Author: Fox Wild PM
Duncan Galt knows vampires exist. Unfortunately for him, they know he exists too. Preparing by day and hiding by night he needs the help of a beautiful and mysterious girl to survive and get his well deserved revenge. Death can be cruel, and messing with Duncan, the vampires find out just how true that statement can be.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst/Sci-Fi - Chapters: 18 - Words: 259,269 - Reviews: 3 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 5 - Updated: 04-26-13 - Published: 02-19-13 - id: 3102509
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The sky was getting dark. Clouds were rolling in. Looked like a good thunderstorm was about to blow. Nightfall would be in a couple hours. Duncan had just finished loading his purchases into his truck. Days like this he was glad he made the investment of a cover for the box.
Duncan released the straps that held the box cover on the truck, neatly rolled up and unfurled it down the box. Looking at the sky briefly he began snapping the cover over its payload. He'd be home well before sundown, but he would defiantly be carrying in his goods in the rain. A cool wind lapped at Duncan's arms as the snaps grasped each other with their 'click' sound. He acknowledged the smell of rain and looked towards the black end of the grey sky.
'This is going to be a big one.' He heard someone say.
'Yah, a real turd floater for sure.' Another voice replied.
They went on.
'Huge low pressure ridge the weatherman said.'
'May get a couple inches, we sure could use the rain, as long as there ain't any flash flooding.'
'My south field is going to be a mud pit for sure.'
'Yah, I best be gittin on home, get the horses inside.'
'Catch ya letter Marty.'
'Take care Hank.'
Duncan finished with the snaps. 'Right you are, going to be a real turd floater.' He thought to himself, overhearing the two talking. He checked NOAA this morning, storm was almost right on time.
He looked around the small town. Watching people scurrying about making ready for the approaching weather about to hit them. Even though he had been a neighboring resident for some 8 years now, only a few people he actually knew. Everyone seemed to know him though. Small towns loved to talk. He knew there was a mystery about him. It wasn't odd so much that he didn't frequent town much, most of the families from the country only made a weekly or biweekly trip to town. His were more of a monthly trip, he had most of his needs delivered. He wasn't fond of leaving his property.
'She doesn't fit in around here.' He thought to himself, spotting a young girl, dressed in black denim and leather with silver snaps and buckles showing on the surface of her clothing. Her skin was paste white, hair jet black. Though he couldn't see them from this distance, there was something about her eyes. He could feel them on him. She had jewelry in her face. New York gothic style. Defiantly not from around here.
He looked away and hurried around the back of the truck to the drivers side, looking back to her once as he moved. Her eyes were still on him and she was moving in his direction from across the street and about a block down.
Once at the cab he opened the door quickly and reached behind the bench seat, pushing the leaver behind the seat down to release it and folding forward; grabbing the sawed off 4-10 shotgun from its custom made holster on the back wall of the truck. Duncan cocked the gun and pulled it up, out of sight of anyone nearby and keeping it behind the frame of the doorway of the truck. He then looked back towards where the girl should be. He quickly looked around the area near where she was. Then across the street from where she was or should have been based on how fast she was walking.
"Is that legal length?" Duncan heard a voice say. Turning and looking over the door of the truck, the Sheriff was standing at the front next to the open door. His eyes moved from the gun to Duncan.
Duncan looked back to the street behind him. Still nothing. He un-cocked the gun and shoved it back into the holster behind the seat and returned the seat to its upright position. "No." He said without looking back at the Sheriff and climbed into the truck.
The Sheriff's arm was atop the door but he quickly moved it when Duncan pulled the door to close it. The Sheriff moved directly across from the door as Duncan put his key in the ignition and cranked the truck to life. He could tell the Sheriff had his hands on his hips. Duncan looked forward, not acknowledging the Sheriff any further, put the truck in gear and drove off with the Sheriff looking after him.
'Its not sunset yet. I was over reacting.' Duncan thought to himself as he drove out of town. He looked at the now fully black sky. Rain was starting and thunder could be heard. 'They can't be out even in this light. They wouldn't even be up yet, despite the weather and the dark.' He assured himself. Duncan stomped the accelerator of the truck, it sprang to life shooting his speed up from the posted 55 to 140 in seconds. The radio couldn't be heard over the power plant under the hood and the oversized exhaust it exhaled though. He turned on the wipers and lights. It was getting very dark.
He glanced in the mirror and saw lights behind him. They were keeping pace with him, not diminishing in the distance. 'The Sheriff would have hit his cherry bombs by now if it were him.' Duncan thought. His turn was coming up soon. He slowed as he approached his turn. He took it at 60, watching the lights. The road normally would have been dust covered from him turning onto it, the main road was tar, his was dirt, the rain kept that down. He saw the Sheriff's car blow by the turn. He backed his hand away from the switches on the dash and put his attention back on the road ahead of him and accelerated hard. Without looking, he flipped the two switches on the dash and engaged the supercharger and nitrous. He felt an urgency to get home. It was too dark.
He turned into his driveway as the whine of the engine upgrades died down. It was a full downpour now. The storm had erupted into a full scaled thunder-boomer; high winds, raindrops the size of marbles and the night like sky lit by lightning. Actual sunset was still just over an hour away. Duncan stared at the clock on his dash radio a few seconds after he had parked in the garage. Putting the truck into gear he backed out of the garage and pulled right up to the house and backed the truck to the steps. He only undid the first two snaps on each side of the cover and dropped the tailgate. He jumped towards the door, unlocked it and propped the storm door open and began pitching his goods into the house. He was wasting no time. It was too dark. It was night dark, even though sunset hadn't happened yet, better to error on the side of caution.
He climbed into the box, under the cover and pulled the rest of his goods towards the tailgate and hurried them inside. He slammed the tailgate shut once done and locked the house, then quickly drove the truck to the garage leaving ruts from the effort in the yard. Closing the garage door, he didn't bother to re-snap the cover down. 'Good enough till morning' he said as he ran out of the garage, slamming the door and continuing on at a dead run to the front door of the house. He already had his keys in his hands and looked around in a distressed manner as he let himself in. The yard lights were already on. Too dark.
"Why didn't you stop him?" The deputy asked the Sheriff as they passed where Duncan Galt had turned off, rather abruptly. The deputy's face was excited and exasperated.
"Because, he was just on his way home." The Sheriff said in a growly voice.
The deputy looked forward with a confused look on his face, then over at the readout on the radar. "He was over 140 Sheriff, that's very reckless driving."
The Sheriff sighed, pursed his lips. "He was in a hurry to get home." He looked briefly over at the deputy, then back at the road. "And I don't want to know why." He finished.
The two continued down the road in silence for almost 5 minutes before the deputy spoke again. "What about the gun? You said it was chopped down to about a foot, for a shotgun, why didn't you take it from him and arrest him then?" His deputy asked this without looking at the Sheriff. He stared forward, his face set in an agitated serious manner.
The Sheriff chewed on his bottom lip. He could tell by the deputy's tone he was demanding an explanation, or else he'd be talking to the state office informing them of his failure to enforce the law, and talking to his union people too. He gave an angry exhale.
"James, " he started, his eyes glimmered slightly. "what I am about to tell you, can go no further than this car, I would rather not tell you, but if I don't you'll be crying to the state about how I didn't do my job properly and becoming even a bigger thorn in my ass than you already are." He looked over at the deputy. "We clear on that?" he asked, looking back at the road then back at the deputy waiting for his answer.
The deputy had an angry look on his face as he stared forward.
"I said are we clear? This never leaves this car."
"Yah, we're clear, Sheriff." The deputy said, finishing with a sour note.
"Mr. Galt, Duncan, he has a doctorate in bio sciences, some heavy stuff. He's no lightweight, he worked for the CIA, investigations, field agent. I've seen some of his files. Before he started his research in agriculture and his business in hydroponics and growing better crops, which has been very profitable for him, he worked in very sensitive areas. Very dangerous avenues, you get what I mean?"
"He was a federal agent, so?" The deputy replied.
"Listen you moron, he wasn't just an agent, sitting in some office, he was out in the field, he is very well trained, people like him don't spook easily. Back in town, he was spooked." The Sheriff looked over at the deputy who looked back at him, his face displayed his sore attitude.
"Sometimes kid, it's best just to walk away. I am the Sheriff and I'm smart enough to know when to keep my nose out of things, sometimes it's better if you don't know."
"I will be taking this to the union, and the state. You neglected your responsibilities and are afraid to do your job. That's the way I see it. That's what I'm going to tell the state." He replied.
"Do whatever you want James. You're just pissed I beat your daddy in the election is all. You've had it out for me since I took this job." The Sheriff pushed back on the steering wheel as he leaned back in his seat. "Been nothing but a pain in my ass, everything I do that you don't agree with, you take to the state or the union. If I could fire your ass I would, but according to the union, I don't have the grounds. I use my best judgment in situations, and you fight me every inch of the way. If you put your effort into doing your job and trying to understand why you might just make a good deputy. Instead, you aren't worth two squirts of piss as a deputy." The Sheriff ended.
"That's abuse of a subordinate right there Sheriff." The deputy said.
"Whatever you call it, it's the straight truth, you don't have to like the truth, doesn't change it any Jimmy." The Sheriff chuckled, he knew he hated being called 'Jimmy'.
"Tell you what Jimmy boy, you go ahead and investigate Mr. Galt, with my blessing, I'll turn over every file I have on him and the case is all yours." The Sheriff said with a smile as he looked over at him. They were almost back to their hometown now. Another 4 miles.
The deputy's eyes narrowed slightly. "Why the hell would you do that? This is a nothing investigation. It's an illegal gun. I confiscate it and arrest him. Case closed. I do a job you failed to. It would actually be good for me." The deputy looked over at the Sheriff. Suspicion on his face. "Why would you turn it over to me?" He asked.
The Sheriff guffawed. "It's not that simple, he had pulled the gun, in town. He was looking back at someone, or something." The Sheriff glanced over at his deputy. "You need to find out why. Why was he pulling the gun, you have a report that he had it out in town, you need to follow that up. Who or what was he planning on using it on. Why does he have it in the first place. There is a lot more to this than just a simple illegal gun, there is a target and a motive." The Sheriff wore a smile now.
"Fine." The deputy snorted. "That still doesn't answer why you would turn it over to me." He demanded.
"That's simple Jimmy." The Sheriff looked over then back to the road. "Don't you watch the movies? In cases like this, it's the nosy deputy that never comes back. Then its a state problem, not mine." The Sheriff looked back at his deputy and he tapped the brake to take the cruise control off. He was chuckling. Once he stopped his eerie chuckle he said "As a law enforcement officer, my job is to prevent trouble and deal with it when it happens, not to go out looking for it."
Duncan jumped over the supplies he had piled in the entry of his home only to jump back to the door to verify it was locked. He looked out the window. The rain was pouring down. Even the concrete slab in front of the door that was under the extension of the roof that gave the building a 6 foot by 6 foot square covered entry was completely wet. He looked intently around at the yard to the tree line, the rain made it hard to see even with the numerous yard lights that burned brightly. The yard had countless telephone poles planted in it. Only a few had lights mounted on them. The others had odd black devices that glimmered black in the light and rain.
Duncan made his way to his basement. It was not a typical basement, once down the stairs there was a short hall, maybe 4 foot that led through a steel door that resembled a vault or bulkhead door on a ship. The walls were very thick, as were the walls on the house. The room he entered into looked like a security control room, filled with monitors displaying all areas of the house and the yard around it, including the inside of the garage and the other 3 out buildings. He checked indicators on some panels, then pressed some buttons. Nodding at the displays 'good, good' he said and returned upstairs.
He checked his clock and nodded. Near the entry, with his packages still piled he opened a small hidden door in the wall that revealed a control panel. He pushed a button and there was the sound of motors and clacking. Steel curtains that looked like the doors of roll top desks quickly streamed down between the two layers of thick glass that formed the windows in the over a foot thick walls. They rolled to the bottom and the sound of hooks locking into them securing them could be heard ending with a muffled clunk.
He touched a few more buttons and other hidden panels opened in the walls around the room and the entire house with monitors behind them. They powered up and were more displays of security cameras around his property. "One hour till sunset." He said to the empty room and began putting his supplies away.
All the boxes were moved to the storage room and he had emptied most of them and put the contents in their proper places.
"DING DONG" Chimed through the house, followed by what sounded to be frantic pounding on his front door. Duncan stood quickly and froze in place. A shocked look mixed with horror on his face. Had he looked in a mirror he would have seen all the blood had drained from his face leaving it paste white.
"Who in the hell." He murmured. Duncan stepped without sound as he cautiously made his way to the front door. The door was of the same type as the door in the basement only with the appearance of a normal entry door of a house with a half light window in the front, only now it was a steel curtain and pin locked in place. The house was 'tank proof' by his design.
Duncan looked at the monitors next to the door. There were two. One showed the view at the front door, the other had a camera that panned around the area near the front door. He squinted as he looked at the monitor. He recognized the figure at the door. It was the paste white girl dressed in black from town. She had followed him here. Now he could see her strange eyes. Her lips had several rings in them, and her ears were covered in earrings of various types. There was one ring in her nose between her nostrils that had a fine link chain that went from her ear to the ring. All in a silver color. He could see her mouth moving as she pounded on the door, and she kept looking behind her as though something, or someone was coming for her. Her face showed true terror as she pounded. Duncan keyed on the external speaker.
"Help! Please help, let me in! Is anyone there?" She looked back and surveyed the area behind her. When she looked back her face was even more panicked. "Oh god, oh shit!" she half yelled then tried kicking the door in. Her foot hit the door a lot harder than he thought she could kick. Very much so.
"This is a reinforced door miss. You could drive a car into it and it wouldn't give. Who are you and what do you want?" Duncan asked and he looked to the other monitor and took control of the camera and panned it around the area behind her, to see what she was afraid of.
"Mister, please, let me in, I'm in danger, they are going to kill me please mister please help me, let me in!" Her voice pleaded, full of terror. It sounded very convincing.
Not seeing anything on the monitor, and checking his motion detectors he turned his attention back to the monitor with the young gothic girl on it.
"I must say, you do sound most convincing, however, I'm not buying it. There is nothing out there. You followed me here from town, now, you can go your way. Enjoy the rain." Duncan said coldly but with a smile on his face. He slid a hidden panel away from under the monitors. The panel had several controls on them, his finger was hovering over the one that was labeled 'Venus'.
Her eyes were not human looking. He moved the camera to get a closer look at her eyes. "You're not human, but you're not one of them, least I think your not."
"I didn't follow you, well, I wanted to talk to you, I hitched a ride on your truck, so ya I did follow you, please, help me!" She pleaded.
"Right, let you in so you can help your friends who are hiding or coming to rob me. Sure toots, do you think I'm stupid?" Duncan remarked to her.
She looked back towards the woods again. This time she held the look for a good five seconds.
"They are here, please, help me!" She pleaded.
"I think I'll just watch and see what happens, in here in safety." He smiled as he said that. "I'm sure your friends will be upset with your failure, but I am sure you are in no personal danger."
"Duncan Galt, Galt labs, former CIA scientist, left their service after unexplained events. My grandfather saved your life. Remember the large dog that pulled the 'strange animal' from you?" She screamed at the door.
Duncan was in a moment of shock and was suddenly broke from it as the motion alarms went off, all of them. He jerked himself from the image of the girl and looked to the yard monitor. "Frell!" He exclaimed as he saw the yard filled with familiar 'strange animals'.
He hammered his finger on the button that was labeled Venus and the yard became like high noon on the equator. He watched the monitor as the humanoid figures in the yard exploded. "Bastards found me." He ejected in a voice that was as angry as it was scared. "That bitch led them to me, she was one of them. Hope you like the light of Venus." Duncan said as he laughed to himself in victory. "Glad to know it works so well."
He was enjoying his success and victory when he became aware of a voice that was screaming. His attention was drawn back to the monitor that was focused on the front door. The girl was curled into a ball, covering her eyes with her hands and screaming at the top of her lungs.
'That's really and odd saying, top of ones lungs, when you think about it wouldn't you be using the bottom actually? Expelling all of the air to scream?' Was the thought in Duncan's mind as he looked at her. "She's still alive?!" He said loudly in a shocked voice. "She can't be one of -" Duncan didn't bother to finish his thought. He scrambled to the control panel. Calmly he pressed a button labeled 'door shields' then looked back to the monitor. Steel curtains had hammered down around the covered entry from the roof above, securing the girl from the critters outside, and cutting of the intense light. The only light now was from the porch light that was mounted in the ceiling of the overhang that made the covered entry.
Looking back at the control panel he pressed the button that unsecured the door itself and one that said weapons. The steel curtain could be heard sliding up from the door and the pins clicked into an unlocked position. A small door opened near the front door, inside a sawed off shotgun much like the one in his truck. Duncan grabbed it, cocked it and then unlocked the deadbolt and knob lock of the front door. He aimed the gun out the door as he opened it. He stepped back when his eyes took in the animal face that greeted him, but he held his fire. Slowly the face returned to that of the girl he had seen in town, and spoken with through the monitor.
"What the frell are you?" he shouted at her.
"You know what I am Duncan." She huffed back in a husky voice. "Just like you know what was chasing me, and what is hunting you." The two stood looking at each other. The girl was breathing heavily and soaking wet. Duncan's palms were sticky and cold as he held the shotgun on her. "May I come in?" She finally asked.
"Cross the threshold if you can, without an invitation." Duncan said to her. The girl rolled her eyes at him.
"That's only supposed to apply to vampires you know." She said.
"Yah, and you're a pretty little werewolf. Enter if you can, without my permission." Duncan iterated.
"Fine! I was only trying to be polite." She said as she opened the storm door and stepped in.
Duncan stepped back as she did and raised the shotgun up as he would be putting it to his shoulder had it had a stock. "I think the time for pleasantries was passed some time ago." Duncan said as he gazed at her and blinked a few times.
"Well, you did call me a pretty little werewolf, I thought we were being polite." She retorted as she turned and closed and locked the door behind her.
"Stating the obvious is just that, stating the obvious, doesn't imply being polite." Duncan said.
The girl stepped forward and as she did Duncan stepped back. She looked at the monitors, then at the control panel. As she reached for the panel Duncan said "Keep your hands off that!"
"I would have asked permission, but we aren't being polite." She replied.
Duncan watched her intently as her finger moved over the button that said it secured the front door. She pressed it and the sound of the door being secure were heard.
"Are you going to keep that thing aimed at me the entire time?" She asked. "First, it wouldn't kill me, piss me off yes, you have that loaded for cruor combibo, not for my kind."
"For what?" Duncan asked not understanding what she said.
"Cruor combibo, blood suckers." She informed him.
"Latin, yes." He wasn't fresh on his Latin.
"Sorry, vampires. Cruor combibo." She said.
'She was not pretty.' Duncan thought as he lowered the shotgun, "You're beautiful." He said, finishing his thought out loud. He stammered a bit, not intending to say that out loud, and becoming embarrassed when he realized he did.
"Please, you don't have to try and flatter me, I am werewolf, we protect humankind from vampires. If I were here to kill you, I would have by now. As I said, your weapon is no threat to me." She said as her nostrils faired. Her face gave a quick look of shock and surprise as she looked at him and took in his scent. "You're aroused! You really think I am attractive!" She said with her surprise blatant in her voice now.
"Why does that shock you? You're young, attractive. How could I not notice that?" Duncan replied.
"Well, not as young as you think. Its just that no one has ever found me attractive before. Least not in my clan or those of my kind." She said.
Duncan reached past her, keeping his eyes on her, and put the shotgun away after he made it safe. Once in its place and the panels closed he quickly moved away from her. She was still dripping from the rain and forming a growing puddle on his floor.
"Who are you and what do you want with me?" Duncan asked.
The girl's warm expression faded from her pale face. Her frame and being seemed to become stolid. Though she didn't actually move any, she appeared to wilt. Duncan's experience told him this was uncharacteristic of the 'young girl'. Her eyes moved down.
Her eyes. Duncan remembered back to his boyhood days. Until he moved here his life had been that of a city-dweller. His country life experience had been limited to a week at an uncles farm being mocked by country cousins who taunted and teased him because of his lack of knowledge of the woods and farm. They had given him the nick name 'wimpy'. "Hey city boy" to call him was soon replaced by "Hey wimpy, check this out!" which often meant he was about to be put into a prearranged situation that would give his cousins ample laughter and a requiem for mocking him.
He remembered the day clearly. It was his 14th birthday. His parents had planned for him to be out in the country as a special treat for his birthday. He didn't blame them, he was excited for the week. They didn't know, nor did he that it would be the most miserable time nor that this would be his worst birthday experience.
Play time was not allowed. His uncle, despite what he and Duncan's father had talked about, decided that Duncan was lazy, too egg-headed and needed to learn to work. There was to be no lolly-gagging on the farm, there wasn't time for that. Duncan would have to earn his keep his uncle had said. His time to enjoy himself was allowed only after 'chores' were done.
Being the new kid on the farm, the least desirable tasks were pawned off on him. Once when he complained to his uncle about the treatment he received from the other kids, Duncan's face was smacked. "Quit whining cry baby." His uncle said. "Get your worthless ass out of here. You'll do whatever you're told to here, else you wont eat." It was that night, after what was deemed an unacceptable performance, Duncan was made to sleep in the barn. His aunt made a short objection, but her words were cut off when she too was smacked. The boys laughed at this. The only daughter in the family did not. "Learn your place, woman. This is a mans decision." His fathers brother told the wife. She too was mocked by the boys of the family.
Duncan saw a different side of life that day, one that made him sick. He had a new perspective on reality now. That was day two on the farm. His birthday party never happened. The gifts his parents had left with the family for this day, had been sold; to 'cover the cost of his being here' he was told.
Duncan was walking in the woods alone after being sent away from the table because his presence made the father angry. He tolerated no weaklings in his household. Now, only allowed to sleep in the barn, he would also eat after all the real men ate, in the kitchen with the women, which is where he belonged, according to his uncle. He and the women would be allowed the leftovers from the men.
After they were 'checked in on', to make sure nothing the men didn't approve of was happening; they busied themselves with dishes and cleanup duties, with a finger on her lips indicating secrecy and silence, the mother pulled from the oven a fresh dinner that he shared with the two women of the house. She softly explained the men-folk would be drinking beer and whiskey outback on the veranda for several hours now. After he ate, Duncan was hurried out a side door.
"Make yourself scarce boy" she had told him. Out of site, out of mind was his aunts logic.
He had been walking in the woods, maybe half an hour when he heard the crunch of leaves and sticks behind him. Fearing the other boys were in pursuit, Duncan darted off in another direction, away from the sound. He could hear more than one set of feet in the woods. He was getting turned around in the woods, wasn't sure of the direction to the farm.
Suddenly he was knocked to the ground. The wind was knocked out of him. While he lay there gasping for breath, he stared up into the ravenous growling face of a large angry dog. It wasn't a dog his mind told him. Far too big. Wolf. A timber wolf his education told him.
The eyes of the wolf were locked with his. Duncan couldn't help it, he pissed his pants. When his breath returned he pleaded with the wolf. "Please, I'm not a threat, please, please, don't kill me!"
Duncan became aware of other sounds around him. He cautiously looked around with his eyes. He took in the sight of another wolf passing by. This one was carrying a pup by the neck and followed by two other pups. Duncan looked back at the wolf on top of him. "I understand, please, let me live, I wont hurt your family! Please!" Duncan had said to the wolf as he once again locked eyes with it. He raised his hands, or more so put them above where his head was, palms up.
The wolfs open mouth growling lessened some and its mouth closed to a teeth baring snarl. Several other wolves ran past. Duncan began crying when the wolf looked away and watched the others pass. He locked eyes with Duncan again, his eyes bode a warning to Duncan. Stay away from us they seemed to say. Duncan nodded at the wolf.
The snarling had stopped. The threat in the eyes was more than enough. The wolf looked up past where he had Duncan pinned on the ground. Its expression softened as its eyes returned to Duncan's. The wolf seemed to comprehend that Duncan was no threat, to understand how he felt. It was strange, at some level the two seemed to communicate. The others were now well passed. The wolf was only protecting his own. Duncan apologized to the wolf. It was a strange interaction, Duncan didn't know how, but he felt somehow the wolf understood. It moved its face forward and licked the tears from the right side of his face and looked respectful at Duncan, then leapt off of him and was gone. Duncan lay on the ground shaking for several minutes. Finally, from his back he looked around. He was alone in the woods.
Duncan slowly got up. He looked at the considerable wet spot that filled the front of his pants to the waistline and went almost to his knees. Shame filled him. At that moment he was glad he had been moved to the barn. Had he needed to go into the house, he was sure the results would be unpleasant to say the least.
Duncan looked around, he wasn't sure which way was home, or to hell as it were. He fumbled around the woods for about 45 minutes, only seeming to become more lost in the woods. Night was coming soon. He was starting to panic. He had began running in a direction, only to reconsider it and begin running in another. He could see the direction of the setting sun, the only thing was, he didn't know if that was towards the farm, or away from it.
His chest was heaving, heart pounding with panic. He heard a bark, a snarling bark. His heart seemed to stop; he looked in the direction of the sound. There stood the wolf he recognized. The one that had him pinned. Its eyes locked on him. He was standing sideways to Duncan, his head turned to look at him. He moved his nose and mouth up in the air when he barked, then looked at Duncan. The wolf was about ten yards away. After it barked, it looked away and trotted off slowly. Then it stopped, looked back at Duncan and barked again. Then it trotted a few feet again. It did this several times, then looked back at Duncan over its shoulder. It turned around and started towards Duncan.
Fear gripped him. He wanted to run, but his feet wouldn't obey. The wolf came right up to Duncan, close enough he could have put his hand in its massive head. Then the wolf did something very unexpected. He stuck his nose in Duncan's hand and snorted. Then he looked at Duncan and cocked his head. 'Follow me" Duncan felt it was telling him. Then the wolf turned and started trotting again.
Duncan's fear subsided. He felt a strange peace, a trust. Was the wolf really helping him? This time when the wolf stopped and looked back and barked, Duncan was able to move and followed the wolf. It would trot ahead, then stop and look back. This routine continued until Duncan could see through the fading light, the lights of the farm he had come from. Relief flooded over him. He wouldn't die in the woods after all. Though, considering the next five days there, it may not have been a bad way to go.
When Duncan looked to thank the wolf, he was alone. He turned around and faced the woods and quietly said 'thank you' to the woods.
It was the following morning Duncan asked if he could call his parents.
"You got money to pay for the call?" His uncle had said. "That's long distance, unless you have money to pay for it, you ain't making no long distance call on my phone."
When Duncan inquired about the cost his uncle said he would charge him $10 for the use of the phone and one minute of time. He knew Duncan wouldn't have that much money. When he asked his aunt in the kitchen while they ate and the 'men' drank outside she told him that her husband kept the phone locked up so no one could use it but him.
Duncan kept thinking about the wolf, how it had helped him. They eyes. The power in them.
Duncan later requested a stamp so he could mail a letter instead. 'You ain't gettin no stamp, you don't be needen to mail no damn letter, now get in the barn bastard.' He had been told by his uncle. The next day, his uncle removed all the paper, notebooks, everything Duncan had to write on from the barn. Fortunately Duncan anticipated something like this and had hid his letter home. That night, under cover of the dark moonless night, he made is way down the driveway and the some 3 miles to a neighbors mailbox. He had no envelope nor stamp. He had taped the pages closed with duct tape he found in the barn and wrote the to and return addresses the same and put a quarter with the letter and a note begging the letter carrier to deliver it. He hoped it would make it to his parents before they left to pick him up.
Duncan was sitting on the veranda at the front of the house when his parents pulled in the yard. He was clean and well dressed, bags setting neatly beside the short railed steps leading onto the veranda by the front door. His aunt and uncle were sitting in a swing bench laughing while the other boys sat in chairs all drinking lemonade and appearing to be one big happy family. The daughter sat smiling talking with Duncan. It was all quite posed. His uncle had threatened Duncan, telling him that he was to tell his father and mother of the great time he had here. He said if he didn't he was to expect a visit from him in that city of his in the middle of the night. He was told he would be shown what a 'Nam vet was capable of.'
When his parents car pulled in the drive, it stopped some hundred feet shy of the house. Duncan's father emerged from the drivers side. The car remained running as he closed the door. Duncan's mother stayed in the car and he heard the sound of the power locks as his father strode towards the house. His gate was unusual.
Duncan's father was considerably smaller than his brother, Duncan's uncle. While his uncle stood well over 6 foot, his father was a mere 5 foot 7. The uncle was a mountain of a man, very muscular from a life of farm work. His sons were of much the same build with only the youngest still under six foot.
"Get your bags, put them in the car, then get in with your mother. I need to have a few words with your uncle Duncan." His father said about halfway to the house. The laughter had ended on the veranda.
Duncan heard his uncle snort and say 'this ought to be good, get in the house boys, looks like Bradley is a touch angry with me."
Duncan moved without a word. He grabbed the suitcases and hurried towards the car. As he passed his father he looked up at him. He couldn't remember what his father said, but he could remember the eyes and the look in them. He had seen that look days before as he lay on the ground and stared up into the eyes of the wolf. This time though it would be six threats against the one protector. Duncan looked back at his uncle after he passed his father. The man had his hands on his hips and wore a smug arrogant smile. Duncan feared for his father.
Once he reached the car Duncan's mother popped the trunk for him to put his bags in. He hurried them in and closed the trunk of the large Cadillac. He heard the doors unlock as his mother made ready for him to enter the car.
"Something bugging you Brad?" He heard his uncle say.
"Inside Russ." His father had said. And the two men entered the farmhouse and the sons followed.
"You ladies stay out here, my brother and I seem to have something to talk about." His uncle said as they went in. The women quickly ran towards the barn and went in. Duncan had seen the cold fear in their faces.
Shouting could now be heard from the house. Then the sound of breaking glass and other items. Duncan closed the trunk and burst into a run towards the house. His mother had stepped from the car and yelled after him to get back here and get in the car, she didn't want him to see what was happening in the house. She didn't come after him though. Some things a boy needed to learn on his own.
When Duncan arrived at the farmhouse he ducked in behind some bushes and peered in a window near where the sounds had come from. They had oddly stopped. Soon his uncles voice was heard and Duncan saw the situation.
"You always were not so bright Brad. Walking in here, six to one." He laughed. Duncan saw the two eldest boys behind his father holding his arms. His uncle had his back to the window. Duncan could hardly see his father as the others surrounded him. His uncle was rolling up his sleeves, preparing the beat his father while he was held. Two of the other sons were doing as their father was, rolling up their sleeves while the youngest procured a bat from a closet.
"Just like when we were boys eh Brad?" Duncan's uncle said. "Time to get your ass beat again." The group laughed. His uncle started to put up his dukes, making ready to beat his fathers face. "You're little pretty boy face wont be the same when I'm done with you this time brother ol' boy." His uncle went on.
As the others moved around Duncan was able to see his fathers face. His eyes. There was no fear in them. Again, he recognized the look. His eyes were feral. There was no sign of defeat in his father at all. Something inside Duncan said his uncle and sons were outmanned. Six to one, they would still come up short.
Duncan had never seen his father mad before. Never heard him raise his voice. Even when Duncan had been bad and earned a spanking, He had never raised his voice. Duncan's father was always a man of control. He metered himself in everything. He never 'lost his cool'. Even now, he was calm and in control of himself. Duncan found himself smiling. It was at that point Duncan's father saw him in the corner of the window. His father looked him directly in the eyes and his mouth formed a light smile. Then he winked at Duncan as his brothers fist came forward.
What happened next, at the time, was amazing to Duncan. He had always seen his father as a kind, somewhat meek man. Not one to fight or cause trouble. He never would have expected his father to be able to manhandle six muscle bound oafs. But facts are facts, and he witnessed the events with his own eyes.
When there was no chance of his brother stopping the blow, some inches from his face, Brad exchanged his position with that of the eldest son. The concussive blow to the young mans face included the sound of breaking bones which resulted in Brad being able to free his left arm. The second eldest boy was stunned by what happened and failed to react quick enough to prevent the next action from Brad, which what to remove him from his standing position to that of a horizontal one and project him at his father. The youngest did react, swinging the bat down towards Brad's head. Brad grabbed the bat with his left hand and thrust it backwards into the face of the operator, the flared butt end connecting with the young mans face just below the nose. This action contained a considerable amount of force as at the same time, Brad's foot connected with the under part of son number fours chin. The youngest sons face exploded. The end of the bat made it about halfway into his mouth. He was out of the fight.
Son number five lunged forward as the bat seemed to hover in the air, as did his father who had not a foot on the ground. Brad's hands came together as the fifth son arrived, open palmed in a clapping motion on each side of the boys ears. This was shortly followed by one of Brad's knees connecting with the underside of this boys chin. He flew backwards and past where son number two and the father were righting themselves following the collision of the two tumbling them to the ground. Brad retrieved the bat from midair and holding it like a battering ram, introduced the second sons breadbasket area to the Louisville Slugger. As the boy crumpled to the floor the contents of his stomach arrived slightly before the boys face.
Russ had turned his back on Brad, reaching into the drawer of a small table across from the window Duncan was observing from. As his son landed face down in vomit, he turned and was holding a model 1911 45 caliber pistol, the hammer back. He pulled the trigger, however the gun failed to fire as Brad had placed the webbing between his thumb and index finger in the way of the hammer of the gun and closed his fingers around it. Brad's face was calm. The clip fell from the gun, and with a sudden move, Brad moved the breach back, ejecting the chambered round and locking the gun in a loading position. Russ had a look of awe on his face as Brad calmly and with ease, removed the gun from his brothers hand.
"Boys, collect your wounded and leave." Duncan's father said to the two groaning boys who were still conscious. Brad stepped back and locked eyes with his brother, allowing room for the two boys to retrieve the limp bodies of their siblings and retreat. That was Duncan's cue to bolt back to the car. He was about halfway to the Cadillac when he heard his father growl and roar. This was followed by the voice of his uncle screaming and begging for mercy.
Duncan sat in the back of the large Cadillac silently and stared at the barn where the ladies were in hiding. Inside the car he was safe from the sounds that were coming from the farmhouse. His mother sat unmoving in the passenger seat ahead of him.
"Linda, Tracey!" Duncan heard his fathers voice yell. He was about half way to the car and was at the edge of the path that led to the barn. He could see red on his fathers tight black shirt and pants. The red was on his hands arms and face also. He was wet with sweat. The two ladies emerged from the barn, timidly. Brad motioned them closer.
"It's all right. Come here please." The two ladies moved slow the first few steps, then the daughter followed as the mother broke into a quick run. Duncan couldn't make out what was said. He watched as the two ladies nodded and cried. When Duncan's father turned and headed to the waiting car the two ladies ran back into the barn. When his father climbed into the drivers seat it was then Duncan noticed the seat was covered in plastic, he heard the sound of it and looked. He looked to his feet. Understanding.
A deep sigh came from his father and he hesitated a moment before putting the Cadillac into drive and made a U-turn in the drive and headed down the drive. They turned up the road, opposite the direction the should have turned to head home. They turned left into a driveway across from a mailbox marked 'Coswell', the one Duncan had placed his letter home in.
They went to the farmhouse there. They were warmly greeted by the couple there and their two remaining adult children. His father went upstairs and utilized their shower while the rest of the family entertained their guests. His father and the husband of the house left the group after a meal was served. They talked in a private room for about 15 minutes.
"I'll take care of it Brad, you can count on that." The man was saying as they exited the room and the two men shook hands. "I know everyone at the bus station personally, my son manages the place. Won't have any problems arranging things." He finished.
Duncan looked at his father. He had the look of a protector in his eyes still. He though of the wolf again. The power behind the look.
When they arrived home, Duncan's father took his bags. "Get something to eat, you're probably hungry by now." He said to Duncan with a gentle voice and a smile.
Duncan nodded and headed to the kitchen. He had grabbed some milk and cereal and mixed the two on the island in the kitchen. He had taken his first mouthful when he noticed a letter on the table. It bore an airmail, next day service emblem in the upper right hand corner. 'Open Immediately!' was written above the address to be delivered to. It was postmarked from the area he had just spent a week in. Milk dripped down Duncan's chin as he reached for the letter. Inside the envelope he found his letter home and a another letter. He read the note that accompanied his:
Dear Mr. Galt, my name is Evelyn Wolf, this letter was in the Coswell's mailbox addressed to this address. It had no envelope or postage, only a quarter I assumed was to pay for it. Forgive me, but I did read this letter, I am paying to have it rushed to you.
In our area, we know how violent your brother is, and if your son is staying there, he is in danger! Russ Galt is a cruel and evil man. Please contact the Coswell's at the enclosed number. They will be talking with the sheriff.
Duncan began to cry. He didn't notice his father enter the room. He felt his father's hands on his shoulders.
"You never know son, where you will find friends." His dad said softly.
It was two weeks later Linda and her daughter Tracey arrived at their doorstep. The marks of their trials clearly visible on their faces and arms. Brad had told them when they departed, should they decide to leave, the Coswell's would help them to the bus station. Tickets for the two of them would be waiting and enough money to get them to safety at the home Bradley and Connie Galt.
"You're father said we could come here." Linda said to Duncan in a shattered voice. Tracey looked empty and hollow. "Are your parents home?" She asked.
"No, but you are now." Duncan said to her and held the door open and extended an arm of welcome to the inside of their house. "Drop your luggage at the door, I will take care of it for you." He told them. "We have a room waiting for you."
"Thank you." Linda said with tears streaming down her face.
Duncan took their bags and led them upstairs to a large bedroom with two beds made on either side of the room complete with nightstands. After he placed the bags by the door he told them he would set the table and put out some food. He apologized for his lack of cooking abilities and his parents not being there. Tracey was silent, standing by the bags next to the door.
"You never know where you will find friends" Duncan said to her and smiled. She smiled back and tears began to form in her eyes. Duncan left for the kitchen.
"Could I at least get a towel?" The girl said.
Duncan snapped back. Her eyes, they were like the wolf's. The wolf had helped him. His memory softened his stand some. 'You never know where you will find friends.'
His fathers words from so many years back echoed in his mind now. He gazed into her eyes. It wasn't just the look the wolf had that reflected in them, the grey and yellow, they were the eyes of a wolf. "Uh, sorry, yes. Wait here, I'll get you a towel" Duncan said to her as he finally took note of the puddle she was in. "You're probably chilled to the bone now too." He said as he moved off towards the bath. She gave no reply.
When he returned she was staring at the yard monitor. The lights were still on.
"Here, a couple towels, and a robe." He said to the girl and slid a chair to her. "Take your shoes and socks off, I'll take your coat and hang it to dry." She smiled softly and did as he suggested, then applied the towels to her soaked clothes. "If you head to the light in the hall, I have the shower ready for you, you can disrobe and set your clothes outside the door and get showered and warmed up while I run these through the washer and dryer. Robe is hanging on the back of the door you can use." He was starting to act like a good host, the tension between them eased a bit. He still didn't trust her.
"Thank you Mr. Galt." She said and bowed from the waist lightly then made her way towards the bathroom.
While she showered Duncan prepared her clothes for the washer, ensuring everything was out of the pockets. Some of the items were, odd, to say the least. Nothing he would have considered dangerous. There were two daggers, one on each of the outsides of her boots. They were small, the blade barely 4 inches long with a short handle. He turned the boots upside down on a rack to try.
One item that did catch his eye was a laminated card. It was only an inch or so wide and about two inches long. He missed it the first time he checked the pockets of her denim coat because it was so small. He noticed it when he grabbed the coat to place it in the front loading washer. He felt something stiff in the pocket. The card was a laminated piece of paper with his name and address on it. Nothing more. She carried a wallet. He considered going through it, she had left it in the pants. He stopped though. Finding things when you should expect them to be removed for washing was one thing, digging into her wallet, that was pushing the line. She did make it clear she was looking for him. She had done him no harm, and she wasn't one of 'them'.
After he loaded her clothes into the washer and started its cycle, he ventured into the kitchen. "I wonder what werewolves eat." He said to himself. He felt, for some reason, human was not on the menu. "Do you eat fruits and vegetables? Or is it a meat only diet?" He pondered out loud. He considered this while he made a cracker and cheese tray with cold cut meat. "Dogs will eat more that meat, I would have to assume wolves would too. They are closely related." With that thought in mind he sliced some apple, pealed an orange and put some broccoli with dip on the table.
She took some time in the shower. The washer had finished and he had transferred the clothes to the dryer by the time she emerged from the bath, her shoulder length black hair still wet but mostly dried by a towel and slicked back, wearing the robe he provided for her.
"Really?" She said when he arose from his recliner, putting down the book he had been reading. "A pink fluffy robe?" She laughed lightly. "Defiantly not my normal attire."
"Beggars can't be choosers." He said with a stoic voice. "That was my wife's."
She let it drop. Bad timing. Her humor would not be accepted.
Realizing this, she turned her attention to the island in the kitchen she stood near with the prepared food. "May I?" She asked in a soft, relaxed and humble voice pointing at the food.
"Of course. I put it there for you." His voice, stoic and cold.
"Will I be dinning alone?" She queried. Looking at him, cocking her head slightly and raising an eyebrow.
Duncan hadn't eaten since the morning, yesterday. He hadn't though of himself when he made the food. "If you wish, didn't know if you wanted company while you ate."
She smiled at him. Her smile told that she felt slighted by his demeanor. He was keeping her at a distance, not just physically. She moved to sit on one of the bar stools around the island. Once on the stool, the shortness of her stature diminished, gave her a taller appearance. When she looked at him, her eyes looked older. They weren't the same as when they first met. They were no longer the eyes of a wolf. They were blue, a deep sapphire blue and looked human.
"No need to be rude Mr. Galt." She said after she was comfortable on the stool. "Please join me, you need to eat too." She had become stoic also. "Though I do not appreciate the comparison to that of a dog, though yes, wolves are very closely related, in answer to your question Mr. Galt, yes, I do eat fruits and vegetables as well as meat. I eat the same things you do, Mr. Galt."
Duncan looked at her. He stood motionless for almost a minute. Finely he moved to her side and took one of the stools and moved it to the other side of the island so he could sit across from her. "What's with your eyes?" He finally said after he sat. "They aren't the same as when you intruded my home.
She put the piece of apple she was munching on down, smoothed the robe at her legs, then placed her elbows on the top of the island and rested her chin on the folded tops of her hands. "Mr. Galt-"
"My name is Duncan. You know that, I'm not fond of being called Mr. Galt, thank you." Duncan interjected cutting her off, tossing the laminated paper at her as he spoke.
She looked down at it. Then eased herself off the stool enough to reach her wallet sitting to her right on the island. She sniffed the surface of the wallet on both sides. Then opened it and sniffed it on the inside. "Thank you Duncan, for not going through my wallet." She said, with just a note of appreciation in her otherwise stoic reply.
When she looked at him again her eyes had changed. They were green this time. "Is this better?" She asked. "Or perhaps brown?" She said as he watched her eyes become human brown.
"Enough tricks, what do you eyes really look like? And what does it matter anyways what color they are?" His voice was angry now.
"I'm sorry." She said as her eyes changed again. "I thought a more human look would make you more comfortable than my natural eyes."
Duncan sighed. He looked to the top of the island and moved his lips, angry at himself as he moved his head slowly a little from side to side. Looking at her he said "Just leave them the way they naturally are, I'm not a fan of things that are fake." He looked off to the side and dropped his hands onto the top of the island. "I like the way they looked when we met." She sensed a change in his mood. "I actually find the eyes of a wolf-" He hesitated a moment. Then he looked her in the eyes. "I find the eyes of a wolf more, I don't know, more secure, solid, protecting." He looked exasperated. He grabbed a cracker and put some meat and cheese on it.
The two ate in silence. She finished her apple and moved to the broccoli. He joined her in the food readily. It felt good to eat. When she started on the crackers, cheese and meat she asked for something to drink.
"There's glasses in the cupboard there." He pointed to a cupboard. "And water and ice in the door." He finished pointing to the dispensers in the door of the refrigerator.
"I was thinking something other than water. Think I've had enough of that for one day." She said with a light laugh.
"Well, that's about all I have, I don't have any milk or juice, only other thing in the fridge is beer." Duncan sounded both vexed and apologetic.
"I'll have a beer than, imported?"
"Yah, imported and no, you're a bit young for beer, don't you think?" Duncan said with an almost fatherly tone.
"I'm 87. I'm older than you." Came her hard reply.
"Yah, sure you are kid, what do you take me for? You can't be much over 16." Duncan retorted.
"You know what I am, you even called me a werewolf yourself, a pretty little one if I remember." She was becoming angry with his attitude.
"Right, werewolf. I believe that. Right along with the tooth fairy." He sat up looking at her with his challenge issued.
"Your yard is filled with lights, Venus lights? Why? Just to make your garden grow? At night? Or is it to destroy vampires you know are hunting you, Mr. Galt?" Her face was covered in disdain for him. He voice cold, edged by his sudden turn to a disbeliever.
"I have no idea what you're talking about. Some crazy girl comes in here, making wild claims about being a 'werewolf' and now is telling me I'm a vampire hunter. I have half a mind to call the cops right now, have them take you someplace where you can get some help!" Duncan growled.
She stood, and with a jester from her hand, gave him the middle finger. Duncan snorted a laugh and waved her off as though he viewed her as a trite child.
Her robe dropped to the floor. Duncan's eyes caught that and widened. Before he could object, her head rolled back, arms extended out to the sides down towards the floor. Some and hair sprung from every part of her flesh. Hair? Fur. She grew larger, and was soon covered entirely in fur and stood to the ceiling and took form as a large humanoid wolf. Elongated mouth and nose like that of a wolf, long arms the long slender muscular fingers ending in razor sharp claws. She turned towards him and snarled. Looking down at him.
Duncan recoiled from her. Had he pushed her to far?
She turned away from him so she was sideways to him again. The form reduced itself, herself. Soon, standing in the place of the large werewolf image, was a normal looking timber wolf. The eyes were hers. A peace flooded Duncan. He looked ashamed. He looked away from her, down at his lap. When he looked up, there was the girl again, tying her robe back on.
"I'm sorry." He said. "People would think I was crazy if I told them what I knew." He sighed and stood up and walked to the fridge. Looking back towards her but not at her he said "sometimes I think I'm crazy." Duncan returned from the fridge and set a beer in front of her, he moved to his side of the table and opened his beer.
She took the bottle and looked at it. It had a ceramic cork with a rubber seal and a small metal latch that held the cork in place. Defiantly not a cheap American brew. She popped the top and took a long draw from the pint sized bottle. When she finished she set it down with a long 'Ah' sound. "Now that's a good beer" she said.
After a short time, and a bit more dining, she spoke again. Duncan merely observed. He was a bit shell shocked at the moment, reflecting on the past until she returned him to the present.
"I was born, Madelyn Johansson, as I said, 87 years ago." She took another long drink and then continued. "I am a born werewolf, which has more downsides than up. Would be better to be a turned. I am known in my clan, or pack if you will, by my clan name Sadness. I am too dark for their liking. You see, as a people werewolves are a happy, almost festive people. We were put here to protect humankind, not to hunt it as most legends say."
"Protect?" Duncan asked.
"Hm, yes. We are the counter to the dark ones minions, the cruor combibo, blood suckers or vampires as they have become known. Bargainers of souls to be more exact. They are evil incarnate, which only the undead can be. Werewolves are not undead, we are quite alive. We are the 'tutela of animus', guardians of souls. Back in the beginning, after the first fall of man, evil was allowed to roam free, devouring whom it could. To counter this, protectors were created. Wolves. They advised humans, alerted them to danger."
"Over time though, the link between humans and their animal counterparts weakened. The telepathic link became a faint whisper. A result of the fall. By the time of Noach and the great flood, this link was all but gone. It was on the ark the wolves gave of themselves, a new creation from their very souls. That creation became the domestic dog of today. They carried with them the wolves sensitivity to evil, a sixth sense as some call it. They can see dark spirits, and spirits of light as well, but there is no need to warn of those. Through time, the wolf became more separated from the human. They still harbor no ill to them. Unless provoked, wolves will walk away from a human. They still will protect them, if the situation is right." She paused for a cracker. She had Duncan's full attention now. She sniffed the air around him. Not a trace of disbelief.
"Naturally, the darkness also evolved as it were. Changing from simple reptile form and attempting to deceive humans into disbelief and filth, to dark creatures that sough to barter for souls to feed their master. The human soul though is a well protected commodity."
"Our souls are a commodity to you?" Duncan interjected with a tone of disgust.
"Pardon, in the spirit world to the darkness, yes, the most precious of commodities." She stopped and looked firmly at Duncan. Once she saw the gravity of the statement had set in, she continued.
"The minions soon learned that tricking someone to 'sell their soul' using a common term, was not possible. The minions also had their link between their master weakened over time, so it took centuries for them to understand this. They tried many different ways to entice the soul from unsuspecting victims. Even a forced committal of the soul, swearing ones soul to the darkness via fear and force, doesn't work. It's not willing and thus doesn't make a valid deal. Only an act of blasphemy, which has to be of free will, can make the deal real. One cannot blaspheme the creator unwillingly."
"Thus the minions changed and grew, working to find a way to entice more true blasphemy and harvest more souls for the darkness away from the light. Which isn't as easy as it sounds. Only creatures of light can stand in the light. Which is why the minions of the darkness, or vampires today have such an allergic reaction to true light, or that of the sun. The true light of the creator. It's very involved." She smiled and rose and moved to the living room, motioning for him to follow. He grabbed his beer and quickly followed.
They sat on the couch as she continued.
"As I was saying, the goal for the minions of the darkness was to harvest souls. Over time they grew and learned better ways of accomplishing the age old task. The tools causing the original fall were still valid and useful, and still are today. They merely refined their methods. Though, enticing true blasphemy was difficult. Thus the vampire grew from the original minions. A very effective salesman if you will."
"They did need humans to do the majority of the procuring of souls. Like the wolves, they too risk losing their connection with their creator. So, the minions of the darkness each chose a human subject in which serves their desires and master. They each found humans with a true foundation of darkness in them. Eventually, through promise of power and riches, very tempting items to the human nature, they caused these humans to devolve into lovers of the darkness."
"They taught them how to blaspheme and in return for their souls, empowered them to make others like them. The part that wasn't told to the humans was that in order to become what was promised, they would die in the process. Once dead, the life from the darkness would enter them, fill them and restore them to the world. Even though they had become lovers of the darkness, so long as they lived their mortal lives, the light of creation was still in them. This light needed to be extinguished before the darkness could truly have them as pure servants."
"These new minions, the former humans were to use the 'gifts' the darkness had given them to entice others. This enticing was far from subtle. They would select humans, sometimes at random, others for specific reasons and force a choice on them. As I said before, a forced soul contract is not withstanding, however, the minions had a counter to that which was an avenue to a willing submission of soul. The bite of one of these minions would 'infect' a victim. This much holds true in the current lore. Now, once bitten, as the bite injects the victim with some of the blood and saliva from the minion, the contamination is quickly spread throughout the body. It takes about a week for the full effects of the infestation from the minion to become ripe. Through this process the victim is linked to the prime or original minion, who, no longer does any of the dirty work. It is via this link the original minions of the darkness entice the victim with the promises, wealth, power and the most tantalizing one of all, immortality. There is also the usual, women, sex, drugs, power to control others, and so on, they target a victims individual weaknesses."
"Like another?" Duncan asked, holding up his empty bottle and motioning to hers.
"Please, and thank you." She responded.
Duncan took her bottle from her and deposited it in the trash, and soon returned with another for each of them. "So, let me get this straight. You're telling me creation is real and God, the whole bible and Jesus and all that?" Duncan asked.
"Whoa, hold on there cowboy. I'm only telling you what I know. Yes the creation is real, the creator is real and so is evil. As to Jesus and all that human hand jive, I don't know. Not a part of my job description. We, as protectors of humankind, cannot become active in religious events. True, a vampire will shun from religious totems, but only ones that are held in true faith and of the true creator."
"Ok, where was I?" She asked.
"Vices, seducing victims with promises, the usual stuff. Targeting people through their weaknesses." Duncan said.
"Right, anyways, once the victim believes all the promises are real, well, they are, from a certain point of view. They willingly commit their souls to the darkness and blaspheme the creator. It's only after the sale is complete and they receive the promises, that they find them empty, mostly due to what they are not informed of. Being dead, has a lot of drawbacks. Such as never being able to set foot in sunlight again." She looked over at the door. When she looked back at Duncan she had a puzzled look in her face. "Venus lights." She said.
"Yes, my creation, very intense light, mimics sunlight to almost exact." Duncan replied.
"Yes, that has never worked before, simulating sunlight and actually having an effect." She said as she stared over at the control panel and door. Then she snapped her attention back to Duncan again. "Why Venus light? What does that mean?" She posed to him.
"Heh, well, rather simple you see, the light emits at the same intensity, strength as if you were standing on the surface of Venus, provided it wasn't covered in clouds that is." Duncan informed her.
She looked at the back of her hands, the part that had been exposed to the light when she covered herself. They were bright red from the light, an instant sunburn. "So I see. But how did you get it to work? We've tried to simulate sunlight in a mechanical way before and it never had an effect, what did you do? How did you test it?"
Duncan looked a bit sheepish right now. "Actually, I didn't know it would work. Tonight was the first time I actually had to use it. Haven't had to face a vampire, since, well, since I last faced one." Duncan had pain in his face. He changed the topic to the lights. "They are LED lights, organic LED type. I redesigned them from the computer field to use in my plant research facilities for growing. Very effective. They produce their own light, however, I created a design that allows the addition of massive amounts of electricity that exponentially increases the output. Normally putting the large amounts of amps and volts into an electronic device would melt it to slag. This design simply emits light as a form of self protection. As you saw, the result is very intense. Naturally I have kept this to myself." Duncan finished with a smile, the girl however failed to acknowledge his patting himself on the back.
"Organic, that must be the key, since it's organic, it has essence of the true light in it and that is carried through into the light!" Her voice was filled with glee on this understanding.
"Ah, yah, I suppose, since its organic, true light, ok." He wasn't feeling much appreciated at the moment. He started to think and consider the recent events and the story relayed to him. The girl chattered on about the lights and what her clan had tried. He really wasn't interested. Then a thought struck him.
"Ok, then, tell me this werewolf girl, if you are supposed to be the protector of humans, why did you need me to save you from the vampires in the yard tonight? Why couldn't you defend yourself and why weren't you the one protecting me instead of the other way around?" His voice was determined, he had her cornered on that one.
"Sheesh, really? Tell me Duncan, had there been 20 men at your uncles house that Brad had to fight instead of 6, how well would he have done than?" She looked intently at him. "6 to one, not bad odds, damn good for me against vampires, 1,500 to one, not so good. Perspective?" She said curtly.
"1,500?" Duncan said shocked
"Yah, second coven you've destroyed. This time all in one shot, took them frelling bastards out in one flip of the switch. Damn that made me - ah, feel good."
Just then the buzzer of the dryer could be heard. "My clothes?" She asked.
"Yes miss." Duncan answered her.
She jumped up and headed towards the laundry without a word. When she returned she was fully dressed and was brushing her hair. It became a bit mussed when she had changed. Physically that is. Duncan guessed it was hard to keep your fur in place during that. He chuckled softly at is musing.
The girl sat down and drank from her beer. She seemed to finally relax her frame completely.
"So," Duncan began, "what am I to call you?" He asked more politely this time.
She looked over at him and genuinely smiled this time. "Well, I did deviate from that didn't I."
Duncan nodded slowly. He had many other questions he wanted to ask. How did she know of the events at the farm so many years ago for one. Could she read his mind?
"Well, as I said, I was born with the name Madelyn, and my clan named me Sadness. As you observed, I look rather young, for someone of my age. Werewolves aren't immortals though, that privilege or curse is reserved for the undead and those of the elf persuasion." She smiled a cantankerous smile. "Just kidding about the elf types. Anyways, a change of identity is needed from time to time. Especially as record keeping has improved. Not so easy to change anymore. For a while I was Jillian Smith. When we first met, I was Betty Coswell." She paused for the questions to fill themselves in.
Duncan looked off into space, then at her, taking his mind back to the day they dined at the Coswell's. Betty, she was one of the adult children at the house. They said she was 18 then. He quickly turned his eyes to the girl in front of him. He looked at the scars on the left side of her face. Take away the excessive gothic jewelry, even the hair was the same. It was her.
Before he could speak she went on. "Sometimes evil just happens, some people just are evil. For no real reason, they just are bad people. Your uncle was one such person, and his two eldest sons were cut from the same cloth. The other three had a chance. After your aunt left, we dealt with that evil. No one should have to go through what your aunt and the daughter went through. And if we didn't act, the youngest three sons would be just as evil by association. The other two were born that way. That's where the 'accident' at the farm came into play. Claiming the lives of Russ and his two demon spawn." The girl looked down at her lap. She looked somber for a moment, then took a draw off her beer. She lightly laughed. "That chicken shit squealed like a stuck pig when I pitched his foul ass into that machine. His eldest hit me so hard with a steel pipe it bent around my skull."
She shook her head and smiled. "Should have seen the look on his face when I simply looked back at him and grabbed him by his flannel shirt, 'next' I said, he was so vile, he didn't even scream when I pitched him in, just called me a cunt. The last one fell on his own, he came running up, thought he was somehow going to save them, tripped and fell in head first. Don't think he was bright enough to realize what happened." She looked at Duncan. "They were prime for harvest Duncan. The minions were already eyeing them up and potential candidates. Had they been smarter humans, they would have been marked a long time ago. They can smell evil."
Duncan looked away. He was happy to hear what happened to his uncle. He had no pity for him. He earned what he received. At the funeral for the three, only a few family members showed up. The preacher gave no eulogy. He simply asked if anyone had any words to say for the departed. No one spoke. Not a tear was shed. The sale of the farm and equipment paid for both Tracey and Linda to go to college. Duncan felt at least something good came out of the ordeal. Both ladies were able to improve their lives after the living hell they went through.
"Currently my drivers license says I am 'Jennifer Mitchell'." She said the name with a perky tone and bobbed her head side to side as she said it, mocking the unknown name she now used. "She died in a car accident. She was an annoying cheerleader on her way to college. I could smell deaths hand on her. It was very strong. I merely had to follow her. And not long. I ran into her and her friends at a roadside diner. They had been drinking quite heavily. Jennifer was not wearing her seatbelt. The car left the road, I think she might have passed out. When the car collided with the concrete meridian where the road went from two lane to four, she was ejected. The girl next to her was too, only she went straight into the concrete pillar. The two in back, they didn't have seatbelts on either. Only one of them actually survived. If you can call being a vegetable on life support surviving. Jennifer was some 120 feet from the edge of the road, she was driving very fast and flew quite a ways, alive the entire time, screaming, finally sober. She landed head first into the ground. That's when the screaming stopped. I had to act quick, we looked enough alike, aside from the height difference. I changed, quickly dug a nice hole, and stuffed her in, taking anything she had on her, even her clothes, my luck she was wearing a mini skirt, which on me, well it was still too short for my liking." Her expression revealed her sadness over the event. She was staring at the floor when she spoke. She may not have cared for the perkiness of the person, but it was obvious she didn't wish the fate she ended in.
With a deep breath she continued. "I changed back, donned her clothes and put mine in a bag and hid them in the ditch. I'd be able to sniff my way back. Then I went to the car and positioned the passenger in the front, behind the wheel. Myself, in her spot, with my seatbelt on. When the cops arrived I gave the impression that I was just regaining consciousness. They tested me for alcohol, and other things, naturally found nothing. They bought my story of how I was tired and wanted to sleep so I let the other girl drive. They even accepted that I had been sleeping for several hours and unaware she was drinking. Easy to buy considering the distance they had traveled and how far they still had to go. I remembered from listening to them talk in the diner. I memorized her voice. The cops said I was lucky to be alive. The others bodies were shipped home, I talked to my 'mother' and she accepted my voice as the somber voice of her daughter. She was insistent that I come home and go to a local college after what happened. I convinced her that for my friends I would go and do this for them. The true lone survivor, once she was stable enough to travel, returned home where she still remains, 3 years now, machines keeping her alive." When she finished she sat there for a long time.
Neither one said a word for a long time.
Finally she spoke again. "I went to another state, using her ID and birth records got a license with my picture on it. It was easy to get the agent to buy the excuse about the height. Jenny was 5'7". I'm 5'1" a significant difference. I told them the state had messed up, taking the 1 for a 7. She bought it and didn't even question the hair color, only asked if blonde was my natural hair color. I told her no, that the lady at the DMV had put that down. My license arrived 30 days latter. I've been her ever since." She finished her beer and took it to the trash herself this time. When she came back she stood in front of Duncan and stuck out her hand. "Call me Snow." She said.
Duncan shook her hand. "Nice to finally know what to call you, Snow." They finished shaking hands and Snow sat back down. "So what's with the gothic look? When you were born, jewelry like that wasn't even close to being in style." Duncan posed.
Snow smiled and nodded. "Yah, what about that. Heh, well, let me tell you, in the proper Victorian culture of the werewolves, it doesn't stomach well either. Part of the reason I was disavowed from my clan." She looked over at him and with a coy smile stuck out her tongue revealing her tongue stud.
Duncan shook his head and laughed. Just then the motion detector alarms went off again. Both sprung to their feet and Snow followed Duncan to the nearest monitor. Several humanoid forms could be seen moving near the tree line. Duncan zoomed the camera in. "Vampires." Snow said. "Guess you didn't get them all, shit!" Just then the power flickered and went out. Blue emergency lights came on, giving the room a soft, almost passionate glow.
"Yeah, they are smart." Duncan said. "Took out the substation."
"Vampires aren't as smart as you think Duncan." Snow said in a snap.
Duncan grabbed her by the shoulder. "Come on, to the basement, my citadel is there. And they can't get to my generators."
Snow followed Duncan as he led her through the soft blue lit rooms to the stairs that descended deep below the house, through the short hall and past the vault door which he closed behind them and secured. "They are expecting the lights again. What they aren't expecting is my sprinkler system." Duncan informed Snow and the took to the control panel in the main room.
As he checked systems and took the generators out of idle and brought them fully online Snow spoke. "Sprinklers? You do know that water has no effect on vampires, right?"
"This isn't just water Snow, its water and garlic juice for starters." Duncan informed her.
"Duncan, garlic doesn't kill vampires, hate to be the barer of bad news, "
"I know Snow, but it sure slows them down."
"True, it messes up their senses, they can't smell human, or werewolf. Disorientates them too, messes up their radar. But what good is that going to do, why not hit them with the lights again?" Snow inquired.
"Because they are expecting it, therefore they will be prepared for it and plotting to destroy the lights. Obviously some saw what happened and told the others. Holy water works on them, right?" He asked turning to Snow.
"Frell yah. Melts the frellers like acid. What, you have a reservoir of holy water here?" Snow asked.
"Not exactly, but if water were to pass through a pile, say made from holy items, the water passing through it would thus become holy, right?" Duncan asked. Having never had the opportunity to test the theory, he was looking for some positive feedback on his attempt.
"A pipe? Made from holy items? What did you do, melt down crosses?" Snow asked.
"Yes, crosses, crucifixes, stars of David, the works, made a 4 food pile out of them, 2 and a half inch inside diameter and the walls are 2 inches thick, wanted to make sure it could handle the pressure with cheap and soft metals." Duncan was still looking at her. "Well?"
Snow had a perplexed look on her face. "Duncan-" she moved her had around grasping, "I have no idea, I'm only 87, that's young for a werewolf, I have never heard of it being done before!" She looked at the monitor. The forms had come closer, they still were a ways from the house, they were being cautious. Snow didn't know how many were left. She was wrong about the entire coven following her and coming after her and Duncan. "You're ideas have been right so far, but, Duncan, I think melting them down, that might remove the properties. I don't think it will have the effect, remember I told you that it's not the items, its the faith behind them!" Snow told Duncan.
Duncan and Snow watched the monitors. After about ten minutes the forms finally made their way to the house. Duncan moved a camera to get a better view of on that was at the living room window. They were vampires alright, this one had procured a sledgehammer from someplace and was attempting to bust in the window. He wasn't having much luck, it was a clear Kevlar plastic, 4 inches thick of bullet proof window. The best he could do is mark it up. Then beyond that was the layers of steel. Seeing the window would not give, the vampire moved to trying to smash the wall of the house in. The plastic siding cracked, but that was about as far as he would get. The walls were made of layers of plates. Like a master lock, and were a foot thick and the plates were secured together in Kevlar. The place was a fortress. A very costly investment for Duncan that was now paying off.
"Engaging sprinklers, time to see if this works." Duncan announced and he pushed a few buttons.
On the monitors you could see the sprinklers come to life, high volume sprinklers spitting out water and garlic juice.
"They aren't melting Duncan, I told you its the faith behind the items, not the item!" Snow screeched. "Use the lights, what are they going to do? Use them!"
"No, they are expecting that, they are smart, they have a plan for that, plus I don't know how much the lights can take, this was theory after all." Duncan said.
"Duncan, vampires aren't as smart at you think, look I don't have time to explain right now just use the lights!" Snow implored him once more.
"You said you need to have faith, right?" Duncan asked.
"You have faith, don't you Snow?"
"Yes, much Duncan, but what-" Snow started.
Duncan grabbed her by the arm "Come here!" He said, and reluctantly she followed. He took her to a small room with equipment and pipes in it, it was small where they were but through a hole in the wall she could see large tanks.
He pointed to a pipe. "This is the pipe made of the religious items, you have faith, put your hands on the pipe and command with faith!" Duncan told her.
"Duncan!" Snow cried.
"Do it, at least try!" Duncan implored her.
Snow threw her head back and said words in a language of some kind, it involved a series of growls and then Snow put her hands on the pipe. Her eyes softly glowed.
Duncan looked at her slightly startled, then remembering himself rushed out of the room and looked at the monitors.
It took a few seconds, he wasn't sure if it was going to work, nothing was happening, they were disorientated for sure, running every which direction. Then, they started smoking as though they were being doused with acid, just like Snow said. She was making the water holy. He had done that for two reasons, one was to see if the pipe would work, which it hadn't, then, to see if what she said was true, if werewolves truly were the protectors, a gift from the creator, then she would be able to bless the water going through the pipe. It gave full credence to everything she said.
"Keep it up Snow, its working, its working!" Duncan bellowed towards the room where Snow was. Disorientated, the vampires were unable to run to safety. Soon, all in the yard burst into flames in the rain and holy water. Soon the motion detectors went silent.
Duncan ran into the water room to tell Snow of their success. The smile on his face dropped instantly when he saw her passed out on the floor, her hands still on the pipe. "Snow!" He yelled as he rushed to her. He pulled her hands from the pipe. She was cold. Her eyes, the irises had lost their yellow grey and gone white. "Snow! Snow, Snow!" Duncan called to her and shook her lightly. He checked her breath, she was still breathing. He put his finger on her neck to check her pulse. He jerked his hand away. Not that he was a pro on pulses, but he had never felt one like that before, incredibly strong, and fast. When he had his fingers on it he could literally hear it, it came though him loud!
Snow moved slightly, and groaned. He touched her forehead, she was ice cold. She groaned again then spoke faintly. "I, - I should have told,-" she started.
"It's ok, Snow, don't try and speak" Duncan said.
"Bite me, I'll talk if I want to." Snow said and a faint curve of a smile formed on her lips.
"Should have told you, using pure faith-" Snow started to cough.
"It, it takes a lot out of you." Snow started to laugh slightly.
"Snow, is there anything I can do? Can I get you anything?" Duncan said in a worried voice. "I'm sorry, I didn't know!"
"I know you didn't, now though, you can stop doubting me, right?" Snow asked as she slowly started to sit up a little.
"Yes, yes, I believe you now, no doubt. You proved it to me." Duncan assured her.
"Good, now get your ass up and help me get my ass up, then get me some water please." Snow said as she looked at him.
Duncan got up from beside her, took her hand and helped her stand. Her strength was more than he expected, even in her weakened state, she nearly pulled him over as he helped her up. Once he had her up, she wobbled a bit and he let her put her arm around him and helped her walk to a chair. Then he went to get her a cold bottle of water from the vault fridge.
They sat there in the control area of the basement bunker. Duncan didn't say anything to her until she had recovered more. "So, we got em did we?" Snow asked.
"Yup, you got em, didn't work till you put your hands on the pipe.
The two of them sat there, Snow was looking better, more life back in her. Duncan didn't know why but she had what he would call a cantankerous look in her face. He shrugged it off and busied himself with the monitors and generator readouts. He soon became aware of a scent in the room. He tried to place it. Was that the smell of melted vampire? Couldn't be, it smelt kind of sweet, pungent and sweaty. The vault was air tight anyways, just like the upstairs was once he sealed it. He got up and walked around the basement area, trying to find the source of the musky sweet order. Was it from the sprinkler system? No, nothing coming from there, not even a garlic smell. As he moved from the control room, the smell diminished, but it was strong and was starting to fill the vault. He was going to check the fridge but the aroma hit him hard when he entered the control room. He liked the scent. It was almost a perfume kind of smell, comforting.
He sat down. He looked over at Snow. His face showed a puzzle, he knew the smell but under the current situation and the series of events couldn't place it. "Do you smell that? A sweet musky, pleasant smell?" He asked her. "Are you wearing any perfume? Scented oils?"
Snow laughed loud and hard. She leaned forward and put her hand on his shoulder. When she did, the smell became very strong. Reality was just starting to surface in Duncan's brain.
"Duncan, I'm very aroused right now, I'm extremely randy. Killing vampires makes me horny." Snow said to him.
Duncan flushed red, he now recognized the smell, he had just never smelt it so strong before, however, he had never been around a horny werewolf before. Also, he became aware of his own arousal.
"Ok, I think we are safe to go upstairs, don't you?" Duncan said standing up and walking towards the door, thus removing her hand from his shoulder tactfully.
When Snow didn't reply, he looked back at her as he unlocked the door. She had put her legs up on the chair he had been sitting in and crossed her arms over her chest. She looked pissed.
"Look, Snow, we just met, ok, I'm not about to have sex with you." Duncan said.
Snow guffawed at him. "I never asked you too, nor do I intend to. You take yourself to seriously Mr. Galt. Wolves aren't like vampires, we don't screw anything everything, however, unlike prudish humans, we're not afraid to talk about being turned on. Wolves, Mr. Galt, made for life, and a wolf your not so don't get your testosterone all over boiled." Snow said mockingly.
Duncan looked to the wall, he felt slightly embarrassed, and slightly belittled. He didn't know what to say, so he opened the door and started to leave. "Also Mr. Galt, it's perfectly acceptable to admit you find me attractive, you could at least be honest to yourself, even if you can't be to me."
Duncan stopped and turned back and looked at her. "I did tell you so, you even said you could smell that I was. What's more to be said, Miss Snow? Why do I have to keep going back to it? Or are you trying to seduce me?" Duncan said to her coldly.
"Seduce you? Please, you seduce yourself, you look at me with hunger in your eyes, I've seen it." Snow said.
"Unlike you, Miss Snow, I am not an animal, I can resist my urges." Duncan said and turned and strode upstairs.
"Bastard!" Snow yelled after him. Snow bolted after him. When she caught up to him at the top of the stairs she grabbed him and slammed him against the wall.
"What are you going to do Miss Snow? Beat me up, toss me around the room to prove your superiority over a meager human?" Duncan said to her angry face, with a calm cool tone.
"Listen you bastard, don't ever call me an animal like that. Don't-" Snow started to cry. "Don't act like them." She sobbed and fell against his chest covering her face with his hands.
Duncan suddenly felt ashamed of himself. He didn't know why, he felt he hit a very sore spot with her. Since he lost his wife, he had become cold to any affection, her being a werewolf didn't help. Duncan put his hand on her back and walked her to a chair.
Snow sat down. She regained her composure and sat silently.
Duncan finally broke the silence. "You're right, I am attracted to you. You are beautiful to me. I was when I met you as Betty Coswell. Remember, I kept looking at you. I was infatuated with you then. You crossed my mind daily for many years, and still have crossed my mind occasionally even after all these years. I never saw you again, only my father went back for the funeral, because Russ was his brother. He never went to the grave site though, and I never even passed through the town." Duncan said calmly, and honestly.
"My clan, my pack. They rejected me, cast me out." Snow began. "I don't fit in." She looked up at Duncan. "I'm a born werewolf, it's very rare for one to survive past their first year, the ones that do become alpha's. Werewolf society is very proper. I'm sure you realize, I am not. I fit the profile more of a rouge. Something a born werewolf cannot be, it is not accepted. Rouges are turned werewolves, they operate outside of the clan, for the good of the clan, getting their paws, hands dirty so the clan can stay clean. We only hunt vampires. Rouges can hunt humans who protect vampires, humans who serve them willingly, knowing who it is they serve." Snow became distant. "My mother is a turned werewolf, my father, is a born werewolf. My mother is very arrogant, she looks down on humankind. It is part of her attitude that has held my father back in the ranks of clans. I was supposed to be born an alpha male, and take my fathers place and mate with a born female, restoring our clan among the clans, bringing my father honor. My mother wanted this, she had hoped I would die in my first year, leaving the lineage open for a male to be born and survive. She has never let me forget that I failed to die. It is her, not my father that brings dishonor to our clan. Werewolves are very Victorian proper, but they are not to be boastful in their deeds. My mother is a very proud person. If it were allowed, he would divorce her, or kill her to restore his name. But that would be the greatest dishonor a werewolf could do, we mate for life, whether we like it or not in the end. Sometimes the mate we chose, changes. My father admits his mistake. My mother has always been boastful and proud." Snow looked over at Duncan.
"It was my grand parents you met at the Coswell farm. My mother insisted on a more flamboyant lifestyle. She demands the best in life. My father accommodates her. I changed, I became gothic, and freely displayed it. Piercing myself, tattoos, all are forbidden among werewolf society. I caused my own condemnation and being disavowed. It is an alphas place in their season to leave their clan and to find a mate and create their own clan, expand the protectors. My time came early, caused by my own actions. My grandfather gave me that card with your name and address on it. I was to find you and protect you. The vampires are hunting you, they want you for what you did." Snow looked away from him and fell silent.
They sat in silence for close to an hour. Daylight would be soon.
Duncan wasn't even in the room mentally when he spoke. "I met my wife in college. She majored in forensic sciences. She became a coroner, we both went to work for the government. Top secret stuff. We worked in what would be called X-file cases. We were both CIA. One day a body, torn to shit, was brought in. It had been sucked dry of blood. The official reports said the blood had been boiled from the body. My wife was in charge of doing the autopsy on the corps. The body was only a few hours old, but the organs, skin, everything was like it was mummified. She was using a special mix of saline that contained plasma to bring the tissue to a state she could conduct certain tests on. She had cut several samples from the body and used the mix on it and ran some tests. The results were astonishing. The tissue came back to life. She had the chest cavity open and decided to she what would happen if she pour a substantial quantity into the open carcass. The result was astounding, and, in the end, devastating. The body came to life and attacked her. She was saved by a guard who kicked the body back and opened fire on it. My wife was hurried out and examined. The body was taken to an incinerator and burned. That much was a good thing. My wife only had a small nick on the side of her neck. No infection, nothing deemed dangerous. She was held for observation for three days, and since nothing happened, released."
Duncan stopped briefly when Snow made a noise. By the expression on her face, she had already guessed what happened next. "I had been in the field, at the area the body was found. I reported on what was happening. My team was sent home, a mop up crew was sent in to destroy what we had found. Some of them died in the operation. The agency declared the operation a success and destroyed all reports filed on what happened. I was informed the events never took place. I was told if I ever spoke of them again, I would be in direct violation of national security orders and committed to an insane asylum in a foreign country. It was never said, but I would have been lobotomized to protect the information. I returned home to find my daughter drained dry, and my wife standing over her. She attacked me. I shot her, I emptied the clip into her. It didn't phase her. She knocked me across the room and escaped. I reported the incident to my superiors, informed them I had attached a tracking device on her when she attacked me incase she escaped, which I fully expected her to do, after the events I was involved in over seas. In the end, we were able to track her to the coven she would now be a part of, we used the knowledge of the vampires we had and exterminated all of them, including my wife. My daughters body was incinerated to prevent any chance of her becoming a vampire and escaping and spreading this 'infection' to the human population." Duncan finished.
It was several minutes before Snow spoke. It was a hard story for Duncan to tell. She could smell the remorse in him. The pain. The anger. She spoke softly, slowly. "So, how does my grandfather fit into this?" She asked.
Duncan was waiting for that question. "Some of the coven survived. Not all of them were at the location when we raided it. We hit during daylight hours, for obvious reasons, not knowing that at times coven members would hide out in safe areas they had set up in case they couldn't return to the main coven area before daylight. Some 30 of this coven had been hold up in another part of town. They often did when they partied on the weekends. They would be out choosing choice victims. Ones to bring into the coven. When they found out what happened, they came hunting the ones who took out their friends. Somehow they were able to trace all of us. One of the vampires found me and had grabbed me. He intended to take me high in the air above the city and let me drop to my death, he said he wanted to hear me scream all the way down. Your grandfather, in your larger form, attacked the vampire. Disemboweled him and removed his head. That is when I started to believe in werewolves. I never reported that event to the agency."
Snow nodded. Wise choice not to report that. "I saw his eyes, I knew what it was, the eyes of a wolf. That's how I knew what you were when I saw you. I had seen that before."
"You look tired." Duncan said to Snow. "I have a guest room if you want some shut eye."
Snow smiled. It had been a long time since she slept in a bed. "You're a kind man Mr. Galt, thank you, that would be wonderful." Snow answered.
Duncan led her upstairs, the lights came on automatically as they walked upstairs. He showed her to a large, neatly kept room. Snow sniffed the air. The room smelt new. She could tell Duncan had never had any actual guests here. The only human she could smell in the entire house was Duncan. She wasn't surprised, all things considered, he would keep to himself.