A/N: I decided to combine the prologue and the first chapter together to make one new chapter. I hoep this will not confuse those who have read the story already
Disclaimer: I do not own Van Helsing or any of the characters. RATS!
It had been 5 years since Dracula was destroyed. Van Helsing had stayed in Transylvania with Anna (A/N-she never died). They had long since married and now were happily awaiting the birth of their first child. Carl had returned to the Vatican shortly after Dracula's demise. Gabriel and Anna had welcomed him to stay, but he graciously refused saying that he missed the solitude of his lab. With Dracula gone, life was finally returning to normal or was it? "Miss Valerious, a messenger just brought this for Gabriel." Beatrice said handing the small white envelope to her. She saw the message was from the Vatican. Anna could only imagine what the letter was about.
"Thank you Beatrice, I'll see that he gets this." Anna replied. With that she hurried out of the sitting room in search of her husband. However, Anna had a pretty good idea of where she would find him. With the baby's due date nearing, Gabriel spent most of his free time readying the nursery. He was so excited about becoming a father. As she made her way to the nursery, she remembered the day she told Gabriel that she was expecting a baby. Anna could not remember the last time she had seen Gabriel so happy or so excited. His whole life, he had no memories of ever having a family. Now at last he would have a family; a family that included her and their child. Finally she reached the nursery and just as she hypothesized, there was Gabriel, busily working to complete the crib he had started building yesterday.
"Anna, it's not polite to sneak up on someone." Gabriel said over the pounding of the hammer. She chuckled to herself as she entered the room.
"How did you know it was me?" Anna asked him. Putting down the hammer, he turned and looked at her.
"Because I know everything about you." Gabriel replied as he approached her. Taking his wife in his arms, they shared a long, passionate kiss.
"How's the baby today?" Gabriel asked Anna as he ran his hand over her swollen belly.
"Active." Anna said smiling.
"Was there something you needed me to do or get for you?" Gabriel asked.
"No there wasn't. Actually I came to give you this." Anna said as she held the envelope out to Gabriel.
"What's this?" he asked taking the envelope. As he turned it over to open the letter, he noticed the seal keeping the message bound together. It was the seal of the Order.
"Great." Gabriel mumbled as he proceeded to open the letter. What did the Order want this time? Probably another assignment he thought as he unfolded the letter. However, it was not an assignment; rather it was a letter from Carl.
"It's just a letter from Carl." Gabriel stated as he began to read the letter. Anna watched Gabriel's face suddenly grow grim.
"Gabriel, is everything alright?" Anna questioned with concern.
"He's dead." Gabriel replied.
"Who's dead?" Anna asked.
"Cardinal Jeannette." Gabriel answered. "Did you know him for the time you stayed at the Vatican?" Anna inquired. "I knew Cardinal Jeannette very well, very well indeed." Gabriel stated turning away form Anna to hide the grief that had started to take over him.
"Does that also mean..." Anna began. "Yes, he was the leader of the Order; the very Order that sent me on my assignments." Gabriel finished trying to hold back a lump forming in his throat. If she only knew how much more Cardinal Jeanette meant to him than simply as someone he worked for. Pushing his grief aside for a minute, he finished reading the rest of the letter. "Carl says that that the Order needs me to return to Rome as soon as I am able. There is a very important matter they need me to come there and settle." Gabriel said folding the note up and shoving it back in the envelope. "Do you think it will be another assignment?" Anna asked. Gabriel once again drew her into his arms. "Well if it is, I'll have to tell them they will have to send someone else." Gabriel said in a most serious voice. The next day, Gabriel and Anna prepared to leave for the Vatican. Gabriel had tried his best to persuade Anna not to come along on the trip. In her condition, he didn't want to take a chance of something happening between Transylvania and the Vatican. However, that argument was over even before it began. As a couple of the other servants loaded the carriage, Gabriel escorted Anna to the carriage and helped her inside. "Have a safe journey." Beatrice said as Gabriel climbed in. "Thank you." Anna replied as the footman closed the carriage door. With a snap of the reigns, Gabriel and Anna began their journey to the Vatican. Gabriel could only imagine what the Order was going to ask of him, but whatever it was, he vowed to have no part of it.
A/N: Sorry this is such a short chapter. I promise the next one will be longer.