~oOo~ V A L E N T I N A Theo was growing more hostile by the second. I was paralyzed with fear because I had never seen his face transform this way. “Back away from me!” “I just…” “I said, stay back!” he furiously raged, his eyes glowing with danger. I watched the dark spider veins fade in and out around his cheekbones. It looked like he was struggling to fight against his supernatural nature. “Why are you being so aggressive towards me?” “Isn’t it obvious?” Theo scathingly replied. His natural eye color began to return, as he finally regained control over the demon. I steeled myself and replied, “You had no problem sleeping with me not too long ago. Have you forgotten so quickly?” “I wasn’t sleeping with you, I was with…” He stopped midsentence and turned towards the window again. “With Violet?” I answered for him. “It was my body you fucked.” The way I said her name sounded contemptuous, almost like I was jealous. Theo faced me, looking visibly upset. “Don’t you dare degrade what I shared with her. It wasn’t mindless fucking! I’ve always made love to her, I’ve never just… never mind.” Was he completely delusional? His “supposed love of his life” looked nothing like me. Was his bond with Violet so strong that he was able to look beyond the physical? From my understanding, sex was everything physical. “You touched me, you kissed me, you were inside of me!” I repeated, emphasizing the “me” part. “You watched us?” he narrowed his eyes, crossing those massive arms in his chest. “Well?” “Watched?” I scoffed. “You had sex with me!” “The situation is too complicated for your human mind to comprehend.” Theo stared me down long and hard before he casually made his way into the kitchen. “I comprehend it just fine,” I uttered. Did he really not feel any remorse? My eyes wandered over to where he was standing, watching him open the rundown refrigerator, and pull out what appeared to be a… “Is that a stolen blood bag?” I asked, looking shocked and disgusted at the same time. “Straight out of Mercy General.” He smirked. I had heard of bank robbers, but blood burglars? This was new to me. “Don’t look at me with those judgy eyes,” Theo glared. “It’s either terrorize the public and feed straight from the vein, or make a weekly visit to the blood bank. Seeing as how I’m a great candidate for donations, technically, I’m not stealing anything. I am an American citizen. I pay taxes—well, actually I don’t, but you get the idea.” “Not really,” I awkwardly answered. He sipped back on the crimson liquid, as I carefully watched his eyes with a scrutinizing stare. They weren’t transitioning. Was it anger that triggered those dark veins to appear? “Will you die without—you know…” “No, my body will just shut down, sort of like going to sleep. Sleeping death, I suppose.” I stayed quiet, feeling uncomfortable all of a sudden. This entire situation was so confusing. Time to explain it as best I can. “Listen, I have to tell you something.” “I’m all ears.” I took a deep breath and mentally processed my first four words. “I’ve been struggling with multiple personality disorder ever since I was old enough to realize.” At a leisured pace, I treaded into the kitchen and continued, “It took a while for doctors to get me on the proper medication and prevent my alter from coming out. I haven’t experienced any fugue states for the past seven years. Not until…” He waited for me to finish, but I was kind of hoping he understood what I meant. “Not until you kissed me,” I sighed, getting red in the face. Theo cursed under his breath. “He was right.” “Who?” He tossed the empty blood bag in the trash and said, “No one.” “Micah?” That name was enough to make him stand completely still, as he turned his head and locked his gaze on me. “How do you know that name?” There was always this razor sharp edge in his voice that was extremely intimidating. “He visited me in my dream before I woke up.” “What did he say to you?” Theo was serious now, but I didn’t escort avcılar want to tell him every single detail. “He told me things about Violet, who you are, and who he is.” I left out the details about how he showed me Violet’s romantic history with him instead of telling me. “Great, that’s bloody marvelous,” Theo grouchily muttered. “Micah! Show yourself, you feathered freak!” he erupted. “I know you can hear me!” “Um… is it just me, or is there another person in the room that I don’t quite see?” I confusingly questioned. “He makes it his life purpose to stalk me. I suppose I should be flattered.” “So, you just yell—and poof, he appears?” “The bastard always shows up at random.” Clearly he wasn’t very fond of him. “You tell me to stay away from her, but then you give her sex dreams!? Not so ‘pious’ now, are you, Micah?” he shouted into the air like a madman. “It wasn’t a sex dream!” I countered back, feeling this urgent need to defend his reputation. “The only person who’s constantly giving off sex vibes is you!” Theo cocked his head to the side and looked at me inquisitively. “That makes no sense. You do realize that you’re making no sense at all, right?” “I’m standing in a strange apartment belonging to a self-proclaimed vampire-werewolf…” “Lycan,” he corrected. “Whatever. You’ve got me mixed up in your secret fantasy world and…” “It’s not fantasy. It’s reality, love.” “Quit interrupting me,” I sighed in frustration. “My point is, I just found out that vampires, lycans, and angels exist, all in less than 48 hours, and you’re telling me that I’m the one who’s not making any sense?” “How am I giving off sex vibes?” he took a couple steps forward, as I took a step back. “Jee, I don’t know, maybe because you had sex with me?” I said with sarcasm. That wasn’t the only reason. I felt attracted to him from the moment he saved me in that dark alleyway. Now that I knew what it felt like to be with him, only increased my desire. I was pretty sure I wasn’t the only one who sexually fantasized about him. “Anyway, I’ll be leaving now.” I turned around and he appeared in front of me in half a second. “You need to stop doing that!” I shouted, startled half to death. “You’re not going anywhere.” “You can’t force me to stay.” “He warned you, didn’t he?” Theo asked, darkening his eyes. “It doesn’t matter what he warned. You pretty much violated me, which kind of indicates that you really are the bad guy.” I felt bad for saying that. The entire experience felt nothing like a violation. It wasn’t like he stripped me of my virtue. I had none. At least that’s how I saw myself. “Now, if you excuse me, I’m going to finish getting dressed and then I’ll be out of your way for good this time.” I started in the opposite direction, but he grabbed my arm. “I was caught up in a moment, Valentina. I’ve been living for centuries haunted by memories of Violet.” Micah showed me those memories. I would’ve been haunted too if I ever experienced a love like that. “I wasn’t thinking. I acted impulsively. I should’ve stepped back and rationalized what was going on, but in that moment all I wanted was…” “Look, I know you’re hopelessly in love with her, but this is my body. I have ownership over it, not Violet.” He stayed silent and let my words sink in. I was only speaking the truth. Violet felt like a visitor, someone who should’ve checked out ages ago. “I promise never to touch you again.” Never? Moment of truth… that was seriously the best sex of my life. “You’ve traumatized me.” “Believe me, if I could compel you to forget, I would.” “That’s even worse! You wouldn’t be taking any responsibility for your actions. Giving me a quick fix of amnesia hardly redeems you.” “You need to understand something,” he communicated. “I’m an abomination. Half beast, half vampire, and a man somewhere in between.” Those same black spider veins began to appear around his eyes. I guess he really could control it at will. “I’ve committed escort bahcesehir one too many sins and slaughtered too many to even qualify for a chance at redemption. That wasn’t what I was seeking when I rescued you. I’ve spent what seems to be an eternity trying to wipe out my race, so that I could be reunited with Violet. Running into you last night was an accident. I was on my usual hunt, when we just so happened to cross paths.” We hadn’t just crossed paths, he heard me screaming and saved my life. He had no idea that Violet was inside me. He saved me. Not her. Then again, what if he saved me because of a pre-destined love that he shared with her? I began to question in my head. “You didn’t have to rescue me, but you did. Why?” “I told you already. I tried to compel you, and it didn’t work, so I brought you back here to try and solve that mystery. Needless to say, the mystery remains unsolved and will probably wind up a cold case. I know I acted like an arse at first, but do you really think I would’ve kicked you out of my flat if I knew she was in there?” Ouch. That kind of hurt to hear him say that. But to be fair, he did come after me eventually. Micah had not shown me any of his horrendous slaughters. All I had seen in those flashbacks was a loving, romantic Theo that would’ve died for the woman he loved. He was gentle with her, passionate, exclusive. I envied Violet. “Just please, don’t leave,” Theo gently pleaded. I had no idea why this was getting me so emotional. Maybe because I felt used, or maybe because I desired to be loved the same way Violet was loved and adored. Some other chick’s soul was inside of me, yet we were two completely different people. I was the kind of girl that liked to wear skinny jeans, crop tops, ripped shorts, and didn’t own a pair of heels because they killed my feet. But whenever Violet took over, my wardrobe style drastically changed to mini dresses, skirts, stilettos, and heavy makeup. The way she walked and talked was totally different to my usual mannerisms. She was a real girly-girl and I… well, I don’t know what I was. I was just me. I guess I was a plain Jane compared to her. Violet was more confident and proud of the way she carried herself. Whenever she took the steering wheel, all I could do was sit back and watch. I had no other choice.╬ ☩ ╬ ☩ ╬ ☩ ╬ ☩ ╬ M I C A H There have been moments in my immortal existence where I have questioned the rules of God. Why did he create a legion of angels and restrict us from making contact with his beloved humans? Why not make our presence known to further guide them into the light and thwart the evil around them? I’ve always been on the outside looking in. Breaking my oath for Violet nearly cost me everything. “Your mind is somewhere else, Micah.” I turned around and faced my Legion commander, Gabriel. He was an Archangel in Heaven with a respectful reputation in rank and duty. Gabriel was tall, just like myself, had light blue eyes, and his hair was a shade lighter and longer than mine. He was dressed in plane clothing, just like I was, it was our usual disguise when we wanted to blend in with the humans. “You need to stop watching over the girl,” he warned, stepping beside me. The sun was setting in the horizon, and I was standing on top of a sky scraper, watching over the civilians as an unseen entity. “She’s not safe, Gabriel.” “She is not your responsibility.” “How can you say that? I’m the reason why her life has turned out the way it has.” “Our Creator forgave you for your indiscretions and rebellion against The Order.” “I wasn’t rebelling, I wanted to save her soul.” “You defied the will of God, and yet he was merciful enough to forgive you. Stop peering into her future and let her decide.” “Everything I did would have been in vain, don’t you understand?” “You are not responsible for Valentina’s life. God gave humans the freedom to choose. He offered all of us that same choice, and we have allied ourselves to the beylikdüzü escort Legion of Light.” This wasn’t news to me, I knew this already. Gabriel had a compulsive habit of reminding me every chance he got. “She almost killed herself last night. Do you know how it felt to watch her in that bath tub, bleeding out… seconds away from eternal damnation?” “We are angels, Micah. We follow the will of the Lord because he is all knowing, merciful, and wise. He has blessed us with his abundant love and we must show our gratitude by adhering to The Order.” “Where is his mercy and compassion when a human forfeits their life? What if all the suffering and pain on this earth is too great for a sensitive soul to bear?” “Nothing justifies suicide, Micah. I warn you, do not question him the same way Lucifer did. It will not bode well. The world is populated with billions of people. If every human decided to end their life by the masses, what would be left? What purpose would that serve? The gift of life is a blessing to all, be it a tree or a fish. It is all of God’s creation. Adam and Eve were created in his very image and…” “And he cast them out of the Garden of Eden when they defied him,” I interrupted. “He cursed them when they ate the forbidden fruit.” “Do not speak blasphemy!” Gabriel cautioned. “You serve the Legion of Light. To be what we are is an honor. When you speak such desecration, it makes me question your faith in our Creator.” I questioned my own purpose many times. That was no secret. I guess that’s why Gabriel always felt the need to counsel me like an older brother. “Lucifer walks the earth with his demon army,” he went on. “Do the humans know this? Some, perhaps. But as time goes on, the love of God will diminish in the hearts of humanity, until we reach the end of times and the great reckoning arrives. The Earth is corrupted. It’s always been this way ever since Lucifer besmirched it with sin. Our purpose is to maintain a balance. This is a holy war we are fighting, Micah. Turn your attention towards the greater purpose. Valentina does not belong in your world. Do not make the same mistake you made with Violet.” “She doesn’t know who Theo truly is,” I replied. “Theo doesn’t even know.” “And he must remain forever ignorant to the truth. The girl will be his undoing.”~oOo~ V A L E N T I N A Theo had gone out for a huge majority of the afternoon. He told me if I left, he would hunt me down and drag me back here by force, so there really was no point in running. It’s not like I wanted to go. I didn’t have a place to stay anymore. I was officially evicted and all my stuff was surely to be repossessed. He said that I shouldn’t worry about it. And I quote him when I say, “there’s nothing that compulsion can’t cure.” Then how come it doesn’t work on me? I pondered the thought, as the tub filled with warm water. My iPhone was on top of the vanity, playing Lana Del Ray’s album, Born to Die. I managed to find some candles in a cabinet before I entered the bathroom. I lit them one by one, placing them around the sink and window sill, and then I switched off the light. With a drop of my towel, I carefully stepped into the tub. It felt so good to be submerged in warmth. My muscles were aching after the passionate love making that my body experienced earlier in the day. Theo kept going for hours and hours. No human could be able to last as long as he did and recover so fast. I felt slightly aroused just thinking about it. Leaning back, I rested my neck on the edge of the tub and shut my eyes. Last night was a bit terrifying. I was in such a bad state of mind. If Theo had not saved me when I he did, I surely would’ve released my last breath before it was lights out. Permanently. I tried to push the images away and focus on other things. Everything’s going to be okay. Just relax , I kept telling myself. As I slowly slipped away into soothing serenity, something started dripping on my forehead. I opened my eyes and looked up. Oh dear God… no… no… “Aaaaahhhh!” My shrieking screams became garbled under the water. I couldn’t breathe. Something or someone was trying to drown me. I tried to fight against it, but it was no use. The invisible adversary was much stronger than me.