Her Mythical Warriors (Book One)

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Chapter Ten: Story by the Fire

Akira sighed and leaned against a tree. “Yeah, hiking is so freaking fun,” she said out of breath.

Wolfric chuckled. “Didn’t you hike while you were alone in the forest for five years?”

She wrinkled her nose at him and slid down the trunk of the tree to the leafy ground. “My hiking area wasn’t near this big. I could not chance getting lost from the crash site. How else were you going to find me?” Akira said with a cheeky grin.

He smirked as he sat down next to her. “All right, we will take a break.”

“Thank the Gods,” Akira said, laying her head against his shoulder.

Wolfric chuckled and moved his arm out from under her head. He wrapped it around her and pulled her closer. She snuggled against his warmth and closed her eyes.

“We should stop for the night soon anyways,” Malique said, looking up at the darkening sky.

“Just another mile, and we will make camp,” Wolfric said, holding their Havent close to his side.

“I think we wore her out and didn’t get any fun out of it,” Malique said with a chuckle when he heard Akira’s soft snore.

Wolfric chuckled, “we should get that mile out of the way so we can make camp. She’s probably starving too.”

Malique nodded and watched Wolfric lift Akira into his arms, then stand. They started down the trail again, hopefully heading toward their Havent’s next Warrior.

~⚔~

Akira woke to the smell of cooking fish. Her stomach growled, and she heard her Warriors chuckle.

“Rise and shine, cupcake,” Malique said, squatting beside her.

She opened her eyes and scrunched her nose at him. “Don’t call me that.”

Malique chuckled. “As you wish, Psychi,” he said, then smiled and held a cup out to her. “It’s fresh spring water,” he assured her when she eyed it.

Akira sat up and took the cup from him, then took a drink. She sighed with pleasure. It was sweet and refreshing.

“How did you catch anything with everything frozen?” she asked, looking over at the fire where the fish was cooking.

“Magic,” Malique said with a wink—he stood and walked over to their bags.

Wolfric chuckled at the look on their Psychi’s face. “There is a stream not far from here that runs year-round. It doesn’t freeze.”

She looked at him and nodded, then took another drink of her water.

Soon the fish were cooked, and Wolfric brought her a plate filled with fish and some kind of vegetable he had found and boiled over the fire. The fish was good, and the vegetables were interesting. When she finished, she set her plate beside her and stared into the flames of the fire.

“Penny for your thoughts?” Wolfric asked, watching her.

Akira smiled and stretched her arms above her head. “I actually wasn’t thinking about anything,” she said, still smiling.

Wolfric smiled back, then stood and gathered her plate. “I better clean up—we don’t want to attract any bears or wolves. You don’t want to see one of those in a Mythical dimension,” he said with a grin.

Akira smiled and pulled her knees up to her chest, setting her chin between them. “What now?” she whispered.

“How about stories?” Wolfric said, placing another piece of firewood onto the fire.

“What kind of stories?” she asked, looking up at him.

He grinned down at her. “I would say scary stories, but that’s too cliché.”

She snorted, then turned her head and laid her cheek on her knees.

“How about the story of how I met the biggest, ugliest wolf,” Malique said as he sat on the ground next to Akira.

Akira’s head popped up, and she looked at her Warrior. “I’d like to hear that one.”

Wolfric grumbled to himself, and Malique chuckled.

“She doesn’t even protest when he calls me ugly,” Wolfric said, turning his back to them.

Malique laughed and picked up a stick, then tossed it into the tree line. “Fetch,” he said, making Wolfric growl.

Akira giggled, “I didn’t say anything because I know it’s not true. Besides, I do not think Malique meant it,” she said, turning to look at Malique. “Right?”

Malique grinned at her, then looked at his friend. “Nah,” he said, then turned back to Akira. “It was before you were born. He was still looking for his Havent. His one and only. His Psychi,” Malique said, a mischievous smile forming on his face. “And I was looking for my next meal.”

~⚔~

-Thirty Years Ago-

“Damn it, Kaident, I’m not coming home until I find her—I do not care what Mother says! She’s out here, and I will find her!”

“Excuse me,” a young woman said as she bumped into Wolfric.

Wolfric ignored her and continued to argue with his brother.

“No, I’m not coming home to work for you and Francent. I’m going to look for my Havent.”

A scream had Wolfric turning around. “I’ve got to go—someone is in trouble.”

Wolfric quickly hung up the phone and ran toward the alley where the scream had come from. When he entered the alley, he found the girl who had bumped into him, pinned to the wall by a tall man.

“Delicious,” the man said as he lifted his head from her neck.

The girl was weak and slipping out of the Vampire’s grasp.

“Let her go,” Wolfric said with a growl.

The Vampire turned from the girl and smirked at the Wolf. “Hello, dog.”

Wolfric snarled and took a step toward the Vampire.

“Ah-ah-ah,” the Vampire said, spinning around.

The girl was in his grasp, her back against his chest.

“Come any closer, and I will snap her neck,” he said, holding the girl’s neck in his grasp.

Wolfric stopped moving and glared at the devilish man. Werewolves have never gotten along with Vampires, and it was the same for the Direwolves.

“Let her go,” Wolfric said, watching the girl’s eyes close.

She will need a blood transfusion once he gets her away from the filthy creature.

The Vampire smirked. “I found her—she’s mine,” he said, then licked her neck where he had bitten her. “So divine,” he whispered.

Wolfric growled and took a step toward them.

“Stop,” the Vampire said, his nails digging into the girl’s throat, making her whimper.

Wolfric stopped but kept his eyes on the Vampire and smirked.

“Good boy,” the Vampire said.

“Stanley, my man. I have been looking everywhere for you,” a voice said from another entrance to the alley.

“Fuck,” Stanley grumbled.

Wolfric watched another Vampire walk out of the shadows and growled.

“Easy now,” the newcomer said.

The new Vampire raised his hands to show the Direwolf he meant no harm, then turned to the other Vampire.

“Give me the girl Stanley; you have drunk enough from her.”

Stanley snarled at him. “Fuck you, Malique. Just because you don’t kill your prey doesn’t mean the rest of us have to follow your lead.”

Malique moved so fast, Stanley screamed as he was ripped away from the girl and held several inches off the ground by his throat.

Wolfric moved in and pulled the girl out of the way.

“How many times do I have to tell you and your kind that you are not welcome in my city?” Malique snarled in the Vampire’s face.

“My kind? You’re one of us, you fucking….”

He did not get to finish what he was saying as Malique ripped the Vampire’s head off and dropped the body. He turned to the Direwolf and smirked.

“May as well take the girl to the hospital,” he said with a nod, then turned and disappeared into the night.

Wolfric looked down at the girl. She was still breathing, barely. He lifted her into his arms and took off for the hospital. Who was that Vampire? And why did he tear the head off one of his own kind?

~⚔~

Wolfric walked out of the hospital, shaking his head, still confused about what had happened in the alley.

“How is the girl?”

Wolfric turned around to find the Vampire behind him—grinning.

“She’ll live,” Wolfric said, eyeing the Vampire.

Malique smiled. “Good. So, how does a drink sound?”

Wolfric blinked. Vampires do not usually ask a Direwolf out for drinks. Was this some kind of trap?

Malique smirked. “Suit yourself,” he said, then turned and headed down the sidewalk.

“Hey, wait up; I have a few questions to ask you!” Wolfric called out, running to catch up with the Vampire.

Malique turned his head and smiled at the wolf. “Have a drink with me, and I will tell you anything you want to know.”

They made it to a bar and sat down at a table. They each ordered a beer, and Wolfric watched him.

“So, why did you kill that Vampire?”

Malique snorted, “I’ve been after him for years. He kept escaping me.”

“What are you? Hunting your own kind?” Wolfric asked.

Malique smiled at the waitress and set their drinks on the table, then turned to the wolf. “They’re not my kind. And I have rules I go by. Which is, no killing,” the Vampire said, then took a drink of his beer. “Unless necessary.”

“So, you don’t drink blood? Or do you not enjoy it?” Wolfric asked, watching the Vampire drink the mug of beer.

It was not every day he had a drink with a Vampire.

Malique snorted, “I enjoy blood very much. But I leave my victims alive.”

Wolfric blinked. “Wait, what kind of Vampire are you?”

Malique chuckled. “Rare,” he said, then leaned across the table. “I’m an Upir.”

Wolfric blinked. He has heard of them, of course. Him being a Direwolf rather than a werewolf or shifter. When you grow up in a Mythical environment, you learn about other Mythical creatures. He has never met an Upir before.

“This, I have got to see,” Wolfric said with a smirk.

The Upir laughed, “when morning comes, we will go for a walk in the sun.”

Wolfric chuckled. “I’ll hold you to that,” he said, holding his mug of beer up to the man.

“I’m Malique, by the way,” the Vampire said, holding his hand out to the wolf.

Wolfric grinned. “Wolfric.”

Malique chuckled as they shook hands. “Okay—Wolf.”

“Do you need to eat?” Wolfric asked, eyeing the Vampire.

Malique smirked. “I was on the prowl for my dinner when I came across the three of you in the alley.”

Wolfric frowned. “And?”

“And the man is at home now with his wife and kids, no memories of being in an alley, let alone with me.”

Wolfric snorted. “Have you thought of using donation blood instead?”

Malique grinned. “Why are you offering to donate?”

Wolfric scoffed, and Malique laughed.

“Don’t worry, Wolf. I do not care for the taste. And yes, I have considered it.”

Wolfric nodded. “My family owns a blood bank.”

Malique grinned a mischievous grin. “Well, I do believe you just became my best friend.”

~⚔~

-Present Time-

“So, you don’t hunt for your meals?” Akira asked, looking at Malique with wide eyes.

Malique smiled. “Not since I met Wolf Boy,” he said, nodding toward Wolfric.

Wolfric grumbled, and Malique and Akira chuckled.

“So, you really have been looking for me for a long time,” Akira said, looking at Wolfric.

Wolfric snorted, “for most of my life.”

“How old are you?” she asked in a whisper.

Wolfric smiled. “Fifty-three.”

She nodded and yawned. “That’s a long time,” she said, her eyes drooping.

“Time for bed,” Wolfric said.

He walked over to their Psychi and lifted her into his arms.

“Okay,” she said, leaning her head against him and closing her eyes.

Malique chuckled and followed Wolfric and their Psychi to the spot they had cleared for their bed.

“I think we bored her to sleep,” Malique whispered.

Akira sighed against her Wolfie. “No. Just tired.”

Wolfric laid Akira on the ground, then laid down beside her and pulled her head onto his shoulder. Malique smiled and laid down behind her, placing his hand on her hip.

“Good night, little Havent.”

“Good night, my Vampire Warrior,” Akira whispered sleepily.

Wolfric chuckled and pulled her closer to his side. With his body warmth in front of her and Malique’s behind her, they made sure their little Havent did not freeze.

~⚔~

Akira woke shivering and reached for her Warriors. When she felt nothing, she sat up and looked around. It was still night, and her Warriors were gone.

‘What the hell?’

Akira scrambled to her feet and looked around their little camp. All of their stuff was still there, but her men were gone.

‘Where did they go?’

Surely, they did not go to the bathroom at the same time and leave her alone. She heard a holler of pain coming from further in the forest and turned in the direction she had heard it. That was her Wolfie. Someone is hurting her Warrior. Akira growled and ran in the direction she could still hear him hollering.

“I’m coming, my love, I’m coming,” she huffed as she jumped over logs and tripped over roots.

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