Sunday. Oliver hated this day much more than ever lately. His weekend were a lot more to look forward to now, considering Hesper's lessons. The lesson that he had had yesterday was just as eventful as the last, but they didn't stray very far from the topic of Shamanism. He almost wished that they would do something else at this point, though. He didn't want to admit that it was his power animal, but really, it was. A hatred for wolves pumped through his veins, and he had a good reason. It was Hesper that had told him that it was the wolves that took those children, and he trusted her. This meant it was the real truth, despite what other had said. Knowing this only blurred his sight even more when he tried to see the good in the creatures.
The last thing that he saw in his visit to the spirit world was his wolf. It approached him carefully, this time they were on the same side of the river to start with. Oliver was admiring the shimmer of the river when he felt its wet nose brush up into his palm. Like before, he was not scared, but he was not happy. Not happy enough to gaze lovingly down at the animal. Not happy enough to take the form of his wolf. No, the thought disgusted him now. Instead, he just ignored the wolf, secretly wishing that it would go away. When he returned to the waking world, it was almost as if Hesper knew exactly what had happened in his sacred space because she looked at him with sorrow and disappointment.
He tried not to think about that now, but there was nothing else to occupy his mind. This is what he dreaded most about Sunday's now. Having nothing to do. In a small town like this, there was nothing to do, and almost no one to hang out with. Oliver did have a few friends, but he could tell that they had been dodging him for the past few days. Apparently the word was out about him hanging around a 'witch.'
Oliver didn't care, anyway. He didn't need friends like that, too stupid to seek the truth. He had Hesper as a friend now, and what more could you ask for? The wisest and most powerful person in, perhaps, the entire world- Oliver wouldn't doubt it. And what was one of his favourite parts of his visits were the lessons. Although he had only been taught simple shamanism, as he walked alone down the street, he felt his mind to be more powerful, more superior to those around him. But while he enjoyed the faint feeling of wisdom, he sort of wished that others had the desire to learn these mysterious skills as well. That was almost a hopeless thought.
The sky was becoming dark which resulted in the streets becoming brighter from the freshly lit lanterns. These early evening hours were the time that most people wished to do their Halloween shopping. Oliver walked down the most popular road in the town, the streets bricked with the smoothest stone and the buildings lining along the side were the tallest and belonged to the richest. But despite this area being known for the dwelling of the more wealthy, the sidewalks outside were crowded with some of the most poor. These people were the owners of the Halloween booths. Too poor to afford a store, so they turned to the cheaper, portable way to sell their trash. But nevertheless, at this time of year, these booths became very popular to stock up on Halloween items. So popular that any real store owner would be stupid to stock their store with these seasonal things. It wouldn't sell.
Oliver wore one of his warmest, longest jackets. His mother always commented on how smart he looked in it, with his tall, lean body, but that was not why he liked to where it. It was the huge hood on the back that he enjoyed the most. In this dark time of day, pulling the hood up hid his identity. The only way someone would be able to see his face was if they came right up in front of him when he was under the intense light of a lantern. But that wouldn't happen. The way he made mind to walk in the shadows instead of the light and avoid the path of other people, those who glanced his way would only see a shadow.
He glanced out past his hood at a crowd of kids gawking up at a display of masks that were obviously witches. Oliver could tell because of the typical big nose with a wart and the pointy hats. The sight disgusted Oliver. He couldn't imagine how many conversations were brought up in front of those kids at the dinner tables that were discussing Hesper and how she was an evil witch, when the next moment they are dressing up at the monsters they think to be cruel for fun.
It was near the edge of the town that was most darkest and peaceful. This was his favourite place in the little settlement to be. He walked down the middle of the small, quiet street that lead to nothing but the quick ascent to the grass hills, which on the top of the tallest one, lived Hesper. Oliver stood there on the border between the stone and grass and beamed up at the peak of the hill. It being such a clear night, Oliver found that he was able to see every single star that shone. The background behind the fiery glints of light up on the hill that Oliver knew were the windows of Hesper's home, the milky way galaxy streaked across the sky. It was the most brilliant sight.
Oliver watched this for at least twenty minutes until he realized how late it was becoming... The first thing he thought of was that it was time to go home, but that only made him think, did I want to go home? Honestly, the answer was no. He wanted to be anywhere but there. Anywhere besides laying in his damp, dark room, listening to his father snoring loudly from the bedroom just next door. It made him feel isolated, his soul and mind being kept in captivity.
Not caring to think about the consequences, Oliver stepped onto the grass and began to walk. He wasn't going to Hesper, no no, he didn't want to imagine how livid she would be if she found him walking alone at night. Instead, he trailed his path slightly to the right, to the foot hills. He knew that a short walk out this way, he would find the small river, his sacred space. But he did not fancy visiting it in the spirit form. He needed to come in the physical world.
On top of a large boulder jutting out of the ground was where he sat, listening to the flow of water next to him. It was quite dark. The only exception was the moon that appeared nearly full, and not only that but the stars shone nicely as well away from the bright lights of the city. Oliver admired their shimmering, warped reflection on the rushing water. Never before had he had the privilege to see this place like this. But the burning stare of eyes on the side of his head was impossible to not notice.
Oliver lifted his gaze from the river and looked straight ahead, just below his hood. Someone was standing there. Alarmed at the definite presence of another person, Oliver sat up straighter as his view focused better on the girl. She stood on the opposite side of the river, the tallest strands of grass reaching up to her hips. The flowing black dress that she wore, matching her beady black eyes, almost made her blend into the night. But her bright, blond hair was hard to miss. It draped down her back in long waves, but one shorter strand hung stubbornly next to her plump, red lips that were fixed into a toothless smile. Oliver had to admit, this young lady was beautiful.
They both just looked at each other for a moment, his gray eyes clashing with her dark ones. No matter how hard he studied her features, he couldn't recall seeing her around town. He would have remembered seeing her in the halls of his school, since she looked no older than eighteen.
"Can I help you?" Oliver suddenly asked. Her grin grew even more as her lips parted.
"You," She spoke in a strange accent that he could only guess was french, "You are the one that is around the witch," She stated. Oliver was immediately annoyed and his respect for her dropped.
"She's no witch," He almost growled.
"Is that what she told you?" The girl countered. Oliver could already see where this was going and he really didn't feel like dealing with it.
"Is there something I can help you with?" He asked again, faking politeness. Her grin turned sly, this made Oliver a little uneasy.
"We dislike witch's," She said.
"And you seem to be drawn to this witch." Oliver did not reply but rolled his eyes behind his hood. "Tell me, my dear boy, is she teaching you to be just like her?"
Again, Oliver did not answer. Instead he just glared at her from underneath his hood as she took a few stalking steps near the rivers edge. The second her toes touch that water, he told himself, I pull my knife.
"Are you inheriting her skills?" The girl pressed on. "Are you learning to be a witch... Just like her?" She snarled with the most evil grin. Oliver wanted to strangle her, but remained on his rock, gripping the knife in his pocket, ready.
"Who are you?" Oliver barked. Her evil smile only broadened.
"My dear boy..." She began, "We are the worst enemy to your magic." There was a pause where the two of them just stared each other down. But as Oliver watched her fierce eyes, he saw them twitch, to look behind him. Without hesitating,Oliver pulled his hood away with one hand while he retrieved his knife with the other. With his vision wider, he turned to face whatever it was that he knew was behind him.
He nearly slipped off the rock in shock. There, in the tall grass behind him was a huge, black wolf. Without warning, it pounced. Sailing through the air, it widened its jaw and splayed its claws, aiming right for Oliver. He shouted in alarm as he raised his knife in his last defense.
But something miraculous happened. Just as the huge wolf was about to land atop him, to deliver what could only be certain death, it fell to the side. It fell into the grass with a loud cry. Oliver looked to see an arrow jammed right through its shoulder.
Quickly, the whines turned to growls more fierce than before. That single arrow wasn't going to take down a huge wolf like this. Oliver was desperate to know who had sent the arrow, but did not need to look around to see for himself.
"Get her!" He heard the blond haired girl screech. "Get the witch first!" It was Hesper! Oliver realized. But his joy and relief quickly turned to alarm when he saw the black wolf round and turn on Hesper. She stood way off in the tall grass, wearing a long, black cloak that concealed her face with shadows. In her hands, she held her bow horizontal to the ground, loading back another arrow. Everything went in slow motion as he watch the wolf lunge once again through the air, this time at Hesper. His heart skipped a beat as he prayed to god that the arrow she pointed up at the wolf would hit.
The most horrible, strangled cry rattled the night. The splatter of blood glistened under the night sky as it flung in every direction. The black wolf fell to the ground right before Hesper with a groan, an arrow pierced right through its throat. Carefully taking one more arrow from her quiver, she shot it right through the animals skull, killing it instantly to put it out of its misery.
But Hesper's mercy did not last long. Oliver saw her hooded head dart up and look in his direction. But she was not looking at him, but the girl on the other side of the river.
Noelani zoomed right by Oliver through the grass, making a magnificent leap across the river as he charged at the girl with a snarl. Hesper had loaded another arrow at the now shocked looking girl, but she snapped out of it instantly when she noticed how seriously out numbered she was.
Oliver watched in utter disbelief as the girl turned to a blond furred wolf in the blink of an eye. She ran off away from the river through the grass, several arrows following her, but none connected.
Oliver just remained in the dirt where he had collapsed and stared at where the girl had disappeared, dumbfounded. He felt a hand touch his shoulder and he knew that it was Hesper's. She was not angry, or at least not at the moment. Right now she was just comforting him the only way she knew how as he sorted out what he had just saw.
Soon Noelani appeared back on the other side of the river and leaped across the flow, not as gracefully as last time, his hind legs and bush tail falling into what must had been icy cold water.
"Werewolves?" Oliver asked quietly. Hesper nodded.
"Werewolves," She confirmed.