This retelling of a classic fairy tale takes a completely different path over the river and through the Wood...
Excerpt from Ruby Hood, A Twistedly True TaleBy Aspen Hite
Mayor Wolf and his wife exchanged a long meaningful look that spoke volumes.
“Look, there’s no doubt Kayla’s a powerful Lycan, more than we were expecting really. And we won’t deny she has some issues, but it’s not…” The mayor paused, turning to the stairwell, just as his son waltzed through.
“Kay’s secure,” said Kellan to his father, but his eyes lingered on Ruby.
“Thank goodness,” Kassandra exhaled, bringing her hand her to heart in relief.
“Good, then she needs to be held accountable for what she’s done to my Grams and…” Ruby turned to Dylan, “What did you call it? Otherly Natural law?”
“Yes, accountability is the very least she needs. Personally, I think she should be put down like the rabid dog she is, to keep everyone safe, of course,” said Dylan, opening his jacket to display the large knife, he usually had strapped to his leg. A public establishment is not the place to broadcast a lethal weapon in Woodsville.
“Look Hunter,” The mayor growled, “this really isn’t your business.”
“As the Huntsman my Grams called to deal with your mess, I think it is.” Ruby retorted, although she had to admit, the words didn’t feel right.
“And Miss Hood,” The sharpness of the Mayor Wolf’s voice startled Ruby. “Not only am I afraid your anger is misplaced, but it’s clear you misunderstand the enormity of what we’re dealing with here, like I was saying…”
“Takes powerful magic to spell a Guardian…” Kassandra interrupted.
“Very powerful, indeed,” The mayor nodded and continued, “And quite possibly Kayla might have that kind of power one day, but not at this time. Whatever has come here, whatever has spelled your Grams to sleep, is something much more powerful and much scarier, than my daughter I’m afraid.”
“Well then, what the hell is it?” Ruby stacked her hands on her hips, but fright crept into the nook and crannies of her mind. If Kayla wasn’t the villain, then who or what was it? And what about her grandmother?
“I have a team working on a few theories, and each one…” the mayor’s voice trailed off as his shoulders stiffened and his eyes widened. He exchanged a look of horror with his family.
The Wolfs mirrored each other, each alert and ready to pounce. Ruby shuddered. They were suddenly menacing and scary. She didn’t want to imagine what they looked like in their beastly form.
“It can’t be…” Kassandra, her voice choked in alarm, adjusted her scarf over her nose, “Jed, tell me I’m wrong…”
“What is that…smell?” Kellan’s eye watered as he tucked his nose into his collar, “Jeez.”
“Damnit,” cursed the mayor, pulling a handkerchief out of his pocket to cover his own nose, “You’re not wrong, Kass…damnit,” He said again, his voice was strained with dread, “that odor… it’s unmistakable…putrid…the nose-burning scent of … Unnaturalness…and with it.. unspeakable horrors will follow...”