Katala and the Fox Ch. 02bysexycelestrian©
She woke up wrapped in Axel's arms. She remembered what happened and decided it was time to go. She could not let herself get close to anyone. There were no members of the council left but someone could still hurt axel or kill him and then she would feel the pain all over again. She could never live with that. She really would kill herself if that happened. She was afraid. Afraid of what she was feeling and afraid that she would feel the pain all over again if she let someone in. She was terrified and she couldn't stay. She snuck out of his arm, wrote a quick letter and left.
She ran as fast as she could. She never once looked back because she knew if she did then she would falter and go back. She ran into a hard chest. She looked into Isan's eyes. She gulped. He looked a little stunned to see her. She hadn't ran for more than three seconds so he could see the clearing behind her and see Axel behind her starting to wake. She bolted. He tried to stop her but she slipped out of his grasp and ran. Isan turned around to find Axel reading the letter. He suddenly looked up.
His eyes almost literally had fire in them. He crumbled the letter and threw it into the fire. He shifted into his fox form, the reddish orange fur seeming to be flaming fire, and sped off into the forest. Isan wondered what had happened to him that would make him like that, his angry form of fox.
She could hear him following her. She tried to run faster, she saw a tree and aimed for it. Suddenly she was tackled to the ground. The fox shifted and above her was Axel, in all his naked glory.
She gulped when she saw his flaming eyes, no longer green, but fiery red. She knew she deserved it, and she also knew that she had no choice. The letter had said "Cant stay, have to go, nice knowing you. Sorry to leave on such short notice, and I'm sorry we will never see each other again. But I'm not your type and I cant be with you. You wouldn't understand. Hope you have a nice life." She wasn't his type. He could have so many other more beautiful girls out there. She really didn't realize how beautiful she was.
She kneed him in the side and he grunted. She rolled out from under him and got up, facing him.
Ah yes the letter. He seemed mad. With more speed than she expected, he pushed her against a tree. His body quickly pining her, his speed surprising her. One hand held her down by her waist, the other by her chest.
His body pressed hers to the tree. She whimpered. "I told you before you're not leaving until I say you can." He whispered into her ear. He was confused, hurt, and angry, so angry. What did she mean she couldn't be with him? Why did he care? What wouldn't he understand and why?
"Your mine." He whispered in her ear. He bit her neck lightly and then harder.
He grabbed her waist and pulled her against him, grinding into her. She whimpered and moaned softly, trying desperately not to get involved. Don't get close to him. Don't let you walls down. Don't give in. Axel could feel her resisting him. He didn't understand why.
Was he being too rough? Did he frighten her when he angrily pushed her against the tree?
"Don't resist me, Kata." He said huskily. She turned her head away, whimpering, and cringing, then sniffling. He stopped grinding into her.
His anger instantly disappeared when he heard the tell tale sniffling, his anger replaced with worry. He placed two fingers under her chin and tilted it towards him, his eyes widening when he saw the silent tears running down her cheeks. "Kata? Whats wrong."
He started to wipe the tears from her face but she yanked herself out of his arms and starting backing up, hugging herself, starting to cry harder.
"I cant do this. Not again. Not after last time. I wont let myself get close to anyone to have that happen again! No, NO!! I can't do this again, not ever again!"
What does she mean, not again? What is she talking about, what happened before, axel thought. Isan had appeared next to Axel.
"Kata whats wrong? What did bone head over there do to you?" though it was meant to be teasing, he too was worried. She backed up into a tree and slid down it falling and sobbing as she clutched her knees to her chest.
She squeezed her eyes shut desperately trying to stop the memories from coming back, shaking her head back and forth, sobbing harder. Isan and Axel ran to her and knelt by her side, worried.
"Kata what's wrong."
"What happened Axel?'
"I don't know. I don't think I did anything to hurt her. She just started crying."
They rubbed her back and tried to calm her into talking, but she just continued to sob. Finally, exhausted and feeling like she just wanted to die, she told them.
"A long time ago, my parents brought me to a cave outside our village. It had a small cot, some food and water, and they gave me a knife. They taught me how to hunt and told me to stay hidden there. They left."
Axel and Isan looked at each other curiously.
"I was spared from the living hell the rest of my kind went through. I was born a long time ago. My parents stole me away from the world. I grew up in a cruel world that they tried desperately to prevent me from living in, to prevent me from having to live the life of a slave. I would have been a slave to the elven council, and when I turned sixteen I would have gone to the cave try and kill the beast and be killed in the process.
The elven council may have told the elves they were with us, but secretly they feared us and they killed us, making sure to go about it in a way where it seemed like they had nothing to do with it. There were few of us alive, and we all lived in the village. We were forced to do the horrible biddings of the council.
Every day, we were assigned a new task and if we didn't comply we were beaten and thrown to the beast that lived in a different cave closer to the village."
Isan looked at Axel, and Axel looked at Isan, both thinking the same thing. What horrible people would do this to a small race.
"When we turned sixteen, we knew our time was up. We would be sent outside to the cave and we would have to try and kill the beast. No one came out alive. Those that did without killing the beast were tied up and thrown in as a coward. It was horrible. Only a few of us were allowed to live long enough to have children.
Even the birth of a child couldn't bring a smile to our faces because we knew that they would only be brought up in a cruel world of torture."
Axel looked at Isan in horror, and Isan shared the similar look on his face. Isan shook his head in disbelief and disgust that she had to go through that life.
"We hated our existence but the elves knew not of what we suffered so they could not help us. We could never leave our village long enough to go to an elf and tell them of the anguish of our kind. We were always escorted when outside of our village, and kept from speaking to the elves by the council's guards.
They, in return, were kept from visiting our village with the simple lie that we craved solitude of our own kind. We were born to service the council and die young. No hopes, no dreams, and not one little child ever played because they were taught at an early age how to fight, how to use knifes and swords, and how to dodge attacks and defend themselves, all from the time they could walk.
For years, we lived in misery. No change, and no hope ever appearing. We did not pray for if there was a god or goddess, they would not have subjected us to this torture. This was the way of my kind for so long. We lived in fear and misery. Waiting 'till we turned sixteen so we could be freed from this living hell through death.
Then, everything changed. For a year those of us sixteen, and seventeen where left alone, and so we grew a year older. The council did no longer use us for its own devices, and we were left alone. My kind began to enjoy life as they no longer were forced to do the council's awful bidding and die. And my kind began to believe that times were turning good and things were changing for the better. For the first time in years, a glimmer of hope that their lives would no longer be so cruel and miserable began to grow.
Then, the massacre happened. They came, in the middle of the night on a moonless night, where everything was bathed in darkness. They brought the monster from the caves. No one was safe. Little children, babies, families, friends all slaughtered.
Our homes and our village were burned to the ground, with families in it. The rest were woken up in their sleep by rough hands and beaten before they were killed mercilessly. Daughters and sons watched their parents killed first, and then they came for us, the children.
Killing us quickly. It was the darkest day of my kind's existence. My parents had run away with me when I was young a long time ago to hide me and shelter me from the life with no hope that the rest of my kind had, and like a good little girl, I remained hidden just as they told me to do. They taught me how to survive and left so the guards wouldn't be suspicious. So I lived by myself, watching the village and my friends, imagining that I was with them. Then came that horrible night filled with the screams of my people and the ruthless killing of the innocent.
I witnessed the slaughter of my kind from my cave outside the village on a hill, and I saw my parents throats ripped out. It was a nightmare from hell come alive.
And I was there to bear witness to it, in the safety of my cave outside of the village. I ran with the screams of my people ringing in my ears, knowing that if I stayed, there was a chance they would find me there and if they did I would have no hope of surviving." She began to cry again but she shook off their hands.
"I still remember it like it was yesterday. I wa-was asleep and I heard the screams. I got up and left the cave to find houses being burned to the ground with people still in it. Children, grown ups, men and woman all were slaughtered. Beaten and mercilessly before they were killed. The grown ups were killed first then they went for the children.
They quickly murdered them by snapping their necks. They left the rest for the beast to kill. I watched in horror. I could do nothing. I couldn't move except to run. I ran away as far as I could and never looked back.
My whole life has been one big torment. I just want the memories to stop. Every night I have nightmares about it, I relive it." She began sobbing again. Axel and Isan were horrified. They had never heard a more brutal childhood story. Axel grabbed her and pulled her into his arms. She sobbed brokenly, burying her head in his chest and lying in his arms limply.
He looked at Isan and in his eyes were fury, horror, shock, and fury once more. Isan got up.
"I think we should watch over her. She could be emotionally unstable, or in danger still. I will go alert the alpha that she is staying with you." He shifted into his icy blue furred wolf and raced away.
Alex held the sobbing girl in his arms, now understanding what she meant before, about not being able to go through with that pain again. He realized that she was afraid to let anyone get close to her because she watched her love ones get murdered.
He vowed to show her that there was no harm in letting someone in close to her. He thought he was falling in love with her. And now he knew he was right. He held her close, stroking her back, holding her tightly.
Finally she calmed down.
He pulled back a little, tucking a stray strand from her face then cupping her face.
"Kata." He said gently. "Kata, look at me." He tilted her chin up to meet his gaze. "I will never let anyone hurt you and it takes a lot to kill me. You don't have to be afraid to get close to someone.
You don't have to be afraid to get close to me. I promise you I will never leave you alone in this world, either through death or my own choice." He gently kissed her on the lips, cradling her to him. He picked her up, cradling her in his arms as he began to walk towards his house.
She shook her head. She had to take all the stuff she got from the three monsters to her home tree. She told him how to get there and laid her head against his chest, feeling hollow and empty inside.
At some point, Isan met up with them along the way. They reached a big, BIG, oak tree. There were hand holds and foot holds for you to step on to climb the tree, hidden in the bark. She emotionlessly slid out of his grasp and started climbing, slowing so they could follow.
When they reached a wooden floor nailed in between the point where all the branches flowed from, he saw a mattress, books, weapons and magical items of all kinds. Also there were magical animals of all kinds.
When they saw her they ran to her and she knelt down to pet them all. Isan and Axel watched, enchanted by the connection all the wild animals felt with her, some of them dangerous but with her they were downright kind and calm.
She walked over to her magical item shelf and dropped the monster's claws, skin, and poison darts down onto the shelf before kneeling down to a miniature griffon like creature with an eagle head, cat body, and eagle claws and eagle wings. She squeaked and screeched in what sounded like bird and cat noises combined and the griffon creature responded before flying off.
Tato jumped onto her should and she nuzzled him, smiling lightly. Then she went over and sat on her mattress motioning the two men to sit on the floor in front of her.
She sighed heavily, rubbing her eyes before making another deeper tiger sounding growl, and a tiger the size of a big dog with gray wings walked up to her and sat next to her on the mattress.
She absentmindedly petted him. The tiger lazily closed its eyes and purred loudly. A baby dragon flew into Axel's lap and nuzzled his hand to be petted. A kitten sized silver winged white tiger cub ran up and stumbled in Isan's lap licking his hand and looking at him expectantly
. Isan laughed and started to pet the creature that laid down and settled in his lap. Kata just kept staring off into space. Isan and Axel looked at her sadly and concerned. They were horrified at what she had to go through as a child. They wanted to be there for her. Axel wanted to hold her in his arms and comfort her until the empty shell in front of them became Kata again.
"Welcome to my humble abode." She said in a small voice, with a small flourish of the hand. "You can stay as long as you want. There are two hammocks around here somewhere. Probably on the second level. Make yourselves at home. Other Snazleclaws will be following our scents to try and hunt down what killed the three others. But my tree is protected so they will not be able to follow our scents up it. They will just think we disappeared.
We will have to stay here a couple days. But I have plenty of books and magical creatures to keep you occupied. And you can practice with the weapons. I am going to sleep in the hammock. If you hear anything just tell Tato. You can talk normally, you could scream and they wouldn't be able to hear you because the sound bubble I put around the tree." There was a floor above them and another above that one, each one holding more magical items and books. She climbed up the rope ladder to get to the floor above them. Axel and Isan watched her leave. Axel's heart ached as he watched her go. Without axel having to tell him, Isan knew, Kata was Axel's mate.
Axel knew it too, but after hearing her story they both realized, it was going to take a lot to get her to open up again.
There were three platform like floors in the tree, each above the other like a house, the leaves and branches being the thin walls that you could brush aside to peak through but still protected against all elements, the branches creating a leafy roof for the third floor.
That was where she slept, and the second floor held books and magical items of all kinds, while the first floor was like the guest bedroom, with three hammocks and a sofa, and a rocking chair with nests with magical creatures of all kinds in them, some in the hammocks, and some on the sofa. They moved out of two of the hammocks for Isan and Axel. They both stayed awake for a while, minds full of turbulent thoughts. Finally they fell asleep.
They awoke to Kata screaming. Axel raced up the ladder to the third level. He jumped the last rungs and raced over to her bed, where she was squirming and whimpering, tears streaming down her cheeks, mumbling "No, no, no, no, please, no, mum, dad, no, no!" over and over again. Axel gripped her shoulders and gently shook her, harder when she started squirming and whimpering louder.
She woke up, screaming. The smell of leather and firecrackers hung in the air, and a strong, warm hand stroked her cheek. She threw herself into the strong, warm chest, sobbing hystericaly, her head resting under his chin, as strong arms wrapped around her, holding her close as she sobbed into his chest, clutching his thin, white, flowing shirt. He stroked her back as her soothed her, shushing her, and running his fingers through her hair gently, rubbing her back, and holding her close.
He nodded at Isan who got off the ladder and sat down nearby a big, silvery, fluffy cat with blue eyes, the size of a small dog. Isan would sleep with them, on a big cushion nearby, big enough for him, the griffon on it, and the cat. He sat down on the edge of it and started to pet the griffon. The griffon bowed his head to him, which was a sign of respect in the griffon language.
Axel and Isan noticed every branch above them had a dream catcher on it. Dream catchers of all shapes, sizes, and kinds hung above them, creating a dream catcher roof above them, sending off a strong, warm, safe feeling that made Axel and Isan feel protected and made them feel safe. They realized, they must have been to ward off the nightmares she had every night since that night of blood shed
. Not that it helped. Or so she told them earlier. Suddenly, a loud, deep rumble made axel, isan, kata, the griffon and the cat turn towards the corner of the room. It came from a tiger, the size of a horse, big, with curved horns, sharp, inky black claws, and spikes on its back and tail
. It came over to the bed and kata threw her arms around its neck. It closed its eyes and bowed its head at the two before nuzzling kata and licking away her tears. She gave a shaky smile and turned towards axel and isan. The tiger beast laid down, head in kata's lap as she stroked it, causing it to purr a little.
"This is Howl. He is a tiger guardian. Ever since that day, I felt a spirit watching over me for the first year. I think it was my mother. One day, I got the sense, she couldn't stay any longer, so she sent Howl to protect me. There are other guardians the look over me, and comfort me. When they arnt here and even when they are, howl is here. He always goes everywhere I go. Except for a couple days ago, when I hunted that creature, then stumbled into Axel. I think he knew something like fate had planned it out for me to meet axel alone, so he let me go alone to hunt the beast which led me to axel. I love howl. He is my guardian angel."
Howl got up, leapt through the leafy wall, onto a branch, since the tree made the leafy wall five feet thick of branches and leaves which made it easy to get to each level without the ladders or provided good places to curl up and read or draw or sleep and still be able to be hidden from view outside of the tree by the leaves.
He laid down on a branch to rest. Isan settled on the cushion, and axel pulled kata back to him, wrapping his arms around her, holding her tight. He laid them down, spooning her into him, still cradling her to him, gently, in his strong arms. He nuzzled into her neck, inhaling her smell. She smelled like something magical, sweet, and mystical. She really was one of a kind. All three fell asleep.