TITLE: Wild Music
GENRE: YA Contemporary
“Want to try a howl?” I ask as Josh Winter and I lean on the railing of the Wolf Center’s viewing platform.
The last rays of the setting sun stretch orange and red fingers across the sky and cast shadows over the ground below. The evening holds its breath as the birds settle into sleep. The perfect time to howl to the Silver Valley Wolf Pack.
“A howl?” Josh coughs and shifts his weight. The warped boards of the viewing deck creak under us. “What for?”
“Sometimes, the wolves answer. Coolest sound ever.” I hold up my cell. “I use it for my ringtone.”
“You just want to see me make a fool of myself.”
“No way.” I put my hand over my heart. “Swear.”
Josh frowns, as if he thinks I’m playing a prank on him. “You first.”
“Deal.” I raise my head and howl for all I’m worth. I imagine the sound flowing out into the valley, imagine the wolves lifting their heads, their ears pricked. Answer me. Join my song.
The echoes fade away. Josh laughs. “I don’t hear anything—”
A howl shoves the silence aside. The sound starts high and keening, gradually drops in pitch. Other wolf voices join in; shrill yips and barks merge to create a virtual symphony. I rub my arms where the hairs stand on end, inhale the sharp aroma of the pine trees. Thanks, guys. I never get tired of that sound.