"Yes!" She demanded "And you know I'll win this argument. I always do. So you might as well show me or I'll hold you down and take them out myself." She closed the bathroom door and stood in front of it.
I knew I would lose this fight so I took a deep breath and told her to close her eyes. I took my contacts out, turned to the mirror and prayed she wouldn't scream and run away. Once they were out and I was facing her again I closed my eyes and told her to open hers.
She scoffed and said "Now you open your eyes." I hesitated and started deep breathing. But she walked closer and asked again "Open. Your. Eyes, Anna." My heart rate suddenly increased and my stomach was in my throat but I was too far to turn back now. I put my head down and slowly opened my eyes then lifted my head and watched as Val took in a hurried breath and stumbled backwards. A look of awe in her face. That's not the reaction I was used to. Her expression changed and she sighed then turned around and walked out the bathroom. Confused I reached for my contacts and put them back in trying to follow after her but she had already left the apartment. Great. The only friend I had and I just freaked her out on the second day we were in Virginia.
Val didn't come back home until later that night so I was forced to house hunt without her. Liz brought me to a nice ranch style house but I couldn't think of anything else but Val's face. She looked, disappointed. I tried calling her several times throughout the day but she kept ignoring my calls.
Finally I made it home and started dinner when I heard her coming through the door.
"Val there you are. I've been worried about you. Where have you been?"
She stood there staring at me contemplating what she should say when she walked towards me and grabbed my hand dragging me outside.
"Where are we going?" She didn't say anything as she continued walking towards the woods. I jerked my hand out of her grip and stopped "I'm not going in there, Val. It's dark and we don't know what's in there.
"She turned and said "Do you trust me?" I opened my mouth to talk and she stood there with her hands on her hips and said "Well?"
I sighed and said "You know I do. Why are you asking me that?"
She turned back around and headed towards the woods again. "Then follow me." I hesitated for a moment looking back at the complex checking to see if anyone was watching and followed her to the woods. I immediately felt the chill in the air and the watched as the thick fog settled in. I finally caught up with Val in a clearing as she was stripping off her clothing throwing them in a pile at her feet.
"Uh, Val. Why are you taking your clothes off? I mean I like you and all but not in that way."
She huffed and said "Turn around."
Not wanting to make her mad I turned around and said "If you kill me I'll come back and pull your toes at night!" Then I heard it. The sound that I tried to block out of my mind for years. The sound of the painful cracking of bones and growls that shook me to the core. I slowly turned around and came face to face with a brown and gold wolf. It stood there staring at me with its brown eyes and fluffy head. It's tail was still, ready for my next move. It tilted its head as I started walking towards it.
"Val? Val, is that you?" I was stunned but I kept walking to her. I stood there, face to face with her as she made a low growl as if answering my question. I put my hand out to touch her head and she hesitated for a moment before nudging my hand with her snout. I touched her head and she immediately rolled on her back shooting her paws up in the air and waging her tail. I smiled and layed down besides her as we starred up at the stars.
"Why didn't you tell me you were a wolf? I mean I know we said we wouldn't talk about our pasts but seriously?" She hit me with her paw as if saying why didn't you tell me about your eyes? I laughed and sat up. "Will you shift back? I think we need to talk." She jumped up and quickly shifted back to her human form where I handed her her clothes so she could change.
She sat back down besides me and asked "When were you going to tell me about yourself?" She said sounding sad and I let out a huge sigh.
"It's complicated, Val. I thought that life was behind me. I wanted to leave it behind me." I said looking off into the wide open clearing.
We sat there for a while in silence until Val started talking "Well if you aren't going to talk then I will. I was born in New Mexico to the Najavo Pack. My birth parents were not true mates. My father rejected his first mate because she was a common wolf with no status, he was the pack attorney and she was beneath him. My mother rejected her mate because he was human. They met years later and started dating. My mom was learning to become a healer but she never completed her training because she became pregnant with me. My father wanted a boy and immediately hate me. My mom was so mad at me for interrupting her training that they agreed to give me up to the pack elders. They didn't want me either so they traded me to our neighboring pack, the Peacekeepers." I gasped and grabbed her hand as the tears in her eyes started to slide down her cheeks. "When I turned 16, I left the pack to start college in Colorado. My pack had connections with the school so I was accepted immediately. No questions asked. I never met my mate but I know he is out there and I cannot wait to meet him."
I scouffed and Val looked at me like I was crazy. "What? You don't want to meet the man the moon goddess destined just for you?"
My face hardened and my heart sank as I said the words I had been saying for years "I don't believe in mates."