Chapter 109 - Ploy
“Did I ever tell you about my treasure?” Belvare unexpectedly interrupted his lovemaking, and for a second they could only stare at him. His eyes glittered with lust and laughter. He had no idea how relieved they felt for yet another reprieve.
“Amaria was the most beautiful woman with eyes black as onyx, hair as dark as ebony, the body of a goddess, the face of an angel and a deep hatred of her position as the queen,” the memory almost softened Belvare’s expression. If he ever felt anything for anyone, it was for this Amaria.
“She never wanted it, and there was this passion in her for the forbidden - a yearning for something more. I seduced her away from Halill, showed her what I was, and taught her all the forbidden pleasures of the flesh, but something inside her rebelled. Something sensed that my intentions ran far deeper than teaching her to my hand,” he grinned, but there was such darkness in his eyes that the fever in them cooled to a simmer. This was the Dark One, the pure evil.
“I gave her a little space, but when I returned from the east, Halill had finally shown her his true colors and turned her. He also turned her against me. Fools. They plotted to destroy me, and but for the fey heart of a woman, they would have succeeded,” his grin had an edge to it at that moment which warned them that this story wasn’t just a story.
“For their sins, I gathered an army and marched against them. I wiped that city clean of every last inhabitant, but I saved Amaria and Halil for last. They died slowly at my hand, and I gained all that great treasure, but it meant nothing to me,” Belvare pulled them closer to his naked flesh as his hands resumed their roaming and his warning could not have been clearer.
“Amaria wasn’t the one, and I knew that from the very beginning, even though she carried the human blood of your family in her veins,” he revealed as he bit at the skin of Alena’s shoulder with just enough force to hurt, but not break the skin.
“I planned from the start to destroy them both, but such an act would not have been enough to bear witness in the annals of history,” Belvare said as he nipped lower, just above her breast, and this time a drop of blood oozed from the skin. He licked it away, but the skin had already healed. They looked at each other and knew that he was telling them that he’d already decided to kill them both when he got what he wanted.
“Only a true tragedy would leave enough trace for you to find,” Belvare grinned when his words made them realize that he had destroyed an entire city to draw their attention. He nipped at Alena’s breast as if he hadn’t just allowed them to concede the true scope of their folly.
He didn’t ruin the city to punish Halil and Amaria, but for them. Just like he slaughtered all those villages to force their hand. Belvare spilled the blood of so many innocents on their behalf, and instead of breaking their spirits, it hardened their resolve.
Belvare would pay for every drop of spilled blood, they decided in a look he could not see as he bit Rowan on the thigh and allowed his teeth to break the skin. Rowan didn’t even flinch as she looked at him with a hatred she had to force into the deepest, darkest recesses of her mind.
Rowan pretended to moan with lust, concentrating on his allure, but this time she found she could mold it to her will. It took a moment for her to understand that she had the same gift as him, that it was part of her ability to glamour.
Rowan allowed it to flow into her veins, and she didn’t expect it to influence him. Neither did he realize what she did, with her blood on his tongue making her attraction more potent.
When he glanced up at her, his eyes were not vampire blue, but blood red. His pupils had become pinpoints of darkness at the center. He didn’t even know that he was intoxicated on both his allure and hers. Rowan felt fear strike at her heart as her control wavered on the knife-edge of two such potent gifts.
This wasn’t something she even knew she could do, and unlike her ability to use glamor, it wasn’t something she’d learned to control. Her mind reached automatically for the brutal image of Helena’s death.
She had to cling to herself, dared not lose restraint of the conflagration she created. It would serve no purpose if Belvare killed them in a moment of passion. She didn’t even admit to the rush of power she experienced when she came to understand that in his arrogance, Belvare didn’t pick up on the fact that Rowan steered his attentions away from Alena as much as she dared.
The image of Marcus grew clearer in her mind. It didn’t matter what she had to do to get Belvare to drop his guard around them. This would end with the three of them. No one else would die for this creature’s unholy pleasure.
It took Alena only a few moments to grasp what Rowan did, and it scared her. She had some allure, she’d used it before, and she could control it, but she’d never used it as Rowan did now. Alena also realized Rowan used her gift to spare her Belvare’s attentions, but she would not allow Rowan to suffer alone.
Belvare pulled Rowan on top of him, and as she straddled him, he pulled his nails down her sides, drawing blood. Alena leaned forward, distracting him with a fierce kiss when Rowan flinched as pain pierced through her defenses.
Rowan felt briefly angry when Alena would not back down, but what did she expect? They were Victor’s children, and just as she would not allow Alena to suffer more than she had to, Alena would not allow her to suffer more than her share.
They were in this together, and they would end it together. Rowan sensed it when Alena used her gifts, and for a brief moment she wondered if Belvare ever got bested at his own game before, but she was more concerned about what would happen if he caught onto their ploy.