Theia rested on the bed, her neck clear of any blemishes or blood that might have hinted at Nikolai’s...cruelty? Was that what it was?
It bothered the elder Lockhart that Volkov would be that cruel, that senseless.
Had the incubus wanted to anger him? If so, he had. Elijah had reacted without thinking, which seemed to be happening more and more since the ex-hunter’s return. He had thrown the incubus off his sister and into the wall, not even wincing when he heard the glass in the window crack as his head smashed into it. The troublesome blonde had stepped in then, seemingly shocked and infuriated by his presence.
What had they expected? That he would just stand by when Theia’s blood was spilled? He felt his blood boil at the thought.
His blood cooled down drastically when the previous conversation with Nikolai spilled back into his mind.
“Are you pregnant?” He asked the gore covered ex-hunter with a surprisingly calm voice.
His loose dress was splattered with blood as well, but it was cleaner than the incubus himself. Bits of meat clung to his skin, while dried blood darkened his snow white skin. His hair was stuck in clumps together, though his eyes showed his jubilance with what he had done.
It took a moment for his question to sink in and the gleeful expression slid off his face, giving birth to a reserved curiosity. It was as if Elijah’s potential reaction spiked his interest more than anything else. His face tilted to the side as if to examine him for the first time. It was unnerving, no one had ever looked at him like that, and he didn’t appreciate the feeling.
“And if I am?”
Elijah let his face fall blank and he noticed the other’s vestige fall as well, his taking up a cautious mantle and a daring gaze.
He kept his relaxed hold on Nikolai, his fingers feeling the strong pulse that seemed to radiate from the incubus’ skin. His breathing slowed and fresh blood flowed from his nose. He pulled away from the pureblood and touched a finger to his cupid’s bow to confirm for himself the new development.
Elijah watched him silently as he sighed and looked back at him.
“I should go wash up.” he said, slipping away from the pureblood and into the manor.
He had glared at the defensive Clementine while Nikolai had looked on at him while blood streamed down his face. His expression was tired, and it was then that Elijah had taken his leave, cradling Theia’s slack form in his arms as he left.
He hadn’t even looked back at the pained incubus, only caring about Theia’s pain.
That was all he had cared about since she had fallen into his care when their parents had died. They had cared for him as their own, and had not blamed him for the sins of his past life even though he was the reason that they would inevitably die. Their hopes for a better future for their kind as well as Theia had spurred him to help create the dual hunter/vampire school.
Theia had looked at him as if he hung the moon and the white haired teen had despised that. He had hated Elijah from the moment they met, though at the time he had no reason for attacking him other than his hatred for the Rogue that attacked his family.
He wondered if Volkov knew that he had been the one to set the beast upon them.
He hadn’t then, but who was to say that he didn’t now?
Had he been fucking with them for revenge? Had he set out to get back at him?
Elijah knew the hunter heir was vengeful, but he had never thought him to be foolish enough to attack them. Nikolai wouldn’t have changed to spite them, though. His status as a hunter was all that had mattered to him, he had even made it clear to Theia that the next time they met they would not meet as friends.
Elijah had almost laughed at the idea then. Nikolai could never harm her, not intentionally at least.
But he had for some reason.
He thought back to Theia’s reaction to Nikolai’s shift.
She had been shocked and angry, even shocking him when she slapped the incubus. Nikolai had reacted calmly, though his aura had sent out a powerful wave, belying his true reaction.
He had defended his sister then, setting himself between them. Theia had been looking at him from behind his arm, her eyes shocked with herself. He had paid her little mind, more set on analyzing the other’s reaction.
Volkov’s wound had healed almost immediately, even before the blood had trailed down his neck. His eyes ignored Elijah, set on the girl behind him. A cold anger made its way through his face, and he had uttered a sentence that had angered the elder Lockhart.
“Please don’t be that stupid again, Theia. I assure you that it would be a mistake on your part if it were to happen again.”
“Is that a threat, Volkov?”
He had turned his back on them, sending them sharp words as he left the room.
“Just fair warning.”
Perhaps Theia had angered him like that again, but she certainly didn’t deserve to go through such cruelty in response. Just thinking of how weak Nikolai had left her made his anger spark again.
But if Volkov was pregnant, he had just put his health in jeopardy. Elijah sighed and leant back in the chair beside Theia’s bed, his mask slipping for a moment before he heard her begin to stir.
Theia blinked her eyes slowly for a moment before sitting up, startled when she noticed his presence. A happy smile came over her face when she met his eyes and he returned it, Volkov slipping from his mind briefly.
“How are you feeling, Theia?” he asked.
“Fine,” she clipped leaning against the headboard.
They talked for an hour about how she felt, what she remembered, and about whatever she wanted to. It was only when he asked her why she had gone to Nikolai that a blank expression came over her features.
It was alien to him, to see such a familiar emotion on one as warm as Theia, and his brow lifted at the sight, breaking her silence.
She laughed softly, “It was nothing. I yelled at him when he didn’t deserve it, that’s all.”
“Theia,” Elijah interceded.
She shook her head, a light smile still on her features. “That’s all, big brother.That’s all.”
He left her a few minutes after that, going across the hall into his study where he sat for a moment till Sparrow stepped into the room. He looked up at the noble.
“My Lord.” she greeted and he nodded in response, waving her on to begin.
“I followed the blond pureblood to Fitzgerald and Onoe’s room where he quickly pulled out the young girl. He said something along the lines of his lover being ill and needing the girl to call her mother.” Sparrow told him.
“The blond took her back to their room and locked the door, though I could smell something burning for a couple of minutes till the smell abandoned the room. I left shortly thereafter.” she completed and he nodded, dismissing her.
He sighed softly to himself. Theia had pushed away his worries, but he wasn’t so inclined to believe her this time.
Alec dressed himself and Nik’s daughter as they awaited the arrival of Isabelle, the one who had turned his lover and who held the best chance at helping him.
He was quiet today, as was Holly who looked at her father with concern from the opposite end of the mattress.
Blood had stained the pillowcase and the bed sheets from Nik’s head wound, which seemed to reopen every time he shifted in his sleep. His breathing had calmed as had his movements, he seemed to be falling deeper into sleep by the hour and Alec knew that wasn’t a good thing.
The air trembled for a moment and Holly was the first person to notice the note on the dresser. She hopped off the bed, her dress shorter than the first time he had seen her wear it.
He followed her over to the dresser, taking the proffered note from her hands. She watched him read the note, her hope shining in her cherry blossom colored eyes.
I will be with you within the next two nights. To aid you quicker, Magdalena will arrive within the night you receive this. I love you darling, and we will solve this conundrum.
With Love, Belle
Alec took in the words, handing the girl the paper after a moment.
“Stay here, Holly. I will notify Hugo of the guest we are expecting.” he told her and she nodded, looking back at her father with a frown on her pretty countenance. He pat her on the head gently, pushing the long brown hair out of her eyes with a small smile.
He left her to make his way to his descendant's room, knocking when he had arrived.
Hugo answered the door quickly, his clothes slightly flustered and his cheeks reddened. He heard the shower turn on then, and a brief flash as a shadow made its way into the bathroom.
Hugo cast him a bright smile, “Lord Alec, how can I help you?”
Alec drew in a breath, “I wanted to let you know that a woman will be arriving tonight, her name is Magdalena.”
He waved off the honorific almost as an afterthought, “I don’t hold any actual title, so no need for the ‘Lord Alec’ shit.”
Alec continued, “Nikolai’s sire will be arriving as well, except not tonight. Can you show Magdalena to our room when she gets here?”
Hugo nodded, “Is everything alright?”
Alec shook his head, “That’s why Magdalena is coming.”
Hugo looked concerned, “Is Nikolai alright?”
“No.” he said, sighing before leaving his descendant alone.
A woman made her way up the steps of the manor, her heeled boots clicking against the stones while her bag swayed softly in her hold. She wore a soft ivory colored dress that hugged her body and a velvet baby blue cloak that touched the top of her heels. The hood was up around her face, shielding her skin from the winter cold, but her copper colored curls peeked out from beneath the hood, giving her an air of warmth even in the strongest freeze.
She knocked on the large doors to the manor, her hand squeezing the handle to the carpet bag.
A tan brown haired vampire answered the door, his green eyes welcoming her, “You must be Magdalena, I am Hugo Clement.”
She pulled down her hood to reveal royal features and a pair of honied eyes. She gave him a soft smile.
“My sister sent me to help her sired childe. Can you direct me to him?” she asked and he nodded.
“This way,” he directed, escorting her up the stairs and down a hallway to a door where he knocked.
A young girl answered the door.
“Aunt Maggie!” she cried, running to the woman as the door fell open to reveal the rest of the room to the two of them.
Hugo’s eyes quickly spotted the prone figure of Volkov laying on the bed, his back facing them. The long white hair was tinted pink at his scalp, and it looked as if it had been washed, but not brushed out.
Alec walked to them from his position by Nikolai’s bedside.
He nodded toward the two, directing his gaze at Hugo.
“Thank you, Hugo.” he recognized and the noble took that as his leave.
“Let me know if I can be of any help.” he stated, his crimson eyes concerned.
Such a kind soul. I hope that it lasts.
Alec nodded once more, inviting Maggie into the room before shutting the door.
The witch approached the bed, placing her bag on the bedside table. She carefully flipped the incubus onto his back, sighing when blood from his head wound began to flow. His skin was pale and slightly gaunt, as well as clammy to the touch. She placed two fingers to his throat, checking his pulse, before placing the fingers on his pregnant belly.
“He hasn’t been healing?” she inquired and Alec shook his head.
“No. He hasn’t.”
She sighed once more. “How long has he been asleep?”
“About fifteen hours, but he won’t wake up.” Alec told her.
Holly sat at the foot of the bed, watching the scene intently. Her legs slung back and forth slightly but never hit the mattress. A look of concern painted her face, but she said nothing, opting to let her aunt work.
Maggie didn’t like to be interrupted.
She placed a hand on top of Nikolai’s stomach, tracing it over the skin till she stilled for a moment. She pulled out a vial from her bag then, popping the cork and spilling a little onto the sleeping incubus.
She drew a small symbol over the skin on his abdomen, a hazy look coming over her eyes before she nodded to herself and looked at Alec.
“Are you the father?” she asked and he shook his head.
She looked back at Nikolai, holding her hand against his forehead. It was hot.
Wet tears slid down his face, but he did not wake, seemingly oblivious to his own pain. She captured a tear with the tip of her finger, tapping it against her tongue and nodding.
“How unfortunate.” she said softly.
“What’s going on?” The blonde pureblood asked and she turned to face him.
“Succubae as well as their counterparts rely on the other parent of their children to sustain them for the duration of their pregnancies.” she told him, “Who is the father?”
Anger sparked in Alec’s eyes.
“Lockhart.” he bit out.
A brow rose on Maggie’s face before she turned to look at the silverette. “Zero… always so masochistic.”
Alec followed her gaze, “How do you know Zero?”
Maggie turned back to him.
“My sister told me of why he came to her originally.” she told him.
Alec looked like he wanted to ask, but he remained silent. She nodded as if to herself.
“Isabelle will be able to help him when she arrives. Sire blood is powerful and will sustain him, but he might not wake up for a while. I suspect he’s working through the rest of his transition as well. I will stay to monitor him.” Her words were precise and clean, she saw no reason to sugarcoat them.
Holly looked at her father with a frown. Alec didn’t like the negative expression on such a positive girl.
She looked to him, “Everything will turn out for the best. Daddy will get better.”
She sounded so sure. He envied that confidence.
Maggie was escorted to a bedroom across the hall by the red eyed noble, but was quickly pulled back out by a grey haired noble soon after. She locked her bag but left it in the room, sure that no one would be able to reach within.
She followed the silent noble to an office. A tall russet haired vampire sat in the leather chair behind the desk, he didn’t look up when they stepped into the room, but acknowledged his follower.
“Sparrow.” he greeted, dropping the pen in his hand.
She nodded and left the room, leaving Maggie alone with the pureblood. He glanced at her, directing her to the chair in front of his desk. She followed along with the direction seeing no reason not to.
Her cloak swayed as she sat, reminding her of it’s continued use. She’d have to take it off when she got back to her room.
“You are here to see to Nikolai.” he stated. She nodded.
Her head tilted to the side, “He is one of my sister’s sired children. She asked me to see to his health.”
Maggie’s eyebrow rose, “He is indeed, ill.”
“Who are you?” the male asked and she sighed.
“My name is Magdalena Fitzroy, I am one of Isabelle’s sisters.” she replied, quickly growing tired of the questions.
“I take it you are Elijah Lockhart?” she asked and he nodded, giving no other reaction.
She didn’t like blank expressions. She savored reading people and learning who they were just with a few looks. It made things interesting when they said something she didn’t expect.
“What is his condition?” he asked, his wine colored eyes searching her for any imperfections.
“Have you not seen him? He has failed to wake and has taken sick. The only thing that is healthy about him is the pregnancy.” She stated, her tiredness apparent in her tone.
She did not look well on those that would abandon their lovers. And if she was right, those that would harm them.
Maggie stood, anxious to leave. “Excuse me, I need to rest before I see to him again.”
Elijah nodded, but he clearly wanted to ask more of her.
Too bad. She left the room quickly, shutting the door softly before returning to her room.
Elijah sat in his chair, his face calm, but his aura not. The glass cracked in the window behind him, his power discrediting his facade.
He had attacked Nikolai for fear of Theia, but had inadvertently truly hurt him. His actions were thoughtless and he cursed the incubus silently, his mind had slowly begun to fray since his arrival.
Memories constantly flooded his mind since the first night he shared with the incubus, whether they be from thousands of years ago, or the previous evening. Guilt had begun to cling to his previously irreproachable slate. He had taken up regret as well, it appeared.
He let out a long breath.
Alec wouldn’t allow him near Nikolai, not after the previous night. The blond had been shocked at his actions toward the white haired incubus, though he shouldn’t have been. Elijah had announced his engagement to Theia within the same period, and beside that, she was his sister, he would do anything for her.
Even hurt someone he had shortly before that cornered to ask of the pregnancy.
He would have Sparrow keep her watch on them, it was his current means of checking on the silverette, and he knew he would have to leave them be till the next shoe dropped.
Perhaps Nikolai’s sire would be interested in telling him what he needed to know.
Isabelle and her immortal lovers had arrived the next night, seemingly having arrived without a ride.
Isabelle was a tall blonde, her golden hair pin straight and long. Her skin was a honied tan, giving her a sporty look accompanied with long limber limbs. Her eyes were as odd as Nikolai’s with a rainbow opalescence that made her seem somewhat otherworldly in nature. Her white babydoll dress was cut with lace detailing to remind her of her original time period of when she was turned.
Mina appeared next, the only female lover that Isabelle kept with her at all times. Her black hair was pulled up into french bun, but a few stray hairs slipped out around her face, making her pale green eyes look kinder for some reason. She was a petite girl, but gave off an aura of cunning cleverness. Her lips were painted red, more of a stain than actual makeup. Sure enough, she did smell like cherries as Holly had forewarned them.
She wore a bright blue dress polka dotted with black spots, while her shoes were like ruby slippers. On her wrist was a charm bracelet with only a charm of a cherry on its chain.
Jean came up behind them, his bright happy eyes looking slightly worried, but happy all the same, as if he had the highest hopes for his friend’s recovery. His eyes were the color of the pacific ocean and his auburn hair was curled into a low ponytail. He wore a flowy shirt that looked as if it had been used on a pirate ship at one point, only clean. His pants were leather and hugged his legs, tucking into a pair a rust colored riding boots. He looked like every french vampire cliche ever.
All together, the group predated the existence of this realm, with Isabelle having picked them each off of different places and times.
Isabelle had been turned sometime in early March of 1973 in a small town in upstate New York. She had been sixteen then and had been experimenting with the drug called ecstasy when she came across the succubus queen, who turned her in the following weeks.
She had been traveling from plane to plane to realm to realm to universe to universe when she came across Jean. He had been upper middle class heading for death in the reign of terror that followed the revolution in France, and he had been surprised when Isabelle had offered him a chance at life.
He had accepted.
She had been traveling then with a vampire who wanted to get on her better side and quickly and without question turned the young man. In the decade that followed, the vampire had been killed off by one of Isabelle’s bloodthirsty lovers, who later died that day as well.
Jean had stayed with her, and he became valued by her as not just a lover but a friend, solidifying his spot by her side until he died.
Isabelle had found Mina in San Francisco in 1959. She had been attacked by a drunken man and left for dead in the middle of a park under a dark moon. When she had awoken hours later, she found herself not dead, but healing. Her wounds had stitched themselves together and she had quickly stumbled back home to try and forget the night.
She had met Isabelle the next day and Isabelle had taken her in after two years had passed and she had not aged after that night. They had consulted one of Isabelle’s sisters, who had quickly deemed Mina a new immortal, but not quite as immortal as one of the Family.
They had accepted this and moved on, traveling as a foreign court of sorts to new and old times, and to new and old places.
Mina and Jean had come to enjoy the experiences, both of them knowing that they were two of the few that Isabelle would ever keep with her at all times.
They were shocked when Nikolai had left them, claiming that he wanted to rehash something from his past. It had never occurred to them that he could want to, not believing him due to the condition of his transition.
It bothered all of them that he had left for such a reason. He had wanted to escape his mortal life, hadn’t he?
Jean had frowned when he caught sight of the comatose incubus, his eyes losing their brilliant happiness. Isabelle had frowned at the sight, her eyes annoyed and her countenance stiff. Mina rubbed soothing circles on the back of her hand, leaning her head on the blonde succubus’ shoulder.
Isabelle turned to face her sister, “Who did this?”
Maggie sighed, pinching the bridge of her nose, “Partly Nikolai, partly the father.”
Isabelle looked back at the ill incubus. Her eyes roamed his form, seeming to take in the pregnancy for herself. Jean perked up slightly at the idea, then deflating when he looked back at his friend.
“Who the fuck is he?” she asked, surprisingly calm for such angry words.
Maggie smirked, “Lockhart.”
Isabelle glared at Nikolai’s sleeping form, “How fucking stupid are you? You went back to the people that screwed you over in the first place!”
She sat down on the bed, Holly crawling over to place her head in her mother’s lap. Isabelle ran a hand through her daughter’s brown hair, calming herself.
Isabelle took several deep breaths, her eyes closing before she regained her composure. She breathed out, “What does he need?”
Maggie nodded, “Blood from you if he cannot gain sustenance from the father.”
Isabelle nodded, rolling up her sleeve and biting into the delicate flesh at her wrist, cradling Nikolai’s head in her opposite hand and shoving her bloody limb into his mouth. The blood flowed consistently for him, forcing him to swallow several times till he began to heal. His head wound healed over for good this time and his skin began to take on its normal hue and though he was still slightly paler, he looked good as new.
His distended abdomen was larger now, but only so much as to round him out. His belly would be noticeable now, though if what Maggie had told them was correct, the father already knew.
Nikolai… How could you be this stupid? They hadn’t wanted you, so why do you continue to pine over them? Especially the male! He did nothing but hurt you! The girl, maybe she was better, but him? Him? He was what you wanted? Gods!
Isabelle let out a breath and clutched her daughter tightly in her arms. Holly was strong and let her mother hold her, her mind focused on her ill father, but still filled with hope for better. Nikolai, still on the bed, rolled onto his side, his form still retaining the effeminate features, though that did not surprise anyone there.
Alec was used to it apparently, while the others knew it was a side effect of the pregnancy. The blond pureblood let out a long breath, trying to clear his mind of any anxiety. Isabelle looked at the male; he was familiar, an old lover, perhaps?
Nonetheless, he appeared to truly care for Nikolai.
“Do you care for Nikolai?” she asked him, already knowing the answer.
He glanced at her with strawberry red eyes, “...Yes.”
Holly popped up from her lap to whisper in her mother’s ear. She spoke in a different tongue, unknown to all but her mother and aunt.
“I want him to be who Daddy loves! He is so much better and he won’t hurt Daddy!” the little girl cried softly, turning her pale pink gaze onto her aunt.
Maggie replied in the same tongue, “If Nikolai’s heart turns toward him, the children could adapt to see him as their true father.”
Isabelle nodded and turned her stare on the unsettled pureblood.
“Perhaps that would be for the better,” She stated in plain for everyone else.
She turned to Maggie, her voice calm and friendly in her native tongue, “Cast the Cadrianar Charm. I would like to see if it could be arranged.”
Maggie looked curious, but followed her order. She withdrew a bottle from her pocket, plucking a strand of Nikolai’s hair and dropping it into the bottle, before plucking a strand from Alec’s scalp before the pureblood realized what she was doing. She dropped it into the bottle as well. She directed them all to leave the room, and Alec took Holly to Fitzgerald without question, a little uneasy, but confident the witch would not harm him or Nikolai.
Isabelle remained in the room beside her sister while Jean and Mina wandered away from the room and down the stairs toward the living room.
Maggie plucked a needle from a sewing kit and ran it along the distended stomach of Nikolai’s, drawing his blood till it healed shut with the aid of Isabelle’s will.
Maggie dropped the needle into the tiny bottle, shaking it until the blood painted the inside of the bottle.
Nikolai turned back over in his sleep to his sire, who pushed his long hair out of his face. He leaned into her touch, blinking as he began to come to.
Maggie pushed the bottle into his open palm, wrapping his hand around the corked glass.
“Maggie?” He asked, his voice hazy and weak.
“Break it!” She bid him, and Nikolai followed her instruction as Isabelle nodded.
The glass shattered in his palm, cutting into his flesh and he felt a haze come over his mind once more, sending him spiralling back under.
Alec, collapsed against the hallway wall, his eyes blinking before he fell to the floor, his strawberry orbs unseeing. His pulse had quieted substantially and his skin had paled. Jean and Mina found him, Jean carrying him back to the room he shared with Zero.
“Wh?” he mumbled absently, becoming weaker and weaker as the Charm began to take hold. It was only as he was laid beside Nikolai’s unconscious form that he too fell asleep.
“Rest,” Maggie bid, and he was helpless to do otherwise.ns 22.214.171.124da2