Chapter One// As the sunrises
They came in the night, just before dawn. Our legends had been wrong, everything we'd believed was wrong.
They weren't undead monsters, cursed to walk only at night. They were alive, they sparkled in the sunlight, and they were hungry.
Patrick came upon them first, but I hadn't been far behind. A girl only seven years of age. I was meant to be skinning potatoes with mama, not chasing Patrick through the woods. But that was all I
wanted to do back then, I just wanted to run free, to be happy. And as usual Patrick was getting away. I believe he used to take it easy on me, actually I knew. But I also knew it was only because
winning meant so much me, I've always been slightly obsessed with perfection, and Patrick loved to take care of me. My big brother, ready at any moment to help others.
If only I would've listened and stayed home like mama had commanded. I remember Patrick didn't want to go out that morning, but I wouldn't hear either of them. It was a wonderful spring day, the
flowers had just recently bloomed, and I wanted an adventure. And so we went for a short hike, in the hope of finding Lillie-a doe we'd saved a year prior- when I suggested we race up the stream.
Patrick was feeling lazy and being difficult that day. He only wanted to relax, walk slow . But after a little more coercing, he finally gave into me. Only, this time instead of holding back so we
could stay neck-and-neck and I'd have a chance at beating him, he breaks in a vigorous spirit and leaves me choking on dust. Still I used every ounce of my strength to catch him, ever unwilling to
accept defeat. But I was younger then and much slower, so he soon disappeared within the trees.
I was sure I'd lost to him after running alone for so long, not once catching a glimpse of his dark curly hair ahead of me. And then Lillie came bursting from the tree line, her eyes wild as she
sprints right past me, followed by a gut wrenching scream.
At first I did not know it was Patrick, but as I tiptoed through the forest I came across the clearing where a man, pale as the moon, held Partrick down against the grass with his back turned to
me. Patrick saw me first, his black eyes locking onto mine, I could see all the pain and terror I knew he was feeling. So without hesitation I stepped from behind the thick oat I hide behind, ready
to risk all for my brother.
"No!" He croaked, "Run! Go!"
But I ignored him and continued closer. Fearless, until the man turned around slowly and gazed at me. His eyes were the color of crimson rubies, and blood poured heavily from between his lips. So
much blood. Quickly I realized it all was coming from my Patrick. A fear I'd never felt in my deepest nightmares took over me, as I looked in the scene before me. The hole was bigger than my fist,
it bled rapidly and without mercy. His entire collarbone missing, small pieces of him were scattered across the forest floor. My brother was dying right in front of me, and my small frame and weak
arms were no match for the demon that held him.
Standing frozen, my stomach churns, and I close my eyes. Momentarily unwilling to accept all that I've just seen. But when open them again, nothing has changed. My heart drops, hope draining away.
And then the beast smiles at me, my dying brother clutched in his hands, he smiles! My mind immediately rushed back into reality and I ran. Ran harder and faster than I ever have. Back down the
stream, me feet bare but my will stronge. I would dare to look behind me as the sound of his laughter caught up to me.
I had to get back to the others, back to mama. They knew magic, most still practiced the old ways. They would defeat the beast and save my brother. My muscles burned, along with my chest, but I
would not stop. I had to hold onto the hope that he'd be alive long enough for me to find help. And as I reached the waterfall, I didn't hesitate, I jumped.
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