Prologue - 19th Century - Paris, France The night was cool and crisp and the moon was full. She smiled, almost basking in the light of the street lamps, a poor replacement for the sun she once knew so well. She ran her hands down the front of her gown, admiring the black lace trim and delicate bead work of pearls striking against the rich green of the material. The two-inch straps hugged her forearms and the stiffly boned bodice dipped low into her bosom.
It had been a wonderful evening.and Victor was so handsome and commanding in the way her lead her about the dance floor in his silver and midnight blue suit. He didn't laugh at her misstep during the waltz for he knew how foreign the new dance was to her. He understood the longing she felt for the dances of her native land, the old country.but it had been hundreds of years since she had seen the mountains of Transylvania, and everyone was dead and everything she knew died with them.
Then, something akin to a clap of thunder in her brain sounded and she dropped to her knees as an actual clap of thunder sounded in the heavens. She pressed her palms to her temples as the sky began to cry, "Igor." It was almost as if the mentioning of his name brought him to her, his eyes sunken into his ancient skull, his skin so pale she could see the veins thrumming stretched out over his bones.
His clothes where rumpled and bloody and through his open mouth she could see his fangs glistening.fresh blood at the tips. "Igor stop! No! Not again!
Stay away from me!" Then she turned and fled down the alleyway, but he was far faster and soon had her flat on her back on the soaking cobblestones, his mouth to her neck. She screamed then all went black.
She awoke a little time later in the same position, the rain soaking her though to her cold pale skin. Blood running in crimson rivulets from the twin puncture marks on her neck, staining the rain soaked ground. Her dark oak hair a messy halo twined around her head, and splayed across her cheek.
He knelt beside her, cupping her face and brushing the hair away, "My child.I'm so sorry.
I did not mean to hurt you." Her voice was raspy and weak, "This reminds me of the night you brought me over, all those years ago.an accident. You were so thirsty, like you were just now.so thirsty that you hurt me." She struggled to her feet, her black gloved arms stiff at her sides, "I don't need you anymore." He reached out to touch her cheek but she flinched away, "What are you saying?
Are you Victor's now?" Her fangs slithered out, "I belong to none! Get away from me." He smiled, revealing his own, but his blue eyes were cold and glinted off the light that reflected off the angular planes of his face. "Fine, if that is what you want, but know this: you will always need me.
You will always feel me. I created you.
I am the only one you have left. Good bye, Kestel." Then, in the blink of an eye he was gone, and she was truly all alone in the world.
Chapter One - Present Day - New Orleans Kestel pushed the lid off of her coffin and stretched, "Mm, good morning New Orleans." Yawning she walked out of her dark windowless coffin-room into her bedroom and over to her rather large chestnut wardrobe.
After dressing in an airy knee-length dark purple dress she went into her small living room, throwing open the ruby red curtains revealing the night sky. Smiling and humming quietly to herself she lit the large 5-pronged candelabra. It was made of iron inlaid with silver and onyx and was one of her favorite possessions.
It was almost as old as she was.
The dark purple candles smelled of musk and rose with a hint of pepper. There was a knock at the thick dark oak door, and after looking though the peephole she threw it open, her eyes opening wide as she thought to herself, Why is he here? Why must he come see me.now? But she didn't speak those words, "Victor Stronghelm.to what do I owe the pleasure of your presence this evening?" He smiled, his teeth glittering and white against his bronze skin.
She's so beautiful. She quickly noticed that his crisp white button-down was undone a couple buttons revealing his buttery smooth, hairless, skin, and his hazel eyes seemed to see straight though her.
He was far older than even she was, and he both thrilled and terrified her, "Do I have to have a reason to see you?" She had known him over a thousand years, but every time she saw him he made her feel both like a child and a woman all at once. She smiled, ducking her head, letting her thick hair fall like a protective curtain across her face, "No, please come in." Looking around at the semi-disorder of the room, she quickly said, "I am sorry for the clutter, I just woke up.
If I had known." She didn't get to finish that sentence for Victor had closed and locked the door behind him and taken her slender form in his arms and was breathing in the heady mix of both her perfume and her skin.
"It's alright, dear." he murdered as his fangs grazed her neck. She trilled against his cold firm chest, her head lulling back as the memories of their only time twined together in the dark flashed through her mind.
It was here in her house, almost a year ago, when they finally let what they had mutually craved for centuries happen, but then after he stayed away.until now. Why, why again, why must I want you again, it's been to long."You tease me, Victor.
You stay away for so long and now at last you return only to torment me." He laughed, his voice rich and throaty, "Oh I know," he said as he pushed her onto the near-by couch. I didn't come here for this.not now. She landed lightly with a sigh of frustration, "If you aren't here for.well.that, then what do you want with me?" Victor cast around the room, taking in the details like the black stone fire place and grey marble mantle-piece covered in both candles and candle wax that melted over it like stagnates.
He smiled, fanged retracted, "Patience cher, good things come to those who wait." He sat beside her, his expression now serious and his once playful eyes sullen, "I come baring dark news from the coven. There has been a staking.one of the elders is dead." Her pouty mouth fell open in surprise, "What? Who? When.why?" I hate being the one to tell her this, but she would have wanted it this way.Victor took both of her icy hands in his, and staring down at them he said, "It was Marlena.last night.
We don't know why." No, no, it's not true! It can't be true! He looked up abruptly as a fat red tear drop slashed on his hand, "Cher don't cry, please don't cry." She screamed, a horrible aching sound that vibrated angerly in her chest before bursting through her lips, "No!" He quickly grabbed her trembling form, and used his palm to press her head against his chest, "We will avenge her death, I promise you."