The amazing and talented fuusunshine has done fan art for this story she drew Ayla with a nod to our boys in the story check it out here

art/Ayla-368076366?q=gallery%3Afuusunshine%2F8950039&qo=0

Sighing Ayla stepped out into the dark streets. It had been a wild night in the ER, a lot of unexplained accidents, people coming in with scratch marks or reports of things falling on them randomly. It was a full moon, and things usually got weird then but this was more so than normal. She shoved her hands into her scrubs pocket. She had become a nurse in the ER a little over 4 years ago and loved every second of it, but somehow tonight she was unsettled. Gazing upward she felt her stomach knot, what was going on?

BAM! Her head snapped back straight ahead, to her surprise she had run right into a man.

"I am sorry sir!" she stammered, surprised. She hadn't seen anyone else on the street a moment ago. Taking in his appearance. Taller than her *and she stood at 5'10"*, Fire engine red hair pulled back into a high ponytail with a white bandana around his forehead. He had on some sort of robe, in all black. His eyes bored into her, questioning.

"You can see me?" He asked a hint of surprise in his deep baritone. Slowly her stomach started to uncurl a bit.

"uhm, yea. Sorry again." she walked quickly away. Crazies hanging out by the hospital were not unusual but this guy didn't seem crazy. Still with that weird get up there was nothing else he could be unless he was on his way to a Halloween party, and it definitely was not Halloween. The unsettled feeling returned to her stomach, and she buried her hands deeper into her pockets.

When she got home she slowly trudged up to her third story apartment and put some tea on. Chamomile tea had a calming effect on her, and the only time the knot in her stomach had loosened up was when she almost ran over that red headed stranger. Shaking her head she went to take a shower while waiting for the tea. Minutes later the woman was sitting at a small table on the balcony listened to the sounds of the city and watching the sky. Her robe loosely around her and dark hair blowing in the wind, for some reason she couldn't shake the weird feeling or the red headed stranger's oddly comforting presence. She knew needed more tea or the nightmares would come.

As I said she's been a nurse for 4 years now. Ayla is 25, graduated nursing school at 21 by the skin of her teeth. You see at 22 she lost her parents, the only family she had. She gritted her teeth and closed her eyes, why did this unease make her always think of that night? It was ruled as homicide, which she thought was too polite a word.

Ayla had wanted to surprise them for their wedding anniversary now that she had a good paying job and could afford a nice gift. She had decided that by saving some money for the first year she would be able to get them something incredible, they had done so much for her and she wanted to do something special for them. A tear leaked down her cheek as she remembered when she knocked the door was open, so unlike them. She let herself in and fell to her knees. The blood was everywhere, her parents dead. Their throats ripped out and their bodies torn to shreds. She barely noticed she dropped their present until she heard it break. It played all over again in her head as she remembered the terror, the unexplainable grief that ripped through her as she took in the scene. Her mom was in the hallway, barely recognizable other than that she was in her work clothes. Her mouth frozen in a scream of terror, hair ripped out of her head and her body looked like someone or something had taken her and just cut her to ribbons. Her father was a mere 100 feet behind her clutching his pistol, whatever it was he had tried to take it down, and had failed. He was sprawled over the back of the couch, his lifeless form dripping blood onto the wooden floor. Ayla fell to her knees and listened.

Drip

Drip

Drip

Sitting there in dumb shock and listened to her father's lifeblood drain slowly from him. She knew they were gone, knew when she called the EMT's there would be no CPR in progress' there was no saving them.

Sighing deeply she drank more of the tea and went into the bedroom. There was only one more thing to try. Reaching into the lockbox where she kept her secrets, photos of her parents, and her pot. They were proud of her when she become a nurse, and she had made sure never to do anything to arouse suspicion that she smoked, after all she had only used pot to shake of the nightmares and never would go to work high. The woman smiled half-heartedly, "I think they would let me slide here" she thought. Lighting the pipe she pulled in a long, slow, stream of smoke. Letting it coil in her lungs for a few moments she slowly exhaled trying to unwind her mind with it.

"mom….dad…I miss you. I love you. Damnnit, I wish you were here." she mumbled softly before crawling into bed.

What she didn't see was a red headed crazy alighting slowly on my balcony and gliding into the apartment.