A Dark Night with a Dark Stranger Ch. 07byBellstoires©
Thank you all for being so wonderful! I hope the chapter below is enjoyable, please keep reading and commenting.
A few times I have been pulled up on my grammar- and for this I am sorry. Between work and uni, I barely have enough time to write, and so the grammatical errors fall last on my 'to do list'. I have tried to find an editor- but so far no luck. So if you are reading these stories and think you might be able to help- please let me know!
I want desperately to please everyone. Unfortunately my studies are science based, and so I am finding it difficult to transverse into the world of non-fictional writing.
I hope to hear from anyone who may be interested soon...
Chapter 7... Hunting in style-
"How can the elders know we have formed a coven?" Sameth asked, his voice betraying his feelings of insecurity.
Clyde shrugged in response and Ragon stared at him. If he were going to pick someone he trusted least out of his recruited coven members; it was Clyde. Still, he had no basis for such an accusation, and besides trying valiantly to win Bell's affections, Clyde had shown no indications of betrayal. He was after all, Ragon thought to himself; just acting like Clyde.
"When I asked you all here to form this coven, I had no intention of bringing danger to you, beyond that which Kiara might supply. I will show no animosity if you choose to leave now?" Ragon said.
"Leave now?" Clyde asked undignified, "when it is just starting to get good?"
Both Larissa and Cambridge exchanged worried looks, which was punctuated by Sandra saying, "I didn't expect to be called upon by William and Nicholas," and her sad eyes raked over Bell before she added, "but I have come to know this little one, and I will stand by you both."
The other three nodded.
"So be it," Ragon said, before turning to Sameth, "and you what of you friend?"
Sameth seemed to be thinking hard. After a moment, which to Bell felt like a life time, he nodded once.
Bell looked around at the vampires who were staying to protect her and realised something; she had not thanked them. Chewing on her bottom lip, she rehearsed her thank you speech in her head for a moment then said, "I'm sorry. I don't want anything to happen to anyone."
"Oh sugar, come here," Sandra said, moving to her side in a flash and embracing her.
Bell wanted to cry. How could she have spent a lifetime looking for friends in other humans only to find such friendships in the un-dead? Her face must have shown her gratitude, because Larissa moved over quickly too, joining the hug. Clyde smiled wickedly; moving over to embrace all three girls, but Ragon reached out and stopped him. She thought she might have heard Ragon whisper something to him, but was unsure.
That night Ragon thought long and hard about the coming Halloween party. The fact that the elders knew about Bell was a concern; but that they would invite a mortal, who was not a source, to one of their events? That was unheard of. He had been waiting for an opportunity to speak with Sameth about this since the letter had first arrived. Sameth had been a friend since Ragon had been made by Kiara, and it was he who had helped him escape her clutches all those decades ago. When Sameth glanced over at him, he indicated for him to follow him; which he did.
Moving over to the deserted hall way, Ragon said, "Follow me."
The two did not talk again until Ragon had directed them through a door.
"Read much?" Sameth asked when he saw the impressive library that Ragon had taken him to.
Large mahogany bookshelves lined the walls, each filled with various writings.
"My collection has grown since last you saw me," Ragon replied, indicating a small spiral staircase that lead to a second level.
From this vantage point Sameth could appreciate Ragon's library in its entirety. His eyes scanned the room quickly; noting the antique desk which corned this second level and was scattered with papers. Ragon hurriedly covered his personal documents. Trusting Sameth was without question; still, some things were best kept private.
"What's this all about?" Sameth asked
"I need your advice," Ragon said quickly.
Sameth stared back at Ragon, and waited for him to continue.
"Am I doing the right thing?" he asked, "keeping Bell here, would it not be better for us to escape into the night, to leave this place?"
Sameth considered his words for a moment. "What are your intensions for Bell? Do you mean to change her?" he asked.
Ragon looked around the room quickly, "No," he said simply.
"Why have you kept her then? What is she to you? Surely you do not mean to watch her grow old and die?" Sameth asked.
"No, but-" Ragon began.
"Then why suffer her to Kiara's tyranny? You must know that Kiara means to kill her. Would it not have been better to release her, and let her resume a normal life?" Sameth asked.
"I can't let her go," Ragon replied.
His hands were shaking, realising the truth of his words. He couldn't let her go. Not now that he had gotten to know her.
"Then you must remain here," Sameth said, before touching his chin in consideration, "but why not at least let her pick up her old life? You would not begrudge her some semblance of living?"
"You think I don't want to? I know I can't give her what she deserves, but surely the risks are too great. What if Kiara captured her again? I do not think she would take so long a second time to kill her," Ragon said, his eyes sad.
"Better living one day happy, then a lifetime hiding," Sameth said, before reaching out to touch Ragon on the shoulder and adding, "you are not a cruel man. Why not let her out a bit; let her smell the roses."
"Perhaps," Ragon said, mulling over Sameth's words.
"I would volunteer my services on such occasions, I could watch over her. I believe before all this happened she was studying? Why not let her partake in night classes, where she can be safe with your friends nearby? Kiara would be none the wiser; she won't be expecting you to let her leave again, not after what happened last time," Sameth said.
Ragon nodded slowly, "Once the Halloween party has played out I will do as you suggest," he said.
Ragon then reached up to clap Sameth on the shoulder, "you have been a dear friend," he said smiling.
Sameth replied, "We have been through much together."
"And some," Ragon said, his smile widening, "I shall not forget your help, this time, or the last."
"There was nothing more I wanted than to free Kiara from you," Sameth replied, and followed Ragon down the spiral staircase.
Bell had been waiting to get Ragon alone all night, and had been disappointed when he had disappeared with Sameth. When finally she saw him returning she took her chance, jumped from her chair, and reached him before he could resume his place with the group.
"Is there something wrong?" Ragon asked, noting the look in Bell's eyes.
Bell laughed once, "You mean asides from your ex wanting to kill me? Nope nothing- everything is just great." She had spoken with sarcasm, and though she instantly knew her words had hurt Ragon; she couldn't help but laugh at her situation.
"I'm sorry," Ragon said simply looking down.
"Please stop apologising. I am the one who should be saying sorry to you. You rescue me from rapists; tell me that you will look after me; save me from vampires after I ignore your warnings, and now you are forming a coven to keep me safe," Bell blurted out.
She wanted to add just one word to the end of her sentence. Why? She knew that Ragon was a nice guy, or rather a nice vampire; but there must be a thousand girls around here that were at this very moment in trouble. Each one of them needed a saviour just as much as her; maybe even more so. So why had he chosen her; why was her story any different to theirs? Her eyes raked his abnormally beautiful features. Someone with looks like his could have whoever they wanted: why her?
Ragon smiled kindly, "you have made for a rather difficult house guest," he teased.
Bell returned his smile, but continued to build the courage to ask him why he had saved her in the first place. Just then however, Clyde entered the hallway.
"Not talking about me I hope?" he asked.
Ragon glowered at him, but neither responded.
"Well, I was thinking as we have a party to go to, that we might go out and get our costumes?"
Both Bell and Ragon stared back in disbelief. Was he serious?
"And," Clyde went on taking advantage of their silence, "seeing as the event is so soon, I thought perhaps tonight was as good as any to get them," he finished.
Ragon made to speak, but Bell answered first saying, "it would be nice to get out of this house for a bit."
Ragon considered her words carefully, and thinking of his recent conversation with Sameth said, "I guess we will have to get them at some point."
"But why can't we go?" B1 asked in an annoyingly high pitched whiney voice, thirty minutes later as the coven and Bell made to leave.
"Because my dears, you are not on the invite," Clyde said for the third time; now losing patience with his beautiful blood bags.
"Besides," Cambridge interjected, "you would likely be served up as the main course."
Both girls pouted; their large full lips quivering, giving them the appearance of spoilt teenagers. Which Bell realised, they probably were.
"When I return, I promise you, we will have some fun," Clyde said winking.
They stormed off to the kitchen, reached inside the freezer, and began pouring vodka shots.
"Where did you find them?" Larissa asked incredulously.
"At a fashion shoot in Rio," he replied, his ever wicked grin adorning his face. "I saw them, and I thought; I just have to have them."
Bell and Ragon rode behind Clyde's car; which held himself and Cambridge in the front, and Thomas, Sandra and Larissa in the back. Sameth had said he would rather go hunting and requested the group select a costume for him.
"Do you think Sameth would be opposed to going as a mermaid?" Clyde asked sneakily, when he knew he had driven far enough to be out of earshot of Sameth.
Cambridge's large booming laugh filled the car.
"So were actually doing this? We're going? And were taking Bell with us?" Larissa asked when finally they had stopped laughing.
"You know we cannot refuse the invite," Cambridge said soothingly to his mate.
"Yes, but surely if Ragon and Bell left to go somewhere else the elders would be none the wiser," Larissa protested.
"They would know," Clyde said darkly, "and they would not be happy about it; Ragon has no choice."
The costume shop was empty; bar the single assistant who welcomed them as they entered.
The woman was older, with grey short hair and said, "Halloween party?" once they were all inside.
Ragon nodded grimly, and allowed the assistant to direct them to the back of the shop, where themed Halloween costumes hung.
"If you need any help just holler," she said smiling and returned to the counter.
Clyde was the first to try on an outfit. He reached for the costume, and in a second had blurred into it; not bothering to enter the change rooms.
"You're going as a vampire?" Bell asked.
"What? Too much of a cliché?" Clyde asked, admiring himself in the full length mirror.
"I thought Halloween was about dressing up, and you're just going to go as yourself?" Bell asked accusatorily.
Clyde winked at her saying, "why go as someone else, when-"
But he was cut off speaking as Bell raised her pointed finger at his reflection in the mirror, "but, but I can see you!" she exclaimed.
"You can see? It's a miracle!" Clyde replied dramatically; his reflection waving at her sarcastically.
"No, I mean, I just thought-" She began.
"You just thought that because the movies say vampires don't have a reflection that the real ones wouldn't either?" Clyde said.
Bell nodded sheepishly.
"Well you can stop sleeping with that garlic bulb under your bed, the real vampires are much more difficult to kill," Clyde said smiling.
Bell stared at him; wanting him to tell her more.
"Ragon hasn't told you much, has he?" Clyde asked.
Bell made to correct him, but Clyde went on, "holy water makes us wet; churches are fine if your into that sort of thing; and silver," he said now revealing a small locket from beneath his Dracula cape, "doesn't really pack much of a punch."
Bell laughed, but was intrigued by his item of jewellery; watching carefully as he replaced it safely beneath his clothes.
Just then Ragon exited the change room. He looked magnificent. He was wearing dark pants which looked to be from the 18th century, and a white shirt with a button up vest that fitted snugly. He carried a large sword, and Bell was reminder of prince charming. Her jaw had dropped when she saw him, and she quickly closed her mouth when he looked at her expectantly.
"Oh Ragon honey, don't you look dashing; just like the old days," Sandra said winking.
Sandra too had her costume on; she was wearing a medieval skirt, which showed off a pair of torn stockings and a tightly fitting red bodice which accentuated her curves. She looked like a call girl from the 19 hundreds.
"I see you're not dressing up either?" Clyde said teasingly, staring at her breasts which were pressed up by the corset.
Thomas moved over to her mate protectively; he was wearing a ye old prates costume, and bowed, and taking her hand kissed it saying, "I would pay every cent in the world for one night with you."
Sandra accepted his kiss on the hand, but then pulled her mate towards him and kissed him passionately in return. Bell immediately averted her eyes and saw Cambridge wearing a mummy's outfit, holding Larissa's hand. Larissa was wearing a golden ball gown dress with a large yellow ribbon around her waist.
"I just love beauty and the beast," she said admiring herself in the mirror, after pushing Clyde out of the way.
At that moment Sandra moved over to Bell, and taking her by the hand said, "I have hung up something in here for you," and she directed her to the nearest change room.
Bell gasped when she saw the costume hanging before her, but quickly pulled the curtain closed and begun removing her jeans and sweater. When she pulled the curtain aside a few minutes later, everyone was waiting for her. She wore a long white dress, which cut low down the front, and was accentuated by a pair of feathered, snowy white wings. A small diamond covered mask sat snugly on her face, throwing her blue eyes into even greater focus.
"An angel?" Ragon asked, looking at Sandra with snarl, "you don't think that will draw a little too much attention?"
"Oh Ragon don't be silly; the elders wouldn't let anything happen to one of their guests, besides, doesn't she look just perfect?" Sandra asked, her hands on her hips waiting expectantly.
"Yes off course," he replied.
Ragon wanted to say much more; he wanted to take her by the hand, throw her into the change room, and prove just how perfect she was; but he did not.
"How about this for Sameth?" Cambridge asked, retrieving a fireman's costume from the rack and showing the group.
Ragon inspected the bright yellow helmet for a moment, then taking them from him, took it along with his and Bell's costumes to the counter.
"So where is the party?" the elderly shop assistant asked, as she prepared the costumes and placed them into large plastic bags.
"At a friend's house," Ragon replied quickly, not wanting to divulge too much.
"Well you all have fun," she said warmly after she had processed the transaction.
"Oh we will," Clyde replied smugly.
When they returned home half an hour later Sameth was still gone.
"That greedy vamp," Larissa said, "I hope he has left some for us."
"Where do you go, when you go hunting?" Bell blurted out.
"Why not come with me and find out?" Clyde asked invitingly.
Bell considered his words for a moment, chewing on her answer.
"No," Ragon protested before Bell could reply.
Bell turned to look at him incredulously, "So I no longer have any say in my life?" she asked.
She was thankful to Ragon for saving her life, but she still wanted to live it.
Ragon dropped his horrified eyes from Clyde and turned to face Bell saying, "Offcourse you do! I just don't think it is a good idea."
"You know," Cambridge said, before pausing to consider his words, "Bell will have to be exposed to our, err, lifestyle, at some point. You can hardly go off hunting and leave her alone for hours or days."
Ragon scowled at Cambridge.
"Honey," Sandra said soothingly, "he may have a point. There are certain harsh facts about our world that she needs to understand."
Ragon hung his head defeated.
"But why not ask Bell what she wants to do?" Larissa interjected, turning to stare at her.
Bell looked guiltily up at Ragon before saying, "I want to come."
"Well now that that's settled, I'm starving!" Clyde said excitedly, before adding, "And there is a new club in the city that I have been dying to try out."
"Club?" Bell asked curiously.
"Well we can hardly take you to a back alleyway or deserted park," Sandra replied smoothly.
"Right," Bell replied gingerly.
"Ok ladies, go put on something sexy; we're going hunting in style tonight," Clyde said, sweeping from the room in an instant.
Inside her bedroom Bell looked hard at her wardrobe. She hadn't been out clubbing for ages; she wasn't even sure what the latest fashion trends were. Reaching for a pair of tight jeans, she began pulling them on. In the very back of her closet she found a black silk high neck top, and slipped it over her black bra. She was just choosing a pair of shoes to go with her outfit, when there was a small knock at the door.
"Come in," she replied.
Larissa and Sandra walked into the room, carrying a large suitcase.
"Wow," Bell said when she saw the two girls.
They looked amazing. Sandra was wearing a long yellow dress with a large black neck piece and matching black heels. Larissa adorned a pair of black tights, and a short ruby red dress which hugged her waist and cut low down the front.
"You got ready quickly," Bell said before adding, "and you look great!"
"Just chalk it up to Clinique, immortality, and a touch of channel number 5," Larissa said smiling.
"Well it obviously works for you," Bell said laughing.
"And now were here to work for you," Sandra said, taking her by the wrist and placing her in front of the wardrobe mirror.
In a second they had removed her clothing and placed a lovely long silk black dress on her. Like Larissa's, it was cut low. They then threw a large metal necklace over her head, and while Sandra began re-doing her makeup, Larissa compared shoes to her outfit. It was less than 5 minutes later that Bell and the other two girls walked out of her room and into the living room where the rest of the group were waiting.
"Wow," Clyde said, letting out a long low whistle and staring at Bell.
Her eyes had been heavily darkened with eyeliner and a deep red eye shadow. This, along with the thick black mascara, drew her already startling blue eyes into even greater focus. Her cheeks were highlighted with a slight plum blush which matched her lipstick perfectly. Both B1 and B2, who by now were completely intoxicated, shot Bell furious looks which greatly pleased Larissa.
"Shall we?" Larissa asked with a large wide smile on her face, as she indicated the door.
The group made to leave, all accept for Ragon. He was still staring at Bell: entranced. It took a moment for him to compose himself, and then he finally joined the others.
"Girls in the car," Sandra said when Ragon made to fasten the helmet onto her head, "we spent too long working on this," she said while indicated Bell, "to let the wind sweep it all away."