Tree Sweet Tree
It was maybe eight in the morning when I retired to my tree house. I quickly stripped off the last of the dirty clothes and piled them with the ones I peeled off earlier that I luckily remembered to bring with me after the scene in the main house. I was happy for Donovan winning but sometimes it was ridiculous on what they would bet on.
I heard Howl’s nails click on the wood floor and soon she would curl up on her bed for the day. She really was a girl’s best friend.
I yanked the tie out of my hair and let the deep brown curls fall over my shoulders as I pumped the water from the spout. It was the best way to conserve our resources but it could be a pain in the ass when it didn’t work properly.
I let the tub fill to my desired level before dipping my toes in and sinking into the only slightly warm water.
We didn’t get scolding hot water anymore, that was reserved for the beasts, but you get used to a mildly warm temperature after a while.
I liked my bath moments, it gave me time to go over what I had just done and what I should do next. I know I should do some training today but I also want to visit Jillian and our secret project. Maybe training could wait.
The tendrils of my brown hair floated in the water around my arms. I need a haircut but that was on the bottom of my list at the moment.
A deep sigh escaped my lips when I realized the water was getting colder. I scooted my butt to the other end of the tub while I lifted my legs up and over the side with the spout so I could clean my hair. With all the running around and stabbing from earlier I had a lot of dried blood in my hair and on my scalp. None of it was mine, thank God, but I did come very close to getting nabbed today.
Which reminds me, I have a note burning a hole in the pocket of my jeans from my second to the last kill today. It’s of course from Ba’al and I didn’t want to read it but he would just send more messengers.
I came up for air and soap and cleaned my hair quickly. I didn’t want to stay in here until I was shivering. Again.
I grabbed a clean towel from the left side shelf and dried off quickly. The humid air from outside the open window would keep me from completely drying off but it was a start. I just needed to get in something comfortable before I got too sticky.
I swung my hair up into a bun and secured it with a straight stick before it fell again. Walking out to the main part of the house I noticed Howl comfortably laying on her back with her belly in the air. When she slept like this I knew we were completely safe for the night.
Knowing that the electric would be at a minimum during the day I kept the windows open for the light and a few candles around just in case. I walked past the only photo on my wall, one of my parents shortly after they met, I stopped to look at it for a moment. They were two of the first people to found this haven and part of a large group of people that never got to live in it.
Growing up, we lived in a couple different places that the beasts couldn’t get to. Then they learned, grew, and found us. The last place my mother and I lived in was a community house filled with about fifty people and only ten of us survived the last attack. Since then, I’ve lived here and helped this place grow to what it is now. Impenetrable.
With a gated dome of silver surrounding a massive 20-acre piece of land with some of the last trees known to man or beast. We’ve used them for our homes and so much more. We’ve given back to nature and tried our hardest to keep the beast from destroying everything. And it was working but only while under the silver dome.
They’re allergic to silver. If it touches them their blood boils and their skin peels off. The dome is the last remaining structure made with silver, that they know of. My dagger and a few other pieces are all that’s left. They destroyed as much as they could get their hands on.
I lifted the necklace I was wearing for good luck and hung it on the corner of the photo frame. It used to be hers, but she laid it on me the night she told me to run away.
I scanned the room before me. It was small, cozy even, but I didn’t need much. A bathroom and one for sleeping are all I requested when it was time to build my house. Bookshelves were put in on one wall and filled with the books brought from all over. My house was the keeper of the last written words. There wasn’t much they didn’t take from us.
My hammock was chained up at the opposite end of the house where a kitchen would usually sit but since I never ate in here it didn’t make sense to have one. Feeling the sticky humidity of our environment I decided that clothes would only hinder my sleep.
I pulled the hammock apart and gently glided into its folds. For me, this was the only way to sleep, suspended in the air while being cradled by soft fabric. Plus, during the cold season, it was easy to stuff with blankets. Letting the hammock rock me back and forth as it supports my entire body. The gentle swaying made the lids of my eyes begin to close, I wasn’t quite sleeping but I wasn’t awake. I just let the swaying rock me until I was completely calm and comfortable.
That being said, it was the perfect time for something to go wrong.
Howl’s ears picked up on the sound before I noticed it. I heard her flip over quickly and listen to the room around us. I picked up on the footsteps outside of my cabin easily. Anyone around here knew I was sleeping and that I wasn’t to be disturbed...Whoever is walking around outside my house is going to regret it.
I didn’t move from the hammock and Howl didn’t move from her spot on the floor with her belly to the wood and her ears trained on the footsteps that were slowly creeping outside the door still. Gently rocking myself to the wall behind me where I hit a small and thin dagger between the slats of the wall’s wood. I slipped it out easily and slowly crawled out of the hammock making sure to keep my movements silent.
I signaled to Howl to stay low and on the ground for now. I would only need her if the person outside did something stupid and tried to attack me. But it usually didn’t get that far. I made it over to the front door in a few seconds and pressed myself against the door before I swung it open swiftly and came face to face with Comfrey, the last person I wanted to see today. I rested my blade right under his chin, close enough to give him a shave he desperately needed.
“What a welcome home, are you going to let me in, Redley, or are we going to fight here on your porch while you’re naked and I’m not wearing any shoes?” My blade pressed hard and closer to the bottom of his chin very close to his throat. “You’re not welcome here and you know it. Leave.” The only words he would hear past my lips today. The look in his eyes was something in between lust and anger. I wasn’t sure which I was more pissed off to see right now.
In a very quick move I stepped back from him and slammed the door in his face. Not today.