Eye contact - noun - The state in which two people are aware of looking directly into one another's eyes.

Footsteps nearly danced across the pavement as the Egyptian vampire stole into the night, red eyes wide and eagerly drinking in every sight the outside world had to offer. He was free, and if there was one thing that Benjamin had craved the entirety of his lock-down courtesy of Amun, his creator, it was this; pure, true freedom and the choice to do what he wanted, go where he wanted, be who he felt he was supposed to be… provided that he kept himself hidden, as it wouldn't be good if he set off even one of the humans in the populated area.

As he pulled the hood of the inky black cloak over his head, he had to admit that while Amun's constant vigilance over him was with was with good reason, which was one of the only reasons that Benjamin didn't snap every time the older vampire scolded him for leaving the palace without his permission. During his younger years when he was first turned, he hadn't understood Amun's laws and declared them unfair and rebelled against them whenever he could. Now, however, with wisdom someone would only attain if they had lived as long as he had, it was made clear to him that it was never Amun's intention to harm him by keeping him locked up inside the stone walls of the palace. In fact, it was kind of Amun to want to protect him and it wasn't as if he wasn't grateful for Amun's hospitality and this life that had been given to him. But there were times when he just wanted to get out and experience the world. He wanted to see how much things had changed in the centuries he'd been locked away, kept from the eyes of mortals. If he'd gone out at night time, he'd be alright. But it wasn't allowed. His meals were brought to him, he studied what was needed to study, he practiced with his power, and the cycle repeated. Who could blame him for just wanting something more?

What really drove him to leave was possibility that his mate was outside of these walls. Like any vampire, or any person, he was lonely without companionship. And, of course, centuries without someone to spend ones time with while the only other two people in the home were mates was something that was both extremely tedious and extremely painful. He yearned to just leave the walls once, to find his mate, to snatch her up and bring her back. If he just had the opportunity to find the vampire that he was meant to spend the rest of his eternity with, he'd be satisfied. However, it appeared that Amun wasn't going to allow him to do that, not even to catch a glimpse of the outside world. The only natural thing to do, of course, was to find a way to leave without Amun's permission.

It was a simple thing to do. While Amun was busy talking to Kebi, he focused in on a stack of about twenty clay jars, each containing various types of liquid. The key point to his plan, however, was that the liquids on the bottom were something he could control; water. With a grin, Benjamin peeked around the corner, using his gift to moved the jars on the bottom so that they brought the others to the ground, successfully shattering them while making it look as if they hadn't been deliberately knocked over. Amun jumped in surprise, before he ordered some servants to clean it up, helping them along with Kebi. Benjamin knew that this was his only chance, and no matter how angry Amun would get at him for leaving, he had to do it. After all, when would he get another opportunity like this?

Knowing that time was scarce, he left the moment he could, feeling exhilarated but afraid at the same time. He was cautious, making sure that there was nothing that could expose him, while also making sure that there was a way for him to see the sights, hear the sounds, and smell the smells of a world he'd been locked away from for so long.

While he walked along, he couldn't help the grin that formed on his lips. He hadn't been free is so long. Sure, he had been allowed out of the palace a few times, though they were always times when he was accompanied by Amun constantly breathing down his neck and fearing that the Volturi would see them and steal Benjamin away. And while his fears were well-founded, they didn't exactly do well for a relaxing walk outside of the palace. This time, he could be Benjamin. Not the one the Volturi would steal if they knew of his powers, not the boy Amun had saved centuries ago, and not the only person in the palace without a mate. No. For once, he was just Benjamin.

After centuries of practice, he found that it was easy to control himself around all of these humans. Not to mention that he had just recently fed, which in turn made the process of not pouncing on someone and drinking their blood all that much easier, which allowed him to pass through the crowds with ease, completely undetected by the humans milling about.

He peered through the crowds, walking at a casual pace, though his excitement grew with each passing minute. He didn't sense or smell any vampires as of yet, which was a good and bad thing; good because it meant that Amun hadn't realized he was gone yet and hadn't sent reinforcements to retrieve him, and bad because it meant that maybe he wasn't going to find his mate in time for him to return back to the palace and cease Amun's complaints by presenting him with companionship. Sure, Amun would be mad, but Hebi would ultimately quell his anger by siding with him.

Benjamin stopped short, all thoughts about if and when and how he would find his mate ceasing. It was as if someone rammed into him head on, except this wasn't a someone, but rather a something. His eyes widened at the scent, and he swore he felt his unbeating heart quicken and clench.

It took him a few moments of gazing around the rather thick crowd and trying to find the source until he spotted her. A woman walked with two older people, presumably her parents, her blonde hair falling to her mid-back. Hazel eyes peered out from long lashes, and a faint trace of freckles decorated her button nose. Bird-like lips spread to reveal white teeth while she laughed, a sound that reminded Benjamin of silver bells chiming. He felt something stir in his chest, blood he thought long ago had cold suddenly springing to life.

He took the time to analyze the two she was walking beside then. The man walking with her had light brown hair, his eyes a similar color to hers, although his skin was a bit darker than hers. He stood taller than both of the women he was walking with, and towered over the blonde that Benjamin had first noticed. The woman walking on his other side had the same blonde hair as the daughter and the same freckles, but her eyes were a bright blue, and she was taller, almost reaching the same height as the man she was walking with. He assumed that they were her parents, though he didn't see any striking family resemblance.

Benjamin tried to continue walking, looking back at the path in front of him, though he was currently shaking, his red eyes still wide. She was everything he'd ever hoped for and more. He needed her, he craved her. He couldn't just leave her there, even if she was a human. Benjamin looked back, risking another glance at the mysterious blonde, only to see that she was looking back at him as well. The moment their eyes met, he melted, and all resolve in him went with it. He knew that he had to have her, and that he'd leave every single night after this if he had to just to get to know her.

Her parents got her attention again, and soon she was gone, leaving Benjamin in the dust. He slowly retreated back to the palace, receiving an earful from Amun about leaving and how dangerous it was. He only half listened because he barely even cared as his mind mostly on the woman he'd met, the very woman who'd managed to capture his heart without him even knowing her name.