Authors Note: I sincerly appologize for the wait, things have been hectic. So here's the re-written version of Chapter Four. Thanks to all who've stayed with me through this!
Chapter Four - A Life Unveiled
A pair of blue eyes stared down at me, the shadow swallowing the rest of the being's body. I stood, paralyzed, in the middle of a field, unable to break the connection that was between me and those eyes. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't seem to break away, couldn't blink for fear of what would happen once the connection broke. The person smirked, and a snout grew from the person's mouth, a wolf snout, and white fur sprouted up, covering it. Soon the face also contorted into that of a wolf's, but with a terrifying edge to it. The eyes had changed color and now were a very dark, blood like red. The creature emerged from the shadows, hunched over. The fur was still white but seemed to have a darker tinge to it. It looked like a movie version of a werewolf. Thick, muscular arms which ended in large paw - like hands with claws, sharp enough to cut through almost anything, large legs, muscles taunt, with claws coming out of the feet. A tail whipped around behind the creature as well, the tip a dark blood red that matched its eyes almost perfectly. I felt my eyes widen in shock and terror, and fought to take a step back, but I was rooted to the spot. The thing stalked closer until it was right in front of me. It grinned, revealing a mouth filled with sharp, dagger like teeth. Its breath was putrid and saliva dripped from its jaws. It brought a huge paw up, preparing to slice me into pieces, when I screamed.
I woke up screaming and sat up straight. I panted and found that my body was covered in perspiration. My mother came bursting into the room, looking around wildly.
"Everything alright?" She asked, looking at me concernedly. I nodded, "Yeah, bad dream, sorry." She sighed and leaned against the door frame, "No problem, I was just making sure you're okay." I nodded and she walked out of the room, making her way to her own. I looked at the clock beside my bed. The time, 5:15, shone brightly in neon green at me. I groaned and lay back down, willing myself to fall asleep. Much to my dismay it didn't come. From the kitchen I heard the phone ring. Sighing, I stood up and walked out of my room and over to the phone.
I picked it up, "Hello?" I said groggily.
"Kasey, is this you?" It was Josh, and he sounded relieved.
"Yeah, it's me Josh." I said, smiling slightly
"Is everything alright? I heard a scream a little while ago."
"Yeah, everything's okay, it was just a bad dream." I blushed slightly at the fact that he could hear me.
"Oh, okay, just making sure." I could hear a smile in his voice.
"Well," I started, "I should get going. See you at school."
"Yeah, suppose so..." His voice trailed off, almost absentmindedly.
After I hung up the phone I headed to the bathroom and turned on the shower. While I waited for the water to heat up, I looked at my reflection in a mirror across from the door. My black hair was slightly mussed, and my eyes were semi-dull from waking up. When the mirror started to fog up, I pulled a towel out of a cupboard, stripped down, and stepped into the scalding water. My breath left me for a moment as my body adjusted to the heat. Everything started spinning suddenly and I leaned against the shower wall for support. Blinking rapidly, I waited for everything to stand still once again, but when I did, I felt as if I had put on glasses for the first time, even though I didn't need them. Everything was clearer than before. I could see the steam rising from the shower, see every droplet of water for a millisecond before it hit something and disappeared. I shook my head; sure that I had to be imagining things. But when I stopped nothing had changed. I pulled a bar of soap off of a shelf beside me, brought it close to my nose and inhaled the scent. I stopped halfway, coughing and dropping the soap, my eyes burning. That was weird, since it never happened before. I could still smell it as well as everything else in the bathroom, including myself.
'Okay,' I thought to myself, bending over to pick up the soap, 'pull yourself together Kasey, it's nothing big, your eyesight and sense of smell have just increased, no big deal.'
When I had finished with my shower and had dried off, I walked back into my room. Beneath me the worn carpet felt weird, almost like I was stepping on dry grass. The towel also felt different than it usually did, I could feel every fiber move against me when I moved. Strange, just like my eyesight and sense of smell. When I walked into my room, I felt like I had stepped into another dimension. The dark colors hurt my eyes a little and I felt as though I had stepped into another world. Every little detail on the walls, furniture and everything else in my room was coming to me in high definition.
"Is my body like, rebelling against me or something?" I mumbled to myself as I pulled out clean clothes and got dress. It was strange, the way the fabric felt when it brushed against my skin. Every time I moved I would feel every fiber in the clothing against me.
"Insane, I swear I've gone insane." I said softly, looking at myself through the mirror in my room. I frowned and opened my mouth, examining it. I gasped and my eyes widened. My teeth looked sharper than they had yesterday, not as pointed as a vampire's but more, I don't know, canine. I pushed my thumb onto one of them and hissed in pain as it broke through the soft skin. Blood bubbled up in an almost perfect circle. I watched it in morbid fascination, waited as it slowly broke the bubble and slid down my finger and onto my palm. Breaking my gaze away I wiped the blood on my jeans before opening my desk drawer and pulling out a small band-aid. Putting it over my thumb I threw away the paper the band-aid came in and walked out of my room.
Looking at the clock in the kitchen, the time read 6:10. Good, I wasn't going to be late. Picking up the homework I'd left on the table and shoved it into my bag. Walking to the door I pulled my shoes on, made sure I had my key, and walked outside. As soon as the sunlight had hit my eyes I winced, leaning against the door frame and waited for my eyes to adjust to the light. As soon as it didn't hurt as much, I opened my eyes again and started walking to school, my eyes down so I wouldn't go blind from the sunlight. I waited until the coast was clear to cross the street to the school.
The halls were empty when I arrived, and for that I was grateful. I didn't want to have to have to deal with anyone, not today or right now at least. I shoved everything into my locker, pulling out the books I would need for my classes. Turning around, I found myself face to face with Michael, the guy I had knocked into at Sean's. Time seemed to stop as our eyes connected, but they didn't hold me as Sean's did. They were colder than his, more calculating. He surveyed me, taking in my appearance before he smirked, turned, and walked away. I shook my head, replaying what had just happened. More kids were arriving, and I knew it was time to head for my classes before I got into more trouble. Thank God it was only a half day.
The day ended at 11: 15 and every one was ecstatic, including the teachers, that the year was over. Seniors, mostly girls, were crying and hugging one another, making pledges of friendship no matter what came. I pushed my way through the crowds of people, struggling to open my locker and get out of here before my health was in danger. Matt and Adam were both the center of attention, of course, cracking jokes about the teachers, none of which were funny to anyone but their cronies. I rolled my eyes and walked around them, eager to get out of the school. Matt saw me, grinned, and stalked in front of me.
"If it isn't the little vampire. How about a little kiss because it's the end of the year? But no bites this time, I only donate blood to the Red Cross." He taunted. I narrowed my eyes, thoroughly fed up with him.
"Why, if it isn't the little jock," I mocked, "Why don't you go shove off before I do it for you? Oh, but don't hurt yourself thinking too much. The coach will have my head for killing his only player without a brain. Wait, make that one of the two players without a brain, I wouldn't want to exclude your little buddy Adam." I smirked at Adam, who just stood their dumbfounded, as did Matt. I walked around them, and it must have triggered something in Matt's mind, for he grabbed my arm tightly.
"I told you to shove off..." I growled and wrenched his arm off of mine before shoving him away. He slid across the floor only stopping once he was a good three feet away. I glared as a warning to the rest of his friends and continued my way out of the building.
Once I had gotten home, I tossed my backpack onto the ground, crossed through the hallway to my room, entered, and promptly collapsed onto my bed, thankful that the school year was finally over. I must have fallen asleep, because the next thing I knew, my stomach was killing me. I looked over at the clock. 6:55 glared up at me.
"Shit," I said, the words accidentally spilling out of my mouth. I winced as a small wave of pain over came me, making me lay back down on my bed, but the pain didn't stop. I stood up slowly, and almost instantly the pain stopped.
"Talk about weird," I thought to myself and pulled my boots on. I picked up my purse, made sure my stuff was in there, and headed out, leaving a small note to Mom on my way out, explaining that I had already left for the night and would see her tomorrow if not earlier. When I walked out, I came face to face with Josh, who was just about to walk up the first stair. My eyes widened, "Hey, is something wrong?" I asked, concerned. He'd never come here before. He looked up at me and smiled, shaking his head, "No, I'm okay. I just thought I'd stop in and say 'hi', but you seem to have beaten me to it."
"Oh, well Josh, I was just on my way out and Mom's away." I gave him a small apologetic smile. His own fell slightly, "Oh, okay. Sorry," he mumbled and started walking away.
"Josh," I called out to him. He turned back to face me.
"Maybe another time you can come over." I gave him a small, promising smile. He grinned, "I'll hold you to that." And started walking away again.
Pulling out my bike from the shed beside our house, I biked my way to the lake. I figured it'd be better than walking again, in case that stomach ache came back and I had to high tail it home. I stopped in the same place I had met Sean before, and saw him standing a good two feet ahead of me, his back facing me. I leaned my bike against the trunk of the tree and cleared my throat. He turned to me, a small, thin smile crossing his face.
"You're twenty minutes late." He said softly. I nodded, grimacing, "Yeah, sorry, lost track of time. Look, I haven't been feeling well-"
"If you're referring to the stomach ache, it was just a reminder to meet me." He interrupted. I stood there, shocked for a moment, before I glared at him, mumbling "jerk" under my breath. He smiled, "I told you that you would regret if you didn't come, and that's just one of the reasons. I'm glad you took the hint and came, because you wouldn't like the other consequences that the stomach ache can have if unattended to."
"You've thought that all out, haven't you?" I asked suspiciously. He chuckled softly, and nodded.
"Indeed I have. But that's not why I asked you to come." He said. I leaned against another tree across from him.
"Oh really now? And why did you have me come here, oh mysterious one." I mocked.
"I need to show you something. You are aware that tonight is the full moon, are you not?" He asked. I nodded.
"And, if I'm not mistaken, some very, ah, strange things have been happening today, correct?" Once again, I nodded. A small smile broke across his face, "Excellent. You are a werewolf then."
I sighed, "Again with the werewolves? Don't you think you're a little old to believe in them- Sean, what are you doing?" He had fallen to his knees with his hands supporting him. Slightly confused, I bent down to his level, looking cautiously at him.
"Are you okay?" I inquired. He looked up at me. He was panting as if he had just finished running and sweat was running down his face. He nodded, "Just... back up a little... give me some room." His voice was harsher and sounded forced. Confused, I nodded and did as he asked.
He gave a soft growl, and I was horrified to find that his face was contorting - lengthening into a snout. His clothes seemed to dissolve into his skin, black fur replacing it. I winced as a loud crack reverberated through the forest, followed by several others though not as loud. His spine had cracked into more of an arch, and his legs were strangely shaped, like a wolf's. His eyes seemed to be spacing out more than before as taking on a more almond - like shape. Something furry moved behind him, its color also black. I couldn't move and just stood there, shocked. He turned to me, his eyes the same blue I'd known them to be in his human shape. I took a step backwards, unsure of whether to stay or run. He gave me a wolfish grin (no pun intended) and let out a loud howl, which sent me stumbling back, my hand flying to my bike. He let out a bark, as if pleading with me to stay. I complied, but kept my hand on the handle of the bike in case anything went wrong. He stopped moving and began to transform again, only into a creature far more hideous than his wolf skin.
The fur became more bristly and took on a slight red hue, almost as if it was bloodstained. Long, thick claws grew from his paws, and his snout began to elongate and fill with teeth as sharp and long as knives. He turned his nightmarish face towards me, and I gasped when I saw that his beautiful eyes had turned to a blood red. My hands closed tighter onto the bike's handle, the plastic digging into my skin. He snarled, as if angry that I was thinking of running away, and ran over at me. I felt a scream rip through my throat and my hands flew for my purse. They were pinned to my side as the beast trapped me under its weight. My bike flew a few feet away, landing with a crash on the grass. Before my eyes, Sean started changing back to his human form. I was shaking by the time he'd completely transformed back.
"What the hell was that?!" I demanded, pushing him off of me. I ran a shaking hand through my hair, and he looked up at me. I'm sure my eyes were wide with disbelief and I was sweating, although not as bad as he was. His shirt was soaked with his sweat and he was panting heavily.
"Sean, are you okay?"
"Yeah, I'm fine. That just takes a lot out of me when it's forced. But, I had to show you. That's what you are. You're one of my kind, a werewolf. Look, I know it sounds crazy, but it's true." He stood up slowly, looking me in the eyes. I shook my head.
"You've gotta be kidding me, tell me you're kidding Sean." I was practically begging, and I heard the whine in my voice. I started towards my bike again when he didn't say anything.
"I'm out of here, I can't do this. I'm a vampire hunter, that's it. Not a werewolf, or anything!" I called back at him.
"Kasey, stop!" Sean called out.
"Do you want your mom to die, or your neighbors?" He asked, desperate. I stopped righting my bike and turned to him.
"What are you talking about?"
"Do you think I'm the only one? I'm not. There are others who won't know that you don't know what you are. That won't stop them from killing you, your family, and your friends. Anyone who might be close to you or notice that you're missing." I turned around and glared at him.
"I didn't ask for this Sean-"
"I know you didn't, and I'm sorry it has to come to this. But you need to come with me, please. It's the full moon, we have a gathering that you need to come to. Please, Kasey." He walked closer to me, and I swung my leg over my bike.
"How can I be a werewolf? It isn't possible." I said disbelievingly.
"It's from your father's side, I knew him." Sean said. My brow furrowed.
"How do you know I'm my father's child? How could you possibly tell without having met me?"
"Your eyes, they're the exact same." He said simply. I sighed, and got off the bike.
"Alright, when do we have to go?" I asked. He looked around, as if waiting for someone.
"I'm waiting for the signal that it's all clear. You can never be to sure with...." He trailed off.
"With what?" I asked, curious. He turned back to smile reassuringly at me.
"Don't worry about it Kasey." I looked at him incredulously.
"You just threatened me with the death of my family, friends, and everyone around me, and you tell me not to worry about what might be causing it? God, you sure need to take a look at your priorities and put them in a better order than they are in." I shot, not even bothering to mask my irritation. He laughed softly and met my eyes.
"Kasey, I'm not telling you because I'm not 100 sure if my facts are correct or not."
"So just tell me what you think is right, or what you know is factual." I wasn't about to give up that easily. If he thought so, he had another thing coming entirely.
"You can never be sure with fledglings of different clans moving around. The night belongs to us, the creatures of Mother Moon, and the vampires, the eternally damned. There are several different werewolf clans that would like us dead-"
"Why's that?" I asked curiously, taking a seat on the ground. Sean looked over at me, before sitting down next to me.
"They don't like us because we're one of the strongest around. Technically speaking we rule Kent County; it's been that way for years. Some clans think it's their turn for the power, so they go off searching for young pups of ours to kill, hoping that we won't have a future. They'd even go as far as to kill you since you're new to being a Werewolf. We can't lose you Kasey; you're far more valuable than you know."
Just as I opened my mouth to say something, a pure white wolf bounded out of the forest, followed soon after by a light brown one. They stopped right in front of us, the white one tilting his head up to face me. I couldn't help but be mesmerized by his deep golden eyes. The wolf barked, and strangely it sounded familiar.
"Are you ready, Kasey?" Sean said by my side. I nodded.
"Good. Now, I want you to look up at the moon. When the clouds move, you will change. Whenever you look at the moon you change. It becomes harder not to look up at it during a full moon, but if there's no moon and you need the change, envision it in your head. That will help the process." Sean said. I did as he instructed, turning my gaze up to the now cloud covered moon. The clouds moved away slowly, giving me a clear sight.
The pain began as the last cloud moved out of the way. With a cry of pain I fell to the ground on my knees. Beside me Sean had followed suit, only he didn't seem to be in as much pain. Something inside cracked, my spine no doubt, into an arch, and I felt fur rip out through my skin. I couldn't help but scream in pain, it was pure agony! My face seemed to elongate, I could feel the bones cracking in my arms and legs, which were steadily growing shorter. Something else split out from my backside and brushed against my right leg. Startled, I looked back at it. A fluffy tail greeted me, its fur as dark as the night sky above. Looking down I saw I had paws, sharp nails protruding, adding to my pain. I could feel the tears run down my furry face. But the pain had stopped with that last addition, leaving me breathless and weak.
The white wolf walked up to me, nuzzling my nose, 'Welcome to the pack, Kasandra.' He said with his voice in my head. I looked up at him, confused.
'We're all connected through our changing. When we're in different forms we cannot understand one another. The pain of the changing will subside with time as you get used to it. But come, we must leave now, the ceremony will start shortly.' He said and started walking to the woods. Sean looked over at me, giving me what looked like a smile. I returned it and stood up shakily, my legs wobbling. I tried walking and it was easier than it seemed, so long as I remembered which leg went next. But I fell down soon after my attempt to run. The brown wolf helped me up, 'Don't worry, it gets easier as you try it more.' It was a female voice in my head this time, and I thanked her, trying again, slower this time. I didn't fall down, but rather stumbled a few times. But hey, it was better than bruising whatever pride was left, right? Cautiously I followed the white wolf, making sure I took it easy so I could get used to it quicker.