No Use Crying Over Spilt Blood

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Portal Keepers Book 2 (The sequel to 'Would You Like Brains With That?').
Danira travels back to the Realm of the Undead to stop humans being used as blood-slaves.

Cover by Zillah Designs.

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39. Desire and Violence

 

      While Ridge organised some food for me I had a bath. The bathroom looked like it had all been carved from marble and the bath was more like a spa that had to be nearly as big as a swimming pool. Closing my eyes, I leaned back my lips drawn into a smile. Things were finally going right; I had the Infinity Blade and Ridge was back. I hadn’t felt so happy in a long time.

      “You’re turning into a prune.”

      I opened my eyes to find that the bubbles, which had been around my neck, had lowered considerably, and that Ridge was sat on the marble floor beside my head. I must have nodded off. Turning around I rested my arms on the edge of the bath. With a smile I asked. “Would you care to join me?”

      A flash of desire emerged in Ridge’s dark eyes but he shook his head, saying. “I don’t have that much control, Danira. I would hurt you.”

      I tried not to let my disappointment show as I replied. “Ridge, you have never hurt me.”

      “There’s a first time for everything.” he told me with a sigh, his fingers brushing my cheekbone.

      “Do you still love Aurelia?” I asked suddenly, looking down at the marble. “I wouldn’t blame you if you do... she’s beautiful.” I traced the cool stone with a finger as I awaited his reply.

      Ridge sounded angry. “How many times do I have to tell you? I love you. You’re the most important thing in the world to me. What do I have to do to show you that?” he tilted my chin so that I was looking at him. “I do not love Aurelia. I haven’t for a long time. It’s you that I love Danira. You’re the most beautiful thing I’ve ever set my eyes on,”

      I dipped my head in embarrassment and blinked away tears of joy.

      Leaning down Ridge pressed his lips to mine, making my heart skip a beat. “Come on, there’s food waiting for you.”

      Ridge left the room and I got out of the bath. After drying myself I dressed in the clean clothes I had brought in with me. The blood-slaves that I passed on my way to the dining room all peered at me curiously, their eyes on my collar free neck. Ridge was waiting in the dining room and he pulled a chair out for me. Our hands brushed as I sat down and I had to resist the urge to wrap my arms around him and never let go. The dining room was long and modern with only a table, chairs and some French doors in it. A blood-slave served my dinner before disappearing. Reaching across the table, I grabbed Ridge’s cold hand and stroked it with my thumb. Ridge’s legs brushed mine under the table and he sipped from a glass of blood, his dark eyes dancing.

      The meal was the most delicious food I had eaten in all my time in the Realm of the Undead.

      After a while Ridge said. “I should free all my blood-slaves.”

      “I can take them to the portal if you want?”

      With a small laugh he replied. “Ah, yes, I forgot that you are masquerading as a caped crusader now.”

      “I don’t have a costume.” I told him, rolling my eyes.

      Ridge sighed. “That’s a shame. I can just imagine you in spandex.”

      The look in his eyes made me blush and he chuckled.

      “Do you want me to take them to the portal or not?” I asked kicking him under the table.

 

      Not long after that Ridge and I escorted all his ex-blood-slaves to the portal. There were thirty vampires guarding it but, with Ridge’s help and the Infinity Blade, it didn’t take long for us to take care of them all. Once the last human had disappeared through the portal we returned to Ridge’s estate. The moment we stepped through the door Ridge’s lips were on mine. He lifted me up and I wrapped my legs around him. Ridge carried me to his bedroom, his mouth not leaving my mine and we lay down on the bed. My heart was threatening to burst though my ribcage as our tongues brushed. Kicking my shoes off, I rested a hand on Ridge’s sculpted chest as his cool hand slid under my top.

      “You’ve lost weight but you’re stronger. You’ve changed.” he murmured as his lips left mine to make the skin on my neck feel like it was ablaze. Ridge gave a small groan when his lips came to rest on my frenzied pulse.

      “Drink if you’re hungry.”

      “No,” he pulled away, his voice husky. “I can’t... that’s what Christian would do.”

      I placed a hand on his cheek and gazed into Ridge’s feral eyes. “You are not him.”

      Ridge slid off the bed and poured himself a glass of blood. He drank it with his back to me and I stared at the ceiling.

      “You should probably get some sleep.” Ridge said after a while, glancing over his shoulder at me.

      Standing up I rummaged around in my bag for my pyjamas. I held them up and winced. They were so childish. I suppressed a sigh and changed into them. When I was back in the bed, Ridge came over and kissed my forehead.

      “You’re staying with me, aren’t you?” I asked when Ridge remained where he was.

      In the blink of an eye he was beside me and he pulled me into his arms, pressing his lips to my head. “I’m so sorry for everything that you went through, Danira.” Ridge told me, holding me close.

      My head was resting against Ridge’s chest as I replied. “I’m sorry for what you went through too. We will find Lady Prenalla and she will pay for what she did.” I played with the buttons on Ridge’s shirt saying. “You know earlier you said that I’m the most beautiful thing that you’ve ever seen?” I blushed at the memory.

      Ridge chuckled. “Yes?”

      Chewing my lip I shifted so that I was looking into his eyes. “Why did you used to tease me then? And compel me?”

      “The first time I saw you,” Ridge reminisced, brushing loose strands of hair from my face. “I didn’t pay any attention to you, mind you, you were very young then. But the more I went to the café, the more you grew up, and the more I saw you, the more I started thinking about you. I couldn’t believe that I had feelings for a human, so I teased you and compelled you, telling myself that it was because I enjoyed tormenting you that I liked you so much.” brushing my bottom lip with his cool thumb, Ridge added. “I couldn’t believe it when I found out you felt the same way.”

      I laughed. “I used to dread your visits because you were so mean to me, but then everything changed when we went on our adventure.”

      “I’m sorry for how I treated you, Danira.”

      Biting Ridge’s lip playfully, I replied. “Yeah well you’re stuck with me now so I think we’re even.”

      

      I had feared upon awaking that Ridge’s return had merely been a dream. But it hadn’t.

      Seeing that I was awake Ridge nuzzled my neck, his lips brushing my skin. I smiled pulling him closer and our lips met.

      “Wait.” I pulled away. “I’ve got morning breath. Do you have any toothpaste?”

      Ridge rolled his eyes and gave me directions to the bathroom that the blood-slaves had used. While there I went to the toilet, brushed my teeth and smartened myself up.

      “Right,” I said climbing onto the bed. “Where were we?”

      Ridge brushed the hair from my face and pressed his perfect lips to mine. Ridge’s kiss was so full of love that I swooned. It was a good thing I was laying down. Our tongues brushed as Ridge moved his cold hand up my thigh. My blood was rushing through my veins as my fingers started unbuttoning his shirt. His chest was smooth and cool to the touch. Ridge rolled us over so that he was on top. Our hips were pressed together and Ridge’s fingertips skimmed my waistband. He must have drank blood recently because he usually drew away by this point.

      “I want to.” I whispered when Ridge moved his hand away.

      His dark eyes were smouldering with desire. “Are you sure?”

      I nodded not trusting myself to speak.

      Ridge suddenly looked uncertain. “I might hurt you.”

      My reply was to kiss his jaw. “You won’t.”

      The door burst open making us jump, and for a second I thought that it might be my dad with his shotgun, but then I remembered where I was.

      “Christian, darling, there you are.” Aurelia’s voice was melodic. But her expression darkened when she recognised me. “What are you doing?”

      Ridge quickly sent me a look that said ‘play along’. He stood up turning to face Aurelia, wiping his mouth on the back of his hand, pretending that he had just drunk my blood.

      I didn’t know what his plan was so I just sat up, put a hand on my neck and pretended to look ashamed.

      “I was just having a snack.” Ridge told her, licking his lips.

      “Of course,” Aurelia smiled, brushing some strands of hair from her face. With a sneer at me she ordered. “Leave us.”

      I shuffled towards the door keeping my eyes on the floor.

      “Wait a minute,” she said, a frown creeping into her voice. “She isn’t wearing a collar.”

      I reacted immediately by jumping on Aurelia. It was only her surprise at my strength and speed that allowed me to pin her to the floor. I pushed her face down and pulled her arms behind her, holding her to the floor by putting my knee on the small of her back. Aurelia snarled and thrashed in my grasp.

      “Ridge,” I cried demanding his attention.

      He had been stood staring at me with shock. “Why did you do that?” he asked helping me to hold Aurelia down.

      As soon as Ridge’s strength joined with mine, Aurelia gave up struggling and growled a long list of profanities at me.

      I shrugged in reply to Ridge’s question. “She’s had it coming since the moment she said your name in the café. Anyway, she sired Xavier.” I had included that in my explanation of things that Ridge had missed, so it wasn’t news to him. Fixing my attention on the blonde vampire beneath me, I hissed. “Didn’t you?”

      Her angry reply was muffled. “I don’t know what you’re talking about. What are you? How can you be this strong?”

      Something snapped within me. It happened when Aurelia asked what I was. My answer was to grab a fistful of her flawless blonde hair and yank it backwards, making her scream in pain. A glance at Ridge showed that he was staring at me, wondering whether to be impressed or afraid. “I’m sure you remember him, Aurelia, or do you offer your blood to dying people everyday?” I practically growled.

      “You little bitch! You just wait until I...”

      The rest of her words were lost when I smashed Aurelia’s face onto the wooden floor. She howled in pain and I grinned when I realised that I had broken her nose, and damaged the floor.

      “Do you remember him or not? He’s blonde with blue-silver eyes.”

      Aurelia started laughing. It was a manic kind that was creepy and made my skin crawl. “Oh him,” was all she said, but it was the way that Aurelia said it that told me she was hiding something.

      Ridge and I exchanged a look.

      “What do you mean by that?” I replied, knowing that I probably wasn’t going to like the answer.

      She snarled. “I’m not telling you anything! Nothing you can do will make me say anything more.”

      Getting up I searched around my bag for something. I withdrew Mireille’s emerald and held in front of Aurelia’s eyes.  

      “Xavier said that you were wearing this. What do you know about it?”    

      But Aurelia was true to her word and didn’t say anything else.

      “She won’t tell you anything, Danira.” Ridge sighed. “Aurelia can be as stubborn as a mule when she wants to be.”

      I groaned in frustration and considered kicking Aurelia. When did I get so violent?

      “Maybe the Infinity Blade would make her talk?” I suggested, imagining all the many forms of torture that would be possible.

      “That won’t be necessary.”

      Ridge and I turned in surprise to find Jet stood by the door.

      Elaborating on his previous words, Jet said. “I will get her to talk for you. Then there’s something I need to tell you after, Danira.” his tone suggested that I wasn’t going to like whatever it was. Jet gazed at Aurelia. “Stay still.” he ordered, his voice laced with power. He was trying to compel her.

      But Aurelia snarled and continued to writhe around in my grasp. She couldn’t be compelled.

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