Love & War (The Arcadia Falls Chronicles: Book 1) by Jennifer Malone Wright
YA paranormal*e-book novella*Publisher: Self (December 2012)
This is the FREE part of the prequel series, The Vampire Hunter’s Daughter that I like to always let everyone know about.
The Vampire Hunter’s Daughter: Part 1
A war is brewing between the hunters and the vampires and Chloe is determined to strike against the vampires before they have a chance to attack the hunter community.
While Chloe tries to convince the hunter community, and most especially tries to convince Drew, that they should move against the vampires first instead of waiting for an attack, the group of new friends—Oscar, Alice, Drew, Chloe and Christina—are distracted by news reports of a vigilante who is saving innocent humans against what can only be vampire attacks. Fearing this vigilante will cause unwanted attention that will expose the vampire-hunter community with each person he rescues, the group attempts to discover who this mysterious potential vampire hunter is.
When they catch up with him, the group learns a shocking revelation that might just change everything for everyone in Arcadia Falls, but will have the most profound impact on Chloe herself.
The Arcadia Falls Chronicles is the continuation of The Vampire Hunter’s Daughter. Following the format of The Vampire Hunter’s Daughter, The Arcadia Falls Chronicles is serialized into several novella-length stories.
Sometimes, when the sun goes down, I stare out the window of our house and wonder how much of the city beyond our community is being ravaged by vampires. How many people will die? How many will become newborn vampires?
I know I am not strong enough to kill them all… but that won’t stop me from trying.
The next chapter in my life has begun.
I received this journal as a gift from Oscar for Christmas this year and decided it would be a good place to chronicle the events of my life. Who knows what will happen to the hunters after this is all over? If it ever is all over. I feel like there should be some documentation of how things went down.
So here you have it: The life of Chloe Kallistrate, in my own words.
I never thought there was anything special about me. Actually, I still don’t, but apparently, because I'm the distant offspring of angels and demigods, there is something in my DNA that creates what I truly am: a vampire hunter.
Yeah, a vampire hunter. From angels and demigods. Un-freaking-believable.
It seems, a long time ago, there was a warrior angel sent to rid the world of vampires. This warrior angel, during his time on earth, found love with a warrior woman. The warrior woman was a killer, too. She was a hunter, the daughter of Artemis, Goddess of the Hunt.
Yes, I know. Artemis. Like… from mythology.
It’s true; I'm a distant descendent of Artemis, and more directly, her daughter, Sostrate. I know this because I’ve met Sostrate. She has visited me on more than one occasion. I can’t say I look forward to her visits all that much. The last time she appeared, she told me a war loomed between the hunters and the vampires, that the hunters needed to train even harder.
Oh, it gets better. Not only am I carrying on the bloodlines of angels and demigods, but I just happen to be a dhampir, too!
What is a dhampir? Oh, that is the best tidbit of all. Remember when I said I was a vampire hunter? Well, that part of me is from my mother’s side. She fell in love with one of those we are supposed to hate the most: a vampire.
Out of that lovely relationship, I was born.
My father’s name was Trevor. My mother apparently loved him more than she loved killing vampires, because they had me.
That is where the story gets really strange. Right, like it wasn't strange enough.
My mother was born in an exclusive and unique gated community, properly named Arcadia Falls. The community is unlike any other of which I have ever heard. It's a vampire-hunter community. There, vampire hunters are born, and they train to kill, pretty much from the day they learn to walk. Only in Arcadia Falls can one find people strolling down the street with loaded guns and crossbows strapped to their backs.
This community is a peaceful, mountainous place. It is our safety from the demons on the outside.
I love Arcadia Falls. I love our house, where I live with my grandfather, my mother's father, who I didn't meet for the first time until after my mother was killed. I love sleeping in my mother’s childhood room, and I love that I am surrounded by others who cannot claim to be normal.
On the inside of the protective wall that surrounds us is our little town, just like any other town one might come across. We have a grocery store, a video store, even a bakery and coffee shop. Hunters’ homes cover the expanse of forested hills that make up Arcadia Falls, and the hunters rarely need to leave unless they are on missions.
I know my mother loved this place. She was one of the most renowned hunters among them. Trevor claimed, even after he met his final death, that he loved my mother, but that love did not guarantee he would love me. I only know this story as it passed Trevor’s lips, but I can see how it would be true. He fell in love with my mother, who left the community to live with him. She soon became pregnant with me. Apparently, he was ecstatic over the announcement of my birth. My mother must have been relieved, but she ran from him before I was born, for reasons I didn’t know until I was fifteen.
Why would a woman leave a man with whom she was having a child? If he was that bad, why not kill him? Who knows? All I know is that she found out his original reason for choosing her as his mate. Love, it seemed, ended up being a bonus in his case.
He bred me.
It was his plan from the very beginning, for years and years before he met her. Apparently, I was some kind of main ingredient in his make-the-vampire-become-a-day-walker recipe. Allegedly, if a vampire drinks the blood of a dhampir, who also carries the bloodlines of a vampire hunter, on the day of the dhampir’s sixteenth birthday, the vampire will forever be able to walk in the sunlight. Typically, vampires can't be in sunlight, because it kills them.
I had no idea, initially. None of us did.
My mother knew. She found out his plan and ran from him with me in her womb. That wasn’t as simple as it sounded. She hid me away for years and years. I never knew any family, I never had many friends because we moved so much, and I never knew the truth… until that horrible day.
The day Trevor had her murdered, right in front of me.
But he wasn't trying to get to her. He was trying to get to me.
That day is branded into my memory like a hot iron burning into my skin. Trevor’s goons broke in and murdered her. They tried to take me away, but I was rescued by the vampire hunters. My grandfather sensed the pain his daughter was going through and sent the rescue team. If it weren’t for them, I would have been taken and would have never known who I truly was. I would probably be dead already.
Drew had led the hunters. I remember him lifting me into his arms and telling me he was taking me someplace safe. They had brought me home, to Arcadia Falls. It was there I found out about my hunter heritage. It was also there I found my true supernatural gifts.
Yes, I have supernatural gifts, abilities, you might say. My element is fire. I can make flames appear in my hand whenever I want. Although, it wasn’t always as easy as it is now to control. It took me a long time to learn to control the flames. Though I'm much improved at wielding the power of the flame, I am still learning to control the fire within me.
Moving on with my story, my father attacked the hunters, and I decided I didn’t want to lose anyone else to his vampires. I willingly went with him, ignorant to his true plans. I lived with him for nearly a year, and shortly before my sixteenth birthday, I found out exactly why he had wanted me so badly, why he had killed my mother to obtain me: He had wanted to be a day-walker.
I tried to run but ended up a prisoner.
We escaped only because of Alice, the housekeeper who had lived with Trevor for a long time, serving him. But while I was there, she had been my friend. She betrayed her precious Trevor and helped me get out. Drew was a prisoner with me, and when we escaped, we found Oscar, who had been my tutor, and who just happens to be a siren. Oscar had been bitten almost to the point of death. We grabbed him and managed to escape, only to fight a vicious battle in the end.
In the heat of the battle, we were saved by Gavin—who was once my almost-boyfriend—who happened to be Drew’s half-brother. And Christina—Drew’s ex-girlfriend and probably one of the meanest girls I know.
It was a nasty fight, but we are all alive.
The question remains: What happens now?
What it comes down to is this:
On the day of my sixteenth birthday, Sostrate came to us and told us all to prepare for war. She said we all needed to train hard because we were on the brink of war with the vampires, a big war.
It was in that moment I realized this—whatever it was—was never going to be over. Just like my angel grandfather was sent down to rid the world of vampires, I vowed to do the same.
I am Chloe Kallistrate. I am the vampire-killing angel of death.
About the author:
Jennifer Malone Wright resides in the beautiful mountains of northern Idaho with her husband and five children. Between the craziness of taking care of her children, whose ages range from fifteen all the way down to one year, and being a homemaker, Jennifer has little time left for herself. The time she does have left, usually leading far into the night, is spent working on freelance work or her beloved fiction.
When she grew up, Jennifer always had her nose in a book. She has been writing stories and poems since grade school. This love of the written word and her strong interest in the paranormal is what has led to her first novel “The Birth of Jaiden.”
In addition to being a mother and homemaker, Jennifer is also a very proud military wife. Moving around the country for the last eleven years has made her a bit of a nomad and she finds it difficult to be in one place for too long.