The Crossed Pathways to Home

Lucy's world is fading. Sad, alone, her grandmother dying, the rest of the world hating her, what's to look forward to?
But when a mysterious blonde haired boy turns up...

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6. Chapter 6 (lol never names these sorry)

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*warning*

There is mention of self-harm from this chapter forward

I woke up to Aunt Peggy to screaming my name. I was about to go down when I remembered what Finbarr had said.
I quickly rummaged around my room. I found some old white face paint, and put a minuscule amount on to make myself look ill. Then I put water on my hair to make it look as if I'd been sweating.
I walked down the stairs, coughing. Aunt Peggy looked horrified.
"What is this?" she asked dumbfoundedly. I coughed again.
"I'm not very well" I said feebly. "I'm not going to be able to go to school." She sighed like a sulky teenager.
"Fine, but don't expect me to take care of you!" She turned around and flounced out the door.
"Charming!" I said sarcastically.
I went upstairs, got dressed and put a little bit of normal make-up on. I put on my red hoodie and zipped it up.
I sat by the window and anxiously waited for Finbarr to come.
I waited for about an hour, and I eventually saw Finbarr sprinting up to the house. I ran outside.
"Hey" I sighed in relief.
"Hi." His eyes were restless. "You were good when I left?"
"Yeah, no-one came that I know of."
"Look, you might be better off staying away from me and just live your life as before, O.K?" He turned.
"Hey. Hey!" I yelled, grabbing his shoulder, spinning him back around.
"What do you think you're playing at?" I asked angrily.
"Protecting you" he mumbled.
"No you're not! You're leaving me totally vunrable! If you weren't there yesterday, I would've been killed!" I couldn't believe him. What a prat!
"Look, the more you're with me, the more danger I put you in" he said in a hushed tone.
"But you promised to protect me! This is abandoning me! If I'm a so called witness, and this guy doesn't like it, he'll kill me!" He looked down. I frowned.
"Finbarr, I thought you were my friend" I said desperately. I didn't want him to leave me.
He laughed sadly.
"Yeah. I'm your friend." I felt bad. He looked like a nervous wreck.
"Then act like my friend!" I protested in spite of which.
"It's not that simple!" he burst.
"Why?!"
"If he kills you, I wouldn't be able to live with myself!"
"Then help me!"
"I can't!" he frustratedly yelled. "Don't you understand?!"
"No! Of course I don't, you're not telling me anything!"
"I didn't tell you for a damn good reason" he snarled. "Why couldn't you keep your nose out and then you wouldn't be in this mess!"
"What?! Tell me about weird wolves, laws, a creepy friend and a secret and expect me to be totally uncurious? You may not be human, but I am, and curiosity is in my nature!"
"I'm as much as human as you" he seethed.
"Prove it" I growled.
And then he kissed me.
I pushed him away, wanting to make a statement. He looked at me somewhat shocked, confused, upset.
"I'm sorry" he mumbled, going very quiet. "Do you not want me to?" I stared at him, steely eyed, and clenched my jaw. But then I let out a sigh through my nose and let my jaw relax. I grabbed his head and pushed his lips to mine.
His lips were soft and moist and gently guided my own lips. I felt his tongue sneak its way into my mouth, and I met it was my own, our tongues swirling. It felt...right.
We eventually parted and put our foreheads together.
"Human enough for you?" he grinned.
"You twat" I chuckled affectionately.
"I'm sorry I dragged you into this. I really shouldn't of met with you that day. I knew that this would happen."
"I'm glad you did."
"Oh, you won't be!" he laughed.
He moved his hands down to my wrists and I couldn't help but wince.
"You O.K?" he concernedly asked.
"Yeah, I just, um...hate when people touch my wrists."
"Why?"
"I just...do?" Finbarr smiled.
"You do know your eye twitches when you lie, right?"
"What?" I asked, shocked.
"Seriously" he laughed. Oh great. This was something I never wanted anyone to know.
But he sparked a trust in me. I felt I could rely on him.
He looked at me expectantly.
What could I lose? If things went in the way I wanted them to, he'd find out sooner or later.
I sighed, pulled up my sleeve and thrusted my wrist at him.
He took it gently. He looked confused, sympathetic and somewhat interested. He gently turned it.
"Why?" he softly asked. I shrugged.
"Grandma was getting weak. I couldn't live with her anymore. I was put in with my aunt who hates me. I had depression, lost all my friends and started to get bullied. But that was a long time ago" I reassured him. "I stopped self-harming a long time ago. My guidance counciller helped me out a lot. Just some scars now, I guess." But I didn't tell him that I missed cutting my wrists. Only sometimes. It was like an addiction. It's like when a person hasn't smoked in years and finds themselves craving a cigarette when they're stressed.
"Are you still bullied?" he asked after a pause, still intently looking at my wrist.
"Yeah" I gently replied.
"I hate bullying" he said angrily, but softly. "Tell me who and I'll"
"Nothing, I can't handle" I interrupted. He looked up at me. "Honestly" I said.
"Here." He handed my wrist back to me.
"You know" I said, gladly pushing my sleeves back down, "you're the first person I've ever told that to." He raised his eyebrows.
"I appreciate it" he said gently, somewhat proud.
I felt a weight lifted off my chest. Although I stopped self-harming over a year ago, it was a burden to carry around and not tell anyone. I never told Grandma, and I never, ever wanted her to know.
"So what do we do now?" I asked.
"Well...are we um...going out then?" he asked cautiously.
"Sure, why not?" I shrugged playfully.
"Cool! Well," he took hold of my hand. His skin was a little worn, but mostly smooth and soft. We started walking.
"We should probably have you meet the rest of the pack."
"Oh, there's more?" I asked nervously.
"Yeah, a lot more" he grinned. "But we're Irish wolves, we're O.K with humans."
"That's nice to know" I said sarcastically.

We ventured into the forest, into the dense woods.
"Will your Swedish buddies not be lurking here?" I asked him.
"No. That was strange yesterday." He sighed. "Maybe the Wolvien law is going to change."
"Yeah, what is Wolvien law?" I asked in confusion.
"Rules, really. The main one is about witnesses. Irish wolves feel that we should leave people like you alone, unharmed, and let you change to werewolves if necessary. Swedish wolves are afraid witnesses will expose us, so feel its right to kill them. You can understand both sides."
"Woah, hold on. Backtrack. We can change into werewolves?" I asked hopefully.
"Don't get any ideas" he warned. "It's a very unusual and sometimes painful process."
"Were you changed?" I asked. He sighed.
"Yes...I was. But seriously, no ideas!"
I could be a werewolf! I could get away from school and Aunt Peggy and Olivia and her gang. I would, of course, go and still see Grandma. She will always be really important to me.
But how awesome would that be?
"We're here!" Finbarr announced, snapping me out of thought.
"Wow..." It was like a tiny little village. There were lots of houses, but they were all small enough. There were pathways to each one and one house right in the very middle. There were werewolves everywhere, some in human form, some in wolf form.
"It's not much" Finbarr shrugged.
"It's great! It's so cool!" I said excitedly.
"Glad you think so!" he grinned.
I recognised Christophers' worried face as he ran up to us.
"Finbarr! I thought you were going to tell her to stay away, not bring her here!"
"Dude, can you be any ruder, the girl's standing right here!" Finbarr said in exasperation.
"It's better than her getting killed!" he snapped.
"She'll be fine! C'mon Chris, don't scare her."
Christopher glared at me.
"Masons' going to want you then" he said coldly. He walked away.
"What is his problem?" I asked, watching him leave.
"When he was fifteen" Finbarr began, sighing, "he was at the stage of his life where humans cause a great temptation. To eat them like." I looked at him, wide-eyed.
"What?"
"Oh,no, you're fine! It's really when a wolf is on their own, away from the pack. That's what happened to Manix that day. No-one to control him, nothing to keep him calm."
"Oh, O.K" I breathed. No extra people wanted to kill me then. Or, at least, they wouldn't get the chance.
"Anyway, he went out in the forest on his own. He smelled a human, and with no-one to stop him, he killed her." Finbarr grimaced. "One look at her face, and he was heart-broken. She was the most beautiful person he'd ever seen. He hated himself. He just stared at her, glassy eyes in a puddle of blood with his scratch and bite marks, his world falling apart. He realized he ruined her life, her friends and familys' lives. He feels so terrible. He told me himself, he's basically forbidden himself from love. Never had a girlfriend. Won't even look at any of the werewolves. He's worried about you. Doesn't want anything to happen to you. Not that it will."
"Aw, poor guy" I said sympathetically. "Do you think he'll ever get over it?"
"I hope so. He was such a nice, cool person beforehand, apparently. Maybe one day."
Finbarr started to walk, bringing me with him. Some people, wolves...what do I call them for crying out loud?
They stared at me as I walked by.
"Um...Finbarr?" I whispered.
"Mm?"
"Where are we going?"
"We just have to talk to Mason. He's the pack leader, but he's sound."
"What?" I spluttered. "The pack leader?"
"It's fine" he insisted, opening the door. "Mason?" he called. "C'mon!" he coaxed, pulling me in. He closed the door over. "Mason?" he called again.
And there was Mason.
He wasn't old and wrinkled like I had imagined. He was in his late forties. He wasn't particularly tall like many of the other wolves seemed to be. He had hair like mine, a deep chestnut brown.
He had green eyes. The same as other wolves, a strange cat-like pupil with a coloured part behind.
Even though he had a calm aura about him, I still anxiously rubbed my arm, stopping above my wrist.
Mason merely glanced at me, then turned his attention to Finbarr.
"Didn't go to plan?" His voice wasn't extremely low, but it had a husky element towards it.
"No, Mason" Finbarr replied. You could see he had a lot of respect for him.
"No matter" Mason said, brushing off the situation.
I felt my eyes widen. Christophers' rants made me think that Mason would be furious or go off on one.
"Lucy, isn't it?" he asked. I gulped and nodded.
"I always loved that name" he daydreamed. He paused. "Lucy, Finbarr is going to have to protect you for a while. You're most likely going to be in and out of here a lot, so please, do make yourself comfortable."
"Thank you" I said, shocked.
"Thank you, Mason." Finbarr bowed his head.
We walked out. A shiver ran up my spine.
"There's Mason, then" Finbarr announced. I barely nodded.
He led me to a piece of grass outside one of the houses.
"This yours?" I asked.
"Yeah, I share with a few others."
We sat on the dried out grass.
"You have a lot of respect for Mason" I pointed out.
"He...He saved me from a sticky situation" he frowned.
"Which was?" He laughed.
"You ask a lot of questions!" But then he heavily sighed. "My mum died when I was very young. I don't remember her at all. My dad..." he  continued raggedly. "My dad wasn't good news. Hit me sometimes..." He sadly looked down. "Mason came along when I was ten. Pretended he was some long lost relative, adoption and all that. My dad was only too happy to let me go. Changed me into a werewolf then. I owe Mason a lot."
I was speechless. Finbarr came across as care-free and happy. I couldn't of imagined him having such a horrible past.
"Finbarr, I don't know what to say." I rubbed his arms, and my eyes started to well up.
"Sorry, man."
"Hey, don't worry about it!" He regained his crooked grin. He looked into my watery eyes.
"Oh, you do care!" he joked. "Come here, you muppet!" He pulled me into him.
"My mum died when I was little too" I told him quietly. "Childbirth thing, cancer, operation failure...My dad left my mum when she was pregnant. I've never met him."
"Dumbass" he muttered.
I heard footsteps nearby, automatically looked up and froze. It was Manix. Manix looked panicked at me, then at Finbarr, then at me again.
"Oh, it's your buddy!" grinned Finbarr once he noticed Manixs' presence. "Come on over, Manix!" He sighed in embarrassment and jogged over.
"Sorry, about the, um...other day" Manix mumbled, rubbing the back of his head.
"No problem" I said, my voice muted with fright. I felt myself lean even more into Finbarr. Manixs' face crumpled into sadness, his eyebrows bent in what seemed like sorrow.
"What do you want, Finbarr?" Manix nervously asked.
"Oh, nothing. I just love to see you squirm!" he teased.
"Prat!" he spat and practically ran away.
"They'll get used to you eventually" Finbarr laughed.
"Yeah. Eventually" I repeated.

The sun eventually started to set.
"Better get you home" Finbarr said apologetically, resting his head against mine. I despairingly sighed.
"Do I have to?" I moaned, like a child. He patted my arm.
"C'mon, we'll make it fun. Totes amazeballs" he said playfully, crossing his eyes.
"Surprise me!" I laughed.
He jumped up, grabbed my hand and ran, dragging me across the ground.
"O.K, O.K! I'm up, I'm up!" I scrambled onto my feet, but I was still tripping, him pulling me along.
The dude was extremely fast.
We reached the entrance of the forest, and I struggled to regain my breath.
"Now for the fun part" he grinned. He turned around and hoisted me up on his back.
"Finbarr!" I yelped.
"Lets go!" He started to sprint. My hair whipped back, and I had to push my fringe out of my eyes. I couldn't help but laugh. This was such a free, exhilarating feeling.
But, while running through the town, there was Olivia and every last one of her posse.
"Bullies?" Finbarr asked, seeing their disbelieved faces.
"Yep."
"Time to make a stand!" He stumbled to a halt, and spun me around and I giggled and squealed like a little girl. He threw me down and caught hold of my hands.
"Want to rub their faces in it?" he whispered.
"Like you wouldn't believe!"
Olivia and her sheep hadn't moved, paralyzed with shock. I, for one, was only too delighted. I knew that Olivia had never seen anyone as fit as Finbarr.
Finbarr winked.
"Lucy!" he said, loud enough for the girls who were only metres away to hear.
"You are the hottest girl I have ever seen." His eyes flickered up to Olivia, meeting her eyes. He looked back at me.
"Ever."
I couldn't help but grin. Finbarr was officially the best.
Then he kissed me, and the excitement quickly bubbled up inside me. And it wasn't just an ordinary sort of quick kiss. It was a full on, long, French type kiss. He entangled his fingers in my hair as he crushed his lips against mine. I held him close, our swirling tongues causing both the weirdest but pleasurable sensation ever.
After a while, we stopped. Finbarr bit my lip. I warningly raised my eyebrows. He raised his eyebrows, let go and we both smiled.
I quickly glanced over at Olivia, whose jaw was literally on the ground.
"Good enough for you?" he whispered.
"Oh yeah!" I breathed. He kissed my forehead.
"Better go" he added. He slid his hands back down to my hands.
We started to walk back to Aunt Peggys' house, leaving behind us a flock of sheep and their shepherd, eating my dust.
We stopped nearby Aunt Peggys' house.
"It's not really safe for you to be out by yourself, O.K?" Finbarr told me. "One of us'll bring you to and from school, yeah?"
"What about Grandma? I always go to visit her in the afternoons." I don't care if a million terrifying, bloodthirsty werewolves came after me, there was no way I wasn't going to at least try and see Grandma.
Finbarr sighed in thought.
"I can bring you in the afternoons, I guess. Someone else will probably bring you in the mornings. I have stuff to sort, with all...this" he said, flailing his hands. He seemed to think again. Then he looked up, and his mystical, thoughtful eyes met mine, and a shiver ran down my spine.
He shook his head, and back again returned the charming but stupid grin on his face.
"So that was hot earlier" he flirted. My eyes shyly looked down and flickered back up again.
"Weren't too bad yourself" I retorted.
"Why, thank you, m'lady!" he teased.
"I am not your lady!"
"Go on!" he laughed. "See you tomorrow." I paused.
"Thanks for today" I nodded. "It meant a lot."
"No problem."
And I knew he knew what I meant.

 

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