White Light of EvilMature

Chapter One

Nydia shivered and rubbed her arms as she walked down the street towards her house. It was late, just past three in the morning. She had been at a rave all night. Quickly, she turned down a street. Just a few more blocks to go, she reminded herself. Knowing she'd be drinking, she had decided not to take the car. What seemed like a short walk while sober, though, now seemed like a long journey while intoxicated.

A black Corvette pulled up beside her. The driver rolled down the window. He watched her turn away, sensing something was wrong.

"Need a ride?" he asked.

"No thanks," she called back, walking faster. He noticed her stumbling in her knee-high black boots. She's drunk, he realized. He stepped out of the car and jogged up to her.

"Where do you live?"

"I don't need a ride," she said as she continued walking. He grabbed her bare arm and she pulled away.

"You must be cold, you're barely wearing anything." She was wearing a black skirt, a tank top, and her hair was dyed dark red, almost a deep burgundy.

"I'm almost home," she lied, looking at him. Blue eyes. Damn. She wasn't what he had hoped she was. But at that moment she realized what he was. His eyes were dead black.

Within seconds, Nydia had pulled the knife from the sheath strapped around her ankle. Sober or not, she could still sense the difference between a vampire and a human; her instinct to fight had not been incapacitated.

She was fast, but the alcohol slowed her down. This vampire's reflexes were now quicker than hers. He grabbed her arm and knocked the knife away.

"So, you're a witch," the vampire mused. "'To slip up is to die'? Is that the rule?"

She backed away, not able to fight without a weapon. She had neither the skill nor the strength. Few witches fought a vampire unarmed and lived.

The vampire watched as she cautiously backed away. He grinned. As inebriated as she was, there would be no possible way she could keep him out of her mind. He reached out with his mind and slowly crept into hers.

Come with me.

"No," she whispered.

Come.

 

Chapter Two

Nydia sat up and looked around. She was in the back of a black Corvette. Every muscle in her body ached, and her head was pounding. There was blood on the seat, and she instinctively reached up to her neck. He hadn't bitten her. She glanced at her watch. It was 9am. The sun was up, and it hurt her eyes. Chances are, the vampire was long gone by now. She reached for the door handle. It was unlocked, and she stepped outside, wincing as pain shot through her back.

I must have put up one hell of a fight.

She looked around.

"Shit," she whispered. She was in the desert. She walked around to the driver's side of the car and looked in. The keys were still there. She opened the door and got in, carefully turning the key. Nothing. She tried again. Nothing. One more time. Still, nothing. She glanced at the gas gauge. Empty. "Dammit!"

There wasn't much she could do now, but start walking and hope for the best.

 

Chapter Three

The truck came to a stop and the driver got out.

"Miss? Miss? Are you alright?" he asked, running up to Nydia, who was now laying on the side of the highway. She closed her eyes.

"I'm-I'm okay."

"We're gonna get you to a hospital, Miss," the man said, helping her up.

He led her over to the passenger's side of the truck and helped her in. Then he ran around to the driver's side.

"We'll get you cleaned up," he said as they drove away. As she scraped the dry blood off her arm, he turned and looked at her. "What happened?"

"Went for a walk."

"Looks like you've been walking in the desert for a few weeks," he said, sarcastically, glancing back at the road.

She shook her head. "Four days."

"Oh my God," he said quietly.

"Where are we?"

"Just outside Deep Springs," he replied. "California. Where are you from?"

"Reno, Nevada," she signed. They were coming up to a few buildings on the edge of the town.

"That there is the hospital," he pointed out. "You have to see a doctor."

Nydia nodded.

 

Chapter Four

She didn't have to wait in the waiting room, a doctor saw her right way. The guy that had picked her up-Fred, she thought, or maybe it was Frank-had offered to stay with her but she had thanked him and told him she'd be fine. Now, she was sitting in an examining room, talking to a doctor. She had told the doctor what happened, minus the part about being a witch and him a vampire. The doctor had ordered a rape kit.

"Well, Nydia, it seems you're pregnant," the doctor said slowly.

"Jesus Christ," Nydia whispered.

"Can I ask how old you are?"

"I'm nineteen."

"And do you know what you'd like to do?" he asked.

"Yeah. Thanks." She got up to leave.

"Would you like to talk to someone?"

"No, I'm fine," Nydia said.

"Are you going to have the baby?" the doctor asked, concerned.

"Yes."

She had to have it. The first child of a witch was always the strongest, no matter who the father. After this one, she could have others, but the next would not be nearly as strong. Witches died young; by the time they reached middle age they were slow and slip-ups were inevitable. Once Nydia was gone, the strongest child would take care of and train the others. She could not risk having a weak first child, it was dangerous. The vampire blood will only make my baby stronger, she convinced herself. I will raise it as a pure witch.

"-and if you need to talk to someone, you can call this number-"

What? Had the doctor been talking? She nodded vacantly and took the paper he offered. Then she left.

It took her less than a day to hitchhike back to Reno.

 

Chapter Five

There has always been good and bad. Right and wrong. Witches and vampires.

I was, however, neither, and at the same time I was both. My mother was a witch, my father a vampire. He was never a part of my life; my mother raised me alone. I wasn't even sure what the story between them was. My mother never spoke of him. Once, she told me he was a powerful vampire from South Western USA that she had met one night at a club. That was all I knew. She refused to speak any more about it than that.

"Rayne!" Jacy shouted. I looked up as a dagger flew in my direction. I caught it, inches away from my face.

"I'm done for today, Jacy. We'll practice again tomorrow, I promise," I yawned. "It's late."

"One more round," she begged. I nodded. She jumped at me and I dodged her knife, while slicing her leg open with mine. She let out a cry and backed up. The wound would heal in a few days but it would still scar.

"Never, ever back off, Jacy. No matter how much it hurts. If you drop your guard even the slightest bit, you're dead," I explained. Then, in one quick movement, I grabbed her and put my knife to her neck. She sighed.

"I know, I've still got a lot to learn," she said, sadly.

"And you'll learn, kid. You're only sixteen, don't forget. I've got two years on you, and I'm first born."

"You're part vampiress. You've got physical strength," she turned away. "Stronger than any vampire, smarter than any witch."

It hurt my family to know that I was half vampiress. They spent their whole lives hunting them and yet here I was, part of that evil? I was lucky my mother had fought so hard not to let them disown me.

"Mom and I will train with you everyday. You will get stronger."

Jacy nodded and stepped towards me again. I grabbed her and slid my knife slowly into her neck, watching the blood dribble out.

"What are you doing?" she asked, grabbing her neck. My eyes were fixed on the blood. Such a deep, dark red, it was. I let her go and wiped the blood off my knife.

"Hey, you! Get to bed!" Aiken smiled from the doorway.

"Dad!" Jacy giggled. "I was just finishing up with Rayne."

"Well Rayne has to go to bed too," Nydia laughed, joining Aiken in the doorway.

"I'm going," I smiled. "Night Mom, night Aiken."

Jacy turned to me. "We better practice again tomorrow, Sis, except I'll win this time!"

"You just keep telling yourself that," I grinned. "Night kid."

Jacy walked out the door and went to her room. Aiken put his arm around Nydia's waist and she told him she'd join him in a minute. As he left the room, Nydia turned to me.

"You're doing a great job training your sister, Rayne. I'm glad to know I can count on you if ever I'm not here."

"Which is not going to happen, Mom," I replied. She smiled and nodded.

"You get some rest, okay."

"Sure," I said, yawning again. She turned to walk away. "Mom?"

"Yeah?"

"You ever gonna talk about him?"

"Get some sleep, you've got a busy day tomorrow, training with Jacy."

"Okay."

She walked out of the room.

I sat down on the mat and did stretches for an hour before I finally went to bed so I wouldn't be stiff and sore in the morning.

I walked upstairs to the bathroom and let my long black hair down. I was the only one in my family with such a color. Jacy had strawberry blonde hair and blue eyes. My mother had blonde hair also, that she often dyed burgundy. I always assumed I got the black hair from my father. Must have gotten the black eyes from him, too. I didn't look like a hunter. Many witches mistook me for a vampiress, and I was always getting myself into awkward situations with them. One time I had been hunting a vampiress named Adora at a club in Phoenix, when I had run into two other hunters. Thinking I was one of Adora's fledglings, I had my throat cut with a silver knife. Since I was half vampiress, it hurt like hell, but it wasn't fatal because I was half witch. Still, I had a nasty scar now.

I put my hairbrush away and walked down the hall.

"She doesn't know about him and I want it kept that way," I overheard Nydia explain. The door to their bedroom was open only a crack but I could still make out the words.

"You can't hunt him without her, you must tell her. He made her stronger, she can fight him."

"No, Aiken. I'll do this on my own. You know what he did to me; I'll go to Reno and deal with it."

The light in the room went out and they were both silent. I stood there, trying to make sense of what I had just heard.

"Elias will come back," Aiken whispered. "If he knows you're after him, he'll get you first."

"I said I'd deal with it. Goodnight."

Elias?

What the hell? Elias was the oldest and strongest vampire still alive, if you could call it that.

If he's my father, I have to know.

I wrote my mother a quick note saying I had to go train with a friend and that I'd be back in a few days.

 

Chapter Six

A car passed by and slowed to a stop. I jogged up to it and the driver rolled down the window.

"Where are you going?" the guy asked.

"Reno," I smiled.

"That's where I'm headed too, hop in."

I went around the car and got into the passenger seat.

"Whatcha going there for?" he asked.

"Friends," I shrugged. "Get away for a while."

It wasn't completely untrue, I did know quite a few witches there. But I didn't know the actual reason I was going. I wasn't sure what I was looking for. I guess I just really wanted to find out if Elias of Cerelia was my father, and have all of my questions answered.

"-from here?"

"What?" I asked, dragging my thoughts back to reality.

"I said are you from here? Las Vegas?"

"Yeah," I nodded. "Are you?"

"I'm from Reno. Just goin' home."

"Oh."

"Name's Derek," he smiled, making conversation.

"Rayne." He looked at me, noticing my eyes, for the first time. I noticed his hands shaking as he gripped the steering wheel.

"Something wrong?" I asked.

"No."

I accepted the answer until he slowly pulled the car over to the shoulder of the road.

"What are you doing?" I sighed. I didn't feel like dealing with anything serious right now, but Derek already had the knife in his hand. I put my arm up to block his first blow, and then reached to grab him but he squirmed out of my reach.

"You're a vampiress!" he yelled, shaking furiously.

I laughed. "And you are...?"

"A witch," he said softly, keeping his eyes focused on me.

"You haven't been hunting for very long, have you," I grinned.

He shook his head.

"I'm a witch too. Rayne Talvi, daughter of Nydia Talvi," I explained, but he didn't look convinced.

"Derek Blaise, son of Eeva Blaise."

I knew it. The weakest line of witches.

"I-I don't trust you," he stuttered.

"Then get out."

"What?" he asked, shocked.

"Get out of the damn car."

"But-"

"Now, bitch!" I snapped. He obeyed, and I laughed at how easy that had been. I'd turn his car in later, but for now I couldn't have him jumpy like that throughout the three-hour drive, it could get us into an accident.

 

Chapter Seven

"Akilah?" I smiled. Akilah turned around.

"Rayne! What are you doing here?"

"Looking for something, actually," I said, looking around. "You've done a nice job with this place."

"Thanks," she nodded. "Can I help you with anything?"

"Elias," I explained, "is the only vampire left of the Cerelia Line. I'd like to find him. My sources told me he was here years ago. Know where I could find him now?"

"I'm not sure, Rayne. I haven't heard about him in a long time. I didn't even know he was the last of his line, but I would think he was dead."

"Oh, okay. Well thanks, Akilah. Hey, do me a favor? If my mom asks, don't tell her who I'm looking for. She doesn't like me hunting Elias, him being so strong and all."

"No prob, girl. Since you're here, feel like coming to a match tomorrow morning?" Akilah asked. "You could spend the night here."

"Sure," I nodded.

 

Chapter Eight

"Akilah, you're up next," the announcer said. We were in the basement of an old building. There must have been at least forty witches there; some I recognized and some I didn't. Akilah stepped in front of a younger looking witch. The announcer nodded and they went at it. Akilah received the first blow to her shoulder, and raised her knife in defense. She dodged the second blow and slid her blade across the other hunter's stomach, who hissed in pain. Then she managed to fake a move to the left and caught her opponent's arm as the witch reached out to cut her.

"Bad move," Akilah breathed softly. She twisted the witch's arm and sent her flying. The witch hit the ground hard, getting the air knocked out of her. She did not get back on her feet.

"And Akilah is, yet again, the winner!" the announcer shouted as everyone clapped.

"Not bad," I nodded, walking up to Akilah.

"Think you could beat me?" she grinned.

One thing about me was I'd never refuse a challenge. I was a very competitive person. I would do and have done just about anything to prove someone wrong, or to prove that I was stronger than them. But this competitiveness was sometimes my biggest weakness.

"Bring it on." I stepped up to Akilah, looking into her eyes.

"What's your weapon?" she asked.

"You pick," I said, since I was skilled in everything.

She nodded and tossed me a saber from the table. "Ready?"

Before I could reply, she had already attacked. The long blade met the soft skin of my cheek, tearing it open.

"Well that was low," I mumbled. She laughed and struck again, cutting open the flesh of my ankle.

"You can do better than that. You're half leech," she sneered. "Your mom should have disowned you."

I was shocked, but angry more than anything. So that's why Akilah, old friend of my mother's, had never kept in touch. She couldn't accept the fact that I was not pure witch.

I felt the cold blade hit the flesh of my lower back. Had I just been standing there?

"At least try," she laughed.

"I don't need to." I grabbed the long blade of her saber with my hand and held it as she tried to pull away. Dropping my own weapon to my feet, I began to pull hers out of her hand.

I'm no leech,

I told her with my mind, and she looked away, hissing. The instant she let go of the saber, I threw her to the ground and held it to her throat.

"Where is he?" I demanded.

"Who?"

"Elias. You hunted his line, you should know," I whispered. Every other witch in the room was looking at us but they knew better than to interfere.

"Check with Vecepia, she's his little playmate," Akilah growled, feeling the blade cut her skin.

I got up, licked the blood off my blade, and grinned.

 

Chapter Nine

After hitchhiking all the way back from Reno, Nydia didn't even ask where I had been. As far as she was concerned, what I did was my business and mine alone. She did, however, chastise me for telling Jacy I'd train with her and then just leaving like that.

"-and a witch's word should never be broken, because sometimes that's all we've got left when everything else is gone."

She had been babbling on for nearly twenty minutes, when Jacy walked into the room.

"Brett called," she announced. "Said it was important."

"Thanks," I said, leaving the room. Brett was one of my best friends, and I had known him since I was about four years old. We grew up together. I walked upstairs to my room and grabbed the phone. Then I looked out the window. It was eight, and it would be dark soon, I realized. Mom had said she was going to bed soon, they wouldn't know that I was gone if I stepped out for a few minutes.

I put the phone down quietly slipped out my window and jumped to the ground, looking around. I knew exactly where to go.

 

Chapter Ten

It was nine o'clock and I sat on the roof of a building in downtown Las Vegas, about five minutes from my house, watching three vampires as they found their prey and lured her to a dark alley behind a bar. I watched longingly as they joked around and laughed.

I wish I had friends like that. I had very few friends, other than Brett, because I never really fit in with the witches. They were always talking about how I was a vampiress, also. I often wondered what it would have been like to have been raised as a vampiress rather than a witch. I never wanted to be popular, but I did want friends. If I hadn't been stuck in the middle like this, maybe things would have been easier for me. The vampires had many friends, nice cars, money, and freedom. Witches had to hunt. All I had was Brett.

Oh no, I forgot to call Brett!

I looked down at the others and sighed. They were probably going to hit some rave now. I grabbed the cell phone out of my bag and dialed Brett's number, wondering what he had wanted earlier.

"Hello?" a voice answered.

"Hey," I said, quietly. "What's so important?"

"Rayne! That movie you wanted to see comes out tonight," he laughed. "When should I pick you up?"

"How about now?" I asked. "I have to talk to you anyway."

"Okay, I'll be there in ten."

He hung up the phone and I raced home to get ready. I changed into a burgundy tank top and black pants. I covered up the cuts on my ankle and back easily, but the ones on my cheek and hand were visible. I picked at the scab with my fingernail until it started to bleed, and I shrugged. Who cares what people think?

Exactly ten minutes later, Brett showed up at my door. I said bye to Jacy, who was watching TV in the living room, and told her that I'd be back later. Then Brett and I left the house.

"So what did you want to talk about?" Brett asked.

We were driving around in his silver Bugatti EB110, listening to Soil on his cheap $1800 sound system.

"I think Elias of the Cerelia Line is my father."

"Oh my God! Rayne!"

"Will you help me find him?" I asked.

"I don't think you should. He's really powerful and-"

"Please?" I begged. He nodded and squeezed my hand. I smiled. "Now, let's go see that movie."

 

Chapter Eleven

"What are you doing here?" Nydia asked. "Aiken! Jacy!"

Elias put a hand over her mouth.

"They're already dead," he whispered. Nydia glanced over to the living room where she could see her husband's blood covered body sprawled out on the floor. Beside him, Jacy's body was doubled over, leaning against the wall, her face still frozen in fear. It was clear that she had been stabbed in the heart.

"Why are you doing this?" Nydia sobbed. "Leave my family alone."

"Why doesn't your family leave me alone? Rayne was seen in Reno, looking for me. I don't appreciate being hunted."

Nydia tried desperately to reach the concealed knife at her back. She opened her mouth to speak but Elias gripped her head with both hands. He was so close she could feel his cold breath on her cheek. "Die," he whispered and swiftly snapped her neck.

 

Chapter Twelve

"Okay, I agree, it was a good movie," Brett laughed. "Sappy, but good, okay?"

"Yeah," I smiled. We walked up to the door of my house and he grabbed my arm to pull me back. I looked at him. "Want to come in? They're probably sleeping."

He nodded. I unlocked the door and stepped inside. The lights were off and the place was quiet. We kicked off our shoes and went into the living room. He grabbed me and pulled me to the couch. Before he could say anything, I kissed him long and hard.

"I've been waiting for that," he laughed. Ever since we were little, he had had a thing for me. I was just always too busy to realize it. He was a witch also, but not first born, so I had much more work and responsibility.

We laid back on the couch and I began to kiss him again, but something caught my eye. It was Aiken's foot.

"Aiken?" I screamed, jumping off of Brett. Brett flicked the lights on.

"Oh God, Rayne..."

I knelt by Aiken and then noticed what Brett was looking at. Jacy was propped up against the wall. "Jacy!" I sobbed. "Oh my God, Jacy!"

Brett held me as my knees collapsed and I fell to the ground, sobbing.

"They're both dead," I cried. Then I stood up. "Mom? Mom!?"

Brett and I ran into the next room. There, we found my mom dead. I turned to Brett and held onto him, screaming.

"It was Elias! I'm going to kill him!"

"You don't know it was him," Brett whispered, still holding me.

"It had to be him!"

We sat right there on the floor crying for an hour. Once the tears had stopped coming, I stood up.

"Rayne?"

"Get in the car," I ordered.

"Rayne, no-" he protested.

"Get into the car, Brett, I'm not kidding."

I grabbed my knife and an overnight bag. Then we walked out of the house. I had been taught to handle things without emotion. Witches always died at young ages, it was never surprising. I knew my mother would go soon. Aiken and Jacy just happened to go then too. I couldn't bring them back, but I could get revenge.

"There's a house a little ways out of town. We're going there," I explained.

Brett nodded silently.

 

Chapter Thirteen

Neither of us talked the whole way there, and although it felt like a three hour long drive, we were there within half an hour; Brett had been going a dangerous 190km/h.

"Let's go," I said once we got there. "Just follow my lead."

I walked into the house and looking around, instantly recognizing some of the weaker vampires of the Makara Line. I looked back at Brett. His gaze was fixed on Vecepia, the oldest one in the room and probably the strongest, since the others were almost as weak as humans were. Within seconds, his knife was at her throat. The other vampires turned to her, shocked. Before any of them could react, I began to speak.

"Nice little party you've got going here," I said slowly, walking up to Vecepia. The vampiress hissed, but stopped when I put my knife over her heart. "We'd like to know where Elias is."

"We don't know where he is," a younger vampire hissed. Without hesitation, I turned to him and put my silver knife through his heart and twisted it sideways. He fell back against the wall and slid to the floor, his hands reaching up to the fatal wound. The rest of the vampires backed away.

"You aren't strong enough to fight me. I could take you all on at the same time and still win. Now tell me, where is Elias?" I yelled.

"Phoenix. He's in Phoenix," Vecepia whispered, lowering her head. I smiled and turned to walk out the door.

"Thanks," Brett smiled as he slid his knife into Vecepia's throat. She backed up, gasping for air, as she reached for her neck. Although she was weak, it was not fatal. Brett and I got back into the car.

"Now what?" he asked, starting the car.

"Road trip."

 

Chapter Fourteen

We were in Phoenix. I don't know how long it took us to get there, or what I was planning to do once I got there; I was in a daze.

"What time is it?" I yawned.

"Almost midnight."

"Of what day?"

"Friday now. Took us a day to get here. You look tired, we should get a hotel room," Brett suggested, sounding concerned.

"No. I've been to a club here where a lot of vampires hang out. It's Friday night, I'll bet he's there," I explained.

"I've been driving for a day. I'm tired, Rayne. We'll check it out tomorrow," he said sternly. I knew I couldn't change his mind.

"Okay," I nodded. We drove up to a hotel and he went inside. A few minutes later, he returned with keys to a room.

We found our room on the first floor of the hotel. I went in to the washroom and looked at myself in the mirror. I looked terrible.

I let my long black hair down and brushed it out. Then I walked out to the bed where Brett was already asleep.

He really was tired, I realized. But I wasn't ready for sleep, not just yet.

 

Chapter Fifteen

The music was loud and I could see a few vampires hanging around outside. I knew there would be a lot more inside. I parked the car and got out. Unless I began to fight, no one would know I was a witch. I was wearing a black skirt and tank top. On my way there, I had also put on my black lipstick. I fit right in.

I walked into the club and a few vampires looked at me. The place hadn't changed since the last time I'd come. Even the music was the same; Soil, Slipknot, Godsmack, Cradle. My favorites. Unlike the other witches I knew, I had a taste for death metal.

"Hi," a young vampire grinned. "Can I buy you a drink?"

"Sure," I smiled. I had to fit in. He ordered drinks and we sat down at a table.

"My name's Lionel," he said.

"Arika," I lied. My mother was a well-known witch, I couldn't risk saying my real name in a place like this.

He sipped his drink slowly. "I've never seen you around here, did you just move to Phoenix?"

"Actually, I'm here looking for someone," I explained, truthfully.

"Who? Maybe I can help."

"Elias Cerelia."

A couple of vampires near us looked at me when I mentioned the name. I wasn't surprised. Then Lionel glared at them and they went back to dancing. "He's the strongest there is. Why are you looking for him?"

"I must give him a message."

"Well I don't know where he is, but you could speak with his daughter, she will be here tonight," he told me.

His daughter? But other than me, he is the last of his line.

"His daughter-?" I said, but Lionel had already grabbed my arm and pulled me to the dance floor with him. Suddenly I forgot why I was there and I just let myself go with the music.

We must have danced for at least twenty minutes before something caught my eye. Three vampiresses walked into the club. Immediately, all attention was turned to them. More specifically, to the one dressed in burgundy. Though her hair was not quite as long as mine, it was like looking at me, without all the black make-up I wore tonight.

Suddenly, the pieces fell into place. Suddenly, I understood the story. And suddenly, I felt sick.

It was Elias' other daughter. "Mom was raped," I whispered to myself. "And she got pregnant-with twins!"

"Arika," Lionel said. Quickly, I remembered I had told him that was my name.

"Yeah?"

"That's her. Rei. Rei Cerelia. Elias' daughter."

Rei. Rei is my sister. That vampiress is my twin sister.

Instantly, I could see she was much more a vampiress than I was. Elias alone must have raised her.

She looked at me for a second and then to Lionel, who was waving.

"You know her?" I asked.

"Everyone does. If you want, I could introduce you to her."

I nodded. "Please."

Lionel walked over to her and I heard them speaking, though I couldn't make out again. Then she began to dance with the young vampires who were all over her. Lionel came back to me with a message.

"She said she knows who you are and why you're here. She'll talk to you at three, when the club closes," he explained. "Until then, you can dance with me and the others."

I accepted the offer and we danced until closing time.

 

Chapter Sixteen

I walked out of the club and looked around. Through the crowd of vampires, I could see Rei standing there, watching me. Slowly, I approached her.

"Come with me," she said and walked away. I followed.

"Where are we going?" I asked.

"Somewhere we can talk."

I nodded, reaching behind me to touch the cold, comforting blade of the knife at my back.

She got into her car, and I got into mine, watching her closely as she pulled out of the parking lot. Soon, we had pulled into a driveway and Rei was getting out of the car. I glanced at my watch; it was three-thirty. Brett wouldn't wake up for another five hours, and I'd be back before he knew I was gone.

I got out of the Bugatti and followed Rei into the house. It was small, and I realized it was almost empty when we got inside. There was an old chair and a bookshelf in the living room, and a table in the kitchen.

"Where are we?" I asked, still looking around.

Rei didn't say anything, but motioned for me to follow her up the stairs. There were only two bedrooms on the upper level, one with a door closed and the other with a simple unmade bed. She looked at me, and then knocked on the closed door.

"Who is it?" asked a voice from the other side of the door.

"Rei."

"Come in."

Rei opened the door and we walked into the small room. Elias was sitting on his bed, reading a book. Instinctively, I grabbed my knife and put it to his throat. A second later, Rei grabbed me and threw me up against the wall, hard. She took the knife from my hand and put it down on the table.

"Don't do that," she warned. Then she let me go, and turned to Elias. "Father, this is Rayne."

"Hello, Rayne. Nice to finally meet you." He reached up to touch my arm, and I pulled back.

"Why did you bring me here?"

"Well, this is what you came for, isn't it? To have all your questions answered?" Rei smiled.

"What did you do to my mom?" I asked, trying to keep calm.

"Raped her. I thought you would have figured that out by now," Elias grinned. I turned away. "Then I found out a few years later that she had had twins. Rei and yourself. I tracked her down, and took my child from her."

"You took Rei, because she was more vampiric than I was, right?" I asked, on the verge of tears.

"That's right. She was three when I took her back. I had watched both of you for a few months before deciding which of you would better carry on the Cerelia Line. One day while you and Rei were in the park, you found a bird with a broken wing. You, Rayne, you wanted to help it. You turned around to call to your mom, but when you turned back, Rei had smashed his head in with a rock. I chose her then.

"When I took Rei from Nydia, the witch didn't even put up a fight. She was twenty-two, she couldn't care for two babies. One, she could deal with, but not both.

"So, Rayne, does this answer your questions so far?" he smiled.

I didn't know what to say. How could Nydia have just let Elias take her baby from her like that? It could have just as easily been me that he had taken that day.

Rei began to laugh. "Rayne, he should have taken both of us. You would have had a lot more fun, hunting with me. More fun than you had hunting with Jacy."

Jacy. Elias killed Jacy. I told her I'd train with her, make her strong enough to defend herself, but he didn't give me a chance to.

"Jacy," Elias explained, reading my mind, "didn't put up much of a fight. You didn't train her very well, did you, Rayne."

I glanced at the table, and looked back to Elias. You killed Jacy. You killed my little sister.

"I should have raped her too," Elias laughed.

Without even thinking, I had taken the knife from the table, held it firmly in my hand, and drove it into his heart. I stared into his eyes as he slumped back against the bed. Then, realizing what I had done, I turned to Rei and held the knife up to her. She caught my hand and began to laugh.

"Thanks, Rayne, it's taken me forever to find someone willing to do that. Had I done it, I would have been disowned from my kind. But you, mostly witch, will have no problem getting away with it, if you can fight off everyone that wants to avenge his death."

"What?" I asked, confused. I lowered the knife.

"He's the oldest of our line. I'm tired of being second. As you saw at the bar, I get a lot of attention, but most of it is because of my father. I want my own. Anyhow, he wouldn't have been able to fight off hunters much longer; he was going to die soon anyway," Rei explained.

"How did you know I'd come?"

"It was because of me he killed your family. I tracked you down in Reno, when you were looking for my father. Then I found out from your friend, Akilah, where you were living. I made sure he found out."

"You helped him kill my family?" I asked, shocked. "She was your mother too."

"But she didn't fight very hard to keep me, did she. I don't have a mother, Rayne. Nor do I have a father anymore, thanks to you. You and I are both on our own now. We've only got each other."

I turned and walked out of the room. Each other? Does she expect me to stay with her now?

She came out of the room after me. "Think about it, Rayne. I'm your sister."

"Leave me alone."

"You and I could make a good team. I'd introduce you to the crowd. They'd love you as much as they do me," Rei called after me.

Down the stairs, slowly, one foot after another. My head was spinning. I had just killed the father I had never known; a vampire, who had raped my mother eighteen years ago. I had just found out that I have a twin sister, who looks just like me but is more vampiric than I am. I found my little sister, my mom, and my good friend dead just a night ago. My world was falling apart, crashing to pieces-and there was nothing I could do about it. There is one thing. I could stay with her.

No, staying with Rei was out of the question. I still had Brett, and I couldn't do that to him. I couldn't turn into what I have been fighting all my life.

I walked up to the car and got in. As I drove away, I could see Rei standing on the porch, watching me.

I know you'll come back, Rayne, you're a vampiress,

she whispered into my mind.

 

Chapter Seventeen

From the outside, our hotel room looked like it had the lights turned on. I took a deep breath. I hope he's not awake.

I opened the door a crack and looked in. Brett jumped up off the bed and ran to the door.

"Rayne, where the hell did you go?"

"Out." None of your business.

"Rayne, did you go see Elias?" he asked.

"I'm going to bed." I walked into the washroom and cleaned off my knife. Then I slipped it back into its sheath.

"You killed him?"

"It's none of your business, anymore."

"Rayne, you're going to get yourself killed! You should have waited for me," he yelled.

"I don't want to talk to you about this." Please leave me alone.

I walked out of the bathroom and he grabbed my arm. I turned around and slid my knife across his neck. I watched the blood run down his neck, onto his bare chest.

"Rayne," he whispered, grabbing his neck. "What are you doing?"

"Sorry, Brett. I've have to go." What's wrong with me? I felt sick.

I looked at Brett and saw the pain in his eyes. I needed to get out of there. I handed his keys back to him, and left. I began walking, though I was unsure of where I was going.

After walking for what seemed like hours, I sat down on a bus stop bench and watched the cars go by. Then, I noticed a black Jaguar slowing down. It was Rei's car.

"What do you want?" I asked as she stepped out of the car.

"I thought you might want to talk." Two other vampiresses got out of the car. They were the same ones she had been with at the club. I grabbed my knife, and held it as they walked closer to me. "Meet Sybil and Kesa." The two vampiresses nodded.

"Relax," Sybil grinned. "We just want to show you something."

"What?" I looked at Sybil. She was tall, with dark red hair, wearing a dark blue T-shirt and black jeans.

"Here's the deal, Rayne. In two days, you've lost your whole family, and your best friend," Rei explained.

"I didn't lose my best friend."

"Do you really think Brett will forgive you for slicing his throat?" Rei asked. Apparently, she was stronger than I thought; she had been reading my mind.

"No." I looked away. It was true; Brett would never forgive me for doing that to him. No matter how good friends we were, once someone hurt a witch the trust was gone.

"We will take you out with us, and you will live as a vampiress, for one night only. Then you can decide whether or not you wish to stay with us, or leave."

I thought about it, but not for long. With no one else in my life right now, I felt lost. "Okay. I'll come."

Rei smiled and looked at the two other girls. "Let's go have some fun."

 

Chapter Eighteen

The four of us got into Rei's black Jaguar and drove to a party a few streets down. Inside, there were vampires and humans. The humans were bleeders. They had been claimed by the vampires there and now devoted every second of their lives to making them happy.

Kesa walked over to the kitchen and handed me a beer. The music was blasting, and like at the club, it was death metal. Kesa and I began to dance, while Rei and Sybil went upstairs. Soon, it was five-thirty, and people were starting to leave before the sun came up.

"Where are Sybil and Rei?" I asked Kesa, who had been talking to some other vampires.

"Probably upstairs," she glanced at me, and then went back to talking.

I walked upstairs and looked around. I knocked on the first door and no one answered. No one answered from the second one, either. Then, I heard Rei's voice call out from one across the hall. I opened the door and stumbled backwards. Rei and Sybil were sitting on the bed with an older guy, probably about twenty-seven or twenty-eight. He had blood dripping from his neck, and he laughed as he sipped his beer again.

"Hi, Rayne," Rei laughed. "Would you care to join us?"

"No thanks-"

"Rei, I've got an idea," Sybil laughed. "We could take her hunting, instead of feeding her a bleeder like this."

Rei nodded. "Let's go." After she kissed the guy's cheek, she and Sybil walked out of the room and started down the stairs.

"No." I won't drink blood.

"Rayne," Rei sighed, turning around. "You're vampiress for the night, remember? You can do this."

"I can't-"

"Yes, you can," Sybil laughed. "It's fun."

"I don't know," I sighed. This wasn't what I was supposed to be. I was raised as a witch.

"Please, Rayne!" Kesa joined them at the stairs.

"Okay," I accepted, looking away.

 

Chapter Nineteen

We drove up and down the streets of a small neighborhood not far from where the hotel was, looking for anyone who was crazy enough to be up at this hour.

"Over there," Kesa pointed. There was a man walking out of a bar. Rei nodded and we drove up to him.

"Hi," Sybil said, rolling down her window. The man turned around. It was Brett. Suddenly, I felt as though my heart had stopped beating.

"Brett," I whispered. Apparently his love for me was stronger than was the rule of trust.

Sybil looked at me. "Know him?"

"Yeah."

Kesa and Rei got out of the car. I looked at Sybil. She shrugged and got out too. I looked out the back window; the three girls were standing there talking to Brett.

I opened the door and got out. Everything's going to be fine.

"Hey," I said, when Brett looked over at me.

"Rayne, I was looking for you, what are you doing?" he glanced at the two other girls. "Who are they?"

"Vampiresses," I shrugged. "They're taking me out for the night."

"Okay," Brett said, looking at them again. He was nervous, and unsure of why I was there with them.

Then Rei looked at me. "Well this is nice," she smiled. She put her arm around Brett's waist, and pulled him to her. He reached for his knife but Kesa knocked it out of his hand.

"No!" I screamed, but Rei had already pierced the soft skin of his neck with her teeth. Then she pushed him away and wiped the blood from her lips. Brett looked over to me, too shocked to move.

"Your turn," Rei nodded towards me. I backed away.

"Leave him alone!" I yelled, in tears.

Kesa and Sybil just looked at me. It's your turn, Rayne, they both told me in unison.

I looked at the blood dripping from the two small bite marks on his neck. Instead of feeling sick to my stomach, the urge to feed overwhelmed me; I could not fight the bloodlust. Carefully, I put my lips to his neck. The blood was warm. I pulled back and looked at Rei.

"Drink," she told me. I did. I drank until I felt Brett's body go limp, and then I let him fall to the ground. Wiping the blood from my lips, I turned to the three others, who were watching, satisfied.

"He's a witch, Rayne, and you drank from him. He will hunt you now, you have to finish it," Sybil explained. I nodded, and took the knife from my ankle. I knelt down, looking him in the eyes. He had enough strength to shake his head, but when he began to speak, I could hardly make out the words. He closed his eyes and I lifted the knife and slid it across his neck, deeper than I had last time. The blood seeped onto the pavement below him.

I turned back to the others. They stood, smiling.

"I just killed Brett," I whispered. "And I enjoyed it."

"It's okay, Rayne, he would have hunted you," Kesa assured me, and I nodded.

"You've done well, Sis. Let's go home." Rei put her arm around my waist and squeezed. I smiled.

There has always been good and bad. Right and wrong. Witches and vampires. And after eighteen years, I had finally found my place.

The End

By Kari Fisher

October 2002

The End

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