More Than Just a Fairy Tale Ch. 18byJaisen©
Hope you enjoy this latest chapter. This one was easier to write, because I've been thinking about these sections for a while. Just wasn't exactly sure where to fit some of these pieces in. I've had one section rattling around in my head for weeks. And yes, before you gnash teeth, I'm already working on the next chapter! My dear lovely partner is frothing for me to tidy up a few things and get back to the story. I keep telling him if he'd wash the dishes, I'd write... :)
Angie was anxious. George had said he'd pick her up at 7pm, and it was ten minutes past the hour. "Maybe he changed his mind. Maybe the car broke down. Maybe I'm just not really his type and he was just leading me on," she thought. "God, I am so nervous!"
Five minutes passed before headlights slew across her driveway. George stood up out of the car and headed for the house. She met him at the door.
"Angie, I am so sorry that I am late," said George.
"What happened?" she asked.
"I was ready to leave when I heard giggling in the back of the car. Sara, Ivan and Joe had hid back there thinking that they could go on our date," he said.
Angie broke out in giggles. She'd met the imps the day after her talk with Meg. George had thought it a good idea that she be introduced to the children. Bitty and 'Solda had been polite. Sara and the two boys had been curious that George would want to date someone so much littler than he was. It had been an interesting afternoon. They'd howled, pack hunted her around the yard and told every family secret they could think of including the fact that Meg was pregnant.
"Are you ready to go?" he asked.
"Yes, I am. Where are we going to eat?" she asked. George had promised dinner and a movie. Everything after that was optional.
"I thought that Chinese place on 5th sounded good. They make a fantastic Orange Peel Beef," he said.
"Oooh, that sounds good," said Angie. She grabbed her coat and they headed for George's car.
The Wonderful Temple was just that. George had ordered appetizers and Orange Peel Beef for the two of them. Jasmine tea steamed in the little teapot.
"This is heavenly," said Angie.
"I agree. Ysabel brought me here a few weeks ago. I've been looking for a reason to come back here ever since," he said.
They finished up their dinner and George handed Angie her fortune cookie. He cracked his own open and ate half while he read his fortune. He smiled.
"What does it say?" asked Angie.
"Great fortune comes to you in small packages," said George as he smiled. "What does yours say?"
"Love is an unexpected surprise to enjoy," she read. "Did you bribe them to give us these fortunes?"
"No, I didn't. Mine would read more like 'love is a cracker jack treat' or something like that," said George. He was a little flustered. "If you're ready, the theater complex is just around the corner."
"Yes, I'm ready to go," she said. Angie stood up and George helped her on with her coat.
George paid the bill and they headed for the theater complex. George had bought the tickets online so that they didn't have to wait. They had agreed on The King's Speech, although Sara and the boys had told them they should have gone to Rango.
It didn't take long for them to find seats. George took Angie's hand in his as they settled into watch the movie.
"That must have been so frustrating to be unable to talk," said Angie.
"I agree, but at the same time we struggle with it all the time," said George as they walked back to the car.
"What do you mean?" asked Angie.
"When we shift, the jaw, lips and even vocal cords change shape. If we are inbetween wolf and man, we often get a bit stuck. Right head, wrong vocal cords. Trying to go one way or the other can be a real pain and frustration," he explained.
"Oh! George, I'm sorry, I was insensitive. I shouldn't have suggested this movie. I'm so sorry," said Angie. "Oh god I screwed up!" she thought.
"Stop. You did nothing wrong. You had no way of knowing. Hell, the only one of us you've seen shift is Kevin," said George with a little more force than he expected. The last thing he wanted was for Angie to feel guilty about anything, especially a movie.
Angie blinked. She stood there for a moment trying to collect herself. George sounded so fierce for a moment that she shivered involuntarily.
George stopped, looked at Angie and then realized that he had scared her as the scent of fear touched his nose. "Angie, I... I didn't mean to scare you. I'm sorry. Will you forgive me?" he asked. He held out his hand to her.
Slowly, Angie took his hand. It dwarfed hers. She'd never seen puppy dog eyes on an adult, but she could see that he was earnest about not wanting to scare her. She moved forward and pulled the hand she held around her waist and put her free arm around him. They stood there for a moment just holding one another. Neither one of them moved. Angie went to look up at George and realized that she barely came to the bottom of the pocket on his shirt. She started to giggle.
"Angie?" George asked wondering what was going on now.
"I just realized how small I really am in comparison to you," she said. "I don't even reach your pocket," she said giggling.
George looked down and realized that she was right. He started giggling too. After a minute, he let go of her long enough for the two of them to walk to George's car.
"So, where to now?" he asked as they pulled out of the parking lot and into traffic.
"How about my house?" Angie asked. "Your's is a construction site and full of small children."
"Your house it is," said George.
They pulled into Angie's driveway and parked the car. Angie had forgotten to turn on the porch light and was having trouble seeing the lock.
"Let me have your keys," said George.
"Okay, but I don't know how you'll do any better," said Angie.
George took the keys and let his eyes shift just enough to see the lock. His night vision was superb and he had the door open in a few seconds. They went inside and Angie turned on the lights just in time to see that George's eyes were more yellow-gold than the blue they had been earlier that evening.
"Oh," she gasped softly.
George blinked hard a time or two and when he opened his eyes, they were their normal blue. "Sorry, I didn't mean to startle you, but I can see better as a wolf," he said.
"It's... it's okay. I just didn't expect it. I'm still so new to this whole thing that to be honest, I don't know what to expect," she said.
"You okay with this?" he asked pointing to his eyes.
"Yeah, it just startled me," Angie said. Taking off her coat, she draped it over the back of a chair and then went into the kitchen to make coffee.
George followed her and watched as she set out cups after filling the coffee maker. He wasn't sure if he wanted to start the conversation he knew was needed. "Damn this is difficult!" he thought. Taking a deep breath, he cleared his throat which made Angie turn around.
"What is it George," she asked.
"Would,... would it help if you saw me shift? If you knew what I looked like as a wolf and not just a man?" he asked.
Angie thought about what he said for a second and then nodded. "Let me get our coffee and then we can go back into the living room," she said. She turned her attention to the cups and poured the coffee. She knew that George liked his sweet while she took hers black. When she was done, they walked into the living room.
George looked around the living room. He wasn't sure how body conscious Angie was and didn't want to just flash her. He moved behind the couch and used it as a bench to lean against and started to take off his clothes.
"Oh! I'd forgotten about that bit," squeaked Angie. "I'll turn my back if you want."
"Angie, it doesn't matter to me. It's what you're comfortable with," said George.
"Oh, Okay," she said and concentrated on her coffee but didn't turn her head. She wanted to see him shift, and if she was nervous about him being naked, she'd miss the change.
George undressed quickly. The couch just covered him from the waist down. He took a breath and then shifted.
Angie thought she was ready for the whole man melting into wolf thing. What she wasn't ready for was having the couch shoved over nearly two feet while George changed from a large man to an even larger wolf. He was huge! Beautiful too. Tentatively, she reached out a hand to touch his head that was well over the back of the couch. She had just touched his head and began to stroke his ears when the floor began to creak.
"What?" was all Angie managed to say before the wolf scrambled for the area beyond the couch as the floor under him cracked and fractured. His forepaws grabbed the back of the couch which fell with him as he fell through the floor. Angie screamed and tried to leap clear of the disaster as her couch partially covered the hole that the wolf had fallen through. She heard the thuds of wolf, wood and plaster as he hit the floor in the basement. An indignant yip came up through the floor.
"Oh George! Are you okay?" she called looking down into the hole. When she heard nothing, she headed for the basement stairs. She flipped on the light as she ran down the stairs to where the wolf was trying to stand up amidst the wreckage from above. As he shook, dust and plaster bits went everywhere. Angie was trying to check him over to see if he was hurt. While she didn't see anything, her left hand came away with blood on it.
"George, where are you hurt?" she asked trying to find where the blood was coming from. The wolf was whimpering. His thick fur had saved most of him, except where something had scrapped his ribs. Angie found the cut which wasn't bleeding badly, but was still deep enough to worry her. "Stay put George. I'll go get the first aid kit," she said as she ran off to the bathroom.
Angie was back in a few moments with a washrag and a towel as well as a first aid kit. "Hold still," she told the wolf as she tried to wash away the blood. It wasn't bleeding hard, but sort of pulsed, which made her think it was nastier than she could see. Holding the towel over it, she wrapped it in place with the ace bandage from the kit. Then she pulled a blanket off the shelf and after putting it on the floor away from the wreckage, coaxed the wolf to lay on it.
"Stay put," she told the wolf. "I'll be right back." Then she headed upstairs to call the only person she could think of, Luc.
The wolf lay on the blanket trying to breath. One moment he was shifted and sniffing to see that the little female was fine and the next, he was falling. Something sharp had poked him and it hurt to breathe. Hurt too much to shift and let his other self deal with things. He wanted to get up, but he knew that the little female had wanted him to stay where she'd put him. "Little female smells good, is good. Must be good," he thought.
Luc heard the phone ring and grabbed it just before Meg did. They had just crawled into bed for a bit of fun and they had ignored it the first three times it had rung. "Hello, Luc speaking," he said into the phone. He listened for a moment. "We'll be there as fast as we can. No, just stay with him," he said and then hung up the phone.
"Who was that and why are you getting dressed?" asked Meg.
"Get dressed. That was Angie. George shifted for her and the floor broke. He fell into the basement and punctured something. Bleeding in pulses. Grab your cell phone and call Jeff as soon as we are in the car," he said as he pulled on the last of his clothes and headed for the car.
Meg was seconds behind him. She buckled in as he pulled out of the driveway and headed down the street. She dialed Dr. Jeff's number, the private one. It rang twice. "Doc, this is Meg, George shifted at Angie's house and went through the floor. He's hurt. Angie said he was bleeding with his pulse. Yes. Just left the house. Um... 1256 W. 181st Street. Blue house. Yes. See you there," she finished and hung up her phone.
"I take it he'll meet us there?" asked Luc as they rocketed down the nearly empty late night streets.
"Yes. How on earth did George fall through the damned floor?" asked Meg.
"Some of us get bigger, some of us get heavier. George does both. You think he's impressive as a human, you should see him in wolf form," said Luc.
"Oh," said Meg as this percolated through her brain. "And he's your little brother?" she asked.
"Yes. You should have seen Dad. Medium sized man, but the biggest wolf I knew of before George started shifting. He was probably just too damn heavy for the floor. Or there was a weak spot. We won't know until we look. Meantime, we have to get to George," he finished as he got onto a main boulevard.
"Angie must be frantic," said Meg. "I know how I felt when you were hurt."
"You think she's that attached to him?" asked Luc.
"Yes. She may not know it, but I've never seen her look at anyone like she did the night of the dinner party and I've known Angie for years. Saw her go out with guys, but never look at them like she does George,' said Meg.
"Oh boy," said Luc as he negotiated the sparse traffic. He knew he was almost there, but the car seemed to be crawling along. One final turn and he was on 181st Street. Angie was standing on the front porch as they pulled up in front.
"Meg, you wait at the door for Jeff, and I'll go with Angie," said Luc. He kissed Meg on the forehead and followed Angie around the damage in the living room to the basement stairs. As he reached the basement floor, he saw George laying on a blanket that looked the size of a postage stamp in comparison.
The wolf looked up at the two of them and whimpered. Angie moved to the wolf and sat down beside him taking the huge head onto her lap. The wolf whimpered but relaxed.
"Oh George. What the hell did you do?" asked Luc quietly. He took a look at the towel around the wound and saw that blood had nearly soaked the towel. He held the paw the wolf had tapped him with and put the other on the wound, applying gentle pressure. Luc had no idea of how long Jeff would be and this didn't look or smell good to him.
"You doing okay Angie?" he asked quietly.
"Yeah. A little freaked out at first, but I called you as fast as I could. If he fell through the floor, there was no way he'd get up the stairs, so I knew I needed help. Plus, I didn't know the number for your doctor," she finished. She was running her fingers through the fur on the top of the wolf's head. A head that nearly covered her lap.
"You did the right thing Angie. Jeff will be here soon and he'll see to George," said Luc.
"Okay. Why didn't George shift back to human form?" asked Angie.
"He probably hurts too much. It sort of makes our brains forget thinking logically," he said.
The wolf whimpered as Luc said this. Angie patted the wolf on the head and murmured to him.
"I'm going to see if Jeff is here," said Luc. He was loath to take pressure off the injury, but he knew that Jeff would have trouble finding the staircase. "I'll be right back," he said as he headed up the stairs.
Luc got to the front door just as Jeff pulled in next to his car. Jeff grabbed his medical bag and headed for the front door. "Where's George?" Jeff asked.
"Follow me. He's lost a lot of blood," said Luc.
"Damn. I was afraid of that when Meg said it was pulsing," said Jeff.
"Yeah. He's on the floor down here," said Luc and let Jeff go ahead of him down the stairs. Meg and Martha followed them down the stairs.
"George, This is Jeff. No Biting!" said Jeff as he knelt next to the huge wolf. "Angie, let me know if it feels like he's trying to lift his head."
"Oh, Okay," said Angie not totally understanding why she'd been asked that.
"If he lifts his head, he might be trying to bite Jeff," said Luc when he saw the puzzled look on her face.
Angie nodded. She wrapped her arms around the wolf's head gently. She'd be able to tell if he so much as twitched a muscle.
Jeff smiled at her and then looked to the wolf. The towel was soaked and a puddle was forming on the blanket. He cut the bandage and looked at the wound. He counted the pulse under his fingertips and the blood seeping from the wound. "Damn!" he thought.
"Martha, hold this to the wound," he said handing her a corner of the towel. Martha took it and pressed against the wound. This freed Jeff up and he grabbed a needle and a bottle out of his case. Filling the syringe, he grabbed the fur around the scruff of the wolf's neck. He injected the fluid into the wolf and then started to get equipment out of his bag.
"Jeff, what's going on?" asked Luc.
"He has a puncture. I don't have time to get him to my clinic. I've got to act now," he said. He checked the wolf's pulse again and then began to cut fur from around the wound. He sliced open the wound area and reached in to where the bleeding was emanating. Whatever had punctured George was small. However, it had nicked muscle and a bit of the diaphragm. Jeff opened the wound a bit more and then reached for his suture kit.
Ten minutes later, Jeff was sewing up the last layers of skin. He'd sewn up the damage and was now ready to bandage the wound. Martha handed him things without a single clue that Luc could figure out. Jeff started to wrap bandages around the wolf and realized it was impossible. He stuck medical tape to the fur and skin the best he could. After one last injection, he stood up.
"Damn, what the hell did he do?" Jeff asked.
"He shifted and fell through the floor," said Angie. "He was really wobbly and that's when I found he was bleeding. I tried to stop it, but I couldn't."
Jeff nodded and went to look at the mess where George landed. After a moment, he found a long nail covered in blood. "This is what got him," Jeff said. "At least it wasn't a splinter. Metal is a far cleaner wound. It nicked muscle and his diaphragm. Good thing he's so damned big. If it had been anyone smaller, we'd have punctured a lung."
"Jeff, will we have to move him?" asked Luc.
"No way we can. If he shifts, he'll rip open the wound. He will break the stairs in this form. Just look what he did to the floor. You must have some sort of rot or termite infestation there. My guess would be water damage though. He was just too damn big for your floor. He's going to have to stay in your basement for a few days if you don't mind Angie," said Jeff.
"Oh, I don't mind. I've got plenty of blankets. Just let me know what to do," Angie said.
"I'll leave you a list, and Jeff will have things to add to it I'm sure," said Martha.
Angie nodded. She looked around and was trying to decide where to start. Then something crossed her mind. "We must not call Ginny. If she finds out, she'll be back here so fast that Patrick won't even have time to blink," she said. "Oh, and the kids. They mustn't know either. They'd spill the beans in a second," Angie added.
"She's right," said Meg. "We have to get things organized as to why George isn't home tonight. Have to do it fast and get the word to Ysabel."
"Easy enough done. Just tell Ysabel that George is spending the night at Angie's." said Luc. "It won't be a lie, and she'll just assume that George is having a grand time. I'll get Cal and Peter to go over and help with the construction work on the house. We'll get them to fix your floor too. We can all just keep up the illusion that George and Angie are having a lovely time," he finished.
"Um," started Angie.
"Don't worry Angie. No one will know a thing until we tell them. If they get too nosy, we tell them the truth. This is George we're talking about and we can explain the deception," said Jeff. "I know this isn't how you wanted the evening to end, but it will give you two more time to decide how you really feel about each other."