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Taming the Storm (Crimson Storm Chronicles Book 1) by Yumoyori Wilson (1)

Green eyes.

Beautiful gems that glittered under the lamp post at the other end of the alley. They widened, fear taking over them; his body jolted forward into a sprint.

I watched as if in slow motion as he made his way toward me; the dark gloomy alleyway looked twice as long now. I could see the desperation in his eyes. His orange-gold strands of hair were bound together by a black gold ribbon decorated with ancient text that began to glow— the sensation of magic in the air evident.

But it didn't matter. Something told me my fate had been set in stone and there was nothing I could do to change it.

Maybe it was the five magical creatures that burst out of the opened pocket watch that made my hand tremble, making the small piece of machinery feel triple the weight it normally should be.

I could see the other five men come into view— all of them sprinting in slow motion to reach me. My eyes looked up at the five magical beings above me as they danced in celebration. Or were they somehow mocking me for setting them free?

The magic that surrounded me was suffocating, and I struggled to breathe, leaving me frozen in crippling fear at the overflow of magical essence. It could potentially kill me— the level of energy stronger than that of my mother or father, who were the most powerful shifters I'd ever known.

The creatures crashed into one another mid-air — creating a spinning wheel of color: red, white, blue, gold, and pink.

I watched in awe; my eyes grew wide as the spinning bundle of color shot forward —straight into my body.

The impact threw me off my feet, the force of magic surging through my body as my legs and hands flailed uselessly as I fell.

I couldn't distinguish what drew my attention more — the unbearable pain that coursed through my veins or the stunned and fearful expressions of the men approaching me as I made my slow descent to the ground.

Before I hit the wet pavement, I opened my eyes to stare at the six men. But something had changed.

My fear didn't linger on the feeling of impending doom as the power I once feared thrummed through my veins, but focused instead on the fear of leaving these men — the ones I loved, again.

As my conscious wavered, flickers of emotions and memories flashed through my mind, before leaving just as quickly. Then dark spots filled my vision.

I finally hit the ground; my body bounced from the heavy impact and the energy my body struggled to contain. It felt like trying to close a container with too much fluid — the excess trying to forcefully escape.

My head hit the ground first, falling back until all I could see was an upside down image of the way I'd come from.

The one time I hadn't listened to James, it led to my death. A tear rolled down my cheek and I struggled to breathe through my nostrils - blood already began to pool within them and trail down my esophagus.

I wanted to gag or turn my head to the side to let the metallic tasting liquid have a way to escape, but I was nothing but a broken rag doll, paralyzed on the cold wet ground.

The last thing I saw was my best friend — those ruby red eyes that I'd loved and the soft, light pink lips I had kissed every time he craved my touch.

I thought if I died, I would at least have a sense of fulfillment for living a decent life. But as my eyes began to close, my best friend ran forward and I regretted not telling him how I truly felt. I wished I had told him how much I yearned for us to be a couple and not just a fling based on emotions and alcohol.

I loved him…yet, I also somehow loved the six men who were nothing but a group of strangers to me. Somehow, I knew they had loved and cherished me till my very last breaths.

As my consciousness finally began to fade, my body started to fail one organ at a time. In that moment, I knew I'd died before. I'd lived, enjoyed the joys of love and fame, and had died a horrible death— a demise I hadn’t deserved.

As I took my final breath, my lungs unable to spare any more energy to function, I made a silent plea.

If I survived this, I would conquer my fears. I would not be afraid to speak my mind and admit what troubled my heart.

I would cherish each breath I took and strive toward achieving my dreams.

Most importantly, I would love. Love without boundaries and follow my heart.

The last thing I heard was my name; a part of me remembered the way it rolled off James’ tongue whereas the new part of me didn't recognize the foreign voice.

"CRIMSON!"

Crimson...or Storm.

Which one am I?

Does it matter?

I think not.

Because without some type of miracle, I will become nothing but a memory.

And that is my biggest regret of all.

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