You rise from your seat, smiling at the familiar creak of ancient mahogany. However old the chair is, it's still beautiful; you run a pale finger down the red wood, marveling at the patterns of inlaid gold. All of it brings back memories.

"Chlorin?" The voice rips your from your reverie. "What are you doing?"

"Thinking," you sullenly answer, your voice surprisingly hoarse. Your throat aches, though you aren't sure why. "What do you want?"

"N-nothing," answers a shaking voice. You turn and face the visitor. It's a human boy, his eyes amber—you hardly ever see brown eyes anymore; he must be descended from the indigenous Okkunans. He wears a robe of blue and white, the sleeves jaggedly cut off, showing bare arms covered with spiderwebbing black strings. The hood is down, and you can see his freckled face and pale neck, throbbing with veins veiled by skin.

"If you want nothing, then why are you here?" you ask.

"I want nothing. My m-master wants…" He searches desperately for words while you watch with unwavering eyes. "My master has a command."

"Tell me what he wants." You wonder who the boy's master is—the prince of Okuun, some priest, or, perhaps, a foreign baron.

"First, he says, 'Don't kill the messenger.' "

You sigh. "Does that mean it's bad news?"

"No, it's a command! The rest of the message is: 'Gather your army and attack at twilight tomorrow. Sunshine. Final. D is acceptable, but take prisoners.' " The boy stops talking. "I'm assuming you know what all of that means."

"Of course I do. Mind your tongue," you snap. "Is that all?"

"What do you mean, is that all? Of course it's all. I stopped talking, didn't I?"

"Shut up, boy," you hiss, leaning closer and hiding a smile as he stepped back, afraid. "Obviously you haven't learned not to talk back to a vampire. Do you know what happens if a vampire doesn't like you?"

"What?" He's trying to keep his cool, you can tell, but it isn't working. The veins pound against his skin, and as you lean closer you imagine you can heard his heartbeat.

"If you keep talking like you have been…" You pause dramatically. "You'll… find… out. Now go!"

He walks away very quickly and, despite yourself, you grin. The reason they send you the insolent ones, you suspect, is because you really love scaring them half to death. There's nothing like looking a leering vampire in the face to remind you to mind your manners.

The message is serious business, however, and you turn your mind quickly to that. It's not from a baron or prince, but from a fellow vampire. Probably Rordain, too, though it could be from one of his lesser followers. But this is surprising, though not shocking, news: The vampires are attacking the city of Sunshine tomorrow at sunset. "Final" means that they were making it the final battle, whether it means victory or death. There have been fifteen or twenty battles in the past two months, and they have been grating on your nerves, especially all the sunlight involved, as well as the counting of the dead. Attacking at twilight meant that you and your fellow vampires are in your element. The battle might—and probably will—take hours, so you will get the advantage of midnight, the best time of night for vampires.

The part of the message that said "D is acceptable" means that it was fine to kill humans, even innocents. You chuckle a little as you remember the beginning: "Don't kill the messenger." Rordain had made a rare joke. The messenger boy will probably be in the battle tomorrow, and he was reminding you not to kill the child (however stupidly insolent the boy was).

You gather your thoughts and leave the room. Tomorrow's twilight isn't that far away and you, as the leader, need time to gather your thoughts—and your troops.

You go to bed that night with eyes wide open, soaking up the darkness of the room till they're used to the dusky half-light. However long you lie in bed, sleep can't overtake you. You don't even have any thoughts in your mind. You tiredly notice that your hands look like white spiders dancing across the blankets. That thought is pressed into your mind as you drift off to sleep.

((A/N: I'm not at all sure I'm going to continue this. I'd really like feedback—I know that 2nd person can be hard to read (and write) at times, but what do you honestly think? It's so hard to write present tense too, so if I screwed up and got my tenses wrong—tell me! If you review me, I'll review you. Thank you so much!))