Joined: 29 Jun 2012
|Posted: Fri Oct 26, 2012 2:21 pm Post subject: Winter, part eleven
|“It's been a while, Winter.” Mike said, sliding her her favorite shot: Gordon's mint flavored gin. Winter caught it faster than he could watch with his eyes- which always amazed him. Winter touched the small shot glass to her lips and swallowed it- no shudder, no close of her eyes, and no visible throat movement when she swallowed.
Mike huffed and shook his head, turning to shine something on the bar. “Tell me what's wrong.” Mike said, already having locked the front door. Half of the already dim lights were switched off, the bar now very dim as Winter sat in the far corner, her white fur glowing under the single light than shone on her.
“Nothing's wrong.” Winter said, knocking on the bar three times to let Mike know she needed another. “Mind if I smoke?” Winter asked, reaching in her jacket pocket. “Of course not.” Mike growled as he polished a brass fixture behind the bar. Winter pulled out a cigarette and held it out of the end of her muzzle, as she lit it with a butane windproof lighter. Windproof, hell. She could blow the flame out with just her breath.
“Don't screw me around, wolf. Tell me what's up. It's just you and me here now. Ain't nobody else around.” Mike growled, turning to glance at Winter, who looked away, her eyes closed, as she sighed. Mike knew immediately what it was. “Winter...” Mike began to say, but stopped.
“Don't push me, Mike.” Winter said, casting him a cold, yellow eyed stare. Winter regretted saying that. Mike was just about her only friend in Manhattan. Mike had hidden her, gotten her the drugs she needed to pay off contacts... Gotten her the weapons she needed. If he wasn't paid so well, she'd swear he had a crush on her.
“Some day you are going to have to tell me the truth, Winter the white wolf.” Mike said, shaking his head again. “No, I won't.” Winter said, looking at him, emotions crashing against emotions as she looked at her only friend, stocking his bar back up.
Mike looked back at her, the coldness in her eyes causing her hackles to stand up. “I know more than you can imagine about you, Winter. It would be nice to hear it from your mouth and not from some sleazy 'source'.” Mike said, pointing at her as Winter felt convicted, her hackles slowly laying back down- but not all the way...
Winter breathed in heavy, and let it out slowly. “You know you're my only friend...” Winter said, looking at Mike, him truly the only person she could even remotely consider her friend. “I know, Winter.” Mike said, cleaning the streaks off of a glass and hanging it back up behind the bar.
“So you know there are things I can't ever tell you. For your sake...” Winter said, hating to say that to her only human friend whom she could call on. “Yeah.” Mike said spitefully. “I know.” As he slammed a glass in it's wooden holder. Mike marched over to winter and grabbed her muzzle, much the same way the man in the garden store had.
“You know, you arrogant Naakaanee, one day you are going to have to tell someone everything you have done. And on that day, you better hope they understand, because if they don't, you will die all alone.” Mike said, whipping Winter's muzzle to the right as the tears filled her eyes.
She had never felt so humiliated in her life, though the tears did not come like she had feared, and the anger never really even registered in her soul. Winter was cornered, like a wild animal. However, she wasn't physically boxed in. her walls were in her mind as she stared at Mike, confused, and more than a little afraid, her self- preservation instinct coming to life as she watched him work behind that polished Oak bar.
“Mike, I'm sorry...” Winter said, quickly wiping a single tear from her eye so that he never saw it. She was sorry she could not tell him what he wanted to know, and sorry that his stupidity was asking her to do so. “I care for you, Mike.” Winter said. “I know.” Mike said, looking back at her.
Winter looked away, squeezing her eyes closed, looking away as a tear fell from her eye. The emptiness in her soul nagged at her, telling her she would die alone, cold, and afraid. Abandoned. Rejected. Alone.
But it was her fate. It was always her fate. She knew it... Shunned by her human masters, and shunned by her own people for serving her human masters, Winter was an outcast of outcasts. She had no home, no people, only a cold government to bring results to, to try to undermine a superpower that had rebuilt itself after its collapse.
“Your name fits you.” Mike said, holding a glass up to the light, polishing it until there were no more streaks. “What do you mean...” Winter said, immediately regretting saying that, as she knew she had walked right into his trap. “Your heart is as cold as the winter.” Mike said, looking at her, his glance cutting through her like an ice cold razor blade.
He was right. And Winter hated that fact. Winter slammed the shot glass down, her face looking like she was going to leap over that bar and tear Mike a new one- but he was not afraid. The pain he felt in her heart was something he ached to help. He wanted so bad to see her smile, to see the light in her eyes match the smile on her face. One way, or another, he was going to see it. One way, or another. He hoped to one day see her wed to a Naakaanee who could understand her, who could love her. To see the beauty of the bright smile on her gentle face, the glow in her eyes matching that beauty perfectly, like he knew she was capable of. It was a picture he carried in his mind that cut him whenever he would see her, operating alone, her face cold, her mind in some sort of conflict.
As Winter walked to the door of the corner street bar, “Lobo's Grill” as Mike called it, she tossed a twenty on the worn oak bar, her lips quivering as she almost snarled at Mike, Winter unlocking the door and kicking it open as she burst out into the frigid cold New York winter's night.