He rang the bell once and then Casey's dad opened the door with a serious look on his face.
"My favorite uncle." Bradley greeted him casually like he always does but he didn't respond like he always does.
"Bradley. Come on in." He said in a serious tone.
Bradley wondered why his uncle was so serious today but he was yet to find out. He walked inside the house and Casey's dad closed the door behind them. They walked to the living room and sat down. He placed the gifts he bought for Avery on the couch.
In a serious tone he said, "Don't worry, I know why you're here but I wanted us to talk first."
"Uncle Alex, what's with the serious talk?" He asked with a chuckle.
"If you want to make it to your date with Avery, you better take this serious." He said and Bradley stopped chuckling. "Good. I want to talk to you about Avery. She's under my roof now which makes her my daughter too. So I take responsibility for her wellbeing, meaning if she gets hurt I'm going to rip out your heart with my bare hands." He threatened.
Bradley's eyes went wide when he heard his uncle say that to me but he understood that Casey's dad didn't want Avery to get hurt.
"I promise not to hurt her uncle Alex." He quickly said.
"You better keep that promise because we both know what will happen if you don't." He warned. "You better keep it in your pants too, you're too young for all of that." He added and Bradley was so embarrassed.
"Uncle Alex..." he trailed off.
"I'm being serious." Casey's dad warned him.
"Okay.. okay I heard you." Bradley said sounding dismissive of that topic.
"Good. I'm glad we had this talk, I'll go and call the girls." He suddenly smiled, stood up from the couch and walked to Casey's room. "Are you girls decent?" He asked slightly knocking at their door.
"Yes dad." Casey replied opening the door, then walked out.
Avery walked out of the room after her bestie, looking very pretty. Casey bought her an Off-the-shoulder draped cotton-blend poplin midi white dress that made her curly red hair pop out. She wore Casey's white Adidas sneakers that complimented her dress.
"Wow, now I feel like accompanying you on this date. I'm not sure Bradley will behave himself when he sees you looking this pretty."
"Mr. Huxley, I'm going to be fine." Avery said to him with a small chuckle.
"I know sweetheart, well he's waiting for you in the living room." He said to her.
Mr. and Mrs. Huxley and Casey walked with Avery to the living room.
When she entered the living room she came across Bradley's eyes. He took in all of her as she approached him and a smile appeared on his face. He walked towards her holding the white rose in his hand. They stood in front of each other with warm smiles.
"Montgomery... you are a vision." He complimented her. Mr. Huxley cleared his throat glaring at Bradley and Avery chuckled. "This is for you." He handed her the rose. He said.
"Thank you." She took it, bringing it closer to her nose and took in the sweet scent of the rose.
"All the other gifts are also for you." He said to her pointing at the couch.
Avery looked over at them and replied. "Thank you."
"You're welcome. Shall we go and have a fun day?" he asked.
"I'd like that very much." She replied.
He took her hand and they walked towards the door. Avery suddenly stopped in her tracks and she left Bradley's hand and jogged back towards Casey's parents and hugged them. "Thank you for letting me go out. I promise to be back soon, like you suggested." She said to them.
They hugged her back. "You're welcome sweetie. Enjoy your first date." Mrs. Huxley said. She finally stepped away from them and looked over at Casey. She walked over to her bestfriend and hugged her.
"Max out his credit card bestie." Casey said to her and they both laughed.
"You really are my bestfriend. You're the only human being who would advise me to do that on my first date." She replied and they laughed again.
Bradley and Avery finally left the Huxley residence going on their first date.
When Bradley first asked her on a date it was adorable. Afterwards, Bradley asked her what her ideal first date was and she said she always wanted to have fun on her first date. She didn't want the typical date of going to the movies, having dinner in some expensive restaurant and all that. She wanted to go to places where she can see nature, animals or explore the place she lives in with the person she liked.
So Bradley thought of a few ideas where he could take her and he just thought of a typical place he knew she'd like.
His guard drove them there. The car ride was pleasant because a few songs she liked played in the background. He offered her a chocolate snack bar and she took it from him and they both ate it during the car ride.
They finally arrived at the zoo and they saw different kinds of animals. Avery was so excited like a little kid. Bradley took his camera with him and he took pictures of her whenever he got a chance. Avery felt giddy being there because it was her first visit to the zoo and it was amazing. They were wandering, walking and strolling in the lanes and paths of the zoo admiring all the beautiful animals they came across.
He suddenly held her hand and it fitted perfectly in his as they kept strolling around the refreshing atmosphere of the zoo. Avery loved the warm, calloused palm of his hand around hers and she smiled at him and wrapped her arm around his, slightly laying her head on his shoulder.
She took the camera from him and she also took pictures of him. They asked the guard that accompanied them to take a few pictures of them together and he did that. They came out beautifully. Avery looked through them with a smile on her face.
They stopped at the little cute ice cream cart and Bradley bought Avery an ice cream with all the flavors she wanted and she ate it wholeheartedly. He just looked at her in awe. Looking at her made him feel like he was the luckiest guy on the planet to be in the presence of a girl like Avery. She was a good hearted individual and she looked after other people before herself but today he was the one looking after her and it felt good.
He took out his handkerchief in his pocket and wiped the ice cream off her nose and cheek. "Did I spill on myself?" She asked cluelessly and he nodded with a small chuckle.
"Don't worry, you're all good now." He replied.
She ate her cone until she was finished. It was so good that she wondered when last did she eat ice cream. Well, it didn't matter because she enjoyed it very much.
Once their tour around the zoo came to an end they left. Bradley's guard drove them to the aquarium. He handed her a pamphlet that briefly explained the different fishes at the aquarium. This time she was really fascinated when she saw the different kinds of animals. She was pointing at the big fishes and running around the aquarium while Bradley was strolling behind her looking at how happy his girlfriend was.
She stopped when she saw a shark passing by the glass window. "Wow, it's so big. I've never seen one before, until now." She said looking at it.
"Fun facts about sharks is that they do not have bones, most sharks have a good eyesight, especially in dark lighted areas. They have a fantastic night vision, and they can also see colors. Here's another interesting fun fact about them- their skin feels similar to sandpaper." He explained to her.
"Really? Wow, that's very interesting. I always viewed them as extremely dangerous predators. I never knew this about them." She replied.
"Well you're right when you say they're dangerous predators but they also have an important role in the ecosystem. They maintain the species below them in the food chain and serve as indicators for the health of the ocean." He explained further.
"Really? I always thought they were just angry aggressive animals." She stated with a chuckle.
He laughed a low laugh at her statement. "Well, they're just defending themselves against the creatures they're afraid of. For instance, they're afraid of humans and dolphins, so they try hard to stay away from these creatures but if they feel threatened, they attack. It's just their defense mechanism." He said.
"Wow, that's very interesting hey. How do you know all this though?" She asked curiously.
"I read a lot, that's why. I also like watching animal channels, they point out very interesting facts about animals." He explained.
"I see, well you have a good memory too. You remember all these facts about them." She stated.
"I try." He humbly said.
"Do you have a favorite animal?" She asked him.
"I do." He replied.
"What is it?" She curiously asked.
He shortly replied, "Seahorses."
She didn't expect that answer, because guys usually prefer lions or rhinos and so forth. "Really? Why though?" she asked.
"Because they're truly unique. Their unusual equine shape fascinates me a lot. Unlike most fishes, they're monogamous and mate for life. What's even more rare is that the Male seahorse is the one that gives birth to the young. They may also appear to be harmless, unassuming creatures with their slow, gentle little demeanors but they're actually one of the most deadly little creatures." He explained.
"They truly sound unique. I learned something about you today." She smiled at him and he smiled back.
"What's your favorite animal?" He asked her.
"You'd be surprised to know that I don't have one. I've never given myself time to actually think about an animal I like."
"I'm sure in time you'll find one you like, don't worry." He assured her. They explored for a little bit, then they left the aquarium after Avery was satisfied seeing all the beautiful fishes.
Bradley was taking her to their family's private lake house where his dad gave him permission to go there. The road they were taking unfortunately had a block party upfront so they had to turn all the way back.
That scenery looked fun and refreshing and that caught Avery's eyes. "Can we go to the block party for a while, I'd like to see what they're doing?" She asked him.
Bradley looked like he was considering it. His guard looked at him in the mirror and shook his head. Being in a crowded place like this wasn't ideal for him, he wasn't safe.
"Is it okay?" She asked him.
"Yeah it's okay. We'll just check it out for a few minutes and return to the car." He suggested and they got out of the car.
His guard took him to the side. "Your highness, we spoke too many times about you being in crowded places like this one. It's not safe for you." His guard warned him.
"It's okay Daryl. I can protect myself. We won't be long anyway." He assured him. He turned to Avery but she wasn't in sight, he panicked when he didn't see her. He looked around, hoping to spot her but he didn't see her.
"Let's split up, we'll find her quicker that way." His guard said to him.
He nodded and they split up looking for her. Bradley went where there were lawn games but she wasn't there. She wasn't at the pool party either. He entered the face painting site but there was no sign of her. He walked further down the street and there she was. An old couple was offering her some barbecue meat and other variety of foods to try and she looked so cheerful trying them out and giving them feedback. Bradley was so relieved to see her so he took out his cellphone and texted Daryl that he found her even though she was a bit far from him. His guard texted back saying he'll be with them shortly.
Avery was having so much fun that she didn't realize that she was close to danger. When the block party was organized, the organizers invited the fire department trucks to also participate in the event and come display their trucks for show and entertain everyone.
The trucks were being driven carefully and participating at the party until a little kid ran past the truck and the driver swerved to Avery's side so he doesn't hit the kid. Everything happened too fast, but Bradley was way ahead of the fire department truck. He was at it's side in a split second, preventing it from hitting Avery. Everything stilled in for a few seconds before everyone recovered. Avery's heart was beating so fast and her eyes were closed because she thought that the truck was going to hit her.
She slowly opened her eyes and she came across Bradley's eyes. She was safe in his arms but there was something odd about his eyes. They had changed color. "Brad, your eyes..." she trailed off looking at his bright yellow, centered by a little grey in his eyes.
He quickly closed his eyes and opened them again and they went to it's original form. "Are you okay?" He asked her worriedly.
She didn't answer him because she saw the huge dent on the fire department truck where his hand was. She slowly removed his arm around her and she walked towards the truck and was in shook when she saw the huge dent he made to the truck. She turned to Bradley and he didn't have a scratch on him but he had left that damage to such a huge truck.
"How did you do that? How did you get to me so fast?" she asked him almost whispering. He looked at the dent and he was tongue-tied. He didn't know how to explain.
"Allow me to explain everything to you once we get out of here. Come with me." He said attempting to take her hand but she shifted from him and started walking by herself to where their car was parked.
They both hurried towards the car and they came across Daryl who saw what happened. This is exactly what he meant when he said Bradley wasn't safe being in public. His abilities are best kept secret. At least people didn't see much of the scene, except for the old couple that was with Avery. They saw bits and pieces of what happened so it wasn't a big deal. Daryl drove them out of the block party heading to the main road.
"Avery..." He attempted to touch her but she shifted away from him because she knew at this point that Bradley wasn't normal. "Ave... I'm not going to hurt you." he sweetly said.
"How?" She asked and he knew what she wanted to know.
"It comes from my abilities." He answered.
"Your abilities? Like your eyes?" she asked slowly turning to him.
"Yes, like my eyes." he replied. "I didn't want you to find out like this. I was going to ease you into it. I'm not exactly who you think I am. I mean I'm the same person, it's just that I'm not normal like other people. I've been trying to find the words to explain this to you but I never found any because I didn't want to lose you over this."
"What are you?" she hesitantly asked.
"Ave.." he trailed off hesitating to answer that question.
As calm as she was, she replied. "Just tell me."
He hesitantly answered. "A hybrid."
Her eyes went wide and her mouth slightly opened because she was in shock. She tucked her hair behind her ears and stared ahead because this was still a shock to her. This had to be a joke, right? She couldn't believe her ears still. This was insane. A hybrid?
"Please say something." he said to her.
She truthfully answered. "I have no words Brad."
"Montgomery, you're the first person to know this about me apart from my family and my guards. All my 17 years of existence I've lived with this secret about my self and at some point it became suffocating but throughout the years I learned to accept what I am. Instead of being afraid of my ability, I embraced it because this is what I am and I can't change it."
In her low voice, she begged him. "Bradley, please stop. Stop explaining and just take me back home."
"If you don't want to lose me then you won't say another word." She warned him.
Her ultimatum was heard. "Daryl, please take her home."
The drive home was quiet. Avery was still in shock that her boyfriend wasn't normal like other people. How was this even possible? He looks as normal as possible but there wasn't anything normal about him. He was super fast, strong, beautiful, has a voice that draws you in. Those were some of the things that she was able to point out about him. Thinking about it was unsettling. A hybrid? Meaning he wasn't even half human. He was a full on werewolf and a vampire. Those creatures have always been viewed dangerous and now she was dating one and he happened to be both. This didn't make any sense.
When Daryl parked the car in the drive way, Avery opened the door and quickly got out of the car. Casey and her family were on the lawn enjoying the weather today. They saw that Avery was upset though.
When Bradley followed her, Mr. Huxley stopped him.
"Avery, please wait..." Bradley tried stopping her but she just walked inside the house.
"What happened?" Mr. Huxley asked him and he ran his hands through his hair. "Howard, I asked you a question." He looked at him.
"Something happened and I had to use my abilities to protect her because she was in danger. She wanted to know what I am, so I told her and now she won't even look at me." he sadly answered.
"She knows that you're-" Bradley nodded before Mr. Huxley could even finish his sentence.
"She will never talk to me again right?" Bradley asked Mr. Huxley.
"It's probably just shock, I'm sure she will come around." Mr. Huxley assured him.
"At this point I hate what I am because I'm about to lose the best thing that has ever happened to me because of it." He said out of frustration and walked back to the car. Daryl drove the Prince home.
Avery was sitting in Casey's room holding the potion that her father gave to her eight years ago. "Daddy, you said I should use this whenever I'm scared but I have no idea how. I just found out that the guy I like he's a supernatural being and I'm terrified of what he is. I never believed in these things but now I'm slowly finding out that these people exist. First, it was an elemental and now it's a hybrid, what's next? You and mom would know what to do at times like these. Please show me a sign. Anything..." She spoke to herself looking at the potion, hoping something would happen, but nothing happened. She placed it in her dress pocket and just laid down on the bed wrecking her mind about the next step she was going to take but nothing came to mind.