By Mikala Laws
My cell phone buzzed once again for what seemed the millionth time that that night. I let it go to voicemail just like every other time and silently wondered when April would understand that I just didn’t feel like talking right now. As a matter of fact I couldn’t see myself talking to anyone for a good while, not even the warm smiles from my mom would snap me out of my dream state. More often than not I couldn’t feel anything, just a deep emptiness that crowded around my heart like a suffocating black hole that sucked up any feelings. Lately it seemed not even the taunting of the wolf inside of me could come close to reaching the surface. There were some nights however, like tonight, where the numbness wore off for a short while and left nothing but an aching pain in its place.
There was a soft knock on my door, and I didn’t even have the energy to tell whoever it was to go away. They would understand... Only whoever they were obviously didn’t get it. With a sigh I turned on my bed to face the door.
“Who is it”, I asked and flinched at the hollow sound in my voice.
Instead of answering a small head poked into the crack of my door. “Gwa-cie?” A small voice whispered, and instantly my heart softened as James became more in view. His large eyes were filled with concern as he watched me from just inside my doorway.
Unable to say no to the adorable little creature I patted a spot on my bed, and he came closer. “Come on in buddy.” I whispered and instantly he ran the length of my room and curled up next to me on the bed. “What’s wrong James?”
At first he didn’t answer he just trembled against me. I rubbed his hair softly and reminisced the days when he was barely old enough to say peas. A small smile curved my lips as I remembered the good ol’ days; when I was completely oblivious to anything that happened outside of my families little world. The smile vanished instantly as the words I feared most slipped off of James lips. “Judy’s gone again.” A tight fist closed its hand around my heart, and I felt my body go cold as I gently lifted James off of my bed.
“James you should go to bed now.” I whispered before taking his hand and leading him to his room. I put him under the covers and tucked him in nice and tight.
“Don’t go Gwa-cie.” He whined softly with tears in his eyes. I smiled sadly at him and instead of answering turned around. I stalked out of his room with tears of my own falling down my face.
~ * ~
The air outside was cool and light when I tightened the laces on my sneakers. I crept around to the back of my house and when I hit the backyard I sprinted towards the forest and vaulted over the protective fence letting the wind whip by me as I stretched muscles that hadn’t been used in quite a while. The last time I found myself running through the woods I was holding the hand of the very person I was out here looking for. I could almost see Daniel running through the forest with the grace of a predator just like the first time. Now it was me running without watching where it was that I placed my feet, because I simply didn’t need to.
I inhaled deeply and allowed my senses to be given over to the wolf that was inside of me. I could smell him everywhere. He patrolled the edges of the woods all the time, but he never came up to the house; like he was afraid what I would think of him. I hadn’t even spoken to him since the day that I was captured by Caleb Kalbi, and not a day went by that didn’t make me miss him furiously.
When I finally entered the clearing the massive white wolf was already there waiting. I looked up into the deep mud pie eyes and gave a smile.
“He ran off again.” I whispered. The wolf nodded once and walked closer; I broke. It dropped next to me and I sobbed into the white coat while Daniel whined and licked my face; the only comfort he could give me now.