Hey guys :D LOL, I'm sorry that it's just another boring speech. The next chapter is another speech too, but it's SO much more entertaining then these first 2 chapters. After that is when the story really starts :) I'd like to thank benthefirst for reviewing! I really appreciate the feedback ;D So, on with the story we go!
"Okay, I would like you all to meet my fledgling, the fledgling I mentor, a very special fledgling indeed, Zoey Redbird, leader of the Dark Daughters and Sons." Neferet had said a little smugly, obviously wanting to embarrass me, and everyone from the House of Night started applauding. I reluctantly stood up, knowing Neferet was only sending me up there so I can feel uncomfortable. Well, Neferet obviously has some bullpoopie for me in store.
Before I could panic or freak out Zoey style, Stevie Rae elbowed me softly, winked, and said in her Okie twang with a big smile on her face, "Don't worry Z, y'all do great up there." That gave me so much more confidence. And trust me; I really needed the confidence right now. I quickly mouthed thanks to Stevie Rae and walked up nervously to the stand.
When I got up there, Neferet simply moved out of my way and I stood behind the podium, in front of hundreds of people. I looked at all of the wizard's expressions, ranging from interest, to confusion, to even hatred. That honestly didn't make me feel any better. I just wanted to go watch a movie with Stevie Rae and drink some good ol' brown pop. I took a deep breath and reluctantly started speaking.
"Hello students and staff of Hogwarts, my name is Zoey Redbird. I'm happy to meet you all today and would be glad to explain everything you need to know about the Tulsa House of Night. I'll try to cover the basics before I choose people from the audience to ask questions." I said, proud of myself that I had a good start with the whole thing. I smiled and then continued, becoming a little bit more relaxed with the whole public speaking thing.
"Okay, as Neferet pointed out before, the House of Night consists of fledglings and full grown vampyres and red fledglings and vampyres." I saw looks of confusion from the audience and saw some quiet remarks exchanged, so I added, "Yes, there is a difference between the two types, but I don't know if everyone from the House of Night are comfortable enough to have me explain. Actually, I'll send my friend Stevie Rae up here after I'm done to explain more to you about it, as long as she's comfortable with it." I started saying, and Stevie Rae gave me a thumbs up from the audience, showing that she was okay with explaining the matter I don't have the guts to explain. I smiled back at her, relieved I don't have to spill the gruesome details. Stevie Rae really is a good High Priestess, and I'm happy out of all people it was her that was made leader.
"You all might be familiar about legends about vampyres, and let me tell you this right now; we don't live up to the stereotype. Well, not exactly anyway, but Stevie Rae is the one to explain that whole mess. We don't bite people. Even if we do, those people don't Change into vampyres, the person and the vampyre will just share this special bond called an Imprint. Basically to become a fledgling vampyre you are Marked specially by our goddess Nyx. Some vampyres have affinities for the elements or other things. For example, there are several students in our House of Night that have Goddess given affinities, or gifts as you could call them. And another thing you should know; we don't all make the Change, or become a full grown vampyre. Some fledglings reject the Change, and then they die. Fledglings usually reject the change because their bodies aren't healthy or fit enough or they are away from a full grown vampyre for an extended amount of time. I won't go into detail about that, because that's another thing Stevie Rae is going to explain and I don't want to steal her thunder. Oh, and it is false that vampyres can't go into the sunlight. It does make them very uncomfortable, but they do not die. Okay, any questions?" I asked the audience. Several hands went up, not nearly as many as when Neferet asked. I pointed to a random kid in the crowd.
"You there, what's your question?" I asked him, and he responded instantly.
"Neferet said you were special. What does she mean by that?" he asked me curiously, and I groaned internally. I wished I could slap Neferet upside the head for saying that. I didn't have to look behind me to know that Neferet was smiling smugly. Cue the "OMG Zoey is not normal" talk and rumors. I sighed and eventually answered the question.
"What she means by that is that I have an affinity for all five elements and that's unheard of, especially for a fledgling." I explained, but then Damien's hand shot up. His expression looked eager to explain, and he winked at me. I smiled at him, relieved I don't have to be the one to explain my weirdness. "Well, it looks like Damien wants to explain more about it. He's the smarter one, so go ahead and this whole crazy thing, Damien." I said, and Damien stood up and started speaking loudly and clearly. He has much better public speaking skills I could ever dream of, I noted when he started speaking.
"Zoey is a very special fledgling. She is Marked exquisitely by our goddess, Nyx. She's the only fledgling in history to have an entirely filled in Mark, and the only vampyre or fledgling to have extended tattoos. She also has an affinity for all 5 of the elements, air, fire, water, earth, and spirit." Damien explained, and then sat down. I looked behind me to see that Neferet really was smiling smugly. I guess it really is her pride and joy to embarrass me. How lovely.
I faced back to the microphone and said, "Thank you Damien." I turned back to the kid and asked, "Did that answer your question?" He nodded and sat back down. I looked over the crowd and selected another kid. "You there, what is your question?"
She stood up and asked, "Neferet said that you are the head of the Dark Daughters and Sons. What does that mean?" Ha, now I can turn this right back on Neferet.
"Good question. What being the head of the Dark Daughters and Sons means that I'm a High Priestess in training, so I'm basically Neferet's successor." I explained, and I turned around to see I wiped the smile off of Neferet's face. I smiled, proud that I could knock a smile off of Neferet's face, and continued explaining. "The Dark Daughters and Sons is an elite group at the House of Night. Have you ever heard of an honor society? Well, it's really similar to that. We have 7 prefects that keep the school in check and everyone in the group meets once a month for an exclusive ritual." The girl nodded and sat back down. I noticed that only one other kid had their hand raised, so I pointed at the kid and said with a smile, "Go ahead and ask your question."
The boy spoke curiously and asked, "What is an Imprint?" Oh joy, not this question. I barely understood the whole Imprint thing myself and I'm the one who was actually Imprinted with Stark. And obviously Aphrodite is going to kill me for explaining a certain part about it.
I took a deep breath and said, "Well…, you see this is kind of hard to explain. When a vampyre bites someone, they are bonded mentally. It's like two people in one being. If one person is hurt, the other person will feel it just as bad. They can feel each other's emotions and basically, well, how to say this next part without offending two of my friends…ah, I got it. Depending what kind of relationship you have with the person, the Imprint can trigger, well, it makes you want to do physical things with the other person." I explained, and there were a couple of snickers and Aphrodite was sending me the death glare. I cringed and quickly added, "And I will say this again, depending on the relationship you have with the person. For example, if you are both girls and don't like each other very much, it will just mean you can tell when something is wrong with the other person; it will not trigger physical stuff. Well, if there is no more questions then come on up Stevie Rae." I said, eager to get away from the topic of Imprinting. Everyone clapped as I walked down from the podium and Stevie Rae walked up to it with her short blonde curls bouncing up and down.
When we crossed paths, Stevie Rae said with one of her big hearted smiles, "Good job, Z." I smiled at her and said, "Thanks Stevie Rae. You'll do great, too." See, this is why she's my best friend.