I happen to know Greymane personally. We shared a few rounds of piña coladas at Trader Vic’s, and I managed to record some of our conversation (his hair was perfect, by the way).
So… Greymane. Or should I call you Grey? Or Mane?
Whatever’s clever, mang. Doesn’t matter either way to me.
Tell me about yourself. Have you always been a werewolf?
Where what? I don’t know what you’re talking about, dude. I’m just a guy in a bar.
Oh sorry. Lycanthrope? Shape shifter?
Relax, I’m just kidding. Yeah, I was pretty much born into the life. Some are born, some are bitten. I was born to howl at the moon.
Howling at the moon… do you guys really do that?
Only when we drink too much Jagermeister.
And how much is too much?
No such thing as too much Jager, unless you’re a lightweight.
So you’re not a lightweight…
Let’s just say I’m not exactly on Weight Watchers.
I see. So what does most of your… diet… consist of?
Mostly nosy people who ask a lot of stupid questions.
Hah, just kidding dude. Truth is, we prefer beef, chicken, and pork over human flesh. No offense, but you guys aren’t nearly as tasty as you look like you’d be.
That whole theory about werewolves eating people…
Oh, it’s not completely unfounded. See, vampires almost exclusively feed on humans. They need the blood to keep them going, because they’re basically just walking corpses. More or less self-aware zombies. Us lycans? We don’t really dig on human flesh, unless you guys attack us first. Then all bets are off.
So you would actually eat my heart?
In a heartbeat, pun intended, if you gave me reason to.
And that would also heal you?
Well sure. I mean, it’s the circle of life. No creature can survive if it doesn’t eat. I eat you, my body absorbs the proteins from your body, uses those proteins to regenerate my own body. Et cetera et cetera. I mean, come on, this is basic grade school biology.
I see. So what was it like growing up as a werewolf?
Not much different from any normal kid going through puberty, honestly. One minute you’re sweet and calm, the next minute you’re angry for no reason and growing hair in new places on your body. Pretty typical stuff.
Did you have a childhood sweetheart?
I did, yes.
I ate her.
Oh geez. No. Not seriously. What the hell is wrong with people that nobody understands sarcasm anymore?
I didn’t eat her. Her family moved out of state and I never saw her again.
Oh. That’s sad.
Yeah. It was. But life goes on, you know? And besides. It’s not like we were soul mates or anything. It was probably for the best. If we had mated, she would’ve given birth to a whole litter of pups and then I would’ve been tied down for the rest of my life.
So you’re not a fan of being tied down?
Not with the wrong mate, no. I was young and dumb back then. Reckless. Always looking for a fight. Wasn’t ready to settle down yet.
I’ve heard that about you. Apparently you and Bane had an ongoing rift in high school?
Oh yeah. Bane. Him in his silly letterman jacket, QB of the school’s football team, thought his poop didn’t stink. Pranced around campus like he was freaking Gravemaker. What a joke. He and I got into it a time or two.
And how did that turn out?
Well we’re both still here, right? It’s all old news now, we’ve buried the hatchets. Back then it was all, he’d hit me, I’d bite him, he’d blind me, I’d accidentally bite the lunch lady because I couldn’t see what I was doing, we’d both get sent to the principal’s office, yada yada yada. We’re good now. Even shared a couple of laughs and beers together at our last Season One reunion party.
Was that like a 25th reunion? … or a 50th?
Holy crap, just how old do you think I am???
Oh! Sorry, I didn’t mean anything by it… it’s just so hard to tell with all the fur… and the grey…
Yeah, yeah, yuck it up, whippersnapper. All I can say is that you’ll be lucky to make it to my age. Especially if you keep making wise ■■■ comments to heroes like me who could eat you for breakfast and ■■■■ you out before lunch.
Speaking of heroes like you… what are your thoughts on Fenrir?
Fenrir??? Psh. And you call me old. I told him, “dad, you’re too old for this crap.” He’s supposed to be relaxing comfortably in a retirement home watching Howdy Doody reruns. But no. He wants to come back and relive his glory days. I mean, don’t get me wrong, he’s tough as nails. But at his age, he’s also just as likely to break a hip.
So you think he’s too old to be fighting?
I think we’re both too old to be fighting anymore. Fighting is best left to the young.
So what is best left to the old?
several moments of silence
Um… ahem… I asked, what-
Calm down sonny, I heard you. I ain’t that old. I was just thinking.
Thinking? … about what?
Well for one thing, thinking that you should be buying me a refill on my piña colada. It’s the least you could do for me, considering that I’ve been pleasant enough to answer all of your stupid questions instead of eating your heart out. Literally.
Oh! Of course… sorry.
[I ordered him another drink and told the bartender to put everything on my tab]
Ahem… so anyway… you were saying - erm, I mean, thinking?
Yeah. I was. I was thinking. I’m thinking, those of us at my age. We don’t really have a lot going on for us, surface-wise anyway. I mean, I’m not as fast as I used to be. Not as strong as I used to be. Probably can’t even think as fast as I used to.
Calm down, kiddo, I’m getting there. I guess what I’m getting at is that we can’t always do the stuff we used to be able to do. And that goes for any hero out there. The Banes, the Priscas, the Gormeks. Even the Guineveres. None of us are really as good as we once were. But? We do have one thing going for us.
And that is?
Experience, kid. Wisdom and experience.
Considering all of the wisdom and experience that you have, do you believe that you could take down a team of heavily emblemed legendary heroes?
By myself? Of course not, you fool. Don’t be stupid. With all of my wisdom and experience, I know better than to pick a fight with a team of heavily emblemed legendary heroes in the first place. Because I know that if I do, I’m going to get my ■■■ kicked.
Um… so… if this wisdom and experience doesn’t help you win a fight, how exactly does it help you?
It helps me avoid getting my ■■■ kicked in the first place.
Seriously, kid? I thought they were just exaggerating when they said your generation wasn’t the brightest.
Look. You can’t always win all the fights. Nobody can. You’re fooling yourself if you try to convince yourself otherwise.
You kids these days with your “I’m gonna take on the world!” and “I can do anything!”, “I can be anything!”, “everybody is a winner!” attitude… you guys really gotta cut that ■■■■ out. You’re not doing yourselves any favors by setting the bar so high. Because one of these days, life is gonna come and kick you right square in the nuts and tell you “NO YOU CAN’T!”, and then where will you be?
Um… I don’t… really know…?
I tell you where you’ll be.
You’ll be right here downing piña coladas at Trader Vic’s, or some other hole in the wall, sharing a bunch of pointless stories and useless life lessons with some kid who’s still wet behind the ears.