The Forbidden Forest

There once was a girl named Lyanna. She was born on the first of May. Her hair was jet black, her eyes, an emerald green. As she grew, her intelligent green eyes became more intense. There was fierceness just beneath the surface, safely hidden. She was always quiet, always closed to the world. She was known for disappearing and going on long walks in the forest behind her house. No one else dare venture there for fear of the untamed wildlife beyond.

One day on one of these walks, Lyanna happens upon an old house in the middle of the forest. Covered in vines and with creaking frames, the old house stood, seeming to sway in the wind. A single candle shows through a grimy, broken window. Curious, Lyanna draws closer. She catches a glimpo0s of a boy, his hair black as her own, yet his eyes a bright sky blue.

Fearful, yet still curious, Lyanna draws hesitantly closer to the old house. Just as she reaches for the rusted door handle, a voice behind her says, "I would advise against that." Jumping backward, Lyanna stumbles into a tall boy with black hair and blue eyes. His strong hands grasp her forearms as his eyes scan her slowly, up and down. Lyanna quickly straitens herself and backs away from the strange boy, turning her back towards the house. "Who are you and what are you doing here?" Lyanna asks the stranger. "If I were you, I'd rather have your back turned on me rather than that house."

Glancing over her shoulder unafraid of the house, Lyanna turns back to the stranger and asks, "Why would you say that?" "You'll be trapped in there forever if you don't watch yourself." "But I saw you in there. Over there by that cand -" Lyanna stops mid-sentence as she looks over and finds no candle in the broken window. "What candle?" the stranger says without looking at the window. "I could've sworn it was just there," Lyanna says in wonderment. "I think you had better head home." Stubborn as ever, Lyanna says, "I think your hiding something in here." She turns to op0en the rusted, rotting door yet again.

Just as her hand touches the doorknob the strangers hand, now icy to the touch, grip around her wrist and pull her away from the door, spinning her to face him and look into his eyes. "Please listen to me. You need to go home. You're not safe here." Lyanna looks into his clear blue eyes, finding him quite beautiful. She stares a moment longer, his icy touch chilling her to the bone, yet at the same time filling her with excitement. "Tell me your name." The stranger looks at her a moment, as if not quite understanding. Finally he says in a low voice, "Collin."

He pauses, as if waiting for her reaction then says, "Now will you please go home?" "Not until you tell me what you are doing here," she says, detaching herself from his grasp, yet not stepping away or leaving his gaze. "That you do not need to know. Just know that I am trying to protect you from a horrible fate." "I'm not going anywhere until you tell me who you are." Exasperated, he says, "I told you, my name is Collin. Now you must go. It's getting too dark, you have to leave before -"he cuts himself off. "Before what?" "Nothing. Your parents are probably looking for you anyway. You need to get home." "My parents don't care where I am." "They should. Children go missing all the time," he says, scanning her face for any hint of fear. Instead he sees defiance. "I am not a mere child to be scared into leaving. I want to know who you are." "To do that you will have to gain my trust, and to gain my trust you must first trust me. Now will you trust me when I say that you need to go home?" "Will you be here tomorrow?" "Yes," he says without hesitation.

Lyanna nods once, then turns to leave him standing there. As he watches her walk off he says in a low voice, "I'm always here." He then disappears into thing mist and a single candle is lit in the broken window of the old house.