I woke up to find Dad at the foot of my bed.
“Sorry, sugar plum, did I wake you?” he asked.
“No, you didn’t. What’s up?”
Dad sighed. He wasn’t dressed in his ‘home’ clothes which could only mean he was going away again.
“I’m going to be away for a while, hon, I’ve got to go to California for a few months. They think they’ve found a bacteria that can cure cancer but based on the description they gave me it’ll just attack the nervous system instead”.
Now it was my turn to sigh. I stood up and looked in my mirror. It had belonged to my mother before… Before she died. Dad had let me have it since I was only a baby when she died and I can’t really remember anything about her. The frame of the mirror was black metal and a leafy silver vine snaked around it. On each leaf slept a tiny round opal, giving it the appearance of a water droplet. Dad chuckled.
“Whenever you look in that mirror you really look like your mom” he said.
“I miss her too, Dad”.
Dad stood up and gave me a quick hug then dashed off to pack, most likely. I waved him goodbye when he left and found Tawny sat in the kitchen, reading the newspaper and chowing down on a bowl of Count Chocula. How cliché.
“I didn’t know vampires could eat normal food” I said, rooting around the fridge for some jam. Tawny’s spoon clattered onto the table.
“S-sorry? Didn’t quite catch that” she said and I felt her staring at me.
“I said I didn’t know vampires could eat normal food”.
Tawny was silent for a while. Had I gotten it wrong? Were they all Van Helsings and not Draculas?
“How’d you figure it out?” she asked after a few minutes.
“Oh, well, you know. You drink blood and… and you were talking about venom and covering my scent the other day…”
“It was Aya and Morri, wasn’t it?”
“…Yeah. Morrigan just gave me a book and Ayumu told me what page to read from. They never actually told me anything”.
Tawny sighed. It was almost identical to Dad’s. She told me to get dressed and pulled a cell phone out of her pocket. Within a few minutes, there was a knock at the door. Tawny answered it and shouted “Idiots! The both of you!”
Morrigan and Ayumu walked in, looking like children who had just been told off.
“Hey, Sport” Ayumu said.
“Sport? Jeez, it sounds like you’re going to hunt her” Morrigan said from beside him.
A third figure entered the house before Tawny shut the door. Tawny pushed and pulled Morrigan and Ayumu out of the way and I saw the face belonging to the figure. Black hair and different colour eyes. I’d seen that face before. Fletcher.
“Hallie, this is Fang” Tawny said.
Either Tawny was really short or he was really tall because next to him she looked like a dwarf.
“Hello again, Hallie” he said.
I looked at Ayumu. He was busy arm-wrestling Morrigan. And she was winning.
“I’m sorry for lying to you the other day. I figure now is the time to tell you everything you need to know” Fang said, beckoning me to sit.
So I did. He stayed standing but Tawny came and sat next to me on the stairs.
“There are five of us and yes, we are all vampires. You’ll meet Lilith eventually, then you’ll have met the whole family. Now, we’re not the only vampires in Apollo’s Arrow. In fact, this town is a vampire hotspot. The five of us are protecting you from four other vampires who would do you harm”.
“Why me?” I asked quietly.
“If you were turned you would make a most powerful vampire. For some reason, this is affecting me. It isn’t affecting Tawny or the others, only me. The head of the vampires we’re protecting you from has decided that he should be the one that creates the supervampire you would become”.
“So, I’m basically a living weapon. The top weapon in an arms race”.
“Yes, except we intend to keep you human. It should be up to the human whether they wish to be a vampire, though why anyone would wish it upon themselves I’m not sure”.
It was all a little much to take in. There were four vampires out to get me, another five protecting me and my entire town was a vampire hangout. What Fletcher… No, what Fang just said didn’t explain why he was hitting on me the other day. And weren’t vampires supposed to incinerate in the sun? Ayumu was topless in it yesterday and he didn’t burn to a crisp. Neither did Morrigan. My thoughts must have been echoed across my face as Fang sat down and began to talk again.
“We can go out in sunlight just as humans do. Sunlight killing a vampire is just a legend. Most vampires choose not to be around humans during the day so they don’t risk bringing bloodlust upon themselves. Although, there are a select few who have… difficulties with the sun. Tawny’s one of those few”.
“We think I may have been an albino when I was a human. It’s possible my body and brain could have mutated as a result of the venom in my system but it’s not likely. As a result I have hyper photophobia. Neat, huh?” Tawny said giving me an encouraging hug.
Morrigan slammed Ayumu’s arm into the table. Ayumu stood up, taking Morrigan with him, and leant his face into hers.
“You may have beaten me this time but now it’s on. I wont lose to you again, Morrigan Ashley Gray” he said menacingly and stalked off.
I say stalked off, I mean towards me. He ruffled my hair and Fang sort of growled at him. Tawny even stood up. But this time she wasn’t protecting me. She was helping Fang. Morrigan rushed to Ayumu’s side and bared her huge canines. Ayumu looked at Fang, then at Tawny and took his hand off my head. Tawny glared at him and slipped off into the kitchen.
“Sorry” Ayumu said quite arrogantly and sat on the stairs.
Morrigan smiled at me before following Tawny into the kitchen. Fang sighed and apologised quickly to Ayumu.
“Why were you hitting on me the other day?” I asked.
Now it was Ayumu’s turn to growl. He tore off the step he was sat on and stood in front of Fang. Fang really was a giant. He was taller than Ayumu and he must have been a good 6”5.
“You said it was just a protection mission. Special orders from The Union” Ayumu growled.
“I never said The Union ordered it. And it is just a protection mission. I was hitting on her to see if she would be a liability. Hallie, you’re a little too trusting of everybody”.
“That is true. Didn’t even question Tawny once when she got ‘kidnapped’” Ayumu said.
“Wait, say what? I’m a liability?” I asked.
“You trust people too easily. What would have happened if it wasn’t me you met that night?” Fang said, trying ever so hard not to raise his voice.
I didn’t reply. Trusting people is in my nature. I’ve pretty much lived on my own since I was eight years old so I trust people easily. And I just don’t think it’s right to be horrible to people. I guess you could say I’m a bit of a pushover. But this guy, Fang. I don’t think I’ll have any problems being horrible to him.