The Avowal of the Angels

"Are you out of your mind?"

Losing his temper was not something that commonly occurred with Xerxes, and when it did, violence tended to play a central role. His hand tightened on Taylor's pale neck after he had slammed her into one of the bedroom walls. She struggled, kicking and failing, while trying to take in air. "Do you have any idea the dangers you put yourself and Kaila in? How could you be so stupid?"

As she thrashed about trying to breathe, he squeezed tighter; his eyes flashed, "Do not even attempt to offer explanations. There are none. You disobeyed me. Something could have happened to both of you!" Seeing her begin to turn colors and feeling her hands, that had been clawing at his own, start to weaken, he snarled as he threw her aside. The blonde hit the ground coughing violently, and he merely stared at her before walking away. As his temper began to die down into levels of management, he sighed, "Do you have any idea how this makes Siyavesh and I look? Kaila would not have disobeyed him unless it provoked her curiosity—which I know you had a hand in."

At the thought, his temper surged again, and he let out a growl of frustration, "I cannot even fathom what was going through your mind. You know this castle is full of vampires that would love to have a bite at any human and still you insist on sneaking around, and not only that but you decide to enlist an accomplice! You might stand a slim chance against one vampire, Kaila would have none."

Taylor managed to quell her coughing enough to speak, "A-Are you angry… that I dis-disobeyed… or that… Kaila… could have… b-been h-hurt?"

He spun around, "What?"

"You," She paused before stubbornly standing upright, "You never once… mentioned me distinctively. It was… always 'both' of us." Before he could cut her off, she continued gaining more and more composure, "You placed more…emphasis on the fact that she was involved rather than me being injured. I think," she paused and then her jaw tightened, "I think something is going on between you and her—"

A strong slap to her face cut her short as she once more hit the ground. He lowered his hand as he spoke, "I told you before to watch your mouth, girl. You are truly under the delusion that I will not kill you should I desire it." He knelt down as he continued, "You would do well to keep your mouth shut about things that don't concern you."

Taylor glared at him as she cradled her jaw with her hand, blood trickling down the side of her mouth, "You did not deny it. So what, you love her? You've fucked her before? Are you fucking her now?"

His hand once again found its way around her throat as he lifted her off the ground, "Is that what this is about? Jealousy? You can't stand the fact that I might be getting satisfaction elsewhere?" His mouth took on a wicked smirk as she began choking, "Well, then. Let me ease your fears."

He released her as he shoved her back against the nearest wall. Not even waiting until she finished coughing, he yanked off her jeans, spread her legs, and shoved himself inside her. Ignoring her scream of pain, he used his anger to fuel his violent piston-like thrusts into her body causing her back to slam against the wall.

"S-Stop!" she managed to cry out.

"But I thought this is what you wanted. You like it rough." To accentuate this point, he wrenched himself out of her, spun her around before forcing her to bend over as he reentered her abused vagina. Just as he had suspected, she soon began to moan in mixed pleasure and pain. Her inner muscles clenched him tightly, and he closed his eyes as he allowed his inner emotions to find release through the physical exertion. Before long, Taylor reached her climax. He reached forwards and pulled her flush against him by her hair as he continued to thrust into her. Her gasps and moans the only sound besides his occasional grunts and the slapping of clothing on flesh.

That was something to think about.

Out of all the concubines he had ever had, Taylor had much better endurance. Most would pass out after their activities, or at least be so tired they could barely keep their eyes open. Taylor though would almost be… energized.

Again the thought crossed his mind.

Could she be…?

His sudden orgasm washed over him and made him see white.

"No! How could you?"

The words were screamed, pure panic and rage.

There was pain. So much pain.

There was laughter.

"Poor little angel."

Dark laughter.

"I don't share."

Something… something burned white. Magic? There was…

There was nothing more.

Kaila's eyes snapped open as she shot forward. Her heart raced as she caught her breath.

What… had that been?

"Kaila, are you all right?" Myra raced to her side, eyes alight with worry.

Already her dream was fading; Kaila could only remember screaming… and the sound of beating wings?


She blinked, "I-I'm fine. Just a bad dream."

"What was it?"

"I can't remember… it was just… violent."

Myra gave her a tender smile before gently stroking her hair, "You're safe now, Little Kaila. "

The human girl was silent as she was comforted. That dream… for what small flashes she could remember of it, it didn't seem like a memory, but then what could it be?


Out of the shadows of the room, her master stepped into view. His face stern and his eyes were colder than she'd ever seen them. "We need to talk," he continued as he walked over to her, "Myra, leave us."

"Yes, master."

Kaila had no time to beg the vampiress to stay before she disappeared. As her master reached the bed, she instantly moved away until her back hit the headboard.

"I said you would be punished. I hope you remember."

She took an audible gulp as her brain tried to frantically find a way to save herself, "Uh… oh! I'm feeling faint."

"Nice try." His gaze seared into hers, "I wasn't joking, Kaila. You embarrassed me in front of our Master and Xerxes. I can't let that go unpunished."

"B-But I didn't mean any harm. I just wanted—"

"There is no excuse. I ordered you to stay here while I was gone and you disobeyed."


"Enough, Kaila!"

"No!" Surprising herself and Siyavesh, she sat upright, "You and Myra are hiding something from me! That's why I left with Taylor. Even she could see something wasn't making sense. What is it? What aren't you telling me?"

His eyes took on a menacing glow as he snarled, "Are you accusing me of lying?"

Steeling herself to look him straight in the eye, Kaila responded, "Yes."

"Grave mistake, girl. No vampire will stand for a bride's insolence much less so from a human."

"Then tell me the truth."

A roar reached her ears before he launched himself at her. Her scream was cut off as Siyavesh pounced on top of her and snatched her throat in a vice grip. As her air supply was abruptly cut off, she began to claw at his hand in desperation.

"I warned you."

As his mouth descended on hers, his fangs tearing her tender flesh, Kaila's eyes widened as her body surged with adrenaline. The fear pumped her veins as her struggles intensified. Suddenly she heard voices in her head.

"Stop it! Please, stop!"

"That's it. Beg. Beg for me to stop. I want to hear you scream."

Terror surged anew at the echoes in her mind. She had to get free! She had to get free!

Without warning, her master let out a howl as his entire body became encased in blue flames. She could only watch in horror as he thrashed about in pain. She spat out the blood in her mouth and despite the pain she began to cry out, "Ah soh wah…"

In horror she realized she could not form words. Her lips were cut up and spliced. Speech was not an option for her anymore. Instead, in an effort to save him, she scrambled off the bed and towards the burning vampire. Maybe if she touched him again, with intentions to ease his pain, the fire would die away. Nonetheless before she could get close, Siyavesh lunged for her again. Barely avoiding him, Kaila ran out the door only to run right into Myra.

"Kaila! What is it? What happened to your face!"

Kaila wrenched away from Myra as the vampiress tried to examine her wounds. She could only scream and point to the room where their master's cries filtered out. Without another word, the vampiress vanished through the doors.

Knowing she could be killed once Myra realized what she had done, Kaila turned and ran. She had no idea where she headed as she raced through the dark halls. Her heart raced as terror once again began taking hold of her. She had nowhere to go. She had never been in the castle unaccompanied apart from the incident with Taylor. There was no place she would be safe. Still running she began wishing for someone to help her… only she knew no one could come.


Everything went dark.

Xerxes concentrated hard on the task at hand. Meticulously, he circled the seated Taylor ignoring her constant questions. If his suspicions were correct then, after so many years, he had finally found her. The idea seemed too surreal, too impossible. What would become of him, he wondered, after all of this? If Taylor was the one he was searching for, despite the cynicism of Vader, then his journey would end.

Wouldn't it?

"All right, Xerxes, for the last time: What are you doing?" His concubine knew better than to stand from the chair she sat on, but she twisted around to face him. Only once before did his suspicions reach such a peak with one of his captives. An experiment had been performed to verify, and needless to say, she had not survived.

He now had a dilemma. Were his suspicions strong enough to risk Taylor's life? If he was right, then the greatest treasure to be found on this Earth would finally be his. If he was wrong… he would have to find another replacement. Was it worth it?

There was only one way to find out.

He reached into his pocket and pulled out his cross necklace. It rose up from his gloved palm and hovered in mid-air before slowly drifting towards the human who stared at him suspiciously and with a little apprehension.

"What are you doing? Are you having me on?"

His eyes began to glow as the room darkened. A sudden thirst began to overtake him. The promise of having his much-sought after reward had him barely managing to conceal his sinister excitement.


"Haven't you wondered what I am, girl? Surely, you should be able to figure it out."

Her eyes widened as they caught the expression on his face, "What? What does that have to go with anything?"

"You shall see." With an almost imperceptible nod from him, the cross began to glimmer as energy began to gather.

The blonde was stunned into silence, her eyes impossibly wide as the necklace began to glow different colors, and the aura became visible creating a white halo. She opened her mouth and closed it several times as the necklace rose in the air and moved to place itself on her. However, before anything could happen, a thud from behind them stopped all activity.

Xerxes cursed as the necklace immediately stopped glowing and fell to the floor bringing light back into the room and leaving everything as it was. Turning to slaughter whomever or whatever had interrupted them, he was stunned to find Kaila's unconscious form sprawled on the ground.

"Kaila!" Taylor seemed to come back to life as she rushed over to the fallen girl, turning her over on her back before gasping in horror, "Bloody Hell! Who did this to her?"

He rose a brow as he took in the gored lips and fresh blood. Apparently, Siyavesh had been true to his word on punishing her; although, he had gone uncharacteristically easy on her by the looks of it. But why then was she here? Had Siyavesh sent her to him? Why?

"Xerxes, do something!"

"Silence." He walked over to the unconscious girl and waved a hand over her mouth. The cuts and blood disappeared as her lips healed to their normal pink state. The blood was removed from her clothes until all looked as it should. Yet, the girl was still out cold, and he needed answers. Picking her up, he made his way into the bath chamber where the pool had been already filled. Without another word, he dumped her body into the water.

"Are you fucking insane? She could drown!"

He reached an arm out and stopped the blonde from jumping in after her, leaving Kaila on her own as she instantly surfaced. She coughed violently as she struggled to remain afloat, but eventually made it to the edge of the pool.

Taylor quickly knelt down and helped the sodden girl out, "Are you all right, muppet?"

Kaila managed to control her coughs before giving a slight nod. She leant on Taylor for support as they stood up. He watched them in amusement even as Taylor glared at him.

"What the fuck was that? There must have been another way to wake her up."

"This was more fun. Come. I need her to answer some questions for me." Turning on his heel, he walked out of the bathroom hearing the girls slowly follow. While waiting for them to catch up, he sat down near the window. Taylor helped the shivering girl sit down in the chair in front of him and then disappeared into the bathroom presumably to find a towel.

"Explain to me, girl," he began, "why you're currently in my chambers."

"I-I don't kn-know."

He hummed as he idly tapped his fingers on the arm of his chair. Taylor returned with a large, gray towel that she draped over Kaila's trembling form. He waited as she tightened her hold on the towel around her before asking her again how she came to arrive at his chambers.

"I told you I don't know." Now that she was warm, her spitfire nerve returned to her. "I ran away because my master was burning alive because of your barrier," he raised a brow at her audacity, "and I didn't know how to stop it. I collapsed in some corridor and woke up when I almost drowned. Thanks, by the way."

"Correct me if I'm wrong: you are not possibly blaming me for something that I was ultimately asked to do to save your worthless hide?"

Backing down immediately at his tone, Kaila huffed. "He threatened to punish me and the spell activated. You had declined to give me instruction on how to stop it."

"Regardless," he waved his hand for emphasis, "that does not explain how you ended up inside my chambers."

"I already told you twice already! I have no idea how!"

He stood up, smirking at her, "Well, in that case, let me inform Siyavesh you are here. He must be so worried."


The twin cries startled him.

Taylor, who had been surprisingly silent through the whole exchange, spoke up first, "Did you see her?" She wrapped an arm around Kaila, "If you return her that bastard will kill her for sure."

"I fail to see how that is your concern, Taylor. Kaila is his bride. What he does with her is his own affair."

"Please, don't!" Kaila's gaze was pleading as her eyes met his, "He'll kill me. He'll be so angry with me. He'll kill me."

"And so you expect me to endure Siyavesh's wrath in your stead."

Nonetheless as Kaila hung her head, he found he had already come to a decision. "I will see what I can do," he found himself saying, "I make no promises. Wait here."

Hours later, Xerxes sat on the roof of a desolate church gazing off into the night sky. He had left Kaila with Taylor and had gone to speak with Vader who had agreed to let him keep Kaila for only one night. She was set to be returned to Siyavesh the next day.

"Why the sudden need to protect your former concubine, my Dark Angel?" The Vampire Lord had asked.

Why indeed. Xerxes sighed softly, Why did I bend to that girl's wishes?

"Could it be because you care about her, big brother?"

He snapped his head to the side, his eyes narrowing in distaste, "Raine."

The angel landed on the roof, his white wings furling behind him. His eyes glowed in the moonlight, "Xerxes."

He rose to his feet observing his little brother. It had been a while since he had last seen him, but he truly did not expect much change. Raine still looked like the younger, more benevolent version of himself. They had the same silver hair, although at different lengths, somewhat same features with only a couple of inches difference in height, and Raine was formed with a slighter built, but they truly were almost identical. Their one true difference lay in their eyes: golden eyes like the sun opposed to eyes the same shade as the mythical serpent who once tempted Eve. Xerxes knew that despite their physical similarities, they would never again be the "brothers" they once were.

"What do you want?" he finally asked.

The white angel gave him a faint smile, "You have never been happy to see me."

"Forgive me for the lack of gentility, I'll remember next time we're on the battlefield as enemies. Now answer me."

"Brother, are you coming to care for the human?"

"You are evading my question—"

"And you are refusing to answer mine."

Xerxes stepped close to his brother who did not so much as flinch away, "Raine. Answer me. What do you want?"

"You did not respond to my request to see you. I am sure The Vampire Lord gave you my message."

He turned away, "Every time you see me, you ask me the same question."


"And every time," he flew into the air, his wings beating the air violently, "I give you the same answer: I will never go back." But before he could take off, Raine's next words stopped him.

"The Final War is coming, Xerxes."

He refused to look back but made no other move to fly away.

"And it is coming fast. Faster than you imagine."

He faced his brother, "And why are you telling me this?"

"I simply wanted to warn you."

"Your concern is touching but it is not necessary. Do not waste my time with needless forewarnings."

"Needless?" Raine raised a brow, "You have two human girls in your care. I would be a little less cavalier if I were you."

Xerxes' eyes narrowed, "How did you know about Kaila and Taylor?" As a thought occurred to him, he clenched his fists in fury. In the next instant he appeared in front of the archangel using every ounce of strength not to attack, "Were you the one who helped Kaila almost escape?"

Raine did not recoil, "You think I would enter the realm of demons on my own? Where The Lord of All Vampires resides?"

"Since when have you been afraid of Vader?"

"It is not about fear, Xerxes, you know this."

"Then explain to me how she managed to come across Holy Water?"

The archangel shook his head before taking steps back, his wings poised for flight, "I cannot give you answers for which I do not have."

"Raine," Xerxes began warningly.

"I came to give you a warning. It is never too late to seek redemption, Xerxes. Do not think yourself unworthy of forgiveness. The Lord rejects no one."

"He rejected me."

"You rejected yourself," Raine flew into the air, his eyes steadily glowing brighter. He motioned to the cross of the church, the moonlight glinting off the silver surface, "Think about what you're doing. You are not bound to the side of evil. Return to us. You have the choice."

"I never had a choice," Xerxes snarled.

"You always had a choice. You just never saw it."

He couldn't stand to look at his once brother's face any longer. The eyes that knew so much unnerved him. He turned away, "Enough, Raine. I gave up that life long ago. You are no longer my brother, Heaven is no longer my home, and He is no longer my ruler. I am no longer an Angel of Light."

"Then why are you here?"

Xerxes whipped his head back, but Raine was gone.

He was left alone.

Blood trickled down across her throat, but she ignored it as she lay quiet on the floor. Everything was dark except what she could barely distinguish to the soft candlelight. Her body lay sprawled on the carpet, her face pressed against the soft ground, and her arm twitched slightly as it lay outstretched in front of her. Kaila didn't know what to feel. Siyavesh had been merciful with her… or at least that's what he said he had been. Her logical mind screamed that it was true, but her heart said something different.

Xerxes had returned her to Siyavesh in the morning, tearing her away from Taylor who had been taking care of her all night, telling her to be strong and promising to do her best to find a way to keep her safe. A small glimmer of hope Kaila could hold on to as her master had pounced on her. In all his fury, draining her of her precious blood in a frenzy until she could no longer stay conscious.

How could she have been so naive?

Just yesterday, she had been fine with being a human bride to a vampire—a creature which fed on the blood of the living, a monster. No matter how kind or gentle they had seemed before, Siyavesh had shown her what his kind were truly capable of. There had been no pleasure this time. Only pain.

She had no idea how long she had been unconscious and how long she had been awake. All she knew was that she was alone and that she was in agony. Her body refused to cooperate, and the throbbing of her neck extended all the way down to her feet. She could feel slow tears trickling down her face, over the bridge of her nose, and disappearing into the carpet.

Was this the kind of life that was meant for her? Was she truly prepared to be at the complete mercy of someone based on the premise that she owed him her life? Was one life debt worth the exchange of freedom?


"No matter what I do… I'll never be free. Just kill me… that's all I want."

Slowly images sped through her mind. There was running, everything was a blur, the moon, black wings, green eyes, Xerxes!

She gasped quietly, the imageries gone from her mind as her eyes opened. She was far too weak to do much else, her mind refusing to cooperate and piece together any sliver of coherent thought. Her vision swam as dark spots appeared in front of her, and breathing seemed to be the only thing she was aware of.


Was… was there a voice inside her head?

Kaila, don't give in.

Or was someone else with her?

For the first time she noticed a pair of stiletto boot-clad feet stop in front of her. The figure knelt down in front of her and gently caressed her hair away from her face before stroking her cheek. The touched soothed Kaila's senses, and the black spots disappeared from her vision. A black coat filled her sight and the stranger lowered her head to eye-level. Kaila took in gleaming, golden eyes and luscious blue-black hair.

You are healed.

With a start, Kaila sat up her hand going to her neck as her energy returned to her. She looked around the empty room. She was alone; her savior had disappeared. Had she imagined it? No, she couldn't have. The blood that had dried on her neck was proof of that fact. Pulling her hand away from her throat, she noticed the blood stains and closed her eyes in revulsion. She needed to get cleaned up.

Standing up on shaky legs, she made her way to the bath chamber and began rinsing her neck at the sink. She forced herself to ignore the water turning red and forced herself to look at her reflection. The image that greeted her broke her heart. Where once she had rosy cheeks, her skin was pale and sullen. Where once she had a healthy richness to her skin, she was now thin and wasted. Where once—

Without warning a deep shudder overtook her, and she braced herself with her arms on the marble surface of the counter as sobs wracked her body.

I can't do this… someone please help me.

Covering her mouth to stifle her cries, she felt panic begin to take over her body until she could no longer think straight.

She fled.

Luckily the door to Siyavesh's chamber was not sealed, and she slipped out. Her sobs echoed freely along the lone corridor, and when she reached the end of the hall she collapsed in front of a large statue in the form of a hideous monster. Curling up into herself she buried her head in her knees and wept.

It was some time later after her sobs had died down to occasional hiccups when she felt a gentle whisper of wind caress her cheek, almost like a puff of breath. She touched her cheek before assuring herself it hadn't been in her imagination when she heard soft footsteps. Tensing she turned her head and gasped sharply when she saw a little girl with hair of the palest blonde dressed in a pale blue dress with black dress shoes.

A child… but how?

Quickly, Kaila deduced the child was no normal human child. The little girl's skin was so pale it seemed translucent in the firelight from the sconces, and the eyes were a dull gray. Kaila finally found her voice to greet her, "H-Hi, what's your name?"

The vampire child only continued to stare eerily making Kaila uneasy. Her heart rate sped up as adrenaline began pumping through her veins. She was ready to run if she had to.

At last the girl spoke, "You, human, need to come with me."

"Um… wh-why?"

"Master has ordered you to be brought to him. I must comply with Master's command." A small hand reached for her, "Come with me."

Very hesitantly, but knowing she had no choice, Kaila placed her hand in the little girl's wincing at the ice cold touch. She tried to calm her breathing as she allowed herself to be led by the child.

Calm down, panicking isn't helping. I've panicked more than enough for the last few days, and the last thing I need is for the barrier to activate and be responsible for the death of a little vampire girl.

"Where are you taking me?" she asked instead forcing herself to at least act calmly.

"To the study of Master."

Okay, fail. She exhaled through her nose, which helped still her nerves. I'll try again. she cleared her throat, "Do you know why?"


"What's your name?"

"You talk a lot, human."

She bristled and burst out, "Kaila, my name is Kaila, not human. I only asked a simple question, trying to make conversation, so I don't freak out and make you burst into flames. You're welcome."

Even this did not pull a reaction from the little girl, and Kaila sighed deeply but resigned herself to silence. Her nerves were effectively calmed nonetheless. On the other hand after five full minutes, she could not take any more.

"Listen, I've never seen you before. How long have you…uh… been here?"

"Can you not keep quiet, human?"

"Kaila! K-a-i-l-a. Do you hear me calling you Vampire?"

"It matters not what you call me. My orders are to bring you to Master."

Silence fell over them once again, and Kaila huffed as she looked around her. Not for the first time she noted how dark and… unnatural the castle was. There was never anyone around, but she knew that at a moment's notice vampires would swarm in from anywhere in the castle. More time passed by until she grew restless as her anxiety grew. "How much longer?"


"Can you turn into a creature with wings? Myra could and it's faster that way."

"Yes I can, but I will not do so. Now silence, human."

"Well, why not? I know you're just a child, but I'm sure your strength is still above a human's. Besides, you're the one that said that you had to bring me to your master. Don't you think it would be better if—"

The little girl finally stopped walking and spun around, her eyes glowing red. "Enough! Do you ever stop talking? No, even if I could carry one such as yourself, I would not. Your blathering alone would be distracting enough without the added weight of concentrating on—"

Anxiety gave way undoubtedly for absurdity. "Whoa, wait a minute! Are you calling me fat?"

"It seems I have arrived just in time." Xerxes stepped around the corner like he always seemed to do, "I will take it from here, child."

"But Master asked—"

"I will speak with him. Rest assured. You will not be implicated in any way. Go."

Kaila glared as the little girl gave her once last dark look before walking away. "Kids these days," she found herself saying. Realizing who she was with she quickly back pedaled, "Uh, n-never mind."

He scrutinized her for a moment before merely turning back, "Come with me."

Knowing she could not afford to push her luck with him, she nodded and silently followed him. At one point in their journey, a thought occurred to her. "Oh, I never thanked you… for not giving me back to Siyavesh right away. So… thanks."

When he did not even acknowledge that she had spoken, Kaila stiffened. She was quickly growing tired of his arrogant attitude. He wasn't even valuing simple gratitude..


"Well, it's not like it helped in the end," she muttered to herself, "Siyavesh left me to die regardless."


Jerking away as Xerxes rounded on her, she realized her mistake in assuming he wouldn't able to hear her, "N-Nothing!"

She gave a yelp as Xerxes snatched her arm and jerked her into a small hallway off the main corridor. The only light being a single sconce in the corner, she began to tremble as her back slammed into the wall with Xerxes trapping her in between his arms. His eyes seemed to glow in the firelight, glimmering with unconcealed malice.

"You said Siyavesh left you to die, but I see you in perfect health. You're not lying therefore I must assume you are telling the truth. So tell me how it is possible, Kaila, that you have not a scratch or otherwise on you?"

Fear stole her voice from her throat. How could she answer him? Should she tell him the truth? That she was on the brink of death but a complete stranger who could have been a figment of her imagination saved her?

"Well?" he snarled leaning in closer to her.


"How?" he snorted in disgust mumbling more to himself than to her, "How are you continuing to heal yourself?"

This immediately piqued her interest, her fear forgotten. "Continuing? I've healed myself before?"

As if just having realized what he had spoken, Xerxes jerked back and made a dismissive gesture. Kaila, however, would have none of it. She needed to know. She needed hope. She needed freedom. "I've healed myself before? Why didn't anyone tell me? I have powers? Can I fly?"


She quieted at his snarl. He seemed to lose himself in his thoughts, his beautiful features grim. She could not help herself as she whispered, "Why is everyone lying to me?" His eyes met hers, and she found her lip trembling as tears welled up in her eyes. She hated feeling like such a baby, crying at every other moment, but she couldn't seem to stop. "Everyone thinks I'm stupid and that I won't notice, but I do. I know everyone is hiding something from me, but I don't know what."

Hot tears streamed down her cheeks as she continued, her eyes burning with indignation, "No one tells me what's going on, and I can't do anything about it because I can't remember anything besides my own fucking name!" She slammed her fists into the wall behind her. "Do you know what it's like to not remember anything? To not know if you have a purpose? To not have a life?"

His deep voice finally spoke, "More than you know, human." She sniffed as he shortened the distanced between them, "But you are not here to question or to demand. You are to do as you are told."

"But why? She pleaded in desperation, "Who decided that I don't deserve the option to do what I want? I don't want to be a bride anymore. I don't want to have a master. Please, I'll do anything else. "

"That is not—"

"Please!" She cried as she grasped his arms as she shuddered, "I don't want to ever feel him sucking on me like that again. I don't want him to threaten me, to hurt me. I don't want to cry anymore."

He had to help her, he had to. Kaila knew that her mind, her sanity, her only chance at remembering anything about her life depended on him. She couldn't handle anymore. She would die.

Xerxes's clenched his jaw as he stared down at the girl who had somehow, once again, appealed to a deep part of him he had sworn he had locked away. It seemed no matter what he did, Kaila would defy all boundaries placed on her. For a hundredth time he cursed the very night he had abducted her. Here she was once again, reduced to tears before him, expecting him to save her. Did she truly believe watery eyes and pouty lips would sway him? Did she think him that weak?

"Lord Xerxes, please. Please help me."

He sighed silently, "Kaila, you are distraught. You're not in your right perspective. I remind you that vampires are creatures who thrive on blood and fear. There are no exceptions, but I assure you that Siyavesh is as kind-hearted as vampires can possibly get. Brides are not replaceable to him. He likes to show them off and put this façade that he only cares for them in a sexual sense, but those closest to him know the truth. Each one is valuable and unique, and he treats them as such."

She shook her head vehemently , "No, you don't understand! He—"

"He punished you for disobeying? Made it clear that he holds you in high regard, that he may even care for your safety? Warned you of what would happen if you were caught by anyone else alone?" he replied sharply having had enough of her sniveling. He took a step towards her feeling that even a simple touch from him could burn her, "You have no idea how fortunate you are. Humans do not last in this place. Can you not see how lucky you are? The simple fact that you are a bride but remain alive without fear of being the next meal for any demons is proof of that! Siayvesh does not ask for much but your obedience and trust. Is that too hard for you, little girl?"

The dark angel turned away stopping at the edge of the small hall where it connected to the main corridor, "I cannot feel pity for you when there are many out there that are not even given a chance. It is high time you grow up, girl. When you are done blubbering and are ready to act like a mature human being, then I will escort you to see The Vampire Lord. I will wait at the end of this hallway."

Only a few minutes passed before he saw her walking towards him slowly with her head bowed. He straightened from his position on leaning on the wall as he observed her. She had said that Siyavesh had left her for dead, that he had sucked her dry, but there was not even a stain of blood on her. Perhaps, he reasoned, the fact that she was clad in a deep, red velvet dress hid the stains well. The short-sleeved dress hugged her mid-section nicely and flared out at the hips to form a soft star shape hem that flowed in waves as she moved. It truly was a nice dress and it showed off her figure nicely. However, the color did not flatter her. The color of blood on Kaila did not suit her.

"Are you ready?" he asked instead. She nodded in response as she took hold of a strand of hair and tugged. He turned the corner and began making his way to Vader's study knowing that Kaila followed silently behind him.

I don't want to cry anymore…

Stopping abruptly, he closed his eyes in annoyance as her voiced echoed in his mind. He turned around to face a very confused Kaila. He stared at her face for a long time looking deep into her dark, watery eyes.

"Is something wrong? Why are you staring at me like that?" Kaila asked, her palms pulled to her chest in a protective gesture.

"You will speak to no one of how you healed yourself. It is better for everyone if it remains a secret. Are we clear?"

"A-Are you taking me ba—"

"Yes, but only for a short time. I will find a way to convince Siyavesh to hand you over to me." He quickly annihilated the newfound hope that lit up her features as he took a menacing step towards her, "But in exchange you will tell me everything. Everything you think, feel, sense, and remember. I will find out how you keep managing to escape even the most fatal of situations."


"It is either confess to me or face the wrath of the most powerful vampires in this world. I will not save you."

Her face paled as the air in her lungs seemed to desert her. He knew what she would choose. She had no choice. Clearly handing her over to Siyavesh had not been the best decision on his part. It seemed no matter where fate led her, Kaila seemed destined for death… and yet she always managed to evade it somehow.

Finally she gave a short nod in response, and Xerxes explained quickly, "Now, I will make you lose unconsciousness and make it appear as if I had healed you. You will awaken in my chambers and from then on your body, mind, and loyalty are mine."

Not waiting to gauge her reaction to her words, he swiped his hand and her world went dark. He caught her as she fell and drew her into his arms before contemplating her next move. He would have a talk with Siyavesh and Vader. It wouldn't be easy, but he had always been quite convincing. First, though, he would have to take care of the vampire child. He couldn't take the slightest chance that Kaila's secret would be discovered.

Sorry, Vader, that's one less daughter you'll have to settle for.

Kaila's eyes opened and she took in her surroundings, immediately recognizing Lord Xerxes' personal chambers. She sat up and looked around her. She was alone. There was no sign of even Lord Xerxes himself.

What happens now, she asked herself, should I be happy?

She sure didn't feel that way.

"You will awaken in my chambers and from then on your body, mind, and loyalty are mine."

No… she didn't want to be possessed—owned, but what choice did she have? Lord Xerxes was better than having a vampire for a master… right? Taylor didn't really seem to mind.


Sliding off the bed, her bare feet touching the plush carpet, she looked around her as she called for her friend, "Taylor? Taylor, are you here?"

She swallowed thickly when it became glaringly apparent that she was alone. She clutched her hands tightly to her chest as her anxiety grew. What was she supposed to do? Wait for him? Try to escape?

"Your body, mind, and loyalty are mine."

Quickly breaking into a fast walk in an attempt to shake the thoughts from her mind, she rounded the bed and froze. Taylor lay sprawled on the ground, her body positioned in such a way that it seemed as if the girl had simply lost consciousness suddenly and fallen in a heap. Kaila cried out and raced over to her friend. With shaky hands, she shook Taylor in an attempt to wake her. The girl was still warm but very, very still.

"Do not waste your breath, human."

Xerxes appeared, his wings giving a single beat of agitation, as he walked towards her. "Taylor will join us when you and I finish our impending conversation."

Kaila's heart began to beat faster, and she forced herself to appear calm as she slowly stood. She swallowed thickly, "A-And what do you want to know?"

She barely had time to scream as he launched myself at her, pinning her body beneath his on the bed. His silver hair fell like a curtain around her as he replied in a low voice, "Everything."

Meeting his gaze, she thought, His eyes are insane…

You will soon join me, Little One.

Kaila gasped sharply, "H-How—"

Let me in your mind.

It happened much too fast for her to full understand, but she felt him enter her mind. It felt like a cool slice of a blade against her head, and the pain made her scream. It was gone in an instant, however, when Xerxes was wrenched off her by Taylor who had somehow regained consciousness.

"What the fuck are you doing to her? You bastard!"

Kaila let out a shuddering breath as Taylor took her hand and pulled her off the bed.

"Muppet, are you all right?" she asked as her eyes quickly scanned her body for any physical damage.

Before Kaila could reply, there was a roar in the room and everything darkened. She held onto Taylor tighter as the dim light of the room became eclipsed in shadows, the temperature dropping so their puffs of breath were visible. Xerxes rose, his eyes blazing bright green in the dark, and his wings unfurled and poised for attack. Kaila trembled as his voice filled the air, darker and lower than ever before.

"A grave mistake, Taylor. One that will cost you your life."

The blonde clenched her jaw and stepped in front of Kaila, "You once promised me freedom, but that is the last thing you have given me since you brought me here. Now you have taken an innocent girl," she motioned to Kaila with a tilt of her head, "and made her believe she was always meant to stay here and serve you."

"You are awfully daring, human. Will you be so brave when I cut you open I wonder?"

Kaila was horrified to see a smirk appear on his face and when Taylor did not seem affected, she could only marvel at the bravery the other girl displayed.

"What gives you the right?" Taylor continued, "The right to make us your slaves? Surely you're not using your fallen angel status as an excuse?"

This made Xerxes stiffen, his eyes widening before narrowing, his body tightly coiled ready to spring.

Kaila looked back and forth between the two. Fallen angel? What was that?

The blonde snorted softly, "Come on, you can't truly believe it was that great a mystery? I may not be the most religious Christian, but I know all about the fallen angels with the black wings. There is even literature about it, so don't presume that I will be fooled into thinking otherwise."

Christian? Black wings?

"Then I must congratulate you," He began slowly walking towards them, and Kaila's breath shortened anew, "You're the only one who has ever figured it out or at least the only bold enough to say so out loud."

Betraying her calm voice, Taylor took a step back as he drew nearer, "I'm far from stupid."

"Indeed. You might be worth keeping after all."

Kaila met his gaze, a knot forming in her throat. Will he kill me now? I don't even know what they're talking about…

"For now, you shall not interrupt while Kaila and I speak or you will be find yourself on your way to the afterlife faster than you anticipated."

"You were hurting her! If you plan to make a repeat performance, you better bet your arse I'll step in."

As Xerxes turned his attention to Taylor once again, Kaila's mind raced. Somehow she knew he could not find out about her secret protector. Now more than ever.

The Ball…

That voice! Again in her head! Her savior!

Wait for the Ball…

What ball, Kaila looked around frantically, hoping that she could see her protector hiding somewhere.

The Devil's Night Ball…

Kaila had no more time to wonder as Xerxes backhanded Taylor hard enough to make her spin around before slamming into the ground. As he advanced on her, the dark-haired girl said the first thing that came to her mind.

"C-Can this wait?"

He stopped, eyebrow raising in amusement, "Wait? We had a bargain if you recall, Kaila. The secrets you possess for your freedom from Siyavesh. I fulfilled my end, no easy task I assure you, and you think you have the option of backing out from yours? How incredibly stupid of you."

This sparked her ire, "No! It's just… can't it wait until… after the ball?"

The amusement left his face, "Ball?"

"The… Devil's Night… Ball…"

"And how is it you know of that event?"

Kaila began to inwardly panic before a recent memory came to her.

"Most vampires do not like wandering the corridors. They have business of their own to attend to whether resting or going for a hunt. The only time vampires gather is for special banquets and balls."


The vampiress nodded in response, "Yes. We actually have one coming up fairly soon."

"Myra mentioned it to me once. Right before I was introduced to Master Vader and to you. It was a brief comment. I still don't quite understand what it is."

"I see," Xerxes crossed his arms, his gaze suspicious as ever, but Kaila noticed how the shadows disappeared and the temperature rose. "And what relevance does this ball, a formal dance , have with your confession?"

That's… a good question, fuck it!

"Well… it is… a formal dance like you said. I imagine the… entire castle will attend." Suddenly the answer came to her, and words poured out of her mouth like water, "Present me. Present me as your own along with Taylor and it will prove without a doubt that I am yours and no longer belong Siyavesh. After that, I will tell you everything you want to know. You can even read my mind after if you are not satisfied."

"Are you insulating I am a liar, Kaila? I already told you that you are free from him." He strode over to her until he towered over the frame.

"It's a simple request. It's not much. I'm sure the ball is coming up soon—"

"Tomorrow night."

"Ah there! See? Not a long wait at all."

"You can be so incredibly peculiar, girl." He stared at her for a long time, studying her features carefully, "Fine. I will amuse you this once only, but if you try to escape or the thought even crosses your mind, you will regret it." He snatched her chin in a rough hold, "You will regret it, Kaila."

She could only manage a single, tight nod before he kissed her lightly on the lips. Before she could react, he vanished before her eyes. It was as if the air cleansed the moment he disappeared, and Kaila found she could breathe much easier. She let out a shuddering breath as her heart rate finally slowed down to a normal rate. She sank down to the ground as her muscles gave out beneath her.

"Well, I don't know what you did but brilliant work, muppet." Taylor gave her a smile as she cradled her red cheek.

"I don't know either, but I'm glad whatever it was worked."

"I'll say. Oh, sod it! That fucking bastard nearly broke my mouth."

Kaila leaned forward, "Do you need help? I can get a wet towel to put on your cheek from the bathroom. It might help it not swell up."

The other girl waved her off, "It's fine. I've got it sorted. It's not the first time he's laid a hand on me, the bloody pillock."

"Why does he hit you?" Kaila asked quietly, "You would think if you upset him so much he'd not bothered to find you at all."

"That is a question I've asked myself quite a lot lately actually." Taylor sighed and leaned her back against the side of the bed.

Kaila settled herself next to her, "You're really brave standing up to him like that. I was terrified."

The blonde chuckled bitterly, "Appearances deceive, muppet. At first, it was… some sort of adventure, a fantasy come true for me. I guess I've been so brave… because I never truly allowed myself to believe all of this was real. Now… now I'm starting to believe this is a nightmare with no way out."

Kaila knew that feeling well. A silence fell between them, each in their own thoughts before an earlier question occurred to her. "Taylor, you said Xerxes is a fallen angel. What is that?"

The other girl seemed to be thinking hard about something and replied absentmindedly "You know, one of the many angels who turned against God and sided with the Devil."


At this, Taylor glanced at her quizzically, "Our Lord? Creator? The Big Man Upstairs?" At the blank look, the blonde seemed to figure something out. "Oh, are you a Buddhist or Atheist or something? But surely you must at least know of the concept of God, right?"

"Am I what?"

"Your religion, muppet."


The other girl sat up straight and looked more serious than Kaila had ever seen her, "Christ. Kaila, what did they do to you?"

"What do you mean?"

Taylor covered her mouth with her hand as her eyes studied the floor intently, "I'm starting to piece together a puzzle I honestly don't think I want to see solved."

"I don't… I don't understand…"

"Look, Kaila," she twisted around and stared straight into her eyes, "The bottom line is that whatever bollock they're feeding you, it's a lie. I will stake my life that you were not born in this castle and that your memories weren't lost by a physical accident but rather they were tampered with."


"They made you forget. I don't know why, but we're going to find out, I promise you."

Kaila fell silent then not knowing what to say. Thoughts raced through her head as she tried to make sense of anything.

"To answer you're earlier question… an angel is… well…" Taylor bit her lip as her brows furrowed, "It's rather hard to explain, so please save all the questions to the end." At Kaila's nod, she began, "Well, here is the summary. Our world, everything in this universe, in made up of two forces, Good and Evil. God, our creator and creator of this world and everything in the universe, is Goodness in every single sense. Now, God , er, created angels: spiritual beings who are far superior to us in every way. They are… sort of his special children, they reside in Heaven—the place where God lives and the place good people go when they die—and they act as, er, messengers or agents of God.

"One of the angels God created was named Lucifer. There are many different versions on how this archangel fell from grace, but safe to say God had a plan and Lucifer disagreed. Long story short, this angel rebelled against God and was cast out of Heaven along with the other angels who had chosen to side against our Creator. The fallen angels were cast into Hell—a place of eternal torment and a place where evil souls enter after death. Lucifer became known as Satan, or The Devil, The King of Hell. He became Evil in other words. Because of this we now have the forces of Good and Evil constantly battling against each other."

There was a silence as Kaila tried to process the information. She blinked once, twice before Taylor inhaled deeply and tried to explain it again in a different way. Finally after a full ten minutes of back and forth confusion on both ends, Kaila spoke," So… Xerxes is one of the angels who rebelled against God? Making him… a demon?"

"Ye—well no, I'm not sure exactly. In theory, the answer is yes. It's rather odd. Why he is allowed to roam the Earth freely much less with vampires, I don't know."

"Vampires are… what exactly?"

"Demons. The ultimate servants of Lucifer."

But… Kaila began to wonder before a sudden question occurred to her, "Then… where do we come in?"


Kaila motioned at herself and the blonde.

"Oh! Well, God created humans many years later. Our exact origins are a little dodgy to be honest, but here we are nonetheless."

"And are we good?"

"Mostly." Taylor settled herself back against the bed, "We have evil humans too… or good people that make bad choices."

"Do you…do you think vampires or fallen angels are like that too? Good people who made bad choices?"

"Don't even think about it." The blonde turned to her sharply, "Do not even consider having sympathy for them especially after everything they have put us through. Vampires are demons, they are evil. There is no question or doubt about it."

Kaila shook her head, "I don't think so. Myra doesn't seem—"

"Muppet, you've been completely wiped clean. You are in no condition to pass judgment." At her crestfallen look, Taylor squeezed her arm in comfort, "Don't worry. We'll get your memory back somehow… in fact…" The blonde began looking around before dashing over to the bookshelf located near the window, "Ah! Here it is. Of course he would have it, it's so obvious now."

Kaila blinked in confusion when Taylor pulled out a thick book and opened it up. As she flipped through the pages, she said, "Now this should help—oh bloody Christ, of course he'd have the King James Version from the 17th century. No matter, muppet, we'll muddle through. We'll only read the stories associated with demons and angels anyway, so let's see… we should start with The Book of Revelation.

"Bugger, I haven't really read this section in ages, what page is it? Six hundred and…" She trailed off as she began reading silently to herself before shaking her head with a pout. "This isn't going to work. This version needs its own translator." Replacing the book, she began searching once again, "There must be another version here. Don't worry, Kaila, we'll figure it out. Once you have an idea of who you're dealing with, we can start planning our escape. Our first try didn't work, but if one doesn't succeed one must try again as they say—"

"Oh, really?"

Kaila froze as Xerxes appeared in a wisp of what seemed like black smoke. Although, his face was as emotionless as ever, she knew, just knew this would not end well. Taylor had tensed as well, slowly turning to face him, her eyes darting in Kaila's direction.

"You seemed to be quite busy, Taylor. Don't let me interrupt. By all means, continue. You were planning to escape." He crossed his arms apparently waiting for a response.

Taylor decided to give him one, "Obviously we're not staying here forever. Kaila and I deserve better. You may be stronger, faster, more powerful than us, but we'll find a way." Her eyes hardened, "However many times we have to, we'll find a way."

His smirk faded as his eyes took on a malicious glint, "Is that so? Tell me then: how is it possible to escape… when you're already dead?" +

Kaila had no time to cry out as the fallen angel raised a hand and began to clench his fingers. In less than a second, the room grew dim once again as dark, distorted voices filled the air.. She felt cold and empty as she huddled into herself, eyes wide.

Xerxes' eyes glittered as his wings unfurled, and in front of her eyes, the blonde girl was levitated into the air. Her hair and limbs spread open as her mouth opened in a silent scream. Kaila could see the terror in the other girl's face and only managed to make eye contact for a few seconds before the other girl… shriveled up. Screams, female and blood-curling, reverberated through the room. Taylor's firm, smooth skin twisted into sickly gray as it stuck to her bones. Her pupils blended into the white sclera as her hair became tendrils of white. Her beauty and youth warped into a cadaver until there was nothing left of the former blonde girl.

Without wasting an effort, Xerxes lowered his hand, and she was propelled through the window behind her. Kaila screamed as she raced forward but could do nothing as Taylor fell along with glass to the fog below. She covered her mouth in horror, Xerxes' chuckles echoing behind her, as she looked out at the dark sky.

Taylor was dead.

"You're a monster." Her whisper sounding especially loud as the room returned to its original state.

A gloved hand grasped her shoulder and squeezed hard, "Never forget."

End of the Chapter

Child of Philosophy