4

Amy wasn't home when our dinner time rolled around, so I decided to cook for myself. I made a can of chicken soap on the top of the stove and ate it all. Maybe Amy was eating hawk-style tonight. That meant mice by the beak.

When Amy did get home an hour later, her face was pale as soon as she walked up to me. "I saw her again during my flight," she stated. She sat down on the couch next to me. "She walked into some apartment building down the street. I think she's living there."

I only mumbled, "Mhm." I was too wrapped in the TV to make sense of what she was saying.

"Gem, are you even listening?" she asked.

"Yeah," I replied sheepishly.

"Yeah, right," she sarcastically said. "I said that the ancient, dangerous vampire lives right down the street. Our street. Not some street ten or three miles away. This street. We're in some serious danger, Gem."

I could only stare. "Alina, I'm absolutely serious about this. Not joking," she yelled at me. I quickly snapped out of it and understood. We were in trouble.

"Aw, crap. Does that mean we're moving again? Already?" I asked, worried that meant I wouldn't get to see Ian again.

"No. Not yet, at least. We'll wait at least a week and see if anything happened. We don't want to raise her suspicions and come after us."

"You really think she will, don't you?"

"Yes, I do. I'm very sure of it," she said with false confidence.

"Well, when she does, if she does come after us, then I'll agree to leave. For now I'm happy where I'm at, thank you very much." I crossed my arm as I slumped into the couch.

"Okay," she agreed. "Are you hungry?"

"No. I ate canned soup," I told her.

"Sorry I was gone so long. I already ate."

"Whatever," I yawned. "I'm going to go get ready for bed. Gotta big pre-calc test tomorrow."

"Good luck." She smiled at me.

"Yeah, well, good night." And I hugged her. I walked into my room and put on my night gown. I plumped onto my bed and started shuffling through my notes, trying to pound the information in them, into my brain.

After about five minutes of that, my mind slipped back into the dreamy state where I think about the day's event. Ian. The amazingly hot Ian. Eyes like blue sapphires, hair like obsidian.

Tomorrow mourning I would see him again. His graceful body would slink into the room, slither to his seat and he'd be watching. His emo-hairstyle hiding his emotions. He might even decide to continue flirting with me. I wanted him. I never wanted a guy before. I was so independent. I want someone now.

My eyes could make out the numbers of the math notes any longer, so I got into my covers and shut off my lamp. I drifted off in a matter of minutes and was soon dreaming. Dreaming about Ian.

Ian stood before me. His chest was bare. He called out, Alina. I reached for him, but he was too far away. Alina, come here. I have something to show you. I tried to get to him, but he was always too far. Alina, he said again.

You can call me, Gem. I tried to say. I wasn't sure if I said it out loud or if I was thinking it.

Gem. I like that. Gem, I have something to show you. Come here. His body seemed to shake a bit. I wasn't sure what was happening. His body was shimmering now. His form was deteriorating, shrinking to something thinner. The dark from slithered on the ground, toward me. Ian was no longer here. In his place was the dark, scaly form. It moved gracefully and had the same blue, jewel color eyes as Ian did. I knew I was dreaming, then.

I woke up thinking about it. Was it a dream? Was it just my mind making stuff up? My clock said it was 3:00am, and knew that I wasn't thinking straight. Was Ian a shifter? Could shifters enter dreams? I've heard of shifter magic being strong enough to have premonitions or even to paralyze victims, but entering dreams? That's unheard of!

It was only a dream, and Ian wasn't really in it. I told myself that until I fell asleep again. Ian, sadly, wasn't in any of my other dreams.