I curled up on my side, carefully recounting the day's events in my mind. I'd run away from home, angry at my father; run into the only other winged person - besides my dad - I'd ever met; later, I'd encountered more of them; and now, here I was, laying in the barn, wishing desperately that I could get some sleep. What was the point now, though? It was around six. The sun was starting to come up.
I sat up, staring at the sunrise for a while, still letting my thoughts aimlessly wander through the events of the day. About five minutes passed, and I kept feeling more and more stressed by the massive pile of information that had been dumped into my lap today. Almost without thinking, I stood up. I backed myself up against the wall opposite the barn door, which was open just wide enough for me to get out. Then, I ran. I wasn't sure where I was going, but I ran. Out the door, a few feet beyond the barn, and out into the woods.
As I approached the edge of the tree line, I suddenly decided where I would go: the only logical place for a freak like me to go - up. I pushed my wings out, letting them slice the air around me for a second, before flapping down as hard as I could several times. I heaved myself into the air, and took flight in the general direction of town. I favored my sore wing - the one that had been shot - but I managed.
I soared for what felt like hours, just blocking out all thought and enjoying the sights. Once or twice, I think I almost collided with other, smaller creatures. A hawk chased after me for batting it with a wing, once. But I got away.
Then I saw it.
I was approaching town, and I turned to do a small semicircle in the air when I spotted two guys in suits. They were standing next to a couple of black SUVs, parked across from the cafe. As I flew over, one of the men pointed at me and they ran to their respective vehicles, taking pursuit. I wasn't sure what it meant, but by the shouts that I could hear coming from the cars, it was anything but good. I flew as fast and hard as I could across town, leading them on a wild goose chase, before descending in the middle of the woods. There, I carefully made my way back around the edge of the town, and back towards the farm. I couldn't risk leading them back there by flying, so I walked.
When I returned, the others had congregated outside the barn and were sipping various beverages, looking somewhat confused. They must have been looking for me, I figured. I ran the rest of the way to the barn, and waved as I approached.
"Aidan - where'd you go?" Lye asked me. "You were gone for, like, two hours at least, that's only judging by when we found out you were gone."
"I went out to get some fresh air," I said, not wanting to linger on the misery of realizing that I was on the run and potentially being hunted. "There were some men in town. They saw me, and they cahsed me. I managed to escape, but -"
"What kind of men?" Quinn cut in. "What did they look like?"
"They were wearing black suits, and they were driving black SUVs," I said. "Sounds like some cheesy sci-fi movie, I know, but -"
"I believe you." Quinn cut me off. Believed me? She actually didn't think I was out of my mind? "I know these people, and they're not to be screwed with."
"Well then who are they?" I asked, feeling all my frustration return. "Are they related to the ones that shot me, perhaps?" Now I was truly furious. "I want ANSWERS, NOW!"