The After Effects

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I Can Explain

"I can explain." Soren held up his perfectly healed hand.

"What kind of explanation could you possibly have for that?!" My voice came out in a panic as I pointed Ragnar to his stall. Pitching some grain into his feeder, I continued with my panic ranting. "I stabbed you. I clearly remember stabbing you for being grabby hands. I remember watching your blood run down the wall. There's no way that it could possibly be healed." Once finished feeding Ragnar, I started pacing in front of his stall as Soren put his mare away.

My rants and pacing continued until Soren stood in front of me.

"Ivy," Soren said, snapping me out of my head, my emerald green eyes met his bright blue iris's. "Breath." He instructed.

I tried taking a deep breath until my ranting continued on mid-breath. "It's just not humanely possible. I would know, I've been stabbed plenty of times."

"Ivy, please for the love of Odin, shut your mouth." Soren snapped, his hands reaching for me before he remembered what happened last time.

I turned to him and gawked. "You're not real!" I declared. "This whole time you've been a figure of my imagination. I'm still in the forest, aren't I? Oh no, the Vikings found me, didn't they? Now I'm being dismembered and defiled while imagining hot princes."

A growl suddenly ripped from Soren's throat and I watched as his bright blue eyes swirled with a dark blue color, until the bright blue was gone and replaced completely with a deep navy shade of blue.

"You're eyes just changed." I gulped.

"Are you done?" He asked, his eyes fading back to their usual icy blue color.

I could only nod as I watched his eyes intently.

"Do you want to see it to believe it or let me tell you?" Soren asked, as he reached up and started unbuttoning his shirt until it just hung around his shoulders.

Oh my.

"I'll start with explaining." Soren declared as he grabbed my hand and started leading me away. "So Acer," Soren turned to talk as he walked. "What do you know about dragons?"

"Drag-" I stuttered. "Like from the fairy tales?"

"Sure, fairy tales." Soren grinned.

"They're big and they like gold?" I said, my voice weak as I tried to figure out where this was going.

"And if I said they're real?" Soren said, no longer walking as he turned to me. I looked around to see where we were and figured we were in the court garden, though it seemed different.

"I'd call you cra-" I was cut off by a loud roar. My eyes immediately searched the premises for whatever made the sound. The sky drew my attention and my heart stopped dead in my chest.

In the distance, a huge freaking bird flew across the sky, its wings flapping against the wind as it soared with ease. That's not a bird. I admitted as it got closer and I saw the tail trailing it.

The creature flew overhead, it's huge form casting a shadow the size of a house.

"What was th-" I turned to where Soren was standing, only to spot a pile of clothes on the ground in his place.

A loud snort caught my attention and I hesitantly looked to see what made the sound.

"Holy Norse Gods." I fell down, scrambling backward as the creature in front of me snorted again.

Ice puffed out of the huge nostrils that were too close to me for comfort.

What is happening?

I stood up and plastered myself to a nearby tree as my eyes studied the creature.

In short, the creature was massive. I stood as tall as one of its legs and its head was the size of two horses. Giant wings stood at least fifteen feet tall and it's tail, which was curled around and laid next to me, was at least three times longer than me.

The whole body was colored a pitch-black color that perfectly blended with the dark blue eyes that were peering at me with curiosity.

Its tail was spiked and ended with an arrow looking point. The spikes continued on up its tail and back. Reaching all the way up its long neck.

It's head laid on the ground in front of me, a playful position as it watched my every breath. The head had two horns that pointed backward and his mouth was filled with razor-sharp teeth.

A dragon.. an actual fricking dragon is staring at me. My mother was right, all those bedtime stories... I could only stare in wonder at the creature in front of me. Every detail of it was majestic and beautifully put together.

As I stared into the dark blue eyes, I realized who was behind them. The dark blue eyes that I had just seen mix with Soren's icy blue eyes.

"Soren?" I gasped softly as I took an involuntary step forward. His eyes widened, as I slowly reached a hand out to touch his nose.

My hand met firm leathery hide.

He snorted again, ice flying from his nostrils, which made me jump back with a shriek.

Humor danced in those eyes, reminding me of Ragnar and the intelligence behind their eyes.

"You're a dragon?" I asked, quite dumbly. "How?"

Soren raised his head as his scales started shimmering, his black scales became covered with bright light for seconds, before his huge dragon form disintegrated and human Soren was standing in front of me.

His hands-on his hips, Soren stood grinning at me.

"You're a dragon?" I repeated. "Like an actual dragon?"

"How is that not apparent to you?" Soren rolled his eyes. "Yes, I'm a dragon."

I pointed to the sky.

"That was an illusion that I created for you so I could shift without giving you a heart attack," Soren explained. Thoughtful, but I still almost died.

"Are there more magical things?" I asked, somewhat scared of his answer.

"There's a whole world out there that you don't know about yet." Soren grinned at me again, he offered his hand, which for some reason I took and allowed him to lead me around the garden as he talked.

He talked until the sunset...

When he said a whole world he meant a whole world. From other shifters, to fae, to vampyres, and so many other supernatural creatures filled this world apparently. From magic and powers, to sorcery and wielding.

I took it all in, fascinated with this whole other population that I knew nothing about. And although I knew nothing about the creatures and stuff he talked about, it wasn't the first time I had heard of these things.

My mother used to tell my siblings and I bed stories. Stories filled with magical worlds that sounded just like the one Soren was telling me about.

Soren explained that his hand had healed so fast because of his other half. Which is apparently what he refers to his dragon as.

And although Soren had eventually led me to my suite, where Locke and Harper were sound asleep, my mind didn't leave the subject. I processed everything, thinking about the stories my mother used to tell us and comparing them with Soren's words.

Well... This day had taken quite a turn. I don't know how, but I eventually found sleep. Though my dreams were filled with creatures and magic, something I welcomed.

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