Chapter 61- Vengeance

A/N- Thank god, I watched Ghouls Rule last night. XD So there were originally going to be six more chapters of filler and thickening plot...but I think I'll be good to you guys now and throw in the plot twists now that I've seen what I needed to see. ^^

"She did that. That little human tramp," Gory growled. Toralei rolled her eyes, leaning into Heath. The fire elemental glanced to his best friend and her mate across the room. Abbey glared silently at the vampiress, the look in her eyes downright hateful, and Romulus was backing her completely.

"How do you even know she did anything?" Gil asked, rubbing Lagoona's arm. They were all gathered in his basement while his aunt and uncle conversed with hers about temporarily staying there.

"A human comes to our side of town and all of a sudden, things are going wrong. Who do you think did it?! The tooth fairy? Ghoulia?!"

"It doesn't matter who did what," Cleo said as she walked down the stairs in her gold silk pajamas, "Lillie is staying at my home, so she's under my protection. If you touch her, I'll stake you."

"What kind of a sparkling wuss do I look like to you?" Gory growled.

"Let's be honest with ourselves, who wouldn't that kill?" Heath said.

"Shut up, Heath," both females snapped.

"Is first intelligent thing he say," Abbey said nonchalantly.

Andy got off the wall and walked out. Valentine scowled wholeheartedly, Kate seated beside him and watching with a quietly contemplative expression.

"So we don't kill her, what then?" he spoke up, "She'll try to kill us again. Worst we can do is be right, the best is be wrong."

"I don't follow," Gory said. Their dynamic had changed and I noticed right away. They respected each other.

"Talk to her. If we're right...we kill her. If we're wrong-"

"Nobody's killing anybody! Goddamn it, will you listen to yourselves?!" Cleo shouted over him, "You're no better than the humans!"

"We are human!" Gory snapped, "Go back up onto your little cloud where you're the queen goddess and nothing that happens to the peasants effects you!"

"Peasants," Toralei muttered, "You sound like Nefera's blog."

"Nefera blogs?" Heath asked.

"SHUT UP ABOUT THE BLOG. SHUT UP IN GENERAL," Cleo screamed, finally losing her precious cool, "This girl is alone in the world! Her mother is a bitch, her father's dead, she has no family! She has me! She has Nefera and Manu! We're her family now!"

"Your sister's child is one of them. Did it ever occur to you that she might just be there to be close to it?"

"Adam wouldn't let any harm come to Nefera. She is his mother. And Lillie is our friend. That's all."

Clawd looked at me. I refused to speak. This wasn't their fight. Things had gotten personal, and that made it mine. Not my father's, mine. Quietly, I slipped out of the room and walked up the stairs. I could hear Coral in the adjoining den, sobbing softly. Clawrk offered to do the repairs without charge. Her morale wouldn't let her accept that. I sighed and walked out. I knew where I was headed and I made no effort to hide it.

I slid past the gates of the De Nile mansion and walked up the drive.

...

Sometimes, the memory didn't live up to the experience. Her fingers were tangled in Andy's hair. Breathless, eyes glimmering with absolute love, she kissed him over and over, not minding that the wound from his biting hadn't stopped bleeding yet. He kissed her lower lip and gently ran his tongue against it, trying to seal the wound. A smile crossed his face while his fingers brushed her cheeks, catching the stray tears, "God I love you."

"Be careful where you put your heart," Lilith breathed against his lips, "You don't mean that and I know it."

"I mean it as much as I can," he murmured, "Need me to prove it again?"

She sobbed and wound her arms around his neck, clinging to him. It was so unfair. It was so unfair that he was a monster and she was a human, because he would've been the perfect boy for her. It was unfair that he loved someone else more than he would ever love her. It was unfair that she was put in the position her life had put her in at all; subcategories involving have someone to compare him to and hunting his kind crossing her mind. What she thought was the most unfair was that she was going to do this and end up dead, and he was going to blame himself. But the last thing she wanted to do was let him hurt himself for her.

"I'm sorry," she whispered. He knew why.

"You aren't the first human girl I've loved, you know. But I hope you'll be the last."

She held his jaw and brought his tender lips back to hers. The limbo between euphoria and agony was where she lingered. Her heart was in Andy's hands now; her will had nothing to say on the matter. Her muscles ached and tingled from the release of years' worth of tension. Gently, he shifted to his side and rested his arm under her head. She curled into a ball, wrapped in the safety of him, "I think I love you."

"You don't mean that and I know it," he quoted.

For a few hours, she slept soundly. But eventually, she knew he'd left. She told him not to stay-that way it hurt less if he really wanted to go. She'd just never know if he would've stayed or left. The dream began as it usually began, but there was a new player. It was dangerous the way her feelings for Andy had grown so deeply so quickly. Dangerous to them both. "It's always better to be with one of your own. Another hunter will understand when things can't continue. It's safer to be alone than to risk your heart."

Her eyes snapped open. She half expected her mother to be right there, but she wasn't. Her entire body trembled. She rose and walked into the adjoining bathroom, locking the door and running her fingers through her hair in front of the mirror.

"Do you have any idea what you're doing?" she asked herself, "Sleeping with the enemy, literally. Loving him. Goddamn it, it's not fair to you, or him, or anyone. You're here to do your duty and probably die, don't you realize that? Or hasn't it sunk in, because you're not dead yet and you've done plenty of crazy things before." She studied herself. "He loves Kate. He wants her. You're not the first, but you'll be the last because when this is done, he'll have her. It would be so much easier if he were here...wouldn't it? Then you'd have someone to talk to. Someone to reason with. Mom was the one who always treated you like a child, not Dad. He might be a zealot, but he's not unreasonable...but if Dad were here, you'd never be here, would you? You wouldn't have spared her, would you? Or Adam...or Andy. Jesus Christ, I'm losing my mind. I'm talking to myself."

She dressed and washed up, gazing at herself the entire time. The pain that tinged her chest made her whole in a hollow way. She reentered the room. A door creaked below. It was time and she knew it. She withdrew a short, sharp dagger and slid it into her belt, pulling her shirt down over it.

...

I waited for her. This was going to end here and now, whether Cleo liked it or not. Quietly, boots hit the floor. She appeared at the top of the stairs and slowly began her ascent, less like a hunter and more like a debutante entering an elite ball. Even with her hair pulled back so tight it was straight, she was still beautiful. Full lips, a high-cheekboned face, she was like the subject of my aunt's portraits. For a heartbeat, it actually hurt me to do this. But things had changed now. Pacifism wasn't the only option-not when I had a family to protect, and I let it go on long enough. I let everything go on long enough. I might as well have been Hamlet, as Valentine would've probably quipped, it took me five damn acts long enough. I stepped out behind her and reached for her. She spun on her heel and swiped. I ducked back and struck out, catching her knees. She tumbled and rolled. Gone was the Lilith I saw smiling with Andy. The girl before me was purely a Van Helscream; a hunter, born and bred. A murderer by blood.

Guess we had more in common than I'd thought.

I shifted into an attack stance and hissed at her. A flicker of emotion crossed her eyes, but like a summer breeze, it was gone. She struck out and I grabbed her wrist. It snapped like a twig in my grip. She didn't cry out, she hardly even grit her teeth. I did cry out as I felt a blade slam into my back. My head snapped forward and slammed into hers. She dropped like a weight, clutching her forehead, whimpering that time. Anger made my chest burn. I kicked her in the face and took satisfaction at splitting her lip. She grabbed my ankle and swung herself upward, taking out my knees and twisting the blade in my back. I grabbed her other and jerked backward. She barely dodged, the swipe cutting cloth and skin, but not doing real damage. Her blood reached my senses. Everything became hypersensitive. I grabbed her around her pale neck and tugged her forward over my shoulder. She grabbed onto my arm, kicking and struggling like a little fish in a net. Saliva was dripping off my fangs. It was instinct. I was stronger. Faster. Superior. I had her-my prey-in my grip, and I was going to kill her.

"Draculaura!"

I paused. She yanked at my arm, choking and gasping for air. Slowly, I raised my eyes to Deuce. He stood firmly in the door, for once standing up to something, "Let go. She can't breathe."

"What do I care?" My voice sounded demonic.

"I've known you my whole life. You do." His tone had softened. I let go. Lilith fell to the marble floor, gasping and coughing, desperately taking air into her frail human lungs. Nothing would've brought me more satisfaction than to take both blades and cut out her heart. But Deuce went to her and pulled her up by her arm, holding firmly, "Come with me."

I took the other and followed silently, "This better be a good idea."

"If you need to eat a squirrel or something, I'm sure I can hold on to her."

I gave him a look, "How could I hurt something that never hurt me?"

He rolled his eyes behind his glasses, "Nothing ever changes with you."

We walked the entire way down to the catacombs of Monster High. He stopped outside a pitch dark door and I watched as he moved the beam. Lilith quivered in my hold, but her voice remained strong, "Torture me if you like, but I'm never giving up. Not until you're all dead."

"See, that's where you're wrong. Both of you. This is just one giant misunderstanding."

"I think we have vastly different definitions of misunderstanding," I said.

"Lala...lights?" I knew Lilith couldn't see as well as the two of us, so I obliged. Candles scattered in the far corners of the huge stone room...under the drain. They lit up at my will, and Lilith froze in her step. Deuce walked around the two statues in the center and cleaned them off.

"This was all Headmistress Bloodgood's idea, okay? It wasn't mine. She has her reasons, but...you know. I don't agree. Not many of us do. Then again, not many of us know they're still alive."

She shook her head, staring at the stone that was once the living, breathing Van Helscream, "No...he's not...I don't...I don't understand."

"We didn't kill him," he said, pausing beside it, "The werewolves attacked him, but I didn't let them kill him. Killing is my dad's thing, not mine. I don't kill for a reason. It's not right. And I didn't let them kill him, because he might've tried, but he didn't succeed in doing anything to us. We didn't have a lot of time to think about it, but I kinda figured...he might've had a family. And the last thing I wanted was to be responsible for letting somebody's dad get killed."

She crumpled to her knees, her hands rising over her mouth, "He's alive in there?"

"He's frozen. He's not going to change or age or anything until he's free...and even I don't know when that is."

Her expression went from crestfallen to relieved. She began to cry into her hands, her shoulders shaking with her every sob. Her hands became one fist and clenched to her chest. "Oh god. Oh god, oh god. B-But my mother...the body..."

"What body?" I asked.

"She showed me my father's...body. It wasn't him. That lying bitch, it wasn't him!" She shot to her feet and her tears were replaced with anger. She shot out of the catacombs and began running back the way we'd come. I followed her, "Lilith, fill me in!"

"This isn't your fight Draculaura!" she snapped. I slammed my hand over the door before she could get out. She stared at me, "I'm sorry. I'm sorry I hurt you and I'm sorry I tried to hurt your friends, but if you don't let me out of here to hurt someone who needs to be-"

"I'll drive you there myself if you'll tell me what's been going on."

"I hope you have a full tank."