Okay Fans, So I may have painted my self into a corner with that last chapter. I think I found a creative way out of it, but you will be the judge. Add some comments so I know if you like where I am headed. ALSO, tell me what you think of my new character. He so cute, I want to put him in my pocket. Let me know if you do too!
Chapter 22 ~
Gideon paused for just a moment to wonder at the creature forming in front of him, the natural instinct freezing him to the ground. He drew a deep breath, gathering his courage to reach out to the man before him. He stepped forward wrapping his hand firm around Aidan's scaled neck, his other hand on his shoulder, "Brother, you need to think, calm yourself." He searched the glowing red eyes trying the find the man within the monster, "I know you're scared, this is our worst nightmare come true, but we can't go storming after her. That is exactly what he expects, we need to have a plan, we have to take advantage of it and come at him in a way he won't expect." He saw that his words had broken thru as the red began to fade twirling around the green which was fighting to come back. He felt the scales under his fingers soften; he continued his grip on the area until it was only skin beneath his hand.
Aidan brought his arm up to rest on Gideon's shoulder his head bowed in defeat, "I can't lose her Gideon, not now."
"And the one sure fired way for that to happen is for us to go about this without a plan. Think! He doesn't know you have any allies left he thinks you are alone. He won't be expecting me,"
"Or me," Uonaidh said appearing behind Gideon.
Aidan looked up at the group forming around him, the support giving him a new hope that he could save Lisbeth and the child he now knew she carried.
"You just try to reach her, see if she can tell us anything, we will work out the rest." Gideon said, leading Aidan back towards the house.
"So what did you find?" Constantine asked as the three returned to the great hall, the last of the party's participants had been herded away, grumbling that the night had ended so abruptly.
"Aeron," Gideon replied, the one word being the only thing needed for Constantine to understand exactly what the situation was.
"What about that noise, would someone explain to me how in the hell it's possible?" Constantine asked looking into each face, "Aidan?"
"I don't fucking know!" Aidan yelled back, "It should not have been possible. I mean even if she were turned, it shouldn't be possible, there have been no true born vampires for over a millennium."
"So what does that mean for Lisbeth, since she is only human?" Gideon asked, a sick fear feeling wrapping his stomach in knots at the realization that Aeron may not be the only threat to the woman he had just sworn to protect.
"Breadan, we are waiting!" Uonaidh said loudly into the room, a hint of impatience in her voice. Abruptly there was a loud clatter as items fell down in the hall closet. Gideon and Constantine sprung into action getting to the closet before the last of the items fell from their place on the shelf. Constantine held a finger up to Gideon silently counting, he gave the signal swinging it open, as Gideon stood posed ready for whatever stood behind the door. It was not until he heard Constantine's sudden laughter that he allowed his shoulders to relax, following his friends gaze to find at the bottom of the closet, surrounded by the various items that had fallen over, a small thin man. The man froze in his attempts to gather various scrolls that had fallen from his arms, his eyes freezing at the men's feet. Despite the trying activities of the night, Gideon could not help the smile that began to form on his face as he crossed his arms and looked down on the mop of messy silver white curls, two small pointed ears peaking thru the top.
The small Faerie slowly lifted his head to look up into the smiling faces of the two men. A slow but deep flush of red grew across his silver highlighted cheeks. He slowly reached up to push his rounded glasses farther up onto the bridge of his thin nose, "Gentlemen, a hand please," he replied trying to gain some composure after such an embarrassing entrance.
Gideon reached out a hand to the clumsy faerie, his yank pulling the man easily from his position, a quiet yelp escaping his mouth, quickly followed by a clearing of his throat as he ran his hands down the front of his double breasted vest.
Constantine moved quickly stacking the various scrolls in his arms, "What are all these?" he asked the faerie.
"They are everything I could find on the mating habits of the Dragon Clan." The tweed clad fearie said as he stretched his hands towards the documents, a careful step towards the vampire who was now looking over the items with more effort and excitement.
"I will take those back now if you please," the man commented, looking carefully at Gideon trying to gauge if he was in danger. Constantine began to unroll one of scrolls when the white hair fair barked, "Don't touch that," a sudden spark of courage in his voice at the idea his precious papers may be mishandled, "They are quite priceless! Hand them over before you do something to ruin them!"
"You have nothing to worry about that with this one," Gideon patted the man on the shoulder, using his thumb to indicate he was talking about Constantine, "He loves those dusty old items more than you do, I imagine." Gideon picked the thin man up by the collar and began dragging him back into the great hall, "Connie, If we survive this whole thing you may have finally found someone with more old crap than you have!"
"Unhand me, you oaf!" the man cried out kicking his legs uselessly as he was carried back to the great hall, "I am the personal librarian to the Faerie Queen, and she will not take lightly to mishandling me or her papers!"
"Breandan, simmer down my dear, these are friends of mine," Uonaidh said when she saw and heard her subject, "Gideon, put him down please."
Gideon set the man down, giving him a good natured pat on the back, winking at him as he turned. Breandan looked around assessing the situation, his gaze setteling on Aidan before he mindlessly pushed his glasses back in place on his nose.
Breandan crossed to Constantine who had only now entered the room, so lost in the ancient documents he held in his arms.
"Sir, if you please?" Breandan asked his arms stretched out carefully as if he were asking the man to return a newborn babe. Constantine reluctantly handed the documents to the librarian commenting, "Gideon is right, I do have a love for texts and ancient writings, I would not harm your items."
Breandan looked into the Vampires eyes and found respect shining back at him. "Thank you sir." He said humbly before returning to his Queen.
"So, what did you find," Aidan said his face knotted with worry.
"Well, there is quite a legend around your heritage my lord, I am surprised it is not spoken of more often. I guess the story had been lost over time. It is a miracle these scrolls survived the clan wars at all."
"Yes, yes. Now get on with it. Cut all the formalities and cut to the meat of it!" Gideon said sharply, growing impatient at all this meaningless talk.
Breandan pushed his glasses up and again, cleared his throat, before glancing over his shoulder at the Queen, seeking her permission to continue. Once he saw her slight nod, he began to speak, "Apparently, as the natural born vampires began to decline, and the dragon clan's numbers began to dwindle, the head of the clan, your father, Sir Aohdan, and his two remaining brothers, made an appeal to the Goddess Brigid and her two sisters. He agreed to protect their memories and shrines in exchange for a way to continue his bloodline.
The sister goddess's agreed and thru their intervention a set of perfect triplets were born to the Ruler's human servant. The three babes were raised under the watchful eye of the ruler; they soon grew into very beautiful women. The legend says that it was only when the three sisters entered the beginning of puberty that the ruling brothers were first given the gift of dreamwalking. Each brother was drawn to the girl who was meant to be his mate." He paused to let the story sink into the audience before him. He crossed to the table were he had laid out his various documents, unrolling one of the oldest. He handed the item to Aidan. Aidan's hands trembled as he reached out to run a finger along the painted item on the fragile paper. In the drawing where three girls, the representation clearly showing them to have the flaming red hair he had come to love from the moment he say it.
"Continue please, Breandan." The Queen ordered.
"Well, it is said the women grew to be some of the most beautiful in the land. Their unusual red hair was legend, a mark that they were created in part by the fire diety, created especially to carry a child of the dragon clan."
"But what happened to them?" Gideon asked, "I mean if their line survived then why did it take so long for Aidan to free himself?"
"My documents state, that each sister produced a male heir, and before they could conceive a second child, the great territory wars had begun. By the time the wars were over the women had been killed and Aohdan was the only one left of his cousins."
"So they didn't die in childbirth? Their bodies survived?" Gideon asked, relief evident in his tone.
"No, they were actually married to each of the brothers. Remember, Brigid was a Goddess of of midwife's and protector of women. It is said that once the child was conceived the women's body would begin to change in order to accommodate the child. Apparently Brigid made the women especially, something in their blood once mixed with the child's would create a strong magical seal. Once the seal begins, the human female's body would begin to change, allowing her to carry the child safely."
"What kind of changes?" Aidan asked remembering how tired Lisbeth felt tonight and distant he had felt from her in the last few months. He thought is strange that he did not sense her presence tonight until she was almost in the building.
"Well at first a lot of her energy will be depleted as her body begins to change, soon the core temperature will slowly rise. As the child gets closer to it's birth, the bond between mother and child will grow, over riding the father's mental bond with her. This allows for the fetus to fully synchronize it's animal instincts syncing with the mother's, one of several protective traits. Human's aren't made to sense danger as well as the offspring of the dragon clan. This merging is just another step in completing the seal. Another one of Brigid's plans to allow nature to protect itself." The man paused for a moment searching again thru his ancient papers before finding what he was looking for, "According to these accounts, the father of the child must feed the mother from his vein. This feeding is the final step to preparing the mother's body for the birth. It will not only give her the strength to protect the child she is carrying but also allow her body the ability to heal after the birth. The child will die without the mother to feed it. This is why your cousins did not survive. Their mothers had been killed early on in the wars, only your mother was able to escape until you were old enough to care for yourself," Breandan explained, looking at the man with a mixture of admiration and sadness.
"You're holding something back, what is it?" Aidan asked, bracing himself for what he knew was coming next.
Breandan straightend his shoulders, looking down at his long fingers as he knotted them in nervous rings; he looked to his Queen as if asking for courage or permission.
"It's all right Breandan, tell him everything."
"Yes, your Majesty," The small man said before taking a deep inhale and quietly addressing Aidan, "Unfortunately this feeding will complete the seal. The mixing of her blood with the child and father will finalize her own transformation in becoming apart of the Dragon Clan. Her days of being human will be over."
"Fuck this! You have to be joking me!" Gideon stormed. All this information was simply too much for him to handle in one sitting. He paced back and forth in front of Aidan who seemed to be way to calm and collected. "I still don't understand, if all these women were killed during the wars, then it's possible Lisbeth is not one of them, this could all be a big mistake? Maybe Aeron has known about her all along and is playing some kind of sick joke on us!"
"No, it's true, it's all true." Aidan replied dully, the shock of all the information slowly breaking thru his denial of what was happening. He pointed to the scroll with the drawing, the faded depiction of the three identical women a perfect match to Lisbeth's appearance. Tell him Uonaidh."
"The spell I cast could only be broken by the one meant for him. Part of the property I protected contained one of the original shrines to Brigid and her sisters, thus keeping Aohdan's father's promise, she must have found a way to keep hers as well."
Constantine was the first to break the silence in the room, "Can
he feed her in a dreamwalk? Will that work to complete the
"Why in the hell would I want to do that!" Aidan fumed.
"Think about it Aidan, if she completes the seal, she has a better chance of protecting herself against Aeron. Nothing is stronger in this world than a mother's instinct to protect her child, am I wrong your Majesty?" Constantine asked the silver haired faerie.
"He is right, Aohdan, it will be your best option to save her, if you could get to her." Uonaidh looked away from her friend, "Breandan, is there anything to answer the question?"
"No Ma'am, but I would assume the answer is no. She must feed physically from the vein, but, I am confident to feed in a dreamwalk will give her enough strength to keep her alive for at least a day or two."
"Aidan, you have to do this," Gideon said talking his face into his hand, a brotherly touch, "I don't like it either but what choice do we have? If you don't do this you will lose them both."
"I know, Goddamn it! I know!"
Aidan paced back and forth in the great room, he had been trying for over an hour to reach Lisbeth's mind. But all he continued to find was emptiness. Since he first found her not a day had gone by that he was not able to reach out and touch her with his mind, this emptiness created an ache so deep it began to be all he could think about. He couldn't tear his mind of the idea of his life, a life without her in it.
He paused, shaking his head trying to focus, to concentrate once again on reaching her.
"Aohdan, be calm, concentrate and try to reach out to her. Please, let me help you." Uonaidh whispered into his ear. He nodded in defeat, he heard her begin to chant ash she raised her hands to his face, sending a current of warmth into his skin, his muscles relaxing slightly as her magic worked thru his system. Aidan closed his eyes, finally feeling a brush of his Lisbeth.
He sought the sensation out, running after it, finally grasping it and pushing himself into her mind. He knew he had her but was frightened that he she still felt so distant, hidden some where in this abyss.
"Lisbeth, can you hear me?" He cried out in the darkness, his call echoing softly.
"Aidan?" her voice carried back to him so weak he could barley make it out.
"Lisbeth, concentrate my love, come to the sound of my voice, fight for me." He called out, turning frantically trying to see if he had broken thru to her. A very faint light moved out of the corner of his eye, he spun around trying to find it, "That's it little one, keep it up, come on you can do it." The light returned but held steady, the small circular orb growing in size just enough for him to begin to make out a room on the other side.
Just when he started to feel relief, the orb began shrinking again prompting him to call out, "Noooo, Lisbeth, don't stop, please baby, try, just try!"
His panic must have woken something in her because the orb expanded in less than a second, flooding his sight with what must be the room she was being held in. He spun around looking for her, finding her lying on a large bed, her wrists bound by long tight chains, securing her to the bed's frame. He ran to her side, reaching out to her, frustrated that his link with her was too fragile. He needed to finish what he came for before it was too late. He would not have the strength to release her from the chains, guide her safely from the room. It tore him to pieces.
"It hurts Aidan, everything hurts so much" she cried out to him, "Help me, please!" fresh tears flowing from her face, mixing in with the dried blood on her neck.
"I know Lisbeth, I am sorry, I am coming for you. You have to hold on for me, don't give up on me."
"I'm so tired, I just need to sleep a little longer," she whispered her head rolling back in his arms; the edges of the room becoming dark.
"NO! Lisbeth you stay with me, fight for me." He cried out, slapping her face, her eyes springing open. He lifted his arm, tearing the skin at his wrist with his fangs, putting it to her lips, "Drink! Take it!" He yelled, increasing the grip on the back of her head and neck to keep her from shaking her head back and forth. Her eyes squeezed against him, fighting him out of instinct.
He was flooded with relief when her head stopped moving and her mouth grew tighter against his open vein, sucking on him greedily. Her eyes flew open and he drew an involuntary breath as he watched a thin line of glowing red encircle the clear blue her eyes. His child within her taking the nourishment, he found in that moment more than panic and fear for her life, he found his anger again, his courage to fight for what was his, to defend his the woman he loved and his unborn child.
He reached out and stroked her hair. "I am coming for you, I will not lose you, but you have to fight for me, don't give up on me, Lisbeth. Do you hear me."
"Yes," she breathed as he pulled his arm from her mouth, wiping the excess from her face, before lowering his head and kissing her, perhaps the last kiss he would ever lay on her lips.
"Dawn is coming soon, rest for now. Try to pay attention to what is around you, try to give me as much information as you can. Aeron doesn't know I can dreamwalk, he won't know you are able to tell me things, use that to our advantage. Can you do that for me? Lisbeth." He could see the exhaustion seeping back into her face, his blood would give her strength but it needed time to work it's way thru her. "Lisbeth, do you understand? Answer me and then you can sleep, Lisbeth!"
"I understand," she whispered, the room growing dark around him again, "I love you Aidan."
"I love you more Lisbeth," he said trying to kiss her one last time before the abyss swallowed him again.