Chapter 283Family to Fall

When the veil of darkness lifted, Isabel was gone. My body felt groggy and slow, it was hard to focus on where I was and what I needed to to. It took a few seconds for the black to be completely gone. I only remember one time before this one where I woke up like this. The time being hunted...

If she really had done what I thought she did, there was going to be another hunt, but this time with me being the huntress instead of the hunted.

I took a moment to look around while I stood up, time appeared to have past more than I liked. The rain had slowed down to a light drizzle but was still washing the world clean from the sins it'd seen. It wasn't as dark as before, in fact morning appeared not too far away as the sky had brightened somewhat.

Muriel's sword was right in front of me. It almost begged to be picked up and used. Almost dream-like I grabbed the hilt and raised it up, surprised by it's weight and my own strength. The blade itself was quite interesting. It had the shape of an old claymore, but the blade itself was folded steel. It had that strange pattern of lines along it that made it look almost, but not quite, like silver wood.

With the sword still in hand, I walked to the bodies of Khuna and Valerie. The blood around them had almost washed away, but their clothes were soaked with it. Even the smell of blood was still strongly in the air, alluring. Both of them were completely still and silent. The only heartbeats I could hear, when I focused, were those of Muriel and myself.

I went to Khuna first, she was closest both to my heart and my body. Her body wasn't even limp, she was curled up in a sort of foetal position and completely solid. When I touched her skin the coldness of it scared me. I wanted to shake her, make her alive again, but I didn't

It was much too late.

Her skin...

Her once pink and soft skin was almost like marble now. Blueish and completely without blood. So cold, so lifeless. But I knew she was dead before I even touched her. I, maybe, held my hand on her face for a second before I moved on. This was more than my mind could take, so it started wandering.

I wasn't aware before now that Vampires could die by losing blood. But it made sense, in a way. Blood was keeping us alive, it was our life.

The realization of losing Khuna wasn't really there, yet. I was just floating from thought to thought while I took in everything in the scene.

As I moved to Valerie, who was almost in the same position, I noticed how her skin was even lighter. A pale blue that was almost white, even more solid to the touch than Khuna. I caressed her raven-black hair off her cheeks, noticing a faint red line where her tears had crossed her face.

There was no anger or sadness.

This was all just too unreal.

Muriel was waking up. I realized I still had her sword in my hand. Part of me realized that it was probably a very bad idea to make any aggressive moves towards her. Sword or not, she was much, much stronger than I.

Instead of putting the sword down, I had a simpler idea; Resting the sword on the palms of my outstretched hands, offering it back to her as soon as she spotted it.

Muriel tried to stand up quicker than her body allowed and wobbled slightly when she looked for her sword.

"Here" I spoke carefully.

When Muriel saw me, she immediately assumed a defensive stance until she saw how I was holding her sword.

She straightened up and walked the three steps towards me, taking the sword in a smooth but fast movement. She did take care not to cut me as she picked it up and looked directly into my eyes with some surprise.

"You could have killed me."

I shook my head. "I don't ki..." Wait, that wasn't true, I had killed. But only if there was no other option. "I don't attack. You're a beautiful person, Muriel. Even though I'm not sure what I should feel about... all of this... I don't feel hostile towards you."

She rubbed her neck, looking sideways to my lost friends. "But... I..." She sounded hesitant, guilty. A tone that sounded so alien on her voice.

I wasn't listening, I wasn't sure who I wanted to blame. All kinds of feelings were racing to me in the distant back regions of my being, taunting me with screams and waves but never quite reaching the foreground.

Muriel's voice cut through with yet another surprise.

"I'm sorry."