"So you know what we are? Well I must say, that is actually a weight off the shoulders," Gabriel says with a slightly confused smile. "Tell me, Michael, how did the lovely young lady come to know of you?" Gabriel asks with a hint of curiosity.
"Well, it's a bit of a story," Michael explains. As he tells his brother, all of what has happened in the past few weeks. Tatyana remains in the room while both playing with Sasha and looking through the books on the shelves. She cringes at the points when Michael mentions her adopted family. She could feel the slight rage and sorrow from Gabriel. Yet the most intriguing part of the story that caught Gabriel's attention was what happened between her and Marius. About her not being quite human and having no way of finding out what she is.
"Well, that is quite unusual. Everything about her seems human," Gabriel says with a pondering expression.
"Yes. But Marius is the expert on blood and not even hecan tell what origins she comes from. He said that it's nothing like he's ever known," Michael explains. They look at Tatyana as she continues to play with Sasha. "Ah, yes, that reminds me. We're going to take a trip to Russia this weekend. Hopefully Tatyana can get some clue to her family," he tells Gabriel. They smile at her again as they hear her giggle from Sasha's licks.
"Well, if Marius has no idea what type of blood it is then it must be something ancient. I'll tell you what, I'll ask for any information I can when I get back to Sanctity. Hopefully someone there might know something," Gabriel suggests as he is infatuated by Tatyana's childlike charms. Michael thanks his brother and Gabriel turns to leave. As he starts for the door, Tatyana stands up. He walks up to her and says, "If you ever need me, just call out me name. I am entirely at your disposal." And with that, Gabriel leans down and lightly kisses her lips. She blush as he pulls back, bows his head as in saying goodbye and then leaves.
"Well, I guess you have a new fan," Michael says playfully mocking her. He walks up to her and she gives him a mildly shy smile. Then he lifts her chin up with his hand. "Don't worry, we will find out who you are. I promise." Then kisses her on the forehead.
"Thank you for helping me," she says bashfully. Then they hear the door creak open a little. They look and find Damien in the doorway.
"Are you ready?" he asks. Tatyana nods her head and walks out with Damien. As she steps out of the house, Damien picks her up and opens his black wings. She is always amazed at how beautiful and shiny his feathers are. He flaps his massive wings as he pushes the two of them higher and higher into the air. They soar over the town and she can't help but be enchanted with the beauty everything holds from that distance. After a while, they finally land in a shaded alley as Damien retracts his wings. "Let's go then," Damien says as he grabs her hand and leads her out of the alley. When they get into the light, she looks up at Damien and can't help but notice the light shade of pink to Damien's face. The amusement causes her to grab a hold of his arm as they stroll along.
As they walk, she notices people staring at the two of them. She starts to get a little bashful and pulls herself closer to Damien. "Don't vorry," he says, sensing what's wrong. "You are just too beautiful for zem to turn avay from." His words make her even shyer but she starts to become more comfortable. "Here ve are." He stops in front of a large clothing store with the title Gravewood over the door. There's a sign in the front that reads Closed for Private Party. They meant what they said. It will be just Tatyana and Damien there for shopping. The whole store to themselves.
"This is so amazing!" she exclaim as she enter the front door. There are wall-to-wall designer clothes of all styles. It has everything from elegant to Goth. Winter wear to summer wear. It even has a library, a cafe, and couches for waiting in different sections of the store.
As Tatyana stands there gawking, a young woman in her early 20's walks up to her and Damien. "Good afternoon, Sir Damien. I take it this is Ms. Volkov?" she asks with an enchanting and seemingly intelligent voice in an English accent. Damien gives a little nod. When the woman looks at Tatyana, she gives her a sweet smile. The woman is about five-foot-nine with heels and has auburn colored hair that reaches her mid back. Her radiant skin brings out her intense green eyes. "Hello Ms. Volkov. My name is Lizell. I'll be assisting you today," she greets Tatyana with a warm smile and a slight curtsy.
"Dobre dien," Tatyana replies with a little bow of the head. Soon, three more people walk up. There's another girl who looks to be Lizell's twin sister and two men who are also twins. They are about five-foot-ten with light brown hair and hazel eyes.
"This is my sister, Mary, and our coworkers, Jeffery and James. They will also be here for assistance," Lizell says as each of the others bow as they are introduced. "So I understand that you are here for winter wear." Tatyana nods as Lizell begins to lead her to one section of the store. "Well that would be over here. We have one of the largest selections of clothing in this town. Sir Marius is quite the gentleman. He has great taste when it comes to ordering the clothing."
"You mean Marius orders all of this clothing himself?" Tatyana asks with a bit of astonishment. Though he always did look good in his choice of clothing, you wouldn't really think about a vampire being in the fashion business.
"Oh yes," Mary says. "Everything in this store had to be approved by Sir Marius before it even made its way in here. He is very thorough." By the way they speak of Marius, Tatyana can tell that they are indeed infatuated with him.
Before she can speak, Lizell stops her and looks her over. "Let's see. Blue eyes, light skin, golden-brown hair...hmm, yes, perfect." As they pull Tatyana through the winter wear section, Lizell and Mary start removing item after item from the racks.
Mary starts putting clothes against Tatyana to see what they would look like on her. "Yes, perfect. This is exactly your look," she says with an enthusiastic smile. "Marius's designs are all perfect on you."
"Marius's designs?" Tatyana ask intrigued.
"Yes, a lot of the clothes here were designed by Marius himself," Lizell answers with a proud smile. Now that was a total shocker.
As Tatyana endures her walk-through of the store, Damien fallows close behind as he talks with Jeffery and James. When she looks back at him, he gives her a reassuring smile. She smiles back and continues to be Lizell and Mary's dress doll. Soon after they reach the end of the clothing store, Lizell and Mary push her into the changing room.
"Okay, let's see how this looks," Mary says as Lizell starts to undress Tatyana. Mary pulls out a thick pair of stylish khaki pants and a beautiful shirt-coat with mock-fur trimming. "Now put this on."
Tatyana takes the clothes and dresses as Lizell and Mary help with the buttons. "You look so gorgeous. I knew this color was perfect for you," Lizell says as she admires her good judgment. They turn Tatyana to face the mirror and there was absolutely no way she couldn't agree with them. She did look good in that outfit.
"Now let's show you off to Sir Damien," Mary says as she pulls Tatyana's hand and opens the curtains. Damien was sitting in chair between Jeffery and James. She started to go red in the face when he looked at her with wide eyes. Jeffery and James started cheering. It felt good to have their approval but it also made her blush even more.
"That's not all. We still have other clothes for her," Mary says as she pulls Tatyana back into the changing room and changes her clothes again. This continues until she has been through all the selected clothing from the girls. They even had her try on some evening gowns, swimsuits, and other clothes that made Damien blush in his seat. It wasn't until two hours later that they finished their little dress up game. After the clothes were wrapped and bagged, Tatyana and Damien said goodbye to the sets of twins and continued their looks around town.
"That was a lot of fun, was it not?" Tatyana asks as she walks beside the heavily stocked Damien. She decided to remain in an outfit that Mary and Lizell insisted on her wearing. It is a beautiful maroon shirt with glitter patterns of waves and is a low v-cut and shows off her navel. Her pants are a dark blue with an elegant rose pattern up the right leg in the same shade of maroon as her shirt.
"Yes, uh, Gravevood's designs suit you quite vell," Damien uncomfortably stutters out as he blushes from Tatyana's smiling face. She begins to skip along and twirl in front of him with a huge smile on her face. Damien was smiling as well. That was, until he spotted a couple of hooligans walking towards them. Their eyes were fixated on Tatyana and as she noticed Damien's smile fade, she looked to see what the cause was.
"Hey, sexy. Want to go out sometime?" one of the three said. A disgusting grin plastered on his face.
"Ya nye zniyu shto voi pisaits. Ne zniyu Anglisky izik," Tatyana says in Russian, trying to convince them that she doesn't know English.
"Ooh. A foreigner. That's hot," another one says as he becomes uncomfortably close to Tatyana. She takes a step back only to bump into the chest of the third person. "Where you from, sweet chica?"
"Get avay from her," Damien booms with very visible frustration and anger. Even as he held the shopping bags, you could never mistake him for a whipped puppy.
As the three thugs look up into the intimidating eyes of Damien, they soon find themselves stuttering out words trying to make sentences. "Who...uh...w-what d-do you...um..."
"I said, get avay from her," Damien said in a deep, calm voice that can make any creature shutter. The men stepped away from Tatyana as Damien walked passed, enticing her to follow. She does.
"Yeah, whatever," one of the men mumbled under his breath, barely audible. They quickly scurry away in hopes to not anger the very brawny giant.
"Spaciba, Damien," Tatyana lightly speaks with her head down, as though she is ashamed.
"You should have been able to handle ze situation. Especially since Michael, Marius, and I have all been training you to take care of yourself," he says in a matter-of-factly tone while continuing to look ahead as he walks.
"I'm sorry," she whispers sadly as she feels that she has let him down in some form of way.
Damien steps in front of her, causing her to stop and face him. Damien lifts Tatyana's head up by her chin and looks into her eyes. "Do not feel bad about it. It ish new for you to be able to take care of yourself. You lived a life of forced shervitude and alvays had to take the pain. You just need to let yourself realize zat you have a right to not let people push you around. You have ze right to not take anyone else's crap anymore," Damien says cogently.
Tatyana smiles and nods in agreement. "Okay," she says and they continue their tour of the city. The only other time Tatyana has been in the city was during the mesmerizing point in time brought on by the night.
"Are you hungry?" Damien asks as they find themselves near a small cafe.
"A little," Tatyana says, though she spoke too soon. For at that moment, her stomach rumbled quite loudly. "Okay, maybe more than a little," she says while blushing red from embarrassment. Damien chuckles softly and leads her to a seat on the patio of the cafe. After giving the young waiter their orders, they partake in light conversations.
"So, Tatyana. How are you liking your shtay so far?" Damien asks as the waiter brings out their drinks.
"It's like Sanctity on Earth. Especially compared to where I was before," she looks away with a painfully nostalgic gleam playing on her face. Damien gives a silent sigh, knowing exactly how her life used to be. He watches as she takes a sip of her fruit juice and a faint yet warm smile flatters her lips.
"Vat are you zinking about?" Damien asks with true curiosity.
"Just about how much I love being with you and the others," she answers as she glances over at him then quickly looks away. Her cheeks turning a light shade of pink. "I, um, I'm sorry. It's just that, well, I'm really grateful to you three."
"And ve enjoy having you vith us," Damien remarks as he places a hand on hers, steadying them. She had just noticed that she was slightly shaking and calmed down at the soft touch of his skin. His origins as a fire demon were apparent from the heat of his body. It was such a soothing sensation to have his skin against hers.
Damien then pulled away as the waiter came up to the table, allowing him to place the ordered dishes on it. She was a little disappointed at the abrupt separation but didn't allow it to show on her face. Instead, she smiled and thanked the waiter, then enjoyed the rest of her time with Damien.
A little over two hours later, they arrived back at the manor and Damien helped to carry the bags to Tatyana's room. As they climbed to stares, they passed by Michael who was headed in the direction they were coming from.
"Ah! You're back. I hope you had a wonderful time," Michael says, quite hurriedly.
"Da!It was the best," Tatyana says with some enthusiasm.
"That's great. I'm happy you enjoyed it." He quickly kisses her forehead and turns.
"Where are you off to, Michael?" Tatyana asks as she sees the sweet angel rushing to ready himself for a visit to Sanctity only knows where.
"Well, you see, a friend of mine is on earth and I wanted to catch him before he has to leave again. I haven't seen him in forever so I wanted to be able to spend the rest of the time he has left with him," Michael says as he struggles to fix his tie.
"Well, I hope you enjoy your time," Tatyana says as she shoos his hands away and fixes his tie for him.
"Thank you very much, Love." He kisses her on the cheek then looks at Damien. "I'll probably be back tomorrow morning. Marius is also out. He had some important business plans to do and I doubt he'll be back tonight. I suppose that means that you have the house to yourselves. Take care of her," Michael instructs Damien who gives a simple nod of his head. Michael smiles and they wish each other goodnight as Michael leaves and Tatyana and Damien continue to her room.