Categories > Original > Drama > Karin: Enter the D'Amphile

Enter the Clan

by paladin313 0 reviews

A new friend joins the group, and Jean-Claude aptly names them.

Category: Drama - Rating: R - Genres: Drama - Warnings: [V] - Published: 2009-05-10 - Updated: 2009-05-10 - 6519 words - Complete

Chapter XXII

He awoke the next morning, and sat down to breakfast with Karin and Kenta, (who, with Fumio, were being temporarily lodged in the Marker residence due to the present crisis,) and he was looking for the right words to say to Karin. How do you go about telling someone that something you once thought was a myth turns out to be true in rare cases? How do you tell them that the vampire you wish them to meet is an actual undead? It seemed to Jean-Claude that Chiyuki was not looking for that blood for fertility as much as she was hoping it would remove, at least, the undead status from her, even if she were to remain a vampire. Could her blood be the key? He decided to wait until lunch and get the two of them isolated before laying this on them. He had to figure out just what to say, and then how to lay it on them. He knew that, if he botched it, and they got scared, or paranoid, Chiyuki would never trust him again. This was a delicate situation, and deserved to be handled with kid gloves. As they left the house for school, (Jean-Claude unmistakable for his tan skin, size, and owl-eye sunglasses,) he was lost in thought. Karin finally asked, “Why are you so quiet? Normally, you want to gnaw our ears off!”

“Sorry, sis,” he said, “There's some heavy things I am chewing on.”

While this was going on, Chiyuki was watching from a building far away, her uncanny hearing gave her the ability to know exactly what was being said without her being sensed in return. One of the few good things about being undead, was that her senses where 10 times stronger then normal vampires and age just helped to improve that. Her speed had done nothing but gotten faster as well. If she really wanted to, she could be on the other side of the word within thirty minutes or so. She was very tempted just to jump down there and harass Karin for the blood, knock out Kenta and Jean-Claude and get Karin to bite her, but she could sense the delicately that the Dhampir was using so she waited impatiently.

As they sat at lunch, Jean-Claude was again applying the sunscreen as he was wont to do, and he said, “Karin, what if I were to tell you that I discovered that there may be some truth to vampires making other vampires?”

She looked at him, mouth agape, and a look of shock on her face, saying, “Hold on, I thought that was a myth? We aren't undead!”

“We may not be, but I met one last night,” he added, “she was quite powerful too! No telling how long she has been crawling around.”

“But...but, how come this is the first I've heard this?” asked Karin, not liking where this was going.

“Apparently,” answered Jean-Claude, “this is something that has been very frowned upon and forbidden amongst the vampires, depending on where one is and how they set the rules. I can see how it could be that they would ban it. You have to think that this might be part of the reasons why humans can't deal with us—present company excepted, Kenta.”

He acknowledged that it was not a slight, and Jean-Claude continued, “These were the things that could cause wholesale panic and mass hunts in more primative and naive societies. If there is to be peace, those kinds of things have to be forbidden.”

Karin looked at Kenta, and said, “Could I cause that to Kenta?”

“I don't think so,” said Jean-Claude, “Because, if anything of the legends is true, the human must be nearly drained of blood, and then drink the blood of the vampire. That causes the undead condition, and the need for blood. You don't drink, you give, and that formula could never happen with you. You can make g'huls, and quite powerful ones, considering the amount in an infusion. I am not sure if we dhampirs, or d'amphiles, if you prefer the French, can do this, but a pure blood vampire that has enough capacity to drink nearly 13 pints of blood could do it.”

“Why are you telling me all this?” she asked.

“There is a possibility that your blood might be able to cure the undead condition,” he said, “and it was last night's encounter that got me thinking about it.”

“So, who did you meet,” asked Kenta.

“I met an undead vampire who was looking for your help in becoming fertile like any other vampire. I mean, think about it, in her condition, she is as sterile as I am, because her body is essentially dead. The blood keeps it from rotting away. However, if your blood can bring a reproductive area to life, what could it do for the rest of the body? What I am thinking is this: if you help her, you may even help to restore her to mortality, or, at least, make her like any other vampire, though still quite powerful.”

“Then, where do I come into play?” she asked, now nervous.

“She's coming by Julian's tonight,” he said, “and she's going to meet the ‘crew’ so to speak. In addition to that, I am going to ask Wiener if he knows anything about this, or if his grandfather has mentioned anything. She is all alone, and I am sure that having friends would be a good thing for her, as it has been for us.”

“Do you think daddy should know?” she then asked.

“That's why I wanted you to meet her first,” he said, “That way, if she is trustworthy, you can soften the blow to your father, and he would be more than likely to help.”

He sat quiet for a moment or two, and then said, “You know, I look at our posse, and I wonder if we represent the future?”

“Lost me again,” said Kenta.

“I mean, we're all a living example of how it could work, where others think it could not,” he said, “I mean, if our motley crew can get along, is there hope?”

He then picked up his 12-string, and began to sing Dylan’s The Times They Are a Changin’, wondering if those words carried new meaning for the situation they were all in. However, the conversation was not unobserved, nor was it unheard by outside ears. Chiyuki was listening intently, hoping for something of which she could act. Chiyuki listened to his words carefully, from what she heard, and from what she gathered the night before, Henry wasn't the one she should fear, it was the oldest—Elda Makka. She listened as things continued. “By the way,” asked Jean-Claude, “Is grandmamma asleep right now?”

“After your little lecture, she said she wanted to think about it for a while,” she said, “That could be for a day, it could be for decades. It all depends.”

He thought for a few moments, and he understood she had been shook a bit by the changes in the world, even more so since she came home on the night Jean-Claude proposed to Yuriya. Considering the situation, he said, “Let's hope she chews on it long and hard, because, after what Yuriya told me about her first encounter with her, and how she almost got me so mad that night I told that story, (after I had killed those renegades who were trying to get you and kill everyone else,) and I almost ripped her in two, I don't know how she would react. Things have been moving faster than she wants right now. She has seen that, like most vampires, the world has passed her by because of wanting to ignore the mortal world. Much has changed, but they have not. They still nurse old grudges, and that is not good. You do that and you destroy yourself. With her age and wisdom, her knowledge of the past, she could do much to fix things that are bad. What a waste!”

Karin loved her, but she had to concede the point. However, Chiyuki flinched in fear at Jean-Claude’s description of Elda Makka. Vampires like her had been a taboo forever, so Elda would definitely hate and try to kill her. Jean-Claude then said, “Well, keep me abreast of what she is up to, because if we can keep her asleep, or have Victor keep her occupied, then we may be able to fix the problem far before she gets wise to things. Despite the fact that she has softened to a few mortals, she is quite reactionary, from what you and Henry have told me. I mean, she is the kind to say, ‘Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead,’ and dive in where angels fear to tread! Of course that gets her in to more trouble than for which she cares, but, give me time: I think we can reeducate her, you know, modernize her to cope with the world as it is..., or as it could be.”

“Still got that dream, don't you?” asked Karin.

“Gets me up in the morning!” he said, and they prepared to return to class. However, Chiyuki had other ideas.

Faster than a blink, Chiyuki was at the school, and looking over the scene. Never one for patience, she was looking to introduce herself in her own way. She jumped down and landed in front of Jean-Claude gracefully and fast, nearly scaring the snot out of Karin and Kenta. As the other two gathered themselves, all Jean-Claude could do at that moment was think, “How, in the name of common sense, is she not being fried to a crisp. Even I need to wear these glasses and sun block!”

After a few stunned moments of looking like a codfish, all he could choke out was, “Getting impatient?”

“Very much so: patience has never been a strong quality for me,” she said. She then turned to Kenta, and said, “He hates somebody.”

Kenta stood there, still unable to speak, considering how things were going, and this strange, well, he had to guess, woman, popped up out of nowhere, and now accused him of something of which Jean-Claude was completely ignorant. Jean-Claude was at a loss himself for that statement, considering that he knew of nothing that would justify that statement. Jean-Claude then said, “One, how come you are not a pile of ash right now, and two, what in the name of common sense are you talking about!”

“It is because I am more like Karin then a regular vampire, and my blood preference is hatred and Glare-san, (referring to Kenta’s reaction,) has a lot of hatred,” she said.

Karin felt she needed to say something, but she was at a loss herself, and said, “Um...hey, everyone’s got something or another they don’t like. I mean, I don’t like math...” still not sure she was saying the right thing. She was still trying to cope with the world as it was, and where it was going, and now she had this wrinkle. She was feebly trying to smooth things over, but she didn’t know if she was succeeding. Jean-Claude, to try to keep her from latching onto someone in broad daylight, (and before the rest of the school,) tried to stall her, and probed, “And just who or what does he hate?”

Chiyuki closed her eyes, concentrated on Kenta’s mind, and said, “A family member.”

That shocked Kenta into a bit of sensibility, and he wondered why it was that he still bore a grudge. He thought he had smoothed things over between himself and his father. He was trying to get on with it, but he wondered why this still lingered in him. “Wanna share with us something, Kenta?” said Jean-Claude.

However, with what Karin was now detecting between Kenta and Chiyuki, she began to feel a stirring in her. She was now standing behind her, waving to the both of them frantically to cut off the conversation. Both Kenta and Jean-Claude thought, “Oh no!”

Jean-Claude pulled him close, and said, “Help her, I'll stall her.”

Then, he remembered at that instant how good her hearing was, and then he began to wonder if he was now botching the whole thing! Chiyuki then said, (and oddly, with a smile on her face,) “His grandma is the one he hates,” and then continued with a smirk, “and I have no intentions of taking from him.”

Now Kenta was stirred. Yes, that was an unresolved factor in his life. He remembered how cruel she had been to him and his mother. Anger did rise a bit, but also unhappiness; and now Karin was wide-eyed, franticly trying to hint to Kenta that she needed help. Kenta caught the hint, saying, “Why did you make me remember that? Oh, Karin, do we have time?”

She grabbed his wrist, saying, “I'll cover for you, say you had sunstroke or something, and get you to the infirmary: just help!”

Jean-Claude looked at Chiyuki, and said, “What are you doing? There are better ways than this!” thinking that he knew what her strategy was.

“What do you mean?” she asked innocently, truly not sure what Jean-Claude was saying.

He leaned in close and whispered, “Unhappiness is her blood preference, and you just stirred it up in Kenta, and stirred up her blood! If you wanted her blood, we could have...” but as he was saying that, Kenta and Karin had not gotten far, and it happened. They were trying to find somewhere discreet, but they did not make it. Everyone in the blast radius was covered in blood. “Too late,” said Jean-Claude, this being the first time he had seen it. Maki jumped up and said, “Again? You were doing so well!”

She went over, and started to help Kenta get her to the nurse’s office. Jean-Claude turned an aggravated look to her, and said, “Smooth move, Exlax!”

Yet, back at the house, someone else was interested in the scene. One of her bats had awoken her, and she was now watching the scene. Normally, she would have instantly blamed Kenta, but she saw the stranger, and Anjou said, “If you hurt my sister, you shall pay dearly.”

However, she contented herself with holding her peace, hoping rather that her two big brothers could handle it before it came to a head. She would lose some sleep, but she was going to keep an eye on things. However, Chiyuki, knowing the scent of bats, looked up on a raised level of the rooftop lunch area where they had dined, and saw three wooden structures, about two inches wide, and rather long, with guano troughs underneath. Her nose told her that they were filled with semi-hibernating bats, and one of them was sticking its head out, watching the scene. With her own abilities, she was able to sense a pair of vampire eyes watching her. Concentrating, she was able to detect the youngest Marker watching the scene. Chiyuki stared at Anjou, and then smirked as she said, “What a lucky child,” before dashing away from the mad scene she had just made. Jean-Claude was a bit aggravated at first, but then remembered that she may not have had much dealing with the outside world, and she was not used to human social graces. At this, Jean-Claude wondered if she would still show up, considering. He hoped that he could smooth things over before she arrived. He went off to clean himself up, and to check on Karin. However, Anjou wondered if she herself should show up at Julian's. The sun would be down by then, and she could catch up with her sister to see if she were okay. She would try to hide in one of the booths, and then see what she could do if things got hot.

Later that night, the gang was together, Kenta and Karin were just getting off their respective shifts, and preparing to join them. Yuriya usually served those tables, to fellowship with them as she worked, hoping to sit by her new husband when she was done. Jean-Claude was finishing up, but also checking his watch and the door, to see if things might have changed. What surprised him was that he saw, out of the corner of his eye, the flash of a black dress, long hair, and a black bow. He had long ago learned not to question how she did her things, or how she found out the things that she did, but he had to know what the deal was. He signaled Yuriya, and said, “Babe, could you make sure you tend to table five? You'll see why when you go there. Just give her what she wants, and give me the tab.”

Outside, someone was making a decision. Chiyuki stared at the restaurant, hoping that she was still invited. She jumped, landed in front of it, and walked in. Jean-Claude adjusted his position to do two things: one, facilitate her sitting down, and two, to ensure Karin does not bolt, that they could take care of business. Karin started to stir, but he said, “She did not know! Okay? She didn’t know. We can explain everything when she gets here. Remember what I said, guys: make her feel welcome!”

“Doing the right thing is always my specialty, helping damsels in distress, aiding the helpless: I Wiener Sinclair, reeducated and reformed vampire hunter will always be there to...”

This was followed by his squealing as Maki grabbed his ear and yanked him back down, saying, “Okay, Indy, we get the point! Sheesh!”

Jean-Claude looked over to her and tilted his head, as if to indicate, “Come here,” he not knowing another set of eyes stared that riveting stare of which she was capable as Chiyuki passed.

Chiyuki nodded, the looked apologetically at Karin and Kenta. She walked forward slowly, feeling the eyes of Anjou on her. As she sat down, Yuriya dutifully came over and asked what she wanted to order, and wondered why the poor girl looked so pale, (as he had not had chance to tell her anything yet.) Chiyuki shook her head. “I’m fine, really, just a glass of wine would be good,” she said smiling.

Yuriya looked at her funny. She looked right on the line for alcohol, and she did have the maturity, so she let it go, saying, “Uh...Okay, red or white?”

She looked over her at Jean-Claude, and he mouthed the word, “Later.”

“Red wine,” she said, trying to drop a hint.

Yuriya went to fetch it, not knowing what she was hinting, while Jean-Claude explained, “What we are looking at is this: the next time your blood...” trying to get down to business, but Maki said, with a big smile on her face, “It’s so good to meet you! I'm Maki!”

Jean-Claude just put his hands in his face and shook his head. “Same here, I am Chiyuki Tanaka,” introducing herself.

Jean-Claude sighed, and then said, “So, as I was saying...” but he was again interrupted, as Wiener said, “Oh, damsel of worry! What angst! I bleed for you, I feel for your plight, I...” and Maki grabbed his ear again, pulled him down more forcefully, and said, “ long winded! Sit down, you!”

Chiyuki giggled cutely at the display, as Yukiko pulled up a chair, with a more subdued Goth punk look than she used to have, whispering, “Wow! Another vampire! Is it true that you were made?”

Jean-Claude started motioning with his hand to keep it down more, not wanting too much attention. However, another set of ears was taking it all in. Chiyuki nodded, and explained, “I was abandoned at creation,” as Neko came to land swiftly on her shoulder. Yukiko looked around, leaned forward, and whispered, “That's horrible! I've read fiction like that, but I never thought I'd see it!”

She then stopped and thought for a moment, and then looked at Jean-Claude, and said, “Wait a minute! I thought you said that didn't happen!”

“It's a new one on me too!” he responded, “and rare, it seems.”

She then stopped and thought for a moment, and said, “My goodness, if they had known that that night, and if they had...” and she stopped herself, thinking about what could have happened. She then said, “Geesh! I owe you guys my life!” now knowing how close to a fate worse than death she really had come. Chiyuki looked at the others curiously, not sure what it was about which Yukiko spoke. “Well, those renegades are gone forever, and they will not harass you anymore,” said Jean-Claude, “But what surprises me is that you still have somewhat of a fascination about our world despite what happened in that Goth club.”

Chiyuki listened carefully, trying to figure things out and storing information she needed to know in her data banks. Yukiko remembered the talk at the club, and the next day, and realized that it may not be something to pursue. However, she was curious. “Let me sit beside her, there’s so much to learn!”

Jean-Claude relented, and switched seats. As he did so, he looked at Chiyuki, and said, “It's a different world. Vampires may have a chance now. As Bob Dylan said, (and he sang,) ‘...for the times they are a changin!’”

Chiyuki nodded and smiled, ready to answer any of Yukiko's questions. “Are you the only one, or are there others?” she asked.

“I am not sure if there are others, I only know of one, and she was killed by the humans,” she said quietly.

“Dude, that sucks!” she said, “This is so Anne Rice!” she then said, with that teen-age enthusiasm. She thought for a moment, and said, “How much is your world like that?”

“Like what?” she asked, frowning.

Jean-Claude had to intervene at this point, and said, “People like Anne Rice and others have actually been making our world, well, for the lack of better terms ‘more acceptable’ to mortals. Take Interview With a Vampire. for example. What I think she wonders is, if the ways vampires are depicted in that are the same here, in real life?”

Yukiko then said, “Yeah, that's kind of what I am aiming at. It almost seems there that you guys aren’t such bad people. Why do they look at you as bad, I mean, that’s not fair! You have feelings too! You're not heartless! LeStat is like that, sort of. I mean, you get lonely, you want people around, (as she pointed to Karin and Kenta,) you like to have fun, go shopping, I mean, what's so wierd about that?”

“Oh that dark and entire world is like an Anne Rice novel in that sense then,” she said smiling.

“If you say 'dark and twisted' in reference to Anne, I would be forced to agree,” answered Jean-Claude, “That girl has an obsession with death and the beyond! I think she's off her rocker!”

Yukiko then said, “Well, I guess all I'm saying is that these guys helped me to love people more. I mean, I already did love people, and I didn’t care about differences. I just wish people could see how cool this all is, and how cool you all are together!”

“My story may take awhile,” she said quietly.

“I’d be interesting in hearing it, as well as sharing my own, but first, Yukiko, what do you have to say about what I asked you?”

“Well, I was in elementary school, and I had a best friend that happened to be an American girl. She had a hard time due to the language barrier, but I helped her learn quickly. At that age, race doesn’t matter—adults have a lot to learn from kids.”

“Hate is learned, not instinctive,” said Jean-Claude, “But do go on.”

She continued, “We became tight friends. We did everything together. Yet, one day, a bunch of older boys saw us hanging out, yelled at me for being with a bakkaru gyjin, and nearly beat her to death. Her parents would not let me see her after that, and she was transferred. I never saw her again. I couldn't understand why they did that, just because she looked different.”

“Sounds to me that this whole vampire thing came up after?” he said.

“I read ‘Interview’ soon after, and I have always felt, ‘If I could be like that, I could protect everyone, and no one would ever have to be scared anymore.’”

Chiyuki nodded, and warned before she started, “I will not filter my story so be wary. A vampire who then turned me into a vampire without realizing it seduced me. He abandoned me and left me for dead, that was when Neko found me and brought me back up to my feet and kept me from falling into insanity. I hunted that vampire down, found out a way for me to become a normal vampire; that was the fountain of Psyche. I fell in love with a regular vampire and we found out I could not have children and was barren. The elders for affiliating with me killed him, then I found another vampire who was like me, and she was killed while protecting me from the Elders. I found out that Karin Makka was the one I searched for and came here. Then I smelt Jean-Claude and you know the rest.”

“Well, here's the short of it,” said Jean-Claude, “My father was an officer in the Marine Corps., and I spent all his time working at night. That's how he met my mother. She was attracted to courage, and he had plenty of that! At first, he was only an occasional feed, and she would come back to him from time to time. However, they began to build a rapport, and he made advances that she turned away. However, this did not last, as her attraction to his courage started to go beyond her blood taste. Soon after, they were dating, and, despite displeasure by the council there, it was allowed. When he retired, they wed, and they moved to Camden-Rockport in Maine. The Council was not too happy with this, and though they begrudgingly allowed what they called a 'temporary fling,' knowing that he could not outlive her, there were still a rash of 'incidents' dealing with them. However, it built to a head when I came along. 'Incidents' began to become 'accidents.' A vampire even tried to kill me in the hospital, disguised as a nurse, the day I was born. She was caught, and vanished soon after. Soon, it became a problem, and they had to hide. Keeping mother fed was a chore because of the low populations around. We had to shift from town to town. They never hid anything from me, figuring that the truth was better than lying to me. We hooked up with my grandfather, also a member of the corps, and we started to live off the land. Eventually, we wound up in the White Mountains, and we built a cabin in the darkest part of the woods, in case mother had to be up during the day. They always taught me to love the individual for who they were, and not what they were, and never to hate. Things were fine for about five years, and then it happened. To make a long story short, the council around there put a death sentence on the three of us, tried to kill my grandfather and I on the road, and got him, followed me, burned down my house, chased us into the woods, got my did, and then mom. They caught me, but if it weren’t for a group of vampires that lived in the woods, isolated from everyone else, that lived off animal blood, (it was not so bad when you get used to it,) and raised me. They took over where my folks left off, and took someone who could have been a raging beast, and turned me into an avenging angel. Let's just say that, before I came here, the vampire population dropped significantly in that area before I came here. Now, I am here to protect, stop some renegades, and settle down. So, here I am!”

Chiyuki chuckled and said quietly, “Sounds like hell.”

“For who, them, or me?” he smiled, with a slightly evil grin.

“Both,” she said shrugging.

“I've learned that the best thing you can do is try to take the lemons one has handed you, and make lemonade,” he said, “It beats being bitter!”

Yukiko, to try to lighten things up, said, “Well, Chiyuki, if you ever need a place, or help, I'm your girl!”

“I’d like to know how you would pull that off,” thought Jean-Claude, when a presence showed up, sitting in his lap with her meal, saying, “Yes, big brother, I wonder the same thing.”

Everyone jumped, and sighed, realizing who this was, and Jean-Claude said, “I said it before, and I'll say it again: you could sneak up on Death and scare him!”

Chiyuki jumped back and landed in the next table over, exclaiming angrily, “Who the hell!”

“You can relax, it's just Anjou, (saying her proper French pronunciation,) she has a problem with being subtle,” said Jean-Claude, “Corn Muffin, why don't you introduce yourself to our new friend.”

“That’s not funny,” she said furrowing her brow and coming to sit back down.

“I have heard the whole conversation,” she said, continuing to eat, and never dropping her deadpan expression, “and I must say, this is a first. You need to be careful, big sister, (referring to Chiyuki,) there are those that would not understand, and would never want you to try to gain from the pistis sophia, right, Big Brother? Know, however, I am not your enemy. Big brother here is a key to our hope, and I would stand in anyone's way of his dream.”

She continued to eat, acting as if nothing was wrong. Chiyuki stared curiously at Anjou and asked, “How old is she?”

“‘She’ just turned 13,” said Anjou, not liking how she was being referred to in the third person while being there, and she continued, “And I have fully awoken. I awoke about a year and a half ago, but I learned much beforehand.”

“And sometimes she's the brains of the outfit,” said Jean-Claude, “She is already very powerful, and acts like my conscience sometimes. She's also my partner, and now band mate, now that I have taught her guitar. She seems even to be getting better than me!”

“You’re only thirteen?” she said unbelievingly to Anjou, “You acted like you are Centuries old.”

She scratched the back of her head, and suddenly did not like the imagery that was coming to her. She screeched, “AND WHAT DO YOU MEAN MATE! YOU’RE ONLY THIRTEEN!”

Everyone in the restaurant turned to look, and Jean-Claude calmed down the crowd, and said, “Shh, calm down! When I said that, it means that she is the member of the musical band of which I am a part. She plays lead guitar, and she is quite a good picker. Everyone thinks she's wearing a set of classical picks, when in fact it's her vamp nails. Of course, no one can tell that in the dark. She's my little sister, in a sense, and not MATE!”

He leaned forward, and said, “If anyone has that title, it’s her,” as he pointed to Yuriya. “Henry just got the paperwork recently; we are essentially man and wife. Henry's having some of the bats build our house on the property.”

Chiyuki sighed, and explained, blushing slightly, “Sorry, I have always hated that about vampire society. It gets me angry faster then anything.”

“I know,” said Jean-Claude, “It does not matter the age. If they are technically adults, they are betrothed and married off, and that is that. I am glad it was not that way with me and Yuriya, or Kenta and Karin here. There is such a thing as love, and I do believe that is what brought this whole crowd together. Bedsides, one, no one would ever have betrothed their daughter to me, and two, I don't think I could accept anyone that young anyway.”

Chiyuki nodded, smiled, and said quietly, “Karin Makka-san, I don't need your blood, because I have nobody, my somebody died a long time ago, but, I was wondering if I could, maybe, just hang out here and join your little posse?”

Karin smiled, and said, “I think there is more to it than that. First, you’re always welcome. Second, Jean-Claude said there could be something else.”

“That's right,” he said, “I was thinking about it, and I do believe that there would be more than just fertility at stake here. For you to be fertile, that means that your undead status needs to be removed. Her blood is a fountain of life, and this could reactivate your body. At the very least, you could be a normal vampire!”

Karin smiled, and said, “When it comes that time of the month again, just call me, and I will see what happens. The worst that can happen is nothing, right?”

“It could also be temporary,” she said quietly, and then asked, “And what good would turning into a real vampire do me, I would sacrifice the sun for what: so I could stand garlic and needed less blood?”

“The way I see it, to be a normal human again is also a possibility,” he said, “And my philosophy is, ‘Some chance is better than none at all.’ Even if temporary, what would you then have lost? You went in knowing that it might not work, so you would not be disappointed at the results.”

Anjou then said, “Besides, the darkness is not so bad, once you get used to it. There is beauty to the night.”

Maki then said, “Hey, sing that ‘Phantom’ song again! That was so cool the last time!”

Before he could react, Anjou was already getting his 12-string, and he began to play The Music of the Night for them. Once again, the whole restaurant applauded. “It's all how you look at it,” he said.

Karin then thought, “You know, you look young enough, why don't you enroll in my school, if you don't want to change. At least you can learn how to cope with people again!”

“Yeah,” said Jean-Claude, “Hockey season is starting soon, and I am going to show Japan how a Canadian-American plays hockey—the real way!”

Chiyuki couldn't believe how easily she was accepted...the real monster humans described as vampires...the undead, and these humans and vampires had accepted her like it was nothing. “I think, I might join the school, though I will warn you I have a temper and am angered easily,” she warned.

“Oh, I have one too,” said Jean-Claude, “I just take it out on my opponents on the ice, remember last night, right”

Anjou then got her little Mona Lisa smile, and said, “I know what it feels like to be alone, and it is worse when it was a time when I was alone in my own house. Big Brother here changed all that. No one should be alone, even you.”

“Especially you, considering,” added Jean-Claude. He then said, “Welcome to the Clan.”

“What do you mean by that,” asked Maki.

“I think I know what he means,” said Yukiko, “and sometimes, it can refer to some kind of vampire group. However, us, well, we are the antithesis of what many think in both the human and vampire world. Talk about flying the proverbial finger at the status quo. Besides, with all our pasts, how could we not be a group?”

“Yeah,” added Karin, “its fun being different when you have a healthy attitude about it, right bro?”

“Dead on, sis,” he said, smiling. Chiyuki nodded, “Well I haven't drunk blood in a while so I'll be back...whenever,” she said while getting up. In a blur, she was gone, walking the streets in search of prey. “Do you think she will be back?” asked Karin.

“I think so,” said Jean-Claude, “I think she just has to do a bit of thinking right now. I think this whole thing blew her mind. I hope she does, because I am now so desperate to help her.”

Anjou then chimed in, saying, “Just watch out for Grandmamma, because we may have to defend her, considering what I heard.”

Jean-Claude nodded his head, remembering the story his, well now essentially, wife had told him when she and Elda had met. “As long as she is asleep, she is safe,” said Jean-Claude, “When she awakens, she is going to have to lay low.”

“There is another pressing problem, big brother,” said Anjou.

“What's that,” said Jean-Claude.

“If the renegades ever figure out how to do what happened to her, there could be far more problems stopping them than you think,” said Anjou, very wisely.

Chiyuki was thinking things over carefully as she tried to sniff out hatred, enough to quench her thirst. Soon enough, she passed a drunkard, raving to himself about how the world had wronged him. Chiyuki walked up to him smiled and pulled him into a dark alley and bit him. When she had her fill and she had erased the drunk's memories, she sat down and thought, thinking it over if she should stay, or if she should go with her original plan and go kill the elders. Meanwhile, after Yuriya got off shift, the newlyweds walked up the hill and saw the new house almost complete. As they went to their room, Jean-Claude asked, “So, what did Julian say when you put in your notice?”

“He wasn’t too happy, knowing that he was losing good help, but he’ll get over it!” she said.

At that, they noticed on the end table some papers, and there were places marked out for them to sign. “I guess this will make it official, eh?” said Jean-Claude.

She just beamed at him as the two of them signed. They were now man and wife for as long as they both lived, and that could be for a long time! She then looked like she had an idea, and went over to the stereo, played Donovan’s version of Catch the Wind, and set it on a loop, saying, “We haven’t had our first official dance yet.”

He smiled and bowed formerly. She curtsied, and they began. It may have been the same song, but they danced for a good twenty minutes, and then Yuriya kicked the door shut. If one were to stand outside, they would have heard Jean-Claude say, “Girl, you’re going to wear me out!”
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