Euphraxia de la Monde plopped down wearily on the stone bench at the palace balcony, heaving a somewhat unladylike sigh. Somehow, this ball wasn't so enchanting.

Suddenly, she heard a bemused laugh behind her.

"Zynnon." She tilted her eyebrow. "I thought you would be at the ball, scouting for some maidens to---bite."

"Surely you believe not those tales, Your Majesty. We vampires are just misplaced beings, feeding on broken dreams and nothing else."

"As if that were any better, "retorted Rae. ""What do you want in Faerie anyway?"

"To be honest with you, Your Grace, our mission has nothing to do with begging for your kingdom's mercy and goodwill. We just want some land—and lost souls."

"Well, you're in luck there. You're looking at one—and a pretty one too.

"Your Majesty, the accomplished Euphraxia Adelina Rosalind Ivana de la Monde, a lost soul?

"Hmph. As if you know everything about moi."

"Well, I don't because you won't tell me, " countered Zynnon.

"And why would I?" queried Rae.

Zynnon stared at her right in the face, a strange combination of curious and intense."

"I-I messed up the prophecy of the elements." Her voice sunk into a stricken whisper. "I killed my brother."

"Your Higness, don't flatter yourself with such ruthlessness. A gentle soul like you?"

"I was only five. I stumbled into the peak of his Vox Dominus Initiation. The spell backfired."

She was very nearly teary-eyed by then. Zynnon's face was still in the shadows, unreadable, darkness personified.

"They-they covered it up because that's what monarchs are supposed to do, sheild their people from the real pain—and maybe even the truth. They believe I can fulfill the prophecy, but I can't. I hold power, but nowhere near as much as dear Freddy's. I've let them all down before I even started, I of all people. "

By this time, Euphraxia's tears were falling freely and Zynnon was trying (awkwardly) to comfort her by holding her hand. They were completely unaware that there they were, light and dark easily coexisting with each other.

Then suddenly, bright purple eyes met dark blue ones and they both moved away.

"Fancy that," murmured Zynnon. "Light's blessing and darkness's seed."

Great golden orbs illuminated the darkness as both said nothing else, but the silence was broken by a bout of laughter from the inside."

Euphraxia turned away and said, "Well, I must return to the real world, to the ball."

Zynnon nodded soberly. "I suppose you must, your Highness, but first of all—may I have this dance?"