Writer Notes: The long awaited update for AU. I know that S2BO and The Gang were updated before AU when it was AU’s turn. But that’s ok. It’s up now 😉 I wasn’t expecting WordPress to update the site or how author’s post though. That was a minor set back, which I’ll have to take time to relearn.
Warnings: flashback! multiple scenes (do I really have to put those in the warnings. Shouldn’t it be pretty standard with my work), pixelated blood, violence, language, magic!
“Thank you for bringing her to me.” Latimere said lowly. “I know the community has turned their backs on you for betraying La’Belle, but I understand why you did. If you need any help…”
“We won’t ask it from you.” Harry Coristor hissed. “You could have stepped in at any time to deal with her, but you chose the sideline. We had to do what we could to survive.”
“Harry,” Trudy sighed. “He’s offering us help.”
“I do believe he rejected helping us when we needed it.”
“You are right to be angry with me, Mr. Coristor.” Latimere answered. “I could have helped you. I could have dealt with Lizabeth. I chose not to.”
“Brother,” Lacarra gently rubbed his back in small circles. “You owe them no explanation.”
“The community is falling apart.” Harry said. “Are you going to stand by and watch that happen to?”
“I have lived for thousands of years, Mr. Coristor. I survived the dark ages and the collapse of the Last Empire. I do not fear this turn in the community.”
“If you will please,” Lacarra motioned to the door.
“The vampires are dying out there!” Harry shouted. “We have no direction, no true leaders. Masters are tearing each other down. We are losing true status in the preternatural community and the world.”
“Someone has to do something.” he continued. “If you won’t, I will. Harvey Dellawood made a reasonable reform. I won’t let his death go in vain. I plan to head the reform and change the vampire way.”
“Harvey Dellawood died because of this reform.” Lacarra snapped. “No master would give up their status and power over their lessers. No master would bow before a council.”
“Lacarra,” Latimere gently laid his hand on top of her shoulder. “Let him go ahead with this reform if that’s what he wants to do. But, you should know, Mr. Coristor, I will not support it. There will be many more like me. If you cannot gain our support, your ideology is doomed from the start.”
“I will reform the community. I will change the world.”
“To change is to first lose everything and rebuild.” Latimere looked to Trudy standing quietly. “I’ve always protected what is mine, lovely Trudy. If there is ever a time you wish to leave this foolish man, my doors are always opened to you.”
“Thank you.” she replied. “I will always think of you, Latimere, for this kindness. But I follow my husband. He would never hurt me or cause me harm. I trust him with everything, including my life.”
“What the hell did you do!” Harry Coristor shrieked.
“I…I had to…for you to understand, to see.” Honey Fairchild replied.
“What! This was no apart of the deal. You were supposed to help keep my family safe!”
“Mr. Coristor…” Latimere managed. “She’s dead. Trudy’s dead.”
Mr. Coristor skipped grief and went straight for angry. He aimed it at Honey. “I will tear you to pieces!”
Honey’s posture changed. The fear in her face melted away. What remained was dark and rigid. “You don’t love me.”
“What the fuck are you talking about?”
“I cannot be with someone who doesn’t love me.”
Latimere trembled. He could feel himself slipping away into a dark, long forgotten room in his head. He felt the beast caged inside rattle its chains. Let me out, it purred in his ear.
He could feel his hand reach for the cell door, but a squeal made his hand jerk away.
“Get away from me!”
“Oh, Ms. Fairchild,” Latimere called. “I think I have something of yours.”
“I’m swimming in the thought of draining him dry. Poor Seamus, how to free him? Let Vaiden down.”
She did, abruptly.
“Ow,” Vaiden moaned.
“Good, Ms. Fairchild,” Latimere smiled. “You can follow instructions well. Now let’s put it to the real test. I have in mind a simple resolve to our situation. If you care to hear it?”
“Let my son go, you monster!” Julianna shouted.
“Tisk, tisk, Ms. Fairchild. How should I reply? With mercy? Or complete, utter rage?”
Siren Coristor could feel the electricity crawl on her skin. She knew something was amiss.
“I’m leaving.” Siren said.
“But Lacarra told us to stay put.” Delania Zarren said. “She said this was the safest place for us to be!”
“Leave her be.” Elan Coristor returned. “There’s no stopping her any way.”
Dahlila couldn’t believe Julianna would have killed her own son to get to Latimere. The vampire threw him aside just quickly enough to put up his shields.
“I’m tiring of this duel, Julia.” Latimere grumbled. “You were supposed to challenge me. You were supposed to kill me, remember? You have always been a disappointment.”
“I will destroy you!” she growled.
A cool breeze caressed Latimere’s skin. It quickly distracted him.
“Oh, Gregoral,” he chuckled. “What is it you’re trying to do? Call upon that blessed necromancy of yours? You know you are not powerful enough to corral me.”
“Are you arrogant enough to think that?” Julianna laughed. “Necromancy is the ability to control the undead. What are you Latimere, but an undead bloodsucker!”
“Actually I’m natural born.” he rolled his eyes. “To be born is to be given life.”
“Then what are you?” Dahlila asked.
He ignored her. Gregory’s power grew louder in his head. He knew it was necromancy. He should have known it wasn’t Julianna that broke High Tower’s locks. Why? When one of the most eligible High Elves was at her disposal?
“Whatever you’re doing, Gregory, stop it!” Vaiden warned.
“Latimere, what…what can I do?” Dahlila asked.
After all her careful planning, killing Mystic Crane and stealing their power, it wasn’t enough. She wasn’t powerful enough.
But she knew how to get more power.
“I kill you and I gain your mother’s unstoppable blue fire!”
“Stay down, old man.” Vaiden said then looked over to the others.
Whatever he did, the power that surrounded Latimere surged into Dahlila. Zarah sprang to her feet. “Dahlila!”
Zarah grabbed Latimere’s arm and let go. “He’s alive, but that’s impossible. She stabbed him through the heart.”
“Stay still.” It took a matter of seconds and Coastal formed the seal spell.
“Usually I would give you the choice to surrender,” Tatiana began. “But you don’t deserve it. Everything coming to you know is for the evil you’ve committed and the pain you’ve put my family through.”
Tatiana had seen the spell performed before by Jen the Unfavorable. She knew it was the darkest of all magics, but it didn’t matter. Julianna had to die, but that would have been just a kindness. Tatiana was going to banish her soul, never to return.
“I’m so sorry, honey.” Harry Coristor sniffled. “I couldn’t protect her.”
“We were betrayed.” he replied. “Your mom…Oh Trudy, why…”
“I should have never made that deal with Fairchild. I thought if I helped them kill Latimere, it would solve everything…but…”
“This is all your fault!”
“You have to understand.” Harry squeaked. “I did what I thought was best for our family…I was wrong. I’m sorry.”
“Sorry? Sorry! My mother is dead” Power radiated around Siren. “You! This is all your fault. You must pay! You must…”
“It wasn’t supposed to be this way.” Elan sniffled.
“I know.” Delania sighed. “We’re supposed to be in college, planning our futures.”
“What future do I have now?” Elan asked. “I don’t have anything without Yolonda.”
“Get up! Get up!” Delania shrieked.
“The vine…it’s moving.”
“What is it doing to her!”