My prayers weren't answered. I didn't hear another pair of frantic footsteps, or breathing. Didn't hear the steady pounding of another heart beat. I only heard myself, and the heavy pressure of silence. I didn't hear the wind now, either. I was alone. I held back tears at that thought. Eron was who knew where, Daray was somewhere in the forest, and now Xander was being chased. This dream was turning into my worst nightmare, and I'd had a few. I needed to stop thinking negatively, but in the situation I was in, that was the only way I could
think. So I decided to stop thinking. I focused on the sound of my footsteps. The sound of running. But, my mind strayed.
I needed to think of a way to help Xander. I couldn't just let him die, like I knew he would. After all the times he had saved me, I owed him something. But how could I save him? We were running in different directions, and I'd been running for at least ten minutes. Xander had a demon at his heels, so he'd be running much
faster. I couldn't think of how I could save him, but I knew I could try. I just had to plan... A noise jarred me back to reality. I was running, still. But I could hear another set of footsteps. They weren't frantic, like mine. They were hurried, like someone chasing someone else. I knew it was a human, but which
human was unknown. I started running faster, in case it was Daray. Then, I thought of something. What if it was Xander? Or Eron? What if I was running from them? I couldn't be sure, though.
The footsteps became louder, like they were getting closer. They probably were. I started thinking quickly, something I never did. It couldn't be Xander. I was too far away from the fork. At least, I thought so. And I didn't think it was Daray. He was heavier. So, it must be Eron, right? I wasn't sure, but I hoped it was. I missed him. Thinking about him brought day dreams, even though I might be in danger. I remembered the last time I had seen him, his blue-gray eyes flashing. He had been telling me to stay out of the forest, just like always. I remembered his voice, calling my name. Wait. He hadn't been calling my name. I closed my eyes for a second, to come back to Earth. Someone was calling my name. And it was a voice I would know anywhere. "Eron!" I cried, smiling at the thought of him with me. "Ella! Ella, my love!" he called. Apparently, he hadn't heard me. I cried louder, "Eron!" Then the footsteps stopped. Then, they started running, getting faster and faster, until Eron came, right next to me. "Ella," he said, in recognition.
"Eron. Oh, Eron!" I said, my knees buckling from under me. Tears formed at my eyes, in happiness and fear. "Ella. Ella, love, what's wrong?" he whispered into my ear, holding me. "There was something chasing me. And Xander was running, too. And then there was a fork in the road. And we went different ways. And, and..." I trailed off into sobs, soaking his shirt in tears. "Ssh. Ssh." he said, rubbing my back. I looked up at him, to see his expression. I saw fear, turning his eyes a hazy blue. And love, that was always there.I wondered what I looked like to him. I wasn't the prettiest girl, but I wasn't stupid enough to say I was plain. I was Ella, a girl with dreams no one could understand, except for him. Except for Eron. He murmured sweet nothings in my ear, trying to calm my hysterical sobs. And it worked. I quieted, but he held me still. I wasn't going to argue with that. I never got this
whenever I was with him. I was glad I had it, even though we could both die.
He started singing a song to me. I recognized the lyrics. Rangers, by A Fine Frenzy. One of my favorites. I hummed along to the tune, while he put me on my feet. He put his arm around me, making sure I didn't fall. I looked at him. "I'll be okay. I think." He smiled, letting go of me. I wasn't going to let that happen. I put my arm around his neck. My step wasn't as steady as I thought it would be. I took a swift glance at him. His chocolate brown hair, and sea eyes were perfection. At least, to me. I had no idea what anyone else would think of him.
Eron broke my train of thought. "Where are we going?" I thought about that for a second, and then gave him the honest answer. "I have no idea," I said, shrugging. He sighed. "Then why are we going this way?" "I was headed this way when I was running." "Ah." he almost whispered. Running. I had been running. That brought thoughts I did not want. One of them, being Xander. I hadn't saved him. Where was he? "Eron! Xander. We have to save Xander." I said, my voice shooting up octaves. "We can try, Ell. But I'm not sure we'll succeed." "We at least have to try. This wasn't his fight. I'm supposed to be the one being chased, not him!" I said hysterically. "Ella. Calm down. You don't deserve to be chased." he said, with a slight edge to his voice. I started laughing, an edge of hysteria in my voice. Eron looked confused. "What's so funny?" he wondered out loud. I couldn't answer him. I had no idea what I thought was funny. So I became quiet, focusing on walking.
I thought about the fact that I wasn't alone, and even better, Eron was with me. Wondering how I was so lucky, we walked in silence. I didn't talk. I knew my voice would probably
still sound hysterical. I looked ahead, to think of something besides Eron and my luck. I saw that it was getting sunny. The trees no longer gray. That had to be the most bizarre thing that had happened yet, and that was saying something. I looked at Eron, to see if he had noticed. He was smiling. A second ago, he had been frustrated. What was going on? One of my typical sudden thoughts came into play. I was the dreamer. This was the dream. I could change it, right? No. No, I couldn't. If I could, all of my dreams would be much
different. I had to stop thinking. I was freaking myself out. So I focused on sounds. On the sound of Eron and I's footsteps. On the birds. On the wind. On every sound I could hear.
Then, out of nowhere, I heard my name. In a scream. "Ella! Ella!" It had to be Xander! He needed help. I heard it again. "Ella! Ella!" It was agonizing, hearing my name. "Eron, we have to help him! That has to be Xander! He needs help!" I almost cried. "All right, Ell. Let's go." Eron said, taking my hand. We started running, and the cry became louder. We were so close. I could feel it! And then, the sound of my name became one long, continuous sound of.. agony.
I couldn't help it. I broke down, my knees falling from under me, tears already streaming down my face. I closed my eyes, while Eron knelt down, and held me. He whispered words I didn't hear, and I might have fallen asleep...
My eyes flew open. I held back a scream. Xander! I had to find him. I looked around, trying to figure out where I was, trying to find the endless cry. I didn't hear it. I wasn't in the forest anymore. My eyes adjusted. I was in my room. I saw my sweatshirt thrown over the back of the chair. I saw Realistic Dreams, my favorite book, next to my bed, where I had been reading it the night before. I was safe. But what was that sound? I looked around, trying to find it. My eyes fell on my alarm clock. It was the alarm, set for six twenty. The time I usually got up and ran. But I couldn't run today. Not this time. I started taking deep breathes, thinking of what day it was. Thursday. Today was Thursday. Which meant I had school. I got myself out of bed, my blood adrenaline spiked. I stepped lightly, careful not to wake my parents. I grabbed a towel, and stepped into the bathroom. I turned the hot water on, careful not to think about my dream. I was very strict with myself about keeping my dreams and reality separate. I stripped myself of my pajamas, stepping into the shower.
My breathing was calm, and I focused on washing my hair. After I was done with that, I turned the water off, stepping out of the shower. I wrapped myself up in the towel, heading towards my closet. I laughed at myself, the familiar and stupid question popping into my head; What was I going to wear today? I went over to my closet, opening the doors. I randomly grabbed a pair of skinny jeans and a shirt. I didn't really care what I wore today. I put on my jeans, buttoned my shirt. It was my red and black plaid one. I needed to find shoes. Then I would figure out something to do with my hair. I was surprised at myself. I was usually never this obsessed with my looks. I shrugged it off. I was a fifteen year old girl. It was bound to happen sometime. I was going to wear my black flats. At least, I thought so. Maybe my Converse.. no. Definitely my flats. I put on my shoes, then went into the bathroom to do my hair.
I looked at the mirror. Was I pretty? I didn't really think so, but everyone else seemed convinced otherwise. I sighed. Why did people care? I thought as I brushed my hair. Such stupid things to care about. I looked at the clock. 7:20. My bus would be here in fifteen minutes. I grabbed my phone and bag and headed downstairs. After pouring myself a glass of milk, I checked my phone. 1 New Message From: Alex
I opened it. Hey! You excited about tonight?
I smiled. Of course Alex would be excited. It was the first double date we had planned. Alex and Rob, me and Andrew. A feeling of guilt washed through me, and I didn't know why. I shook it off, replying. Of course I am. BTW: You and Rob are so cute together.
I pressed send as I heard my bus coming. I chugged the rest of my milk, sprinting out the door. I got outside just in time. I walked onto the bus, and sat down in my usual seat. Smiling, I knew today would be a good day. But the memory of my dream still haunted me...