The boy and girl walked hand in hand until they reached the edge of the forest. The two had been walking in silence for quite some time now, ravishing the simplicity of each other’s company. Occasionally he would catch Cora peering up at him through her long eye lashes, only because he was sneaking glimpses of her. She looked absolutely ethereal, her beauty highlighted in the milky light of the moon. He admired the way her eyelashes cast shadows down her cheekbones, resembling spiked feathers dancing on her face whenever she tore her gaze away from his. Alex could hardly contain the happiness that was filling him up inside; he broke out into a spontaneous, ear-to-ear grin. He hoped Cora wouldn’t notice.
Once they stopped at the tree line, Alex gave Cora’s hand a squeeze. She turned to him, and began rubbing soothing circles into the back of his hand. Feeling the raised marks of scars, Cora brought his hand up to her face for better inspection. Her curiosity was piqued. She was positive that these types of marks weren’t from simply living in the wilderness for however long he had.
“I don’t mean to intrude on your personal life, but I’m curious as to where you got these rather prominent scars from,” Cora tried to maintain a soft tone in her voice, hoping that maybe Alex would catch on.
Alex tensed up, the memories clouding his thoughts and flooding his vision. The memories of horrific needles piercing his hands, the slice of a knife against his flesh when he was volunteered for experiments against his will. The wolfish grin of Ed Harding, the maniac in charge of the experiments, would be the last thing Alex saw before he succumbed to the anesthesia. He never remembered what happened to him. He just remembered the excruciating pain of the changes he would undergo. The boy felt his blood start to boil and his heart rate quickened with the adrenaline pumping through his muscles. It didn’t occur to him that this was just a memory; a nightmare he could pull himself out of. All Alex could see was red; he was ready to kill the mad man who inflicted all this pain on him.
“If I told you, you’d think I was a freak, and I wouldn’t blame you if you never wanted to see me again.” Alex clenched his fists against the fury that shook his body.
“I just want to trust that I won’t think you’re a freak,” Cora confessed in a whisper. She felt small when she reached her hand to touch his face again, hoping that her fingers could resurface some self-control in him again.