Bunnygirl Ch. 02bycellophanesmile©
"What do you mean my granddaughter's missing?" shouted the king, Annabelle's father.
"Oh, daddy." Annabelle collapsed into her father's arms, crying miserably. "She just disappeared, disappeared."
"Shh," her father said, enfolding her into his embrace.
Her mother had taken the news of Harley's absence in surprised silence, and still seemed to not believe it, standing there in shock. Zachary stood next to her, brooding angrily, a permanent scowl on his face since his daughter had gone missing.
"She wouldn't just leave without telling anyone, she wouldn't do that. Something must have happened. Oh father, what if she was kidnapped, what if she's hurt or scared?" Annabelle cried.
"I'll call all the men to go search for her immediately," her father said striding out of the room, perfectly confident that they would find her.
Annabelle stood forlornly minus the absence of her father's strong arms, but soon Zachary wrapped her up in his, holding her tightly.
"Uncle Zachary, Aunt Annabelle," sixteen-year-old Olive strolled into the room cheerfully, but wavered when she saw Annabelle's tear-streaked face, and her mother's stark white one.
"What's going on? Where's Harley?"
Olive and Harley were best friends, not just because they rarely ever met anyone else close to their age, but also because they did genuinely get along.
At the question, Annabelle burst into a whole new set of tears, and Zachary held her tighter stroking her hair.
"Harley's missing right now, sweetheart, but don't worry, we're going to do everything we can to find her."
"What do you mean Harley's missing?" Olive demanded, looking back and forth between their troubled faces.
"Oh, come here Olive," the queen said opening her arms, speaking for the first time since she heard of Harley's absence. Olive walked into her grandmother's arms. "Everything will be all right," the queen muttered, trying to comfort herself more than the stunned girl in her arms.
Harley stirred uncomfortably, her muscles were sore, and she seemed to be just one giant ache. She didn't open her eyes, just wanting to sleep a little longer, and she snuggled her face into her pillow.
But then she heard a distant noise, and she reluctantly opened her eyes. Where was she? Harley could feel the instant panic before she remembered what happened, being kidnapped, her wild escape attempt, that hateful man carrying her home.
She turned over, and found herself looking directly into his face. Harley automatically snapped her eyes shut again.
Cal laughed. "Nice try, but I know you're awake."
Harley opened her eyes to glare at him.
"Okay, sleepyhead, first thing's first, tell me your name."
"I want to get dressed," she said instead of answering his question.
"Tell me your name, and then you can get dressed."
"Harley," he repeated her. "Don't try to escape like that again," the harsh warning tone in his voice made Harley look away.
"You said I could get dressed."
"Here." He handed her a gown, nice, but practical.
"Turn around," she demanded when he just stood there watching her. She could feel that she was naked under the covers, and she would be damned before she would give him the satisfaction of changing in front of him.
"Harley dear, I've already seen all your charms, there's really no point to your modesty now," but despite his words, he turned around, crossing his arms against his chest. Harley got out of bed and quickly donned the dress he had given her, noting how the dirt had been washed from her body, her cuts cleaned.
"Okay," she said when she was dressed, prompting Cal to turn back around.
"You look very beautiful clothed, my sweet, but I think I do prefer you naked and wild, running free like a little rabbit through the forest," he told her, and she blushed bright red.
"Here," he said gesturing to a small table with a plate of food sitting on it, that she hadn't noticed before, "Come eat some breakfast."
Harley glared at him, stubbornly refusing to move. Did he think she would just ignore his rude remarks? Just let him make fun of her and be a docile little captive?
"Harley," he said warningly. Harley didn't like the way he was using her name, it was much too familiar, and she found herself wishing she hadn't told him what it was.
She crossed her arms, and wouldn't of moved at all if he hadn't walked over and forcibly pushed her the short distance and into the chair in front of the small table.
"Now eat," he told her, but she kept her arms crossed against her chest. Despite her spontaneous act of resistance, with the food sitting directly in front of her, and the smell wafting up to her nose, she was painfully aware of the emptiness of her stomach, and wished she hadn't started this foolish hunger strike. Now that she had, though, she couldn't give in and eat, her pride wouldn't let her, no matter how hungry she was.
"Come on little rabbit, I know you must be hungry," and as if on cue, her stomach let out a loud rumble, prompting a hearty chuckle from Cal.
"So now I know you're hungry. What is it? Do you want me to feed you?" and as he said it, he lifted a bit-size piece of bread and placed it at her tightly closed lips. Harley turned her head away from the food.
Cal knelt down beside her seated form, so his head was level with hers, and he suddenly gripped her head, turning it to face him, and she found herself staring directly into his eyes, mere inches from hers. Before she could react, however, he was kissing her! Harley had never been kissed before, and was taken by such utter surprise, she didn't have time to react, or even think.
No sooner had the kiss started, than it was over, and his lips were replaced by a soft piece of bread. In her state of surprise, he was able to push the bread past her docile mouth with ease.
Harley was going over what just happened in her mind. The kiss was so short there was really no time to enjoy it, but she was surprised to discover that it wasn't at all an unpleasant sensation. His lips were soft and quite pleasant, and she was left with the overwhelming desire to kiss him again.
Realizing what she had just thought, she was jerked back to reality, only to find him staring at her with a knowing grin on his face. She also realized that without even thinking about it, she had chewed and swallowed the bread he had forced into her mouth.
"How dare you," she stood up indignantly, knocking the chair over behind her.
"What?" he asked innocently from his kneeling position, looking up at her.
"What do you mean what? How dare you kiss me? You can't just go around kissing people!"
"Says who?" he asked her with that insufferable grin he was wont to do, that simply drove Harley crazy.
"Me!" she shouted, emphasizing her point by picking up the plate of food and throwing it directly at Cal's head. It hit him directly on the forehead with a dull thud that gave Harley only a moment of satisfaction, before she stared at him with horror.
The plate had tumbled to the ground, the food laying in forgotten disarray on the grass. And from his head leaked a small trickle of blood. Harley gasped. "I-I'm sorry," she sputtered out, not knowing if she should go try to help him or run away. In the end she just stood where she was.
Cal stood up, the blood trickling down over the scowl of his eyebrows. He just shook his head, "Come on," he said, picking her up and throwing her over his shoulder as he had done once before, "Just a few last minute packing and the camp's ready to leave."
"Come on people, we're out of here," he shouted to the general crowd outside the tent. Everyone seemed to hustle to leave, and Cal tossed her onto a seat on a wagon before sitting next to her.
"Calhoun, what happened to your head?" came a female's voice, though Harley couldn't see the speaker.
"Tripped," was Cal's reply while he wiped his forehead with his sleeve, winking at Harley as he did so. She frowned and looked away, crossing her arms petulantly, as he started the horses moving.
"You can tell me when you get hungry," he told her, "I promise to feed you, but only if you promise not to throw any more dishware at me."
Harley kept her face turned to the scenery, feeling the emptiness in her belly. She told herself he only got what he deserved, but then why did she feel so guilty? Her stomach rumbled again, and she realized that she had only succeeded in making herself suffer more.