The Night Fox

Prologue

“You shouldn’t have come here, Cor.’’

“I know, Castor.’’

They stood in the forest, the wind whipping at their clothes and whistling through the trees, their eyes locked once again. It was easy to get lost in each other’s eyes, with the icy blue oceans of Castor’s and the shadows and darkness in Cordelia’s. 

They should have never met. 

They should have been trying to kill each other. 

They shouldn’t have been meeting in this forest, the forest they made the mistake of meeting in all those years ago. 

They shouldn’t have been standing there, getting lost in each other’s eyes, feeling love course through them.

They shouldn’t have ever been together. 

Because now, they knew. They knew who Cordelia was, and they knew that Castor loved her. 

“We don’t have a lot of time, Cordelia,’’ Castor said, touching her arm. “Tell me what you need to say, and I’ll send you back.’’

“You love me, don't you?’’

Castor tipped up her chin so she was at eye level. “Of course.’’

“Then you need to make a decision.’’

He ran a thumb down her cheek. “What do you mean?’’

“Do you choose them, or me and the baby?’’

Castor gasped. “I’m going to be a--”

“Yes, my love.’’ A tear escaped her eye, falling down her cheeks. “So you must choose.’’

Castor could feel his heart splitting in two. There was no way he could choose. Foolishly, he hoped he could have both, but he knew it was impossible. 

“Choose, Castor,’’ Cordelia whispered.

“I…”

“Follow your heart. Not your gut instinct or your logic, your heart.’’

He could feel his eyes prick with unshed tears.

“There’s no way I could choose--”

“You have to.’’

An invisible hand seized his throat. He was aware of time, ticking away from him, of being lost in the wind and almost taunting him. 

Tik-Tok, Castor. 

Squeezing his eyes shut, his hands tightened around Cordelia’s. It felt like the weight of the world was pressing down on him as he felt flurries of snow kiss his head and clothes, little pricks of cold. 

He let out a gasp, a wheezing, sharp breath as if he managed to break to the surface in a pool of uncertainty. “I choose you.’’

“I was hoping you wouldn’t. It’s not safe.’’ Cordelia said, but she went on her tippy toes and kissed him. 

Her lips warm against his, he kissed her back passionately, enjoying it despite himself. This was a forbidden kiss, a kiss entailing death, a kiss where he betrayed his people because he couldn’t help but fall for the enemy. 

“We have to stop,’’ he whispered against her lips.

Cordelia pulled away, a tear running down her pale cheeks. 

“It’s too late.’’

Her whisper, a sentence of three simple words, sent a stone to his gut and wrenched his heart. Footsteps pounded against the forest floor, coming closer and closer until they were standing in front of them. 

“Castor.’’

He swallowed the bile rising in his throat as he grabbed Cordelia’s hand, staring him down. A man with silver hair and a tall, intimidating figure stood in front of him, his eyes scrutinizing, a smirk teasing a corner of his lip. 

“Oberon.’’

Oberon smiled and opened his arms to the men and women behind him, letting out a laugh. “Do you see what I’m seeing? One of our own, with them. The monsters we were sent to hunt. They love each other.’’

Cordelia’s hand tightened around Castor’s.

“How is that possible?’’ Oberon continued. “How is it possible for people like us to love people like them? Tell me, Castor.’’ Oberon said, turning to him. “Do you love this thing, this creature of darkness and death?’’

Castor’s hand tightened even more against Cordelia’s. 

“I think you know the answer.’’

Oberon’s next laugh was filled without humor. 

“Last I checked, love between us and them is forbidden.’’

He turned to his people. “Isn’t that right?’’

Everyone nodded and muttered approval. 

He turned back to Castor, an evil smirk on his lips as if he were enjoying this. 

“And what do we do if someone breaks the rules?’’

Cordelia inhaled sharply, trying to catch his eye. Still keeping an eye on Oberon, he glanced at her, hoping his eyes would send the message. 

Run! Run, get out of here! They’re going to kill us!

And then…

Gunshots shrieked towards them and hit Castor with a bang. Cordelia screamed and took off running, throwing a glance behind her, not believing that her love was dead, unmoving on the snowy forest floor, laying in a pool of his own blood. She ran as fast as she could, the world blurry with her tears, doing the last thing he ever said to her, into the forest and the night.

She tripped on a root and fell to the ground, clutching her belly. The belly that held her unborn child, a baby she could already feel love for as it grew inside of her. 

You’re different from the others, Castor had always said. You are not like them. Your mind is tormented, but your heart is pure. You haven’t let the shadows take hold of you. You are fighting a bloody battle, every single day, to let the light win. 

Cordelia stood, her love’s words fading in the wind. She touched her belly and whispered into the wind.

“I will protect you, my child. From the people who killed your father, from the horrors of the world, and my own darkness.’’




 



Olivia Gordon Reid

#2099 in Fantasy
#917 in Romantic fantasy
#790 in Mystery

Story about: magic, mystery romance, victorian england

Edited: 04.10.2020

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