Untamed Soul by XxBloodStarsinBlackSkyxX

Category:Maximum Ride
Genre:Adventure, Romance
Published:2008-12-22 13:09:03
Updated:2009-01-25 10:13:33
Packaged:2021-04-04 15:25:25
Summary:More than one thousand years into the future, Itex disappeared during the apocalypse and the world is at peace, for now. One girl believes she is alone but when you live in a world of freaks, is it possible to be completly alone? full summary inside. AU

Table of Contents

1. Prologue
2. Chapter 1
3. Chapter 2
4. Chapter 3
5. Chapter 4
6. Chapter 5
7. Chapter 6
8. Chapter 7
9. Chapter 8
10. Chapter 9
11. Chapter 10
12. Chapter 11
13. Chapter 12
14. Chapter 13
15. Chapter 14
16. Chapter 15
17. Epilogue

1. Prologue

Hey everyone. Twilightwing is back! *cheers* and i'm actually going to finish a story! *more cheers* lol.

This one came to me with the help of one of my friends from a random story we wrote on AIM. i just added a ton of stuff but she helped me figure out one of the story's major plot lines.

I already have all of this typed, so the faster you review, the faster you get it. It's about 18 chapters, and it has a sequel in progress, and i have the third story already in mind.

I own the plot, all the characters, the people, the places, the world everything! so i can easily say that i rule a world! yay!

NOTE: none of the flock are in this story, even though i was inspired by some of them for some of my characters.

Summary: Itex was destroyed thousands of years ago along with the world we know and love. Now, in the world of Yer, hybrids and mutants of all sorts rule the land and sea. Only one can rule the skies: Kaltezira. Having grown up with a group of people that seem to be worlds apart from her, she believes she is alone. Roaming the skies of Yer, she searches for a place she belongs, a place she calls home. When she finds such a place, it turns out that 'home' might not be as good as it seems.

So let the story begin! enjoy!

Prologue: Why Am I Different? Why Am I Alone?

Supposedly, it was my eleventh birthday. We never had a very good system of telling time, or knowing dates, in the middle of the forest. Never to have an age I could count on all ten fingers now. I sat up at my old war post, basically, a wooden platform at the top of a tree where I could be alone. No one, besides me and Balvor, when he was really motivated to climb all the way up here, could get up here.

Balvor was the only parental figure in my life. He was the father I knew I would never know. When I was younger, I had wished that he was my father. Then I was reminded that we looked nothing alike, his blond hair hung into his eyes that I don't know the color of while my brown hair went in a hundred directions, hung to my shoulders, and made my hazel eyes blend in. Only our quickness, agility, and height kept my hopes up that maybe, just maybe, I looked more like my mother and he was my father. But today, I wasn't pondering the possibility that Balvor, the leader of the Rez people, was my father. I was thinking about something a bit more important.

Today I had realized that I was taller than all of my friends, if you would call them that. I prefer to call them companions. I was a good two inches than all of the fully grown Rez people. Now I had started to notice the differences between me and the people I had grown up with. While they were forever frozen at five feet tall, I was still growing. My brown, dry, knotted, hair, looked like dirt compared to the brilliant fire red hair growing from their scalps. Their eyes looked as if a fire burned behind the irises and could easily make my hazel eyes look plain and simple. Their ability to burn things by just thinking of it, made them outshine me like a weak flame being compared to the sun.

I was an outcast in this world of Yer, the planet of freaks. I didn't belong here, with the Rez people that is. How I got here I had no idea. Maybe, I was unwanted. Or I was just some sort of experiment, something created to see how I would come out, how long I would live. Something made me more of an outcast than anything. They were the reason I was the only person, Balvor excluded, who could get up here. My wings, the wings that rested upon my back, pushed through the slits in my shirt Balvor had cut. I loved my wings; there was no doubt in that. They were as black as the darkest night with tips that looked like each feather had been dipped in blood. The red was deeper than the red of the hair or the eyes of the Rez people; you could only cut yourself and gaze at the blood that dripped from the wound to see such a red.

"Hey, Kalte," Balvor said as he pulled himself up onto the branch below me.

"Hey, Balvor," I replied, not taking my eyes off the horizon.

"So, you're eleven now." I rolled my eyes.

"Yeah, and it could be the last birthday I ever have. No one knows when I'm gonna just die," I replied, sarcasm dripping from my words. I could drop dead any second for all they knew.

"I don't think that's gonna happen," Balvor answered, pulling himself up onto the platform and sitting next to me. He obviously knew something I didn't, but I wasn't going to press the issue. For all I know, if I asked, he would tell me that I was going to die tomorrow.

"No one's holding you here, Kalte," he said, catching my gaze on the horizon. I looked at him and tilted my head like a confused dog. "You can always just go. No one's going to stop you."

"I'm not ready to leave yet," I said, returning my gaze to the horizon. "I want to wait until my chances of dying in the real world are almost zero." I had been learning how to use a bow and arrow and to fight, like with my hands, and I was getting really good. Balvor chuckled and nodded.

"Well, there is, believe it or not, a good reason that I joined you up here," he replied.

"Really?" I asked, surprised.

"Yes, really," he answered. He reached his hand into his pocket and pulled something out. The strange square shaped thing was smaller than my hand, light blue in color with a whitish circle under a black square.

"What is it?" I asked, taking it from his hands and examining it in my own.

"It doesn't really have a name, but it plays music. It's from the time of the early humans, the ones without mutations, before our world began," Balvor explained. "No one else really had a use for it, so I figured you might want it. It's your birthday, you deserve something for putting up with everyone here for eleven years." I laughed at the last part. Balvor smiled down at me, gave me a hug, and then began to climb down the tree again.

"Thanks, Balvor," I said, fiddling with the music thing.

"Happy birthday, Kalte," he replied. And as he descended the tree, disappearing from my view, I thought I saw his eyes, and I thought they were hazel.

Reviews are my best friends. :)

2. Chapter 1

This chapter is dedicated to nathan-p, who gave me my first review for this story and it was amazing! it made me feel all happy in side! yay! *tosses nathan-p a cookie*

nathan-p: this story was not intended to be a future fic for Maximum Ride, but it actually did come out that way. and don't worry, everything gets much better after this. especially in chapter 4, the shortest chapter. :)

I own everything. yay. i rule a world. lol.

That music playing thing? its my ipod. a light blue 3rd generation ipod nano. :) my music inspired me for a lot of this story. you'll see that in later chapters.

Summary:Itex was destroyed thousands of years ago along with the world we know and love. Now, in the world of Yer, hybrids and mutants of all sorts rule the land and sea. Only one can rule the skies: Kaltezira. Having grown up with a group of people that seem to be worlds apart from her, she believes she is alone. Roaming the skies of Yer, she searches for a place she belongs, a place she calls home. When she finds such a place, it turns out that 'home' might not be as good as it seems.

on with the story! enjoy people!

Chapter One: My Domain

In this crazy world where freaks rule, I am the only outsider. Every city, every town, I face a new breed of freak, but none like me. This was the world of Yer, the world of freaks where every breed of freak owns part of the world. I own the only place no one can touch, the sky. The sky is my domain, Kalte's world, no one else's. My life has been a constant downhill dive, at no point has it ever been positive, just depressing and a never ending feeling of loneliness.

I had run from the Rez three years ago, the day I turned fourteen, or the day Balvor guessed I turned fourteen. That was also the day I stopped growing, a giant over the Rez at five foot eight. They had finally driven me crazy, their constant happiness, and their shortness. They were like annoying ten year olds you could never get rid of. But they were still the only 'friends' I had.

I had just woken up that morning and decided that today was the day I was leaving. I grabbed the only thing I really owned in my life, the music player that never died Balvor had given me for my eleventh birthday, and ran. I ran down the narrow streets of the village, everyone watching me as I passed. When I passed Balvor, spreading my wings and preparing to take off, he didn't look the least bit surprised. And I saw his eyes again. They were hazel, the same hazel that I saw in the shard of glass I called a mirror every night. I didn't bother to stop and ask him the question that had been in the back of my mind for as long as I could remember: was he my father? I just kept running and let my wings carry me as far away from this place as they could. I haven't seen the Rez village ever since.

I've had my share of experience with other people in these three years of being alone. I explored the world, meeting every group of people, every type of mutant, trying to find a place I could belong. With every group of people I've found besides the Rez, the Czem, Liyorz, and the Syollx, I have never felt at home. Well, the Syollx don't really count because I didn't really meet them. It's kind of impossible to get to their city since it's underwater. I think it's pretty cool, but the fact that I couldn't get there kind of proved that I wasn't going to feel at home there.

I had lived with the Czem people for a while, long enough to understand them. I thought for a bit, that that might actually be the place I thought was my home. But I still felt like a total outcast living among a group of, basically, people made from stone and just moved on. That was about a year ago I left them after staying for at least two months.

I found the Liyorz accidently. They are a wondering tribe of people the move within their own territory. They were an extremely happy bunch, up to a point where it was extremely creepy, and claimed to be able to control light. I think they were a bit crazy. It was that reason I left almost as soon as I had arrived. I lived in the woods for a majority of the time, actually preferring the silence and lack of company at times. But that is what my best friend, the music playing thing that never dies, is there, to fill the silence.

Memories, so peaceful, so helpful in passing the eventless days. I was flying along the border of the Liyorz and Czem territories, knowing it would take me closer to the Rez land than I had been in three years. I knew another land lay beyond the Rez territory, from what the Czem told me. I wanted to find this place, find this land and its people. Maybe it was where I belonged. I was in no man's land now. This land was mine. The sky was mine; I was the only one capable of conquering it.

As I landed for the night, no cities were within a hundred miles, I got that familiar feeling, that feeling I hated but was a large part of me. The feeling of being alone. Knowing that you are the only person left of what ever you are can really bring you down. At least if I wasn't alone, I wouldn't have to be shaken from my sleep by the slightest snapping of a twig.

I had been almost everywhere in this crazy world, except here, I knew that for a fact. There were no cities I knew of here, but this part of the world had to belong to someone, or something. I knew this territory wasn't that large, about a hundred square miles, maybe. I leaned against the bark of a tree, letting myself drift into an uneasy sleep. I always feel asleep with the single positive thought that I had about being alone. I was my own leader. My soul was free, untamed and no one will ever tame it.

Who knows, maybe if you review, you'll get a chapter dedicated to you too! But i won't add the next chapter until i get at least one review! that's not a lot!

3. Chapter 2

This chapter is dedicated to GothRideGrl14 for her review! Speaking of Kalte's wings, I'm going to try and get one of my friends to draw a pic of her since I can't draw to save my life. lol.

The song in this chapter is Everybody by Keith Urban. Yeah, i know its country, but it's actually really good! i recommend listening to it somewhere while you read that part of the chapter, just because. lol.

It's Christmas Eve! Yay! Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays for those who don't celebrate Christmas!

Chapter Two: New Land

Surprisingly, I slept well that night, no stupid animals stepping on twigs to wake me up. I ran my fingers through the tangles of hair I called my own. The dull brown strands of hair hadn't been brushed in at least a year and almost fell to my waist now.

I flew up to the top of the tree and was astounded by what I saw. It was a forest, not like I had seen a forest before, but it was accented with a large waterfall and river. Open plains stretched for miles on end and hundreds of birds flew freely among the trees. On the horizon, I could make out several tall buildings, barely but just enough to tell that they were buildings and not oddly shaped mountains. The buildings looked like they were made of glass, but from twenty miles away, I couldn't really tell. I knew this was the territory that the Czem people spoke of, it fit the description perfectly.

I stood on the branch, one hand pressed against the tree, for the longest time, just taking it all in. I wondered if I should head towards the strange city and risk letting the world know who where I was. If this was the city I belonged in, it was worth having myself exposed to the world. And if it wasn't, I guess I was just going to live alone in the forest for the rest of my days. Jumping from the branch, I unfurled my wings. They caught the air instantly and carried me over the new land for which I had no name.

As I flew, I kept my eyes on the city, watching it grow larger with every down stroke. I also kept my eyes open for anyone, or anything, that was coming towards me. All of the freaks in this crazy world were land based, besides me and the Syollx, the water people that looked more fish than human, but I kept my eyes peeled just in case. I really wanted to know who lived here, if I was really going to belong here or not.

I pulled my best friend, the music playing square thing, out of my pocket and put the headphones in my ears. I had found a song for almost every situation in my life so far. I pressed the button with the side ways triangle on it, and let the music play.

So here you are now, no where to turn

It's just the same old yesterday

Only if this last place, this last group of people, were the last people I would want to live with or they were gone, then I would have no where to go. Everyday was the same for me, a constant quest to find where I belonged and a struggle to make sure I lived to see the next day.

And you made a promise to your self

That you were never gonna be this way

I did remember promising myself that I would try to look on the positive side of things, just to keep myself going, but I had probably broken that promise too many times to count by now.

And the only thing you've ever known is to run

So you keep on driving, faster into the sun

I don't know what the hell 'driving' is, but if it means the same thing as flying, then that makes perfect sense!

But everybody needs somebody sometimes

Yeah, everybody needs somebody sometimes

Amen to that. I hated being alone. If I just had one person, just one, that could relate to me, I would be the happiest person alive.

You don't have to find your own way out

You've got a voice, let it be heard

Just when it feels you're on a dead end road

There's always somewhere left to turn

This was my final turn. If this place didn't work out, I would be stuck on a dead end road and be forced to turn around and go back to where I started. If that happened, the Rez would probably drive me crazy. My sanity's days could possibly be numbered.

So don't give up now, you're so close to a brand new day, yes you are

And if you just can't bare to be alone then I'll stay

Maybe this thing could tell me the future. Maybe I was close to something life changing. I could only hope so.

'Cause everybody needs somebody sometimes

Yeah, everybody needs somebody sometimes

Again, I'm alone. And I hate it with a burning passion. I don't want to be alone anymore. This feeling of loneliness will eventually change me. It would eventually drive me crazy. Maybe to such a level that I would demand Balvor to tell me everything that I know he is hiding. That man has been hiding something for as long as I can remember and I think if I had to go back, it would be time I knew.

Well, maybe you've been too caught up

To see what you've been going through

All that I can say is I'm here now

And everybody needs somebody sometimes, you know they do

Everybody needs somebody sometimes

Everybody needs somebody sometimes

Everybody needs somebody sometimes

Gotta have someone besides you

Gotta have someone besides you

Yes, you do, yes, you do, everybody

Everybody needs somebody sometimes

As the day progressed and the closer I came to the city, the more details of it I saw. There were no walls surrounding the city, a first for me. Every city or village I had ever seen had some sort of wall around it, even if said wall was built from sticks. Who knew, maybe these people were stupid.

I saw all of the buildings now; each one was made of a light colored material, stone most likely. This new place was extremely intriguing, and amazed me in so many ways. If I ever wanted to live somewhere, this would be it.

Soon, I was able to see beyond the city. A forest extended behind it and thinned to reveal untouched beaches and mountains just reaching the sea.

I didn't make it all the way on the first day; I didn't have super speed, though now I wish I did. If I had to guess, I would say I was about half way there. By nightfall, I could see a stone wall that surrounded the great city. So these freaks weren't so stupid after all. I fell asleep that night, excited for probably the first time in my life, and I didn't get that annoying feeling of loneliness for once.

All I want for Christmas is for people to review! If you do, you'll get a virtual cookie and a plushie of one of the characters you will meet in about five chapters!

4. Chapter 3

This chapter is a Christmas present for everyone because my three reviewers are my best friends now. lol. *hugs u guys*

XxSilentMoonAngelxX- The song was Everbody by Keith Urban. And the romance is coming. You just have to wait until chapter eight to get it...hope you guys like a ton of romance...lol. :)

Again, Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone! And on with the story!

PS- This is where things get good!

Chapter Three: Found

A twig snapping the silence shook me from my sleep. Stupid animals, I thought to myself. What does it take to get a good night sleep around here? Whatever, I might as well get going, the sun's almost up. I took off into the dark sky, heading towards the rising sun.

Minutes melted into hours as I flew onward, the music drowning out every thought. Excitement fueled me as I flew approximately ten miles in a little less than two hours. Of course I had no idea if that was really two hours; it could have been ten hours for all I knew.

I landed a ways from the city. The citizens would find it weird that a person just showed up at the gates without emerging from the surrounding forest, wouldn't they? I couldn't make my self look like your average freak, considering my jeans were shredded and my tank top had several holes. Basically I looked like crap, or a person who had been living in the forest for three years. I pulled the headphones out of my ears, wrapped them around the music square after turning it off and returning it to the back pocket of my jeans. I shook my head and let my hair fall so that it covered my wings perfectly as I emerged from the trees.

The gate was unguarded, I couldn't see anyone around. Was the city abandoned? Was my final chance of fitting in somewhere lost forever? If it was lost, I wasn't going to live my life without know who these people were. As I spread my wings and started to fly to the top of the wall, I thought of where I would go after this. I would go back to the people of Rez, Balvor was the closest thing to family I had. Or I would just live in this abandoned city. That would work.

My mind was wiped clean of all thoughts when I landed on the top of the wall. There were people inside these walls. Guards lined the base of the wall, watching the gate I had stood before a mere moments before. The city looked empty and deserted. I saw no grown men, with the exception of the guards, only women and children roaming the streets. By the looks of the place, the heavy guards and such, I assumed this place was in war, with itself or another nation, I didn't know.

The guards on the wall watched me carefully, making sure I wasn't about to drop a bomb onto the city or something. One saw the feathers of my wing through my hair and his eyes widened. He beckoned quickly to the other soldier and pointed to my wing. I watched them, waiting for a reaction. They didn't seemed freaked out, just surprised.

"Do you guys understand me? Or talk at all?" I asked them slowly, hearing my own voice for the first time in a long time. One of them looked clueless, but the other seemed intelligent or like he would actually do something. It was clear who just ate all of the donuts in the break room and who actually did the work. The smart one opened his mouth to say something but was silenced by a silent force. He nodded once and turned back to me.

"Forgive me, princess," he said in perfect English, "but the queen wishes to see you. Now."

"Wait a sec. Back it up. Princess?" I asked him, looking at him like he was crazy. He just laughed at me. How this is funny I don't know. There is no way that I was some sort of princess. I wasn't even one of these people! I looked back over the edge of the wall again and saw something I didn't notice before. Every single one of these people had wings just like mine, only different colors. They weren't afraid of people seeing their wings; they didn't have to hide them. I wasn't alone. I was one of them.

"You humor me, princess," the soldier said, breaking my train of thought. "More time for explanations later, we shouldn't keep the queen waiting." He jumped from the wall, landed at its base, not once using his cream wings I now noticed to slow himself, and glanced up at me. I looked down at him for a moment, and jumped, landing beside him in an instant. Giving me a quick nod, he began to lead me towards the tallest building in the city, no doubt the castle. As we walked though the streets, everyone was watching me. They obviously knew more about my place here than I did. Every person's wings were different, ranging in colors from black to a vibrant purple.

The soldier leading me stopped suddenly, breaking me from my thoughts. We now stood before the doors of the massive castle. Well it didn't really look like a castle, just a really tall building. I would describe it more like a tower. The solider knocked on the door and a quick statement that sounded like a question came from within. I couldn't hear his answer but the doors swung open anyway. I was led into this huge hall with tile floors and a carpet made of an elegant red fabric. Along the walls, enormous painted portraits hung, no doubt past rulers of the city. Each ruler wore long cloaks with slits in the back where their wings were pushed through. Both of their wings were spread, taking up a majority of the picture itself.

I was ripped from my thoughts again as the solider knocked on a door at the end of the hall. No response came from within this time, the door just opened. Another hall lay behind the doors, but there were actual people in this one. A small force of soldiers stood at the base of a small set of stairs and a woman with long brown hair similar to my own just better looking, wearing robes similar to the ones the people were wearing in the portraits, stood at the top of the stairs. The woman smiled at me and I just stood there, having no idea what to do. She descended the small set of stairs with a grace that, to me, did not look human. Her guards moved with her until she waved them off with a quick hand gesture.

"It has been seventeen years too long, my daughter," the queen said as she approached. Okay, so I was seventeen. I had never really known since parts of this world didn't bother to keep track of time in a way I could understand. It could have been three or three hundred years since I left Rez. "Where have you been all this time?"

"I grew up with the Rez people," I told her.

"The Rez?" she asked. I nodded. "The only place I didn't think your father would take you," she said, thinking out loud. "The only place I didn't look."

"What has happened to you?" the queen asked, turning back to me and putting her hands on my shoulders. "You look like you have been living in the forests for years."

"I have been," I replied. "I thought I was alone. I thought there were no others like me."

"There always was one like you around. You were never really alone when you were with the Rez people," she commented.

"What do you mean?"

"Your father brought you to them, but never left you," the queen commented. Maybe sometime soon I would think of her as my mother but I was still trying to take everything in. "Balvor is your father." Say what?! Now that I thought of that, it made sense. I had assumed that he was taller than the rest of the people of Rez because he was their leader, or at least I thought he was. But I looked nothing like him…except for my hazel eyes.

"That would explain a lot," I said, breaking the silence. My mother was now leading me through a hall where large paintings covered the wall, to where I had no idea. "But why would he take me away from here?"

"He was trying to protect you from something," she answered. "Something he knew couldn't be prevented." She stopped in front of the most recent painting, or the painting farthest down the hall. I assumed it was the most recent one.

"Each one of these paintings is that of a prophecy," my mother explained. "Your father made this one. When he found out you were its subject, he took you away from here. I always assumed that he wanted to protect you from it, to prevent his own prophecy from occurring." The painting was clearly me, I knew of no other person with black wings and red wing tips. The majority of the back drop was a starry night sky while an eerie mist lapped at my feet. A small silhouette of a city that looked a lot like this one was at the bottom of the picture. In my hands, I held a sword with a blade the same deep blood red as the tips of my wings.

"What does it mean?" I asked, examining the painting.

"It means that you are the one who shall stop this war. The war we are in with the other avian city. You have some power that will help us win," my mother explained. "Since in the painting, you are portrayed as much larger than you actually are, I assume you have this great power, stronger than any of us can ever imagine. The mist either signifies that you come from an unknown place and appear, like you did today, or that you know nothing of your power or both."

"It is both," I agreed. "I know nothing of any powers I have. Why are you fighting this war?"

"The city of Arez broke free from this city not long before you were taken from here," she explained, not minding the change in subject. "There can not be two dominant cities in one species, so we fight to take control of them once more. Enough of this depressing talk," my mother said, leading me away from the painting and further down the hall. "When was the last time you bathed?"

"Not for a long time. A year maybe," I answered. As I walked away from the painting, I felt like something was being hidden from me, something important.

If you can guess what MaxRide character Balvor reminds me of, you'll get a chapter dedicated to you and a hug! and a plushie of the character you will meet in chapter eight! Reviews make you get to chapter eight faster!

5. Chapter 4

Hope you guys had a great Christmas! I got a ton of CDs so that means new songs! Since this is already finished, I'll just put them at the end in sort of an AN. Not much else to say here because I don't want to give anything away...so I'll just get to the part where I answer reviews.

nathan-p: aren't we all raging fangirls inside? lol. yes, Balvor reminds me of Jeb. I noticed that after I wrote the story too. :)

Remily: thanks a lot. So yeah, Jeb is like Balvor in so many ways except for the fact that he didn't give his daughter away for research...or did he?

Here's chapter four, its the shortest chapter, so maybe I'll put in chapter 5 today if I get enough reviews by the end of the day.

Chapter Four: This Place Isn't as Good as it Seems

No one can really understand how good a shower feels unless they have been living under a rock, which basically, I have been. It had taken me about a good half hour to get all of the leaves out of my hair and to untangle it. It took me another half an hour trying to find something to wear besides long dress like robes. I settled for a purple tank top and a pair of not torn jeans.

"I can see you are going to need more time to adjust to your new standing," a familiar voice said as I stuck the music square, which I managed to keep secret from anyone, in my pocket. I jumped about two feet and turned to find the soldier that had found me on the wall almost a week ago sitting in my window, smiling at me.

"What are you doing here, soldier?" I asked him. He chuckled.

"It is my job to keep you safe, princess," he replied. "I can't really do that when I can't see you."

"Very good point," I told him. "But if you are going to be with me like all the time now I guess, I might as well know your name."

"Our names are a very different thing than names of other species. Our names describe our wings. Our wings describe our personality," he described. "My name in this language is Cloud Filled Sky. In an ancient language, it translates to Ryzarn, but I prefer the name Ryan in this tongue."

"What does my name translate to?" I asked. "My name is too simple to translate into something."

"I call myself Ryan because it is, in a way, a shortened version of my name," Ryan explained. "Kalte is simply the shortened version of your name. It is a very long and complicated name at that, because your name is not normal."

"You still haven't answered my question, Ryan," I told him.

"Your name translates into Blood Stars in Black Sky, or Kaltezira," Ryan told me. I nodded, understanding.

"That name doesn't seem very long and complicated," I replied. Ryan chuckled.

"It is long compared to normal names," he explained. I nodded in understanding again. I was beginning to wonder why he had come. There was no danger here.

"But I did come here for a reason," Ryan said.

"Other than to protect me from these robes that I hope I never have to wear?" I asked, pulling something out of the closet that looked more like a bath robe than something I would wear in public. Ryan chuckled and shook his head as I put the bath robe back in my closet.

"Something much more important than that," he told me. "Before you were born, I was your father's right hand man. I was with him when he painted the prophecy picture only a month before you were born. Now when someone paints one of those kinds of paintings, they are not really themselves, normally. They are possessed. Balvor was different. He was as much himself as he was at any other moment. It was because of this that he realized that the subject of his prophecy would be in great danger," Ryan explained.

"In danger of what?" I asked.

"Your mother is a very power hungry leader. The city of Arez has done nothing wrong; she just wants to rule them. She and her general, Vdzr, have plans to take over the entire world afterwards. Balvor figured that she would want to use the powers of the prophecy's subject to her advantage. There are only two ways to take advantage of a power: to take it from its owner or to force the owner into service to you. Your mother would most likely use the first method."

"And how do that?"

"Basically, you kill the owner," Ryan said. My eyes grew wide with fear.

"Ryan, how the hell do I get out of here?" I demanded, jumping up from the bed which I sat on. So this was why my mother had been so nice to me, so I could gain her trust and then she could slit my throat.

"Let me finish," Ryan said. "Your father knew this, so he created three prophecy paintings. Two of them are the original; the fake one is hanging in the hall. He gave the fake to your mother knowing she would interpret it differently than the original prophecy. Now the painting is not really a fake, since the original prophecy can be seen in it with careful interpretation. He gave one of the originals to the city of Arez when he took you away from here, knowing you were the life he had put in danger. I don't know the location of the second original, but Balvor will. You have to get of here. Go to Balvor, find out what the prophecy really is, and go to the city of Arez," Ryan told me.

"What of the sword?" I asked him. "The sword in the painting."

"Balvor will know where that is," Ryan explained. "He hid it right before he left with you. The longer you stall, the more of a chance that your mother will find out that I told you and of your plans. Now go!" He stepped into the room and I swung my legs over the windowsill.

"I don't how I will ever thank you for this, Ryan," I whispered.

"Defeat your mother and end this war and I will consider myself thanked," he answered. I nodded and jumped out the window, letting my wings carry me into the night.

6. Chapter 5

Sorry about the shortness of the last chapter. I'm posting this because I feel that the last chapter is kind of boring...and I didn't get any reviews...but yeah...just read it...and REVIEW! please?

Chapter Five: Father

I flew as fast as my wings would carry me. Luckily, I had a strong tailwind, so I went twice my usual speed, making it to the land of the Rez by sunrise. The Rez territory also bordered this one so that helped, a lot. It took me about an hour to find the village, considering the fact that I hadn't been there in at least three years, I think that was an accomplishment.

I found my old lookout post first. The Rez considered making me useful during a small war between villages and made me be their lookout. It wasn't a very fun job since a blind beggar could have heard the enemy approach before they were even a hundred feet within the village itself, but I hung out there all the time.

As I silently landed on the platform, my eyes scanned the familiar village. The small brown huts were the same as they were three years ago. I saw several familiar faces among the new ones. The face I was really searching for, the face of my father, was the only one I couldn't see. If he picked today to go on one of his 'important' trips, I would be really mad.

Surprisingly, no one had seen me yet. I was going to have to change that. I let out a loud whistle, probably waking up the entire village and everyone within five miles. As soon as I took off and did a quick circle around the village, they recognized me and started cheering. It was like I was the hero of some war finally coming home. I was surprised that the other city didn't greet me in this way, even if I did jump over their wall.

When I landed, I was immediately tackled by a hundred familiar faces in a death hug. I laughed as I pushed myself up onto my feet. Standing was sort of awkward considering I was a head taller than everyone. I walked through the streets with the entire village at my side, listening to them tell me about everything that I had missed in the past three years. All the while, I was searching, searching for Balvor.

"Ray," I asked my old childhood friend or one of the few Rez here I had grown close to, who stood by my side. "Where is Balvor? I need to speak with him. It's important."

"He is here. Maybe he is still asleep. How could he be?" Ray responded with a laugh. I laughed too, but my mind was panicking. I needed to talk with him. This was life or death here and my life was the life in question. As me and my welcoming committee rounded a corner, I saw him. Balvor was leaning against the side of his house, smoking a pipe in the oldest jeans and t-shirt in the history of forever like he always did. It was like he hadn't moved from the day I ran away. His hair still hung in a way that didn't cover his eyes for once, the hazel orbs staring at the ground.

"I knew it was only a matter of time before you came back, Kalte," Balvor said, not looking up at me, still smoking his pipe.

"You mean it was only a matter of time before I found them," I replied as I walked up to him, "and found out the truth."

"Exactly," Balvor agreed, his eyes, my eyes, looking down at me. "Why don't you come in and we can talk? You can catch up with everybody later."

"We need to make it quick. I have to be somewhere before an army comes after me," I stated, walking into his hut.

"I'm going to assume you didn't tell your mother you left?"

"Not after what Ryan told me," I said. "I wasn't planning on talking to that witch." Balvor chuckled and shut the door behind me as he walked into his hut after me.

"So you talked to Ryan then?" Balvor asked.

"He was the one who found me when I scaled the wall," I explained. Balvor looked at me and laughed. I wasn't a normal person, I wasn't going to go knock on the front door, scaling was just easier. "Why didn't you tell me? I knew you were hiding something, Balvor. You had always hinted that you knew something you didn't want me to know."

"Because I didn't want you to grow up to think that you were going to have to do the things I wrote out," Balvor explained. "I didn't want you to grow up taking advantage of your heritage and your destiny. I wanted you to grow up wild and free, letting no rules hold you back, untamable. I think I did a pretty good job at that." Now it was my turn to laugh. "Now, what did Ryan tell you?"

"He told me about the fake prophecy painting and the two real ones. Mother showed me the 'real' painting and told me what it means. Ryan told me that my mother wants to…kill me." I said, choking on the last words.

"Exactly what I am trying to protect you from," Balvor said, wrapping his arms around me and pulling me into a somewhat awkward hug. I think I was as close to crying as I ever was in my entire life. And I knew for a fact that I had never cried, ever. "And you are wondering where the second original painting is because you know that the first is in Arez. You are also wondering where the sword is, am I right?" I nodded slowly.

"The original painting is in the hall, the only place Itrantia wouldn't think to look," Balvor told me. I knew by the way he said it that he wanted me to figure it out. "The sword is there too."

"Will you tell me anything else?" I asked.

"No, you have to figure it out for yourself. Now listen to me, Kaltezira," Balvor said, using my full name. "You need to go to Zlhorv, find the original prophecy and with it the sword, and go to Arez before your mother gets to you." He hugged me again and then pushed me toward the door.

"Thank you, Father," I said, glancing back at him when I reach the door. Balvor smiled at me for a moment, and then his face became serious again.

"Go!" he told me. I nodded and threw open the door. Running down the narrow road with my childhood friends watching me, I spread my wings and took off. It was very similar to the day I left. It wasn't long before the village disappeared from my view.

I flew low and fast to avoid the headwind that I had flown here. All the way, I thought of where the original painting could be. When I had arrived in the city only yesterday, my mother had said that the only place she didn't look for me and my father was with the Rez. It was kind of obvious that he would go there. So, the original painting would have to be somewhere so obvious my mother wouldn't be able to find it. I didn't take me long to figure out where it was. For a power thirsty wanna be dictator, my mother wasn't the smartest person on the planet.

I reached Zlhorv by sunset. Something was bound to go wrong soon; nothing ever went this smoothly with my luck.

"Why'd you come back?" Ryan asked me as I landed in my room. Why he was there, I didn't really know or want to know. Maybe he just had a gut feeling that I was going to come back. "I told you to go to Arez!"

"Balvor told me the original and the sword are here," I told him. "I know where the original painting is, and I hope the sword is there too."

"I hope you have a plan. Itrantia didn't believe me when I told her you went out for a tour of the territory."

"That wasn't a very good excuse," I said.

"It was the first thing I could think of. But anyway, her guards have been looking for you all day. I think she thinks someone told you of her plans and you went to your father. They have the painting guarded too," Ryan told me.

"Shit," I swore. "When do the watches change?"

"In about two minutes," Ryan told me. "Why?"

"Cause that's when we are going to go find the painting and the sword. And you're gonna help me," I answered, smiling evilly.

"I don't like that smile," Ryan said.

"You shouldn't."

DUN DUN DUUUUUUUUNNNNNNN!! lol! you know that green button is getting really lonely....it needs friends.

7. Chapter 6

Don't have much to say today. Tomorrow is New Years Eve so this might be the last chapter of 2008! yay!

Amy: Thanks for the tip. Considering that this story is already finished, I'll try my best to improve it.

I don't own Free Bird by Lynard Skynard (sorry if i spelt it wrong)....

Chapter Six: Escape of the Free Bird

Two minutes later, I sat silently atop one of the pillars in the hall. Ryan was below, in the hall itself. I heard him tell the guards that he was relieving them. I didn't have to worry about the real guards on the next shift coming; I knocked them out and tied them up in a closet. As the two guards disappeared from the hall, I jumped and landed next to Ryan.

"I hope you know what you're doing," he told me.

"I do too," I agreed. I sprinted down the hall, skidding to a stop in front of the prophecy painting, the one that spelled out my destiny. I glanced at the giant painting for a moment and then ran my fingers across the bottom of the canvas. I had to work fast, in case the guards came round and alerted the entire city. At the bottom right corner, I found what I was looking for. The tiniest portion of the paper layer above the real canvas was peeling upwards, as if it had been glued there. The unturned corner was just large enough so I could grab it but small enough to not be noticed. I grabbed it and ripped the fake painting from the original.

"Whoa," I whispered as the fake painting fell to the floor. The original painting was similar to the one I knew, yet so different. I was there in the same pose as the first and the eerie mist still lapped at my ankles, but another stood with me.

The boy looked about my age and his brown hair was tossed by the wind. Crystal blue eyes watched me, standing out against both the darkness of the painting and his darker toned skin. His wings were the same black as mine only the tips were pure white. Like me, he held a sword that matched the color of his wing tips. The neat clothes stood out in contrast with my ragged ones, but could not hide the muscle that laced his arms and chest.

We stood over and silhouette of a city, two cities actually. One I recognized as this city and the other I guessed was Arez. What it meant I did not know. Over the both of us, a dark silhouette loomed. It looked so similar to my own that I thought for a mere moment that it was me, but I knew it wasn't. It was my mother. Distant footsteps of at least a dozen soldiers and one set of smaller footsteps broke me from my thoughts.

"Shit," Ryan whispered. "It sounds like your mother's force. And I think she's with them." I curled my fingers under the massive frame and lifted the picture off the wall. It landed with an echoing thunk on the tile floor and the footsteps of the soldiers grew faster and harder. Sure enough, the sword, still sheathed from the day my father took me away, was strapped to the back of the painting. I belted the sheath and pulled the sword out, surprised on how it fit my hand perfectly and felt like nothing at all.

"Get out of here, Ryan," I whispered as the sound of the footsteps grew louder.

"No. I'm not leaving."

"That's an order, soldier," I growled, sheathing the sword and moving towards the painting. The footsteps were growing louder with every second.

"As you wish, my Lady," Ryan said. He bowed to me and bolted to the end of the hall. I was going to have to get him someday for the bowing thing. I thought I had made it clear that I just wanted him to call me Kalte. It wasn't like it mattered now or anything. I was probably never going to see him again after he rounded the corner. He rounded the corner in the same moment as my mother and her force appeared.

"You were foolish to come back, Kaltezira," my mother sneered.

"You were foolish to come looking for me," I replied simply. My back was to her as I lifted the painting back up onto the wall, leaving the fake at my feet. As I turned to face her, I saw something or someone I had never seen before. A large wolf stood at Itrantia's feet, almost hidden by its black coat. It glared at me with black eyes and growled.

"Hush, Vdzr," Itrantia said. So that was the famous, second-in-command Vdzr and his power: transformation. My mother walked forward, every step she took closer to me, I took a step back. I heard my pulse roaring in my ears, growing louder with every step and with each step, another soldier in her force drew his sword. "We can do this the easy way, Kaltezira, or the hard way," my mother offered, drawing a sword of her own as I stepped beneath the skylight and into the moonlight. I smiled evilly. I was right where I wanted to be.

"Then we shall do it the hard way," I growled, pulling out my own sword. In the same moment Vdzr pounced, aiming for my throat, I leaped into the air, shattering the skylight as my sword cut through it like a knife cutting butter. Shards of glass rained down upon my mother, Vdzr, and her soldiers as I flew through the now open window. Glass pieces hit the tile floor with several pings as I sheathed my sword and flew east, or a direction I guessed was east. How the sharp, possibly lethal shards of glass did not injure my mother, Vdzr, and the soldiers, I had no explanation. Pieces of glass had managed to sink into my arms, but I pulled them out with quick movements and let the blood run down my arms before it dried on my skin. I didn't know where I was going, but I hoped I was heading towards the city of Arez.

"Don't just stand there!" I heard Itrantia shout. "Go after her! She must not get to Arez!" Well at least now I knew I was going the right way. I laughed and flew onward, letting the wind carry me east. I pulled my trusty friend, the music playing square, and pressed the sideways triangle on the bottom of the circle.

If I leave here tomorrow

Will you still remember me?

Hell, yeah she would remember me. She would be after me in about a week, give or take a couple days. She would never forget about me. I would be running from her until the day I died, most likely.

For I must be traveling on now

'Cause there are too many places I've got to see

On the contrary, I've seen practically this entire planet. I just need to get as far away from this place as possible.

But if I stay here with you, girl

Things just wouldn't be the same

If I stayed here, I would most likely die. And it would not be a peaceful-kill-me-quickly-to-get-it-over-with kind of death. It would be a torture-me-break-me-and-then-kill-me kind of death.

'Cause I'm as free as a bird now

And this bird you cannot change

Oh and this bird you cannot change

And this bird you cannot change

The Lord knows, I can't change

Considering I just stumbled across a civilization in which everyone has wings, I think we are all as free as birds. I am just freer than most because I have the guts to actually, I don't know, leave. I'm not giving up my freedom, so I can just be killed by my insane mother and her pet wolf.

Bye, bye, baby, it's been a sweet love, yeah, yeah

Though this feelin' I can't change

I never really loved my mother, considering the fact that within twenty-four hours of meeting her I was told that she wants to kill me. And this feeling of wanting to live? I can never change that. I don't want to die yet. There are too many things I haven't done yet.

But please don't take this so badly

'Cause the Lord knows I'm to blame

She can take this as badly as she wants to and I won't care, because she is the one to blame. If she didn't want to kill me, I wouldn't be flying for my life and we all would be happy.

But, if I stay here with you, girl

Things just wouldn't be the same

'Cause I'm as free as a bird now

And this bird you cannot change

Oh and this bird you cannot change

And this bird you cannot change

The Lord knows, I can't change

Lord help me, I can't change

Lord, I can't change

Want to fly high, free bird

I can't change. I will never change. I will always fly high like the free bird I am. I will never lose myself and I will always be Kaltezira, Blood Stars in Black Sky.

The green button is getting REALLY lonely! It wants a friend for New Years....

8. Chapter 7

Happy New Year everyone! Sorry I haven't been updating, had to start studying for mid-terms. Yay! (not).

Thanks for reviewing...but I want to see if we can get more than one review in like a five day span....and more than one before I really NEED to post the next chapter..lol. :)

This is when things get good people! Enjoy!

Chapter Seven: True Home

I flew on through the night. Was I going to stop and sleep and possibly wake up with a sword to my throat? Let me think about this. No. My music player kept me awake through the night.

What if I squeezed myself into any shape

And I still don't fit?

What if I bend myself so much that I break

And I can't mend it?

If I did anything to fit in that avian city, I would lose myself and end up dead. If I lost myself, who I was, was there a guarantee that I would ever get myself back or make it out of there alive?

What if I burn so bright that the fire goes out

And I can't stay lit?

What's the point in it?

What is the point in losing myself by staying there? What would I get out of it? Itrantia would get my power and I would lose my life. I would lose everything.

I could get good at crying crocodile tears

Just to get along

I could carry on telling you what you want to hear

Till my voice is gone

I could tell you that I didn't go to Balvor, that I discovered the real painting by accident. The likelihood of you believing my story is about negative two.

But if I get to the place that I think is home

And I don't belong

What's the point in it, where's the benefit

When I'm gaining all but I'm losing it?

That is exactly my point. I thought that city was my home, but did I belong? No. I was still searching for the place I really belonged.

It's not worth having if it's too much to hold

It can dig so deep that you're left with a hole

Where's the energizer with a bag full of gold?

Nothing is worth it if you have to die for it. Do I need to say anything more?

Don't wanna end up like pirate bones

What I thought was treasure is just a pile of stones

I might have to judge it better be lying alone

Just a pile of pirate bones

I thought that I found where I really belonged but it was all false. It was just a lie.

If I forfeit my soul, it ain't worth having

If it's something I stole, it ain't worth having

I'm not giving myself up. I'm still the wondering untamed soul I have been.

What if I stake everything I had on a dream

And it's counterfeit?

If I reach the end that justifies the means

Could I live with it?

My dream of actually having a home was crushed, a dream destined to never come true. Could I live with that fact or just go back to a place that I could never consider home?

And if it's true that having too much of any good thing

Could only make me sick

What's the point in it, where's the benefit

When I'm gaining all but I'm losing it

I'm losing my mind just thinking about it. If the Rez don't drive me to insanity, this will. I'm losing myself with out even trying.

It's not worth having if it's too much to hold

It can dig so deep that you're left with a hole

Where's the energizer with a bag full of gold?

I spent three years of my life living in the woods, trying to find my home, only to find nothing. There's nothing out here for me. I listened to the remainder of the song, repeatedly making the same connections to the lyrics.

Don't wanna end up like pirate bones

What I thought was treasure is just a pile of stones

I might have to judge it better be lying alone

Pirate bones

If I forfeit my soul, it ain't worth having

If it's something I stole, it ain't worth having

It's not that much to me

If losing out is what it means

This way means shallow victory

Is empty, empty

It's just not worth the prize

It's only a fool's paradise

It's draining every drop of lies

Until I'm dry, lie, pirate bones

It's not worth having if it's too much to hold

It can dig so deep that you're left with a hole

Where's the energizer with a bag full of gold?

Don't wanna end up like pirate bones

What I thought was treasure is just a pile of stones

I might have to judge it better be lying alone

Just a pile of pirate bones

If I forfeit my soul, it ain't worth having

If it's something I stole, it ain't worth having

Pirate bones, pirate bones

What I thought was precious is just a pile of stones

Pirate bones

If I forfeit my soul, it ain't worth having

Flying east, I kept my eyes open for any sign of attack. I never been chased by an army, but it was sure interesting. I glanced backward every three seconds. I think I was becoming paranoid. As the horizon began to lighten, I saw a city in the distance. No doubt in my mind that it was Arez.

I wanted to slow down, to reassure myself that Itrantia wouldn't take her army this deep into enemy territory, but the tailwind had different ideas. Besides, I was becoming too paranoid to slow down. The east wind pushed me faster and faster. I had a pretty good idea that the sunrise would be red today.

As the sun began to dye the sky a blood red, I reached the city. I knew I wouldn't exactly be welcomed here. I would most likely be attacked or shot at, but I was willing to risk it. I could defend myself, from an hundred arrows I wasn't sure of. No time like the present to find out.

I landed on top of one of the watch towers, the smartest place to land in the history of ever. As the blood red sun rose over the horizon, I had at least a hundred arrows aimed at me. I did not move. I just waited for someone to say something and realize who I was, if anyone actually knew who I was. When I felt the sun at my back, which was a surprising warm feeling despite the bitter wind tossing my hair into my face, I stood, holding onto the flag pole and spreading my wings to keep my balance. I could only imagine how terrifying that appeared as the sun rose red.

I saw every person in the city staring up at me, waiting for me to launch myself into the sky and call the army of Zlhorv to destroy them all. Just as I was about to jump down and tell the people I wasn't there to kill them, the doors of the castle opened. About fifty soldiers came out, all pointing arrows at me. What a surprise. You would think that I haven't done anything by now that I wasn't gonna kill everybody. Then two figures emerged from the castle, one was a woman and the other a boy of about seventeen or so it looked from this distance.

The boy looked familiar. Where have I seen him before? I searched my mind while the boy and the woman talked, or what looked like talking from this height. When he turned to look at me, I thought I got it. He couldn't be the boy from the prophecy that I got to look at for all of five seconds, could he? When he spread his wings, I knew it was him. They were as dark as the darkest night with pure white wing tips that looked like stars in the night sky. He took off, obviously heading towards me. As he got closer, I recognized him. His brown hair was of medium length, hanging in his eyes like Balvor's. His eyes were what held my attention the most. They were the purest blue I had ever seen, such a blue could not be shown in a mere painting. As he flew closer and closer to me, I saw that he recognized me too, or maybe he had already recognized me and I was just now noticing.

"Kaltezira," he whispered as he landed in front of me. How he knew my name confused me.

"Hi," I said. He chuckled and placed his hand over mine where it still held the flag pole. He smiled at me in this way that made me think that I was supposed to say something.

"Aren't you gonna say anything?" he asked me. Yeah I was right.

"Yeah, how do you know my name?" He laughed and ran his hand through his hair the way most boys did when they were nervous. I had about as much experience with guys as a two year old, but I did know some things.

"How do you not know mine?" he countered. Now his face was less than an inch from mine and his free hand was wrapped around my waist. My breathing was ragged, yet silent as I tried to figure out what detail I had missed when I looked at the painting for all of three seconds. My instincts were to pull away, wonder, more like demand, what the hell he was doing, but I didn't. Something about him made me feel safe and wanted, like I had a purpose here. Besides, if I had let my instincts take over, I would face a death by arrows within moments.

Was there some hidden detail that said I would fall in love with this boy? There probably was, because I already had. I felt like I would throw myself in front of a hundred archers for this boy. I would fight to the death for him. I would risk my own life to make sure he had a chance to live, with or without me. I wanted to be with him every moment from now until the day I died. To me, this boy was worth dying for. I heard my pulse drumming in my ears again as my mind raced, like I had been running from an army for a day, which, basically, I had been.

"Well, I only got to look at that painting for all of three seconds," I replied, my words coming out in barely a whisper. He chuckled and I heard more muffled laughter below me. Damn soldiers. I forgot I had a hundred plus arrows pointed at me. I rolled my eyes and reached for the handle of my sword. What's-his-name's hand grabbed mine, stopping me.

"Do that we are both dead," he told me.

"Zhayrald, you're going to be dead if you don't come down here," someone scolded from below. "All I asked you to do was figure out if the girl was gonna send an army down on us, not make out with her!"

"Mother," Zhayrald moaned in an annoyed fashion, letting go of me and turning to face his mother. I had to cover my mouth to keep from laughing.

"I was gonna tell you that we should be going in anyway," I said, letting go of the flag pole and standing next to him. "It's going to rain in about two seconds." I jumped off the tower and landed at the base of the wall silently. Déjà vu. The only change was that I felt Zhayrald's eyes on my back the entire time and the difference in location.

"How do you know?" he asked me.

"Red sky in the morning sailors take warning," I recited. "Duh." As I finished, thunder rolled and it started raining, hard. I laughed as he landed, losing his footing and falling on his back in the now muddy ground. He glared at me with his pure blue eyes that I absolutely loved, the icy blue stood out like a single star in the moonless night in the lack of light. I smiled.

"Kaltezira," Zhayrald's mother greeted me. "It's a pleasure to finally meet you."

"It's a pleasure to meet you too," I replied, shaking her outstretched hand. "Between you and me, I have no idea what's going on." She just chuckled.

"Did you ever see the prophecy?" she asked. I shook my head.

"For all of two seconds," I explained. "I kind of had to find the sword hidden behind it and then run for my life."

"Your mother," the queen sighed, shaking her head in disapproval and placing a hand on my shoulder. "She is such a power hungry bitch she is willing to attempt to kill her own daughter. Let's talk about something less depressing, shall we?"

"If you wanna learn more about me," I told her. "A majority is depressing."

"Let's get you out of the rain first. Zhayrald, get out of the mud," she told her son.

"I'm trying, Mother," Zhayrald replied, finally managing to stand up. I chuckled as he jogged over to us, standing on the other side of me. I wanted him to wrap his arm around my waist again, to hold me across the length of his body, to press his lips against mine, but I guess I could wait. Despite finding my home only a couple days ago, I felt like I truly belonged here, like I had found my true home.

Five pages on Word! 2,260 words! Longest so far! Woo! The song was Pirate Bones By Natasha Bedingfield. It's good, go listen to it! And Review! That green button alone!

9. Chapter 8

This chapter is longer than the last one by like...not a lot. lol. It's 2,761 while the last one was like 2,260 (not counting the AN. the word count was closer with the AN)!

The song in this chapter is You Found Me By Kelly Clarkson.

Hugs to my two reviewers! And you guys will get Zhayrald plushies! yay! If you can guess who Zhayrald reminds me of, you get a cookie too (its not rocket science)!

So yeah...the chapters only get longer from here. Enjoy!

Chapter Eight: Decency

Ziaghra was the name of Zhayrald's mother and she was like the mother I never had. The only resemblance I saw between her and her son were the crystal blue eyes and the brown hair. She didn't make me wear fancy robes and such to dinner that night. She let me wear jeans and a t-shirt and she insisted that I call her Zia, nothing else. I liked the city of Arez so much more than Zlhorv, and I had only been here a couple of hours. Well, I had been in Zlhorv for a matter of hours too, so I guess it doesn't matter. I still like Arez more.

Now, I sat across from Zhayrald at an extremely long table. Ziaghra sat at the head, I at her left, and Zhayrald on her right. Why we were sitting at a table about twenty feet long I didn't know, nor did I care. I was too busy eating. Zhayrald just stared at me the entire time while I ate. I think he thought I was crazy while I ate like a pig. If you hadn't had a descent meal in about three years, you would be stuffing your face too.

"When was the last time you ate?" he asked me.

"A decent meal?" I asked, with my mouth half full. "Three years, easy."

"Where have you been? Hiding in the woods from your psycho mother?"

"Pretty close," I answered. "I've been hiding in the bushes outside your window, watching you every night." Of course, I said these words super casually, so they sounded true. Zhayrald looked at me like I was nuts, as if he wasn't already, his crystal blue eyes bugging. I laughed at the stunned expression on his face. "I was kidding. I have been flying all over the world, finding a place where I belonged; I thought I was the only avian."

"And then you found Zlhorv," Zhayrald said, "and found out that your crazy mother wants to kill you so she can destroy us."

"Exactly," I agreed.

"But what I don't get is where you grew up," Ziaghra commented. "You couldn't have grown up on your own."

"I didn't," I answered. "My father raised me with the Rez. As far as I know, he's still there."

"That's the last place I expected Balvor to go."

"It was probably the last place Itrantia would expect," Zhayrald commented.

"She didn't even check there. She's not the smartest power hungry dictator I've known," I joked.

"She's the only power hungry dictator you've known," Zhayrald pointed out. I shrugged; he had a point. I had finished all of the food on my plate, plus two other helpings, while either of them had touched their food. I considered asking them if they were going to finish the food on their plates, but decided against it.

"So how long did you say you had to look at the painting?" Ziaghra asked me after a few moments, standing up.

"About two seconds," I answered.

"Well we are going to have to change that, aren't we?" She led me out of the dining hall, Zhayrald following us, and into a long hall similar to the one in Zlhorv. Large paintings hung on the walls, no doubt duplicates of the originals, and an elegant carpet ran down the center of the hall. We stopped at the painting that was too familiar to me now; it had been on my mind all day. It was identical to the painting at Zlhorv in everyway. All that I really wanted to do was to find all of the details I missed. I heard Zhayrald drum his fingers on the hilt of the sword belted to his side as I glanced at the painting.

"It's obvious to me that Zhayrald and I will end the war," I said, breaking the silence. "We each have some sort of power that will help us over come Itrantia, the silhouette in the background. The silhouette of the cities, which are no doubt Arez and Zlhorv, means, I believe, that the war will end in a draw, a standstill. All of this is important, but I feel as though I am missing something important."

"You are missing two things, actually," Zhayrald commented, stepping forward so that he stood beside me. "We will have to use our powers to overcome Vdzr as well."

"How do you know?"

"His silhouette is in the painting as well," Zhayrald explained. He traced the outline of a wolf with his fingertips, letting them feel the strokes of the brush that had painted the picture. I saw the dark figure now, a dark ominous outline of the wolf that looked even more threatening than the silhouette of Itrantia. It had a very strong resemblance to Vdzr himself, only missing the gleam in his black eyes.

"What else was I missing?" I asked, looking up at Zhayrald, wondering if he was going to tell me. I felt as though the detail I was looking for was still hidden in the painting. It was probably extremely obvious.

"I'll let you figure that out," Zhayrald said, smiling down at me. I had a gut feeling that it had something to do with him. I let my fingers trace the major outlines of the painting within my reach, hoping that what I was looking for would be reveled, even though I had no clue what I was looking for.

"It must be something extremely obvious," I thought. "I'm probably over looking it."

"You probably are," Ziaghra agreed. She knew what it was, I knew it.

"Zia, will you tell me?" I asked.

"No," was my answer. I sighed and sat down in front of the painting. I would stay here as long as I needed to. If I left, the missing detail would sit in the back of my head and never leave me alone until I figured it out. I pulled my music square out of my pocket after I heard Ziaghra and Zhayrald's footsteps fade away. Sticking the headphones in my ears, I leaned back, now lying against the tile floor and my hands on the back of my head while I studied the painting.

Is this a dream?

If it is please, don't wake me from this high

I've become comfortably numb, until you opened up my eyes

To what it's like when everything's right, I can't believe

I had just begun to accept the fact that I would be alone for the rest of my life, until this morning. This is where I belonged, forever, I just knew it. I actually fit in and no one wanted to kill me, a plus for me.

You found me when no one was lookin'

How did you know just where I would be?

Yeah, you broke through all of my confusion

The ups and the downs and you still didn't leave

I guess that you saw what nobody could see

You found me, you found me

Zhayrald had found me on the top of the watchtower this morning. He didn't question my confusion when he caught me off guard, he just went with it. He had found the other half of my being I didn't know I was missing.

So, here we are and that's pretty far

When you think of where we've been

No going back, I'm fading out, all that's faded me within

You're by my side, now everything's right, I can't believe

My life was never going to be the same now. I couldn't go back to my life on the run; it was like I needed Zhayrald in my life now. If I died, he would die too and vise versa.

You found me when no one was lookin'

How did you know just where I would be?

Yeah, you broke through all of my confusion

The ups and the downs and you still didn't leave

I guess that you saw what nobody could see

You found me, you found me

The way he looked at me on the tower this morning told me that he had found the other half of him that had been hiding in the forest all these years. He probably knew who I was more than I did.

And I was hiding 'til you came along

And showed me where I belong

You found me when no one else was lookin'

How did you know? How did you know?

He showed me that this was where I belonged. I wasn't planning on leaving anytime soon. I loved him too much to leave him, ever. I could see in his eyes that he loved me too much to even let me leave, or to let himself leave me.

You found me when no one was lookin'

How did you know just where I would be?

Yeah, you broke through all of my confusion

The ups and the downs and you still didn't leave

I guess that you saw what nobody could see

You found me, you found me

You broke through all of my confusion

The ups and the downs and you still didn't leave

I guess that you saw what nobody could see

The good and the bad and the things in between

You found me, you found me

My now closed eyes, shot open and I sat up so abruptly I felt dizzy for a moment. Pulling the headphones out of my ears, turning off the square, putting it back in my pocket and standing up to look at the painting again. I almost knew what I was looking for. I let my fingers trace the major outlines of the painting, searching for that final fact that would finish the puzzle. I traced my wings last, amazed by the extreme likeness. It was there where I found what I was looking for.

My second to outmost feather on my left wing was different from the others. The change was so subtle that I wasn't really surprised that I had missed it before. The feather was mostly black like the others, but the tip was white, not a deep red. Now I noticed that Zhayrald's left wing in the painting was similar. His second to outmost feather on his left wing had a deep red wing tip. It was like the feathers had been switched. I spread my left wing quickly and looked it over. All of the tips were still my blood red, not a single one was Zhayrald's white.

I got my second light bulb moment in a day, a personal record for me, at that moment. I had always wondered why Zhayrald had almost kissed me on the roof this morning, and why I had almost let him. I had wondered why I fell in love with him the moment I had looked into his eyes. This was the explanation. He was…dare I even think the words…my soul mate. The one I was supposed to be with forever. Considering that I had been told somewhere that avians had an extremely long life span, or just had a gut feeling about the fact, I did have forever. In a world where I thought I was alone, there was someone that would get to put up with me and wouldn't mind.

"When you realize things, you can't hide it. No matter how hard you try," Zhayrald said, breaking the silence as he came out of nowhere.

"What?" I asked him, shocked. How long had he been there? Minutes? Seconds? Just long enough? What did he see? What didn't he see?

"I saw when you figured it out. Your eyes widened and you immediately looked at the floor," Zhayrald explained, chuckling. I felt my face grow hot as I stared at the floor again. My face was probably as red as the sun was at sunrise. Zhayrald laughed this time and wrapped both of his arms around my waist, pulling me closer to him as he rested his chin on my shoulder. "Where have you been all my life?" he whispered in my ear.

"I told you," I answered. "I've been in the bushes outside your window, watching your every move. I've always been there, you've just never noticed." Zhayrald laughed again and I felt something gently touch the top of my head, his lips possibly. That would make sense; he was almost a head taller than me. "How long were you there?"

"The entire time," he told me. "I never really left."

"How much did you see?"

"Everything," he replied. Shit.

"How long was I there, just lying on the floor?" I asked.

"A couple hours," he answered. "Are we done playing twenty questions?"

"There were only three questions, and yes," I said with a yawn.

"Since I know that the last time you ate a decent meal, not counting tonight, was three years ago, I am going to assume that was the last time you actually slept," Zhayrald said, changing the subject as my eyelids grew heavy and I yawned again.

"Basically," I agreed. Zhayrald chuckled and led me upstairs, his hand around my waist the entire way. Normally, I think I would care, but I was just too tired, or maybe I just wouldn't care. I collapsed on the bed as soon as he opened the door. I heard him chuckle as I buried my face in the pillow. I had never really slept in a comfortable bed before. The Rez only had cots, if you count a pile of straw on the dirt floor a cot, and they were anything but comfortable.

"The last time you slept on a real bed?" Zhayrald asked me.

"Never," I mumbled into the pillow.

"Nice," he muttered. I chuckled as I sat up and Zhayrald sat next to me.

"Thanks, Zhay," I said, "for everything."

"Thanks for not calling an army down on us, Kalte," he answered. I chuckled and he smiled. I realized now that his face was only an inch from mine and my breath was ragged again, just like this morning. Only difference was that Ziaghra wasn't here to ruin the moment. Zhayrald closed the distance between us silently, letting his lips connect with mine.

I had never been kissed before in my life, not by either of my parents and certainly not by any guy. Nothing could ever come close to this. Zhayrald wrapped his arm around my waist again, pulling me closer as I felt his other hand run through my hair. I didn't know how to react. I was kind of scared actually; one move could end the best moment of my life: this moment. I had lived on my own for a majority of my life and nothing scared me then. Running from my crazy mother only last night didn't send fear through my mind, but kissing him did. I think he was making me fall apart. This boy would be the end of me, I swear it. Just as I wrapped both of my arms around Zhayrald's neck, he peeled his lips from mine.

"Wow," he whispered, pressing his forehead against mine. He was so close I could feel his breath hot on my face. It wasn't close enough.

"Wow is an understatement," I said, my breath extremely heavy now. "Now, I won't be able to sleep." Zhayrald chuckled and rested his chin on the top of my head as I rested my head at the base of his neck. Life couldn't get much better than this.

"If I leave, will you sleep?" he asked.

"No," I muttered into his neck. "I'll just stare at the ceiling all night."

"And if I don't leave?"

"I'll stare at you," I replied, looking up into his eyes. Zhayrald smiled and pulled me closer, if that was even possible.

"I guess I'm gonna have to force you to go to sleep then," he said. I rolled my eyes. What was he gonna do? Zhayrald chuckled and started drawing circles in between where my wings met my back. Damn, he was good. My eyelids felt heavy almost instantly. I let them close and let sleep over come my consciousness.

Would asking for five reviews be a little too much? Maybe getting the number of reviews up to fifteen? You guys will get cookies.......*tries to hypnotize you guys into reviewing* omg the font changed! lol.

10. Chapter 9

This isn't as long as the past couple of chapters (only three pages on word) but it's one of my favorite! Let's see if we can get up to 15 reviews this time!

Chapter Nine: Flying in the Rain

Either pillows could shape shift or I had been kidnapped in my sleep. My mother would be crazy enough to put me on a hard bed. Yet, this bed was so much more comfortable than the other one so that ruled out that possibility. I don't think pillows moved either. Of course, nothing made sense considering I was slowly easing out of unconsciousness. After a minute or two, I realized something was stroking my hair. I opened my eyes and blinked a couple of times, staring at the wall for no real reason. I looked up to find Zhayrald smiling at me, stroking my hair.

"Well, hi," I murmured, blinking a couple more times.

"Morning," Zhayrald replied. He said it like he didn't see anything weird about me using him as a pillow, I assumed, for a majority of the night.

"Shouldn't you be in your room?" I asked him. It wasn't like I didn't want him here. What I didn't want was to get caught like this. I mean, we had met yesterday, yet we acted like we had known each other for our entire lives.

"I should be," he replied, "but I couldn't sleep." Oh, I get it. He missed me. If I was awake all night, I probably would have missed him too. It was like the life bonds of the people of Czem. Once they found the one they were supposed to be with forever, there was no hope in separating them.

"Won't Ziaghra get pissed if she catches us like this?" Zhayrald chuckled and kissed my forehead.

"My mother wouldn't care if you had another head and a tail," he told me. "I grew up kind of alone, the guards were really my only friends. I never hung out with people my age. She hid the prophecy from me until I was sixteen, and it was then I realized why I never really connected with any of the girls my age." I nodded, understanding. Considering I had grown up with people a foot shorter than me a majority of the time, I never questioned my nonexistent connection with any of the guys.

"Well in that case," I said, resting my head on his chest again and trying to go back to sleep.

"Nice try," Zhayrald said, sitting up, forcing me to fall back down on the bed. He looked over his shoulder, smiling as I sat there, dazed for a moment.

"Now I won't be able to go back to sleep," I grumbled as I sat up. "What time is it? Three in the morning?"

"It's almost noon. It's been raining all day," Zhayrald told me. No wonder it was so dark. The rain gave me an idea. I stood up and walked over to the window, forcing it open. There was barely any wind, if any at all, and the rain was warm and gentle against my outstretched hand, perfect flying conditions. "What are you doing?"

"Come on," I told him. "We're going flying."

"But it's raining," Zhayrald said. No duh, Captain Obvious. I flicked the water droplets off my hand at him, trying not to laugh at his startled expression but failed miserably.

"That's the point," I pointed out, still laughing. Zhayrald was silent. I stopped laughing, shocked. "Don't tell me you have never flown in the rain before."

"I've never flown in the rain before," he replied plainly.

"Then you haven't lived," I said, grabbing his hand. I pulled him off the bed, dragging him to the window. "It's just water. You're not going to die." I sat on the windowsill, one leg in the room and the other out.

"And if it does kill me?" Zhayrald asked, smirking. I rolled my eyes and pulled him onto the windowsill with me. His head pressed against the top of the window, flattening his hair.

"What am I going to do with you if you don't know how to live?" I asked. Zhayrald chuckled softly and ran his fingers through my hair.

"Teach me," he whispered his face less than an inch from mine. I tore myself from his grip, jumping from the window in the same moment. I dove straight down against the side of the castle, letting my wings open and carry me upward about fifty feet from the ground. I turned around to face the castle just in time to see Zhayrald jump from the window and into the rain. I laughed and took off into the forest; the expression on his face was priceless. If he wanted me to kiss him, he was gonna have to catch me.

"Isn't this kinda dangerous?" Zhayrald called up to me, dodging trees and branches as he tried to catch up with me. I weaved through the trees with no trouble at all, while he hit a branch every couple of minutes.

"Yes," I answered, "but it's not life threatening."

"Are you sure? Ow, damned branch," Zhayrald murmured as he hit a branch again.

"To you, it could be life threatening, considering that's the fifth tree you've hit," I joked. I didn't hear him say anything else, but flew onward just in case. I kept my eyes pealed in case he decided to try and come at me from the side. As I slowed to a stop, I couldn't see him. My hair was plastered to my face and back from the rain, which didn't come down as hard under the trees.

Of course, Zhayrald came up from under me, the only place I didn't look. He scooped me up in his arms, forcing my wings against my back.

"Well, hi," he whispered, smiling down at me. I smiled back, my hazel eyes meeting his crystal blue ones. They stood out against his tan skin and his brown hair that was plastered to his face, like mine.

"Hi," I answered. He landed in a near by tree, setting me down on a branch and sitting next to me. "Was I right or was I right?"

"About what?"

"That you haven't lived until you have flown in the rain," I reminded him. Zhayrald nodded.

"You were right about that," he agreed. "But why'd you fly out the window?" Let me translate that: Why didn't you let me kiss you?

"'Cause it was the only way to get you out here," I answered, grabbing a branch above my head and standing up, holding onto the branch so I wouldn't fall. "It was either that or I could have pushed you."

"You could have just pushed me then," Zhayrald said, pulling himself up so that he stood before me.

"Then I wouldn't have seen the priceless expression on your face," I commented, smiling. Thunder rumbled in the distance as the rain come down a bit harder, still warm and gentle against my skin. This feeling, the feeling that you would sacrifice yourself for a person just so that they could live and not care if you didn't live, was so foreign to me. I had never felt this way about anyone before, but now I felt that way about Zhayrald. Was this love? I honestly had no idea.

"What am I going to do with you, Kalte?" Zhayrald asked, looking down at me and placing a hand on the tree behind me. Somehow, I had backed myself into the tree trunk, or maybe I had just been there the entire time.

"Love me and let us save the world however we are supposed to," I said. Hold crap. Did I actually just say that? I felt my face grow warm against the cool rain falling on my face. Zhayrald chuckled and leaned closer so that my face was about an inch from his.

"I'll do the first part," he whispered. "I'll leave fate to figure out the rest." When he kissed me this time, I wasn't afraid. I wrapped my arms around his neck and twisted my fingers in his hair. He held one hand on the small of my back, his fingers playing with the ends of my hair as he kept his other hand against the tree. Gently and carefully, he began to move his lips against mine. I did the same, my breath coming out in ragged gasps. My body fit perfectly against his, as though it was molded for him and him alone. When he peeled his lips from mine, I thought I heard a soft moan escape from my lips. Zhayrald heard it and smiled, pressing his forehead against mine. His lips were so close to mine, yet so far away. I wanted to feel the spark that jumped between us every time he kissed me. He was my life now.

"This is all so weird to me," I murmured.

"How?" Zhayrald asked me, running his fingers through my hair, resting his hand on the side of my face.

"I grew up not loving anyone. I thought there was no one like me in the world. I thought that I was alone," I explained. "I thought I would never love anyone the way I love you." I let my fingers play with his hair again. As if they had a mind of their own, they moved from his hair to his face, tracing his jaw and stopping against the side of his face. My hand only stayed there for a moment before brushing his cheek and returning to his hair.

"You'll never be alone anymore, Kaltezira," Zhayrald whispered. "I'll always be with you. Never forget that." He pressed his lips against mine, letting the spark jump between us as he pulled me closer.

If you guys liked that chapter, wait until the next one! Much more romance where that came from guys! Review!

11. Chapter 10

Hey everyone! Sorry its been a while! I forgot to mention that I was going to be away from my computer for the weekend, but now I'm back! And it's time for my favorite/longest chapter(to date. 3,588 words!)! Yay!

But I just realized something! There are only six more chapters! *sob* But then there's the sequel (more info about that later)! yay!

Ok, I'm going to shut up now, and let you guys get on with the chapter...but first! *drum roll*

I gotta do a disclaimer 'cause I haven't done one in a while! *mutters* even if I am being forced to *glares at Kaltezira and Zhayrald who are glaring at me*

Kalte: Get on with it.

Me: Oh shut up.

Zhay: Could you take any longer?!

Me: Could you be any more impatient to make out with your girlfriend?!

*awkward silence*

Me: HA! *Kalte draws sword* OKAY OKAY! I OWN THIS WORLD OF MUTANTS BUT DON'T OWN ANY MR/TWILIGHT(thats in like the last couple chapters) REFERENCES! NOW DON'T KILL ME!

I had to do that! lol. Okay, I'm done now.

Chapter Ten: Thunder's Kiss and Thunder's Kill

The next six days were the best six days of my entire life, so far. Every moment I spent with Zhayrald, I felt complete, and I knew he felt the same. Every morning, after grabbing something to eat, we took off outside the city, letting the wind currents carry us anywhere. That's all we really did, flew and talked. I had never seen the world the way Zhayrald showed it to me. Everything seemed so new, so different. Maybe it was just because he was there. Every night, we returned to Arez, too tired to really do anything but shower, eat dinner, and go to sleep, I in his arms and him in mine.

Today, the wind currents carried us over to the mountains that rested on the shore. I had never flown in mountains before, these being the only ones I knew about. Clouds covered the sky today, unlike the rest of the sunny week. I guessed it was going to rain again.

"So you've never flown in the mountains before?" Zhayrald asked me again, flying up beside me.

"Nope," I replied, popping the 'p'.

"Then you haven't lived," he said. I chuckled at how he had reversed our lines from almost a week ago.

"I bet flying in the rain is much more fun than flying in these mountains," I countered as we flew up to the mountains.

"You can't say that considering the fact that you have never flown in these mountains, but it's not. You're just going to have to keep up if you really want to have fun," he challenged, diving into the mountain range.

"You're on," I called, my voice echoing off the rocks as I dove after him. I had to admit, weaving in between large pointy, possibly lethal rocks could be considered fun. I caught sight of Zhayrald as he wove in between the peaks with much a greater speed than I did. The wind pulled his hair pass his face, his crystal eyes sparkling in the morning sun. When he smiled at me, I came pretty close to being introduced to the side of the mountain. I heard his laughter bounce off the rocks.

"No fair! You had an advantage!" I complained when I finally managed to catch up to him.

"So did you when we flew in the rain, so now we are even."

"No we aren't," I replied.

"How so?"

"You distracted me." Zhayrald just laughed again.

"You've distracted me on several occasions," he countered. I blushed and Zhayrald smiled again. We flew in silence for a few moments until Zhayrald angled his wings down and dove towards a cave I could see in the side of one of the mountains. I circled the mountain top and joined him a minute later.

"How long have you known about this place?" I asked, gazing out at the horizon. The ocean stretched for miles at the base of the mountains.

"Found it when I ran away for a day when I was eight," Zhayrald told me, wrapping his arms around my waist and resting his chin on my shoulder. I looked at him, my eyes asking a million questions. "I wasn't the smartest eight year old. I ran away because I was really lonely, I didn't have many friends," he explained with a shrug. I nodded and glanced at my feet. I had never had many friends that I could really connect with, growing up with a bunch of people shorter and so much different than I was. A peaceful silence followed. We eventually sat on the edge of the cliff, letting our feet dangle over the edge, still in silence.

"Zhay?" I asked, breaking the silence.

"Yeah, Kalte?" Zhayrald replied, looking at me.

"What was it like to grow up, knowing about everything? Your position, your title, our destiny?"

"Well, it wasn't the best. I always got treated different. I don't think people accepted me for who I was, just my title and my destiny. I would have preferred to grow up like you, free of it all," he explained. I chuckled.

"Trust me; you were better off than I was. The Rez people are probably the most annoying people on this planet. They only get to be four feet tall, so you feel like a giant among them. And the never ending feeling of loneliness," I shuddered at the memory, even if it was only over a week old. "I just felt so alone all the time, like there was no one else like me, no one I could relate to. I even felt that way in Zlhorv, it just wasn't right."

"And then you showed up on a watchtower one morning, looking like you were going to kill us all," Zhayrald said, smiling. I smiled back, brushing the hair out of his eyes.

"And then you almost kissed me in front of your entire city," I replied. "And it started raining and you fell on your back in the mud." I laughed at the memory of his ice blue eyes glaring at me.

"And you just laughed."

"You would have laughed too, if you just saw your face," I told him, still laughing. He glared at me again, why I didn't know. I laughed harder. "Just like that!" Zhayrald's lips turned upwards in a smile that made me wonder if he was gonna throw me off the edge of the cliff right then. His evil smile scared me.

"I'm dead, aren't I?" I asked my eyes wide with fear and worry for my own safety.

"Yeah, you are," he replied. Oh shit. I managed to escape his arms before he could do anything and I sprinted to the back of the cave.

"You're going to have to be faster than that if you're planning on torturing me," I taunted. As if he evaporated out of the shadows behind me, Zhayrald locked his arms around me, his breath hot by my ear. He smiled again and poked me in my stomach, causing me to giggle uncontrollably.

"What was that?" he asked me, surprised.

"What? I giggled. So giggling is illegal here I guess?" I replied, confused.

"You've never giggled. Ever. You told me yourself." Oh yeah, I had forgotten about that.

"Well, there's a first time for everything," I said, breaking into uncontrollable giggles as he poked me again. Then he started tickling me and I broke into uncontrollable laughter. I tried to escape from his arms, but just ended up squirming without a purpose.

"Zhay," I managed to say in between laughs, "Stop…it...I'm gonna…bust…a gut….or something…"

"Nope," he answered, popping the 'p'. I started laughing so hard that I think tears came to my eyes, the pain in my gut was turning into actual pain, and I think I was laughing so hard that I couldn't breathe.

"Zhay…really…stop," I said, still laughing. Now I realized that Zhayrald had started laughing, but he finally stopped tickling me. When I could finally breathe, I opened my eyes, just now realizing I had shut them. My back, and wings, were pressed against the stone floor. Zhayrald's knees were on either side of my hips and his palms pressed flat against the dirt floor on either side of my neck. How we had gotten here, I really had no idea. I looked up at Zhayrald's face, and looked into his eyes. He had stopped laughing when my eyes met his and his met mine. Realizing what the hell was going on, his face turned a deep red, and I felt my own face grow warm.

"Kalte, I'm sorry," Zhayrald began his voice no more than a whisper. His eyes tore away from mine and I saw him shift his weight.

"Don't be," I whispered. I pulled myself onto my elbows, my face now only half of a foot away from his. Zhayrald started to move away from me, but I stopped him by placing my hand on the side of his face. His eyes met mine again and, the next thing I knew, his lips were on mine.

This kiss was different than all of the others, and I loved it. Zhayrald's lips weren't cautious, careful and gentle like they always were when they moved against mine. This time…I am lacking the words to describe it…this time, his lips moved aggressively, but not in a bad way, against my own. The love that had wielded us together, the spark that shook me every time he kissed me, the warmth that I felt when he held me close, everything poured into this one kiss. My fingers knotted in his hair, held his lips to mine. My other hand rested on the back of his neck while his fingers buried themselves in my hair. His free hand had traveled from my neck to the small of my back, sending shivers down my spine, causing Zhayrald's lips to upturn into a smile. As he pressed my body to his, my legs wrapped themselves around his waist, allowing him to pull me closer. Something traced my lower lip, and that something was begging for entrance to my mouth. My lips parted, my breath escaping in a ragged gasp, and Zhayrald's tongue explored my mouth and battled with my tongue. A moan escaped my now parted lips as thunder rolled in the distance and I felt Zhayrald's lips upturn into a smile again. We could have been here, just kissing in the middle of a cave, for hours, and we wouldn't have noticed. Hell, the world could have exploded, and we wouldn't have given a damn.

It wasn't until I felt Zhayrald's hand slide up the back of my shirt and rest on my bare lower back that I pulled away. I was beginning to feel lightheaded anyway. Our lips now barely touched each other, far enough apart so that we could breathe, but still too far away.

"Were you planning on taking my shirt off or something?" I asked him, our lips moving together as our breath mixed between us. Zhayrald hesitated for a moment.

"No," he answered. "Were you planning on taking off mine?" I blushed scarlet as I realized both of my hands rested on his bare chest, tracing the lines of his muscles subconsciously.

"No," I replied, hesitant as I wrapped my arms around his neck. Zhayrald smiled and moved his lips from mine to kiss the bridge of my nose. Zhayrald shifted his weight again and started to stand. Then I remembered the low clearance of the cave was.

"You might wanna…" thunk. "…never mind."Both of our heads hit the roof of the cave. Wait, I was at least four inches shorter than Zhayrald. Why did my head hit the roof too? I blushed; probably a tomato red this time, as I realized my legs were still wrapped around his waist and Zhayrald had his hands on my back, keeping me there. Zhayrald chuckled and pressed his lips to my forehead as I slowly removed my legs from around his waist and let my feet drop to the ground. Another rumble of thunder rolled through the mountains and Zhayrald and I walked over to the edge of the cliff at the mouth of the cave.

"We should be heading back soon," he said as the wind picked up. "Looks like it's gonna be a big storm." I nodded in agreement and shook out my wings. I was about to jump when a gust of wind blew through, carrying a feint howl. My eyes grew large with fear and I took off with Zhayrald watching me from the edge. "What is it, Kalte?" he asked, seeing the expression on my face when I reached the top of the mountain for a better view.

"We are closer to Zlhorv than we are to Arez," I said, my words drowned by a crash of thunder and the crack of lightning.

"What is it, Kaltezira?!" Zhayrald shouted, worry leaking from his voice. I flew back down to him, hovering just over the edge of the cliff.

"We are closer to Zlhorv than we are to Arez," I shouted over the wind, my voice cracking from the fear that showed in my eyes and rang from my voice. "And I think they know we are here." Zhayrald's eyes grew wide and he jumped from the cliff. He grabbed my hand and pulled me into his arms as he took off into the mountains. "What are you doing?" I asked.

"This will be faster; I'm not losing you in these mountains. I'm not losing you period," Zhayrald explained. "Once we get out of here, I want you to dive into the forest and head back to Arez. I'll stay here and hold them off."

"No!" I objected.

"Kalte, it's you they are after, not me."

"They probably want you too," I said, placing both of my hands on the side of his face, forcing him to look at me. Somehow he managed not to crash into the side of one of the mountains. "They know about the real painting, Zhay. They know you're involved. No one's getting left behind, and I am sure as hell not leaving you. If we fight, we fight together." Zhayrald sighed as my hands dropped from his face; he knew he wasn't going to win.

The mountains disappeared behind us and the rain began to fall as I flew from Zhayrald's arms. I looked back for a moment to find Itrantia and the Zlhorv army behind us. Well, I had never really had been chased by an army before, so this should be fun. There was a good possibility that I might die today. At least I got to kiss Zhayrald like that before I died. Zhayrald had already dived into the trees, and I was close behind.

"Itrantia's on our tail, and she brought her entire army," I told Zhayrald, flying up next to him.

"At least we know how to fly here," he said, smiling as he glanced at me. I smiled back and wheeled off to the right and into a thicker grove of trees, hoping to lose part of the army. No matter how thick the trees were, I always managed to keep an eye on Zhayrald. By the sound of it, we had already lost some of the soldiers to the trees. I was weaving in and out of the trees at my top speed, trying not to kill myself. Glancing backward, I saw Itrantia and her private force on my tail, my mother at the lead, smiling evilly at me. Now I knew where I got that smile from, and wasn't happy about it.

"You could always give up, Kaltezira," Itrantia called up to me.

"You could always go home," I snapped back, "and just leave me alone!" I flapped my wings faster, it that was possible, flying between the narrow gap between two trees. Using the short time of my enemy's temporary blindness, I dove through the canopy and into the open sky. I dove back through the leaves and Itrantia broke through the canopy. I continued this, losing more and more of her force and looking like a dolphin jumping through water while doing so. Finally, it was down to me and her, diving in and out of the trees like a pair of dolphins. I wove between trees as fast as I could, with Itrantia still on my tail, copying my every move. I had lost sight of Zhayrald a long time ago but I knew I wasn't going to lose her. It was going to come down to a fight between her and me, and I had a bad idea that it wasn't going to end well.

I found Zhayrald again then. He was outnumbered twenty to one in a fight with Itrantia's soldiers. He had both hands on the hilt of his sword while the soldiers stood around him. No one moved, but Zhayrald's eyes glanced from soldier to soldier, daring one of them to come at him. I landed behind him and pressed my back against his.

"I got your back," I whispered, drawing my sword.

"And I got yours," he answered as Itrantia dove into the clearing and landed in front of us.

"Okay, lovebirds, I'll make you a deal," Itrantia offered. I turned so I watched her but also kept my eye on the soldiers behind me. Zhayrald was glaring at Itrantia, waiting for her to continue. "Kaltezira comes with us, and the boy gets to live." Well, the situation was death for both of us either way, so we might as well go down fighting.

"Over my dead body," Zhayrald snarled.

"Are you sure you don't want to reconsider?" she asked. A low growl rolled through the clearing and a black wolf emerged from among the soldiers to stand next to Itrantia.

"Vdzr," Zhayrald growled under his breath, saying the name like it was a poison. Vdzr growled at Zhayrald, like they knew each other already. If that was true, I didn't want to know why.

"You still want to stay and defend your girlfriend, boy?" Itrantia asked, drawing her sword. Neither Zhayrald nor I moved. "So be it. You both will die, and Kaltezira's power will be mine."

"Over my dead body," I snarled.

"Gladly," my mother responded, smiling. All of the soldiers, Itrantia, and Vdzr came at us at once and I quickly lost Zhayrald in the confusion. And to make matters worse, no matter how hard I swung my sword, I could not even scratch Itrantia's soldiers. Something hard hit the back of my head, and I fell, landing face first in the damp grass, the rain landing softly on my wings. I heard Zhayrald call my name before darkness overcame me.


I woke up, probably a few hours later, with the feeling of sharp metal at my throat. I didn't bother to scream. I knew what was going on. That woman was low, resorting to dirty tricks like knocking me out and tying me up. I opened my eyes to find my mother smiling at me, evilly. Why hasn't they taken me back to Zlhorv yet? I glared back at her and then let my eyes scan the soldiers for Zhayrald. He had his hands pinned behind his back and a sword to his throat, like I did.

"What do you want, Itrantia?" I snarled. She just laughed.

"You know what I want," she answered. "Surrender and I might not kill your boyfriend." Shit. She hit me in sore spot. I had grown up thinking I had no weaknesses and here I was, my own life threatened and all I cared about was if Zhayrald lived, with or with out me. He was my weakness, my one and only weakness.

"Why haven't you bothered to take me back?" I asked, more like demanded. "You had me unconscious." Itrantia shrugged. This was probably some sort of torture, which it was. I only had one choice.

"If I go with you, you promise not to hurt him?" I sighed. Zhayrald looked at me, shock written across his face.

You're going to give up? His expression asked me. My gaze softened for a moment.

I don't want them to hurt you, I silently told him. He looked back at me, pleading that I didn't give up this easily. But he understood like he could read my mind or something.

"I promise," Itrantia answered, smiling. I could hear it in her voice, she was afraid of me. I think she knew I would kill myself on the spot if she killed Zhayrald. She knew now she had won, she had found my weakness and used it against me.

"I love you," Zhayrald mouthed as the soldiers got ready to lead me away, securing the bonds on my hands and my wings. "I'll come for you. I'll always be with you, never forget," he silently said.

"I love you too," I mouthed back, "and I'll never forget." Then the soldiers took off, dragging me with them. Why didn't they knock me out? I guess they just wanted to start my torture early. My heart shattered as I watched Zhayrald watch as they took me away. He looked so helpless, so heartbroken, like someone had shattered his heart into a million pieces. Decades of pain reflected in his eyes as he knew he couldn't do anything. With a hundred arrows aimed at him, he couldn't really do much except watch me being dragged away.

The thunder crashed in my ears and it started to pour. It wasn't the same gentle rain that fell the day Zhayrald and I flew in the rain. This rain hit my skin like a hundred nails, like the sky was crying for me. As Zhayrald disappeared from my sight, I couldn't tell if the water on my face was my tears or just the rain.

I really hope that didn't suck. But it broke my heart to write. Anyway, if we get up to 15 reviews, you get the next chapter! The green button needs friends! It won't bite you!

12. Chapter 11

Since I really have nothing to say....I'll answer some reviews!

InSaNe InSaNiTy: yes, that chapter was rather depressing....killed me to write..

IRuleThisWorldSoGetYourOwn: love your user name, btw! but anyway, yes, we have already established that Balvor=Jeb and I hate computer problems too.

Does Zhayrald remind anyone of a certain Flock member? It doesn't have to be personality...it can be description (hint hint).

WARNING: At the end, this chapter can be kind of gory. It's not EXTREME blood and guts, just a lot of blood.

The songs in this chapter are Nobody's Home by Avril Lavigne and Footprints in the Sand By Leona Lewis. Hope you like them!

Chapter Eleven: 730 Days of Hell

Once we had reached the castle, the soldiers tossed me in the dungeon, chaining my wings to the wall. This place was a dump and looked like it hadn't been used in a hundred years. Well there was no need for it then, but now they had a good reason to use it. I was a prisoner in my own world. I would rather be alone in another world than a prisoner in my own. I let myself drift to a restless sleep, getting back into the habit of waking up at every small noise. And so my torture began.

Every day after that was the same. Every morning I would wake up to the sound of my mother opening the damned wooden door. After she made sure that I wasn't going to fly out the window, which was about the size of my head, she unchained me so she could beat the crap out of me. Every time we fought, I continued to make the same mistakes, forcing old wounds open again. After every duel with her, I had a new bruise or cut, due to the fact that we used swords. Everyday, she would hold the sword to my throat again and again and continue to fight me until I was bleeding so bad that she would be forced to stop. Soon enough, I knew all of her moves and could defeat her with just the right amount of luck so I was forced to fight Vdzr.

Then Vdzr came with his whip. He strapped me to a freezing metal table and interrogated me about everything. Where Balvor was, how much I knew about the prophecy, how much I knew about my powers, how much I knew about other countries, and hundreds of other things. I never answered any of his questions with a direct answer. This pissed him off and everyday, he whipped me in a new place. It was my back, my gut, my sides, or my legs. He whipped me even when he wasn't asking a question; that was mostly on the days I got lucky and managed to defeat him. Once he got bored, he would just leave as if nothing happened.

I knew they were trying to break me. They wanted me to go crazy. I would gladly go crazy, but I would never be broken. They wanted me to lose control so that I would use the powers I didn't know I had.

At the end of every day, I got something to eat and I made another mark on my wall, one for everyday he didn't save me. He said he was gonna come for me, but he still hasn't. I can only wonder why.

I had managed to keep the music playing square from Itrantia and Vdzr. In my spare time, I scrolled through the songs, listening and finding myself singing along sometimes. I found one for almost every situation of my life, but one that fit me now as I was practically locked in a jail cell, where I knew I was going to die.

Well, I couldn't tell you

Why she felt that way? She felt it everyday

Why hadn't he come for me? The thought rang in my head every day, every time Itrantia's sword cut across my skin, every time Vdzr's whip ripped into my flesh.

And I couldn't help her

I just watched her make the same mistakes again

Everyday, Itrantia opened new wounds and reopened ones that had somehow managed to heal. I made the same mistakes over and over again: not moving my feet right, my grip on the sword not tight enough, my movements not strong enough.

What's wrong, what's wrong now?

Too many, too many problems

I had to worry about living to see the light of the next day, making sure Itrantia didn't kill me in my sleep. All of this was too much for me.

Don't know where she belongs

Where she belongs?

Was this supposed to mean something? Did I really belong here, or in Arez, the place that had felt like my first real home?

She wants to go home but nobody's home

That's where she lies

This isn't my real home. If it is, my family's not here. Ziaghra and Zhayrald and the people of Arez are my real family, not my damned mother and her crazy wolf-boy general.

Broken inside with no place to go

No place to go to dry her eyes

Broken inside

I had no where to go. If I ever made it out of here, I would just go live in the woods again and I would probably die out there.

Open your eyes

And look outside find the reasons why

You've been rejected

And now you can't find what you've left behind

Why had he not come for me? Had he forgotten about me? Had they all forgotten about me? Did they not want me or something? My mind raced through the possibilities.

Be strong, be strong now

Too many, too many problems

How can I be strong when I get one meal a day? Or when I have to worry about being killed in my sleep?! I have too many god damned problems. I have come close to having emotional breakdowns several times here. I hate feeling so weak, so powerless.

Don't know where she belongs

Where she belongs?

I want to go to where I belong, damn it. I want to fly back to Zhayrald and have him hold me in his arms again. I knew that's where I belonged.

She wants to go home but nobody's home

That's where she lies

Broken inside with no place to go

No place to go to dry her eyes

Broken inside

I am like dead here. I have nothing to live for. The only reason Itrantia keeps me alive is so she can steal my power when it revels itself, if it ever does.

Her feelings she hides, her dreams she can't find

She's losing her minds, she's fallen behind

And she can't find her place, she's losing her faith

She's fallen from grace, she's all over the place, yeah

Has Zhayrald given up on me? Will he ever come to save me? Do I even have any powers? Because if I don't I will be here forever and ever, waiting for Itrantia to realize that what she is looking for doesn't exist. Oh great, now tears are forming on the edges of my eyes. I have never cried, ever, but I think that record going to snap real soon.

She wants to go home but nobody's home

That's where she lies

Broken inside with no place to go

No place to go to dry her eyes

Broken inside

Damn, now I'm starting to remember why I started to hate this song like a week ago. I feel like a two year old, emotionally breaking down like this. I wasn't really having an emotional break down; I was just dying inside, slowly losing my self, my heart breaking more and more every day.

She's lost inside, lost inside

She's lost inside, lost inside

I'm losing my self, losing my way. I have no idea who the hell I am anymore, if I really still am Kaltezira, Blood Stars in Black Sky.


Right after I had left my mark on the wall one night, I hadn't bothered to count, it was somewhere around four hundred; I stretched my wings and wrapped them around me to keep me from freezing. Apparently, in this part of the world, they have this time of the year where white stuff falls from the sky and you feel like you have been turned into an ice cube. I hate it. I looked down at my left wing, something I didn't normally do, but I did anyway, and found something I hadn't seen before. My second to last feather had a pure white tip, just like in the prophecy painting, just like Zhayrald's. I smiled for the first time in a year and ran my fingers down the feather, making sure it was there. I wasn't dreaming; it was there. I had found myself again in that single feather. Maybe Zhayrald hadn't given up on me after all. The song on my music player changed again as I leaned against the cold stone wall.

You walked with me, footprints in the sand

And helped me understand where I'm going

Zhayrald helped me find myself when I thought I was going to lose it. He helped me understand where I belonged.

You walked with me, when I was all alone

With so much I know along the way

Then I heard you say

He held me close when I had no one to relate to, no one who could understand me. He managed to understand me perfectly.

I promise you, I'm always there

When your heart is full of sorrow and despair

I'll carry you when you need a friend

You'll find my footprints in the sand

He told me that I would never be alone anymore, that he would come back for me. This newly discovered white tipped feather replenished my faith in him, but how long would it be before I lost said faith and began to believe he would never come after me?

I see my life flash across the sky

So many times have I been so afraid

So many times, too many times for me to count, I thought I was going to die, to never see him again. I was afraid to die. I would kill me to leave him like that.

And just when I thought I lost my way

You gave me the strength to carry on

That's when I heard you say

It was like with this single feather, he was telling me that I shouldn't forget. This feather would give me the strength to wait until he came for me or until I could free myself from this hell.

I promise you, I'm always there

When your heart is full of sorrow and despair

I'll carry you when you need a friend

You'll find my footprints in the sand

When I'm weary, well, I know you'll be there

And I can hear you when you say

I promise you, I'm always there

When your heart is full of sorrow and despair

I'll carry you when you need a friend

You'll find my footprints in the sand

I promise you, I'm always there

When your heart is full of sorrow and despair

I'll carry you when you need a friend

You'll find my footprints in the sand

He is always going to be there for me. I am never really alone. I stroked the feather with my fingers, assuring myself that it was still there and not a hallucination. I would never be alone again.


Today, day 730, year three of hell's beginning, I woke up to the sound of Itrantia opening the wooden door again, but I also heard two set of footsteps. She brought Vdzr with her. She wasn't going to make me fight both of them, was she? I would be dead within five minutes.

"You're going to be fighting both me and Vdzr today," Itrantia said. She was crazy. A nineteen year old couldn't take a woman about forty and a dude with the ability to change into a wolf. I glared at her as she unchained my wings. I fell forward onto my hands once I was released from the wall, flapping my wings a couple times and glancing at my left wing to make sure the white tip was still there. I stood up and faced both of them, drawing my sword. The fights normally started like this, waiting for someone to make the first move. I growled, as if to tell them to hurry it up and kill me. Vdzr saw the meaning behind it and chuckled.

"You are my brother's daughter, Kaltezira," he told me, still chuckling, "brave and foolish in the face of danger." His brother's daughter…no…it couldn't be. I wouldn't accept it, even if he was lying to get me to start the fight.

"Liar," I snarled.

"Now, Kaltezira," Itrantia said, obviously playing along with Vdzr. "Be nice to your uncle." That did it. I dove for Vdzr, aiming my sword for his throat. He morphed into the giant black wolf in midair, aiming for my head. Itrantia blocked the move from my sword and swung hers towards my shoulder. I had to settle for ducking under Vdzr's fangs, sending him soaring over my back and almost running into the near by wall, and making sure I didn't get my arm chopped off.

We fought in this fashion for half an hour, neither of my opponents getting tired. I was covered in bite marks and a new series of gashes while neither had more than a scratch. Rage was fueling me now, and that's what they wanted. This was obviously another attempt at getting me to release my powers.

After an hour, I was ready to pass out, not from blood loss, but from exhaustion. How long did they think I would keep this up? As Vdzr dug his teeth into my shoulder for the fifth time, something in me exploded. I felt a new wave of energy hit me; I didn't feel the pain anymore. If this was what getting your power felt like, I was doomed. I couldn't let Itrantia and Vdzr get their hands on my power. I felt my power now; it was a part of me as much as my wings now. I grabbed my power and wrapped its source around my beating heart. If they wanted my power, they were going to have to kill me and it was coming with me.

"Finally," Itrantia murmured from under me. Talk about awkward. Somehow, I had managed to pin both Itrantia and Vdzr, holding my sword to Itrantia's throat and my free hand gripped around Vdzr's neck. Vdzr had a gash in his side, the blood dripping to the floor and his paws struggling to get a grip the stone floor. He morphed back, the wound healing itself and slipping from my grasp. I stood up, releasing Itrantia, only to be knocked back down by Vdzr before I could react. I heard something snap, and an intense pain shot up my left leg. Next thing I knew, I was strapped to my best friend, the cold metal table, stomach down. I knew I wouldn't be able to break the bonds, but I tried anyway. I wasn't going to die without a fight. Itrantia's sword dug itself into my right arm and I took a deep breath and pressed my teeth together as I felt it bury itself in the bone. I had learned not to let them know I was in pain.

I heard the guards outside loosen their bows at something. I didn't really care. It wouldn't be the first time those guards at a bird for fun and got my hopes up that someone was here to save me.

"Your powers will be mine own soon enough," Itrantia said, pulling the sword from my arm. "Are you ready to die?" she asked me.

"I'm not gonna die," I snarled back. "And if I do, you won't get my powers, I'll make sure of it."

"Sure, sure you will," she replied, smiling evilly. I felt the cold of her sword against the flesh of my back. "Let's see your precious Zhayrald try to save you now." She drew the sword across my back and I almost lost control as I felt its edge slice through the muscles of my back. My back felt soaked with my blood instantly. I heard the wall of the dungeon explode and nothing more, letting unconsciousness consume me for the last time. I knew I was going to die and I wasn't afraid. I clung to my memories two years old and never let them go.

Was anyone depressed after reading that? Because I was after writing it! Anyway, if you press that button, the little green one, you get to know what happens next! So press it!

13. Chapter 12

Hey, everyone. I'm gonna say right now that the next two chapters aren't as long as the past two, but they are important and chapter fourteen is like my longest chapter ever!

InSaNe InSaNiTy- you cried at the end of that? then you are going to cry at the end of this.....i am really sorry i am making you cry so much...and sorry for making you wait for so long..:)

Can I ask for like three reviews before the next chapter? I'll give you all a preview of the sequal(which is almost done!) if we get up to twenty reviews! If my record of 26 reviews for a story is broken, you'll get a preview of the 3rd story(which hasn't stopped playing in my head).

EDIT: Okay, I lied. My record for number of reviews for a single story is 63 (the record held by It's Only The Beginning, a IggyxOC story. It's not my best, but I think its good...kinda. no it really sucks. i didn't even bother to edit it so there are a lot of errors. yeah. it's bad.). But if I get 26 for this story, I will be very happy and still give you guys that preview.

Chapter Twelve: Fire and Ice

Death was surprisingly warm. I thought that death would be something cold that I wasn't going to welcome, but I welcomed it. I felt myself…regaining consciousness? I thought I was dead. How could I not be dead? Itrantia sliced my back wide open! Maybe, this was all an illusion. Nope, the searing pain running down my back and my left leg could not be some illusion. Neither was my heart beat or the sound of my breathing.

How could I be alive? No one was there to save me…except…whoever exploded the wall right before I passed out and whoever the guards were firing arrows at. But who in their right mind would…Zhayrald. Maybe, just maybe, he had actually come back for me after two years.

I pulled my eyes open and looked at the ceiling for a moment. Every part of my body felt like it was on fire, not in a positive way. Every heart beat, every breath, caused me pain. It wasn't the heartbroken pain I had felt for the past two years, this time it was physical pain. I felt the bandages restricting my every move. The pain and restriction increased as I pulled myself up onto my elbows. As I pushed myself into a very painful sitting position, my eyes wondered. This room I didn't remember, considering I had no idea which city I was in. No one had bothered to change my destroyed jeans from two years ago, but my torn black shirt had been replaced with a simple white tank top. Bandages covered my arms, legs, back, and stomach entirely. I could probably count on one hand the places without bandages, my face being one of them. I felt my wings hanging limply on my back, I could move them but the movement came with a blinding pain shot up my back. I stopped dead as I felt someone staring at me.

I knew who it was without turning around. His eyes haunted my dreams every night, every word he ever said to me echoed in my ears. As I heard him come closer to me, I stared at the wall, clenching and unclenching my fists in my lap. The simple action was the only thing keeping me from hitting him when he kneeled down beside the bed I sat on.

"Why didn't you come?" I asked my words cracking and my voice hoarse. I hadn't heard my own voice without it being a threat in years. The last kind words I had spoken had most likely been directed at the nineteen year old boy sitting next to me. Zhayrald chuckled and ran his fingers through my brittle, knotted hair.

"I have my reasons," Zhayrald said, his breath hot on the side of my face. "And I'll tell you but you have to promise you won't incinerate me first."

"What are you talking about?" I asked him. I looked down at my hands and would have jumped back like five feet if the attempt didn't make my back feel like it was going to rip open. "Holy shit!" I screamed. I slowly opened my fist again in front of my face, watching it closely. When my hand opened, a small ball of flame hovered above my hand. I felt no heat on the palm of my hand, and it didn't burn my fingers as I examined it with my free hand. It disappeared without a trace and then returned, as if I controlled it. Was this my power?

"Damn, how are you doing that?" Zhayrald asked me.

"I have no idea," I whispered. "It's like I control it or something."

"Anyway, do you want me to tell you or not?" I nodded silently as I tossed the fire between my hands, amazed. "Well, after they took you, I sat up in here for about a week. I did nothing except think about how I was going to get you back. Then I just decided to storm the place. I flew over there and flew in at about midday. It was stupid of me. Every guard on that wall fired at me at the same time. I couldn't dodge them all. I got hit with a lot of them. One buried itself in the bone of my forearm and another two hit my wing." A silence followed and I glanced over at him, careful not to meet his eyes. He had taken his shirt off to reveal several scars along his side, back and arms and his bare chest. I looked away, feeling my cheeks grow red under the veil of hair that hid my face.

"I flew back here, recovered and set back out," Zhayrald continued. "This time, I was smarter. I stayed in the forest around the city and watched the guards. It took me just about two years to know where they were and when. Then I knew I could get in when the watches switched. I told you never to forget that I was going to come for you." He placed his hand under my chin and began turning my face so I would look at him.

"Well, that was kinda hard," I snapped, ripping away from his grip. "I kinda had to worry about making sure that I lived to see the light of the next day. And I don't really want to go into that."

"I know you don't," Zhayrald said, brushing a portion of hair out of my face and tucking it behind my ear. "Do you want to know what happened after you passed out?" How did he know that I was gonna ask that? Maybe he was a mind reader or something. I nodded slowly. "So after I exploded the wall…"

"How'd you do that?" I asked him. He probably just used a hand grenade or something.

"You aren't the only one with powers, ya know," he replied. "I can move things with my mind. And I also know that your wondering how I knew you were gonna ask me what happened after you passed out and all of those unpleasant memories that you don't wanna share. I don't really want to see them anymore either."

"Mind reader," I murmured. Zhayrald chuckled.

"But anyway," he continued. "After the wall exploded, I accidently trapped Vdzr under a ton of rocks. I knocked out Itrantia and turned to you." Zhayrald shuddered at the memory. "I thought I was too late, Kalte. I thought you were dead," he whispered. He put his hands on my shoulders and gently turned me so that I was forced to face him and look into his ice blue eyes. My eyes dampened as I saw all of pain in his eyes from that memory and my breath caught in my throat.

"Itrantia had done a good job of cutting you open. She sliced through all the muscle in your back and once I saw your heart, I knew I wasn't too late. I saw your heart beating," he murmured, placing his hand over my beating heart.

"It was glowing with a fiery red light with every beat. You wrapped your powers around it didn't you?" I knew he knew the answer but I nodded anyway. Zhayrald smiled and continued.

"So I held the gash in your back together while and after I untied you and I flew back as fast as I could. Ziaghra and Arez's best healers worked on you for a day. I just sat outside the room and waited. I kept thinking that if you died, that it would have been my fault. But they bandaged you up and stitched your back together, and you seem fine to me."

"How long was I out?" I asked.

"Um…it was a week about four days ago," Zhayrald told me. Damn, I didn't even know I could sleep that long.

"And no one's come to try and kill me?"

"Nope, Itrantia and Vdzr got their own wounds to heal." I chuckled and Zhayrald pulled me off the bed and into his lap, careful not to move my leg. "So what am I going to do with you since you can't even stand up?"

"Love me and let us save the world however we are supposed to," I said with a smile, wrapping my good arm around his neck.

"For you, Kaltezira, I think I can manage that," he answered, gently placing a hand on the small of my back and wrapping the other in my hair as he gently pressed his lips against mine, but only for a minute. ((AN: I almost ended it here. ALMOST.)) Wow, I haven't seen him in two years and then he doesn't even bother to really kiss me, or give me the chance to kiss him back. I know it sounded really dumb and really selfish, but you would feel the same if you were in my place. Zhayrald chuckled and smiled at me.

"What? What's so funny?" I asked, confused.

"You, you crazy girl," Zhayrald replied, gently poking me in my stomach, causing me to giggle. "After listening to your thoughts for over a week, I still can't understand you. You're a very complex person, yet at times, so easy to understand." I was going to have to get used to the whole 'my boyfriend can read my mind and I can't do a thing about it' thing. Oh crap, he can hear all of these thoughts, can't he? I really should stop thinking now. Zhayrald laughed again and kissed the top of my head.

"You heard all of that, didn't you?" I asked.

"Yup, and a lot more while you were unconscious," he said. "Don't worry, it wasn't that bad. Mostly memories, mostly memories from the past two years." I shuddered. I hated those memories and had never wanted him to see them. There was so much, too much, pain in those memories for him to handle in my eleven days of unconsciousness. I could barely handle them in seven hundred and twenty days.

"I'm sorry," I whispered, resting my head on his shoulder.

"Don't be," Zhayrald reassured me. "It was partly my fault. I was curious. I know how to shut it off, or mute it. I was just curious and bit off more than I could chew." I nodded and rested my chin on his shoulder, looking into his eyes. Zhayrald smiled at me again and kissed my forehead, placing me on the bed before standing up and crossing the room.

"What are you doing?" I asked him.

"Figured you were hungry," he answered, tossing me an apple. Where he had gotten it, I didn't know, or really care.

"Why didn't you just use your other powers?" I asked. Zhayrald shrugged.

"I'm not very good at them yet," he explained. "I wouldn't want to knock you out for another week because I hit you in the head with an apple." I chuckled at the thought and nodded in agreement.

"Hey, Zhay," I said.

"What?" he asked me.

"You don't figure," I said, biting into the apple, "you know."

"Exactly," Zhayrald agreed. "You're getting used to this rather quick." I shrugged as I bit into the apple again. It tasted so much better than the stale bread, soup, and water I had been living off of for the past two years.

I'm sure it wasn't that bad. Stale bread actually tastes quite good after a while. What the hell was that?! Did I magically get voices in my head or something? I looked around the room and found Zhayrald grinning at me, as he lay on the bed behind me.

"Was that you?" I asked, amazed again.

Yeah, Zhayrald answered, his voice ringing in my head.

Is this what you meant by you would always be with me? I thought, knowing he would hear me.

I didn't know it, but yes, he told me, pulling me down so that I was lying on the bed beside him. This connection between us amazed me. Despite being apart for two years, the connection was extremely strong, it always had been.

I'm afraid if we keep talking this way, I'll forget how to talk, I thought. Zhayrald chuckled and kissed my cheek.

"I prefer talking this way more too," he whispered in my ear. I smiled as I rested my head on his chest, falling into a peaceful sleep.

Review! You know you want to!

14. Chapter 13

This chapter isn't very long, but it's very important. so yeah....

EdwardCullenIsCoolerThanYou- your screen name rocks! GO TWILIGHT! (if vanessa wats-her-face plays leah, i'm going to be mad.) anyway, loved your review! it made me smile (but sorry about all of your problems. *hugs*). and it also reminded me that i should point out something.


Chapter Thirteen: All Seems Safe As the Wounds Heal

I woke up the next morning with my head rested on Zhayrald's chest. I looked up to find him looking down at me with his crystal blue eyes, not much of a surprise.

"You've been unconscious for over a week and you still manage to sleep?" he asked.

"I haven't slept decently in two years, the past week excluded," I told him. "Gimme a break."

"I would, but I forgot to mention yesterday that my mother wanted to see you when you woke up and you forgot to mention this." Zhayrald gently pulled on my left wing and pulled my white tipped feather into view.

"I knew I was forgetting something," I muttered. Zhayrald chuckled and partially spread his left wing to reveal a blood red wing tip, exactly like mine. I smiled and stroked it with my hand. Zhayrald's lips were upturned into a smile as he kissed the top of my head and picked me up bridal style, being extremely careful of my broken leg. He didn't even have to let go of me to open the door. His powers were going to take some getting used to. Silently, he walked down the hallway, playing with the ends of my hair with the tips of his fingers. I felt his presence in my mind although he was silent. He stopped in front of a closed door and tapped the door frame with his foot.

"This had better be important, Zhayrald," Ziaghra's voice said, coming from inside. "If you've come to worry about how Kaltezira hasn't woken up yet, then leave. The girl will wake up when she's good and ready." I had to stick my fist in my mouth to keep myself from laughing at the irony.

"But she did wake up, Mother," Zhayrald replied.

"Then why didn't you say so?!" Ziaghra asked from inside. This time I laughed freely. "When did she wake up?"

"About an hour ago," Zhayrald lied.

"Liar," she accused. "She woke up yesterday." Was his mother a mind reader too? "Whatever, it doesn't matter," Ziaghra said, opening the door. "And you carried her down here?! You could have just left her in your room and come down to get me." I was in Zhayrald's room the entire time?! Well that was just plain embarrassing. "Well, at least put her down while you go back up to your room to put a shirt on," Ziaghra told Zhayrald.

"But, Mother," Zhayrald protested.

"Just do it. She'll be fine for all of five minutes," Ziaghra told him. Zhayrald reluctantly put me down so I stood against the wall and turned back in the way we came, walking back towards his room. "That boy sure is a piece of work," Ziaghra said, talking to me like I had never left.

"He sure is," I agreed, smiling. Ziaghra rolled her eyes at me and I chuckled.

"I'm surprised he even remembered to bring you down here," she told me, beginning to unravel the bandages on my arms where the cuts weren't that deep. "He stayed up in his room for weeks before he finally went after you. He kept muttering, 'It's my fault, damn it. If she dies, it's my fault.' But if he asks, you didn't hear it from me." I chuckled again and nodded. The last of the bandages that had encircled my arms had fallen away to reveal countless new scars of various sizes. At the top of my right arm, the three inch gash from where Itrantia buried her sword in my arm was still healing, but the bone didn't feel broken anymore. I had always healed fast; I guess it was an avian thing.

"What did I miss?" Zhayrald asked, suddenly appearing next to me. Did he have this other power where he could appear out of nowhere? For all I knew, he could have.

"Nothing, nothing at all," I told him. I felt his fingers slide down my arm, hesitating at the partially healed gash on my forearm.

"You heal fast," he commented.

"I always have," I replied.

"I meant you heal faster than normal," Zhayrald explained. Well, that didn't make much sense. Maybe healing was my other power. If Zhayrald had two powers, wouldn't it make sense that I had two, too?

"Are you two going to hang out in the hall all day?" Ziaghra asked from her room. Zhayrald picked me up and walked into the room. "Kalte, you want him in here?" she asked me. "'Cause I'm gonna need to take off your tank top so we can take the bandages off your back."

"I don't care. He can leave if he wants," I said. Zhayrald shut the door behind him as he put me down; I assumed that meant he was staying. I shrugged and pulled my tank top off over my head and placed one hand on the wall to keep my weight off my bad leg. Zhayrald placed his hand over mine and smiled down at me as Ziaghra cut the bandages off my back with a simple hunting knife. The simple motion reminded me of the day Zhayrald and I met how he had almost kissed me in front of the entire city on top of a watch tower. I looked up to meet Zhayrald's eyes, smiling, and I saw that he remembered too, seeing the memory flash in my mind.

"Kaltezira, you never cease to surprise me," Ziaghra whispered as the last of the bandages fell away. At least she was smart and had tied my bra under those bandages.

"What?" Zhayrald asked, taking his hand off mine and walking around to stand next to his mother.

"Itrantia managed to slice her open all the way to the bone, there is no way possible that the wound could have managed to heal already," Ziaghra said.

"What?" I asked, looking over my shoulder, just to see them staring at me, Ziaghra in wonder, Zhayrald in awe.

"The skin's healed itself already, but there is no guarantee that the muscle has fully healed," Zhayrald said, running a finger down my spine. I felt the raised skin that was there, the place where I had felt Itrantia's blade cold on my back about two weeks ago. I heard Ziaghra's knife cut through something, and my skin crawled. I knew what she was doing when she was about half way done. She was pulling out the string she had stitched my back up with, since I had no more need for it. I shuddered when she was done.

"That was weird," I commented. Zhayrald chuckled and walked around so that he faced me again. Ziaghra tossed me my tank top, which I caught and quickly pulled over my head, glad to be free of the bandages.

"I know for a fact that your leg hasn't healed yet, so just keep off it, okay?" she told me. I smiled and nodded. Zhayrald's eyes lost focus for a moment and then ran to the window. He looked panicked. I feared the worst. "What is it, Zhayrald?" Ziaghra asked as he walked past her. Zhayrald remained silent. "Stars in Moonless Night, you will tell me what is going on. Now," Ziaghra demanded, using Zhayrald's real name.

"It's Itrantia," he said, throwing the window open, fear leaking from his voice. "She's brought the entire Zlhorv army and she's here to finish what she started."

Ziaghra was out of the room in an instant, shouting orders in a panicked fashion. Zhayrald looked at me for only a moment, and in the next I was in his arms.

"I'm not gonna let her get you again," he said, running down the hall towards his room. "I'm going out there to meet the army, and you are going to stay here."

"No," I objected as he set me down on his bed. Déjà vu, this was just like the small fight, well more of a disagreement, we had had two years ago when Itrantia came after us.

"Kalte, you can barely walk," he pointed out. I could tell he was getting annoyed.

"So? I got my powers, my sword, and my wings," I retorted. Why were we arguing? He could hear everything in my mind.

"I'm not letting her get you again!" he shouted at me, grabbing my shoulders. I saw all of the pain from the past two years in his eyes. It made me want to cry. He wrapped his arms around me and buried his face in my hair. He looked up after a moment and I could see the tears in his eyes. I didn't have to have his power to know what he was thinking. This could easily be the last time we held each other in our arms.

"I love you, Zhayrald," I whispered, wrapping my arms around his neck and pulling him closer to me. Then I realized something, something important. That was the first time I had said those words, out loud that is, unless I said it in my sleep.

"I love you too, Kaltezira," he replied. He pressed his lips to mine, moving them gently against my own. He ended the kiss just as I wrapped my hand in his hair. "Just promise me that you won't leave this room and do something stupid."

"I can't promise you that. I'll go crazy. But for you, I'll try," I answered. Zhayrald smiled and kissed my forehead as he stood. He watched me the entire time he walked to the window, his eyes full of regret as he jumped out the window and towards the fight.

It wasn't even five minutes before I considered breaking my promise. Breaking said promise was practically impossible since I couldn't stand. I knew I had to do something; this was the battle laid out in the prophecy, I was sure of it. I couldn't just stand by and watch while thousands died for me. A new heat rushed through me now, similar to the one that I had felt before Itrantia had sliced open my back. I knew what I had to do.

I stood up, finding to my surprise that my once broken leg now supported my weight. I smiled triumphantly and ran towards the window. I jumped, letting my sore wings joyfully catch the increasing wind and carry me towards Arez's wall under a dark sky, where the city's army, and Zhayrald, waited for Zlhorv to attack. Zhayrald, finding my familiar thoughts in my mind, noticed me first.

What the hell are you doing here? I consider this something stupid and it hasn't even been five minutes yet! He asked.

I know what I'm doing. But you have to trust me on this, I replied. You and the rest of the army only attack on my signal, got it?

I trust you, Zhayrald sighed. I chuckled as I landed on the wall next to him. He smiled as he pressed his lips into my hair, now being wildly tossed by the wind. Silently, I unbelted my sword and pressed it into his hands.

"I'm not going to need it," I said, meeting his eyes. He opened his mouth to object but I pressed my lips to his, which shut him up quick. You said you trusted me. I reminded him.

And I mean it but if anyone lays a finger on you, I'm coming after you, Zhayrald told me, kissing me back. I smiled against his lips and jumped off the wall. The army waiting at the wall cheered as if I was some sort of hero going to lead them to victory. Who knew, maybe if this prophecy thing was right, I was.

Fly fast, my Blood Stars in Black Sky, Zhayrald thought. I smiled as I dove into the forest below.

Fly high, my Stars in Moonless Night, I answered, Watch over my heart, I left it with you. (sound familiar?)

Free cookies to whoever Zhayrald reminds you of! You can get a plushie if you guess what aspects of Max Ride and Twilight I can describe this story with....(you really don't get a plushie...because if you could...i would have like a million.) Anyway, if you review, Zhayrald might live to see the next chapter. *has Zhayrald tied to a chair and laughs evilly*

Remember: 20 reviews=preview of sequel

26-30 reviews=preview of third book

so review if you want Zhay to live and for the previews! *more evil laughter*

15. Chapter 14

Longest chapter in the story! Whoo! All of the Twilight references (theres like 5...i think.) belong to Sephenie Meyer! although i wish they were mine....

I got twenty reviews! you know what that means! Here is a portion of the sequel Tames the Wolf that my sister wrote for me. She's really good at writing this sort of stuff.

My wings beat against my sides, my eyes flicking back and forth. My whole body was tense, and I knew I couldn't relax. My heart thumped in my chest, and a cold sweat was breaking out on my forehead. If I failed, I would never live with myself.

Fear and nervousness pricked at me, but I kept going. I couldn't fail her. Not now.

Suddenly, my ears picked up the almost silent hiss of arrows, and I whirled around in the air…

Just in time for the arrows to hit me full in the chest.

I had no time to react, no time to attempt to defect them as they thunked against my flesh and pain flashed across every cell in my body. More arrows buried themselves in my skin, two pierced my left wing, and one sunk into the bone of my forearm, sending a fresh wave of pain rippling across my body. My sight was winking out, and the city below was becoming darker…

"No," I hissed through gritted teeth.

I felt warm blood pouring from where the arrows embedded themselves in my flesh. I couldn't keep going.

"I'm so sorry, Kaltezira," I murmured, and felt my wings fold onto my back.

I spiraled toward the ground, but I couldn't see if I was heading towards the inside of the city or if I was going to fall straight into the trees. Wind whipped at my face, pulling at every part of my body. Pain flitted through my senses. A cry of surprise and anguish escaped my lips…

My eyes snapped open, and I saw the wall of the city speeding towards me. I tried to pull out my wings, but my body hit the stone of the wall. I screamed from the pain, and arrow shafts snapped off, the heads digging deeper into my skin.

I tumbled over the wall, falling to the ground. I couldn't see, I couldn't hear, and all I felt was the pain that stabbed at me like a thousand knives.

I hit the ground with a wet thud, sending even more pain through my body. Just as I was about to sink into unconsciousness, I choked out, "Forgive me," through a mouthful of my own blood. I fell, almost happily, into darkness.

Hope you guys liked it! And enjoy this chapter!

Chapter Fourteen: Through the Fire and the Flames

As I wove through the trees, the heat burning in my very core burned hotter and with a greater intensity with every heartbeat as my second unknown power spread throughout my body. Every second, I knew it was closer to taking control. I didn't know when I would succumb to the power, but I knew I would soon. I heard Vdzr howl a challenge to the army of Arez, and I fell victim to the power.

I tucked in my wings and gracefully landed on the forest floor, running now to the army of Zlhorv. The fire that controlled this new power, this new side of me, spread throughout my body. I heard my bones shift and morph as a pain run up my spine. As the fire changed my entire being my clothes melted into my skin and the fire just grew stronger. A wild shudder passed through my body and suddenly, I didn't feel human anymore. I was running too fast on all fours, my senses were just too sharp, and I was pretty sure humans didn't have fur. Did I have the same power as Vdzr?

Stopping in a small clearing, I ran in a circle around my self. Hell, yeah. I was a wolf. My fur was just as black as the wings that still protruded from my shoulders and my paws and the tip of my tail were the same deep red.

I let out a long howl that echoed in the dark sky, knowing I was between the armies. Arez would think it was Vdzr trying to annoy them and Zhayrald would know it was my signal, and Vdzr would be extremely confused and lead his army here. I smiled as well as a wolf could and slunk into the shadows at the clearing's edge to watch every thing come together.

Everything came together perfectly, faster than I had anticipated. A large white wolf burst into the clearing first, looking around, a mad rage in his black eyes. Then came Vdzr and the Zlhorv army. Vdzr growled at the white wolf, obviously recognizing him. Then his voice sounded in my mind, so suddenly that I almost jumped back.

Why are you howling like the coward you are, Balvor? Vdzr snarled. Balvor? The white wolf was Balvor…my father?

I think the question is why are you howling like the power hungry fool you are? Balvor snapped back. The Arez army emerged behind Balvor, Zhayrald and Ziaghra in the lead. They obviously recognized Balvor, because they didn't attack him. Each army stared the other down, waiting for one to attack. I wanted to warn Zhayrald, but if I did, Balvor and Vdzr would hear me, ruining the surprise attack.

All we want is your freak of a daughter, Vdzr snarled, just hand her over and we might consider not killing the boy. He pointed his muzzle at Zhayrald and I held back a snarl.

Never, Balvor and Zhayrald snarled at the same time.

Then I guess we are just going to have to rip you to pieces until the girl revels herself, Vdzr growled, Itrantia joining him at his side, her sword in hand. Zhayrald pulled out his own white blade, and my red one.

So you do know where she is? Vdzr asked, advancing on Zhayrald once he recognized my sword. No doubt, you know where she is too, he accused Balvor. I saw Vdzr's muscles tense as he prepared to spring at Zhayrald.

I have no idea where she is. Last time I saw her, she dove into the forest, Zhayrald said. I was only fifty feet away from him, hiding in the shadows. I wondered why he hadn't asked where I was in my mind. Maybe he feared the wolves hearing him, or he was just preoccupied.

I haven't seen her in two years, Balvor explained. Vdzr growled, disgusted and annoyed.

Fine then, I'm just going to have to kill you both. Maybe if I do it slow enough, you'll talk. Vdzr said. As his muscles tensed again to leap at Zhayrald, a low growl ripped through the trees. It took me a moment to figure out it came from me. Everyone looked around, trying to pinpoint the growl. Vdzr and Balvor looked right at me, without knowing it since I saw no recognition in their eyes. They just stared into the trees, their fur glued to their skin.

Thunder roared in the sky and rain came down like it was being poured out of an endless bucket. How ironic. A fight was about to begin, probably the biggest battle in the history of ever, and it was in the middle of a thunderstorm.

Over. My. Dead. Body (AN: Does this line ring any bells?) , I snarled, stepping into the clearing. The sheets of rain stuck my fur to my skin instantly and I felt thousands of eyes on me at once as I strode across the clearing. I glared at Vdzr the entire time, my lips curled upwards in a silent snarl, exposing my fangs.

No one recognized me. How could they? The dark sky and my wet fur hid the blood red portions of my fur, and my wings were hidden under my fur. I stopped in front of Zhayrald, tensing my muscles, ready to move if Vdzr made any sudden movements towards anyone. I didn't look back at Zhayrald, but I knew he was in shock, knowing that I was…well, me.

Lay a claw on him, and I will personally rip your throat out and use it to kill the rest of your army, I threatened, no hint of a bluff shining in my eyes.

I'd like to see you try, Vdzr sneered. I growled.

No, Kaltezira, Balvor cautioned as I took a step towards Vdzr, ready to jump on him and rip his throat out. I growled again but didn't move forward. One move could set off both of these armies.

Isn't that what we are waiting for? Someone to start this fight? I asked.

Yes, but can't you see that this is what Vdzr is trying to get you to do? He is using Zhayrald against you so that you start the battle and he doesn't have to. Wait for him to start it. I nodded. I didn't really like the plan, but if it kept me, and more importantly Zhayrald, alive, then it worked for me. We stood there for the longest time, glaring at each other, growling, waiting for someone to start this. It reminded me of all the staring contests me and Vdzr had had, waiting for the other to attack.

What are you waiting for, Vdzr? I asked, cocking my head to one side like the curious dog I was. Can't you start your own fights for once? Do we have to show you how to do everything? Next, do you want me to teach you how to tie your shoes? With a snarl, he pounced, aiming for my throat. Balvor leaped at him, intercepting him in mid-air, and the battle began. I whirled around, searching for Itrantia.

Zhay, do you have any idea where Itrantia is? I asked, my eyes scanning the area. The two armies had collided already, but the Zlhorv army wasn't even getting injured by anything. It looked like swords and arrows bounced off their skin. I bet my left wing that Itrantia had something to do with it.

Not a clue, but don't go after her if you find her. That bitch is mine, Zhayrald snarled. I rolled my eyes and instead, started attacking soldiers, randomly. I couldn't get within an inch of their skin. It was pissing me off.

Balvor, is it just me or can we not hurt them?

It's Itrantia. Her and her damned shield powers are doing this.

How are we supposed to get through it? Zhayrald asked. He appeared beside me now, a sword in each hand.

As far as I know, her shield as one weakness.

Well, tell us! I shouted.

But, Kaltezira, you already know it, he replied. This was not the time to let me figure out my own problems. This was life or death!

Damn it, Balvor, just tell me!

Nope. Why did he always have to be complicated? Okay, I already knew it. What could it be?

"Kalte, it's your other power!" Zhayrald said, looking down at me. Then it clicked. Why else would Itrantia want my power so bad besides to let herself control it? Because it was the only thing that her shields didn't deflect! But, I had learned of the power only yesterday, how was I supposed to take out an army with it? Could I even use it in this form? Damn, why did every thing have to be so hard?

I have an idea, but it's risky and might not work, I told Zhay. He read it in my mind and nodded, taking off. Balvor heard it too and ran in the direction he had come. I took off, my now larger wings carrying me over the fighting. Apparently, Balvor and Vdzr couldn't fly, because I heard their silent shock ring through their minds.

The Arez army was pulling back separating itself from the Zlhorv army. If this worked, they would only have seconds to attack before Itrantia pulled her shield around her army again. I saw Vdzr smile triumphantly.

That's right. Retreat fools, he sneered. It was my turn to laugh internally. What are you laughing at, Kaltezira?

This, I said, landing. I had all of my energy focused when my front paws touched the ground. As soon as they did, a huge wave of fire erupted and engulfed the Zlhorv army. The army of Arez ran around me, like water flowing past a rock and attacked the enemy army. I was even surprised when the fire managed to live with all the rain that still fell from the sky.

I ran forward, sinking my fangs into the first Zlhorv soldier that got in my way. I smiled as evilly as a wolf could when he fell to the ground, dead. Zhayrald glanced over at me, and I saw fear in his eyes as I grinned at him, blood dripping from my fangs. He had never seen me like this before, this wild side of me. I laughed at his expression, internally of course, and dove back into the battle.

Eventually, more like after five minutes, we reached a point where we could no longer harm the soldiers again. Damn Itrantia and her stupid shield. This was madness. All of it. Maybe if I stayed in the forest where I belonged, this would never be happening.

Don't say that, Kaltezira, Zhayrald said. This is where you belong.

Thanks, Zhay, but there has got to be someway to stop this. We'll be here for the rest of our lives if this continues. I thought of a way, but it seemed too risky, too vulnerable, too complicated.

I think that will work, Zhayrald told me. But how will you get back into your human form?

That's the major complication. The second is if they will listen to reason. Or maybe…nah, I have to be the one to say it. It would be weird if I used you as my mouthpiece. Zhayrald chuckled. I tried to cool the fire that burned in my veins, the one that kept me in this form, but in the heat of the battle, despite the cool rain dripping off my back, I couldn't. Damn, this was going to be harder than I thought.

Zhay, could you project my voice into everyone's mind?

Probably, he answered.

Good, I replied. I took off into the sky again, and the Arez army pulled back again, the Zlhorv army not falling for it this time. They stuck together like glue. I guess I had to do everything myself. I landed between the two armies, like last time. Only now I threw up walls of fire between them, pulling the armies apart. This was the only way they would listen, if they were going to like it or not.

Okay, I got you in everyone's head, even Itrantia's, surprisingly. Zhayrald told me. I nodded. Did I engulf the enemy army in fire and then make the wall so that Zhayrald could get into everyone's mind? Obviously…

This is MADNESS! (AN: NO! THIS IS SPARTA! im sorry i couldn't help myself...im going to be quiet now...)I shouted. The two armies either winced from the pain, looked around in confusion, wondering where the hell the voice in their head was coming from, or both. Down here, you idiots! Everyone looked at me, probably waiting for me to tackle them one by one and rip their throats out. Someone, tell me why we were here? Why are we fighting this war?

"'Cause Itrantia told us to come here and kill you," a familiar voice said from the ranks of the Zlhorv army. I turned to find Ryzarn, the guard that found me the day I arrived in Zlhorv and had been my first real friend, smiling at me as he stepped closer to the wall of fire.

Besides the obvious reasons, I joked. We are here because Itrantia wants to rule the world and destroy life as we know it. My mother, if I could even call her that, glared at me, and I smiled as well as I could back. Don't you realize why we are all here?! We are here just because there are two cities in our part of the world! That is the DUMBEST reason to start a war in the history of EVER! We live our way, you live your way and we are all happy. That seems about right to me. But, no, we have to go into war just to ensure we see the light of the next day while you guys try to take over the world. Have fun trying to take over a world you can't even get to. But back to the point, I said.

"Is there any point?" Itrantia asked, annoyed from my little rant, and still glaring at me.

Yes, and I was just getting to it. We are all fighting each other, killing our own kind for no REAL reason. We are fighting our families, our friends, the ones we love here. All for no real reason. Give me one good reason, Itrantia, for why you started this war, and I will lower these walls and make sure that Zhayrald personally rips your throat out while I watch.

All was silent for what was probably the longest minute of my life. I lowered the wall in front of the Arez army, trusting they wouldn't do something stupid. As I glared at Itrantia, waiting for an answer, I watched her eyes glance at Balvor, then at me, then Zhayrald, and back at me. I swear she even glanced at Ziaghra. She was considering what I had said, carefully. Balvor padded up next to me, watching Itrantia.

You did well, he told me, 'Cause that's exactly who she's fighting here.

You lost me, I said, confused.

You and I are her family, she loves us, Balvor explained. I don't have to be a mind reader to know that deep down she loves us. Ziaghra used to be her best friend and she sees without a doubt the love between you and Zhayrald. It reminds her of her and me, before all of this started. I couldn't imagine Itrantia and Balvor in love, let alone together. The idea just seemed impossible to me. I glanced back at Zhayrald, who was standing next to Ziaghra, both of them watching me. She wasn't always like this, Balvor said.


She wasn't always like this, he repeated. Just all of a sudden, something with her changed and she became the person you know her as. I think Vdzr and his power hungry ideas got to her. He made them sound so wonderful when he tried to persuade me to join him…

So this wasn't Itrantia's crazy ideas, she was just the puppet. Vdzr was the true mastermind behind this pointless war. I growled and leaped through the wall of fire without a second thought. The flames licked my fur as if they weren't there; I felt no heat. I landed in front of Vdzr, snarling.

You! This is all YOUR fault! You are using all of us to try to start a war that makes no sense!

Okay, I admit it, Vdzr replied smugly. But you forgot that part where I start a war between every race on this planet.

It doesn't matter!

It does! Join me, Kaltezira. With our powers, we can make the avians the dominant race on this planet.

Let me think…what's the word I'm looking for? Oh yeah. NEVER! I pounced at Vdzr, fangs barred. He moved out of the way just in time and took off into the forest like the coward he is.

Zhay, make sure the Zlhorv army doesn't do anything stupid. I thought as I pulled down the fire wall and ran into the forest after Vdzr.

I don't think they would dream of attacking us now. Zhayrald replied a couple minutes later in a way that told me I didn't want to be there right now. Vdzr wove in and out of the trees like I did when I flew, keeping a reasonable distance from me.

Do I want to know what's going on?

No. The way he said that made me feel like I really should know, like he was hiding something.

Tell me anyway.

Are you sure? Just promise me you won't run into a tree.

Fine! Now just tell me!

Your parents are making out, Zhayrald told me. Awk-ward. (Last AN i swear! i considered putting the Breaking Dawn line '!!!!' here...but took it out because i think the awk-ward made up for it. that line made me LMAO!)

I told you.

Gross. I am so glad I am not there, I said.

Please, let me join you, he begged, sounding kind of desperate to get away. Maybe I'll just be the nice person I am and make him stay.

No, I think I'll just leave you to watch my parents make out.

Thanks, Zhayrald said, his voice dripping with sarcasm.

You're welcome. Zhayrald mentally rolled his eyes. I sniffed the air again. Damn it! Vdzr had turned around and was going to way I had come. I leaped into the air, flying as fast as I could the way I came. Curse Zhayrald for distracting me by telling me that my parents were making out.

I love you too, Zhayrald joked as I landed in the clearing a moment later. The Zlhorv and Arez armies had converged now, talking among themselves like nothing was happening. Lucky them.

"He went that way,"Zhayrald told me, pointing off to his right.

There's no way I can do this alone. I'll get tired eventually and then he'll come back here and kill you, I said. Zhayrald sighed and kneeled next to me, stroking my fur.

"Let's worry about that later, like when we actually get into that situation. 'Cause I won't be able to help you and the only person who can…well let's just say that we are gonna need something to make him stop making out with your mother."

Most awkward statement ever, I thought.

"Yeah," Zhayrald agreed. "If you go that way now, you'll be able to cut him off." He pointed in the way I came. I licked his cheek. "Ugh, gross, Kalte," Zhayrald said, wiping the side of his face, chuckling. I chuckled and ran off into the trees. Now I had to get serious.

I heard Vdzr's paws contact with the ground before I saw him, his dark silhouette almost invisible under the dark clouds and the shadows of the trees. He had no idea I was there. And then the wind changed. My luck sucks. Vdzr looked straight at me and bolted in the other direction.

COWARD! I screamed in my head. Come and fight like a man!

If that's what you want, Vdzr growled, turning to face me so fast I almost crashed into him, that's what you are going to get. I'm not going to hold out on you like I always did.

Neither am I, I snarled. We glared at each other for a long time; I was making sure he never stood between him and the two armies in the clearing. There was no need to bring them into this. Vdzr growled at me and ran towards me, slashing my side as he ran past, trying to get back to the clearing so he could use Zhayrald to his advantage. I grabbed his tail in my jaws, feeling my teeth sink into the muscle, and tossed him back.

Is that the best you can do? I asked, laughing. The Rez fight better with their tiny slingshots than you do. Vdzr snarled and leapt, his massive jaws aiming for my throat. He managed to pin me, his claws digging into my shoulders. I drove my hind legs into his gut, pushing him off me and into a near by tree. I used my momentum to complete the backwards flip, but then realized my mistake. I had pushed him backwards and now my back was turned to him. Crap. Vdzr dug his claws into my back and his fangs into my neck. I tried everything…well the only technique to try to get him off, rolling onto my back. All that did was made his claws bury themselves deeper into my back, piercing the newly sewn muscle that laced my back. Was I gonna give up? Hell, no. I still had one trick up my sleeve, the only problem was: Would it work the way I wanted it to?

You can always give up, Vdzr offered. Join me and I'll let your boyfriend live…maybe.

Over my dead body, I repeated. I arched my back and the familiar feeling of my fire coming in contact with my skin traced along my spine. A ridge of fire, similar to a ridge of spikes along a creature's back, grew from my back, tossing Vdzr about twenty feet. I heard him let out a short whimper as he hit the ground and I smiled internally. But then, he ran, again. Shit! I had let him between the clearing and me, and now that's where he was heading. I snarled and launched myself into the air. By the time I got to the clearing, Vdzr was already there; having a staring contest with Zhayrald and the armies had split into two again, the two standing in the center.

You could always surrender, Vdzr offered to Zhayrald. Then I would ensure that your girlfriend lives. Then I dove at him. I loved the startled expression on his face and I landed on him, pinning him after we each managed to earn a few scratches.

You could always surrender, I said, repeating his words. But I'm not sure I can ensure that you would live.

I would extend the same to you, Vdzr offered. But I know I would have to kill someone. He dug his back legs into my gut and tossed me off. I hovered in the air for a moment and then dove back at him, aiming for the back of his neck. I managed to bite him, but about a foot down from my intended target. My fangs dragged across about a foot of his back, digging deep lines in his back and sending his fur into my mouth. Fur tasted really bad. Vdzr shook me off again and managed to rake my side with his claws. I have now come to the conclusion that fighting is not my thing. Hopefully, I would never have to do this again.

You fight like a girl, Vdzr sneered. I heard Zhayrald growl behind me.

For your information, I am a girl. Hard to believe sometimes, huh? I joked. I let out a breath as we circled each other again, and nearly jumped back when I saw my breath catch on fire. Was I some sorta wolf/dragon hybrid thing, or was it just part of the controlling fire thing? I assumed the second one. We fought for about another ten minutes each earning ourselves a new series of gashes. I was surprised that Zhayrald, or anyone for that matter, hadn't done something. I stopped for a mere second, trying to catch my breath as I felt fresh blood soak my fur along my back and sides. Vdzr took advantage of my moment and leaped at me.

As soon as he was in the air and coming down at me, I let the fire pour from my mouth. The flames moved right past my teeth and brushed over my tongue like nothing. I loved the expression of shock and fear etched on Vdzr's face and the flames engulfed him. I cut off the fire and dove for Vdzr, using his shock to pin him and dig my fangs in his throat. If he did anything, I could kill him in an instant, and he knew that.

So, what should I do with him? I asked.

You aren't gonna kill him? Zhayrald asked me.

I'm not a killer. Zhayrald seemed content with my answer.

I say, we kill him anyway, Balvor answered. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him walking towards me, his white fur still matted down from the continuing rain, which was beginning to slow. And then have Kaltezira burn his body.

Let's not be hasty here, Vdzr said, panicked and extremely nervous. He knew he couldn't win now. He had lost, and we had won. The thought overjoyed me.

Shut up, I growled, tightening my grip on his throat. Or I will kill you. He listened without question.

I say we banish him. Somewhere far away, where he would go crazy and the people could control him, Balvor suggested.

The Rez would drive him nuts, but he would kill them all in less than a week, I thought. Vdzr would most likely eat them for breakfast in one day; they could drive people to insanity in a way that made me wonder how I made it out of there sane. We could send him to that underwater civilization. He would have fun trying to escape them. I laughed at the thought.

How would we get him there?

I really don't know, but I just say we chain him up somewhere or just banish him. Just leave him in the woods by his lonesome.

Impatient, much, Kaltezira? Zhayrald asked.

No, his fur tastes really bad. When was the last time you took a bath? I asked Vdzr. He growled and I tightened my grip on his neck, which shut him up quick.

We could always do this, Zhayrald said, hitting Vdzr upside the head, knocking him out. I dropped his limp body from my jaws and let the last of the rain land on my tongue to wash away the taste.

We should have done that a long time ago, Balvor said. He returned to his human form and stood, hopefully not to go make out with my mother again. I barked and he turned to face me, Itrantia walking up behind him, both of them watching me.

Ask him how I get back…ya know…to being human! I told Zhayrald. He chuckled as he sat down next to me and ran his fingers through my fur.

"She wants to know how to change back," Zhayrald told Balvor. My father chuckled and smiled down at me.

"You think after all of the questions you've asked me, I'm going to give you a straight answer? You can figure it out yourself, Kaltezira, I know you can," he replied. Leave it to him to not give a straight answer. I let out an annoyed sigh and Zhayrald chuckled. I glared at him and he just chuckled again and kissed my forehead. It was then I realized that we were alone. It was only me, Zhayrald, and Vdzr's unconscious body.

Where'd everyone go? I asked.

"Home," Zhayrald told me. "Itrantia and Ziaghra made up after you left and before Itrantia started…well you know." He looked up and into the trees for a moment. "Your parents want to talk. I'll meet you at Arez, okay? I don't wanna be around when he gets up." I nodded, shaking all of the water off my fur, a majority of it landing on Zhayrald. "Gee, thanks," he said sarcastically.

You're welcome. I ran off into the forest before Zhayrald could do anything, the wind smoothing my fur as I ran. I was going to regret that later, I had a gut feeling about it.

Hope you guys liked it! Oh yeah, almost forgot. *lets Zhayrald go* thats for the reviews! lol!

And now its time to answer my reviews!

wings- yeah you pretty much got everything....if you think Zhay over thinks things...just wait.

I like to describe Kaltezira and Zhayrald as the love intensity of Bella and Edward with all of the live threatening situations of Max and Fang! :) if you review, you get to see if Kaltezira's parents wanting to talk to her is a plan to kill her by Itrantia.


me: oh shit. *runs*

16. Chapter 15

Hey everyone! Sorry it took so long...stupid internet was driving me nuts! anyway....i forgot to mention that the last song was inspired by Through the Fire and the Flames by Dragonforce! i bet you call guessed that.....

This chapter does NOT have the song Always and Forever by Taylor Swift! i actually named this chapter that before i knew she had a song titled that! weird huh?

Anyway, this chapter isn't very long but its the second to last one! *sobs* and i'm almost done with the sequel! yay! im going to warn you know....i have cried several times while writing the third story on scrap paper while my sister hogs the computer...its very depressing so buy some boxes of tissues. :)

Chapter Fifteen: Always and Forever

It didn't take me long to find them. Thankfully, they weren't making out when I got there. My eyes would have been scarred for eternity. Oh crap. How was I supposed to talk to them? Or was I just supposed to listen? And I couldn't ask questions on how to change back…this was going to be a long conversation.

"Still haven't figured it out yet, I see," Balvor said, smiling down at me from where he sat in the tree, next to Itrantia. Well, it had only been five minutes, maybe, and I was still trying to absorb the fact that the war was over. Of course, he couldn't hear me.

"It's really quite simple," Balvor told me. He refused to answer me clearly when my life was at stake and it only took me moments to figure it out. Now he hands me a simple situation, and I have yet to figure out its solution. "Just think about how you phased." Did he just give me a hint? Oh my god, it's a sign of the second apocalypse, we should start running in circles and screaming now. I looked at him like he was crazy and he shrugged, still smiling down at me.

Okay, it was simple and had something to do with how I phased. Then it hit me. Wow. Now I feel dumb. I can't believe I didn't think of that before. I sat at the base of the tree with my eyes closed, for how long I don't know. I could have been there for hours or seconds, days or weeks, trying to pull back the fire that kept me in this form. Every time a twig snapped, or a bird overhead killed the silence, I lost my grip on the fire and was forced to start over. As I pulled back the fire after the hundredth failure, I realized this time that it was actually working. I felt my fur disappear and my bones shift into their human places. I opened my eyes and saw my hair falling in front of my face, my hands gripping the ground, my torn jeans, covered in dirt and filled with holes. I pulled my self up, leaning against the tree. Once I realized that this was real, I let out a sigh and rested my head on the tree, closing my eyes again. I was human again.

"Well, it only took you about three hours," Balvor said, breaking the silence. My eyes shot open and I glared at him. "But it was a start. You'll get it eventually."

"I bet it took you a week before you figured it out," I replied. Balvor chuckled.

"Vdzr was right about something," Itrantia commented, "she really is your daughter." Balvor laughed this time and kissed Itrantia.

"Please, save my eyes," I said, closing my eyes again. "I would rather live without a memory of my parents making out."

"Well, unfortunately, your mind reader boyfriend has to live with it," Itrantia said, her arms still wrapped around Balvor's neck.

"Well, if you two are just gonna make out, I'm gonna go. You know where to find me," I said. I looked back, as I started to walk into the trees.

"Kalte?" Itrantia called to me. I turned around and looked up at her, my hazel eyes meeting hers, which I now realized were an emerald green.

"Yeah?" I answered. My mother jumped from the tree and strode over to me. Her stride didn't look alien to me anymore, it looked normal, it looked avian. Balvor had jumped from the tree and now leaned against its trunk, watching us closely.

"I'm sorry, and thank you," she said, her hands resting on my shoulders.

"For what?" I asked.

"If you hadn't said what you said back there, we'd still be fighting back there," Itrantia explained. I smiled and she smiled back before Balvor embraced us both.

"I thought I would never see the day," he whispered as we hugged him back, "that you two could stand so close and not kill each other. I got my family back."

"And I never thought I'd see the day where you two would be so close and not ripping each other's throats out," I murmured, "let alone scarring Zhay with that picture of you two making out." I could only hope I wouldn't have to see the same thing.

"If he can live with you," Itrantia joked, "I think he can live with that. And if you lived with the Rez for fourteen years and Balvor here, I think you can live with this." Itrantia kissed Balvor again, passionately and Balvor returned it with the same intensity, letting go of me.

"Oh my god, my eyes," I said, turning away. I don't think I could live with those kinds of images in my mind. "I'm leaving now. You know where to find me." They weren't gonna stop me this time. I ran until I got to the clearing, Vdzr's body still lying in its center. Only his breathing told me he was still alive.

My wings stretched out the muscles of my back as I flew towards Arez. That was some conversation. How long did we talk? Five minutes, maybe. As long as I wasn't scarred for life with the memory of my parents making out, I was happy.

It didn't take me long to get back to Arez. Zhayrald wasn't waiting for me like I had expected. I flew in through the window I had left open earlier in his room and found him there. I assumed that he had been watching the ceiling as he lay on his bed, waiting for me to come back, but now his crystal blue eyes were locked onto me. I pulled in my wings and we stared at each other for the longest time. Then Zhayrald started laughing.

"I can see your conversation with your parents went well," he said, walking over to me.

"Yeah," I agreed, wrapping my arms around his neck. "I said like three sentences." Zhay smiled again and kissed my forehead.

"I missed you, Kalte," he whispered, wrapping his arms around my waist. I knew what he meant by that, and I had missed him too.

"We were never apart," I answered, "and we never will be. Ever." Zhayrald kissed my nose, his lips too far from mine.

"So what am I supposed to do now that I will never be apart from you?" he asked me.

"Love me as I love you," I suggested. The war was over, so the second half was not necessary.

"I always will," Zhayrald replied, pressing his lips to mine, his tongue sliding into my mouth to battle with mine and his hands sliding up my shirt to rest on the small of my back as my fingers wrapped themselves in his still damp hair. More than you can ever imagine.

wait for it....AWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!! so cute. :) reviews mean you get the final chapter! and they make me finish the sequel faster!

17. Epilogue

Last chapter! I can't believe I actually made it this far! LOL! ANYWAY, after this is done, I have to finish the sequel, edit it, and then it will be posted and since my midterms ended like last week, I will have all the time in the world! yay!

xmoonlightxwingsx- love your former name and your icon thing. I love Twilight just as much as i do MaxRide. :)

OMG THAT REMINDS ME!! i heard that vanessa hudgens tried out to play Leah (ew.) and that DAKOTA FANNING might play JANE! *gasp* can you imagine her playing an evil vampire that can make you cry out in pain by just looking at you? i can't.


Epilogue: Untamed Soul and Tames the Wolf

Why this was happening, I really had no clue. Why Ziaghra had stolen Zhayrald from me for me the entire day, I had a clue. The war had ended a month ago and apparently Ziaghra had this great idea of having a ball, complete with dresses and all that stuff. Unfortunately, this included forcing me into several dresses right after I woke up to find Zhayrald not there. I think she had me try on about fifteen dresses while I was half asleep and not happy in my current predicament before finally choosing the dress I had first tried on.

"I still can't see why I have to wear this," I complained again, motioning to the dress. Ziaghra rolled her eyes again.

"'Cause you look amazing in it and because it's about time you started acting like a girl," she explained. And if I didn't want to act like a girl? I decided not to ask that.

"Could I live without you sticking five hundred pins in my hair?" I asked as I winced as another pin stuck itself into my scalp. Ziaghra had pinned all of my waist length hair up, into some intricate design no doubt. It felt so wrong to have my back and wings, which were pushed through slits in the dress, exposed like that.

Speaking of my wings, how did a floor length golden dress match my black and red wings anyway? Something black, red, or maybe white would have matched nicely. Ziaghra had told me before it didn't matter and that the color of the dress brought out my hazel eyes, somehow. She could have picked something I could actually walk in, something simpler and less elegant. I was going to a ball, much to my regret; I wasn't being a bridesmaid in my parents' second wedding, thank god. That would have been worse.

"No, you look so much better with your hair up."

"Considering my hair was dry and knotted, I think it would have looked better anyway you put it before you washed it for an hour," I said. I was not enjoying this.

"There, I'm done," said the woman who knew I was not enjoying this.

"Finally," I sighed. Ziaghra tossed me a pair of shoes, if you would call them that. Was she serious? I would kill someone, most likely Zhayrald, wearing these. "Are you crazy?!"

"You fight Vdzr, one of the best known fighters in avian history, and you aren't afraid. I hand you a pair of two inch heels, however, and you are terrified," Ziaghra said, amusement in her voice.

"Yes, I am scared of these…shoes because I'll probably kill your son in them," I replied. Ziaghra laughed and pulled me out of the chair she had forced me into.

"I'm not gonna have to make some huge entrance, right?" I asked, sounding kind of panicked.

"No," Ziaghra reassured me. Hallelujah.

"Mother," Zhayrald called from the other side of the door. I jumped up, overjoyed, only to be pushed onto Ziaghra's bed and have those two inch heels forced into my hands.

"Go downstairs, I'll make sure Kaltezira makes it down in one piece," she told her son.

"I'm not sure you can say that," I said, reluctantly strapping on the heels. "I doubt I'll make it out of the room without tripping over something." I heard Zhayrald chuckle and his foot steps fade away.

Save me, I begged him in my mind, receiving silence as an answer. I was assuming he had prevented himself from reading my mind, or Ziaghra's, most likely by her orders.

I wish he was there to save me, to take me back to his room so I could change into a pair of pants, but no. I'm gonna guess this was his revenge for me for leaving him with the scarring memory of my parents making out and for getting him all wet. Why he was mad about the second one I don't really know. That boy could be weird sometimes, but that's why I loved him.

"You ready or not?" Ziaghra asked me, impatient. I sighed and slowly walked over to her. I was now a good four inches taller than her instead of my normal two, as if I needed to be any taller. I nodded, content I managed not to kill myself walking five feet. Now I was going to have to walk down a hall, down a flight of stairs, walk around in a ballroom, and…dance. Again I bring up the fact that I am not having fun with this.

Ziaghra saw my expression and laughed, grabbing my hand and practically dragging me down the hall and throwing me at my new best friend, Dyndray. Besides Ziaghra, this blonde girl with light yellow wings was my only real girlfriend.

"Kalte, is that you?!" she asked me. Ziaghra puts me in a dress and everyone thinks I'm a totally different person.

"Yeah, Dyn, it's me," I replied. Dyndray just laughed at me. I could tell that she could tell that I was not having fun with this.

"You look like you would rather fight Vdzr again then go down there," she commented.

"I would, actually. Why, is he here? Do I not have to go down there?" I asked, pleading that I could actually get some excuse to not go.

"No, you have to go down there," she told me as she and Ziaghra proceeded to drag me down the hall.

Somebody kill me now, before I have the chance to embarrass myself in front of the entire avian world, I asked in my mind with no response as I stumbled like five hundred times down the hallway.

"Can I at least change the shoes?" I pleaded.

"No, you made it this far," Ziaghra told me. "And I want to see the expression on Zhayrald's face when he sees you."

"I wouldn't mind seeing that either," Dyndray agreed. "Now, I am actually looking forward to it." I laughed. It took a lot to get me into this dress, I guess seeing his face would be worth it, if I didn't kill myself first.

"I told you so," Ziaghra taunted, seeing the expression on my face.

"Let's just get this over with," I muttered. Ziaghra smiled and pulled me down the staircase. "Not so fast! I don't wanna die!" Ziaghra and Dyndray's laughter echoed down the stone staircase. Sometimes they drove me crazy. Ziaghra led me into the huge ballroom, a part of the castle I had never seen. Pillars lined the walls, all of them draped with elegant colors. An orchestra sat at the front of the hall, their bows sliding gracefully across the strings of their instruments. More avians than I had ever seen assembled in a single place, danced in the middle of the hall. Finding Zhayrald in this mob would be like finding a needle in a haystack. I walked around the edges of the hall for a while alone as Dyndray left to search for her boyfriend, mainly just wondering. Zhayrald could find me faster than I could find him.

"I never thought I would see the day," someone muttered behind me. I turned to find Balvor and Itrantia smiling at me. "Did Zia have to pin you down to get you into that dress?" Balvor asked.

"No, she resorted to blackmail," I replied, hugging him.

"She kept Zhayrald from you didn't she?"

"Maybe." My face grew warm and I looked down at the floor again. My father just laughed at me. He was so supportive.

"And how in the world did she get you into those shoes?" Itrantia asked after embracing me. I was two inches taller than her now and only an inch shorter than Balvor.

"I don't know," I said, shrugging. "She almost killed me getting me down here. I stumbled at least a hundred times. I'm probably going to end up on my butt before the night is over. I could kill somebody in these heels." Itrantia just laughed. What was with everyone and laughing at everything I said today? Was I suddenly some sort of comic genius or something?

"You haven't killed anyone yet, that's the important part," Ziaghra commented, coming from behind me to stand next to my parents. I leaned against one of the massive pillars, drumming my fingers against its stone surface. Someone save me now, please.

There was a long silence, between me, Balvor, Itrantia, and Ziaghra, that is. I glanced over to where they had been standing to find that they had left. Well, thanks guys. Then, I felt those familiar ice blue eyes staring at me. Don't ask me how I knew it was him, but I just did.

"Kaltezira," he whispered. I looked over at him. He stood next to me, his blue eyes wide in amazement and awe. "You look…amazing," he breathed. I felt my cheeks grow hot and my hair wasn't there to hide it.

"You too, Zhay," I said, wrapping my arms around his neck. He smiled and wrapped his arms around my waist. I didn't need to be a mind reader to know that we both wished that my hair was down so that he could run his hand through it.

"So, how'd my mother get you into that dress?" Zhayrald asked me.

"How'd someone force you into that outfit?" I countered, looking at his outfit: black pants, a nice pair of dress shoes, and an off white dress shirt with an ice blue bow tie which matched his eyes perfectly, and a black jacket. I wished I was the lucky one and got to wear pants.

"I actually picked this out myself," Zhayrald told me, obviously pleased with the fact.

"Impressive," I said. "Your mother made me try on about fifteen dresses before picking this one. Then she spent the rest of the day doing my hair. Oh yeah, and she tried to kill me by dragging me down here in two inch heels." Zhayrald laughed and kissed my forehead.

"Well, I'm going to have to thank her later because you look amazing in that dress, so amazing that I have no words to describe it. I doubted you were the same person when I saw you," Zhayrald whispered, his face within an inch from mine. I blushed again, no doubt a bright red, and Zhayrald smiled. He pressed his lips to mine, but only for a moment.

"Were you like keeping yourself from reading my mind or something all day today?" I asked out of curiosity after he peeled his lips from mine.

"Yeah," he replied. "I wanted everything to be a surprise and I'm glad I did." I smiled and looked at my feet, blushing…again. I was really starting to wish that my hair was down to hide my face that turned red every two seconds. Zhayrald chuckled and put his hand under my chin forcing me to look at him. "What am I going to do with you, Kalte?" he asked me. And give me a different answer this time. I sighed.

"But I have no other answer,"I answered. Zhayrald smiled, shaking his head in disbelief. He removed one of my hands from his neck and spun me around in time with the music that flowed from the strings of the instruments of the orchestra. As the song evaporated into nothing, I found myself so close to the floor that if I spread my wings about a foot, they would be touching the cold stone. Zhayrald smiled at me again and we straightened, his crystal eyes sparkling.

"Maybe now you have another answer?" he wondered. I knew he wasn't really wondering. He knew I had no other answer, and he knew what I was going to say before the words even touched my lips.

"I will still give you the same answer, but now I am curious," I said. "How'd you learn to dance like that?" Zhayrald laughed and let his fingers trace my jaw.

"Just something I was forced to learn as a young prince," he explained, "but come on. I wanna show you something." He grabbed my hand and led me out of the castle and down a path into the surrounding forest. I tripped over everything for a while until I just took off my heels and carried them.

"Where are we going, Zhay?" I asked after a while.

"Once we get there, I'll tell you."

"You have no idea where we are going?!" Zhayrald just laughed.

"Of course I know where we are going," he said. "Because we are already here." He pulled back a tree branch to reveal a small beach. The waters were calm and the sun was just above the horizon, dying the sky and the ocean orange and yellow. My toes buried themselves into the sand, happy that they weren't in the heels and tripping over various tree roots.

"Zhay, it's beautiful. How'd you find it?" I asked.

"I found it when I was about eight. I normally came here when I was bored but then I stopped after a while. I remembered about it a week ago and came down here, and it's still here," he explained, wrapping his arms around my waist and rested his chin on my shoulder. There was something in his voice I couldn't place: worry, nervousness, anxiety, or a combination of the three. We stood there for a while, just watching the horizon in each other's arms. It was hard to believe that only a month ago we thought we would never hold each other again.

"My mother told me the weirdest thing the other day," Zhayrald said out of the blue.

"I think I can handle it," I replied. He smiled and kissed the base of my neck.

"Apparently, both of our names translate into a second meaning," he whispered. I looked at him, my confusion written all over my face. "Don't ask me how; I just know it's true."

"Well, are you going to tell me what they are or not?" I asked, smirking. Zhay chuckled and his lips grazed across my neck, moving upward until they kissed my jaw.

"I was getting to that," he said. "My name translates to Stars in Moonless Night and Tames the Wolf."

"And mine?" I asked.

"Along with translating to Blood Stars in Black Sky, your name also translates to Untamed Soul," he explained. Untamed Soul and Tames the Wolf. I chuckled at the irony. We stood in the middle of the beach now, his arms wrapped around my waist and mine wrapped around his neck.

"What does this have to do with anything?" I said, breaking the peaceful silence between us.

"Everything," he whispered. He stepped away from me and I tilted my head like a questioning dog. What was he up to? Smiling, Zhayrald did the last thing I ever expected him to do: he dropped to one knee and pulled a small black box out of his pocket.

Oh my god, oh my god, oh my fucking god. My thoughts started going at two hundred miles per hour, if that was even possible. Was he serious? Well, obviously, he was. Why did he even bother to ask? He can read my mind; he knows what I'm going to say. Of course he would ask, geez what am I thinking? I think I'm going insane, that's what I think. Or I am just becoming extremely paranoid or just having a freakish panic attack. And I also think that I am gonna give Zhay a headache if I keep thinking at this rate.

"Kaltezira, Blood Stars in Black Sky, Untamed Soul," Zhayrald said, using all three of my names and bringing my attention back to him. "From the first time I saw you, I knew you were the one I wanted to spend forever with. Will you marry me?" He opened the box with his telekinesis powers and my mind went racing at two hundred miles per hours again.

This ring was so simple, so perfect, so…him. The diamond caught the light of the setting sun perfectly as it sat on the simple gold band. Two wings were perfectly carved into the gold beside the sparkling diamond. The tears of happiness and pure joy swelled in my eyes, threatening to over flow. My knees wanted to give in, to fall so that I knelt in front of him, but the fabric of my golden dress, now shimmering the in the setting sun, held my knees in place.

"Yes," I finally managed to whisper, the tears of joy falling freely down my face. Zhayrald beamed and dragged me down onto the sand with him. He slipped the ring, my ring, on my finger and wrapped his arms around my waist, his body pinning mine against the sand.

"You don't know how happy you just made me," he whispered, pressing his forehead to mine. "You just made me the happiest person on this planet."

"I beg to differ," I murmured, smiling as I wrapped my arms around his neck. "You just made me the happiest person on this planet."

"Liar," he accused. "I can read your mind, Kaltezira, and there is no way you are happier than I am at this very moment."

"I'm surprised to you can decode my thoughts since they are racing at two hundred miles an hour," I said. Zhayrald chuckled and moved one of his hands to my hair, pulling out the pins until it fell in waves down my back and into the sand.

"So am I," he answered, "and you're starting to give me a headache." I laughed.

"I can't help it. I have so much, too much, to think about now. Mostly it's about you."

"I know, Kaltezira," Zhayrald whispered, our lips brushing as they moved together. "I know." He pressed his lips to mine and let the familiar spark jump between us. We had forever now, we always had. He would spend forever trying to tame my inner wolf, my free flying soul, and I would spend forever trying to defy him.

Did anyone cry? 'cause I almost did.

since i love you all...(in a nongay way.) im going to give you the summary (which i will make up on the spot) of the sequel whose title should now make sence....Tames the Wolf.

Before he had forever with Kaltezira, who exactly was Zhayrald, prince of the avian city of Arez? What secrets does the mind-reader hide? Who exactly is his father that we have never heard of? Why does he hate Vdzr so much? How exactly did he cope for two years while Kaltezira was trapped in Zlhorv and not lose his sanity? The sequel to Untamed Soul. AU.

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