This club is weird as hell.
I mean, I suppose I should've been expecting this, when Amy invited me out here - her, Jack, and me, all hanging out at some half-trendy goth club that couldn't decide if it wanted to be a poetry slam, a dance hall or a bunch of people hanging around smoking cloves and ignoring each other. Amy's in the restroom and Jack's being all antisocial and weird like he usually is.
This club sucks.
I'm about to say as much to Jack when I see a flash of red hair on the other side of whatever the hell it is they're calling their dance floor. I look closer and it turns out the face attached to that red hair is looking right at me - and it's gorgeous. Long, dark red hair falling down to the middle of her back, deep green eyes, a twitchy, witchy little smile. She looks Irish, or maybe it's Scottish, or maybe I don't really care, because she's crooking a finger at me to come and sit at her table. I tell Jack I'm getting up ("Whatever Pal") and head over without a second thought, downing my Mountain Dew on the way over like it makes me look bad ass.
When I get closer I realize she didn't even make an attempt to fit in; she's in black biker leather with blood-red accents, metal-shod combat boots that go up to her knees and fingerless gloves with thick metal studs. It's hot as hell in this damn club but she hasn't even bothered to take off her jacket. She looks like she's over twenty, and the bottle of whiskey at her table kinda backs that up.
"Took you long enough kid," she says with a grin. "Take a seat. Whiskey?"
I can feel the heat rising in my face and manage to stammer something about only being seventeen, which just makes her laugh. I'm not entirely certain when I started sitting, but she's putting a shot glass in my hand and I'm tipping it back hesitantly. The whiskey burns on the way down.
"You got a name?"
"P-Pallas," I manage to stammer out, feeling like a dumbass. "But my friends call me Pal."
She laughs again and I'm starting to wonder why she even asked me over here when she says, "You know that's a girl's name, right?"
The accusation snaps me out of my embarrassment with a startled, "What?"
"Yeah, Pallas. It's another name for Athena. She was a pretty big player back in the day, y'know. Still is, depending on who you ask."
A pentagram necklace winks at me from just above her bust and I nod a little bit, not wanting to offend her. I flick my eyes back up to hers and her smile widens until I can see teeth. I swallow, "You got a name?"
"Kristina, thanks for asking." She pours me another shot, "Want one?"
"You trying to get me drunk?"
She slides it across the table at me, "Yeah, actually. Looks like I might be a little late on that, though."
"What do you -" As I'm turning to look at whatever she's looking at, I realize that the music's stopped, and so has most everyone on the dance floor. I see Amy come out of the bathroom with a confused look on her face and Jack asleep, of all things, at our table.
Everyone in the club is looking directly at me.
"You're gonna want to get behind cover kid," she says casually before getting up, grabbing me by the shoulders and depositing me roughly behind the bar.
I'm about to protest I see one of the goth kids from the dance floor step forward and snarl, "You cannot protect him from all of us, Kinslayer. You will die here!"
Kristina smiles a wicked, savage grin that I have to look away from. I regret it almost immediately; everyone in the club but my two friends is in the midst of sprouting fur and claws and growing to huge proportions like some bad werewolf flick.
A small part of my mind says, Right, you're in a bad werewolf flick. You're gonna die, Pal.
The one that spoke lunges forward only to get swatted aside by some blurred movement from Kristina that I barely even see; one moment she's smiling, the next moment there's blood all over the place and she's tossing aside the mangled wreckage of a solid oak chair. There's dead silence over the club for a moment or two.
Then it's broken by a primal yell that sends my mind reeling and hurts my ears.
"COME ON THEN!"
She moves hellishly fast, ducking low and sinking a fist into a werewolf's gut. Bone cracks, and then blood gushes out in a red torrent, flooding the dance floor. Without missing a beat she grabs onto something inside her victim and lifts her up bodily before bringing her crashing down like a hammer onto another of her furred kin. Bones break with sickening force and I feel my gorge rise, but the sound snaps the werewolves out of their trance and they descend on Kristina in a howling pack.
She backhands one and his neck twists so fast it snaps. A tooth flies behind the bar with me, but I ignore it, too engrossed by watching six-inch claws scrape against her leather jacket and throw up sparks from it like it's plate steel, not even leaving a scratch. She throws up her forearm to prevent one from biting her in the face and I watch as its fangs shatter against her jacket. A vicious twist breaks that neck too.
She's laughing, as gleeful and carefree and terrifying as an avatar of Death.
One of them tries to jump over her to get to me and she catches it by its ankles and slams it down into a steel table. The table and the werewolf's entire muzzle explode, showering blood and bits of bone around it, and she swings the corpse like a club to scatter the lycantheropes around her before throwing it out a window without even looking twice. Her foot snaps upwards and then stomps like she's kicking a door in and one of them catches it in the chest; the bones collapse, leaving a boot-shaped hole that wells with arterial blood.
I vomit onto my shoes.
There's not a lot of werewolves left at this point and the four that are still there look like they'd rather not do this. She doesn't give them a choice, feinting at one and then snapping a kick at another's crotch. As he doubles over in pain she drives her knee into his ribs, collapsing his entire right side and forcing him to cough blood. She drops the lycantherope and picks up a chair, hurling it at a lunging werewolf so hard it carries across the room and out of an unbroken window. The two that are left flee, and Kristina gives a savage yell of victory, a scream of triumph far, far older than civilized thought.
After an eternity, she walks through the thickening pools of blood to me and offers me a hand. Numbly, I let her lift me out from behind the bar.
"Sorry about that kid," she says very quietly, her voice hard, almost regretful. "I really wish you didn't have to see that."
"Wh-who are you?"
She looks away, not quite able to hide her shame. "They call me the Kinslayer, and right now, I'm your protector. Come on, we've gotta get cleaned up. The cops will be here soon."