Quickly swinging out of the carriage which was drawing him across the city, Aro swept over to the woman lying on one of the paths towards the castle. His cloak billowed around him as glided closer to the almost lifeless body.
She appeared to be about 27, and had pale skin. Her dark brown hair was fanned out about her angelic face on the hard stone. Something in him stirred and he suddenly felt the strangest urge to save her—if it wasn't too late.
He tried to pinpoint a heartbeat. There was one, but it was faint. He'd have to act quickly. Sweeping her into his arms as if she weighed less than a mere sheet of parchment, he waved the waiting horse-drawn carriage away. It was late, but he still wouldn't risk exposure. Not a chance.
He slipped into the shadows and did a quick sweep of the area to check if anyone was close enough to spot him. Satisfied, he pulled her closer to his cold chest, against his non-beating heart, and took off towards the castle.
The welcoming castle loomed in the distance, and he sped up slightly, getting the strange girl into the caste within minutes.
Taking her to his own bedchambers, he placed her carefully on the cot. Why vampires would need anything remotely similar to a bed was beside him at the moment.
Deciding that she was to be saved, he pressed his cold lips to her neck. The gush of blood was tempting, but he would be able to stop. He wouldn't live with himself if he didn't stop. He fought himself back from her, biting into his thumb as he watched her back arch into the air.
The horrid scream that made its way through her lips echoed through the darkness and he winced ever so slightly. He'd caused her pain, he was a real monster.
There was a sharp rap at the door and Aro mumbled a hurried, "come in," without turning to face the door and Demetrius shuffled in. "Master Aro, Master Caius had heard the screaming and is wondering what is going on up here."
"Tell Caius it is nothing to worry about and that I'll be up as soon as she awakens," Ari said, sweeping his hands along the woman's face. "Is that all?"
"No, Master. Mistress Sulpicia would like to know if you shall be joining her tonight," he replied.
"Please give her my fondest regards and tell her I shall not be joining her tonight. That will be all, Demetrius."
The young woman bolted upright the very minute the last thud of her heart stopped. Aro gave her a moment to gather her thoughts, or what was left of it anyways, before he spoke. "My name is Aro Volturi. Welcome to my home."
"Where are we? Are we still in Volterra?" she asked, turning to face him. Her eyes seemed anxious and very afraid, but her voice did not shake.
"Yes, we are still in Volterra. This is the castle," Aro explained. "What is your name?"
"Well, Catherine, as of now you shall be called Aurora. Would you like to look into the mirror?" Aro asked softly, helping the beauty from the cot. The venom hadn't changed much in her features, but her eyes had become more rounded and her lips fuller. Her cheekbones had become more pronounced and her face more rounded.
He led her to the oval mirror on the wall, and she gasped once she had seen her reflection. The crimson eyes in the mirror widened slightly, taking in their new colour.
"What has happened to me?" she demanded. "This is unnatural and strange and I demand that you bring me back to normal and put me back where you found me."
Aro couldn't help smiling at her reaction. Her blatant disregard was amusing; did she not know his status? "I found you dying and took you here. If you'd like, I can arrange for you to be put back there," he replied testily.
"What have you done to me? Why are my eyes such a shade of red?" she demanded, firing more questions at the dark haired man standing beside her, his own eyes a deeper shade of red.
"You are a vampire. Are you aware of the myths surrounding our kind?"
"Mistress Aurora? Master Aro requires your presence."
"Thank you, Demetri," the brunette replied, using the shortened form of the young vampire's name. "That will be all."
She placed the brush back on its spot on her dresser and grabbed her black cloak. She wrapped it around her shoulders, covering the dress she was wearing. It was a simple royal blue corset dress, with white lace trimmings. Aro had adored the colour on her.
She walked in silence to the library where she was bound to find Aro, and slid the heavy brass doors open as if they were weightless. She sure did enjoy the feeling of extreme strength, being able to move any and everything she had ever wanted.
Gliding into the room, she spotted Aro sitting in one of the armchairs in the corner, his wife seated in his lap; playing with loose strands of his black hair, which had been tucked behind his ear.
"Master Aro, you wished to see me?" she said, dropping into a curtsey. "Mistress Sulpicia," she nodded to Aro's mate.
"Aro, darling, I will excuse you two to conduct your business alone and catch up with Athenodora," Sulpicia excused herself. She shuffled quickly out of the room in search of her close friend.
"Aurora," he breathed, rising and gliding over to her. "How lovely to see you."
"As is lovely to see you, Master."
"Come and sit with me," he said, picking up her hand and pressing it to his cold lips. He led her over to the armchair and sat, pulling her into his lap.
"Is something troubling you, Master?" she inquired, looking into his crimson eyes.
"I was only thinking about this," he gestured to their intertwined hands, looking very intimate. "And what would happen if we were discovered…"
"Oh, but Master, if you don't mind me asking, weren't you planning on making this," she gestured to themselves as he had done, "official?"
"I was, but I'm waiting on the right opportunity to seal the deal with Sulpicia. We can't just allow her to leave the Volturi; I fear she already knows too much."
Aurora could feel the anger bubbling up inside her. She was tired of being someone's mistress, sneaking into his chambers in the middle of the night to sleep with Aro while his wife caught up with her friend was getting tiring. When would he stop taking her for granted?
"Master, I fear I cannot keep these pretences up much longer. I'm tired of being a Mistress, and I'm ready to be a mate," Aurora voiced, turning to fully face Aro.
"Don't worry, my love; this will all be official soon enough."
"Yes Master," she replied, standing. "Now, if you don't mind, I promised I'd help Heidi with her catch."
"Yes, of course. You may be on your way."
Volterra, Present Day
"The next morning, all that remained was the single white rose," Aro murmured.
A/N: I'm going to dedicate this one to Ellie; if it wasn't for her, I would have probably forgotten about this and not stumbled across it ever again… Thanks, Ellie.