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Full Moon Kisses:A Full Moon Novel(8)

By:Ellen Schreiber

"No," I said, "not anyone."
Brandon couldn't be just like anyone else now that he was a werewolf. And because he used his strength and powers for the good of others instead of becoming a monster like Nash had only made him that much dearer to me.
"I don't want this attention. It's not normal," he said. "But I do like helping people." Brandon was clearly astonished that saving the boy at the zoo had brought him sudden fame. So it wasn't just the full moon that changed his life-everything was different now.
"You can be a hero, too, as a human," I said. "You saved me from the wolves before you were … "
"And if you hadn't, none of this would have happened." I still felt guilty for being the cause of his torment. If I'd heeded Dr. Meadows's warning, Brandon wouldn't have to deal with this condition.
"But then you might not be standing here," he said. "Don't worry." He took my hand. "I don't regret it for a minute."
I squeezed his hand back.
"It's only three weeks to the next full moon," I assured him. "You'll take the serum and all this might go away."
"I'll take the serum," he continued. "And then we'll know. Right?"
"And maybe we can get more for Nash."
"Always thinking of others," he said.
I shrugged my shoulders.
"But I agree. We need to help him be cured just as much as we need to make sure I am."
I put my arm around his waist and leaned into him. He was as giving as I'd want any boyfriend to be, as good a person as he was a sexy werewolf. I knew I'd miss the side of Brandon that came out under the full moon, but it was more important for him to lead a normal life than it was for me to get a werewolf's kiss.
The following Monday, Brandon caught up to me before school. "My father is coming again," he said. "This Friday."
"That is great news," I said. "I bet you'll be glad to see him."
"I will be. But … "
"But what?"
"I think he's coming because I didn't take the serum during the last full moon. He's on his way to New York for a meeting but is stopping here first. He doesn't understand why I didn't take the medicine then."
"Well, you had good reason. We were trying to help Nash remember, and we needed you to be in werewolf form. And it's less than three weeks to the next full moon. Let him know you'll take it then."
"I will. But I kind of feel bad. He made this for me so quickly, and I didn't use it."
"He'll understand."
"I'm not so sure. He doesn't like it when I don't do what he says."
"No parent does," I said.
"But since he is coming, I'll talk to him about making some more serum for Nash."
Brandon had told me a few days ago that he would ask his dad for more serum, but hearing him say it again-when his father was coming into town-made it really hit home. Maybe we really could help Nash after all. "You would do that for him? You are amazing." I was so pleased that Brandon saw the urgency in the situation and wanted to help Nash again. "It's so generous of you. He doesn't have anyone helping him out."
"Except you," he said.
"I don't feel like I'm much help. Besides, you'd be the one really helping him. And your father."
"I understand what he's going through. He really wants a chance to be normal again. I know he wants it as badly as I do, if not more."
"You don't want it as much as Nash does?" I pressed him.
This time he shrugged his shoulders. "Being able to communicate with wolves has its advantages."
I was excited that he finally admitted to me a part of what he liked about being a lycan.
"But there are just as many downsides," he said. "I don't know if it's worth it."
"Well, regardless, you'll always be my alpha male."
Nash found me taking my study hall in the library as I was trying to catch up on some of my homework. Studying and my lessons were taking a backseat to all the chaos that was going on around me. Luckily I managed to stay focused in class and keep up with my lessons as much as I could so I hadn't fallen too far behind. I knew my grades needed to remain high as these last two years of school were so important for my entrance into college.
He sat down beside me with some books in tow: Witches and Werewolves and Supernatural Creatures and Their Heritage.
"That's not your usual reading," I commented. "I'd expect you to be reading Sports Illustrated."
"I'm trying to find some way to fix this. The next full moon is only a few weeks away," he whispered, setting the books down on the table.
He was dreading his impending transformation. I could see it in his eyes. They were intense and focused on finding answers.
"Is Brandon trying to get some answers, too?" he asked.
"Yes, he's trying," I said.
"My parents are getting suspicious. My dad says I eat like an elephant, and my mom says I'm eating her out of house and home."
I nodded. "That is happening to Brandon, too."
"And I'm starting to run faster at practice and hit farther than I have before."
"Wow," I said, "you must like that."
"I do. I want to be great. But is hitting home runs worth what I have to go through once a month? The coach thinks I'm juicing," he said. "I could get kicked off the team. Yes, I want to be fast and strong, but not like this. Besides, I can't be a major league player and not be able to play during a full moon because I'm hiding in the woods like a dog."
Nash was tense, and he brushed his hand through his hair anxiously. I felt for him and really wanted to see his pain and stress go away.
He opened one of the books. "I'm hoping there is something in here that can help. I've searched the internet, but nothing has helped me figure this out. I ran and ran to purge my body of this strength and energy, but I didn't even get tired. I just wound up feeling more energized."
"Have you gone to a doctor?" I asked.
"Are you crazy? They'd lock me up. I don't want to be in a funny farm. I'd rather hide in the woods."
I shook my head, almost in despair.
"What is Brandon doing-besides saving kids? I bet he likes this, doesn't he?"
"Why would you say such a thing?"
"C'mon, you can tell me. It's obvious. He can be a hero."
"He's not like that at all."
"Aww … he likes this stuff. I can see it. Charming the wolves and getting all this attention. No one knew who he was a few weeks ago-except for you."
"How can you be so callous?" I asked. "If anyone would understand, I'd think it would be you. This has been hell for him, too."
He nodded his head. "You're right. My moods are so erratic. You have to take what I say with a grain of salt. I don't always feel like myself, you know?"
"I know-this is really frustrating for you both."
"So has Brandon found anything worth trying?" he asked.
I wanted to tell him so badly about Brandon's father and the possible cure, but I couldn't. It was privileged information, and it wasn't my news to tell. I could only assure Nash that I was here to help and anything that I could do, I would.
"Nothing that's certain yet. If we do find something that works-you'll be the first to know."
"The full moon is coming. Less than three weeks away. I can't go through this again, Celeste."
I sat in the library with him as he checked through the books for ideas. Once again I was distracted from my homework, busy dealing with the effects of being friends with the new generation of Legend's Run's werewolves.
* * *

A few days passed and I was looking forward to Dr. Maddox's arrival on Friday, hoping he could help Brandon. Since Dr. Maddox was going to be coming to town on a late flight, Brandon invited me over to his house for dinner and to wait for his father. Brandon's grandparents were dining out with another couple, so we'd have the place to ourselves.
Brandon and I had a cozy meal together in the kitchen.
"It's like our own home," I said, checking on cookies I'd placed in the oven. He drew me in and pulled some cookie dough off my fingers. Then he ate the cookie dough.
"Yum," he said. He leaned into me and kissed me. I hugged him and patted him with an oven mitt I had on one hand.
"It would be cool to have our own place someday," he said suddenly.
"You think so?" I asked.
"Yes," he said.
I was so touched that Brandon was thinking about the future-our future.
"Ivy and Abby were talking about college and how we all should go to the same university," I said.
"I hadn't thought about that."
"Ivy and Abby," he said. "But that's flattering that they'd like to include me."
"I think you are growing on them. Finding Abby's dog. Saving a little boy's life. What's not to like about you?"
"The fact that I'm a werewolf," he said. Suddenly his mood changed.
"But we're trying to fix that."
"I know. On one hand, I want to take the serum and get it over with-see if it really works. On the other hand, I dread it. If it doesn't work-"
"We don't have to think of that now. Let's plan on it working."
He laid his hand on top of mine. "I still feel guilty about not taking it last full moon. My dad made this cure for me, and I didn't take it. I'm sure he's really upset."
"I'm sure once you explain, he'll understand. He's coming here tonight to help. And besides, he's your father. You must miss him. It will be great for you to have him here with you."