The Last Huntress

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Dane the Idiot

My stride helped keep my pace as I made my way through the halls of the underground lab and to the elevator. Comfrey’s words repeated in my head over and over. One of us. I would never give up everything I’ve fought for just to lay down for the enemy.

The rage coursing through my body fueled my speed through the trees as I landed on the ground floor of our domicile. My boots crushed the grass that was a mix of real and manufactured solar cells to help power our homes. But that was the last thing on my mind right now.

My feet led me towards the far east side gate where I knew Dane was keeping guard right now. If he was sticking to his schedule, that is. I didn’t want to involve anyone else if I could help it. Things like this were my domain, I would leave everything else to Corent who deals with the everyday things and the little problems that arise all the time. I’m not in charge, I just take charge when needed.

Like right freaking now.

I turned towards the path to the tall watchtower in the east wing but I was stopped.

“Red, what are you up to?” Donovan’s annoying voice came from behind me as I marched towards Dane’s post.

“It’s none of your business, Don, now get lost,” I shouted back at him but he kept pace with me.

“What did Comfrey say to you to get you this worked up?” That made me stop in my tracks. My boots slipped slightly from the water that was sprayed on this side of the dome. We used it sparingly but it helped up to keep the real grass alive and well.

“What’s it to you? I got the information I needed and later I’ll put Comfrey out of his misery.” I shoved him slightly when he wouldn’t get out of my way but he knew me too well and shoved me just as hard making me stumble just slightly.

“You shouldn’t be the one that has to kill him. Leave that to one of the soldiers. Now, what did Comfrey give up that would put you in such a mood?” He asked me again and for a second I remembered the fetus growing in the artificial womb in the basement when I looked him in the eye. I shook the thoughts out of my head and stared back at him.

“Dane is the one that let him past the gates without checking for any signs of a change. Comfrey even gave him a shot at it and he still didn’t care all because he ‘knew’ Comfrey. He must be punished for letting one of them into our home.” I was stern and when the news came over his face I could see the shock and disgust coming forward.

“He did a bad thing, and if it were me I would punish him as well but I beg you to do it privately. Don’t make an example of him. If this were to spread past the three of us, not including the one that did it, none of us would look good.” I thought about his request and I really wanted to make an example of him but maybe a private chewing out would be more appropriate.

“You have a point. We can’t let the others know what happened with him. Grab Dane and bring him to my home. I’ll speak to him there.” Donovan sighed as I walked away knowing he got himself into something he didn’t want. I knew he would find someone to take Dane’s place while he brought him to my quarters. Until then, I could gather my rage within the confines of my house.

“Howl!” I shouted for her and soon the sound of her thumping paws got louder and louder the closer she came to me. I saw her walk away once we came out of the basement. I didn’t mind, she had her own thing to do we weren’t together twenty-four seven.

Soon I came to the tree that held my house and with Howl next to me we ascended the staircase leading to the front door.

I paused before turning the knob knowing there would be blood on the floor. I hated getting blood out of the wood grain and even worse I hated that it was his blood. Opening the door against my better judgment I was shocked to see the blood cleaned up and her chair turned back on its right side.

“Damn it Cherry, now I’ll have to owe her one,” I mumbled under my breath knowing Cherry was the one that came back and cleaned for me. I grabbed a glass jug and filled it with water from the bathroom pump. I chugged it before a knock came from the front room. Slamming down the jug I walked to the front door while Howl watched in anticipation of what was about to happen.

I swung the door open and was met with Donovan’s stern face with Dane standing next to him looking almost sick. I don’t blame him. I never ask anyone to my home and if I do, it’s never a good thing.

I opened the door a little wider and allowed them to enter the front room. I could almost smell the fear coming off of Dane and I would be lying if I said it didn’t excite me just a little bit.

Donovan took a seat as if he’s been here more than once while Dane stood like a scared little puppy in the middle of the room.

“Dane, do you know why you’re here today?” I asked, giving him some room to see what he did wrong. He shuffled his feet and stared down at the floor not giving me an answer.

“No, Miss Slayer, I don’t know why I’m here.”

“Call me Miss Riker. I believe you do know why you’re here. It was only a day ago when you let one of them past our secure gates and into our home after all. Your memory shouldn’t be that bad.” I walked to the small bar that was opposite of my hammock where I kept a few glass jugs for water. Picking up the half-full one and took a big drink from it. I’ve been more thirsty than usual. I need to remember to hydrate better on runs.

“I would never let one of them past the gates!” He shouted suddenly trying to defend himself like an idiot trapped in a cage.

“But you did, Dane, and I had to clean up your mess. In this very room, I created a junkie because you let a partially turned vampire into this domain. You remember Comfrey, don’t you?” I asked him and watched the fear turn into panic once he realized his real mistake.

“But...But he would never get turned!” He countered.

“That’s not the point. You check everyone. EVERYONE. I still get checked each and every time I come to the gates. It’s protocol. Had I not captured and secured him he could have wiped us all out. That’s why we check. Every time. Everyone. Period.” I was very close to his face now and I could see his sweat bead and then fall down his face to meet the crack of his lips.

“What’s my punishment?” He asked, while his limbs shook and his sweat fell down his face faster. I wasn’t sure what his punishment should be I just know that he won’t be on the gates any longer.

“For starters, you are banned from gate duty unless you can prove without a doubt that you can keep the gates safe. As for the rest of the punishment. Donovan?” His head snapped up to meet mine. He was deep in thought previously. I could tell because his forehead was crinkled and his mouth was covered by his hand that rested on the arm of the chair. I knew too much about him.

“Yes?” He came out of his thoughts.

“How are you doing on clean up crew? Need any fresh meat?” I kept staring at Dane watching the floor intently.

“With the amount of blood you shed we could always use another body.” He smiled at me knowing I would roll my eyes at his comment. I still did, of course.

“But I’ve never been outside the walls. What if I get killed?” He asked nervously.

“It’s fine, you’ll be trained and if you don’t take your training seriously then you die. Plain and simple.” I shrugged my shoulders and gave it to him as simply as I could. I threw a nod to Donovan to get the boy out of my house so I could actually get some sleep. He took the hint and escorted the boy from the room and the second the door closed I flopped to the chair and threw my head back falling asleep quickly after.

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