This is the song I was given.
Dead I am the one, exterminating son
Slipping through the trees, strangling the breeze
Dead I am the sky, watching angels cry
While they slowly turn, conquering the worm
Dig through the ditches,
Burn through the witches
I slam in the back of my
The smell of it clung to the air. The scent came from everywhere, all around me, confusing my senses.
Somewhere out here, there was a juicy bit of meat running around.
I picked my way slowly through the trees, careful to make no sound. It was okay, all I had was time. There was no rush.
The bitter scent of witch also hung in the air, ruining the sweet smell of human blood.
Lovely, just lovely. Brianne was here.
I sighed, knowing I had to find my prey- that sweet, innocent, young librarian that I hand lured out here- before Brianne could find me. This made things... a little more interesting.
A light breeze drifted by, carrying with it the scents of both women. But with a flick of my hand, the breeze died, settling around me like hot breath on my neck, moist and sticky. It was slightly uncomfortable, but I didn't need the witch to know about me before I was ready.
I hurried to close the distance I had surreptitiously let grow between me and the girl. I had pushed her until she had almost snapped last time, but she should be cooled down by now.
"Twenty-six years," I could hear her whisper to herself, "You lived here for twenty-six years, Charyl, and not once have you gotten lost in this forest before. But no, you decided tonight, of all nights, the day before Halloween, to get lost. Why. Charyl, why?"
Because I made it so, I answered silently.
The woman, a rather plump girl with a strange liking for flower-patterned muumuus, stumbled as she heard a snap in the direction she was heading. She froze and changed directions, dashing off to her left.
No, no, no, I chided, you need to go the other way.
I ran a head of her and shook some branches. Like I had predicted, she jumped and changed directions. Easy as pie.
Don't do that again too soon, I made a mental note as I watched how on-edge these small sounds were making her. She would snap if I did. And chasing after a lunatic was more work than it wasworth. At this rate, the hunt would be over much sooner than I had expected.
I followed the panicky woman ata leisurely pace, occassionally stepping in to keep her on the right path.
We were getting close. Fifty feet now... forty... thirty... clunk.
The metallic ringing froze me in my tracks and I paused to take in just what exactly had happened.
The librarian had been smacked in the head hard enough that she lay unconscious on a bed of dried leaves. Above her stood a wiry redhead holding a shovel. My shovel.
She was wearing pale grey sweats slung low on her hips, a skin-tight bright pink tank top stained dark from sweat, the only indication of the effort she made tracking me. Her unruly, stringly red hair was pulled back into a messy ponytail, her dark brown eyes twinkling with amusement. She drove the sharp end of the shovel into the moist earth and left it there, crossing her arms and cocking a hip.
"Bry-den," shecooed with a darkly excited grin pasted on to her freckly face.
"Brianne," I muttered, not nearly excited to see her as she was to see me. "You're here to steal my food again, aren't you?"
She nodded spastically, delighting in my pain. "So, what was it that you were planning to do? Drain her and dump her in a ditch?"
"Can I have my shovel?" Iasked politely, or as politely as I could manage when it came to Brianne.
She rolled her eyes and shrugged, "Yeah, sure, take it."
But I would wait until she had left before I took another step closer.
Though Brianne had the maturity of a hormonally unstable fourteen year old, she was far older than that, with enough knowledge of her craft to leave me with some very unpleasant magic presents.
Brianne, the little witch, followed me wherever I went, intent on being an eternal thorn in my side. Occassionally, she would ruin hunts, much like tonight, other times she would make it impossible for me to live in a town for more than a couple of weeks. And sometimes still, she'd get a little more creative, usually ending up with me going hungry.
"Are you going to take her or just grace me with your lovely face all night?" I asked, trying to sound pleasant.
She laughed at me and picked up the unconscious woman, whispering some soft incantation as she left.
It wasn't untilI heard the roar of her black sports car that I moved.
A slow grin spread over my face as Ilaid a hand on my shovel. Now that Brianne was out of the way, it was time for the real chase.