Chapter 2


Mom and Dad were the first people who believed in me. They told me that I could do anything with perseverance and self-confidence. I wasn’t confident in myself, especially in school but the two of them gave me the motivation to do so. Now that they’re gone, I don’t know what to feel anymore. I lost my interest in the things that were fun for me before.

I stayed inside our new house for a whole week. I read a book but got constantly distracted by the noise of children playing outside. Jay and Felix weren’t home as much as I do. The only time I see both of them was either in the evening or in the early morning before they go to their respective jobs.

In one week, I finished four fantasy books and a contemporary book that made me cry. It wasn’t a sad book, but I remembered Mom and Dad when I read it. I miss them so much.

When my brothers left for their work, I followed their advice to live my life. The outside world was surprising to me. It felt like I was a bat who stayed inside a cave for a few days. The sun shone above my head and the heat of it kissed my face.

I supposed that the children were already at school because I couldn’t find their traces around. We have a few neighbors beside our house. I’ve seen my brothers talking to the old woman who lives in the house a few walks from ours. I bet she’s kind enough to welcome us to our new place.

I place my hands inside my pockets and walked around the village. The time was around nine before I left the house and left my phone inside. When I’m walking around our old town, I don’t use my phone unless it's too noisy outside. Then I will play some music or audiobooks.

Having a self-help audiobook in the background made me feel inspired. Though sometimes I don't follow their tips and rules. The thing about this new town was that it wasn’t too hot during these hours. Maybe it was the season that I forgot about. It wasn’t that far from our old town that’s why I supposed that they have the same climate.

I stopped walking when I heard a woman calling my voice. I looked up behind me and saw the old woman who talked to my brothers the moment I arrived in this place. I strode towards it because our parents never taught us to snob people, especially an old woman.

“Are you the daughter of Nora and Jack?” I nodded as she spoke the name of our parents. How did she know about my parents? Were my parents here before?

“Do you know my parents? And my brothers?”

Her crumpled old face, which I thought she was already in her seventies or nineties, nodded. “Of course, I know them. They lived here before.”

Our parents lived in this town before? Why they didn’t tell me about that? Since the day that I can remember, we didn’t move out from our home and never visited this place before.

“Have you known my brothers before?”

She nodded again. “They were cute little boys back then, but now they’ve grown so much and become handsome like your father. When your parents weren’t around, I was the one who look after them. As far as I remember, you weren’t born when that happened.”

Of course, I don’t exist at that moment. If I do, I would’ve remembered it. If we lived here before and we had a home the moment we got here, then the house where we’re living right now was ours? I never heard my brothers talking about rent and such.

“How am I supposed to call you? What is your name?” I changed the topic. I don’t want to cry while thinking about my parents. I don’t want my mind to wander around on the details my family didn’t tell me.

“I don’t tell my name that easy, young woman. But the people in here, including my grandchildren and children, call me Nana. They said that I am the oldest woman in the town of Dusk and Dawn.”

“Right, Nana.” It is boring to talk to an old woman if I cannot share things that only teenagers could understand. She also speaks gradually. My attention span, which is as short as a TikTok couldn’t handle waiting for her response. “I’ll tour around the town again so I could familiarize myself with it.”

“Sure, young woman. If you need someone to talk to, don’t be afraid to talk to Nana.” She laughed weirdly and it vibrated my nerves inside. “Also, don’t stay outside before the sun sets.”


“When the night creeps in, ghosts and monsters come alive.”

I’m not afraid of ghosts and monsters. They weren’t real. If there’s a thing that I should be afraid of, it must be a weird old woman who has a creepy laugh. She sounded like a witch with her laugh.

I got back inside my house. Instead of staying in my room, I fetch my phone, AirPods, and the current book that I’m reading before I continue to walk around the town. I wish I could find a perfect place to read and hang out alone.

What I like about this town was that there were trees everywhere just like what we had back then. The fresh air surrounded me and made me breathe easier. As a nature lover, I tend to enjoy these kinds of places.

The town has cool and clean air and a great path to run with. There were small stores of different products and foods but I didn’t bring any money with me so I can’t buy any of those.

Whenever I have an award during middle school, my two brothers would bring me to a restaurant to celebrate. Jay would show his appreciation of me more obvious than Felix, who’ll make me feel that I was appreciated and loved. Nowadays, many teenagers felt that they weren’t loved by their families. They don't understand how each family would show their appreciation and love.

Jay would tell me amazing things and how much he loves me. I don’t see that as fake because that was his unique method of showing how he loves me so much. Omit, Felix will have a deeper connection to me that would make me feel loved. He’s the most protective person in our family and I could go into a war with him as my defend. Both of my parents materialize their affection. When I won a spelling bee, they bought an expensive Pilot pen. I don’t know why I wanted to have an expensive pen back then.

After a few minutes of walking, I was amazed that there was a high school in here. The sign said that it is the community academy for the teenagers of this town. It is smaller compared to the school I was attending, but I get that since the town wasn’t big as well.

They were students passing by and they looked me in the eyes. Their stares shivered me down through my spine, making me avoid my eyes on them. Weird and scary. Are they eating a person? Probably not but their stares said so.

I ignored them and ran for more minutes. I hadn’t seen a huge house or mansion in this town. Most of the houses were only covering a small area and didn’t have a second floor. Back in our old town, people seemed to brag about their status by having the tallest building and largest lot.

As I ran more, the houses on the sides of the pathway were disappearing one by one. It looked like a crooked mouth, not having teeth on some parts of it. Then, it completely disappeared when I’ve come into a place full of trees and the pathway ended. The vivid green grasses were scattered on the ground, and this place has the freshest air ever.

I breathe heavily, letting the oxygen pump inside my lungs. The ground was clean and I sat near the river, leaning my back on the bark of the tree. My back tends to ache when I don’t have something to lean on. That’s why in my life, I tend to lean on my brothers.

I pulled the book from my tote bag. Before I open it from where the bookmark was placed, I gulped water to refresh myself.

Then I started reading.

When the moon was patched on the dark night, I went to my windowsill and pulled down the pink curtains, blossomed with patterns of flowers. I was about to sleep when I thought about that. Leaving the windows unprotected is dangerous for stalkers, though I wasn’t a hundred percent sure that there are stalkers in this place.

I ate my sleepyness. Before I fully covered my windows, Nana’s lights outside sparkled. A man was standing, knocking at their door. He must be Nana’s son or grandson, at least he’s connected to Nana. His back was a statue. When he glanced over to my direction, I was able to see his face. His sharped-edged jaw was a masterpiece, carved by a known sculptor. His eyes striking yet puffy. And the way he smiled, I cannot emphasize it’s enough. We got a boy-next-door type neighboor!

I immediately closed the curtains out of embarrassment. I wish that guy wasn’t thinking I was stalking him. Seeing him was an accident. I didn’t expect to see her there. If Nana has a family with that kind of look, I wonder how gorgeous she looked like when she was younger.

“Get a life, Cath,” Felix said one morning while we’re having breakfast.

“I’m alive.”

“That isn’t what I mean.” Felix raised his voice. 

Jay stopped chewing his food. “He wants you to go outside and socialize with other people. Make friends with other teenagers. You can’t spend your life forever inside.”

Jay has a sense and I know Felix only wanted me to enjoy my life after our parents died. They said that they were already buried in the cemetery. They didn’t tell me so I could pay a visit. They said it was too for me. What’s with the word dangerous that it’s overused by my two brothers?

“I don’t need friends. I need justice for Mom and Dad.”

“We can’t,” Felix muttered. He stood from his chair and his face got closer to my face. The spaces between our faces were less than an inch. “The thing that killed them werewolves.”

No one can imprison a wolf. I knew that was the thing he wanted to point out. I stayed silent for the rest of our morning. Before my two brothers leave, they kissed my forehead. They told me that I have to enroll in the community college for the next semester. They were the ones who processed my papers and I have to wait for a call to attend the school.

School sucks. Since my brothers didn’t want me to stay inside forever, it is also an escape from what happened to my poor parents.

That night, I didn’t have the choice to help them. What I did was listen to their screams and groans caused by pain. Every time that moment struck my mind, I can’t help but let the salty tears make traces on my cheeks.

I’m sorry, Mom and Dad. I could’ve done better for both of you.

Related chapters

Latest chapter Protection Status