Hope gets captured by Roul, Arrianna recovers and Roul gets a gift from the queen
"My queen. Roul seems to have found Hope and Adrien."
"Very good! I would like to know his exact whereabouts before the week's end Kandria. Do you think you can handle that? Are the shipments going as planned?"
"Yes my queen and there seems to be no more mishaps. I will do my very best to find out his location for you."
"Good. Maybe I will give him my new puppy as a peace offering in exchange for Adrien's whereabouts. Tod is a bit of a headache anyway. I will just have to get me a new puppy. This one may be too weak for my liking. I will not be sending my elixir, that, my dear Kandria, is MY secret to play with."
"Yes, but maybe he can perfect it for you."
"NO! It is mine and only mine! Do you understand me?" Queen Isabella screeched. "Besides, he's not bright enough to fix something like that anyway."
"Do you wish me to bring Tod to him yet?
"Go ahead my dear, and make sure he knows that I want Adrien's location and that he is not to harm him in any way. He can do anything with Tod, he can kill him for all I care."
"Yes my queen, it shall be done."
Hope stands in front of Roul for the first time in over a year.
"How long has it been my child, no matter, it is good to see you. How has Adrien been treating you for all this time? Has he trained you in the ways of a vampire yet?"
"It is really good to see you too father, but I'm a bit worried. He said you were just going to kill me once you have me."
"Why? Of course, not my dear Hope. You are part of my family, and I will do nothing of the sort." He tells her. "Lucious, would you kindly see her to her new room, and treat her to a meal. Have you learned to feed yet without killing?"
"Yes father, he won't kill anybody at all. He feasts on animals in the forest and for some reason can eat real meat."
"He's more than a vampire isn't he?" Roul asks her kindly.
"Yes but I can't talk about him. I made a promise and I can't tell anyone."
"Ahh, morally correct, I like that in my children. It shows loyalty, that's a quality I can respect. Should you ever decide to tell me, like yourself, it will never leave my lips." Roul told her caringly. "Now go get yourself some dinner, I'm sure you will enjoy one of my slaves, he will nourish you nicely and then get some sleep. You've been through a lot and I'm sure you are tired and weak. We shall take good care of you. Go, go and eat."
He watched her walk through the doors and toward her room with Lucious. "I want to know who he is!" He told Canther after she was safely out of earshot. "I want to know everything there is to know about him. I will assign you to her well being and training. She gets whatever she wants until she sings. I need her to trust me before I kill her. Whatever you do, don't go back and try to kill him, I want you to leave him completely alone, In fact assign one of your cronies to watch his every move. Once I find out who-what he is, I will set a little trap for him and then I will kill them both." He pulls out his watch and sighs.
'This is going to be fruitful, I can tell.' He muttered under his breath.
"She's not here."
"No shit! Something happened to her. This was my favorite nightstand. It's been smashed to bits, so she was in an altercation. I suspect one of Rouls, 'children' found her and took her to him." Adrien said.
"So what do you want to do?" Gweneth asked. "You're still in no condition to fight anyone, let alone an entire tribe. And it seems I'm your only ally right now. And there's also the fact that they have this new weapon that could potentially kill you, so this would be a wasted trip and he will still kill her once he's killed you."
"No! I must go now! The longer she stays with him the more he will corrupt her and the closer she will be to death. No, I must go and try to get her. I have to at least try. She's in too much danger right now." He told her.
"I really don't think now is the right time. We need to plan this right."
"There is no 'WE!'" He told her. "I'm not dragging you into this suicide mission. Besides, what can a simple cleric do?"
"You'd be really surprised. I have been around a long time, have been in far more battles than you have and I'm a seasoned cleric. You need me. I'm not taking no for an answer, but we need to come up with a solid plan first, and you need to heal a bit more that will give us time to plan."
"I have no choice then huh?"
"None." She looked at him sternly with her hands on her hips and that mommy look in her eyes. "Is there anything you need from here, we need to have you vacate the premises for now. If they know where she was then chances are they will be back for you. You're now living with me, so take the stuff you need."
He looks around the cave with a sigh and spots the red book part way under her bed.
"Is this the book? I don't recognize this symbol."
"Yes, that's it."
He opens the cover and sees the inscription on it, sighs and puts his hand on his forehead wiping the hair from his eyes.
"It appears that a cleric sacrificed himself to her. At least if we go and get her there will be two clerics there."
"Yes but if you get stabbed by that thing again, I'm afraid neither of us will be able to heal you."
"I'll just have to take that chance."
"After all these years of being a vampire you don't have ANY allies?" She asked.
"I tend to stick to myself. I want to be a good vampire and kill the other threats. Besides that, I want to stay hidden."
"Well let's get back to my place and you can look over that book. She will need that if you are successful." She instructed him.
"If I must, then let's go."
"Yes Rasanna? Tell me you have good news."
"I have good news and bad news, which would you like first?"
"Just spit it out, will ya."
"Okay, the good news is that I can probably heal her."
"Probably?" Samaria asked her.
"It will be a mess of different spells and I'll need our weapon smith to shave some of the sword for me, but I think it could work. It is my only idea right now."
"And that's your good news, what's the bad news?"
"It seems that our sword is made from the evil, and might I add, extinct, forest elves with the purpose of infecting and killing vampires, a very powerful sword indeed. You just don't see this kind of magic anymore, not since the great war."
Samaria sighed in frustration.
"It sounds as if you admire these evil elves."
"What I admire is the strength of their magic, I could care less about them." Rasanna told her.
"Well, do what you can. I know if anybody can do it, you can. But do it quickly, I'm sure she has quite the story to tell."
"I might be able to wake her for a few minutes but she will be exhausted no doubt. There's also no telling how long she will be awake. Might I say, she is very strong indeed to make it here from wherever she came from infected like that."
"She is strong, and you're good, so make it happen!"
"I think we'll have to go in at his weakest point. I still don't like the fact that you're going to be there."
"Always the hero, huh Adrien?" Gweneth told him with a smile. "We must do this as a team and besides I don't think he would expect a team of just two. I would think he's preparing for more than just us."
"I think that'll just make him beef up security even more and that's not good for us."
"Yes, but he only has so many vampires in his tribe, they'll be spread pretty thin." She said. "Maybe I should just go and visit him, I can make up some excuse to go and see him."
"To risky. If he saw where you brought me or if Canther is there he'll know right away who you are."
"Yeah, I forgot about him."
"I know the place pretty well and there's a back way in. I don't know, it's probably best to use the front door. He would never expect that. Do you mind killing? Because we'll probably have to do a lot of that."
"I've killed before; remember I was in the war, or at least around when it happened." She said. "I think maybe we should wait till things quiet down a bit. He's expecting you to come after her right away and I don't think he'll kill her until he has you. I think that you're his main goal and he'll use her as bait. Let's just wait and see what his next move is. I really think it's you he's after."
"Let's just say you're right and he wants to use her as bait to lure me in, what then? He'll be set up for war, that will get him prepared for me, and if I know him it'll all be overkill, he likes to be dramatic. That also gives him more time to turn her against me and forget everything I taught her."
"You need trust yourself more, from what I can tell you taught her well."
Demetrium marvels at his handy work in the greenhouse. 'It's hard to believe just a week ago I couldn't do any of this.' Roul walks in behind him wearing his good red brocade jacket.
"Fantastic work my friend! I will be proud to show this off tonight for my special guests. How is your training coming with the fighters?"
"I'm not as sore anymore, but it's still taxing my energy levels."
"That's excellent! As you train it will get easier my friend." Roul told him. "I would like to invite you and your girl to a family luncheon today at two. My chef will be preparing something special for all my children."
"Well thank you father." Demetrium said smiling. "I will see you there father."
"I'm afraid I won't be attending, I have other things to tend to in town. I will see you later I have to watch you train to see if you're capable for your new assignment yet. I also have to speak with you about Betty."
"Ok, she's waking up." Rasanna told Samaria in her room.
"Baby, tell me what happened."
"I got the sword after-" She paused to gather her strength. "This evil queen caught me and tried to feed me to a-" She took a couple of deep breaths. "An honorable werewolf. We must get word to Gareth and his pack." She groaned in pain as her wound festered under the blanket. "To kill the-." She closed her eyes and her head fell limp to the pillow.
"That's as much as you're going to get right now, she's out again."
"I don't understand, who's Gareth? Does she mean we have to kill the queen? Can we try to wake her again now?"
"I'm afraid that will put too much strain on her. I'm still working on the proper healing spells."
"How's that going by the way?"
"I'm just waiting on the weapon smith to come back with the shavings; He's sure taking his sweet time." Rasanna told her sounding agitated.
"I will go and check on his progress, it should be an easy task. Something must be wrong." Samaria said as she left the room.
Samaria walked back into Rasanna's room.
"He's been trying to get shavings from the sword but he said that it looks like the magical enchantment makes this sword indestructible. I'm not sure he will be able to do anything with it. He's going to try some different spells that could help but said he's not getting his hopes up."
"Well, I NEED those shavings to find an antidote for this ailment. Right now I can only bring her in and out of consciousness and that's dangerous in itself. She's basically in a coma."
"We will need answers soon. Hopefully you can heal her. We need her. We HAVE to know what happened to her and we need to know more about this queen she talked about."
"I will keep working on her, there's a few things I haven't tried yet. I have packed her wound with some of the herbs that I know about. It seems to be helping her a little so I'm going to try some holistic healing along with a couple of other spells I know."
"Good, get to work. I shall leave you now. I have other matters to tend to."
"Roul, The queen has sent a gift for you, in exchange for some [. . .] information." Kandria told him.
"What is this gift that she sent with you, you've peaked my excitement girl." He said standing from his 'throne'. "I welcome anything that the queen would send me."
"Before I show it to you there are certain conditions."
"Tell me girl." He said in elation.
"We need to find the location of Adrien."
"I see." He said sitting down with his hands folded together, excitement leaving his eyes.
"She expects the location by the end of the week and she requests that you give up your quest to kill him, for now. She wants to deal with him."
"I can't tell you how much that disappoints me." He said with his face wrinkling in disgust.
"Those are the terms of this gift."
"I'm, of course going to do what she wants. I just wish those weren't the terms." He said with his head down. "Could there be any other terms with which she would agree too?"
"None. Even if you turn down this gift, that's what the queen wishes and you WILL obey. I'd take the gift and swallow your pride. You're now playing with the big dogs so I would strongly suggest you stay in your kennel if you want a treat. The queen is expecting results, and you would be wise to tell me all you know about Adrien."
He pulls out his pocket watch, looks at it and sighs.
"He's in a cave by the ocean about three miles from Akart. It's about a mile into the sea inside a giant wall of rock. Now show me this gift that you have for me."
She turns and walks out of the elaborate chamber and through the ten foot solid wooden doors. She comes back with a human in chains and three other girls holding the reigns.
"What is this?!" He stood up in anger. "You had me give up valuable information for a human in chains?" He said throwing a fit.
"Let me explain, would ya." She told him. "He's not just a simple human. He's a full blooded werewolf, a strong one at that. He's gotten out of his chains twice now." She lied. "You can hold him in your dungeon and train this little mutt to do whatever you want. Put him in an arena and fight him. He's strong. You can throw other werewolves in with him and he will tear them apart."
"So why does she want to give it to me? What's wrong with it?" He asked her.
"He's just unruly but strong, she really wants that information."
"Oh, I see." He said with a renewed sense of self worth. 'The queen thinks I'm worth a gift such as this that is good news. Maybe I can use this new alliance to my advantage somehow.' He thinks as he stands in front of his throne.
"Are you satisfied now?" She asked him.
"Yes, yes. This will do nicely. Canther!" He yelled knowing he is never far away.
"Yes father?" He asked. Roul pointed to the human. "Take that, over to our most secure cell."
"I would suggest you get a couple more men." Kandria told him.
"Splendid! Canther, go get a couple of your cronies and bring him to his cell, and make it quick, I want to get her back to her queen with her new information." A couple more vampires came in to take control of the werewolf.
"The queen will be very pleased with your decision, you may look forward to more gifts as she sees fit. Thank you for the information. I will take my leave now unless you have more information to share."
"No Kandria, go tell the queen what I know. I'm sure she will reward you well."
"Thank you and good day."
Kandria and her girls walked out of his chamber without another word. 'He's his problem now.' She grins as she walks out of the house.
Guwenyth walked into town to do her regular shopping for groceries and other goods. Next to the statue in the center of town is a giant board filled with jobs and adventurers looking for work. She thinks maybe she could enlist some help for this rescue mission, or maybe even to help take on this Kibilt situation.
A piece of scrap paper catches her eye and looks promising.
'Experienced group of adventurers looking for interesting and challenging tasks
Two barbarians, a mage, a druid and a bard.
Meet at the Oatbarrel Inn usually at night.
Make sure to bring details of mission. Ask for Garl.'
'Well, this is certainly going to be a challenge, that's for sure.' She thought to herself. 'This looks promising, I'll have to go and talk to them.'
She spent the rest of the day shopping for food and supplies.
"I want a team to go and scope the place out. I want to know every move he makes." Queen Issabella said. "Janelle, I would like to see you lead the team. Remember, nobody makes a move until I tell you too. Take two runners while one informs me the other can watch and when she returns to you then send the other runner. I want this done as efficiently as possible. I expect results soon. I also want to know what skills he has and everything that he does." She said sternly then she stood. "Nobody touches him unless I tell you too. Is that clear?"
"Yes my queen. And if he spots us?"
"He won't because if he does you better not let me ever see you again, do you understand?"
"I will obey." She bowed as she walked backward out of her chamber.
Jordan walked into the chamber.
"Yes my queen?"
"I wish to try another serum. I would like you to make a serum that makes a werewolf vampire hybrid. Maybe that will make them more obedient to me. How feasible would that be? Can it be done? And remember, I don't like hearing the word no."
"W-w-well I can certainly try, but it may be even more difficult than your last request. Should I keep working on your other serums?"
"You better!" She yelled. "I want to start seeing results. I don't think this last one worked right, you better keep trying on that one."
"My queen, I would just like to say that my team is spread pretty thin as it is. We are still working on the addictive drug as well as the one to make your puppies loyal and obedient to you. Could you please supply me with some more help, even just workers would help. I may be able to make progress more quickly with some extra hands. I would prefer people with a medical background if at all possible."
"I will see if there are any people in my dungeons with some kind of medical training and send them to you." She sighs.
Tod lay down on his cot in a brand new dungeon and watched as a human meandered down the hall past all the other prisoners and stop at his door.
"You look really strong, how did you get caught?"
Without getting up he spoke.
"I was ambushed by a bunch of vampires during a battle. The queen experimented on me with some different drugs."
"That's awful." She said holding one of the bars. "Why would they abduct an elf?"
"I'm actually a werewolf. You should be afraid of me."
"Why? Are you going to try to kill me?" She asked.
"Who are you?" He asked while sitting up on his elbows looking into her eyes.
"I'm sorry, my name's Hope. Hope Ivy. What's yours?"
"I'm Tod. Why are you so interested in who I am?" He asked. "Aren't you a vampire?"
"Yes but I don't kill, well except for one. He sacrificed himself to me so that I could gain skills and make a change in this world. I'm still not sure what he means by changing the world. I'm just a simple girl who got caught up in the wrong place at the wrong time."
"How do you feel about werewolves then?"
"There fine, I don't mind as long as they don't try to kill me." She told him.
"Well, guess what." He said laying back down. "Most of us will."
He got back up on his elbows and took a good long look at her innocent face. Then he sat up and crossed his arms over his knees clasping his hands together.
"I wouldn't try to kill you. You seem like a nice wolf."
He looked at her with a warm smile.
"You know, I don't think I would. Why are you down here anyway?"
"Roul said I could go anywhere in this complex."
"Did he now? Why would you come to the dungeon?"
"I was curious. I wanted to see the type of people he collected as slaves. You can tell a lot about a person by the people he surrounds himself with, even more by his enemies. You seem good why would he want you. He seems to value honor."
"Don't let him fool you. He's a bad man. I was traded to him for information leading to some guy named Adrien's, whereabouts."
"Yeah, why? Do you know him?" He asked.
"Yeah, he's my mentor." She said in fear. "He's as good as you are?" He stood up and walked to the bars. "He's the one who taught me to feed off animals. I just now found out that humans and elves are so much more nourishing, but he also taught me not to kill."
"He sounds like another good vampire too. That explains why I like you. You better go before you get caught down here. Try to get word to him that the queen is looking for him."
"I'm not sure Roul will let me go."
"You must get word to him before it's too late." He moved his hand to hold her hand. "Go, go. You must find a way."
"Thank you, I will be back to see you again. I will try to get the word to him. Again, thank you." She said as she almost ran out of the hall.
Roul called for Hope.
"Yes?" She said to him.
"How have you been treated so far my dear." Roul asked her sympathetically.
"You all have been really good to me so far. But I need to get out of here for a little while. I feel cooped up in this house and I need to go outside for a while. I also want to see if I can find Adrien and tell him that you're not evil and that you don't want to kill me." She told him.
He sat back in his chair and clasped his hands in front of him.
"I see." He said.
"I won't leave, I like it here. It's so much more comfortable here than it was at his place."
He put two fingers together, put them up to his pointy chin, and paused to think for a little bit.
"Pleeease. I'll come back, I promise, I like this place."
"I would have someone follow you for your protection. I've been hearing rumors that he's out to kill you. He thinks I have corrupted you and he now needs get rid of you. So, just in case that's true I want to send protection with you. I'm not saying it's a fact, but just a rumor, and I trust my informants." He told her with concern.
"Yay!" She squeaked.
"Your protection will stay out of sight so Adrien doesn't see them."
"And I want you back as soon as your satisfied. If he does attack you I want you to run back here as fast as possible and let my best guys deal with him. I will tell them not to kill him. How does that sound?" He asked her.
"That sounds reasonable. But I still don't think he wants to kill me, but I guess I did bad, so he now has to put me down." She said with a single tear rolling down her cheek. 'Maybe he found out that I killed that cleric and now has to put me down. I don't know where I'd be without him. I might be dead if it weren't for him. I hope he doesn't want to kill me.' she thought to herself.
"Just as long as your careful. Let's plan for you to go out roaming in a couple of days. Okay?"
'He could be dead by then! But I can't look too anxious to go.'
"We can't go any sooner?" She asked.
"No, my dear. Now if you'll excuse me, I have other matters to tend to. Don't worry, you can go in a couple of days. That will have to be good enough.
She sighs and walks off.
Demetrium walks down the street. He watches people walk by and go about their business. They all seem a bit nervous. An ogre walks on the other side of the street. He looks homeless and dressed in rags and no shoes. He walks past the restaurant that he frequented with Betty. Right there in front of him a figure walked up to the ogre, screeches and spews acid from his mouth and melts the ogre right there in front of him. Then the man turns into the ogre. Right there in broad daylight. He stopped dead in his tracks and stared at this atrocious sight. Onlookers started ducking into the nearest buildings they could find. Demitrium followed suit and ducked into a home that was right next to him. He knew he couldn't handle it. He walked to the window to look outside and saw no ogre in sight. 'This is not good, I have to tell Roul about this. I just hope he doesn't get mad at me'