They warned us...
They knew this was happening... but being ignorant and clueless we ignored them. We didn’t think it was possible for another race to over-power us.
We thought that they were impossible. We thought they were just myths.
Boy... were we wrong.
Now, almost everyone I knew was dead or they had vanished. Our world had literally turned inside out and started killing us. It was as if suddenly all havoc had been unleashed on Earth. Terrible storms, horrid monsters, and even Mother Nature was yanking at our throats.
Now everyone was going to die, just because we didn't think it could be real.
My hand ached from writing out the letter. I didn't honestly know what I was doing, but some small part of me thought that it could be possible to find help. Where and from who, I didn't know. I climbed out of the chair, pushing it under the desk. I walked over to the bed, sitting down and crossing my legs. I looked out the window into the darkness with an expressionless look. In a few hours, the sun would rise, and so would our pain as they returned.
I rolled over and buried my face in the pillow. I didn't want to have to keep living in the shadows and hiding from the terrible monsters that wrathed our earth. But sadly, there was no where I could go. No one who could help me. Not now.
I heard footsteps outside the window and stiffened. A small part of me wished that it was a human, but I knew it would never be. I shivered and silently slid off the bed, my sneakers squeaking on the ground. I winced and fell to my hands and knees, crawling over to the closet. I slid into the closet, pushing clothes out of my way. I slid to the back, closing the shirts back to block me from view. Wrapping my arms around myself, I silenced my breathing and listened in.
“Is she still here?” a gruff voice whispered.
“I smell her fear,” a female replied, her voice patient. “She must be.” I tensed at the sound of hearing actual human voices, the first ones in many weeks for me. Their footsteps got closer as they stepped into the house. Were they looking for me? Just the thought of it made me tremble. My heart pounded and I felt dizzy with fear.
“Amethyst?” the female’s voice called out. I shook at the sound of my name, that the monsters knew my name. They kept walking through the house, the male flicking through random objects and letting out undetectable curses. Slowly they began to walk up the stairs, and split up to look through the rooms. Someone pushed open the door and walked into the room where I was hiding. I gulped and backed up against the wall of the closet, shaking and watching the doors with wide eyes. I heard someone go across the room to where my letter was. They brushed the pen off of the paper and lifted it.
“I was only fifteen when the Veil broke,” the female read out. “I watched everything crumble to despair. First- people started acting up, becoming anxious and abusive. Then, groups of teams came out, giving speeches about the Veil. What havoc it would start in a few months. How terrible, terrible things would come and try to take over Earth. They told us of what they are, and that if we wanted to save ourselves that we should go with the teams. A few people shyly followed them. I wish I had gone. They warned us... They knew this was happening, but being ignorant and clueless we ignored them.” I heard her slam the paper down onto the table. “D*mn right they did,” she said with a growl creeping over her voice.
She walked closer to where I was, and suddenly light sprung across me as she yanked the door open. I shrieked and covered my head, looking up at her with fear. Only, what I saw wasn’t some demon or twisted goblin. It was a person!
“Get out of there,” she demanded, reaching in and grabbing my arm to pull me out. I barely had time to stand up as she yanked me out and I stumbled at her strong yank. She looked me over like I was something disturbing, her nose curled slightly. I froze and looked her dead in the eyes. I wasn't expecting to see such life in her eyes. A small panic filled me at the hard determination and wild power flaring behind the dark blue eyes she held. She smirked, looking me over as I looked over her.
A tangle of dark blond hair fell around her face, shadowing the tan skin and faint splash of freckles. She had unnervingly powerful eyes, high cheekbones, a round nose and a pointed face. Her complexion was smooth, and a small smile caught at her ruby lips. Her shoulders sloped back and let down into long, muscular arms covered with scars from a battle life I assumed. Her stomach was skinny, but I could see her abs through her shirt. The woman’s hips were smooth, and her legs were muscular and lean. She looked very energetic, outdoorsy and like she could kill me in a second. I grit my teeth and looked away.
“You’re Amethyst right?” she asked, tilting her head with a slight movement that reminded me of a cat. I glared at her, trying to find my voice.
“It’s Amey,” I croaked. “How do you know me?” She chuckled, her eyes lighting up.
“Well, I was told that there was still a girl around here,” she said smoothly, glancing around the house. “Is this your room?” I blushed and shook my head.
“No, I ran in here when a bear-thing tried to grab me. I’ve been hanging out ever since,” I said sheepishly, glancing up at her. She shrugged, patting me on the back. I awkwardly stumbled forward, not wanting her to touch me until I trusted her more. While the other side of me wanted to drop to my knees and beg for her to help me. She glanced me over, obviously noticing how my eyes glowed with anger. To stop the awkward silence, she stuck out her hand.
“Hi, I’m Valentina,” she said with a warm smile. I chuckled, sticking my hand in hers. We both tested each other in firmness of our hands as we shook. Valentina pulled away first, placing her hands on her hips. By the way she squared her shoulders, drew in her stomach and lifted her head just screamed that she demanded respect and expected it.
Suddenly, a tall and extremely muscular man walked into the room. I backed up and looked at him with wide eyes, wondering if this was the man from before. He looked me over and scowled. With a swift and quick movement, he lifted a gun up, pointing it to my chest. A snarl was written across his face, and his dark brown eyes glowed with fury. I let out a small choking sound and lifted my hands up in submission.
"Stop that!" Valentina growled, stomping forward to smack him on the arm. He looked at her and lowered his gun, but kept his eyes trained on me.
"Who is she?" He asked with a deep, flat voice. I glanced up at him boldly and crossed my arms. He was definitely the man from before. Valentina glared at him angrily, shaking her head. I had the impression that he did things like this quite often.
"This is Amey," she confirmed, looping her arm over my shoulders. The man tilted his head slightly and grunted.
"That's her? I thought we'd find a dead corpse or something," he grumbled. I felt Valentina's arm stiffen and she pulled away from me reluctantly.
"We all did," she admitted but her voice was still fierce. "She's lucky to still be alive." The man nodded in agreement.
"Lucky?" I croaked. "I'll have you know I fought many monsters to get here," I said, my blood bristling. It annoyed me that so many people, even complete strangers, thought I was helpless. Valentina glanced at me, her eyebrow raised with interest.
"What type of monsters?" asked she, stepping to look closer at me. I guess she wanted to see if I had any notion of being muscular and able to fight.
"Uhm... I don't know," I said slowly. Valentina cursed and shook her head.
"What do you think they were?" she asked with an impatient voice, her blue eyes challenging me. I gulped and shrugged.
"A demon, a couple goblin-things and a werewolf," I said slowly, my voice quavering. Horrible images of monsters passed into my mind, making me tear up again. Valentina and the man exchanged glances. Why did she want to know what I had fought?
"A werewolf?" Valentina pressed and I nodded. "What did he look like?" I glanced at her sea blue eyes with confusion.
"He was... Tall and really furry. But he was gross and slick with blood and mud. He kept changing from chasing me on all fours to two feet," I shivered slightly as I remembered his gruesome howl. The man grunted angrily, shaking his head.
"James," he spat, as if the name completely disgusted him. Valentina had a look of sadness etched across her face, and she tapped the ground with her foot. I glanced at her and she half-smiled at me when she noticed I was watching her. She dipped her head respectfully, trouble and concern clear in her eyes.
"Do you know what happened to him?" She asked, her voice hiding and emotion I couldn't tell. Remorse? Sadness? My eyebrows furrowed with confusion to why she wanted to know so much about him.
"I-I don't know," I stuttered, my heart still pounding. The square-shouldered man glanced at Valentina and and tucked his gun under his arm.
"Valentina, I think we have been here long enough," he glanced at me. "I think we should go back now." I looked at him and then Valentina to see what she thought. She nodded and began to walk out of the door, then paused. Valentina spun and looked me dead in the eyes.
"Stay close, Amey," she looks me over and her lips almost curl. She has a cat-like look to her again, and I stiffen with embarrassment. Valentina turns around and marches out of the room. The man looks at me and gestures to the door, his eyes on my expectantly. My eyes widened and I cautiously follow after her.
As we walk into the hallway, Valentina glanced back at me. We stop as Valentina peers around the corner and then continues on walking. I felt my heartbeat quicken and I swallowed nervously. I decide to follow her before the man gives me another glare. I nearly trip as I walk forward, and the man catches me by the hip and stands me up. I gag silently and follow after Valentina as she silently steps down the stairs. I step forward and wince when I hear the steps creak. I stiffen at the loud sound and I can hear Valentina hiss with annoyance. I wondered if I really should trust them, or if they might just lead me outside to the monsters and kill me. I swallowed a shiver and placed my hand on the wall to balance me as I trailed after Valentina.
Soon we had reached the door and both of them paused, lifting their heads and turning their noses to the sky. My eyes widen and I backed up slightly, placing my palms on the wall. What in the world were they doing? Smelling for monsters? Valentina glared over her shoulder at me.
"That's exactly what we are doing," she said flatly and I squeaked. Gritting my jaw, I dipped my head low in shame. Figuring I accidentally said that out loud; I blushed.
Outside, it almost felt normal. There was a small breeze and the air was fresh and cold since it was still nighttime. Valentina strode forward bravely, drawing her shoulders back. As she walked, her boots clicked on the gravel, and I looked back at the man. He smiled at me and brushed past me to go to Valentina. I blushed and followed after them. After a few minutes of walking between houses, I decided to speak up.
"Where are you taking me?" I said cautiously with a small voice. Valentina glanced at me and smiled.
"I'm taking you to the pack, Amey," she replied proudly and the man glanced at me curiously. My eyes widened with surprise. A pack? A pack of what? "A pack of therians," she replied. I glance up and blushed. Gosh, I need to stop that.
"Stop what?" Valentina asked, drawing to a stop so she could look at me. I paled and my heart pounded in my ears.
"Stop s-saying my thoughts out-loud," I said sheepishly, feeling nervous under her hard gaze. Valentina looked at me to see if I was serious, then started laughing. I swallowed and stepped back.
"No, no," she cried between bursts of laughter. "I was reading your mental voice," she said. Due to my confused look, she continued. "Practically your thoughts." I stared at her blankly, and the man shook his head. With a grunt, he walked forward and placed his hands on Valentina's shoulders, leading her forward. I smiled at him gratefully and we kept walking. I teared up at the fact that I could not hear any birds singing, and a soft breeze blew around me. It carried the hints of rain, and I winced when I realized that the sun was rising.
Both of them paused and smelled the air again, Valentina's nostrils rising and falling. I cleared my throat, and the male glanced back at me, smiling softly. I looked him in the eyes, and his brown eyes filled with amusement. He chuckled and walked over to me.
"I'm sorry, I don't believe I introduced myself to you," his voice was still gruff but had a pleasurable tone to it. "I'm Grant." I smiled awkwardly at him, glancing at Valentina to see if he was just being friendly or if he was flirting. By Valentina's hard glare, I imagined he was being a flirt.
"Nice to meet you, Grant," I said kindly. I dipped my head and silently stepped past him to walk up to Valentina. She smiled, but I could tell it was forced. Valentina patted my back and led me forward. I felt her move, and I assumed she was turning her head back to mouth something at Grant. Hearing a squeak of protest from him, I figured it wasn't very good either.
The sky had changed from a navy blue to a pumpkin orange. I admired all of the puffy clouds as all three of us walked onwards. I had no clue where I was going, Valentina was buried in thought and Grant had his gun pointed everywhere he heard the slight rustle. I had to stifle bursts of laughter at just watching Grant flinch and jump at every little sound. But my joy had quickly faded away as we kept walking. My sneakers were drenched from the wet grass, and my toes stung with every step I took.
To keep my mind off of things, I decided to survey the surroundings again. The trees looked over us, and the grass felt cold as it brushed against my ankles. All of the plants across the city were overgrown due to the lack of humans to cut them. The streets were exploding with litter, and I gazed with interest at the graffiti covering the brick walls. The air felt almost clean without car fumes, but still it had a sense of dread to it. My heart felt empty as I peered through the dusty windows into empty shops and the rotting merchandise. From time to time you would find a shop where the windows were broken and the floor had dried blood and bits of things I didn't even want to acknowledge. Valentina ignored all of it, walking forward with a demanding stride.
Soon, we had walked through the entire city. I looked forward and saw rolling hills, thick forests and just the joy of nature ahead. Why have we seen no mention of any monsters? Have they gone? My heartbeat quickened with excitement at the thought. Valentina smelled the air again, her dark blue eyes glowing with excitement. I glanced at her with confusion as she quickly began to walk down the hill to the forest.
Suddenly, a low howl filled the air and rang through my ears. My heart started pounding and I felt extremely dizzy. I fell to my knees and began to shake with fear. Oh no, he's back! I can't let him find us again! We have to get back to the city where we can hide! I desperately tried to push myself up to no use. Grant appeared by my side and lifted me, wrapping his muscular arms around me. I blushed and he held me tight to his chest, breathing down my neck.
"It's okay," his gruff voice whispered. "They're one of us," he said slowly. My eyes widened at the thought and I slowly pushed him off of me. He didn't fight me, and slowly he walked back up to Valentina. Valentina's face was twisted in a snarl of annoyance and she glared at me.
"We have no room for kittens," she snapped before continuing down the hill. “The weak will die, and then there will be more room for the strong," she said firmly, her words charged with energy, as if daring me to challenge them. "Earn your place." My eyes burned with tears, but I couldn’t cry in front of her. I swallowed back the lump in my throat, and tried to keep my words steady.
“If I am so weak then why did you come find me?” I asked defiantly, staring her in the eyes. In a split second Valentina leapt through the air, but was intercepted by Grant. He threw her to the ground and glared at Valentina, crossing his muscular arms over his chest. I watched her face turn white with shock and she slowly sat up.
"Let's go," Valentina snarled as she stood up. I winced at her tone and looked sheepishly at Grant. He was still bristling with anger and stepped in line beside me as we got closer to the woods. I was terrified that Valentina was still angry at me and might try to kill me. I glanced at Grant out of the corner of my eye. Gosh, he was such an older man and was definitely not my type anyway. My nose scrunched with disgust at just the single thought of me ever accepting such an older, gruff man. I shifted my thoughts back to the present. My heart thudded with continuous fear, but I said nothing and looked ahead bleakly.
The orange sun shone down on the forest, making all of the trunks golden and the leaves look almost purple. I was never a big fan of the forest before, hardly ever going out to visit or living near enough to where I could see it every day. I was amazed to see how beautiful and peaceful it looked, like a world untouched. A smile spread across my face as we entered the shade of the forest, and I reached up to gently feel the leaves. They felt normal, natural, they felt real. Valentina looked back at me, an amused look crossing her face. She must not have been mad at me anymore.
Valentina pushed through a wall of vines and beckoned me though. I gazed at the green plants dangling from the branches of many trees, sunlight shining through their leaves. I grit my jaw and cautiously stepped in. I was instantly embraced by coolness and a soft humming sound. Grant smiled and watched my growing wonder as we approached a waterfall. My eyes widened with pure amazement.
The waterfall was grand, surely the first I had ever seen. Crystal water tumbled over the side of a small rock hill, twisting down and hissing. The water rippled and shone with glory. My mouth spread into a goofy grin as I reached my hand in towards the waterfall. I could feel mist surround my hand and I trembled with excitement.
"It's beautiful," I said dreamily as Valentina stepped up beside me. Her blond hair was now pulled into a rough ponytail and her hard blue eyes stared out into the water. She nodded without glancing at me.
"They call it Falling Grove. They say that a few years ago a couple came here on a date, and ended up getting caught in a storm. Terrified, they ran to try and get out of the storm but ended up falling in," Valentina's voice was distant and her cheeks were flushed. "Ever since then it's been known as the Falling Grove." I looked at her to see if she was serious, and quickly came to a decision that anything she said was always going to be serious.
"That's.... Scary," I said softly. Great job, just state the obvious why don't you? I blushed and looked away when Valentina looked at me with confusion. Suddenly her eyes widened and she reached forward and yanked me backwards. I yelped and tumbled forward, my arm stinging where her fingers had been. I looked down and paled. A twisted dagger stuck out of the ground right where I was. Valentina now had the responsible, strong look across her face as she pushed me towards Grant.
"Get her to safety," Valentina growled as another dart shot through the air and landed beside her. "Now!" Grant barely had time to push me toward the waterfall before dozens of daggers started falling all around us. He walked me into a dark cave, and I flinched at the metallic smell of dirt and rock.
"Valentina!" I screamed as a cloud of darts showered around the cave entrance. I tried running forward to help her but Grant grabbed me and held me tight. I struggled against him uselessly. As his arms tightened, I stopped and spun around to glare at him. The idiot!
"Why aren't you helping her?" I snapped, my face red with anger as the sky thundered. I could hear snarls and the sounds of people running. Valentina's voice cried out and I winced. Grant had a look of shame written across his face.
"She gave us orders. It is my duty to carry out the orders," he said with his gruff monotone. I crossed my arms and backed up as I saw shapes moving outside of the cave wall. If she died, it would be all his fault. My eyes welled with tears at the sounds of snarling and screaming. I couldn't hear Valentina anymore, but there was definitely a dozen or more people fighting outside of the cave.
A shape tumbled into the cave and Grant rushed forward. It spotted something moving and the thing lifted its head, snarling. My heart froze at the sight of the most gruesome thing imaginable. Its face was jagged and dark brown, round and with spikes for ears. Its nose was long and crooked, bare-looking to where spikes covered its cheeks. It bared long, rotten fangs and snarled, his ruby red eyes narrowing. My chest squeezed and I was frozen with fear as the beast snarled. It stood, a long tail swinging from its red and bloody body. Grant growled and leaped at the monster, swinging a fist at its head. The beast duck and spun, his tail slicing across Grant's stomach. Grant ignored it and drove forward, smashing his fist into the beast's stomach. I watched it crumple around his muscular hand, and it let out a hissing squeal.
The sound was horrifying and I moved to cover my ears. It was all too gross, watching the beast throw up blood all over Grant and then slide to the ground. I was already curled up in a ball, shaking as tears dripped down my cheeks. Grant turned to me and his face softened at the sight of me. My stomach curled at the site of blood spilling from the cut across his stomach, and I lifted a shaky hand to point at it. He nodded and slowly walked towards me.
I wanted to retch, but I did my best to swallow it. He told me what to do so I could help him. I helped him take his shirt off and striped off the parts that were already drenched with warm blood. My hands were red as I pressed his shirt to the wound, wincing as my fingers pressed into the flesh. Grant made a small growling sound in the back of his throat, and placed his hand over mine so he could apply the right amount of pressure. I blushed and pulled my hands away, letting him take over completely.
Grant glanced up at me with confusion and I wouldn't meet his eyes. "Does it hurt too bad?" I ask, looking at the ground beside me. Grant glanced away once he realized what my problem was.
"Nah, it wasn't too deep. Are you okay?" His voice had a caring tone to it. I nodded and bit my lip, looking up towards the cave entrance. I heard a few barks and the hair on the back of my neck stood up. Animals? Why are animals out there? Grant stiffened and looked to the entrance.
"They must be here," he muttered to himself, his brown eyes seeming to glow with worry. I glanced at Grant, my chest feeling heavy with the recent events. Who was he talking about? Are monsters coming to kill us?
"Who's coming?" I asked softly, starting to shake with fear. I wrapped one hand around my stomach as nausea from the wound started to affect me. Grant narrowed his eyes and his lips pulled into a thin smile.
"The pack is here," his gruff voice was filled with joy. Now they could be saved. Now I wouldn't die. "The therians are coming!"
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