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" He snarled tightening his grip around Lissa's neck. "I'm strigoi remember?" "But what's the point?" I asked taking an offensive stand, not really knowing how I could attack him and make him let go of Lissa before she got hurt. She would run away and I would probably end up killed but that was not even relevant. "Fun? Challenge? Revenge? Pleasure?" He shrugged still holding Lissa. "You pick… your guess is as good as mine." He said with his now usual humorless and cold laugh. "You don't want to do that" I said in a silly attempt to resurrect a tiny part of my Dimitri. "I told you…That moroi is no concern of mine anymore. Only you are." He said jaw locked. "Please…Please don't hurt her. I'll…I'll do anything." I added with defeat, raising my hands in surrender and letting go of my fighting stance. "No Rose don't." Lissa whimpered and Dimitri growled tightening his grip around her neck. "I have some questions before," he said repeating the exact words I used when he held me hostage. I looked at him without a word as an invitation to continue. "Would it have changed anything?" He asked cocking his head to the side. "Would what?" I asked confused. "If I told you that I loved you on that bridge…Would you have joined me?" He asked with such a neutral voice that it actually gave me a chill. "Would you have meant it?" I asked expectantly, my heart racing. That was the question that kept me awake, eating me up inside. "Does it matter?" He asked with his still cold voice. I sighed. I was almost convinced strigoi couldn't love anyways. "If you let her go… I'll join you." I said with my head held high. "Rose…" Sobbed Lissa. Dimitri looked at me for a minute and laughed. "You know what it doesn't matter anymore." He said seriously. "You staked me twice and I think you deserve a little punishment before I awaken you. You'll understand then, but I think your last minutes of pure agony will be punishment enough." "Why---" I started but he broke Lissa's neck. I screamed with all I had. The pain I felt was almost impossible to bear and that's when I jumped out of bed screaming and kicking with my hair stacked with sweat. It was just a nightmare I thought breathless. Just a terrible horrific nightmare. I added to myself getting off the bed in need of a shower.
I looked at the clock beside my bed and sighed, still two hours before breakfast and I didn't deal with being alone that well these days. It gave me time to think and it was breaking my heart. Too many questions and so much incertitude. I was back four days now and it was my first night back to the dorms that was probably why I was shaken...I was just so confused about everything. Once under the shower I started to feel better, feeling the burning water on my back made me think of the contrast with Dimitri's icy cold hand, causing me to shiver. And I was asking myself the same question that I was asking since Dimitri hit the dark water. If I gave him the chance after that will he have said 'I love you too' and more importantly would he have meant it? I didn't realize that I was crying as the hot water was running down my face. Damn this experience was supposed to make me stronger, I thought I killed the love of my life. I say 'thought' because I failed…twice! But I was not stronger, a part of me was weaker…I realized that even the great Rose Hathaway had her weaknesses. I almost turned the blood whore of a strigoi… Hell I did turn into the blood whore of a strigoi!! And now that I realized he wasn't dead I could feel that weakness in me, that weakness I didn't know was there before. I dried quickly and dressed for training as I was supposed to meet Alberta to train in an hour now. I still couldn't believe that she decided to put the effort to help me graduate. Well I guessed Zmey senior was a part of it but still, she had been kind and sad for my loss I needed to ask her about that. Zmey…My father. I thought looking at myself in the mirror I recognized his eyes in mine, his skin tone, even his angry sarcastic smile was the same as mine. Now that I knew the truth it seemed almost impossible to ignore our genetic connection. I turned around and let my eyes roam to the desk where Dimitri's note was. I brushed the envelope with my fingertips which made my heart ache. I couldn't grieve anymore, I knew for sure he was still walking around…probably plotting my death but shamefully that was not what disturbed me the most. No what was disturbing me was that I maybe had a chance to save him. I knew it was total utopia and that even if I managed to get all the settings right (which was almost impossible) Robert Duros was probably totally insane by now if not dead and it could also very easily be a lie. So every part of my logical self said to drop it, to be prepared for when Dimitri comes for me and this time end it…by his death or mine. But there was this small part of me, this tiny but powerful part, that kept telling me that I had to keep hoping that there still was some hope. As small as it was, I knew deep down that this minor hint of hope could very well kill me. I sighed heavily, deciding to run laps before joining Alberta for training. That was at least a lesson given by Dimitri I didn't forget. When you didn't have any weapons to defend yourself what should you do? RUN!! and boy did it help me during my 5 weeks away. My legs were starting to hurt badly as I only started my third lap that was insane!! Only 6 weeks without training, a week as a blood whore, and some good ( already healed) beatings. I was almost back to the starting point. I felt like I did last September… incompetent. "Don't use all your strength Rose…You'll need it with me." Alberta shouted from the other side of the track where the gym was. I ran to meet her, I really didn't know what to expect of a training session with Alberta Petrov. "It's okay Guardian Petrov I need the exercise." I said dismissively.
She looked at me thoughtfully and I could see the sorrow deep in her eyes before she could hide it again. We walked into the gym and it was stupid of me not to expect the shooting pain that over powered me when I looked around. I hoped I was doing my best to hide the pain from my face but I didn't think I fooled her as she just stood there without talking letting me time to be myself again. You know how they say your life flashes in front of your eyes when you are about to die well it was exactly what happened here except that it was the moments with Dimitri that flashed before my eyes, every fight, every touch, every kiss, every laughter and except that I was not dying...not physically at least. My heart was aching in my chest like…Like I was having an heart attack. Who would have thought that a broken heart could literally hurt? After a little while, I took a deep breath stood straighter, concentrating on Alberta again. She was kind enough to ignore my reaction and talked like I didn't go in 'weirdo mode' for the past 5 minutes or so. "Well I think you should train with more than one guardian you know, adapt to more than one method." she said sitting down on a bench patting the spot beside her. "I bet you have so many volunteers" I said sitting. She had a small smile playing on her lips "Actually I did get two." She said shooting me a sidelong glance. "Really?" I asked honestly surprised. She nodded. "Guardian Alto and…" I was about to interrupt but the second name shut me down, "Guardian Hathaway." "Guardian… my mom? But what about her charge??" I asked completely dumbfounded. That was so not like my mother to stay behind. "Yeah she managed to get assigned here for a while and I think that they knew it was useless to argue with someone as stubborn as she is." She chuckled. "I guess you know where you got that from." I couldn't help but smile, my mother was a stubborn, controlling wiseass and my father was the same with a little addition of criminal… I never stood a chance… It was their fault if I was full of attitude and sarcasm, it was genetic. "You know what…Maybe it's better if we start everything tomorrow." She stood up. "I'll work out a schedule and give it to you tomorrow ok?" She said before awkwardly squeezing my shoulder. She turned around to leave but I couldn't help to ask. "How did you find out?" I blurted out. She turned around and knew exactly what I was talking about. She took a deep breath and thought for a little while. "I guess a part of me always knew," she said quietly. "I knew… Dimitri a long time…" She said and I could see she used his first name for my benefit only and it was very nice of her. "I met him once when he was still a student and I crossed paths with him during his years as a guardian and there were always walls around him, he always had his guard up and when he lost his charge." Alberta shook her head. "He seemed tortured deep down but once you two started training I could see some subtle changes in him he seemed less tortured, so much more at peace and even happy and you…Oh Rose…" She smiled sadly. "I could see it in your eyes." She took a deep breathe "Then…Then we
" I just looked at her not knowing what to say. sorrow.had the kidnapping and he was frantic. I walked slowly back to the commons. read it in Adrian's eyes and if the great Janine Hathaway decided to stay around it had to be the reason. I knew he was doing it on purpose to avoid Lissa and he was doing one hell of a job. and guilt radiating from her in huge waves." she simply said and I could feel the pain. "Rose I need you to help me. I was such a bad ass that I went in an infiltration mission as a spy for the secret service. I just bit my bottom lip looking at her trying my best to contain my tears. Like the previous days Christian was nowhere to be found. I did my best to swallow as fast as I could without chocking and took the opportunity to quickly glance around the room. I didn't realize how hungry I was before sitting down at the table. "What can I do for you?" I asked before inhaling almost half of the donut. I haven't run into him again. "I'll see you tomorrow. I barely reached my seat when she spoke. Some of the rumors were just crazy and some were funny. "It's alright. Others said I went rogue and left to hunt strigoi like Faith in Buffy the vampire slayer (not so wrong) and my personal favorite. I stayed there a little while longer looking around and trying to look good enough to join the others for breakfast as even if they tried to hide it they were worrying about me." I said once my mouth was empty. Who would have thought I would ever take Christian's defense? Not me! "Sending me to talk for . I really did feel better when I was with her. belonged to Dimitri. Lissa always knew I was a sucker for sweets and sugar in general." I chuckled. I could feel it from Lissa. "I know the situation is pretty messed up but he just needs some time…give it to him. "Sorry. Chapter 2 "Well good morning to you too sunshine!" I said reaching for a sugar coated donut that was on the table." She said and I could feel the worry irradiating from her." she said with a rueful smile. so much more than what a mentor should feel and part of me knew right then that he loved you so so much too." she added before exiting the gym. it was always easier to have your way with me when I was full of it. "Awww Lissa come on. "It's Christian. Now students were starting to move around I couldn't help but sigh to the not so discreet sidelong glances full of questions that they were giving me. I was not sure I could even speak. As soon as I made it to the table and saw Lissa smile I felt better it was like the part of my heart that belonged to her helped numb the part that used to. Some said that I just couldn't deal with the aftermath of the battle and needed to get institutionalized for a while. Lissa blushed slightly feeling embarrassed to have jumped on me like that. With the exception of the little chat we had the day I came back. and still. Well I'd rather them think I was a spy or a rogue slayer or even psychotic than what I really was…a failure to my one promise and a temporary blood whore. I was pretty sure he was coming to the commons very early or very late to avoid any of us." I said even surprising myself.
" I said confused.. He thought Adrian was a useless alcoholic. It was true that our little group were the only people Christian was talking to. Please Rose…. "Do you want me to walk you there?" I nodded grateful. I just needed a little more time. "Now as in the next few hours or now in the future since I came back?" I asked knowing that even if I was not going to give full details to Eddie. And I certainly didn't help with that. Even if Eddie changed after all the horror we faced he still had some of his carefree laugh and the faint glint in his eyes. My mother and him did their best to hide it to everyone maybe there was a reason." he said smiling." He said nicely. "Well he needs someone to talk to and even if he never said it out loud he…" she smiled. "Ok…. "I mean if I could help by beating him up or something I would but I don't think it would work. I had to admit it. well mobster boss." Well not that I don't want to know your plans for the future but I'd rather you talk to me on your own initiative. Classes went pretty well." I said since he invited me anyways. "No it's not that. also known as torture 101 for me." I said evasively. I decided to wait before telling her since I needed to figure the whole Victor plans before and because I was not sure if it was really my place to say. He is a good person and I knew how badly it hurts when you have nobody to confide in. . the guy can be pretty stubborn" I added before taking a sip of my coffee. I could at least give him a very small and vague resume of where I went. "Well Christian always had some trust issues. It was nice to be with him to do small talk." she said shaking her head. I did tell her almost everything else and she would know it all eventually. Calculus. It was the secrets that almost destroyed our friendship and ultimately almost cost her life. "Thank you Rose. I was the only one left and even if I would rather get stabbed than admit it out loud I wanted to help him. I looked at her for a little while in silence." he added and I could hear in his voice that he was as surprised as I was. it was like before…sort of. Eddie accepted me like I never left and he didn't try to question my absence because he knew only too well why I left. She knew I met a man. "So what are you going to do now?" Asked Eddie as we exited our last class of the day. He seemed to seriously ponder my question. he was not close to Eddie and he certainly couldn't talk to one of his 'students'." Oh my god I really sound like Abe right now don't I? I added to myself as that was still a part of the story Lissa didn't know about. However." she said biting her bottom lip trying her best not to cry. "I was more concerned about the next few hours. I nodded still thoughtful." she said and I could feel relief radiating from her. "He is actually doing a pretty decent job I can even imagine him as a teacher.help him get better. named Abe but at the time I related her the full adventure I didn't know Abe was my father." I chuckled. "He trusts you and he loves you.you won't help that's for sure. that almost made me think we were going back in time…before Spokane. "Well I wanted to go and see one of Fire boy training sessions. "I'll go meet him at his training session after class." She added going full force sad puppy on me. "Oh yeah that's good! I went twice myself to show them some movements you know.
"I've got your training schedule for the next two weeks here. "I see…" I said simply not really knowing how much they knew and what did they share with her." I simply added concentrating on Alberta again. "That's…That's what you wanted to tell me?" I asked honestly surprised as it could have been said in front of Eddie. But you can only be marked for 7 and I'm sorry about that.We were maybe half way to the junior gym when Alberta met with us." I said patting his arms. 5 strigoi in St Petersburg and 2 near Baia are attributed to you. "Yeah see you later. "Well Eddie was just walking me to one of Christian Ozera training sessions." Alberta commented while watching him retreat." . "Uh huh. "Thanks Eddie. I really didn't care who I was training with really…it was not my Dimitri. "They told me about your kills and I needed to talk to you about getting your Molnija. I had the irrational fear that she would announce that Dimitri was on his way. she had a folded piece of paper in her hand. I stopped to face her. I really didn't expect to get any marks." she said to me after acknowledging Eddie's presence with a nod. "It is a huge advantage but also a weakness. Alberta cleared her throat. At least what they know about your time there. "Well since you have been reintegrated the Alchemists did a report of your time in Russia.he saw it first hand." I said sincerely." She added and she was getting more uncomfortable by the second. I nodded not really knowing what I should say anyways. She looked at me startled but didn't comment. "Guardian Petrov." She said nicely quickly glancing around to be sure we were not spied on since the alchemists were more or less a well kept secret." I said watching Eddie too. "I really need to have a word with you. "Well yeah but still I think you deserve them however we can't give you a mark for every kill since some well… can't officially be attributed to you. "Oh I can walk you there!" She said jumping on the opportunity." I nodded. "I'll see you back in the dorm. "They added that semi-officially you probably took down around 15 strigoi. based on their official report. "He is going to be a good guardian. "Are you doing something important?" She asked but her voice was saying 'I need to talk to you alone'. "It's not necessary you know." I said as an invitation to continue. "So. "Thanks" I said putting it in my rear pocket. "Well that and something else too." she said handling me the piece of paper as we were walking side by side. "He knows what to expect outside…. hell I didn't even expect to make it back." said Eddie squeezing my hand." She said slightly frowning when she saw the relief on my face." I said resting my hand on Eddie's shoulder. "I was looking for you." Alberta said business like." I said smiling to him hoping it looked genuine enough. it was stupid as she had no way to know that but I just couldn't help it." She said with clear admiration in the voice." he said with clear respect before walking away.
never be over confident because that confidence." I added not really knowing what I felt thankful for. "So buddy how are you doing?" I asked with a small smile. she seemed clearly saddened by that. "Thank you. When he dismissed the group one of the young boys. "Stop right there Christian that's not why I'm here. I just came as an observer. "If you had only one piece of advice to give us what would it be?" He asked as the 8 students and even Christian looked at me eagerly." said Christian before concentrating on them again. I shook my head before entering the gym where Christian was talking to a little group of approximately 8 moroi. she sent you to try to set things right." I added winking to Christian and sitting down. "Well well well if it isn't the great Rose Hathaway!!" Christian said but he seemed genuinely pleased to see me there. So many pieces of advise were crossing my mind. pretty hard but clear and fair. They were clearly thinking he was just so brave to talk to badass Hathaway ( apparently it was the nickname they gave me behind my back). "No matter how ready. He looked at me and I could see his eyes widen as if he understood something. it was clearly enough to impress any guardians but deep down I never felt lesser of a guardian than I felt today."I said it's no biggy. The lesson was pretty good actually and I had to recognize that Eddie was right. I didn't need to scare the kids." I said before taking my hand from his mouth. "Excuse me can I ask you a question?" He asked directly to my attention. that pseudo strength could be your fatal weakness. "I'll see you later." I said pointing to the bench. "Did you came to share some of your moves with us?" I heard some muffled 'wow' and 'awesome'. "Maybe next time. I would have 9 Molnija and the big battle one before graduating. I chuckled. "You have grown so much Rose. "Well fine you'll see how we can kick ass too. "Ah I get it." I said trying to sound nonchalant but I could see that Christian understood only too well." she said but it was not clear in her voice if it was a compliment or not. Christian was a very good teacher. I thought for a little while. "Well not today. The others were looking at him in a awe." she said padding my arm before rushing away I guessed she was scheduled for security. "Well…" I ran my hands through my hair. ." I said simply. how strong you think you are. I thought he was maybe 12 and one of the fire users like Christian turned around to face me. As soon as the students left I stood up and went to meet Christian. "Yes that's fine by me. "Of course you can!" I said trying to smile as warmly as I could." I said trying to show some interest. I told you I don't --" I stopped him by bringing my hand on his mouth. "Ok I can arrange it for tomorrow after class then?" She asked before quickly looking at her watch. it's not the marks that make the quality of a guardian.
I hate them for voluntary going strigoi and I hated myself for years because I couldn't stop loving them." He said.. except for Dimitri. I was about to say something I didn't say anyone. His parents they were strigoi before being killed. "Why?" Asked Christian anxiously coming to kneel in front of me. "How have you been doing?" I asked resting a hand on his shoulder. Christian stared at me for a little while thoughtful and I could see no judgment in his eyes just understanding. not even to myself. You know it's evil that stands before you and you hate yourself for not hating him completely…you think you are bad because you love that strigoi to some level. "There are no reasons for you to be ashamed." He smiled "Don't tell me you didn't slip in Lissa's head while you were away. How could he understand? I thought a bit troubled. "It's terrible isn't it?" He asked nicely. I looked at him as my eyes filled up with tears. He nodded." 'Avery is not Rose' I remembered him saying. "Well I'd like to think we're friends and even if I would never say it out loud in public I missed you." And I really did. I know you enough to be sure you couldn't abandon her."Oh?" He said simply." he said picking up his bag from the floor. "Yeah I still love them. How it warmed my heart to realize he was on my side. "And I'll prove that I trust you. "I'm ashamed. We walked back to his room in silence and as soon as we walked in he gestured me to the armchair as he took off his jacket and sat on his bed. "What is?" I asked confused. "You've been so good at playing ninja and hiding that I didn't get a chance to even talk to you. his voice breaking." And it was true he was my favorite smartass. "So how have you been?" I asked again." I said barely louder than a whisper. Christian looked at me "I bet you know that already Rose. I wanted to say how can you know that? but I realized that he was the only one able to understand me." . You are so brave and strong! Don't think you failed anything or anyone because you didn't. I just smiled. I started to relay to him everything that happened during the last 5 weeks only leaving the same details aside than I left out for Lissa. "I guess trust is something that needs to be gained. "How can you…" I started to say." I said to him. "You still love them right?" I asked uncomfortable as even to Lissa he never openly mentioned his parents." He nodded slowly. "To realize that strigoi or not you still love him? It's hard isn't it? You start to hate yourself for that. "Let's go to my room. he was the only person I had ever trusted with my life. I couldn't even understand myself." He said in such a way I realized it was the first time he acknowledge that fact out loud.
I couldn't help but snort because it was also Christian's anti-social behavior that lead him to gain the 'strigoi-wannabe' nickname. if it's what she wants to do but you see I don't play their game. "yeah I do. "And I've seen. I was probably the only one who could understand that part of him and vice versa "You shouldn't feel bad Rose… after 10 years I still long for my parents Strigoi or not. and she only managed to control Lissa after making her drink. I'm proud of who I am as you are proud of who you are Rose. Things started to get messy even before Avery came into the picture." Christian then did something I wouldn't have expected in a million year. trying to keep his feeling in order." He said as he was just stating a fact. "I mean she let herself become influenced for whatever reason when she could have just confided in me. I just looked at him not saying anything. I don't blame her for trying to be part of the royal game. After a while we parted a bit embarrassed. Christian nodded. "When I was on the edge of the bridge ready to kill myself he…" I took a deep breathe as Christian squeezed my hands to encourage me. I chuckled drying my tears. "Sorry." I looked up. I've seen that you and…Belikov were ready to sacrifice ." he said still very calm.." I whispered looking down at his hands on my knees. what could I say when I knew he wasn't wrong.. "What do you mean?" he asked so caringly that I was scared to crush the friendship we were creating." He said and I could see the deep hurt in his eyes. "Rose you promised. maybe I would have joined him." I said blushing. When I asked him why he didn't want me to die he said because he wanted me but… I can't help to think that I might have decided differently if he had said that he loved me…Maybe. I never did. you comforted me too." he said simply. very close friends." He said sincerely. "What do you want me to explain?" He asked with a sigh of clear rendition. "See that's the problem. "The 'probably' and 'pretty much' clearly states that it was still a bit her."If he had given me the right answer I'm not sure I would be here today." "So you are fire boy." he said still in the hug. "You know I came to check on you and you comforted me. "Nah don't be. to see the disappointment in his eyes. "He begged me not to do it. "It's nice to know that someone can understand that part of you that you thought you had to keep hidden." He sighed. "It was nice to have just some you and me time. He sighed. So you are. he hugged me tightly and I hugged him back." "Believe me. "You know that Avery controlled Lissa's mind pretty much the whole time right?" I asked rhetorically. "Don't get me wrong.. "And I know you …at least I think I do and I'm sorry but I'm just trying to understand here ok?" I tried raising my hands in surrender." I added resting my elbows on my knees." I said sincerely. I knew that from now on we would be friends. "You know Lissa would never judge you right?" I tried." He said sitting back on the bed. "And you know that she probably kissed Aaron under influence. You are my favorite annoying smartass." He said calmly.
Before we make choices for the future that we can't take back. "I'm not sure I could make all the compromises that need to be made for her. "You too Rose. Can you understand that?" He asked and I could see he was actually yearning for my comprehension. I could still hear him clearly in my head like as if he was beside me 'Oh Rose you are young. Save me a seat.Life didn't spare us. I'll meet you there." he said giving me a quick hug. "Always stunning I see. I was walking back to my room still stunned I never thought Christian and I could become so close but all the battles we fought side by side. You left everything behind to find him but you see. Everyone thinks their first love is the only one they'll ever have. "Oh I finally found you. We have so much more in common than most people.. he was always so carefree. who is to say we are made for each other?" His last words wouldn't have hurt me more if he actually slapped me. "Eat breakfast with us tomorrow. just to make the other one happy. . "I wanted to give you that." He said handing be a black folder." he said before kissing my cheek as I exited. I was sure of that." he said with his usually laid back grin." he said quickly. even for myself to realize that. Please. "He said awkwardly. "Avoiding her won't help you decide you know. the campus. I liked his company." He said simply "I… it's--" I started taken aback.' "I just need some time to figure it out before it's too late and before we're only good to hurt each other. "Even if you decided not to get back together with Lissa. and now our shameful love for still 'living' or dead strigoi. Victor. We were friends for life now." he bit his bottom lip thinking. "What's this?" I asked curiously. "It's just…. I need you to know that you'll always have a friend in me okay?" I said standing up. His black eye had totally faded and he was as gorgeous as ever. he was like me. pretty much disabled when feelings were concerned." "I just need time to figure it out even if it will be hard. "But sometimes love is not enough and we're barely 18. "Hello Adrian." I said. Life…. because it would be a lie." He looked deep into my eyes before nodding. I was about to enter my dorm when I heard Adrian's voice behind me." I said actually happy to see him. I needed to go. "I'm not saying that I don't love her more than I thought I could love. curfew was getting closer and closer." I asked with the full force of my sad puppy eyes. You've barely lived. "You too. It made me think of Abe and what he said to me. I couldn't help to think that it was the forbidden love that I shared with Dimitri that made him fall and shattered my heart.sad. Spokane.everything to be together. "Sadly I do" I said in a breath. "You're right." He said and I saw the anguish in his eyes and it was now my turn to jump for my seat to hug him tight.
. I took a deep breath before continuing to read. I already know a lot about you. I could hear Abe in my head all over again. I had seen his goodness. He quickly kissed my forehead before rushing back toward the guest pavilion. I care a lot about you. Yeah right. (Come on you know it's true. I really hoped he gave up on me. 'I'm never going to be involved with anyone again. that I was sure of. When we were together. I let my guard down around you and you've already gotten a very good look at the real me. It was so right. and there is nothing you could do or say that would make me care or respect you any less. our little chat back in Baia. or in my dreams. I put on my PJs and quickly sank into bed. I think way better than anyone else. and a terrible reputation just as you like." I looked at him mouth wide open probably looking like a complete idiot.' I had said 'Oh Rose you are young. I looked at the folder stupidly.And you know me. he wanted to make me laugh and that was something I desperately needed these days. He was humoring me.' He replied I groaned.) . I bet that my blood whore days would crush this respect if he ever found out. For now I was still stuck. I know you think it's borderline stalkerish but I just think I'm being super cute. . That was a true fact. Everyone thinks their first love is the only one they'll ever have. . Why should you date me by Adrian 'Awesome' Ivashkov. Not after Dimitri.Not that you care but I'm a good catch. I'll never judge you or let you down . I knew I would have more success deciphering hieroglyphs than his messy handwriting.You already know that even if you want to do something completely crazy. his longing. he never gave up on me as much as I pushed him away. his bravery and protectiveness. his fear of losing me. good name. telling him to let go he kept coming back supporting me. . I could see through his pretenses. Dimitri was still half alive somewhere probably organizing my assassination but a promise was a promise. maybe now more than ever.All in all to. It was all very clearly typed on a computer which was good. "Just so you know I never worked as seriously or as hard on something in my whole life. "Shut up old man. =D I sighed closing my eyes."The essay you asked for about why I'm dating material." I whispered walking back to my room Chapter 3: I put the file on the night stand since it would probably be some pretty interesting bedtime reading. it's true but you… I've always been serious about you Rose and I know that you can't deny that. He was playing the dandy shallow rich royal most of the time but I knew better and he knew that I did. it did strike a sensitive cord. Adrian financed my crazy escape. Part One was called 'Facts' and divided in small paragraphs: . You've barely lived. I picked up the file chuckling as I saw the title. I could see his seriousness. "I'll see you tomorrow." He said seeing the matron approaching." he said seriously. I will always follow you.You also know that I'm not the kind to take things seriously.
showing that he did have a washboard stomach and he was barefoot. "So. just a small little date.) The second chart was on how compatible we were as far as sarcasm. Adrian chuckled and sat on the grass patting the spot beside him. a black tank top that was quite fitting. There was a pie chart on which part of me he liked the most. I sighed putting the file on the floor and turning off the light. The fourth.I can make a better case in person Rose. making his emerald eyes even greener in this magical surrounding. sensitivity. I promised him. strength.I also truly believe that with only a little amount of work we could create something worthy. healing. it could be good.. just one date no strings attached ok? . was on what we could offer to each other. The third chart was on how awesome we could be together.Moreover I'm just asking for a chance. Apparently he knew what to expect. He didn't need to be all dressed up to be gorgeous. (the biggest part which was 37 % was my brave. It's just a date. As soon as I drifted into sleep I knew it was not my dream and based on the one I was having these days I was rather grateful. I laughed out loud when I saw the little charts he made just below that. . He simply added. I took my shoes off and sat beside him in the deliciously warm grass. like I find the place where I need to be and I long for it each time you're away. as crazy as it sounds. I'll support you all the way whatever you decide to do or not do." I said taking a good look at him.If you decide to give me a chance I'll do my best to try to heal that part of you that I know you think is lost. (Love. he knew that it was possible I would not go in to deep with him. . It has to mean something. I can get a little impatient. and last. support.I would never judge you or let you down and you know that I will never play with your emotions or your heart. right? . . with the sun playing in his dark brown hair. humor etc…. he was even more beautiful than I had ever seen him. "What do you want me to say little Dhampir. comprehension. whole. Part two was 'Future & Conditional' . just one date. He was dressed so differently than his usual self. That was the scariest part. Adrian was a good man and I owed him that much at least I had to try. You couldn't wait for my answer?" I asked Adrian. fierce & protective attitude. Paper can't contain all the finer points of things. He was wearing a pair of faded blue jeans. It will be on campus and you'll be free to call it quits whenever you like.Now I did expose you to the theory but I need to show you how perfect I would be for you Rose and the way is that you accept one date." "So it seems. I said to myself deciding to agree with it. I could even say that dressed as simply.. fun etc…) The third part: Practice.. family. We were in a breathtaking garden with a beautiful little pond where some swans were wandering. very good but I could hurt him so badly…he could hurt me so badly.Plus when I'm near you I feel at peace. . not a promise.
So close that I could feel his body heat. not tomorrow but the evening after that. The training with Alberta was quite interesting with the experience she collected during the years she was able to show me some effective moves." he said but I could hear the underlying hurt in his voice. He shook his head. "I'll take you there one day. the St. . I didn't answer but it was painful because it reminded me so much of Dimitri's enthusiasm about Siberia. "Anyways. "It could honestly be heaven but I know it's not. never saw someone being so depressed to receive those badges of honor. He sat up and looked at me. Bartholomew church. "Do you like it?" He asked eagerly. "My grandmothers' garden in the Bavarian Alps." He leaned down to kiss my forehead. "So little dhampir was the presentation good enough?" He asked in all seriousness. "You can call it quits at any moment during the evening and go back to your dorm." I said not really knowing if I was making a mistake or not. "And where are we?" I asked.. The day went by rather quick and went pretty well. I'll come pick you up an hour after the end of your classes so be ready." I said evasively. "I couldn't disagree more. I bet that Lionel. "No strings attached right?" I added in order to stop him from hoping too much. letting the sun warm my face." he added with a wink." He added and I knew he was sincere. seeing him propped on one elbow looking down at me with what seemed pure joy on his face." "Why is that?" He asked lying down. "Do you agree to the practice part?" I stayed silent for a minute. "Yeah?" He asked and he seemed incredibly surprised that I was giving in. the fortress Marienberg… you'll love it. "Uh huh…" I said opening one eye. I went sullenly to get my 7 molnija marks. "You don't agree to anything by doing that you know. "Because they would never accept me there." I said with eyes closed. "That's beautiful." He said tenderly. "I really do. no hard feelings."Where are we?" I asked curiously because this was no place I'd seen before. I wanted to show you one of my favorite places on earth. this time I was the one laying down. one date. but Christian did his best to talk even with Lissa. I guess it was because he didn't know how unworthy I felt each time his needle touched my skin." He added before getting out of my head. Breakfast was a bit more awkward." He added with enthusiasm. By the end of it things were still weird but I could see that with time they could probably get cordial… maybe even become friends." he said laying beside me. the tattooist guardian." I said looking around once more. "Ok Ivashkov." he said like it was a certitude. one of my secret happy places. "See you tomorrow Rose. "You'll see there is no place like Bavaria. "Yep. You're very lucky. seeing flowers of colors and shape I have never seen before.
I got scared. "I love you mom!" I said and I heard her sharp intake of air. "You think that's why I stayed?" "Well…" I shrugged slightly. "I was thinking. I felt guilty to have brought her these souvenirs and hurting her in the process. I had never seen her that defenseless. "Ivashkov?" She asked truly surprised but not mad…that was odd. I probably hadn't told her that since I was about 6 or 7. and I decided. Because I never was so scared in my whole life. She sighed and opened her bedroom door. My quest created so much unnecessary worry. maybe if you don't have anything planned tonight. "Don't get me wrong it's nice to have you here but you didn't need to abandon your charge to keep an eye on me." She said sincerely." I blurted out wanting to slap myself. which of course was utterly idiotic. that I needed. friends. "Why don't you come to mine. We stayed silent for a little while and I said the first thing that crossed my mind to break the silence." I was such a terrible parent. she was probably surprised. that 'human'. I swore to myself if I could have you back safely I would try to spend as much time as possible with you." I added already surprised that she waited 5 days before starting to interrogate me. so scared. I nodded expecting her to explode any second. "I have a date with Adrian tomorrow." "I know that Rose." "That would be good. to do. "Oh Rose…I love you too. I hugged her. "Running away.. Then I realized it was better for her to know about it before hand so she wouldn't go full overprotective mom on me. I promised you I would graduate and that's exactly what I am going to do. I did the only thing I wanted. "I decided to stay because. I nodded. or. "You know… I usually never go back on my word. "Mom?" I said stopping in front of her." she said with an embarrassed laugh." She confessed." I looked at her with shock." She said hugging me tighter. "I guess it's time to answer your questions. leaving Lissa behind was so not like you. She seemed pretty confused by what I assumed she considered as a random comment." I said to her just before reaching the guardian living quarters. we can have some mother and daughter time." she said mainly to herself. "Hey! Sorry I just spaced for a minute.." I replied knowing I wouldn't be training with her before the week end. "Do you want to go back to my room?" I asked while we started to walk. ." She asked nicely probably not wanting to be disturbed by one of my fellow students and. "You…" she shook her head sadly.When he was done and applied the gauze on it I saw my mom waiting for me at the end of the room." I said stopping to face her. She was propped against the door frame and she seemed completely lost in her thoughts once more. "My word is all I have. it was not like it would be a first.
She twisted her mouth slightly. how much I was yearning for my mother. it can help you to move on. "It's about Abe and I isn't it?" She asked simply and I couldn't see if it was a good idea to continue or not. I narrowed my eyes slightly with suspicion that was just too weird I knew my mothers' opinion on Adrian and it was certainly not the 'not a bad guy' type. something I couldn't place." She patted my knee. "You are not too disappointed?" I asked giving her a sidelong glance. "You know what? We'll do that some other time." She sighed unexpectedly kissing my forehead." she said quickly to reassure me. He shouldn't have mentioned my feelings for Dimitri. but there was something in her eyes. "Sometimes you don't fall for the most suitable person. lost so much… I wanted you to keep that innocence just a bit longer. "Ah…That's some story." She gave me a small smile." she said shaking her head." We stayed quiet for a little while. if you started to deal with Dimitri's loss. it's not like you care what people think of you." I bit my bottom lip trying to contain my tears. "Can I ask you a question?" I asked uncomfortably. "that's when he asked me how you were doing. "What do you want to know?" She asked." She chuckled. The fear to lose me really changed her and I realized how much I missed her all these years. "Yeah why not he isn't a bad guy. that people were looking for you I never imagined. "He told you!" I added wanting to shoot him in the kneecaps as the mobster kid I was. "I think that a date is not that bad. I never wanted you to suffer and certainly not that young. he is one of the good Moroi. "She had been accepted to Kings college in London but she was pretty intrigued by Muslim . "I know you are honest enough to answer my questions. taking my hand in hers. "How did you meet?" I asked curiously. "Since when he is not a bad guy?" I couldn't help but ask." She shrugged." She said wanting to spare me and it was the most considerate I've ever seen her. because clearly I wouldn't tell her more than necessary." she said dismissively. "you already lived through so much. not even in a million years. "I phoned him to thank him because…" She sighed and sat beside me on the bed." I smiled remembering her saying that Abe was a good man. "And considering Ivashkov I was wrong about him he really does care about you. "Well I was mainly surprised but I could see why you fell for each other." A date is just a date." She said staring at the wall and I knew she was now lost in her thoughts. that he would be the one coming after you!! It was pretty dangerous for someone…someone like him to do that and I needed to tell him I appreciated it that's it." she added with a small smile playing on her lips." she said in such a tone that I knew she was not talking about me only. how he tried to support and help Lissa." she simply said. I didn't need to cause her more worry and pain. "I'm just sad for you really. that was private!! "I did but not to spy on you or anything. I nodded. "I guess you have questions about my trip. "Disappointed? No. "Well I graduated and got assigned to Clarissa Voda. "You know when you went missing I called him for help but I thought he would just send messages to his many contacts. That's when I finally understood everything." And that's when I understood everything and she realized she shouldn't have said 'move on' "You talked to Abe!" I said sitting on her bed." I said. "I've seen how truly worried he was about you when you were away Rose.
Half-way through the first year of college Clarissa got a once in a lifetime offer to study at the University of Istanbul where she could even assist a very renowned professor. I saw her as a guardian robot for so long." She said. Anyways. "So I left and it broke my heart. 'Bigshot-I-own-the-place' with us. I could see that a part of her still loved him…After all these years I just didn't know how important that part might be. eager to hear it all and she told me all about the rich and powerful Mazur family that owned half of the businesses in Turkey. "But I was intrigued you know. seeming farther away now. "He didn't want me to leave at the end of the summer but I was not the kind to abandon my charge. he just grinned and started to act all Mr. "Oh wow…'' I said imagining my mother going after a man like him. wicked." She replied. At the time I didn't have the control I have now. the face closed off from emotion." She said with nostalgia. I never thought I would see him ever again. "Aşkım?" I asked confused. I sat beside her. That's when I crossed Aşkım's path for the first time." We both chuckled at that. I despised the man right on the spot. "He was a student there?" I inquired in order for her to continue. his business is irrelevant and none of your concern. "Was he already that…exuberant?" I asked curiously. "Abe. "When he noticed me. "How old was he back then?" "He was 23 and I was 18. "I was at the library keeping an eye on Clarissa when that big Moroi walked in like he owned the place! He was followed by two guardians looking all big staring at people with disdain behind dark sunglasses." She shook her head but smiled brightly… brighter than I ever saw her smile before. and earring so yeah he was. Later on he told me that's exactly when he fell for me. He was just so intriguing moreover when Clarissa saw him she hissed that trouble was on the way. It was an offer she just couldn't refuse and as soon as we arrived at the airport there he was waiting for me. "And she started to talk about their son Ibrahim who was even more powerful than his parents as he was not reluctant to bend the line between what was legal and what was not. I was only a guardian for 3 weeks." My moms' voice dropped slowly like she was revealing something in confidence." She added and I could hear some longing in her voice even if she was doing one hell of a job to hide it. a machine without emotion. wavy. while looking at her.architecture so her parents decided she should spend the summer as a student at the University of Istanbul. He has a very big heart. She chuckled. I put him back in his place showing him I was not impressed that I was as 'badass' as he was. It was hard to acknowledge her as an actual person with feelings and weaknesses. "That's funny." I said. He was a good man and I know he still his." "Total badass!!" I blurted out before cursing myself hoping she would continue. Like I said to you before." She stopped and squeezed my hand. hair going down to his shoulders…just like yours. "I was a lot like you Rose. long. It was Abe alright! He was like that walking in the streets of Baia. ." she added putting a string of my hair behind my ear. "If by exuberant you mean flashy scarves. golden jewelry. "We became friends. I'd never been out of the Academy much. "He even had long hair at the time you know. My mom nodded." She added and again it was possible to see that a part of her still loved him. I opened my mouth to say something but she shushed me by continuing." she specified still completely lost in her memories." she added. it was not who I was. maybe she regretted her choice now. it was almost unrealistic. She gave me an amused look before she continued. "Right! Aşkım and authority never really worked well together!" She said with so much fondness that it actually made my chest tighten.
"So a date with Adrian tomorrow night?" Said my mother with a fork in her hand and I appreciate how she used his first name. 'We both thought it'd be best if he wasn't in your life. I laughed to myself he was such a hypocrite. He wanted to assume you know. "I swear my pregnancy didn't break us up. "I'm so sorry!" I said crashing on her chest. "I honestly don't know Rose. "Do you think I'll see him again?" I asked my mother." I rolled my eyes. As I said before. "We dated for the next two years and then… then I got pregnant with you and things changed." she sighed and kissed the top of my head. "Really!" She said looking deep into my eyes to show me that she was sincere.' They wanted me to be raised well. "What?! Why??" My mother asked sounding completely confused and wrapping her arms around me. you couldn't help it when you're in love. "No no Rose don't even think that. It was my identity and well. his activities were…'' She seemed to think for a minute." We were the only one in the kitchen and that was good. "never mind. I was 20 and he was 25 then. I felt guilty for all the hard times I gave her over the years." She laughed when I nodded. Some first loves lasted! His actions and my mothers' face were proof of it and I intended to let him know that. When I told him that he wasn't a role model he told me. but I wouldn't rule it out. I was not ready to let go of my guardian duties it was who I felt I was. since now part of me really wanted to know him. "I guess you noticed that the man was pretty impressive and could get anything he wants. "But that's when we started to talk about the future you see."Don't ask me how he pulled that one off because I honestly don't know and I never asked." she said pushing me back to look into my eyes. "I kinda like him you know." She said with a playful smile. "Yeah…I owe him one." she said with a playful smile. I looked at her and my eyes filled up with tears. "Well let's go to the kitchen and grab something to eat. I would bet that he was since I entered it as a student. "long story. his activities were his own business and he didn't want to let go. He sacrificed his time with her to assure me a good future. "Because of me you've lost each other. "Anyways. 'it's exactly because of the life I lead that you should listen to me when I say abandon this path and go back home. We thought that it was better to call it quit." I remember what my mother had told me when I found out that Abe was my father." I said standing up. I could have had a worse father. you're in love." she replied and stood as well. freed from his somehow harmful influence and he was a benefactor of this school. He had to have loved my mother deeply for taking those inconsiderate risks 18 years later for a daughter he didn't even know. Abe is the kind of man to do exactly what he wants to." I said sobbing on her chest. as much as I loved the person he was." I said concentrating on my pasta. far from his shabby business but as my mother said before. That life was no place for a child Rose.' Abe also said something quite similar back in Baia. . "I see a lot of him in you and before you go all offended it's a compliment. I told you he is a good man Rose. She said." "Really?" I asked blowing my nose in a very unlady like way. But he is a good man it's just…" I shook my head. he never let me down.
" "Right!" She snorted taking my number." I said chuckling." she said her eyes and voice full of sorrow and pain "You have to let time do its job and open the door to the people who are trying to help you." . Apparently I was a bit above the rules here…I was Badass Hathaway after all. "I'm alright I wanted to give you my number you know for when you come back home. "Will you tell me why you left to go to Baia?" My mother finally asked." I said hoping I was right. "Hello?" She said warily. it won't be a burden to remember. I smiled at her." "Believe me Sydney he would get mad if he didn't get my message. "Rose!! How are you doing?!" She asked sounding genuinely pleased. I reached for my brand new cell phone I bought the day before and looked for Sydney's letter. "All right I'll tell that to my superiors but I can't promise anything. It was silly to even think that she was scared of me at first. 'why are you here?' he'll finally get his answer."No tell me. five years. Give him my phone number and tell him that Rose Hathaway has the answer to his question. "Unfortunately. "Maybe not today but one day. The memories won't hurt so much anymore and you'll even smile." she added probably not wanting to add to my distress." I said as it was exactly the kind of honesty I needed." Sydney responded. any kind of healing is good to take. As for getting over it…'' She grimaced slightly. apparently uncomfortable." "You too Mum." She nodded and kissed my forehead. "Sydney? It's your favorite evil creature." "Do you think I will get better?" I asked as she was really the only one here that I trusted who could actually have the beginnings of an answer. "Have a good night Rose. It was 6 am here so it meant that it was 4 pm in St Petersburg." she said teasing back. "I want to help. "The guy hates to be bothered. "Nice you know me that well already." ( He kept asking me over and over again. "I wanted Zmey's number but I know you don't have it." She asked laughing. "I will tell you very soon. "Anytime Rose. Not like it mattered." I said decided to play it honestly. "This aching in my chest…Do you think I'll get over it? Over him?" "You will get better Rose. not completely anyways but one day in a year." She said reaching for my hand from across the table.) "Oooo that's tough Rose. I just need to tell that to someone else first but then I'll tell you everything I promise. She sighed. or maybe even ten years." "Thank you Ma. My mom walked me back to the dorms since it was after curfew." I said teasing." she said with concern. If you want we can go hunt strigoi together. "You'll never get over it." I said before running to my room. "Anyways I know you need something come on tell me. "I need you to get him a message.
bowing slightly before handing me a big bunch of flowers. more like me. First the training with Stan turned pretty messy since it seemed we were both trying to take revenge on something. "you are very good looking yourself!" I said quickly assessing him. I'd always seen Adrian as being a very picky. I left my hair down and settled for some lip gloss. Then Christian snapped at Eddie when he tried to mettle in his relationship with Lissa. Area 51?? Part of me was scared that Abe didn't actually want a relationship with me. "Actually I do…a little. luxurious man and these flowers were different. "Talk to you soon. "Thank you.What was it. I was relieved that Lissa kept all my belongings after I left the Academy. They were daisies with a single red rose in the middle. I knew it sounded juvenile and irrational but it would really crush me to be rejected by him. I couldn't help but smile! I was pretty sure it wasn't my mother because it didn't have that military feel like her knocks tended to have. simple yet still sort of classy. It was pretty sober. See I'm so alone that I'm missing an evil creature of the night. hopefully. I didn't know how to dress either because being too dressed up would probably give him the wrong idea and too casual could be insulting. I opened the door to a smiling Adrian but it was not the kind of smile I was used to. All I came back with were the clothes I had on my back and some of Dimitri's jewelry (which I needed to sell very soon. I didn't know if you could call a bright smile 'serious' but it was exactly the case here. He was probably the only man I could call the 'classy-casual' type." Well now I needed to figure out a plan for Victor and wait for Zmey senior to phone me but before I had to be ready for my date for Adrian."Thank you!" I said sincerely. "So….. a role I never liked nor excelled in." I said laughing. All in All.Do you miss me??" I asked teasing her again. So. but nice and not too revealing.. I just hoped it would be better tonight. It was such a simple yet gorgeous bouquet that it surprised me.. Maybe he helped me only because he felt that he owed something to my mother. in memory of the past. "Rose you look stunning!" He said. That was it. I was just finishing getting ready when I heard a light knock on the door. Even in my dreams when he was barefoot. I hoped that the day would end way better than it started because today sucked ass. I really couldn't put a name on it but it seemed to run deeper. it could help me with my Victor plan). it was a shitty day and nothing went my way. I had to be the pacifier. Chapter 4: I was getting ready for my date and as silly as it sounded. Lissa even lent me a black cashmere shawl to go with it. Abe didn't call me AND I tried to find out which prison Victor Dashkov was in and I found nothing!! It was like the location was protected by freaking Homeland Security. I felt slightly nervous about it. It meant that whatever he was wearing he always had this classy edge and this royal vibe. I finally settled for a pair of low waist black jeans and a silky red tank top with thick straps. my favorite stalker but still it seemed more serious somehow. the old pair of faded . I half expected her to come knock on my door anytime telling me that Abe phoned her and that I should stop trying to contact him." "Love you too Sydney. It was Adrian." I said feeling sincerely pleased and taking the flowers.
He followed me out walking by my side. "Well that will be your job to figure out my little dhampir. so crazily original." He said giving me an amused sidelong glance. "Please don't spoil the surprise. an emerald green button up shirt. "So what made you decide to get me daisies?" I asked curiously reaching for the big long box of smarties I had." I said warily. "Well the second reason is the meaning of course. "I…guess." he said teasing. just like you. "Yeah sorry. I frowned and looked up at him. Right now he was wearing a pair of black dress pants. We were near the administration building when Adrian stopped me putting his hand on my shoulder. "You said the first reason but what is the second one?" I asked." he said and I could hear the clear disapproval in his voice. I was scared we would end up on the Mexican border completely drunk with tequila…maybe not such a bad plan based on my shitty day…shitty weeks really. and black tank top. I shrugged dismissively reaching for the shawl. I swirled around looking deep into his eyes trying to spot any kind of joke or teasing but there was none." he said softly leaning against the wall looking at me moving around. The air was still a bit cold for end of May but the shawl made it very agreeable. It was probably one of the most beautiful compliments anyone ever gave me. "Note for next time." "Which are?" I asked but I wasn't really sure I wanted the answer." He said barely louder than a whisper. ugliest vase in the history of the world but it would have to do." I said grimacing. . "The flowers needed to convey the right sentiments. and black jacket. he looked far more impressive and royal than most the guys I knew when they were in tuxedos.blue jeans." he said taking what looked like a black tie from his jacket pocket." "That has not been proven. I had been emptying the box when he said that and it almost slipped out of my hand. those flowers are simple there is no big fuss about them but it makes them even more beautiful… even more stunning because they don't need to be extravagant to be noticed. "I'm not used to getting flowers…except from you. "A little bit of work won't hurt you. "Firstly. I'll bring a vase too." he said chuckling as I put the flowers on the desk. "Well…Two reasons really." I said with a small smile before rushing to the small sink to fill the plastic box with water. It was true that Adrian was one of the people I trusted the most but he was so exuberant sometimes." I said with a slight pout making him laugh. changing subject walking out of the room. "Do you trust me Rose?" He asked mysteriously. He smiled." I added joking. I let the door open and invited him in while I tried to figure out where to put the flowers. "Thank you. It was probably the crappiest. It was not something I expected. "And that's just a shame.
"What do you want to do with that?" I asked pointing to the tie. "Strangle me? I don't think you'll be strong enough." I said half joking trying to hide my discomfort. "I could never hurt you Rose." He said so seriously, more seriously than I ever heard him before. "I just want the surprise to be total, let me blindfold you." I felt my heart tighten in my chest. Someone else also made that same promise to me in what seemed to be another lifetime and nobody ever hurt me more than that person. I nodded slightly giving him permission to actually take away the sense on which I related the most. "I would never let you fall, I'll never let you down Rose," he said fondly after knotting the tie. "I know…'' I said not really sure if I liked the idea on how much I trusted that half crazy Moroi. Adrian wrapped an arm around my shoulders as I wrapped mine around his waist mainly to help my steadiness. Although, I could feel his muscles tightening slightly under my touch and I had to admit shamefully and selfishly that it felt good to have this effect on someone. It was exactly the way I used to react each time Dimitri touched me. We walked like that for about 10 minutes. I registered that we entered and exited the building again based on the gentle wind caressing my skin. "Are we there yet?" I asked in an annoyingly childish voice. "Yes we are," he whispered so close that I could feel his warm breath on my face. I could feel him standing behind me and he softly removed the tie from my eyes. What I saw took my breathe away. "I--Oh my." I said with wide eyes. This was a part of the campus I had actually never seen before. I could see the glass patio where I had the hot chocolate with Dimitri pretty far on my left side. I assumed we were behind the guardian administrative building, but who would have thought that that rear end was so beautiful? "Do you like it?" He asked expectant still standing behind me resting his hands on my shoulders. I looked around still in awe. There was a small pond, much smaller than the other one on the other side, but with the trees and flowers, the full moon reflecting in the water like a sliver lining it was simply magical. There was also a beautiful white kiosk on the bank. The kiosk was illuminated with strands of fairy lights and there was a table set for a candle lit dinner…I called Adrian extravagant, I never thought he could be a romantic. "It's beautiful," I said sincerely and I felt his hands relax on my shoulders. "Come on," he said standing by my side and taking my hands to intertwine our fingers. I looked down at our hands with surprise and as silly as it was, I felt like I was cheating on Dimitri, somehow betraying his memory…Our love. "You want me to let go?" Asked Adrian and I could hear the underlying pain in his voice. I looked up and met his eyes, "No…it's nice." I said with a small smile not wanting to hurt him. I wanted him to be happy, he was a good man, he deserved to be happy. He flashed his million dollar smile and gently pulled me with him to the kiosk.
God help me not to break his heart. I thought as he pulled my chair out to gallantly help me sit. Once we sat at the table a young man I had never met before came from the glass patio with a big platter setting a plate in front of each of us. "Spaghetti and Meatballs?" I asked truly surprised. I expected some persnickety food like caviar (ewww), Foie Gras, lobster, but certainly not some basic Italian food like spaghetti and meatballs. "Yeah," he said with a small smile while serving us some San Pellegrino sparkling water, he really went to the details. "Don't you like Italian?" He asked but I could see that he already had the answer to that. "Of course I do!!" I said looking at the plate with the scent of the wonderful oregano sauce filling up my nostrils almost making me drool. "But…But how did you know??" "That my little dhampir…It's a gift," he said tapping his temple gently. "Of course," I said rolling my eyes but it gave me a chill. I knew he couldn't do it but Oksana and crazy Avery could. Adrian would probably be able to do it one day and that was scary because there were certain things in my head I'd rather die than let him see. I could only see good things in his eyes when he was looking at me, seeing the repulsion would kill me. "Nah," He chuckled "I heard you talk to Lissa once about how when you were starving while held hostage in Spokane, it was the memory of the meatballs pasta from some little restaurant in Portland so…" he pointed to my plate. "Here we go," he added with a wink. "You remember that?" I asked startled. "Of course!" He said like it was an evidence. "I remember everything you said." "I--" I shook my head I couldn't believe how caring he was, it was actually getting harder and harder to play detached because now if I ended up hurting him it would hurt me deeply too. I simply nodded concentrating on the food. "Let's eat before it gets cold," I added pointing to my plate. Adrian nodded apparently seeing my discomfort. We ate mostly in silence when the dessert came, I almost squealed. It was tiramisu and I loved tiramisu! He was just so sweet with me but I couldn't help to think that Dimitri was still around and what if I could save him? What would happen to Adrian then? I didn't even notice that I sighed out loud. "What is bothering you Rose? There is so much sadness in your eyes…" He reached for my hand from across the table. "If it makes you sad to be here with me …" he took a deep breath. "I don't want you to be sad, not because of me." He stood up, "let me walk you back to your room, we can't say we didn't try." I looked at him agape. "What?!" I asked stupidly staying on my chair. "You think I'm sad to be with you?" I shook my head. He shrugged slightly but sat back down. "No it's…" I thought for a minute I didn't want them to know that Dimitri was still running around, at least not yet. I needed to put my plan in action and see if it was possible to do anything. Part of me knew that if they found out about Dimitri they would think I was crazy to do all that just for him….and maybe I was.
"It's what?" He encouraged me. "Well you are a very good guy, you're kind and caring and good looking," I said grimacing. "And it's bad how?" He asked chuckling but I could see the real wonder in his eyes. "I don't want to hurt you, I just don't know if I can...if I ever could offer you what you deserve and…you deserve so much more than a 'maybe one day'," I said honestly. "I haven't moved on, and I'm not ready to. I would go crazy thinking I'm leading you on," I added, my voice shaking. He nodded. "Ok," he said simply. "But I never thought that one date would be the beginning of a relationship Rose. Knowing how passionate you are, how you put your heart in everything you do, it would have been insulting to even think you could move on like that." He reached for my hand again. "You didn't promise to marry me Rose, you didn't sign a contract with your blood," he added chuckling. "Consider me warned ok? I know what I'm entering and what if we just took things slowly…friends?" "Friends?" I asked raising an eyebrow. "Yeah special friends, spending time together, enjoying each others company no strings attached. And if it has to happen than it will and if it doesn't well…That's life. " He said with his goofy grin. I chuckled too. "I just don't want you to get hurt." "Let me worry about that ok?" He asked standing up opening his hand. "Dance with me little dhampir." I took his hand and stood up. "But…there is no music." I said surprised. He winked at me and reached for a little remote that was in his other pocket. He pressed a button and I finally noticed the little radio discreetly hidden beside my his chair. Nick Lachey's voice filled the air and for once I did recognize the song, it was 'Run to me'. Very fitting I thought as he wrapped his left arm around my waist, holding me tight against him, so tight I could smell the woody, mossy odor of his pricy aftershave. I would recognize this sublime aroma everywhere it was Xs for Men by Paco Rabanne. We danced for a little while and I had to admit it did feel nice. Adrian was a very good dancer and being in his arms was pleasant, knowing that someone cared about me that way. "May I hold your hand walking you back to your quarters?" He asked with so much courtesy it made me laugh, so 18th century. "As friends of course." "Of course…" I said and I couldn't help but blush slightly as his fingers intertwined with mine. We walked back in silence actually enjoying each others presence, it was not awkward and I liked that. "Well thank you again. I really enjoyed myself it was one of the best evenings I have had in a very long time." I said sincerely. "Me too Rose, I really enjoyed every minute of it," he said nicely. As he leaned down to hug me I stood on my toes and kissed his cheek. He jerked up eyes wide with surprise and touched the spot with his fingertips as if my kiss burned him.
"Abe? Are you still with me?" I asked frowning." I said and I didn't realize how much emotion I had in my voice. "I could see it in someone's face recently that even after 20 years it was still there." I bit my bottom lip. "You apparently have the answer to my question and I like to have my curiosity satisfied so Rose…Why were you in Baia?" I took a deep breathe before answering. "So thank you. He didn't give up on me after all. "Sleep well." ." I smiled and I was sure he could hear it in my voice. for not giving too much away to my mother and for trying to get the information you know I'm longing for. for helping me when I didn't realize I needed it.He seemed completely dazed." He said the voice lower than usual probably under the emotions. Why out so late?" "Zmey!!" I shouted too pleased to have him on the phone." said Abe with some laughter in his voice. "If I remember correctly I never said that your first love wouldn't last forever or that it wouldn't be the strongest love you'll ever have experienced. As soon as walked in my cell phone started to ring I hurried and answered without even checking the number. I know for a fact that sometimes it does last for a lifetime!" I said with a sure voice." "Did you succeed?" He asked and I could hear no judgment in his voice. "What for?" He asked sounding taken aback. I…" I cleared my throat. "I thought I did." he said and I'll be damned but there was emotion in his voice." I said cursing myself. leaving him in the corridor. the lovestruck smile or even someone taking inconsiderate risks for someone he loved in another lifetime." Abe was quiet. quiet for so long that I thought he hung up on me." I said with a small smile walking into my room. "It's a long story." "You…you're welcome." "Well old man I think you were wrong considering first love. "So some first loves do last. "I think you were wrong. "Finally reaching you little girl. "Hello?" I said warily because the amount of people having my number was pretty limited and it was very late in our world and still very early in the human world. "For trying to keep me safe. Thank you so much." "Wrong? Me?!" He asked chuckling. "I once talked with Dimitri about if we were to be turned Strigoi one day and we both agreed that we rather be dead than to be changed." I said sitting on my bed. I can sleep in the morning. "So I heard you were eager to talk to me. "We agreed we would do that for each other. "It's Friday night I was out with friends." I said without even thinking. "I was about to give up. "I also wanted to thank you. "You 'thought'?" he asked confused." he said seriously. I had to keep my promise. "That would be a first so please little girl tell me where I was wrong." I said jumping up. "Oh just one more thing. When he didn't say anything I took it as an invitation to continue. "I just said that you would love again…eventually even if a part of you will always belong to someone else.
" he said warily." he sounded even colder. could be repaired. "There is no point in me telling you Rose. "I can't offer more but… tell me please. It would just be longer than what I expected. Damn Zmey senior!! Chapter 5: Today did start a lot better than yesterday." He sighed. She was still the tough guardian. she would still look cold and detached to an outsider but to me she was totally different now. "Why?" "Can you tell me where please?" I asked really trying to hide my eagerness." "I…" I started. maybe just beg him I was pretty sure he would enjoy that. "Don't be like Don Quichotte Rose. were showing me respect when I walked by them and this included Jesse and Ralph. "I'm sorry Rose but no I won't tell you and. rightfully or not." He said. She said approvingly and taking an offensive stance and we did what we both did best…Fight. it still felt extremely awkward to talk about my love life. Still. . it was Saturday so it meant no classes and no sidelong glances from my fellow students. with her. Not every story has its happy ending." I said and I couldn't help but to sound like a begger because it was exactly what I was doing. Bless her heart. his voice colder now. And I won't help you on this path. Firstly. "Can I ask you a question?" I tried. all the mistakes that had been made. Even if it was getting better and better between us. I could see the curiosity and hope in her eyes. Fellow students that were even getting out of my way whenever I walked through the corridors. we'll just see where it leads' Friends it's good. having the power over me was worth something. fighting some imaginary battle. I was just getting out of training with my mother and I couldn't help but smile. Concentrate on the tangible. It will not end well."I see…" I said and I understood what he just said." I added before hanging up and turning the phone off. "You know where Victor is in jail right?" I asked trying to do my best to sound neutral. "I…Do. "I just wanted to thank you so thanks…and have a nice life. I was about to tell him to 'fuck off ' but I did see the real concern and worry in his eyes back in Novosibirsk. royal or not. I haven't given up on the idea of getting Christian to join us. I'd go to his room and drag his hardheaded ass if I had to. She asked me about my date trying to sound as detached as she could. a part of him still loved my mother and probably always would. slow. she was just hoping that I would heal fast enough. "Now you should just forget about these bedtime stories and grow up. on what is good in your life." he said matter of factly. "He wouldn't give me any information and I offered him a lot of things. or rather my lack of one. So I stayed pretty evasive with a 'we're taking things slow' and a 'we're friends for now. I still couldn't comprehend that! I had some plans with Eddie and Lissa this afternoon. Even the Moroi. With his help or not I was going to find out where Victor was incarcerated. I knew it was only worry talking. She was my mother and I knew at this point that with everything that had happened between us." "Don't talk to me like I'm a child old man! I know what I'm doing!" I said briskly because I hated to be talked down to. What could you possibly offer that I couldn't?" I just wanted to talk to him. begging. "You can…I'm not saying I'll answer though. "Go to bed it's time. it's very good.
Lissa nodded thinking about how much she missed him.she was with Christian. pain." he said with a small smile as he turned to leave. "Will what?" He asked now being the one standing by the door and I understood when he told her to stay. guilt. idiotic type. the one that swore to take revenge? Any normal 'princess' would give up this hope before it got her killed but not me. the princess was now dancing with the fine line between sanity and despair not really knowing how strong she really is. At least talk to her geez!! "You and me?" She asked pointing to both of them trying her best to keep her feelings in order because she was a mere step away from breaking down. and sorrow coming from her and it could mean only one thing.When we were done my mother went it the direction of the guardians building because she was scheduled for a morning shift. What if the spell could be broken? What if the prince could return home and save the princess from her own bleeding heart? What if this infinitesimal chance was in the hands of the bad wizard. "Will it always be like that?" Asked Lissa not able to hide the longing and pain in her voice any longer. The prince had been cursed. stood up looking pained. Almost immediately. Abe did tell me that not every fairy tale gets its happy ending and of course I knew that." he said softly brushing some dust from his pants.. "Avoiding each other. What she wouldn't give for him to hold her tightly in his arms again while whispering in her ear how much he loved her. not able to help but feel a bit jealous that Christian confided in me." "That's what Rose said. who was sitting in a corner. "I'll see you later. Well actually. he was probably as shocked as I was myself when I defended him. she chastised herself because she preferred he did confide in me rather than in anyone else.. Christian. Also. except that in my case the chances to get my prince back were close to absolutely zero. "You have as much of a right to be here as I do. It hurt me to feel that with her because I felt just the same. Christian and I apparently owned the corner of the 'self-sacrificing' shit." "I…" Christian sighed and ran a shaky hand through his hair. My fairy tale turned into a nightmare in just seconds. Lissa was standing near the door of the chapel attic. I could feel a wave of uneasiness. Those two needed help and I needed to know the material I was working with. I was the masochistic. I went towards the Moroi dorm to spend a bit of alone time with Lissa but I could feel that she wasn't there. . I was just super curious and dying to know but the first excuse seemed far more commendable. their old love nest ." Lissa muttered. it meant that he would be the one leaving… Idiot! I thought." He added as she took two slow steps in. How far could we go before we break? That is the question she kept asking herself. self-destructive. "Don't be silly… you don't have to go because I'm here. Surprise crossed Christian's face. I saw the pure anguish in Christian's eyes but I didn't think Lissa registered it. whispering about how everything would be ok. "Please Lissa give…just give me some time to figure it out. I bit my bottom lip and decided to sit under the oak tree near her dorm just to slip in her mind for a few minutes. I would hold on to that hope till the end thinking 'Come what may!' I concentrated on Lissa and Christian again.
She wanted to do honor to her name and it ran deep in her blood. "So what is the problem?" She asked almost plaintively. If you sacrificed that part of you. She realized it was not only anger or her silly behaviors during my absence that made him break up with her. "I understand. Christian froze with one hand on the door frame. "I was just getting tired playing the Court and royal game. To some extent it was one. I mean you are the last Dragomir and it's a terrible burden to carry and I'm genuinely sorry for you. she also couldn't deny that."I just miss you so much." He said softly and you could read the sincerity in his face." said Christian." he said with pride. "Yes you have to Lissa. it all sounded scarily reasonable and she hated the idea to lose the man she loved because it was the reasonable thing to do." Lissa nodded. As long as there is love." He admitted and sat down in front of her." "I love you too and you know that. "It has nothing to do with Aaron or even Avery because lets face it. "So why aren't we together?" She asked him. the exact same moment than I said it to myself. he turned around to face her. "And I know you'll end up as our ruler one day. It ran deeper. Lissa was so happy he decided to stay and she considered that as a small victory. "I understand your desire to live up to the name of your parents. She didn't want to say it but she decided that her relationship with Christian was just more important than her pride. "I love you." She said but part of her deep down knew that she was lying to herself. "I miss you too Lissa. It was a little eerie! "Would you mind developing?" Lissa asked and now I could even feel anger in her. "Love has never been our problem. you wanted me to come with you when you went to the Court. Love is not the problem. "Whatever it is I'm sure we can work on it. "Why are you smiling?" Asked Lissa curiously." He finally said. she was human enough to do it. I mean…we don't have to. the problem is what we are and what we want to become." she said with a sigh." Lissa whispered. Christian smiled. Slowly. You would have never kissed that guy and…" He shrugged slightly." "Sometime love just isn't enough. Chill out Liss…Just breathe. it was something he really thought about but she did her best to keep her face blank for him to continue. . "We both need to consider the future seriously before it's too late and that irreparable mistakes are made. unable to stop her own smile." He replied. you'd end up resenting me. it's who you are and it's part of the girl I love. So lets just take a step back on everything and think for a while. the rest will follow. He looked thoughtful." "But I don't need to play the game." He smiled. I thought in a useless attempt to calm her down." Lissa seemed to get more and more desperate by the second. you know that right. "and you'll be the best ruler the Moroi world will ever have but… I'm not sure I'm ready to play the game or I don't know how long it will be before I can't do it anymore and it's not fair to any of us.
fidelity. I just do it to you and I never denied it. "She told me to talk to you . the friendship. if only they saw what I could see." he said chuckling at my name." "Yeah poor Rose. I wanted to ask you something since you seem to know everything." He shook his head. "Yea? Well she told me to grant you the space you asked for." He shook his head. beauty. "God forbid I ever do that!!" She said teasing him back. "It would be better for the kid. "I've been sitting here for the last 10 minutes so…" He winked. "Says the guy who dream stalks people and I was just checking on her to see if she was alright." he said goofily." "Uh huh right. It said they mean loyal love. I decided to purposely forget about that." . I reached down with my hand to help him up. that you were smart and that you would understand. "It's Rose. "Anyways…. "She could almost denounce us for child abuse. at least for the time being. "If I didn't know you better I'd say you were spying on your best friend. and the love." I said only half joking because even if the secret of the alchemist was very well kept he knew about it." said Adrian chuckling. "she was so right. "You know together or not we could at least try to be friends…" Lissa shrugged. or you were spying. She said avoiding you was just making the situation unnecessarily uncomfortable." I said laughing. which I know is not the case. "We've go one hell of badass guardian angel don't we?" Christian asked with a grin. so much love that it actually hurt me to think how I let her down. "Uh huh!" I said rolling my eyes. I probably wouldn't have my fairy tale ending but I could help them have theirs." Lissa actually laughed. patience." "I agree." Lissa said fondly. "Yep… She is the best." They both started to laugh and I exited her head with a smile on my face. My smile faded as soon as I opened my eyes and saw someone sitting in front of me with a wide grin on his face." said Adrian teasingly while folding one of his long legs up and resting his chin on his knee. and simplicity. I thought and decided to drop the subject. share your feelings. "And I don't dream stalk everybody. "either you are super slow to assess a situation. "I agree but if you ever rat me out I'll deny it with my life." She smiled and I could feel all her love for me. "Well well well my little Dhampir. "Good now that I'm with you. "Well yeah I do know about everything and if your question is 'can we have some angry sex on the roof of the building?'" He replied and pointed up.What Christian said startled me." He replied teasingly." He said seriously before smiling. "Anyways. "We could at least give it a try. I did do some quick research last night on the meaning of the daisies." I blushed slightly. "my answer will be 'of course!'" "OK…good to know." Lissa added with exaggerated contrition.how are you doing today?" I asked standing up. At this exact moment I could see it was still there the connivance. "No my question is more serious actually. that you just needed time to think and that it wasn't too much to ask." Okay one for Ivashkov.
"I honestly never thought you would be the one to be concerned about that Rose. "I'm not sure a lot of people even have the answer. "I can try to find out if you want me to but I can't promise anything. "No I don't know." He said coldly standing up with his jaw locked." he had a smile playing on his lips. dirtiest jail in the world."Business…always business with you Rose. "Yeah…" I said getting out of his grip. my patience was wearing thin. I thought all that mattered to you was that he was locked away for life possibly in the shabbiest. "Do you know where Victor Dashkov is incarcerated?" "Oh!" Said Adrian eyebrows arched with surprise. and anger cross his face. I would try more often. "Wow if I knew that trying to answer your question would lead to that kind of reaction." I replied and hugged him tightly burying my face in his chest. . pretty sure that Christian was going to join us today. "Anyways what do you want to know?" I looked up meeting his eyes. "So do you know?" I questioned. holding me even tighter against him. "Listen we're all going to hang out together. He frowned slightly. even if it sounded crazy or unusual. "Do you want to hang out with us?" "A chance to hang out with Rose Hathaway?! I would be totally crazy to refuse!!" He said trying to make it sound like a banter but I knew he meant it. so agreeable that I was actually sorry to see it end." he said all teasing gone. sadness. He walked to the little wooden bench near the path and sat down." I shrugged cocking my head to the side. "You are breaking my heart." "I'm sorry. He shook his head." I said in a breathe. "Sometime it's true. We all spent just about every waking hour together. the biggest traitor. He really did mean what he said. cursing myself for reacting so impulsively. "That was honestly not something I saw coming. which could be seen as annoying for some but I just marveled to have some of my stability back. My friends were the one constant thing in my life and I had to hold on to that with dear life. He sighed. crappiest. "Thank you." He grimaced. I joined him but just stood in front of him. Almost immediately." "Sure I am." I said trying to sound as disinterested as I could. "You usually have ulterior motives for--" "Do you know or not?" I asked cutting him off." I said. "And I don't care." he said teasingly and wrapped his arms around me." I mumbled sarcastically." he said resting his hand on my shoulder. Christian was starting to be more and more like himself." He said bringing his hand to his chest." "You are not just curious Rose I know you by now. "It's alright Rose. "I haven't heard anything about him since the trial." he said apparently dazed. "I'm just curious. The week end was very agreeable." I saw his features soften by the second. "I didn't mean it. he is the biggest royal treat you know. I felt bad for snapping at him when I saw shock. he would help me whatever the reason was." I looked up at him and emotion washed over me.
"Umm either he got laid or he has exciting news…not sure. "I totally won." he added slightly pouting. By Monday night we were all like before except with less sexual tension from fire boy/spirit girl but a lot more from the spirit boy/crazy dhampir girl. now she could sit across from Christian without being sullen. "Yeah there is this guy and--" "YES!!" Said Adrian cutting Eddie's off with his hiss of victory." "Shit. The mobster reference swept my smile away. By Sunday night she was still longing for him but she managed to be there and just enjoy his presence. "Dude!! You won't even guess why I'm late!!" He said coming to sit beside Lissa. "Or a boy…Let's keep an open mind. "Yeah I had to go to the Administrative building to give the paperwork Alto forced me to collect during class you know. At first I could feel the pain radiating from her even if she concealed it so well. Told you he liked boys. "Maybe he is getting a quickie somewhere. He was with 3 guardians and talking to Kirova on how he would like to visit the school to see . waving her hand so Eddie could spot us. "Stop it" I said slapping Christian's arm which was almost immediately imitated by Lissa on Adrian.I was even impressed by Lissa's behavior. He was slightly flushed and a light of excitement was in his eyes. Lissa rolled her eyes but couldn't help but chuckle too." "You really are a pervert aren't you?" Asked Lissa elbowing him. "Uh…?" Eddie shook his head." said Adrian wiggling his eyebrows as he sat across from me. "Are you jealous I mean…I can help you with that. "Oh Rose I love when you talk dirty to me. About 5 minutes later we saw Eddie enter the common scanning the room probably looking for us." Adrian added. "Oh you are so funny guys!!" Said Eddie with heavy sarcasm. I quickly nodded trying my best not to jump from my seat. "Does it involve a girl?" Asked Christian suggestively." I said just to piss him off. I just rolled my eyes ignoring his comment but deep down I really liked his unwavering attention. I can't tell with him." he grinned and winked at me. "Where is your fellow dhampir?" Christian asked curiously as I sat beside him for dinner. "A mobster guy?!" I asked apparently the voice pretty appealing as Lissa eyed me warily and Eddie frowned. "Only as far as my little dhampir is concerned. "Anyways I got up there and there was this guy with flashy scarves and golden jewelry." he said to me. you owe me $20. "well I hope mobster dude blows up your knees. "Dunno…" I shrugged quickly scanning the room . But it was nice nevertheless." said Christian shaking his head with defeat." Christian stated so matter of factly that I burst into laugher.00 Ozera. Things were getting even better.
Vladimir!! It's going to get ugly. "Was my mother around?" I asked imagining the effect it would have on her to see him after all these years. And as expected they stopped laughing when Abe stopped just behind Lissa and Adrian and looked at me with his cocky. "Why would he even give money to a school…this school in the first place?" Asked Christian looking at me quizzically like I was a freaking Abe expert and had all the answers. it was true that he had a freakishly enormous charisma." "Oh that's good!!!" Said Adrian chuckling. I did have the answer to that particular question." Eddie looked up like he half expected for someone to be standing behind him." he added and I could hear the real respect in his voice." He frowned. "Is that---" "Yep" "The one that help you when--" "Uh huh. One of the guardians I met in Baia…Pavel I believe his name was. Well." "The knee blowing machine?" "The one and only. I could see why people just shut up when he was looking at them but he never impressed me. He slowly walked to our table as people started to whisper. sarcastic trade mark grin. Maybe…Maybe I always knew deep down that it was different. "What do you think he wants?" Asked Christian warily." said Christian chuckling and keeping his eyes on Abe." he said resting his hands on the back of Adrian's chair. "Yeah no wonder he scares people shitless. he dropped his voice.how the generous donations he had been making for the part 15 years had been used. Lissa looked at me with wide eyes. Lissa was whispering in Eddie's ear probably helping him get up to speed. oh the man is something. All three of them were looking at me with wonder which was making me self conscious." I said almost wanting to laugh at the irony of the moment. "I mean if his reputation is accurate I don't think he gives a shit about his donations. . Oh you won't laugh long I thought seeing Abe approaching our table. "Apparently the guy is like one of the biggest mafia bosses… Mazur I think was his name is. then so be it. that I was different. "Yeah I think I know why he did that you see he---" I started but stopped when an almost eerie silence fell over the room. "Oh. "Abe Mazur at St. Eddie shook his head negatively. I looked up and saw Abe looking right at me." added Adrian laughing too. "Hello Little girl. I thought it was the time to come clean and if my mother got mad for me telling the truth to my friends. I bet the others thought he would continue to the end of the room to join the guardian quarters but I knew better. He was only with one of his guardians.
I also knew that Kazim meant 'daughter' in Turkish that I randomly started to learn words from the Turkish. He looked at Lissa raising an eyebrow about to talk but he was stopped by Christian." I said trying not to show he destabilized me. . "Yes Kazim?" He asked apparently pleased with my efforts. just vastly surprised. Not such a smart mouth anymore I thought laughing. "I missed you." He whispered to me." "What the f--" Started Adrian trying to see in my face if it was the true but I probably paled 2 shades and gave away the answer. They were used to our unusual way of conversing but Abe lost his natural smugness for just a second. Christian. It helped me to keep my mind occupied during my nightly alone time. "Hi dad. I bet they knew that not a lot of people could disrespect Abe Mazur and get away with it. "Excuse me? Are you calling me a psycho criminal?" Asked Abe now concentrating his attention on Christian.Adrian was looking at me and I could see he was tense. "Well at least now we know where Rose got her 'psycho-criminal' side from. I couldn't help but smile at his comment. I looked at him wide eyed and mouth half open probably just like Lissa and Eddie. "Hello old man. he couldn't keep his witty mouth closed. I was probably looking like I was having an attack of some sort. You never told me that!! Rose that's big!! Why didn't you say something like 'By the way the mobster guy is my dad. and Eddie didn't react. "Anyway baba…" I said for Abe to concentrate on me. "How are you doing?" Lissa was completely astonished." muttered Christian just loud enough so I was the only one able to hear him. I had a small glimpse of Mad Abe in Baia and that wasn't it. Baba was the Turkish translation of dad and I knew it would be enough to divert his attention. you can call me Daddy." I said under the incredulous eyes of my friends. I didn't know that when I told you the whole story. His eyes and voice were pretty cold but I knew he wasn't mad. He didn't look that smart now. "Help me. You had to give it to him whatever the situation. we probably were brother and sister in another life.'? She said through the bond." he said chuckling. I came to check on my daughter!" He said still keeping his eyes locked on mine. "What brings you to the middle of Montana?…Business?" I asked with heavy sarcasm raising an eyebrow but I was sure I was not looking as cool as Dimitri used too. Adrian. "I couldn't have." He grinned. "And by the way you should stop calling me 'old man' it's not very polite. "Nah. "We should stop the pretenses. The others were looking completely astonished. She wasn't mad. That was something I didn't expect./English dictionary I borrowed from the library. you know." he said nudging me playfully. "Poor kid. whoever she is." I answered to her unspoken thoughts. "I…" Started Christian the eyes widening slightly. "And he wants to sleep with your daughter!" Christian blurted out pointing at Adrian.
" I said standing beside Abe. Want to go somewhere private?" I asked Abe. and above all else. "Smooth…really smooth. longing. Lissa warned me through the bond. "Promise Liss.'' He said his voice slightly threatening. I could feel Abe tense up beside me and I dared a quick look to his face. " As we turned around I saw the little red head walking in the room and. What I saw in my moms' eyes was just breath taking."Thanks Ozera. It was pain. She smiled at me probably to tell me that everything was alright but as she looked up at him again.'' Said Abe very softly to my mother." said Adrian acerbically apparently doing his best not to look up and meet Abe's probable death glare. as their eyes met.'' I said doing my best to sound teasing. I was just guessed it was lovey dovey and gooey enough to make me puke. I want to know the whole story Rose! Tomorrow. there was love. He was probably here to kick my butt about my childish attitude on the phone and my stupid wish to find Victor. my heart literally crushed in my chest…at least the little part I had left. ''Oh you can count on it. sorrow. Damn!! He could do the sexy eyebrow thing too just like Dimitri! That was something I wished I had inherited from him. I knew most people would miss it but I knew her well enough and I knew that would be exactly how I would look when I see Dimitri again. "Let's go." I said standing up." Said Christian actually making me laugh. I didn't know what the Turkish words he just said meant and honestly I didn't want to know. "We're all going to keep our kneecaps. Abe gave me a strange smile." He said quickly glancing at both Christian and Adrian causing me to smile. We slowly walked to the door where she was waiting for us. Yeah I didn't react that well to love these days but who could blame me… ''What are you doing here?'' She asked trying to sound detached but I didn't think she fooled any of us. . ''Aren't you happy to see me?'' He asked raising an eyebrow. My mom nodded with a discreet sigh of relief. the longing was still there. "I'll see you tomorrow guys. "Hello meleğim. Oh my god!! She just blushed like a school girl!! I would have bet my silver stake that my mom could not blush except for when she was mad. too long bi tanem. Yeah I guess the expression of feelings was something that neither my mother nor father were experts in… I never stood a chance in that area. ''Well guys things are getting awkward for me right now. "Please…that would be nice." "What? I want to keep my kneecaps. ''So I think I'll go back to my room but I'll see you later'' I added to Abe's attention. It has been long. even in 20 years. his jaw was locked and his face somber.
not ashamed at all. It was silly. "Fine. ''I hope it's important or god help you I'll kick your butt. I still couldn't see his eyes because they were constantly hidden behind his very dark aviator sunglasses. As strange as it seemed I was not ashamed to be his daughter. Pavel looked grim and the other…Mishka. Pavel is going to take you to my private plane where Mishka (One of Abe's other guardians) is already waiting." He said with his very cold voice. I managed to do it. Abe nodded quickly. I heard the knock again. well he didn't look any better. I was happy when the plane finally landed. guardian Mishka is going to wait by the prison main door while you and I get inside. ''I'd like to see you try." he quickly glanced at his watch.'' He said clearly proud. it was even more impatient this time.'' ''Go? Go where?'' I asked looking from one to another. ''Arranged for you to see Victor Dashkov. I opened the door and swore with surprise when I saw both Abe and Pavel standing in front of me. ''I'm coming!'' I growled. stupid. I was just starting to drift into sleep when I heard a knock on my door. That man went out of his habits just for me. he took risks to keep me safe. and selfish but I just couldn't help it. I looked at the alarm clock and frowned. tomorrow I'll have to respond to the Gestapo questions about for being the biggest Moroi mobsters' daughter. Which was making me feel a bit uncomfortable. From Abe's concerned face to Pavel's grim one. "60 minutes and 60 minutes only to . I could already hear Christian's witty remarks and couldn't help but smile.'' I mumbled. It brought me closer to my goal… my impossible fairy tale ending. Pavel turned to me and gestured me forward. "Once we're in you have. The three of you have to go now so you make it back before morning. I was excited but also disgusted to feel this way. "Ok here is the drill." I said ready to exit the plane but he gripped my arm.I sighed.'' he said barely louder than a whisper. No one needs to know…your mother would kill me. ''Where you wanted to go Kazim." He said so frostily that I could have been iced on the spot. it was firm and still quite loud. The grim brothers! But I guess you didn't choose your guardians on their smile or cheery attitude and these two really look lethal.'' said Abe with a small smile playing on his lips The sun had just risen and it was not good for a Moroi to be out and about. After opening the plane door Mishka and Pavel exchanged quick words. Chapter 6: The plane trip took about 90 minutes and the whole way I couldn't believe I was about to see Victor. The flight was really awkward and mainly silent. "I'm not done Hathaway. ''Dress quickly. ''Do what?'' I asked still slow. ''What…Is everything ok?'' I asked worried.
"I wish I could say the same. I knew it sounded childish but it took all of my self control to not kick him in the back of the knee and make him fall. "It's a human jail!!" I said completely shocked. "Rosemarie Hathaway?!" He asked not able to conceal the surprise in his voice." he said clearly ignoring me. "Of course…it's not like you worry about anyone but yourself anyways." I said giving in. casually resting a hand on the wall." I retorted before cursing myself for not being able to keep my voice from shaking. "Who would ever think of looking for a Royal Moroi in a human jail?" He asked rhetorically." I said standing up straight and crossing my arms on my chest. "How come?" I tried." Victor replied with a nice smile as he started walking towards the glass wall." he pointed to the glass panel in the middle of the corridor. "Go now. "I'll stay beside the door. I could feel his eyes on my back as I slowly walked to meet my living nemesis. . Victor turned around quickly and started to laugh. "Well it's nice to have some visitors. I needed him on my side. the douchebag was really getting on my nerves." " Like I worry about Victor Dashkov." I bet you did you jackass!! I thought but just gritted my teeth looking at him thoughtfully. "She…She is doing alright. Done or not. "Yeah it is. and one of the people I needed the most as well… How ironic! When I finally saw him he had his back towards me." replied Pavel as we walked down the main corridor. He quietly closed the door and rested his back against it." he said not even bothering to turn around. "What's that supposed to mean? "I asked getting really angry now. "I always enjoyed your agreeable company. Victor narrowed his eyes slightly. "What a nice surprise. "Crystal. "Anyways. You'll be separated by a plastic panel but don't worry it's absolutely indestructible. here we are. The man I hated the most. He still had his silky black hair.talk to him. "So Dear Rose…How is Vasilisa doing?" He asked. happy or not we'll have to go since we'll have only 30 minutes before the change in the guards. "It's the isolation ward." He said pursing his lips. he was reading. Are we clear?" He said keeping his firm grip on my arm." he said as we reached a corridor in the basement. even if chatting with a freshly woken up grizzly bear seemed far more attractive. "The one and only." he said walking briskly in front of me." I barked getting out his grip. the disease hadn't claimed his body just yet. He was getting suspicious since he probably didn't expect me to answer. "Let's go." I snorted.
"So why would you need my brother that much Rose? I mean…" He shrugged." I snorted. he was a fantastic mentalist. making your own daughter turn Strigoi…you make me sick. Are you managing the spirit effects alright?" He asked and I could see the malevolent light in his eyes. I always had a soft spot for you…your protecting instinct." He said staring at me with his keen eyes probably trying to decipher my facial expression." "Robert? Why?! Everybody is looking for Robert these days."What can I do for you Rose? Are. "He has some information that I need. "You see I heard this rumor. "Maybe I could answer your question Rose…I'll help YOU! " he said pressing on the 'you' trying to make me feel like I was special. "Now we're talking." he said pointing at the folding chair that was against the corridor wall." He said and seemed rather pleased about that. I nodded." Said Victor and I could see his curiosity increasing by the second. he clearly understood that he had the power. "And you see well…Spirit does take a toll on people and my brother…my brother is not as sane as he once was." I admitted. "it has to be big for you to come here and I don't even want to know what you promised Abe Mazur. I quickly took it and sat in front of him as he pulled his own chair closer to the glass. I sighed with relief apparently he was still alive. you are an evil motherfucker!! Torturing Lissa." I said evasively. you know that already. that was already something. I was sure he could hear the despair in my voice. What is that saying?…" He said pretending to think while gently tapping his chin. "That's why I'm here. "I'm here to help…" He smiled." "I heard he is an expert on spirit and I really need his help. but I knew he didn't mean it at all. "I also know a lot about spirit. He did ask Strigoi Natalie to do her best to spare my life. but he didn't fool me. I had to be careful. But I just stared at him not trusting myself to speak. "A rumor that says your brother knew the way to reverse the Strigoi state." He said sounding saddened by the fact. "Maybe my methods were not the best but the goal was right." I added and I knew that even if I tried as hard as I possibly could. Dang!! "Is that so?" He said crossing his legs." He shook his head.' " I wanted to say Whatever freaking psycho. "No it's true. His face lit up." I said standing straight. "I always liked your honesty Rose. " 'All that is necessary for evil to succeed is that good men do nothing." And I knew that it was true in a twisted way. "I'm the one looking for your brother. I knew him too well by now." "Is that so?" Asked Victor chuckling. I tried to help you and you just pushed me away as if I was evil personified. "It's just spectacular. "I need you to tell me where I can find your brother Robert. "May I ask who told you that?" . "Please take a seat." I said resting my hands on my knees. he wanted me in his army..
"That's irrelevant." I said dismissively. "Is it true?" "Why is that so important Rose? I mean lets be honest it sounds pretty much like a fairy tale to me." He was literally marveling. "How important is it to you??" "I…very" I replied, somberly. He looked at me for a little while pondering. "Who did you loose to the dark side Rose?" "No one." I said trying my best to keep my face blank. "It has to be someone important…Maybe your mother or Vasilisa's little boyfriend?" He tapped his chin with his forefinger. "I mean for your boyfriend to follow you in that crazy and highly criminal adventure it has to be someone REALLY important." I simply shrugged. "Where is the boyfriend by the way?" He asked trying to peek down the side but he wasn't curious enough to stand so he could have an even better look. "You are legal now aren't you? And he was pretty crazily possessive with you." He chuckled. "Come on Guardian Belikov you can show yourself." Said Victor with laugher in his voice. "I know perfectly well that you wouldn't let your girlfriend face the evil traitor by herself...Come on!" "He…is not here." I whispered, acknowledging that took my breathe away. Victor frowned for a second, "Awww I see Rose. I'm sorry you two were really a match made it heaven." He shook his head with, what I presumed was, fake contrition. " 'Death is not the greatest loss in life . The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.'" Victor and his quotes! I thought exasperated but decided to play along. "So dear I love him that with him, All deaths I could endure. Without him, live no life." I recited, hoping I got it right but when I saw the genuine pleasure in Victor's face, I knew I hit it right. Victor was a sucker for the classics. "I'm going to help you Rose, you two have to be together…I always knew you were meant to be." He chuckled, "and to have you quote Shakespeare to me? it's more than love as far as you are concerned!" "So it's true then. We can reverse the Strigoi state?" I asked, my heart pounding in my chest so fast I could barely breathe. "I haven't seen it with my own eyes but Robert told me that many, so many, times and he has maybe a lot of flaws, but fortunately lying is not one of them." Added Victor with his huge grin. "What do you want from me?" I asked trying to hide my impatience. "Nothing, well maybe one or two healings but no… I'll TAKE you to Robert, you have my word." he said nonchalantly, like he was asking me for a piece of bread or something that's very easy to get. "Take me there…" I whispered. I expected him to ask me to get him out of jail to help me, it was the last card he had to play. He would have been just a fool not to try and I might just be crazy and desperate enough to agree. "Tell me something Rose, do they know why you are here?" Asked Victor resting his back on the chair, his eyes never leaving mine. "Do they even know you're here?" I just stared at him, face hard.
"Do your friends know you are battling because of Belikov, all the risks you are taking just for one man?" He asked again but I could see his eyes sparkle with anticipation. He already knew the answer. He laughed softly. "Well I guess I'm not the only one to have a secret agenda. You are ready to do a lot of things to attain your goal aren't you? Hiding, lying, threatening, maybe even a little torture too." I couldn't deny that, I did have fun torturing. Strigoi or not it was still wrong and I knew that at the time I just didn't care. I kept thinking whatever the means used, only the goal mattered. "Oh Rose I always knew you were special, worthy. You've got such an instinct, when you know deep down something is right you fight for it! You're ready to bind the fine line between what is legal and what is not." He said and it made me think of what my mother said about Abe. "We're a lot alike you and I." He added and it couldn't have hurt more if he stabbed me. "I'm NOTHING like you!" I couldn't help but growl. He chuckled. "Only time will tell." He said dismissively. "Anyways you have my conditions now, plus it's more a necessity that anything else really." He added mysteriously. "How come?" I asked taking the bait. "Robert won't talk to anyone but me." He said keeping his eyes on mine probably to show me he was speaking the truth. "Like I told you, he is not the man he used to be, he won't trust any of you." I sighed running my hands through my hair. I knew I couldn't trust that snake and I never intended to. But now it was clear I had to decide if I was going to help him break free and becoming a traitor. A traitor in the eyes of my whole world, bringing shame on my family and friends. I could just give up and wait for Dimitri to come to me and let it end by his death or mine. Maybe even both. "Don't look so tortured Rose, things are never as bad as we think they are." He said in a comforting tone. Victor trying to comfort me? Things REALLY were bad. "No you're right, sometimes they are worse." "Hathaway time to go." Said Pavel in an hard and commanding tone. "Not a fan it seems," Victor noted. I grimaced getting up. "Well when you make up your mind you know where to find me. I don't intend to go anywhere anytime soon." Victor commented with a grin. "Hathaway!" Repeated Pavel even harsher this time. "I'm coming guardian! Take a fucking valium." I snapped. "I missed your impetuosity Rose! It was so nice talking to you…I can't wait for us to meet again," he said in such a voice that it gave me the chills. I nodded curtly to Victor before rushing to meet a very mad Pavel. "Oh Rose to thank you here is a clue," Victor shouted just as I reached the door. "My brother is safe in the land of Kielland."
I didn't have a chance to hear if he added anything because Pavel closed the big soundproof door. The land of kielland? Or kielan? kelland? I thought as we walked hurriedly out of the prison. What did it even mean? "Hurry you'll think some other time!" Said Pavel gripping my wrist. I gasped. "Let go or I swear to god I'll break every single on of your fingers do you understand?" I snarled with my best death glare. One that I knew I inherited from Abe. I saw Pavel's jaw lock firmly but he let go of my arm. "You don't like me do you?" I asked already knowing the answer and not caring really. "I'm not here to like you," he said bluntly. "I'm here to do my job and bring you back safely to the academy." He added as we reached the main exit where Mishka was waiting. As we walked back to the plane I had the time to detail them. Mishka was probably in his early 30ies. He was not very tall, maybe 5'9 but pretty burly, actually very burly, with thick muscles. He had ginger hair freckled and very sharp yet warm blue eyes. Each time he looked at me I had a small stabbing pain in my chest because he was how I presumed Mason would look if he did manage to hit 30. Pavel couldn't be more different. He was very tall probably as tall as Dimitri 6'6 or 6'7 but much MUCH lankier. Well he was not as lanky as a Moroi in general but I knew a few Moroi that were a lot bigger than him, such as Abe and Adrian. To be fair those two were pretty much freaks of the Moroi world since they were really bigger than they should be. He had very short pale blond hair and as for his eyes well… I had no idea but it was maybe not such a bad thing, I was pretty sure they were not full of love and understanding as far as I was concerned. I settled in the back of the plane deciding to chill for the 90 minutes of the returning flight. I had a lot to decide and those decisions were going to be based on a lot of presumptions. I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. I could hear Pavel whisper in Russian to Mishka. I caught a couple of words even with my more than scattered knowledge of Russian, I clearly heard 'inconsiderate' and 'selfish' attached to my name. My eyes shot open, that was it! I was already mad enough . "Prasteete!"I said coldly standing up walking up to Pavel. Prasteete meant 'excuse me' in Russian. "If you've got something to say I'd rather you say it to my face," I said now standing only mere inches from him. Pavel looked up to me and I could see that he was gritting his teeth. "Come on guardian, it will be good for you, give it your best shot!" I said, taunting him. "It's not good to keep it all bottled up you know. Based on medical studies it can affect your libido." Mishka sent Pavel a warning glance which clearly meant 'don't go there, shut it!' "I won't tell anyone," I said to Mishka, "his job is safe. Come on Papav," I said even more defiantly now. Pavel jumped up from his seat like it burned him. "Oh little girl you don't want to know what I think!!" He said leaning in. I couldn't help to laugh at that. "Little girl? You are what…21? 22? Please!" I snorted, "and take off those glasses it's ridiculous." I replied, grabbing them and throwing them away.
"But just so you know the real Belikov would be so disappointed in you…" He said and it had the effect of a hard punch in my stomach. "You're a freak all the way aren't you?" I asked with a bitter smile. unique. "I was so wrong. "Don't kid yourself. so much for wanting to keep my self control. So Hathaway… Who are you going to condemn to this fate? Who loves you enough to fall down with you? The Moroi best friend? The Royal deeply in love with you? The newly found dad?? Tell me novice… Who? Who will it be?" He demanded. risked another persons life or reputation for something he felt he had to do. I heard Mishka tsk with disapproval in the background but neither of us acknowledged him. "No I won't 'go eat shit and die' but thanks. He was a lot stronger than I expected from his gangly frame. Pavel grabbed my shoulders hard and nudged me. When we were in Baia. it's just that people can find it a little…disturbing. honor. terribly selfish!" He pointed at me. Even when Mr. "You really want to know what I think?" He asked and it sounded like a threat but I couldn't imagine what he could say to hurt me more than I already was. brave. "You don't know me!" I snapped. now you are ready to put all the people who care about you in danger just to save him?" I looked at him lips pursed. and of that I am positive. "It's called Heterochromia. He was all about safety." he snorted. but I was mad and hurt. "You had so much potential and you throw it away You know deep down that this whole thing will end badly and the disgusting part is that you are going to take the people who love you down with you. and THAT's unforgivable and terribly. "What about you sooka??" He asked crossing his arms on his chest. "Oh calling me a bitch ?" I said shaking my head. I understood you. "And maybe I didn't know Belikov personally but I knew his reputation." In a normal condition I would have said his eyes were not disturbing." He shook his head with clear disgust. I would have said what I really thought being that they were beautiful. "Don't you EVER talk about Dimitri do you understand!!" I said shoving him hard. I intended to keep it shut and let him talk but I couldn't." He snorted. I knew the Russian insults pretty well. "But now. Mazur couldn't figure out why you were there I knew… I understood it was to take him down and I thought that you were a girl with so much honor. "I used to think you were a good person. "You don't even know the risks your father took by arranging this meeting but who cares right?? As long as you get what you want!" He added his eyes locked on mine. It would have been contrary to all he believed in and that you know Miss smartmouth! You are a dishonor to his memories and you are unworthy of your friends!" ." he said now actually hurting me he was squeezing so hard. "That's SOOO original Zhopa. and protection."I added shoving him again. inches from my face and I could see so much deception and anger in his eyes. you know that helping him escape will be considered as high treason punishable of life imprisonment. but when I finally met his eyes I couldn't help but huff. maybe because he was closer to the truth than I expected. He probably would have risked his life to keep a promise made to you but he would never. "I don't wear my sunglasses to look badass like you probably think.Pavel balled his hands into fits and I thought he was about to hit me. "You don't know him!! Nobody knew him like I did!! Kooshite govno ee oomeeite." he said coldly because I kept staring at his one icy blue eye and one that was so deep brown it looked almost black.
"Johnnie. I looked around curiously. When we landed the sun was still up." said Mishka pointing to the blue curtain at the end of the plane. it would be for at least two hours before the academy started to move around…3 hours before my training." He said with so much kindness that it actually aggravated the throbbing pain in my chest. I could feel that my eyes started to fill up with tears and I didn't want to give Pavel the satisfaction of seeing me cry. "Is there a bathroom on this plane?" I asked looking away. "Just one more thing Hathaway." I said to the bottles. Jack Daniel's. I drank the four bottles one after the other knowing that I had two more of each in my pockets. make me numb for a little while. William Lawson's. and Jim Beam bottles . and Jim. I set four little bottles on the lavabo. I really missed you guys!!" I said looking at the Johnnie Walker. I also took some mints that were in a glass ball for my breathe I knew it was completely stupid and irresponsible to do this but at this point I was already at… I couldn't be more disappointing anyways. people we never want to leave behind. Abe was maybe Muslim (I didn't know for sure yet) but that fridge was full of miniatures…. But I wouldn't cry in front of him. making me smile. He put them back and went to sit beside Mishka again. across from the toilet there were some metallic drawers and a fridge. "Hello my dear old friends. "Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. But keep in mind that letting go isn't the end of the world. But I was still stuck with 30 more minutes with Pavel and then I had to get through the day with all this guilt and pain…. "Feeling better?" I added trying my best to look only furious. I just hope you realize that before it's to late and you make mistakes that you will regret till your last breath." "Monkey bars? Really??" I asked wanting to jump on him and punch him unconscious. "What my idiotic colleague means is that there are things that we never want to let go of. I wouldn't show him how badly it hurt…No! Never! "I do. Was it a good way to deal with my problems? Absolutely not because they would still be here tomorrow along with a killer headache. Alleluia!! I took some of them and stuffed them in my pocket.I sighed."Are you done?" I said roughly getting out of his grip. As soon as I pulled back the curtain I let the tears fall quietly. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward. When I came out I sat on the last seat pretending to look at the landscaping. "Behind the curtain. I started to suck on the mint as the alcohols warmth was filling me. I opened the fridge and smiled widely. a way to make me feel better. I took some more for my little trip to the toilet. actually talking to me for the first time. But deep down I felt like dying. in the place where my heart used to be. Jack." he said not even bothering to look at me. William." he said walking passed me to retrieve his glasses from the floor. . That was a sign. it's the beginning of a new life. Mishka sighed heavily throwing a reproving look to Pavel before concentrating on me.
"You don't want me?" I asked him. He was my Moroi knight but deep down I would always be longing for my Dhampir prince. I groaned with frustration. I drank a fourth bottle on my way to the guest dorms and sucked on a mint before entering it. I knocked at the door twice. "Maybe not. His lips were warm and soft against mine. feeling both confused and hurt." I said reaching for him." he caught my hands before I could touch his torso. Adrian would help me feel good. "There is not much that a French kiss can hide my little dhampir. "Not like that…" He said breathlessly. He was only wearing black Pj bottoms. "You know you are just adorable when you wake up. "I never wanted anyone as much as I want you." "So?" I replied. ."You should go and sleep a bit." I nodded and as they took the direction to the lower campus where the guardian dorms were." "I'm not drunk!" I said trying my best to sound offended.. Adrian opened it. Very good. "I'm here to be claimed. "not when you're drunk." He retorted like he never heard something stupider in his entire life. "What do you need?" He asked nicely while closing the door. and his eyes widened when he saw me standing here. the prince I needed to save. Almost as soon as we deepened the kiss he gently pushed me away breaking it altogether. I didn't deal very well with rejection. "Of course I do Rose. his hard body radiating with want made me shiver." said Mishka.." I said putting a hand at the back of his neck pulling him to me so I could kiss him passionately. I discreetly took off through the trees and drank three more bottles while sitting under a centennial tree." He shook his head. "Not while you're like that.." he stuttered letting me in." I blushed slightly. opening my arms. "Well I'm not that drunk! It won't be like you're taking advantage of me I promise. "But you are clearly drunk enough to regret it when you wake up. I started to laugh it was clear where I needed to go. I walked close to the wall concentrating on the board to keep walking in a straight line. bare chest. "Rose? Is everything ok?" He asked worried." I said smiling widely. Chapter 7: At first Adrian kissed me back and it felt good. "Of… Of course. his face full of sleep. "You.Irresistible. Adrian was still looking at me with a sad smile. "May I come in?" I asked turning my man eating smile on this time." I said with a grin. better than I thought it would. "it's going to be a long day.." He added keeping my hands in his.
"I told you I'm not drunk!" I said as I raised my arms in exasperation." he whispered against my forehead." I got out of his arms feeling slightly angry." Adrian eyes were sad now. Consider me warned. let's get you to bed. I took a small bottle from my pocket. When I felt an arm wrap tightly around my waist to steady me. "Wow… you are drunker than I thought you were. "Not so long ago I wouldn't have thought about it twice but things changed…you changed them. "Your prince?" Asked Adrian with a small smile playing on his lips. "8 and three quarters of that one." he said as he started leading me to his room. "It really does. I shook my head. but he kept quiet and we continued our way to his bedroom." I said my voice cracking." "Who do you need to save Rose?" He asked with real concern. I felt slightly relieved. "But to save him I have to become a traitor." I snorted still looking away. renounce to everything I believe in. which was a stupid idea because I already had trouble keeping myself balanced. keeping his hold around my waist." I could feel the tears starting to fall down my cheeks. "Come on you drunk. "You don't understand. "No. "Being a good guy sucks!" I said childishly walking into the room. I presumed that he liked to have me against him. "He is dead Rose. "My prince!" I stated like if it was evident. "Ummmm 8?" I tapped my chin. "I need to save him." he said setting the bottle on the table. He even seemed to sound a little worried. "What don't I understand Rose?" He asked softly removing some rebellious hair from my face. "I need to save Dimitri. Adrian stopped walking keeping me against him."So what? It will be my mistake." I saw Adrian recoil slightly and wince like I had just punched him. "I…please understand. He took my jacket off. "no wait!" I pointed to the little bottle he was holding. "Dimitri." "9 bottles?" He asked rhetorically. "And who is that lucky bastard?" He asked teasingly. "How many of those did you have?" Adrian asked seriously. "I don't want you to look back on something we did together and see it as a mistake." I shrugged and looked up at his face that was torn with indecision. maybe as much as I liked being against him. "Sure you aren't. I stood on my toes trying to attain his lips but he just leaned down to kiss my forehead." I said looking at him helplessly. I only had time to get half way through it when Adrian ripped it away from me. "I have to save him." Adrian responded. Adrian gently help me to sit on his bed but his face was somber now. you killed him remember?" ." I said in a tearless sob." he agreed. I could already see my head banging the side of the coffee table.
I was not sure I heard it right or if it was a dream because I was already half way gone but I thought he said something like. "The princess can't go on with her life knowing that her prince could return to her and finally give her the 'happily ever after' she is longing for. Well the headache attested to a hangover. I could see pain and deception in his eyes. I heard voices coming from the other room. breaking his heart." Adrian said." "Rose…Rose focus for a minute." said a deep man voice. I closed my eyes. not knowing where I was." . He helped me down on his bed and carefully tucked me in." he said nicely yet his voice sounded so cold." I said in a hushed tone. Okay. "My heart is breaking because I realized that I have to let go the only person I ever loved. "Why are you sad?" I mumbled already drifting into sleep.Adrian kneeled down and took my shoes off. it's none of my business." Adrian pursed his lips so strongly that they turned white." Said Adrian with urgency and for the first time since I met him I could see pure fear in his eyes." I said like he was an idiot. like I was letting him down. "You're taking good care of her. I was in Adrian's bed…another clue. so distant. Adrian sighed heavily. that was already something. "No he is not dead." Adrian replied. "And now I even have to break Victor Dashkov out of jail to save him. I instinctively patted the other side. "Belikov is alive?" He tried. apparently angry. "Drink please. Victor knows how to save my prince he told me last night. "Can you believe that only the bad wizard knows the way to break the spell and give me back my prince." I think he kissed my forehead and then I was asleep. "She is still sleeping. "You know what forget it. I woke up with a killer headache. it was empty and cold and I patted myself. I sure knew that this big comfy bed wasn't mine. not anymore. I looked around slightly panicked. I still had my shirt and jeans on. I nodded crying even harder now. Although. The worst feeling in the world is giving all the love you have and knowing it'll never be returned. "You saw Victor? Where??" "In jail! I went to a secret meeting. Adrian put my shoes aside and looked at me with incredulity. I failed and now he is coming here to take me or to kill me. "What's that supposed to mean?" Asked Abe a lot colder now. "Sleep now. Cause you see…" I brought my hand to his cheek. Abe? I thought. "Someone has to. He slipped away from my touch and took the bottle of water on his night stand. I closed my eyes again and sighed with relief trying to remember what the heck happened to me." he whispered and there was pain both in his eyes and his voice.
I frowned slightly but decided to ignore his attitude." he said opening the drawer of his night stand. "Thank you." he said dismissively and started to load his suitcase. About two minutes later the bedroom door opened slightly and Adrian peeked in." "But…But what about Lissa and Spirit?" I asked but I just realized that I didn't want him to leave me. "Yeah but she is fine now. The pretenses are never good." He said continuing to pack his things into his suitcase. He snorted and it sounded so bitter coming from him. "Are you alright?" I asked sitting up taking the tablets. and that she spent the night vomiting which is actually not so wrong. "Oh you're awake." I said reaching for his hand as he let go of me." Said Adrian and for once there was no humor in his voice. Adrian looked at me and sighed." He added putting two Tylenol in my hand. walking to me to check my temperature with the back of his hand. Adrian sighed with exasperation as he reached to steady me." "The drunken Rose?" Asked Abe and I could hear laugher in his voice. He didn't smile at me or anything he looked so…distant and oddly enough it made my heart ache. "Here take that with this full glass of water. What the heck did I say to him? I wondered but my brain was still slow. she is sleeping soundly." he commented." Said Adrian and he seemed annoyed and that shocked me. "What about us? Our friendship?" I asked trying the best to contain my tears." He sighed again "That is a part of her I really didn't need to meet. . "Please you really don't need to keep it up. "You'll figure out eventually that what Rose wants and what is good for her are sometime two totally opposite things. "I think it's time for me to go. "She will be moving to the Court in 2 months…We'll restart our work then." "She's been sick?" Abe asked with concern. "Anyways don't you worry they all believed me when I explained she had dinner with me in my room and ate something apparently not so good. "Hey…" I said with a sleepy voice. I could hear a underlying despair I couldn't understand. "Adrian please talk to me.Not anymore? What is happening?? I thought my heart pounding in my chest. Apparently whiskey is not her best friend. I almost chocked drinking when I saw him take his suitcase out of his wardrobe. I meant vomiting 'like-in-the-exorcist' Rose." Added Adrian matter of factly." Abe replied and I could hear the real gratitude in voice. "What time is it?" "Classes are about to end. "Don't worry I'll take care of her and I'll give you a call as soon as she is ready to go. "What's going on?" I asked jumping out of bed and apparently my equilibrium sucked because I almost fell. "No I knew drunken Rose. go back to Court.
" If you knew all my dark secrets. "You wouldn't like the real Rose anyways.wanting to kick myself. I could see my bruised neck in the mirror again. ever. "I can't do that." He closed his eyes. "Oh come on Rose." . "Talk to me please. I…I have no idea what happened last night and if I did anything to hurt you I'm sorry…really I…" I took a deep. breath." "How much did I say?" I asked still sitting on the suitcase. "If you didn't want to hurt me you should have told me that Belikov was still alive and that you were still holding on." Adrian stopped in front of me with a pile of clothes. "Doomed?" I asked because it was the only word that lingered in my mind. "If he is coming for you and if you're going to become an outlaw they have the right to know. "I don't want to hurt you. "But I won't stay here and watch you destroy yourself and everything good in your life for something that was doomed since day one." I said softly. almost begging him to bite me." I got off the suitcase in defeat. "But what are you talking about?!" I asked annoyed now. I thought about how I degraded myself being Dimitri's blood whore. "I won't make the same mistake Rose… I won't insist on a road that will end up hurting me…hurting us." he replied and the pain in his voice made me wince." He added flush with anger. "I said I'll stand by you but not while you destroy yourself I can't do that!" . "Everything was against you two from day one but you were so gone for him you didn't see it!! Think Rose what did this relationship bring into your lives except heartache??!!" I opened my mouth to answer but closed it again. Yeah. "I know all your dark secrets and I still love you just the same. closed it." "Don't try to put that one on me!" He shouted." He said with his voice full of sorrow. it's maybe better this way." He shook his head "I know you didn't do it voluntarily but it hurt just the same." Ok he knows everything I thought .I walked briskly to it." I said sincerely taking a step toward him but he instinctively took a step back." He said threateningly. "No I do believe you. "You seem to ponder that. I turned around briskly looking at him completely surprised because I really didn't expect such a radical switch in his emotions. shaky. "You don't believe me?" He asked crossing his arms over his chest." said Adrian as he stopped packing his suitcase." he said putting the pile of clothes beside his suitcase. He looked at me silently for minute before sighing in resignation. and sat on it. "I just don't think you know my darker secret. Did I say all that? I thought astonished. "Oh yea you talk when you're drunk and every word you said last night hurt me. I was sure he wouldn't 'love' me anymore after that. I was not even sure he realized that he told me that he loved me. "Much more than I wanted to know but if you don't talk to the others about it I will.
" said Abe soothingly. as far as Adrian was concerned that is. "you don't have to tell them everything but you need to tell them the basics. I took a the quickest cold shower in history just to try and put my brain in the right place. I replied in a low voice and I realized how much I would actually miss him. maybe I could learn to love him." I closed my eyes… He knew. He was honest.. "You see people think it's holding on that makes you stronger. I was up there maybe half an hour ago." He added looking away." He said before leaving the room and closing the door quietly behind him." He gave me a sad smile. "No! Never! And that's the truth! You are still the Rose I met and always will be!" I looked at him in a whole different light. It was clearly a part of me I didn't want him to see. There was a very quiet conversation going on. She was getting better. "She is fine. the one when you were wearing that little blue summer dress. almost whispering but the voices were unmistakable. He closed his suitcases and took it off the bed. I. because as crazy as it sounded. I wanted him to stay…I needed him to stay. "I'm going to miss you". I could see that in his eyes. maybe if I tried harder." He shrugged slightly." . I smelled my shirt and it did have the faint odor of vomit and alcohol. "I can't let history repeat itself. Take a shower and chill out a bit. "I've seen what holding on to the wrong person could do. I know what you did and do you think it changed anything? Do you think it made me care about you any less? Respect you any less?" He shook his head. "So if you love me so much…Why are you walking away?" I questioned. I knew it was wrong to listen but I just couldn't help myself." he said pointing to me." I nodded. resigned. Adrian was residing on the fourth floor of the guest area and I decided to take the stairs down. You know when I walked into your dreams. In the process removing the not so nice odor. Lissa brought you some clothes. I was on my way to the second floor when I froze midcourse. "And then I'll take the plane back to Court." I said in a breathe. I groaned. "I saw your neck Rose. "Certainly not as much as I'll miss you.He bit his bottom lip for a little while like he was trying to decide what to add. I'm going to arrange a little meeting with the others so you can tell them. and that sapphire necklace… your aura was all wrong then. "I know what you are ashamed of Rose and there is no reason to be. I had the childish impulse to hide it somewhere but I knew it would not be enough to make him stay. He cared about me enough to disregard that. I walked to the fresh pile of clothes and almost stumbled on his suitcase. But sometime it's letting go. "I…" My mother sighed. at least I thought so. "I just don't know what got into her.. I was rather pleased I didn't remember the vomiting part since I'm sure it was pretty embarrassing. my voice hoarse. Adrian walked in the small living area and set his suitcase down. It was my mother and Abe. "Please don't.
I thought wincing quietly going down two more steps as they dropped their already barely audible voices. The last thing I heard was my mother saying. "Well you don't know her Abe. My mom was not kidding when she said that Abe wanted to assume." "What are you doing here?" "I told you I came to see Rose. I mean it was almost two decades ago and a Dhampir/Moroi marriage would have been such a scandal." I could hear the sincerity in her voice. . especially ours. "You didn't leave me the choice anyways did you?! I asked you to marry me but you said no! You are the one who decided to call it quits! You decided for us not me. "Indigestion? Right! I know my daughter and she has a strong stomach! And I know you well. "And you agreed with me then. I was getting uncomfortable and decided I needed to go now." "Are you blaming me?" He asked and I could hear the hurt in his voice. Letting you go was my way of saying I love you. "Rose is…" I could hear my mother sharp intake of breath. you are an astonishing liar but you never fooled me. I deserve a place in her life." I had barely closed the door behind me when my phoned beeped in my pocket. "It's because I never really tried to fool you." He added and I could hear the love in his voice.'' My mother snorted. I started to go up the stairs. she is my daughter after all…My only child. I'm sorry but I can't help to connect the events." My mother whispered harshly. We didn't have the lives for that and you know it. It made me special. She stopped talking for a minute. I helped you get her back. Be careful Abe…Angry Janine can be dangerous. "Well you came here yesterday unannounced and today she is so drunk she passed out in Ivashkov's room. about being his only child. "I'm sorry I didn't mean that. "You are her genitor! It doesn't make you her father." I was shocked. Talk about timing! It was a brief text from Adrian saying that they were all waiting for me in Christian's room. "That was uncalled for." He said his voice cold too. slightly pleased. well as angrily as a whisper could convey. very well." They stayed silent for a minute or two. I didn't really realize it before but I felt relieved. nothing to worry about." She said and her tone was getting cold. I felt bad." "But I'm her father!" Abe snapped angrily. She looks all tough and brave but she is much more sensitive than she lets people see. "I didn't leave because I didn't love you anymore."It's just an indigestion meleğim. "You knew as well as I did that it was better for Rose." added my mother finally. now I was the cause of a fight between my mom and dad…I really was bad luck." "I know but letting you go didn't mean that I stopped loving you or that I didn't love the little baby you were carrying.
They were hard with a small 'I-told-you-so' in depth of them. it was almost overwhelming. Lissa looked more and more incredulous. bedtime stories just like the story that say dhampirs actually could have babies together with the right spell but that Moroi kept the secret because they were scared dhampirs would not protect them anymore. "I know" I whispered mostly keeping my eyes on Lissa who seemed to be frozen on the spot. Strigoi Dimitri was unable to love and I would have seen the difference.There was no turning back now. "I guess there is silver stakes but you know…that's pretty slim though. "What then?" Tried Christian as he probably realized I was lost in my thought. She felt bad I failed once more. I'd rather kept the memory of our perfect first time burned in my mind forever. I knew she was the only one who would never judge me. Christian instinctively reached for my hand and held it tightly between his. It would have been based on his basic need and want. "You know how much I want to believe it's possible…but it's just folklore. the whole Victor issue." He sighed and squeezed my hand. I was probably trying to convince them as much as I was trying to convince myself." I met Adrian's eyes. "Rose come on you can't honestly consider that!" Said Christian coming to sit beside me on the desk. I bit my bottom lip thinking on how I could mention the ring without sounding completely mental or cheap. It startled me and I could feel a faint wave of jealousy coming from Lissa. She thought deep down that she could not survive me becoming one of them…her enemy. The only thing I left out what my visit to prison last night and Adrian didn't intervene so I guessed he agreed with me that it was not a necessity at this point. "I know how bad you want it to be true but it's not. "Well I spent about 10 days with him and no matter how close of Di…mitri he could be there was this coldness to him that was unmistakable of what he became" I said having some trouble to breathe. "What do you mean?" asked Lissa finally getting out of her torpor. I just told them everything about what Oksana told me." He snorted. She was not jealous of the fact that we might become an item because she knew that it was out of the question for both of . she was scared I would run off again but she was even more frightened by the thought that Dimitri could show up and turn me into a Strigoi. "But I witnessed it first hand!" I said in a last plea. "If it ever happened don't you think it would have been at least heard of? In like centuries." I said concentrating my attention on Lissa." Tried Eddie grimacing. I shook my head trying to get rid of the stupid flashes in my head. "No I'm not talking about silver stakes. I just hoped I'd have some friends left when I get done. There were so many emotions coming out of her. Chapter 8: "I'm sorry Rose but do you know how crazy that sounds?!" Asked Christian after a silence that seemed to last forever. at least I hoped so. the stake and Dimitri's note. I still remembered our pretty heated make out sessions when the only thing I wanted was for him to make love to me but it was maybe a good thing…no! it was surely good thing that he refused to do it as it wouldn't have been like the first time. "You see while I was…kidnapped" I said the last word not able to help the faint blush to gain my cheeks because even if I was high with Strigoi endorphins most of the time. filled with love and mutual trust.
"Oh you know the ring" said Lissa bringing me back to reality. The guys waived at him before concentrating on the training conversation again. Destroying my life. Christian let go of my hand and Eddie stood up and started to talk to him about Christian's training sessions. I didn't know why but I was on the brink of crying." She said to him. things I thought I'd never do." Lissa shrugged slightly. I looked at the four of them and sighed in defeat. I was the only one able to read through his pretence and that smile didn't reach his eyes. "You take care ok?" I asked looking deep into his eyes trying to show him how much I'd miss him." I said quickly glancing at Adrian and I felt guilty. "But you see as we were chatting once. a feeling that she would never understand. is still in him. heard it in his voice. my future was one thing…I could live with that but destroying theirs? Putting their lives in danger? No that I couldn't. "Well guys it's time for me to go" said Adrian already at the door." He said with a small smile full of sorrow. "You bet" he said with his usual playful grin but he couldn't fool me. I already lost Adrian now and it hurt bad. believe it with all her heart as she wanted nothing more than see me happy and it almost made me cry. as he said I knew him better than anyone else. Maybe Abe was right. "Ditto." I started to say but I stopped when I saw a flash of pure fury in Adrian's eyes. I mean…It's possible that the topic triggered a part of him that was. No. I could not bare it and as mad as I was against Pavel he was right too. It was like my encounter with Dimitri didn't make me stronger as I thought it would but as far as my heart was concerned I actually felt weaker. "Well as soon as he touched that ring. kept it in his hand well…I swear I saw the longing and warmth in his eyes. maybe I needed to let that story in fairy tale land and concentrate on what was good in my life. Maybe it was because I finally saw first hand what kind of crazy terrible things I was ready to do on the name of love. what was the reason of his hasty departure but she didn't seem to think much of it. "I think I got it but… but I wonder if your friend Oksana wouldn't mind just listen to me about it because I want to be sure I got it right before giving it to you…We never know" she said grimacing. How strange was that? "Maybe…Maybe I was the subject matter. he idly reached for my ring on the night stand. I could never take one of them down in my fall. "I just…I just wanted to believe it so much. She wanted to believe it. uneasiness on Eddies' face and Lissa's wonder.us. They probably thought I slept with Strigoi Dimitri. I couldn't lose anymore of my friends. "I'll see you soon. Lissa nodded I didn't know what he told them." "I know…We know" said Lissa smiling but I could feel her heart break for me she desperately wanted to change subject. I just decided to ignore their assumptions as I effectively did far worse than that. It never happened but it was not for lack of trying on my part. . I shook my head. But she felt terrible guilty to feel jealous of a connection that had been created over loss and pain. I forced a small smile "yeah you're probably right" I finally conceded. He was not my Dimitri exactly but he was close to it…so close it hurt. she was somehow shamefully jealous that we were sharing something special.
I knew that Oksana would be pleased to talk to Lissa and she even gave me her number in case any of us wanted to talk to her." "Really?" She asked and her exhilaration increased by the second. I love torturing kids…" he said with an evil laugh. "Come on you could do worse!! I'm a good catch. I did my best to hide my smile. Note to self. How could I even go on without them? They were my family as much as my mother and father. "I give you a free card. They were my brothers and sister. I took my cell out of my pocket and scribbled Oksana number on a piece of paper I took from one of Christian's notebook. "Good" said Christian quickly glancing at the clock." Asked Christian." I said with a smile but it was slightly forced as I didn't know what to except. "You go girl!" I said feeling like a full force dork to have said something like that. "I'll see you for dinner guys" she said almost running out making me laugh. "When do you think I could call her?" Asked Lissa and I could feel her excitation." I replied mimicking his tone. he was always brutally honest. "You can call her now you know it's early afternoon there." "Have fun Castille. . I shook my head genuinely smiling now. "You're going to pay for that right?" He asked teasing when he heard the scratching sound of the paper being ripped. not taking gloves. Christian Ozera could be mysterious but the small sidelong glances every 5 seconds kind of gave him away. "Ummmm no thanks" He said grimacing. "What's up with her?" Asked Christian apparently quite pleased to see her that enthusiastic. "I'll see you later Hathaway.I chuckled. never used the 'you-go-girl' expression ever again. That was what I liked about him. it helped her deal with the whole Christian issue and that was good to take. "Yeah we wouldn't me turning into a whimper would we?" I asked teasing." I said winking. Christian and I walked out slowly. I knew he wanted to say something but he just didn't know how to approach the subject. "Well not that I want to kick you out Rose but…my students are waiting for me." "Uh? Oh!! Yeah sorry!" I chuckled "I forgot. "Yep. you can make a pass on Eddie. I was actually happy that Lissa concentrated on her magic for now. I'm already so close to it I added to myself." Lissa burst into laugher taking the piece of paper from my hand. "What had happened between you and Adrian?" Asked Christian finally. "Come on buddy." Said Eddie pretending to be offended. "Long story but I'm pretty sure we'll hear it at dinner." "Eddie can you go meet them first and show them some moves I'll be over in 5 minutes. "Fine!" I said with overplayed exasperation. let it out.
opening it fully again. I ran so fast that I had trouble breathing as I made it to the runway I could see that the plane was ready to go and the stewardess was about to close the door. "We'll talk later" said Christian nudging me." "But I know you care about him Rose" said Christian nicely "and…well letting go is one thing but the way we let go is what matters." I said dismissively. believe me. "I…" I started." Said Christian pursing his lips. "Rose?!" Asked Adrian incredulous getting off his seat looking at me as if I had 2 heads. I didn't even notice walking beside him that we walked in the opposite direction of Christian's training and almost reached the end of campus. I barely made it and jumped to catch the door. "I see…. The Moroi woman saw me but decided to ignore me." I looked at him astonished." He give me a small smile. Christian looked at his watch. "Can you asked the mentally challenged deaf chica to give us 5 minutes?" I asked finally once I could breath more or less normally. explain yourself or you'll regret it. my crazy side always made him laugh. "No you still have 10 minutes and the runway is this way" he said pointing ahead. "It will be better for your peace of mind and his too. "Well who can blame him?" He added shrugging. "Wait!!" I shouted running even faster or at least trying to. He just nodded her out. what you think exactly . "Uh? I thought you would lynch him. "I owe him that much. Christian shrugged again. "He decided to let go. . He has every right to move on and he is right we shouldn't let the past repeat itself. love someone else. I raised my finger asking a second trying to catch my breath. "You think he actually loves me?" "Don't you?" Asked Christian raising one eyebrow. "The hardest thing to do is watch the one you love. Adrian couldn't stop his smile to grow bigger. I could see that as hard as he tried he couldn't help to smile." "Thank you" I said starting to run as fast as I could to the runway hoping that his plane would not leave early. She glared at me while leaving the room. to move on and I think it's better for him." "He is gone now… It's too late anyways." I said starting to regret the fact that I let him walk away without a word." I said knowing how Christian loved to pick on Adrian. "Go now. You should tell him how you feel."He didn't take the 'Dimitri's still being around and me trying to save him' as well as you guys did" I said evasively. "Hey Idiot what part of 'wait' don't you understand?!" I said breathless glaring at her while getting on the plane.
I looked at him while he poured himself another one. "I needed to talk to you before you left. Maybe. I couldn't help to grin.. looking at the ice cubes rolling in his glass. "But you are not doing anything wrong. of course you are right. "You said it all but I didn't get the chance to speak. "I see" said Adrian playing with his glass of scotch. Adrian threw me a small bottle of water rolling his eyes. Adrian head shot up looking at me surprised. "I know you…I know you feel bad for leaving. what you should do… what I should have done…What…What he should have done" I finally admitted out loud. "Because you are right." "What are you going to do now?" he asked with clear worry in his voice. "I know I didn't have time to cause irreparable damage to you and I feel grateful for that. I knew Adrian inside out and he was always keeping his word. "And I'll be happy for you. It's just enough to make us suffer and…" I took a deep breath as I could feel the tears starting to spring in my eyes. like you are breaking a promise" I said cocking my head to the side. "No it's ok! I swear I'm almost done now. You are doing what is best. maybe it's just because if I let go I'll take the time to think and I'll realize all the mistakes I made. emptying it."Look at me like that once more and you won't look at anyone else anytime soon do you copy that?" I asked with a threatening tone. a lot more than I want to but I know it's not enough. Adrian shrugged slightly concentrating on his glass again. "I'm sorry… truly sorry" I said looking away too now. I gave him a sad smile again." Adrian opened his mouth to say something but I begged him with my eyes not to and he closed it with a sigh of resignation. "It hurts me to hurt you because the truth is that I care about you…of course I do! I care about you a lot more than I should. She quickly looked down rushing out in the other room. truly happy. "I think everything has been said" he replied sitting back. I'm stuck in the moment and I can't get out and… and I'm battling with some imaginary windmill but I cannot win. they were darker now and he was trying to read through me. "Avery was not---" I stopped him raising my hand. I know you will be able to move on…" I gave him a small smile "you already did start while I was away with Avery and…" Adrian blushed slightly. "I guess that's. I drank eagerly." I looked up and met his sharp eyes." I said serious now.." I said with a humorless laugh. "What do you want Rose?" He asked so distant that it wiped my smile away. "I think you letting go is the best decision you could have taken. Don't worry I'll make it quick" I said playing with the bottle as I was nervous. . I realized I meant every word. If she didn't turn out to be a totally crazy-psycho bitch you would have dated her and it would have been all good. "And I know… I know you'll meet a nice girl very soon and she is going to make you very very happy" I said not able to stop my voice from breaking." I meant it. that's all.
"I think I'll try to stop fighting battles I can't win but I'll face it all and it will end soon" I smiled "by his death." "Yeah. I did find another candy bar and almost squealed with happiness. healing my body and marks of shame without judging. "That was my goodbye.. so I ran there to meet with her. "I thought you left?" Asked Lissa surprised. Take care and be happy. I leaned down even more and kissed him softly." I said before rushing out of the plane not waiting for his reaction. She only had kindness in her eyes. . "I talked with Oksana. almost carefully as if he was breakable. "What do you want…When the woman is starving she is staving" I said mouth full and it was pretty much a miracle that she actually understood. I was pretty sure I heard him shout my name but I was already far. I could see he was scared for me. mine or maybe both. I quickly scanned Lissa's mind and located her in her room. "You surely can understand why she is reluctant to come here. She seemed…I don't know" Lissa shrugged. "I invited her to come here for a little while you know. a dhampir 12 years older than her" I added uncomfortable to talk about someone else's love life especially where age difference was involved. I walked to him and leaned down resting my shaking hands on each side of his face.Yes she is" I said remembering how she took care of me back in Novosibirsk.. I ate it in 3 bites and started to roam around the room for some more treats to eat. "They can be so old fashioned sometimes" she said and I understood she talked about me and Dimitri as well as her and Christian. Lissa eyes widened with surprised but she didn't say anything." "Yeah I really do" said Lissa with a small laugh. He kissed me back just as softly as I did. "See I'm not drunk and I still enjoyed it" I whispered against his lips. I looked deep into his eyes and did something I didn't plan to do. "Rose!" I heard Adrian call just before entering the commons. "You see well she is married with a dhampir." Adrian looked at me with begging eyes." I grimaced slightly. "Like she really wanted to come but also was slightly reluctant. "So you see… They settled in the middle of nowhere. "Really Rose? Dinner is in 15 minutes. for the spirit study.I shrugged dismissively. "Uh huh…" she shook her head. I was chewing on half of it when Lissa hanged up. in a town where nobody would judge them. She opened the door while still on the phone and the mars bar I saw on her desk made my stomach growl and I almost jumped on it as a staving predator. I'm confusing you right?" "No not really" I said as we left her room to go to the commons. "Oh here!" she said giving me the ring. Lissa and I turned around simultaneously. She is so sweet by the way." She said chuckling.
" I shook my head. It hurt me much more than I would have expected or wanted it to. I will get my redemption by granting Dimitri with his. "But you said I was right. "There is a difference between dying for something you consider right or dying by pure stupidity." Said Lissa almost running away. I thought I did a good thing by letting him go without guilt and he seemed mad. "What a stupid fool! He taught me about life. to some level. "He taught me everything. love. he made me who I am. "You had NO right to do that!" He said harshly pointing at me. mad or worried. "It was completely insane to rush into that. Adrian looked at me thoughtful for a long moment. "I mean yeah I liked her to some extent but still…that's harsh! She was never you for me and you know it!" "I didn't throw Avery to your face!" I snapped and I was doing that. "I was just telling you that you already started to lose your interest in me when I was away and it was the smartest move and I know you're going to find the perfect woman soon that's all. "What?! Do what?!" I asked completely lost." I said simply." Was it really? I couldn't help to add to myself. And if you can't understand that well…you are not the man I thought you were. "When he brought us back from Portland I thought I knew it all…" I shook my head and let out a humorless laugh. "And throwing Avery to the face?!" He continued. how courage was not the absence of fear. As soon as we made it about 50 yards into the small forest Adrian let go on my wrist and twirled around to face me." I smiled fondly remembering. He…He showed me what real bravery was. I owe him that much. It was not right. "I…" I started when Adrian reached for my wrist and led me to a quieter area without a word. And that as tough as you seem to be." I added quietly. nobody is invulnerable. only wonder. as I did feel tremendously jealous of her when he showed her this serious interest. and I'm the one who has to do it. She could feel the tension and wanted to escape…Traitor. honor and duty."Well… My flight got delayed because of some storm we REALLY didn't see coming" he said trying to sound detached but I knew I was the 'storm. By healing him or killing him but something has to be done. how I couldn't always be right. "So explain to me Rose please…Explain me what did he do that's worth giving your life for his soul?" He asked and I didn't hear judgment or even sarcasm in his voice." "Okay I'll see you guys later. "But you also have to understand that." . And…" I took a deep breath leaning against a tree. at the end of the day. "I mean really you thought you could come in the plane kiss me.' "Rose I need to have a word with you. "I didn't want us to part like that. "He taught me that perfection didn't exist and that we just needed to be the best we could. tell me you cared about me and 'free me'" he said with quoting fingers "and you really thought I would let it slide?" "Well yeah" I said looking around as he was talking a bit too loud for my liking. What did you mean by that?" He asked calmer apparently deciding to drop the Avery subject for now. almost impossible plan with so many variables. he then ran his hands in his hair as he did every time he was upset. I could have stopped him easily but I knew that public would not stop him from making a scene if he really wanted to make one and his face right now didn't predict anything good so somewhere quiet seemed the best. not after everything we've been through".
It was what he valued the most. "Dimitri…Dimitri lent me his strength when I needed it and I lent him mine. I told him to leave with Tasha for that reason. I was his Dimitri? Really? No I couldn't be!! He sighed "I shouldn't have said that" he said and I could see he was cursing himself." Adrian nodded looking down putting his hands in his pockets.for me. "Always. It was. "To help you understand I guess you can say that you are. but in the 6 months I've known you. like he knew I would take it badly." He said with a small smile. "I promise" I said looking up. Be safe…. my 'Dimitri'. even if it is to the price of my life because it was not a real life before I met him. reach this part of me that nobody else ever could. I was about to apologize again even if I had no reason to but I felt like I had to for some peculiar reason but Adrian talked before giving me the chance." He replied not even turning back taking the way of the guest pavilion. "So yeah I'll save his soul. I am older than you. always thinking about fun and partying until I met you. He was…he just was. He gave me a small smile and kissed my forehead. My stomach rumbled again very loudly easing the tension. you taught me far more about my heart and soul than anyone else in the past 21 years so I guess…Well" he stopped looking away. to some extent. I looked at him mouth wide open. along with me. He understood that part of me that I'm not sure I even understood myself." Adrian chuckled. and still is. "So you have to understand me too Rose. You taught me so much about love and life. "But please while I'm away don't do anything stupid ok? Don't rush into anything. ." he said finally looking at me again. letting his lips on it a bit longer than necessary. I know how irrational you become when you're hungry. "You should always tell me how you feel and …" I started to move from one foot to the other as I was uncomfortable. I just nodded. I always took life lightly." He said with so much urgency that it tightened my chest. "You should go and eat Rose. "No…No it's all good" I said trying to sound at ease. the first time that someone became more important than my fun. He saw some part of me that nobody else's ever did. maybe it was to realize how deeply ran the love I felt for Dimitri or even how I felt uncomfortable after he pulled his heart out for me…maybe it was a combination of all that. You are the only person that can read through my pretense.I looked at Adrian and I could see the pain in his eyes even if he was trying his best to hide it. Adrian detailed me apparently chagrined but I was not sure what it was about. "So if he was here you would want him to be safe right? To be happy?" "Of course" I said like it was the stupidest questions I had ever heard… and it probably was. "You take care too ok?" I said to his retreating form. "I'm going away tomorrow but I'll be back. He gently brushed my cheekbone with his thumb pad without a word just staring into my eyes for a couple of second before letting go and taking the direction of the path. Maybe by the fact that I didn't love him as much as he seemed to love me." I added getting embarrassed.
"But why?" I let out in a cry. "Hey" I said with a sleepy voice. The man beside me started to kiss my neck making me moan. when the alarm clock started to beep annoyingly. . Usually Dimitri was frightening. threatening…a Strigoi. I looked back into his deep chocolate eyes. I was making him happy and he brought me peace and love…What else could I have asked for? I closed my eyes again with a small smile on my lips. "Really Rose…That's the life you want to lead?" Said a deep voice that I would probably recognize till my last breath. "Hello beautiful" he said against my neck and it was not Dimitri like it had been so many time before. "I thought you liked being in bed with me" I said eyes still closed. I opened my eyes.. much more than anything else." He added kissing the tip of my nose. I stayed in bed for a little while looking at the ceiling. As I started to emerge. "I'm taking care of the coffee" I said to him before getting out of the room leading into a very massive. I slightly turned in his embrace to face him. kissed him hard before getting out of bed. I felt a manly arm tighten around my waist and I couldn't help but smile. I was lying in bed. it was the real him! "Dim. It was the kind of feelings that only a good cry or a good fight could ease. Those words hurt me so deep. his perfectly tanned skin. how he healed my heart and that. I didn't know what I wanted to do…burst into tears or broke someone's neck since what I was feeling was so intense. I moved slightly to snuggle closer in the warm body beside me. a new type of dream that I hope I never have again.Dimitri? I…How…" I looked around but Adrian was nowhere to be found. I swirled around briskly and my heart jumped in my chest because it was not the strigoi version of the man I loved with every fiber of my being that was standing in front of me no. It was really him. In that dream. "You know I do. It's not everyday you graduate from University. "Honestly Rose I'm really disappointed in you. I was still in love with him and in his eyes there was only joy and love. I was about to reach for the kitchen door when a voice behind me startled me. even if it was just an echo of the love I had been able to give." He said standing straight about 10 feet from me. "No no my lil'dhampir we don't have time to go back to sleep" said Adrian with a small laugh. luxury living room. No.Chapter 9: When I woke up that morning. but last night was completely different. it was Adrian. I was thinking on how much I loved him. I brought my hand to his cheek brushing it lovingly.. I nodded giving up. if it was up to me we would never leave that bed but Lissa is graduating today…She needs you there. It had been almost a week since I last dreamt of Dimitri and like a reminder I dreamt of him last night and that one was brutal! It was not like the dreams I had since I came back.
"Honestly Rose you promised me! And now you're letting me wander the world like that!" He said pointing to his reflection. my silk pajamas." He said this time turning me around so I could face the 'real' Dimitri.I'm just dreaming". ashamed and most of all I felt like I was betraying my one love. tanned. splashed some cold water on my face to wash off the reminder of that torturing dream and rushed to the gym. sad." He added and there was pure pain in his eyes."Is that the life you want to lead? Really?" He said gesturing around. his cheek brushing mine. On the picture. feeling angry." "No I---" Dimitri closed the distance between us in a second and put his hands on my shoulders to make me face the full size mirror on the wall. I'm. "I thought we were special. "I love you Rose please…please save me. He was smiling brightly and his eyes were full of pride. "Let me guess…Not what I think? Complicated? What you had to do?" He said with a playful smile. "Is it why you broke your promise to me Rose? Is he the reason why you let me down?" He asked and I could hear both accusation and sadness in his voice. I looked to us and couldn't help but gasp when I locked eyes with his reflection. I was tough. not a wimp. that you loved me and…and you moved on. I said as an excuse. I need to find peace. I was standing in my graduation gown. the eyes cold and ringed with red…it was the Strigoi version of Dimitri. and all the pictures of Adrian and I in different places. changed into my sweats and training shirt. I'd still be here. "Your will is already wavering isn't it? I thought you were brave…" He took a deep breath. "No it didn't happen yet but it will…Sooner than you think. I cried enough and it was not me... "It's---" I started. "I mean Rose explain me what made you give up your life as a guardian to become Adrian Ivashkov fiancée?" He asked pointing to my left hand. "Well how lucky I am!! Miss Hathaway honored me with her presence today" said Stan with a snort as I walked into the gym." Tears started to fall down my cheeks. A sadness that was probably still there now. to have my redemption. alive but the one in the mirror was sickeningly white. Adrian was behind me with his arms wrapped around me possessively. "How could you do that? How could you let me down? I'm…I'm like that because of you Rose if we didn't go to rescue them. Today I literally considered training as a blessing since I needed it more than ever before." He took a picture frame on the coffee table and showed it to me. The Dimitri beside me was the real one. "That's precious!" he said sarcastically. diploma in hand. guilty. "It's not happening. "I mean…. I looked down and saw the completely insanely huge diamond on my ring finger. "That's already better than yesterday!" . I didn't think while fighting and it was good. "Do you think I wanted to be like that?" He asked still facing the mirror. I quickly jumped out of bed. I was always happy to train so it was the one hour when I truly felt in peace with myself. I was smiling too and I had my empty hand resting on his arms around me but there was some sadness deep in my eyes. Yeah I needed a good fight as I didn't want to cry anymore. He was leaning down resting his chin on my shoulder. Don't you see it? It already started. warm. That was when I woke up. tightened my hair into a high ponytail.
I could see incertitude on his face." I was pretty sure that pure fury crossed my face at this instant. I decided. How does it feel to know that I'm better in my bad days than you in your best?" Stan snorted. It was harder than I thought and I stumbled a bit. "You know what. I give you a freebie" I winked. "I see…your problem is jealousy" I said as we started to circle each other. "Old habits die hard I see?" He added with clear reprobation in the voice.I rolled my eyes with exasperation. "Ok but don't go crying when I'll break bones novice" he said with an malicious smile." Stan laughed. "Say the guy who is 30 and only has 1 molnija! Was it a natural death? Did the Strigoi actually killed himself because he was tired to hear you talk? Well…You know what we say don't you? The one who can't do. It hurt bad!! Probably since Dimitri said exactly the same thing in my dream. I was very very touchy today already and Stan Alto would be a real challenge. for the first time in my life. "Unless… Unless you know I'm going to annihilate you and you're too chicken to have it proven fair and square. "They see you as a little hero now but they'll figure out you're phony soon enough. It hit home." I said still circling him. "You had potential but you keep wasting it with your attitude…" He shook his head. "I knew people like you couldn't change" he added so smug it took all the self control I had left not to jump on him. He didn't manage to avoid my next punch and he grimaced under the pain as I was pretty sure I partially dislocated his jaw. I tried my best not to show him to what extent his words touched me but he was going to pay for it and I swore to myself that he was going to feel it. "You want to play? Let's play!" "Is that what you said to your mom last night?" I had the time to ask before he launched at me. I knew he was tempted but he was not that hot to go against school policy." I said going to stand at the center of the training mat. it's like fighting with a cripple " I said laughing. He tried a sidekick but I blocked it with my forearm. I dodged him quite easily punching his left side making him wince. "Come on dude make it believable. not to fuel the fire. "What's your twig with me Alto? Bad time of the month?" I asked with my sarcastic grin meaning 'screw-you' in Rose Hathaway language. Deal?" I asked with a teasing tone. "Tell me Stan. . "So you're not drunk today?" He asked coming to stand in front of me. I would have an ugly bruise in the morning. "You are just a waste of time. I forced a laugh. If one of us say 'enough' he loses. "Let's fight. really fight! No rules… no limits. Belikov would be so disappointed in you. teach. "Come on…it will be a secret I won't tell anyone." I saw the anger increase on his face and knew I touched his soft spot." He said taking an attacking stance. "Good morning to you too guardian Alto.
she will heal that in no time…I hope I can just avoid the full interrogatory. I started to punch him over and over again. his brown hair a real mess. "I'm getting bored Alto. threw a quick look at Stan who was still breathless on the floor. Man we really went far didn't we? I asked myself silently walking outside." I said with a light bow. a cut lip. He took the towel on the floor and threw it to me so i could wipe my face. "Say the guy that nobody want as a guardian so he sucks. I nodded to him. a purple mark on the left side of his jaw and a brand new black eye. "He'll go crazy and believe me I wouldn't want to be Alto if he ever found out. "You're a guardian for god sakes!" Said Pavel to Stan. Stan was a dick yeah but a good teacher. "You hit like a girl!" I said as we started circle each other again. "Yeah well I'm giving what you can take…. I probably didn't look much better. I ignored his outreached hand and winced standing up. The blood started to flow and that's when I really lost it. I already got beaten up a lot more than that in my life… unfortunately. "He wants to see you now. "Let me just find Lissa then. I was too full of myself and didn't expect him to get his balance back that fast.He automatically replicated with an uppercut in the stomach. "It was my fault" I said trying to stand up." He added reaching for my gym bag on the floor. Mazur wants to see you" he said reaching for my hand to help me up. he fell backward very easily when I jumped on him. I pushed him over the edge. He maybe called quit I didn't know but I only stopped hitting him when a strong hand pulled me away.' Stan and I just looked at Pavel without a word. I think I'll go fight with a preschooler. "Are you two crazy?!" Shouted Pavel astonished. I'll get more action. I knew it was petty but I wanted to humiliate him since he was trying to humiliate me by denigrating my whole training with Dimitri. I could see some blood dripping from the arch of his eyebrow. my hair was half down and even if my nose was not bleeding that much I was pretty sure I could run for 'Miss Psycho. It was hard enough to take my breath away but I was too proud to let him see the pain. I only had the time to see his fist connect with my nose and heard the sickening crack." Stan launched again but I twirled on myself so I faced his back and pushed him like a kid in the sandbox. "Mr." Said Pavel matter of factly. Pavel sighed with exasperation letting his hand fall to his side. Stan was half undress.Seeing the shame you are to Belikov's training" he said obnoxiously." I groaned with both annoyance and pain. and as he probably didn't expect me to continue fighting with a broken nose and blood all over me. Pavel looked at me with pursed lips. My shirt was ripped and covered in blood." . How could we justify ourselves? "I…" He shook his head. "We…We can't let your father see you like that. I just blocked the pain. Well I could imagine the picture. I wanted us to fight.
every word was true. . "Uh?" I asked coming back to reality. and figured that his words touched me far more than I wanted them to. "It doesn't matter anyways. it looks worse than it is. "Let's drop it k? I swore Abe would never find out and he never will. I couldn't say what he was thinking staring down at me with his damn sunglasses." I said walking a bit faster to reach the guest building. I knocked at Adrian's door and when he opened he paled at least 2 shades on his already ultra white skin…Boy I surely looked hideous! I chuckled trying to ease the anxiety in his eyes. "You have many members here on school ground but it would take hours to give you every name. he has been for years!!" Pavel stopped to look at me. "No I mean it! I don't hate you and what I said to you in the plane was out of line" he said with a tone that seemed sincere enough." Adrian narrowed his eyes in suspicion letting me in closely followed by Pavel. Even if I wanted to confide in someone Pavel would be at the bottom of the list. "Don't worry buddy. "Stan Alto is a pretty active member. I think Adrian Ivashkov might join it very soon but wait for it" I said with an overplayed cheerful tone. "Sorry I was trying to locate Lissa. "I'll send it back to the Court no worries." I said reaching Adrian's floor. "The club?" "Yeah I thought that each new member of the 'I-hate-Rose-Hathaway' club was introduced to the others.I quickly scanned Lissa's mind and was startled to find her in Adrian's room. "I just…Well sometime I get a bit--" "It was totally right." I laughed hiding my discomfort. What the hell what she doing there so early? What the heck was Adrian up to? It was like a miracle to have him up by lunchtime so now? An hour before class? It was total science fiction and I didn't like that. I was sure I looked drop dead gorgeous with my broken nose. "Oh so they don't introduce you to each other once you joined the club?" I asked evasively. "You'll never guess who is the president of the club! Queen bitch herself yes sir!! Well wait it's Queen Tatiana for you I guess" I said with my wide sarcastic and sufficient smile. What did you say?" "I asked you if you wouldn't mind telling me what happened in there?" He asked walking by my side mostly following my lead. "Why did you guys fight?" I snorted. "I guess I've got my answer" grumbled Pavel beside me. "I don't hate you Hathaway" he finally let out. "I truly don't give a shit about what you think" I added walking my back at him hoping he wouldn't see through my pretense. "Honestly dude whatever. "I---" He started again." He insisted." "It's not for that I'm apologizing. I shrugged dismissively. I was just too foolish to see it" I said opening the door of the building. I just need a quick healing and…" I looked down at my shirt "and maybe you can lend me one of your shirt" I grimaced. swollen lip and dried blood all over my face and shirt.
She chortled rolling her eyes. "Are you leaving? Why so soon?" I asked him trying to sound as detached as I could. Lissa looked at me shocked for a second. I just took a deep breath and walked to the bathroom. Well it was not like I didn't end up hurt before. I tried to put some order in my hair and tighten it in a ponytail. "I have some business to attend" he said dismissively. He was looking at him coldly like if he was investigating. I smiled guiltily to her before locking eyes with Adrian. They all had lives and it was just naïve to expect anything more. I was losing my way. As soon as I walked in I saw Abe fully dressed ready to go. Pavel looked at me for a second and nodded. I really wondered why he wanted to see me that early in the day. "Anytime" she said smiling apparently relieved to be useful to me which was totally insane if only she knew how useful she was every minute of every day for my broken heart. not suspecting much more. I almost snapped at him that he was not my mother but it was not worth it. I washed my face to remove the dry blood. Adrian was now relocking his suitcase as he probably opened it to give me the shirt. put Adrian shirt that looked more like a summer dress on me than a shirt."Lissa I need you !!" I said trying to sound as teasing as I could. "Yeah I came in the room without warning while they were training. "Stan did this to you?" she asked directly in my mind." . Dimitri did have a point in my dream. "Well thanks guys" I said to Lissa and Adrian still super curious on why she was there but I guessed I would find out later on. "Thanks" I said kissing her forehead. "Training" I said with a little guilty smile. "Life continues you know. I knew at this instant that if I asked him to stay he would and things would change but I wouldn't ask him to stay. I removed my shirt and threw it in the bin. "There is a shirt for you in the bathroom" said Adrian still eyeing me suspiciously. not today not ever." "Uh huh" said Adrian clearly not convinced but I couldn't comment as Lissa was healing my lip now. Pavel nodded to them before leading me out down to Abe's room. I was getting uncomfortable as we got closer. I hugged Lissa whispering to her ear that she needed to find Stan and heal him too. But still it was only 3 days since he came. Are they all leaving me? I asked to myself stupidly. "Is that so?" Asked Adrian to Pavel. She was doing some figure on the bench she lost her concentration and fell flat on her face. Lissa was done within minutes.
I could see the worry cross his face. "Your friends…your mother as more fragile than they seem to be. "It's not the end of it. I looked up to meet his eyes that were the exact same shade than mine and nodded. "But don't worry about me. It was far more a prayer than an order and it was the only thing that really stopped me from snapping at him." I was not sure it was a good thing myself and I knew well enough that I would never be the fearless Rose i once were. "You take care ok?" "We'll see each other again Kazim" he smiled." "I guess" I said starting to look around his room as I was getting a bit uncomfortable with the building intimacy of the moment. he bent down and kissed my forehead. Well it was nice to meet you" I said with a smile. "I see…'' Said Abe raising an eyebrow." He said the voice urgent yet not commanding.I give him a tired laugh. And being the damaged girl I was I only managed an 'ok cool'. "I'll do my best" I said with a small smile reaching up to squeeze the hand that what on my shoulder. All those things were changing me and I would never be the girl I used to be. Afterward he did something that I never saw coming." He added walking to me resting his hands on my shoulders. not really. We'll see each other again…soon" he added. whatever. follow the right path. and that kiss brought some fatherly love in my life. You have to be prudent for them. Abe smile progressively swept away. whatever small that part might be. "Why did you want to see me?" Abe jerked back a little before bursting into laugher. "No. Abe pursed his lips thoughtful probably trying to read my face. "I'm not crazy you know" I said standing straighter "Maybe a little impaired right now but I will get back to how I used to be eventually. just the beginning. I hoped he would be a part of my life forever. "I really do enjoy your candor you know that?" He shook his head still having a smile on his face. That brought tears in my eyes. "Yeah I know. . "You have to be safe for me" he added in a whisper. "I wanted to tell you goodbye and tell you that I'm not abandoning your or anything. "But…'' I bite my bottom lip not sure on how to say things without sounding like a brat. I never EVER imagined that Abe could be affectionate too. And I needed it!! Needed it so much." I said doing my best not to add that trouble was stalking me anyways and that even if I stayed here my personal living nightmare was going to find me. "Do I even want to know?" Asked Abe pointing to the way I was dressed. Abe shot a quick gaze to Pavel who shrugged. I've been foolish and reckless enough for a lifetime. I looked down and saw some faint drops of blood on my sweat pant and it was clear that the navy blue shirt I was wearing was not mine for many obvious reasons as it was a Ralph Lauren man polo stopping just above my knees which would be very hazardous for a fight. "And you really need to take care of yourself Rose." I said sincerely. the one that is set in front of you don't…don't sway. I won't look for trouble. I realized that now that I found him…or rather he found me. He then gave me an half smile but frowned detailing my clothes.
"Thank you" I said reaching up giving him an awkward hug. it has been complete silence and even if it angered me to recognize it Adrian silence was hurting far more than expected. only few people have it. "Good" I said surprised that he called me Rose. "This is my private cell number. It was better anyways because I only had 30 minutes left before class and I needed to shower. "You take care of him ok?" I asked in a hiss. change and grab something to eat." He said seriously. "Bye" I said before running back to the dorm." I added and couldn't help but chuckle when I saw the shock cross his face. Christian seemed to be so receptive to me. Every man I cared about always left me in a way or another. I sighed and sat on my bed. "Call me if you need anything or if you… just want to talk" he said and I could see he was as uncomfortable in his new father role than I was in my daughter's one. maybe because he realized that it hurt me to see both Abe and Adrian leave me. except a quick call from Abe three days ago to check on me. I didn't know much myself and the details I gathered during my spying and close studying of my mother and him while they were talking was not something that needed to be shared with Lissa." He said giving it to me. Mason. Maybe all the terrible memories and experiences we shared finally connected us on such a deep level that we could recognize the pain and anguish hidden in each other more than anyone else's could. "I swear on my life and honor that I'll do anything in my power to keep him safe Rose. a lot more than he used to…actually a lot more than anybody else.He nodded resigned and reached for a paper on the table. I had a chat about Abe being my father with Lissa but honestly there were not much to be said about it. "I'll see you soon. you shouldn't hide them. I walked to the door but turned around just before opening it. I expected Pavel to snap at me. They are not freaky…they are beautiful. Chapter 10: It has been 5 days now that both Adrian and Abe left me and I couldn't help to see that had become a pattern in my life. I was still waiting on Christian to comment on it. Dimitri. but he just smiled taking off his sunglasses to look me in the eyes." "Of course" he said with his trademark grin. . His phone started to vibrate on the coffee table and as he reached for it I realized the moment was over. I was hurt because he didn't even visit my dreams…not even once!! So much for loving me. getting on his high horse. Adrian and now Abe…. it was much more relevant to my mom and father youth than anything else. but he didn't yet. Well to be fair the two last ones told me they would be back eventually but. It was probably because everything was changing so much around me that I wanted so much to have some constancy in my life or maybe it was because I loved the way I could see myself through his eyes. "And for your eyes. My first class was bodyguard technique and after missing it yesterday I was sure to get my ass kicked if I showed up even 2 minutes late. "If anything happens to him I swear to God that I'll hunt you down and kill you with my bare hands" I said glaring trying to sound as threatening as I could. Looking at his eyes was as surprising the second time around but I tried to keep my face blank. I still took a few minutes to talk to Pavel.
Christian rolled his eyes but couldn't help to smile too. I quickly looked at the package again and shook my head. Run… Run like my life was depending on it. . "I see!" I said not really knowing where he was going." Said Christian with a sure voice walking into my room before I even invited him in.You can't save anyone. of my time in Russia. we could see that they were both dead tired…Well. I opened the door to someone I didn't expect. the one were I stayed awake thinking about things I shouldn't think about. I knew that dealing with a 13 hours time difference was giving you one bitch of a jet lag. She arrived in the morning and. "I told you the pony club would accept you after all… you just needed to believe" I added with a grin. so tired I would fall to sleep and the best way I knew how was to run…run till my muscles hurt. "Do you know how insane this sounds?" I asked looking deep into his eyes trying to figure out if he was drugged or drunk or even possessed…Yeah I watched Supernatural the night before. "No I mean whatever crazy plan you are putting together. as she handed it to me. reliving moments that was making my heart break every time. "Fuck curfew!" I said jumped out of my jeans putting my sweats and tightening my trainers. it really didn't help to deal with my own pain. You're not superman…. I had felt Lissa's pain for me. "I…what?!" I asked completely dumbfounded sitting beside him. We decided to meet again tomorrow since. even if I was happy to see her and Mark. Even…even if it's helping the crazy psycho to escape" he added sitting on my bed. you can't even save yourself I said to myself now looking at the alarm clock. "I'm in. "I've got a pretty good idea yeah. and in some ways it was true. I couldn't help but feel a little stabbing pain in my chest as they recalled me. Christian was standing by my desk looking down to the package thoughtful. I was not ready to open it and I knew it. I turned to leave when I heard a quick knock at my door. very much to my surprise. I needed to get tired. "Please come in" I said sarcastically closing the door. I frowned and quickly glanced at the alarm clock again. In addition to that unwanted trip down memory lane.Moreover Lissa was very excited over the last two days because Oksana. as charming as they were.. I'm in. It was only 40 minutes from curfew… Too late to go and run laps. I could see it would be one of those nights. So close to curfew it had to be a guardian. a package from the Belikovs' and. run till I was too tired that I felt my brain was in a haze. I instinctively looked at my desk now where the package was resting unopened and kept my eyes on it like I had a super X ray vision. not that I forgot anyways. Oksana had a little package for me." He said a smile playing on his lips "but I know that.. you will not be able to do it on your own and well…" he pointed to his chest. whatever the plan might be. accepted Lissa's invitation to come to help her…us with the Spirit.well at least as far as my sanity was concerned. "So…" "I'm in" he said turning around looking at me with a determined expression.
back to your friends…the people you always knew. pride only bring disgrace. not because of me. "Listen" he walked to me. I saw a grey knitted piece of fabric. "I… I'm not working on any plans really" I said sincerely as I was so lost at the time being and I knew that whatever the decision I would take it would have its consequences. "K I need to get out before the matron annoys me because I'll have the obligation to set her ass on fire well… it's probably the only way she has to get hot anyways. "And what a great addition to my 'crazy black sheep' resume: Accomplice of baby mobster!!" He said with his goofy grin. humility can sometime be life saving. "that's not me! I'm the Strigoi wannabe remember? The doggy poop stuck under Lissa golden shoe." "Yeah!! I mean my reputation in the Moroi world is so stellar already…oh no wait…" He said pretending to think. I also sent you the black knitted scarf that was Dimka's favorite. You'll need help and I'm offering it so please consider it. I know that nobody could appreciate it or take care of it the way that you will. "I'm not saying that you already have it all figured out but I know you will soon enough and you can't do it alone… whatever it is. "it would be insane to mix you up in that I mean…Come on it would be dangerous and it could ruin your future." He added not bitter. I nodded as he was right. I sighed and opened the box with shaky hands. resting his hands on my shoulders. It was a letter written by Olena. I looked at him rolling my eyes but I couldn't laugh as I didn't want him to get hurt. A piece of paper was folded in it. Dear Rose." He added urgently. It's the exact same than the one Viktoria had and that you liked so much. You need the constancy in your life now more than ever. He knew perfectly that he was the black sheep of the Moroi world and he couldn't care less. The time would come when I'd need someone and lets face it Christian was the only one that was more an asset than a weight. . Christian was really becoming my best friend and that's something I would have never EVER imagined. I took it out and unfolded it carefully it was a nice cardigan.I shook my head and stood up. "I…" I bit my bottom lip. I threw him a reprobating glance but smiled. it was just like he was stating a fact. "Don't be so proud Rose. Everything came with a price right? "And even if I did…which I'm not" I specified again. "No matter how long you are going to wait to open the box it will hurt just the same. Once he opened the door he turned around and pointed to my desk. he was right…of course he was right." He added with a grin. Nobody ever chocked swallowing their pride." I wanted to say something but he cover my mouth wit his hand. I hope things are getting better for you back home. I hope you'll liked the cardigan I knitted for you. As soon as I opened it." I turned round and looked at the box too.
I looked up. Dennis told everything to Nikolai. you were right all along! Rolland was just a filthy little … But I refused to see it and all you did was looking out for me. the old witch thought I had a big heart? Well I didn't see that one coming I really thought she was about to join the 'I-hate-rose' club. Olena. "Wow…" I whispered looking at the letter. I'm mortified just rethinking about it. there were little initials embroidered 'D. My eyes filled up with tears as I took the very soft warm scarf out of the package. it's not that uncommon =D) Take care of you Love. (A. How could I ever say those things to you? I'm so sorry Rose! Please forgive me. There was an envelope with my name and I could easily recognize Viktoria writing. You were right. Anyways life at school is going fine. On the bottom left. Olena had such a neat. I was already pretty emotional after reading Olena's letter and I didn't know if I really wanted to know what Viktoria had to say since we didn't really ended things as BFFs. don't let go of a path because the others think it won't lead you anywhere. Rose. "Dimitri" I whispered in it. I wrapped the scarf around my neck and breathed hard. Well I had to do it eventually. I would not blame you if you didn't want to have anything to do with me again but Yeva…Yeva told me I should write to you since you have a big heart and if anyone could understand words said out of anger it was you. I folded the scarf and cardigan very carefully and looked what was left in the box. I squinted my eyes trying to read it. and I said all these mean things I didn't even mean because of course I see you as a sister!! And how could I even say you were jealous?! After you told me what you and Dimka shared it's just…unforgivable I know that. I hesitated for a little while. Sometime bravery is to take the . Just know that we love you and that you'll always have a home here in Baia. I sighed. her name is Dimka Roza Belikova. I was not sure you ever wanted to hear from me again not after…not after the horrible things I said to you. It was not as bad as Adrian's hieroglyphic writing but it was pretty close. clear writing but it was clear that Viktoria didn't inherit it. eyes closed.Yeva and Abe explained us that you had to leave and we understand believe me.' . Oh by the way Sonya had the baby it's a little girl She was named after you and Dimitri. trying to protect me just like Dimka would have.B. You are welcome home whenever you want to. apparently I was wrong.N: Before you can say anything i know a Russian girl whose first name is Dimka. 'Sorry' actually doesn't even beginning to express how bad I feel. apparently you really are one of a kind (not that I ever doubted that). Yeva asked me to give you a message and I quote ( I don't get it myself but I wouldn't hear the end of it if I didn't do it) Here it goes: "Every tale has a part of truth in it. I can't wait to start junior year to really get into bodyguard training I wish I could fight like you.
"I accept your offer. Xoxo Vik. Rhonda did tell me that I was going to destroy what was undead. don't let go of a path because the others think it won't lead you anywhere. try to come up with a viable plan then maybe. Sometime bravery is to take the road to nowhere. I yawned loudly. Maybe Mark could tell me a bit more about the abilities that us. and to be honest. maybe we didn't spend that much time together but you took a place in our hearts and in our lives. If I did made the reversion of the Strigoi state real and widely known we could get back the people we love…make Strigoi number drop and increasing ours in the same time. Eddie included. I knew only too well what having a temper made you do or say sometime.It can destroy us. As I laid on top of the cover. I was tired but I would do it first thing in the morning.. It was too late for me to write back.. "Maybe we can try to research first. Tomorrow was going to be a long emotional day and I needed all the rest I could get. I was rather pleased too. there was a way to save his soul and I needed to find it. Follow your intuition for the ultimate gift…his Soul" Whatever that means. She gave me her email address. I got out of his grip and crossed my arms on my chest. had. Well I look forward to hear from you but as I said before I would totally understand If you didn't want to have anything to do with me anymore. Yeva words replayed in my head over and over again 'Every tale has a part of truth in it." . shadow kissed. I was still a bit confused in the morning but thank god Lissa did almost all the talking as she was overly excited with Oksana being around. I couldn't stay mad at her.road to nowhere. Follow your intuition for the ultimate gift…his Soul" What did she mean? This message and my Dimitri dreams made things pretty clear. We planned to meet in one of the guest lounge after class to discuss the whole bound issue just the four of us so Lissa left before the end of breakfast to make sure we could have a lounge in the afternoon. It would have to wait till tomorrow to do the research.. Maybe there was something I could use in my attempt to save Dimitri's soul maybe… maybe Mark did try to get in the black hole i saw in the plane. "I'm glad you did" he said grinning. What did Victor say…His brother was in the land of kielland or something like that whatever that meant.." I said to him in a hush tone. not 'killed' but 'destroy'. "We're going to have so much fun together. "You told me you got some hints on where that Robert dude might be well…" he shrugged. As we left the commons I caught Christian's hand. It's…it's non sense!" I added shaking my head regretting to have said I wanted him in. "Hey hey… chill Rose" he said tightening his grip on my hand causing some curious looks from the other students." "It's serious Chris. And only maybe we would act. I hope you forgive me Rose because despite what I could have said you truly are a sister to me.
I was rushing to the guest pavilion. I like when you and I collide. walking into my own personal hell…Calculus.000 square miles or something. "Well…148. I'll check if there is something else that come out with your Kielland or Kiellan that can be known of psycho Dashkov of course. "Victor told me that that his brother was in the land of kielland or kiellan or something like that. "Why did you come back?" I asked and realized the answer while I was asking the question.for being Yeva i guess." I said sincerely as we resumed to walk. "You are honestly asking me? I mean really?" Christian chuckled and shook his head. "That's what fighting partners are here for" he said elbowing me playfully.." I said loosing hope. "Good for him! but if that's true Robert would be in Norway and that sucks ass because it's a big country I mean like what …100.. when I literally ran into someone. I pulled Christian aside against the wall. He perfectly knew that even with his clue I would not go anywhere…Evil son of a bitch! I wrote a quick email to Viktoria during my free period telling her that I wasn't mad anymore and I asked her to thank her mother for the sweet presents and Yeva for. I couldn't say anything. I looked at him lips pursed." He said with a wide grin. "Kielland like in Alexander Kielland the author?" Asked Christian I gave him my best 'dude-what-the-fuck' face. It would be impossible to find a man in such a big country." "Kielland…kiellan…" whispered Christian thoughtful. Christian did find out that the only Kielland that made sense was the author he thought of earlier and it made me slightly sullen as now I was sure. "You can count on it Ozera" I said back.I wanted to hug him. "See you later Hathaway" he added taking the corridor on the left. At the end of the day. I had no right to be angry at him for not giving me any news in his 6 days away. to thank him to be such a good friend but people would get the wrong idea and I really didn't need more things said about me..746 to be exact" said Christian dismissively. "I have a free period before lunch. The day went fast and I actually was happy to meet with Oksana and Mark tonight even if it would stir that part of me I wanted to forget. "I'm sorry" I said quickly looking up my smile fading away. we still had 10 minutes before classes started. "Lissa told you for Oksana?" .. "You really are a brainiac aren't you?" I asked somehow impressed "or only an encyclopedia of random useless facts?" "A bit of both I think" he said sticking his tongue out.for being well. "That's alright my little dhampir. "He was a very famous Norwegian author" he specified.... I quickly looked at the clock on the wall.I was not entitled to." "Thank you Chris. only Victor could help me out.
one of the building stone. seeing Auras and stuff but Lissa is really a master at healing even if you two . "Maybe we could have a little talk just the two of us." It would be a corner stone of my plan. "Nothing at all…" "I know you better than that" he said proudly." The three Spirit users looked at me with wide eyes. It has been three days since Oksana arrived and I spent most of my alone time with Mark Christian and Eddie. "Mark!!" I said with clear pleasure to get away from Adrian scrutinizing eyes. "Yeah…" I trailed off. Chapter 11: "Well maybe you all share the same basics but you have a special gift more developed than the others." "That's a great idea" I said actually rather pleased as there was so many things I needed to know. "I needed to talk to you actually. I wanted him to want me." I said standing beside him. he was closing himself like an oyster. "See you" I added to Adrian's attention." I snorted "yea right! Well if you knew me that well you…" I sighed and shook my head. dutifully avoiding Adrian. "Not something I wasn't grateful for you to interrupt" I said sincerely. He narrowed his eyes slightly. "You can maybe fool the others but you can't fool me. "You bet. "Well see you around" I said trying to dodge him. "Lets go. "I was wondering…" Mark quickly look at Adrian. I was so selfish. two shadow-kissed. "What…What did you say?" Asked Lissa still looking at me like I was an Alien. to love me even if I couldn't give him as much love. "I was thinking we could give the Spirit users some alone time and spend some time together. I was actually getting pretty good at dodging him and I could see it was getting on his last nerve. "You are all super good at compulsion." "I was not interrupting anything right?" Asked Mark giving me a sidelong glance. I knew I was being childish but I couldn't help it. "Well…" I shrugged looking at Mark who was sat beside Oksana." I twisted my mouth thinking "like a specialization in the specialization. As for Mark he was pleased to share his knowledge with me but each time I tried to talk about spirits. "Rose?" a deep manly voice called.He nodded and my heart sank. especially never getting alone with him. "Moroi/dhampir relationships can be hard… I know" he said with a smile." "Of course!" I said jumping on the occasion. "Nothing's wrong Adrian" I said wearily. He chuckled. "What's up with you Rose?" He asked moving quickly to stand in front of me again. He caught my arm.
the probability of death being pretty high. I felt better exposing my crazy theory to him as he was probably as unstable as I was for following me in my crazy still undecided plan. I added to myself. "All I'm saying is that even if they work for years they probably won't get as good as she is or if they did. "Some women find that charming!" He said with a fake offended tone.I started to think but stopped almost straight away. A small part of her was scared that I was pulling away. she was my Lissa. my best friend…my sister. I didn't want to have too many lives. "Maybe that's why." "Go immolate yourself!" I said punching his shoulder playfully. for no ulterior evil motives. Adrian was looking at us with sharp eyes and Lissa envied my friendship with Christian more and more. it would be far more energy consuming for them. I was pretty sure that the food they were cooking here had for only goal to punish us I mean come on no food could be that tasteless." I added on a humorous note." said Christian casually leaning against the wall by the door. " Maybe we need to combine all these aspects to save--. "Oooo did you buy a dictionary?? Immolate?? Nice" he said with his goofy grin tousling my hair." I said with a small smile looking at Lissa again. You Oksana you can visit people mind and do many cool trick but Lissa and Adrian can barely graze thoughts. each Spirit user being more effective in certain aspect than other…it makes sense. that I didn't need her as much as I used too when she needed me even more. "Not bad…not bad at all!" Said Mark approvingly. "Not that you showed up in my dreams or anything recently" I added wanting to slap myself almost straight away as understanding lit up his face. "I hope you didn't give yourself a brain hemorrhage figuring that one out. Oksana the super mind reader and Adrian the dream walker well the creepy stalker really. I refused to think about the way to save Dimitri that involved too many people. I decided to have a chat about that with her soon enough because even if Christian now occupied a place in my life and heart it could never compete with her. that Lissa still can't dream walk and maybe she will only be able to do it for short period or stuff like that. "I…yeah. "And I think it's probably right." I simply said with an apologizing smile. The smell was so mouth watering that I immediately guessed it was not coming from the Academy kitchen.can do it of course but she put way less effort than you into it. Lissa seemed to like the idea that she couldn't dream walk not because she was too weak or not good enough but just because it was just the way it was. if things turned badly. "That's completely possible. "Ok… but they are only working on it since like 3 days. "Yeah well sorry we're not Edward fans here… Stalker don't particularly give me the hots!" I said dismissively. or death on my conscience. At this moment there was a knock at the lounge door and some waiting staff came in with some food." I said looking at him now. even after so many months of training. Lissa clearly her throat to attract our attention." "Look at you all brainiac!" Said Christian shrugging from his position against the wall walking to sit beside me. "Maybe Lissa is supposed to be the super healer." And thank god for that. "It's actually very bright" said Mark ignoring the little teasing. . I had already too many.
"You did that?" I asked Adrian pointing to the trays full of food. "I know I let you down before I'm not denying that but I love you so so much. I grimaced as Lisa confirmed. I nodded and caught her hand. I sighed. "You know how sometime you can't control the way your power works right?" I asked Lissa as slowly walked to the feeders. "I never said it wasn't possible" I said still looking straight ahead finishing the chicken fried rice on my plate." "I'm going to the feeders" said Lissa almost at the door. "Nevermind. We needed to stay all together so he had to be attributed either to Lissa or Christian. "Who else?" He said with his cocky grin. but I did fight for us. "Do you envy them as much as I do?" "I don't envy all the trouble they had to face to be together." She looked up to me her jade eyes full of wonder and doubt. "See a dhampir and a Moroi can be happy together" whispered Adrian to my ear. if not more. "Well I can't help it either and I can't feel how you feel" I said stopping in the path to face her. I knew I would pass my finals without any trouble. "It's getting late anyways. "It depends if the person is worth fighting for" I retorted quickly glancing back to his puzzled look. guardians included. That deep love made my heart ache. They were not touchy feely but the way they looked at each other. They arranged to meet tomorrow in the afternoon but I was to pleased to have a fighting study session with Eddie so I could zap the afternoon "Spirit training" ." I simply said knowing I was an hypocrite because my relationship with Dimitri did face as many trouble than they did. the way he delicately brushed her hand. "I know that…" she trailed off warily. I don't think I could. could fight as well as I did but I needed Eddie to pass with flying colors too. "Oh…'' she said embarrassed the red creeping to her cheeks. "Wait I'm coming with you!" I said jumping on the occasion. "Nobody could ever take your place in my life Liss. It was not being cocky or anything but I didn't think that a lot of persons. As we started eating some Chinese food I couldn't help to look at Oksana and Mark and how they were with each other." . I was so lost in my thoughts that I didn't even hear him come to stand behind me. "Yeah it all depend who you're fighting for" he said a bit colder like if he was reading my mind." "Yeah better call it a night… I heard you youngsters have some exams to revise" added Oksana with a small smile.
The army is being raised. "Always Alice. "He will always be the sarcastic smartass with an attitude. She smiled looking at Lissa. "Well you know during my next adventure if I have to leave you on the side…safe for a little while it will not be because I love you or trust you less than anyone else. no questions but I'll make my way back too you always. Christian always enjoyed having her and Lissa didn't mind that much either." When Lissa was done with her feeding we stayed quiet for a little while lost in our thought. "It's true that Christian and I share something. Blood was blood." I said scanning the room. "I love you too Rose" she whispered. "Whenever you want princess. "I can take care of myself. "But who is keeping you safe?" I snorted." Lissa hugged me tightly and I could feel the relief coming from her. "So Rose keeping Lissa safe?" She asked me as Lissa sat beside her in the cubicle. my sister and nothing or nobody could ever change that ok?" Lissa nodded again.She gave me a small smile. not to follow me. "And please don't even think that anybody can take your place in my life or in my heart because…because that's never going to happen. . "I promise" she finally said realizing how much faith she had in me. I'll need you to step aside. "Please Lissa you have to trust me on that. "Also you need to know that…'' I cleared my throat not really knowing how to say that. he wants you' But instead Alice eyes almost went blank." Lissa seemed to ponder that for an eternity." I said more urgently. they won't leave without what he wants. "If one day I tell you to stay aside. Even closer than you think it is. she was wondering why I would ask her something like that and I had planned something too dangerous." I smiled. you need to be ready…Keep her safe by keeping yourself alive. Lissa got Alice." "What does he want?" I asked trying to sound detached but I could almost make her answer in my head 'you. "Guardian or not. We're friends and I care about him very much but…'' I smiled a goofy smile. "The danger is getting closer and closer." Lissa looked at me without a word." "Good good. "Good" I said taking her hand leading her in the commons to the feeders. Since the danger is getting closer. Silly girl! Then I thought of my future crazy plans and the smile I had vanished. Not now or in a million year. It will be because I love you more and that I'd need all my mind to do something and that if I worry about you well…I can be weakened." Lissa froze and I looked down to meet Alice half gone gaze. Crazy old Alice as a feeder today. removing hair from her neck. You are my Lissa. "What?" I asked not able to hide my trouble.
it's almost curfew anyways I promise we'll figure something in the morning. I wanted to wait till graduation before executing any crazing plan we would come up with but I never thought that it was possible for Dimitri to find me before that. I'll come out with a plan. I needed to warn the guardians soon enough that Dimitri was on his way. We were talking with the board and you know we wanted to know if you wouldn't mond be the last to take it because…well with all the training you had and the experience--" "I might discourage the others?" I tried. "What can I do for you guardian Alto?" I asked as politely as I could." I said trying to sound far more confident than I actually felt." "Yeah it's about your practice exams. Lissa did find him at the gym after our fight and healed him no question asked. nodded to Stan and left. "You know what let me just figure all it out."Do you think she was talking about--" "I don't know Liss" but I knew deep down it was the only real danger in our near future." I said uncomfortable. She hugged me." He said grimacing. We were now a lot more cordial to each other." "Don't mention it. Dimitri was as much as a badass alive or undead and if he wanted in I knew he could do it. Maybe that fight did help ease some tension between us. "But Alice is crazy right?" "Yeah she is but…" I shrugged. Stan was not one to thank people and me in particular. "Not yet…but maybe soon. If you guys think it's for the best." "Thank you. "Go to your room Liss. Well we were far from being buddies or anything but we were not on each other throat anymore. "Is there something wrong?" He asked pointing to the Moroi dorm.that's the general idea yeah. "Rose can I have a word with you please?" asked Stan pretty cordially seeing us leave the commons. She seemed to calm down. "Honestly whatever. "That's…. security around campus needed to be increased or I needed to leave campus and make it common knowledge…Yeah!! That could be the solution. "Tomorrow? Training?" ." "Soon?" "I'll keep you posted" I shrugged dismissively. I looked at her till she entered the Moroi dorms before concentrating on Stan." "Yeah?" "Of course!" I said trying to reassure her. "Anyways….
"One day you might decide to break him free and we couldn't let you become a traitor. "Well I can't be weird out because of the bull you served me last week. "Oh Rose who do you think you are talking to? Ralph Sarcozy?!" He sighed. That's…that's why Lissa was here that morning. He laughed but it didn't reach his eyes." I nodded as now he got my full attention. "Do you really need to ask?" Adrian sighed. "I bet" he said shaking his head walking in the common. "Do you really want to know what your dad and I did during the week?" He asked crossing his arms on his chest. "If I left it was for you!" He hissed with anger. I couldn't let you become one." "I don't understand. "Lets go somewhere quiet. "Why are you avoiding me?" Asked Adrian coming to full view." He winked." He said still calm. "Yeah well I don't see why then!" I sighed." "Bull?!" He ask with incredulity."I wouldn't miss it for the world" I said not able to conceal the sarcasm in my voice any longer. "I was with your father we…" He looked around. I know you well but she knows you better than anyone else." I said confused." "Moi?!" I shrieked a bit louder than intended attracting the curious look from some of the students that were going back to their dorm. Him and Abe?? Together?! "My room?" He asked and for the first time it had no double meaning. "Okay let's go . "Do you really think that's why I'm avoiding you?!" Adrian gave me is best 'duh' face. "You know you're the biggest hypocrite I have ever met. I just wanted her to tell me to what extend you could defy authority…pretty scary!!" I just sat silently trying to keep my feelings in check." As soon as we made it to the room Adrian turned toward me and he was still angry. "Yeah you. I was walking back to the dhampir dorm when a voice came from beside the old oak tree. . "Well we convinced the judicial board to let do the research by letting Victor Dashkov escape. "I've been back three days and where is Rose? Everywhere I'm not. "None of us are crazy Rose. well…under very high supervision but still." "I'm not avoiding you" I said turning to face him. "You promised to stay safe not to go into any crazy scheme but I…we know you and one day…" he walked to the seat opposite to mine. "Well you left for a week and didn't even give me a call so…" I shrugged "allow me to doubt your sincerity dude." "That's…" He started and I saw anger flash in his eyes. "You told me that I should tell you how I feel and now that I did you are avoiding me!" "I…" I looked around.
"I need to get out of here.it was very light compulsion don't worry the arguments were pretty valid. You could have been accused of treason too!" "Don't you think I know that?" He said so calm I wanted to slap him. "How did you that?" "I think you do know how I did that. I…" he ran his hand through his hair and stood up." Said Adrian laughing. "Well I did consider that but you see you told me Victor said his brother was a bit ummm… lets say impaired. "That's what I intend to do. why did he need to kidnap Lissa to be healed?" He asked rhetorically...the Academy I mean. I just needed one more ally now. "So my guess is that his brother is really too far gone to do magic and so…" he shrugged before taking a strand of lose hair from my face. he was always there for me and it actually hurt me to know that I could never love him as much as he deserved to be loved." "You don't have to say anything I didn't do anything I didn't want to do. "But you see I couldn't help to ponder that." "You 'convinced' them?" I asked scared to realized what he meant." I said catching his hand intertwining our fingers. "Ivashkov or not… I shook my head. safer…as silly as it seemed. "But why didn't you try to compel Victor I mean…." "Completely coocoo yeah. I was glad to have all these people ready to help. "You compelled the judicial committee! Do you even know how risky that was?" I asked amazed by the insane risk he was taking for me. to support you even if you go crazy on me and…" he shrugged." I jumped from my seat and hugged him tight." He said patiently keeping his eyes in mine. placing it behind my ear." "I don't…I don't know what to say. I didn't have to do it on my own and that was maybe what will make me win. "I need to talk to someone" . I would never forgive myself if anything would have happenned to him. He was so good." "It's another way to say it. but that part was just an insult to what he deserved or even to what I fell for Dimitri…Dimitri. "I promised to always be here for you Rose. "We need Victor to unlock the probable mess that is Robert's mind.if he reveals the location of his brother…" I started but I was scared to sound ungrateful. Victor will think it's an escape but it will be all organized. But part of me loved him of course. "No sorry I mean I need to get out of the Academy as behind the protecting ward. "Compulsion…" I whispered. "I needed your father influence to organize the meeting then well…. hot strong hand in mine made me feel a bit better."I… what?!!!" "Yeah you heard well." "Why? You promised to graduate Rose!" Started Adrian getting unnerved. I got out of Adrian arms and I could see he was reluctant to let me go." He added letting his hand slide along my neck before resting it on my shoulder. his dried. I was glad that question didn't require an answer because I didn't think about that and I wasn't pleased about it." He smiled "well we'll have two secret service agents serving as guardians but you know…it won't ruin your whole life. I didn't care if I was crossing the line again. if Victor brother was a Spirit user powerful enough to bring back a Strigoi. I knew it was bad to do that since it could lead him in but I just enjoyed being with him.
" I whispered. I started to have trouble breathing…yep it was official. "I really need you buddy." I remembered that fear and agitation could help trigger the spirits. "Wait for me I'll be back in a minute" I said taking off my healing ring. "Andre please show your face." He said pulling me to him still keeping my hand in his. I knew I could have called any random ghost really but one I knew made me feel better…. "Yeah he is just--" I pointed ahead. "I…ummm… I need your help". "Ok maybe I shouldn't have asked. "Andre." I opened my eyes slowly and sighed with relief. "Come here" I said gripping his shirt with my free hand and pulled him to me giving him a chast kiss on the lips.safer in a weird way. Andre smile widened slightly and he nodded his hello. I buried my hands deep in my jeans' pockets. up the path. "Thank you" I said letting go of his shirt. "No actually I'm lost. with a sad smile. They were more 'staring-till-giving-you-the-creeps' type. I closed my eyes thinking on how Dimitri was getting closer." I said simply. . My heart started to beat faster. I need a favor from him and ghost or not he will have to do it. Chapter 12: When we made it out of the academy I walked with Adrian to a shadowy spot as the sun was up now.." "Ok… okay" said Adrian letting go of his grip around my waist but still keeping my hand in his. the danger. "Let's go talk to the ghost" he said like he was talking about a random subject. the pain of facing him without a way to save him. I was having a small panic attack. Andre was standing there. "Is he here?" Asked Adrian looking at the spot I was looking at curiously.." I laughed. in front of me. I really start to feel for the kid in the sixth sense you know" I said concentrating on Andre again. "Anytime my little dhampir…anytime" he said quickly kissing my forehead before pulling me out of the room. Andre kept staring at me…. I walked about 5 feet away from him. "Andre…Andre. It was quite passed curfew now but neither of us cared that much."Ooooo I see. May I ask you who you want to talk to?" "Yeah it's Andre Dragomir. please" I whispered again. "Hey" I said stupidly. "Nah I mean it. I shook my head but cannot stopped my smile. With everything he had done he deserved that much and deep down I knew I wanted to kiss him. I felt self conscious as I could feel Adrian's eyes on my neck. "Take care of that for me will you?" Adrian nodded. I forgot that ghost were not really what we could call talkative. "Never mind. He wrapped his free arm around me. his lips felt good on mine.
I was rather pleased now that Adrian couldn't see ghosts. I let out an heavy breath of relief. "Did he agree?" Asked Adrian inquisitively. I nodded giving him a quick smile. "Not here" he mouthed. "That's not good" I whispered looking down at my feet. no judgment. There was only curiosity in his eyes. he fought an household full of Strigoi. older than him. "ANYWAYS" I said concentrating my attention on Andree again. "But he is getting closer right?" Andre nodded. Well it was not like he risked that much by accepting anyways. "Will you help me?" Andre nodded. He was already deadly by himself. If Andre decided to leave because of him I'll kick his royal ass but Andre just shrugged it off dismissively with a look on his face that could easily be interpreted by a 'look-who-is-talking' face. "To some extent I guess." Andre looked at Adrian thoughtful. "Sorry dude but you know…Well it's ironic to find out that you are more helpful dead than alive" I shot him a death glare." Adrian was only a year older than Andre. There were not many things he had to afraid about since he was dead! "Dimitri is coming here and… and I need you to keep tab on his progression… Please. when they all doubted of my ability to see ghosts he never questioned my mental health. He then seemed to realize that Andre could hear him. "Do you know if he is already here?" Andre shook his head negatively. " 'No' you don't know? Or 'no' he is not here?" I asked losing my patience even if I knew it was not his fault. I couldn't help to wonder why he was still here. Andre looked at me for a second and the look on his face gave me his answer before he even shook his head. Dimitri was raising an army to come. He believed me. I…" I turned around and looked at Adrian who was looking from me to the apparent empty spot in front of me. "Is he coming alone?" I asked dreading the answer." I said feeling the blush on my cheeks.Andre nodded apparently accepting the task without even thinking about it. "I need them to be safe. even before. they probably met a lot during the officials parties and stuff. while injured!! . "Love?" Andre nodded. why didn't he move on to the other side like Mason did? What did he need to accomplish here? Andre pointed from Adrian to me and brought his hand to his heart. "Uh who would have thought that death would suit him…" Adrian chuckled "He was such an ass when he was alive.
That's okay we'll be ready. We decided that it would be Pavel. "More secrets Rose? Really?" He clacked his tongue reprovingly. I would probably be dating Adrian or at least seriously considering the option so…If people wanted to think it was the case than so be it." I put my ring back.. "Okay we'll keep it to ourselves until he comes up with essential info. "Okay. "It's a war right? He is coming with an army?" "Yes…I'm sorry" whispered Andre sadly before he started to flicker. Abe phoned me a couple of time in order to find out how the plan was advancing. Thank you. if I did manage to take down Dimitri. "So?" Asked Adrian and I walked back to him. so good to have someone who had faith in you. one of the secret service agent (passing for one of Abe guardian)." Andre nodded and disappeared. "Honestly it will only confuse Lissa to know that Andre is still around." "Yeah I guess" he conceded. it means that he is not at peace. as we had to organize everything while starting to take our final exams. "I know you are. Victor and me who would go retrieve Robert from Norway a few days before graduation." I said sincerely." Andre grimaced showing me that I was clearly underestimating this venue." I added but in fact I just didn't want Mark to open it and tell to everyone how dealing with the ghosts could be dangerous for someone like us or I would never hear the end of it. . "Plus there is no point to tell the others either as Andre didn't really say anything that we didn't already know. with the situation ahead. I knew what he said didn't stand on anything concrete but it was good to hear. "I know you love her…I'll keep her safe I promise. The next few days were pretty extreme. Do you think she needs to know something like that in the present situation? She is still pretty weakened by the whole Avery mess. "Oh by the way I would like to keep this little meeting a secret if you don't mind. And pointing to the Academy and to his heart." Andre gave me another small smile. the break up and the Dimitri's situation. "Everything will be alright my little dhampir" he said wrapping an arm around my shoulder kissing my forehead. "Thank you. We would actually go as soon as we "broke" Victor out of jail before he could even get the chance to figure out that it was just a set up." I kept my eyes on Andre now not wanting Adrian to see my distress. It's not that good but…" I shrugged "at least he is not in the US…yet." Said Adrian and I just noticed now that he still had his arm wrapped possessively around my shoulders as we walked back in the Academy. "Well. I understood now that trying to talk was draining a lot of energy from the ghosts.." Adrian narrowed his eyes suspiciously.I looked up again and nodded. For once I didn't even bother to shrug it off as I didn't care of what people could think about him and me. In another scenario. "OK I'll come back out in two days.
I kept her involvement to a strict minimum." Saying that made Christian snort with approval it was like a not so concealed 'no-shit?!!' and I shot him my death glare making the others laugh. I didn't want Lissa to get involved too much either." I asked looking at Adrian for confirmation. "It's almost as widely known as the fact that oxygen is essential for us to breath. "Victor is very bright. We were all confined in Adrian's bedroom where we had charts. She wanted first line…she was just as stupid as I was!! "Well the guy who is in love with her. "Usually it's the people in love who are doing the stupidest most radical things." I added feeling embarrassed for Adrian but he actually didn't seem embarrassed at all. "You'll need someone very good at compulsion. Well." We all looked at Oksana agape. I heard Lissa mutter a small cursed under her breath making me laugh. He nodded.I also asked Abe to see with the alchemist if they had any kind of potions that could help with the war ahead. "Now we need to figure something out to keep up the pretense for the prison evasion. maybe it would be possible to make him track me down somewhere else but right now we didn't know how that could be done. "And who is better than your best friend?!" asked Lissa literally marveling now. "Well not really" I said reluctantly as I didn't want to give arguments toward Lissa's option. Firstly I'll need to trust someone greatly to tell him/her my plan and well… I do have some serious trust issue. the return to the academy" I said as we decided to keep Victor and Robert here since we had no way to stop Dimitri from attacking anyways." "I know that…" I said biting my bottom lip looking at the big chart we had on the wall. He didn't sound too pleased to involve the. "Plus we need to pass the guardians anyways. and I quote. He was looking around in a 'yeah-what-else-is-new' kind of way. compel people or talk to ghosts. "I mean… he is not an idiot." Said Christian looking at the prison blueprints." Answered Oksana matter-of-factly pointing to Adrian." "And that Christian is a sarcastic smart mouth that can't shut it. Lissa wanted to hit her for mentioning that other option. "So we have the trip to Norway. "Believe me no secrets here" he said shaking his head. at least for now. "I'm a spirit user. Only the high judicial council and the Queen know about our plan right?." "Well if it's a human prison almost any Moroi would do" said Eddie with a slight shrug. "Plus that Moroi need to be close enough to me to risk his future and maybe get a lifetime in jail just to help me." I said thoughtfully. 'crazy religious bigots' in our plan but he agreed. Christian snorted again. "So compulsion is needed isn't it?" Asked Lissa and I could feel her excitation increasing. I'm sort of cocky enough to think we can pull it off and…and well what she said" he added pointing to Oksana. I even surprised myself to think of us like the team of Ocean's Eleven except that we were now 7 standing in that room and not specialists but I guessed that neither Brad nor George could control fire. "That's actually not a bad idea" said Adrian raising an eyebrow. "What?!" Asked Oksana looking from one to another "Please don't tell me it was a secret I mean…it's so obvious to me!! You didn't know?" she asked with worry in her voice. and even if I could feel the huge disapproval coming from her. blue prints and photos. it was our plan. .
if it get to this of course." "See you tomorrow" I said actually pleased to have an alchemist on our side "Bye Rose. "Hello?" I said warily. How are you doing?" "Well…I've got my next mission" said Sydney darkly. "Yes?" tried Lissa encouraging.. "But maybe…maybe" I concentrate on Lissa and her excitation level increased again. So…whenever he attacks. and I will not be able to do that if you're not safe" "I know…I know" she said with resignation. "Ok good so let get over this again" I said taking a deep breath. "Of course! What time?" "3pm at Missoula's airport." "Yeah??" I asked curiously "and what is it?" "Assisting you and the other creatures with potions and other tricks" she said but I could hear she was only mildly displeased." I said with a grin." "While we get ready here for whatever war is preparing" said Christian with his mischievous smile while showing the steady flame resting in the palm of his hand. "Backup" I replied with a wink. "So. "So you'll come pick me up or not?" she asked purposively avoiding the question. Chapter 13: . "Well the youngsters are released about a week before graduation anyways right?" I asked rhetorically. "And then --" I was cut off by my ringing phone. "You read my mind buddy. "You missed me eh?" I asked and I saw jealousy in Adrian's eyes even if he was doing his best to hide it. "You remember what we talked about? I need you to help but from a secure spot. "Eddie. Adrian and me will go to the jail to retrieve Victor. Guard X and me jump into Abe jet where Pavel will be waiting and go straight to Norway. He was the only one brave enough to ask." it will go to this I added to myself. I frowned answering it as I just talked to Abe about an hour before." She said and hanged up before I even had a chance to say bye.who was it?" Asked Christian.. She knew I was about to give her a mission." I burst into laugher attracting 6 pairs of curious eyes on me." I said like I was talking to a child. "Hey my favorite crazy bigot." "I can try" said Lissa not really convinced but she was ready to everything. "Well we'll have fewer casualties to worry about. "What if you could slightly persuade Kirova to let them go like even a week before that. "I need you to pick me up from the airport tomorrow."You'll play your part Liss you know that right. "Then we split Adrian and Eddie go back to the academy as Victor. I need to concentrate on the task ahead only." They nodded. "Hello evil creature of the night.
"Thank you for coming with me." I said to Adrian as we took off for our 3 hours drive to Missoula airport. "Spending 6 hours in a confined space with you? It's my pleasure." I rolled my eyes but smiled looking at the countryside I already knew by heart. Adrian was the one who managed to borrow a car. They probably figured that, with his bank account, he could easily repay it if we had an accident. So he was driving, but even if I was not going to acknowledge it out loud, he was driving very well and I felt very safe with him. "So the girl we are picking up… She can help you?" He asked more seriously shooting me a quick glance. "Maybe… I'm not sure." I slightly shrugged. "She is an alchemist and--" "An alchemist?" He asked but the surprise made him swerve a little. "Hey!" I said reaching for the steering wheel. "Sorry… Sorry" he said quickly "but…" he looked at me again probably to make sure it was not a joke. "You can understand that… I mean she is one of these bigots and she is about to enter the lair of darkness." I had to laugh at that. "Yeah well it would be good not to mention that to her" I said reaching up to pat his arm without thinking. He smiled "And why is that?" "Well Sydney is pretty decent really. She is a bigot yeah, she has a pretty bad opinion of us but she has a good heart." I smiled remembering how she felt bad for me after she discovered my relationship with Dimitri. "I see... So you say she is the less bigot in the bigotry group." "Something like that. So maybe… well you know how much I like your personality but maybe you could just ummmm…tame a bit the whole cocky, flirty attitude when you'll be around her. I mean, " I chuckled "we don't need to fuel her whole theory of us being creatures of darkness." Adrian stayed quiet for a minute probably pondering that. "Well if you don't want to scare the girl maybe she shouldn't meet Christian without supervision." I laughed out loud and it felt good to laugh. "Yeah you've got a point." "I mean even I, full creature of darkness, think Christian can be creepy at times." He added grimacing. "Yeah I know he doesn't make a very good first impression" I conceded. "Or a second, or a third…" Adrian added trailing off. "Yeah... But once you get through all this cockiness, snarkiness and sullen attitude Christian is…" What could I say really. "Christian is… a very good person." "Yeah… You guys grew a lot closer in the last 6 weeks, It's something that was impossible to miss." Said Adrian probably trying to sound nonchalant but failing miserably. I looked at his profile silently as he was driving. "Are...you're not jealous right?" I asked as it would be totally absurd.
"Should I be?" He asked quickly glancing at me. "No! Of course not!" I said almost shocked. He nodded silently. Here we go again I thought groaning silently. "If I ever were to date anyone it…" I took a deep breath "it would be you." I said simply looking away as I didn't want to see his reaction. After what seemed an eternity, but probably wasn't more than 2 or 3 minutes "It's…" Adrian clear his throat. "It's good to know." He said and I could hear the underlying emotions in his voice. "Uh huh…." I said still looking out the window. "I…" he started but never finished his sentence. I was pretty sure he was about to tell me he loved me and I was grateful he didn't because I couldn't reciprocate. The rest of the trip was pretty silent we only talked every so often about very trivial things like the weather forecast or the possible colors of the graduation gowns. When we finally made it to Missoula airport we both sighed with relief at the exact same time, making us laugh. "We are not good with all that are we?" I asked getting out of the car. "Well actually you are the one who's not good with all that my little dhampir" he said resting his hand lightly on the small of my back as we walked in the airport. "I'm just wary about what I'm saying as I'm scared you'll run off any minute if I say something I shouldn't" he added and it didn't seem to bother him more than that. He was just stating a fact. "And I really appreciate that." I said sincerely. He was giving me the time and space I needed. "I know you do" he said now looking at the big arrivals board. "Oh I got it," he pointed to the board. "Flight 2543 Gate 2. They should land in 10 minutes." I looked around and started to walked down toward Gate 2. As soon as we sat down, in front of the door, he took my hand mechanically and I didn't take it back. It was nice, and if it was what he wanted, I could at least concede that much. Adrian looked down at our intertwined fingers for a while and I couldn't help to look too. It was funny how our hands could reflect all the differences between us. His pale white skin clashed with my dark gold tanned skin that I acquired spending so much time in the sun. His fingers were long and delicate, his hands were wide but flawless. His skin was soft and no scars or burns were damaging them. My hands were petite but strong, my skin was covered with little scars and as much as I hydrated them my palms were slightly callous due to the number of hours I spent training and fighting. Yeah…we couldn't be more different I thought still looking down. I looked up but Adrian was still looking down, he was now tracing patterns on the back of my hand with his empty hand. "What are you thinking about?" I asked gently squeezing his hand. He looked up to meet my eyes, his emerald eyes darker than usual. "I was looking at our hands and thinking how we are completing each other. The light and the darkness, day and night." He smiled and shook his head. "Silly I know… What about you?"
"I…" I smiled. "I was thinking that we needed to have a video camera for when Sydney will meet Christian." I could see in Adrian's eyes that he didn't buy it but he was nice enough not to comment. I smiled again and leaned in to kiss the tip of his nose. It was not a romantic kiss per say, but it was a bit more intimate than a kiss on the cheek. It was actually exactly our 'status' right now: more than friends but far away from dating. As soon as my lips connected with his nose I heard a 'urgh' sound coming from my right than a little 'I'm going to puke' I laughed. "Hi Sydney" I said turning to see her. "It's nice to have you here." She was dressed with a pair of black dressing pants, a yellow button down shirt and her hair were tight in a very strict bun. That was Sydney alright. I stood up and hugged her. She hugged me back awkwardly. "I'm sorry for interrupting your…PDA." She said looking at Adrian through narrow eyes. She didn't like Moroi and didn't hide it. Adrian stood up and came to stand beside me. "Don't worry about it" he said with his usually cocky grin. "I'm your chauffeur Miss Daisy" he added with a small bow. "My name is Adrian Ivashkov" he said over politely "you can call me Lord of Darkness." He said winked at me. "It's how you youngsters are calling Dracula nowadays right?" I gave his a chastising look. I did warn him! Argh! Sydney threw him a dark look "Fine…Lestat." She said frostily. "Come on Sydney lets go." I said taking her bag on the floor. "How is the red hurricane doing by the way?" I asked and it was enough to make her speak for a good hour. We were about half an hour away from the Academy when the silence started to weight. I turned around to look at Sydney on the back seat and smiled. She smiled back. "So where will I sleep? With you right?" She asked hopeful. I opened my mouth to say that she will have her own room in the guest pavilion but I closed it again. She had trouble to sleep the first nights with me…She would never be able to rest in a building full of Moroi. "I... yeah. We can arrange that of course." I said trying to figure how I would manage to move in the guest building with her but I knew that I could sweet talk Alberta and I needed to tell the truth to my mother anyways… lots of shouting there I thought grimacing. Adrian probably noticed my discomfort because he raised one eyebrow and said " you are going to sleep together? Uh…. Can I watch?" and it did the trick, I burst into laugher. "In your dreams Lestat!" Snapped Sydney. "I wouldn't say that if I were you" I said still laughing, knowing Adrian ability to dream walk. Sydney looked at me puzzled, I just shook my head dismissively. "So except the super vanishing potion, do you have anything else Strigoi related that can help me?" I asked trying to change the subject. Sydney discreetly glanced at Adrian. "I'll tell you about that later ok?"
"But you love me just as I am. "Oh just one thing you can be as rude as you want with Adrian and even Christian. Each player had to know it all. She'll have to talk in front of them. . "Do. "I trust him with my life. "It's going to be tough for Alberta to swallow that one. I…I will not tolerate rudeness toward her. I nodded without a word. "Him and all my friends" I added quickly not to mislead her. I knew Sydney well enough to know she was going to freak out when I'd mention the jail break because…organized or not. "We never know maybe I can go sell those secrets to the KGB. Do you know why you're here?" "Well not really" she admitted. "Ooooo we wouldn't want to talk in front of the big evil Moroi" he said with laugher in his voice.. "Yeah well…Just try to be nice with Lissa please" I said locking eyes with her. When we made it to the Academy I told Adrian that I was going to see Kirova with Sydney and to tell the other I'll see them as soon as I could. "Asshole!" I said looking away." Said Adrian keeping his eyes on the road." "Christian?" She asked quizzically. "I'll tell you everything tonight" I said as I knew she would be far more comfortable with me explaining everything to her if it was just the two of us.Adrian chuckled. "I'm sorry" mumbled Adrian quickly glancing at Sydney in the mirror." I said calmly reaching for his right hand on the steering wheel and brushed its back softly. "I'll be on my best behavior" she said lips pursed. "Oh you were serious?…Of course you can!" He said trying to backtrack but it was too late. you are just going to love each other!" said Adrian marveling and I couldn't stop my playful smile." I simply stated." "That's about right. I really didn't need to encourage his behavior but he was always good at amusing me." I said sincerely. "I mean why on earth would an alchemist show up to stay here?" "I can have friends outside of the Academy!" I tried. I just grunted. "They said that you needed me for something pretty big. "Oh yeah. "But well you'll see. "Right!!" He glanced at my face and probably saw the indignation. I sighed." He said teasing." She snorted but didn't comment. they are all fantastic… in their own ways. Adrian burst into laugher. "Thanks" I said deciding to ignore the coldness." "Stop it please. "She is very sensitive and one of the nicest person I ever met. That could change everything but that I won't end up in jail. But I wasn't really mad and he knew it. she won't see it with a good eye. "You can talk in front of him you know" I said turning a bit more on my seat to have a better look at her." Said Adrian completely ignoring Sydney presence now and I thought she was grateful for that. probably tomorrow.
" "I'm not going to shout…Come on tell me" she said and I could see she was doing her best to control herself. "Rose come on. I took a deep breath and told her everything in one go. "No we're not dating but…" I gave her a quick sideway glance. "I know you are preparing something but…For a Alchemist to get involved it has to be big. "See you later Jesus. My mom walked us quietly to an empty lounge upstairs. "You're going to be mad."Yep. I think you couldn't be suspicious with me…the little heroin. Just after they brought the bed in the room Sydney started to tell about the Strigoi related potions. "I'm the one who should ask that." There were a light knock at my door. I nodded "yeah. She locked the door behind us and came to sit beside me. It might turn out to be useful one day. As expected Kirova was very curious on why I invited an alchemist to stay here and how we became friends in the first place but she accepted to bring a second bed in my room. "We never know. I couldn't fool her and I knew that." She just glared at his retreating form. ." She said with slight exasperation like I was underestimated her.." I opened my mouth but said nothing. she was very cordial with her." she ask nonchalantly as we walked to Kirova office. I introduced Sydney to her.." He kiss my forehead quickly. "See you later Rose…" he turned to Sydney.I'll be back in a few" I said to Sydney." I looked at her with confusion. "Well the one to attract strigoi is pretty stupid" she said emptying her small bag in my half empty dresser. "I don't know what I thought" she added finally." "I'm not going to get mad" she said patiently. "Don't worry about it" she said dismissively." She said simply I didn't know what she thought about it. "So?" I asked sinking on the sofa." "Right. and to my surprise.." I said laughing "Are you dating? I thought…. "Don't mind him. very big. "Rose can I see you 5 minutes please?" She asked pointing at the door. before I lost all my courage. "He is very important to me. "You're going to shout…a lot. It turned out to be my mother.
" "Yeah I bet" I said actually astonished that she didn't made my ears bleed with her shouting. I could see she expected a lot." Adrian stayed quiet for a long time." She shook her head. "Adrian did convince them" I said looking straight into her eyes. "Do you even know how dangerous it was for you to do that boy?" She asked but she was not mad just worried." My mom unlocked the door and I could see she was still lost in her thoughts." She said standing up. "Told you what?" "About you convincing the High Judicial committee for Victor." "Well" I shrugged slightly coking my head on the side. but that was not the case. Boy?! Lissa and I thought simultaneously." She padded my shoulder. "Even if you had proofs on tape. "It's impossible" she finally said quietly after 5 long minutes.When I was done she just stared at me. "I…" She sighed before looking at the forest painting on the wall." Adrian stayed quiet. "He did…that?" I nodded silently. "Tomorrow… yes. Her powers were really increasing with Oksana's help. so long that Lissa was considering showing herself. my mother never called anyone like that. "Don't you think I know that?" He asked sounding resigned. since it was way past curfew. She was crouched behind Adrian's small kitchen counter but she was not afraid. "What is?" "Convincing the Judicial board to let Victor Dashkov out even under supervision. I knew she was not really looking at it. "Rose told me everything" said my mother so calm it surprised me. she was just uncomfortable. I couldn't see them from where Lissa was hiding but I could hear them clearly enough. "How on ---" She stopped her eyes widening with understanding. "So what are we going to do now?" Asked Sydney when we got ready for the night. "Now? Well…We're going to get ready for the war ahead" I said trying to sound far more confident than I actually felt. "We'll… talk about that another time I need time to absorb it all. "It's…Go back to your friend Rose before she starts worrying. Both Lissa and him decided it was better for her to hide than to explain her presence in the room. but scanning her mind I could see she came up because she was curious about Sydney and our friendship. "But why?? You know it's not helping her and yourself to go in this crazy plan. She was not supposed to be there. I was about to drift into sleep when I felt myself being pulled into Lissa's head. "I'll see you tomorrow. Adrian and her had just started to chat when my mother came in. she could now almost summon me on purpose. .
" She shrugged "Don't sweat it Rose." I simply said." I could hear the loud intake of air. I could never choose anyone over Dimitri and the resignation in his voice hurt me. "I…I need to talk with Oksana." "Yeah with your friend Lissa following us everywhere" She said nonchalantly settling more comfortably in the bed while reaching for the book she was reading…The Hunger Games. she will choose him and you--" "I'm irrelevant" he said quickly. "Lissa…Lissa is my best friend. "Yeah… I'll be better in the morning. that nobody could take her place in my heart. "Pita? It's some kind of bread right. "Are you ok?" She asked uncomfortably. If she wasn't sure by now." I said evasively tightening my training shoes." Said Sydney and I knew she was just saying that because she was not comfortable to stay by herself. "I'll be back soon I promise. Chapter 14: "Where are you going?" Asked Sydney already in bed. "Never mind. See you later. She was silly of course but it would have been pointless to tell her. "But it's past curfew. "I don't want her to settle for me… I want her to choose me" He said and I could hear the sadness in his voice. pretty much. perfect and human" "Who?" I asked confused. to stop her from doing something that would destroy everything…destroy her. that she was my best friend. "I need to have a word with her in private" I said before Sydney did even get the chance to get out of bed." "But have you considered the possibility that it might work and if it does. I added to myself. "I can try to keep her safe. I've got company" she said nudging her book." I just hate hurting the guy that owns only enough of my heart to hurt us both. Funnily enough Christian was on his best behavior when Sydney was around even if I knew the very low opinion he had about alchemists but I guessed he didn't want to make the situation any more difficult and I really appreciated that. "You know Rose as well as I do. I nodded quietly. there wasn't much I could say to convince her. But it was true that Lissa was very jealous of me having another girl friend. yet again. I rolled my eyes but she didn't see it. "But we've spent the whole day with them…the whole week really. It has been a week now that she was at the Academy and she almost refused to leave the room and when she did it was to." She said almost whining. He knew that it would never happen. Sydney was looking at me quietly with concern all over her face. "And night seems to be the only time. you know how much Belikov means to her. Christian even called her my 'creepy shadow' because she was always glued to me. reluctantly following me to Adrian's room. I turned around and smiled at her. "Since when do I follow rules?" I asked rhetorically."I had no choice" said Adrian in a hushed tone." She sighed. "Peeta is loving. She made him a promise and she was going to find someway to try to save him with or without me and I would rather be a part of it." . I got out of Lissa's head and realized silent tears were falling down my cheeks.
Mark opened the door almost immediately. Sydney had shared with us a potion that enhanced the psychic abilities of the spirit users making them two to three time stronger but we decided to keep it secret as it could corrupt. "So you see Andre told me today that Dimitri just arrived to Alaska right. I was slightly above the rules. spat it out after the first gulp saying that nothing tasting that bad could do any good and he rather turn crazy than drink something that tasted like ass and after tasting it myself…I had to agree with him. Lissa was happy enough to use it every once in a while. even if some of the guardians and Moroi on service were more easy on me. "I guess…" she said warily. were almost seen as guardians now. it was useless to try to have a secret. the fire and all that. and us novice. I looked at both of them and decided to play it straight. The healing ring. I didn't want to run into my mother." I said simply walking out. and even if we parted about 4 hours ago. as I already noticed earlier.I felt like I was their adopted kid or something. We were right in the middle of the exams. They were a couple and…oh Hell. "Rose!" He said as a big smile spread on his face. "Please come in!" I walked in and found Oksana sat at the table with her usual herbal tea." They nodded "and I was thinking…Magic does influence Strigoi to some level. "I needed to talk to you in private" I said sitting in front of her. He was not even in PJs yet." "I bet you are" said Mark sitting beside her. "Hey Rose!!" Said Oksana with the same big smile as Mark. Plus. I knocked quietly enough so they wouldn't hear it if they were sleeping. She wouldn't let me go without exactly knowing why. She looked at me for a second and decided that fighting me was not worth it. 'Private' included Mark as she was even more linked to him than Lissa and I were so." "Yeah…" said Oksana trailing off. . Adrian. Power always corrupted people. When I made it to Oksana and Marks' room I got a little uncomfortable to disturb them. "I'm intrigued now. It was funny how him and Oksana were always happy to see me . I jogged as discreetly as possible to the guest dorms because. "Oh really?" she said raising an eyebrow. "I know but it's important" I said head high locking eyes with her to show that I wasn't joking around. "Miss Hathaway…It's past curfew" said the matron as I reached the exit. It smelled terrible and tasted even worse but it helped her channel her energy. Oksana just drank 1/8th of the dose and she was powerful enough to take me into Christian mind without burning energy. I could see that his pleasure was genuine. "And you know the potion that help enhance psychic abilities is pretty efficient isn't it?" I tried perfectly knowing the answer to that one."Yeah. "Okay I wanted to know if you could enter Dimitri's mind" I blurt out. "Make it fast" she simply said concentrating on her magazine again.
traitors and we're going to bring Victor back at the Academy?" I grimaced. One day. "Well I want you to take me in his mind as you took me in Christians' mind at the try out. it will be our ground. "Maybe he is planning to recruit more 'soldiers' on his way over here. to know what they can do." "Yeah but it's very dangerous Rose." I shook my head. "We'll have the advantage there. I mean imagine it doesn't work? He'll attack the Academy but none of us will be there to keep it safe. "it's crazy Rose it will never work." "Why?" . "Avery could influence mind and if the potion can make you more powerful maybe you could influence a Strigoi mind… it's not like they are not sensitive to magic. What do you want me to do?" I bit my bottom lip. "Dimitri won't take anyone to attack the Academy." "Yeah…I thought about that too" Said Mark." I locked eyes with him. I nodded. "It's pretty moronic. It was Oksana's decision to take and he respected that." "So what's your plan?" Asked Oksana. "If I was Victor I would have doubts if you brought me back here. "My point is that if he is coming only with 4 other Strigoi it's because he knows how to attack and the Academy is huge…We have too much ground to cover. Dimitri…Dimitri is not the kind to attack recklessly and I know he is the same alive or undead. "Ok let's just talk hypothetically here… if I could get in." I kept looking at them into the eyes to show them that I was sure." Simply stated Oksana. She sighed heavily." "I don't see your point. after training." He insisted. "Well I wanted to go in his mind and just change one of his memory of us. he asked me what did Lissa and I had planned for graduations. Oksana looked at me silently but I could see in her eyes that she was thinking at hundred miles per hour. "I want you to implant a memory in there. which I doubt I could." "Maybe…" Said Oksana unconvinced. I…I just want him to think I told him that Lissa and I planned to go and spend the week before graduation in the Lodge her parents had in Badlands National Park in North Dakota. He knows something that we don't. Mark kept quiet and I was grateful for that." "You want to attract him there. "He only came with 4 other Strigoi and it's a very small group to attack the Academy which means he has a plan."What?!" They both said in total sync. He needs to trust them to some extent." "Why?" Tried Mark. "Plus I was thinking about it and we're supposed to be criminals." I said feeling more and more idiotic. "Andre can keep us posted on that and…" Oksana shook her head vigorously. "I want him to attack somewhere else." She said worried." She opened her mouth to say something but I quickly continued to talk.
" I pointed at myself. I looked at her hopeful. "So he will call the Academy you think?" Mark asked. two weeks before graduation. "So you want us to implant that memory and try to influence him into calling you?" She summarized. . I don't know him. "As for a link to him well…I'm the best bet." She said taking my hands." Oksana took the little bottle containing the gold color potion and drank half of it. it will amuse him to torture me like that "I added not able to conceal the pain in my voice. "It's like the most important of them all."Why?!" She snorted. "I… exactly. It was about 3 times more than what she drank for the Christian experiment.yeah if it works. "And how do I do that?" I asked suddenly worried that I would fail. "And I know Dimitri." She looked at Mark. I'm probably the only thing that could still affect him. there is nothing to link me to him. it was painful to remember our happy moments. "I want him to think he promised to support me and wish me luck the morning of the Gladiators' day. Oksana reached for my hand and squeezed it. if he had this memory he would contact me. "Why not…. "Can you get me the little bottle with the rest of potion?" Mark nodded and squeezed my shoulder as he passed behind me. to tell me how he was keeping his promise. "If it worked he will yeah. "What do you want to do?" "Well I was thinking that we could go back to the day when we were both making snow angels. I almost forgot he was here. He will want to keep this promise he made to me. it was a moment where connected…." "Gladiators' day?" Asked Oksana confused. I nodded." "So…It's tomorrow!" Said Oksana.. It's worth about 80% of your physical training.worth the try. it's maybe better to get him away from the Academy." "So you want to see if we can temper with his memory?" She asked me wearily. "Yeah it's the last physical exams for the dhampirs. "Ok…We can try." My voice became thicker." "Yeah and you see it happens on the same day every year depending on the Academy you are attending of course and here it's the Friday. "You'll have to guide me to his mind Rose. "Well you pick your favorite…I never tried to enter the mind of Strigoi before and you told me that Dimitri was very powerful." I sighed with relief." She finally conceded.." She jugged her bottom lip and shrugged slightly." Said Mark coming back to sit beside me. when he held me captive. He seemed to make a point of it. And they'll transfer him to my cell. The only thing that was still keeping him attached. Moreover. he is far and there is no way to be sure it worked!!" "Maybe we can just give it a try as for something to link to him. "Maybe. I didn't want to sound full of myself but I knew I was his only weakness now.
He was thinking about me. He probably didn't acknowledge it himself but he did love me. probably as much as he did before. We knew you two were in love we just…. but it was overshadowed by all the evil and darkness. spooning me as to keep me safe. "Piece of cake" I said standing up trying to joke. "Now we wait and see. I suddenly felt a cold breeze fill my body." She quickly glanced at Mark probably trying to find the right words. "Why would you be sorry for?" I asked naively. I also thought on how he held me in bed when he was a Strigoi. She probably thought I was a freak. Our time in the cabin. He hated them because they had that part of me I didn't give away willingly. I nodded still feeling all the coldness in Dimitri but I couldn't help loving me.Gladiators' day?" She asked with a sad smile. He didn't want to kill me. He doesn't think anyone could be powerful enough to do that. a wacko when she realized all the love I still had for him. I could feel it deep down inside of him. "Even if it doesn't work. He is not protecting his mind right now. the first time I read through his pretense. the first time he hint on the love he felt for me. I saw the first time we kissed. how he defended me against Nathan and Galina. he actually never even intended to. "I'm sorry" she added in a breath." She held my hands tightly. "Nobody can comprehend the love you had…still have. Said Oksana directly in my mind. "We never even guessed the extent of that love." She said in a hush tone. you tried!" "No I'm sorry for you two Rose. I closed my eyes starting to go over some of my moments with Dimitri. He considered that they had stolen me from him and he was coming here to claim me back. . We don't want him to figure it out and block his mind. what did you call it-. I don't want to hit to strong. almost freezing my bones. He tried to fight that part of him but he couldn't. he knew everything.We were in. I could bet he saw my memories as Oksana was seeing them." "Yeah you need your sleep if you want to be ready for."I don't know" she shrugged slightly." She said nicely. He wanted me by his side. I was ashamed of that of course but I just did. "It IS a love worth fighting for. That woman was good to the core. eyes closed. my family. I could feel the pain and hatred and desire to revenge…. happy moments. I opened my eyes slowly and met her concerned gaze. Oksana was so powerful it amazed me. "Think about moments you shared. Even…while he held you captive. I chose them over him and he intended to make them pay. I was his and he was mine but he wanted to kill the others…my friends. Mark quickly looked down at the table. "I…I need to get back. She managed to slip through his memories with almost no effort. undeniable. For him." I chewed on my bottom lip. It was clear in his mind. I was a bit embarrassed knowing that Oksana could see them too but I knew she would never judge me." She shook her head. I'm implanting the memory now and I'll try to give him the impulse to call you like…an encouragement. how he was about to make me his. I gasped keeping my eyes close. "I sure hope so" I said in a whisper more for myself than anyone else really. the 'I love you's' after that. After a couple more minutes Oksana's hands relaxed and she let go of mine.
he is trying to get back what we had in his dark and twisted way. But he had to understand that one day it might be too late and that he should enjoy being with Lissa while he could. "What are you doing here?" "I needed to ask you something but 'creepy shadow' told me you left for a while. Chapter 15: My phone beeped. "You want to know what's wrong?" He nodded. you know how easily you can lose it and what do you guys do? Give up!! I…. I'm so mad at you two I could just scream! You see me fighting to have my love back. "There is no need to deny it Chris I saw your mind remember. eyes still closed. Seeing you waste what I'm working so hard to get back!" And without another word I swirled around and rushed into the building. I could see in his eyes that he didn't expect me to go there. It was a bit awkward for me but it felt nice too. "Call her Sydney! You're not helping you know. "What's wrong Rose?" He asked warily." I nodded curtly. It needed to be said!! I thought as guilt started to creep in me. "Hello…" I answered sleepily. I was walking back to my room still shaken by the little visit in Dimitri's mind." I snapped "I…" Christian looked hurt it had been so long since I snapped at him. "Rose…" He started resignedly. That's what make me sick. I hated hurting him. . "Nothing worth living come easy Christian and you know that." He said grinning. "Hey!" "Christian?" I asked dumbfounded seeing him exiting my dorm. I was positive that his love for me was still inside somewhere…how would I ever be able to plunge my stake into his heart now? I sighed heavily as I reached the building. "Really??" He nodded again. "What's wrong is… You know how much I love Dimitri right?" Christian frowned slightly confused. "It's not that---" "Don't say 'easy' because I swear I hurt you!" I said and I realized I meant it.Both Oksana and Mark hugged me tight. he didn't deserve it. I hated to have snapped at Christian like that. Now it would be even harder to kill him if I had to." I shook my head "and when I see two people that love each other so much" I said pointing at him. evil as he is." I threw my hands in the air in surrender. They were good people. "Even him. "I love him so much and even now I'm ready to do everything to have our love back even…" I gulped as a lump of tears had formed in my throat. "I just wanted to know if the potion to enhance power could work on me too…She said we'll give it a try tomorrow if you're ok with it.
"I'm too far from you Rose. "That's right" he said and I could hear the smile in his voice." He said seriously. I looked at my phone for a while. willing or not. I wanted to know if he would play with me or if he was confident enough to tell me the truth. remember." I said trying to sound as nonchalant than I could. giving you what I know you are craving but I'll come eventually. his barely hidden threats… That was hard to bear. you wouldn't want to put your mentor to shame would you?" He said teasingly. I wish I could be beside you. "What does 'hurting' mean really? It's all subjective Roza." "I--" "Sleep well Roza. The smile his Strigoi self bored most of the time… the one I hated to the core." I said in a low voice keeping my eyes locked on Sydney who was still sleeping soundly. you'll always be mine and I'll always be yours and that can't ever change" He said emotionless like he was reading the news. "I'll hurt anyone getting in our way. looking at the ceiling trying to swallow back the tears because he was right. "I'm not worried."I'm sorry to wake you up in the middle of the night Roza but I wanted to wish you good luck. "Do you remember the snow angels?" "Of course I do." He said and even if the words were nice they still managed to sound like a threat. of course he was right! "But I presume you mean physically." "Then. "Was that who I thought it was?" She asked calmly. "You told me that you would be there for me to support me during Gladiators' day. It was good I knew that. "I unfortunately can't be there with you but you need to know that you're in my mind… always. I turned to put the phone back on my nightstand when I crossed Sydney's eyes fixed on me. It worked!! I'll be damned! "Yes Roza it's me. It meant that Oksana could tamper with his brain enough to probably make him change the place he wanted to target his attack. you're gifted in almost everything we tried together. He knew it hurt me to revisit our rare but precious memories and I was sure he was doing it on purpose." "Dimitri…" I whispered as my eyes shot open. ." That little remark made me blush furiously." He said with his velvety voice and I could imagine his cold smile. "I'm with you in your heart. I always keep my promises. "Where are you?" I asked even if I perfectly knew the answer." He said cutting me off and the line went dead. in that bed." He continued as I kept quiet. He chuckled. "What did I tell you in the snow that day?" he invited me to continue. you promised to never hurt me…" I whispered stupidly. "Dimitri…" I only repeated as I was scared to say too much and have him figure it all out. I nodded. I turned to lay on my back. "Do your best today. but hearing his voice. "I'll see you Roza… Just so you know. in your head…in your soul" he said huskily.
"You need to be careful Rose" she said sighing heavily. Now win or lose…there were no turning back. I hugged her tightly." "But it's different this time I won't be alone and…and Victor knows how serious you are about the rules. "No I know you're not. "I'll be with some deadly guardians! Pavel and the guys from the Secret Services and most of the Moroi there will be more powerful than ever!" I said as we realized that Sydney's potion was also working on Christian making him one hell of a flamethrower." She said simply turning around to go back to sleep. "Think again Rose!!" "I won't be in danger Ma" I said soothingly. She was pretty poised so it made us all confident. She sighed. she was probably trying to conceal her emotions. "You don't understand Rose but…but I realized all the mistakes I made as far as you are concerned and I won't make them all over again. "I got it Rose I'm not that stupid!" She said somehow offended that I mentioned something that evident. Lissa probably did 'help' a bit there but I wasn't sure and I didn't want to ask. "Earth to Rose. I promise." She said trying to sound just very sure but her voice was huskier. it's just…" I took a deep breath. "You have to understand that I can't lose you ok? I… I just can't allow that to happen…ever." "Good. "I… Yeah. "You can go home now" I said gently. "It means that. You would never willingly risk you career and mine for something that trivial." Said Sydney as I was getting ready for what could be my last day at the Academy. . it will be impossible to fool him." My mom pursed her lips with disapproval but I could see in her eyes that she was surrendering. Kirova didn't mind letting us leave for a week since there were no exams left or anything like that. She didn't want to let me go alone. "With you there." "You better…or else" she said hugging me back fiercely. "You know about tomorrow…" I said trailing off. The next week was really crazy as we were putting the final touches to our plan. "I'll come back mom."What does that mean Rose?" She asked with concerned. the odds are in our favor. from now on. "What about it?" She asked sitting on her bed. She knew I was right but it didn't mean she had to like the idea and I could see that she hated it. "It will be dangerous…VERY dangerous" I said sitting on my own bed so we faced each other." I said shaking my head as remembering this intimate moment with my mother brought tears in my eyes. meeting a deadly Strigoi while I stay here…safe at the Academy??" She shook her head angrily." I said sincerely. "Do you really think I'll let you go there. she wanted to come. My mom had been a lot harder to convince. Oksana drank a full potion this time and made sure the memory was really well implanted in Dimitri's mind.
He quickly glanced to Lissa to show me that he understood. I just want to be there I mean…" she grinned "I went through like 2 weeks of super boring preparation putting on with Ivashkov's idiotic behavior… I want to share the spotlight. "Ok guys I know I'll see you two in two days but…" I looked at them both sitting patiently on Lissa's bed looking at me with both concern and confidence. "And you be safe ok? Nothing is worth you being .She looked at me silently for a minute and I could see anger and rejection in her face. I promise. and I quote." "It's reckless and stupid you know that right?" I asked more rhetorically than anything else. They trusted my judgment but couldn't help being worried about what was about to happen. She had been raised with the idea that every single person in our world was evil and dangerous so of course she knew how dangerous it would be. I sighed and rolled my eyes but didn't comment. probably not really sleeping getting ready for their own plane very early in the morning to go to Lissa's cabin. "Always" he said and I could hear the underlying emotion in his voice. "You take care ok?" I asked locking eyes with Christian for him to understand I meant 'you take care of her'. The others would spend the night at the Academy. one hell of a compliment! Today we were all tense on different levels. She didn't want me to change my mind and send her away. I…" I sighed and went to sit beside her. dangerous or not. you're my friend and I want to be there. "Everything will be alright you know" I said with a sad smile. "But you'll have to stay hidden you know that right? Not with me but with the Moroi and other dhampirs. We needed the daylight as a weapon to get Victor out of Jail. I could feel that Lissa was doing her best to fight back her tears. even if none of us worded our fears and doubts out loud. and once you knew our little group enough." She nodded "I know and it's all good. "I hate for the people I care about to get involved in what I'm about to do Sydney and I know you will not want to stay here without me and I hate the idea to have you there on the front line with no way to defend yourself. Sydney was on board now. Abe's plane would be here tonight to pick me up along with Adrian and Eddie. She just smiled. Sydney went to stay with Oksana and Mark that night since she couldn't stay in my dorm room with me but she was on her best behavior." I sighed in capitulation. She even went there with a smile on her lips…scariest thing ever! That night just before I went to go meet Eddie and Adrian at the plane. Mark and Oksana were." She narrowed her eyes slightly with suspicion but relaxed almost immediately. It was too late to do that anyways. "Now that you've gotten everything you needed from the alchemists you send me away…" she snorted "and I thought we were friends!" "But we are!" I said offended "that's why I'm trying to keep you safe. I'm just trying to protect you Syd. 'kind of ok to hang around' which was. She knew it was silly as we'd be apart for only two days and what I was doing was not that dangerous but she didn't like us being separated. "Yeah but that's the point. I was stubborn but I was no match to Sydney and I knew that. "I see…" She said nodding. no matter what. for Sydney. I quickly stopped by the Moroi dorm and took Christian over to Lissa's room in order to say goodbye to them. I thought that telling her she would have to stay almost two days without me might make her change her mind but she told me that Lissa. you could see what the main concerns were.
I still had trouble to express my feelings but I decided to work on that later…if I had a later. "Don't forget what you told me Ivashkov" said my mother louder before Pavel could close the door. He just stood up hugging me fiercely. You are so brave and fearless. "I'll see you in two days. we have it all planned. Just be safe and come back. "Just come back to me Rose… Whatever happens. Her face was grim and hard probably trying to keep her emotions in order. A real fighter! I couldn't have dreamed for a better daughter. I kissed Lissa's forehead. I could see her eyes glint slightly. I presumed it was the emotion that kept her from talking louder. I ran to the runway where my mom was waiting for me. "Mom." She said barely louder than a whisper." I said letting go of her. I…I love you guys. I was probably more of a masochist than I even thought I was because I did miss him. She smiled at me and gently removed a strand of hair from my face. I would never leave Adrian or Eddie behind. "I'm so proud of you Rose. I just hugged her burying my face into her chest. I couldn't say anything. "Come on Liss give me a---" My phoned beeped. "It will be alright mom. giving my mother and I the couple of minutes we needed. "Never!" Said Adrian who was sitting in the back of the plane. she had tears in her eyes and it hurt me deep in my chest. everything that could have been said would have sounded all wrong and I knew that." I said not able to conceal my smile. I could feel relief through the bond meaning that Lissa bought it but I could see in Christian's eyes that he didn't buy it for a second but he was kind enough not to word his doubts. we can work it out. "I'll see you soon. "Hello?" "Come on! Hathaway where the hell are you?" barked Pavel." I smiled back and walked into the plane. ." I said taking her hand. I frowned slightly with confusion but I knew I would find out eventually.hurt if anything…anything at all doesn't turn out right you just run as fast and as far as you can. "We're ready and waiting!" "I'll be right over. "I'll do my best" I whispered back kissing him soundly on the cheek. I would rather give my life saving them." he whispered to my ear. I could see Pavel in the shadow of the plane door but he didn't say anything. "Please be careful. ok?" "Of course!" I said with a smile but I knew that it was probably one of the biggest lies I'd ever told." I said as I exited the room." I whispered stopping in front of her.
"Hey Buddy!!" I said as cheerily as I could. "As ready as I can be. I would have needed at least 3 Dimitri's to make one like him and my Dimitri was already broad shouldered. "My friends call me Gav. "What's your first name anyways I mean…'Pavel' is a bit impersonal. manly kind of way but he was scary. "Ready?" I asked." he said with a wink but he didn't fool me. "You are not going to beli---" He started but was cut off by Pavel." "Really?" I grimaced. "We can't all be naturally charming like you Papav. He was beautiful in a rough. I could see the apprehension in his face." I said snickering. he was probably sitting beside the pilot and that man was… that man was huge!! He was the biggest man I had ever seen. "Wow…you're some piece of a man!" I exclaimed without even thinking." Adrian burst into laughter from the back. Nice to meet you" said Arch ignoring my comment. I decided to go sit beside him later. that you allow people to call you Gav or that you have friends. We're buddies now!" Pavel looked at me for a minute. "Miss Hathaway. "It's nice to meet you too" I said as formal as he was. He was at least 7 feet tall and 360 lbs. "Rose let me introduce you to Guardian Arch from the Secret Services. Eddie snorted and tried to hide it with a cough. Apparently he was not the kind of guy that you joked around with." This wit made him smile even wider. "I'm sorry dude that sucks. He was so broad. Eddie stood up too and I could see excitement in his eyes. "That's shocking!" I said with fake surprise." He said formally."What took you so long?" Asked Pavel as I quickly sat down across from him as the plane took off. Pavel had a ghost of a smile playing on his lips but tried to keep his seriousness. I turned around just in time to see the man exiting the cockpit. I was ready to bet that he loved my teasing as much as I liked his. "I have to be ready don't I? And my name is Gavrilovich. ." he said with a small smile. mouth agape. A real killing machine! I detailed him. My hand almost got lost in his enormous one. "Gavrilovich?" He pursed his lips. He had black hair and gray eyes with olive skin. "Well I don't know what is more shocking really. "We can't say you particularly took care of your appearance" he said pointing to my clothing. "What about you Papav? Ready?" I asked as I had to stay in front him till the pilot said it was ok to walk around. At this moment we heard the beeping sound releasing us and I almost jumped out of my seat.
"No time to discuss it. I needed the contact and hearing his quiet breathing. I turned around and grinned when Adrian winked at me." Said Arch as we approached the prison discreetly." He said with a small smile. "I know." I nodded. I'm pretty sure I can remember that. Adrian wrapped his right arm around my shoulders and rested his cheek on top of my head.Well I'll catch you later" I said going to sit beside Adrian. "It's time to free the big bad wolf." He whispered still keeping his eyes on mine. "I'll do it" he whispered but I decided to ignore it as I had no clue what he meant and I was feeling so good right there… I just closed my eyes and tried to forget everything that was about to happen." He added seeing I was about to argue. "I'll tell you in due time. I shrugged slightly." I said as a joke but his serious nod led me to think that he didn't get it." He nodded and reached for my hand wordlessly. "What did you say to my mother?" I asked curiously." he said with concern. . and without even thinking about it. wake up" he whispered against my forehead. "We're going to be alright. "Hi there. I couldn't help the small yawn. I squeezed his hand tightly after he intertwined our fingers. "Don't worry I'll sleep on my way to Norway." He said nodding toward the back of the plane where Adrian was sitting. I didn't even realized I fell asleep when felt Adrian's hand gently brushing my cheek." "Hello Rose" he said letting his head roll on his head rest so he was facing me. feeling his warmth made me feel safe. "Rose…Angel. "We still have a bit more than one hour flight Rose you could take a small nap." he repeated as a confirmation while tightening his arm around my shoulders as the plane started to descend. I inched closer and rested my head on his shoulder. smelling his wooden aftershave. "OK…. "That's all good." He added seriously."Just so we get our story straight my name is Sebastian Arch and the cover story will be that I'm Adrian Ivashkov's guardian. "We're about to land" he said gently kissing my forehead. "You seem tired. "Victor. I took a similar position and relaxed as we looked into each others' eyes. Chapter 16: "Ok here is the drill." I said as my eyes shot open now wide awake. "Ummm?" I muttered still keeping my head on his shoulder. "Victor." I said.
I nodded and walked briskly to Victor's cell. Adrian put the first guard to sleep and forced the second one to open the door to the corridor where Victor was held. I knew he loved me but he was still here. while you get him" he added looking to Eddie. . I stopped breathing with apprehension. I was sure people didn't snap at him that often. It still killed me to let him out. "So… have you made up your mind?" He asked with a big smile. We didn't need to raise their suspicion. Adrian and I as Pavel stayed in the plane waiting for us." I said through clenched teeth. "Lets go" said Adrian gripping my hand. I knew how much all of this cost him. "How could--" He started but stopped when he saw Adrian approaching with the guard. Arch nodded entering the small office looking at the screens. We were not faking the urgency. As far as they were concerned." I looked at him and smiled. "Don't insult me with stupid questions" he said not even bothering to look at me anymore. Adrian reached the guards at the entrance first as we stayed a couple of meters behind. I was about to ask him who elected him big boss but I kept it shut as we had much more important things to deal with. After talking with the guards for about 2 minutes Adrian gestured us forward. after you'd have done your voodoo crap to the guard" Arch said to Adrian. hidden. "You go first" said Adrian barely louder than a whisper. "You" he pointed to Adrian Eddie and I "you go in I'll stay by the door and keep contact with you if there is a move" he added taping the little ear piece he was wearing. Do you copy that?" I snapped. it was a real escape which was a good thing as it added to the pretends. Victor eyes narrowed with suspicion. "Hey! Being a 'super agent' is not a free pass for being an ass. "They'll do everything you ask them to do" he said to Arch pointing to the guards sitting in complete daze. to save Dimitri even if it meant we wouldn't be together. "I'll stay by the main gates. He looked at me with what seemed to be approval. "I'm here to get you out. "How will--" I started but didn't bother finishing when he handed me a small ear piece. every step of the way. I pursed my lips and Adrian squeezed my hand to show me his support. "I'll keep an eye on the cameras. I could see Adrian jaw muscles bulged but he didn't say anything.Nobody at the Prison was aware of what we were about to do. "It's now or never. "Rose you're back!" he said standing from the bed where he was lying. I knew it was more like a temporary freedom but it was crazy nevertheless.
"Who would have thought the rumors were real?" Said Victor shaking his head. "That's good. He seemed to like what he was seeing. but you know." "You gave me your word" I said cutting them off." He added pointing to Adrian "So what?" Asked Adrian. "Well at least it was true as far as YOU are concerned. Hate me as much as you want Rose but there is something you can't deny." Said Adrian as the guard yawned and fell on the floor. "When I was at the Court awaiting my trial I heard rumors. "He is a dhampir…You are one of them." "And I intend to keep my promise. . a Spirit user.. "Awesome!" said Eddie still not as used as I was to see compulsion." I pursed my lips but didn't comment because it was true." "It was 3 Moroi" repeated the guard. "And I'm probably the only one.. "What are you talking about?" I asked briskly. "You said you'd help me. "To Norway" "So you figured it out?" He asked somehow impressed. I almost snapped at him telling him I was not as stupid as he thought I was but it was Christian who figured it out. "Sleep now. I nodded grateful. I NEVER lied to you" he said locking his jade eyes with mine. Adrian ignored him. Every time I asked him something he told me what he believed was true. "Yes… open the door" said the guard with a sleepy voice. "Yeah well… it was not enough" I simply said." Said Adrian with an hypnotic voice. Now you are going to open this door" he said with a very calm voice. "Nothing…I just find that rather ummm amusing. good or bad. "You are very tired…you are going to sleep now and when you wake up you'll see it clearly in your head. The guard opened the door and as soon as Victor walked into the corridor he burst into laugher.Adrian locked eyes with the guard." He said literally marveling. "Maybe it was" he said evasively concentrating on Adrian who was working on the guard. "We need to move" said Eddie who was standing beside the door. 3 Moroi in their 40's. I kept my eyes on Victor whose eyes widen with understanding. Victor only told me the truth. Rumors that the nephew of the Queen got involved with my favorite rebel. I knew you were involved with the dhampir. "It was 3 men who attacked you. "And where are we going?" Asked Victor as we exited the corridor." He looked at Adrian who was looking at him with sharp eyes.
I walked into the plane without a look back. Yeah they should make it before sunset." "I'll see you soon" I replied. "Oh joy! Your number one fan is here too. "I love you Rose. I looked into his eyes for a minute and maybe he saw something he liked because he bent down to kiss me hard and I kissed him back. "You're going to go with them" said Adrian coldly to Arch. Victor was following us with a little smile on his lips. I had a foot on the first step when I felt someone pulling me back hugging me tight. just in case." Arch pursed his lips and nodded. "Why would he even agree to help you?" he asked suspiciously and I could see I had to find an answer fast or Victor would not move. "Please move. I hated myself for not reciprocating. "Meet you where?" Asked Victor curiously. "Same to you. "It's your job remember. "But I'm your Guardian I'm--" "Yeah you have to do as I say!" Snapped Adrian. Adrian worked on the guards in the entrance compelling them to believe the same description of the attackers than the guards inside the prison." "Abe Mazur again" Said Victor trailing off. whatever his ulterior motive was.Adrian winked at him and grabbed my hand. I could see he was thinking. "I go with Eddie and I'll met you there" he said to me. As soon as we reached it. "Ok lets meet Arch. the motors of the planes started to roam. and right at this instant. "I'll tell you everything in the plane" I said more or less sincere. but I was not idiotic enough to trust him blindly either. I knew they would just take the car and drive to the Dragomir Cabin which should take about 9 hours. We rushed to the runway where the plane was waiting. I was behind them." Said Victor with incredulity. . "Be careful" whispered Adrian in my hair." Victor walked beside Arch to the plane. "If that's not love" said Victor with a small laugh. Eddie was closing the cortege. be safe" I said reluctantly getting out of his embrace but I didn't want Pavel to burst a vein. "Hathaway!" Barked Pavel from the plane making me laugh. I did believe that Victor was really going to help me. "He has to… he is one of Abe Mazur guardian and an order is an order. "I'll tell you in the plane we really need to go now" I said dismissively keeping my eyes on Adrian. Pavel probably did see us coming." He said pulling me away.
"Please Rose. "So I can't help to wonder what on earth did you promise him or gave him for him to do that. "So Dear Rose. "You are one sick bastard!" I gasped quite happy that Arch was not here to hear those accusations as he resumed to take his seat beside the pilot. I got curious and I thought that maybe he wanted you as a guardian I mean…" he grinned "I can't judge I wanted you to guard me too. Then. come sit here" said Victor with an inviting tone but I knew I didn't have much choice. if I remember correctly. Pavel took his glasses off and shot me a warning 'be-careful' glance. "Well I know you are going to be an exceptional guardian but you are clearly not worth that much…no offence. when you came to visit. my eyes…my skin tone. "You just never thought I would succeed." Said Victor scrutinizing my face." I pursed my lips but kept my mouth shut." "How is that---" my eyes widened with understanding as Pavel jaw locked with anger. "So you are his heiress? That's…something. "Of course!! It's so evident!! But I would have never thought that Janine Hathaway could…" he stop shaking his head still laughing. my ability to bend the fine line between right and wrong as long as it meet my interest. Tell me now…Who does all that recall you of?" Victor looked at me quizzically for a minute or two before bursting into laugher. what do you have on Ibrahim Mazur?" I shot a glance at Pavel who just shrugged probably meaning it was my call. I never thought you would do that. "Look at me Victor…really look at me. "Well at first I thought he contacted me as a freebee." ." I said locking eyes with him "Look at my hair. "Well what is it then? Tell me Rose." "You knew I would try" I said with a bitter smile. I knew Victor well enough to know he was playing me. He is far from being honest but Abe Mazur going into a criminal venture for someone else? Not likely. You and I both I thought but kept this remark to myself. "So I can't help but think about something else and that…" he shuddered "that would be just shocking and disturbing coming from you but I guess you are maybe really ready to ANYTHING to save your dhampir. "But now…now it's different. "You know for you to trust him. Victor quickly glanced at him with a smile playing in his lips." "Possible" he said with a glint of humor in his eyes." "What do you think?" I asked coldly. "Which lead me to ask what I'm dying to know…What did you promise to Abe Mazur to get his help?" "What are you talking about?" I asked crossing my arms on my chest in a subconsciously defensive position. Pavel sat across from us probably to show Victor that he would be listening." "Non taken" I said quickly glancing at Pavel who was doing his best not to smile." I smile slightly "my attitude that you described as." Said Victor with a slight shrug.
" Pavel stood up to go to the cockpit probably to tell them where we were going. It actually took all my will power not to smack his smile away. I said not able to conceal the anger in my voice as well as I wanted to. "Give me a break" I snapped. "So why?" "Why what?" "Why did you tell me that if it was that evident?" I asked challenging him. "And I gave you all the answers Rose… Know that much. "So we're going to Norway? Where exactly??" "That's what you are supposed to tell me. Robert Duros brain was fried and Victor was the only one able to interpret it. She was making the bed in one of the main bedroom in the cabin. "As long as it's fine by you it's fine by me. "By the way the monastery is called St Vladimir" he added with humor. "Next well there is a street parallel to the park where you can find a monastery. He smiled "Because I knew that even if you did manage to find him it would be useless. except the hour I slept on Adrian's shoulder it had been more than 24 hours since I slept." I couldn't help but smile. "You better sleep for a little while Rose. it's not like I can go anywhere" said Victor matter of factly gesturing to our surrounding." I was about to say 'How in earth was I supposed to figure that one out?' But I was glad I kept my mouth shut."I'm proud of being his daughter" I said defensively. It would like he is talking a different language and I'm the only translator around. You knew your hint wouldn't be enough to lead me to your brother". "I gave you the 'Alexander Kielland' part and actually it's all you needed to know. Once we'll get there there is a park called Breiavatnet where there is a statue of Kielland in the center. Alexander Kielland was born in Stavanger. "Even if he is probably barely more intelligent than a plankton. "I'm sure anyone could have figured it out even the guy in there" He said pointing to the cockpit door where Arch was as Pavel already resumed his seat across the aisle. head high." He cocked his head to the side." My eyes narrowed with suspicion did he really mean that? Was it really THAT simple. Adrian was right then. no matter what. . "We're going to Stavanger" he said still smiling. "And what next?" He chuckled. I couldn't help but yawn. Norway. "I knew you needed me." Said Victor crossing his legs. "No it's true." I just nodded. I closed my eyes and decided to pay a little visit to Lissa in order change my mind a little." "I--" He raised his hand to shush me.
"I'm worried" she said looking down. She didn't want him to be near her because he felt bad for her. . "Oh…" Apparently Christian was not expecting that." I felt like a knife plucking deep into my chest. We can work it out. Are you ok?" He repeated again. closed the distance between their faces." "You bet!!" Christian ran his hand through his hair. I know Rose will be more than happy not to have you involved in all that. all of it." She didn't want to show her weaknesses to him. "No my problem is… facing him again" she said and I could see Victor clearly in her mind." He said nicely."Are you ok?" Asked Christian leaning against the doorframe. "Rose is going to freak!" Freak? Why would I freak?? Who was helping? I thought trying to search Lissa's mind but she was all over the place I couldn't get anything that made sense. She loved the contact. and if there was only the slimmest chance for that state to be reversed. because lets face it. "Lissa you can fool them but you can't fool me. I'm not scared about that. I was so selfish but the problem was that I just didn't feel bad enough to stop it all. "No that's not the problem" she said confidently. "I doing fine. He didn't kiss her but he was so closed. She was not questioning our friendship anymore. "Yeah we even have more help than we asked for. Lissa shrugged dismissively. She realized I was mainly an overprotective best friend. I think she is waiting for the first chance to send you back to the academy. I would do exactly the same thing but…but I'm just terrified. Christian went to sit beside her taking her hand in his. Lissa sighed and sat on the freshly made bed. All that only to try to save Dimitri. everything went according to plan. Christian closed the door and leaned on it. and without breaking eye contact." he said before crashing his lips on hers. because he pitied her. "I know you way better than that. "I want to be strong. I was making Lissa face the person she hated the most." Lissa couldn't help her little smile." "I know it's just…I'm not sure I can do it. if the situation were reversed if yo-. Rose is on her way to Norway." Said Christian chuckling. you will be safe because…because I love you and probably always will." "Look at you all bad ass. Lissa started to kiss him back with hunger and passion and I decided it was my time to exit her head before clothes started to fall. "I'll be here with you. Christian trapped Lissa's face in his hands." She said looking up to meet his eyes. "It's all good. I don't want Rose to feel bad for bringing him into our lives again. "I mean we are the best of the best here with all our powers overly enhanced. Eddie and Adrian are on their way…The house will be ready for the Strigoi. their noses almost touching that she could feel his warm breath caressing her face. she was craving for his touch but she thought that he didn't love her anymore…what a fool! "Adrian phoned.if someone I loved was Strigoi.
I just got dressed when Pavel knocked at my door. "I was about to wake you" said Pavel. Things were starting to get back to the way they were supposed to be. "We should land in about 30 minutes. It couldn't…wouldn't fail. "Where are Victor and GI Joe?" . Rose Angel wake up I heard Adrian call me and my eyes shot up with surprise. I groaned. insane hopes and great despair I would get my answer in three tiny days and then what?? The unknown was more terrifying that anything I faced to this day. "Promiscuity is never good. "I bet you can find something to eat in there. We settled for a hotel close to the Monastery to go to pick up Robert very early in order to make our way back to America still under the protection of the sun. if I make it. Based on Andre calculation." he barked. I realized that we crossed more steps now. Well. After months and months of speculations.I smiled settling more comfortably on my seat." "Thank you" I said and nodded a cordial 'hello' to Victor going to the back of the plane as my stomach was starting to rumble very loudly. since nobody replied. I felt like a kid who wanted to make friends with someone who didn't want to. I looked around but only saw Victor reading a magazine and Pavel who was keeping a sharp eye on him. in three days I would be face to face with Dimitri. Chapter 17: After we landed we decided to check into a hotel for the night since the pilot needed as much rest as the rest of us. I was probably dreaming about him but that was just…strange. and it will all end then. I was replaying the plan in my head over and over again. It seemed I was barely asleep when the alarm clock beeped. "You know I thought we were on a Rose-Gav level now but no…" I closed the door "You insist on keeping it on a surname level? Fine Pavel!" "It's easier that way.' "Whatever…" I said stupidly hurt. "Hathaway time to go. "Where are we?" I asked the voice still full of sleep. it wasn't the case. The golden couple was finally back together having their happy ending. I felt better after phoning Lissa at the cabin and she announced that Eddie and Adrian made it back safely. Adrian? Is that you? I thought feeling idiotic but with everything that was going on maybe telepathy was possible but no. trying to open my eyes. sleeping is an overstatement as I spend most of the night staring at the ceiling. Victor shared a room with Arch and Pavel and I got to sleep in a room by myself." He said evasively. As I started to nibble on the crackers I found. Maybe I would get mine too I thought before falling asleep. I'll sleep for at least a week! I thought stumbling to the bathroom hoping that a cold water would put my brain in the right way. I looked around. When it's done." He pointed to the back of the plane. I started to imagine how things would happen from now on. It was like my eyes lids weighted 200 pounds.
that the monks graciously lent us. had to stay in the main entrance while Pavel. I was actually glad Victor was with us because the monks were refusing to let us in but once they saw Victor and he introduced himself they let us in. I. . Arch went to sit beside the pilot. he is mentally unstable. Arch. Actually he looked like the sanest of all of us. grateful.Pavel had a ghost of a smile. Once in the plane. to go back to the plane. "Why?" Asked Robert looking at Victor. We stocked the plane with 5 bags of blood for him and Robert." I nodded. The shower did half the job but I was sure that one or two big cups of strong. black coffee would finish it. He had the same jade eyes as Victor but the resemblance stopped there. Well. It felt awkward and I had to go against all my instinct to not push him away. The walk to the monastery took about 5 minutes and it was a good thing because even if it was cloudy Victor was not comfortable outside. kind…almost safe. All the way back to the airport Robert kept his eyes locked on me. When I met Robert I had a shock." I said with a small smile. "Yeah it's her…It's Rose" said Victor with the nicest voice I ever heard of him. "I'll do my best. "Victor is having his…'breakfast' in the room" he said grimacing slightly. "I just couldn't handle that without at least a coffee in me. When he saw me he looked at me curiously and flashed me a million dollar smile and I couldn't help but smile back. was barely 40 and he seemed so nice. He had blond shaggy hair. "You are the wild flower aren't you?" He asked me as he hugged me. Wild Flower…Rose! I finally understood. like he was trying to read my soul and it was making me very uncomfortable." He said so seriously that I felt I had to reassure him. "I told them we'll be waiting in the lobby. "Coffee?" I asked tentatively. He nodded sadly before getting in the dark SUV with a chauffeur. You need him. maybe a face that said 'beware I'm totally crazy' but it was the total contrary. I knew he liked my witty self but he was not ready to admit it. be nice I repeated to myself awkwardly hugging him back. Victor sat Robert beside him and I sat across from them. To be honest. Ok he was coo coo in the was he was talking in metaphor…that's going to be bitchy! "A flower that grows in adversity is the most beautiful of all…but you have to be careful that the shadows don't swallow you. I didn't really know what I expected. as a woman. and Victor went to pick up Robert. I started to suspect that he was not that hot for our company. it was not like I cared if Victor Dashkov was feeling good but it would be a pain if he passed out because of the sun. "You bet" he said gesturing me to the elevator." I nodded understanding how he was feeling.
" I nodded." "What--" I tried confused. "Maybe. "You know what he is talking about don't you?" Asked Victor with his evil grin. He looked at me through narrow eyes. that I should be nice with him.. "You…really??" He asked apparently happily surprised. "I need to go in the shadows? Why?" "It's where his light is. "She wants to bring the light back in a dark one. being Victor's brother was not making him an evil psycho. "He wants to know if it's someone you loved?" Asked Victor." He specified for me." I muttered. "You need to find your way through the darkness. ." "Of course I do. "The more healing hands the better. "I need your help. I looked at him confused. with the way he looked at him." I shrugged dismissively. "Yes. "Spirit users. I quickly glanced at Victor. Robert looked at Victor and." Said Robert nodding approvingly. You need to put the light back in the dark one. "Is----loved?" Robert asked me. too long in there and there will be no present and no future…your soul…will be lost.Why what? I thought but kept it shut. I could see that he was communicating with him. "A black hole?" Victor asked rhetorically but he probably understood I knew what he was talking about when all the blood drained from my face. it's someone I love." "You have healing hands?" He asked curiously. "3??" Said Victor literally marveling." I said smiling to Robert. It was the place that Andre showed me in the plane. "I have some…3 to be exact." Victor frowned as he seemed to read something in Roberts' head that confused him. I nodded." I threw a quick glance to Pavel as I was uncomfortable to talk with him so close." Said Victor looking at me. sometimes he doesn't realize that he is not wording his whole question but I get it fully. I decided to ignore him. as he is mentally connected to me. I looked at him quizzically. I fidgeted on my seat he seemed to be reading me and I seriously didn't like that. "A pure soul has more chance to fight the shadows but even the toughest flower needs light to survive. I knew only too well the black hole. I kept repeating myself that he was a nice guy. There was a blank in his sentence and I knew it. "Well yeah." I said with the full force of my puppy eyes on him. "Someone I love with all my heart and soul.
I didn't think I fooled him. "I don't really think it's a good idea Hathaway. "That's an understatement Rose! Robert witnessed two reversions and each time the soul of the shadow kissed that visited the limbo didn't make it back. "Fine" he said through clenched teeth. An eternity of wandering…that was an heavy price to pay." He took a deep breath." "OK let me summarize. "The land of dead…" Victor nodded. "I'm going to go in the soundproof cockpit to see where we are." Said Victor coolly. "The hole your brother talked about is the land of dead. "Uh…" said Victor and I'll be damned I saw a flash of worries in his eyes. You know--" he started and then stopped looking from Victor to me." I said like it wasn't a big deal. "What if I have a guide?" I asked remembering how Andre pointed the entrance of the hole to me. He sighed. "I need some privacy with them please. in fact I like that honesty." I said as calmly as I could even if my heart was beating so hard in my chest it hurt. could you give us a moment?" I asked looking at Pavel. 'I will so kick your butt if you make me leave now' "I think it is. "What?" He asked completely stunned taking off his glasses to lock eyes with me. I shrugged "I know it's dangerous. "That's the general idea. "Your light will be in the darkness. "On the other side your vessel--" I quickly glanced at Victor who mouthed 'your body' "Will shut off lightly while you are in this deep soulless sleep till the day…till the day it will just shut down for good. I mean…it's not like they can go anywhere" I added keeping my eyes on him to show I wouldn't back away. "I understand why you wanted him out" he said pointing to the seat where Pavel was before. The more it will stay there." Victor nodded "and if I can't make it back before some time my body will just die and I'll wander in the 'land of death' forever…Am I right?" I ask trying to sound like my usual brave smartass self but it was hard to pretend since I was scared and worried beyond words." I repeated as coolly as I could. It seemed like he didn't care what would happen to me and." "So…what didn't you want mister 'big shot' to hear?" asked Victor with humor. I could see it was one of his silent conversation and of course I didn't receive anything." he said trying to sound detached but I could see that what he meant was. the more it will turn dark till the day it won't even remember it wanted to get back. I send my soul in so my body is in a sort of coma. "And you can get in?" "The brave soul she has will have to" said Robert answering the question. if I don't find the exit?" I asked trying to hide my fear and apprehension." "What if I don't make it back. "Please. Robert gave me a sad smile."You know about the hole…you need to go inside to---" Started Victor but I raised my hand to stop him. "But once she is in…she has to get out. in a strange and twisted way. .
He would help me make it back even if he couldn't. he was just…'out' but it was my life that was at stake here and I felt legitimate to be uncomfortable to risk my soul on a totally fried individual. Even if you two find the exit again he will most likely not be able to cross it once more. What if I have another spirit to guide me. knowing that Dimitri's redemption was within my reach yet I didn't seize it? Did I even have to ask? I knew the answer in my heart. I knew that Andre would go in with me. with pale brown hair cut short like a pixie. or something. "My lips are sealed Rose."A guide?" Asked Victor and Robert simultaneously. How he made it out in the first place is like a glitch in the 'door'. he knew that I was an important part of Lissa's well-being and happiness. It was everything else! Her face . "He said it would be impossible to convince a dead spirit to join you on your quest. there was a black sedan car parked a bit further down with a woman standing by the hood. did she made it obvious. as a dead soul. I want to see what happens way more than that." said Victor with his evil smile." Here we go. She wasn't old. "I will have the guide. They were both surprised and I guessed it took a lot to surprise crazy Rob. "Is it possible to send the other soul back even if I'm stuck?" "It happened yes. Could I really do that? Risk wandering for eternity in the limbo. If she ever infiltrated something she had to have done it as a guardian.sure…stuck. so nothing special about her on that level." I stayed silent for a little moment." I mumbled as Pavel came back.agree…. I was going to go and look for Dimitri's soul. because anything else would have just been impossible for her to impersonate. Victor sighed before concentrating on me. the half conversation yet again! I thought slightly annoyed. He wanted Lissa to be happy and safe. "You are far too brave for your own good.dead….." I said with certainty. "Should I worry about that? Are you going to tell??" I asked trying to keep my cool. "Another question though…" I said quickly glancing at the cockpit door behind me to be sure Pavel was not back. chewing on my bottom lip. "Another spirit…a spirit that managed to get out of the limbs in the first place." "You don't want them to know how risky it is for you right? You're scared they'll stop you. That was a terrible choice to make. maybe mid thirties." Robert shook his head. There was no way I would've forgiven myself." "I bet you do. not really dead but certainly not alive. I knew she was the other Secret service agent and boy. we will most likely be locked in the limbo. I couldn't just turn away at the last moment and I had to ask myself: Could I ever live with myself." Said Robert somehow reluctantly. I was sure that woman could never go unnoticed in a crowd. "…impossible…. a cop. Chapter 18: Once we landed I had made my decision. I never thought I had to risk my soul to save Dimitri's. After everything my friends sacrificed and risked." "Why?" "Because. and as terrible and presumptuous as it sounded. I felt bad to feel annoyance as it was not Robert's fault. She was about my height. I sighed then and the rest of the flight was in silence. When we stepped out of the plane.
getting in the car beside him. wrapping an arm around my shoulders. Arch and the woman. no. "And look at the bright side." I muttered. stopping the possibility the discussion continuing. It's dangerous. "You don't think we're going to succeed do you?" Victor look down at me silently for a minute. I felt like she no longer expected anything good out of the human race. because I know you well enough to know that. When we arrived at the cabin. "THAT was a low blow. shaking my head in defeat. It was as if she'd seen far too much. still not looking at him. I really hope we do. "You…" I shook my head "you weren't supposed to be here. no! You can't be here! You have to go!" I said taking a step back bumping on Pavel's chest. "For your sake." "I---" I gave him my best death glare. and I was relieved when Arch gestured us down. "Ahhh." He smiled and rested his hands on my shoulders. you will never be like her. "You probably won't reach her age anyways." I sighed. right?" "But baba I---" I started. As soon as I walked in the kitchen I froze on the spot. "No." I snorted. I stayed silent. if you fail. Arch went down first to talk with her and I stood under the plane threshold looking down at them. from the shadowy spot beside the door." It's not that dangerous remember? You keep saying that you are all overly prepared. "The more the better. "I bet you did. "It's a state of mind Rose. From her glance at me. with the way you are living your life…" he shook his head. "Calm down Rose. walking me toward the main room. "Think again Kazim. I missed this place. "But did you really think I would let you risk your life without being here?" He asked rhetorically. that it's safe.was hard and her grey eyes were expressionless. "We're all good and it's pointless for you to say anything. and that fact alone made her seem invincible." I simply said. ." said Victor as we reached the car. the Dragomir cabin. "No!" I gasped. apparently named Smith." He said. you have to go. took Victor and Robert in the main room." I took a deep breath and took the bait like he knew I would. Pavel and I took the back entrance as I wanted some alone time with Lissa before she would have to face Victor. probably to arrange every aspect of the security. "Like father like daughter. He said that he would gesture to us to come down when we were ready to go. you'll keep fighting the impossible till you fall in the heart of a battle. I won't budge anyway. Victor may be an earth user but he had the very annoying ability to read me way too thoroughly." said Victor looking down at them." he said with a wide smile. "Like you care!" I said. "Plus I brought my other two guardians" he said." Said my father approaching me.
who held her hand tightly. "But that's going to kill him!" Gasped Lissa before I even got a chance to say it myself. she would probably heal and move on with time if I didn't get out of this one alive. "I'm surrounded by all the people that love me and six killer guardians. because anyways as she was already in the living room. "I know we're going to make him wear some healing rings and stuff but it's barely enough to glitch his conscience. I of course left out the whole 'I-might-not-make-it-back' part and Victor kept it his mouth shut. Just enough for his body to stay intact while 'little miss hero'"he said pointing at me "retrieves his 'real' life and puts it back in his body. In fact. to go and retrieve Dimitri's soul from the 'Land of the dead'. 'It's actually a lot easier than I thought it would be' she said directly in my mind. But it didn't matter." Said Adrian from beside me." I could feel panic coming from Lissa. you're here now. but surprisingly. When I walked in. so that when Rose comes back with the soul. The dark will be weak enough for the light to claim back its place." Lissa nodded and I could feel her relax slightly. "It's all going to be alright. that her power would fail her somehow. "But that's exactly what we need. he's really not scary anymore. I looked at her quizzically and she smiled. My Lissa was becoming tougher and it was a relief to figure that one out. as a shadow kissed dhampir. the Strigoi in him won't be able to fight or reject the soul." Said Victor looking at Adrian approvingly. because I was one step away from telling him to take a picture because it would last longer. Once the artificial life escape him you--" he said pointing at Oksana." I nodded smiling. "Three spirit users are more than enough." "But…how can we weaken a strigoi enough to do that?" Asked Oksana with concern." I said looking only at her. Besides. I looked at him with horror. "The healing hands have to keep the dark one in the shadow. between the worlds. I related what Robert already told me in the plane concerning my need. He patted my knee from under the table.I followed him there. Even if one power breaks. she was scared that she wouldn't be good enough. After that we all went in the dining room and sat around the big oak table as the six guardians stood against the wall. Lissa and Adrian. Lissa was sitting between Adrian and Christian. that wasn't overshadowed by fear. much less considerably weaken the Strigoi side of him" "We'll have to stake him. Christian shot me such a 'dude-what-the-fuck?!' look and I had to use all my will power to keep from laughing. It was lucky I remembered how much I needed him and that his mental health was not the best. there was almost no fear there. He just looked at me with a mocking smile." Said Robert keeping his eyes on me only. "will have to maintain just a thread of life. completely forgetting that I wanted to see Lissa. . "What my brother means is that you have to weaken the strigoi in Belikov. "You see that's why the spirit users are so important. I felt her joy of having me back radiating through the bond. two should be enough. With all these people.
" he said." she said in defeat. "Don't need to get worked up." I said trying to sound serious although I couldn't help but smile. "It's alright. "So. "Two guardians for me alone?? I'm so blessed. As soon as they were out I concentrated on Christian again. "So what?!" Snapped Sydney. and I don't really care about your tactics little boy. "Why are you in such an hurry little fire user? But yes. you want to get rid of the traitor while you are going over your strategy one more time. "That's enough!" my father snapped. "You should make one." I pursed my lips but didn't reply because it was true. Sydney looked at me." "We need to speak offensive now and since you guys will be in the safe room with the spirit users and three guardians. keeping his hold on Lissa's hand. 007 what's the big secret?" Christian chuckled and stuck his tongue out. Everyone looked up at him apprehensively." said Victor raising his hands in surrender." "Are we done here? At least as far as you are concerned?" Asked Christian pointing from Robert to Victor." When Victor stood up both Arch and Smith took a step forward."I still can't believe you managed to get a little alchemist into your rank Rose…I'm impressed. I think my father IS the only person who could actually manage to wipe the smug/cocky smile from Christian's face. it would help Rose travel faster." said Victor. 'we need to kill Dimitri to give him his life back' chat. I know a lot. "Nah nothing changed we just had an…addition" Said Adrian from beside me. At lease in theory. Only the end result matters to me. I just wanted to annoy him. "It was no secret. "Yeah I can do that if it can help." he shrugged. now we need to wait for the practice. we're done as far as the healing is concerned." Victor chuckled "Oooo I see." He said raising his hand stopping Sydney in midsentence. I just never tell how I know." I added locking eyes with my father. am I right?" "Can you blame me?" Asked Christian coolly." "How do--" "How I know things is irrelevant. "Thank you." "Very mature. "You don't really need to hear the fighting strategy. "I know you have a potion that helps the spirit to leave its body." "Yeah without a ward…" Abe shook his head "no guardian could have bought it and Strigoi or not Belikov used to be one. he didn't seem offended by Christian. "So what did you decide while I was away?" I asked looking at Lissa "apparently the plan has… evolved." . "Ask Rose."We decided to put a weak ward around the cabin. Robert is hungry and tired anyways. who'd stayed silent till now. Victor just smiled. shaking his head to gesture Robert to follow him. diverting the conversation for the whole." Victor pointed at me.
No one would ever expect a Moroi to be waiting first line. He nodded. . I would have to somehow put healing jewelry on him just for him to have enough of a conscience to let me lead him in the safe room and then…and then it will be the end. Andre showed up as soon as I called him. The evening was pretty tense for obvious reasons. Once we were all set I went outside to have a little word with Andre. I guessed the answer was Rose Hathaway. For position I had to fake the surveillance of the back balcony while wearing the 'Attractstrigoi' potion." He said as a joke Lissa smiled to that but I could feel the uneasiness to that statement. I remembered Sydney asking me who would be idiotic enough to want to wear that. Yeah. "You're one of the best option for me to find my way back to this world. Once I face Dimitri.I nodded. She knew he was almost unbeatable as the Strigoi wouldn't except that much power. good or bad. "Oh and believe me or not but you can totally call me 'captain awesome'" Said Christian with a wide grin.First line Ozera." "Yep…. Christian was now the deadliest weapon against Strigoi around. but really. but she couldn't help it. We had the element of surprise. The rest of the plan remained mostly unchanged. the secret I was hiding… Everything! We all decided to go to bed early but I kept staring at the ceiling rethinking the plan. I wanted to tease him. I was positive he would help me to get to the other side. but with Christian high in a tree they probably wouldn't have to fight any Strigoi as Christian would strike the Strigoi as soon as they passed the ward. "I took only half a potion and I managed to completely burn three dummies at more than 150 yards!" He said literally beaming. I couldn't believe that none of us thought about the ward before. Pavel and Eddie would do some fake rounds. He informed me that Dimitri was on his way and he only had three other Strigoi with him." I know he mouthed then he just shrugged and disappeared. now grateful that my father was there. Will you guide me through the limbo? " I asked him uncomfortably knowing it was like a death sentence. the risky mission we'd face in less than a day. the presence of the most famous Moroi traitor. Every Moroi except Christian would be in the safe room with the two secret agents and one of Abe's guardians. although they would still be alert. it was so impressive. apparently the Strigoi version of the love of my life had a temper and rather enjoyed decapitating any other being that questioned him with his bare hands…How nice! Andre also agreed to come with me to the other side. except for Dimitri. the Strigoi would be attuned to my sent only…how charming!. imagining how my face to face with Dimitri would turn out. "Are you really sure? You…you know that you won't come back afterward. "And why is that?" I asked teasing. she just loved him so much . "Well the four Strigoi are going to be a piece of cake for you. to tell him it wasn't that impressive.
Adrian was not a fool and I wouldn't insult him by lying." I said not able to hide the urgency in my voice. "Do you remember when we left the Academy." "It's not really my safety I'm worried about." I said stubbornly. wrapping myself tightly into the blanket." I nodded and looked back at the trees' shadows. She asked me if it was really safe enough for you. I realized… I realized that I couldn't bear the thought of him being hurt. "Even if I know you are hiding something from us. "Anything. "Well I expect things to go smoothly but we never know right? If something. "And I need you to stay alive. "Can't sleep?" Asked a husky voice from the threshold. your mother told me not to forget something?" "Yeah…" I said warily. I was glad that I was the only one worried enough to stay awake. which made him both beautiful and vulnerable. Rose. How could I. "Are you ok. even…" he looked at me through narrowed eyes. but I guess that's the only thing I can't promise. because she knew I wouldn't lie. I was sure that a little moment in the fresh air of an early morning in the Dakota mountains would help me sleep. I walked quietly to the back balcony and sat on the wooden bench watching the sun finish raising through the high trees." I said crossing my hands on my lap." I suddenly said with urgency. He was still sleeping. anything at all goes wrong. I want you to run. getting more and more intrigued. "You asked me what she was talking about and I told you that I would tell you in due time. protected from the sun by the balcony shade ." he smiled at me but he stayed against the banister. "Everything will be just fine. I gave up trying to sleep." "Awww." I said truthfully with a small smile. Adrian chuckled." .After about 2 hours. Rose. Rose?" "As okay as I can be. "Run to the plane without looking back. "I could ask you the same question." "I---Please?" I tried. I swear you guys are safe. The planes are heavily warded and you'll be safe there. "I want you to promise me something Adrian." "I need you to be safe." He said almost immediately. your mom came to see me just before we left. knowing that I would face Dimitri tonight? I looked at Sydney who was snoring soundly. "You know how much I like pleasing you." He said with concern. Your aura's told me that much. "I'm hiding something but it's not that important. I sighed. "You see. "I think the time has come. I turned my head and smiled to a sleepy Adrian." He shrugged slightly and came to stand across from me resting against the banister." "I'm all ears." I nodded.
" he whispered against my lips. and since you came back the pink has increased. I knew Adrian loved me. I knew that the feelings you may have for me are irrelevant even if it is love. "I saw you with him. and I didn't want him to see that I was on the verge of tears. "You know. "Your aura…has plenty of pinkish spots when you are with me." He took a deep breath and I could tell what he was going to say next hurt him deeply. whatever will happen from now on. He was touching on the thing I was feeling the worst about. I pray every night hoping that things will work out and that you get Dimitri's soul back. he'd proved it to me over and over again. "I said that I didn't know if it would change anything but that I would fight till my last breath to keep you safe." I had to laugh. His words had made me happy yet sad at the same time. Adrian stayed quiet for a minute and gave me a sad smile. It was far from being Rose worthy. "Well. If he loved him that much…why would he help me get someone else? "Why?" I was brave enough to ask. But of course it was not enough…far from being enough. I would have thought you could love me but…" he shook his head." "I love you. Adrian captured my hand and leaned down to give me a chaste kiss. "I know you do." "But I know it's not enough." He looked at me with so much tenderness that my heart tightened in my chest. but I never thought it was to the point of risking his own life for me. and I could hear that it was to hide his embarrassment. "I just want you to know that whether it works or not. "And just so you know. "I think I loved you since the moment I saw you." I stood up and walked to meet him. I just never thought he loved me to THAT point." He continued before I could comment that I was still loved Dimitri with all my heart and soul. cocky much!?" He shook his head. I was confused. mouth agape. "Not enough?" I tried. "Rose…" he whispered closing his eyes. I love you enough that if you are happy. but—" he chuckled. "It was full force red…I actually never saw an aura like that not even with Lissa and Christian." I could see the utter sincerity in his eyes." I said in his ear fiercely. especially when I was ready to die for another man. "I told her that you were safe enough. you'll always have a very special place in my heart and that I do love you. I raised my hand to his cheek and he leaned into my touch. I realized you need someone to fight for you and I know that I love you more than you love yourself." I blurted out and right at that instant I knew it was true. "You always choose everyone else over yourself but I just can't choose anyone over you…not even myself and I wish I could say I'm sorry but I can't because I'd choose you over anyone and everything else over and over again. "In any other circumstances I would have taken that love. then I am too. I thought he would value his survival over mine and I didn't blame him for that. He let go and turned to walk back in. This love is… after seeing that. . I saw your aura.I bit my bottom lip so hard I could taste blood in my mouth. He turned back to face me just before reaching the threshold. "Because I love you enough to want your happiness over my own." I looked up at him.
It was a good thing the others were already in the secured room or there just might have been some sort of mix up and death wishes and threats would've flown. They all went in the room more or less happily to finish setting everything up for the reversion and Dimitri's captivity." he said. hugging me tight. ok? No kamikaze trick. "Always." he whispered before walking quietly back in the house. "Goodnight…" I whispered back. Would he want to change here." I said. playfully punching his shoulder. just to be sure THAT we were ready for Dimitri when he came to attack…or to take me away. "You be careful Rose. I know you are brave enough." Said Pavel. "Well it's a nice change…Usually you are the stinky one. It had a sickening sweet scent.And I know that he is what you need…what you want. but if it could drive Dimitri directly to me. But Adrian…Adrian was a different story. "Wow girl you stink!" Christian said. I'd decided to take the one Dimitri sent to me at the Academy. trying to sound relaxed but I could see from the way he stood that he was stressed. or would he take me away again and lock me up in order to taunt me more? I sighed and stroked my stake idly. Adrian had been the hardest to convince. "Oh really? I didn't know you were smelling me." I said. Lissa needs you… I need you. "Same to you fire boy. "That's not very reassuring." I intertwined our fingers and looked into his intense emerald eyes." He wiggled his eyebrows. sitting stubbornly on the kitchen chair. Believe me." I said with a smile before letting go of him."You know what we talked about yesterday don't you?" "Of course! How could I forget when you said that--" ." I said before pulling Christian into a bear hug." He grimaced. sniffing my neck. I chuckled. "I know that. I nodded. "I'm not going anywhere! I said to your mother I would help to keep you safe. pulling him into a hug. right on the balcony." "Yeah well---" "Rose it's time. "That's nice info Miss Hathaway. Adrian. "I'll be right over." He said." He shrugged "It's as simple as that. "Good night. It's just. Chapter 19: We all set up the alarm for an hour before sunset. Rose. it was worth it." I didn't know what to say and just did my best to fight the tears. I put some 'attract strigoi' potion on my neck. I sighed and took his hand to help him up.
gripping the banister. "Ok." he said. I lose in some ways." I replied. Here we go. I could see he didn't like where I was going because he knew I was right. I watched his retreating form. I could hear the caution in his voice. The human look back in his eyes. "I love you. trying to sound lighthearted but I could see the honest concern in his eyes. "And you also know that I would risk myself to keep you safe. If Dimitri picked up on my heart rate it would be a disaster." I said." "Do you need help thinking?" He asked. "Whatever happens." I replied." I hear a voice breathe in my ear." I whispered to myself. "Me too." Adrian frowned suspiciously. Calm down Rose…Just breathe. squeezing his hand once more. "I was just…thinking." I said." he whispered as he went into the room." I said darkly." he said grudgingly. forcing a smile. I really hoped I'd made the right decision in following the divagations of a mad man. out of harm's way. the tenderness. cutting him off. "Roza." Adrian groaned and grimaced. "Uh? Yeah. I took deep breaths and forced myself to think of those moments right after we would bring Dimitri back. My heart was going a thousand miles an hour and I fought to breath normally so I could regulate it. "And do you think I would let you get hurt even a little?" "I guess not." I took a deep breath and squeezed his hand. bringing me back to reality. my heart slowed down. "Anytime. Adrian walked into the room and one of my father's guardians guarded it "You ok?" Asked Pavel. I let my eyes roam on the dark forest around me. . and do you think I could be totally focused on the goal if I knew you were roaming somewhere in the house unprotected? Of course not. the love…Soon after.I thought. I hid my stake under my hoodie. thinking that he would've been an awesome friend if he'd just remove the stick in his ass."Good. I kept repeating to myself." he said with a sharp nod before leaving the room. "Alright. After a little moment I saw a blinding light coming from a tree on my left. shaking my head. "The best way to keep me safe is to do what is planned and to keep yourself safe so I don't worry unnecessarily and keep my mind sharp and focused. He would know I was waiting for him and be even more weary. "You win. "It's not a game. But thanks. "It's ok…it's all thought out. tightened my hair into a high ponytail and went to wait on the rear deck. Christian is fighting." I pulled him toward the safe room where the others were already setting things up. Maybe we were alone in the kitchen but the house was full of Moroi and dhampirs so…super hearing all around.
showing me two fingers. "You wouldn't want your friends to worry and come out right?" He shook his head. The healing was working. I couldn't believe he's managed to get to me so quickly and silently. His smile was warmer now. again playing with the ring I was wearing on my other thumb." He said. I didn't even have to fake my surprise. "W-why do you want me to join you?" I asked to humor him. taking my other ring and sliding it onto the forefinger of his other hand." He brought his hand to my cheek and gently brushed my cheekbone with the pad of his thumb. and he'd said that he wanted me. "Shush Roza. my stake lying at the ground at his feet. don't you?" "I know. Roza! We're finally reunited!" He walked closer to me. I looked down." His smile grew wider. placing his icy cold fingers to my chin." You know I wouldn't mind killing them. "What you asked me on the bridge." He said. I shuddered at his touch as he slowly lifted my face to look up into his eyes. always will. "You know. "So kill me. Dimitri stood before me. Seeing the ring of red around his irises made me sick." "Ask you what?" I asked. "Ask me again. but I tried to keep my emotions in check and my expression blank. "Come on. I had asked him why he'd wanted me to join him." "Yeah… " I said. I had to move now. I took off the healing ring I was wearing on my thumb and pretended to play with it. coldly sliding the ring on him index. "Would you just stop doing that?!" He growled." he said. looking down at my hand. but he didn't seem to realize that it was coming from the rings. "Dimitri how--It's---" I looked around. Dimitri placed my stake on his belt." . "Always have. I thought I could see the light flickering in his eyes. doing my best to hide my smile. I heard Pavel shout something but he was too far for me to make out his words. so close I could feel his breath on my face. his cold gaze and heartless smile sending shivers down my spine." he said. along with a hint of confusion. "That's what you always wanted." He said. cheer up." He chuckled.I whirled around. on my way here I was still unsure of what I should do with you." I whispered. "Because I love you. "You don't deserve much more! You staked me…Twice!" He said. trying to keep my voice from shaking. Roza. still dazed that he made it to me so fast. "What I--" I froze as I remembered now. The others were waiting in the room and I just hoped they wouldn't get impatient and start moving around. "I…" I kept looking down. I had to move along now. honestly confused. "How I made my way back to you is not important. "I changed my mind so many times. "I can't kill you Roza. I knew Dimitri would hate the distraction." I said. and nothing more. Should I just kill you? I mean--" he kissed my lips forcefully. "Good. "I'm talking Roza. remember? For us to be together. Just that he wanted me. don't you dare ignore me! Don't get me mad!" He took the ring from me violently. "You know you don't like me when I'm mad. a gasp escaping my lips.
" said Victor. "I…I can't risk my friends. I trust you(.yeah a part of me hated you.) but I'm not an idiot. I came here to claim what's mine. taking his hand and intertwining our fingers. pointing to the door. but it was exactly what I was hoping for. Pain. Dimitri gasped and let go of my hand. "It's just like heaven. I will love you forever Dimitri. it tastes just…" he sighed with content. Arch took over for me and helped Pavel set Dimitri down in the cot. "I have no quarrel with them. Strigoi or not. who was leaning against the far wall. squeezing my hand." I said. Think Rose think! I thought. keeping my eyes on his because it was the truth and I knew it was the only thing that could convince him." I said." "But…" I started. "You love me…That's all I need and…" I sighed." I said. I mean . I kept my grip on his hand as I pulled him silently in the house with me. he bit my bottom lip. "I'm tired of fighting you because. allowing me to turn around. going to Dimitri's left side to help Pavel drag him into the room." "Okay?!" He asked." he shrugged. . still suspicious. fear and the most painful…love. piercing the skin with one fang before sucking slowly the small amount of blood. "I'll be out in a minute. "Okay then. "Leave the stake. "Why?…" He whispered crashing as he fell to the floor but Pavel caught him before he completely crumbled. "As much as I tried hating you. I told you already. "I missed your blood Roza. anger." "Ok…" I said. I had to remind myself I was doing what was best for him. As long as they don't try to stop me. for us. and I'm still a dhampir for now so I don't want to take the risk and end up hurting them. "I won't hurt them. trying to look worried. He was still for a few seconds before he pulled me up and crushed his lips onto mine with so much passion I nearly forgot all of this was an act. Once he could feel I was breathless. I'm coming with you. who was as fast as lightening. Dimitri's eyes narrowed in suspicion. and that's you. I promise you. plunged his stake hard into Dimitri's chest. betrayal. but a bigger part of me loved you and I know that I won't be able to get rid of that part. The three Spirit users almost immediately knelt down beside him and started to send a small stream of healing magic into him while the two guardians tied Dimitri's almost dead body to the cot just in case. As soon as we walked in. "Nobody will get hurt. surprised. his hand resting on Roberts' shoulder. As soon as I crossed the door from the kitchen to the living room." "Let me just say goodbye to Lissa." I brought his hand to my lips and kissed it. I just couldn't." "Why would you join me after… after refusing for so long?" He asked. "Open the door!" I shouted." he said. I did my best to kiss him back just as fiercely. I could see so many emotions in his eyes beside the life escaping him. trying to sound wary. " "I'm not letting you out of my sight Rose. I dodged as Pavel.I nodded. "I'll join you but… but not here.
"It'll be alright." I said to Sydney. I sat on the chair and drank the potion in one gulp. God help me! I thought as everything went black. extending his hand toward me." Said Andre. "Yeah…" I said. "It's my call. "I'm a spirit!" "No shit. Chapter 20: "That's…" I looked around and it was like a parallel world except that everything was in shades of grey. I looked like crap. Andre pointed to a point behind me and when I turned I saw myself! Or. to feel his soft skin." I whispered to myself." he said hugging me before rushing beside Lissa. I closed my eyes as the taste faded and opened my eyes to find that nothing had changed. At this instant. Well. looking around. Andre appeared. trying to reassure her…well everyone actually. "Glad to have you back." he said. I growled with exasperation. she didn't move. "Holly shit!" I looked at my hands." I said. not able to conceal the sarcasm. She didn't even turn around to look at me. "Creepy?" Tried Andre taking my hand. I shook my head. I guess since we were both spirits. It was so odd to actually grip his hand. I almost forgot how his voice sounded like." Andre said loud and clear. surprised."Christian?" I asked worriedly. materializing with the black hole. myself included. Holy shit. let's go" he said. "Syd! I'm talking to you!" Still. I'll help you make it back. I turned around and sighed with relief. "Here. but kept looking at the healing team working on Dimitri. squeezing my hand reassuringly as the black hole sucked us in. . my body that my worried father was cradling. Sherlock. "She can't hear you. wincing as the fluid burned down my throat. the laws of the whole spirit thing were all getting screwed didn't really apply to us anymore. I jumped from the chair. "I'm here for you. "Your potion didn't work!" I shouted to Sydney. trying to sound far more confident than I actually felt." "Same goes to you. It was like I would imagine the world after a nuclear attack. at least. He looked tired but unarmed. "What?" I asked. and I could see that she handed me the potion with reluctance. "Come on." he said from behind me. "Yeah… I'm not done here. You and him both. So many layers of dust in the air that you could not even see the sun anymore.
"Where are we?" Andre shrugged slightly. "Lost souls" said Andre sadly.I chuckled still looking around. "I can't stay too long. I looked for a way to exit this purgatory for months afterwards. I could read his heart as easily as he could read mine." He took a deep breath." "So what I'm seeing is just an illusion?" I wondered gesturing around. where you see only what you want to." "But we're not lights!" "Well that you know of. but when I came back to the 'real' world only a couple of months had past." "Don't worry I'm sure that when you'll find his soul you'll know it. who would ever want to see such a lame place?" I grimaced. "Well let's not take the chance anyways." I looked at him. "I don't really know but I think I would call it 'purgatory' I guess. "Point taken. After a while I realized that you probably made it. Andre was right. "Ok then close your eyes and visualize yourself there. I… you're the one who knows him best. "How…how do you know all that?!" He shrugged burying his free hand deep in his pocket. not that I thought I had fooled him for even a minute. But how am I supposed to find Dimitri? They all look the same!" I almost shouted as the panic increased. in a world like that." He said keeping his grip on my hand." "I guess…"." . if anyone could find his soul. we still have time Rose. "Don't panic." "Uh…" I grunted." He said still keeping my hand in his and it felt good to have an ally here. it was me. we completed each other. It looked a lot like an abandoned city that would be shown in horror movies. An hour here…" he shrugged "it's merely minutes there. "Just like us." I said a bit harsher than I intended. "How would I know?" He smiled guiltily "I sound far more sure than I am really but…well I think that is the reality because let's face it. that you were both alive." "Purgatory uh? And the lights… what are the lights?" I asked pointing to the weird looking stars flying around. I said jadedly. "Ok. We need to find his soul as soon as possible. "You're the only one able to find it Rose. "That's how I know time doesn't work the same because I thought I spent at least a year or two here. "After the accident I…I was lost. It should take us in this part of that world. I guess you can say that. where would his soul be?" "I…" I looked around trying to think. but it was a way to hide my fear. I saw my parents once but I didn't see Lissa. but I couldn't move on until I was sure you would be ok. "Spirits…Spirits only see what they want to see. Dimitri and I were very similar. As for the time well it goes a lot faster here than there. I didn't know she survived so I started to look for her…and for you for what seemed like months. "Well I can think about 2 or 3 places" I said unsure. both of you.
" He shook his head.. "After a while I just noticed that I couldn't. When I opened my eyes. "Anyways let's concentrate on the problem ahead." There and in my arms I added to myself." He smile "Maybe I will be able to move on now. real in that world?" Andre shrugged "I don't think so. ." I said truly impressed. unstable. you'll see each other." He sighed.. "Damn!" I shouted before pursing my lips. but seeing it in different shades of grey made it cold and impersonal…maybe that's what 'purgatory' was all about. I swore so much when I tried to find my way out that I should have been stricken by lighting at least a thousand times. "The ultimate help. Trying to understand the mime was tiring. Now that he was a talking ghost I rather liked asking the questions. didn't want to leave." I said closing my eyes and tightening my grip on Andre's hand. I even saw Dimitri. "Yeah well… that's better than nothing" I said already grateful he was there to guide me knowing that he was costing him the small freedom he had left. I was in the middle of the small living room."But why didn't you move on?" I asked curiously. "Siberia it is" said Andre squeezing my hand. standing in front of the altar. hearing his voice was like a vacation." "Dimitri…" I whispered." Said Andre securing his grip to my hand. if you both want to see the same thing. "Well I was thinking about the Academy chapel first." "So every soul that is here has--" "Yeah something to accomplished or feel like it. we were in the chapel. As I told you in that reality spirits only see what they want to see but I'm pretty sure that." "And yet here you are." "But is the chapel. head down. "It's ok" Andre chuckled 'believe me. on the back pews." " 'Pretty sure'?" I groaned. When I opened my eyes this time. eyes wide. remembering where I was. like. "Religious dude?" I smile sadly. "No he is not really religious it's just…he liked to go there. "Very pretty sure?" He tried with a wink.In a chapel in the freaking Purgatory. Everything was in black and white but there were no spirit…no Dimitri at least. "Well I couldn't move on before making sure that you guys handled it then…then I got worried as Lissa grew. I closed my eyes tightly and envisioned the Chapel." Andre grimaced. "Where next?" "Baia…His mothers' house. he found peace there. lets say. Everything was there. "Ok…close your eyes and visualize it.
the finish line is irrelevant for now. The first time I kissed him after the lust spell. "Well just try to focus on your next step. "Maybe he is in another room. but my soul was at stake here…I had the right to panic a bit. reading one of his mother's precious books. slightly crazy Rose that believed everything was possible once she set her mind?" Asked Andre sitting beside me." "I…." I took a deep breath and threw my hands up in defeat. "Yeah…" I whispered mostly to humor him because I was completely unconvinced by that." I locked eyes with Andre and did my best to contain my tears." I said closing my eyes. I envisioned it but this time I included the fighting session with Dimitri. "I don't know where to find him now. at the Academy in Siberia or--" "Maybe we don't take the problem from the right angle. I was scared of failing so close to my goal. "She grew up…and lost her illusions. what's the third one?" I nodded. "Hey hey!! What's this kind of talk? Where is the bubbly. "In his room. "Rough life. he was right. It was all up to me now and I was also scared of being stuck in this place for the rest of eternity. "He could be anywhere." I mumbled. the more I'll start to blend in. "So…" "The gym. I mean right now you are looking for places that meant something to him. Robert told me. "I'm getting low on options here.I hoped to find Dimitri's spirit sitting on the sofa. When I opened my eyes and saw the gym empty. "Dimitri?" I called and felt completely silly." Andre stayed quiet. his hand on my shoulder. I sat on a bench with my head between my hands. "Please enlighten me. I thought of the main places that he could be. so much that it actually hurt me to see the sofa empty." . I don't know. "I'll never find him. the one when we shared our kiss." "Maybe he is somewhere that means something to you both. "Panic is not helping is it?" He asked rhetorically. St Vladimir. "So you said 2 or 3 places. "Dimitri?" I called again from the top of the stairs before opening the bedroom door and it was empty but the little pinch in my chest made me realize that I had hoped to find him in there.don't know. the more I stayed in the spirits world." "For you maybe." I shrugged slightly. "Rough year eh?" I snorted." Andre said probably noticing the hurt on my face." I said defeated. It was annoying to admit it. the one that Viktoria had when I stayed in Baia." "Oh yeah?" I snorted. making it harder and harder to find a way out. I walked up the narrow stairs trailing Andre behind and went straight to his old room." I said getting worried and scared at the same time.
it's not safe. Rose deserves it." I gasped as I saw him sitting on the bed. "Do you hear that?" I asked jumping from my seat looking around. where would you go?" "I…" I could feel my cheeks starting to burn as I had flashes of Dimitri's long strong hands on my bare hips. what?" "I'll do it!" said Adrian "We'll have to stop soon. "Roza!" He shouted jumping from the bed and pulling me into a bear hug." "Oh shut it! I heard you did much worse esp--" "He is falling over the edge!" Lissa shouted. his eyes boring into mine. "What did you do?" "Well it's a bit more complicated but---" I took his hand. . and I saw you by the exit. if it were you. I was following you and I felt a sharp pain on my neck. we were in the caves. at least not yet." "I…How do you know?" "Trust me."Each time I heard people talk about you two it was like you were meant to be. "Dimitri's is dying. " The last time I saw you. "Dimitri. "He is going to be shadow-kissed" Said Victor. "No." I closed my eyes envisioning the cabin." "One of those old slums?!" Andre grimaced. I spent years and years looking for you my Roza. "Are we…are we dead? Oh Rose. "What happened?" He asked letting go of me and resting his hands on my shoulders. "I don't care I have to do it." his voice broke. of our naked bodies tangled together. Since Lissa and I can't risk it." "We need to find his soul now!" I said taking Andre's hand. It will drain you Adrian. "Not cool dude. Apparently even if we were in shades of grey he could notice a blush. like you knew each other better than anyone else." I added reaching for Andre's hand." It had been 4 months since I lost him. "So Rose…Where is it this wicked place would be?" "A Cabin… in the woods just behind the Academy. but you were nowhere to be found. So tell me Rose. "Now we're talking" Said Andre with a grin. "we're not dead." Said Oksana apparently worried. "What do we do?!" Asked Oksana. When I opened my eyes I let out a sigh of relief. it had to be an eternity here. I think I passed out because…because I woke up I was here. but we need to move. "I wanted you to know that I loved you. even if we weren't together it was fine and…" he stopped dead looking at Andre. "Roza?" He looked at me like I was an apparition which was rather ironic since I was a spirit.
There were no lights in this world. Only you can find and materialize the exit' "Roza I--" "Shush. I frowned seeing a faint light coming from our left." Said Andre squeezing my hand. almost at the road and the voices were so clear it was like they were beside me. The dude was really out of it. "Precious!" Said Adrian through clench teeth. I decided to follow the flow of voices. I tried to concentrate only on the voices and not on the meaning of the conversation because the worry and stress wouldn't help me and I knew it. I heard them before. you are linked to this place. "I really don't know how much more you can take. but still holding Dimitri's and Andre's hand." I shook my head and started to look for an exit even more frantically. "Well it better be fast I can't even think straight anymore." Adrian's voice was strained. a huge and beautiful hole of light. You are special. I knew it was not an illusion. "I…don't know how much longer I'll be able to do it by myself. I…We'll talk later okay. I…It can be dangerous. "How can we even know if his soul is back?" Asked my father and I could hear both worry and anger mixed in his voice." "Your aura is all over the place" Said Lissa with worry in her voice. I said to myself and feeling his spirit hand in mine. I was still connected to them…to my body. . I could remember Victor translating Roberts' thoughts to me. "Do you see anything?" "No nothing…why?" Asked Dimitri. I need to find an exit. It was silly." The closer we got. "I know…" I whispered scrutinizing the place around me. "Well if you don't see it.I pulled them out starting wander in the woods. I'd never been closer to the truth. Save his soul…it's in your hands. it had to be it. 'You are part of the rare one who went to the land of the dead and made it back alive. The exit "This way" I said jerking my head on the direction I was seeing the light. He will have an aura again" Said Robert flatly." I said trying to concentrate on the people on the other side. the brighter the light became and there it was. you'll need to guide him in it. that was our best bet. "When the light reenters the body the healing hands will know. I bet that to an outsider we looked like three little kids holding hands. I tried to visualize the faces of all the people I loved back with the living. it's good a good sign. where my body was. "It has to be here somewhere…Very close" I said stopping. We were almost at the end of the forest behind the Academy. "We probably won't see it.
" I couldn't help but chuckle. "Wow he disappeared! That's awesome. a bright hole to go back to the land of the living. keeping it open." He said with urgency standing straight looking at me like he did so many times when he had set his mind to something and wasn't ready to budge." Dimitri nodded. He finally nodded reluctantly. "Can't you see it at all? Not even a tiny glitch of light I mean wow…it's literally blinding me. lips pursed. "Dimitri you--" "No Roza you go first. I looked at him and reached for his hand. I felt so relieved that I couldn't contain my laugher." Said Dimitri narrowing his eyes. do as I say and go first." "I will. You're both going to be alright. I'll see you on the other side." I smiled widely. "No surprises there. Come on.It made sense. but after all I'm dead meat so…" Andre shrugged. "It's just there!" I said letting go of Andre's hand pointing right ahead. "Nada. It means 'it's-okay-I-found-it' in exhausted Rose language." I let go of his hand and went to stand beside the hole." Dimitri looked at me. "You won't. "Okay now you take five steps to your side…Okay and walk toward me in a straight line. "I don't want to lose you again" he said in a breath. "I'll miss you." "Sure?" Andre nodded." Said Andre with a smile." I said smiling. For once." Dimitri walked a straight line and entered the light. "That's very noble of you comrade but I'm the only one seeing the door." Andre smiled and shook his head negatively." "Of course…I'm Awesome!" . I realized now why I missed Andre and it would be like… it would be like losing him a second time around. a black hole to go to the land of dead. "Are you sure you don't want to try too? I mean…Maybe if we go together it might work. just this once. "I'll meet you there. "Roza…Stay with me. everything would be right from now on. I smiled and reached up to cup his cheek. "No I think I'm done here." "Nothing. trust me. "Don't worry." I quickly looked up at Andre and couldn't help the little twinge of pain in my heart. "Roza are you ok?" "She is fine.
"The hole is still here. "You're a fuc--" "She knew the risks. "Her light might be stuck on the other side. "I can't cross again!" "Try once more." "She possibly won't make it back" said Robert. almost sad and that was a first with Andre Dragomir. "I have to go back" I said straightening up. "Oh really? And of course you…" Adrian literally growled. I---" "You are just as stupid as she is!" Said Victor emotionless.I chuckled and when I stepped in the bright light it was like colliding with a force field that sent me backward into Andre. "I don't know but it's not good. "No!" Said Sydney stubbornly." Andre looked thoughtful. I reached for it with my hand and was rejected. If she doesn't make it back. "Are you sure? There is not a little tiny part of you that -" "No! I would never even consid--" I stopped frozen. "I swear to you Dashkov. "Are you sure you want to go back?" "What?! Of course!!" I said containing the urge to hit him. "He is back!" Said Lissa from the other side. "What's happening?" Asked Andre dumbfounded." Said Adrian and I could hear the increasing anxiety in his voice. "Do you think I fucking care?! Give it to me!" Shouted Adrian. you are not the one getting electrocuted!" I mumbled approaching the hole warily. Idiot!" Adrian added but I knew it was only fear and anger talking." I didn't even bother to try and hide my panic." Robert said." "Right. "She knew she might not make it back" "Of course she did!! Rose is Rose. "Give me that fucking potion or so help me god---" "Adrian! Do you think Rose would want you to put yourself in danger like that?!" "I need to find her! I'll go and look for her there. "Yes?" Andre encouraged. Mark my words! I--" "Andre help me!" I said with despair. you won't exit this house alive. "Things are getting out of hands there. "What?!" Roared Adrian and my father simultaneously. "Damn it!!" I shouted." Said Victor coldly. "What the--" I looked at Andre who shrugged loosing all his smugness. "Holly jolly it worked!" "Why isn't she back then…she has no aura. .
" "How long was I out?" "Three days. but gave up after seeing me struggling against him." "I won't…" I said concentrating on his voice only. "It's the middle of the night. panic evident in my voice. I grunted while I shifted to my side and heard movement as someone rushed by my side. "Dimitri!" I called looking around. Rose come back. He rested his cool hand on my forehead and it felt good. I was in Adrian's room at the Academy." "Rose please." "Three days?" I shrieked. "I brought him back. "I…Why am I here?" He shrugged. my room was the only option. I was trying to open my eyes but my eyelids were just too heavy. "You were out Rose." My eyes shot open and I jump into a sitting position. "I need to get back to them." Adrian said almost begging." I heard Andre whisper as everything faded to black. I saw a make shift on the sofa in the bedroom where he was probably sleeping. That was when I really passed out. My room. please let me go back. We made it. "He's okay Rose calm down." Adrian said soothingly trying to push me back on the bed. "Somebody restrain him!" My dad shouted. " Please. we couldn't leave you like that in your room. "I don't-" "Roza!" I heard Dimitri shout with a voice I barely recognized." I ignored his comment and looked around frantically." I heard Adrian say frantically from beside me."Well I was thinking that maybe…maybe it wouldn't be so terrible if I fell but it was before all that…Before I succeeded." I was in the purgatory after all. Was he trying to heal me? "Adrian?" "Yes I'm here Rose. Chapter 21: I moved around and realized I was far too comfortable to still be on the floor. The doc said you were out because of exhaustion and that you'd wake up when you felt like it so she wouldn't keep you at the clinic. "Why isn't she waking up?! She is back in! I can see her aura. you should sleep." I took a shaky breath. "I need to see Dimitri!" I jumped out of bed so fast he didn't even get a chance to try to stop me. it was the best place to pray. I closed my eyes and tried to get through the portal once more and this time…this time it worked! "Be happy Rose. I will never take life for granted ever again. "Rose?" Asked a voice as I recognized as Adrian. You can't give up now. .
" I couldn't stand not knowing what was different about Dimitri. well Lissa and I have a theory. "I'm capable of far more than it seems. he's probably sleeping. "Thank you for doing that. "You see Dimitri and I are shadow-kissed. but…" "But?" I encouraged gripping his hand and I was sure I was hurting him." "I always knew that. "My Dimitri is a Moroi?" I shrugged "I don't care. "He's…he's different too. I rested my forehead against the tiled wall." "Oh…" I said relieved that all he wanted to tell me was that. "Apparently… okay you see the reversion brought him back. "Different?" I gave him a narrow glare. It means a lot to me." I couldn't help but notice the hurt reflecting in his eyes. "What's happening Adrian?" "Well Dimitri…" He swallowed loudly." I looked at him for a minute and figured that he just needed a little time to get ready to tell me whatever he had to." "Well he…he sort of is a Moroi but--" . I had to admit that even if I was overly excited to see my Dimitri I was scared to hear what Adrian had to say to me." "I d--" I stopped and looked at him with wide eyes." I told him honestly "Yeah…" He grimaced slightly. well the body changed to the closest form of Strigoi. "or I'm sure I can have some food del–" "Adrian Please!" I snapped with begging eyes. As I let the hot water run on my painful muscles I tried to figure out how Dimitri could be different. "So…'' I said standing a couple of feet away from him." He smiled probably detecting my guilt over linking him with Dimitri forever. "I bet you are hungry or thirsty. but he didn't say anything." He added uncomfortably. "Tell me what you have to tell me."It's night Rose. I closed my eyes. I sat beside him on a stool. quickly putting on the pair of faded blue jeans and red sweatshirt that were waiting for me in the bathroom. Just tell me where he is staying I need to see him. The water was starting to get cold. "I couldn't have lived with myself if I hadn't done it you know. "Well…" Adrian cleared his throat loudly. Was he blind or deaf or even mute? "Why on earth would he be mute?" I muttered to myself." He shrugged dismissively. "See. I sighed and got out of the shower. I nodded. "Different how?" "Why don't you just go take a quick shower. Just…Just go. When I walked in the living room Adrian was sitting on a bar stool with a steaming cup in front of him. we think that once we reversed the state. there is fresh clothes for you in the bathroom and nobody is going anywhere I promise. Do you want some coffee?" He said pointing at his cup. and right now a shower did sound pretty good.
but for not more than 10 minutes and when we realized. He is my strength as I'm his. "What aren't you telling me?" "Well Victor and Robert aren't here and--" "Wow Victor is back in jail already? That was fast!!" I said amazed. to feel his body against mine. in the last three days he didn't take blood at all and it appears that he doesn't need any…yet. I thought crossing my arms on my chest. and apparently the sun doesn't bother him at all and well." "We'll talk tomorrow.. "He knew… He knew all along. "Of course" he said and I could see his smile was forced. "Sorry what? I think I didn't hear you right. So our attention was otherwise occupied. they were gone! It was too perfect. He's staying in the last room at the end of the corridor." I let out a humorless laugh.I couldn't hold my exasperation any longer and even if I knew I would feel bad for that in the morning I threw a small fit. super vision and super smelling is concerned. "You are right Rose." I said and I couldn't help feeling guilty. "We were worried you weren't waking up and Dimitri was well…let's just say he didn't take all the Strigoi memories that well and you know how lethal he was right? Well he kept his strigoi strength so imagine how hard he was to restrain." "They esc--" I choked on the word." He said sheepishly." "But?" "But he is also sort of a dhampir and he is as strong as he was before.I'll have a word with him in the morning now tell--" I stopped seeing Adrian's face whiten even more. but he was playing us. "We don't know where they are. "We thought we were playing him. "For god sakes Adrian spit it out already!" Adrian straightened up and I saw the hurt in his eyes. "not that it matters really. I'm the only one that can heal him" Adrian stayed quiet for a minute thoughtful. "Well excuse me Miss 'I'm-perfect' !" Adrian snapped. I could see pain on his face along with resignation.We are linked you know." I nodded but I was hopeful. but I feel the core of his emotions and…well it's hard. "It's ok. but I needed to be with Dimitri so much. I'll apologize later." "They escaped.. it's time for me to give him mine. He let me borrow his strength. "They were in the room with 4 guardians! How --It's--" I shook my head. you should go to him. "Well he is a Moroi as far as pale complexion. I'll heal him. I sighed with despair. his lips on mine that I couldn't concentrate on anything else…what kind of friend was I? . He's healed me so many times before. but." I nodded. I can't see in his head. "That's something Victor could have told us…" I shook my head. fangs and super hearing." I shook my head and couldn't help but be impressed." "You know Dimitri is having a hard time dealing…dealing with what he did .
" I said stopping him from talking as I pulled his shirt up and started to kiss his chest while letting my tongue play on his skin between each kiss. that intoxicating sent. but he was kissing me back almost immediately afterward. The love of my life is back I thought before crashing into his chest taking in his familiar sent. He took a couple of steps back. I found the door with my foot and kicked it shut. But now. I started to kiss him feverously locking my arms around his neck to keep him to me. we'll talk tomorrow I just want to be with you. it was like the light at the end of the tunnel. but I didn't care. I slid my hands under his shirt and started to let my fingers trail on Dimitri's perfect stomach. "I love you too. like we never stopped. playing with the top of his Pj pants." he whispered with clear relief burying his face in my hair and hugging me back fiercely. Dimitri groaned. maybe it was because he was undead that he smelt differently. I put my hands in the waistband of his pants and pulled him to the bedroom. but it was not the sent I was longing for. I knew I was acting like a kid. Dimitri opened the door and I didn't notice his skin complexion or his fangs or any other changes. vulnerability in my voice. with every fiber of my being" he said before crashing his lips on mine and kissing me almost painfully. probably surprised by the intensity of my kiss. "Oh my Roza…" He whispered again kissing the top of my head. Dimitri just nodded helping me to get his shirt out of the way. I found his lips with mine. I smiled against his skin. I removed mine too and it was like living again to feel his hands on me. There was no red in his eyes. I delicately moved my head. Dimitri was frozen for a moment. stood on my tip toes. Our lips were moving in totally sync. "Why? Don't you want to be with me?" I asked finally looking up.I ran to Dimitri's room and almost took down the door by knocking so hard. like they could recognize each other. The room was silent except for our passionate kissing and ragged breathing. When he was a Strigoi Dimitri smelled divinely good of course. needing him to know. Dimitri laid me delicately on the bed and came towering on top of me. his cool skin against my burning one. "Roza…You're awake. "Roza wait --" "No. "I love you so much" I whispered against his lips. pulling me in the room. and as Dimitri was still leaning down. . The only thing I saw was his warm brown eyes. now he smelt just like I remembered. that was all that mattered to me.
" I said before kissing his chest. I could feel his fangs but I didn't care..I looked at his beautiful face. I looked at his perfect profile for a minute. Dimitri kissed me up the neck to my mouth again. "I'll never lose you again" I said closing my eyes. I'll go begging in the rain. We finished taking off our clothes in less than five minutes. Was it all a dream? I thought as a terrible pain clutched my chest. it literally made my chest ache with love. but my dhampir vision helped me to see that he was lost in his thoughts and whatever he was thinking hurt him. hurt him in his flesh. not holding me into your arms." Recognition filled his eyes. I let my hand roam on the other side of the bed and my heart skipped a beat when I found it empty. I knew him enough to see that even if I gained my redemption Dimitri needed to get his salvation." I added wrapping my arm around his strong waist. I leaned in his touch and closed my eyes. it's unforgivable. I knew him better than anyone else. "Plus I can't sleep knowing you are a couple of feet away from me. Dimitri started to caress my hair gently." I turned my head slightly and kissed his palm. he could try as hard as he wanted. you didn't have much inhibition when you loved and missed someone as much as we did. flushed with lust. as our bodies connected in every possible ways that he needed me as much as I needed him. He smiled. "I missed you so much. I woke up later than night feeling content and whole for the first time it what seemed an eternity. When it comes to you I have no shame. We were just meant to be. I was as much his redemption as he was mine. with his hair falling around his face like a halo. That night was everything I hoped for and more. if I can spare you any pain. I inched closer and touched his arm. my ear on his chest to listen to his slow heartbeat. His eyes were lit with the same desire than I felt. Dimitri was a very attentive and gentle lover. "That's true. "Roza?. I can hear it all. "I'm here for you." His smile was brighter now but I could see the underlying sadness and distress behind it. "Dimitri? Are you alright?" I asked sitting up. it was as simple as that." I said with a mock scowl. "Talk to me Dimitri…please. sitting at the foot of the bed completely naked looking at the wall. "Dimitri?" He turned his face briskly and he had to be really lost in his thoughts. He was only slightly illuminated by the alarm clock. That pain faded the instant I opened my eyes as I saw Dimitri. I finally thought that everything would be alright. As soon as he was back in the bed I closed the small distance between our bodies and cuddled with him. I realized feeling his strong shaky hands on my bare hips. "Move" he said standing up before joining me under the covers. Here. "You should sleep Roza" he said finally bringing his hand to my cheek gently brushing my cheekbone with his thumb pad. clinging the bed sheet on my bare breasts. He was still looking in front of him like he didn't hear me. "I slept for three days." I said as he started to kiss my collarbone sensually. .
but contrary to the first time that night when it was sometimes rough. "I love you" I said moving up slowly to gently brush his lips with mine. "That's why we are here" he said with a small smile. When I walked into the living room Dimitri was just setting a steaming cup of coffee and some buttered toasts. Dimitri chuckled. almost animalistic filled with lust." I smiled. looking at me with a small smile. hopped in the shower and dressed quickly. to engrave it in our memory." He got out of bed so fast that I would have missed it if I blinked. "You should go check on your friends Roza. the only change came from his faster heartbeat. "A very good morning indeed. I shivered with anticipation and looked up to meet his troubled yet loving eyes. actually I could even say that he was as fast as his Strigoi self." He said after a little while holding his cup. "They were going crazy worrying about you. As soon as Dmitri left the room I jumped out of bed." He added as his hand left my hair and started to roam slowly down my spine. I couldn't help to wonder how long he had been awake for because he sounded so wide awake. "I need to feed you. "But you were right we have tomorrow so lets enjoy each other's presence tonight. I kissed his neck. "I know you are here Roza. He looked at me with my brows furrowed. "I'll be over in two minutes" I said scanning the room for my clothes. This time was a lot slower. Adrian didn't kid when he told me that his reflexes where different. I know you do. softer. as if we were taking time to rediscover each others bodies. need and desire. We made love again. "I'm not going anywhere Roza. . Dhampir Dimitri had been fast. "I love you more than I can say. Dimitri sat across. My stomach growled embarrassingly loudly." I nodded reluctantly. I'll be here when you're done I swear. "Roza?" "Yeah. He brought his hand that was on my back to the back of my head to keep me in place. but this one was even faster." And oddly enough he sounded almost pained by the idea. He probably saw the confusion on my face.Dimitri stayed quiet for a little bit still caressing my hair." I said in a sleepy voice snuggling even more against him. lets enjoy what is right. "Good morning Roza" he said tightening his hold around my waist. When I woke up that morning Dimitri was holding me tightly and I had my face buried in his neck." He said probably understanding my reluctance to leave him. Whatever happens from now on it will never change. "Come on Roza" he said loosening his hold around my waist." He said before deepening our kiss.
"I'll see you in a bit" I told him standing up. . we were worried sick". maybe trying to find an exit.. By the way. so I would do the same. Dimitri spent most of the time in his room and I knew it was not good for his peace of mind but we decided that it would be a terrible idea to make him reappear at the academy now as we were about to leave. I just couldn't put a name on it. but I couldn't imagine my mother as a sexual being even if she had to do it at least once in her life to have me. made me long for his touch even more. well you know. " I knew it sounded childish."Yeah…" I quickly glanced at the clock on the wall. now I could! I really would need therapy. But Janine Hathaway was just…she was just so serious. you better. "I…" She blushed looking quickly around her. I knew him well enough to know it was the way he was. I quickly got up to my father's floor and stopped frozen when I saw the person doing the walk of shame from his room. As expected my father and friends were just ecstatic to have me back and well. I thought that you just spent the night in my fathers' room." I shook my head." I pointed to her shirt again "See you later" she said giving me a quick hug before rushing to the lift. Most of the youngsters wouldn't understand and it would be more polemical than anything else. "Why couldn't you?" She asked dismissively.. head high. Dimitri and I hadn't been intimate since that first night and knowing he was so close to me. "That was…awkward" I muttered once the door closed on her. like something wasn't right. I felt bad for them. "It's not what you think!" "Oh cool. "I…" She straightened up. "I'll see you later. She decided to ignore the situation. "You're wearing it the wrong way. "Uh huh…" I said not able to conceal my smile. I had to help Dimitri and keep Lissa safe. so mechanical. "Awww Mom. "I'll be waiting for you" he said before giving me a quick chaste kiss. "I see you are awake. but even if I wanted I couldn't help. I quickly finished my cup. I couldn't picture her doing what I just did in between the sheets…." I pointed to her shirt. I'm so happy. Over the next few days I helped get ready for our move to Court and get ready for graduation the following week. "Mom!" I said as my mouth popped open. but I figured that he needed time before confiding in me. They were my only priorities. Dimitri walked me to the door holding my hand. "You better" I said teasing but I still had an uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach.Dang. Dimitri was a bit distant. it was still very early but I was sure that my father would be awake. "I was just coming to tell Abe that I was better can I go in or…" I pointed to his door. still having pillow creases on her face. I was informed that the two Secret Service agents had somehow been held responsible for Victor's disappearance and that they were both on the mission to bring him back.
It's--" Started Dimitri he sounded tired. strained. "Why on earth did you tell me all that? I don't even like you! Hell right now I think I even loathe you!" Dimitri stayed quiet for a couple of seconds and I couldn't help the increasing panic to fill me. she wants YOU! She LOVES YOU" "I---" "I shouldn't have saved you" Adrian spat. that was contorted with fury. . "Yeah you do that. I decided to sneak into the guest pavilion that afternoon as I really wanted to be with him. I walked into the room. His eyes was full of sorrow. "Adrian? Dimitri? What's going on here?" I asked with a shaky voice realizing I had some fresh tears running down my cheeks. "I'll always be here" he said before gently kissing my cheek." He walked away but stopped just beside me.So. You love her enough to die for her." Said Dimitri quietly. like each word was costing him. "I did it for Rose. I didn't think that anyone could sneak up on Dimitri ever again. However. we just…" He quickly glanced at Adrian. "It's alright Roza. "I don't know but maybe you've mistaken Rose with some kind of perishable goods. A hurt deep in my chest. The silence made everything so much worse. how you are suffering to see her loving someone else." "At least we agree on that." Adrian snorted. "Do you even know Rose? I thought you knew her better than anyone else did. as soon as I entered the room. Adrian face. I wanted to surprise him. I grinned opening the door. Adrian and Dimitri were fighting and I was only too scared to discover the reason of it. "How are you going to break that to her?" "I don't know" Said Dimitri with defeat. Maybe he was ready to share with me now. the love you feel for her. It was quiet. I--" "And do you think it makes things alright?!" Asked Adrian with disbelief getting even angrier. "Because you love her. maybe he was waiting for me after all. but I should have let you die. Well… it was a bit of a lost cause since. I wanted to move from my hidden spot I just couldn't. softened almost immediately when he locked eyes with me." "It's not that Ivashkov and you know it. "That's why you made me come?" Asked Adrian in a cold harsh tone. She doesn't want me. "I need to talk to you. I wanted to know more. I could hear some hush voices coming from the living room. you don't deserve her and she would have been better without you. I tried the door knob silently to check if the door was open. Dimitri stayed silent for a little while after Adrian left." Said Dimitri with so much pain that he got me out of my stupor. but it was clearly an argument and I knew both voices so well I couldn't make a mistake. "I saw it in your head. with his freakishly acute hearing.
maybe I'll…I don't know.. You lent me your strength.. "That's a given. "Take my strength and let me heal you. please tell me you are joking" I added fighting the tears with all the strength I had. "I remember it just the same. Let me be here for you. "I can hear it all. I didn't know what I did as a Strigoi and I need to forgive myself for--" "But it wasn't you!" I said rushing toward him and taking his hand. There wasn't much I could have done except." "Like hell I don't!" I shouted having more and more trouble containing my tears. I quickly took a step back. "Please comrade enlighten me. "Please tell me you are joking" I repeated as anger." he sighed and ran his hands through his hair." I knew he was tortured and discovering that he didn't intend to leave me forever calmed me slightly. you helped me so many times. "Please." "When will you come back?" "I don't know. he knew all the sacrifices. maybe I'll visit my family in Baia for a while may. for a while at least. I was the face of death Rose and inside or not…" He shook his head. "I'm leaving" he said softly." "You don't understand Roza. his eyes were even sadder. "I…no" he said taking a step toward me. "I don't know. The begging eyes of the victims when they realized they were going to die. I have to deal with that by myself." "I didn't remember then. "Please tell me you are not taking back every promise you ever made me. You said you'll never let go. that you needed to be with me. I need to deal with my past to construct a future with you.." "I. Talking about that Lissa is--" "No you don't understand I'm leaving…alone. "Oh…" I let out in a wheezing sound like someone just punched me in the stomach." He said and it had the effect of a slap."Talk to me Dimitri please." I smiled "I'm leaving too. leaving or even surrendering. but just talk" I added trying to sound much stronger than I felt. he was rejecting me." He said and I could hear the guilt in his voice. You can be open with me…Vulnerable" I said remembering the chat we had in the gym just after Mason's death when he recognized how hard it was for him to admit that I could read him." "But I'm here. "I can't deal with that. "You were not inside anymore." I took his other hand. "I need to heal Rose. betrayal and pain were filling me gradually. What could I say? He knew how I felt. " Dimitri looked down at me." . "But you said you wouldn't let go when I found you on the other side. "Where will you go?" I asked barely louder than a whisper looking down at our intertwined hands. staying. "I need to go Rose. we all are. except maybe trying to hide how much it hurt. I'll be back I…I couldn't give up on us. all the risks I took to have him back and he wanted to leave anyways.." I said deciding to break the silence before it could drive me mad.
" Apparently you don't Comrade. Dimitri had a sad smile. "Of course I do!" He said sounding offended. But I knew I had to go now. I thought but I kept it to myself simply letting go of his hands. how can I build a future if I can't deal with my past? How can I create memories when I only want to destroy the ones I have?" "You've got to do what you've got to do. "And I'll be back I swear. Your friends need you. I have to do that Roza. "I want to come with you. I could even taste the bile in the back of my throat. you just need to go on with your life while I try to make peace with myself and forgive what I did. "You have to understand Roza I--" "I do Dimitri" I said cutting him off. but I'll see you later" I said walking backward toward the door. That was what I should have said. I breathe." I said looking up. I was not lying except that I still had two hours before meeting her.I nodded slightly. I need to do this alone and I know that you of all people can understand that. but I just kept staring at him without a word. your family needs you." I said and I was pleased that I didn't sound nearly as hurt as I felt. On my way there I couldn't help but hear the lyrics of Alive by Leona Lewis. but once you entered my life you were far more important than all my stupid fears and my stupid pride." I was like that before I met you. still looking down while blinking my tears away. consciously or not. "No Roza. "You know how much I need you Roza. it beats But inside I'm freezing My hands shake They've lost all their feeling Nowhere to take You say that you're leaving And there's no turning back this time Gotta stay alive . at least not enough. "You can't jeopardize everything. I thought. "And I don't know when I'll be back" he said and I felt liked I was being slapped yet again. I could feel physical pain. It hurt so bad. go before I'd beg him again to stay or to take me with him." "But you don't" I said trying to sound as neutral as I could. I hear But I don't believe it My heart. "I need to go and meet Alberta about graduation. taking two steps back silently. "Roza--" "I'll see you later" I said rushing out of the room almost running back to my room. I looked at my watch.
I didn't forget to mention the friends we lost during the battles and all those generic things they wanted to hear. He was just a shadow for us but I knew that. "You were perfect my Roza. I talked about the great future ahead of us." . I would have jubilated thinking about sticking it up high in the butt of my detractors but now…it didn't mean that much anymore. I didn't want to go too personal as I barely held it together as it was.Where do I go when I'm so alone? Where do I turn when you are so close? We try not to crash but we still collide Tears I've cried. When I walked up I found him still staring out the window. it would be like standing in front of me for him. things that made my heart ache. I took off my ugly graduation gown and threw it on the pile with the others." he said not turning around. After the congratulations. just to have him abandon me? Epilogue 1 week later: Here I was standing before the crowd coming to congratulate us on our achievement. I found him on the far right corner. with his brand new vision and hearing. "It's time to partyyyy!!" said Eddie swinging his hips shoving me. it would have meant the world to me not more than 6 months ago. I would be lying if I didn't recognized that it made me proud but it actually made me proud BECAUSE it made my friends and family so proud. I'll survive I'm alive Yes I was alive but would this new pain inside fade? Would he really come back to me? Why did I have to fight so hard to get him back. We were now full grown dhampirs ready to die for the Moroi we were trained to protect. I could feel that same pride coming from Lissa. Finally. "You bet" I said with a wide smile. I looked on the left and saw Adrian standing at the back of the crowd and even if he was far I could read so many things in his face." I winked at them trying to sound as cheery as I could before entering the dhampirs' dorm and rushing to the window where I saw Dimitri. I looked at the people before me and I could see the pride in my father's and mother's eyes. "I'll meet you in a little bit. I cleared my throat and did what they were all expecting from me. even Christian looked proud! Mark and Oksana stayed too for my graduation and the Moroi's one tomorrow. I was graduating top of the class. "You guys go ahead" I said to my family and friends. I looked up to the top floor of the dhampir dorm as I knew Dimitri would be watching the ceremony from there. "You didn't put much of yourself in the speech but I guess I can understand why.
"Rose…" He took two quick strides to stand just in front of me. for neither of us. I wanted to kick him like each time he was saying that. He sighed again reaching for his bag. "I love you. "I…" I looked at him confused before looking around. I stiffened in his arms. It was hard to be rational when you felt abandoned. I didn't look up. "It is indeed" he said finally turning around. He kissed my lips slowly. but I needed to keep the appearances. You did that enough." I said hurt. I said to myself. they love you. keeping my eyes leveled on his chest. it was not like I could change anything anyways. you'll always be in my mind." He too a deep breath and lift my face with his forefinger. I kissed his chest." I said instead. "You know that it's not because I don't love you right? I love you more than I thought was possible. "I'll come back. "I just needed to see you graduate Roza.Because I'm heartbroken and on the verve of breaking down every minutes of every day since you told me that you were leaving me. "It just not enough right now." And what about what is important to me uh? Like you being beside me? I thought yet again stopping myself from expressing my thoughts but I was not sure I fooled him as I saw a shadow in his eyes. I sighed closing the distance between our two bodies resting my forehead on his chest. remorse and haunting memories. No shit Sherlock! I thought bitterly. don't put your life on hold because I'm not here. He brought his cool hand on my neck making me shiver like every time his skin touched mine. "Yeah well I needed to reach the majority and my experience with life today is a bit peculiar. "Your friends are probably looking for you" said Dimitri tightening his grip around me. it was…It was important for me. "But you should continue to live your life Rose. I didn't even notice the quiet tear that escape my eyes before he softly dried it with the pad of his thumb. He nodded slowly. "Go to your friends Rose. It was the first time that kissing Dimitri was actually hurting me. It was like saying 'I will probably not come back so don't hold your breath and just move on' . you know that" he said and I could hear the profound sadness in his voice." . My eyes locked on the beige duffle bag on the floor. "Yeah you're right you better go. I could see the love and hurt in his eyes but I could also see his guilt." He said locking his eyes on the bag too. I kept my eyes on it silently like if I stared to it long enough it would just disappear. it's---Never doubt of my love Rose it's the only thing in this world that is unchangeable and deeply anchored in every fiber of my being. "Already?" I asked trying to keep my voice from shaking as a lump formed in my throat. "I'm going to miss you." "I know…" I said in a breath." He said now resting his cheek on the top of my head. "I'm leaving now. almost painfully like it was probably the last kiss we'll ever have." He kissed the top of my head. I knew it was what he felt he had to do but it still hurt me." "As I love you" he whispered in my hair.
When he stepped put the little door beside the huge iron gates and turned right after the guard post. it was half way from a groan and a cry. in one of the abandoned lounge facing the parking lot and I stayed in front of the window watching Dimitri soft steps as he was leaving my life once again. "I'll miss you more" I whispered once the door closed behind him. I kept my eyes locked on the gates even if he was gone now. "You are not fine Rose. too silent. I let out a sound that surprised me." "I did" he said simply. "Yeah I heard that speech a couple of times before but I have to give it to you. "Rose?" Asked Adrian walking slowly in the room. "He'll be back soon anyways." I shrugged." I nodded still looking out.for now. Did a part of me hoped he would come back? Love never was and never would be rational. maybe you can fool the others" he shrugged his left shoulder cocking his head to the side.I nodded hoping that the feeling of his lips against mine would linger for the length of his absence. "but you can't fool me. I walked to the other side of the building. "How are you doing Rose?" He asked and the solicitude in his voice made my heart tighten. "I'm doing fine. Adrian stayed silent. After was could have been mere minutes or an hour I heard light footsteps coming my way but I didn't move. ""He left" I said keeping my voice as steady and void of emotion that I could. Each of his step toward the iron gates were breaking my heart but I knew I couldn't do anything to keep him back.." "Oh yeah I forgot… you could see it in my aura" I said not able to contain the cold edge in my voice. the remaining part of my heart broke in a million pieces. I was just not enough. I could hear from his voice that he was closer to me than before. "I'll miss you" he said before turning around walking slowly to the back building staircase. it gets more credible every time you say it." I looked at him agape. without even a look behind. I repeated that speech so many times in my head that I even started to believe it myself. I appreciated him just being here silently. "How? If the other can't…how can you?" . "No. I was about to serve him the well prepared speech that I had been giving them for the past two weeks. "We're all expecting you downstairs. I can see it in your eyes. I won't say it's not a bit hard to watch him go but I understand why he has to do it. I forced a smiled and eyed him quickly before returning my attention on the window again. instead of going down to the party.. I know you are not fine. "But you knew that already. We stayed silent a bit longer." I turned slowly and locked eyes with him silently. since Dimitri and I announced them he would be going away for a while. However." I added as I had a little stabbing pain in my chest.
"Good to know but I'm still coming with you. "No she didn't but I know you Rose." I quickly glanced at Adrian but his face didn't give anything away. "I'm going to go and try to find Victor." "I…Pavel is coming with me. "Lissa told you?" I asked surprised that she would spill something like that. actually considering that." "It will get better Rose and as far as I could feel he really do love you. they are just denying it." How could he know me so well? I thought really impressed. "What do you want me to say Adrian?" "Anything. when you are feeling bad you have to go and fight some random crusade to make you feel better." He said with a sad smile. You need to talk to someone Rose and I would love to be that someone. He chuckled but it was not an happy laugh. just…anything as long as you mean it." "I'm not" He said keeping his eyes locked with mine. I know it's terrible to say that." He was still looking at me like I had two heads and if I wasn't so broken right now I would have laughed. "You don't seem surprised. "Doesn't make me feel better" I muttered to myself. "I'm just so mad and sad and betrayed and…everything in between. "I said okay. The new appointed guardians had the summer after graduation off and since Dimitri left I planned to use it. you can come with us. I took a deep breath and looked away again." I said not really knowing why but it was true. "You knew?" He nodded. like he is spitting on everything we did to bring him back. I decided to talk to her about me going hunt Victor. "Sorry what?" He asked wide eyes."I think they can. My father and even Pavel himself wanted to come to help me out. and I know." "I want to come with you. "I know you don't need my money this time or even my friendly pre--" "Okay" I blurted out stopping his ranting. He was one of the person that I trusted the most." "I know it's terrible but part of me feels like he betrayed me by leaving. She went ballistic at first of course but I told her it was just for the summer and that she could join me when everything would be settled for her at the Court and with her next semester at Lehigh. "I…Really?" He asked narrowing his eyes slightly thinking it was a trick. lips pursed." I looked at him silently a minute. It calmed her down quite a bit even if I knew that the Queen would keep her occupied for the whole summer. "I'm going away for the summer" I finally let out. Adrian didn't even seem surprise about it. . I couldn't talk to Lissa as she had enough to deal with." He said crossing his arms on his chest to show me his determination.
"Of course I want to!! I just never thought you would give in so easily. too depressed I knew that Adrian would tell me and I would go to him wherever he liked it or not. Why? Don't really want to come?" I asked with the ghost of a smile this time.I nodded. he just needs the specific date and the plane. intertwining our fingers. "In a week time." He said still suspicious." I said walking to the door not really knowing of what tomorrow will be made of." "Everything is organized already?" I nodded. "When are we leaving?" He asked once his surprise faded. the others are waiting. I knew it was more than unlikely for him to come back before the end of the summer of course. come back to me if he wanted too. Moreover. but I still needed that hope. Who would have thought even 6 months ago that I would have these kind of feelings toward my father? "Everything is ready. "I'm here Rose. Finally. I was bringing him along for a selfish and shameful reason…his link with Dimitri. . Firstly I did enjoy his company and he was very good at annoying me which would probably help me to keep my mind off Dimitri. I wanted Adrian around so Dimitri could find me. "Come on let's go. I gave him a small smile. "Wish granted" I replied finally turning my back to the window accepting that Dimitri would not be coming back today. that faith that it would be as hard for him to consciously live without me as it was for me to be without him. if Lissa knew I was bringing Adrian along it would ease her mind knowing that I would never put one of my friend at risk willingly…at least not really. probably Monday or Tuesday at the latest. no matter what" he said taking my hand. "Well I guess there is a first for everything" I said shrugging slightly. Secondly. "Yeah really." "I always dreamed to go on a road trip" he said teasing. "my father is very efficient" I said not able to conceal the fondness in my voice. "I know" I said knowing deep in my heart that it was the truth. we'll move to the Court during the week end and once I get my room assigned we should go. I promised Dimitri I would let him be. Pavel included. go on with my life and let him heal at his own pace but if he was feeling too low. I did have some ulterior motives to bring him along. But it was true. will be expecting me on the Court Runway.
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