It was another busy day. Full of teaching the boys how best to handle injury in the wilderness. Since all venatori are taught to hunt down other supernatural creatures. We had to teach all about how you could get injured, and how you could fix it, or what to do in the event you might die from a wound – and what wounds you could die from.
Even Venatori have heart failure, and issues breathing when injured. Our fast healing is all well and good, but these two injuries can slow it down dramatically. So it’s always best to have a conscious and breathing victim.
CPR caused drama through all the boys. There were ‘dolls’ to practice on, but they all happened to be male – which made all but a few boys refuse to practice. Chris was okay doing it – he’d grown up on a farm, he had done far worse things – like sticking his hand up a cow’s – no idea what to call it – to inseminate it.
The boys, especially John and James laughed as Chris and the others who were willing to participate. Their words weren’t kind and I’m not going to repeat them. Funny thing is, Nate turned around while they were harassing Matt and yelled at them. “At least he’s trying. He’s not going to fail like you are.”
Failing survival was always thought of as a kid who was a total loser. Why? Because it’s always viewed as a goof off class – until you take it. Only those who are going to be hunters are required to take it every year. I know I said it was required before, but I was trained to be a hunter. But someone like Dorian who was never going to be a hunter only took survival once. And they don’t get dropped off in the middle of the woods before they turn 18 so they can complete the biggest test of their lives – surviving alone.
They take a group of kids up into the middle of the Rocky Mountains with nothing but what they can carry by helicopter and drop them off in pairs with the only objective of finding your way back to HQ in Boulder.
I’ll tell that story one day.
Dylan and Trent let those in their groups go when they wouldn’t practice. They didn’t care if they learned or not, but I did. Thankfully I only had my drama queen, Bob, who wouldn’t participate. And he sat there for about two hours – starving and drenched from the rain cause guess what it started to pour. About 20 minutes into the storm it started to hail. He did his thing quickly – and perfectly I might add, before running to cover under the nearest wayward pine. The boy had at least listened. I was proud. Sad he was stubborn, but he did the job.
Bob, had taken to sitting with others not with the rest of his group. I beckoned him over and he grudgingly came. If you stay over here I’ll make sure you stay warm tonight, that rain gave you a chill you’ve yet to shake.
He frowned, “I’m not human, I can’t get sick.”
I nodded. “I know. But hypothermia can still kill a Venatori.”
I wrapped warm air around him and his eyes widened in realization. He didn’t take long before he had his things in that warm spot and was wrapping up in his sleeping bag. I heard him mumble, “Thanks,’ before he drifted off into slumber.
The boys were starting to notice that the rations were dwindling. Tomorrow there would only be enough for breakfast. A great many of the boys were in denial that we would let them starve. They were right about that, but you can go seven days without food before you were really dying, and for a Venatori that time was even longer. After breakfast, they would begin learning how to trap and fish. From this point out, they would have to eat what they caught. In a few days we’d teach them how to hunt, but there were a few steps we needed before we taught them that. Like how not to get lost in the woods.
Sage called and let me know Margo had done as I asked. My love was smiling brightly at me and I even got a chance to speak to Drake, who happened to get up right as we were about to say good-bye. It was good seeing my orange-eyed little dragon. I missed him as much as I missed Sage.
Tomorrow is another day. Matt and I also had a heart to heart. I was grateful to know the boy had no desires angled my direction. He confided his fancies but they aren’t mine to reveal. But we also had a talk about who had abused his power. He didn’t have any better childhood than I did. His mentor was an erratic firestarter. His mother was erratic. Many of the Erudite Magnus were – those would were not naturally gifted but could be taught to bend an element.
Matt could see all four elements. He saw patterns like I did, and he had his own trick for turning it off. But the curious thing was that every single one of those who abused Matt’s power did so with ‘love’. It was a touch, a comforting hand. They always extended it to Matt. He said it was the first time he’d ever comforted someone else when he touched me. He didn’t know any other way – other than to touch me. Thankfully, I don’t lose control often, and I don’t mind the touchy feely aspects of pack life. Even Sage likes to have Drake in bed, touching him. Our own little pack forming. I didn’t let Matt in on that preview of my life, I need to talk with Sage first, but Matt needs a friend, he needs the loving environment he’s not getting from his own family. I don’t have a problem giving him what he needs.
I should sleep – or at least try to. Tomorrow will be a long day.