The Darwin Chronicles, Book One: The Mountain Ranges

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Chapter 6

A small silver tabby cat met them in the woods. Emmett sensed that it was Amelia. He shivered, wishing that he'd at least had the sense to put on a shirt.

"Let's change," Emmett muttered. Isaac nodded, and they both shrank into cats and followed the silver tabby, who bounded swiftly and silently deeper into the woods. After about ten minutes of running, they stopped in a clearing, losing track of the silver cat.

"Where'd she go?" Isaac asked as they transformed back.

"Here." She stepped out from behind a tree.

"Why'd you take us here for?" Emmett asked.

"You're a Legend." She moved closer into the clearing.

"What? No, I'm not. How could you possibly know?"

"It's been like this forever. Legends can sense other Legends that haven't had their powers awakened yet."

"What-"

"Another Legend has to awaken the new one's powers. But here's the catch. They have to be from different Tribes. That's why no one ever knows who the Legends are in their Tribe until the Legends discover their new transformations. Your father taught me. I taught Samantha and Julie. Shall I teach you, too?" Emmett numbly nodded. "Good." She stepped closer. "First, it begins with the physical touch." She took his hand, and he inhaled sharply as a warm feeling filled him, flowing through his veins, pooling in his stomach, filling him with a rush of adrenaline, sharpening his senses. Amelia looked into his eyes, and he literally could not divert her stormy, piercing gaze. It was as if she was transferring something to him through their connection, and he felt a section of his brain waking up, as if it were a sleeping dragon in a cave, finally woken up by a storm. A breeze began to blow, causing her hair and nightgown and cloak to sway. He dropped to his knees, pulling her down with him. The warm feeling turned into a fiery, burning pain, coursing through his veins, burning in his stomach. The pain got worse and worse and the girl held the connection, his hand tightening on hers, until he finally could make a sound, grunting loudly. The connection broke, sending a warm gust of air rippling away from them, in all directions, like the ripples in water when you drop a stone in. He let go of her hand and dropped his head, panting, sweat slowly trickling down his bare band and neck, the cool air now feeling like a blessing.

"You okay?" Isaac put a hand onto his shoulder. "Amy, what did you do to him?"

"I awakened his powers," She said simply, watching Emmett. "You can try it now." Emmett looked up, a bit of anger and annoyance flashing in his gut.

"Try what?"

"Change into something. Anything." Her calm, dismissive demeanor at his pain made him more angry.

"Like what?"

She tilted her head. "You like dragons. Why don't you become a fire dragon?"

"Right," He snapped. She blinked unflinchingly at his obvious anger. He closed his eyes. This is stupid. I can't become a dragon, he thought, concentrating. He opened his eyes a few seconds later. His anger drained from him instantly as he saw the changes. He towered over the other two. Emmett looked back at his body, which had changed so that he had golden scales, white claws, and huge golden wings. Isaac stared, eyes wide and mouth ajar. Amelia simply looked on calmly. He shrunk back down. "No way."

The girl nodded. "It worked." A stick broke nearby, and her head turned quickly towards the trees. "We should go back." She turned back into a silver cat and bounded away.

"Let's go," Isaac said. They ran back to the house and climbed back in through Emmett's bedroom window.

Emmett settled back into his bed under the covers and lay awake for awhile, until he could hear Isaac's soft snores, processing the night's events. His senses were permanently sharper and better, and he felt more alert. He closed his eyes, allowing the peaceful sea of black to overtake him.

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