“Are you okay?”
“Do you need to visit FicPsych?”
Kaitlyn sighed, rose from her seat, and frowned at her partner. “Selene. You haven’t said anything over two syllables since we got back. It was rotten, I know - but it was just a badfic, when all’s said and done.”
“That’s easy for you to say,” Selene growled. She was curled up on a beanbag, her face to the wall, uniform jacket huddled about her in a way that made it look disturbingly like a cloak.
Kaitlyn sighed, walked over, and crouched down a few feet away. “I know what it’s like to see your lust object abused,” she said. “This one mission, Pippin was thrown back in time to the First Age. He met Beren and Luthien, and they were not in character.” She shuddered at the memory. “Not one bit.”
“It’s not the same,” Selene ground out, curling tighter.
“I fail to see why not,” Kaitlyn replied, her voice calm. “Come one, you can tell me.” She settled down into a sitting position, trying on her best ‘open and receptive’ expression. “I’m right here for-”
“Really? You think that was me relaxing?”
Selene lifted her head, her eyes bleary. “It’s a relative thing,” she said. “Get that, will you?”
Kaitlyn grunted, pushed herself up, and recrossed the Response Centre to slap the red button. “And we have a crossover.”
“Another one?” Selene slowly unfolded herself and got to her feet. “What continuua?”
“It… er.” Kaitlyn frowned, scrolled the report back up, and then down again. “Well. That’s… a complicated question.”
“You’re just trying to distract me, aren’t you?” Selene leant past her and took over the mouse. “Lord of the Rings and Twilight. What was so hard about that?”
Kaitlyn tapped the screen. “The fact that it’s set in Ancient Rome? And features Dracula? And, uh, Shrek and Tutankhamun and… wow, just, like, everything? Okay, what is it now?”
Selene’s eyes had turned a fiery red, and her fingernails seemed to be trying to turn into claws, skittering over the metal of the console. “Dracula?” she hissed. “He is there?”
“Uh, yes.” Kaitlyn took a hasty step back. “Is that going to be a problem?”
Selene mastered herself with a visible effort. “Not… if he knows what’s good for him,” she managed. “Disguises?”
“Hobbits,” Kaitlyn said firmly.
Selene rolled her eyes. “Seriously? The report says there’s barely any LotR in it. Hobbits will be wildly out of place.”
“True,” Kaitlyn agreed, and then held up a finger. “But. ‘Kelly’ spends most of her time wandering around in the woods. Hobbits are good at moving silently.”
“But would not be likely to kill a ‘Roman warrior’,” Selene countered. “Besides, there’s something far more suitable right there in the story.” She tapped the screen. “The Spy even suggested it, look.”
“No,” Kaitlyn said. “No, no, no. That’s a terrible idea.”
“Just because you won’t be able to eat mushrooms…” Selene grinned, her teeth glittering in the electric light. “Besides, you chose the last disguises. Come on.” She pulled up the portal, grabbed her Remote Activator, and stepped through.
Kaitlyn sighed. “Not much point taking a bag, is there?” she muttered. “All right - here goes nothing.”
The cobblestones were cool beneath her paws as Kaitlyn stepped out into a city that the narrative insisted on calling ‘Roman’. She squirmed in the early morning sunlight, feeling her fur stand up all over her body, trying to shake off a strange, uncomfortable pressure. Then she lifted her muzzle and glared along it at the black-clad figure of her partner.
“Don’t give me that,” Selene said, her voice sounding strangely flat to Kaitlyn’s new ears. “One of us needs to be able to speak, to read out the charges.”
Kaitlyn muttered something unpleasant in her new wolfish voice, but all that came out was a low growl.
Selene got the point regardless. “Yes, yes,” she said, “but you have to remember: since it’s not yet full daylight, I can do this.” She dropped down onto her hands and knees, and then her whole body seemed to blur, as if surrounded by a mist. Black leather became black fur, and in only a few moments a dark wolf stood in front of Kaitlyn, blinking in the sunlight.
“It always takes me a moment to get used to,” Selene said, her message conveyed by a flick of one ear, a specific look, a tilt of her head, and only the very slightest whimper. She stretched, her fur bristling and flattening, and then met her partner’s gaze. “So?”
“So,” Kaitlyn growled, “I didn’t want to be a wolf. How am I supposed to use a CAD? How are you going to write a charge list?”
Selene shrugged, or at least that was the impression Kaitlyn got. “I’ve got a good memory,” she said. “Did you bring a CAD?”
“Well, no, but-”
“There we go then. Besides…” Selene flicked her tail towards the Words. “I don’t think that’ll be a problem here.”
It was 2000 year in the past in roman and there was a girl and her name was kelly mariena ceaser joenson and she was 19 years old. She had balck hair down to her wayst and a prefect face and wored a roman armor and sword and helmet maked of gold and sliver and it was cost alot of mooney.
“Dear sweet Nienna!” Kaitlyn yelped. “Is it all like that?”
“I’m afraid so.” Selene shook herself out. “Explains that annoying pressure, though - I think each chapter is a single block paragraph.”
Kaitlyn scowled up at the Words. “So she’s from ‘roman’-” there was a small popping noise nearby, “-and her father is the ‘ceaser’, who has thousands of ‘roman dollars’.” The popping sounds continued. “Her mother is dead, or ‘ded’, and she wanted to go to war, but her father wouldn’t let her. Is that about right?”
“No,” said Selene, “it’s all horribly wrong, but it’s what she’s telling us.”
“Just as long as I’ve got that clear.” Kaitlyn wrinkled her nose, sniffing. “Next question: why can I smell wolves?”
“Er…” Selene looked her up and down.
“Oh.” Selene turned slowly on the spot, her ears lying flat on her head. “Do you happen to know what the mini for Ancient Rome is?” she asked.
“No, I-” Selene wasn’t listening. She darted across the square and lunged behind a pillar. A moment later, she emerged, with something dangling from her jaws. She padded across the cobbles and dropped it in front of Kaitlyn.
“Say hello to Kaitlyn, roman,” she growled.
The wolf shook itself, glared at Selene, and then turned to Kaitlyn. “Greetings,” it said in a rich, deep voice.
She said, rather, Kaitlyn realised: though she was only about the size of a small dog, she had the scent of a full-grown wolf with pups of her own. Then there was that strange bronze sheen to her fur… Kaitlyn’s paws twitched, and she abruptly reigned in her wolfish instincts: she had been about to start sniffing at the newcomer.
“She’s a mini-Capitoline Wolf,” Selene informed her, “named for the wolf who suckled Romulus and Remus - or rather, for a specific statue of her.”
“I’ve seen it,” Kaitlyn recalled. “I can see the resemblance.” She squinted down at the miniature wolf. “And will you join our pack, little sister?” she asked.
roman flicked an ear at her. “‘Our pack’,” she repeated. “In this manner did our twin founders speak of one another - but history has proven their desires false, has it not? Two may not lead; one must follow.”
Selene growled, low and threatening. “Our pack,” she repeated. “Join us, or face me.”
“Or perhaps I am mistaken,” roman mused. “It is well. I shall gather my sisters as they come; when you leave this town, we shall join you.”
Kaitlyn shook her head as the miniature wolf scampered away. “Do you think all minis are like that?” she asked.
“Best not to think about it.” Selene sighed - then yelped as the nearest house suddenly burst into flame. “Cacafeogos! What was that?”
“That. Uh.” Kaitlyn took an incautious step backwards, and caught her own tail under her paw. “That was apparently Godzilla.”
Selene looked up at the mountain-sized creature rampaging through the town. “Oh,” she managed. “Should we run?”
“We’ve got a badfic to follow, remember?” Kaitlyn said. “Right now, Kelly - or ‘Kells’, which is apparently her nickname - is trying to rescue her father from the flames, though he’s not actually in the house.” She cocked her head, skimming the Words. “Apparently she knew this day would come.”
“What, an attack on archaic Italy by a Japanese monster?”
“Yes.” Kaitlyn shrugged. “The Roman army was too weak to stop him coming to their land. I’m translating that from the misspelled gibberish, of course.”
“Of course,” Selene agreed. “We should go inside so we can keep track of her.”
“No need,” Kaitlyn pointed out. “She’s coming out into the stables any minute. I think they’re round the back.”
The two agents loped down a side alley, ducked under a wooden gate, and crouched behind a low wall. Moments later, the door from the house swung open, and they got their first look at their quarry.
“Well, I like her hair,” Kaitlyn mused, “but that armour - eesh! Precious metals aren’t much use for stopping swords.”
“She does have a ‘magik’ sword,” Selene said, “and… that.,” she concluded, as Kelly rode out of the stables.
‘That’ was apparently Kelly’s friend Elkus, ‘a magic ghost deer like tha patornos deer from hary potter and the holy grail/golbet of fires. and also he could talk.’ Kaitlyn felt her hackles rising as he trotted across the yard.
“Am I the only one who wants to chase him through the forests and bring him down?” she asked.
“Far from it,” Selene replied in the same low tone. “Maybe when Kelly has been dealt with…” She shook herself from nose to tail, then rose and walked towards the gate. “Come on,” she said, “we’ve got work to do. As soon as the chapter ends-”
"I must find my farther but Godsilla is too powar for me and Elkus to fihgt BUT I WILL COME BACK!" she cryed loudlyt into the sunsite as the night began to fall.
“Right. We need to send Godzilla back to his continuum.”
“Er,” Kaitlyn said, “problem. We’re not exactly equipped for, you know, using portal technology right now.”
“Which is why I came in without a disguise. Honestly.” Selene crouched down by the gate, and that strange dark mist coiled around her again. When it had dissipated, she got to her feet and stretched.
“That’s better,” she said in her flat human voice. Then she looked down at Kaitlyn and raised an eyebrow. The disguised agent’s tongue was hanging out as she panted.
“Stop that,” the vampire said, flapping a hand, then bent to collect up her clothes. “If I’d known you were going to ogle me, I’d’ve changed behind the wall.” She pulled on her underwear, fiddled with her bra for a few moments, then shook her head and gathered everything into a bundle under one arm. “I’ll dress while I go,” she said vaguely. “Just… wait here, all right?”
Kaitlyn sat on her haunches, watching clouds of smoke rise into the clear blue sky. The roaring of Godzilla - and, presumably, of his mini, though Kaitlyn had no idea what form it would take - was a constant background, right up to the moment a wave of blue light swept over the mountain-sized creature. The silence after it vanished was eerie; Kaitlyn felt an urge to howl simply to fill it, but restrained herself.
A short while later, a large black wolf trotted into the yard and sat down, looking at her with eyes that were more red than yellow.
“Don’t worry,” Kaitlyn said eventually. “You’re not my type.”
“Good,” Selene growled, and said nothing else.
Kaitlyn sighed. “Come on, Selene,” she said. “You were suddenly, randomly naked. How could I not look? Don’t tell me you wouldn’t do the same if it were a man.”
“... maybe,” Selene allowed, then shook herself. “All right, probably. But… all right.”
“All right,” Kaitlyn agreed. “Are we good?”
“We’re good.” Selene got to her feet and sniffed the cobbles. “She went this way?”
“It’s going to be tricky to follow Elkus the Ghost Deer,” Kaitlyn mused, standing and crossing to her partner’s side. “Of course, we have an advantage - that badfic-induced pressure should wear off if we stray too far from her course. Reckon we can beat her to the next chapter?”
Selene tossed her head. “We’re wolves,” she said. “Count on it. Let’s go.”
As the pair loped out of the gate, Kaitlyn glanced sideways at her partner. “By the way… pink flowery underwear? I never would have guessed.”
Selene glared at her. “And if you know what’s good for you, you’ll forget all about it.”
“Maybe, maybe,” Kaitlyn agreed, “or perhaps-- no, no, all right, forgetting already.”
The mini-Capitoline Wolf pack joined them as they passed through the city gates. roman seemed to have assumed the role of subordinate leader, keeping order among her siblings: ceaser, pilar, slawve, and the gleaming gold wolf called roman dollar. Together, the seven wolves loped across the countryside, their easy gait eating up the miles.
“There’s something very wrong with the geography here,” Selene commented to Kaitlyn, expressing herself in a wrinkled nose and a confused-seeming twist of the head. “We should be still in Rome’s hinterlands, but this feels more like Dalmatia or somewhere.”
“Er.” Kaitlyn twitched an ear. “A, how do you know so much about European geography? And b, what does that mean?”
“I didn’t always live in HQ, you know,” Selene growled. “What it means is that we have a major spatial-temporal compression taking place. I’m guessing it’s so we can get to Transylvania in decent time - you did say they visited the Count’s castle, right?”
“That’s what the report said,” Kaitlyn confirmed. “I’m guessing he didn’t live too close to Rome.”
“Not really.” Selene glared around herself as if the landscape had personally offended her - which, in a way, it had. “Okay, here’s the plan. We’ve already passed Kelly and Elkus-”
“Wait, we have?” Kaitlyn practically fell over herself trying to look behind them, and as she struggled for balance the pack came to a halt. “When?”
“A while back,” Selene said with a wolfish shrug. “We’re between chapters, so it didn’t seem worth following them. Didn’t you smell them?”
“I wasn’t really paying attention,” Kaitlyn admitted. “Okay, so… what now?”
“We find the next chapter,” Selene said. “The report said there was a hut; we should recognise it by the compression. And then-”
“Sleep?” Kaitlyn suggested. “I actually haven’t gone to bed since we were partnered, I could do with a rest.”
“I’ve got a similar problem,” Selene muttered, drawing an inquisitive look from Kaitlyn.
“I thought you’d been sleeping while I wrote up the reports?”
“I was,” Selene replied. “It’s not… look, it would take too long to explain. Yes, you can sleep. The pack and I will keep watch.”
“We will not permit any harm to come to you,” said roman seriously. “Though you are our leader, we see you as our daughter in many ways.”
“Not sure whether to be offended or flattered,” Kaitlyn muttered. “Okay, come on - let’s find this hut so I can curl up.”
Kaitlyn was woken by a gentle nudge in her side, and twisted her head round to see one of the minis - slawve, she thought. “The prey is coming, mistress,” the miniature wolf said quietly.
“Thank you,” Kaitlyn said, clambering to her feet. She slunk around the side of the hut, to where Selene was waiting, peering out at the path. “What news?”
“We’ve definitely ended up in Wallachia, ridiculous though that is,” Selene told her. “I recognise it from- well, never mind. My feeling is that the geographical aberration should spring back without any intervention, so that at least is a relief.”
“I was actually asking about the Suvian.”
“Is she a Suvian?” Selene wondered. “I’d be more inclined to think her a troll. There’s just too much wrong with this story for her to be doing it innocently.”
Kaitlyn rolled her eyes and resisted the urge to howl. “Does it matter?” she asked. “Suvian or troll, we’re going to kill her either way. Just tell me where she is.”
“About five breaths away, according to roman.” Selene nodded towards the bend in the track. “You should see her any time now.”
In the night Elkus and Kelly walked for mayny ours until they came to a small hut in the road it was maked off wood and sticks and there was a lite from the top of it.
Kaitlyn sat back on her haunches to look up at the hut. “So it’s a wooden TARDIS?”
“It’s a wooden TARDIS,” Selene agreed. “Hush, she’s coming.”
“And she’s going to hear my ears twitching?”
“Elkus can probably smell them,” Selene pointed out.
“Nah, he’s a ghost. Ghosts can’t smell. Practically a well-known fact.”
“knock nock hello is anyone their!”
If Kelly had looked around the side of the hut, she would have been greeted by the sight of two large wolves rolling with silent laughter. “She says ‘knock, knock’,” Kaitlyn blurted out. “Oh, this one’s almost too funny to kill.”
Selene tilted her head. “No. No it isn’t.”
The hut door opened, and the agents listened in silence as Kelly explained her plight to the old woman who lived there. When the two OCs went inside, Selene got to her feet and padded round to the door.
“They’ve left it just about open enough,” she reported to Kaitlyn. “Not that there’s anything to see… a small fire, is all.”
“Aww, no console room?” Kaitlyn scratched absently at her ear. “So what are they doing? Somehow I doubt it’s sleeping.”
“You’re right.” Selene cocked her head, listening. “The old woman is a prophet or seeress or something - she can see the past, present, and future. She can tell Kelly where her father is, but she needs ingredients.”
“More like a witch than a prophetess, then,” Kaitlyn mused. “Cauldrons and potions and so on.”
“They need an ogre’s brain,” Selene continued, “a bag of gold dust, a cup of-” Her ears flattened to her head, and a low growl rose in her throat.
“Okay, get back here,” Kaitlyn snapped, rising and baring her teeth in a show of authority. Somewhat to her surprise - and Selene’s - the vampire slunk back around the side of the hut. “Thank you,” Kaitlyn said. “Now: what?”
“Blood,” Selene said in a low rumbling growl. “She needs a cup of blood from the Mas- from Dracula’s castle.”
“Ah. I see.” Kaitlyn stuck her muzzle around the corner and peered at the door: Kelly was re-emerging, carrying a map. “Is this going to be a problem for you? Because I can take the pack and leave you here.”
“No,” Selene barked, then flinched from the sound of her own voice. She scampered round the back of the hut, and Kaitlyn barely had time to follow her before Kelly rode past, looking around curiously.
“No,” Selene said again, when the OCs had moved on. “It’s not a problem. I can handle it.”
Kaitlyn gave her a long look. “Good,” she said. “We have a much bigger problem. Check the Words and see when she’s getting to the next scene.”
Selene peered up into a sky that had suddenly turned wintery. “After a few hours?”
“No,” Kaitlyn corrected, “after few ours. And I’ve just said one. So the important question is: have either of us used an ‘our’ since the last chapter ended?”
“You just did,” Selene pointed out. “A second one, I mean.”
“Yavanna take it,” Kaitlyn muttered. “This is as bad as the Knights Who Say Ni. So what do we do?”
“How many is ‘few’?” Selene asked. “Because we need to ration our- oh, flash panneys.”
“I think we need to catch her up,” Kaitlyn said. “roman? Gather the pack and catch us up.”
“As you request,” the mini-Capitoline Wolf said, and darted off into the trees as the two agents set off.
Elkus wasn’t moving all that fast - a canter, not a gallop - so it took only a few minutes for the agents to catch their quarry up. The mountains, which had seemed so distant, now loomed overhead, massive and snow-capped.
“Looks like we’re just in time,” Kaitlyn muttered to her partner. “If we hadn’t watched our language-”
After few ours they had maked to the bootom of the mountains it was very windy and snow blwed into thire faces hard.
“... do you think wolves can facepalm?”
“I’m sure we’d all be fascinated if you found out,” Selene chuckled, ignoring Kelly as she shouted about how she had to find her father. The OCs headed into the snow-covered forest, and the agents followed.
They were greeted almost immediately by the sound of howling, and Selene grinned. “Listen to them, the children of the night,” she murmured. “What music they make!”
“Is that the pack?” Kaitlyn wondered, then wrinkled her nose. “No, I smell something else…”
“You don’t need to smell.” Selene nodded at a point just out of their quarry’s path. “See his paws?”
Sure enough, a white wolf was crouched amid the trees, only his paws sticking out into the wintery light. “Does he think he’s hidden?” Kaitlyn wondered.
Selene glanced at the Words. “I think Kelly intended to see paw tracks, but instead she just saw paws. Hence…”
"Oh not it is the paws of snow wolfves!"
“Aaaaand fight scene!”
The fight was not as dramatic as its subject clearly thought it was. Kelly was jumped by four wolves, managing to hit one in the back and stain the snow ‘blod red coler’. Elkus headbutted one wolf, but didn’t injure it. Kelly managed to get herself knocked down by a wolf, who began to claw at her.
“I wish that was me,” Kaitlyn muttered, then shrugged at Selene’s skeptical head-tilt. “Because of the murdering, not the fact that she’s female. Honestly, Selene.”
Out of nowhere, a crossbow bolt hit the wolf, causing it to instantly collapse on top of Kelly. “All right, maybe not,” Kaitlyn allowed.
"good they are all dead" said a cold voice
“... no, they’re not,” Selene pointed out. “They’re all hanging around in the treeline. Only two of them are dead.”
“What, you doubt the word of, ah, ‘Drakcola of Draocklas Castle’?”
“Always,” Selene growled. “But actually, that makes sense - he has power over wolves. So he presumably orchestrated this attack solely to get Kelly into his debt.”
Kaitlyn studied Dracula. “Under her influence, I’m not sure he could come up with that sort of plan.”
“Maybe you’re right,” Selene allowed as Dracula led Kelly and Elkus away. “All right,” she barked once she was sure they were out of earshot, “you can come out now.”
The remaining snow wolves - there were a full half dozen of them - slunk forward, and behind them came another six wolves. These ones were jet black, with eyes that seemed to glow with an unholy fire - and were barely larger than chihuahuas.
“Minis,” Kaitlyn realised, feeling her pack of Roman minis tense behind her. “But not like ours…”
“I am Darkula,” growled one of the newcomers. “I speak for the pack.”
“No,” Selene said, her fur standing on end, “you really don’t. You will join us.”
The mini hesitated, his ears and tail quivering, and Kaitlyn glanced at her partner. Sure enough, Selene’s eyes were glowing a fierce red, and her fangs seemed to be growing even longer.
“We will join you,” Darkula said eventually. “Brothers! We join our pack with the Mistress’!”
As first the minis, and then the snow wolves, flowed across the snow-covered ground, Selene glanced behind her. Her gaze met roman’s. “Will this be a problem?” she asked, her tone mild.
roman grinned a wolfish grin. “My sisters and I were wrought from metal,” she pointed out. “Let these newcomers try to harry me, and they will taste the fury of Imperial Rome.”
“Excellent.” Selene nodded her respect, and turned to meet Kaitlyn’s gaze at last. “Mini-Children of the Night,” she said. “We should have seen it coming, really.”
“That was… impressive,” Kaitlyn said. “So you have all the powers Dracula has?”
“Most of them.” Selene shrugged. “I never got the hang of the bat thing, though.”
“Or the clothes thing.”
“Will you shut up about the clothes thing?”
There was a flash of lightning, and a rumble of thunder that provoked yelps from some of the pack. Selene turned her head, seeking the source - and the Words. “Dracula used ‘magick vanpire powars’ to light his fire,” she read. “Since we don’t have the ability to create fire - more’s the pity - but we do have weather control…”
“Nice adaptation on the world’s part,” Kaitlyn agreed. “So should we head over?”
Selene was still reading the Words. “Yes,” she said, “and quickly. Dracula is already giving his speech.”
The sound of Dracula’s words drifted towards them as they approached. He was explaining how he came to be driven from his castle: some book had led the other vampires to declare that humans were their friends, and then they ‘got all sparky they were not proper vampires anymore’. “‘Sparky’?” Kaitlyn wondered as the pack reached the edge of the camp. “Do you think he means-?”
"I was come here for a cup of blod from the castel for safe my farther maybe we cold go together I coud help get rid of this horribel Edword!" menbtioned kelly
With a pop, something about the size of a rat appeared in front of the agents. It was brown, vaguely canine - and sparkled in the firelight. Selene’s eyes widened as the mini turned on the spot, then looked up at her.
“I say,” it began, its barks squeaky and strangely lethargic, “do you suppose I-”
One of the mini-Children darted forward, growling low, and grabbed the new mini by the scruff of the neck. He seemed primed to shake it, perhaps killing it, but a mini-Capitoline Wolf gave a warning growl. “Drop the pup,” ceaser rumbled.
“This is no true wolf,” the black mini growled back, his voice muffled. “And its spawner was no true vampire.”
“Both of you,” Selene snapped, stepping between them, “stop it. Put Edword down.”
“Edword,” Kaitlyn repeated as the mini-Child of the Night grudgingly obeyed. “As in Edward Cullen?”
“Precisely,” Selene confirmed. “What we have here is a mini-Sparklewolf. And he’s not the only one,” she added in a raised tone. “Show yourselves - and you, Darcula and Dracola.”
Four diminutive wolves slunk out of the trees, two of them sparkling. Selene cast a quick look at the OCs and Dracula - they were already preparing to depart again - then beckoned the new minis forward. “You are part of my pack,” she said firmly, “all of you. You will not fight among yourselves, understood? A mini’s origins are not her doing; nor do they impact her character.”
The minis joined the growing pack, and one of the snow wolves looked at another. “Such a strange pack we have fallen in with,” she said, her tone airy.
“Truly,” the second agreed. “One wonders where it will take us.”
“Right now,” Selene interrupted, “it will take you to Dracula’s castle. Come.” And she bounded off with the pack at her heels, leaving Kaitlyn standing in the snow.
“I’m starting to feel like a bit of a third wheel,” Kaitlyn announced to the world at large. Then she chuckled. “Or maybe a twenty-fourth wheel. Oh, well - off we go.”
Castle Dracula was some distance away - or it was supposed to be. When Kaitlyn caught up with the pack, she cut through the distance with another ‘few ours’.
“Oh, come off it,” Selene sighed. “That’s not Dracula’s castle. He has more taste than that… horror movie monstrosity.”
Kaitlyn looked up at the imposing castle, festooned with gargoyles, randomly placed ironwork, and skulls scattered on the windowledges. “Maybe Edward redecorated?” she suggested.
“Or maybe Kelly is warping the entire world to fit her bizarre ideas,” Selene countered. “Come on - if they shut the door behind them, I’ll have to change to open it, and it’s cold out here.”
The pack cascaded into the castle courtyard just in time to see Dracula - already being watched by two extra mini-Children - unlock the front door and step into what the story described as a ‘castel front room’. The agents put on a burst of speed, straining to reach the door before it closed-
-which turned out to be a complete waste of time, since Dracula didn’t bother to shut it before leading the party up the stairs. Kaitlyn reached the door first, and hesitated. “Do I need to get someone to invite you in?” she asked her partner.
“You could do it yourself,” Selene told her, “but it’s not necessary. I’ve already - well, never mind. Come on.” With that, the wolves swept inside, the three extra minis (Dracokla having appeared after Kelly had stepped inside) joining them as they did so, and clambered up the staircase to the throne room.
Even allowing for their low-to-the-ground perspective, it was a big room, but somehow vague and undefined. The only truly solid object was the throne - a gigantic work of gleaming bone, dripping with blood. “Ta-cky,” Kaitlyn signalled, careful to keep all communication to movement, not sound.
Kelly, Elkus - though how he had climbed the stairs was a mystery - and Dracula were confronting Edward Cullen, who was not seated on the throne so much as draped across it. "we can degeat you edward you arent even a real vanpire!" declared Kelly.
Selene tensed. “Read the Words!” she yelped at Kaitlyn, not bothering with silence, and Kaitlyn frowned up at the ceiling. As usual, the next couple of lines were just coming into focus: Edward was about to cast a spell using his copy of Twilight, and summon…
“The spirit of Stephenie Meyer?” Kaitlyn exclaimed. “Selene, I don’t have training in Real Person Fic! How do we handle this?”
“We avoid it,” Selene growled, as Edward threw his book onto a blood-covered altar and began to chant. “Get ready to move.”
“Move where?” Kaitlyn demanded, but Selene was already gone - sprinting out into the centre of the throne room. She barrelled past Dracula and the OCs, leapt over the altar just as the copy of Twilight began to rise up into the air, and cannoned into Edward. The Twilight vampire fell back under the force of her impact, crashing to the floor - and then Selene stood up, transforming as she went.
“Kelly Mariena Ceaser Joenson,” she announced, pointing a finger at the girl. The vampire’s hair seemed to move of its own accord, swirling around her like a dark mist as if trying to compensate for the clothes that were now scattered around the unconscious Edward. “By my authority as an agent of the PPC,” Selene went on, “I charge you with flagrant violation of every canon you have come into contact with, including the nature of Ancient Rome. For these uncountable crimes, for your massacring of European geography, for your utter disregard for the rules of spelling and grammar, and for the utter host of minis you have created, I sentence both you and your ridiculous ghostly companion to death.” She paused and grinned, showing her extremely sharp teeth. “Do you have any last words.”
There was silence in the throne room, and then Kelly said, “hello why arr you nacked”
“Why does everyone always focus on that?” Selene despaired. She raised her arms over her head, and her eyes flared red.
Kelly realised something was up, and lifted her magic sword - which turned out to be exactly the wrong move. A blazing bolt of lightning crashed through the ceiling and struck the tip of the sword, lancing through Kelly’s body before she even knew what hit her. She crumpled to the floor, her skin blackened and burned.
There was a clatter of hooves as Elkus turned on the spot and made a dash for the door. “roman!” Kaitlyn snarled, whirling to face the mini-Capitoline Wolf. “Bring him down! Don’t let him get away!”
“Gladly,” the mini barked, then threw back her head and howled. “We hunt!” she bellowed, and the pack gave chase.
Kaitlyn moved quickly across the throne room, leaving the minis to their hunt. She sniffed the prone form of Edward Cullen, then wrinkled her nose in disgust. “Sparkles and glitter,” she muttered. Carefully, she began to gather up Selene’s clothes - throwing the larger items over her back, holding the smaller in her teeth.
“Leave that, my dear,” said a deep, pleasant voice, and Kaitlyn turned away from the clothes. She had most of them, anyway, there was no point continuing. Instead, she padded around the altar and gazed upon her Master. The Count had drawn himself up, ignoring the corpse of Kelly at his side, and was gazing at Kaitlyn.
“You are a beauty, aren’t you?” he murmured, and Kaitlyn agreed with him implicitly. Her tongue hanging out, she paced across the floor to his-
“Kaitlyn, freeze.” Kaitlyn stood stock still, not even wanting to turn her head to see the woman who spoke. “He isn’t your master,” Selene said, and she was right, of course - how could Kaitlyn ever have thought Dracula was her lord, when she was clearly Selene’s alone?
“Oh, but I am,” Dracula said, correctly as always, and then his gaze drifted away from Kaitlyn, though she longed for his continued regard. “And I am yours, too, am I not, lady?”
“You,” Selene said, and Kaitlyn could hear the strain in her voice. “You are…”
“It has been many years since I chanced upon you beside the Black Sea’s shore,” Dracula mused, “and you have grown fairer, as I knew you would.” The Count strode across the room and stopped before the throne. He ran a finger over the bone-wrought armrest and shook his head, distaste evident on his features. Kaitlyn whined, wishing she could comfort him, but Dracula didn’t even look at her.
“Come to me, my dear,” he said instead, his gaze fixed on Selene. “Come to me, as you did that night long ago.”
Now that Kaitlyn knew her true master, Selene’s command had no purchase on her. She glanced between the two vampires, eager to see the outcome of their confrontation - eager to see her Master reclaim his own.
Selene, naked and trembling, took a single step forward, then another - and then stopped. She drew a deep breath, reached up to brush her hair back from her face, and ran her fingers down the brasswork of the Key.
“You,” she said with great effort, “are not my master. And you are not hers.” She lifted her hand and pointed at Kaitlyn - and that was when Kaitlyn saw the two metallic devices clutched in her partner’s fist.
“This would be a lot easier if I had my sunglasses,” Selene muttered. Then, in a single motion, she swept her free hand across to pluck the neuralyzer from her fist. She squeezed her eyes shut, holding the device high, and squeezed with both hands.
The red flash of the neuralyzer was swept away by blue light, as the portal opened around Kaitlyn and sent her back to HQ.
Kaitlyn was standing by the console, arms folded, when Selene stepped through. As the pack flowed into RC #7219 around them, the two agents exchanged looks: Kaitlyn’s a glare, Selene’s undeniably sheepish.
“I took Edward back to Twilight,” the vampire said. “Dracula stayed where he was - he doesn’t remember any of it.”
Kaitlyn stayed silent.
Selene coughed. “I’m sorry about commanding you,” she said. “I didn’t realise his powers over wolves would extend to you.”
Kaitlyn stayed silent.
“I, uh.” The vampire cleared her throat. “There shouldn’t be any lingering effects, if you’re worried about that.”
“Did I not say,” Kaitlyn responded at last, “that wolf disguises were a bad idea?”
“You did,” Selene agreed in a subdued tone. Then she shook her head. “But. You didn’t know about Dracula’s powers when you said that. So you were still wrong.”
Kaitlyn held her gaze for a long moment, then shook her head, snorted in amusement, and threw the bundle of clothes to her partner. “Get dressed, already,” she said. “You’re too distracting this way.”
“I thought you said you weren’t going to ogle me any more,” Selene said, sorting through the bundle.
“And I’m trying not to,” Kaitlyn countered. “But you’ve just proved it, haven’t you? Anyone would stare if you suddenly showed up naked.”
“So it absolutely wasn’t my fault.”
Disclaimer: The PPC belongs to Jay and Acacia. The Lord of the Rings belongs to Tolkien, and the movie version to Jackson. Twilight belongs to Stephenie Meyer. Dracula belongs to Bram Stoker. Godzilla belongs to Ishirō Honda. Kelly The Roman Warrior belongs to KingAurthr2, and is quoted, paraphrased and dissected here for the purposes of parody and humour; no claim of ownership is made by Huinesoron or any other members of the PPC.
Huinesoron’s Author’s Note: So, uh, apparently the pack, and Selene, pretty much took that mission over. What can I say? The combination of wolves as the ideal disguise, three different wolf-minis (mini-Sparklewolves already existed, for the record), and Dracula, in a Selene story… yeah, there was a lot to play with. I’m afraid the badfic was rather ignored for large chunks, but frankly, I’m about 95% sure it’s a troll anyway. Not that it matters to our intrepid agents.
And just for fun, the pack consists of:
Selene and Kaitlyn - PPC agents
roman, ceaser, pilar, slawve, roman dollar - mini-Capitoline Wolves
Six unnamed snow wolves
Drackula, Draockla, Drakcola, dracikula, Darkula, dracukla, Darcula, Dracola, Drakcula, Dracokla, crackula - mini-Children of the Night
Edword, Edawrd Cullein, Twlight - mini-Sparklewolves
Agent Kaitlyn’s Constructive Criticism
Before I start: I’m aware that you’re almost certainly trolling with this fic. But in case I’m wrong, and in case anyone else reads this concrit and takes any advice from it - and, hey, in case you decide to make Kelly The Roman Warrior into a real story sometime - I’ll write this up anyway.
You had some good ideas in here, you really did. Giant monsters attacking Ancient Rome. Dracula and Edward Cullen facing off against each other. A Roman warrior meeting Dracula. But I’m afraid they were deeply hidden by the issues you have with spelling, punctuation, and grammar. Paragraphing, in particular, is non-existent - as a rule, you should start a new paragraph for every new speaker - and your lack of attention to the spelling of names draws attention away from your story.
While the idea of Edward Cullen as a psychopathic villain was entertaining, and can be justified on those grounds, your portrayal of Dracula leaves much to be desired. The character is almost always depicted as both charming and alarmingly competent; unless you planned to have the whole story be a plot of his, the way you present him simply doesn’t work. He has some good moments - his cold anger when we first meet him, with the crossbow - but the majority is just plain wrong.
Ultimately, there were far too many flaws in this story for it to be particularly readable. Nevertheless, there is the kernel of an interesting tale or two hidden in there. With some (okay, a lot) more work on your writing skills, you could definitely be onto something.