Prologue

I stifled a groan as the first bone popped out of place. "Mum," I said, in a strained voice, "You need to go now." She looked at me with sympathy, came and kissed my forehead, then walked out of the basement. I heard the clunk of the lock as she shut me in. Now that she was gone, the tears could pour freely. I fell to the ground as my knee caps dislocated, and let out a small squeak from the pain. But that was all. I never screamed, never howled. No, that was for the monster that was about to emerge in my place. My neck spasmed painfully, and I felt my consciousness slipping away from my body. At long last I let out an anguished scream, a scream for how unfair this was, a scream for how my life had been taken away from me. The scream changed into a pitch and volume that wasn't mine, and my mind went black.