Fair Warning

By: Kelsey Dihle

I stood alone on the balcony of the moon dorm overlooking the school grounds. The cool night breeze lifted my long dark hair and brought the scents of the silent forest to me. I needed to be alone, to think through things.

An ominous feeling had been with me for the past hours, it made me nervous and restless. I got this feeling often when a vision was coming but this was stronger…more intense and demanding attention. It had only been like this once before, when I had seen a terrible danger coming to Cross Academy…Shizuka-sama.

"Naomi?" I recognized Takuma Ichijo's easy voice. He laid a gentle hand on my shoulder, "You've been out here nearly an hour. Are you all right?" His arms encircled my waist and I turned to him. "Nothing, I'm fine," I tried to lie.

Takuma wasn't fooled. His voice was low in my ear, "There is something bothering you. You know you can tell me anything." His lips brushed the tip of my ear and the contact sent a shudder of desire through my body.

Giving in, I lifted my violet eyes to meet his green gaze. "I'm getting that ominous feeling again, but stronger than usual." I admitted.

"Like a vision coming?" he questioned.

"Yes, but stronger…more demanding…like when I saw Shizuka-sama coming."

I heard his sharp intake of breath and his arms tightened around me, pulling me gently into his chest. Knowing full well that I would need him there if it was that kind of vision again, Takuma said, "Then I will stay with you when you sleep if you wish, Naomi-chan."

I shook my head, "I don't think it's needed this time, but I'm sure you'll know if it is." Visions always made me weak and sick, but the one of Shizuka-sama had been worse. It had given everyone quite a scare. That vision had drained my strength enough so that I could not even stand without support.

"Then at least take my blood, Naomi. You will need the strength tonight." Takuma offered. He drew back and looked deeply into my violet eyes.

I shook my head stubbornly, "You need not sacrifice so much for my sake, Takuma-kun."

He chuckled softly, pulling me close again, "You are a stubborn one, Naomi Ishima."

The sudden scent of his blood took me by surprise and I pulled back, but not out of his arms. He had drawn his nail across the side of his neck, leaving a thin red line. The intoxicating smell crashed over me in waves and I found myself inching forward. Only once, I flicked out my tongue and hesitantly licked the growing red line.

"Go ahead, it's all right," Takuma encouraged.

Still hesitant, I pressed my lips to the small cut on his neck and let the sweet warm red liquid run into my mouth and down my throat. Takuma's arms gently wrapped around me and his voice was almost a whisper at my ear. "That's it, Naomi. Take as much as you need, di ski. (my love)"

I gently licked the cut once more to seal it before pulling back just enough to see his face.

"Hopefully that will give you enough strength to handle the vision," he murmured.

I laid my head on his shoulder and closed my eyes. In this moment, with Takuma's arms wrapped around me, I could forget the terrible dread I felt of going to sleep when daylight came.

I tossed and turned restlessly in the bed while nightmarish images flashed behind my closed lids.

There was so much blood…Rivers of it seemed to well up from the very ground itself. Terrified screams echoed around the entire academy grounds. An image of Yuuki Cross's bloodless mangled body flashed behind my closed eyes and then the mangled body of Kaname Kuran. A mass of people with glowing red eyes gathering at the academy gates…an army of Level E vampires. Hideous, derisive laughter rang in my ears and came with an image of cold eyes brimming with powerful bloodlust. One eye was blue, the other crimson…wait…I knew those terrifying eyes…

No, it couldn't be!

Rido Kuran-sama! He was Kaname's uncle and the one responsible for his parents' deaths. But how could he still be alive? I thought he'd been destroyed years ago. This was not good at all…if Rido was still alive…no one was safe…least of all Yuuki.

I jolted upright of the dream/vision gasping for breath. My head spun and my heart pounded so loud I was sure it could be heard from the next room. Pain lashed me with every breath and just before Takuma hurried in with Akatsuki Kain, I doubled over as my body convulsed in dry heaves.

Takuma's comforting arms came around me, pulling me into his chest. "Hush, Naomi-chan, it's all right, I'm here. Just breathe, di ski," he soothed, rocking me gently as if to calm a frightened child.

I took a few shaky deep breaths and fell limp in Takuma's arms.

Across the room Kain looked scared as hell as he watched. "Is she alright?" He spoke to Takuma as though I weren't there but he likely figured I would not have been able to answer and he was probably right.

My body trembled violently and fear threatened to suffocate me.

Takuma didn't answer Kain, but looked down at me with anxious eyes. "Naomi-chan, can you say what you saw?" he asked gently.

Fear threatened to choke off my voice but my will was stronger. "T-take me to Kaname-sama…He must here this first hand…No one will be safe " I managed.

Takuma looked at me carefully. "Once you have recovered from the vision. Now you must --"

"No, now…the danger is too close…he must know now!" I made an honest effort to get up but my strength failed me and I fell back against Takuma when a flash of pain ripped through my body. I felt hot tears of frustration in my eyes. Why couldn't they understand?

Kain's voice startled me, "I think she's serious, Ichijo."

They shared a grim look and then Takuma nodded once. He carefully lifted me from the bed and carried me through the halls of the silent Moon dorm.

As I'd guessed, Kaname Kuran was already waiting for us in the front room. He stood at the window with his back turned to us.

Takuma carefully set me down on the settee and sat next to me. He wrapped an arm around my still shaking shoulders, pulling me gently against him. Kaname-sama stood silently and without turning, he asked, "What did you see Naomi-san?"

My eyes went slightly unfocused as I remembered the terrifying vision. "No one will be safe…K-Kaname-sama…Yuuki…you must protect her…he comes…" Wrenching coughs seized my body then, cutting off my words. Blood sprayed from my mouth in the wretched coughs and Kain hurried to get towels.

When he returned, Takuma held the towels to my face and gently rubbed my back in attempt to stop the coughing. I sagged against him when the coughing finally ceased, no longer having the strength to hold myself up.

Kaname-sama, apparently concerned by the violent coughs now sat in the chair across from the settee facing us. "Naomi, can you tell who is causing the danger?" His voice sounded distant to my ringing ears, though he was barely four feet from me.

"The C-Council…working against you…K-Kaname-sama…he comes…Rido K-Kuran-sama." I barely managed these words through my hazed thoughts just before I lost consciousness.