Little Games: Chapter 23
I wasn’t brave enough to look at myself in the mirror. It wasn’t that I was afraid of what I looked like, but I was afraid I’d see someone I didn’t recognize staring back at me. So I opted to sit on my bed and just stare at everything. It was all so strange. Like seeing someone you haven’t seen in a long while and they suddenly pop up again. And you don’t really remember them.
I wanted to go downstairs and talk to my dad, but I was worried. Plus when I opened my bedroom door, the light from the hall window was painful again. No doubt the rest of the house was the same.
After some time, I could hear someone coming up the steps. I couldn’t bring myself to look up when they came into my room. I at least had an idea of what my dad looked like from when I was little, but Derek was different. I loved him and yet he’d be a complete stranger I’d never seen before. “Autumn? Is everything okay?” Derek asked, paused in the door. I didn’t know how to answer! Was I just supposed to come right out and say it or just wait for it to come up? I couldn’t see the latter going over so well with anyone honestly.
I didn’t have much time to think of a way to bring it up before I felt the bed shift under the werewolf’s weight. “Why’re you sitting in the dark?” he asked, his voice so full of concern it actually made me want to cry. And that’s exactly what happened. I couldn’t help it! This was just all too much to take in! I felt like I was going to explode! When the werewolf pulled me into a hug, I couldn’t help but bury my face in his chest and tried to let him comfort me despite not knowing what was wrong.
"This is too much!" I sobbed, clutching at him almost desperately. "I can’t handle this! I’m not used to this!” I went on and he rubbed smooth circles into my back to try and sooth me.
"Autumn, hun, you have to tell me what’s wrong. I can’t do anything if I don’t know what’s going on." he whispered in my ear and I knew he was right. Of course he was right! So, I took a couple of deep breaths to try and calm myself, but my stomach was still in my throat. Reaching up, I ran my fingers over his face like I had done so many times, telling myself that this was a miracle.
"I’ve spent the last ten years not being able to see and suddenly, everything’s changed. I don’t know what thing…that Kanima did, but…I’m scared, Derek." I said, my voice so quiet that if he was was human, he wouldn’t have heard me. I could feel myself trembling and I couldn’t stop myself. "I’m so scared." I said again, clutching to the werewolf with all the strength I could muster.
"What’s wrong?" Derek said and, before I could protest, he hooked his fingers under my chin and forced me to look up at him. When our eyes finally connected, I was speechless. He had the most beautiful hazel eyes and I would have gotten lost in them had he not pulled me out of my trance. "What happened to your eyes?" he asked breathlessly, his eyebrows furrowing in confusion.
"I don’t know. When I woke up, the light was too much, so I had to close the curtains. When there wasn’t as much light, I could…see everything. I’m so confused and scared." I explained, not able to stop the tears that fell. I was surprised when Derek said nothing and only pulled me against his chest again.
"Everything’s going to be okay. I promise." he said after a moment. "And this’ll be a good thing. You’ll see." he added with a small smile, pulling me back a little so he could wipe my eyes with the sleeve of his sweater.
Third Person POV
"It must’ve been the poison in the Kanima’s claws that caused this. It’s the only explanation I can think of. It’s understandable why she’s so afraid. She’s never been fond of change." Carson said later that night after they had gotten Autumn to go back to bed for some much needed rest.
"That doesn’t explain her eyes though. Why would they change like that?" Derek asked, leaning against the kitchen counter and seemingly staring off into space. There was nothing but silence and the werewolf looked up from the spot on the ground to raise an eyebrow at the vampire. "I’m guessing you know why." he stated and the blonde gave a slight shake of the head.
"I have a theory, but it’s a long shot." he said, but didn’t make any attempt to inform the brunette. "You should go home. I’ll…call if there’s any change." he added after a moment and left the room. "And Derek," he said, popping his head back into the kitchen to give said werewolf a pointed look. "I mean go home. She’ll be fine. Autumn might think I don’t know that you stay here most nights, but she’s wrong. The house still reeks of you after you’ve ‘left’. As long as nothing’s going on while you’re here, I won’t say anything. But tonight, you need to actually get some rest as well. So…go home. Come back tomorrow.” he said and left before the other could say anything, much less argue.
Derek stood there for a moment, a small smirk on his face, before pushing off the counter and grabbing his jacket. “Are you sure she’ll be fine?” Derek asked, his hand waiting on the knob of the front door.
"Of course. If anything happens, you’ll be the second to know." Carson answered from his spot in the living room doorway. Derek nodded before opening the door and heading outside. Derek wasn’t going to lie and say he didn’t want to stay, but he wasn’t about to go against Carson right now. Not when his daughter’s life was on the line.
He just wished he knew what the vampires theory was.