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    Yeoldebard
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental. Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 

Brothers - 2. Chapter 2

DEVYN

 

His body fell onto the bed, landing in a mix of skin and fur. Devyn let out a growl, shoving his snout under his pillows. He didn't need Marin's class. A bunch of faelaera sitting around meditating in human form. It was a waste of time. But his mom didn't seem to understand that.

Of course, growling at Jason hadn't helped his case at all. His parents always asked for someone to pass food at the table, and Devyn wasn't used to people reaching in the direction of his plate. It wasn't Jason's fault; Devyn had just been surprised by the action. He hadn't slipped up like that in years. The wolf whined quietly in shame.

Someone knocked on the door. Jason. He could smell the neko's musky scent, an odour that soothed him slightly. Jumping off his bed, the wolf went to the door, his paw flipping a small lever to open the door.

Jason held up a ball as the door opened, tossing it between his hands uncertainly. His lips moved, but Devyn's eyes were stuck on the ball in his hands. Did he want to play with the wolf? Devyn's head turned slightly, his tail wagging slowly.

The neko motioned toward the window, a questioning look on his face. Silently, Devyn walked past him, brushing against Jason's leg. He could feel the neko following him, and Devyn led his new brother out into the back yard, before staring pointedly at the small ball in his hands.

Smiling, Jason drew back his arm and hurled the ball toward a fence. The wolf raced after it, paws throwing up small clumps of grass. Lunging, Devyn caught the ball in his mouth, turning back toward Jason.

A piercing whistle startled him, Devyn nearly dropping the ball. That had come from Jason? He didn't realize the neko could whistle like that... or at all. Trotting back to Jason, Devyn let the ball fall out of his mouth, the neko kneeling to pick it up. His scent filled the wolf, Devyn inhaling the sweet smell deeply.

The ball flew again, Devyn whirling around to chase it down. His body soared through the air, teeth snapping shut around the ball triumphantly. Jason clapped as he ran back, and Devyn's tail wagged. It was a good catch, one he didn't always make. Not that he got much practice. Margaret didn't like him playing like a dog, as she called it.

His ears picked up the sound of a car pulling into their driveway, the wind blowing the smell of exhaust toward them. Pricking up his ears, Devyn listened to the door open and close, a familiar scent on the wind.

Dropping the ball, Devyn raced around the side of the house, leaping over a fence. Less than a minute later, he was standing over his father, licking his face vigorously.

"Blech... Devyn! Off!"

"Devyn! Get off your father!" Margaret called from the front door.

Whining softly, the wolf licked the man one more time before jumping away. He bowed playfully as Richard stood, the human scratching Devyn's head with a small smile.

"You have to learn how to greet people properly buddy."

Snorting, Devyn saw Jason standing near the corner of the house, uncertainty washing off the neko in waves. He took Richard's hand in his mouth, tugging his father toward Jason.

"I'm coming... Oh, hey Jason. Why are you hiding over here?"

Jason shrugged, tossing the ball back and forth. Devyn's eyes followed the ball, his tail wagging.

Richard held up a hand, Jason giving him the ball. The man bounced it off the side of the house, Devyn jumping after it. The wolf's shoulder hit the wall, Richard and Jason both chuckling as Devyn shrugged it off.

"Sorry I wasn't there to get you today. I tried to make it," Richard said.

Jason shrugged in response as Margaret approached. The woman sighed at the sight of Devyn playing with the ball, but the wolf ignored her pointed looks.

"You're home early," Margaret said.

"I wanted to be here for Jason," Richard replied. "And I decided I would rather not be on the road for a fourth night. There's something to be said for a warm bed with the one you love beside you."

"Aw..."

Margaret embraced her husband, kissing him tenderly.

"Are you hungry? There's some neko left over from lunch."

"I'm always hungry."

"Well let's get you some food then."

They headed inside, Margaret stopping Devyn before he could step through the door.

"Leave the ball."

Devyn growled quietly, and Margaret glared at him, maintaining eye contact.

"Leave it," she repeated firmly.

He dropped the ball, breaking eye contact as he did. It had been a while since he had clashed with his mother like this. No good would come from prolonging the argument. The wolf pushed past Margaret, immediately heading to his room. He wanted to give his father a hug. It was about the only thing his human form was good for.

 

JASON

 

'Can I go with you?'

Margaret frowned at Jason, a thoughtful look. He hoped. It wouldn't be the first time he had mistaken a look though.

"It's a full moon tonight. There's going to be a lot of wolves out, and a neko running might not... translate well," she said diplomatically.

'They'll try to eat me.'

"Not eat, but they might chase you. Maybe you can run with us in a couple nights, after the full moon."

Richard looked up from his seat on the couch, a game of football on the TV.

"We'll have some fun of our own," he said. "Hey Devyn! Time to take your medicine!"

The wolf leapt down the stairs, sliding across the floor as he landed. He tumbled to the ground, Jason laughing silently at the sight. Devyn sneezed as he stood up, and trotted toward his mother.

Margaret poured a green vial into a bowl and set it on the ground. Devyn lapped the liquid up, grimacing at the taste. Jason didn't realise he had to take potions for the wolf. There had been a young elf at the orphanage who had taken wolf potions. He had been another one of the outcasts, but Jason had never gotten to know him before he had been adopted by a family of werewolves.

"Jason, can you wash the bowl when Devyn is done? He'll be stuck as a wolf for the next couple of days."

Jason nodded. Margaret headed through a door, and he heard the crunching of someone shifting forms. The door opened, a large red wolf pushing her way through. Devyn huffed at Jason, his bowl in his teeth. Jason took the bowl and carried it to the sink as a knock sounded at the door.

He heard the door open, Richard letting in a trio of wolves and a calico neko.

"Hey guys," the man smiled, petting a brindle wolf.

Jason watched the calico neko out of the corner of his eye as he washed the bowl. He seemed nervous, glancing at Jason every few seconds. Even the brindle wolf seemed to be watching Jason, an unnerving action for the neko.

"Hey Jason, come meet our friends," Richard called.

The neko turned off the sink and stepped out of the kitchen, his ears flicking nervously.

"Jason, this is Lysander, Jordan, Damian, and Dylan. Guys, this is our new son, Jason."

The white wolf approached the neko, sniffing loudly. Devyn approached from the side, Lysander backing off respectfully. The whole scene left Jason confused. They didn't act like people or cats. Was Devyn trying to protect him? No, that didn't make sense. The wolf wasn't threatening him.

"Hi," the other neko said, holding out his hand.

Jason shook it, mouthing hello to him.

"Jason is mute," Richard explained.

Dylan's eyes widened in shock.

"Oh."

Margaret let out a quiet woof and Richard ran a hand over her head.

"Okay, be safe everyone," he said.

The wolves left the house, Devyn racing ahead of them. Jason smiled at the young wolf's exuberance, watching Lysander nip at his heels before the door closed.

"Alright you two, I saw those looks. Now, I'm not sure what they were about, but I will not tolerate fighting," Richard said sternly, looking between the two nekos. "If either of you want to talk about it, I'm all ears. If not, then keep it to yourselves."

Jason nodded his understanding, Dylan agreeing quietly.

"It's a neko thing," the calico neko said.

Jason shrugged. He had no idea what Dylan meant. Walking back into the kitchen, he finished washing the dishes, setting them aside to dry. The neko returned to where Dylan and Richard sat watching the football game. He tapped his foot, Richard looking up. The neko motioned toward the stairs with his head, Richard looking confused for a moment.

"Oh, you're heading upstairs. Don't you want to watch football with me and Dylan?"

Jason shrugged. Football wasn't really his thing. But he still sat on the couch next to Dylan, the other neko watching him warily.

"North Astaran Foxes against West Ceos Owls," Richard explained.

"Foxes got this easily," Dylan said.

"Probably. But the Owls might pull an upset. They have Itumak Naren."

"Overblown wannabe. Sorin is better hands down. Besides, Retty hasn't let a ball past all season."

"I never understood why they allowed an elf on the team. It should be separate, like it is for werewolves."

"What harm does it do? It's not like they're letting mages into the game," Dylan scoffed.

"Yeah, but he's been playing for the Foxes for thirty years. Don't you think they should get some new blood?"

Dylan shrugged.

"They're winning, aren't they? Etul agrees with you, but I think he just wants to have a chance the next time the Fox Invitational comes up."

"Isn't Damian retiring this year?"

"Next year, we think. He said he wants to spend more time at home. Etul might retire too, but I doubt it. He enjoys playing too much. Says it's a nice break from the ambulance rides."

Jason listened to the banter silently, still trying to figure out why Dylan had a problem with him. He had no idea what the neko thing was, and, as far as he knew, he had never done anything to piss anyone off. The neko seemed friendly enough with Richard.

He didn't really want to sit and watch football, especially with someone who kept glancing at him as though Jason was going to attack him. Standing, Jason went upstairs, hugging the wall tightly. He wanted to take a shower anyways.

 

DEVYN

 

Devyn snuffled around the tree, his nose telling him of a squirrel who had buried a nut there that morning and a bird plucking a worm for its lunch. Grunting, the wolf raised his leg on the tree, marking it as the edge of his territory, barely a block from his house. He wasn't greedy.

He heard a howl go up a few blocks away, another wolf rejoicing at the full moon, and the young wolf joined in, his companions following suit a moment later. The howls echoed through the city, a monthly ritual saying goodnight to the non wolves.

It always felt so invigorating to run with his pack. Well, not his pack. They had no leader; they were just a group of wolves who had met through Devyn and Dylan.

Margaret stalked past Devyn with a quiet huff, heading toward home. He just couldn't make her happy. The wolf wasn't sure what he had done wrong this time. He wasn't the only one who had howled. Or was it because he marked the tree? Did she want the tree? She had never seemed interested in it before.

Slinking after her with his tail down, Devyn pondered silently. The full moon felt ruined now, less a celebration and more a demonstration that he couldn't act properly. He was a wolf, not a human. Why couldn't his family see that? At least his father let him play with sticks.

Jordan suddenly bumped against Devyn's shoulder, the brown wolf turning to growl at Lysander. The white wolf huffed, looking pointedly between Devyn and Jordan. Devyn shook his head roughly.

They had tried that already. It seemed like the perfect plan, having a wolf who hated being a human talk to a human who hated being a wolf. But all that conversation had done was make both of them even more determined to remain in their favourite form.

Lysander hadn't seemed to get the message though. And it frustrated Devyn. What was wrong with wanting to live life as a wolf? He could still be employed, still be a productive member of society. That's what the two legs were worried about, right? He was already planning to be a therapy wolf just to appease his mother.

But he was not, and never would be, a human.

 

JASON

 

It was the radio playing that alerted Jason. That song, an Elven ballad he never learned the words to. But that tune was imprinted in his mind.

"Jason, get your feet off the back of the seat."

"But I like them high," he protested, kicking the back of the seat in front of him.

He felt tiny, a young child in his dreams, and he knew what was coming, but he also knew there was no stopping it.

"Listen to your mother Jason. Don't make me turn this car around."

Yes, turn the car around. Get away from here, stop this. He wanted to scream, but his dream self just kicked the chair again.

There was a loud squeal and a plummet, and he did scream then, as a bang sounded and a burning pain appeared in his throat. His scream was cut off, and the neko awoke in his bed, mouth open as he silently echoed his six year old self.

Tears streamed down Jason's face as he shook, trying to recover from the nightmare that had plagued him since he lost his parents. He hugged Elroy tightly to his body, seeking comfort in the stuffed animal.

A door creaked open, nails clicking on the floor. A soft whine drew the neko's attention to Devyn, the wolf looking up at him. His hand reached for the wolf uncertainly, and Devyn pushed his nose into Jason's hand. The wolf's tongue licked the neko reassuringly before Devyn jumped onto Jason's bed.

Warm fur wrapped around the neko, Devyn snuffling into Jason's armpit. Jason silently stroked the wolf, Devyn's presence helping to drive away the remnants of his nightmare. The neko was suddenly grateful he didn't sleep in the nude. A silly concern, but it also helped him calm down.

He missed his voice, missed the ability to say thank you. Of course he could still sign it, but it wasn't like the wolf would understand. Devyn had said he needed to take sign language.

Jason curled up even tighter into Devyn, the wolf's heartbeat luring him back to sleep. He didn't know what had brought his new brother into his room. A smell? A noise that Jason couldn't make? Regardless, the neko was going to enjoy the wolf curled up next to him. He had always wanted a dog to cuddle with when he was younger. Devyn certainly was no dog, but he was close enough.

And not for the first time, Jason was glad he had been adopted by a family of wolves.

Copyright © 2020 Yeoldebard; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental. Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 
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Chapter Comments

21 minutes ago, JeffreyL said:

You have created an interesting group of characters. It may take me a bit to keep the characters sorted. Jason and Devyn are great! I hope they become brothers in every sense of the word. It already seems like they are beginning to support each other. Thanks.

Thank you for reading. I hope you enjoy the journey :)

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Jason and Devyn are good, I hope they become friends and brothers. Margaret expects to much of Devyn, and doesn't understand him. A really dysfunctional family. 

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1 hour ago, silentreader3 said:

Is a neko a cat-like creature?

Yeah, it's a person with cat ears and a tail. I have a picture of one of my neko characters on my profile, I think.

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What the hell is up with Margaret. She has issues and needs to get over herself.

As for Dylan...

Looks like Devyn and Jason are going to need each other. Thank goodness they 'found' each other.

Edited by Buz
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49 minutes ago, Buz said:

What the hell is up with Margaret. She has issues and needs to get over herself.

As for Dylan...

Looks like Devyn and Jason are going to need each other. Thank goodness they 'found' each other.

Yeah, the family itself is highly messed up. Hopefully they can all figure out how to get along.

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Intresting scientific fact: how to tell a wolf from a dog.

True, both wolves and dogs are members of the canine family, but they are only closely related, not as close as man and chimpanze, which are both members of the hominid family. A wolf carries his tail down between his hind legs and a dog carries his tail raised up like a flag (unless he has done something wrong and is ashamed or embarrassed).

Mr Will

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Great start to this story.  I was especially please to see the DJL+D group are joining this story.  I agree that there are some strange family dynamics going on, especially between Devyn, his mom and how they both relate to their different forms.  Why Richard has not been turned after years of marriage and sex with a wolf shifter?

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57 minutes ago, raven1 said:

Great start to this story.  I was especially please to see the DJL+D group are joining this story.  I agree that there are some strange family dynamics going on, especially between Devyn, his mom and how they both relate to their different forms.  Why Richard has not been turned after years of marriage and sex with a wolf shifter?

Turning someone into a wolf requires semen to enter a person's body, something Margaret is unable to do. So for the foreseeable future, Richard will be remaining human.

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Guessing there's a fair bit of guilt motivating Margaret, and she never intended to have a child born in wolf form (I run far too much Worlds of Darkness tabletop, can't help just thinking of him as Lupus. Certainly how he comes across if you know it). It's hard to watch, projection of guilt, but understandable.

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