✍️✍️✍️✍️ The Crown's Obsession Chapter 421 - 430 ✍️✍️✍️✍️


Three Counts- Part 3

"Cal." He heard Madeline call him, and he made his way to where she was, "Before you arrived, I saw the creature in here. Salvate Mortem."

Calhoun's eyes narrowed, "Did it try to talk to you?" and he saw her shake her head. 

"No. It didn't speak to me, it stepped out of the room," Madeline had a frown on her face. She had been worried when she had seen it in here, a visitor whom she hadn't expected to see nor was she interested in meeting. When the creature had stepped out of the room, she had felt relieved at the thought that it had left the castle, not realizing it could have gone to Beth's room. 

Suddenly turning alert, Madeline quickly crawled out of bed, and said, "What if it went to Beth's room?" 

Calhoun's eyes narrowed, and he asked, "Who is there with her?" 

"Raphael. He said he would be looking after her." 

Both of them left their room, making their way towards the quarters where Beth was in. Calhoun had reached the door before her, and when the door did open, Madeline's eyes frantically looked at the bed to find Beth sleeping, while Raphael, who was sitting on the chair that was next to the bed, looking up at the couple who stood at the door. 

"Did you leave the room, Raphael?" questioned Calhoun and Raphael didn't know if he was supposed to leave the room. Something looked amiss as the lady's eyes had turned wide as if she had come running here. 

"No?" came the careful answer from Raphael.

"Mr. Sparrow, did you see anyone in here?" Madeline demanded the answer from him, and the man shook his head. 

"Not that I remember," he picked up the book to show them what he had been up to, "Is everything alright?" With Calhoun in here with Madeline, Raphael believed it was something serious. 

Madeline's eyebrows had knitted together, keenly observing the quiet room, staring at Beth's bed. Calhoun's lips that were set in a thin line, said, "It's the Salvete Mortem. Madeline saw one of them enter the room and leave." 

"Greetings from the death?" Raphael had heard about it, but he had never seen one. Considering how Madeline was a dark angel, he didn't appear to be too surprised by hearing that she could see it. "Their presence never brings good news. If I may ask, have you seen them before?" The question was directed to Madeline. 

"Today. It was next to her bed," whispered Madeline and a subtle frown appeared on the card reader's face. "But I think the one I saw minutes ago, was a different one. It had an axe in its hand." 

Calhoun looked at Raphael while thinking. He asked, "Do you know what it means?" 

Madeline walked near Beth, checking her temperature to see if her sister had caught a fever or if her leg had started to bleed again. The last time, when James had touched her in the dungeon, his body temperature was hotter than the average temperature of a person. She had read some books and had come to find that werewolves did have a higher body temperature compared to the other people who walked in this realm. 

Raphael answered Calhoun's question, "There are different representations when it comes to death. The first one with nothing in its hand. It is nothing less to a greeting for a possible death that might arrive at the person's door. The second Salvete Mortem with an axe means it's preparing for a kill."

"Someone's going to die?" asked Madeline. There was already enough blood and death, she thought to herself, she didn't want more. 

Calhoun asked, "Does the death take place the very time when it appears? How do we get to know when a person is going to die?"

"That is a little hard to say," Raphael pursed his lips. "In this world, most of the things runs on three counts. First, is the greeter of death. Then is the guard who makes a place where the person is going to die, and then is the third Salvete Mortem comes with blood in its hands. It takes away the soul with it."

Madeline wondered, if the creature had entered the room, Raphael possibly couldn't see it like the maids, who had seen nothing but walls and other furniture when she had asked them if they could see where she had pointed. 

"It's not possible to know when those creatures arrive and leave, but if they are here, it means people need to be alert," stated Raphael, and Madeline bit her lip. Beth looked fine, but if the Salavete Mortem was here for her sister, that would mean two of the warnings had been received, and if the third one arrived, it would take Beth's soul from this world. 

"Beth will die," whispered Madeline, goosebumps forming on her skin at the realization. "How many times have people in the past been able to deflect them away?" 

"The information about Salavete Mortem is close to non-existence because it is a creature not everyone sees," said Raphael.

While they were speaking, Beth groaned, and Madeline's attention fell back on her sister, "Beth?" 

"Ugh, my….leg...it hurts...feels heavy," came the words from Beth who was opening her eyes. 

Noticing how Beth was regaining conscious, Calhoun ordered the servant who had been positioned outside the room, "Get Lady Elizabeth's food in here."

"Yes, milord!" 

Wide awake, Beth pulled out the blanket that hid her leg. She started to remember the werewolf biting her leg before she was able to escape out of the carriage. Just thinking about it and feeling the pain strike her leg, tears formed in her eyes. 

"I am going to turn to a werewolf! AHHH!" Beth cried. 

"It's going to be okay, Beth," consoled Madeline, taking a seat on the bed. 

Calhoun turned his back and pinched the bridge of his nose. If Beth wasn't Madeline's sister, he would have killed her by now for more than one reason. But at the same time, the girl looked like she was changing her behaviour for the better. Unless she brought harm to Madeline, he would ignore the girl for her past deeds. He knew Madeline's heart would break if something were to happen to her sister Elizabeth. 

"Did Lady Monique receive any information from her men?" asked Raphael, and Calhoun sighed. And here was another reason to keep the girl alive. 

"Yes. Monique said her men have found the cave and will find out if the antidote exists. They will send the antidote through the bird. It will be the fastest." Calhoun had spoken to Monique right after supper about her receiving any news from her men as she had sent a letter through her loyal bird to her men who stayed close to where the mountain of Belmount was situated so that they could verify about the antidote's existence. In the past, many had gone in the hunt for the antidote, but none of them ever returned the same. 

Calhoun had himself thought to fly there, but he didn't want to leave Madeline unattended here as it would take time for him to reach back to her. To Calhoun, first came Madeline, and then came the rest. 

Both Calhoun and Raphael moved to the side, and the card reader said, "If the antidote really exists, we need to give it to her before the end of tomorrow's night as it will be a full moon's night." 
Snow cold night- Part 1

Music Reccomendation: Bring Me Ice Cream by Tim Wynn


A person who wore a black coat walked on the road with his hands in his coat pockets while snow fell from the sky. The sky was dark, and the area he was walking in had little to no light. His features were defined with a sharp nose and sharp jaw with thick eyebrows below which held the deep red eyes that appeared to be intelligent. His straight black hair had been combed back, leaving a single lock of hair that was stubborn enough to come to fall on his forehead. 

Vladimir's footsteps were firm on the ground, and a few steps behind him, his loyal servant, Odin, followed him. The vampire servant's body moved like a pendulum in motion as he swayed left and right. 

Odin had no idea why his Master was walking here when his Master could make use of the time to rest in the coffin, but somewhere he was also glad that his Master didn't go to sleep, who knew when he would wake up again. The night was cold, and the snow continued to fall from the sky. 

"Master?" Odin called Vladimir, but the vampire didn't respond to his call. 

Vladimir had never thought that there would come a time where he would blame himself for the loss of his daughter. If he hadn't gone to sleep, his daughter Constance would still be alive. He was the head of the Hell, who had not visited the place for a long time, and his underlings were the ones who were looking after it. But not everything was under control, and things were being misused in his absence. 

Unable to stay in the cave for long, Vladimir had come out for a walk. Instead of flying, he had chosen to walk on the roads, where he would get his possible meal from a passing carriage. "Which is the closest village from here?" he asked his servant.

"Master, it is Morriest, but I believe there are a lot of vampires living there than the humans," answered Odin. His feet tried to keep its pace with his master's feet so that he wouldn't end up losing the sight of his master. 

"Who cares if there are vampires in there. You forget, Odin, my meals come in all forms. Humans, vampires, they are all on the list," Vladimir was still walking when his nose picked up the smell of blood that was fresh as well as strong. "Looks like people were slaughtered." His footsteps stopped, and he looked in the direction from where the smell was drifting and in an instant, Vladimir transformed himself to a bat, and he flew in the direction of where he smelt the blood, disappearing into the darkness. 

"Master!" Odin shouted, and he turned to a bat, searching for his Master. He finally found his Master standing in the midst of a possible sacrifice. His eyebrows raised and he looked at the demons whose necks were either slit or completely torn out from their bodies. "It looks like it was only a few minutes ago since the massacre took place."

"Seventeen minutes and seconds counting," replied Vladimir by giving the precise time since the bloodshed took place in here. His eyes lazily swept across the dead bodies, "These are demons of a higher level than the average. What's going on in Hell, Odin? Why are there so many of them outside? I thought we spoke about the stop on the transformation of the demons to vampires, or are they old demons," Vladimir was not impressed with the bloodshed of the demons, "And who dares to kill these many demons?" 

When he stepped further, observing the bodies, his eyes fell on the petals that belonged to a red rose. His eyes narrowed, and he bent down, something he often didn't do and Odin looked surprised. 

"My daughter is dead, and I have seen her body in the coffin, resting peacefully, yet why does it feel like she is still around?" Vladimir's voice was empty, with little to no emotion in it. He picked up the petals of the rose in his hand that was on the ground, running it between his fingers. "They are almost the same. The same texture."

Vladimir's memory went back to the past before he had gone to take his nap. It was a few years back before Constance had turned curious about life outside.

'Why can't I go out?' he heard her voice from one of the many memories he held with him, 'Odin and the others step outside this place, but I am not allowed.'

'The world outside is not safe, Constance,' said Vladimir to his daughter, who looked not more than fifteen. 'The world outside is filled with the filthy people and their greed. It is worse than Hell.'

'Hell?' came her innocent voice to ring in his ears and in the back of Vladimir's mind as he continued to stare at the petals. 'You think Hell is better?'

'It is safer for you,' came the stern voice from Vladimir. 'One day, when the time is right, we can visit the people who reside on the other side of the forest. Odin said you picked up a new trick. What is it?'

Hearing this, his daughter's face brightened, forgetting about their earlier discussion. She pulled out a knife from her dress. She raised her hand and went to stab his hand with the knife, and Vladimir didn't blink his eyes, nor did he make an effort to pull away his hand. Just as the knife went to prick him, it turned to petals of red roses, and the young girl laughed. 

'Did you see that?'

She had looked up at him with so much of excitement. It was probably the first and one of the very few things she had acquired from him, while she had received the rest from her deceased mother. Constance didn't have any ability until then, and when she had shown him the trick, he had been proud of her. 

He knew the shape of the petals and the peculiar scent that it left behind. His teeth gritted in anger, "It looks like someone is mimicking what Constance used to do. How dare he kill her," came the cold rage-filled voice from Vladimir, "My daughter, she was like her mother, and she had never hurt a single soul."

More anger filled in his mind because if his daughter was dead, that would mean her soul had probably gone to heaven. Vladimir wished Constance had made one grave misdeed. Just one and it would have possibly been enough to send her soul to Hell where he would be able to pick her up and place her back in here. But his daughter was not brought up the way he was. 

"What is the status of the girl and the King, Odin?" demanded Vladimir.

"They are still in the castle, Master. I don't think they are going to leave the castle anytime soon. I know where her parents are. Would you like to bring them to you?" 

"I doubt the King would understand the importance of the girl's parents death. Don't forget, Odin, tomorrow night when we take the girl from there, then starts the torture."

"Yes, Master!" 
Snow cold night- Part 2

Odin was a loyal servant of Vladimir, and after falling from Heaven, his Master had turned him to a vampire, to live on these lands, which gave an upper hand than the rest of the creatures. And as loyal as the servant was, one of the bad habits of Odin was not waiting to hear the full story and getting only half the information. 

Vladimir heard a groan coming from one of the demons, and he made his way to where the body laid and the demoness who was hanging to her life in this realm, tried to move when the older vampire came to stand right in front of her. 

Bending down again, Vladimir held the demoness' face who spewed blood from her mouth.

"Who did this to you?" he questioned in a calm voice, but the demoness didn't appear to be in the mood to speak as she wanted to save her life. When she didn't answer, Vladimir's hands pressed the jaws of the woman, and when she went to question, his eyes turned pitch black. "Now answer me unless you want to spend your time bathing in the hot melted iron, so that your skin feels good."

The demoness had believed she had lost her life earlier, and she was glad to be back, but not anymore, after seeing the pitch black eyes of the man who ruled Hell. He had gone missing for years and now he was back. 

"Master, please forgive me!" cried the demoness. "The person who did this to us, he's the King of Devon. Calhoun Hawthrone. I think he has been sent by the angels to kill the demons," she answered. 

Vladimir was displeased by this information, and even though the demoness had answered, he picked a hint of a lie in her words. His fingers pressed on her jaws to hear the demoness cry in pain, and the next second, he broke her face and sent her soul back to where it belonged. 

"Odin, go to Hell and tell people I have returned and will be there soon," Vladimir's eyes sharply looked at his servant, who bowed his head and within a second, Odin zapped out of the place. The older vampire wondered why the angels were trying to get to the demons. 

He couldn't help but question if this King was the one who had copied his daughter's trick, the skill of turning to petals. After all, she did spend a lot of time with this King before the fucker had thrown her out of the castle. Vladimir would break every single bone of this person for dishonouring his daughter before he would feed the person to the hellhounds. 

Vladimir continued to look at the demons, some of them whom he noticed to be of a higher level who were never there when he had last checked with the demons' status. 

Suddenly from a distance, he heard a carriage's sound coming from the direction of the road he and his servant were previously heading to. Vladimir had little to no interest with the demon's blood, and he was interested in having some fresh blood that was coming in the carriage. When the carriage stopped, a man stepped down from the carriage, and Vladimir's eyes held disappointment. Another damn demon, he thought to himself. But then his eyes fell on the coachman, who was a human. 

He left the dead bodies' side and made his way to the coachman who was standing near the horses, while the demon who got down from the carriage quickly hurried towards the bodies that were lying on the snow. 

Vladimir slowly sneaked behind the coachman, and before the human knew, a person was waiting to suck him dry, Vladimir put his hand on the human's mouth covering it to stop the coachman from screaming as his ears were sensitive. The vampire was about to take a bite into the human's neck when someone said, 

"Stop, right there!"

It was a woman's voice, and Vladimir's gaze moved to look at a woman with blonde hair and a monocle on one of her eyes. "What do you think you are doing there?" Her red eyes were fierce, and they stared at Vladimir. 

"Me? I was going to take my breakfast before you rudely decided to interrupt me," replied Vladimir. The human's eyes looked petrified in shock, and he tried not to move from his place, while looking at Helena for her help to save him. 

"Let the man go right this instant. If you need food, there are inns not too far away from here that offer blood to drink," Helena's eyes looked at the vampire whom she had never seen around before. He appeared to be in his thirties, his eyes looking back at her mockingly. "It doesn't look like you are poor, and don't have a coin to spare for a drink. But if you still insist that you don't have it, then take this." She threw a gold coin at him, but Vladimir made no attempt to catch it. 

"I doubt the inns have fresh blood like this that you speak of. Warm and smooth in texture. Especially filled with fear that runs through the veins, hmm," Vladimir hummed in appreciation, "Don't tell me you don't know how it tastes, girl."

Helena's eyes flared, but she didn't lose her overall composure. Seeing the vampire's unwillingness to let go of her coachman, she pulled out the gun which she always carried with her to point at the predator. Vladimir found it to be funny, and he started to chuckle as if Helena was stupid. 

"Let us see how good your aim is. If you shoot me successfuly, I will let this man live and if you fail," he paused to look at the human in his hand, "Then I will drink him dry. What do you say?" he proposed the option.

"Keep your games to yourself," said Helena.

Dimitri who had gone to have look at the dead bodies and the burnt carriage that he found not too far away from the scene, yelled, "Weasley is dead, and there are some other demons dead bodies lying in here!" 

"Oh, are those your people?" inquired Vladimir.

Helena stared at the vampire, wondering if he was the one to kill Weasley and the others. For a vampire, he was showing too much arrogance and courage, "Did you kill them?" she asked.

Vladimir, instead of answering her question, questioned back, "Why are you wearing just one monocle? Why not two of them? But then it covers your pretty face." Helena only continued to glare at him, ignoring the flattery. "Don't you want him alive? My reflexes are excellent."

Helena didn't believe the vampire. He was bluffing. He appeared to look like he came from a renowned family, but if he did, why did she not see him before? Not wanting to waste any time, the vampiress pulled the trigger aiming at Vladimir who was taller than her coachman. But the bullet instead of hitting the vampire, it hit her coachman who cried in pain. 

"AHH!" the coachman cried, falling on his knees in pain. Helena didn't stop shooting, and she continued to press her finger on the trigger for the gunshots to echo one after another until she had no more bullets to shoot. The vampire had escaped. Her eyes moved left and right, searching for him, but he was gone. 

Helena gritted her teeth and went to aid the human whose arm was shot. There was something very eerie about the vampire who had disappeared from here. 

After the first gunshot, Dimitri had quickly made his way to come and stand next to Helena, "Who was it?!" 

"Some deranged vampire," answered Helena, "What's the status out there?"

"Bodies and limbs are torn, they are all demons. Someone must have come and slaughtered them. The blood is fresh and not from the morning. If it took place post morning, we would have received information from the villagers or passerbys," informed Dimitri. The man had a frown on his face, and he said, "Also, I think Weasley was alive for some time before we arrived. Do you think someone held him captive in here?"

"Doesn't seem to answer why there are demons dead here unless they killed him first before deciding to kill each other." Helena stood up, looking in the direction where she had shot the vampire, who was lurking near the scene. Lilith and Weasley were dead. And so far there was no news from Reginald. She couldn't help but grit her teeth. It was too many death's in one day. 

She said, "Something is going on. And I can feel the wind carrying the ill omen with it, like a warning. About a sacrifice."
Snow cold night- Part 3

Away from the place where the two High House members were, in a house of the village, a man stood at the window with his arms crossed against his chest whilst another man in black robes at the table, stood there reading the parchments from the light of the candle which was on the table. The man murmured something under his breath as if he was trying to decipher something from the parchments. 

"How much more time do you need, Fraunces?" asked the man, who stood at the window. 

Apart from these two people, there were six more people in the room who had almost camouflaged themselves to the background, standing near the wall and waiting for the soothsayer to give them more information about what was going to be feasible for them. 

"Just a little more time," replied the soothsayer, grabbing the four bones of an animal from the table that were of the size of a matchstick. He shuffled the bones in his hand before throwing it on the table. 

"What does it say?" asked Walter, coming forward and looking at the design that the bones were showing. 

"Tomorrow is the perfect day. You will be successful when it comes to getting hold of the girl, but make sure that you don't sacrifice her until the clock strikes three at midnight. That is the time when the moon will turn completely gold, recieving powers from heaven to shine brightly. It will be the perfect time to sacrifice the girl," stated the soothsayer.

"And what if we miss the time?" asked another man who was in the room, a demon.

"We won't," said the man named Greyson, "The time like tomorrow's night doesn't come often, and if we are going to make use of the dark angel, we better make use of her fully."

"They killed my sister!" said Luther, where his voice could barely contain the anger in it, "Calhoun killed her!"

"And you will get your revenge tomorrow," Greyson responded to Luther, "But I need you to keep a straight head tomorrow. We have lost Lilith, Declan and the others yesterday, something I didn't expect. They would have still been alive if one of you didn't try to get the dark angel who was in the village. If I am not wrong, the actions have only made the people alert, which is why all of us need to tread carefully tomorrow."

"What is the plan?" asked Samuel.

"Distract the King and the others, and get the girl alone before bringing her to our hideout. Make sure you don't do anything to her because we need her alive." Greyson stressed on the word alive because a dead angel was of no use. Walter chuckled, hearing this, and Greyson raised his eyebrows, "Something you find to be funny, Walter?"

"I think what you need to say is for everyone to be careful. She's not a dark angel just for namesake. It would be better to have her unconscious before she is being brought here. When she was a child, she was able to kill demons," said Walter. 

Greyson's eyes lazily looked at Walter, "You have already enlightened us about it. We will be gathering here again tomorrow, before seven in the night so that we can proceed together. If you find more demons who are willing to participate in this, they are more than welcome. What we are interested in is, in creating as much distraction as possible. This will make the chances of us getting hold of the dark angel quickly. You can not leave now." 

"I guess I will be staying in here, considering how the High House members decided to have my face drawn and put it everywhere," said Walter, pulling out the chair and sitting down. Some of the demons had left, including the soothsayer, and Samuel, who stood there couldn't help but be eager for tomorrow to arrive. He had scores to settle, and he would do it right. 

Back in the Hawthrone's castle, Madeline saw Beth go back to sleep after eating and crying some more. Now standing outside Beth's room with Calhoun, she said, "If only I knew how to summon Paschar. I would have asked him how to escape from the eyes and hold of the Salavete Mortem." 

"We still aren't sure if it came for you or Beth," replied Calhoun. It was because Madeline had seen the creature appear in their room earlier. "It might have come for anyone."

Madeline nodded her head. With the creature of death that had come to visit the castle, she had forgotten something Monique had said to her. "There's something I need to tell you. About the chain that was given to your mother. Monique said it was Rosamund who gave it to her."

Calhoun's eyes narrowed at Madeline's words. He knew Rosamund and his dear grandmother didn't like his mother, but he would have never guessed that they would go as far as to plan her death so that she would never appear at the castle. The cursed chain often took short time for the person to fall sick and die, but his mother's body had tried to fight it, keeping her alive before her body slowly started to succumb.

His mother had treasured it as a valuable gift, not knowing the gift held the illest intention from the giver. And all these years, Rosamund dared to step in the castle while speaking about his mother like she was of no good. 

"Cal," whispered Madeline, and Calhoun noticed her looking at something behind him. Her lips moved, but no word came out from it. Turning around to see what she saw, he caught sight of the Salavette Mortem which walked towards him, keeping three steps distance from him before it stopped. 

The creature held nothing in its hands, and it stared at Calhoun, who stared right back at it. 

Madeline hoped it would walk past them, but instead, the creature raised its hand towards Calhoun and then dropped its hand back to its side. In a blink of an eye, the Salavette Mortem disappeared.
Deed of the sister- Part 1

Music Recommendation: Time Bubble by Tim Wynn


Madeline stared at the space where the creature had been standing in front of them a second ago. Both her mouth and throat had gone dry, and she doubted she had really seen it pointing its finger at Calhoun, whether she had really seen it. 

"W-what does that mean?" her voice trembled. 

Calhoun, who stood in front of her, didn't react. His face was blank. His expression unchanging on his face continued to prevail until he finally said, "It's nothing."

Madeline shook her head in disagreement, "You heard what Raphael told about the three Salavette Mortem's. The greeter, the place maker, and then the soul taker." She took a step back, and her lips continued to tremble in uneasiness. Was Calhoun really going to die? The fear had always plagued in the back of her mind, and now as they both got the confirmation, she doubted there was a need to question it anymore. Would she be the one to kill him?

"It's only the greeter, Madeline," Calhoun assured her. Turning around completely to face her, he said, "It was just the first one."

"Which means it has begun. The greeter of death has arrived," Madeline looked at Calhoun with her eyebrows furrowed, staring at him anxiously. "I might be the reason for your death." 

"And I told you I was going to be okay, if it is you who is going to kill me," Calhoun was not unknowledgeable to not know that Madeline understood things perfectly well. The worry she had in her mind had increased, and he didn't want that for her. If death was coming for him, there was no stopping it because everything followed one after another until the very end. 

"But I am not okay with it," she shook her head. If she was going to be the reason for his death, Madeline doubted she would ever be able to forgive herself for it. Though she was learning to control her abilities, what if she couldn't do it all the time? What if something like what she did to Nicola happened again? 

Calhoun took a step forward towards her, closing the distance between them and he placed both his hands on her cheeks. "I know what you are thinking, but you need to believe that you won't do that to me. I have faith in you. I doubt you will ever do anything wrong."

Madeline closed her eyes. Trying to contain her overwhelming emotions after the creature's visit to Calhoun. The reason why she was partly worried was not just about her going dark angelic on him, but because she remembered when she had lost control by harming the head maid for her sins. And when it came to Calhoun... Madeline opened her eyes to look back into his red eyes. He had committed too many sins, and she wondered if the other part of her would look over his actions because of the love she had for him. 

"Okay," she whispered. She would try her best not to hurt Calhoun. "If something does happen, I will ask Pashcar for his help." Calhoun tilted his head with a questionable look in his eyes, "To bring you back to the living."

Calhoun's eyes softened, and a faint smile appeared on his lips. "Only you would think something like that. Bringing the dead back alive is not easy, dear, but let's keep that for another time because we are still alive and breathing, standing next to each other." He leaned forward while bringing her closer so that he could press his lips gently on her forehead. "Everything will be fine. You will see." 

Madeline hoped it would be fine. 

Having stayed up for most part of the night, Madeline sat next to Calhoun on a bench, outside Beth's room while keeping an eye at the corridor before her eyes slowly started to drift to sleep. Her head rested on Calhoun's shoulder, and her lips were slightly parted, where air passed in and out softly through it. 

Raphael stepped out of Beth's room, leaving it open and he noticed Calhoun who was with Madeline. "You should go take her back to your room," suggested the card reader as the Queen had fallen fast asleep. 

Calhoun moved his head to his left to see Madeline, and he replied, "I doubt she would be able to fall asleep as peacefully in there as here, waiting in front of her sister's room. She's too kind."

"She is," agreed Raphael, their words were low enough to not wake up the sleeping dark angel. "Elizabeth is lucky to have her as her elder sister. Not everyone is as forgiving as much as she does. I found out about a few things that she did to Lady Madeline, and they aren't pleasant."

Calhoun raised his eyebrow at this, waiting for Raphael to explain and the card reader continued, "I went through her past memories and found out some disturbing things. I was curious why Elizabeth felt guilty towards Lady Madeline when you didn't even take in the poison. So I took a peek." 

What Raphael did was rude, looking at a person's memories without the person's permission, but Raphael was neither a human or an angel. He was a pure demon, who often went looking through other's memories to know more about them, and to exploit it when the time came. 

"Tell me more about it," came Calhoun's curious voice as to know what Raphael had found out. 

"You promise not to hurt the girl?" Raphael wasn't in love with Elizabeth, but she was mixed with good and evil, and he had grown a soft spot for her in his dead heart. 

Raphael's words only made Calhoun's eyes narrow in wonderment as to what worse Beth could have done to his woman. "I will try not to." He would not keep promises that he didn't intend to keep, and his actions would depend on what he would hear now. Not to forget, Elizabeth was already being punished by getting bit by the werewolf. "Speak, Raphael," ordered Calhoun, and the card reader sighed. 

He left the entrance of the room from where he had been standing until now, to walk towards Calhoun before bending down to sit on his heels. He then raised his hand, "Place your hand on mine. It would be best to keep our voices low for the lady's sake." 

When Calhoun placed his hand on the card reader's hand, he noticed how the things around him started to diffuse, including Raphael and Madeline, who was sitting right next to him. It was like a drop of black ink being dissolved in water, and the surrounding changed instantly.

He wasn't sitting on the bench with Madeline anymore. He stood in the middle of the village which he identified to be the village that Madeline's grandparents used to live in. Hearing the tower bell ring loudly, echoing through the place, he saw the villagers start to disperse from the streets, and the sky was turning from blue and pink, to orange and purple. 

"Do you think grandma will be angry if we get back late?" he heard Madeline's voice.

Calhoun caught sight of Madeline and Beth walking past him. They were probably two years younger than now. 
Deed of the sister- Part 2

Calhoun stared at Madeline, who had a smile on her face after something Beth whispered to her. Both the sisters continued to walk, and he knew it wasn't in the direction of where their grandparent's house was as he had already been there a couple of times. 

He heard Madeline question her sister, "Where are we going then? You said it was in the afternoon." 

"Yes, but the plan has changed. You know how people often keep their eyes on us. I thought it would be better for you to meet him now, in a much quieter place," said Beth while moving her head back and forth to make sure they were not being followed. 

"But Beth, I told you, I don't even like him," whispered Madeline. "I think it would be better to go back home."

"Don't be scared, Maddie. He just wants to confess to you. He said how much he loves you and wants to ask papa for your hand. Don't you think he's handsome?" asked Beth. 

Calhoun's eyes narrowed, wondering about whom the girls were speaking about. As far as he knew, the only person Madeline had liked before him was James Heathcliff. Madeline turned to look at Beth, that allowed him to see half of her face where she had pressed her lips. "I think you took it the wrong way when I complimented him last time, Beth."

Beth was being pushy, and she asked in a surprised tone, "You don't? This is going to be really embarrassing. I told Blake that you like him too."

"What?" Madeline furrowed her eyebrows, "Why would you say something like that?" 

"Well, you have been speaking about him and helping him since we came here. What am I going to say to him now? His heart is going to break when he finds the truth." Beth put a sad face, and even though Calhoun was not part of the past, he was only the viewer in here, and he could easily look past the flimsy mask, to see Beth's true intentions. 

Madeline sighed, "You were the one who said it, you fix it. Or we can both speak to him now."

"Me?" Beth asked, surprised. "Oh, dear. I feel like he might kill me alive," and she gave out a nervous laugh. "I was speaking to him about building castles with you."

"Beth!" Madeline scolded.

"I am sorry! I am sorry! I really thought you liked him. You do awfully spend a lot of time with him," Beth brought her hand to scratch her neck. "What are we going to do, Maddie? Let me go clear the things to Blake."

"Yes," said Madeline with a firm tone. But when they reached the place, the person was not there. "Did he forget?"

"He must be late. Maybe he's still at work. Um, why don't you stay here, and I will see if he's at home or in the market? This way, we will not miss him," said Beth to her sister. "We'll be leaving tomorrow early in the morning back to East Carswell and we may not meet him for some time again. But then imagine if he comes home, asking papa for your hand?" 

"That's going to be embarrassing," agreed Madeline. "Okay, I will stay here, and you can go find him. But be quick Beth!" she whisper-yelled to Beth who left her side. 

Calhoun saw Madeline waiting for Beth before she stepped inside the hut when it started to drizzle. Folding both her hands together and walking in circles. She and Beth had walked far enough near an isolated hut away from the other houses of the village. He followed her footsteps, until she took a sharp turn, and gasped as if she could see him.

"Madeline," Calhoun whispered her name, looking at her innocent face that was filled with surprise. He doubted she could see him. "Who are you people?!" Frowning, he turned around to see two men who had entered the hut.

"Isn't she pretty?" said one of the men who was lean and skinny. 

"Indeed, she is. Looks like she is in need of some love," said the other one who had a beard, closing the feeble door of the hut. The two men stepped closer to her. "Dressed up nice, and alone at this hour, how much do you cost?"

Madeline took a step backwards, "You have got it wrong. I am waiting for my sister here." She tried to get away from there, but the two men blocked her way, minimizing her space. 

The skinny man came near her, and said, "We don't mind if your sister joins us. Standing in a lonely hut, and you tell we got it wrong? How much money do you want?" 

"Please leave! Help!" Madeline shouted, and the man with beard quickly covered her mouth, "Mffhgf!" came the muffled words from her. 

Seeing this, Calhoun's blood boiled, and his hand went to get hold of the two men, but his hands only passed through them as they were not real, and it was only a memory. His hands turned to fists, and he gritted his teeth at the inability to do anything as he could only stand by and watch. 

"Fuck!" he cursed in anger. 

Madeline tried to kick and slap the two men, but the men had caught hold of her hands, and that's when Calhoun heard footsteps coming from outside. He quickly passed through the door and saw Beth standing outside the hut.

Beth could hear the muffled sounds of Madeline and the voices of two men coming from the inside the hut. Her hand went to reach out for the door before it fell back to her side where she had a startled look on her face. She took a step back, staring at it without making an effort to go inside the hut. She took a step to the side, not realizing the puddle of wet mud that was next to her, she stepped into the puddle for her shoes to cover itself in mud along with the hem of her dress turned muddy and she flinched away from there. 

A cry for help escaped Madeline's lips, but Beth couldn't hear it. She took another step back ready to leave, taking nearly fifteen steps away from the hut before she came to meet a young man with blonde hair. 

"Where's Madeline?" he questioned Beth. Her lips moved, but she couldn't make up words as if she forgot what she was doing there.

She shook her head, "I left her somewhere here, but I don't know where she went," she replied to him with a worried look, while looking up at him longingly. "We were looking for you. She must be somewhere there. Let me go see," she said, pointing her finger in the opposite direction of the hut. 

Before they could start looking for Madeline, a scream erupted from the hut, and the young man without waiting quickly kicked the door open, before throwing the men away from the young blonde girl who looked frightened. Madeline had tears filled in her eyes, her body trembling in fear with her clothes still intact.

The scene slowly started to dissolve around Calhoun, and he was back to the present where he had been sitting earlier. 

Deed of the sister- Part 3

Since their first meeting in the ballroom during the time of Hallow, he had caught every single word that had come out of Beth's vile lips, but he would have never guessed that she had such ill intentions towards Madeline. 

"How dare she call her as her sister," came the threatening words from Calhoun.

The blood in Calhoun's body boiled out of rage, and he made Madeline lean against the wall, when Raphael said, "She regrets it."

Calhoun glared at Raphael. He stood up, taking one step after another towards the card reader before towering him as he was two inches taller, "Do you know what could have happened if the man didn't hear Madeline scream for help?" 

Raphael nodded his head, "It is the most terrible thing a woman could do to another woman, to allow a male to prey upon. But I know she regrets her past actions now."

"She might regret it right now, and it might be easy to blame her personality for being something that was molded by her grandparents. But there's something called consciousness, which most demons and vampires ignore while the humans often ponder," said Calhoun, his eyes ablaze after seeing how Beth had refused to offer her help to Madeline. "What is the guarantee that her personality will not flip again like before? Don't tell me you have never experienced people changing personalities and their behaviour to the way they used to be again."

For a moment, Raphael stayed quiet. A while ago, he was taken aback when he saw the memory surface above Beth's mind. He had met many people in the past, lived more years than what people perceived his age to be, but this had been surprising.

"I don't think she understood the severity of her actions in the past, but she does now, which is why the girl is plagued by memories of her wrongful actions," stated Raphael, his eyebrows furrowed in thought and he glanced at Madeline who continued to stay asleep. "There was another memory that I picked upon. It must have taken place the same time when this incident took place."

Calhoun raised his hand forward, waiting for Raphael to give his hand so that he could look at the next piece of memory. The card reader carefully stretched his hand forward below the King's hand. 

Again the surrounding around him disappeared, and Calhoun now stood in a room where Madeline was lying on the bed with her eyes wide open. Her grandmother, who was sitting at the edge of the bed, said,

"What happened today, forget it, Maddie. We are glad that your sister and the young man Blake appeared on time to rescue you," her grandmother smiled down at her. Madeline didn't utter a word, and had a lost look on her face. Snapping out of it, her brown eyes met her grandmothers. "You don't have to feel scared anymore. We have made sure to scare the men away and they will never do anything like what happened today. Your sister will be right here with you. Your big sister, Beth," her grandmother emphasized on the word big. 

If Calhoun had the ability, he would have caught hold of the older woman's neck right this instant and ripped it apart slowly, so that she would know what pain felt like. How could they let the men go without giving them any punishment?! Calhoun wanted to find those men right away and beat them until they could not walk or see the next day.

"You will be alright, right?" asked Madeline's grandmother and the young girl gave a small nod. "Beth," the older woman called the girl, who hovered at the door of the room. 

"Yes, grandmother," answered Beth. 

"Make sure to keep your sister company and don't let her feel lonely. What happened today was an unfortunate incident. It would also be a lesson to both of you that you should return home early rather than wander by yourself. Sometimes no place is safe," said the woman before bending down and kissing Madeline's forehead. "Now rest and dream something good. I promise you would have forgotten everything bad that happened today and start the new day as nothing happened once you wake up." 

Their grandmother got up from the bed, looking at both the girls before stepping out of the room. Beth stared at Madeline, and Calhoun tried to find an ounce of guilt on Beth's face, but there was none of it. 

"Are you doing okay?" asked Beth in a low voice from where she stood at the door, and Madeline stared at Beth before nodding her head. 

"Did Mr. Blake leave?" questioned Madeline, and Beth shook her head.

"Grandpa was speaking to him in the living room a while ago. But Blake has left now and gone to his own house. I thanked him on your behalf for coming to your aid," said Beth, and she then stepped inside the room that they used to sleep in, closing the door behind her.

Beth walked around the other side of the bed, getting her pillow ready, and then sliding inside the blanket. "Do you want me to keep the lights on?" she asked Madeline.

"No," whispered her sister, "You can blow the candles." 

Not needing to be told twice, Beth leaned forward towards the candle-stand that was on the side stand. Once she had blown out all the candles, she slid back in the bed and placed her head on the pillow with little to no words to spare for her sister, who was nearly assaulted today. 

A few minutes passed before Madeline asked Beth, "Did you clean your shoes?" 

Beth, who had her back facing Madeline, slowly turned towards Madeline in the darkness of the room. "Shoes? Why?" There was a tone of puzzlement in Beth's voice. 

 Madeline didn't answer right away, and she took her time as if gathering her thoughts. "Back in there, you stepped in the puddle of water that was outside the hut."

Beth herself didn't remember what Madeline was speaking about and when it finally dawned on her about her shoes and her dress that got dirty, a deep frown formed on her forehead in the dark.

Her eyes then suddenly widened. How did Madeline know that she had stepped in it?!

"I-I will be cleaning them tomorrow," answered Beth, and without another question, she turned her back again to get some sleep, with a doubt of how hovering on her mind. 

"I see," came the dull answer from Madeline, who had been staring in Beth's direction, before pulling the blanket close to her neck while staring at the darkness around her. 

When Madeline was being held by the men, she had tried to get away from their hold, while looking at the door hoping that someone would barge in and help her. The hut had been built in such a way that the bottom part of the walls of the hut had an opening, letting one know if someone was standing outside. 

She had caught sight of her sister's shoes from the gap of the hut, standing out there for a long time without moving to help her. Thinking about it, Madeline took a deep breath before exhaling it out. 
Unheard: What happened

Music Recommendation: I'm Eleanor Reed by Tim Wynn


Madeline stared at the darkness above her. She thought about what happened back there in the hut today. The incident that took place today had scared her, leaving her shaken, but worse was that her sister had stood outside as if Beth didn't know she was in there being attacked by two men. 

"Beth?" Madeline called her sister, but receiving no response, she believed Beth was asleep. She didn't know why, but something didn't feel right to her. Seconds passed followed by minutes, and Madeline continued to lay down on the bed, wide awake. 

After some time, she heard some sounds that were coming from outside the room, and wondering if her grandparents were awake at this hour of the night. She got up to sit upright on the bed. With the moon that showed itself in the sky, the moonlight fell into the room, and she could see things better than before now. 

With more sounds coming from outside, she carefully pushed her blanket to the side and got out of the bed without waking Beth. Her family was everything to Madeline. She wondered if Beth had got scared and worried, which was why she didn't get inside the hut. 

Padding her feet carefully towards the door, she heard the angry voice of her grandfather, "What were you thinking by doing something like that?! I thought we had already dropped the matter and decided to keep an eye on her." 

Madeline furrowed her eyebrows, wondering about whom her grandfather was speaking about. Being inside the room, it was hard to eavesdrop on their conversation, and her hand reached out for the knob of the door, and turning it around, she stepped out of the room. It seemed like her grandparents were in their room, and they just happened to raise their voice which was why she was able to hear them.

"Because nothing dies that easily. We might have put her in the coffin, but that hasn't changed anything!" whispered her grandmother. "Sometimes I can sense the tinge of darkness around her, radiating because of who she might be."

"Rubbish!" her grandfather dismissed his wife's words. "It's been many years since she has been out and since then she has shown no sign of it. It only means the curse has moved to someone else." 

"I know you don't believe in it. But I was close to finding out today. Mary said-"

"Mary is delusional. She thinks she knows better than what we know," came the stern voice of the old man. Madeline made sure to hide behind the wall and not be noticed by them. "She is not like us. You know how our lineage works. If I hadn't got there on time, things would have gone haywire."

"We would have known the truth!" said her grandmother, and Madeline wondered what truth and about whom and what they were speaking about. "I hired the two men to prod her ability so that it would unleash and let us know if the ability still runs in her. I have been waiting for that opportunity. I was following the girls since afternoon, knowing how much of a fool Beth can be. I even removed the sound through the spell so that Beth would not be able to hear a word that escaped from the hut."

The older man turned around, his forehead held a deep frown and his eyes narrowed. "You think the girls won't find it to be suspicious? We have been manipulating their memory for a long time. Don't you know how it works? The more we manipulate, the more space forms in their minds which will make them question before trying to get an answer for it."

Madeline's eyes widened hearing this, and her lips parted before pressing them together when she heard her grandmother chuckle. 

"They are children. They have never questioned before, to do it now. And I have always been good when it comes to hiding their memory," said the woman. "I was so close, and you put back the spell of sound so that Beth and that useless man could hear the sound coming from the inside the hut."

"I did what was right. Going after something evil and then hoping something evil will come of use by harming our granddaughters is not something I will stand for. They are both humans, and we have verified it. Don't pull a stunt like this again," said her grandfather in a stern voice. Madeline stepped away from the wall, taking a step back for her back to hit something or someone. 

When she turned around, Madeline came to face Beth. How long had she been standing here? Madeline brought her hands up to her lips. 

"What are you doing here?" whispered Beth in question. "What did grandpa mean?"

Before Madeline could respond to the question, both the girls heard their grandfather say, "Fix it right now. Erase the memory. We don't want anyone asking questions." Madeline quickly held Beth's hand and pulled her back to the room. Closing the door shut, she took her sister back to the bed. 

"What's going on, Maddie? What did grandma mean?" questioned Beth with a confused look on her face.

It seemed like Beth had heard only half of the things their grandparents had said while it was Madeline who had heard most of it. Her grandparents would be here at any moment, and for the first time, Madeline was more scared of her very own people than the strangers outside the house. 

"Beth, what happened today?" questioned Madeline, staring into Beth in the moderately dark room. She had not pressed for an answer earlier, but she wanted to know now, "Quick!" 

Beth furrowed her eyebrows, "I was looking for you. I came near the hut and thought that I heard your voice, but then I heard growling sounds coming from the hut. I mistook it, and I don't know why. I was going to reach out for the door, but I couldn't. It was like for a moment, I forgot something."

Madeline bit her lip. "Y-you weren't sure if I was in there?" Was that true, then? What her grandma told her grandpa? Was grandma the one to who had sent the two men? Fear trickled down her body. 

"I feel guilty, and I am sorry I didn't open the door! I don't know what happened. One moment I heard your voice and the next, there were these growls. But when I saw you in there after Blake pushed the door…" Beth looked down, unable to meet Madeline's eyes. 

Beth didn't know how it happened and why it happened. But after returning home and before heading to bed, shame had settled into her bones, and she didn't know how to make amends. The thought of Madeline mistaking her actions of what happened made it even worse.

"Get to bed, quick," whispered Madeline on hearing footsteps approaching their room. 

Beth had no idea of what was going on, but seeing Madeline lay down on the bed, pulling the blanket to her neck before closing her eyes, she did the same. Soon the door of the room opened and in came their grandma. 

The woman had brought a candle along with her, and she came to stand next to Madeline. Placing the candle on the bedside, she ran her aged hand over Madeline's head while the girls acted as if they were fast asleep. 

A sigh escaped from the woman's lips, and she said, "I am going to get rid of the bad memories of what happened today. You will wake up tomorrow as if nothing happened and that it was all just a dream that never happened." The woman then whispered something under her breath.

Unable to resist, Beth, who had closed her eyes, slowly opened them. She saw her grandmother place her hands on Madeline's temples. Her sister's body jerked, and it had Beth worry about what was going on in here. What was her grandmother muttering? When Madeline gasped before her body turned slack as if she had turned unconscious, Beth turned concerned. She quickly closed her eyes when her grandmother looked her way. 

Even though Beth had closed her eyes, she could feel the brightness increase around her as their grandmother came to her side of the bed, and Beth's body turned rigid, but she continued to keep her eyes closed. 

Beth heard her grandmother whisper something incoherent, a language she had never heard before. The old woman then placed her hands on Beth's temples', and the muttering continued, but unlike Madeline, Beth's body didn't jerk. 

The older woman looked satisfied with the work she had done here, and she blew out the candle that she had carried in here before closing the door behind her.

When the morning arrived, at the time of breakfast where both the girls were going to leave the village of Carnival to go back to their parent's place, their grandmother asked, "Did you both have a good time here in the village?"

Beth was quiet, helping her grandfather in spreading butter on the bread when her eyes raised to look at Madeline. Her sister smiled.

"We did, grandma. We'll be sure to visit as soon as we can again. Right, Beth?" on Madeline's question, Beth was slightly confused. So much had happened, and Madeline said they had a good time?

"I guess," replied Beth. Once she was done with the bread, she said, "I was wondering if I could go meet Mr. Blake-"

"For what?" came the sharp tone of their grandmother. 

Beth sensed the hostility, something that Madeline overlooked. "I had to give him the book I borrowed from him. Both Madeline and I were thinking about visiting him before we leave."

"You can give it to us, Elizabeth. Mr. Blake has left the village and won't be coming anytime soon," this time it was their grandfather who had responded to her words. "Do you remember what happened yesterday, Madeline?" The question was direct without being beaten around. 

Madeline nodded her head, "Beth and I went to the market to get the watermelon seeds to plant in the backyard of our house. We then went to visit Mrs. Heckle before returning home."

Beth wondered if she had dreamt what happened because yesterday had not been a good day. 

"And what about you, Elizabeth?" her grandfather questioned her, his eyes staring straight into her. She put up a smile.

"We had delicious tea at Mrs. Heckle's house, Maddie forgot about the biscuits," said Beth and this pleased their grandparents. 

"Wonderful," chimed her grandmother, and Beth caught the subtle exchange between the two older people's eyes in the room. 

Once when Beth and Madeline left the village in the carriage, Beth decided to bring up the topic about what happened yesterday because everyone behaved like nothing bad had happened. There had been many times in the past where Madeline had taken the attention of the men whom Beth liked, which had filled her heart with envy, but that didn't mean she would do something like that to Madeline. 

Her grandparents had behaved strangely and the way her grandmother looked at her, it was like she had a look of suspicion in her eyes. 

"Um, Maddie?" 

"Yes?" Madeline turned from looking through the window to face Beth. "Did you forget something?" 

Beth didn't know how to say it, but she tried, "About yesterday-"

"We should go to Mrs. Heckle's home again. She enjoys both our company, doesn't she?" While Madeline went ahead in speaking about the tea, Beth noticed how her sister had forgotten the bad things that took place yesterday. 

"It's about last night about grandma and grandpa," Beth chose her words carefully, but Madeline had a blank look. 

"What about them?" asked Madeline, and Beth shook her head. 

"Nothing," replied Beth before looking out of the window. Her grandmother had done something to Madeline. As her sister didn't seem to be bothered by it, Beth decided to drop and forget the incident. 
Visitants- Part 1

Calhoun's anger didn't simmer down. Unlike Madeline, who had the heart of an angel who could forgive people's action, he wasn't like that. He saw how Beth's hand had reached for the door only to fall back to her side. And he had also witnessed the scene after that, where Raphael had gone to extract some more memories of that time from Madeline. 

Though it looked like Beth had not attempted to help Madeline, there were some factors to look at, like how it was their grandmother who had sent the men at Madeline so that her dark angel abilities would trigger again. 

If Calhoun knew about this earlier, he wouldn't have left the old folks to die that easily. He would have ripped their eyeballs before torturing them until they wished death upon themselves. The question here was if Madeline's sister would have screamed for help if their grandmother didn't intervene in the situation by putting a spell on the hut. 

"I know you want to kill her," said Raphael, and Calhoun's eyes snapped to look at the card reader. 

Calhoun didn't bother to respond to Raphael's words. Remembering the helplessness Madeline felt when she was in the hut, her muffled words boiled his blood. Her grandparents were nothing but a piece of shit who had never cared about her. They had put her through so many situations, yet she had the heart to worry for them. 

"Do you know where that man went? The person named Blake," asked Calhoun, his eyes burning in question.

"I don't think either of them knows," answered Raphael, "Isn't it strange that what her grandmother did to Lady Madeline didn't affect Lady Elizabeth?"

This was also something that Calhoun had questioned in his mind. 

"It looks like the girl is not a complete human either. Unless she built some sort of resistance to the old hag's abilities," commented Calhoun. When both the men heard the sound come from inside of the room, Calhoun ordered, "Stay here with Madeline. I have something to discuss with her." 

And Calhoun got up from where he was sitting and stepped into the room where Beth was. 

The bite that Beth received from the werewolf was changing and destroying her internally, making it unable for her to have a sound sleep. She groaned in pain, and when her eyes opened, she caught sight of the King who had a cold expression on his face. 

"How does it feel knowing you are going to die soon?" asked Calhoun. The question was enough to have Beth look at him in shock, and she looked frightened. 

"I-I am going to d-die?" stuttered Beth. 


Calhoun pulled out the chair that was in the room, bringing it towards the bed, and he sat down crossing his legs one over the other.

Beth had a look of horror on her face. Madeline had given her hope that they would do something, speaking about some antidote that existed as a cure. Was it not there anymore? 

"W-where's Madeline?" asked Beth, looking around the room and then at the closed door. 

"She's sleeping. She got tired and fell asleep," replied Calhoun, staring at Beth's face, who was in a mode of panic. "You know what people do when they are going to die? They start reminiscing, and I am here for it before you die."

Raphael, who stood outside sighed but he didn't go to interrupt the conversation that was taking place between the lady and Calhoun in the room. He wasn't sure if Elizabeth would die before the venom of the werewolf would break her body or if Calhoun would kill her by his hands or by his words. 

Back inside the room, Beth couldn't believe that she was going to die. She had lived only for a few years, and she was yet to marry and have children, and she was horrified, thinking she was going to die now!

"I-I don't want to die," pleaded Beth and Calhoun hummed. 

"Don't worry, Lady Elizabeth. I have heard people say that the dying person barely feels the pain. How does it feel, though, to end up in the situation you were digging for your sister in the past." Beth didn't understand Calhoun's words. 

"I didn't dig anything." And just as Beth completed her words, the vase that was not too far away from her left side, broke into pieces.

"Jealousy makes people do unexplainable things. Remember what Markus did and what you tried to do," Calhoun reminded her, "Don't think I have forgotten how you are and what you did. Madeline might forgive you, but I haven't. My eyes will always be on you."

Fear filled Beth, and she turned nervous. She bowed her head, "Forgive me, my King. I am trying to make my amends. Please forgive my actions." 

"Is it worth forgiving you?" asked Calhoun in a calm voice. Beth looked up at Calhoun. "A mistake committed once, twice or even five times can be overlooked, but I don't know why. I feel like if I allow you around Madeline, you will have her throat slit to save yourself. Am I wrong?" 

Calhoun glared down at Beth without sparing an ounce of sympathy towards her.

"I would like to think that it was all your grandparent's fault, but you knew what happened that day in the hut. Yet, until now, you didn't think about her happiness. You realized I would send you straight to a place far worse than hell, and it was then you decided it was time to change." 

Beth shook nervously, the pain that she felt in her leg was negligible compared to the way the King was looking at her. 

"I never meant any harm to befall on her," Beth shook her head, and her eyes were quick to well up in tears. "I wish I had entered the hut, but I don't know why I couldn't. Please, I didn't mean any ill towards Madeline." 

"It's something I find very hard to digest." The intensity in Calhoun's eyes didn't drop. He tapped his finger on the armrest. "What if I tell you that the antidote I have found comes from sacrificing Madeline's life. Would you want to be saved?"
Visitants- Part 2

Every tap on the armrest by Calhoun's finger had made Beth's heart jump in her chest and dread continued to fill her mind by thinking what Calhoun had on his mind. She knew she would have to face matters which she had not addressed before. But Beth would have never thought that the person she would need to answer would be the King of Devon himself. 

She was not proud of her past, and if she could, she would like to forget every wrong doing of hers. But the problem was that she couldn't. She didn't know what her grandparents had been up to in the past because it was only that night did her grandma whisper things that she didn't understand. Beth didn't know how the King found out, but she meant it when she said, she didn't mean any ill towards Madeline. 

She knew staying mum was going to be of no use. Therefore she opened her mouth to speak, "I did terrible things in the past, I-" 

"I didn't question you about what you did or how you feel right now. My question was if you are willing to sacrifice your sister to keep yourself alive," Calhoun looked at Beth with sharp eyes. "You are already aware of how there are people who want to kill Madeline. I am asking because who knows, one of them might one day approach you to trade for the antidote in exchange for Madeline's life."

Beth didn't know how to answer it. She had never wanted to hurt her sister and now she was trying to become a good person. And the thought about her turning to a werewolf scared her. When she didn't reply, another vase broke in the room, and Beth looked startled at Calhoun who glared at her. Was the King breaking the vases out of anger?

"Even if I said, I don't want the antidote like that, you wouldn't believe me," whispered Beth. 

"You've got that right," responded Calhoun. He tilted his head, "You might be nice now, but what if you flip back? You have given me no reason to trust you, Elizabeth Harris. Forging the letter, trying to belittle Madeline, going as far as to attempt treason. You have quite some list in there."

"You might not believe me, but I will not put Madeline's life in harm. The only reason I didn't bring up the matter again because I was confused about what transpired that night. The next morning when I tried bringing it up, it was as if Madeline didn't remember what happened. I had seen the look on her face that night when it happened, and I felt guilty," Beth finally confessed.

"Guilt? About what? A person with guilt shows empathy, tries to make amends or did you lose your memory like how Madeline's memory was lost?" Calhoun's eyes narrowed at Beth. 

"No…" whispered Beth, "I-I don't know what my grandmother tried, but whatever she did it was like Madeline forgot, but I didn't. I think she did some kind of hypnosis."

"And you never questioned it?" interrogated Calhoun and Beth shook her head. 

"I was never my grandparents favourite. At least that is what I used to think about before Madeline revealed why they kept her close by. I-I felt less burdened that Madeline didn't remember the incident. Therefore I never uttered a word about it with anybody and behaved as I normally would with her. I swear I didn't hear a sound from the hut and thought I imagined it for the first time. Else I would have gone inside to help her!" 

Beth had a desperate look on her face, not because she didn't want to be killed, but because she didn't want to carry the guilt with her anymore. Along with Madeline, she had tried to forget about it too, but since she had started to own up to her actions, the things she did before, had started to weigh more in her mind. 

Though Calhoun looked like he was ready to snap her neck, he listened to every word that was uttered from Beth's mouth, looking at her expressions keenly and listening to her heartbeat. He had kept a close eye on her, and even though her actions right now were sincere, Calhoun continued to look at her maliciously. 

"What can I do to fix it?" asked Beth, knowing no matter what she would come up with it would never be enough.

"I am not the one who damaged the things around. It was you," Calhoun stood up, pulling out the gun and Beth's eyes widened with horror. "Either ways you are going to die because of the werewolf bite, I will only help you speed up the process." He offered Beth a smile, and she noticed how his actions didn't sync with his facial expression.

The King had killed many people in the past, and for her past actions, Beth knew the King would not blink his eyes when it came to killing her. Tears streamed down from her eyes. She didn't know what to do. 

"How about I remind Madeline about what you did, and let her decide if you are worth to live around her or I can help you save your face. This way, Madeline will continue to believe that you are a good sister who was changing for good," stated Calhoun. 

Beth's face turned pale. 

"No, please!" she pleaded, her voice coming out as a whisper. It was after many years did she and Madeline start to have a proper sisterly bond. Beth didn't want to jeopardize it. 

"I will give you an easier choice. Let Madeline know about every single deed of yours or you dying. I will make it quick." Calhoun pulled the cork behind, and Beth's heart rate increased in terror. 

Beth didn't know what she was supposed to do now. She could already feel the shame filling her mind by thinking about Madeline knowing about her past deeds, and more tears spilt down on her cheeks. Anyways she was going to die because of the werewolf's bite, thought Beth to herself.

Calhoun hadn't dropped his hand down, and hearing another sound of the cork, Beth closed her eyes, readying herself to die. For a couple of seconds, she sat there unmoving, waiting for the gunshot, but it never came. 

Just as Beth opened her eyes, Calhoun pulled the trigger and the sound of the gunshot echoed.