Ember Ash danced as she
never had danced before, completely and utterly drunk from the ecstasy. Well,
there was a bit of spiked wine involved in there too but it wouldn’t matter.
The hellfire was intense, beautiful. Demons, both striking and foul shifted
alongside her drawing her into the Ring of Fire. This was The Dance of Asbyth,
dances of ecstasy and death. Bodies were drawn in like moths to flame. The
seductive sway beckoned every twisted creature – human or not - to writhe in
time with the music, the thrumming hum that penetrated the air Ember had never
felt such raging joy in her life. Her slender, mortal body molded with Prince Singulden and slipped back, merely a
hairs-breath away before linking together once more. His exquisite, dark hair
gleamed off the fire as the light glinted off razor sharp fangs as he casually
passed a hand around the back of her neck, pulling her ever the more closer to
his large frame.
“I’ve waited too long for this.” Singulden whispered, the tip of his tongue slipped out to catch a taste of her alabaster skin.
Ember didn’t notice and if she did, it wasn’t perceived. She couldn’t have cared less. Even if she didn’t, the others undeniably did. Soon as the Prince’s grating hips met her own, the demons in the circle automatically stiffened and the air, if possible, seem to grow tighter as if everyone was holding their breath, waiting for her lover’s anger. If only she had noticed a lone being standing perfectly still just outside the ring of the circle, his silver locks darkened and melted into a duller, more stressing color with every passing second as time mocked him. It was dangerous gamble Ember had taken.
To dance with everyone but her lover was an immediate insult to one’s principal; especially if she had left the Sire himself for someone else mush less his womanizer of a brother! Given the time she had to take notice of the steadily growing rage clearly emanating from the demon, she would have straightway withdrawn from the Prince and hauled ass out. The creature was furious, jealous even, the muscles of his face stretched taunt beneath his pale skin as he glowered at his younger brother. Pure, unadulterated hatred seared like a living coil into opal-red orbs. If anything, his glare would’ve felled a lesser man. Seeing his Chosen obviously past the comfort zone of mutual friendship and his lecherous brother together, it was too much. Every tendon contracted, a monster clawed at his insides roaring all sorts of blasphemy. Seeing her, feeling her presence, it was driving him forward step by step. His pace threw the rhythm off causing all sorts of confusion; the Sire, the only creature alive that had the ability to upset sound and cadence with just a single step. The rhythm teased him, goaded him, increasing its pulse. The drifting forms became a whirl of nothing but shadows, their singing pierced the air, each bare foot stomped down to the ground resulted in an earth-shaking boom.
It was growing faster, it was gaining speed, it was on its way to becoming a maddening circle encasing Ember and his brother in in the center.
Before his eyes, the dark prince tilted his head up slightly from his current position between the crook of the girl’s neck and met his brother’s eyes smiling, feeling very smug and amused; the Sire was definitely mad. A snarl gripped the demon’s throat strangling his howl. His crimson orbs seared into Singulden, his jaws now gaping wide open, pearly, white fangs exposed; oh no you don’t boy.
Too late. The tang of blood filled his nose only fueling the fury and contempt apprehended within. Sire Beldhalgen pulled back his lips into a nasty grimace, his throat convulsing in disgust as he spun around and stormed out of the Ring; only the comfort of the night and its frisk air kept him sane and infuriatingly composed,
“As expected of the Sire of the Demon Society, you’re still perfectly composed even as you watch me take pleasure from her. Shouldn’t you be furious? She is your Chosen after all.” Prince Singulden’s gangly form appeared behind his older brother supporting Ember’s limp body in his arms. Beldhalgen merely snorted,
“Why do you think I taught myself to refrain from my temperaments? It took me centuries to perfect this, and the only thing I could manage is to take a breather and count to ten,” Beldhalgen twisted to look at his younger brother, “you, are of no help at all,” Singulden smirked,
“Well it’s painfully obvious what, not to mention who is holding you back.” He cradled Ember’s cheeks in a loving gesture, “you wouldn’t mind me borrowing her for a bit would you? After all, you’ve barely touched her ever since you brought her here.” He passed a tongue over his lips waiting for an answer. Beldhalgen inhaled sharply and let it out with a hiss between his teeth,
“We’ve spoken about this before and my answer will forever and always remain the same; no changeling I will not pass her over to you. Now kindly remove your hands from her before you find yourself missing both of your forelimbs. Even if you’re my brother, I would not hesitate to get rid of you,” the threat hung in the air, simmering, waiting, anticipating. Even Singulden was wise enough to quickly wash his hands off of the girl. Swiftly, in one elegant movement, the Sire swept the unconscious girl out of his brother’s arms,
“I’ll take her from here,” he raised an angled chin daring his brother to protest; after all, he was the eldest, the one with the most authority, the Sire of his entire race. As he turned away, a content smirk aroused his slim elfin features. Giving his brother a sidelong glance, he added silkily,
“Barely touched her? My dear brother, you have much to learn about me,” a wicked smile graced his lips, “if you have not noticed,” he took a few more steps ahead before swinging onto his mount and throwing Singulden a leering grin,
“I, perhaps, am more lecherous than you are, brother.”
The sun rose, a glowing ball of fire of cosmos and scorching heat. Luminous shafts passed easily between slightly drawn curtains, darting past the silk fabric and fell upon a small face bundled entirely in blankets, the thick comforter pulled up to her nose. With a muffled groan, Ember kicked back the covers and stretched; there wasn’t any use trying to snatch a few more hours of sleep when the sun was as your face. She maneuvered her body out of the warmth of the covers shivering when the cold struck her skin; maybe get out of bed wasn’t a good idea after all. Ember pulled her arms back, mouth splitting into a yawn. The mirror reflecting golden-brown locks of hair, a pretty, upturned face with striking chestnut colored eyes, down to a slender body with equally trimmed hips and forelegs. Rubbing sleep from her eyes, Ember glanced at the bed waiting for her to get back in. The temptation was hard to resist. She gave in, curling herself back into the inviting covers that beckoned her to return.
However, to one’s own hormonal nerves, there was something else more tempting. New weight creaked the area beside her and a warm hand crept up her bare arm,
“Arise Ember,” Beldhalgen murmured, on his lap he balanced a tray ladled with food. She cracked open an eye and pushed herself up. The smell of food appealed to her stomach more than going back to sleep. Then again, the sight of Beldhalgen’s stifled expression chased away the hunger. What was getting under his skin? Oh, the Asbyth. She ducked her head, eyes adverted, training them down to her small hands tightly clenched on her lap.
“I’m sorry,” she whispered, her mind whirled around as she winced at the recent memory; all that drinking, the dancing, Prince Singulden’s arms around her, the Ring of Fire, no wonder the Sire was pinched; he had clearly warned her never to touch the drink –and the Prince - since it would lead to unpleasant results. Beldhalgen sighed and rubbed his forehead in frustration,
“I warned you the drink would be too strong for you,” he muttered. Ember parted chapped lips to object, and then snapped it shut when he raised a finger to silence her,
“No, don’t’ say you’re fine,” his voice was cold, foreboding, crimson orbs glared at her. A hand, cold as the winters in Sidhean, threaded its fingers through hers, the pads of his thumb brushed over her knuckles before giving her hand a bruising squeeze, “you know how it makes me feel when you rebel.” Beldhalgen’s voice turned quiet, each exhale deadly as every word leisurely, unhurriedly twisted a hole into her heart. It was pure torture. Ember trembled as he dipped his head, feeling his cool breath wash across her face. The taciturn presence of his scorched her body, turning her insides to mush. A claw traced a fiery path down the side of her neck forcing an involuntary shudder pass through her body. Lips lightly nipped the flank of her chin and the hair on the nape of her neck rose in full alert.
A sly, minute smile twisted the corner of his lips as Beldhalgen tipped forward to run the tip of his nose delicately down to the hollow base of her throat, nuzzling his way to the base of her throat, the powerful thrumming of life hummed beneath his touch and the Sire felt the familiar rush of adrenaline fill his veins; just one bite, it was all he needed to be satisfied.
No. He shook his head and jerked back nearly toppling over the delicate girl squirming beneath him. She gave a choked groan and fell back; her fingers had strangled the folds of her nightgown into creases. It wasn’t possible to resist the seductive toxic that emanated off his chest; a scent that was warm and heady with the waves of drafting temptation emanating off his body. At a towering six foot five, he clearly was someone not to nitpick with.
“Beldhalgen…Sire,” Ember was on the verge of tumbling back into bed with the Sire in tow if he hadn’t withdrawn from her and pushed the tray of her morning’s breakfast onto her lap,
“Eat,” he said brusquely and stood up; he’d finish where they left off later. His idling fingers caught a lock of her hair and gently brought his lips to it. Without another word, the eldest of the Sidhean Family left his Chosen to eat alone silently closing the door after his wake. Ember bitterly nibbled at a toast and chugged down a glass of milk before taking an angry stab at an egg,
“That mucker, he didn’t have to leave me alone,” she muttered, a frustrated hiss escaped from gritted teeth as she finished the rest of her meal in total silence.
Drawing in her cloak, she proceeded to make her way outside the palace and stopped to watch the city come to life. Bustling creatures selling their wares from stalls displayed trinkets from the Human Dimension. If one was wealthy enough, he/she could petition the government to allow him/her to go into the Human Dimension and take a human of their choosing to stay with them at an overwhelmingly large price. However, when the Sire himself petitioned the counsel to allow him to kidnap a human for his own pleasures, almost immediately, the council rejected his request and presented him a fine variety of consorts to choose from. From when Ember had remembered, Devils from all over flocked like bees to honey to his side, each had connections to powerful nations and each beautiful and stunning in her own way. Nevertheless, the Sire politely refused each and every one of them, claiming that they didn’t have enough brains put together to fill a teaspoon.
In the death of the night, he deposited the money to a Portal-Man and in the death of the night, stole into the Human Dimension. He had happened to come upon her by chance. She had unfortunately driven her car straight up to a mailbox and was forced to ditch the vehicle to walk the last four miles home cursing like a sailor as she did. Dawn was fast approaching and Beldhalgen had already cleared past over five college dorms and a good dozen rows of homes, poking his into each female’s bedroom window only to pull away in distaste; didn’t the Humans have anyone that could catch his eye? Or was it that all Humans were ugly when they slept? It wasn’t until the short hand of the clock chimed four when the Sire found his ears twitching to the sound of someone’s footsteps and whirled around only to brutally slam into a girl. She screamed and her foot slipped, body pitching backwards as her slender form began the twisting fall down onto the hard gravel. Instincts forced his arms to take action. His long arms shot out; fingers dug into her camisole. Finding his grip, he wretched her back up. The Sire’s left arm darted to the small of her back, the tips of his fingers pushing firmly against it causing her to automatically arch her vertebrae, forcing her body to fall back against his other arm. The demon stared and her, startlingly fascinated with the blush of her hair; a soft, gentle color of amber that turned a lovely shade of reddish brown when light struck.
He wanted her. It was without a doubt, an end to his forever wandering. It also was an obvious thing with his pants riding on a painful strain against the fabric. Something in his mind clicked and he swept her into his arms,
“Relax,” was all he said before his jaws cracked open and the Sire dove to latch his fangs now gaping and swollen into the cusps of her bare shoulder, his sharp fangs ripping through the thin fabric. She screamed and went limp. It was all he needed before turning toward the rapidly fading moon; the portal, and escaped back into his own Dimension with seconds to spare.
The Sire kept her barricaded protection for two years. The first half of that year, he locked her away in his room in fear of her escaping. However, little vixen refused to be caged and made her rebellion physically clear. She battered at the stone walls, blasted chairs into smithereens at the door, and clawed at the windows barred like a prison. She refused to eat, rather throwing the food angrily onto the floor and curled on the floor with her hair in disarray to sob when all her efforts proved futile. Beldhalgen slept in the guest room next door. He couldn’t bear to sleep with her, couldn’t bear to do anything but look at her through his scrying, grimacing as she cried. He didn’t know if he could take this much longer. Twice he had caught her with a fork going for her own throat and more than once, every time he came in, she’d lunged at him, fingers stretched out to scratch him, strangle him and he evaded her. He stopped coming after a month of trying to tame her. It was obvious that he’d have to wait until her mind returned from its shattered realization.
Ember- he had finally managed to wrestle her name out of her after countless days of interrogation - stayed in his room for six months until her mind gradually accepted the fact that whoever kidnapped her hadn’t had any plans to make a meal of her. She had lost weight; her cheeks were rapidly losing their color and her once cheerful and vibrant aura dulled and vanished altogether leaving only an empty husk of her former self. It was only until her movements became sluggish and her body groaned whenever she tried to rise from the floor where she lay that she realized she didn’t have much time left before her body couldn’t support her any longer. She didn’t have the strength to cry let alone open her eyes; weeks of crying had emptied the last drops of moisture in her body. She was weak, malnourished, and on the brink of demise. Beldhalgen found her one day, collapsed beside the door in faint and frantically ordered a multitude of physicians within a fifty-mile radius to come without delay. Ember was losing to death and he knew it. It was also first time that the Sire tasted horror, fear; the thing bit at him, gnawed terror into his heart and dug a pit filling it with sentiments of dread. Her condition was bad, very bad; the poor thing’s life was ebbing toward death’s grip. He was useless at that point. It was the first time when Beldhalgen finally lost it. He was completely frantic, if anything he longed to see the minx’s hair catch the sun’s rays again and laugh at the curses spouting off of her lips, the bright, lively eyes that widened in shock when she first met him. He used his authority, his power, his might drawn upon himself and snarled to the nearest demon,
“The day she dies will be the day your head and all your deplorable staff’s heads join her.” His voice was terrible, thundering with his fury. Beldhalgen had never once used his words in such a way that it came out as an unquestionable order. He did not believe in ruling with fear. Such things brought nothing but doom to one’s kingdom. Nevertheless he had done it, commanded them to save her, costs be damned. The Sire knew, for the first time in his life, had been slapped with the apprehension that not money – not even his entire dimension – could not buy back a life.
For the first time, he found a rival worthy of his fear.
For the first time, the Sire felt threatened.