The Tiger Within - novelonlinefull.com
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"The hunt. I am fine." Kyera replied and Kendrick shook his head.
"Too many primal emotions brings us to the edge of beating, and I don't know about you, little sister but I miss the Tigress within." Kendrick purred before shifting his form to the great deep orange tiger she knew him to be. His fur seemed almost black in the moonlight as he reached forward and stretched his back in the time honored traditional position of a cat.
Kyera thought for a long moment, then closed her eyes. It took several seconds for her body to respond to her request and melt. She felt herself reshape to the tiger upon the roof, guiding her body to a sitting position as she felt her muscles readjust to her form. Something about the anger seemed to dissipate as the pain set in. Her muscles screamed in protest as they stretched into place again.
A shifter's muscles were like rubber bands, if used often and kept maintained they stretched between forms without problems. The taunt muscles would add to the power of the tiger. However, when a rubber band is left in a drawer, untouched and without moisture a rubber band hardens to something else. Something fragile and unforgiving. A shifter's muscles could do the same thing, but while their muscles become more rigid their mind becomes more feral, causing a clash in forms. The mind would always win out in the end, and the pain of the body erases any control the person may have had. This total revision to the animalistic mentality is known as beasting.
"How bad is the pain?" Kendrick asked watching her acutely as he walked around her slowly, carefully positioning his paws on the roof. Kyera's eyes opened and met his.
"Not bad. It hasn't been long enough, nor am I emotional enough for my body to be unmanageable." Kyera replied honestly as she stood up and began carefully stretching her body.
"Let's go for a moonlight run. You could use some time out of the palace." Kendrick offered with a soft smile.
"Yes, but the guard…" Kyera pointed out and he shook his head.
"No. You and me. Nothing and no one else. You need some time to be a tiger, not a princess." Kendrick replied and led her to the edge of the roof. "The roofs are made of stone here, and coated in snow." He pointed out and a wicked playful smile appeared on Kyera's lips.
She looked at the roof just a little ways away and ran toward it. She leaped, her tiger body lengthening and purring as she used them. The baby snuggly nested in her stomach she had nothing to fear. A tiger mother often had more freedom than the human form. She landed lightly on the other roof and looked back to see Kendrick land beside her in an elegant arch. She could see the excitement in his eyes as she flashed him a grin and dashed off to the next jump.
She ran and he gave chase, across the rooftops, down alleyways and across the snow. The pair laughing and teasing each other as the pain and anger dissipated. There was no sense of pretense or need, it was just...them. they were free as they had been as children. The perfectly imperfect harmony of a brother and a sister. Kyera wore out first and with a past burst of energy ran and leaped into the snow-covered clearing, moonlight pouring down on her white fire. She blended beautifully into the snow. Even her silver streaks looked like shadows on the snow. She laid down, dropping into the snow to catch her breath. Kendrick landed near her, also a touch winded as he stood by her.
With more grace than she had bothered with, he laid down beside her. "Kyera, you know this isn't your fault." He said rather randomly and Kyera turned her head to look at him, the amount of human in those tiger eyes was a relief.
"I know. It is just so hard not to blame myself when it was my duty to keep them safe." Kyera replied softly and Kendrick sighed.
"No Little Sister, it wasn't. Your duty, above all else is to survive, as long as you breathe your people have hope. Somehow, some way after we died you forgot about that. You got so bogged down in protecting everyone you forgot what a Princess is." Kendrick chastised her gently as he lay looking down at his sister. Kyera took in what he was saying letting herself process.
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"I had to be both Prince and Princess for so long…" Kyera began and he chuckled.
"No, Kyera your lacking parts for that. A Princess without a sibling to help her rule is no longer a princess. She is a queen." He replied chuckling at her. There was a smile on his lips as he sat up. "That means you are the Hope and the Sword, but the thing is, that crown is heavy and sometimes good people die doing what is right. Mally, Cora, and Lazren were good people. Remember them as such."
Kyera felt the cold wind ruffle her fur as she watched the shadows form in the moonbeams. The figures dancing across the field. If she looked hard enough, she would see a Snake, a Wolf and a Panther shimmering in the moonlight near by, keeping watch over the living.