Soft sunlight creeps in through a window, slinking across the floor. Anisa stretches softly, knocking her blanket to the floor. She shivers, scooting closer to a source of heat near the middle of the bed, her body presses up against something wrapped in a blanket. Slowly she wiggles under it, pressing even closer to the source of heat, a body, a gorgeously sculpted muscular hot body. Laying her head on his chest she sighs softly, sleep still trying to claim her for its own.
“Morning.” A voice rolls from above her head, an arm slowly finding its way along her waist to pull her a little deeper into the warmth of the bed “Sleep well Anisa?”
She nods, softly kissing the skin beneath her lips, her head still fuzzy from sleep “What about you Shan?”
“I slept very well, but yet another dreamless sleep.” His sigh ruffles her hair slightly, the intake of it rippling through his chest.
She nods softly, stretching against his body as her hands wander down his chest. Suddenly she freezes, remembering the events of the last two days. Quickly she scoots away from him, meeting resistance from the arm he wrapped around her “Umm… I’m sorry… I invaded your side of the bed… I-I didn’t mean to… It’s just I...” she stammers on for another minute before Shan plants a kiss on her lips, ending her train of thought.
“Shhh... Anisa… Don’t worry about it… If you’re cold you can always snuggle with me,” his tone tantalizingly playful “I’ll try to control myself” he winks softly, leaning down to kiss her again.
She puts her hand in front of her mouth, blocking his advances, her breath coming in shallow pants as she says “Shan please stop… We’ve only known each other for a day… and I’m engaged to be married when I get home…” a small voice in the back of her head reminds her that she’s known her fiancée as long as she’s known Shan, and Shan was far superior to her fiancée, in every aspect.
“I wonder what that wolf boy will think once he finds that crown of yours.” Shan relaxes, and moves his arm form around her waist “If you want to stay in bed a while longer you may, but I have to contact my Advisor and let him know what’s going on.”
Anisa turns away from him, tightly pulling the blanket around herself, she mumbles into the pillow, her words distorted by the cotton “wiff stahy ear…” is what Shan heard.
“Ok.” He smiles softly “I’ll return shortly” he leaves the room and goes outside for a moment Shan returns to find Anisa standing in the doorway of the closet, gawking at something that looks oddly like a hide tanning device. Shan clears his throat “Umm…I don’t know what you’re thinking I do with that, but it’s not used for getting my way with gorgeous young women like yourself; It’s a hide tanner… Ya know, for my leather…I can use this to stretch the hide with…”
She looks over her shoulder at him “Do I detect the hint of a guilty conscience?”
“Me, guilty, never.” He chuckles, coming over to stand behind her.
She smiles softly “Guess you caught me… I got a little curious of my surroundings, figured I’d get up and look around instead of sulking in bed all day…”
His face lights up as the tone in his voice turns to one of a dark temptational flirt “Well you could have stayed there… But then I’d have had to join you and explored something myself.” he moves closer to her, his arms snaking around her waist, his breath falling on her neck as he starts to whisper “After all, it’s been so very long since I’ve had a woman here… in my house… my bed… my arms…”
She blushes softly, moving away “Now Shan… I told you earlier to quit that…”
“Yes Ma’am.” He chuckles, stepping back to sit on the bed “All in all you liking what ya find?” He smiles at her.
She clears her throat, blinking several times, trying and failing not to follow him with her eyes, not to travel the length of his body, all the way down to his- she shook her head “Umm… Yea, you’ve a great place here… I especially love the lone tree in the backyard…”
He chuckles and stands “Yea, Phoenix Root, ‘round about the solstice it’ll catch flame and start all over again.”
She runs her hand through her hair, turning to the window so as not to be caught staring at his reflections gorgeously sculpted abs, following the hair that leads past the waistband of his shorts. She closes her eyes, trying desperately to clear her head “Phoenix Root, huh? I’ve heard of it back at home, never actually seen one though…”
“Yea, and I’ve a willow up front that grew into the porch itself.” He smiles.
She looks around the landscape, watching the way the leaves flutter across the ground “Your trees are beautiful…. Willows are my favorite…”
He smiles, walking over to the window. Anisa moves away slightly, avoiding him.
He chuckles and looks at her “What?”
“Call me superstitious but I don’t feel like hitting my head and passing out again…”
“I’d say, you doing alright?” He gently reaches his hand up and touches the bandages
She winces softly “Yeah… I guess, it still hurts though… and my head is spinning a little…”
“You should lay down.” He sets his hand on her shoulder.
She sways softly “Yeah… Guess I should… I’d rather get a tour of my new home, but maybe I should lay back down…”
“Lay down, and we’ll do it tomorrow, ok?” He slowly guides her to the bed.
“Okay…” she lays down, curling up on her side, her world goes dark as her head hits the pillow.
Shan goes out to the porch and waits for a big black raven, it comes and lands on the banister “Hello, any reply?”
It caws, the sound of it mimicking the clearing of ones throat “Yes, and he agrees that the idea sounds valid.”
Caroline walks to the tent that Kail and her husband are conversing in, tears flowing down her face, a broken bloodied crown in her hands, she walks in and sets the crown down on the makeshift table “I found this on my way home…”
“Holy….!” John jumps up, the papers on the desk flying everywhere.
“Where did you find that?!?” Kail grabs her shoulders shaking her slightly.
John grabs Kail, holding him back “Calm down Kail, scaring her like that won’t help. Caroline? Where did you find that?”
Caroline sniffles, still crying “On a planet not far from here… Under a pile of rocks… The locals claim some men came through the area, dragging a woman who wore this crown… They said there was a landslide… The men all got away, but the woman was tied up and didn’t get out of the way in time…” she breaks down, sobbing.
“Oh love…” John holds her to him, kissing her forehead.
Caroline continues sobbing, stuttering she says "Th-they t-told me tha-that sh-she tr-tri-tried to g-get f-free... sh-she str-strug-struggled f-for a wh-whole d-day be-before gi-givi-giving up..."
Kail runs off, following the vague smell of Anne's blood, hoping to at least find her body "She's fine isn't she? She met your gaming friend?" John returns to his chair, looking several years older from worry.
Caroline smiles softly, wiping the expertly placed "tears" from her face "You always did see right through me... yes... she's safe... I won't say she's not hurt, but she's still alive and safe..."
"Good..... When will she come home?"
"I'm not sure... It depends on how long this takes... she may be gone some several years..."
"At least she'll be safe for that time, correct? We can trust this man?"
Caroline thinks for a minute, choosing her words carefully she says "She'll.... Be safe enough... He won't let her be killed... But I wouldn't trust him to protect her virtue..."
"What do you mean by that? Are you saying that she might choose this wild man over the cultured man which we've picked for her? She does know that marrying Kail will do our clan well doesn't she????
"I'm sure she does darling..." standing behind him she gently massages his shoulders "It's just... he has certain... charms... charms that Kail would never acquire.... And if she does choose him, well... Then at least she’ll be happy... And isn't her happiness more important??"
John sighs and relaxes into the massage "Of course it is dear, I just hope we can continue happily as well."
She smiles softly “Trust me darling… When she comes back everything will be fine.”
"Hope so, they plan to kick us out... The council believes that this is a sign of my weakening power and no long thinks I am fit to lead..." He points to the letter on top which bears the seal of the Skyknight council.
“Darling… You mustn’t worry… I promise you everything will be fine…” smiling softly she moves to the edge of the tent “I’m going to find Spook and send them a message alright?”
"Ok...” he relaxes and shuffles some papers about.
Ducking out of the tent Caroline makes her way to the lake, she clucks her tongue softly three times and a black cat the size of a panther slinks over to her “Spook… You’re such a good kitty…” softly she scratches him on the head, just behind the ear, as she ties a letter to his collar “Find her. Give this to her. Come back.”
He licks her hand softly so as to get his mistress’ scent, Spook coughs softly clearing his throat, in a deep silky voice he says “Yes Mistress Caroline…” then he slinks into the shadows.
Shan softly nudges Anne's side and whispers "Wake up Anisa, it's time for your training to start."
She grunts softly, pulling the blanket over her head “Five more minutes, dad…. Just five more minutes….”
He chuckles and sits in the chair beside the bed "If you say so." The room slowly starts to heat up.
She stretches softly, sitting up she rubs her eyes and looks around the room, a tear slides down her face as she remembers where she is “Sorry about that… forgot you’re not my dad…”
"It's ok, you’ll take time to adjust, but you'll get it eventually." He smiles an understanding smile.
“I just… I keep hoping that when I open my eyes… I’m going to be in my room… a cold rag on my forehead… my worried parents by my bedside holding my hand…. And this… this will all have been a feverish dream…” she sighs softly
He responding laugh sounds mildly mirthless and cold. "That would have to be one strong fever to create me." He smiles a slightly cold smile that sends a shiver down her spine despite the heat of the room.
“Maybe your right… You’re too cold hearted for my taste.” she storms into the bathroom, slamming the door shut behind her, crying softly she leans against it.
"Maybe I am, but honestly, insulting my like that is never a good idea." He appears before her in a haze like form, similar to a mirage.
“Who said anything about insult? I just told you the truth!” tears still flowing down her face she turns and struggles to open the door. Softly she mutters several curses under her breath.
He opens the door for her, and helping her into the room, he presses her to the wall beside the bed "Sometimes the truth is the gravest insult." He looks her in the eyes, his turning a dark red color from the outside in.
“Get away from me…” weakly she tries to shove him back
"Not today." He pulls her onto the bed and pins her with his body "We aren't leaving 'til we can understand each other." He smiles a slightly wicked grin.
“Understand this…” as she talks her eyes turn a dark blue and her incisors lengthen “I want to go home, to be with my own kind. To be in the arms of my loving mother! Now Get Off!!”
He chuckles wickedly at her display "I told you we aren't leaving 'til we understand each other." His eyes turn almost completely red except for a slit of the original blue, the room vibrating from the intensity of the Magyks that roll off his body, causing both his and her clothes to rip.
She struggles more to get away “Please…. Please get off… If you want an understanding then we should talk like civil people… this is… Barbaric… Neandertholic… please don’t do this…”
He growls a deep, resounding growl, his eyes glazing over with a far off look, his head snaps up and he rushes outside, a tail appearing after he leaves the room, a wild roar sounding from outside, howls calling back. She relaxes a little, quickly she goes into the closet, cutting a pair of his pants so that they’ll fit her, doing the same with a shirt.
A large black wolf flies thru the wall, landing on its side not far from her, a dragon of similar size jumps thru the hole the wolf left. Acting on instinct she rushes to the wolfs side, searching thru the fur at the base of its neck for a pulse, finding it she pulls the wolfs head into her lap and looks into its eyes, searching for signs of rabies or a concussion.
The wolf suddenly turns into Kail, his clothes either missing or in tatters, the dragon turns into Shan, his clothing in similar condition "Someone else knows about this planet, it's no longer safe here, you going to come with me and stay safe or take your chances with wolf boy and the people who sent him here?"
Kail groans, he opens his eyes slightly "Anne???"
“Kail?” she shakes her head softly, looking up at Shan “No… If we leave here we take him with us… We… We can tie him up and blindfold him… I-I have to know why he’s here, why he came looking…. He… He shouldn’t have made it here… Mom said she’d fabricate my death… Kail how did you find me????”
"I can't take two, it's either you or him, make your choice and hurry! I think more or coming..." Shan looks south.
"You're alive? Or is this heaven? Anne, I'm so confused, what's going on? Why're you with the Demon Drake of the Reapers???" Kail looks up at you with confusion she shakes her head softly “Shan…. I… My mother entrusted my safekeeping to you… so I’ll stay with you. But I need one minute with him to make him forget seeing me… Just one minute.”
"Be quick about it, they're here." Shan gets some things and comes over to her side.
"Anne, please tell me, what's going on?"
“Darling this will only hurt a moment. You will remember nothing but a storm, a landslide, you tripped and hit your head on a rock. The others will be with you when you awake. And that is all.” bending over him she kisses her neck softly “Kail… Be safe…” quickly she bites into his neck, injecting him with a memory blocker, willing it to replace her with the memory she just described. She pulls away from him, the bite healing instantly, and stands up “Shan what about the house…? My scent will be all over it… especially this room… That’s sure to raise suspicion…”
"Nature will claim the house the moment we leave, and will spit him out. Don't worry it'll all be ok." He opens a portal "Ladies first."
“Alright… see you on the other side….” quickly she walks through it, ignoring the fac that she probably just lost the one chance to be with her family again.