Rayna cared not about how dangerous her situation was. The thought never even popped into her rampaging train of thoughts. How could she when curfew had passed 1 hour, 24 minutes, and 32 seconds ago. How could she when slowing down meant the fury of Hell residing in her father would continue to grow and swell until there was no sign of the storm ending. The roads that were covered in ice and sleet, slippery and treacherous were as scary as a butterfly in her eyes.
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Rayna wished she didn’t have to go home.
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She was a smart kid with a pretty face which was thanks to her parents. She knew that staying in line was her best bet to get out the hell hole that was her home. It was best for her and the other 3 children that she called her younger siblings. Tonight, though, was different.
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Maybe she just wanted to be a normal teenager who didn’t have to leave the party at 8:30 to go home at 9:00 to a dysfunctional family. Maybe she was having so much fun, forgetting about her problems that the ever closing in reality couldn’t break through the wall that was her well-earned fantasy. Now, though, it all came rushing back like a train slamming into a brick wall at full speed.
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Was she destined to always go back to a place where no one wanted her?
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Rayna had to get home no matter what it meant. But as the stars disappeared behind the ever looming trees it seemed as though God had another plan for her. Suddenly, before she could understand what was happening, a deer jumped out of the trees causing her to swerve to avoid hitting the animal. She should’ve stopped but with the deadly ice on the road and the speed of the car, the red van continued to move in circles. Spinning in circles, screaming and multiple curses filled the quiet and peaceful air.
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The car went sideways and hit one, two, three trees until falling onto its hood and finally stopping. The van was beyond repair and along the way had lost one of its tires. For a moment the only thing that was heard was the weeping of trees that surrounded the girl. And once again, it was quiet and serene as the day before as though the only thing that had happened was the fall of beauteous, graceful white snowflakes.
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Her phone woke her up.
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There was crimson red and pure white everywhere Rayna looked, it mixed together to create a sickening pink color that churned her stomach in an unappealing way. She felt numb, like she was drugged not too long before. Her entire body was on fire trying to push, push, push it out. She racked her brain to remember what had happened
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The deer, the crash, the spinning and turning, it all fading to black. It all came rushing back and Rayna let out a slow, tremulous sob as the pain met up with her. The seat belt was digging into her abdomen and Rayna’s eyes were beginning to blur with unshed tears. Something was wrong with her arm. It felt wrong and looked wrong even in the darkness of the forest.
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Oh, God the darkness.
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Rayna’s phone quieted before picking up again. The sound of Beyonce’s voice singing snapped her out of whatever trance she was in. The gravity of this situation finally set in carried on the backs of the wind and she began to claw her way out. Rayna tried to unbuckle herself but the latch was broken. She quickly began to search for a sharp object, opening the glove compartment. Out fell a pair of scissors but she wasn’t quick enough to grab them and they fell onto the lid. Stretching to grab them, Rayna ignored the ache in her bones and the thrumming in her head.
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She finally was able to get them between her pointer and middle finger and pulled them up. Rayna cut through the belt and plummeted to the hood, letting out a strangled scream. Tenderly, she got onto her knees, not bothering to notice the glass that dug into her jeans and cut into her skin. Rayna slowly, painfully shuffled over to the car window, fully intending to kick the glass barrier open. However, that wasn’t needed.
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The car was being lifted up. She screamed in terror and pain. The sudden movement caused her already frail body to fall backwards into the wheel. It dug into Rayna’s already wounded side and she had to bite her bottom lip to stop anymore sounds from escaping.
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Rayna struggled to peek through the now broken window and her blood chilled at the sight of it. She was higher than she had ever been before and the notion almost made her faint. The beast roared and it made Rayna’s car shake with a vigor in retaliation.
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Rayna--being unprepared for the movement-- fell out of the window, cutting her abdomen with the leftover pieces of glass. It was deep and long, but she didn’t feel it. The blood roared in her ears and her beautiful face was scratched, her ribs hurt and she was going to bleed to death.
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The trees laughed at her for giving up so quickly. The stars and moon shook their heads at Rayna’s battered body but granted her the pleasure of looking up at them as she plummeted to the death that awaited. She kept her eyes wide open, gazing up at the lights in the sky and tried to curl in on herself.
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However, such a death seemed not to be in God’s plan either.
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She was caught by what she could only describe as a gigantic paw. Rayna shut her eyes tightly for fear of the unknown. When nothing happened, though, she glanced up at the beast. What she saw took her breath away. There, looking down on her, was a dragon. It’s scales were darker than the night without its stars. It’s eyes red as the blood that flowed from her wounds and as deep as the ocean.
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She was so lost in the beast’s eyes that Rayna didn’t notice that he was moving. “No! I have to go home!” Her voice was hoarse and what she said was a lie. He froze and looked back at her. It was then that Elle realized that this wasn’t possible.
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Dragons don’t exist.
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She had to be sleeping, this had to be a bad dream. Rayna knew it wasn’t though. The cold threatening to freeze her was too real. The pain terrorizing her senses were too agonizing. The feel of the dragon’s breath on her body was to warm. He opened his mouth and for a second Rayna thought she would be eaten for speaking out.
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“You wished for this did you not? You shan’t go home. You will come to live in my home where you will live out your remaining days with me.” His gravelly voice shook Elle to her core and her eyes widened.
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“Now silence. You will not speak until we are at the castle. Do you understand, my little Rayna?”
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She couldn’t move. Rayna tried to open her mouth and speak. How did he know my name? Nothing came out, only air escaping. She clawed at her throat, wishing to speak. It was futile. Rayna couldn’t scream, cry, or yell for help. After a while she gave up. It was no use to fight a beast such as he. So Rayna let the dragon carry her deeper, deeper into what seemed a never-ending forest.
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"But when all's said and done," Rayna thought, suddenly very tired, "I suppose I did get my wish."
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