Steel and Spell

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Chapter 7

In some moment of the evening, I fell asleep and I didn’t wake up until the next day. I woke up slowly and opened my eyes. The cabin was dark and through the window, I could see the forest and the daylight starting slowly appearing, giving the forest a dreamy look. I turned around to see Cassius in his bed with his back to me, his controlled breaths moving his back in synchronized movements. It was too early, but I felt more alive than ever. I started moving to sit when I realized I could move my leg.

I sighed in contentment that I could finally move my leg and that after two days of non-stop craziness, I was finally rested and with renewed energy. I sat against the wall to have a better look at my leg and a loud gasp escaped my lips. Every bruise, scratch and every wound I had, was gone. I took the bandage away from my right thigh quickly and my jaw literally hit the floor. The wound was gone, not even leaving a single scar. I blinked once, then twice, ten times, but it was gone. I looked at my arms and started moving my shoulders to feel any pain, but I felt none. I stood up in one jump and moved my legs, which proved they were completely healthy. My mouth was still gaping like a fish out of the water.

“This is insane. I’m probably asleep and dreaming.” I thought. I pinched my arm hard and when the pain was too much I released it. I looked at Cassius, who was still fast asleep. I walked outside in silence to not make more noise than the one I had already made. The morning breeze made me shiver, but I ignored it.

“When he wakes up he will going to answer some serious questions” I muttered under my breath. My arms were over my chest while my hands were trying to give them warmth. I looked over to the forest and the trees were still, as if they were frozen, although there was a thin breeze. Not a single sound could be heard. Not even the leaves brushing each other. Suddenly I felt that I was being watched. My breath was caught in my chest and I feared to move. I looked at the trees, at the sky, at my sides, but nothing. With all my mental strength I took off the overwhelming feeling and breathed deeply. I looked inside the cabin to check if Cassius was still sleeping. He hadn’t moved an inch so I thought he was probably asleep. I walked further from the cabin where the opening ended and the forest started. Like it never happened, the forest was back to life, the birds were chirping and a few rays of sun warmed my skin. The feeling I was being watched was long gone thankfully. I sat on the edge of the forest with my back against the tree still alert for anything. Nothing happened so I let myself relax and close my eyes.

The thoughts from the previous day when I was eating came back in a swirl to my mind and I started to question everything that had happened the last 2 days. Trying to find answers to my supposed time travel was the hardest. Was it even possible? The thought of it took my mind instantly to those science fiction movies and books where there is a machine that does it. Even the TARDIS was a machine that had kind of a reasonable reason. A machine was out of the question instantly.

“Superpowers?” a part of my brain questioned. That was even more impossible. The thought of me having superpowers and being like a superhero made me snort internally. Plus, I didn’t remember being exposed to radiation or anything that could have given me powers. Or at least that’s how you get them in movies and comics. And still, the option of still being in the 21st century was open. There were so many options but none of them were coherent. Finally, I got to a conclusion. I was going to wait and stay with Cassius waiting for a sign or something that will show me where was I and what the hell was going on. I felt shuffling next to me and when I open my eyes he was there watching me.

“You have been there for at least an hour.” he said with his eyebrows up in questioning.

I shrugged. “I thought you were asleep.”

“I don’t sleep.” He said in a blank tone.

His hair looked messy which made me question his previous statement. How he looked so handsome that early in the morning is a mystery. His hazel eyes were watching me carefully, and he had a blank face that didn’t let any emotion show. How he looked handsome with every expression he made and all the freaking time it was a mystery.

I rolled my eyes internally at his attempt to show himself tough, but didn’t say anything.

I stood up and before he could walk away I grabbed his arm.

“You have serious explaining to do.”

“It is just a potion. Not too complicated.” he rolled his eyes guessing what was disturbing me. He probably heard me gasp and move like crazy inside the cabin when he was supposedly sleeping.

“Just a potion? Are you kidding me? This is alien!” I said moving my arms in emphasis.

He rolled his eyes again.“You are from the future. There must be better potions.”

I shook my head. “We don’t even have potions. Pills are probably the closest thing.”

He just shrugged and walked away. “Don’t care.”

My eyebrows rose in surprise at the sudden rudeness.

“Not a morning person...”

“What crawled up your ass today? Jesus...” I said before I could shut my mouth.

He turned around and looked at me. “Who’s Jesus?”

I stared at him blankly and then started laughing.

“You are kidding me right?” I said between my laughs. My laughs stopped when I looked at his face.

“Uhm, the guy that supposedly saved everyone and was crucified?” I tried to explain in the best way possible. He didn’t say anything and looked at me for a more developed answer.

“The son of God, he resurrected from the dead...” I kept trying to explain with no success at all.

“Virgin Mary? God?” I said trying to at least get a reaction or something from him.

He shook his head before going inside the cabin.

I was taken aback and just stared at the door where he went through.

“He has to be kidding me. Wasn’t at this time where the Catholic church was like super powerful and everything? They even burned witches...” I thought in my head still trying to process the fact that he didn’t know about the Catholic religion. My family was very Catholic, so I knew a lot of the Catholic church and its history, including the bad things.

During medieval times, the church killed thousands of women of who they considered “witches”. Any strange behavior that was “out of the normal”, which it could have been a simple action like speaking your mind, and they burned you. Alive.

I sighed and passed a hand through my hair. “This doesn’t make sense...” I muttered. I started walking towards the cabin and just when I was about to enter, Cassius passed beside me, roughly bumping my shoulder in the process.

When I looked behind me, he had his cape over him and his sword by his side.

“Where are you going?” I called from behind. He didn’t say anything and kept walking.

Frustration and annoyance took over me. I ran to catch up with him and just before he entered the woods I grabbed his arm.

“Hey! I made you a question!” I said angrily. He turned to look at me, and he looked equally or more angry than me.

He didn’t say anything and I sighed. I passed a hand through my hair in frustration for this attitude of him and waved a hand nonchalantly.

“You know what? Do what you want. You’re fucking pissed one minute and the next you look like nothing happened.”

His glare was murderous, but I kept talking.

“So go and do whatever you want to do, and please try to keep your shit together.” I said this in between gritted teeth.

I made an attempt to turn around, but his hand grabbed my wrist and turned me around forcefully.

“Do not play the victim.” he said with an accusing finger. “You try to make me feel like a fool just because you are from the future.”

He took a step forward, his nose almost touching mine. You could feel his rage just by looking at his eyes. I didn’t take my eyes off and kept my ground. I wasn’t going to show off I was intimidated by him.

“And something I hate is being treated like a fool.” He said in a harsh whisper that made me shiver.

“What are you talking about?” I said completely clueless. But then it hit me.

“Is it because I laughed? Are you serious?” He didn’t say anything but took a step back making some space between us.

“I’m so sorry. I really didn’t mean it to make you feel...bad. I really thought you knew.” I said it with true sincerity. But it was not enough.

He just turned around and without another word, he disappeared into the woods.

I let a frustrated groan and headed back to the cabin. The only thing that I could do to solve it was to wait until he came back. I started to tidy up my improvised bead and let out a chuckle remembering my mom always had to shout at me to make my bed. Sadness flood over me instantly at the memory of my mom. My sister and my best friend came to mind again after my mom and even Lucas appeared. I couldn’t avoid thinking of them. My only thoughts were them, or how the hell did I get there.

“Were they worried? Did they even know I was missing? Did they think I left them? In what time of the present would I return?” All these questions flooded my mind and my eyes watered at the idea of my family thinking I’m dead. I just hoped that when I returned everything was going to return to normal. I looked at the whole cabin looking for something to occupy myself. Since the whole cabin was a mess I decided to tidy up everything. It wasn’t much but it kept me busy at least an hour. When I finished my stomach started to protest for food. Cassius still hadn’t returned, but since I’m such an independent woman I went outside looking for food. Thankfully, there was a berry bush near the cabin just at the beginning of the forest. I ate a whole bunch, but my stomach felt the same.

“Maybe is the fact that since you appeared here you haven’t eaten nothing else than berries.” My mind concluded. And with that, my mind thought of the only place I could think of. The river with the pond. My feet started moving in the direction of the river without hesitation. The walk wasn’t long and I had memorized the path the day before. When I got to the river I started thinking of my fishing plan. I grabbed a sharp rock and a tree branch. With the sharp rock, I started smoothing the surface and sharpening the end. It took me at least an hour to do it.

“Thank god for that whole month of Boy Scouts when I was twelve.” I thought with a chuckle.

When I finished I was about to get into the water when I remembered my gigantic clothing I was wearing. No matter how many times I folded the ends of the shirt and pants, they were too big. A thought crossed my mind that made me stop what I was doing. I looked at my left, then to my right and behind me.

“Fuck it.”

I stripped my clothes off and was left with only my underwear. The only thought of someone looking at me in that moment made my cheeks burn in embarrassment. With that I grabbed my new spear and started walking towards the river. The water started rising and I decided to go to the deepest part of the river, where the water got to my hips. The current was smooth, so I wasn’t preoccupied of being carried by it. I remained still and focused on the water. Not much longer, a fish appeared, swimming carelessly. Just when it was at my reach I threw the spear with all my strength in the direction of the fish. Of course, this wasn’t a movie and the thing was not even close to hitting the fish. I tried another time, and another, and another. When it was like the tenth time trying, I was about to throw the spear, when my foot slipped on a rock and with a loud yelp I fell, getting me drench. I stood up with a frustrated groan and took all the wet hair off my face. This was the most difficult thing I had ever done in my WHOLE LIFE.

“I’m not giving up. Hell no.” I thought with determination.

I stood up still and when I saw a fish I let it get close to me and before I could even process it, I throw the spear with so much force it got stuck in between the rocks at the bottom. I groaned in annoyance and bend over to take the spear. When it was free I was surprised to see that the fish was pierced through the spear looking lifeless. I fist bumped the air with my free arm and started dancing in happiness.

I started humming “Happy” of Pharrell Williams meanwhile I walked to get out of the river but something felt odd. The air felt suddenly very cold and no sound could be heard. Everything was frozen, not making a single move. Not even the river the swift current could be heard. I wasn’t even feeling the current with my legs. My mind went instantly to that moment in the morning were the exact same thing happened.

My body tensed and was in attack mode immediately. My heart was beating a thousand miles per hour and my eyes looked over everything I could see. In the corner of my eye, I saw something moving in between the trees. My head snapped in the direction of the movement and I was sure all the color in my face drained. A huge shadow stood in between the trees. I felt the sudden urge to run and never look back, but I stood my ground, paralyzed all of a sudden. In a blink of an eye, the shadow disappeared and everything went to normal. I could feel the cold current in between my legs, the trees were moving in graze with the warm wind and the sound of animals could be heard all around me.

I released a shaky breath and didn’t move for at least two minutes. “It was the same thing that watched me in the morning.” I thought slightly panicking at the idea of something haunting me down.

I forced myself to get out of the river and as fast as I could I put my clothes on and hurried through the forest to the cabin. Just when I got to the clear where the cabin was, my gaze caught Cassius still with his cape on and with something slung over his shoulder, also stepping out of the forest at the same time as me. His stare was on me and he looked slightly surprised for a second before annoyance was replaced and started walking towards me. I prepared my mind for again another fight with him and started walking towards him with the spear in my right hand. When I was close enough I saw what he was carrying was a medium size deer. The cabin was in the middle of the clearance and we met just in front of the door of the cabin.

I rested the spear in the wall and crossed my arms in front of my chest. He put the deer on the floor and mimicked my action.

“Never do that again. Heard me?” he said with a harsh tone that almost made me flinch.

I shrugged casually. “Sorry, but you can’t tell me what to do. I’m not staying in the cabin and clean everything for you like a housewife waiting for his husband.”

“Husband?” he said with his eyebrows up and a cocky smirk suddenly taking over his handsome features.

“What the hell with those mood swings?” I thought

“Ye-” I looked at him and shook my head. “You’re getting off topic! What I mean is that I’m not going to sit around all day and wait for you to bring food, water or anything. If I can do it, I will do it myself.”

His pissed mood went back instantly and he glared at me. “You really want to die.”

“Is called surviving, not dying.”

He didn’t say anything so I took the chance to keep talking. “My answer is and will be the same. I don’t care what kind of messed up things you think I’m going to confront or what horrible deaths wait for me. Because that kind of fear is not helpful at all. The only thing they will do is keep me confined and fearful of everything and that’s the kind of attitude that leads me nowhere.” My mind went directly to what happened in the river with the strange shadow. A part of my conscious said I should tell him, but then that would ruin my whole speech of being independent.

I took the spear of the wall and turned around. “Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a fish to clean.”

Before I could move his voice interrupted. “The cleaning area is the other way.”

“There’s a cleaning area?” I turned around to look at him. In response, he grabbed the deer by its legs and started walking towards the back of the cabin. I trailed behind him and discovered an enormous table, with empty buckets under it.

“Let’s clean the deer first, shall we?”

He took huge knifes from under the table and held one to me. I looked at him suspiciously but gave in a took the knife. We spent an hour and a half cleaning the damn deer and I discovered that the empty buckets were for the blood. There was so much blood everywhere and organs that I almost threw up. And by the time we finished, I was almost fainting because of hunger. Another hour passed until we ate the deer, which it didn’t taste bad at all. Let’s just say it was good enough for me to not be hungry anymore. I don’t want to give Cassius to much credit about it. And my fish was left forgotten on the table. So basically all the effort was for nothing.

But more importantly, I needed to talk to him about what happened in the morning.

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