Syl kept frowning to our left. To our right was open land. I could see a far distance but there didn't seem to be anything out there. It made me nervous.
I had inherited my father's enhanced sight. He said it was my gift from the goddesses but only fools believed in things like that.
"What's wrong?" Galan asked her.
The sun was going down and I would have to rest soon. I could already feel my legs burning but I did my best to hide my discomfort.
"I feel like something's watching us," she said quietly.
We stopped walking and looked to the forest. I squinted my eyes but I couldn't see anything. I shrugged and led on.
"It's probably an animal," I said offhandedly.
"You didn't see anything?" Kilyn asked.
"Aren't there supposed to be things elves can't see, though?" Rina asked nervously.
"And we don't know what's out here..." Syl added.
"You guys are worrying yourselves for no reason," I said.
"Yeah," Folen said and threw his arm around Syl's shoulders. "Besides, you've got us big strong he-elves to protect you."
She scofffed and pushed him off of her. "And yet a she-elf beat you in combat."
"That was practice," he sulked.
We laughed and I relaxed a little. Being around my friends always made me feel better. We joked around until we came to the top of a hill. I looked around. There was a decent spot to rest by the forest and I led them to it.
"Do you need a fire?" Kilyn asked.
"I brought a blanket," I shrugged. "I don't see any dead branches, anyway."
We hated killing trees. It was a terrible act but, from what Mother told me, humans had to do it to survive sometimes. The thought made me uncomfortable so I spread out my blanket and used one of my other clothes as a pillow. We passed around some food and looked around us.
Folen pointed to the west. "I've heard of rain clouds. Do you think that's one of them?"
I followed his finger. A large wall of clouds was slowly making its way over to us.
"Isn't rain falling water?" Rina asked with a frown. "Like our waterfalls?"
"Sort of," I answered. "Mother told me it comes down in drops. Sometimes there's a lot but other times there's very little. She said it depends on the density and color of the clouds. As dark as those are looking, it might rain pretty heavily."
"Well, that will be our first experience of the seasons," Galan said excitedly.
The others nodded but I wasn't listening. I had heard something in the trees. My ears twitched and Kilyn's head snapped to the right. Her gift was hearing and I was positive she had heard it, too.
I jumped to my feet and docked an arrow. I pointed it into the trees.
"Who's there?" I demanded.
Nothing responded. Everyone else was sitting as I pulled back my arrow. I heard more movement to the left and I let the arrow loose. A woman's scream pierced the air. I ran into the trees, Folen following. I saw a bizarre sight.
A woman was slowly getting better. Her outfit was just of leaves and the arrow was sticking outside of her left leg. I saw a pair of silver wings under her and my jaw dropped. Another fairy was getting bigger beside her. He pulled the arrow out and I turned to Folen.
"Can you heal fairies?" I asked.
"I don't know but I don't need to," he said and pointed.
The male fairy had his hand over the injured fairy. He muttered a few words and the leg healed over. He helped her to her feet and, out of nowhere, I was bound in vines.
"Hey!" I shouted, falling over I struggled. "Let me out of these!"
"Who are you?" the female fairy demanded.
I glared at her. "I could ask you the same thing!"
She put a bare foot on my chest and looked curiously at my ears.
"You feel of elf yet you do not look like one," she said slowly.
The male fairy gasped. "It's true, Shea! It's the hybrid!"
"Hush, Sindri," she snapped. "This isn't funny. I told you not to follow that butterfly."
The male fairy looked down sheepishly.
"I was just trying to figure out how its wings worked."
The female fairy, Shea, rolled her eyes and turned her attention back to me. Folen had disappeared and I assumed he was getting the others.
"Who are you?" she repeated. "What is your name?"
"Let me go," I snapped and she smirked.
"Let me go. That's an interesting name."
I glared. "My name is Eroan, Shea. Now get off of me!"
"Why are you in our forest?"
"Get away from my brother!"
Kilyn jumped over a root, an arrow aimed for Shea's head. Shea stared at her for a second before stepping off of me. Galan rushed over and cut the vines. I stood and glared at the fairy and she matched it.
"Why did you attack us?" the male fairy, Sindri, asked. "We didn't do anything!"
"You could have been a predator," I snapped. "This is our first time out of the realm. We're not taking any chances." I gestured to Shea. "Besides, if she's going to attack me on first sight-"
"You attacked me first," she snapped.
Kilyn put her arrow back in her quiver but didn't take her eyes off the two fairies in front of us.
"Fairies," she muttered. "I've only heard of you in tales."
Shea rolled her eyes. Now that I wasn't bound, I took a closer look. They both had forest green eyes and brown hair. They blended perfectly in with the trees around them. They were obviously twins. Sindri was staring at us in wonder.
"I've always wanted to meet an elf," he blurted and Shea smacked his head.
"Stop it," she snapped. "We have orders."
"What kind of orders?" I asked.
She arched a brow. "Kill whoever crosses our border."
Sindri looked uncomfortable. "Shea, they haven't crossed our border."
"If they come any closer they will," she said darkly.
"Shea," Sindri sighed," relax. Maybe we can help them."
She rounded on him. "Help them? They're elves! They don't need our help!"
"Actually, they do," he said.
Suddenly, water fell from the sky and the she-elves squealed.
"What is it?" Syl cried.
"Rain," Sindri said. "You don't have rain in your realm?"
"We don't even have grey clouds," Rina breathed.
Shea rolled her eyes. "Fine. Follow us and we'll get you somewhere that you can get shelter until it passes."
She stomped off into the forest brush.
"Sorry about my sister," Sindri said, approaching me. "She's... well, she's all about rules and this is breaking pretty much all of them. There is a rule, though, that we are to help any lost creature."
"And they're not lost," Shea said over her shoulder.
"Technicalities," he said, aloof.