Book cover of “The Familiar Strangers“ by ChoJoyce

The Familiar Strangers

  • Genre: Romance
  • Status: Completed
  • Language: English
  • Author: ChoJoyce
“Your blood tastes so good,” he told her. Laura pushed him over and sat on top of him. “Now, it’s my turn,” she said. Laura Hall has been having nightmares. Scary, terrifying ones about being attacked by vampires. But what she doesn’t know is that if someone dreams about vampires, those vampires may be looking for them. For better or for worse. 

Chapter 1

The cool winter breeze sends shivers down her spine as Laura Hall sits beside her window, watching the snowflakes drop on the ground. She watched everything turn white and the beauty of those fluffy white balls just made the whole world feel like they were in a huge gigantic freezer. A knock was heard on the door, but before she could say anything, the door flashed open as her mom-Madeline entered the room, wearing a long blue coat and a black beanie on her dark blonde hair. Her amber eyes were trapped in her recommended glasses. It’s hard for her to see anything without her glasses on.

Madeline looked at Laura’s room, wondering why the room felt even colder than the outside. Then her eyes caught the fireplace and saw that the light wasn’t lit.

“For heaven’s sake, Laura, heat your room a little,” she said as she started the fire at the fireplace. Laura just sat there staring out the window.

After she was done fixing the fire, she walked up to me, sat next to me, and held my cold hands, trying to keep them warm by rubbing them together with her palms.

“Couldn’t get any sleep?” she asked as she nodded her head, but her stare did not leave the window. “The same nightmares?” Her mom asked but she just sat there. Then finally, as her mom’s voice pulled her to reality, she focused her attention on her mother’s face. Her mom’s face showed a lot of worries.

“Tell me about it.” She said, but Laura shook her head. “Is it that scary?” She asked again, but Laura couldn’t say anything. Laura wished she could tell her about the dream at least to ease her mom’s worry a little.

“Where’s everyone?” Laura finally spoke up, her voice sounding a little coarse.

“It’s midnight, Laura. They are in bed,” her mom said as she nodded. Laura looked at the clock and saw it was midnight. She had no idea she had been up for that long.

“I should get some sleep now,” Laura said, walking up to her bed. “I’m fine mom.” She gave her mother a reassuring smile. “It’s late like you said, you should get some sleep too.”

Her mom looked at her, trying to figure out if she was faking it or not but one thing Laura was good at was pretending. She should be an actress or something relating to that. Madeline thought to herself.

“Are you sure you’ll be okay?” she asked. Laura laid down on her bed and pulled the bed cover closer to her chest.

“I’m okay now that the fireplace is on,” she told her mom, smiling and Madeline returned the smile to her daughter.

“You could have just done it yourself or asked Ashley to do it,” Mom said, laughing.

“Ashley? Seriously mom...of all the people you could think of...It’s Ashley?” Laura said laughing. Her mind suddenly drifted to her younger sister Ashley. Ashley is 7 years old, but that girl is a little menace. She is this curious kid who goes around trying out anything and everything until she finally gets what she wants or finds out whatever she wants. Asking Ashley to come to help me with the fire is like giving ice cream to a child. No way would she even suggest that.

“Thanks, mom,” Laura told her just to reassure her that she was okay and she’ll be fine, even though she was not even sure about that.

“I love you, sweetheart,” Madeline told her as she came to peck her forehead. “Let me know if you need anything, okay?”.

“I will.” And with that, she left her room but not without looking at her for one last time. Moms and their weird way of knowing their children. You can’t seem to lie to them because trust me, they will do everything to find out that you’re lying. Some might even become detectives.

Laura sighed. These past few days have been hell for her. Here she is, alone in her room, and she can’t even seem to get any sleep. She’s scared to even close her eyes because she can’t imagine what she will see again. The last time she slept, when she woke up, she saw everyone - her dad, her mom, and Ashley around her with their sleepy eyes revealing that they were disturbed. Laura asked them what was wrong and they told her they heard her shout, and that was why they rushed in. Ashley asked her if she had a bad dream but she didn’t seem to remember anything. She didn’t even seem to remember screaming. Ever since then, it’s been hard for her to get any sleep even though she wants to.

“Let’s just hope nothing happens,” she said to herself as she closed her eyes, and surprisingly, the sleep took her by surprise.

***

Somewhere in the deep dark forest, Evan Mcgraw has been summoned by groups of other people like him.

“What took you so long?” Emerald said. Emerald is the second in command of the vampire squid. To differentiate themselves from other vampires, they call themselves the “Goodwine.” Meaning ‘they are good but suck blood, just about any kind of blood.’ The question is, “are there really good vampires”?

“I had trouble getting here,” Evan said as his green eyes turned back to normal brown from using his speed drive. Every time they use their powers, their eyes turn green, and when they are thirsty for blood, their eyes change to red.

“Really? Another excuse for wanting to skip tonight’s meeting,” a voice said as the team laughed.

“Shut the hell Adam,” Evan said. “You should know when I’m telling the truth and when I’m not by now.” He added. That made Adam quiet. It showed that he hasn’t been practicing his powers as he ought to and while he should be improving, he’s stuck at a point.

“So what happened?” Emerald asked as Evan sighed.

“I caught a lady staring outside the window.” Evan started and the whole team looked at him, confused. How does a lady staring outside ‘her’ window affect the reason he should be thirty minutes earlier?

“So?” Emerald asked not understanding the reason.

“She was staring straight over here. I couldn’t pass her without her noticing a movement in the trees even if I used my speed. I had to wait till she was done.”

Everyone nodded. It’s a rule that no one must be found out, no matter what. Everybody needs to be careful and not get caught, not even at the slightest chance.

“Glad you’re here anyway. The commander told me to give this to you”. Emerald handed him a sheet of paper.

“What’s this?” Evan collected the paper while looking at Emerald.

Emerald shrugged. “It was meant for you.”

Evan opened the paper and there, the lady he saw staring out the window was the one in the paper right in front of him. The shock was so great that the paper fell from his hand.

Emerald picked up the paper and stared at Evan weirdly.

“Are you okay?” She asked. It took a while before he recovered from the shock.

“What does the boss want me to do to her?” He asked, staring at Emerald, hoping it was not what he thought it was.

“He wants you to protect her.” That even shocked him more. He wasn’t expecting that.

“Protect her?” Adam asked because it was a shock to him too. Emerald nodded.

“Well, did they say why?”

“I asked but they said she’s going to be useful or something like that.”

Something didn’t seem right, and everyone knew it. When a picture of a person is given to them, it’s always that the person is a threat and perhaps another vampire that needs to be executed but for them wanting to protect this girl is still a surprise and a big one.

“I guess we’ll find out.” Evan said as he folded his papers, and the team left each other and went to their various homes.

The Goodwine are vampires that have been blessed with the enormous gift of walking under sunlight. Some vampires don’t have that. Some do, but no one knows their whereabouts.

It all happened when the first vampires drank the blood of an angel. Those present at that place where sunlight screened while the others who didn’t get to enjoy that remained the vampires that walked at night. Fortunately, Evan, Adam, Emerald, and a few others had parents that were sunlight screened.

The question remains, why is Evan asked to protect Laura and not kill her? Is she a threat? And if she isn’t, why does she need protection, not from anyone else but a vampire? Could there be any reason? Or is it them trying to live up to their name as the ‘Goodwine?’

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