Disclaimer: I own nothing.
"Did you pick up anything useful from his thoughts, Edward? Anything to help find this Willow?"
"It was odd, I could hear him thinking about his injuries and about what was happening to him now, but there were times which seemed like he had a censored memory. It wasn't blank like Bella, more like the snow from televisions set to a bad channel. Sorry."
"Don't worry about it, I will talk to Leah. Thank you for trying."
"See you at home."
"Leah, wake up."
"How is he?"
"He is awake, but can barely talk. He mentioned a girl that must have been out there with him. He was very worried about her. Did you see or sense anyone else out there?"
"I didn't. I can ask the rest to look though."
"Thanks. Her name is Willow. You saved his life; he would not have survived if you hadn't called me. I know how hard it was for you to do that."
"What's his name?"
"I'm not sure. Edward was having trouble with some of his thoughts, and he was having a hard time saying what he did say, I didn't want to question him too much."
"Can I see him?"
"Not today, but tomorrow you should be able to see him, by then he should be able to speak more."
"Just doing my job. If anything changes I will let you know. And please see if this Willow is out there. She will have been out there for several days, so she may have wandered."
"If she is out there, we will find her."
Xander fought back the panic. He started a relaxing and concentration technique that Anya had taught him. Given, the original reason he learned it was for a much different purpose, but it worked equally well for calming a panicking mind as it did for improving sex.
Review the facts:
-He was in a hospital in Washington, several states away from where he left Willow.
-There is no record of a city called Sunnydale in California. One in Texas and a Sundale in Arizona, but he had no hometown.
-There were no records so far that he ever existed. No birth certificate and no driver's license. He had left any forms of identification in his car when he had rushed to talk with Willow, so he didn't have any physical copies. The cop who came to talk with him checked, and his driver's license number belonged to a 55 year old Mexican woman. They were still checking the social security number, but Xander was not hopeful.
-The woman who saved him was hot. Really really hot.
That last point was mostly to help calm him. So far, the doctors were treating it as a form of amnesia due to the trauma. If it wasn't for the scars on his body and the vividness of his memories, then he might be convinced that the doctors were right, that he was simply forming a fake history to cope with the memory loss. The only doctor who seemed to disagree was Carlisle, the one who was there when he woke up. Amnesia was a good excuse, though, when he was asked what happened before his 'accident'. He couldn't tell them that his best friend was trying to burn the world to cinders. He just left it at he was in California.
Leah, the one who pulled him out of the ocean, had been by to visit him every day. When the doctors came in, she excused herself so they could talk with their patient in privacy. All except Doctor Cullen, she stayed for his visits for some reason. Not that Xander minded. They were able to talk, well she talked and Xander listened and asked the occasional question. He must have punctured a lung or broken a rib because he could only say ten words before the pain was unbearable. One question, however, forced Xander to endure the pain. It was too important to know the truth.
" ... which flew off the rock and hit Seth right in the forehead. He was so embarrassed he wouldn't come out of his room. We laughed for weeks afterwards." Leah paused for a moment, and then continued, "We have covered astronomy, bacon, chiefs, desserts, Elmo, and family. What do you want to talk about next?"
"Ghost stories. Know any scary legends?"
Silence permeated the hospital room. Leah sat there thoughtful, but not as if she was racking her brain for a story like the last topics. No, she sat there as if she was trying to come to a decision. With a glance to the shut door, Leah began her story. Something felt off about it to Xander, like there was something she was holding back.
"A long time ago, there were more than just humans and cute furry squirrels roaming these lands. There were dangerous beasts, creatures that towered over the tallest trees that could crush a village with only a few steps. Creatures that were as smarter than most people and could steal into your room and suck your soul from your mouth. Creatures that wanted nothing more than to bloody the world."
Xander concentrated harder on the words Leah was saying, and on the words she left out. This had the feel of a speech Giles had given before, and he feared it would be too similar for his liking.
"The tribes protected themselves the best that they could, and the threats that came were driven off or killed. Often it was at the cost of many good warriors, but we were resolute and persisted over all that came. Then the cold ones came.
"We didn't know what happened at first. We were expecting traders from the Shawhuite tribe to trade on their regular day, fish for furs. We had gotten a good catch, so we were eager for them to arrive. Except they never came. We waited for a day, and when they had still not showed up, we were beginning to be anxious. Our fish were starting to spoil, and dried fish did not trade as well as the fresh ones. We sent a few of your warriors to investigate, and they returned as pale as a freshly drained deer. From one night to the other, the Shawhuite tribe was destroyed. Traders that were supposed to bring goods laid on the floor of their cabins, red covering the entire room. Wives with their entrails spread across their beds. Children without one or two of their limbs strewn over the yard like broken and scattered toys. Over a hundred lost their lives in that massacre. We prepared for war against the creatures. We hoped the tribe was killed because they were unprepared, that our foreknowledge would help save our tribe.
“When the remnants of the neighboring Jualiuta tribe stumbled into our village 5 days later, we learned more about them. They had the form of a person, and the voice of a man, but they could move quicker than a jackrabbit fleeing from a hawk. They reaped the people as a sickle, ripping out throats with a gleeful laugh before sucking the warm blood from the open veins. There were two of them of them, each one moving through the panicking crowd quickly, never staying at one corpse longer than a few seconds before appearing before another member of the tribe. From the warning we had given the tribe earlier, they knew these creatures might be coming so they were prepared to flee if the monsters came. We think 50 were able to escape the village, but only 7 arrive to tell us the tale. This was something we could not fight like the other dangers we had fought before. Our weapons had no effect on them, and they moved too fast for our warriors to combat them hand to hand. Many started to fear for our lives, for if these things decided our homes were next, we would be destroyed as well.
"Our elders began to pray to the spirits of our ancestors and to the Great Spirits, pleading for salvation. It was Wolf who answered our cries. He came in the night and transformed the fiercest and most loyal members of our tribe into wolves to fight the terrors of the night. The first pack, eight strong, were taught by Wolf himself how to hunt, to fight, and to be one. For three days the pack prepared. When the creatures came to our village on the night of a full moon, we were ready for them. The 8 members of the pack attacked the two creatures. Where the spears and arrows of the tribe had failed to puncture their skin, the teeth of the newly created wolves burned through their cold hide. The battle raged forever, it seemed. The cold ones beat and ripped through the pack, trying to destroy the new protectors. The pack responded with biting and slamming the cold ones into submission. When the battle came to an end, 2 wolves remained, with one cold one dead and the other fleeing for his life, injured. The tribe was safe for the moment, and the 2 remaining pack members returned to their human form.
"Wolf returned and congratulated us on our victory. He warned us that there were more cold ones that would come, but he promised that whenever the cold ones would come close, more of the tribe would be chosen to fight against them and keep the village and region safe. They would be called to protect the people who lived in this region from the cold ones. So for generations the Quileute tribe patrolled these forests to ward off the attacks of the cold ones." Leah finished her tale and looked at Xander hesitantly, as if she was waiting for a specific response.
Xander chose his next words carefully; he would need to be careful if he wanted to find out the truth. "Good story. Did the cold ones ever come back?" Xander prompted, doing his best to hide the pain that came from speaking too much.
"Several times, but a short while before every attack more were called to the pack. Wolf kept his promise. The pack has been able to kill or beat back every threat. When the settlers came, they brought tales with them of the cold ones, but they called them vampires. So when you sleep at night, and hear a howl of the wolf through your window, know that the Quileute tribe is hunting vampires, and keeping the people safe."
"Is it true, are there vampires here?" Xander could barely contain the wince of pain, and all of his strength and willpower was keeping him from coughing up a lung. He needed to know, though.
"It is a tale, so don't worry about it," she answered, but not really answering the question. Her smile that she had been wearing dropped when she looked at Xander and saw his obvious pain. "We will start up with H when I come again. Rest up and keep your strength back."
"Don't forget Twinkies," was Xander's last request.
Parting with thoughtful smile, Leah sought out someone she really did not want to see. But circumstances required it.
"Carlisle, Xander might know about your kind," she stated without any preamble. "Something he said made it seem like he expected your kind to really exist. Can you check to see if he is in any danger from the others?"
"I will look into it. There are a lot of thing about Xander that don't make much sense. I will let you know what I find out."
"We will kill them all. We will give no quarter and we will offer no mercy. The only way to survive is to remove the threat completely. Anything less and we leave ourselves vulnerable to their retaliation. We must work together to survive."
"Of course, my love. Of course."
A/N: The legend is made up by me, and should not be construed as anything historical.