It is getting closer, and to let people know that I am thinking of them, I am posting the first chapter of Water Bonded. Enjoy.
“Here they come.” It sounded like a message being carried on the wind to Adriel and Hawk. It made them wonder who “they” were, those who the people on the sidelines were speaking of with such reverence. The question was soon answered as everyone at the game gravitated towards the edge of the ocean.
There were large breakers rolling in from the ocean, those were wildly crashing in on the reefs that protected the beach where the people had gathered. Further out, more waves were gathering to head inwards in ways that were only inviting to the brave, foolish, or surfers who reveled in this type of sport. At this moment, the ocean, which had seemed to be rough earlier, now looked dangerous, and those who were still in the water were coming in before things got worse.
The moans, groans, and cheers from the crowds on the beach told of each wipeout, each successful recovery, and the awe they felt for those whom they considered brave enough to attempt to challenge the elements. It seemed to be calm on shore, but this was only because of the cliffs and reefs that made this beach popular. The natural protection on this part of the shoreline sheltered the land as well as the crowds.
Adriel and Hawk could have told those out on the water that there was little chance they would be able to master the power held in the waves they were attempting to ride. The two friends had Water Elf blood in their veins, and they knew what they were looking at. These waves would only answer to the strongest of wills, and those existed only amongst sea-dwellers like their ancestors. It was a gift that had been weakened in Hawk and Adriel because of their shared Light Elven ancestry, but it was still strong enough to allow them to use if necessary.
Hawk pointed at two surfers who were riding a rogue wave in from far out at sea. As he did so, Hawk asked the person beside him. “Are these the two whom everyone are cheering for?”
Even as he asked, Hawk could only question how it was possible for anyone around him to be able to identify the surfers from so far away. Even he was having a difficult time seeing them, and he was Elven.
The person beside Hawk smiled as she danced from one foot to the other in her excitement. “Yes, Thea and Caia. Aren’t they wonderful? Now we will see who will win this tournament. Our star players are about to arrive.”
Hawk looked at the excited girl by his side in disbelief. Surely this person didn’t believe two new players could make that much of a difference. The girls had been getting their butts handed to them by the men’s team only moments ago, and they been bemoaning their chances of recovering their losses. Now, the women were dancing around, cheering, and laughing in glee as if their victory was a sure thing. This didn’t make much sense to Hawk.
Adriel seemed to be as mesmerized as the rest of the men who were watching the spectacle. He leaned close to Hawk and commented, “They are magnificent. Watch how they play with the curl of that wave, catching each of the moods, and making that work in their favor. I want to meet those women, whomever they are.”
Hawk replied. “From all accounts I have heard, we will get that chance. It seems those two girls will be joining the woman’s team when they arrive, and it is the reason the ladies are celebrating.”
Hawk’s comment caught Adriel’s attention. “Really? What difference could those two make? We already have two games won, and the third as good as done for our side.”
Hawk admitted. “I don’t know, but the girls’ team suddenly seem very confident of their chances. I get the impression things are about to get very interesting.”
As the two surfers Adriel and Hawk had been looking at got closer, all conversations stopped as the girls finished riding the wave. When the surfers had gotten as close to shore as was possible, they paddled their boards the rest of the way. As entrances went, Adriel and Hawk felt the two girls had made as good a one as was possible. Now it was time to finish the game to see what difference their participation would make.
Before the surfers had been noticed, Hawk and Adriel had been indulging in a bit of fun, playing a game of volleyball on the beach. The young men and women who formed the teams all looked to be in the same age group. The games had started as a lighthearted challenge and then escalated when more teams joined in to see who would end up on top. They were now in the middle of a championship match that would end what had become a full-scale tournament. What astounded Adriel and Hawk was that everyone seemed to expect these two newcomers to take over from a couple of the players who had made up part of the girls’ team. Just who did they think they were to assume this was right? The idea that anyone believed they had the right to usurp two positions from players who had proven their worth upon their arrival bothered Adriel and Hawk. To them this wasn’t fair to the other girls who had helped to get the team this far.
With a surge of welcoming cheers, the crowd that had been watching the two surfers moved forward to greet them. A couple of the young men immediately took possession of the surfboards the two girls were carrying out of the water, while the girls from the team Hawk and Adriel had been playing against surrounded the swimmers to usher them towards the court.
One of the young men who had been playing on Hawk and Adriel’s team gave a groan as he declared, “There go all of our chances to win.”
Hawk was the first to get shutdown by his teammates when he tried to instill some spirit back into them. “They are only two girls, what difference can they make to us? We have the tournament in the bag.”
Several side-glances from the other men told Hawk that no one believed what he had to say for a moment.
Adriel, to support his friend, added. “I will grant you the girls are pretty to look at, which can be distracting, but surely they can’t make that much of a difference.”
Only two words came back to Adriel and Hawk from one of the men on the team. “Watch them.”
Fine, Hawk and Adriel agreed, they would, but they couldn’t believe that two slightly built human girls would make that big of a difference. They also couldn’t see what the other players found so intimidating about them. It would be different if they were Elves, but Humans? What were these men afraid of?
With a confidence no one else on Adriel and Hawk’s team seemed to share, Hawk called out. “Remember men, they are only girls. We have the match already won by all standards.”
Both teams heard the arrogance of Hawk’s remark. What they didn’t notice was how the smiles that Hawk and Adriel wore moments before slowly disappeared when the two girls they were taunting turned to face them. These were not human girls, they were Elven, and Hawk and Adriel knew that winning was going to be no easy task.
To make things even more complicated, the moment eye contact was made between them, the four combatants froze for all of a moment. They knew what they were looking at, and as the whistle to action blew, the girls frowned in irritation. It was time for them to focus their attention on the game, but it was going to be difficult, for these were their Life Mates. They were going to have to control their reactions to the bonds. That matter had to be dealt with at a later time, much later.