Maya had not done so much as to blink her eye since the incident the day before, simply terrified of the dark shadows that lurked in the room she had now been forced to reside in.
She marveled under the feel of the smooth silk sheets she sat on. Although at the edge of the four poster oak bed, she could still feel its accordance. The room was more than twice the size of the one she usually slept in, it was more beautiful than anything she had ever laid her eyes upon, she would have enjoyed its beauty if the place did not terrify her so.
The room's temperature gave her a deep chill, and the grandly lit chamber a flickering of orange flames drawing out from candles.
It was hard to tell if it were the coldness of the wind swinging in from the large open window facing a few metres away from her with velvet black drapes hanging over them or the vile creature that had bared fangs with a face just like hers that terrified her.
The marble lined floor felt cold under her bare foot, she had not intended to go without shoes in case of a possible means for an immediate escape but was coerced by the maid instructed to serve her before bed. The plea in the girl's eyes was too much to bear that she had no other choice but to agree.
A lot of things ruled through her hazed mind as she stared into the fiery dark horizon growing a warm sun beneath. It was almost time. Time for her captors to escort her to her aunt's house without a clue as to what they might do.
She had never encountered such an impossible experience in the nineteen years of her life and it shook her to the bone.
The doors opening inward snapped Maya out of her thoughts, shifting her gaze onto a pair of maids. She stood up abruptly suddenly aware of the thin satin linen of a night gown she was currently in. They both carried in their bathing equipments, a dress and food.
"Good Morning milady, it appears you are awake already, marvelous, we may proceed now onto getting you ready for the day" The blonde one chirped, an uncomfortably wide smile plastered on her face as her eyes gleamed under her thick lashes.
"Ready me for the day? I do not understand" Maya responded inquisitively, her mind reliving the day's before's event. Long sharp canines grazing along her fair skin, causing her to whimper in fright.
"Her majesty has assigned us to get you ready for the day milady" Maya knew not how to protest for something in her told her that she was in no condition to refuse Kevida's order for fear of being killed. She gave an approving nod to the maids and they acted almost immediately,from getting her a bath to clothing her, they had done an incredulous job.
She was wildly surprised to see that they had brought her the gown she wore the previous day, washed and dried. The surprise was adequately quenched with relief of not having to wear another exquisite material like the night gown she had worn for the night.
She had been offered food quite a number of times by the chirpy blonde who seemed to be the only one that could care so much as to engage in a conversation between the two maids - but had turned down the offer just as many times as asked, trying not to pay attention to the enticing and mouth-watering aroma of freshly baked bread and eggs. Not because she was not hungry but scared reason being from sheer fear of being poisoned.
"Why do you refuse food? Do you fear it is poisoned? I assure you the only thing in that food is nutrition. Eat you will need it for today."
Maya found herself staring into that glacial deep green eyes of his. She had not realized his entry until now for she was distracted by her own troubled thoughts while staring back at her reflection through the mirror she was sitting in front of. He was standing in front of her dressed in his usual uniform and holding in his hands the tray of food.
The blonde maid who had earlier introduced herself as Thera ceased combing Maya's hair on the Captain's arrival. He dismissed her as well as the other maid. Following his order they both left the room, closing the door behind them.
The sounds of the doors being shut quickened Maya's hearbeat, as if on impulse she grabbed the brush left by Thera from the table in front of her, stood up and held it out to the captain in a defensive position.
Hunter let out a brief chuckle, watching her in amusement but her expression held the contrary - defiant and resilient, she was caught unaware by his sudden bright attitude for she was only used to his hard-stoned features. He studied her for a moment before placing the tray on the bed, taking a few steps forward, towards her.
"Are you trying to threaten with a hair brush?" His voice was a deep cool, something about it felt uneasy at the same time untroubling. He was mocking her just as equally he was daring her. She held the brush tightly, hands trembling unsteadily.
"Stay away from me." Hunter took no heedings to her warning as he trodded lightly closer to her. Her back against the wall set her into an alarming realization of her current situation. There was no where to run and she was trapped, alone, with him.
Hands shaking she dropped the brush in surrender only when he was a few steps away. A second-long smirk grazed Hunter's lips. "Wh..what are you?" Maya stuttered.
"You mean to ask if I am like her. Perhaps, but I am not of her kind." Maya shook her head in confusion.
"I do not understand what you mean by that, what do you mean not of her kind?"
"I will have to disagree with you on that one, you know what I speak of."
"I.. I do not." Maya responded.
"Mayhap it is simply because you live in a kingdom free of the supernatural but even so, what do you believe her to be Maya?"
"I.. I" Maya stammered, shaking her head.
"What do you perceive in your myths to be a creature of the night? One that can bare fangs and hungers for blood." He stepped closer, eyes narrowing darkly making her shrink under his perusing gaze.
"No.. It cannot be." Her tone lowers.
"Tell me Maya, what is she?"
"They are not real, they are nothing but tales." Maya tried to tell herself but the reality of what she saw could not have deceived her. She had seen clearly, too clearly for her own sanity.
"Say it Maya. What is Kevida!?" He pressured, his voice growing louder, startling her.
"Vampire." She muttered.
"It does not make sense but they are myths." She said. "You said you are the same but not of the same kind, what did you mean by that?"
"Enough with the questions, eat something, you will need it, I will be back."
And just like that, he disappeared. Here one moment and gone in the next. She slumped slowly down the wall, her glazed eyes fixed on the cold floor.
Maya could simply not make do with the recent revelation. It truly frightened her of what they could do to her now realizing the strange world she had been dragged into, all because of him.
It had been a few hours since the Captain had exited the room, leaving her in a dazed state. Her mind pondered on so many possibilities through the long-felt hours. She had tried banging on the door for help, even screaming her lungs out but to no avail, the windows were her only options.
Ripping the drapes into a long line of thick clothing, she tied it to one of the four bed posts, yanking it severally as she steadily tested its firmness.
Maya peered out the large window, the strong wind combing wildly through her lengthy silver hair, whipping it out of her face.
Holding the improvised version of a rope in one hand and the window pane in the order, she pushed herself up. Now standing at the edge, her heart accelerated as she looked down, measuring the height with her eyes. If she lowered it just a little bit furt-
"I do not advice that to be a wise decision Lady Maya." Hunter stood at the widely opened door, a few guards behind him.
"Why? Do you fear I would die Captain? Do give a care if I lose my life?" She asked as she gazed into the depths of his darkened green eyes. A wave of humor stroke him at her questions as he thought of them to be nothing more but those of a childish girl.
"Die? No, you may sustain a few bruises but I assure you that you are no where close to death if to consider your present display of foolishness." Maya was sure her jaw had dropped somewhere between his sentence, all the while, Hunter watched keenly.
How dare he insult her wit so?
She knew it was time to go back to Cavernalt and she had made up her mind not to leave with them, especially not him, even if she was to risk dying. She took a sharp inhale, with her eyes closed and finger tightly curled around the make-do drapes of a rope, she put right foot forward, exhaled and took the other foot off.
Whatever happened next was beyond unexpected.
A reverberating force rippled through the air, instead of going down, Maya felt herself being thrown backwards, a countering effect sending her flying into the room and against the wall.
An endearing pain shot through different parts of her body, followed by a series of ringing silence toppling through her head. Her vision blurred for moments before she finally came back to her senses, two heavy men standing before her.
Their iron hands gripped her, pulling her to her feet. A pair of emerald eyes indented with a steel glare focused on her struggling form.
"What... What just happened?"
"An insurance to avoid things similar to what you had just attempted." He answered. She snarled at Hunter as he advanced towards her.
"Let go of me!" Taking her jaw in his hand, his green eyes studied the sides of her face. She glared hard at him, thinking of how much he would have burned if her looks could kill.
"She is... Undamaged." He proclaimed as he let go of her face, Maya drew herself out of his hands before he had a chance to unclasp her.
"Let us go, Her Majesty does not like to wait." All tenderness in Hunter's eyes had disappeared completely.
She knew he was not a good person but she had expected him to be less brute with her just as he did earlier. The expectations vanished just as fast as he had. He was not to be trusted, neither of them were.
Maya strived to take notes of the many turns and flights they had taken to get out of the castle but had lost count on the fifth. It was like a maze, all hallways resembled spotlessly, without a painting or artifact to differentiate them. She did not need to be reminded that she could get lost and recaptured before she even began running considering their speed.
The fresh breeze swept across Maya's flushed face resulting from anger as she stepped out the doors of the castle. Her skin bloomed sun-kissed under the warm weather. Her eyes settled on the people before her and most of all, the center of attention....Kevida.
She was fitted in a black slim linen shirt that encased the contours of her body, opened at the front to reveal her cleavage, leaving little to the imagination, atop was a black leather jerkin, her lean legs were encased in black leather leggins and her feet adorned in high leather boots. Her black wavy curled hair settled loosely across the sides of her natural face and under her fringed thick lashes lied a pair of blue icy irises watching her, arms folded against chest in an unlady-like fashion.
Behind her stood about three guards and horses. Maya failingly undid herself from the guards she was clasped in the hands of as she glared at her spitting image.
"We are set to go my dear doppelganger but you see there is only one problem." Kevida takes a second to pause as she walks closer towards Maya.
"We are yet to know where your aunt lives, mind sharing that little piece of information?"
"I will do no such thing." Maya responded fiercely, lunging at Kevida.
Hunter grabbed her upper arm strongly, pulling him sideways to face him, with his face hard as stone and fiery stamina burning in his green orbs, he addressed her.
"That is no way to speak to the Queen, girl. Behave or I will be forced to make you." In response, Maya blew scattered locks of her silvery hair out of her face from the sides of her mouth, glaring at him.
"No need for such vulgar warnings Hunter."
As Hunter let go of her, Maya registered Kevida's words in his mind. His name best fit him, she thought, he did always look so serious and overbearing.
"All she needs is a tad motivation and I know just the thing." Kevida flashed Maya an unfriendly grin.
"Bring the maid."
Thera was dragged out the castle, her face hidden under her unruly hair, her clothes rumpled, quite the opposite of what she looked earlier in the day, chirpy and lively. Maya fought against the hands that held her as she watched a guard slap the maid.
The sight of Thera's face after being brought up was the proved most shocking to Maya, a soft gasp escaping her lips. The maid's face pale purple, as if deprived of oxygen, her eyes barely open.
Kevida laid her hand open as she pointed it towards Thera. "I am afraid if you do not give me what I want, others will have to suffer for it, I would have settled for carrying out the example on you but would it not be a shame to ruin such a beautiful face as yours? As I may have use for it someday."
"Now back to the lesson, we will be starting with her hand, you have three seconds Maya, to decide if you would like Thera to continue working with two hands or not, but bear this in mind, having one hand should not stop her from carrying out her daily duties and if by any chance she fails to meet up with her usual tasks, the next will be her head."
Maya's eyes widened as a guard drew out his sword and another held Thera's hand out. On realizing the situation, the maid struggled futiley against the guard holding her in place.
"What makes you think I would care about a maid?" Kevida smiled at Maya with a smug expression.
"Three!" Kevida counted.
"No! Please! I beg Her Majesty for mercy!" Thera cried.
"Two!" Maya's breath accelerated as she watched in horror.
"I beg of you! Please!"
"One!" Kevida pronounced coldly. The guard positioned his sword to strike.
"Nooo!!! Please! Stop." Maya yelled and on Kevida's word, he stopped. Maya glared at Kevida as she spoke against gritted teeth.
"I will do it!"