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Volmar & Viola

Chapter One

I’m not the most emotionally stable man by any means. I was raised by my father who was a distant, short tempered man. I didn’t grow up with any family around and I wasn’t allowed friends over. I didn’t even have friends outside the house because I was homeschooled and didn’t know what a computer was until I moved out. Truly ninety nine percent of my life was spent on my fathers property before I turned eighteen. Not only that but the only thing my father would ever tell me about my mother was that she abandoned us shortly after I was born. Knowing what I know now, I doubt she left. I hired a private investigator to find her, spent more money than I care to admit and there’s no record of her after her supposed run away from her responsibilities as a mother. I suppose I should explain why I don’t believe she went anywhere of her own free will. read more

Zane Jr & Arthur 2

Zanr Jr soared through the air with his mate Arthur resting in his claws. They were days away from the village outside the castle they lived in. The couple was traveling so ZJ could show him a type of animal he had only just realized his mate had never seen. The moment ZJ realized it he had wanted to go and as always Arthur would follow him anywhere. It was always nice to get away just the two of them anyway. ZJ was flying low since he enjoyed the area, thats how he noticed a ruin that shouldn’t be there. He circled over it, confused. He had been with Arthur thirty years and it had only been fifty since he had been out this way. How had something so large been built, destroyed and overgrown in just that time? read more

Tierney & Bradan 2

Chapter One

“why is this place so creepy” Tierney said as he shuddered away from another tree branch. Everything about this world was creepy, somehow even the plants and trees. It was the way they twisted, even their colors that had him creeped out. Bradan chuckled “you’re safe, not a lot lives here” read more

Theodas & Nimue

Chapter One

“Theodus, I don’t know where else to even look for him” Nimue said in frustration. They didn’t know where their son was and that was never good, for anybody. He had a nasty habit of going to different worlds and terrifying the populations with his massive power. He had an abundance of it coming from both her and his father Theodas and instead of appreciating it and using it wisely he used to to cause chaos and despair “Maybe we should go find Amisra” Theodas suggested and Nimue sighed “it should not always be her job to track him down. She’s a child too Theodas and she hasn’t spoken to him in a month. Knowing our son he’s vanished completely because he knows we’ll ask her for help and he knows she will because she’ll feel bad for the people he’s hurting. Is playing into what he’s trying to do really how we should respond?” read more

Alvah & Daray 4

Chapter One

Alvah sat on the porch while Daray paced in the grass. Alvah wanted to tell him to not be so nervous but he could hardly contain his own nerves. They had a son and they were finally going to meet him today. They had been a little confused when the vampire and zombie they met explained everything but when they showed the two of them a picture they both just knew they were telling the truth. He certainly looked like a combination of them both. They discussed meeting their son with Fatima and Lombard and they all agreed him coming here would be best so he could see his home world. When the family came into view over the horizon Daray finally stopped pacing. Alvah stood, hoping his size wouldn’t be intimidating to their son. read more

Abella & Corus 3

Chapter One

They were finally making that trip to see Corus’s cousin Aurel. They had been talking about it for years but there had always seemed to be one thing or another preventing them. Corus hadn’t even asked ahead if they could come so he hoped his friend was even there but if he wasn’t he knew they were welcome to wait in his home so he could show Abella around until Aurel returned with his family from wherever they had gone. They were just though the portal when Corus had to question if they were even in the right place. Destruction laid everywhere and fires burned without any control, raging through trees. Dragons of massive proportions flew around along with other humongous creatures, some of which Corus couldn’t identify. What could have happened? What could have gone so wrong in a world with the great Demon Chthon, the rest of the Apontes and a demon like his cousin Aurel. He didn’t want to believe this was the place but he knew in his heart it was and he didn’t know what he should do. His mate was only newly a demon and he was terrified of something happening to her but at the same time he couldn’t just leave his cousins world like this or not check to see how Aurel was. read more

Nelly & Peadair

Nelly woke , lifting her head up off the window she had been resting against. She was still on the this train with a terrible feeling in her stomach that nobody but her seemed to get. The first day she had woken confused but one of her fellow passengers explained they were all going home. The explanation had settled her at the time. It wasn’t until this morning, four days later that it hit her “going home from where?” She decided to ask “Where have we been?” another question hit her and she asked it right away “and where is home?” The question seemed to perplex the man she asked. read more

Aurelia & Rees 2

He couldn’t believe it, she was really pregnant “and you think it’s been two months?”

“Yeah and…I’ve been suspicious for about a month now so I’ve had a lot of time to think. I really want to seek out my parents. I’ve wanted so badly to introduce them to you, Pretoria and Brynmor anyway and now that they’ll have, well, sort of their first grandchild it’s time. I know you’re scared for me to leave but you three will be right with me Rees” She had returned to him almost three years ago and as frightening as it truly was she was right so he fought down his protective instincts and agreed they should journey to find her parents. “How will we find them though” she walked over to a nearby drawer and pulled out a necklace. read more

Wolfric & Merle 3

Chapter One

Wolfric and Merle had been happily married twenty four years now and had their winery for fourteen. It had taken a long time to pick the perfect location, find a good staff, get equipment and a long list of other things they hadn’t known about when they decided they wanted to do this. They hadn’t stressed along the way though. Getting it going was part of their enjoyment. Merle already had more money than they could spend and even though they moved to live on location Wolfric had easily gotten his business going in the area, due in no small part to Merle practically over advertising his dentist office. The winery was just fun, something for them to do as a couple so accomplishing things took however long it took.

Late one night a knock sounded at the door of their home while Wolfric was cooking dinner and his mate, Merle was in their library reading. Wolfric turned the bruners all down to low then went to answer the door, knowing his mate would be too into the book to hear the sounds of knocking. They hadn’t been expected company so he simply thought it was some sort of rush delivery Merle had ordered. Just the fact it was a nicely dressed young man with no package in his hadn startled Wolfric but then when he realized the young man had a strong resemblance to him his heart began racing with confusion “Um…hello” the man started nervously. He was the exact same height as wolfric at 5’11, he had his blue eyes and blond hair but at the same time he was starting to see Merle stance, his gaze.

Keoki could see the realization and panic start to set in “please, let me speak. I’m Keoki and by the look on your face I can tell you notice I look a lot like you and your husband. I’m actually kind of glad because I need you to believe me. I’m in a hurry and when my technical mother finds out I’m gone…especially where I am she’s going to lock me up so listen, please, I had to meet you.” Merle didn’t hear much when he was reading but his mates heart going wild was something he would never miss. Just as Keoki realized Merle was there he was being hauled inside roughly “merle” Wolfric started as Merle shoved him onto the couch “what’re you doing at our home so late at night” he growled but realization was starting to hit him too. “listen to him Merle” Wolfirc said and Keoki began nervously speaking again.

“I’m…I’m sure you heard my name is Keoki…I’m your kid and I know that doesn’t make any sense. You see my creator has always wanted to make a breakthrough in the scientific community by making gay couples able to have their true own children, nobody else involved besides scientists. You…you’d have to question her to know how she made me because she wont even tell me all the details but I do know I’m her first truly successful experiment. All her other ones wont grow or die before ten…there’s a five and nine year old still there but I…I didn’t want to be slowed down. I wanted to meet my parents and tell anybody about us…she’s doing what she’s doing in secret because well…I wasn’t made in the traditional sense…I dont know what to say I am besides I was made from yours and Wolfircs DNA sir”

Merle was suddenly uncomfortably close, it caused Keoki to shake. Even as he asked “can you shift?”

“because you’re an Amarok?” Keoki asked, hoping he believed him. Last time he escaped she had convinced the people that found him he was crazy and managed to get him back into her care. “yes”

“No, I’m sorry but please still believe me…she considers that her one failure with me…I cant…she’s…she’s tried different things to try and get me to be able to…don’t make me go back. I know I look nice but she’s…” Merle backed up and looked at Wolfric who said “I think I believe him Merle” Merle nodded “Me too, he’s ours somehow” He looked back at Keoki who was still trembling a little. “I’m glad you made it to us. Do you know how she got her hands on our DNA?”

“No”

“Would you know how to get back where you came from?”

“Yes but she has strong magic. You wont believe me once we go. I didn’t make it here last time and the people that found me” Merle interrupted him “she isn’t fooling anybody anymore. We’re getting the two other children. We wont leave them to be hurt or leave her to experiment any longer. Technically what shes doing could make a lot of beings happy but the way she’s doing it sounds cruel. I can tell she’s hurt you, I believe you, we both believe you Keoki”

“I just don’t want either of you to get hurt.” He looked down. “You didn’t ask for any of this, but I didn’t know what else to do, who else to go to.”

Wolfric sat down next to him and rested a hand on his shoulder. “It’s going to be okay.” He looked up at Merle. “Maybe we should call my parents.”

Keoki raised his head. “You mean Lombard and Fatima?”

“You know about them?” Merle asked.

“Yeah, the woman who made me, she said I was lucky to have their genes. She said it made me…special.”

“I think you’d be special regardless.” Wolfric replied.

Keoki gave them a small smile. It looked so sad. “Thanks.”

“Why don’t you go and call them love while I talk to…well to our son.” Merle suggested.

“Alright.” He gave Keoki’s shoulder a pat then got up, letting Merle take his spot.

“You don’t have to call me your son.” Keoki said. “You didn’t technically have me or anything and I’m nineteen so, it’s okay.”

“It doesn’t matter. The wolf wouldn’t have it any other way. Your ours, no matter the circumstances of your birth.”

Merle could see how much those words meant to Keoki even before he spoke “I’ve always wanted something normal…to not just be a means to make future experiments successful”

“she wont have you back, I promise.”

“do you think I’m a coward for leaving the younger ones?”

“You did what you had to to make it and they’ll be helped as well. Do you know if they are ours as well Keoki?”

“The five year old but…I…I dont want to get your hopes up too high. She hasn’t been doing too well. My creator is expecting her to die, she doesn’t even teach her anymore. I think it’s because she’s so frustrated. She used the last bit of DNA she had of you two on that girl. The nine year old is from a couple in another world. My creator is a traveler. Their names are Alvah and Daray. He’s a straightforward vampire and he’s still doing well. She thinks he might be the second to actually live past ten. She’s apparently been doing this an incredibly long time though I don’t know precisely how long before I was her first success.”

“does sh eonly try with male couples?”

“No, she’s taken some female DNA too but those creations tend to not live past four. If she knows why she hasn’t said but shes determined to be successful in both arenas”

“whats our little girls name?” Keokis expression grew a little more sad again “Noma”

“what does she do with you guys when you…” Merle couldn’t say it. He had never met this little girl but his heart still hung heavy thinking she might die before he met her. Keoki gathered what he was asking “she’ll burn her body. She says she cant have people finding out until she has a strong success rate with making children” His voice cracked a little. “we’re just experiments. She doesn’t care” Guilt was starting to overwhelm Keoki “I shouldn’t have left them.”

Merle hugged his son “I bet you tried to take them last time”

“Yeah”

“so you didn’t this time in better hopes of making it”

“still I”

“we love you Keoki, for me, don’t guilt yourself. You’re not responsible for how your creator treats you all. You did what you had to to get here” Wolfric walked by on the phone, going into the kitchen to continue the meal he had just remembered. He talked to his parents until the meal was ready then rejoined Merle and Keoki in the living room “they should be here soon. Why don’t you come eat Keoki. I was making dinner when you came to the door” Keoki stood “thank you”

~ Back where Keoki came from ~

Mauli angrily handed Nephi his dinner “wait, what about Noma”

“Look at her, its a waste of my food at this point”

“but you have to feed her. You don’t know she’s going to die! Please momma!”

“she hasn’t gotten up all day”

“because shes hurt”

“she comes from some of the best dna I’ve ever had. If she was going to live she’d be up and about by now. She’s a failure, maybe I’d consider feeding her if you little shits hadn’t let Keoki run out of here without telling me.”

“Please”

“she’s going to die. Its time you accept that. I was still taking care of her to keep Keoki cooperative but hes gone now. Maybe he’ll think twice about leaving once I get him back when he learns the consequences. I let him off too easy last time” Mauli walked away without another word, the familiar sound of multiple locks following. Nephi walked over to Noma and shook her “wake up Noma, please” she opened her eyes “whats up”

“share this food with me” she glanced at the plate “theres hardly anything there. You eat”

“Noma, I wont eat anything if you wont share this with me”

“she’s probably not going to give you the old portions for awhile. You’re going to be starving as it is and momma says”

“No, she doesnt just get to decide you’re going to die. I need you to try, please…I don’t want to be alone” he started to sob and it gave Noma the motivation she needed to sit up “okay…okay Nephi I’ll eat” Nephi hugged her and Noma hugged back as best she could. She ate enough to satisfy him, feeling guilty for taking his food since she wasn’t sure she was going to make it. She felt tired all the time and she knew what that meant, Mauli said that was the first sign when there were signs she was going to lose one.

When they were done Nephi stood, holding out his hand to her “Nephi I”

“lets play, lets play anything you can manage. I…I cant watch her take you to the burn pile Noma. If she doesn’t see you move…” tears were falling again so she accepted his hand “Okay Nephi”

“Do you think Keoki’s going to come back this time?” Nephi asked. “I wouldn’t blame him if he didn’t.”

“He will, you know he wanted to take us.” She was so exhausted. “He won’t leave us here.” She gave Nephi her best smile. “Mauli said that our parents and grandparents were special, so they’ll definitely save us.”

At Wolfric and Merle’s:

“Oh my god.” Fatima said when she saw Keoki. “Lombard look at him.”

“Mom, dad, this is our son.” Wolfric said. “Keoki, these are your grandparents.”

“It’s nice to meet you.” Keoki said nervously.

“Would it be alright if I hugged you?” Fatima asked.

“Yeah.”

Fatima wrapped her arms around him and Keoki felt himself start to tear up, but he wouldn’t cry, not in front of them. “We’re so happy to have you.”

“Thank you.” Lombard too a turn giving him a hug then they all went to sit down.

Chapter Two

“what do you guys want to do? We need to handle this quickly if the woman who created Keoki has other children there and is mistreating them” Lombard said seriously, becoming instantly protective. “he says he can find his way back if we’re all ready to go. I don’t think we should get the law involved just yet. Keoki says she has strong magic to not only cover up what shes doing but to make beings think Keoki is making all this up” Fatima looked at Keoki “he is definitely yours and Merles, there is absolutely no denying that”

“Last time I hadn’t made it to these two yet so there was nobody to compare me to but still…I’m scared I” he couldn’t shake the worry they’d just give him back once she worked her spells. “You’re staying with us, I promise” Wolfric assured him. Keoki nodded “well lets go get Nephi and Noma” They were soon all in his grandparents car, Lombard and Fatima in the front seat and him with his dads in the back. His thoughts were now with Noma. He hoped even if she wasn’t going to make it she’d live long enough to know freedom, even if for a few hours. Merle was struggling with how sad keoki looked “what’re you thinking about” he asked “Noma”

“she’s that bad off”

“I’m just hoping she will be okay long enough to meet you all. She’s at the point of lethargy I’ve never seen her creations get past”

“there has to be some way to help her. This woman is doing all this in the dark without other professionals to help her.”

“I don’t think she fears anything more than someone else finding out about her work and getting it right faster than she can. If she told someone they might beat her to all the money this could bring the being who perfects it”

“Just have faith in your sister Keoki. Have faith in her and this family because we will get her the help she needs, we wont lose her” Merle said with such surprising confidence. Keoki didn’t know how he could think he could promise that. Fatima had a familiar question “so can you become a wolf?”

“No, she stills considers me a success though. She’s hoping to find a way to make me able. She doesn’t think customers will buy her creations if they cant do everything true biological children could do”

“how does she know an Amarok could have a mixed child with a vampire and zombie and be able to shift. I mean, sometimes mixed breeding doesn’t work out as well as others.”

“Even if you never shift Keoki you’re perfect to us” Merle said and Keoki had to fight off tears again. “Is she a shifter? Lombard asked “I don’t think so, she doesn’t talk about herself much though”

“if she’s not a shifter it might be her. Maybe if Merle tried to help you you could”

“I’d be happy to try to help you” Merle said and Keoki answered “okay” When it was obvious keoki was struggling to stay awake they found a hotel and checked in. He hadn’t complained but they knew he had just been through a long journey.

~ Back with Nephi and Noma~

Nephi woke the next day by himself “Noma” he said softly then got up with a panic. he banged on the door “where is she? Please, just tell me shes’ okay. She played yesterday! You had to have seen that!” Maulis voice sounded irritated as she answered over the intercom in their living area “she’s with me, behave”

“is she okay”

“I’m a little busy, shut your mouth and let me work Nephi” Nephi walked over to the table and sat down “good boy Nephi. I won be able to hear you for awhile so don’t waste your breath. You caught me just in time”

“please be easy with her. Don’t you want her to live” Mauli didn’t answer and he knew she was probably annoyed but Nephi didn’t care. Noma was tried not to cry as she was fitted once again with an all too familiar training collar. “dont be a baby Noma.” Mauli pulled her off the table and walked her out of the room they had been in. “what’re we going to do?”

“you’re going to shift”

“But even Keoki can’t”

“no he cant but I can push you farther than I can push Keoki since you aren’t going to last anyway. You’ll be part of history Noma. You’ll be another break through I need. Once I figure out how my future creations wont have to go through so much misery so not only will you be a part of something magnificent you’ll save others pain. It can be the one thing you do for this world, it’ll make you not so much of a waste”

“I”m…I’m not going back to Nephi am I” she was crying now “probably not but hopefully. I don’t want you to die Noma. You’ll either shift or you’ll die with us trying”

“You could ahve let me say bye”

“No because who knows what Nephi may have gotten up to. Besides, even if you die he’ll be much easier to control if he thinks you’re alive somewhere and his behavior effects you” she had never hated Mauli until today. She finally realized how much of a manipulative liar she really was. It scared Noma how little face Mauli was trying to keep right now. It made her feel like she definitely wasn’t going to get to go back to Nephi. It made her glad Nephi had forced her to play yesterday because it may have been the last time.

Wolfric and Merle:

“What are you thinking love?” Merle asked and Wolfric looked up from their son.

“I just don’t understand how someone could do something so terrible. He’s so sweet and innocent, I just can’t wrap my head around it.”

Merle pulled Wolfric into his arms. “I know, but he’s with us now and we will be able to give him, Noma, and Nephi a real life.”

“We have to find Nephi’s parents too, they should know.”

“We will, I promise.”

Nephi and Noma:

Noma was so exhausted she couldn’t even scream anymore. She just laid there curled in a ball and shaking, trying to block out the sound of Mauli’s angry, disappointed voice. “If you would just shift, I would stop.” Mauli snapped.

“I can’t.” Noma whimpered. “Please, I can’t.”

Nephi paced back and forth in their room. He knew something bad was happening, he could feel it. He went over to the door and pressed his ear against it. He couldn’t hear anything even with his superior senses, but he just knew Mauli was torturing Noma. He needed to get out and save her. He knew how Keoki had done it, but he wasn’t sure if it would work again.

Wolfric and Merle:

Keoki jerking awake startled both of them into wakefulness and him jumping out of bed and suddenly running for the room door had Merle jumping up and grabbing his son’s arm. “Where are you going?”

“Something happened, something bad.” Keoki said, sounding panicked.

“What do you mean?” Wolfric asked.

“With one of the kids.”

“How do you know?”

Keoki shook his head. “I don’t know, it’s like intuition, I just know.”

“well all go right now. Please don’t try to go anywhere without us. We want to help and we definitely don’t want to lose you now that we know you exist”

“sorry” They were all back in the car in a manner of moments, only stopping now when they had to start going off road. Lombard and Fatima didn’t care about ditching their car, like Merle and Wolfric they just cared about finding those kids.

Nephi and Noma:

A strong current from her collar finally woke Noma who sat up with a whine “I’m sorry”

“eat” she wanted to argue her stomach felt too bad to eat but she knew Mauli didn’t care. She ate slow, wanting the break anyway. Mauli was pacing, obviously thinking. Next thing Noma knew Mauli had brought in an IV “whats going on now?”

“I’m clearing out your system” she whined but didn’t say anything. That meant more drugs, more misery. She hoped maybe the clearing of her system would help her feel better. Noma still took her time eating but she had to finish eventually. Once Noma was done Mauli pulled out syringe and injected her before dragging her back into a room and shutting the door. Noma didn’t question being alone, she was grateful for it. Soon however Mauli came back with growling wolves “Mauli?”

“I told you Noma, you’ll shift or die trying. I think you lack the proper motivation, you think and hold onto hope I’ll stop and you can rest. These wolves are going to kill you if you don’t shift and fight back. You can’t rely on any of your other powers Noma. You wont be able to use them. You have only the wolf to turn to now”

“Mauli” Mauli walked out and the wolves began walking toward her. She looked one of them in the eyes, hoping if there was a wolf in there it would help her “Please, you don’t want to be on her side. Please don’t hurt me” She felt a connection but they still looked like they were considering hurting her “Please” her body began to tremble and she felt something rushing through her. She started pleading with herself to shift. Mauli watched on eagerly, desperate to get further with her work.

Noma tried to focus, focus on herself as a wolf like them. Just when she was expecting to be bitten one of the wolves licked her. The other nuzzled her “Thank you” Mauli rushed in, completely outraged “you’re holding out on me!”

“I’m not”

“They listened to you! You just want me to be a failure don’t you Noma! I bet you can shift and you’re just being a little shit. You’re faking it! I know it! You and Keoki!”

“I promise, I was just trying. I didn’t know they’d listen” suddenly the wolves were growling again but not at Noma, they were looking at Mauli who somehow looked even madder “what’re you doing Noma”

“I’m not doing anything” suddenly Noma felt the strongest surge she had felt in her life from the collar. She fell to the floor, screaming at the top of her lungs from the pain. Noma didn’t know what was happening, she couldn’t see or think. The only thing she could sense at all was pain until she felt adrenaline start to pump hard through her. Somehow in this moment she felt more alive than she ever had. She wanted to thank Nephi for never giving up on her, she wanted to see Keoki again one day, she wanted to be free of this place and this horrible woman, she wanted to shift. Next thing she knew she was a wolf and she howled in triumph.

She heard another howl and realized there was only one wolf left. Mauli had killed the one that had licked her face. Noma growled but Mauli just looked at her with wonder “you finally did it” Maulis face became smug as she instructed “don’t even think of attacking me little girl. You’re still wearing that collar and you’re not as big as you think you are.” Noma took another angry step and Mauli pulled out a gun, shooting the other wolf in the shoulder. Noma wasn’t sure if she missed or was just aiming to hurt it. “Noma, sit” the other wolf tried to bite Mauli and with a wave of her hand the wolf was sent flying into a nearby wall, knocked unconscious and bleeding badly.

Wolfric and Merle:

“We have to hurry.” Keoki said. “It has to be Noma, she’s sick and Mauli won’t care to lose her.”

“Merle, you should shift and run ahead, your paws are better for the terrain.” Wolfric said.

“Are you sure?”

“Yes, we’ll be right behind you.”

“Alright my love.” He came to a stop, quickly stripping down and shifting. Keoki’s eyes widened at the sight of the big wolf. His father was truly amazing.

“Come on, Keoki.” Wolfric said and they followed Merle who was moving quickly over the rough terrain.

Nephi and Noma:

Nephi gripped the edge of the ventilation cover, his fingers hurting as he pulled at it. He knew he could get out, even after Mauli had reinforced it. He had to get out. He had been told his father’s were amazing, especially Alvah, he had been told that man was a terrifying force of nature. He gritted his teeth, letting out a growl of frustration. “Open.” He yelled. “Open you stupid thing.” He focused every ounce of strength he had on it and was so surprised when it actually bent that he let go and fell to the floor.

Chapter Three

He crawled through and pleaded “Please still be alive Noma” Nephi used his senses like he’d been taught to track Noma and Mauli, calling for Maulis attention when he was finally right behind them. Mauli turned with Noma in her arms. She was in human form again and the hell she had been through with their creator was evident all over her body. “what did you do” he was too angry to cry though his heart ached “I did what had to be done, she did it, she shifted but once she became a girl again she was gone”

“she’s not dead”

“she may as well be but I’m happy to see your senses are that good. I didn’t realize, I thought I could bluff. I’m so proud of you Nephi. I know how to make my creations shift now. It just has to be their only choice. Because of Noma I wont have to be so cruel again”

“You’re a monster Mauli”

“what happened to momma?”

“I hate you”

“Your negotiation skills need work if she’s what you’re after Nephi”

“why can’t you just try harder.”

“I’ve long since learned its a waste of time and resources. She’s been dead a long time Nephi. I just accepted it, I don’t understand why you and Keoki refuse to”

“Because she’s our sister”

“she isn’t yours, she’s Keoki’s but she’s never been yours.”

“we’ve grown up together. I’ve known her since I was four. I may not be that old but…she’s my sister. I love her Mauli and I don’t understand how you can be so indifferent”

“I’m done with her Nephi and done trying to deal with your attitude. When Keoki gets back you two will learn obedience”

It was the first time Nephi felt his rage start to bubble over. After everything that had happened, it was unexpected, but it pushed his fear down. All that matter was Noma, it didn’t matter what Mauli did to him, as long as she never touched Nephi again. He was surprised to find his legs carrying him forward, surprised to feel any sort of power moving through him after being so powerless. He wondered if this is what had helped Keoki escape. He knew he wasn’t a strong fighter, but he would try and keep faith that Keoki was coming back.

Wolfric & Merle:

The scent Merle had picked up from his son became stronger and he let out a loud howl when the building came into view. He raced toward the front door, picking up speed when he saw it was made of metal. He twisted, letting out a loud grunt when slammed into it, nearly caving it in. He pulled back letting out a loud growl as he slammed into it again. Wolfric, Keoki, Lombard, and Fatima caught up with him and he shifted. Wolfric handed him his pants and he quickly pulled them on.

“Holy shit.” Keoki said as he looked at the damage his father had done to the door. He couldn’t believe it.

“Help me break this thing down.” Merle said and both Lombard and Fatima joined him in pushing at the door. They could feel the magic reinforcing it, but they weren’t going to stop until they were inside.

Nephi & Noma:

Nephis fingernails had inexplicably extended into long, sharp points. He hadn’t known he could do that so either the rage summoned an ability or it was just something that happened when he got mad. This was the first time he had felt like this so he didn’t know. He knew Mauli was way out of his league and could easily get the upper hand so he did the only thing he thought would matter. He tightly held his fingers together and jumped, shoving them as hard as he could into her eyeballs. She dropped Noma as she screeched and Nephi wished he had been quick enough to catch her. She was so barely alive, so obviously frail and clinging to life that the last thing she needed was to slam into the ground like she did.

Nephi picked her up and ran, unsure of what else to do beyond keeping Noma out of Maulis grasp. He was sure the jostling wasn’t helping Noma either but this was the only way he could protect her. Maulies eyes would regenerate and she’d be coming soon. Nephi thought about hiding as he ran “You idiot, she’ll smell us” he grew slightly hopeful as a room came into view he knew locked from the inside. She didn’t carry keys on her so it might not buy them much of it but it would buy them time. Nephi ran in, shut then locked the door before carefully laying Noma down.

“Noma” he said emotionally. If she could hear him she made no indication. Nephi decided to hide anyway, willing to do anything that might buy them even one more second. Mauli eyes were already mending as she walked angrily down the hall. Just as her eyes were fully working again she heard the alarm sound, the main door has been forced open. She groaned and with a wave of her hand she looked like a clean, well dressed human woman, would smell like one too. She had carefully crafted this face to be as innocent as possible. She abandoned searching for her rouge vampire and worthless pup for now, she needed to deal with whomever Keoki had brought back to her home.

She checked her pockets, happy to find the vials she had slipped into them the second she knew Keoki was missing. All she had to do was open them and her magic would waft through the air. Keoki would look like a liar yet again and she would be sure this time he wasn’t going anywhere. It actually threw her off when she saw the beings he had brought back, how the hell had he figured out where they lived. She just hoped she was stronger than them as she reached into her pocket “don’t you dare” Merle seethed “don’t I what?” she opened them and Merle chuckled, already knowing what it was “you really think thats going to work, we’re not going to be open to your suggestions on whats going on here. This is without a doubt my son and I’m here for the other two”

“sir I don’t know what he’s told you but he hasn’t been on his” Merle didn’t let her finish and tried to lunge at her but she was quick to counter, shifting right back into her true form “damn it I” she started again but he didn’t care nor did he want to waste time. His daughter could be dieing. Every second it took to get to Noma was one less seconds the doctors he trusted could be helping her.

Wolfric & Merle:

Merle jumped at Mauli again, his sharp nails barely missing her and he let out a savage growl when she managed to evade him again. “Keoki, take your father and find the children, your grandparents and I will deal with this one.”

“But, she…”

“Is nothing, don’t be afraid, take him okay?”

“Okay.” Keoki and Wolfric started the way Mauli had come from and when she tried to stop them, Merle shifted and snapped at her, driving her away from them.

She glared at him. “I’m going to kill all of you and the harvest every last bit of you. You have such perfect DNA Merle, all of you do, if only you understood.”

Keoki could smell blood and his heart hammered in his chest as he followed the scent to one of the rooms Mauli used for experiments. His fear only increased when he saw the two dead wolves and neither Noma or Nephi. They had both been in here, but not anymore. “Come on, they may be hiding Keoki.” Wolfric said as he pulled his son out of the room.

“She…she could have…”

“We have to believe they’re okay.”

They rushed on, eager when blood droplets lead them to another room, one she barely used but was still all too familiar to Keoki. He tried the door “they have to be in there. It’s locked” Keoki knocked gently on the door, his voice wouldn’t carry through but he knew Nephi would realize such a soft knock wouldn’t come from Mauli. Everything she did was demanding even when she was trying to put on a show. The sound initially made Nephi gasp and hold Noma tighter but then he realized it must be Keoki. Just incase he was wrong he left Noma where she was and cautiously approached the door, opening it slowly, relief flooding him when he was Keoki.

Keoki hugged him, relieved he was safe “where’s Noma?” Keoki asked with pain in his voice. Nephi moved to allow them in then pointed to where he had left her. Keoki went over, knowing he should rather than Wolfric. Keoki carefully picked her up and once Wolfric could really see her his heart trembled with emotion “what happened?” He asked in disbelief as he took in his little girl. Nephi wiped at his face “I don’t know but whatever Mauli put her through she shifted. I mean I didn’t see her shift but Mauli says she did. She’s ready to burn her, Noma gave her what she wanted so she’s ready to throw her away…She tried to tell me she was already dead but she isn’t…I can hear it…only a little but her hearts beating”

“can I hold her Keoki?” Wolfric asked, trying not to cry too hard. She was so little, how could anybody leave her looking like that. Nephi looked a little concerned and Keoki assured him “this is one of my dads. They want to help her. They wont let anybody hurt us again. We need to trust them Nephi. Noma doesn’t stand a chance of growing up without them” Nephi nodded and Keoki carefully handed her over. “should we wait here for Merle dad?” Keoki asked and Wolfric shook his head “we’re getting Noma out of here. Once Merle sees we have her he’ll subdue Mauli and we’ll leave, if he hasn’t subdued her already”

Chapter Four

Wolfric had Mauli cornered. Lombard was guarding the exit and Fatima had her gun drawn and was ready to shoot in case she even thought of heading back down the hall. Merle stalked slowly towards her, teeth bared. “Give up.” Fatima said. “You can’t force us to forget, especially Merle, the wolf won’t let him, so just give up or we will kill you.”

“Why can’t you understand? I’ve given them children, I’ve done something no one else has done.”

“It doesn’t matter if you’ve cured some deadly disease, murdering innocent children is wrong.”

“Test subjects.”

Merle growled as he jumped on her and he clamped down on her arm as she brought it up to defend herself, angrily shaking his head and ripping her skin open so blood splattered all over the place. She pulled her hand away and his mouth was at her throat, his teeth pressing threateningly. It was a warning for her not to move or he would kill her. He could hear and smell Wolfric coming back and Fatima looked over her shoulder as her son came out cradling a small, beaten little girl.

“We have her baby, you just get them out of here.” She said.

“What are you going to do with all of her…research?” Keoki asked.

“Turn it over to someone who will actually use it for good.”

Keoki nodded and Lombard gave him the keys to the car. “Get her to the hospital, we’ll call Rick for transportation.”

“You guys be careful.” Wolfric said. “I’ll see you at the hospital

It felt like an eternity to get back to their vehicle. Wolfric and the boys were terrified she’d quit clinging to life before they got her somewhere. When they finally arrived at the car Wolfric had Keoki get in the passenger seat then handed him Noma. Nephi had settled in the back and they were on the road again as quickly as possible. “for future reference son do you know how to drive?”

“she taught me but you know the outside world better than I do so I’m glad you’re driving” It comforted Keoki how distressed Wolfric looked over Nomas state. It gave him more confidence his parents really did care about them and would let them live a real life. He hugged Noma to him as he hoped she would be a part of that life. “you’re so close Noma. Hang on” he whispered to her. Wolfric would have loved to take Noma back home but they were too many hours away, it was too risky so they drove to the nearest hospital. Once she was stable they could get picky about who was taking care of her.

They parked and rushed inside, Keoki holding tight to Noma while Wolfric hastily filled the woman at the desk in about the situation. There was a lot of beings there waiting to be seen but Noma was taken back quickly, Wolfric, Nephi and Keoki following since Wolfric had already told her they’d be coming. He knew Keoki and Nephi wouldn’t have been able to handle letting strangers take her out of sight. He thought a lot of the fact they were able to trust anybody at all just based on what little he knew about them and their life.

The medical staff wanted to see if Keoki and Noma were truly Wolfrics since the story sounded so crazy. Even in todays world it was a bit mind blowing to think that you might not need two genders to create a baby. They drew blood from Wolfric and the kids, telling him they’d give him an answer for sure as soon as they could. “I know you two are ours Keoki” He looked over at Nephi “Merle and I are going to find your parents but you’re welcome with us and even if you do end up being with them we’ll make sure you see Noma and Keoki”

“How’re you going to find them. I know for a fact they aren’t in this world”

“I’m sure somewhere in that building we took you from there’s information about where”

“do you…do you think they’ll want me…”

“Yes, Merle and I are overjoyed. I can’t even imagine them not wanting you”

Merle moved back and let Lombard haul Mauli to her feet when Rick finally arrived. He had a shotgun slung over his shoulder and gave Fatima a smile. “Well dang, I missed a party.”

“Did you bring the big truck?”

“Yes ma’am.” He pulled a set of cuffs of his belt and some very special restraints.” He tossed them to her and Fatima locked them around Mauli’s wrists. “I couldn’t get it all the way up here, but it’s close enough.”

“That’s fine.” Fatima patted Mauli down, pulling out a set of keys.

“Must be to her research.” Lombard said.

“We’ll send people back, let’s just get her locked up so we can check on the kids.”

When Merle, Lombard and Fatima were done handling Mauli they went straight to the hospital Wolfric had told them he was at with her. They found Keoki alone with her and Noma still barely holding on to life. She had been cleaned up and bandaged so she looked better but her heartbeat was still so faint. While Merle asked Keoki where Wolfric was Fatima couldn’t resist walking over to their new grandchild and gently caressing her face “Wolfric is getting Nephi something to eat. Apparently when he woke Mauli already had taken Noma away and whatever she was doing with her caused her to not think about feeding Nephi today”

“you poor babies” Fatima was still looking at Noma. Lombard asked “what’re they saying about Noma?”

“Not a lot yet beyond but they did confirm our DNA is from Merle and Wolfric. I mean they confirmed his”

“I know you’re both mine without any tests done here”

“Thats what Wolfric said but he humored them”

“How’s Nephi doing, emotionally, do you know?” Fatima was now looking at Keoki “I think he’s going to be okay. Wolfric assured him that even if he ends up living with his parents that he’ll still see us”

“Of course, you all have to feel like siblings”

“yeah” Fatima walked over and hugged Keoki who was slow to hug back but he did. He had just been surprised. “you looked like you needed it”

“I just wish she’d wake up. I’ve seen her creations just shut down too many times and…I just love Noma so much and it will be especially cruel if she dies now, before she knows she was freed from Mauli”

When Wolfric finally returned, Merle immediately pulled him into a tight hug. Wolfric let out a sigh and relaxed into his mate. “I’m so glad you’re all safe.” He pulled back. “Did you get her locked up?”

“Yeah, the kids are safe and she’ll never hurt anyone again.”

“Thank goodness.” They went over and stood next to the bed. “She’s so weak, she has to make it Merle.”

“She will, I’ll spend every last penny I have before I let her slip away. She’s our baby,” he reached over and rested his hand on Keoki’s shoulder, “you both are.”

“When do you think we could go look for my parents?” Nephi asked.

“When you’re ready.” Wolfric answered.

“We’re going to have someone go through all of Mauli’s research and see if they can find their exact location.” Fatima added.

Noma was completely healed of her wounds two days later and the doctors there decided she could now be flown to any hospital Wolfric and Merle wanted so they had her moved close to their home. It was there Merle got into contact with the professionals he wanted working with Noma. He was willing to pay for anything to have her cared for and looked at by the best so whatever they wanted of him, weather it be an expensive hotel to stay at our ridiculous amounts of money he paid it and got her set up. They waited another seventeen days for one of her doctors to enter with a means of waking her up. “Merle, Wolfric, I can’t promise this will do what I’m hoping it will but I’m very very sure. As sure as someone can be working in uncharted waters. I just need your permission to try” he had the needle ready and as much as it scared them they allowed him to inject her. They watched eagerly and their hearts sank again when she still laid there.

It was a few hours later when she opened her eyes, first seeing Lombard who had come to visit again. She gasped and moved her head to look for Nephi or Keoki. They were there, Wolfric had gotten them from home just incase the doctors idea had worked. Nephi hurried over to her, climbing up on her bed “it’s okay Noma. Keoki found your family.” he pointed at Lombard “that’s your grandpa” he then showed her Fatima and then her parents. She seemed more taken in by Wolfric at first who just smiled gently at her. “he does look a lot like Keoki huh?” Nephi said and Noma nodded “so you know he found the right guys. This family loves you, us. We’re going to be safe now. You don’t have to be scared”

She lifted her hand “whats this?”

“its’ something they’ve been using to keep you healthy. It’s an IV”

“I don’t like how it feels in my hand”

“well maybe they can take it out now” she looked over at Merle who was already moving to the door. The same doctor came back “I’m so happy to see you awake Noma. You have really pretty green eyes”

“does she still need this?” Nephi pointed to the IV “I think we can do without it as long as she’s awake”

“does this mean she can be home with us now?” Wolfric asked and the doctor said “I’d feel more comfortable with her being here atleast through tomorrow. Then she can go home but we’ll still need to see her. I more treated a symptom, not the cause. We’re still reading through all of Maulis research and coming to understand Keoki, Nephi and Nomas bodies. I need time to figure out why some shut down while others, like Nephi and Keoki thrive.”

“We understand, thank you.”

“Of course.”

Wolfric turned back to Noma. “I’m sorry you have to go through more treatments, but know we only want you better.”

“I know, thank you.” She snuggled into Nephi, her eyes filling with tears. “Nephi, we’re free, we’re really free and they want us.”

“Oh baby, of course we do.” Wolfric couldn’t help but move to sit by her and Merle stood at his side, his hands resting gently on his shoulders. Wolfric took her hand and she squeezed it.

“You’re all going to have a real life now.” Merle said.

Noma spent the rest of that day and the next in the hospital and everyone was happy that her color and energy had improved. They made sure to make another appointment for her and promised to make note of any changes in her. Wolfric and Merle got the kids moved in and Fatima and Lombard volunteered to locate Nephi’s parents for him so Wolfric and Merle wouldn’t have to leave them.

Their first night at home Wolfric woke in the night to find Merle gone. Wolfric got up and quietly walking to Nomas room, guessing he was there. Sure enough he was standing outside the door of her room. Wolfric smiled at him and Merle moved to hug Wolfric “I’m just a little worried about her”

“she’s going to be okay, you were more sure of that than me when we were searching for her”

“I know, I just needed to check on her. I need the doctors to tell me I don’t have to worry about her anymore”

“Love is an amazing thing Merle. Maybe all she needed was parents who love her. She’ll be okay” Merle held Wolfric a little tighter then kissed his head “well lets get back to bed so we aren’t tired when they wake up”

~ The End

Aurelia & Rees

Chapter One

She hobbled as she ran but she went as fast as she could away from her attackers. As far as she knew she had killed them but she couldn’t be sure enough not to run. Two human men had tried to rape her, probably thinking she was a human woman since only her ears would give away she was an elf. It had still been difficult to get away, they had been so crazed and hungry to take her. She wondered while she ran if they had been on some type of drugs. Thunder crashed and rain poured, making it hard to know where she was going but she kept on until she saw a castle. She ran to the door, desperate for help.

Aurelia pounded and begged for help despite knowing the loud storm outside probably hid her wails. She choked on blood that was begging to pool in her mouth, her vision growing faint just as the door opened. She couldn’t make the being out at all but she could have sworn she heard the girl exclaim “mom!?” Rees Practically knocked over the table as he got up to rush to the door. His dates heart stuttered, it couldn’t be, his mate was dead, had been dead for a few hundred years. Brynmor has come running too, having heard his sister Pretoria yell.

He had already picked Aurelia off the ground when his father arrived at the door “It’s…” he looked like he might cry “It’s obviously not actually mom dad but we need to help her. She’s hurt really bad” Brynmor took her to the nearest bed while Pretoria grabbed a few things. Rees and even his date began helping her and a few hours later they knew she was going to make it through her injuries. It was then the woman that had been with Rees pulled him out the room and said “That’s your wifes reincarnation. She looks just like her and I may have just been her friend but even I can feel that that IS Amelia” Emotion played through his eyes “I know, I knew from the second I saw her in my sons arms”

She crossed her arms, not knowing what to do with them “It’s okay Rees, thats your soulmate in there…even before she showed up tonight I knew we were not that serious. I mean we’ve been dating a few years and I stay a night at most with you three. I mean, you were sweet and I when we began dating by taking down the family pictures with her in it and putting them in the basement but I know about that one in your nightstand. I’ve caught you staring at it with tears running down your face many times. She’s your soulmate, not me and I’m going to bow out gracefully okay. You two were so happy together, you had the kind of happiness you can only have with a soulmate and maybe this frees me back up to find mine.”

Rees hugged her “I’m sorry”

“It’s okay, I hurt right now but I’ll be fine. Even if we had been anything near serious I would have bowed out tonight. I always wanted what you two had. You need to focus on her, you need to help her remember you or atleast get her to fall in love again. She’s an elf this time, she wont have that intuition that tells some beings your soulmates but her soul has already found you once. It’ll know, even if its deep down, some part of her will know you guys” As she left Rees cried but not over the ex that was leaving It was over how emotionally charged he was and grateful to the universe it saw fit to give Amelia back to him.

Aurelia woke slowly, her body thrumming with pain as she blinked her eyes open. She could feel she was laying in a bed in a dimly lit room, that she was covered and warm. It took a moment for her ears to focus, but when they did, she picked up the sound of soft, rhythmic breathing. She wasn’t alone. She turned her head, groaning as she did and it woke the person sitting in the chair next to the bed. “You’re awake.” He said as he moved to sit next to her, his hand taking hers gently. She watched a myriad of emotions play across his face; sadness and joy, but mostly relief.

“Where am I?” She asked softly.

“In my home.” He let his fingers brush over her forehead, pushing some strands of her hair back. She felt herself warm at his tenderness and wondered if it was because he seemed to be the exact opposite of her attackers.

“You heard me.” She felt herself tearing up and he gently shushed her.

“My daughter did.”

“Thank goodness, I was so scared.”

Rees started to pull his hand away, wondering if him touching her was making everything worse, but she actually held onto him. “You’re safe here, I promise.”

She felt safe here, especially now that she was holding his hand in return. It was odd to her since she didn’t really know these beings but she felt in her heart she truly was safe as long as she was here in this castle. Rees’s heart was racing and it made him grateful she had come back as an elf. If she could sense how she effected him it would probably be scary, especially after being attacked since she had no idea she was a reincarnation. It was near impossible to resist the urge to lean down and kiss her but he fought it, telling himself he had one chance to do this right. If he scared her and she ran out of his castle he may never find her again. Elves were smart and incredibly resourceful. If she decided she wanted to hide from him she just might be successful at that. She was smart in her past life too and he wondered if that had effected what the gods chose for her to be in this life.

When she let him go he forced himself to pull his hand away, she probably needed to eat anyway. “I can make you a salad if you’re hungry. You were in rough shape and will still need to rest a day or two more. I think it would be smart to take it easy on your stomach”

“That sounds really nice. Thank you so much. Thank you for helping me. I promise, I’ll figure out something to do to thank you when I’m better” He stood “I’m going to call my daughter to sit in here while I’m gone.” he couldn’t risk her being alone so injured, he couldn’t lose her again. His heart barely made it through the first time. If they didn’t have two children he probably wouldn’t have. He had muddled through his pain for them, knowing she’d have wanted him to.

When Pretoria entered the room Aurelia was sitting up causing Pretoria to gasp “you should be laying down, your injuries” she seemed embarrassed “I just wanted less work for you when you came in here…I…well I have to pee and I wanted to ask you instead of one of the men here. I could barely force myself to run when I got here. I’m not sure how well I’m going to be able to walk”

“Just let me help you up next time okay. You’re no trouble, I’m a vampire. I can lift you and much more without struggle” Elves didn’t tend to hold any racial grudges so Pretoria felt it was safe to let her mother know what they were, even if she couldn’t quite tell her yet she used to be a vampire. Pretoria helped her mother to the nearest bathroom “there wouldn’t be any shame in it if you wanted me to come in with you”

“I don’t think I could go with anybody in there”

“alright then, I’ll be right outside the door” She couldn’t believe what good vampires she had stumbled upon. This woman had looked near panicked for a total stranger when she went in the room and her deep worry right now was obvious on her face. Aurelia went into the bathroom and shut the door. She realized it was a good choice to ask for help because she felt even more pain now than when she was laying down. It was hard not to make any sounds indicating how much she hurt but she managed, not wanting the female vampire to burst in here to help her. When she came out Pretoria looked just about as relieved as the male vampire had when she woke up.

Once back in bed she decided to ask your names “what’s your name?”

“Pretoria”

“Thats so beautiful”

“My mother picked it, it was her absolute favorite girls name”

“I think it’s mine too” Pretoria grinned with both amusement and sadness. “My fathers name is Rees and my brothers name is Brynmor” she felt emotion tug at her heart. She was about to speak again but a massive headache cut her off “are you okay?”

“My head” Pretorias mind was going a million miles a second with panic but she hoped maybe her soul was trying to tell her something, to remind her of who she once was. She had picked the name for her brother too. He was named after one of her mothers Uncles. He had raised her and died a few years before Brynmor was born so she had wanted to honor her Uncle by naming her son after him.

“How is she?” Brynmor asked his father as he helped him chop vegetables.

“Good, I think.”

“Is it really her?” Brynmor was hopeful that this wasn’t some fluke.

Rees nodded. “Yeah, it really is, I can feel it. Even if she didn’t look like her, I would know, it’s your mother.”

Brynmor swallowed and Rees put his knife down to hug his son. “I’m sorry, it’s just, she’s really back.”

“It’s okay, I feel the same.” He let him go and patted his shoulder. “We have to remember to be patient with her and give her time.”

“I know.” Rees wanted desperately for her to remember, but he knew he couldn’t push her to hard to fast or she might run. They put everything is a big bowl then he made one for Aurelia while Brynmor covered the bowl and put it away.

Chapter Two

When he returned to the room Rees could see Aurelia was in pain “what happened?”

“we were just talking, I think shes okay”

“I’ll be fine, its getting better. My head just really hurt for a moment”

“maybe we need someone more skilled at medical care to come here”

“No, please don’t do that. I couldn’t put you all through more trouble. It passed, I’m alright” They were talking, Rees too thought that pain might be her soul trying to tell her brain something so he didn’t push it further. Brynmor came in a few moments after his father, just wanting to see her “Hey. Brynmor right?” Aurelia asked, setting her fork down “yeah, um…what’s your name?”

“Aurelia”

“where did you come from?” Now he just wanted to hear her voice. It was slightly different but it was still his mothers voice. “son, she’s recovering. We need to let her eat” Rees said, trying not to sound too stern and make her uncomfortable.

“Oh…I’m sorry, yeah, I’m being rude sorry” he walked out too quickly for her to stop him. Aurelia looked at Rees “he was alright”

“You really should finish eating. I’ll go get him back when you’re done” Pretoria said. Aurelia picked her fork back up and finished her salad. Just as she said she would Pretoria took the dish’s, promising she’d get her brother as soon as they were in the sink. Meanwhile, Aurelia laid back down. “so whose room is this? I’m not taking one of theirs am I?” she asked Rees.

“No, this room actually hasn’t been used in an incredibly long time. The kids mother…well…she was very close to her an Uncle of hers. She even named our son after him which was fine with me. I didn’t care what we called our children and the names she picked meant a lot to her. He would come to see us so much we gave him his own room, which is this one. We didn’t put anybody else in it after he died, you’re the first”

She was curious about the kids mother. The way he said was had so much pain in it so she knew she had passed, not left. She wouldn’t hurt him by asking, it would be selfish. “what made her so close to him? What was he like?”

“He raised her. Amelia’s father didn’t treat her very well. When Brynmor realized she was being abused he took her in and told her father if he so much as looked at you ever” He noticed her weird expression and he realized he had said you “sorry, I meant her obviously. I’m tired”

“Oh my gosh yeah, you were sleeping when I woke. I’m sorry, we can talk later. Go to bed. Your son wanted to talk to me anyway”

“it’s alright”

“No, I feel so bad keeping you all up…you’ve done so much for me” The thought of leaving her side mangled in his heart “I’ll go to bed when Pretoria fetches my son.”

“are you sure?”

“yes…anyway…he told Amelias father he’d kill him if he looked at her again. He let her mother see her from time to time but when she finally left Amelias father she quit coming to see Amelia too. She was only seven when her mother completely left her life so Amelia didn’t remember much”

“That was really sweet of her Uncle, to protect her”

“He was a good vampire. I wouldn’t say he had lived a perfect life, before raising Amelia anyway but he had a good heart”

“different creatures have their own struggles.” Pretoria and Brymor entered the room and Rees stood, leaving as he said he would. Brynmor sat on the bed and Pretoria took the chair. “so, where are you from”

“My parents are nomads, I’m not really from anywhere.”

“why weren’t they with you when you were attacked?”

“well, you might think I’m crazy but one morning, a few years ago I woke up before my parents and saw a couple standing beside me. I jumped up and was about to yell but the woman shushed me. I don’t know, she looked so kind I just stood up, deciding not to wake my parents. She touched my heart, well, my chest above where it is and said “you need to listen to your heart sweetheart. You should go, see where it leads you. It’s been trying to take you somwhere a very long time but your parents always get you offtrack. Leave your parents and follow your heart. You’ll be so happy you did”

She sighed “I don’t know, my heart raced and all of me was ready to go. I know it’s nuts, they were two complete strangers but I felt like I had been ignoring my heart as soon as she said that to me. I made my parents breakfast then while they ate I told them I needed to have my own adventure for awhile. They weren’t for it at first, especially my dad. He was so worried about me traveling alone but they eventually saw I needed to do this…you know, because two strangers told me to” she sighed “and look where it got me, hurt and bothering you kind people. I was probably being dumb but I’ve had a great adventure coming here.”

“That doesn’t sound dumb at all.” Brynmor said. “They always say the heart wants what the heart wants.”

“Brynmor’s right.” Pretoria said with a warm smile.

Aurelia smiled back. “I guess you’re right. I’m just sorry we had to meet like this.”

“We’re just glad you’re alright and as soon as you’re feeling up to it, I’m sure our father would love to show you around.”

“I’d really like that, thank you.”

They continued to talk to her for awhile longer, doing their best not to give away who she was. They told her a couple more stories from their childhood then decided she needed to rest. She had been through a lot and they didn’t want to exhaust her. They both jumped a little when Rees opened his door and he called them over. “How is she?” He asked.

“You’re supposed to be sleeping dad and she’s good.” Pretoria answered.

“I know, but I wanted to talk to both of you first. Brynmor, tomorrow you and I are going out to try and find the men who did that to her. I want to make sure they can’t attack anyone else.” He then looked to Pretoria. “I want you to spend time with your mother,” he sighed, “with Aurelia I mean.” They both nodded. “You two get some rest, okay?”

“You too dad.” Brynmor said.

Rees was eager to get out and start hunting the men that hurt Aurelia so he barely waited for the sun to come up before waking his son. Brynmor didn’t have to be urged awake long before he was up and ready to go out with his father. Rees was an incredibly old vampire but he had long since went through grueling trial and error to make his body able to roam around in sunlight. Amelia had been able to do it and loved being out during the day so they hadn’t been together long before he wanted to be able to do the same thing. He wasn’t sure what happened but evolution seemed to still be taking place since the younger vampires were almost all born able to be in the sun.

“I think it’s important after what you did to the group that killed mom in her past life to ask what we intend to do with them? I mean I want to scare these guys but…you may have taken things a little too far in the past dad”

“I wont be burning any homes or anything like that. Even I know I went too far, had too many casualties of my anger. I turned into a monster when I lost your mother…I’m just glad Pretoria talked sense into me. I was still a father and I needed to get a hold of myself. I haven’t lost your mother this time so no, I wont be be turning back into that monster I regret you and Pretoria saw…I’m more thankful than ever she got me to stop…going down that path I would have ended up with every vampire hunter in existence after me…I may have died too then I wouldn’t still be here for your mothers rebirth.”

Brynmor made a face and his father sighed “don’t you think for a second I’m also not still around because of you two. Now that she’s back I know it wont alarm you to say this but you and Pretoria are the only reasons I raged instead of killing myself. I need you three, I mean it” Brynmor decided to tell his father what Aurelia had told them about her journey here then added “I think she’ll stay too. Her soul remembers enough it guided her back to us”

It was the smell of blood that brought them to where one of the men lay dead. This is where it had happened. They could smell Aurelia’s scent all over and around him. “She killed him.” Brynmor said.

“The other left him to die.” Rees replied as he followed more drops of blood into the forest. “He was wounded though, your mother made sure of that.”

“What should we do with this one?”

“Leave him, after what he did, just leave him. I want to find the other one.”

“Alright.” They continued on, leaving the first man’s body for the animals and the earth.

“Aurelia?” Pretoria said softly as she opened her mother’s door.

“Hmm?” Aurelia jerked away, disoriented and confused for a moment until she remembered where she was. She let her eyes move to Pretoria and for a moment, seeing the young woman’s smiling face, had her heart aching.

“Sorry, I just thought maybe you were hungry.” Pretoria said as she nudged the door all the way open and stepped in with a breakfast tray.

“Oh, sure.” She started pushing herself up and Pretoria quickly sat the tray on top of the chest of drawers and went over to help her. “Thank you.”

“I’m happy to help”

“I’m feeling better this morning”

“That’s good to hear, please eat. I know it will help you even more” Aurelia slowly ate her breakfast, enjoying it. “Have you already eaten?”

“Hopefully it doesn’t make you uncomfortable but I had blood this morning so I’ll be fine for awhile”

“animal or do you have someone to feed off of?”

“a friend of mine allows me to feed on him from time to time but I had animal this morning. Just to put it out there since some of our kind makes it so it has to be said but my father, brother and I don’t feed on anybody unwillingly”

“I wasn’t worried…I’m so thankful for you three. I would have died if not for you. Jeez if you wanted blood it would be the least I could do” Pretoria smiled “we truly expect nothing in return but getting to know you. You seem so interesting. Once you’re better are you going to stay a bit”

“If I’m welcome, your father would like me here?”

“He wants to get to know you too”

“where is he now” she felt this tug on her heart, like she needed to know. “He’s out making sure those men that hurt you are really dead or not going to do such a thing again”

“They were so crazed, especially for human men.”

“well my father and brother will see to it no other woman has to worry about them.” Aurelia finished her breakfast and Pretoria took her plate. When Pretoria came back she asked “why did you pick your tattoos?”

“I adore bees and I just thought it would be pretty to have the flowers going up my sides.”

“I didn’t get a good look at the flowers but I love the bee”

“well there aren’t any men here if you’d like to see them” Pretoria helped Aurelia with her shirt “wow, they are really pretty. You must have paid a lot to have them done”

“I didn’t pay with anything but my time. This particular tattoo artist needed help with his children. You see as I was wandering I ended up staying in this town awhile just because I thought it was beautiful. I became friends with him and learned, like your father, he was raising kids on his own. He wanted to go study under an artist a few towns away but he couldn’t take his children. He asked me to watch over them and that he’d pay me whatever I wanted when he returned. He also had more than enough money in his basement for me to take care of them so it truly only took my time. They were sweet girls. When he returned I asked he put that skill to work and give me flowers up my sides. I hung around a few more weeks then went on my way”

“what’s his name, I might want some one day. I’ve never thought about tattoos before but these are so pretty. It was well worth it for him to go study with someone”

“yeah, his name is Jolduc Khiz. His girls, should they still be at home when you go are Esmeralda and Prim”

“cute, did he tell you why he was alone?”

“she left him and the girls for another man.”

“aw”

“yeah, the biggest shame about it is she doesnt want to see her girls…I don’t have children so maybe I cant judge but how can anybody just leave their children”

“I know my mom would have never left us if she hadn’t been taken away”

“would it hurt too much to tell me what happened to her Pretoria?” Pretoria took a long breath in then let it go, looking uncomfortable. “I’m sorry, that was so rude”

“No, no its fine. It’s just still hard to talk about it. You’d think time would make it easier but…” There was a long, sorrow filled pause from Pretoria before she began her story “We were all always together besides my moms walks. She had been taking long walks alone since she was little. She needed that peaceful time to herself. I mean we would all go sometimes but every now and then she still wanted to go alone. It would always be a few hours but that day she had left right after breakfast and we still hadn’t seen her after lunch. Dad got worried, he told us to stay incase she came back but he was going to look for her for awhile.”

Pretoria tried to discreetly brush a tear away “then dad didn’t come home so Brynmor and I left…I wish we hadn’t” Pretoria couldn’t talk anymore as she could once again envision her dead mother”

“I’m so sorry, you don’t have to tell me” Pretoria clung to Aurelia, happy that they had atleast saved her in this life. She was back and she knew her dad would probably never let her out of at least one of their sights ever again if he could help it. “Theres this particularly nasty group of vampire hunters that aren’t just happy with killing vampires. They often humiliate and torture them. We don’t know what she went through but by the time we had went looking for her she was cut up. They had hung her body parts from different trees”

“Oh jesus…where was your father”

“He was on a murder spree. My dad, as most of the original vampires, have states similar to demons where they lose their mind to rage. Every man that had touched my mother died and sadly, so did their families. It was all Brynmor and I could do to get him back to normal…he did a lot of things I know he regrets” Pretoria could see a bit of concern on Aurelias face “don’t worry, only the men that hurt you will answer to my father today, You’re alive and I think it was pure grief and sorrow that drove him into that state…he did and still does love my mother immensely. They were together thousands of years and they were a pretty sweet couple. I don’t think I’ve ever seen two beings near that happy with eachother”

Chapter Three

The man panicked the moment he looked over his shoulder and spotted Rees and Brynmor. Both of them could see and smell it and Rees directed Brynmor forward. His son put on a burst of speed that had him suddenly standing in front of the man and as he skidded to a halt, Rees grabbed him from behind and slammed him to the ground. “Please.” He screamed. “Please, please, I’m sorry.” He was covering his head and crying his entire body shaking.

“Do you have any idea what you’ve done?” Rees snapped.

“No, please, I just woke up and…and Eli was…he was and I was covered in blood. Please, I’m sorry.”

“Dad?” Brynmor grabbed his shoulder. “I don’t think he’s lying.”

Rees let out a sigh as he pulled the man up. “Look at me.” He ordered and the man forced himself to look into Rees’s eyes. “What’s the last thing you remember?”

“I…we…” he swallowed. “Walking through the woods with Eli, we…we took a shortcut and then…nothing. Eli…did I kill him?”

Rees stood in thoughtful silence for a moment before saying “my wife killed your friend. You two tried to rape her. Maybe you walked into an enchantment and didn’t realize or any number of things but I can tell you aren’t lieing. You’re going to take me to the last spot you remember”

“what if something happens again”

“My son and I would never fall into something like that. I’ve trained him well and only the smart live as long as I have”

“I’m…I’m sorry for what we did to her…normally we’re nothing like that”

“you two didn’t get anywhere with her. She’s tough” Rees let the human man go “show me”

“I’m…I’m hurt badly too. Could I get tended to first?”

“so you can tell the other humans vampires are bullying you?”

“No, no I swear…we obviously hurt someone you love…I wont try anything funny…I just…I”

“dad” Brynmor said and Rees sighed “My son will go with you and I’ll wait here” He could tell the human wanted to ask why but held his tongue. It suited Rees, telling him honestly why might scare him into not cooperating and he didn’t want something else losing its senses and trying to hurt Aurelia or anybody else again. Brynmore wasn’t sure why his dad didn’t want to go into the humans village. Surely nobody was alive anymore who would remember him.

Rees decided to lay down and think up as many possibilities as he could. He wanted to go home, he wanted to be near Aurelia again. He was so lost in his head it seemed like no time atall had passed when Brynmor returned with the human male. Rees stood, staring the man down until the human moved to show them where to go. He took them to the last point he remembered “this is it. I hope I’m remembering right…I cant imagine what would make us dumb enough to mess with a vampire woman”

“She’s an elf” Brynmor said and the man said “I’m sorry”

“don’t be so scared. I’m sure she’ll even feel sad for your friend once she learns you two weren’t in control. A lot of mistakes were made…we’re just glad she found her way home” The man glanced over at Rees who wasn’t paying attention to them. He was absorbed in the environment as he careful studied his surroundings.

Rees could see where the two men had passed through and he squatted down, picking up the crushed cap of a mushroom. He sighed as he stood and held it out. “Do you know what this is?” He asked the man.

“No, I’ve never seen it before.”

“Brynmor. ”

“It’s an otrova mushroom.”

“The spot where you and your friend walked is covered in them. They’re an invasive species and incredibly dangerous.” He tossed the broken mushroom. “When they feel threatened, they release spores into the air and cause a temporary insanity in anyone who inhales it.”

“We didn’t know.” He dropped his head into his hands. “We always go out together, we have been since we were kids, but we didn’t know.” He swallowed then took a deep breath. “I have to bury Eli, I can’t leave him in the woods.”

“I will be able to get rid of these but it will take time. Brynmor, you may help the human while I do this”

“He…he doesn’t have to” The mans voice trembled. Brynmor said “I’d be happy to, we know it wasn’t his fault and my mother isnt a murderous monster either just so you know. She was terrified and just trying to” The man shook his head “I understand, really, I wont go telling anybody anything negative. We…we tried to rape her…I understand…I’m not sure what I’m going to say about his death to his family but I don’t blame her” Brynmor walked away with the human, hoping to get the burial done quickly so he could help his father.

When they were out of earshot the man asked “how can your father be sure he wont go mad with them”

“If he says he knows what he’s doing he knows.”

Rees had to burn them, all while being careful with the rest of the forest. He couldn’t risk anyone else happening upon them, not even one. He wanted to take the time to scour the rest of the forest, but he knew that would take ages and he wanted to get back to Aurelia and explain what had happened. He would have Brynmor accompany him of regular trips to scour the woods once everything was settled. He found his anger dissipating as he watched the fire burn out and when he finally caught up with his son and the man, he was calmer than he had been. They had just finished burying Eli and Brynmor was doing his best to comfort him.

“So what now?” He wiped at his face.

“First, can I have your name?”

“Oh, it’s Oliver, sorry.”

“It’s fine.” Rees sighed. “I cannot hold what happened against you, Oliver, it wasn’t your’s or Eli’s fault.”

“What do I do?”

Rees looked to Brynmor who answered, “Come back with us, talk to the woman you attacked, we’ll explain everything.”

“wont I just upset her…I” he didn’t know what to add, he seemed to be having an internal struggle so Brnymor spoke again “you didn’t manage to rape her. She’s hurt and might be a bit startled when she sees you but I have a feeling that once she knows your side of things she’d want to see you again anyway to tell you herself not to feel guilty” Oliver swallowed “alright, I will come. I still don’t know what I’m going to say to everybody anyway. I don’t want to give you three any more problems. I’ve seen in my village before the fact we tried to rape her which caused her reaction will mean little”

Rees and Brynmor took Oliver to their home where they found Pretoria and Aurelia in the living room, sitting down and talking. “she’s doing so much better” Pretoria said excitedly but her expression changed when she noticed the man “that scent” she said softly. “allow me to explain” Rees started then explained to them why the men had attacked Aurelia. Aurelia’s eyes dampened “oh my…I’m so sorry. I was so scared and you two wouldn’t let me get away…I killed him because I felt I had to in the moment. I’m sorry”

“I understand, I’m horrified about what we tried to do…that that could be in me at all, weird mushrooms or not”

“some things have great power. The mushrooms turned you two into something you weren’t. Don’t feel guilty”

“I’m just glad you’re okay”

“I know you don’t feel I have anything to make up for but I feel bad about your friend. I owe you, anytime you need something, please come back to us so I can repent for his death. I mean it, I really want to”

Chapter Four

He held up his hands. “Please don’t, no one would ever blame you, truly. You were alone, against two of us, it was justified. Eli wouldn’t blame you, he wasn’t like that, he was a good man, kind and honest, he would want you to know it wasn’t your fault. You didn’t know, we didn’t know. So please.”

Rees could see how heartbroken Aurelia was for him and he gently placed a hand on Oliver’s shoulder. “How about you at least come by then, as often as you like, we’ll get to know each other and move past this.”

“I’d like that, thank you.” Oliver took a deep breath. “I just don’t know what to tell everyone back home.”

“I’ll go with you and explain.” Brynmor volunteered. “I’m sure I can hide the fact I’m a vampire.”

“You don’t have to hide, no one would bother you, they know better than that.” He nodded. “I would appreciate your help, I just don’t want them to think Eli was a monster.”

“You should rest.” Aurelia said. “You spent all night in the woods and you’re wounded.” She looked to Rees whose heart jumped in his chest. “He can stay right? He shouldn’t travel until he’s better.”

“Of course.” He sat down next to her, gently taking her hand.

“Thank you.”

He wanted to tell her anything she wanted was his command but he knew how weird that would sound. “don’t scare her” he thought to himself. “it’s the right thing to do” He held her hand a few more moments before getting up “let me show him to a room” Rees knew he needed to speak to Oliver about their situation with her. Not only to let him know he had helped guide his mate back to him but so he didn’t say something he shouldnt since Brynmor had repeatedly refereed to Aurelia as his mother.

Rees walked the man to a room in another hall then said “this is where you can stay but we need to talk about something important if you’re going to be interacting with her”

“yeah?”

“she’s a reincarnation…my wife…Aurelia has no idea about her past with us and it shouldn’t come from you. If we as a family decide to tell her it should come from us”

“Oh…that must be hard”

“Immensely”

“maybe if you told her it would help her remember…I mean there’s things that can be done”

“what if I scare her, she might not believe me and think me crazy”

“that woman in there? She’s no coward, she just invited a man who tried to rape her to stay in the same castle as her. I mean, I think she’d face the possibility head on” Rees gave him a long look that semi frightened Oliver. He finally said “thanks for the input, will you be needing anything?”

“I just want a bath” Rees pointed a few rooms away “theres a bath in there. I’ll tell Brynmor to bring you clothing”

“Thank you” Rees left the man without another word, pondering what he had said. HIs Amelia…his Aurelia had never been a coward a moment in her life. Maybe he was over worrying but with something as important as having her in his life again he wasn’t sure that was possible. He wanted her back, in any way he could have her and he knew the kids felt the same. If he handled this wrong, if he made the wrong choices he’d be breaking their hearts all over again as well. He had more than just his own heart to consider in all this.

When he came back to the room Aurelia was happily talking with her two kids “Hey Rees” his heart stuttered at the sound of his name coming from her. “He’s settled…what did you and my daughter do today?”

“talked mostly, I’m eager to be shown around though…would you mind doing that tomorrow? She said it would be best if you did” he smiled gently “if you still feel up to it yes”

“I want to know everything about this place. I’ve never been in a castle before. How did you build this or did you find it?”

“I built this, most vampires lived in castles in my time. It was the thing to do” She smiled ‘you do look like a classic” she said it with so much affection it even surprised her. “I’m sorry, was that…weird” he nervously chuckled “never be sorry, I know I haven’t updated my style…ever…my wife didn’t mind though”

“You all seem so wonderful, I’m sure she just felt lucky”

“I have something to take care of” Pretoria said to excuse herself and her brother followed suit, leaving their parents alone. “you don’t have to stay with me if you want to rest or something. You’ve done so much for me. I mean, you were out all this time because of me” he gently smiled again “I want to get to know you. Thank me by telling me more about your life Aurelia”

“when do you want me to start?”

“Your first memories if you so wish”

“alright…” she paused for a time, obviously thinking “my very first memory is one with my dad. We were just running and laughing, I think maybe we were playing tag. Most of my early memories are of my dad. He was always playing around with me. My moms wonderful too but I’m extra close with him.” She had been treated well in this life and loved by her parents, he was glad to hear it. She had deserved much better from her birth parents in her past life. “so it wasn’t hard growing up as a nomad?”

“I loved every second of it”

“so…do you think you’d ever be happy staying in one place” she shrugged “I never say never, if the right situation arose I’m sure I could be happy settling somewhere”

“whats your first memory of your mom?”

“We found this bow and arrow in a shop that was made for little kids. She bought it right there and took me to a practicing arena for it. It was fun” he nearly chuckled “they sound fun”

“yeah, I’ll have to find them again one day but not soon. I mean. I don’t feel like I’ve found what I left them to look for…I think I just told Pretoria about this but” she proceeded to tell him how she came to leave her parents side.

Rees’s heart was skipping in his chest. Someone had sent her to him, he had to believe that. “That’s amazing, Aurelia, truly.” He sat down next to her. “Aurelia I…” he let out a sigh.

“What?” She could tell something was troubling him and she couldn’t stop herself from taking his hand in hopes of comforting him. “Is everything alright?”

“Yes, sorry, it’s just I’m really happy to have you here. I hope it’s okay to say that, after everything that’s happened.”

She smiled and his entire being warmed. “I’m happy too.” She said.

“Truly?”

“Yeah, you and your children have been so sweet, it’s more than I expected.”

He burned to tell her everything, but he couldn’t, not yet. He could wait until tomorrow at least. “I’m glad.” He gave her a smile. “Would you like me to get you anything? Food? Something to drink? We could have dinner together or if you haven’t eaten.”

“I imagine you must be starving, eating together would be nice. I’m feeling well enough to come to the kitchen with you” she could see the concern on his face even before he answered “you were bleeding internally from fighting those men when you arrived”

“and since then you and your children have done an amazing job of taking care of me. I really don’t want to keep you in this room. Besides, I’m dieing to even just see a little more tonight”

“well…if you start to feel weak, just let me know”

“alright” She couldn’t believe how sweet this vampire and his children were. They were constantly tugging at her heart. Rees helped her out of bed which was cute even though not needed. They walked to his kitchen where she saw they had leftovers from the salad she had been made “a salad is just fine with me again”

“I can make you something, I don’t mind. We…could even cook together”

“alright, but really let me help” Rees pulled out the last of the rabbit they had and decided to make Aurelias favorite soup in her past life. If what some people said were true and you really could make an old soul remember a past life then he wanted to try everything he could to help her soul tell her new mind what it remembered. He began, having her do the easiest steps possible. This would take awhile to cook but he wasn’t interested in resting anyway. He had lived without his wife so long, he needed to be with her as much as he could.

“I suppose as a traveler you eat rabbit a lot” he said, just wanting to hear her speak again. “yeah but I like it. This already seems so good. Where did you learn to make it?”

“My late wife” he said gently “Oh, gosh, I end up bringing her up a lot with you three. I’m sorry”

“It’s alright, she’s an incredibly pleasant memory for us all”

“It sounded from Pretoria it’s been a long time. I’m surprised you’re still single” he felt uncomfortable with what he was about to say but he wouldn’t lie to her “I ended up with someone eventually, a friend of hers…it was a bit selfish of me because most of why I was able to with her is she felt like a piece of Amelia. They hungout so much…I…I think she always knew but she just wanted affection as I did.” She didn’t ask why they parted, she supposed they just both realized they weren’t really helping eachother in being together. “well…I hope you find someone you can actually love again” his smile held so many emotions, mostly sad which made her feel bad so she changed the subject “so um, are you close to your kids…like do you do a lot together normally?”

“we’re pretty close, it’s why they still live with me even though they’ve been adults a long time”

“thats sweet”

“I wouldn’t be here without them, they saved me, even after…I don’t deserve them.”

“I’m glad you’re still here, for what that’s worth. I mean if you weren’t, we never would have met.”

Rees smiled. “I feel the same, truly.”

They continued talking, him getting to know more about her life, about her family and about her journey to him. He told her stories about his life, about their life, hoping maybe one of his fondest memories would help spark hers. Aurelia loved the smell of the soup as it boiled and when Rees finally made her a bowl and she took her first bite, she paused at the taste. She felt herself tear up and jumped when Rees touched her shoulder, a look of concern on his face. “Sorry.” She said.

“Are you alright?”

“Yeah, of course, this is really good.”

“Maybe we should go back to your room.”

“No, it’s fine, really.”

“Alright, but after, you should rest.”

She nodded, wondering why she suddenly felt so emotional. A lot of her emotional responses were seeming to become odd and she wondered if it was just because of her ordeal before meeting these people. She took another spoon fool and held the flavorful soup in her mouth a few moments, emotion hitting her again. It was like her soul was aching. She swallowed and looked back at Rees, her eyes meeting his for a few long moments “I’m sorry” she couldn’t help but say again, seeing how concerned she was making him. “what’re you thinking about?”

“nothing really in particular. I probably do just need more rest after this”

“Would it be alright for me to carry you back…you’re worrying me”

“that would be really kind, thank you Rees” something flashed in her mind, of hugging him and thanking him as they sat down at the table with young children, his children. At least they had looked so similar to them she thought it was. She quickly finished her soup and began to wash it “hey, you’re still getting better. Myself or the kids will get that” she was so thrown off by everything that had been happening in her mind and emotionally since eating with him she didn’t protest “alright, will you take me back to my room then”

Rees lifted her into his arms, happy to have her close, however briefly it would be. They were nearly to the room she was staying in when she asked him “do you have any pictures of your kids when they were children?”

“I’m sure I do, most of what I have are paintings. My late wife loved to have us painted. You’d like to see?”

“If I wouldn’t be bothering you”

‘not at all. I’ll go get one after I have you settled in”

“you can’t just take me to it” he couldn’t, they would be with all the pictures that had her in them. “you need to rest” she did so it wasn’t a lie. He tucked her into bed so lovingly, she couldn’t resist hugging him. It surprised Rees but his body instantly responded. He had her close once more and demanded himself not to cry. He didn’t know what to say about it so he didn’t and she didn’t say anything more as he walked out the door.It hit him once he was out he never told his son to bring Oliver clothes but knowing his children one of them had checked on the human.

He went to retrieve one of the paintings of his children, promising himself he would check on Oliver before he went to bed. He had been so wrapped up in Aurelia and everything that had happened, that he had been being a bad host. His eyes caught hers when he came back into her room and he couldn’t help but pause there for a moment. His heart thumped in his chest when she smiled and he had to force himself to move again. “Sorry.” He said as he crossed over to her.

“It’s alright.”

“I shouldn’t stare, it’s rude.”

“Then we’re both in trouble.” She teased and he couldn’t help but smile.

“I was going to bring one of the bigger ones, but I decided against it. This one though, is one of my favorites.” He sat down next to her and turned the painting so she could see it. He remembered that day very vividly because it had been so hard to get Brynmor to sit still.

Chapter Five

She tried not to let her expression change too much as she looked at this painting. She had seen those two as children. Could she have really guessed so accurately? It was weird but maybe that was all it was. Her mind just had shrunk the two down incredibly well. “they were so adorable” her eyes grew a little damp but she didn’t cry. “Yeah, Brynmor would not sit still for this picture. We almost gave up…my wife and I I mean”

“I’m glad you two got to capture it. He’s as adorable then as he is handsome now. Pretoria grew up beautiful herself.”

“They had a gorgeous mother, I guess that helped Brynmor aswell because he certainly didn’t get it from me. I just tend to scare people. I think one of the things I loved most about my late wife was that she never feared me for a moment” He noticed her gaze go from the children to him “I think you’re incredibly handsome Rees,don’t call yourself scary” she blushed, quickly looking away from him and wondering why she had said that out loud. “Um…you should get rest too Rees. You ran around all that time solving what happened and taking care of Oliver. I’m…getting tired” she felt awkward and was a bit overwhelmed with herself and thoughts in general.

“Please call me if you need anything alright”

“I will” he almost leaned down to kiss her head but managed not to “goodnight Aurelia” His voice was so loving and sad. He was such a sweet vampire, she could definitely see how someone could fall in love with him. When he shut the door she looked down at the picture again and whispered to herself “what did that couple want me to find…could it be…you three?” she almost felt stupid saying it. Amelia sounded so perfect, she could probably never fill her shoes here. She laid back against the headboard and prayed softly “Gods and goddess’s, please help me. If you can, give me some sort of sign. Is this where I was supposed to end up or am I just enamored with this family and want to think my heart was leading me here”

She looked at the picture awhile longer then settled down for the night, hoping everyone else slept well. Another violent storm woke her late in the night, just like the one she had found herself in the night she came to this castle. She gasped when she saw a figure in her room but relaxed when she saw the man who had come to her. She looked around and asked “where is the woman?”

“Humble is busy”

“are you a god, is that why you’re here again” he chuckled “No but I have a few assisting me now with my work”

“your work”

“thats not what I’m here to explain. You asked for more guidance…well, get out of bed.” she got up, hoping a head injury didn’t have her going insane. Those men had hit her quite a few times. Once they stepped out of the room he held a finger up to his mouth to tell her to keep quite so she did, following him all the way down to the final floor of the castle”why are we here?” she asked in a whisper. He started rumaging and pulled out a painting that made her legs so weak she almost fell “wha…what”

“I think you know what I’m telling you Aurelia…or should I say…Amelia”

“but…how…what”

“don’t hyperventilate on me, sit, please”

“but…thats me!”

“in your past life. You are the wife and mother they keep speaking of”

“they…do they actually know”

“They felt it, you feel it too, I know you do. That soul of yours was begging to come back. Even I felt it desperate desire to find Rees and your children as my wife and I were passing you by that night. You’ve wanted to run back to him from the moment you were born. Didn’t you used to draw a lot of vampire art Aurelia, didn’t you always make up games where you lived in a castle and wasn’t your very first make believe friend named Rees” she felt light headed as it all came rushing back. Childhood felt like so long ago but as she stood there she realized his words were true “what are you”

“what I am and the gods that help me aren’t important right now unless you don’t believe you’re Amelia” Tears started tumbling down her face “I…I think I believe you”

“Good, Humble, my wife loves a good romance story. I understand yours was particularly beautiful. You two meant the world to eachother and those kids have missed you immensely. You left a hole in their hearts and I think even if we hadn’t woken up your soul you would have never felt complete without them. The bond you all had in your previous life was much too strong”

“when she touched me…”

“she just helped you hear”

“it really lead me back here”

“You and Rees are meant for one another.”

“why didn’t they show me this”

“I dont think they want to lose you all over again. Not everyone believes souls are reincarnated. You might have thought them crazy even with these pictures. Go to Rees and I’ll return to my Humble”

“I’m grateful” she wiped her face before continuing “but you cant cliffhanger me like this. Will you two come back when you have time. I have to know more” he chuckled “well you are an elf this time, your kind is notorious for being hungry for information. Lucky for you Humble loves romances like the one you have with Rees. I’m sure she’ll lunge at the opportunity to see you two back together. She would have come now but she couldn’t”

“whats your name, I dont think you’ve told me”

“Jase” she had almost forgot about the storm until it scared her “easy now, hurt yourself again and you’ll break three hearts” Jase said in an amused voice. Aurelia ran up the stairs and Jase smiled, setting the painting back down and used the magic that brought him to return him to Humble. Suddenly Brynmor was infront of her, looking disheveled. “are you okay? I heard running. Did something happen?” he started looking her over for wounds. She hugged him “You’re my son…I cant believe it” His heart nearly stopped “Mom…do you remember”

“Not completely but…I saw that picture down stairs and…and…I dont know I feel its true. I’m your mom aren’t I” He held her crushingly tight “mom” his voice broke a little “Even without you knowing its been so good having you back. Life just hans’t been the same without you. You need to see dad.”

“I do” she was bawling and wished she wasn’t. She had always been such an ugly crier and that was the last thing she wanted to be when she made it to his room. Her emotions were just so strong right now she couldn’t help it. He was crying too adn that wasn’t helping. She felt this was her son and no loving mother wanted to see their son cry. He hugged her one more time “we’ll help you remember fully mom and even if you cant…I’m just so happy you know. We can make new memories” she nodded and he knocked on the door before leaving her.

Aurelia hastily wiped at her face, praying that she didn’t look horrible. He opened the door with confusion and concern on his face “whats happened? Why are you crying” Looking into his eyes she didn’t know what words to use so she grabbed his shirt, pulling him down to kiss her.

Rees was surprised by the sudden press of her lips and it took him a moment for his brain to register what was happening. He grabbed her shoulders and gently pushed her back. “Aurelia, what are you doing?” He wanted to keep kissing her, to pull her into him and into his bed.

Aurelia held his face in her hands, tears springing back into her eyes. “I know everything, I know why I’m here.”

His heart stuttered. “What…what are you saying?”

“I’m Amelia, I’m your wife.”

Rees swallowed, feeling a knot forming in his throat. “You remember.”

She shook her head. “I saw a picture of her and I know it’s me, I know I’m your wife, I can feel it, I’ve always felt it, I just didn’t know until I was pushed to leave.” She pulled him back down, giving him another kiss. “I’m your wife.”

His tears spilled over and he pulled her tightly against him. “Aurelia, I’ve missed you, you have no idea how much I’ve missed you.”

“Just the way you three talk about me…I can tell. I can’t believe how lucky I am, to not only have had you three before but that I was brought back in this life.”

“I know, I could have never met you again. I wish I could thank who sent you my way”

“You can, I saw one of the beings that told me to follow my heart tonight.” she went through every detail up until this moment “so I think he and Humble are coming back”

“Good…” he pulled her into his room and shut the door “even though you don’t have your memories…you’ll lay with me right?” she smiled as she wiped her face. Aurelia thought it was an adorable question given she had just kissed him “yeah, Id like to cuddle with you tonight” he made almost a squeaking sound due to how emotional and eager he was to keep her close. The sound and how he held her once they were laying down touched her heart again “you three are going to keep me crying constantly, in a good way” she whispered. He kissed her forehead “as long as they are good tears Aurelia…I. my heart has ached constantly for you. So has the childrens but they’ve always handled it better than me”

“well I’m here now and I wont leave you guys again” He held her a little tighter “It may be too much to ask but please, let at least one of us always be with you”

“Pretoria told me how I died…I think that need from you is understandable” he felt a little shame at the thought she might know just how insane he became for a few years. He had allowed himself to become a monster when he saw her body parts hanging from the trees and he wished he could go back and handle things more like she would have wanted him to. “did you make me that soup because it was my favorite?”

“I was trying to help you remember”

“It did stir something in me, as you heard from my story”

“is there anything you want me to tell you about Aurelia” his voice was so emotional “You can just hold me for tonight. It sounds like you need it” He gave her a long kiss to the head “thank you…I’ve missed this so much…even when I had someone else…it was never even near the same”

“can I know…if she ever lived here or anything?”

“No, she only stayed over once or twice a month for a night”

“Okay”

“I love you Aurelia”

“I love you too. She was my friend though right? Are you going to let me meet her”

“You’d want to?”

“she was my friend. I mean you two had a sort of relationship but I’m not upset at her or you. You were lonely and it sounds like she was too. I definitely don’t think if she came around you’d be doing anything with her on the side so I’d like to meet her at some point”

“Okay, but I want to be selfish with you for awhile. I’m sure the kids feel the same” she smiled “thats okay with me” The room fell silent besides a few sniffles here and there. Aurelia wasn’t sure when she fell asleep but she woke still in his arms the next morning. He had fallen asleep hard so she was able to get up without disturbing him. She wanted to see her daughter now, to embrace her as she had her son and husband. She wasn’t hard to find, it looked like she had been waiting in the hall for her to come out “Brynmor says…he”

“I know who I am, come here” Pretoria ran into her arms “Mom, its so good to have you home”

“It’s good to be home honey”

~ The End ~