/the bird cage/

…chapter one

She couldn't remember the last time she had seen the sunlight or what her family looked like anymore. She couldn't remember what sleeping in a soft bed felt like either. This was her life from now on and since she was nine. For the last ten years, it had been a lonely life for her and a sorrowful one as well.

"Sing something for me. Nothing depressing," her captor called from the desk he was sitting at. She looked at him blankly from her cage for a moment thinking of a song that would please him. He looked up from the document he possessed on the table and his misty blue-green eyes meet her light brown ones.

"Well? What are you waiting for?" he said gruffly, frowning. She looked down into her lap and let out a heavy breath as a soft melody flowed freely from her lips in a river of hopeful words. Words that she no longer believed in herself. Her eyes spoke a sad tale of detachment, as her voice seemed to carry on that exact hopelessness that the cheery lovesick words could not hide. At least not from him.

There were only a few and far between nights when he became impatient with her and this was one of those nights. He was her kidnapper and master since he stole her away from the last Christmas party her parents held. The last Christmas she would even spend with her family. She had actually befriended him at her father's birthday party two years before he abducted her, when she had met him as a friend of the family. At a delicate age of seven, it seemed as though he held a soft spot for her. A sort of favoritism that made her older sisters envious and livid whenever he would bend down and pick her up, teasing and fussing playfully at her. She never thought of him as a threat, but a mere friend. All three of them (her sisters of course) had an infatuation with him and were jealous of the friendly gestures and teasing conversations that they shared. After all, it was her voice that drew him to her, innocently. Neither of her siblings had her beautiful voice or soft, almost golden, brown curls that earned every adult's heart.

He rubbed his temples and reopened his eyes to look straight at her. His glare was menacing and dangerous as his frustrated mannerisms gave her fair warning to stop. He was very picky about her music and the way she sang. She couldn't understand, though, why it was that her voice had intrigued him so because now it seemed as though he couldn't stand it. Wasn't that the main reason she was locked up in this cage? Why it was that he stole her away from her family? She missed them all dearly. Even her sisters, no matter how much they fussed and whined out of jealous rage after every social event they attended. Every other day, besides that, they seemed to ignore her as if she didn't exist. And she didn't anymore.

Her master had taken good care of her aside from the cage she was locked up in all day and all night. He fed her, clothed her and let her bathe. He even sat down every so often to play piano for her. She remembered the New Years party where he played one of his own written pieces on their grand piano in the sitting room. And what a beautiful performance it was. The whole time he played, though, she noticed he never took his eyes off her and seemed to be looking straight through her own eyes and right to what her thoughts at the moment were.

She was a little spooked by the new behavior he possessed that night. Since the very moment he walked in, she watched his eyes travel across the room until they met her eyes. This time, though, he didn't smile like he usually did. Instead, he kept a close eye on her the whole night. His gaze was an uncomfortable one and she decided not to approach him that night with a usual greeting she typically did at every social party her parents held. That night she would learn of who he actually was and what he had in store for her.

It wasn't until later that night when she went upstairs to use the bathroom in her room that he followed her up there. She didn't even realize his presence until she heard her bedroom door shut and lock behind her and turned around. He looked at her with an unrecognizable look. She didn't know why he was looking at her that way the whole night but she really didn't like it. Neither of them said anything as he stood before her looking down to her angelic face. She was so innocent. An innocence that he seemed to yearn for, ever since the first party that the Mossers held. The first time she skipped over to where he was seated in the family's spacious room where they seemed to eventually hold all their parties. He recognized a connection from the start.

"Is there something you're looking for Mr. Char?" her delicate voice sounded through the room reaching across to him. He bent down to her height (kneeling down with one knee) never breaking the gaze he held over her. Her eyes never left his either.

"Sweetie, I want to talk to you about your voice. You know you have a beautiful voice when you sing?" The words smoothly rolled off his tongue as he gave her an intrigued stare. She wasn't answering. His lips smoothed out into a soft, welcoming smile. He would have to lure her into the conversation.

"You know, you never said hello to me tonight…downstairs when I arrived," he led on with a higher pitch. Just to try and bring out playfulness in his voice in order to make her feel comfortable. It worked. A wide smile spread across her face with her lips closed.

"I thought you were too busy," she added softly, her smile turning into the same serious look as before. In contrast to her, his warm smile was still there but his eyes seemed to change emotion.

"I could never be too busy for my little sparrow." He added in his own little nickname for her as his eyes clouded over when he took in the sight of the clock behind her. Realizing it was already nearing 12:30, he had to move quicker with this.

"Everyone loves your voice you know that?" he said, slightly changing the subject back to where it should be.

"Yes. I mean…I suppose."

"How would you like to come to my house and sing for me?" His face seemed to grow darker with each passing second. Other than that, he seemed to give an otherwise charming smile. She still had yet to answer as the frown on her face had yet to leave either. He had to say something else to convince her. Something that would drive her to him.

"Look here, love. I talked with your father earlier and he told me that you've become a problem to him. A burden on his shoulders." Her eyes met his with a hurt stare. He continued.

"I know this may be hard for you to understand, but they've been wanting to get rid of you. You've become a financial problem to the household. Your mother and father were deciding on giving you up to an orphanage…"her eyes began to dart from his face to the floor, " but I told him no. I said I would take you in." He paused for a moment giving her a sympathetic expression.

No, this couldn't be true. Her family wouldn't do that to her. They loved her and would never leave her. Isn't that what they always told her?

"Come with me, sweetheart. I promise that I will take care of you. You'll never have to worry about money or if anybody still loves you if you're with me. You'll live in a mansion, like a princess in a castle."

"You want me to sing for you?"

"Yes. That's all I ask." His features were soft as he held out his arms for an embrace. She walked over to him and hugged him as tears began to spill from her eyes.

"Shhh. Don't cry little sparrow. Don't cry over them. They never loved you. Never the right kind of love and affection that you deserve. I'll show you what love is."

He promised her all the love and affection the world could offer. As long as she stayed by his side. As long as she sang for him. Now here she was. Held prisoner in a cage settled in the corner of the room.

He stood up from the desk and pushed the chair in as he made his way over to the massive bed he hardly ever slept on. Why couldn't he let her sleep on it? He hardly used it. The only time he used it was if he took a short nap in the mornings and late afternoons, and feeding. That was the cycle he took to. Take a nap for energy to lure his next meal into his bed. She never watched either way but still held sympathy to whoever crossed his hunger path. Herself included. She always kept that thought in the back of her head. One day he would lose complete control and kill her. That was the way things were living with a monster. He wasn't really a monster but he certainly acted like such at times.

By now he had taken off his shirt, laying in bed in nothing but his trousers. He was leaning back on his elbows looking straight at her with a devious stare but a serious face. At times she thought that he liked to try and seduce her just for laughs. He liked to toy with her mind, this much was true. Other times he seemed quite serious about his comings and goings of lust for her.

At night he would come to her after his feeding and gaze at her through the cage. He seemed to always mutter something to himself about "soon" but she never paid any such mind or acknowledgement to him. Other times he would reach his hand through the bars and run his fingers through her hair or stroke his hand gently across her cheek. Ever since she turned a more mature age of 15 did he eventually find a desire for her besides the voice inside of the body. It was all strange to her since she had never thought of him like that. True, he was very handsome and completely charming at times, she always saw him as the friend of the family who took her in out of sympathy. But the more time she spent with him, the more her mind's image of him seemed to morph.

She still had the same sorrowful face she had on earlier.

"Don't look at me that way. You put yourself in that cage, sweetheart. If you hadn't tried to run away from me I wouldn't have you locked down, ball and chain," he said with a knowing look.

"Will you ever let me out?" Her voice sounded fragile and on the verge of breaking.

"I don't know. Will you ever heed the things I tell you? It's not just you running away. It's everyday when you either mess up the song or you don't answer me when I talk to you. You know I can't stand talking to a wall, love. Knock on wood, I've slept under one since I could breathe," he winked. She turned away avoiding his stare. He was looking for her to smile and if she was, she'd be damned if he saw it.

"Why do you have to be so stubborn? You know it makes you look more appetizing that way," he said with the obvious play of words. She rolled her eyes. He was obviously playful today besides his frustrated mood earlier.

"I have something to tell you. Do you want to hear it?"

"No, but I have a feeling you're going to tell me anyway."

"No, really. You don't have to listen. I mean I was just going to talk about the surprise I was planning for you. In fact, it has something to do with you and me. Minus the cage and everything." Her eyes darted back to his figure on the bed.

"So I take it you want to hear?" She heard the smirk in his voice. She nodded her head yes.

"I'm planning on moving us somewhere else in Europe. Perhaps travel around till we find an adequate spot to settle down in. Hell, we can go anywhere else but Europe if that's what you want." His eyes were gleaming. She couldn't believe what he was saying. Leaving Birmingham? The only thing that was registering in her head was "travel around". He had a hopeful smile, yet not so wide, as if he was waiting to see if her response would be a positive one.

"Why?" she asked bravely. She had to know his motive. His smile drooped a bit at the corners but still held strong.

"Well…why not. You're tired of staying in that cage and I'm tired of staying in this damn city."

"But if I never come out of this cage, neverless the house, how am I to know the difference between here and Africa."

"That's what I'm saying, love. We'll chuck the cage and you'll be alongside me the whole time. Besides, it's not safe for my kind here anymore. The authorities have already caught on and rumors are spreading like wildfire of vampires stalking their families. Pretty soon they'll all be coming for us," he added with a softer tone as the smile turned into a sort of nostalgic slight upturn of the lips. His eyes were still gleaming. He was very hopeful.

"Will you come with me?" She huffed. As if there were any other choice for her. She nodded, smiling slightly as well. He lay back against the pillows with a sigh of approval.

"Love…" he called out. She had no other choice but to answer.


"Sing me to sleep. Something beautiful." He closed his eyes in satisfaction, as her choice of song was perfect. It lulled him to sleep until he would wake up later for a meal. Eliza fell asleep in the cage. His dreams were filled with thoughts of her, his little sparrow.

Later that night she awoke to a high pitched giggle and moan.

"Hold on, I have to go take care of something. Stay here," she heard his familiar voice sound out in the otherwise quiet room.

"Should I turn on a light or something?" That was the not-so-familiar voice. A voice that, after tonight, would never be heard again.

"No not yet. It'll just be a second." As he said this his voice seemed to grow less and less distant. He came to her cage. As usual he reached for the cloak to cover the cage. Not that the victim would have noticed either way since the lights were always turned off, but he had done this since she was a little girl in order for her not to become frightened of whatever exactly it was that she might see. He never looked at her when he covered her cage. He was too hunger stricken to think of anything else but luring his meal to him. Tonight must have been different since he looked straight at her and reached his hand in to touch her face. His hand passed over her eyes to shut her eyelids.

"Close your eyes, sweetheart. This won't take long," he said softly. She kept her eyes closed as she heard the heavy cloak hit the brass bars of the cage, it's weight barely affecting the stability of it. When she did open her eyes she noticed that the cloak had not fully covered the whole cage. There was a small crack that was uncovered and she could see both bodies on the bed. Both had desperate movements to fulfill their awaiting desire. His desperation was completely different from hers but she needn't know that.

She watched as he kissed his way down from beneath her chin to her collarbone. She knew that she shouldn't be watching this but she couldn't help herself. She was completely intrigued to see what he would do next. She had never seen him feed before. Sure she had heard it, which she was sure was ten times worse, but it was completely different to what she saw.

She continued to watch as he pulled his lips away from her skin as he moved lower a little bit waiting for her to look down at him. When she did, she could tell he was probably giving one of the most mischievous smiles he could conjure up. What looked to be a playful, teasing mood soon turned abruptly ugly as he jumped up at her neck in a flash and ripped his teeth at her neck. She let out a bloodcurdling scream that made Eliza jump back in her cage and let out a soft, barely audible yelp as well. At least it would have been barely audible had her master's senses not been on high alert.

With his mouth still tearing and drinking at her neck he turned his head at an angle and looked towards her direction where he heard the little yelp. His senses were clouded to anything but feeding when he had quite the idea to jump over there and feed off whatever was over there. He was up for the game tonight.

He turned his head back to the victim's neck as he tore his teeth away from the open, messy flesh, pulling out more in the process. He reached his hands around her head as he snapped it out of place and twisted it off to the side in an unnatural state. Normally he just would have picked at the remnants and moved on to the other prey but this time he wanted to put more fear into the little animal's heart tonight. He crawled stealthily to the covered cage as his hunger grew. It was a different hunger than before, though. He had a hunger for a little more fun tonight.

**A/N: You like it? Think it sucks? Review to let me know.