Zahira, a junior in high school, has many problems in her life. Although there not the normal teenage girl problems. Zahira had a secret that only her family knew of, or so she thought. What would society today consider a person who could shift between human, and wolf? A werewolf would fit this classification, but she's a shifter.
~ Everybody wants to save the world, everybody wants to save the world
But no one, no one wants to die. ~
I turned my I-Pod up higher when I heard Jake calling after me, and so I started to walk faster. I absolutely did not want to deal with him at the moment. There was a path to my left that lead into the woods, I quickly turned onto that path, of course trying to dodge Jake. But with my luck Jake kept following me. I got only a few pastes in front of him, when he caught ahold of my right arm. Jake then spun me around so that I was facing him, I could see in his eyes he was angry from me attempting to avoid him. Jake started to say something to me but I could not hear him for I still had my headphones in. And I was okay with not hearing what he had to say to me right now. Jake noticed my headphones and yanked them out of my ears. There was a few seconds of silence in-between us, so much tension, but his eyes remained to show the same emotions as before.
Finally he spoke, "What is your deal Z?” I could hear how hard he was trying not to yell in his voice. I simply remained silent because of this. So, Jake continued talking seeing as I was not going to reply. “Ever since I saw you... Man I don’t even know what to call it, change, shift, help me out here!” Once again I just remained silent, I had nothing to say. And Jake went on, “Never mind that, but you have been avoiding me. Why? I think I deserve that much is to know as to why you are avoiding me.”
And for some reason something inside of me finally snapped, it’s as if I blew up and then I spoke. “Why? So you can treat me like some sort of freak?! So you can be afraid of me now that you know the side of me that no one is suppose to know?! I will not, will not be treated like that again! I refuse to be...” After so I realized I was yelling, unlike he was. It was as though it was all being let out, all the emotions I held in. I was shaking with adrenaline, I wanted to just scream and go wild with anger. Jake stood there in his old beaten up dark blue jeans, red and white plaided shirt with his light yellow graphic tee underneath, and his black converses. He nervously fiddled with his feet, as though pretending to kick something on the ground, I would be guessing trying to figure out what to say next after my explosion. So we stood there for what felt like twenty minutes but in reality it was maybe a minute. In that minute though I got to really observe his details. Jake was not much taller than I was, and I was considered tall for a girl my age, he had deep blue eyes, and dark brown shaggy hair. Jake coughed once and this snapped me back into my body. I continued talking, “With you knowing about this Jake... I don’t have to be careful around you... An... And if I have no reason to be careful, I could hurt you... Like really hurt you. And I don’t think I could live with myself if I knew I hurt someone.” Of all things he could have done, he laughed. "Z, I’m not scared of you. Yes it is a little freaky right now but you have to give me time to adjust.” When he said this it kind of put me into a shock, I mean I never had anyone say this to me. Or for that actually sound like they cared about me, and I knew he meant it because I could hear it in his voice. “Why?... Why aren’t you reacting like the others that have found out the truth about me?” I had to ask, he was a guy with many sides, and many, many surprises. “Well, sadly to say your my best friend. And this may sound corny, but I have your back Z.” This shocked me even more. I never had anyone tell me I was their best friend. I did not live in places long enough to make real friends. “Okay, I don’t know how to really reply to this beside laying down the ground rules.” I said this with a smile. “One. You cannot come to my house for awhile.” Jake looked confused, so I figured I better explain as to why. “You have to let John calm down or he may... kill you.” I said this with a shy smile and shrugged my shoulders slightly. This gave Jake a twist between confused and fear look on his face. I knew what he was going to say next. "Why would John kill me?" And his face told me all but his voice confirmed it. You could hear the fear in his voice but at the same time a little confusion in there at the same time. "Cause John kinda has a sore paw when it comes to these situations. You can blame me for that. Heh." I shrugged as I said the last part of this sentence. Jake seemed okay with everything, and this confused me but I went with it. Again there was a silence as we stood on the path not to far from the street, with the birds chirping and you could hear the wind ruffling the leaves. I soaked all my surrounding in, enjoying ever bit of this. Finally finding someone who seemed to understand me. Jake broke my connection with nature I was having. “Well okay Z. Then these are my rules and I shall follow my masters rules.” He said this with a laugh in his voice. Then he paused, seeming to think for a minute, “You are coming to school tomorrow, right?” I smiled and nodded as I said, “Of course. So... I’ll see you tomorrow?” Satisfied with my answer he smiled and nodded. We stood there for a few more seconds before we parted our ways for the day. Sadly, I knew when I got home I was in trouble for allowing this to happen, again.
I lay there in front of John, whimpering. He was angry, no more like furious with me. He wanted me to fight back but I knew what happened was my fault so I wouldn't fight back. I deserved this punishment, and I accept it. “Fight me!” John growled loudly. I then half heartedly lunged at him, barely snagging him in the back with my teeth. This did not do much to John, he spun around and bit my flank, I yelped in pain, but I have accepted whatever punishment I got. John finally got feed up with me not even trying to fight back and ordered everyone to leave us. I knew what was going to happen next because I’ve been through all this before already. I was going to get another one of his lectures.
John then walked over to me and sat down in front of me. I laid down at his feet, catching a glimpse of his eyes as I got into position. Just from that glimpse, I seen all the pain he was feeling inside. Seeing the pain in his eyes, hurt me on the inside. I didn’t like hurting John like this. He interrupted my thoughts of guilt when he spoke, “I don’t want to have to...” He trailed off, realizing his mistake. “No I can’t move this pack again without reassuring them that it will be the final move.” I zoned out for a minute noticing that he was most talking to himself than to me. “For Josaphines’ sake Zahira... Zahira!” I snapped my head up to look at him, forgetting he was talking to me. “As I was saying for Josaphines’ sake Zahira we cannot move again. You have switched schools every year for the past 4 years! You need to stop becoming friends with the smart ones. Why can’t you just hang out with the dumb humans, the ones that won’t spy on you? Just... Why?!” John growled the last word of his sentence loudly. I knew I had to reply but I also knew he wouldn’t like my answer. “The dumb ones are boring. Their hardly good enough for decent small talk. I’m sorry I have standards”, I replied. John sighed and shook his head at my reply. “You know if you weren’t my sister you would have been out of this pack by now. And this is your last chance Zahira! I cannot keep giving the elders excused for you.If this ends badly, you and the pack will be leaving in different directions. Do you understand me?” I heard all this before but for some reason this time John meant it for real. This was my last chance, no mistakes. John was starring down at me intensely as I lay at his feet. “Yes John. I really am sorry...” I said.
John looked away from me for a moment, that moment seemed like a lifetime. The moon light was shining against his grey fur making it glister in the light. And his eyes were so distance. He finally looked back at me, starring directly into my eyes, “I know your are sorry Zahira, but I’m trusting you with this one. Just this last time Zahira.” I nodded my head at him. John looked off somewhere in the woods, and then he back at me again, “It’s time to hunt. Let’s go.” John stood on all fours and started to walk towards where the pack had wondered off to. I stood and looked up to the moon, John stopped right in his tracks and looked back at me. “Zahira are you coming?” I turned to look at him, “Huh? Oh yea. I was just...” I trailed off my sentence knowing that he didn’t want to hear no more. I followed him off into the deep part of the woods to hunt.
I probably should have thought about putting on jeans and a long sleeve shirt this morning. Especially seeing as I had cut and bruises all along my legs and arms from sparring John last night. But I didn’t think nothing of it when John woke me up telling me I was late. So instead of jeans and a long sleeve shirt, I was wearing a pair of light blue jean shorts that fit me just right, showing off my long slim tan legs, and my favorite white graphic tee, that had just enough material to cover my shoulders. A lot of people on my way to school and in school were starring. And apparently they did not care if I noticed them starring or not. I mean yea I look pretty banged up, I understood this this morning but I was not fully awake. Now that I am more awake, and back in my human form I am more aware that I am more prone to infection. Luckily for me my wounds never lasted long. All these cuts would scar over soon and be forgotten. And the bruises would disappear just around the same time. Even with everyone staring I continued on my way out of the school seeing as most of today went by in a blur. “Z!” I heard over my shoulder. “Z! Ugh. Gezz, will you wait up.” I knew who it was already so I slowed my pace so that Jake could catch up to me. Jake came running up besided me. We walked a couple of steps and I could feel his eyes looking over my wounds. “Z... Can we talk?”, Jake asked. I shrugged my shoulders, not really caring. “What the hell happened to you Z?” I could hear the worry in Jake’s voice, even though he was trying to use a joking tone with me. I knew someone was bound to ask me what happened, this is why I have been preparing an answer for any question possible. But I forgot about Jake knowing I can shift into a wolf. So I told the truth, “Nothing I can’t handle. I won’t be showing up to school like this besides this one time, I hope. Just a one time punishment that ended with a understanding between John and I.” Jake was always asking questions. Most of the time I could predict his next question but I could never see his reactions to such things happening. “What may that understanding be, Z?”, Jake asked. And just as I said before I could see this coming. “Well, if this whole situation doesn’t go over so well, then John won’t be able to protect me from the elders no more. And... I’ll have to leave the pack.” I tried to cover up my sadness in this sentence by acting as though it was nothing. I looked over at Jake, noticing how the light of the sun made his eye pop today. As I was looking at him, I could see that he felt bad. “Is this all because I seen you change?” Jake asked. “Jake its not like that. It’s more because there’s the possibility that you can expose us. And technically it’s called shifting.” I told him. “I don’t get it. Why do you call it shifting, when your changing your form?” So many questions he asks. I mean don’t get me wrong I did not mind him asking. It’s actually nice to talk to someone about this finally that isn’t apart of the pack. I decided I’ll answer all this questions that I can without getting into trouble again. “We call it shifting because the bones have to shift and change position. Some even have to elongate or shorten to change form.”, I said with a smile. “Well... Does it hurt?” I could hear the curiosity in his voice. This made me laugh a little to myself, more than at the question. “It’s different for everyone. It all depends on how you get the curse. I was born into it this so it doesn’t hurt me. But if your not born into it then I heard it’s excruciatingly painful.” I looked at Jake because he had became really quite. I could see he was in deep thought. So I left him be.
We continued to walk out of the school building, and as usual we started to head towards the woods. We made small talk on the way there, but he didn’t know that instead of splitting off our different ways that I had a surprise. I was going to show him my favorite clearing. Finally we came up to the turn for the woods and we started to walk our usual path. But in the middle of our conversation Jake became quite again. This time it wasn’t a good random quietness, it was strange and weird. I started to think of all the possibilities that could be running through his mind. I mean maybe I freaked him out with telling him so much at once, or... or maybe he is scared that John will attack him. I got really worried with him not answering me. It was as though he was zoned out of the world. I stopped walking and just starred at him. Jake kept walking for a couple of steps, but then he realized I stopped. He looked back at me with a confused look on his face. “What are you thinking about?”, I braced myself for any answer possible. Jake’s face lighted up with me asking this. “I was just wondering... Were you born a pup or a baby?” I could hear humor in his voice, but little did he know the truth. Relieved that Jake was not wondering any of my possibilities. “I was born as a pup. Me and John were in the same litter... But me and him were the only ones to survive. And John was more of a leader than I was, so I am the one who has to attend school.” I said with a smile.
Jake walked back to me and stood in front of me. He gently brushed a strand of run away hair I had covering my left eye. As he did this he was looking me deep in my eyes. His touch tingled against my skin, and the look he gave me, oh how I could have stood there forever. This silence between us is becoming a regular thing. Most of the time it was a comfort silence but every now and then it would be awkward. “So... Are all of your kind as beautiful as you?” My eyes opened wide, I did not see this coming at all. I mean just a day ago he told me I was his best friend. Where is this coming from? Then I couldn’t help but frown. “No, actually. I’m the first one since Cleopatra, she was one of us too, and she was the last pretty one until I came along.” I couldn’t help but smile now. “My father once told me that he knew her. And if he wasn’t fighting against her, then he would have fell in love with her.” this made me smirk a bit. “Ironic thing about it all is that he is the one who ended up killing her.” Jake lowered his hand from my face, and looked at me. I mean really looked at me just as we had been talking before he told me I was beautiful. I mean I think he told me I was beautiful, or he could have been just saying that for the heck of it. Jake broke my rambling to myself, “There are only two things about that I have to comment on. One. Your dad is REALLY old. Two. Why do you think that is? The beauty thing I mean?” Jake asked. We then started to walk again only this time I pulled him onto a path that turned off to the left. This made Jake’s face go back to confusion but he kept walking with me, and I continued to talk. “We have a theory that it has to do with my fur. I don’t really know how to explain it.” Jake nodded his head a bit. “So y’all think it has to do with white fur?” he asked. “Yea. So I’m kind of rare, even in my own kind. And honestly, it sucks.” I didn’t have any expression on my face as I said the last part. Jake got a look of wonder on his face again, “Why would it suck? Your amazing.” Jake said this with a smile on his face, and I could tell that he meant it because I could see it in his blue eyes. Which looked so amazing in this lighting. And wait! Did he just complement me again? Is he making moves on me really? Ugh, human males are so confusing. “Well, I can’t always keep my secret a secret. Someone always finds out. We’re always scared we’re going to be tested on by scientist and my father... I don’t even want to get started on him yet. I guess you’ll find out what I mean when he thinks it’s time to meet you. Then I have everyone in the pack expecting me to be some great successful person, and I just don’t want to. I just want to be... Well me. Ya know?” And knowing Jake there was another question awaiting to be answered. “What is everyone in your pack expecting you to do?” And there it was another question. I realized we were close to the clearing so I decided to not answer this question. “Don’t worry about that now.”, I said with a slight smile on my face, as we walk through the opening leading to the clearing. “Well... What do ya think?” Jakes face was speechless. I guess he finally found words because he finally spoke, “It’s gorgeous...” Jake trailed off and looked at me, “just like you.”
We walked over to the middle of the clearing and sat down. We were silent for a moment just taking in the scenery. The grass was soft as the marshmallow shaped clouds above, the sky was a deep blue just like Jake’s eyes, the trees leafs were just starting to change their colors for fall, and the smell in the air. I loved this spot because it was so calm rather than that of the city. And it to me it showed the better side of life, which made the perfect place for thinking. I never intentionally showed someone the places where I found peace for myself, only John knew of these places. John only knew these places because he would intentionally find places such as this to keep a tab on me. And speaking of John. Jake hasn’t noticed yet, but John was standing on the other side of the clearing. I did not have much time to distract Jake because he noticed what I was looking at. Jake turned to me and I could tell he was a little frightened, it was in his eyes he didn’t have to say anything. Jake knew this already though. “Jake... It’s just John. He’s my big brother, and he’s curious about you. I mean he doesn’t understand why you haven’t turned on us yet and spilled the beans of our secret. But he is happy I found someone to keep me occupied.” John was not happy that I was sharing so much information with Jake. I could hear John growl as he walked back into the deep part of the woods. The sad thing is that I haven’t even begun to tell him everything.