Princess In The Dark

Lucia is The Princess In The Dark, a highly ranked member of a large coven of vampires. Hiding in the gloom of the tunnels under London, her only pleasure is to hunt.
She lives this life every day, and does not feel even the slightest portion of remorse or guilt for all the lives she has taken. Lucia also happens to be the only daughter of their leader, The Count, putting her in a position with many enemies and lurking dangers, leaving more responsibility on her shoulders than she would have otherwise wished for.
She then meets 18-year-old James, and begins to notice that he is different, strange... And that he is changing her in the most peculiar way...

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7. Prisoner

"A 38 year-old woman was found dead in an alleyway behind a café in East London earlier this morning. The body was discovered by the owner, Bill Fisher, (45) when he went out with the rubbish. She was lying in one of the wheelie bins. Mr. Fisher, please tell us, what did you do when you found her?" "Well, at first I just shook 'er, but she didn't say nothin'. Then i realized she was dead, 'cos she was all stiff and cold and pale-like. So i called the police, right, and they said they'd be straight over. They came after a few minutes, and they tol' me the girl was dead, right, so I told 'em 'bout the 'oles in 'er neck-"  "Excuse me Mr. Fisher, these are ongoing inquries, and the police has no more to say regarding this matter." "Thank you, Mr. Fisher, thank you, Constable. Police are still investigating the case, and as of yet -"

James turned off the television and slammed himself into a chair. The police had come to him this morning - he'd been asked to identify her. He knew as soon as he saw her that she was gone - she had been, truth be told, his only friend. He placed his face in his hands and wept.

 

"Fear is an understatement,

She was blessed with death's sweet kiss,

Forever gone to this world and the living,

There are no words for this"

 

Lucia bit down on her lower lip forcefully, causing herself pain so as to distract her attention from the rising sun. This was the longest period of daytime conciousness she had ever endured, and she wasn't going to give up just yet. The scorching flames of heat caused her body to shake and spasm, making it more difficult to lead her mind along more pleasant paths. That her teeth were attached to her lower lip also helped her refrain from screaming, simply suffocating her outbreaks of agony as they tried to fly up her throat. Every single joint and limb of her body burned in the fire of daylight although she remained unexposed to the world above. She did not wish to even imagine the strength of the fire if she were to seek higher ground. She pressed her lids tightly together, trying to visualize herself somewhere else. Somewhere cold. Outside in the cool of autumn, the icy winds wipping through her hair. This thought led her mind elsewhere... The memory in her head was clear as anything, walking along beside James just a few hours ago. She ran through it in her head. The café, the streets, the woods... The walk through the woods had been rather quiet. At least on her part. Her muteness had made James feel awkward, his cheeks had been blushing red the whole time. He had tried to fill out the silence with words, chatting on and on about nothing in particular, simply trying to keep the flow of words from his mouth steady. It amused her how uncomfortable and out of place he acted in her presence. And yet he followed her around like a dog, it seemed. Strange. Her thoughts were led to the conversation that took place before they had entered the woods... He had revealed to her the fact that she had murdered his mother without knowing so himself. That was when she noticed the change. The fire had weakened, the burning not as vigorous and painful as before. She was going to get through this, she realized. She was going to endure the pain, because the pain was now endurable. She would be vulnerable no longer.

The Count smashed his fist into his stone table. A little too hard, it seemed, for the weak piece of rock cracked under his strength and split in two. No matter, it was replaceable. What wasn't replaceable was the respect of his daughter. She had not showed up at the last meeting, and had embarrassed him in front of the entire High Council. Yes, they were weak servants of his, useless against him on their own. Together, they were strong. He needed them to respect him, to fear him, if they were to obey his command, to follow his lead. His daughter had to fear him, too. He had the perfect punishment planned for her, something to make sure she would listen eagerly in future. He arose from his chair and began pacing slowly towards the door. He would need some strong vampires to capture her... She was a stubborn fighter. He walked out to the long hallway and halted. "Cerberus! Moros!" he called. Their chambers were not far away, they would hear him. They were, no doubt, the best fighters this coven had seen for a long time. They killed for pleasure, tortured for joy. Their impressive skills and complete lack of mercy would, no doubt, ensure that the operation turned out successful.

Lucia shot out of her coffin as soon as the sun had set. She had kept herself awake and conscious. It pleased her that she had been strong enough, and yet she feared the pains of the coming day. It was the most difficult thing she had ever done, completed entirely with determination. All on her own she had performed this admirable feat. She must get used to the thought of enduring it, day after day. If she did not, this would be a new, unexpected weakness. She must not be weak. She must have discipline, get used to the burn of day. If she had done it once, she could do it again...

She walked through the hall, turned left, and entered the room leading to the outside. It was square, very small, and only had a single wooden door. Right beside it was a ladder leading up to a manhole-cover, the only way to access the outside. She closed the door noiselessly behind her, and turned to face the slimy steel ladder. As soon as she'd gotten a grip on the rail she heard a loud click behind her. She jumped from it instantly and grabbed the door handle. Locked. Someone was after her, she felt the chill of it run down her spine. She exposed her fangs, making sure they were at their full length as she took a small step back and glared upwards, towards the exit. There would be someone waiting up there, she was sure, although she knew not who or when they would choose to emerge. Alertness was vital. She kept her gaze completely locked on the spot. Although she thought herself to be ready, the speed of the attacker still caught her off guard. The drop from the hole had been performed with incredible speed, meaning that she barely had the time to blink before Moros was standing in front of her. She hissed and ripped up his left arm with a swift, serpent-like motion of her hand. He caught her by the wrist before she could pull back, not even flinching, though his wounded arm was already gushing blood, clearly painful. As soon as he had gotten hold of her, Cerberus dropped from the hole. There was hardly room enough for the three of them, which only made it easier for the two hunters. They worked together, and they worked fast. In an instant, Cerberus had gripped the arm that was not already held in the hand of Moros. Lucia struggled furiously, but to no avail. Their strength was simply too great, it was impossible for her to break free. She spat in Moros' face, narrowing her eyes at him. "My father is going to kill you. Both of you." She looked at Moros, his red eyes were completely empty of all emotion. They turned her towards the door, and Cerberus pulled out a long silver key from the pocket of his trousers, inserting it in the lock and turning it. He pulled it out, and the door was opened from the other side. There, smiling grimly, stood The Count.

She was being pulled down an unfamiliar passage by Cerberus and Moros. At the end of it was a large iron door. Her father walked beside them. She let her feet drag against the floor and kept silent. Her father had done this. She could not fight him, he was the leader. He was The Count. She was pushed, speechless, into the dark room.

She was strapped against the wall with heavy, thick chains. Chains of pure silver, that instantly burned deeply into her skin. The Count showed obvious pleasure as she ground her teeth together from the sudden pain. Moros and Cerberus worked on getting her arms and legs strapped in, she could see that they struggled, they too felt pain at the touch of silver. "You will learn to respect me after your time here. I have found that you lack loyalty towards me, is it not true that you declined when ordered to go to the council meeting, something that was not your decision at all?" The Count was pacing back and forth, watching her as he spoke. "Yes, Count" she managed to mumble through her clenched teeth. Moros and Cerberus moved away as soon as they had finished, leaving the room without a word. The Count nodded at her and turned away, walking out as well. He stopped in the doorway and turned to her. "Do not worry, my child. It will become worse when the two visit you tomorrow. They will bring toys, just for you." He left and locked the door after him. First then did she allow herself to open her mouth wide and scream.

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