Hearing howls in the distance brought me to my senses.

"I have to go!" I phased and ran before he could drag me back into conversation. The mental clamour of the pack felt welcoming, Liam and Jason's voices ringing clearly with relief.

I'll explain later.. Thats all I could tell them for now. My mind whirled, turning what had happened over and over. We hadn't ever met, yet a part of me felt as though I had known him for a lifetime. Instictivly, I felt I could trust what he said, though my better judgement roared rejection at the idea of trusting a vampire. Of all creatures.

Reaching the feild we had been fighting in, I helped my pack beat the remaining vampires back. It was a hollow victory. They had lost one, the others (save the one I had encountered) were badly injured. We had lost five, including the cheif's youngest son. In a family that had lost so much already, it was a particularly cruel blow. Back in the village, I hugged their middle son, James, a good friend. His eyes were glazed and his face was colourless. After a few moments, he put his arms around me.

"You know where I am." I said, giving him a sad smile. He nodded.

"Thanks Iva." His voice was tight, the pain of his loss evident in every line of his body. I put my hand on his shoulder breifly and carried on walking through the village, talking briefly with people as I encountered them, spreading the news of the battle.

"IVA!" The shout reverberated off the houses, causing people to stare. With a face like thunder, Liam ran up to me, crushing me in a hug before I got a chance to breathe.

"Don't ever do that to me again." He growled. "Ever. It's not worth it." I hugged him back tightly, feeling the invisible tremors running through his body. The only sign of his fear.

"Liam, let her breathe a minute, yeah?" Jason's calm voice was muffled by my brother's arms, but after a minute, Liam loosened his grip. I flashed Jason a smile in gratitude. As the three of us walked back to the house, the pair of them gave me a lecture on the dangers of vampires. I kept my mouth shut up until the point our front door closed. It was a long walk.

With one foot on the stairway, I turned and faced them.

"Look, I appreicate this, but firstly, I am a fighter. Its my job to fight." I said, looking at Jason first, then my gaze settled on Liam. "And I am good at my job. For your own sakes' please, stop worrying so much. Go to the pub. Enjoy yourselves for a change. I'm going to get some sleep."

Both of them sighed. "Iva.." Liam's protest was cut off by Jason.

"She's right. See you later Iva." With Liam's arm in an iron grip, Jason led him out of the house again.

My relief lasted up until the point I faced my bedroom, after closing the door behind me.

"We never did finish our conversation." The vampire's voice was velvet, filling the room. My whole body went cold.

The End

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