The moonlight filled up the bedroom in a faint silvery tone that cast shadows here and there. Lilith snored loudly, from the living room sofa, and both Budlore and Jessica were sleeping on Mom’s bed. Wrex was out there, in the moonlight, somewhere, and who knows why it is that dogs love this sort of thing. My theory is the light gives them the illusion there’s more to see because their vision is better. But maybe they just like it. Maybe they just enjoy the moon. At any rate, I drift off to sleep before Wrex returns, and suddenly I hear him crying to come in. Mom has gotten up and opened the door, and there’s the sound of dog nails on the floor as Wrex comes to tell me about it.
Wrex is cold. Very cold. The temperature outside has dropped, and I can feel the cold in his paws and ears. Wrex has been outside in the woods alone, and he’s hyped up about it, too. There are owls, and small mammals, and there are things in the woods. Wrex is cold yet he’s very happy about something, even if he’s happy about not being out in the cold anymore. Wrex wiggles and prances, but he’s winding down. In just a few minutes, he’s curled up beside me on the bed, drifting with me.
Lilith can be heard across the house, sawing away, loudly, her sleep deep and undisturbed. Mom had gone to bed, turned off the television, so Bud and Jessica are asleep, too. Bud isn’t going to sleep anywhere else at night, so Jessica stays with him. It’s Bud’s job to protect Mom, and any noise in the night will be barked at loudly. Jessica is a little bit more laid back, and until she’s convinced there’s something out there, she won’t raise the alarm.
Wrex has worn himself out in the woods. He dives down deep into sleep now, curled up in a tight ball beside me, his breathing clear and clean. There was a time when Wrex was a stray, many years ago, and then he was adopted by a family who gave him up after four years. He’s been here now a little over two years, and this is where Wrex will stay. The woods belong to him for many full moons after tonight, and he knows it, too.
But now I can’t sleep. The moonlight is compelling. I can see the shed in the yard perfectly, even a hint of color here and there. The woods are an alternating world of deep black shadows and silvery shine. It’s a maze of sight and blindness, of beauty and dark, a brindled world as confusing as the human mind, and just as deep.
What goes on inside the mind of Wrex Wyatt as he runs through this world of moonlight? Is it the shadows, the light, or is it the moon itself, who guides him through the night? The cold is not the element that Wrex loves, and he’s usually the first in from it. But this is a night where Wrex is compelled to run, to chase, and to pursue something in the woods, until the cold drives him back into the house and onto the bed.
What do you chase at night? What drives you to be in the woods?