Bitten

His side is burning and he’s running up the street, burning in his side.

Pause.

On the corner,

Some other’s scent but not recent. Not the one who bit him in his side, which burns as he runs through the sudden, open space.

He doesn’t venture this far by habit. But with the biter on his patch he won’t take risks.

He thought he smelt food.

Pause again.

A breeze against his side, his tale and he flicks his ears.

He smells his own blood on the cold, smooth, stone ground. Flecks, strong-smelling, spattered from his side.

He moves off, but not quickly. He moves his legs and his side burns, wider now.

The urge to feed is strong, but something else is stronger now.

He needs to find a space, a space anywhere.

He must curl up.

Not to sleep.

Somehow he must find a quiet space to be still for a while.

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