It was unmistakable, that voice, that accent. Katie turned towards the sound of her name being called. The slender man with long brown hair stood just across the park's yard.
The feeling she felt could be compared to returning to an amazing dream after waking for a moment. Her smile accompanied by a quiet laugh, he wasn't hard to find. He was right there. She began running toward him, but didn't stop as she got closer. Restraint was not in her vocabulary at the moment.
What initially was meant just a way to get to Alexei faster turned into a very powerful hug, more specifically one with a running start.
[+violet "Alexei!"] she yelled right before colliding with him, her arms ready and wrapping around his neck. He must have been caught off guard by the immediate choice to hug him and the force behind it as she found herself falling on him. They landed in grass that seemed to have lacked tending judging by the length of it.
[+violet "Sorry, I couldn't stop myself. I missed you so much."] she said looking into his eyes as her body pressed against his.
Ash watched in the distance cautiously assessing the situation. This must have been the man Katie told her of. But if it was night time why was he not a beast? Katie admitted before not knowing much of how the curse worked but still Ashlynn remained careful as she walked towards them. She gripped the strap of her bag that laid across her chest with one hand, and kept the other free ready to reach in and grab something to defend with. Most of her collection was neatly packed in other boxes and carriers with in the bag but traveling to an unknown world she left a few free and easily accessible. Her ring was here somewhere in this world and she just knew it.
It being in her nature Ashlynn took a mental stock of her surroundings, the man underneath Katie, a girl who kept her distance from the two. Four metal poles that harnessed light that illuminated the area. Two large trees, and a moist feeling that loomed in the air. This world was different, as to how different was to be determined.
[google-font https://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Spectral] [center [spectral [size15 Sweat stuck to the male's forehead as he turned over in his bed. The small house overlooked the park that he had last seen Katie in before she had vanished out of no where. The moment his cousin had been taken by the witch into the abyss a portal had opened and she was gone. Alexei had been stunned, shocked, and left wordless. Everything changed in an instant and he watched one of his brothers get sucked into a vortex.]]]
[center [spectral [size15 Abel had gone with Smitty after that, disappearing with his warlock love. Alexei heard from them on occasion but mostly Smitty was the same. Playing sim's all the time while Abel tried to get his attention. That left Alexei. he had held out hope for five years now, waiting beside the park that she had disappeared from, and yet she hadn't appeared yet. Some told him it was hopeless, but Alexei wasn't going to listen to reason. Downstairs the sound of foot-steps caught his attention but Alexei didn't move from his bed.]]]
[center [spectral [size15 He knew what was coming as it happened this way every morning. A soft knock hit his door and a black haired woman peaked her head around the corner. A soft voice filled the room and Alexei already knew what she was going to say, or at least he thought she did. [+Purple "Alexei there was a flash outside. Two women..there are two women out there."] The words caused the male to jolt up overly fast, sending spinning waves through his head.]]]
[center [spectral [size15 [+red "Two women? Where? In the park? How?"] The words came out in a rush as the woman waved her hand trying to calm him down. Her breath escaping as she stared down at him and than towards the window. Yet Alexei didn't move to far, what if this was wrong? What if something was wrong? What if this wasn't what he hoped it to be? Connie didn't know what Katie looked like, after all she had only stumbled upon him once again by accident.]]]
[center [spectral [size15 Swallowing and looking to the side, Alexei slowly pushed himself up. Turning to look out the widow he felt his breath hitch at the familiar site of red hair. After so long there stood the woman of his dreams. The woman he had been waiting for this whole time in flesh and blood with a woman. On instinct the demon shoved himself up out of bed and bolted down the stairs. The black haired werewolf on his heels the whole time trying not to get to far from him.]]]
[center [spectral [size15 [+red "Katie?!"] After five years the loud German accent hadn't faded. His voice booming through the area as his brown hair fell around his shoulders. Connie stood back behind him, observing the scene carefully in mild fear of what was going on. The demon stood still, waiting to see if the woman would turn. IF he had gone insane or not. Was she really standing in front of him or was this all a dream?]]]
[left [pic https://i.imgur.com/r7REeka.jpg?1]]
Calloused hands were held against the soft silky pale skin, steel blue eyes staring back at her confused and scared. The girl was soft, unhardened by the life of this world. Here it was all about survival. Bandits, monsters, demons, and distorted nature were only a few things that were ready to kill, and still, this girl stood before her, radiating with hope and light. She smiled expecting the best outcome, expecting to see her home.
Drawing in a deep breath Ashlynn couldn’t help but remember the first time Katie was brought to her, and how things change so quickly and so much in five years.
She didn’t want to be bothered by her father’s men. She was hot on a trail of a new magical item, something else to add to her collection. They presented her like a pet. Her face and clothes dirty. Her hair packed with the red dirt of the land. For a while, she and Katie had the rest of the tribe believing the dirt had stained her hair. Her skin burned in the sun, and it painfully clear she was not from this realm.
They gave Katie to her, as strange as that sounds. She was a practice test. If she could keep this girl alive then surely she would be able to become a strong enough priestess to keep Xander safe. The plan was to have Ashlynn reach her potential as the tribe priestess with Katie, and then once Xander was named chief Katie would simply become her servant. Although that was her tribe’s plan, that was Ash’s.
She was clever and knew exactly how to go about her plan. Just by looking at the girl she knew that she was not just a simple wanderer unlucky enough to fall into the hands of her father’s men. She came from a portal, and Ashlynn was determined to reopen it in search of something that was stolen from her.
They spent four years together mainly searching for the portal. It was subtle but if one knew what to look for, it could be found. Like a small ripple, in reality, a tear in the norm, or something as simple as a flower growing in the red dirt of the desert, with no source of water near.
Heart racing in the desert heat Ashlynn placed her hands on Katie’s cheek.
[+7C0000 “Ready?”] she asked flicking open a pocket knife from its sheath.
[+right [pic https://i.imgur.com/evYqBRG.jpg?1]]
Five years, so many things had happened. So many people she watched destroy themselves, so many people she saw die. Still, she remained true to her goal; to get home and find Alexei. She made him a promise, one she intended on keeping.
She journeyed through this world with Ashlynn the daughter of the chief and the high priestess in training at the time of their meeting. Things and terms were different here. She was under the assumption that a priestess would perform rituals and heal the soldiers and other mythical things. Here it was a practitioner of magic one trained to defend the reigning chief of the tribe, a soldier itself, a magically armed bodyguard.
Katie learned quickly that Ashlynn wasn’t going to keep to her father’s plan, and once she heard of the events leading to Katie’s arrival her schemes to escape this world and take Katie with her were set in motion.
It took almost 3 years of constant searching for Ashlynn to find where she thought the portal may be. The two had grown close, although Ash would never admit it. She would brush it off saying it was an end to a mean, or this wouldn’t be happening if there wasn’t something in it for her.
Katie looked at Ashlynn finally ready to go home and smiled.
As Ashlynn pulled the knife Katie closed her eyes desperately hoping Alexei would be easy to find. She hoped it would be as easy as going through the portal and have him waiting there like no time has passed.
She closed her eyes tightly as the blade ran across the palm of her hand, and the warmth of Ash’s hand squeezing her first shut over the flower was comforting.
The wind began to pick up, and dust and dirt swirled around, both young women shielded their eyes as the space above the flower began to glow and distort.
The breath from her chest felt like it was being pulled out of her as the portal opened and sucked them through.
All Katie could remember through the portal was a blinding light.
They were there in the park was she last seen Alexei. It was night time and the faint glow of street lamps could be seen in the distance. It must have been the middle of the night here. Although she could remember this park so vividly there was so much she had forgotten over the years. Like where exactly she was. The air was humid and smelled of rain. She closed her eyes, she was almost home.
[+violet “Ash...We did it. We’re here.”] she whispered as she grabbed her friend's hand looking out toward the street lamps.