the world of buffy the vampire slayer is not my intellectual property. no profit intended or made. title comes from the greek word 'arktoi', which means 'bears', and stands for the young girls in Artemis's service.


At seven, she lit torches in the temple every morning and every evening, watching her mother pour wine and grain onto the altar.

At nine, she wailed with her sisters at funerals; spun wool and was guarded in the women's rooms; cooked.

At eleven, she was captured in war, sold to a potter; learned to spin pots, paint pots, slaved and made money; and distant family bought her freedom.

At thirteen, she was taken to Eleusis.

At fifteen, something in her awoke, something, different. She went to the temple of Artemis, unseen, and dedicated her mantle there. She was told that soon, if she was lucky, she'd be married, captive or no, and that Hera's realm was now her own.

She spun round, kicked her leg high, and crushed the man's grotesque face in. He was a mercenary, from abroad, and he had tried to bite her. Her heart raced, her spirit was alive. Hera was nowhere to be found; instead Artemis, Athena, Ares. Gods of war. Not likely a bride. She dragged him out of the temple, so not to defoul it, and staked her very first vampire.