- P R E V I E W -
Tearing my eyes away from Aya was impossible. She looked fine and the usual cheeky grin on her face when she looked at me reassured me just enough. But at the same time, I felt like something was very wrong.
"My Lord, what is she doing here? I have not called her for duty yet." My tone was calm, yet even I could hear the viciousness behind it. The King had sworm to protect Aya so long as she served both he and I, and that's what she was doing. She hadn't done anything wrong and I knew it.
The King glanced at me, avoiding eye contact completely. Instead he looked just past me, at Andrew, who stood stiff by my side.
"I know that Scarlet, it was me who requested her presence here actually. I just need to speak to her." He said casually, though I could hear a mean tone in his voice. I kicked at the ground with the heel of my boot in an attempt to get him to look at me, but he simply glanced at the floor below my boots and called a maid to scrub the floor there. I scoffed quietly, moving back to let her scrub. What was he hiding and why would he hide it from me, of all people? Wasn't I the one who had saved his life just four weeks ago?
The King trained his eyes on Aya then, seeming to look her up and down. I did the same, studying her with an extreme thoroughness. Was she hiding a weapon of some sort in her clothing? Hell, was there a stain on her shirt?
"Aya," The King started, his voice rough. "Lift your shirt for me."
That was the moment when I paused at her stomach, seeing the small bulge that was there. I moved my eyes up to her face, praying she would just lift her shirt and it would all be fine, but when I saw the look of absolute terror in her eyes I knew it wasn't true.
"Aya, lift your shirt!" The King spoke louder this time, impatience clear in his voice. I took a step forward to tell him no, she would not lift her shirt, but Andrew pulled me back with a grip on my arm as hard as stone. I tugged secretively but furiously until we locked eyes. The look in his eyes was one of fear, but complete calm. He must have known this was happening, he must have had a plan. I nodded at him before turning back to watch Aya. She had one hand clutching the bottom of her shirt so tight that her knuckles were turning to white while the other was clenched in a fist at her side. I tried willing her through my mind to just lift her shirt a tiny bit and put it down as fast as she could.
The King stared at her expectantly before gesturing to one of the guards. He stepped toward Aya and I moved forward a little, ready to kill him in a second if he dared hurt her. The guard glanced at me, discomfort dancing in his bright blue eyes. He nodded at me before moving to Aya's side swiftly, punching her right in the stomach. She fell down immediately, clutching her stomach as tightly as she could before throwing up all over the marble tiles.
I froze on the spot, not daring to make a sound as silence filled the room. The King sighed, gesturing to one of the other guards. He moved forward quickly, pulling out a long blade. He was moving in closer and closer to Aya until I ran forward, kicking his legs to trip him.
I turned back to the King when the guard fell, glaring with a fury so fierce it could burn through anything.
"You will not do this, I can take care of her myself until the time comes when she can give birth. She will work at the same pace as the other servants without causing a single problem, you have absolutely no reason to do this." I growled as the guard stood up behind me. The King was about to gesture to the guard before pausing, looking me in the eye finally. His expression was blank, his eyes bright and red. In a desperate attempt I grabbed the human guard behind me again, shoving him toward the king and slamming my foot down on his back.
"This guard is a human. He probably hasn't killed a man in his life and he's certainly not strong enough to kill any of us. There is no use for him, yet Aya's child could serve some use to you. Kill him and let me take care of Aya myself." I said quickly, trying to keep the desperation out of my voice. I would never let him kill her just for this.
The King glanced at the guard under my boot, who was now breathing deeply, both in fear and being unable to breathe.
"Please, my Lord. I am strong enough to fight for your honour, please don't kill me." He begged, and I laughed out loud and lifted my foot. He began to get up again before I turned back, slamming my boot into his side with all my force. A loud crack could be heard and the human guard cried out in pain. I kicked him closer to the King, raising my eyebrows.
"He's no use now, is he, my Lord?" I questioned, a hint of sarcasm in my voice. I ignored the gasps circulating around the room- I knew what I had done and I knew it wasn't good. The look in the King's eyes told me that well enough.
"Not anymore, Scarlet. Finish him off for me, would you?" I froze when he spoke those words, moving my hand to clutch the hilt of the blade at my side. His words were cruel and nasty, but his expression was one of devastation. He had obviously liked this guard very much.
"I said finish him off! Bring me his head!" He yelled, causing the few around me to jump. The King never yelled. I looked up at him and nodded slowly, taking a deep breath as I slowly pulled out my sword. As I positioned it at the human guard's neck, thoughts began racing through my mind.
This guard had only obeyed orders and I had broken his ribs. Now I was going to bring the King his head because of that. Guilt began flowing through me until the King yelled at me again to hurry it up. This guard would have killed Aya without a second thought, a pregnant girl. He deserved to die.
I raised the sword then, sucking in a breath before slicing it through his neck. Silence filled the room as his head rolled across the floor to stop at the King's feet. Even he looked shocked- nobody expected me to actually kill him.
"There is his head, my Lord." I said stiffly, ignoring the strong scent of human blood filling the room. At that very moment I froze, realization filling my mind. Injuring a member of the King's Guard and being caught was punishable by death, and I had broken his ribs and taken his head. But the King had to understand this- I was one of his most loyal, yet it was him who had betrayed me first.
The King stared at the head at his feet, many different expressions crossing his face before he murmured something, standing up and glaring at me.
"It seems your orders have been fulfilled, Scarlet. I don't think I need you here anymore." He said coldly as two guards took hold of my arms and began dragging me out of the room. I fought against them as hard as I could as another guard walked toward Aya's shaking form, taking out a shining sword. The guards began pulling me harder out the door and I began screaming out words in Arantene language. I never spoke in my home country's language unless I couldn't help it.
"Lys kah ik grosken red ik crecen kol!" I screamed frantically, causing Andrew to stare at me with wide eyes. He knew I never spoke in my home language, much less threatened a king in it.
"Translation!" The King yelled, and a small girl ran to his side and looked at me in sadness.
"You are a traitor and a dead man." The girl spoke in a strong voice, translating my exact words. The King sighed, glancing at me before raising his eyebrows at the guard as though he were saying 'did I tell you to stop?'. The guard raised his sword in the air then as I continued screaming and thrashing against the two guards holding me with a tight grip.
As the guards began pulling me out the door, I caught a glimpse of Aya's face. She stared at me with a look of pain and sorrow, her glistening hazel eyes filled with tears.
And then, through all the yelling and screaming, I watched as the sword pierced through Aya's chest.
First came the feeling of disbelief. Then it changed to sorrow, and eventually fury.
I escaped the grip of the guards then, pulling out my sword to slice through their necks in one single stroke. I could hear Andrew screaming my name, but I ignored him. I had thought he knew about this, that he had a plan of some sort. But as I listened to his screams more closely, I knew I had been broken beyond repair.
"Kill her! Guards, kill this traitor!"
I whipped my head around to lock eyes with him, and I saw only fury in his eyes- fury towards me. I looked at the King once more as guards began piling into the room, and although I saw a flicker of guilt in his eyes, I knew he would let them kill me anyway.
I turned on my heels immediately, running to escape the castle. I didn't hesitate in using my vampire speed as I jumped into the air, flying through an open window and landing in the city streets outside the castle. Humans turned to look at me, fearful and puzzled expressions on their faces. I couldn't stay here any longer- I was only safe if I returned home, to Arantene.
So as I raced out of the city and into the forests, I knew I only had one thing to do when it came to that time- I would kill the king and I would definitely, absolutely, murder Andrew.
- A U T H O R ' S N O T E -
Arantene- pronounced Are-en-teen-ee
This preview will be included in the story once it is published, but this is basically what the story revolves around. It's how the plot started, in a nutshell. Please leave your comments and suggestions, and I hope you have a lovely day.