A few hours later I was behind the wheel of a busted up Camry, the small amount of belongings I had in the backseat and all of my new documentation ready to go. It was about time to leave town and head a couple states down.
I had considered leaving the U.S. altogether but the sheer population made it almost too easy to blend in. Many other countries had less people and better security. America made it simple; look the part and nobody raised an eyebrow.
Part of me had no idea how teenage girls could stand to dress in such clothing; it was uncomfortable, unimpressive, and half of the male population openly ogled at my butt when they thought I wasn't able to notice. But then again it was a small sacrifice to keep my head down, and every century had its few generations of surprisingly stupid children.
Twenty, thirty years and the fad would blow over no doubt.
Hopefully I would survive until then. In both the literal and metaphorical sense.
I drummed my fingers on the steering wheel, making a face before turning the radio on.
The bad pop songs did nothing to console me from the sight of myself in the rear-view mirror. Layered black hair falling just to my shoulders with even more black rimming my now-grey eyes.
A haircut and dye job, not to mention ditching the blue lenses, had suddenly made me another person. Add to that a pair of whitewashed jeans and a conservative grey cardigan and the difference was even more drastic.
Now I had made the full transition from Kara Hines to Bridget Smith. I'd had so many different identities that I couldn't even remember half of them, honestly.
My gaze drifted back to the rainy world outside the windshield only for panic to seize hold of me. Time seemed to freeze.
There was a dark figure standing on the road barely ten yards from my speeding wreck of a car. I didn't really care about making road pizza out of them, but any kind of investigation would be the end of me.
The centuries that made up my life flashed before my eyes and before I realized what I was doing I had launched myself forwards, crashing through the windshield with my arms crossed over my face and jumped down from the hood of the car, turning within a split-second to stop the vehicle with my shoulder, gritting my teeth as I was pushed forwards with it.
It finally screeched to a halt, an inch from the almost-roadkill.
My hands and shoulder were a bloody mess, but it didn't hurt all too much. The incident had, however, ruined my clothes.
I turned on the idiot that caused it and scowled as menacingly as I could.
"What the hell was that? You almost got yourself-I mean, the both of us killed! You suicidal and homicidal or something?!"
That was my best attempt at a normal reaction. After years of being in practically every situation possible, it was kind of hard to judge what a 'regular' person would say.
Not that the dude I was facing looked regular either, what with a black jacket and black pants and black shoes and black gloves and a black hood that covered his (probably a 'he' judging by his height and shape) face.
I wondered briefly if I'd found some kind of psychopathic nut who wanted to eat my brains and my hands instantly went behind me, pulling out a pistol from my waistband.
Being on a road in the middle of nowhere meant no witnesses for my heroics, but it also left me exposed to this weirdo. I could 'get rid' of him with no real effort, but even getting a scratch on him could get me in trouble.
"We both know you can't die, Kara. Or is it Bridget now?"
I started at the sound of his voice, namely how unassuming it sounded. Was this some kind of stalker who'd managed to see me walk out of that collapsed building unscathed? I was sure I'd waited until everyone had left until climbing out of the rubble...
"What are you talking about?" I demanded, trying to sound normal again.
He raised a gloved hand and flicked one of his fingers, making the gun fly out of my hand and skitter across the street, my wrist throbbing. Broken.
My lips curled into a snarl and I felt my spine tingling, the scarred skin threatening to split from instinct. Heal me, my body seemed to be crying out, find a host There and feed!
I'd already found a host Here.
The arm which was intact pulled a hunting knife from my boot, lunging with it as the hooded character dodged each blow.
The blade caught him on the arm suddenly, cutting through the fabric and hitting flesh.
I used the moment to dig my nails into the wound, feeling power surge into my veins and my limp hand snap back into place.
My mind was spurring me on to drain all of the life-force out of this creature but, realizing suddenly that I was being allowed to feed, and that the power had a much-too-familiar taste, pulled back, stumbling a bit in my retreat.
"You...you're supposed to be dead."