It was dark again when I woke up. I sat up slowly, my arms aching from the previous night. I looked around. I wasn’t in my own room. I was lying in a double bed. I swung my legs round and got up. I walked out the door and down the stairs.
Faron was asleep on one of the sofas. I went and knelt by him. He was facing away from me. I gently touched his shoulder. He rolled over and stirred in his sleep. I shook his arm softly. He stretched and opened his eyes a bit.
“Evening,” he murmured.
“You alright?” I asked.
“I’m fine,” he said, sitting up. “You needed to rest so I came down here. The question is, are you alright?”
“I’m as okay as I can be under the circumstances. Fai likes you, you know? She was probably trying to make you jealous.”
“Well it didn’t work. It’s not her I love.”
I put a hand on his knee and sat next to him. I rested my head on his shoulder.
“You’re probably better for me than Phoenix ever was or could be.”
He held my chin with his hand and kissed me softly. I placed a hand on his chest and moved into him. He pulled away and smiled.
“It’s full moon,” he said.
“We should go and wake everyone up.”
“Probably. I’ll go and wake up Cordelia.”
I stood and walked up the stairs. I opened the door of my room to see Cordelia still asleep in her bed, in the arms of Bladen. I smiled to myself and woke them up. Bladen hurried out the room, smiling at Cordelia. I went to the wardrobe and got out some new clothes.
“What did I miss last night?” I asked teasingly.
“Nothing like that,” Cordy said, grinning. “That’d just be disturbing anyway.”
“He’s my brother.”
“Really? Blood-brother or brother?”
“Actual brother, yes.”
“I didn’t know that,” I said.
Clattering footsteps ran down the stairs. Howls came from downstairs. I clearly looked worried.
“Don’t worry, that’s the boys. They’re at it again. They do that every month,” said Cordy.
“Just a bit.”
Suddenly the howling stopped and the whole mansion went quiet, except for the ringing of the bell on the gate, the bell that never rang. I looked at Cordy and we both ran out of the room and down the stairs. I hurried to the array of monitors that showed the security cameras. I flicked over to the camera at the gate.
“Oh, my God,” I whispered.
At the gate stood my old family. Nate and Ben had a triumphant look on their faces. I ran out of the house and to the gate. I stopped a little way away, in the dark, just watching them. Mum and Dad were looking at the house with an expression of astonishment. I walked to the gate.
“What are you doing here?” I hissed.
“We’ve come to take you home,” said Mum sternly.
“I am home.”
“You may be seventeen but in the eyes of the law you are still a minor which means that we are still responsible for you,” Dad said strictly.
“I think you’ll find that’s my job now,” said Faron from behind me. I hadn’t even heard him approach.
“She’s seventeen, this is kidnapping,” pressed Dad.
“It’s not kidnapping if I want to be here,” I said.
“Sir, I assure you–” Faron started.
“I’ll deal with this, Faron. You just go and get everyone ready.”
Faron turned around and walked away, anxious to leave for the night. Mum looked at me warily.
“Ready for what?” she asked.
“None of your business.”
I grabbed the horizontal bars and flipped over the gate. They looked shocked but didn’t say anything.
“I’d be very grateful if you left now and never came back,” I said.
Dad slapped me so I punched him back. He fell on his back, looking stunned.
“Vanessa!” Mum exclaimed.
“My name’s Vein.”
“I demand you apologise to your father right away!”
“I demand you to leave.”
I turned away from her, ignoring her shocked expression that largely resembled a fish. Nate and Ben’s triumphant appearances vanished.
“Why are you here?” I asked coldly.
“We’ve come to get you,” said Nate quietly.
“Don’t make me do something I might regret. I was recently abducted, cheated on and I’m thirsty. Leave. Now. We have some business to attend to.”
“Vein!” Bladen shouted from the house.
I looked at him and caught the gun he threw me. I went to put it in the harness around my shoulders when I realised I didn’t have it. I slid it into the back of my shorts. I heard howling that wasn’t coming from the mansion. It was fairly far away but it was the real werewolves.
The gates opened and 37 vampires walked towards us. Cordelia threw me a coat and harness. As I was pulling them on, I turned to Mum and Dad.
“We’re leaving, it’s time you four did the same,” I said.
“No. No, we’re going with you.”
I glanced at Faron then glared at my parents.
“Take them inside and lock them somewhere. I’ll deal with them later,” I said.
Spike, Cordelia, Matt and Raven grabbed their arms. They all fought back.
“Go with them or this gets violent,” I hissed.
My old family stopped struggling and let themselves be dragged inside.