Addy tried to sit perfectly still. It wasn’t her in labor but Hadria. She couldn’t contain her excitement for Hadria and Victor. She didn’t know how long she and the pack waited outside of the room. Was it hours? Yeah, it had to be hours. She was sure the sun had set and it was now rising into the morning. A day had passed. Addy and Pierce both handled the fiasco with Danag and returned to the colony. Pierce was about to announce the success of their mission to Victor but they heard from Bryce that Hadria had gone into labor and had been in it since they left.
Pierce dropped everything and rushed to be at his brother’s side. Addy followed along for moral support. She glanced at Pierce. He sat with his legs stretched out in front of him. His arms were folded and his eyes were closed. Addy wondered if he were sleeping. After a few more hours and after Addy was sure another day was going to pass, Dr. Nichols and Dr. Wickman emerged. Dr. Nichols’ eyes landed on Pierce but he turned his gaze to Addy.
“Good thing she’s a wolf,” he said. “It’s over.”
“Can I come in?” Addy asked.
Dr. Nichols nodded. “Carefully and quietly.”
Addy wanted to wake Pierce but she didn’t have to. He stood along with Bryce. They both followed her into the room. Hadria smiled when they entered. The baby was tucked in her arms and swaddled with a white blanket. Addy came closer. She sighed. The baby was beautiful. Victor greeted them with a grunt. Hadria held the baby out for them to see.
“It’s a girl,” she said, excitement in her voice. “Like I knew it would be.”
“Congratulations,” Addy said.
“She’s gorgeous,” Bryce whispered.
Addy thought so too. The girl opened her eyes to reveal gold orbs. She had Hadria’s eyes. A dusting of black hair covered her head.
“I’m glad she doesn’t have heterochromia like me,” Hadria said. “Nor does she have my birthmark.”
“There’s nothing wrong with you,” Victor said. “You’re beautiful with your heterochromia and the birthmark. If our daughter had the same thing, she’d still be beautiful.”
Addy agreed. Hadria was beautiful. She didn’t think the heterochromia or the birthmark took away from her looks at all. The baby was an exact image of her. Addy rubbed her own belly with anticipation. She couldn’t wait to see how her twins would turn out. She wondered if they’d look like her or Pierce. Would they have her hair or eye color? Pierce placed his hands on her shoulders from behind. He gave her shoulders a massage. The gesture felt good.
“What are you going to name her?” she asked.
“Elara,” Hadria rubbed her nose against the baby. “Elara Lucia Halton.”
“Beautiful,” Bryce said.
Victor smiled. “Nice. I like the name.”
Addy watched as he lifted Elara out of Hadria’s arms. He cuddled her to him and smiled. Addy had never seen him smile before. It was welcoming. He didn’t look so intimidating now. He kissed Elara.
“I’ll groom her to be the first female alpha of our colony once she’s old enough.”
“Do you think the colony will listen to her?” Bryce asked, touching Elara’s chin with a finger.”
“They’d better or else.”
The pack began to crowd the room and Addy took it as a sign it was time for her to leave. She heard Pierce say something about contacting Hadria’s former pack and letting them know the good news. Addy was about to take a seat on the bench when Dr. Wickman emerged from the room.
“Addison, I have something for you.”
“What is it?”
The doctor motioned for her to follow along. Dr. Wickman led Addy into a separate part of the wing from where Hadria was. She opened the door to one of the rooms and stepped back for Addy to enter first. Addy stepped into the room. She was blinded by the bright lights. Addy saw a medicine bottle on the table containing blood red pills.
“Have a seat, please,” Dr. Wickman said.
“What’s going on?” Addy asked, taking a seat on the table. “Is there something wrong?”
Dr. Wickman grabbed the bottle of pills. “This is something a vampire came up with. Did Nalen and the others mention something to you about this when you were with them?”
Addy gazed at the bottle. “They never said anything to me. Why?”
“This pill is called DAWN,” Dr. Wickman opened the bottle. She poured two of the pills into her palm. “This pill is a drug that vampires use to walk in the sun and if they take it for a few weeks, they won’t need to take it again. They’ll be able to walk in the sun permanently.”
“That’s impossible.” Addy held out a hand for the pills. She picked up one and studied it.
“Not if you’re a genius it’s not.” Dr. Wickman grabbed a file from one of the drawers. She opened it and pulled out a photograph. She held it up for Addy to see. Addy frowned at the photo of a handsome blond man with gray eyes. He was smirking on the photo. Addy didn’t know what it was but something about him made her feel uneasy.
“Vasile Mathias is one of the most brilliant minds in Science,” Dr. Wickman said. “His late father, Sirius was just as brilliant. Vasile is responsible for the creation of this drug.”
“Why would he create something like this?’ Addy asked.
“As I said, he’s a vampire like you. He’s the king of the vampire race and the ruler of Black River. Black River is a town not too far from here.”
“Okay,” Addy said. “Why are you telling me about him?”
“Because, there’s a chance you might encounter him in the future,” Dr. Wickman said. “You can’t be a vampire without knowing who he is.”
Addy wasn’t interested in hearing about this so-called king. All she cared about was her life with Pierce. She was about to say as much but something told her she should listen until the end.
“Is he worse than Danag?” she asked.
“Far worse. He’s the most evil being you could ever meet. He’s a danger to everyone around him and to those who oppose him.”
“What about Nalen?’ Addy asked. “I thought Nalen was Danag’s master or something. Wouldn’t that make him Danag’s king?”
Dr. Wickman shook her head. “Nalen was Danag’s master because he turned him. All vampires are ruled by Vasile no matter where they are. I just wanted to warn you. If you ever see him, run as far away from him as you can.”
“I don’t think I have to worry about that.” Addy popped the pills into her mouth as Dr. Wickman gave her a glass of water. “Pierce has no business in Black River.”
“I hope you’re right,” Dr. Wickman said. “I hope you’re right. On another note, don’t worry about if these pills will harm your babies. They’re safe to take.”
Addy heard a knock on the door. Dr. Wickman smiled at Pierce when he came through. Addy didn’t want to worry about other things but Dr. Wickman’s words gnawed at her. When they got over one hump it looked like they’d have to get over another. Bile rose up in her throat at the thought of meeting a vampire that was so evil, he made Danag look like an angel. Addy’s heart thudded and she shivered.
“What’s wrong, sweetheart? Are you cold?”
Addy nodded. Pierce wrapped his arms around her. Addy watched Dr. Wickman put the file away on Vasile. She didn’t even want to be anywhere near that file nor the town of Black River.