Prologue: The Storm

It would be remembered as the night that would change her life for ever.

The wind howled like the lone wolf howls at the blue moon, bringing down what ever was in its path too weak to stand. Sam was a young woman living in a small flat in New York with her young golden retriever dog Ash, who was currently lying at her feet.

At the time that the storm peaked they were watching the News on CNN, or rather she was watching the news, while Ash would be paying attentions to the noises outside, picking up his head when he heard something strange and frightening such as a particularly hard gust of wind, or a stray branch hitting the window. The television always seemed to help soothe her nerves when there was a storm like the one that was raging outside.

"The meteorologists have been unable to comprehend the odd weather that has been occurring across the state. Although it has been storming for days now the storm system seems to be stationary: no other state has reported weather like this. It is almost as if this storm is waiting for something to happen…" The rest of the information that the anchor man was telling the viewers was lost to Sam as a chill ran up her spine.

It had only dawned on her now that something was not right. Something was going to happen and there was no telling what that would.

A frightening cold breeze came through the house causing her to shiver and get up to get a sweater from her closet.

As she attempted to get up she noticed that Ash was extremely still but with his head high in the air, as if there was someone in the house. This only furthered the fear that Sam was feeling and she bent down trying to see if she could get a feeling of what was happening from his eyes and body language. And that was when she noticed he was not paying attention, his eyes were blank and it seemed as though he was paralyzed with fear.

Sam immediately began to panic and got up from her chair to go into a more secluded area of the house. Ash thrown out of his state of shock, got up and followed her. She quietly and cautiously made her way into her bedroom where she turned on all of the lights that she could possibly find along with a number of candles. Finally finding a matchbox, and with shaking fingers, she opened the matchbox, took a match out and lit it, eventually and with some difficulty managing to get the lights lit, and as if death itself were after her she dove for her bed and wrapped herself completely in the sheets and duvets. With Ash right by her side still having the very blank look in his eyes, Sam wrapped her arms around Ash and waited for this everlasting storm to finally die.

Hours went by without the slightest sign of a let-up. Sam was beginning to relax a bit by now and Ash had found some sort of peace; as he slept in her arms. Everything seemed as though it had just been a spook of her imagination. After all, it has been known that dogs get scared of lightning - who wouldn't if they had seven times better hearing than people do - and the thunder was loud enough as it was. It seemed as though the lightning and thunder were right on top of them. On the other hand it was no use just sitting in bed rotting away.

So she got up and began to make her way over to the kitchen to get herself something to eat. But before she could even get to the threshold of her bedroom, an icy breath blew through the room extinguishing the candles. Sam turned around, expecting to see that she had left a window open, but everything was securely shut. The only thing that could be noticed was that the storm had increased in strength and ferocity. Ash picked up his head; and with a whimper, he jumped from the bed and, with his tale between his legs, crawled under it. At the instant that Sam began to make her way to check if there were any windows open, the loudest thunder anyone had ever heard came crashing down. It sounded more like an animalistic roar than like thunder. The entire flat shook from its intensity. And along with it the lights in the bed room began to go out one by one, starting the furthest away and coming closer and closer.

The fear that sprung into her at that time was paralyzing. This is what it must be like to be stuck in a horror movie she thought as she stood rooted to the spot like a midnight doe in the middle of the street paralyzed by the headlights of a car. It was not until another branch whipped into the window; that Sam's senses came flooding back to her. Turning on the heels of her feet, she spun around and ran for the window. All along the lights kept on chasing her out of the bedroom, and into the living room, urging her on until she was cornered at the window. She turned around, anxious as to what was going to happen. The darkness came closer and closer. As if the Gods only wanted to heighten her fear, there was an incredibly high-pitched animalistic wail, which initiated from the bed room. Sam's head whipped to face the direction where the noise came from, expecting something horrible to come, only to find Ash race out of the room, faster then the wind could ever fly, and jump right into Sam's arms. The extra weight of Ash proved to be too much for her and she fell to the ground. All the while the darkness continued to approach faster then before. Sam held onto Ash as though her life depended on it. Both of them sat there trembling, waiting to see what their fate would be. As the darkness came to the last light, Sam closed her eyes and buried her head into Ash's smooth fur, not daring to look… but nothing came.

Sam opened her eyes to be met with nothing but darkness. The storm outside also seemed to have died. All that she could hear was the combination of her rapid breathing and Ash's panting. Sam began to loosen her hold on Ash, and relax herself.

"That was some scare, huh boy?" she asked him as she ruffled his fur behind his ear

"Come on, let's get up and get some lights," she said as she went looking for the lights. She made for the light switches, but they would not turn on. The storm must have cut the power. After stumbling around a bit, around she managed to find a match box and attempted to get some candles on, but the matches would not even light. It was as though they were wet, but as she felt the matches and the match box, neither one of them were damp.

It was only then that she realized just how quiet it was. There was nothing, no birds, no voices from the street, no cars, nothing; only her breathing along with Ash's and her racing heartbeat could be heard. There was something that just was not right; then she heard loud and continuous whimpering. She abandoned the matches and made her way over to Ash to try and calm him.

"What is it, boy?" she asked him with a calming tone. "It is over now;" as she continued to calm him down; she noticed that he was looking in the direction of the window. That was when she saw it. Large ship being sailed by its crew through a storm in the window, there was one figure in particular who caught her attention. Amidst the action there was one man, who seemed familiar - yet completely strange he was tall and had brown hair tied in a ponytail. As the man turned to her, she saw that he had hazel eyes which she found her self falling into. Everything else around her disappeared… somewhere in the distance she heard Ash barking… and then it happened.

A bright light flashed at the window, blinding her. After that everything went black, it was although she was falling and there was no way of pulling herself up…