Eyes Cold Like Winter

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An Unforeseen Memory

“I’m… sorry!” Elise exclaimed as she turned and dashed off.

“Elise!” shouted Lucius as Elise disappeared through the crowd.

By the time Lucius got to the back of the crowd, Elise had already vanished. Damn it! He thought. Just where did she go? Hopefully she could not have gotten far. Lucius suddenly remembered Elise’s scent on his leather jacket. Using his vampire instincts, he quickly headed in the direction of her scent.

“Why am I worried about her?” he quietly wondered as he ran.

He managed to find Elise at the back of St. Hilda’s Catholic Church, in the car park. She was crouching down while clutching her head with her hands, fingers gripping the strands of her ash blonde hair. Her asthma inhaler was on the ground next to her feet. Did she almost have an asthma attack? Thought Lucius.

“Thank goodness I’ve found you!” he sighed with relief, “What in blazes was that reaction just now?! Why did you run off like that? You could’ve gotten lost, or even worse, kidnapped!”

“I… think… I’ve… just… remembered… something…” replied Elise quietly.

Lucius’ eyes widened in shock. Was it because of the car accident that caused her to recall something she had unknowingly long forgotten? He remembered Mr. Courbet telling him that Elise had lost her parents when she was barely two-years-old, thus having no knowledge of them. Kneeling down to be at her level, Lucius gently removed Elise’s hands from her head and cupped her cheeks.

“What was it you just remembered?” he asked.

“I was in the back of a car…” said Elise slowly. “I was… very young… The next thing I knew… a truck… collided… into the car… Then everything… turned black…”

“Perhaps it was something from the past?” suggested Lucius.

“I don’t know!” cried Elise, “I don’t know why I suddenly remembered something like that! All I remember is growing up at that orphanage!”

“Calm down Elise!” shouted Lucius, “Don’t over think it!”

“I can’t!” Elise shouted back, “I can’t get it out of my head! I’ve always wanted to know how I became on orphan, but that memory just now felt incredibly painful. The more I want to know, the more distressing it becomes!”

Lucius gritted his teeth in annoyance. Just shut up! Shut up! Was all he could think of right now. Without warning, he suddenly embraced Elise and pulled her clothes off her shoulders. Before she even had time to react, Lucius swiftly pierced the curve of her neck with his fangs.

As he hungrily gulped down her blood, he could vaguely hear Elise gasping. Was she in pain? Or was she in pleasure? He could not tell, nor did he care. Lucius plunged his fangs deeper into her neck as though to gratify her experience. When he felt Elise slumping in his arms, he finally stopped.

“Forgive me for attacking you like this,” he said quietly as he pulled out his fangs. “But this was the only way to calm you down. Sometimes, it’s better that the past remains forgotten.”

“What… do… you mean?” asked Elise weakly.

“Depending on the situation, bad memories are best left forgotten,” explained Lucius. “Based on what you’ve told me, I think you might have gotten involved in something traumatic when you were really young. You must’ve somehow repressed those memories as a coping mechanism, and eventually forgot them as you grew up.”

“But… why am… I… remembering them now?” questioned Elise.

“Don’t ask anymore,” said Lucius as he helped her up. “You will only end up hurting yourself. Let’s just go home.”

They did not say a word to each other during the bus ride. Halfway through the journey, Lucius felt Elise’s head suddenly resting on his shoulder. She had fallen asleep, most likely due to the loss of blood. As if by impulse, he slowly reached out and placed his arm around her shoulder. He gave her shoulder a slight squeeze as he held her while she slept.

She looks cute when she’s asleep. He thought to himself. It’ll be such a pity when I have to wake her. It was not long until the bus pulled up at their stop. Lucius was about to shake Elise, but stopped.

“I guess I’ll let you sleep longer,” sighed Lucius. “You’ve been through a lot today.”

He carefully picked up Elise, carrying her like a princess. Her body felt warm in his arms. Does she have a fever? Thought Lucius as he hiked up the hill back to his manor. However, her breathing was normal as she soundly slept.

Once inside, Lucius brought Elise to her room where he laid her down on the bed. Just as he got up to leave, he paused when he caught sight of Elise’s lips rather than his recent bite marks on her neck. Her lips looked really soft, and they were still tinted with her lip gloss. His heart began to pound as he felt himself climbing onto the mattress and towering over her.

The throbbing of his heart grew louder, and his cheeks were flushing red as he leaned towards her face. Just as his lips were inches from touching Elise’s, a vision of Genevieve suddenly flashed in his mind. This prompted Lucius to immediately pull away from Elise. Sitting on the edge of her bed, he clutched his head while wracked with guilt.

“What am I doing?” he quietly asked himself, “Have I gone mad?”

From their very first encounter, he had convinced himself that he was only interested in Elise due to her striking resemblance to his past lover. Why did his eyes glitter with desire for her? His only love should be Genevieve, but he appeared to be betraying her. Not wanting to contemplate on this matter any further, Lucius finally stood up and quietly left the room. He went to call Esmé to help Elise change out of her clothes and into her night dress.

Afterwards, Lucius decided to take his mind off everything by taking a shower. It was rare for him to be showering at this time of the day. Usually, he would go straight to the conservatory to make his tablets once he returned home from school, or after he had gone out. The warm water was soothing on his cool skin as he massaged the shampoo into his scalp with his hands and fingers.

As he watched the droplets of water run down his skin, Lucius could not help but remember how warm and soft Elise’s skin felt. His fingers tingled at the thought of it. Turning the shower tap off, Lucius exited the shower and grabbed his towel to dry himself. After getting dressed in some loungewear, Lucius found himself heading in the direction of Elise’s room.

“Why did I come to her room again?” he quietly wondered, “Am I really that worried about her?”

He suddenly remembered that his father had travelled into London this morning for a meeting with the NHS Board. Mr. Courbet would not be back until next week, and this was Lucius’ first time alone in the manor with Elise. For some reason, he was feeling a bit nervous. Was it because of what he tried to do to her earlier on? Would he be unable to control his carnal passion?

“Elise?” he called as he gently knocked on her door, “Are you awake yet?”

There was no answer.

“I’ll be coming in if you don’t mind,” he then said as he carefully opened the door. “Pardon the intrusion.”

Just as he entered her room, Elise stirred before gradually waking up. Lucius stifled his laughter when he saw how tangled her ash blonde hair had become from tossing and turning in bed.

“You finally woke up, huh?” he spoke.

“Umm…” groaned Elise, “How did I get here? And how did I change out of my clothes?”

“You don’t remember falling asleep on the bus ride back here?” asked Lucius as he ignored her questions.

“What?” she asked.

“It’s probably because of the shock of witnessing that car accident, almost having an asthma attack, and the fact that I drank your blood,” he told her. “You must’ve felt relieved once all that tension went away.”

“I see…” she replied quietly.

“So, how are you feeling?” Lucius then asked, “Your body felt a bit warm when I carried you all the way back to the manor.”

“You did what-” exclaimed Elise as she flushed with embarrassment. Before she could say anything else, Lucius interrupted her by gently placing his forehead against hers.

“You’re not warm anymore,” he told her as he pulled away after a few minutes. “Perhaps getting some rest made you feel better.”

Elise made an effort to get up, but Lucius stopped her by placing his hands onto her shoulders. He gently pushed her back down onto the bed.

“You don’t have to move,” he said. “Just keep resting. I’ll ask Esmé to bring dinner up to your room.”

“What about you?” asked Elise, “Have you and Mr. Courbet eaten yet?”

“I’ll have my dinner in my own room,” said Lucius. “Also, father had to go into London this morning for a meeting with the NHS board. He won’t be back until next week.”

“Does it mean it’ll be just us in this manor until then?” questioned Elise.

“What kind of question was that?” asked Lucius, “Don’t tell me you’re thinking weird things.”

“No…” said Elise bashfully, “It’s just that…” she began, but she could not find the exact words to describe her thoughts.

“No matter,” said Lucius as he turned to leave the room again. “I’m glad that you’re alright now. I just wanted to check on you.”

He then walked over to the door and just as he was about to leave, he paused and turned around. “Also, you don’t have to worry. I don’t plan to do anything to you unless you give me your consent.”

This caused Elise to burn up in agitation. Lucius gave a small chuckle as he closed the door behind him, not bothering to listen to Elise retaliate his claims. As he headed to the kitchen to request their dinners to be brought to their rooms, he recalled how dishevelled Elise looked when she tried to sit up in bed.

Her shoulders were exposed in such an unladylike manner. He thought to himself. She should be careful with her appearance if I have to enter her room next time. In his eyes, Elise was too innocent and naïve. There was one more thing he had not told her yet about his vampire nature.

“Drinking her blood is fine,” he said to himself. “So long as I don’t consume too much of it everyday. But I might lose control and deprive her of her purity one of these days. I don’t want to do that, and yet…”

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