Tales Of A Shifter (P1) - The Meeting

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Chapter 46 - Kail

Once the dream descended, Brandon would always open his eyes to a beautiful sight.

The sun rising was far out and beyond him. Starburst yellow and oranges blending with a fog wafting down from the heavens to coat the mountains. These sights were breath taking to him. The sun seemed so close that he often wished that he could reach out and touch it. But no matter how he strained he was unable to move from his spot fixed above the man.

Then Brandon would begin to hear them conversing in breathless pants. Two males voices beneath him, raised in anger. One voice was familiar to him, because it was his own voice echoing out into the void and sheer rock all around.

The man that looked like him stood beneath him. His twin was looking down into the fog and blackness. His hands were clenched at his sides as he screamed at the man standing behind him. It always struck Brandon how his twin was dressed in his dreams.

His apparel appeared far too ancient to Brandon, as though he was looking upon a king or a medieval lord. He always appeared to Brandon in his dreams wearing a long silken robe that could have been spun by a spiders own hand. A gossamer white gown that appeared at once beautiful, but powerful and strong.

Even his twins’ speech seemed alien, and yet Brandon understood every word that he said.

He ignored the heated conversation that carried on below him though.

Because Brandon had heard it all a thousand times before. A dark argument that hurt him every time he listened to it, but no matter how he tried to stay above the scene transpiring below him, he was eventually always forced to float down and bear witness to the dark play.

“.....and you will let them topple everything that we have worked to achieve? Can you see that they won’t just stop here!?” Brandon’s twin screamed turning back to the man behind him. “Kail, you have to understand that they are using you!”

Kail, the man that his twin addressed was for lack of a better word beautiful. And yet Brandon’s felt no physical attraction for the man in his dreams at all. He felt like thought like that were forbidden to him for some strange reason, so he admired the man, but that was as far as Brandon’s feelings for the man named Kail ever went.

Unlike Brandon’s twin who wore his hair short and cropped the man named Kail had a mane of black hair lain down his back and bound there in a thick braid. And his features though far from elegant or soft, were instead strong and inspiring and covered in marks and symbols. He appeared to Brandon as a tribal warrior.

Face decked out in black and white paints. He looked as though he had just emerged from battle, cuts and blood stained him and his clothing. Clothing that like Brandon’s twin was alien looking. It was nothing but a long gossamer gown, but unlike Brandon’s this mans gown was coal black and covered in etched golden spirals in the shapes of dragons. It was easy to see that the man named Kail not only out weighted Brandon’s twin but out stood him by a good two inches.

And then there was the long thin blade that Kail held loosely by his side. It was covered in fresh gore, but for the life of him Brandon had never been able to see any deep wounds on either of the men in his dream.

“In this I am noting but a tool.” Kail finally said back to Brandon’s twin. His handsome face melting into a grave scowl of regret. “You’re the one who drove us to this Brother.”

Brandon’s twin turned to the man named Kail as he raised his weapon before him in a daunting stance.

Brandon’s twin closed his mint green eyes, eyes so similar to Brandon’s, and looked down. Tears started falling as he bowed his head. “No, they brought US to this.” he said to Kail. “And you betrayed everything you knew for a lie. You will never ever be able to take this back.”

They continued to talk, even as Brandon began to feel the levity over him fading away. The dream was ending. He prepared himself for the darkness that was coming his way.

“No.” Kail smiled over at Brandon’s twin sadly. Kail raised the blade before him strawberry light glancing off the silvery blade in his hands.

“I betrayed everything I know for a future. We all knew that there was no going back, not for me. Or for you. I’m embracing the evils I have committed today, so that we can have a future. I’ve made the choice to do this horrible terrible thing to my brother....All that remains is for us to settle the score.” Kail finished. And suddenly the light reflecting off his blade was blinding Brandon.

The sun rose fully out of the fogy mountains, dancing on top of the clouds below it, and glistening behind the two men.

And that’s when Brandon fell. Every time it was the same.

It was as though an invisible stage had just disappeared from beneath him and down off the side of the cliff he plummeted. He lost sight of the two men completely as everything around him zoomed past his eyes and he fell into the darkness and the rocks below. For some reason he always dropped out of the sky at this point in the conversation, and for some reason he always woke after the darkness had stolen all life from him.

After feeling the rocks breaking him into a hundred bloody chunks and bits. After feeling his heart beat choking off.....he woke up choking for air, face wet with tears, and strangest of all was the pain in his heart.

Every time that he awoke from the dream the pain in his heart haunted him the longest. He sobbed into his covers, for the pain that like the men in his dreams felt all too familiar. But in the end the meaning behind it all, or even his own understanding remained alien and far from his soul.

But as always, once Brandon stopped the screams, took a few deep breaths and wiped his face of the tears; He fell back into a dreamless sleep.

Where he contemplated for the millionth time what it all meant. What became of the two men in his dream? Why did one of the men resemble him? And why did every single dream end with that damn fall into oblivion.

But no answers ever echoed back to him and he had come to accept that maybe none ever would. Besides there was more to worry about in Brandon’s life right then.

Like the fact that someone was knocking at his bed room door.

“Hey stranger! Brandon!? Wake up it’s been nearly two days.” Ezekiels smooth voice called to him, making Brandon open his eyes and realize that warm sunlight was beating against the window behind the curtains to the far left of his bed. “My mother wants you to walk around a little, stretch out your legs. So come down to the kitchen after you get dressed, alright.”

“No.” Brandon sighed softly to himself. He got so little rest, that he was reluctant to peel himself from the covers. Not really caring if Ezekiel could hear him or not he ignored Ezekiels shadow beneath his bedroom door and focused on getting back to sleep.

“Hurry it up!” Ezekiel suddenly growled from the other side of the door and banged on the door again. Brandon realized that he could probably hear that Brandon wasn’t making any strides towards getting out of the bed at all. “Hey are you awake in there?”

“Yeah!” Brandon barked at the door, making sure that Ezekiel heard him this time. “I’m awake all right!?” He dropped his heavy head back onto the bed with an eye roll. “Now just...give me a second.”

He felt groggy, and still slightly feverish, but he thought he was doing well enough to at least attempt to get up so the Shifter would leave him be. Besides Brandon couldn’t deny that he was ravenous. Warm and numb from sleep he managed to begin stretching the sleep away without any pain.

Until he went to move his arms and legs and roll to his side and shouted as excruciating pain shot across his stomach, hip and side.

“Fuck.....” Brandon dug his fists into the bed, feeling the leather gloves incasing his fingers instead of the sheets. He strained up onto the pillows and headboard as he looked down at his stomach. Slowly he reached down, removing the covers to reveal his lover hips and stomach. All of it covered in blood.

He gingerly raised his shirt and peered down at what he had done. Beneath the bloody wash towel he had wrapped around his stomach he could see that the inflammation around his torn stitches had become so dark and red that it almost looked like his side was rotting off.

Brandon sighed realizing that maybe his little stunt last night hadn’t been even remotely a good idea. “Oh great.....” he moaned.

“Are you ok?” Ezekiel called to him suddenly from the other side of the door. He sounded both impatient and worried.

“No....” Brandon forced himself to answer speaking up to be heard from his awkward position. “My stitches popped again.” he groaned hating himself.

A moment later his bed room door was pushed open as Ezekiel came partially inside. “What did you do to them now?” he sighed looking up from a pile of clothing he held balled under one of his arms toward the bed. “They were fine when I left the other night...”

Ezekiel trailed off when his eyes did finally fall on him. The first thing he looked at was Brandon’s bloody pants leg and his ragged side. That look much’s then it had when he had left the room last night. Ezekiel glared at Brandon and Brandon felt a chill as he worried that Ezekiel had guessed what he had done. But Ezekiel only hissed.

“What are you a dog?” he growled.

Brandon could almost feel the Shifters aggravation as he walked further into the room and sat the clothes in his arms at the foot of the bed. “? Am I gonna have to put a freaking cone around your stomach to keep you from popping the stitches Mortal? Could you not help sleeping with just a little bit care? “He said. He glared at Brandon’s stomach and rolled his eyes. “Come on! Look at that damage!!”

Brandon was torn between being happy that Ezekiel believed that his pooed stitches were an accident. And being annoyed with being spoken too as though he were just a little bit touched in the head. He decided to go with annoyed.

“Will you just shut up Shifter and give me something for the pain.” Brandon chuckled then hissed in agony. “I’m not moving until you give me either a pill or a very stiff drink.” Brandon told him and he meant it. He knew that there was no way he was getting a foot on the ground unless Ezekiel gave him something to manage the pain with.

“Hey no need to get grouchy.” Ezekiel said as he sighed and reached into his back pocket and pulled out a small white folded up paper. Inside the paper Brandon could just make out the chalky residue. I thought you might be needing some pain relief by today, after mom put in those stitches.”

“I guess no one can blame you for wanting a shower, but we did warn you not to wet your flesh, it makes it tinder, easy for tears to happen....” Ezekiel continued to talk as he walked across the room and flipped on the light in the bathroom.

His voice echoed softly off the tile as he spoke making Brandon’s pain calm as his mind focused on it. It was a warm voice, with a baritone that vibrated in Brandon’s chest and made Brandon listen even when he wanted to just tell the Sifter to shut up.

“Normally we don’t keep medicine around the house for pain, but my brother, Nate gets migraines so he keeps a pack of BC around just in case.”

Brandon listened to the Shifter turn on the water in the sink and fill up a cup with it. Then Ezekiel turned off the water and came out of the bathroom still carrying the white folded paper and the cup of water. Walking up to the side of the bed, he sat the cup down next to the medicine on the bedside table and cast Brandon a hesitant look.

“So....” He began steeping right up to the bed. “On a scale of one to ten, how much do you think movement will hurt you right now?”

“Eleven...” Brandon bit off as he tried to shift on the bed and a spike of fire crawled down his left leg.

“Well I guess this is gonna hurt....” He mumbled as he put his knee on the edge of the bed and leaned over until he had placed his hand next to Brandon’s head. Brandon wanted to be into much pain to notice the jump that his pulse did as the Shifter crowded him on the bed....but he noticed it anyway.

“I’m gonna have to bring you to the edge and sit you up so you can swallow the water. ” Ezekiel told him

“Why?” Brandon tried not to whine about it, but he was honestly not in the mood to be touched by anyone at that moment. No matter the reason. Ezekiel rolled his eyes and went to touch his arm. Brandon jerked to the side as best he could, letting him know that he wasn’t going for it. “Wait! Please, don’t touch me. I can take the medicine like this its fine....” He tried to explain.

“No.” Ezekiel denied. His blue eyes darting around Brandon’s face then connecting with his gaze. “Your pulse is all over the place....Your skins all sweaty and discolored, you’re sick. If I feed the medicine to you like this and you vomit...you’re going to choke on it....so let me sit you up.” He partially explained, but mostly seemed to demand.

Brandon cursed his fate....but he was nauseous and hot and barely able to think past the throbbing in his side, so rather than delay the delivery of the medicine any longer, he nodded.

Ezekiel sighed. “OK, well go easy....I’m going to help you sit up and move your legs.....” He said as he proceeded to put one of his long arms around Brandon’s shoulder, wrapping a hand around his upper arm the other arm under his thigs.

He shifted Brandon’s body to the edge of the bed, then began to let his legs and feet tilt over the edge as he started to pull Brandon upwards.

“Oww...” Brandon mumbled as his stomach tried to somersault and his side registered the strain of being furled up.

“Go slow...Deep breaths.” Ezekiel instructed him, he pulled Brandon closer, turning him so that his legs were now hanging off the bed.

“I got it...” Brandon tried to say in a strong voice, but only managed to whisper as a spike of shivers and warm blood began to run down his hip. He froze as his mind went fuzzy.....he didn’t want to move any further.

I can’t breathe....I can’t breathe....I...
He thought to himself. But Ezekiel cut into his internal monologue.

“Does it still hurt that bad?” Ezekiel mumbled into the sparse inches that remained between them. “Here...hold onto me.” Ezekiel took Brandon’s arm and lifted it over his shoulder and placing it behind his neck. Brandon didn’t want to be any closer to the Shifter then he needed to be, but he knew that the sooner he was sitting up the sooner Ezekiel would let him go.

Brandon wrapped his arms behind his head, and Ezekiels nearly came chest to chest with his as he wrapped his wrists behind his neck and pulled on him for support. The gloves around Brandon’s hands were just thin enough that he could sense the tips of his hair tinkling against them.

And he jumped when Ezekiels chin brushed against his collar, but with Ezekiels arm around his back to support him, he didn’t move much. He could only shiver when Ezekiels breath registered in the crook of his throat.

“Let me hold the weight...try to be still or you’re going to hurt yourself.” He said as he began to pull Brandon up wards slowly.

Against his will Brandon obeyed. Ezekiels voice taking his mind off the pain slightly as their cheeks brushed. And while he slowly pulled his to the edge and upwards the blue eyed Shifters proximity began to get to him....and not in the good way.

The Shifter tried to distract Brandon entirely. From Ezekiels heavy arm and hands holding him against his wider chest.

His breath on Brandon’s throat and the lingering smell of needles on his body. The warmth of his touch and his skin leaked through the leather gloves on his hands, and into the robes across his chest, beneath which he was mostly unclothed.

For a second....an image tried to come over him, aflutter of awareness crawled up his spine. He was taken back to the moments after he had woken up, the moment that Ezekiel had pinned him against the bedroom wall. The feeling of Brandon’s body trapped against his. It fed a moment of insanity.

Where instead of holding Ezekiels neck for support Brandon began to imagine that he saw himself slipping his hands up into the Shifters long hair. That the Shifter moaned as his fingers flexed in his scalp. He turned his head and pulled Ezekiel closer. Their lips met silken heat exploded on his senses as the Leopard suckled on his...

Brandon felt accosted by the thoughts. He couldn’t push it way.

Brandon closed his eyes and mentally shouted the thoughts away. And when he opened his eyes the vison was gone. But the ghost feelings of heat on his skin, and wish of a kiss remained on his lips.

Shit...I must be going crazy....

He thought, feeling terribly uncomfortable and suddenly wanting nothing more than to push the Shifter away from him.

Then all he felt was pain as Ezekiels hissed against his skin, his breath and lips brushing the space between Brandon’s neck and shoulder. Shocking his skin as the feeling and sound raised goose bumps along Brandon’s arms, but before he could register much of anything, Ezekiel snatched away from him and Brandon slammed into the carpet beside the bed and a wave of fire cut across his sides. It stole every thought out of his head. Especially any favorable thoughts he might have had for the Shifter in that moment.

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