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Aaron watched the pitiful girl before him and could almost watch her wasting away on his couch.  He touched her gingerly and wished he could do something to help, but there was nothing to do but the let things run their course.  He knew what Gabriel had done to her was most likely a death sentence, but there were no options; they could do nothing and hope she might survive -- powerless -- or perhaps the best choice was to show her mercy and end her life.  It was a tough call, and one he was glad he didn't have to make.

That responsibility befell Hunter, who kept his face buried in his hands for a long time; Aaron assumed he wept.

But as he lifted his head and looked up at his friend his eyes were dry, "Aaron, I am going to try something, something foolhardy perhaps, but I think it might be Emily's only chance."

Aaron's interest was piqued, but he said nothing.

"I need to ask you something of great import, Aaron.  Will you help me?"

"You need only ask, my friend."

"I must leave if I am to find help for her, but I dare not bring her with me."

"Oh," was all Aaron could say, looking away from Hunter and resting his gaze upon Emily.  Hunter meant to leave her with him, didn't he?  The heavy burden of responsibility weighed heavily on his heart.

"But what if she should perish in your absence whilst in my care?  I could not bare that grief, Hunter."

"Nor could I," Hunter walked briskly to the front door, his boots thumping crisply on the hardwood floor, "that's why I must act fast, lest my brother's act of cowardice do its intended deed."

Aaron was about to protest more sternly when Hunter put a steadying arm around his head in a brotherly sort of embrace, "Aaron, she is dead if we do nothing, aye?"

Aaron felt miserable but answered true, "Probably."

"Then all we can do is try," Hunter opened the door and stepped out into the blustery night, "just keep her as comfortable as you can.  And Aaron?"

Aaron stepped to the door and squinted into the night, past the twirling leaves and straw, "Yes Hunter?"

"You might need to keep her hidden as well."

Aaron sighed and nodded, "I understand, my brother.  Godspeed."

Hunter turned from his friend and bore his powerful canines.  Under his breath he whispered, "God will have little to do with these affairs, I'm afraid."

The End

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