"Helen, are you getting up today, or what?" Luke grumbled from outside the tent.
"What time is it?" I muttered, rubbing my eyes. My back felt stiff and I had a dull ache in my neck from sleeping on a wafer thin pillow that I'd folded several times.
"After nine," he answered.
"That early? Jeez, Luke. I had a rough night. I barely slept a wink," I complained.
I wriggled out of the sleeping bag and pulled on my shorts and boots. I figured it would be cold first thing in the morning, so I grabbed my hoodie for good measure.
"Whatcha cookin'?" I asked as I stepped out from the tent, noticing Luke stirring something around in a pan. It smelled good as it sizzled away.
"Rabbit," Luke replied, while stirring the concoction of meat and rice.
He caught a glimpse of me scrunching my nose in distaste and rolled his eyes.
"You're kind of a house pet, aren't you?" Luke teased, playfully.
"Nothing wrong with preferring home comforts. Shows I'm not feral," I retorted.
The thought of him gutting and skinning the poor thing made me feel queasy.
We ate the food Luke made. I had to try and forget how he obtained it, in order to eat it. I was grateful to have him tagging along. He knew how to survive out in the woods and I'd be hungry as hell if it wasn't for him. I wouldn't last a day.
"We're moving on within the hour. I'd prefer it if we reached the lake by tonight," Luke muttered whilst extinguishing the smoldering embers of the campfire by pissing on it.
We dismantled and gathered up the tent. Luke took over, packing everything away carefully. Apparently, it all went back in a certain way. And according to Luke, my best efforts were considered a hindrance, not helping.
We walked through dense woodland that inclined over the mountain terrain. The journey was grueling and tiresome, causing the muscles in my legs to burn with all this unfamiliar exercise. I knew that I'd ache like crazy the following morning.
After we had gotten over the worst of the climb, we faced the descent down the opposite side. I couldn't see what awaited us down below because of all the trees, but I could hear the distinct sound of rushing water.
"Just down here, can you hear running water?" Luke stopped me, raising his hand.
He stiffened, placing a finger to his lips. Then leaned into me, whispering carefully into my ear. "He's hunting down at the lake, stay close to me."
"Won't he know that we're coming?" I whispered back.
"We're downwind. We'll be fine as long as the wind doesn't change," he replied.
I gripped onto the top of Luke's arm as we made our way down the slope, clutching at tree trunks as we went.
The mixture of earth and stone was loose underfoot. If I wasn't careful, the ground would give way beneath me and I would fall the whole way down.
Luke grabbed me around the waist as I slipped on a loose rock, pulling me back safely.
I managed a breathy, "Thanks," as I panted. My lungs and throat burned with each sharp intake of breath, reminding me how physically unfit I was.
As a rule I hated cardio. I had never met a curvy girl who didn't.
Once we reached the bottom of the valley, I was able to make out the lake. Part of it that didn't look that deep. It looked shallow enough to reach waist height. Not that I wanted to risk going in for a paddle in case the silt at the bottom of the lake bed sucked me under. I could tell where the deepest part was because the color of the water darkened.
Luke tapped me on the shoulder, then pointed downstream. I followed the direction of his finger to where an enormous grizzly bear was perched on top of a giant rock.
It was at the edge of the shallows, hunting. Its strong paws swung fast, slicing through the water and slapping out a large fish onto the embankment.
I watched in awe of the magnificent creature. This really was nature in its rarest form. So, I pulled out my sketch pad and began to capture every detail.
"Is that him?" I asked Luke between shading and sketching the bear.
"In the fur," he replied with an air of amusement.
After I made a rough sketch and added a few background details, I put away my belongings and stood back upright. My forehead creased as I watched the way Luke advanced towards me.
"What's so funny?" I asked, trying to back up whilst frowning with confusion.
"This!" His husky voice screamed mischief as he grabbed me by my shoulders, crashing his lips onto mine.
I slapped hard at his chest, struggling to get out of his vice-like grip. He was making a meal of this, trying to draw as much attention to us as possible.
"Luke, get off me!" I squealed against his wet lips.
He pulled away with a satisfied smirk on his face, leaving me choking for air.
"Mmm, you taste of honey and vanilla." He licked his lips then glanced downstream at Sam. The bear had stopped fishing and was standing on his hind legs, looking straight at us. "That should do it," he spoke with smug satisfaction. "You don't have to thank me, princess." He turned towards Sam, beckoning him over with a goofy wave.
I stood rooted to the spot in shock as he antagonized Sam. How on earth did that help the situation? But as soon as the thought entered my brain, an almighty roar erupted from Sam and reverberated all around the mountain side.
Sam dropped onto all fours and began running full pelt towards Luke. Luke's shift was instantaneous, bursting free of his clothing and bolting straight towards Sam. I screamed in horror at the sight of the two grizzly bears clashing together in a gruesome battle.
"Stop it!" I screamed, whilst waving my arms about.
I could only look on, helpless and horrified as they wrestled around, biting and clawing at each other. They landed in the swallows with a huge splash, sending water flying up into the air and soaking me through to the skin. I stood there gasping, drenched through and freezing cold.
My ear-splitting scream could have shattered glass. It drowned out the sound of the battling bears, causing them to stop and look over in my direction. Sam's paw stilled over Luke's muzzle like a freeze-frame.
I held both my arms out at either side of me and shook the excess water off them, staring straight ahead with a murderous glare.
"Change back!" I seethed.
I was so pissed off that I could've committed a felony.
As I wrung the water out of my hair, a cold breeze swept across me, causing me to tremble. I instinctively wrapped my arms around myself, rubbing my palms along the tops of my arms in an attempt to keep warm.
Moments later I heard a snapping of bones. Then Sam and Luke were transformed back to their human forms and were each pulling on a pair of shorts.
"Helen," Sam called out.
My teeth chattered as I spoke, "What?" I snarled, casting daggers at both of them. "Look at me, I'm soaking wet!"
Sam rushed towards me, pulling me into his arms and rubbed his warm hands up and down my cold, wet skin in an attempt to warm me up.
"Luke, she's freezing," he told him.
Luke sprinted over to where he dropped his rucksack and pulled out a fleece blanket. He walked over towards me and threw it across my shoulders.
"Thanks," I muttered gratefully.
"What was that all about, just now?" Sam asked, scowling at Luke.
Luke shifted nervously on his feet and scratched the back of his neck.
"It worked though, didn't it? You confronted me this time. You didn't run off on me, like you did yesterday," Luke mentioned, sheepishly.
Sam shot him the stink-eye. " You were touching my girl. How did you expect me to react?"
Luke shrugged. "I don't see any markings on her, Sam. So the way I see it, she ain't yours yet," Luke goaded a reaction from his friend.
I could tell that it was meant as a harmless comment, one between two best friends.
Sam tensed. "It's complicated, Luke." He shook his head, dropping his gaze to the ground.
"Is it?" Luke challenged. "Seems pretty straightforward to me," he added, clutching his chin in an observational pose as he glance between us, throwing Sam a subtle hint.
Sam let out a forced breath. "She doesn't feel it, Luke. She's human. She has a choice and I'm not it."
Mine and Sam's eyes met once he finished that statement. I leaned back, hurt by his words.
"I never said that," I defended myself.
Sam's eyes twitched as he contemplated my words. "But you said..."
I cut him off before he got a chance to finish, "I didn't mean it though, Sam. I take it all back. I'm not sorry that it happened. After you left, I spoke to Jack. He understands and he's sorry, too."
Sam's anguished expression relaxed into one of relief and he exhaled a sigh, pulling me into a warm embrace. He laid his chin on my head as he stroked his fingers through my damp hair. His rapid heartbeat began slowing down to a more steady and relaxed pace as we held each other. I closed my eyes, pressing my nose against his chest and inhaled a lungful of his unique scent.
"While you two are making up, I'll set up camp." Luke offered. "Helen, why don't you ask Sam to take you to the falls?" he suggested, adding a cheeky wink.
I glanced up at Sam who was smirking back at Luke. I got a feeling they were sharing a personal joke of some sort.
"What was all that about?" I asked Sam while Luke was distracted.
Sam raised his brows. "You'll see. Take off those wet clothes and leave your underwear on. No one will see if you keep the blanket around you. We're going swimming so you won't need clothes," he explained.
Luke lifted his gaze from where he was crouching over his rucksack and held out his hand. "Give them to me and I'll dry them by the fire as soon as I get it going."
"Hold the blanket up for me," I asked Sam. "You're not getting a strip show," I told them both.
Sam rolled his eyes and held the blanket up as a changing screen. I quickly stepped out of everything and tossed it all over to Luke. Then I wrapped the blanket around my voluptuous body like a wrap around dress.
Sam's sexy chuckle sounded as dirty as his thoughts. "I've seen you naked before. You haven't gone all shy on me, have you?"
I shook my head. "No. But Luke hasn't seen me naked and I'm not just gonna strip in front of him. I know I didn't give you the best impression of me, yesterday, but I want you to know that I don't usually sleep with a guy that I've only just met. You must think that I'm such a slut," I finished, awkwardly.
"Not at all." Sam grabbed hold of my hand, entwining our fingers together as we walked.
"I want us to be together, Helen. Someday, I want us to start a family of our own," Sam spoke sincerely. "So, you know my secret?" He cringed as he brought it up.
I gave his fingers a gentle squeeze. "Yeah, Luke told me last night, but I don't care, Sam. It doesn't matter to me. I still want to be with you, no matter what," I replied honestly.
Sam chewed on his bottom lip as he smiled. What I said had pleased him and hopefully erased that awful argument we had in my bedroom. We walked for around half an hour along the lake before I heard the sound of fast, rushing water. Sam lead me to the waterfall that Luke had mentioned, earlier. Now I know why they called it 'The Falls'. The water appeared from the top of the mountainside and cascaded along the rockface, bouncing off the uneven surfaces in a cloud of mist. Where the lake and the falls merged, the water appeared white where it churned, giving the appearance of a great big bubble bath.
"Oh my God, Sam, it's beautiful here. You're so lucky to have grown up in a place like this. I've only ever known the city." I gushed with appreciation.
I would never have thought in a million years that I would be standing amongst nature, drinking in the view like this. I wasn't an outdoorsy kind of girl. I was the sort of girl who partied at the weekend and went shopping at the mall with my girlfriends. Sam had me rethinking my whole life over.
A few days ago, I was hating the idea of having to come out here and visit Mom, but now I didn't want to have to go back to campus.
The idea of going back to school and spending a few months apart from Sam, made my stomach turn. I knew by the end of spring break it was going to be hard to say goodbye for a while. Two measly weeks wasn't going to be long enough.
"Penny for your thoughts, babe?" Sam asked, considerately.
I stared straight ahead as we walked. I wasn't aware that I was looking sad, but Sam must've picked up on something to make him ask.
"Just thinking, maybe I don't really want to go back after spring break, but I really need my art degree if I want to make it as an illustrator," I offloaded a little.
Sam nodded and exhaled a gentle sigh. "You should stay in college. I can always come and stay with you whenever I can. We can make it work, Helen. Besides, it's only for a couple of months, then after that I want you to move in with me," he offered, much to my surprise.
"Seriously?" I asked, shocked by his sudden proposition.
"Yeah, why not? I could get used to waking up to that amazing, hot body every morning," he replied, eyeing me lustfully.
The sexy storm in his eyes told me that he was thinking dirty thoughts.
We stopped right alongside the waterfall and Sam pulled down his shorts, letting his semi-hard cock swing free. The minute it hit the cool, fresh air it awakened, standing to full attention. I watched with voyeuristic eyes as he dove into the deep water with a splash. I flinched back out of the way, so as not to be saturated once again. A few seconds later he resurfaced, clearing his vision and shaking the water from his dark, tousled hair.
"Come on in," he coaxed, holding out his hand.
"How deep is it?" I asked, cringing.
I wasn't a confident swimmer. The thought of not being able to touch the bottom was daunting, but then again, did I really want to touch the slimy bottom of the lake with my bare feet? I don't think so, I shuddered at what I might find.
"Don't worry about it, I've got you," he reassured, swimming over to the embankment and holding his arms outstretched to catch me.
"I'll just paddle in the shallows," I mentioned, trying to get out of it.
Sam shot me a stern look, displeased of my lack of trust.
"Jump and I'll catch you," he urged, keeping his arms outstretched and curling his fingers.
I hesitated, mindfully conscious of my weight. I removed the blanket, screwing it up into a ball and placing it at a safe distance from the water's edge. I wasn't by no means fat, but my womanly curves meant that my tummy was slightly rounded and not completely flat. Sam saw me trying my best to cover myself and frowned.
"What are you doing?" He asked, questioningly.
"I don't want to jump, Sam. I'll create a huge splash," I grumbled.
His expression grew serious, now that he knew what was wrong. "You're beautiful, Helen. And I've seen you in less." He noticed me looking around and added, "Nobody is here, I promise. Now get that sexy ass in here, right now." He pointed downward.
I still had my sky-blue, lacy underwear on from the day before. So in a way, I was glad for the opportunity to refresh myself in the water, having not been able to shower. I dipped my foot in to test the temperature. It wasn't as cold as I thought it was going to be, so I braced myself, holding my nose and plunged right in. Sam immediately caught me and pulled me into his waiting arms. His legs bumped against mine as he kept us afloat by treading water.
My wrists crossed at the back of his head and my thighs gripped his hips, crossing my ankles behind him. Our noses nudged and our lips were only inches apart. His brows bunched slightly, his silvery eyes holding so much emotion. I could see that there was so much that he wanted to say but our time was short. Now wasn't the moment for deep and meaningful conversation. This moment was about being young and living in the now. The world and its problems could wait until tomorrow. Right now we just wanted to enjoy time with each other.
Sam's fingers snaked around my back and I felt him tug on the clasp of my bra. The lace pulled tight under my breasts, then fell loose, allowing my assets to spring free. He removed the soaked undergarment and tossed it onto the embankment. His wet, parted lips beckoned for mine and I answered, tasting his mouth with my tongue. I felt him slide two fingers underneath the scrap of lace that covered my center. Just as my tongue toyed with his, his fingers teased me right back, stroking along my slit, delving deeper and deeper, until he reached my aching clit with the pad of his finger.
I sucked his tongue into my mouth while I rode myself on his hand. I reared my head back, letting out a grateful moan. Sam growled, pushing aside a scrap of lace and pulling me down onto his engorged cock. I cried out as he speared into me, forcefully.
He held me like that, resting his forehead on mine, our breathing was matched, our pants rough and ragged. He palmed my thighs, sliding the curve of my ass before grasping both cheeks with possessive force. He began moving me up and down on his thick meat, fucking me slowly, firmly, making me appreciate every inch of him. My thighs tightened, matching his rhythm, the both of us panting hard as we fucked in the turbulent water.
"Hold still for me," Sam whispered, his husky voice vibrated against my lips.
He started to swim to the edge of the water, still sheathed deep inside my loins. Once we reached the shallows, the water rushed from our bodies, allowing the cool air to flow around our heated skin.
Sam carried me back onto dry land and lay me down on the firm, wet sand. There he started to move his hips in slow, punishing circles. My fingers dug into his shoulders, loving every powerful stroke he delivered. Nobody had ever made love to me like this before. Stars burst behind my eyelids.
"My woman," Sam whispered against my lips as he rocked into me. "So beautiful."
The urgency in Sam's thrusts intensified. The faster we fucked, the more vocal we became. "Oh God, Sam," I cried as the pressure began to build at the bottom of my stomach, fluttering there.
"Don't come yet," he commanded as he withdrew himself.
I whimpered, at the absence of his cock, feeling empty and needing more.
"On your knees," he ordered, to which I obeyed immediately.
I rolled over onto all fours and he pushed my head down so that my ass was high in the air. I felt his hot breath at my folds and then the delicious feel of his wet tongue spearing into me, praising my legs further apart, his mouth devouring my pussy mercilessly. Just as I recovered the build of my orgasm, he stopped again, snatching it from me a second time.
"Please, Sam," I begged, needing the pleasure of my release.
His tongue speared into me, stroking my inner walls, the intense sensation almost had me exploding straight into his mouth. He pulled back, growling his delight.
"Now you taste ready. I want you to rest your chin on your hands," he instructed. "You need to stay open for me to mount you. My bear is going to take over and I won't be able to go easy on you, so I need you to relax," he explained saving the best for last. "I need to bit you, babe. You need to tell me whether you want this. Use your words, love."
I didn't care what he was saying, all I wanted was him to push inside me and finish me off.
"Yes, please. Do it," I replied in a throaty moan.
He positioned himself at my entrance and I grit my teeth as he sheathed himself inside me once more. He began thrusting gently at first, coaxing breathy moans from me. As his pace quickened, his fingers gripped the sides of my hips, grunting out his pleasure with each deep thrust.
He pushed my head back down before pounding into me harder, my breasts swayed wildly as he drilled into me with his monstrous cock. I heard him growling with pleasure, his bear must have taken over in his head. Curiosity got the better of me and I craned my head around to see for myself. Thankfully he still looked humanoid in appearance, it was just a dusting of fur that had sprouted across his skin, nothing more. Sam still looked very much like Sam, just hairier.
He began to pound me violently, his balls slapped against my folds and my teeth rattled as he swung his hips wide and wild. We both cried out without shame, the sounds of pure erotic noises echoed all over the mountains for all to hear.
Even though I expected to be bitten, I wasn't prepared for what was to come next. Just as we both hit our peak in unison, I felt the painful, piercing of sharp teeth tearing through the flesh of my neck. Agony mixed with pleasure. My walls clamped around his length, milking him of the seed that he was pouring into me.
He held me around the waist, continuing to bite down, staking his claim. That one split-second of pain had gone and had been replaced with a second earth shattering orgasm that followed the first. I didn't give a fuck that I skipped my pill this morning. It was back in my room, no good to me there.
I screamed out with pleasure, my legs shaking, threatening to give way beneath me. I slumped forward, exhausted and gasping for air. Sam's muscular arm curled around me, holding me steady. My body was spent and I could have drifted off into the most blissful sleep. My eyes grew heavy, Lulled by the soothing sound of Sam's voice, easing me into contentment.
"Sleep, Helen. You're mine now. No one will ever keep us apart," Sam vowed.