His heartbeat was soft and yet steady, the sound of it comforting her, as it always did. She hovered above him, her side on the bed next to his, his eyes closed as he was deep in sleep. She reached over and brushed her long white fingers along his sternum, his body bare and coverless for the world to see, but he belonged only to her. She leaned over and placed a soft, wet kiss on his chest, her chestnut locks spanning out over his exposed torso and stomach. He moaned softly in his sleep and a smile touched her deep crimson mouth, her eyes seeing him perfectly in the darkness of night. He would be waking soon and would be hungry. She kissed him again and lay on his chest, listening to the sound of his heart.
He was the only one that loved her now. The only one that would protect her and yet she separated him from his pack by her mere existence. She wanted to feel sadness or regret, but with the passing of her life, her emotions froze into place, allowing little to bother her and giving her only him for resounding warmth. The last twenty years had been harder than any time before in her life, dying and rising, losing Mace and gaining Kane and yet the memories of her death – of his death – haunted her each waking moment.
The fight at the mansion that night so long ago had been fragmented, her memory so faint from blood loss and yet she could still see Kane and Mace fighting against Vlad to keep her safe. The two men that loved her and yet hated one another to the point of death, fought together to save her, but it wasn’t enough. Vlad had won out in the end, taking her from the house and carrying her limp body deep in the woods. He saved her life and yet took it all in the same moment, turning her into the monster she’d hunted yet days before.
Four days later when Mace finally tracked her down, she hid her new fate from him as best she could, his attention on Vlad as they fought to the death. Mace arrived in horrible shape, his body beaten and torn from the earlier fight and yet having traveled for days looking for her. She wanted to cry at the sight of him rescuing her again, but her heart was black – dead and gone. She snuck from the sight of the battle and felt the loss of Vlad, knowing that Mace would die there as well. Her thoughts of going back to change him consumed her, but daylight was approaching and the time to make a decision was over. He would die and it would be all for nothing…
“You deserve nothing, especially not life nor love…” Elsie whispered into the dark, kissed Kane’s strong chest one more time and moved from the bed, grabbing a soft cotton shirt and breeches. She dressed quickly, pulled her hair up into a high ponytail and left the house. She needed to feed soon just in case one of Kane’s brothers decided tonight was the night for yet another fight. “Absolutely nothing…”