New Kingdom: European Court Ch. 06byMicKay©
Gabriel stood alone at window staring into the night but not seeing the garden in front of him. During his life, time seemed to just exist with every day being similar to the previous and all created a fading collection of memories. Since meeting Alena, he had taken a closer look at his life and did not like what he found. He had abandoned his hedonistic way of life instantly and continued even when he lost her for those long eight years.
Even now, with her mated to him for life, Gabriel still shied away from remembering the pain of their separation. He smiled at the memory of their reunion. She was so worn down from worrying about her sister that he almost scooped her up in his arms and ran away with her. And now, his brother was suffering the same loss.
But now, Gabriel had Alena with him forever. Her change, although delayed, had occurred with none of the drama Iona had experienced. And she had eagerly adapted to becoming both mate and mother with her usual grace.
He smiled when he realized he was no longer alone in the room. These women of his would never know how little they could sneak past him. Quiet steps and whispers were drowned in the loud thoughts and emotions racing through their minds. Waiting for precisely the right moment, Gabriel turned around and grabbed the girl lifting her high in his arms.
"Daddy!" Abigail squealed in shock. "How did you know I was there?"
"I'll never tell," he said kissing her forehead. "It will give me the advantage when you discover boys."
"Uh, that will never happen," she declared with a smirk.
"Can I get that in writing? Or just a really strong promise?"
"Because your mother thinks I'm being over-protective and borderline ridiculous worrying about you."
"You don't need to worry," Abigail whispered. "I'm never leaving you and Mommy."
"One day, you'll grow up. And apparently it will be very soon. I won't hold you to your promise but I will make one to you. Whoever he is ...."
"Whoever who is?"
"The one who gets your heart ..."
"What will he do with my heart?"
"Can I finish my promise?"
"I will probably kill him."
"Ok," she answered. "Cause if he has my heart then I'll probably be dead and he should be dead too."
"Is this the Third Creation's version of the 'Birds and Bees' darling?" Alena asked from the doorway.
"Don't mock my pain woman," he said setting Abigail on her feet. "Where's your brother?"
"In his room," she answered walking through the door. "Plotting Antony's demise."
"He'll need to move quickly," Alena said walking closer to Gabriel. "I really don't think your brother will survive this separation."
"It's only been thirty minutes," Gabriel replied. "Her leaving is his fault."
"How can you blame him?"
"He failed to properly ... deal with Eloise. And then, no matter how much I tried to defend him, he should never have touched Emma. He hurt her unnecessarily."
"Gabriel," Edward said racing into the room. "It's not over. Phillip just called. The pilot never called him at takeoff so he contacted security. The pilot and crew are dead. Emma is missing. They have her, Gabriel."
"I have to find her," Antony said pacing the library. "I keep screwing up. Why did I let her leave?"
"Because she was not your prisoner," Edward answered. "Gabriel, how are we going to find her?"
"Why are you asking him?" Antony asked.
"I'm not slighting you, brother. But if your lady was taken to the temples, then we have a problem of finding an invisible woman in a hidden location. Gabriel is better trained in these matters."
"Not this time," Gabriel added. "We don't know where to look so we'll need a connection with her. Unfortunately, she has a shield that will block us. Well, she blocks everyone except Antony. He's the only one to find her."
"Antony," Edward started, "I cannot stress enough how important it is for you learn how to talk to this woman."
Walking out the front door of his house, Antony was dressed simply in black jeans and a black t-shirt. With his dark hair and tanned skin, he moved from the house unnoticed by any humans. His two companions on this mission were standing at the end of the driveway dressed in similar dark attire. Only his brother's mates knew their plans.
Antony walked in silence passing his brothers without a word. He knew they would follow him at a distance but give him space to contact Emma. If she had been his mate, he would have no trouble finding her. Their blood connection would have easily led him to her thoughts and physical location. He had fed from her so her blood warmed his veins, but she had no connection to him. Shaking his head, he moved away from his thoughts of despair and tried to focus on finding her.
Only twenty minutes had passed since Edward's announcement of her abduction. Antony had seen her less than one hour ago. Her scent was still strong in the air but he had to find the difference between her scent that could be tracked and the lingering traces that remained from her sleeping in his arms.
Passing through the gates, Antony paused, inhaled deeply and then raced through the night. He knew the general direction the car had taken and the vehicle and driver's body were found not too far from the private landing strip. He knew that he would be wasting time if he had to reach the car and then search for her. Intercepting her scent would be advantageous. He had watched his brothers and their mates when Iona had to remember the horrors of her kidnapping. His Emma would not survive such cruelty.
Running at a fast and steady pace, he moved through the city streets brightly lit and alive. The sounds of the night consisted of loud music, laughter, and human heartbeats pumping blood through fragile bodies. He could hear and identify each of them but none matched the one he was seeking.
"Emma!" he yelled in his mind. "Baby, I'm here looking for you but you need to talk to me. Tell me where you are. Tell me if you're hurt. Just talk."
Blocking the sounds of the city, he focused on the tone of her voice, the accent that Americans do not admit possessing, and the smell of her blood. Suddenly, his body tensed. Her blood was near calling to him. He slowed his pace moving through the streets unseen. The aroma grew stronger when he turned down a dark street. He knew in his heart that it was only her blood he smelled and not the sweet scent of her skin and breath. He would not find her on the street. He would only find her blood. They had hurt her.
"Emma. I know you hate me. I hate me too. So we finally agree on something," he thought. "I want to promise you everything that I think you could want but the truth is ... I'm tired of trying to figure you out. I'm comfortable with being the selfish bastard that I have been all of my life. So, we are going to do things my way."
Stopping in his pursuit, he looked behind him and saw the city lights now twinkled more than a mile away. He reached down and lifted a large stone and knew he could identify the dark wet stain before tasting the substance. Just to be sure, he swiped his tongue across the rock briefly and felt her inside him. His heart leaped in both joy and fear. He was close but she was hurt. He had to focus on finding her. There would be ample time to plan his revenge on her abductors later. Gabriel would make sure of that.
"Ok girl, you're starting to piss me off. When I find you, you may not like what I have planned for you. I'm seriously leaning toward keeping you locked up for the rest of your life. Of course, you will be confined to my bedroom and I will be there too. Let my brothers fight this war. I need you. Please talk to me."
"Antony," her weak voice whispered.
"Talk to me baby so I can find you."
"I ... I don't know where I am," she said with a sob.
"You don't have to tell me where. Just talk and I will find you. I've followed your scent and found blood on a stone. Are you hurt?"
"I tried to run and he hit me. I fell and hit the rock."
"Where are you hurt?"
"My arm, and ankle ... and face."
"You hit your head?" Antony asked suddenly standing still.
"No," she whispered. "He hit me and I fell. The he hit me when he picked me up and he hit me ... again."
"What else have they done?" he asked barely able to control his temper.
"Nothing ... yet," she answered his silent question. "I thought they were ... but they forgot about me."
"Keep hidden. I'm getting closer."
Antony waited until his brothers joined him and motioned to the disturbed ground several feet ahead. They surveyed the apparently abandoned site and quickly assessed that the excavation team had not return home as the media had published. Decaying flesh was everywhere in shallow graves.
"No guards," Edward commented.
"No reason for them," Gabriel explained. "Who would suspect anything was here?"
"God, Gabriel, I hope your plan works," Antony said.
"We have very little information about them. We can only use what we know."
"Has it escaped anyone's attention that we only know what they know about us?" Edward snapped.
"They think they know us," Gabriel explained. "Let's show them a small portion of who we really are."