A long time ago, back when I was in high school (about seven years ago, wow) I started writing my very first novel.
The Huntress and the Hound.
This novel was inspired by my love of all things Vampires. Yes, sadly, I was all aboard the Twilight train, but I eventually hopped off that ride.
Actually, my love for all things vampires started much earlier than that craze. Buffy the Vampire Slayer was my home girl, and I loved her dearly. From years and years dedicated to watching the Buff, the story of Bianca Monroe was created.
Bianca and I had a long and wild ride. It was a rollercoaster for sure – the kind that spanned years, with severe highs and lows, and many many different drafts. I finally finished the Huntress and the Hound (the final final copy), almost two years ago.
While working on other projects, like my other novel, Belonging, and it’s sequel Becoming – which is to come out within the next month – I’ve also been working on the sequel to The Huntress and the Hound. The set title for the sequel is An Empty Grave.
Because I’ve been so focused on other projects, I’ve decided to upload An Empty Grave, chapter by chapter on this blog.
For those of you who have stayed with me on this dark and wild ride, I appreciate you all, and I’m sorry that it has taken me so long.
Today, I will be posting the first three chapters in H+H for any one that is interested in knowing what this book is about. Starting next week, I will be posting a chapter every two weeks of An Empty Grave.
All comments and opinions will be greatly appreciated.
As always, stay rad, and don’t let the vampires bite. XD
The Huntress and the Hound: Chapter One
The chilly air pierces through my leather jacket, and I wrap my arms around myself. The silver of my knife feels cold against the skin of my back, and it sends a shiver through my body. It’s ahalf hour ride from the city of Chicago to my home in one of the neighboring suburbs. Then there is a short ten-minute walk from the train to my foster house. The path is one I’ve walked millions of times. Through the alley behind the house, down the gangway to the front, up the grapevine that’s directly below the window to my room on the second floor. Quiet as a mouse, I shove my knives and stake under a loose floorboard. It’s not long before I’ve showered, changed into my pajamas, and have collapsed onto the bed.
After a long few moments, there are no sounds that suggest the awakening of my foster parents, Mr. and Mrs. Gary Wright. That allows my subconscious to take over. Instead of dreaming about all the things that go bump in the night, I dream about my past life; the worst nightmare of all.
My name is Bianca Rose Monroe. I’m seventeen (soon to be eighteen) and my parents diedwhen I was thirteen. They were killed. I don’t know why or by whom. All I know is that they are forever gone from my life.
For the past four years, I’ve lived in Evanston, Illinois, with my foster family. It’s just a train ride away from Chicago. Oh, I also fight vampires.
My vampire hunting started about a year ago when I was walking home from a friend’s house. It was late and dark, and I made the stupid mistake of cutting through an alley when someone tried to attack me. Okay, well, he didn’t exactly try to attack me so much as he tried to bite me. I knew a couple of defensive moves from school, but then some of the moves also felt natural. It was like I knew what I was doing without even thinking about it. I tried to get away but he threw me to the ground, and I fell on top of a wooden chair someone threw away, smashing it to pieces. The man was really strong, and he kept trying to bite my neck. I scrambled for something, anything, and found a broken leg from the chair. I had to do something to get him off of me. The piece of wood went into his heart, and in the next instant my body was cover in ash and the guy was gone. What, I am very well aware of how this sounds, but this is how it happened. How my life as a vampire hunter began!
Insane was the first thing that popped into my head. I was insane, and imaging things, and also determined to stay away from dark alleys for a while. It worked for a while but then a couple of weeks later, while walking home from school, a girl was crying and begging for help. Against my better judgment, I followed the sounds of distress down an alley, and found a young girl with a dark figure leaning over her. I pulled a knife out of my bag, one that I’d been carrying around since my attack, and snuck up behind the man, and stuck it into his back. I shoved it in far enough to reach his heart, and after a few seconds he turned to ash. The girl’s eyes were closed, and she had two puncture wounds in the side of her neck, blood dripping from them. Putting my fingers to her neck, I felt a faint heartbeat. I made a call to 9 1 1, before making a run for it. That was almost a year ago.
Within the past year, I’ve purchased beautiful, handcrafted knives made of pure silver and researched tons of information about my prey. Some of my research included me going to clubs at night, playing the role of easy prey, trying to get the attention of vampires. I’ve found what attracts both male and female vampires best, and I use them to my advantage. For instance, vamps tend to go after people who are alone, mainly those who seemlonely. It’s easier when no one notices if their gone. It’s sad, I know. Because of this, though, I always keep a butterfly knife either in my back pocket or buried in the bottom of my bag. Usually, I don’t take it to school though. It’s hard to pass a knife through a metal detector. That is one of the many problems of modern teen-age life. Anyway, it’s not like vampires ever show up during the day.
Ugh, speaking of school. My alarm is probably going to go off soon.
“Bianca! Wake up! Come and eat your breakfast!” Lori, my foster mom, calls.
My alarm went off a couple of times. It was ignored each time, but Lori won’t be ignored. There aren’t many rules in the house, but one is that we have to go to school. The only real way out of it is death or close to it. One time I ignored her and went back to sleep, and she poured ice-cold water on me. That taught me.
Reaching over, I grab my phone, and check the time. Seven o’clock. I only got about five hours of sleep, including the two hours before I left for the night. Rolling out of bed, I stumble out of my room, and into the bathroom across the hall. After I pee and brush my teeth, I rinse my face with cold water. Hopefully that will wake me up a bit, and help me not look like a zombie. Then, I go back into my room and change into a pair of blue skinny jeans, a white V-neck, and a black sweater. I comb my long blonde hair with my fingers as I walk out of my room and down the stairs to the kitchen.
My foster mom, Lori Wright stands at the stove, and Vince, my foster brother, sits at the rectangular kitchen table.
“Good Morning,” I say with a yawn, as I slide into the seat across from Vince.
Lori sets a plate with eggs and toast in front of me. She smiles down at me. Lori is a petite woman, with brown hair that is a little past shoulder length. Today, she is wearing a brown t-shirt, and blue jeans.
“Morning, Sis,” Vince says.
Today he’s dressed in faded blue jeans, a greasy red t-shirt that has a faded logo across the chest, and timberlands on his feet. He spends way more money on a pair of shoes than I ever would. Vince is seventeen, just over six feet tall, and with shaggy, dark blonde hair that reaches just past his ears. He also treats me like im twelve, and is my overprotective big brother. It’s nice how he watches over me even though he really doesn’t have too.
“Did Gary leave for work already?” I ask.
Lori nods. “Yeah, he had a job early today down in the city.”
Gary is a technician. Usually, he’s either working or at home. Lori owns a store near downtown Chicago, and she spends most of her time there during the day.
It was a week before my fourteenth birthday when I was sent into foster care, and I officially moved in with the Wrights two months after my fourteenth birthday. Vince has beenhere, with the Wrightssince he was twelve. Vince’s real father was abusive, and one day someone saw the bruises and reported it. His father was taken into custody and Vince was sent into the foster system at the age of eight. He spent four years moving from foster home to foster home. When he finally moved in with the Wrights, he got into a fight at school a week later. He was sticking up for a girl who was being bullied. Instead of sending him away, the Wrightshad him explain his reasons, and when they heard him out, they decided to let him stay.
The Wrights were never able to have children of their own, so they took in foster children. They have given us everything a teenager could want. They’re kind, supportive, and trusting. They would help us with anything but I know they wouldn’t believe the things that I do at night. No one would believe me. Iwouldn’t believe me!
Vince finishes the food on his plate and looks over at me.
“Ready for school?” He asks.
“One minute,” I say, standing up, and going over to the coffee pot near the stove. I fill a mug halfway and then nearly pour it all down my throat. Lori hates that I drink coffee, but it helps me keep my energy up. Once finished, I put the mug in the sink, and then head towards the front door. I pull my Chucks on my feet, my jacket and, then grab my backpack of the floor.
“Good to go,” I announce, turning to Vince.
“Alright, let’s go!” he replies, and he pulls open the front door. We walk down the front pathway to his black four-door V8 truck. Vince works at an auto body shop in town. Gary made a deal with him, that when he reached a certain amount of money in his savings, and had good enough grades, Gary would help Vince buy a car; any one that he wanted. This was the one he picked.
We hop inside the comfy truck and off to school we go.
Vince parks his truck in the student parking lot, and we step out in the loud throng of students. . I look at the ancient building with despair, because as much as I love living with Lori and Gary, I really despise this school. Well, school in general. The good news is that I’m a senior, and there are only six months of school left.
People are everywhere as we walk through the parking lot. There are roughly close to 3,000 students who attend this school each year. Vince nods to people as we walk up the long path to the entrance. Vince is on the football team; he’s the defensive end. The team is one of the best in the state, which means everyone loves the football players. People say hi to me, mainly because I’m Vince’s ‘sister’ and I nod in their direction. There is really only one person who interests me.
To the left side of the front entrance a girl leans against the wall, in a cool, relaxed stance. She’s literally the best person at this school. Remington Jones. She’s the same height as me, about five feet ten inches. She has long wavy black hair that goes almost to her waist. She doesn’t wear that much makeup, except for a little around the eyes. Today she wears black thigh high boots over a pair of blue leggings, and black crop top under a dark red flannel. Simple, but she still looks awesome. She see’s me and smiles, which I return before looking over at my brother. He’s staring to the right of the front entrance where a groups of his friends stand. Vince turns back to me, and smiles.
“Have a good day. Stay out of trouble.”
I chuckle in response and we go in our separate directions.
Remi is… everything I could ask for; my best friend, and I know that I can trust her with anything. I mean, I already have. Trusted her with everything, I mean. She is the only person that knows about me hunting vampires. She found out the day after I had my first run in with them. I had come to school completely freaked out, trying to forget that it ever happened. Since forgetting was basically out of the question, I was really just trying not to let anyone see how badly I was freaking out on the inside. There’s just one thing about Remi, though. Since she’s my best friend, there is nothing I can hide from her. Nothing at all! Since she knew that something was up, she cornered me, and forced me to tell her what was going on.
“I killed a man,” I whispered.
Remi stepped back, shock clear on her face. “You did what? Wha-What do you mean, you killed a man?”
“I – I don’t know. One minute I was walking home, and then the next, someone was attacking me. Somehow I was stronger than him, and I was able to get him off me. When I looked at him, he had fangs. Fangs, Remi. This guy was not normal. Some kind of freak! I had to do something. I mean, I felt like I was going to die. I didn’t know what else to do, and there was something sharp near me so, I… I stabbed him,” As I told her, my voice was shaking.
She began pacing. “What did you do with the body?”
I shook my head. “I didn’t have to do anything.”
Her pacing ceased.
“What do you mean you didn’t have to do anything?”
“When – When, I stabbed him, he – he disappeared…dust, he turned to dust.”
Remi closed her eyes as if trying to figure something out.
“So do you mean he ran away?”
“No! It was like something out of a TV show. He turned to dust a second after the wood punctured his heart. Remi, he was a vampire.”
“He did try to bite me.”
Remi gave mealook that said, ‘you can’t be serious’.
“Oh, God, seriously Bianca, there’s no such thing as vampires. I mean, Sweetie, are you sure it wasn’t just a dream?”
I shook my head, and continued trying to convince her this was no dream.
She didn’t believe me. Three weeks later, we were walking home from the movie theatre late at night, when we were both attacked. After a stake to the heart, and the girl turning to dust, Remi believed real quickly in my hunting vampires.
“Hey, Babe,” Remi says as I get closer.
We walk into school, and to our lockers, which are on the second floor of the building. Remi and I have been in the same homeroom since we were freshman, thus causing us to always have lockers that were near each other’s. Through the loud noise from people in the hallway, I ask Remi how her weekend went.
“Boring. I didn’t do anything much other than watch my parents pack for another vacation.”
I pull a book from my locker, and shove it in my bag. I open my mouth to ask where the vacation is this time, but I’m cut off when someone rams in to my shoulder. I’m thrown back a foot, and my bag drops to the floor, books spilling out of it. I turn around and see Jennifer Rossi grinning down at me.
The gleam in her eye and the tone of her voice tells me she is anything but sorry.
“You might want to watch it with all the make up,” I say, gesturing towards her face. “Apparently you’re putting so much on it’s impairing your sight. What are you trying to cover up anyways? Botched nose job?”
How can I describe Jen? She’s tall, beautiful, and wealthy. She is also a special five-letter word that rhymes with witch. She is the head of the popular crowd, and she also dislikes me very much. After my first month in school, I found Jen trying to bully Remi. Remi didn’t need my help in defending her but I did anyways. When the principle pulled us into his office, Jen tried to pin it on Remi, when I sided with Remi, Jen took it as something else. I’ve been on her shit list ever since. She tries to make my life miserable anytime she gets. What she really doesn’t understand is, she doesn’t affect me. I really couldn’t care less about her. She and Vince also dated on and off for a few months. Three months ago, Vince broke up with her because he saw what she really was like deep down. Now, it is as if she is taking her anger at him out on me.
Jen just glares at me, seeing as she couldn’t come up with a good retort. Remi and I share an eye roll, before bend to pick up my bag. When I straighten up, Vince is holding Jen back with an arm around her waist.
“Leave her alone,” Vince says, his voice low and intimidating.
She looks to me for a moment before rolling her eyes.
“Ugh, fine. I have better things to do anyways,” she says, and turns on her heel, taking half the people in the hallway with her.
Vince walks over to Remi and me. The two greet each other, before Vince asks, “Hey, Remi. Mind if I talk to my sister for a moment?”
Remi shakes her head. “See you in class,” she says, before turning in the other direction.
I close my locker, and slide my backpack onto my left shoulder.
“What’s up?” I ask Vince as we walk towards my class.
“Sorry about her,” he says.
“Don’t worry about it. I don’t really care. I just find it funny. Considering she’s in love with you, and that I’m your sister, you would think she would be nice to me to get on your good side.”
Vince shakes his head and scoffs. “She’s not in love with me. She actually might hate me. I broke up with her and she just not used to being the one getting dumped. Being mean to you is her way of getting to me.”
“Oh, well, isn’t she cool.”
He chuckles. “Don’t let her get to you.”
“No problem. I really couldn’t care less about her. You have practice today right?”
“Yup, but practice is going to be about a hour late since Homecoming is coming up. Just in case you want to walk rather than wait.”
“I’ll think about it. I’ll probably just hang out with Remi until it’s over.”
Vince opens his mouth to say something but his attention turns to a guy walking past.
“Yo! Chase! What’s up, man?”
A tall boy, with hair that’s a cross between dark brown and jet-black hair, stops mid stride and turns to Vince. He smiles and they do a manly jug/ handshake thing.
“Hey, Dude. What’s up?” He comes closer, and I recognize him immediately. He’s the hot guy who sits next to me in first period. He was also on the football team with Vince awhile back… that is until he told his coach to shove it where the sun don’t shine, and then he got kicked off the team. He’s also been gone from school for like a week.
“Hey, Bianca,” He says, giving me a quick look over, a smiling tugging at the corner of his lips.
“Hey,” I reply, coolly.
I turn back to Vince.
“I’ll see you after practice, Vin.”
I hope you enjoyed this sample! If you want to read more please click on the link at the beginning of the post. Happy reading! XD -Catherine Kos