Shatel drove back to the trailer in the afternoon. He’d hoped that by changing up the times he hunted that he’d have better luck finding prey but he’d had no such luck. He needed to eat and soon but eating in front of her made it seem disgusting.
Who the hell was she
to look at him with disdain and revulsion as he drank his meal? She,
with the swirling, electric blue eyes and fangs that flashed so
viciously when she focused on him? Did she think she was too good to
drink blood, that which sustained her, them? She was a vampire, she had
to have blood! And yet, she hadn’t drank; she’d stayed in control but
sooner or later she’d have to give in to the thirst, they all did.
trip was a fool’s errand; he’d have to take the one he’d brought in
yesterday but that meant that no matter what tomorrow he’d have to grab
two people. One of the scars on his neck started itching, as it did
when he was frustrated and he scratched at it, wanting to be able to
scrape it off of his body - all of them.
One hundred and seventy
years hadn’t taken away the pain, the scars that still oozed with the
vile stench that they held inside him. He was ready to die but it would
be at the hands of the two that had caused this, not by his own.
But it had to be soon. He’d had enough.
had fallen over the cell and Beth used the time to think of Mick, to
try and connect with him. Luka and Henry were sleeping as was the new
guy and Max? Well, she was resting but Beth wasn’t sure it was sleep
really. Luka had torn his tee shirt up into pieces and Beth had kept
wetting pieces of it to bathe Max’s face or lay across it in an effort
to help cool her but it was a losing battle. It was as critical for Max
as it was for her to get out of here.
Mick was at the loft and
other people were too. She could tell that although she couldn’t really
see them; she just knew he was talking to people. He looked wiped out
and she was sure he hadn’t slept any better than she had been. Her
heart ached for him, for them both and she focused as hard as she could
and reached her hand out to him, in an effort to feel the comfort only
he could offer.
Suddenly he stopped what he was doing and made
his way into the office and she saw him looking straight ahead for a
moment before closing his eyes. He knew, he knew that she was with him
and he reached out his hand to her and for a moment she felt the
connection that they needed, the love of the only man she’d ever desire
no matter how long they lived.
It passed between them, the love,
the ache, the salvation of their souls as two melded into one. For a
few minutes they both held the contact and finally Mick grabbed a piece
of paper and the pen and she saw that he was writing a note again. He
held it up to his chest and she saw the words and hoped she could
provide an answer.
What is silver?
knew she had been sending him messages about silver; that was good.
How did she make it clearer for him? Damn this was frustrating! If
only she could speak the words and he’d be able to hear them. She might
wake the others but it was worth a try.
Silver trailer, Mick. Silver trailer in the desert. She visualized it as she said it, focusing hard on it when she heard footsteps. Shatel!
I love you Mick!
The thought ran over and over in her mind as she alerted the others.
She and Luka each had a stake concealed and Henry was going to distract
Shatel when he brought the next body into the cell.
It had to
work, it had too. She was out of time and she knew it. She wouldn’t
make it more than another hour or so without blood and who knew how much
longer that Max could make it without a doctor. Time was crucial now
and so this had to work.
Except it didn’t.
felt her withdraw although he didn’t know why. A silver trail in the
desert? Name of a road, a town maybe? He opened the door and went to
speak to everyone. He suddenly realized how quiet it had become in the
room and he knew that they knew he’d gotten a message from Beth.
need to find a road or town or something in the desert with the word
silver in it. I got a clear message of a silver trail in the desert.”
we have a possible lead,” Josef said and for some reason he felt
complete confidence in what Mick was saying. After all, he’d known from
the start that something had happened. Logan and Audrey who had moved
their base of operations to Mick’s loft for the duration both started
searching, running names and the word silver.
Mick grabbed a
fresh glass of A+ and drank it straight down. He still felt her; not
exactly physically but somewhere in his heart, she was still with him.
He tried to will her his strength and let her know they would find her.
“A clear message it seems,” Josef said, watching Mick.
“Yep, I think so. Seemed clear,” he said as he rinsed his glass out. “Lani not back from the doctor yet?”
She’s going to call when they are done,” Josef said, looking down so
that Mick didn’t see the pain and fear that was in his eyes. “I wanted
to go with her but she wouldn’t let me.”
“She’s a tough one,
Josef. Just like Beth. She’s going to be fine, you know that don’t
you? One way or the other?” The silent implication wasn’t wasted on
Yes, he could turn her, earlier than scheduled but he
wanted her to be okay so that she could be turned when she wanted to be,
when she was ready.
When they were both ready.
sat on the examination table at the clinic waiting for Rose to come in.
She was in a paper gown which did little to ward off the chill of the
room. The nurse had also given her a light blanket and she had wrapped
it around her shoulders to help, an action that was failing miserably.
had wanted to come with her but it was just a doctor’s appointment.
Wasn’t it? Of course it was she told herself, over and over in fact.
She was just a little anemic, that was all.
She jumped when Rose
entered the room after a brief knock on the door. “Hi,” she said,
pulling up a stool that was on wheels and looking over the paperwork the
nurse had completed to begin with.
“Well, your blood pressure and temp are good, Lani but your pulse is a bit rapid. Nervous?”
“Yes,” Lani admitted. “It’s all so scary.”
“Me, the situation or do you always get anxiety when you go to the doctor? It’s very common you know.”
“I - I guess, a little bit. Mostly just because I never really get sick; hardly ever. I guess I don’t handle it so well.”
we’re going to get it all figured out, Lani. It’s going to be okay.”
She scanned out the information forms that Lani had completed and
something caught her attention immediately. “You have AO- blood? Like
“Yes, freaky isn’t it? They say only 1 person in a
million has it and yet here Beth and I grew up together and we both have
“Yes, it’s a rather strange coincidence, certainly. Let’s see, you say you feel shaky sometimes? Before or after eating?”
little of both actually. But if I get hungry it gets worse; I get
light-headed. And sometimes after I eat I get a bit queasy.”
“Any history on diabetes in your family? I don’t see any listed but think hard about it.”
“No, absolutely none that I know of. Do you think I am diabetic?”
it’s a possibility, given your symptoms. But not the only
possibility.” They went through other questions and finally Rose said,
“Okay, we’re going to draw some blood, Lani. That will give up a few
things to explore. So, just hang out for a bit and the nurse will be
back in to get some blood.”
Lani nodded and swallowed hard. Diabetes? Wow, could it be?
opened the door right after the lights came on and the prisoners
blinked tightly for a few moments to avoid the stinging shock of the
brightness. He didn’t have anyone with him and that worried Beth and
Luka both. He stood in front of the cell door, staring at Beth who
stood up and stared him in the eye, letting her eyes change and baring
He growled and started to reach through the bars of
the cell and then thought better of it. He would not show his fear, his
rage to this woman, to any of them. Instead, he focused on the new guy
who sat staring at him from the far end of the cell.
rose and walked to him without any protest. He was using allure on them
Beth realized which is why most of them didn’t object to what was
Shatel looked at Beth again and growled; she answered
with a growl of her own. She knew that for some reason her fangs
scared him and she didn’t hesitate to use them when she could.
motioned to the corner of the cell with his eyes and she refused to
move. The plan wouldn’t work unless they got him inside the cell with
them. She stood her ground and he said, “I’ll hurt her. I don’t care
if she is dying.”
Beth glanced back at Max who was leaning
against the wall, eyes half closed and pain clearly etched across her
features. Could she risk it? He would at least come into the cell to
get her because she would never be able to make the walk. Another
glance at Max showed her struggling to her feet and she knew what Shatel
was doing, using allure again.
“You bastard!” Beth said in vamp tones.
“Yes, that and many other things, my lady. Do you yield?” The last words were nothing more than a hiss.
Beth said, spitting the bitter words out and stepping away just in time
to catch Max as she fell. Beth also realized that he’d had them all
under his spell of allure as she saw Henry and Luka all staring straight
He unlocked the door and the new guy simply walked out, a
mere shell of a man Beth realized. At least he didn’t know what was
happening. The clang of the cell door closing seemed to rouse the rest
of them and Beth sat slowly down, holding Max in her arms.
also realized how strong the need for blood was when she couldn’t take
her eyes off of the veins in Max’s throat. She fought back a scream and
hot, stinging tears. She would not cry while that bastard was here.
even when he brought a cup of the warm blood and held it out to her in
the cell. His eyes were taunting, mocking her needs and she shut her
own knowing that if she went to him he’d withdraw the cup from her
reach. He wanted her to kill the others.
She wouldn’t. She couldn’t.
is it, Mick? You got a message from her, didn’t you?” Dorothy said as
she walked down the stairs. She had been upstairs resting a bit while
Mick was in the office.
“Yes, I did. I think wherever she is has
silver in the name, like Silver Trail or something similar. They’re
looking now.” He looked at her and saw that stress was imprinted all
over her face and the rigid angle of her shoulders. “Dorothy, why don’t
you sit down a bit. Let me order you something to eat. Lani should be
back before too long and I’m sure Audrey is hungry too.”
something light, Mick. Thank you so much.” She reached out and touched
her son in laws face for a moment and smiled at him. “You are going to
get to her in time, Mick.”
He closed his eyes for a moment in silent acknowledgment. Would they? In time?
Time. They all knew her time was running out.
stared at the results of the preliminary blood work for Lani. The
results were certainly a surprise, if not a bit astounding. There was
clearly more to this story than anyone knew. She ordered another test
to be run on some of the remaining blood, but that one and another one
would take at least a day to come back.
Meantime, this was going
to be a shock for her. Rose gathered herself because she was about to
deliver some very unexpected news to Lani. Yes, she was anemic a bit
but there was a lot more to the story than that.
Shatel had left and she heard his footsteps retreating up the stairs
Beth wrapped her arms around her knees and laid her head on her knees
and cried. Scalding tears poured from her, tears of fear and pain and
the thought of losing control and hurting someone.
got what Mick had suffered in the desert here. How hard he fought for
control because it’s what she was feeling as well. Her body was
screaming for blood, her mind a fiery impulse urging her to take blood
now. She felt the burn throughout her whole body as the call for blood
raced through her. She was starving, dying for it.
said, kneeling down beside her. “Come with me.” He offered her his
hand and she followed him to the far end of the cell which was abandoned
now. He sat down and asked her to sit with him.
“Beth, you need
to drink. I’m okay, I’m strong. If I understand you correctly you
don’t take it all, so just take what you need.”
“I - I don’t know
if I can control it, Luka.” She wiped the tears off of her cheeks and
even in the dark she could see the blood pumping though his veins and
the scent of his blood was heady, like the scent of the most delicious
meal she could imagine.
“Of course you can, Beth. They are down there, sleeping. It’s just you and I here and they don’t have to know, okay?”
licked her lips, and felt her fangs nick her tongue. She glanced
nervously down to the other end of the cell and knew he was right, both
Henry and Max were sleeping. She inhaled the scent of the blood and
moved a bit closer to him.
It felt weird to drink his blood,
someone that they weren’t paying. Again, it made her think of Mick and
how he had talked about the difference between food and love. This was
definitely food but she’d come to like Luka a lot the past few days. It
wasn’t love but he wasn’t a stranger either.
Her body finally
settled the debate as uncontrollable shaking over came her. “I just
need your arm, Luka. I’ll try not to take too much. If you feel dizzy
you need to tell me.”
“Okay, you got it. My arm?” The thought seemed to surprise him.
She took his arm and scented along the vein. The grime that covered
them all didn’t matter a bit when her tongue snaked out to move along
the vein, searching for the place to bite.
When her fangs bit
into his arm it was a bit of a shock for Luka. It didn’t really hurt,
but it was a curious sensation. Her bite was delicate, or so it seemed.
He felt the rhythmic pull of her mouth on his arm and he settled back
against the wall and closed his eyes.
Beth had presence enough of
mind to steer his mind away from bodily reactions and keep him calm.
Almost as soon as she bit the shaking stopped and she knew that she
could remain in control. She took a bit more than she intended, maybe a
pint or so but when she was done she pulled her fangs out and sealed
the marks as best as she could.
“Luka, thank you.” She was glad that he couldn’t see the wash of embarrassment that flowed over her face.
smiled and looked down at her, even though he couldn’t see her. “It’s
okay, Beth. We’re in this together and the rest of us won’t make it out
if we don’t work together.”
She drew in a long breath and saw
blood beading up on his arm. “Luka, press your palm over the marks for a
bit to help stop the bleeding. Are you feeling okay?”
“Yes, a bit tired though. We’ve got a while before he comes back. Why don’t we both try to rest?”
think that’s a good idea.” She stood up and held her hand out to him
and he took it, getting to his feet a bit shakily. After they had both
settled down on the other end of the cell she sent a message to Mick, as
best she could.
I’m okay, Mick. I love you.
A sudden sense of peace settled over Mick and it came from Beth. He knew what it was, the sense of warmth, of well-being.
She’d fed. She was okay.
What had she been forced to do? His heart ached for his Beth and he prayed that whatever had happened she could live with.
To be continued…