All characters are the property of Stephenie Meyer. No disrespect or copyright infringement is intended.

Blood on the Moon

They do not need to know me.

I have decided long ago that few need to know me. I am not of them until their blood fills me and then, I am of them only for the moments they feed me.

This man thinks he is beautiful. He is not. He is as so many, coarse, unclean. His life will not be missed.

Let him see me, see this. Come to me. Yes, my golden hair pleases you, doesn't it? You like my body, you want my body. I bend forward over my foot so that he will see the yellow-haired woman in the small red dress stick her ass in the air. Sim, venha a mim. Yes, come now.

"Um pouco, você precisa da minha ajuda?" he asks, as if he could help me in anyway other than dying. How easily he is fooled when he sees what he wants.

"Poderia vir um pouco mais? Eu sou tímido." Let him believe I have no voice because I am timid. He believes he is beautiful to me. I know I am beautiful to him. Closer, closer. I am your destruction.

Ah, as I thought. He is no different than most men. He pulls himself closer, thinking he is a man. He does not reach for my hand to steady me, he reaches for my ass to have me. Have it, have my ass. Closer. Closer.

"Você vê o que você tem?" Let him see me now, see all of me. I am a monster, and I am here to take you. His eyes are wide with fear. His heart trembles. He wants to run, but I am too fast. His cries do not ring as his blood runs hot down my throat.

Human men hold little interest for me. They are pao de queijo – cheese bread – no more fascinating or alluring than this. They cause pain. Their hearts beat. Their heads are empty.

I do not hate men, though the reasons to hate them are many. They are mean. They are weak. They prey on those who would love them. It is disgusting.

Most men of my kind are the same. Vampiro, human - basicamente o mesmo, few things separate them. Exceptions are few, but there are exceptions. I have met four men, golden-eyed Cullens, vampiro who are different. Four. Only one is not claimed, and he is not for me.

Kachiri rises from her kill and she is full. She greets me, smiling. The blood in her mouth is beautiful. She is tall and dark. She is a beautiful warrior, as Periboriwa, the moon goddess. She smiles as the butterflies I give land in her hair.

Senna squats in the forest over another kill. I see her eyes on fire from hunger. She does not like to be seen eating. Senna growls. Yes, she is hungry. I look away back to Kachiri. I smile.

Our home is not far from here. I whistle to Senna to let her know we are leaving. Kachiri nods and we walk home.

The forest is quiet today. It will rain. The air is still and the sky is dark. Kachiri and I walk without talking. She is my sister, my friend. There is a comfort between us as there has been for so long. We do not need words.

I was young and eager to have my man. I was young and beautiful, strong. The men of my village wanted me, but I refused. Omami wanted me and I wanted him. He completed Bumba-meu-boi easily, taming my father's donkey on his first try. My father did not want to release me to Omami and tried to escape tradition. I did not know why. I was proud he had won my hand. Tradition was kept and I was his.

I wanted Omami to know me, I wanted him to want me. Our wedding night, we drank capirinha and talked until night became dawn. We slept in each other's arms until day became night again.

Omami was eager to claim my virginity. His eyes filled with want and sound growled from his chest. He tore my wedding dress, ripping it apart to see me naked. At first, I was happy, excited, glad he wanted me. But as eagerness grew to violence, I knew the passion was not for me.

My mother had said it would hurt. I was ready for little pains, covered by excitement and pleasure. But Omami liked pain. My pain. And not the little pain. As he took me the first time, he pulled my hair and cupped my mouth. He whispered in my ear, "Do not pretend you don't like it, Zafrina," and began to choke me. I cried out, and he slapped me. Each cry brought a pain – a slap, a fist, a push, a pull. He grunted his excitement with each blow. I prayed to Periboriwa to save me.

Omami pushed me to the grounfd when he was done. "What good are you? I work for tears? Spoiled child!" He kicked me in my side, then left our home. He did not return until mealtime the next day.

I went to my parents home and told my parents what happened. My mother told me not to cry. My father told me I had what I wanted. I returned home alone.

Each night of our first year, Omami took me. Each night, he hurt me. He was strong, and I did not know to fight. Each night, I prayed that he would love me, touch me gently, and each night I rose with disappointment. I spoke to no one. I did not have friends. I did not see my parents. I went to the well at night so my town would not see my swollen face. Days passed. Nights… Nights were pain. I was alone.

After one long night of pain, Omami said, "You are useless. You do not work hard. You are fat and ugly. Go away." He pushed me through the door of our home and into the village. I left with nothing. I had only my dress that barely covered my growing body. I left my home. I went to the well to clean myself. The face in the water was not mine. It was a mask of pain and brutality. It was beaten and misshapen. I was not there.

I was without friend or direction. I stumbled through the jungle away from our village, frightened and defenseless. The night was moon bright and it became my hope. I had to find cover and rest, though I knew none would have me.

I ran to the caves where I had played as a child. That first night, I fell on the soft sand of the cave mouth and cried myself to sleep.

When I awoke the next afternoon, it was almost night. I found bananas for food and used the leaves to weave mats. Days went on, and a rhythm came to my life. I hid from those in my village who would not welcome such a poor excuse for a woman. At night, I would seek food and water. I stole fire and pitch from the village. When I returned to the well, my face began to look back at me from the water. I lived. I survived. I became slower and fatter. I did not flow.

One night as I sat at the well, Omami's voice came through the air. My blood ran cold and I could not find air. I did not want him to see me. I crouched by the well, not breathing. I waited for him to pass, praying I could escape without being seen.

A girl's laughter mixed with his voice. I listened without moving. They laughed together, and my heart sank. My shame was complete. I was no longer his woman. I knew I had to leave.

The laughter stopped and sudden, sharp cries of pain pierced the night. She cried. I cried. My stomach heaved. I tried to stand, but could not and fell back to my knees. Something was wrong.

I grabbed my stomach as the pain grew. A cry escaped my mouth, and I knew terror the moment it struck the air. I tried to stay quiet, I tried to hide. If I could hold out a moment more, just wait until he went home… The pain pulled me to the ground and blinded me. When I opened my eyes, Omami stood over me with the girl, one of his hands twisted in her hair. Her face was wet from crying. She was young, pretty and terrified.

My fear gave way to shame. I closed my eyes and begged for forgiveness. His face changed, tension and anger leaving him. His face was beautiful again. He threw the crying girl to the ground and leaned down to me, gently lifting my face in his hands. "Zafrina," he said softly. He voice seemed kind.

I breathed deeply in relief just as the bucket hit my head. I heard the crack of the wood and felt the bite of the metal band. He hit my head, my hands, my stomach. As the bucket collapsed and broke apart, he hit me with his hands and kicked me with his feet. He beat me until I did not move.

I heard him laugh as he dragged the girl away, her screams of terror piercing the night, before all went black.

"Zafrina, bebê, shhh…" My mother's voice was sad and calm. She held my head in her lap, rocking me like a little girl. I tried to rise. She held me down.

"Mother, why are you here? Where am I?" The room was dark and cool. Daylight shone through the walls, but the flap to the outside was lowered. The mats beneath me were warm and wet.

"Zafrina," she said, her face stained with tears. "You lost the baby. You are not a woman. Your father is in shame. He will not go to the well today."

I looked at her without fear. There had been a baby, but now it was gone. My baby. Gone.

"A … baby?" I asked. My baby. Gone. "What was it?"

"She is gone. There's no need to talk about it now. Now, you must rest, little one. You must heal."

"A daughter?" I felt hot tears welling in my eyes, overflow and spill onto my cheeks. My baby daughter. Gone. Gone.

I turned my head to the side to hide, and my body screamed its pain. I looked down at my stomach to see where my daughter had been. I was covered in blood. The pain was everywhere and everything. I was sick and weak and scared.

"Mother, will I die?" I knew the answer from her face.

The end would come soon, I knew. My hunger and thirst throbbed in the back of my head. My body did not heal. My soul was dying. My parents believed me dead already.

The moon shone through the walls, and I could see my stomach glistening with blood. Shapes moving outside. I did not know what they were. I did not know where I was. I no longer cared who I was.

I opened my eyes again. Pain wrapped around me as tight as my skin. I moaned and felt the air change above me. I looked up, and saw the goddess Periboriwa kneeling above me. She was more beautiful than legend, dark and tall, with teeth as bright as her home flashing in the night.

Her head turned away from me to another. She said, "Now. It is time, or she will die." Her focus shifted back to me, with eyes as dark as night in pools of milk. Her face spoke pity.

A young girl stepped from behind her, outlined in the night. I knew this girl: she was the pretty girl Omami had chosen to replace me, the girl he had thrown to the ground so that he could kill me. "Now, Kachiri" she said. She smiled at me as she knelt. Her knee pressed to my shoulder. She said, "This will hurt only once. I promise."

This quiet walk is my haven. This jungle has been more home for hundreds of years and I am hidden until I choose to be seen. I am immortal now, safe. I will not know age or death. I will not know cold or pain. I will not know sleep or motherhood. I will not need protection. I will not need rescue. I do not want.

So many lifetimes ago, Omami took my child. He tried to take my life. He will hurt women no more, his bloodless body now rots beneath the forest floor. Kachiri consumed Omami and pitied Senna. And Senna pitied me. We are changed, we are legend and we are fierce. Our lives now are as one, and once again I am happy.

I am the hunter now. I take from those who take from women. I am no longer ignorant of the fight; my fight is swift and deadly. I am the warrior who is and is not, a shadow in the night, a drop of blood from the moon. My daughter, had she lived, would be safe from men such as Omami.

Had she lived. She will never walk, never grow, never love, learn, or light another's way. I regret her death. I miss her as though I knew her and feel her absence each passing year.

As Kachiri and Senna are my sisters, so they are also my children. We are all to each other, comfort for those human things we left behind and solace for those things to come. One day, I may be as mother to one of my kind. I do not know, I can only hope.

We walk, our silence a treaty between us. Our home are the trees, the earth, the wind and the rain. This is our refuge and our haven. It is known to us. We move through the brush without sound. The trees echo our silence, confirming our place in legend.

Wait. The jungle moves. Senna is with us instantly, and we crouch, prepared for any threat.

A small, smiling woman steps forward through the growth. A man is with her, near, but he is not in view. She is tiny and open, her face is pretty and her smile touches her brow. Her eyes are Cullen and wise, and she is unafraid.

"I'm Alice," she says, "Alice Cullen. I bring greetings from Carlisle. I have a story for you, and it will please you." She pauses, watching our reaction. The man steps into view behind her, and his eyes are Cullen, too. He has fear for her, and he will wait to judge our response.

I stand, straightening to my full height. My sisters stand with me. These Cullen-eyed vampires are different and their words hold promise. We will hear her story.