No New Dawn
If, four days ago, someone had told me I was actually a massive gray wolf with black spots bound to protect innocents... which in my friend's mind included the dead vampire boy – one I'd assumed was just dead dead – I'd have called you a liar.
Of course, given that I was currently standing in front of him as he asked me if I was Embrianna Call, I guess I was the liar.
Quilla and I heard the news on the same day that our friend Julie had officially dropped out of school. She'd stopped showing up about three weeks prior, but it was the first confirmation that we'd received on it.
After school we went to her house, but no one was home. Bonnie was likely down in Forks with Charlie, and as Quilla and I broke into the house through Jules' bedroom window, it became abundantly clear that Jules probably hadn't even been home in a several days – if not the entire three weeks since we'd last seen her.
"What do you think happened to her?" Quilla asked.
"I don't know."
I shook my head. No, I didn't know, but I had seen the elders of the town gathering a few weeks ago. And the same time that they had gathered, Samantha's cult had been there... and Julie. But I didn't voice my concern to Quilla. She was already one fuse away from getting into a fight. And while she was always willing to start a fight, she was truly soft around the edges in a way Jules and I never had been.
So I'd go get answers on my own after she went home, which turned out not to be long as she was behind on her homework.
We went separate ways at the fork in the road, with me claiming I was going to the beach.
The instant she was out of sight, I spun and raced up the road heading north. I reached Elliott's house quicker than I thought it should have taken me.
I slammed my fist against the front door and a minute later Samantha answered.
"Embrianna, what are you doing here?"
"Give her back." I was so angry that I was shaking.
"Julie," I spat my friend's name. "You have enough in your cult, and she's been through enough. She doesn't need to be messed up in whatever stuff you're into." I clenched my hands into fists.
I hated Samantha, I truly did. She'd destroyed Lee's life, ruined both Jaelyn's and Paula's futures as they'd both been on their way out of La Push before she got involved. Now she was taking Julie too, and I wasn't going to let her. I started shaking even more.
"Embrianna, you aren't making any sense. Maybe you should sit down and try to relax."
She reached towards me, probably to try and grab my arm to guide me inside or something, but I shook my head and quickly backed up. I suddenly didn't feel very well at all.
If there was such a thing as witches, I think I'd honestly accuse her of being one, she was the reason for this. I just knew it.
"Embrianna, you need to calm down," Samantha shouted.
I shook my head again, backing farther away from her. "Whatever you're doing, stop it!" I shouted.
It felt as if every muscle and bone in me was vibrating, trying to break loose from my skin. It was actually painful. My body reacting to some internal knowledge that something I didn't want was about to happen.
Suddenly Paula was standing beside Samantha. "She's past the point of relaxing."
"I know." Sam sounded anguished. "But this is unfair to her. She's not part of the tribe."
Their words were not making sense to me. I couldn't really focus on what was going on. Everything was shaking.
Suddenly Paula was right in front of and her fist connected with my cheek, spinning me backward and onto all fours. Everything exploded around me as I spun. When I came down, I wasn't human. At the edge of my vision were giant gray paws where my hands should have been. In front of my eyes was a giant snout and muzzle.
I let out a surprised scream. What came out was a howl.
"You really didn't need to do that, Paula. She was minutes from shifting oh her own." It was Samantha's muttered words.
"But it was fun."
I turned to look Samantha's way, just as she was stripping out of her clothes. She started to shake as she jumped off of her porch, landing in front of me on all fours. She was a giant black wolf. I stepped back in shock then spun and raced away from her.
I heard a shocked whine behind me, but didn't turn to check what was going on. I wanted nothing to do with Samantha.
I don't know how far I made it into the forest when I suddenly heard a voice, not physically spoken, but in my head.
I'm on my way.
I recognized the voice in my head well. She sounded the same when she spoke aloud. Jules?
I could see through a set of eyes that weren't mine, deep in the the forest. At the same moment, I was assaulted with hundreds of memories.
In one moment I was hearing a retelling of Quileute legends, in the next I was seeing Jules talking to someone who I was sure was dead, the next I was seeing a memory of Samantha accidentally exploding into a wolf in front of Elliott, the next was a scene of Paula shouting at her mom. Then there were dozens more.
I shook my head, trying to shake the memories and voices out of my head. It didn't work.
Sorry, Embrianna. There's no easy way to learn this info, Jules thought at me. The assault continued
Four days later, and here I was, protecting one vampire from another.