The Inner Fox
I slept out in the middle of nowhere, only to wake to the sunrise peaking over the hills. Groaning I got to my feet, I felt my wounds starting to fester as well as my back aching due to how I slept.
Slowly morphing to a wolf I trudged slowly on home, dazed at what had gone on last night.
Damn it! I could have taken them on alone! I didn’t need a stupid stuck up she wolf to come to my… I paused for a moment my train of thought as I came to Wolf Rock. The first place I’d ever taken Luna…
Nothing much had changed, dark yellow, green moss had bloomed on some of the boulders, and the leaves on the trees indicated that it was coming close to the end of summer.
I thought of Luna. For the first time in a while I was able to stretch my mouth out into a small smile. I remembered how I’d taken her here; she’s been such a klutz! Nearly fell off a tree and I broke her fall. I also remembered the bruise she’d given me! Before that she’d tripped and I’d suspended her in the air, very awkward.
I suppose that was how it began, I thought, stepping around a boulder that resembled a small boar. It was then I realised I was going in the wrong direction.
“CRAP!” I yelled at the top of my lungs, startling the birds causing them to fly out in clouded masses, squawking as well as a few bears which growled bitterly.
I sighed, clenching my fist and using it to support me as I leant against a tree. The bark rough and segmented pricked my fingers. I leaned in more and heard a low bark. I leaned the other way and nearly lost my balance. Quickly gaining my footing I stood normally, turning my focus to the foot of the tree. A fox was curled up by the base, its bushy chalk white tail end covering its paws. I could tell it was a female for that’s how Luna was when it was that time of month (the worst time to be with her). Her fern coloured eyes seemed to pierce my soul with bitterness for nearly stepping on her.
I backed away, my top lip twitching slightly as it normally did when I felt threatened. She soon got up, her deep red fur barely dirty, granite black paws, clean. She stared at me again and like someone I knew she flicked her head to the side and walked off, keeping her profile high. I raised my eyebrows not believing what I saw.
I shook my head, clearing a thought from it and soon carried on.
It had reminded me that I’d only found two of the four animals (well skin walkers). Bronson had happily told me his, unintentionally I’d learned Jay was the crow, but that still left the wolf and the fox. I didn’t know what they were to represent. I needed to find them, but how? How long would it take for me to see her again?
When I got home I met my dad’s gaze as he made toast.
“What the hell happened to you?” He asked eyeing me up and down.
“Ruben and his gang, that’s all,” I shrugged and suddenly wincing. I quickly went upstairs and left him to spread more promite on his rather black bread.
After I’d changed my shirt and jeans I rummaged through my drawers to grab something. I grabbed the dark black plastic cover and quickly flipped through the pages.
Full….Full…Full again….Full…. I did this for a while until I realised that there was no more room left to do what I had planned. Closing it carefully I crouched down to my underwear drawer and opened it. Carefully shifting the boxers aside (I refuse to wear briefs!) I found it. Still in its plastic, brand new! I tore the plastic off and grabbed a random pencil from the top of the drawers. Gazing at the end I decided a HB would do.
Sitting on the edge of my bed, I turned to the back of the first page and slowly drew a large circle. It wasn’t perfectly round but I’d been told I could do straight lines accurately. Then I drew four arrows, one vertically up, one down and two horizontal ones both pointing in opposite directions. I labelled the one pointing up, north and south for the one down; west for the one to the left and east to the other. Pausing I wrote knowledge next to the word north and did this for all the appropriate places so it was just how Nana Shima had told me (south- innocence, west- inner seeing and east- far seeing).
After this tedious task was done I took a while to try and give names to them. Bronson would have to be knowledge, (it was a no brainer!) Jay could either be inner or outer seeing, at the moment I didn’t know. That left…Innocence.
This was a problem, because I still had mine! (Hard to believe isn’t it?) Though there were times when I had been tempted…But something had brought me back before my animal consumed me and controlled my desires.
As much as I would have liked the idea, I could not afford to go through with it. Luna could get hurt from it, I would get hurt and what if I’d been unable to control myself?
With my brutal strength I could have easily destroyed her.
Feeling my face flush with dirty images I quickly scribbled fox next to innocence and then owl by knowledge. I heard my old man call out a see you before closing the door and leaving the house silent again.
I must have managed to fall asleep because I suddenly opened my eyes to find myself lying horizontal to my bed, my sketch pad resting on my stomach. Sitting up I heard the front door open and close. Thinking it was my imagination I quickly rubbed my eyes. I frowned as I heard some familiar clonking on the wooden floorboards.
Standing close to the top of the stairs I peered over the railing. I could distinguish the bare legs with the white dress that had bunched material at the knees and the wedge shoes.
Maxene I muttered in my mind deciding to confront her.
Why did he ALWAYS leave the front door unlocked? I stomped down the stairs to our hallway and stopped.
There was something strange about her. I couldn’t help but stare, she had her hair up in a loose bun, her chunky gold bangles and French manicured nails. I took one step towards her and she turned to me. I felt myself go pale.
What the hell happened to all her makeup? For once she didn’t look appear as a hooker. For once she was….Normal.
“Good morning,” she answered in a chirpy voice, her diamond earrings suddenly sparkling by the kitchen lamp. I felt shivers down my spine. The dress was tight but it had a high collar…
It was as if she wanted to dress somewhat modestly!
“Morning,” I muttered walking into the area and sitting on a chair. She walked around to the other side of the bench and grabbed a plate by the kitchen sink. She carefully placed it in front of me.
“Hope you’re in the mood for waffles,” she asked. I gaped and then quickly shut my mouth. The smile didn’t leave her face.
“Well?” She asked somewhat hopeful. I peered down at the food. Poking it with a fork I determined it was edible. Slowly I folded the pastry in half, aware of the gold sticky liquid trickling from the seams. Opening my mouth I pushed it in and closed my jaw. I chewed for a while feeling the chequered texture and the burnt sweetness of the syrup in my mouth. Once it was in small enough pieces I swallowed.
She still stared at me, waiting.
“Not bad,” I mumbled accidentally burping. She grinned.
“That’s great,” she answered and I suddenly felt bad. I’d treated her badly for years and when she suddenly cleans up I have nothing to say to her…
Wait…I was feeling guilty? How could Cole Kenward feel guilty? It was not like me.
She lost her smile and looked at me concerned.
“Something wrong Cole?” She asked I looked at her, our eyes met.
“Just tired,” I easily admitted and then I wished I hadn’t. She nodded.
“I thought you looked a little sleepy,” she added suddenly walking around. My eyes followed her and stopped as she came behind me. Her hand touched my shoulders.
“Here,” she said starting to slowly massage them. My head began to spin as she dug her fingers into the muscle. I blinked hard, trying not to nod off.
“Relax, “she whispered in my ear, I watched her dazed for a moment. And she walked around me to sit up on the bench. My legs were positioned in between hers as she leant forward, continuing to massage gently.
“How do you feel now?” She asked as I looked up at her. Her face slowly spun and I noticed her hair become lighter as well as her skin and her features change. It wasn’t long before I was looking into a pair of deep hazel/ orange eyes...
“Luna?” I breathed my head slowly spinning. Her face slowly formed that smile I adore.
“It’s me Cole,” she said simply pushing hair away from her face. I noted her scarlet blouse and flared jeans with the sneakers on her feet. It was her voice and everything. Slowly leaning forward she released her hands and placed them at her sides, leaning back on the bench. I gazed at her head on, her eyes deep in my.
“I- I don’t believe it,” I stammered, eyes wide with joy.
“It is me Cole…” Was all she could say before I silence her; my lips pressed gently against hers. I felt her respond back as she opened her mouth slightly. I felt her shudder under my touch as I clutched her around the back. She continued to follow me. To touch the top of my lips and to go back to the normal position, with our mouths interlocked.
I leaned in and she slipped off the bench and into my lap where she touched my neck gently and caressed it as we continued to kiss. The adrenalin was racing and I could barely contain myself.
“Mm,” I quickly mumbled before we tore apart for a while as we both gasped, I sat staring at her while she did the same. I swallowed a lungful of air.
“We’re not finished yet!” I decided and she latched her lips back onto mine. I felt my body tremble as she opened my mouth to dangle her tongue in. I was caught unawares and suddenly snapped my teeth together.
She winced. I opened my clasp and she put her tongue away.
“Ow, she mumbled, before peering at me, her eyes flaring with lust. I had to blink hard.
“Luna… I’m…” I was cut off as she forced herself onto me again, slowly curving to the side of my face where I was smothered on the cheeks. I felt her clasp my shirt and start to run her hand underneath it.
“Whoa there,” I joked nervously. “Isn’t this going a bit too far?” I asked as she came back to my head on view.
“Cole Kenward is not a child,” she said deeply kissing me hard, letting our lips smack as she withdrew quickly, and placing her hands on my face.
“Cole doesn’t need a girl, but a woman to fulfil his desires.” She started to kiss again and I slowly closed my eyes letting myself fall to ecstasy…
Oh my Gosh I paused blinking hard. I heard Tony’s thoughts mingle in my head. Then I stopped, stared at the person on me. My stomach churned of the waffles.
No….This isn’t her. Anger rose in me as Luna slowly moulded into the conniving witch that was on me.
“Stop,” I demanded, reaching forward to the edge of the bench. Clasping it I let the chair fall from under me and to the floor. I stood up and threw her off me and onto the floor, immediately changing to Maxene.
While she lay on the floor, her hair loosened from the action I stood up straight wiping my lips, ashamed. She soon sat up.
“Well Cole, are you happy now?” She asked slowly sitting up, “I try to help you and all you do is lose it. What was it? Did Tony say something? What about that lame excuse of a girlfriend who just disappears without telling you when or if she’ll be back!”
“Bitch,” I muttered wiping my hand across my mouth in one movement. She stared at me, gaping.
“Just when I think I’ve treated you badly and consider apologising to you. You trick me into making out with you when I have my heart set on Luna and only her!” I exclaimed.
“Y-you’re nothing but a…” I gasped focusing on her green eyes. I pictured the moody animal I’d nearly trodden on that morning. Its eyes staring back angrily.
“It was you!” I exclaimed, “You’re the vixen!”
“So what else is new?” She sniffed, getting to her feet, finding her clutch person and storming past me.
“I won’t forget this Cole! You could have had me. But now you’ve lost the opportunity!”
“I wouldn’t say I’ve missed out on anything special!” I answered back. She huffed and opened the door before slamming it shut. I stood there dazed for a moment. I suddenly touched my lips again. Her designer perfume stank on me. I rubbed my cheek with my hand and sniffed it only to find the smell there too. Luna came to my mind.
Luna…I hadn’t even… A sense of remorse washed over me. Starting to shake I clasped the edge of the bench as I slowly lowered myself to the floor. My knees gave way and I sat awkwardly. My heart pounded dismally.
What have I done?