A growl erupted from Jace's throat, slicing through the silent air. He slapped Elijah's hand away from mine, pushing in front of me in a protective way.
"Jace?" The queen's golden eyes were widened with surprise, and her questioning tone demanded an answer for his sudden behavior.
"Why is he her fiance?" His voice was filled with acid.
I bit my lip nervously. What was going on? Did Jace and Elijah know each other? The queen pursed her lips in a frustrated way, straightening her golden dress as she stared straight ahead. Suddenly her voice entered my mind, and I knew the two vampires were using telepathy.
'Prince ELijah is one of the most respected among the vampire royals. If Skye marries him, her safety will be ensued, since his kingdom has an incredibly huge army. If my kingdom and the kingdom of Adiriana join forces, then it will only be a matter of time before we do not even have to fear the council anymore. This is for Skye, Jace. This is for her safety.'
Jace scowled. 'Elijah is not to be trusted! He doesn't even care for Skye! It's obvious that he won't protect her! What if he simply wants to hand her over to the council?' Jace retorted, his voice rising in my head.
I bit my lip, feeling even more confused. Elijah narrowed his luminous green eyes, slowly assessing the silent air. I couldn't help but wonder if he knew if they were using telepathy or not.
'Prince Elijah is the one who proposed to marry Skye, and I will trust him. I don't know what it is between you and him, but such small matters are not important right now. This is about Skye's safety, I hope you understand.' Her voice was icy in the end, announcing that the telepathy conversation was ended.
I widened my eyes. Why on earth would Elijah suddenly come out of nowhere and propose to marry me? And yet the queen seemed to trust him so much - something definitely wasn't right, I could just feel it deep down inside of me. The queen turned towards Elijah in an apologetic manner.
"Now, please excuse Jace's behavior. Why don't we all go to the dining table? We'll discuss the situation more thoroughly," she murmured, gesturing us all towards the golden dining table.
I followed the others to the table absently, still deep in my own troubled thoughts. I had to tell them that I wasn't ready to marry anyone yet, and that I was declining the proposal before the situation deepened. There was no way that I would marry someone like Elijah. No, scratch that. There was no way that I was going to marry anyone yet, not when I was only seventeen. I sat down next to Jace, while Elijah and the queen sat opposite for us. Funny, really. It was as if we were split in two parts. The queen and Elijah being on the proposing side while me and Jace were against it. The queen's eyes flickered towards my face, studying me.
"This must be quite a surprise for you, Skye," she started calmly.
I bit my lip, forcing myself to stay quiet just a little longer. The queen snapped her fingers, suddenly lighting up all the candles on the table, all of them flickering with wild flames. Our meals appeared before us, and not-so-surprisingly, I was the only one with a mundane meal - spaghetti. The others had been served with bowls filled with suspiciously red liquid. I shuddered, I didn't even want to guess what the soup really was.
"You see, Prince Elijah is a highly-respected vampire royal. He was also the one who proposed to you. You must understand that this is an honor. Most vampire royalty do not even get this opportunity."
Her voice sounded extremely cheerful yet strained at the same time. I couldn't stand it. It was almost as if she were bragging about him. I sighed. It's not like I didn't hear that she had agreed to this for my safety, but that didn't mean I wouldn't be angry. She should've at least talked to me about it. Frustration surged through me as I realized that the queen always decided everything for me. From the corner of my right eye, I could see Jace's fists tightening, as if he was trying to control his anger. I couldn't help but frown. Why did Jace hate Elijah this much? And why was the queen always supporting Elijah? I poked my fork into my spaghetti, twirling it around. I simply couldn't take it anymore. I was going to give them a piece of my mind. I dropped the fork with a loud clang, not caring how rude that seemed.
"Look, I understand that this is an honor and everything," I mumbled, struggling to sound polite. "But I don't wish to marry anyone yet."
The queen let out a nervous laugh, one that sounded quite strange coming out of her mouth. She didn't sound like the type that was confident at all. What was going on?
"Skye, you have no idea what you're saying," she said quickly, a clipped smile on her face.
"I know exactly what I'm saying," I retorted, my voice rising despite how much I tried to stay calm.
She turned towards Elijah apologetically. His sharp green eyes were narrowed in an annoyed way.
"I am truly sorry for my daughter's behavior. She's just a bit confused, that's all. Would you please excuse us for a moment?"
"Of course," he replied flatly, sounding dead calm.
The queen got up, shooting me a look at the same time that told me to follow her. When we finally got out of the room, she led us deeper down into the hallway. When we finally came to a stop, the look on her face almost made me feel bad. Her golden eyes were filled with regret and frustration. It was just like as if the person in the dining room was completely different from the one that was standing with me right now. I threw an accusing look at her.
"Why are you trying to make me marry Elijah?" I demanded.
She let out a deep sigh. "I wasn't planning on telling you this, but now I see I have to tell you in order for you to understand. I haven't explained everything about the curse. The spell that I had put on you was very difficult, it was a miracle, really, but it had its limits too. The cure wasn't just to have any vampire bite your neck, but it had to be a vampire royal."
I felt my eyes widen. "Then why Elijah? Besides, if we really need a vampire royal to bite me, why do I need that vampire royal to marry me?"
The queen let out another sigh. "When vampire drinks blood from humans, nothing happens afterwards. The humans continue on just as always, and it's as if nothing had happened."
I frowned. "I know that."
"But if a vampire bites a vampire, it's a whole different matter."
"A whole different matter? What do you mean?" I asked anxiously, my mind bubbling.
"If a vampire bites another vampire, it leaves an imprint on both of them. It creates a bond between the two vampires."
I raised my eyebrows. "A bond? As in..." My voice trailed off.
"Soulmates," the queen replied. "If a vampire imprints on another vampire, they will be bonded for eternity. This is why the person who bites you must also be the one that you marry."
The words went into my mind slowly, and it took me quite a while to process everything. I pressed my lips together, my throat feeling uncomfortably dry. I didn't know what to say. This was great, just great. If I didn't let a vampire royal bite me by next week, then I would die. Yet if I let Elijah cure me, I would be bonded with him forever, which I definitely didn't want. The queen searched my eyes.
"I am really sorry, dear," her voice was soft and soothing. "But you must marry him if you want to survive. There are no other vampire royals that I trust, they're all in the hands of the council apart from his kingdom."
I bit my lip. Thoughts were flying everywhere in my mind, weighing me down. Despite how much I hated Elijah, it seemed that I really didn't have a choice but to marry him, if I wanted to be cured and live on. I let out a defeated sigh.
"Fine," I forced out bitterly, knowing that I was going to regret it in the future.
When we returned to the dining room, I was almost shocked to find Jace's hand grabbing the hem of Elijah's shirt, glaring at him in a threatening way.The two vampires growled at each other, and just as the doors closed behind us, both of them whipped their heads towards us. The queen narrowed her eyes and irritation flashing in the golden pupils. The two vampires jumped apart from each other, and although they were apart, there was still the uncomfortable tension that hung in the air.
"I have some things that I would like to discuss with you in private, Prince Elijah," she announced and turned towards Jace and me. "You two are dismissed."
The second we entered the hallway, both of us kept walking in silence. I glanced up at him anxiously.
"Jace?" My voice was quite.
A hard expression was in his light blue eyes, and his lips were pressed in a straight, frustrated line. His eyes flickered to mine as we walked across the dark hallway.
His fists were still clenched, and I could tell that he was still very angry.
"Do you and Elijah know each other?" I asked.
Hatred filled into his eyes.
"No." His voice was curt and harsh.
I frowned, a twinge of hurt appearing deep inside of me. Why was he lying to me?
"That’s not true," I insisted, "You do know him."
When he didn’t reply, I pressed on.
"Why won’t you tell me anything? Did something happen between you two in the past?"
Before I even knew it, Jace was standing right in front of me, gazing down at me in an expressionless way. I held my breath, my heartbeat quickening.
"Just drop it." His voice was dangerously low.
"Just drop it?" I echoed, feeling irritated.
His light blue eyes darkened a bit. "It’s none of your business."
I widened my eyes, surprised at the harshness in his voice. Feeling hurt, I looked away.
"Fine. Don’t tell me anything," I snapped, stepping to the side so that I could walk away from him.
Could my day get any worse? First a surprise fiancé. Then the shocking fact that if I didn’t marry this fiancé, I’d die by the end of next week, and now this. His hand suddenly shot out, grabbing my arm in a firm yet gentle way just as I was about to walk away. I froze, stopped in time.
"Wait," he murmured quietly.
I stared straight ahead, not turning around to face him. My skin heated up at his touch, and a fluttery feeling spread throughout my stomach.
"I’m sorry," he continued softly, "I didn’t mean to take out my anger on you."
I sighed. If only he would tell me what the bad history between him and Elijah was. I turned around a slightly bit, realizing all over again that he was still holding onto my arm.
"Are you going to go along with the marriage?"
I looked down bitterly at the ground.
"Yes," I murmured quietly.
His eyes widened with shock.
"You shouldn’t marry Elijah," he said through gritted teeth.
I gaped at him, surprised.
"Weren’t you the one who insisted that I had to marry this fiance?"
"That was before I knew who it was."
I stared at his hand on my arm and then looked away again.
"I don’t really have much of a choice, I kinda have to marry him," I said bitterly.
If I wasn’t imagining it, it almost seemed like we were standing a slightly bit closer to each other than we were before.
"Was it something that the queen said?" His voice was flat.
I nodded, letting out a sigh. "Yeah, something about the fact that only a vampire royal can cure me."
His eyes suddenly widened and he had let go of my hand.
"A vampire royal?" He echoed.
I gave him an odd look. "Yeah."
Something flickered in his eyes, and it made my heart stop. It was like a sparkle of light, as if an idea had just clicked in his mind. I narrowed my eyes at him.
"Why are you giving me that look?" I raised my eyebrows at him.
He took one step closer to me.
"My full name is Jace Adirian."
Something about his full name clicked in his mind, especially the family name. Adirian. Where had I heard it before? That’s when the thought struck me. Oh. My. God.
"Elijah’s your brother?!" I shrieked.
Jace nodded, although he did not seem to be particularly happy about it. I widened my eyes even further.
"That means you’re a vampire royal as well!"
Hey everyone! I’m so... so sorry for this late post! Anyhow, I hope the ending of the chapter makes up for it haha. I hope all of you liked it and please comment! Thanks! Lily Ann King.
Maggie K: Thanks for you comment! I really love long comments haha. I get what you mean, school was torture for me this week as well, we had like an essay due in almost every single subject.. Anyway, thanks! Yeah, well I tried to describe Elijah the best I could, and I tried to make him different from Jace. And yep, I’m fourteen. Anyway, tell me what you thought about this chapter and I hope you liked it! Lily.
Myrrh: Aww, thank you! I’m glad you liked it!
Xia: Thanks, Xia! Yep, that’s exactly the way I wanted Elijah to seem, and yeah, Skye really has no idea what is going on haha. Anyhow, I hope you liked this chapter and tell me what you thought! Lily.
Linda: Haha, yeah I’m 14, and thank you!
Carly Jones: Haha, yeah I expected most people to think of Elijah as a sort of creepy guy. Anyhow, I hope you liked this chapter and please comment! Thanks! Lily.
Vonivoel: Oh well, you’ll find out who Skye ends up with soon, probably in the next few chapters!
James H: You're right about that and you’ll find out who Skye ends up with soon enough!