Roxanne let out a small whimpering sound as she ascended the stairs to the balcony. She thought of Lucian, the horrible feeling within her stomach as he searched her mind, tearing at her memories. She walked along the corridor toward her room, smiling slightly as she heard a loud scratching noise came from her door as she neared it. “Apollo,” she murmured, pushing open the door. The dog tilted its great head and sat, his fluffy tail wagging impatiently, waiting for her to feed him. She rolled her eyes and collapsed onto her bed, the large dog jumping up beside her. She held out her wrist and the dog bit into it without a second thought.

She stroked the dog’s soft, dark brown fur with her free hand and the dog let out a low growl as he took the blood from her wrist greedily. She sighed and pulled away from him. “Apollo, heel.” She commanded, as the dog obediently jumped from the bed, sitting on the floor gazing up at her with his chocolate brown eyes. “Good boy.” She praised as he walked over to his bed in the corner and curled up to sleep. Roxanne leant back, attempting to do the same but found she couldn’t. She just lay staring up at the ceiling.

She lifted up an arm, closing her blinds to stop the sun coming through before running a hand through her hair, pushing it back behind her ears; letting out a long, frustrated sigh. Memories of her pianist, Lucian and Apollo began to swim around in her head. The dog pricked up an ear, hearing Roxanne’s sobs. He sat beside her bed; resting his head beside her he gazed up with sympathetic eyes. She patted the bed beside her, allowing the dog to clamber up beside her. She rested her head in his fur, clutching him to her comfortingly.

“Oh Apollo, what am I going to do?” She muttered. The dog whined in response, rolling onto his back; showing his white belly. Roxanne sighed, lifting her head, shaking it slightly. “I’m not rolling over to him! You know how I feel about Lucian.” Her voice was frustrated but still did not rise above a whisper. Apollo let out a low growl and rolled over again, allowing Roxanne to rest her head on his back. “Oh Apollo...” She mumbled her eyes flickering as sleep began to embrace her, wiping away her thoughts. Apollo rested his head on his paws, his eyes closing as the sun began to ignite the night sky.

She woke to see Lucian sat at her bedside; Apollo was now sleeping on the floor. She blinked as she opened her eyes and he kissed her cheek softly. “Good evening.” He soothed as Roxanne scrambled to push herself up, away from him. “What’s wrong?” He asked, scooting toward her. She shook her head softly and attempted to push him out off his bed. He stuck in place and looked at her, an eyebrow raised. “You going somewhere?” He asked, making Roxanne feel queasy as he read her mind again.

She attempted to channel her thoughts, “Yes. I haven’t had a drink in two nights.” She thought, still failing to push him out of her room.

“Well, let me come with you.” He grinned, frozen to the spot as Roxanne tried to push him away.

She thought about telling him no as she was planning to go back to the bar, but she remembered who she was talking to. She stopped pushing and stood straight.

“Okay.” She sighed reluctantly, making Lucian’s grin wider. “I’ll meet you downstairs.” He grinned, gliding from her room.

Roxanne slammed the door behind him, sliding down the wood of the door collapsing onto the floor. She welcomed Apollo’s embrace, wrapping her arms around the comforting Akita. “Apollo, wanna go for a walk?” She smiled even wider as Apollo barked happily in response. She knew how much Lucian hated the dog, although she didn’t understand why. She stood, straightening herself up, re-aligning her dress before she headed out of her room; Apollo came bounding after her. She descended the stairs, walking straight past the glowing Lucian, whose face fell as soon as he spotted the overjoyed dog trailing after her.

“Roxie...” He glowered as he walked briskly to catch up to her.

Roxanne smiled as she recognised the irritation in his voice and she stroked Apollo’s fur in thanks. “I have to see the pianist. I promised him.” She thought, a frown appearing on her porcelain face as she saw Lucian’s content.

“So, where are we going?” He smiled, wrapping his arm round her waist he pulled her closer to him. She wriggled in his grasp but he just pulled her closer.

“Let go of me,” she commanded, pushing at him. He looked down at her, a scowl appearing on his face. “Please?” She asked, resolving her tone to a soft whisper. He narrowed his eyes slightly but let her go with a low growl.

She thanked him and stood in front of the hotel. “Please wait here, Apollo,” she muttered. The dog seemed to nod in return and sat obediently at the entrance. Lucian paused, grabbing Roxanne’s arm he abruptly turned her round.

“Are you here to drink or visit your human?” He growled, noticing the place from her thoughts. She said nothing, instead tried to shake her arm from his grip. “If we are,” he snarled tightening his grip, “you better not try anything.” He pulled her closer to him and whispered into her ear.

“You are mine.”

He let her hand fall to her side but she raised it again, going to slap him, but he caught her hand and grinned. “I love it when you get angry.”

She placed her free hand on Apollo’s head, signalling him to be still as he rose to his feet, his canine eyes raging as he stared at Lucian. She yanked her arm from his grip and sighed. “No, I’m not.” She whispered her voice hoarse as she entered the building. He patted Apollo’s head and laughed at the dog’s snarl before following her inside and down the stairs. Roxanne sighed in relief as she noticed the bar was half-empty. A slight smile appeared on her face as she noticed the pianist looking at her for a brief moment; but it fell when he frowned, noticing that Lucian soon followed her. She hung her head and ordered her drink from the bar and took her seat. Lucian leant his back on the bar, glancing at the women that were, once again, swooning toward him. “No wonder you came here,” he remarked, “look at all that flesh and food.” He laughed. Roxanne shuddered and began to nurse her drink. “Go,” she murmured, seeing him bite his lip in temptation. He nodded absently and left her, straightening his collar as he began to converse with the woman he had been eyeing from across the room.

She smiled again as she heard the pianist breathe out a sigh of relief, it grew even wider when Lucian began to leave with his, ‘date.’ The night dwindled away as quickly as the rest of them seemed to, but that night was different. Because when the pianist stopped he walked over to her, but she only realised when his sweet voice whispered her name. “Roxanne.”

The End

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