The wind whipped across my face and Marcus flew through the cool, inky black night. His leathery wings made a thick flapping sound as his greyish form sliced through the sky, seeking Selene and the elusive Michael Corvin. Every now and then a few strands of my hair laced across Marcus' neck, which he ignored. A few weeks after we were married he had commented on the silkiness of my dark hair, and how he loved the cool feel of it on his skin. I supposed he had missed the sensation, since he wasn't complaining.

"Are they close?" I whispered, drawing my head closer to his.

"Yes," he said shortly, his eyes suddenly glimmering bright with excitement and anticipation.

"Marcus, please, you must not kill Selene," I reminded him. "She means a lot to me."

He looked at me then, but I held my ground. "And what if she attempts to kill me?"

I smiled slowly. "Then, my love, you have my blessing to dispatch the little bitch."

Marcus chuckled hoarsely and then kissed me fiercely. "No wonder I love you so much."

We both heard the sounds of gunfire and humans shouting.


My vampire eyesight allowed me to see the scene clearly: Selene was single-handedly dispatching a group of humans (who, based on the clothes they were wearing, were soldiers) without gravely hurting them. As soon as they were all disarmed, she hurried to a young man who was writhing on the ground.

"She has too much compassion for humans," Marcus hissed in disgust. "Though I'm not surprised, considering she fell in love with one."

"A hybrid. Just like you," I said. "Can you fight him my love? You might not have the strength."

Marcus growled, and I saw Selene whip her head up and spot us. She and the man, who I surmised to be Micheal Corvin, jumped to their feet and began running. Marcus dived down and gently released me, and we landed gracefully on the forest floor.

"Selene, sister," I cooed, smiling.

"Sophia." Selene was looking at me coldly, and I knew she no longer treated me as a sister.

"Dearest Selene, I'd love to chat with you some more, but my husband would want a word with you," I said coquettishly, stepping aside so that Marcus would be more prominent. Of course, given my husband's current appearance, he did so rather effortlessly.

As he advanced, I saw Selene raise a gun at him.

I hissed.

"You have been very busy," he said calmly, as if he were talking about the weather.

"If you are referring to the business with Kraven and Viktor, my lord, then yes, I have," Selene said, staring at Marcus warily, never lowering the gun.

"Viktor has deserved his fate many times over. And Kraven has reaped the rewards of his treachery. However..." Marcus' voice trailed off, but he still continued to advance. Behind her Michael was already backed against a huge boulder, although I could see he was steeling himself for an attack.

"A terrible business, the slaying of your family. Yet so much effort was used to conceal this matter from me. What do you suppose Viktor had to hide? Or perhaps, it is you Selene, as the last of your wretched family that has something to hide," Marcus intoned ominously, and I knew Selene knew what he was talking about.

Selene's family, most especially her father, was the one responsible for creating William's prison, and my father had her family murdered to keep its location a secret. However, he did not count on finding Selene, who resembled my sister.

Apparently my father did not learn his lesson centuries ago, when he ignored his gut feeling to kill Lucian.

Now Marcus needed Selene's blood to learn the location of William's grave, but I knew she wouldn't be so willing.

Just as I expected, Selene responded by firing the gun at Marcus, who dodged the bullets and slammed her against the boulder, causing her to drop the gun. Michael, who up to then had remained silent, swiftly picked up the gun and fired at Marcus.

With an angry wail I rammed against him, my fangs bared. "Learn your place, hybrid!"

I raked my nails against his cheek but saw the wounds heal almost instantaneously. Michael shoved me away; underestimating his strength he caused me to fly straight across the clearing and collide against the thick trunk of a tree. A sickening crack echoed through the area and Marcus howled with fury.

Although I was not hurt, Marcus rushed to my side, giving Michael and Selene enough time to run.

"Sophia!" he said, but I waved him away.

"Kill them both," I said, while squeezing his arm reassuringly. Marcus took one look at me before taking flight.

I did not know what happened between Selene and Marcus, but apparently she had defeated him, based on the blood and wounds on his body when he returned.

I had healed a few seconds after he left and had made my way onto a motorway. Every so often a vehicle drove by, but it wasn't long before a rather flashy car screeched to a halt beside me, the heavily tinted window rolling down of its own accord.
"Hey there gorgeous," a silky voice crooned from inside the car. "What are you doing here all alone on such a night?"

I smiled seductively and leaned forward, slightly exposing the curves of my breasts. I heard a sharp intake of breath and smiled a bit wider.

"I was looking for a ride, actually," I replied.

"Well hop in, I'll take you wherever you want to go," the voice rushed, eager and full of unbridled lust.

I made a move to go to the passenger side, but suddenly I grabbed the man by the scruff of his neck and flung him out the car. He barely had time to react before I buried my fangs deep in his throat.

Michael clutched the steering wheel of the truck, careful not to take his eyes off the road. After escaping the hybrid and hiding out in an old repair shop just off the main road, he and Selene were now on their way to visit Andreas Tanis, the historian of Viktor's coven.

"Who is she?" Michael asked while Selene reloaded her gun. "The woman with the hybrid."

Selene hesitated, looking out into the night. "She's Sophia, Viktor's younger daughter."

"He has a second daughter? But I didn't see her in Lucian's vision," Michael said.

"Sophia has kept to the shadows," Selene replied, and Michael could detect some sadness in her voice. "Viktor never really approved of her, although that changed when Sonja died. We were close, once."

"What changed?"

"She didn't tell me who killed my family. She knew it was her father, and yet she refused to tell me the truth."

Michael didn't want to pry into Selene's past, and yet Sophia intrigued him. The first time he saw her, he viewed her as someone who has had the rare privilege of being born to a powerful family and married to someone even more powerful, but who still seemed to carry the entire sorrows of the world in her eyes. Perhaps she was still searching for her father's approval or mourning for her sister's death, but Michael couldn't miss the sadness behind Sophia's eyes.

"Do you still love her?' Michael asked. "You said you were close once. Would there ever be a chance that the two of you would be friends again?"

Selene looked at him and shook her head. "We've gone too far, Michael. I fear we have wounded each other too much to be as we once were."

"She was my sister, Marcus. I treated her like my own flesh and blood, and how does she repay me? By allowing her lover to hurt you like this!" My blood boiled at the thought of that Michael Corvin raking his sharp claws on my husband's flesh. I was safely wrapped in Marcus' embrace, but I could smell and feel his blood.

His wounds were healing quickly, but my temper flared.

"I had thought to embrace her as a sister, but she seems determined to hold a grudge against me," I continued. "If that's the way she wants it, then so be it."

Marcus laughed thickly, pressing a kiss to my lips. I forgot my anger then, relishing the feel of his lips against mine and his tongue in my mouth. I gave a moan of delight, and wrapped my arms against his thick body.

We slept until twilight, when Marcus decided that it was time to pay Tanis a visit. I, however, felt that it was too soon for him rushing back out, and wheedled that he stay with me for a few hours.

"Tanis can wait," I told him seductively, as Marcus transformed to his normal form. "But your wife cannot."

Marcus grinned as I pulled him deeper into the dark recesses of our hideout, my hands quickly releasing him from the burden of his clothes.