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The Hunters

 
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7/26/2008 19:35:12   
mastin2
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The Hunters




Chapter One:

“Fate starts again”


Blackness replaced with vision; sudden fear overwhelms. A young man looks at his hands and notices they are covered in blood. Looking around dumbfounded, he observes many bodies with claw and teeth marks all over them, and some are nothing but ash. The charred remains of many scar his mind as his eyes water from the deed. His hands are stained; the blood won’t come off. The carnage around him is great; the blood and gore staining and permanently tinting the soil crimson. The carnage consumes him; his fear grows. His heart starts pumping rapidly as his adrenaline skyrockets. No other attackers can be seen alive; only one could have done the act. His mind races; he can barely think.

Panicked and confused, he can only cry out, “My…friends… my…Linda… my…Comrades…My… own little brother, David! All dying or dead! What…have…I…done?!?!?”

He knows it must have been him. No other could cause so much destruction. No other could create so much chaos. No other could completely destroy an army and leave a bloody battlefield behind. No other could leave such a putrid stench of death so powerful as to numb the nose. And he knew it was him. He had not been himself, but he still was responsible for the act. With this knowledge, he takes one of the thin swords that are shining from a woman lying on the ground, and he stabs himself in the heart. Everything goes dark…


Three-Hundred Years Later:

Ben D. Lewis walks down to the car, an old suburban, observing with his hazel eyes the rusted white paint. He knows the car was recently washed, so looks at his average length brown hair in the reflection of the white section of the paint, polished by him and a few others for a small fee. He stares at the side for several seconds, taking no note of the broken carrier on the top. “Well, Ben, do you think you’re ready to drive it all the way home yet?” a middle-aged woman asks in a concerned tone as she stares at his eyes.

“Any day, mother!” he enthusiastically responds with a great confidence that few can muster. His mother smiles at this comment, for the first time in a while permitting him to take the driver’s seat. He takes the key and turns the car on, putting it into reverse. He it’s the accelerator to push the car back and steers using the wheel to the best of his ability. He smiles with the end result; he now faces the exit away from the parking that had held his car hostage all day,

At this, they start the twenty minute drive home from his school in the city of Bellevue. While he lived a decent distance from the school, it was nothing to him. There, he is a star for his great talents as an athlete, a visionary who most see great potential in, and the fact that he is one of the top three students in all of the grades the school offers, two through ten. With such a variety in age and about four-hundred students to sift through, it is a feat which he knows makes his parents proud.

Taking turn after turn, Ben is confident that he is becoming a great driver. Nothing will stop his determined attitude, and his sheer will to drive successfully keeps any potential crashes from happening. About half way through—after turning onto Stormy Lakes Road, which is famous for the three lakes that seem to produce storms—he brings up “And how many times do I have to tell you…though that is my birth name, the name I go by is Bri!”

His mother simply replies with a slight smile, waving her long black hair, “Until you can change your name legally two years from now, I’m still going to call you Ben! I don’t care what you and your friends call you, but I will never stop calling you that.”

‘Bri’ quietly mutters in an annoyed tone that seems to be more of an oath than an empty threat, “Very soon, I’ll stop responding to that name all together.” Arriving at home—a one and a half story house on a forty-five degree slanted hill, hidden almost completely by beautiful healthy green evergreens—Bri enters his house. He once again went past the family pond and going through what remains of the Lewis’s once great garden—now overgrown with weeds—and paid them no heed. Upon the slamming of the door behind him, he immediately drops himself into his bed, which, after a left turn, is only a hallway down. Once again, he is annoyed, however, at the fact that the average wooden door guarding his bedroom has been left open by his brother. He closes it on the way in, ignoring the creaking from the hinges in need of oiling.

“What a day!” he exclaims, happy that he is doing so well. Bri attributes some of his success to his old flashdrive—which, despite age, never fails him and holds his electronic work—his 2-liter bottle of water, which helps him get through every day sports, his black jacket which seems to never make him feel too hot or cold, and lastly to his blue mechanical pencil and white click eraser. Both of the latter two may not be unique, but certainly are rare and not used by many others. However, that does not mean they do not have their unique attributes, even amongst their kind, since they were customized by Bri himself to remind him of an earlier event in his history.

After 6:00, while it is still light out, dinner is served, and it is pizza. Bri devours it in five minutes and decides to get some sleep. Waking up at seven, he looks outside his window through his old dusty fan. He has owned that fan for so many years that the dust gathered on it is as thick as a paint job on a car. Similarly, he is somewhat amazed that still blows cold air in through the open window. His reverie over, he gets out of his bed. He drops his light-blue blanket on the way up, figuring he’ll put them back on once he’s done. After taking this note, he peers out of the window, curious to what could have made him think to do it.

It seems like something was watching him, and, as he thinks about it, there appeared to have been someone watching him all day…during school, and even on the way home. While disturbed by this, Bri really has nothing better to do. After retrieving his blanket, he sits down on his bed once again, briefly staring at the slowly degrading blue sheets that cover his place of rest every night. After this, he stares at the white ceiling and allow his mind to wander. For some unknown reason that astounds him, however, he remembers that the next day is the full moon. “My mind really works in an enigmatical way,” he thinks out loud. “Why on earth would I remember that? I forget when to watch my favorite shows all the time, yet remember something like that.” Tomorrow would bring some sort of new him, but unlike what he normally thinks, this time it would be more literal. By midnight—though a little early for his tastes—he is asleep and well. But in the morning, however, he would be different…




As morning comes, Bri feels some sudden drastic changes in him…he seems to be losing control. Sure, he knows that he’s had his fits of temper in the past. But those were years ago. He had since learned self-control even when extremely angry at nearly anyone. Even when faced with extreme rage, he still keeps his cool. But an unprovoked loss of control the moment he gains consciousness? This is not something that should be humanly possible, to his knowledge, but he knows that these changes are bad and, hence, a problem.

He can’t help but noticing his hands are changing, as his hands begin to turn from his normal tan to a darker color. And that effect is spreading, heading further and further up his arms. His veins are glowing black and blue, and they are beginning to show clearer and clearer. The oddly-colored, closer to the surface than normal veins also appear to be slowly spreading, crawling like an infection up his arm, the change consuming him.

His right hand has begun to grow in size and his left hand’s long nails seem to be getting even longer, sharper, and much harder. It does not take a genius to realize that something is terribly wrong, and that this could kill him. No human should have to endure this, yet it is happening. Something thought truly impossible is happening and he has no idea. Briefly, the thought of werewolves that Bri amuses himself in studying come to mind, but he pushes those thoughts aside for the more urgent matter at hand. To him, after all, werewolves are just a myth.

“What…is…happening to me?!?” Bri, panicking, asks himself. Realizing the comment was out loud, he looks around, finding his brother still asleep—as usual, he had likely stayed up too late. While he had seemed to be losing control before, it was just a feeling; the only signs were that he was having trouble breathing and could barely think. But at the time, he still was in control. Now, however, he feels like something is taking over, or, at least, he is being suppressed.

Beginning to actually lose control and fearing for his family’s safety, Bri runs out the door after unlocking it, racing for the forest. No one in the family notices because Bri gets up before everyone else in the family, at 5:20 in the morning. Occasionally, his brother will stay up all night to do ‘schoolwork’, but almost always on the weekends, when the day before and the current time was and is still a school day.

Whatever is happening, it is slowly increasing his physical abilities, at the cost of extreme pain and, worse than any other part, lack of control. Instincts are kicking in, and things like the birds in the sky are beginning to look appetizing. His emotions seem more wild and out of control than he can ever remember, and for a brief second, he almost swears that his eyes turn yellow, but then return to normal. Something is trying to push his consciousness into the back of his head, and that thing has the tint of evil in it. One thought, he knows, is currently dominating what he is thinking about, so he tries to keep it on top. “Just run. Run as fast as you can to try and cause no soul any harm. This change is bad, but it may not be permanent…try to control yourself for a few hours.” The though continues on after a while, him muttering it a dozen times. “You are strong, Bri. You can run, no matter what. You can do this. You can suppress whatever force tries to harm you. You can do it. You can do it. You can win. You can win. You can win.”

But all of a sudden, Bri felt a strong voice in his head. This voice is not that of any being alive, but it is deep within his soul and obviously evil. The voice demands submission, and is slowly forcing Bri away. Thinking, he remembers how he had always had a voice in his head, but nothing like this. Nothing so powerful had ever plagued him before. And the voice had always been pleasant, never evil. It had been a light, normal, and happy voice, so the change startles him. The increasingly strong dark and evil thoughts grow in power, a second will within propelling him forward.

Suddenly, the voice booms “Let me take control!”

“Never! Not while you intend to harm my family!” Bri angrily replies, since, for reasons he can’t comprehend, knows it is true. Bri can’t help but feel that this evil is unnatural, but the fact that it is so strong means that it does not take long for Bri to pry out the suspicion that this is not the voice normally. Something about it seems different than he feels it should be. But at the moment, he feels, it would destroy him. Maybe not on later days, but on this day, he knows if he submits, then he will be destroyed and transformed into a beast, good for nothing but killing. I just get the feeling that, if I were to submit today, I would never come back. It would permanently take control of me and I would cease to be. So I must fight it, just for today.

“You might have doomed us both! We are stronger when I control you. I’ll take over one of these days, and you will cease to exist!” the voice responds, clearly enraged. This confirms Bri’s fears, but even if the being taking over is good for most of the year, the days that it would be evil would most likely destroy him, as the voice has promised.

After running miles upon miles, with unusually high speed, he finally comes to rest as the night begins to set in, still fighting the voice in his head. He experiments with a little nightshade, finding that, while it could kill him, it does help. Bri swears intently, “I will not let him take control! Not even when there’s no one left to harm!” He is getting tired, and the forest is resting. As night settles in and the world prepares for darkness, everything, save the creatures of the night, sleeps. And his body seems in tune with the forest; his body seems to wish for sleep. While this goes against what he’d think of wolves—the thought again coming to him from earlier—as they hunt mainly at night, he accepts it and then hides himself in some bushes, finally going to sleep.




Waking up in the morning, Bri feels much better and the voice seems to have subsided…for the moment. He quite enjoys the fresh early morning air, taking in the cold air through his nose. The refreshingly cool air seems to temporarily put his mind to ease; he allows himself to relax a little. The birds chirping don’t seem to be triggering his appetite anymore; at least he doesn’t feel like a snack. He is relieved to look at his body to see it perfectly normal; his nails are back to normal, his veins are normal, his first is normal, and his skin is normal. Though, even so, he still feels a little different. But the innocent aura in the damp morning air puts his fears away.

This feeling of pure innocence lasts for a while, that is, until the voice in his head worryingly yells, “RUN!” This does not seem like the same type of response from the day before. And the voice seems different as well. Obviously, the higher pitched tone and worry in the voice is different than the day before and seems to be genuinely afraid of whatever threatens them.

But in fact, the voice seems to be speaking more out of worry for Bri than itself. “Why?” Bri confusingly questions, “I see no reason to.”

“Use your instincts, idiot! They are more than they were before! Oh, right…you didn’t even realize that, did you? No matter; you’ll pick it up eventually. But, for now, let me be blunt. You are in grave danger…I sense something coming, and there’s a good chance they are not just here to help!”

Bri doubts this concern, but continues running, running, and running. The voice may not be concerned for Bri, but the worry in its tone certainly suggests that the threat is real. Trying his luck, Bri concentrates, sensing a strange feeling similar to the presence of humans. For some reason, his memories seem stronger than before, and seem to have been enhanced with increased smell and hearing. Though, to his knowledge, he is not dieing, it is as if he is experiencing his life flashing before his eyes. He remembers events he forgot about years ago and those events which he has drilled into his mind seem to have been enhanced. He remembers the taste of food he hasn’t had for over ten years, but finding it meaningless, pushes the thought aside.

Running may not be enough, however, as Bri finally manages to sense they are surrounding him. His earlier enhancements don’t seem to appear, yet they are clearly in effect. Adrenaline wouldn’t get his legs even close to the speed they now run at, flying through the lush green forest attempting to outrun the distant cries of danger. He can smell the sweat from his fear on his body. The liquid beads slowly engulf him as his speeds increase. He can smell them as well, now. The smell of human scents around him. They are barely discernable from the smell of the green plants around him, but the plants only leave a smell of ‘fresh’; the plants smell nice and remind him of mint. But the human scent seems to be that of death. It clogs his nose up as he runs, knowing that they are near and getting closer.

“It’s not good enough!” the panicked voice shouts. “We can’t escape by just running…we need strategy, something I’m not good at!” it finishes.

“Well, what do you suggest we do?” Bri, with a slight tint of mocking, asks.

“Think about it, Bri…I know our powers better than you, and I’ve been with you all your life, so I know you’re much smarter than me…Right now, it would weaken us for me to force control, and even if I were to control our shared body, I’d need you. While I can call upon any one of your traits, memories of the layout of the land, strategies, and all of that, it would do me little good. Just guide me, and I’ll protect us while you dig for the ability to control our powers. I actually would prefer not to control your body for too long, as you aren’t used to lack of control and I’m not used to control, so make your studies quick!”

“I get the idea!” Bri quickly finishes, allowing himself to lose control, with one last question… “This may be a stupid question, but…why are you helping me now? Last night, you were threatening me with destruction and things I will not describe.”

“What did I say again? Oh, right…that. Sorry ‘bout those actions, so I guess I owe you an explanation. Well, simply put, for one thing, if you die, I die, so there’s always survival. But don’t get the wrong impression of me…I have less selfish reasons…Last night was the full moon, a time when I loose all sense and go insane. I swear to you that it was nothing but an exception, not the rule. I do wish nothing but to help you, and hopefully do some good.” Bri is watching from subconscious, asking questions about his powers and digging for what the voice fails to explain, as to create a strategy. He quickly leans that he has extreme strength, and speed, his right hand is even more powerful this way. The lack of control over his body is disturbing, but he finds that not being in control allows him to think harder.

“Give me some time to think of a pattern to get out of here with the least amount of harm to them…I do imagine they have not mastered this terrain, and despite being surrounded, there must be a gap.”

“Alright. Mutual trust seems like a must here. Keep on thinking, Bri, and develop a strategy. Tell me what to do for you and I’ll get it done. When you are confident you can fend for yourself against whatever these people are, I’ll let you handle things. But if you say ‘I’m ready’, you better be ready.”

“Don’t worry. While I don’t exactly trust you, I do believe you want to help for the moment. So the only reason that I’d have to lie is because I want control over my body again. But it’d only get me killed if I rush.”

While still forming a strategy and learning about his powers, the two then encounter a young woman, wearing some light armor and holding a revolver. Her fierce attitude shows no emotions and she seems ready to kill at the drop of a coin. Bri, with a frighteningly loud voice, demands “Duck!”

Of course, the entity now controlling his body uses a voice projecting glee to reply, “So you are getting better! Though I think that ducking would be obvious!” Bri’s body ducks, barely avoiding a shining silver bullet and it is obvious that the one controlling his body can maintain an atmosphere almost free from harm.

“Try not to cause so much damage,” Bri asks, showing sympathy to his enemies.

“As you wish, I’ll try. But keep in mind, this is not my specialty! My specialty is in fighting to survive. Which usually means killing my opponent so they cannot harm me.” The entity obviously does not wish for any of this, and extends claws from his left hand, slashing at his foe’s face. This sudden action causes her to hit the ground stunned, but no permanent damage is done. Bri observes this and takes note that these abilities seem strangely familiar to something he had once known about, but pushes that thought aside. Even with enhanced thoughts and even better memories, he needs every scrap of brain power to formulate a strategy to survive and to learn of his strength.

Isolating the thought from his counterpart, Bri assures himself, “Such thoughts cannot help me, so I need to concentrate on more important matters.”

“Have you learned enough about your powers to try and take control?” the being asks, and finishes, “I am not sure how much more of this I can take. Now find is a way out of here!”

“I have! Just release your control and I’ll guide us to freedom.”

“Very well…Good luck!” at these words, Bri takes control again and with his erratic maneuvering, manages to evade these strange people, whose numbers seem many. “There is a lot more to this than there appears to be…” Bri thinks to himself.

However, a little bit of intrusion allows his friend to listen; he is overheard by his friend, as he replies, “That is true, but alas, not even I know what is really going on.” They continue running, with hopes that they can have time to rest and think about this issue. Their pursuers continue to come, and it is only a matter of time before they would catch up again. Bri solemnly wishes that he could find out every single detail of this situation, as someone with half his IQ can figure out that there is more to the situation than meets the eye.

“Do you know a good place to hide?” the being asks, wishing to find a safe haven from whoever is pursuing them.

“Bellevue has a surprisingly many amount of hiding places…I’m heading there now.” Using his new-found speed, he rushes through many trees and runs parallel to the highways, always staying out of sight. He gets there quickly, and only when he finds a good hiding spot, a trench, does he feel an intense shot of pain in his leg.

“Silver…be lucky you are mostly human…if you hadn’t been at least half human right now, that little would in your leg could have been much worse, possibly lethal. It would have killed me if I were in control, so it’s good we switched when we did.”

“So I noticed!” Obviously, the silver has to be removed, since it continues to burn Bri’s joint in unimaginable pain. Bri, under no circumstances, is a medic, but it’s not exactly like he can walk into a hospital and declare, ‘I’ve been shot by this strange woman in a forest many miles away, so can you remove the silver bullet in my leg?’ It would be an extremely bad idea, leaving Bri to remove it himself.

“Alright…I’ll try to prevent you from noticing the pain so you can concentrate when in the process of removal. Me being in the back of your head, I imagine I can trigger a few switches and prevent some pain. After that, I’ll try directing as much as I can bear into me.”

Bri—using his left hand’s claws, which he can now extend and retract freely—tears the bullet out, resisting the urge to cry out in pain. It is not the delicate procedure he had planned, but his friend had accidentally influenced him to be more ‘direct’, in the hopes that one shot of pain would be better than gradual pain. Bri is clearly annoyed at this, but the entity inside of him insists that they are equally responsible and shared an equal amount of pain. However Bri mutters, “Funny…I didn’t hear you cry out in pain.”

The entity defends itself by insisting, “Hey, I’m stronger than you!” After this, Bri and his entity decide it is best to get some sleep to recover from his wounds. The trip to his hiding spot may not have taken that long, but it had taken long enough for the sun to be setting at the end of the operation.

“We can think about this, and all of the things we may need to clarify, tomorrow,” Bri finishes to his friend.

The last thing heard before going to sleep is, “Not to mention, to train as well. We need the experience!” Bri laughs at this, as he agrees, and within five minutes, would appear to any citizen to be as asleep as a graveyard.




The next day, they again wake up to danger. The full force from before is less than five-hundred feet from them, and who knows what they plan to do? Even if they are there to help, it is unlikely Bri would like their ‘help’. His abilities would likely catch their attention, and it doesn’t matter if they hunt him forever; escape is a must. “We might be getting better, but even we can’t defeat them all! They are too close for us to run and get away, as I think this very well may be their home turf,” the entity cries out in terror.

“We have no choice…I can control my powers well now—my left claws and right hand’s strength. Plus, I’m experimenting with my strength with my eraser, pencil, flashdrive, water bottle, and my armor of a jacket. Sure, the knowledge of how to use them is just theoretical. But I may, just may, be able to use them as a defense and counter-attack. When we get moving, I’ll tell you my plan and then let you do some work on the details. We’ll be able to fight, so now it comes down to where do we make our stand? We’ll need a defendable location to stall for enough time to escape.”

“Though I know our powers well, even I do not know their limits. I wish you luck. I’ll help in any way I can, but you know that, in the end, you’ll be practically alone in this conflict. I can take control if you wish, but who is controlling your body makes no difference in its abilities. How they are used, sure, but you said you studied well and I believe you.”

At this, Bri runs away, but is beginning to get surrounded. Again. But this time, it’d be worse. This time, it would be far worse than what he had experienced. He knows this, and is preparing the best he can, so takes advantage of every little detail. The day before had been the last day of school for the week, which he had missed because of running from these hunters. It is Saturday, so school isn’t in. Bri explains the details to his friend on his plans and proceeds to run into the location where he hopes he has the greatest advantage.

Bri’s school. If they fail to spot him, it would hide his presence. He flees inside, hoping to elude them for just that much longer. “The south side of the building has the most exits, so we’ll prepare right there, and hope they did not notice us entering this building.” The preparation is nothing more than Bri testing his limits in a basic warm-up, though his largest strength, his largest hope, his largest advantage and chance of survival, is that they didn’t see him entering, and cannot sense his presence.

But it is too late. The hunters barge in with their crossbows, swords, and revolvers in hand, immediately rushing towards Bri. They are on all sides of the building and they now point at least two dozen weapons at him, ready to fire. Already, a good portion of the exists will not be reachable. Bri has no choice. He takes out his claws and grows his fist. “I don’t suppose we can talk?” Bri cheerfully asks, in a desperate attempt to stop the conflict. It briefly seems to work; they seem a little stunned, but soon after, they attack ferociously.

“Nope. You’d have better luck talking to a wall!” the entity happily answers for them, as Bri dodges set after set of attacks. Yet still, arrows, bolts, and bullets start flying towards him. And a constant barrage from all directions eventually will score hits.

He knows this and prepares for the worst. Bri dodges, but can’t avoid all of the volleys, and some hit him. Most bounce off his shirt, but a few left manage to puncture his defense. He is quite amazed that they aren’t hitting each other, but this is obviously a coordinated attack, so that could explain their sharp-shooting. As soon as a few of them get too close, he retaliates.

He punches, but refuses to use his claws to kill them and that’s assuming he’s able to. While in a one-on-one fight, he is almost guaranteed to win, with so many around, such a result is improbable. These people are tough, and apparently, they will show no mercy, fighting him until they win. An arrow pierced the middle of his left hand in the last assault, preventing him from using it all together, and Bri knows that this is really, really bad. His right hand is his only defense, and he is forced to send a few men flying back with a series of powerful punches. “Despite how they’re trying to kill us, they are still human…I refuse to kill them,” Bri stubbornly explains to his friend inside, before the question that he knows would be asked.

“I understand, and I actually agree, but you realize that your stubbornness may get us killed.”

“I have to try, and you know it. Should I try unleashing that technique I excavated?”

“Better than nothing. Take the exit that is up there; it may be our only way out.”

Running yet again, he heads to the secondary exit but is blocked by a new arrival to the scene. The same poor woman they had injured earlier is there, standing in their way. The scratch from before still burns fresh, and Bri feels a little bad for being responsible for such harm. Instinct takes over, which seems like a combined effort of the two. This technique would let him get through, but the repercussions may be terrible. He shoots a lightning blast out of his right fist at the young woman, quietly muttering, “Sorry!” as he runs over her to exit.

The rest of the group is running at full speed and are holding thin swords aimed at him, so he knows he has to stun them somehow. Wielding his pencil and eraser in his big hand, he again shoots, but this time creating a blue lightning bolt and a black shot, wounding more pursuers. Yet some still chase after him. “Not good. Forgive me, people, but I shall not let you kill me.” His situation has improved, but not nearly enough to be considered positive.

Bri had already proceeded to leap over the woman, who was just stunned and would be up a few seconds later. Convinced the entire hunting party is inside, he runs, jumping onto a tall building. Several times, he leaps the distance between buildings, but only so far. While he needs to escape, he knows that, in his exhausted state, he’ll only go so far. “Just one building further,” his voice mutters, hoping to encourage Bri to go just that much farther before collapsing.

He is limping, and only manages to leap over a few more buildings before entering a building and hiding in a closet. His energy is spent and his wounds are great enough to overload him. He has tried, but failed to do anything significant. It’d only be a matter of time until they found him, and it’d all be over. With great fear, he begins to lose consciousness, and his voice can only mutter, “Don’t fall asleep now!” but he can’t fight any more. He is defeated, and he knows it.

His heart rate had been rapid. It had been beating so fast that he could hear and feel it. The constant thumps had kept him fighting and running. His ears stop hearing the thumps. He stops being able to clearly feel his heart rate. It has slowed drastically. In the small, isolated closet, the only smell is his sweat dripping over his body from fear and exhaustion. “Sorry. I…” he falls asleep, not able to finish, and senses his foes slowly approaching.

The last words he hears are, “Please! You must.” Those words, he knows, may be the last he’ll ever hear…




3 days earlier, in the forest next to the Lewis’s house:

Julie had been having a bad day of hunting. At first, she had been miserable in the forest assigned to watch the house of the Lewis’s, just because of some stupid ancient history. Despite being one of only two direct descendant of the last surviving Werewolf slayer, she had been assigned a mission worthy of a first generation slayer, and she was miserable. Her short brown hair was soaked and her green eyes were getting tired. But being the night before the full moon, this was a vital mission, as well as one of her first. Being at her state, she had to make a good impression.

The weight of her clothes was three times the average, since they were simply drenched. Her chilled skin could feel the water through her layers. Her heavy clothes are bothersome to her. The smell of the forest is somewhat nice to her, but seems a bit too relaxing for her preference. The forest environment seemed to choke out the breath from her and the warm air conflicted heavily with the ice cold rain. The moisture around her was simply unbearable. Yet she had to. She breathed in through her nose—despite how the smell combined with the heat made the breaths erratic—and out through her mouth. “I hate this states’ weather.” But this was a vital mission, and she had no choice. The fact that this mission was labeled the highest of the high, despite appearing to be simple recon, worried her greatly, and the weather didn’t help.

To make things worse, she got careless enough to have possibly been spotted! After her older sister came, she was finally allowed to sleep, but only for a few hours. A few hours may have actually made her worse—less sleep can be worse than none at all—but at least it was a relief at the time. After her short little nap, she awoke to see her sister standing over her, staring intently at the window above that held the whole purpose for the misery that every soul there is suffering.

“Don’t you sense it?” her sister had asked shortly thereafter, which, by now, was the next day. “There is a presence stronger than any reported for well over a hundred years!” her sister eagerly finished with a tint of fear and excitement. Fear from possible power contained within. Excitement for the thrill of what could come. But, Julie sensed, there could have been more to her excitement than what she showed.

Obviously, the fear and respect the rest of the order had for the danger that may lie within there was too great for words and Julie knew that at least half of the members nearby might not last five minutes when face to face with him. “Did the reinforcements come?” Julie had then asked, hoping to lighten the mood.

“Yes, but they aren’t right here…they are surrounding the area, just in case this full moon triggers that poor boy’s gene. I actually pity him a little, and if it were to happen, it is our duty to save him.” However, ‘save’ has a slightly different definition for them, and would not be viewed as a rescue to any other person.

They did not have to wait long. At 5:20 am, the boy got up, but Julie sensed he had changed, and that his monster within was preparing to kill all who he loved. “We can wait no longer, sis! We must go in!” Julie yelled, as she rushed to the front door. But after going in, she found the boy they were after, ‘Bri’ D. Lewis, had escaped.

Julie was frustrated, but her sister comforted her, “Don’t worry…we shall find that evil beast, and bring it down! For the safety of the people. He’s already turned, so there’s nothing we can do about it. Except save him. He can’t escape us; he can only hide! By my honor, the leader of the hunters, we shall bring him down!” Julie smiled at the appearance of her sister, as she knew just how tough she can be at times.

Underneath, her caring side is there, but has been submerged by her duty, and it comes out only when giving ‘mercy’…if this boy would be no different than the rest of the cases, then mercy—to Julie—would be an accurate word. However, if he was somehow different, then they could just have killed a valuable resource. Julie pushed such thoughts away, true as they might have been, because she now needed to concentrate on her own task.

They continued searching through the night, but found nothing. This was not their home turf, as they specialize in city hunting. Not to mention, he had hidden well, as he knew the terrain better than them, so the search would end up useless. Of course, they wouldn’t give up so easily, and luckily, the boy the night before had been to busy concentrating on other things to notice them.

In the morning, they found that he had ceased to hide himself and they surrounded him, but still were not visible. However, whatever had kept him from sensing them yesterday had been overcome, as he knew they were there without being able to see them, so he ran strait towards the barricade. Julie knew that, if they played their cards correctly, he would be theirs. Julie was unfortunate enough to be the first to contact him. In her mind, the thought of, “It’s as we feared; this young man has been engulfed! It’s a shame.” came up.

She began to pull out her pistol, an old 6-shot revolver, loaded with silver bullets. “Aim for the neck, heart, or head,” she had learned from her sister, so she shot, with great speed, at his head, but he dodged. That was to be expected, but she had not expected him to have done it so skillfully. To make it worse and furthering the humiliation, he scratched her in the face. This was not her idea of a good day. She had been so stunned; she had let him get by. She cursed at her carelessness, as she had been expected to be one of the most promising, yet had messed up…again.

Julie, at this moment, thought she felt something, but pushed the feeling aside. “We must kill him!” That one thought was the only thing that kept her thoughts occupied, or at least, the only thought she wanted to. This was not the kind of thing that she wished to do, but his actions would condemn him to the blade of the slayers. Her heart raced as she tried to catch up, yet all was hopeless, and he somehow managed the maneuver through their grasp. The thrill of the hunt kicked in, and she along with her fellow slayers pursued the target, never stopping for a break.

She later learned that the beast seemed like thinking of a clever, bold, foolish, and unusual strategy that had never been seen before, something that shocked her sister, and managed to run away. But using slightly enhanced speed, everyone managed to pursue, though not catch, their enemy. The trail that he was leaving, however, not only revealed where he was heading; it also revealed he was wounded with a silver bullet. “What IS he?” thoughts began to pop up in her head, as the feeling of this boy was different from all before him. Silver is supposed to kill her prey, even with just a flesh wound, but something was keeping him alive and well.

The next day, they arrived in Bellevue and immediately picked up a trail of blood, with some hints of silver in it, and traced it down to a school. Her suspicions about his wound were correct, and now they were certain to get him…they were now on their home turf, and practically unstoppable in comparison to a wounded monster. However, the location he had chosen was what the problem was, and Julie recognized it…that had been her school for five years. Another worrying though that pops up is how ‘Wounded beasts are the most dangerous of all’, but this would mean nothing. Her rage was great enough to nearly have an emotional outburst.

“How dare this, this…Thing hide in here!?” That enraged though was what completely engulfed her senses, but despite her anger, strange thoughts concerning that man’s innocence kept popping up. Continuing with the dozens of hunters they had with them, Julie and her sister cornered him inside. Julie took the secondary exit to ensure that he would be caught, the hunter’s trust in her skill and ability to nearly never lose to the same opponent twice great enough to not give her backup. “This time, I will not let him through!” she thought with great determination.

Everyone who fought him noticed something that did surprise them…Silver was not working as well as it should have and he seemed to be quite logical, in control, and generally, good a not killing them with masterfully placed blows that knocked the wind out of them. His attacks seemed like they were purposely meant to be ineffective, and nothing but a stall tactic. “What could this monster be thinking?” The biggest surprise of all, however, is when he asked if they could talk! No, he could not be the beast that Julie had imagined; things just did not add up. She could now only barely sense a presence in him, and his innocence seemed convincing. It was decided by her sister that instead of killing him, they would bring him to their cell. “Something is different about him, though, sadly, my mission is still the same…He cannot escape!” No matter who he was—even if the mission no longer was to kill him—he could not be allowed freedom and would be captured…alive. For some reason, Julie actually felt a little relief, but again suppressed such emotions, as they would only weaken her reflexes.

But the boy still continued his surprises, amongst them the fact that he hadn’t shown signs of much pain and was still in human form. “Why, if he has lost control, is he still in human form? He obviously still has his powers and isn’t confused at all, meaning he shouldn’t be the one in control!” No pain despite numerous silver wounds, human form, and seemingly complete control over his actions. Yet he can’t be human, as his powers prove that. And a human would just be confused by all of this, yet he seems on top of things. To top it all off, he shot an electrical blast at her, bringing her to the floor stunned. He actually muttered, “Sorry”, then, despite the clear injuries in his hand, shot a lightning bolt and some sort of black shot at her comrades from a pencil! Not surprisingly, this also stunned them. At least she wouldn’t be alone in her humiliation, but hers would be greater than the rest. She had let him slip again, so she stood up once again, trailing the increasingly heavy trail of blood that she knew was her target.

After recovering from this, Julie’s sister observed, “He is most unusual…perfect control, good manners, control over lightning and darkness, great resistance to silver, and probably a lot more. He defies everything we currently know about our prey.” They continued hunting, but he still ran. His running was futile, as in his weakened state, they quickly found him, cowering in a closet with great fear, losing consciousness. He passed out just as Julie took a good look at his face, only now showing fear and horror beyond her dreams. The face looked like that of one afraid he was going to die and that of one wanting to fight, but knowing the end is near.

She, in all her experience, had never seen such a face and it seemed to hint the young man’s inner feelings. But fortunately for him, they were not there to kill him. For once. “KC, please take care of this man’s wounds…he just might prove interesting, and could just save us all.”

“Err…yes, ma’am! I’ll see to it at once!” A young man—one of the few in the group—responded.

“Are you actually going to help him, sis?” Julie asked.

“I don’t think we have a choice. Those rumors mean he could be…” She decided not to finish, as it would be unnecessary. Though officially, the reason they were doing it was because they were confused…They, at the very least, needed some answers…




Bri wakes up again, this time in a sealed room, with two of his former foes in front of him. “Where am I?” he asks in a slightly drowsy voice, as he had just gotten up from a sleep for who knows how long. His breath is still heavy. His heart rate is high again; he knows that he is experiencing great fear. He can feel the hair rising on his skin from the eerie chill he senses from the two figures in front of him.

The obviously younger one simply replies, “At our base, which is a secret location. We cannot tell you that kind of info, and have no intentions of letting you go.”

“Why…did you save me?” Bri, before anyone responds, randomly remembers some things he thought he never knew…most are unimportant, some are details about his powers, and he now knows that his entity’s name is David…such random thoughts are confusing, but must have come to him when he finally calmed down sometime in his sleep. But most unnerving of all—he can’t feel David. “David! Where are you? I…can’t feel you!” he tries crying out, but his head is silent.

The younger one begins to look a little uneasy at Bri’s sudden change when Bri tries to reach his entity, but answers, “Because we may need you. I am Julie, and this is my older sister, Katie.”

“Nice to meet you, again…I guess…” Bri responds softly, as he braces for possible repercussions for the ‘I guess’. “I’m Bri.”

“We know, we know. We wouldn’t be good at our job if we didn’t. I suppose you’d be interested to meet a few of our members,” Katie informs him, snapping her fingers and having a response of a few members walking in.

After a few more introductions, Bri recognizes many of the members of the ‘Werewolf Slayers’, also called Hunters. KC was an old friend from his school since he was ten and even the name Julie rings a bell to him. He can almost put a finger on it, but the name doesn’t seem to be comprehendible…almost as if the memory is being blocked. He ignores such thoughts and is at least happy to see faces he has known since he was many years younger. However, he has no time to ponder such things as he carefully is forced to choose his words well by questions to come.

“Tell me, Bri, did you have any intention of killing your family that day?” Julie simply asks, showing a look that Bri takes as an attempt to be intimidating, failing miserably.

“I, myself did not.” Bri still tries, but it is obvious something’s not right with David…He notices that there’s a mark in his arm and that reaching him is near impossible. Something must have been injected to make David’s voice disappear, and whatever it is, Bri does not like it, as he now relies on David. He saved his life; it is unfathomable to think that he’d never get to return the favor.

Julie asks, again with a slight frown on her face, as if she felt something, “Then who was?”

“I think you already know the answer to that!” Bri cries out, pointing to the mark. He has given up on contact, so his patience runs a little low. He stands up and slams his hand into the table, showing his clear agitation at the question. Oops. That was careless of me, He silently curses to himself as he sits calmly back into his chair.

“That should keep that monster at bay long enough for us to ask more questions,” Julie, clearly with anger at the beast, explains, and also adds, “But we want to know more about this thing…Tell us, now!”

“I wish I could, but right now, I can’t…Can I talk to Julie alone for a while?” The request confuses both, but what will make him talk will make him talk, and their curiosity is now too great to just back down, so Katie reluctantly accepts.

“Sure! Julie, this should be easy for you!” Katie then leaves the room, also shutting off the security camera’s sound, as she respects this strange guest of theirs. Though video is still on, as she is not willing to risk her sister to that man, armed or not. “I sense something extremely different about him, so be careful, sis. You’re all I have left.” Once both Bri and Julie are at an uneasy peace, they finally continue the conversation with some hesitance on Bri’s part.

Bri finally explains to her, “The ‘thing’ inside of me actually is a good person, but on that day, he lost control…If I didn’t have that…whatever it was, in me, he could help out. I simply can’t fully explain what happened myself, but he might clarify a thing or two.” Bri motions to his arm and Katie from outside is quite puzzled, though she still leaves the conversation alone.

“Very well…if you insist, I can temporarily remove it.” Julie pulls out a tube, removes a silver-green mixture, and then deposits it in her pocket.

“Ah, much better!” David’s weak voice cries out to Bri.

“Now, what is he exactly?” Julie, clearly running out of patience, inquires.

“It would be a baaaad idea to tell her, right now, Bri. We can’t trust them, and she, along with her sister, has a very unusual feeling! They tried to kill us not two days ago, well, from our memory, two days ago! Please say you won’t tell her!” David, who, though not physically visible, would clearly show panic on his face, as it showed badly in his voice.

“Alright. I won’t tell her. But what do we tell her?” Bri silently responds, but David does not have time to give a response.

Julie takes a blade from her pocket, and puts it right next to Bri’s throat and demands, “Tell me, now!” From outside, Katie can’t help but giggle at her sister’s aggressive behavior, as she rarely acts that way.

Bri submits, and says, “Forgive me, David, but it’s not exactly like I have any choice but to answer! These walls prevent us from using our powers!”

“Ah, so he is in there after all! Now would you be so kind as to explain yourselves?” Julie asks. David simply sighs, finally overcoming his strong instincts against the action, says reluctantly, “Bri, go ahead…I don’t want that dagger to get any closer to your throat than you do.”

With David’s formal permission, Bri then explains, “He might have started it all, but was not in control. I fought him until the next day, when he had regained his sanity, and wished to help. He injured you when I was too weak to use my powers, and then he later released control back to me. Since then, my powers have been growing, and I have been gaining a deeper link with David, considering he never told me his name, and might not have known it himself.”

“Yea, I was surprised too! I had been searching for my name, but, though I was close, could not remember it. I must have cried it out to you subconsciously, which told you it.”

Bri tries with all his might, and manages to get a much stronger connection with David. “Why couldn’t I communicate with you?”

“That was nightbane! A most potent drug that can kill our kind! It might have even contained silver and something else in it as well!” David’s much stronger voice is clearly angry, the response that one of hate.

“Don’t worry; I’ll clear things up for you. This won’t happen again,” Bri promises and again talks to, explaining everything, Julie.

“So, you think that David is perfectly under control?”

“Yes.”

“Very well then, take this…it’s a look-alike which will fool everyone, even me if I didn’t already know, into thinking David is again buried…you really are different, aren’t you?” Julie asks, though she knows the answer.

Katie proceeds to reenter at Julies signal and greets them with a question that could change Bri forever. She had been able to infer from the conversation what had happened; she knew that—apparently—the entity within was to blame and had been suppressed again once Bri had stolen the knowledge necessary from him. She had guessed that Bri disliked whatever was happening and wanted to use his powers for a greater purpose. “Do you want to know everything about yourself?”

“Yes, I do.” Bri replies with eagerness. “I want to help you!”

“Very well, but you may not like what you hear…”

Bri simply responds, “It doesn’t matter…now, please, continue!”

“Very well, I’ll tell you briefly what happened…this all started over three-hundred years ago, in someone who was named Brian David Lewis.” Bri has a slightly nervous look on his face, as ‘Bri’ is the name he goes by, and the resemblance is undeniably great. “He had been bitten by a werewolf, but managed to control the urge, but there was a voice in his head…an evil voice that he could sometimes control, but not always.” This triggers David’s fear, as he knows that he could end up like that. “He met our ancestors, the first slayers, and he teamed up with them because of his hatred for what they had turned him into.

“Slaying werewolves as they wished, it all went so well…He even fell in love with one of our members, Linda. It was a happy time for all of us…we had steadily grown, and his little brother, David, was now with the group. Brian’s powers grew, eventually allowing him to control Fire, Lightning, Darkness, Light, Water, and Ice, all at the same time. But then, something tragic happened…Brian lost control. He began killing everyone. By the time he had been revived to his former state, almost everyone had died. He might not have even been that lucky, but those he was closest to stopped him, causing the regain of control.

“There were, however, three survivors…His little brother, Linda, and the daughter of our leader at the time, Ali. All of them were scarred for life…David received a scar to the left side of his head, where the claws of his brother had pierced when David tried to prevent his brother, who he admired, from killing Ali and Linda.” Bri puts his hand over a birth mark he has…It matched exactly. And both could not help but realize how the name of David could have only been from two places. “That’s right…the mark that your family bears from that day…David loss all memory of this, so he eventually grew up normal…The virus never showed up, but was carried on genetically to his descendants. Ali was everyone’s little angel, since she was so young and cute. She cried out in terror when David was hurt. She only received minor wounds, since Linda healed and protected her.

“Linda, unfortunately, was the last one standing, and tried to protect Ali. Brian cut her down with a mighty blow to the chest, though Linda’s sword cut his cheek in the process. That is what finally awakened him. She did manage to live long enough to teach Ali our ways, before her injuries killed her. Ali spread the order again, and we were reborn…all descendants of her now possess small portions of werewolf power…the senses, the strength, and the speeds of us are enhanced. In the direct descendants of Ali—who are now dropped down to only me and Julie—are stronger than the rest. That, in brief, is the first part of our history, but there’s…”

Katie tries to finish, but Julie stops her, interrupting with, “Don’t tell him just yet…He needs some rest.”

“Very well. It’s about time we let you out of this cell and assign you temporary quarters.”

Bri is given a small room, about double the size of his cell, being fourteen feet tall and twenty feet wide in all directions. The door is built out of metal and the bed is slightly rough, but it would work. The bed was just what Bri was used too…His bed, at a time, was queen sized, but was jammed full of stuff to make it extra small, barely big enough to allow him to sleep. His newer bed is actually slightly bigger, making him feel like he’s in complete luxury.

Bri quickly goes to sleep, though he finds it slightly harder, as it is hard not to notice the guards outside the door providing slight distractions. It doesn’t help that David hates the idea of sleeping, because you’re vulnerable to attack, but Bri has had worse; he overcomes these easily, falling asleep in half an hour. When he awakes, Katie and Julie have opened the door, and Julie happily says, “Let’s eat!”

Exiting the room, they head right and go about fifty feet, passing countless corridors. When reaching a little past the fifty feet mark, the passageway ends, with double doors. “Welcome to our Dining Hall!” Katie happily greets, as she shows a slightly more friendly side by closing her eyes and smiling.

David comments, saying, “That was unexpected.”

“What?”

“She…actually smiled! From a person like that, I didn’t think it was possible!” Bri can’t help but smile, though he pushes it away. The doors open, revealing more doors on each of the other three sides. One for every side and every side are spaced wide apart, showing how the place is well suited to feed at least three-hundred people, as there are at least twenty long tables that can each hold at least fifteen people each. On the opposite side and slight to the right, there’s an opening, which shows the chef’s area.

Quickly taking a seat in the exact middle, food is then served to the three. The meal consists of mostly high-quality meat and vegetables, primarily beef and peas. Fruits are also served on the side of the grand plates, with apples and oranges the most common selection. In addition to all of this, there are three glasses per person. One for water, one for milk, and one for juice, which the favorite of is clearly orange. “Mmm! That is good, solid meat! I think you’ll enjoy it!” David, who, if his face was visible, would be licking his lips, delightfully revealed.

“I will!” Bri simply responds, quickly eats everything.

“Want seconds? You probably have the biggest appetite amongst all of us, but there’s plenty to spare!” Julie cheerfully asks.

At which, Bri happily responds, “Yes!”

After this healthy meal, which is just breakfast, Bri begins to have a conversation with Katie and Julie, as they wish to know each other better. This goes on for some time, before Katie switches to some topics more serious… “Now that you’ve seen all of this, what do you plan to do?”

“I don’t know yet. Just give me some time to think about it.” Bri responds, admitting he had not thought about it.

“You have all day…We’re going out for a while, and will be back an hour before diner. I hope you can give us an answer by then.” All three split into different directions, Katie and Julie to an area labeled ‘armory’ and Bri back to his quarters.

It does not take long for Bri to discuss this with David, as he says, “What do you really want to do above all else, Bri? It is your decision, not mine. I’ll support you whatever you eventually decide.” To himself, David thinks, “Though even if I did wish to oppose him, I couldn’t anyway…” Bri thinks, and thinks. It takes him a few hours, remembering scenes of the past, and having the story of his ancestor ringing through his mind. He had reached his decision. David gives him support, as he too, believes it to be the right thing, though does give a word of advice, which is a serious warning.

When Julie and Katie return, Katie asks, “Well?”

“I’ve decided.”

“What are you going to do?”

“I…want to protect those close to me. My family, my friends, all of them, and more!”

“And that means…”

“I wish…to become a…hunter!” Bri has formed his resolve and is devoted to this. They can see it.

As such, Katie replies, “Very well, then. Welcome to the Hunters, Bri, but you will have to go through training.”

“Bring it on!”

And then Julie adds one final bit. “But there is one thing you should know, as it mostly affects you.”

“I’m listening!” Bri, in a split second, replies. He is about to begin his destiny…


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