December 15. 2006
If you have heard of the 'ghost' of the fourth floor of LT, then you must have read my story on it. Yes, it was a real vampire; at least I think it was. I'm pretty sure it was. Anyway this story takes a whole different turn.
My name is Christine. We all remember the day we met the vampire vividly. We can see it as clearly as we can see this wolf event in our minds. This event happened about a month or two after the vampire incident. More people were involved with the wolf incident and it was more widespread than the vampire incident. There's no history of this occurring anywhere near us, in fact interesting stuff rarely happens in our district. However, ever since this second incident we have learned that our town isn't as boring and innocent as we thought it was.
Our story begins at Borders. Borders, is a book, movie, and music store located in LaGrange. The second story of the store is where the music, DVDs, and kid's books are located. In one corner there is a small coffee shop. I was sitting at one of the tables drinking a latte and reading one of my favorite books. I saw two pairs of shoes out of the corner of my eyes as two people walked up to me. I took a few moments to study the shoes. One pair were standard tennis shoes that were black with lightening bolts on them, and the other pair of shoes were black boots that reached a little above the ankle. I thought about who would wear these and came to the conclusion that it was Haley and Katie, the latter of which was standing behind Haley, holding a Star Wars comic. I looked up curious as to why they were here, and invited the two best friends to sit down.
I put my latte down and looked over the rim of my book. I noticed Haley reading the title. She shivered a little when she saw the word Vampire. Katie noticed this and rolled her eyes, indifferent to the past occurrence. The "Doings" sat on the table next to us and I watched as Haley reached over to flip through it. Katie noticed this too and we both watched her read the headline on the front page. Her eyes scanned the page and her face paled. Smiling weakly she took the book out of my hands, replacing it with the newspaper. My eyes must have widened because Katie was now ignoring her Star Wars comic. I glanced at the pair of them and read the headline myself: "Wolf Attacks Plague Homes." I cleared my throat nervously. When I was sure I had both girls' attentions, I began.
"Hey, listen to this," I paused to look at them. Haley nodded and Katie looked annoyed. I proceeded to read the portion of the article that was printed on the front page: "'On December 13, 2006 a series of murders were committed. Police say they believed it was homicide, until traces of fur and paw prints were discovered at all crime scenes. Police also report that the wolves must have entered the homes on the will of the occupants. There was no evidence of illegal entry or any reports of break ins. Police Chief Brody had this to say, "We are currently investigating each death, and the coroner has determined that each inhabitant in the homes at the times of the murders was ripped to pieces. We advise the citizens of the LaGrange and Western Springs areas to keep their door locked at all times and not to let anyone in unless they are known friends or family." Most of these attacks were throughout the LaGrange and Western Springs areas. Everyone is advised to stay in after curfew and be cautious when out in daylight hours."
I set the paper down and looked between my friends. Katie had leaned back in her chair and was clearly thinking about the situation. Haley on the other hand, was pale and looking at me as if I had just read our death sentences by hanging or the firing squad. I decided to break the silence, and as I folded the paper and returned it to its table I whispered,
"Can you believe that?"
"That's near us," Haley said nervously.
"Yeah, but wolves themselves are smart…" I trailed off as Katie interrupted me: "But not that smart."
"Looks like a mystery to me," I said innocently.
"Have you completely…"
".. lost your mind!?" Katie finished Haley's question quickly, in a reprimanding tone.
"All I said was…"
"We know what you're thinking and there's no way! Let the police figure it out themselves," Haley and Katie finished together.
"The police aren't going to do anything and you know it, besides I'm meeting someone else here," I said casually.
"Who?" Haley asked suspiciously.
"An online friend."
"What!? But that's dangerous, going alone to meet someone you don't know!" she scolded.
'You should talk," I retorted. "That's how you and Kevin started dating."
"That's completely different. She knew who it was before she met them, and besides at least she told her parents what she was doing," Katie said, jumping to protect her.
"I know," I replied tightly. "That's why I asked David and Mel to come with me."
"What are they, your body guards?" Katie asked sarcastically.
"No, they're just helping me out a little," I replied getting tired of their cynical attitudes. "I just called and asked if they wanted to meet at Borders if they had nothing better to do and they came."
"Where are they?" Haley asked looking around, as if she didn't trust my judgment or me for that matter.
"Over by the music last I saw them." I replied lightly.
"Oh! That reminds me: I have to get something!" Haley exclaimed, jumping up and jogging the distance to the Christian Rock section.
I raised my eyebrows, but Katie shook her head. I knew we were both thinking that Haley hated Christian Rock. Katie sighed and pushed her chair in, no doubt to go help Haley in her search.
They were browsing through the music when I heard slow, hesitant footsteps come up behind me. I turned around to see two teenagers not much older than my friends and I. A girl and a guy looked at me imploringly. The girl's hair was a strange red color and she had green eyes. Her companion was slightly taller, but clearly younger than her, and had short, black hair and deep brown eyes. I recognized them almost immediately from the red bandanas they tied around their wrists. That, and I had seen them on the news recently. Two murderers wanted by the law. They didn't look like murderers, but then again if vampires existed on fourth floors or in seemingly normal high schools then anything was possible. I jumped up and started to back up; hoping that they wouldn't come any closer and that one of my friends would come back soon. I said in a louder whisper,
"You….aren't you two murd-?"
The girl knew immediately what I was thinking. She stepped forward with quick reflexes and put a pale, cold, white hand over my mouth. Her eyes got that pleading expression in them and she said into my ear barely above a whisper, "We're not murderers. It was just a misconception."
"You know something about these attacks?" I asked hesitantly not sure whether to talk normally as we seemed to be attracting the attention of the counter clerks and other customers.
"Yeah, but…" she trailed off.
I looked behind me and noticed Katie and Haley walking toward me. They were in an animated conversation. They walked up and, upon hearing my next words, Haley froze and stopped midsentence.
"Well then, to begin with, I have a feeling that these wolves aren't normal. After what my friends and I have been through, with the vampire and all, I wouldn't be surprised if these attacks were something out of the ordinary."
"We can't talk here," said the boy quickly.
"Yeah, you never know some of them may be around here," she whispered conspiratorially.
I motioned to Haley and Katie, who had been caught up staring at us for the past few minutes. Haley was the first one to speak as she pocketed a penny she'd gotten somewhere. As she spoke she backed up her brown eyes widening. She gave her Look and said,
"Are you crazy!? You don't even know them. And besides they could you know - - - - us."
Katie nodded and offered her cynical backup to aid Haley's argument.
"Usually, I would refute her. Except you've never done anything this stupid. You don't know them. They could screw us up or kill us. You don't know what these strangers are capable of."
"Come on you guys,' I pleaded. " You can't be serious. Don't be like…"
"Like what!?" Haley said her voice going up an octave. She began backing away again, her arms outstretched as if she were protecting herself. "The last time we went on one of your 'let's solve a mystery' escapades I got pinned to a wall by a ghost vampire. I don't care what you wanna do, but I'm gonna jet."
It seemed that the entire second story was in on our argument. Right after she said that, Mel and David walked up head banging to some heavy metal song. Seeing Haley's stance, Mel inquired, "What's going on?"
"Well," Katie began before being interrupted.
"Christine wants to go who knows where with those two," Haley finished pointing to the boy and the girl. "Her online friends."
"Oh. So you two are the ones we're meeting today," David said extending his hand. "I'm David."
The boy seemed a little stiff but the girl nodded. She smiled shyly and said, "I'm Kate Folan and this is Tom Anderson."
I turned to David, Mel, and Katie with a pleading look, hoping they wouldn't bail on me. Mel smiled, probably hoping she'd get to bust a few Tai Quan Do moves, "I'm Mel."
Kate and Tom shook her hand and turned to the other two. Seeing that Haley was clearly not going to budge, Katie said, "I'm Katie. That's Haley."
With that Katie, David, and Mel turned to me as if getting the final judgment.
"I'm pretty sure we can trust them," I said confidently.
Introductions had already been made, so we decided we needed a quieter, less crowded place to talk and began walking out of the store. Haley consented to walk with us until we hit West Field and then she said she had somewhere to be.
We walked along LaGrange road and turned onto Cosset. As we walked in between the familiar Vaughn and School buildings I talked to Tom and Kate. Katie was walking with Haley behind the three of us and David and Mel brought up the rear. Mel and David had turned off their music and were keenly listening to the conversation, while Haley was trying to appear indifferent to what was going on.
"So, have you been following the news lately?" Tom asked. His deep brown eyes seemed to pierce into my soul. I nodded and replied, "Well, I have been watching the news and reading the papers. From what I've gathered from the broadcasts and headlines, I learned what happened in New Orleans."
I heard a snort behind me. The whole group stopped and stared at Haley.
"What?" She asked. "You know half the crap they put on television these days is censored. The papers don't give much else." She turned to Tom and Kate and said, "What she means is she found all she needed to know because Katie here and I risked our butts by looking into the police reports our dads brought home."
I glared at Haley. She shrugged and muttered darkly "That'swhatIgetforbeingdraggedalongonsomedumblet'ssolveamysteryescapade."
I shook my head and we continued walking. That's when Kate said something that reminded Katie of a conversation she'd heard in the hallway.
"Yeah. My mom's psychotic. She turned Tom into a …. Well, she turned Tom in the hopes that he'd become a full blood and that I'd mate with him."
"Yeah, she never expected I'd be a wereling though. She's hoped that Kate would be attracted to me and become the wolf she's always wanted her daughter to become. Kate doesn't much like her pureblood lineage."
"No I don't. I just wish we knew more about her plans."
Katie cleared her throat. We stopped for a second time and she said, "I heard these two guys in the hallway one day. They were talking about wolves, so I assumed it was some joke. But they said something to the affect of, "'Yeah, Marcie's being more of a bitch than usual. She said something about finding an ancient serum or something. She's having all of us tear apart homes just so she can get her hands on it. She told us she wants to find that pureblood daughter of hers and her wereling boyfriend. She said she wanted to test the serum on the wereling. It's supposed to turn the drinker into a full wolf, and it's also supposed to work on silverbloods. '"
"Sounds like they have new plans for us," Tom stated. He put his arm around Kate when he noticed that she was shivering. She shrugged it off and continued walking, staring into the open space in front of us.
We continued walking. Haley looked up and said, relieved, "We're almost to the end of West Field"
We looked around and noticed we had walked half way along the fence that surrounded West Field and the track. We would have continued walking had it not been Haley who'd asked,
"Are those the two boys you heard talking?"
We looked ahead of us. Two boys came off the field and sauntered the short distance from the fence to us. They stepped in front of Kate and Tom and asked us.
"Why are you guys hanging around losers like them?" The boy asking the question had blond hair and stormy green eyes. He pointed to Tom and Kate, making a face of disgust.
"Because we feel like it," Haley piped up, becoming unwisely confrontational. "And besides, they aren't the losers. You are."
"Haley, chill, we don't need to start a fight with them," I warned giving her my best 'are you trying to sign a death warrant' look.
"No," she answered my looks with words. "You've already accomplished that. I was just telling these losers to piss off."
"Oh, okay, so you'll just back off so we can talk to them for a while," The blond stated, a menacing warning in his tone.
"In you're dreams," Haley answered.
"I suggest you leave; we have a bone to pick with these two," the other growled, a malicious grin spreading across his face. He rolled his eyes, blowing his black bangs out of his green eyes.
"Yeah? And so what if we don't want to?" Haley asked. Her face was getting red and she continued, "Are you gonna make us? 'Cause if you are, I'm…."
Mel put a hand over her mouth and her words were reduced to mmph and ppft noises. Mel looked them in the eyes and asked, "Are you kidding? You actually think we're gonna leave and let you do what ever you want to them?"
"Not whatever, just talk." The black haired boy snarled.
Sick of tasting Mel's skin Haley bit her hand. Finally able to breathe air she mumbled quickly,
Apparently she didn't mumble quietly enough. The blond haired boy heard the insult and lunged at her. He didn't get very far because a black and orange sneaker connected with his shin and he fell flat on his face. Haley glared at David who had come up behind her.
"I could've handled him myself." She whispered grudgingly.
"Stupid fool," The black haired boy hissed scowling down at his friend, "you should know better than to charge them like that."
The blond boy looked up at his friend and returned with a smirk, "You're right."
He turned to Haley and said, "My apologies." His smirk turned into a twisted smile and he began to change along with his friend.
Both boys began to change. Haley didn't know what was going on but Mel, David and the rest of us recognized the gestures. The boys' bodies began to shake and their clothes tore off of their bodies. Denim tore and sneakers were obliterated as they took their true forms. They hunched over onto their hands and feet their bones cracking and popping and they reformed. Legs and arms began turning into forearms and back legs. Their necks elongated and their jaws lengthened. In place of canine teeth were long, sharp incisors.
In place of the two boys were horrible creatures. Closest to them was what used to be the blond. He was sleek and thin with course brown fur. His companion was powerful and large bristling gray fur covered his body. Both wolves were advancing licking their chops their sick green eyes void of any human emotion.
We began backing away, all except for Haley. She seemed frozen in her spot until Kate grabbed her pulling her back to stand with the rest of us. Kate's voice was angry and full of disgust, "Nice going."
Seeing that Haley didn't understand she continued, "How the hell do you think we'll fight them?" With that said she forced Haley to look in front of them. Tom was trembling rivulets of sweat trickling down his neck. His body began shaking. He looked back at Kate and mouthed 'sorry. It's the only way'. His bones gave loud cracking and popping and he gave into his change. He formed into his wolf self much quicker than the other two had. He looked back at us. Haley gasped noticing his eyes weren't green or yellow but the deep brown of Tom's real eyes. Nobody knew why but before Kate or anyone said anything Haley edged away from the fence. Slipping easily out of Kate's grip she set her foot on the concrete of the street. She looked at the brown wolf. In an over-confidant trill she said,
"Couldn't fight normally, huh? Had to resort to being a coward."
She smirked. Looking back at us she said quickly,
"Sorry, guys. Didn't mean to do this to you, but I really couldn't help you any other way." "Come on. You scared?"
The wolf growled lunging itself toward her. She turned on her heels and began to run.
After she left, Kate looked at us. Nodding we understood. I watched Tom for a while. He was clearly warning the other wolf not to come any closer. I decided not to stick around and followed Kate and the others as we fled down Cosset back toward the school. Up ahead we saw Haley still pelting it out the wolf growing closer and closer. Mel panted out,
"I wonder what she meant when she said, 'I really couldn't help you any other way."
"That." Kate said.
We turned our head seeing a third wolf, this one stared straight at Kate; emerge from the Edgewood on our side.
"Come on, guys. We should cross the street." David stated.
We followed him. The other wolf started after us and then Katie asked,
"How did she know that…"
"It doesn't matter," Kate snapped. "Run!"
As we neared the school we ran past the bus stop and watched Haley swing herself onto a tree and climb it. She then jumped onto the roof scrambling along the school heading for the back.
"Guys, we shouldn't stop." We looked over at Mel. That's when we noticed that wolf was only half a block from us. After passing the second entrance to the parking lot we split up. Katie, David, and Mel raced forward heading toward LaGrange and the parking lot near the tracks. Kate and I veered right heading the same direction that Haley had taken.
David and Mel ran. They didn't know if the wolf was still following them they didn't really care and neither did Katie. They reached the tracks and veered left into the parking lot. David reached the van first and slammed his finger down on the open button. He yanked open the driver's side door and threw himself onto the leather seat starting the engine. Mel was second in line and jumped into the front passenger side. David started driving. Catching his unspoken drift Mel reached back and opened the back door. Seeing the open door Katie dove into the car. The tires squealed as David flipped a u-turn and sped off toward the school. Still panting and slightly shaken Katie sat up and slammed the door shut
They were almost to Cosset when David slammed on the brakes and swerved to miss the wolf that was flying toward them at break neck speed. Mel who hadn't seen the wolf exclaimed,
"What the hell, David! Are you trying to kill us!?"
Katie groaned pushing herself off of the back of Mel's seat. She gulped in breathes of air while she said,
"Chill, Mel. I think he was trying not to hit someo..thing."
Mel unbuckled her seat belt and walked to the front of the car.
"Jesus, David! Did you have to swerve!?"
Wondering about this Katie followed David and gasped when she saw a half naked Tom lying on the road in front of where the car would have been. Tom looked up and attempted to stand. He swayed a little and Mel caught him. Katie walked back to the car and grabbed David's coat. She came back and said,
"Jeez. Put it on. You had to ruin a perfectly decent shirt." With that said she opened the passenger side and climbed in. Glaring at her Mel helped David get Tom into the back seat, before settling into the back herself. David slid behind the wheel and started the car again and drove on. He reached Cosset and slammed on the brakes again. Another wolf, one of the ones who had been the boys at West Field, salivated while staring at them. It looked straight in at Tom before turning and running in the opposite direction.
Meanwhile, Haley flipped down onto the sidewalk near the Route 2 bus stop. She hoped she had lost that wolf. A growl from behind her told her she hadn't. She backed away swiveling around to take a jog back to West Field.
Kate and I weren't having the best of luck either. I had gotten us into the school somehow and we were now running through the tunnel. We could hear the wolf behind us growling.
"Is that you're mother?" I chanced to ask Kate.
"No!" She gasped. She was clutching a stitch in her side. "It's Edmund Bronks. He's the full blood my mother had been trying to get me to mate with before Tom."
I nodded. I swerved to the left vaulting over the railing. Kate gasped. I said,
"Run till you get to those stairs. They'll bring you up into the building. Then just run into the gyms and exit out the back."
She nodded. I knew the wolf would probably not come for me so I was shocked when it glared at me. I decided to shut up and run. I ran and could hear its feet behind me. I ran up through a part of the school I had never been in and was relieved to find a back exit. Of course I did ditch my sweatshirt down another pair of stairs. I found myself in the back parking lot. I looked over and saw Kate. I signaled over to her and pointed to the sidewalk that led back to the parking lot. She nodded and followed me.
David drove down Cosset. Mel had pretty much told him she'd throw him out and drive herself if he did anymore of his crap. That's why when he slammed on his brakes for the third time she said, "David. What did I just…."
At the sound in Katie's voice Mel looked out the front windshield. Haley was lying in the middle of Cosset and the wolf was getting closer. It stalked toward her salivating. She pushed herself up. A grimace crossed her face as she fell right back down. The wolf drew closer using its front paws to pin her legs to the ground. The collar of her jacket bent aside and that's when they saw the jade and crystal pendant around her neck. It was glowing red and it looked as if were burning her skin. She twisted to the side. Her fingers reaching for something. Grabbing it she pushed herself up. Her brown-blond hair was loose around her face. Tom watched in wonder as she unsheathed a silver dagger. There was some sort of reddish-yellow sheen to it. The wolf pounced and she rolled away stabbing the creature in its shoulder. The wolf quivered before falling limp to the ground. That's when Katie jumped out of the car. Mel followed her as did Tom and David. She turned and grabbed her bag shoving the weapon inside.
"What the hell was that?"
Haley turned to them,
"What was what?"
"That weapon you just used?"
She glanced at Tom before standing and almost falling again. Tom and David caught her. The look on Katie's face was pure confusion and Mel just looked incredulous.
"Oh, stop gawking! And drive. We need to find Kate and Christ…"
Everyone in the car looked to the sidewalk to find a wolf running toward the blond who was now a half-naked boy. Mel beat David to the driver's seat and buckled in. Without waiting for David to close the door she sped past the wolf flipped a u-turn and gunned it straight toward the on-coming wolf.
"Still got that weapon?" Tom inquired hopefully.
Haley just glared at him and snapped,
."So what if I do?"
Kate and I ran. We saw another car in the parking lot.
"Great," I said. "There is no way I can run anymore.
'Wait! I know that car!' Kate exclaimed.
With that she ran toward it and hopped in. I decided to follow her. It couldn't hurt to trust her, right?
Mel hit the wolf dead on. Without hesitation Tom jumped out and extended his hand to the blond. Surprisingly the blond took it and shuddered. Katie looked away and shuddered.
"Come on! It's just a boy." Haley scoffed getting out with her bag. She pulled a shirt and boxers and shorts out. The three climbed into the car and David asked,
"What? Were you expecting this?"
"Maybe. That's none of your business." Haley snapped. She climbed over the back seat and sat down. Mel sighed and committed another u-turn and braked in a smooth stop in the parking lot. The group of now five climbed out of the car. They watched as a blue Sedan pulled up and Kate and Christine got out.
Walking up to Christine and Kate, Tom smiled. Kate glared over his shoulder at the blond.
"Don't worry," Tom said. "That girl did something to him while he was wolf. Before we knew it he was normal again."
Kate looked suspiciously at Haley who just glared at everyone in general. She glared at the blue Sedan as the driver's side door open. A man in his mid thirties with brown hair and blues eyes smiled at everyone. Kate sighed,
"Christine, Haley, Katie, Mel, David, and…."
Everyone looked at Haley including the blond who was now identified as Joseph Bowland.
"Who the hell is he?" She snapped, pointing at the driver of the Sedan.
"Joseph," Kate continued. "This is Adam Blood, a friend of ours. And," she sighed, "an enemy of the wolves thanks to us."
Adam smiled at everyone. His gaze lingered over the blond before her said,
"I must say Trolly; you've really got to warn me before you decide to show up with friends." He shook his head, "If I hadn't thought they were chasing you I might have picked you up sooner," he stated in a posh British accent.
The other boy, who had changed back after being hit, sulked off. Meanwhile we were in the parking lot discussing the recent events.
"Okay, so you know him?" I gestured toward the blond haired boy. Haley nodded.
"Do any of you know the other boy?" Everyone shook their heads except for David.
"That guy, he's in my gym class, which would explain why he didn't attack first, he anticipated that I would counter, sorry about that by the way." He looked over sympathetically toward Joe.
"Don't worry about it, I did attack you." His gaze drifted from David's guiltily.
"So, what now?" Tom asked.
"We find a place to stay, it looks like we may need to find out what Marcie's up to," Kate replied.
"They can stay with me," a voice said, "Tom could use our spare bedroom and Kate can stay with me." A shocked silence fell as all of us turned toward the owner of the voice. Haley gave us a blank stare in return. "What? They need a place to stay, don't they?"
"What about school tomorrow?" I asked.
"Looks like they're going as exchange students," she replied.
"That's good since all the best information is overheard at school. That should work for you especially, Tom," Kate said.