P.S. This chapter is just the intro... but I promise the action will speed up in Chapter 2!



Outside the Hunter's Moon, rain was thundering down in blackish sheets to the concrete below. Hester Street was already flooded with oily rivers of rainwater; rainwater that caught glinting diamonds of light as it ran down the alley. Buildings had cast their menacing shadows over the cracked pavement, and the air was damp and thick, like an icy sauna.

Inside the bar, Freaky Pete glanced out of the little window beside him and into the impenetrable night. The window itself was streaked by a torrent of water, distorting the view to outside, but he knew that the crescent moon was hidden behind the dark, churning clouds and he could almost taste the electricity of coming lightning in the air. The lousy weather, he guessed, was what had brought so many customers into his bar that night. It had been awhile since the place had been so full of people. Almost every chair or barstool was taken, and even more people stood by the counter or the doorway talking with their drinks in hand. A few faces he recognized- Bat, Maia, Amabel- they were regulars, but most weres here were foreign to him; from an unfamiliar pack, he assumed.

Grabbing a dishtowel off the counter, he began to dry the waiting stack of glasses beside him. A sudden blaze of light filled the room, followed by a roaring clap of thunder that seemed to shake the windowpanes. Lightning, Pete thought with a frown, but the raging storm was impressive, even by his standards. New York hadn't had weather like this for years; and the rain kept coming… He'd just put the dry glass back on its rack when he heard the sound of the door opening and something sharp and fierce tensed inside him. He wouldn't have called it a sixth sense- not really. The feeling was more like a sort of animal intuition that came with being a lycanthrope; the kind of animal intuition that told him when something was wrong. He instinctively looked over the counter, towards the door, and quickly realized that he wasn't the only one watching and waiting. Every head was turned toward the now-open door, and eerie silence fell about the room as a shadowy figure stepped into the bar.

It was a girl.

At first he thought she was a vampire- what with her pale skin and dark clothes- but as she walked closer to him and the bar, he saw the telltale gooseflesh on her arms and legs, and he knew that she couldn't have been one of the Night Children. After all, the Night Children didn't feel the cold. She had the grace of a vampire, though, Pete noticed. She cut through the staring group of lycanthropes as if they had all the substance of a shadow; and something about the dignity of her movements had made everyone slide out of her way, creating a path for her to the bar.

The second thing he became aware of was how wet she was. Her long, blonde curls had been dampened to a rich gold by the rain and the dripping tendrils stuck to her face and shoulders. Her short black dress was sopping wet, making it cling to the contours of her body and stick uncomfortably to her legs, and on her feet was a pair of plain leather boots that were lovingly worn with use. A simple drawstring satchel was slung across her shoulder and in her arms she carried a mass of drenched, blood-red fabric that might have been her cloak. Pete could see why she wasn't wearing it; it was too wet to be of any use to her anyway.

In a single, fluid movement, she sat herself down on a barstool across the counter from him; her clear blue eyes studying his face with a calculated interest. She was young, he observed, not possibly older than nineteen, but there was something captivating in her sky-blue eyes that spoke of wisdom and cunning far beyond her years. Even apart from those eyes, though, she was as enchanting as the peals of white-hot lighting outside.

He put the glass he was holding down on the counter and gave the girl a friendly nod. "What can I get for you," he asked.

She smiled, as if the idea of having a drink at a bar amused her. "Thank-you," she began. "- But I really can't stay for long. I'm here looking for someone in the area and I was hoping that you could help me find him."

There was an audible groan of chairs as everyone in the bar leaned in to catch more of the conversation. Pete rolled his eyes. "I might be able to lend a hand… Who's the guy you're looking for?"

There was another creak of chairs as all the males in the room leaned in even closer until their chairs wobbled on two legs. Pete could read their expressions easily enough; they all looked like a bunch of love-sick puppies. Please be me, their eyes said. Pleasebeme, pleasebeme, pleasebe-

"I'm looking for a Mr. Lucian Greymark," she said. Pete watched as all of the chair-legs in the room fell back to the ground with a thud. She looked up at him through thick, silvery lashes, with a soft smile touching her lips. "Do you know who he is?"

His expression darkened with suspicion. "Yeah, I know Luke. What business do you have with him?"

The girl seemed to read his face like an open book. She laughed, and the sound it made was as lovely and clear as the chiming of bells. "Peaceful business, I can assure you," she chuckled. "Yes, I swear on the Angel that my business with Lucian will do him no harm."

-On the Angel? Freaky Pete gave her a searching look. The skin on her bare arms and legs was glowing and pale, but flawless- without so much as a Mark or a scar to be seen anywhere. If she truly was a Shadowhunter, like she claimed, she had some serious issues considering she was still un-Marked. He frowned. "Then you won't mind telling me what you want with him, little Shadowhunter, if you really don't mean him any trouble."

Sighing, she cast him a weary glance. "- And if I do," she said. "You'll contact him for me?"

"I can have him here in less than 30 minutes if I know I'm not putting him in danger."

She set her jaw. "And you give me your word?"


After a ragged exhalation of breath, she licked her chapped lips and nodded. "Alright," she murmured. "If you need to know so badly, it's because of Lucian's high connections to the Clave that I want him. I need him to do me a favor."

"What kind of favor?"

She swallowed. "I want to turn myself into the Clave." There were a few snickers from the crowd of eavesdroppers.

"Turn yourself in- for what?" He eyed her closely, but despite the haughty tilt to her chin he couldn't picture her as a criminal; especially not the type of criminal that the Clave would be worried about. She looked too fragile and innocent, like something made of pure silver and gold. "What crime could you have possibly committed?"

"Treason," she cut in, her voice detached and cold. "- Negligence if nothing else…"

"But why would you want to be turned in? Why not just-"

"Run like a coward?" Her voice was as pointed and sharp as a dagger, but there was raw agony burning in her ice-blue eyes like an unhealed wound. "I've been 'running' for months now and trust me; it's not as tempting of an alternative as you would think." She glanced at him, her expression dismal and blank. "There. I told you. Will you help me or not?"

Pete ran his fingers nervously through his shock of hair; something about turning in this girl felt wrong. "- And you're sure you want to do this? The Clave isn't something to just mess with…"

"Yes," she answered, dropping her empty gaze on the edge of the counter. "Yes, I know."

He cussed under his breath before reluctantly pulling his cell-phone out of his jeans' pocket. "Alright," said Pete stiffly. "I'll make the call."

How'd you like the beginning so far? :)... tell me what you think by REVIEWING! Oh, and like I said before, the next chapter will be much more interesting...

P.S. Thanks so much for reading! I can't wait to get to the part about Jonathan- 0.0 oooopss... Did I spoil something?...