The Test

I remember that night like it was yesterday. The cool breeze of summer night air filled my room as I drifted off into sleep, while my mind raced with thoughts of what the summer would bring. Lots of shopping and hanging out with friends at the pool were just the treat, I needed to take my mind off the stressful school year, and with my parents away I would be able to enjoy a week’s vacation from both.

Not long after I had fallen asleep, I was awakened by loud noises coming from downstairs. Afraid and confused I reached for my cell phone that I always left on the side of my bed but found it wasn’t there. The noises from downstairs became louder, and I could feel my heart beat faster as I frantically searched for my phone in my darkened room, to afraid to turn on the light.

“Where did I put it?” I said shaken but trying to hold myself together to no avail. “Damn it!” I started to scratch my forehead and think about where another phone might be. That’s when I realized that the closes’ phone was downstairs in the living room, but how could I make it there without being seen by whomever or whatever it was downstairs? It was impossible, but I had to do it. I had to call the police, and I knew the house better than whoever was downstairs so I would be fine. I grabbed my robe off my chair and slowly opened my bedroom door.

The house was dark, but my eyes had long adjusted to its darkness it was almost as if I could see in the dark as clearly as I could in the light. The flower wallpaper that my mother and I had installed just that past spring, was just as clear and colorful then as it were with the lights on and this confused me. Most people could only see shadowy figures of objects in the dark, and they certainly wouldn’t be able to see a dark sign saying, “keep out” in a pitch-black house, but somehow I could. This frightened me and amazed me at the same time. However, instead of focusing on that I just continued to walk towards the loud noise that was invading my dreams and hurting my head.

The closer I got to the bottom of the steps the louder the noise became, and I could almost make out voices; however, they weren’t human at all. My heart started to race faster as I finally reached the bottom of the steps and made my way into the living room, making sure to avoid bumping into anything so whoever was there couldn’t hear me.

Once I found the phone and tried to dial out the line went dead. “Oh God no please.” I cried as I tried to dial the cops again. The noise from the other room got louder, and my head began to pound. It felt like someone had taken a 2×4 to my head and continued hitting me until all I could do was crawl up into a ball and cry for my parents who left me for that week.

As the noise got louder, I could feel my body starting to change. My nails grew longer my hair began to fallout, and my skin began to change into black fur. “What’s happening to me?” I asked no one. “You’re becoming what you were meant to be.” I heard my grandmother’s voice say but could not see her. “Grandma?” I managed to say through the pain.“I’m here.” At that moment, three wolves came into the living room and just stared at me while my body changed.

For hours, I could feel my bones twisting and breaking uncontrollably with what seemed like no end as I screamed out in pure agony and pain while the wolves watched.  When the transformation was complete, I heard my grandmother’s voice again this time coming from one of the wolves. “You did well.” She said proudly. “What?” I managed to say still in pain and confused. “You’ve passed.” I heard my mother’s voice say from the other wolf. “Passed what?” I asked confused that a wolf was talking to me.
“The test.” I heard my father say. “What test?” I asked now believing everything that had just happened to be a dream. “Most people your age wouldn’t have been able to transform as you did and live, you my dear have passed.”  My grandmother said again. “What’s going on? What’s happening to me?  I asked freaking out and trying to leave. “Calm down sweetie this is supposed to happen.” My mother said trying to soothe me. “Why?” I asked confused. “I’ll explain tomorrow but tonight I want to show you something.” My grandmother said.

Before I could answer my father transformed back into human form, and we followed him to the front door. Once he opened it my grandmother and mother ran out then stopped because I was still standing inside afraid of what was about to happen. “Go.” My father said. I shook my head yes then followed my mother and grandmother outside.

The night world was amazing because all of my senses were heightened, and the world seemed so much bigger than I could have every imaged. The smell of the night air was so intoxicating, that it consumed me and for the first time in my life, I felt free like the world was my playground and I could do with it as I pleased. My grandmother then took me to a spring in the woods to drink. The water was so sweet it tasted like candy, and I could hear things coming from miles away, like the sound of a deer running across the grass. I didn’t want the night to end, but I knew it would have to.

The next morning I woke up in my bed smiling because of that night which I thought was all a dream. As I got up out of bed, I grabbed my robe and headed down the steps thinking about that night and longing for another dream like that one. However, once I reached the kitchen and saw my parents and grandmother having coffee and eating breakfast, I was completely taken aback. “Morning sweetie; did you sleep well?” My mother asked me with a smile. “Yes I did, but what are you doing here?” I asked confused. “What do you mean? Did you really think we’d leave you alone after your first transformation?” My grandmother asked puzzled. “You mean that really happened?” I asked still confused. “Yes it really happened.” My father said with a smile. I sat down at the table and just stared at them. “Is it going to happen again?” I asked still in disbelief. “Yes.” My mother said with a smile while she was drinking her coffee. “Why and when?” I asked intrigued. “Every full moon you will change for now, but once you learn how to master it; you will be able to change at will.” My grandmother informed me. “As for the why it’s because you come from a very long line of shapeshifters. It’s in your blood. “Why?” I asked curiously. “There have been stories about that question but the only answer I can give you for sure is that it’s something that has been past done from generation to generation.” She added. “Oh. So now what?” I asked staring at her both eagered and skeptical. “Now you come with me, and I will teach you how to control your transformations.” My grandmother said. “When?” I asked trying not to show my excitement. “Now. Go pack and I will be waiting for you at the car.” “OK” I said getting up from the table and walking to my room.

Once I had finished packing I looked at my room one last time then slowly made my way down the steps and out the door where my grandmother and parents were waiting.“Ready?” She asked. “Ready?” I said my good-byes to my parents then left with my grandmother.

As I look back now at that night, I come to the conclusion that it wasn’t until then that my life truly began. Before I was just a typical girl going through the motions, but now I had become something extraordinary, and it was all because of that moment when I passed that test.

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Do I?

The room grew silent as she made her way down the long aisle.  “Am i doing the right thing?” She thought as she gazed softly at the man standing at the other end of the room with a huge smile on his face. “I think i am.” She thought unsure of her emotions. When she finally reached the other end of the room the pastor asked “Who gives this woman to this man?” The tall man in a dark brown suit said proudly “I do.” The crowd laughed at his response as she thought “Do I? Is this right?” The man then took his seat and she stood across from the man that would soon become her husband. As he smiled and the pastor talked of love and honor, she began to think about whether or not she should be taking this giant leap, especially since he came back. Yes him, Mr. Victor Gonzalez III. the man that she had only dreamt about since he left her without a word all those years ago.

Suddenly the back doors to the church opened and everyone looked towards it. In the doorway stood him with a desperate look on his face. He said not a word only stood there staring at her as if they were the only two people in the room. She stood there frozen like an icicle to nerves to say or do anything. Her would be husband looked from the man standing at the door to her. “Madison?” He said softly. Her heart was racing a mile a mintue as she tried to focus on the wedding and her future husband; however, she couldn’t comepletly break her gaze. It was as if something inside of her was calling out for him to rescue her from this mistake she was about to make. “Madison.” Her would be husband said again this time she looked at him and smiled, but still unsure of what to do. “I’m fine.” She lied. The pastor continued, then said “Do you take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband.” Her gaze turned back to Vic who was still standing in the doorway waiting like everyone else for her answer.

Five years earlier…

“Princess.” A voice called out. Madison openned her eyes. The sun was beaming through a crack in her bedroom curtain making it hard for her to open her eyes. “Princess.” The voice said again. This time the curtains were pulled back causing Madison to pull her blanket over her head. “Come on Princess get up we’re going to be late.” The voice urgently. She was given the nickname Princess by her father when she was born because, she was his only daughter and it stuck. “I’m up.” Madison said irrated. She was still laying under the covers with her eyes closed hoping for that person to go away so she could go back to sleep. “Really, because you’re still under the covers.” The voice said. Irritated, Madison pulled the blanket from over her head and looked at the person in her room. She was average height light skin with slanted eyes, if people didn’t know her better or heard her speak, they would swear she was Chinese. “Get the hell out of my room Tweety.” Madison ordered. “Fine, but you better be out in twenty mintues or we’re leaving you.” Tweety warned as she left the room. Madison laid in bed a little longer trying to wake herself up by staring at the ceiling. A few moments later, she finally decided to get up and get ready. She lived in a three bedroom apartment on her school campus with her cousin Madasia who everyone called Tweety because of her obsession with Tweety bird and their best friend Tamira, who they had known since they were kids and everyone called T.

Madison sat up in her queen size bed and reached for her towel that was conveniently places on a chair next to her bed. It was the last week of school before finals and they had planned to go out for breakfast with some friends that day, only Princess was tried from partying with some friends the night before and was not in a hurry to eat breakfast. She placed her feet in her slippers then sluggishly walked out the door carrying both her robe and towel.

Morning Princess.” She heard a male voice say. She just waved and kept walking towards the bathroom. “Damn I haven’t seen you in two years and that’s all I get? I’m kind of hurt.” The male voice said. Madison slowly turned around. She knew that voice, she just hoped she was wrong, but with her heart beating a mile a minute it was unmistakable who that voice belonged to. Her fears were realized when she turned around and saw Vic Gonzalez III or Lil Vic as everyone called him smiling at her with those sea green eyes and deep dimples on each cheek that complemented his chiseled jaw bone and goatee. She felt herself go numb. He was tall caramel with a low fade and muscular. He had that fresh cut look and she couldn’t find the words to speak. All of a sudden she because aware of her surroundings and her appearence. She had had a crush on him since she was in middle school, but he always treated her like his little sister to her dismay. “Hi Vic.” She stuttered. “What brings you here?” “I came to see my little sister and she invited me to breakfast than she said something about a baseball game.” He said smiling. “I never said anything about baseball, you know I hate baseball.” Tamira said. She was Vic’s younger sister and a bit of a know it all, but was rich beautiful and still fun to hang with. “So why did Tweety hand me tickets?” He asked confused, a look he was prone to. “Well a friend of my fave them to me plus thet are second base seats meaning free food and drinks.” Tweety explained. She was up to something and both Madison and T could tell, they just wasn’t sure what it was. “I guess.” Tamira said unsure. “Princess go take a shower so we can go.” She ordered. “Yes ma’am.” Princess said disappearing into the bathroom and closing the door.

When she saw her appearance, she almost screamed. Her hair was all over her head, her night gown had pooh bear all over it and her mascara was all over her face. She looked a hot mess and suddenly felt embarrassed that Lil Vic had actually seen her like that. “Okay don’t panic.” She told herself. “I can fix this.” Twenty minutes later she came out the bathroom wearing her towel and slippers. She purposely left the robe on the bathroom so Vic could see her; unfortunately for her, when she came out the bathroom, he wasn’t there and Tweety was standing in the kitchen. “Where are T and Vic?.” She asked trying not to sound desperate. “Oh they’ll be back, T’s just showing him around campus. You know Vic.” Tweety said nonchalantly. “Yes I know Vic.” Madison said bitterly as she made her way to her room to get dress.

At first she was going to wear some straight jeans and a loose fit shirt, but after seeing Vic, she decided that sexy was the way to go and began rummaging through her clithes for the right outfit. Finally after what felt like hours of searching, she found the perfect outfit. Some faded booty shorts an a Molina Jersey that she had cut up days earlier. Lucky for her it was May and around 90 degrees outside or should would have had to explain herself.

After getting dress she began to fix her hair. It was already braided in micros so all she had to do was comb it outand put it in one of those buns that Tweety was famous for. “Come on Princes.” Tamira daid bamming on the door.” Coming.” She grabbed her bag, put on her sun glasses then slipped into some pumps. “It was a good thing I got my nails done ealier or this would be a problem.” She thought. She took one last look at herself in the mirror in her closet then said “here goes nothing” she then turned took in a deep breath and walked out her bedroom door.

Vic’s jaw dropped when he saw her. “Finally let’s go.” Tamira said walking towards the door. Everyone else followed behind her. “You look beautiful.” Vic said to Madison. “Thank you.” She blushed, proud of herself for getting his attention.

Later that day at the game. Madison made sure to sit next to Vic. I can’t believe you guys made me come here.” Tamira complained. Tweety rolled her eyes. “Why are you complaining, where else can you get free food and booze.” “They card here and I’m only 20 my birthday isn’t for another month, plus dumb ass won’t let me drink anyway. Tamira said siting down and pouting. Vic laughed. “I would be a dumbass if I let you drink I’m not trying to get killed over you, which is exactly what would happen if dad found out.” He said sternly. “You suck” She shot back.

The game was long and everyone but Vic was into it “I’m finna go get something to eat. You guys want anything? Tweety asked Madison and Lil Vic. “You do no they have servers right?” Vic asked confused. “True but I feel like getting up.” Tweety said back with a smile. “I’m good.” Vic replied. “Me too.” Madison said. Catching on Tamira stood up. “I’ll go with you.” They walked away. “Lil Vic.” Madison said trying to sound sexy. “What’s up?” He asked staring at the field. “Could you explain to me waht’s going on, I’m completely lost.” She said serious. She knew nothing about baseball, nor was she paying attention, she just said that to get his attention. “It’s not hard to understand. Right now the bases are loaded there are two outs and Molina is up to bat.” Vic said enthustically. “Which one is he?” She asked moving closer to him. “That one.” He said pointing. “Oh. Is this a good thing?” She asked curious. “If he gets a home run it will be.” He said with his eyes still glued to the game. Unfortunately he struck out and that ended the inning. “That’s some bullshit.” He said upset. “They’ll have another chance.” Madison assured him. “Hopefully.” Vic said shaking his head. Music started to play and someone tapped them on their shoulders, they looked up then smiled, it was the “kiss cam.” Madison stomach felt like it was turning backflips as she fought the urge to kiss him, but to her surprise he leaned foward first. She had always wondered what it would be like to kiss him and now that the opportunity had arrived, there was no way she would let it slip away. So she leaned foward and kissed him. What started off as a peck turned into something more and she knew in that moment that nothing would be the same…