Moonlit Shadows
Disclaimer: See first chapter

Rating: PG-13, for later chapters and as a precaution

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A/N: Yay! Chapter 3 is finally done! And Dracula is finally in it! Though, sadly, at the very end. ah well, that is ok, as long as he is in it!

Thanks again for the reviews!!!!!!!!!!! It's what keeps me going at times, lol.

I hope you enjoy this chapter! Please review!

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Chapter 3

O Starry Night

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RECAP:

The man held the girl more tightly in his arms now, almost protectively, and slowly stroked her hair, eventually exposing her neck. He then held her head in one hand and the rest of her body he had draped on the other, while he brought her neck up to his lips and gave her a caressing kiss before piercing her flesh with his fangs.

He slowly drank the hot liquid, that was her blood, running through her veins, until her pulse began to dim and then stop altogether. Her body then lay limp in his arms.

He dropped the girl's body carelessly on the road beside him and licked the remains of the crimson blood from his lips. "Here I come Gabriel…"

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The morning was proving to be a gorgeous one. The sunlight gently streaming through the soft white satin and lace curtains made the room look cheery and full of light. The soft breeze coming in from the open doors leading out onto the balcony also added to the effect, making the curtains dance and sway in a most exotic dance.

The sunlight soon abandoned its play with the curtains and doors, and went on to the beautiful canopy bed sitting in its lonely corner of the room. The curtains protecting the bed's occupant from the mischievous rays of the sun. They, however, were unfruitful in their mission, for there was one space, which they hadn't covered, and that's where the sun made its playful attack.

"Ugh…it's too early……" mumbled Genevieve, still enveloped in sleep's soft embrace. She quickly grabbed a pillow from her side and placed it over her head and continued her blissful sleep.

Her temporary peace, however, was shattered by the maids who quietly rushed into the room and started to straighten the room out a bit. Their hustle and bustle about the room was, if anything, less than silent however.

"Oh no…just a few more minutes please…" Genevieve thought to herself as she buried herself deeper into the warm blankets and tried to block the suns rays and the maids' loud cleaning from invading her dreams.

She opened one eye and chanced a glance from underneath her pillow only to be welcomed with the curtains being practically torn away and the carefree sunshine splashing onto her face.

"Good morning Genevieve! Time to rise and shine! It's so beautiful outside!"

Analee's face soon was directly in front of Genevieve's line of vision and was beaming with warmth and delight. Analee, though a maid, was one of Genevieve's closest friends and someone that she confided in immensely.

"Please Analee, just give me a few more minutes. I am extremely exhausted" replied Genevieve and tried to seek cover from the sun by putting her head under the pillows once more. Analee just replied with a quick "hmph!" and continued with her everyday business of cleaning and picking out what the young miss would wear that day.

Meanwhile, after a few tries of trying to go back to sleep and tossing and turning, Genevieve just finally gave up and slowly got out of bed; her eyes still closed and her head slightly bent forward, making her auburn curls spill around her and framing her gentle face.

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I slowly got out of bed and put my feet on the feather soft carpet and then into my slippers. I still kept my eyes shut, however, for I still didn't want the taste of sleep to go away completely, so soon. I could feel Analee gently take hold of my arm and guide me towards the porcelain base where I then gently splashed some cool water onto my face and then moved towards the task of taking off my white silk nightgown.

"There you go…" Analee said soothingly as she helped me into my corset and later into my emerald green satin gown with the light green ruffles at the bottom. I then opened my eyes slowly and stared into the full-length mirror that was on my wall. I did a little turn and looked at myself again, Analee looking at me for approval of her fashion decisions.

" 'Tis a lovely dress, Genevieve. And it complements your green eyes so nicely!" Analee exclaimed. I looked again at the mirror, turning this way and that eyeing my reflection with scrutiny.

"I suppose it does…." I replied, glancing at the mirror again. " But, I am going to go out to the garden today, Analee. I was going to go plant some more roses by the fountain. I think this is too dressy for that task, don't you think?" I asked her reflection.

"Oh, yes. You do have a point, but I just wanted for you to look extra special today," Analee commented, a smile on her face.

"Oh, and why is that may I ask?" I said curiously while slightly raising one eyebrow and looking over my shoulder at her.

Analee looked at me with surprise. "Well, today is your birthday." She eyed me and then her face registered understanding and even more surprise. "Don't mean to tell me that you have forgotten!"

How could I have forgotten that?! Sometimes I just don't know where my head is…

"Uh…yes, well, um. Just let me finish in the garden and then I'll change." I gave her a quick smile and turned back around to the mirror while trying to get out of the gown and corset. "Uh, you may go now Analee," I stammered, trying to seem composed, though I must say, it wasn't very convincing.

"But Genevieve, you haven't been dressed yet!" exclaimed Analee, horrified.

"Honestly Analee! Just get this burdensome corset off me and find my gardening clothes please. I can dress myself sometimes too, you know." I rolled my eyes and took a deep breath while she unlaced the corset and then exhaled when it finally came off. "Those things don't let anyone breath!" I mumbled under my breath.

Analee quickly ran off towards my mahogany wardrobe and came back holding a peasant blouse made of rough cotton and a brown ragged skirt, looking at it with disgust all the while. "Really, Genevieve, you can get better clothes than these for gardening, you know. And don't you feel a bit exposed?"

I rolled my eyes, exasperated, snatched the skirt from her hand and began to get dressed. "For your information, Analee, I actually feel quite comfortable in these clothes and don't feel indecent at all. If anything I can actually breath normally for once and don't have to worry about dirtying my dress."

"I only wanted to make sure that you were comfortable in these, because if you weren't, we do have some different clothes you can change into." She said as she helped me put the blouse on and began to put my hair in a loose bun with some wisps of auburn hair framing my face.

While she kept on fussing with my hair and muttering to herself about how it was her fault that I had not been brought up to be an obedient young lady who actually loved to her look her best, I began searching through my small jewelry box, looking for my most prized piece of jewelry that I always wore and took off only before I went to bed.

"Analee," I mumbled, still searching through the many jeweled brooches and pearl earrings, " have you seen my ring? I can't seem to find it. I would have sworn that I put it in here before I went to bed last night…"

Analee quickly straightened. " Um, I don't know Genevieve. What ring are you talking about? You do have quite a few…"

"Ugh, you know Analee!" I said exasperated as I started to search more frantically through the assortment of rings that I owned, most of them gifts from my father when he would go on trips. All of them were there…except for one. " It's my favorite one Analee. The one that has the emeralds on it and that small place in the middle of it where there used to be a stone."

" Genevieve, are you absolutely sure that you put it in you jewelry box before you went to bed? Maybe you left it in on your bedside table…"

I quickly turned to face her and looked at her suspiciously. "No, I didn't…" I began, trying to establish eye contact, though she was avoiding my scrutinizing gaze. "Don't you remember? I was about to put it into my jewelry box and then you asked me to read before I put it away and give it to you for awhile because you wanted to see it. And when I finished, you gave it back to me and I put it in there and went to bed." I then took a deep breath and waited for her to say something.

"Well, Genevieve, I must be going since I have other duties to attend to but I will be on the lookout for your ring and I'm sure that it will turn up by dinnertime," she stammered before dipping for a quick and messy curtsy and then running off towards the kitchens.

"Analee! Wait please!" I shouted only to be ignored. "Hmph, she is lucky that I consider her more a friend than a maid. I know of many people that wouldn't put up with this…"

I tried to put the thought of my missing ring out of my head for the moment and was determined to not let this little soiree ruin my birthday. It was quickly replaced with the thought of going out to the garden on this beautifully sunny and glorious day, and garden to my heart's content until suppertime. Looking around my room I seized my handkerchief, which I quickly tied around my head to get the loose strands of auburn out of my face and so that my hair wouldn't get too messy when I went outside. I then proceeded down the stairs and out the back door.

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I was greeted by a soft breeze, which started to play with my rebellious locks, and the golden sunshine on my back. Inhaling the soft perfume of the roses I loved so much and hearing the birds sing their smooth melody all the while, I continued walking to where my trowel, a potted rose, and watering can were against the fountain, right were I had left them the day before.

"Hello my darlings," I said happily while observing and admiring their pink blossoms. "I have brought someone new." I quickly put the newly potted rose next to me and inspected it. This rose was different from the others and that is why it had caught my eye. For one, it had very deep green leaves and many, many tiny buds. But the one thing that caught my eye was the color of the rose petals. All of them were a deep crimson red, almost black. I was mesmerized by the dark and almost melancholy hue and was brought out of my reverie by a splash of color out of the corner of my eye.

I looked over to the spot only to find that it was a small bluebird. I saw it take flight and then resumed to digging a hole for my precious new rose, all the while thinking about my lost ring and where I could have left it. After thinking about this for some time, I inspected the hole, deemed it big enough, and then proceeded to transplant the exotic flower, being careful not to touch its many sharp thorns.

I put the rose down for a second as I took a deep breath and wiped off a bead of sweat trickling down the side of my face, for the heat was becoming unbearable. It almost seemed like the temperature had risen ten degrees in less than two minutes.

"That is so strange…" I muttered to myself as I shielded my face with my free hand and squinted at the cerulean blue sky. I stared at the white puffy clouds that were contrasting so much with the blue of the sky, for awhile, and then looked at the rose cradled in my hand before starting to plant it in it's new home.

"Ah, well…weather has been strange late-…Ow!"

I looked back down to find a single bead of deep red liquid steadily growing bigger on the pad of my pointer finger before rolling down the side and finally falling onto the newly removed earth that would soon cover and nurture the red rose.

Instinctively I brought my finger to my lips and sucked at, trying to make the blood go away, but in vain. "Oh blast," I mumbled with my finger still in my mouth. "I am going to have to see what Analee can do about this."

Just then I saw something move out of the corner of my eye. Something that was the color of midnight, and had a mysterious yet vaguely familiar aura to it. I turned to where I thought it was but found nothing. Only the midnight rose and its mound of dirt and drop of blood hugging it. I hastily scooped up the loose earth and covered the roots of the new rose with it, unceremoniously patting at it when I was finished to make sure that the rose would stay in place.

Quickly, I bundled my skirts together and ran towards the kitchens, only to be greeted by Alana, my sister.

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Alana was three years my senior, though sometimes we could just have fun and be like equals, playing in the sparkling blue pond during hot summer days, such as this one.

She had golden sunshine yellow hair, that sparkled like gold in the sun, and eyes that were a deep aquamarine; a color whose beauty could surpass the legendary clear aquamarine color of the Caribbean Sea. She had a beautiful complexion and very delicate cream skin that was always tainted with a subtle apricot hue on her cheeks. This all lead to her delicate nose and finally to her rosebud pink lips that would often have a smile for anyone who needed it. I simply adored my older sister and secretly strove to be just like her in her grace and beauty, though unfortunately, I had been the odd weed born amongst a garden of roses in my family. My parents were also fair haired and fair skinned and Alana was the one who really looked like she belonged. I, however, with my tan skin, green eyes, and auburn hair stuck out like a sore thumb, though this barely mattered to my family for we were a loving one that always would stand by each other's side no matter what the situation. And I was grateful for that.

"Why off in such a rush Genevieve?!" Alana's clear bell-like voice rang out. I spun around and quickly hid my sore and still bleeding finger behind my back.

"Oh, no reason…" I said while slowly tiptoeing to the kitchen.

"Oh is that so?" She sighed and cocked her head. I could feel her usual warm but now cool blue eyes scrutinizing my dress and how muddy and dirty it was and how overall disheveled I was. She slowly started shaking her head before walking up to me.

"Honestly Gen, what are we going to do with you? You are now old enough to marry and instead of thinking of being presentable and of such talents needed to run a household, you are out here in the garden daydreaming and gardening. What a waste of good time."

"It is not a waste of time!" I argued, trying to get out of her grasp and still trying to hide my finger amongst all the folds of my skirt.

"Well I think it is and mother thinks so too." She said that with a final tug at a wrinkle on my skirt. "Mom wants you to get ready for supper, Genevieve. And she told me to tell you to put on your best dress."

She then went off toward the fountain and left me there looking at her with a quizzical look on my face. Before turning the corner, she laid her hand on a stone brick slightly jutting out of the wall and turned a little at my direction before saying over her shoulder: "You have a young gentleman visitor tonight Gen." And then disappearing around the corner with a sly smile on her face.

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A gentleman? Visiting me tonight? At suppertime? With my family? Well, you could say I was quite baffled and couldn't figure out whom in the world it could be. To keep my mind preoccupied, however, I started getting ready for dinner and found myself actually trying to look my best for a change. I took a nice warm water bath that had rosewater added to it, making my skin smell like a bouquet of blooming roses in the springtime. Afterwards Analee helped me get back into the green satin gown that she had helped me get into that very morning.

"Oh Genevieve," She said tearfully admiring me and the way that my dress made me sea green eyes sparkle and glisten even more, "You look like a young woman now and not the little girl that used to run around in the garden picking flowers and catching butterflies." She then wiped a lone tear from her face.

As a finishing touch, she put half of my auburn curls up into an elegant bun, and the rest she let loose around my shoulders with a small wreath of pink roses and baby's breath circling the chestnut bun. Hugging me gently, she helped me put on my pair of pearl drop earrings and my fragile gold chain that I would almost always wear since my favorite, and still missing, ring would be always dangling from it.

I sighed, trying to forget my lost ring and admire my reflection in the gold ornate mirror. The reflection revealed a young girl and two curious sea green eyes that were adorned with long lashes, tan skin, a small mouth though plump pink lips, and a river of chestnut curls cascading down my back in waves and also framing my face and bouncing on my shoulders. "Genevieve," announced Analee and quickly snapping me out of my quiet reverie, "It's time for your birthday supper." My reflection gained a smile and then turned around as I got out of my chair, put my dance slippers on, and headed toward the formal dining room where we usually have dinner with guests or celebrate special occasions such as birthdays.

As I got to the French doors leading to the dining room, I noticed that my family was already seated and had been waiting for a while, along with our guest.

"Ah, there you are, Genevieve. I was starting to worry if you were feeling ill and couldn't come down to your own birthday celebration," Father whispered in my ear after he had stood up from the table, as did our male guest, and had gently placed a kiss on my head.

"Sorry daddy," I mumbled quickly and occasionally looking up and sneaking peeks at our guest from under my eyelashes.

"Quite alright, quite alright," he chuckled and then waved his hand toward our guest. "This is Anthony Williams, he's Jonathon William's brother."

Anthony Williams then came over to me, held my hand, and then kissed it. "I must say Miss Walker, that it truly is a pleasure to be making you acquaintance…" His words were sickly sweet and made me uncomfortable.

I then challenged his gaze with my own cold green one. "I must assure you Mr. Williams, the pleasure is mine." I then presented him with a dazzling smile and sat down.

Now where had I heard that name before…Williams….Williams….aha! Jonathon was one of Alana's best friend's husband. Of course sooner or later it would come out that the last of the rich Walker girls was coming into marriageable age and since Alana already had a suitor and the Williams were known for being a little on the money needy side, one of them was bound to try his luck at one of us. How unfortunate that it had to be me.

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Dinner went as unceremoniously as ever except that my favorite dishes were being served, that we had strawberry filled cake for dessert, mother and father AND Alana were both staring at the direction of Anthony and I trying to figure out if anything was going on, and the fact that Anthony kept on trying to flirt with me, to which I replied with an idiotic girlish giggle and then with quiet.

After dinner, unfortunately, Anthony had to leave and so my family was left alone to ourselves for the rest of the evening. The only thing left now to truly end my birthday was to open the presents.

The first one was from Alana. It happened to be a pink silk shawl that I had often admired. I gave her a hug and started opening the next present, which was from mother and father. It was a small box wrapped in white paper and topped with a small green bow made out of ribbon.

"Go on Genevieve. We hope you like it." My parents sat there expectantly, waiting to see the expression that their gift would arouse. I slowly peeled away the white wrapping paper and opened the little white box. A glint caught my eye and I took off the lid. Inside the small box, nestled within some layers of soft white tissue, was my favorite and no longer missing ring. It had been polished and was now its original bright gold color and a small diamond now replaced the empty hole in the middle of the ring. My face brightened and I attacked my parents with hugs and kisses. "Oh my goodness! You are the best parents! Thank you so much!"

"We thought you might like to get that ring fixed since you always have it on and it was getting pretty dirty. Not to mention that the empty space between all those beautiful emeralds was taking away from the beauty of the ring. So, we decided to fix it for you," my mom said joyfully as she saw how happy this small gift had made me.

"Thank you! I really do love you all. You are the best family anyone could ever hope for and I wouldn't trade any of you for anything. Why, I would even die for you!" I said through happy tears.

"Oh don't be ridiculous Genevieve, you will never have to make a decision such as that," my father replied. "Honestly, you women are such emotional creatures," he exclaimed to himself while checking his pocket-watch.

"Well, I hate to interrupt this joyous occasion but it is eleven o'clock and I do have to stop by the bank tomorrow so everyone off to bed now please." This was answered by a few playful complaints from my sister, mother, and I.

"Honestly, dad, I don't think I can sleep!" I exclaimed as I slipped the familiar ring onto my right ring finger. As I did so, however, the new diamond swiftly fell out of its new residence and unto the carpet. "Oh blast! Where did it go?"

"Genevieve, I'll have none of that language in this house, do I make myself clear?" my father warned as he too noticed that the small diamond had fallen out of its nest in my ring and unto the floor. He also went on to find it about two feet from the fireplace. "There you go," he said as he put the jewel back into its snug little hole in my ring but then it just fell out again. No matter how many times we tried to put it back in, it just seemed to fall out again.

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He had only one thing on his mind as he flew over the many rooftops of various cities, towns, and villages: revenge. Revenge on whom? Gabriel.

A slight smile played on his lips as the wind caught and grabbed at the few strands of loose jet-black hair.

"I shall have my revenge, Gabriel…you shall see…" He chuckled maliciously at the thought.

His reverie, however, was disturbed by his hunger which, until then, had been but a small thought, but had now grown to a great urge. Sighing in frustration at the inconvenience he spotted a gray stone house surrounded by various rose bushes and decided to feed there.

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I looked at my illuminated reflection in the mirror once more before I gently laid my ivory brush on the small vanity, put my treasured ring in its little rosewood box, and slipped under the soft, puffy covers.

I was so tired I didn't even care to loosen the bed curtains from their bondage on my bedposts. Instead, I closed my eyes and immersed myself in the surreal world that were my dreams.

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The rain continually bombarded the elegant glass French windows that spanned the whole wall. The lightning flickered periodically and temporarily cast a sharp white light unto the scene in front of me.

I quickly closed the door behind me and looked towards the blazing fireplace. I took one barefooted step forward and my foot slowly sunk into the plush carpet. Scenes continually flashed before me in rapid succession: A man covered in shadow, a frail but defiant-looking woman beside him, another man shrouded in mystery.

All the colors swirling around me, the smell of wood burning, my senses sharply piqued, I suddenly felt dizzy as well as nauseous. I staggered one more step forward before tripping. My hand shot out and grabbed unto a small rosewood side table before a brief flash of lightening illuminated the whole room.

I looked once more toward the fireplace and saw the flash of a dagger and heard a shriek of horror before I woke up breathless and with beads of sweat on my brow. 'Twas all but a dream.

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My eyes quickly darted around my room to make sure that everything was normal and as it should be. I reluctantly pulled myself loose of the feather-soft blankets and slowly got out of bed. I reached out for my robe, which was neatly folded on the small chair near my vanity, but then decided against it since I was only going to wash my face and then go back to bed.

I walked toward the basin halfway full of, by this time, cold water and gently splashed some unto my face and then gently dabbed it away with a towel. After putting the towel back to its rightful place, retrieving my ring from it's snug home, and slipping it unto my finger, I turned back to where my comfortable and inviting bed was clear across the room.

Halfway there I saw my sister's door, which joined my room to hers, slightly open and a slight wind coming in. The only way that this can happen is if she accidentally left a window open or the doors leading out into the balcony open, so I headed towards the door and poked my head into her room. Sure enough, she had left the balcony doors open and with a sigh I walked over to them.

As I get closer to the French doors, I stop for a minute and relish the soft, gentle breeze and how it tugs at my long hair, now undone from its tight bun, and how it plays with the lace on my nightgown. I resume my walk toward the balcony doors and look out at the star-filled ocean that was the sky, before I take hold of the cool, gold handles and give them a small push. I stop midway, however, when I hear something come from the corner of the room where the bed is.

I turn around and walk toward Alana's canopy bed, a cold foreboding gripping my heart. The palms of my hands are gently getting damp with sweat as my feet keep sinking in the plush carpet, toward the shadows that seem to inhabit that side of the room.

I suddenly see some slight movement in the shadows and my heart skips a beat before resuming its quick pace, pumping adrenaline throughout my whole body, sharpening my senses.

"Alana?" I whisper. There is no answer but the slow rhythmic breathing of my sister, and then suddenly I notice that there is another. If my ears hadn't tried to pick up anything unusual, I probably wouldn't have been able to notice.

My eyes dart throughout the room, trying to find a sharp or heavy object and making a note of where it was in case I needed to use it later.

My whole body is screaming for me to turn back, but something seems to be drawing me towards it. My heart rate quickens as I inch closer and closer towards the shadows, my sister, and whatever or whomever it might be that lurks in the dark protection of the shadows.

I close my eyes and walk forward until my foot hits one of the bed's posts. I take a deep breath and try to calm my breathing and fast beating heart before I take a peek toward the head of the bed.

The site I held made me gasp and want to go into a dead faint, but I resisted the urge to do so. Before me was my sister, soundly asleep on her soft bed, and beside her, a man with pale skin, clad in black from head to two, stooped over Alana's exposed neck.

A vampire.

I felt my knees give way under his gaze and I held unto the post until the strength finally came back.

"What…..what a..are you doing?" I mouth for I can't seem to produce a single sound.

He slowly stands up, making him taller and more menacing than before. He continued to look at me, his blue, cold gaze scrutinizing.

"Come here." He commanded, his rough Romanian accent cut through the silence and lulled me into a kind of stupor. I obeyed and slowly walked toward him in a semi-trancelike state. The wind, again, playing with my nightgown and making me seem like some sort of ghost along with the swirling white curtains. The moonlight also played with them, making them seem almost blue and giving them an eerie glow. I finally reached the place where he was and the moonlight touched my ring, refracting the light and making the room sparkle with dazzling green spots.

He then eyed the ring and seemed to be staring at it for a while before a slight glimmer came to his eye and then his gaze returned to my face. Again, I repeated, though with more strength, "What are you doing? What do you want with my sister?"

I smile played at his lips before he answered. "I would think that someone like you would know the answer to that…" He gave a small chuckle before stooping over my sister once more and closing the gap between his mouth and her neck.

Horrified, I took hold of his shoulder and tried to pull him away, only then realizing that he was about to drink Alana dry of all her blood. "Don't! Please no!" I scream. My wrist is then in his tight hold and he roughly grabs my chin making me look at him.

"And what, pray tell, do you advise we do?" he says calmly, though his tight hold on me says otherwise.

My mind then leaves through the many pages of information I have read over vampires and weaknesses they might have. I finally come up with a plan.

"A compromise!" I say slowly…trying to think of some other way out of this situation.

His eyes glimmer with interest as he loosens his hold.

"A compromise…..?" he whispers in my ear, sending shivers down my spine. "What kind of a compromise Miss Walker…."

"I propose a trade. My life, in exchange for my sister's" I voice weakly. I can feel my resolve slowly leaving and tears start to sting at the corner of my eyes as it finally dawns on me the gravity of my proposal and the death that will probably ensue. That death being mine.

"Ahhh…" he whispers again, his lips playing with me ear. "What a most noble plan that is Miss Walker, but are you truly willing to give your life up for your sister's?" He says this in an almost mocking tone, making me flare up with anger.

"Of course, I give my word of honor on it. If, of course, you give yours that no harm will befall her or any of my family." He slowly chews on this for a while before establishing complete eye contact with me.

"I give you my word. Though, you must also promise that you will not fight me and to accept the fate the awaits you."

My life flashes before my eyes as I see memories of when I was a child, playing in the garden, of my friends, of my family…

I return his blue-eyed gaze with a determined one of my own.

"I promise."

He smiles smugly and extends his right hand. I give him mine and gasp at how cold his hands are before we shake hands, sealing the deal. I close my eyes, expecting a sharp pain in my neck and the weakness that I knew would probably follow, but none came.

Instead, I feel his lips brush mine and give me a soft kiss. I open my eyes instantly, and in rage I put my hand back, ready to slap him for his insolence.

My hand, however, is caught midway by his stronger grip and I am instantly drowning in his angry and merciless gaze. My knees start to weaken and my head starts spinning as I hear his harsh voice ringing in my head. "I am your master now and you better remember the promise which you have committed yourself to! Fight me, and believe me when I say that a punishment will be carried out."

The image of Alana and I speaking the day before invades my fleeting thoughts as I remember the conversation we had and the advice she had told me. "Never seal a promise with a kiss, for that is the most binding, and usually the cause of someone's undoing." The image floats away and her voice slowly evaporates to a whisper as I succumb to the darkness and welcome unconsciousness.

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A/N part 2: whew! Chapter 3 is finally finished. This is, by far, the longest chapter. O the suspense, though. What does Dracula have in mind for Genevieve and what does Van Helsing have to do with any of this? The answers coming in the next chapter!

P.S.: Thanks again for all the reviews! They really do mean a lot. I hope that all of you enjoyed this chapter. -Please review.