Tue. May 28th, 2024

d..、,.. #MY_BLACK_KNIGHT d..、,..

Happen 57 (L)

Word Count : 4,493

As Produced By SheriffSquinty

Theme: Ambush

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It was a miserable birthday to say the least.

 

 

 

 

 

While the warriors and Eli discussed battle strategies and Rebekah fine-tuned her plan with Raziel, I remained strapped to my seat, scared to move around even after the plane had leveled out. I was not scared of manythings but I couldn’t deny that flying freaked me out. My parents, Maria, and Will tried to distract me but with

little luck. My thoughts revolved around Cain, Gabriel, and the fact that I was

thousands of feet in the air and could die at any moment if the pilot lost control.

We stopped for fuel several times along the way and the descending/ascending just made me nauseous.

Despite the fact that I got several weak, mostly-ironic “Happy Birthdays” from my family and pack members, I was nowhere close to happy and I felt younger and

more vulnerable than ever. The red mark on my neck still stood out against my

pale skin but right now it was hard to act like a Luna. Still I kept my face blank,

joined in nearby conversations, and went over the plan again and again in my head until I knew every facet of it perfectly.

The plane ride took nearly a day. Back in Colorado, it would’ve been around two a.m. when we finally landed in Israel, but they were eight hours ahead of us so it

was nearly afternoon and we still had to travel to Mount Tabor. I grew antsy and

began to fidget in my chair, heart rate increasing in expectation. This was it, Friday the 13th. Ifour plan didn’t succeed, Gabriel and I could both die, or the vampires would be free to go wipe out my species. There was a lot of pressure resting on our shoulders.

As the plane touched down with bumps and jerks, I exhaled with relief when I felt the solid ground beneath us once more. Breathing my first fresh air since we

boarded the cargo plane, I felt completely liberated. As I took in the foreign surroundings I realized we were on an old, partially overgrown runway. Huh.

Didn’t seem like something that would’ve been sanctioned by the local

government. We were definitely not at a major airport, in fact we were in the

middle of nowhere, and I realized what sort of risk Cid was taking in bringing us here unauthorized. I didn’t even have a passport. When the grizzled older man

appeared, I made a point to thank him profusely, all the while wondering what

exactly Raziel owed him for bringing us here; or what Cid owed Raziel. I

wondered if the two had ever partnered before or if Cid was just a ‘friend-of-a- friend’ type of ordeal.

Raziel brought out a crumpled map of the area, his electric blue eyes honing in on Mount Tabor and tracing it south to our current location. Right now we were in a

more rural area but I assumed we would have to skirt cities to reach our destination.

 

 

 

 

 

 

“You all cannot Shift here. There are too many humans between us and Mount Tabor,” Raziel spoke worriedly, still fixated on the map.

“How will we get there in time, then?” My Father asked.

“It’s only a few hours. If we leave now-“

“Let’s go then,” I surprised myself, and everyone else, by cutting the Angel off, “Which direction?”

Raziel glanced at me and I thought I detected a glint of approval in his eyes.

“North. And when we get to the first city, we will try to mostly skirt around it. You all aren’t exactly dressed in the appropriate attire for this region.”

I opened my mouth before closing it again, realizing I hadn’t even thought about it. “When we reach Mount Tabor, by the time we set our plan in motion, I’m afraid it

won’tmatter.” There was a grim set to Raziel’s features and I wasn’t sure why until he spoke again. “I’m sure Cain has found away to make the mountain

conveniently devoid of people.”

My stomach churned at the thought of the innocents Cain could be harming and I

tried to force away the mental image. We set off after Raziel indicated the route we were going to take. My Wolf rubbed against my consciousness, and the desire to

Shift was an unrelenting itch beneath my skin, but I forced myself to remain in

human form. We could still move pretty quickly, but I wanted to take off as fast as I could, crowded cities or not. Still, Raziel had not yet led us astray, and I couldn’t risk the exposure of my species. I attempted to suppress the agitation as we steadily moved north, skirting the busier cities when we could.

Our fevered pace caused sweat to bead on my forehead and trickle down the sides

of my face. It was over eighty degrees and the afternoon sunbathed us in

sweltering heat. I tried to atleast acknowledge my surroundings, because Israel was very different to look at than Colorado, but Gabriel’simage continuously swam to the forefront of my mind and prevented me from really taking in the

scenery.

During the time in which we had no choice but to travel through the towns, we

definitely got some strange looks. No doubt everyone thought we were tourists. I hoped our presence would not stir up trouble because we couldn’t waste time. Our group could definitely take care of ourselves but I didn’t want to harm any humans on the way to Mount Tabor. This wasn’t their battle.

I knew we were nearing the mountain when we skirted around the edge of a city to see the flat land around us steepen slightly into rolling hills dotted with a few trees and bushes. I caught the scent of sheep wafting from a distance, and small animals

 

 

 

 

 

scurried through the brush nearby. Because the area around us was mostly flat, we were able to see Mount Tabor from quite a distance, jutting into the sky amidst the surrounding fields. It really was beautiful countryside, fields and farmland

undeterred by the sprawling human cities nearby. I could not appreciate it, though. Not when I knew what terror was lurking. Darkness may have been several hours away, but Raziel mentioned earlier that Cain had probably scouted the area

already. The more sympathetic side of me hoped the weak little humans were okay, but I couldn’t exactly run up there and warn them about vampires. Surely there

wouldn’t be many humans loitering around at night when the vampires struck.

“Okay, here is where we split up.” Raziel had pulled the map out again. We were sheltered in a copse of trees just where the mountain began to steepen. There was a road not too far away, and human tourists drove by every few seconds, no doubt

driving to the top where I had spotted a cathedral. It must’ve held some sort of significance to their religion because the mountain was surprisingly busy.

“Rebekah has been told that the ceremony itself will beheld near the cathedral. The vampires themselves cannot enter a holy place, but they will get as close as possible to conduct it.”

 

 

 

 

*

As Produced By SheriffSquinty

*

I noticed many confused expressions on my packmates’ faces, and Maria tossed me a bewildered look. I shook my head, not wanting to explain everything now. They would just have to trust us. My father, too, caught my eye, but I just

mouthed, ‘Later’ .

“Therefore, we will split up into groups of four. Go as close to the cathedral as you can, until it is surrounded, but leave about a half-mile radius until the vampires

arrive. They have a much poorer sense of smell than we do, unless they are

scenting blood, but we still must take precautions. Camouflage yourselves as best you can. Remain hidden. They see pretty well in the dark, and they move quickly. They must not detect our presence until it’s too late. I don’t care if you have to roll in mud to obscure your scent.”

 

 

 

 

 

In a different situation, I would have laughed, but Raziel was deathly serious. At his indication, Eli stepped forward, glancing at me. “Skylar, I know you are our Luna, but would you mind granting me the authority to choose the groups?”

I nodded, surprised that he even asked. Sure, I was Luna, but he had much more fighting experience. Of course I would trust him to lead the charge.

“Thank you, Luna,” Eli said respectfully, making my cheeks glow. He then began to put us in groups. He put my mother in my group, along with Will. My father and Eva were to remain with Raziel and Rebekah, as they maybe needed to heal the

wounded during the fight. They would fight only when absolutely necessary. An

older warrior from the Black Mountains Pack, Theo, was also put with us. He was very large and very muscular, and I could not help but be comforted by his hulking presence. A scar slashed across the left side of his face and his arms were covered with smaller marks. This was a Wolf that had survived many fights throughout the years. Theo gave me a brief nod and came to stand beside us.

“I have to ask . . . exactly how many Vamps are we fighting?” Kale piped up.

Raziel tilted his head slightly, considering. “Initially, I thoughthe had about fifty vampires in his coven.”

A taut silence fell upon the group as everyone calculated our numerical disadvantage.

“However, I think I overestimated the number to begin with. On top of that,

Gabriel killed a couple when he went to rescue Skylar, and I took care of a couple more myself.”

I blinked at him in surprise, not having heard this tidbit of information before.

“Also, I’m sure he left several behind, perhaps to watch your pack, or his estate

and belongings. My new calculations put his coven, the ones that will be coming to Mount Tabor, between thirty and thirty-five vampires.”

I wasn’t sure whether to feel relieved. It was a lower number than I thought, but that was still two vampires for every one of us. Then again, I had taken on two by myself before. Most of them were not as strong asus.

Eli separated the rest of us into groups. Before we could split up, however, I took a moment to go hug Maria and my father. They both looked incredibly worried but I tried to steer the conversation clear of “goodbye”. I was very much hoping for the

best, but I would not go into a fight like this before at least saying

something. Just in case.

“Don’t worry. They aren’t that tough. I had to fight two by myself, once. Like

Raziel said on the plane, just don’t let them bite you. It hurts.” I gave a weak smile,

 

 

 

 

 

which Maria poorly attempted to return. My Father just gave me a tight hug and said nothing.

I noticed others around me doing the same, embracing or respectfully wishing each other luck, even those who had not started out in the same pack.

“One last thing,” Raziel spoke quietly, and he pulled his backpack off of his

shoulders and unzipped it. “Sunlight maybe the easiest way to kill a vampire, but there are other ways to . . . incapacitate them. Beheading them will do the trick, but it’s much harder to behead a vampire than you think. Ripping their hearts out

won’t instantly kill them, either. Breaking their necks will temporarily knock them out, so if you don’t have enough time to kill them, that will work. However, these can make it easier.”

 

He began to pull objects out of the backpack: cross necklaces, rosaries, and the

like, all things that could be worn when we were in Wolf form. He began to hand them out to the gathered wolves, but I noticed some of the more weathered

warriors didn’t get any. I quickly realized that Raziel had less than a dozen holy objects for us to use.

“These aren’t as powerful as your necklace, Skylar, or the objects used toward

vampires away from your packs. These are intended to either deter the weaker

vampires or injure them. The objects have been Blessed, so the presence of one or direct contact will weaken a vampire. I’m afraid they won’t really harm Cain, or his right-hand vampire Antonio, though. The older vampires are more immune.” He took a deep breath, looking resigned. “Still, they could prove advantageous in battle. They are the only ones I have that were Blessed correctly so that they’ll

harm a vampire for more than just a split second. They heal quickly.”

There was a wave of hushed murmurs and exclamations as those that had received an object either put it on or stashed it somewhere. With a last round of instructions, we split into our groups. My mother, Will, Theo, and I were supposed to go to the east side of Mount Tabor, so we headed in that direction. I hadn’t taken more than a couple steps before I felt a delicate hand grip my arm.

I turned to see Rebekah, her radiant brown eyes examining me with an expression I could not decipher. Her elegant hand was cool on the hot skin of my arm and she

pulled me closer, surprising me when she wrapped her arms around me in a tight embrace.

“Be safe, Skylar,” she whispered, her breath ruffling the hair by my ear.

“You too,” I said quietly,my voice muffled against her arm. She pulled away,

gracing me with a smile. I had overheard Rebekah’s part of the plan on the plane:

 

 

 

 

 

she was to go into the mountaintop cathedral via a back door, which was where Gabriel would be going to sacrifice his blood. She would get Gabriel out of the back. The two of them together, with Raziel, would be enough to kill Cain.

Especially since he would be caught by surprise . . .

I hoped. She had been abit vague about that part of the plan, but I was more

focused on my portion. We had to wait until the vampires were assembled and then catch them off guard. That was what we were counting on for this plan: that Cain

would never expect us to be here. He would never have known that Rebekah was alive, and that we could get the information out of Vivian.

If he had been expecting us, none of this would work. The plan was quite simple, after all. It was all we could come up with in such a short time span.

To my surprise, Rebekah’s hands came up and cupped my face. There was

admiration in her expression and it made my cheeks warm. “You will be such a wonderful Luna, and Gabriel is lucky to have you by his side.”

My eyes threatened to tear up and I blinked them away. “I just hope we can save him.”

She nodded once, determined. “I think we’ll do it.”

“Get him out, okay?” My voice was just a whisper.

“You know I will.” There was an odd look on Rebekah’s face,as if she wanted to say something else, but she swallowed the words and gave a small smile instead. Her hands released their hold, and she stepped back. “You should probably get

going. I need to get back to Raziel.”

I dipped my head in acknowledgment and gave Rebekah a small wave goodbye,

waiting a moment for her to gracefully turn and return to her father, before heading back to join my small group.

Once again, time passed torturously slowly. We still had a few hours before dark, which was fortunate in some ways, but it made the wait nearly unbearable. It didn’t take us too long to position ourselves on the east side of the mountain. From there, we spread out until each of us was about a hundred or more feet apart. We were

less likely to be detected that way. We hid in the thickest part of the trees over

here, away from the nearest trail that the tourists followed. As evening approached the crowds on Mount Tabor had lessened significantly. I hoped everyone left

before Cain and his vampires arrived.

 

*

Hall Of Supernatural Stories

 

 

 

 

 

*

I lay on my belly, the thick undergrowth around me scraping against my dirt-caked fur. As ridiculous as it felt, I had done as Raziel asked and attempted to mask my scent as much as possible by rolling in the dirt and grass in wolf form. For now I

was downwind of the cathedral, and I hoped those on the other side of the

mountain had tried to mask their scents as well. I knew the vampires did not have a precise sense of smell but we could not take risks.

My muscles were beginning to cramp as the minutes ticked by and darkness

approached. Flies buzzed around me, irritating my face and causing me to snap my mighty jaws in irritation. Far to my right, I could barely make out my mother, in

Wolf form, mostly obscured in the bushes with the impending darkness. Will was down and to my left, and my keen eyesight caught the flash of his orbs behind me. I turned my head back towards the front, scenting the air for the umpteenth time.

Vampires moved fast, so as soon as the darkness hit, I expected them to arrive. I

was surprised when they did not. An hour passed as I lay motionless, and then

another. The moonlight was broken by the thick branches above me. I huffed in

irritation, my Wolf wanting to getup and pace but knowing better than to move.

I stretched out slightly, resting my muzzle on the ground before impatience made

me raise my head and glance back and forth. I saw a flash of Wolf eyes and heard a voice in my head,

Aren’t they supposed to be hereby now? My Mother asked, impatience raw in her tone. We Wolves did not like waiting for too long.

Maybe they are waiting until it’s closer to midnight.

I think most, if not all, of the humans are gone . . . but I think a couple are guarding the cathedral. She said, and I detected a hint of worry emanating from her. I knew why; my Mother and I had always had a soft spot for humans compared to the

others.

There’s nothing we can do about it, I replied softly, eventhough I knew she could sense my guilt. My Mother said nothing, instead refocusing ahead of us.

The cathedral was nearly a half-mile up the mountain so I could not see it, and I counted instead on scenting the vampires and quietly following them up the

mountain. I’d have to use the upmost stealth. Everyone in my group, including

Theo, had tried to mask their scents as best as possible. I fervently hoped nothing would go wrong.

Perhaps half an hour later, I sensed it: vampiric presence. The hairs on my back

stood up and I barely kept from growling. I could hardly detect a whiff of vampire

 

 

 

 

 

scent on the air, but like always, I was able to sense them. In the distance I heard rustling and murmured voices. They were not making too much effort to keep

quiet. I pricked my ears, trying to hear Cain’s voice, but could not. The vampires were fairly far away, closer to the wolves waiting on the north side of Mount

Tabor. I hoped they were lying low.

I slowly shifted position, waiting patiently eventhough my heart was thudding in my chest. A few more minutes trickled by, and the sounds faded into the distance as the vampires continued towards the top of the mountain. And then, with another fresh breeze, I scented him.

Gabriel.

It took every ounce of effort to keep from leaping to my feet and charging up the mountain. I had not predicted the impact his musky smell would have on me; I

wanted to whine and call out to him in Wolf form, force him to come tome.

Instead, I took deep breaths, letting his presence wash over me eventhough he

likely did not know I was nearby. I didn’t dare try to contact him again. I was sure the others smelt him too but it was nothing compared to my body’s reaction. Every single hair was standing on end now and my Mark, visible even in this form,

almost seemed to be burning.

I could not wait any longer. I slowly moved into a crouch and crept out of the bush in which I’d been hiding.

Let’s go, I instructed my group. Gabriel was drawing me to him whether he wanted to or not. I just wanted to see him, let my eyes fall upon his form and make sure he was in one piece.

 

Hearts pounding,muscles tense, the four of us began our trek up the mountain. Luckily we’d had stalking practice when we hunted as wolves, and we were

practically soundless as we moved up the steepening slope. Fortunately it was grassy instead of rocky so our paws didn’t slip and make extra noise. I crawled

from bush to bush,knowing my pack was near me and reassured by their presence. I kept my breathing even and quiet but there was nothing I could do about my

quickening heart.

We moved as quickly as possible without making too much noise, and the

murmured voices grew louder as we reached the vampires’ location. Up the

mountain, I could see the light emitting from the cathedral and realized how close we were. There wasn’t a lot more forest between here and there, so after a few

more minutes, I crouched even lower until my belly fur was scraping against the

 

 

 

 

 

ground. I crept as close as I daredand I could soon hear every word the vampires were saying.

Up ahead of me, the ground leveled and the trees thinned. There was enough light to reveal a few shadowy figures, clearly vampires, but they were not looking this way. I heard many more vampires near them and I swiveled my ears to eavesdrop. “This is so damn boring. Why the Hell does he need all of us, anyway?”

“You knowhow careful he is.”

“Shhh, he’ll hear you!”

The three were muttering irritably amongst themselves. I realized Cain must’ve been close to the front of the cathedral while we were on one of the sides, if his minions thoughthe couldn’thear their conversation.

“I’d found the perfect feeding place, too. I didn’t want to travel all the way out here, especially with that dog.”

I bristled at the insult to Gabriel and tried to calm my Wolf’s agitation. It would

not be wise to reveal our location now. We were supposed to wait for Eli’s signal, and Raziel was going to distract Cain while we took out his vampires. As I sathere and thought about it, I realized I had no clue how Raziel would distract Cain

without getting killed. Worry bubbled up in my stomach and I swallowed hard.

“He freaked me out. He just stares . . . doesn’t talk . . . no matter how much of a

beating he took the stupid thing stayed silent.” That was a female vampire talking. I bared my teeth in a silent snarl. How dare they touch my Mate! How dare they

lay their hands on what was mine! I was going to rip them to shreds.

“The silver didn’t weaken him as much as it would a normal dog,” another vampire pointed out casually. I tensed yet again, hoping against hope that Eli gave the

signal soon. I was about to go crazy and reveal our position to tear into those stupid bloodsuckers for what they did to Gabriel.

Raziel has eyes on Cain. So do I. He’s with Gabriel, and Gabriel is going into the cathedral,

that was Eli speaking. He sent me a mental image, and I felt a stab of relief so

powerful it almost left me keeling over. Although the picture was a bit distorted since I wasn’t the one seeing it, looking upon Gabriel’s broad form as he strode into the cathedral made me sag with relief. From what I could see of him, he was okay. Cain stood fairly close to the cathedral’s entrance, but it was obvious he

could not go any closer. The myth about vampires in holy places was apparently true.

I closed my eyes briefly, controlling my emotions. We could not save Gabriel ifI was a blubbering mess. I knew I had to be strong for him.

 

 

 

 

 

Before my thoughts could wander further, a few things happened almost

instantaneously. Even from my distance, I heard the loud ‘thud’ of the cathedral’s door slamming shut. Then, Eli’s presence invaded my mind, and he spoke one

word,

Now.

I was off like a rocket, paws thundering heavily against the ground. I heard others around me and in the distance, all of us breaking our cover. Within seconds I threw myself at full werewolf speed out of the trees and into the large clearing near the

cathedral, not taking a single instant to observe the scenery as I prepared to fight for my life. Startled vampires spun around, hissing in fury and terror. And then it began.

#Tobecontinued……

 

*******

So prepare yourselves for what’s to come darlings.

Expect more Tense Happens, and of cos, a little Action!

&

The next couple of Happens will be as long as this too.

So braceyourselves.

*******

I guess I’ll seeya in the next Happen.

_ _-Agboola-_ _

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