The Nosferatu Adventures
page 208, chapter 208
Our heroine entered the prince's tent, scanning the place for the mirror. There didn't seem to be one anywhere, making her doubt Finn's honesty for the first time. "Your friends are willing to use you as bait. Again." she turned to see Vlad suddenly standing behind her in the shadows. "If this is what you are looking for, all you had to do was ask." he gestured to a mirror about a foot high that was directly behind him in the darkened room.
"You heard." she cleared her throat as her eyes fluttered. The scent of blood was fresh in the air, the sound the only thing she was able to focus on suddenly. Vlad nodded as he moved slowly towards her, the air around him shifting in swirls of fog. "You had it buried under the pile of rugs." she commented as she realized they were moved. Nodding to herself, the banshee turned to face him.
"It's a powerful tool that some people would kill for. I should be insulted that your friends are only willing to steal it." He reached out his hand, running his thumb across her neck. "What if I said your friends could have it without a fight?"
"What's the catch?" she heard her voice crack as she started to sway.
"You leave them. Join me for a time." he raised his chin casting his eyes down at her. She could see the edge of his teeth, the double row of fangs gleaming in the light of the candles. "As I said before, I've never met another of my kind. I want to learn more about you."
"What's to know? I was human, I died, became a banshee, stuff happened and now I'm connected to the werewolves." she shrugged trying to make it seem less important then it was. Vlad moved his fingers across her stomach as he walked behind her before trailing his hand back up to her neck, tightened his grip at her throat.
"You said the one was your brother? How is that when he's clearly a born lycanthrope and you're vampiric?"
"My life is..."
"Complicated?" he hushed
"I was going to say shacked up. Really really shacked up." our heroine replied as she felt the prince loosen his hand on her throat.
"Then stay here, and it will be less so." he moved from her then, still hovering just to her left out of her direct eye sight.
"I can not love you if that's what you're looking for?" she was holding the book tight to her chest as if it could protect her. "My heart's already divided."
"I never asked you to." he brushed it off as if water on a duck's back. "I'm more interested in how you arrived here?"
"Now that's whats complicated." she turned towards him, only to find he had moved to the opposite side of her, forcing her to spin in a circle trying to keep up.
"How so?" he raised his left hand palm up as he continued to keep her in circles. "And who other then that arrogant wolf out there, has divided your heart?" Vlad seemed to have a few hidden agendas that he was willing to shell out in pieces. Our heroine gave a half sound as she realized he was baiting her.
"I'm in love with one man who is in love with me but unwilling to allow himself to be. I'm also in love with a man who too is in love with the first man. And I'm having a third man's baby. That shacked up enough for you?" She waited for him to register shock, but his expression never changed.
"And the arrogant wolf out there? Where does he fit?"
"Ah, the second man." The sentence was barely out of our heroine's mouth when Reuben entered the tent. He stepped in with authority as he shoved the curtained door aside, one boot crossing the threshold.
"Everything alright?" he kept his eyes locked on Vlad's, seeing the twinge of amusement on his lips, while his eyes stayed cold. The dark haired werewolf sniffed as he moved towards the female, flicking his hair out of his eyes. "They're up." He referred to the other pack. "They want to talk to you."
"Me?" our heroine asked in confusion.
Reuben ran his hand over his beard nodding. "You and Rolf." he reached for her arm, pulling her out of the tent. "You see the mirror?" he asked whispering. Our heroine nodded. "And?"
"He'll give it to you on one condition." she replied as they marched to the edge of the camp, the scent of wet dog burning her nose. she stumbled nearly dropping the leather bag and spellbook, as they caught up to Rolf and Finn. Rolf turned to look at them, his arms crossed over his chest, hair pulled back loosely out of his face. "Whoa." the female pointed towards the now shifted wolves with the hand holding the leather bag. Licking her lips, she stared in awe at the seven males. All had dark hair the same shade as Rolf's, all had blue eyes the same as Rolf's.
"Down girl." Rolf's voice was barely a breath as the corner of his mouth became a one sided smile.
"Very possibly." she stammered shaking her head, her pale hand finding it's way to the back of her hair as she blushed. "That was so wrong...er...you...you wanted..." she cleared her throat. "to talk to me?" The one closest to them nodded, then bent down on the ground on one knee. Our heroine shifted her weight, hiding behind Reuben. "He's going to pounce!" the leather bag made a thug as it fell to the ground beside Reuben's foot, dirt slopping over his toes.
"Nos!" he shook his foot before wiping the mud from it.
The male cleared his throat eyes cast down; not completely willing to continue. Another of the werewolves closet to him punched him in the hip. "We were unaware there were other branches of the Oaken pack out there. Even more so that an Oaken female was among that pack. By the laws of our tradition we must bow down before you. Pledge our loyalty. I am to understand that the wolf who defeated me during the full moon ritual is also your mate...though." he gazed his eyes up at them the amber-grey of the wolf steady, making his already pale skin glow in the darkness. His breath seemed to reach farther then it should have as he spoke, the coldness capturing it between them. "You are not claimed?"
"This feels like a trap. Should I feel threatened? I feel threatened." our heroine said in a single rush. Reuben rolled his eyes as he grabbed her hands from his waist, removing them for a split second before she grabbed hold of him again, this time an inch lower.
"Nos, you're drawing blood." he slapped her hands away once more. "The Seer's book is stabbing me in the spine. Quite it!"
"It's not a trap. You know this, female shapeshifters are rare. Protected." Rolf tossed over his shoulder never taking his eyes off of the pack. "Like the way we thought of you in the beginning before you shacked up our lives."
"I'm the reason your still breathing butt-munch." she snarled in return. "Wait. You said Oaken. That's your last name?" she turned to look at the large male to her left, seeing Rolf nod. "Huh. Yeah someone read their tea leaves wrong. I'm not your girl. I'm a Frankenstein soon to be Blacksmith." The former alpha stood then in confusion, tilting his head to the side. "Well, Frankenstein-Blacksmith-Frankenstein. If you want to get technical about it."
"Well, yeah technically you are an Oaken because of what happened to us." Rolf replied gesturing between them. The former pack alpha bent down again on one knee.
"So you're saying your bloodline..." our heroine moved an inch from using Reuben as a shield, gesturing herself towards the other pack. "Trumps having been Dagan's or Reuben's mate?" The former pack alpha stood again his eyebrows knitted together in conflict and puzzlement. "How is that fair? How does that work? I can't shift completely."
"That we are aware of." Finn added from his position a few feet away. "And only because you've never bothered to try."
"I don't want to try! I've seen how painful it is for you lot. I might be careless and a bit of a hot head, but I'm not crazy."
"A bit?" Reuben, Rolf and Finn all said at the same time. "Na, no, no!" Rolf continued shaking his head. "You're just as much a nutball as Dagan is. You know you're right." he tilted his head to the side, stabbing her in the chest with this finger. "You are a Frankenstein. Dagan's blood still runs hot and rampant through your veins." he wiped the back of his wrist over his mouth. "And the two years we've known you, you've made one bad decision after another just like he has. From day one you've been his creation. With everything that's happened, you're still Dagan's creation. Stitched together like a monster in a fairy tale. Look at you!" the large male slapped the spellbook out of her hand, getting angrier by the second. "His blood, my soul, the Seer's magick, Reuben's protection. All to feed Loki's bastard growing inside you. Three werewolf bloodlines." he leaned in close then, his eyes having turned to the wolf's, the grin spreading across his lips in a delicate humour.
"You are forgetting the fact I single handedly defeated Jarl, taking over his pack for a brief time." she smiled back holding up her hand, exposing four fingers. "Technically that makes four bloodlines."
"Apologies. You've consumed four different lycanthrope bloodlines." he turned towards the other pack, his hands out palms up, his shoulders back. "She can't be controlled. Not by her mate, not by her alpha. But, if you want to be looking over your shoulder constantly, by all means." he took a step closer to the former alpha. "Pledge yourself to her. Protecting her isn't all it's cracked up to be."
"That's not very brotherly of you." the former alpha stated. "Handing your sister to another pack."
"Correction. I defeated you. You're part of my pack now." Reuben added, rubbing his left hand with his right, his eyes never once leaving the group before him. "I'm the man in charge." he slammed his fist into his chest a few times.
"Wow, how very Dagan of you." our heroine rolled her eyes as she bent to pick up the book and leather bag, fixing the strap on her shoulder."When you boys decide who gets to be on top, let me know. This title belt has a stew to finish cooking."
Tune in again for another installment of the Nosferatu Adventures starring your heroine...me (straight up story. I've got something in store for Reuben and his alpha position in the pack...)