Crown Of Storms

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- Chapter 2 | Lie To Survive

A N D R O N I K A


I’VE FELT PAIN BEFORE, but nothing ever like this.

The scars on my body are proof of the pain I’ve had to endure over the years of being a hunter, but no amount of pain I’ve ever felt could even be close to what I feel right now.

My mom rushes to my side and tries to soothe me, but she can’t. I don’t want to hurt her so she really needs to get away from me.

I want to tell her to stay away but the pain is holding me back from talking, I can’t do anything except feel each bone in my body breaking.

“Shhh. It’s okay my dear. I know it hurts, but you must try to be quiet...” She want’s me to be quiet? She does not know the pain I am going through!

The bones in my face are beginning to change and in a voice I can’t believe came from me, I roar, “Get back!”

Jumping back in fear, my mom looks terrified and I wish I could help her, but I’m not in control right now.

Cautiously, while watching me, she walks to the window and looks outside. Whatever she saw must be bad because her head snapped towards me in panic.

“They’re coming...” She says and that’s all I needed to know what was happening.

My screams woke everyone up and now they’re coming. The hunters are coming and I’m going to die.

The pain wouldn’t stop, but my senses became extremely heightened. All the hunters were so far away from our house, but I could hear them coming, the crunch of leaves under their heavy footsteps.

Whispers of how a wolf found our territory were among them all, but they’re definitely going to be surprised to see that no wolf found them... Just that someone they trusted has become one.

“Rayoon & Nika are in trouble, we must help them.”

“There’s a wolf by Rayoon’s house! We need to get there now!”

“It must be an alpha from the way it sounds.”

They were getting closer, I could hear them talking so loudly it was as if they were standing right next to me.

The hunters think my mom and I are in trouble, so it is best if they continue to think that. They can do whatever they want to me, but I will not allow them to hurt my mother.

Using as much strength as I could muster, I push the pain as far as I can inside of me so that I can speak.

“Mom...” I croak, my voice coming out rough and strained.

“Yes, yes. I’m here.” She tries coming towards me but I shake my head as a growl slips from my lips.

“Go to them... Tell them that you... Didn’t know what was happening... Lie to survive.” It was such a struggle for me to say as little as I did, but I needed her to listen to me.

Shaking her head, tears begin falling from her eyes as she says, “No, Andronika...”

Before she can say anymore, a terrifying growl rips through my throat as that unknown voice inside me speaks again, “Go!”

And that she did. She ran out of the room and I used my heightened senses to listen and make sure she’s safe.

The horrific pain is starting to come back and I don’t know how much longer I can hold it in.

The urge to finish the change is so strong, but theres too much of an internal battle between the hunter in me and the wolf.

The hunters are getting closer and I can hear my mom running towards them. Closing my eyes, I take a deep breath and get ready to open them again when a vision happens.

I feel out of place, I don’t know what’s happening. My breaths seem labored and I can feel myself running. Looking around, I see I’m in the woods when all of a sudden the hunters come into view.

What am I doing? If they see me in the middle of my change, they’re going to kill me.

I try to run turn around, but I can’t. It’s like I’m not in control of my body at all and I don’t know what to do.

“Look, over there!” I hear someone yell from up ahead, but I can’t tell who it was from due to the mass of people.

“Rayoon! Are you okay?” Someone frantically asks as we all come to a stop.

Did they just say my mom’s name? Before I can think of any other questions I begin talking, or should I say my mom begins talking.

I don’t know how, but I can see through her eyes and feel what she’s feeling. It’s so strange... I know that this isn’t something normal wolves can do, so why can I?

“I don’t know what happened... It was so sudden. Please you must help me!” I hear my mom say in a rush as a few hunters try to calm her down.

“Don’t worry, we will kill the wolf. Where is Andronika? Is she okay?” Asks the leader of this base.

“No... no, don’t hurt her.” Mom says shaking her head and I can feel how worried and terrified she is for me right in this moment.

“Her? You better not be talking about that wolf. Anyone who is friends with the wolves are our enemy, you should know that better than anyone.” He snarls and a low growl rips through my throat.

Luckily I can’t do anything but watch or else his head would be torn to pieces.

“Andronika.” Mom says pleadingly to him and I see confusion all over his face?

“Why would I hurt my own granddaughter?” He asks and I can tell that it pains my mom to tell him, he is her father after all.

“She’s changing. Andronika is the wolf.” Thats all she says before it became so quiet that you could hear a penny drop as his head snaps up towards the house.

That’s all I saw before my eyes opened and all of the pain I’ve been holding back hits me at full force.

Something like a scream mixed with a painful howl of a wolf came from my throat as I collapsed completely onto the floor in agony.

I’ve heard stories about a wolves first shift. The base leaders taught me and the rest of the trainees how to tell if a wolf is going through their first change.

How we would hear the soul of their human self entwine with the soul of their wolf. For the wolves its a beautiful thing to hear, but also brutally painful for the one changing.

It’s when the wolf is at it’s weakest point. We would hear two things, their scream and their wolfs painful howl as the process to entwine their souls together happens.

All of the energy seemed to be draining out of me when the door to my room suddenly bust open.

The last thing I saw before I completed the change was the eyes of my base leader, my grandfather, held with mischief...

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