Trace was sat at a dark table, the empty flute in front of him. I looked around me and saw I was on the sofa. Trace looked at me. He didn’t look impressed.
“You…are human” he said, the tension rising in his voice.
“Uh, yes, I guess” I stumbled over my words.
“Yes, you guess? You’re either human or not” he twisted himself around to look me in the eye.
“Well, I guess I’m human for now” I mumbled.
“Of course. If you were a pureblood human your blood would have tasted somewhat similar to ash. And I would have seen nothing in your blood”.
“You saw something?”
He nodded, still tense. “I saw your mother, father and yourself playing happy families while the foundations of your life crumbled away. I saw your family of vampires and your burning desire for one of them. A desire which hasn’t yet been ignited” he said bitterly.
Had he seen Nate? Was he tense because I knew who Nate was? I’m guessing things didn’t end happily for them.
“So, the question now is what to do with our human fugitive” Trace said, a little calmer.
I bolted for the door. Stupid move, really. He could move ten times faster than me and was probably a hundred times stronger than me, what are the odds I’d make it out the door? Before I’d barely even taken a step he was stood in the doorway. He tutted and shook his head. He took a step towards me. I’d never been more terrified. At least with Blade I’d been able to guess his personality. And I’d had Fang. What I wouldn’t give for an angry mood swing. But instead I was just stood there, gazing at Trace, trying to work out what he was going to do. And then came the tears. The thought of Fang made me think of Tawny and Lilith and…even Aya. The warm droplets of water rolled down my face and I felt Trace hug me. One arm pressed my head against his shoulder, leaving my neck completely exposed. So that was how he was going to do it. But he didn’t do anything, just held me in the hug ‘til I stopped crying.
“When are you going to kill me, Trace?” I asked bluntly.
“Kill you?” he asked. The shock in his voice was genuine, “It’s not me you need to worry about. I feed on humans. After all, vampires are gods and humans are sinners. Their salvation lies in the draining of their blood to sustain their gods. But you, are a different being completely. Existing as both species but neither at the same time. To kill one part of you would be to condemn the other”.
I wriggled out of his grip and shuffled away from him. I wasn’t afraid of him anymore but I didn’t like being that close to him. I’d never felt particularly comfortable being all that close with anybody. Except Fang. And Tawny. I wished they were there with me. Without them I felt like a child. A stupid child who went marching off to war with a toy gun and a saucepan for a helmet.
“Perhaps I could manage to make some time for you. As I know now, you and Morrigan are well acquainted so she shouldn’t mind you stealing some of her time. Then again, one bite would solve all these problems”.
“Wait, what happened to “killing one part of me would condemn the other”?” I asked, scrambling away from Trace who was making his way towards me.
“Your human side has been dying since the day of your birth. Why prolong the suffering?”
“Because she has much to live for” a light-hearted but sinister voice said from the doorway.
Trace looked round and sighed. There wasn’t time for me to look round and see who the voice belonged to as I was hauled up over someone’s shoulder.
“You always spoil my fun” Trace sulked.
There was a slight grunt from the person who’s shoulder I was on and they began walking out of the room.
“Trace, you should put the nose ring back in. I know Nate would like it” I said.
Trace began to follow whoever was carrying me out of the room.
“What did you say? You know…Nate?” he asked desperately.
“Know him? We have nicknames” I said.
Trace stopped and seemed to collapse in on himself. And then he disappeared from sight as I was taken out of Trace’s room and led towards the Colonial room. I was set down on the wooden desk that sat in the middle of the room. Shutting the door to the room was a boy maybe a year older than me. He had brown hair and was of muscular build. He had the overall appearance of a gentle giant. He turned and padded over to the desk with intense focus and drive. He stared at my eyes for a moment and nodded.
“You are in a very dangerous position right now. When Trace develops an interest in something he wants it to the point of obsession. But for you, your life hangs in the balance. Get on his bad side and he’ll rat you out to Ren or even worse, Amy. Give him any more reason to have an interest in you and you might not be human when you wake up. Do you see what I’m saying?” the stranger said.
I nodded. He looked at my eyes for another second and padded off to the corner of the room. Out of an expertly built cabinet he pulled a bottle of what I hoped was red wine and not more blood. He fished out something to hold the liquid in, which ended up being a cartoon goldfish mug, and gave them both to me.
“I’m not drinking it” I said.
“Don’t worry, it’s just wine” he said.
“I know, and I’m still not drinking it”.
“That’s all you have to drink in this place. Unless, you fancy the blood”.
“Nope, the wine’s fine” I said with a faked chuckle.
“Besides, it’s a way to keep Trace off your back”.
“And how exactly is me being inebriated going to help?” I asked, pouring as little of the wine as I could get away with.
“That’s all part of the plan, doll. Just you leave it to me” he said with a smile and poured out at least a quarter of the bottle into the mug.
“Alright, I’ll drink it but first… Who exactly are you?”
“The name’s Travis. Now, drink”.
“Fang, Tawny…don’t hate me for this” I muttered and drank.
Any idea what I’m getting myself into? No, me neither.