Potato, because thinking up titles is hard.

So, I woke up in the middle of the night yesterday and scribbled down a few random ideas I had for a new story thing! I guess it's a Percy Jackson fanfiction, in a way, seeing how it's about Greek Mythology and I'll be using some of the information from the series to help me.
Basically, a story about one of Artemis' Hunters. It's probably going to be 1st person. Her name is Anthea, and she's a half-blood. Her god parent is Athena. I you don't know who Athena is, she's the Greek goddess of wisdom, courage, inspiration, civilization, law and justice, warfare, mathematics, strength, strategy, the arts, crafts, and skill. Anthea has a dream one night about a scheme to kill Artemis. The night after that, (after she already told Artemis about the dream), she has another one. The person/otherwise that wants to kill the goddess has captured Anthea's father. Anthea is to help them kill Artemis.
Having no choice, she agrees. The mean person that is now able to talk to her anytime they want, tells her where to lead Artemis. In one of the forests they stop in, Anthea meets a boy. The mean person uses that, and says that she will be able to love him is Artemis was dead, and if she continues helping them, her immortality will be preserved. What Anthea doesn't know is that the boy was sent by the antagonist to lure her into helping them.
That's basically the general idea. I wanted to know what you guys think of it, and if maybe you'd like to help with the actual writing itself? I do want to keep working on Forests of Bakazak (Those of you who haven't, I'd appreciate if you could read it: just-me-in-the-dark.blogspot.com), but I think the idea I have here isn't all that bad.

Thanks :D


Hey! So, I really want y'all's opinion on something I've been writing. Tell me brutally, honestly what you think- too happy, too silly, too predictable, too dumb, not worded well, not written well, too repetitive etc. :P
CRITIQUE ME! :D [oh, and sorry for the text size. It was being annoying, and my only options were tiny or biggish. xD]


Winifred May's auburn eyes were closed. She slowly swung her right arm in an arc, fingers curling and uncurling. Her hair was blond and thick. It wasn't that typical kind of "popular girl" hair, though. It was cut so that it was longer in the front, on the sides, and got shorter in the back but for a long, thin pony-tail coming out from underneath.

 Lightening fast, her fingers pointed, she struck the air in front of her. A spark shocked the point she struck. Her legs were apart in a careful stance, but she swayed slightly. Her left arm moved again, this time, slowly dragging through the air from one side to the other, but unexpectedly, her eyes shot open, and she jumped as if dodging an invisible attack.
Her body seemed to move without a thought, hands striking, chest weaving, and sometimes, she would jump to the side.

 Each strike from her caused a shock at the point and a tingling sensation. She jumped back once more, this time, slamming both hands flat onto the ground, causing lightening to burst forth from the earth in front of her, showering dirt and grass.
Before she could stand, however, someone tackled her from the side. She yelped, surprised, and rolled with the person. A flash of black hair and winter blue eyes were all she could see, but she recognized him by the laugh he gave.

"Jeffery!" Winifred cried as she landed on top of him at the end of the roll. He wore a cocky grin, gazing up at her from where he lay, bits of grass in his pitch colored hair.
"What?" he questioned innocently.
"I was practicing!" She poked his chest before shoving off and standing up, running her hand through her disheveled hair, furiously.
"Oh..., really?"
"Yes, really." she replied, ignoring the sarcastic tones in his voice. She looked at the cotton speckled sky above, trying to calm her fluttered nerves.

  She couldn't believe she hadn't seen or heard him coming. There was no one out here but her. All around was green grass and dirt with a few trees spread out sparsely, most of them weeping willows.
Jefferey stood up, brushing off his jeans. "Well, I was helping you, then wasn't I? Yeah, that's what I was doing. I wanted to help you practice. You do know that you're going to have to expect attacks from the side, right?" He grinned again and winked his gorgeous aqua eye.

Jeffery had been Winifred's best friend practically since they were toddlers. He had been grouped with her as comrades years ago, and they had found each other suitable companions so they had been best friends for a long time.

She turned to the side to keep him from seeing her half-smile, never able to stay angry at him for very long. Finally, she gave up and looked back at him, grinning. "Ok, fine, I forgive you."

"Forgive me, what? What on earth could I possibly need forgiveness for?" Oh, the sarcasm was building.
She rolled her autumn eyes. "Well, I just don't know, but I'm sure there's something you need forgiveness for, so be happy you got it anyway.
He laughed, giving her a slight shove. She looked at him, a cunning smile showing on her face, "Oh, you want to go that way, do you?"

"Not a bad idea," Jeffery replied, "loser buys the ice cream. You know what I like." He winked again, falling back into a stance, legs apart, arms in front, protecting his face, and fingers pointed straight.
Winifred only chuckled, taking her own stance and examining him. His black hair was as ruffled as ever, but his eyes portrayed an intelligence and determination you wouldn't have expected. He was clothed in simple torn jeans and t-shirt depicting a show called Firefly. Whereas she was in her shinobi shizoku, which was basically a ninja suit. He was already at a disadvantage, for she had much more maneuverability. She smiled a slight, secret smile as they stood facing each other, birds twittering in the trees.
Never one to wait, Winifred dashed forward three steps, dodged his thrust, and parried with a swipe from the right. Her throw connected, sending a jolt up his arm, weaker that what she could have done, but painful all the same. He danced back, shaking his arm a little as his grin was replaced with that typical, Jeffery-might-be-in-trouble expression. Winifred's eyebrows went up and down tantalizingly, "Hey, I thought we were going to spar! What are you doing over there, hm?"

He forced a smile, "Good question," and ran towards her. This time, however, he didn't use his fighting skills alone. He fingertips turned slightly blue.
She weaved under his swipe, giving a thrust of her own that sent tingles down his leg, but when she came back up, her shoulder was hit by his icy fingers. Chills shivered up and down her arm, slowing her movement. She grimaced, but took the advantage of his leaving himself open and kneed his stomach.

Jeffery gasped, jumping out of the way of her following swipe, and came back with a high kick, which winded her. Winifred swung her head back, her blond hair getting out of the way, and stepped forward, trying to use her advantage of movement by a range of high and low attacks. Jefferey, however, intended to continue his plan of attack and slow her. Speed was her main asset. If he could restrict that, he could win. He blocked a diagonal slice, stabbing her belly and already weakened shoulder. Frigid numbness oozed through her veins.

Winifred grunted from the blows, but saw his oncoming swipe from above and blocked it, shoving him back and seeing her opportunity- his unprotected throat. Her fingers, at a point, stopped just an inch from it, but still sent a shock down his spine. He looked at her, swallowed, and dropped his arms to his side, backing up before he sat against a tree. She had won very abruptly.

She grinned. "Got'cha!"
Jeffery laughed, shaking just a bit from Winifred's electricity. "Yup, guess you did, but at least I still got the element of surprise."
She shook her head, "Yeah, yeah, I know you don't like losing, but don't worry, I'm sure you'll have a real comeback next time."
He shrugged, realizing his response was a bit weak.

"Hey!" Winifred yelled, suddenly grabbing his arm and pulling him up, "You were going to buy me ice cream! And I don't care how freezing I am already, thanks to you, I want my ice cream."
"Ok, ok," he replied, smiling at her and putting his arm around her shoulder to warm her up. "Let's get some ice cream, then."

Twelve Years Earlier

Jeffery September was five years old, and he really just wanted to go home and eat some ice cream. "Where are we going?" he whined.
"I told you," said a woman with crimson hair in the driver's seat of the car they were in, "we're going someplace special where you can learn to use your..., well, special powers."
Jeffery frowned, "I didn't mean to hurt that lady! I was just trying to touch her pretty bracelet. Where's Mommy and Daddy?"

The woman didn't answer for a moment, instead, focusing on driving in the dark. "Well, Jeffery, we know you didn't intend to hurt her. Don't worry about that; she'll be ok.... But, sweetheart,  your mommy and daddy don't want you anymore." She didn't want to do this. Why did they have to send her for the pick up jobs? She hated lying to five years olds. Jeffery had started crying, "You're lying!" Which was completely true.

"Don't worry," the woman spoke quickly, not knowing what to do with a crying child. "We have a wonderful place set up for you and-" she was interrupted by her cell ringing, playing the Spiderman theme song. She glanced down at it and answered, saying, "Agent Iris speaking..... Yes..., yes, I've confiscated the child... Well, he's crying, but I'm almost there now.... Yes, that's him... Alright, I will.... out."

Iris glanced in her rear-view mirror at Jeffery who was rubbing his eyes. His cheeks were red, "Hey, don't cry. It's ok."

"I want my mommy." Iris didn't really know what to say, but she felt bad for the lad.

"You know what?" she spoke brightly

Jeffery, frowning, looked up, "What?"
"You're going to have a new friend soon! Yeah, that's right! In just a few moments, you're going to meet a little girl about your age named Winifred May, and you're going to be friends for a long time too! Doesn't that sound fun?"
Jeffery mumbled back, "I don't know. I guess, but girls are kinda bossy.... Can we have ice cream when we get there?"

Iris smiled, happy she could calm him down somewhat, "as a matter of fact, you most certainly may! What flavor do you like?"

"Well, chocolate's good, but..." his tone fell again, "I would always share with Daddy." Iris frowned, remaining silent, as Jeffery yawned.

They pulled up to a tall, cement wall with a metal gate blocking the way. Iris rolled down her window, punched a code into a little machine, and said, "Iris Jade Callahan." A computerized woman's voice said, "Welcome, Agent Callahan," as the gate swung open before them.

I don't think...

...that I'm going to write 'ambitiously' for awhile. I think I'm going to drift back with it for a hobby. Get a hop on my fan fictions again. It's just... I'm not really getting any particular place with my book stories, and I just need a few weeks or months (hopefully not years) to get my ideas collected.

So I'm gonna wait. Daydream. Sit in trees and yell at birds or something. Doodle in notebooks. Become friends with my Team again (long story. My beloved characters that you bloggers never see enough of. I LOVE YOU GUYS! BOTH OF YOU!).

I think when summer comes I may get back in the ambitious book boom. But for now... I'm gonna chill with paper March and Scarlet who are on my bulletin board. Which is on my wall. Which is in my room.

Go figure. Heh. 

I'm still gonna be on the blog, tho. Little bit less on the chat. I like the old ideas of the blogs, where we came and talked. Now it's kind of ruined.


Oh, and I'm teaching Mir the way of a hallway ninja.


I need to get this out, so here goes nothing..

I'm feeling really down these past three or so days.
It's a combination of loads and loads of reasons, but I think the main one is me thinking too much. I'm being paranoid and annoying myself and I want it to stop. And I figured maybe writing everything would help.
One thing I've thought too much of - mostly because of my down, I guess - is last year. I was depressed, and it was because I had a boyfriend, and he had cheated on me, and then broken up with me, via cellphone. I've talked to him pretty much twice since then, and that was all nearly a year and a half ago. He hurt me, and for months and months I was empty, and, well, heartbroken. I didn't show it to anyone. I kept a smile on, and carried on, shoving the pain away when I was around others, and on the constant verge of tears when I was alone. That was my life for quite a long time..
Then came last year's summer holidays, and it got better. I had somehow come to realize that I just didn't have feelings for him anymore, even though there was still quite a strong echo of the pain. I knew I had to find someone else, someone better, to be in love with, just to make sure I was really over it. Twice during the summer holidays, I thought I found someone. But.. I was forcing myself to like them. It was unnatural. So it didn't work.
Then the schoolyear started again, and I was back to a dull routine again. Wake up, go to school, get back from school, eat, watch tv, sleep. That is, until September 18th.
I was on facebook, and I don't know why, but I decided to check if any of the people who I knew from when I lived in England, 5 years ago, had a facebook. And then I saw that one of my better friends from back then, one I had actually thought of quite a bit when reliving memories from then, had finally got a facebook. We started talking, and since then, pretty much never stopped. This time, it was completely natural. The first few conversations we had were just finding out that we had almost everything in common. It built up inside of me, until, when I was writing his birthday present, it just hit me that he was everything I had ever wanted. He was perfect. And he lived 3800 km away.
I shoved those thoughts aside, at first. I was positive that he just didn't see me like that. That even if the odds were in my favour and he did, then it would be impossible due to the distance. But I could no longer ignore those thoughts. In all of my poems, I had inserted hints. You couldn't possibly know what or who they were referring to if you didn't know I liked him. But I knew. And that helped, for a while.
And then I found out I was going to be in England, on vacation with my family, and I felt I just had to tell him then. December 22nd, we met, in the flesh, and it was amazing, but I couldn't find the words. I thought that I had completely missed my chance. In the airport, on our way to the flight back to Israel, two days later, I was so annoyed at myself. I didn't want to leave without telling him. I couldn't. So I did. The departure gate had wifi, and my dad had a laptop, and the laptop had skype. On December 24th, I told him I liked him. I was shaking all over with excitement, my heart fluttering, when he told me he didn't know what to say, but he was smiling so much. I didn't want to leave, but boarding had started. I couldn't sleep during the flight, even though it was a night flight. Regardless of the fact that I never sleep on planes, I was rushing with happiness and adrenaline. And when I got home, after a 13-hour-long sleep, we talked. While I was on the flight, he wrote that he likes me too.
And, well, it's been nearly four months since then. And in two months and 12 days, I'm going to see him again, for the first time as a couple. And I can't wait.

Wow, writing this has helped. I feel better. I've just relived the best time of my life.
Anyway, thanks, Pyro. For everything good in my life.


Hello, fellow members of spg.

As many of you probably know, Pottermore is now open to the public (yay!) and alot of us are already members.

So, here are some of our usernames:

Robin Snowscar – FireboltSparks10442
Flame Phoenix - MoonSkull165
Red Waterfall- SilverGoblet11
Reginald- AccioThestral107
Lynxia Lost - SunNimbus21049
Nixion Strange-WatchMirror20729
White Willow - MistNettle29450
Pink Rose- AshCentaur16808
Octaboona Ambrosius- SkySeeker1152
NJ Maverick- DraconisGhost30741
Mar-Chu - JinxScarlet24582
Isabella Midnight- ScaleErised17605

Kallista Pendragona- QueenPotion14099
Vivianna Spark- DawnAvis5950
Thalia- MidnightWombat6678
Lavender Hope- SpellDust31518
Taia DeMars- SandSparks931
PyroDawn Tyromant- WildShadow14316

If people join Pottermore and you want to add us as friends on there, put your name in the comments below, please, and I'll add you in here.

Have a nice day!

Lightning-Fast 25k

Just got to 25k on Gepard Valk (which I got back yesterday!) and am ridiculously happy. I just *know* I'm going to finish this one. I can feel it in my heart. I love the characters, plot, the world the live in... and, of course, the romance! Yeah, yeah, I'm a guy and I love romance. Whatever, I'm gay, it works. :P 

So, here's a bit of romance for you!

            “Close your eyes,” Quinn instantly said. Doing as he was told, Gepard shut them, blocking out all source of light except the dancing stars inside his lids.
            Something clanged against metal, then there was something hot against his lips.
            “Open,” Quinn instructed. Gepard opened his mouth and felt an amazing taste of chilli. He swallowed and smiled.
            “That’s really good. Though, I think I know something better.” Opening his eyes, Gepard could see the curiosity on Quinn’s face. His arms acted of their own accord, reaching for her hips, drawing her in closer.
            “Gep…” Quinn didn’t end her sentence. She just closed her eyes and waited. Gepard leaned in, his head slightly bent down, and kissed her. Their lips connected, fighting for dominance. Gepard won out, Quinn’s lip between his own. He felt her breath on his tongue, soft and hot. He pulled her in closer, needing more. Seeming to have the same idea, Quinn opened her mouth a little wider, Gepard’s tongue tracing the edges of her lips. Then the kiss ended and they both opened their eyes.
            “It’s taken you years to do that,” Quinn said, smiling. “But I’m glad you finally did.” Taking his hand in hers, Quinn led Gepard into his room. They huddled together in the bed, watching each other.
            “I was scared it would ruin our friendship. Us being together.” Gepard brushed his fingers along her cheek. “But I couldn’t help myself anymore. You’re just so beautiful.”
            “Shut up.” Quinn smiled and kissed him, forgetting the rest of the world.

So, I hope you liked my romance! I've never written romance like that (intimate) before, so I hope it's good. Mind commenting on whether it's good or not? And if it is, why? If it's not, what can I improve on?

I can't think Of a title.

Haaaaai! How ironic! I never expected you people to be here! XD

...Okay, maybe I did. But I have a question for you people and didn't know how to start the post.

I'm starting another story idea (Skyril, Thalia and...Mir? You guys know what I'm talking about). Happened spontaniously when I was looking at pictures of girls with pink hair and was in the mood for mysterious and non-sensical magical stuff. Y'know, MY kind of stuff. It takes place in an alternate Earth, where paranormal creatures exist, but there's a lot of descrimination against them.

The thing is, the main character, Olivier, is a Major in the Paranormal Investigations and Control Agency (She's the one with the pink hair). And earlier before she joined, she left her home, dyed her hair, and got a few...genetic jobs. To put it bluntly. It's all the rage with the teens in the the alternate Earth. Ha. Ha ha.


Anyway, the has this major secret that she has to hide from the Paranormal Agency (That's a cool short version. Just throw out everything in the middle...).

I had a short version where I had the readers figuring it out (The secret) as the book went along. HOWEVER, that would prevent the readers from really getting to know Olivier personally (And now that I think about it, ex out any possibly pairings with her). But that also puts in an excellent sub-plot of certain people finding out about a certain secret.

The other version, you find out about Olivier's secret in chapter one, and she meets...people, and fluff stuff happens. :3 That one's more confidential~

My question IS! What would YOU people prefer? What sounds more interesting to you?

Comment and tell me! Or my toaster will maul you.

Is it just me...

or does the new Blog format tend to annoy? Just throwin' that out there. Anywho, I have created this post to actually receive advice, so if you are reading this post, please comment with advice. Here's my problem: I am 12,000 words deep into the creation of this book. I literally woke up on night, grabbed my SmartPhone, and jotted down 7,000 words of First Chapter epicness. It was awesome. And the book's going great, but I'm being drawn to a COMPLETELY different creation, that's forming in my head, and I don't know what to do with it. Should I keep my focus on the book thats already 12,000 words in, and going good, or should I move onto this other idea. My fear is, that once I move onto this other idea, my first creation will shrivel up from lack of use and die. I don't want that to happen. Please help.

Oh, looky here, 15k!

Yuppers, I got to 15k a few days ago, and I didn't tell you! Yeah, that's right. Deal with it, shorty/tally/medium-heighty. I really like this novel. I do, I do, I do. Now I'm just trying to fill up space in this post so it's not as short as you think it is. I'll post two chapters for you to fill it up.

The months had grown shorter—I barely noticed they were gone. I’d done nothing, just lied in bed and drowned my sorrow with sleep, where I saw my parents. Where I could touch them, talk to them, stare at them. Where I could just be with them.
            Aunt Lyd had tried to get me to come out of my room. To do something active. I ignored her a lot now. She’d grown so desperate she’d even sent Cam, who was now back at school. I’d only talked to him a few times... and he hadn’t been rude, per say, but he hadn’t been the Cam I needed to lean on either.
            The only thing that had actually kept me going at all, the only thing to keep me waking up instead of drifting off to my parents forever, was Andro. I’d thought about going to see him, but I couldn’t. When I tried, my body fell weak, my head lightened too much, my muscles ached, and I wanted to sleep—to go back to my parents again.
            I’d also started having odd dreams, involving the white wolf from outside the kitchen window, and the statues from the Statue Garden. In my dreams, they moved, like the marble and cement they were made out of was cloth, easy to move, even making irritating sounds when they rubbed together. The statues all stood around in me in my dreams, the wolves crying, their tears streaking their cement bodies, whilst the Guardian stared at me, as if sizing me up—she probably thought I was nothing, a tiny vessel dirtying her sacred land. I never moved, though, just stared back at her, daring her to say something rude, or make a move at me. She never did. And after a time of watching each other, the white wolf came in, from behind me, to sit down at me side, resting his head against my jeans-covered thigh. Then it all started to fade when I woke.
            My eyes slowly opened at the sound of a knock on the door. Aunt Lyd, probably.
            “Hello?” came her muffled voice through the wood. “Zelda, are you awake?”
            “Yes.” It’s been weeks since I’ve spoken and my voice sounded hoarse and unnatural.
            “Will you eat?”
            “Yes.” I was starving. If I didn’t eat, I’d die. And if I died, I wouldn’t see Andro, I wouldn’t be able to help Cam—the only reason I hadn’t gone with my parents. So, I guess he kind of saved my life. Damn it.
            The door opened and Aunt Lyd came in. She was much better, not sick anymore. She carried a bed tray that held a plate with two sliced of buttered toast and a glass of orange juice. Setting it down beside me, she asked, “Are you feeling any better?”
            “I guess.” I looked at her and saw how puffy her eyes were, the redness of her face. “I’m going to go out today.” I knew she would smile at this, and she did. It made her happy.
            “That’s great. Really. It’s good you’re getting out. I was worried, Zel… you missed their funeral.” That struck me, took the breath from my lungs and nearly threw me back to wallowing in my bed. I hadn’t even realized that my parents were going to be buried, put deep in the ground where their bodies would rot into nothingness.
            I turned my head away and looked out the window to the faintest ray of sunlight before speaking. “Yeah, well…” I didn’t say anything else, I just waited until Aunt Lyd got up and left. Then I got up and went for a shower. I was still upset... depressed, really, but it was about time I stopped lying around in bed. My parents would be ashamed to see me like that...
            The water ran down my skin, leaving red marks for a second, before they disappeared. I washed myself and jumped out, towel wrapped tightly around my body. After drying and dressing, I went downstairs where Aunt Lyd was buttering toast whilst humming ‘Humpty Dumpty’.
            “Here,” she said, smiling. She held out the toast and I gratefully took it, smiling back. I took a bite and melted with the deliciousness. “So, where are you going today?”
            I knew exactly where I was going, but whether Aunt Lyd needed to know was something else... so I lied. “Um, just around. Maybe the library.” And suddenly I remembered book, the one Andro had gotten for me. I dropped what was left of my toast and ran up the stairs, nearly breaking down the door of my bedroom. Why was in such a rush to get the book, anyway?
            Because I knew it held something. Something that would maybe clear up all these weird happenings—the wolf, the statue, the missing pages from the book downstairs, the fall from the window... maybe even my weird dreams. Maybe.
            My head swivelled from left to right and back again. There, under the bed, a corner of it peeking out from under one of my hoodies. I ran over and grabbed it, nearly tearing the cover off as I pulled it open. Reading the contents, I didn’t have a clue what I was looking for. Maybe wolves, or free-falling?
            I slid my finger along the page as I searched, stopping when I found it. Wolves of Rossbane, page fifty-four. The pages smelled old and worn as I flicked through them until I came to chapter seven. I started to read aloud.
            “Rossbane has always had wolves, though many think it untrue. The truth, though, is that Rossbane was founded in a forest where wolves ruled. Though not always seen, the wolves were still there, watching the humans destroying their land. They revolted, attacking the town, until the people of Rossbane fought back using all at their disposal. The people won, sending what was left of the wolves back into hiding.
            “But with the wolves, went people. Not all, but some. The people went with the wolves because they were the wolves—one of the same being. It is said that the humans became the animals, and the animals became humans. Werewolves, as they say. The werewolves, in human form, hid their secret when they returned to town. No one suspected anything, no one recognized the people who had fled. They blended in with society, only changing form when needed.
            “But with the privileges of being normal cam the consequences of hiding themselves. They let off a strong scent that signalled other unnatural beings. The beings ransacked the town, their forms different—some were bears, some were humans, some were horses. All different beasts. The wolves of Rossbane gave themselves up to protect the people of the town, only to be saved by a beautiful woman with a deadly sword. Some referred to her as the Guardian, others said she was a god. No one really knows who she was, because once she had defeated the town’s enemies she went into the woods with the wolves, never to be seen again.”
            I stared at the pages, not actually able to understand the words that lay on them. Werewolves? The Guardian being real? Weird people-bears and people-horses… was that even physically possible? And why had Cam told me to read this? I mean, he’d already told me kinda when I asked about werewolves, but I hadn’t expected it to be true… but then again, maybe it wasn’t. Maybe, like Cam had said, it was a fable. But I felt, deep down, that it was true, or some twist of the truth, at least. That something supernatural was in Rossbane, and that I owed it to myself, because of all these freaky happenings, to find out what it was.
            I shut the book and laid it on the bed beside me, the silky sheets soft on my fingers, slipping between them. This place was so strange… and it was my home now, too. I had nowhere else to go. Only here. I couldn’t go back to my friends, I’d have to make new ones.
            “Zelda, honey, are you okay?” Aunt Lyd called from downstairs. Probably wondering why I’d bolted up here.
            “Yeah… yeah, just fine!” I called back. I grabbed the book and stuff it into my back pack that had various items inside—for various emergencies. I slung the back pack over my shoulder before rushing downstairs. Pulling open the front door, I shouted to Aunt Lyd, “Going to the library, be back soon!” Then I took off, heading for the distant forest.
            It wasn’t long before I got there, after running through the yard, over the hedge that bordered Aunt Lyd’s property, and jumping over a tiny stream. The trees dominated the crisp-blue sky, shadowing the land around them, their branches thick and their leaves falling. Brown. Yellow. Green. Red. Orange. The colours that surrounded me. The smell of the forest wafted through me, pulling my body towards it. I obeyed.
            Inside, it was dark, only patches lit by tiny rays of sun. The rain from a while ago still lingered everywhere, like teardrops on the trees. I could smell something else… something familiar. Wet dog? Yes. That was it.
            I guess dogs could live in here. I mean, why not? It was a refuge for wild animals. And there was definitely plenty of them, some I could hear nearby, probably wondering why I was her. Some I could hear singing high above me, and some stood near me. Squirrels. I’d only ever seen a squirrel once in Ireland, and that had only been a glimpse before it ran up a tree. These squirrels were bright-brown, their tails bushy and wet. Their eyes lingered on my own as I looked at them, before they took off up a tree. Oh well.
            I pushed forward, going deeper and deeper into the forest. I knew what I was looking for… well, I didn’t, but I had an idea. And I hoped that one would be nearby, to cure me of my insanity, to make me realize that what I was actually believing for some forsaken reason was true. That book had done nothing but make me more curious, bring to light what I had thought was already there. Maybe what I might find in this forest would help even more.
            I didn’t know how long I’d been walking—a half hour, maybe—when I heard a twig crack to my left. My head shot to the spot where I’d heard it, catching a blur of white. Had I found what I’d been looking for? I waited, frozen like ice. There, again, another crack. I didn’t move my head this time, for fear it would run away. I wanted to lure it out, make it come to me. And it did, after a long pause. I felt its cold breath against my skin before I felt its nostrils flare. I could hear, its tongue wet and lolling out of its mouth. Was it being playful?
            Slowly, I turned, looking down to see it. Pure-white, the wolf from the window. It was beautiful, its eyes shining like the sun of a summer’s day, illuminating the space before it which was my hand. It looked up at me, curious. I moved my hand towards it, but it backed away. I stopped. I didn’t want it to go. Nodding, as if understanding human qualities, the wolf came forward again, sniffing at my hand, before gently biting. Not penetrating my skin, but a soft gnaw. A greeting, perhaps?
            With my other hand, I pushed through his soft fur, relishing at the touch. The stray strands were reminds why I came here—like the strands, I shouldn’t have strayed from my mission. I looked down at the wolf.
            “Change,” I said. “Show me yourself.”
            It barked, backing away.
            “Don’t be afraid. I just want to know the truth. I won’t tell anybody.” I reached back out, and it came forward, pushing its head beneath my fingers, closing its eyes at my touch. I stroked him, ever so softly.
            “Can you understand me?” I asked.
            The wolf nodded.
            “Are you human?” I asked.
            The wolf nodded.
            “Do you live in Rossbane?” I asked.
            The wolf nodded.
            “Do I know you?” I asked.
            The wolf nodded.
            Suddenly, I felt the connection. Something snapped in my mind, sending images and thoughts and voices through my brain. I fell backwards, disoriented, then whispered, “No.”
            For they all whispered one thing, and one thing only: Cam.

“No,” I whispered again and again and again. It couldn’t be. I’d accepted the fact that werewolves could exist—it hadn’t really fazed me—but that Cam was one… it just didn’t feel right. I felt protective of him, even now when he was a wolf.
            He came up to me, his nose brushing my face. I rubbed his head and he whined.
            “Can you change back?” I asked.
            Cam looked at me, into my eyes. I looked into his, slightly squinting at the bright-yellow. He whimpered, stating an obvious No, I can’t, Zelda.
            “Not right now, but later?”
            He lolled his tongue out and nodded. At least there was that—he wouldn’t be stuck like this forever. Only a while longer till I would be able to really talk to him—to get all this straight.
            A thought occurred to me. “Are there others like you?”
            Cam nodded, his ears pricking at a sound near us. Probably an animal. I wondered if Cam ate the animals in this wood, like a normal wolf would do. I wondered if he did wolfy stuff, like run away if a human came close. I wondered how this had happened to him.
            I wrapped my arms around Cam, his white fur soft against my skin. We huddled together for what seemed like days, though when he finally did change it was barely dark.
            His fur fell to the ground, disappearing in puffs that floated up into the air, revealing skin underneath—human skin. His ears retracted, becoming round instead of pointed. His eyes returned to normal, but all those things didn’t bother me. What bothered me was when he yelped in pain as his legs began to break and his tail cracked and his neck twisted, his teeth pulled up into his gums, causing blood. He looked at me, a tear running down his face, asking for help. But I couldn’t do anything… I was useless.
            “Cam,” I whispered. But he turned away and fell, not getting up until his body had returned to normal. “Oh,” I said. I ripped off my jacket and passed it to him. He tied it around his waist, blushing slightly. “It’s okay, don’t be embarrassed.”
            I hadn’t realized until then just how strong Cam was. He had muscles! The ones you saw on TV with the American jocks. He was not my Cam. And I was not my Zelda anymore.
            “I’m not embarrassed.” He winked slyly. Ew. “So… um, yeah.”
            “You’re a werewolf,” I said.
            “Shifter, actually,” he corrected.
            “The difference being?”
            “The difference being there’s whole other groups of Shifters out there. They don’t just take the form of a wolf. It’s what they chose.”
            “Why’d you choose a wolf?”
            “I didn’t. The First did. The First was the first Shifter in Rossbane. He chose the form of the wolf then passed it down through his genes.” That made sense, considering wolves practically showed up on everything here.
            “Wait a second!” I gasped, having a thought, “Does that mean the Guardian of the Shifters was real?”
            “To be honest, I’m not quite sure. The pack only knows so much about what we are through some diaries that were badly burnt. And all we found out there was that the pack before us—which was about one hundred years ago—had to be protected for some reason.”
            “What do you mean ‘about one hundred years ago’?”
            “The last pack, that’s when it was. It’s kinda confusing but the only time the Shifter gene comes out is in puberty, and when there’s another Shifter group nearby. That’s why we changed—we found out there’s another group a town over. We haven’t had direct contact, but we can feel their presence.”
            “That’s so cool” I squealed. “The presence-feeling bit. I don’t like hearing your bones break and seeing you shed—it’s weird. Wait, so you dissed school to break your bones?” I raised an eyebrow accusingly.
            “No. I’m sixteen; still a teen. That means my body’s still “changing”,” he said, creating air-quotes around changing, “so I change whenever my body feels like it. I don’t get a say in the matter, until I’m older. But, even though I’d love to never feel the pain of shifting again, we have to change at least once a month or our body will do it for us, whether we’re in plain sight of everyone in town or not.”
            We sat in silence for a minute, then I asked, “Who else is one of you?”
            “The people dub them Misfits.”
            Oh. Now it makes sense—the group of people causing all the trouble and smoking are obviously not bad people at all. Nope, no way would they be that. I mean, I bet it’s the wolf inside that needs a smoke now and again, not them,” I said, my words drowning in sarcasm.
            “Zel…,” Cam started. He stopped and looked down at the ground, reminding me of the shy boy I used to be inseparable from. And I felt bad, so I moved forward and hugged him; not too tight, but not too soft either because I wanted it to last—I wanted have one of our old hugs. He smelled of sweat, and of wet dog—so it had been him I smelled when I’d entered the forest—and of Cam. Cam always smelled of rain. Always.
            “Is this why you’ve been a jerk? You didn’t want me to find out?” I asked as he broke our huh.
            “Yeah. I’m sorry Zel, really, I am. It’s just, the pack doesn’t want anyone knowing, and I agree with them wholeheartedly because if people found out what we were we probably be burnt at the stake. But, now that you know, you know—end of the secret.”
            “I’m hardly going to tell the whole town,” I said, feeling like he’d just personally attacked me. Did he think I was a gossip? Even if I was, who would believe me if I told them the misfits were actually Shifters who turned into wolves at random times because they were going through puberty? No one.
            “I know that. I’m just saying...”
            “Saying what, Cam? Huh?” I glared at him, waiting for his answer.
            “I’m just saying that once someone finds out about something, everyone else does too.” His eyes had hardened, gone a deep shade of brown.
            I stood up and held out a hand. “You coming?” I asked.
            Cam smiled and replied, “Of course, Zeldar.” Use of the nickname he had for me? Was I finally going to get him back? I smiled back and he took my hand.
            When we got back to the house Cam threw on some clothes happily and snuck over to my room.
            “Can’t let Mom see me. She doesn’t know about me, or about school, so I’m gonna hide in here with you.”
            “I don’t want to be convicted for the abiding of a crime!” I exclaimed dramatically.
            “Oh, but you’re already part of it now,” Cam whispered. “You saw me change. That means you’re going to have to get involved with our activities. Can’t leave you up here on your own while we run around the forest. And plus, I know you want to see us all together as a pack.”
            Cam’s words wafted through my brain before dissipating. I’d been thinking about something else. “Cam,” I said, “do you know what happened that night? When we fell from the window?”
            Cam looked into my eyes, letting me know he was telling the truth. “No.”
            “But it has to be something to do with you, right? Because you’re a Shifter.” I still couldn’t believe it didn’t faze me that he was a shape-shifter. But I guess I had known in some aspect the whole time.
            “I don’t think so... I didn’t feel anything, like adrenalin or power. Maybe it was you!” he said, wagging a finger.
            “How could it be me? I’m not magic or whatever you call it, I’m just human. I’m normal.”
            “Well maybe normal’s not what it used to be.” Cam stuck his tongue out and I whacked him with a pillow, making him fall off the bed.
            “That’s what you get for being a jerk for so long!” I teased. He stared at me, his eyes ice-cold, before he suddenly leaped at me and brought me down on the bed. We laughed for a while before sitting up again. And then Came asked me about something I wished he hadn’t.
            “So, Zel, how’re you feeling about... your parents?” He said it so slowly that it stung with even more zing!
            “Can we... can we just not talk...” I wanted to finish the sentence, but I saw Mom and Dad in my head, their eyes staring blankly at the walls, their bodies red with flesh and black from being charred. The sight made me retch before tears gushed from my eyes. I hadn’t even noticed Cam had wrapped his arms around me and let my head lie on his chest until I’d stopped crying.
            “Shh,” he was saying. “It’s gonna be alright. I’m sorry. Shh. I’m here. I’m not going anywhere. Don’t worry, hon.” That’s when I saw his mother in him. Right there, when he said hon. I smiled.
            “You’re so like your mom,” I whispered, letting my head rest on him. This was what I needed—a best friend. “I hadn’t noticed till now.” Even the way he smiled reminded me of Aunt Lyd, and the way he hugged, too. One arm near the neck, one on the middle of the back; comforting.
            He laughed. “I know. I hate seeing her so upset, but it’s better to have her like that than have her know what I am. She’d be put in all sorts of danger.”
            “The other Shifters,” I said with sudden realization. “But why do they want to hurt you? And why can’t you just be nice to your mom?”
            “They don’t want to hurt us, per say, but they want our land. We’re animals when we Shift, and animals claim land, mark their territory. The other Shifters want as much land as they can get. But we’re wolves and wolves don’t really want land, they want to run, to explore. But we have to be careful not to stray too far, otherwise we might cross over the Boundary, and then there’d be a massive fight between us and the Shifters in the next town.”
            “The Boundary? Like, a line drawn?”
            “But what if they’re, like, rhinos? They’d be able to crush you...”
            “Shifters can only take the form of quadrupeds. And even then they have to be ones on land. I dunno, it’s really complicated. But anyway, we’re stronger than most animals. It’s our wolf-strength and human-strength combined, along with hearing and all the other senses. So that’s where the myth of that came about.”
            “Can other Shifters be wolves, too?”
            “Probably. Don’t want to meet them to find out, though.” He chuckled and our conversation ended. I wiped my sleeve under my eyes to get rid of any remaining tears. It was soft and I liked the feel of it on my skin—just another reminder of my mom, when she hugged me she would wrap her scarf around my neck in a loose loop.
            I forced myself to not shed any tears and I laid back on the bed, closing my eyes as the rain started up outside again.
A gentle touch to my shoulder was what woke me. I opened my eyes. The room was dark—really dark—which made me wonder how long I’d been asleep. I guess the day’s surprise took more out of me than I had thought it would.
            Another tap to my shoulder reminded me why I was awake at all. I looked over, nearly falling out of my bed at the sight.
            “What are you doing here? How did you even get in?” My voice came out harsh even though I hadn’t meant it to be.
            “I was really worried. I mean, I haven’t seen you in months! Oh, and I used the window,” Andro said, eyebrow raised as if it were the most obvious thing in the world.
            “A, this is the second floor! How could you get up here? B, you came in my window?! What kind of pervy stalker are you?” I turned my eyes into daggers, glaring at him. He fidgeted in my gaze.
            “Sorry,” he said, his eyes showing genuine softness, melting me, “it’s just, I felt something on our date, and I was just hoping you did too.” Actually, this was quite creepy, wasn’t it?” He gestured to the window and I nodded, but I couldn’t help but smile. Andro smiled back. He must really like me if he found out where I lived, climbed up to the second floor and shook me awake. Or else he was just a nut job, but I went with hopeless, wall-climbing, romantic and grabbed a tuft of his shirt around his chest. I could feel his skin, hot against my knuckles. We both looked into one another’s eyes before I pulled him in and kissed him.
            He kissed back. We moved in a flow, like we’d done it a million times before. I pulled him in closer and my arms wrapped around his neck. I realized his hands were on my hips, his fingers brushing against the exposed bit of skin between top and pants. But then it was over. My eyes were closed, my head was tilted slightly up, and I wanted more. I waited. And waited. When I finally did open my eyes Andro was gone.
            “What the hell,” I whispered to myself. Who does that?! What a dick. And I’d actually melted for him.