Forty NineMature

Sophie stopped suddenly when she saw me. Next to her stood a man that looked a few years older than her, though age didn't matter to most vampires. On her other side was a mountain lion, a female. Zoe noticed Sophie and cast her gaze between the two of us repeatedly. Sophie looked down at the floor for a moment before walking slowly towards me.

"Hi," she breathed.

"This can't be real," I muttered.

"Ace, it-"

"You died. It's impossible."

"I didn't die, Ace."

"But... how? I went to your funeral."

"I faked it. I faked my death. I... I'm sorry." Tears started to form in her eyes.

"Why did you do it, Sophie?" I asked quietly. "I was struggling while you were there with me, and when you were gone, things just got worse."

"I had to get away from it all. I just couldn't deal with it anymore. I couldn't deal with Dad; I couldn't deal with what he was doing to me..." She took a deep breath. "Do you remember how, when I was crying after... After Dad took me away, you'd sit next to me, and you'd hug me, and you'd say that you just wished I could be happy? Do you remember? Well, I am happy now."

"I didn't mean by pretending to commit suicide!"

"Nobody stays dead for long," she whispered.

"Mum said that to me at your funeral."

"Grandma used to say it after Grandad died. But, Ace, I've always looked after you, watched over you, made sure you were okay. Do you remember Ibiza?"

"It wasn't really a time I could ever forget," I winced, remembering yet again what I'd done to my best friends.

"The vampire that attacked you was a rogue. She'd fallen to the sickness and became insane. All she did was hurt you a lot. I didn't want to see you in pain, let alone dead, so I..." she trailed, hoping I'd understand what she meant.

"You did this to me?"

She nodded, tears dripping down her face. She reached her hand out to touch my cheek. I stepped forward to hug her, wrapping my arms around her tiny waist. She was still exactly the same, not that I expected any different. Then again, I'd never expected to see my only sister again.

"Do you know how Alistair is?" she asked.

I released her and stepped back. She watched me worriedly while I thought of how to tell her.

"Alistair's dead. As in, actually dead," I said quietly.

"What?"

"He was murdered. Dad emailed me."

"When was this?"

"Twelve years ago."

"What about Mum? Is she still alive?"

"She divorced Dad not long after Darran, Riley and I ran away. She's still alive as far as I know and Dad thinks it's his fault we're all gone."

"It is his fault."

We stood in silence for a little while.

"Ace," said Sophie, gesturing to the man next to her, "this is Daniel."

"This is Zoe. Zoe, this is my sister, who was apparently dead."

"Hello," said Zoe quietly.

"Hi," Sophie smiled.

The End

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