“Its okay, Jane. Don’t worry about it,” I tried to reassure her. I wanted to go over to her, but I knew Gunnar wouldn’t allow it. Jack and Milo didn’t know what to do anymore than I did, so we all just stood there, waiting until Gunnar told us what he wanted.
“Dodge, make the food more appetizing,” Gunnar commanded. Dodge reached into his pocket, and before I knew what was going on, he’d bent over and sliced open her arm from elbow to wrist.
“Jane!” I started to run towards her to save her, but Jack wrapped his arm around me and stopped me.
“Alice, no,” Jack hissed in my ear when I fought him. His grip was like an iron bar, and I was disappointed with how little I could do against it. I was even weaker than I thought.
I would’ve kept fighting against him anyway, but I smelled her blood. She held her arm up, trying to stop it, but it was flowing hot and sweet. My hunger intensified, a painful burning that shot through me.
I closed my eyes and swallowed it back. I did not want to bite her, and I wouldn’t. Within a few seconds, I calmed down enough where Jack could let go of me, but he didn’t.
“Put pressure on the wound,” I said to Jane, and it surprised me how calm I sounded. “Tear your dress and put a tourniquet about the elbow, or you’re gonna bleed out.”
Jane did as she was told, her hands trembling and tears streaming down her cheeks. She struggled tying it around her arm, and Dodge moved to stop her.
“No, let her do it,” Gunnar said, and Dodge straightened back up. He stood right over, watching as Jane sobbed and almost fell over onto the grass. “It’s not fun if she bleeds to death first.”
“I’m not going to bite her,” I said, looking back at him. “None of us are.”
“I feel a challenge growing,” Gunnar grinned at me, showing his teeth.
I heard footsteps approaching, and I turned towards the trail. None of the lycan would be dumb enough to make a sound walking. This was a human, taking a stroll through the park at midnight. Admittedly, it was a stupid human, but he was definitely innocent of any involvement in this. Just a chubby guy in his twenties with dark glasses.
He was walking one of those ridiculous puggle dogs, and it sensed trouble before he did. The dog had been sniffing along the path, but then it looked at us and barked. No sooner had the guy looked toward us, then Stellan burst out from nowhere and dove on him.
I wanted to scream, but I opened my mouth and nothing came out. The guy didn’t even have a chance before Stellan ripped out his throat. Jane screamed, and she was the only one that made a sound. His little dog barked angrily but realized the danger was too much for him and took off down the path.
Stellan was gnawing at his throat, and I could see the blood spurting out around him, as well as smell it. His body convulsed and shook, and I heard the sounds of bone tearing as Stellan completely tore through his neck, and the guy’s body stopped moving.
I shrank back from the sight, but I couldn’t look away. I wanted to throw up, and I hated myself for getting thirsty over the scent of blood. When I felt Milo’s hand, I almost jumped. He put his hand in mine and squeezed.
I had never seen anything so horrific in my life as Stellan ripping apart a living person, and when I finally managed to look away, I saw that Milo had tears in his eyes. Suddenly, he looked so young and scared, and he moved closer to me. I wanted to hug him, but I was afraid of how Gunnar would react, so I settled for holding his hand.
“It’ll be okay,” I lied, looking Milo in the eye. “At least it happened really fast. I’m sure he didn’t feel anything.”
“He probably didn’t,” Gunnar admitted. “But he could’ve. Stellan was a little hasty with him, but he can do it much slower. Shall I have him show you?”
“No!” I said too quickly, and Gunnar laughed. Jack moved to block both Milo and me from Gunnar, and we stood behind him, holding hands and shivering like two scared little kids.
“Stellan!” Gunnar shouted without looking at him.
Stellan gave up on eating the guy and lifted his head. His face and chest were covered in blood, and he wiped at them absently with the back of his sleeve as he walked over to us.
“What do you want from us?” Jack asked. He was as scared and sick as I was, but he could almost pass for calm and confident.
“How about… a game?” Gunnar smiled.
Stellan returned to his side, leaving the corpse in the middle of the trail like a discarded piece of trash, like a half eaten apple. Gunnar’s eyes moved to something behind me, and when I turned, it was already too late.
A giant vampire had somehow crept up behind us, and he wrapped his massive bare arms around Milo. He yelped in surprise and fought against the vampire, but it was completely useless. He was the largest person I’d ever seen in my life, and he had vampire strength behind it. Milo was still gripping my hand, and I clung onto him tightly, trying to pull him from the vampire.
“Alice!” Jack had his arms around me, refusing to let me be dragged along with Milo as the vampire pulled him away, but I wouldn’t let go. “Alice! Let him go! Alice!”
“Milo!” I screamed, but my fingers slipped, and I let go of him.
Tears streamed down his cheeks, and he was still reaching his arm out for me. His huge brown eyes had never looked so sad or scared in his life. I kicked at Jack, but he wouldn’t let me go.
“Alice, as you can see, my good friend Bear isn’t hurting him,” Gunnar interrupted.
Bear, the gargantuan vampire, had Milo firmly secured in his arms, but he didn’t even appear to be squeezing him. Milo still squirmed and fought against him, but he didn’t look like he was in any real pain, just terrified.
“Milo – that’s your name, yes?” Gunnar asked. Milo didn’t say anything and kept fighting. “Milo, are you in any pain? Is he hurting you?”
“No,” Milo grunted and settled down in Bear’s grip. He was saying it for my benefit, so I would stop fighting against Jack. He looked over at me and nodded. “I’m okay.”
I did finally stop struggling against Jack, but smartly, he didn’t let me go. I would’ve taken off towards Milo the second he did.
“Let him go!” I yelled and turned to Gunnar. “He has nothing to do with this! Just let him go! Peter doesn’t even like him!”
He laughed at that, but I’m not sure how that was amusing. Jack said nothing, but he was gauging the situation. He knew Gunnar had some plan going on, and he was trying to figure it out. I knew that too, but I couldn’t keep my emotions under control.