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Chapter 8

“What’s wrong with Cassi?” Alex asked Gabriella and Mike. They both shrugged.

“Maybe she’s dealing with finally learning the meaning of her life.” Gabriella suggested, digging into wormy fries and a cockroach chip shake. Alex watched Cassidie’s retreating form and decided that she needed to talk to someone.

“I’m going to go talk to the spy.” she told her friends.

“Which one?” Mike asked. “The one that works in both cities as a puffball or the one in Midnight Haven only?”

“Kate, the puffball one.” Alex replied.

The duo nodded and Alex headed out. When she arrived outside, Alex pressed a button on her watch while making her way to her night-black Mercedes. The line rang for barely a second before someone answered.

“Hello?” the voice on the other end asked.

“Hey Kate, it’s Alex.” Alex told her. “Can we talk?”

“Of course, Allie.” Kate replied understandingly. “Just give me a moment. Meet you at the usual place?”

“Yeah.” Alex hung up and put her keys in the ignition. Pulling out of the Maul parking lot, Alex drove quickly to the border between Monstropolis and White Castle. Alex parked her car in a secluded place and slipped into a warehouse that had been built right on the border. Kate was already there and she patted the box next to her, inviting Alex to sit. The darker brunette sat heavily next to her other best friend and sighed.

“So what type of monster are you?” Alex asked dully, using a tone she had learned from Cassidie.

“Shapeshifting metamorpher.”

Alex nodded and stared down at the floor.

“It’s Cassi, isn’t it?” Kate stated.

Alex nodded. “She’s not very happy, but I can’t tell why. Kate, I love her and I know she loves me too, but we’re not mates.”

“Do you know that for sure?” Kate challenged gently.

Kate knew better than anyone else about the history of her friends. Alex actually was a bit of royalty back when monsters still roamed the earth. She just couldn’t tell what branch of royalty Alex was. So, Kate was the only one who really knew Alex and she knew that the sunny brunette and the dark blonde were meant to be together.

“I don’t!” replied an exasperated Alex. “But I don’t want to get my hopes up and then find out I’m wrong. Come on, Kate, Help me.” Alex looked at the other girl pleadingly.

The metamorphic sighed and suggested, “Try dating someone else. Get your mind off of Cassi for a bit and see if you can love someone else.”

Alex stared at Kate for a moment before shutting her eyes and nodding. “Ok, I’ll try it. But if it doesn’t work, I won’t know what to do.”

Kate patted her back calmingly and the two headed to their separate cities.

Cassidie walked home from the Maul with a bag of clothes in one hand. She had texted the other members of the band and told them about performance plans. The only one not to reply was Jake, but Cassidie figured he was too busy to reply immediately.

She was strolling leisurely when she noticed how everyone either ducked his or her head to acknowledge her presence or bowed to her welcomingly and it made her slightly uncomfortable. Ducking her head self-consciously, the blonde dipped into her favorite alley, jogging along it.

Suddenly, something grabbed her from behind and slammed her into the alley wall. Gasping as her head came into contact with the brick wall, Cassidie waited for her vision to clear before looking at her captor.

“You!” she growled, glancing behind the large wolf holding her and noticing a red eye and a blue eye appear and sharp yellow fangs glinted at her from the darkness.

Yes, child, the black wolf smirked. Do you have the book for us?

“Of course not!” Cassidie snarled. “I don’t know which book you want.”

Stop playing games with us! the wolf roared. He snapped his tail like a whip and the wolf holding Cassidie moved his thick meaty paw to her throat, squeezing steadily. Tell us where it is!

Cassidie gasped for air as she remembered that she wasn’t in her monster form and actually needed to breathe. “I don’t know what you’re talking about!” Cassidie yelled. “Let me go, you big overgrown excuse for a dog.” Cassidie was seeing popping lights now and her chest was aching with the effort of trying to draw air.

Not until you give us the book. And I take slight offense to that comment. Horace, squeeze harder just for that.

The angry, multicolored-eyed wolf glared at her as Cassidie found herself going limp. Slipping into darkness, Cassidie made one last feeble call for help. Through her darkened senses, Cassidie thought she heard Gabriella shout something at her two captors.

Where’s Mike? Cassidie wondered. “Hey Pinky!” There he is, but what about the Twins?

“Put down-.”

“-our friend!” Bingo.

Suddenly, Cassidie found that she could breathe; gasping for air, she saw the two wolves running away. Glancing up, she noticed Caitlin Stewart, also known as Cat, offering her a hand.

“Thanks,” the blonde choked. “How did you cats know to find me?”

“Alex came back to the Maul,” Gabriella told her. “She said that she had a bad feeling in her stomach and she was sure it had something to do with you. Then she caught a vision of your favorite alleyway and said that was where we needed to go.”

“Where is she?” Cassidie wondered aloud.

“She had to go meet someone or something.” Mike told her. “I can’t remember, but she left in a hurry and she looked almost frantic.”

Cassidie shook her head and turned to Cat.

“So who were they?” Cat asked. “Ex-boyfriends who wanted something overdue?” The tall, blue-eyed vampire winked at Cassidie flirtatiously, showing off her gleaming fangs as the blonde blushed.

“Uh, no,” she murmured. “They wanted the book and I wouldn’t give it to them.”

“Well, would you give it to me?” Cat asked.

“Why would I give you the book?” Cassidie looked up to see the blue eyes staring at her lustfully.

“I didn’t mean the book,” the spy replied softly, putting a hand on either side of Cassidie with her palms flat against the wall.

“C-Cat, I don’t think that’s the best thing right n-now.”

“Why not?” Cat asked, leaning so close Cassidie could feel her warm breath against her lips.

“Alright, sis,” Stefan intervened, pulling Cat away and allowing Cassidie to release a sigh of relief.

“Thanks Stef,” she murmured, hurrying down the alleyway. “See you cats at the Bat.”

They all nodded and Cassidie continued home.

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