As we all know some things are harder
to do then others. One of the hardest things to do is to remain
easy to be a good guy, even easier to be a bad guy. But walking
on the grey line that separates white from black is one of
the hardest things to accomplish in the modern world. John
Lock was one of the few truly neutral people in the modern
era. He had no religion, no preference, no hate, he kept to
himself. He truly was one of the biggest loners in the entire
country. This equation seems to add up to a very boring person.
But Johns life changed forever on a lonely night. He
ended up being another person in the wrong place at the wrong
It was February the 15th, John was "somewhere" in
upper Minnesota, enjoying one of his few hobbies, snowmobiling.
He had spent many winters in his home state of Wisconsin enjoying
the trails, but this year the winter was very mild, he had
to travel north to find decent snow. It only took him a few
minutes to realize he was glad he had drove north. Unlike in
Wisconsin the Minnesota snowmobilers simply rode were they
pleased. There were few houses or people to bother and no need
to mark any trails in the vast ocean of snow. John was not
used to such freedom, he liked it, and he liked it so much
he began to forget what the gauges on his snowmobile read.
It was nearly 11:00 o clock at night; John was cruising across
a bare plain of pure white snow. The small two-stroke engine
screamed, the speedometer read 50 MPH and was still climbing.
Then with out warning the engine began to cough and wheeze.
The warning lights began to flash, and slowly the machine lost
speed. The engine let out a few more pops and wheezes in its
death throws and then fell silent, with no electric power the
lights also defused.
"Dammit, not now!" John unsaddled
and removed the hood from his ill machine. He had not even
begun to inspect the motor before his nose told him the problem;
his nostrils were filled with gasoline fumes. As he poked
around under the tiny engine he found the torn fuel hose,
and soon knew that his night had defiantly taken a turn for
"Oh dammit now what am I going to do?" It didnt
take long before his anger drained out of him and he returned
to his levelheaded self. He stretched his body across the seat
of his sled; he gazed up at the full moon. It was a clear night,
the stars were very bright, and the snow reflected the moonlight
so that even with out the snowmobile's headlamp it was easy
to see the landscape. He soon decided that it was of little
use to sit and enjoy the scenery (although he would have had
things been deferent). John cracked open the trunk of his sled
and pulled out its cargo. The owner of the lodge suggested
that he take a few things with him for the trip, food, flares,
a flashlight, and a gun. This was before John knew about the
dangers of going out alone in the vast wilderness; he only
brought the flashlight and the food. John was on the way back
to the lodge before his engine had called it quits. He had
no idea how far he was from the lodge but he knew (thought)
he was close. He soon had it all laid out in his mind, he would
work his way back toward the lodge. There were almost fifty
snowmobilers stationed there, the came and went as they pleased.
Some preferred to ride during the day, others enjoyed the night.
Sooner or later he would run into one of those snowmobilers
and he could hitch a ride back to the lodge. It was easy going;
John soon found a trail left by another snowmobile. As long
as he stayed in the hard packed snow his feet didnt sink
in as much.
"Shoot at this rate Ill be back in no time at
all" With his spirits raised he began to hum "YMCA" to
himself as he trotted along. Then, without warning a long howl
pierced the peaceful silence. John halted in mid step; his
heart skipped a beat. "Its ok, its ok," John repeated
to himself "Your in Minnesota, they have wolves in Minnesota,
they named their basketball team after them." He continued
on, the howls seemed to grow in frequency. "Its ok a wolf
would not bother a human, if he did hed have been shot
As John continued on he had no idea that he was being watched,
off in the distance two large grey figures lay on a hill looking
down at him.
"Were do you suppose hes
"Beats me, hes most likely lost whoever he is" John
pointed his head toward the hill, he had no idea the creatures
were their. The smaller of the two beasts examined John from
the distance; his nocturnal eyes sliced through the darkness
like a razor. He turned to his companion, "Look at his
eyes ounce, what do you see?" The other beast now focused
in on John, he studied John for a long time before he turned
back to the other beast.
"Nothing, I dont see a bleeding
"Thats exactly what I was thinking." The
cold winter winds began to kick up; they howled and whirled
around the werewolves.
"This is bad news for him."
"Yea, he had better get to were hes going soon." The
smaller wolf got up and began to head down toward John.
"Were are you off to?"
"I wanna see whats going
to happen to him."
"Im sorry was their something else we were going
to do tonight?" The larger wolf opened his mouth, but
closed it in frustration and followed in his companions
Down at the bottom of the hill the
winter winds were even harsher. They blasted Johns
face with the powdery snow that covered the landscape. Soon
the trail John was following had disappeared under a blanket
of white snow. John paused for a moment and scanned the landscape;
it was hard to see through the cloud of snow that wrapped
around him, he could only see a hill through the mess.
"Ok you didnt cross over a hill on the way out
so you should not have to cross over one on the way back." The
trail John was on had ran even to the hill, so he decided to
keep going and use the hill for a reference point. Problem
was the hill was horseshoe shaped and John had crossed it on
the other side on his way out. Soon he was headed away from
the lodge, and out into the wilderness again. The powdery snow
began to pile up as the wind blew stronger and stronger. Soon
John was sloshing through knee-deep snow; each step took more
effort then the last. He was working very hard, even in the
now sub zero weather he began to sweat, rarely did a bead of
sweat get past his chin before the icy winds froze it to his
face. Off on the hill the two figures still watched as John
"Sheesh that poor bastard, he has a strong will Ill
give him that." The smaller werewolf remained silent,
he simply watched as the man pushed on through the deeper and
John meanwhile was now fighting snow that was waste deep
in some areas, a snowmobile could slide across the snow with
ease but a person had a much harder time. John paused for a
moment, panting and gasping.
"This is no time to take five, your almost there." He
tried to take another step, but the snow clung to his leg and
he fell into the soft, snow covered, ground. John dug his hands
into the snow and pulled himself forward, for a short time
crawling actually seemed easier; you didnt sink into
the snow as much when you were spread out. But soon his arms
became tired, his fingers went numb from the cold snow, and
the wind still blew harsh and strong. Closer now then ever,
the werewolves stood and watched.
"This is wrong man."
"Indeed, I thought the fellow was going to make it for
awhile, but what can we do?" The large wolf turned and
began to walk away, but he stopped when the other wolf did
not follow. He turned and walked back to his friend. He took
no notice of him; he simply starred at the man (that was no
longer moving). Finally the wolf turned and glanced at his
pack mate. The large wolf saw something in his eyes, something
he did not want to see. The smaller wolf proceeded toward John.
"NO NO NO youre not thinking what I think youre
"Yes I am, Im going to help
"Dammit have you lost your bleeding
"This man is not like the others,
I saw it so did you."
"Four paws is gonna kill you when
he finds out."
"Four paws is not here watching this guy freeze to death!" They
reached John the smaller wolf began to pull Johns boots
off and then started to fumble with his parka. The larger wolf
simply stood and watched.
"Dammit dont just stand
there, bloody help me, or he will be froze before I can help
"I cant believe Im actually helping you." The
larger wolf began to fumble with the ski-bibs that John wore,
he soon became frustrated with the buckles and simply tore
trough the nylon straps with his teeth. The winds of the harsh
winter were soon filled with howling ounce again, but there
were no human ears to hear it.
Two days later Sam Boyd was back at his lodge he had just
begun to open the door for the small cafe in the main hall
when he noticed a police truck pulling up. The local sheriff
met him at the door. The last time Sam talked to him was to
report one of his tenants John Lock as missing. John had left
one night to snowmobile and never came back; he had left a
nice Truck behind so Sam knew that something had gone very
"Mourning Bruce, whats the
"Remember that snowmobiler you
reported missing a few days ago?"
"Yea, that guy from Wisconsin
his truck is still parked outback."
"Well we found his Skidoo a little ways up the trail
and we found his clothing a few miles west of here.""His
"Yea apparently the local wildlife
had themselves a nice supper."
"Sheeeesh when will those cheese heads ever learn." With
that Sam turned and fired up the griddle, and put the coffee
on. "What will it be Bruce the usual?"
Thanks for reading Hypothermia, a
few years back I was snowmobiling in the UP of Michigan.
The wind chill factor got all the way down to 40 below
zero (I loved it). If you have any rants, raves, requests,
or info Id like to
hear it. You can drop me a line at RacerKey@aol.com.
Have fur, will travel.........