The smell of freedom...

Princess Erinna sat on the edge of bed in the room she had woken up in earlier after her pathetic dinner. She racked her thoughts, trying to figure out her next move because whatever happened, the Count could not come back and find her there.

This time he had hit her, who knew what he would do next?She felt a presence approach before the door quietly opened. She knew it was not the Count without even turning; his presence was too unsettling and dark too miss. The person softly closed the door as if afraid of drawing attention to them self.

Erinna glanced at the woman in alarm but she put her index finger on her lips, signalling Erinna not to make a sound. She was human, a bit buxom with excess flesh hanging from multiple places on her body, giving her a motherly look. She was vertically challenged and all round different from the rest of the maids Dracula had assigned to her; young beautiful maidens.

“I’m here to help you,” she whispered, swiftly covering the distance between them to come and sit next to Erinna.

“Who are you?” Erinna asked dubiously, alarm lights flashing obnoxiously in her head. Was Dracula trying to test her? What would he do to her if she failed this test?

“Angelica Wilson.”

“You’re human,” Erinna observed.

She was still suspicious of the woman and was not prepared to trust her.

“That I am milady.”

“Then why are you willing to risk your life for me? I’m an elf,” Erinna tried to reason with Angelica and understand where she was coming from, “The Count will kill you.”

“I know, but my life means nothing, neither does my husband’s.”

“I do not understand, you speak in riddles”

“Besides us being guardians, we owe your father our daughter’s life. He saved our daughter, now it’s time for us to save his.”

Erinna wanted to ask a lot of questions but knew their time was limited so she focused on the urgent ones. She did not believe it was right for Angelica to sacrifice her life for her even though Erinna’s father had somehow saved Angelica’s daughter.

“How did you even get in here?” The Count did not strike her as someone who would have unloyal servants on his team.

“Your father knew the Count would come for you; I offered to come here so we could have inside information if he ever managed to take you. I am one of the servants that were employed just before the Count woke up.”

“Woke up from where?” It seemed everything Angelica said roused more questions.

“Your father will explain everything. We do not have time. The Count is very suspicious and paranoid. My husband created a distraction but it won’t be long before he senses something is up. You have to leave now,” Angelica said, looking around as if expecting the Count to materialise in the room any moment.

“But he’ll kill you,” I said.“Don’t worry about me I can take care of myself.”

I really wanted my freedom but at what cost? I knew without a shred of doubt that Dracula would kill Angelica if he ever knew the part she had played in my escape. Angelica must have sensed my hesitation for she put an encouraging arm across my shoulders, pacifying my protests.

“I’ll be fine, I promise.”

“But how do I even leave? I’m sure the place is crawling with guards.”Angelica produced a small sachet with white powder inside.

Erinna raised her eyebrows questioningly.

“Ellington Powder, a family heirloom,” Angelica answered her silent question.

So that was what it looked like? It was so ordinary. Melissa had told her various stories about this precious powder.

“Put it under your tongue and picture your father’s castle,” instructed Angelica.

Erinna did as instructed, remembering her tower as she had last seen it. She was not sure if it would work, if it had not yet reached its expiry date but by that point she was willing to do anything to get away from Dracula.When she opened her eyes, Erinna was back where she had been less than twenty-four hours ago.

The End

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