Hunter

The light flashed against her carnivorous teeth and glinted in her blood-colored eyes as she watched her prey from the shadows. She pursued the human girl silently. Part of the reason she stalked this particular child, rather than the large, bloodier adults who, drunk as they were, would not need any supernatural help to wipe their minds, was the hideously stereotypical costume that the girl wore. She was bent over double, with warts the size of marbles and skin painted the sickening color of vomit. Her long, hooked nose had a huge lump at the end of it. It was an insult to all witches and, therefore, it was an insult to the witch who had been turned into a vampire during the Salem Witch Trials—the witch who now hunted her.
She smiled. Though she was a Day walker, a creature from the world of Shadows who was impervious to the rays of the sun, she could walk through the territory of the Night Vampires, the vampires that had become the stars in many myths and legends. Halloween was a night when all such hunting laws became void. Around her, true witches and vampires, both Day and Night, mingled with the humans who wore costumes. Even werewolves were present. Their repugnant odor assured her of their presence though she could not see them. She scowled. Werewolves considered themselves the protectors of humans despite the fact that werewolves were less human than almost any other member of the secret world. There was a special hostility between vampires and werewolves.
The girl was not consciously aware of the hostile vampire’s presence but she sensed something lurking in the shadows. It made the human girl uneasy. She turned to walk in the opposite direction as the flesh on her neck crawled. She cut around many corners, trying to lose the shadow. After a while, the girl glanced nervously behind her and saw a shadow creeping silently after her. When the creature knocked over a metal trash can, the girl shrieked before she saw that it was not a monster but rather a black cat with a white tail. Laughing at her own paranoia, she shook her head and turned into an alley she knew was a short cut to the party she was going to.
The carnivore had followed the girl through the well-lit residential streets filled with children demanding candy. She ghosted after the girl as they walked along the main road which was nearly as brightly lit at night as it was during the day. Finally, the girl left the bright public roads to cut through a dark alley. She quickly and soundlessly closed the distance between herself and the human, who didn’t know she was there until she tapped the girl’s shoulder. Her hot breath crept down the human’s neck as she asked, “Do you truly believe that all witches look like that?”
It was a simple enough question but the sound of the woman’s voice sent adrenaline coursing through the girl’s veins and made her want to flee. Before the girl could even formulate an answer, the woman grabbed her. Pale hands clenched the girl’s arms with the strength of iron, holding her in place. The human couldn’t see the attacker’s face, just a dark figure wearing a hood. She began to scream and cry, hoping she could wake up from what had to be a terrible dream, but the vampire held her tight. Shrieking, the girl struggled to get free but the cloaked figure tightened her grip around the girl’s arms.
A black object slammed into the vampire. Her hold weakened and the girl ripped herself free, ignoring the searing pain as the vampire’s claws raked bloody gashes on her arms. She tried to escape, but tripped over a cat—a cat with black fur and a white tail. She fell, twisting her ankle. A sharp object on the ground slashed her other leg as she landed. She couldn’t get up. She tried not to whimper, not to draw attention to herself. Instead, she watched as the woman snarled at the wolf to which the girl owed her life.
The woman’s hood was down, revealing hair the color of gold, streaked with blood from both the woman and the giant wolf she faced. The wolf jaws ripped the woman’s arm open; he clearly possessed the upper hand. So the tables had turned, the girl thought. Predator had become prey! The monster would not be able to suck the blood of those around her—she was finally getting what she deserved. What business did the vampire have coming out of the myths and story books?
Suddenly, and with a vicious snarl, the vampire twisted and threw the werewolf from her back. She proceeded to swiftly snap his spine and his wrench his heard from his half-transformed body. The vampire spun to face the girl. She slammed the girl against the wall and sunk her teeth into the girl’s neck. She drained the girl in less than a second.
The strange thing was, if the girl had simply continued on her journey to the party, if the human had not tried to evade the vampire, or if the stupid werewolf had simply left well enough alone and not gone butting into her life the way werewolves always seemed to do, the girl would have lived. The vampire didn’t like to kill very often. It brought too much attention from the law enforcement, the media, and the vampire society. She would simply have fed a little, erased the girl’s memory, and deposited her at the party she had been going to. It was strange how fate would turn on a human, for no apparent reason. She wiped the blood from her mouth and continued on her hunt.





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