Game Of Hearts
Author's note: i was bored and this is what helped me understand that i love to write.
ChangingI woke up to Faelyn’s voice outside the tent. He sounded angry. I got to my feet and went to the tent flap. As I was about to open it I heard Faelyn say
“Well to bad, she’s not going anywhere.” I heard someone mumble a reply.
“Yes, tell him that in those exact words!” I heard a faint voice then Faelyn said,
“I don’t care, now leave me alone, I need to go see to Anna. Goodbye.” I rushed back to the bed and had just gotten settled when he walked back in. I looked up and saw him starting at me with an unreadable face. I looked back at him with fake-sleepy eyes. He looked back at me with love. He smiled and I waved him over. He walked over and sat down on the bed. “So, how much of that did you hear out there?” he said in a voice that I knew well.
I smiled sheepishly, “Something about someone not leaving and ‘to bad’ and ‘yes tell him that in those exact words’ or something like that.” I admitted. He smiled and I sat up and before he could say anything I leaned forwards and gave him a long, slow , drugging kiss. As I sat back he smiled even wider.
“What was that for?” he asked me, I could hear the longing in his voice, being a boy and wanting more. I grinned and said, “Because I hate it when you are in a bad mood, and because I love you.” I said. He looked at me and a weird look crossed his face. I felt the smile fade away as he looked at me more intensely. “What are you looking at? Is it my hair? You know I didn’t have time to grab a brush.” he shook his head and grinned, but I could tell that it wasn’t the same.
“I know I just kind of zoned-out.” I nodded even though I didn’t believe him. He stood and picked up a pile of clothes and threw them at my head. I narrowed my eyes at him, and he laughed and said
“Don’t worry; I picked something more you this time.” I nodded at the bed and he said “Still don’t trust me huh?”
and sighed. I shook my head and he laughed again. He came and sat down in the bed so close that our hips were touching. I picked up the shirt and it was ok. It had a vest but I decided I wouldn’t wear that so I set it aside. The shirt itself was long-sleeved and a light forest green. The jeans were knee-short and blue. I noticed there was underwear. Thank god I didn’t have to embarrass myself asking for a pair. I didn’t look at them much; just long enough that I knew that it was safe to wear them. I looked at Faelyn and said,
“You’re really getting to know what I will say Yes and No to aren’t you?” he shrugged
“I guess.” I laughed and swatted at his butt as he walked away.
“Behave yourself.” He said in a mocking one.
“Hmm? I don’t think I’ve heard of that saying before.” I said sarcastically. He raised his eyebrows
“Hmm. I think that you may be right.” I laughed and shooed him out of the tent. I picked up the shirt and all of a sudden I had this back-wrenching pain start in my neck. I gasped and then it hit again. I screamed so hard that a vessel in my eye popped and dropped like a rock. Faelyn came running in with a stick thing in his hand. He dropped it and ran to my side and dropped onto his knees beside me. I looked at him with terrified eyes.
“Help me!” I croaked before another spasm hit me. I screamed again. He held my head in his hands trying to pick me up but my body was a slippery noodle, he was looking at me with a panicked look, his usual calm gone like it never existed. I couldn’t move. It hurt just thinking about it. He yelled something but I couldn’t hear him, all I could do was try and read his lips. It looked like he was shouting a name. He was shouting Aptura’s name! I tried to tell him no but he kept yelling. Aptura’s massive frame filled the tent all of a sudden and I felt myself being lifted up and carried. I squinted as the bright sun pierced my un-adjusted eyes. I tried to fight against his arms but then I felt myself being switched to someone else. It was Faelyn. I recognized the feel of his arms on me, holding me tight. I stopped trying to struggle. I felt his warm breath on my ears and heard a faint
“Its ok, you’re going to be just fine, the first time always hurts.” He explained. But what did he mean first time? First time for what? I felt the wind whip past me as he started to run. Where was he going? Why was he going into the forest? Then another spasm hit and I screamed again, turning stiff as a board. He finally set me down after what seemed like forever, in a clearing somewhere in the forest. I heard Aptura shout over my screaming
“She started the Change to early, all we can do now is wait!” I felt Faelyn shaking with sobs as he listened to my screaming, knowing he couldn’t do anything to stop it. I somehow managed to shift my hand over to his, through my pain. He felt my hand and looked down and held it. He looked into my eyes and I looked into his golden ones. I knew that it would be alright, even though I had no idea what was happening, he did. We sat like that, me screaming, him crying for my pain like it was his own. Then my hand went limp, I sat there just staring into open space, I could hear him talking to me, shaking me but as much as I wanted to I couldn’t move, talk or anything. All of a sudden felt my bones grinding together, moving shifting, changing.
It hurt like nothing I had ever experienced before.
I couldn’t even scream so I just lay there. He tried to shift me but every time he touched me I stiffened in pain. He finally gave up and then I didn’t feel anything. I opened my eyes and the world looked different, somehow clearer, like I was seeing it through new eyes. I looked over at Faelyn and he looked down at me. He smiled grimly and I stood up. But as I tried to stand on two legs I fell back down with a wince. I tried to speak to Faelyn, ask him why I can’t stand but all that came out was a choked snarl. I looked down at my body and all I saw was white-ish blonde, fur. I started to try and scramble up and he reached out to me saying, “It’s ok, just take it slowly.” And amazingly, I understood him. I tried to nod but it was just a bob of my head. He nodded like he understood then he started to spasm. I stood up as he fell to the ground writhing like he was in pain, I heard a soft moan escape his lips and could tell he was trying to hold it in for my sake, again. I blinked and before me stood a giant leopard. He was as big as I was, bigger even. He looked at me and I stepped back a step. He gave off a familiar smell. I took a hesitant step forward and he stood as still as he could. I took another and then we were nose-to-nose. He blinked at my daringness. I rubbed my head against his with a purr. All of a sudden he lunged at me with a playful growl. I leaped aside and he rolled past me. I tried to stifle a purr of amusement but it came out anyways. He looked at me while getting up with the look of someone who didn’t want to look embarrassed even though they knew they were beat. He shook himself off and padded up to me. I leaned down on my front paws and left my back end up in the air, saying I wanted to play. He shook his head slightly and took off. I sat down and waited there. He walked back into the clearing and sat next to me. He nudged my shoulder and I stood up. We walked into the forest instead of running, I had to get used to my new four-foot thing. Finally it felt ok so I started to go faster and he trotted alongside me. I glanced at him from the corner of my eye. He was so graceful and here I was tripping over every stick and leaf there was in the forest. He ran ahead of me and stopped, facing me. I tried to go around him but he stepped in my way. I growled a warning, and he snarled back, much fiercer. I took a step back in surprise. All of a sudden he lunged for me and I felt his teeth sink into my flank. I howled out in pain and surprise. I growled and spun on him. He was standing there waiting for my attack. I lunged at him and he side-stepped me easily. I spun before he had time to collect himself and sank my teeth into his shoulder. He cried out and I took a step back. I felt this tingly-feeling starting in the back of my head. Then I heard Faelyn’s voice as if he was in my head. “Did you really have to bite me so hard?” I growled and thought
“If you hadn’t bit me I never would have bit back!” then felt like an idiot; of course he can’t hear me. He can’t read minds. But apparently I was wrong
“Hey, I only did that so we could communicate! You bit me back for no reason!” I stared at I’m and he looked like he would have a grin on his face if he was a human.
“How is that even possible? We are just cats, we can’t read minds!” I thought back slowly.
“Do you feel like just a cat?”
I thought about that for a second “No not really, I feel like a giant cat but I thought that it would be… different somehow.”
“Humph!” he grunted and started to walk off. I caught up to him and he looked over at me and so I though at him, “Why do you have to bite me to talk like this?”
“I don’t know you just do, I’m still new at this too so you’d have to ask someone else all your questions, I can only answer a few.”
“Ok then what do I look like then?” He looked over at me and thought finally “Beautiful as usual.”
I looked down“That’s not an answer, what do I look like? Like what color, height, you know that kind of stuff.”
“Hmm. You are a little shorter than me which is about 5’ 6” so you’re about five foot tall. You have fur the same color as your hair; you have a very long fluffy tail. Is there anything else you want to know?”
I thought for a second “I don’t think so. So how come my fur is the same color as my hair when you look like a leopard?”
He didn’t answer for a second, thinking, “We have tried to figure that out but we never could, maybe I was meant for this? Who knows, it’s just the way mother-nature made me.”
I walked silently for a little while.
“Well I think I like you better like this. You would probably not look too good dark brown.” He rolled his eyes. I purred and started to run. He growled and ran after me. As he caught up to me I nipped at his ear, careful not to break skin or hurt him, too much anyways. He yelped in a playful manner and I hissed at him playfully. He pretended to be afraid and let me stand over him for a second before lunging at me, keeping his claws sheathed. He knocked me over and we wrestled for a while, him finally pinning me down. I waited for him to let go of the scruff of my neck but he didn’t until I shook my head slightly, reminding him. He purred and let go and I thought to him “So how do I change back into a human? Or is this an all-my-life kind of thing?”
“Well no its not and you can change back and forth whenever you want to. Like I did before.” He replied. I kept on walking and thinking at the same time. Big mistake. I felt something snag my forepaw and I went down with a screech. I rolled down the hill and bumped into a tree and lay there, dazed. I heard Faelyn running to me and he started to yell to me in my mind.
“Anna! Are you ok? Anna! Oh please be ok!” he reached me and I felt something brush my face. “Anna!” He said and I realized it wasn’t in my head, he had changed back. I looked up at him and something blurred my vision. I reached up with a forepaw and wiped it away then looked at my paw. It was blood. My eyes rolled and then blackness.
I woke up in our bed. Faelyn was sitting at the end of the bed watching me. I opened my eyes and his eyes lit up.
“Oh my god! Are you ok? I’m so sorry!” as he crawled over to me and sat next to me, sitting as close as he could to me. I blinked
“For what?” I asked, confused. He frowned,
“Don’t you remember anything from yesterday?” I blinked as everything came back to me. I tried to sit up but I couldn’t, something was holding me down. I looked down to see Faelyn’s hand on my chest, keeping me there. I looked up at him and said,
“Your hands a little too close for comfort there bud.” He looked at his hand as if he hadn’t realized it was there. He slowly pulled his hand away and said softly
“Sorry, I wasn’t thinking.” I sat up a little slower and he moved away from me, like he didn’t want to touch me. I grabbed his hand before he could pull it away.
“What’s wrong Faelyn? Did I do something wrong?” he looked down at our twined fingers and said slowly,
“No, nothing’s wrong, I’m still wondering how you can touch me, most normal people would probably be afraid of me, that’s all.” He said still slowly moving away from me. I grabbed his arm and pulled him to me,
“Well I would have thought that you would have known by now that I’m not really normal am I?” We laughed. “Why do you think I would be afraid of you? We are the same, not different, remember?” He looked at me sheepishly and shrugged. I leaned over to him and gave him a quick peck. He smiled and started to lean in for more but I pulled away, and then pushed him off the bed again, but this time he was prepared for it. He dodged out of the way and I yelped, fighting to keep my balance. He smiled and leaned over me. I glared at him and then that little movement of my head sent me crashing over the edge of the bed. I pulled myself up.
“Injured lady here remember? You should treat me with more respect. You know, respect your elders kind of thing?” I laughed as I crawled back onto the bed, careful to move as far from the edge as I could.
“Elders? Your only 18 though, I’m 19 so I’m your elder.” I glanced at him out of the corner of my eye. “You don’t look 19 you look 17 or 18.” I said.
He laughed and said “Thanks” I tried to hide my smile but he saw it anyway. He grabbed me around the waist and swung me around the tent. When he stopped spinning I was dizzy. I looked up at him and he caught me off guard. As his lips met mine I felt like this should never end even though he would end it if I didn’t. We sat there, entwined for a while, him shifting me every once in a while until I was straddling his lap. He pulled me as close as he was able to and laid me down on the bed, our lips still together. His shirt was already unbuttoned and as I wrapped my arms around his waist and pulled him closer. We heard a knock on the tent side. We both groaned and pulled reluctantly apart. He stood up and I sat up on the bed. When he got to the door I heard Aptura’s voice saying
“We need you to come help us with the hunt, will you come?” Faelyn looked back towards me and Aptura said “Oh you probably are too busy, you can come on morning patrol instead.”
Faelyn sighed and looked back at me for permission; I laughed “Go, we can talk later.” With a wink. He turned back to Aptura and said “I will come but just wait for five minutes I need to get ready.” Aptura nodded and walked away towards the stables. Faelyn sighed and turned to me with an apologetic expression. I laughed and picked a pile of his clothes up and threw them at his head. He caught them and laughed and I got up to go outside so he could change. As I waited outside I saw the stick thing he was holding when he came in to find me changing, or whatever I was doing. I picked it up and it was a walking stick with a beautiful design carved into it. In the middle my name was carved in to it. I stood there studying the work of art, and hadn’t even realized it when Faelyn walked up behind me. I jumped as he wrapped his arms around my waist and rested his head on my shoulder.
“Do you like it?” he asked in a soft voice. I shook my head and replied “No, I love it.” And turned to face him. He looked down at me and I smiled
“So, who made this?” He smiled and said with a proud voice
“I did.” I laughed again, “It will be treasured forever” and stretched up on my tiptoes and kissed his cheek. He smiled “Thank you.”
“You know if I keep you here any longer then you will miss the hunt.” He leaned closer to me,
“I wouldn’t mind.” He said in just slightly persuasive voice. I groaned and pushed him away. “Get going” I said. He smiled, leaned down and kissed me good-bye and started to walk towards the stables to get his Stage. I walked back into the tent and looked around at my new home. I sat down on the bed and put my head in my hands. I don’t know why but I had the urge to cry. I held my breath until it passed. When I looked up again I saw someone at the door. I stood up quickly. I couldn’t see who it was all I could see was a shadow. I took a cautious step forward.
“Who’s there?” I called. The figure moved and took off. I ran out the door and looked around. There was no one there. I shook my head, I must be imagining things. I walked back into the tent. I lay down on the bed, tired again. I closed my eyes and fell into a dreamless sleep. When I woke up Faelyn was home and was just sitting down next to me. I sat up and looked over at him as I wrinkled my nose. “You stink”
He smiled and said, “Well I missed you too.” He leaned in for a kiss but I leaned away,
“Like I said before, you stink.” I said to his pouting face. He rolled his eyes and said,
“Fine I’ll wash up and I’ll be back in a few minutes.” He leaned in and gave me a quick peck before I could pull away and jumped off the bed. I rolled my eyes and threw a pillow at him. He laughed and threw it back as he pushed out of the tent. I rolled my eyes again and lay back down. I closed my eyes and laid there thinking, where were my parents? Did I have any here? Maybe I could meet them! I shook my head and thought; maybe they put me up for adoption because they didn’t want me. If they didn’t want me then, why would they want me now? I laid there and thought until Faelyn came back. His hair was slicked to his head and his eyes shone. I smiled and he walked over to the bed and sat down. I sat up and laid my head on his shoulder with a sigh. He picked my head up and cupped it in his hands, and searched my eyes then said, “What’s wrong?”
I looked at him, surprised. “Nothing, why?” he looked more deeply into my eyes, “I can tell something is wrong, I can see it in your eyes.”
I sighed, “Sorry, I was thinking that’s all.” He raised an eyebrow. I looked back at him, “I don’t want to talk about it right now.” He nodded and laid me back down on the bed and laid next to me. I snuggled into him. I breathed in the scent of him, soap, dirt, and sunshine. He chuckled, “Did you just sniff me?”
I flushed, “Sorry I just love the way you smell.” He shook his head, “Sometimes I don’t understand you women.” But I could hear the smile in his voice.
I rolled over and looked up at him
“And you think that we women understand you men? Because you are sadly mistaken my friend.” He smiled and shrugged. I rolled my eyes and thought “Why not lighten the mood?” and went to push him over the edge again but he looked at me and said
“Don’t you dare.” I looked up at him with an innocent expression, “Who me? I wasn’t going to do anything.”
He rolled his eyes and started to say “Uh-huh, sure yo-” then gasped as I pushed my cold feet against his warm legs. He glared down at me as I smiled up at him,
“Something wrong?” I asked him as sweetly as I could. He narrowed his eyes at me again. I laughed and said “Well, it’s not my fault you’re so warm and I’m so cold.”
That did it and he started to laugh and I smiled even wider. “So how did you wash anyway, in the stream?” I asked him, for future reference of course. He rolled his eyes, “Duh.”
I shook my head; he didn’t understand what I meant. “Ok. How do you get there, you’re not the only one who needs to wash you know.” I looked at him knowingly. He stood up and pulled me to my feet. “Let’s go there then”
I grinned as we walked out of the tent and started running. He took a well-used path and before I knew it we were coming into a huge clearing and I saw waterfalls and a giant pool. It looked like something you would find in a fairy-tale, or a cartoon. I looked around in amazement, and not even turning to look at him I ask, “Am I dreaming? Because this can’t be real, it’s to…to… amazing.” He chuckled and I shivered as his warm breath blew onto my ear.
“No you’re not dreaming, yet.”
I raised my eyebrows, “Yet? That sounds…interesting, I guess.”
He threw his head back and laughed, and I grinned. He turned to the pool as I looked away, to keep looking around.
“SPLASH!” I turned around in time to see a shirtless Faelyn jump into the pool and splash me with enough water to soak anyone down to the bone. I squealed and ducked, but sadly, not in time. As Faelyn’s head popped up above the water he grinned. “The waters fine, come on in!” he called out to me, hands cupped around his mouth as a microphone. I rolled my eyes and sat on a sun warmed rock about ten feet away from the water’s edge and propped my hand on my knee and rested my chin in my palm. He sighed and disappeared under water again. I looked around for him, expecting him to come back up right in front on me but he didn’t. After about two minutes I got worried so I walked down to the water’s edge and peered in.
Faelyn jumped up and pulled me into the water. I screamed and he pulled me farther from the edge until we were in the middle of the pool. He didn’t let me go and I clung to his arm. He pulled me close and I glared up at him, it was quite hard, trying to glare and blink away the water spiked to my lashes. He looked down at me and laughed,
“What?” I shook my head and said,
“I didn’t want to go swimming you know. I just wanted to see where this place was, I didn’t have a bathing suit either.” He shook his head to,
“You don’t need one.” His warm breath on my ear made me shiver. He chuckled in my ear and clutched me tighter. I rolled my eyes as he pulled me closer to the waterfalls. He stopped “What now?”
I smiled. “Do you know how many times I have had people go to the waterfall, and drag me along with them? Too many times to count thank you.”
His brow furrowed but he kept on heading towards the waterfalls. I laughed and tried to pull myself out of his grasp. He squeezed me tighter and swam faster. We passed around the waterfall and came out into a humungous cave, bigger than any I had ever seen. I gazed around in amazement until Faelyn said,
“Do you like it? I thought you would.” I didn’t answer for a second and he must’ve thought I didn’t like it because he said in a worried tone,
“If you don’t like it we can always go to a different one.”
I turned around to see his worried face; I looked him in the eyes and said, “No, I love it.”
Before he could reply I leaned forwards and he grinned thinking he knows what I am doing. I grinned again and darted out of his loosened grip. I darted behind him, but the water made me slow and he grabbed for me, but the water also made him slow (and not to mention clumsy) too. He tripped and fell face first into the water. I laughed and looked around, I felt something brush my leg and I squealed and danced out of the way. But something grabbed my ankle and I tripped. He popped up from the water. I stared up at him until he smiled. “What was that about?”
“A joke. Perhaps you’ve heard of them.” He teased.
I smiled and splashed him with water.
“Hey! What was that for?” he said after wiping water out of his eyes. I shrugged, “I think you referred to it as a ‘joke’? Yes that’s it.”
I said tapping my chin in mock thought. He chuckled and swam away. I shook my head and started to head towards the front of the cave, planning on going back outside but he heard me splashing around and snaked a hand around my waist and started to pull me farther into the cave. I struggled against his arm and he shook his head and pulled me closer. All of a sudden I couldn’t keep the question back. “Where are my real parents? I know that they must be from here.”
He looked at me startled, but still swimming, but slowing. “Why would you think that? Your parents are in the human’s world, remember?”
I shook my head in denial, “No, when I was crying the day we met,” he stopped swimming. “I had found out that I was adopted to replace a dead baby.”
“Oh, that must have…. well I don’t know how to tell you this but, your parents were killed because they committed treason, they-”
I shook my head and whispered “No, no, no, that can’t be true. They have to be alive, who killed them?!”
He looked away; I shook my head again and pushed away from Faelyn, backing away, staring at him wide-eyed. I felt the hot tears running down my face. He reached out to me but I cringed away from him, I couldn’t help it. I turned away from him to pull myself up onto the ledge and ran away. I heard Faelyn shout my name behind me, calling me back.
“Anna! Stop, I’m sorry, please come back!” I shook my head and felt the tears fling off my face. I didn’t care where I was going, didn’t care that I didn’t know an inch of these woods. My brain just shut down and told me to keep running, to never stop, that I never could stop. I ran and ran and ran. Life had no more meaning.
It was over.