Cross To Bear (Book 1)

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|15| Decisions

Amari POV

I laid down, looking at the ceiling. The little angels painted, making me frown. Why were they naked?

Groaning, I close my eyes again. It was past midnight, and I could not fall asleep. After my date with Lorcan, my mind has been going to the offer he made to be a queen. I like how the idea of becoming stronger sounded, but being a queen? How could I if I only had two years left? It was useless in trying to be something if I was going to die soon.

Sighing, I smile weakly. It’s sad to know I only had two more years. My heart yearned to live, but this curse will soon start taking a toll on my body.

I remember when my father told me of the curse as I grew up. He mentioned once my time is close, I would start to have side effects. With a weak body, a loss of memory, I would lose my ability to walk and talk. Just remembering it scared me. I didn’t want that.

Feeling tears in my eyes, I bite my lip. Why was this happening to me? Turning over, I stare at the mirror. A girl with blue eyes and brown chocolate hair. A delicate yet pale face with tiny freckles covering my cheeks and nose. Small pink lips and a scarred body. I smile weakly. Who would love me like this?

Deciding it was enough, I got off the bed. Grabbing a long wool sweater, I went for a walk. Carefully, I open the bedroom door. No one was around. Walking down the hallway, I stop and look at a dark hallway. Lorcan showed me an enormous library like the one in Maximus palace. Curious to go back, I head down the hall.

This place differed from Maximus’ palace. It wasn’t scary at all, and it was well lit. Smiling, I wandered until I finally reached the white doors. Looking from side to side, I open the door. Peeking in, I see it’s empty, or so I thought. After giving a glance around, I grabbed a book and headed towards the fireplace. Big and comfy sofas with blankets and pillows awaited me. Skipping, I jump and sink on the comfortable couch.

Smiling, I open my book. Blue and dusty cover that read ‘The Heir of My Heart.’ Excited to read it, I started opening it when I saw something pass by. Stopping for a second, I frown. What was that? Seeing that there was no one, I shrug my shoulders and lower my eyes back to the old yellow pages.

I was already halfway through the story when I felt someone staring at me. I didn’t want to look up, but it was bothering me. Was someone with me?

Groaning, I shut the book.

“Can you stop being a creep!” I retorted. Scoffing, the person with black hair walks out from behind a shelf.

“Calling me a creep is too much,” the man said as he walked up to me and sat down on the same sofa. Lifting my eyebrow, I stare at him. It was Lorcan’s brother. The one who I bumped into earlier.

“Alastair, was it?” I said, frowning.

“It seems my brother mentioned my name?” Alastair said, scoffing loudly. I rolled my eyes as he opened a book and started reading it. Observing him, I noticed a red long sleeve shirt with ruffles that was way too loose for him. Some black silk pants, and he was barefoot. His hair was tied in a ponytail which showed his chiseled jaw. Was he also a vampire seeker?

“Yes I am,” Alastair said, smirking.

“What?” I asked, frowning. Did he just answer my question?

Stopping his reading, he looks at me between his lashes. A smirk spread on his face as he closed the book.

“I can read minds, that’s my gift,” Alastair said, smirking. Eyes wide, I stare at him. There was this scary feeling coming of him.

Lowering his eyes to my chest, he frowns.

“Small, huh?” Alastair mumbled, making me frown.

“Excuse me?” I asked, not understanding.

“I mean the chest,” Alastair pointed out.

“What’s with you people!” I retorted, throwing him the book I had. Alistair rolled his eyes as he blocked the book with his arm.

“What hit a nerve?” Alastair answered back, “Let me guess Lorcan told you the same?”

“I did,” I heard a voice say, laughing. Lorcan walked out of the shadows as he took a seat opposite of us. His long silver hair is a complete mess on his face. “Dear, we like them big. Just like you woman like them big and thick.”

“Gross,” I said, leaning on the sofa with my arm crossed.

“What? it’s true. We are addicted to sex, so it’s normal we like a woman with a big breast and a fine ass,” Lorcan said, laughing. Alastair just chuckled. Scoffing, I look away. Were they serious? Feeling conscious of myself, I lower my eyes.

“Brothers, please behave!” a cheerful voice said out of nowhere. I heard Alastair curse as he pinched his nose. Standing near a shelf was a woman with long black hair. She grabbed a book from the romance section. Looking my way, she smiled sweetly. I couldn’t see her face well because it was dark, but as she approached me smiling, I looked at her. With my mouth wide open, I stare at her. She looked like a doll. Delicate yet seductive in a way. She had a thin waist, big breasts, and long legs. Her black hair complemented her white, pale face. But what captivated me the most were her eyes. They were unique. Two red eyes that looked like rubies glowed in the dark. She looked deadly—a perfect dangerous woman.

“Hi, it’s a pleasure to meet you, Amari. I’m Lilith. Lorcan and Alastair’s sister,” Lilith said smiling, “I apologize for my brother’s behavior,” she said as she slapped Alastair in the head. I bit down a laugh as I watched her. She looked sweet and friendly. Lorcan was right, and I might get along with her.

“So why are you all here?” I asked after introductions.

“Well, I was here before you arrived. Lorcan arrived a while ago, and well, I don’t know why she’s here,” Alastair explained.

“I arrived earlier than expected,” Lilith’s smiled, “No move, brother.”

Groaning, Alastair stood up. He looked somewhat annoyed by Lilith’s presence. Glancing his way, Lilith stares at him. She was glaring at him with thin lips. Her red lips gave away how angry she was. Looking down, Alastair walked away. Was she the oldest?

“Now let me see,” Lilith said, caressing my face, “You’re quite the beauty,” she smiled softly, “Now I understand why Alastair feels flustered.”

Snapping his head, Alastair blushes. I stare at him in shock as a red blush spreads over his pale face.

Laughing, Lilith looked back at me. Her red eyes were staring intensely into mine.

“This is a good plan, brother,” Lilith suddenly said, making me frown. Lorcan stood up and walked over. Kneeling, he smiled as he caressed my other side of the face. I blush, feeling embarrassed. Why were they staring at me like that? “You see, brother Lorcan told me about the offer he made to you to become a strong queen. At first, I was hesitant, but now I understand. You can become a true queen.”

“Sorry, I’m not following,” I said, smiling nervously.

“Don’t you wish to become stronger, Amari?” Lorcan asked. I nodded, “Then agree to my offer. Everyone here will help you.”

“Help me?” I asked.

“Yes,” Lilith smiled, “Each of us will partake in a role. For example, I will teach you how to be a queen. Everything from beauty to mastering a speech. Lorcan will teach you sword fighting and more fighting arts. Alastair, there will make sure you know politics and all about the economy, and our baby brother who isn’t here but you will meet later will help you with something special.”

“Something special?” I mumble, confused.

Lilith smiled as Lorcan looked at her.

“Yes, he will teach you how to seduce a man,” Liliths said, smiling brightly.

“Excuse me?” I asked, shocked, “I think you’re getting it all wrong!” standing. I look at all of them. They looked honest, and their intentions were pure, but asking me to be a seductress was too much. I wasn’t even sure if it was a good idea to become a queen. “I don’t understand,” I said, pulling my hair. “You’ve been mentioning that I will become a queen, but I’m not married, and I have no one. So what makes you think I can become a queen? Don’t I need a king?”

Giggling, Lilith looked at Lorcan.

“Yes, and that’s where my brother comes in,” Lilith said, hugging Lorcan.

“Huh?” I stare at them.

“Lorcan will be your new fiance. Only if you accept the offer,” Lilith said, turning serious, “Don’t worry, this will only benefit both of you. Nothing more. I know you don’t love him.”

“Hey,” Lorcan grumbled, pushing Lilith away, “Respect, please.”

“Sorry, brother,” Lilith sighed, “But I know of your feelings for her, but I also know you respect her and,” she said, looking at me, “I know you won’t force her to accept you.”

I stare at her in shock. Lorcan didn’t mention this.

Glaring at him angrily, I walk away. So this was his plan all along?

Hearing him call my name, I walk out of the library. Catching up with me, Lorcan tries to stop me.

“Please listen, Amari,” Lorcan begged as he stood in front of me. I pushed him away.

“You lied to me?” I retorted.

“No, I didn’t!” Lorcan said as I walked away, “ALL I DID WAS TO BE HONEST WITH YOU. MY FEELINGS FOR YOU ARE REAL, BUT LIKE I SAID I WON’T FORCE YOU…” Lorcan mumbled as I stopped on the corner of the hallway. Breathing hard, I look over my shoulder. Lorcan smiled sadly. His shoulder slouched. “I just want you to be queen. Don’t you want revenge?”

“Revenge?” I said, turning around, “All I want is to live my life Lorcan. I don’t care for revenge!”

“But Amari…” Lorcan whispered. Shaking my head, I stop him.

“I just want a life, Lorcan,” I smiled sadly, “I’m tired of all the drama and torture and conflict and pain. I had enough…”

Lilith and Alastair had followed us. Lilith looked worried as she stared at me.

“Then why don’t you do it for a change? For yourself? Be stronger, Amari,” Lorcan said, not looking at me, “Become stronger by being a queen. Make everyone who belittles you speechless. Show them that you who have been through a lot can rise and become someone who they never expected.”

I sighed tiredly. Massaging my face, I curse.

“And marry you?” I said, annoyed.

“Only if you want to. But allow me to tell you something. If you marry me, you will do a lot. Not only will you be the queen of the seekers, but everyone will fear you.” Lorcan explained with thin lips.

“Why do you say that?” I asked, frowning at him. Lorcan glanced over his shoulders.

“Because no one can touch the queen of the seekers,” a voice said behind me. Jumping, I turn around. A person was standing behind me. But I couldn’t see him. The darkness covered his face and body. Only a silhouette was visible from afar. I could feel an oppressive aura coming from him. Moving backward, I shake. What was with this person? Feeling an arm around my waist, I lift my head. Lorcan was staring to the front. A small crease on his head as he protectively hugs me.

“Enough, Azriel, you are scaring her,” Lilith said with a stern voice. As I look over at her, I suddenly feel a presence. Looking back to the front, I gasp. A man with silver hair and eyes black as the night looked down at me. He was leaning close to my face.

“Azriel,” Lorcan whispered. My body started shaking as I looked at him. It was like he was devouring me with his eyes. This creepy feeling made its way to my heart. It was scaring me more. “Azriel!” Lorcan growled. Sighing, he moved back. He was tall, just like Alastair.

“Gosh, I was just testing,” Azriel grumbled as he rolled his eyes. His pitch-black eyes looked scary. If I had an ounce of sleep, now it was gone.

“Amari, this is our baby brother Azriel,” Lilith introduced as she moved next to me and patted my shoulders. “Azriel is quite special like Alastair,” she whispered in my ear, “But he won’t do you harm.”

Chuckling nervously, I looked at him.

“Why don’t we go to rest and continue this later?” Lorcan offered.

“Sleep?” I jump in. Do they think I could sleep after this?

“Yes, it’s late, and a lady needs to sleep,” Lilith said, pushing me. I looked over my shoulders. Lorcan was whispering something to Azriel as Alastair just smirked my way. He was a creep.

Once arriving at my bedroom. Lilith insisted on helping me get changed.

“I’m sorry if Azriel scared you,” Lilith smiled as she combed my hair. I peek at her through the mirror. “You see, Azriel has special gifts. As a seeker, he is one of the strongest.”

“He is?” I said curiously. Lilith just nodded. “I thought it was Lorcan.”

“No, it’s Azriel, but because he’s the youngest, they passed the role to Lorcan,” Lilith explained. “No, Amari, I want to ask you something.”

“What is it?” I asked while playing with my hands.

“Why are you so scared to accept our help?” Lilith asked. Tensing up, I chuckled lightly.

“I… I just want a normal life,” I said honestly. There was no reason for me to lie. Because that’s all I wanted, my life, my freedom.

“Then do it, but become a queen,” Lilith said.

I was having enough of the conversation. I stand up.

“Why do you insist!” I asked, “Why insist when you know I don’t want to?”

“Because... “Lilith mumbled as she looked at the floor, “Just trust me, please. I can’t tell you for now, but I can assure you we all will protect you. So please.”

“Stop insisting,” a voice said from the door. Snapping my head, I find Alastair standing with his arms crossed. He sighed as he walked in. When did he open the door?

“Can’t you see she doesn’t want to? So why push her?” Alastair said as he stood behind Lilith.

Shaking her head, Lilith left the room. I watch her walk away, disappearing into the dark hallway.

“You don’t know,” Alastair said. Annoyed by his presence, I scoff at him. “Amari.”

“Shut up!” I said, annoyed by him, “Just shut up!”

“I won’t,” Alastair said as he looked down at me. His hands on his pockets as his black raven hair made a curtain around his face. Leaning down, he locks eyes with me. “You’re quite the stubborn.”

“Fuck off!” I said, pushing him. Alastair barely moved as my tiny hands pushed him. Looking down, he raised his hand and gripped my wrists. “Let go!” I retorted. Struggling, I kicked him in his crotch. Cursing, he let’s go.

“Woman!” Alastair said, panting.

“Don’t fucking woman me. Now get out!” I ordered him.

Alastair growls as he stands straight. He was scrunching his nose.

“Don’t order me,” Alastair said, gripping my arm.

“Want to try me?” I hissed.

For a second, Alastair moved back. Staring at me expressionless, he laughs. “Fine, but come to training tomorrow.”

“What?” I said as he turned his back to me, “I didn’t agree!”

“I know,” Alastair smiled. It was a seductive smile that made my skin crawl deliciously. I gulp as I look at him. “Look down at your hand once you see, you will agree.” with that, he shut the door. Confused, I crook my head.

Turning back, I fix my nightgown and decide to get some sleep. Turning everything off, I see the sun rising. It was already dawn, and I had not gotten an inch of sleep. Grabbing the quilt, I lay down and stare at the naked angels.

“Sleep!” I said, sighing.

Raising my hand, I stare at it. Didn’t he say there was something? Confused, I flip my hand over, nothing. Doing the same thing over and over, I finally raise the other hand. A small gasp left my lips as I abruptly sat in bed.

“What’s this?” I mumble as I speechlessly watch my palm. In the middle of my hand was a red mark. Frowning, I bring it closer. I could barely distinguish it. “A rune?” I frown.

Realizing I had seen that rune before, I got off the bed and rushed out of the room. Running to Lorcan’s bedroom, I knock like crazy. I heard him curse something before opening the door. With a sleepy face and messy hair, Lorcan stared at me, confused.

“Why are you here?” Lorcan asked, looking down the hallway. “You know you only had to knock on the door inside the bedroom, right?”

“What’s this?” I said, putting my palm on his face. Lorcan moved his head back to see it.

Smiling, he looked at me, grabbing me by the arm and pulling me inside the bedroom. He shuts the door. Leaving the echoes of his door as the only evidence down the halls.

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