“Are you angry with me?” Vincent asked, when they reached the house. She’d been quiet the whole way home. Shaking her head she tried desperately to understand, he could help him. One tiny little thing and her husband could make it all go away. “Please try to understand” he urged. “It’s not our way”
“You’ve helped others” she reasoned, “You said yourself that war was coming, the hunters are not going to stay quiet for long. Don’t you think my father could help?”
“Anya it’s not that simple”
“Kindred politics!” she sighed, she was gradually learning that was not as powerful as she’d once thought. Like mortal kings they played games of knights and bishops and while the baron was a prince… or something like that. He was not in full control of his barony.
She didn’t hate him, she did not have the strength too but she wanted him to put her first. Save her father and his estate and make things better. Wasn’t that what a husband was supposed to do?
“Siren was more powerful than me, she had more influence and that allowed her more freedom than I possess. I have the court of souls breathing down my neck and Isabelle would like nothing more than to strip me of this fief.
“No one need know” she reasoned.
“They would know, perhaps if we’d have gotten to him before the doctors… then perhaps things would be different, but too many people know he’s dying”
“Doctors can be wrong; perhaps that doctor was simply wrong”
“Anya I know this is difficult” he soothed, “Your father is an old man, he’s had a good life”
“He’s not ready to die” she sobbed, suddenly unable to contain her frustration.
“I understand it seems that way” he reasoned, “but I believe Orrick is more ready than you think”
“Don’t try and reason this!” she argued, “This is not just about my father, the girls the estate … Emily is out of control with grief already, she can’t stand to lose her father”
“I wish a could help” he soothed, “but I simply can’t”
“Wont” she retorted, “Let’s be clear you won’t”
“Anya please… let’s not drive this between us?”
“Then do something about it” she urged, opening the door to the carriage and climbing out. The first few rays of sunlight already warming the horizon. “Go to bed” she snapped “We shall discuss it later… just know that if my father dies, I shall never forgive you”
Storming into the house she shook with fear and anger both in equal measures, the more she learned the more Kindred society seemed locked in its own politics’ than her own.
Well she wasn’t going to stand idly by and let her father die, the Baron was NOT the only kindred in the house.
Speaking to Allard was pointless, he would as always refer her back to Vincent. Telling her that if the Baron wouldn’t help her, then neither could he. Isabel wasn’t present at least she wasn’t letting it be known if she was. Arabella was as usual the best option but she was running things at Siren’s castle … leaving her only option as the kindred in the cellar so heading past the kitchens she got herself a small jar and a sharp knife.
‘Training’ the fledglings was proving to be a difficult task, more instinct than thought the Baron was finding the Capadocian blood a challenge. He was not their sire and though he could control them with the mearest look. Teaching them the ways of their new existence was an entirely different matter. Three had already killed each other and those that remained seemed unresponsive… all except for one. The girl called Erin she Vincent said had as much potential as any with her blood.
Anya didn’t really understand, Erin’s blood was thin or something… her potential was capped at what Vincent referred to as a ‘cruel’ level. He’d eluded to knowing away of strengthening her but he’d also revealed is was a controversial and somewhat frowned upon act.
Erin had now been moved, she still slept in the cellar but she no-longer slept in a cell. Hurrying though the maze of secret passages Anya quickly found the young girls room. She knocked and waited a moment, hearing no answer she turned the handle. Finding Erin on the bed, she cursed Erin had already succumbed to the lure of sleep and now appeared as dead. It as an unsettling sight and one she would never get used to.
She contemplated bleeding the girl, but Vincent had warned her about the hunger fledglings felt and concerned that Erin might wake hungry she knew bad things could happen.
Leaving her with only one choice she headed back towards the cells. All was quiet, she peered into the cell with the sleeping kindred she didn’t fancy being in there if they woke so instead she pulled the key off its hook and headed to the cell where the Kindred called Risa slept.
Vincent had explained he’d left Risa in the state Kindred entered just before death. It was the same state Siren current existed in, a sleeping state and one in which a Kindred could not wake without the help of blood from an older kindred or after many years had passed.
Opening the cell she softly tiptoed inside, settling the jar down on the bed she got out the knife.
For all intents and purposes Risa appeared dead. The only clue to her real existence was in the fact that her corpse did not rot. She had been cleaned and dressed but her body still bore the scar’s of Vincents feeding frenzy and Anya found it difficult not to vomit her dinner.
Her hand shook as she took the blade, laying it down on Risa’s skin. She knew she could not hurt her but there was something morbid about what she was trying to do. Pressing down with the blade on the kindred’s wrist she flinched as her knife cut into the flesh with a sickening sound. She’d imagined it would be something like butchering an animal, but it was not… the clothes the hair it made it all too difficult to compare the woman to an animal.
“I just need a little blood” she promised “just a little” but as the knife cut down it all to clear the sleeping kindred wasn’t going to bleed easily. Panic taking her she cut deeper. “Please” she begged “just a little” but there was nothing, not even a drop.
Tear’s rolling down her face she didn’t know what to do, she cut deeper and deeper until suddenly she hit something hard. ‘bone’ she realised.
“We don’t bleed” a voice explained, making her leap with fright as she’d not heard anyone come in behind her. Spinning she dropped the knife with a clatter to find the Baron standing in the doorway. “Our heart doesn’t beat, therefore blood does not flow” he explained, “that to say it wouldn’t if she even had any. She sleeps because she’s been completely drained, it doesn’t matter how deep you cut you won’t find any blood in her”
“I can’t let him die” she whimpered, feeling defeated.
“I know” he nodded, wandering towards her. Biting into his own wrist as he went. Scooping up the jar as he reached her he let a few drops of his own blood drip into the container. “I’m going to get into trouble for this” he warned. “We are already being scrutinised for how many humans in the kingdom know about it. So we must live with whatever the consequences are, do you understand?”
“Yes, I understand” she sniffed gratefully taking the jar off him.
“Then go and save your father” he smiled.
“Thank you” she nodded.