I've finally gotten the continuation of The Pawn of Angel Bay started. Boy it took me forever to go anywhere with it but here it is. Feel free to criticize characters because as the story progresses I don't think I got them down pat but oh well. I'm not as familiar with Dark Shadow characters as I am with other characters. So, hope you enjoy it!
Carolyn Stoddard stepped down the stairs without a single look back. She knew if she did, she would see that everyone avoided her eyes, the passing teachers included. Even though a year had passed everyone was still skeptical about her family and what exactly happened the night Angelique Bouchard 'left' Collinsport. As far as she knew, no one wanted to believe what they saw that night and most wrote it off as panic. As for Angel Bay, the Collins took over that as well. was still Carolyn distanced herself from her school, beginning her trek back home. For the sake of the comfort of the passengers who still were uneasy around her and her family, she didn't bother with the bus and opted to walk when she couldn't get a ride otherwise. Carolyn rolled her eyes at the stupidity of their fear.
"The only thing they have to worry about is whether I'll deck them for being such idiots," she grumbled to herself, readjusting the strap of her satchel. She turned to push open the large gate that marked the entrance to her home, Collinwood. The grounds surrounding Collinwood were now in the best shape it had ever been since reconstruction. The workers worked around the house here and there but no one minded. They started in the most used rooms and then branched out so that they interacted even less with the Collins family. By day, Barnabas relayed all his concerns to Elizabeth should the workers question, and by night they dispersed, just as afraid as anyone else to be there when the sun was down. Carolyn walked up the main road, through the grand gate, and then up the walk to the door. She opened it to step into the exact replica of the old Collinwood. No one greeted her, yet. She preferred to not be spoken to unless she spoke first, especially after or close to the full moon.
It kept a boundary she found comfortable and allowed her to talk to others easier while her temper loomed ominously close to the surface. The whole ordeal with the witch Angelique Bouchard made the family much closer and Carolyn had to admit, it felt better this way. She found it much easier to be around her family now that an understanding had been established. She climbed the steps to her room and entered, leaving the door open for now. She didn't feel the need to keep herself separate from the rest of her family like before. She supposed it was a subconscious way to keep them from her animosity. Now, she welcomed anyone who didn't come to chatter her ear off or lecture her. That, she still didn't like. She pushed off her shoes and then set her satchel down. The first thing she liked to do when she got home was relax. After words, she would have to start any homework she had. She fell into her swinging chair and leaned back. It was the one piece of furniture she just had to have replaced no matter what.
"Carolyn, are you home?" her mother called from somewhere close by, knowing she could hear. Now that everyone knew what she was, they often did small things that let her know they knew and that it didn't bother them at all. In fact, it came in handy at times. She stood and took the stairs down so she could call back, letting the vast mansion echo her reply. She briefly wondered how irritated Barnabas would be at their exchange when he woke up. She smiled and replied.
"Yeah, I'm home," she called. She walked back up to her room and began looking through her bag for her homework. She sat back in her chair and then opened her notebook to a new page. A slip of paper slid out and she caught it before it could hit the floor. One look at it made her eyes widen. It was the note she had passed with John Doe today. Of course, that wasn't his real name, just a nickname she had given him. The day they first talked was a week after she had returned to school. He had just moved into town and was the only one who didn't see her as weird upon first meeting despite what others told him.
At that time, she didn't even want friends and concentrated on her work but John was determined to break through her tough exterior for reasons she was curious about but didn't want to know. She didn't care for his name so he didn't tell her. When she did have to speak to him she called him John Doe. He laughed and that was his nickname ever since. She continued to hang out with him during school for another week before she heard his real name spoken by the teacher calling on him. His real name was Daniel Levine although she heard his friends sometimes call him Levy. As the days passed by, she noticed his friends often tried to distance him from her but he held on. She didn't like the sneaking suspicion that he actually liked her.
"What am I supposed to do?" she wondered as she flipped to the back of the long note conversation they had that day. A short note greeted her.
'We should hang out sometime. I know at this point you would say that we already are but I mean outside of school. It'll be fun, I promise. Just let me know.' -JD
She vaguely wondered if she should even talk to him anymore knowing he was interested in being her friend. After all, she didn't feel she could let him visit should Barnabas let fly weird statements and not to mention certain nights when she would be completely unavailable. She shrugged and tucked the paper back in her notebook. She then spent a few minutes getting her homework done and then defaulted to listening to music until dinner. She barely heard the music. Her thoughts kept going to Daniel. Footsteps on the stairs made her glance at the door but Victoria was already standing in front of her. She could only catch the sound of the two vampires in her family after they were already upon her. It irritated her slightly but she dealt with it. Victoria waited patiently for her attention. Carolyn turned off the music.
"Dinner is ready. I thought I should come up and let you know," she told her. Carolyn raised an eyebrow.
"Do you have something to say other than that?" she questioned the newly turned vampire.
"I think there's something on your mind and I just wanted to let you know I'm here for you if you want to talk," Victoria admitted. Along with David; Victoria had a good amount of intuition.
"What makes you think I have something on my mind?" Carolyn replied, averting her gaze.
"You've been awfully quiet every day since returning to school. If it was bullies it wouldn't affect you and if it was rumors you would be complaining. Therefore, I think you have something else on your mind," she deduced. Carolyn sighed and looked out the window.
"I guess you could say I have a friend," she mumbled. Victoria cracked a smile and sat next to her on the bed.
"Really, who is it?" she asked curiously, genuinely interested in what the teen had to say. Carolyn looked over at the pleased smile on her Aunt Victoria's face. She radiated such trust that Carolyn almost instantly fell into it. She found herself going to Victoria when she had any trouble. They were becoming fast friends and provided a translator between Carolyn and Barnabas who she began to get along with too. It helped that he threw a grand party at Carolyn's suggestion the first time he showed up.
"His name is Daniel Levine. I can't say I don't like him because he has a way of not agitating me but I'm still unsure if I should accept his friendship when I'm still unsure about myself," she explained. Victoria grinned.
"I see, well I think you should be yourself and spend time with him. Don't worry about negatives or what ifs and have fun," Victoria suggested. Carolyn let out a small embarrassed laugh and turned away. She never felt she could be herself unless she was around Victoria.
"Yeah, I guess I could do that," she replied hesitantly. Victoria nodded and then stood.
"Hey, let's get you something to eat. I know you must be starving by now," she teased. Carolyn stood. She followed Victoria out of the room to the dining room. Dinner was the only time Barnabas stressed the necessity of unity. It was supposed to be the one time the family could interact together. She took a seat by David while Victoria sat by Barnabas who was at the head of the table on one side. Elizabeth sat at the other side in her usual seat. Willie came in and set the food on the table. Barnabas started the conversation as always once they were all accounted for.
"My dear family, how has your day gone?" he asked them gallantly. David answered first, eager to share with Barnabas. He had grown close to his vampire uncle ever since his father, the lowly Roger, left him.
"My day was great Barnabas. At school, I made a friend named Peter. He and I have a lot in common," David said excitedly.
"That's wonderful David. Glad to see you're making friends," Victoria said, briefly glancing at Carolyn pointedly.
"That's good," Elizabeth agreed with a curt smile.
"Indeed, friends of our family are most welcome here. If you want to invite him over do so master David," Barnabas encouraged. Victoria smiled at him.
"And Carolyn, did you have a good day?" Victoria asked, bringing attention to her. Elizabeth looked up curiously at her daughter.
"Um, well, yeah, it was fine. The usual," Carolyn smoothly lied. She returned her attention to her food and remained quiet. Elizabeth watched her in concern. Her sudden appearance in wolf form that night may have surprised her but she was still her daughter. She knew it bothered Carolyn once in a while. She only hoped it didn't hold her back from being happy.
"My day was grand. I cleaned, cleaned, and cleaned some more. I ran down to the Blue Whale and then-" Willie began, walking into the room.
"That's nice Willie, not in front of the children. I had a good day," Elizabeth cut in hurriedly, redirecting the conversation away from Willie's usual ranting.
"As did I," Victoria put in with a nod.
"Good, splendid to hear. I am told Collinwood will be completely finished in a few more days and when that is accomplished we shall try to throw another 'happening' as young Carolyn puts it. I am determined to show the people of Collinsport that their canneries are in good hands," he stated confidently.
"Will we be going out to check on the cannery tomorrow Barnabas?" Elizabeth questioned.
"Yes, we shall see how well it is running and make sure the workers are quite comfortable," he replied. Carolyn listened to her mother and Barnabas carry on with The Cannery plans. Victoria offered some suggestions along the way. She glanced at David who was also listening but his interest stayed mostly on his food. She looked down at her half-finished plate and then set down her fork. The sound of the metal touching the glass plate made everyone look at her.
"I'm not hungry anymore. I'll be in my room," she announced, getting up and leaving. Nausea was rolling in her stomach as she walked. She knew it was the combination of nerves and the coming of a full moon. She made it back to her room and changed into pajamas. She relaxed on her bed with a heavy sigh. The moon shone through the window, making her skin prickle with anxiousness. The feel of the change was something Carolyn never liked but what came after was nothing but freedom that she embraced. The only problem that arose from her situation was the fear of hurting anyone in any way. Her temper tended to get the better of her and she lashed out. Not to mention anyone around when she ran on a full moon. She had taken to exploring more than the surrounding trees since Barnabas showed up.
He helped her to understand that even though she may hold a very dangerous force within her, she could learn control. Just like Barnabas, who had taken up the art of feeding with no one knowing or dying. Carolyn reached under her pillow and pulled out the silver pendent her mother gave her with a little difficulty; further proof that the moon was close. She held the pendent carefully even though it tingled in her hand. She tucked it back and then got comfortable. That one piece of jewelry was considered harmful to her but she still loved it and wanted to keep it close. It always reminded her of a simpler time before everything changed. School was tomorrow and it brought more work as well as Daniel wanting to hang out with her. Before she let sleep drag her under she finally made the decision to let Daniel closer.
By the next morning, she got up early for a better start at getting to school earlier. As she walked, she wondered what topic would be popular this time. She had to walk because her mother always had Willie out on errands or she herself would be gone. Even early in the morning. Carolyn didn't mind as the walk allowed her time to herself to think. She stopped to watch the school bus turn down a street then continued on. The bus slowly rumbled over and screeched to a stop not too far down the street it had turned into, making her flinch from the harsh sound. When she entered school she got ready to hear the day's gossip behind her back. At times like this she didn't want to have elevated hearing. People's comments only served to agitate her. No whisper escaped her sharp hearing even though the people who talked about her thought it did. The talk mostly revolved around the topic of her family as always.
Few saw 'the creepy man in black' as they called Barnabas, since the disaster with Angelique. Many wondered how Carolyn lived in such a haunted looking house. Others wondered about Carolyn herself, asking each other if she was as strange as the rest of her family or not. She took pride in her silence so as to not offend anyone; she was told not to let her temper get the best of her. She also didn't like sharing any personal subjects with anyone, so hardly anyone knew just how strange she really was. Unfortunately, her silence still made them uneasy; all of them except Daniel of course. There was usually ten minutes before the start of school when she arrived so she started off for her locker to exchange the books she had with the ones she would need for first period. She walked with her head held high and ignored every glance thrown her way.