Bad Manners

They approached the thrashing, snarling creature hanging from the snare, calmly dodging claws as long as their fingers and snapping teeth with cruel points.

They spun the creature around and it howled and struggled, but couldn’t reach them. They got to work on the snare, glad of the thick gloves that let them touch the sharp wire.

When the wire was at last worked loose, the thrashing creature hit the ground, then rose to its feet. It was easily twice their size.

It was a hulking, hairy thing of long snout and muscled limbs. It launched itself at them, claws outstretched.

They raised a hand. The beast shot back with a sound like gunfire. It hit the ground a man, hair scattered around him as if he had shed a fur coat.

He blinked up at his saviour, stunned.

‘A curse is no reason for bad manners,’ they said, lowering their hand. ‘Do be more careful where you put your feet in future.’

They swept away without another word.

Image by Виктория Бородинова from Pixabay

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