Driving through the quite busy street, Mandy's mind went back to that faithful night when Drake, Irianda's Dad sacrificed his life to save her and that of their daughter. Running through the thick night forest with her daughter to safety as Drake battled with the forces from his clan, trading his life for them.
He was a well built man in his mid 20s. He was of an average height and his chestnut coloured hair coupled with his oval face, sky blue eyes and pointed nose were just perfect to fit his looks. Irianda was a total replica of him but she was by then just an infant so didn't really see much of him. Just heard a few stories from her mother and a picture to go with.
Though Drake was a man of few words, he had this sweet and warm demeanor which emphasized on his personality.
Little did Mandy know about his true identity when they got together some few years back but everything came to bare after Mandy got pregnant with Irianda.
They had met on one of Mandy's adventurous travels since she was a travelling photography and a PD of documentary on Phoenix TV, an outstanding broadcasting station in Seoul. She was in charge of all kinds of documentary, being it wildlife, tradition and culture, among others.
Drake was enticed by this human's sweet smile, witty and care free personality which was on his path, something to trade for..
He had switched into his human form on one of his usual days, joining the commoners in the main township of Capernaum, a small town bedded along the south coast known for it's rich forestry, wildlife and cultural values.
It was a fine afternoon, the sun was dazzling up in the sky, blessing it's subjects with it's rays. Mandy had heard a lot about the town so went there with her team to learn from the folks and also do a little documentary about them.
She was going about her duty when Drake saw her from a far. It was a love at first sight. He kept monitoring her from there until she finally came to him.
Their relationship didn't really kick start from there but gradually as the weeks which Mandy spent in the town around Drake went by, they got together.
For the love that Drake had for Mandy, he abandoned his responsibility as the Lord of his clan and master of the forest and went after the human to make a new life but little did he know they were not fated to be.
Their first few years as couple were peaceful, thinking he could keep his real identity forever but everything took a turn when Mandy got pregnant with Irianda.
Drake broke the rule of not getting involved with humans so his clan came after him. It was then that Mandy found out the truth. They had wanted to take her life and that of her unborn child. But Drake did all he could to keep them safe until Mandy put to birth.
They did well hiding themselves for the first few months but that was not for long. Drake was in his study working on his laptop when his ear twitched, hearing voices from a distance then his nose picked up the smell. All his senses being on edge as he instinctively jerked up from his desk.
"Mandy, Irianda." He grumbled to himself.
Not wasting another second, he rushed out into the hall to meet Mandy seated in the sofa, going through some documentational research she had made.
"Mandy," He uttered making her looked up at him while he trod over to her. "You have to leave now." He hastily added as Mandy sprang up from her seat. "You need to get Irianda away from here. You two need to go now."
From his words, Mandy knew from instinct what he meant. "What about you?" She asked as her brow furrowed with concern.
"This is not the time dear." He snapped in, hurrying Mandy up to Irianda's room. They hastily packed some few clothes, got Irianda and hurried out of the room to the hall. Drake quickly rushed to the mini table in the right corner of the room, took the car keys and brought it to Mandy.
The look in her face was enough to tell how worried she was. Drake sighed, curbing her face.
"This is not just going to end if I don't end it." He said, his eyes betraying the fear he was holding inside him. "The safety of you two is my greatest fear." He added while he looked down at Irianda in her mother's arms, giving her a kiss on the forehead. "You two need to go now." He continued.
By now, Mandy just stared at him teary eyed. "Promise me you two are going to be safe." Drake requested.
"Why don't you come with us?" Mandy queried as her tears freely flowed.
Drake slightly shook his head, wiping the tears with his hand. "I promised to protect you two. No need to worry about me. Go now." He added, kissing Mandy before guiding them to exit through the back door.
Just when she had gotten to the car, she heard a huge bang on the door, breaking in. Followed by swift and wild movements coupled with a full blast and brassy sound of things scattering here and there.
Mandy hurriedly got into the car with her baby and sped off.
The only thought running through her mind at that moment was saving her baby.
For Drake, that was the last she saw of him and she was willing to keep her side of the promise which she had done up till now.
Though many years had already past, everything kept coming back to her like it was just yesterday.
"Hey Mandy, " Leticia snapped, bringing her back to reality. Mandy swiftly glanced at her with a quizzical look. "Where were you?" Leticia went on whiles Mandy balanced her focus between the road and her, making sure not to run into something. "You've been absent minded for the past 30mins." She lamented.
"Sorry dear, I was just thinking." She replied with her gaze still fixed on the road.
"Hm..?" Leticia muttered sceptically. "Are you sure is not something about your past?" She inquired but her anxiety didn't give her the chance to let Mandy answer the question. "You should snap out of it already." She instinctively added.
Mandy glanced at her and slightly shook her head. "Can you stop nagging me already?" She uttered whiles turning her gaze back to the road. "I'm just glad they found Irianda on time. She might have been so scared and confused." She added with a faint smile.
Leticia stared at her friend for some seconds and robbed her right shoulder whiles her mouth curved into an encouraging smile.
Their car raced among few cars through to the high streets, taking up the route to the forest reservation the school went for the camp.