A few days go by, and Im adjusting well. Damien has been teaching me all about the Beastmen culture. I even learn more about their language. It is hard to remember everything since I can take notes. Damien is good about quizzing me on it every day.
I sit up and stretch my sore muscles. Its difficult to adjust from a soft bed to a bed of leaves and grass. As I stand up, I notice something by the mouth of the cave. I get closer and see its a bundle of fruit wrapped in a large leaf.
I feel Damiens presence behind me. "What do you think?" He asks sniffing the fruit.
"Someone is interested in me, any idea who?"
He sniffs a little more. "No one here from the village."
I kneel and look through the contents.
Suddenly he grabs my wrist hard. "Whatever you do, don accept it."
I look at him, confused. "Why?"
He looks into the woods, fixated on something by the trees. "Fox."
I yank my wrist away and push the fruit aside. "Whats wrong with them?"
He sits beside me, still eyeing the treeline. "For as long as I can remember, the Fox clan has been known for charming females. Once they have them close enough, theyll mate. But, once the kits are born they kill the female. After that, they take all she has. They mostly try to target wealthy females."
"Then why target me?"
"They could sense that you
e a potential breeder. The Fox Clan can rarely produce females, they
e dying off. Most of the clan have gone feral, finding whatever female they can find."
"Feral? Like, wild Beastmen?"
He thinks for a moment. "In a way, I guess. They kidnap females and in most cases force them to be spouses. Don worry I will protect you no matter the cost."
It shocks me to hear that. No one has ever said that to me. "Thank you, that means a lot."
I glance over and see a light blush on his face.
Maybe he does like me, a little bit anyway. I scoot closer to him and lay my head on his upper arm. (Im too short to reach his shoulder.) I feel his muscle stiffen, but he doesn move.
"I know this isn …comfortable, but once you have your cycle we need to mate." Theres pain in his words, but I understand why.
"I see, would you feel better if I told you I didn know what I was doing?"
He chokes on some water and looks at me shocked. "Youve never mated before?"
I shake my head. "In my world, we were more focused on working to survive. Right now my world is struggling, almost fighting between males and females."
"You must be strong."
I smile weakly. "I can be, I have to be strong even when I can be."
We are silent for a long time, listening to the summer breeze flow by. Theres a smell to the breeze. "Its gonna rain."
"I must go hunt, stay here, and don eat the fruit."
I nod and go into the cave, I can take a nap while hes gone. Im still adjusting to always being outside. I sit on our makeshift bed, made of leaves and what I think is hay. We even traded some extra hide for a blanket, so I could stay warm. No matter how cold it gets Damien never sleeps next to me. I don blame him, especially since he doesn like girls.
Once I get comfortable, exhaustion hits me and I fall asleep.
I wake to paws on the rocks of the cave. "Damien? Is that you?" I sit up and rub my eyes awake. As they adjust I notice a small dark figure close by.
Its a fox, sniffing at the bundle of fruit.
I get up and walk towards it. "Are you hungry?" I ask still rubbing my eyes.
It steps back curling its tail in fear.
I smile. "Don worry, I won hurt you. You can have some food if you
e hungry." I open it and push it toward them.
They sniff some more but don take any.
"Here, its good." I take off a grape and eat it.
The dark foxs red eyes sparkle. It digs into the fruit and pushes the grapes toward me.
Once it finishes, it licks its lips and crawls into my lap. Not too long later it falls asleep.
Damien returns at sunset with fresh kills. " I got some extra this time, we can dry the meat for later." He looks at the black fox in my lap, his eye twitching with anger. He quickly changes to his beast form and growls loudly.
It wakes up and yelps, hiding behind me.
"Damien, whats wrong?"
"Hes a fox! I told you, you can trust them!" He snarls.
"Well, at least Im not fat and mean! You
e a brute!" The voice says behind me.
I turn around and see the fox trying to be intimidating.
I stand up and cross my arms. "Enough!"
They both look at me surprised.
"Knock it off! The fox was hungry, so I gave it the fruit we had. Is that so wrong of me?"
Damien sighs. "As long as he leaves by sunrise." He walks off to skin his kills.
I sigh and sit back down.
The little fox crawls back into my lap.
"Whats your name? I ask brushing their fur back into place.
"Comac, whats yours?"
"Call me Fae." Its not my real name, but Ill take any extra protection I can get.
"Pretty, are you sure theres no way I can stay? I can be useful, I gather a lot!"
"Ill discuss it with Damien tonight if I can."
He nods and then walks off and lies by the entrance. He stays a respectable distance away from me.
Damien pays no attention to him as he smokes the meat.
The next morning, I woke up and something feels off. When I stand and feel something slowly drip down my thigh. Once I look down, I saw that its blood. My heart skips a beat. My cycle started? Before I start to panic too much, I take a deep breath. I look around for some extra hide from the night before. Once I find it, I wrap it around me as best as possible.
Damien wakes with a stir and sniffs the air. "I smell blood, are you okay?" He sounds nervous.
I nod. "Yes, my cycle just started."
"Do you need anything right now?" He changes into his beast form, ready to go.
I think for a moment. "Maybe some extra hide? I don want to ruin the bedding."
I scratch him on his head, then behind the ears.
He groans and his tail moves slowly.
We both snap back to reality and jump back quickly.
"Ill be off then." He trots out.
"Right." I leave as well, with Comac in tow.
After walking in silence for what feels like an eternity, Comac stops.
"Everything okay?" I ask.
He nods. "Yes, I just thought I heard something. Oh!" He dives into a bush, rustling it around. When he comes out, he drags a small leaf out. It has a variety of berries on it.
"Where did you find those?" I say curiously.
"I always try to keep some hidden around. Its easier for me to keep track." He keeps looking around as if someones watching us.
I crouch down and whisper to him. "Be honest, is someone watching us or after you?"
He looks shocked at the question. "My clan is looking for females. They want to force them to be breeders, but I don want them to hurt you. Youve been so kind to me." He changes to his human form. His skin is pale compared to how dark his fur is. His hair goes to his waist and its pitch black. He looks me up and down with his dark red eyes. "I am one of the few of the fox clan to reject their ways." He pulls me in close to him, one arm around my waist. His free hand cups my cheek, slowly sliding through my long hair. "So please, Fae. I need you to make me your slave, so I won be killed by the clansmen."
Before I realize it we are inches apart. His eyes are locked with mine, filled with lust and desperation. His lean body is warm against mine, his breath caresses my cheek.
I shake my head clear of my lust and gently push him away. "Im sorry, but I can be with you just yet. I want Damien to be my first. Youll just have to wait for me okay?"
Suddenly Im pushed to the ground, I glance at who it is and its Damien. He aggressively sniffs me up and down. "What did he do to you?" He asks angrily. "He didn do anything. I pushed him away before anything happened."
He huffs. "Good." He releases me from his wolf grip and looks at Comac. "If you hurt her in any way, Ill rip you apart."
Comac quickly changes back to fox form. "If Fae orders it, then Ill accept it." He turns around and walks off.
Once he is out of earshot Damien looks at me. "Fae, huh?"
"Its the name I chose for myself. You know, to further hide me."
He nods. "Its beautiful."
I take a deep breath, not realizing that my heart was racing.
Is he, jealous? I look over at him, sitting next to me. Its amazing, we haven been together too long, and I think Im growing on him.
"Did I hurt you?"
I shake my head. "You just startled me, thats all."
I sigh. If these boys continue fighting like this, I don know how much more I can take.