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Devouring the Heart by Keya

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Fire in the blood
Passion's in the flame
Burning coyly around you
Say my name,


Rain fell, a light shower to dampen the day, and turn Cassandra's light mood into ebony. Her heart thundered rapidly with dread. Big salty tears swelled, and her hands shook with barely controlled frenzy. Being stuck inside her Aunt Lucy's house was hell, pure and simple. Her cousin Sam, bless his soul, tried calming her, but, of course, failed.

She needed to run freely among the trees and alongside the ocean, and not sit, bored, watching Sam read his favorite comic books and grandfather cook his kick-ass chili, the kind that made you wish a river would open up, and swallow you whole.

Closing her eyes, Cassandra counted to ten, and opened them, her gaze following a fly, going up and down, up and down, and then, whack! Good old fly met Aunt Lucy's newspaper, a fitting end to the drama that was Cassandra's day.

And thank heaven, the day was over. According to the clock, 6:30, the night was young, and Cassandra was ready to go.

"I'm leaving!" Cassandra yelled on the top of her lungs, and opened the front door, frowning when she saw the rain pounding against the earth. It would seem fate was against her, and had decided to make the sprinkle a downpour.

Sighing, Cassandra looked up towards the sky, cursing under her breath. Oh, well, one wet pooch was another's best friend, or at least, Cassandra hoped. Marco would be the judge of that, but Cassandra guaranteed that if Marco, or any of the other brothers, for that matter, denied her the warmth of the cave, she would howl and rage and bite the nearest butt.

Jumping, Cassandra allowed herself to change. A slow, painful feeling overcame her body, like being pinched all over, and suddenly, Cassandra was running on four muddy legs, heading towards home.

Anna laughed. She couldn't help it. The sight of the drenched dog walking stiff-legged into the cave, her eyes blazing, ears glued to her head, and teeth showing, was too much, even for her. The wolf glared at the laughing vampire, and in front of Anna's eyes, molded herself into a human, long hair, eyes golden, and lips frowning.

The transformation always managed to shock the hell out of Anna, and fascinated her, all at the same time, because of the way it looked. One moment the wolf was normal and then, suddenly, its body shifted, growing smaller, maturing, and eyes showing more characteristics of a human in its depths.

The girl before her was thin, almost too thin since the latest attacks from the "shadows," beings that seemed to come out of nowhere, and have only one objective, to kill the protector for reasons unknown, and, unfortunately, Anna was the protector.

Cassandra still wore her hair long, despite Marco's wish to see it short. Her eyes were piercing, and her face was set in a somber expression as Cassandra fell onto the bed, and closed her eyes, not bothering herself to ask where the guys were.

Since the attacks, Anna noticed that the young girl was slowly fading away, lack of sleep, and nightmares could do that to you, or at least, Anna thought that was the case. Cassandra was often quiet, too quiet for the brothers, and that was one of the reasons why David had called a meeting between them. A meeting to calm, and smooth over the doubts and fears that had been a daily, err, nightly occasion for them all.

"You need not worry about me."

Anna took a sip of blood, and asked the question that was on her mind.

"Did you dream last night?"

"Yes."

"What does it mean?"

Opening her eyes, Cassandra stared at the rocky ceiling. She knew what it meant. A pack had sensed her presence, and would now come for her. She was wolf, not vampire, and they would try to take her away, and there was something else, she dreamt of a person, Jolene, an old friend.

Sighing, Cassandra got up, and began to pace. She was afraid, and the ironic thing was, she wasn't scared of the shadows, no, the shadows could be stopped, she was afraid of her own kind, and what they would bring to her blood family.

Sounds of laugher filled the air, and Cassandra looked up to see the boys flying towards them, Marco, and Dwayne in the lead.

Marco landed gracefully in front of Cassandra, and she gave him a quick kiss in greetings. Anna smiled, the two rarely kissed in front of the pack, partly because of shyness, but mostly because Paul would tease them endlessly.

Dwayne, and Anna were another matter entirely, and it took several moments for the both of them to be able to talk.

"Listen up, pack meeting in session," David said, easing his tall frame into a crouch, lips curved into a mocking grin.

Anna blinked, suddenly disbelieving what she saw. A girl stood beside David, transparent, but clear to both Anna and Cassandra, her hand lightly touching David's hair, her smile wicked, but not cruel.

Anna looked over to Cassandra, feeling her blood sister's awe. Whoever the girl was, Cassandra knew her, and knew her well.
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