Kito was furious.
Pasha didn’t reveal a thing about what he wanted. He didn’t even speak about her, instead, he was stuck in a conversation about her trip to her home village and the Snatcher they had seen in the Snow woods sleeping. Later, when he had thought she was going to finally give him the information he desperately wanted, she just said some words before she went silent.
“Unlike Kai, I cannot give you the answer to all of your questions. Doing so will be against what lies before you. What I can tell you is to find where the two trees intertwine and arch in the Jungle. That is where you will find your answer.”
That was it. She didn’t want to talk afterward. He left with his anger hidden from her and his head low. He wanted the same explanation Kai had but instead received a riddle. Such a fool he was.
He would do what she said, however. He will try to find the trees she was talking about. When he did and if he found nothing he decided he would just give up on the thought of being with a mate. Perhaps he is meant to be the only one in the village to scout when others are with their females in the comfort of their warm beds at night.
He walked through the village, somehow managing to lose Caji to Zeta who needed his help for another small part of the preparations. Kito didn’t care, hiding away from the rest of the village as he moved behind a shack behind a stall that extra items are usually stored in. Kito liked to hide behind these shacks because they are void of any Xutashi’s. No Chayeene and Rhuzeche. He leaned against the back with his head low as he became sucked into his little world.
Where can two trees arch against each other be?
He had silence to himself before another presence came from around the shed and towards him. The presence voice was enough for him to know who it was if not from the sound of their footprints alone. “Hello, Kito.”
He opened his eyes and looked at Alira who stood beside him all dressed in ceremonial attire. Silk fabrics and beads with feathers in her hair, and although all of it was a grey color to him he could still see how beautiful Alira was. She is a beautiful Xutashi woman with her figure. Curvy with tone sculpted legs and up to the rest of her body, all muscle from climbing. He couldn’t see the color of her eyes which were green and like all other felines of his kind. She smiled at him and held her hands, “I was wondering where you were.”
He looked at her for another moment. There were times when they would have conversations and the times were growing more and more frequent. She would sometimes come to his hut and sometimes hers, he did not know why he would continue speaking with Alira even when he knew her intentions. She would even ask it again when they were alone but each time he refused. He would not mind the company of an unmated female, but he would not ruin his body or mind doing so. The conversation was enough for him.
“I was with Pasha,” he said as his tail curled under him. “But that wasn’t for long. The talk wasn’t even useful. ”
“You should have come with me instead,” she smiled still even if it showed her fangs. “We can return to my hut and speak some more. That little Kikera that follows you around won’t be there neither.”
“I am doing fine here,” he was quick to say. He didn’t trust going inside of her hut when her advances rise there, he did not like feeling her finger over his tattoos or her hand sliding on his chest. Her touches made his skin tighten and shudder in disgust. Yet he always continued to speak with her. “I do not like it when you touch me.”
“Why do you not like it when I touch you? We are friends.”
“And that is where we will stay,” his dark blue eyes narrowed. “We can talk for as long as you want, Alira. But I cannot change my instincts to make you happy. I will never accept your touches.”
She let the hurt show on her face. In her loneliness, she had hoped that Kito would help her give her what she wanted since there was no other way she could get it with any other. He was her best bet and she had known him since he was a little rambunctious cub that knew how to make the older Warriors so angry with his little pranks. Kito was smart and she admired him, who couldn’t? “Maybe you can get used to them.”
“That will not likely happen,” he shut his eyes. “Go enjoy preparing for the celebration. I heard everything is a beautiful sight.”
“If I could give you color, Kito, I would,” she boldly placed her hand on his arm. It remained still in one spot, solitary, not moving or caressing. She didn’t want him to throw her hand away like he sometimes does when she touched him, but she liked touching him. He had the golden tone to his skin that nobody else in the village has due to his long time outside of the village soaking in the sun. It matched the rest of his features, the muscle, and the tattoo on the chest, shoulder, and arm.
The tattoo was a Maurea tattoo that was painful to get so this one must have taken some serious amount of time, she had seen them do tribal tattoos before. They dig into the skin with stone tools but finished it was beautiful and smooth. She wished she could touch it. Maurea patterns she recognized as the three moons in the night sky and other strange symbols, some matched Pippie’s. It made his body more interesting to stare at than Kai, who just had a white faded scare on his torso.
He allowed her hand to stay. “But you can’t. ”
His words were usually so stern and cold. She wished that he was hers. Prayed Ser’avi every day but with little success, just like Kai. She wanted the fun Kito back.
“C-Could I at least kiss you?”
He looked at her in a flash at the strange suddenness of the question. He didn’t even think he heard it right. “What?”
“Can I kiss you?” Her bravery was a thing that always amazed Na’Kito. She somehow had the nerve to ask such a question like that. “No, Alira. That is not a good idea.”
“I-I was watching that Kikera and pale human kiss earlier,” she looked down like she was ashamed for admitting watching someone doing something personal like that. Yet, at the time, she just couldn’t help herself. “I could see how happy they were too. The little human looked happy and content with everything...”
“They are mates,” he said slowly. “That is why. Mates kiss, it’s what they do. I will not do the same with you just because another looked happy doing it.”
“I want to know what a kiss is like. I never had one before,” her ears lower. “It would be nice if you showed me. J-Just give me that.”
Tears formed in her eyes that she held back. She didn’t want to cry for it. “What would be the harm in that? Nobody will know. Everyone is too busy decorating. Just kiss me, please.”
He looked at her without speaking another word, and in his silence, she had moved closer to him. Closer than he ever allowed before, standing in front of him and leaving him standing in between a wall. He stated at her even with his close she was, and for a moment he even tested it. The sensations it gave off when she moved closer so little air was left in between them and she was looking up, her hand grabbing the strap over his chest to his satchel that she held to keep herself close. She could almost see him eye to eye but she was still just a few inches shorter.
Their bodies didn’t connect the way that it should and her scent didn’t call out to him, it disturbed him. Her presence nearly made him want to pull his away, like the same end of a magnet. Even when he took a moment to try everything just didn’t work out, his mind was running too fast for him and he was more stressed than calm. Nothing was the way it should. The stress and discomfort overpowered him.
The pieces didn’t fit. His very soul, if it could, growled at hers. Couldn’t she feel this? No, she was pushing herself to ignore it.
She moved closer and went to place her lips on his.
In a flash, maybe even faster than a blink, instincts kicked in. Not in the way that Alira would have liked. Before her lips could touch his hand was on her throat with his fingers digging into the outline of her jaw and he growled ferociously rough. It vibrated through her and she yelped and grabbed his thick wrist. “K-Kito!”
His face remained close to hers and he was still staring into the grey of her eyes. For a moment he was truly terrifying to her, her fear for her safety was shortly sensed by him. He growled again near her face. “You’re. Not. Mine.”
Some deep savage part of him lashed out in anger. Furious that the pieces didn’t fit. That it was being forced. That no part could fit him. Every strand of his being rejected the mere thought of her touching him, her lips on his, caressing his sensitive skin, and his rage was finally filling him like steamy boiling water rattling the lid. His growls became snarls and he began to hurt her with his control until she was struggling to scream. His grip even tightened further.
Na’Kito looked over Alira to see Kai’Riba standing nearby with his staff to his side. For a moment he thought Mia was around from the scent he carried but it was slightly faded. He discarded the thought instantly. Instead, he kept his strong hold on Alira as he gave his brother a lethal glare, his breathing so heavy his shoulders rose and fell promptly. He was becoming feral. She knew she had taken it too far.
“K-Kito please,” she had tears running down her cheek as she tried to pry his iron grip off. It hurt to move her jaw. “I-I’m sorry. I-I d-didn’t kno-ow.”
He looked at Kai still as his throat rumbled, “She’s not mine.”
“I know, Na’Kito, she isn’t. Let her go and come with me,” he spoke his full name to try to reason with him. Seeing his brother in this state was something he wasn’t ready for today. Alira should be thankful Kai had come in time. “We can speak about this normally. If you let her go I will not tell Zeta nor Ruro of this, this will be between us three, and it will remain in this spot when we walk away.”
Kito could feel the deep primal rage in him. He was so angry about everything. He wanted to blow off steam and Alira looked like the best way for that in the clouded domain of his mind. His pupils were slits and as sharp as the edge of a dagger, broadcasting a vibe more animal. Deep down Kai was worried. He didn’t want to have to get help.
“Breathe, brother,” Kai walked forward slowly and with no sudden moves, dropping his staff on the ground and placed his hand on Kito’s arm. “Put her down and we will speak. Us. She will go back to her hut.”
“She does not fit me. She forced it.”
Kai knew what he was talking about. At that moment he gave Alira a furious glance himself before giving his brother a calmer stare. “Of course she doesn’t fit you, she is not yours. She will never be yours. Let her go and she will tell nobody about this. I will try my best to help you.”
Something deep within him made him pry his hand and release her. She fell to the ground, unaware that she was even dangling, and with another glare from Kai made her run off in shame and fear. When she was out of sight Kai lowered his brother’s stiff arm back to his side and allowed him a chance to recollect himself, and once he did his ears lowered and a pained noise left his chest and he looked away. His tail was limp and his ears were flat.
“You should have told me about this,” Kai picked his staff back up from the ground. “Why didn’t you say anything about her?”
“It was for the company,” he felt ashamed now. “Female company. Even with all the signs...” He covered his face with his hands. “The elders never explained what would happen when the wait is too long. A part of me wanted to hurt her for trying to force the pieces to fit.”
“Do not give up hope,” he placed his hand on his shoulder to give him better reassurance that Alira could. Deep down Kai was outraged at her pushing him that way for something selfish, and later he would have a chat with her himself. Something he won’t tell Kito about. “Do not let this get the better of you the same as it had done Syrik before. There will come a time for you.”
“And when will that time be?” he growled again. “All I ever do is wait and watch others. I am no longer a young cub and I have nothing to go home to, so do I have to wait until I turn twenty-three? Or twenty-eight? Or am I just bound to stand by and watch all the others with a smile?”
“Each one of us must wait our time the same as any. My time, Nuru’s time, Dahl’s time. We all have a time and when that happens this wait will be forgotten and instantly forgiven.”
“Why can’t I just go somewhere and get her the same I did for yours?”
“Because that is what the Goddess planned,” he said. “If there comes a time for you to go to the human world to find your mate then take it, or somewhere else in this one. Only if you know who and where she is, other than that you must wait like the others. There are other unmated males here who dream of the same things you want, you are just older than any of them. Nothing has changed. Yours is just taking a little more time to prepare than the rest of them,” he moved his hand away. “Come with me even if you want to or not. You are going to speak to someone other than her. You need to speak to someone who will not keep you close to the edge like that again.”
Kai wasn’t asking. He was going to bring Kito back to the celebration if he had to drag him through the Market place to do it. Luckily Kito saved him the trouble and just followed him in whatever direction he wanted to go.
Kito didn’t have the energy to argue with him.