20 years ago
500K13 ran through the mountain terrain with one ear trained toward the banging of clanging of Eric’s truck coming up the mountain and one ear on the rustling and growling she could hear miles ahead of her. She had been following since he left his friend’s house ten minutes before, tracking him from a safe distance, performing her primary function to protect, as well as her secondary function which was to remain unseen.
She was to watch him from the shadows, protect him with her very life if necessary. It was what she had been made to do. It was what she had been doing since the day they brought him home from the hospital wrapped in a tiny blue blanket sixteen years ago. Tonight she had made a fatal error in judgement, letting her emotion get the better of her.
Watching from the woods outside his girlfriend’s house she had seen them tangled together working their way toward fucking, not there yet, still taking slow tongue twisting runs at it before backing down, panting and wild eyed. She could tell that before too long they would not pull back, that soon the deep kissing and heavy petting would take Eric and the girl all the way to where they were trying so hard to get to.
Her hands had clenched at the sight and the knowledge of the inevitable adventure before them. One that she could only endure from the shadows at his side as she kept her covenant. It was not supposed to bother her. This was not her function, but she was locked in for the ride.
Eric Northman was tall for a sixteen, nearly seventeen year old boy. Graced with blond hair, blue eyes and a smile that held her captive whenever she saw him bestow it on those around him. Did they know, she sometimes wondered, that his smile was a gift, or did they just take it for granted like they did every other perfection they encountered in this world?
500K13 was sure that it was every bit the gift that sunny care free days were, but like those care free days his smile was never for her. She watched the boy place his large hand on the girl’s breast evoking a moan of pleasure from her that made 500K13 feel envy strike at the heart of her.
Unable to stem the tide of emotions she had walked away for the first time, ever, leaving him alone and unguarded. She had been broken from her wandering reverie through the woods when she heard his truck start, her head coming up sharply, and her heart beat accelerating from the adrenaline flooding her body.
Performing quick calculations in her mind, glancing at the stars to confirm her position she had turned away from the sound and started running toward the mountain that had been at her back. If she moved fast enough she could reach the top, cross down and catch him on the winding mountain road to follow him home through the dark. Her quick thinking had eased her tension as she moved listening to him as he followed the road the long way around.
It had been a good plan until she had sensed the werewolves between her and the boy. There were three of them, in wolf form waiting for him on the road where she planned to catch up and follow. Now she had to get there before he did, because she knew they too were waiting to rendezvous with boy whose eyes stole their color from the sky itself.
Self-recriminations filled her mind again. Protect! You have failed to protect! Not yet, her heart told her mind and she increased her speed pushing herself to her very limits. Extending her senses she knew the leader was ahead of the other two wolves. She also knew that they had planned to stop her and allow their leader time to take out the boy. Not slowing she came in at a blur, hands lighting up with demon fire. Firing a bolt at the wolf loping toward her on the right, hitting him head on and knocking him back she turned to face the one on the left. He leaped toward her, teeth and claws flashing as he pinned her with his massive body.
He ripped at her sides, she felt the blood run down just before she felt the tingle of healing start. Grunting with the effort she flipped them over on the ground taking the top of his muzzle in one hand the bottom in the other she broke his jaws, and then ripped them apart feeling the body go limp under her immediately.
The first one was back now fur still smoking from her fire bolt. He was circling her, working up his nerve to charge her again. She dropped down on all fours and looked into his eyes. Telepathically she drilled into his mind seeking information and control.
Get the fuck out of my head!
She pressed deeper. There were only three of them, on a mission that even their master the Dark Fae King did not know about. Good. They were hoping to kill Eric and regain their packs honor for some sin the King was angry about. Warlow had not sanctioned this kill! She could handle the last easily if she got there in time. She pressed deeper, why hadn’t Warlow sanctioned this action? She saw it then, him with his Council whispering in the shadows of the wolf’s mind. Dread filled her.
He’s got another plan!
The wolf howled as she shredded his mind to find out what it was. He dropped to the ground seizing, reduced to a mindless nothing from her violent invasion. She was moving before he hit the ground. She stopped on the edge of cover and watched the wolf stare into Eric’s headlights. She hesitated. If the wolf did not attack she should remain under cover of the trees.
What the fuck is that? She heard Eric think a bare moment before the scent of his fear met her on the cool night breeze. It looks like a werewolf! He fumbled with the gears of the truck and then sped away as fast he could in the night when the wolf crossed the road and slipped into the trees planning to take him a little further down the road.
500K13 moved faster than she had ever moved before, pulling all the power and magic out of her genetically engineered DNA. She was the best of demon, fae, were, shifter, vampire and human combined into a single form by science and magic. All of their strengths and almost none of their weaknesses. A marvel of engineering from the year 2065 and sent back to make sure that Eric stayed alive.
As soon as the truck passed 500K13 blurred across the road and descended on the wolf with her eyes glowing, her hands blazing and her fangs down. The wolf tried to fight and she let him for a few minutes, enjoying the release of her anger as she pummeled and ripped at him.
The Dark King will snap you like a twig! He snarled into her mind. She growled and punched him a few more times as she rifled through his mind looking for more information about Warlow’s real plans for Eric. There was nothing there. Grunting her rage, she ended her self-indulgence and ripped his throat out with her teeth. Hot blood spurted down her front as she took a few deep gulps wincing slightly at the taste. Were blood was always bitter to her. She dropped the body and moved again to follow the truck through the night.
She sat on tree limb outside Eric’s window in the form of a snowy white owl watching him get ready for bed. She felt relief at seeing he had made it home safely. She could even hear that he was convincing his sleepy mind that it had all been something he imagined. Soon his thoughts turned back to his girlfriend and what they had almost done tonight at her house.
She became lost in the images of his mind, letting him sweep her in, letting it be her he was imagining touching with his large gentle hands. She heard him with her mind and her ears when he sighed, his breath speeding up as he caressed himself. Envy cut her again, but she made herself stay and wait until he was asleep, trying to pretend that she didn’t care the whole time wondering why they had engineered such a flaw into her being. Feeling anything was a liability. Feeling this was crippling!
She could not protect him if all she could think of was how much she wanted to be that girl. These feelings triggered her anger unleashing all the rage that was hiding inside her. None of the species that made up her form were known for being even tempered. In fact, most were hot blooded driven by desire and emotion.
“You’re going to feel things,” a voice had told her in the dark. It was her first memory in the lab where she had been made. “You will feel them more deeply and more exquisitely than any being in history ever has. At first it will seem like a liability but if you can find a way to embrace it, then it will make you stronger than you can imagine. You will be able to do anything, my little 500K13.”
Shaking off the memory she checked Eric again, and then the wards she had placed around his house to keep him safe at night. He was invisible when he was inside them. Then she flew off to handle getting rid of the bodies she had left in the woods beside the road.
Present Day-3 weeks after the attack at WKDED
“I don’t know what’s going on with you, but you gots to get a grip, Eric!” Lafayette looked at him with concern over a plate of eggs, holding his coffee cup in both hands, elbows resting on the table. “In the last few weeks you have been saying and doing some strange things, my friend.” Eric dropped his gaze to the table. He knew Lafayette was right. Tonight had been the tipping point. He rubbed the back of his neck and blew out a long sigh.
“I know. I know, but something happened to me and it’s making me crazy to not remember what it was!”
“Well, tell me about it, what do you think happened?” Eric clenched his fists in frustration, shaking his head.
“I don’t know! That’s just it. It feels like something was taken away from me, something that I need back but I don’t know what it is or how to find it!” Lafayette set the cup down and looked at his friend concern in his eyes.
“I can’t imagine how that must feel, but you can’t keep asking people night after night if they know anything about what happened. You can’t keep asking them why she saved you, when you don’t even know who she is or what she saved you from. It makes you sound…crazy, Eric.” He chuckled.
“I could live with sounding crazy if it got me what I needed.” He looked at Lafayette turning serious. “I know in my bones it has something to do with the security guard that has been missing from WKDED since that night. Is there any word on what happened to him?”
“No, he just disappeared. The cameras outside the station show he was at his post and then he was gone. The police called me earlier this week to question me about his known associates and stuff. I could tell they are as clueless as we are.”
“They called me, too and I agree they have no leads. It probably frustrates me more than them at this point.”
“Look, I know you wouldn’t hurt anyone, but if you keep going on about missing time and no alibi it is possible that they will think you were involved in his disappearance.” Eric raised a brow. Fuck, he hadn’t thought of that. The last thing he needed on top of going crazy was being a suspect in the missing guard’s disappearance.
He was still thinking over how to get his shit back together and let this go when he noticed two tall broad guys come into the diner. Something about them made the hair stand up on the back of his neck and once again he was back in the truck on that mountain road looking at something that was just…wrong. They were dressed in jeans and military boots with long black trench coats. They felt like trouble.
Lafayette followed his gaze and made a small sound of appreciation. Turning back to Eric he licked his lips and waggled his eyebrows. “Nothing like little candy in the morning,” he said, starting to rise. Eric grabbed his hand and pulled him back down.
“No, something’s not right with those guys.”
“I know!” Lafayette assured him patting his hand. “They needs me between them to make one of those reverse Oreos I love so much!” Eric felt a small smile curve his lips at Lafayette’s flirtatious tones. His friend was into dudes and he supposed they were attractive, but at the same time there was something about them that made him feel sure that nothing good would come from his friend making an introduction.
“Wait,” Eric said quietly, sure that something big was about to happen. Something that would change things for him forever. It was the scariest thing he had ever felt, but it also excited him. Just then the door opened again and a blond woman walked in. Eric felt his brain jitter. He knew her. He didn’t know her.
Why did she save me?
She had a long coat on as well, hers beige while the men wore black. She kept her eyes on them moving toward Eric’s booth. She grabbed his arm pulling him to his feet never slowing down. From the corner of his eye he saw the men turn in unison, coats sweeping back to reveal large guns that flipped up in perfect sync to aim at where he had been sitting and Lafayette still was. Her hand was cutting into his arm and she had pulled him all of three steps before he dug his heels in. “Save my friend,” he said leaning down to her.
Fire flashed in her eyes and disbelief flitted over her face. Then she nodded and turned back extending her hand out. The men started firing then, Lafayette screamed and grabbed his head sure it was about to explode, but it didn’t.
Instead, Eric saw the rain of bullets stopped by some invisible force field, falling to the floor before they reached him. “Come with me if you want to live,” she said to Lafayette her hand still extended toward him. The gunmen shifted toward the sound of her voice, their lips moving but their words too quiet to catch. Something like a mist came from them toward the force field that was protecting them from the bullets raining down.
“NOW!” she screamed, pushing Lafayette into action. He scrambled to his feet grabbing her hand, she turned him to stand beside Eric, her back to the assailants now. The mist had gotten through the invisible barrier and was circling around her and he thought he saw her wince. Then everything went upside down and a light so bright it blinded him appeared around them. The sound of bullets faded away and though he could see nothing he knew they were no longer in the diner.
A/N I know, I know, but I always, always really wanted to say, “Come with me if you want to live.” Forgive me, I couldn’t resist.