"You're mistaken." Pierre said strongly.
"Am I now? Then who is the lovely girl behind you?" Joel questioned with a smugness. Pierre turned to see, in full strength, Avery, "But wait, it's your meat girl and she seems to be a vampire." Pierre could feel himself losing control of his emotions. He knew he would soon snap. He turned to his brother.
"So it seems. Well, now that you have what you came for, you can leave."
"Brother, some things are obvious, but you wish me to leave so I shall. Goodnight Pierre," and then he turned to Avery, " and goodnight to you, lovely dark angel." Joel stood slowly, his eyes lingering over Avery. He nodded to Pierre and, finally, slipped out the door.
Pierre's blood ran cold.
"If he knows, he'll tell Acarea." Pierre informed her, turning to face her.
"I know," she smiled sadly, " I understand things so much more now, but Pierre I don't think I'm strong enough. Not just what I have to do to get there, but what will come after I have gotten there." Pierre took Avery's hands in his own. She tried to turn away. She could feel emotions inside of her spiraling.
"I know you're strong enough, Avery," He said. She smiled weakly then turned and went back through the house. Pierre heard the glass back door shut.
Pierre sank into the chair his brother had previously sat in. He leaned forward resting his elbows on his legs. His head lay in his hands. So many things swam in his mind. He knew Avery was strong enough. He knew she was smart enough. He knew that she was beautiful enough. He sighed angrily and closed his eyes.
He could feel her presence in the room and hoped she would just go away. Instead she touched his shoulder. He flinched raising his head. Her hand snapped away.
"She is lovely," Keira observed.
"Yes," He agreed, it was no use lying to her, she had made him, and she knew when he was lying.
"You know you can never-
"Don't bother Keira. I don't want to hear of it. I know that her and I can never be."
"Why do you hate me so?" her voice was full of hurt. Pierre glared at her.
"I was the first mortal you changed and I trusted you, but you betrayed me. And changing someone is painful, you were right. It was a pain worse than when I myself was changed." He laughed without emotion.
"I went through all that too," Keira cut in.
"Yes," he began standing, "with me. Only you left me alone. I died alone."
"Pierre I'm sorry I was still so young I -"
"I don't want to hear it," Pierre said through gritted teeth, " and I don't care who you are, I am Avery's guardian. Unless it has something to do with her ancestor leave her be." Pierre turned and left the room, slamming the door behind him. He walked slowly down the hall, his fury diminishing. He stopped, the wall against his back, he slid to the floor, feeling the impact of Keira. There was something different about her, ever since she had returned after leaving in the storm. But maybe she was changed all along. The Keira he remembered would have never had the conversation she had just had. She kept to herself. Years as a vampire on her own had done this to her. He thought a moment more. She had changed, but he couldn't just trust her again. The time of trust had long been gone. Pierre looked down the hall at the closed door that Keira was still behind. He stood and walked in the other direction.
The ocean spray misted around Avery and the warm water circled her feet. She fingered her fangs. It was so weird to her. She understood being who she was more than what she got from any book or person. It was like a baby being born knowing exactly how to breathe, how to survive, except she didn't need to depend upon anyone to survive.
Avery laughed aloud.
"What's so funny?" Pierre asked from behind her on the beach. Avery looked down at the water whirling around her knees. She turned to Pierre.
"Wouldn't you like to know," he rolled his eyes at her comment, smiling.
"Do you mind if I join you?" he asked.
"This ocean is big enough for two," she said spreading her hands out in invitation. She turned back to the ocean, barely glimpsing him taking his shirt off. He began wading out.
"Pierre!" Avery shouted in alarm, looking at him like a mad man, "Pierre you're mad! No one should be out in those waves let alone at night."
"You seem to forget we live for the night," he replied calmly. He stood, the water just below his bellybutton and came at her, grabbed her by waist, and began pulling her out with him. She allowed him, feeling no need to worry with him at her side.
When she could no longer touch, she gripped his shoulders. They moved with the waves, moving further out by way of the ocean. Avery looked above her at the blackened sky. The moon watched her carefully it's shinning knights still standing at order, guarding the black above and shadow below. She smiled softly. Pierre looked at her, maybe for the first time, really seeing her. He saw her green eyes shimmering and her dark, almost black hair, trying to cover her face from others. He didn't just see what her face held, he saw what her eyes held. She floated there, her hands upon his own shoulders, her head tilted up towards the moon. He was connected with her now, his blood was in her veins as was hers in his and he felt stronger from the strength her blood held. But it wasn't just what her blood held, it was the way she had stood, not really understanding everything, but willing to do what somewhere someone thought was right. He gently brushed her hair out of her face and away from her eyes. Avery leveled her head to look at him. He allowed himself the comfort of her eyes in his. Avery pulled herself, barely noticeably, closer. Pierre felt her move closer. Avery couldn't breathe she felt her air being held in her own throat, afraid to move, afraid the moment would pass. Her chest was at a halt, and his hands on her sides wouldn't allow her to think. The spirals that were his eyes drew her in and wouldn't let her leave. Pierre painfully looked away. He knew he couldn't, knew he shouldn't, but he found his eyes drawn back into her own.
"We are leaving for Ireland in a few hours, just before dawn," Pierre said shattering the silence.
"Why?" Avery asked, bobbing in the water with Pierre.
"Acarea's castle is there. Once we are there, we will penetrate the castle and kill her."
"How? I thought the only way to kill the Vampriess was a large ritual."
"But Acarea isn't the true Vampriess, you are."
"What's the plan?" Avery asked
"There isn't one," Pierre admitted, "There is no reason to have one, we can lay it all out, but in the end something will go differently from what we wanted. The only thing we need to have is our objective."
"But there will be people in the castle not very happy with us for killing her," Avery pointed out.
"Yes but those who were afraid to oppose her will finally come out and the others without a leader will be killed. There will be no other option." Pierre explained. Pierre found he was still inside the pools of her eyes. Avery nodded her eyes holding his.