I suppose before I tell you about how I was eaten alive maybe I should explain how I got into this mess. To do that though I’m going to go a little further back. My name is Wes Parker and I am 17 years old. I’m young, I know, but I’ve been doing this since I was 11 so I’m used to it.
My parents were killed by werewolves. As you can imagine I have a strong hatred toward them. I’m sure you wondered how I could go up against these monsters, it’s because I am one of them. I don’t eat people or anything but I can certainly hold my own. I’m what’s called a paladin. I am strong, fast and my senses are heightened like crazy. I started to feel it all take effect a couple weeks before the werewolves attacked us.
Ever since there have been monsters, there have been paladins. We fight against them and protect the world from things you could never imagine. When my parents were murdered, a paladin named Drake saved me and told me about everything. He taught me how to fight and gave me my weapons. I spent three years with him. He told me that typically a paladin has parents that are also paladins, but mine weren’t. That surprised him. Then just like my parents he was killed, but by ghouls—you’ll find out what they are eventually—and I barely made it out alive. I’ve been on my own ever since.
I travel the country back and forth, hunting these awful creatures and saving your behind almost every night. I scour the Internet and papers, tabloids mostly, and investigate weird murders and disappearances, but really we are drawn to each other. I can sense them and they know when I am near, and when a paladin comes into their power it’s like a two-ton magnet. That is why the werewolves came after us.
Anyway, enough back-story. I was somewhere in South Dakota and had just got done clearing a town full of harpies and I caught wind of a string of disappearances in Indiana. Normally that may seem like any other day for me but there were five people in less than two weeks. That meant there was a large nest and I needed to get down there fast.
I hopped onto my motorcycle and let the tire spin out as I moved forward. Ten minutes into the drive the gaslight went off. I pulled into a station. I guess I should tell you how I get around all over the place if I don’t have a job. Drake had given me a credit card when I met him and told me not to worry about using it, so I don’t. Every time I slide the card it goes through and no one ever asks any questions. I can always pull out cash too so I pretty much have unlimited funds. After the tank was full it was back to the road, heading to the vampires in Indiana.
When I got to the town I didn’t bother looking at the sign, because I could feel that I was in the right spot. The only problem with being able to sense them was that it wasn’t an exact science. I knew they were around but I couldn’t pinpoint exactly where they were, which meant I was going to have to ask around. I’m 17 so most people don’t take me too seriously, and that made it harder for me to get the answer. I couldn’t pretend to be an agent or anything, not yet at least.
The town was an absolute dump but that was an ongoing theme with all of the monsters that I hunted. I didn’t mind. I was used to it. There were rundown buildings and cracks all over the sidewalks. I needed to find someone close to one of the missing people so I could track down where they could be. I took out my phone and looked at the pictures of the people again. That’s when I noticed a girl walking around posting flyers. I walked up her.
The poster was of one of the missing persons.
“Who’s that?” I asked.
She looked at me for a second. I had short dark hair, a scruffy face and wore a leather jacket. I probably didn’t look very inviting. She was short with jet-black hair and looked no older than 16. She was pretty.
“You’re not from around here,” she pointed out.
“Just visiting,” I confirmed. I put out my hand. “Wes.” She did the same and we shook.
“Elaine. This is Penny, my best friend.”
“What happened to her?”
She looked like she was going to cry. “We were attacked.”
“I don’t know. We were outside of town at the old warehouse. Seniors dared us to go out there and if we didn’t do it we would be ridiculed.”
“Why would you need to be dared?”
“No one goes out there,” she told me. “It’s haunted.”
“So what happened?” I asked her.
“I…never mind.” She didn’t trust me.
Just then a car pulled up and four guys jumped out.
“This guy bothering you?” one of them asked Elaine. He was tall and looked like someone who deserved a punch in the face.
“Go away John,” she replied.
“What do you want?” he asked me.
“We’re just talking,” I reasoned.
“Not anymore. Go.”
“We’re not done.”
“You can go away or I can make you go away,” he threatened me.
Inside I was laughing so hard I that I had a very hard time holding back the smile on my face. So I didn’t.
“I’d like to see you try,” I egged him on. I wasn’t going to let this jerk strong-arm me. He had no idea who he was messing with.
He looked back and forth between his friends and they all laughed. That is when he whipped around and swung his fist at me…