Fall of 1997

No!" the young girl screamed as her father hit the ground. The masked figure looked at her and turned and ran. His black trench coat whipping in the rain and wind. She whipped out the knife her dad had made her carry. She ran quickly behind him trying to catch up. She yelled at him and gave in to the urge to run even faster. She knew her father had taught her to pace herself because the other person will tire faster than herself. She had just about caught him when a black Jaguar turned the corner speeding and fish-tailing uncontrollably.

The car ran in front of her and the man jumped in. The car sped away with her father's murderer in the back seat. She tried to catch the license plate number but it was covered in mud.

She turned and jogged back toward her dying father. Her mind was racing as she hurried toward him. She dropped to the ground and wrapped her arms around her father. He gave her a slight squeeze trying to reserve his energy. His head dropped and he was gone. His blood a midnight red.

"Daddy, daddy are you okay? Can you hear me? Please daddy wake up. Please don't leave me here." She sat up and searched through his pockets for his cell phone. She found it and dialed her mom's cell number and tried to calmly tell her what had happened. She found it extremely difficult.

After her mom hung up, she dialed nine-one-one. She was hysterical by this time and the operator was getting nowhere in getting her to calm down. She finally told the young girl she was going to trace the cell phone and that all the help she needed was on the way. The young girl was crying and shaking terribly. She felt a presence sneaking up on her.

A man appeared almost instantly and asked her what had happened. She had almost finished explaining about her father being murdered and her chasing the person who did it, when the ambulance arrived. The man looked at her sorrowfully and said, "I'm sorry for your loss, Adora, but I must leave." He bent down and gently bit her neck. She relaxed into his bite, and she hardly felt anything at all. "I'll be watching you. Please be safe for your father's sake." He turned to leave.

"I don't even know your name and how will you be watching me?" she sounded a little offended at his sudden retreat. She might have been young but she wasn't blind. This man was absolutely breath-taking and she didn't want him to leave. She tried to stall him as much as possible. As pathetic as it may have been she threw herself t his feet and pleaded that he not leave her.

He stood her up and gave her a quick hug, "I'm sorry, but I must leave now. My name is Alexander." He put her down again and turned. Within an instant he had disappeared into the night.

The ambulance arrived and she was still staring at the place where she last saw him. The paramedics rushed up to her and was questioning her about what had happened and they were caring for her dad at the same time. They were rushing and yelling things that she didn't understand. She was in shock that's what one of the paramedics was saying. She did know what that meant. She didn't feel like she was in shock. She felt sort of . . . normal. That's odd, she thought to herself, I should be in shock but I feel comforted, calm, and relaxed. Who was that man that was here. He was so strange.

She finally started listening to all the noises around her and realized there was so much noise that she felt uncomfortable. She heard the rushing of several bodies around her and she didn't like it.

" He's gone. We're to late, " the mortician said to no one in particular.

She heard him and asked him who was gone. She didn't hear anyone leave except the boy , and they didn't know he was even there. She wasn't prepared to hear that her father was dead. She wouldn't accept that. She sat down on the ground and hugged her knees up to her chest and started crying.

One of the paramedics came over to her. He put his arm around her to comfort her and when he pulled back her hair from her face he noticed two puncture wounds on her neck closest to her main artery. The wounds seemed new but they had already started to scab over. The paramedic looked at her and calmly asked her what her name was.

"Adora. Adora Acacia Crown. Why?" she asked him suspiciously.

He calmly explained to her that it was procedure. She didn't appreciate being questioned as if she was a criminal.

"Adora why do you have two puncture marks on your neck?"

"I don't have puncture marks on my neck," she added skeptically.

"I'm afraid you do."

"No. I. Do. Not." she replied more to herself than to him.

" If you say so, but I think you do which just makes me wonder if you were conscience during the attack."

"I'm telling you that I do not have a puncture wound on my neck." She was getting angry now. Who did he think he was to tell her what was on her body. Just to prove him wrong she put her hand to her neck and started feeling around and then she felt a bump . . . no TWO bumps. She started screaming and crying even harder than before.

The paramedic looked at her stricken and at a loss for all words. He wrapped her in his arms and tried to reassure her that nothing was wrong. She knew better he thought to himself as he stood up and pulled her to her feet, she's young but she knows better. He guided her gently toward the ambulance.

As she swore to avenge her father's death a young man stood just a bit away as not to be noticed. His lips stained red from her blood and he smiled to himself and toward the young girl he promised to watch over. He turned and as soon as his cloak swished in the air . . . he was gone.