Freya jerked awake when she felt that Edmond’s side of the bed was empty. She sat up, looking around the room, worried when she didn’t find him there. She stood up, taking the blanket with her. She went downstairs, stepping lightly all the way to the bottom step. The lights were on in the kitchen so she went inside, seeing Edmond sitting at the table, his hands clasped together and pressed to his lips. “Edmond?”
His eyes jumped to her face, softening. “Is everything okay love?”
“You were gone.” She crossed the room and he pushed his chair back so she could sit in his lap. “What’s wrong baby?” She could see there was something wrong, his eyes held a hint of worry.
He sighed. “I think something has happened to my brother.”
“What do you mean?”
He tightened his arms around her waist. “I had the worst feeling, it woke me like an electrical shock. Something terrible has happened.”
She stroked her fingers through his hair. “What do you want to do?”
“I have to find him, I know he’s a monster, but he’s my brother.”
“We don’t even know where he is.”
“We have to try, I need to know what happened.”
She kissed his forehead. “Alright my love, we’ll leave in the morning. Come back to bed.”
“You’re so amazing, you really are…he may be my brother so its easier to love him but you had no relation and are still willing to go see if hes okay with me after he tried to kill our daughters, torture and kill you and all the maiming, torture, rape and terror he’s rained all over the worlds. Most women would think me insane for caring at all”
“You were smart enough to keep him from our family but you can’t keep your heart from loving him, no matter how big a monster. I forgave him for you. If he would have actually killed one of our girls it wouldn’t have been so easy but they lived and so did I after he kidnapped me. I do feel for all the lives he’s tormented but I know you do too”
“I’m sorry he ever hurt you girls because of me…I honestly shouldn’t have turned a blind eye for so long but…I was a much different man before you” Freya kissed him “come to bed so we can be rested for tomorrow.” she wanted to say hopefully he was wrong but deep down, though she wanted to help her husband, so many lives would be spared, so many terrors avoided with one less immortal monster causing suffering everywhere he traveled.
The next morning when Freya woke, she could tell Edmond had got little to no sleep. He sighed as he dressed and she hugged him, wanting to bring him some comfort. “I’m alright baby.” He said and kissed the top of her head.
“I love you Edmond.”
“I love you too, very much.”
Once they were dressed Edmond went downstairs to make them some oatmeal while Freya packed a bag. She headed downstairs once she had everything from their room and bathroom and grabbed a couple of bottles of blood. Edmond sat their bowls on the kitchen table and they ate quickly, wanting to get going as soon as they could. “Do you have a sense of where he might be?” Freya asked as she rinsed out their bowls.
“I think our best bet is to start in Chthon’s world. If we haven’t heard of him being there then we can ask Chthon and his family for help.”
“Alright sweetie, just remember to watch your step.”
He actually smiled which made her happy. “Don’t worry, I don’t plan on getting bit again.”
Freya dried her hands then kissed her husband “lets get going” As they locked up their home Freya asked “are we going to tell any of the children where we are going? I mean, Jovani is never home and probably isn’t now since he travels with his mate but I’m sure Jayna, Alvaro & Desa would appreciate us letting them know since we mighht be gone for awhile.”
“true, I don’t mind quickly popping in on them all. Lets call to be sure they are home though” They walked back in to get their cellphones since they had left them. There wasn’t any point in having them on hand when they went to different worlds, especially Chthons. Jayna didn’t answer but her other two siblings did and let their parents know they would be home so Freya and Edmond hung up, left their phones on the counter then locked up again. Alvaro was nearest so they told him bye first then headed over to Desa’s. Desa thought her dad seemed a little uncomfortable since she knew where they were going so she hugged him “daddy, I understand. I’m not upset you still care about him. I’d probably still love my siblings even if they were vicious monsters”
He kissed the top of her head “I love you very much sweetheart”
“I love you too.” when Desa hugged her mother she said “If he ends up still being alive mom please get out of there as soon as possible. I can’t lose you”
“You father will be there”
“yeah but you know he constantly has lackeys. I know you and dad are strong but…he’s Gossamer, please just get out there if he comes into view atall. Dad can still see him”
“Okay baby” Freya kissed her daughters cheek then left with Edmond.
Edmond sighed as they walked, feeling down as they made their way to the park where a gate that connected their world and Chthon’s was hidden. Freya grabbed his hand, her fingers sliding through his, lending him her warmth and support. “You okay?” She asked and he shook his head.
“I always wanted peace for my brother, I wanted him to find someone to love as much as I love you, but there was always this darkness in him. Before I met you, he and I thought we could do as we pleased, I never did half the sick things he did, but I didn’t stop him either. When you and I first got together, I was a dominating asshole who bossed you around and used you for sex. You had no choice but to stick around because you had not yet mastered your abilities.”
“It’s the truth Freya. I was worthless. You have no idea what knowing you has done do you? You saved me Freya, you saved me from becoming another Gossamer.” He sighed. “I just wish he had known someone like you, someone who would love him, but put him in his place when it was needed, someone to show him and firm but loving hand. I wanted to save him.”
“You can’t help someone who doesn’t want it.”
“I had every chance to stop him, but every time I stopped myself short of killing him.”
“He’s your brother Edmond and it’s hard. He feeds off of mayhem like it’s a drug.”
“And now something bad has happened to him.”
“You don’t know that for certain.”
“I do” Freya sighed “maybe you should try to get closer to your other siblings”
“he’s the only one I ever kept in contact with at all. They are basically strangers to me. As most vampire families it wasn’t loving, cuddly rainbows. Our childhoods were miserable and we all went our separate ways pretty much. Our parents never instilled the value of family so we never really bonded with eachother. Half our childhood was spent being made to fight one another”
“I’m sorry Edmond” he sighed “you have nothing to be sorry for.”
“I just hate you grew up like that. I’m glad you could change”
“and I’m lucky as hell you would come back to me and risk being walked all over again”
“I could tell you were really sorry.”
“you can forgive people without getting back together with them, even if you love them. I have never stopped being grateful you’d return after all those years of misery for you, that you could love somebody who would treat you like that. I guess it shouldn’t shock me now that you’d be willing to help me find my brother. After all he didn’t hurt you half as much as I have”
“shh, stop it Edmond” she said softly and he lifted her into a hug.
“I will never forgive myself for the pain I have caused you, for the heartache. I’m sorry Freya.”
“Hush love, you don’t have to apologize anymore, I love you and I do not regret coming back to you.”
He squeezed her tightly, buried his face in her hair as he fought to keep himself from crying. “God how I love you Freya, everything about you is so perfect.”
She gave a soft laugh. “I know, don’t forget it.”
“I won’t.” He lowered her to her feet and kissed her forehead. “Let’s find my brother and once we’re back home I’ll get a hold of my little sisters and brother. Hopefully they have found more in life than blood and death.”
Once they were at the park they found the portal to Chthon’s world and opened it, stepping quickly through and closing it behind them. The world was just as wild as ever and just as beautiful. Normally they would be enjoying this place, but today they were on a mission, one that clouded their world with worry and uncertainty. Freya kept her hold on Edmond’s hand and would glance at him from time to time to see how he was doing. She wished she could make things easier for him, wished he and his siblings had been raised with the same love and care as herself.
“Stop looking so troubled Freya, I’ll be fine.” He suddenly said when they stepped out of the woods and onto a road.
“I just hate seeing you like this.”
“I know, having you here makes it easier you know. I don’t think I could come here and do this on my own. You keep me sane.”
“I’ll always be here for you Edmond” They made it to Chthons without incident and knocked loudly on his door. It was Galfin who answered “yes?”
“Oh hey, who are you?”
“Galfin, just a friend of Ruth and Chthons. Please come in and I’ll figure out where they are” Freya and Edmond stepped in then introduced themselves “Oh, I’ve heard about yoou guys. Nice to finally meet you”
“so how did they stumble upon you? There is always a story” Freya asked and he rubbed the back of his neck. Chthon was sort of like my dad growing up but when Ruth died he was just drunk and miserable most the time and I fell into a bad life. About the only moral I had was not raping women. Chthon had sunk that lesson pretty deep into me. I was doing somthing horrible again and they took me in and gave me the opportunity to be better. I kind of owe them. I was angry but had no right to hurt others”
“It is ironic how people like you and I who have had dark pasts can be forgiven and given a second chance, yet my own brother who was given multiple refused to see the light.” Freya detected a hint of bitterness in his voice and gave his hand a reassuring squeeze. “Sorry love, I’m just upset over his choices.”
“It’s okay.” She turned back to Galfin. “We think his brother may have met with trouble and we’ve come here to ask for Chthon’s help in finding him.”
“Oh, I see.”
“And you’ll have my help of course.” Chthon said as he walked down the stairs.
“How did you know?” Galfin asked.
“I know many things.” He then laughed. “I was coming down the hall and heard you all talking.” He turned to Freya and Edmond, shaking the hand of the latter and hugging the former. “It’s good to see you two again.”
“You too.” Edmond replied, doing his best to smile.
“Is there somewhere we can talk?” Freya asked. “You’re welcome to join us Galfin, I don’t want you to think we’re trying to get away from you.”
“Oh it’s fine, your business with Chthon is your business. If he needs to tell me something then he will.”
When they sat down Chthons face grew a little more grim, obviously knowing somthing already that he didn’t want to have to tell them. He finally sighed and said “I regret to be the one to tell you he is dead. It was actually a friend of the families that did it. He had taken over another world and was spening his days raping and torturing every woman he could find. He was letting his lackeys spend their days doing the same. While Thorn doesn’t have a great past himself he was turning his mates Glorias world into a place worse than hell itself, especially for the women. He had made a pit where he was just throwing the disfigured bodies when his men were done with them. In the end the only way to save Glorias world was to finally put his tyranny to an end. I swear he was really left with no other choice. I read Thorns and Glorias memories if you want to see everything they saw. I can project it into your mind”
Edmond held up his hand. “What you say is not surprising. He has always been a monster.” He swallowed the lump in his throat, hating he felt so heartbroken. “I think I need some fresh air.” He got to his feet and left the room, his face a mask of pain and anger.
“We’ll be right back, thank you for telling us.” Freya got to her feet and ran after him. She grabbed his hand and he turned, wrapping his arms around her and resting his forehead on her shoulder. She could feel his tears soaking through her shirt and she stroked her fingers through his hair, trying to comfort him. “Oh Edmond, I’m sorry.”
“He could have been better, I could have saved him, I failed Freya.” His voice cracked with emotion and she hugged him to her a little tighter.
“It wasn’t your fault baby. He chose to be evil, he chose to kill all those people, to rape those women, you didn’t make him.”
Sobs racked his body and she wished she could ease his pain. “I…I have to retrieve what is left of him, I have to bury him. Even though he was evil, he deserves to be buried.”
“Okay, if that’s what you need, but let’s rest here for today and leave in the morning, I’m sure Chthon won’t mind.”
“Okay” Freya sighed “baby, you really couldn’t have saved him. Some people just can’t be saved. He got chance after chance. The whole reason you tried so many years to make sure he never met me was because you knew just how evil and demented he was. Please don’t torture yourself. To do the things he did takes a truly black heart my love, one that cant be changed” He held her silently awhile longer then carried her outside the castle to breath for a bit. When he was strong enough to talk to Chthon they met with him again “I need to bury my brother if any of his body is left in that world. I wont be shocked if they burned it or somthing but if I can I want to find his body and bury him”
“we’ll leave as soon as you’re ready and you are more than welcome to stay in my home. Let me ask a maid which one we can give you” Chthon got up and they followed him to a woman who guided them down a few halls to where they could stay “this one was recently cleaned, sheets changed and everything”
“thank you” Freya answered
Edmond sat down on the bed, still looking extremely sad and Freya plopped down next him and rubbed his back. “He wasn’t always a bastard.”
“Our father was a violent man, he believed in complete obedience. I remember when he took me out on my first kill. I was seven, Gossamer was thirteen at the time. I refused to kill anyone so my father took me home and started beating me. Gossamer saw and stopped him, telling him to leave me alone and beat him instead because younger brothers looked up to their older brothers so any failing of mine was his fault. It was the first time he stuck up for me and the last time I rebelled against my father.”
“He loved you.”
“If that were true he would have changed and he wouldn’t have attacked you or the girls.”
“I think he loved you, he just loved himself more.”
“His heart just became ice. He loved me when we were kids and maybe remnants of that were in there but his heart was gone. It left him before we even left that house. You couldn’t do the things he was doing and have a heart. Knowing Gossamer he was disfiguring those women while raping them to hear them scream louder in pain. He hurt anything and everything as horribly as he could. I just wish we had run away or somthing before he became so evil.”
“you were little boys Edmond. Stop kicking yourself over things you can’t help”
“It’s just hard baby. Thank you again for caring so much even after everything..for being here at all” Words weren’t going to comfort him so she got up, locked the door then crossed back over to her husband. She began licking his neck and running her fangs over his skin just how he liked “Freya” he said, never once refusing sex and now would be no different. Even feeling guilt over how horribly he treated her when they were together the first time didn’t stop his length from instantly hardening. There had never been and would never be any reason he couldn’t have sex with Freya.
He pulled her pants off and lifted her, her legs going around his waist as he pressed her against the wall. She clung to him, her lips moving hungrily against his as he pulled himself free from his jeans and slammed into her. Her head flew back, her loud cry mingling with his moan of pleasure. “Harder.” She demanded and he moved her to the top of the chest of drawers, thrusting wildly into her. He tore her shirt open, his mouth dropping to her breasts, sucking greedily at her already hard nipples so she tangled her fingers in his hair. His tongue licked over the soft pale mound and he sank his fangs in, moaning as her blood washed over his tongue.
“I love you Edmond, I love you so much.” Her back arched off the chest of drawers and she nearly screamed at the orgasm that rocked her body. His lips found hers and lifted her up as he burst inside her, holding her tightly to him as he released.
“I love you Freya, never forget that. You’re so precious to me.” He stroked her cheek and kissed her again.
“Same her my sweet, wild man.”
He hugged her then pulled back. “Shower?”
“Sounds good baby.”
He carried her to the bathroom, feeling some of the weight of his depression lift though there was still some clinging like a fog he couldn’t escape from. When the water was the correct temperature he set his wife in then joined her, almost immediately pulling her back up against him. Edmond kissed her shoulder “that helped a lot”
“I know, I cant recall a time it hasn’t”
“You are far too amazing.”
“Just think of that and all the other positives in our lives. We have amazing children and maybe we can connect with your other siblings”
“I hope so”
“I know so, as long as they haven’t become as lost as Gossamer I know we can” They washed eachother then Freya stepped out alone to give him time just to soak and attempt clearing his head. After drying Freya simply pulled on panties and a bra, figuring she might need to make love with him again to help him get through this.
Edmond got out a few minutes later, not wanting to keep Freya waiting or worry her. He quickly dried then tossed his towel aside. His heart skipped a beat when he saw her laying in bed in just her bra and panties. He was across the room and crawling up her in an instant, his lips making a burning path from her ankle all the way up to her neck. She giggled and he gave her a gentle, teasing bite on her shoulder.
“Tempting me is never funny.”
“But it is adorable how riled up you get.”
“I am not adorable.”
“Cute and sexy.”
“You’re the cute one.” He moved so he was laying on his side facing her and trailed his fingers slowly down the center of her body. Her skin became covered in goosebumps and she shivered. “See, what a cute reaction and I’m barely touching you.” His fingers moved to her inner thigh, tracing the edge of her panties so she let out a little moan. “I think I could torture you for hours over calling me cute.”
“What about adorable?”
“That just adds more time to your punishment.”
She gave him a loving smile. “Good thing we have an eternity.”
A soft smile crossed his face and he pulled his wife against him. The next morning after breakfast Ruth & Chthon took Freya and Edmond to the world where Gossamer had died. They went straight to the castle and requested an audience. “They are already seeing someone but I can take you somewhere you can wait for a turn.”
“thank you” they were guided to a large room and instructed to sit so they did. It was hard to be patient but having his arms around Freya helped enough to get him to wait. “I have never seen such a white castle” Chthon said for conversations sake. “Yeah, almost everything here is pure white” Freya agreed. They wasted time talking about the castle until a young woman came to get them “you will be seen now” They all stood and followed her to the throne. Ruth, Chthon, Freya and Edmond bowed before them before Chthon spoke “thank you for seeing us”
“what could I possibly do for a man like you Chthon? If I have anything you need it’s granted to you”
“I know this might be rubbing salt in a wound to ask but this man here is my friend and regrettably the man who nearly wiped out everyone one in this world was his brother. We are here to see what you did with the remains?” Edmond would have been able to see how angry the king and queen were even if he wasn’t a vampire “he is the brother of that….that…and he comes here.”
“I brought him, I’m sorry.” the king seemed to be collecting himself so he wouldnt explode in fury “his corpse is in an enchanted box buried a little ways out of town. We didn’t want such evil to be reincarnated or reanimated or anything of the sort so we made sure his soul couldn’t escape. I will have someone take you and as much as I respect you Chthon this man and his mate are not welcome in my world again. If they want remains of such…..If they can look past such horrendous acts I dont want to risk my people around them. I know you have forgiven a lot of people Chthon but this man didnt just rape, kill and torture a litte bit. I could have never fathomed such evil before him.”
“I can understand you’re feelings sir. I’m sure after this they wont return” They quickly left as soon as they had a guide. Silence hung between everyone up until they reached the guarded box “The king and queen are releasing the remains to Gossamers brother”
“why! What if they bring him back! His soul will be free!”
“You know as well as I the king is probably planning to block their bloodline from ever traveling here again so at the least we wont have to suffer again if they chose to reawaken such a beast”
“but what about the others he will destroy?”
“Do you really want to question or king and queen”
“Oh I will once they are gone” The guards moved out of the way and the man began chanting to remove the spells that bound the box from ever opening again. When he was done he said “there, it will open but it will only open when you’re outside of our world.”
Edmond lifted the box, understanding their rage at Gossamer being released to him. He just wished they could understand that no matter what, Gossamer was still his brother. His heart broke for these people that his own flesh and blood had wronged and he knew no matter how much he apologized they wouldn’t care and it would never be enough so he simply walked away, just wanting to get home. “Are you worried about him coming back?” Freya asked.
Edmond sighed. “Yes and no. I keep thinking, what if he is reborn to a good family and has time to fall in love before he remembers who he is, but what if he remembers before he gets a real chance at a good life? I want him to know what real love is, I want him to forget our abusive father, our neglectful mother, I want him to start over with a clean slate, but I don’t want him to hurt anyone.”
“Not all souls who lived violent lives grow up to be evil a second time. It just depends on their new environment.” Chthon chimed in. “If you like, I can find a way to put a tracker on his soul so the moment he is reborn I can send someone to watch over him.”
“You could really do that?” Edmond asked.
“I’m sure there is a spell somewhere in all of my books.”
“No problem, anything for a friend. I’d bring him back in this life but he has shown time and time again that there’s no saving him.”
“I know, will you let me know when he’s reborn…maybe when hes an adult again if he turns out good we can connect”
“Of course” They went to Chthons first, leaving the remains contained until he figured out how to track it. Chthon did what he needed to do then Edmond and Freya took the casket home to bury it in their own world. They gathered the children and grandchildren they could then gave Gossamer a proper ceremony. Even his daughters shed tears, feeling for their father and how heartbroken he was. They all hoped that next time Gossamer could be a better person and maybe then they could all be together as a family.
~ The End