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Infinite Wilderness

Jeff Casalina

March 2021 978-1-7366617-0-3


Abused at home and bullied at school, Tim runs away from home. He is mysteriously drawn to a remote valley high above the Pacific Coast with other runaway kids. But all is not as it appears. Is this reality or an alternate future?

Join Tim and his newfound friends in this fast paced, action packed adventure!

Suitable for ages 13 and up. Some brief profanity.

Strong messages of kindness, cooperation and sustainability. 


Chapter 11

After my meal, I laid by the fire and went to sleep. I had that same dream. Only this time, it lasted longer with the other wolves and I running, frolicking, playfully nipping at each other and darting about.

I didn’t get much sleep. Voices came from the beach as people showed up. I needed to move on. I studied the map. My best shot was to cut through to the back edge of Seaside then turn south. Once I’d hit the Monterey-Salinas Road, I’d turn left. The map showed a shortcut from that road to Carmel Valley avoiding Monterey and the busy Highway 1 altogether. More peanut butter and orange juice, and I was on my way.

Seaside was a big grid of residential streets. Hopefully, I just looked like another kid on a bike. I found one of the more northerly streets and headed down.

I got most of the way through when I saw some boys sitting on their bikes just hanging out in a driveway. I tried to ignore them. One of them spotted me and nodded in my direction. 

“Hey, man! Where you going?”

I kept my pace. Didn’t turn my head or say anything.

“That’s damn rude of you!” said another boy. “You little shit, you talk, or I’ll kick your ass!” By then, they were riding after me.

An image of Chester Mills flashed in my head. Then it struck me. I was part wolf, descended from wolves or… anyway, I was a wolf!  I spun the bike around. Stopped and faced them. Pulled out my hatchet. “Who wants to try?” I shouted. One older boy with a smirk on his face and his hair slicked back with Brylcreem moved his gold Stingray up close. His front tire almost hit my right leg. 

“Back it up, or I chop it off.”  I raised the hatchet. 

“You can kiss my…”

Before he could finish, I landed the blade on his front tire, slicing it almost clean through and denting the rim down several inches. The boy almost lost his balance as the bike fell out from under him. The others froze.

“Back off, or I plant this in your skull,” I insisted.

“C’mon, Mike. Let’s go,” one of them said. “This fucker’s crazy!”

I let out a blood curdling howl like only a wolf could. Waved my battle-axe high in the air. Slid it back in the bag and left.

My freshly discovered confidence energized my trip down to Monterrey-Salinas Road. There was a fair amount of mid-day traffic. It was time for a rest. I found a section of dry creek bed under a large live oak. The golden wild oats were high around the edges of the tree canopy.  I laid the bike and myself into the creek bed. I could hear the traffic, but it couldn’t see me. I ate a small meal and went to sleep.

I woke up worrying about Annie. It had been three days since I left, and with all the stress of traveling, I hadn’t given her a lot of thought. Did our father come home? Was she alright? What if he did as promised and killed her? I needed to know. I would find a way, some way to call either the house or Deputy Hartman. I patted my shirt pocket, feeling for his card. I needed a payphone—I had change—or perhaps an unlocked house empty of people.


Five Star Amazon Review

A riveting journey

What starts like the ordinary life of an ordinary boy, Tim, quickly turns into an escape for survival and a lifetime adventure. Infused with endurance lessons that apply not just to Tim and his friends, but to humanity as a whole, this young adult story is well suited for grown-ups too and ultimately opens questions about survival both as individuals and as a species. - Elena E.G.