Since eons past, the small village of Rainfort had stood on the very farthest southern border of the land of Norwall. It was a small village, insignificant yet left alone. It was a village trapped in history. No one left the village and no one went in. The only thing that ever escaped its hold was the stories of magic and the unseen world. Perhaps the most fearsome tale was that of the Nightwalker. An ancient beast that many said had walked the earth since the last time the moon goddess had touched the earth. Most of those stories were made to scare the young of village and keep them from wandering beyond the borders of safety, but every story begins with a speck of truth, something Bryce knew better than anyone for he was the one they called Nightwalker.
He walked through the forest that night, walking about in the cursed form of the night. He stalked the village’s border, eyeing the quiet hamlet. The magic that surrounded it prevented his wolfish form from entering. He was trapped within the outside world, locked away from humanity and the outside world. Only when the moon magic was weakest could he enter. Tonight it was strong; it almost singed him from being this close.
He turned from the village into the forest. He was hungry and night was the easiest time to feed. It had always been this way for him: he hardly remembered what life had been like before. One mistake, one action had left him cursed. An abomination forever trapped by a power greater than any human force. The magic that controlled his life was not the kind that children dreamed about. It was a black magic that moved with the darkness. Tonight it was weak.
He glanced heavenward in that moment, praising the full moon. It was the light of the moon that eased his suffering, the brighter the moon, the less he suffered. The dead moon, or new moon as humans called it, was when the curse showed its full power.
Noise from the bushes caught his attention and he turned to it. A creature foolish enough to stir while he walked these old paths forfeited its life. He did not wait for it to reveal itself. The bushes shook as he lunged into them, landing on the deer that hide within. He did not prolong the battle: it was over in minutes. The animal soon lay at his feet, blood dripping from his jaws. He picked it up and headed for his den. It was not a long walk. When he arrived, he dropped the animal and went to the small pool by his sleeping hole. Old human habits still plagued him from days long past, the need to wash specifically. He cupped his hands and splashed water onto his muzzle, rinsing away the blood. It didn’t make sense to wash before eating, not when it made him only dirtier yet he could not dissuade himself from it.
The light of the moon highlighted his light grey fur, the same color as his human hair. It also showed his inhuman shape. It was not man, but not wolf. It could not be classified as any known creature. He had the long hind legs of wolf, yet human torso. His hands still functioned as they ought to, yet they grew claws where nails should have been. His face was his, yet a wolf’s with a grizzly muzzle full of razor sharp teeth. He was covered with fur, though it grew thicker in various places. The only clothing he bothered wearing any longer was a pair of trousers. This was how he was at night.
His red eyes searched the horizon, noting how close to morning it was getting. The sun would reveal his human form, but the beast never left. It would come and go as the moon shifted through its phases. The beast would be silent for the next few days while the moon remained small. It would grow in power as the moon ripened. He turned from the moon and began his meal, feasting while he was still beast. It was much easier to eat the raw meat as a beast than to go through the trouble of eating it cooked as a human.