MoboReader> Fantasy > Changed.

   Chapter 1 Pain.

Changed. By The Other Girl Characters: 13395

Updated: 2018-03-08 15:11

I close my eyes as another wave of pain passes through me. What is?happening?to me?

A loud scream rips its way from my mouth before I can think to stop it. What's worse, I'm home alone and no one is here to help me. It feels as if I'm on fire, every piece of my body singing in pain.

I begin to cough, feeling something thick and sticky flying out of my mouth. The smell of it is what really hit home; I know what I am coughing up. Blood.

Tears slide down my face from the pure agony my body is going through. I lift my hand to wipe away the mess?and immediately regret it. The burning shoots up my arm; it bites at my muscles, intensifying. I quickly make a mental note not to move before setting my arm back down into its original place.

My stomach screams at me in hunger, but I ignore it. I don't want to even begin to think how much that would hurt. This weekend is a three-day weekend. If I'm lucky, I will be over whatever this is by then. It started out with a simple headache at the beginning of the week, along with some uncontrollable sneezes. I figured that it was just a bug going around. People at my school had been sneezing, having runny noses, even a few coughing fits. The typical flu virus, but had everyone else gone through this sensation I am feeling right now?

Pity flows through me as I realize one of my friends had gone through the headaches. Did she have this burning pain that I have right now?

I quickly decide that I'm going to call Bri; the one I had blamed for the sickness. I lift my arm and grab my phone, attempting to ignore the pain and burning that shoots through my arm. Tears spring to my eyes rapidly and blur my vision. My fingers touch the keys that bring me to her name and I struggle to make my hand work well enough through the pain to press "call."

"Hello?" Her voice asks after an instant, "Katie?"

"Bri.." My voice trails off. It sounds so hoarse, like I haven't spoken in months, though I talked to her yesterday.

"Wow, you sound like shit." She says honestly, "Want me to come over?"

"No, I just have a few questions." I whisper. A cough shakes my body and I flinch in pain.

"I'm coming over." She says with finality. I know better than to argue with her, this is a woman who has come to my house simply because she wanted to. With no notice. In the middle of dinner. I'm sure she doesn't need much of a push to get here here. She never does. Me telling her not to come will do little to change her mind, anyway.

"Okay, just be careful." My voice is weak now, like it simply doesn't want to work. Meanwhile my mind is rampant with thoughts of what could be happening to me. I hear the line go dead and know she's coming over. I hear a knock at my door not ten seconds later. Bri lives farther than that from my house...

"Who is it?" I call out. Are my parents home? They're not due back until tonight.

"Someone that's here to help." A deep, masculine voice says through the door. My brow immediately furrows. The voice is completely unfamiliar, which is odd because I know just about everybody in my small town. Also, how did this person find out where I live? I mean, I'm not exactly "in town." Most people get lost just thinking about where I live. I hear the click of the door opening and my stomach twists. I didn't invite him in? Why is he coming in? I think of how helpless I am in my current position. I literally wouldn't be able to protect myself.

"Katie? I'm here. And who is this adorable guy out here?" I can practically taste the flirtation in Bri's voice. I can picture the way her eyes scan his features. I roll my eyes as I realize she is the one coming in, not Mr. Mystery.

"Come in Bri." I attempt to shout, even though she's probably already indoors. I glance at the clock and realize my mental tirade had gone on for ten minutes. That guy stood out there for ten minutes? "Persistent" is the first word that comes to mind. Persistent is usually followed by creepy, stalker, or something of the sort.

"He's cute. Who is he, anyway? I haven't seen him around. Is he a possible boyfriend that you haven't told me about?" Her eyes sparkle with mischief before she takes in my form on the couch. It is then I am aware of the sweat beading on my face and how my hair is practically soaked. Bri frowns at my condition.

"Hell if I know." I say a little louder and my voice cracks. The burning is now somehow stretching to my vocal cords, making talking a lot harder to talk than it should be.

Not three seconds later, a tall man, around two years older than me with deep brown hair and tanned skin walks in. He has a smile on his face that looks caring yet has a dangerous edge to it.

I see what my friend is saying, though. He is definitely attractive; I wouldn't put him under, "My type, " though. He seems too, "overly protective bad boy who could kill a man for looking at him the wrong way." My parental approval seeking mind wouldn't allow the mere thought. Plus he kind of just walked into my house uninvited. Who does that.

"Who are you?" I ask, trying my best to seem intimidating despite my condition. My dogs must have sensed the tension because an immediate rumble of paws on linoleum moments later and three crazed animals marching in to see the stranger proves my point. Immediately barks fill the room as a small smile spreads across the man's face and he bends down to begin to pet them.

"He's a dog person too? I think I'm in love.." Bri whispers. I send her a skeptical glance but say nothing. Of course she would find him drool worthy. A small curve of his lips tells me he heard the remark and I sink further into the couch.

"My name is Aaron Nanuk." He answers. He stands up from petting my dogs and makes eye contact with me. I do nothing to respond other than keep my gaze on him.

"You said you were here to help. Help with what?" I hear Bri shift in her seat on the couch. She leans close to me and drops her voice to an incredibly low whisper.

"Probably help with stealing your virginities." My face flushes as all of my blood simultaneously drains and fills my face completely. Please tell me he didn't hear that.

"You feel sick, do you not? Can you stand up?" His voice doesn't acknowledge what my friend had said, and relief flows freely through me. Yet the thought of moving made me flinch.

"I'd rather not..." I murmur.

"Very well." His gaze swings over to Bri's. "May I talk to Katie alone?" I gave her a look that pled don't-you-dare-leave-me, but she seemed to have either ignored or not gotten the hint because she quickly stood up.

"Since you have Aaron here I don't see why I'm being a third wheel." With that no

te, she leaves out my front door. I make eye contact with the remaining person in the room. Something in me screams that he should leave. That my world is about to be turned upside down for either the better or the worse.

"What's wrong with me?" I demand.

"What moon were you born under?" Aaron asks me, completely ignoring my question. I squint, making a face that could be described as tasting something extremely bitter. I hate being dismissed.

"What? Do you mean like a moon phase? I don't know. Are you going to tell me what's wrong?" My eyes search his for any sort of answer. Why does he want to know what moon phase I have? Does it really matter? I mean, I was born at night; but still, I do not find this necessary.

"I suppose I can try to explain." His voice breaks off and his face blanks in thought.

I stare at him in annoyance. My voice is slightly less raspy with use, but not by much. It still hurts to talk, but finding out what's wrong with me seems higher up on the list than worrying about how much pain I'm in. I motion with my eyes to the small crack beside the couch I'd slept on last night. That's where my laptop lays.

"You can look it up on my laptop if you want." Maybe the couch is why I'm sore. I must have just slept wrong. This isn't really a sore feeling, though. More like I have been dumped in gasoline and set on fire every time I attempt to move. Aaron reaches over me to grab the computer. I absentmindedly wonder how bad I look, remembering the way I am soaked with sweat, when his skin brushes mine.

"Holy shit!" I yelp. Not only were my nerves on fire, but it seems as if he was a hot curling iron. "What the hell are you, a sun?" My recoil from touching him sent my body into another painful episode. I close my eyes to keep tears from falling, but one slid down my cheek anyway. Is he sick also? No, he can move. Maybe he's sick with something else. No one is naturally that warm. Aaron looks at me and sighs.

"This is your first day feeling like this?" He asks as he grabs a napkin from the kitchen. My face scrunches slightly as Aaron dabs at my cheek, careful not to make skin-on-skin contact again. When he pulls it away I feel my eyes widen. The napkin is stained red; I've been crying blood? Is that even possible? I shiver and silently curse as the pain hits me again.

"Shh, don't move." He says delicately. I was going to answer with some snide remark, but his eyes showed that he just cared about my well-being, so I kept my mouth shut.

"Yes, " I answer his question. "I woke up like this about an hour ago." He nods as if this meant something and opens my laptop, pressing the "on" button.

"How were you feeling earlier this week?" He raises his brow and gives me a small smile. There was slight knowledge in that smile of his, something a twenty year old shouldn't have. I choose to ignore it for the time being.

"In the beginning of this week, it was just a few headaches. The next day it was headaches and sneezing." I pause when I hear him tapping on the keyboard, cheeks slightly burning when I think of what my password is. "My password, is, uh.."

"Iris. I know." He interrupted. "Like the song by Goo Goo Dolls."

I tried to look less freaked out than I was, and I also try to keep the burning in my cheeks from becoming too visible and stop its spreading to my whole body, though this burn is for a different reason.

"How did you-" I began, "Wait, I don't even want to know."

Lie. That was a complete lie. This stranger, who I haven't even seen around my tiny town, just waltzes into my house and somehow knows my computer password, (Something my mom doesn't even know!) and also acts like he has a clue as to why I'm feeling like a lit candle. Not to mention that his own skin is like he's a damn stove top set on high. Why is he here and why does he know so much stuff about me? The fact that he's not even answering any of my questions just aggravates me even more!

"When's your birthday?" He asks me. Oh, so there's something he doesn't know about me.

"March 11, 1998." I say, eyeing him warily.

"Waxing gibbous." His answer was almost immediate. My face is completely blank. I remember something about the words from science class in the eighth grade, but my mind simply doesn't put the pieces together. "It's the moon phase before the full moon. Directly before." He says, sensing my confusion.

"So it's not even a cool moon? It's the fat one before the full moon? I, at least, wanted a crescent moon or something like that." I frown, somewhat disappointed at the news. Aaron gives me an amused smirk. The smirk is attractive, the way his eyes seem to light up while a ghost of a smile plays on his lips. My eyes widen at that thought and I quickly slap it away. No. My parents would never approve. He has that Bad Boy feel about him. Idiot.

"You don't even know what you're saying." His eyes are lit up with happiness, making his face glow. "Anyway, I'm called a seeker. I smell out new shifters.." Immediately my brows furrow.

"Seeker? Shifter? What are you talking about?"

"I'm going to take you back to my... House and we'll stay there for awhile. Okay?" Who is this man? I'm not going anywhere. I voice that with a few choice profanities. I mean, I'm not particularly fond of school, but being pulled out to go to some stranger's house is definitely not the route I want to go on. How exactly would I get a diploma? Continue on with my future? Especially when I have all of two weeks left until graduation!

"I'm going to teach you in whatever way we will need you. I can't really go into detail now, I don't want to overwhelm you, I'm sorry. I guess you can call me some sort of tutor, teaching you about a different kind of history." His voice breaks me out of thought and I notice he's holding out some kind of pink smoothie for me. This brings my mind to my burning limbs and growling stomach, but I just stare at it. My mind immediately goes defensive, the way anyone's mind would when there is an older stranger in front of you trying to give you something that you know nothing about.

"Are you trying to drug me? Because I will tell you right now that no matter how drugged up I am I can still-"

"That's some tough talk for someone who can't even move." His voice is firm and he's beginning to sound irritated. "Drink up, the burning should go away and you might even be able to get up and walk around." I keep my stare at him for a solid minute, trying to see any hint of a lie on his face. When I fail to see one, I shut my eyes and reach out for the drink, doing my best to ignore the painful spasms burning their way through my muscles.

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