Royal Pain

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Chapter 2

Deva began to stir as she tried to pull out of her restless sleep. She forced her eyes open, even though it hurt to do so. She took in the sight of the strange bed covers and tried to remember how she got there. Nothing came to mind. She had no idea how she got into a foreign bed.

She turned her head to the side and saw a man staring at her in amusement. She didn’t flinch back or show any fear. She just stared back at the familiar features. The dark blue-grey eyes were now searching into hers as if trying to intimidate. His face looked like the same strong jaw line, sharp nose, luscious lips, but there was something different in the way he was looking at her. As if it were his first time seeing her.

He stood up from the chair across the room and went to sit on the side of her bed. The bed dipped as his face came into better view. He hovered above her, and with him up close, she could tell he was not the same man from the night before.
He didn’t say anything, only stared at her face like he was trying to memorize it.

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(What the mystery man looks likes)

“I’m dreaming, right? This has to be a dream.” Otherwise she would be freaking out.

“I’m flattered you think so.”

Who was this cocky son of-? Maybe it was Marcus. Why was she getting a feeling it wasn’t?

“Don’t be. I dream of dogs too.” It was her nature to deflate men’s egos.

His laugh sent chills down her spine. Was she dreaming? She gripped the covers. It was the realest dream she had ever had.

“You’re not Marcus,” she examined the man in front of her thoroughly, “you look similar but your eyes are too close and your smile is more cricked.”

“You’re lying.”

She raised her brow in a challenge. Who was this guy? Of course she was making it up. This guy looked exactly like Marcus she was going by a gut feeling.

The Marcus look-a-like smirked, and his eyes caressed her with fascination. “He was right.”

“What?”

“I’m Darius, Marcus’ brother.”

Deva tried pushing herself up but was struck with dizziness. It was a familiar sensation she wasn’t proud of. “Was I drugged?”

His silence was an answer. “It will help you cope with this new transition.”

“What the hell are you talking about? Where am I?” Maybe the drug was wearing off because she was starting to hyperventilate.

She was kidnapped.

“Deva calm down. We mean you no harm. We won’t hurt you.” The brush of his old British accent distracted her, but only for a second.

“What the hell do you want from me?”

His eyes were like a trigger, a trigger that sent her mind to lala land. She felt like she was hit with another dose of drugs. Her hands stopped shaking and instead of chaos her mind was clear.

“Don’t be scared. We won’t hurt you.” He pressed into her conscious. Probably to trick her into making him feel like a friend. “I have to go but I want you to get washed up. Amy will come by in a few minutes to escort you to another room. There is where I will answer all your questions.”

She controlled her breathing as he got up to leave.

“You also have a roommate who is currently in the washroom.”

Roommate? She threw the covers off so she could stand. What was this, a sorority? Darius was gone by the time the bathroom door flew open. A tall brunette girl with bouncy curls came out looking just as confused.

“Hey,” the girl said awkwardly as she approached Deva, “I’m Lacey.”

“Deva.”

Lacey gave her a small smile, and then turned to stare around the extravagant room. Deva did the same since she hadn’t already. The room was plenty big for two people with two full beds on either side. The walls were covered in elegant red and gold Victorian wallpaper that gave the room a feel of old glamour. The bedpost, night stands, and tables were all a dark brown wood that went well with the feel of the decor. It looked like a room out of a palace.

“So you were kidnapped too?” Lacey trailed on the delicate subject.

“Yeah but my question is who kidnapped us?” Deva picked up a solid gold hand mirror off the vanity. “The prince of England?”

“This place is ridiculous. That bathroom is twice the size of my room back home.”

“Do you think this is a dream?” Deva wasn’t knocking out that theory until it was proven otherwise.

Lacey shrugged. “Maybe. It’s not the worst dream to have. I just remember meeting a gorgeous guy one second then the next waking up in this palace.”

“I’m not buying it. What if it’s all a catch like we’re actually going to be sold into sex slavery? Like some high class shit. Oh God.” Now her mind was spinning with the horrible, endless possibilities.

“If that’s the case we’ll stick together and find a way out.” Lacey seemed more sober than Deva was.

“I need a drink.”

Deva went to the bathroom and splashed some water onto her face. None of this made sense. Why was she there? Why was Lacey? There were too many questions floating in her head. Deva pushed them aside and noticed a new toothbrush on the sink. She rolled her eyes and started to use it.

When she stepped out and there was another girl in the room. She was in her mid-twenties wearing a tight floor length black dress. She had pretty short blonde hair that shined to a platinum shade.

“Are you ready?” she asked.

Deva nodded. She assumed the girl was Amy from what Darius had told her. Amy led them into the hall which matched the interior of their room.

The whole place was beautifully romantic with the Victorian appeal to it.
As they entered the study, Deva was shocked to come face to face with seven other girls in the same room. Her sex slavery theory didn’t seem so farfetched anymore.

Blondes, brunettes, and even a redhead were scattered about the huge room. Deva’s heart screamed at the sight of her best friend’s face.

“Julia!” she cried.

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(Julia)

Her dear friend turned around unraveling hopeful suspicion. “Oh Dev I can’t believe you’re here too,” she said pulling Deva into a hug.

They pulled apart and examined each other but of course neither one of them was physically harmed.

“Do you know what’s going on?′

Deva shook her head. “Whatever it is, we’re going to get out of here.” She promised confidently.
Then, pulling the ladies out of their conversation with a clearing of the throat, all eyes turned to the noise. There stood three beautiful, gorgeous men that looked identical in every way.

Their dark brown hair slightly curled at the ends, their piercing blue-grey eyes scanning through the women, their pale skin accenting their flawless features. They gave no indication of danger but more of interest and amusement.

The one in the middle stepped forward, which Deva predicted as Darius. The girls were enthralled at the spectacle of hot men. It wasn’t their fault. It was like being under a spell.

“Ladies,” he started off in a sultry voice that could calm any storm. “We know that all of you may be confused right now, but we’re here to clear a few things.”

“You all are here for a very important reason. You were specifically chosen by each one of us because we saw something in you.”

He took a dramatic pause to scan the room of helpless women. Deva sat on the wooden table behind her. She figured his answer was going to make her feel sick.

“My brothers and I as you can tell are identical, but what you don’t know is that we’re not human. We are vampires, and you are now in the vampire world.”

Deva along with three other girls burst into a fit of laughter. He had to be joking. Maybe they were on some kind of stupid reality show.

“So you guys are gorgeous and mentally insane,” one of the girls said from the front.

All three of the brothers were smirking. “Do you want me to prove it?”

Before she could answer him, he was standing beside her with her neck in his hand. He was hoisting her up in the air, using no effort at all. The sounds of gasps were coming from every girl. Darius put the struggling blonde girl back on her feet.

She threw her hands up protectively around her neck, but Darius didn’t let go. He pulled her hands away forcing them down. She whined, but he only gave her a devilish smile. He leaned towards her neck and bared his sharp teeth. The blonde felt his fangs scratching at her skin.

“Do you need any more proof?”

“N-no,” She shrieked.

He took a step back. She collapsed on the ground but no one made a move to help her. Everyone was too stunned to move.

“I am Darius. This is Marcus,” he pointed to his left, then to his right, “and Lucian. We are the three princes of the vampire world in this kingdom. You are no longer in your world but ours. The reason you are here is because we are looking for our future queen. One of you lucky ladies will be the next ruler of our kingdom and will have one of us by your side.”

“Wait, we’re not on earth anymore?”

“Think of it as an alternate earth. There are portals that link us to your home. You are in a supernatural world.”

Deva couldn’t believe what she was hearing. It was worse than she feared. “Why a human? Did you run out of vampiresses?” Deva mocked.

She saw Marcus chuckle. “They’re not as sweet,” Marcus replied playing Deva with his eyes.
“Not all humans are sweet Marcus. Some of us are poisonous. So be careful.”

It was definitely a threat. She was not falling for their perfect, simple explanation. They were hiding some gruesome stuff about their unnatural world. If it were even true because she still couldn’t believe it.

“This is a competition?” Another girl asked.

“Yes. The more time we spend with you will hopefully reveal which one is capable of ruling our kingdom. It is our tradition to find a human rather than an existing vampire.”

“Well aren’t we lucky,” Deva said rolling her eyes.

“You should be honored.”

Deva raised her brow to the voice that spoke because it belonged to the brother she hadn’t met.

Lucian was stiff with his posture and his jaw was so tight she thought he might shatter his teeth to bits.

“So honored dear prince, and privileged,” her sarcasm was driven by anger. “But what if I don’t want to play your game?”
“You don’t have a choice.”

“Your experience here will not be like any other,” Marcus she concluded was the brother with the most compassion. “You will be staying in a palace, have food catered, and go on a few dates with us. It’s not like you’ll be tortured. I promise after a few days you won’t want to go back home.”

He was reeling in the up side to the dark contract. It wasn’t as shabby but could they be trusted?

“At the end if you wish to go back than the choice is yours.”

“Just like that? Wouldn’t you try and stop us since we know your secret?” Lacey asked an important practical question.

“Who would believe you? We would disappear. You wouldn’t know where to find us. People would think you’re a lunatic.”

Most of the girls were far too calm but it might have been due to the drugs.

“Now ladies, I believe that some of you are hungry. So, if you will follow us we shall enter the dining room where we will be happy to answer more of your questions.”

The three princes stepped to their right and practically walked in sync as they exited the room.

The girls slowly began to follow the princes down the elegant grand hall. The dark wood of the walls made the feel of the narrow hall seem that much gloomier. They entered a massive eating den that had a table set for 20 people. It was decorated with food that smelled divine.
Deva and Julia waited patiently to be seated last. They were in rush to dine with their kidnappers.

Julia softly whispered to Deva but just that quickly one of the vampire princes stopped her with his toxic eyes.

“What did you say?” His aggressive approach frightened them both.
Julia swallowed hard and knew she’d regret what was going to come out of her mouth.

“Nothing.”

His eyes grew impatient and irritated. “There is a punishment for lying.”

“Is there a punishment for abduction?” Deva couldn’t stop her tongue even if she wanted to.

Lucian took a very intimidating step towards her, towering with authority. “Not for Royals.”

“All you have is birthright. You probably couldn’t survive without it.”

His jaw tightened more than usual. “I suggest you show some respect before I teach you some.”

“Respect is earned. Even dogs know that.” Deva tried walking to the table but the prince grabbed her arm. His stern grip caused her to wince in pain.

He was angry; that much could be seen through his heated gaze and pulsating veins. “I think a quick lesson is in order.”

“What’s the point? I’d never use it.”

Before she could even grasp it, Lucian’s hand flew across her face. The hard stroke made her fall to her knees, and the sting on her cheek was throbbing.

“Well, we can cross prince charming off your resume. And so much for no harm will come to us.”

“You will learn how to speak to royalty soon enough,” Lucian replied. Yet even with the stern look on his face it was as if he regretted the action of hitting a woman.

“Will you beat it in me?”

Deva watched as his eyes softened. Somewhere deep within them she saw pity.

“It’s time to eat.” Darius chimed in pulling them both back into the presence of the crowded room.

Deva sat next to Julia at the very end and the farthest distance from the princes. She wiped her mouth and groaned when she touched the cut on her lip. She licked her lips and tasted blood. Great, just what she needed.

Wine was served continuously. There was never an empty glass. Deva had a grueling suspicion it was a method to unwind and ease the girls. She took advantage of the free relaxation but it wasn’t enough to drown out the nightmare.

The princes began to ask the girls random questions and then also explain a few rules.

“You are free to go about the castle, even the gardens. There are vampire guards stationed everywhere. There is no point in trying to escape. So, try and stay out of trouble. We promise no harm will come to you if you follow these simple rules.”

Darius flashed the girls a brilliant and irresistible smile.

“We will be spending time with each one of you to get to know you all personally. We promise to make this adventurous stay worth your while,” Marcus said with a seductive smile playing on his lips.

The girls had no hope in resisting the three devilishly handsome charming princes especially under the spell of intoxication. They were defenseless and more vulnerable to any seductive and entrancing thing the princes offered them. Trust and comfort were sure to follow.

The girls were cleverly led into the arms of their captivators. Deva couldn’t be positive if every single one of them were bewitched but she had no doubt that in time they would be. Deeper and deeper they dove into the night and with that the princes grew more in charm.

Deva who had drunk more alcohol than most should in a night yet had but a small buzz. Her tolerance level had grown incredibly in her recent years. Instead of listening to the chatter around the table Deva wondered if her family had figured out she was missing.

Deep in thought Deva hardly heard the loud throat clearing from the person trying to grab her attention. Julia had to nudge her shoulder in order to pull her out of her trance.

Marcus didn’t look upset, not even a little. Rather he was staring at her adoringly.

“So, love, care to tell us where your mind was wondering to?”

“It should be obvious.” He frowned and she continued to rant in her distress. “Our families will realize we are missing. How long do you expect to keep us here? We didn’t sign up for this.”

“It will take some adjusting to but I promise it’s not as bad as you think it is.”

Deva shook her head, pissed off and annoyed. “Not as bad as I think. You’ve got to be kidding me. I don’t care how gorgeous and charming you princes are. I want to go home.”

“Well that’s not going to happen any time soon.” Lucian felt the need to but in.

“How long do you think this wine will keep these girls at bay before they too start rebelling?”

“Deva,” Marcus spoken her name with such care she had to turn and look at him. He was offering a peace. “When this is all over the possibility of seeing your family again won’t be terribly unimaginable.”

She saw truth in his eyes and that silenced her.

Darius took it upon himself to be the guided entertainment. He accommodated to the girls and Deva quickly picked up on his attentive vibe.

“If you ladies will join us on the terrace, it is a lovely night tonight, and it should be enjoyed.”

It took a few seconds for the girls to grasp their footing but luckily none fell on their way to the doors. Deva tried to conspicuously stand back and book it for the other exit. Someone unfortunately stopped her attempt by grabbing her arm.

“Where do you think you are going?” His low velvet voice was raspy and aggressive.

“I might not be a vampire but I also bite.”

She knew his type. He wanted a challenge; a woman to talk back to him and try and put him in place. He needed an equal.

“I need to use the restroom. Care to watch?” She was trying to be smart but was a little afraid he might take her offer.

He released her and she could tell it irritated him to do so. She resumed walking towards the doors with her heart thumping with adrenaline. There was a man dressed in a suit standing just outside.

“Excuse me can you point me towards the kitchen.”

He smiled warmly and said, “I’ll personally show you where it is my lady.”

“Thank you.”

The tall butler led her down the hall to the left where they entered through a white door. The kitchen was impressively large and modern. Deva heard the footsteps of the butler fade way, and she made her way to the man in the middle of the all the cookware.

“Ciao.” He greeted her kindly.

“Ciao,” she smiled.

He was a middle aged man with a stained apron covering his faintly large belly.

“What can I do for you, bella?” He asked her in a very thick Italian accent.

“I am in need of a drink. Do you have anything stronger than wine you can spare?”

He grinned and raised a curious brow. “Is there any particular reason for this drink?”

“I don’t know it you can tell but I was struck by a vampire prince.” She wanted to add in asshole but wasn’t sure how fond the chef was with the princes.

“Your cheek is red.” He quickly grew remorseful.

“And still throbbing.”

“I know exactly what you need.” The Italian man started to pour some dark liquor into a cup for her.

She graciously took it and said her thanks before making her way back out. Would the princes even notice her absence? Technically Lucian was the only one to see her leave. Could she make a run for it? Was there a phone nearby?

Yet if the princes were telling the truth what good would a phone call be in a different world? She was more than certain Sprint didn’t cover this kind of service. With no efforts and disappointment haunting her Deva headed back to the dining area.

The night sky was already fading to pink and purple by the time she reached the terrace. Deva soaked in the beautiful view as she took a sip of her drink. It was strong, very strong. The Italian knew how to drink. Good thing she liked her drinks strong, or else she would have spit it back out as soon as it hit her mouth.

Deva heard giggles and found the girls crowded around the princes. They didn’t have a care in the world but it was better that way. That was the whole point for the wine wasn’t it? It was a sneaky distraction, blinding them from their new reality.

She took another gulp and savored the burn as it went down like lava through her throat. She loved the feeling. She welcomed it and embraced it knowing it would dull any pain she felt; physically and emotionally.

As she turned back to the view of the gardens, she felt a hand on her shoulder. She didn’t want to turn to see who it was.

“You leave for the restrooms and return with brandy in hand.”

His voice was low and slick. She assumed it was Lucian since he was the only one who knew where she was supposed to be going.

“It’s to help with the pain.” She took another sip hoping to fade him from sight. “Either you purposely struck me too hard, or you didn’t know your own strength.”

“It has been awhile since I’ve been around humans.”

Was that almost an apology? “How long exactly?”

If she couldn’t fight it then maybe she should give in to the ridiculous vampire fantasy. Perhaps it was a dream and she was going to wake up soon.

She was humoring herself; wondering how far her imagination would take her.
“This personal? A decade or two. Here humans are mostly food. It is rare if they ever get turned into a vampire.”

“Well, a group of love struck/desperate women should cure that right up,” she shook her head.

He was in for one hell of a rollercoaster ride with this group of ladies. He had no idea what he’d gotten himself into. Barely knowing any of the women yet she knew what they were thinking and what they wanted from the three god-like princes.

He smirked.

Without any more words, Deva began strolling down the stone stairs to the garden. The further they got the more complex the castle became. The castle, palace was literally built inside a mountain.

It was a stunning view like something out of a fantasy novel.

“The elevation of the mountain gives us an advantage from enemies. The gardens stretch out for a mile and descend into a vast mass of trees. The other side is connected to a waterfall with a magnificent view of our kingdom.”

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She couldn’t wait to see it for herself. “Do you have a lot of enemies?”

“At the moment we have world peace.”

“Well isn’t that delightful?” Who would have guessed vampires were the ones who could achieve world peace?

They continued walking side by side.

“How old are you?”

“For humans, isn’t it considered rude to ask that question?”

“Yes, but you’re not human,” she stated.

“Let’s just say I’m over 500 years old.”

“Wow.” It was amazing how incredibly preserved they were. She wouldn’t have giving the princes a day over 25 if she didn’t know any better.

“Like I said you’ll get used to it.”

“I don’t think so.” She didn’t want to believe it.

He stared deeply into her eyes, wondering what she was thinking.

“I think the only reason I haven’t freaked out already is because this feels like a dream. That and I’ve also read too many Twilight/vampire books in my day.”

He laughed again, and Deva couldn’t help but smirk. “You’re laughing, but that’s probably also the reason why the other girls are not scared of you. They want their Edward too.”

Lucian stopped laughing and gazed into her big brown golden eyes. He didn’t have to cover his emotions. He wanted her to see him for who he was. He wanted all the girls to see his true self.

“Don’t worry Lucian I know you’re not all cute and cuddly like Edward. You definitely have a dark side. I’m afraid it’s too dark.”

He lips curled at her honesty. “You don’t have to worry baby doll, I won’t unleash my dark side on you again. That is unless you want me too.”

Deva stumbled back. She didn’t know how to react or answer back to his last comment. So instead she tried to change the subject. “Don’t call me baby doll.”

“I’m a prince I can call you whatever I want.”

“Are you one of those royal pain princes?”

“Baby, you have no idea.”

Deva closed her eyes. This new world and the mysterious people in it were far more than her brain could take in for one day. It had to be a dream. Any minute she expected to wake up in her own bed and reminisce on her awful nightmare.

The nine girls were eventually ushered back into their rooms. They were told to be ready in the morning to have a meeting with the princes discussing their first challenge which was also the next day. Deva made it to the bed only to crash on top without any thought left to care about.

She hugged the pillow tight and prayed her worst nightmare was just that; a nightmare. As she pulled the covers over her body, she wished her dream wasn’t so physical next time because her face was still hurting.

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