Continued from HERE:
As one would expect the woods main commodity was trees. There existed all kinds bark and species running the gamut from enchanted to plain old oak, and many creatures including humans got their resources from them. Most knew that there was always some sort of price one had to pay in order to leave unharmed, but every once in a while someone foolish would think they could take something for nothing and they paid dearly for it.
Luckily those sort of intricacies were Cassia’s specialty, as she had been explaining to Reva for the past hour.
“So that’s why my mother doesn’t work with that particular type of birch anymore,” Cassia concluded as they finally reached another clearing.
“Fascinating,” Reva smiled weakly, not only bored out of her mind, but also tired as well. “If you don’t mind me asking, why are you telling me all this?”
“Well just because I’ve rarely left the tower, I don’t want you thinking I’m naive,” Cassia said choosing a small stump to rest on. “I also don’t want you making any reckless decisions. Most people who successfully navigate through the forest once start to get cocky.”
“Yes, well I’ve been doing this ever since I was a kid so, I think I’m good.” Cassia looked at Reva sympathetically and without meaning to found herself staring at Reva’s metal hand and forearm. “It doesn’t do tricks you know,” Reva shifted putting her cloak over her left side.
“I’m sorry, I just-”
“Don’t, alright. This happened when I was a kid, and believe me, the other guy is worse off.” Reva sat down on another odd looking stump and motioned her wolf companion forward. “So now that we’ve successfully wandered and narrowly avoided getting to know each other better, how do you propose we find your mother?” Now it was Cassia’s turn to shift uncomfortably.
“Well that’s just it,” she frowned. “She left about a week and half ago on her usual pilgrimage to her homeland. She gets the freshest ingredients for most of her spells there. The trip usually takes her a week with some magical help. For her to be off by even one day is highly atypical.”
“So are you suggesting we go to her homeland,” Reva said giving her wolf’s nose a pet as he settled next to her.
“I suppose I am, though I don’t know the magic way,” Cassia admitted. “On foot it’s a much longer journey. It might take us-” she bite her lip and continued softly-” almost a month”.
“I’m sorry what?”
“Almost a month, at the most,” Cassia avoided Reva’s gaze. The mood shifted, but a soft growl from the wolf interrupted the tension and put both girls on alert. Reva stood up and formed a defensive stance.
“Oye!” she shouted. “Who’s there!” There was a shuffling sound followed by a heavy grunt. Then the tree’s parted to reveal the intruder. Reva got out of position and rolled her eyes. “Oh you’ve got to be kidding me, where’s your sister?” The intruder, a young man a little older than Reva, looked up at her and rolled his eye’s in return. As if one cue said sister materialized from the foliage as well. Both siblings were tall and thick, though how much was muscle and how much was fat was anyone’s guess. The brother’s face was more round while his sister’s was more diamond in shape. If Reva were someone else, she might’ve been intimidated by their icy blue stare or the clear array of weapons on their belts, but she’d seen one of them naked on purpose and the other by accident and that made taking them seriously a bit harder.
“Reva,” the woman glared.
“Greta,” Reva smirked.
“Hans,” the man chimed in. “Now that we know we remembered our names, what exactly is going on here.” Hans eyed Cassia (who remained seated) suspiciously. Reva glided forward and stood protectively at Cassia’s side while her wolf did the same.
“It turns out you two were right,” Reva shrugged. “I’m not witch hunter, so I’ve hired a little help.”
**To be continued…
***Author’s notes: We’re back! Finally you get to meet the very obvious Hansel and Gretel. To be honest I changed Red and Rapunzel to Reva and Cassia because I wanted people to not think too much about other people’s versions of the characters and let them be their own iteration (as much as is possible). However I think Hansel and Gretel aren’t as popular and while them being witch hunter’s is hardly an original idea I felt just shortening their names was enough. I’ll possibly right from their POV next week.