Vikki awoke and blinked the fuzziness from her eyes. They were completely healed. She could easily make out the small print at the bottom of the posters across the room, even in the dark. Excellent night vision was one of her better traits.
Rolling up to sit on the edge of the bed, she located her jeans and flannel shirt. Now cleaned and mended, thanks to Ma. She dressed silently and drank the full glass of water from the bedside table. Vikki stood up too fast and became dizzy for a moment but it passed quickly. Leaving without saying goodbye didn’t sit well with Vikki but she didn’t feel like she had a choice. The bits and pieces of the conversation she had overheard was enough to let her know that the Harold was on her trail and she needed to scoot. Her boots were nowhere to be found, “Where are my damn boots?” she whispered to herself as she searched under the bed.
“Right here.” Ma said, and flipped the light on. “Did you hear us talking about the cabin or were you just figuring on skedaddling without a word?” She tossed the boots on the bed.
Vikki’s eyes went wide and she ducked her chin in shame, “I was going to leave a note.” She stood in front of Ma with tears brimming, “I can’t endanger your town and you’ve already done so much for me.” Ma hugged her and stroked her hair. “You’re welcome honey.”
“What was that about a cabin?” Vikki asked as she wiped her tears away.
“We’ve made arrangements for you to go deep in the mountains where no one would find you. Just until Theo can sort your problem out. You’ll be safe with Seth.”
“Seth? If you told me where it was I could just go myself and he wouldn’t..”
Ma cut her off, “Seth is going to keep you safe, I don’t think your entirely well and your going to need him. So that’s all there is about that.”
Vikki nodded, and put on her boots. Ma handed her a down jacket, “here put this on, it was Seth’s when he was ten. I’m hoping it fits.”
Wildlings all carried their own particular scent, and she recognized Seth’s immediately when she put on the fluffy jacket. Ma’s was like warm pine and his was similar, but with a smokey sandalwood intertwined. “It’s perfect. Thank you, Ma.”
They hugged once more, then met Theo in the kitchen. He gulped down coffee and explained that he was going to shift and carry her on his back to where Seth was waiting. They didn’t want to chance someone tracking her scent.
With the back porch lights off, the women said their goodbyes, and Theo began his shift. As was polite, Vikki closed her eyes until he was finished undressing and fully changed. Because of his age and alpha status, he was able to do it in seconds, effortlessly. Vikki envied his speed, her shifts took a few minutes at least and they hurt like an all over body cramp. She climbed on Theo and waved bye to Ma.
Her weight was nothing for Theo to carry, he sprinted through the dark woods without a sound or a misstep. Vikki was impressed. She clung tight to his back and watched for anyone who might be following. Other than the occasional raccoon and possum, she didn’t see a soul. Hearing the trickle of running water, she knew that they were close to the meeting point.
“Eee” she squealed, when Seth jumped from an oak tree and landing in front of them. Vikki had felt Theo’s whole body tense, and she tried to giggle quietly. Theo growled, “Seth, don’t do that. This is important, not the time to be messing around.”
Seth gave a cocky grin, “I wasn’t messing around, I just got out of the tree to meet y’all, not my fault your jumpier than a squirrel straddlin’ an electric fence.” He laughed a little at his own joke and patted the fur on his dad’s shoulder. Vikki watched Seth with curiosity. He was large, probably standing at six-foot fiveish, with muscles that any body builder would kill for. But his face..his face was so pretty. He was the spitting image of Ma. Large almond-shaped eyes, dark hair, and his mom’s cute, tipped up nose. No wonder she spoiled him, Vikki thought.
Theo let out a long sigh, “Just get shifted so I can hand her off to you. Remember, she’s not to touch the ground until you reach the mountain, we can’t have the trackers lead to you. Vikki waited on Theo’s back with her eyes closed until Seth said, “All done.” It took him one minute and he also shifted silently.
She waited for Seth to turn his back, so that she could climb over onto it. Instead, he reached out and plucked her off his father’s back and cradled her like a baby against his chest. “I’ve got the backpack to carry. This way you can sleep while we travel and I don’t have to worry about you falling off. You don’t weigh much anyhow.” Vikki relaxed once he explained and said “Okay.”
Theo gave his son a run down of what should and shouldn’t be done. Vikki blushed horribly when he glared and told Seth to make sure and keep his hands to himself. Other than that, the rules where pretty common sense. “No talking to anyone, avoid everyone. Don’t put Vikki down. Make sure no one realizes you’re in the cabin. No fires at night and only small fires in the day”. Seth interrupted, “Were going to be here till morning if you keep this up.”
“Alright bye, just be safe. We will come and get you when we figure out what’s going on.” Theo turned to go, but turned back when he thought of something, “I’ll get someone out here with more supplies if it takes more than a month.” Then he ran back towards home.
“A month!” Vikki and Seth said in unison.
More to come……….