Saturday, April 14, 2012

Talking to Senara

Hi, this is Bree again. So, I posted previously (wow, I've been writing a lot of the entries lately!) about how we made a deal with the fairy folk, they called in the favour by asking us to take in a fairy girl temporarily as an "exchange student" learning about humans, and yesterday our guest, Senara, arrived.

For several reasons, the family decided that Senara should share a room with me. We could have shifted things around so she'd have her own room, but that would have made things rather cramped for the rest of us... and even more importantly, we wanted to keep an eye on her just in case, since we're not sure why the fair folk decided to send her to us. Once we met her, there was a third reason too - she seems so unsure here, I want to be able to keep her company. I'm not sure if it'll help that I have fairy blood or not, since I was raised human. Maybe it's better than nothing? Either way, I think it's best for Senara not to be alone all the time.

Yesterday, we just kind of gave her space and let her process things. That's not to say we didn't talk to her. We did, but when she kept it on the small talk level, we didn't push for a deeper conversation.

After giving her a day to settle in, though, I decided it was time to have a real chat. Senara was up in our room, so I knocked - it's a little odd to knock when it's my own bedroom, but I didn't want to be impolite - and found her sitting on the floor staring off into space out the window, even though it was dark. It seemed like she was meditating or something, so I didn't interrupt. I just waited till she was done.

When Senara finally looked away from the window, I thought maybe she had tears in her eyes. She quickly managed to hide it, though, and soon she was smiling again. I was pretty sure she was smiling for my benefit, not because she was really happy all of a sudden. I think she just didn't want me to see that she was upset.

"Do you miss your home?" I asked.

"Hm...?" Senara replied absently, like she hadn't really heard me.

"Do you miss living with the other fairies?" I asked, rephrasing slightly.

She nodded, then blushed a little, like she'd said something rude. "It's nice here, too, though," she replied diplomatically.

"Well, this is only temporary," I said, trying to be comforting... but somehow Senara took it in a completely unintended way.

"Thanks for reminding me!" she snapped sarcastically.

At this point, I was rather baffled. She had just said she missed her home. So why was she mad at me for reminding her that she's just a guest here, and she doesn't have to stay forever? I wondered if maybe I'd made her feel unwelcome. She has to know that this is payment for a favour on our part, not something we just volunteered for. We probably would have been willing to host her either way if she'd asked, but there's a lot more going on here, and that complicates things. I tried to backpedal a bit.

"Not that we don't want you to have a nice long visit or anything," I assured her. "You can stay as long as you want. Heck, never leave if you don't want to go."

Senara stared at me for, like, a full minute. Now, a minute doesn't normally seem like a lot of time, but when someone is using it to look you directly in the eye, a minute seems awkwardly, interminably long indeed.

"You don't know?" she finally asked. "No one told you...?"

I waited for her to finish her sentence, but it eventually became clear that when she trailed off, she had trailed off for good.

"Told me what?" I asked.

Senara shrugged and looked down. "Nothing," she said in that quiet tone that tells you it's definitely not nothing.

Realizing I wasn't likely to get any more info by pushing, and I might make her just clam up entirely, I said, "I just meant that if you want to be with the fairy folk again, you should remind yourself that you aren't stuck here forever or anything. As far as I'm concerned, though, you can be my roommate for life if you want."

Senara looked at me with this expression like... well, like I was being sweet but totally missing the point. "Thank you," she replied, and changed the subject to a complicated question about the constellations we can see from this latitude that I couldn't answer without looking it up online. I kind of got the feeling that sending me off to look for information was on purpose so I'd stop questioning her.

So... is it just me, or was that a little weird? I mean, I get it if she's just homesick. I would be too, if I randomly got sent off to live with her family, even if I wanted to be an "exchange student" - and we aren't totally sure to what degree this was even actually Senara's choice. I can't help thinking there's something else going on, though. Something deeper than just missing familiar things and people.

Am I reading too much into nothing?


She's Here!

Hi, this is Bree. Sorry it's been about a week since our last blog post. We've been busy with school stuff, and not a lot has really happened in the meantime. Gia did her werewolf transformation thing three times, uneventfully. Each time it happens, she seems to adjust more quickly, and to experience less shock over it. I think that gradually, it'll become part of her normal life. Or at least her "new normal," as most of us in this family have had to redefine our sense of what's normal several times.

We had a really nice Easter. Some of us went to mass in the morning, then we had a yummy family dinner. The food was traditional Newfoundland holiday food: turkey, potatoes, gravy, stuffing, vegetables, and salt beef. Then we had lemon meringue pie for dessert. After we ate, we had an egg hunt. It was too rainy and cold to do an outside one, but we had fun hiding and finding our dyed hard boiled eggs indoors. Hunting eggs was followed by lots of Easter candy.

Since the holiday weekend, things have been busy but mundane. School has been hectic, because we're getting toward the end of the semester. We've been doing our usual extracurricular activities. Kaya, Fiona, Marie-Grace, and Cécile are eagerly awaiting the casting for their spring recital and story ballet; they'll find out on Monday what parts they got. All the students are in the recital, but not everyone is cast in the story ballet, so they're excited to find out if they get to do both.

Today, though... we had other big news!

In the afternoon, shortly after we'd gotten home from school, the doorbell rang. Ever since the fair folk told us how we were supposed to repay our debt, we've kind of jumped every time someone comes to the door, wondering who would be there. If it would be... her. Our "exchange student." Would she be nice? Mean? Would we be friends? Would she be indifferent to us? Or would we have an enemy living in the same house with us?

We got apprehensive every time someone knocked or rang the bell. Up till yesterday, it was always just a friend coming over, or a delivery, or someone collecting money for charity. When we opened the door this afternoon, we knew this was something different.

She was about my age. Small, slight, slender. Her hair was blonde and long, and her eyes were hazel, but there was something about the shape of them that suggested she had some East Asian ancestry, in spite of her colouring. She was wearing a sort of robe, green with white designs that looked like flakes of snow, and despite the fact that it's still chilly here in April, her feet were bare.

The girl smiled at us... but there was something hesitant about the smile. She was charming - deliberately so - but I could tell she was pretty nervous, too.

Suddenly, I felt bad for her. We've had a lot of emotions about the fair folk lately  - apprehension, frustration, fear. But we haven't really thought about how our "exchange student" would feel about the exchange. Just about how she would act toward us. In that moment, I realized she was probably a lot more scared than we were. After all, this was our house. We have a big family, and we're quite close knit. This girl was all alone. And that's a lot to walk into.

"Hi," I said. "I'm Bree."

I stuck out my hand, and the girl grasped it lightly and then released it instead of shaking it, like I saw Inna do with the fae woman in the clearing.

"Greetings," she replied. "My name is Senara. Thank you for allowing me into your home."

Senara smiled, but she looked a little grim as she stepped through our door. Since then, she's mostly been in her room - which is also my room. I'm going to be sharing with her. I've been giving her some space, but it's getting to be about bedtime, so I guess we'll kind of have to talk then. I'm looking forward to getting to know her, and finding out why she's really here.


Friday, April 6, 2012

The Favour Has Been Called In

Hey there, this is Bree. There is no real news on our werewolf hunt. We've still been doing pretty much the same thing Kaya described when she first told you about our plans, but so far we've had no luck. We're going to keep trying, though, because the werewolf that bit Gia is still out there.

Tonight is the "official" full moon for our time zone, but the moon was full enough last night that Gia had her first transformation of the month. Everything just seemed easier this time. It didn't take as long for her to shift forms - she went into the safe room before sunset, so we didn't have to try to persuade her to go after she shifted - and overall she seemed a lot quieter and less destructive than last month. Last time she destroyed some furniture and caused some serious damage to the walls. Yesterday, the worst that happened to the room was some scratch marks around the door.

When she was human again this morning, Gia confirmed that it has been easier. As well as being faster, the transformation didn't hurt as much this month. It seems like her body is getting used to it. She also said that she felt slightly more in control of the process this time. Although last night she couldn't have fought the change, she thinks that with time, she may learn to be able to decide whether to change or not, or even possibly to change at other times. For the first time, she actually seemed positive about the whole thing, rather than just grimly accepting - so we tried to be positive and encouraging, too.


The biggest news today isn't werewolf-related, though. Remember how when we defeated The Elders, we had asked the local fairies for help... and they agreed, but told us we owed them a favour? Well, ever since then we've been kind of waiting for the other shoe to drop. Whatever they wanted us to do, it was probably going to big, because the favour they did for us was enormous. Inna had also warned us that it was likely to be something pretty odious, because the fair folk take favours seriously and don't waste a favour owed on frivolous things.

When Inna got back from jogging this morning, she told us she'd seen a fairy circle in the local park. We knew this was meant as a message for us, because normally the fair folk don't venture into the city. Even the woods in a city park aren't woodsy enough for them. If they even came this close to our downtown row house, they must really want to talk to us.

What could that mean? Clearly, the favour was getting called in.

I went to the fairy circle with Inna, because both of us have fairy blood, so they prefer to deal with us than with the other family members. (Fiona has fairy blood too, because she and I are biological sisters, but she's only ten years old, so we don't like to bring her to these meetings because we don't totally trust that it would be safe for her.) We waited for about twenty minutes, and then three of the fair folk emerged from the woods.

Last time we met with them, we saw fairies of all shapes and shades and types, but these three were all pretty human-looking like me and Inna, because we were in a more public place and might be spotted by "civilians."

"Greetings, Inna and Bree," the fairy spokesperson said, and we gave our greetings back to her. (She seemed to find it amusing that I greeted her with "hi," rather than something more formal.) The fairies seemed calm and relaxed, which made me nervous. What exactly were they here to ask? They made small talk with Inna for a few minutes, but my mind was focused on our debt to them, and I couldn't really think of anything suitably mundane to say.

Finally, they got to the point. "We have decided how you will repay the favour you owe us," the spokeswoman said. I braced myself, but she continued, "A young relative of ours wishes to learn more of the human ways. She will stay with you as your guest, and observe the activities of the mortals. It will be as though she is... what do the humans call it? An exchange student. Will you accept those terms?"

"Yes, we will," Inna replied... as I knew she would to pretty much whatever they asked. To say no, or even to question it further, would be a major breach of etiquette, and could have bad consequences. She had explained to me in advance that she would have to agree unless they asked us to do something totally immoral.

Inna briefly grasped hands with the woman to seal the bargain, then the fae melted back into the woods so effortlessly that even though I was watching them the whole time, I barely saw them go. As we headed back toward home, I was pretty relieved and elated. That wasn't bad at all! I had expected a task that would put us in life-threatening peril. Putting up with a guest for awhile, even if she was annoying, seemed like nothing in comparison to what I'd anticipated. Once I'd gotten past my initial reaction, though, I noticed Inna was still pensive, and even more visibly worried than before.

"What's going on?" I asked. "It seems like we got off easy..."

"Yes, it does, Bree," Inna replied, biting her lip. "That's what concerns me. What they ask is nothing. The fair folk aren't fools. They know that in exchange for help in a battle, a major favour is owed. Why would they choose something so small, unless...?"

"Unless there was more to it than that?" I guessed.

"Exactly," Inna replied, sighing. "I wish I could have asked, but I would have been pushing my luck after what they did for us. They might have killed us both for such rudeness. We'll just have to wait and see."

I nodded, glad that she hadn't gotten us ripped apart or eaten. "Any idea what the catch might be?"

Inna shook her head. "No idea. I can't think of anything at all. The fair folk can omit information from an agreement of this sort, but they can't outright lie. I can't think of anything they might be hiding, since what they did tell us has to be true. And... that is the part that worries me the most! The not knowing!"

I could see why. We didn't have time to dwell on that, though, because the sun was starting to get low in the sky, and we all try to be home when Gia transforms, so there's more help to control her just in case. I've been thinking about it the whole evening, though.

What do the fairies really want? What is it that could be behind this simple request?


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Can't Go Home Again

Hi, this is Tabitha again. After I posted the last entry, Kirsten read it and said, "It was pretty good, but..."

Oh, Kirsten. There is always a "but."

I took the bait, as I knew I was supposed to, and said, "But what?"

"Well..." she replied, as though she hadn't planned what to say, although I knew she had.

"But what?" I repeated, rapidly running out of patience.

"Well, you kind of left a lot of loose ends!" Kirsten said in a burst of words.

"Like what?" I asked, although I knew which ones she meant. See, this is all part of my denial. Some things are too hard to think and talk about. Believe it or not, becoming a vampire and being hunted down in the forest are not the hardest parts to speak of. So I talked about those things, and left out the rest.

Kirsten replied, "Well... you didn't tell them why you still live here, even though you have enough self-control to be around humans now. You didn't tell them what happened to your grandparents, or to your mother and stepfather. You said that the authorities think you ran away, but not what that means in practical terms. You left people with a lot of questions, Tabs!"

Much as I hate to admit it, Kirsten is right. Now I'm going to answer them.


It was October when I got here. At that time, though, I was more like a wild animal than a person. I couldn't control myself, and I didn't see much point in trying. As far as I knew, I was a monster. So why not act like one?

It took awhile for my new family to convince me otherwise. To convince me that I could do better, and I should try. It took even longer for me to learn to control my vampire instincts, rather than my vampire instincts controlling me.

During that time, I couldn't have been around humans. Sadly, by the time I was myself again, both of my grandparents had passed away. I felt horrible, thinking they were worried about me at the end - but fortunately, no one told them I was missing. They thought I was living happily with my mom. By the end, both of them were pretty out of it mentally, so I don't think they would have had sufficient memory to realize I was no longer visiting. I still really wish I'd gotten to see them one last time, though, even though I understand it was impossible.

My biggest regret is the people I killed in the woods, but my second biggest is that I never got to say goodbye to my grandma and grandpa. They raised me, and loved me... and they deserved a goodbye. I'm glad, though, that they didn't have to be aware that anything was wrong. Taking an out-of-control vampire to visit a nursing home just wouldn't have worked, but I think they knew I loved them. I found out they had a picture of me in their room until the end. It means a lot to me that they still cared.

My mother and stepfather were another story.

The Greens and Roses knew that it would be awhile before I could live anywhere else but here. I'm in control of myself most of the time now, but I still need some help. I'm not yet ready to go live among regular people who don't understand what I am. My new family is also sensitive to the fact that my stepfather used to hit me and my mom didn't stop him, and they understood that I was conflicted about whether I would ever want to live in my old home, even if I could. They would never have forced me to go back.

Having visits was a possibility, though... or even just letting them know I'm safe. They didn't do a good job of raising me, but I didn't want them to be afraid I was dead. I thought maybe it would be okay if they knew where I was, and that I was happy and didn't need any help from them.

By December, I was doing well enough that my new family felt they could broach the possibility with my mom and stepfather. Blakeney and the girls were supposed to see them at a holiday gathering anyway, so they thought they could bring it up subtly.

They did. And as soon as they said my name, my stepfather said, "Frankly, it's a relief to me that she's gone. Tabitha was trouble." My mother nodded, and added, "It's better this way."

Better that they thought I was a runaway? Better that I might be dead? Apparently so, as long as I was out of their way. It hurts to know they felt that way - although I'm glad my family told me the truth about what they said - but I'm not really surprised they said it. I'm glad Blakeney and Bree didn't tell my mother or stepfather where I am after all. They didn't deserve to know.

The police in my old hometown think I'm a runaway. It seems like a "typical" story - teen foster kid, always getting in trouble, ditches foster home and school and takes off. The authorities have no reason to think there was foul play, or that I didn't leave voluntarily. There are no leads about where I went. My parents aren't exactly beating down the precinct doors with their concern, and their indifference contributes to the police assuming I'm fine somewhere. Technically I'm a missing person, but there's not a whole lot of effort going into finding me. Either I'll come back, they figure, or I won't.

I won't. I have a family here that loves me and appreciates me. It took me a long time to believe and accept that, but I do now. My new family doesn't think they'd be better off without me. They don't think I'm a burden, even under the circumstances where they found me and had to take me in. They want me here. Finally, someone wants me. I have no intention of going anywhere else.


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Before I Was Here

Hi, this is Tabitha. Last time I wrote a blog entry, people seemed to like it and asked me to write again someday. So... today is the day, I guess. I've decided that I'm finally going to start talking about the past... how I went from having a relatively normal life to being a feral vampire, living in the woods and fleeing for my life from both vampires and vampire hunters.

I don't talk about my human life very much. I've never written about it on the blog (although Clare mentioned it vaguely,) and I don't really ever talk about it offline, either. There are a couple of reasons for that. For one thing, of course, it's kind of painful, especially how it ended. But the bigger thing is, it feels... done. Distant. I remember it, of course, but a lot of it feels like it happened to someone else. Everything changed so much when I became a vampire. It almost seems like a different life. A lot of the time, it's just hard to see the relevance. I'm starting to realize that attitude is not entirely healthy, though. It may even be a form of denial. So I'm going to try talking about it, and I hope it'll help my past and my present "lives" feel more connected.


I think the main reason my parents decided to get married and have a kid is that everyone else in their small town was doing that. All their friends were coupling up and becoming parents, so they did the same thing. It didn't go very well. Before long their marriage was in trouble, and they were having trouble finding the motivation to take care of me. They asked my grandpa and grandma to look after me for "a little while"; I actually ended up living with my grandparents from age two to age fourteen.

I was generally pretty happy with them. They were kind, took good care of me, and I knew they loved me. Sometimes it was hard to fit in with my peers, though. I was the shy, quiet kid who lived with two elderly people. (I know the "shy and quiet" part will be difficult to believe for those who have seen me as an out-of-control vampire, but seriously, I was.) My grandmother always had me dress in very old-fashioned clothes, because she was from a different era and she thought it was more proper. I got made fun of a lot at school, and I didn't have the easiest time making friends. A lot of my best memories are of time I spent with my grandma and grandpa, or alone, rather than with kids my own age.

There's an exception to that, though. After I was turned into a vampire wasn't the first time I met some of the Greens. My grandparents lived next door to some of our other relatives (my great-aunt and great-uncle, I think?) and those relatives would have their relatives come visit. Among the visitors at first - usually twice a year - were Kirsten, Felicity, and Molly from one family, and Bree from another. After a couple of years, there were some changes; Bree's parents had a falling-out with the rest of the family, so she stopped visiting. Then Charissa was born, and I got to know her, too. Yep, we're all related!

It was really fun to watch the Green family grow as they added more members. Sometimes I was jealous of how much fun they seemed to have, but I wouldn't have wanted to leave my grandparents. I really looked forward to visits from the girls twice a year, though, and we had a lot of fun together, playing when we were little and then just hanging out more as we got older.

The last time I saw the girls like that - on a visit, with life still normal - was December 2010. Shortly after that, things fell apart for me. And that's where the story starts to get tough.

I never really thought of my grandparents as old. They were just the people I lived with, the people who took care of me. They were a generation older than the other kids' parents, though, and over the course of that winter and spring, their health started to get worse. My grandpa had to go into a nursing home, because he needed more care than me and my grandma could provide - and then just a couple of months later, my grandma had to go live there too.

I guess I had always kind of thought of myself as an orphan - but I wasn't, really. Both of my parents were still alive, and they came to visit now and then. Awkward, stiff, painfully polite visits where no one had much to say to each other. By the time my grandparents had to go to the nursing home, my mother and father had gotten a divorce, and my mother had gotten remarried. I went to live with my mom and my stepdad, but it was incredibly weird and uncomfortable after spending my whole childhood up till that point living somewhere else.

My mom had to work really long hours, and she wasn't home very much. I rarely saw her. My stepfather had taken early retirement after being injured at his job, so he was home all the time, and that was... awkward. We fought a lot. I didn't really know him, and he didn't want a kid - especially a teenager who wasn't his biological child. He and my mom were already having problems, and me being there added to that. My behaviour wasn't the best, either. I was really struggling with the situation, and I was acting out. He got more and more frustrated with me. First he started yelling at me, and then later, he started hitting me when he was mad.

One time he bruised me up pretty badly, and my teacher noticed. She called Child Protective Services, and I got sent to a foster home while he took anger management and he and my mom did parenting classes. I didn't particularly want to go back, but I didn't have much choice. The social worker said once they completed what the court ordered, I'd be living with them again.

I thought about running away, but I didn't... which ended up being kind of ironic, because what did happen had the same effect, and the police still think I ran. If I'd run away then, my life would have been a lot different. In the long run, it probably would have been worse, though. It all worked out for me eventually. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

My foster parents lived in kind of a bad part of town, and I hated having to walk anywhere after dark. My foster mom sent me to the store to buy milk one night, and on the way there I noticed a couple of people following me. That didn't look like a good thing, but there wasn't a lot I could do about it. I pulled up my jacket collar and started walking faster, hoping they'd lose interest or I'd get to the store before they got to me.

Neither of those things happened. They cornered me on one of the empty back streets, and dragged me into an alley. I knew they had something bad in mind - but it wasn't what I assumed. The one guy pulled down my coat collar, and sank his teeth into my neck. What happened next was... bad. The transformation was painful. I think I eventually passed out.

When I woke up, I was in the woods. Alone. With no idea where I was, or how I'd gotten there, or where the people had gone, or what had happened to me. It was dark, but I didn't know if it was still the same night or if a whole day had passed. I didn't really know what to do. In school they teach you that when you're lost in the forest, you're not supposed to go anywhere - you're supposed to wait to be rescued. That sounds good in theory, but it didn't seem to apply in my case, because I wasn't even sure anyone would realize I was missing, and if they did, they weren't likely to start looking in the woods; I had to be miles and miles from my foster home, to be in such an isolated area. Location aside, I'd been attacked by (what I thought at the time were) crazy people, and for all I knew, they were going to come back and hurt me again. I started walking, hoping to find a road or a house or something.

As I covered more ground, though, I realized I was thirsty. Really thirsty. My plan changed to finding a stream or a creek or something instead. Once I'd had a drink, I would just follow the flow of the water, because another thing I remembered from school was that this will usually eventually lead you to human habitation. When I wasn't so thirsty anymore, it would be easier to keep walking until I got there.

I eventually found a stream, and drank from it... but it didn't help in the slightest. My throat felt just as parched, and my stomach felt just as empty. I felt weak, my limbs were tired - but I also felt strangely agitated, like there was something I needed to do. After an hour or so of following the water, I smelled food. I thought maybe it was a campsite or something, and maybe they'd give me something to eat. (Or I could steal it. I know that sounds awful, but I wasn't feeling a lot of moral compunction about taking stuff at that point.) As it turned out, it was a campsite. But that was the moment I realized I wasn't human anymore.

Instinct took over. I killed the campers for their blood. I felt horrible afterward, standing there with my red-stained hands... but what made it even worse was that I knew I wouldn't be able to stop myself if it happened again.

My instincts also told me that I needed to avoid the sun. I would travel during the night, and during the day I would find someplace to hole up and sleep. I wasn't really thinking clearly at that point - but the drive to survive is strong. I slept in a cabin (fortunately empty for the off-season) and then started walking again once night fell. I didn't really know where I was going. After what happened with the campers, I knew I couldn't just walk back to town and resume my ordinary life. I was something different now. A monster. Unfit for human society. I walked because my animal brain was telling me to keep moving, and my higher-level thinking didn't have any better options to suggest.

Within a couple of hours of nightfall on that second night, I realized I was being followed. I sped up my pace, and did my best to stay out of sight. I'm pretty quick, agile, and light, so that came naturally to me. (Although having red hair doesn't help when you're trying to camouflage yourself.) By the following night, I figured out that the vampires who had turned me were after me again - I had guessed what they were as soon as I started craving blood - but I couldn't figure out why they'd pursue me now.

I mean, they'd had me completely in their power when they cornered me and bit me. I even passed out. I was a helpless target. I hadn't had a chance to escape because I was unconscious; I was apparently just dumped in the woods. So why were they now chasing me?

It took me another full day and most of another night to figure that out. They were hunting me for fun. They had made me into a vampire for this express purpose - because they wanted to chase something, and humans didn't provide enough challenge. That made me all the more resolved not to let them catch me.

They never did, although there were a few more close calls. (And unfortunately, three more campers crossed my path, and again the thirst took over and I lost control.) After a few more days, though... now I was purposely avoiding civilization, not seeking it out... suddenly there was another group in play. Humans, deliberately following our trail. At first I thought they were just hunting the hunters, but then after a near miss with them too, I realized they intended to kill me also if they found me. They were less sneaky hunters than the vampires - but they also had gear. It was the human hunters who set the bear trap that nearly ripped my leg off, but somehow in my panic I managed to fight my way free and get away again.

The humans who were hunting us built a huge fire at their camp, and I knew it was a threat - a threat of what they would do to me if they found me again. It was intended to be a funeral pyre.

Things didn't work out that way, though. The vampires who were chasing me gave up because they were scared of the human group, but I realized there was now a third group of people after me. Great! This was really not how I envisioned life being at age fourteen. I went deeper into the woods, doing my best to hide, but they followed me - and they were the ones who found me.

That is... fortunately they were the ones who found me! Because the third set of pursuers turned out to be the people who would become my family.

I didn't make it easy for them. As a matter of fact, due to how violent and feral I was by that point, I came to my new home heavily sedated and locked in a shipping container, for my own safety and the safety of my fellow passengers.

My new family was patient, though. They rehabilitated me. They taught me self-control. Now I can be around humans without hurting anybody. I don't know how to say it, how to put into words what they did for me, but I can never thank them enough.

Sometimes in my nightmares, I'm out in the woods again. Scared. Running. Hunted.

I hope I'm never out there again. I hope when I'm in the forest, it's camping with my family, not fleeing for my life. My life has changed - I have changed. I have blood on my hands that I can't wash off. But I think I finally belong somewhere again, in spite of my past.


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Werewolf Hunting

Hello everyone. This is Kaya, with an update on our local werewolf situation.

Since she transformed the first two times at the last full moon, Gia's life has been pretty normal, in spite of being bitten and turned into a lycanthrope. The next full moon is Friday. Gia says she can feel it coming - a sort of itchy feeling in her skin, her fingers, and her toes - but it's not time for her to transform again yet, so it's nothing more than a feeling, at least for a few more days. She says she's eating more since she became a werewolf, but she's... um... never exactly been shy about having a healthy appetite (although she still has a slender figure,) so I'm not sure if she's really eating more, or if she's just noticing more because she's a wolf sometimes.

I know Gia still has moments when she feels odd about her situation. Who wouldn't? Our feline shapeshifters have been that way since birth, so they're pretty used to it, but Gia was a regular human (although one who worked for vampires for awhile, admittedly) up until the bite last month, so she's having to adjust to an entirely new self-concept. I think she's doing pretty well, under the circumstances.

Of course, we still have another werewolf-related problem. There's at least one more werewolf running around town, the one that bit Gia. We don't know who it is, and since that night, we haven't heard any more reports of werewolf activity... or "large dog" activity, as Gia originally thought it was.

We felt a little bit bad going to Florida with that unresolved, in case the werewolf attacked someone else... but we can't be everywhere at once. Even if we were on the wrong side of town, or were just inside when the werewolf was outside, we'd be too late to do anything. We would actually have to get incredibly lucky to manage to intervene even if we were in town, so we decided there wasn't much point cancelling our vacation.

While we were gone, there was no full moon - since like I said, the full moon is on Friday. But the night Gia got bitten wasn't a full moon, either. It was nearly a week before the full moon. Obviously the other werewolf can transform at other times, although so far Gia hasn't been able to control her own wolf form. What we're not sure of is whether the other werewolf can control it or it just happens on its own more often, and whether the other werewolf has to change at the full moon like Gia does, or if she or he can decide not to do it. There are a lot of unknowns... and we don't really have a source of accurate information about werewolves.

Somebody has to do something about the situation anyway, though. And since we know about it and we're involved already, it's looking like it'll have to be us. So we, the Greens and Roses, are going werewolf hunting.

Most people who think of werewolf hunting think of silver bullets and wolfsbane, or maybe torches and pitchforks. That isn't our plan, though, because we aren't trying to kill the werewolf. The werewolf may just be a normal person the rest of the time, with no idea what she or he is doing in wolf form. Maybe the werewolf feels terrible about biting Gia - or doesn't even remember doing it. We're certainly not planning for the werewolf to end up dead. We just want to talk to the person, and help them avoid hurting anyone.

We've gone out "hunting" the past couple of evenings. We didn't really expect to find anything - it's not the full moon, and we don't know the werewolf's turning cycle - but we figured we'd better practice a few times before the weekend, so we have our routines down. We've taken turns going out in teams, taking our dog April for werewolf-scenting purposes, and vampires for werewolf-sensing and also because if the werewolf does decide to attack us, a vampire has the best chance of holding her own in the fight. During the day, we've also been asking around about suspicious "dog" activity.

So far, no luck. But we think maybe as the full moon gets closer, our odds will improve. Life is never too normal around here, is it? ;-)


April Fooling

Just in case anyone missed it and is still interested, here's our April Fools joke banner for this year:

If you want to see it bigger, just click on it and it will open in a window. :-)

For last year's, you can click here.

Hope you all had a fun prankster holiday!

"The Blues and The Even Bluer Blues" ;-)