Hye-jung sat on the floor of the tiny corner of the house that passed for a kitchen, and cut up the boar with her knife. She was hurrying as much as she could because she was so hungry and she couldn’t wait to dig in. When she was done, she dragged out the only pot they had and lifted the animal into it with as much energy as she could muster. She then dragged the pot to the fireplace and placed it over the fire to cook. She took a deep breath, she was already exhausted from pulling herself around.

“This won’t do, I need a stick.” She said and went outside to find one. After getting her stick, she went back into the house to check the food and cook some rice while waiting for her father to return.

Gwi walked back to the tree he had been sitting in, his mind completely occupied by the girl he had seen. He laughed incredulously, he was highly amused that a tiny scrap of a human, a girl no less, had such gumption to walk around the forest at such an hour of the night. He was so wrapped up in his thoughts that he hadn’t noticed Hae-soo was standing at the foot of the tree.

“Where have you been?” Hae-soo asked.

“I went for a walk. It sure took forever for you to get here. Where have you been?” Gwi asked in return.

“It doesn’t matter, we must leave at once. I’ve gotten wind of a vampire attack on the other side of town.” Hae-soo said and began to walk away.

Gwi was annoyed, Hae-soo never told him anything. It was always ‘we have to protect the humans’ whenever Gwi asked him a question.

“I swear, one of these days…” Gwi muttered as he followed his teacher.

“I heard that.” Hae-soo replied.

Hye-jung was getting tired of waiting for her father, so she served up her food and sat down to eat without waiting for him any longer. Just as she was about to take a bite, her father swung open the door and walked in.

“Hye-jungah.” He called as he came in.

“Where have you been abeoji?” Hye-jung asked.

“I was at the market, trying to see if I could get us something to eat.” Her father paused at the sight of the food in front of her and gasped. “Have you been out hunting again?”

“I had to find us something to eat!” She retorted.

“Haven’t I told you not to go to the forest at night? It’s very dangerous out there.” Her father said worriedly.

She scoffed. “That’s exactly what that man said. I don’t know what you’re all talking about, besides I always have my knife with me and I do know how to fight and defend myself.”

“What man?”

“It doesn’t matter abeoji, let’s eat. The food is getting cold. You’re going to have to get your food yourself, my ankle is hurt.”

“How-how did you hurt your ankle?” Her father asked, dropping down to her side and holding her bandaged foot.

“It doesn’t matter. At least, I won’t be going hunting for a while so you don’t have to worry about that anymore.”

“Hye-jungah, since when did you start keeping so many secrets from me?” Her father asked. She turned her head away from him and pushed a piece of meat into her mouth. She didn’t feel like telling him about the mysterious stranger yet.

Later that night, Hye-jung laid in bed unable to sleep. She kept recalling the face of the man that had helped her. When he had first approached, she was scared of him but she was also intrigued by him. It must have been the way the moonlight hit his face, it lit him up in a way that he looked like a being not from this world. When he came close to her, she thought her heart was going to explode from her chest. For a second, she thought she had seen his eyes flash fire and then he reared back from her as if he had hit some kind of force-field. Even as he carried her, she had studied his face. His perfect-looking face, with the high nose, the arrogant forehead and the jaw so sharp she was sure it would cut her if she touched him. She wondered who he was, and as sleep finally came over her, she thought it would be nice to see him again.

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