"Don't stray from the path…"
Through the forest is the only path to my grandmother's. My grandma happens to be quite popular considering that she's the town matchmaker, and everyone wants to see her. And everyone knows that you stay on the dirt path and you never, ever, step off it.
At first my mother would walk me over to her house every day before work and my dad would come to get me after work. I'd wear one of my red dresses with my patented black shoes and I'd carry my basket filled with food.
Then at seven my parents had decided to let me walk myself.
"Charlotte," My mother frowns.
She sets down a glass of orange juice for me.
"Mother is it really necessary?"
"She's your grandmother of course it is."
I blink a few times and sigh. There's really no use in arguing it.
"Fine I'll be going then." I give her cheek a quick kiss before leaving.
I retie my red cloak.
I had just turned 18 and they're already ready to marry me off to someone. Though most girls in this village would have been married off two years ago. I guess having the matchmaker as my grandmother is somewhat of a benefit then.
Although anyone who's new to this village would assume that this dreary and downcast atmosphere is a sign of rain, but to us it's the usual weather. Essentially it's like you can't see the sun but the whole sky is permanently gray and covered with clouds.
I sigh as I make my way down the path surrounded by trees and the familiar ominous feeling of comfortable fear.
I stop and close my eyes for a brief moment.
I continue to walk again.
"Charlotte." I hear his once taunting teasing tone became firm.
"Matthew I swear…" I stop again.
He steps out of the shadows. His tall tone figure appears; his unnaturally beautiful and angular face with his baby blue eyes just sparkle with mischief. His light scruff somehow makes me want to roll my eyes.
"Oh my dear Charlie," He shoves his hands in his pockets, "Won't you please come over here?"
I ignore him and decide to keep down my path.
He walks alongside me but still stays on his side. If he could, he could easily grab me. Sometimes I wish he would. I secretly wish the gorgeous Matthew would ravage my virgin body, but then I blame it on how deliciously forbidden it would be and how sexy he is.
I'd never act on my lustfulness though.
"You never came to meet me. I have you birthday gift, but its back home. You should come get it." He grins.
"You'd been trying to lure me onto your side for years. What makes you think that now would be the moment I'd come over?" I ask narrowing my eyes at him.
"Well I think the tempting idea of a birthday present would add to my tempting sexiness and finally do you in."
"Well you're wrong Matthew. Go away." I deadpan avoiding his gaze.
"I'll never leave you Charlotte; you know that. Despite how unsettlingly beautiful you are you're still my best friend."
"I might just be the one to leave you then." I say. Immediately I want to take back what I said.
"What?" He growls and stops in his tracks.
"I shouldn't have said anything." I touch my nearly black hair out of nervousness. I keep walking.
I stop and turn to look at him. My cloak brushes against the back of my legs. I had chosen a tight fitting red skirt that went from under my breasts to mid-thigh and a white button up top. My outfit flattered me immensely. I seemed to look more like a girl Matthew would sleep with than a girl a man would marry.
Grandmother will give me hell for my outfit, but at least it'll give me some sort of rebellious satisfaction.
"Elaborate. Now." His werewolf side is coming out.
"Grandmother is finding me a husband."
"No. She can't."
"Oh and you're going to stop her?" I sass, "You can't Matthew. You can't step on this side and I'm not going over to yours."
"So you're going to marry some asshole that you don't love and go away with him?" he nearly shouts.
"I never said I'm marrying whomever she finds." I defend.
"But you and I both know that you won't fight her on it. Your grandmother is manipulative and gets whatever she wants-"
"Sounds a lot like you." I rebut.
"That's different Charlotte. I live on this side. There's a reason why you shouldn't stray from the path."
"So why do you want me to?"
"Because I want to be with you. I'll protect you Charlotte. You'll be safe with me; safe and happy."
I sigh and touch my hair, "Matthew as much as I'd like to believe that-I can't."
"You're my best friend. I won't let anything or anyone hurt you."
Why does he have to be so damn tempting?
"And how many girls have you told that to?"
"None and you know that. Don't you dare try to use that as an excuse to not to trust me. We both know that what I do is because of who I am."
My hands fall away from my hips, "I never should've said anything." I mutter.
"I heard that."
"Well it's true! You get so damn possessive of me and-and you just turn into this raging mon-" I stop myself.
"A monster? Yeah I fucking do turn into a monster."
I flinch at his double meaning, "I'm sorry I didn't mean that."
He sighs, "I know I'm sorry too. I wish it wasn't true though. At least the monster part-I don't mind being possessive of you because I care about you."
"I'm already late to see Grandmother…how about I meet you after my visit with her."
His face falls but he sighs and nods, "Okay." He gives me a sad smile and I continue on my way without him following me.
Somehow there's nothing sadder than Matthew being sad.
I bite my finger in deep thought.
I jump and snap out of my thoughts, "Yes Grandmother?"
"Bruce was trying to get your attention my dear."
"Oh. I'm sorry. What were you saying?" I turn to give the man my attention. He seems to be at least five years older than I am. He's about an average kind of attractive with light brown hair and dull blue eyes, but I'm sure it's his money that my grandmother finds as the best fit for me.
The man prior was less wealthy, more attractive but a conceited bastard no less. At least this one is nice.
"I was just asking about your father."
"Oh well he's been a baker since forever. What does your father do?"
I try to divert the conversation away from myself.
"I'm not entirely sure what he does exactly. I just know he has a bunch of old money as with my mother."
My only response is a light nod. I bite my lip. Grandmother dismisses Bruce.
"Charlotte," Her tone is firm and scolding, "Charlotte he was a perfectly good match."
"No he wasn't! You're so amazing at finding matches for people, but not for me. You're so biased and only want me to marry for money or looks-not love."
"And you think you know what love is? If you do then please tell me who you're in love with."
I visibly shrink at her words. Instantly I think of Matthew.
"I don't have to be in love to know that I don't love those two men. There's absolutely no connection."
"We just want a better life for you Charlotte. You've never been in a relationship and you've never gone out to find love before. So why now? Clearly there has to be someone on your mind if you suddenly care about true love." She removes her glasses and narrows her eyes at me.
"I just want to be able to find better-"
"-What's better than the guys I've picked out for you?"
I sigh and take a deep breath. I calm down and fold my hands in my lap.
"You're right Grandmother. I'm sorry. Can we continue this tomorrow?"
"Yes I think that's best."
I kiss her on the cheek and head out.
"Dress more appropriately tomorrow Charlotte." Is her fleeting comment.
"Matthew!" I call out.
"Yes love?" He appears from the shadows as always.
Without a second thought I step onto the other side and give him a hug.
A/n: Hmmm another new story based off of/inspired by Little Red Riding Hood? Well of course. It's one of my favorite stories and seems far too relatable to my life, so naturally I had to write a story about it!
Let me know what you think and review! XX