Allard, sat in the lounge where the Hamdun’s had gathered, wearing Vincent’s image he was almost indistinguishable from the real Baron Dacre. Having Ghouls with the ability to impersonate their masters was an old vampire trick and Allard had served as Vincent’s double for almost 150 years.
Life as a ghoul had it’s perks he was still able to raise a family and Allard had over the years had three wives, fifteen children, forty grandchildren and so far sixtytwo great grandchildren even though he himself still appeared to be a man in his 20’s.
If he was lucky Vincent would make him, his next Childe by turning him into one of them and that was generally what all Ghouls hoped for true immortality without the dependence on their masters blood. But until then he lived in relative luxury at Vincent’s home, acting as lord of the manor during the daylight hours.
Sitting he watched the interactions, his job was to mostly listen and conduct small talk Siren had been perfectly clear that none of the doubles should make any rash decisions or do anything that may jeopardise her plans. Still over the years he’d gotten to know his master well and he knew how much her current plan unsettled him, not to say he wasn’t on board with the final result but he wasn’t entirely happy with the method.
Peter had recovered well with a little vampiric assistance, Vincent had been cautious not to use his own blood in the deal but had instead used a tactic he own employed, getting Arabella to turn a human criminal sentenced to death, draining his blood into vials before Killing it. This process meant the blood he fed to Peter was no-where near as potent as his own.
Still the vain hope that Peter would not notice the added benefits of ghouling had fallen short, Peter had clearly noticed the added strength and speed conferred by Arabella’s watered down blood.
“Tell him I accept” Peter grinned at Daniel’s steward who had just informed him off Christopher’s challenge.
“Now Peter, Don’t be hasty” Gabriel urged “you’ve never been much of a swordsman and Christopher is a trained solider”
“Nonsence.. I have a feeling I’m about to get very lucky”
Allard had a sinking feeling, Vincent would not be amused if Peter killed Christopher. Though it was unlikely he’d gained enough strength and speed to reveal it as something un-natural, it was almost certainly enough to give him an unfair advantage, not to mention Peter still most likely had the ability to heal from almost any wound
He also knew his master despised Peter and was hoping to forge friendships with the Vaux’s. “I would recommend against it” Allard added “It seems an awful lot of bother over a … “ whore.. thats what peter would expect to hear but whore was almost certainly never a word that would come from his masters mouth “A young girl… why risk injury?”
Peter laughed “Nonsense I feel as strong as an Ox…. “
“Peter I insist you re-think this?” Gabriel begged showing concern for his brother “I don’t wish to see you hurt, it’s madness to put yourself at risk the steward said that Daniel would not force it”
“It’s not a risk” Peter grinned “I’ll crush him, serve the damn fool right”
Allard could feel the panic rising he had to find away of stopping Peter taking this duel, Vincent could easily ‘change his mind’ but Allard was not Vincent and Allard did not have that ability his only gift was that of hiding and altering his appearance, he wasn’t old enough nor powerful enough for anything else.
He considered for a minute going and trying to wake his master but the continuing strain of pretending to be human had taken it’s toll on all of the vampires and Vincent was in no fit state to be woken. In fact waking Vincent at this time would almost certainly prove lethal for someone as the old vampire had not fed several days while burning blood at a elevated rate to keep up their charade.
Allard weighed up the options, he knew a duel was not in Siren’s plan’s but at the same time he knew it would not concern her too much as long as Peter won. In-fact if anything it would further secure Daniels position on the throne. Vincent however was a different kettle of fish and he’d lived though his guilt before.