Neon Moon

Chapter 3

The mangled man on the pavement was dead, now in the alley, Amanda and Terry were alone with a hulking furred creature. After seeing that the flayed man was too far gone to save Amandas focus returned to helping Terry escape. He was screaming, both in pain and at the beast. She was struggling to find an opening, Terry was losing a lot of blood, and this things arms were swinging so wildly that she couldn get close. Amanda screamed and swung her knife to keep the creatures claws at a distance and sprayed her mace toward its mouth and nose.

The creature roared in fury and Terrys arm moved in a blur. His right arm came around to the front of the creatures maw and dug his fingers into its right eye. As the beast howled in pain Amanda took the opportunity to lunge forward and buried her knife into its stomach and drew the knife across its belly. Blood gushed from the wound as pieces of the beasts organs were now visible. The beast swung a heaving claw at Amandas head but came up short, however she did not expect the jaws to be following the down toward her. As the teeth of the monster dug into her shoulder she felt the weight of the beast press her toward the ground. Then another weight slammed onto her legs. It was Terry.

Terrys bulky frame tumbled onto Amandas legs and knocked her to the ground and freeing her from the jaws of the lupine beast. Terry saw the towering bastard standing over his friend and he ignored the horrible pain he was feeling. The broken mess the was his left forearm was dangling and leaking blood fast. The creatures claws had torn through his flesh like butter and he knew if he wasn able to end this they would both be dead, fast.

”Amanda crawl out from under it and goad it into chasing me. ” Terry barked attempting to formulate a plan.

Amanda did her best to scurry out from under the creatures legs as Terry dangled his massacred arm toward its face. It took the bait and bit down on the barely connected limb. He dove backward and let the creature take his arm. The pain was unbearable and the bleeding was fast. He had about thirty seconds before he would lose consciousness completely.

”Move! Move! Get as much distance as we can before it follows us. Ill need your help with a tourniquet. ” Terry said as he clutched the place a few inches above the stump. Amanda stumbled to her feet bleeding from her shoulder and adrenaline pouring through her veins.

”Got it, get to my van and well get some space. ” The pavement under her feet was a blur as she ran as fast as she could. Terry was starting to slow. She dropped her speed and supported as much of his body weight as she could on her good shoulder. Until she could get him into the back of her van. Amandas band van was parked around the block from Tinas its suspension sagged with Terrys six-foot-five-inch frame landing hard on the barely carpeted floor panel. She closed the door behind her as she piled in over the top of him and trying not to step on him. The thirty-year-old Econoline rocked as she started it and placed her cheap shoe to pedal to the metal.

After driving about half a mile toward the hospital Amanda pulled the van to a stop and jumped into the back as she turned on the overhead light. She took a deep breath and tore a long strip of cloth from Terrys shirt. He was fading in and out of consciousness. He had explained how to apply a tourniquet as they were driving, telling her to make sure to use something to twist the two-inch-wide piece of cloth tight, place it three inches above the wound, and write the time on his forehead with the letters ”TT ”. Amanda had never tried to do this before but she wasn about to let him die without trying to help him.

She had managed to stop the bleeding, although she was unsure exactly how well she had done. Amanda took a few seconds to drag his now unconscious body closer to the front so she could drive and keep a check on his pulse. She arrived at the hospital within a few minutes and rushed screaming into the emergency room. The orderlies came to the van and assisted in removing Terry and getting the contact information from Amanda. She gave them Jennies number and turned down their offer to let them check her over. She called Jennie, Terrys wife, told her she would be over to give her a ride to the hospital if she needed it. Jennie turned her down and insisted shed be there in minutes.

Amanda sat in her blood-stained van, trying to absorb what actually happened. She felt like she was still at a loss. She could feel her shoulder burning but the bleeding had stopped long ago. A man in uniform approached her van and knocked on the window. It was a police officer that had apparently been called.

”Hello, officer how can I help you? ”

”Excuse me are you Ms. Lewis? ”

”Yes, maam. ”

”You brought Mr. Green into the ER. ”

”Yes, thats correct. ”

”Were you with him when he was attacked by the animal? ”

”Yeah, we both got hurt. I got bit and he lost his arm. ”

”Where were you when you were attacked? ”

”Uh, Im honestly not one hundred percent sure. We both work at Tinas Top Shelf and it was in an alley not far from there. I could walk you there but I don think I could tell you off the top of my head Im sorry. Oh, there was another person that got attacked. Im pretty sure it was a man but I didn see his face. He was dead. ”

”Im sorry youve had this experience Ms., can you tell me what attacked you? ”

”Uh, it was bigger than a bear honestly. I don know. It was enormous. This thing towered over me and Terry and we
e both huge people. ”

”So it was a bear? ”

”No, maybe. I don know Maam. It was horrible. It had long claws, big teeth, and it smelled like fresh blood. ” As Amanda spoke she realized that the sun was beginning to rise. ”Excuse me what time is it? ”

”Five thirty. ”

”Oh, I mustve fallen asleep. If you want Maam I can show you where everything happened. Id just rather have you go there with me. If thats okay. ”

”Usually, no but since there could be another victim itd be best I suppose. Are you good to drive? ”

”Yes, Im not in too much pain. ”

”Ms., I meant are you intoxicated? ”

”No, not at all. ” The officer reacted with suspicious belief and followed Amanda down the road.

Amanda parked her van at Tinas with the patrol car pulling up behind her. She found the box shed dropped earlier, she could hear a soft snoring noise coming from the inside. She set the box in the passenger seat and ushered the officer to the alley where it all happened.

The body was still there, however, the head was gone now. Even without the head, Amanda recognized the man, just like she assumed. It was Ian.

She spent two more hours with the police officer explaining her circumstances and the identity of Ian and her relationship with him. She left the officer her contact information and begged to be allowed to leave. Shes been awake for far too long and was honestly not going to be able to sleep for a week.

Amanda was let go with the warning to stick around so she could be contacted. Finally, she would be able to rest and see everyone. She pulled the van around and in front of their apartment and made her way slowly up the steps so she wouldn wake up the little critter in her hands.

She started to dig for her keys but the door opened as soon as she made her way to the stair landing. Her brother was standing just on the other side of the door. His forehead being obscured by the doorway. He stepped outside to meet his little sister.

”Hey you
e late is everything okay? ” Harry asked in a low voice. As he held out an arm toward his visibly shaken sister.

”I-I had a bad night bub. ” Tears started to well in the corners of her eyes. ”Terry is in the hospital. We got attacked by an animal, he lost his arm to protect me. Jennie is there with him now but I don know whats going to happen. ” She leaned in and let him cradle her. Her head landing just below his chin, Amanda hadn realized how tired she really was until now.

”You
e home now. Nothing is getting in here. ” His eyes drifted toward the dried bloody wound on his baby sisters shoulder. ”Oh God, why didn you go to the hospital? ”

”It doesn hurt much. It only burns a little when I move that arm. ” Amanda said as she straightened her posture moved it slightly. ”Ill get Kaylee to help me clean it out and see if I need stitches or not. Anyone else awake? ”

”Elli is awake, Kaylees shift starts in at eleven so shell be up soon. Whats that? ” He motioned toward the box under her arm.

”Oh, ” she made a face that was equal part happy and nervous, ”youll see. ”

Amanda and Harry entered their apartment, a glorified shoebox with a shower. It was a single-room studio that the four of them had been sharing for the past six months. The kitchen/living room/bedroom was clean but cramped and host to constant noise. They all worked around the clock and were constantly coming and going. Elli was sitting next to the air conditioner with her puppy in her lap and drinking a cup of coffee. Kaylee was curled up on the ”bed ”, which was a California king mattress that the three girls shared while Harry kept an old military style cot next to them.

Amanda waved for Elli to come over to the barely existing kitchen table and sit down with her. Harry stood to the side and loomed over the two. Elli was almost the smallest thing in the room rivaled only by Moxie her teacup poodle. Amanda slowly opened the box and revealed the tiny sleeping form of a baby raccoon. Elli covered her mouth to avoid screaming and waking up the two sleepers in the room.

”Oh my god, its the cutest goddamn thing Ive ever seen! ” Elli whispers brushing her long dyed blue hair out of her face. Her eyes snapped wide when she saw Amandas shoulder. ”Oh my god sweetie what happened? ” As she talked Moxie paced around the box on the table and sniffed at the cub.

”Animal attack. Would you mind helping me get this thing cleaned up? ”

”Yeah, shower yourself off put on a tank and Ill help you patch yourself up. You have to tell me everything that happened. What were you saying outside about Terry? I know you guys are close is he okay? ”

Amanda took Ellis hand and pulled her in and grabbed her brother, hugging both of them. ”I love you guys, Im gonna shower and then well figure out what to do. ”

After gingerly was stripping away the leather top from her body, Amanda took a good look at the dried blood and hoping it wouldn be too painful to wash off. She slipped off the rest of her clothes and showered while avoiding getting much water into the wound. After she was finished she soaked a rag in warm water and lay it across the angry red wound.

After she got dressed in a white tank top and a pair of running shorts she brought the first aid kit to the kitchen. Elli was wearing gloves and motioned for Amanda to sit down. Elli let the rag soak while preparing some peroxide and iodine to make sure everything was nice and clean. Ellis tiny hands delicately removed the rag and inspected the damage.

”Wow, ** whatever this thing was man. That is rough. Okay, Im gonna pour a little peroxide, itll burn. ” She did, and it definitely did.

”Well, at least its not as bad as it was when it happened. ”

”Okay, heres the distilled water. So what was it? ”

”I don know, it was bigger than a black bear and looked like a wolf in the face. Id say it was a werewolf if that was a thing. ”

”Well, just don kill me okay. ” She made a kissing noise with her mouth. ”Okay heres the iodine. ”

”Ahhh, okay that hurt, ” Amanda said as she covered her mouth to keep from yelling. Harry stood over them watching like a mother hen and pacing.

”Okay there we go, but you should really have gone to the hospital. ” Elli stood on her toes and hugged the seated Amanda around the neck.

”Thank you so much, Harry can you watch things for me while I get some sleep. Im sorry but Im just. Just… I need sleep. ” Amanda made her way to the massive mattress on the floor and wrestled a portion of the covers away from Kaylee as she let the heaviness black of dreamless sleep take her.

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