General Fiction posted March 24, 2020 Chapters:  ...4 5 -6- 

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A chapter in the book Obsessive Tendencies

Life in a Bubble

by Y. M. Roger

Though Fated Mates, Celeste's and Gregor's realities must be dealt with. Celeste, a woodland fairy, hasn't even begun to deal with herd politics yet because she has friends to face first...
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Where we last saw Celeste (Chapter Four): Joaquim froze in his tracks, standing for a few silent moments. Then, slowly, he turned only his head to angle his mouth back in our direction.
“Unless you’d like to talk right here” – theatrical pause, please, because he’s Joaquim – “
I sigh.

“Come on, Justine.” I grab her arm, trying to sound light-hearted. “You know how he gets.”
“Uuuuugh! Why must you indulge him?” she asks disgustedly as we reluctantly follow.

Because he smells a werewolf on me.
But I didn’t say that out loud. Not yet.

Begin Chapter Six:             
So, here we were: the three of us out of sight behind the large boulder that marked the border of our herd’s bubble inside reality. I’d oft times wondered why the Fates still allowed our bubble to exist when other creatures – werewolves, ogres, leprechauns, and more – were forced to live ‘in the open’ alongside the humans. In fact, there are still those – the oldest among us – that believe the bubble will eventually disintegrate, and we will be forced to deal with the real world.
But none of that was of concern today. I could feel Joaquim’s eyes burning into me as I looked everywhere but his direction. I was still lost in my head as Justine squatted at the water’s edge to direct some of the small fry there in her latest choreography. Teeny sparks of magic played on her fingers where they touched the water and the fish could not help but follow. It was her graceful actions and tone of voice that made her words seem almost comical, even though we knew she was totally serious.
“Get your bitchin’ over with, Keem.” She gently hummed a little tune, coaxing a dragonfly to join her production. “You’ve only got my patience for a few moments this evening, and that’s cuz Cee seems to think you deserve it. Jaiyelle is saving me a place at the bonfire tonight.”
See? That, right there: Jaiyelle. Oh how I had longed for him to notice me over Justine… prayed to the goddess for him to be my mate… even though I knew he only had eyes for Justine. For years I had fought the jealousy from taking over our friendship. And now? Now, his name may as well be Toadhopper.
The thought makes me snort out a laugh, breaking the silence between Joaquim and me.
“I’m pretty sure there’s nothing funny about this matter, Girly.”
I jerk my eyes and my attention toward Joaquim, narrowing my lids in warning. He knows I hate that nickname. He only uses it to get to me – not that such would take very much tonight. I really was not ready to talk about the whole Gregor thing yet.
As soon as our eyes met, he let loose that grin of his. You know, the one that if you didn’t trust him with your life you’d think he was getting ready to unleash the hounds of Hell on you. Or maybe eat you for dinner… one of the two. And with that animated hair – the aquamarine just a bit lighter than Justine’s – and those icy emeralds for eyes? Oh. My. Stars. He was a force of nature for sure – an extremely handsome and mischievous force of nature that knew just enough right now to be dangerous.
The whole walk over here I had played out all sorts of lame excuses in my head as to why I would have the scent of werewolf on me – every one of them had been shot down soundly by my common sense.
A brawl of werewolves broke out right in front of me on the way home, and I didn’t get away fast enough before one fell on me. And I hadn’t a scratch or bruise on me? Yeah, that didn’t work. There had been a motorcycle accident on the street and the rider, who I knew was a werewolf, had been badly hurt and needed someone to take care of him. A wolf accepting help from a non-wolf? Uuh, no. A werewolf had joined the troupe, and I had unfortunately been paired with him for the lifts today. A ballet-dancing werewolf? Not no, but hell no. Even their females are… I could feel myself physically shudder at the attempted mental comparison of one of them to me.
Nope. The only excuse was the truth, and I guess it was time to face the music. Or, in this case, face my friends. I take a deep breath to answer, but Justine stands and interrupts.
“What’s not funny, Keem?” She looks her brother up and down then looks between him and me. “And why do you two look like you think the other stole your chocol– ”
“Oh, I’m pretty sure it’s not chocolate that’s being sampled here is it, Girly?”
Joaquim just loved to push buttons, especially when he knew he was in a position to do so. Justine rolled her eyes and most of her upper body at him.
“You know she hates that name her dad call– ”
“Oooooo!” Joaquim’s eyes gained a faint glow this time – he was going to be the death of me. “Does Daddy know about your little tryst, Gir– ”
Justine shoved her brother.
“You are such an arse!”she shouted at the exact same time I shot back with, “It wasn’t a tryst, Joaquim!”
Something inside of me started burning, needing me to claim and defend Gregor. “It was just a…”
The burning increased. They both stared at me, unbelieving, as I swallowed hard and rubbed my chest at the internal irritation. I took a cleansing breath, acknowledging that it really wasn’t just a kiss. I was in so much trouble! I felt my face redden as I stated what I really felt.
“It was the best kiss I’ve ever had.” The burning began to subside, and I couldn’t help the joy that bubbled up from inside of me. “Oh, goddess help me, he felt heavenly against me!”
Even though it was just a loud whisper, both of them continued staring at me: Joaquim in defiant satisfaction and Justine in complete and utter surprise.
The silence held for only a few seconds before a look of realization enveloped her face followed by just a hint of a scrunching of her nose.
“You kissed a human, Celeste?” Justine barely finished her question before Joaquim doubled over with laughter. I just stood there, unable to wipe the stupid grin from my face as the memory of Gregor’s touch washed through my being again. Yep, the trouble I was in could not begin to be defined…
Justine turned her disbelief toward her brother and quickly switched it to sibling annoyance.  “And why are you laughing at me?”
Joaquim calmed himself just enough to speak.
“Yeah, CeeBee, why don’t you tell us both what I’m laughing about?”
I let my eyes fall away. Hadn’t we discussed enough of my personal business for one day? My stomach muscles tightened a bit, and I wrapped my arms around myself. My body, it seemed, wasn’t content with this gossip session anymore. It wanted Gregor.
Suddenly, my momentary joy turned back into uneasiness and was making a head run for fear. I had never been afraid inside the compound in my life.
“It’s not funny, Keem,” I managed to mumble as I stepped away, sinking slowly to sit on the soft tuft of grass between two of the larger rocks. I gazed out at the stream, watching the water flow playfully between stones as leaves body surfed along its ripples. “And he’s not a human, Teena.”
“Weeeellll…” Joaquim was getting all wound up again.
Whack! Without turning, I guessed Justine smacked him. Again.
“Shhhh!” Justine again, shushing Joaquim.
Justine appeared beside me, her voice gentle as if she were talking to a scared animal. In a way, I felt like she was. This was crazy!
“So, if he wasn’t human, Cee, what was he?”
When the word got stuck in my throat, Joaquim leapt onto one of the larger stones in the stream and began gracefully stepping and dancing amongst all of the rocks around which the water flowed. I had always marveled at his gracefulness, and I know he was just trying to make me smile.
“Tell you what, CeeBee,” his voice was still heavily laced with mischief – he was, after all, Joaquim – and I was just waiting for the ‘punch line’. He made a few more pirouettes between rocks and lowered himself slowly so we were face-to-face. “I’ll tell her he’s a werewolf if you give us a name.”
And there it was.
So proud of himself, Joaquim’s entire body – including that wild hair – radiated his enjoyment. Goddess, if I didn’t love him so much I’d kill him.
Justine gasped and was about to chastise him, thinking he was teasing again, when I managed to get my voice unstuck.
Joaquim made the most ungraceful slip into the stream I shall ever see. And the noise of complete shock he made as he landed in the water? Soooo worth it.

To be continued…

‘Obsessive Tendencies’ is an adult fantasy novel about a reality in which the fantasy realm has somehow been merged with our human one. Celeste is a woodland fairy and Gregor is a werewolf alpha-heir. This is the fifth chapter in their story.

Celeste (woodland fairy) – her herd lives in a magical encampment in Gregor’s were-clan domain. They are not associated with werewolves at all.
Joaquim (woodland fairy) – twin brother to Justine, lifelong friend of Celeste.
Justine (woodland fairy) – twin sister to Joaquim, lifelong friend of Celeste.
Gregor (werewolf) – Alpha-heir to the Charbonneau Werewolf Clan, the largest clan in the Southeast United States.
Andre (werewolf) – best friend and trusted lieutenant to Gregor.

Talietha (werewolf) – Female Alpha-heir of the Midwest's Gestault were-clan and betrothed to Gregor by arrangement.



So, we're just gonna call this '3rd week of the month' the new normal on this story's release date... it is what it is (lol!)!! Thank you, as always, for reading me! ;-)

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