Kenny Everett’s famous character Captain Kremmen and his ditzy assistant, Carla.
Royalty reside here, obviously. A place for major events such as balls and parties. Heavily guarded as expected; you must request an appearance with the royal family in order to enter. Servants, knights, and other staff around the palace are the only exceptions.
A new series in which I introduce Ravina Direwolf; a ranger. The opening scene is the Castle of the King.
This is written with Moo, Kiri, Fu, & Nhal.
Moo: Today was peaceful for the kingdom so far. Zoura had woken to a dull light filling her room through the large windows, and the almost silent bustling of her maid. Her morning was dull and routine, as expected. Nobody was as heartfelt lately with the King’s illness. While Zoura couldn’t speak for her brother, she was definitely not in the mood to do her lectures or training, nor walk around the kingdom for her campaign. But she had to. Fixing herself with her armor as usual, she looked in the mirror. A woman who would take the throne in name of peace and prosperity. Sighing briefly, she put on a thin smile and made her way to the throne room, and would undoubtedly cross paths with her guardian there if not sooner. He had a habit if staying close, though she never minded; Zoura enjoyed the company in times like this, and it ensured her safety from the likes of her brother or other possible threats. Not that she was entirely sure of what he was doing or thinking anymore; the prince was just distant and…more withdrawn than she remembered. The tapping of her feet against the floors of the palace echoed down the halls, moving formally as she passed the staff who cared for her. It was too early for them to be dressing in black… Her eyes turned down while she finally entered the King’s current chambers, where she and her brother were called just a short while ago.
Fu: It was quiet, or so it had seemed for most. The sound of simultaneous feet clicking and clacking against the floor from outside the King’s chambers were heard for quite awhile , closing in and increasing with each sound until the door opened and a group of people appeared clad in black and red.
– They surrounded the entrance and had bowed their head as well as lowering their stance while one set of feet slowly made his or her way towards the front of the group from the back most end of the formation. Slowly the person made their way to the room and stood at the entrance with a melancholic expression upon the person’s face , at this point the person was seen. It was the Elder Prince ; Bleidd Pearce. He gave a quick glance at his younger sibling but that was all he had done before returning his attention to the reason why he was there in the first place. The air suddenly got alittle cold , the kind of cold where a person could feel a shiver go up their spine from some sort of sensation that was hard to truly tell why it happened or where it had came from. –
” Hello…….. Father . Is everything alright ? ”
Of course, normally most people wouldn’t expect for a presence to have already been in the room other than the king himself. And that sense of security was obviously going to stay unbroken by the male who was sitting the shadows of a corner not six feet from the door. Silent and foreboding, however invisible to the ones in the room as well. Satoru, one of the Senior Rangers of the kingdom’s own Ranger Corps, was sitting in the corner by request of the king himself; his mottled cloak making him invisible to even the keenest of eyes, including that of supernatural creatures surprisingly, so much so that even with their other senses supernatural creatures could not find them so long as they sat still; though the supernaturals can sense them, it normally confuses them by not being able to hear or see them, making them twice as deadly. It was one of the reasons the Rangers were looked at with fear by the general populace as Dark Arts wielders who make themselves invisible using such magics; even though the reality was that Rangers relied on nothing more than their own training. Satoru had been talking to him, the king, only seconds before Zoura had arrived. Satoru was watching because of the king’s request for him to do so, for Zoura’s safety more so than anything. The reason for Satoru having even been there at all, was actually because the king wanted him to keep an eye on Zoura and help keep her safe from the shadows. It was generally known, though not entirely official, that Satoru supported the princess and her rise. But he himself would never admit that officially unless given reason. Satoru’s face was hidden in shadow, but the hood over his head, and even as he sat there, he was ready to pull his bow from his back and fire should he must; and being behind the two heirs only made it easier for him to take Bleidd and Zoura by surprise if he must. Even if he’d rather avoid it entirely.
Moo: Zoura glanced up toward the armor with a small smile, feeling oddly out of sorts today. She was a little uneasy, questioning as to why the King would request her presence, as well as her brother’s. She had only just gotten into the room when she heard a distant marching of feet, which meant she had to move away from the door and further into the room. Zoura took her place beside her father, sitting on his rather large bed before taking his hand into her lap. The King had been a good father to her, though it seemed he had some darker nature within him as well. Some that reminded her of Bleidd. The King’s hand moved from hers and caressed her face, gently pushing back strands of hair before brushing his thumb across her cheek. Only then did she realize she had let herself tear up. She blinked several times now, clearing her throat as the marching grew louder. The King smiled while his hand rested in hers once again, before both turned their heads to look at none other than her brother. His greeting felt cold, and the presence he brought with him was unsettling. Zoura’s expression sobered until she was nearly frowning, gazing up at him. “…We were suppose to come unaccompanied, Bleidd.” She sighed briefly before she squeezed the King’s hand, hearing the man clad in armor greet the two of them. Zoura recognized his voice, leaving her to tilt her head slightly. But she gave him another thin smile and nodded her head slightly. “A pleasant morning.” Wasn’t that a lie? Here she sat on the edge of her father’s bed, who was so ill he looked as though he were skin and bones. Turning her attention back to the King, she looked over his aged face.
The King was silent for a time, having let his daughter speak her peace before he cleared his throat. It ended with some coughing into a cloth he happened to be holding in his free hand. “Send them off, Bleidd,” the man ordered in a deep and raspy voice. He somehow still had enough energy to sound like a King; powerful and demanding yet calm patient. “This matter is for us alone.”
” Oh ? Then why are there others in family business ? ”
– Was what Bleidd had said in reply to his younger Sister after Sera ; the Legion Captain rushed to his side and spoke in a extremely low tone but Bleidd had caught the entire thing. He would nod gently towards the person who announced themself by greeting before returning the gaze at his Sister. She was more understanding of the surroundings then him as she herself was born and understood the dark much more then he had , so he found her talents useful and valued . He was inept at that area , and would be in trouble if she wasn’t around but then again that was not his only lifeline whether he liked it or not . His arm had proven to give him a curse but also something much more useful . That ‘things’ guidance, awareness and intuition. Sera would then speak up and talk to the King outright her conditions. –
Sera:” Drop the others hidden here , and we’ll go. You don’t trust your own family that you need others monitoring the conversation Your Highness ? ”
Nhal: “Children please, hush. This is no time for conflict…” The massive dragon like creature strolled into the room with a surprising softness for his size, the only sounds were of the light decorative chaincoat he wore jingling softly and the old blade from his guard captain days tapping against the side of his leg. Moving up to the pair he gave a rather frightening grin as he looked towards Sera. “I apologize if I may sound rude captain… But I will have to ask you to leave Miss Sera…” He lifted his head and directed his snout towards a shadowy corner of the room before giving a short few sniffs in the direction. “That means you as well Mr. Matsuo…” He shifted his weight a little and tucked his hands behind his back, clasping them together comfortably. “I won’t be having either party misbehaving… Not today… Isn’t that right….” He turned his head towards both the prince and the princess. “…Lady Zoura, Lord Bleidd…”
“Hmm… normally, I could be rude here. However, I will not. I shall only state a simple fact.”
Satoru rose from his spot, seeming to actually shrug the shadows from his body as the effect was lost. One eye was perfectly visible within his hood, being a slightly lighter shade of brown that made them look fiery crimson. The visible eye of Satoru was calm, and honest as he prepared to speak once more, no matter if others had protested or not. Satoru was one of the more well-known Rangers, however that also meant he was infamous as well among civilians. Sera was good if she had known he was there, and the Dragonborn had nothing more than a good sense of smell to him.
“I am here under his, the King’s orders, and last I checked neither of you have the authority to trump him; in Sera’s case however, you are not even close to being high enough rank to set conditions to your king. Or me for that matter. You are a Captain, and you royal adviser. My authority is only trumped by direct members of the Royal Family. And as he is the one who has asked me to stay, stay I shall. Unless of course, his majesty would like for me to go.”
Satoru’s voice wasn’t snobbish, nor was it even insulting. It was calm, polite and factual. As he spoke, he used his hands to gesture at each member in the room that he had mentioned as he mentioned them, and he even added extra emphasis on the word direct when he mentioned members of the Royal Family. It was obvious he had no intentions of leaving. Not unless the king himself asked him to, as the king was the one who asked him to stay. Whether they would continue to argue, then that was up to them. However Satoru stayed where he was, and even as he stood it seemed that he was breaking down into the background because of his cloak. It was eerie in all honesty for those who weren’t Rangers. But then again, Sera wasn’t fazed herself when she had noticed him.
Zoura couldn’t believe the nerve of her brother–of this woman–while they stood in front of the King. Eddard looked tired and wary, his sunken eyes and withered face seemingly set in a grimace the entire duration of the meeting so far. The pain must have been immense and hard to endure, leaving Zoura to hold his hand more tightly as she gazed down at him. With the disrespect slowly filling the room, she thought she herself might burst. But it would help nothing, and she knew her father to be a patient man, so she would try her best to do the same. After a soft, raspy breath, the king’s dull eyes roamed from his son’s face to the woman’s, looking rather disdainful. Though as he would actually begin to speak, the final member who was expected to be present in the room finally made his appearance. None other than Soskaal. As usual, he was there to offer wise words while making himself clear; his presence naturally caused others to be wary despite his calm demeanor. Eddard exhaled, looking from the dragonborn to the ranger.
Zoura herself flinched when she saw movement from the corner of the room, turning to look at who had apparently been here the entire time. She wasn’t familiar with him, but she knew what he was. The fact that her father had requested his presence was slightly unsettling. More so than usual, her worried thoughts now turned to her brother. Did Eddard feel uneasy about his son as well? “Enough, Satoru…” His hand holding the cloth lifted, waving it slowly and quietly before letting it rest again. “You’re dismissed to the hall. It seems there is no getting around my friend Soskaal.” The King paused to offer the dragon an amused smile of sorts. “As sharp as ever.”
” Sera is the my voice. She knows how to vent out my thoughts so by my permission she is more then capable of speaking on my behalf. Now , Sera you and the others are free to go and moving on. What is the reason that we are gathered here today ? ”
– Bleidd would say to the Male who had spoken out about his orders . Following that moment the Prince would wave at his Second-in-command to acknowledge the Dragonborn and she would nod to him and walk out. She would be the last to leave as the small formation of knights would have went along and shuffled out first. It was only Bleidd left and he would walk closer towards his Father and Sister. He never showed it directly but he had been angered at the fact he had no magic aptitude but his younger Sister did. He didn’t understand why he was given the short end of the stick , but he didn’t wish for others to know but most did considering the events that had happened in earlier years. The only thing he has kept entirely secret was the existence of a certain something , and due to various reasons has worn lengthy clothing to cloak his inner problems , physically and mentally. He waited to see how things would play out , before returning to his own thoughts and going about his day.-
Nhal: Soskaal grinned again and gave a soft nod in the king’s direction. “I was simply born with a strong nose your grace… it is only natural.” Turning his head slightly he watched Sera leave the room, then looked back towards Satoru and gave a light smile and a subtle gesture in the same direction. Turning his head back towards king Eddard, his eye shifted towards Bleidd for a moment before he spoke softly. “I enjoy the dulcid tones of marching boots on the pavement as much as the next person young prince, but truly there was no reason to bring a whole unit with you when your father simply wishes to speak to you and your sister…” he then shifted again into a comfortable position and watched over the young siblings silently as he awaited their fathers words.
Satoru gave a small bow, placing his right hand in a hovering position just in front of his stomach before striding away without another word. It was the King’s will, emphasis on king’s. It didn’t matter if Sera was his voice, she wasn’t a high enough rank. The Ranger’s face was inscrutable, calm and grim as ever, however his thoughts were mostly focused on the fact that the Prince must be a coward in the form of words if he had to rely on his captain, and risk her head in the process, to speak out a condition or term to the king. The prince could be menacing and foreboding and every other word in the book, it didn’t make a lick of difference to Satoru. He’d seen it all, and probably more. The Ranger had been around a long time, and honestly the fact that the prince seemed off hadn’t eluded him. He was a Ranger, it was their job to know things. But he didn’t know very much about the Prince’s reason for being the way he was right now. Satoru rubbed the bottom of his chin, but didn’t really have a reason to fully understand as he didn’t have enough information. The Ranger was just standing there outside the door, not listening as that would have been rude regardless of his curiosity, thinking and going uncaring about the glances of suspicion and fear directed at him by the servants who passed. It was a normal phenomenon after all.
Having been ordered to remain outside in the cobble stoned courtyard with the horses, Ravina was growing restless. Dark whispers and looks from the King’s own guard were starting to annoy her, and as she stood stroking the neck of her horse, loud voices were heard to be coming from the inside of the building. It was hardly surprising with the vast amount of soldiers and nobles that were all now clamoring to make their way in to the Palace, as word of the King’s illness had spread across the realm. There was even a gathering of the clergy. Red hooded old goats carrying large books, and swinging burning incense as they waited their turn, like everyone else. Ravina regarded the priests as being nothing more than parasites, that used God’s word in order to have sway and power that should not have been afforded to them. Whispers also said that the King’s own children had returned to pay homage and listen to the King’s words. There had been rumors that both sought the crown if the King should pass on to the next. This was really of no consequence to the senior ranger. She knew her place in the world, and was proud to be part of the Ranger’s corp.
After another ten minutes of waiting, her patience was at it’s end. Handing the reigns to a stable hand, she drew up her hood and then fully armed, she started to make her way into the Castle proper. Her boots clinking as the spurs tapped the stone with every step that she took.
The corridors were lined with even more of the King’s guard. They really had gone all out with the beefed up security, but as they watched the ranger pass their ranks, they gave her the respect that she had duly earned from years of hard training. Her mottled cloak was like a badge of honor, and one she wore with pride.
The final turn and she could see Satoru up ahead, standing just outside the King’s chamber door. He gave those servants that passed him by a look of no caring, and if ever there was a time that Ravina wanted to smile it was now. She had to admit, he was an impressive man. She both admired and looked up to him, and he respected her for her duty and loyalty to the Corp.
“Let me guess. Ringside seats are only for the Royals?”
One thing about Ravina, she spoke her mind.
Name: Ravina Direwolf.
Personality: Bold, cunning, cold, serious, fierce, determined.
Status: Senior Ranger
Alliance: Unofficially Council of the Blue Crown
Faction: Ranger Corps
Weapon(s): An recurve longbow able to fire shots with more power than a normal longbow because of the recurve, able to rend through steel armor depending on distance; a single arming sword; her mottled cloak; Quiver of about 40 Arrows
Ways of the sword – Users are able to demonstrate a natural aptitude for the ways of the sword. The user is able to wield a sword with great proficiency in speed, power, and skill, allowing them to perform feats such as stopping and deflecting arrows, and even hold back their strength to deal damage to their foes without killing them. The user is also able to operate with little or no effort, deliver skillful strikes to weak points with great precision and cut only and exactly what they want. The users incredibly fast weapon control may allow them to bypass obstacles in order to cut their intended target.
Enhanced Marksmanship: Ravina can judge extremely long distances amazingly accurately, gauging the strength needed to launch a projectile, in order to hit a target accurately. If a target is moving Ravina can calculate the best method to hit the target. Her intense focus on whatever she’s shooting at allows her to shut out outside distractions. She can compensate for environmental factors that would normally throw off her aim like wind, air resistance, gravity, and radiant heat (which distorts the image of the target). This allows for her Enhanced Archery.
Ranger Physiology: This consists of enhanced agility, vision, adoptive muscle memory, construction of bows, construction of arrows, an intuitive ability to decide on the places that can deal the most damage to the body, control over using a bow to the point they can hit targets without killing and other such things. This also includes incredible dexterity and stealth. Rangers are watchful warriors who roam past the horizon to safeguard a region, a principle, or a way of life. Masters of bow and blade, rangers excel at hit-and-run assaults and can quickly and silently eliminate foes. Rangers lay superb ambushes and excel at avoiding danger. As a ranger, you possess almost supernaturally keen senses and a deep appreciation for untamed wilderness. With your knowledge of the natural world, you are able to track enemies through nearly any landscape, using the smallest clue to set your course, even sometimes the calls and songs of beasts and birds. Your severe demeanor promises a deadly conclusion to any enemy you hunt.
Mottled Cloak: a cloak colored so that it seems as though he is able to break himself down into the background and become invisible.
Sax knife is a 6 inch long knife with a 4 inch wide blade, making it top heavy enough that it can bust through heavy armor if you hit it enough
Throwing knife is a 6 inch long knife with a much thinner blade, with a balanced weight for throwing with great accuracy.
Enhanced Marksmanship: Ravina’s vision can be impaired, through smoke or other ways of impairing one’s vision.
Ranger Physiology: Ravina has a lower amount of defense in his stature, and cannot deal extremely heavy amounts of damage with swings of his sword as he is more speed based.
Mottled Cloak: This cloak can only make her invisible if he is sitting stock-still or is moving extremely slowly. Those at Ranger level can actually figure out where they are if they know what to look for, and where to look. Being stock-still makes this difficult even for Rangers, however slow movement can give the user away if up against another Ranger.
Personal Item(s): Long bow, mottled cloak, throwing knife, Sax knife.
Pet : Caw, a raven.
Background: Unlike most rangers who were actually male, Ravina was one that stood out from the rest. A daughter born to a high chieftain, who lost all his sons in battle, brought his daughter up much like you would a son. She had all the talent of her brothers, as she had spent her years watching and secretly training with them behind her father’s back. It was not until he lost all his sons that he realized just how capable Ravina was. Though she aspired to become part of the King’s guard, she was laughed at when she turned up for enlisting. Determined that she would once day realize her dream, she took her father’s weapons and went on the road in search of a place that she truly belonged. It was by chance that she came upon Satoru, who was himself training to be a fully fledged Ranger. Though wary of her at first, her natural abilities impressed him and he took her in with him to be trained, at great risk to himself. Man after man fell at her feet as she practiced day and night to prove her worth – in turn becoming a Senior ranger, like that of her good friend. Devout and loyal to the Ranger Corps, she is diamond in the rough, and not one to be trifled with. Always wearing her hair in her trademark plait, her beauty is not often seen for what it is. Very rarely does she ever smile, though when she does, it is because she has just killed one of the enemy.
Would old school vampires be able to match it with modern day ones at a night club? Uhmmm….well. Lately I have been writing a lot about vampires in my stories, but they don’t look like this.
Continuing on from “Beneath the Silk”, Sophia has created a world within Nick’s mind. An illusion of a grand estate, with a special surprise behind the red veils. But is the Vampire knight to be the Predator, or the prey?
Co-written with SA.
SA: ‘Beautiful.’ Now, that was a word she didn’t hear quite often, especially not when that mask came off. There was beauty in the unknown and yet the unknown usually disturbed many when the secret was revealed – Those never-blinking optics, their oh, so strange, chromatics and the very fact that they were lacking pupils could disturb and horrify many – And they did. It was the main reason for her to hide them, away from vision of others, the main reason why the black mask never left her features for such a long time; It was only when she realized her preys could not escape her anymore, when she took it off, letting it be the last thing they saw as she basked in their horror, at the sight of those abnormal hues. She was called beautiful before; A woman who resembled a Rusalka, a Predator. A Siren, even, knew how to get around – Seduce, entice, all for it to make sure she’d feed – And yet, she was never called Beautiful when her orbs would’ve been released from their black silk prison. It took her by surprise, even widened those striking azures that if they were to have pupils, they’d be dilating by now. But they didn’t. So, instead, it looked like the azure got even brighter, deeper, like the vast depths of an ocean combined with a bright sky, lacking any cloud to block its beauty. The hand placed over her cheek was only met with one of her gloved limbs, gently slithering over his, letting their digits lace together in a grip, as she held onto him, her gaze drifting to the ground. If she was cold before, there was a hint of warmth, just a little bit over her cheeks, over the alabaster skin. “How so…?” She wanted to know – It wasn’t a test, this time. There was curiosity in her own beauty, beauty never seen before by others in a moment like this.
RB: -They say that there is beauty in all things. What people regard as beautiful is a matter of interpretation. Nick had seen much over his travels, and found that there were women that considered themselves to be attractive, opening flaunting it and using it for a way to gain power and or a love sick puppy. What Nick saw, when the black bandanna was removed was something that he could even regard as being sacred. Why she had hidden her eyes from the world, when they were in fact the most spectacular he had ever seen? Was she ashamed of them? Is that why she was so quick to cover them up in his presence? All that the vampire knew was that she wished to share this with him, and whether or not he was truly worthy to bear witness – he did not know. His reaction and words had been spontaneous as had been his movement of his hand to cup her cheek. He did not expect her to touch his hand, or ask as to how he found her to beautiful. “You have eyes that are deeper in shade then the bluest ocean, or the brightest sapphire. You are unique, truly.” As she could see inside of him, he was able to see what others did not. Nick moved his free hand to her chin, so that he might raise her face up so that he may look upon her again. “Look at me, Sophia. I know you can see through me. You can see I speak the truth.”
SA: Such an odd moment. In a more than romantic scenery, with the moonlight behind them as the scent of rose petals enveloped them both, carried by the soft breeze. An odd moment in which the appeared more like lovers, than Predator and Prey or even two Predators. A moment in which she, herself, almost forgot what she was here for, taking in the man’s words as if those were words she barely heard, ever in her life. New words, like a small child trying to make sense of them, grasp their true meaning. ‘Unique’. She repeated that one, in a whispered, hushed voice, almost to herself, to make sure she understood. Because, just like a small child, it was new to her. Brows furled inwards, as if frustrated to not grasp its meaning yet, interrupted by the wandering limb which soon found its place against her chin, lifting her azure gaze upwards. That’s when it happened. When she remembered why she was here for, and a muffled grown escaped the depths of her throat, like a deep, deep rumble rolling along the column of her neck on the inside, only to finally meet his gaze once more. What was it?
RB: -Did she not believe what he just said? Sophia repeated the word ‘unique’ as though she had never heard it before. Had no one ever payed her a compliment like this? Nick meant every word. But if it flattered her, it didn’t. She made a strange sound as she stared upwards, but not at him. He could feel the rumble of the release through the skin under her chin. Perhaps he had overstepped his bounds. After all, he had touched her, not just on her cheek, but under her chin so that she might raise her gaze. Was he not meant to see the beauty of her eyes? Maybe she simply did not expect that from him. Nick was now in uncharted waters, and…her waters. He was suddenly reminded that this was all her doing. The vampire’s lips formed a thin line as he started to draw back his hand. “If I have offended you, Sophia, I apologize. I am not normally so…hands on.” –
SA: It was then when he could finally see why her eyes were hardly considered beautiful – The gaze she had given him at that moment, that very moment when she lifted her head upwards to meet the male’s hues, was a gaze which only emanated coldness. They stared, so deeply that you’d feel them staring right into your soul and so cold that you’d even feel how a tiny shard of ice made its way to your heart. The most disturbing factor of them was that they never blinked, not once – A continuous stare, a gaze into ones soul, as if scattering through it, searching, rummaging only to find what she wanted. What she needed. A hand moved upwards. And then, the other followed as they both found their place on the male’s cheeks, cupping them lightly as fingers trailed upwards to tug against the raven strands. She moved closer, bumping her body against his, pressing them together, silk on silk, cold on cold as she gripped onto him, so tightly and yet so delicately that he wouldn’t even want to escape – not that he even could. It was then, when she leaned in, as her azure optics continued to stare into his, never blinking, lacking pupils and oh, so very deep. The saying of ‘getting lost in ones eyes’ surely attributed to this woman, for they were ocean deep and sky-high blue. The moment which followed could only gain the attributes of stunning, surprising and yet, so very mesmerizing, when her lips parted only barely, enough to cradle the male’s lower lip between them, pressing them together, while her hands continued their grip around his neck, now. This was the oddity of her being – Despite being ice cold, her lips burned. A searing heat, scolding hot to the touch as if they wanted to burn the flesh they made contact with. Longing into the passion.
RB: – Women are such fickle creatures. One minute they have you thinking you’ve gone and done wrong, and the next, they are kissing you with a burning sensation that is more than just sizzling. Nick had barely gotten out his apology, when Sophia did the unexpected. Had Nick misjudged the growl for something entirely different? All he knew was that she had taken his cheeks in her hands, so that she may bring his face closer to her own. Her body now pressing up against his, and she actually bumped her frame to his. The grip she now had was one of strength, like she had no intention of letting him go. But, did he want to be free from this woman? Hell no. He had already been captivated by her eyes, and now she was taking him into an embrace, that had him lose his breath. Lost in the hypnotic gaze of her azure eyes, Nick seemed to lose all sense of reason and found himself being kissed by her with lips that were in total contradiction to the rest of her. Burning…like they were on fire. As if from far away….deep down in the Vampire’s belly, a growl was released that reverberated up through his throat and into her waiting mouth, that had seized him captive. Nick could feel the tightening grip around his neck from her hands, and this was when he gave in. Sweet surrender. The pain and pleasure melded into one powerful force, and the vampire wrapped his own arms around her, so that he could suffer longer. The predator within him rose up proudly, and he kissed her back savagely…hungrily…as though his unlife depended on it.
SA: -Naked. It was the only word that could be attributed to how she felt right now, stripped of the concealment over the secret she kept for so long. She didn’t care for clothing, as for here, there were only means of enticing even further, creating and intensifying the façade she donned upon herself – But to have her mask pulled off really meant standing naked in front of the other, a feeling of almost embarrassment, like a virgin revealing herself for the first time, on her wedding night. It felt odd – Odder was the fact that she actually felt that way, the Predator. Chains rattled within her, the Monster longing for release as the kiss lingered, on and on. Hot on Cold, lingering desire as her hands tugged at the back of his coat, gripping tightly into small fists. To hear her growl only made her grin – A wide, Cheshire-like grin without even breaking the kiss as she offered a small nip to the male’s lower lip only to provoke him further. Provoke his own Predator to come loose. And that’s when another dance happened, one she would lead now, while she took a step backwards, towards the room. And another. And another. Tugging him to follow, leaving the balcony and going back within the room in ruins, while their lips still melted against each other.
RB: -The power of this woman was insane. The way that she kissed him, and clawed at the back of his jacket, only served to strengthen her hold over him. Of course his hands had found themselves wandering over and across her back. Finding their way to the rounded globes of her bottom, that had been so easy to caress through the flimsy fabric of her gown. The deeper and longer that Nick kissed Sophia and let his tongue snake into her mouth to lick at the insides of her cheek, run across her teeth, did he truly feel that he wanted more than wanton kisses. The inner growl had been his predator announcing that he was home. Home – within her eyes. Those same eyes that did not blink, nor move to follow the light. But Sophia was ahead of the game, breaking the kiss – only to nip at his lower lip in a bid to bring him out further. The beauty of his face was now changing to that of his vampiric self. The sharpness of his features as his bones seemed to lengthen beneath his skin. Nick’s eyes gave way to a blood red sheen with a small black pupil in its center. Though she might have been smiling a Cheshire cat like grin at her prize, he wasn’t. Never more serious had he been before. She might have been dancing him back into her lair of fine veiled curtains, but he was already eyeing off her neck. Nick now snorted through his nostrils, as she kept kissing his lips and dragging him back…One step at a time. As soon as she did stop though, he’d pull away from her plump lips and then start to lick and nip at the base of her neck. The game was on…
SA: This was it. When two Predators met and the collision happened – Two different worlds, colliding, shaping as one, gathering their common points and clashing against their differences. A collision that could only be considered deadly, fatal, for at least one of the playing parts. This was the game, the hunting game between two Predators about to snap – Her, with the rattling chains within her soul, right at the core as the Monster wanted, longed for release. Sweet, sweet release. And him, with the Beast boiling inside, the moment she felt his tongue slither out to play with hers. They danced together while they moved across the room, until she actually ~pinned~ him to the wall – Enough force to impact his back against the concrete surface, her hands now falling around his neck and draping along his chest as the tips of her claws slid along his shirt; They didn’t rip it, yet, but applied enough pressure for him to ~feel~ the small scratched right along his skin beneath the fabric. And when he leaned down, and nipped along her jawline and neck, a growl was released – It almost sounded like a murr; Sensual, soft, erotic, a feline getting what she truly wanted. Finally. When he did, she only arched back to bend backwards, lowering her frame in a small arch as their lower bodies pressed against each other, her chest hovering in the air, for his viewing pleasure. She pulled him in, letting his torso reach hers as some stray strands of her snow-white tresses dangled in the air – An almost similar way of holding the pose she did when they danced.
RB: – Nick’s eyes rolled back as he fell deep within the darkness of his own inner beast. It was clamouring to be released from within, as much as Sophia’s was. The wicked licks to her neck had brought him a pleasurable release in the form of the rapid beating of a long dead heart. All through their meetings he had remained the perfect gentleman, the silver tongue, the Knight. Now, he had forgotten all that he was – only the base creature wanted to be brought out to Sophia’s light. Being slammed suddenly against the cold concrete surface, stunned him enough to snap his head up and back from her neck. From this point, his elongated fangs were on full display while his jaw slackened. The handsome Nick was gone from view. He let out a guttural growl, almost animal like when Sophia rand her nails down his chest and scratched through cloth to his skin. The red of his blood now seeping through his silken shirt. The pain was delicious and he took one hand to rip his shirt apart so she could smell and feel the richness of his blood. Red to the point of being black. Sophia then lent back so she could display her ample bosom for his viewing pleasure. Her back arching just like before when they danced. Nick’s mouth opened as he was about to lunge at her throat. It was irresistible, and just as he was about to bite, he said her name….as if the man within…was fighting back. The one…that cared for her. “Sophia…” His fangs stopping as he panted…the tips so close to breaking the skin, till he dragged them across and rested his forehead to her neck. –
SA: The game has begun – a game between two Predators, finally being offered release from their cage, the chains which kept them imprisoned rattling loudly, loud enough that one would almost be able to hear them, if they paid close attention to the darkness. Such common features between each other, both sharing a monster which lurked within. It was a serpent’s grip, her arms coiling up around his neck only to secure him in her grasp, pulling and tugging at his form closer and closer to her – His breath, at the base of her neck, rolling along her chest which would’ve sent a shiver through her spine, a quickened pace to her heartbeat – Yet she had none of that. Instead, there was a rumbling sound, like the purr of a satisfied feline, escaping those plump, scarlet lips the moment his would reach her flesh. Feeling just the tip of his fangs trailing, barely hovering above her alabaster skin, hearing her name being called out almost like a whisper, a cry for help, she offered a grin – Sardonic and cruel, the grin of a Cheshire cat as one arm went upwards, tugging at those raven strands of his. Eventually, she’d release him – even ~pushing~ him away from her with enough force to have his body impacting the wall behind him just slightly – as she began walking away. Her head craned to the side, her eyes turned to meet him, offering a gaze over her shoulder, azures burning cold. It was a sensual gaze, one filled with eroticism as her lips slightly parted to allow the sensation to sink in, while she moved forwards, towards the stairs.
RB: -Finger tips slowly dragging at first. Cold steel to touch, yet their strength was undeniable. Like quicksilver she was able to wind her way around him. Serpent like movements and deadly to any who was weak to her charms. Yes, it was a game of two predators, very much so. In the depths of her eyes, Nick found himself staring into those mirrors that showed only what she wanted him to see. Her body writhed as the temptress within her led him into the very center of her web. An insatiable need by the wraith – to tangle the vampire up into her invisible silken strands of malice. Sound bubbled up from within the exotic white haired maiden. Whatever it was that stopped Nick from making an attack upon her had only staved off the inevitable. The drag of his canines across her flesh caused her to react harshly. Forcefully pushing him away and into a marble pillar, that shook violently. Dust lightly falling and speckling the only offered candle light. Had he just displeased her? It was so hard to tell, for now she was looking back at him with eyes that burned ice cold – the wicked smile on her face making him want her all the more. Nick’s reaction was to follow her. Almost blindly, he walked towards the stairs. Everything about her was sinful and delicious. From her scent to her skin, her bewitching eyes, and those hips…God those hips. Lust rose sharply from within a darkened place. She had lit the flame and it was going to be hard to extinguish. –
SA: How was it possible for something which functioned so much like a machine to have such a sway in her movement, almost intoxicant to his view? How was it that a woman which was far from a woman have such femininity and sensuality in her movements, as each step up the stairs was performed with such grace, such flow that each step seemed like a dance in which the hem of her long white dress participated, combined with the soft clicking of her heels, only to enhance the sensation – Like a clock ticking, those heels beat along the floor on her way up, a clock, ticking, for him. Tick-tock, click-click-click all the way up. She never looked back at him again, after that one simple, subtle gaze, allowing him to drown in her movements. The swaying of her hips, the curve her body created when each leg lifted up against the stair. Only to enhance his lust. Lust – One of the many things she fed on, the Wraith, hungry for Sins – So hungry that he could feel her, so close and yet so far from his body and soul – So close to devouring both. There was a sudden click, before the male could have realized what happened, as the door behind them snapped shut, sending them both upstairs, as vision would be graced with the sight of a king sized bed, under a canopy. Scarlet red, silken sheets with crimson reflections. Now, she was pinned – Her back rested neatly against the door, as if letting him ~know~ he had no escape anymore, blocking his only way out. Her eyes burned, sending cold shivers along the male’s already tensed muscles, as those lips remained perpetually parted, only slightly, barely creating a small gap between them. Waiting. Anticipating. Provoking. Longing.
RB: -The trap had been set long before Nick had set foot upon the stairs. It had all begun the moment that Sophia had entered the Kingdom of the Blood Rose. From the beginning, the white haired wraith had one objective, and that was to feed. The Queen, in her fear had left the Knight to entertain the guest, and he had obliged in the game of cards. The reading. He had shown to have strength, and even had been given the card as a reminder of that event. Now however, was that same strength going to save him, and did he even want to be saved? The mesmerizing way in which Sophia’s hips swayed, back and forth like a pendulum, or hypnotist’s fob watch – had the Vampire all but lost to the world outside of Sophia’s making. Nick followed until it was too late to turn back. Once we accept our fate, we are at the mercy of what lay behind the magician’s curtain. What awaited Nick however was a room that could best be described as a bedroom. If he was expecting a dining hall, he was mistaken, but really…he was the main course. The stage was set. The players took their positions upon the floor. The click of the lock turned and with her back resting to that same door, there would be no escape. But really, did he want to be set free? A wry smile formed to his lips, through the haze of anticipation and lust. He tore off his coat and simply let it fall to the floor. Bold steps cut across the floor back to where she stood. In this room, of decadence and red satin, blood would be spilt, and it was probably going to be his. Nick started to undo the buttons of his shirt, as she may well watch him in silence. “This is what you wanted all along. There was no dinner…you wanted to feed upon me.” Nick opened his shirt, and she could see his abs and hairless chest. “How hungry are you, Sophia?” His voice hoarse, but riddled with lust. The very thing she wanted most of all. –
SA: “Starving.” It all started with that ~word~. And then, everything would follow in a sudden collision, as everything truly came to be after that one singular, whispered out word was spoken. She always played her Game right – The Blind Reader, this woman with such an abnormal visage, abnormal characteristics and odd behaviour, this puzzle unable to be solved. She always played her Game just like it was supposed to be played, despite the vast majority of her victims never truly reaching this point of it – Truth be told, there were very few she actually fed off from their Lust, very few to invite over Dinner instead of devouring them right at the Tarot table. Very few who actually, truly impressed her? An arm extended upwards, satin gloved long digits playing with the pins which held white tresses in place only to remove them, letting those strands of pure snow cascade over her shoulders like an avalanche, waves and waves crashing against her shoulder blades and over her back, throwing the pins aside. Her azures made sure to burn and roam over each inch of his body, each small movement he made, each button he unhooked from his shirt. Sophia didn’t move from her spot, nor uttered another word. There was nothing else to be said, like a Tarot reading itself, when all the cards are flipped over, facing them. All the cards showing, finally, clear on the table for them to see. The Cards never lie and now, they were telling this man’s Faith, in the hands of the Reader, so skilfully crafting and shaping the thread of his Destiny. But this was a hunt, between two Predators, and she wouldn’t have it any other way – A fair fight, Predator to Predator, a War that was on the verge on starting right there, in the bedroom.
RB: -The truth. One word answered everything that Nick now believed. This game she had played so well, was reaching the spectacular conclusion. One that would see her reap the rewards for her efforts. For a man that was facing his greatest threat, he showed a face that was actually happy. There was no more need for words. No more questions to be answered. Her movements, like that of a skilled dancer, started them off. All by the simple letting down of her hair. A torrent of white tresses that tumbled down her back – the pins only scattering to the floor discarded. In matching with her movements, he too began to peel away – at first with his shirt that simply fell to the floor, once he had withdrawn his arms from them one at a time. The silk like black material abandoned. As her eyes traversed his body, so too did Nick’s on hers. The vampire reached out and pinched at the white fabric of her dress, the straps on her shoulders – and slowly he slid them down over the roundness of her shoulders….down her arms so that her beautiful breasts would be exposed to the chill of the night’s air. His fingertips were rough against the soft silkiness of her skin. Sheer, just as he had imagined it to be. Nick was still the hunter, but he knew that there was always that one creature that could never be tamed. His pants now sat low on his hips, the vampire exposed to Sophia’s hunger. He was so close now, that she could feel his breath upon her skin. His lips parted enough for her to see those dog teeth of his. The suffering would end on his call. “Feast…upon me.”
SA: His shirt, fully removed, allowing his pale skin to be for her viewing pleasure only as one arm reached for him, slender digits trailing lightly along his chest. Those satin white gloved fingertips only moved to caress along each line of perfectly defined muscles of his chest as if tracing the lines of a sculpted masterpiece, creating small patterns along his skin. She felt his wandering him as it slid under the straps of her dress, slowly letting them fall over her shoulders, feeling the softness of her skin – velvet to the touch, feather-like. Head craned to the side only to take notice of this motion before both her hands moved to search for his, lacing digits together as she moved his hands at the back of her dress, up to the top, where the zipper started – It was then when he could actually feel the structure of her body, that almost anorexic physique of this woman as the zipper was strategically placed right in the middle of her body, following the line of her spine. It was straight down, allowing the dress to completely fall, sliding off her body once it would’ve been lowered. She maintained his hands there while hers moved upwards, back along his chest before removing her gloves, having those neatly done nails drag along his flesh. Gentle caress of a feather-like skin combined with sharp, short lived scratches, not enough pressure to draw blood yet enough to leave a small sting. Her lips, perpetually parted only slightly as her body moved almost by instinct against his, leaning in for a kiss, whether or not he would go for unzipping the white fabric which imprisoned her curves. ‘Feast?’ The words echoed through her mind allowing a Cheshire grin to spread over her alabaster features, right in that brief moment, before the kiss. Before the beginning of the end.
RB: -It was truly a dance between two devils. Each had their own desires and reasons for their behavior, and like a skilled chess player, Nick was not showing his true potential just yet. Like a fool he could have rushed in madly, and given into her much sooner than he had, but he gave off the illusion that he was completely smitten by her attentions. It was only when Nick had removed her white dress, and felt the edges of her spine jutting out of her lily white skin, did he truly realize that she was in fact wasting away before him. Bones sticking out so far as to stretch the skin for all they were worth. Nick’s fingers curled inwards after the touch as though seizing a small bird in the palm of his hand. But those same fingers would be prized open by Sophia’s fingers, when brought back around. Interlocked them with her own. Her free hand was now naked of the white satin glove, and so she started off, by scratching down Nick’s torso – not enough to draw blood, but more so to arouse the Vampire into a state of being. The vampire released a pent up growl, that had been building ever since their bodies came together. Pressed flesh to flesh, and now she went in for the kill, but this was when the game turned slightly. A twist that was to be unexpected. As she leaned in for the kiss, his fingers ripped the zipper downward in such a fashion that it may well tear the fabric. His dog teeth fully extended went to not just nip her bottom lip, but pull it back far enough that it may well cause a tear. Nick snorted as the male started to show a sign of true dominance. A fist full of the white fabric caught between his fingers, as he drew her even closer. –
SA: Withering away’ was perhaps, indeed, the best term to describe the physical condition of this abnormal woman who truly fell in the cliché category of ‘flesh and bone’ and yet, something already dead cannot still be withering away – She believed that by now he had a couple of hints scattered here and there along their time together to understand the anomaly of her, he reasons why pieces of the puzzle refused to click together – But if he didn’t, she wouldn’t complain much. A meal was a meal, despite having a small disappointment in the outcome of it. For once, though, she was caught off-guard, so sure of her movement to go for the kiss that she did not notice when his hands moved back around her frame. Her body once pressed against the wooden door was now ever so roughly pulled towards his until there was no more room between their chest, torsos rubbing together. No room to breathe – not that she needed to – no room to actually create a distance between them anymore, neither physical nor mental. The board was set and the pawns each had their place on it. There was even a soft sound which escaped her, a sound he wouldn’t have heard before, to actually hear her surprised: A gasp into the rough tug of her form towards his only to feel and hear that zipper being pulled down, sliding along her frame – The dress parting in the middle behind her to reveal skin of alabaster so easily once camouflaged with the fabric of seminal chromatics; The prominent shoulder blades and spine and the natural curve of her body, as white fabric eventually slid all the way down to the floor with a small, barely audible dropping noise, rustling the air around them. It was then, when her bottom lip was tugged into the grasp of his sharp canines, that she reacted with a stifled growl of her own – a longing growl, a hungry growl as her arms went under his shoulders and at his back, pulling ~his~ form to ~hers~ while taking a step backwards to impact her own back against the door, once more, with quite the loud bang to it. Then and there, it happened for a similar motion to be performed, apparently coincidental – But he should know better than to consider this woman’s actions as mere coincidences by now – Meant to install a déjà-vu feeling into the man’s mind; One of her long, slender and now fully bare, beautiful legs came to coil around one of his, trailing the fabric of his trousers against her perfect flesh only to gently loop it around his hips. Provoking, yet inviting him more towards her. The Lion, letting its prey approach willingly.
RB: – A meal is a meal that is true. But who was to dine first? It was that sound, the shock of surprise by the vampire’s boldness, that caught Sophia off guard and it was at this moment, that the Vampire completely turned the game on its head. Oh she was quick to use her slender limbs to wrap around his leg to bring him in even closer, but this just served to make it all the more easier for him to do what he was about to. Wraith or not, she was a woman. A woman that hungered for the same nocturnal desires that all others did. Hungry as she may be, there would be a part of her that wanted to be fed upon. To be tasted, savored…and enjoyed. When her body slammed hard against the door, with no room to move away, Nick started to slink down. His nose prodding and his head flicking against her bare skin as he went down on one knee. A hand moved her leg so that it was now draped over his shoulder. Oh…she could still do that, it only made it easier for him. Nick tore the rest of her dress away with his teeth, causing it to rip down the front as well as the back – exposing the sweetness that he searched for. Her musk was intoxicating, and with one leg up, she was well and truly exposed to his ministrations. At first, he ran his nose up between her swollen lips, before letting his long snake like tongue delve between her sensitive folds. Already her nectar could be tasted upon his waiting tongue, and he angled his head in a fashion that allowed him to open mouth kiss those same lower lips. His right hand snaked around to capture the ripe bare ass cheek that awaited him, and so this meant she would find it difficult to move without a lot of effort on her part. If the lip nipping had been shocking, this was bound to bring out a cry of unadulterated pleasure from those sweet lips of hers. The vampire’s head was now buried between her thighs, his tongue flicking in and out as he lapped at her richness of taste. A rumble of dark pleasure was felt from his heaving chest. The feeding had begun.-
SA: The feeding had begun indeed, seemingly for both of them – different styles, different methods and even completely antithetic connotations for the action or object of feeding. With the last bits of white fabric torn from her figure, Sophia was left completely naked, in front of him, showing yet another almost disturbing abnormality – There was Perfection. The notion which is considered impossible to reach was, at least at first glance, reached by her features – Her breasts, the perfect tear-drop shape, round and perky with a pair of pale pink nipples, erect in the cold air of the room in ruins; her abdomen, completely flat, having those prominent hipbones protruding against a thin layer of flesh; Her legs, long, slender, that small mound of flesh above her flesh neatly bald, smooth skin to the touch. The oddity which made her disturbing was that there was no blemish, no birthmark, nothing but a vast field of perfect alabaster flesh, as if she wasn’t born, bur created. As if her body was a living – but not quite – , breathing – but not really – sculpture or marble. There was one singular sign of a blemish, one that was almost impossible not to notice as it consisted in a scar, right in the middle of her chest, merely a couple of inches below the in-between of her breasts. A perfect, vertical scar which showed the precision of it doing and yet, a scar with a slight blackened edge to it. He didn’t seem to give it much importance, despite it being the only ‘normal’ thing in the perfect anomaly that she was – She felt him, lowering himself only to bring one of her legs upwards as it instinctually draped along his back, his breath trailing over her most sacred area, her very intimate sex and his tongue spreading those soft, smooth folds only to reach the fruit it was after. Another growl, rumbled along her throat as those azures came to jolt to the back of her head instantly while her neck snapped back. There was pleasure. But to her, it had a meaning beyond the Carnal itself – The Lust was what she fed on, the mere feeling of it rushing through your body – it fueled and made her chest heave in anticipation, longing for more. More and more until she would have been ready to ‘Feast’.
RB : -Our bodies speak in volumes that cannot be heard by the naked ear. The slightest tremor from a quivering thigh, the sharp jerk of realization that one was being explored and tasted by a skilled lover. Nick was not only paying attention to the sounds she uttered, but the way she moved. And it was at this point, that Nick began to realize something. While most women became a quaking mess at this sort of attention, Sophia was holding back. Yes, she let the leg stay upon his shoulder, but there was no hand to guide his head further into what would be her sacred jewel. With his mouth still wet from the lacquer she provided, the Vampire pushed her leg off his shoulder and started to rise slowly as though slinking up her form. He had caught sight of her almost unnatural beauty on his travels down and up. He did come to notice the vertical scar that was between those all too perfect breasts. The only imperfection upon what was a clean slate. As they came face to face once more, she would be able to smell herself upon his nose and those same grey lips. She was holding back, though reeling him in at the same time. It was not her own pleasure that she sought. It was his. Her body was bait; the whole thing was a trap. He stared her down as the jigsaw pieces all fell into place. Nick’s eyes widened at the reality of this moment. Always the predator, but this wicked girl had stacked the deck long before he sat down at her table. “You don’t want an easy meal, do you?” He’d been manipulated beautifully. Without so much as a word from her. How incredibly clever of her. She may be standing before him naked, but she was dressed to kill. He stared at those lips. Should he kiss her one last time? The silence was now deafening.-
SA: There was no such thing as an ‘easy meal’ to her – To even utter those 2 words was offensive for her – She never wanted something easy. So, to see the man stop and, moreover, tell her that managed to irritate her yet not enough to move away. Her arms did remove themselves from the grip they had over his form, hands coming to place palms flat on the wooden surface behind her as they stood there, face to face. Her game; unmasked by him. Her reward; recognized by him. “Of course not.” She mused out lightly, as those azure orbs burned deep within him with such coldness. Never blinking, always staring. “…But you knew that, the moment you stepped in.” And there it was, the Monster revealing itself to the man as a sardonic grin allowed those scarlet lips to curl upwards by their corners. Slowly, she moved her back away from the door, steps followed by that soft clicking of her heels against the floor motioning her across the upstairs, all the way to the edge of the bed. “And you don’t seek an easy meal, either – It’s why you’ve accepted my Dinner invitation which, mind you, was just that – an invitation left to your free will to accept or decline.” With that, her body propped up to sit by the edge of the bed, hands holding onto the sheets as her legs crossed, left over right, offering a gaze his way. “You knew what you were getting to, the moment you asked your question at the table… And furthermore, it’s what ~you~ want. You don’t want an easy task – You seek the thrill. The suspense and the climax. You seek what lies beyond a mortal’s capacity of grasping meaning to certain things. Which is what I am able to offer you.” Pause. One of her hands patting the spot next to her onto the bed. “…you see, Nick. I didn’t seek you out, no – You’ve sought me, from the beginning.”
“A Royal Affair”
Approaching one of the balcony’s of the grand stone building, Lady Dominique now had a perfect viewing platform for the great castle of the King. As the breeze teased her red curls, that fell down off her shoulder, she let out a soft sigh. The King was up there, probably in his grand chamber. No doubt surrounded by his adored children. The Prince and Princess. Already she had seen those in the streets and in some of the grander houses sporting black garb. It was like they couldn’t wait for the King to take his final breath. It actually sickened her to the core. Dominique knew how much the King loved colours. She could remember his voice, as though he was standing in behind her now. Resting his hand on her shoulder so that she might clasp her hand over the top of it. One of those private moments, that she held deep within her heart. Their relationship would cause massive scandals if it were to be revealed. Of course, all believed him to be a good and devout King, and he was….he just had a taste for red heads, and one in particular. Dominique dragged her fingers along the harsh surface of the stone railing as she kept thinking of him. What made her heart ache even more was…he had not called for her. Why? The bastard child of his brother, his niece….his lover. That is what she was, though to society she was regarded as a business woman and a lady of great wealth. Oh, the King did help start her off, but she discovered the ability on which to read people. To seek out those that could only enhance her wealth and stature. Now she had enough gold, enough houses to rival any Duchess or Baroness. Her dead husband gave her nothing but a name. She had bore no children, and probably never would. There were secret desires to carry the King’s child, but she knew that any child that was of his name, would be a bastard and most likely killed by the Prince.
Since her husband’s untimely death, Dominique had a line of suitors a mile long. For one, her beauty was well spoken of, not to mention her vast wealth and connections. She should be happy to receive tributes and proposals daily, but alas she was not. Dominique couldn’t bring herself to love another man. The King had her heart from the moment he bedded her and stole her virginity. What would her cousin, the Princess have to say about that? Thankfully, neither of her cousins knew. Both the King and Dominique were careful to hide their affair from prying eyes. The only one that knew, was Tim – her man servant. A eunuch that she had bought on a trip to the east. He had served her faithfully and loyally as she treated him with a respect she held for few men. He was more than a slave, more than an adviser. Tim was her eyes and ears beyond the Market walls. The juicy tit bits that he brought back to whisper into her ear, was worth its weight in gold, and helped her to manipulate certain situations, that might turn scandalous, if she had not gotten involved. Everyone had a price, and Dominique was more than willing to buy a few souls in order for her to gain more power and influence. A human she may be, but a devious and crafty one at that.
But what is wealth when the one thing you want most so desperately, lay just out of your reach? Green eyes filled with sadness as she stared up at the black flags that had taken over from the royal crest. Another sign that the King was dying.
“I should be there.” Her voice wistful and full of regret.
“My Lady, if you were would you be able to mask your true feelings from prying eyes. The royals are not stupid.”
Tim came up behind his Mistress and looked upon her fondly. Her soft silken dress lifting and dancing in the breeze like gossamer wings. A beauty standing in her ivory tower – ever longing for what she can’t have. Tim exhaled softly as his Mistress gave no response. She was thinking….she was always thinking. Lady Dominique patted the stone rail, then turned towards her man servant. His heart near stopped a beat to see that she had tears in her eyes. Lady Dominique De Shay never cried. Not even on news of the death of her husband. That time….she laughed. Odd how emotions react in such strange ways.
“I envy them, Tim. They are probably sitting on his bed right now, taking his hand. Listening to his words.” Dominique’s head shook slightly as she reached up and wiped away a single falling tear. Rare was it to see this soft underbelly, from what was a ruthless business woman. It was just then as she realized what she had said, that she suddenly grit her teeth. Sadness quickly changing to anger. Her eyes were still cast down, but her small hands were curling into fists.
“So swear it if he dies before I get to tell him I love him …..” Her words trailed off as Tim reached out to touch her arm, to try and help her through this. Dominique pulled away and snarled. “…their house…will be cursed.” Did Dominique even have it in her power to do such a thing? Tim drew his hand back and bowed his head as Dominique turned her head back to the direction of the castle. Lady Domi raised her head proudly, her chest swelling as she strengthened her resolve.
“I may be a bastard child…but I was loved by a King.”
Something light for a Friday night.
Sharing his knowledge, Valmont wanted to show Ruby a world that he was from. He was trying to invoke memories, that may help her remember her past life, and who she really was.
Scene setting: The Embassy of Hell : Seven sins series.
Co-written with Zu.
Zu: Ruby took the arm offered to her, and the both of them went their way to the training room. It had been awhile since Ruby used her weapons against someone, but she had a feeling there would be no killing involved. In a way, Ruby was disappointed but it was just her nature for a long time; not killing would go against that very nature. She saw the… whatever that was that Valmont took from Nicholas, and it may be the thing that she’d use to talk to others. Ruby didn’t mind, but when she thought about it, wasn’t it that thing that others used to make words? She didn’t know how those things worked, but she’d learn very soon. She placed her hood back over herself, almost as if to calm herself down.
Razorbackwriter: With Zachary and Nicholas both set tasks to do, this meant that the Ambassador was able to escort Ruby freely to the training room. The incubus had taken from Ruby’s expression and demeanor that she was uncomfortable with all the fuss of the sudden arrival of staff. It was something that she might have to get used to if she had any plans on staying at the embassy on a more permanent basis. Taking his arm and placing the hood back over herself, the crimson hooded girl now seemed to be more at ease just in Valmont’s company. With the board and chalk in one hand and Ruby on the arm, he escorted her through to the next corridor and down a passage.
“This room does not get used much. Training is something that only happens in a time of war and thankfully the last war was pretty much over before it started.” The doors would be opened by two guardians and this allowed Valmont to walk Ruby through without trouble or letting her go.
On arriving inside, Ruby would find herself in a large expansive room with coloured floor mats that criss crossed the marble floor, and on every side wall there was armaments from across each and every kingdom. A sample selection of the very weapons used by each creed of Sin. There was also suits of armor and mock battlements set up for practice runs. It was a very odd set up for an indoor arena. Which is exactly what it was.
The doors were closed behind them and this was when Valmont turned to Ruby.
“Show me your sword, and just how you wield it.”
She may not be able to have the gift of speech, but he wanted to see just what kind of warrior lay beneath the ruby coloured hood.
Zu: Ruby was glad that the others were gone, it made her feel more comfortable to deal with just one person rather than a group. Even since they expressed themselves to one another, not even a day ago, Ruby had gotten very comfortable with Valmont. He understood her in a way others wouldn’t try, or couldn’t. He gave her a place to stay, and a good sense of companionship. The two guardians gave her no trouble, and she had hoped not either. Ruby looked around the new room they were in. She had never been in a training room before, and knowing that they’d be alone, she let down her hood to once again show her face. She looked a bit amazed, but not as overjoyed as once would suspect.
She looked at Valmont, who now addressed to her and her weapon. He called it a sword, but it wasn’t really a sword. Ruby knew what it was, and she wouldn’t be able to say what it actually was. Still, in Ruby’s world, seeing was much easier than talking about it. She pulled it out and with a flick of her wrist, it popped open in it’s full length. Her scythe was taller than her, almost twice as tall, but she seemed to wield it with ease. She looked at Valmont and put it to her side, standing up, wondering what he wanted her to do next.
Razorbackwriter: The weapon that Ruby unsheathed was larger than when he remembered seeing it up at the Isolated cliff. Interesting that this was the choice of weapon for a petite girl in a hood. Not one that those she faced would expect either. He remembered that she drew on it when she was afraid, or intimidated. This left the Ambassador to wonder if she used it out of a love for the weapon, or solely as a source of defense. Ruby had drawn her hood back as well, when she was in Valmont’s company. Again observations about this girl were starting to paint a picture of one that was both insecure and afraid in this place – Hell. Someone went to a lot of trouble to stitch up her mouth and then leave her here.
The girl handled the scythe with relative ease, considering its size and presumed weight. She had a natural and fluid ability to wield it as though she was incredible experienced in its used. A scythe is more commonly owned by a reaper, or at least that is what Valmont had thought before now. But Ruby wasn’t a reaper of souls? Was she?
“Very impressive, I must say.” The Ambassador gave her an encouraging smile to see how well she handled the long scythe. He had no intention of trying to disarm her, or cause her reason to take fright. Valmont had been careful as not to be impulsive or reactionary. There was simply no need. Too much too soon might be detrimental to their very new friendship.
“I can now see that you are more than capable of using it. Though the physics are astounding considering its size.” By this he meant that it was almost twice her height and yet she moved it effortlessly. “Thank you for showing me Ruby.”The training room was probably the best open area in which to have a demonstration of her weapon safely. The Ambassador then explained more about the room. “Here, we have all the different types of weapons commonly used by the different Kingdoms of Hell. Each donated by the reigning monarch of the time. Fascinating, if you like museum pieces.” What the Ambassador meant by this was that few if any of them were used. It was more for studying and understanding how each kingdom went about warfare, which was common place.
Remembering the chalk board and the chalk that Nicholas had acquired, Valmont took them out and then he wrote a simple letter V on the chalk board. V standing for Valmont. It was written in a cursive style and the Ambassador showed the board to Ruby. He was hopeful that the girl might understand. This being the first opportunity he had to try and teach her.
“This is the letter V.” He then pointed to himself and said his name. “Valmont.” Once again he pointed at the chalk board and back to himself. “V.” He took out a small cloth and erased the V, replacing it with an R. Valmont turned the board towards Ruby and said. “This…is an R. R…for Ruby.”
The Ambassador offered the board and chalk to Ruby as a gift.
Zu: Ruby felt a bit of happiness and warm in her cold body when Valmont gave her that genuine smile, she even grew a bit transparent by that. It had been awhile since she’s gone transparent, but so far nothing happened yet. She kept it out until Valmont thanked her for the demonstration. She put it away just as effectively as she had taken it out, focusing back on Valmont who was giving her a bit of a history lesson on the weapons in the room. This was an entire different culture she was not exposed to. Throughout her time here in Hell, Ruby only knew a few things; death, blood and loneliness. She was a killer, after all, so there was no time for friends. Before now, Ruby didn’t care about anything besides what she already knew. Now, with Valmont’s kindness, she became more open and especially with Valmont, more than with anyone else. Ruby was right behind Valmont, watching him explain about the weapons.
The subject now turned to the chalkboard and chalk, which was given to Valmont by Nicholas. This was the thing used for this “communication” that seemed absolutely necessary. She didn’t know why it was that way, but if that was part of Valmont’s world then she might as well get used to it. She stared at the board, seeing the smooth movements of the chalk running along the blank space. It amazed her, and after Valmont was done, she took it with the up-most quickness and started out trying to do what he did. It seemed the board and chalk too all her attention.
Razorbackwriter: Valmont was more than just curious to see how Ruby took to writing on the chalk board. He wanted to see how she held the chalk between her fingers, the way she poised the tip before starting to make sweeping strokes. The ambassador was of course rewarded almost immediately, when Ruby took to the first attempt with a flourish that had him smiling effortlessly. The girl had taken to the task so well that all her attention was now focused on the small chalk board and the way she used the chalk to make lettering like Valmont had done.
“You are a natural, Ruby.”
The Ambassador brought his hands together before him, interlocking his gloved fingers as he watched her with a growing enthusiasm. He had never envisioned himself as any sort of teacher before, but then again he had not been challenged to teach a girl to communicate. Though in a way, they already had a bond that was beyond the need for speech. Valmont was finding himself more and more at ease with the girl, and not in the least bit acting out in his nature. It was something of a relief. Unusual though.
Ruby may well wonder why writing was considered such an important form of communication. Valmont saw it as more than just communicating however. It was a way in which many were able to learn about the past, their histories as so written by scholar and men of great learning. From the simplest of drawings on rock walls, to the many tomes that filled the great libraries, it was an integral part of civilization.
The ambassador would wait silently for Ruby to finish with her chalk board, before deciding to extend the tour to the great library of the Embassy. It was a place that held thousands upon thousands of books. The answers to many a question lay within the walls and naturally it was a place that Valmont frequented when he had the chance. Now he had another reason to go there. In a way this was a manner of sharing himself with the hooded girl. Spending this quality time and embarking on a friendship that he hadn’t realized up till this point that he actually needed. He felt a closeness to Ruby that was hard to describe.
“Would you like to see where the books are kept?” He asked, knowing that the training room would be boring to her now.
Zu: Ruby didn’t write the typical way, but instead used her whole hand to move the chalk. It would be a long while before she could actually use it the way others did. Ruby did try doing it like Valmont, only for the chalk to slip out of her hands. She picked it up quickly, before it even had a chance to fall to the ground. She may not have been a writer, but being a warrior until now, she had the reactions of one. She “gave up”, in the sense that she’d try again later when she was away from Valmont, which probably wouldn’t be likely as she would most likely stay by his side the entire time. When asked to see some books, Ruby just agreed with a nod of her head. Ruby put the chalk in it’s proper place, and the board around her neck as they continued through the Embassy.
Ruby was brought to a place where books rested until it was their time to be used. Ruby looked a bit anxious when seeing the monstrous amount of books in one place. She’s seen something like this before, but not to this degree. Words were in these, just like on the chalkboard. Ruby wondered, would she be able to write books for Valmont? In less than a day, Ruby was doing and thinking things that never crossed her mind; Ruby never saw herself as more than what she was before her meeting with Valmont. A tool only to be used for killing, now brought into another world.
Razorbackwriter: The library was a darkened hall that had all the curtains drawn and the shutters over the windows. No natural light was allowed in, and the only illumination came from either lit candles or small reading lamps that could be found on tables that dotted the interior. The surrounding walls were filled with books, and the way to reach many was to scale ladders that ran along on coasters at the bottom. Fed into tracks, they could go as far as ten metres, before you would need to scale another ladder.
Valmont walked along now with his gloved hands behind his back – the back of his right hand slapping the left in a fluid motion. His body was fairly rigid and he had an air about him. It was natural to him, as he thought that slouching was a form of being lazy in one’s self. When he regarded Ruby once again, he noted a look on her face that showed anxiety. Was the library too much for her? Or did she think that the ambassador was going to try and get her to write great novels, after only just giving her a board and chalk just a short time before. Valmont acted quickly to allay her fears.
“Ruby, fear not. This is just a place that I enjoy a quiet moment, to reflect and also to learn. I wouldn’t try to get you to write long stories like the ones in the books.”
He had hoped that his explanation would suffice and that she could go back to being relaxed in his company. They truly were very different, and Valmont was doing his utmost to ensure that he did not upset the girl. This in itself was unusual, since he was having to suppress his own natural feelings and urges. Valmont had managed it when he had to meet with female royals before. But this was different. The ambassador felt this overwhelming sense of responsibility for the girl’s well being. Almost father like with a child. It was all very new to him too.
Valmont stopped and thought for a moment. There was one place he could show her, that would give them a way to interact on a level that required no words at all.
“Have you ever danced?” Valmont was thinking of taking her into the grand ballroom, where parties were hosted for dignitaries. It was a short walk from the library.
Zu: She was told not to fear, and that she wouldn’t be writing much outside what was around her neck. This made her look comfortable, but she was actually a bit sad. It might have been a scary thought to Ruby, yet she would have loved to try it if it would please Valmont. If she could, Ruby would have the cutest smile on her face. Truly an innocent soul, despite her abnormalities and her current state in Hell as a killer. As they were speaking, Ruby saw herself becoming transparent when her hands went missing. Unlike many times before, this actually didn’t matter to her. Ruby’s focus was so much on Valmont, nothing else mattered at the moment. Ruby didn’t realize it yet, but she had developed the most intense relationship with Valmont. He was something Ruby couldn’t have, a friend. Someone who wouldn’t turn their back on her, someone who saw her as more than just a killer. It was the only thing Ruby ever wanted.
Valmont asked for this… dance. Ruby never heard of that, it must have been something only fancy people in Hell do. It did interest her, so with a nod of her head, she agreed and stood next to Valmont, following his lead. She began to become visible again, in her hands at least, as it was the only thing that turned transparent. She clung onto Valmont’s arm as they walked, her eyes showing her daydreaming on this… dance.
Razorbackwriter: Down a long corridor that was just off the library, was the grand ballroom. This room was kept locked for most of the time as the hallowed hall was filled with treasured art and of course a massive chandelier. There were columns along the sides of the hall made from marble, that went all the way up to painted ceilings. Murals featured many of the previous Princes of Hell – a testimony to their leadership. The Ambassador paused a moment to take out a golden key and placed it into the lock, turning it so as to show Ruby the wonder of the ballroom.
Ruby’s easy acceptance to follow along gave Valmont hope that this was something she might like to enjoy. The doors swung open with ease, to give both the Ambassador a sight that would captivate. The ambassador looked down at Ruby, who was clutching his arm tightly. He couldn’t help but feel a touch of pride that he somehow had made her feel good about all this splendor.
A servant came in behind the pair, and bowed low.
“Shall I put on some music, Ambassador?’
“Yes, Gregory. If you would be so kind.”
The servant snapped his heels together and then strutted across the floor to where there was a beautiful phonograph. There was a stack of old records on a table beside it, and the servant carefully took one out of its sheath and placed it on the turn table. Lowering the stylus arm, after giving it a good crank, a soft waltz began to play. The sound was of course carried by the vast expanse of space within the hall. Valmont reached for Ruby’s hand and led her to the center of the room. Watching them, the servant took his cue to leave and this meant the Ambassador was alone with his charge.
“And this….is how we dance.”
Placing his right arm around her waist, Valmont took her right hand with his left, and then slowly began to make steps to lead her into a waltz. The music provided the perfect mood and tempo, and the Ambassador lifted his head back, speaking an incantation that had the chandelier erupt with a dazzling light. Around and around, the Ambassador would lead Ruby on this magical dance. If this had been the first time that she had experienced this, it may well give her a new found joy. The Ambassador was attentive to her needs, and he kept his eyes focused on hers as he danced her around the room.
This is the third part in “The Captain and Xzilia” story, written with dreamcircle125 of WordPress.
(Please be advised, this part contains adult content and reader discretion is advised.)
This is the introduction of my latest character, Lady Dominique De Shay into the Fable of Swords Series.
A pleasure dome for the nobles and royals. Where they may be washed, or buy a slave to care for them.
The Slave market and Spa
The outer courtyard was bustling with new arrivals from the ports. A group of blonde haired women with blue eyes from the far north were being herded into a covered area by tall slave drivers – all dressed in leather tunics. Their cries and sobs brought the attention of Tim, the servant of Lady Dominique, who had been speaking to a city official in the nearby garden. His lips drew into a thin line as he asked to be excused from the conversation, and headed over to see why there was so much noise and fuss. One of the slave drivers was about to raise his whip to silence one of the terrified girls, when Tim caught his arm and then pulled on it harshly.
“The Lady pays top money so that these girls are without marks or cuts. For each one you spoil, you can expect to lose two gold pieces.” There was a definite growl in his hushed words, but it was reinforced by the steel like grip of his hand around the slave driver’s arm. The driver wrestled his arm free, and spoke in a different dialect to the Eunuch. His tone was one of disgust that Tim would dare challenge him or try to insult him with the thought that the Lady of the Markets would dare not to pay the right price. But just as Tim was about to answer in the strange language, a red headed beauty emerged from one of the main buildings, chuckling whilst on the arm of one of the higher nobles. He had been a guest of the spa and was just telling Lady Dominique of the love he had for her special services.
“Lord Byron, you know that I am fully booked up. Besides, you can’t afford me.” Indeed, she saved herself for someone rather special. Dressed in a long silken robe, that only had straps of light jade fabric covering her breasts, and wearing a large pendant around her neck that rested just shy of her ample cleavage, she quirked a brow to see that Tim was in a heated discussion with one of her slave drivers. Patting the Lord’s arm, she bid him a farewell, and then strolled over with a smug expression towards the Driver and her man servant.
Tim straightened as he watched his lady approached, then snarled at the slave driver to show the proper respect. The Slave driver bowed and lowered his whip.
“Lady De Shay. We have returned from the north with eight new slaves for your perusal.”
Dominique gave the girls the once over, pleased to see that they had made the trip in one piece. Most appeared to be unharmed or marked, but they were dirty and needed washing and cleaning before they would be brought for further appraisal. The Mistress of the slave house walked up and down the line of the frightened girls, who did not understand common language. Dominique had a coolness about her, she had to show little emotion in front of these girls. They were regarded more like cattle, then people. One thing Dominique knew was that blondes fetched a higher price, and this would mean that she was in for a good return, if the girls were not spoilt.
“Hmm. Yes, they will do just fine.” The red head glanced back over her shoulder at the slave driver and his men. “Go get yourselves cleaned up, there is food awaiting you in the food hall, and your needs shall be tended to by some of my girls. These ones need to be processed.” Dominique nodded towards Tim, who then called for one of the red house heads to lead the girls away to begin their cleaning. The group of girls all hushed as they passed by Lady Dominique, who was now left behind with her man servant, as all moved on at her orders.
Tim watched as Lord Byron lingered and then bowed before taking his leave. He had his eye on Lady Dominique, but knew when it was time to go. Once he was gone, Tim shook his head and tutted at the wicked Red head who was now smirking like a Cheshire cat.
“Aha…I could whip you for such insolence. So what? He gives me pretty baubles…got a lovely string of pearls from the Asian sea.” she withdrew a black box from one of her pockets hidden beneath her silks. “It’s nice though….you want it?”Dominique tossed it over her shoulder to the man servant, who caught it on the fly. Tim pulled the strand out of the box, holding it up for closer inspection. “Gorgeous….”
“Yes, well….his gifts are one thing. His cock is another.” She rolled her eyes and held up her pinky – wiggling it. “I swear that when he tried to enter me once, I didn’t know if he had started or not.”
Tim spluttered and then could not help but nearly choke with laughter. Lydia threaded her arm through Tim’s and they strolled along the garden together.
“I know what I want, Tim”
“Yes…and sadly, he does not visit anymore.” Naturally, Tim spoke of the King, who was now quite ill. For once, Lady Domi looked sad. “He would if he could, but you’re quite right and I dare not go to him. Not with my cousins hovering about over his death bed.”
There would be a time when she would be called…..and she feared that would be sooner then later.
“This depresses me. Come, let us wander the gardens some more. It will take my mind off Him.”
Tim nodded politely and patted her hand gently, as the two continued to stroll along together.