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The thought of killing someone made me stop right away. I hadn't even stopped that someone had already caught up with me. I could feel their harsh grip around my arms.
"Let go of me," I snarled. "It's okay! It's okay! Get off me!"
But they didn't listen. I tried to fight. I think I put up a good one because the minute after, I didn't feel their hands on me any longer. I had no idea, actually. But I could still hear them coming back for me. So I did what I thought was the right thing. I only focused on the noise they were making, so I could avoid their attacks because they wouldn't let me go. According to this Marcus, my brother wouldn't let me leave. Ever. Never. I was stuck here for the rest of my life, and that's not what I had expected. That's not what I thought would happen to me when Aro said he had found some sort of cure to my blindness. I still couldn't get over the fact that my brother had been playing me! I didn't know if my sister knew, but if she did, I was so going to rip her head off.
"It's okay," I heard someone say. "I'll handle her from here."
"But we've been told..." someone else said.
"Tell Aro to deal with me if he's unhappy." I recognized Marcus's voice. I was usually quite quick to catch up on people's voices, to know who was talking to me. It was sort of way easier to recognize Marcus's voice, and yet, I didn't really understand why. It just felt like I'd hear it everywhere, and recognize it anywhere.
"As long as the blame doesn't fall back on me, it's fine." I heard footstep walking away—actually lots of them. I counted in my head. One, two, three, four, five. There were at least five vampires—I still shivered whenever I thought of this single word—in the room, waiting to take me down. And they all left, but this one last vampire who I assumed was Marcus.
I stayed still as he came closer. "It's just me," he said.
He was about to say his name again, but I cut him off. "I know," I said. "I recognized your voice."
"Oh, you did? That's quite impressive," he admitted.
I smiled a little, a smile with no joy which I used too much. I felt Marcus's hand on my arm although I didn't feel any warmth. It was weird. It felt like I had someone's hand on my arm, and yet, that the hand didn't belong to someone who was alive—which was the case. But I had never felt anything like that before. It was scary, indeed, although I'd never say it aloud. I was too afraid of what Aro'd think of to make me love my new nature.
He took my hand and pulled me towards him. I wanted to resist, but finally let go. They'd catch up with me anyway. I'd find another way to escape … when they'd be asleep, or when they'd be busy. There must have been a way, and I would find it.
"Come with me," he said. "Come inside."
I didn't tell Marcus that I still wanted to feel the wind brushing my face and followed him inside. He closed the door behind me without letting go of my hand.
"You don't have to hold my hand," I told him. "I'll just follow you since I can hear you."
"Oh," Marcus said, and he dropped my hand. Once he did, I felt weird. Like … Like something was missing. The feeling stayed there, even if nothing was missing. I was still me … but dead. Well, I hoped that I was still me.
"It's okay," I said. "I'm used to it. People always think that blinds are unable to function. We just can't see; we're not handicapped. I can walk. I can talk. I can hear. I don't need you to baby me." I didn't actually mean to be this rude towards Marcus. It just kind of came out of my mouth like this. But it wasn't meant to hurt Marcus. It was meant to be a slap in the face for my brother. Yes, I would want to see again. Hell, I'd do a lot to see again. But I would have never gone as far as Aro. I didn't crave power. I didn't want power. He could have it all, for all I cared.
"I'm sorry," Marcus apologized. "I didn't mean for you to feel like this."
"Yeah! You should be sorry!" I snapped. "You should be sorry you didn't let them"—talking about whoever had wanted to control me—"kill me when they had the chance to. I'd feel a hell of a lot better if I were dead! Dead, and not … alive dead." I didn't get angry very often, but this was one time where I just couldn't hold back. It was just too much. I just felt like I needed to explode, that I was going to. I was just a huge bomb of feelings that I didn't want to feel. Best way to get them out: explode. "They thought I was going to kill someone! I'm not a murderer! I don't want to survive if it means taking away an innocent life! I despise you! You're an abomination that should have been extinguished years ago! You're all psycho! This isn't a life. You're all doomed. And you've condemned me, too! I'm a monster now because of you! You stayed still and watched! You could have done something! You should have done something!"
I probably would be crying if I only could, but it just seemed that I couldn't anymore. I'd miss the tears. At least, they made me feel alive, they made me feel like my eyes were useful to at least something. But now, if I couldn't even cry, what were these eyes even needed for? Nothing! Absolutely nothing! And they'd never be used again, thanks to this dearest brother of mine, although he wasn't so near my heart at that precise moment. If he'd been close, I'd probably have tried to have him murder. But of course, no one in his goddamn army would have followed my lead. So I would have been stuck against an army—I didn't know how many vampires were needed to call this an army—of vampires. One thing would be sure: I'd be dead. Maybe I should try to get Aro's head ripped off next time I saw him.
"I'm sorry," Marcus repeated.
"That's not what I want to hear," I snarled. "Knowing that you're sorry doesn't change anything, all right?"
I rolled my eyes—well, I tried, I don't really know if it worked. But that's how annoyed I was.
"I know. But there's nothing else that I can say." Even if he was right, I still couldn't let go of my anger.
"Why?" I whispered. "Why does everything just feels so …"
I nodded. "Yeah. It's exhausting."
"It's because you're angry."
"Bet I am," I snapped.
"Here," Marcus said. "Let me help you." I felt his body moving towards mine, and I didn't move, waiting to see what he was up to. "You should sit down."
I sighed and agreed. He led me to a chair and I think that he stayed right next to me. He wasn't touching me, but I could feel his presence right beside me. I didn't know why, but it was reassuring.
I was feeling better. As if I had succeed in shutting out the anger and the bitterness. That's when I noticed that Marcus was getting all shaky.
"What's going on?" I asked. I hadn't heard anything wrong. I didn't sense anything.
"I don't know," he admitted. "I feel weird."
"Weird … How weird?" I questioned. I'd feel weird, too, knowing that I was a vampire.
He started to laugh. "Light. I feel … good for once." There was something in his voice … that I quite couldn't understand.
That's when I realized that … I felt good, too. Usually, I felt good. I was optimist, normally. And now, it felt like the glass was half full instead of half empty. I didn't understand where all of the … sudden wave of well-being came from, but I only knew that I didn't want that to leave. Ever. Like I needed it. I really did if I wanted to get through this. If there was even a way to get through this.
"Oh, so she's gifted, after all." I heard my brother coming into the room. I'd recognize Aro's footstep everywhere. He had this way of walking … as if he owned the place. It was even more flagrant now that I seemed to have supersonic ears.
"Gifted? What do you mean? Isn't it normal for you to feel good?" I asked.
"Not like this," Aro said.
"What does that even mean?" I started to rage and to get angry. I didn't feel like playing little games any longer.
"I think you may be gifted. I should get one of my friend to approve," Aro said. It was as if he was thinking aloud. "I'll call Eleazar. He'll tell us what you can do."
I heard his footstep getting away—at an impressive speed. And I didn't even have time to open my mouth to ask more information about this Eleazar to Marcus, that Aro was back, with someone. Probably Eleazar.
"Tell me, my friend," Aro said, "if my sister's gifted or not."
I heard someone sighing in the room. It was an unknown voice, therefore I assumed it was Eleazar's. I could feel my entire body tensing up, but then, Marcus put one hand on my left arm, and I immediately relaxed. I had nothing to be afraid of; Marcus was right next to me.
"Hummm, that's interesting," Aro's friend said.
"Do you want to see, or shall I explain?" Eleazar wondered.
"Explain it to her," Aro ordered.
I heard footsteps getting closer to me, but not even once did Marcus take his hand off my arm.
"You've got this aura of happiness all around you," Eleazar explained. "I think that … If we step into your aura, the happiness thing will get to us."
Aro took a step closer. He was probably as close as Marcus when I heard him laughing. "Oh, I see what you mean. It's … totally fake, but feels real."
I heard him taking steps back until he stopped laughing. "Hum, her aura isn't that big."
"She can probably improve that," Eleazar said.
"Great," Aro said. "Sister, you'll have a lot of work to do."
And I didn't understand. My brother craved power. Why would he care about this gift that he seems to believe that I have?
"What? Why?" I asked.
"So that your aura can grow bigger." He didn't even bother to take the time to explain; he believed everything was just obvious. Well, it truly wasn't.
"Why would I do this?"
"Because I'm asking you to."
"What if I don't want to?"
Aro sighed. "I know that you will. I know you're angry with me, but I'm still your brother. And I was trying to do the right thing by you. I really believed that it would work, Didyme. And I'm sorry if you think that I used you because that's not true."
I looked at my brother, confused. I had always thought that this tone of voice that he was using right now meant that he was sincere. It was the one he had used when he had told me that he needed me to marry Javier because he wanted to be with the girl that he was with now. Only, now I wondered if he had been lying to me because he obviously seemed to be in love with that Sulplicia. But why would he lie to me? So he could have Javier by his side? But the man had nothing special. My brother was up to something, and I needed to find out what it was. He and I had always shared our deepest secrets. Why would it change now? I didn't like to feel like I was out. He'd always told me everything. Why wouldn't he, now?
"Tell me what you're up to, Aro," I said. "And I might reconsider."
"Didyme, you're not in any position to make a deal with me," he said. "I could rip your head off right now, and you know it." I felt my entire body tensing up. "But I won't. Because we stick together as one, always and forever, right, sister?"
I winced. I remembered him saying this to me when we were just kids. He said he'd never let me down. Was he going to, now? I didn't know what to think anymore. I didn't even know if I should be thinking about this.
"I suggest you don't try anything," Marcus said. "If you do so, she might rip your head off."
Now it was my turn to be confused. "Why?"
"Newborns are extremely strong," Marcus explained. "So you're stronger than any of us right now."
"But that won't help her," Aro snapped. "We're more than her, and she can't see."
"You know what, Aro?" I said. "Being blind has taught me a couple of things. I don't actually need to see you to know where you're standing."
"Only that I'm moving way faster now, sister. Can you keep up?" And as he said that, he started to run all over the room. I could still sense him, but it was so much more difficult to evaluate exactly where he was because as soon as I thought he was somewhere, he was gone. But it was also easier than I thought because it seemed that my senses were heightened. I only turned my head all around the room, spotting where he was even though he was gone the second after. I didn't know what the point in doing so was. I didn't understand why he wanted to test me, but I didn't have to think about it because I immediately felt him running toward me, and I stepped aside.
That's when I heard him laughing. "Nice job, sister."
"Does that mean that you won't kill me?" I said, sarcastically.
His laugh seemed louder. "I never wanted to kill you. You're my sister. We're family."
I sighed. "Yeah, we're family, and you kicked me into Javier's arms."
"That man loves you like crazy. You'll learn to love him."
"Aro," I snapped. "He's awful."
"Oh, he's been pretty nice around you for the last couple of months."
"Yeah, he told you that?" I let out a dry laugh. "We don't speak. I'm actually glad that I'm blind so I don't get to see his face."
"Oh, you wouldn't be disappointed. He's handsome. I'm sure you would've loved him."
I didn't even bother to answer. When Aro had something in mind, there was nothing that I could do to make him change his mind. And I was done wasting saliva on him. I was just done with him. Well, I wished I were. Because I'd never be done with my brother. He was right. We were family. And family stick together as one, always and forever. Maybe what he said was the truth. Maybe he really did that to me because he thought he was helping me. But he should've told me first, right? I didn't know. I didn't know anymore.
"Let's not talk about that matter, okay?" I sighed. I was feeling so overwhelmed that I didn't even feel like arguing with my brother. Knowing that he liked that a little too much made it easier for me to keep calm. Until he'd given me some good explanations, I'd behave.
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