"They're so beautiful." Andrea said softly. The unicorns didn't seem to be paying much attention to them anymore.
"I don't think I've ever seen them this close before..." Archie whispered. "Have you, Scruffy?" Scruffy shook his head.
"Not alive, at least." He replied with a frown. Andrea looked startled.
"What do you mean?" She asked in an urgent whisper.
"Remember how I told you that Scruffy thought he smelled something dead before we found you?" Archie asked. Andrea nodded. "After we brought you back to our camp and took care of you, Scruffy went looking for it. He was going to bury whatever it was-"
"Mostly because of the stink." Scruffy interrupted, looking away. Archie rolled his eyes.
"He's such a softy under all the fur." Archie sighed then continued. "Anyways, he found it, and it was a dead unicorn." Andrea gasped and put her hand over her mouth.
"Who would kill a unicorn? And why?" Scruffy shrugged in reply.
"Well, the why is pretty easy. See, unicorns have magical blood. And if you drink it, it can save you from death. Even if you're knocking on death's door, it can save you." Archie explained.
"So, it's like some super healing potion?" Andrea asked Archie.
"Yes, that's one way to look at it..." He replied slowly. "But it doesn't come for free... Drinking a unicorn's blood puts a curse on you. A curse where you're only able to live a 'half-life'." Archie finished quietly and solemnly.
"What's a 'half-life'?" Andrea asked in a whisper. Archie shrugged.
"I suppose it would be a life of... Pain." He replied simply. "I don't know beyond that."
"Why would you do something like that, though? I think I'd rather die than live a half-life..." Andrea said as she rested her head on her knees.
"If you're really desperate and want to live, then I guess you'd do it. Well, I wouldn't, and you wouldn't, but someone who doesn't care and wants to live would." Scruffy said quickly.
"I actually have an idea on who would want to..." Archie began slowly. Scruffy and Andrea both looked at him with confused expressions on their faces. "Do you remember anything at all from last night? Because I'm wondering if maybe you were pulled in here by another human. Not a creature. And I'm wondering if maybe you fought back hard enough to seriously wound the person trying to kidnap you." He explained slowly. Andrea looked down at the clear water in the lake, focusing on the stones at the bottom of it.
"I remember being with my friend Albus... And he turned around for a second, and something grabbed me. They were hands, so it was at least partially human. And I could only let out a little scream before I couldn't talk anymore..."
"A silencing spell." Scruffy cut in quickly. Archie nodded before Andrea continued.
"Then I got dragged away... And it all went black for a while, then I heard someone say some spell and...I said something...then they screamed..." Andrea finished slowly.
"What did you say?" Archie asked quickly.
"I don't know... I can't remember all of it..."
"Memory charm?" Scruffy whispered. Archie shook his head.
"Have to be a partial one, but even then they wouldn't be able to pick and choose what she remembered. Just what she forgot past a certain amount of time..." He replied with a thoughtful look on his face. Andrea glanced up from the rocks at the bottom of the lake and gasped as she noticed the unicorns were gone.
"Oh... They left..." She said softly. Scruffy chuckled.
"They have a tendency to do that." He said with a smile. Andrea bent over the water and peered into the lake. It was crystal clear...
"Is the water safe to touch?" She asked.
"Well, I hope so! Archie and I been swimin' in there for I don't know how long." Scruffy replied.
"Scruffy splashes like there's no tomorrow." Archie said with a glare at his companion. Scruffy smiled like a schoolboy who just got away with a prank. Andrea shrugged then reached into the water and pulled out a handful of rocks. She began looking at them one by one. Some of them looked like gems and others looked like regular rocks... Except that they were all so smooth. Andrea picked up one and looked at it closely. It had markings on it. She wondered if the markings on it had been carved in or were some kind of a fossil... She put the rocks in the pocket of her robe then dried her hands off on her shirt.
"Um, I think I'm getting a bit hungry..." Andrea said softly. Scruffy smiled wide.
"Perfect! I get to show you my skills at catching fish!" Scruffy said with eagerness in his voice. Andrea giggled and realized she was actually starting to like these two... But she wasn't going to let her guard down completely. After all... One of them was still a werewolf.