Here is my Story, dont forget to review!

The black carriage rolled slowly along the road in the gray drizzle, the whole world was silent, listening to the raised voices coming from the interior of the carriage.

Suddenly the two black horses pulling it stopped and reared. The door opened and out jumped a small figure shrouded in black. She ran across the road and disappeared into the woods, not heeding the distraught cries of the tall thin woman, likewise dressed in black, who leaped out of the carriage after her.

A tall man stepped out of the carriage, he called out, his voice muffled by the soft pattering rain. The servant reined in the horses and they sat there, while the drizzle turned to rain and the mud turned to slush.

When the rain began falling in sheets and the thunder began to boom, the man finally stepped into the carriage with a shake of his head and they slowly moved off down the road.

Two unseen eyes watched the departure of the carriage before slowly turning away to meet a second pair of golden eyes. The girl stretched out a delicate hand to the wolf who responded by throwing back his head and howling a long, elated howl to the moon whose light shone brightly on his silver and black fur.

When the howl finally tapered off, the wolf stood and nudged the shivering figure lightly, she got up and climbed onto the wolf's back, and then together they galloped off into the stormy night.

Later on that night, a man dressed all in black sat on his velvet chair with his face buried in his hands, wondering what had become of his daughter. His graying hair and once youthful face showed the recent ravages of age and stress.

His wife was dead. His daughter was gone. The whistling wind and sparks of lightning explained without words exactly how he felt. And now by order of the King he must appear in court in two weeks time, he must leave immediately.

Life was not going well.

Chapter 1

The stony wall dug uncomfortably into Aly's back as she sighed. Wolf looked at her patronizingly. "Tired already?" he bared his teeth in an infuriating grin.

"Give me a break" she mumbled, full of happiness despite her grumpy attitude.

"There is some of the food you left last time still at the back of the cave" he threw back over his shoulder from the entrance of the cave." and some more suitable clothes." He gave a wolf laugh that sounded somewhat like a threatening growl and pranced lightly out of the cave, dodging the rock Aly threw at him with ease.

"I'm going hunting, don't leave the cave"

"As if I would" she replied to no one. Climbing to her feet she walked to the back of the cave and tipped the contents of the bag she found on the ground. She pulled her black dress off, over her head before rummaging around to find the crumpled clothes she had left there last time.

A few seconds later, dressed in comfortable breeches, a shirt and a vest, she plonked herself down on the ground and yanked the pin that was holding her hair in an uncomfortably tight bun. With that done and feeling good, she began feasting on what remained of that food left there a month ago on one of her excursions.

It was mostly dried jerky, but there was also some dried fruit that she relished. She had spent the last month in dry, arid Saduhe and had been forced to fast in mourning for her mother. A month of bread, water and not much else. Her already slim frame was showing the consequences.

"Ah, mother." She sighed. Aly had never known her mother well, Sophia of Toren had been sent away to the Capital, Galabrostious, when her daughter was very young, she had been sick with an illness the doctors pronounced incurable. She had stayed in the capital though, Aly's father had gone almost mad with grief and had spent much of the fiefdom's money on searching for a cure.

All for nothing, apparently. The last time Aly saw her mother alive was about a year ago by Sophia's request. She had not been the laughing, vibrant mother Aly remembered from her childhood. Rather more of a wasted woman who's eyes rang with a longing for something she could never have. Sophia had not said much and most of her words did not make sense, but Aly held them close to her heart, even now when they were blurred in her memory.

Aly sighed again and scrunched up her dress for a pillow. Leaning back she closed her eyes and found a picture of her mother. Of the beautiful woman who used to sing songs and laugh all hours of the day. Aly drifted to sleep…


The day dawned beautifully bright and Wolf had still not come back from his hunting. Aly stretched and smiled, sadness forgotten and wiped tear streaks off her face with careful blankness. She had feared the day would be stormy and cold like last night, but it was not the case.

And forgetting what she had said to Wolf the night before, she walked to the front of the cave and climbed up and over the tumble of rocks that hid its entrance. Skidding down the gravely stones on her bare heels.

She would head to her house and get supplies. She would show her father. She would never be sent away! She loved it here! Aly tossed her rumpled hair back with pride. She hadn't decided what to do yet but her heart was yearning for adventure.

As she began to walk her thoughts wandered casually and she thought of her joy at seeing dear Wolf again and further back in memories, the shock she had felt when first meeting him that she could talk to him. In her mind.

Many years ago he had been caught on the Hunt and caged for all to see because of his tremendous size.

Aly had been young then, only eight, and looking for something to take up the time that she had freed by sneaking out of her etiquette lessons. She had seen Wolf and had almost had a heart attack when she heard the angry things he was yelling in his head as he paced his cage growling. In her shock she had replied somehow and for a moment they just stared at each other before a conversation was struck up.

It wasn't long before Aly, as a child who had no sense of safety, freed Wolf and he taught her to communicate with other

It had been a huge scandal because no one could figure out how he had escaped. The cage had still been locked and the door was still on its hinges. One of the Lords who had been on the hunt that had caught him said he was a ghost wolf and that they would pay the price for capturing him, nobody believed him.

Aly loved Wolf and she escaped many more of her lessons just to run with him. She also taught him how to avoid the hunters by covering his tracks and hiding the signs of his kills.

They had found the cave when Aly was supposedly meant to be at her dress fittings, but since she hated dresses she saw no point in staying to be fitted with them. So together they had explored the rocky hill and found the cave. It was perfect because it was hidden by the debris of a recent land fall and showed no sign of human activity.

So Wolf had made this his home and Aly had made it her hideout despite its closeness to the Castle (only ten minutes walk, less on a horse) and she had had many adventures in and around the cave. No one had ever found where she disappeared to and she didn't think anyone ever would.

Keeping to the trees, Aly scanned the area around the Castle of Toren.

Her home.

The gardens looked empty but Aly wouldn't count on it, there was always servants hanging around to fix the least of problems that might appear. So the stables were her only chance of getting into the Castle without raising the alarm. The servant who found the missing girl would be heavily rewarded.

The stable boys were always aware of who came in and out of the stables and had helped her in many of her escapades. They were sympathetic of all her dress fittings, etiquette classes and lessons about behaving at court. They thought she was a good sport for a Noble... and a Girl.

So Aly made the dash across the garden and flattened herself against the back wall of the stables glancing inside and seeing that it was empty, she wriggled through the small window and into a musty stall that hadn't been used for a long time.

She gave a low whistle and called out.


An adolescent head slipped around the door and winked at her.

"Up to your old tricks again Aly, making the old man worry" he said with mock reproach.

"Now what would you be talking about, young master Conor, I'm still as innocent as ever"

"About as innocent as a pickpocket"

"Now the way I see it …." She cut off as she saw his completely exasperated look.

He sighed. "What do you want, you know your father will probably behead me if he ever finds out I found the missing girl and didn't tell him."

"I trust you to keep silent or I would have had you kicked out of the stables years ago"

"So that's what happened to James I always wondered…" he trailed off as if he was deep in thought.

"Yes, yes I need to get to my room and-"

"You also need travel supplies for a few days, saddles blankets and some extra breeches." He finished for her.

"Thank you, love you, couldn't do without you." She chanted as she slipped past him patting him on the back "I'll be back soon."

"Please don't be" he muttered under his breath.

"Was that a challenge I heard?"

Conor grimaced; though he had been the one to teach Aly how to fight she had shown rare skill and could beat him easily. He opened his mouth to call back before realizing that he had already left.

He sighed and went to search for the things she would need in the store room.

Aly clambered up the ivy; it was such an unoriginal way to get into her room, in all the books she had read heroines and heroes climbed up or down the ivy to escaped or to meet their forbidden love. Either this or they had a secret passage way in their rooms, but no matter how hard or long Aly had looked she had never found such a passage in the castle so she must make do with the horribly unoriginal ivy escape.

She reached the window and levered it open with a long metal rod kept up there especially for those purposes. The inside of her room should have smelled musty from the many weeks she had been at the Mourning City but her servants were horribly efficient and not a speck of dust was left.

She found the locked chest where she kept her valuables and her plain clothes, kept for the exact reason that they showed no hint of her Nobility.

She slipped her hand into the hiding place her key was kept and opened the chest. Inside there was a pitifully little amount of objects.

Her valuables consisted of a small stone sculpture of a horse rearing amidst roaring flames, this had been given to her by her mother and had beautiful detail Aly had always wondered why the look on the horse's face was not of pain as the flames might suggest, but of triumphant joy. Her mother had always avoided questions on the fact and now she would never know.

The rest of her valuables were mainly jewelry given to her by different people, her mother, her father, a boy she had liked many years ago as a child and people like that.

She gently pulled her breeches out from underneath them and as she did a piece caught her eye, it was a bracelet made of silver, copper and gold wire intertwined and off it hung 5 small pieces of stone carved into mysterious shapes. She remembered her mother showing them to her and telling her their names: the emerald stone was carved into the shape of the sea serpent, the ruby was the phoenix, the topaz was the griffin, the onyx was the dragons and the marble was the unicorn.

A wave of sadness washed over her and she clenched her hand around the bracelet before slipping it onto her arm and reaching for her clothes again but the movement of the bracelet annoyed her so she pushed it all the way up her arm till it sat almost at her shoulder; it was tight but not too tight and she trusted it would not fall down.

She grabbed her clothes then slipped back down the ivy and back into the stables Conor was waiting for her in her pony's stall, she wasn't saddled as Aly liked to ride bare back but she had saddle bags slug across her back.

Aly slipped into the stall and rubbed her pony Ranna's head, she was a good strong pony and had carried her well all Aly's life.

"How are you" she asked rubbing her nose against Ranna's.

"I'm well, you know I am, if I wasn't I would have told you" she replied. "Now are we going I haven't been ridden in a while"

"Yes we're going"

She turned back to Conor to find he was giving her a strange look.

"What?" she said annoyed by that look.

"You have the best understanding of animals that I've ever seen and they seem to understand you too." His eyebrows were furrowed with true confusion.

"I don't know why, it's just how I am"

"Yes of course, now, do you know when you will be back?" He asked though his eyes showed that he was still pondering.

"The less you know the less you tell" Aly replied cheerily, leaping on to Ranna and leading her out of the stall.

"Goodbye and thank you, I owe you one"

"I'll hold you to that"

"Of course" Aly laughed and galloped quickly out of the courtyard, if she was lucky no one would have seen her if not the servants knew and liked her so they probably wouldn't tell her father anyway.