Where The Wild Things Are
Disclaimer: If you recognise it, it isn't mine.
The effects of the Halloween event were all encompassing, with many unexpected consequences. Some of them were good, a lot of them were bad and a fair few were somewhere in the middle. The monsters and not-quite-natural disasters didn’t just affect the world’s human population, they affected everything. Species that had been thriving before Halloween were driven to the edge of extinction while at the same time new ones were thrust into existence. Some were the products of fiction, folklore and myth, with many of them making up the ranks of the transformed, but others came into being through different, slightly subtler means. Creatures whose existence had long straddled the line between myth and reality, the cryptozoological beasts became undeniable facts of the new reality.
Some species were entirely the creation collective subconscious, creatures whose imagined existence was so pervasive in human minds that they were almost thought of as real and became so on Halloween. In other cases, animals that were long extinct were brought back into a world that was very different from the one they’d departed, the resurrections fuelled by many people’s hope and belief in their continued survival despite all evidence to the contrary, and the sheer imagination of thousands of others.
In Suffolk, a group attempting to take refuge in a church found themselves under attack from a huge black hound with flaming eyes. In Somerset, the sole survivor of a caravan attacked by monsters found that their desperate journey through the haunted countryside became a good deal easier with the arrival of a black dog that kept the horrors at bay and guided them to safety. Elsewhere, convoys travelling between colonies heard the distant cries of British Big Cats.
In Scotland, the existence of the Loch Ness Monster became a fact of life for those that continued to live in the region, with the animal being sighted every few days. Whether or not there was more then one was unknown. In Ireland and other parts of Scotland, there were regular sightings of the shape-shifting but usually horse-like kelpie, while the medics in a colony near the coast of county Mayo found themselves in the unusual position of tending to a badly injured selkie.
In southern France, groups of survivors were terrorized by the large wolf-like animal known as the Beast of Gévaudan. More widespread was the harmless, deer-like Dahu, which was seen throughout France and Switzerland and in northern Italy, and which proved to be relatively easy prey for monsters and hungry humans alike.
In a small village in Mexico, the inhabitants had to contend with their already depleted number of livestock being attacked by a hairless creature which drained them of blood and which was easily identified as the Chupacabra.
In North America, sightings of the Jersey Devil became a common occurrence in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, although there were less then a handful of attacks. Less fortunate were the inhabitants of isolated parts of the northern USA and Canada who seldom dared to travel for fear of the wendingo.
In Australia, years of winding-up gullible tourists came back to bite them in the behind with the forests and woodland acquiring an additional danger in the form of the Drop Bear. On the other hand, there was something of a success story in Tasmania and a few parts of mainland Australia, with captured and tamed specimens of the formerly extinct Thylacine being employed as watchdogs, a role in which they excelled, giving vocal warning of approaching threats long before any of the dogs. The species’ triumphant return provided a rare bright spot in the never ending darkness; it’s usefulness to humans ensuring its continued existence.
As the effects of the Red Sky event continued to be felt around the world, no one knew what the future would be, but one thing was for sure. Everything was going to be very different.