tagSci-Fi & FantasySpritely Fellow Ch. 05

Spritely Fellow Ch. 05


Sorry for the massive delay, but real life events coupled with a biblical scale writers block stopped me from writing. This is about revision twenty of the same part of the story. It's not near perfect, but I will get nowhere unless I move forward.

Also I do intend to make this into some sort of book after I get better at writing and can really hammer out some quality stories. Hope you all enjoy. Please leave me any and all comments and criticisms so that I might get better.


I had never been to an actual rainforest before, but I would imagine it wasn't as peaceful as Cassandra's soul world. There were no animals or insects here except for the ones she conjured up directly. Thankfully that meant no howler monkeys or noisy insects. No, her forests were serene and warm with a gentle breeze always present. It made a place where doing anything more than relaxing was almost criminal.

I was seated on a branch near the top of the canopy with a book in my hand. I rested my head on the trunk of the tree and let the warmth of the sun wash over me. I had read the book before, but I had not bothered to get a new one from Litria to bring into my sleep yet. I was beginning to think this book had run its course when Cass materialized further down the branch from me.

"Perhaps you could try Pride and Prejudice again." she said with a barely controlled straight face.

"Never again." I hated that book.

"I recall that book leading directly to your... discovery of your elementalist nature." She barely contained a snicker. I really hate that book.

"If by "leading directly" you mean I was enraged enough to try setting it on fire with my mind. IT worked but the fucking thing keeps growing back." I wish I could define just how much I hate that book.

"I think there is something romantic in the caution those lovers gave each other." Cassandra pulled her red "hair" over one shoulder to look at my reaction. I refused to give her the satisfaction.

"Oh I can see the allure that constant worry over "ifs" for people like them." I stretched out over the branch so I could nudge her with my feet as I worked the kinks out of my neck. "What time is it anyway?"

"Its nearly five I believe." I scratched my head as I tried to remember what I was forgetting. When I finally figured it out, I pinched the bridge of my nose.

"It's Wednesday isn't it." I looked at Cassandra and her satisfied grin as she nodded. I groaned and leaned back into the tree.

"I was wondering when you would figure it out. I would be willing to bet that Valeria is already waiting for you out there."

"That's a safe bet. I am seriously beginning to doubt that she sleeps and just hides in my closet until Wednesday."

"In your vanity cage? Your the only one that would spend more than a second in there." She was trying to get a rise out of me and it wouldn't work. I had several large mirrors in my closet that I salvaged from an old tailor shop that shut down a few years back. I actually needed it so that I could make sure there was nothing supernatural about my appearance before going downstairs to my parents or to school with friends. I once went the whole day with a wooden sheath around my neck without even noticing. It moved just like my skin an d I didn't have reason to scratch there. Valeria pointed it out right as I got out of school, but it was still spread around the school only reinforcing my nickname as the tree.

"It's not a vanity cage and you know it's necces-" She was waving at me with a grin on her face. As I opened my mouth to ask why a blaring noise started echoing throughout the soul world. I grabbed my ears as my surroundings fell away and morning grogginess crept over my senses. I was laying in bed with my arms at my side. It's always disorienting to come out of the soul world and take control of your body again. In related news, I am not a morning person.

The alarm continued to sound for a few moments as my lethargy outweighed my annoyance at the sound. A few more screeches later and I finally slung my arm in the direction of the alarm to no avail. After mustering herculean strength I lifted my arm again and reached for the alarm. It stopped moments before my hand reached it. Instead pf the cold plastic of the snooze button I was aiming for, I instead felt the warm feel of flesh that was turning off the alarm. I sighed heavily I flopped my arm back onto the bed.

"Good morning Valeria. Did you sleep well? Or sleep at all?" It probably sounded less sarcastic through the early morning slur. I forced my eyes to stay shut as I tried to trick myself back to sleep. It was too early for pretty much anything right now. It would seem Valeria did not sympathize with my plight.

"It's Wednesday, Master." I was very well aware of that Valeria.

"I bet it is. Give me like, 5 more hours and I'll be good to go." I tried to wave her off. Some small part of my tired mind wanted to believe that she would actually let me go back to sleep. It was outvoted by the logical parts.

"You said we could practice today. You even said I could pull you out of bed if you refused." I may have said something similar to that in order to placate a werewolf last week so I could sleep in. Past me is an asshole to the present me. I slowly pulled one hand to my face as I rubbed what sleep I could out of my eyes. She would actually pull me out of bed for this. She still insisted on calling me master and seemed to take everything I said as law, but she would disregard all of that if I jeopardized morning practice. I don't think I ever had that much motivation about anything at the time. I might have admired that gusto if it wasn't waking me up so early.

I swung my feet over the edge of the bed and struggled to sit up. When I finally got upright, my head fell into my hands for support. I peeked through my fingers at the clock next to my bed to see 5:14 and groaned.

"Master we don't have much time before Aurora takes her morning jog. We should really get to it.", Valeria said with some degree of impatience after my silence for a few minutes. After that sunk in I managed to climb up out of bed. Only 20 minutes to get out of bed after getting woken up. Pretty sure that's the all time record.

"Alright let's get to it then." I slurred as I rubbed the last of the sleep out of my eyes. She hopped to her feet and clapped her hands excitedly. Giddy would be the term for it, I believe. She was practically bouncing on her heels as I turned my head to stare. She immediately froze mid clap and we stood there locking eyes. I broke into laughter first as she blushed furiously and sidestepped as fast as she could out the door. I wiped the tears from my eyes as I got control of myself and cleared my throat. That woke me up. I turned on the light for the closet as I walked in and closed the door. "Wait there for a sec, Val."

"Of course, Master.", she said with the embarrassment still clear in her voice through the door.

Once inside the closet I pulled on the left mirror to open my wardrobe and pull out some jeans and gray shirt. I peeled off the loose fitting pajamas and slid the clothes for the day.

"Don't forget to check for any sprouts." Cassandra piped in as my shirt was half on. She materialized above me in her small form sitting on a branch that formed out of the air. Sprouts were our word for any supernatural changes to the body as the word "growths" puts the wrong image in the mind. I paused and thanked her as I pulled the shirt off and started checking my body. I turned my head slowly, using the mirrors to thoroughly look myself over. No bits of bark or lines of leaves seemed to be anywhere, save for under the skin of my back. I looked up to Cass and she nodded to confirm I was clear. I reached my arms up to put on my shirt, but paused as I looked myself over and sighed.

The reinforcement from my coalescence with Cassandra to my skin and muscles meant I hadn't bulked up as much as I'd like over the years. While I had grown to the considerable height of 6'9", my muscles hadn't maintained proportion. While I did have muscles that were of no small strength, the wood that was laced throughout my body meant my body was supernaturally stronger. Basically my muscles were more efficient and didn't need to grow as they were hard to tear. There was still some bulk to my mass with shallow lines to define the muscles, but my height made me seem thinner than I should. This led to my nickname of "the twig" which Chad hadn't hesitated to change to "the tree" as I grew. His inadvertently accurate nickname stuck. My hair had settled on a blend of blond and red hair that never seemed to grow past a few inches in length. My eyes had set into a dark red color that my dad marked as brown when he filled out medical paperwork.

Besides the obvious color palette, there were a few things that were becoming... off in my visage. My teeth were coming in just the smallest bit sharper than normal. My ears had a ghost of a point to them if you squinted hard enough. My skin seemed unnaturally clear for a guy my age who didn't wash his pillowcase as often as he should. I had a serious expression on as I leaned in closer and touched my ears. Cassandra floated into view behind me with an eyebrow raised.

"What is it Mykris?" I looked at her and seemed to notice for the first time that her ears which had once been formed of leaves retained their point as she developed her skin. My eyes widened and I opened my mouth to speak as she dematerialized and the door cracked open. A curious face framed in silver peered in to check on me.

A single surprised gasp escaped her lips as she looked at my bare back. I had told her of the mark , but I think it was the first time she had seen it in detail. I paused a moment before turning around and leaning into the mirror with my back. I leveled my gaze with hers as her face again flushed with blood and she closed the door.

"Sorry I thought you fell asleep again. I should have knocked, Master." Valeria was close to stammering in her flustered state. My ego began to inflate from the thought of me throwing her off like this and might of continued had Cass not cut in.

'I believe she was marveling at my addition to your skin," ,she said with her own vanity, "rather than your own...improvements if you can call them that.' Right where it hurt. I was proud of what few muscles I had gained. Any sign of my former elation was now thoroughly put in its place. I put on my shirt as I silently tried to compose a comeback before deciding it was a losing battle.

"Well, that's enough of that.", I answered to both women as I stepped out. I started walking out the door past Valeria, who was still facing away, as I tried to pull my mind back to the revelation I had.

'So the changes are working both ways. Cassandra?' I asked, knowing the answer. 'Beyond the stuff I can hide, I'm going to keep turning into... whatever I happen to be?'

'The changes that the coalescence has on your body are completely unknown, but yes it seems to be getting more intense.' She seemed like this had been weighing on her for some time before I noticed. Not surprising since she watched my soul for the better part of the day and could see these changes happening in real time.

"Valeria I'm dressed let's get to training." I was getting better at keeping track of multiple conversations at once. I couldn't do anything about the changes and could tell that Cass was keeping tabs on it, so I pushed it to the back of my mind and focused on now. I started with the mood. " So what are we doing today Val?"

"You know its been two weeks, but I'm pretty sure its cardio, Master." It's times like these in which I remember why I always won the gambling games we played. "I'll start stretching!"

Valeria cut in front of me as she hurried to get outside. If she got outside it would be hard to reason with her. The adrenaline makes her hard to handle. That and the fact she turns into a giant wolf creature capable of outperforming me in every physical test.

"That's interesting because I seem to recall that we had cardio two weeks ago." Quite clearly as I always lose every race with her. "Are you sure you aren't being forgetful, Valeria? You wouldn't be trying to skip soul training would you?"

"Oh no, I wouldn't dare try to skip such riveting training. It must have slipped my mind." Her smile quickly turned to pouting as she stepped into the yard with a diminished gusto. I turned to stop by the kitchen before following. A glass of milk with ice before the work out to get my engines primed. Normal people would be freezing this early in fall, but the cold didn't get to me since my soul changed. The chill woke me up enough to ensure I wouldn't fall asleep if I sat in a comfortable position for two minutes. I rinsed the glass and headed out back.

"So Val, you gonna finally tell me where it is you sleep every night?" I asked as I closed the door. I had asked this many times before, but to the same answer of-

"I can't seem to recall, master." I didn't need to look at her to know she had that coy smile on her face. I always asked and she always answered the same. That little game still managed to get a chuckle out of me. I wasn't even sure if lycans needed sleep. I offered for her to stay at my house, which she said she did, but I scoured that place and never found anything. She shows up in my room for morning practice on Wednesday's and in front of the house to walk to school every morning . This made me wonder something entirely different.

'Cassandra do you need to sleep? I realize my soul doesn't need rest mentally, but you are a physical manifestation. Don't you need to like... recharge?' A laugh echoed through my head.

'I needed rest long ago when we first met, Mykris, but no longer. Not since your soul evolved five years ago.'

'What does my soul changing have to do with you?'

'We are connected. When you changed I became...never mind. Valeria is looking at you and waiting to start. We will talk later.' I finally manged to force the door into place enough to keep the cold air out. It might not affect me, but the chill makes it uncomfortable for everyone else. I turned around to start training, but my words caught in my throat.

Valeria sat on her knees in the grass with the beginnings of dawn lighting the sky. The awakening sun gave a shimmer to everything in the yard, including her form. Over the years, her form had filled out into the shape her soul had taken. With her clothes removed, her form was far more visible, but still covered by a garment fashioned out of wood I created. Her hips flared out into a beautiful curve leading to wonderful legs. Her hair had a golden sheen to the silver tide that framed her face as it came to rest on her shoulders and chest. Arms remained sturdy in her lycan physique, but all the muscles lay softened under a thin layer of cushion that smoothed out all the edges in her form. Her ample chest was contained in the wooden garment I designed just for training purposes. Those intelligent, beautiful eyes looked at me, waiting for me. I shook my head to regain my senses. She was utterly beautiful and waiting on me to stop being an idiot.

"Let's check the gear first." I managed after clearing my throat. The wooden gear I mentioned was a thin willow-like set of armor that clung to her flesh via her soul. I created it to be nearly drained of energy so that it sticks to the wearer to sustain itself. As such it transformed when she did, thus removing the problem of her being naked after changing. I say "problem" only because there was no way in hell I would focus on anything if someone with a form that attractive was naked in the vicinity. Still I had to design the garment to balance movement with modesty.

It started below the collar bone with a flat piece across the top of her chest. A second piece covered bottom with a small hole in the middle to allow for ventilation. After that was several v-shaped pieces that overlapped like an armadillo shell. None of these pieces reached close to the side of the torso to allow full movement which added to the allure of them somewhat. Her pelvis was covered in a single piece shaped similar in shape to underwear with no sides and more bands to cover the front and sides of the legs and arms. It left a very large amount of gaps from which her smooth white skin could be seen, but it was better than nothing at all. Or worse depending on what your looking for.

Her soul wood gear was in fine shape, as was she. My eyes were having trouble focusing, so I needed to move on. Soul training offered one advantage that let me focus again. I could let lose as well and that feeling was near unbeatable.

The engines in me were primed and I finally got to fire them up. It felt like sludge burning out of my system every time I felt the fire in me start roaring from its stagnation and the wind scream into my lungs. My extrasight came rushing back to me as my mind connected to all the trees in the area. I could see the life all around me as the light of the morning faded away in favor of the brilliance I witnessed. Valeria's soul remained as crisp as it had been that night, but she could now freely control the partial transformations and had more energy to do so. Her pale soul shone brighter than before with more precision to its details than ever before. I let the energy flow from me some more, growing branches from one hand and absorbing them in the other and the wind swirled around me. I finally let it settle as I looked to Valeria. She seemed a little distracted by my display.

"Alright Valeria, soul training warm-ups. Partials for each limb followed by a rolling full transformation. 5 reps." I watched as her soul sprung into action and swelled its energy without activating it. "You don't need to worry about speed, just get the form down. If you fall behind your own rhythm you decide whether to let it slide or restart. Its your soul and you know how to use it instinctively."

It was early in the morning, but it didn't hurt to be careful. I let my energy run down my feet and race to the corners of the yard. Knotted rods of oak grew straight up to fifteen feet. They ended in an orb into which I moved my extrasight. I focused into each house checking on the inhabitants. All the souls that were up were busy getting ready or still not back from graveyard shifts in the city. Satisfied in our privacy for the moment, I turned my attention to another potential threat. From the middle of my yard I need look next to our house to see the problem. Aurora was not only already up, she was in her shower stage of getting ready. That meant we only had a little over thirty minutes before she was out for her jog. I must have been smiling, because when I looked back Valeria looked a little peeved.

"What?" She looked away and crossed her arms for a few seconds before sighing and turning to me.

"Are we going to start training soon, Master." she said with a bit of annoyance clear in her voice. I did one last quick sweep of any potential onlookers before nodding to her. A wooden cage formed around her clothes on the ground before raising up on a stump.

"Alright, one full transformation cycle to get your soul prepped, then straight into partials and speed shifts. Ready?" Her expression got serious as she moved to the other side of the stump to stand in the center of the yard. She checked the white wood on her wrists and joints before bending her knees slightly and nodding. I held my hands apart a moment as she tensed, then slammed them together.

I wasn't sure if you needed to "warm up" the soul before use, but I wasn't going to test it. Besides watching her shift was a thing of beauty. The aura around her seemed to pulse outward and increase in mass as it wrapped over itself into a dense fog that went into her and flooded the body. Everywhere it went, her body and soul reacted by swelling and spreading. Her core swelled first, depleting all fat reserves to help fuel the transformation. She hunched her back a moment, then unfurled as the energy raced down her limbs and up to her head. AS it started to pool in her head, the soul finished changing to the crisp form of an apex predator. Her body followed soon after with pale skin turning to silver fur. Her fingers lengthened several inches before capping off with black claws. Her foot lengthened to an extreme length until her heel became a joint itself and the balls of her feet became paws. Her head was swarmed by fur as her facial features blurred out of view. Her face seemed to swell outwards as tooth and fang became visible. Her eyes opened to show the large wolf eyes, intelligent and fierce, as her ears perked up and twitched. There she was after only a few moments, standing to a full height of eleven feet.

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