Chapter Five

Rayne woke up to the sound of rain and pulled the covers back over her head. Orion was curled up next to her head, a big ball of shocking orange fur, and she smiled when he opened his eyes and let out a soft mew. As she lay there mulling over the events of last night, instinct told her that she knew those eyes. Her dreams, she knew, were telling her something; something she knew was important. Suddenly lightning flashed, followed by a loud boom of thunder. Rayne sat up as did Orion, fur puffed and eyes wide.

"It's okay boy, only a thunder and lightning storm," Rayne soothed, smoothing his fur. She got up and made a fire in the fireplace, and soon the little cabin was filled with light and warmth. She fixed Orion's breakfast and was eating her own when lightning flashed again, followed by a clap of thunder that shook the house and made her wince. Suddenly the door banged open and with a howl, Orion ran out into the storm. Rayne jumped up with a cry and ran to the door.

"ORION!" she yelled, but the wind whipped the words from her mouth and blew them away. Taking a deep breath and ignoring the small pang of fear in her mind, Rayne darted out into the storm.
The lightning lit up the sky, illuminating his face and the eagerness that shone in his eyes. He could not have wished for a better chance, and whispered a spell. He instantly appeared in her kitchen, and he explored every corner before stepping into her room. He felt the energy immediately push against him as if it sensed the shadow over him. He walked over to her bed and ran his hand over it. He stopped at her pillow and grinned; so the nightmares were bothering her more often. That was good; he wanted them to bother her so much that she made a mistake. Then his eyes landed on her closet, and felt the insistent pull of power. He walked over and opened the doors, only to be greeted with a sudden blaze of intense golden light. Snarling a curse, he quickly shut the doors and tried to blink away the spots that swam across his vision. There was no way he would be able to get near that weapon; it was meant to kill those like him.

"So the sisters gave them to you after all," he whispered, and then heard Nightshade enter the cabin. The big wolf walked into the bedroom, and his cunning eyes took in his companions shaken continuance, but said nothing. Knowing the wolf could see that something was up, he continued his search until he was satisfied she had no other items that would suddenly blind him and left the cottage, shutting the door behind that was his first mistake. Kal was awakened by the crash of thunder that shook the house, and smiled. Today he would be able to relax and enjoy doing nothing. Mikal and Aranel were finally getting along, and Kal thanked the nine gods for that. He only hoped the peace would last until college started up and he'd be out of the house.
Stretching his muscles, Kal decided to head down to the kitchen and make breakfast. He was in the middle of cooking some eggs when he heard knocking on the front door.

"Who in the nine hells would be out in this weather?" he muttered as he went to the door. He opened it and was greeted by a very wet and shivering Rayne. He reached out and pulled her into the house, yelling for Mikal to get him a blanket.

"Rayne, what on earth were you doing out in that?" he asked as he led her - now shivering violently - into the living room where the fire blazed. Mikal came downstairs with a thick blanket, which Kal took and wrapped around Rayne. He shook his head when Mikal went to speak, and shot him a warning glance. Mikal nodded and left the room. Kal turned back to Rayne and made her sit by the fire. Her lip quivered and she looked ready to burst into tears.

" away. I didn't think of the went after...him. It started raining harder and I was too..far away from my I ," she explained, teeth chattering.

"You went out into this gods-awful storm to look for Orion?" Kal repeated incredulously, and then drew her into his arms as she started to cry. He rested his head atop hers and just let her cry. He felt her sigh a few minutes later, and she blushed as he wiped the tears away.

"I'm sorry," she whispered, and Kal looked at her, puzzlement in his eyes.

"Whatever for?" he asked, and Rayne lowered her eyes.

"For barging in on you like that and getting so upset over Orion." she trailed off when Kal put a finger on her lips, silencing her. He brought his hand up to cup her face and her honey eyes flew up to lock on his own bright ones.

"Don't be" he whispered softly, and her blush deepened. He leaned closer and was about to kiss her when suddenly a wet orange arrow shot into the room and onto Rayne's lap, making them both jerk back in surprise. Rayne let out a cry and scooped Orion into her arms, managing to laugh, cry, and scold the cat all at the same time. Kal scowled, and Orion turned his head to gaze at him; Kal swore the cat was grinning, no doubt pleased with his well timed entrance. His rumbling purrs filled the living room as he rested in Rayne's lap, his fur starting to puff out as it dried. Mikal came in then, and laughed when he saw Orion.

"I've some hot chocolate sitting out there, ready for us if you want any. I also have some cat food for Orion and your eggs are ready Kal," he said, and Kal nodded.

"Thanks Mikal." He offered his hand to Rayne and she accepted, Orion protesting loudly as he was taken away from the two sources of warmth; Rayne's lap and the fire. Rayne laughed and put the blanket down on the floor in front of the fire and Orion curled up in a ball and closed his eyes. His job had just begun.