Chapter 1

Leah ran blindly through the woods, clothes sopping wet from her tumble into Apache Creek.

She gasped for air lungs burning as her legs continued mechanically manuvering between trees.

Branches tugged at her white blonde hair and scratched her skin leaving raised welts. Leah glanced over her shoulder eyes wide with terror. She turned forward and pumped her muscles harder to get everey bit of energy into speed. The toe of her shoe caught on a root causing her to tumble.

No sooner than she was down, Leah jumped back to her feet shivering as the mournful howl of a wolf nipped her heels. Blood ran down her legs after scrapping her knee on the root. Horrified ran down her cheeks unchecked. Another howl and she could almost feel the beasts breath.

The wolf growled and leapt at the girl taking her to the forest floor leaving flying into the air from impact.

Leah's screams rang for miles around as the beast tore into her and then silence….

June ,24, 2005 Saturday

Sometimes I wish I was a tree. That's an odd wish right? If you knew me…if you knew my problems then it wouldn't seem so strange.

Trees are free to do what they want. Nobody yells at them for not cleaning their room or getting an F on a Physics test. Trees aren't grounded when they lose all their leaves in autumn, I was when I shaved my head in eighth grade. My mother didn't want me to" waste my beautiful locks." as she put it.

Trees can be as tall as they want without being made fun of. I get called giant a million times a day for being able to look the school's quaterback in the eye.

Trees don't have to drive their mother's to the Emergancy room when they drink too much. They also don't have to clean the vomit from the couch every Friday night.

Most of all I wish I was a tree because trees don't cry when at their friends funerals… trees don't even have friends.

It was a beautiful service really. Almost all of Apache Creek High School was there to mourn for their lost classmate, Leah Marie Robertson.

I stood by her coffin holdiong her hand. It felt so cold despite the warm day. Her face no longer contained the rosey tint in her cheeks. Her baby blue eys that always shone with laughter were forever closed. Tears ran down my cheeks as I smoothed her hair away from her face. Hundreds of people all around me yet I felt so alone. Leah wasn't going to be back , ever. All these people who barely ever saw her were sobbing like crazy as I spoke in her memory. Why should they cry? Did they know her favorite color? Did they know that she ate mustard on her Thanksgiving turkey? Did they know that she wouldn't eat any fruit unless it was covered in salt and pepper? No! So why were they crying. I stared out into the crowd of hypocrites who mourned Leah's tragic accident in the woods where she took her own life. I was disgusted. Leah would never kill herself. Only I knew what really happened. My throat aches even now to shout the truth to the heavens. Leah didn't commit suicide. My best friend was murdered in cold blood by a wolf. Not just any wolf a werewolf. A werewolf that she loved with all her heart. Her boyfriend Zach.

The night she died I could've saved her, but I thought she was crazy. Werewolves? Yeah right as if they existed. I thought she was drunk or high. Zach had been taking her to all these wild parties for the past couple months, and she was making friends with shady people. I will never forget the fear in her eyes as she stumbled in through the front door.

She looked a mess; covered in mud, her clothes torn.

"Brianna!" She'd yelled. "Brianna, he's after me." Her eyes were wide as she clutched my arm tightly.

"Who?!Who's after you?"

"The werewolf! He's-" Her words cut off as she pressed something into my hand. In my concern for Leah, I ignored whatever-it-was completely.

"Leah, what are you talking about?"

Leah shook her head, causing fine strands of gold to wash over her face. "I have to go. You're in danger if I'm here."

I caught her hand as she turned away. "Leah, you can't go."

" You don't understand, Bri. He'll kill you! I can't let Zach..." She jerked her arm away from mine and backed away. "I love you, Bri."

Those were her last words to me. The next day her body was found in the woods three miles away from my house. Her throat was ripped out, and a hastily scribbled note lay beside her body. "This is nobody's fault I just can't stand to be here anymore."

I snapped my journal closed with a sigh, and put it in the top drawer of my desk.

Since we were seven, Leah and I have been keeping journals. We were the only ones allowed to read them. Leah's journal now rested by mine in the drawer.

A lump grew in my throat as I tried my best not to cry. In all my sixteen years I have never been a crying sort of person...until I lost the best thing in my life.

Leah lived three houses down from the two story Victorian that my mother and I shared.

My father was alive when we met at the sweet age of four. He took me to the park on that fateful Tuesday afternoon.

Thatwas the year I loved pigtails so much that it was all I allowed my hair to be done in.

What can I say? I also liked pink then.

I played in the sand box, wearing my favorite pink overall shorts with matching balls on the elastics in my ebony hair.

Edward Farkus, the neighborhood bully, pulled my hair and poured wet sand on my head.

I slugged him right in the nose and knocked him back on his butt. Unfortunatly, he landed on top of another girl who was playing, ever so happily, in the sand.

She cried, and Edward ran away from the scary little girl that was me.

I moved to comfort her, when I noticed she wore exact same outfit as me. We could've been twins if she wasn't British and I wasn't the exact image of my Native American ancestors. Long black hair, dark skin and mahogany eyes. Even then I was TALL!

We hit it off immediately, even though we changed dramatically over the next year-falling in love with Ninja Turtles and Captain Planet- we were the same. Best friends for ever and ever.

We entered high school ready to find that special boy, and the teachers even meaner. We both remained boyfriend-less that first year, yet the teachers were exactly what we expected.

Sophomore year, Leah found Zach. He didn't go to our school, but boy, was he hot! Tall , taller than me. Gorgeous auburn hair, and the most beautiful green eyes that have ever graced this planet. He was every girl's dream, and he was all Leah's.

She was so proud of him, though I wascautious at first,he grew on me. I evenbecame his friend. Then...he killed Leah. It was her words that clued me in. He somehow convinced her to write that note, then went after her. Since I was her friend, she came to me first, but realized that I was in danger, andleft. Sacrificing herself for me.

I wasn't big into supernatural stuff, but now that I have to track Zach down, I think I just might develop a keen interest.

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