❝I felt so much that I started to feel nothing.❞
I sob and I cry, holding back nothing while clutching heavily on to Noah’s body, a part of me still hoping that those eyes would refocus and shine with an innocent shyness, not the dullness that would forever haunt me.
Hopelessness grips at my heart, capturing it in a cage of despair and fear as tears slid down my cheeks like a river’s current. I hiccup and choke, rocking back and forth and pressing Noah closer to my chest. He lays limp with his arms by his side, cold to the touch, blood coating the side of his face and around the wound; eyes staring blankly upwards the grey sky.
The sound of the house door swinging open echoes in the dead silence but I pay no mind to it, I look down at my hand that hovers beside his pale cheek, the color slowly draining from his face and ice beginning to replace it. My hand trembles and quakes with emotions that coursed through me like a faucet; my fingertips grazing over his skin with the thought that this was repeating again. The arrow went straight through his heart, piercing it from behind and exiting through the front, that’s what it felt like for me, an agonizing pain that I couldn’t describe stabbing my heart. It hurt so much.
"Oh my, goddess. . .”
More tears slip down my face as I stare into his eyes that will never look again, gritting my teeth, I force my hand to close his eyes, his facial features looking nothing but peaceful now. The frigid air does nothing to freeze my heart back together, in pieces they are, a coldness settles in that numbs me to the core. I bend over, pressing my face into his neck where the tears continue to fall and slide down his neck and drop into the snow.
It should have been me. It should have been me, it should have been me. It should have been me lying in my own blood, gasping to stay alive where I could tell Xavier that I loved him back and that it didn’t matter if Noah failed, it was going to be okay.
I failed to protect someone close to me again, I should have sensed that arrow, I should have pulled him down with me. I should have done a lot of things and here I am, holding a soulless body against my own, once more.
“It should have been me. . .” I choked out, shaking my head and continue to rock his body in my arms.
I inhale his scent, know this would be the final time he would be surrounding me with his calmness and smell.
I shake my head, shaking off the hand that came to rest upon my shoulder, and cling tighter onto Noah. I didn’t want to let him go. The sobs began to build back up, flowing out of my mouth and into the air, drenched with my heartache and sadness, a continuous waterfall dripping from my eyes.
“Well, well, look at what we have here,” a cold voice chord throughout the street.
I lift my head, my eyes drifting upwards to look across the street where a man stalked from the woods that was behind a house off to the side. His eyes glowed red as he stalked forward, my gaze flickering over across the yard where another being stepped out from the shadows of the woods; both illuminating dark intentions.
As I stared into their eyes, flashes of familiarity shocked its way into my veins.
The one with dirty blonde locks steps closer, from on the other side of the street, his steps crunch in the snow. Those ruby red eyes stare me down then flicker down to Noah in my arms—I tighten my grip on him— a smirk making his way on his lips.
“I see, Eleanor missed. That’s a first,” he clicks his tongue, that smirk widening as he locks gazes with me again, “But there won’t be the next time.”
His words cause everything in me to freeze, the numbness that once filled my system, slowly ebbed away; firing up with a newfound energy.
“Boss said you’ll be a handful but I think we got this,” the one with black tresses spoke confidently, “It won’t be long before you join your little wolf friend in mutt heaven.”
The beast in me was growling viciously, snarling and moving about within my head, sending heat from the top of my head to the rest of my body. My limbs began to shake, vibrating throughout me, an ache beginning to throb in my gums along with my nails.
My senses picked up multiple presences nearby that caused the hair on my hair to stand further at attention, the sound of low growls ripping through the air with the lingering smell of death. My gaze lifts lock gazes with a dozen red eyes that blanket themselves in the darkness of the trees.
“Abigail. . .” Sam voices, tone filled with uncertainty.
Both vampires grin, their fangs flashing dangerously, intent to bring a world of pain. Their postures gave off they were ready to charge, resting their weight on the tips of their toes in a crouched position.
“I know,” I whisper, turning away and looking at Noah’s ash-whiten face.
I brush his bangs away and take in his peaceful expression before finally placing him down in the snow and stand to my feet. I face Sam and stare her dead on, her face revealing everything from her emotions to how she felt about everything.
“Mind-link Xavier or anyone who is close enough.”
“They won’t make it in time,” one calls out from behind me, causing my hands to clench together, the nails digging into my palm. “This will be over before you know it.”
I give her a pointed look, “Do it.”
She quickly nods, eyes flickering behind me. “I’ll be back,” she mutters before rushing inside the house.
The sound of the door shutting echoed as I stood alone in front of the porch steps, ever so slowly, I turned and faced danger in the eye.
The man with dirty blonde hair, shifted forward, arms angled from his body, eager to pounce. The growls behind him, backing up his intentions.
“Shall we dance?”
Closing my eyes, I called onto the rage that laid beneath the neutral ground that was keeping me from losing my mind, it boiled over, increasing my body heat and the shaking that had died down to a trembling as if an earthquake was rocking through me. Within my mind’s eye, faint images of Mom and Noah mingle together, their smiling faces haunting me: snapping something within me.
A faint whooshing sound could be heard with the sound of snow kicking up, my eyes snapped open to a clearer vision of the world. I wasn’t surprised to see one of the vamps had moved and was a few feet away from me, reflexes had me ducking the swipe of a hand and darting to the side and rolling in the snow.
My top lip curls up in a snarl, my gums aching and hands digging into the earth underneath the white sheet on the ground. The vampire whips around towards me, hissing, eyes glowing a brighter red, resembling blood that would soon be spilled everywhere.
Another hiss past his clenched teeth, crouching lower, muscles taut and ready to spring; the growls that echoed in my brain slowly rumbled from my chest, growing in volume.
He suddenly lunged towards me and I met him halfway.
Everyone stood around, lingering behind trees, waiting for the threat to come barreling over the borders. My paws sunk deeper into the snow, the side of my body rubbing against the bark of the tree, the beast growling in my head, keen eyes shifting around everything that swayed or moved.
My chest vibrated with a growl when someone tapped on the mental wall I’ve put up.
‘I need you to calm down,’ Dad’s growled voice bounced in my head.
My eyes caught his darken gaze from across the area, his eyes flashing with a warning.
‘I can’t, he’s anxious about Abigail.’ I mind-link him back, ’He was the same way when she was tak—′
“They’re here,” Elijah speaks, breaking off my sentence and causing my eyes to flit over towards him.
He steps out from the shadows the leaves cast down upon us, his shoes crunching the ice beneath his weight, half of his face covered in the shadows but his eyes glowing brightly—waiting.
Everyone crouched lower in their positions, the air thick with tension. That’s when the first wolf came darting through and over the borderline, it’s milky red eyes focused forward and set with a goal.
Elijah was the first to move, blurring forward and tackling the wolf to the ground, his arms locking around the neck; causing its body to squirm in his hold, kicking up snow and dirt. Elijah’s eyes began to bleed red, blankly looking down at the wolf in his arms, with a quick jerk to the side, a snap echoed— the wolf instantly goes limp.
We all stare as he stands to his feet, dropping the body as if what he did was nothing. The thumping of paws growing closer to where we were prepared us for the dozen of wolves that barrelled towards us, everyone jumped out from their hiding places, knocking down rogues in their paths, instantly snapping their necks.
More began to pour into our territory, bypassing the warriors that were already head on in a brawl, Dad and I jump out from the farther trees angled a little back, jumping on the back of rogue that was going to pass. We tumble to the ground, both snapping at anything our jaws could reach, drawing blood that blends with the metallic smell the area starts to give off. The rogue hind legs plant themselves on my underbelly, kicking me off, I roll to a stop, quickly pushing myself up with a deep growl; crouching.
My paws overlap as we circle one another, this wolf’s eyes were glowing with bloodlust, its desire to rip me apart strongly showing how it growled, saliva dripping from the sides of its mouth and its black lips curling further back.
Without hesitation, it lunged for me, snapping its jaw. I met it halfway, barely dodging its claws before my mouth locked around the side of its neck, mounting it as the wolf began to struggle. I didn’t waste a second longer, my jaw crunching down harder on its neck bone before sharply whipping my head to the side. The rogue fell limp beneath me.
I stepped back and cast my eyes around the wrestling wolves in time to see Mason’s wolf get tackled by two rogues, their mouths locking around his arm and leg snapping the bones; he howls in pain, straining to kick them away. Growling, I dart in their direction, weaving between moving bodies, skidding in the snow beside and yanking both wolves off him by the scruffs of their necks.
With quick fluid movements, they were both dead a few feet away, I turn my attention back to Mason was growling and bleeding on the forest floor.
‘You okay?’ I ask him, looking him over, putting our differences aside. His wolf’s head bobs up and down, heaving deep breathes.
‘I’ll be alright,’ he grits outs.
I wheel around in time to see Elijah chasing after a few wolves that make it past the formation when a sudden sharp pain strikes my heart and snap within the packs’ link causing me to freeze. My mind fills with howls of agony, crying out in despair and heartache.
My eyes flicker around all the wolves anxiously, and with growing fear when I see no bodies of our people laying on the ground. Dad’s whimper fills my mind as I only think of the worst.
‘Who was i—’ I start to think but was abrupt cuts off.
‘Xavier, we need help!’ Samantha’s voice zaps into my mind.
‘What’s going on?’ I start to ask, already making my way away from the border and back to town.
My paws pound against the ground, gaining speed as my heart thumps with fear at the thought of Abigail hurt.
‘They came out of nowhere, we didn’t see it coming, oh god. .’ she suddenly breaks off causing me to push harder, following the trail back to town.
I feel her come back, her presence in the back of my mind, bringing the slightest relief that quickly shatters.
My steps falter before picking up pushing myself like I’ve never done before, the trees blurring past me, my paws kicking up dirt and snow behind me, weaving through obstacles. I didn’t know how fast I was going but I was fast enough to see the outline of Elijah’s form, his overly sweet smell left in his wake.
We both take sharp turns and run within the town’s tree-line, racing to a certain house. Finally, we brake through the forest line, to the front of Abigail’s house, skidding to a swift stop. I take in the sight of me with wide eyes, hesitant to take steps forward before shifting back, Elijah looks on with a fraction of his eyes widen but everything else blank.
Off to the side of the house, Sam was leaning on the porch’ foundation, battered with multiple bruises and blood gushing from her leg. She sees my look and shakes her head with pinched lips, I look away and stop short at the body that laid in front of the steps, unmoving. There seemed to be an arrow sticking from his chest, dried blood paths from his mouth and down his chin.
I grit my teeth.
“Abigail. .” Elijah whispers beside me, snapping my attention to him and following his gaze.
She was crouched over a moving form that struggled beneath her, fingers clenched in the material of her shirt, tugging and trying to pull her away, but with a crunch, the arms fall limp. Silence followed as we all looked on, Abigail backing away from the body and slowly turning around; she looked as if she fought with a bear and bathed in its blood, scratches littered her arms and face, red coating her whole mouth but the tears that started to leak and create a clear path down her cheeks broke me.
Her eyes stayed locked with mine, body trembling. Her eyes cut away from mine and snap close, her hands coming up to press the palms against her eyes and she releases a heart-gutting wail. Elijah and I moved at the same time when she started to pull at her hair, the tears rolling faster, he was faster as he made it to her first and immediately took her into his arms and held her tightly as she cried.
She clings onto him, burying her face in his chest, screaming her pain out. I felt it rather than having to see it for myself, my heart squeezes in my chest to the point where I was breathless, I lowered myself to my knees; my own eyes tearing up her emotions increasing when I placed my hand on her back.
She shuddered violently, shaking her head as her red fingers clenched tighter onto Elijah’s shirt.
“He’s gone! He’s gone! He’s gone!” she repeated over and over, Elijah starting to rock her. “There’s nothing I could have done to save him,” she whimpers, curling further into the vamp’s chest, ebbing away from reality.
“It’s my fault.”
I cast a glance over my shoulder, Stella in the doorway of the house, a hand over her mouth as she held a crying London. Tears swimming in her eyes as I move my gaze away and stared back at Noah’s body, pale and translucent, features relaxed and at peace.