Disclaimer: Sadly my name is not Stephanie -tear-

Bella's Point of View

It was a cloudless evening in Houston, Texas. The normal chill of the wind was replaced now by a dry heat that radiated in waves. Though it was almost night, no one was even thinking about sleeping. It seemed that everyone was anxious for news of the war. A traveler had ridden through the streets last week carrying the news of a new battle- the Battle of Bull Run.

I sat on a rock by the stream running through town. The road was to my left about 10 yards, my house was a quarter mile in the other direction. All behind me were woods, deep and thick. The stream flowed from the woods behind me, the only fresh water for miles.I stared into the water, flowing smoothly through the ground.

I was worried sick for my brother. Somewhere, my older brother, my seventeen-year-old brother, was fighting for the Confederate Army. How could he have left me? I understood he wanted to serve his country, but he was only seventeen! And now he was off at the Battle of Bull Run.

We had received news a month ago of his promotion to Major and I was happy for him. Of course he would be well-liked, it was just in his nature. He was charismatic, everyone felt at ease around him, so naturally, he was rising in the ranks.

Still, I missed him. I was selfish, I knew, but I felt like I was missing part of myself with him gone. He was my companion, my protector; he could always make me feel better. When dearest father had a new suitor whom he desperatly wished me to marry, my brother would be my comforter when father became angry at my refusal. Now, he was gone, and father was more adamant than ever that I be married by my seventh birthday about a year from now.

I sighed. I really should be getting back soon. I was a fiercely independent girl and if my father was in a bad mood, I surely would be punished for my late arrival. I jumped down from the rock, remembering all the times my brother had helped me down when I was younger. Hopefully, he would hurry home. I missed him terribly.

It was then I heard it. A small gallop coming near town. It was far off in the distance at the moment, but it would be hear soon. I was furthest from the town so no one would know yet. I was jumping up and down with excitement maybe there would be news of my brother!

The sound was nearing now, and in the distance I could see a cloud of dust in the air. After a minute a horse came into view, with a Confederate soldier on its back. He hopped down as he reached me.

"Hello miss." he told me in a thick Sothern accent, tipping his hat. "Would you happen to know where the Whitlocks live. I have a message for them."

"Yes, sir, I would." I smiled at him. "I am Isabella Whitlock," I curtsied, "at your service."

His expression changed immediately. His face atomatically became shocked and upset. Oh no, that was not good. He fidgited.

Finally he spoke, "I am very sorry to tell you this, miss, but it seems your brother, Major Jasper Whitlock, is missing in action. He disappeared while evacuating the town. We believe the enemy ambushed him in his duties, for he was a great Major and posed a threat to them." He looked at me sympathetically, "I am terribly sorry for your loss. I knew Major Jasper personally. He was a great leader and an even more honorable friend. I am proud to have served with him, and to have known him."

I was crying full-out tears. Jasper, gone!! It could not be happening. My brother could not have been killed. There is no way!! He promised he would come back! He promised!

I could not take it anymore. I needed to get away from this, but my parents needed to know.

"My...My..." I was sobbing. When I had finally calmed down enough to utter a coherant statement, I told the man, "My parents need to know." I sniffled. "Our house is 1/4 mile that way." I pointed the direction to the man. "And would you please tell them I will be back late tonight. I need time to handle this."

He nodded, "Of course, miss." He hopped on his chesnut horse again, "And please know, your brother died a hero, and he will be remebered as one. He will be missed by all who knew him." And with that, he rode off.

I could not handle it anymore, I ran to the woods I had been in front of. I just needed to get away, and grieve for my brother. It was just now sinking in that I would never see him again. I ran into the woods as far as my legs would take me, before I collapsed as sobs overtook me.

I would never see him coming home from working in the fields, a grin on his face as he saw me, his hands swinging at his sides while he loped to the house. I would never see his blonde hair, sweeping in the wind, as he sat on the porch steps. I would never feel another of his calming hugs as he told me everything would be alright. I would never hear him tell me about how much he wished he could go to the war, to serve his country, for he was never again returning from the army he set out to join.

I recalled our last moment together before he left. He had been extremely happy to join the recruits, but he was upset he had to leave me. he had given me a huge hug and told me that one day, one day he would see me again. That no matter what, wars, or countries, or people, nothing could stand in his way of seeing me again. He said he would always protect me, no matter where he was because he would always be with me. I remember I had asked him, my eyes full of tears, how he could protect me if he was gone. He said he would never truly leave me, because I would always have a piece of him with me, just as he would always have a piece of me.

"Well, well. What do we have here." I turned at the sound of an unfamiliar voice and was startled as the most beautiful woman I had even seen stood in front of me.

She was pale, pale as alibaster, obviously not from the South. Her chocolate hair fanned around her face perfectly. But one thing shocked me most, her burgandy eyes. They were piercing, searching, as if looking for something hidden in me.

"You will do very nicely," she said in her melodious voice. And with that she leaned forward and before I could move, something sharp had pierced my neck.

FIre. Pain. Burning everywhere. That was all I could remember. I had no clue what was happening to me. I screamed constantly, willing for someone to hear me, to put me out of my misery. I would have given anything for it to stop.

Finally, the pain dimmed down, and I heard a soft thump...thump...thump. Then silence. My heart had stopped. But I wasn't dead, was I?

I decided I needed answers, so with the most effort it had ever cost me, I opened my eyes. There I saw the strange red- eyed female that I had seen before the burning, I remebered now. I noticed now that everything seemed sharper, more defined. Like something in my eyes had been shifted so I could now see perfectly. My hearing had also increased. I could hear individual leaves rustling, as well as what i assumed to be small animals making their tracks in the ground.

"Who are you?" I asked her. "What did you do to me?"

She smiled. It looked absolutely menacing. "I turned you into a vampire." Did I hear that correctly, a vampire? She saw my confusion immediately. "Yes, a vampire. My name is Envenline, and I bit you three days ago." Three days! It felt like an eternity. "Now, I should explain some things to you before you get some crazy ideas. First of all, we drink blood; we sparkle, not burn in the sun; we have perfect senses; we have incredible speed and strength; some of us have extra gifts, too. Oh and last of all, we are immortal."

Seriously!! Immortal! Thats crazy! The reasonable side of me was catching up. My senses were heightened and I went through compete torture for three days, though I still did not know how in the world this was possible, it was the only acceptable explaination. "We can't die?" I verified.

"Oh no, we can die. We just have to be ripped to pieces and burned to kill us though." She stood up, "Now, we are going to go to your new home. You see, I am the head of a coven of newborn vampires, and we are fighting over Houston right now. Needless to say, I needed more help and here you were, ready and waiting." She looked at me, "And do not even think about fighting me. I will win, I have been fighting other vampires much older than you for centuries now."

What was I supposed to do!! I did not want to fight in a war! That brought up too many painful memories of Jasper. I knew I could not fight her, though. I wished she would just leave me and never come back! My thoughts became reality as she suddenly looked at me strangely, turned around, and ran away. I realized then I had a power. A power that would cause me more trouble than I could ever imagine in years to come. I had always tried to control my own future and my situations, and now I could. I had the power of control.