A bright ray of the morning sun was burning in her eyes, as she slowly started to wake up again. On the other hand, was it morning, actually? She had no Idea. The small slit of her eyes she had opened just a few seconds ago started to close again, as she tried to lift her body for a refreshing stretch. However, she was excessively tired yet. All she was able to lift was her head. With her eyes opened completely by now, she looked at her surroundings. It was the same as it had always been. The dark and cool walls of the cave surrounding her, some dried grass blow her to make it more comfortable for her and a small hole beyond her, letting the rays of the sun shine on her.
She slowly rose her head up, to look right into the light. It was as bright and burning as always. Warming her black fur, it kept on shining every day, lightening up and burning everything that was in its way.
Silently she sighed. Yes, she became more depressive and thoughtfully these days. Nevertheless, what else was there to do than just lying somewhere around here, in this small cave, with no way to get out? Oh, how she hated these gray walls, letting nothing but coolness into her and the cave itself.
Since always she'd been locked up here...
It was all her fathers fault. She didn't blame him for taking this decision, though. He was just worried about her, that's all. However, this was certainly not the right way to protect someone. Especially not for a wolf. She often had the urge just to run around somewhere or go playing somewhere with somebody. Impossible. Her father never made exceptions.
Another sigh passed her throat. She decided to get up. Slowly her body was rising and she prepared for a long stretch, when she suddenly heard a voice saying: „Zita? Are you in there?" She refused to answer questions like these. Where else was she supposed to be, god dammed!? „Yes, I am", she responded, annoyed and still sleepy. The voice was easy to recognize.
It was Shadow, her guardian, her protector how her father used to call him. He was supposed to protect her from dangers from outside. However, it was the right decision. He was the Beta after all, also very strong and fast. He was a good friend of her father, they met a couple of years ago and he smit to him and her mother. He was a real loyal servant, a good hunter and fighter as well...
Slowly the giant rock, which was blocking the way to the outside, was pushed aside by him. As soon as the hole was big enough, three barking wolves entered the cave, running straight toward her. There was no doubt that these were her three brothers, Huor, Theala and Inosolan. All three of them were approaching her, ready to fulfill a body check.
The fastest of them was Huor, the most active of them. His yellow-ish fur seemed sandy in the shadows of the cave. Right behind him there was Theala, her favorite brother, the quietest one, but always good for a play fight. He also was the one who looked mostly like her, except for his brown belly fur. Third in the party was Inosolan, definitely the most aggressive, most presumptuous and most snotty brother she had. Nevertheless, it was her brother after all, and even if he was always looking for a fight, he at least kept her entertained.
A great smile was forming on her snout and seeing them running towards her made her want to run as well and she couldn't help herself but running straight into them. Before she even reached them, Huor started to jump and leapt right into her. Zita, not really realizing what her brother was about to do, stopped a few steps before him and watched him fall directly on her body. Together with him, she fell down. The hit wasn't that painful, actually she didn't feel anything at all. As soon as both of them landed on the hard stone ground, she busted out laughing, happy about the little difference from just sitting-around-doing-nothing-or-sleeping-things she did all day. It didn't take her other brothers that long to catch up with Huor and just starting to push her off his sister and starting barking, snarling and snapping at each other, just for the fun. On the other hand it didn't take Zita that long to join all the three of them. After a few seconds of joking around, she stopped confused and looked around her. Wasn't there somebody missing?
„Is something wrong?", Theala asked panting, still jumping around and wagging.
„Well, it's just...", she started, but now that the rock was pushed aside completely, she saw a smaller yellow figure approaching her. It was her little brother, Shane. Her youngest brother, only born a few weeks ago, looking exactly like Huor did and being just as hyperactive as he is. He even copied Huor with his tongue always hanging outside his mouth! Of course, he wasn't as fast as his older brothers with his short legs, he wasn't even able to talk properly. It was only naturally that he needed some more time, even if he was already running. (Not that it bothered him very much)
Zita had to smile again when she saw him approaching.
„Nothing, everything's alright.", she assured Theala, looking at him again then, noticing that he had stopped to jump around. Theala shrugged and Zita prepared for another game of tag with him.
„Alright boys, get out now!", a familiar voice said and all of the four siblings were looking at the exit now. Well, all except of Shane, was had finally arrived and started to climb the fur-pile that was made of Huor and Inosolan, wagging and barking. Shadow started to come in sight, standing in the middle of the exit, his tail pulled up high.
„You know it's not actually your time yet, and I'm the one getting punished in the end. Get out of here now!", he said in a rather soft, yet meaningful voice. Their ears dropping, the three brothers went outside, rather walking than running, as it was usual.
„See you later, Sis...", Huor said, just before he was outside the cave.
„Sorry guys!" was the excuse Zita gave them, trying to put on a smile. Shadow was looking after them for a second, and then let out an annoyed sigh. Then he went to the other side and vanished there for a second. Zita started to giggle a bit and followed him out.
„What is it? Is your job to much stress for you?" As she pepped out of the cave and looked at the left, there was Shadow picking up the hint-leg of some hoofed mammal, an elk probably. Apparently, it was lunchtime.
„Not at all", Shadow replied with a filled snout, as he had lifted the animal's leg and was heading for the cave again. „Get back inside!", he ordered her while walking past her. Zita was rolling her eyes and followed him back in. He was laying the animal's leg next to her dried grass. The little light source made his silver-white fur shine and sparkle, which made a beautiful combination with his purple eyes. He looked back at her when he had dropped the food on the ground. „What?", he asked and Zita was realizing that she was staring. „Ah, never mind.", she answered. Slowly she walked to him, rather looking at the food than him, but having something else in mind.
„Sooo... How are things outside?", she asked, putting a wide smile on and sitting down in front of him. Shadows eyes got smaller, investigating her a little. She now put on a grin and Shadow knew right away, what she was talking about.
„Oh no, not again, not this time!", he said rather loud and was heading for the exit again. „Oh, Shadow, please, just now! I promise I'll never ask you again!", she said, pleading as he was walking past her. „That's what you said the last time as well!", Shadow protested. „And the time before that. And before that. And before that..." He could've gone on forever, but he decided to stop. The female wolf wasn't stupid and he knew she got it. Zita looked rather confused now. „But this'll be the last time, really!" „This is also what you said last time!" The last step out of the cave turned into a jump as he prepared to push the rock back. Zita was running for it and stood inside the exit.
„Oh, come on Shadow, please!", she said again, now with a rather sad voice, hoping it might soften him. „No!", Shadow replied. „But..." Zita started, but Shadow was right in front of her, screaming „NO!" right into her face, so that she stepped a few steps behind. Also because she was once more surprised by his speed. Shadow, surprised by his loud voice as well, sighed and tried it again. „No Zita. You know you're not allowed to and you know it's to dangerous." „No, it's not!", she protested, holding her tail up. „You know yourself that I was outside a few time already, and guess what, I'm still alive!" „Yet!", Shadow replied, now more serious. He sighed once more. „You know it was your father, not me who locked you up here." „So you could actually care less!" „I'm just following Orders!" „So what!" „No!" Again, a sigh escaped his throat and he let his head fall down. He took a new breath and raised his head again. „So?" Zita was waiting for another try of his.
„You know why you're up here." Zita suddenly got quiet. „And you also know what happened that time. And you know what happened to your friends." Zita swallowed once. She completely forgot about that.
„So please...", Shadow said. „I'm just concerned about you as your father is. ...Okay, maybe he's a little more...", the second sentence was merely a whisper, „But please understand that we're doing that for your safety only. It's for your best, really." Zita was quiet for a while. „But... I..." She really didn't have anything left to say.
„Alright. And now go and take your food, or flies will get it first." She didn't answer on that one. Shadow vanished to the left and pushed the rock in front of the exit again. As the Rock was in front of the cave again, she heard Shadow walk away.
Zita sat in front of the rock for a while. This was just unfair! Why wasn't she allowed to go out at least once a day or something? Shadow was most of the time fine with her to go out, at least at certain times, when nobody would notice. It wasn't that she wasn't able to sneak out for here herself sometimes, but it was simply easier when someone else was around and the probability that someone caught her was also smaller.
And the story about her friends... Ah well, as far as she knew, or as far as it was told to her, her friends got killed by humans when she was just a puppy, she was probably was old as Shane was now. She could've been killed too, if her father didn't help her. It was too late for her two friends though, she didn't even remember their names. Ah well...
She sighed, too and turned around to look at the food Shadow brought her. She smelled the fresh blood and her stomach started to growl. She really had to eat something now.