Ch 1: The Last Place She Saw

"So Bree, are you going on patrol tonight? I don't have class until ten tomorrow, so I'll go if you can't."

"If you could that would be great. Principal Snyder will freak if I'm late again. I'll take over your next shift."

Rachel Whittaker and Bree Thompson were sitting in Jinx, the only club in Shale Ridge that allowed underage high school and college students go in and dance and hang out. It was a Thursday night in early September, so the place was packed full of students from the local high school and college students unwilling to let go of their summer break, including Rachel and Bree and Bree's high school friends Melissa Ericson and Alex Richards. Unfortunately for the two girls, restless teens also meant restless vampires who would do anything to snag a snack on their way to the club. Rachel and Bree were vampire slayers, and the more vampires around, the less sleep the two of them got.

"You know, maybe I should let you go patrolling then, just to see how you deal with detention. Or see how Mr. Snyder deals with teens that can't get up on time for once in their lives. I still can't believe that that man hasn't had an aneurism yet. He's way too uptight."

Melissa laughed. "Do you remember how he 'volunteered' us for the school play! Rachel only got out of it because she was on the 'backstage tech crew' somehow."

"Okay, I cannot help it if I had friends in high places," Rachel countered.

"Meaning William Monroe?" asked Alex.

Rachel blushed at the name of her short-time high school boyfriend. "Now that I know you guys have decided to turn against me, I'm leaving on patrol. Bree, keep these two freaks out of trouble for one night, if at all possible. And if I don't call you by the morning, leave a message on my cell to make sure I'm okay."

Bree nodded as Rachel stood up and said good-bye to her friends.

"Hey Rachel!" Alex called. "We'll miss you at school tomorrow!"

"Don't worry. Next year, you'll be on campus taking classes right next door."

Rachel headed out the door into the cool night that she was so accustomed to from the past three years as a vampire slayer. She paused outside the door to breathe in the night air, and then started off on her way to her single-person home just six blocks away. She never even made it a block.

"Hey Rachel. Kill any of my friends lately?"

The voice behind her made her stop cold. Andrew.

"Kill any of mine?" she asked, her voice surprisingly calm despite the suddenness of his arrival. He was the only vampire she was afraid of, but not because of his strength. It was his mind and body that captured her. The same mind and body she knew since he was still human in the eighth grade.

"Not recently, but there's still time tonight if you have any time to spare." He was toying with her, not unlike he had for months beforehand, trying to get her to slip up like he knew she could–and would.

Rachel turned to size up her opponent. Even after the six years since she'd seen him last, he still amazed her. Dark brown hair done up in short spikes, the lean strength of his arms and body, a smooth, pale face that one could hardly resist to smile at, and the same hazel eyes with just a sliver of dark brown around the iris that showed so much feeling. Well, almost the same eyes. When he was still alive, there seemed a sort of warmth, a sort of life there–all that is left is cold, hard, and unfeeling. That was Rachel's last thought before her terror struck her suddenly.

"Andrew, what do you want? Are we going to fight again just to have one of us turn and walk away, promising to be the one left standing next time? Are you going to threaten me by threatening my friends? Huh? What now?" Rachel was talking quickly, trying to buy some time to think beyond the here and now. She had to find some way to keep Andrew from killing her. She hated the fact that he was growing so much stronger every time they fought. It scared her just how much this one vampire–this one immortal creature–made her feel such fear like none of the hundreds of others before him had. And when Andrew pulled his hand from his pocket, she realized why and unconsciously slipped into a defense position she knew all too well.

Andrew's hand pulled from his pocket a needle and syringe, filled with some see-through yellow fluid.

Andrew learned from his mistakes whereas Rachel had not allowed any other vampire enough time to learn.

"Now, Rachel? Now we finish this." And with that, Andrew lunged at Rachel with the syringe in one hand and a fist replacing the other. Rachel dodged to his left, punching at his side while avoiding the fist that was coming towards her. Andrew's fist missed her stomach, but still glanced by Rachel's side, earning a grunt of pain from its victim. His arm also tangled up in Rachel's arm that was heading toward his stomach, so Andrew held on tight to his new grip on his prize. Rachel struggled futilely, but realized too late that Andrew had had enough time to train–she struggled harder only to feel Andrew's ever-tightening grip in reaction to her pulling away. Somehow Rachel ended up between Andrew's arms and his chest, the needle hovering over her arm that Andrew was holding in a death grip. She gave up when it hurt her arm too hard to move, and was about to scream for help when she felt a sharp pinch where the needle had been hovering.

'I lost' Rachel though before her mind went blank from fatigue.

'Now isn't that better? When you wake up, you won't want to fight me anymore. It will be like we were never enemies, and we never will be again. Not for forever.' Rachel's tired mind heard Andrew's words before she passed out. When Andrew picked up her limp body, there was tear pushing its way onto her cheek.