They drove for a little over two hours. One of Gustavo’s vampires was at the wheel of the luxury vehicle. Khryssa sat in the back of the car with Gabriel Gustavo. Gabriel tucked a curl back behind her ear and spoke in a low tone.
“You are very beautiful Khryssa. I think you will be a fine addition to my family. I will gift you with the joy of immortality soon. Perhaps I shall even make you my wife.”
She gave the vampire a look of distaste. “I will never be your anything. If you remember correctly I am already married.” The words dripped from her lips like acid.
“If you wish for the survival of your husband and child dear Khryssa, you will be everything that I ask of you.”
Turning violently in the seat Khryssa slapped him as hard as she possibly could. Gabriel caught her wrist and brought it to his lips. Kissing the delicate pulse point, he smiled.
“I had heard that you are a quite the willful one. It will be my pleasure to tame you.”
Khryssa pulled her wrist free from his grip, Gustavo did not attempt to stop her. Khryssa turned away and watched the passing scenery outside the window. Gabriel continued to touch her. Short strokes started along the nape of her neck, only to trail his fingertips down her spine.
“When you finally realize that you belong to me now, you will welcome these gestures of affection.”
“Somehow I truly doubt it.”
“Jacques, take us to A La Morte Subite. I believe that our lovely companion needs a drink to settle her nerves and a bite to eat.” He emphasized bite.
Khryssa frowned at the name of the restaurant. Sudden Death. How apropos, I wonder if I could be lucky enough to achieve such a thing as a sudden death, she thought. The other vampire calling his creator ‘father’ was enough to make her visibly shudder.
“I am not hungry.” In truth, it was more than not being hungry, she felt ill.
“You must eat my beautiful bride to be. You need to keep up your strength for me.”
Khryssa said nothing. Anything she possibly could say would require him to comment. The last thing she wanted was to start a dialogue with this man. They were entering the city. Her gaze turned questioning, then she realized where they were at. Brussels. The ride must have taken about two and a half hours then. Oh Xavier! I am sorry. I am so very sorry. Khryssa apologized to her husband over and over again silently.
The car came to a stop and Gabriel paused to help her out. Noting that this was not a restaurant, but rather a pub, she gave the man props. Xavier would have done the same thing, if he decided to be in public. It is in the evening, people have been drinking for a while. If I start a ruckus the patrons would be easier to make suggestions to and slower to respond. It is a win-win situation for him, she thought.
Khryssa knew she could not out run them. She also realized if she did anything out of the ordinary that there was a chance that Xavier and Andon could be harmed. She wasn’t willing to take the risk. Gabriel’s hands fluttered across her full breasts. Raising her head, she gave him a murderous look. He paused to unbutton a few buttons on the white raw silk blouse. Parting the material with fingertips, he exposed far too much of her cleavage.
“Much better Khryssa, I can feast my eyes upon you before you succumb to my touch. Shall we?” He offered an arm to her.
“If I refuse?”
“I will make it just that more difficult for you. And smile Khryssa, let’s not have you looking like a prisoner.”
Reluctantly she took his arm. It was all she could do not to dig her nails into his bicep. Schooling her face into a neutral expression, they strolled into the bar with Jacques following close behind.
Xavier did the only thing that he could think of; he went to the House of Helsing. Holding his sleeping son protectively, he knocked on the door. Benedict answered the door. Seeing the vampire standing on the doorstep, he looked completely surprised.
“UNCLE HENRIK!!!” Max yelled for his guardian.
Henrik Helsing came down the steps at a hurried pace. “What is it Benedict?” Stepping towards the door he saw that it was Harcard. “What are you doing here Harcard?”Henrik was still angered by his disappearance and how he had left Khryssa alone.
Holding Andon against his shoulder, Xavier appeared out of sorts. “Helsing please, may I come in?”
Henrik knew that Harcard could just enter if he wished. The vampire had been invited in with Khryssa ages ago. He had never seen Harcard look so agitated. Henrik’s curiosity piqued. Stepping to the side and pulling Benedict with him, Henrik queried. “What has happened?”
Xavier swept past the man and the boy and into the parlor. Laying the sleeping Andon down, he turned to speak. “Can you get in touch with Christoph or Tess? I need someone to watch my son. They need to be-“He paused, searching for the word. “knowledgeable.”
Henrik was puzzled. What was Dracula asking of this family. He had already taken so much from them. “Ben, Harcard and I need to speak privately.”
“I know you do not believe me Helsing.” Xavier began to pace. His normally stoic appearance crumbling. “I love Khryssa. I have told you before, that I would give up my immortality to spend just one more day with her. Thus far, she has no desire to become like me. I have not even broached the subject. Nor will I. I want her to be happy. I need her more than I need anything else in this world.” The words poured quickly from Xavier’s lips. He spoke with a rushed, angry pace.
“What is this all about Harcard?”
“Khryssa has been taken from me. She went willingly in order to protect our son. It is Gabriel Gustavo that has taken her. I know they are not that far. I can feel her vibrancy rush over my skin. I cannot do this alone. Helsing, I need your help.”
“YOU LET HER BE KIDNAPPED?” Henrik exploded at the vampire. “How could you?” He spat. “How could you do this to her? She trusted you Harcard!”
“Gustavo had his people take Andon hostage. They would have killed our son if Khryssa did not go with him. She went with him while I got our son back.”
Henrik Helsing began packing a bag of his vampire killing tools. Throwing the bag on his desk, he picked up the phone. Dialing the older children’s number, he got Tess.
“Uncle Henrik what a surprise! Have dinner plans changed for this weekend?”
“I need you and Christoph to come over right away Tess. This is important.”
“What is wrong Uncle Henrik?”
“I rather not say over the phone, just please hurry”
“Yes Uncle Henrik, we will be there shortly.”
Hanging up, Henrik checked on Benedict and then turned to his vampiric guest. “What do you have in mind Harcard?”
“There will be many deaths tonight.” Xavier’s eyes blazed with an intense hatred. “Then I will take my wife and son home.”
Right as he had spoken Christoph and Tes walked in the door.
“Holy shit! What is Harcard doing here?” Christoph exclaimed in surprise.
Henrik turned to his nephew and spoke quietly. “Christoph, Tess something has happened. Khryssa is in grave danger. I need the two of you along with Ben to stay here and keep an eye on Andon. Do not let anyone into the house unless it is me or Harcard. Do not extend an invitation to anyone at all, including us. Do you understand?”
The pair spoke in unison. “Yes Uncle Henrik!”
“Let’s go Harcard; we have to get my great-grandaughter back.” Henrik started for the door with Xavier Harcard at his heels. They left together, quickly.
“You are not making me very happy my dear.” Gabriel Gustavo spoke with a low growl to his captive.
“It is not my job to make you happy.” Khryssa growled right back at him.
“It is now. You did not touch your dinner, sweet Khryssa. How are you going to sustain yourself with my appetite?”
Turning her head, Khryssa’s dark eyes narrowed down to slits at the sight of the man. Her lip curled in contempt. “I would rather die.”
Pretending to be obedient, she picked up her water glass and took a sip. Slamming the glass down onto the table it shattered in her hand. The glass shards cut the palm of her hand. Squeezing her hand into a fist she let the blood drip onto the tabletop.
“That could be arranged my dear.” He glared at Khryssa with anger and desire. The scent of her blood was incredible. He ran a finger across her bleeding hand. Drawing the finger to his lips, he tasted the sweet wine of her blood.
Gabriel whispered softly in Khryssa’s ear. “You are delicious.” Clapping his hands together, he spoke once more.“Let us go. We shall be staying at my private quarters for the night. Tomorrow we will be returning to Brazil.” Snapping off something in Portuguese to Jacques, he rose from his chair.
Khryssa knew enough Portuguese to understand what he said. It was just an order to bring the car around. Gabriel slipped his arm through his captive’s; escorting her out of the bar. She left a trail of blood in her wake. It was a rash idea to do that. She hoped that with the scent of her blood on the wind it might draw Xavier to her just that much quicker. The drive took perhaps twenty minutes. They were perhaps 10 km outside of Brussels. Arriving at the Villa Beethoven, Khryssa was escorted by several of Gabriel Gustavo’s men.
“Good god! Give me room please; you are all making me claustrophobic!” She shouted at her captors.
Gabriel nodded, allowing the men to pull back slightly. “I believe that will be your last outburst Khryssa.” He scolded her.
“Hmpf.” Was her only reply.
Upon entering the villa, the group of men left her alone with Gabriel. It was he that led her into a bedroom. “This shall be your room for the night Khryssa. Perhaps if you show some more appreciation, it shall be our room.”
“Don’t count on it.” Her voice was frosty.
“Then it shall become the room of your demise.” He moved closer to her. Lips pressing to her sweet ones, Gabriel kissed her with determination. Khryssa did not respond. Her first instinct was to sink her teeth into his flesh. Because of Xavier, she knew better. She did not want this man’s blood in her mouth. Ever. So she stood there, immobile.
“You are a determined woman Khryssa Harcard. Dracula was a lucky man. Alas, his loss is my gain.” Gabriel traced a nail down between her breasts. Stopping when it hit the first fastened button, he pressed downwards to snap the remaining buttons away. His hands travelled across her warm skin. Caressing every inch that he could reach, Gabriel’s hands circled her waist.
“You are going to force your will upon me Gustavo?”
He purred in her ear, tasting the soft curve with his lips. Trying to whisper into her mind and bring her to him by planting thoughts of desire there, Gabriel pulled back when he realized it was not working. He was not pleased with this new finding. “What has Dracula done to you my beautiful Khryssa? You are not taking my suggestions.”
“He has done nothing to me. Perhaps I am just simply too intelligent for your mind games?” She smirked.
Gabriel backhanded her. Khryssa’s head swung to the side violently. She could taste her own blood. “You shall never speak to me in such a tone!” He yelled at her.
“Get used to it Gustavo.” She turned to walk away.
He grabbed in an instant. Swinging her back around to face him, Gabriel ripped apart the remaining clothing with his bare hands. He left her standing there in just the scanty underthings that she had put on after the night of romance with Xavier. Khryssa made no move to cover up. She simply stared at the vampire. Fury had left her cold.
“You will do well to remember your station Khryssa.”
“My station?” She laughed bitterly. “I am the wife of Dracula; you, Gabriel Gustavo, are beneath my station.” She was baiting him, on purpose. The more time that passed the better. If she was lucky, Xavier had the time to secure Andon and try to find her.
Gabriel backhanded her again. This time it was much harder. Khryssa was seeing stars flash before her eyes. He pushed her back against the dresser. His body forcing her legs apart. She struggled with the vampire. Trying to close her thighs and keep him away, Gabriel Gustavo just forced himself closer to her.
“That is much better. You should learn to cooperate with me. Especially this is your last night on earth as human.” With that, he turned and left the room. The door was locked with his departure.
Rubbing her jaw, Khryssa scowled. Pushing back from the desk, she went to the shower room. She was searching for something to cover up with. No robe, not that it surprised her, but there were not even a single towel that could be used. Damnit, she cursed to herself. Combing every inch of the room and checking the windows, Khryssa looked for a way out. There wasn’t any. Taking a seat at a small service desk, Khryssa drew her knees to her chest. Looking out the window, she wondered what was going to happen next.
Time passed slowly. With the unrest that filled her mind, she was unable to gauge how long had passed. The door clicked and then opened. Gabriel walked into the room looking well rested and well fed. He wore nothing but a black robe and a smile. “Good evening again my pet.”
Pet? Khryssa gave him a hateful stare. How demeaning she thought. Once more, she spoke not a word. Turning back to the window to stare out into the night and ignoring the vampire in the room. Gabriel approached her. His fingers lifted to tangle in her curling locks. His lips hovered near the delicate line of Khryssa’s shoulder.
“Do you have any idea how your scent tantalizes our kind? Do you have any idea what you do to us? You are unique Khryssa Harcard. No wonder Dracula chose you for his own. You are more fragrant than the finest of Parisian perfumes. I cannot wait to feast upon your blood and your body.”
“You swear upon your immortality Gabriel, if I surrender to you that you will leave my husband and my child alone? You will not allow anything or anyone to harm them?”
Gabriel kissed her skin. His lips lingered so very close to Khryssa porcelain throat. His hands captured the gentle curve of her shoulders and drew her near. “I swear upon my immortality. ‘Tis an interesting choice of words my pet, you know the immortal have nothing they value more than their immortality.”
“Just do what you wish as long as you leave them alone.”
Gabriel smiled. It would have appeared tender if Khryssa did not know the intent beneath it. Taking her hand, he led her over to the bed. Khryssa was laid down gently and with much care. She could feel Xavier nearby. It wasn’t near enough. Tears began sliding down her cheeks, spilling onto her throat. She said not a word when Gabriel climbed into the vast bed and began kissing her. She did not respond at all. In her heart Khryssa was already dead.
“You are quite unresponsive my cherished pet.”
Cherished now? Disgusting. “That was never part of our agreement.”
He laughed. “You are correct, perhaps you will join me in my desire soon enough.”
Gabriel pressed is weight upon her. Turning her head to the side, the tears kept coming soundlessly. Oh Xavier! Please know I love you. I love you more than anything in this world. Don’t let Andon forget that he had a mother than loved him. Don’t you forget how much I love you. I am your’s for eternity and even longer. The final word of her thoughts she felt fangs pierce her throat. Blood spilled messily down her skin. The room began to dim and Khryssa felt her heart rate decreasing.
Xavier was close. So very close. Less than a kilometer from where his wife lay dying. He turned to his arch nemesis and spoke with awe. “She reached out to me. I know where Khryssa is.” He was in shock. Telepathy did not work well with her, due to the unusual circumstances of her birth. He heard every word and felt her faltering heartbeat. Giving Henrik a quick guide to get him there, Xavier disappeared into the night.
Since the villa was not a private residence, there were no restrictions for Xavier to enter. He smiled with contempt. He thought that Gabriel Gustavo was a fool. Xavier took into consideration that this was possibly a trap. Yet, he did not care.
Upon entering the property Xavier slaughtered seven of the vampires that Gustavo had purposely left in case of Dracula's arrival. It was not a fair a fight. His rage was so great that the deaths of the other vampires did not even give pause to his steps. Xavier ripped the door away from its hinges. Two female vampires were stationed by the door. The women did not even see him enter before they spilled into piles of ash. Checking the rooms, he finally found the one with his beloved. Gustavo was across her, taking his fill of her blood. Wrenching the other vampire off of Khryssa, he spoke to the man.
“Never before will having killed someone given me so much pleasure.” Looking up at Gabriel Gustavo hanging in his hand, Xavier ripped the head off of the vampire first. He immediately plunged the stake into the other vampire’s chest. This little act was the ultimate in cruel. It allowed his enemy to see themselves being destroyed. The shriek of a dying vampire as old as Gustavo was filled the air. Xavier tossed the body away before it could even turn to ash. He dropped to his knees at the side of the bed. At first he thought his wife was dead, and then the nearly silent heartbeat came into focus.
He could sense the vampires that had once been of Gustavo’s family dying. He suspected that Helsing made his arrival. Pulling Khryssa into his arms and down onto the floor, Xavier bit through his own wrist. Trying to feed his beloved wife enough of his blood so that she would survive, he saw her looking at him.
Khryssa did not move nor could she speak. Her lips formed the words “I love you.”
Xavier felt her heartbeat stop. There was a final shudder and she stilled altogether. She was gone.
Xavier screamed out his pain and fury into the night and pulled the body of Khryssa to his chest. Henrik came running into the room with the scream and looked down at his niece.
Xavier Harcard rose from the floor. He held Khryssa’s body in his arms, where it hung limply. Walking out into the night with his beloved, he paid no attention to the grieving man he was leaving behind.