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Chapter 9

Cassidie rushed into her house and locked the door behind her. Everyone knew Cat was gay, that wasn’t anything new. Neither was Cat hitting on her, which had happened multiple times. But she couldn’t deal with Cat flirting with her right after being attacked.

Cassidie made sure every entrance to her house was sealed, manually and magically, before getting the book from the ceiling and fingering it loosely. Turning it over in her hands, the blonde Goth stared at it in wonder. Tingles flew through her as she slowly opened the book.

Flipping the pages, Cassidie stared in awe at all of the different spells for monsters and the vivid illustrations of what they could do. One spell in particular caught the Goth’s eye and she turned back to it. There was a picture of a yellow werewolf that appeared to be running but nothing else. Cassidie shrugged and glanced at the spell; finding it rather interesting, she locked it away in her mind for later use just in case.

Sighing, she put the book back in its safe place and began getting ready for her performance at the Bat. Taking a quick shower, Cassidie put on a dark purple miniskirt with a black waistband and scarlet hemming, a purple tank top with a blue skull and crossbones over a fishnet shirt. Slipping into a pair of platform purple combat boots, a bat choker completed the outfit. Putting on her make-up, Cassidie grabbed her purse and headed out the door.

Walking lazily through the city, Cassidie sniffed the air and caught the faint scent of sweat, bacon, excitement, flowers, hormones and- wait. She could smell how people were feeling? That most definitely was not abnormal. Then she got a whiff of turkey and licked her lips, hurrying to the nearby grill to snatch a small piece before heading to the Bat. Upon arrival, she immediately took in the crowd of monsters and nodded to anyone who called out to her. Cassidie allowed a small smile to filter out as she danced with a crowd of friends from her school.

Then, half past eleven, the DJ called out, “Hey, hey, hey! Now we have everyone’s most screamed for band and long-time performers, Cassidie Powers and the Carnage Angels!”

A massive cheer went up and Cassidie began making her way toward stage. She saw Cat, Stefan and Mike already up there, but there was no sign of Jake. She climbed onstage and knew that everyone was confused to see her in her human form, but she ignored that. Turning to Cat, she sighed and said, “Toss me the spare guitar.” The other three band members looked at her skeptically, but Cassidie sent them a pointed look and so, Cat tossed her the spare guitar that they had just in case another guitarist was needed, such as now. Slowly, Cassidie began to strum and opened her mouth to sing.

“Sometimes I get so weird my friends take me out to party, dancing til my heart stops, I know I’m where I belong…” As she sang, the Goth crowd looked up at her in awe and began singing along.

Strumming quickly, Cassidie launched into the bridge with ease. “Lose all control. Make use of the night. Don’t you see the reason for making the most of the time that we have right now? So let’s run away…

Once the song was finished, Cassidie and her group bowed and accepted the black roses thrown at them. Someone yelled out, “Another song!” and soon the entire crowd was chanting the words. Cassidie turned to her friends and they nodded. Cassidie turned back to the crowd and cued Mike, finger-spelling out the song. Raising her hand, Cassidie started the countdown.

The rage inside my head, I’m freakin’ out. See things I can’t understand, time’s running out. You know, I should be left alone. I can’t take it.” The crowd was yawning and most of their gazes averted to other things of interest. “But I’m not going home.

Cassidie’s eyes twinkled as a small smile appeared on her lips and drew the crowd’s interest because everyone knew something good was coming. There was a short pause in which Mike’s notes lingered in the air before a blast of music sounded as all of the teens attacked their instruments. “Hey! Just let me fight, I will slash you tonight…

The blast of sound startled everyone, but that was soon forgotten as an approving roar went up. “I’mma make this club into a bloodbath! Too good for me? Well now you’ll see. I don’t like seeing you with her! I’ll terrorize her before your eyes.” Cassidie chose this song for two reasons. The first was that it had a killer beat and the second was because Mike got to show off his rapping skills.

“You and me can’t you see we belong together. You must be confused. Who are you to leave me for her? I’ll claw out your eyes and make you cry before I ever let you go. Come on Baby, can’t you see, I’m never letting you go? So make a choice, use your voice but don’t you ever tell me no!”

Cassidie chuckled darkly while no one was looking at her. Even though the rap wasn’t originally his, Mike pulled it off pretty wickedly. Cassidie waited for her cue before jumping back in. “I’mma make this club into a bloodbath! Too good for me? Well now you’ll see. I don’t like seeing you with her! I’ll terrorize her before your eyes.

Cassidie spotted Gabriella at the bar passing out drinks and the mummy werewolf gave her a thumbs-down. Cassidie nodded in acknowledge of her praise before closing the song. “Don’t do it, don’t do it. Don’t ever tell me no. Don’t do it. Don’t do it. I’ll never let you go. It’s a bloodbath.

The teens took another bow and quickly jumped offstage. Laughing and joking, they found a table and flagged down a waitress to fill orders.

“Cassi, that was gruesome!” Stefan hissed, flashing his fangs.

“Totally killer!” Cat added.

Cassidie ducked her head at the praise and thanked them. The waitress brought over a large, cheesy crust, meat lovers’ pizza followed by an equally as large veggie pizza. The four fiends dug into the food and soon it was gone. “So, who taught you to play guitar?” Mike asked.

“No one, I just learned on my own. It’s not like I could really have a guitarist mom or dad to help me.”

There was an awkward silence after that and her fiends shifted uncomfortably. Just then, Gabriella walked over and everyone was relieved to have an excuse to change the subject. As the conversation went off in a different direction, Cassidie’s eyes roved around the club. Almost immediately, the blonde found who she was looking for, sitting in a booth not too far away with three or four guys and at least two girls surrounding her.

Cassidie felt the jealousy building inside her and fought to keep it down. Alex can hang out with whoever she wants. Cassidie thought over and over, taking deep breaths. But what happened next threatened her thought resolve. One of the girls seated around Alex—a skinny swamp monster wearing skimpy, muddy clothes—leaned over and pulled Alex into a short kiss.

Cassidie felt herself begin shaking and her skin stretched painfully tight. She stood and stumbled; everything hurt. Her skin was bubbling, her blood boiling, her muscles were tightening up and her bones felt like they were going to crack. It was like red-hot pokers on each of her cells and it was nothing short of excruciating. Cassidie screamed out in agony and pitched forward, fading into darkness. She saw her friends looking at her worriedly, but she couldn’t muster up enough energy to say anything. With an inaudible sigh, Cassidie succumbed to the darkness.

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