It was a hot night. The stars seemed to hang low in the sky, as if melting in the heat. My blood was boiling. I could barely contain my anger, but I swallowed it and put it away. This wasn't the time to fight. Now was the time to survive. Survive to fight another day.
I took a deep breath. It felt good to be outside again after being cooped up downstairs for two weeks. I could hear the sounds of owls in the forest, the soft paw steps of a fox, and a squirrel scurrying in the trees.
“Cousin,” I breathed. “I can't promise I won't come back for my crown and my queen.”
My crown. My throne. I itched to rip its head off.
Aric, standing next to me, was tense. I could see it. He was ready for my attack. I would not attack him so recklessly. Even though I was sure I could take him, I couldn't take on his whole family.
“I'd be disappointed if you didn't try,” he finally admitted.
I couldn't help but smile. We understood each other better than I had expected. I stared at the forest. The trees swayed slightly in the summer breeze.
“We're still young,” I murmured. “I wonder what this place will look like in a thousand years.”
When I am king.
“We'll have to wait and see,” Aric replied.
“Indeed we will,” I agreed, turning towards the forest.
“A hundred years of banishment,” he reminded me. “To be spent within your family. If you're seen by any other vampire, pureblood or turned, they have the right to kill you on sight.”
I nodded, knowing the terms of exile in our world.
“See you in a hundred years, then,” I winked at him before launching myself into the forest.