As the sun rose the next morning, the searing pain still hadn't stopped. It wasn't as bad as it had been at first, but I still couldn't concentrate. The pain was the only thing able to hold my attention.
At some point, I remember my mom coming in and putting a cold cloth on my forehead. Then, she put something sour on my tongue and forced me to drink something and swallow. After that, the pain began to slowly recede as I drifted back to dreamland.
"Alyssa, get up. I need to talk to you," my mom said, gently shaking me awake.
I sat up warily, waiting for the pain. It didn't come, which surprised me. I had expected the horrible pain I had experienced that morning. Instead, I felt only the dull pain you feel after having the flu.
"Here, drink this," my mom said, handing me a glass full of something red. It looked like V8 juice. Yuck. I hated that stuff. "It's not V8 juice," she added, smiling at my scrunched up nose.
I nodded, taking the glass. I didn't bother asking her what it was. I had a feeling I didn't even want to know.
"Mom, why didn't I notice any odd things about you? I mean, if you're a vampire and there are tons of signs pointing to it, why didn't I notice anything?" I asked. The thought just came to me. Why hadn't I noticed anything if the signs were so obvious?
My mom smiled sadly. "It's part of the curse, Honey," she said. "No one that isn't a vampire but will become one never sees the signs in members of their family."
I sighed. Everything was always linked to the curse, wasn't it? The stupid, horrifying, evil curse.
I didn't say anything for a while. Neither did my mother. She just looked at me. Well, more like she just stared at me. But, uh, didn't she say that she needed to talk to me? Why wasn't she talking? Why was she just staring at me? She was starting to freak me out.
"Can I hang out with my friends today?" I asked when I'd finally had enough of the silence. Besides, I really did want to hang out with my friends. I hadn't been able to yesterday so why couldn't I today?
My mom sighed. "No, sorry," she said. She was looking at my to gauge to my reaction now. At least she wasn't staring at me and lost in thought like she had been.
"Why?" I asked. Ok, I admit I whined. But, come on, I wanted to see my friends! I had just turned 13, which was a huge deal, and I hadn't seen my friends yet! We'd been planning what we were going to do for my 13th birthday for months!
"Because . . . " she hesitated because going on. Whoa, my mom hesitating? She never did that! And what was up with all of the sighing? She never did that either. Sighing and hesitating was my thing. "Well, Alyssa," she continued, "I'm afraid you might get thirsty and, well, try drinking their blood."
Had she really suggested what I thought? How could I do that to my friends? They were the only people I could truly count on. I would never, ever hurt them!
"Now, Alyssa, it's not that I think you would want to hurt them," she said sighing. There was that sigh again. What was up with that?
"I know that you would never hurt them on purpose," she continued. "It's just that, well, you might not be able to control it. Lots of new vampires hurt the people they care about because they can't stop themselves."
What was she saying? I knew vampires were monsters, no matter what Jonathan said. It was pretty obvious they were. But I would never, ever do anything like that. I didn't want to be a monster and I refused to believe I was. This wasn't my fault. I hadn't chosen this life for myself.
Suddenly, my head started hurting again. I needed to get some more rest. Maybe all of this stuff about being a monster had finally caught up to me.
"Mom, I think I need to rest again," I said, hoping she would get the hint. I needed to be alone and think Luckily, my mother understood and left, closing the door behind her.
Instead of staying awake and thinking things over like I'd planned, I feel asleep soon after my mom left. I woke back up and realized it was already four in the afternoon. My mom must have slipped in while I was sleeping because I found some more of the red drink and crackers on the table beside my bed.
I rolled my legs over the side of the bed and sat up. I realized how hungry I was and quickly devoured the crackers and drink.
After that, I wasn't sure what to do. I considered going to see what my mom was up to but quickly decided against it. Who knew what she would try to tell me this time and I don't think I can handle anymore stuff today. I was already confused enough.
I realized I was still in the clothes I had been wearing yesterday so I went pulled some clothes out of my drawer. I knew I was going to be doing much else today so I put on some lounging pants and an oversize T-shirt .
After that, I opened the drawer below my bed and pulled out the notebook I used to poetry. Though I knew I wasn't very good at writing it, I thoroughly enjoyed writing poetry. I decided now would be a good time to my feelings out on paper. Who knows what I would come up with my it was worth a try, at least.
I reached over to my cd player that doubled as a radio on the stand beside my bed and turned it to my favorite station. Fergie's latest hit 'Big Girls Don't Cry' came on. I loved that song. It was definitely a good song to write to. But, no matter what Fergie says, big girls DO cry. Sometimes at least.
I'd been writing for about an hour when I heard a soft knock on my door. I quickly shoved my poetry back in the drawer. I refused to let anyone see it.
"Come in!" I shouted, figuring it was my mom.
Wrong. It wasn't my mom behind the door. It was someone I thought I'd never see again.
Uh oh, I thought. Jonathan was standing in my door way and I was wearing lounging pants and an oversized shirt. How horrible!