When Ewan O'Hara is found tortured in the woods, his sister has to help him complete his mission...even as she comes to terms with who he is and what they both are. Are the O'Hara siblings half-human or half-vampire? Is dhampir the right word? ...Or could Juliet and Ewan really be abominations?
Meanwhile, Shawn still doesn't understand why Lassiter chose him to be a beta wolf. Maybe neither of them ever will.
Sequel to Dusk, written for the forum's Halloween Whumpathon Challenge.
, Alternate Universe Characters:
Juliet, Lassiter, Other, Shawn
November 05, 2017 Updated:
January 09, 2018
This story is dedicated to Koohii Kappu. I thought for a long time about writing a spin-off of Dusk that would follow the adventures of Wolfy Shawn (who is, for your edification, nicknamed "Shulte"), but I would never have posted it this soon (or ever) if not for Koohii's encouragement. And for her challenging me to jump onboard the Whumpathon this year. So Koohii, this one's for you.
Besides, the Whumpathon theme this year is "A Vampire In Santa Barbara." How could I possibly resist? ;-)
And, since this is for the Whumpathon, let's slap a T rating on this baby for some fantasy violence, eh? ;-)
Disclaimer: I do not own Psych, nor do I own any of its characters, settings, trademarks, or related material. Psych and all related materials are the property of their respective owners. The plot and original characters of this story are my intellectual property. I am not associated with Psych, its creators, or any involved parties, nor am I associated with any other media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
1. Chapter 1 by PineappleHead
2. Chapter 2 by PineappleHead
3. Chapter 3 by PineappleHead
4. Chapter 4 by PineappleHead
5. Chapter 5 by PineappleHead
Chapter 1 by PineappleHead
This is probably going to be the only whump-heavy chapter, but there may be some more minor stuff scattered through the rest of the story. I swore to myself that I wouldn't post any more WIPs ever again, but...clearly I lied. *shrugs*
Prompts: Forest, impalement, bite, blunt force trauma, Ewan
Ewan had no way to be sure where they had taken him, but even before they took off the blindfold, he knew that he was somewhere deep in the wilderness. The rich dampness of rotting leaves, fresh moss, recent rain, and crushed pine needles formed a heady fragrance that distracted his senses. Whatever drug they had given him, it wasn’t something normal; any paralytic that could take him down had to have been specially-made.
Which meant that his captors weren’t from some kind of enemy nation or government agency. And it certainly meant that they weren’t human.
He tried to get a better scent from the masked attackers, but the drugs and the forest smells were interfering. He would just have to wait and see.
In and out of consciousness, sitting with his back against what seemed to be a damp tree stump, he had no idea how long he was held captive, but finally, someone stripped off the blindfold.
“He’s awake,” the man called, his hoarse voice and the scar across his throat betraying an old injury.
Another man approached, taller and leaner. Teeth glinted in the moonlight. A vampire. Like Ewan.
No; not like Ewan, because this man was full-blooded and Ewan was an---
“Abomination,” the vampire greeted him.
Ewan blinked and glanced around, pupils dilating until there was only a sliver of iris left to compensate for the near-total darkness. “What do you want?”
“You sound awfully brave for a man who’s going to die tonight.”
Ewan coughed involuntarily---a reaction to the drugs or the dampness, he couldn’t tell. “If you wanted me dead, you’d have killed me already.”
The vampire chuckled. “Very good. You’re right, Abomination. You won’t die until you tell me what I want to know.” In a blur so fast that a human wouldn’t have been able to see it, he rushed to Ewan’s side and grabbed the half-vampire’s throat. “I know that you’re the agent who stole the defense plans. I also know that you haven’t yet met with your contact from the government, which means that you must have hidden them somewhere. I want to know where they are.”
“That’s a great question and I’d love to help you out,” Ewan replied, “but unfortunately, I have no idea what you’re talking about, and even if I did, that would be treason. So how about you just let me go and I can get some coffee or something?”
The vampire chuckled and snapped his fingers. The hoarse-voiced human snapped a tree branch from a nearby maple and passed it to the vampire.
“I’m sure that you’ve been subjected to all kinds of human interrogation methods and survived,” the vampire said, “because for a human, you’re very strong. But I doubt you’ve ever been trained to handle a vampire’s methods… Because as far as vampires go, you’re deplorably weak.”
“You can give it your best shot, but I still don’t know anything,” Ewan replied, still trying to shake off the effects of whatever it was they’d given him.
As if unhearing, the vampire used his nails to file the branch to a point. Ewan knew what was coming, he squeezed his eyes shut---
The makeshift stake smashed into his shoulder, piercing the skin, punching a hole through the muscle. Veins severed, arteries snapped, Ewan’s blood spraying on the ground, the constant thirst magnified elevenfold---
Need to feed, need to heal---
Slick fangs slid from aching gums with a pop, elongating the canines, his mouth filled with saliva and his eyes with tears, because it hurt like---
The vampire twisted the branch and yanked it free of the wound, savage grin showing moonlight gleaming on his fangs. No, fang, because now through the pain Ewan could see that he only had one; the right one must have been lost somewhere along the way.
The sharpened branch stabbed through the center of Ewan’s chest now, pushing through hard enough to scrape his sternum, until Ewan feared that his bone would be crushed by the force. Until now, he’d managed not to scream, but his body was losing its ability to heal and his entire chest felt like it was on fire.
“Tell me what you did with those documents,” the one-fanged vampire hissed. “We weren’t finished with them yet.”
Ewan mentally filed this information away, just in case he managed to escape from this somehow. Vampires working with a domestic terrorist cell? Lovely.
“I don’t have your documents, and even if I did, I’d never give them to you,” Ewan snarled through the pain.
“We’ll see about that.” The vampire removed the branch from Ewan’s wound again, but this time, he swung it like a Louisville Slugger, and Ewan’s head was the baseball.
If Ewan had been fully human, his skull would be bouncing down the hillside by now, but thankfully the resiliency of vampiric tissue was keeping him alive, repairing his fractured neck---bone, tendons, nerves, blood vessels---almost as soon as it broke. But his body couldn’t last much longer; his neck and head had been healed at the expense of the gaping wound in his chest that was even now pouring out blood.
Desperately thirsty, Ewan could sense each and every creature within a mile radius of his senses, the scarred human man giving off the heat and scent of life and sweetness until saliva was pouring from Ewan’s unwilling jaws. If Ewan had the capability of motion, he would’ve attacked the man in a nanosecond, purely on instinct, purely a monster seeking nothing more than to survive.
But he couldn’t move, still paralyzed, and the thirst sending scorching waves of heat down the back of his throat was quite literally killing him.
The other vampire fed on the human right there in front of him, sinking that lone fang deep into the soft carotid artery, absorbing life-force directly from the source, stealing the healing elixir that Ewan so desperately needed if he wanted to live for much longer. Within seconds, the human fell unconscious, crumpling to the ground, precious drops of redness oozing from the slit in his throat as the minuscule cut sealed over.
The enemy captor made a show of licking his lips and stained fang as he smirked at Ewan. “Are you ready to tell me what I want to know? I’ll ask you again: where are the documents?” His smile turned mocking, eyes cold. “I know you must be starving. Tell me, and you’ll live.”
Mutely, Ewan shook his head, not daring to breathe or open his mouth lest the ache in his throat become more intense.
The other vampire forced his jaw open. “Answer me! Now!”
Despite the burning pain of scenting human blood so close in this state, Ewan shook his head again. “No.” The word came out cracked and dry like the desert wind assaulting Ewan’s throat.
Grunting, the vampire shoved Ewan back and paced around him in a circle. “I have to confess, you’re stronger than I expected. But if you won’t give me the information, then I don’t have a use for you, Abomination. And your human blood will be the end of you.”
Reaching into the inner pockets of his long black trench coat, the vampire produced a metal stake. Shiny, and likely silver---toxic in very high quantities. Ewan was no fool. He knew that the stake wasn’t going to be used as a party decoration. He tried to writhe away, but even though his range of motion was returning, he was in no condition to move very far. The vampire rammed the stake right through Ewan’s midsection, pinning him to the dead tree.
As Ewan shouted in pain, the vampire bit down onto Ewan’s neck.
He screamed in raw agony, struggling to get away, but the stake had him pinned and the vampire’s jaws were clamped tight.
For humans and most other creatures, the experience of being fed upon by a vampire is usually somewhat pleasurable. The chemicals in vampire saliva act as a mild painkiller and offer a sedative effect, along with causing the release of a few minor endorphins. But for a vampire---
The chemicals racing through Ewan’s bloodstream were toxins, and his every vein, every artery, every capillary raged as if caught in a wildfire. Unimaginable suffering, worse than being held in a Siberian underground prison for six months, worse than anything except for being held at gunpoint by his own sister---
That last thought gave Ewan pause, grounded him somehow, gave him the strength to silence his screams even as he felt his life essence being drained away. If he died here, at least Juliet would be safe…
He snarled, one last act of rebellion and defiance, as he steeled himself for impending death.
Another snarl echoed through the woods a split second later, right as Ewan lost consciousness and his world went black.
Chapter 2 by PineappleHead
Hurry up! Lassiter snarled, shaking the ruff of thick salt-and-pepper fur around his neck. You’re going to make us lose!
Behind the massive dark gray wolf, a much smaller and skinnier wolf with pale brown fur struggled up the hill, panting with his pink tongue dangling slack from his jaws. Just… Just go on without me, Lassie, I’ll catch up later.
We have to win the race as a team, Spencer! That was the whole point of this exercise!
Yeah, well, Shawn huffed, this exercise is dumb.
Lassiter set his jaw, showing off his sharp teeth in a scissors bite. As he stalked upwards through the chaparral, he growled low in his canine throat. Agreed.
He took in a long breath of cool mountain air, inhaling the variety of scents, sifting through them until he identified the one he was looking for. She isn’t that far ahead of us. We can still make it! He charged upwards through the brush, powerful leg muscles urging him onward with forceful springs.
Shawn took a deep breath, coiled his own back legs, and prepared to leap forward after Lassiter. Another deep breath, and he sprang!
…and promptly caught his bushy long tail in some kind of thorny tangle. A yelp of pain squeaked past his jaws.
Lassiter twisted his head over his shoulder, blue eyes glaring back at Shawn with all the iciness of the snowflakes that were beginning to fall. Really, Spencer?
Sorry, Shawn whimpered again as he tried to extricate himself from the overgrown briars. Help me, Lassie! I'm stuck! I think I’m bleeding!
The gray wolf rolled his eyes and stalked back to his companion, ears flattened. Calm down and cut it with the drama queen act, would you? She’s running circles around us. Carefully, he nosed his muzzle into the thorns and pushed the canes backwards. All right, now pull yourself out.
Shawn wriggled forward a bit, wincing as he tried with no avail to tug his tail free. Yowch! It hurts!
Of course it hurts. What did you expect?
Don’t be so grouchy, Lassie. It’s not my fault that you got me hurt on my first wolfing expedition.
“Wolfing” is not a word, Spencer.
I’ve heard it both ways.
Would you can it and pull yourself out already? Stop being such a child!
“You should do it fast, like a Band-Aid,” a nearby voice suggested. Both sets of wolf ears pricked up, swiveling towards the sound as the men glanced up to see Juliet leaning back against a scrub oak, smiling smugly. Her smile widened as she heard a half-hearted attempt at a manly growl from the skinny brown wolf. “I really wish I could speak werewolf at times like this.”
No, you don’t, Lassiter rumbled despite knowing that she wouldn’t understand him.
Juliet wrapped her hands around Shawn’s furry shoulders. “Okay, I’ll help you pull yourself out. On the count of three. One…”
Shawn nodded and lifted a paw, steeling himself for “three.”
“Two!” Juliet said quickly, yanking Shawn forward at that exact moment.
The brown wolf yelped again, whirling to see tufts of fur clinging to the brambles. Spinning in a circle, he tried to check his tail for bald spots. Jules! You said you’d pull on three! he whined.
Laughing, Juliet pictured all the things that could be running through Shawn’s mind. “Sorry, Shawn. It was for your own good.”
My beta wolf is chasing his tail, Lassiter remarked glumly. This entire trip was a waste.
No, it wasn’t. Look on the bright side, Shawn replied as he came to a standstill. We're still getting some fresh air in the beautiful San Gabriel Mountains, right?
Lassiter snorted. We’re in the San Rafael Mountains, you idiot.
I’ve heard it both ways, and since you personally chose me to be your beta---without my consent or anything---you should probably be nicer to me, Lassie.
Help me, O’Hara. End my life and spare me from any more of this idiocy.
Juliet had no idea what Lassiter’s growls actually meant, but from the way he butted his head against her leg, he must have been pretty frustrated. She ran a hand through the soft fur between his large velvety ears. “Cheer up, Carlton! You should relax while we’re on this trip. Loosen up a little. This vacation might do you a lot of good.”
Before Lassiter could open his jaws to reply, a resounding shout echoed through the woods, sending every hair along his back to stand on end. And he wasn’t the only one to hear it; Shawn’s scruffy brown hackles rose as well, and even O’Hara stiffened in concern.
“What was that?” she whispered with a sinking feeling.
I don’t know, O’Hara, Lassiter answered as he began to push his way through the undergrowth. But we should probably find out.
Chapter 3 by PineappleHead
Thank you so much for all your support for this story! I'm both shocked and delighted to have such a great reaction to a story whose idea started off as an inside joke. Your responses mean a lot to me!
Ewan wasn’t sure what was happening. He wasn’t sure about anything except the pain. But something dark and heavy flashed past him, a rush of air hissing past his face, forcing the one-fanged vampire to the ground with a thud and the crack of bones. With the vampire gone, the pain eased slightly. Gasping for air, Ewan tried to look around, but his vision was distorted and fuzzy, just patches of light and dark. He tried to calm himself down enough to check for scents. His mouth was tingling, fangs still extended, so his body must have sensed something nearby even if his conscious mind wouldn’t register it. But what could’ve possibly taken down a vampire?
Something was drawing close to him---two somethings. And he was defenseless.
His foggy mind awakened his senses enough for him to recognize a thick earthy scent coming near: werewolf.
Grunting, he managed to heave a single word past his lips: “Help.”
“Ewan!” a peach-scented whisper floated back.
“Ewan, stay still, it’ll be all right.”
Juliet looked at Shawn, stormy blue eyes silently pleading.
The wolf’s hazel eyes looked back at her, watching her for a moment before he dipped his lupine head in understanding. Gingerly, he sat close to Juliet’s wounded brother and reached out with one forepaw.
The reaction was immediate. Instinctively, Ewan snapped his fangs into the arteries of the brown wolf’s furry leg. The neck vein would’ve been better, but his deepest survival urges were crying out for blood, and the monster inside Ewan wasn’t going to be picky. He drank deep, consumed by thirst and the need to heal, and he barely felt any pain at all when his sister slid the stake out of his flesh with a sickening, wet pop. The werewolf slumped beside him, rapidly being drained away.
Warm hands shook his shoulder.
He ignored it.
“Ewan! You have to stop! You’ll kill him!”
Something slammed into Ewan hard, knocking him away from his prey. A second werewolf, much bigger than the first with nearly-black fur and cold eyes, was standing over the weak scrap of pale brown fur, teeth bared and slicked with vampire blood.
So this was what had taken Ewan’s captor down.
The military agent shook himself, willing the monster away, fighting to regain control. He was healed now; slaking his thirst could wait. He took an experimental breath through his nose and found himself able to function. Scents washed over him, scents he recognized.
“Lassiter?” Ewan coughed. “Why are you here? Juliet?” Blinking, he gestured to the brown body lying between Lassiter’s front paws. “Is he going to be okay?”
Juliet nodded slowly. “I think so. Shawn’s pretty strong. He should be okay in a minute or two.” She glanced over her shoulder at Lassiter, feeling relieved when her partner dipped his head in agreement.
“What, you mean that’s Shawn? Shawn Spencer, from the SBPD? How is that possible?” Ewan demanded. “Shawn’s a human!”
“Shawn was a human,” Juliet clarified, feeling unusually stiff in front of her brother now that he was back to his old self. “We had a run-in with some…some vampire hunters last year, and---well, during the---the incident, Carlton, um…ended up biting him.”
“Vampire hunters?” Ewan echoed. His eyes narrowed as he scrutinized his sister. “Don't you mean dhampir hunters?"
Juliet had to force herself not to flinch. “It doesn’t matter what they were. What matters is that they’re gone and we all made it out okay.”
“Juliet,” Ewan began.
She cut him off. “Let’s not do this right now. This isn’t the time. We need to---we need to get you out of here.”
“Right,” her brother replied cautiously. “Look, Juliet… Thank you for rescuing me. I don’t know what I would’ve done if you and your friends hadn’t been there.”
“It was nothing,” she whispered.
Ewan pushed on. “But I don’t know what I’m dealing with here. I don’t know who these people are---or why a human and a vampire are working together---or even how they found me in the first place, but this is dangerous. All of this is dangerous. My entire mission is dangerous.”
“And that’s all you think about, isn’t it? Your mission,” Juliet said coldly. “You’re still guilty of obstruction of justice and attempted murder, Ewan O’Hara.”
Ewan stared her down, the essence of control and restraint as always. “What are you going to do, Juliet? Arrest me again?”
Behind her, a low growl---Lassiter snarling, hackles raised and lips curled back to fully reveal his rows of canine teeth. Snarling as if to say, She doesn’t have to do anything because I will.
It was all Ewan could do to stop himself from growling back or shifting to a defensive stance, but he stood his ground and stared into his sister’s ocean eyes, storm clouds meeting the churning horizon of the sea.
“Why don’t you tell me everything from the beginning? Maybe then I can help you,” she pleaded at last.
“I can’t,” he said quietly. “Even if I wanted to, I don’t know everything.”
“Then tell me what you do know.”
Ewan slowly shook his head. “I can’t. I’m sorry.”
“Well… What are we going to do with---them?” she gestured to the two unconscious hostiles still prone on the damp ground.
“I honestly don’t know,” Ewan admitted. “My training never prepared me for attacks from other supernaturals. I don’t even know where to start.”
“Do you at least know what they wanted from you? What were they trying to find out?”
“No idea,” Ewan forced out the lie.
Juliet’s eyes flashed in disappointment, but there was nothing else he could do.
Something itched at the corners of Ewan’s mind…his soldier sense flaring up. That was usually not a good sign. “I need to report this to my superior ASAP.” He hesitated when he reached into his pocket to discover that his cell phone had been shattered. “May I use your phone?”
Juliet handed him the phone as if she were offering him a venomous snake.
“Thanks, sis. Stay here. I’ll be right back.”
She didn’t need to ask why; obviously he was going to get well out of hearing range before he made the call.
Behind her, Lassiter’s low growl echoed once again in the mountain forest.
Chapter 4 by PineappleHead
I don’t like this, O’Hara. I don’t like this, and I don’t like him. Look what he did to Spencer! Lassiter growled.
Beside Lassiter's big paws, Shawn groaned and began to stir. Lassie? he said groggily. Why are you standing over me like an old dead goose?
Are you all right, Spencer? Lassiter asked, stepping back to give the brown wolf some space.
Yeah, ‘m fine. Since when do you care? If I remember this right, then you were the last person to bite me in the leg up til now. Are you getting jealous?
Lassiter snorted. He’s fine.
Juliet sighed and watched her brother walk away, biting her lip. Oblivious to the wolves’ exchange, she was still lost in thought. “Carlton, what can we do about this? I mean, we have no idea who these people are or what they want or what they were doing with Ewan… And it’s not like we can report this or anything.”
Lassiter’s felty ears flattened back against his skull and he shifted his paws. Well… We could report it, O’Hara, but…
Juliet nodded slowly, guessing Lassiter’s thoughts. “If we did something drastic like report it to the District Council, then---then that might just draw back more attention on me and Ewan.”
And that’s something that none of us want, Lassiter confirmed, dipping his head. We’re better off leaving this situation as is. His tail twitched as he added, Besides, I bet your big brother and his government cronies have got this situation well in hand.
“I just worry about all of it, Carlton. I don’t know what to do or what to think anymore.”
Shawn got to his feet, shaking off the last of his wooziness, and limped to Juliet’s side. We’ll take care of you, Jules. It’ll be okay. Then he cast a glance back at Lassiter. So, what’s the deal with this Council thing anyway? Is it like the Wesen council thingy from Grimm? Because Gus and I love that show. The fox lady? Totally hot!
Lassiter rolled his eyes. Fuchsbau.
Shawn blinked. What?
The pretty fox girl from Grimm. She’s a Fuchsbau.
Whoa, whoa, wait a minute, Lassie. How do you know that?
I watch TV too, Spencer! Lassiter growled. And anyway, the District Council is the highest local authority for supernaturals. It runs almost parallel to the District Court system---with a few additions. We’ll get to it later. Right now, the important thing is figuring what to do about this twisted-up O’Hara family reunion.
Juliet groaned in frustration. “This is so unfair! I need a way to understand what you guys are saying!”
We could always shift back, I guess, Lassiter grumbled.
With no clothes?! Uh, no thank you, Lassie! I don’t wanna see you naked.
Juliet’s lip curled in a hint of a pout that sent Shawn into heart palpitations. “I hate feeling so left out.”
Sorry, O’Hara. Lassiter nudged her hand with his long blunt muzzle.
She smiled. “Your nose is cold.”
Speaking of noses… Shawn took a deep breath, scenting the air. Something was different. Something...had changed. You’ve got to be kidding me! Without wasting a second, the brown wolf charged into the woods, hot on Ewan’s trail with his nose in the air.
“Shawn, wait up!” He distantly heard Juliet calling, but didn’t slow down. It was as if he were possessed; he couldn’t figure out why he was so determined to run down this scent, but for whatever reason, his every instinct urged him to charge down the trail. His ears pricked; Lassiter was closing in behind him, breathing hard. Shawn wondered if his “fearless leader” could determine what Shawn had sensed up ahead in the woods.
After several yards, Shawn skidded to a stop in the mossy earth, causing Lassiter to nearly bowl him over as the bigger wolf struggled to slow his momentum.
“What is it, Shawn?” Juliet asked, half-crouched in a defensive position that made her seem more feral than human. “Where’s Ewan?”
Exactly, Shawn growled as he scanned the area, more with his nose than his eyes. He’s just gone. It’s like he vanished right into thin air. See? Even his scent’s starting to get stale.
Lassiter’s blue eyes widened as he snorted down air to scent for himself. You’re right. He’s been gone for a while. How did he get away without us noticing? He didn’t walk very far! We should’ve heard him running!
“He teleported,” Juliet breathed. “I can’t believe it. I--- I didn’t know he could do that. But---he must have. I would have noticed him running if he’d left any other way.”
He can teleport?! Shawn squeaked.
That would explain a lot, Lassiter said.
Abruptly, the fur on Shawn’s legs began to disappear, shrivelling back into his skin, sucked into the pores with a sound like wet spaghetti. His bones began to crunch and grind against each other as his body reshaped itself, shifting into a human form. “Not again!” Shawn cried, but the sound was distorted as his vocal cords caught in transition between man and wolf. His muscles changed shape and the flesh shifted as his body completed the transformation from canine to human in a matter of seconds. The only things that remained unchanged were his warm hazel eyes.
Fully human and fully naked, Shawn rubbed his jaw and shivered. “Man! Now I’ve got to freeze until we get all the way back down the mountain and get to the car so I can put my clothes back on.” Blushing, he quickly moved behind a bush. “Sorry, Jules.”
I’m going to be so glad when you’ve learned to control your transformations better…even if that might be a long wait, knowing how easily you get distracted, Spencer, Lassiter grumbled, shaking his pelt.
Shawn glared at Lassiter for a second before he shrugged. “You know, Lassie, as my pack brother, you should lend my some of your fur to keep me warm.”
Lassiter’s only reaction was a snap of his jaws.
“Save me, Jules!”
Juliet rolled her eyes. “Will you two please stop fighting already? We’ve got two unconscious hostiles and my brother is still missing.”
Waving his tail in agreement, Lassiter led the group back to the stump and the clearing where Ewan had been held captive. Both the human and his vampire boss were still unconscious on the ground, just as the trio had left them.
As they approached the clearing, Lassiter sprang forward and sniffed at the one-fanged vampire. I’ve got bad news, O’Hara. I think he’s dead.
“What are we going to do?” Shawn asked, bouncing up and down to keep warm in the frigid mountain air.
Frustrated, Juliet allowed her hands to slide to her hips. “Shawn, you’ve got to tell me what Carlton’s saying. You know that I can’t understand him as a wolf, so while you’re in human form, I’m depending on you as a translator. Please!”
“Sorry, Jules. Lassie says that he thinks the vamp is dead.” Shawn took a long sniff of the air. “And I’m pretty sure he’s right.”
She sighed and ran a hand over her face. “That’s not good.”
Lassiter shook his shaggy head. We’ll have to burn the body. We can’t risk any humans finding it.
Shawn glanced at Juliet. “Lassie says we’ll have to burn the body. And also, he might have fleas.”
I do not have fleas!
“He might have given them to me.”
Lassiter snarled, taking one menacing step towards his beta wolf.
“Boys!” Juliet hissed, exposing her sleek white fangs in a feral threat. Both werewolves whimpered and stared at her in silence. After a beat, she straightened herself up, adjusting the collar of her pale pink sweater as she retracted her fangs. “Much better. Now that I have your attention, I’ll take care of the vampire. You two go check on the human.”
“Guess we know who the real alpha in this pack is,” Shawn muttered under his breath as Juliet sped away, running through the brush faster than any cheetah.
Lassiter didn’t say a word to deny it. After all, what was there to say?
Chapter 5 by PineappleHead
Sorry for the short chappie. Hopefully I'll get in some more writing time soon, but I wanted to go ahead and post this to tide you over.
Ewan wandered down the dusky street, hands in his pockets. It was well after eleven o’clock in Las Vegas, but the city still seemed bustling, teeming with people. Cities never sleep; they just get a little drowsy in the dark and shake it off again with the pallor of the morning.
He hadn’t told his sister a lie; he really did report the attack to his superior. He left out most of the major details, but the US government needed to know that the domestic terrorist cell they were trying to bring down was still trying to get those Pentagon defense plans back, and they’d need to push the meeting with his contact forward to minimize the risk of another breach. He couldn’t exactly report that the threat came from vampires, of all things, but hey, he’d given it his best shot.
But obviously, he hadn’t walked away from his sister for privacy reasons. He’d planned to travel the Ether as soon as he found the chance. Just like his good-for-nothing excuse for a dad would have.
He just kept on disappointing Juliet, didn’t he? He could see it in her eyes. Disappointed in his choices, in his career… Disappointed in dhampir.
Inside his denim pockets, Ewan’s fists clenched. Dhampir is not a dirty word.
How could she possibly be so much like Frank?
Yeah, sure, she’d loved the guy as a kid, but she’d been a kid, and all kids love their fathers without question. But surely when she grew up, she’d recognized Frank for what he was. Not just a conman and a criminal, but a leech. A monster who’d cursed his children to suffer being trapped between two worlds with both of those worlds out to kill them, cursed his children to be inhuman monsters just like him.
Ewan’s jaw tightened until his teeth began to hurt. He knew what he needed. He still had toxins in his system and he wasn’t fully healed. His head was fuzzy. His throat felt like he’d been gargling acid and it wouldn’t stop until he physically assaulted another living creature. Drained it of its life-force while still raw and breathing and heart-pumping. Ewan needed to drink blood and he hated himself for it. Hated Frank O’Hara for marrying a human and procreating. The only good thing that man ever did was become the progenitor of Juliet O’Hara, and that was the truth.
Yeah. Ewan liked the word “dhampir” for the same reason that Juliet hated it. A dhampir was half-human. A separate creature from a vampire, not at all the same. Dhampir, accepting the traits of mortality, fragility, humanity. So what if vampires considered dhampirs to be unworthy of existence? So what if dhampirs were weaker and would die natural deaths of old age like a real human, instead of living forever unless killed? There was nothing wrong with being mortal, being truly alive and natural. Being human was all that Ewan had ever wanted. So why did Juliet insist that she was a half-vampire?
No! Ewan wanted to scream. No, Jule, you’re not a half-vampire, you’re a half-human!
He walked into a sleazy-looking bar, mind churning. 100% stereotypical Vegas, this joint was, with brick-red ceiling lights and a haze of tobacco smoke rolling through the air. He took a seat at the bar, straddling the black plastic stool, drumming his fingers on the marble counter. A blonde in a green dress sat beside him. Swathes of deep brown were showing through in her roots and her spray-tanned left hand had a pale streak around her ring finger. He tried to avoid making eye contact even though she was all-too-obviously ogling him. She was either freshly divorced or looking to have an affair in Sin City, but either way, Ewan could tell what she wanted. Even beneath all those layers of cheap perfume, he could scent the pheromones she was radiating. He had no intentions of indulging her, but he hated himself for what he was about to do.
He glanced at her. “Can I buy you a drink?”
An hour or two later, she was asleep on a hotel bed and Ewan had just put a Band-Aid over the puncture wounds in her neck. She’d have no memory of what happened, but her brain would make up a pretty story for her. And Ewan would be long gone. In and out, like a ghost. That’s what Frank always said.
Cursing his father silently, Ewan willed himself to become ethereal and whisked himself back to the Santa Barbara area. He had a government contact to catch up with.
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