There is a certain feeling that I get when my wife looks at me, when I feel her mouth on mine, when she bites my lower lip. I cannot put my finger on it, but its not one I feel with any other. My devotion to her is eternal. I’ve never had a love like this; ever. And I’ve searched for it for my entire life — both my mortal one and my immortal one. I can only hope that my daughters grow up to desire the love their parents’ share and do not settle for anything mediocre, as I had for so long in the past. I can only hope that my son grows up with a clear picture of what a real man should be, a partner to his lady. One that is in it with her, rather than a bystander. But let’s not talk about my kids dating… no. Not right now.
*at Marius’ office in Romanus Manor*
I called Armand to talk about the events that occurred in Paris that had Armand so fumed with anger. Locking him and Va’lis in the gun cellar when Maharet announced they had taken his wife in addition to Carrie had been a wise move on my part, but perhaps my execution of it all was not. There is too much history between Armand and I that lingers and interjects in our relationship. Where as with Va’lis, we have more of a clean slate. I knew this conversation was not going to go well when he walked in and immediately said, “I can’t expect an apology from you now can I?” To which I replied, “I had to keep you from going after them on your own.”
I loaded our car up; Merida changed to the back seat, she was holding Astoria’s head in her lap trying to soothe her. Astoria had been beaten and then nearly drained. We had our medic trying to infuse her with transfusions of human blood but nothing was working. Her mortal body was just too weak. She was hemorrhaging internally from her injuries. Merida was now caressing her face and hair while she let out a tear or two. She loved Astoria for her kids loved her just the same.
I got into the car on the other side in the back and closed the door. The car was now moving. “We can’t let her die, not like this. this is our fault. Mine really, they took her to get me to talk. Had I not been so stubborn—” Merida broke down. Watching my wife’s sad heart was too much for me, I pulled Astoria to me without a word, carefully holding her on my lap. “This is not your fault, let it be me she hates for condemning her to this life,” I told my wife before I bit into Astoria’s neck and drained what little she still had. I ripped into my wrist and pulled it up to Astoria’s lips, letting my blood spill into her mouth. Astoria roused a bit, just enough to latch on and drink fully from me. Merida watched, crying still feeling so guilty for it all.
Blood, chaos, war, what beauty in it all. I watched as the beautiful Danielle Draco fell from the tower into the courtyard and gracefully to her feet. Immidiately I sent Louis and Armand inside to fetch Astoria. I knew they needed me to distract the bastards down here. I quickly flipped out a heavey compact axe I newly aquired and set my sites on Danielle. She was the strongest, and quickest of the lot here. We fought in the most barbaric ways, axe against knives, fists to fists. Her blows hurt but thanks to the blood of Akasha, I indured.
I swiped my axe and landed a blow across her belly, her scream rang through the courtyard. Amroth had appeared from inside carrying the body of one of Armands maids. And soon came to my aid. Together we backed the girl into a tight corner where she could not escape. Two halfbreeds came at me to defend Danielle..with two strokes I decapitated their heads from their shoulders in a bloody mess. As I flicked their blood off my axe I continued at Danielle. Blow for blow once more we were evenly matched.
Lestat, Louis, and Armand bust through the front gates after taking out the outside guards. Maharet and Khayman had gone off to do rescue Merida. Armand was confident that Maharet would return his wife to him. As they come up to the courtyard they shoot down the guards now flooding the it; Draconian forces. A combination of mortals and half-breeds, easily dispatched. The vampires that would follow would not be so easy.
Just then they heard screams coming from the skies and see Danielle Draco falling to the ground; she straightens herself just in time to land on her feet with a loud thud. Lestat goes in for her and they face off… The Bratty Princess of the Draconians vs. the Brat Prince of the Romanus’; this should be interesting.
Louis sat and waited. He was watched the window like he longed for the sun to come through it. Maharet had returned and Marius was running after her. He could hear what they were saying, or rather what Marius was saying.
Lestat sat up and went to follow Marius, he longed for news of Merida whom he had gotten close due to Saphira’s talents. Louis was quick to grab him, “Where do you think you’re going?” Louis questioned his lover and maker. Lestat stopped and looked at him, “Why do we wait on the elders to make their move?” “Because those are the rules, Lestat. We follow the rules. And until Marius comes in here to tell us to move, we sit. We wait.” Louis’ loyalty annoyed him but Lestat knew he was right. To question Marius’ or worse Maharet’s decisions would shake the foundation on which we built our coven and all the bloodlines in it.
Back at the gun cellar, Marius and Armand go in on each other and a full screaming match ensues behind that now sealed door. Even Cherry has to stand in the middle and break it up a few times. All the while, Va’lis sits in a corner thinking of his next move. He really desired to get his magic working on Earth, to no avail but none the less. The thought of it helped him calm down, regroup, and focus. And when Va’lis is calm, he’s even more dangerous. Something Pandora’s taught him to do. “Look at a problem from all angles,” she would say to him, “Focus on all the countermoves.” How he appreciated her teachings in these moments. Va’lis had come to realize that a proper sire was an invaluable part of his life that had been missing for so long. He missed the bond with Pandora; now more than ever.
The entire family was walking out of several elevators from the world gate 5 levels beneath them. They were in the 1st level basement which was turned into meeting rooms and conference centers. Marius called out to Armand, “Armand! Armand! Va’lis! Where are you?” No answer. Lestat went to the other levels that have personal quarters and searched for Armand and Va’lis. Lestat came back to Marius in the command center room, “Nothing. They are not here,” he reported. “God dammit!” Marius grew angry. “Such defiant children! I cannot believe Armand would not follow my instructions,” Marius slammed a fist on the table.
“Relax old man,” Va’lis voice echoed. Marius looked up to see both his sons completely soaked from the sewers at the Tower. “Could you be any more stubborn?! I specifically said, you wait. You cannot go encountering the unknown and possibly facing off with 3400 yr old vampires without backup! You’ll get yourselves killed!” Marius screamed. Va’lis opened his mouth to say something, but he had nothing. Armand jumped in, “Look we need to confirm that Carrie was in fact being held where our reports said she was; visual confirmation of the extraction target. Besides you know Va’lis wasn’t going to just sit around. If I hadn’t gone with him he would have probably gotten himself killed. At least I could keep him from stepping on a landmine.” Marius sneered, but he knew Armand was right. Va’lis chimmed in, “She’s definitely there. In case you wanted to know.” His sarcasm was not lost on Marius.
Marius had given us both clear instructions. We are to wait for the rest of the family before attempting to start our recon mission. Yeah, right? Like Va’lis was going to wait. Him and I had formulated a great plan to confirm that Carrie was being held in that old familiar place. The Tower of London is a historic place having held many Queens prisoner before their beheadings took place in the famous courtyard. More notably the death of Queen Anne Boleyn, second wife to Henry VIII. The tourism to the place was a great cloak to what really was held behind closed walls. The Draconians had effectively purchased the rights to the tower through various entities and ghost corporations, as they did with much of the territory they held. It is heavily guarded of course, but it does have nooks and crannies that modern day prisons do not. Luckily, we had a full map of the place.
Marius sits in his lab under the Lair, the Catacombs. Armand walks up and Marius stops what he’s doing. “Word?” Marius asks. “Yes, and you are not going to like this. Not one bit,” Armand responded. Marius turned to face his eldest childe, crossing his arms. “Well?” He asked inpatiently. “They are holding her in the Tower, right in the middle of London proper,” Armand said. Marius rubbed his chin a few times. “So they do have control of the Tower as we suspected before. It is there they help Pandora captive,” Marius said. Armand nodded. There was a moment of silence between the two men. They knew they couldn’t let Pandora near the place. “I’ll keep Pandora here, leave Bianca with her,” Marius said, “and we need to summon all our elders for an emergency meeting.” Armand nodded and was off to gather the elders of the family.