A Forever Love Ch. 06byDaniellekitten©
Kinlye jerked trying to force her way out of Rafe's arms. "No, let me go!" There was horror in her voice and on her face as she clawed at Rafe to get free.
"Nikky, take her," Rafe shouted, pushing her toward his mate. He barely saw Nikky catch her before turning toward the door. His brother was in there, facing the wolf of a man who wasn't sane. He opened the door, ducking back as the huge body of the beast hit the wall next to him. Christian stood, his legs a shoulder's width apart, his eyes on the beast.
"Christian," Rafe yelled. "Are you alright?"
Matthew didn't give Christian time to answer; he came up at him from the floor with huge claw-like hands reaching for his throat. He drove him backward and against the wall, huge puffs of plaster and chunks of the wall falling to the floor at their feet. Christian broke Matthew's hold with a loud grunt and then grabbed his arm, using the monster's weight to pull him over his hip to land, once more, on the floor.
Christian was ready when the beast rose again and he easily moved aside, ducking under Matthew's arm. He turned and let Matthew run himself into the wall. The beast sank down, his hand going to a bleeding wound upon his forehead. "Are you ready to listen?"
"What's there to listen too? You giving your men orders to have me taken out and tied to a tree so that you can beat me?
"Matthew, I have no intentions to hurt you. I do not believe in whipping a man as punishment for some imagined crime. You've done all of this to protect Kinlye, to protect the woman that I love beyond my own life. I won't punish you for doing something I myself would do as well."
"But...but you're...you're a vampire?"
"Yes, as are my brother and his mate, Matthew. But we don't kill, we don't indiscriminatingly recreate our kind. As you feel about your own mate, I feel for Kinlye. I want her to feel a part of me; I want her in my life forever. I also want you to understand this. We will only have this conversation once, Matthew. Come after her again and I won't be quite so understanding. Do you understand me?"
Christian's eyes didn't move from the big beast that sat on the floor in front of him. He didn't move, not until he heard the beast's answer.
"You won't hurt her, or kill her? You don't know the horrors I've seen in the home of a master vampire." Christian took two steps closer to the beast, laying his hand over the eyes of the shrinking Matthew.
"Relax," he murmured. "Let me in, let me see." For a moment there was nothing behind Matthew's eyes but a kaleidoscope of colors, flowing and changing with no sense of reason behind them. But slowly, they changed and Christian could see into Matthew's thought, see the things that had horrified him so much about vampires.
The girl wasn't much older than eighteen, her mother one of the castle's maids. She was playing in the wide maze of the garden while she waited for her mother to finish her day. With a soft sigh, she bent over the open bud of a rose, breathing in its beautiful scent.
"What are you doing here?"
The girl jumped away from the flowers, falling into a quick curtsey as she saw the man waiting for an answer from her. "I...I was waiting for...my mother..."
"Speak up, girl!"
The girl, her name was Annalisa stuttered her answer again, this time managing to make it a bit louder.
"Do you know who I am, girl?"
"Lord Dansmith, sir. You are in charge of the castle guard." She glanced up at his face, trying to gauge his reaction. His face was like a mask of stone, unmoving, uncaring. It terrified her even more and she felt the unnerving need to run
"And you are Annalisa. We've heard of you, girl. You're old enough, why haven't you applied for a position in the castle?"
"Uh, sir, I am innocent of men. My mother fears that I will become debauched if I apply for a position here." She glanced up and for the first time saw a smile form on Dansmith's face. It made him even scarier looking and Annalisa wanted to run from the gardens. She wanted to find her mother and bury her face in the softness of her mother's bosom and forget meeting this strange and evil man. Her eyes grew ever larger as he walked toward her, taking a stray strand of brilliant red hair in his hand, wrapping the length around his wrist, forcing her to move closer to him.
"Debauched? Hmm, probably so. You are a pretty one, Annalisa, a rare treat for myself and my men to share. Come with me, I will show you things you'd only guessed about or dreamed could be true." He didn't let go of the girl's hair, feeling her urge to run, to be away from him and the dangers that he represented. The emotions running from her body were delicious and he looked forward to more. He forced her to walk in front of him, his hands moving from her breasts to her thighs, ignoring her cries. He opened a door she'd never noticed in the wall that surrounded the gardens, pushing her through first before following behind her.
Annalisa struggled to get away from him, even tearing hunks out of her hair that he'd wrapped around his hand. But he was too strong and he turned and locked the door behind them after pushing her through. His hand squeezed her breast and she screamed. He slapped her face. "No screaming, girl. You'll find that our kind hears screams and find them to be something of an aphrodisiac to our demonic natures." He yanked her back against him, shoving his hand down the front of her loose fitting blouse. Her bare breasts were there for his enjoyment and he did, squeezing and kneading, pulling on her nipples, twisting and plucking on them until she struggled to be away, more screams falling from her lips.
He pushed her through another doorway, grabbing hold of her blouse and ripping it in half. He pushed it from her shoulders, baring her beautiful breasts to the enjoyment of the men in the room they'd entered.
"Oh look, Dansmith brought us a treat." Another man stood, standing in front of Annalisa, his hands coming up to touch her face. "You look scared, little girl. Are you afraid of us?"
"Please don't let him do this to me. Help me! Please!"
The man laughed, his hands going from her shoulders to the softness of her breasts. His head dipped and Annalisa felt the touch of a man's lip on her nipple. Before, when she'd think about having this kind of relationship with a man, he'd been her husband and a first lieutenant of the realm. He'd wooed her, chased and won her and was her hero. He was a gentleman, nothing like these men here. They stood around her, pushing her from one to the other. She was grabbed and kissed with hard mouths and probing prying tongues. Her skirt was ripped and she felt it slipping, catching on her wide hips only to be forced even further down until she lost even that bit of a barrier from those drooling, jeering men.
She was tossed back to the first man and when she looked up and into his face, she screamed even harder. It had changed, gone from handsome to hard and evil. He opened his mouth, his fangs gleaming in the light of the candles and he flicked his tongue over them. "Now you know what we are, Annalisa. This is what your mother feared to happen if you were ever allowed to work here. This is what she knew we would do to you." He grinned widely and ran his tongue over his teeth once more.
Annalisa cringed back, wanting nothing to do with this man/monster that held her so tightly, so intimately. "Please," she whimpered, terrified beyond the capacity to speak with any volume. "Let me go."
"Oh, I just love it when they beg." He tipped his head back, in nostrils flaring as he inhaled greedily. "You smell of fear, so delicious, so delicate. I can hardly believe how luscious you smell." He dipped his head, burying his nose against the skin of her neck. "So delectable." He sighed and she screeched, tears streaming down her cheeks as she tried so hard to move away from him.
"No-o-o!" She tried desperately to pull away until he shook her, his finger skimming down between her eyes and off the tip of her nose to tap against her lips.
"Now, Annalisa, slow down a bit. Let's not get ahead of ourselves. What can I do for you?"
"Let me go, please?" Her tone was bordering on desperate and she stared up at the twisted face of the man who'd captured her earlier. She was a step away from hysterical and she took a couple of deep breaths, waiting for her captor to answer.
A slow smile grew upon his lips and he reached out, grasping her breast in one hand. She grabbed his wrist, doing everything in her power to get him to let go. Just as the woman opened her mouth to scream, Christian removed his hand. "I know what happens next. Matthew, a lot of our kind act with little concern to humans and worry little about their welfare. My brother and I are not like that. We feed, but we never kill and we never, ever force someone to do what they do not wish to do. I know you don't believe that, but I want you to see for yourself.
Matthew curled his upper lip in a sneer. "Your kind is all the same."
"If that is what you think, looking won't hurt you any at all." Christian tried to keep his expression calm, but it wasn't easy, especially with the sneer that was on the face of the werewolf.
"Fine," Matthew growled, rising quickly to his feet. Rafe growled and readied himself to attack before Christian's hand landed on his shoulder, holding him back.
"Slow down, Rafe. This is necessary." He stood as Matthew moved closer to him, meeting his eyes.
"How does this work?" Matthew asked, his hands hovering around Christian's face.
Christian lifted his hands, grabbing Matthew's huge palm and pulling it over his eyes. "This might make you a bit dizzy, Matthew. Vampires think a bit quicker than humans do. I'll try to slow down my thoughts."
Matthew nodded and then closed his eyes as the figures filling his head moved with lightning speed. Voices mixed together, creating a chaos of noise that he could not decipher. They were a buzz that only slowed when Christian sighed. Then he began to identify the different people he was seeing and hear their voices. Matthew's eyes were wide as he followed the actions going on before him. He jerked when he saw a large room of hooded vampires, a young werewolf standing in their center. The werewolf spoke, his hand rose to point at one of the hooded figures. Christian pulled back his hood, his voice loud as he called for the punishment of the vampire that had hurt the werewolf and his family in question. Voices around him rose and a babble grew louder as some of those vampires called for evidence. Others shouted for punishment.
Christian held his hands up, calling loudly for quiet. When it was restored to the room, Christian stood again, moving from the werewolf to the vampire accused of killing the werewolf's whole family. "Lord Davis Arlloff, you have been found guilty of the awful and deliberate slayings of Naomi and Eloise White, wife and daughter of Malcolm White. What do you say of these accusation?"
"This is bunk! Even if I had killed those two, they are nothing but wolves, neither human nor animal. How can you possibly find me guilty for something of this nature!"
When he wound down, Christian rose again. "Naomi and Eloise were young women. Naomi was also pregnant. Neither of them did you foul, they had no idea who you were until you attacked them killing them savagely. Do you have any evidence that you weren't there? Anything that might be concrete?" Malcolm growled, his eyes glowing as he sat and listened to the crimes that had been committed upon his family. He settled only when Christian set his hand on Malcolm's shoulder.
"The werewolf is here for our usage. They have no rights in our world, Christian. What you are trying to do here is a travesty of justice. It equals us to them and it makes me physically ill." Davis lifted his handkerchief, pressing it to his red tinged lips.
"So you think that because they are animals, we should ignore their wishes. We should decide what's best for them and treat them as disposable? That makes me sick." Christian swallowed heavily, feeling the gorge rise into his throat.
"Do you want to know why those two females were killed?"
Christian nodded, his hands braced against the table in front of him.
"They were stealing from me. When I demanded payment, the older bitch snarled at me. I was not going to let that go unpunished."
"So you broke her neck and then raped and abused her daughter, did you not?"
"They had to be made to pay." Arlloff ducked backwards as the werewolf snarled, his teeth snapping loudly. He was being held back now, held by three large men and his body was beginning to change. Christian stepped in front of the frothing face of the werewolf, his hand touching him gently against his neck.
"Malcolm, calm." He bent closer to the beast, ignoring the slathering fangs and the saliva that sprayed from them. "Calm down, my friend. Let us finish here."
Malcolm physically shook himself, stopping the change and forcing himself to calm. "Quickly, Christian," he said between clenching teeth.
Christian nodded. He turned away from Malcolm and turned back to Davis. "So, you killed Naomi and her unborn child. Then what happened?"
Davis flicked an imaginary speck of fluff from the sleeve of his jacket. He cleared his throat and then flicked at the collar and his cravat. "I did what any of the rest of you would. I took the young one in payment for their theft."
"Ah so you think if someone steals from you that you should be allowed to do what you want to them?" Christian snapped his fingers and watched as the huge double doors opened slowly. A single person entered the room full of caped vampires.
Davis Arlloff lifted his head. His eyes went wide as he heard his daughter's voice. "No, Davalos, no, she had nothing to do with this." He reached up, grabbing hold of Christian's sleeve. "Please don't involve her in this. I'll do whatever you want."
"Maybe Malcolm felt the same, Davis. Maybe he would have done anything in this world to protect his family, and he was never given the chance. Maybe after you killed his wife, the woman he'd sworn to spend the rest of his life with, you should have thought of how you would feel if he were doing the same things you did to his daughter. She was his one and only child and you killed her." Christian stared around the room of vampires. He reached out and took the hand of the young vampire girl. "Malcolm?"
Malcolm lifted his head, tears were streaming down his face, his eyes held nothing but misery. "Y-yes, Christian."
"This is up to you." He lifted the girl's hand, ignoring the outcry from some of the other members of the room. "What is your decision?"
Malcolm lifted his hand, taking the girl's fingers in his. He drew her closer to him and then bent, brushing a single kiss on her satiny soft cheek before taking her to her father. "I may be a wolf," he growled. "But that doesn't make me an animal." He nodded at Christian and then walked past the rest of the vampires before heading out the door.
Christian reached up, taking Matthew's hand in his. "Can you see, Matthew? I will not hurt Kinlye. Ever."
Matthew's eyes were leaking tears. His shoulders shook and sobs broke through his stoic demeanor. "I would pledge myself to you, sir."
Rafe opened his mouth but Christian stopped him. "What would that mean, Matthew?"
"I pledge to care for you and your family, to do whatever you need done."
Christian nodded. "I won't have to worry about you around Kinlye, will I?"
"No, sir." He spoke the words quickly and then looked up at Christian. "I'll do whatever you wish done, sir."
Christian smiled. "Pledging is unnecessary, Matthew. We'd love for you to become a part of our family. I'm sure that would make Kinlye happy as well. You have only to promise that you won't hurt her or try to take her away from me again. That's all I'll ever ask." He held out his hand, waiting for Matthew to take his hand, shaking it. Then he nodded at the man
He turned and walked out of the room, barely having time to open his arms when Kinlye came barreling into them. "You're all right? Oh God, tell me you're all right." Her hands roamed over his body, searching for any kind of injuries.
"Slow down, sweetheart. I'm fine." He hugged her close, his hand touching the softness of her cheek, turning her face to meet his eyes. "I'm fine. It's all over."
"Matthew?" A fear for the huge werewolf bit deep inside of her and she needed to know that he was all right as well.
"I've invited him to come and stay with us."
"Yes, my darling brother and his love for strays." Rafe smacked Christian in the arm and grinned at him.
"You should be thanking my love of strays. Your mate was one of those strays."
Rafe's grin just grew larger and he reached out and grabbed Nikky, hauling him against his body. "Oh yeah, he's my favorite of any you've brought home, Christian." Nikky dug his hand into Rafe's hair, bringing him down to kiss him.
Kinlye stared for a moment, unused to seeing two men kiss with such passion. Christian stared down at her, a smile hovering on his lips as he watched her eyes widen. Then he turned her toward him, two fingers under her stubborn little chin, lifting her face to him. "Show me how worried you were," he whispered, his lips only a few inches away.
She rose on her toes, her hands digging into the side of his hair, pulling it from the black ribbon he'd used to keep it back. Then his lips were on hers and he gave her full access of his mouth. A low groan was pulled from him and he pulled her even tighter against him. "You're mine now," he whispered against her mouth.
"Yes," she sighed. He tugged her even closer, turning her so that her back was to the wall. His mouth was hot, his tongue was like a living brand in her mouth. His arm was at the small of her back, arching her against him. When he finally lifted his head, she was panting.
"Come on, Kinlye. Let's go home."