“Okay, so now I’m well-informed about the creation of vampires,” I choked out. One line was going through my head repeatedly. Leaving a bitten human alive is against Eternal Law. “Your government doesn’t ‘’condone murder of part of one of heir own immortal species’’, but it declares that humans have to be killed for vampires to feed?”
“I’m sorry if you’re angry about that, but there’s nothing we can do,” Meena said. “Vampires need the blood to survive, and only stray vampires who don’t register themselves with the Eternals actually kill people, and even then it‘s usually down-and-outs who won‘t be missed. If a vampire is thirsty, they visit a hospital.”
“So they can feed off dying people?” I asked angrily.
“No,” she said, taken aback, “The Eternals plant others, shape shifters usually, as workers. They can use syringes to withdraw safe amounts of fresh human blood from the patients. It has to be fresh, because if it isn’t just taken from the body then the magic in it will have dispersed.”
“What?” I said, my face surely a mask of confusion. I was lost all over again. These waters were too deep for me to swim in. I could barely keep my head above the surface. I was reminded of my dream, and I caught myself thinking of Phoenix as Meena carried on talking. I wondered why none of our throats were hoarse with all this talking, but I knew it was necessary for me to understand.
“The vampire condition is not what you think it is. A vampire is a being whose heart needs magical blood to keep it beating - effectively, they are dead because their hearts have stopped, but it‘s the blood that revives them. It feeds on the blood in the body, and they need to take blood from others regularly to stop their own from running out.”
I suddenly remembered the point of our conversation. I had been so sidetracked by the talk of vampires that I had completely forgotten.
“Okay, I get all of that now. So, back to Tenebrus.”
They looked at me, Willow especially staring, as though prompting something she thought was obvious. I skimmed through the conversation and the information in the books I had read, and suddenly something clicked. I put it all together and what I came up with was not good. For me.
“Okay, so you’re saying that if he finds out about me, Tenebrus will come and find me and bite me to turn me into one of them…”
“Bloodwolves,” Meena supplied helpfully.
“…because my magic will be the most powerful for thirteen days, and he can control me!”
“That’s pretty much what we think will happen, yeah,” Willow confirmed, but she didn’t look worried. “So that’s why we’re here.”
She spread her hands, looking relieved as though a burden had been lifted off her shoulders. I, however, felt the weight of the Tenebrus threat on mine. Just great.
After a few minutes silence, during which I stared broodingly at the ground and felt their eyes on me, the bell rang again. It was one hour until the end of school.
After this illuminating discussion I didn’t much feel like sitting in a chemistry lab with the thoughts buzzing round my head. It was already hurting from the sudden load of realisations and knowledge. I rubbed absently at my aching temple and got up as the last echoes of the bell faded.