*** FERGUS’S POV ***

  • Silva! 

I head to her village in the woods. Trees pass by as a schadow as I move quickly among their trunks avoiding everything on my path. It is hot here. It is silent. Too silent. My heart races. Clouds of thick smokes hinder me from seeing. My heart pounds so strong so others could hear it if anyone was near me. But I am alone. And she is somewhere there. She is in danger. Where are those villages? I have never been there. Rhia told me, Silva has a lot of them hidden in the woods.

  • Silva! Where are you?

I see a few small houses. The village is empty and dark. It was also reached by flames but not all. I jump and quickly check every house. Noone. 

I turn left and enter deeper into the woods. It’s a hot hell. Hot burned branches still crack and impinge to follow on me. Smoke is a curtain covering the view on my way. 

  • Silva! Silva! 

My voice disappears between trees. Where is she? If she.. If they.. Anger climbs my chest and I curl my fingers into tight fists. One more village. This one has lots of bigger and smaller houses. Some of them hang very high and are untouched, but those ones down here.. 

  • Silva! Can you hear me?

Flames caught and ate everything on their way. No green houses. No doors and bridges. If someone was there, they didn’t survive. I jump up on a few larger stones and reach upper houses. Empty. Empty. Empty. My frustration grows with each house I check. Just on the ground I notice her crown and piles of ashes all over around. Oh spirits!

  • Those f*cking dumb heads! We let them live and that’s how they repay us! 

I angry head back to the castle grounds until I haven’t done enything stupid. I feel on the edge of losing control over my body. My emotions boil and I try to stop my rising bloodlust. My breath is heavy but quick and shaky. My fingers are bent and I can’t straighten them. I feel my neck crane forward. I try to bring my head up, but my neck doesn’t respond to my efforts, I just hear how my neck’s bones make some terrible sounds. I smell them. Huuumans.. My legs bring me the direction my nostrils reassure I should take. The last thing I expect to see Rhia on my way. But there she is. Right in front of me. On still warm ground in the woods just after the flames. She is dirty, kneels. Ground still lets out grey smoke. 

  • You?! It’s not safe here.

I roar at her, but she doesn’t respond in any way. 

  • Let’s go!

Humans have already got my daughter. I am not ready for more sacrifices tonight. Rhia! I notice she holds a dark haired man in her hands and looks at me with the mad painful look. She cares about him. 

  • I will take care of him. Go! 

She hesitates. I have a feeling she knows him, but I don’t. Fire did a lot of damage to him. His skin looks awful. He heals. He will survive. 

  • He is not yet ready to go. I stay with him. Will make sure he is safe. 

I reassure her. She struggles to make a decision and with each moment I become more impatient. They look at each other as they share gulps of live’s air. The man opens his mouth and lets out short words. He urges her. Voice is weak, low, and to my surprise, very demanding. It reminds me of Vampiria in an instant. His look at Rhia is the same one Vampiria used to look at me. His voice is her voice. I close my eyes for a moment, shake my head slightly trying to brush memories. His eyes plead, body tries to show strength. Finally she leaves and he is at my mercy. 

  • Can you move? 
  • I need time. 

I help him to stand up and he slumps against my shoulder. I wrap his waist and pull his body closer to me. He is weak. Not just fire or heat tried to break him. He looks in the direction Rhia disappeared.

  • You will survive. Otherwise she never left you here. 
  • Will she be safe?

He looks genuinely concerned, especially for the man who just met her.

  • Her way is safe. For now.
  • Do you know her? 
  • Sure. Gorgeous, right?

I say dreamy, relaxing with a small smile. He doesn’t answer. Turns his head to the side. His breath comes in shorter inhales and his grip on me tightens.

  • Are you together? 

He catches me by surprise. I remember me watching her next to the pool and our hours on the hill and at the seaside. How should I answer that? Why does he care? 

  • She belongs to the other. 

His face grimaces. Just for a second but my eye catches it. What does he hide? 

  • Where do they live? 
  • It’s not far away.

This man is suspicious. Rhia told, he is Him. But.. Despite the bond they have, they for some reason are not together.

  • Don’t worry, she has a safe place. 

We lean against the green trees to have some rest. This place looks without danger. It’s so peaceful. 

  • Does he take good care of her? 

He looks sincerely concerned but his voice hides threatening. Hairs on my skin reacts to it instantly.  

  • She is in good care. 

I feel him double-checking me. Cold washes my back. He is definitely a warrior and I am sure, I don’t want to meet him in full power. He becomes stronger.

  • You are better. I have to go. 

He regains power quickly. He is not an ordinary one. Vampiria’s face crosses my mind again.

  • What’s your name? 
  • Call me Fergus. 

I answer leaving him behind without looking back. How can their eyes be so similar? His gaze leads to fear somewhere deep in my gut. So familiar. I used to like it. Oh, Vampiria.. You will meet our daughter. Rhia advised me wisely, but I lost my chance to speak with her. I brush some tears. My stubbornness.. And most likely fear to be rejected again. 

  • Where is Rhia?! 

On my way to the castle I am completely lost in my thoughts as the voice catches me. 

  • Mm? 
  • Fergus! She entered the woods in a hurry just after the fire! Did she..?

Andvari cracks under those words unable to say out loud. 

  • No! I met her. She left first. She has to be back here. 
  • She hasn’t come back!

I turn and run down the hill towards the woods where I saw her the last time. 

  • Humans..

I am fuming.

  • HELL! 

It’s a painful cry out getting deep through your skin into your bones. 

  • COUNT yourself DEAD!

I let out words through the bitten teeth and head towards Rhia’s cry. One dead daughter is enough for tonight. They have to pay. Humans have to pay..

I speed up as a wind towards the cry I just heard. It landed and stayed in my mind blocking my thoughts, my surroundings. I am led only by my instincts and nothing else is left inside me. My eyes register warm moving bodies as I enter the village. My hands land hard on the running flesh. It tears off with a pleasant sound as smoothly breaking seams. One by one without hard resistance villagers give up under my control. Their blood drops flow in little rivers down my arms and deep into my throat. I don’t even gulp that red treasure. I am here not for the feast. Not to own anyone or anything. Not to share. I am here for my true daughter. The only one thing in my whole life which made me leave my comfort zone and follow my deepest needs. Red and warm moving down my cold skin. 

  • Impressive!

I turn my eyes towards the voice, which appears to be a muscle man. He brushes his blond hair from his eyes and cleans blood leftovers with his thumb. He is not a servant. I stand alone surrounded by piles of torned fresh flesh yards around me.

  • Do you want to join us?

I answer nothing as I launch for the woods towards the castle.

  • Guess, see you around.

Words catch me far from behind. My job is done. Finally my heart is lighter. Rhia escaped. She wasn’t here, as so her screams ended. I have more time to find her.

Continue reading chapter 13