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Chapter LXIV

The forsaken entity known as reality captures me within its clutches, brutally pulling me from the throes of slumber and to the tresses of my mind; where I awake to the sound of Cassius and Adeliaโ€™s cries. Iโ€™m momentarily dazed, the essence of sleep lingering on the lids of my eyes as I stare up at the ceiling with blurred vision โ€” darkness cloaking the room.

Quickly, my vision clears as I roll from my side to sit up, my hair slipping over my shoulder like silk, the distinct continuing cries of my children draw my attention to their crib, sleep long forgotten.

Pulling back the duvet that felt like puff clouds between my fingers, I slip out the bed and was instantly met with a small chill that lingered in the atmosphere, tickling at my bare skin as I moved soundlessly toward the crib where the tiny bundles lied. The moonโ€™s glow emitted a sort of halo effect as I placed my hands along the cribโ€™s edge. Cassiusโ€™ cheeks were tainted red, the pressure of his cries swelling his face lightly with blood, his sister whimpering slightly by his side; leftover tears create a light sheen off wetness on her cheek.

Knowing what they craved, I settled for Adelia, scoping his weight into my arms swiftly. Briefly, I mulled over his features, his lashes clumped together with tears as he blinked innocently at me; my heart soaring.

โ€œHi, baby,โ€ I whisper, lifting the cotton fabric of the two-piece nightgown, no undergarment holding my breasts hostage.

Adjusting her accordingly, Adelia latches onto my nipple hungrily, sucking it as if she had been starved: her wide eyes staring without focus as she lets herself be submerged in the waves of flavor. As she drinks himself full, I sweep locks of her from sticking to her brows to behind her hair before I turn my gaze to Cassius as he waits his turn โ€” to keep him from crying, I preoccupy him with running my fingertips up and down his stomach as he lies on his back, small gurgles of laughter bursting from him as the air is filled with his contagious energy.

In the end, I exhaust him from his fest of giggles and let my mind wander, Adelia still attached to my breast.

The events before leading up into the now come to the foremind, swirling, and inhabiting my thought process, the images rising an alliance with my feelings. I properly process the information, an uneasy feeling growing within my stomach, part of me still couldnโ€™t fathom the history behind this world and all that was kept secret about the originality of humans.

Though I no longer functioned like a human being, I was still a bit uneased and shellshocked about the newfound knowledge and stuck in the void of accepting it.

Adeliaโ€™s audible retraction from my nipple brings me from the woven strings of my thoughts that knotted with each passing second, looking down at her, I find her a bit milk-drunk; her lips plumped red from his sucking and eyes lowering with the weight of sleep upon them. The corner of my lips tugs into a smile, wiping away drops of breast milk, and swing her over my shoulder, patting his back. She effortlessly burps, one loud and the other a wet sound, soon after I lay him back into the crib.

Cassiusโ€™s keen eyes follow my movements, my hand lulling his sibling to sleep, eager, and ready to eat. With gentle hands, I raise him into my arms, his face always catching me off guard at how much he resembled Delano: those blue as striking and intense as his fatherโ€™s.

โ€ฒOur baby. . .โ€ฒ

I let the thought drift into my mind, the following sensation of my heart blossoming with a planted bud of emotion that contained the growth of unspoken words. Cassiusโ€™s little fangs puncture my nipple as greedily drinks both blood and milk, pulling me further into the duties of motherhood.

The four, largely spaced, walls of the suite began to play with my mind and sanity. And though with the world still encased in darkness, I could faintly feel the presence of others moving among the halls of the castle as the kingdom woke with life and activities of starting a new age. Recalling my moments with Delano, the words of his whereabouts flicker in my mind as my gaze subconsciously slides to look at the twins โ€” both aware of one another, their hands fumble with each other as gurgle noises of their own language spew from their lips.

The pressing thought of staying within this room was becoming more unpleasant; with a mission at hand, I walk across the length of the room, towards the dresser and settle with slipping a loose fabricated dress over my head, the deep moss color oddly contrasted beautifully with my skin. I grab the strings that hung loosely on the sides and tied them into a bow around my waist then moved on to do the same to the neckline of the dress: tying it around my neck.

Satisfied, I investigated the mirror that was conjoined with the dresser, watching my reflection as it runs its hands through its hair, twisting a few natural curls. My eyes only met with mirrors every-so-often that I was still perplexed by the definition in my features, how the shift in my genres, and being as a wholeโ€” completely changing me. The sudden knocking on wood resonated loudly throughout the room, shattering the existing silence that once cloaked the room and pulling me from my self-admiration.

I turn my attention toward the door, calling out strongly. โ€œWho is it?โ€

My ears shifted, adjusting to the white noise before picking up the noise of shuffling from the other side of the door.

โ€œItโ€™s Eileesha, Ms. Monroe,โ€ her voice shoots through the door, formally. โ€œand I have with me a nanny that Prince Vaughan issued for the twins.โ€

โ€˜Nanny?โ€™ I thought, offended.

I shake my head, ridding myself of the feeling. โ€œCome in,โ€ I say.

The door probes open after a twist of the knob and in walks in Eileeshaโ€™s slender frame, following a female vampire on her heels. My spine straightens as their presence floods the room, warm and welcoming: I move away from the dresser and come to stand in the center of the room, slightly, to meet them halfway. My gaze studies Eileesha first, her frame straight as she addresses me with her hands behind her back, then sliding to the โ€˜nannyโ€™ beside herโ€” Iโ€™m immediately struck with familiarity as her aura seeps from her pores; soft and barely in existence, the same nervousness and twinge of fear still surround her.

I relax a bit, then examining the straw basket in her hands, stuffed with a blanket.

โ€œI donโ€™t need a nanny,โ€ I say, catching the slight slouch in her shoulders. โ€œIโ€™m more than capable of taking care of them myself.โ€

โ€œHe thought you may have needed assistance.โ€

I pursue my lips, pausing, returning my gaze back to the tiny female once again, her dark tresses covering her face as she bowed. I mulled over the situation one last time before sighing, my agreement loud and clear.

โ€œFine. You both came at the right time, anyway,โ€ I tell them shortly.

I shift my focus away and head toward the shelves of shoes, rows stacked above one another, shoe littering the surface. Picking out a pair of clear, low heeled, slides, I slip them onto my feet and turn back to Eileeshaโ€™s and the servantโ€™s waiting forms.

โ€œI was already thinking about taking the twins somewhere for some fresh airโ€”โ€ a welcoming grin graces my faceโ€” โ€œDo you know where a good spot, with the view of the city below, is located?โ€

โ€œI do,โ€ the servant speaks, her voice high and willing, her face no longer shielded by the locks of her hair as she looks up at me with eager light eyes.

Once she realizes that we made eye contact, she averts hers, clearing her throat and gripping the basket in her hands more tightly. โ€œI mean, yes, I do happen to know where one is, madam.โ€

I cringe at the title given but still let the smile spread a little further across my mouth, her character briefly revealed to me.

โ€œGood, shall we, then?โ€

With her nod of consent, I turn and walk towards the bed where the twins lied, and effortlessly lift them both into the crook of my arms, and set my path to the door. The servant read into my movements and made her way past both Eileesha and me, opening the door for me.

โ€œThank you, uh. . .โ€ I trail off, searching my brain for the mention of her name. โ€œWhatโ€™s your name, again?โ€

Her face splits with the evident emotion of surprise, almost as if the question was the first time it passed through her ears. With a gentle grin, her eyes warm, her lips part around the name of, โ€œAudrey.โ€

โ€œAudrey,โ€ I confirm, nodding my head.

Walking over the threshold, Eileesha closely behind, I wait long enough for Audrey to close the door and take her place in front to lead us to the spot she referred about. The halls were as tall and long as I remembered, slowly finding myself venturing to the human memories of my first sight, the walls were still stained dark brown, the fancy embroidery that coated the panels were accompanied by deep red drapes that hung heavy from the floor-to-ceiling windows.

The hall was decorated with tables of roses and paintings, small statues placed every so often between them; all evenly spaced out. It wasnโ€™t until we curved around another corner that Eileesha was still shadowing me as I cast a look over my shoulder at her.

โ€œDelano assigned me to watch over you,โ€ she states, neutrally while capturing the question within my eyes.

My brows only furrow in confusion at her statement, moving my face away from Cassiusโ€™s wandering fingers up my nose. Putting the overwhelming thoughts on the back burner, I face ahead to the growing double door beside the stairs that lead upstairs, the tall red spruce wooden stood as tall as a building, leading outside to the front of the castle.

โ€œJust beyond these doors,โ€ Audrey announces, picking up her pace to arrive at the doors first.

Upon arriving at the said entrance, there were two hallways parallel to each other just beneath the stairs, leading into different parts of the castle, I could hear the movements of other inhibitors of the castle. Audrey speaks to one of the guards, both male vampires, dressed in all black attire similar to what Eileesha They seem to go back and forth for a short moment before one of them cut their eyes toward me, then to my children, before widening; the other guard elbows him and backs away to grip one side of the doorโ€™s hand and pull it inward.

The structure creaks, no doubt heavy in weight as the guard makes it seem effortless, pulling lightly on the handle. Iโ€™m greeted with the sight of a paved path with grey stones, stretching wide and in three different paths, the sky irradiating the moonโ€™s reflection on the faces of rocks.

As Audrey leads us farther out, her steps light and quick, I couldnโ€™t help the widening of my eyes as a bright glow from below the mountain illuminates, catching a small glimpse of what lied ahead between gaps of trees.

Audrey continues on, directing us a little bit down the paved path that leads to the right before walking into the grass off to the side; where she pulled the blanket from her basket and flapped it into the air, laying it gently on the ground.

โ€œHere it is,โ€ turning with her arm extended as she gestured down below, โ€œa view of the city.โ€

I pad onto the grass, following to where she pointed, instantly caught in amazement at what I saw. A city, a city of supernaturals, with buildings towering over smaller buildings, signs of advertisement, and black paved roads heading in different directionsโ€” expanding as far as the eye can seeโ€” the modern look of it all throwing me off guard.

The glow that stretched to the sky came from the lights in the buildings and the vehicles that littered the two-lane roads, created from their own establishment and uniqueness that differed from the world I knew before.

This was an ecosystem of beings, of different species and beliefs, co-existing like regular humans, finally brought me to the realization of how all this was real and true at the functioning of the world.

A world that I was now apart of.

a/n; if long chapters both you, please let me know.

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