Two moons over, p.3
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       Two Moons Over, p.3

           Levi Shipley
 
His body chilled, and Cecil shivered violently.

  He laid down to rest for the night. Sleeping in would speed the recovery. He was tired and decided to call it quits early. A few minutes past eleven . . . might as well be next week. He was gone, sent to the land of dreams.

  In his dream a man spoke to him, a man he could not see. All around him was darkness and his feet found no ground for purchase. And yet he remained in place and listened to the voice. The words Cecil soon forgot, though they were important. A man somewhere told him of things past and things to come. It was beyond vivid but not the least bit lucid, yet Cecil lost the words. A faint blue aura came from the darkness, but was perfectly rimmed with blackness no matter where he looked. The voice told Cecil what he must do. It spoke of his origin, a lost lineage. And it spoke truth, the lost concept.

  Five

  Awake. Cecil glared toward his ceiling. Already? I'm exhausted . . . I was exhausted. He felt utterly renewed. He double-checked his alarm, noting that only half an hour passed. He ran over himself in the mirror. His shoulder wound healed. Not only that, Cecil could no longer feel the slightest bit ill. In fact, he never felt better. He waited a moment for his pain to set back in. Perhaps some medicines were masking the torments.

  He looked again to the mirror. He sensed a strength, a power, burning inside. Cecil couldn't hold; the feeling was too euphoric, madness would stem from such a state. He closed his eyes. Everything inside him shifted place. An energy coursed through him. He felt his muscles tighten as if cramping, and an immense pain wrapped around every nerve. What he felt was an electricity pulse inside him. Cecil changed.

  The mirror told no lie. What he saw he could never forget. He startled himself, as he studied the being within the reflective glass. A werewolf stared back. What an odd dream this is. Rare that a previous one would continue. I guess it doesn't matter. His mirror twin was clad in gleaming ebony fur. White tufts nestled in his elongated ears, while metallic black claws extended from his fingertips. An anomaly presented itself within the transformation. Rich royal blue fur cut swirling paths around his body. From the tip of his muzzle, it split, intersected, and danced down to his feet on separate waves. Even his tail twisted with black and blue.

  I think I’ll track her, should be easy now. Cecil remained quiet, until his parents retired for the night. He crept downstairs and sped from the back door. He found his movements unwieldy due to his complete physical boost. Cecil ran into the forest, tripping at his unusual speed. Much practice was needed to readjust everything he knew of his athletics.

  He'd never seen like this before. Cecil was the most dangerous forest creature now. A sense of security set in with this. No need to worry about his health, should he tumble down a bank. He trampled through thorns, but was unharmed. Even when he fell and struck his head, he felt no pain. Cecil hastened over the terrain, allowing his sense of smell to guide him.

  There she was, sitting under an apple tree with a green book in hand. The tree stood solo in a wheat field that radiated with its harvest. The mere aura drew Cecil closer, his curiosity waxing. Her fur shone like polished steel under the half moon. She wore leather boots and faded blue jeans topped with a black shirt. As Cecil approached her from behind, her nose flared and her ears rotated.

  "You could get into a lot of trouble, if you're not careful." She picked up a fallen apple and tossed it across the field. "Even if you're a werewolf, you’re not gonna get very far if you don't listen."

  Cecil moved to scratch his neck. "Uhh," He shook his head "I've only come to find you. Secondly, you didn't go very far . . . almost as if you wanted me to find you."

  She tilted her head back against the bark, ruffling her silver fur. She let out a sigh to show her contempt, "Did it ever occur to you that I was here first? As if you would think so far. Maybe you will eventually." She raised her left index finger and began picking her canines. "What do you want to know?"

  Cecil was bewildered by her manner of speech. She'd turn hostile and then amiable seconds later. She must be playing some kind of mind game on me. "Well, it's probably nothing serious. In fact, this is likely very common. But my fur isn't a traditional color. I've only seen you, and silver is a natural hair color." Though he said this, there was very little normality in her silver. It was something he couldn't explain. Cecil had seen gray hair on a number of people both old and young, but hers was unique. That hue had always been marked with a touch of death or sorrow, of withering and decay. Her coat, however, possessed a vibrant quality. It was young and still very much alive.

  To this point, she had dismissed his presence and only seen him with her sense of smell and hearing. Now she spun to examine him. Her reaction was a puzzled expression. She stood and circled Cecil, studying the blue streaks to confirm what she saw. After a thorough viewing, she returned to Cecil's front and gave him an empty stare. "I'm not completely sure what this means, but it is definitely important."

  "Is there any way to discern this?"

  "Yes. Our eldest member knows this pattern. I'll contact him." She nodded, still processing what transpired. "For now, you must get home before anyone knows you've left." She pointed at the eastern horizon. An orange glow emitted from those distant clouds.

  Cecil obeyed and commenced his return, but before she was out of sight, he looked back. "My name is Cecil Fauden!"

  She echoed, "Call me Salina!" At this, they both sprinted in opposite directions.

  Noon beat down on the realm with an unforgiving heat. Cecil's parents had both departed for work, leaving him free to reign the house. His mother left him a breakfast of cereal and a sandwich for lunch, but his appetite died. He drank a few cans of soda for the taste and decided to feed the animals to keep him busy.

  As he laced his work boots, his cell phone vibrated alerting him of a call. He answered to Cathrine's number.

  "Listen Cecil, I was wrong. Someone I trusted very much lied to me about you." Her voice was marred by sobbing. "She's been my best friend since we were in kindergarten. I thought I could trust anything she told me, but . . ."

  Cecil staggered. Again his mental train was derailed in a matter of days. His nerves were short circuited. "Oh. . . I, I forgive you Cathrine, but I need some time to think about this."

  "I understand. Oh Cecil, how could she do such a terrible thing?" Her voice was replaced by the sound of weeping.

  She didn't trust me. How do I know this won't happen again? I don't care. I just want her back. "It's fine. Are you okay?"

  Another sob. "Yeah, I'll manage." A pause. "Listen, let me make it up to you. My family got tickets to the ball game. I'd like you to come with, please. You forgive me?"

  Cecil's breath fled. His joy and confusion were overbearing, for he hoped she would take him back. He forced in air. "Of course. I wasn't upset with you to begin with." He added trying to sound sincere.

  "Wonderful! Meet me at my house Saturday morning, and we'll head off."

  "Sounds like a plan!"

  "Great!" Her voice lightened. "See you then. Buh-bye."

  "Farewell." The called ended. "I love you." His mind scrambled itself. Cecil was unsure if his decision had been wise. There remained a chance that she played with him. No, he knew her better. Did I just agree to a game on Saturday? I should probably give the folks a heads up about that.

  . As he placed a hand on the front door's brass doorknob, the hinges broke off, and the door was heaved into the yard. Cecil stood in shock. He faced a young couple. To his left was a woman slightly shorter than he. Her eyes were like cold emeralds hidden behind a curtain of blonde hair. To Cecil's right was a man with buzz cut almond hair. His left eye was green, and his right blue. He stood a few inches higher than Cecil.

  The man jumped, almost falling off the porch. "Oh good. You're here already, so we don't need to search your home."

  Cecil's nose detected familiar
ity; the female was Salina. He took a step back. "Why are you here?" Cecil had no fear for his life, but explaining the door to his parents would be tricky and irritating.

  The man lurched forward, grabbing Cecil by the arm and pulled him from the stone house. "There's no time to explain. It's very possible that we're too late as it is!"

  Cecil forced back and applied a balanced stance, "If you want to get wherever on time, at least give me your name."

  "I am Hodge, Hodge Olendar. Now move!" He grunted.

  Cecil complied for curiosity's sake. Later, as events settled, he would get information. For now, everyone had themselves far too worked up for dealing out answers. Cecil hopped from the porch and followed the two south.

  Their travel distance grew, and Cecil became distressed. They were now in central West Virginia from what he could discern, meaning he would be home well after dark were he to turn back; his parents would see a broken door and fear for the worst. Cecil would endure quite a lashing upon return. All things to deal with later.

  They stopped at the mouth of a small cave. Hodge led the party in to a back wall. It was clean and nature barren. Cecil felt a droning hum within his ears, a hollowness beneath his feet, and an artificial aroma. Hodge knocked on the wall. Three times, pause, four times, pause, two times and stop.

  The rock
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