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I look around to see small animals surrounding me. Bunnies, cats, dogs, sparrows, and small animals around me. Many of them are looking up at me with curiosity. None of them, however, attempt to make a move towards me. Other than the animals, I’m also surrounded by the green scenery.

“Come,” a voice says.

My eyes widen at how familiar that voice sounds.

It sounds like –

“Come, master,” the voice that sounds like mine says again.

I gulp and walk forward. All the prey guardian animals move out of my way. I walk until I see that predatory animals are close to me.

Predatory animals like cheetahs, panthers, bears…

I stop in my tracks. Does this mean I’m going to get a predatory guardian animal? Then I can watch over hunters and Nate!

“I’m not a predatory, master,” she tells me. The excitement wears off immediately.

Is my guardian animal rare?

“Come,” she repeats.

Obeying, I walk forward until the greenery is no longer surrounding me. It looks like I’m in hell instead, with dark clouds hovering above me and lightning struck every now and then.

Somehow, I don’t feel afraid.

In front of me is a huge gate that blocks me from moving forward. There are two gargoyles on the gates. Both gargoyles turn their head towards me, making me flinch in surprise. Both of them are identical with little horns on their heads and red eyes that show danger.

“Melanie Meridian,” the two gargoyles say in synchronization.

I swallow the lump in my throat and nod mutely.

“Enter,” one says.

“Welcome to Rare Nest, Melanie Meridian,” the other says.

On cue, the scary gate creaks open. I see all kinds of huge rare animals. Whatever you think is myth is right before my eyes. I see dragons, Cerberus, hellhounds, hydra, and lots more.

“You’re closer, master,” the voice says excitedly.

I look around, hoping to see my guardian animal anywhere. Instead, the mythical creatures ignore me, unlike the prey guardian animals.

How rude!

“Turn around, master,” she says softly, as if she’s afraid to be rejected.

As request, I turn around to see a humongous red snake with fire at the end of its tail staring back at me. Its red eye bore into mine.

“I am your guardian animal, master. Please accept me,” the voice that sounds like mine says in my head pleadingly.

The snake stares at me, waiting for my decision.

She should know that I can never reject her. She may not be what I expect, but I certainly would accept her.

“I accept you,” I say.

It almost as if my guardian animal is smiling.

No matter what, my guardian animal is worth it eventhough it is a mythical creature.

That’s when the pain comes. It feels like the insides of my body is twisting and turning painfully. It is so horrible. Most of the pain comes from my right hand. 

"I'm sorry," my guardian animal apologizes. Without warning, she coil before springing towards me with full force. Instead of knocking me down to the ground, she goes through me. 

More specifically, into my right arm. 

The pain increases and I can't take it anymore. I grit my teeth and close my eyes, trying to contain the scream that's threatening to come out. 

"Melanie! Open your eyes!" a very far away voice says. 

How? The burning sensation is still there. 

"I know it's painful, but you have to do it. The pain will go, I promise," Bibiana says. 

Gathering my courage, I peel my eyes open. I scream when the pain worsens. A huge part of me is concentrating on dulling the pain with no such luck. Bibiana's worried face come into my view. 

"Melanie, take deep breaths," she advises, breathing in and out as if demonstrating. 

I match my breathing with hers, which works. The burning has lowered until my body feels numb. I want to move so badly, but I can't seem to control any parts of my body. 

"It must be a very rare and dangerous animal if you had to go through that sort of pain," Bibiana mumbles to herself before concentrating fully on me. "Do you think you can sit up?"

When she says this, I feel energized. It is as if I didn't feel any pain only seconds ago! 

"Yes," I say without a croak. I sit up immediately, without any pain. What just happened? 

Bibiana looks at my side with wide eyes. 

"What?" I question.

"Look at your arm," she says. Compiling her order, I look at my right arm to see a tattoo of a snake. It's looks a little like Nero's, except that mine has fangs showing close to my shoulder and fire at the end of it's tail that is close to my wrist. 

"Your guardian animal is an Aztec myth - a Xuihcoatl!" Bibiana informs. 

A what now?

Author's Note

So what do you think? Nothing like what you expect, huh? If you have no idea what it looks like, it is by the side! Oh, and please do not complain about how short it is! I know it is and I'm writing this update on the spot after doing some research on it! I don't want a repeat of the flute accident! I have a life to, you know! Sorry, but I'm feeling really stressed lately and you PMing me about how boring or short the updates are getting on my nerve!





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