I grimaced as I opens the basket full of rotten berries. I pick it up and show it to Father who grimaced too.
"Dumps that in the river," I walk it to the tribe river and dump it out, watching the berry red mix with water flow down the stream. Let the clean white stream water fill the basket up. I set it over to the side so the scene of the water would dry in the basket. I wipe my hands and head back to my tent.
"They're gone." I say to my Father sitting down in front of him.
"Good. Good. Tell your mother that we need more berries for me. I have to start the hot water." Once again, I stand and exit the tent to find my mother.
"Hey Dawn," I tap her shoulder, she turns around,
"Have you seen my mother anywhere?" She thinks for a minute,
"Yeah, she's with Lucile picking some berries since the old ones she had were rotten." I sigh. That explains.
"Thanks Dawn." I tell Father the news. He says an 'okay' Finally, I'm free. I pack my bow and arrows with a pouch full of dried deer stomach and a can of fresh squeezed apples in case I want a snack. I put on my boots and my fur vest then head out into the woods.
When I find the tree, I stop to put my things down on the soft green grass. I take out some dried deer and chew on it examining my trees. The red paint had faded off them making the target harder to shoot. Groaning, I look around for something to paint the trees with again. I use one of my arrows to mark my spot so I would know where to come back from then search for something to use. When I spot something red, I jog to whatever it is. The faster I get to it, the faster I can paint the trees and the faster I can start shooting. I crouch down to the thick red liquid that leads a trail. It smells. I drip my two fingers into the liquid and put it up to my nose and sniff. Blood. I stand up alerted now and follow the trail that gets bigger in width every few steps. The blood finally ends in a pool, I gasp at the sight. A boy, about my age, laying there, unconscious with a gash in his head. I notice the tree ahead of us had a splatter of blood on it. He probably ran into it. But why was there a trail? I shake the sleeping boy, hoping he would come to me but he doesn't. I check for a heartbeat. There was a slight one.
"Wake up wake up wake up." I sigh shaking him harder. Then a sound hits my ears. Growling. In panic mode, I anxiously look around trying to find a source. It was getting dark. The tribe will be setting up the candles signalling they're sleep. I need to make it back in time. The growling gets louder and out of the shadows came a wolf, fur was tangled and grey with dots of black and white. His eyes hungry for us. The boy will be any easier target, probably his only target because of the blood. The wolf's black eyes trail from me to the sleeping boy behind me who seemed to be getting paler from blood loss. The wolf is accompanied by his pack as he starts to walk in a circle around me and the boy. My heart increases its beat, blood fills my ear as it leaves my face. I'm no match for 5 wolves. Especially since I have a body to get out of here.
One wolf lunged at me but I mange to dodge it. The others go for the boy, dragging him slowly away from me. I almost forget about the wolf in front of me. It's dad's rules to never kill an innocent animal. All this wolf wants is some food for his pack. Maybe the alpha female cubs. But they can't have that boy. The wolf growls when I try to move, my eyes locked on the boy as he's dragged by the wolves. I did what I first thought. Kick it. I swing a kick that lands right on the wolf's side making it whimper and fall over. I make sure its not dead before racing to the dragging boy. I break off a branch on the way and connect it full force with the jaw of one. It staggers back from impact and its packmate jumps for me, knocking me down and trying to get a bite from me. I struggle against its jaws as it tries to. With effort I get one of my legs on its stomach and launch it off me, making it hit a bush. As fast as I could, I grab the boys arms and power drag him as fast as I could but the wolf that I kicked came at the boy's legs, biting him hard.
"No!" I shout tugging on the wolf's jaws. When he doesn't give in I give another hardy kick to its ribs causing him let go and whimper. Again, I make sure he's not dead and continue to pull the bleeding boy from the wolves.
I sigh in happiness as I find my arrow sticking up from the ground. I release the boy's arms and they flop to the dirt. I strip off my fur vest and rip off a piece before tying the piece to the bite wound on his ankle. Now to get him back to the tribe. They should've put the candles out by now. I wonder why. Oh well. I gather my arrows and bow and sling them both on my back. I snap on my pouch before picking up the still sleep boy in my arms. He's light. I walk him back to the village where the whole tribe was sitting around a fire, praying.
"Mother!" I shout to the people who jump from my booming voice. Mother smiles but that fades when she sees the bleeding boy in my arms. Her and other women rush to me looking at the boy in my arms before taking him to one of the tents. Exhausted now, I go to my own tent, strip off everything and slip into my fur sleeping sack and fall asleep to people rushing around outside. I would be with him. I would answer dad's questions but I was just too tired for all of it.
I wake to Dawn shaking me roughly. I groan and say a very irritated 'what?'
"The boy you saved is awake. He wishes to see and thank you properly." Why would he want to thank me? I only dragged him here. With another groan, I get out from my sack and slip on my black leggings that were custom made and my boots. I didn't bother with a top I just walk out shirtless. I'm not a built person no I'm not at all but I'm not skin and bones either. I'm a fair weight and tanned but a tad darker than the others because of my African mother which is by far the most beautiful woman in the tribe. I don't exercise much at all, a 14 year old kid has playing to do before he turns 16 and when he does, he has to hunt with the men and fight off bears and such. Honestly, I wish 16 could be farther because I'm not into all that stuff. I don't like killing things. I don't like fishing. I don't like sparring everyday with another boy my age just so people can score your abilities in fighting. I don't fight. I'll get my ass handed to me.
I reach the tent of my great grand mother and look around. There was girls sitting Indian style looking at someone. I gasp at how much he resembles to a girl.
"Hi, you must be my savior." He says in a high pitched voice as he stands. His hair goes all the way to his hips.
"I just want to thank you for saving my life. I would've been eaten by now." He says smiling. I look at my grand mother who gave me a 'don't be rude' look. "I'm Kaleb," I introduce myself to him; with a simple nod he says,
"I'm Heiden," interesting name if I do say so myself.
"Kaleb. Why don't you show Heiden around eh? Show him everything." Mother suggests with a smile. I hesitantly lead Heiden outside the tent. I show him the healing river, the 'Black Stallion'; a carved horse into the ground where we do our praying, the circle of life; many colorful stones in a shape of a circle where we have our bonds or weddings.
"These are some beautiful sights indeed. Do you have any tribe animals? Like as I the white wolves are mine. Well used to be anyway." His posture is also very lady like. So is his walk.
"Where do you come from?" I ask kicking a rock along the dirt.
"Wolf Clan. Wolf is our native language. Only smart, rich people know Indian. I'm not rich or anything. My father and I always stayed away from people and I grew up knowing English with some wolf." I nod taking it all in.
"Where is your father?" I ask another question sitting on the green grass of the field, Heiden sitting next to me.
"I don't know. I ran away from home because we had gotten into an intense argument. He was saying how much I look and act like a girl. I told him that I'm not. I'm just like that. I ran away from him and then I hit something then everything went black. Now I'm here."
"Oh." I say checking him out. Like I said before, his hair came down to his waist which was black as midnight. He has mint green eyes that were hidden with each blink of his thick, many eyelashes. His lips were tinted a cherry red, plump and settled on his face nicely.
He sighs and land back on his hands, letting the sun blanket his skin in warmness with a relaxed smile across his cherry red lips.
"Have you ever thought what it'd be like to......you know.....die?" I jump alerted,
"Huh?!" He chuckles softly.
"Not like that. I mean, what happens when you do you know? Like what happens to you? Is it painful? Does it feel good? Where do you go? What do you see? Can you see?" He ask questions more to himself than me.
"I don't know. My mother always told me that when you die, you're re born in a new body. Somewhere far away from where you originally were. You'll have no memory of your past life."
"That doesn't make sense."
"What do you mean?"
"Why have to be re born? What if someone wanted to get out of this Earth but has to come back? I think the spirits should give people a choice."
"You mean gods right?" He opens his eyes to lock his confided gaze on my brown eyes.
"Spirits. The upper world is full of spirits."
"You mean heaven. Where angels are." I correct him.
"No. Spirits in the upper world."
"Angels in heaven."
"Well obviously we have different believes," he says eyeing me up and down.
"We should get back to the tribe. They're probably wondering where we are,"
Alright." I help him up off the grass and we headed back to the tribe.
"What kind of ceremonies do you have here?" Heiden asks out of the blue.
"Uhh, we usually do our burial for the dead outside of the tribe gates. There's a path that leads there. Other than that we do bondings and when a boy or girl turn 16, we do a ceremony where they get married to their selected soul mate."
"The tribe chooses?"
"Yeah. We don't get to choose our husbands or wives." Heiden nodded then looked around the tribe which had a pink, orange and gold tint to it from the sunset. Little children were playing while mothers talked as they cooked and fathers laugh with each other with a drink of cherry blueberry juice.
"Can I see the burial?" Heiden asks looking at me dead in my eyes.
"Sure," I say turning on my heel, "let's go." Heiden follows me as I lead him on the 2 mile trail to our burial. It was dead silent for the most part and I could tell Heiden was thinking about something but I didn't ask because I didn't wanna get in his thoughts.
Once we reach the burial, the air thickened around us. I never go to the burial alone or even at all. There has always been fog on the ground that never seems to leave.
"What happened to all these people?" I sigh hesitating on whether to answer or no.
"Well, when I was just 5 summers old, a sickness spread across the tribe, making people hungry for meat and soon ate anything." I start walking to the end of the burial where the stones start. I stop in front of 'Madelyn Stallion'
"Madelyn was the first one to be infected by it. She hid it from us until she broke. She eventually ate her daughter alive." I step to the right, now in front of 'Mage Stallion. A loving little girl'
"We locked her underground for the tribe's sake, but the sickness was already in her son." I step in front of 'Mason Stallion. A happy boy'
"We were friends at the time. They put him in a tent and kept him there, hoping it would go away but it didn't. The sickness was easier to catch by young children and mostly, children got it." I start trailing down the line, looking at names. 'Gain Stallion, Regga Stallion, Harthy Stallion, Earth Stallion'
"Then, when so many people were infected, we had no choice but to lock them with Madelyn and burn them alive. It was the only way for it to stop spreading. The whole tribe cried as we heard the children scream. Every anniversary of that day, everyone is quiet. We don't talk the whole day on Red Screams."
"Wow," he breathes out, "that's tragic." I nod agreeing.
"Well, in my village, a pack of black wolves ate our new born children." He says looking down,
"I was a big brother." I gasp,
"I'm really sorry for your loss."
"No," he waves it off, "I'm fine." It went silent , just us staring at a stone. He breaks it,
"Can we go back, I'm getting a chill."
"Yeah come on." I grab his wrist acting like it was for his safety but really it was because I'm scared. I speedwalk my way up the trail, trying to get the funny feeling off my back.
"Are you okay Kaleb? You seems pale."
"No I'm fine." I answer to quickly. Heiden digs his heels in the ground making me come to a halt, I face him confused,
"Like I said, you look pale. Are you sure you're okay?" I nod
"Yes, I am. Now let's get back." I rush. He shakes his head and sits down right on the ground. I look around wondering of he's serious and hope that there's no animals that will eat us alive out here.
"What are you doing?" I turn my gaze to him. He shrugs,
"Sitting here. Waiting for you to tell me." Is he serious???
"Come on Heiden, I wanna go back now, its getting dark and they'll put up the candles soon-"
"Then I guess you better tell me because I'm not moving."
"I'm scared of the burial, now can we go?" I beg looking around anxiously. If a bear eats me out here I'm haunting him for the rest of his life. Heiden finally gets up from the ground, as soon as he does, I grab his wrist and sprint to the tribe.
I sigh in happiness as the fire warms my face and body up. Me and Heiden have to share a tent since he won't with any of the grown or anyone else which I understand. Heiden sits Indian style, his hair was put in a braid from the little girls of the tribe. They also put a flower in there, a white rose, the tribe's flower.
"Have you ever wondered what its like to be sick? Is your mind thinking 'no' but you can't control your mind? Or is your way of thinking just change?" I shrug too tires to answer.
"I don't know, but I do believe it changes your way of thinking,"
"Oh. I'm sleepy, how about you?" I nod, my eyes becoming heavy. Lazily, I plop back onto the fur, soft, warm ground of the tent. Heiden settles himself next to me. I turn and face him,
"Goodnight, have good dreams and Lady will put lucky feathers in your hair."
"Who?" I raise a brow,
"Lady. The angel of good dreams. When you get nightmares, she comes inside to male them all better." I tell him.
"Sound nice.....and creepy," we both chuckle to that before it went dead silent.
"Night," I close my eyes. He doesn't say anything back but the darkening of the room told me he had moved, blocking the fire and something warm, soft, delicate and gentle rest upon my lips. Knowing Heiden was kissing me, I kiss back anyway for a split second but he pulls away and plants a kiss on my forehead.
"See you in the morning," he whispers before I go to sleep with a faint smile on my lips.
(PLEASE COMMENT! TIL NEXT TIME MY ORIGINALS!!)