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|The Alpha: Birth to Present|
|Name:||The Alpha: Birth to Present|
|Created by:||The Tim Man|
|Number of chapters:||12|
|Original run:||22 March 2014|
The Alpha: Birth to Present is the biography of Anton Vargheim IV from birth to present. It is written in third person, from the point of view of Anton.
- Anton Vargheim III
- Elizabeth Vargheim
- Ursula Vargheim
- Tina Vargheim
- Leonard Vargheim
- Ryan Vargheim
- Bryan Vargheim
- Atheia Vargheim
- Chloe Vargheim
- Reginald Troyson
- Maria Troyson
- Thomas Troyson
Chapter 1 - Squeals and ScreamsEdit
Sacred Spleen Hospital - Howlgard Branch
A loud wail rang out through the halls of the hospital. As one became used to the sound, one could recognise that this particular scream came not from an unfortunate patient in terrible pain, but the joy-inducing cry of a newborn.
And so it was that day that a very special child had been born.
This was the first child of Anton Vargheim III and Elizabeth Mannheim. Tears trickled down the faces of both parents as the crying of the baby subsided and as he was quietly wrapped in a cloth, before being handed to his mother.
"He's so... beautiful," Elizabeth said. She turned to Anton. "What should we call him, Anton?"
The father grinned cheekily. "Anton!"
Chapter 2 - Gurgles and CriesEdit
Three years later, Vargheim Manor.
The baby Anton had grown into a toddler. He gurgled enthusiastically as he played with his little blocks and toys. He had already learned to walk, much to the amazement of his parents. He still, though, was far from obtaining the ability to communicate his needs and desires through words. He still used cries and wails for that.
Anton III and Elizabeth didn't mind. They sat on the couch in their living room. Elizabeth lay her head on her husband's shoulder. They both smiled as they lovingly watched their first child play with blocks. Elizabeth was already pregnant with their second child. This time, it was a girl. They named her Ursula.
The boy got bored of his blocks and moved on to search for something else to play with. What he found was this very curious object. It could flip open and there were bits of it connected to the back. There were lots of little symbols and pictures. He found them very interesting and squealed in delight as he flipped the pieces of this newfound thing back and forth. His parents laughed. He had suddenly taken a great interest in books, just like his father.
The next morning...
Little Anton Vargheim IV was now seated in his chair. Elizabeth then put a plate of baby food in front of him. He believed it was gourmet. As he gratefully and quite messily wolfed down the contents of his meal, his mother and father sat at the table and the butler, Nestor McCray, walked out carrying two plates before setting them before the younger Anton's parents. The two then began eating. When he had finished, he sat quietly in his chair, waiting to be let out. While he was waiting, he observed his parents.
Their food looked very different to his. While his was semi-liquified, brownish-red stuff, their plate of food consisted of a piece of what looked like crusty bread, a few tube-like pieces of meat, along with a pile of little red, bead-like things finished with a white circular object that had a smaller yellow circle in the middle. And instead of eating with their hands as he did, they ate with shiny objects with sharp points on the ends. His parents looked up while they ate and smiled at him. He found himself smiling in return.
A few hours later, he felt the urge to let it all go again. He knew that the smell produced was undesirable to his parents so he attempted to resist, but it happened anyway. The discomfort of squishy, disgusting sludge in his pants made him scream and cry. His father, with a peg on his nose (quite literally), immediately rushed his son to the bathroom, whereupon he disposed of his dirty diaper, bathed him, and put a new one on.
The next time he felt his bladder was about to let loose, he rushed to his mother and gave her a tug. He then pointed to his diaper. She then smiled, admiring his intelligence, and picked him up before moving to the bathroom. She removed his diaper and sat him down on the potty. He let go in relief.
Anton gurgled in ecstasy as his grandfather, Anton Vargheim II, covered his own face with his hands and then flipped them open to reveal it again.
"Peek-a-boo!" he cried jovially. His grandson laughed. Anton II, an adult werewolf verging on eldership, then stood up with the toddler in his arms.
"And up you go!" he said. The younger Anton shot up into the air. He squealed in delight before dropping back down into Anton II's arms. "...And down you come!"
Chapter 3 - Friends and ToysEdit
Anton was now in the car with his mother and father. He now knew how to talk and he could understand basic sentences.
"You're going to meet a new friend, Anton," Elizabeth had said.
They arrived in front of a small house on the northern coast of Howlgard's main island.
Elizabeth rang the doorbell. Eventually a tall man opened the door.
"Why, if it isn't Anton and Elizabeth!" exclaimed the man. "I haven't seen you two since your wedding! How's it been?"
"Hey Reginald," Elizabeth said. "Everything's going great! In fact--"
Reginald then looked down and spotted the little tot standing beside his parents.
"Hello! What have we here?" he bent down. "You look so cute!" he stood back up. "Is he your son?"
"Yes, he is, actually," said the older Anton. "We named him Anton as well."
Reginald laughed. "Oh, rich people and their naming antics!" He then realised that the Vargheims were standing outside. "Oh, where are my manners? Come in, come in!"
Anton and his mother and father walked into Reginald Troyson's home. Reginald gave them a little tour.
"This is the living area," he said. There was a boy watching television.
"Tom! Remember Mr and Mrs Vargheim? You met them when you were little!"
Tom stood up and walked over.
"Hi Mr and Mrs Vargheim!" Tom said, shaking Anton's father's, then his mother's, hands. "It's good to see you again!"
"It's good to see you've grown into a healthy boy!" the older Anton said. Tom smiled. He then bent down and introduced himself to the toddler beside the two newcomers.
"Hi, little guy! I'm Tom. What's your name?"
"An-chon!" the little Anton gurgled. Tom giggled.
"Tom," Reginald hollered from the kitchen. "Don't you have a scouts meeting right about now?"
"Oh yeah," Tom said. He ran to his room and came out several seconds later in his scouts uniform and with a backpack slung around his shoulders.
"Bye Mum, bye Dad. Nice to meet you, Mr and Mrs Vargheim! You too, Anton!"
With that, he was out the door.
Reginald came out of the kitchen with his wife. "Remember Maria?" He turned to his wife. "Their son's also named Anton."
"Well!" exclaimed Maria Troyson. "Nice to see you again!" She shook Anton and Elizabeth's hand.
"Hello, there, little one!" Maria said, looking at the little Anton. "I should just call you Junior...you look exactly like your father!"
"So, Reg, settling in well?" Elizabeth asked.
"Never better! I love how we're living so close together now! Before, when I was still in Lunar Lakes, we couldn't even talk to each other, but now..."
"We also have a girl now!" Maria said. "Same age as Anton."
"What's her name?"
"Deanna. She's learnt to walk and talk already. Isn't that adorable?"
"Certainly. Where is she?"
"In the games room."
The younger Anton had already gone ahead and found the games room. When he looked inside he saw a little girl playing with some toys.
"Uhh...," he said. "Hello."
The girl turned and looked at Anton.
"Hi!" she said cheerfully. "Come and play with me!"
Anton waddled over to where the girl was.
"I'm An-chon," he said as he sat down beside the girl. He still couldn't get his name right.
The girl giggled. "I'm Deanna."
"I can make a tall tower with the blocks," Anton said.
"Can you show me?"
Within minutes, Anton had built a relatively strong block tower of various colours.
"Wow," Deanna said in surprise. "I like you!"
Anton gave a toothy grin. He had found his first friend.
Chapter 4 - Homework and PlaygroundsEdit
Seven years later...
Seven years had come and gone. Ten-year-old Anton Vargheim IV hopped off the bus with joy as he ran to the doors of the Howlgard Academy. Everyone called it Stary School, though, as it was located on Stary Street, which in turn was named after the famous educational facility in Twinbrook.
His lifelong friend, Deanna Troyson, stepped off the bus after him. The two entered the school, chatting enthusiastically.
"I hope you've finished your homework, Anton," said Deanna.
"Of course I have," he replied. "I just have a few more maths questions, that's all."
Deanna rolled her eyes, smiling. "You know quite well Mr Kendrick and unfinished homework don't mix."
"I know," Anton said. "Hopefully I can finish it before maths!" He winked.
As they entered their form classroom, ready to start the day, Anton and Deanna excitedly chatted about what was to come in today's lessons. Then the bell rang.
Their form teacher, Harold Watkins, eventually reversed into the classroom carrying a pile of books with two apples and a coffee mug stacked on top precariously.
"Good morning, 5B!" he greeted the class, jovial as ever. The class replied almost as enthusiastically. Mr Watkins set the pile down on his desk before carefully removing first the mug, then the apples. He placed those on the desk as well.
As he was arranging his pile into near stacks, he began calling out the attendance. He knew them off by heart, which was probably what happened if you had the same form class for five years in a row.
Not that there were many people in the class. Though some kids crossed the strait separating Howlgard from SimNation to attend the somewhat prestigious Academy, the number of students remained fairly small. There were only three forms in Anton's year, Year Five, and only eight students in his form class in particular.
"Here," replied Daisy Annan, the quiet girl from Barnacle Bay.
"Here," said Evan Clark, who was a musical chap from Aurora Skies.
"Here!" said Sandi French, who was from Sunset Valley. She and Her mum apparently lived with family friends, but could afford to send her here. Hmm.
"Present!" replied Sam Sekemoto, who was also from Sunset Valley.
"Here, Mr Watkins!" replied Rainer Snow, who was thought to be a bit of a clown.
"Here!" Deanna raised her hand as she called back.
"I'm here." Anton really didn't see the point of doing all this. He thought that they might as well do some more important stuff straight away.
"And last, but not least, Emily." Mr Watkins smiled.
"Here, Dad," Emily Watkins replied. She had always found it awkward that her form teacher was also her father. Despite this, she continued calling him "Dad" at school. Everyone was fine with that. Apparently, Rainer Snow had a crush on her.
"That was an awesome science lesson!" Deanna said as she and Anton stepped off the bus and walked through the gates to Anton's home, Vargheim Manor.
"You don't say! I love it when we get to blow things up," Anton replied.
Earlier, his extremely fun and awesome science teacher, Mr Hollyoaks, had given them sodium bicarbonate and vinegar. They were told to place the vinegar in a zip-lock bag and the sodium bicarbonate in a piece of kitchen towel before putting the kitchen towel into the bag, then closing it. The resulting reaction eventually produced a small, contained explosion. Of sorts.
Anton had always felt the thrill of having Mr Hollyoaks as his science teacher. He only hoped he didn't get the other science teacher next year, Dr Flourmarch, who, as his name suggested, was about as boring as a sack of flour and as strict as a drill sergeant.
As the two opened the door and walked through it, his little sister Ursula waddled to him and hugged his leg.
"An-chon!" she blubbered. He smiled, remembering how he said his name like that too when he was little. She was teething, but strangely she didn't seem to cry about it. She did have difficulty talking, though.
Anton was still amazed at how quickly she had learned to walk and talk. Faster than him, according to his parents, who were at work. Ursula had been left at home with Nestor. He ran up to Anton as he entered the kitchen in search for something he and Deanna could eat.
"Welcome home, Master Anton," he said. He called his father Mister Anton, to avoid confusion. Apparently the elderly butler referred to Anton's dad as Master as well when he was a kid. "I trust you had a good day at school?"
"Fantastic, thanks," Anton replied, rummaging through the fridge. "Nestor, is there anything for us to eat?"
"Well, there is some Thermidor that I made earlier," said Nestor, "but I'm not sure if your friend would--"
"I LOVE Thermidor!" Deanna cried.
"Well, then," Nestor said. "I'll bring out the Thermidor."
As Deanna walked away to seat herself at the table, Anton whispered in Nestor's ear, "Her name's Deanna."
"Oh," Nestor replied.
A half-hour later, Anton and Deanna were seated at the table, doing their homework.
"What's the quadratic formula?" Deanna asked.
"It's y=ax2+bx+c," Anton replied.
"By the PlumbBob," cried Deanna. "You're a genius!"
Anton laughed, as humble as usual. "No, not really. I think Ursula's smarter. She learned to walk and talk much faster than I did. That's what Mum and Dad told me, anyway."
Deanna looked back at her homework and frowned. "C'mon, Anton. We have a lot of work to do."
Anton and Deanna had finally finished their work and were now hanging out on the swings in Central Park.
"How long has it been since we met?" Anton asked.
"Seven years, about," Deanna answered.
"Wow...that's a long time, isn't it, Deanna?"
"Yes it is."
The two sat on the swings as they watched the sun slowly descend below the horizon. They watched as the lights were switched on across the town. Streetlights suddenly lit up in a festival of orange and white lights.
"We should be heading home now," Anton said.
"Yeah, we probably should," Deanna replied.
They hopped off the swings and gave each other a friendly hug.
"See you tomorrow," Anton said.
"You too," Deanna replied.
The two parted, heading for home.
Chapter 5 - Scouts and EelsEdit
The next day, after school, Howlgard Beach
"Right, you lot!" said the scoutmaster in a strong Australian accent. "Today, I'm gonna give ya a few pointers on fishin'."
Anton leaned over to Deanna and whispered, "He doesn't have to shout so much--"
"Vargheim!" the scoutmaster screamed. "No talking while I am!"
"Sorry, sir," Anton replied. Deanna giggled.
The scoutmaster subsequently cast his line, and almost immediately caught a bite. He pulled back forcefully and a large fish came flying out of the water.
"Now that's a fish," the scoutmaster said. "You need good bait to catch good fish. However, to get good bait, you'll needa fish for it. Today we'll go to Central Park, get some minnows then come back here and catch some swordfish. Whaddaya say?"
The scouts cheered.
"Well what're ya waiting for?" The scoutmaster cried. "Let's go get some fish!"
Anton's line shot across the air before dropping back down and splashing into the lake. After several minutes of waiting, he began tapping his foot impatiently.
Tap, tap, tappity, tap. Tappity, tappity, tap, tap. He repeated the rhythm over and over and over again. But try as he might, the fish didn't seem to find the tapping very attractive.
Tap, tap, tappity, tap. Tappity, tappity, tap, tap. Anton sighed. Everyone else had already caught at least one minnow. It wasn't his lucky day.
C'mon, c'mon! Anton attempted to communicate with the fish through telepathy. It failed to produce satisfactory results. The tapping continued.
"VARGHEIM!" came the shout of the scoutmaster. "STOP THAT TAPPING!"
"Sorry, sir," Anton whimpered in fear of the man's wrath. He stopped his foot immediately. Fortunately, he got a bite before his foot began to enter another rhythm.
"I got one!" he cried as he desperately pulled back on the line. His rod looked poised to snap into several pieces. Finally, a long, black fish burst from the water. It began to jump around, suffocating on the ground.
"Oops. Not a minnow," Anton sighed. He reached out to throw it back into the pond.
"No, Vargheim! That's a--" The scoutmaster didn't manage to finish his sentence. As soon as Anton's hand came into contact with the fish, a strong, stinging sensation ran up his arm and into his spine.
He screamed. Loudly. When the shocks ceased, Anton staggered about, dazed and confused. His body continued to spasm as the electricity surged through his nervous system. He fell to the ground.
"Are you okay, Anton?" asked Deanna.
After a few moments of silence, Anton managed to sit up. "Yeah," he panted, "I'm fine."
"Goodness gracious, Vargheim!" said the scoutmaster. "That's an electric eel! It could've killed you!"
"Sorry, sir," Anton whispered.
"Don't say sorry to me! Say sorry to your poor body!"
Chapter 6 - Life and DeathEdit
Two weeks later...
Anton and his family were now at the small airfield in Sunset Valley. They were mourning for the loss of his grandfather, Anton Vargheim II. The last of the old generation. As the Vargheims and Troysons, along with Anton II's friends in Sunset Valley, cried and moaned in sadness, the coffin was solemnly brought onto a plane that would take both Anton and company, and the coffin, home to Howlgard. Anton weeped silently as the coffin was loaded onto the plane. Deanna stood beside Anton, gripping his hand tightly. Tears formed small streams on his young face.
He had been a fantastic grandfather to Anton. When he was little, his grandfather would pick him up from his crib and play with him for hours on end. But after his wife became sick and died, Anton Vargheim II, in his sadness, moved away to Sunset Valley, where he would remain for the rest of his life.
On the way back to Howlgard, Deanna attempted to comfort Anton.
"It's alright, Anton," she said. "Mourn not one's death, but celebrate their life."
"Thanks for the encouragement, Yoda," he replied sarcastically. He immediately realised that he could've offended her, put his hands over his mouth and began to cry.
"There, there, shhhhhhh." Deanna said soothingly. "It's okay."
Anton was glad that someone cared about him in this dark time.
Two days later, Howlgard Academy
Anton Vargheim IV sat, alone, at an inconspicuous table in an inconspicuous corner of the cafeteria during the lunch break, trying to be as inconspicuous as possible while slowly consuming his meal. The other students chatted away, oblivious to the momentous event that had occurred just several days earlier.
His attempt to disappear into the shadows of the cafeteria didn't stop Deanna Troyson from approaching the boy as she exited the serving area.
"Hey, Anton!" she called, jovially, hoping to lift his spirits.
Anton attempted to drown his sorrows with his bottled water. It didn't work. "What is it, Deanna?"
"We're going on a trip to France during the summer holidays!"
"Mmm," Anton mumbled as he sipped his water, book in hand. A tear trickled down Anton's face. "That's nice." His eyes were now locked on the book, though he wasn't really reading anything.
"Aww, don't be so glum!" Deanna said. She sat down next to Anton and put her shoulder around him. Anton felt a little awkward.
"Look, I know it's sad, but crying and being miserable about it isn't going to help," she said.
"You don't know what it's like," Anton sobbed. "You never even knew your grandparents."
"True," Deanna replied, "but I do know how to deal with a death of someone close to me. Remember how I was crying about my cat last year?"
"Yeah," Anton's eyes were now on Deanna. "She got run over by a car, then died a few days later."
"Yes," said Deanna. "I was really sad about it, but I learnt how to get over it."
"You knew she was going to die, Deanna. You had time to say your last goodbyes. Grandpa was all the way in Sunset Valley when he died. I...didn't have time. It was so sudden."
Deanna said nothing, allowing him to continue.
"My grandfather was my idol. He would play with me for hours on end when I was a toddler. But when Grandma died, he moved away. I never saw him alive again."
"It's okay," Deanna replied, but she was interrupted.
"No, it's not okay!" he shouted. The other students in the cafeteria turned and looked at him. Deanna flinched. Then, after a few moments of silence, she exploded.
"You know what? That's IT!" she cried. "I'm trying to HELP you, and here you are, screaming your head off at me!"
"YOU'RE the one that's talking!" Anton screamed back. The two stared at each other furiously. Deanna then gave in. She stood up and walked away.
Then, she stopped. She looked back. Her expression had changed. Her eyes were sparkling with tears. "If you want to sit there being depressed for the rest of your life, FINE! See if I care!" She walked out of the cafeteria.
Anton's eyes followed her intently until she exited. Then, he looked at the food that Deanna had left behind. His mind suddenly started working again.
What have I done...? Anton thought.
Anton decided to pay a visit to the Troyson household after school. Maria, Deanna's mother, opened the door.
"Hello Anton," Maria said. "What is it? Did something happen?"
"It's...It's a long story," the boy replied. "Is Deanna in?"
"No, dear," Maria said, tilting her head in confusion. "She hasn't been home for an hour since school ended. Perhaps try the library?"
"Thanks, Mrs Troyson," Anton said before running off in search of his friend.
Upon reaching the library, Anton quietly sneaked through the doors, trying as hard as he could not to give Deanna knowledge of his presence. He soon after found the girl sitting in a secluded corner of the library, eyes buried in a book. Her face looked as if she had been crying.
She knew he was there. "What do you want?"
"Go on. I'm listening."
"I'm...I'm..." Anton stuttered. He just couldn't seem to get the words out of his mouth.
"Look, are you just going to stand there stut--"
"I'm sorry," Anton interrupted. "I'm sorry for everything that happened today. And the other day as well. It's...it's okay if you don't want--"
It was Anton's turn to be interrupted as Deanna stood up and hugged him. "You wanna come to France with us?"
There was an awkward silence for a few minutes.
"Thank you," Anton whispered, tears slowly flowing down his face. "That would be nice."
Chapter 7 - Tombs and TreasuresEdit
2 months later, Champs Les Sims, France.
Anton was relaxing on a chair with a good book in hand. It was about a boy who had discovered a new element, and was on the run from criminals who wanted it. As he flipped through the novel, he heard his friend's voice calling him.
"Anton!" shouted Deanna Troyson. "Come down here!"
"I'll be coming in a sec!" Anton called back. He just had to finish this chapter.
"Anton! You can't sit there reading that book forever!"
Anton began to speed-read. C'mon, just a few more--
He didn't have time to finish his thought. "Come down here or I'll come up and give you a noogie!"
Anton shivered at the thought of Deanna's hard knuckles rubbing on his scalp (it was the only thing about her that he didn't like), so he sighed, closed the book and ran down the stairs.
"There we go," Deanna said. "The ol' noogie never ceases to amaze me." She looked at her knuckles. Anton rolled his eyes.
"Alright, Deanna. What do you have to tell me?"
"We're going on an adventure!" Deanna squealed. "Mama and Papa are going to explore the Forgotten Burial Mound tomorrow! They said we can come along!"
"Why would it be called forgotten if everyone knew about it and was adventuring into it?"
"Is Tom coming?" Anton asked.
"Nah. He wants to meet the people that live here," she said.
Anton curiously looked around the chamber. It looked like it was the only room in the tomb.
So much for an adventure, he sighed. He had hoped for huge labyrinths and passageways as was typical of the tombs he had read about. Then he noticed that Deanna's parents, Maria and Reginald, were peeling away rocks from the huge pile at the end of the room. Anton wished he could help, but apparently he wasn't old enough yet.
About half an hour later, rocks lay strewn across the floor. Maria gave the wall a knock, as if unconvinced that it was a wall. It gave a hollow sound.
"Hmm..." Maria said, as she patted on the wall awkwardly. Her hand landed on a brick which, when pressure was applied, slid into the wall. Maria stood back with satisfaction before the wall flipped open, revealing another room.
"What's this?" Reginald said to himself as he inspected a hole in the wall. He shouted out as little critters crawled out of the hole and up his arm. He started shaking his arm madly.
"Get 'em off! Get 'em off!" he shouted as he bounced around the room.
Anton put his hand to his forehead and shook his head. This is going to be a very long day.
"Hey! I found something!" hollered an excited Anton. He'd found a strange looking mat with two footprints on them. He stood on it, and a chain locking one of the doors disappeared. He opened the door, stepped inside, and there it was.
A treasure chest.
"My, my. What have we here?" Maria Troyson gasped as he walked to the treasure chest. "Well done, Anton." Maria began looking through the chest and found gold, amongst, ironically, generally worthless objects. Like bowls.
"I suppose we could do with a few ancient French bowls around the place," Reginald said. Anton and Deanna giggled.
The Troyson family, along with Anton, continued exploring the tomb well into the night.
What Anton hadn't realised was that it was going to be a full moon tonight.
As the moon began its relentless march across the darkening sky, he began to feel queasy. A strange feeling surged through his legs, making them unstable and shaky.
Not again, he thought. He moaned with pain as the strange, but all-too-familiar sensation moved to his upper body. The Troysons, who had been exploring the next room, returned to where Anton was when they heard his groaning. They knew Anton was a werewolf, but they hadn't seen him transform before. They were terrified, seeing as they weren't werewolves themselves.
Anton's groans slowly changed to growls as the hair on his limbs grew and sprouted across the rest of his body. His ears began to grow and his jaws distorted in such a way that his lower teeth were in front of his upper teeth. His canines grew into sharp fangs. Finally, he became unconscious. As far as he was concerned, he was no longer awake.
But he howled at the moon.
The beast looked around and spotted Reginald and Maria Troyson staring at him. Deanna had fainted. It growled at the Troysons, obviously having no apparent memory of them. The beast had full control of Anton's body.
The beast leapt through the chambers of the burial mound. It had picked up a scent, and intended to follow it. The Troysons, after waking Deanna, in turn followed it, but at a distance.
Anton's nose led the beast straight to a locked door. Thinking it could smash through it, it crashed into the door, but that just made it dizzy. It began to walk on all fours through the room, frantically searching for a way to get through to the scent.
As far as the Troysons knew, any trace of the kind, human Anton they knew was locked up in the prison of his mind. The beast, for the moment, was at the forefront.
The wolf then spotted a keyhole, in the shape of a heart. Putting two and two together, it excitedly galloped around the room, searching for a heart-shaped keystone. It found it eventually. It had to hold it with its hands, awkwardly tottering on its legs to the keyhole before inserting it. It howled with victory as the lock snapped into pieces. The wolf then turned to the Troysons and grunted, beckoning them to open the door.
The beast raced through the opened door and continued to hunt for the source of the scent. It found a wall. It stood up, patting on it. Although the beast had no memory of watching Maria do it, it patted its hands on several places on the wall like it was a professional explorer. It stood back as the wall flipped open, revealing a secret room.
It found another chest. The beast opened it, finding lots of gold and gems, as well as valuable metals, and even a bottle of extremely aged nectar.
"He's good," said Reginald. "That wolf is good."
The moon began to sink beneath the horizon. As the sun began to rise, the beast stood up to howl at the mysterious grey sphere one last time before it completely disappeared. Then, as the sun's rays hit the surface of the earth, the werewolf began its metamorphosis.
Its ears shrank back to their normal configuration and size. Hair began dropping off. The beast's face and jaws, locked in a scowl, returned to that of the good-hearted and caring Anton that everyone knew. The beast's unsettling yellow eyes transitioned to green, then to the electric blue colour of Anton's eyes. The Troysons smiled with relief. For now, the regime of the beast was over.
Hair now rested at Anton's feet as his mind suddenly awoke. He looked at his hands awkwardly, wondering what had just happened. Deanna ran to him and hugged him.
"Uh, I know I turned into a werewolf and all," Anton said weakly. "Sorry."
"It's alright. The beast is gone for now," Deanna said. "Can we go home now?"
Chapter 8 - Summer and RomanceEdit
Three years later...
"You're meant to catch the frisbee, Ursula, not miss it!" Anton cried jokingly.
Ursula, giggling, ran to retrieve the frisbee.
"You throw it too hard, Anton!" she shouted after getting the frisbee.
Anton was now a teenager. His little sister had grown into a beautiful young girl. He had heard terrible stories from his friends about having little sisters, but he couldn't see a single truth in any of them. She was the best sibling one could have. Far from being one of those brats in his friends' stories.
He also had another baby sister, Tina, and his mother was pregnant again, but this time with a boy, Leonard. Just like Anton before him, she was bubbly and excitable. Anton's parents had told him that Tina was almost exactly like him. He smiled.
On the way home, Anton and Ursula stopped by the ice cream truck and bought an ice cream. It was Leisure Day, and everyone was either inside with the air conditioning on or at the beach, with the children playing in the water.
Anton and Ursula entered the house. Ursula ran off to play with her toys, while Anton walked upstairs to take a shower.
No sooner had he dried himself off and put fresh clothing on than he heard the doorbell ring. He heard Nestor open the door, but he couldn't make out who was on the other side of the door through all the walls.
"Master Anton! It's your friend, Miss Troyson!" Anton's eyes lit up and he joyously ran downstairs to meet Deanna.
"Hi Deanna!" said Anton. "Come in! You must be boiling in this weather!"
"Thanks," she replied gratefully as she stepped into the manor. Anton led her to the living room, where they collapsed into a couch, giggling. Nestor walked to the couch, carrying two glasses of ice-cold water.
"Thank you, Mr McCray," said Deanna.
"Thanks, Nestor," Anton replicated the gesture.
The butler nodded before heading off to complete his various tasks around the house.
Seated on the couch, Anton and Deanna chatted for hours.
Finally, he said, "You know, I think you're the most beautiful girl in the world."
"Oh! Uh...thanks," she replied with a sheepish laugh.
"You know, I've been wanting to ask you this for a long time..." Anton asked.
"Yes?" Deanna replied.
"Do you want to...um...you know..." As Anton stuttered, Nestor and Ursula entered the room. They stopped, frozen, watching the two intently.
"Go steady?" he suddenly blurted out.
They stared into each other's eyes, and their faces leaned slowly towards each other.
Nestor and Ursula turned and left the room.
Chapter 9 - University and PartiesEdit
Two years later...
"Yes! Yes, yes, yes, YES!" Anton whooped as he rushed through the house in complete happiness, the paper cutting through the air behind him.
"What is it, dear?" asked Anton's mother, Elizabeth. Anton put the brakes and stopped just several centimetres in front of her.
"Look!" He excitedly shoved the piece of paper into his mother's face.
"Oh! Wow!" Elizabeth gasped. As she read what was in front of her, it dawned on her why Anton was so happy.
"You got into the University!" she cried as she hugged her son. Tears of joy poured out of her.
"Yup!" he cried. "I'm leaving for the Sims University in three days to study Fine Arts!"
"Arts? Gosh! I have a degree for Arts. How long will you be gone?"
"I'll be back after a term, Mum. Don't worry."
"Is Deanna coming with you?"
"Yeah," Anton replied. "That makes me even happier!"
"Well, you'd better go pack your things."
Elizabeth released her son from her grasp. As he marched away to his bedroom, humming to Pharrell Williams' "Happy", she smiled, wondering how Anton grew up so quickly.
Three days later
Anton Vargheim IV stood back from the wall, satisfied. As he looked at his photographs of his family that he had put up on the wall, he heard others entering the dormitory downstairs. He ran down to meet them.
Deanna was already there.
"Hi! I'm Deanna Troyson," she said gleefully to the newcomers.
There were four of them. They introduced themselves as Ben, Ollie, Nadia and Kathy.
After the introductions were made, Anton decided to grab out his sketchbook and began to sketch his surroundings.
When he was finished several hours later, he showed it to his roommates.
"Wow!" gasped Ben. "Fine Arts?"
The others were speechless. They were obviously very impressed.
"Good. Very good."
The professor inspected Anton's sketch.
"You're doing well, Anton. I'll shape you up to be even better."
Anton left the classroom feeling jubilant, running back to the dormitory.
Chapter 10 - Shock and DeathEdit
Two months later...
Anton and Deanna were well settled into university. The rhythms that they had established had become so habitual that one could bet that they could do it in their sleep.
One winter's Saturday, in the mail, a letter had arrived from Howlgard.
"To Deanna Troyson," it said. "From Sacred Spleen Hospital, Howlgard."
With a slightly worried but at the same time intrigued expression, Deanna tore open the envelope, surrounded by her friends. Anton looked especially fearful for her. His eyes became shifty, and he was biting his lower lip.
Deanna began reading the letter. Then she burst into tears.
"What's wrong, Deanna?" asked Ben.
Through her tears and wails, she read out the message, sobbing.
A dangerous strain of influenza has broken out in Howlgard. Many have fallen ill because of the epidemic, including the Vargheim family. You might want to share this with Master Vargheim.
Deanna paused, turning to look at Anton, eyes shimmering. Then, she continued.
Anton, tears welling in his eyes in sympathy for his best friend, held his arms out in front of him. Deanna automatically buried her head into his shoulder. He could feel the vibrations Deanna caused as her body bobbed up and down as she cried. His sleeve became moist as the waterfall of tears rained down upon it.
"There, there, shhhhhhh. It's okay," Anton said soothingly, exactly as Deanna had comforted him seven years earlier. "It's okay." He cradled her in his arms, repeating the sentence over and over again in an attempt to calm his friend. Gradually, one by one, their roommates buried them in a bombardment of commiserative hugs.
Two days later...
Anton, Deanna and their roommates had been granted leave to travel to Howlgard to see Deanna's ailing family. Thomas Troyson sat up slowly in his bed as soon as Deanna entered the ward. She ran to him, and he hugged his younger sister, taking care not to kiss her.
"Careful," he croaked, smiling weakly. "I'm very contagious." He brought his hand to his mouth and coughed coarsely. Deanna moved away in alarm. Tom looked as ill as he felt. He was pale, and there were lines under his previously jubilant eyes, which had lost their sparkle.
"Deanna," her mother said softly. Deanna went to hug Maria Troyson. "I hate to see you so sad, darling. Sorry for getting so sick."
Deanna finally went to the bedside of Reginald Troyson.
"Hello, Deanna," her father choked. Before Deanna could begin the hugging procedure, the door to the ward opened.
Anton's family walked in. His youngest brother, Leonard, still looked somewhat sick. He was a little pale, but still walked with healthy strength. Tina was sniffing constantly, coughing sometimes. She was holding a handkerchief to keep everything to herself. Anton's parents and Ursula, however, had fully recovered.
The teenage Ursula ran to hug her older brother. "It's good to see you, Anton," she said. Then she turned to Deanna. "I'm so sorry, Deanna."
"So," asked Reginald. "You going to introduce all these new faces to us?"
"This is, uh, Ben, Ollie, Nadia and Kathy," Deanna said.
"I wish I could have met you under better circumstances, Mr Troyson, Mrs Troyson and Tom," said Ben.
"Us too," agreed the other three.
The large group remained in the Troysons' ward for the entire day, chatting, laughing and crying.
"We're so proud of you, Anton and Deanna," Maria said. She then turned to Anton and Deanna's four roommates. "We are also proud of you, Ben, Ollie, Nadia and Kathy. Thank you all for coming to support Anton and Deanna."
Ollie blushed. "Thank you, Mrs Troyson." The doctor came in and said that they needed to let Reginald, Maria and Tom rest.
"Get better soon," said Deanna, before the group of visitors left the room for the night.
Four months later...
With the hole finally filled, and the three Troysons laid to rest, the cemetery caretaker stepped away. Many people were present to bid farewell to the popular citizens of Howlgard. Anton, his family, Deanna, Ben, Ollie, Nadia, Kathy, and the rest of the neighbourhood were at the cemetery for the funeral. Anton had his arms around his girlfriend and she sobbed, her handkerchief covering her nose and mouth. Tears flowed almost effortlessly down Deanna's face.
After the proceedings, the group of mourners moved to Deanna's house. She collapsed onto a couch in the living room.
"The house is so...empty," Deanna whispered, yet another tear toppling from her eye.
"It's alright," said Anton. "You can always come and visit us."
"It's not the same, though," replied the heartbroken Deanna. "I wish...I wish they got better instead of worse."
"As a wise friend once told me," said Anton soothingly, "'Mourn not one's death, but celebrate their life.'"
Deanna's head turned to Anton. She smiled weakly.
"Come 'ere, you," Anton cried, holding his arms out. Deanna flung herself into him. She began sobbing uncontrollably again.
"There, there, shhhhhhhhhh," Anton started again. "It's okay, Deanna." He repeated the sentence several times. Their friends and family felt equally miserable.
Eventually, everyone had left. Ben, Ollie, Nadia and Kathy had decided to stay the night with Anton and Deanna, and had all turned in for the night. Anton and Deanna were left in the living room, on the couch.
Deanna had cried herself to sleep as Anton continued to hold Deanna. Anton began to notice that his eyelids were becoming really heavy. He forced himself to stay awake, keeping vigilant watch over his girlfriend. Around a half hour later, however, he gave up, and he fell asleep, with the love of his life in his arms.
Chapter 11 - Rings and BellsEdit
The following day...
Anton Vargheim IV awoke. He noticed that it was still early. It was around five-thirty in the morning. He then realised what he must do.
Laying Deanna carefully on her bed, he rushed out the door and sprinted across the bridge before running through the gates of his home, Vargheim Manor. He ran upstairs, entering his bedroom. He stared at his coin box. It had so much money in it, it had evolved into a steel safe. Anton turned the combination lock. Five. Two. Seven. Four. It flipped open, and he stared at the five thousand Simoleons sitting there. He grabbed out all the money and slammed the safe shut. Running out the door, he stuffed the wads of money into his pocket and ran to the nearby consignment store. Fortunately, it had already opened for the day while the sleepy town woke itself up.
"Welcome to Consignments Howlgard," said the clerk. He frowned sympathetically. "I'm so sorry."
"It's alright," Anton said. "Do you happen to have any...um...rings?"
Two semesters later...
Anton and Deanna had finally graduated from university, both finishing their courses with flying colours. They had exchanged contact details with Ben, Ollie, Nadia and Kathy, and they parted ways.
Upon their return to Howlgard, Anton and Deanna decided to pay a visit to the graveyard. But, before that happened, Anton dropped by home. After greeting his family and a lot of hugs, he left Deanna to be bombarded by his family. He bounded up the stairs and rushed into his room.
When he came down again he was wearing his best suit. Deanna was already dressed in her formal outfit. They said goodbye to his family, and they drove across the bridge to the adjacent island, where the cemetery was located.
In front of the graves of Deanna's deceased family, Deanna began to cry again. Anton put his hand on her shoulder.
"We miss you so much," Deanna sobbed. Anton simply bowed his head in silence.
Finally, he spoke up. "Mr and Mrs Troyson, I'd like to ask something of you."
He put his right hand into his pocket. His hand wrapped around a small object in it.
"I'd like...to ask..." he turned to Deanna. Deanna's eyes sparkled in anticipation, waiting to see what he would do next.
"I would like to humbly ask...for your gracious blessing..." He took his hand out of his pocket, holding a small black box with a gold rim wrapped around it. Deanna put her hands to her mouth in shock. "...and approval for the marriage of me to your daughter."
Deanna was jumping up and down in excitement, nodding her head very quickly. Anton pulled the diamond ring from the box and held it up to the sky. The sky was clear, and there was not a single cloud in the vicinity of the cemetery.
"I guess that's a yes, then," Anton said, smiling. He slid the ring onto Deanna's ring finger. They embraced.
"Thank you so much, Anton," Deanna whispered. Anton felt ecstatic. He wished he could make time stop. He'd quite happily stay like this forever.
St PlumbBob Cathedral, Moonlight Falls
Anton, in his best suit, and Deanna, in her wedding gown, stood facing each other while a priest read from his book.
"Then I proclaim you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride."
As the two newlyweds kissed each other, the others in the pews applauded with joy. Anton Vargheim IV and Deanna Troyson were now married.
Deanna's hazel eyes looked at Anton's blues intently. "I wish Mama, Papa and Tom were here to see this."
"Don't worry," Anton whispered back. "I'm sure they're watching us right now."
Chapter 12 - Squeals and Screams (again)Edit
Fourteen months later, Sacred Spleen Hospital, Howlgard
"It's a boy!" the doctor cried. The new mother sighed in relief and joy. The baby was handed to her. His blue eyes matched his light brown hair perfectly. Tears filled her eyes. Anton felt a little teary himself.
"Welcome to the world, baby," Deanna said to the crying boy. "Shhhh, it's okay. Mummy's here."
Anton grinned. "Ryan."
Deanna, puzzled, turned to look at Anton.
"I've always liked that name. Let's call him Ryan."
References and mentioned subjects/objectsEdit
- ↑ Mayo, Simon. Itch - The Explosive Adventures of an Element Hunter. London: Random House Children's UK, 2012. Print.