A Cold Heart

[Just a story I’m no longer very proud of. Its not terrible, but I don’t feel that its very good.]

    I was shaken awake in the dark of night. I took the headphones off my ears and blinked at the man next to me, “Huh?” I grumbled as I was rocked along with everyone else in the truck. 
    “We’re almost there, dude,” My friend Andrew told me as he shook me a little bit more. Andrew was a big guy with dirty blonde hair and blue eyes. He almost exclusively wore basketball shorts and hoodies. 
    Christian, who was driving the truck glanced away from the snow for a few moments to smirk at me, “Is he finally up?” Christian was thin with light brown hair and green eyes. 
    “Yeah, I’m up,” I groaned, “Are we there yet?” 
    “Didn’t Andrew say we almost were, idiot,” Sean told me in the most loving way possible from the passenger seat. He was also a huge guy, but not in the fat way, tall and muscular.  
    “Just a few more minutes, its gonna be cold and we’ll leave you in the car if you go back to sleep,” Christian reminded me. I stretched with what little space was available to me and looked out at the dark trees barely lit up by the brights of the truck. The snow on the ground was hardly touched by what few creatures of monsters were out on the prowl during this time of year. Christian’s family owned a nice lakeside cabin out here. This time of year it was frozen over and the snow was piled high. It was the perfect time for a weekend with friends. Even with all the monster girls out and about, we were headed out into the woods like any other year.  
    “I’m so ready for those burgers,” Sean moaned. We hadn’t eaten for a few hours, the Pringles and candy we had brought for the drive had run out a while ago. 
    I picked at my arm, “Same here, Andrew I hope you’re ready to cook,” I smirked. 
    “Why couldn’t my girlfriend come? She would have LOVED to cook for us,” Andrew grumbled.  
    “We ALL would have liked to bring our girls, but this has always been a guys weekend, even when we had human girlfriends,” Christian reminded him. 
    “Maybe we can make a summer trip with them?”  
    “Anon would have to get a girlfriend first,” Andrew teased. The group chuckled at my expense. I frowned, but I was mostly used to it. Andrew was usually a cunt about it but he was actually autistic so I don’t believe he’s trying to be as mean as he comes across. 
    “Eventually,” I mumbled, staring out the window again. I nearly jumped as I swore I saw eyes staring back for a brief moment. 
    “Here!” Christian announced. We pulled up to the cabin, the outside covered in snow and ice and a foreboding darkness coming from inside the house, “Anon and Sean, get some firewood, we’ll drag everything in.”  
    I put my jacket on and followed Sean to a small shed. He opened up the small shed and ducked inside, picking up firewood. I looked around, I felt a piercing stare from the darkness as I spotted a pair of icey blue eyes, “Yo! Anon!” I was tossed a small log. I caught it, keeping it from smashing my jaw. Sean emerged from the shed with more wood under his arms, “Let’s get inside, I’m freezing my ass off.” 
    I looked back at the eyes, only to see that they had vanished. I shivered as I realised just how cold I really was. I followed Sean back inside and we got a fire going. A few more lights were put on as the fire was started and the grill was turned on. I started sweeping up dust and wiping down tables and preparing beds. The others got to their own duties. Any time I stood near a window I could I felt the same icey presence on my skin. I closed the blinds on all windows I neared and continued my work until the burgers were done, “Anon, why are all the curtains closed?” Christian asked me with a wary glance. 
    “Uh, nothing, just got a little spooked by something,” I finished plating up and sat at the table with everyone else. 
    We were quiet, the exhaustion of our journey finally taking its toll on us, “Who’s packing?” Sean asked, mouth half full of food, “If Anon really did see something I just wanna feel a little safer.” 
    Christian and I nodded, “I think we both brought full sizes and I brought a hunting rifle and shotgun to do a little shooting,” Christian noted. I gave a thumbs up, not wanting to talk with my mouth full. I lifted my shirt and flashed my carry, “He’s got the pea shooter too it looks like.” 
    I shook my head, ready to sleep. A few conversations were had into the night before the front door was barred and we all went to our usual rooms. I was lucky enough to get a room on my own, very tiny room. It had a bunk bed and a little side table as well as a small closet. I glanced out the window, unsure if I was seeing anything or not. I felt sweat build up on my forehead as I stared into the inky blackness outside. I got up and closed the curtains before sniffing my bedside candle. 
 
    I woke up as light streamed into the room through the windows. I looked at the snow that had piled outside. I noted something strange, spots on the snow that had iced over as if in foot step patters. I shook my head, I was just imagining it, probably. I wandered into the main room and took a seat next to Sean. He was playing solitaire by himself, “Sleep well?” He asked without looking up from his game.  
    “Well enough. Want me to get eggs goin’?” I asked, stretching.  
    “Yes please. See anything spooky last night?” He chuckled at my previous nervousness. 
    “Hmph, maybe. I dunno,” I shook my head. 
    “Grab some firewood while you’re up, would you?” 
    I rolled my eyes, “Lazy shit,” I chuckled as I slipped some shoes and my coat on as I stepped outside. I looked around at the fresh snow, it was coming down a bit harder than it was supposed to be. I frowned and stomped through the snow towards the shed. I heard a noise, like ice cracking. I looked around at the woods, unsure what was out there. I didn’t have a gun on me so I was a little nervous. I hurried to the shed and threw the door open, ready to get back to the warmth of the indoors. There was a THUNK and the snapping of wood as something crashed into the door I had just opened. I checked the door. A huge and sharp icicle had been launched into the door, “Holy shit!” I gasped before grabbing a fresh block of wood and running back inside.  
    I ran in and slammed the door behind me, dragging a lot of snow in with me. I threw the wood on the floor and slammed the lock, “Christ, did a bear almost get you?” Christian frowned at me as I slid to the floor, hand over my chest. 
    “I have no idea what that was but it tried to kill me,” I panted. Christian picked up a rifle and stomped outside. I followed him, “Look at this,” I pointed to the door of the shed. There was nothing there, not even a hole in the wooden door, “What?” I breathed, head in my hands. 
    “You sure you’re not seeing things, Anon?” Christian shook his head at me and took the mag out of his rifle, “Or is this some kinda prank?” 
    “Dude, why the fuck would I lie about this!?” I shouted, exasperated, “Something tried to kill me! I swear!” 
    “Whatever dude,” He shook his head and headed back inside. 
    I looked around a bit more, seeing nothing. A chilly wind blew through me, prompting me to go back inside. My three friends gave me sideways looks before going back to whatever they were doing. I went to my room and sat on my bed. I had no idea what was going on, I needed to calm myself down. I took some deep breaths and moved to the window, wanting to look out at the beautiful winter around me. Snow gently fell around the cabin and onto the trees and ground. I focused on the trees watching as snow piled up and fell off the trees. As I looked into the darkness beyond the trees, I spotted something. Something stood in the woods, half hiding behind a tree. I couldn’t make it out much, but I could feel it watching me. A chill ran through my body as if the blood within me was freezing. I watched as ice crystals formed on the window. I shook from the cold and my fear. 
    There was a knock on the door, startling me out of the cold feeling, “Yo, Anon! Foods hot!” Andrew shouted at me. 
    I turned back to the form in the woods. It had since left and the ice on the window had thawed. I panted in fear as I grabbed another coat, doubling up on layers. I still shivered, chilled to my core, “Cold?” Sean asked as he stuffed eggs and bacon into his mouth. 
    “Y-yeah,” I nodded, not wanting to tell them about my fears.  
    “See your big scary monster out there?” Andrew laughed at me. 
    “I dunno,” I shrugged, “The snow’s just fucking with me,” I plated up some eggs and sat at the table. I couldn’t get myself to eat as I stared at the scrambled eggs. 
    Christian looked over at me, “You look like you’ve seen a ghost,” He teased. 
    I shivered, “I’m just cold,” I turned away and stared into the crackling fire. 
    “Cold or scared, Anon?” Andrew egged me on. 
    “Fuck off.” 
    “Calm down, Anon,” Sean frowned at me, “Drop the act while you’re at it.” 
    I got up knocking my plate over, “I hope that monster fucking kills me, I’m done with this shit,” I growled. I stepped into the boots as my three friends stared at me, dumbfounded as I ran into the snow. I didn’t know where I was going as I headed into the woods. 
 
    I had been wandering for about an hour. I shivered horrible as the cold was getting to me. My stomach rumbled, I had skipped breakfast. I stomped through the deep snow and whimpered as a cold wind snuck into my clothes. I needed to turn back, “This is so dumb,” I told myself as I turned around. My foot prints were gone. My heart sank as the cold began creeping into me once more. I just started walking, praying I knew where I was going. It was obvious that I didn’t. I glanced at the dead trees that all looked exactly the same.  
    I heard something behind me, the sound of ice breaking. My heart pounded as I looked around, I couldn’t tell where the sound had come from. I heard it again, closer to me now. I started running in a panic. I panted as I struggled to run in my bulky clothing. The snow increased as I moved, the cracking ice stayed the same pace, catching up to me. It was as if the snow was grabbing at my ankles as I kept struggling to move. I tripped in the ice, going face down in the snow. I struggled to move as my weariness and hunger took over. My pursuer was on top of me.  
    I felt a hand on my arm, patting me softly. It pulled away slowly before two hands gripped me rolling me onto my back. I looked up at my pursuer with snow and sunlight in my eyes. I whimpered, unable to speak or will my limbs to move. Warm fingers caressed my face, “Sssh,” A woman whispered, “Rest,” Her voice was sweet and hypnotic. Soothing and calm. I nodded and did as she said, closing my eyes. I passed out, lying in the snow with a strange woman touching my face. 
 
    I blinked at the white ceiling above me. I sat up and looked around. I was in an igloo, quite a large one at that. The floor of the igloo was a sheet of perfectly smoothed ice. I was on a bed of snow with a multitude of blankets over it. I was surprised by how well furnished the icy abode was. There was a couch made of snow and a dining table of well crafted ice along with a wonderful chandelier over head. I stayed on the bed, unsure of what to do or where I even was. The entrance was covered by a sheet of thick ice, keeping the cold out. I was surprised by how warm I was, even with my thick outer coat taken off.  
    The ice wall blocking the exit was slid away and a woman entered the room. She carried two plates of food in her hands, some kind of cooked meat. She glanced at me, a blank, almost frowning look on her face, “You are awake,” She said with a cold tone. She had incredibly pale skin with a slight blue tint. She had snow white hair and wore a white kimono with long sleeves that turned light blue near the end of the sleeves. The dress part that actually covered the legs was very short and showed off her blue thigh highs and white sandals. 
     I gave her a weak smile, still trying to figure out where I was, “Yeah. Tha--” 
    “Were you trying to get yourself killed out there, boy?” She hissed as she set the plates on the table. She glared at me, her eyes had dark blue scalea with white pupils. I said nothing, shrinking away from her. She sighed, “I apologise,” Her face softened up at me and she flashed something at me that could almost be described as a smile, “I have seen many succumb to the cold in my time, I would hate for someone like you to succumb as well.” 
    “Uh, tha--” 
    “When I said to rest, I did not mean to faint. You were lucky I had friends nearby to help me carry you here,” She continued to berate me. I looked down at my lap, hands folded as I listened to her speak in a harsh tone, “And another thing, that facial hair is--” She stopped as she looked at me. She cleared her throat, “Just fine, for now at least. Come, sit, eat,” She commanded as she sat at the ice table. I nodded and sat with her. I stared at the steaming hot and lightly seasoned meat in front of me. I had no idea what it was, “Venison,” She informed me before I could ask. I picked up my ice fork and knife and got to eating, not wanting to be rude. It was a bit charred and the spices didn’t do much to mask it. I ate it quickly as I realised how starving I was. The woman watched me with an icy gaze, judging me. I stopped my ravenous consumption and looked up at her, she was calmly and carefully cutting her food with a knife, “I have never seen someone so eager to eat my cooking,” She smiled at me. 
    “Its--” 
    “Well, your table manners could use some work,” She huffed, “Using the shovel technique with such a meal is quite inappropriate.” 
    “Sorry,” I kept my sentences short. 
    “Hold your fork like this,” She grabbed my wrist and adjusted my hand, “Much better. Sit up straight as well and--” 
    “Who ARE you?” I blurted out at the mystery woman. 
    She blinked at me as if confused by my outburst, “I apologize,” She coughed, “I am Kukiko. Your name is Anon, no?” 
    “Uh, yes,” I gave her a confused look, “How did--” 
    “Why did you run off into the snow and endanger your life?” 
    “I... Got frustrated with my friends,” I explained quickly, expecting to be interrupted. Kukiko merely raised an eyebrow at me, “Well, its more than just that. Its the same shit as at home where I’m not allowed to be right about anything and no one believes me on anything. I was spooked by something and no one would believe me.” 
    “What do you mean ‘not allowed to be right’?” 
    “Well... Here’s an example... Where were you born?” 
    “The frigid mountains of Zipangu during a particularly terrible snow storm!” She proudly told me. 
    “No, you were born in Scotland during the summer,” I told her matter-of-factly. 
    “What? No, I--” 
    It was my turn to interrupt her, “See how ridiculous it is? That's something that you SHOULD know for sure, right? Imagine that constantly.” 
    “Ah... I see,” She looked down at the meal she had just finished, “Why would someone do that to you?” 
    “I don’t know. My mom is a damn nutcase and my dad is just weird.” 
    She put a hand on my wrist as I finished eating, “I am sorry to hear that.” 
    “Yeah... Thanks. Thanks for letting me vent. I should probably go, my friends are probably worried about me.” 
    “Go?” She chuckled, “Why would I let you go?” 
    My heart skipped a beat as I heard a sort of malevolence in her tone, “Wh-what?” 
    “I bring you here to rescue you and you just want to leave me here? Alone?” The hand on my wrist gripped tightly, “You are so very warm~” 
    I tried to pull my hand away, “What do you want from me?” 
    She let out a breath, the temperature in the room dropping, “You,” Ice crystals began to form on my wrist. 
    “Get off me!” I cried as I tore myself away from her. I ran to the entrance, trying to force the ice door open. 
    “I took you in, I kept you warm and fed you my finest cooking. Now you just want to LEAVE without repaying my kindness!?” She hissed at me as I heard a familiar sound. The sound of ice cracking. I watched in terror as icy spikes formed on her body. They jutted out of her ankles, formed in her hair and even from her face. I tried to move, only to find that a thick block of ice had formed on my ankles. I pushed my hands against the ice behind me. Those froze to the surface as well. I shook from the cold and ice, “Nothing to say?” She chuckled, stepping towards me gracefully. 
    “I-- But-- I--” I blubbered. 
    “Sssh,” She caressed my face as a large ice spike formed in her hand, “Quiet, dear,” She stabbed the spike into my chest, right over my heart. It didn’t hurt. It was just cold. So very very cold. Kukiko stepped away from me with a smirk on her face, the ice that bound me fell away as I fell to my knees. I shivered horribly and uncontrollably. The ice witch let out a smug laugh, “Cold, dear?” 
    I looked up at her, tears in my eyes as I felt like I was dying of cold, “You bitch,” I hissed at her. She looked shocked at me, “Take me in just to kill me with your fucking i-ice m-magic,” I stuttered as the cold got to me. 
    “A-Anon,” She stammered, “I was just--” 
    I drew my conceal carry, pointing it at her, shutting her up. I fumbled with the trigger, unable to apply enough pressure to the safety. I tried to use my other hand as I curled up from the cold. I kept struggling to act, “I w-won’t give y-you the pleasure,” I brought it to my head, ready to end it. 
    “ANON, STOP!” Kukiko dived at me, wrestling the pistol from my grasp, “Please! I didn’t want this, I was just playing with you,” She hugged me, her warmth spreading through my body, “I’m sorry!” 
    I looked up at her, “Why?” 
    “Do you know nothing about monsters, fool?” She chuckled as she brought me even closer, “I... just wanted someone to be with me. Even if by force. Let me warm you up.”  
    “I understand that. Just wanting to be happy with someone,” I chuckled, “Sorry I tried to shoot you.” 
    “Sorry I scared you so much,” She caressed my face again, “I will lead you back to your friends and leave your life,” She told me sadly. 
    I looked up at her, “Why would you do that?” 
    “Because you hate me.” 
    I laughed in her face before pulling her head to mine, planting a kiss on her lips, “I like your style,” I admitted, “Wanna come home with me?” 
    “I would love to, husband,” She grinned at me, “But before that, how about you warm me up, hm?” She helped me up and dragged me to the bed. I was stripped of my clothes and pushed down. She climbed on top of my as she undressed herself. She licked her icy lips as she looked down at me, “You look... Delicious, darling.” 
 
    “I’m back!” I called as I pushed my way into the cabin.  
    Andrew looked up from his cooking, “Where have you been?” 
    “On a walk,” I set the bag I was carrying down. 
    “Why arn’t you wearing your coat? Did you lose it?” Sean chuckled. 
    “I got too--” 
    “Bully my husband and I will see you turned into a block of ice, swine,” Kukiko hissed as she entered behind me, bringing a blast of cold air and snow in with her.  
    “Oh shit!” Christian stared at her with wide eyes. 
    “Do not use such profanities with me--” 
     I grabbed her hand, shutting her up, “Kukiko, these are my friends. Friends, this is my wife.” 
    “Hello, Anon’s friends,” She said coldly, gripping my hand and forming ice crystals on my arm. My friends all weakly waved at her. 
    “We’re gonna go hang out in my room, let us know when dinner is ready, okay?” I pulled her into my room and was pushed against the wall. 
    “They seem nice enough. They will be quite easy to subjugate under the rule of the queen of ice,” She spoke loudly, making sure my friends could hear. She kissed my cheek, leaving some ice behind on my skin. 
    “Uhuh,” I gave her a kiss on the lips. 
    “Warm me up, would you?” She moved to the bed and held her arms out invitingly. 
    “Of course,” I let her grab me and lie on top of me. 
    “I love you,” She whispered into my ear before she gave me another kiss. She teasingly blew freezing air onto my ear, sending a shiver down my spine. She chuckled at me, “You’re so fun to tease.”     “I love you too,” I shook my head and smiled.

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