Heartstrings is the third chapter in my Blade trilogy.

I don't own any of the characters except for Meg and a few others. Blade, the Nightstalkers, etc. etc. do not belong to me.


Prologue

"Get back! Abby, it's a trap!"

But she wasn't listening. She swung the light arc as though it weighed nothing. Slashing through vampires with each stroke. A tight spin and she carved ash and fire through three more.

Somewhere ahead of them was the room that held Meg. It had taken her two hours to reach here. Her clothes were covered in ash, there was no escaping it as she slogged her way through vampires. Her own blood oozed in places where the vampires had found a way through her guard to score her skin. She didn't feel it, she didn't feel any of it.

Her mind was focused on one thing. Kill Meg.

Abby wouldn't have admitted to anyone why this was suddenly the most imperative thing in her world. She could barely admit it to herself. She'd seen Hannibal through the glass windows of his room, unconscious and barely alive. She saw the scars that he would bear for the rest of his life as the doctor whispered platitudes and sympathy to her. He wasn't allowed to die and leave her alone, and yet he'd come so close.

It was Meg's fault. Everything was her fault. The woman had been a disruption from the minute Abby first saw her and realized that she was the same woman her father had wanted dead. It was a short step before his death too, became something she could attribute to Meg. The circumstances never mattered, Meg had always kept some of the vampire inside of her, and that was unforgivable.

She took the brunt of a blow across one forearm and ducked a whistling blow aimed at her forehead. The light arc folded tight against her back and she pulled two long silver-tainted blades.

"ABBY!" Blade shouted again but she ignored him.

He was almost thirty yards behind her. Even his vaunted fighting skills couldn't keep him up with the sudden sheer determination that drove her.

Her foot snaked out and she heel swept a vamp. The woman fell and Abby followed her down with a blade in hand. Her focus dropped.

The blow knocked her off her feet and sent her sprawling through the ash of her last vampire.

She tried to roll away and moved straight into a large booted foot. It knocked the air out of her lungs and broke a few ribs. Abby hurt too much to care how many.

One blade was lost and the other trapped underneath her. Abby went for the pistol in the holster. A very large knife drove through the flesh of her hand, pinning it to her thigh.

"Blade!" She cried out.

"Blade's busy, darling." Came the husky voice.

She fought to pull the blade out and almost screamed with the pain of it. The vamp above her was big. He grinned again and twisted the hilt to make her whimper.

"Where is she?" Abby quit trying to get her pistol and reached for the small vial. All it needed was to be released into the atmosphere. "Where's Meg?"

"See, my girl." He said to her as he examined her carefully. "The boss has declared you and Blade persona non grata."

A bellow of rage comes from behind them and Abby smiled. Blade. He was coming.

The vampire shrugged sadly and turned back to her. "Here I thought we'd get some time together."

Abby crushed the vial against her, not even noticing the new streams of blood from the glass. She's done what she came to do.

He turned a large bore pistol on her and her eyes widened in horror as he said. "She's not even here."

The gunshot ended everything.