A/N: A repost of a story I wrote some time ago, but took down for some reason. Tweaking a few small things and fixing mistakes as I go along. Enjoy!
My older brother, Aiden, slung his arm around me as we walked along the cobblestoned streets of Volterra.
"See, Volterra is fun." He insisted, squeezing my shoulder softly as we turned another corner. We were here on a trip to celebrate my eighteenth birthday and graduating high school.
I'd always dreamed of going to Rome. The Colosseum. The Pantheon. But, it was just too expensive. Really, just the airfare to any city across the ocean alone made the possibility of this trip a fantasy. But, somehow, Aiden had managed it. He always did.
Here in Volterra, some distant relatives had a villa where were staying. I paused as we crossed the street, looking up at a magnificent castle and watchtower splayed out before us.
"Didn't the housekeeper say to stay away from this side of town?" I wondered softly, both of us stopping in our tracks as a tour came from another street toward the watchtower.
"Would you like to join the tour?" The gorgeous, entrancing guide asked kindly as she passed, her red eyes drawing me in...
Something about this just didn't feel right. "No, thank–" I began, listening to the churning in the bottom of my stomach.
"We'd love to." My brother interrupted, taking my hand and pulling me alone to join the group.
"Aiden!" I hissed in annoyance, hating that fact that he hadn't even taken my hesitance into consideration.
"Where's your sense of adventure? It's a beautiful place, enjoy it."
I huffed, but relented, smacking his shoulder playfully before we took a few quick steps to catch up with the rest of the group. The tour seemed fun for about five minutes, I was genuinely enjoying all of the features the woman guiding us–Heidi–according to her name tag, pointed out. Then, everything went wrong. My stomach lurched as heavy wooden doors were closed behind us.
I looked into Aiden's ice blue eyes. "I've got a really bad feeling about this." I whispered, when his look of apprehension met mine.
When screams were heard from the front of the group, I knew we were in deeper trouble than I'd dared to imagine. Aiden threw me behind him protectively just in time, grunting in pain as a dark-haired man bit into his throat viciously, splattering blood on my white sundress and the floor.
I gasped, my legs giving out beneath me as I fell backwards against the door, staring forward in horror at Aiden's dead body and his killer, barely noticing the carnage scattered throughout the rest of the hall.
"Didyme?" One of the men called. Through all of the chaos around me, somehow I knew his voice was directed at me. I could feel his gaze on me as he began to approach.
As the man moved closer, I got the distinct feeling I was next. I closed my eyes, silently praying for a quick death. A moment passed and I heard the man call out behind him. Everything was quiet now. No more screams. "Marcus, you must come see this... She looks just like Didyme."
"Open your eyes." A soft voice commanded, his cool, sweet breath barely expelling on my face.
I opened my blue-grey eyes, ones that match my brother's now empty and vacant ones, to see another black-haired man, looking at me in wonder. His eyes were ruby red and his skin a pale white. I found it only a little comforting that he didn't have blood splattered all over his clothes.
"Just like her." He stated, reaching out to touch my face with his hand. I flinched, closing my eyes again and turning my head away, towards the door, hoping to escape the contact. I could hear him audibly sigh and shift away. Only then did I dare open my eyes again.
My gaze was drawn to Aiden's lifeless body just in time to hear the man who killed him speak. "Escort her to her room please, Renata." He said to a lovely pale woman.
"Yes, Master Aro." She said respectfully, helping me off the floor and guiding me by the hand. Numbly, I followed, gazing after Aiden until we left the hall.
I was led into a beautiful, large room, decorated in a muted lavender, my favorite shade, but I couldn't have cared less what the room looked like, just then.
"Please call if you need anything, mistress." The woman bowed, closing the door.
I sat on the edge of the king-sized bed, putting my face in my hands and bawling.
I ignored the soft knock at the door, just before I heard the door creak open. I didn't look up. It was beyond my abilities at that point. It closed and I felt the bed sink and a pair of cold arms around me.
I didn't know who it was, but I didn't care. "Just kill me." I begged, lowering my hands from my face. "Please."
Not a second had passed before he was before me, kneeling. Not Aro, but the other man, the one whose clothes were clean. "Don't say such things." He said softy, putting a cold hand on my knee. "I would never hurt you. I would give my own life to protect you."
I could see love and compassion in his eyes, but I didn't understand it. I shook as more tears came. "Please don't cry." He said lowly, bringing his thumb up to brush away my tears. "Why don't you tell me your name?"
"E-Evelyn." I answered, looking down at my lap.
"Evelyn." He whispered it as if it were a prayer before he continued. "I am Marcus."
I nodded, the image of Aiden's body not leaving my mind. I truly was alone in the world, now that the last member of my immediate family was dead.
"Why are you so sad, Evelyn?"
More tears streamed down as I spoke, my voice laced with tears. "He killed my brother." I was pulled against a hard chest and I sobbed, letting him rock me and make soothing noises.
Next thing I knew, I was in that same bed, beneath the covers. It was dark, but there was a light in the corner. A lamp by which Marcus read a book, sitting in a red chair. He looked up, surprised. "You're awake."
I rubbed my eyes and ran a hand through my wavy, shoulder-length dark brown hair. "I fell asleep?" I murmured softly, peeling back the blankets and flinching as I saw the blood on my dress. I froze up a little at the sight, fresh tears beginning to well in my eyes.
"Yes." He said, placing his book on a table. "There is a change of clothes for you in the bathroom." He said kindly, noticing my distress. "You may also bathe, if you wish."
I nodded, getting up and heading in the direction his head had tilted, closing the door behind me. I threw the ruined garment over my head and onto the floor, staring angrily at my reflection.
Why did you save me, Aiden? Why do you always save me? You idiot! How am I supposed to go on without you?!
I brought my fisted right hand down on the reflective surface, cracking it–to my surprise–and having a piece of it slice into the side of my palm before falling into the sink.
"Ah!" I hissed, turning on the water and running it under it as I grabbed the dress, pressing it against the inch long gash as I pulled it away from the sink, pulling the fabric away for only a second to assess the damage. Blood was flowing out freely, I was going to need stitches. "Marcus?" I called, my voice as panicked as I was as the material became red with my blood.
The door flew open at once. He stared at me, looking stiff and hard, like he was fighting with himself. "I broke your mirror. I'm sorry, I can pay for it." I said in a panic, holding my ruined dress as hard as I could against the wound. "I think I need stitches." I gasped out, snapping his out of his trance.
He scooped me up in his arms, running inhumanly fast into what looked like a medical ward. I was a little dizzy when he set me down on an examination table. "Do not move." He started sternly. "I will return with Chelsea. She will treat you." I didn't have to wait more than a minute. 'Chelsea' was a pretty blonde who looked to be in her late twenties.
She got to work immediately, trashing the dress and using gauze to slow the bleeding before she started sewing me up, using butterfly bandages to keep the wound flush while she worked.
I bit my lip and clenched my free hand tightly when she began. Seeing my pain, Marcus stopped watching Chelsea work and moved to my side, holding his hand out for me to squeeze.
His hand was still ice cold and it didn't give much when I squeezed, although I only did so a few times. When it was finished, Chelsea looked at me apologetically. "You took that well. I'm sorry I couldn't give you anything for the pain, but you haven't eaten since you arrived. It would have been dangerous."
I shrugged. "I've had a broken bone reset without painkillers. Stitches? No big deal." I mentally winced thinking about it. She nodded, looking impressed as Marcus helped me down from the table. I blushed, realizing I was only in my underwear. Although, neither of them had acted as if I was the whole while.
Marcus took off his cloak, fastening it around me. "You don't need to be embarrassed. You're beautiful." I blushed harder, starting in the direction I was sure we had come from only to hear him chuckle. "This way." He said, motioning in the opposite direction.
When we were back in the room, I gently handed him back the cloak. "Sorry for all that trouble. I really don't know why I did that. Being angry isn't going to fix anything." I admonished.
"I too have felt loss." He said sadly, setting down the cloak and embracing me. "Try to remember the good times. It helps."