“What are you talking about?”
I felt something shift, and a whole new fear ran through me. As upset as I had been over the dog, I hadn’t hated Jack, or even really been mad at him.
“This!” Jack shook his head and walked past me. “Everything! This is so stupid. I am so stupid.”
“What are you talking about?” I ran after him, wondering what I had done that had been so terrible. I reached out for him, but he pulled his arm away before I even got close to it.
“I’m taking you home.” We had reached the car, but he stood outside of it, waiting for me to get in. I had stopped in front of it and refused to go any further.
“No!” I insisted. “Why?”
“Why?” He laughed, but it was humorless and sent nervous shivers all over me. Then he reeled on me, his face stone cold, and his voice harsher than I had ever imagined it could be. “I killed a dog – to save your life – and you look at me like I’m a monster!”
He rubbed his temple, and I saw blood covering his hand. Somehow, I’d managed to forget that the dog had bitten him.
“Jack, I don’t think that you’re a monster,” I explained softly. “I just don’t like it when things die.”
“Nobody does, Alice,” Jack replied icily. He bit his lip and shook his head, then mumbled, “The damn thing was probably rabid. It was gonna die anyway.”
“I know that,” I swallowed hard. “I don’t know what I did that upset you so much, but I’m sorry. I never wanted to offend you. And I don’t think it’s fair that you’re going to cut me out of your life because I cried over a dog.”
“It’s not because you cried.” He softened a little, but he still wouldn’t look at me. “It was the way you looked at me.”
“I’m sorry!” I insisted. “I was in shock! The dog just charged at us and attacked you and then… I don’t know. I’m sorry. It was just because it was a dog. Remember when you beat up those people in the parking garage? I didn’t cry then.”
“No, you didn’t,” Jack agreed, and he finally seemed to be relenting. I took a step closer to him, eyeing up the ragged holes in his sweatshirt and the blood on his hand.
“We should go the hospital,” I said.
“Why?” Jack looked up at me, his eyes terrified. “Did he get you? I thought I blocked him-”
“No, I’m fine,” I cut him off, and he relaxed again. “I was talking about you. The dog bit you.”
“No, that’s fine.” He waved his arm absently and moved closer to the car, like he would escape into the car and away from my prying eyes. “It’s not a big deal.”
“Yeah, it is,” I continued towards him. “You shirts all torn up and I can see the blood. Plus, like you said, the dog’s probably rabid. You’re going to need a rabies shot.”
“I’ll go tomorrow. It’s not that bad.” Jack had stepped so far back that he pressed up against the door. I reached for his arm, and he pulled it back from me, but I wouldn’t have any of it.
“Jack!” I said firmly, and he let out an exasperated sigh.
“It’s really not that bad,” he repeated, but he let me take his arm.
The hoodie was soaked with blood that covered his hand, so I doubted his claims. Very carefully, I pulled up the sleeve of his shirt and gasped.
There were three little teeth holes in arms. That was all. They were slightly red and raised, but they were smaller than a pencil. On top of that, they weren’t even bleeding.
Blood covered his arm, but the trails seemed to connect just outside of where the teeth marks were. He probably didn’t even need a Band-Aid.
“Oh my god,” I whispered, gaping at his lack of injury.
“I told you it wasn’t bad.” Jack yanked his arm back from me and pulled down his sleeve.
“How?” I stared up at him. “There’s all that blood…”
“I bleed easy. I’m a hemophiliac,” Jack replied, and for some reason, that answer made him smirk.
“No, it’s not possible,” I shook my head. “I heard the dog crunching into your bone. There’s no way that wounds that shallow would hit bone.”
“It all happened so fast. You can’t be sure of what you heard,” he attempted to explain it all away.
“I know what I heard!” I said it with more conviction than I actually had. “You should have massive bite marks and maybe even a broken arm. And how did you even get that dog down?”
“You saw me do that.” He looked at me skeptically, but there was something brewing in his eyes that I couldn’t read.
“That dog was huge and crazy!” I remembered the way that Jack had stopped it with one hand before he threw it the ground. It easily weighed over a hundred pounds, and it had clamped onto his arm. “It’s not even humanly possible for you to be able to stop a dog like that, not without a massive fight, and you have one barely-there bite mark! If he could be taken down that easily, then…”
“What exactly are you saying?” Jack narrowed his eyes at me, but there was a brightness to them. He was hoping I would figure it out.
“You were bit, but there’s hardly a wound, and-and you have like super human strength and… everything in the whole world wants to have sex with you and… you don’t have a temperature!” I spouted.
Biting my lip, I didn’t look at him. I tried to figure it all out, but none of it made sense. I could feel him looking at me, but I just couldn’t put the puzzle together.
“So?” Jack asked encouragingly.
“So…” I threw my arms up in the air, feeling completely exasperated. “I don’t know! You’re a werewolf!” Jack scoffed and looked disappointed.
“There’s no such thing as werewolves,” he rolled his eyes and opened the car door.
“Well, what else is there?” I whined, but he shut the door instead of answering me. I ran around to the other side of the car and jumped in. “What’s going on, Jack?”
“I bleed a lot, you’re confused cause you got caught up in the emotion, my adrenaline gave me the power to take down the dog, and I am just stunningly attractive,” he explained, but his tone was teasing, especially on the part about him being attractive. “Oh, and I do to have a temperature. Everything has a temperature.”