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Chapter 5: The Light of Truth ...No not really Just a History Lesson
"Sometimes the threat of devastation is scarier than the deed. As werewolves, we have the remarkable ability to adapt, to persevere and rise from ruin. But the potential for evil, for betrayal and affliction, is often more harmful and the key to our undoing." -King Altair, werewolf elder.
"Wait, WHAT?!" I shrieked. Looking around the room, as if there would be one of those big advertising signs that you see on the freeway that told me all of the answers to questions.
"Bella, look at me." My dad said in a sternly.
I turned to look at him, but apparently I turned to quickly and I hit my head against the egde of the dresser by the bed.
"Ahck!" I grumbled. Dammit. I already have a massive head ache!
"You okay? God, your getting really banged up today, first the fall, and then this. Ouch." Drew said.
"Yeah, I'm fine. I fell?" I asked.I don't remember falling?
"Well you fainted, and as you fell to the ground you hit your head against a really big rock next to you, so it was a double whammy." Grace corrected.
Geez. Today couldn't get any worse could it.
Charlie cleared his throat, trying to regain my attention.
"You okay?" He asked.
He looked at me straight in the eye befor speaking. " What I am going to tell you is very important. Everything that is and is going to be said in this room shall not EVER be repeated. Understood?"
I nodded, hesitantly. Please tell me that this is not a prank, because I am definitely not in the mood for this.
"Okay, no interruptions."
I nodded again.
Charlie took a deep breath before continuing, he acted like he was confessing to a murder or something.
"My real name is Altair Volcration others call me King Nolan for the meaning of 'Champion' or 'Proud One' after I had lead the Revolution in 1547." Seeing my confused looked, he added," Since our history is very long and complex I will only mention this particular story as I go on. "
He sighed again and continued."There are three of us who rule the werewolf empire of Volcra: Nikolas, Admis, and I. We take turns ruling and each of us rules for at least a 500 years before the other takes over. While one rules, the rest of us hibernates, resting for the next half a millennia's rule. Though it is preferred, that is not always the case. For example, I am currently ruling, but then the Great War began and Admis was forced to awaken and help me, fight and rule as well as to see your birth. As of now our empire is in hiding." He said with a smile.
"I know you said no interruptions but, are you all related?" I asked, sheepishly.
My father only smiled." Yes, we are related. They are your uncles. I am the eldest, Admis is the second and Nikolas is the last. Unfortunately Nikolas, was not able to see your birth because of a severe injury he had during the Great War."
I turned and propped my pillows against the headboard of my bed before leaning against it. After finding a comfortable spot, I asked another question.
"Um, they know right?" Gesturing to Edward and the others.
"Yes they so."
"Ho-" I started.
"We'll get to that in a moment."
"Okay." I sighed.
"Shall I continue?"
"Uh, one more thing. Why are we in hiding?" I asked
"You see why later. Anything else?"
I shook my head and sighed. My father. King Nolan. Werewolf. Wow, this was all so new to me. I mean, the existence of vampires, Pah! That's nothing, but full blown werewolves, and me AND my father being one.
Now that's a completely different thing.
Hmm...I guess in a way, Hollywood did get something right.
"We were always at war with vampires, them being our natural enemies. The Volturi is the name of the ruling clan of vampires in Volterra, Italy."
"Oh, yes! I remember Edward mentioning them on my birthday!" I said excitedly, interrupting him, though wincing at the memory of my birthday.
He turned to Edward. "Edward, Is this true?"
"It was inevitable. She saw the portrait of them in Carlisle's study." Edward simply said.
Charlie sighed." Well discuss this later."
"What do you remember about them?" He asked me.
"Not much, just that their was a royal family of vampires." I replied.
"The Volturi clan consists of three rulers: Aro, who is the main leader, Marcus, and Caius as well as the their wives and the Guard. Out of the trio, only Aro is gifted. He But tension between us has gotten thicker and more aggressive after the death of Caius's wife, Athenadora. One of our kind, was, for the lack of a better term, furious with the way vampires treated us. In their eyes. we were nothing, scum, dirt, dogs. We were degraded into nothing more than slaves, mutts." He paused, anger clouded his features.
He took a deep breathe and continued.
"During the Revolt, this was during the beginning of Nikolas's rule in presumably in 1237, we were barely beginning to rebel against the vampire nation, and though we did not gain our independence until after the Revolution in 1547, we were starting to gradually break away from them."
"Wait, you got up early?" I asked, shocked.
He looked at me, confused. "What?"
"I mean, knowing you, your grouchy as heck if I wake you up early on your days off, I can only imagine how you would be like if I woke you up 190 years early during your 500 year rest. I feel bad for the person who did." I said.
Everyone in the room exploded out laughing.
"Okay, okay, on with the history lesson."
"It wasn't until the Battle of Charmintine in 1445, when we finally began to get it through the Volturi's thick prideful heads that we were more than a piece of meat. That we were intelligent, and humane, and at times brutal. That we were living things that had the right of ruling our own paths. It was Charmintine Pennticot who finally got them to see this, he was the general for the army at that time, he fought bravely and if it were not for him, we probably would not have made it this far."He said after a thoughtful pause,
"After I lead the Revolution,"He continued,with his chest puffed up with pride," and we gained independence from the Volturi in 1547, we had a period of tranquility, the Hundred Years of Peace. This period lasted until 1647, when the Great War began. "
My father paused, trying to find the easiest way to express his thought without confusing me.
"You see, there was this wolf named Drakkar, a very kindred spirit he was. But very stubborn, and vengeful. I guess for this particular wolf, it went deeper then freedom as it did for most of us. He was there since the beginning, and sadly, during the Battle of Charmintine his mate was killed. And for us wolves, we do not mate with just anyone. We go through what we call an imprint. Humans call it many things, Soul mate, True Love, etc, and rarely do they find it. But for our kind it goes beyond that. We not only mate for true love, but for genetic compatibility as well. It is because with our kind it is very hard to breed with one who is not similar by genetics, not by blood of course, but by the harmonious interlinks in our genetic make-up. And because of this strong bond, once you are mated, you are forever mated. And if your mate should die, then eventually you shall perish as well."
I gasped. That is so sad.
I thought about what he had said for a while before speaking.
"Is...is that why I..uh..reacted the way I did when Edward left?" I whispered softy, tears stinging my eyes.
"Yes, little one." My father mumbled, gently soothing my tears away with his loving caresses.
Edward grasped my hand. " I know that you believed me when I told you that I didn't love you. That I didn't what you," His musical voice broke at his words," But you need to understand that I will always love you, I didn't want to leave but in order to protect you I had to, it was an order. And I could not refuse. Physically and mentally."
"I-I don't understand." I asked, confused.
"Our imprints are physically and mentally bonded to each other...,"Grace said,"If..If I were to be separated from my Drew here, I don't think I would survive, especially not as long as you did. You are surprisingly strong for your age, and you haven't even experienced your first Moon yet. When we imprint, our mates are our everything, they are the air we breathe, the water we drink, they are our sustenance for life . And this is especially strong for your Edward."
My heart fluttered at the Your Edward part. I guess they heard it because everyone smiled at the sound, only Drew snickered.
I was about to ask why but was interrupted by husky voice.
"I see you've got her under your spell, eh, Lover Boy?" Drew commented.
Ah...Just what I needed, another Emmett.
"Shut up, Drew." Edward said.
"Aw..Lover Boy is embarrassed! Aw, don't be like dat. I mean, it is about time you found your self a girlfriend."
"Drew, Shut up. I'm warning you."
"I mean, god how long has it been, like what 3-" Drew started, but Edward interrupted him by tackling him down onto the wooden floor of my bedroom.
Grace and my father seemed completely oblivious to the wrestle match on the floor, though both had small smiles as if they were used to their friendly quarrels.
Hmm..you would think that Drew wouldn't be as strong as Edward, but I guess I was wrong. They seemed to be evenly matched, though it looked like Drew was wining this round.
He had Edward pinned to the floor on his stomach. Drew was kneeling over him with his left hand pushing his head into the wood of the floor and his left hand bound both Edward's wrists to his back. " He he! Drew Mason wins again! Ha ha, don't you know by now not to mess with me, little brother,eh?!"
"You know damn well that I'm holding back." Edward cornered.
"Then don't." Drew challenged.
"You asked for it." Edward said as he easily broke free from his grasp and twisted him to the ground and into the very same position Drew had him in.
"Well,"Drew huffed,"This is just a very easy headlock to escape from."
"Well, escape." Edward teased.
Drew paused for a moment before trying to wiggle out of Edward's grasp but failed to break free. Seeing this, Drew wiggled harder and more violently, and with no success, he let out a frustrated wail.
"Hahaha! I win! Hey, don't you know by now not to mess with me, big brother?" Edward teased.
"Okay. okay, I get it." Drew complained as Edward freed him from his deadly bonds.
"Twerp." He grumbled, shooting daggers all the while.
"Sore loser." Edward said loudly, not bothering to hide his amusement.
"Boys, we need to finish, here." My dad finally interceded their fight.
As Edward walked towards me and sat down in the rocking chair, I decided to ask him a very obvious question.
"Uh..Edward? Um..Are..How..uh...You and Drew are related right?"
Blush heated my cheeks.
Edward reached to caress my cheek. "Ah, how I have missed that, and ...yes. Drew is my elder brother. "
"Birth." Drew snickered.
"Ignore him. He is just a pest. Uh..I believe it would be best if we wait until Char-Altair," He corrected," finished telling you about the Great War."
My father cleared his throat, apparently to grab Drew and Grace's attention, they were kissing in the corner of the room despite there being three other people in the tiny room with them, completely unashamed of their actions.
Geez. Didn't take then long to get lip locked.
"If you do anything like that in here again, while we are here or otherwise, I going kick both of you out. Understand?" My father admonished them.
Drew only smile wickedly." Whatever you say, my Lord Altair."
"Enough with the sarcasm," He said, rolling his eyes." I get enough from John." He added mostly to himself.
"Okay, as I said earlier, the Rebelling Wolf was known as Drakkar Helvic. A Russian nomad who had disappeared after the Battle of Charmintine. But back then no one new why, so when he returned, his family -or what was left of them- rejoiced, having had their long lost brethren home. "
"So who is ruling at this time?" I asked confused.
"Nikolas. Nikolas has been ruling this whole time, from the uprising to the War of Akelema in 1738, a year after the beginning of my reign. Though Admis awake now, his reign doesn't begin until around 2238."
"Anymore confusion?" My dad asked.
"Nope." I said, sheepishly.
"According to the Guard - it is basically an army specifically for the protection of the Royal Family and servants-, Drakkar had being acting rather strange, he was seen sneaking around the castle which was at the time in Northern Romania, Nikolas was away in Northern Europe and was not aware of the situation until word reached him weeks later after the suspicions began. He was naturally very suspicious of Drakkar and had ordered an Eye, it is what we call a spy, to watch him. But by then it was too late. When the Eye arrived at his home and saw that he was nowhere to be seen, he broke into his home and discovered multiple illustrations of the Volturi's dwelling and feeding grounds and had found that Drakkar was on his way to assassinate Cauis's wife, Athenadora. Drakkar believed very strongly in the phrase, 'An eye for an eye', thus the reason why he committed the assassination. We sent the Guard after them but it was too late. He had already been killed, but not before destroying Athenadora. "
He sighed, his chocolate eyes centuries away. Sadness decorated my noble father's face, I never noticed before but even though my father, or Charlie Swan was supposed to be 35 years old, he had a timeless face. Only his eyes exposed his true age, and centuries of wisdom.
"We tried to negotiate with them but nothing worked, the Great War was inevitable. Volturi wanted nothing to do with us now, all they wanted is our deaths, our extinction. All promises and compromises were disregarded and broken. The century of peace had ended and the war had begun. Ever since it started in 1647, it was the focus of everything. Our children were dying, our mates were dying, we were being prosecuted by werewolf hunters and deranged priests and clergymen. It seemed like everything bad that could happen to us, did, ensuring our destruction. And then just when things couldn't get worse, the Great Betrayal occurred. This was what truly destroyed us."
My father drew a shaky breathe, tears ran down his pale cheeks.
"Aleron Mason, the son of Edmund and Evelyn Mason, brother of Edward Senior Mason and uncle of Edward Anthony Mason. He was a good man, had a heart of gold. But then when our nation fell, he became desperate and betrayed our kind to preserve his own life and for the promise of riches and power. Aleron became power hungry, and wanted sole power over Volcra. He believed that we were not doing a good job of ruling and that he would do better. He betrayed me, by kidnapping my first born, Elena- she would be your older sister- and sacrificing her to the Volturi as tribute for Athenadora. During this time, the Lamia, was another threat, though not as significant as the Volturi, they are a lower class breed of vampires, who like in the books, perish in sunlight. They hated us because when the Volturi declared war on us they did so on them as well thinking that we were allies. The Lamina felt the repercussions of the Volturi's anger, and blamed us for it. When Aleron betrayed us, we were in a very fragile state, we only had each other and each others loyalties but when someone so well known for his good heart and someone so loved betrayed us, we lost hope in each other and started to fight amongst each other. Uncles and nephews, fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, brothers and sisters, and eventually husbands and wives. Loyalty is one of the most valued customs in our kind. If it is broken so is our nation."
"What! No!" I exclaimed, abruptly standing on my bed, surprising both my father and Edward.
"We need to fight back, we need to fight. We can't just sit here doing nothing!" I ranted as I walked to the edge of my bed.
"We have to do som-" I was saying as I attempted to plop down on the mattress but instead I successfully managed to trip and fall of the edge. But luckily Edward was there to catch me.
"Are you okay?" Grace asked.
"Yeah," I huffed.
"You really are a daughter of Altair." Edward chuckled.
"She definitely is. She has a heart of gold, the spirit of love, and as graceful as a black bear cub." Drew said.
"Shut up." I mumbled as I glared at him, I get him back, one way or another. May be I can get Edward to hit him.
But thankfully,Grace beat me to it and smacked the back of his head.
"Ow! What was that for?"
She smacked him again.
"Okay, okay, I get it."
She smacked him again, but harder.
"Ahh...okay. okay..I'm sorry I made fun of you Bella."
I loved her already.
"Thanks, Grace." Edward, 'Charlie', and I said in unison.
Edward was standing next to me and I felt him wrap his arm around my waist and drag me back to the bed.
"So Volcra..is ...gone?" I choked out, sadness gripped me on to me, making it hard to breathe.
"No. But they don't know that." My father said, slyly.
"Who doesn't know?"
"The Volturi. They don't that we are still here. They think that the empire of Volcra is gone and that only a few werewolf nomads are roaming here and there. As of now, the only threat we have is mainly Aleron and his rebelling forces. After the supposed 'fall' of Volcra, we reconciled with the Lamia and we are now allies. The Lamia helps us by keeping us hidden. We have built the Webs,an underground network of command posts and tunnels that are served as quick and easy transportation routes in and out of Italy and our old home in Romania- though no one uses the Romanian route anymore because the Volturi may have spies there-as well as all over the U.S, parts of England, and Northern Europe. " Charlie said, proud at Volcra's secrecy. "The Spiders, as we call them, are the messengers that travel in and out of these tunnels. Carrying information from the Eyes on the Volturi's actions, whereabouts, and plans."
"Wait, we have Eyes on the Volturi?" I asked, incredulous.
"Yes and we also have some in the Volutri. Some of which have been there for centuries." My father said, proudly.
"Without being discovered? How?" I asked, shocked.
"Yes, we have what we call a Pusher,they are werewolves or vampires that have the ability to absorb, erase, and plant false memories into their target in a matter of seconds with no physical contact necessary. The Pushers have a mental connection with each of their Eyes and if Aro decides to touch any of them a Pusher inserts a false memory or idea in their head. We use our Shields to protect their minds and their memories from Aro, so he will never find out who they really are."
"Do we have any werewolves in there, no never. Only Daywalkers, vampires like Edward and the Cullens. We also have Lamian vampires in Volterra posing as humans but we are sure to keep them at a safe distance." My father informed me.
"Wow. Your organized."
"Yes. Ever since the Battle of Myaak, the Declaration of Aleron, and the Pathos Treaty, we have begun to grow stronger and stronger." My father commented, looking at Edward.
"Why is that?" I asked, curious about the small unspoken communication between my father and my imprint.
"I guess its Edward's turn to give the history lesson. Let's just hope his head doesn't get to big. I'll be back." Drew said as left the room.
"What was that all about?" I asked confused.
"He has problems, ignore him." Edward sighed.
"Okay, NOW will you please give me some explanations because I'm tired of waiting and I need to know why,.. how you, a vampire, is a werewolf?!" I said exasperated.
"Well, it began like this..."
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