Chapter 75 - Undeserving
Against Ezekiel’s will, the Leopard inside urged him to follow Brandon.
Ezekiel simply clocked his exit instead, watching until Brandon had completely disappeared from sight, leaving behind the overpowering scent of his alluring blood on the air.
Mantilo easily ignored his abrupt exit and as everyone turned back to discussing the information that their Father had returned with....Ezekiel found his mind lingering, as it often did, on the meaning behind what Brandon had uttered moments ago.
You and those ugly beasts don’t scare me....
Is what he had said to Mantilo, but that snide remark uttered in passing seemed deeper to Ezekiel. It had Ezekiel pondering silently.
So what the hell IS he afraid of? What is Brandon’s story?
Ezekiel asked himself.
And for some unknown reason the idea of the answer to that question unsettled Ezekiel even more. And he wondered why someone he thought about this much...was still little more than a stranger to him.
Brandon didn’t know when sleep claimed him that night, but it came after many useless hours of fretting, thinking and even worrying.
Worrying that one of the Shifter wouldn’t return after going out after the Ghouls. To hunt them....to kill them.
But eventually exhaustion claimed him and in his sleep he found little peace.
One moment he was staring at his leather covered hands that were balled up on his pillow in front of him and the next he blinked as he felt the open air.
The sun sat like a strobe light in the open blue heavens and he stood, floating over a conflict beneath him. A beautiful Rosen color kissed the sun and for as long as he could Brandon wanted to focus on that. He wanted to look at the majestic and Unknown Mountain tops peeking out of the fog all around. This dream could so easily have been a happy experience, instead of the intense and endless nightmare that had plugged him all of his nights.
Brandon eventually looked down as the two strangers beneath him began to shout at each other and he saw himself. He saw a man that was him. Dirty blond hair, green eyes...but here the similarities ended. He spoke strange, he was grabbed in silks, and he was covered in blood and in his hand....he held a sword also dripping in blood. The stranger, this dreamlike version of Brandon was speaking to another man. Kail. They were having some dramatic confrontation as they always did in every dream.
Kail, with his familiar face screamed back. It made no sense for Brandon to recognize him, he didn’t know either of the men that he saw in the dream personally. Brandon didn’t understand why they fought. He didn’t know why one of the strangers looked like him. It was a nightmare full of sadness, and agony and it never stopped and yet it all felt so real. Brandon’s heart hurt as Kail rose his blade, his eyes stung as a sharp yellow flash of sunlight glanced off the blades length.
“No.” Kail smiled over at Brandon’s twin sadly as he always did in the dream, as though his heart was breaking. Kail raised the blade before him, strawberry light glancing off the silvery blade in his hands once more.
“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. He couldn’t see, he couldn’t hear, but God he could feel. His heart was falling apart! His bones were separating, he was without sensation, and yet flayed alive by it.
He screamed, but he didn’t awaken.
Tonight it was too much, too strong. Too heart breaking. He felt like he was going to snap. And he didn’t even know why.
He had to have something else, besides the pain and agony. Something.
“Brandon.” A familiar voice called to him, pulling him out of the pain.
That baritone was instantly recognizable though he had only known it for a few weeks. The touch was familiar though he had only felt it briefly. Brandon blinked and suddenly he was in his room, on his bed....and naked. He felt the warm air on every inch of his skin, but he also felt the body of another pressed against him.
Warm, and hard, and completely unclothed. Brandon gasped as a gentle, hand caressed his hips, then slipped down and softly took his cock and teased it, playing the velvety flesh up and down, so that pleasure began to tighten in his loins. Lightening danced over his senses making him moan and touch himself.
“Brandon...” the familiar voice, Ezekiels voice, whispered like silk, begging, demanding, inside of his head, stroking Brandon’s soul as the dream took him deeper. The hard body lying on top of him shifted and moved with Brandon on the sheets, hot skin and breathy cries and moans, ignited passions that seemed all too real, until Brandon didn’t know where Ezekiel ended and he began.
Brandon hips moved in a fevered rhythm and teeth grazed his throat before the glide of something hot and wet could be felt tracing his pulse, then his collar, and finally his nipples. Brandon cried out and pulled at the covers. The wet moisture and the suckle of lips followed, as well as the rasp of teeth and fangs on his hard tip. Each lick and suckle...and bite more intense, lasting longer....until Brandon came undone beneath his phantom lover, squirming and breathless.
With a shutter of shock Brandon woke up and curled into a small miserable ball. His cock tingled and gushed damp under his clothes. His chest tight and his skin flushed.
“Ezekiel...” He whispered to himself. Not a call, just an acknowledgement of what he had seen...what he had felt. He felt insane for his thought’s, but for no reason that he wanted to admit he held his chest and tried not to fall apart as the unwanted passion, the unforgettable terror and the sickening fear mixed inside, with no way out. The nightmare and the pleasure became one.
The questions built inside, but there were no answers to be found inside of his raging body.
What am I?
He asked himself, but the answer was always.
I don’t know.
A dozen other questions all came to the same point.
Who was Kail?
He didn’t know.
Where am I going?
He didn’t know.
Why do I dream about Ezekiel?
He didn’t know.
But somehow he felt the eyes out beyond his room. The claw’s at his throat. THEY were out there...and their masters wouldn’t be too far behind. And the one thing he did know....was that he was never going to find the answers.
He didn’t deserve the answers. He deserved this pain alone.
BOOK 1 PART ONE – THE MEETING (END)
Thank you to everyone that has given me their support and encouragement until now.
There will now be a PART TWO.
Now, please enjoy this story as it unravels more and...If anyone has any suggestions...or questions feel free to ask them in the comments. I will respond as long as it’s not spoiler Q’s.
VOCAB TO REMEMBER IN THE FUTURE-
CLANS- The seven districts that Shifters have made homes inside of, they reside in different areas all over the world. There are at least Six Clans and each Clan has a different society and environment.
CLAN LANDS- The intricate and often densely populated lands and homes that Shifters reside in.
CLAN HEAD- The elected or often appointed Shifter who is in control of their Clans safety, wellbeing and continued prosperity.
CLAN HEIR – The direct son or daughter to the Clan Head...or simply the strongest and most worthy of the next generation to lead a Clan forward.
DRAGON CLAN- Gods of Sky and Earth. The ancient rulers of Shifters. Many legends and texts tell that they are the sole creators of the continued peace between men and beasts.
GHOULS- Mysterious ravenous beasts long thought exterminated.
HEALER – A leopard or Leopardess equivalent of a mortal Doctor.
INNATE ABLITIES- Some Shifters have been known to acquire special abilities called Innate Abilities that are often supernatural in nature and also correspond to the beast that they are able to change into. Not much is known or even questioned about these abilities. They are often seen as nothing more than tools and most times they are used in determining if a Male or Female Shifter is going to become the next Clan Head.
MATES- Two Shifters who are compatible beyond the normal realms of love and often connect spiritually. Their bodies and energy’s match so closely that there is a reaction inside of them that compels them to enter into a contract or a sealed marriage called MATING. Once both parties have accepted this contract, for unknown and mysterious reasons, markings will appear on both of the Mates bodies called Mating Marks.
MATING MARKS- Intricate bands made from the darkened raising of freckles on the Skin after two Shifters have become Mates. The Marks often appear around the right and left wrist, or the left and right ankle. It is believed to symbolize a shackle or a sealed contract between the two Mates. And it is also believed that a supernatural reaction between the two lovers causes the freckles to appear.
SHIFTERS- Beings that live opposite mortals in this fantastical world that change or “Shift” into their animal counterparts in times of dire need or in extreme and emotional situations. Most Shifters reside in their homelands called Clan Lands which they share with others of their kind and Shift called Clans Men. There are a total of Six Shifter Clans that reside throughout the planet each supporting the various other species of Shifters from Bird to Dog.
SHIFTER SOCIETY- Made up of various pillars that mirror Mortal society, Shifters operate with Laws and a Hierarchy that dually controls how a Clan functions ranging from the Sacred Laws, to Guardians (Cops), and finally to a Clan Head (King/ President). The Society in each Shifter Clan is believed to be different from Dog to Leopard to Bird, but in all society’s it is known that a Shifter doesn’t become one with their inner beast or Shifter until the age of puberty. After which time a Shifter experiences a decelerated growth rate and an increase in animalistic senses that correspond to the beast that they are now sharing a soul and body with.
SACRED LAWS – Sacred words written in what some believe to be, the magic of the Dragons and the blood of the Ancient Kings men. A set of unforgotten rules created as an olive branch between Men and Shifters.
THE GREAT LOSS – A mysterious event in Shifter history that brought about the creation of the Sacred Laws and preceded the peace between all men and Shifters. Not much is known about this event and there is even less recorded about it in history.
BRANDON- Confused young man with a past strewn with darkness and secrecy. Possessed of a power that he loathes, hides and struggles to control. Currently being hunted by Ghouls and by nightmares of a man named Kail. Has a body littered with old wounds and scars. Sarcastic, cunning, intelligent and often described as stubborn. (Described as immensely attractive or beauteous, lean with medium length dirty blond hair, cool mint green eyes and possibly in his 20′s.)
EZEKIEL- Powerful and confident Shifter with a responsibility to his Clan and his father to protect and serve his Clans Men. A Guardian. But also a Reaver. A Shifter with wild blood, often destined to slip into insanity. A caring individual, with a passion for animal care, and protecting his family at any cost. Youngest of three brothers with two cousins and both of his parents. Strong willed, overly curious, mischievous and often described as bossy. (Moderately long dark blond hair, sharp blue eyes, well built, handsome and 23 years old.)
NATE- Seemingly carefree and playful Shifter with a responsibility to his Clan and his father to protect and serve his Clans Men. A Guardian. Unlike the rest of the characters in the story so far he is the only other Shifter that is not a Leopard. Instead Nate is Wolf adopted based off of unknown circumstances. A good hearted Shifter, with a flippant nature and a supernatural ability to bind the limbs of others with his mind. (Two different colored eyes (Left is white with black pupil, the right eyes is black with a white rim, Tall, slim, WITH eyebrow piercings, a scar over his left eye and ? years old)
LANDER- An aggressive, cocky and territorial Shifter with a responsibility to his Clan and his father to protect and serve his Clans Men. A Guardian. Third oldest of the Brothers. Described as Homophobic with a penchant for sneering, mean spirited jokes and a dangerous temper. A leopard with very little love or care for those outside of his family and a fierce protector of his home. A no nonsense individual, with a hard personality and the supernatural ability to invade the thoughts of others. (Tall, average build, handsome, dark green angry eyes, and sharp blond hair, ? years old)
WALTER- An unfeeling, fiercely protective and unnervingly cool Shifter with a responsibility to his Clan and his father to protect and serve his Clans Men. A Guardian. The oldest of the Brothers. A leopard described as Blank or empty, who seems incapable of expressing emotions. Possessing the ability to supernaturally control others completely and utterly. Will one day take over his Clan since he is the Clan Head’s Heir (A head of black hair cropped close to his head, large, tall, yellow eyes, handsome, ? years old)
GLEN – A loving and brave Leopardess. A Healer. Mate to Mantilo. Mother of Ezekiel, Walter and Lander. Adoptive mother to Nate. Aunt to Erin and Drin. (A head full of sandy curls, big green eyes, described as small or delicate, ? years old)
MANTILO- A stern, if dedicated Leopard. Clan Head to the Leopard Clan who is immensely territorial, and merciless in the face of a threat to him or his family. Father of Ezekiel and his siblings. Uncle to Erin and Drin. Leader and organizer of the Guardian’s. Described as a large individual, with a dominance and raw power that is mostly unrivaled and generally plotted towards keeping his home safe. (Long black braided hair, Yellow eyes, and large, tall 200 years old)
ERIN- Ezekiels and his Brother’s cousin. A budding Healer. A budding Guardian. A leopardess in the Leopard Clan, Mated to DRIN and currently a History Scholar and a new mother. (Hazel eyes, short hair, 17 years old, tall)
DRIN- A Leopard. Mate to Erin. Cousin-in- Law to Ezekiel and his brother. An expecting father. And a budding Guardian. (Black hair cut close, blue eyes, short, 18 years old)
KAIL- A mysterious figure from Brandon’s nightmares. His purpose and identity remain a mystery.
PART TWO-THE CLAN CELEBRATION COMMING SOON!
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