LbN: Here's the Underworld winner! Happy reading!

Erika played with the pear-shaped, jade pendant at her throat as she paced the room. It had been four hours since Selene had left to track the Renegades that had been spotted. They were usually back in three, at the most. She jumped when a loud knock sounded at her door. "Come in!" she called.

Marianna, their nanny, poked her head in. "I've brought the little princess to say goodnight." She opened the door wider and stood to one side.

A girl who looked about seven years old raced inside and over to Erika. She had long hair the same shade of black as Selene's and Erika's green eyes. "Mama!" she yelled as she was scooped up into the blonde's arms.

"Alexia," Erika said, hugging her daughter closer. "How are you feeling? Better?"

"Yes, Mama. Much better," the girl said, nodding.

"All ready for bed?"

"Yes, Mama. Where's Mummy?" Alexia asked in the light British accent she'd gotten from her mother and nanny.

"She had to run an errand," Erika said. "She'll be back soon, but you need to get to bed."

"Do I have to?" Alexia whined.

"Yes," Erika said, smiling. "We'll have breakfast with you tomorrow morning, alright?"

"Okay." The little girl nodded and gave her mother a kiss. "Night Mama."

"Good night, Alexia," Erika said as her daughter wriggled away from her.

The little girl ran back to her nanny and waved as the two of them exited the room. Erika sat on the end of the bed, fiddling with her necklace again. She'd almost allowed the girl to stay with her that night, but she didn't know what state Selene would return in and didn't want her to see it if her other mom was hurt. She stood and paced the room a few more times before peeling off her lace jacket and tank top. She turned on the shower tap and finished undressing. Stepping into the scalding hot water, she tried to relax and not worry about her wife. It wasn't working. She finished her shower quickly and got out. Toweling dry and wrapping up in her dark green robe, she walked back into the bedroom to write. She'd been helping Tanus chronicle the years after Lucien and Viktor's deaths, and hadn't worked on it in a couple of days. She flipped the hourglass over and began to work.

The sand in the glass had almost completely drained when the bedroom door opened. Selene walked in, looking tired and slightly bruised. She had a bad cut above her right eyebrow that was healing slowly.

"Selene!" Erika said, guiding her injured wife to the bed. "What the hell happened?"

"Ambushed," Selene said tiredly. "We caught a couple of them. Soren and Khan are going to interrogate them tomorrow." She was still as Erika wiped the blood away from her brow. With the blonde's help, she changed into a soft tank top and sweat pants. She managed to only wince twice.

"It's been months since we've seen Renegade activity," Erika mumbled. "What are they playing at?"

"No idea. Come on, we need to rest."

The pair climbed into bed. Erika wrapped her arms around the Death Dealer.

"Did you see our daughter tonight?" Selene asked, relaxing in Erika's arms.

"She came in to say goodnight. I was going to let her stay, but I didn't know if you were going to come back alright or not."

"I should ch-check on her," Selene said, making to get out of bed.

"No you don't," Erika said firmly. "I've told her we'll have breakfast with her. You need to rest."

"Fine then," Selene said, smiling at her protective wife. She kissed the blonde on the lips and said, "Good night."

"Night, Selene."

*

Erika shot straight up in bed. As she looked over at the clock, which read 3 a.m. she felt Selene sit up next to her. The sounds of gun fire were impossible to ignore. "What's going on?"

"I don't know. Go to Alexia," Selene said, getting out of bed and throwing on a shirt. She grabbed a gun and looked back at Erika. "Go!" she insisted.

Erika nodded and threw on a robe. She left out of a concealed door next to the bed and ran down a narrow passageway. She exited another door into a large nursery. Marianna was already there, locking the main door. She glanced toward the bed and saw Alexia sitting up looking terrified. "Marianna, draw the curtains closed," she ordered, walking over to the child. "Don't worry, Lexi. Mummy's gone to sort out the trouble." She climbed into bed next to her and pulled the girl closer. "Marianna, lock the door to the other room and stay in here with us," she told the younger Vampire. Erika was surprised at how calm she was staying. She'd been through a few Renegade sieges before (once while she was pregnant), so she supposed she was used to it by now. She lay next to her daughter and tried to drift back to sleep through the sounds of shouting and bullets.

*

Erika's eyes snapped open as something banged against the door. Before she could move to hide, the door burst open. A Lycan fell through, with two of his un-morphed fellows following behind.

Alexia screamed and began to cry. Erika stood in front of her and Marianna, snarling at the intruders.

One kept a hand on the morphed Lycan's chain, while the other walked over to the three ladies. "Give us the child."

Erika's hand moved so fast it was a blur. She scratched the Lycan, leaving five deep gashes across his face.

He picked her up with a growl and threw her hard into the wall.

"Mama!" Alexia cried as the Lycan pushed her nanny aside and picked her up. "Mama!"

Erika lay unconscious on the floor.

*

Selene dispatched another Lycan and turned to look back at the mansion. Something was wrong. On the edge of her hearing, she could make out a voice crying out. She ran and jumped onto the balcony, then onto the roof. Fear stole over her as she saw two Lycans carrying her daughter away. A morphed Lycan was running in front of them, taking out the guards and guard dogs that were left after the struggle. "Kahn! Raize! East gate!" she yelled, and took off running. She jumped off the roof and kept running. She'd only gotten a few yards when something cannoned into her from the right. She flew a few feet and landed hard. Sitting up, she shot at the Lycan. It retreated, following the other three.

Kahn ran over, shooting at the retreating Lycan. "Selene, what happened?" he asked, as Raize helped her to her feet.

"They've…they've got Alexia…."

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