Chapter 36: Don’t Interrupt the Lizard

Everything was seemingly perfect. No mob on her doorstep, no heavy cloak to hide under, and no spontaneous molting whatsoever (not that she actually molts). Everything was fine for the first time in her life, and she wasn't afraid to laugh or smile. There was no pressing need to look for berries before winter came so she wouldn't starve through the cold, nor was there any point in worrying about the weather and if she needed to take in shelter in a cave. Alkyra wasn't out of place, she felt as though she was in the warm embrace of the old man she had loved dearly. She almost began to think that this was the beginnings of a family.

While she previously had one of her own, she understood that families were meant to accept the uniqueness of a person such as Alkyra, but none of them truly shared blood with the "lizard girl", as they dubbed her. She had never met her true mother or father. At first, when the girl was young and nearly oblivious to the orange scales that marked her, Alkyra never thought of having any; "Mama" and "Papa" were just words, empty and they're only meanings were found in a dictionary. But she came of age and lost what innocence the old man filled her with, and everything came into perspective. She was alone in the world, having no living kin as far she knew.

And now...Well, Alkyra thought she was embracing the possibility of forming something close to kinship with these girls. Yes, their haven was dubbed the Sistren, and yes, the elf was the most willing to refer to her as a "sister". But actually forming a bond that matched those who shared blood and the earliest days of life was just too impossible of a dare for her to comprehend. So, Alkyra lounged lazily against the window frame while pretending to count the many books upon the shelves in the library. It was clear that she was lost in her own thoughts to anyone who could walk in. Not that anyone would.

Most of the girls disappeared to their bedrooms, ready to examine what goodies they bought. Maine on the other hand was silent as ever, disappearing to the garden for as long as she pleased. As for Eru and Aliryia? She noticed the absence of the former once several minutes had gone by and the elf did not leave her place at the porch. Alkyra didn't mind it very much. It seemed everyone needed to have a few hours to themselves, if not a brief moment while living at the Sistren.

Out of the blue, it seemed, Alkyra's comfortable isolation came to an end when the door clicked upon. At first she didn't even cast a glance, but something about the person's footing was off. Eru's steps were soft, much like Maine's (although hers seemed cautious), and she was just as familiar with the others', but the way this person carried him or herself was forced to be gentle, even though she easily noted that the visitor was heavier than her.

Her eyes shot to the person, a man by the looks of it, clad in light clothes and a satchel. Alkyra did not see his face as he turned hastily away from the library and ran. "HEY!" she had screamed before she took off after him, barefoot in her dress.

The nameless man was an excellent runner, but clueless as to where to go. Unknowingly, soon after he jumped several steps of stairs, he turned to his left and down the hall to the gardens. Thankfully, the lizard became familiar enough with the house to know where she was going and her speed increased. She was used to running barefoot through the forest, and the fact that her feet met only carpet rather than dirt and twigs made it so much easier for her to chase him down.

Nearing the opened doors that led to the gardens and his exit through the thick woodland, Alkyra knew she had to act then. The skirt of her dress clashed and wrapped wildly around her thighs, riding up (almost high enough to be deemed inappropriate), she forced her legs to move faster and summed up what strength she had and lunged at the man.

Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on whose tackling who), the man turned around to see how far Alkyra was from him just at the moment she thrust forward towards him. Next thing the intruder knew he was on floor, mere steps away from the garden, his potential escape, and underneath a very, very furious person.

Three things hit him: One, she was a girl; two, she had scales; and three, she was a girl with scales wearing a dress.

In complete and utter shock, he gazed up at Alkyra and at the infuriating expression upon her face that was framed by red locks that fell from its loose bun. The first words he heard from her were loud and frightening enough to make a child wet his pants, "Tell me your name, or I'll claw your eyes out!"

Clearly, words were wasted on the man because he was too stunned to speak...

The End

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