Searching the Darkness
I watched my eldest son and his Nekojin Mate leave my study. They had wanted to know how to make Aio Immortal. Soren had looked so sad, if only he had known the truth maybe I could bear to look at my son again with pride. There were just some things that I had hidden from everyone and having to hide them from Soren had hurt me more than I had admitted in the past. There were just some truths I couldn’t bear myself.
Soren would never understand until he had to see it for himself. I had faced many hard truths in my millennia of life but this one hard fact was not something I wanted to face. Adrianna had been my Mate, my one true love and losing her had hardened my heart in many ways.
I can still remember the very moment I saw Adrianna, her wild black hair blowing in the wind as she ran for safety.
The smoke from the Human city was suffocating to say the least as my unit and I ghosted through the burned-out streets. My father had heard of their depravity but for them to have attacked their own people in such horrific ways was something I did not understand.
True there had been wars among the Vampires but nothing of this magnitude nor devastation. Normally we stayed out of the affairs of the other races but this time was different.
The Humans had violated nature.
They had created a new race by their godsless science, the Nekojin. Myself and a large force of Shadow Walkers passed the barrier into their domain to rescue the poor enslaved Nekojin.
We had already freed a very large amount of the poor creatures, and to say I had seen the like before would have been a lie.
They appeared Human at first, but there was a very distinct difference. They wore feline ears and a tail, something my soldiers’ thought were just costumes. That is until one of them tried to pull them off and they did not detach and it had made the poor creature yowl in pain. Just like a feline.
The soldiers had grown very grim at that point and had disappeared into the Human city. The four with me had always stayed with me, it was their job.
‘Your Highness, our people have found another auction house.’ one of my friends said to me softly.
I had nodded and started to move towards the appointed direction. It hit me in the chest like a ton of bricks. I could not move from my spot. Something was keeping me right where I was and it wasn’t anything other than myself.
I felt the need to stay right where I was and I couldn’t move. Suddenly I hear her, the soft yells and screaming. The running and trampling of underbrush. Whoever it was, was coming in quickly to my right and they were in trouble.
A flash of unruly black hit my eyes before the most beautiful woman came into view. She was terrified as she ran frantically from her Human pursuers. Thankfully for her she was running right into Vampiric help.
I flashed to her as my friends moved with me to block the Humans that were hunting her. ‘Shhhh, everything is all right now.’ I had crooned to her, trying to calm her frantic movements as I captured her hands in mine.
Gods, she was so soft, like porcelain.
‘Please, please, don’t hurt me’ she cried wanting to fight against me but was obviously too weak to try.
‘Oh angel, I would never harm one such as you.’ I said before gathering her into my arms. I was beginning to become very protective of this little slip of a Nekojin and I did not understand why this was happening right now.
She looked up at me, her golden amber eyes seeing right into my very essence, ‘You really mean that.’ she whispered shocked at her own words
I smiled at her warmly, ‘Yes I do, very much. I will protect you from now on little angel.’ I said as I lifted her onto my shoulder and turned to my friends. ‘I need to take her back to get food and clothing. Continue on with your mission.’ I said thoughtfully.
‘Be careful Highness.’ they chimed getting me to roll my eyes.
‘You are the ones that need to be careful.’ I growled before flashing back to the outpost we had created for the Nekojin. There were Healers and many other things this angel needed.
When we reached the outpost, I could hear the squeak of surprise from the little angel on my shoulder. I smiled a little at the sound, it was so damn adorable.
‘My father heard of the Humans folly and we came prepared for anything. We did not really know what we would truly find but we did come prepared. There are Healers, people that can fix anything that hurts, baths, clothes, food and if you are tired, I am certain there is a nice bed somewhere you can sleep in.’ I explained to her as I carried her into a sectioned off part of the entire tent. She was my guest and she was going to be treated as such and this time I was going to sit right here.
She looked up at me curiously, ‘Y-your f-father??’ she asked softly
‘Yes, I am a Vampire Prince. My father is the King. I am not one to sit behind and do nothing. I have a brother that is rather fond of sitting on his hind end and doing nothing. I, however, am not like that. If there is a problem, I go help fix it myself. It’s very simple to me.’ I said almost mechanically. I had said those words so many times it was becoming programmed.
I got to hear the most wonderful sound I could have ever heard in my world. The sound of her soft angelic giggle. ‘You sound so enthusiastic about your station.’ she giggled covering her mouth, her eyes growing large in fear.
‘You have nothing to fear, angel. Nothing is going to harm you.’ I said holding her close to my chest. I could feel her shaking and it made me so angry. How could they be so horrible to someone so small and delicate?
‘I-I’m sorry,’ she whispered hiding her face in her wild black hair.
‘Angel you have nothing to be sorry for. You are free from the Humans; they no longer have any power over you. Once my people have cleared this city of your people, we will move you all to a better world. One with sunshine and green fields. A place just for your people.’ I explained trying to settle her nerves.
However, it had the complete opposite effect on her. She began to panic and squirm against me. ‘I-I do-don’t w-wanna g-go w-with t-them.’ she stuttered softly a look of terror on her face. It was like she was more afraid of her own people than the Humans and their beatings. Something was definitely wrong here.
Once I got her away from everyone, I was going to be asking her a lot of questions that I knew were going to upset her but I needed answers.
I had waited most of the day for her and when she had been fully clothed and groomed, she was even more beautiful than before. It was like she was my air. I needed to know why she was so scared of everyone.
‘Little one,’ I began holding my arms out to her, she immediately came to me letting me wrap my arms around her small body.
‘I know you want to know why I’m scared.’ she whispered softly against my chest before I could even form the words in my own mouth.
I looked down at her a little shocked, but resolving myself into curiosity. ‘Yes. I want to know why you are afraid of your own people.’ I said seriously.
‘They do not like me because I had a decent Human. I had been treated very well before the war. My master had treated me as a pet, yes but I was a spoiled pet with a lot more comforts than most of my kind. I was not dealt with harshly. Most of my people do not like me. The Males will want to claim me for status among the new world clans and I do not want that.’ she said, mumbling most of her words, but telling me why she was afraid of her people. Jealousy was a hard thing to overcome. Even for Vampire’s it was difficult.
I could really only think of one solution and it was one I wanted more than anything and it was something neither of us was truly ready for.
‘Stay with me, little angel. With me you will never be treated as a pet but a queen. You will never know sorrow again.’ I whispered pulling her against me, feeling how right it was to have her against me.
‘I will come with you, under one condition’ she whispered, her soft hand finding its way to my rugged face.
‘What would that be my Lady?’ I asked curiously, leaning into her touch.
‘Tell me your name. My name is Adrianna. Regardless of whatever you choose to call me that is my given name.’ she said with a fit of angelic giggles.
I smiled brightly at her, ‘My name is Draven Knight of the House Drakon. I would love it if you would call me Dre.’ I said using the nickname my friends had given me.
She rewarded me with a smile. ‘All right Dre, what is it that you want from me?’ She asked me her body growing a little stiff with her words.
At first, I don’t think I fully understand her question until I really looked at her face. Her smile never reached her eyes, it was forced. She was scared.
‘Little one I want nothing but for you to be yourself. As I have already told you, you are free. That means you may do as you wish. If you want to stay with me you may, but if you don’t, I will make sure you are safe wherever you are.’ I said seriously, making sure she knew I was telling her the truth.
It took her a few moments to realize I wanted her to live a free life with me but when she did realize that she smiled at me with a smile that could stop anyone’s beating heart.
‘Why would you want to protect something as worthless as me?’ she asked me softly, turning her face away from me.
Her words shocked me for a moment, before angering me. The Humans had treated her so badly that she had thought herself worthless and that angered me. Every life held meaning, hers, to me even more so. It had all made no sense how a sentient being as intelligent as the Humans could be so empty.
‘My sweet little angel. You are a person, a being that feels and has dreams of something better. You have the right to be cared for to the best of anyone’s ability. Now I have seen your resounding beauty, of both your face and your soul and I wish to claim you for myself. I want you for my wife.’ I said hearing her soft shocked gasp. ‘I want to erase all of your doubts and fears and give you a life worth someone such as yourself.’
She looked at me for what seemed like an eternity, a silence stretching between us that was not awkward but somehow calculating. I felt Adrianna calculate her chances with everything. It was like she was seeing all of her possibilities and seeing if she could not only want to live with me but become what I wanted and want to be my wife.
She was so intelligent that I couldn’t have been prouder to have found her.
Adrianna saw all of her ins and outs, the good and bad in everything.
She had smiled at me and nodded her head to me, ‘I accept your help Prince Dreven. I ask that you allow me the time to know you better as a free Nekojin.’ she had said to me in acceptance. Her smile finally reaching her eyes.
I was in heaven, or as close as a Vampire could ever get.
Adrianna had come to live with me in the Palace for three years and those years had been the happiest I had ever had. Then when we had finally decided to commit to such a hard undertaking, changing Addy to a Hybrid, she had not been strong enough. The dire situation still haunted my very existence as I watched my very happiness fade away.