Lost: Rose

Atwood Forest is untouched by the human world surrounding it. All they know is whoever enters, never returns...

Inside Atwood Forest there are one type of prey and one type of predator. The Vampire Hunter's are a race of magically blessed men and women who hunt and kill those who stray from the vampire fortress in the west of the forest. It is known that occasionally humans venture in the forest but not once has a Hunter ever been able to successfully save a human without losing their life.

A young girl is one day found on the boarder line of the Hunter and Vampire territory. She is without food, clothes, and shelter. When she is picked up by a group of Hunter's she is given the name Rose, due to a cryptic tattoo of roses embedding the skin of her back. She is without memory of who she is and where she'd come from. Trapped in a forest where a century-long war still rages on, she struggles to find the truth behind her existence in a world where everything is not as it seems...


4. Strangers

I was pushed out of the bathing room as fast as I'd been pulled into it. Leonora had pushed me out the front gently before coming out also checking both sides and prodding me in the side as if some silent sign it was safe to leave. The leather sandals she'd set on my feet protected me from the hot dirt ground as I stepped outside unsure of what to do where to go. I thought about escaping again but after my first failed attempt I guessed trying again so soon would be a waste of time, especially since Heath had seemed as though he spent a lot of him time out there, and I didn't want to get thrown into a bar-surrounded, chamber again.


I looked around for Callum as I remembered him telling me to seek him after I had bathed. He was a kind man, gentle and with a warm heart. I looked around unsure of where he could have gone, but being confused and alone was something I'd started to guess I'd have to be getting used to by now even as I began to circle the perimeter of the village. I spotted the group of girls who hissed and threw stones at me as I walked past, I stepped just nearly over the barrier causing them to flee instantly it seemed before I came back in and searched for Callum. The sun had begun to set slowly in the distance through the trees of the forest when I came to a large building filled with noises of people talking, and the fresh aroma of something that made my stomach grumble.

"Rose!" a familiar voice called out, I turned around quickly to see Callum beaming as he headed over towards me beside him another man and woman. I shrunk back, taking a small hesitant step before his face fell as if realizing my hesitation. He stopped with them a few meters from me,

"This is Warren..." he said gesturing to the man who stared at me as if with a hidden intention to kill me,

"And this is Erin" he said gesturing to the small red haired, girl I'd thought to have been older at first who also stared but more curiously. Callum stepped forward and I didn't move back before he was by my side wrapping his cloak around my shoulders his arm resting against the back of my shoulders,

"We will eat" he said gently as he led me towards the building I'd been looking at.


Entering I looked around with slight curiosity and confusion as the noise died down and the eyes laid themselves on myself as we entered and headed to the center of the room a single table filled with food uninhabited was laid out almost as if especially for us. I continued my walk steadily but patiently, matching that of Callum's before we sat down at the table the woman and man sitting with us.

"I'm starved" Callum said picking up what looked to be a leg of some sort of animal, cooked of course, and took a bite out of it.

"Are you hungry?" he asked offering another, I shook my head gently and shrank back.

"I'm sorry, but I don't think I can eat that..." I said slowly realizing this was how they fed themselves. These people. The girl gave me a small smile as I neared her and lifted up a small bowl of purple, sphere shapes and handed it to me.

"Those will be nice" she said. I took them cautiously placing the bowl on the table before lifting up one curious and setting it in my mouth froze for a second before I let my teeth sink into it. An explosion of a sweet, water-like juice took over my mouth as I chewed further before swallowing it I blinked somewhat surprised at the pleasant taste,

"What is this?" I asked picking up another before placing it in my mouth to repeat the same process. The girl giggled,

"They're grapes" she said. I nodded before eating another the juice squirting from the soft yet luscious sphere onto the white, cotton dress Leonora had made me wear. I used my finger to wipe the juice off only rubbing it into the gentle fabric before eating another,

"Where you come from, do they not eat meat and grapes?" the girl asked suddenly. I looked up from my almost empty bowl and swallowed the one in my mouth before I pondered on finding an answer,

"I... I'm not exactly sure..." I said slowly, confused pain starting to prickle at the back of my neck,

"I don't remember where I come from, what it looked like... Who I lived with or knew, who I was..." I said slowly, cautious as each word left my mouth.

"When I'd been in the woods earlier running from men in this village..." I said looking at my hands as I tried to remember,

"Someone... familiar, touched my cheek whilst I hid under a tree. A small, brushing stroke against... here..." I said lifting my hand and trailing the back of my fingers along my cheek bone feeling the sensation of familiarity once more as I reminisced over the man in the woods.


"A bloody vampire that's what it was" a voice thundered from behind, I jumped, startled at the familiar voice and spun around to see Heath. I got up and quickly backed away, a boisterous laugh escaped his lips as he neared me stepping close as I walked around the other side of the table.

"What are you?" he asked,

"She's human" Callum snarled getting up front his seat to stand straight and firmly in Heath's way. I watched as Heath's expression changed from one of anger to one of annoyance in an instant,

"What kind of human, doesn't get killed by a vampire!?" Heath growled, I looked around for some way to run but with the challenging eyes of the many others who surrounded me though still seated at their tables I knew there was no way for me to escape.

"What kind of vampire eats grapes injected with holy water?" the girl, Erin, asked from her seat.

"What!?" Callum and Heath asked both shocked, she shrugged looking up at them,

"I'd heard Callum had brought back someone from a patrol, just to make sure..." she began,

"You could have killed her!" Callum growled his eyes narrowing at Erin who shrunk back.


"Silence!" a voice echoed throughout the hall suddenly everyone getting out of their seats and bowing, all except for Health, Callum a few other men and myself. A man with a long black shirt and pants with leather boots stepped out from behind a huge chair at a single table filled with food enough to feed everyone once more in the eating room. His face was slightly wrinkled with age a scar running down his right eye his grey hair short and jaggedly cut as he sat down.

"Be seated" he commanded everyone then re-taking their seats,

"Come here my girl" he called his voice bellowing as it filled the large room, his outstretched arm and hand aimed at me. I glanced at Callum for some kind of guidance, he nodded quickly. Too quickly. I walked slowly around the other side of the table carefully eying Heath who seemed to be silently seething as I headed towards the man who'd seemed to have just called upon me, I took his hand and before I knew it he stood.

"As we all know yesterday was the anniversary of the last Moon Call..." he began, everyone looked up in awe at him as he spoke, everyone except Heath that was.

"It has been over a decade since that day had been called that name... It had also been 3 years since they took another two of our chosen partner of our people..." he continued,

"But yesterday on that day one of our young hunters on a daily patrol picked up this young, human, girl..." he said lifting up my arm causing everyone to look up with it,

"And she will..."

"Silence father" Heath's voice rang out like a blade slicing paper causing everyone to murmur as he headed up towards us.


I backed away struggling to pull my hand from the man's grasp but he held on putting out hands back down as Heath came closer,

"Son you are out of line..." he growled,

"She is a vampire!" Heath announced turning to the crowds of people snatching my hand and yanking me forward.

"Look at her eyes" he growled, using his fingers to pull up my brows forcing them open,

"She is one of 'them'..." he continued.

"Let her go Heath" Callum warned heading up towards the stage, sensing the fear in my eyes as I struggled to break free.

"Let me go..." I whispered struggling as he held me back,

"Let me go!" I screamed,

"Let me...!" The door of the room burst open and a woman with golden hair and blue eyes stood there in a long black dress her eyes seeming to blaze with anger,

"Let her go" her voice seethed with fury as she rushed forward, Heath held onto me but I could feel the shock as everyone's faces turned pale as the woman came forward and wrenched me from him bringing me close to her chest protectively, the pain in the back of my neck burned more as she did so,

"Zara?" the elderly man asked wide-eyed as he stared at the woman,

"But you were taken..." he mumbled,

"No, I didn't I ran" she said gently,

"This meeting is now adjourned, everyone leave immediately, lock it up!" Callum was calling frantically, the people beginning to shift and move and before the woman had let me go all I was released to see was the dimly lit room of empty wooden benches all lined up to face the front, no tables, no food, no people left in sight.


The woman then smiled at me as I turned to see her facing me, she was barely an inch shorter than myself though she seemed to much taller as she handed me a small, silver, shell-like object.

"Where did you..." the man began but she silenced him as she raised her hand. My hands shook as I looked at it closely,

"Open it" Heath growled angrily from where he stood. Open it...? I looked at it closely, how could I open it, it was a shell... Pressing it gently I blinked in surprise as it slowly opened a single piece of glass coming up as the top opened and stopped. I saw a girl in it, a woman... Blinking in surprise I turned my head slowly left... Then right...

"This is, me?" I asked the woman lifting a hand up to my face slightly confused.

"Yes" she said, I looked at my eyes that shined brightly and froze. They were dark red. My hands began to shake furiously before I dropped the object and flinched back as the glass shattered into a million pieces on the ground.

"You also had this with you when they found you" she said opening her hand to show me a small circle piece of metal... it shone silver though taking it gingerly in my hand as I let it glide in circles between my fingers I realized it also had little stones that glistened white and red. A familiar feeling came over me the pain still in the bottom of my neck as I slipped it onto a finger on my left hand, the one on the left beside my middle...

"A ring..." Callum said slowly as if in a trance,

"What do you see Rose?" the old man asked,

"Rubies and diamonds" Heath said as if replying for me, I looked at it closely slipping it back off as I looked around the outside then seeing a change on the inside began to inspect the inside loop of the ring...


"This doesn't make sense..." I murmured my brow furrowing,

"What do you mean?" the woman, Zara asked,

"I see..." I said slowly slipping it back on,

"Roses" I said the pain increasing I instantly began to claw at my back, as I fell to my knees.

"Rose!?" Zara asked her voice hitching an octave higher in panic,

"It's hurting... like the bars..." I whimpered, my eyes widened as Heath unsheathed a knife and I shut my eyes covering my head before I heard the cutting of fabric before the burning went away as the dress fell down on either side of my back the burning beginning to calm.

"Is that better?" Callum asked, I nodded slowly silently. A cool finger began to trace invisible lines on my back,

"What is it? What do you see?" I asked confused as a wave of nausea took over causing me to sway for a moment,

"Roses" someone replied. But by the time I'd thought about asking anything further, the world around my had turned black.

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