Inheritance Book 1: Randolf (Chapter 5 Released)

Ember Fullbuster is your average fifteen year old girl. It’s the first day of school and a strange boy appears at her front door, saying that she is a werewolf and will have her first shift this full moon. During their conversation, she discovers that he is a werewolf himself. Ember brushes him off, thinking that he is just pranking her, she goes to school as normal, but the day of the full moon, she begins seeing strange things. Her head pounds and she gets a high fever. Her vision fades into a red glow. She gets sent home from school. But when the full moon rises, her life will never be the same again.

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4. From Ash to Ash

CHAPTER 4: FROM ASH TO ASH

 

The dark faded away. She could hear people yelling. Sirens pierced her ears as they adjusted back to reality. “There’s a girl in there. Ember, the daughter. Her parents are nowhere to be seen.” She could hear a voice say. “Don’t worry sir, we’ll get her out.” She could hear a deeper voice say. “The daughter is inside, Davis, Joaquin, get her out! The rest of you, help me put out this fire!” She heard feet shuffling and wood snapping. “Donavin, the floor is too unstable! We can’t reach her!” She heard another voice say. The strange thing was, she wasn’t hurt. Her ears stopped throbbing, and her lungs didn’t even ache from the smoke. She could just get up and walk out if she wasn’t so exhausted from the fight. A light bulb went off in her head. “Hey Fulki, what if we heal the wood on the floor, like we did with the tree? Then they may be able to walk on it.” She could feel he wolf’s disapproval.

“You’re already exhausted from releasing so much magical energy before, if you do it again, you may go unconscious.”

“It’s fine, we have to calm down all these people.”

“Fine, but you’re helping me.”

“Okay.” Together, they reached for their fire. They focused on the ash and wood. They imagined it healthy and strong. They felt their energy drop. They opened their eyes one last time to see the orange and yellow streaks flowing through the ground before they returned to the realm of shadows.

 

    Loud sirens pushed her awake in the same way an alarm clock would. She was in an ambulance; to her left, there was a man holding an oxygen tank to her face. She sat up fast, using her werewolf strength to overpower the man holding her down. “I don’t need that.” She said, removing the oxygen mask.

“Maybe, but we don’t know how much smoke you inhaled. It is better to be safe than sorry.” The man said.

“No, you don’t get it. Aren’t you even the slightest bit curious why I’m not burned. The fire didn’t go around me ya know.” She could feel Fulki wake up. “Hey, glad you’re awake.” She told her wolf.

“Me too, when did you wake up.” Fulki said.

“When they turned on the sirens.”

“Fair enough.”

“Am I missing something.” The man said.

“What do you mean?” She asked.

“We were in the middle of a conversation and you just went silent. Its almost felt like you were talking to yourself.” He said, “And I don’t know why you aren’t burned, you were probably just extremely lucky, but I still have to be cautious.” The man gave her an “I’m sorry” look.

“I’m fine, I can start yodeling if you want.” The tips of her mouth pinned up into a smirk.

“What no-” It was too late.

“Yodele yodele yodele he yodele he -”

“Okay, Okay, I get it.” He said laughing, “But I still have to bring you in, just to make sure.”

She nodded and laid back down, knowing this was the most freedom he was going to give her. The rest of the ride included both silence and light conversation. The ambulance soon pulled into a narrow driveway. She could hear rushed voiced on the other side of the door. “You should probably lay down and pretend to be hurt. It will delay the questions.” The man said. Ember nodded. She knew he was right. She laid down on the small “bed” and closed her eyes. She didn’t realize how tired she was. Even before the doors of her ambulance were opened, she had already passed into a deep sleep, moving farther and farther away from the long, traumatizing night. She had no parents. She had no house. She had an enemy. She will probably lose Raef completely after the house incident. But she did have someone. Someone who was only just recently introduced into her life, but someone who will stand by her side forever. She had Fulki.

 

    She woke again to the soft moonlight shining in from her window. She was in a hospital room. In front of here was a wall of windows covered by closed curtains; the windows only showing themselves at the edges and bottom. A fairly normal wood door was the only natural way in and out of her room. It had a narrow window at the top. To her left was a small window, when she looked out it, she could see the waning moon. Fulki was still sound asleep inside her body. “Glad you’re awake. It’s around midnight. We were taking shifts watching you, see when you woke up. You’re lucky it was me. My name is Joash. I am a friend. I am also a werewolf with powers, although mine aren’t near as strong as yours, Little Lite.” He smiled warmly.

She stared at him, stunned. “Hi.” She said as she coaxed Fulki awake, the last wolf mage she saw took her parents, so she stayed on guard.

“It’s okay Ember, I mean you no harm. I am currently the alpha of the Crescent Eclipse pack. Your pack. When you get old enough, I will gladly hand over leadership to you.”

She nodded,”You said you had powers, what element do you control?”

“Water.” He said simply, “But I am not that good at it, I am only a half breed mage wolf. I am your uncle, Ember. My mom was a normal werewolf, while my dad was your grandpa.”

“You’re my uncle?” She said in surprise.

“Yes.”

The door suddenly opened and their conversation ceased as a human nurse entered the room.

“Dr. Salvatore, I think it’s best we let her rest. She’s been through a lot and it’s late.” The nurse looked at Joash pleadingly before turning back out the way she came.

“I better go, but if you need anything, don’t hesitate to call.” He nodded a quick goodbye as he fled the room. Leaving her alone with only her thoughts.

“We found our alpha.” Fulki said.

True, but the nurse is right, we really do need some sleep.” Fulki virtually nodded, and the two fell back into their deep, healing sleep.

 

This time she woke up to the gentile beep of a machine. A nurse was next to her. Pain enveloped in the inside of her left elbow. “Ouch” said winced. The nurse turned and left. Looking down, she found the source of her pain. The nurse had stabbed her with an IV. Looking up from the rude awakening, she saw the room was different than the night before. There was light. Instead of the moon, the sun was shining through her window, illuminating the depressing enclosure. The door creaked open again, “Mornin, love.” Joash poked his head through the cracked door.

“You should be free to go whenever you’re ready.” He said as he painfully removed the IV.

“My parents . . .” She mumbled. Joash lowered his head, placing his hands overtop her own, “I know.” He said solemnly.

“We have to find them, Joash.”

“Already on it, as soon as they were taken, Caleb and Luna started tracking them.” He said as he walked toward the door. “They are the best trackers in the pack. If anyone can find them, Caleb and Luna can.”

Ember nodded as she walked out with Josh, “Since you came in an ambulance, no one changed your clothes into a hospital gown. This way.” Joash clapped cheerfully as he led her down the corridors.

 

Little conversation hung in the air between them. She could feel herself falling apart. She felt like her body was made of glass, shattered glass, and it’s taking all her energy to stay together. But soon, her energy will run out. She will shatter, glass falling to the ground with a soft jingle. Shards of her soul already beginning to shed. “Come on, Em. Pull it together. We won’t get them back by freaking out and crying.” Despite Fulki’s words, she could feel a strong wave of sadness that had washed over her wolf some time ago. The spirit may not have known her parents for long, but they were a member of her pack, and now the ache of them being torn away gnawed at their insides, tearing them apart.

“As sad as it may be, Fulki’s right.” Joash said as he turned onto a dirt road.

“How?” She asked.

“I’m the alpha, I can hear the conversations between wolves and humans in our pack.”

“Oh.” She said as she turned her head back to the window. The urge to shift and run away become almost irresistible inside her.

“You know, Ember, Ash is here. You can ask him to run with you if you want.”

“Huh?” She turned back to meet his eyes.

“A run will make you feel better, or at least it will help.” Joash said as he turned into a long driveway. Ember nodded as Joash parked the car and got out. They stopped at the entrance to a large forest.

“We’ll walk from here.” Joash said as he set off into the trees. Ember followed. Each step made her ache to be four legged more intense than the one before. By the time the treeline broke and a small cluster of huts emerged, she could barely stand.

“Ash!” Joash called. Her new friend turned and smiled.

“Hey Em, what’s up- wow, I’m so sorry, if you want to talk or run or anything, I’m here.” he walked up to her and wrapped in her a comforting hug.

“I shared our memories of the last few days with him.” Fulki said.

“You can do that?” Ember asked. Fulki didn’t say anything, but she could feel a silent nod come from her wolf. Ash was still looking at her patiently.

“Joash said a run would help me feel better.” She told him.

“Then a run it is.” he barely finished talking by the time he had stripped all his clothing. His skin seemed to move up and down in waves as his bones snapped into place and fur grew over his bare figure. After a painful few minutes, Ash was a wolf. He was a blackish grey wolf with intense blood red eyes. “Him and Conan, obviously don’t work too well together.” Fulki said.

“Is Conan his wolf’s name?” Another silent not answered her question.

“You don’t need to strip, since you don’t fight me during the shift, we’ll have enough energy to keep your clothes from shredding. They’ll disappear, then reappear. Who knows where they go.” Just as Fulki finished, she washed her consciousness overtop Ember’s surrounding it. Ember’s mind subsided, letting her wolf take full control. A few seconds later she was being pushed up by her wolf and back into her third person perspective of the world.

“How?” Ash asked through the mind link, “You shouldn’t even be able to do that, much less quickly and smoothly.’

“Fulki and I get along well.” Was her only explanation before they darted off into the treeline, feeling free for the first time in forever. Scents wafted in through their nose. Fallen leaves and dry twigs crunched beneath their paws. A slight breeze wisped through their fur. Trees flew by as the echo of paws filled the quiet air. The wall of greenery broke and a small clearing emerged. The clearing led to a cliff overlooking a large valley below.  They stopped at the edge of the cliff, looked down into the valley, and felt the true freedom she had always longed for. The wind blew through their fur and she was sure small embers were appearing around her body. They heard the sound of bones snapping and a muffled cry. “Beautiful, isn’t it” Ash’s human voice was barely audible over the sound of her own mind. She felt something reach out to Fulki, she felt her approval, her wolf subsided, giving Ember the cue to shift back. Once she was two legged again, she turned to see her friend, forgetting about his inability to keep his clothes.

“Right, you don’t have clothes.” She said, resisting the urge to drop her eyes.

“Nope.” He said, meeting her gaze. A long moment of silence passed. “How do you do it?” He asked.

“Do what?”

“Keep your gaze level with my eyes.” He replied.

“Trust me, I want to drop it.” Her response gave birth to a growing smirk on his face.

“Then do it.” He said, smirk still growing.

“I’m good.” But even as she said it, her gaze dropped to his lips. She closed her eyes to prevent him from seeing them fall further. They flew open again when she felt a hand on her cheek and Ash’s warm breath blowing softly against her skin, sending prickles up and down her spine. Another arm wrapped around her waist and pulling her close. Nearly every part of their bodies were touching. “Are you okay?” He asked, his breath tickling her nose.

“I’m better, the run really helped.” She said as she relaxed into the scent of burning wood. His scent.

“Is that it?” There was a slight tease in his voice.

“Haha.” She chuckled softly, resting her head on his bare chest. Tears fell silently from her soul and they dripped down Ash’s naked body.

“Dang.” He said, “Even your tears are filled with fire.”

“What?” She looked up at him. His piecing blood red eyes now seemed warm and friendly, inviting her to come closer. But something was holding her back“Go for it, he isn’t Raef. He knows about your powers and knows who you are. You don’t have to fear him or his reaction.” Fulki fell silent again, watching from the sidelines, but cheering on her human when she needed it. Ember closed her eyes, gathering her courage, but before she could make her move, soft lips collided with her own. Warmth seeped through her body, but just as quickly faded. She opened her eyes to see Ash staring deeply into them, looking from something. She didn’t care through; she was cold now and longed for the warmth that had once consumed her. Being the perfectly rational teenage girl she was, she lifted one arm from his chest, laced her fingers through his hair, and pulled his head back down to meet her lips. Warmth filling her again. Ash smiled against her lips. Lips brushed against each other in a furry. He entanged his tongue in hers, but she needed to breathe. As if he read her thoughts, he dropped his kiss from her lips to her jaw. Kissing her up her jawline to her ear. He nibbled on her ear. She let out a soft moan. He smiled again, dropping his mouth down her neck, leaving a trail with his tongue. She softly moaned again. He kissed her collarbone, moving her shirt, desperately trying to get more of her, but not daring take it off. Finally, he gave up on his attempt and traced kisses back up her neck again. He stopped about halfway up to tease the tender skin with his tongue before gently biting into it.

“Uhhhhhh.” This time, her moan was very adioable. It sent Ash into a frenzy for a split second before he backed away. She was cold again, but she didn’t care, she wasn’t about to push Ash into something he didn’t want.

“I...I’m sorry.” He said, still breathing hard.

“It’s okay,” She said. “I liked kissing you.” He perked up.

“You did?” He asked unsure of himself, “What about Raef?”

“What about him?” She asked, remembering how he abandoned her.

“He kissed you too-”

“Actually, I kissed him, and I regret it.” Just as she finished, a howl echoed through the wind.

“They’re calling us back, we should probably go.” Ash said as he painfully shifted back into his wolf.

“Fulki?” Ember asked.

“I’m here.” She said as he took the helm. They shifted with ease. Fulki tilted her head back and let her song free to tell Joash they were coming.

“Come on.” she told Ash as she galloped gleefully back to the cluster of tents. Ash and Ember quickly shifted back. Joash ran out to greet them, two wolves followed at his heels. “Welcome back, guys. Ember, I want you to meet Caleb and Luna.” Joash gestured to the wolves next to him. They both faded into humans. Caleb was tall, athletic, had blonde hair and silver eyes. He also had a golden brown tan. Luna was only slightly smaller than Joash, she had dark skin, white hair, and blue eyes. She smiled warmly at Ember before pulling her into a hug. “I am so sorry about what happened, but we have their trail, we know where to find them.” Luna said as she let go.

“Yea, we have wolves ready to go, the two of you are welcome to come with us if you like. It’s always nice to have some extra wolf power.” Caleb offered. She looked to Joash for any disapproval.

“I may be titled as alpha, but we all know who the real alpha is. You can make your own decisions.” He said as he shifted into a rainbow looking wolf. His legs, underbelly, undertail, and ears were all cream. His shoulders, ribs, and the side of his tail were tan. His back and top of tail were brown. His head was all brown except for a patch of white around his mouth. He had steel blue eyes. “Coming or not?” He asked.

“You up for a little investigating?” She asked Fulki.

“Hell yea!” Fulki said she she swiftly took the helm. Caleb, Luna, and Ash all shifted. Ash’s shift was painful, but getting faster. Caleb shifted into an all blonde wolf with intense moon silver eyes. Luna shifted into what looked like a zebra printed wolf. She was white with dark brown stripes forging patterns on her body. She had ocean blue eyes. “Lead the way.” Ash said. Caleb and Luna nodded as they trotted down to the place where the pack was gathered. Ember recognized Jacobs in the group, but no one else. Joash spoke,“Everyone, I would like to introduce, Ember. Daughter of Hera and Rezso. We are out looking for her adoptive parents, Steph and Jayden. Steph and Jayden raised her and I don’t want anyone backing out or having a sour mood because they are not her real parents, she considers them so. Does everyone understand.?” The assembly of wolves nodded, “Ember, is there anything you want to say?” Fulki nodded, “Is it alright if I talk?” Fulki asked both Ember and Joash. Gaining approval from both. She stepped up “My name is Fulki, I am Ember’s wolf. Now I know we haven’t been together long, but I deeply care about Ember and her family, meaning I am just as depressed about losing our parents as Ember is. But I did not come here to cry, I came her to find them and bring them home. Now, WHO’S WITH ME?!” Fulki yelled through the mildlink. The crowd of wolves raised their noses and howled together. Ember smiled, knowing this was her wolf, and how lucky she was to have her. She could feel Fulki’s pride as the trotted down to the front of the pack, head held high. With one last howl, they galloped of into the forest, looking for the people they’ve lost. But what they end up finding, changes everything.

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