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By Serendipitystears All Rights Reserved ©

Adventure / Fantasy

Chapter 1

They were traveling through the city side by side at night, when the boy was taken. Out of nowhere the strangers had come dragging the boy off into their old truck, as he shrieked and begged to be freed. The second truck, which had gone un-noticed by her in her struggles to reclaim the boy, was used as a battering ram to knock her unconscious so that she would not follow. Though if they were lucky the blow she took might kill her too. The last thing she saw before the darkness and pain swallowed her world, was the boy’s screaming face. Upon waking in the middle of the road to the loud blast of a car horn, she immediately set off to find her stolen charge.

Wandering about with broken ribs and a partially fractured spine was nothing new. It would be fully healed soon enough, and she had more important things to pay attention to anyway. Like the scent of her own blood and agony lacing the breeze, and the bitter salty smell of the boys tears and terror twining through it. Following the new trail led to an urban neighborhood, trees lined the road on either side like dark sentinels, guarding the occasional lamppost and driveway. All trivial details, in light of the fact, that her boy was here somewhere. It was the rundown house in the middle of the block that caught her interest, as she heard the faint sounds of the boy’s cries. Darting through the dark, slipping through even darker shadows under the trees nearest the house, she found what she sought. An uncovered window revealed the sight of her boy, naked and crying beneath a woman old enough to be his mother. The sickening sight of such depravity, had her stomach rolling in protest. Between one ragged, agonized breath and the next, the teenage girl dashed around the side of the house intent on stopping the woman and saving her boy from such horrors.

The garage door was up, and the trucks from her previous encounter with these people were parked one behind the other in the driveway. In her headlong rush to rescue her boy, the girl failed to take into account the men that were lingering about inside the junk filled space. Caught in the middle by a blow to her ribs, she went down with only a pained huff of expelled air. Retching and gasping, the teen attempted to stand, only to receive a heavy stomp to her already badly damaged spine. Tears flowed down her cheeks, and blood poured from parted breathless lips as they continued to attack. Feet, fists, knees, and even a metal pipe rained down upon her balled up form. Every blow that fell, could only be matched by a symphony of gasps, and choked off cries, that were forced from her body. As the barrage let up, she could hear the sound of a pair of heavy boots making their way towards her crumpled form. With one eye already swollen shut, the teen craned her head up to see the newcomer. An older man than the rest, was the one to grab her long snow white braid, to make the viewing of her damaged face easier. “Purty li’ll thing for a monster.” He spat. “Think I’ll make a death mask o’ er ta go with the boy’s after ma’s done with em.” As the man’s voice trailed off, another was added to the fray. “Yew wan us ta wait fer th swellen t’ go down pa?” One of the bastards to her left asked. “Nah, jest shoot er now so’s we don’t gotta deal wit er trying ta escape with the brat.” He huffed. The girl glared up at the old man through her only good eye as he spoke, even though it too was rapidly blackening from its encounter with a knee earlier.

“Let me see him!” She hissed. “Keep a gun on me if you want, but let me see him!” It was the sound of the side door to the house opening up, that gained everyone’s attention. “If you wanna see the little shit, here he is.” A woman’s voice crooned into the volatile atmosphere. The woman she had seen earlier, sodomizing her charge, was standing in the doorway with the child in hand, and dressed once more. The realization that she had not been in time, ate away at her mind like acid. The moment he saw her collapsed form, the boy bit the woman’s arm as hard as he could to facilitate his speedy release. The woman shrieked and jerked back from the boy, freeing him to rush into the arms of his downed protector and weep brokenly. None of their tormentors expected what happened next. Pulling from a deep well of strength the teen lurched to her feet in a bid for freedom, and ran for the street, with the boy in her arms. A gunshot issued from behind them as her bare feet struck asphalt, and turned left.

Stumbling in her run as fire blossomed in her back, and bones cracked under violent impact and flesh tore. She nearly dropped her small charge as her body bent under the shotgun’s blast, though she pushed herself to continue. The pounding of many booted feet and the angered shouts of their captors followed them, as the girl bolted for the end of the block. Cutting another left through someone’s lawn, she managed to gain some distance from their attackers even as she heard the distant sound of vehicle doors slamming, and engines starting. Several blocks down and somewhere to the right later, came the squeal of tires once again intent on doing damage. Struck from behind once more, the white haired teen toppled forward, and would have landed on the boy in her arms had she not twisted to one side at the last moment. He fell free of her arms and immediately rolled to his feet, running off into the darkness with the distinctive sound of his guardians spine snapping, with a wet echo in his ears. Their pursuers were already out of their trucks, and a few had taken off on foot to chase the boy down. The rest stayed to kill the girl. Spine already reconnected, the girl was rushing her abusers with inhuman speed, before they could truly comprehend just what she could do. Managing to take out three of them before she was mobbed, the teen steadily fought as more blows landed on her still damaged frame. A change overtook her features. The closer they crowded, the easier it became to alter her looks to match theirs in the chaos of flailing limbs, and bodies. Snow white hair darkened and shortened. Small and feminine, became larger and more manly in appearance. Finally her looks had changed enough in the madness of the fight, that even though they had noticed, she still managed to slip from one form to the next. Even the clothing that she wore had altered to mimic those surrounding her.

It took some time but she was finally thrown from the fight, as they attacked each other and she made her escape unnoticed. Keeping her disguise, the girl took off after the scent of her boy. When she finally caught up to him, he was struggling with one of the men that had managed to catch him as he tried to scale a wooden fence in his effort to keep his freedom. In her disguise as one of those responsible for their torment, she grabbed the boy from the other man, and threatened the child into silence. “If ya don’t stop yer struggelen boy, Im’ma gut that bitch while ya watch.” The boy froze, staring up at his captor in terror.

The other man chuckled and led the way back to the trucks, failing to notice that though the pair had been walking close behind at first, now they seemed to be steadily lagging in speed. As the man looked back to make a rude comment about the boy, to his brother, he was met with the sight of an empty street. Yelling and cussing the man ran for the trucks to gather the others, and continue their hunt.

Once out of view with the struggling boy clutched in her arms, and still in her shifted form. The teen shushed his struggles and spoke. “It’s me, it’s me.” She murmured in her own voice. “Now hush up so we aren’t noticed!” Looking up into the man’s morphing, and increasingly familiar face, the boy fell limp with relief. The sound of distant yells spurred her into action. Swinging the boy onto her mostly healed back, the girl then dropped to all fours. Running with great speed as the boy clung to her bloody frame for dear life. They made their way down another street, heading towards the predawn light, and the scent of the bay. Hands and feet striking the ground in a rhythmic tattoo, the girl watched the purple grey light of dawn grow. Too much light too soon would reveal them to anyone who might chance to look. But she could already see the roads dead end into the bay. Even with burning lungs, and still shattered ribs the lithe girl continued on. As she drew near the end of the road, a flock of startled pelicans took flight. “I hope no one sees them, and thinks it’s us.” The boy whispered, as the girl paused to evaluate their potential escape routes. “Same here,” She rasped. Spotting a floating dock with what looked to be pool toys, and a couple of blow up rafts, the girl darted along the sea wall on all fours and jumped for the nearest edge of the floating structure.

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1. Chapter 1
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