I never thought that one day I’d end up really liking being what I am. When I first phased, I was in shock… not only because of what I became but also because no one thought I could ever become a shape shifter among the tribe, not even me. It took me a while before accepting who I am and really start enjoying it to the fullest. The acceptance became real when I found out about my father. The time I spent away from the reservation after that made me realise how much it’s become a part of me now that I can’t take for granted. As odd as it may seem, Mark and Caroline are kind of indirectly partly responsible for this too. Even if I couldn’t tell them, they still accepted me for who I am (eating a lot, warm and all), they never said anything or complained about it.

The speed itself it’s amazing. It’s so freeing to just run through the forest at full speed even if only for patrols, but it’s even more of a rush when one of them ventures too close to our land and we get to kill it. Our strength is real useful too. When we need to carry heavy stuff around, we can do it all by ourselves without having to call on the help of others if it’s not too big. That big log that I found for our totem took only Jake and I to carry when it usually would have taken at least 10 people probably to carry if not more. Our legends even go to mention that the color of our fur matches our personality.

The fact that we’re also much warmer than a normal human also allows us to stand in the cold practically in our shorts. I could stand in winter outside wearing just my shorts and I wouldn’t catch a cold or get sick. Practically all of my brothers and I now have short hair too since it’s less annoying running around with shorter fur. We also each got the tribe’s tattoo that was passed through generations of shape shifters. It brings a sense of belonging to a group that know we risk our lives every time we have to kill a vampire on our land to keep our tribe safe. It also brought a new sense of reality to the past legends of our tribe that are about the cold ones or the great spirit warriors. I used to think that they were just that, legends, but now I believe that all legends have some truth behind them: either telling a whole event that happened in itself or just part of it built to teach us a lesson. There’s so much history we can learn with all our ancestor’s legends.

From the moment I truly accepted what I became until the need slows down, I will be here to defend our tribe. It could take forever and as long as I still phase, I will be there to defend us with either my brothers or their children.

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