Monday, May 22, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 12: THE SOUND OF SILENCE

The empty void of sound at Collinwood would soon break with the sound of a baby crying in the furthest corners of the mansion. It was baby Canan who had been shaken when Anna's powers imploded bursting energy and flames through the entire house.

Kat was the first to come to on the floor. She shook her head dizzy with the drop to the ground after  what had just happened. She shook Caleb's body to wake him and he bounced up.

"What happened?" He said drowsily.

"Canan!" Kat exclaimed as the baby's cries continued. She quickly made her way up the great staircase and dashed down the hall to his room.

One by one the Collins family members and their friends woke up and dusted themselves off from the explosion.

Even though the felt the tremors and force of power that came from Barnabas crushing the powerful locket around Anna's neck, everything in the drawing room and in the foyer and the even the whole house was miraculously untouched and undamaged.

Anna's implosion had not destroyed the mansion, to the family's surprise it was in fact, in tact.

Carolyn adjusted her clothes and rushed into the drawing room as her memory of the moments before slowly crept into her mind. All she could think of was what Barnabas had done. He saved them. But where was he?

"Barnabas!!!" Carolyn exclaimed as she realized he wasn't with them.

"Carolyn! Wait!" David said grabbing her hand as Carolyn darted into the closed off drawing room from the foyer.

The group followed, but the room was empty. There was no Anna. No Jacqueleen.

And no Barnabas Collins.

"Where are they? Where's Anna???" Sebastian said in a panic running into the room searching all around.

"It's like the vortex around Laura sucked them in. Just like that, gone." David remarked.

"How can that be? Where'd they go?" Siobhan asked David who shrugged his shoulders.

"They can't just be gone, not just like that sucked into God knows where. They were just here. They were just here!" Carolyn said confused and looking around the room with Sebastian.

"Calm down, calm down." David said patting Carolyn on the shoulders.

Maggie walked over to the door where Kat was entering with her baby.  Their eyes met with tears. It was the first time Maggie had seen her grandson. Maggie smiled and extended her arms. Kat smiled and passed the baby off to her mother.

"He's an angel." Maggie said in a whisper.

"Is he ok?" Caleb asked as he rushed over to wife and child. Kat nodded he was.

"He's just an angel." Maggie repeated.

"There's literally no sign of them. They're gone like a puff of smoke, almost like they were never her in the first place." Loomis said examining the widows to see if they had perhaps made a quick escape.

"Whatever my mother's control over Anna was, it seems to have ended. Barnabas must have done something when he closed the door that interrupted with the flow of my mother's energy and caused it to collapse on itself. The vortex must have imploded and taken them all with it." David said trying to piece together what had happened.

"Barnabas basically shut the flow of power off...he stopped it from destroying us all." Loomis concluded.

"So they're just gone? Anna too?" Sebastian asked, tears welling in his eyes.

"They're gone." David confirmed to gasps of sadness from Carolyn and Siobhan.

"I don't sense him. I don't feel my father anymore. You know we've always had such a strong connection. And I don't know, something is different. I don't feel that anymore." Siobhan said as Carolyn came to her side..

"I don't want this feeling to end. I never want this feeling to end." Maggie said to Kat the other end of the room while holding her grandson Canan.

"Why don't we take him upstairs. He's probably hungry." Kat said as she and her mother Maggie walked together up the stairs.

"Are you ok?" Carolyn asked Sebastian who was staring out of the drawing room window.

"I never got to say goodbye to Anna, I never got to live my life with her, or experience the good things that come with a new love. How can this have happened?" He asked her in a sad voice.

"I don't know Sebastian, I can't answer that. Whatever happened when that door closed..." Carolyn said not knowing how to finish her statement.

"I thought I had finally found it Carolyn...I thought it was real. She promised me. She promised we'd be together after all of this." Sebastian lamented.

"Found what?" Carolyn questioned.
Sebastian paused and looked over at the matriarch of the Collins family and simply said one word

"....love."

****

The day progressed and things became calmer around the great mansion. In a small bight, naturally lit room just off the kitchen, a room the family called the tea room, David and Siobhan snuggled on a sofa.

"Will you stay?" David asked.

"What do you mean? I have a lot of work to do now that I'm in charge of Windcliff. Why would you ask that?" She asked.

"Your father is gone, I just thought maybe you'd go now too, people have a funny way of coming in and out of my life in rather strange fashions, I just thought...." David said before being interrupted by Siobhan.

"You thought I'd do the same. Well I can tell you that I am not going to do that. As of right now, David Collins, I'm not going anywhere. This is my father's most beloved place and I want to feel close to him forever....I'm not leaving. Being here at Collinwood will make my loss better. There's nothing more I want then to be apart of this family and here, where my father would have wanted me to be.....of course, if you'll have me." She said with a grin.

David smiled back and planted a deep romantic kiss on Siobhan's pouty pink lips. He kissed her like she had never kissed anyone before. She made him feel like no one had ever made him feel. 

For David and Siobhan. This was the real deal. 

****


Later that night, Maggie and Carolyn sat in the drawing room together. Finally a calm moment of time for the two friends to re-connect. The days of darkness and curses oddly seemed like a far off memory. It had been decades since they had felt this way. The quietness. The sereneness of the house felt strange and alien to them.

"I don't know if I can get used to this, can you?" Maggie joked as she sipped her tea.

"What do you mean?" Carolyn giggled.

"Normal. What in the world is normal? Is it this? I don't even know if I've ever felt it before." Maggie asked.

"It's something like this. How's Sebastian?" Carolyn questioned.

"Sleeping. He's been through so much. Loomis is going to make sure the D.A. doesn't bring up charges for what happened. He asked that that be the last favor the Collins family ever asks of him." Maggie said again with silly grin.

"If only." Carolyn said as she opened up the French doors of the drawing room letting in the fresh sea air from the crashing waves on Widow's Hill.

"I keep hearing little bits of conversation from everyone in the house, and I wondered if maybe you had any idea....do you think he's really gone?" Maggie asked.

"Do I think Barnabas is gone? For good? Maggie, I learned a long, long, long time ago that Barnabas Collins isn't just a man that came into our lives and turned it upside down then right-side up again. He's apart of the whole fabric of this house, of this land. He's more than just someone who lived here once, he...." Carolyn said pausing when she saw a small glimmer of light sparkle from the ground under a sofa.

"He's what?" Maggie asked as she continued to drink her tea.

Carolyn crouched down and put her hand under then reached for the glimmer of light coming from underneath. She searched around blindly for a few seconds, her arm going back and forth along the carpet until she finally hit something.

"Honey? What is it? What are you doing?" Maggie asked sitting up now from the sofa.

Carolyn grabbed on to the object and stood back up. She sat down next to Maggie. Carolyn's face stone and serious.

"What? What is it?" Maggie asked again now noticing Carolyn's strange reaction.

Carolyn opened her hand to reveal the onyx ring of Barnabas Collins.

****

Kat and Caleb were putting their little son to sleep in the nursery that once belong to Carolyn, and David and even Caleb when they were babies. It was a brightly painted blue with images hand painted maritime images on the walls.

"Do you think he'll remember any of this?" Kat asked Caleb in a hushed voice as they hugged above his crib.

"God now. He's tiny. All of this will be nothing but a dream...to us too, just you watch." Caleb said as he kissed his wife on the head.

"I'm just glad it's all over, you know? We can start something fresh and new and not have to worry about whatever is lurking in the shadows. I can literally have a good night's sleep now." Kat said in a quiet giggle. 

"No kidding." Caleb joked as the two both turned and walked out of the baby's room.

Canan, the baby, the next generation of Collins lay sleeping in a blue woolen jumper. His crib mobile of boats, whales, dolphins, ocean waves, spinning above his head and a sweet lullaby of Row Row Row your Boat singing him to sleep. 

Canan, then opened his eyes up at the mobile revealing a flash like spark in them. A flash of fire, a flash of light. Then suddenly ....it stopped.

The baby giggled at his mobile again and soon went off to sleep to dream of flames and birds of fire and one day...of freedom. 

****

In the wilderness just outside of Collinsport, the mystic hermit Ezrabette sat back in a chair that faced the glaring open windows of her living room. The spring breeze fluttered through cooling the room and kissing the exposed skin of her arms. She smirked. It was a welcomed harmonious feeling that she had percolating throughout her whole body, the same feeling that could easy disguise that of nerves.

She reached into a pocket in her black linen skirt and pulled out a deck of tarot cards. She fiddled with the edge of one card the she had removed from the deck. It was face down. She thought to herself should she turn it over and read what it had to say. Were the jittery feeling she was sensing truly those of happiness or the nervous system predicting another fate.

She turned the card over raveling the upside-down THREE OF WANDS...meaning Time. Distance in could be in reverse. Something was in reverse sequence.

"But....how?" Ezrabette said to herself as she looked at her wall clock.

The clock flicked backwards then forwards again, then backwards, then striking midnight then backwards again until it came back to the actual time of the day. Ezrabette needed to know who this card was meant for, she pulled another, this one, an upright EMPEROR. 

****

The clock in the main foyer ticked away the minutes until midnight. Candles lit down the hall flickered a glowing orange light that bounced off the faces of the many portraits of Collins family members from the past. 

There was Naomi Collins. Her raven dark hair, her beautiful deep brown eyes dressed in a black gown dripping in diamonds. Her smile just a hint of glee, much like the famed Mona Lisa. 

There was Quentin Collins who's stoic and powerful face loomed over the hall like he was standing guard. His trademark sideburns and thick dark hair made him stand out among the portraits. He was a protector, a rebel, a fighter. 

Further down the hall, the portrait of Elizabeth Collins-Stoddard. A  more recent addition to the family's art collection. It had been commissioned by Carolyn and painted by her artist friend in London 5 years after Elizabeth died. It was Carolyn's favorite piece. Elizabeth sat in the painting like a queen on her thrown. Her hair tied up in intricate knots speckled with pearls. Her face, a tad sad and lonely, the way Carolyn remembered her. The way she was. 

The family had come a long way. Curses, twists of fate landing them in places no one ever dared go, or even believed real. With every good and happy calm the family enjoyed, in the back of their minds they knew, the shadows would always creep back in turn their lives upside down again. That's what it meant to be a member of this family, the deal with the dark and the light, the good and the evil. It was their destiny. it was their way of life. 

The midnight chime clanged away on the grandfather clock in the foyer first brought to the house by Edward Collins. A clock crafted in Ireland and brought to Collinwood in pieces then reassembled bit by bit for all the family to enjoy.

At the top of the stairs listening to the clock: Carolyn Collins Stoddard-Thorne dressed in black trench-coat, leather gloves and a black beret, her luxurious blond hair shooting out from under like rays of sun.

She slowly made her way down the staircase and into the foyer. She looked into the dim drawing room to see if anyone was up. It was empty.

She slowly walked around the corner to see down a small servant's hall towards room Julia Hoffman, and later Kimberly, used as an office. Empty now, and silent. 

The coast was clear.

She opened the great front door and standing there waiting for her was her driver Powell dressed in all black for their midnight ride. He smiled at her and opened the back door for her to enter.

"Thank you." Carolyn whispered as the mist from below Widow's Hill sprayed all over the front of the house and on the car's windshield. 

He started the car and the radio began playing The Sound of Silence by Simon & Garfunkel. Powell rushed to turn it off so it wouldn't bother Carolyn but she put her hand up to stop him.

"No, no....it's ok. Leave it on." She said.

They drove through the sleepy town while the song played, it's slow guitar pinged along in time with the bouncing of their tires on the cobble stone streets. The fog rolled across the front of their car like smoke billowing from a fire. Carolyn sat in the back seat silently, stoically, her hands clenched tightly in the black leather gloves. She looked out of her window as the small quaint homes passed them by, street after street. Fog filled neighborhood after fog filled neighborhood.

Finally they drove up a Eagle Hill Cemetery. The gate wide open. The burial plots smokey with the fog spilling over the ancient tombstones. The car curved around the windy access road caved in the cemetery and finally it came to a stop.

The Collins family mausoleum. Carolyn stepped out.

"I'll only be a minute Powell, just one minute." She said softy, he nodded. 

Carolyn walked up the path and came to the front gate, she removed a key from her pocket and slipped it into the lock that bound the intricately welded gate shut.

Carolyn smiled at the gate, she remembered a family joke about the gate and it's purpose. Was it there to keep people out or to keep people in. Of course, the answer was really both. 

She turned the key, and unlocked the gate. The midnight horn shaped moon just above her head lighting her way in. As she walked past the dusty, spider-webbed entrance, she came across some of the old family members tombs. 

NAOMI COLLINS  and her husband JOSHUA COLLINS 

Naomi and Joshua's daughter SARAH COLLINS

their great-great-nephew JEREMIAH COLLINS 

His wife CATHERINE WELSH-COLLINS


Jeremiah and Catherine's son ROGER COLLINS

and of course, Roger's sister Carolyn's mother ELIZABETH COLLINS-STODDARD

Carolyn smiled as she passed her hand over her the letters of her mother's name. She walked slowly past the tombs and came to the back of the mausoleum where two iron lion's faces hung. One with a ring through it's mouth. Carolyn, knowing the history of the room, knowing the secrets of her family, pulled the ring and slowly pushed open a stone door that opened and lead her to a secret room, that wasn't so secret. 

A hail of dust fell to her feet from the inside. It was dark. It was damp, and frankly, Carolyn felt a shiver go up her spine and settle in the back of her head. She hadn't been here in years. She hadn't seen the inside of this place since she was a young woman. The memory of it still haunter the corners of her mind, nothing could remove them. The screams. The terror. The death.

She took a breath and stepped forward.

For a room that hadn't been open, in what Carolyn believed to be years, it oddly smelled of flowers. Roses to be exact. She walked forward and pulled a small candle and match book from her trench-coat. She lit the candle and walked to the back corner of the room where a stone sarcophagus lay. Chains that once locked it's lid were strewn on the ground with broken links from decades past. Chains from 1967. Carolyn moved the chains with her foot so she could get close to the sarcophagus.

It was all symbolic now. It was just a piece of her family history sitting in a dusty room inside her family's burial champers. What it represented was the life and the man that was Barnabas Collins. The man who changed her life forever. The man who, good or bad, came into her world and became the father-figure she loved and hated all in one person. A man who was haunted by a curse and wanted nothing more then to find love and peace but knew the battles within him were otherworldly, supernatural.

 His was an experimental existence.... of being human while at the same time inhuman. 

As Carolyn stood in the damn cold room, her right hand was tightly curled into a fist. She finally relaxed it and release what was inside. Barnabas' onyx ring that Maggie found on the floor inside Collinwood after Anna's vortex collapsed. 

It was the final piece of him. It was the last connection she had to Barnabas Carolyn, and she believed it deserved to be here...in the empty mausoleum where he once rested.

"You left this behind." She said, with tears rolling down her face as she placed it on top of what once was Barnabas' coffin in the lonely empty room.

It was her way of putting Barnabas, where ever he was, to rest once more.

Carolyn took a deep breath of air and grabbed the candle and started to make her way out of the secret room behind the Collins family's remains. but as she got to the entrance she turned around and looked back one more time to the coffin and smiled. 

She then took the candle and placed it at the foot of a stone urn that decorated the room.

"No more darkness." She whispered to herself as she closed the secret door behind her and left the candle burning in the room. The candle's wax created a pool of wax at the base of the urn and ran down to the floor pooling again and hardening. 

The onyx ring sat atop the coffin of Barnabas Collins, like the crown jewels on the coffin of a dead monarch, bestowing it's rarity with pride, the candle light flicking in it's dark stone and silver band.

Suddenly a chill came upon the room. An icy air breeze that felt like a winter storm overtaking every bit of oxygen.

The candle went out in a puff.

The wax at it's wick cooled and hardened at the base of the stone urn.

Then, the creaking sound of something opening, like an old door slowly being pushed open, it's hinges bending and twisting with agony after  years and years of solid decay.

It was Barnabas' coffin.

Deep inside the coffin and the silent blackness came a hand. It crept at the lid like a spider slowly stepping off it's web onto a surface searching for prey. The hand, grey in color,  but strong with thick fingers, carefully pushed the lid up further and reached over to the top of the sarcophagus and grasped onto the ring. The hand, cold and icy, curled and held the ring tight in it's grip then slowly retracted back into the coffin....

The candle suddenly sparked a flame And the lid closed to the empty sound of dead silence. 

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 11: WHEN COMES THE VAMPIRE

In a small single story apartment with a long brick walk way, a man lies on the floor breathing shallow breaths. His mind clouded with the pain and suffering and screams of those who's lives he took. It was Sebastian, unconscious, shaking, and not fully understand what Laura's curse had done to him.

Kat and Maggie slowly made their way to the front door of the apartment. Their hearts beating faster and faster as they approached. They had no idea what they'd find inside.

The apartment was trashed. It had been ransacked by Sebastian himself while he was in wolf form. Maggie and Kat walked carefully through the turned over furniture, the spilled garbage cans, the broken picture frames and shattered glass.

"My god...." Maggie said cringing at the horrible state of the apartment.

"How did no one in the other buildings call the police when he made this mess?" Kat asked in a similar quiet voice, to Maggie's shrug.

They continued into the apartment but didn't have to search long, in the very next room was Sebastian shivering on the floor.

Maggie rushed over and fell to her knees next to her suffering son. The guilt consumed her. This was all her fault, had she never faked her death to escape Thatcher's cruelty and had Kat and Sebastian move in with Ezrabette to be safe, none of this would have happened. Sebastian wouldn't have gone astray and been dealt the cards he was.

"I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry." Maggie said cradling her son.

Kat stood close by letting Maggie and Sebastian have their moment.

As the family reunited some more inside, Loomis arrived after following Kat and Maggie. He slowly walked into the apartment, silent, so no one would hear. He pulled his gun and carefully stayed back behind a wall listening.

"Bash....it's Kat....can you hear me? Can you open your eyes?" Kat asked now kneeling next to her mother.

Sebastian moaned a slight painful moan and grabbed his side in pain.

"He must of hurt himself when he crashed through my window." Maggie said looking over Sebastian's body for injuries.

"He's all scratched up, look." Kat noted.

"From the glass in the window. Sebastian, if you can hear us, please open your eye. Please." Maggie continued.

Sebastian moan a little more but heard his mother's familiar voice. He slowly opened his eyes and looked up at Maggie, the mother he hadn't seen in over 20 years. He squinted, trying to make sense of what he was seeing.

"It's alright. I'm here." Maggie said caressing his head.

"Is it really you?" Sebastian said in a quiet voice questioning his vision. "Am I dead?"

"No, no you're not. You're alive. And I'm alive. And we're together again. I'm so sorry this has happened to you, if I could just go back and change everything I would, but ....just know that I'm here now." Maggie answered.

"How do you feel?" Kat questioned and Loomis peeked around the corner from the other room, still gun in hand.

"My ribs..." Sebastian replied. "What happened?"

"You don't remember? You don't remember what you did?" Kat asked.

"I remember being here with Anna. I remember telling her I loved her and but she had to change me again. She had to make me do what Laura wanted so that she could be free of her." Sebastian explained.

"Laura? Who's Laura?" Kat asked.

"Laura Collins." Sebastian answered.

"Laura Collins is here? Laura is in Collinsport? Has she taken Anna?" Maggie asked knowing Laura's full history.

"No. Anna is Laura. Laura is Anna. They're the same....two different minds one body." Sebastian answered.

Maggie looked at Kat with fear in her eyes. She knew the power Laura Collin, the phoenix was capable of. She knew the strength and the pain she could submit on to so many people with just a blink of an eye. It was clear that she had taken over control of Sebastian when he committed his killings, it was unclear however, just how far Laura would go to get what she wanted: David.

"She's back for David. I know it." Maggie answered remembering the pain Laura caused David when he was a young boy and she took over as his governess when Vickie left town.

"Who is she?" Kat questioned as they helped Sebastian up.

"She's David's mother. She's incredibly powerful. And very dangerous. We have to warm him, we can't let her surprise him this way." Maggie said grabbing Sebastian's hand.

"We can't let them hurt Anna either. She's a victim too." Sebastian reminded them.

"No one is going anywhere!" Loomis said pointing his gun at Sebastian. "I'm gonna have to take you in Bash. You'll have to answer for the crimes you committed."

"Loo, please, we have to find Anna Tate. We have to." Kat asked of her partner. "We can fix this with Bash when we do find her. Locating Anna and stopping her from doing any more damage is paramount. You can put the gun down."

"You lied to me. You said you would't keep any secrets from me, we're partners Kat!" Loomis said angrily.

"Detective, you don't understand, we don't have time for this. We have to get to Collinwood as soon as possible. This is very urgent." Maggie pressed.

"No one is going to Collinwood! We're all going downtown to the police station where Sebastian is going to be arrested for the murders of Nick Blair, the three fishermen on the docks, and Thatcher Banning." Loomis said pulling out his handcuffs.

"What??? Thatcher Banning?" Sebastian exclaimed. "Kat, what's going on?" He added panicking of the realization he killed his own father.

 "We were going to explain to you but..."Kat answered before Loomis' police radio strapped around his chest went off.

"Detective McGovern, we've got reports of a strange disturbance at the Collinwood estate. You asked we contact you if anything happened out there, proceed with instructions." The voice over the radio said.

"Anna." Sebastian said.

Maggie looked at everyone in the room and shook her head with worry. "No.....Laura."

Kat glanced over at Loomis, he was still pointing his gun. The look she gave him was one that expressed their need to get to Collinwood before it was too late, before Laura had a chance to destroy everyone, including Kat's baby Canan who was there.

"Loo, please." She mouthed.

"Ok. Let's go. Collinwood, everyone in my car. Come on!" Loomis said as he put down his gun.

The foursome dashed off through the apartment, Maggie leading then Sebastian. Kat grabbed Loomis' hand and mouthed 'thank you'.

"This is McGovern, make sure you keep all personnel away from the mansion until further notice." Loomis said into his police radio.

As he removed his hand from the radio button he found himself alone in the main room for a split second.

"I better not regret this." Loomis said to himself before quickly making his way through Sebastian's disheveled apartment and into his car.

****

There was a heat, a fire, a molten power pulling energy surrounding the entire mansion. It was like a vortex of wind sucking in everything in site. Barnabas and Jacqueleen burst through the front door covering their faces from the heat. As he peeked through his thick fingers he saw a bright light in the center of the drawing room exploding with the what seemed like flames from the sun pulling everything in it's orbit into it.

Grasping on to the walls and heavier furniture, the Collins Family: Caleb, David, Carolyn.

"Barnabas!!!!" Carolyn screamed from behind a sofa. The pulling power from Anna's body was beginning to singe the ends of her air and dry her lips.

The fury of the phoenix, Laura Collins had finally come to the Mansion, it had come and it had come to destroy what she could not have. A family. A real family.

Barnabas pushed Jacqueleen aside to keep her safe, she fell to the floor and hid under a large cherry wood table in the foyer. her mind raced with confusion. What was she seeing? What was happening around her? It felt like the apocalypse.

Barnabas charged forward dodging flying laps and floating picture frames and coached down next to Carolyn.

"What's happened? What is this?" He yelled over the loud noise of energy coming from Anna's body.

"It's Laura. She's .....she's come back to kill us all!" Carolyn said grabbing on to Barnabas jacket.

Barnabas didn't have much history with Laura, and what he did remember was that she was a creature who came back to life over and over again, and for that he did feel a strange kinship, but Laura was consumed by her anger and fury of her past, she wanted revenge and she wanted those that harmed her or those that did not bother with her to pay for their, in her mind, disloyalty.

And at the core of her, she was a mother, who felt like she was pushed aside by a powerful family and most of all the son she really loved, David.

Barnabas jumped over to a different part of the drawing room where David and Caleb where, holding on tight resisting the powerful suction of energy coming from Laura's necklace around Anna's neck. Anna, for her part, was compelled engulfed in white and yellow energy. A powerful bright light that was controlling her every move.

"You must get Carolyn and get her out of here before it's too late. Anna can't hold on much longer!" Barnabas yelled over the noise.

"What will happen?" Caleb asked.

"She'll self destruct. We have to move...now!" Barnabas yelled.

David nodded in agreement and pushed Caleb forward as the two went to where Carolyn was, the powerful energy still burning through the room yet nothing actually seemed physically burned.

As David and Caleb passed Anna from a distance, an arm like beam of light reached out and grabbed David and began to pull him in.

"DAVID!!!" A voice screamed from the entrance of the drawing room.

It was Siobhan who had stayed the night at Collinwood after her argument with Barnabas. She had heard the commotion down stairs and ran past Jacqueleen to see what was the matter.

"Stay Back!" Barnabas warned his daughter.

As Barnabas quickly grabbed David's free hand he began to pull David free. The powerful light of fire from Anna's body was unable to hold on, and was showing signs of weakening.

"She's beginning to slow down!" David said, now free from the fire, clutching Siobhan in his arms.


Outside, Loomis' car carrying Kat, Sebatian, Maggie pulled up into the Collinwood drive. They could see the light from Anna blinking and flashing in the windows of the entire house. It was a site of intense power that they were all worried about.

"It's Anna. She's beginning her purge." Sebastian said.

"What do you mean?" Kat asked as the car pulled up.

"She wants her son. I can feel her. Laura is coming out. She wants to come and take David...she wants to kill everyone and take David." Sebastian said as he got closer to the powerful Laura.

"Dear god." Maggie whispered to herself.

The foursome entered the house of flames. The wind was so powerful, it was pulling anything loose from their clothes into it's vortex. Maggie lost her footing, and held on to Sebastian.

"We have to stay back or we'll get sucked in!" Sebastian yelled as the other members of the Collins family turned to the front door as the other's walked in.

The group gathered together in the foyer, Anna's body now pulling things off the walls, the carpet from the floor, the chandeliers from the ceilings.

"How do we stop her?" Carolyn screamed over the noise.

"It looks like the center of this vortex is Anna's necklace we have to break the pull, the pull is the necklace!" David screamed too.

"But it's so hot!! The fire is so hot!!" Kat said as Caleb came around and grabbed her close.

The group had to keep moving back further and further as the phoenix came closer to absorb their lives and take David away. The wood panels on the walls began to crack and fly into Anna's powerful vortex of light.

"Get down!!!" Barnabas yelled as the group ducked the flying panels.

"We have to stop her ...she's going to destroy us all!" Maggie screamed.

"She doesn't want to hurt us!! Anna Doesn't want us to be hurt! We have to make sure we keep her safe too. She's innocent!" Sebastian said of his love.

"We can't allow her to continue. We can't." Barnabas said as he turned from his family to face the phoenix.

"Barnabas! What are you doing, stop!" Carolyn said as she quickly grabbed on to  his hand."

"Carolyn, step back. step back!" Barnabas said to his beloved cousin.

"You'll be killed, what are you doing?" Carolyn responded.

"Stop! Barnabas! She's too powerful!" Jacqueleen said grabbing on to his other hand.

"Let go....we have to end this." Barnabas said as he flung Carolyn and Jacqueleen.

"Father no, listen to them. You can't do this!!!" Siobhan said going after her father. "You'll be killed." She added as she step in his way.

Barnabas grabbed her face, his beautiful daughter. Her bright blue eyes filling with tears. Her lip trembling to hold them back.

He smiled as debris began to fly past their heads missing them by inches and kissed her cheek.

"I'm already dead." Barnabas said. "I'm sorry." He added as he pushed his daughter backwards and into the safety of David's arms.

Barnabas leaped into the drawing room and began to close the sliding doosr but not before Jacqueleen jumped in.

"NO!" Carolyn screamed as the doors shut on Jacqueleen.

Jacqueleen felt the swirls of Anna/Laura's gaining anger and powers. The fire's beating down on her skin. The hot air of evil and destruction.

"What have you done?" Barnabas scolded Jacquleen.

"I won't be here without you." She said to Barnabas' dismay.

The doors began to shake on their hinges. The fire grew closer.

The phoenix was getting larger. Getting hotter. Getting angrier. Laura wanted her freedom from Anna's body, but still needed two more souls, she needed the final pieces of her puzzle to finally free her and she saw that Jacqueleen and Barnabas as those last two final pieces.

The powerful energy of the phoenix sprouted two large arms of light and flames and latched on to Barnabas and Jacqueleen, pulling them both into the vortex of flames.

Their skin began to peel back exposing bones. Their hair began to turn to fire and burn off. Their clothes ignited like kerosene soaked rags.

And as the two vampires got closer to the end of their drag into the flames, Barnabas saw the glowing locket around Anna's neck. He was the full power source of energy, it was the eye of the storm.

He reached for it, the flames batting at his burning flesh, he pulled his body out from the arm that was holding him, grabbed the locket from around Anna's neck and pulled it off.

He had it in his hands.

The Phoenix's two large red eyes made of fire and burning sulfur looked down on Barnabas who held the locket that carried her life force within.

He squeezed the locket in the palm of his hands and broke it. The vortex then exploded, Laura's voice could be heard escaping and screaming a painful burning scream that tore through in the doors of the drawing room in a a giant ball of light where the rest of the family was waiting knocking them to the ground with it's burst of vibrations.

Carolyn. David. Caleb. Kat. Sebastian. Maggie. Loomis. Siobhan all lay on the floor unconscious from the Anna's explosion.

There was a stillness in the foyer where they lay, the stillness of a crypt.

And nothing more.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 10: PHOENIX BURNING


The red and blue police lights feverishly flashed in the early morning sun around the Evan's cottage. The police tape surrounded the home and Maggie sat cuddled in a blanket on the back of an open ambulance. Her face swollen with tears as she watched two men bring out the covered body of Thatcher Banning and placed it into another van.

Her mind slipped back to flashes of her fight with Thatcher, then the window breaking, the beast jumping through tearing Thatcher to pieces. It played over and over in her head like a horror show.

Loomis and other Collinsport P.D. officers had arrived from another crime scene at the docks where three fishermen were similarly killed by the deadly animal runamok.

"Ma'am have you called anyone? Can I get someone to come stay with you?" Loomis said as he walked up to the van.

"Oh, I...yes. I'll give my friend Carolyn a call. Thank you detective." Maggie said snapping out of her flashbacks.

As Loomis wrote up a small preliminary report on Maggie's statement of the events, Kat arrived in a separate car. She got out, leaving the door ajar and walked over to Loomis who hugged her then pointed over to Maggie who was still sitting on the back of the ambulance.

Kat, walked slowly, she couldn't believe what she was seeing below the flashing police lights. It was her mother. Back from the dead...or so it would seem.

"Is it really you?" Kat asked quietly as she walked up to Maggie.

Maggie began to tear up, and only nodded yes.

"How? How can you be alive? All these years we were told you .....I don't understand this." Kat asked.

"I'm so sorry darling, I really am. If I could have made things different I would, it was the only way to keep you your brother safe. Your father would never leave you alone if I had custody. It just would have been an even worse hell. Kat, honey, I wanted to protect you both from him. You have to understand." Maggie explained.

Kat's heart melted. She was very little when the worst of her parent's relationship happened but the memory still clung to her all throughout her life. The arguments. The abuse. The pain. The screams. All she could do was look at her mother's face now, and feel only love, and sadness for the years they were apart,

"I don't remember you...I mean...I remember your eyes, and your smile. But your voice. I missed your voice." Kat said stepping closer to the mother she once believed was dead.

"I'm here now." Maggie said softly.

"What happened? How did he?....did you?" Kat asked trying to piece together the violent death of her father.

"No. He came up behind me and attacked me inside." Maggie said.

"How did he die?" Kat asked.

"Kat, where's Sebastian. We have to find him." Maggie said knowing the eyes she saw as the wolf's could only be Sebastian's and finding him before he did this again was paramount.

"Sebastian?" Kat asked confused in the sudden turn in topic. "I don't know. I haven't spoken to him in days. Have you had contact with him since you've been back?" Kat asked feeling there was so much more going on than she knew.

Maggie got up from the ambulance and grabbed Kat's hand. She squeezed it and looked deep into her eyes.

"Whatever that animal was that killed your father, killed those other people too. Kat, that animal is Sebastian. We have to get to him. We have to make sure he doesn't  hurt anyone else. And we don't have much time." Maggie said as Kat shook her head in disbelief.

"How? I don't understand what you're saying? How does that make sense?" Kat asked doubting what was the truth.

But the look in Maggie's face made her stop and think about her own unexplained past and the bizarre things she had gone through in the last 2 years of her life. The time travel, the strange occurrences at Collinwood. Was it now so hard for her to believe that Sebastian could have done this in any form? Even that of a wolf?

"Alright, fine. Let's find him. Let's go to his apartment." Kat said as she grabbed her mother's hand for the first time in 20 years and took her to her car.

Loomis looked on in suspicion. Once again his partner Kat was hiding something from an investigation breaking a promise she made to him to be open and honest about everything she knew when she knew it.

He handed the crime scene report he was filling out over to another officer and watched as Kat's car speed off with Maggie inside.

"Hey, listen, I've got to run. Can you guys take it from here? Something's come up." Loomis said to the agreeing officers.

Loomis got into his own car and sped off towards wherever Kat was going.

****

At the mansion, Anna causally walked in after being out all night. She, of course, a woman in her mid 20s had no one to ask permission to, but the fact was everyone in the Collins family now knew something was amiss with their beautiful house guest. Especially David who was sitting in the drawing room waiting for her.

"Care for a coffee?" David said from the sofa to Anna who passed the drawing room door in the foyer.

"David! Good morning. I was just heading out." Anna said attempting to conceal she had been out all night.

"Yeah? So early? Maybe you can do some sort of research for the film you've come here for. Isn't that why you're in Collinsport? Researching for film role?" David replied using Anna's cover-story against her as she came into the drawing room looking tired and somewhat disheveled.  "Looks like its been a rather long night for you actually." He added handing her a mug of hot coffee.

Anna relented and seemed annoyed.

"You're right, it has been a really long night. Would you mind if I just went off to bed and finsihed this inquisition later?" She shot back.

David looked at her with a funny smile, his eyebrows raised, not expetcting such a sassy response Anna  noticed and tried to warm things over.

"Maybe we can have dinner or something. I don't think we should be talking about this right now." She said as she turned to make her way up to her room.

"Is that how you treat your own son? Just ignore the fact that he knows the truth about everything. I know what's happening. I know who you really are." David said finally exposing Anna's secret identity to her shock and horror.

Anna felt trapped, the burning inside her soul began to bubble up again. She knew it was now or never...and slowly turned and looked at David in the eyes.

His mother, the phoenix Laura Murdoch-Collins, the woman who could never die and was reincarnated into Anna Tate slowly and steadily came through. Anna's face oddly changed, yet it remained the same. Her eyes went from an ice blue to a warm amber, hot like lava. In the odd switch in personality, David stepped back in trepidation.

"How did you know?" Laura said in an altered Anna's voice.

"It is you." David said, oddly struggling to believe his mother had come back in this form.

"How did you know?" Anna repeated.

"It wasn't very hard after I saw you out last night walking around alone on the docks. All the feelings I used to get when I was a child started flooding back. The same feelings. The same terrors. What are you doing here? What have you done to Anna?" David questioned.

"It's all a matter of time before you understand, David. I just wish you didn't find out this way. Anna is fine, she'll be fine once this is all over too. You'll see." Laura explained.

"How can she be fine? She's ....she's possessed by you!" David explained.

"Stop that! she's not possessed. Listen, Anna has her own life. She's been able to grow up normal. She's just had two minds. Two sets of memories. She's lived many lives. Everything I know she knows. But it won't be for long." Laura continued.

"Why? What have you done?" David pressed.

"Here....this locket. It contains my soul David, it contains the very essence of my being. Anna has always had it with her, and all I've ever needed was the magic number 7....7 other souls that leave this earth by the mouth of a lycan. And I found that lycan. And he's doing the work for me. We'll be together soon!" Laura said in a delusional turn of phrase.

"Lycan. A werewolf. You've....what have you done?" David said walking closer to the phoenix.

"All in good time." Laura said smugly. "When it all comes together, that's when I can finally take you away. My son. My sweet son." She added putting her hand on his face.

As the two continued to talk Carolyn and Caleb walked in. Carolyn was on her way to spend the day with Caleb at the office. They were expecting to see Anna in such a state.

"What's going on?" Caleb said in a confused tone of voice when he saw Anna touching his father David.

"Get out. You guys should go." David said worried about what Laura would do to them.

"Let them stay! It's a family reunion. I would love to get to know my grandson, Caleb, It's me. Grandma Laura." Laura said, forgetting she was still inside Anna's body.

"Dad?" Caleb said confused and a bit frightened.

Carolyn noticed the locket around Anna's neck glowing, and seething with something sinister deep inside. After her talk with David the night before she agreed that Anna was being controlled by Laura, and now, it was obvious what the weapon of control was.

The locket.

Carolyn daringly reached for the locket around Anna's neck, but Anna swatted Carolyn's hand away then pushed Carolyn down to the floor. Caleb, in a knee-jerk-reaction grabbed Anna by an arm and then reached for the locket on the other hand but the phoenix was too fast. She grabbed Caleb's hand and began to squeeze it pushing deep into  his hand with her might cracking his phones.

Caleb fell to the floor in pain.

"Tsk tsk." Laura said as she watched David look on in shock as  his son and cousin lay on the floor both in a bit of pain.

"You're just as sick as you've always been. Nothing has changed has it mother? Nothing." David said in disgust as he went over to help Carolyn up off the floor.

"You shouldn't speak to me that way. I'm your mother." Laura growled.

"You're not a mother. You've never been a mother. You've only come back when it suited you and those few times that you come, all you did was make things worse for all of us. You don't belong here!!!" David screamed.

"Dad what are you doing?" Caleb said getting up off the floor holding his hand in pain. "She's crazy." He added noting David was only making the phoenix inside Anna more angry.

Caleb's intuition was right. All Laura wanted was to feel wanted by her son. All she wanted was for them to be together and live a happy life now that things were finally going here way. At least she thought. All she wanted was for another chance to be his mother and to be near him and take care of him and be everything he ever wanted a mother to be.

But those years were long gone. David was in his 50's now. He was a grown man who had lived his whole life without her, withing the creature of fire that created him with his father Roger. Laura was nothing more than a figure of his imagination at this point, a person that only existed to destroy and to putrefy relationships, especially David's relationships.

Laura's anger over the resentment and anger she was sensing from David was starting to overtake her. His disgust for her was palpable, so much so that she could feel it pour over her like rain. Her eyes began to change again, her mind ignited, her heart became a molten rock of lava.

"Get out." David said with a growl.

And without skipping a beat, the phoenix screamed a horrible scream that shook the entire house. Flames in the form of powerful light surged shot out from behind her like a sun burning and bursting in space. The room became engulfed in what seemed like flames more powerful than any wild fire anyone had every seen yet nothing was actually burning.

There was heat however. They could feel the heat like hover over them like a million exploding volcanoes. The light from the screaming banshee like phoenix had overtaken the entire mansion threatening to destroy it. Walls were shaking. Pictures of family members of the past fell from the walls. Glass  shattered.

David's pure anger freed the phoenix.

 ****

"What was that?" Jacqueleen said  over at the Old House as she sat at a table playing a game of solitaire.

"What was what?" Barnabas answered annoyed.

"You didn't feel that shaking? Something is shaking. Look...look at the chandelier." Jacqueleen pointed out.

Barnabas looked up and noticed it too....then he stood up, and it became more clear. Something was indeed making the room shake.

"What could it be?" Jacqueleen asked.

The shaking became stronger and soon they could also hear the house move and ground groan from below their feet.

Barnabas ran over to a window that looked out on to the lawn that faced Collinwood.

"Something at the main house." Barnabas answered as he quickly got down off the chair and grabbed his jacket.

"You can't go over there Barnabas. No one is supposed to know that you can walk in the sunlight. Remember?" Jacqueleen said mentioning the part of their curse that had changed.

Barnabas paid no attention to her and continued on  his way to the main house. He opened the front door of the old house, and a heat burst into the room as if it were the dead of summer.

"It's like the surface of hell. What's happening?" Jacqueleen said backing away from the door.

Before she knew it Barnabas had dashed out in the direction of the main house, fearing a fire, and Jacqueleen followed suit...the two vampires, unknowingly headed in the path of destruction, death, and of no return.



Monday, May 1, 2017

Series 7/Chapter 9: THE WITCHING HOUR


The old House dropped in temperature. The fire that roared in the fire place suddenly extinguished  in a puff of smoke ...every ember left to gray mash of ashes. A gust of cold air thrust itself into the room and blew out all the candles that were lit leaving Barnabas and his new wife in frosty darkness.

Barnabas had just been disowned by his beloved daughter Siobhan after she discovered he was a killer vampire who turned Jacqueleen into one of his own and now an even bigger threat was looming...something was killing people in Collinsport, and Barnabas saw the writing on the wall.

If word got out to the town the he had returned once again. They'd come for him.

Jacqueleen was sitting on the sofa now, unfazed by the icy breath she could  now see coming out of her own mouth. Her mind felt at ease to know that what she said allowed Siobhan to come to her own conclusions about her father's true nature. For her own sanity Jacqueleen plead the fifth.

"You vengeful harlot." The vampire said, turning towards Jacqueleen, his eyes completely black, his fangs out and ready for a bite. His anger boiling over. "You did that on purpose." he growled again.

Jacqueleen was put on guard and switched to defense mode, she hissed a hateful hiss and released her own fangs that darted out of her mouth. She jumped up on the sofa and swung her hands at him like a panther ready to strike, her sharp fingers like claws that could slice his skin open with just one swing.

"Step any closer and you'll wish you never breathed my name." Jacqueleen said with a twisted grin.

"I already do. You've done nothing but destroy my life the second you laid eyes on me and for that i wish you and the pain hell can bestow on the likes of us." Barnabas said slowly casing Jacqueleen who stood on the sofa.

The tension between Mr. and the New Mrs. Collins had come to ahead. She wanted him to feel the pain that he inflicted on her, an eternity by her side in  marriage; he wanted to be free of everything associated with this curse, but they were tied together now by fate, and she was using it to her advantage.

"I should have made sure you died the night I tasted your blood. I should have made sure there wasn't an once of it left in your miserable body. You've taken everything from me now." Barnabas growled.

"Have I? And what did you take from me but my whole life! It's gone! This is your punishment Barnabas Collins and I am your creation, yours forever, chained together.  I will never leave." She said coming down off the sofa, in a commanding show of force and grinning the vampire's grin.

Barnabas lunged at her but Jacqueleen was quicker. She was much more agile than  he and leaped over the sofa and landed behind him.

"What are you going to do? Kill me? I'm already dead." Jacqueleen taunted.

"There are ways to kill a vampire you fool. And if I get my way you'll end up with a stake in your heart in no time." Barnabas warned.

"Really? And just who is going to drive that stake into my heart dear husband? It can't be you. You'll burn up into ashes if you take the life of another vampire. And trust me, if you even attempt at getting someone else to do it I'l make sure Siobhan's life is a living hell." Jacqueleen warned.

"You couldn't. " Barnabas said trying to call her bluff.

"Oh no? What do you think will happen to her once this town discovers she's the daughter of a murderous vampire. The same man who probably killed hundreds of this very town's own citizens. Thousands maybe. Maybe even that man from last night on the lawn." Jacqueleen answered.

"I didn't kill him. I was here with you." Barnabas replyed.

"You think they're going to believe you? They'll have you locked away in your coffin again or drowned in holy water before you can even try to explain yourself. This isn't a town where people get second chances. I can sense it already with how Siobhan reacted to hearing you were blood thirsty again." Jacqueleen explained.

And as they spoke Barnabas was able to get close and lunged at her again, grabbing her arm and pulling her in close, so close he could smell her perfume all over her body.

"I should take your life right here, right now. Finishing you off forever." Barnabas said in a toothy voice.

"Do it, I dare you, just do it, you'll see...we'll be sentenced to hell together just as we are here...." Jacqueleen said looking into Barnabas' black eyes. "Make your choice, kill me and you'll die too, have someone else kill me and I'll make sure the town destroys you....Or..." Jacqueleen said pausing to feel Barnabas's breathing on her.

She closed her eyes and felt his breath on her cheek. She breathed it in, it was as close as she got in a long time to feeling rawness of another being, the human side of her needed that touch, that feeling. That breath.

"Or?" Barnabas asked waiting for her to respond.

"Leave everything be, and I will make sure Siobhan comes back and you reunite." Jacqueleen answered surprising Barnabas.

"Why? What's in this for you?" He questioned.

She pulled away from his grab, his eyes now back to normal, his fangs put away. She rubbed her sore arm and stood to the side of the room.

"What's in it for you if she and I reunite again." Barnabas repeated.

"A second chance." Jacqueleen said softly looking into her husband's suspicious face. "I know that's all you've ever wanted. I can grant." Jacqueleen said after a pause.

Barnabas looked on into the distance of the room for a second. He calmed down again and realized she was right. There was nothing else left for him to lose.

He sat back down, gave her a nod, and snapped his fingers. The snap instantly re-igniting the fire place to warm the Old House drawing room.

Jacqueleen smiled and sat back down too, but the pressure was on. If she failed to deliver Siobhan to Barnabas, she knew it was curtains.

****

As the clock continued to count the minutes towards the birth of a new day, Carolyn was wide awake in her bedroom. She had this aching feeling in  her body. The feeling that the world was off kilter, that the stars were aligned and that madness was setting in all around her. She kept thinking of her confrontation with Barnabas at the old house, and the woman he was with in the basement, the woman he said was his new wife, Jacqueleen.

She could not get the woman's face out of her head, she swore to herself she had seen that face before somewhere.

She searched through an old box left by her mother years ago, her gut was telling her to look there. She dumped all of its contents on to her bed and sorted through the various old photos and papers. She came upon a book that carried the names of just about every Collins family member that had ever lived. It was a living family tree and as she turned through its pages to see countless old photos. Memories of decades, and centuries past. The history of her whole family in one book.

Finally, she came to a page that was tuck to another. She carefully put her finger nail into the stuck papers and split them apart. And there it was, standing out like a sore thumb....a photo of the face she had been seeing in her mind...the photo of her great-grandmother Jacqueleen Walsh....the same woman she saw with Barnabas.

It was a shock. It was almost to strange to be true. Were they the same person? And as the thoughts ran through mind, she was reminded of the time period Barnabas traveled to to bring home baby Canan. It all fit together. Jacqueleen was her great-grandmother back from the dead.

Carolyn gasped and covered her mouth in shock. How could Barnabas have done this!? She thought, the reality setting in that the dead in this family never rest peacefully.

As Carolyn began to piece the identity of the woman in her mind, David quietly walked into her room.

"I saw your light on." He said in a soft voice. "What are you doing with all this stuff out so late at night?" he asked as he picked up an old picture.

Carolyn wasn't sure what to say, she grabbed the photo of their great-grandmother Jacqueleen and placed it back in the center of the book and closed it, for her it wasn't time to tell David what was happening over at the old house especially since Barnabas himself didn't seem too excited about the situation of Jacqueleen living there.

"I was just reminiscing." She said with a slight smile sitting on her bed.

"Well I'm glad you're up. I need to talk to you about Anna. I saw her just a little while ago out by the docks. I was having dinner in a restaurant and she came past the window not seeming herself. Something was off about her, and I couldn't tell right away. Actually this has been my feeling about her ever since she came to stay with us".  David said pausing for impact.

"What? What is it?" Carolyn said, concerned for her goddaughter.

"Do you think it's possible, some how, some way, that my mother could have returned?" David asked, expecting Carolyn to just laugh and blow off his strange idea.

"David, I don't understand. Laura? What does your mother Laura and Anna have to do with each other?" Carolyn asked connecting the dots on her own.

"I think Anna is my mother." David explains to Carolyn who shook her head in disbelief.
"Listen Carolyn, I know it sounds crazy but over the years we've seen how my  mom comes back and ...and she...I don't know. But I'm getting those feelings again. The same one's I used to get when I was a kid just before my mom would show up again and cause all that drama with my father. You remember don't you?" David said remembering.

"David, I've known Anna since she was just a baby, I mean how could she be Laura?" Carolyn asked.

"It's her Carolyn. I know it is. We have to find Anna and we have to make her tell us. I don't know what my mother is capable of after all these years closed up inside of Anna like this. She's very dangerous." David worried.

Carolyn got up from her perch on her grand bed and walked over to the her large window that faced the old house. Her mind began to wonder; again so many things happening all at once it was almost too much for her. She began to cry.

"Carolyn?" David said holding her by the shoulders from behind.

"David, this ....this has gone on too long. It's too much. If Anna is your mother, let's say that she is, what does she want? Why would she come back here after almost 5 decades? What's the reason?" Carolyn said sobbing into David's chest, her emotions getting the best of her.

"She wants a life. She wants her own life. It was taken from her over and over and over again and she had to keep coming back. The life she leads is an immortal one, until that burning inside of her finds it's peace she'll always come back. And of course there's me. She's always wanted to take me with her." David explained, a bit of pain squeaking past his usually strong voice.

Carolyn wiped her eyes, the stress of the day had taken it's toll on her. She walked over to her bedside and pushed all of her mother Elizabeth's papers and photos she had taken down from the closet over to the other side of the bed and lied down.

"I just want this day to be over. It has to be over." Carolyn said closing her eyes.

David could see she was exhausted. After dealing with Nick's death and Maggie's trouble with Thatcher, then finding Barnabas had returned with Jacqueleen, her great-grandmother, and now Laura was probably Anna....it was all too much.

"It's very late. I'm going to let you rest. Just sleep now." David said switching off Carolyn's bedside light.

He tiptoed back through the dark bedroom and closed the door behind him. His worry now reaching far  beyond whatever his mother was doing back in town, he now worried about Carolyn's well being.

Had she finally hit her breaking point? She was a woman of steel, the family's go-to rock. Had the rock finally crumbled?

****

Down on the first floor of the Collins' family home there was a late night knock on the great oak door. Caleb and Kat were sitting in the drawing room each having a night-cap and relaxing after a long day at work. It was odd to both of them to be receiving someone at the house so late at night. Odd, but never out of the question when it came to strange occurrences at Collinwood.

"Wait..." Kat said as Caleb got up to go to the door. "Someone was murdered on the lawn, I don't think you should just go and answer the door." Kat said as Caleb continued to make his way to the front door.

"Nick was killed by some kind of bear, hon, bear's don't knock on doors." Caleb said as he leaned down and kissed her on her forehead.

Caleb, still in his fancy grey suit from work, walked over to the door and opened it. It was Maggie.

"Ms. Evens. Is everything ok?" Caleb asked the familiar Collins family friend.

"Caleb it's so late, I know, and I'm sorry but I was hoping Carolyn was up. I need to speak with her." Maggie said feeling frantic after her conversation with Ezrabette about Thatcher roaming the town looking for her.

"It's almost 1 in the morning, she's dead asleep. Can't it wait until morning?" Caleb asked as Maggie slipped past him and stepped into the foyer turning her back to the open drawing room door.

"It's extremely urgent that I speak with Carolyn. She would understand if you woke her for me, I know she would." Maggie pushed.

"I really wish I could do that, but she's had a really awful night. She found someone on the front of the lawn brutalized by some animal. It's been all over the news...haven't you heard?" Caleb explained not knowing the full details of Maggie's relationship to the dead man Nick.

"That's what I have to talk to her about. Really, Caleb, please I can go up myself and just speak with her for a moment, she wouldn't mind." Maggie said starting towards the staircase.

"Ms. Evans, please, it's so late. I'm sure it can wait." Caleb said grabbing Maggie's arm.

Maggie was a nervous wreck. She knew Thatcher was hot on her trail. She knew he was coming for her and if she was found he'd surly expose that secret that she was still alive to her children Sebastian and Kat. It was a secret that to Maggie needed to stay dead and buried, it was also the same thing she wanted Thatcher to be: dead and buries. Only Carolyn, her partner in the plot, was too traumatized by the recent events to stay awake to help.

"You don't understand, this is urgent."  Maggie answered back.

"Maggie, if it's that pertinent to the person who died on our lawn, you should talk to my wife Kat. She's one of the detectives on the case. Hey Kat! Can you come in here." Caleb said calling for his wife and Maggie's daughter.

"NO!" Maggie said realizing she was about to get caught by the daughter who believed she was dead for almost 3 decades.

From inside the drawing room, Kat could hear there was a commotion but hadn't heard the details but once her named was called she slowly got up and made the short distance to the drawing room door the flowed into the open foyer.

Maggie tensed up and kept her back towards Kat still facing Caleb, her face frozen in fear that she was about to be exposed.

"Is everything alright?" Kat asked from the door.

"Ms. Ev--" Caleb began before being interrupted by Maggie.

"You're right. I should go. Please have Carolyn call me the very second she wakes up, Caleb. Please." Maggie said as she started for the front door.

"Wait a minute, you just told me how important and urgent it was to talk to Carolyn because it had something to do with the dead guy Nick, Kat can help." Caleb said blocking Maggie's path.

"Caleb, I think I should go. I've already upset the evening enough. It's been a long night for me too." Maggie said clutching her purse tightly as the nerves in her hands wound tighter and tighter like the loop of a hangman's noose.

"Are you sure?" Caleb asked looking deep into Maggie's green eyes.

"If it's alright with you, I can just..." Kat began as Maggie interrupted again.

"No it's fine. Thank you." Maggie said stopping short of turning around to be seen by her own daughter.

Maggie broke free from Caleb's grasp and darted for the door, her back still towards Kat.

Maggie opened the great oak door allowing the darkness of the night to swallow her whole. And once the door closed behind her she fell back upon it and let out a giant breath of air as if she had been holding in the whole time. Kat did not see her face. Her secret was still safe...for now.

Maggie's biggest fear was creeping up on her, if they all discovered the truth, that she was alive, her ex Thatcher would  make all their lives a living hell Thatcher was still out there...searching for her. To stay "dead" Maggie would protect her children from his return and abuse, if found alive he'd surly wreak havoc on them all.

She was undeterred. Thatcher had to die. Some way. Some  how.

"What in the world was that about?" Kat asked inside after Maggie left.

"I can honestly say I have not a single clue." Caleb with a silly grin as he walked up to Kat and hugged her.

"Who was she?" Kat asked laying her head on Caleb's chest.

"Just an old family friend. She's been through a lot over the years. She was once my dad's governess, and Barnabas kind of had a thing for her and ...well...let's just say she's connected to us forever." Caleb said lifting Kat's face towards his and kissing her lips slowly.

She smiled and closed her eyes savoring the moment and they drifted together upstairs to bed.

****

3am. The witching hour. 

Anna and Sebastian were still laying on the floor of his apartment in Collinsport. He slept long and deep after his night of horror killing three Fisherman down at the wharf for Anna's locket...the locket that needed souls to release the phoenix inside of her, the phoenix Laura Collins.

Sebastian's clock on the wall chimed marking the hour. Anna opened her eyes and shifted her weight over noticing her new lover Sebastian right next to her, his arm carefully pulled over her body holding her tight. 

Her locket began to glow again, the sign Laura was ready again for him to take more lives for her release.

"He's sleeping. Please." Anna said to the locket in her hand. 

It began to heat the skin of her palm, another signal that Anna's power over her own life was no match for Laura's controlling nature, the two had battles all of Anna's life over who was in control and at what times. 

Anna knew Laura's powers and knew that she could not win. She nudged Sebastian and woke him up.

"You have to go again. Sebastian, it's time." Anna said with sorrow in her eyes.

"I can't, I can't do this again. Please." Sebastian said in a sleepy voice.

"You have to. Once she has what she wants I'll be free of her too, you're the only one that can do this Sebastian." Anna said kissing Sebastian's lips.

"You don't know what it's like taking these lives. You don't know!" Sebastian begged.

Anna looked at him with sympathy and again knew neither of them had control of the situation, this was Laura's show and Sebastian and Anna were just players.

"It'll all be over soon." Anna said grabbing his handsome face with both hands, their bodies still locked together on the living room floor.

"And then what? Can we actually be together after all this is over?" Sebastian wondered.

"We will." Anna confirmed then kissing him on the lips.

"How can you be so sure? How can you look at me the same way again after all the things I've done?" Sebastian said in a hushed voice.

"It's time." Anna said looking down at her locket.

The locket began to glow again, stronger and stronger. Heat radiated from around Anna's neck ad began to seep out into the air. Sebastian jumped up from the floor where he was laying as the heat from Anna's locket swirled around him like a red hot fog.

And before he could even understand what was happening he was the monster again, prepared to threaten the people of Collinsport. 

Anna's eyes were red as fire, her hair was blowing as the swirling heat from the locket surrounded both of them her, mind went into the wolf's with laser precision and gave him his next directions.

"Find another soul to release me, wolf. Kill and give me the life-force I need to live again and take my son from this place." Laura's voice said from Anna's mouth.

Sebastian, in mid transition could feel Laura the phoenix bursting into his mind. He tried to push her our but it was too much. The control she had over Anna was powerful, but the control she had over him was even more.

As Laura's orders filled the wolf's mind he howled a bone chilling howl and dashed out of an opened window into the cold spring night leaving Anna in the swirling hot light from the locket around her neck. Laura's obsession with her son David, grown now and a grandfather himself, was about to become a danger for the entire town of Collinsport.


****

As the night finally began to turn to day, Maggie made her way home to the Evans' family cottage. She stepped up to her front door and heard the  howl of a beast somewhere in the distance. She turned and looked over her shoulder and saw just an empty street behind her, yet the howl, still chilled her blood.

She turned her key and made one step onto the front step, suddenly a hand came from behind and covered her mouth while another hand pulled her close at the waist.

"You make one sound, and I swear I'll snap your neck. Go inside." The voice said.

Maggie nodded in agreement and pushed the door open. She recognized the voice. She knew exactly who it was. It was her ex husband Thatcher, finally meeting her face to face after all these years.

The two ex's went into the house. Maggie, still muzzled by Thatcher's hand, turned on the lights and Thatcher pushed Maggie then let go of her.  He closed the door behind him turned around.

They were now face to face.

"What took you so long. I've been in town for years. I guess you've lost your touch." Maggie said teasing him wickedly.

"Oh have I? I don't make it habit looking for dead people. You're dead aren't you? At least thats what everyone's been telling me for the past 30 years." Thatcher said coming close to Maggie who backed away slowly leading her to back up into one of her father's paintings on an isle.

"What do you want?" Maggie asked feeling trapped.

"You. My kids. Everything you took from me. You took everything from me and I want it back." Thatcher demanded.

"You don't deserve those beautiful kids, they've thrived without you. Do you hear me? They've thrived. Everything you ever did was for you, you didn't care about them ever, and you know it. The best thing I did was give those kids to Ezrabette and make sure you never had any conta--" Maggie said as Thatcher interrupted.

"You are crazy. They said you were, and at first I  didn't believe those nurses over at Windcliff, I didn't I can honestly say I didn't. But you know what, you are. It makes me kind of laugh. When we first met you told me all these things about your past and all these crazy Collins family horror stories that you were involved in. I thought you just liked to make up some fun stories but no....you're insane. You're really insane. I should just have you put away again." Thatcher said infuriating Maggie.

"If you only suffered half the things I  suffered in my past, you would't be saying that." Maggie answered back as she slowly moved around the room to a where a desk was.

Thatcher followed.

"Is that so?" Thatcher asked getting closer to her again.

Maggie was backed up against the desk. A desk that she knew well. As she faced Thatcher her hands felt around the surface of the desk behind her looking for something she knew was there. A pen. A a few bits of paper work, then the answer. A letter opener.

Maggie grabbed the handle of the letter opener and swung it around pointing it at Thatcher.

"And what are you going to do? Slit my throat? Go ahead. Kill me. See what happens." Thatcher said walking closer to Maggie.

"You're evil. Pure evil. The things you've done ....you deserve only pain and suffering just like you did to me." Maggie said still pointing the letter opener at Thatcher.

Thatcher moved closer and closer. The deep purple sky peeked through the large window behind Maggie and on the other side of the desk. The bushes outside that window shook taking Thatcher's attention off of Maggie.

Maggie swung the letter opener and it sliced Thatcher across the cheek.

"You bitch." He slurred instantly putting his hand to his bloody face wound.

He pulled his right hand back towards his ear, Maggie braced for the impact of the back of his hand and as he his large chest took a deep breath and was about to swing down the werewolf Sebastian crashed though the window from behind knocking Maggie down to the ground.

The wolf landed on Thatcher tearing at his flesh. Maggie screamed and backed away from the beast. She crawled to the other side of the room and hid her eyes from the bloody scene.

The werewolf was not just any werewolf of course, it was Sebastian devouring his own abusive father Thatcher.

Maggie stayed on the floor behind the sofa shaking in fear. She covered her ears to muffle the sounds of Thatcher being torn apart.

Then there was silence.

The wolf walked around the sofa and found Maggie in the fetal position. She opened her eyes and looked at the wolf in front of her.

He did not strike at her and when their eyes met, she could sense something calming, something warm. It was almost like she had seen those eyes before, like they had looked at her lovingly at one point. But of course they had, they were the eyes of her very own son Sebastian.

He sniffed at her. She looked at him. Their eyes still connected. He howled another murderous howl. Maggie reached out to touch his face but he leaped off like a flash to escape the rising sun. He jumped out of the window he broke leaving Maggie on the floor frozen in her emotions.

Sobbing and terrified of what just happened she made her way over to the phone and dialed.

****

As the morning sun began to warm the frosty night over, the red and blue lights flashed at the docks. Out of a police car ca me Detective Loomis McGovern and Detective Kat Banning-Collins. 

The crime scene tape was everywhere. Three bodies were being looked over by investigators.

"What we have here?" Loomis asked the other police.

"Looks like the same thing got these guys as the guy up on the Collins estate lawn." The cop said.

Loomis looked over at Kat. She looked back uncomfortably. 

Then his cell phone rang.

"McGovern." Loomis said answering the phone. His face turning pale in the dawn light.

"What is it?" Kat asked sipping from  her early morning coffee.

"You sure?" Loomis asked the caller. "Yes, she's here with me." He said again.

"What is it?" Kat asked again as Loomis hung up his call.

"Looks like whatever got these guys and the guy on your lawn got someone else. but Kat I need you to say calm." Loomis said.

"Why? What's happened?" Kat asked, the fear in her eyes beginning to show.

"It's your dad Kat. Your dad's been killed." 

The morning sun peeked through the clouds and warmed Kat's chilly face then a single tear fell from her eye as the red and blue flashing lights of the police cars shined on her face. 



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 been 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 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.