Moonlight Hills-Book One: Lycanthrope

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The Pattern

“What did I do to you? Tell me! Why are you like a stranger to me now, Fender?” Susan Brawley yelled at me with her angry face. She never did that to me before, but I knew she was reaching her limit. I didn’t blame her. It was me who deserved to be blamed. “Things are never going worst just like now. You keep a distance to me. We even barely have a date. Even last night, you didn’t want to be with me and asked me to move away. What happen, Fender? Answer me now!” she continued.

I didn’t know what to say. I just felt that our relationship wasn’t lively anymore. I felt bored. I tried to speak out, even it was very hard to do. I couldn’t stand with this, and I didn’t want to ruin her life also.

“Maybe it’s ov…”

“Stop!” she cut my word with her finger pointed at my face, “Don’t say a word, Fender! You never break up with me. Never!” she persisted. “We will talk again about this later,” she then turned his body and walked away fast. I didn’t know whether she would cry or not.

I sighed. Sometimes I’d been wondering what happened with me. Susan was the perfect girl. She was beauty, friendly, smart enough even if she was blond, there was nothing wrong with her. But I couldn’t fool myself either. I began to feel uncomfortable about this relationship.

Slowly, I walked through the corridor, passing through all the people who stare at me since they clearly watched Susan yelled at me. Maybe they were thinking about how mean I was. But I tried to never care about that. Oh, God, please give me a break, I hoped.

A minute later, I was already at the canteen. First, I scanned the area and tried to find the friends who I could talk to. Just like I thought, they were there. The vampire spot, I usually called for the east area of the canteen. The area was a bit darker, since it was far from the window. Even though those vampires were immune to sun light, it seemed that they weren’t comfortable with it.

Let me tell you again about one of vampire hints, only tainted-blood that is vulnerable with sun light. It even kills them. But that theory can’t be applied to half-blood and pureblood. Most common half-blood has only an allergic to sun light, but it didn’t have any worse effect to the nobler one. But still, they didn’t like it.

Frank, Walter, and Sam were sitting in their seat and drinking their favorite juice called ‘Plasma Juice’. Plasma Juice is the synthetic blood made from Dracaena Cinnabari tree mixed with some rare species of lizard’s blood and other ingredients, creating a liquid that is believed to enhance vampire’s stamina just like humans blood. It is packed with a familiar tetra pack and looks like an ordinary juice. But it wasn’t sold freely. Luckily, it doesn’t taste good for a human.

I sat right next to Frank, smiling to their gloomy face. “How’s life, Pals?” I tried to be all cheerful as I could.

“Not so great after what that damn witch did to me last night,” Sam complained.

Walter nodded, “Yeah. I’m still a bit dizzy. He put us in the unknown zone where everything seemed spinning around. Actually, I just want to sleep in my coffin right now,” he added, “Bastard! He was so strong! I hate witches. They always have a spell which can put my life into misery.”

“What happened with you and Susan? I heard she was angry with you,” Frank said. It seemed that they overheard my fight with Susan just a moment ago.

I didn’t want to talk about that at that time, so I changed the topic, “Forget about that! Just tell me what happened with you guys last night. I heard rumors about Ino Rays from another vampire,” I said.

“He’s a hunter,” Frank answered, “No, he’s just not an ordinary hunter. He’s a slayer,” he continued.

Sam sighed, “He even one of the strongest hunter called the four-slayer,” he added.

I winced, caught in the confusion of my mind, “I barely know about hunters. But what’s the different between hunter and slayer? It looks the same to me,” I asked.

“A hunter is a skillful trained human with the specialty of one weapon or one skill. There are sniper, archer, sword master, and many more. But for those who have mastery most kind of skills and weapons are called slayer,” Frank explained. He drank his juice and began to continue his explanation again, “There were a group of mankind who were given a magic spell to their genes by the most powerful witches of the era. They gave them super strength, super speed, super sense, and many things beyond normal human capabilities. They were designed to hunt all supernatural being who upset the balance of the world. The first child of a male or female hunter will inherited the hunter’s gene. It doesn’t matter if they marry another hunter or just normal human, their first child will be the hunter. They also have an association just like we vampires do.”

“And what is the four-slayer?” I asked again.

“They are the strongest slayers. Slayer is always stronger than hunter, so that basically they are the strongest of their kind. Ino is one of them and he is infamous as the most merciless hunter. He killed everyone he thought who deserved to be killed. That’s why I sensed him as a danger. He almost killed me last night because he thought I was going to harm him. And I was a fool not following my sense to stay away with him and spied on him instead. Hunters would probably only attack the evil ones. But for us supernatural being, getting near him is not a wise decision,” he explained.

For all the time I knew Frank Damon, only that time I saw fear in his face. If Ino is a famous hunter just like Frank said, what is he doing in a peaceful place like Moonlight Hills? Is it because of the murder several days ago? But Ino was already here before the murder occurred, I began to wonder.

In a sudden, Sam and Walter’s face looked paler than before. I realized that they clearly swallow their own spittle. Sam murmured it was him. I turned my head to what they were looking at. Yes, it was him, carrying his tray filled with his food and drink. Their eyes, including Frank’s, grew larger when we realize that Ino Rays, the one they fear the most at that time, walked straight toward us.

He didn’t just approach us. He even put his tray on our table then sat on the empty chair right next to us as if he was the very close friend of ours. He smiled, for the time being I thought that he was not the same with Frank who never smiled like that.

“You don’t mind if I sit here, do you?” he asked.

Tremble in fear, Sam shook his head, “Of course not,” he said.

“You can sit wherever you want, Ino,” Walter added.

Even though I was also scared with him since my vampire friends felt like he was a monster, I dared myself to stand to him, “What are you doing here?” I offended him.

Suddenly Frank called my name. I saw him and he began to give me a sign. He shook his head very slowly, signing that I’d better not to mess up with him.

Ino saw me with his sharp eyes although he was smiling. But to me, he was grinning. Then his smile faded slowly, and my hearts pounded faster than before. Those vampires must know that I was tremble in fear just like they were.

“Human befriends with vampires this close? What a rare sight! What’s you name again…” Ino began to keep in his mind, “Yes, Fender Luts, a football star. I believe they already told you about who I am, yet you still speak to me like that.”

How arrogant! I really hate this one, I said in my mind.

“Please don’t mind him, Ino. He’s just an ordinary human. He knows nothing about you,” Frank tried to defend me.

Ino grabbed his fork, and then he took his sausage with the fork and bit a small piece of it. We wait several seconds while he swallowed his food to his throat. “Basically, I don’t hurt humans. But sometimes I don’t hesitate to give one a lesson if they’re getting on my nerve,” he said. Then I was the one who swallow my own spittle after that.

“Ino, please, don’t make any occasion!” Frank begged. We saw Ino chuckled and said that he was just kidding. There was some feeling in my mind that I was glad with it. “If I may know, do you have any business with us or…one of us?” Frank asked, “I believe you don’t just want to have a little chit-chat with us.”

Ino nodded slowly. He looked straight at Frank’s eyes, “Yes, I think I have a business with you, Damon,” he explained, “Do you all realize what happened somewhere around this town while we had a great party last night?”

“A murder?” Frank guessed while his eyes winced.

“Bingo!” Ino said, and then he ate his sausage again. “I have information that you are investigating the previous one, Damon. What have you found?” he asked Frank.

“I’m just starting. I don’t have any clue about that,” Frank answered honestly.

Ino began to drink his beverage, and then he spoke again, “I want to give you it right now. A clue! I believe I have a pattern of the murders,” Ino then paused for a moment, creating a tense air among us. Frank and the other vampires seemed to scrutinize him. Ino talked again, “First victims, a group of teenagers from this school, were murdered at the forest. The condition was almost the same, scratch and bite all over their body, even one of them was losing his head. But I concern about the guy named Brody Adams. His condition was a bit different. He was hung on his foot.”

I raised my hand suddenly and cut his words, “Wait a moment! The news didn’t tell that one of the victims was getting hung. They said it was only an animal attack. No animal can do such things.”

“You’re a fool or not, Fender?” again his words made me want to strangle him at the time. But of course I wouldn’t do that. “Do you truly believe in that fairy tale made by the police? They do that to avoid panic attack among the residences.”

“Yes,” Sam agreed, “The sheriff of this town is one of the founder families. He knows that it was a supernatural being. My father told me that a bunch of vampires Intel are also investigating it,” he added.

Ino cleared his throat, giving a sign to all of us to listen to him again, “Then I begin to wonder that the other victims were just unlucky. The actual target was Brody Adams,” he explained.

Maybe I didn’t know everything about supernatural world, but I began to wonder what the connection between Brody Adams with all of this. I knew that person. He was just a silly boy who always telling a horror story to his mates. But everybody knew it was a joke. He always told us that his dead grandfather told him the story when he was kid.

“So…what about the second murder that we missed today?” Walter asked.

“The victim’s name was Eliza Woolen. She was found died in her car near the forest. Her throat was torn. It seems that the police didn’t want to public this matter,” he explained. “So…Adams and Woolen! Do you find the pattern, Damon?” he asked Frank.

Spontaneously, we all looked at Frank who was still thinking about what Ino asked to him. I knew he had already found the answer. But typically of Frank, he always liked to be quiet for a moment.

Frank finally nodded, “Adams and Woolen are the member of the founder families. So, are you implying that that supernatural being is targeting the founder family members?”

“It was a lycan,” Ino said.

Lycan? Did he mean it was a werewolf? I had never seen one. I just heard from a tale that they were a shape-shifter and stronger than vampires. I couldn’t believe that such beast was at large, wandering around and killing people. I hoped that what Ino and Frank thought was true, it only targeted the founder family since I was a foreigner who moved in to this town. But still, knowing that an evil being roaming around was thrilled me so much.

“Don’t you have any story or something like that, since your family is also the founder of this town?” Ino asked, “And I believe that actually you are not teenagers anymore, Damon. How long have you been living?”

Ino was asking a difficult question to Frank. Frank never mentioned how old he was. Even he never told me before. I didn’t know if Sam and Walter knew about that or not. Firstly, I believed that Frank wouldn’t answer Ino’s question. But I was astonished when he actually mentioned about how old he was.

With doubt, he began to speak, “I’m….I’m 526 years old.”

I was more astonished when I heard that. As a normal human, I couldn’t believe that Frank was already that old, even though I knew that he was a vampire. I couldn’t imagine how old his father was.

Frank continued his speaking, “I am the third of the siblings. My first brother was killed when the war between purebloods occurred and my second sister was missing. I don’t know if she’s alive or not. They were purebloods since my father married a pureblood woman who died before the war time. After that, he married my mother. There’s just only me and my younger sister. I stopped aging when I was 17,” he explained everything to him as if Ino was his best friend. I somehow hated that he never mentioned about that to me.

A little knowledge again about vampires! Walter had told me about how vary vampires stopped aging. After vampire is born, they grow up just like a normal human. 17 years old is the least age they stopped aging and most vampires hate that. Frank told me that he was upset about why he stopped aging on 17. He said that he wanted to be mature, not a teenager for the rest of his life. The other vampires have their aging stopped on 18, 19, 20, until 35. They said that no history of vampire who stopped aging more than 35.

Actually there was a potion created by the witch that can adjust vampire looks to a specific age. But the ingredients of that potion were missing and no witch left in this world who still knows about the ingredients. It is believed that Frank’s father and mother had used that potion which made them looked like a thirty something years old human.

“For the first time my family moved here, my father adopted a human boy to protect my family secret as vampire. They bear the name Damon as their surname. When it wasn’t possible to keep staying here since we won’t grow old, we moved to another town or another country and my human family still remained here. We went back to this town again when the time is right. We did it over and over again. The last time we moved again here was 2 years ago. Actually, my grandparents who live with us now are not my grandparents. They are descendants of the boy who adopted by my father. Perhaps something happened when I wasn’t around. But I don’t know what it is,” Frank finally stopped his story. Some of them even hadn’t been told by him to me.

Ino laughed a little after hearing that. To me, he was so annoying. There was nothing funny about Frank’s story and I didn’t know why he laughed at him.

Ino ate the last piece of his sausage. “What an interesting story, Frank Damon. But actually, I didn’t ask you to tell me about your family history. I ask you to tell me about this town founder history which related to these murders,” he said.

Frank sighed, “I’m sorry. I got carried away,” he told him. “About the founder history, I will search how the founder family related to the murders. You said that it was a werewolf doing. It happened to me when I also thought that it was a werewolf, but I was a bit doubt,” he explained.

Ino shook his head, “There’s no doubt about it. I have dealt with lycans several times and I know how they kill.”

“Actually, there were lycan families in Moonlight Hills. But they were disappeared about 10 years ago when I wasn’t in this town. Perhaps my father knows about it,” Frank said.

Ino suddenly stood up after finishing his lunch, “Great. It’s not a waste to talk to you, Damon. I’m counting on you. Let’s hunt a wolf!” but when Ino began to walk away, Frank suddenly called him. He turned his body again toward us and winced. I wondered why his expression changed so fast. In a minute he looked nice, but the other minute he looked scary again. “What is it?” he asked.

“Could you please just call me Frank?” Frank asked.

Without any expression, he said okay and see you later. Then he finally got rid of himself from us. Now I can breathe easily again without my heart beating so fast, I talked to myself.

“You told him your everything, Frank,” Sam said. It looked like he could breathe again with ease after Ino went off.

“I don’t know. I just feel a bit uneasy around him. I even misunderstood what he wanted to ask me,” Frank explained, “But it doesn’t matter.”

I nodded, “Yeah, after all he did to us, it’s not weird to feel uneasy around him,” I said.

“But, Frank, do you think it’s good to work with him? You are the one who sense him as a danger,” Walter expressed his worry.

Frank raised his shoulders a bit, “Do I have a choice? After all, he will use his force if I don’t want to help him and it can’t be helped,” he explained.

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