Mid-autumn howls and yowls, shapeshifter lovers.
Yep, a shout out to all those Turkey shapeshifters. Watch out!
Okay then, this flash scene is a spinoff from Pat's flash from yesterday. However, it all began with a previous flash scene I wrote, titled:
The Wide Open Invitation of the Montana Sky... And the Resurrected Mammoth...
From high on a mountain perch, the man filmed the flying horse as she cavorted in the skies. He'd been tracking her for the last year, in human form and horse form. Now finally, as her coat blazed a beautiful shade of red beneath the bright sun, he'd been able to capture the not-myth filly in flight.
No one would believe him, of course. Despite his evidence. Photoshop and the tech-wonders of the movie industry had seen to that.
He'd already made his peace with that reality. However, he had other plans. A daring one at that.
The Man With the Camera
Adrenaline spiked through Zaedro, aka John P. Varner. He steadied the super expensive camera equipped with high-end night photo capability. Breathe, he mentally ordered. It was real, what he witnessed through the long-range lens.
He'd hit the most gigundis jackpot following Syprelli, the flying horse. Yep, he was shit-happy in the middle of a shapeshifter goldmine, as he thought of Talbot's Peak, Montana.
And the supernatural natives didn't harass humans as long they minded their manners, and their own business -- as he'd observed over the course of a month or so.
Zaedro sure hoped for his sake that town policy continued. 'Course, he didn't open his big fat trap and talk about being merely human, either.
No... with a smile he discussed his love of wildlife photography at Java Joe's, the coffee shop, then acted on all the tips he was given. Not only that, he shared his photos with anyone who showed an interest. Maintaining a cover was damn critical.
For an instant, Zaedro shuddered violently inside at the thought of what the magnificent white tiger would do to him -- he'd be a bloody pile of hamburger meat -- or what the beautiful gyrfalcon would do to him with those wicked talons of hers, that hooked beak, if they knew his camera ran nonstop recording every moment of their meeting.
Obviously, they knew each other. The falcon dive-bombed switching to her human form as she lightly landed on her feet. Zaedro stopped his sharp intake of breath, and automatically checked for the slight sparkle on the lens that let him know the tech keeping him invisible still worked.
Yeah, baby, here we go. His fear transmuted to extreme excitement -- what he lived for these days -- as he watched the enormous tiger morph to a WWF-esque fighter.
Zaedro could care less about listening in on their clandestine meeting. He wasn't a damn effing spy. Nor did he give an 'f' about proving the existence of shapeshifters.
Not anymore. Once, that had been his goal.
Now, he served the artist in him. Only. No use getting on the train to crazyville. Straight jackets weren't his thing. Nor were mind-clouding drugs.
He preferred full, crystal-clear clarity of thought and feeling as he photographed his subjects. Not to mention, he got to live the fantasy for real. As he did now.
However, as a fantasy artist, somewhat known and in the middle of the pack, Zaedro could use his surreptitious photos of shapeshifters, and other mythical but real creatures, to create his beloved art pieces.
He drank in the scene before him as if he'd jogged miles dehydrating himself. All the while, future works of art already formed in his mind.
But as the gyrefalcon shifted in a glorious spread of blurring colors and emerging feathers, he silently gasped in absolute appreciation. God, she was gorgeous as bird of prey, and as naked woman.
Zaedro zoomed in on the white tiger man's hand on her wing. What a freaking fantastic image! He couldn't wait to get back to his makeshift studio.
"I can see you." The quiet words spoken behind him, jolted Zaedro to his core like lightning striking his solar plexus. Yet, he barely moved. He'd trained himself well over the years.
"I can see through that techno field you're shielding yourself with," the clearly feminine voice calmly stated.
On instinct, the one surging up from his gut, Zaedro imitated her tone, saying, "Busted."
"Who are you shooting?" she asked, obviously curious. And obviously persistent.
Zaedro frowned, his mind spinning ten thousand miles a minute. So, she hadn't seen his subjects. That was to the good.
With a resigned sigh, he switched off the small invisibility device. Camera in hand, Zaedro spun around... only to see no one. Atop the mayor's mansion, all that greeted him was pitch blackness.
A tinkle of laughter erupted a good twenty feet away. "Good trick, whoever you are. I can't see through your invisibility."
"What's your name?" the disembodied voice asked, now to his left instead of his right.
Chills seized Zaedro's spine. Yet no drop in temp occurred -- indicating the presence of a ghost. "Zaedro. What's yours?" When in doubt, play along.
"You didn't answer my question. Who or what were you photographing?"
"Ah... if I told you that, it would spoil the surprise."
"I like my fantasy art to be 'surprising'." Zaedro's brows shot upward. Dammit! He castigated himself for blowing his cover.
The soft puff of sound seemed to brush against his face. Grabbing his nerves by their nano, nonexistent balls, Zaedro asked, "Would you like to be featured in one of my paintings?"
"I'll bet you're beautiful." Zaedro bit his bottom lip, stayed still, and waited. All while his stomach did hand springs worthy of an Olympic gymnast.
"You've done this a lot, haven't you? Photographing us."
"Us?" He leaped like he imagined the white tiger would leap on prey. Or an enemy.
"Hmm...I'll have to look at your art first. You are on the internet, right?"
"Right." Zaedro hesitated, trying to figure out an angle that would give him an advantage. Nothing. "Just search my name." He spelled it for her, and hoped like hell he wouldn't be forced to leave Talbot's Peak. But if it got out, what he was really photographing... well, he would be toast or a roast -- given he'd seen a couple of dragons in the area, and had their images on the site.
"Kassidy," the melodic tinkly voice said. "My name."
"Lovely name. How lovely are you in person?"
His mouth dried out completely, even as laughter whirled around Zaedro. Definitely not evil, he decided. Yet powerful. Like a rising windstorm.
"See you around." Her bantering words had a definite slicing edge.
A faint flash of light streaked from Zaedro and was soon lost to the night. His stomach clenched hard as a fist.
Hell's bells, how much trouble was he in?
Zaedro's jaw tightened with determination. Damn the hell no! He was not leaving this fantastical shapeshifter town. Not yet, anyway.
But oh how the paranormal tide had turned against him. Instead of hunting with his camera. Now he was the one hunted. But, by what? He owned not an effing clue.
Still... his camera had been on the entire time. Zaedro smiled.
Wishing you love and passion on the wild side ...
Savanna Kougar ~ Run on the Wild Side of Romance