybody else comes along.” He shoved us back into the living quarters. As soon as the door closed, Kai tried immediately to open it up again, but it was instantly locked. It hardly even moved when he tried to open it, leading me to believe there was no way we would ever get through it, even if there weren’t invisible henchmen.

    “So,” Kai launched his voice across the room, “is there anyone here who isn’t a complete dick?” Nobody seemed to really take notice of him, to which he just shook his head. “I guess not.”

    “This fucking sucks.” I huffed, walking back to my chair and taking a defeated seat. Kai followed, also sitting again, though he looked more like he were thinking.

    “Devocalisation.” Said Kai, with a hint of nervousness carrying in his voice. Legs apart, elbows on knees, he clasped his hands together loosely. “Does that mean what I think it means?”

    “If you think it means they’re going to surgically mess up your vocal cords so you can’t speak above a whisper, then yes, it means exactly what you think it means.” Kai’s eyes saddened slightly, like for the first time, he was regretting his cocky nature. “They go through me before they get you.”

    “We changed.” Kai began, anxiously scratching his head. “I remember it, Ricky. I remember us changing. Before I passed out, I watched you change, you were transforming, it was-… it was just like that movie.”

    “An American We-?”

    “Yeah, that one, it looked just like that. I saw your face start to-,” he stopped scratching and instead dropped his head into his palms again. “I’m sorry for acting out. But I can’t help it. I’m terrified.” He admitted, not raising his head. “We’re not human anymore, Ricky.” Slowly, then increasing in speed, his head started to shake. “There’s something wrong with us. And did you-, fuck, I hate to say it like this, but did you smell those people out there? On the market? They smelt like Link. They’re not human either. I think Link is telling the truth. He’s a vampire. We’re-…” It was a good ten seconds before he could bring himself to say it aloud. “We’re werewolves.” Because saying it aloud meant more than just saying a word, now. Saying it aloud meant admitting it, accepting it as our new lifestyle and I wasn’t sure I wanted to. The fact that Kai could, and so soon, meant that he was a lot more mature than I as. It was more than possible I was in denial.

    And because I was so in denial, I tried not to say anymore for the rest of the day, something I managed to achieve. I tried so very fiercely to force myself to accept my new fate, but the speed in which it had all happened, the insane circumstances I had found myself in, all added up to one big shit sandwich that I was not prepare to take a bite out of. The only things keeping me going were the facts that I was with my brother, I was still alive and healthy, and I was not yet a slave. But by the way everybody was talking, Kai and I would, very soon, be sold.


    The evening fell very quickly, something I cannot explain how I knew, what with the lack of windows or a clock, but when it did, I grew very hungry, something I had not been all day. I rummaged through the fridge. Indeed, I was finding that I was craving meat, a craving that was only growing in aggression as I failed to find anything my stomach would accept. I managed to find a small pack of sliced ham, which I promptly, if you’ll forgive the wording, wolfed down. When I was finished, my craving not nearly satiated but enough to stop me feeling aggravated, I looked for my brother. I found him asleep on one of the sofas. I didn’t understand why he was tired, because I wasn’t, but I put it down to him exhausting himself via stress and worry.

    Wanting something to busy myself until we were no doubt going to be ushered back into the sleeping quarters, I was exceptionally delighted to find an old bookcase in the corner of the room. And it was full, too, not just home to a couple of crappy, dusty books. There were books in here that had been released this year. I browsed through the selection and settled on a reference book. One on mythology. It was mainly Greek and Norse mythology that the book covered, but nevertheless I couldn’t help myself in skimming the index to look see if there was anything on werewolves. I did not find anything. So I instead began to read the book just for leisure, finding myself enjoying the ancient stories, and at times noting with a sense of humour that people used to actually believe these things.

    This said, was a time I did not believe in werewolves or vampires, but they were quickly becoming a part of my life whether I liked it or not. Vampires and werewolves existed in the world. And I was a-…


I was a werewolf.


    My brother had seen a portion of my transformation the other night. I was just glad I didn’t have to see it. I was glad to have forgotten about it and to have passed out mid-change so I didn’t have to experience the pain that came with it. Because the amount I was awake to experience, I was in horrible agony. If lore was anything to go by, that was something I would have to experience every month.

    Jack said that we would change every time the moon hit a certain phase. I didn’t know what phase the moon was in last night, but I made a mental note of the date in my head to look it up if I ever made it out of this place, regardless of how unlikely it was increasingly seeming. I was over a third of the way through the book when Link returned to, as predicted, usher us into the sleeping quarters. Kai, having been asleep this whole time, just swayed into the room on auto-pilot and crashed out on his designated ‘bed’. I wished I could have fallen asleep so easily, as easily as my brother and as easily as everybody else in the room, but I was cold and uncomfortable and I missed home.

    My car was still waiting outside of Phoenix Park, and I knew that it was still there because my keys were still on my person; Link had not taken them from me. I suppose, getting as much money as he did for slaves, he didn’t need to bother looting their personal possessions. I suppose, to the other world, we had just up and vanished without a trace. It crossed my mind that perhaps this was what had happened to some of the people who just vanished and could never be found: they were being sold as slaves on the Black Market.

    With no parents and no employers, I do assume that the first person to ever notice we were  missing would be the landlord, around the time the rent was due. And since we had only paid that about a week ago, that was a good three weeks away from happening. Nobody would find us here, anyway. If they knew how to find people here, this place would have been shut down a long time ago, this place was all kinds of illegal. That, and vampires were unheard of, things of myth and folklore and bad movies. They knew how to stay hidden, and they knew how to hide things - namely slaves and giant markets.

    Link, and most of the buyers on the market spoke with British accents. London accents at that, leading me to believe that we weren’t too far from home. At least, not far enough away for the accent to change. All of this thinking had me awake for half of the night, it was Kai who woke me up in the morning. “Sleep on the sofa.” He said. “It’s way more comfortable from these things.” He tugged at the mat beneath my body. Exhausted, I decided to take him up on that offer and took ownership over a sofa as soon as we entered the living quarters. My sleep didn’t last for long, however, seeing as I was woken again what I perceived to be roughly 25 minutes later.

    “This is bad.” Hissed Kai desperately .”That guy who wanted my throat butchered is back. He’s here to buy us, man!” The shouting in a whisper tone he was using fully displayed his panic that he obviously wanted to hide from Link, who was waiting at that door for us to come over to him. “I don’t think he even brought his girlfriend along. We can’t get sold, Ricky, we just can’t!”

    “I know, I know!” I sat up. “I haven’t even finished that book, yet!” Kai cocked an eyebrow. “Sorry. Uh, look, we could-… no, never mind. Or we could-! No. Nope, nope, that’s stupid. Shit. I have no idea, Kai.” Kai’s eyes showed a sadness that explained he had given up. If I didn’t have any ideas, and he was coming to me for help, we were screwed. Simple as.

    “Let’s go, boys, I don’t have all day. People to see, people to sell, capisce?” Called Link, and it hit me that I was starting to recognize his voice as that of a master. Of course, not a master I was loyal to; just one I was too afraid of to disobey.

    “Fuck.” I whispered, getting up. Kai followed behind me, tail between legs. Not literally, you understand. Once again, we were exposed to fresh air. Waiting on the other side of the stall was the dumpy man and, sat on a stool, was a much younger, much more attractive young man with dirty blond hair and bright green eyes. He glanced up at my brother and I, and then to the dumpy man, like he was concerned, his nostrils frequently flaring.

    “Perfect.” Said our new ‘owner’, the dumpy man, smiling unnecessarily deviously at Kai. “And I want that one silenced. Do that?”

    “Give me half of the full price and I’ll have that done for you within the hour.” Promised Link, and I heard Kai swallow, beside me.

    “Wait.” Said the blond, and Kai and I looked to him pleadingly. He seemed to notice this but did not react. “You’re going to devocalise him?”

    “What’s it got to do with you, kid?” Growled the dumpy man, a scowl rendering his face far uglier than I had previously thought it could get.

    “A lot, actually.” He said, straightening his back in his chair. “Link, you never told me you had wolves.” My hopes sank. This guy was just another potential buyer. He couldn’t save us anymore than we could save ourselves. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

    “You rarely buy slaves from me, Quinter. You haven’t bought a slave from me in over 30 years.” Kai exhaled, looking from Link to Quinter and alternating between the two. Thirty years…? If they really were vampires, which I did now truly believe… then, they had to be at least fifty years old, both trapped in the bodies of young men of mine and Kai’s age. Did that mean that Kai and I wouldn’t age anymore? Did werewolves work like vampires? At least, in terms of aging? The prospect of living forever frightened me more than I cared to mention. I don’t believe that is something I could enjoy.

    “That doesn’t mean I never intended to buy one again.” Shrugged Quinter. You know, I had never delved into homosexuality and never really intended to, but it had to be said that Quinter was not an unattractive man in any sense of the word. I don’t know, perhaps it was a vampire thing to be utterly stunning.

    “If we’re gonna get sold,” whispered Kai almost inaudibly into the conch of my ear, “I’d much rather it be to the blond guy than to the guy who believes pie to be one of the essential food groups.” Not expecting this, I snorted. Everyone turned to glance at me, then continued on with their business.

    “You two,” began Quinter, in a requesting tone of voice much more placid than we had come to hear from Link. “Step back a little for me?” Quinter stood up. “Link, get outta the way.” I gulped, unsure how Link would take to being ordered around so casually, however he did indeed calmly step aside, revealing myself and my brother to Quinter. “Yes…” He pondered, folding his arms and bringing the fingers of his right hand to his lips. “Sir,” Quinter looked at the man standing beside him. “Sorry, but you’re not purchasing these boys today.”

    “Excuse me?”

    “Link, these boys are mine. They’re perfect. I need a couple of employees for the club.” He brought his fingers away from his mouth. “Bulky, healthy young wolves, they’re absolutely perfect. And I’m afraid I’m going to need both of their voices intact.” Quinter said it with a spiteful sideways glare at the dumpy man.

    “What makes you think you can just buy them? I came by yesterday, I was promised them.” I held up a hand.
    “Can I just say?” Everybody turned to me again. “I lowered my hand to my side. “If it’s all the same, we like him more.” I pointed to Quinter, who laughed softly, covering his face with his hand momentarily.

    “You don’t get to choose.” Scolded Link, through his teeth. “Shut the fuck up.” When I glimpsed Kai in my peripheral, I saw him smiling.

    “They don’t get to.” Shrugged Quinter.” But I do.”

    “Oh yeah?” Grunted the dumpy man, mouth scrunched up into an uncomfortable-looking pout. “What makes you think that, little boy?”

    “I’ve known Link for almost 80 years.”

    “Ange,” Started Link, shaking his head and folding his arms. “Much as I love ya, man, I can’t just give them to you over him because-”

    “And I’m a lot richer than you are.”

    “Hit the road, pal.” Link instructed the dumpy man.

    “You are joking with me.” He grumbled. Kai was still smiling.

    “If you can top 5 million kotes, you can have them.” Quinter announced, shrugging yet again, but his entire posture reeked of confidence. The way he spoke, the way his body language directed him exuded authority and grace. “But somehow, I believe you cannot.”

    “This is the last time,” the dumpy man growled at Link, “I buy from you, Link.”

    “Oh, fuck me!” Cried Link, rushing his forearm to his head in faux distress. “That only leaves every other member of the other world who will! Please! Please return and buy from me!” The dumpy man offered a low grunt as a rebuttal and trudged away from the stall in extreme displeasure and anger.

    “Pack ‘em up for me, Link.” Quinter tossed a black credit card onto the table from his leather wallet. Link took the card, swiped it through a small box-shaped machine and threw it back across the table, where Quinter retrieved it and slid it back into his wallet.

    “With pleasure. I’m glad I don’t have to bother with the devocalization, now. Always so messy and time consuming.” He sighed it like a weary housewife. “Be warned, though, this one doesn’t shut the hell up.” Link smacked Kai lightly on the back of the head. I suppose now we belonged to somebody else, Link couldn’t punish us as harshly as he would like to. Behind my back, I felt him take my wrists. Immediately, I attempted to counter this by struggling, but he was as strong as he had promised, and hardly broke a sweat cuffing me. “Good boy.” He said into my ear, and kissed it. I ripped away from him, hands now tightly bound.

    “Fucker.” I snarled. He cuffed Kai also, who was strangely submissive, allowing this without a fight. “Do you want us to just vault over this table?” I asked, looking and seeing no visible exit. Link sighed loudly, pulled over a cloth and revealed a hinge. He lifted a section of the table, which acted as a doorway. “Right.” Kai and I passed through the barrier. Leaving that place relieved a chunk of worried from my brain, although this only allowed space for new ones. “We coulda vaulted. For the record.” I remarked. Quinter, accepting a length of thick, black rope from Link, tied our cuffs together so that my brother and I were bound at the wrists. There was slack enough to walk side by side, but we were shoulder to shoulder at that. Quinter held onto the rope with two fingers.

    “See you later, Ange.”

    “Pleasure doing business with you, Link. See you next week.” Quinter pushed us to get us moving and we walked, obediently.

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