Chapter 106 - Surgery
Belvare cut the flap of skin away from Rowan’s flesh like a surgeon, leaving a neat, skinless square only to settle his mouth over the wound for the longest moment. When he pulled back, the wound had healed. Alena had never seen anything like it.
“My teeth mark even your kind. I can’t afford to have my prize trophies marred,” Belvare mocked as he wiped his mouth on a white towel, uncaring that he left it smeared with blood.
Rowan reached for the towel to cover her nudity, and he snatched it effortlessly from her hands with a look in his eyes that seemed to sear her skin. She prevented herself from flinching away from him with an effort of will.
“Don’t be modest. You’ll both be mine soon enough,” Belvare staked his claim on them as he smiled as his hand idly traced the line of her, as yet, flat stomach. It was what they wanted, but it was the last thing on earth they desired. His touch unsettled her. It repulsed her on so many levels, and yet it also drew her. He was a master, an ancient, and powerful. The sway of his will over her was almost mesmerizing.
“Soon enough,” Belvare murmured again before leaving abruptly. His moods were hard to gauge, dangerously quicksilver. She allowed a sigh of relief to escape her.
“Shit,” Rowan whispered again, and this time her body shook with reaction. This would take more out of them both than they maybe had to give. What would they lose of themselves if they allowed him to conquer them, and what other way was there to get his guard completely down?
“I’ve seen nothing like that before,” Alena admitted almost in a whisper as she touched the unmarred skin on Rowan’s neck. It was soft like the skin of a newborn. She’d never even heard of such healing.
“I was so afraid he’d know about this,” Rowan said as she touched Alena’s belly and Alena nodded. She’d feared the same thing. Would he rip their babies from them to make way for his own? Would he allow their children to form and turn them? Would that be possible? Either way, they would lose their children to him.
“It’s odd, our...” Alena caught herself, uncertain if it was too soon to call him their father.
“Victor would have known?” Rowan asked, and with a glance at the door, Alena nodded.
“I knew, you knew, and if it’s in the line, why doesn’t he sense it?” Rowan whispered, glancing at the door again. Afraid he’d come back and hear what he should not. His ability to appear inside a closed room still baffled them.
“Perhaps someone is somehow protecting us?” Alena whispered. “Or perhaps he knows,” the door opened, and they both jumped. Robert often sneaked up on them, but he never got as close as Belvare, and always came from somewhere. He didn’t just pop out of thin air.
“You’re cold. Why haven’t you at least put on the robes while I fetched your clothes?” Robert scolded with a frown, and for a second they thought he was kidding, but something had changed in him. He went from condescending, cruel, and callous, to seeming to care for them in some fashion. They didn’t trust the change.
“Your master was here,” Alena supplied cryptically.
“Our master,” Robert corrected. “I have to go find the master something else to play with, so keep out of his way for the next few days,” he ordered as he left them alone to dress and closed the door. There was something definitely odd about Robert these last few days.
They took the advice he offered and studiously avoided Belvare. He seemed preoccupied, and it wasn’t a hard thing to accomplish, contrary to their expectations.
Robert returned with a newborn vampire within days that he took off some traveler, and Belvare purposefully corrupted her until there was little or none of the original humanity left in her. Bored with his new conquest after only a couple of weeks, he returned his attention to them in more and more unpleasant ways. As if to test the resolve that had driven them to eliminate Marianna, he poked and prodded at their sense of morality at every opportunity, forcing them to let go of all they held dear to convince him to trust them.
He treated them less like inferiors than he did even Robert, but he endured no disobedience. Slowly but surely he let them closer to him and hope formed again where despair settled in their hearts.
Perhaps they would find a way past his defenses, before the horrors, he made them witness and perpetrate, became too great for them to bear and before their state of health became more evident.