A Howl of Prayer
A Howl of prayer
Pain…There was so much pain. It was the only thing Kuekuatsu could remember, the only thing he could think of. Until he heard something, or better yet, someone; someone whose voice sounded like a muffled echo at first, but soon it began to clear.
“….kuatsu! Kuekuatsu! You need to wake up! Stay with me son! Stay with me!” The deep and commanding voice of his father resonated with him.
Kuekuatsu coughed, and his body shuddered in reply. His breathing pattern was panicked at first, but it took only a moment for it to stabilize.
“My son…are you alright? Can you hear me?” Axel gently raised his sons head in his arm, and held him close.
Kuekuatsu’s eyes opened slowly, and as he stared into his father’s face, he began to focus on the blood that stained his white fur. “Dad….what…happened? The young wolf whispered to his father.
“Don’t worry son, it’s over now.” Axel replied after taking a great sigh of relief.
At that moment, Kuekuatsu recalled his last memory, and his breathing suddenly became heavier.
“Zet--Zetrov! Wh--Where is he?!” Kuekuatsu’s hand, which trembled with pain, reached up to grab his father’s shoulder.
Axel looked over his left shoulder, and for a moment he glared at something he despised with great malice, and then his eyes panned back to his injured son, saying. “There’s no need to be concern about him anymore.”
Kuekuatsu looked into his father’s deep brown eyes, confused about what he meant. However, it soon became clear, and he understood what had transpired while he was unconscious.
With his father's help, kuekuatsu stood on his feet, but leaned on his father's shoulder for support.
"Dad...." he panted. ”Who the hell is he?" Kuekuatsu grabbed his father by the shoulders and looked him in the eyes as he spoke.
"He said he knew you!" The black wolf growled "and then...and then he said things about me...about what happened to Luna crest!"
"He’s a liar!" Axel roared, and then paused for a moment to calm himself. "But yes...I did know him. We once fought together...side by side....but that is all." said the white wolf as he watched his son step back.
The scent of blood caught the young wolf's attention as his nostrils flared. Kuekuatsu motioned toward his father's side and gazed upon the mangled corpse of the Grey werewolf, whose blood was still fresh as it soaked its way into the dirt.
Axel turned, and stood alongside his son.
"Trust me son, whatever that filth said was merely a ploy to get your guard down"
The black wolf grit his fangs and said. “I know…but I can’t…I can’t stop thinking about it!”
"He said that I killed thousands of our kin on the day I was born!" Kuekuatsu barked at his father.
Axel briefly clenched his fists before replying “Are you saying that you believe him? Don’t be a fool!”
“Of course I don’t believe him, but this isn’t something I can just shrug off!” Kuekuatsu continued. “Even if it was all just to get my guard down, he could have taunted me with insults towards you, but instead he accuses me of being a mass murderer!” Kuekuatsu growled as he then gestured toward his fallen enemy.
"When he had me pinned down, that bastard even gloated about how the elders of Luna crest would revere him as a hero for bringing them my head…." He snarled with a fixed glare on the grey wolf.
"My son…. I can assure you that the elders would never want that" Axels furry ears folded back, as his face wore a shade of sadness.
"But how do you know that Dad?" Kuekuatsu quickly turned to face his father, with his body still bloody and scarred from his previous battle.
"Because you’re just a child!" Axel barked at his son. “The elders would never be so cruel that they would execute someone so young!” Axel briefly glared at Zetrovs corpse once more, and under his breath he cursed him for the trouble he had wrought.
There was a moment of silence between the two wolves. Kuekuatsu looked away from his father as he winced in pain, hugging the left side of his torso with his right hand, he could feel his body slowly repair itself from the punishment Zetrov gave him.
“Dad…” Kukeuatsu started, turning to face him once more. “Why can’t we go back to Luna Crest?”
“You already know the answer to that.” Axel calmly replied.
“It’s been over a decade since we left, and you and mom have never even tried to find out if the situation over there had changed.”
“It wouldn’t matter if it did change.” Axel growled, and then his head tilted down. “Luna Crest is no longer our home.” He said firmly.
"But the war could be over, it has to be!” Kuekuatsu replied “We could help re—“
THAT’S ENOUGH!” Axel roared. “Everything that filthy whelp said was a lie!” He pointed to the grey wolf.
“Your mother and I turned our backs on Luna Crest to protect you! So everyone there and that bastard king Merkatsu can rot in the deepest pit of the ninth realm for all I care!”
Startled by his father’s sudden rage, the black wolf took a step back.
“Merkatsu? So Luna Crest does have a king…” Kuekuatsu thought to himself. “But I thought finding a new king was the whole point of the war…” The young wolf opened his mouth to say something, but then stopped himself. “No…if I ask any more questions he’ll just shut me out….”
“Coventos is our home now, so do not concern yourself with Luna Crest anymore. Do you understand?” The white wolf waited for his sons reply.
Kuekuatsu paused to contemplate, and then gave his answer. “Yes, Father.”
“Good, now let’s go home.” Axel turned and began to walk on four legs. “When we get there you should focus on getting something to eat, it will help your body heal, and I’ll explain everything to your mother.”
"I’m sorry Dad, but I can’t go home...not yet." The black wolf stood his ground.
"What? Why?" Axel turned around to face his son.
"There's a lot more going on than I realized. It actually wasn't a coincidence that I met Zetrov today."
"What are you talking about?"
"Last night, I had a dream about Zetrov attacking a human girl, and I tried to save her but was too late. And just a few hours ago when I went out to get the kazcusa berries, I sensed Zetrov and that same human girl, but this time I was able to stop him."
“That sounds a lot like a premonition, but how is that possible?” Axel asked, “And where is this human girl you saved?”
"There is a school nearby called Alcaster Academy, that’s where she is right now, and her name is Scarlet BlazeRune.” Kuekuatsu pointed north, indicating the schools location. “As for the premonition, Scarlet has deduced that it was the result of a forbidden spell called Dream Spark, which was used on me in order for the two of us to meet today.
“Someone has orchestrated all this? But why?” Axel inquired while sitting down, still in his quadruped form.
“That’s what I want to find out, and why I can’t go home until I do.” His son replied.
“But your mother is already worried. I promised her I would bring you back.” Axels furry ears folded back as he sighed.
“And I will come back Dad, but not until I figure this out.” Kuekuatsu held a gaze with his father and went on to say. “Please Dad, this is important.”
“I’m not leaving you alone.”
“Fine, then you can come with me. I’ll even introduce you to Scarlet, I think you’ll like her, she saved my life, and can handle herself in a fight.” Kuekuatsu said as he turned around and motioned toward Zetrov’s corpse.
“What are you doing?” Axel followed.
“It’s what Mom always does after she kills her prey.” The black wolf clasp his hands together as he kneeled. “Give respect to the dead, and offer them peace.” Kuekuatsu then leaned his head back and howled.
“Zetrov does not deserve peace…” Axel snarled in disgust as he uttered the name.
“Maybe not” Kuekuatsu agreed. “But he’s dead now, and my quarrel with him is over.”
“As is mine…” Axel sat next to his son. “May the great mother Tsukiyomi, have mercy on his soul.”
“Anma Tulis Moruun” Both Father and Son spoke in their native tongue, and together they howled.
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