A Friend's Advice.
Daphne pulled up her dress to cover her breasts and face the unexpected intruder at once.
As she turned, sharp, deep black eyes found her.
“What are you doing here?” she asked. A little indignant at her lack of privacy. And at the idiocy of taking off her attire in the living-room. The tone of her voice betrayed a bad temper, but only she knew that she was hiding an immediate fear.
Lorcan couldn’t speak. He was unable to, not when the sight of her silky bare skin had made him forget why he had returned. She was the one who bore the mark.
It was her, but why? A mortal?
How was it possible that she was his demoness? Of all the possibilities that existed, it never occurred to him that a mortal, or rather this woman who had provoked in him a surprising desire to possess her at that dance, was the one destined for him. He could not make sense of it all. How did she...? The woman everyone is talking about, Rothvaln’s mistress?
“How did you get the mark on your back?” He finally asked without any intention of revealing what he knew.
She recalled Bossurk’s words, and trusting that the old demon was right, she finally decided to speak. “I have no idea why I have the mark, but it all happened when I was with Bossurk. I touched something I shouldn’t have.”
He squinted his eyes at her. Not even being able to believe that she was his. But there was no excitement in finally meeting her. Not when her loyalty was probably to Rothvaln, the fucker.
“Do you know what that mark means?” she asked.
It can’t be her. His mind was in turmoil, the same phrase over and over again.
Her eyes were piercing his completely black ones. He could sense the irritation in her impatient gaze, waiting for the real answer that she would never find if it was up to him. This woman was not the right one for him; she was a mortal. She was not worthy of the position that was rightfully hers.
“I don’t know.” He just said.
A strange vibe she got at that moment, he was lying to her. “Are you sure you don’t know?” she said with an inquisitive look.
“Who else knows about your mark?”
“Bossurk and you. In his opinion, no one should know about this, except you. I would like to ask you what the reason would be. But I have a feeling you’ll tell me again that you don’t know, right?”
Lorcan’s eyes, now grey, were like sharp daggers cutting into hers.
“Follow Bossurk’s advice. It will not be good for you if someone discovers the mark you are carrying.”
“So that means, not only do you know what it means, but others do too?”
“Woman, do not contradict me in this matter. I’m doing this for-”
“My good?” She scoffed. “Okay, let’s pretend you’re doing it for that reason. If you have nothing else to say, I think you should leave.”
“What did Maxius say to you?” He remembered at the end the reason for his return. Before, he left her alone, but he never really left, no. He had stayed outside in the darkness of the night, trying to appease what seemed to be a desire. Because he could not allow himself to desire her, for she was who she was.
“Sorana was there, but Maxius said she later disappeared and never heard from her again. Any other ideas where to look?”
Daphne could sense the imminent danger of that demonic look. Seeing how this demon’s gaze now rested in her hands, which still covered her breasts. She saw how his eyes slowly rose to her face. “Cover yourself well.” Lorcan left.
In the Realm of Dragons
Lorcan did not appear in the usual private library but on one of the Kingdom’s cliffs. A dark sea was spreading below, reaching the horizon and getting lost in it. The harsh breeze blew his dark hair off.
He took a deep breath, closing his eyes and letting the salty air embrace him, the smell of freedom that was not complete. Only when he could succeed in obtaining what he had lost would that sense of wholeness return to him, just as before. But now there was her, the only creature who was destined to persuade him, to appease his torments, to love him and only him.
What an irony. Lorcan smiled bitterly. She, who released him from his cell. Rothvaln’s beloved and a mortal who was his lady by right. But what could he do? Certainly, he would not find a way to develop an intimate bond with her. He could not. The hatred for Rothvaln, his dislike for mortals, weighed on his heart.
“Daphne.” Her name slipped off his tongue with melancholy—a pleasant and evocative name - In the end, Rothvaln kept the most precious thing I could have.
“What are you doing here, my lord?” Teias appeared beside him.
“Just thinking,” Lorcan replied.
“So what did you find out?” said Teias.
The half-naked image of Daphne was the first thing that came to his mind without being able to avoid it. The memory of her face, her smile, her eyes...
“My lord?” Teias asked again.
“Sorana was there, as Maxius said, she disappeared from there. Once again, we are back to square one.”
“And Maxius was telling the truth?”
“It was not me who spoke to him. Daphne did.”
“Really?” Teias asked a bit strangely. And then he smiled.
“Nothing, just that she is more capable than I thought. I guess Maxius saw in her what Rothvaln did.”
When he heard that name being said. An almost uncontrollable rage runs through his heart: “Don’t you have anything else to do?” Lorcan asked.
“In fact, yes, I must go to the Kingdom. As I told you, I have already begun the search for your demoness.”
“Don’t do it.”
“That’s an order!” Lorcan fired.
“Why don’t you want to do it?” Rarely did Teias raise his voice to him. After all, many could say that there was a particular friendship between them. “She must be somewhere, unprotected. Don’t you care that someone might take advantage of her?”
“Teias-” Lorcan began to say in a nearly defeated voice. “Don’t look for her anymore.”
Teias observed him for a few long minutes. He did not believe that Lorcan would be able to abandon the demoness that had been granted to him by fate. “You know who she is, don’t you?”
Lorcan sighed but did not respond.
“I hope you know what you are doing. You are not allowed to regret it if you later lose her forever.” Teias disappeared.
“I’ve already lost her,” Lorcan confessed to the wind in a whisper.
Back in the private library, he resumed his hostile and impatient attitude. Myron and Maret were waiting for him.
“My lord,” Maret and Myron bowed.
“Maret, you told me before that Rothvaln sent Daphne to the Lycans Realm. Do you know what the reason was?”
“I don’t quite know. Rothvaln sent her to a ball King Alaric and his Luna gave in honor of their heir.”
“I don’t think King Alaric has anything to do with Rothvaln, but rather should be his Queen,” Myron spoke.
“She is the new Master of Shadows,” Myron revealed.
“Of course, it must have been for her. Maybe she made some kind of pact with Rothvaln. And he, of course, needs her now”. Lorcan went on. “We must pay a visit to the King of the Lycans and greet the Master of Shadows. After all, it was thanks to her that I was able to leave that place. Myron, announce to King Alaric our visit. I don’t want to show up and cause trouble”.
“Nor that he and all his Lycans could handle us.” Maret scoffed.
“Maret, it’s a matter of respect and courtesy. Something that you clearly still lack”. Lorcan replied harshly.
“I am sorry, my lord,” she said in an apologetic tone.
“You are dismissed,” he ordered.
Walking towards the dark green chair that stood between one of the windows and one of the big bookshelves, Lorcan collapsed on it. The cloudless full moon watched him in silence. He was just repaying his attention. If he hadn’t gone back there, he would never have known the truth. Because he was sure that Daphne had no intention of telling him. She would know sooner or later the relationship between her mark and him, of that he was utterly convinced.