• The air in the tent was like a warm blanket against Ari's skin, and though she couldn't see it, she knew the sun lit the open tent. Ari was 19 now, and that made it seven years since the accident that had made her blind.

    Ari sighed, carefully standing and walking towards the tent's door.

    "You okay Ari?" came a voice from beside her. Though she couldn't see, she easily recognized the voice of her best friend, Merla, who was constantly helping her.

    "Oh, I'm perfectly fine!" Ari reassured her friend, alowing Merla to link arms and lead her off towards an unknown destination. "Just something doesn't feel right, like something bad's going to happen."


    The three heavy-set black horses silently plodded up towards a well hidden camp, a demon leading the horses through the trees. The sun was halfway up in the sky, but through the trees, it could've been night. One of the foot soldiers, a young demon that could see like a cat through the darkness, led the others through the dense trees.

    "Right through here," the demon hissed, he only spoke in hushed tones.

    "You're sure that the shape-shifter is here?" the leader replied.

    "Yes, of course I am sure!" the demon whipped around, glaring at the horse-back-rider with his electric green eyes. "You question me again, and I'll-"

    "You'll what? Huh? Kill me? Then what? Edward will hunt you down and make you pay, and you know that," the leader replied smugly, using fear to keep himself alive. The demon could easily take him down.

    The demon snarled and turned back to his hunting, using his powers to locate the sifters.

    "Here, right here, there's one right now!" the demon said, pulling back a sturdy tree to reveal the small, sunny camp, several figures, including two young women, walking unawaredly around.

    "Which one? There's several people walking around over there," the leader reminded the demon.

    "That one," he pointed at Ari and Merla. "The one with black hair," he said, describing Ari.

    "Alright, we wait until night and then we move," the leader said.


    The sun had finally set behind the horizon and fires were built.

    Ari was still being led around be Merla, who was constantly chatting with the other members of the camp.

    Ari sighed tiredly, "Mer, can I sit down? Come on, you can still walk around!"

    "Okay, come on," Merla said, carefully leading her to a fallen tree. "You sure?"

    "Yes I'm sure. Just let me sit and you can keep on with whatever." Ari gladly sat down on the large tree. She smiled, finally a chance to sit down! Ari's feet ached from walking around and tripping now and then.

    "Okay then, I'll be catching up with Tamra if you need me." Ari listened to the sound of Merla's footsteps move away from her.

    Ari sat and listened to the sounds of the camp; people were laughing and talking and the birds were singing in the trees. Ari new it was night now because the sun was no longer warming her face or back.

    Suddenly, she heard strange sounds behind her, like footsteps of a cat.

    Strong fingers wrapped around her throat, cutting off her air. "Stand up," wispered an unfamiliar, scratchy voice.

    Ari struggled to her feet, trying to breathe. Her eyes stung and her lungs were on fire. "What do you want with me?" she gasped, clawing at the demon's tightening fingers.

    "Demon, release her," the leader said, dismounting. "We're here to take you to Edward." The demon let go of his hold on her neck and watched as the other two riders dismounted.

    "Better not run away, little shifter," the demon said smiling and kicking at the dark soil.

    "I can't, you stupid-" Ari started to retort.

    "Watch your tongue!" the demon snarled, slapping Ari across her right cheek.

    "Do...not...harm the master's prize!" the leader said. Then he turned towards Ari, who was rubbing her reddened cheek, "What do you mean that you 'can't' runaway?"

    "Are you kidding? Have you not realized that I'm blind? I haven't even been able to shift since I was twelve. You can't shift when you can't see," she said.

    "You can't shift?" one of the other riders asked.

    "No," she admitted.