A Celtic princess walked through the castle in which her family lived in for centuries. She was the popular one among the Celtic and English men. With black hair with silver tips, she stood about five feet six inches. She knew tonight was important to all Celtics since it was the Harvest Moon celebration. Her lover was to attend the celebration; in fact, he was to arrive that hour.
“Milady,” a servant said, walking up and bowed. “There is a lord waiting for you in the courtyard.”
The princess waved the servant off and made her way to the courtyard where the lord was waiting for her. From where she stood, the princess recognized him as her lover. She rushed out to greet him. He turned and smiled, glad to see her.
“Lena,” he said, embracing her.
“John, you’ve come.”
“I promised I would. Some of my men have decided to come as well. They are helping set up.”
The two left the courtyard, Lena’s arm in her lover’s. Many times before, Lena has been told that her lover was not to be trusted; but she has let love blind her. John has taken advantage of that. He has planned to murder Lena on the most important night of the Celtics; that night. It was nearly time for it to begin and for Lena to make her entrance. John had it planned to put some poison in her wine after the pleasantries. If that did not work, he would have to think of something else.
“I can’t change if you don’t leave,” John heard.
He came around and saw that he was in Lena’s chamber. Lena had taken her chosen dress out of her wardrobe and had laid it on her bed.
“Oh, sorry. I’ll see you at the celebration,” he said, leaning in and kissed Lena before leaving.
John made his way to where the celebration was being held. He had some of his men on guard duty and the rest were there to relieve those on duty. Those already gathered are enjoying the ale and food that is being served. In her chamber, Lena put the last touches on her dress before her trusted handmaiden put her small and simple crown on. She made her way to the balcony that overlooked the field that held the Harvest Moon celebration. Every year, Lena officially begun the celebration; since her father died. Those gathered fell silent and turned their attention to the princess.
“My people, the Harvest Moon and the Moon Goddess Serenity is with us tonight,” Lena said loud enough for all to hear. She raised her arms wide before speaking again. “Eat and celebrated, for it is the time of the Harvest Moon.”
With that, those gathered cheered as Lena left the balcony to join the celebration. She had no idea that John planned to murder her that night. Lena entered the field a few minutes later and began to mingle right away. John and his second in command kept a very close eye on her, wanting to know the second to pull off the deed. But as hours past, and Lena has not sat down to eat or drink, John was not happy as he made through the crowd. How his love could go this long without eating or drinking has made John rethink this whole thing. At long last, the celebration ended and this who were celebrating returned to their homes. Lena made her way back into the castle to change and to eat. She knew there would be an attempt on her life. Her father was taken from her in that matter. John knocked on Lena’s door as she donned her nightdress.
“Lena, it’s John,” he said.
John opened the door and walked into the room to see Lena sitting down to eat.
That’s why she didn’t eat, John thought. “Is there something I can do for you, love,” Lena asked as she started to eat. Die. “No, just remain beautiful.”
Out of her window, sounds of people screaming filtered into the room. Lean rushed over to the window to see her love’s men killing her people. She turned to face John to see a look on his face that she has never seen before. It told her that what she believed was love was nothing more than a way to get close to her. John took out his dagger and made his way over to Lena.
“John, stop. You’re scaring me.”
“For too long I’ve been in your shadow. Too long have you placed your own people’s needs above mine. But not any more.”
John drove his dagger into Lena’s chest, right through a lung. Lena tried to breath, but the air was driven out of her. She backed up against the wall before she fell. John looked down at his dead lover than left the chamber; taking a turkey leg on his way out. Things quiet down and the chamber and the hall are an eerie quiet. The moon light was streaming in, and the Moon Goddess appeared.
“My dear Lena,” she said. “Be made whole, wake, and rise.”
The goddess watched the body for several minutes before Lena took a sudden deep breath. She looked up to see the Moon Goddess standing where the moon light hit the floor.
“Your love has betrayed you and your people; and there is nothing that can be done for you are believed to be dead. Become one of my warriors and not wander the earth,” Serenity said.
“Of course, Moon Goddess.”
“Then come, there are things to be done”
Lena stepped into the moon light and found herself leaving her chamber behind. For one thousand years, Lena has been a warrior for the Moon Goddess. Some years ago, Lena has been made a goddess and made a city haven for all beings. Not just any beings, but Elves, Dragons, Shape Shifters, Vampyres; all sorts of beings from stories and lore.
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
Sao was looking for the highway sign that said where the nearest rest area was. For two days, she has been driving to where her new house was. This was no big deal, Sao has been on the move for a couple of years now, looking for her family. They skipped out on her the day she graduated from an all-boys school; something no one has heard of before. Though it was an assassin school, Sao was one of the lucky ones that made it. Her F-250 was full of things Sao did not want in the moving trailer; in the passenger seat is her Red Tail Hawk in his cage.
“Are we almost there,” Drake asked.
“No; I’m looking for a rest area. If you weren’t so willing to get going this morning, I could have found out where the city was.”
Sao reached into the backseat after setting the cruise control. After fumbling around a bit, she brought up a dead rat.
She slipped the rat between the cage bars and Drake snatched it. Sao turned her attention back to the road; glad Drake was quiet for a couple of minutes. That was the major thing about Sao, she could actually speak with animals. She has gotten used to it, but when some one else had come upon one of her conversations, Sao would be on the road within two minutes. Two hours later, Sao pulled into a rest area parking spot. She opened Drake’s cage door and he took off to hunt. Sao headed for the building to answer the call of nature and for snacks and refreshments. Two days on the road has depleted her supply of road food. She filled a small tote bag with snacks and the available soda pop before she returned to her truck. She opened up a state map and using the directions she received, Sao plotted the next course of directions. Drake returned fifteen minutes later and Sao headed onto the highway a minute later with some music going. That evening, some hours later, Sao entered the city limits. Drake has his head tucked under a wing, sleeping. Sao drove through the streets, looking for her home. She found it and was surprised that it was from the Victorian age. Sao had beaten a thunder storm that she saw on the way in by a couple of hours; however, it was going to take that long to unpack the trailer. The house has two two car garages, enough room from the moving trailer to fit in one. Sao maneuvered the trailer into the garage and unhitched her truck. From down the street, two yellow eyes watched the activity of the new citizen.
Should I go introduce myself, he thought.
The owner of the eyes, a white tiger, headed down the street toward Sao. This is no ordinary tiger, he is a Shape Shifter; though he prefers his tiger pelt. Sao started unpacking what is in her truck bed, with the knowledge of the coming storm. For the time being, Sao piled the items in the garage; wanting to get Drake and the other items from the cab as well. The tiger grew closer to Sao, who seemed to pay no mind. She won’t understand me.
“Welcome to Wyld Nites,” it said.
To any one else, that would have sounded more like a growl, but to Sao, she understood every word.
“Thank you,” she said.
“Yeah, is that a problem.”
“No. I’m Bane.”
Sao continued to unpack the truck bed, putting the items out of the way in the garage.
“How is it that you can understand me,” Bane asked.
“I was five or six when I went exploring one summer day. My parents were doing some cleaning around the house and weren’t paying any mind to me,” Sao began her tale; taking the items from the cab after closing the tale gate. “We lived in a rural part of town, close to who many called a witch. I was cutting through the fields when I found a young fox caught in a leg trap. I tried to free it, but it snapped at me. I had to leave it to continue on my way. A few minutes later, I found a shack with all sorts of things you would find a witch using. Luckily, she wasn’t home at the time. I was curious and started looking around. When the witch returned, I was petting her cat. She placed a curse on me, the ability to talk to all kinds of animals and lose my ability to talk to people.”
Sao put Drake’s cage by the door that led into the house before closing her truck up. She opened the cage door before she sat down near Bane.
“Thing was, I was mute. She told me the curse was immediate and set me on my way. As I made my way home, I found the fox still trapped. This time, when I said I was trying to help, it settled down until I freed it. It thanked me before taking off.”
She’s just a human. Nothing really special about her; except she can talk with animals, Bane thought.
He’s having doubts about me. I can see it in his eyes, Sao thought.
“What about you? Anything interesting.”
The sound of thunder is heard in the distance. Bane looked at Sao, who smiled. “No.”
I’m the familiar of a goddess and a weretiger.
Drake woke up and saw Sao talking with Bane. He hopped out of his cage, stretched, and hopped out to Sao’s side.
“He’s a weretiger,” Drake mentally told Sao.
Bane looked up at the stars as the clouds started rolling in.
“So beautiful, yet.”
“Yet what? So mysterious.”
Bane knew the stars more intimately than anyone else, besides Lena.
“Is there something bugging you? And don’t say it’s me,” Sao said, joking with the last bit.
He’s hiding something.
“I’m fine, really. So, where would you like me to take you,” he asked.
“What would you be doing at this time of night? Besides walking the land due to the lack of something to do.”
“Honestly, I make love or hunt.”
Bane was blunt as he looked at Sao. Something told him that Sao knew what he was. “You know what I am, don’t you.”
“Yes, I do. Drake told me. I respect you for who you are, not what you are. I won’t tell, I promise.”
“I thank you for that. I used to walk the city as a tiger when they believed I was only a tiger. I came out and told them I was part human after I knew my lady would be safe.”
Bane had refrained from using the word “goddess” around Sao, even when he came very close to using it.
“The goddess of the city is his lady,” Drake told her mentally.
“What happened when they heard the news.”
“They took it well enough. Where I’m from, it’s not that weird or uncommon.”
I really shouldn’t have told her so much, but I trust her, Bane thought.
The first rain drops fell as another thunder clap is heard. “Where did you come from, if you don’t mind me asking,” Sao asked.
“It is nice, but I like it here.”
“How was it that you became a weretiger.”
“I was born one, but my parents were killed when I was young and my lady raised me.”
Bane looked out into the night as the storm grew closer.
“Sorry, I usually don’t talk about my past much.”
“It’s alright. Any one special besides your lady.”
“My love, Suko.”
“That’s great you’ve got some one.”
“We’re happy, that’s all that matters. Do you have some one to love No one that cherishes you?"
“No, not yet. When I think I found some one, and I tell him about.”
“Her talking to animals,” Drake said, getting a look from Sao.
“He stops call or stopping by. It’s the price to pay I guess.”
“You’re in luck here. Talking with animals is the least strangest thing.”
“I’m still trying to settle down from moving. Though the animals would keep my company.”
“I have no choice with you. You won’t leave.”
“That’s the beauty of it. I get free board and I don’t compete for food.”
“You’ll become food if you don’t get back in your cage.”
Drake took off with what seemed like a smile.
“I swear, he gets on my nerves.”
“My lady is like you; but we love each other. I liked being her familiar.”
“Drake’s not my familiar. He’s just a rescued Red Tail I found; broken wing. Actually had to teach him how to fly again.”
“He’s basically your familiar. A familiar’s an animal companion who can talk to their human, and is their friend.”
The rain started coming down harder, telling Bane he should head off and Sao that she should get inside.
“I should get going,” Bane said. “I enjoyed our talk.”
Bane nodded to Sao and headed off. Sao stood and headed into the garage. She closed the door and started to take what she took out of her truck before starting on the trailer. It took her a while to get the boxes inside and unpacked then; about an hour and a half. Around seven in the evening, Sao heard her stomach growl.
“Some one’s hungry,” Drake said.
“Yeah, I know.”
Sao put a hand to her left butt check to double check to see if she still had her wallet with her. She headed for the front door, grabbing the keys on the way.
“I’ll be back in a few minutes. I’m getting myself some dinner,” she said.
Sao headed for her truck, keys in hand. She climbed into her truck, sitting there for a minute to put the house key on her truck key ring. She started the truck and headed into town; wanting something to eat. She was surprised to see that Wyld Nites is a modern city, with nearly everything you would find in any city. She spotted a Burger King not far off and headed for it. A few minutes later, she received her dinner and headed home.She pulled into the driveway and rushed inside to avoid being soaked by the pouring rain. She walked through the foyer, which has a staircase that hugged two walls and had two landings at each corner; and led up to the second floor. In the living room, which seemed like a converted ballroom, there are nearly every technological toy and video game imaginable. Sao sat down at the table in the kitchen.
“Welcome,” a voice said, making Sao jump out of her chair. “Sorry, I’m the Kitchen Cooking Assistant. You can call me Casey.”
“Kitchen Cooking Assistant?”
“I aid in cooking everyday meals; even doing all the cooking.”
Sao calmed down. She picked up the over turned chair, sat down, and started to eat. She finished in about fifteen minutes. She threw the trash away as she headed back to the garage. She opened the trailer door and started putting the boxes inside. Clothes, books, and other belongings. By the time she got to her mattress and bed frame, Saw was exhausted. It was nearly ten at night and she needed some sleep.
A knock at the front door pulled her from falling asleep on the mattress.
“Why can’t they learn to tell time,” Sao complained when she saw what time it was. She opened the front door to see two men about twenty two or twenty three. She saw a large van, about a 15 seater, and a large moving truck parked out by the curb.
“Are you Sao Williams?”
“I’m Brandon, and this is Night Shadow. Sorry we bothered you if you’re not.”
“No, I am. What can I do for you.”
“Well... Apparently this is where we live.”
Sao studied this for a minute before stepping aside. Brandon and Night Shadow walked into see Sao’s boxes.
“Looks like we’re not the only new people here,” Brandon said.
“What kind of bird is this,” Shadow asked, looking at Drake.
“Red Tail Hawk; name’s Drake.”
Shadow reached up to touch Drake, but he snapped and Shadow pulled his arm back and looked at Brandon, who smiled.
“Yeah, nice try pal,” Drake said.
"Did that bird just...talk,” Brandon said, shocked.
“Yep. I can kinda talk to animals,” Sao explained as she brought in the last bed frame piece.
“You can talk to animals.”
“Yep. Don’t worry, it’s not the weirdest thing here.”
Sao started to carry her boxes upstairs, but Brandon stopped her.
“We’ll help with these. Our stuff’s charmed; Shadow.”
“Already on it.”
Shadow was out at the van and truck. All he did was open the doors and all of their boxes started for the opened front door. A white wolf jumped out of the van as Shadow got his Golden Eagle. Sao watched the boxes bring themselves into the house and stack in the foyer. As they did, Shadow walked up to Brandon after a greeting with Sao.
“That’s Snow, and this,” Shadow said, taking the blindfold off the eagle. “Is Goldie. Let’s go find our rooms.”
The trio headed up the stairs as their familiars got to know each other. Sao had not really grown up with members of the opposite sex; except for the all male school she attended. This should be a new experience for her. Brandon stood about six feet and with brown hair that is roughly shoulder length that is usually pulled up in a ponytail. He is thin enough to do acrobatics. He was the only one of his witch family to master bother the summer and winter elemental magic. Shadow, on the other hand, looked to be twenty-two, but is really five hundred. He has been extremely loyal to his friends; even die for them. He is the rare black dragon, easily blending into the night sky. In his human form, Shadow has jet black hair, cut short. He stood two inches shy of six feet; with a body built that some what resembled his dragon one.
Sao found the master suite, and knew this one was hers. The actual room had a queen size bed that is in the middle of the room, pushed up against the wall across from the bathroom, with a four post bed frame. The dresser has been carved with a detail of many of what has been considered to be “mythical” creatures. The legs came down to a three toed claw resting on a ball. The bed legs and posts mirror the dresser; hung between the top of the posts is a thin veil. The bed head is a very detailed carving of a dragon head; and the foot is a detailed tiger carving. The carpet is a thick soft material covered the floor wall to wall; except for the bathroom. The windows are bay and have blinds at the windows and shades at the wall. The bathroom floor is a light blue tile with rugs that matched the bedroom carpet. Two sinks faced a long mirror that is roughly the length of the counter. At the far end of the bathroom is a walk-in show, similar to a handicap show. Opposite the show, next to the sinks, is the toilet. Next to the shower, closer to the door, is a two person bathtub with jets. When Sao walked back into the bedroom, she found her boxes stacking themselves.
“Thought you’d like these up here,” Brandon said, popping his head in.
Brandon smiled than left the room. Sao found her clothes and started putting them away. The rest of her boxes are books, DVDs and movies, even a home theater system that would fit perfectly in the living/ball room. By the time Sao put her extra large sweat pants on, Brandon and Shadow had already fallen asleep in their rooms; which they customized through their magic. None of them realized that they had begun living in a city that is on the verge of war. The vampyres are patiently waiting for the right time to take the city from Lena. The vampyre society has always been known to be a matriarchy of sorts. Those who do not understand their culture, mainly the humans, believed them to worship the devil and the other things movies have shown vampyres to be, they do not. Though they are dangerous to mess with. The matron of the Wyld Nites vampyre clan is Bara. She has been the matron for roughly two hundred years, when she challenged the matron and won. She stood shy of five feet and her grey eyes changed to a hint of red when she turned aggressive or in battle. The next morning, Sao woke to see the sun shining through the blinds and shades. She climbed out of bed and headed downstairs to see Brandon cooking breakfast.
“You’re cooking breakfast,” she asked.
"Why not?” He seems nice,” Casey said.
Sao would have given a face to the kitchen, but that would have been weird. She went back upstairs to see what else that needed to be unpacked. Many of her books could stay in the bedroom, though the home theater system can be set up in the living room. She started carrying the boxes down when Shadow finally decided to emerge from his room.
“A home theater system; sweet.”
“The boxes of my movies and the rest of the system’s still in my room if you want to get them.”
Shadow went into Sao’s room to get the boxes as she went into the living/ball room to see how it could be set up. “Breakfast is ready,” Brandon shouted.
Sao and Shadow left the entertainment boxes and went into the kitchen. On the table, they saw plates of pancakes, bacon, sausage, and other breakfast dishes.
“You out did yourself, Brandon,” Shadow said, sitting down and serving himself.
“It’s the lest I could do for Sao.”
Why do I get the feeling they’re competing for me, Sao thought.
She sat down and served herself, putting that thought in the back of her mind for the time being. For several years, Sao had no one she could really talk to. In the school, it was forbidden to talk with the other students, and other than Drake for the past two years, Sao had no roommates. After breakfast, Casey said it would clean up; freeing the trio to work on the theater system. The projector is hung from the ceiling a good distance from the bare wall, and two shelves are taken up by the movies Sao has collected over the years.
Outside the city limits, two new cars approach the city, each pulling a small trailer. One is a Shape Shifter, the last of her family, has traveled across the continental United States to reach Wyld Nites. In the back seat, her orange Bangle tiger was sleeping amidst of the things the driver did not want in the trailer or trunk. She looked about twenty, but is one hundred and fifty years old. In the other car, a Spanish born man that looked to be about twenty five, entered the city limits and started looking for his new home. In Spain, he trained for several hundred years, for he was one thousand and five hundred years old, in all dragon magic, air, and fire magic. When he returned to his father’s clan, his father had tried to find him a mate; but Rojo refused. He ran away and found himself on his way to Wyld Nites.
Mark was walking down the street in front of Sao’s house and noticed that the house now had new occupants. Sao came into view in the large bay window and Mark felt an instant attraction to her. When Shadow came into view, Mark had to back off, having to rethink the plan that he had already started forming. A car pulled up at the curb and Mark continued on his way. The driver, Hoshiko, got out and started for the front door. She knocked and waited for an answer. Sao opened the door, still in the clothes she slept in. “May I help you”
“Um...” I though it was empty, Hosh thought. “I was assured this house was empty.”
Sao looked at this new person. She understood Brandon and Shadow, but not her.
“No, it’s not. Are you sure you have the right house.”
“Yeah. I’m Hosh.”
She joined Hosh in getting her boxes. Sao looked in the backseat and saw a tiger waiting to be let out. She opened the door and the tiger got out.
“Hey, he’s dangerous,” Hosh said.
“No he’s not. He’s harmless,” Sao said, petting the tiger.
“I can talk with animals. Let’s get your stuff inside.”
When Sao and Hosh carried their first boxes in, Brandon rushed out to get the rest of them. Hosh took a look around, which told her that Sao, Brandon, and one other person was there almost two days before she arrived. When the last of the boxes were taken out of the trailer, Sao pulled Hosh’s trailer into the back yard. She was surprised at the size of it. It was one of the deepest yards she has seen; large enough to have at least two more houses with yard to spare. Instead of houses, it had a large in-ground pool complete with slide and springboard. Closer to the house, a medium sized patio has a furniture set, hot tub, a towel warmer, and a music system.
“We can do so much more with this,” Brandon said as he walked onto the patio.
“We’re not doing anything yet.”
“Sao, Brandon, new person,” they heard Shadow say.
Sao sighed as she led the way back inside. What was it with all the new peopled being attracted to her house? In the foyer, Sao and Brandon saw a man about twenty five and standing about six feet. His hair was all black, except for the tips, which were red. “I’m Rojo,” he said.
“He’s a dragon,” Drake mentally told Sao.
“So? Shadow’s a dragon.”
Rojo was the next in line to be patron of his Spanish dragon clan; but the fact that he ran from home since he did not agree with his father finding him a mate. Sao smiled at Rojo as Brandon and Shadow went out to get Rojo’s boxes. Rojo headed upstairs to see what room of the ten bedrooms of various sizes he wanted. Seven full and two half bathrooms are also found on the second flooring; among hidden rooms and secret passages. At this time, Sao saw a door that led off some where. She found a dining hall with three china cabinets filled with china sets through the door. Through the dining room, which could sit up to fifty people, is the larger kitchen made for when the party guests can enjoy dinner. Later, Rojo began to unpack after lunch, Hosh did as well with Sao helping. They were making plans to go out that night. Hosh had chosen a small room; it suited her well enough “No, I haven’t been out, yet. If you want, you could use your tiger pelt,” Sao said as she put the last empty box by the door.
“Are you sure.”
Sao smiled and left Hosh’s room. She went into her room to see what could be fine for the night of bar hopping, seeing how she has not changed since she turned in the night she arrived. She grabbed a pair of camouflage pants, a plain tank top, a pair of underwear and boxers and headed into the bathroom to shower. After a five minute shower, Sao came back out, messing up her wet hair. She grabbed a pair of socks and her hiker boots after putting on deodorant. She headed downstairs, carrying her socks and boots. She had not expected all of this within the first couple of days living in the city. It was better than living alone with all of this room. Before she knew it, Sao and Hosh were walking down town for the bars and restaurants.
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
Hosh changed into her tiger pelt as she and Sao passed by the park. Bane spotted them and wondered who this new tiger was. He appeared not far from the two; Hosh saw him and stopped. Bane approached them.
“Hello, Sao,” he said. “You must be Hosh.”
“Hiya, Bane,” Sao said.
“Yes, I am.”
Hosh did not know there was another white tiger in the city. She looked at Sao, who was calm with Bane standing just feet away.
“Sao, how can you be so calm with him standing there,” she asked. “I feel calm with Bane there because I trust him with my life,” Sao answered at that. If Bane wanted Hosh to know more, he’ll be the one to tell her, not Sao. Bane walked over and rubbed his forehead on Sao’s leg. “She’s my lover,” he said.
Bane said that to scare any thought Hosh had of hurting Sao. He hoped that Sao did not say anything wild; all she did was pet him; playing along.
“I love him as much as I do Drake, and more.”
Sao knew he was Lena’s familiar and had a lover, and that this could be treading on dangerous water, but Bane seemed to know what he was doing. Hosh seemed surprised to hear this coming from the two of them. She was thinking about the possibilities of Sao and Bane when he changed into his human form.
“I take it you’re a Shape Shifter,” Bane said as he wrapped his arm around Sao’s wrest and kissed her cheek. “You shouldn’t be out this late, love.”
“I’m just worried about you. You may be pregnant and I would hate for any one to hurt you.”
“I’m fine, my love.”
“What brings you here, Hosh,” Bane asked, turning his attention to the new Shape Shifter.
“Passing through, really.”
“I was passing through. But then I met Bane and I didn’t want to leave my true love.”
This might be getting to be too much, Sao thought.
“So, you’re not staying,” Bane asked.
“I’m not sure. I’ll be staying for a while, that much I know.”
“Don’t you think we’re taking this a bit too far,” Sao mentally asked Bane. “Why would I want to leave you,” she asked verbally.\
“I was just worried. I’m sure you’ve attracted many other guys besides me."
Bane smiled and loosened his grip on Sao. “Maybe, but this is fun. I could stop if you want.” “You could get a room at Tavern de la Noche. Lena rents ‘em cheap to visitors.”
“There’s nothing wrong in having fun.” “I know I’m attractive, but the only one I’m attracted to is you, love. Besides, Hosh is staying at my place; I’ve got a few rooms to spare.”
“It’s nice that you took her in, honey. Lena’s been busy, so it’ll keep her from having more to do.”
“I thought we were going bar hopping,” Hosh said.
“Yeah. I’ll see you later, love.”
Sao kissed Bane before she removed herself from his hold. Bane returned the kiss and went on his way. Sao and Hosh went their way as well; toward the Bloody Rose. Lawrence sat in his DJ booth, waiting for things to get started. The door opened and Sao and Hosh walked in. When Sao looked around, she recognized it from the dream she had before she arrived in the city. The dream showed her a war that ended two months before the new friends arrived; her guide was Lawrence. He looked down and saw Sao and Hosh walk in and recognized Sao from her dream.
“Come on, it’s a club, not a thirty foot python,” Sao said, trying to get the Shape Shifter inside.
Hosh walked in and followed Sao over to the bar. Casually, like she was a regular, Sao ordered two beers. Hosh was surprised that Sao was so relaxed after three days of living in the city. Lawrence set up the next set and headed down to the bar.
“Hello, lovely,” he said as he said down on one of the bar stools.
Sao turned and saw Lawrence, giving him a look that said “Who are you?"
“Sao, and this is Hosh.”
Hosh looked from Sao, to Lawrence, and back; wondering how it seemed like these two knew each other.
“Hi. This place yours or part-owned,” Sao asked.
Hosh was still trying to figure out where she fit in the city. Sao and Bane were lovers and Sao seemed to know Lawrence like a good friend. “I own the whole bar. The Goddess gave it to me.”\
Lawrence looked Sao over and thought, She’d make a good lover.
“Who’s the Goddess,” Hosh asked.
“Lena. She’s a servant of the Moon Goddess Serenity, but Lena is the goddess of the city.”“Who’s the Moon Goddess,” Hosh asked.
“She lives on the God’s plane. You’ll have to ask Lena about that.”
“When can I talk to her?”
“Now, I guess. She’s at her tavern. Sorry, this set’s just about down.”
Lawrence smiled and went back to his booth.
Nice girls. I like ‘em both, he thought.
In Lena’s bar, she smiled when she received Lawrence’s message.
“Two beers please,” Sao asked when she reached the bar.
“Hello, ladies,” a man said, walking up and obvious drunk.
“Out, you drunk idiot,” Lena said, kicking him in the butt. “Sorry, he’s a little drunk. I’m Lena."
“I’m Sao, and this is Hosh.”
“Sorry about my son, don’t mind him. Sao, do you mind if I speak with Hosh alone.”
Sao took her beer and disappeared into the crowd.
“So, what brings you to my city and me,” Lena asked.
“Honesty, I heard about it; and I wanted to know about you.” Hosh tried to spot Sao in the crowd, but to no avail; Sao had managed to lose herself among the patrons.
"Well, I'll answer what I can," Lena said. "Don't worry, you'll be okay, so will Sao. THe worse thing that could happen is that Dorian will hit on her."\
"He'll get a swift kick the ass if he does," came Sao's reply in their minds.
Apparently Sao was close enough to hear the comment.
"Go ahead and get him, Sao."
"Who's the Moon Goddess? And who, exactly, are you," Hosh asked.
"The Gods and Goddesses rule this world and the Moon Goddess is one of them. When I was young, I was a Celtic priestess to the Moon Goddess. My English lover betrayed me and my people. My Goddess took pity on me and made me one of her warriors. After a thousand years, she sent me to be the goddess of this city. Does that answer your questions?"
"It'll be my pleasure to do so."
"From my travels, everyone here is...different. Even Sao, who is human in everyway, can talk to animals."
"And what's wrong with that?"
"Why are all these "outcasts"..." Hosh used her index and middle fingers on both hands to indicate air quotes. "Here?" "I'm not sure. I've met everyone. I don't let any one hurt anyone else and I keep peace and order. They are nice people; and the ones that aren't either change or die quickly."
Lena's voice was plain when she spoke, letting Hosh know she was not playing.
"So, I really don't have to worry?"
"About what? You should worry about common things, but no one's going to hurt you. I have strict laws, and I keep them."
Vengence from Lena was quick when some one was hurt.
"If you were hurt..."
"No. My family were killed, all Shape Shifters, for their hides."
"No one will hunt you for your hide. Cases like yours is why this city was made."
"Yeah. I was teased right out of town 'cause I can communicate with animals. Everyone here's different in their own way, yet we're all alike," Sao said.
"I met another weretiger when we were going to the Bloody Rose. Said that he and Sao were..."Hosh was interrupted by Sao's mental coughs.
"I've talked to Bane since then. He's actually with a dragon named Suko. He told you that because he was protecting Sao. They're friends and he knew you would leave her alone if you thought they were together," Lena explained. "He knows know he can trust you."
"So, they're not a couple?"
"Suko would Kill Bane if they were together."
"Which is why we're telling her."
Sao appeared at the bar, refilled her beer, and disappeared back into the crowd.
Hosh was still trying to get her head wrapped around all of this.
"A dragon and Bane's lover," Lena said, seeing Sao pop in and out. "He has a thing about dragons."
"Strange if you ask me."Sao can be seen talking with one of the other humans that live in the city. By now, many knew of her ability and have accepted her.
"Him being a weretiger."
"He gave it away earlier."
"Yes. He's my familiar as well," Lena said. "You don't need to be so sarcastic."
"Hey, I wasn't here when they start their thing."
"He's your familiar?"
"He acted as my bodyguard." "Don't make me get Dorian to harass you."
"I know he's a tiger, but why would you have a familiar."
"I keep him for company. He's my friend more than anything."
"We're all friends here, you know that, Lena," Sao said.
"Yes, we're friends here. But he was there for me before the city."
Lena drank the rest of her beer.
"Sao, you have yet to really have friends here. Is some one being anti-social," Lena asked, laughing.
"I'm not being anti-social, Lena. I got here three days ago, and I've been helping the others move in. Besides, it's difficult enough for humans."
At this point in time, Mark waked into the bar and ordered a beer after taking a glance around He saw Sao talking with another human.
"Excuse me," he said, walking up. "But do you mind if I speak with this lovely young woman?"
A moment of silence passed before Sao an d the other male arranged a time to meet up again before he walked off.
"I'd like to know why you so bluntly interrupted my conversation with my friend," Sao asked a bit rudely.
"I noticed that you were new in town and was wondering if I could show you around."
Sao looked over at Lena and Hosh, who were still and decided to take the tour.
Sao finished her beer and followed Mark; only after paying. The two walked through the streets, seemingly harmless. Mark knew where they were going: Lover's Hill. Everyone knew that Lover's Hill was Mark's; seeing how that's where he had his way with nearly every woman that lived or passed through Wyld Nites. Once they reached the hill, Sao found a decent sized home; about a two bedroom. Mark opened the door and allowed Sao to enter first. WHen she walked in, Sao found that the living room was barely furnished with a couch, two side tables, a television, and a lamp.
"It's not much, but I get by," Mark said.
Sao sat down on the couch as Mark got them something to drink. SOmething told her that something was not right, but she stayed, not knowing what it was. Mark walked back in with two glasses and handed one to Sao. When she went to take a drink, Sao smelled something that was not right; so she pretended to take a drink.\
"How do you like Wyld Nites so far," Mark asked.
"It's alright, still needs some getting used to."
Mark looked Sao over, wanting to touch her, but she had barely drank what he gave her. Though, she did have a few beers at the bar. Mark shifted closer to Sao before he took another drink. Sao was becoming more and more irresistible with each passing minute and Mark was holding off as long as he could until...
Back at the bar, Hosh has finally become comfortable with the other patrons and has started talking with them; not even realizing that Sao had left. The patrons have accepted Hosh, even though she had arrived that day.
Sao found herself on her back and Mark entering her. She knew now that Mark had tried to drug her enough to have intercourse and get a respone from her. Sao tried to get Mark off her, but he would not budge. Mark always had his way in the end with women; no matter what. Mark has been considedre to be some what of a man-street walker, but he has considered himself to be more of a lady's man. Finally, Mark removed himself from Sao and put his pants back on.
"You're free to go. But if you tell any one, I will have youhunted down and killed," Mark said. Sao stood and put her pants back on and made her way to the door before she ran all the way back home. Hosh had waited for Sao to return, but had went home. When Sao walked in, Sno sensed that somethin was different about her, and it was not Mark's smell. Soon, everyone had turned in for the night and Sao had put the event in the back of her mind. As she slept, Sao received one of the strangest dreams she has have.
Sao found herself in what looked like a castle corridor. A ways off, she saw some one that looked like her in several ways. Strangely enough, Sao could have sworn that this woman could have been her in a past life. From what she saw, Sao could tell she was some where in the medieval period. "Lady Sarah," Sao heard a servant say to the other woman. "Your presence is requested in the throne room". "Thank you," Sarah said. Sarah was the first of her family to be born into noblity. She was the only daughter of a blacksmith who was down on his luck. Now he was working in the castle forge and was treated with respect. Sao decided to follow Sarah, due to the fact she may learn something; and it looked like she would not be able to interact with those of this period. Sao followed Sarah into the throne room and hung back. "Lady Sarah, I need you and your men to escort Lord Michael from the ship La Fontome. It is due to arrive in two weeks. Can you make?" "I've made it in shorter times than that, milord," Sarah said. Sarah bowed and left the throne room. Sao watched her leave and wondered if she could help with the escort. She left the spot she was in and started after Sarah to her chambers; but did not reach the door until it was closed. Mintutes later, Sarah reappeared inher travel clothes that made her look more like a ranger and less like a lady of the court. Sao started to follow, but found herself fading away.
Sao woke and saw the sun shining into her room. Her dream could have told her something about her family past. Sao had to put her dream in the back of her mind as she dragged herself out of bed and downstairs.
"Look who finally decided to get up," Hosh said. "Where did you go last night?"
"Some stupid hill; nothing special," Sao lied.
She headed into the kitchen as Casey put a warm plate of eggs on the table.
"Hope you like scrambled eggs," the computer voice said.
"The only kind I'd eat," Sao said as she got the ketchup and sat to eat.
This Lady Sarah looked similar to Sao, despite the many year difference of the medieval and the present times. When Sao first saw Sarah, she appeared to be nothing more than a lady of the court. When Sao finished her eggs, her mind now was on her interaction with Mark the previous night. Up to last night, Sao had no sexual relations with any man. One thing weighed heavily on Sao's mind: will a child result of that action?
Before the friends realize it, a month has past since they arrived in Wyld Nites. They all found jobs dowing what they did best. The most successful of whom was Sao; who ran the animal shelter. Today, though, Sao had closed up early so she could go pick some things up from the store. When she arrived home, Sao took the home pregnancy test and retreated to her bathroom. Minutes later, Sao learned she was pregnant.
"Sao," she heard Brandon call.
Brandon appeared in her bathroom door and saw Sao still looking at the home pregnancy test. "What are you looking at?"
"Remember what I said about the hill?"
"The stupid one?"
"Yeah. Mark took me there and we made love."
Sao turned and showed Brandon the result. Brandon walked in to see what it was.
"I can safely assume this was the first."
"It was. How and I going to tell the others? I can't hide it for long."
"Tell 'em tonight. In a few months, I could see what gender it is."
Sao took the test and what it came with and threw it away. She reached the ground floor as Bane walked in. "Hey, Bane," she said.
"Lena's been sent back to Ancient Ireland to deal with a vampyre problem. An hour after she left, some of the vampyres here attacked a small group of people in the park," the weretiger explained. "Do you think it's an isolated incident," Brandon asked.
"Not sure. But one thing is for sure. With Lena gone, the city as we knew it just might change."
In Rain, the nearest city to Wyld Nites, word has reached Mary and John Williams that Sao had moved into the haven city. They had moved to Rain roughly three years after leaving their oldest daughter at an assassin school. They had not expected Sao to survive the school, much less graduate. Mary and John had adopted the medieval thinking and lifestyle. Before Sao was born, her parents believed that she was a boy. When her parents got over the shock of it, they had planned on an arranged marriage into a wealthy family.
Sao and Hosh were cooking dinner with Casey's help. None of her friends, save Brandon, knew Sao was pregnant. She knew she could hide it for three or four months until it started to show. Drake hopped into the kitchen, onto the back of a chair and looked at Sao, tilting his head the way only birds can do.
"Are you going to tell them," he asked.
"Tell us what," Rojo asked as the three amigos walked into the kitchen.
"You're what," Hosh said, not believing what she just heard."
The night that I disappeared, a guy named Mark took me up to Lover's Hill and we did it; though I did resist at first."
"Wow. Any other time, this would be exciting, but Bane just called. There has been another vampyre attack," Brandon said. "If things continue like this, we could have a war on our hands."
Dinner was done cooking and was served. No one spoke, some how each knew that things will worsen. After dinner, the dishes and leftovers were taken care of and the five friends kept their silence as they retired to the living room. They did not know what to do know since Sao was pregnant. There was a knock at the door and Sao answered it to see Bane standing there.
"Come on in," Sao said.
They walked into the living room and Sao retook her seat as Bane remained standing. "The vampyres have declared martial law over the city. Everyone is required to attend the meeting in the park tomorrow night."
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
The following day passed without incident. The citizens all knew of the meeting that night as they went about their business. As it got closer to the meeting, the group met with Bane and made their way to the park. What Bane told them about the vampyre clan seemed like their entire history. The clan is matriarchal, or has been, for several centuries. For roughly two hundred years, the clan in Wyld Nites was patriarchal; led by a patron that was bent on ruling with an iron fist. A young female challenged the patron and won. Bara has ruled the city’s clan since then; planning to take control of the city. She has had several patrons and up to fifty children. She learned that Lena was sent away and took the opportunity.
“Stay close,” Bane whispered to Sao.
It was dangerous for the other creatures to be there at the meeting, but for Sao it’ll be deadly. Sao caught up to Bane as the group arrived at the area in the park where the meeting was to be held. Nearly the entire city was there, with the vampires mingling about. Bara stood on a rock and looked over those gathered.
“Citizens of Wyld Nites, heed me and my message. For too long we have lived under the rule of Lena. She had become soft in her rule and has left us as a result. The vampyre clan has decided to claim martial law and lay new laws. Starting tomorrow, there will be a curfew of sundown. Any one caught breaking this will be punished. The vampires will be patrolling the streets at night and those who work with us will patrol during the day. The bars will be closed effectively immediately and all of the humans will be moved to Rain in one week. Now, return to your homes,” Bara said.
The news that the humans would be moved to Rain had Sao confused. Will she be counted among the humans or will she be allowed to remain in Wyld Nites? For now, Sao returned to the Victorian house with her friends and Bane. Each knew that there could be a chance that Sao would be forcibly moved to Rain.
“They can’t do that,” Shadow said the second he stepped into the living room. “They just did, Shadow,” Sao said, sitting down.
“We’ve got to do something.”
“Like what? Drive a stake through their hearts? In case you forgot, I’m pregnant. I just can’t be throwing myself into a war here.”
“Pregnant,” Bane said, surprised.
“Yeah. Some jackass named Mark did it.”
“I know of him. He considers himself to be a lady’s man, but all he is a rouge man-street walker of sorts, Bane said, sitting down.
“A rogue man-street walker,” Hosh questioned.
“Some years ago, Mark arrived here with nothing more than the clothes on his back. He found his way to the run down, but still operational, street walker house. Within six months, he was there as one of the more popular male prostitutes. Then, about two years later, he was accused of setting the house on fire. Mark was taken back after the right person was caught six months after that. Then, two months after that, he turned rogue,” Bane explained. “This is the first I’ve heard of a pregnancy resulting of one of his meetings”
“What,” Sao said, her turn to be surprised.
“Mark teamed up with a female witch who would make a potion that Mark drank before he set out for the night. The result would be he would shoot blanks.”
“I heard about that potion,” Brandon said. “It would work for a day and those using it would have a ready supply of them”
“But why would he not use it the night we made love.”
“One answer is obvious,” Hosh said.
“Besides that one.”
Everyone fell silent, thinking of why Mark would not take the potion. Slowly, one by one, the five friends headed upstairs to turn in. Bane headed for the door to return to wherever he stayed. Sao watched him leave, some how feeling that she and the Shape Shifter were connected. She shrugged it off as she headed up to her room, readied for bed, and turned int.
Sao found herself in ranger clothes and riding a horse. She took a closer look at her side and found a sword at her side and a bow and quiver on her back. Same dream, must be, she thought. Sao was in front of the small caravan that held Lord Michael and his small court. Lady Sarah was up front, and seemed not to be all together there. Sao rode up to the lady and kept the silence for a while. “Milady,” she said. “Is everything alright?” Sao had to play this just right, other wise she may not get the answer she was expecting nor wanted. “I was informed before we left Castle Noctè that Lord Michael and I are to wed when we return. An arranged marriage between the Celtics and Spaniards/” I didn’t learn that in any history class. “Is that what you want/” “No, but I shall go through with it for the good of my people/” Sarah looked around as it grew dark. “We shall camp here for the night. Have the men ready the camp,” Sarah instructed Sao. “Of course, Milady.” Sao turned her horse around to inform the escorts of the plan. As she did, Sao found herself fading away.
Sao woke and sat in bed for what seemed like an hour, thinking about this new part of the dream. An alliance between the Celtics and Spaniards? She never heard of a thing; then again, she was taught American history. Finally, she dragged herself out of bed and got dressed. She slid down the railing and headed into the kitchen to eat. She did not know what to make of these dreams. Are they real in the sense it actually happened, or are they just something her subconscious has made up? Sao would have liked to ask lena about what her dreams have told her, but there was no possible way to get a hold of the goddess.
"Hosh, can you take care of the shelter today," Sao asked. "I want to see if I can’t find some things out."
"Thanks. Everything’s written down."
Sao walked into the library with a good amount of paper and a couple of pens. She set her things down and started for the Celtic history section. She spent most of the morning gathering all the books she could before she sat down and started her research. She found out that the Celtics did have an alliance with the Spanish, though it was brief. Lord Michael was found dead two weeks after his marriage with Lady Sarah; not before a child was conceived of the union. The night that Lord Michael died, his body disappeared. Lady Sarah never really recovered and had slipped into the slums of the social ladder. The child, a near mirror image of Sao, was raised by those in the court and was made the crown heir to the throne. Sao used all of the paper she had brought by the time she was finished some hours later. She puts the books in a pile where she sat, gathered her belongings and left for home.
“I can’t believe you didn’t drink it,” Athena shouted. “You know how I feel about other women carrying your children.”
“I didn’t want to let that one go without leaving my mark on her.”
“She wasn’t your to mark. She was for another.”
Athena knew of Sao’s family past. It was pasted down from who the vampires believed to be the father of the vampyre race: Lord Michael. Athena knew part of the plan the vampires had for Sao. They wanted to make her one of them and elevate her to a position where she could challenge Bara to become matron. One thing the vampires have not figured out, or found out, that Sao has become pregnant and having her being bitten now could effect the child. Athena sighed, letting it go. Now, she felt like getting close to Mark. She walked up to him and start to touch him in the way that tied Mark to her as her lover. When Mark looked at Athena, she smiled in a sexy way that was the glue of their relationship.
“Impossible,” Shadow said, looking at the photocopy picture of the child. “There is no way this was you in a past life.”
“That’s what’s bugging me. There is no way that could be me; and what’s bugging me more is that I can’t ask Lena about it.”
Shadow passed the picture around; allowing the others to see it.
“And the two dreams I had really don’t help,” Sao said. “It’s not helping.”
“Couldn’t the Moon Goddess help.”
“Doubt it. At this point in time, I think only time will tell,” Sao said.
“I could make something...” Brandon started.
“Not right now, Brandon. Let’s not involve the immortals just yet.”
“Then I know what could work.”
Athena walked into the vampires’ mountain base like she owned it. She was the one who found it and told the vampires about it. The vampires watched her walk through the base like she was the matron; or next in live to challenge for the position. Of course, she was not, for only female vampires are able to do such a thing. Athena was, of course, the High Witch of all the witches that were in service to the clan. The vampires have strict rules about any in the clan, or those that are in serviced to them, can gain so power. The amount of power was associated to one’s position in the clan or witch culture. Athena’s position as High Witch was parallel to the vampyre matron. Athena walked into the small side audience hall. It was more often used that the larger one; seeing how that one was used more for important ceremonies and other important events. Of course, Bara was with some of her high priestesses. The high priestesses would decide among themselves who would become the next matron, if the current one did not have any daughters. Although, the clan has not have a patron in over two centuries, the highest ranked male, the current one not counted, will become the clan patron. Athena walked right up and stood next to the priestesses. This did not bother the high priestesses since they knew Athena since she was but a child. What did bother them was that the High Witch entered without being summoned nor announced.
“News, Athena,” Bara asked.
“Yes. Sao is pregnant with Mark’s child. I have done my best to see what and how many she is carrying, but it was hazy and difficult to decipher anything. One thing was clear, no matter what gender the child is, or how many she is carrying, they will be the down fall of the clan.”
“Is Mark not your lover,” one of the priestesses asked.
“He is. It was a one time event that will not happen again. Mark knows his place with the witches and vampires.”
“That is good to know, Athena. Do you think you could take the child,” Bara asked.
“I’m not sure. One of the most important things to remember when dealing with the future is that it has infinite possibilities,” Athena answered as truthfully as possible.
“Do what you see fit to do, Athena. I want that child. If there are more than one, I want the oldest one,” Bara instructed.
The vampyre matron was already forming a plan for Sao’s child. Bara dismissed her priestesses and thought of how Sao’s child, or children, could be the downfall of her clan. Only time will tell, and things change in time.
“She does look like a mirror image of you,” Bane said when Sao showed the picture to him.
It was around noon and Sao was still trying to clean in the animal shelter. “What bugs me is that Lena is not here, and I don’t want to ascend to the God’s Plane to ask them just yet,” Sao said.
"You sure? I’m sure the Moon Goddess would be able to help.”
“Why would...” Sao dug out the dirty newspaper and dumped it into the trash. “The Goddess tell me about my family history when she’d say that I should know it.”
“You never know with gods and goddesses,” Bane said.
Sao sighed as she put the small dog back and closed the cage. She took the bag out to the dumpster and walked back in. She was debating whether or not to ascend temporarily to the God’s Plane to seek an audience with the Moon Goddess.
“I’ll go,” she said.
“Some one should go with her,” Rojo said. “Don’t look at me,” Hosh said.
Shadow shook his head.
“I have to be on this end,” Brandon said.
“I’ll go,” Bane said.
“A were...” Shadow started, but a look from Hosh and Sao stopped him.
“Alright. Lets get this done,” Brandon said.
Brandon summoned soft cushions similar to what you would find in India’s past; in the tales of the Mah Maharajahs living in the Taj Mahal. Bane and Sao took the hint and laid side by side. Shadow lowered the lights as Hosh helped Brandon put out and light several types of candles. Finally, Brandon stood over Bane and Sao’s head.
“Close your eyes,” he instructed.
They did so as they heard Brandon start his spells and magic. He has done this once before for a trial that was of little consequence to him. Slowly, Bane and Sao felt themselves leave the Mortal Plane and traveled to the God’s Plane. For what seemed like a life time, the two have found themselves fully ascended on the plane. Bane changed into his tiger pelt before they made their way through the plane. Many of the Gods and Goddesses ignored them. But one did not; the Blood God.
“Be gone, mortals; your kind is not welcomed here,” he said in a deep resounding voice. “We’re looking for the Moon Goddess, not trouble,” Sao said, trying to get past the God.
“She, like many of us, do not tolerate mortals on our plane,” the Blood God said, spatting out the word “mortals. “I do tolerate mortals here if they have come this far,” Serenity said, approaching the small group. “Come, no one will bother us in my home”
Bane and Sao followed the Moon Goddess to her mansion to see those who worked there rushing about. The two travelers were not accustomed to the sight of workers as they followed Serenity into a small sitting room. “Now, what brings you two to the God’s Plane,” the Goddess asked as she sat and motioned to a high back chair for Sao to sit.
“This,” Sao said, pulling out the picture and handed it to Serenity. “The child is a mirror image of myself. She was the only child of Lady Sarah of the Celtics and Lord Michael of Spain. Is there any relation between us?”
Sao sat as Bane laid comfortably by the fire. Serenity looked at the picture Sao handed her for several moments. A servant entered carrying a tray. She sat the tray on the small table and handed a cup and saucer to Serenity first before handing the other to Sao. Serenity wore a long white silk dress that came all the way down to her ankles. Her blonde hair was long and flowing; some always over a shoulder.
“This child was you in a past life,” Serenity finally said as Sao sipped at the wonderful tasting tea. Something she would not drink on the Mortal Plane.
“Me in a past life? I’m not one for reincarnation, Goddess,” Sao said.
“If the child is not a past life, I can say that she was, or is, a relative of yours. I don’t know wat else to tell you than that. She was not a priestess of mine.”
“I was under the idea she was,” Bane finally spoke.
Serenity looked down at Bane, finally recognizing the weretiger. At this point, the Goddess knew she was cornered by the two and sighed.
“Yes, she was high priestess. When she was young, she was taken in by one of my priestesses and was raised in such a way. Does that satisfy you?” Sao sat there, still sipping at her tea.
“Than I will send you and Bane back. I do not wish to have Brandon use more of his energy.”
Serenity allowed Sao to put the tea cup and saucer down before she sent the human and shape shifter back to the Mortal Plan. Sao and Bane slowly opened their eyes to find themselves still on the Indian styled cushions. Brandon threw himself on the nearest couch, nearly falling asleep from the amount of work he did.
“Well, what did you find out,” Shadow asked as Sao sat up.
“That the child was either me in a past life or she’s a distant relative of mine.”
“That narrows it down.”
“It’s better than not really knowing.”
Sao picked herself up from the cushions as Bane finally sat up; still in his tiger pelt. The friends were trying to figure out if Sao was indeed reincarnated or just had a distant relative.
A few days passed before the five friends began to ready the house for the baby. After nearly three months, Wyld Nites has changed from a controlled free-for-all with Lena to being close to a dictatorship with the vampyre clan and witch society. Sao has been starting to show signs of being pregnant. From the bludge that had started to show to other pregnancy symptoms. The others have started taking shifts at the animal shelter to help Sao while working on the house and their jobs. Bara has become more restless, wanting Sao’s child with each passing day. She dared not attempt to bring Sao to the vampyre mountain base; not with her friends and half the city indirectly protecting her. Now that Sao was three months pregnant, Brandon could see what gender the child was. Though no one expected what he found out what was growing in Sao’s womb; triplets. Not just any normal triplets, but dragons. How t hat managed to happen, he did not know, but Brandon knew to inform Sao.
“How did that happen?”
“I’m not sure,” Brandon said.
Sao was shocked to hear that she was carrying dragons. What made the shock worse is that Brandon added an “s” to the end of dragon.
“Three; two boys and a girl.”
Sao sat up on her bed, now in complete mental shock of the news She was not expecting triplets, and the others certainly would not be expecting the news. “I think it’s time that we find a safe haven away from here,” Sao told the witch.
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
It had taken the friends about two weeks to move in, but it took a week to move out. They filled the trailers to the max, but still needed to use the vehicles. Sao’s truck was used to transport the animals and a few odds and ends. Rojo and the man Sao had talked with found a house that would fit all of them. At the end of the week, the friends took apart the home theater system and packed it. None of them like the fact they were leaving the haven, but they had to; the main thing was to protect Sao and the triplets. They turned in early so they could get up early to leave. Bane and a few others were going to take care of the shelter and the house until the friends returned. The next morning, before sunrise, the five friends piled into the vehicles and started for Rain. The city was a day’s drive from Wyld Nites and was the only city of all humans that close to the haven. By nightfall, the friends were moving their things into the house. Though Brandon could not use his moving spell on all of the boxes from the trailers to the house. Everyone spent half the night moving in their belongings and claiming their rooms. They were safe for the time being, though they knew the world outside Wyld Nites was more dangerous than what they left behind.
Bara summoned all of her priestesses, even those still training. She learned that Sao and her friends had left and wanted them found; even if the priestesses had to work night and day. Athena was also summoned to the chamber. The witch walked in and stayed in the shadows until the priestesses were dismissed before she approached.
“Have your witches start looking for them,” the vampyre matron demanded.
“I will not be told what to do with my order, Bara. You rule over the vampires while I rule over the witches. What would happen if I removed all of the support of the witches.”
“While your order is in service to me, you will do my bidding.”
“Then the witch order of Wyld Nites is no longer in service to you,” Athena said. “Lets see how long your magic holds out without the support of the witches.”
With that, Athena left the audience chamber, never to return. The only reason the vampires had magic was because of the witches. Each witch had supported the vampyre that held a similar rank with magic; though the vampyre had the choice. Without that support, the vampires could not perform their magic for much longer.
Sao and Brandon were walking through the hospital for her first ultrasound. She was not all too happy about it, but she agreed to do it. Roughly three months into her pregnancy, the triplets were developing like they should be. An hour passed before the two returned to their new home to continue to unpack and arranged their rooms. Each of the five friends knew it would be difficult living in a world where they were nothing more than stories and fictious lies. Shadow and Rojo became creatures of the night in their dragon forms and bag boys by day. Hosh was hired to be one of the tiger keepers in the zoo a couple of hours away. Brandon was a bartender and Sao stayed home. Months passed without any news from Wyld Nites; which was a double-edged sword. It meant that the vampires were not doing anything serious, but it could be a facade. Now seven months pregnant, Sao was showing that well enough without the constant morning sickness and other pregnancy symptoms. She had reached the pointed when she had to be careful on what she did since anything could result in premature labor. A knock at the door had Sao finishing up the dishes and answered the door. She looked out the front window and saw a woman that looked like her mother. She sighed and opened the door.
“May I help you,” Sao asked.
“I’m looking for Sao. I heard she was living here.”
She doesn’t recognize me, Sao thought.
“She is. Would you like to come in,” Sao asked, kept up the facade of not being home.
“Yes, thank you.”
Sao stepped aside and allowed the woman to enter the house. Her mother walked in and looked around. The living room was set up with Sao’s theater system and a mix of the other’s belongings.
“Quite a place you’ve got here,” Mary said, taking a seat.
Sao went into the kitchen and got two glasses of water and wondered what her mother wanted. She walked back into the living room and handed a glass to her mother before she sat down in an easy chair.
“So, what can you tell me about Sao,” she asked, talking about herself in the third person.
“Well, there’s not much I can tell you. Her father and I sent her to an assassin school. That was the result of her rebellious streak. We did not approve of that behavior she had.”
Mary now saw that Sao was pregnant; what she did not see was the tribal tattoo that was on most of Sao’s abdomen. It was a symbol, of which the meaning was only known to Sao.
“Who’s the father,” Mary asked before Sao could ask a question.
“A man-street walker. It was a mistake on my part; a mistake that won’t happen again,” Sao explained. Mary took a look at the items that were on the mantel and saw Sao’s scimitars on a display stand.
“Those are... Sao?”
Sao sighed and nodded.
“Why didn’t you tell me it was you?”
“Because you would have left if I did.”
“You left before I graduated the school. You’re lucky I don’t cut you down where you sit,” Sao said.
“That would be quite a start for your child. Its mother a killer even before it’s born.”
“It’s my child to raise, not yours. You had your chance and your blew it”
Mary finished her water, sat the glass on a side table, stood and showed herself out. Sao knew her mother had her chance to raise her instead of shipping her to the assassin school. Sao’s threat of killing her mother was not as empty as her mother believed. Sao would kill any who threaten her children. Whether it was her maternal instinct or the fact that her children were dragons, Sao would lie down her own life for them. That night, Sao felt her water break and knew she had to get to the hospital within the hour. Drake flew all over the house, calling out. Shadow grabbed the hospital bag as Sao headed fro the car. The five friends agreed that Shadow would sign as the father since none would allow Mark near Sao. As Sao and Shadow entered the hospital, and orderly took Sao up to the labor and delivery floor in a wheelchair. In the room, Sao changed into a gown and got settled on the bed as Shadow looked out the window over the parking lot.
“Shadow,” Sao said, sounding a bit concerned of the dragon. “What is it?”
“It’s just the fact I’m signing as the father,” Shadow said. He turned and faced Sao.
“Would you rather not sign and just be here for support?”
“Yes, but I’ll sign”
A few hours had passed with Sao contracting and dilating. She stalled when she was about nine centimeters dilated. So she started walking up and down the halls. Two hours later, Sao was ready to push. Shadow was three to help. In minutes, the first of the triplets was born, followed by the second. The were quickly handed off as a problem was realized. The girl’s cord was rapped around her neck, which prevented her from coming through. The doctor managed to get two fingers around the cord and slipped it around the head; which resulted in the infant to rush out. The doctor handed her off to the last infant team. All three infants were healthy and So was resting a couple of hours later. Shadow had signed as the father and was now keeping a vigil over Sao.
“The children have been born,” Heero told Bara. “The oldest is a boy. Do you still wish to take him?”
Heero was the latest of Bara’s patrons. With black spiked hair with red tips, Heero’s eyes were a pitch black that turned crimson red when he got mad. He has sired several generations of vampyres.
“Find out if Sao had a girl. If she did, take her. If not, take the oldest male,” Bara finally instructed.
Heero turned and left the small audience chamber without a sign of respect to Bara. Unlike the legendary Drow, the vampyre clan is almost mirrored by the English Royal Family. Instead of the men in the ruling positions, it was the women who ruled.
Three days have passed and Sao and the triplets returned home. Sao spent her days and nights tending to her children. Nate was the first born and caused some bewilderment with the staff with his ice blue eyes; contrasted by his black hair. Devon was next and shared his brown hair and eyes with his sister Clare. Each had inherited Sao’s “curse” of talking with animals. Snow and Zar were very protective of the triplets. As the years past, the triplets were taught by Rojo and Shadow in how to use their powers. Five years later, Nate, Devon, and Clare were rambunkous and were enrolled in kindergarten. Heero had waited patiently for the perfect time to kidnap Clare. The triplets rushed off and played with their friends the first day of school. Shadow had gotten the siblings ready when Sao return home from work. Sao had gotten work at a local bar as a waitress. Sao took her children to school, unaware that Heero was watching them. Days faded into months and the family grew accustomed to the daily routine. Heero was anxious with each passing day. One day, Clare was out front by herself when Heero drove by. It took him only moments to rush and grab Clare. When Rojo appeared with Nate and Devon, he saw Heero take off with Clare banging on the windows.
Everyone was packing and loading the trailers as Sao took care of taking the triplets out of the school system. They knew who ever took Clare came from Wyld Nites; and now the small group had to rally the whole of the city against the vampyres. At mid-week’s end, the small caravan made its way to Wyld Nites. There was no knowing if there were going into a trap, but they had no choice if they wanted Clare back. In the middle of the night, they arrived at the Victorian house and started to unpack. The boxes were still under the spell Brandon casted all those years ago. Sao and the animals stayed by the truck where Nate and Devon slept.
“Good. Now we need to get Sao,” Bara said.
The vampyre matron studied Clare intently. Now that she had Sao’s daughter, the vampyre could mold the young dragon in her vision. The only thing Bara did not know that Clare was a dragon.
“Nicely done, Heero. You may leave; I will be raising this one myself.”
Heero bowed slightly and left the small audience chamber as Bara began Clare’s training. Bara did not know that Sao and the rest of the family had arrived not that long ago.
Everyone was setting their rooms up when there was several knocks on the door. Sao rushed down and answered it. She saw Athena, who she did not know, with Bane.
“She came to me, saying that the vampires did her, and the witch order that served them, wrong,” Bane said.
“I removed our support nearly five years ago. Yet they still perform their magic,” Athena explained.
Within minutes, everyone was in the living room, ready to have a meeting.
“I have been informed that Bara has a five year old and has started to train the child to become a priestess. I don’t know what the matron is planning, but it’s not good,” Athena said.
“Clare. Bara’s training Clare to become a priestess,” Sao said. “Is there any way into their base?”
“Yes, but it won’t be easy. I can assume that none of you wish to actually become vampires, so the only way is to become witches and be rouges from my order,” Athena said. “I do believe Brandon know how this is done.”
“I do. But the length of time those here who are not witches will not be long enough. If there was a longer length, I don’t know.”
“There is; but each must make a sacrifice; their power.”
“Will we get it back,” Hosh asked after a long silence.
“There is a fifty fifty chance. It will take time to prepare to make the potion that will strip you of your power and make you witches,” Athena said.
“All the while, Bara is turning my daughter into one of her priestesses,” Sao said.
“It’s not wise to rush magic,” Brandon told his friend. “Especially that of witches. Ours is as much of a scene as it is spiritual.”
“Sao has a point,” Rojo butted in. “Bara has taken one of her children and has started training her as a vampyre. There needs to be a rush of some kind.”
As the months passed, Bara continued Clare’s training; essentially brainwashing her; and the two witches worked on the potion. Brandon was right about not rushing magic; seeing how the potion was nearly ready. The two dragons, Hosh, and Sao were worried that once they gave up their power that they would not have them returned. Sao was the most worried about giving up her power of talking with animals. It had allowed her to communicate with other humans. If it was gone, Sao may not be able to talk again.
“Who do we worship,” Bara quizzed Clare.
They were standing in the small audience chamber, Clare started straight ahead, not blinking. Clare wore clothes of a young priestess in training. It was a two piece outfit that looked like a bikini. On her hips was a band with vampyric designs that could be dated back before the formation of the clan. Two piece of dark colored clothes were attached which cover both her lower front and behind. She wore a band that looked like a metal sports bra, kept her modest. She wore no footwear, which made her motions silent. Her arms were behind her back, her right hand in her left.
“The Blood God, Matron,” Clare replied.
Bara made several symbols that were more emblems than mere symbols.
“One of these emblems is yours and yours alone,” Bara explained. “Choose wisely, for each of these emblems is a rank within the clan. I hold the matron and Heero currently holds the patron.” Each emblem was similar to Celtic designs. Clare took her time to decide. She had studied with each rank within the clan; from Bara to the lowest male. She knew each rank’s emblem and finally found one that was near the top of the ranks.
“A priestess always knows a high rank,” Bara said as she took the emblem out of the air. “You may hold one of the top five ranks, but you still have much training in front of you.”
Bara handed the emblem to Clare, who took it and left the audience chamber.
“Sao, come on,” Brandon said. “Clare’s your daughter.”
The potion was ready and all but Sao drank it.
“I’m not drinking it. There’s no way.”
“So, your power...”
“It’s a risk I’m not willing to take. No way.” Out of all the friends, except the two witches and Bane, drank their share of the potion.
Bane knew Sao had a good reason to have refused the potion, though he did not say anything.
Sao, if you don’t drink this, the vampires will kill you,” Athena said. “I’ve seen it happen” “And if I do drink it I won’t be able to speak,” Sao said. “To animals, we know,” Rojo said.
“At all,” Sao corrected. “My power of talking with animals has been my curse. I was only a kid when a witch place the curse on me. She assumed I could speak and took the ability of speaking with humans vocally and replaced it with talking with animals,” Sao explained. “I was born mute and the curse was a blessing. I would love to have the curse lifted, but not at the expense of losing the ability to speak to you guys.”
Everyone fell silent, now knew Sao’s worse fear. There was nothing that could be done about that, nor did Brandon or Athena knew how to avoid this complication.
“Are you sure about that,” Hosh asked.
“It’s the only reason I was able to talk about that day. I went to school before that and did pretty good besides the fact I had to use sign language. The first day of school, when I could talk, everyone wanted to know what happened”
“I wish I knew about this before,” Athena said.
“Isn’t there another potion she could take,” Shadow asked.
“It’s a possibility, but it’ll take at least a month.”
“It’s a month we don’t have.”
“A word about that potion,” Athena said, turning to those who drank it. “You should be able to perform any kind of magic within the hour. I’ll work on one for Sao.”
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
Brandon had made sure that those who had drank the potion knew how to correctly perform spells so they could easily pass as witches while Athena made another potion for Sao. This one was important because it would change Sao from being completely human to being a dragon. The female witch had heard of this happening before; though it was rare for it to happen. This potion was more of a guarantee that Sao would retain her ability to speak. Finally, after another month, the time came when Sao drank the potion that Athena gave her. The young mother drank it and looked around with a look of wonderment; wondering if the effects were immediate.
“Go ahead and see if it worked,” Rojo said.
Sao knew she had to. She found a new presence in her mind and prodded it. Sao felt her body change as she prodded the presence. Her organs shifter positions and new organs grew. Sao felt her skin change into scales; and soon she could not hold the growing weight of a dragon on two legs and fell forward; only to catch herself on her front legs. By the time Sao full changed, only a couple of minutes, she was a young adult Golden dragon.
“A Golden dragon,” Shadow said, amazed. “They’re rare than Black dragons.” “So,” Sao asked, a bit sarcastically.
“So; that means you really need to be careful,” Rojo said.
“We don’t even know what flight my children are.”
Sao changed back into her human form, but had to grab her clothes and dashed into another room to put them on.
“I guess we should have told her about that,” Shadow said.
Sao came back into the room, finished pulling her shirt down.
“Sorry, forgot about that,” Rojo said.
“Next time, I’m putting on form fitting clothes.”
“So, what next,” Rojo asked. “With most of our little family as dragons, our three youngest still hiding their flights, how do we defeat the whole of the vampyre clan?”
“That depends greatly on your ability to get into the heart of the base,” Athena said. “I’m assuming that Bara has been training Clare herself. We get to Bara, we get Clare.”
“Our ability,” Hosh questioned.
“I will not be joining you.”
“Lets get going then,” Brandon said.
The group left the house and headed for the mountains; led by Athena. The two dragons and shape shifter, now temporary witches, were not one hundred percent sure that they would be able to perform any spells they might had to do. Brandon assured them that they would be fine. The group reached the mountains about an hour later, and started to climb; moving around rocks and boulders as they grew closer to the base. Bane was back at the house, keeping a watch on Devon and Nate; Athena was to join him after she left the mountains.
“I will go no further,” Athena said. “I only give you this warning: be careful. The vampires can see in your mind; put up a brick wall and keep it up. Don’t forget where that hidden door is. Sao, this is for you.”
Athena handed Sao a witch pendent.
“I had this made for you. It will combine the dragon powers with some witch powers. Don’t over do it.”
Sao took the pendent and put it on. Once done, the friends continued on their way without Athena. There was a risk that the vampires could realize that those friends were no real witches; it was a risk they were willing to take. As they grew closer to the base, the friend were confronted by two low ranking vampyres on guard duty.
“What’s your business here,” one asked.
“We’re rouge witches from Athena’s order. We wish to join the vampyres,” Shadow said.
The two vampyres looked at each other before one opened the door and led the group into the base. One by one, the friends walked in; Sao bringing up the rear. When the door closed, Sao found her eyes adjusted to the dark faster than she expected. Their vampyre guide led them to the small audience chamber where Bara stood and talked with her high priestess.
“Bara, these are rouges from Athena’s order,” the guard said.
“Thank you, return to your post,” the matron said.
Bara approached the group and studied them as the vampyre left. Whether it was by luck or she did not look at Sao closely, Bara did not see the pendent. “So, you’re here to be apart of the rough witch order that supports our vampyric powers,” Bara questioned. They nodded in fear of saying something that could jeopardize the mission. Bara came up and faced Sao. Something told Sao that she had better put up her brick wall. Bara had tried to look into Sao’s mind, though Sao managed to keep the wall up until Bara retreated.
“Very well,” Bara said. “Clare.”
Clare walked into the audience chamber. Each of the friends were surprised at the clothing she was wearing. She wore clothes of a young priestess in training. It was a two piece outfit that looked like a bikini. On her hips was a band with vampyric designs that could be dated back before the formation of the clan. Two piece of dark colored clothes were attached which cover both her lower front and behind. She wore a band that looked like a metal sports bra, kept her modest. She wore no footwear, which made her motions silent. Sao fought the urge to rush over to her daughter.
“See to it that they are given their own chamber,” Bara instructed.
The five year old led the small group down a corridor toward the chambers. Once they were far enough away from the audience chamber, Sao grabbed Clare at her shoulders and spun her daughter around.
Clare looked at Sao for several moments before she spoke.
“You are not my mother, Bara is.”
“Bara is a vampyre, not a dragon.”
“Nor are you.”
“Yes, I am.”
That was n undecided cue to Brandon and the others to put up a barrier while Sao changed into her dragon form. Sao looked at her daughter and waited to see if Clare attempted to change. She did not, though something clicked in Clare before Sao changed back into her human form. The five year old continued to lead them to their chambers. All of their chambers were either next to each other, or across the corridor; Clare left them and went to perform her duties. Each chamber had what nearly every witch wanted. Though none were interested in what their chambers contained; they knew that their little Clare was in that Clare Bara created.
“That was a bit risky,” Hosh said. “Going into your dragon form.”
“Clare knows she’s a dragon. All she needed was to see another. Now we need to make sure it is truly Clare and leave the base with her without letting the vampires know of our plans,” Sao said.
“Lets hope they don’t realize who we are as well,” Shadow said.
“Whatever happens, we should see this bas in its entirety,” Rojo said. “Brandon, why don’t you go with Sao while the rest of us goseparate ways.”
The friends nodded and left the chamber they gathered in. They knew this was dangerous, but it was more dangerous for Clare. They took much of their first day and explored the base. At day’s end they were summoned to the small audience chamber by Bara. There stood five vampyres, one for each of the five friends.
“Each of you will magically support one of these vampyres,” Bara explained. “They will choose whom they wish to be supported by.”
Each of the vampyres looked at each of the friends; studied them from head to toe. Minute by minute passed until each vampyre, mainly all females, chose their supporter. The last vampyre had no choice but to go with Sao.
“It is done. Each of you will be moved to a larger chamber where your bonds will be given the change to grow.”
Two low ranking vampyres appeared and led the group of ten to a new area of chambers. Once there, each witch and vampyre team were able to begin their bond. Sao was not comfortable in this situation; seeing how the vampyre that was paired with her was male. The vampyre seemed to know and kept his distance. Hours passed before the base finally settled down to sleep. The friends had chosen a room that appeared not to have been use in quite a while; to which the friends now made their way now. They had found their little Clare, but to what extent of her brainwashing they did not know.
“We know Clare is safe, but how to make sure we can leave with her is the question,” Rojo said.
“When I was five,” Shadow said. “I could change into my dragon form. Perhaps Clare could do the same”
“You sure,” Sao questioned.
“If she’s anything like her mother on her first time, Clare will do fine,” Shadow said; which resulted in Sao smiling at the comment.
“Lets see if we can’t find the tike,” Brandon said. “Just be careful.”
The friends quietly left the chamber and began their search for Clare. There were few vampyres about, and they were far between; still the friends were careful. A patrol halted them for what seemed like an hour before they moved off again. Sao guided them through what seemed like a power that was there when she gained the power of changing into a dragon. Or it could have just been her maternal instinct. Finally, they found Clare’s chamber; and the wide awake five year old. She rushed over to Sao; who had knelt down to embrace her daughter. The spent a minute to reunite before Sao stood.
“We should go,” Brandon said in a hushed, hurried voice. “I think a patrol realized we weren’t in our rooms.”
“Clare,” Sao said, kneeling down to look at her daughter. “I need you to do something. Look for your magic and focus on what your dragon form is. There is not much time.”
Clare closed her eyes and focused on the magic that would allow her to change into her dragon form. Clare found her body changed into a dragon. Within minutes, Clare stood before her family as a Bronze dragon.
“Bronze,” Shadow and Rojo whispered together.
Sao looked at them, which both shook their heads in that “We’ll tell you later” no. Sao thought about doing the same, but opted not to. She was believed to be a witch and wanted to keep it that way for a little while longer. The ability to shape shift would raise a higher alarm than the one they might raise if they did not leave at that moment. Clare changed back and was placed in the middle of the group as they swiftly and silently made their way to the side entrance Athena told them about. Before they could, Heero appeared before them.
“So, we finally meet,” Heero said. “An impressive feat, all of your. Getting into the base poising as witches. What makes you think you could just walk out with one of our prized priestesses?”
“What makes you think you can turn her into a priestess of the Blood God,” Sao shot back.
“It’s not me you should worry about,” countered the patron. “Bara is relentless for ultimate rule over Wyld Nites.”
“There is nothing that would make us believe you,” Rojo said.
“No, there isn’t.”
“Then there isn’t anything holding us here,” Sao said. Sao started for the door, but was stopped by Heero.
“There is. Bara placed a tracking spell on Clare. The matron will know wherever she goes. Only Bara knows the counter spell.”
“Than take me to her,” Sao demanded.
Heero led the group into the small audience chamber. Bara looked like she aged tenfold in the few hours the friends had been at the base. She looked like years of sickness were close to taking her life.
“Bara,” Heero said.
She turned to see the group; with Clare among them as she slowly walked over to face them. She came up and looked Sao right in her eyes.
“I know you from some where,” the vampyre said. “But I don’t know where.”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about, matron. Though, I would like to ask you something. I heard that you had placed a spell on this child,” Sao said, motioning for Clare to come to her side. “Would you please lift it?”
Bara looked down to Clare, who had her eyes on the floor. With whatever that was destroying her mind, Bara nodded. Minutes passes as Bara performed the counter spell on the five year old.
“There,” the matron said. “It is complete. She will remain to complete her training. As for you, young witch. I wish for you to be the next matron.”
Heero was taken back by this statement. For over two hundred years, Bara has been matron, and it was expected that Bara’s oldest daughter Viccy would assume the role of Matron. Bara waved Heero off and motioned for Sao to follow.
Get out and take Clare, Sao mentally told Shadow as she followed Bara.
The group left the chamber, leaving Sao with the sick matron. Several moments of silence passed as Bara studied the runes on the wall.
“I’m weak,” she finally said. “My daughter Viccy will not take the matron role unless I’m dead. I need some one to succeed me until that time comes. I want you to take it.”
“But I’m only a witch.”
“The vampyre that has chosen you will explain how it works. Wait for my summons, you may leave.”
Sao nodded and left the chamber. Down the corridor, she saw Heero escorting the group to the same door he caught the, at. By the time she caught up with them, Rojo was out the door with Clare. She turned to face Heero.
“Why are you helping us,” Sao asked.
“What Bara has done is unforgivable. Especially since she had taken your little princess and attempted to use her against you. Myself and a few of the other vampires will be your agents in this war,” Heero said.
“Thank you.” Sao smiled and went through the door, which Heero closed. He knew that the vampires that approached him would like to know about this change of loyalty.
Alyesia and Fyren were among the first vampires that joined Heero against Bara; followed by others of various ranks and witches. Alyesia was the second daughter of Bara and was expected to become matron once Bara died. She stood about five feet three inches, with black hair and dark blue eyes. On her abdomen and upper arms were ancient Irish tattoos. Fyren was different; with blonde hair that was in layers that was at his shoulders, which was tied back for the time being. He stood about five feet six inches and his dark blue eyes could make women want him. Though, in these times, that was far from his mind.
“So it is true,” Alyesia said. “Sao and her friends had rescued Clare.”
“Yes. And Bara is still unaware of it. The important thing now is to make sure that they remained protected,” Heero said. “Fyren, can you and some of our members keep watch over Sao and her family?”
“Of course. They will be protected, Heero.”
The group arrived at the Victorian house within a couple of hours. Sao was in her dragon form above them, watching for any that would be following. She landed in the front yard and changed into her human form. Clare was riding her mother and was now in her arms sleeping. All were relieved once they stepped into the house as the sun rose. Those who were watching over Devon and Nate were sleeping in any of the unused rooms. For the time being, everyone was safe in their own beds.
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
After a few hours of sleep, everyone was drinking their choice of caffinated beverages while listening to the silence of the house. They all knew the group came close to being killed by Bara. Now, the time for Devon and Nate to change into their dragon forms; and for the triplets to learn about the different dragons. The two dragons and Hoshiko regained their original powers, though Sao had some how managed to retain her dragon form and her cursed blessing. In the after noon, Shadow took the two boys out in the back where the others were already. Mainly resting in the sun while sitting on one of the pool chairs or actually swimming. Clare was trying to master changing into her dragon form when the trio came out. When the two boys changed, the Black and Red dragons were surprised.
“Bronze dragons,” Shadow told Sao, who was watching near by. “Our dragon family’s growing. Rojo as the resident Red, myself and Suko as Black dragons.”
“Suko,” Sao questioned.
“She’s one of the people who watched the boys,” Shadow said. “Yourself as the resident Gold, the two boys as Bronze, and Clare as the Copper.”
Devon and Nate ere rough housing in their dragon forms as Clare now tried out her wings. The time she spent in the vampyre base shook her to a degree; she saw things no one should. So, when Clare joined her brothers in rough housing, they were shocked.
“Now. There are two main dragon groups that contain four dragon flights,” Shadow said. “Though stories and myths show us as cold-blooded and one set of eyelids, there are two sets of eyelids and we’re warm-blooded. There are exceptions to the different breath weapons than what we tell you. And our horns are signs of ranks within our societies.”
“Will you joust get to the flights,” Rojo said.
“Alright, the Chromatic dragons are the Reds, Greens, Blues, and Blacks. Rojo, seeing how you’re the resident Red, you go ahead.”
Rojo put his book down and shifted his position before he began.
“The Reds are the best known of all dragons. In medieval times, we were the most aggressive and battle hungry. Many of use prefer fresh meat when we’re in our Dragon form. Our fire breath is the hottest in the world. So hot, even diamonds can’t stand the inferno. The Greens are the smallest of the Dragons, next to the Coppers, and are the smallest of the Chromatic Dragons. The scales are an emerald color and love fresh meat like the Reds; but are less picky and will scavenge dead carcasses. Their weapon is an acidic gas; which I heard is extremely painful,” Rojo said.
“The Blues are mainly solitary beings and can be pretty grumpy if they are disturbed. Their scales are a brilliant azure; and they prefer their meat roasted to a crisp; going weeks without eating. Bolts of lighting are their breath weapon,” Shadow said. “And the last of the Chromatic Dragons are the Blacks. They are the least trusted, but most awe inspiring of all Flights. We’re the biggest of the flights, followed by the Golds. We prefer to eat rotten meat and love to scavenge. Our absolute favorite food is rotten fish; we’d even go as far as eating the flesh of other dragons. In battle, we’re the Dragon’s version of the Marines; the last to leave a battle. Our breath weapon is a stream of highly corrosive acid.”
“And the other Dragons,” Hosh asked.
She and Brandon had joined the other in the backyard as Shadow and Rojo were explaining the Chromatic Dragons. Now that the majority of those living in the house were dragons, they figured they too should know about the different flights.
“The Metallic Dragons,” Rojo said. “Gold, Silver, Bronze, and Copper.”
“The Golds are the second largest Dragons; and definitely are the rarest of all flights; and the other Dragons consider them to be the wisest of all us. They’re very picky eaters, preferring either fresh meat or fish. Their weapon’s a powerful jet of flame; though not as strong as the Reds. The Silvers are highly social Dragons, and they are well known to breed with other flights. They hate war and violence, but are skilled warriors if needed. They love fish, especially if it’s fresh; but are happy to scavenge it. Now, their weapon is frost and snow; launching it as shards of ice or frost that will permanently freeze their target within a solid piece of ice.”
“The Bronze Dragons are like the Reds, seeking the thrill of battle. But where the Red lie in brute strength, the Bronze lie on the amazing dexterity and grace while airborne. They prefer fresh meat but will have the occasional fish as well. And like the Blues, they have lighting as their weapon,” Rojo picked up. “Finally, the Coppers. They are the second smallest of the flights. They share the love of scavenging with the Blacks; but like some fresh meat from time to time. If it’s rotten, it’s meat they like, not fish. Like the Gold and Red, the Coppers have a fire weapon, but it’s a liquid and not a gas.”
“Wow,” Sao said. “And I know how to use my weapon.”
“Yes. As an adult dragon, you know, or should, everything on being a dragon; as will the triplets. The only thing the four of you need to concentrate on is learning magic. It’s all about learning to become a dragon.”
The triplets began their training with Shadow while Sao began hers with Rojo. This continued for several weeks, each learning how to use their respected magic. At the end of the sixth month, the dragons, Sao and her children, were considered to be real dragons. They celebrated such an occasion with the triplets’ sixth birthday; nearly seven and a half months after Clare was rescued from the vampyre base. The party was nothing more than the close friends, those who lived in the house, and their friends. The triplets had normal gifts any six year old would want. They ran around with their gifts, playing while the adults talking like what has happened in the pas seven or so months did not happen. Talk of things to come and their good luck spree dominated the talk ended when Athena ran into the room.
“There’s a group entering the city. The appear to be werewolves,” the witch said.
“Werewolves,” Devon said as he and his siblings sat down to breath. “Like Hikku?”
“I don’t think so, kid. They seem to be on the war path; bent on destroying anything and everything that stand in their way. I don’t know what they want, but it may not be.” Athena was cut off by a knock on the door. Everyone fell silent and looked around; wondered who was going to answer the door. Sao shrugged and headed for the front door. She opened it and saw a tanned skinned person standing there with a black hair male behind her.
“May I help you,” Sao asked.
“We heard that the vampires here have laid claim on the city. We’re here to help,” the woman said.
“Okay. Before I, or any of my friends, can trust you, I need our names.”
“I’m Ai’letha, and this is Ramu. We’re the Alpha par of the Black Saber werewolf pack from Egypt,” Ai’letha said.
Sao studied the two before she allowed them in and led them into the living room. The ones who were already there remained silent as they studied the two guests.
“We have talked with the city’s werewolves and they told us what had happened,” Ai’letha said as she remained standing. “And my pack would like to assist you in your fight against the vampires.”
“What makes you think you can handle these vampires,” Shadow asked. “They’ve kidnapped once; it’ll lead to some one’s death next”
“All the same. We wish to join your fight against them”
Everyone looked at each other, unsure of what to say.
“We could use more help,” Hosh said. “Besides, the vampyres’ll freak when they hear who’s just arrived”
“How many in your pack,” Sao asked.
The next morning, shortly after eight in the morning, Sao was with Ai’letha and Ramu, looking for a house that could hold the whole pack. Unfortunately, the only house that Sao knew that could do that was the Victorian. They’ve looked for hours, until they grew hungry. They stopped in at one of the restaurants for a decent lunch.
“After all that, and still no house,” Ramu complained.
“It’ll take time,” Sao said. “Not everyone’s lucky to have a house ready when you arrive.”
“That’s happened,” Ai’letha asked, a bit surprised.
For nearly all of her life, Ai’letha has live in a state of high comfort as a noble of England, which had followed her Greek, Roman, and Egyptian lives.
“Yeah. To me; over six years ago. The Victorian house was basically empty; except for the large pieces of furniture,” Sao said. “Don’t worry, we’ll find one for you guys.”
After their lunch arrived, the trio left their discussion of houses alone and talked of other things. Ai’letha and Ramu told Sao of their pasts, to a point, and Sao informed them of what has happened in the past six years. The rest of the afternoon, they looked at all the houses and finally found one before the day ended.
“This is great,” Ai’letha said. “Enough rooms for everyone in the pack.”
“It’s large enough to hold five families,” Ramu said, reading the flyer. “So it says. Well?”
“We’ll take it,” Ai’letha said.
“Very well,” the realtor said. “Here are the keys; you can move in any time.”
The realtor handed over the keys to Ai’letha and left the house.
“Ramu, go inform the pack that we have a place to stay for a while,” the Alpha female instructed.
Ramu nodded and left the house to gather the pack. Ai’letha looked around and knew that Wyld Nites has become their new home. Sao rubbed her eyes of the sleep that was slowly coming onto her.
“Well, I’m off,” Sao said, heading for the door. “What? Why?”
“I’m tired and I need to head into the shelter in the morning.”
“At least allow one of my werewolves to escort you back to your home. Vampyres and werewolves have always been in a war and none will dare attack you.”
Sao looked outside and saw that it was well after dark. She would had said no, but then she would have to explain why.
“Sure. Though, I’ve got to tell you something. A few of the vampires have become agents against the clan.”
“And you didn’t bother telling me?”
“Well, I didn’t see the need to until now.”
“How did this come about?”
“Bara kidnapped my youngest child and attempted to turn her into a priestess of Hadrian. Myself and the friends you met last night got in as witches and managed to rescue her. Heero, the current patron, helped us,” Sao explained.
“Wow. The vampyres have grown bold. But must you trust them as agents.”
“To a point. I’ve learned everyone is to be trusted to a point.”
Ramu walked into the house, followed by the pack. Sao saw that they were mainly Egyptians and Romans. Not the modern people, but from the ancient civilizations. Each of them greeted Sao with respect, as if she was one of their own. Ai’letha explained the situation that Sao told her not two minutes ago, and then asked for a willing escort to take Sao home. The youngest member, a male about a thousand years old, accepted the offer. The two left the house and started down the street to Sao’s home. From a distance, Alyesia watched Sao and the young werewolf walk toward her. She heard that a pack of werewolves were new to the city and wondered if Sao convinced them. The vampyre jumped down to the street and in a flash, was just feet away from the two.
“Sao, word of Bara’s health,” Alyesia said. “She grows more ill everyday and she questions your whereabouts. And word is that several werewolves have arrived.”
Sao knew what Alyesia meant by mentioning the pack.
“They heard what happened and came to help,” Sao explained. “Ancient Egyptians and Romans. As for my whereabouts...” Sao continued down the street with Alyesia by her side and the werewolf behind them. “I’ve been in another city visiting my relatives, and is unsure of an expected return.”
“Are you sure about that story.”
“Yep. I don’t have a better one.”
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
The trio reached the Victorian house, and the werewolf made his way back to the pack house. Sao and Alyesia entered the house, but remained in the foyer. “There’s no knowing what could happen if one of the other priestesses claim the matron position. Bara wants you as the next matron,” Alyesia said. “Things are going bad inside the clan. Bad enough that it could crumble. If it does, there’s no knowing who might try to take control of the city if that happens,” Alyesia said, expressed her feelings.
“And here I thought Wyld Nites was a safe city,” Sao said with a smile.
Alyesia just smiled back and left the house as Sao headed up stairs to turn in for the night. For the first time since arriving in Wyld Nites, over six years ago, the friends slept in peace. There were no threats that were on them, and the triplets were safe.
In the vampyre base, Bara has barely left her chamber. Viccy has taken the role of Matron tempo and was waiting for her mother to give the title to her. She had heard of a growing number of vampyres were agents to an outside force; whom exactly she was not sure. When Viccy became Matron, she knew her mother’s priestesses would be nothing more than vampyres in the low rungs of the clan society. Her life was nothing but being obedient and submissiveness. Though she was the oldest of Bara’s daughters, Viccy was born before Bara was matron; which resulted in her rank for much of her life. Now, Viccy walked through the base with the highest ranking male, under Heero, just a couple of steps behind her. He has been loyal to her ever since the day they met. When they passed Bara’s chamber, all of the priestesses were seen in there; working with the knowledge that if the Matron died, the would be no more than lowly vampyres. Viccy paid them no mind as she continued on her way.
Sao woke before the sun rose and felt like she was a new person. Whether it was the peace of the early morning or the fact that everyone had a good night sleep that they had not had in months, but for the first time since she arrived, Sao felt at peace. Shadow walked into her chamber and saw Sao on her room’s balcony. For the past few years, he had feelings for the young mother. He has been like a father to them, while Rojo and Brandon were uncles, and Hosh was the loveable aunt that served as a protector in her were tiger form. Shadow came up behind her and placed the blanket he took off Sao’s bed on her shoulders. She looked over her right shoulder to see the Black dragon standing there.
“You shouldn’t be out here in this cold without some thing on to keep you warm,” he said.
“I’m fine,” she replied.
She remained faced out, looking at the sunrise. Sao never really got this type of attention from any guy. So, why was Shadow giving her this kind of attention? The two of them stood there, watched the sun rise. It was a bright red and pink that seemed to outline the few clouds in the sky. The sky’s color faded from black, through a dark blue to its familiar light blue. From outside the opened room door, noises were heard as the others began to wake and go about their morning routine. Winter in the western United States was warmer than the rest of the country. True, it was a little cooler than what it would be in the summer months, Sao was used to the cold; having had lived in the eastern part of the country for several years.
“We should go get ready for the day,” she said.
She was still a bit unsettled after all these years; after being raped by Mark. Though she felt safe with Shadow there with her, she still was not ready to admit to herself that she wanted a husband. Sao turned to go back inside, but Shadow stepped in front of her. Sao looked up to his face, which resulted in a smile. Shadow leaned in and lightly kissed Sao’s lips. The suddenness of the action took Say by surprised; but strangely enough, she returned the kiss. They stood there and kissed for a minute before Sao finally pulled away. “Now, we should really get ready for the day,” she whispered.
She pushed Shadow out of her room and closed the door. Sao turned and leaned back against it and sighed. Never before did she tasted a kiss like that before. The Kiss of a Dragon was rumored to have healing properties; even had the ability to bring some one back from death. Sao showered and dressed before she went down stairs and joined the others who were eating breakfast. Shadow sad nothing to Sao when she walked into the kitchen. One of Casey’s “arms” handed Sao a plate of hot pancakes and sausage.
“Thought you’d might be hungry,” the compute said.
Sao took the plate and got a fork and sat down where she could easily pour herself a glass of milk and syrup on her pancakes. She dug into her breakfast as Rojo took the kids to the school. Hosh and Brandon went to work, and Shadow stayed at home until Sao was ready to leave for the shelter. In truth, he wanted to kiss Sao again; but did not know how to do so after what happened in her room. For over six years, he got to know Sao not only as a woman, but as some one who would do any thing to protect those she loved. Sao looked up as she took a drink, and saw the Black dragon looking at her. “
Shadow shook his head, which cleared his thoughts from his mind.
“Nothing. Come on, I’ll take you to the shelter.”
Sao swallowed the last bit of sausage and washed it down with the last of her milk. She knew Casey would take care of breakfast. The two of them left the house, being watched by Bane. The were tiger has been secretly watching those who resided in the Victorian home. After they returned with Clare nearly eight months ago, the were tiger had been a silent and invisible protector of the triplets. Though much had changed for the city; the vampyres taken control of the city and nearly destroyed the way of life, and it seemed like the citizens were slowly returning to their old way of life.
At the shelter, Sao was cleaning out the cages that still had animals in them. There was little to do since much of her business was the humans who were forced to move to Rain. The remaining animals were strays and pets that were abandoned when their owners moved. Drake was keeping watch in the front as Sao cleaned the cages. Things seemed to be going back to the way it was, but Sao knew better. If what she knew about vampyres and werewolves, Sao knew this war could last longer than any of they planned. Only Lena’s return could prevent the bloodiest battle in this entire war. The door chimed sounded as Sao finished the last cage. She put the kitten back in and closed the door before she went out front. A young girl, no older than the triplets, was standing by the counter. She wore torn and ragged clothes that looked like they were thread bare and was in need of a good washing. She was curiously looking at Drake, who was minding his own business on the counter.
“Can I help you,” Sao asked.
Her voice startled the child, who appeared to have jumped. The girl looked like she had not bathed in at least a week, and smelled like it has been two.
“I wanna pet,” the girl said. “A kitty.”
Sao wondered if the should allow this girl to have a pet. As she thought that, the girl reached into a pocket and pulled out a handful of coins she found.
“I have money; see.”
Sao knew that what the young girl had was no where near enough for a kitten. She did not see any way that this young girl could get a pet; unless.
“What’s your name,” Sao asked as she knelt down.
“Don’t have one.”
“Well, we’ll just have to give you one.”
“I get a name?”
“Yeah. What do you think of... Bobbi?”
“I like it. But...”
“You still want that kitten, don’t you/”
Bobbi nodded, with what looked like a tear in her eye.
“Well, how about this. I have a home you can come and live in. I have friends, and triplets that are about your age.”
“You can be a part of my family.”
“A family? With brothers and sisters.”
Bobbi beamed, she was so glad she had a family, she put the coins back into her pocket as she followed Sao into the back. When Sao opened the door, Bobbi was confronted by the barking of the dogs and puppies. Bobbi was slightly over whelmed by the volume of stray or abandoned pets.
“Go ahead and pick one,” Sao said.
Bobbi went for her pocket, but Sao held up a hand.
“Consider it a present.”
Bobbi smiled as she started looking among the kittens. Some remained where they were in one of the back corners while others came to the cage door and was interested in the young five year old. Finally, Bobbi saw a couple of black cats and was instantly drawn to them.
“These two,” she said.
Sao opened the cage door, took out the two cats, and handed them to her youngest daughter.
“Drake,” she called.
The Red Tail flew in and landed on Sao’s arm. Bobbi was surprised that the bird actually responded to Sao’s call. What surprised her even more is that Sao actually spoke like a bird to Drake.
“Don’t worry, he won’t hurt you.”
“You spoke like a birdie.”
“It’s a gift. What would you say about we head home?”
“Yeah. You can meet your brothers and sister. And my friends/”
Sao led the way out to the front with Drake on her shoulder. In the parking lot, after Sao locked up, she helped the five year old into the back of her truck and strapped her in. Bobbi was eageredly taking all of this in. Sao started the truck and headed home. Once there, the triplets rushed out to greet their mother. Drake cawed when he was ignored; though Devon did finally turn his attention to the hawk.
“Mommy, who’s that,” Clare asked.
Now Devon and Nate saw Bobbi, who was standing behind Sao. She used an arm to bring Bobbi out from behind her.
“This is Bobbi. How would you like it if you had a younger sister/”
“A younger sister,” Clare said, nearly jumping with joy.
Clare smiled and bounced excitedly back into the house. Devon was glad that he had a younger sister other than Clare. Sao closed the truck doors and followed Nate into the house. Nate was also glad he had another sibling; even if she was adopted. Inside, Hosh saw Clare running upstairs with a child she had not seen before. Devon came in a few seconds later, followed by his brother and mother.
“Sao, who’s that child that came in with Clare,” she asked.
“Bobbi. She came into the shelter wanting a kitten. Apparently she had no family and no name; what was I suppose to do?”
“Apparently what you did; bring her here/”
“Who’s here,” Brandon asked, entering the living room from the foyer.
“A young girl,” Hosh answered. “Sao brought her here to be part of the family.”
“It seems so,” Sao said as the three friends headed into the small kitchen. “She didn’t even have a name when she walked into the shelter. Does now; it’s Bobbi.”
“I’m sure Clare’s overjoyed about having a sister,” Brandon said. “I’ll go see what I can do in Clare’s room.”
With that, Brandon headed up the stairs that led from the kitchen to the second floor to Clare’s room. Sounds of the rest of the other friends coming home filled the house. The two male dragons could be heard laughing.
“Sounds like the guys had a good day,” Hosh said as she sat down at the table with a glass of water. “Sure does. Wonder how they’d react to Bobbi.”
Clare and Bobbie came bounding in at a cue, which seemed to have been Hosh’s mention of the five year old, from the kitchen to second floor stairs.
“Mommy, where’s the bath stuff,” Clare asked.
“In the third bathroom, hon.”
The two girls ran back upstairs as Rojo and Shadow walked into the kitchen.
“What’s up with you two,” Sao asked.
She pushed herself up onto a spot on the counter as a bottle of soda pop appeared within her reach. Rojo pulled out a bottle of water from the refrigerator, and Shadow set down at the table. Again to Sao, it seemed like in several years, it was like things were not on the fringes of war. Brandon appeared a few minutes later to find the four friends laughing.
“Well, Clare’s room’s finished,” he said.
“It is,” Rojo said, a bit confused.
“Yeah. We have a new addition to the family,” Brandon said. “A little girl; Sao gave her a name: Bobbi. She’ll be staying in Clare’s room.”
Later that night, the children were put to bed, Bobbi wore some of Clare’s clothes until either Hosh or Sao could taking her shopping. The five friends were arguing over which of Sao’s movies to watched. They finally gave up around ten to turn in for the night. Sao changed into more comfortable clothes to sleep in before she stepped out onto the balcony. She felt like she had some hand in making this city as she looked out over it. Sao felt some sort of connection with Bane the first time they met; but even after al these years, she still has not found the source of that connection.
And probably never will, Sao thought.
She turned and went back into her room. When she turned from closing the balcony doors, she saw Serenity standing in the middle of her room.
“This police action of the vampyres is destroying the city,” the goddess said.
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.
Sao did not know what to say to the goddess. She remembered when she and Bane traveled to the God’s Plane to talk with Serenity. So, why was she standing before Sao?
“And to have these young children involved in it will surely be the end of their lives,” Serenity said. “Do you want that for your children.”
“I will not become my mother, Serenity. I will not send them off like my mother did to me,” Sao said. “It will be up to them, not me.”
“Even so, the vampyres have a new matron; Viccy. She is worse than her mother and it is possible she might not only kidnap your children, she just might kill them,” the moon goddess said. “They are more safe here than they would be any where else. Even with the vampyric control. And I won’t be having any immortal telling me how to make choices,” Sao said. “Now, leave before the others come in here believing I’m talking to myself.”
Serenity disappeared like a cloud moved in front of the moon. Sao did not like having others instructing her how to live her life. She tried to put this conversation out of her mind as she climbed into bed.
The next morning, Sao woke to find the balcony doors open and the curtains blowing gently in the wind. Her conversation with Serenity was still with her; perhaps it held some meaning to it. Until her children were in real mortal danger, Sao would not move them from Wyld Nites. She got dressed and went down stair to join the others. Shadow was teaching the triplets how to breath fire with Bobbi as an observer. The triplets had accepted Bobbi as a sister, even though no one really knew where she came from. Alyesia had arrived about an hour after Sao woke to talk with the human turned dragon and Bane with a status report on the vampyres.
“It’s true. Bara died two days ago and Viccy began her rule. Even though she held the throne and title of matron for two days. It has been nothing but ridding the clan of Bara’s priestesses and appointing her own,” Alyesia said. “We most defeat Viccy in order to restore peace and justice to the city. She knew the prophecy that was told over two thousand years ago in Feudal Japan,” Alyesia said. “What prophecy,” Brandon asked.
“After all this time, you still haven’t hear it? It was prophesized in Feudal Japan that a group of five friends will band together those under the oppression of the Blood Demons. We know that whoever made the prophecy had gone back into time; willingly or not. So, Blood Demons must be...”
“Vampyres,” Sao said.
The others looked at her.
“What? It wasn’t like they could have actually used the word. Could they?”
“I don’t know, I’m not an expert on Feudal Japan. Though... I do know some one who is. I haven’t heard from him in a while.”
The children cam bounding into the living room, chasing each other. Alyesia felt something was different about Bobbi. As they bounded out of the room, Alyesia turned only to Sao.
“That little one, where did you find her?”
“She walked into the shelter a couple weeks ago; wanting a kitten. No name and no parents/”
“What’s her name now?”
“Bobbi. I have a feeling that she’s not really human.”
“She’s half werewolf. The only reason she hadn’t shown any signs is because she hadn’t reached puberty yet.”
“Which explained why I felt something was different about her; she’s part animal for a lack of a better word,” Sao said.
“If I were you, I’d let Ai’letha and the rest of the pack take care of her. There’s no knowing what a half werewolf in puberty would do,” Alyesia advised them all. “She’ll be staying with us,” Rojo said before Sao could. “Bobbi is a part of this family now and nothing short of death will separate her from the triplets.”
“Very well,” Alyesia said, standing. “I’ll inform Ai’letha of Bobbi and your wishes.” Alyesia showed herself out, which left the friends sitting there, silent. The news that Bobbi was half werewolf was a bit of a shock. Two weeks ago, she was an orphan that wondered into Sao’s shelter; now she was a loved member of the family.
“I want the one they call Sao,” Viccy demanded. “Now. She has caused me enough trouble.”
The new matron of the clan has her hands full. She still needed to find the vampyres that had become agents against the clan. Viccy would not stand for betrayers in the clan; especially if they were working with the vampyres’ sworn enemy; the werewolves. It seemed that a decent sized werewolf pack had arrived in the city, and Viccy wanted to drive the pack from the city. She had plans for the city, and they did not included the other species. She wanted to make Wyld Nites the first ever vampyre haven. The first species Viccy wanted to rid the city of is the werewolves, followed by those who are not bent to her will. But first, she must build up her priestess line. As night fell, the city fell into its nightly routine, Viccy took her patron into her chamber. It was important that she solidified her position by producing a heir; a daughter was expected.
In the Victorian home, the children are put to bed, with some arguments of course. Sao used a bit of magic to produce a room version of Aurora Borealis for them; which aided in them falling asleep. Finally, Sao managed to leave the children and headed down stairs and saw her friends beginning a movie with refreshments. She took a free spot next to Shadow, who handed her a bucket of popcorn and a cup of soda pop. It had been a couple of days since the two of them shared a kiss that was not expected by either of them; and bother wondered if the other would accept the other. Before the friends knew it, they were turning in for the night. When Sao and Shadow stopped at her room, they faced each other and wondered if they should kiss. Slowly, Shadow leaned in and when it seemed they were about to kiss, Sao stopped him by putting a hand to his mouth.
“I’m not ready,” she said.
“But the other day.”
“I don’t know what came over me. But I’m not ready for that kind of commitment just yet.”
Sao opened her bedroom door, side stepped Shadow into her room, and closed the door; which left Shadow in the hallway. Shadow was not sure how Sao felt about him. He knew he loved her, but what of her feelings toward him? Shadow found himself in his own room. He did not even realize that he made his way there, he was so wrapped up in thinking about Sao. She had grown from the care-free eighteen year old he net nearly seven years ago to one who was doing her best to protect her children. Shadow wanted to protect her with his own life, but Sao could take care of herself and the Black dragon wondered if she would take the protection. Whatever Sao’s feelings for him, Shadow would lay down his life for her.
Sao stood on the other side of the door, waited for Shadow to come in. When the door did not open, she sighed and went to her bed where her black sweatpants were. She changed into them before she climbed into her bed; which had never really been made. Sao wanted Shadow to come in after her. She has gotten used to the fact that things will not get better any time soon. Her children are still in danger, and Rojo and Shadow were doing their best to train the triplets. Though one thing still weighed on Sao’s mind; how would Bobbi play into all of this? She knew the five year old was half werewolf, but did Bobbi know that? Sao fell asleep dreaming of a peace that seemed that will not come.
Five Years Later
Five years had passed, and all aged accordingly. The children were turning into young teenagers. The triplets were dealing with becoming dragons while Bobbi’s werewolf side was becoming apparent as she wanted to be out at night and tried to avoid the full moon light. Viccy had solidified her position as matron with several daughters and a few sons. Over these past years, Viccy had ridden the city of those who were not with the vampires. Mainly the werewolves had been forced from the city; the only werewolves that had fought the forced exodus was Ai’letha, her pack, and a few others. They knew that the balance of power should not fall all to the vampires. One afternoon, Ai’letha and Ramu visited the group that was now known as the leaders of the Nites Army. They heard that Bobbi was half werewolf and now that she was in puberty, they wanted to see what kind of information they could give to Sao. “Yeah, Bobbi’s half werewolf. What’s it got to do with the pack,” Sao asked as she sat down with a glass of water.
“Any one that was born a werewolf can tell you that going through puberty is no walk in the park. And where Bobbi is living, it could really put a rift between her and the triplets,” Ai’letha said.
“But separating them could cause more damage than good. We have enough damage in the city’s society, we don’t need to add to it by separating the siblings,” Sao countered. “You know that. It’s been over a decade since the clan had laid martial law over the city, and I feel that the time is soon upon us for us to fight back.”
“Can we please focus on one thing here,” Ramu asked. “We’re talking about Bobbi here.”
“I think that she’s doing just fine for her situation,” Sao said. “But if you much insist on checking in on Bobbi, be my guest. But she is my daughter and I will not give her up easily.”
“Agreed. Now, what about Viccy and the clan?”
“I’ll ask Alyesia and the vampires that are agents against Viccy and the clan she is building around her and the witches that claim to be to be rouges of Athena’s order to see what they know and how it can be brought down,” Sao said.
“And if it resulted into returning to the base.”
“Hopefully it won’t come to that. But if it does, Viccy is the one that needs to be killed. She goes down, the clan members will listen.” “Are you sure you can trust the vampires,” Ramu asked.
“The agents, yes. I know vampires and werewolves are all time enemies; but trust me on this. We all need to set aside our racial difference in order to save our city. If we’re to talk more about the battle we all know that will be here, it’s only fair that the others are here to discuss it.”
“Two days. Is that enough time?”
“I’ll do my best.”
“Than we’ll see you in two days,” Ai’letha said. She stood and head for the door, followed by Ramu.
Sao saw them out and kept a watchful eye on them. It was not like she did not trust them; she wanted to make sure they were not attacked by one of Viccy’s vampyres. Sure enough, Sao’s fear came to life when five vampyres she knew were not agents approached the Alpha pair. Sao left the house and while she walked toward the converging species, she changed into her dragon form. When she was fully formed, Sao was only feet away from the group. She gave a loud roar, which took the vampyres’ attention from the two werewolves and brought it to her. They had heard of a Golden dragon was living in the city, but did not really believe it until now. Two broke off from their intended targets to engage in battle with Sao. They threw themselves at her, but Sao managed to dodge them and knocked them aside like they were rage dolls. Once they picked themselves up, the two vampyres charged again; this time they managed to do some damaged, but not enough to cause her to change back into her human form. She roared from the pain and swung her tail around to catch the vampyres. Sao turned and pinned them both under one claw, before she growled at them. They got the message and Sao lifted her clan high enough for them to run off. Sao turned and saw the remaining three vampyres corner Ai’letha and Ramu. She faced them before she shot a jet of flame at them. They ran off toward the base as the two werewolves approached Sao.
“Thanks. I suggest that we move the meeting up to tomorrow night,” Ai’letha said.
“I’ll send the word out.”
The two werewolves went back to their home as Sao changed back into her human form and set out to find Bane. She knew she could trust him to spread the word to the others about the emergency meeting at her place the next night. As she walked through the streets, Sao saw the number of vampyres grew, she drew out her pendent and placed it around her neck, not wanting to take the chance. The further she went into the city, the more brutality she saw. The vampyres were killing off or driving away the werewolves. She now wished that she was a Black dragon, but before she could duck into an alley way, a vampyre grabbed her arm.
“Where do you think you’re going, wolf lover,” he said.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m a rouge witch that has been supporting the vampyre magic for the past five years,” Sao lied.
The vampyre looked at Sao with a look that looked like a spell was casted over him. Sao grew concerned when the vampyre did not reply.
“Hey, either bring the woman or leave her,” a vampyre called to his companion.
That call snapped the vampyre that had caught Sao out of his state. He nodded to Sao, accepted the lie, and joined his companion and left Sao alone. She took no chance and ducked into the alley. She sat down a ways in to breath before she began her search for Bane. Further down the alley, two silver eyes stared at her. The owner recognized Sao and made its way toward her. When Sao felt something was approaching her, she stood and faced into the alley.
“That was risky. You could have been taken to the base or killed,” a female voice said. “Or were you really brave?”
“Perhaps a bit of both,” Sao replied. “Who are you? I don’t recognize your eyes.”
“I am what the vampyres are hunting; along with the rest of my species.”
The werewolf stepped into the light, enough light for Sao to see Hikku. She was in her human form; thin but built. She stood about five feet six and wore a lot of mascara and her normal everyday clothing is skirts and shorts of the like. Her black hair was out of her face, but hung loose. Sao met the werewolf once before when she and her friends returned from the vampyre base with Clare.
“The vampyres have started displacing us since night fall. I heard that no only are they ridding of my kin, but of very species. How you managed to avoid being moved from the city I don’t know,” Hikku said.
“I don’t either. But we’re having a meeting at my house tomorrow night. Make it if you can.”
With that, Hikku changed into her werewolf form and bounded off. Her werewolf form had a feathery man of black, white, and brown hair mixed with longer pieces of brownish white hair. The last thing Sao saw was Hikku’s thick tail as the werewolf made her way through the streets; always cautious of vampyres. Sao left the alley and continued her search for Bane. For the past several years, she thought about the feeling she had all those years ago when they first met. She changed into her dragon form and took to the air and spent the entire night looking for the were tiger. It was not until the first rays of sunlight did Sao find Bane. She was exhausted from the search and flying over the city; but that did not stop her. She landed, though it looked more like a controlled crash from her lack of sleep and changed into her human form as the tiger approached.
“What are you doing out here,” he asked, a bit concerned about her.
“We’re having a meeting tonight at my place. I’ve already talked with Hikku, and she had helped with spreading the word. I need your help by doing the same.”
“Meeting for what?”
“Battle plans against the vampyres.”
Bane was taken back by this. He had never heard this from Sao. He had grown used to Sao having this sweet demeanor, not this battle hungry one.
Then again, that changed when she became a dragon, Bane thought.
“Are you serious?”
"Yes. They had control of this city for far too long. And now that they started killing off werewolves, that calls for war. I won’t be surprised if they started killing the rest of us off any time now”
“I’ll do my best of spreading the word. But a question; what about the vampyres and witch agents in the vampyre base?”
“I’ll go in myself. I can’t risk any one else going in.”
Sao smiled before she started for the mountains with the hope this time she could easily pass as a witch. It happened before, but there was a risk that it would not this time around. Sao reached the hidden door and entered the base just in time to join a small group of witches. She followed them to a room big enough to hold the whole of the witch order that lived in the base. She was the last one to enter and when the door closed, she knew that these were the agents.
“Sao, a surprised to see you,” the leader said. “What brings you here?”
“There’ll be a meeting at my house tonight. Athena will know about this, but this meeting’s for battle plans against the vampyres,” Sao said.
“Are you sure about that?”
“Yeah. This has gone on long enough.”
At that, the group split up; left in groups of two or three. Sao was one of the last ones to leave. She made her way back to the hidden door. Mere feet from it, she was intercepted by two priestesses that Viccy had appointed. “Our matron wishes to see you,” one said.
“And we will be fooled by one of your lies,” the other said. They led Sao to the small audience chamber where Viccy was, speaking with several of her priestesses. Viccy halted all discussion and turned her attention to Sao.
“So, this is the famous Sao that I’ve heard so much about,” the matron said, approaching her.
Viccy circled Sao and studied her very closely. She took careful mental notes of Sao’s physical appearance. The matron wondered why this young human was doing in the base; beside the risk of being bitten.
Though... There is something unusual about her, Viccy thought. But what is it?
“I had expected more,” she finally said.
“I’m sorry to have disappointed you.”
“What’s some one like you mingling with us of high birth,” Viccy asked.
“I wished to learn of the vampyres,” Sao said, hoping this lie would work. “I’m writing about the many species that live within Wyld Nites.
"I would have begun with the werewolves, but they had been either killed or driven off.”
“The werewolves are vermin and do not deserve to live in Wyld Nites,” Viccy said. “As do any who sympathize with them.”
“And you decided to take it upon yourself to rid the city of the werewolves and their friends. What gave you that right?”
“Lena had been gone for several years. Some one needs to make some order of the city.”
“Even if it means killing off half the city’s population?”
“Yes. I would even kill fellow vampyres.”
What has the city come to, Sao thought. “So, what do you plan on doing with me,” Sao asked.
“Keep you as my prisoner; though you will be treated with respect by the clan. We are not as uncivilized as you would think.”
Viccy made a silent gesture, which the two vampyres that escorted Sao to the chamber, picked up. They knew where to take Sao, and knew to keep an eye on her. Thoughts ran through Sao’s mind. First that went through was that of her children; than that of the meeting that was that night. She may have turned into a prisoner, but all of the vampyres that passed by treated her with respect. After several turns, whether it was to throw Sao off or it was the actually way, they arrived at the chamber Sao thought she would stay in.
“Some one will bring you more suitable clothing,” one of her escorts said.
The door closed and the two vampyres left Sao alone in her chamber. Sao’s chamber had very little comfort if none at all. A cot with little comfort and the blanket was near thread bare. The pillow was so flat, it really did not add to the amount of comfort. There was a hold in a corner that was big enough for Sao to squat down and do her business and had a piece of plywood for a cover.
“This is being treated with respect,” Sao shouted. “A hole in the ground for a toilet and a cot that’s no better than the floor!”
All that replied was the silence of the room and the corridor. The only thing Sao could do at this point was sit on the flat mattress. She expected a little more than this; even if she was the vampyres’ prisoner. This was indeed a new development in this war.
Night fell and many arrived at the Victorian house. Those who lived in the house were worried since they had not heard from Sao in a full day. The werewolves and vampyres, as much as the two species hated each other, sat mingled together. This came was a surprised to those that had gathered. The last one that arrived was Bane; and the look on his face told those that were there that something was wrong. Shadow, who was serving drinks, approached the were tiger; who was in his human form.
“Sao’s been taken prisoner by Viccy,” the shape shifter said.
“I don’t know really. She went in to inform the witch and vampyre agents of the meeting and apparently never came out. I watched for nearly most of the day.”
“So, instead of a meeting for battle plans, this is a meeting to rescue Sao.”
Bane studied the Black dragon. He got the feeling that Shadow had feelings for Sao; and it dawned on the were tiger that he had feelings for her as well. More feelings rose with those love feelings. He was jealous that Sao could have feelings for Shadow. Anger since he may have competition with the dragon. But more was at stake thank his feelings, and he knew that.
“It’s for both reasons,” was the only thing Bane said to Shadow.
Now is not the time to let my feelings take priority, Bane thought as he and Shadow went into the living room. Bane was surprised to see both werewolves and vampyres sitting in the same room. Never before had he seen such a thing; but then again ever since Sao arrived nothing was the same.
“Since Sao is not here,” Shadow said. “We shall begin the meeting. The vampyres have begun to “purify” the city. It is only time when they come and get us; so we must bring the fight to them before it’s too late.”
“Where is Sao,” Hikku asked. “Reports say that she went into the vampyre base; probably to inform the agents and never left.”
“So, she’s their prisoner. This will not go well if we storm the base.”
“Even if Sao is their prisoner, she could still provide help from the inside,” Brandon said. “We should go now before anything happens to her.”
“If we go now, before we have any battle plans, we will not put ourselves in danger; but Sao as well. There’s nothing that we can do for her,” Alyesia said. “Even if Viccy has her prisoner, we need to have faith in Sao that she’ll do something.”
There was a silence that filled the room, even the teenagers, who had just walked into the room felt it. The one they all loved was a prisoner of war to a species that would either kill her or make her one of their own.
“So, what’s the plan,” Hosh asked.
In a hundred years, does it matter that there are Nites there to protect you? It sure does.