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|Leon waited in his room for the female to come. All he wanted right then was to be out with his brothers, but he had an ‘appointment’. He was never nice with the females, never gentle. He made sure they knew how much he hated the meaningless sex. They weren’t to talk, not even make a sound and he would never look them in the eye.
“Come in,” he snarled when he sensed the presence. He tried not to hiss when he saw that this female was only just past her transition. She was young, very young, yet not young enough to bear a child.
“My lord?” she called from the doorway, her eyes scanning the room. Leon willed a light on so she could see. Her moss coloured eyes widened when she saw him, no doubt because of his size. She wore the traditional mating robe, it fell past her feet, white and marred with gleaming rubies. She was so small.
To scare her more for thrills, he rose from the bed and approached her. She had to tilt her head back to look at him; the hood to her robe fell from her head, revealing a mane of blonde locks and a face that would have stunned a human.
“You do not look at me!” he snapped and she quickly looked away.
“I am sorry my lord, this is my first-“
“You do not speak to me!” he heard her sharp intake of breath and a whimper, but he felt no guilt. She would gain from this, he would not. “Bed. Now,” he ordered her.
She complied tripping over her own feet. When she was seated on the bed, her head down, Leon stripped himself of his robe and approached her. He thought it was such a waste; she was so young and fragile. But she was no better than the others, only after one thing.
“Remove your robe,” he told her and she did with shaky hands.
Her naked body was small, so small he could wrap one of his arms around her. He knew she was untouched, for he would smell another on her. But most of his females were virgins, pure bred for reproduction. His throat was burning with thirst so he forced himself to get on with it. He approached the bed and felt he had to be more gentle with this one. He lifted her small body and placed her on her stomach, spreading her legs. When he entered her, she whimpered and he could smell her tears. He felt guilt for the first time and had to pull away.
“Relax, I wont hurt you,” he said as warmly as he could and she took some deep breathes. But when he tried again, he could not do it. He stood off the bed and pulled her up with him. He wrapped her robe back around her shaking body and stroked her golden hair.
“I have failed you,” she cried, shaking in his arms
“You have not. You will tell the Chosen that you performed and when you don’t conceive it will be a mishap only. We clear?”
“The hell you cant!” he snapped and she flinched away from him, “Sorry. Look just do it okay. Your too young for this and frankly not prepared.” she cried harder. He wiped her tears away and looked into her sad eyes, hating what he had done. He wasn’t a monster, but in her eyes he saw the fear.
“Do you want this?” he asked her and he saw her hesitation, “No lying,” he added. She slowly and reluctantly shook her head, Leon sighed and let her go turning for the bathroom. She pulled the lapels of her robe closer to herself.
“My lord?” she whispered
“Hmm?” he turned his back on her, gathering his robe off the floor.
“Would you still like to take my vein?” she asked him, her voice close to him. He turned slowly to see her looking into his eyes, her fear was gone. She was... thankful.
“Would this please you?” he asked her, his throat burning stronger with thirst. She smiled, her fangs flashing and nodded her head. He couldn’t say no, not only because he was thirsty, but it would help when she was examined. Because after sex, Leon almost always fed. He nodded and lent down to her height. She tilted her head to the side, allowing him access to her neck. When his nose traced the skin on her neck she placed her hands on his broad shoulders. His body flinched from the contact, her touch was soft and gentle. He never let anyone touch him, but he liked this touch.
“My lord?” she whispered in his ear.
“Leon,” he corrected her, hating his title.
“Leon... Thank you,” she said so kindly it broke his heart.
Never had anyone thanked him before. He didn’t like the feeling, it was too foreign. So before she could say anymore he sank his fangs into her artery in one swift movement. She gasped at first but then gently ran her hands through his hair. Her blood was as he expected, pure. A wine to his lips, medicine to his throat. He felt it travel throughout his body, easing his shakes and strengthening his muscles and bones. Although it was not human blood, which he craved the most. It was enough to keep him strong.
The door to his room suddenly flew open nearly off the hinges; Leon ripped his mouth away from the girl’s throat and glared at the door. Tate stood in the doorway, his face glowing with excitement. Leon knew they had found something and his blood boiled in response.
“Uh, Sorry to disturb.”
“Never mind that. What is it?” Leon asked
“We have something for you, my lord,” Tate said, leaving the room to give Leon his privacy.
Leon wiped his mouth with the back of his hand and reached for his clothes. The girl was still standing, her hand pressed to her neck. She was smiling, no doubt from the bite which fills the victim with natural endorphins.
“Your name?” he asked her, pulling his jeans over his waist.
“I am Rayne,” she whispered.
“Rayne... I will call on you again," he decided, her face filled with joy and worship. He raised his hand before she could talk. “You may leave now” she nodded her head and started towards the door.
Once he was dressed he marched out of his room and headed for the main room. The tunnels weren’t as they used to be, they had shaped them up nicely after some work. Being below the earth was a comfort to a vampire, as far from the sun as possible. The tunnels were below the city, so it was easy enough to reach the outside world.
Leon passed the rooms of his brothers, aware of the footsteps behind him. In a swift moment he flung backwards and crushed his hands around its throat, throwing the body against the tunnel wall. He blinked once, focussing on the face. Yellow eyes stared back at him in shock, black hair falling around his face.
“Jesus Christ,” the man gasped through his throat, Leon let his hand fall.
“Stop calling me that,” Leon grunted and started walking again, footfalls rushing to catch up with him.
“Why so jumpy? And why are you in such a rush bro?” Leon turned to see his brother, who was rubbing his neck.
“First: don’t sneak up on me Seb, your lucky I’m not armed and second I have no idea, Tate called on me.” Sebastian’s eyes widened for one second then his jaw hardened.
“Tate huh, must be important.” his yellow eyes narrowed before he turned and left. Leon sighed and continued.
He lived in the tunnels with his 3 brothers only. There were only two types of vampires, civilians and warriors. He and his brothers were charged to protect the civilians. There was many warriors once, but now most others had retired and returned to their lives, after the Fairmpyre threat had very well ceased. Only Tate, Luca and Seb had remained by Leon’s side. Leon could and would never retire, he was king, and he had no choice. Plus they had one more job left to do.
Leon entered the main room and stopped to smell the air. His nostrils filled with something he hadn’t smelt in a long time. The familiarity of his own kind, mixed with the delicious mouth watering scent of what could only be human.
Amalya woke from the deepest sleep that she felt she hadn’t had in so long. Her head was dazed and when she opened her eyes the light spilling through the windows hurt her eyes. She raked her hands through her hair and threw herself out of bed. Glancing around her room she saw nothing different, nothing had changed. The television still sat at the end of her bed, with a sense of dread she reached for her cell phone. There were no missed calls, no messages.
She picked her robe off her floor and wrapped it around herself, shivering despite not feeling the cold. Something was wrong and she knew it. Where was Mika? She was overwhelmed now by a sense of fear and sadness. Why wasn’t Mika back? Was she okay? What if she never came back? What if Amalya was abandoned?
“Mika?” she called and got no reply. She darted across the room and laid her ear on the door. It was quiet, dead quiet. She thought perhaps Mika was eating or in her own room, but no sound came.
Amalya frowned and tried the door knob, it was locked. But it was always kept locked, Mika made sure of that. Suddenly the walls around her seemed to move towards her, Amalya staggered backwards, falling onto her bed. She wrapped her arms around her knees and listened intently.
Still no sound, not even a sound from outside, everything seemed dead. She grabbed her cell again and speed dialled the only number she had. It rang and rang, and then Mika’s voice mail picked up, “Lya, I know its you. Because I’m psychic... Not really, actually your the only one I talk to (laugh) I’m probably too busy buying stuff for you, leave a message and I’ll call you back...”
“Mika? Is everything okay? Please call me, I’m worried...” Amalya snapped the phone shut and closed her eyes.
All she could do was wait and wait she did.
Mika woke with pain so intense she gasped. Her head was aching like she had been struck by a truck, her ears were still buzzing. She reluctantly opened her eyes and tried to focus her dizzying sight.
Where was she?
The room around her was dark and cold, the walls were cylindrical and cement. She shivered from both the cold and the sudden dread that threatened to smother her. When she looked to the ground she noticed two things, one there was carpet clearly placed over cement hastily and two, she was tied at her legs. She tried to reach to them with her hands but felt the sharp pinch of whatever had her wrists bound together. She tried to pull against them and felt as they cut into her wrists.
With sharp clarity she suddenly remembered what happened. She was in the city; someone-people- were following her. One was huge, sandy blonde hair and smoked. The other nearly as big, dark and she stabbed him. She remembered the fear, the shock at seeing them. Tate and Luca she recalled. Vampires, the words echoed in her head, making it throb more.
“You wake,” a deep voice said and the figure stepped out of the shadows. He was wearing dark pants and a leather jacket. His hair fell into his eyes and he swept it away before meeting Mika’s wide eyes. Tate.
“I was starting to worry that maybe I hit you to hard,” he said mused, moving closer to Mika.
He drew his hand into his jacket and pulled out his cigarettes. He looked at Mika again through lowered lids and lit one. Exhaling a puff of clove scented smoke, he knelt beside her, she cringed away and he chuckled.
“I have to admit, I haven’t seen one of your kind in so long,” he started in a conversational tone, “You do so blend in easy, it wasn’t until I saw your eyes that I knew what you were. Then of course your smell.” he drew on his cigarette thoughtfully, “You have nothing to say Ghuardian?”
“Where am I?” Mika asked through her teeth, which only seemed to amuse Tate more.
“Well this is my home, nice isn’t it?” he smirked.
“Real nice,” Mika snorted.
Tate chuckled again and sat up, pacing around the room. Mika noticed with clarity the swiftness in his movements, almost graceful and exact. Vampires, she thought. As he paced back and forth, murmuring to himself, he occasionally locked eyes with Mika and each time she was stunned by his icy blue eyes. She looked away, unable to look at him and glanced around her surroundings again. She could vaguely hear the sound of cars and people above her, but it was muffled by space. She realised as she stared at the room and listened above her, she was underground. A tunnel perhaps?
She noted at the far end of the room was a huge throne, lined in black velvet. Beside it were the only source of light in the room, two torches blazing with fire, implanted into the cement walls. She pulled at her restraints again, gritting her teeth through the pain. She could feel the blood running from her wrists and ankles, but she didn’t care, she had to get back to Amalya. The fear she felt for Lya was worse than what she felt now in the face of an enemy.
“I’d stop doing that if I were you. It’s steel, you’ll lose your hands,” Tate said close to her now, she glanced down at her ankles and saw her raw flesh shown around the steel. He was right, she went still.
“Now tell me Ghuardian..., wait what is your name?” he was kneeling beside her again. Mika kept her mouth shut and eyes on the floor. Tate sighed, “I was hoping to do this the easy way, and I really didn’t want to hurt your pretty little face again...”
Tate rose to his feet, towering over Mika; she suppressed a shudder at his mass. She realised he must be a vampire warrior; no normal vamp was this size. After realising that her adrenaline kicked in, he would not stop until he got what he wanted. Warriors had two purposes in life, civilians and Fairmpyres. But Mika was sworn to Amalya and would never betray her, so she met Tate’s eyes with a scowl and a hard set jaw.
“Tough one aren’t you?” he chuckled and reached into his jacket again. But instead of a cigarette he unsheathed a blade that Mika recognised as hers. He tossed it into the air, once, twice and over again, catching it blade end first. He stepped closer to her and smirked, “You can change your mind kid, last chance. I’d hate to use your own blade on you.” he waved the blade in front of her eyes taunting.
“Not a chance vampire,” she hissed and his hand flew towards her face. Snapping her head back, her ears started buzzing and the room spun. She could taste the blood in her mouth; she painfully steadied her head and glared at Tate.
“I warned you,” he said, licking the blood off his knuckles, “Mmm, you taste as good as I thought.” he smiled widely, flashing his fangs. He leant closer to her but before he could do whatever he was going to, the doors to the room flew open.
Mika thought Tate was huge, compared to this man though he was nothing. The man standing in the doorway had to duck before he entered the room; his muscles were protruding through his black shirt. His eyes were the crimson colour of blood and his hair was brown and cropped. His eyes rested on Tate for a second then he was staring incredulously at Mika.
“What the fuck is this?” he roared, still staring at her. Mika tore her eyes away from the giant and saw Tate draw another smoke out of his jacket. He didn’t even regard the man, didn’t seem at all intimidated as Mika felt.
“It’s a Ghuardian,” Tate said matter-of-factly. The man narrowed his eyes at Mika.
“I can see that. But what is it doing here?” he took a few steps into the room; he too walked as gracefully as Tate. Mika could see and feel the power of him; he must have been the one who the throne belonged to.
“I wanted a change of scenery,” Tate said smirking at the man, who then let out a loud growl that made Mika cringe in her chair. “Whoa, easy there, my lord. Here” Tate tossed something at the man.
Mika felt her heart sink when she realised what it was, it was her purse.
Leon frowned as he caught whatever Tate threw at him. He looked down at his huge hands and saw what it was. He flipped it open and saw the usual a purse would hold. Bank card, ID and a little money. He pulled the ID out of the purse and read it aloud.
“Mika Holloway. 24 years old. Fake address, but this appears to be you.” he looked at the Ghuardian through his lowered lids; she was glaring at him through her blue-gray eyes. “Tate still, what the hell is she doing here?” Leon closed the purse and strode towards his brother, who was still glowing with excitement.
“Mika?” Tate said, kneeling beside her. She wouldn’t look at him. “Who’s your charge?” she didn’t reply, only gritted her teeth. Leon frowned but stood over the girl, looking down at her.
“Who’s your charge Ghuardian?” her head snapped up to him and her eyes were wide, taking him all in. “My name is Leon, you can talk to me,” he tried for niceness, she just scowled at him.
He tore what was left of her jacket off her in one quick effortless movement. She gasped.
She was covered in blood; her face was bruised and battered. There was a crack on her head, leaking blood. Her wrists and ankles were bleeding from the restraints. She was big for a young ghuardian, Leon thought, she must be important. He started for her shirt,
“Yes! My name is Mika,” she gasped and he pulled his hands away.
“And your charge?” he asked her again, aware that his other brothers were now entering the room. news got around fast in the tunnels. Mika didn’t speak again, she was hesitating he noticed.
“She’s not speaking?” Luca asked, approaching her. His dark eyes skewering her. She looked up at him and smirked, which made him angrier. He grabbed her shirt and lifted her off the ground.
“Your going to pay for what you did,” he snarled, his fangs unsheathed. She whispered something under her breath.
Luca leaned closer to her face, “What did you say?” she shocked Leon by leaning in closer to Luca.
“Something along the lines of: Fuck you!” she yelled and sank her teeth into his cheek. Luca cried out and threw her across the room; she hit the floor hard sliding into the middle of the room.
“Seb! Tate!” Leon called quickly, as Luca leapt towards Mika. They caught him mid flight and threw him against the wall.
“That’s twice, you bitch!” Luca roared at the girl. Thrashing against the hold Seb and Tate had on him.
“Enough! Get out of here.” Leon waved his hands impatiently at Luca, who shot another glare at Mika before disappearing down the hall. “Tate, help her up,” he ordered.
Tate stalked across the room and picked the chair and the girl up, settling it back upright. He was laughing as he did it, she was dazed but conscious.
“Don’t you dare bite me woman, I bite back,” Tate said flashing his own fangs. Leon rolled his eyes and strode across the room to the Ghuardian.
“Now where were we before you so rudely bit my brother...” Leon put his thumb under her chin and forced her to look at him, looking into her eyes he asked, “Who. Is. Your. Charge?” she just stared into his eyes, pleading.
Leon sighed and caught hold of her shirt; he twisted once and ripped it off. She gasped and fought her restraints. Blood was soaked onto her skin and her white bra. Then there, on her left breast where her heart is, was her charges name: AMALYA.
“Amalya?” Seb finally joined them, looking confused. Which wasn’t good for Mika’s case, not only was Seb a warrior. But he was a scribe also, he knew the history and every family there was. Leon met his brothers yellow eyes and frowned.
“Have you not heard the name?” he asked him.
“Its hard to say without a surname, but no. I don’t think I have,” he stared thoughtfully at Mika, his black hair falling over his face. Tate cleared his throat loudly and Leon turned to look at him.
“Tate this still doesn’t make any sense my brother,” Leon narrowed his eyes at Tate who was still smiling.
“Who’s Amalya?” Tate asked Mika. The girl flinched at the name but met his stare head on. She was a strong ghuardian.
“She’s dead,” Mika said quickly, too quickly.
“You lie. Don’t think me a fool girl, I know the history of your kind,” Leon snapped at her.
“No, she is dead.”
“Her name is still there on your chest!” he pointed a finger sharply at her chest. Losing his temper; he rubbed his knuckles on his temples. He knew that if a Ghuardian’s charge died, the name was burnt off and they were diminished of their ghuardian title.
“I haven’t been marked yet, she died recently!” Mika cried the desperation clear in her voice.
Leon looked at her again and saw the pain in her eyes. Why the hell had Tate brought her here? And tortured her. Yet there he stood still smirking and confident and getting on his nerves. Tate was an angry vampire, sarcastic and cold. He was a good fighter one of the best and he had his reasons. His family were massacred along with everyone else’s, but that had nothing to do with Ghuardians.
“Nice piece of jewellery you have there,” Tate said, catching hold of the locket around the girl’s neck. Then tracing his hands between her breasts, making her fight against her restraints again. The scent of her blood became stronger, making Leon’s throat burn with thirst, he hadn’t fed enough.
“Tate, let her go. We have more important things to do” Leon turned his back on them and began striding out of the main room. He heard a snap of metal and a gasp from the girl. He turned to look over his shoulder; Tate had the girl’s necklace in his hands.
“Could this be the famous Amalya?” Tate asked smirking coldly.
Mika’s tears over flowed her eyes and rolled down her blood soaked cheeks. Leon approached them again slowly, seeing a photo in Tate’s hands. Without a word Tate tossed the locket at Leon. He opened the piece of silver and inside was a folded piece of paper. He unfolded it and stared.
On the paper was a photo of two. The first had short black hair and was tall and lean. Her eyes blue-gray of a ghuardian. She was wearing black leathers, the usual of a ghuardian’s uniform. But it wasn’t her he was staring at. The girl next to Mika was slender and ivory skinned. Wearing a blush pink coloured gown. Her hair was an array of black, brown and red that flowed below her waist. Her skin was marked with intricate all too familiar tattoos. Her eyes, one blue and one green, seemed to bore into his through the photo. Then surrounding the two of them, were white feathered wings that seemed to hug them together. A furious growl worked its way up Leon’s throat.
“Fairmpyre!” he snarled.