Romania

18 years ago

Her heart beat wildly in her chest as she ran through the dark, dense woods; the bright, glowing, red eyes and growling following her closely. She clutched the precious bundles in her arms and took a sharp turn, changing her direction.

Her breathing was labored, and her legs and arms felt as if they would fall off. Her lungs burned from the long run and tear stains glimmered on her cheeks under the light of the full moon.

A shadow jumped in front of her causing her to scream and came to a halt. The same creatures surrounded her in an instant. She took deep breaths, looking around for a way to escape. She nearly fell to the ground in defeat, but a thought hit her—she can't do that; she has a duty.

The next thing she knows, all of the shadows had fallen to the ground, arrows in their backs. Wind whipped through the trees and they turned to dust, flying with the breeze.

She looked into the brush, for a sign of her rescuer. A tall figure stepped out of the trees and she held her packages tighter. She sighed in relief when she saw his familiar, young features.

"My queen, we must hurry if we are to get you to safety." he whispered, wrapping his large hand around her trembling arm. He strapped his bow to his back and took one of the bundles from her.

They ran through the forest, and hope filled her when she spotted a faint light ahead of her and her rescuer. They were going to make it; they'll make it to safety.

She felt something pull at her long red hair and she gasped, freezing. Her bundle was ripped from her arms and she screamed.

"No!" she cried, turning to the demon who took it.

She gasped in horror and ran to her rescuer, instincts taking over.

Her guardian handed the bundle he had to the woman and drew his bow; he shot the arrow quickly, in one fluid movement. It flew through the air swiftly and slammed into the demon's chest; the wrong one. The other shadows stalked away, before the man could draw his next arrow. He turned to his queen and bowed his head, falling to one knee.

"I am sorry, my queen. I have failed you."

"No," she shook her head. "You have protected me and this one. You've done well."

He licked his lips and nodded somberly.

They still had one. As long as Dracul didn't have the two together the world was safe. But nothing could take the pain of losing one of her greatest gifts.