Chapter 44: Teasing- Part 1
Katie stood there stupefied as Alexander stood before her, his eyes darker and fangs visible. She didn’t know what to do and was scared to move a single muscle in her body under his unblinking vision.
She felt if she tried to run it would only make him chase after her like hunting a prey. She saw Alexander take a step forward towards her making her clutch the side of her skirt tightly.
One step followed by another until he stood right in front of her. She had to tilt her head back to meet his eyes and as they stared for mere seconds, the Lord placed one of his hand beside her head on the wall and she gulped.
The look on his face was too calm and unnerving, she didn’t know why but it felt he was angry or was it that he wanted blood from her? Some people considered it a privilege to give their blood to the royal elite Lords but she didn’t know what to think as the thought of a vampire sinking fangs in her had never occurred to her.
“Are you going to drink from me?” she asked hesitantly and heard him chuckle.
She moved away from him with the pace of a snail so that he didn’t notice but he was the Lord of Valeria. He placed his other hand on the wall so that she couldn’t move.
“That depends on what you are offering me to drink,” he replied deviously.
“Offering?” She asked a little confused at his words.
“Yes,” he answered, leaning forward.
“My neck?” Katie knew that vampires preferred to drink from the neck as it was easier to suck the blood out of the tender region.
She prepared herself mentally with her eyes shut close waiting for the bite. It scared her yet at the same time she felt her body tingle in anticipation, it was a mix of emotions. When nothing happened she opened her eyes to notice that his eyes had turned back to its usual color.
Alexander looked at the wide-eyed woman who had a bewildered look on her face. Her innocence was something to be concerned about, he thought to himself. He was good in controlling his thirst to drink blood but today he almost lost control.
If it was someone else he wouldn’t have thought before sinking in his fangs and sucking out the last drop of blood from the body but this one was special.
“You aren’t going to bite me?” he heard her ask him with relief in her voice but her face reflected the small disappointment that he didn’t miss.
“Did you want me to?” he questioned her question.
“N-no no!” she stuttered avoiding his gaze now bringing an amused smile on his face. She was fidgeting under his gaze and he found it to be endearing.
He had only meant to tease her when she had entered his bath, instead, she had vanished from his sight for two days. It took him by surprise to see her in the shed and the thought of her avoiding him had irked him. During that time he had caught a boy looking at her suggestively and wanted to gauge his eyes out.
She was naive. Too damn naive, he thought to himself.
He didn’t have the right to control her actions which he normally did with others. It would be best to have Martin deal with it than him directly asking her to change back her work routine.
“Did you get drenched ?” Her hair looked a little frizzled.
Stepping back, he went to one of his drawers to pick a rusted key and placed it in his trouser pocket.
“Ah yes, I had been to the graveyard and got caught in the rain while coming back,” she replied.
“You can take the carriage with you from now. You don’t have to walk all the way there,” the Valerian lord suggested kindly making her smile and she nodded, “I needed to talk about something important with you. Let’s go to the study room.”
Reaching the study she saw him close the door before he went to take a seat behind the desk. She sat down wondering what he wanted to talk about.
“I received some information on the massacre attack that happened in your town. Oliver and the others found a witch on their expedition and found two bodies that belonged from your town,” as Alexander explained this Katie felt her heart sink with dread, “The witch was killed and the bodies have been brought back here.”
“Can I..see them?” she asked him.
“The bodies are under observation right now. We can go there once the observation is complete,” he said and they were interrupted by a knock on the door.
It was one of the general who had come to talk to him, stepping outside the study Alexander closed he door behind him. She could hear them speak but she didn’t heed to what they spoke, instead her thoughts were stuck on the information the Valerian Lord had just shared.
She was scared to see but at the same time she wanted to reassure herself that her cousin was still alive by proving it false.
As thoughts crossed through her mind with what if’s possibility, one of the paper on the desk caught hold of her attention, there was the name Juliet in it. Picking up the paper she saw that it was a list of names, names of people who had passed away this month either due to illness or accident. It also included people who were missing from the town.
She heard Alexander clear his throat behind her making her keep the paper back on the desk suddenly.
“Sorry,” she apologized sheepishly bringing her hands together to keep it still, “I just saw a familiar name on it and got curious.”
“Is that so,” he responded taking the paper she had placed on the desk in his hand.
“Yes, Mr. Weaver’s daughter also shared the same name as Juliet. He looked really down when I met him at the graveyard today,” she said and he hummed in response before speaking to her.
“The observation is complete, would you like to go see them?” he asked her and she nodded her head.
The bodies were kept down in the dungeons which were next to the horse shed. This was where she had been staring at this noon. It was a dark lit space made of black stone walls. There were guards around at each interval of four barred cells. It made her uncomfortable with every step she took as death hung in the atmosphere.
But the cells were empty with no hostage or criminal in it. She saw at the far end there was another passage that led a level down under the ground.
Katie felt Alexander’s hand on her back once they came to a certain cell where she could see three bodies, two on one side an another on the other side of the cell. The guard who was accompanying them, opened the lock so that they could enter it. She had to cover her nose to stop smelling the foul stench of blood and the decomposing bodies.
“Go ahead,” she heard Alexander speak gently to her and she walked where the bodies were laid down.
The face was a mess with cuts and bruises. Having a closer look at both faces she felt a sigh of relief escape her mouth. None of them were her cousin. Turning back she shook her head looking at Alexander.
Her eyes then went to the other side of the room where the third body was laid.
“That’s the witch who was involved in the masquerade,” Alexander said as she went to look at one of the murderer of her town.
Katie had never come across a witch and this one had a chalky white, broken skin that showed of veins like patterns around the face. Lips cracked, nails that had turned black. Having a closer look she frowned before her eyes widened in shock.
She couldn’t be whom she thought she was. She was unable to digest the fact that this woman had been around her family, among their town folk like any other human. How could this be possible? she thought to herself.
“What’s the matter Katie?” she heard Alexander ask her as he approached closer to where she stood.
“I know her. She was going to be Ralph’s fiance,” she whispered, “Velma. Velma was her name.”
“Looks like the Black witches still reside in towns under disguise,” he murmured and hen spoke, “Did you notice anything different about her? Any habits or anything she might have said?” he asked her.
“She had started living in our town for three years and she was like any of us. She smiled, laughed, got angry when someone pulled a trick on her which my cousin usually did to get her attention at first. She didn’t eat much when she was invited for dinner. Like she couldn’t have it,” she said recollecting her memories, “My uncle had once seen her coming back home at the time of dawn. When Ralph jokingly asked her she seemed a little irritated but that was all.”
She should have noticed but how could anyone know that a black witch was living with them.
“Do you remember when it happened?” he asked her.
“It was a week before the Winter’s celebration. I remember Ralph going to meet her the morning the masquerade took place,” she said before looking at him, “Can we go from here?”
“Of course,” he replied asking the guard to lock the cell as they left.