Laurissa opened her eyes to see the day had long come and was soon ending. Lord Dunkan was not in the room. He sat patiently in the sitting room, enjoying the warmth of the fire.
“I am pleased you are awake. I am curious of something.” He projected through the tendril. Laurissa did not answer. “You will still answer me when I speak to you, Laurissa.”
“Yes, Master.” She sneered. Lord Dunkan’s anger consumed her. He commanded her to title him as ‘lord’. She will defy him to the very end. Lord Dunkan will have to kill her before she submits any further.
“That can be arranged.” He responded to her thought.
“Then do it, Lord Dunkan.” She called him by name, knowing it would anger him further. It did not work.
“I may someday, my dear. For now, you must teach me something.” He projected.
“What is it you wish to know?”
“Do you remember your human life?”
“Do you remember yours?”
“I am asking you! You may wish to die, and I will happily allow it, but you will still do as I ask with respect.”
Laurissa stood from the bed, and her head throbbed. Her tendril has not finished healing. She pushed the pain back and pulsed power running to the sitting room.
“I will not respect you until you show me respect!” she said verbally. “If you wish to master my body and mind, then you must earn it, not demand it.”
Laurissa did not realize the females were in the sitting room as well and heard her disrespect. They all looked at her wide-eyed and pale. The stench of fear filled the room like a fresh pile of ox dung.
‘Oh, this will be fun’ Laurissa heard his thought and looked at him curiously. Lord Dunkan took Laurissa’s arm and shoved her toward the door. “Follow me, Laurissa.” He said dangerously.
Lord Dunkan left toward the stone building where Zillah and Adrian were. He opened the door and allowed Laurissa in first. She began to feel trapped once again. The last time she was in the building, she was flogged and made to scalp Adrian. This time she will fight him. She knows Lord Dunkan is much stronger, but she will no longer be forced to do his evil.
Lord Dunkan ignored Laurissa’s thoughts as he closed the door behind them. Laurissa noticed Zillah lying on the blood stained floor. She appeared dead. Her heartbeat very slowly and quietly, her skin is ashen like dead skin would appear. She could barely hear Zillah’s blood trickling through her veins as a frozen stream flows in the winter.
A flash of light and ringing of metal brought Laurissa’s attention.
“You wish me to earn your respect?” Laurissa only looked at him, trying to understand what he meant to do. His tendril is darkened. He has blocked his thoughts from her. “I have one question for you, and you refuse to answer. Why is that?”
Laurissa will not speak. She will not give him the satisfaction of ruling her. She can see that he has trapped her. She belongs to no one.
She watched every movement he made. Lord Dunkan is obviously threatening her life. One of his swords seemed to reflect light while the other consumed it. The power she felt from Lord Dunkan frightened her. She is cornered and is preparing to defend herself. She made sure her tendril formed into a dagger. The book said the older a vampire is, the harder it is to force your way into their mind. Still, she will not make it easy for him. Something drove her to fight for her life and to fight for her freedom. She should have run long ago. Egypt sounded very enticing at the moment.
Lord Dunkan’s posture relaxed slightly. “Perhaps I have my answer.” He can see the defiance and hatred in her deep blue eyes. Everything about her told him she would defend herself. She is much different as a vampire than she was a human child. He did not begin molding her until after she turned. Her personality was of her own making. As a child, she did not trust anyone besides her mother. She refused to ask for help when she clearly needed it. Now she has a fire that burns within. She approaches anyone looking for a friend. She could not remember her human life and still have a love for complete strangers.
He wished he could hear her thoughts, but this is a delicate matter. He can not risk showing her his thoughts. Lord Dunkan began walking slowly and purposefully around her. Laurissa did not follow him with her eyes. This was a mistake. She would learn never to take her eyes off an enemy. Lord Dunkan quickly sliced Laurissa’s back. Its blade felt ice cold, and the wounds burned like fire as it followed her spin from her lower back to her shoulder blades. It is a new pain that brought Laurissa to her knees. She could feel the warm blood flow from her wound.
“I ask again. Do you remember your human life.” Laurissa refused to answer him. She will not give in. Panting, she gathered the pain and pushed it out. Lord Dunkan’s blade bit again as she tried to stand. This time the cut is slower across her back. It felt like he was slicing her in half. The pain paralyzed her, and panic set in. Her heart hammered in her chest, and her mind told her to run. She wanted to fight somehow, but all she could do was scream. “Do you remember your human life!”
“No!” Her voice betrayed her. She did not want to give in.
“Was that so hard? You only do this to yourself. If you do as I say, I will not need to go through such extreme measures.” He continued to walk around her while she composed herself. Laurissa pushed the pain out and stood before Lord Dunkan.
“What is your earliest memory.” She glared at Lord Dunkan, defying him with every ounce of strength she had.
He will die for this.
Lord Dunkan’s elbow met her face knocking her over, and the dark blade bit into her belly, pinning her to the ground. The pain is blinding. Darkness threatened to consume her. Lord Dunkan allowed the blade to stay in its spot as he stood and walked around her.
“What is your earliest memory?” She could taste blood and bile in her mouth. Every movement she made sent more fire throughout her body. “You are not strong enough to fight me, my dear. It is best you answer my questions. I am not unreasonable. Do as I say, and you will remain unharmed. Defy me or betray me, and I will become very violent. You will learn I do not have to be in your presence to inflict pain.” He continued walking around slowly, studying Laurissa.
Lord Dunkan opened his tendril. He could feel her pain. Her thoughts of his death were plainly seen. He did not have to read her mind. “What is your earliest memory” He projected.
Before Laurissa could respond, the memory of him stealing her virginity and telling her she would become a vampire flashed in her mind. She tried to grab the memory and silence it. “Very interesting.” Lord Dunkan said as he pulled the dark blade out. Laurissa screamed at the pain and rolled over. “What is so interesting?” she coughed.
“Now you speak? My dear, you are for me to do as I please. I do not have to share my thoughts. Being mated means nothing other than a means to gain control!” He projected in his smooth frightening voice.
Why is he so cruel? His evil desire consumed his every thought. How does a creature become this way? The only way to rid evil is to destroy it.
Lord Dunkan ignored her thoughts and relaxed his posture. “There is a matter of respect, my dear. I am master of this house. You are not. Being mated to me does not give you any special leniency or rank in my home. I do not owe you respect, and I most certainly do not need to earn yours.”
Laurissa could smell a lie. Something was not entirely correct. It did not matter. His actions will manifest to ensure he has complete control over her.
“Then end me as you took Adrian.” Laurissa’s wounds began to heal, and she was able to look at poor Zillah’s body behind Lord Dunkan.
“You have enslaved me. I will be a slave to no one, and I will continue defying you until I am released from you or this world.”
“You enslaved yourself. You came to me filthy, on hands and knees. I cleaned you and fed you. I raised you. I gave you eternal life. Do you not think I have earned your respect and your service?”
The vile smell of Dung engulfed her once again.
Laurissa Brought forth her memories. Shadows of images came forth, and she saw a young girl rummaging through a slop pile. Lord Dunkan offered food and shelter. “I did not beg you. You took me.”
“You followed me just as you willingly lived with me and then willingly came to my bed.”
“You cannot say I willingly did anything. You commanded me with the threat of consequences.”
“And now you would rather suffer consequences than obey me?” Laurissa glared at him. “Very well, my dear. Remember this night. Remember it is you who asked this of me. Most of all, my dear, remember who your master is.” His hissed
A cold power flowed into her grabbing her heart and, deeper still, to her soul. It traveled to her mind and strangled her tendril. She could hear a scream so chilling it froze her joints. A dark cloud came to her with whispers of peace and rest then it went away. The chill left, and she found herself on the blood-stained floor in a fetal position. Tears streamed down her eyes on their own.
“You do not have to love me. You do not have to like me. In fact I have said you would learn to hate me. You must respect me and submit.”
Death promised release and peace. Being enslaved to a vampire for eternality is no way to live. She might as well forfeit her life now.
“No?” came the chilling voice. The same chill she now knew to be death’s call. Lord Dunkan is death.
The scream came back with the cold grip that threatened to take her life. The dark cloud came once again, inviting her in. Her heart felt as though it is being crushed, and her lungs fought for air. Her joints screamed from the freezing grip. A shadow slowly formed, and she saw a woman lying on a bed of hay. She is sickly pale and coated in sweat. The blond hair and blue eyes reminded her of Parnell. She had given up on living. Laurissa had vowed to never give up and to fight to live no matter what. The shadow slowly faded as if she was going away from it. The love and the promise of peace and the arms that would embrace her tempted her to let the pain go.
“No!” She had to fight. She could win. She will find a way to defeat her master. She would need to be patient for the opportunity to present itself. She is immortal now. Time is on her side. She could endure Lord Dunkan until she could free herself. She will make sure to fight for her freedom every day. He will regret enslaving her.
The dark cloud came closer. She resisted its call. The labor for breath continued. She felt as though she was drowning. Then her lungs failed her. She could feel her body begin to relax, and the black cloud reached her mind. Then in a blink of an eye, it disappeared, and the chill left her body. Her heart fluttered, trying to pump blood back through her body and bring life to her lungs. Life-giving air rushed in as she choked on it.
Lord Dunkan’s boot came into focus, and she could feel her body wet with sweat.
“Do you submit?”
She felt sickened at the thought. Laurissa had no choice. Submit or die. She planned to live and fight for her freedom. “Yes, Master.” Her body went ridged once more as the pain of death went through her. “Yes, my Lord.” She managed to say.
“Very well. Compose yourself and follow me it is time to feed.”
“Yes, my lord.”
Lord Dunkan was impressed with Laurissa’s will to live. Death will always defeats life. She would have succumbed eventually, but she resisted valiantly. Some of his strongest sons did not last as long. There was a power there that should not be there. It began to grow as she fought to live.
He bought time. He is unsure how much time he had. He will work quickly to make her his and watch as her power grows. She will one day come to him as a mate should or kill him. He hoped Laurissa will come to him and allow him to harness the power he saw.