darkest nightMature

"A Winged One?" My voice comes out in a whisper and I realize I’ve been holding my breath. I quickly let it out in a gush.

Cade’s clearly agitated. He punches the chair, leaving a good-sized indent in the fluff. "Yes," he grumbles, "I’ve seen one. In centuries! Only one, and I killed it. If only I’d known…" He trails off, shaking his head.

"You had no way of knowing. We can find another." I hope, at least.
Cade straightens. "Yes, well. We’re having a meeting about this in five minutes." His eyes drift behind me to the cage. "Bring her."

His silent strides lead him out of the room and downstairs. I sigh, my shoulders drooping. I’ve always hated council meetings. They were always too urgent and important, and everyone basically hates me here. They don’t like me because I’m so young. Except for Ash and Emma, and Cade, I guess.

What does Cade plan on doing with Dove, now that he knows the secret? I can’t help but wonder.

I run a hand through my thick brown hair. My eyes scan the room, coming to a rest on Dove’s cage. She’s curled in a ball, her fists laying on both sides of her face. Her fragile chest moves up and down with each breath. She seems almost peaceful.
Almost.

I stride over to the cage, watching in wonder as the Darkness evaporates as I step closer. Cade must be releasing it, as well as Dove. I’m surprised he trusts me this much with her.

I lean over her. "Dove," I whisper.
No response.
"Do-ove," I call a little bit louder.
Again, she gives no response. She must be a heavy sleeper.
I drop to my knees, placing my hands on her shoulders. "Dove." I shake gently. "Dove."

A tiny hand snakes up and she rakes her fingernails across my cheek. Startled, I jump back, right before she nails her fist into my stomach. I buckle over, groaning, although the pain isn’t nearly as intense as it would be for a human. But she’s strong, and it still does hurt. I put a hand to my cheek, pulling it away and seeing a little bit of blood.

Dove’s standing now, her green eyes cutting icily into me. She wipes her nails on her pant leg. "Don’t you ever touch me again."

I cough, wiping my cheek on my sleeve. "There’s a meeting downstairs," I respond coolly. Find. If she wants to jump straight to hostilities, why not? "Hope Cade’s not hungry."

The End

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