This was it. I knew I was going to die. There would be no one to save me this time.

The darkness was threatening to pull me under and I wanted to just give up and let it take me. But Raidyn wouldn't let me go.

"No! Stay with me, Seph. Please stay with me," he begged. He held me in his arms rocked me back and forth. I had no idea where Blane and the others had gone or why they left. "Don't die on me."

"You have to do it." That was Shayne.

"I can't," Raidyn said, voice trembling. "Not without her permission."

"I'm giving you permission. Now, do it!" Shayne ordered.

I was so out of it that I had absolutely no idea what they were talking about. Not until Raidyn pushed my chin back, exposing my bare neck.

"N-No," I gasped.

He acted as if I hadn't spoken and sank his fangs into my skin. I didn't have the energy to fight him off and with the more blood he took, the weaker I grew.

"S-St…Stop," I whispered, my voice barely audible.

Suddenly, his wrist was at my mouth. I felt something wet dripping onto my tongue. The darkness was pulling at me stronger than ever and I gave in. I let the darkness suck me under.

Then the pain started. My eyes shot open as a searing, burning pain started deep in my core. I felt something tug on my chest but that pain was quickly overtaken by the fire in my stomach. I screamed and writhed as the fire spread throughout my body. It felt like I was burning alive yet no flames licked at my skin. I was sure that I was in Hell because surely such pain couldn't exist in Heaven.

"What's happening to her?" Someone asked.

"Calm down. She's changing. She's going through the same pain you did; the same pain we all did." Someone else answered.

It seemed like hours later when the fiery pain started ebb. The pain had started in my stomach and had made its way throughout my entire body. It was now leaving through my fingertips and the tips of my toes. It was a slow process but the pain was leaving.

I lay there, unmoving as the pain subsided completely. I opened my eyes and Raidyn's face came into view, his expression blank.

"How do you feel?" he asked.

I stared at him for a moment before answering. "Weird," I muttered. "What did you do?"

"I saved your life so you can kill Blane," he replied almost immediately.

I sat up slowly, glared at Shayne and Raidyn and then glanced around at the dead bodies that lay around the small room. Kaige was among them. I felt little remorse about what had happened to him. I didn't feel anything toward Shayne about killing his own brother. In fact, I didn't feel anything toward him at all.

I let Raidyn help me stand. "Where's Blane?"

"You should feed first," Raidyn said.

"Where's Blane?" I repeated, ignoring him.

"I really think—"

"I am not going to ask again."

"Persephany, listen to Raidyn," Shayne said.

I glared at him. "You shut up and stay away from me." Without another word, I strode out of the room with Raidyn at my heels.

We found Blane in the garden, facing the woods, his back to us as we approached.

"Even as a vampire you're not powerful enough to kill me," he said without turning to look at me. Raidyn hung back as I continued to approach Blane.

"Why not? You did not bind my powers. And now my powers will be even stronger than they were when I was human," I said.

He chuckled. "But you didn't really know the full extent of your powers then, so what makes you so sure you know how to use them now?"

"Because I never got to use them on something I truly hate; I never go to use them on you," I said.

He turned and that smile was still plastered on his face. He was completely unfazed by my threats. I didn't expect him to react at all really.

He lunged at me and caught me around the throat. I yelled and pushed at him, but he was hundreds of years older than me which meant he was way stronger than me. He applied a slight pressure and knew he was going to crush my windpipe. It wouldn't kill me, but it would be extremely painful. I shoved at his shoulders and he only applied more pressure. I heard a loud crack and felt a pain I had never felt before. Being a vampire, I didn't need to breathe; it was just an uncomfortable feeling. I was already healing.

He let up a tiny bit and I took the opportunity to throw him a short distance away. I had a strange feeling in the pit of my stomach. I instinctively knew that dawn was coming.

"Persephany, we have to get out of here," Raidyn yelled.

I ignored him and drew on my magic. I conjured a bow and silver tipped arrows. I armed myself and shot arrow after arrow after arrow into Blane's body. But no matter how many I shot at him, he still kept on coming. I backed away but he was suddenly there. He pulled a bloody arrow out of his chest and shoved it into my side. I cried out in pain and collapsed. I had no idea why the silver was affecting me more than it was affecting Blane. But then it made sense since he was older and had had more time to grow immunity to silver.

The sun began to rise over the horizon. I tried to crawl away toward Raidyn; I had to get out of the rising sun. Blane grabbed my ankle and pulled me back. The sun was rising higher and higher. My skin began to smoke and I began to feel the same fire that I'd felt when being turned. The pain was almost unbearable.

Blane released my ankle and started screaming. I glanced back and saw that he was actually on fire. Being older had its downsides. One of which was burning to a crisp quicker than newborn vampires.

"Raidyn!" I called. No answer. I looked around but couldn't find him anywhere. The pain was getting worse and I feared that I would burst into flames at any moment. Blane's screams were growing quieter until finally I heard nothing but silence.

"Raidyn!" I croaked again.


That was not Raidyn's voice.

"Persephany." The voice was closer now. I couldn't move to acknowledge that I'd heard him. "Oh my, God, Persephany."

"James?" I mumbled. How did he find me and how the hell did he get here?

He slid his arms under me and the ground disappeared. I knew the instant I was out of the sun. But even I knew that I wouldn't heal from this.

"What happened to you?" James asked.

"She's a vampire," Raidyn said from the shadows.

"Why would you do this to her?"

"She was dying."

"She's dying now."

"Yes" was Raidyn's response.

"What can I do?"


"There has to be something that I can do."

"James," I rasped.

"You're going to be okay. Everything is going to be ok," he said, voice trembling.

"Let me go," I whispered.

"Listen to her, James," Raidyn said gravely. He knew there was nothing that could be done. He was hurting just as much as James was, probably worse.

"I can't. I love her," James said and I could hear the tears in his voice.

"Then let me go," I said.

It was almost painless. I actually felt better than I had in a long time. I had no idea where I would end up but I had a feeling it would be somewhere nice. I closed my eyes and let my soul move on to a better place.