"Great hate follows with great love."
Briella was walking slowly along the edge of the street sidewalk, gazing up at the trees, their swaying branches mesmerizing her.
"Make sure yeh don' fall, little darling." Dianna warned, glancing at her daughter, "Yeh look strange, too, walkin' that way, you know what I mean like?"
Briella had her arms out, balancing herself as she walked carefully on the edge of the sidewalk while her mother walked on the sidewalk.
She sighed, slowing down a little after nearly tripping on air.
"Mama, what do you think 'bout this?" Briella asked her mother quietly, never removing her gaze from the trees above her.
"LaPush?" Dianna asked, glancing towards her daughter.
Briella frowned, nodding.
Dianna sighed, glancing up towards the sky, "It's good fer yer papa, Briella, it's a good opportunity fer us as well. P'raps we could start anew as a family here, d'you know what I mean like? But I still miss home." Dianna looked up at her daughter, her eyes sad.
Dianna was rarely this emotional; this was as emotional as Briella had ever seen her mother get.
Briella knew that when her mother was this way, it was best not to get teary-eyed and sentimental. Dianna hated crying.
Briella nodded her head in understanding, "P'raps we could go back right after as papa is done here." She suggested, moving over to walk on the sidewalk, beside her mother.
"He'll be done in four more years, lassie, but we'll visit soon, yeah?" Dianna smiled, wrapping her arm around her daughter's shoulder as they sat on an old bench.
They took in the scenery.
The green trees, the damp green grass, the cloudy sunless sky, and the fresh cold air; it was beautiful.
"This is so much like home, really, like." Dianna chuckled softly.
"Sans the sheep of course. You cannot get rid of sheep over at home." Briella added, the mother and daughter sharing a glance before bursting out laughing.
"Yeh know, I'm also hopin' Christina will get h'self a good feen here!" Dianna confessed after wiping the tears from her eyes.
Briella whipped her head around to stare at her mother in surprise.
Dianna simply shrugged shamelessly, "What? I'm a mother, I can hope!"
Briella laughed aloud, her mother joining her.
"But!" Dianna sighed, "Me thinks you'll get one first. My Christi is too strong and witty for some foosherin' knob-head, and heaven knows this world is a-wile wit' them! But you," Dianna looked up at her daughter with pride in her eyes, "You'll get a truly good ride."
"Why do you say that?" Briella asked quietly.
"That's what yeh are, darling! Yeh are truly good lass like! Only a good lass can attract a good feen, and not a knob-head, heaven forbid!"
"I doubt this LaPush High School is full of any 'knog-heads' like!" Briella teased, imitating her mother's exaggerated accent and slang, "So let's pray to Mary I get a good feen like!"
Dianna scowled, knowing well how her daughter wasn't as vulgar as the rest of her family, "Oh, hey, come off it, hi!"
They both stayed silent for a minute, the occasional sound of cars driving by interrupting their peace.
"Mama, d'you s'pose we'll be …safer here?" Briella asked timidly.
Dianna frowned, never removing her gaze from the street before her.
Dianna O'Brien was descendant of a long race of shifters.
But her ancestors 'mixed' with humans, and their children, no longer having the pure talent of shifting into an animal because of the human in them, were possessed every full moon.
Their mind was possessed by an animal.
Shaun, coming from the McGeagh family, held no such talent, along with their eldest child Christina.
Stiofán and Conor were too young to tell if they were to inherit the Gift of the O'Brien, so that left only Dianna and Briella.
If it was strange for the O'Brien gift to come along with a "side-effect", it definitely brought one along when Briella's gift was developed.
Briella had a rheumatic flu when she was six, having her O'Brien gift developed a month after recuperation. A year later, she was diagnosed with a heart rhythm disorder.
And it wasn't pretty.
Depending on the person's mental capacity, the possession wouldn't last too long nor was it too dangerous or serious. But it was always bad no matter what.
In Ireland, Shaun had built cells in their basement to lock Dianna and Briella there every full moon…this possession was sort of like a werewolf transformation sans the hair.
Briella kept her intent gaze on her mother, her face holding the expression a child seeking assurance would have.
Dianna glanced up at her daughter, her heart sincerely hoping everything would turn out alright for her.
"P'raps we'll be okay." Dianna murmured.
A shriek was what awoke the McGeagh house.
Shaun and Dianna leapt out of bed, racing to their bedroom door and sprinting down the hall towards where the scream came from.
Christina and the twins came out of their room and stood in the hall, the three of them in their pajamas, their eyes wide and their faces pale as they tried to imagine what could've happened.
Shaun kicked Briella's door open, "What? What's happened? Where's the trouble?" he demanded upon entering.
Briella was standing on her desk chair, one hand on her chest to calm her beating heart and the other pointing towards the ground, "It crawled under the bed, papa!"
Dianna and Shaun relaxed; relieved to realize it was no real danger, just a bug.
"What the feck are you babbling about?" Christina scowled, angry for having had been frightened, walking into her sister's room just as their mother was helping Briella down.
"I h-h-had just g-gotten out of t-th-the ba-bath-" Briella had began to explain, her racing heart causing her to stutter.
"Yer frightened by a bug, Briella, come off it!" Stiofán snickered from where he stood next to his oldest sister.
"Shh, calm down, darling. Calm down first, I'll squish whatever bug it is and th-" Shaun was interrupted when both Dianna and Briella shrieked, jumping back and holding onto each other.
"Kill it, Shaun!" Dianna screamed as the brown little roach crawled out anxiously from under the bed.
Shaun grabbed the object nearest to him, mercilessly slamming it down onto the poor insect, leaving its colorless guts and antennas squashed on the wooden floor.
"Success!" Shaun beamed up at his frightened wife and daughter. "Oh, thank you, papa!" Briella hugged her father, avoiding the guts on the floor.
"Some brave woman you are!" Shaun teased his wife when she embraced him, feeling her racing heart against his chest.
"Oh blast you to hell!" Dianna scowled, blushing as she playfully swatting her husband's arm, "Stiofán, clean this up. Conor, yeh help yer brother. Let's all just get back to sleep!"
Dianna walked over to her daughter, kissing her head and murmuring, "May the angels guard you."
"May the angels guard you, mama." Briella murmured back.
"I think this was the highlight of my day hi!" Christina chirped sarcastically as she walked out of her sister's room.
"Oh, Christina, you old muppet." Dianna laughed, shaking her head as she and her husband followed their daughter out of the door.
"This is disgusting!" Conor made a face as they wiped the roach off Briella's bedroom floor.
"Thank you, Stiofán. Thank you, Conor, sleep well." Briella kissed each of their heads before leading them out of her bedroom.
"Don't be frightened, 'iella," Conor patted his sister's arm, "Stiofán and I are excellent hunters!"
"Yeah, yer about as useful as a Kerry man with a hurley." Stiofán teased his brother.
"Stiofán!" Briella gasped in surprise before laughing, "Get on, you two, out of my room!" she gently pushed them out of her bedroom.
"G'night!" they both called before going off into their own bedrooms.
As soon as she shut the door of her bedroom, she sat on the small stool in front of her dresser, taking in deep, careful breaths to calm her erratic heart.
She closed her eyes, exhaling before opening her eyes, squaring her shoulders and grabbing the brush and carefully brushing her hair.
She gazed at her reflection, studying her features, her irregular-beating heart swelling in pride at the beauty she inherited from her parents.
She inherited her father's dark hair and her O'Brien grandmother's green eyes, although her skin wasn't as pale as her mother's and Christina's, nor did she have freckles like her brothers, she was beautiful.
Her height was slightly below average, she was 5'3 in height and weighed a healthy 110 pounds.
She turned her head, gazing at her face from that angle.
Out of everyone in her family, Briella was the quiet one. She wasn't defiant and bold like Christina, or loud-mouthed and vicious like her mother, or cool and rational like her father, or mischievous and witty like her twin brothers.
She turned her head to the other side.
Her vocabulary was more of an English type of vocabulary, never using the typical Irish slang her family did; Christina used to tease her about it, calling her a 'cock-up' (which meant 'screw-up' in British slang), telling her that she came out more British than Irish.
Briella turned back to the mirror, smiling fleetingly to her reflection.
Briella was committed and patient, a rare trait in the McGeagh/O'Brien families; although Dianna would say Briella could've possibly gotten it from her great-great-great grandmother Aine O'Brien.
She stood, rubbing her arms as she walked to her window and glanced out.
The shadow of the trees looming over her window were pitch black, frightening but beautiful, so like home.
The wind caressing the tree's leaves howled gently, adding a little eerie effect to the sight of Briella lighting a candle.
She carefully kneeled before her bed, still paranoid and thinking another roach would crawl out any moment.
She inhaled sharply when her knees came to contact with the cold wooden floor but gritted her teeth and focused.
She clasped her hands together and bowed her head, "Watch, oh Lord, with those who wake, or watch, or weep tonight, and give Your Angels and Saints charge over those who sleep. Amen."
She finished her prayer by doing the crucifix sign and kissing index and thumb, blowing the candle out before leaping into her bed, snuggling deep into the blankets as she got comfortable.
She nuzzled her head against her pillow, still smelling of fresh wind and cold air, reminding her of Ireland.
She froze when she heard a distant howl.
She rolled her eyes when she noted how fast her heart was beating, feeling silly for being scared.
"Wolves can't crawl under your bed, Briella!" she scolded herself, closing her eyes and falling asleep, but not before hearing another wolf howl in response to the previous one.
It sounded much closer.