Vol 2. Chapter 7
I was back in the cold dungeon. I still wasn’t fed. I still had no water. I could barely move. The night had passed and another day. Lixar was sitting on the other side of the cell bars, drinking water and eating in front of me. His own demonic qualities were showing through. He was enjoying putting on a sadistic performance while I was too weak to beg for food.
“…I’ll never fuck you again…” I whisper, while pressing my palms to my stomach, “Your cousin will, though, I’m sure.”
I turn my head and I see Lixar chewing on some kind of roasted bone from some bad demon he’s probably fucked and roasted afterwards. I hate hearing the crunch of bone, and his hazel eyes are full of mischief.
“I told you, darling, I came to gloat. 3 years. Chyronex. Not even a word,” Lixar murmurs, “Do you want some water? Good. Because you’re not getting any. King’s orders.”
“Go to hell…”
“I’m already welcome there,” Lixar jokes, but I watch him silently now. I have no more words to say and Lixar suddenly loses his cruel gaze when he sees my completely sunken look. Still unbelievably handsome, Lix could have any woman in the realm, yet he was jealous I didn’t speak to him for 3 years, “Chyronex,” he throws away his bone, “…you know… even though it was hard… even though I understand your motive… if you had let Andoll stay dead – as all our times will come to pass anyway… none of this would have happened.”
“If Zarcar didn’t spell me silent that evening before the ambush, I could have saved her,” I whisper it at the ceiling.
“Inconsequential. She died. As we all will die. You accepted the deal with the devil. Draconesses don’t support Lucifer, they fight against everything he is.”
“He would have tortured Andoll for eternity because she died in his Hellfire. I did what a Draconess is supposed to do. I protected my Venatores.”
“Leave us, Commander,” What in Hellfire? I turn my head to see Varkinya step in front of Lix, hissing at him when he jumps to his feet and smacks a kiss to her cheek.
Oh, god, he fucked her too some time in the past, no doubt. All the women he fucked seemed to hate him.
Varkinya sets his boots on fire and Lixar dances away, laughing as he escapes.
I smirk slightly and I turn my head to see Varkinya turn and grab the bars to my cell. She presses her cheeks against the bars, looking in at me.
“How do you like Torrent’s discipline?” Varkinya doesn’t seem angry, she seems proud, “Has he broken your will yet?”
“…you came to gloat too?” I ask, avoiding answering her directly.
“No. What’s your secret?” Varkinya questions lightly, “Torrent tells me you hide many secrets and he wishes to know them, as do I. You can tell me and I won’t tell him. Draconess to Draconess.”
“You hate me.”
“I despise reckless younglings, but you have a reason to your mischief… I want to know… I saw the look in your eyes…” Varkinya waits as I just stare at the ceiling. I don’t trust her completely, although part of me wants to tell her, “…how about I tell you my new secret…” that smug tone is frustrating to me.
“Hmmm?” I ask, sighing, “I don’t think I wish to know your secret.”
“I’ll tell you anyway, Viperae. Zarcar had welcome accommodation in my house last evening. I learnt a few things about him when we rolled around in the bed sheets together –” bitch.
From somewhere deep inside, my fire ignites. I jump off my stone bench. Snarling, I try my best to lunge for her, to grab her throat through the bars. I miss by a bloody inch.
Varkinya stands back, her tone dropping, “If you care so much for him, why did you leave him?”
“If you ever dare to touch him again then I’ll rip your throat out,” I growl deeply.
“…Zarcar seems quite detached from you. He found another… Draconess… to replace you. Not me. Another one. Young.”
“No,” my voice breaks, shocked by her sudden news, “No, you lie to me.”
“I do not. His kind need virgins to maintain power,” Varkinya doesn’t rub it in, she simply seems to tell me truth, “Dayarexna. Her name.”
Whoever she is –
I turn from the bars and I spin to the stone wall, punching it with my fists. I don’t even feel them bleed. But I eventually drop to my knees and lay my head against the wall as my blood stains my hands crimson. As I sob distressed dry tears, Varkinya kneels beside me on the other side of the cell and keeps talking, “…they are not mates… Dayarexna is simply his tool… you understand…?”
“I’ll kill her,” I whisper into the wall.
“Do not fight your own kind, she did nothing wrong,” Varkinya scolds me, “The way Zarcar fucked me, I’d say he has more than some bad demons lurking underneath.”
“Why are you telling me this, I don’t want to hear this – please, stop.”
“You’re a special Draconess, Chyronex. There is a common breed of us and then there is your breed. No name for it. But you’re destined for a great rule. Maybe even as an Empress.”
I turn to glare at Varkinya. But all I see is her. I don’t see the devil’s likeness in her. These were her words alone.
“That look, there,” she hisses, “Why are you scared? Have you been talking to… the devil…?” I say nothing, “Yes? Well,” Varkinya smirks, “He is just as in love with Draconesses as any other Mystifyer. You’ll find an unlikely ally in he who burns.”
“We kill his armies –”
“Self gain, the devil is just trying to impress us,” Varkinya laughs, “Don’t worry. We’re eternal, we can’t die if we stay alive… we live forever free. So, keep alive. Keep out of his hands. Believe me, Chyronex. You’ll be okay. You have the power you need to stay free of any influence… you are special. Truly. And worthy. Even if you’re a bit reckless.”
“…thank you,” I whisper, feeling as if she talks to me like she’s a mother-figure. I press my cheek into the stone, “For your advice.”
“You have a friend who’s waiting to see you. And other… friends… are you ready to leave your cell?” Varkinya asks me, a bit cheeky.
“King’s orders, I can’t leave.”
“But I’m a Queen,” Varkinya laughs, “I free you. You’re only being punished because of his love for me. I forgive you now, little Viperae.”
“Who is waiting above?”
“You shall see. Take this,” Varkinya reaches into her robe’s deep pockets and passes me a thick roll of ribbon. My eyes light up and I snatch it to me through the bars. Silver ribbons. My favourite colour, “Ribbons are the best, aren’t they? Bind yourself and I’ll escort you up.”
“Any more advice… elder?” I ask, snickering as I start winding the ribbons around my feet, each leg, each arm, my breasts, everywhere. I know my own pattern. I’m still covered in dirt and blood but I think it adds to my look of bad-ass anyway, so I don’t mind.
“…I organised the dinner… everyone is there waiting for you. It’s a good way to erase tension. Trust me. Food helps people bond.”
“I wish it were that easy,” I reach out a hand when Varinkya passes me a comb. I try to get the knots out but I can’t. She opens the cell door and comes in behind me, taking it, she hacks into my hair for me. Quickly, she fixes the majority of the knots.
“Would you like flowers for your hair?” Varkinya asks.
“I would like pins to poke some eyes out,” I growl it and she just laughs.
Still, Varkinya doesn’t say what I think she will.
Is that other girl there... Dayarexna. I can’t even ask the question aloud. I think I might just kill her if she is. However, I may as well do it style; in ribbons and a unlikely ally at my side.
“Let’s go, Chyronex,” Varkinya winds an arm around me to help me walk out. I’ve bandaged my palms and the silver is stained with blood from my knuckles, but at least it works as a comforting cover, “Try to enjoy the feast, will you? Keep… calm?”
I nod, but I don’t speak any words. Hopefully this reunion didn’t end in fire and blood.