Craaven

After getting kicked out of his home, eleven year old Edgar Craaven, is transformed into a raven by a crazed nature alchemist and is forced to survive with the help of his friend William Tuck. But after an almost deadly plane crash, Edgar finds himself thrown into a land that seemingly doesn't even exist. Now he's forced to survive in a strange world while at the same time falling head over heels for a beautiful young girl. However when she is murdered, Edgar begins to struggle to keep his sanity together.

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8. Chapter 7: Somewhere in the skies of England, 1977

 It was nearing sunset, and I've almost given up hope for finding Will. I've searched what seemed like everywhere, and I've encountered many ravens that seemed like Will but were really just angry birds fighting for food and females.

    I was about ready to decide where to make a nest and try to figure things out on my own without Will... but the thought of dying because I did something absolutely stupid kept me flying on for several more minutes, until suddenly...

   "Edgar!!" a voice called behind me. I turned my head and, to my relief, saw a familiar large raven rushing towards me. I cawed out in joy, "William!"

   The raven circled above me for a few seconds before slowing down and proceeding with a steady cruise next to me.

  "Is this a bloody miracle or a coincidence?" William asked me, his eyes filled with surprise, and his beak opened slightly in what was presumably confusion or awe.

   "I'm not sure...but I sure feel lucky I found you again. I was about ready to give up." I admitted.

    "It's a good thing ya didn't then...listen...I'm sorry I didn't try to continue pursuing 'Awky when he captured ya...'e was just too fast, and I'm not as young and swift as I used to be." Will explained sincerely.

    "It's alright, in fact..." I paused for a brief second, wondering if I should tell him about what happened between Hawky and me. "...he died while trying to kill me..." I lied, but still told the truth at the same time.

    "The 'awk is dead?" William asked in disbelief. I nodded and Will looked off to the horizon with a shocked look in his eyes; it was pretty obvious that this news was utterly unbelievable to him... I only hoped he didn't ask how Hawky died because I would either have to tell the truth and watch Will fly away from me because I'm now a murderer or lie and I'm horrible at lying.

"This is sudden," Will chuckled halfheartedly, and to my dismay followed up with, "'ow did it 'appen?"

I gulped and took a short moment to think. I was silently freaking out about what I would say but I did my best to hide it and eventually answered with, "He accidentally bumped into a wall of rocks and a stone fell onto his head."

It was the best I could come up with and, frankly, I was pretty damn proud of it because William believed me.

"Well tha's a stroke o' luck if I ever 'eard one!" he exclaimed. I agreed with a forced chuckle but deep down inside, I only felt my guilt grow more. I needed to get my mind on something else... anything else.  

  "William!" I called. 

"What is it?" he asked.

     "What was this place you were telling me about? Before Hawky snatched me?" I wondered, remembering that moment. William cooed approvingly and closed his eyes as if remembering something pleasant.

    "Right! The buffet! I'm 'ungry as well, smart thinkin', boy." He announced. "Follow me, its this way." he continued, flying off to his right, I followed, although I lingered behind slightly, still hearing the faint screams of Hawky in the back of my mind. I was hoping food could get my mind off of this but I knew it was only temporary. I'll never get over this. I thought to myself. 

...

   We arrived at an all-you-can-eat buffet around nightfall. I sat on a windowsill, eagerly peering in whilst William awaited me below for information on what I saw inside.

   "The tables are unguarded. There's a few people getting food but other than that, it's clear." I said down to Will. Will cawed in approval as I jumped down to the floor.

    "Now all that needs to be done is to get inside and feast." Will stated happily, mentally savoring the tastes of the many foods inside. I cooed in agreement; I was extremely hungry, I haven't eaten a real meal in several days. I realize I've been living like a real bird, relying on hand-caught rodents and the scraps of garbage to keep me alive. My stomach felt like a homeless child.

    I suddenly frowned. My stomach felt like a homeless child mostly because I was a homeless child...trapped inside a raven's body.

   "Edgar? You look troubled...is something the matter?" William suddenly asked, his head cocked in my direction and his voice knocking me out of my thoughts. I looked at him and tapped my beak, "No-no. Nothing's wrong. I just can't wait to taste that food." I lied, faking an enthusiastic tone.

    "Okay...well than in that case, once someone opens the door we'll quickly rush in." William explained, hopping up and down to ready himself for the sprint inside. I trotted to his side, however I decided I wouldn't look like a fool and simply stood there.

     Several minutes went by, and Will had finally stopped hopping with anticipation. He had exhausted himself and was now lazily staring at the door on his back. I on the other hand was still standing and tiredly looking at the door, waiting for any sign of movement.

    "Busy place isn't it?" William said sarcastically. I scoffed, "Indeed, people from around the world are coming to see London's busiest buffet." 

Will laughed and rolled onto his talons, "Are you sure you even saw people in there?" he asked, questioning my eyesight.

     "Of course I did! There were several people in there; and waiters as well."

     But just as we were about to argue about what I saw inside, the door suddenly opened, and a family of five came noisily piling out. The parents were happily talking with each other, while their rambunctious children giddily pushed each other around.

    "Ooh! Big Bwack Birdie!" One of the youngsters called. I quickly looked around for another bird, but, realizing William had already gone inside, I assumed the child was pointing me out.

   "Edgar! Goddamn it get yer arse inside!" Will yelled from the door way. The door was beginning to shut, so I quickly scrambled inside and ducked under a table where William resided.

   I followed Will as he stealthily maneuvered around the people's feet towards the food tables. Twice were we almost caught because of, according to Will, "My absurd clumsiness." But fortunately, we weren't caught, and we made it to the food tables peacefully. Now only the hard part remains...the final level.

   "So how's this going to work?" I asked in a whisper. William scooted closer, "When no one is looking, quickly go up on the table and grab the firs' thing yer beak touches and quickly come back down."

    "And what if we're caught?"

    "It immediately becomes an every-bird-for-'imself scenario."

    I gave William a strange look, "So if we're caught we automatically leave each other to die?"

    "Oi, its 'ow every bird survives." William answered, attempting to shrug his wings. I continued to look strangely at him, I wasn't completely settled with the possibility that William will abandon me to be tortured by humans (figuratively). Plus, it's still absolutely fantastic to know that he doesn't care!

   Will eventually sighed and gave a look of defeat, "Fine...just forget it. If we get caught I'll try to 'elp you...Now 'urry up yer chance is coming!" he said, defeated. My face still lingered, but I was a little bit more settled than before, so I walked to the edge where the table starts.

   William watched me from behind, I assumed he wanted to see how I did, and wanted to teach me if I was almost caught or took to long. I looked around the restaurant for any eyes who might be watching, I didn't see any, so as quickly as I could, I flew up onto the table without thinking and grabbed a convenient fried fish stick.

   I quickly came back down with the fish stick in my beak and by the look on Will's face, I could tell he was pleased. We split the fish in half and ate it, before I watched William move onto a second table and grab a few morsels.

   "That was pretty good." I complimented him as he came back with two strawberries in his beak. Will set them down, "I'm not as agile as I was in my earlier years...but I can still get the job done like a thief."

   I chuckled before downing one of the strawberries.

   "I think it's safe to say we can move onto our own tables." William suggested, puffing his chest with confidence. I agreed, and we both scurried off in opposite directions.

     I'm not really sure what Will had done whilst I was in the Italian section grabbing a large slice of pizza, so I can't exactly describe what he did. But when I came back, he surprised me by plopping two large slices of ham and turkey at my talons.

      "How in the bloody hell did you do that?" I asked in awe, shaming my pizza slice. Will looked at me with a boasting stare, "I was quiet and quick...that's 'ow I did it."-was all he said. We both shared the meat and the pizza, and when our meals were finished, we took another risk by going out again for more food.

      I was at the salad bar now, and Will was now the one in the Italian section. I was just about ready to grab a carrot when suddenly...

     "Hey!! Get those filthy birds out of here!" a voice yelled, startling both of us. I was the one who looked up first, William didn't even hesitate to fly off. I saw a waiter pointing angrily at me, with a scowl on his face so furious it sent chills down my spine.

    As the man grew closer to me, his arms outstretched to grab me, my bird instincts kicked in and I immediately flew into the air. I chased after Will as he darted towards the door, his scared panting was audible to my ears, but the angry shouts of the waiters, janitors, and the confused exclamations of the guests were louder.

    Just then, a large brown object crossed my vision and just like that, William was struck down from the air. He let out a high-pitched caw of distress as he was smashed against the ground. I looked behind me and saw a janitor pick Will up by the neck with a broom at his side. Will was cawing furiously and attempting to claw and peck at the man's hand, but he was unsuccessful.

    Rage began to boil within me, and I couldn't help myself from storming up to the janitor. My appearance changed as I landed on the floor and my hand immediately went into my bag and pulled out the gun. The customers' excited murmurs turned into frightened screams and the building was suddenly echoing with the sound of chairs scraping against wood, screams, and the rustling of people struggling to hide under their tables.

    I walked up to the janitor until the barrel of my flintlock was but a few inches from his nose. The man stared at the gun fearfully before slowly raising his arms above his head, his hand still tightly gripped on Will's neck.

    Despite the loud noise in the buffet, I continued to stare at the man, my brows furrowed and my eyes glaring daggers into him.

    "Put. The bird...down." I ordered angrily through my teeth. The man obediently did as I said and slowly lowered William to the floor, his eyes never leaving mine and my gun never leaving his face.

     Once the man got back up again, I knelt down to pick up Will. The bird struggled a bit in my hand from fear, but I ignored him and placed him on my shoulder.

     "Don't ever touch him again." I ordered with a sinister tone, before walking backwards towards the door, my gun still aimed at him. I put the gun away and as quickly as possible, ran outside and turned back into a raven.

    The sudden change startled William, and I earned a frightened caw as he was suddenly thrown off my shoulder.

    "HOLY TOM TIT! What kind of devilry was that back there!" Will yelled at me once he regained his composure. I didn't look at him, instead I kept my eyes forward and said,

    "I'll explain once we're far away from here." 

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