AN: Wow! It's chapter three! I honestly, didn't think that I would update three chapters in a row, but look where we are! I hope you all are enjoying the story as much as I am!
At that time I didn't even know what the name of that flower was. I thought that I want to get closer to it, but that flower seemed like it didn't want me to get any closer…
A Rose By Any Other Name
Sumi looked at the three sleeping children in the large bed. She kissed each of their foreheads and silently told them goodbye. She walked over to the cradle and kissed the baby, Yuu's, forehead. She exited the cottage and looked up at the sky. The moon was at its peak in the sky.
She gently held the sapphire rose in her hands. Eisuke said that they would come for her soon. To tell the truth, Sumi was really quite scared. She had no idea what would happen to her. Would she be treated kindly? Or would she be this person's slave? She shivered greatly.
That was when she heard a voice: "Madame Sumi?"
She looked ahead at the woods to see the silhouette of a figure bathed in the light of the moon. She squinted as the figure approached her and soon the figure became quite clear. It was man with skin a pale as a new pearl. He was tall around six foot and had evenly-cut blonde hair that fell right on his shoulders. But those are not the only things Sumi noticed. The man also had a pair of black wings that were tucked behind his back. He walked straight up to her.
"Are… are you the master of the castle?" Sumi asked.
"No," replied the man, "I am the master's servant, Komai. I have come to escort you." He looked down at the rose in her hands. "You are indeed the girl I was sent to escort." He held out his hand. "Please, follow me."
Sumi timidly took the man's hand and followed him into the woods. When they entered the woods, a strong gust of wind came out of nowhere and the scenery sped pass around them. Before Sumi knew it they were before the gates of a large ominous castle.
"How did we get here so fast?" Sumi wondered out loud.
"Magic," Komai responded as he pushed opened the gates. The gates opened with a long creak.
"Magic?" Sumi repeated curiously as she walked down the long cobble-stoned driveway. They walked up to a large pair of double doors that seemed to open by themselves and the two of them walked inside the large entryway of the castle. The castle seemed to be very dark and dusty. The hallways were lined with only a few lit candles.
Komai led her up a flight of stairs to a landing where the flight of stairs split into two directions. Komai choose the left side quickly and led Sumi up this flight of stairs and down a long hallway. Finally he stopped at a door on their left. He opened the door and ushered her inside and into a bathroom.
Inside the bathroom was a large bathtub filled with bubbles and warm water. Komai ordered the maids to clean her up. The maids stripped Sumi of her clothing and put her into the bath, washing her hair and washing her body. When her bath was done and she was dried off, Komai brushed her hair and applied the right amount of make-up to her face. Then he put her into a corset and a pretty dress.
"There. You are all done." He told her. He handed her the rose and she took it. "Follow me, please, Madame Sumi." He said as he exited the room and into the hallway. He led her down the hallway until he stopped at a door on their right. He knocked twice. Then he opened the door, ushered Sumi inside, and shut the door, leaving Sumi in the room all by herself.
The room was dark with the only light coming from the fire in the fireplace and from the large window on the other side. Inside the room was a large bed, a couch in front of the fireplace, a large dresser, a small bedside table, and a chair next to the large window. There in the chair sat a tall being. He stood up once the door had clicked close.
"Good evening, Miss Sumi," he spoke to her; his voice scratchy as if it had been morphed.
"Go-Good evening," she replied.
"You are that traveler's sister. You have the rose." He noted.
"Yes, I'm really sorry about my brother's actions. Um, sir?"
"Yes," came the scratchy voice.
"Could you come closer? It's hard to see you in the dark."
The gentleman hesitated. "You wouldn't want to see me."
"But I do"––Sumi took a few steps closer to him––"I want to see your face. It's not very much fun if I can talk to you face to face."
"You, Miss Sumi, are beautiful, like that rose"––his talking stopped her from walking––"I am nothing in comparison. Those ugly thorns are better than me."
"You talk very depressingly, sir."
"When you live as long as I have without hope, you tend to think so," replied the gentleman.
Sumi walked closer to him, until she was only an arm's way away from him. She did not look up, but only at the ground. "Your rose, sir." She held out the sapphire rose and then she did look up. She gasped a little out of terror. He was horrid: long unkempt brown hair; fangs like a wolf's; big bushy eyebrows; piercing brown eyes; two brown, large, dog-like ears on top of his head; his hands large with long claw-like fingernails; a long, brown, wolf-like tail coming out from behind him.
He slowly reached out to take the rose from her and instead of taking the rose he gently grabbed her hand and pulled her close to him. She gasped. "What are you…?" His lips pressed against her in a sweet kiss.
He pulled back and kissed her neck. Then he pulled back once again, looking into her blue eyes. "The contact is bided. You are now a part of me and this castle." He bit his lip and looked away. Then he marched pass her, saying, "This is your room. I give you only two orders: one) you are to stay away from the west wing and two) you are to eat every meal with me. Good night." Then the door was closed.
She breathed in a shaky breath as she turned to face the door. She looked at her hand to notice that the sapphire rose was no longer there. Tears welled in her eyes as she tried to swallow the lump in her throat. She fell onto her bed and cried. She wanted to be with the children. She rather even be with Nozumo. She didn't want to be here with that monster.