Make any sort of mention of werewolves to most people and it will inevitably provoke imagery concerning – and commentary on – such movies as The Wolfman, Underworld, An American Werewolf in London; and The Howling. Entertaining on-screen fiction aside, however, what of werewolves in the real world? Most people are almost certainly content to brush aside such fantastic possibilities without even a second thought. But, not quite everyone…
Paradise, Texas is a small town, situated not too far from the sprawling city of Fort Worth, but one that is dominated by isolated homes, thick and somewhat mysterious woods, sprawling fields, numerous cows, and not much more at all. Aside from maybe a killer-werewolf, that is.
Dawn had just broken on a particular day in September 1996, and Walter, a rancher who had made Paradise his home, headed out to tend his cows, which had the run of a large field at the back of his property. Walter was not expecting to find the horrifying scene upon which he stumbled, however: one of his most valuable sources of income had been killed under cover of darkness. And, by the looks of what was left of the unfortunate animal, the killer had been some sort of vicious, powerful creature that surely had no place prowling the fields of Paradise. The cow had been summarily disemboweled, with its throat ripped out and both back legs completely gone.
Although Walter wasted no time at all in contacting the authorities, this turned out to be an utterly fruitless task, since the only thing the responding officers could suggest to the irate and worried rancher was that perhaps a big cat was responsible and was still on the loose. And, while this was certainly a major cause for alarm and a matter they would most definitely look into, it what not, technically speaking, a crime that required the attention of officialdom.
So, a wholly dissatisfied Walter decided to take matters into his own hands and elected to embark upon a night-time vigil, in the hope that the beast might return and he, Walter, would have the opportunity to blow the creature’s head clean off its shoulders and put an end to the matter before it risked spiraling wildly out of control.
Thus it was that at roughly 2.00 a.m. four days later, and while dutifully scanning the field with a night-scope that was attached to his high-powered gun, Walter became frozen with fear when he caught sight of a large, hairy figure striding across the field. Around seven feet in height, very muscular and dark, it had the body of a man, yet the face, the ears and the muzzle of what looked like a large German shepherd dog or a wild wolf. Rooted to the spot, Walter didn’t even think to fire his gun. Rather, he simply watched, dumbstruck with fear, as the beast covered the width of the field very quickly and vanished into the trees that bordered his property.
Rather ominously, only a short time later, and in the same exact spot where he first noticed the diabolical wolf-man, Walter found in the grass the small, stone, carved head of a large-fanged monster with slits for eyes and flared nostrils. To this day, Walter is convinced that occultists were secretly at work his field, engaged in some unholy rite or ritual, and had quite literally conjured up the beast from another realm of existence. Now, he believes, the beast is wildly on the loose in our world, free of its previous moorings, and prowling the woods and fields of Texas in search of yet more tasty morsels of the cattle kind.
And, given that Walter was there and we were not, who are we to argue with him?