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Chapter Twenty

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Marcus insisted on taking my bag that I packed. I worried that I packed too much and that it would be too heavy for him. I forgot how strong he was, since he lifted it like it weighed nothing. He had his own bag as well, so it must have been easy for him. We started walking down the street, meeting Holly and Lyric at the rendezvous point. We all agreed on meeting at the dark forest near the Academy. That way, Marcus and I could shift in private. It also meant that we had to be extremely careful that we weren't caught.

He took my hand, squeezing it reassuringly. Marcus also wanted answers to questions of his own, probably similar to mine. He was also included in meeting their master. He also saw the wolf at the same time as me, but didn't have any reaction. That's how we both knew that there was something peculiar going on. For as long as I remembered, I had no family members that were shapeshifters. I didn't have any male siblings, but then again, it wouldn't surprise me. I probably could have half siblings from my father's side, but why would they come find me?

"Are you sure you want to do this?" he asked, looking at me. He knew that I was uncomfortable with going with Lyric and Holly, but they were taking me to answers. I looked at Marcus, taking his hand in mine. "I want to go. This could be the only way to get the answers I'm looking for." I explained. He had a pained expression on his face, like he was only going through with this because of me. "We only just met Holly and Lyric, or I did really. Are you sure we can trust them?" he asked, hesitant to continue. He did have a point.

We just met Lyric and Holly, and yet we're going to Dragonview with them. Even though we just met them, I felt like I could trust them. It was more of a gut feeling than anything. "Do you trust me?" I asked, looking at him. "Of course I do." he replied. "Trust me with this decision. If something happens, we can turn around and leave." I explained, smiling at him. I was hoping that he would not want to turn around and stay back. I could tell that he was thinking about it. If he wasn't going to go, I was leaving without him. It was something that I didn't want to do, but I needed these answers.

He looked at me and sighed. I was waiting for him to hand me my back and start walking back home. "If you can trust them, then I trust them too." he grinned. I felt myself smile as I hugged him. "I don't want to do this without you." I whispered. He grabbed my hand and held it in his, as we continued to walk. "How long are we able to stay shifted for?" I asked, curious. "I could last three hours before I had to un-shift." he explained. "That is good, but we'll have to take breaks." I said, knowing that the trip would take hours or possibly days. "Dragonview can't be too far from Springwell." he replied.

First, I thought about how far Dragonview could be from Springwell. If it wasn't that far, then we might not have to shift at all. Then, I thought about how Lyric and Holly got here. As we knew, they were shape-shifters. It would have been faster for them to get here since they could become a wolf. "I meant to ask you. Did you pack clothes for adult self?" he asked. I had to think of what I packed. I knew I packed clothes for myself as a teenager, but I was unsure if I brought clothes for shifting. "I guess I'll find out when we get there." I replied, thinking about it.

After a long walk, we made it to the meeting spot and Lyric and Holly were waiting for us. I started to think that we were later than we expected. Lyric waved to us, while Holly stood there with her arms crossed. She appeared to be mad, but it was hard to tell from where we were. From how she stood, we must have been later than expected. Marcus and I looked at each other and shrugged. "She could just be playing around with us." he said, looking worried. "Well, we're prepared anyway." I replied, looking at Holly. We walked quicker and finally reached Holly and Lyric.

"You guys took long enough." said Holly, anger slowly appearing on her face. "Holly, calm down. They probably had to take care of something first." replied Lyric, who was actually smiling. Holly seemed like she didn't want to relax, but she did what her brother told her. "We should plan out what we're going to do on the way to Dragonview." she said. "Are we shifting for this entire trip?" asked Marcus. Holly looked at him and smiled. "Yes, we will be shifting. Why do you ask?" she asked. "Breanna and I can only shift for a few hours at a time. If we go any longer than that, our bodies will change back by itself." he explained.

Holly and Lyric shared a worried glance, but Lyric turned to us. "It will take us a couple of days to get to Dragonview. If we can get to our checkpoints, as we call it, by the specific time, we won't need to worry about that." explained Lyric. "Is there anything else we should know?" I asked. He looked at his sister and nodded his head. "Nothing that we can think of. If you need privacy to shift, Holly and I can go behind some clustered trees." he said.

Marcus and I walked into the forest and then went our separate ways. We wanted to give each other some privacy as well for shifting. I checked inside my bag and saw that I had comfortable clothes for my adult self for when we started our long journey. I stripped out of my clothes, except for my bra and underwear, and felt myself beginning to shift. I didn't want to be my mother again because I didn't want to run into Mr. Brennigan. He gave me the creeps when I was my mother.

I felt my arms getting longer, hearing the cracking of bones. I wanted to be taller, so I made sure I shifted into a tall adult. My long brown hair was cut and just at my shoulders. My skin became slightly tanned as I shifted. Even though I had nothing to worry about, I wanted to be unrecognized when I left. That was when I felt the sharp pain as the bones in my face was being moved. I held back loud screams as the pain intensified. The sound of cracking and shifting were gross, but bearable. Finally, the pain subsided and I knew then that I had a new face. I took out a mirror that was in my bag and held it out at myself. From how I looked, I could have been a twenty-two year old female from California, who spent a lot of time in the sun. My hair was not brown, but a dirty blonde. My nose was pierced, which actually seemed pretty on my face. I wonder if I could actually do this to my actual nose. I changed into a pair of gym pants and a light shirt, wearing a light sweater.

I hardly recognized Marcus when I stepped out of the woods. His hair was blonde as well, but more of a platinum blonde. It suited him nicely if my opinion was valid. He seemed to be twenty-six, but I could have been mistaken. From what I could see, it seemed like he had more muscles than he was as a teenager. He could have been a bodybuilder. He turned around and saw me, frozen in shock. "Close your mouth or you'll be eating flies." I joked, pushing his chin up. "We only have three hours of you two being shifted, so let's not waste them." said Holly.

I watched as Holly and Lyric kneeled onto the ground. This was going to be an interesting shift to see. The first thing I heard was their scream. It was almost painful to watch. I could see each and every bone in their body break as they started to shift. Marcus had to hold my arm just to keep me from going closer. Lyric looked up and I saw his eyes change to yellow. Then, the next thing I knew, there were two silver-grey wolves in front of me. They were the same color as the bigger wolf was. They nudged their head towards northwest and started to walk. "Time to start our travels." I said. We started to follow them, hoping that Dragonview had the answers we were looking for.

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