Monday, April 24, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 8: MISERY


In the mist and the fog of the night a woman named Anna Take, consumed by the furies of an immortal phoenix  made her way through the village with only one thing on her mind. She needed to make sure Sebastian, the lycan,  transformed again, the souls she needed to release the spirit of the phoenix deep in side of her, the soul of Laura Collins needed the plan to work.

She slowly walked up the small path that lead to Sebastian's apartment door. She noticed the plants and shrubs that surrounded the door had been ripped up or destroyed. In fact, the entire entry way seemed disheveled. A possible by product of Sebastian's beastly alter ego.

Anna opened the door that was left slightly open. She walked in and saw that the apartment was overturned, ransacked, a complete mess. There were no lights on except for the television that had been left on to the evening news from Bangor.

"Police report of body found on the lawn of a mansion in Collinsport this evening; a possible victim of a wild animal attack. There is no word yet on what the animal might have been only that the family that lives in that mansion is well known in the town, and may have had this happen several months earlier in the same fashion....." the television reporter said trailing off into the story of Victor Reed's death a year and a half go.

Anna continued through Sebastian's apartment, and there he was. Laying almost  naked on the floor, exhausted and scratched up, his eyes open, his body trembling.

Anna knelt down, her true self felt terrible pity for him, but Laura's spirit, the spirit she was born with inside of her would not allow that pity to last for long. He was made this way for a purpose, she needed him to be the monster she created and the duality of her personality battled against what she was doing to him.

"It'll all be over soon. I promise." Anna said as she stroked his head.

"Why....why are you doing this to me?" Sebastian asked.

"You mustn't see this as a punishment Sebastian. You are the chosen one, the one I need to release what is inside of me. I've searched for you for years, and when I got to Collinsport, I just knew you'd be the one to bring me the souls I need." Anna said in a creepy soft tone of voice.

"I killed someone today." Sebastian replied.

"For a good reason. It's all for a good reason." Anna said sternly.

Anna's heart wasn't all evil. She was in fact, a real person before all of this happened to her. She grew up in a happy home with a mother and father but she was always different. Laura's soul had been trapped in her body all her life, it was as if she was living a double life. She had the memories and the history of Laura but was living the present and the future as Anna. The complicated battle in her mind of which personality would reign over the day caused her anguish and loneliness.

Anna, the real Anna, was falling in love with Sebastian. Her sympathy and care was doing all it could to out maneuver and over power Laura's rage.

"All she wants is to be with her son, once Laura and David are reunited, it'll be over and you will have saved me. That's what matters." Anna said.

"How much more?" Sebastian said, the worry in his voice spilling out into the air.

"Five more Sebastian. Just five and we'll be free of Laura forever." She replied.

"I don't know if I can take five more lives. I can't do this to people. I promised my sister I was changed." Sebastian said finally lifting himself off the floor to look Anna in the eye.

"If we don't free Laura, we can't be together. Just you and me...she needs to be free Sebastian, otherwise, I'll be locked away like this and never be who I was supposed to be." Anna explained.

"But to kill people?" Sebastian asked.

The question left Anna breathless. She started to feel warm and a bit light headed. She knew the feeling, it wasn't something she had never experienced before. It was Laura pushing herself through to greet Sebastian once more. Anna's eyes quickly flashed a bright red light and just like that, like the snap of a finger, Laura was there.

"Listen to me lycan, I've known the likes of you before. You need to be free of this curse too, and the only way you can do that is if I do that for you. You can have Anna, you can have her forever, but the only way is if you do what I've asked of you. Bring the the last 5 souls and Anna is free of me, and you'll be free of this curse. There is no other option." Laura said from Anna's body as Sebastian stay on the floor staring up at her in confusion.

Anna, still under Laura's control grabbed the locket around her neck and closed it inside of her hand. She shut her eyes and lifted one hand that started to heat up, it grew hotter and hotter until the visible strands of heat could be seen. Her hair lit up like a flaming torch, he skin burned like lave and Sebastian stood up, still disheveled from his earlier transformation and stepped forward. The wave of heat blocked him from getting closer to Anna as he reached for her.

"Once more you'll change into the wolf, and come to the house of Loomis McGovern. Bring me his soul. Bring me his soul." Laura said in Anna's voice, her eyes glowing red like two white hot suns.

Sebastian fell to his knees in pain, the hair from his body began to grow again, the teeth in  his mouth began to spike out like knives, his eyes turned to a yellow and red gaze, his feet and hands turned to powerful paws. The curse was transforming him again, and now Loomis, Kat's partner was in his cross hairs.

The wolf growled and snarled at Laura, and knew of the task at hand. He howled a horrible howl and dashed past Anna out the open front door again to find his next soul.

****

The long night grew even loner and the old house, so many years desolate and left in disrepair until it's faithful owner refurbished it, was alive with activity. Barnabas' new wife Jacqueleen had began to make her stake in the old mansion by drawing up changes to suit her taste. 

"What do you think, of this color darling? It would make lovely drapes for the drawing room." Jacqueleen said passing a swatch of cloth to Barnabas who was sitting in a chair smoking a cigarette under the light of a candelabra.

"I am in no mood to nest with you Jacqueleen. Don't get too comfortable, because as soon as I can figure out how to get rid of you, I will." He answered coldly.

Jacqueleen smiled rebelliously and got up from the sofa and walked over to Barnabas then took his cigarette from his hand.

"And that would be your undoing, I've already told you that the minute you try and take from me the things that I am owed I will make it so that the world knows what you are. And they'll come for you Barnabas. They'll come for you and they'll destroy you forever." She said puffing at his cigarette.

"Maybe that's a good thing. Removing me from this hell you've placed me in. I was happy, finally! I was free of this curse for decades and the second I encounter you, you turn me back in to the thing I hate most. This cold hungry ...." Barnabas said before he was interrupted by Jacqueleen.

"And what did you create of me? Look at me! You did the same thing to me and then tried to bury me in the forest like some piece of trash. Do you really believe that this is the life I wanted. Here? With you forever?" Jacqueleen screeched.

"Isn't it? In 1920 you tried to seduce me. You tried everything you could to get your claws into me and you succeed, you just didn't know that I had claws too." Barnabas reminded her.

"Fangs." Jacqueleen corrected as she moved away from Barnabas to the roaring fire place.

Her beautiful dress, now in a modern style shined in the heat from the hearth. She looked into the fire, that reflected the red hot coals and flames just before  her. She realized the mess she had made for herself. She realized the mistake she had made and now she was paying for it too...but she would not allow herself to be the only one to suffer and far be it for Barnabas to know exactly how she felt. If she was unhappy she would make the world unhappy with her.

"Misery loves company." she whispered to herself as the fire crackled.

She turned around and looked at Barnabas again, her eyes filled with the puddled of coming tears. Her thoughts only on the family she knew back in her own time of 1920.

"I'll never see my daughter Catherine again. I'll never see my grand-daughter Elizabeth again. She was ...she was my heart and soul, and I'll never see her grow up. You took them from me Barnabas, and for that I have to make you suffer too. We're bound now, for life. This is your doing, not mine." Jacqueleen said, turning her face back towards the fire.

"You forget that Carolyn and David are your great-grandchildren. For what it's worth, at least you'll get to know them and their own families. They're wonderful people. They've never seen me for all that I am, David is very stubborn and Carolyn has a powerful resolve in her...perhaps those are parts them they've inherited of you too." Barnabas said trying to soften the blow of Jacqueleen's despair. 

Jacqueleen was a product of the past. Living so far into the future was going to be difficult for her to manage and become accustomed to, but her stubbornness and resolve of which Barnabas spoke were no match for the strain of being one of the undead, after all, Barnabas knew the pain of being inside this curse for centuries of his life. The guilt of creating Jacqueleen like him ate him up, and she was prepared to use that guilt to her advantage. 

As the two "newly weds" spoke in the drawing room, the front door burst open. It was Siobhan, Barnabas' daughter with Julia Hoffman. She came in with news of Laura, but was in for another shock when she saw her father sitting in the drawing room of the old house....young again. Young and a vampire.

"Father!!" She screamed at the site of him.....what...what's happened to you?" Siobhan asked confused at the situation in front of her. "Who is this?" she asked again questions and panic flowing from her mouth like a waterfall. 

"Siobhan! Darling, I was hoping Xander would have reached you before you came home." Barnabas said standing up and coming towards a weary Siobhan.

"Stay back...." his daughter said unsure of what she was seeing.

"Darling it's me. It's your father. I...." Barnabas said not knowing how to explain how he changed back.

"You're young again. When I left you, you were ...you were your age! How did this happen?" Siobhan asked staring deep in the youthful face of the father she thought was in his 90s. "You've been turned back?" Siohban continued; her father with sadness in her eyes.

"It looks that way, yes." Barnabas equally as disappointed responded. 

"All of mother's work is just gone, just like that? We can do it again. Maybe we can get the cure for you again and re-stage it." Siobhan offered.

"The synthetic serum that we used has been destroyed. After Dr. Lo saw what your mother and I did, and what I was, he feared we'd come for him again. He destroyed every last bit of it. It looks like this is what I was meant to be. Forever, locked in this curse." Barnabas said. 

"I....." Siobhan started but paused.

"Please don't say anything. Just know that I am still the man that raised you. The man that you saw grow old in Singapore. I am still that man Siobhan." Barnabas said to his daughter.

"I don't know what to say." Siobhan said warring over the fact her father was now back to his old self, a self she had never really known.

"Sometimes a curse takes years to plan its resurgence. It took mine almost 40." Barnabas said thinking back on the 40 some years he was cured. "This is Jacqueleen. She'll be living with us." He added as he introduced his daughter to his new vampire bride.

"Pleasure." Jacqueleen said with an evil grin.

"She's like me. We have to keep her safe here. The world isn't ready for two of us." Barnabas explained.

Siobhan looked confused. Then her mind started to add two-and-two together slowly connecting the dots in her mind.

"You and her..???..Were you responsible for what happened last night? On the grounds here?" Siobhan said remembering something David had mentioned as they left the restaurant about a man found dead on the ground of Collinsport that same night."

"What? A man dead?" Barnabas asked completely in the dark about what happened.

"How did this happen to you?" Siobhan asked of Jacqueleen, her suspicions of her father and his new wife now running rampant in her mind.

Jacqueleen thought about it for a second. She could be vengeful and tell Siobhan all the sorted details of what Barnabas did to her: that he was the man that created her this way; placing her into an eternity of damnation under the same curse that haunted his whole life, but there was something about how his demeanor changed when Siobhan entered the room that made her change her mind.

Barnabas' was protective of his daughter, it was a rare softness that he offered, and for all the anger she had towards him she could not bring herself to break that sensation in the room, so instead she would be vague, and allow Siobhan to figure it out on her own. With a trap.

"It's a long story darling. One that maybe one day you'll learn, or maybe one day you won't. If it's all the same just know that a man I loved turned me into this, and now we're like this together." Jacqueleen said, obviously hinting at Barnabas.

"A man. My Father? Does she mean you? Did you do this to her?" Siobhan said, her facial expression hinting at horror.

Siobhan had always know what her father was in the past. Before her. Before she was born, the actual terror and reality of seeing what he was never something she expected. It was the furthest thing from her mind,  but now it was facing her. Her deepest, darkest fear. Her father the monster.

"Darling, it was a long time ago...." Barnabas said stumbling.

"No.....no...this isn't happening. I don't want to see this side of you. I can't see this side of you. It'll take too much from me!" his daughter said releasing her hand from  his.

"It was a mistake, and at the time I didn't know what was happening, or that she would remain this way. You must believe me." Barnabas asked of his daughter.

"This monster you've become....I don't know him. I will never know him. I have to get out of here. I have to leave." Siobhan said grabbing her coat from the sofa.

"Siobhan please! Stop! Don't go, you don't understand! It was....it was different!" Barnabas yelled as his daughter escaped the room.

But all Barnabas heard was the door of the old house slam shut and the wind blow against the glass from the outside. An empty feeling. An empty sound.


****

The wolf was now loose in the Collinsport night scavenging the village for the man Anna named, the man she wanted dead and who's soul she needed to continue on her quest to release Laura, the Phoenix from inside of her.

Sebastian, in his wolf form, crept in the shadows of the village. He sniffed and smelled his way to the place he needed to be. And just as Loomis McGovern arrived home from a late night at the police department he could sense he wasn't alone.

Loomis carefully gathered his belongings from the front seat of his car, all the while feeling as if he was being watched. He kept his peripheral sight open knowing that somewhere in the margins of the darkness, some one or something was watching him.

He slowly walked up the small stoned path to his front door, one hand carrying his belongings, a small satchel with police files, and the other hand hovering over his gun strapped to his side.

The werewolf Sebastian sniffed and snorted from the shadows, and when he felt like he had his moment pounced on his prey tossing Loomis to one side of the yard, his forehead gushing a bright spring of blood.

Loomis scurried to his feet and pulled his gun from his side and nervously shot one bullet into the black night. He looked around for what had just attached him  but all he could do was hear the growling of something.

A dog? A coyote?

Then again, from behind a birch tree in Loomis' neighbors yard came two villainous yellow eyes. They were glowing and coming closer and closer. Loomis squinted and pointed his gun, the blood from his head wound starting to fall into the corners of his eyes.

Loomis looked straight ahead. his target growing then standing up on it's hind legs and howling a vicious, monstrous howl that terrified Loomis to his core.

And suddenly, as if he were flying the werewolf lunged at Loomis, jaws open ready to sink into his flesh.

Loomis closed his eyes and shot three more times, and in a split second the wolf was gone. Three bullets missing it's target.

Loomis stood in the Collinsport fog and listened. All he could hear was the waves from the sea just down the road from his home crashing up against the shore. Then far in the distance the howl came again.

The wolf had rushed off.

"What the hell was that." Loomis said to himself shivering with fear. He grabbed his cell phone to dial Kat, but it had been destroyed from his fall. Loomis, shaking in his stance, fell to the floor not knowing what in the world had just happened to him.



With Anna's targeted soul still living, the wolf knew his job was not done.

Five blocks from Loomis' house was a boat house where three fishermen were pulling into dock from the night. Sebastian the wolf slowly made his way down a small ramp nearing the fishermen and their boat. He slowly tipped toed into the shallow water that flushed up from the sea.

The fishermen didn't notice the large best below on shore staring them down, their work fogged their perceptions of their surroundings. Luck was in the werewolf's favor, he lunged up onto the boat surprising the three fishermen who screamed and scrambled about their small boat trying to escape.

The first swinging at the werewolf Sebastian with an ice-pic that they used to crack frozen water in the northern seas, the pic tore through the furry flesh of Sebastian's arm.

The wolf lunged at him and ripped out his throat killing him instantly.

The other two men were running together off the other side of the boat, but Sebastian's speed in animal form caught them both. One man was quickly beheaded and the other's chest was smashed.


Hours later, Sebastian walked back into his own apartment. His body ripped by the battles he had just been in. He was exhausted. Bloodied. Bruised.

He walked into the front room and found Anna laying on the floor of his apartment surrounded by a circle of candles. Her eyes were closed and her necklace lay on her chest. It began to glow in a bright yellow light as the souls of the fishermen flowed in.

Sebastian lay next to her, spooning her side, cuddling her neck.

"I can't kill anymore. Please. Make this stop." He said in a whisper.

Anna tenderly put her hand on his face, the candle light softening the battles scars of his night.

She knew his struggle, but Laura was stronger than both of them and she wanted out of Anna's body. She wanted her own freedom.

And now she had 4 souls. Only three left and Laura would be released to finally reconnect with her beloved David.



****

The energy of the violent night vibrated through the land. It was like a raging wild fire engulfing all that surround it. In her cottage just outside Collinsport, Ezrabette could feel it. She felt it in her blood. She felt it in her hands. She felt it all round.

The shadows were coming for their revenge. She sat at a table, the tarot cards spread around her. She could feel the death coming fast.

Then a knock at the door.

Ezrabette, the mystic voodoo priestess, and Maggie's closest confident slowly walked over to the door her black cat lay stoically on her sofa with glowing green eyes.

Ezrabette grabbed the door knob, and even though the late hour guest would worry most, Ezrabette knew who it was. She had been expecting him.

Thatcher.

"I've waiting for you." Ezrabette said leaving the door open for Thatcher to follow her in.

"Listen to me witch, I need to know where Maggie is and I need to know now damn it. I won't be kept from her any longer, do you understand me. I won't be kept from her!" Thatcher yelled.

Ezrabette sat back at her table, the energy still powerful and vibrating like a sound speaking pulsating thick bass.  She knew from her tarot cards that everything was meant to be. The events that would happen after she opened her mouth next were already set in stone and there was nothing she could to do stop it. All she could do now was be the vessel of the things to come. She had to allow them to happen as they were planned; the good, the bad, even the deadly.

"Maggie is at her home. Find her at the Evan's family cottage. She's alone.

Thatcher looked at her angrily. This whole time she was in the easily place to find her. Her own home.

He got up quickly and made his way back to his car and pulled out of the dirt drive way in the direction of Collinsport.

Ezrabette sat down on her sofa, her front door still ajar from Thatcher, the cold air wafting through chilling her mocha skin. She picked up her cat and petted her thick black fur.

"May you rest in peace." She said as she flicked a tarot card from her hand and on to the coffee table that showed a silver furred wolf howling at a lemon  yellow moon. 

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 7: HERE LIES THE TRUTH


The night grew late. The clock ticked away the final minutes before the sun began to rise and spread it's golden light on all that it touched. Carolyn sat in the comfort of her own room contemplating her discovery in the Old House: Barnabas, alive and well and his new wife with the familiar face, Jacqueleen.

Barnabas' explanation of  what happened in 1920, that Jamison trapped him again in his coffin and forced him to live out his life all over again, his escape to Singapore with Julia Hoffman in 1972 to successfully cure him of his curse, the birth of their daughter Siobhan and later Julia's death in 1986. He had lived a whole life time in Singapore and she had no idea.

It was all for a purpose. Barnabas' time traveling experiences taught him that overlapping time lines and entering a time frame before the right time could be catastrophic to the future. He had to wait until this very moment to see Carolyn again...but even so, it felt painful.

"Carolyn, can I come in?" Kat said from the open bedroom door.

"Of course, come in." Carolyn answered as she broke her deep thoughts of Barnabas' explanation.

"The coroner has removed Nick's body and Loomis is on his way. Do you have any idea what Nick was doing here? Why he would have come to Collinwood?" Kat asked.

"I have no idea. I was out in town and as I was coming up the drive way Powell and I saw him, So I don't know. I just don't know." Carolyn answered.

"Ok. We'll get to the bottom of this don't worry. How do you know Nick anyway?" Kat asked.

How could Carolyn answer? How could she tell Kat that Nick was actually Kat's own half brother, son of her mother Maggie and Nicholas Blair. Maggie had sworn Carolyn to secrecy, she couldn't tell her the whole truth even if she wanted to.

"We met him when you were in 1920. He was a little obsessed with Alexandra and there was some trouble." Carolyn said, using only half the story.

"Obsessed? Did you report him to the police?" Kat asked.

"No, he disappeared suddenly and we never saw him again until tonight." Carolyn answered in another half truth.

Kat nodded and was about to excuse herself when she realized she had her own half truth to tell.

"Oh! I forgot to mention, my father is back in town, he's been to Collinwood. I really don't have a good relationship with him, so if I'm at the police station at work, and he comes to see Canan or looking for Sebastian, please give me a call, I'll have a squad car come and take off the premises." Kat explained.

"Your  father?" Carolyn asked concerned, remembering again her conversation with Maggie. "He was here?"

"Yes. I'll warn the staff for you....Why don't you rest." Kat said as she left Carolyn in her room alone.

Once Kat closed her door, Carolyn dashed over her nightstand and picked up her phone and dialed the Evans' cottage.

"Maggie, it's Carolyn. I'm sorry for calling so early in the morning. But it's urgent." Carolyn said frantically. "A lot has happened....Nick was found dead on the lawn at Collinwood tonight, and Thatcher...he was here too, he came to see Kat....but I think he was looking for you. I don't think it was a coincidence Maggie, they must have been working together. What do we do?"

On the other side of the line, Maggie, who was standing at the phone, sat down in shock. Her mind began to race. He blood began to pump faster and faster as her heart pounded in terror in her chest. The second most terrifying man in her life had returned and her plot to kill him had to come faster than she realized.

"Nick? But how was Nick ....I don't understand. Are you sure Nick is dead?" Maggie asked.

"He's dead Maggie."

Maggie's eyes teared up a little bit. Even though Nick was the spawn of  dark forces, he still was part of her. But she knew his life was never meant for good...his death was a blessing to the world.

"We have to find out where Thatcher is Carolyn before its too late. We have to find him and kill him; he can destroy everything in my children's lives forever, and I won't let that happen." Maggie answered.

****
In the early morning down stairs, Kat and Loomis had returned to Collinwood to tell the family about the body found on the grounds. It was the second this had happened in two years under similar circumstances. The first being Victor Reed who was killed by his own son Christopher who was under his own werewolf curse. Loomis, of course, was not blind to the odd coincides of both deaths.

"Thank you both for coming back. We're absolutely shocked at what happened last night. Why do you think Nick was on the grounds?" David asked as they all sat or stood in the drawing room.

"We're not sure. He had a few things with him in a duffel bag but to know exactly what he was doing here is still unknown. He could have been back for Alex but again that's speculation." Loomis explained.

"Did anyone else other than Carolyn see anything?" Kat asked the group.

"Well I was with you, and we both heard nothing. Carolyn must of come home when it was all over." Caleb said answering Kat.

"Anna?" Kat asked of the new house guest.

"No, no. I didn't see or hear anything either. I went to bed early." Anna said lying through her teeth. Anna know exactly what happened. She is the one who transformed Sebastian into the beast the murdered Nick and left him on the grass for all to see while Nick's soul stay trapped inside the locket around Anna's neck, awaiting Laura's release.

"I have to say it's a very odd coincidence that two people died on your lawn in almost the exact same way in the span of two years. And again, no one heard a thing. Don't you all think it's a bit odd?" Loomis asked of the family.

"These walls are over 200 years old Detective McGovern. They're made of thick stone that traveled all the way from England. If we say we didn't hear a thing, we're telling you the truth. Your own partner was home at the time and she didn't hear anything either." David said standing up to Loomis.

"All I'm saying Mr. Collins, and I'm sure my partner would agree, is that something doesn't add up. Our job is to connect the dots make sense of what happened and find the killer...or killers." Loomis replied.

"There are a lot of wild animals out in the forest that surrounds the house, Loo, if Nick was trampling through some kind of bear's habitat he could have been followed up through the grounds." Kat added to her partner's retort.

"So you think it was a bear?" Loomis asked of his partner Kat.

"It could have been." David said answering for her.
"Listen, once the corner's report comes back we'll know exactly what killed him. There were contusions and abrasions to the body that suggest an animal attack, I saw it with my own eyes." Kat explained.

"We can always have a team of wild life experts go out into the woods and find out what exactly is out there." Caleb offered.

"No!" Anna shouted to everyone's surprise.

"Why not?" Loomis asked.

Anna blurted her response knowing that Sebastian was the culprit, and if anyone went looking for hi, her whole plan to steal 7 souls from the citizens of Collinsport to release Laura Collins from inside Anna's body could be thwarted. She now felt trapped by her own mistake.

"Because....." Anna said trying to cover her tracks. "I'm sure the forest doesn't belong to the Collins family. You can't just go out there and hunt down innocent animals can you?" she added.

"Innocent?" David asked before a sudden spike of pain in his head. 

"Dad? You ok?" Caleb said noting David reach for his left temple.

"Sorry, I've just been getting these awful headaches lately. Don't mind me. Anyway, whatever it was that killed Nick is hardly innocent." David added.

"We've got to get back to the station. As soon as we hear anything or have any more questions we'll let you know." Kat said as she and Loomis headed for the front door. 

Loomis had suspicions of the Collins family and the goings-on of the Collinwood estate all his life. Anyone and everyone in Collinsport did. It was a fact of life that the family that owned half the town and employed half it's citizens kept secrets up in the drafty mansion. But no one had every successfully connected any of the family members to the strange occurrences. 

Loomis and Kat stopped in the foyer to put on their jackets and as Anna excused herself to go check on Carolyn upstairs.

At the top of the staircase she hid herself around the corner of the hall way and listen in on the detectives conversation.

"A bear huh?" Loomis said jokingly.

"She could be right. We don't know." Kat said thrusting her left arm into her jacket.

"I don't know. Just doesn't make sense, you know? This one's going to be a doozey to explain to the D.A. Of course, anytime the Collins family is involved it's a doozey." Loomis said.

Anna didn't like what she was hearing and realized that Loomis was going to be an obstacle for her plan to release Laura, but perhaps there was a way to get him off the trail. She did need another soul after all.

She grabbed the locket around her neck and closed her eyes. In her mind she reached far back into the depths her psyche to the place where she connected with Sebastian. She held on tight to the locket and whispered to herself the name of her next victim, the next soul Sebastian would take for her.

"Loomis McGovern. Loomis McGovern. Loomis McGovern." 

****

Later that afternoon, Maggie Evans carefully her way over to Ezrabette Baptiste's cottage just outside of town. Ezrabette was the woman who raised Sebastian and Kat when Thatcher abandoned them when Maggie was placed at Windcliff in the mid 80's where she later faked her death. All those years past and Maggie and Ezrabette never lost touch. They had a secret connection throughout and Maggie had always kept tabs on her kids.

This visit however, was still in under a storm cloud of murder and Maggie would do anything to make sure her grown children and new grandson were kept safe from the mad man she once loved. It seemed to be Maggie's lot in life, constantly surrounded by men who were evil, twisted and only wanted to hurt her. All except for her beloved father, Sam.

"Where have you been girl, I've been waiting to hear from you for days, but you shouldn't be here. Thatcher could come at any moment. He knows where I live." Ezrabette said rushing Maggie into her home.

"I've come up with an idea. There won't be danger for much longer." Maggie said removing her jacket. in the warm house.

"I don't understand. What's changed?" Ezrabette said pouring Maggie some tea.

"Carolyn and I have devised a plan. We're going to make sure Thatcher stays way from the kids and me forever. I can't let them be hurt by him, you and I both know what he's capable of." Maggie asked.

"Margaret, think about what you're saying." Ezrabette said noticing how out of character it was for Maggie to plot someone's demise.

"He needs to be stopped before he does more damage." Maggie responded tears billowing down her rosy cheeks.

"Tell me what he did to you, once and for all...remove that weight from your heart. What could this man have done that has made you this terrified." Ezrabette asked tears too flowing from her soft brown eyes.

Maggie couldn't bare to tell Ezrabette the truth. She just sat there and shook her head.... It was too difficult. It was too painful.

"If you can't say it, show me." Ezrabette said as she leaned in and grabbed Maggie's hands. "Close your eyes and think back, think back to this time and remember how you felt, what you saw and where you were."

"I can't." Maggie said sobbing. "I can't go there."

"Release this hurt Maggie. Let it go." Ezrabette said caressing her hand.

Maggie closed her eyes, the tears puddling at her long eyelashes. She let her mind go blank, it was a like being in space, floating in a void. The flow of life swirling around her, yet she was stagnant while the memories filled her mind...Ezrabette saw her entrance and slowly closed her eyes too following the trail of sorrow and sadness that lead Maggie to this very moment in her life where she would feel that there was no way out but to murder another human being, no matter how despicable he was.

Suddenly Ezrabette opened her eyes and she was somewhere else. In a small apartment somewhere. The yellow light of the sun beamed through the window blinds casting stripped shadows on her face and the wall behind her. She could hear two children in a room just next to her, what were they doing? What were they saying?

Ezrabette slowly walked through the apartment that looked to be from a not so distant past, perhaps, 30 to 35 years ago. She walked through the small hallway and opened the door to the room. There she saw to little children, a boy and a girl hiding behind a toy chest.

The brother, clearly older, held his little sister down to make sure she did not get up. They were safe as long as they were behind the toy chest.

She walked over to them, they did not Ezrabette. Then she realized, the little boy and girl were Sebastian and Kat.

A loud thud came from another room.

Ezrabette turned and followed the noise. She turned a corner and came to another bedroom with it's door closed. She turned the nob and there was Thatcher standing over Maggie who was laying on a bed and had been hit across the face. She was crying. He was angry.

"You're crazy! Everything you've ever done....I don't know why I married your crazy...." Thatcher said before he was interrupted by little Sebastian who had run into the room.

"Leave mama alone!" The little boy screamed.

"Bash! Go back to your sister. Mama's ok." Maggie said lifting herself up from the bed.

"Leave mama alone!" Sebastian said again.

Thatcher lunged at the boy grabbing him and lifting him up by the shoulders screaming at him to mind his own business. Maggie jumped up from the bed, grabbed a side lamp and swung it at Thatcher who saw this in the reflection of a mirror on the wall and quickly turned using little Sebastian as a shield.

The lamp shattered on the little boy's back, Thatcher dropped the boy in shock.

"Look what you've done!" Thatcher screamed.

"NO! NO! Sebastian, mama's sorry. Mama's so sorry." Maggie screamed holding the little boy in her arms on the bedroom floor as the 5 year old sobbed in pain.

"You're insane. You're a piece of garbage." Thatcher screamed at his wife.

"I HATE YOU!" Maggie screamed back.

It was all too much for Ezrabette to handle she stood in that room from the past, sobbing right along with Maggie and little Sebastian and as the cries got louder and the police sirens began to ring closer Ezrabette jumped back to the present time with  her friend on the sofa in her own home.

Maggie and Ezrabette opened their eyes and looked at each other.

"So that's why he brought them to me." Ezrabette said.

"Thatcher had me committed. He said that I was a danger to my kids. Maybe I was...I don't know. But I couldn't let them continue to see what he was doing to me." Maggie explained.

"And you think killing him will fix it all?" Ezrabette asked.

Maggie got up and looked outside. The bright spring day was turning to a cool fresh evening. The remnants of sun light peeked through the tree-tops posting small pockets of light and shadows on Maggie's face.

"We don't know what he's capable of Bette. For my children, and especially for my grandchild, Thatcher needs to die. It's the only way." Maggie said as Ezrabette looked down at her tarot cards.

Ezrabette knew what was in store. She knew Thatcher would die, but the cards were only cryptic message from behind the veil of the dead. What Ezrabette wouldn't say is just how he was going to die. 

****

That night, in a small cafe that sat on the docks of Collinsport, a waiter carefully placed a fresh plate of crab cakes and a light salad on a table lit by a small candle inside painted red jar. The light reflected the color of the jar up on the faces of David Collins and his date Dr. Siobhan Morgan who was feeling a bit awkward in the moment.

"What's the matter? Would you rather have my crab cakes?" David asked noticing Siobhan's quiet behavior.

"What?" She answered clearly preoccupied with something.

"You've hardly said a word to me since we've started our first date, and I'm starting to get the feeling you'd rather be anywhere else but here, am I warm?" David said reading Siobhan's reactions.

"David I'm sorry. But, you're right, I do have my mind on something else." She answered honestly.

"If this is about being my doctor, that's done remember? I won't see you anymore. Besides, this is just dinner, you know, just crab cakes and a salad." David said in jest to relax her a bit.

"Actually, since I've come to town and since I've met you I've really felt that I needed to tell you something. It's actually very important, and I don't know how you'll take the news." Siobhan answered.

"Well, damn, talk about scaring a guy to the point of no apatite. What's going on?" David questioned.

"Well as you know I came to town with my elderly father who was bringing back my mother's remains so that she could be buried here with the rest of his family. What I didn't tell you is who my parents are." The Doctor explained and paused for David's reaction.

David sat at the table across from her in the cafe staring at her for what seemed like forever to Siobhan.

"Well, who are your parents?" David said expecting her to finish her story.

"David, when I tell you this, I just want you to stay calm." Siobhan replied.

"You're making me nervous." David said as the waiter came up to the table.

"More wine?" the waiter asked holding the bottle open.

"No, we're fine." David replied to the waiter.

"My mother was Julia Hoffman, and my father was your ancestor. Barnabas Collins." Siobhan explained.

"Waiter! Actually, yes, more wine!" David said yelling across to the waiter who had walked away.

As the waiter poured more red wine into his glass, David shook his head in disbelief.

"How can that even be? How can you even know who Barnabas was? This is insane. Barnabas left Collinsport, and ....now it's your turn to believe me when I tell you....went to another time. Literally another time. We haven't heard back from him since. This was months ago!" David answered.

"I know it's hard to understand, but the truth is, when Barnabas got trapped in 1920, he was forced to live his whole life from the point on again--virtually--living his life twice. In the early 70s, he and Julia took off to Singapore and were married. That's were I was born." Siobhan explained.

"So does that make us relatives?" David wondered.

"Very, very very distantly, yes. But the blood line is so detached because how long ago Barnabas was actually born, the connecting DNA between us is almost undetectable." She answered.

"This is a lot to take in. So Barnabas is back? He's here in Collinsport?" David asked.

"He is. My mother and Willie Loomis cured him when they first got to Singapore using a technique from a colleague of my mother's who lived there. He's actually aged in real time ever since." Siobhan said not knowing that Jacqueleen had changed Barnabas back to his vampire self just hours earlier.

"That's incredible. I guess I'd like to see him." David said softly. After all the years of terrible history between them, he and Carolyn had loved Barnabas like a second father. It was always very difficult for David to see what evil things Barnabas was capable of no matter how reluctant he was to do them.

"I'm sure he'd like that. I've always heard so much about you and Carolyn, and your family. It's good to finally connect this way." Siobhan said.

"So what about  us? Would it be weird for us to continue seeing each other?" David asked.

Siobhan grinned and stabbed her fork into one of David's crab cakes. Even though she and David were distantly related, she knew that their family connection was centuries disconnected. For her, the worst had past. She told him the truth of her identity and now it was safe to pursue a relationship.

"I take it that's a yes!" David laughed.

As the two love birds became more comfortable a strange scene was unfolding outside the small cafe. A woman was walking down the dock, slowly and methodically. The wind was blowing through her blond hair, her face was like a statue and she held on tight to her necklace.

It was Anna, wondering around the docks.

"What in the world?" David said as he saw her walking slowly past the cafe.


Anna continued to walk down the dock and past the cafe where David and Siobhan were eating. They watched her pass them almost as if she were in trans and as she passed their table in the window, her face and body changed in David's eyes, for a split second as Anna walked by she became Laura Collins and  instantly David doubled over with painful piercing headache that caused him to knock over his glass of wine on the white table cloth.

"David! David, Are you ok?" Siobhan screamed as she jumped up from her side of the table to help David.

"It's one of my headaches again. Something is not right, what is she doing here!" David said holding his temple.

"Who was that that passed just now? Do you know her?" Siobhan asked.

"My mother...it was my mother." David strained to speak through  his pain.

"Your mother? David that was a young lady. She couldn't have been more than 25 years old."

David looked up at Siobhan and realized she was right, he had seen Anna too but she changed just as the locked around her neck glowed a bright light and as she walked close their spot in the cafe.

"Is everything ok?" The waiter asked rushing over.

David leaped into action. He pulled out money from his wallet and threw it on the table then grabbed Siobhan's hand.

"Come on, we have to get back to Collinwood before she does." He said as they both dashed through the cafe door to get ahead of Anna's return home.

 David was now 100% sure was his reincarnated mother Laura.



Monday, April 10, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 6: FAMILY REUNIONS


Night fall in Collinsport. As the stars fill the sky that reflects a crashing sea just beyond the horizon a storm billows. Clouds fold into each other sparking thunder and lightening. A foreshadowing that only gets more and more macabre as the storm approaches.

Up at the great Collinwood Estate, Kat and her husband Caleb sit in the library relaxing after a long day of work. The fire place crackles and burns as the coming spring storm begins to surround the small fishing village as a pounding rain beats down on the windows from outside.

"It's really coming down out there." Caleb said as he sipped from his glass of after dinner red chardonnay.

"Lucky you made it home in time huh?" Kat said hugging him from behind.

"It's been great being back at the office. The fleet has had a great month. We've picked up numbers of albacore just off Newfoundland, hopefully that'll bring in some new business with corporate canning companies." Caleb said in his businessman voice.

Kat sighed and went back to the over stuffed library sofa, her bounce deflated it a bit, the leather stretched and squeezed at the seems as she landed.

"What is it?" Caleb asked noting her pouting.

"I don't know. Do you think I went back to work too soon after the baby?" Kat asked concerned.

"Too soon, Kat, it's been 8 months." Caleb shot back to Kat who grimaced. "How long do new mom's usually take?"  He added as a saving grace.

"Four, five months at best. I just feel like we're so busy lately you know? I don't want the chaos of our lives to take away from raising Canan. When my mother died and my father ran off, Bash and I felt like we weren't good enough. All we did was wish our parents were back ...they were always gone." Kat mentioned.

"Canan is not abandoned, Kat, we're here as much as we can, and Carolyn is doing a great job taking care of him. It's fine." Caleb said kissing her cheek.

"I just feel so guilty." She responded as a thunder clap lit the room.

"We are not our parents, Ok? Think about it, we've both had some really messed up things happen in our childhood. My mother cheated on my dad and then had him locked up in a mental hospital for 20 years; messing with his mind and D.N.A. But we're not like that." Caleb explained.

Kat looked at Caleb with a glare of disbelief. In the two years that they'd been back together since their original tryst in high school the most unbelievable things had happened to them. She had been attacked by a vampire and lost her memory, he almost died in a plane crash and was kidnapped and brain washed, not to mention her time traveling to the year 1920.

They were indeed living an extraordinary life. Kat's fears that Canan was being exposed to whatever supernatural vibes that flowed within the walls of Collinwood weren't based on fantasy. They were real.

"After everything that's happened, you're really going to look into my eyes and pretend that we haven't gone through some pretty strange things, much like the things that've happened to your family for decades here?" Kat joked.

"Ok, Ok, I guess there are those moments, but I really believe it's all over. Our boy is safe, Kat. No one is going to hurt him. We wont let it happen." Caleb said again kissing his wife on the lips.

In her mind she believed him. She believed that he believed himself too. They wanted to do everything they could to protect their son from whatever energy the Collins named carried for all his lifetime, whether is was good or bad. Most of all they wanted him to be safe.

Caleb sat back on the over stuffed sofa and began to read over files from the Cannery while Kat wrapped herself tighter in her sweater and walked over to the window. The rain was now streaming from the sky like a waterfall and poured down the windows like a river. As Kat looked on through the glass she could see the Old House at is sat in the gloomy distance lit periodically by a flash of lightening. The murky air filled with rain and wind swirled around loudly. The over grown trees and shrubs that surrounded the Old House too reached up to the sky like thousands of skeletal hands trying to pull themselves from a grave.

Kat got chills that went up her spine.

There was something in the air.


"Mr. and Mrs. Collins....you have  visitor." A voice came from the door of the library.

Kat  turned to the door of the library and Caleb lifted his head from his files, the family butler who was just about to end his shift announced the unexpected guest and he seemed uneasy.

"He's in the drawing room." The butler continued.

Kat composed herself and looked at her watch noting the strange late hour.

"At this time of the night?" Kat said as she and Caleb followed the butler downstairs.

In the drawing room, a man stood at the mouth of the fireplace warming himself on the chilly rainy night. As Kat and Caleb entered her turned, it was Kat's father, Maggie's ex-husband, Thatcher Banning.

"Daddy??" Kat said in utter shock, Caleb turning to Kat with a surprised expression on his his face.

"Hello Princess. Good to see you!" Thatcher said his arms open ready to receive a hug. "What a place you've gotten yourself into, huh?" He added looking around the marvelous mansion.

"What are you doing here?" Kat asked suspiciously.

"Well I heard my little girl had baby and got married, can't a man come and congratulate his favorite daughter? Hi, Thatcher Banning." Thatcher said extending his hand to Caleb in their first introduction.

"Pleased to meet you finally, Kat's ...uh...She's said a lot about you." Caleb said making small talk even though Kat rarely talked about her father.

"Well, that's nice to  hear. How have you been princess? I've missed you." Thatcher said stroking his daughter's face.

"Daddy, this is .....umm, this is a very big surprise. I haven't heard from you in a really long time. So forgive me, but what are you really doing here? How did you even know I lived here?" Kat said with an uncomfortable tone of voice.

Caleb knew that after Kat's parents divorce things were very strained. He knew that Kat's father left her and her brother Sebastian with a family friend when their mother died. He knew every sorted details of Kat's upbringing. They were, after all high school sweethearts. He could also tell that the conversation that was about to happen needed to happen in private.

"Why don't I let you two get better acquainted, I'll go up and check on the baby." Caleb said excusing himself.

"When do I get to meet my new grand baby?" Thatcher said with a crooked smile.

"Maybe some other time Daddy, I think we should talk first." Kat said now in a stern tone.

"You sound angry princess." Thatcher replied condescendingly. "I'm actually here to see you. And to find your brother. I haven't heard from him in a while. You wouldn't happen to know where he is, would you?" Thatcher added.

"As a matter of fact, I have. Bash came to see me the other day when he got back into down,. but let me just tell you that he and I have both been through a lot and if I were you I wouldn't just try and jump back into any sort of relationship. It won't work this time." Kat through back.

"I want to see my son. I want to see my daughter and her baby. Why do you always think the worst of me Kat? It's like everything I do you're suspicious of. It's not like I faked my death and ran off somewhere right?" Thatcher said referring to what Nick said of his ex Maggie.

"What?" Kat asked in a totally confused reaction.

"Where's your mother?" Thatcher growled.

"My mother? What are you talking about? She died years ago." Kat replied outraged.

"I know that's not true. I went to Windcliff and I asked around. She faked her death. She lied to us all. Have you seen her? Has she come to you? You tell me now girl!" Thatcher said grabbing Kat's arm.

"Daddy, get the hell out of here." Kat scolded forcibly removing her father's hand from her arm. "And leave us alone. You just can't help yourself, can you? You come here with some false story about looking for Sebastian or wanting to see me, but you're just as cold and vengeful as ever. Just go." She added.

Thatcher lifted an eye brow, he knew something was out of place. He knew, deep in his bones that Maggie was alive. He'd find her no matter what.

"I know she's in town. Just you watch.....your mother is alive, and she's lied to us all. Just as she always did. Just lied all the time, and one day you'll finally see that I was telling the truth. Just you wait. When you see your brother, tell him I want to see him." Thatcher said as he grabbed his coat from the sofa leaving Kat a ball of nerves in the drawing room with only the thunder and lightening as her company.


****

As the rain subsided and the misty fog crept over the main front lawn of the house on Widow's Hill, Anna sat in a screen off patio area out on the east wing of the mansion that looked over the great lawn.

On the patio, that the family called the screen room, Anna sat back on a beautiful French wicker chair clutching the locket around her neck that belonged to Laura Collins. Her hand began to heat up, and the gold necklace started to burn like a hot coal.

The energy inside of that locket began to infuse itself into Anna's skin and through her hand then up her arm and around her neck and into her eyes changing them to a fire red. She sat up and looked out onto the lawn and smiled a sinister and cold smile. She knew the time had come, the souls she needed to release Laura the Phoenix from inside of her were about to begin their journey from the mortal body and behind the veil of the living and the dead.

Anna closed her eyes and whispered something to herself over and over again. She clutched the locket around her neck and whispered again louder the name of the liken werewolf Sebastian.

"Change and morph, my liken friend, bite and scratch and bring the end of someone's life upon this earth. Bring me the first soul of seven I need to free myself of this body seed."

The message was heard loud and clear, and seemed to be carried by the fog into the air and around the trees and into Sebastian's ears across town. He was just getting home from visiting with his sister earlier in the day and stepping into his apartment. He was placing the key into his front door just as Anna's message from Laura's spirit broke into his psyche.

A shooting pain burst from his brain down to the edges of his toes. Sebastian dropped his keys and fell to the floor writhing in pain. As he screamed in agony, his body began to change into the wolf, the same wolf that Christopher created him months ago.

Sebastian's eyes turned to yellow like the sun, his nails long and sharp ready to slash at human skin. His body covered in the fur of a an inhuman thing born of an ungodly curse.

As his transformation began without a single ray of moon light, Sebastian snarled and huffed his first monstrous breath.

In the darkness of the night Sebastian bay out a bloodcurdling howl and dashed into the Collinsport fog leaving only a pile of destroyed clothes and bent apartment keys.

Sebastian was in search of blood.

****

Thatcher made his way out of Collinwood and down the long front lawn to the locked front gate. Just outside was a car with Nick Blair waiting for his new partner in crime to come back.

Seeing an opportunity to seek revenge on his mother Maggie, Nick Blair pared up with Thatcher to find her and end the her lies forever. Maggie had faked her death years ago at Windcliff Sanitarium where Thathcer last saw her and now that the jig was up, the two men who felt betrayed by her would stop at nothing until they had what they wanted. Their one big clue of her whereabouts was where Nick last saw her, when she banished him back to the shadows to his father Nicholas Blair Sr...the Collins family mansion: Collinwood.  

"How'd the family reunion go?" Nick said with a wicked smile.

"Shut up....I have a feeling we're really going to find something tonight. She's hiding something." Thatcher answered.

Walking up the front lawn of the main mansion Maggie Evans' long time escape from the horrors that haunted might finally catch up to her, and she had no idea.

"How did you know Maggie was here?" Thatcher said in the dark Collinsport night as he and Nick walked up the grounds of the mansion.

"This is the last place I saw her, this is where she'll be." Maggie's son by surrogate with the evil Nicholas Blair said of his mother.

"What's your deal? Why are you helping me find her?" Thatcher asked of his partner in crime as they filled a duffel back with duct tape and rope.

"She left my father years ago...it's like she doesn't want me to exist. All I wanted was to be close to my mother in some way shape or form, but she .....she sent be away. At least she thought she did." Nick said referring to Maggie vanquishing Nick back to the shadows where his father belonged.

"Mother, what are you talking about? You're her kid? She never told me she had an older kid." Thatcher said stopping in the middle of the foggy lawn.

"She never knew, but when she found out she came out of hiding...she hates me." Nick said, the darkness in his eye sending a shiver up Thatcher's spine.

Thatcher, who was even more confused than ever, shook his head and picked up the duffel bag.

"I do all the talking, whatever happens, don't touch her until I say so. We're going to tie her up then put the tape over her mouth. Do you understand?" Thatcher said hatching the plan.

"I want to strangle her." Nick said in an another chilling tone of voice.

"Hey, you listen to me, I don't know what the hell you're talking about and I don't know your real deal with Maggie, but she's the mother of my children, alright, We're not going to hurt her, we're just going to take her away from here. I want her unharmed." Thatcher said stopping Nick in his tracks.

"That's not the deal. We both want her, so we both get a crack at her. You have no idea what she did to me." Nick said as if he was foaming at the mouth.

"Now you listen to me, you nutcase, maybe I should be doing this all alone. You should go back to that hospital, maybe that's where you belong." Thatcher said.

"No. We're going to get her back, together. You promised!" Nick yelled.

Thatcher began to see the cracks in Nick's veneer. He was still unsure of Nick's accusations that Maggie was his mother, but he could see that the he was one sandwich short of a picnic and it worried him.

Thatcher began to rethink the whole situation. And as they stood there on the lawn arguing in the lights of the house in front of them, something else was watching them just beyond the fog and mist.

The watchful creature paced itself behind the two men, stalking them with its yellow eyes. It was Sebastian in wolf form ready for his first taste of blood and ready to release a soul for Anna's locket, the first of seven she needed to release Laura Collins spirit.

"What was that?" Thatcher said hearing movement behind him.

"The wind." Nick said picking up his own tools for the kidnapping.

"It sounded like something was coming up behind us." Thatcher said looking back.

"Shut the hell up! We have to take care of this right now before it's too late." Nick said.

"Look...over there....are those eyes?" Thatcher said noticing the two yellow balls.

"It's just a cat or something. Come on." Nick said continuing his way up the lawn.

And just as Thatcher turned around to follow Nick up the lawn in the dark, Sebastian jumped up from the fog and landed in front of Thatcher in a snarling, foaming heap.

"Jesus!!!" Thatcher said falling to the wet ground.

Sebastian, in wolf form, stepped closer and closer to Thatcher. His breath puffing out from his nostrils like two chimneys in the winter pushing out white smoke with every breath.

"Get back! Get back!" Thatcher said, not knowing it was his own son in front of him transformer under the Phoenix's spell.

Nick turned back and run down the grassy slope and as the fog cleared her saw the beast in front of Thatcher. The wolf turned and looked at Nick and snarled a wet and horrible snarl showing his teeth in a hungry crooked smile.

Nick reached into his back looking for something to keep the monster back, but has his gaze went down to the bag the wolf jumped on his crushing his chest.

Nick screamed in agony as the wolf began to slash and tear at Nick's flesh. Thatcher got up quickly and began to push the animal in his side trying to anything and everything to get him off of Nick.

"Get him off!!!" Nick said in a gurgle.

Thatcher kept punching, but the animal's strength was beyond anything he had ever seen. It was as if the wolf didn't feel a single punch.

As he continued to rip into Nick, and the blood spilled over the green grass and seeped into the Collinwood soil, a giant paw swung and smacked Thatcher to the ground blasting him 10 feet into the air. Thatcher fell to the ground and watch the wolf continue to tear into Nick. Thatcher scrambled to his feet and ran off into the foggy and shadowy distance of the Collinwood ground.

The werewolf Sebastian turned his yellow eyes to met Nick's, those emptying brown eyes that seemed to resemble Maggie's own. Sebastian recognized those eyes, for they both shared her as a mother. The life was draining from Nick once more bit by bit. This was a more painful and gorier death than the vanquishing by Maggie. The power of the monster was overwhelming Nick's body and slowly his heart began to stop.

The wolf gained his first victim, allowing Nick's soul to flow from the body and into Laura's glowing locket that hung around Anna's neck. Anna looked out of the screen room window and smiled, her eyes still flickering a golden flash of light from deep inside her body. Laura's life force gained once of the seven souls it needed to be free from Anna's body. The phoenix was on her way.

****

Carolyn's car was pulling up the long winding road the lead up to the Collinwood estate driven by, Powell, her faithful driver and butler. It was dark, and the road was shaded by the thick forest on Widow's Hill that surrounded the Collins' compound.

Carolyn sat in the backseat of the black sedan contemplating her conversation with Maggie earlier that day at the Evans' family cottage. Could she really help Maggie take another man's life even if it meant keeping Kat, Maggie and Sebastian safe from an abusive cruel person like Thatcher?

She knew she had a lot to think over then suddenly, Powell violently slammed on the breaks in the middle of the road half way to Collinwood, the careened off to the side of the road tossing Carolyn to the other side of the  backseat.

"Powell!!!" Carolyn screamed.

"I'm sorry Mrs. Thorne, this man, he popped out of no where." Powell said looking back at Carolyn.

"Man? What are you talking about?" Carolyn asked as she adjusted herself in the seat and looked out through the windshield.

Standing there, square in the headlights, was a heavy breathing, sweaty, bleeding Thatcher Banning who had been running down the hill towards the main road away from Collinwood. Carolyn gasped.

"Don't get out of the car." Powell whispered as he locked the doors. "Do you know this man?" he added.

"No." Carolyn whispered not knowing the man she was contemplating murdering was standing in front of her.

Thatcher looked terrified, his breathing was hard and fast. He was holding his wrist in pain. Squinting, he looked into the lights of the car, but could not tell who was inside. Then a glimmer of consciousness came back and he realized he had been seen, and dashed off into the woods to find the car he and Nick came in.

"My god, what was he doing here?" Carolyn said as Powell continued on their drive up the road to Collinwood.

"Maybe he was lost." Powell offered.

Carolyn's concern grew deeper and deeper as they slowly drove up the main lawn closer to the half circle drive way that placed the car at Collinwood's front door.

But as they drove, Carolyn noticed a shadowy figure strewn out on the lawn. It was human like, she could see a head, shoulders.

"Powell, what is that? Just over there?" Carolyn asked.

Powell stopped the car and Carolyn moved over to the left side of the backseat and slowly rolled down her tinted glass window.

"Can you tell what it is?" Powell asked.

Carolyn took a break and reached for the lock on her door and flipped it, she pulled the door handle and slowly stepped out of the car.

"Mrs. Thorne, please don't go out there....Mrs. Thorne, wait!" Powell said, scrambling to turn off the car and go after his boss.


In the dark of the night, in the fog and sea mist, Carolyn slowly walked across the wet lawn and came closer and closer to the shadowy figure laid out in a heap. It soon became clear that it was a body on the grass as she came closer. Her eyes were wide, a shiver ran up her spine. The body was face down.

"Don't touch him. I should call Miss Kat. She'll know what to do." Powell said in a worried tone of voice.

"Shhh." Carolyn answered as she knelt down and pulled the body over revealing the bloody, scared, and torn up body of Maggie's son Nicholas Blair Jr. Carolyn screamed and fell back on her behind on the lawn, Powell quickly gathered her up.

"It can't be. How can he be here? How could he have come back?" Carolyn screamed into Powell's chest.

"Who is he?" Powell questioned as she hid her face from the body.

"It's Nicholas. It's Maggie's son."

"What happened to him? How could this have happened here on the lawn?" Powell asked looking around to find some sort of evidence of what had occurred.

Carolyn had seen this type of brutality before. She thought of only one person that could have caused such carnage. She lifted her eyes from Powell's chest and looked over through the mist in the air towards the Old House. The sense of dread and terror in her body quickly dissipated and turned into anger.

"Barnabas." She said in a hushed voice.

Carolyn tightened her jacket's grasp around her body and stormed off through the yard to the Old House and without even facing back to Powell, Carolyn had one more thing for him to do:

"Powell, go inside and get Kat to her partner Detective Loomis McGovern over here. It seems we've had another animal attack." She said, I'll be at the Old House."

Carolyn was sure that the only person who could have ravaged Nick's body like that was Barnabas. But she was wrong, and had possibly forgotten the terrors a werewolf could inflect on a body. But Barnabas was always her go-to when these things happened, and being that she hadn't seen him since he traveled back to 1920, she was sure, he had returned and was thirsty.

Outside the Old House, Carolyn noticed a strange car in the driveway, It was Xander's car.

She marched into the old house. The front rooms were empty. She quickly searched for Barnabas.

"Where are you, you monster. Where are you!" She said out loud.

Down in the basement, Xander, Barnabas, and Jacqueleen could hear her rummaging in search of her cousin from another century.

"We have our first guest." Jacqueleen said with an evil grin.

"Stay where you are. Carolyn has no idea I've returned, it's a sensitive situation." Barnabas said fixing the jacket of his suit.

"I'm your wife, how would it look to your family if you just kept me hidden down here in the basement in this coffin. You don't want to come off cruel, now do you husband?" Jacqueleen joked.

"You are not my wife! Carolyn and the rest of the family ..." Barnabas began before he was interrupted by Carolyn coming down the steps of the basement.

Jacqueleen smiled wickedly and adjusted the curls in her hair in anticipation for meeting Carolyn, the candles burning all around reflected a yellow and orange glow that lit the room melodramatically.

"It is you." Carolyn said at the foot of the stairs.

"Cousin," Barnabas said with a nervous smile. "It's so good to see you again." he added with his arms opened.

Carolyn stepped off the last step and walked over to Barnabas at a quick pace and slapped him across the face.

"MONSTER!" She screamed at him disregarding the other two people in the room with him.

"Carolyn!" He said holding the side of his face.

"How could I think that going back to do your 'good deed' to get the baby back would change you? You'll never change. A monster is a monster is a monster!" Carolyn said with tears in her eyes.

"What do you mean? What's happened?" Barnabas questioned in confusion.

In the past, Barnabas would quickly admit his shortcomings, especially to Carolyn, his favorite of the family. Carolyn could sense that something wasn't what it seemed. Something was indeed with this softened Barnabas.

"You really don't know, do you? A body was found on the lawn just now. It was ....it was disfigured, bloody. I thought..." Carolyn said before Barnabas interrupted.

"You thought it was me. I understand. My history certainly would lead anyone to believe that. Come, let's go upstairs, I have many things to explain." Barnabas said grabbing Carolyn's hand.

"Ahem....." Jacqueleen said, clearing her throat.

Barnabas turned and snickered at Jacqueleen.

"Barnabas who is this?" Carolyn said finally noticing the other woman in the room.

Jacqueleen's connection to Barnabas went well beyond the physical, she focused deep in her psychie and telepatically sent Barnabas a message only he would hear.

"You will introduce me as your wife, Barnabas Collins, or I will  make whatever years you have left a living hell. Trust me, there are things I will do to you that no one has ever done. You took my life, you took what I was and made me this. You. Owe. Me." Jacqueleen's telepathic message said.

Barnabas' guilt bubbled up in his heart. All the sins he had committed floated around his mind again and again over and over to the point a tear welled up in his eye.

"Carolyn............"Barnabas said before a long pause. "This is my ....wwwwif....wife. Jacqueleen Welsh-Collins." he finished with a large gulp.

"Pleasure to meet you Carolyn." Jacqueleen answered.

Carolyn stepped close to shake her new family member's hand and something seemed off, the woman standing before her, Carolyn had seen her before. Her face was familiar. Her eyes were familiar.

Carolyn had no idea she was looking directly at the reincarnation of her own great-grandmother, now a Vampire, the bride of the undead.

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 5: FROM THE ASHES

It quiet mid-morning day, the business of a hospital crowded the mind of newly arrived chief of staff at Windcliff Sanitarium Dr. Siobhan Morgan who arrived the night before from Singapore. Her schedule was a busy one, she had already met with many of the hospital's staffers, even some who worked with her mother, Julia Hoffman, years ago at this same hospital. But one visitor in-particular struck her interest on a whole different level.

David Collins had made an appointment to see the newest attending doctor because of headaches he was having. His mind would often run off to dark places when those headaches arose, similarly to when he was a patient at Windcliff under the cruel care of Siobhan's predecessor Dr. Joanna Grayson.

"Doctor, Mr. Collins is here." A nurse said opening the door to Siobhan's office.

"Oh thank you, send him in." the doctor responded.  "Mr. Collins! Thank you for coming in on my first day. I know it's been probably hectic getting in to see someone." She said as David made his way into the office.

"I'm just glad some one is here that isn't Joanna Grayson." David said with a sharp tone in his voice and shaking Siobhan's extended hand.

"What is it that I can help you with? I read over your file and frankly there are a lot of things I have questions about." Siobhan asked.

"Mainly my headaches, I haven't really told anyone, but they've recently become more and more frequent. I'd say, maybe in the last two weeks or so." David explained.

"Oh? Has anything changed in your life? At home? Added stresses? It says in your file that you were placed at this hospital due to a nervous break down after a divorce." She said.

"Well, I wouldn't go with what's in my file as fact. I mean, I did have a divorce but I didn't have a break down. It's a long story involving my ex wife and Dr. Joanna Grayson who happen to be sisters." David explained.

"Sisters?" Siobhan asked in surprise.

"Like I said, it's a long story, and you wouldn't believe me even if I told you every strange and sorted detail." David grinned as his mind quickly raced through his kidnapping at his ex-wife Kimberly's request and false circumstances he was locked away under while at Windcliff.

"So, aside from that," Siobhan said with a laugh, "what other stress related things could be bringing on these headaches?"

"I don't know. Nothing really. We have a new baby in the house, and a new house guest. But I can't say she's really any added stress." David said confused.

"And this house guest, have you had much contact with her? Do you feel any anxiety about her?" The doctor asked.

"Well she's been ill. She's had a fever when she arrived and just the other day she passed out in the baby's nursery." David explained.

"Hmm..." Dr. Morgan thought. "Sometimes headaches can be caused but added or new stresses to our lives especially if there's something out of the ordinary happening and we're not ready to deal with it. Also if something is familiar but suddenly changes to something unfamiliar we can unknowingly stress and become ill. The change in your environment, the people you're around could be the cause of your headaches." She added.

"I live in a large house there are people coming and going all the time. I don't see how one person can cause such an upset." David said noting in his mind just how pretty his doctor was.

"Like I said Mr. Collins..." Siobhan started before David interrupted her.

"David, you can call me David."

"Right, David," She said noticing him flirt a little, "Like I said, a lot of times this is all unconscious, and you don't really know your mind or body is stressed. Tell me, have you ever had these headaches before?"

"No, not to my.........actually yes. I did. But years and years ago. When my parents were having some issues of their own. My mother, for a while, when I was a child would come in and out of my life. The times she would come back, I would get headaches like this." David said realizing.

"She would come and upset your normal environment, causing you to have some anxiety." Dr. Siobhan Morgan reiterated.

"I guess so, that could be it." David noted. "But like I said, we have people coming in and out of Collinwood all the time, I only got these headaches when my mother would cause problems."

"Well, either way, I can prescribe you some medication that might help, and maybe keeping you from work a few days will relax you. Can you take a few days off from the Fishing business?" Siobhan asked she wrote out a prescription for David.

"How did you know I worked in the fishing business?" David said smiling as he took Siobhan's slip.

"Mr. Collins, I have more connections in town than you realize. Besides, the town is named after your family, I would have guessed anyway." Siobhan smiled back.

"Thank you for this." David said as he got up to leave but then turned around to look back at the doctor who had sat back in her chair. The bright mid-day sun shining in her hair dark hair, her blue eyes twinkling like little diamonds.  "You know, if you'r not too busy, maybe we can have dinner some time. Outside of this....whole place." David added looking around the office.

"You're asking your doctor on a date Mr. Collins? I don't know if that's very ethical." Siobhan said blushing.

David, who was handsome, rugged and tall fired back a half smile that gave Siobhan tingles.

"Well, then you're fired. Here." David said ripping off a corner of his superscription and handing it to Siobhan. "Write down your phone number." He added.

Siobhan hesitated for a second even after she grabbed her pen to write.

"Go on, you're not my doctor anymore. I'll find someone else." He said

Siobhan smiled and wrote down  her number and gave it to David. He folded it and put it in his pocked then said good bye. She sat back in her chair smiling and feeling freer than she had ever felt in her life in that very moment.

She was in a new town, a new place, and a new life was about to start for her. This was her time to shine.

****

At the mansion Sebastian was coming down the stairs after visiting with his sister and her infant son Canan. He walked briskly past the front entrance to the drawing room and swiftly grabbed his coat off the top of a side table in the foyer.

"Sebastian." a woman's voice called from the drawing room.

Not recognizing the voice, Sebastian furrowed his brow and curiously walked into the drawing room where Anna was standing. He was struck by her beauty. Her skin perfect and seemed to glow, her eyes sparkled a bright sea blue, her hair pulled back. And she still clutched the locket that dangled around her neck.

"I'm sorry have we met?" Sebastian asked as she carefully walked into the drawing room.

"No, I'm sorry, I heard David and Caleb talking to you earlier, my name is Anna. I'm Carolyn's goddaughter." She smiled, extending her hand.

"Pleasure, I'm Kat's brother." He said introducing himself.

"What brings you by?" She asked, even though she had eavesdropped earlier and knew the answer.

"Just visiting the baby, it's the first time I've met him. He's adorable." Sebastian said noticing Anna take slowly steps towards him.

"I'm sorry, I just have to say, there's something about you that is familiar. I get this sense about you. What is it? What is it about you Sebastian?" Anna said clutching her locket tightly in her fist.

"I don't know. Maybe we have met some place. Can you remember if that's it? I lived in Bangor for a long time. Did you ever live there?" He answered, as Anna got only a foot away.

"No. Never been to Bangor. You know I'm very keen on these things. It's sort of a sixth sense. We're a lot alike. We both have something we're hiding, isn't that right? You have a secret. I could tell the moment I saw you." Anna said to a confused Sebastian.

"I don't have any secrets." Sebastian assured her.

"No, you do. I can feel it. Something right here." Anna said as she reached and touched his chest.

Sebastian stepped back, Anna's arm still extended towards Sebastian's chest. What did she know? How could she know? But Anna was right. They were very much a like and both harbored secrets. Sebastian's was the fact that he survived an attack by a werewolf thus creating him one as well, the scars on his chest the lasting evidence of his creation. But how could Anna know that?

"Who are you?" Sebastian said seeing that Anna was more than she lead on.

Anna smiled and turned herself away from Sebastian to pour herself a glass of water from the bar and as the water poured from the pitcher into the glass in her other hand it began to boil right in front of Sebastian, who's face froze in shock.

"What the hell..." he said as he came in for a closer look. "What are you?" he continued as the water in her glass boiled without burning her hand.

"I am the past and the present, and am the always and the forever. My name is Laura Murdoch Collins, trapped in this new body and only you can release me." Anna said her eyes know flickering like two fourth of July sparklers.

Sebastian turned to walk away but Anna lifted her free hand and made a fist locking Sebastian in place. She turned her wrist that simultaneously turned Sebastian's body around back to face her.

"What do you want from me? I have nothing to give you!" He said in a shaky voice.

"You'll give me my freedom." She hissed as she walked closer. "You're the one that has the thirst for flesh. I need you to bring me the souls of those you will kill. I need seven, seven souls to release me from this body, only you can do this Sebastian. Only you, with the blood of a liken rushing through your veins can do this." Anna explained as she lifted up the locket that was now glowing a deep green.

Anna pulled her locket from her neck and began to swing it back and fourth, like the pendulum from a grandfather clock, the green glow swirled deep into Sebastian's eyes like the mist of the sea rising around the black stones at the bottom of Widow's Hill. The locket swung back and fourth and back and fourth and Sebastian fell deeper into Anna's fire spell.

Then, as the spell locked on his mind, the locket instantly stopped and stood straight down.

"You will bring me the souls of seven, thus releasing me from Anna's body so that I may take my place back on this earth, the rightful way. A mother to my son David. You will do this." Anna said with Laura Collins soul locked in her body as it had been since her reincarnation.

"I will." Sebastian said in a sleepy voice.

"Good evening!" Carolyn said as she stepped off the steps of the main staircase as she came towards the drawing room.

Anna quickly snapped her fingers releasing Sebastian from his trans, but the curse was put in place.

"Sebastian, what a surprise. I wasn't aware you were back in town." Carolyn said smiling strangely as she too hid a secret, the secret the Sebastian's mother Maggie was alive and well.

"Uhhh yeah, I just got back, this week." he replied with a strange feeling in his head.

"And you've met my lovely goddaughter, I see." Carolyn said putting her arms around Anna. "How are you feeling honey?" Carolyn asked.

"Better, thank you Aunt Carolyn. Sebastian and I were just getting more acquainted." Anna replied now in  her normal voice.

"I should be off. Anna, it was a pleasure." Sebastian answered still feeling foggy and confused but not remembering he was put under a spell.

"I'll see you soon." Anna replied.

Sebastian smiled awkwardly and dashed off leaving Carolyn and Anna alone in the drawing room.

"What was that about? You'll 'see him soon'"? Carolyn said teasing Anna.

"Nothing, nothing, we were just getting to know each other but, I have a feeling he'll be around a lot more." Anna winked as she replaced Laura's locket of the phoenix around her neck.

****

The day pressed on and and a fresh spring breeze engulfed the upper hills if Collinsport and the Collinwood estate. A small black sedan with pitch black windows slowly pulled around the back drive way of the estate that encircled the old house and as it packed, a tall handsome man named Xander who had just been employed by his passenger got out of the car and stepped out of the drivers seat and walked over to open the back door. 

The back door of the sedan with the blacked out windows opened, slowly the 93 year old body of Barnabas Collins slowly crept out. Free from his curse now over 40 years thanks to his late wife Julia Hoffman and Dr. Lo of Singapore.

He had returned to Collinsport with his daughter with Julia, Siobhan, could start her work at Windcliff Sanitarium and also to return Julia's remains to the Collins family crypt at Eagle Hill Cemetary. But there was one stop he had to make after Julia's re-interment. He had to see The Old House once more.

"Would you like me to take you up to the front door Sir?" Barnabas' driver, Xander asked. 

"No, I'll be fine, thank you. I wont be long either. I just need to take a look one more time." Barnabas said as he slowly went up the main front staircase. 

Barnabas' time travels in 2016 had taken him to 1920 where Jamison Collins had replaced him in his coffin thus forcing Barnabas to repeat his timeline from 1920 to the present time, and although  it had been over 40 years since he had literally seen the inside of his beloved Old house, it felt like it had only been yesterday.

The interior of the house had been kept as he had changed it back in 2016. It was freshly painted. The walls a clean peach color. The drapes still in their immaculate state of ruby red with small golden tassels that hung from the corners. 

Barnabas walked into the front foyer, it even smelled the same. The large statute on the banister of the staricase was still sparkled as if it were brand new, and in the drawing room a large painting of himself in his younger, vampire self.

Oddly...the past was a live and well in the old house, more than Barnabas even knew.

He continued on his way through memory lane in the Old house and went into Josette's room, then another bedroom.  Barnabas had been pleased with how the house was being kept up, Carolyn must have kept everything this way expecting Barnabas to return from 1920, even though he was trapped there until the time lines re-connect in this very moment.

As Barnabas concluded his final walk though the house, he knew it was possibly the last time he would see it. He was 93 after all and had lived a very long life. His actual age more than 300 years old and he had seen at least 5 different variation of the Old house within those years that were filled with turmoil, tragedy and time traveling. His long lustrous and legendary life could end at any moment from his mortal old age.

There was one place he needed to see.

The basement, where his long time place of solidute had been. Where his coffin lay. Where he found peace during the day light hours to hide from the burning sun and the clarity of a clear sky. Once a creature of the dark, Barnabas could now see his lair in the day light.

He carefully and slowly made his way to the entrance of the basement and put his gloved hand on the door knob and twisted. The smell of the old wood and candles rushed to his face, it was a welcome scent that he had missed. He closed his eyes and took it all in than made his slow decent down into the basement, the glow of light from the floor above guiding him down step by step to find his old coffin and say goodbye.

The basement that he had used in the Old House for years to conceal his secret life was one that held bitter sweet memories. It was where Jason McGuire was murdered. It was the place where he held Maggie Winters prisoner. It was also the place where he found solace, and as he turned the corner from the bottom of the stairs he reached over to a table that had a candle and matches. He lit the candle and illuminated the main chamber of the basement and in the center was his black lacquered coffin. 

Barnabas walked over to it and ran his fingers over its smooth surface and over the grooves around the jagged corners. He smiled a strange sad and happy smile but knew it was time to say one last goodbye before he went back up stairs and left the Collinwood land forever. 

93 year old Barnabas placed his silver wolf headed cane down over a chair and placed both hands firmly on the top of the coffin and slowly lifted the coffin open releasing dust and air around his face. He turned away quickly to block his eyes from what was coming up, and suddenly a hand from inside the coffin reached out and grabbed Barnabas by the throat knocking and the candle to the floor extinguishing it's light. 

Barnabas struggled on the floor his eyes had not yet adjusted to the new darkness of the basement in the Old House. The person who was in the coffin was hissing and squeezing their hand so tight that their finger nails were digging into Barnabas' skin. Barnabas coughed, and choked and could not breath but then, the person began to recognize who this old man really was and released their grip around Barnabas' throat. 

"My god what time has done to you." The woman's voice said. 

Barnabas opened his eyes but the woman from the coffin was in silhouette and he could not see her face.

"Who are you? What are you doing here?" He asked as he struggled to find the candle. 

"Have you already forgotten my voice? Well, I can imagine why, our time together was so short." The woman said, as she reached for the fallen candle then flicked her fingers magically lighting it. 

The light slowly started to glow closer and closer to her face and Barnabas could finally see who it really was. It was the woman he killed in 1920, Jacqueleen Welsh. Catherine Collins mother. 

She had attempted to seduce Barnabas so that he'd make love to her. Unknowingly seducing a vampire Jacqueleen paid the ultimate price of a vampire bite.

"No. It can't be!" Barnabas said struggling to get up from the ground.

"Oh but it is, dear Barnabas. Aren't you pleased to see your creation?" Jacqueleen said as she paced the floor of the basement. 

"How? How can you be alive?" Barnabas asked dusting his pants off.

"Funny thing, when you don't die from the bite, you life for a long time in a cold shallow grave in the forest. I never died you fool. You know all about that, don't you? You've lived for centuries, haven't you? And now you've cursed me to be the same as you." Jacqueleen said.

"Oh, Jacqueleen I...I'm sorry. I never believed that this would have happened to you. I thought..... I believed...." Barnabas said horrified of what occurred in 1920 before being interrupted by Jacqueleen. 

"You thought you killed me. You thought by just one bite it was curtains for me, but you'd be wrong. I lived, even survived that pathetic burial by you and Miss Winters. I came back here, digging myself free, to find you. But when I got here I didn't, so I've been waiting ever since." Jacqueleen explained.

"I've been cured Jacqueleen, I can help you become cured as well. I can help you get this changed. Look at me, you too can be free of this ailment and get break this curse. Please come with me later tonight to my daughter, she can help you." Barnabas said reaching for Jacqueleen's hands.

"Are you mad? Do you think I want to be cured? You're a fool Barnabas Collins! I don't know why you want to be free of all this. Immortal life.... this  is forever. Even though I'd rather have chosen to become this myself I can't say that I'm unhappy. It's all become so .....so perfect." Jacqueleen said hauntingly. 

"You can't mean that. There is no way this life is anything but cruel. You haven't yet had your first thirst have you. That must be it. The first thirst, the first kill, that's when you'll see what this is all about. The first time you have to take someones life so that you'r addiction can and own life force can be restored, that's when you'll know what this really is." Barnabas replied cynically. 

"That's what you'd like me to believe isn't it. But I don't. You may have decided that this was no longer what you want, but I know you miss it." Jacqueleen said stepping closer to Barnabas.

"Miss what? The loneliness? The living in the shadows? Never. I've lived all these years, since 1972 a free man from this curse and I have enjoyed every single moment." He replied definitely. 

"Look at yourself! Look at what you've aged to? You're shriveled and withered like a tree on it's last days, ripped of this ripe fruit and green leaves. Just stems. You're just stems of a human now!" Jacqueleen explained.

"But I'm human!" Barnabas equally exclaimed.

This infuriated Jacqueleen who's eyes turned red, she hissed a cruel sound, and jumped up into the air spreading her arms as if they were wings. While suspended in air, her fury became more evident as Barnabas stood his ground. She floated over to him, her fangs now prominent and showing, ready for her first taste of blood.

"Looks like you may become my very first taste, dear Barnabas, how would you like that?" Jacqueleen said through salivating mouth.

"Whatever you do, trust me, you will regret it." Barnabas said standing confidently in her way. 

Jacqueleen's anger began to boil over as she could see she could not shake Barnabas Collins, and from the left side of him, her hand slapping him across the face. The pain of her hand that felt like a weight crossing his cheek in a powerful swing to his face to one side, but Barnabas remained unfazed.

Jacqueleen then jumped on his body from the air, pulling him down to the ground. Her mouth open and ready to bite down on Barnabas' old neck. He was old but strong, but Jacqueleen was stronger. They struggled on the ground, rolling around over and over each other. Barnabas trying to keep her mouth away from his neck.

She finally stuck her fingers between his ribs and twisting causing Barnabas to scream in agony. And while he screamed a clearing for Jacqueleen to plant her fangs deep into Barnabas neck releasing a powerful red flow of his blood. 

But the blood in his veins had been the synthetic creation that Dr. Lo and Julia Hoffman had transplanted into Barnabas' veins in 1972 in Singapore. To Jacqueleen's taste buds it was like drinking gasoline. 

She chocked and released her grasp of Barnabas' throat and rolled off of him and coughed out the synthetic blood she had consumed.

"What have you done to yourself? What have you allowed them to do? You were a beautiful creature that had so much power...and now look at you. Just that withered tree with poison in your veins." Jacqueleen said to Barnabas who was now laying face down on the floor in silence.

Jacqueleen, noting that he was silent walked over to Barnabas and turned him over and saw something she had not expected.

Barnabas's old skin, his old, face, his white hair began to change. He was now becoming younger, this skin was tightening, his hair was changing from ice white to jet black. Jacqueleen's bite had began his transformation back to what he was before. 

Barnabas Collins had lived his life as a mortal since the 1972 transformation in Singapore and one giant mistake, a confrontation with a woman he believed died, testing her, causing her anger to boil over had no undone everything he had wished for. 

"What...................what have you done?" Barnabas said, his voice now sounding like his younger self.

"I've cured you, my love. I have cured you." Jacqueleen said as she knelt down next to Barnabas whos' neck wounds suddenly healed.

"Mr. Collins!? Mr. Collins!? Are you down here?" Xander said as he rushed down looking for his boss Barnabas. 

As Xander came down the stairs he saw Jacqueleen helping the now young Barnabas up from the ground. Xander's face turned white, his shock was written all over his body.

"Mr. Collins?" He questioned not understand how it could have been the same man he helped out of the car just an hour before.

Barnabas took deep breath and realized that Jacqueleen's bite had reversed everything. He was his old self again.

"Who are you?" Xander asked of Jacqueleen.

Jacqueleen turned to Barnabas who was still stunned himself of what had just occurred. She then turned back to Xander and said:

"Mrs. Jacquleen Welsh-Collins. Wife of Barnabas."