She wasn't quite sure how it had happened - somewhere along the way, Tina Marks had earned her rival's... respect? Affection? Obsession? Whatever it was, she couldn't keep the mysterious Jamie at bay anymore.
The hell. You drew Jamie in, she reminded herself, sighing as the pissy farmer stared coldly at the stars in the evening sky. It was the evening of the Starry Night Festival, and while Jamie had come forward with the invitation to watch the stars with Tina, he - She? Tina thought, confused - was as rude as on any other day. Although, Tina had to admit, conversation with Jamie had at least evolved from outright insults to backhanded compliments.
"The moon's dim tonight. The lack of light does a good job of hiding your crow's feet," Jamie said, as if reading Tina's mind. "You should get botox."
"Yes, yes, of course," Tina responded dismissively. "It's beautiful out here tonight, Jamie."
"In fact," Tina continued, her voice becoming husky, her curiosity starting to rise as it usually did when she and Jamie were alone, "I have an idea."
"We've been going together for four months," Tina pushed, pouting a little. "And I know you're warming to me. You haven't called me a manic, diseased whore in three weeks. You want this as bad as I do."
Jamie rolled his/her eyes. "I'm simply thinking of new and creative ways to verbally abuse you."
"You just want to solve the mystery," Jamie added, his/her voice having suddenly taken on an accusing tone.
"I never said I didn't," Tina pointed out smugly. "I can solve the mystery and get my rocks off at the same time. And yours, I guess. Besides," she added triumphantly, "you were the one who invited me. You knew we were going to be alone and I would get into a mood!"
"You're nuts," Jamie spat coldly. "And those pigtails make you look like a cheap slut. Who would fuck you?"
"You, in a second." Tina reached up and undid her pigtails, shaking her hair loose and rumpling it with her hands.
"Now you just look like a slut," Jamie scoffed. "Ridiculous."
"Let's get nasty," Tina purred, tugging on Jamie's poncho. "I don't care what's down there."
"You couldn't handle it," Jamie shot back acidly. "Drop the subject."
"Drop your pants."
Jamie seemed to have reached a breaking point. Closing his/her eyes and sighing, he/she scowled. "You wanna fuck? You wanna see me naked?"
Tina nodded eagerly, shedding her coat and beginning to unbutton her blouse.
"Fine. Go on, you pathetic whore." From Jamie, that was almost as good as 'I love you'.
Straddling her boyfriend or girlfriend, Tina eagerly grabbed the waist of Jamie's pants and pulled them down roughly, eyes widening as she took in the sight before her.
"Nice knowing you, chump."
Unable to handle the unfathomable horror before her, Tina screamed harder than she'd ever screamed at anything else in her life. The screams erupted uncontrollably from her throat, soon drowned out by an unholy roar as a blinding green flash lit her face.
Tina was never seen again after that night.
Weeks later, as the last of winter's snow turned to slush in the warm air of spring, Eve was heading up to Starry Hill when she noticed a gruesome sight. Five rows of deep scratches in the dirt, ending with the charred, crushed skeleton of someone's hand...