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Immortal prophecy, p.6

Immortal Prophecy, page 6

 

Immortal Prophecy
 


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  Her heart did a flip. “Secrets?”

  He turned and focused his full attention on her. “Yes, secrets we kept from her to keep her safe, only it hasn’t really turned out how we’d hoped.”

  “Is she in danger?”

  “Yes.”

  “From who?”

  This was it. This was the moment she’d been waiting for. If he said that a man named Vincent was trying to kill her she’d know it was her he was guarding.

  James fell neatly into her trap. “A man who has been trying to find her and kill her since she was born.”

  “What is his name?” She held her breath.

  “Vincent.”

  Instead of the sense of victory that Ally had expected, dread raced through her and her face paled.

  “Alessandra?”

  She heard him calling her name, but it sounded like it came from a great distance. The world around her melted away, and she saw him again, the man standing with James. The man she would swear was Vincent. She trembled. “He’s found me.”

  “What? Alessandra? Can you hear me?” He caressed her cheek and stared into her vacant eyes. “Alessandra?”

  He cradled her face and kissed her softly. It was that or slap her, and he didn’t hit women, no matter the circumstances.

  She jumped, and he pulled back. “What happened, Alessandra?”

  She put her hand up to her temple. “I’m not sure, I can’t remember. Everything was gone, and I was seeing something else entirely.”

  “Come on, let’s get you back inside.”

  She shook her head. “I’m alright. I just need a moment.”

  James cursed himself. He should’ve known better. She was baiting him and he fell right into the trap. Repeating Vincent’s name had triggered something in her mind. He could see it happening, and he knew her mind was desperate to break through his compulsion, but without success if she couldn’t remember what she’d just seen. So much for putting things right.

  Ally turned her head and saw James’ bleak expression. Resting one hand on his arm, she turned his face towards her with the other. “I owe you an apology. I still don’t know what’s going on, but I was told five years ago that you were supposed to be my guardian, and yes, I got jealous when I thought you were guarding some other girl and then I wanted to pry the truth out of you. I’m sorry.”

  “You don’t owe me an apology. If I wasn’t so distracted by the enchanting beauty I find myself with, I would’ve seen through that straight away.”

  She blushed.

  He cradled her face again. “You will learn a lot of things, and I hope that you can forgive me.”

  She stared at him, the confusion plain on her face. “Forgive you for what?”

  His gaze moved to her cherry red lips. “This for one thing.” He leaned in and captured her mouth with his in fiery kiss.

  The spark she’d felt when they touched was nothing compared to this. This was like a bolt of lightning had struck her. A soft moan fell unbidden from her lips and he answered her with a growl and pulled her closer to him.

  “Ally? James?” A voice called them.

  James cursed and pulled back. “She better have a good excuse.”

  Ally touched her swollen lips and her eyes were dazed. She blinked. “What?”

  “Your grandmother is coming this way.”

  “Oh.”

  “There you are!” Adele cried as she shifted uncomfortably.

  “What is it Adele?” James all but growled.

  “There’s something I think you’ll want to deal with.”

  He noted her body was rigid with tension, and her eyes held a fear that made him very nervous. “What’s going on?” he demanded

  “It’s about that guy you met last night.”

  “What happened?” he asked, his voice strained.

  “Nothing yet, but he’s been hovering around.”

  “Where?”

  “The ranges at Mount Dandenong.”

  “I don’t understand.” He turned to look at Ally for a moment, before continuing, “After last night he should still be in recovery, not scampering about the ranges.”

  Adele looked at her granddaughter with sadness in her eyes. “Recovery or not, he won’t let this business rest until it’s finished.”

  James’ intense gaze settled on Ally again. Unease slithered through her causing an involuntary shudder. James and Adele shared a look that was so quick, she wasn’t even sure if it’d happened.

  But she was now certain that something else apart from Vincent was being kept from her. She also concluded that her grandmother did in fact know more than she was letting on.

  James took Ally’s hand catching her full attention. “I’m sorry Alessandra, but I have to deal with this,” he said, sadness lingering in his eyes.

  A pang hit her heart at the thought of him leaving. “Is it him?”

  James brought her hand up to his lips and kissed it. “Don’t worry. I’ll take care of it.” He faced Adele. “Leave it with me, Adele.”

  Adele nodded and left them alone to say their goodbyes.

  James and Ally turned to each other. He pulled her up and drew her into his arms again. “I’m so sorry, Alessandra. I wish I could stay.”

  She sighed. “I wish you could too.”

  “Good night, Alessandra.”

  “Ally,” she corrected with a shy smile.

  “Good night, Ally.”

  “Good night, James,” she said, her heart bursting with joy.

  Tonight had been beyond anything she had ever dreamed of, and there was more to come. She wanted to twirl around in a circle just for the fun of it. She knew there were secrets, and that Vincent was real and out there, but for one night, she let her heart soar and forgot all about the past and the future. A waiter walked by and offered her champagne. She took it then sat back down to watch the stars for a while. It had been too long since she’d sat and let her mind drift. James and his kiss consumed her thoughts.

  Ally had been sitting there for what felt like hours when she decided it was time to go find out how Kat was going with Chase. She was floating on air as she walked towards the house. Nothing could penetrate her bubble of happiness.

  Then she heard the twig snap behind her.

  8. DIVERSION

  “Adele, where are you?” James bellowed, not hiding his frustration. The house was empty, all the party guests had congregated outside. James didn’t blame them, as it was such a beautiful evening.

  “In the kitchen, James,” Adele called out.

  He marched across the lounge and into the kitchen.

  “Things seemed to go well with you and Ally,” Adele said, her expression conflicted. She smiled but her eyes told another story. Terror swam in those violet pools.

  James sighed. “Mostly.” He raked his hands through his hair. “Finally, I was with her again, and now I have to leave to deal with that creature.”

  “We have to keep her safe,” she said. “That takes priority over everything.”

  “I’ve been doing that for the last twenty-one years, haven’t I?” He paced around the room, frustrated.

  “She’ll survive this.” Adele’s heart broke for him. She stepped in front of him and laid her hand on his arm. “Do you know why I have faith that Ally will survive this?”

  “No. Enlighten me.”

  “Because she has you.” Adele replied with such conviction, James had no choice but to believe her. “I wouldn’t put her life in the hands of just anyone. Prophecy, be damned.” She threw her hands in the air. “If it’d been anyone but you, I would’ve told them to go to hell and taken her into hiding myself.”

  “Thank you, Adele.” James replied, humbled and honoured that Adele thought so much of him.

  She gave him a hug. “You big oaf. Go out there and save our girl.”

  He collected himself and gathered the information he needed before setting out to find Vincent and send him on his way. It was a stalling tactic, but he needed time. Mor
e than he’d get. Ally wasn’t ready yet. She didn’t even have a clue about who and what she was.

  Things would get terrible, quick. God help us all when we tell Ally what’s going on. He rolled his eyes.

  Rubbing his forehead, he dropped all human pretence as he stalked out to his black Mercedes and got in. No-one was around to see him walking faster than any human could. His foot hit the accelerator and floored it.

  As he sped through the winding roads, he overtook every car in front of him. He had to find Vincent and stop him.

  James pulled into the dark deserted car park and got out. He stood tall and threw his senses out to find any potential traps or decoys. Something wasn’t right, but he couldn’t decipher what it was. “Why would he lure me out here?”

  Sensing no immediate danger, he moved towards the dense forest that lay stretched out before him. He didn’t want to go in too far, but he suspected Vincent wouldn’t be hanging around near the car park. Unable to see the road behind him any longer, he stopped and scanned his surroundings, searching for the unseen threat. Someone stalked him and the odour of a vampire burnt his nose. “Come out and face me, you coward!” he bellowed.

  High pitched laughter rang out through the trees.

  James stepped back in surprise. “What is she doing here?” he whispered. He’d been right. Something was wrong.

  “It’s so nice to see you again, James.” The delicate voice stung his ears and it was coming from all different directions. She was intentionally throwing him off.

  “What’s going on?” he snarled. “Why are you wasting my time?”

  “I wanted to see you, James,” her voice whispered all around him.

  “Cut the crap, Natalia.”

  “Oh, how sweet, you remember me after all these years,” she cooed.

  Natalia floated out from between two trees close to where James stood. The foul creature before him appeared breathtaking. Long blonde hair fell to her waist and her tiny figure clad in a skin-tight black dress that left nothing to the imagination. As well, she had big blue eyes which made her look innocent. But James knew better. Natalia had a black heart and was rotten to the core. The tragedy was that she hadn’t always been that way. Vincent had made her that way.

  “What’s the matter, James?” she asked, her eyes wide. “I don’t bite.”

  James glared at her, and cocked his head on the side. “Well, actually you do.”

  She threw her head back and laughed. “You got me there.”

  He was sick of the conversation already. “What do you want?”

  “Oh, lots of things.” She toyed with him.

  “Natalia,” he growled in warning.

  “Not in the mood for games?” she asked with a pout. “What a shame. I always love a good game.”

  “Where is he?”

  “Where is who?”

  “Don’t toy with me Natalia,” James said losing what little patience he had. “Where. Is. Vincent.”

  “Oh, Vincent,” she replied, with a wide smirk. “He’s taking care of Alessandra.”

  James turned red with rage, as he realised he’d been tricked. “And you’re the distraction.”

  “Clever boy.” Natalia smirked, enjoying the game.

  “You won’t get her!” he shouted, wanting to tear her apart.

  It was so obvious. What was wrong with him he hadn’t seen what was staring him in the face?

  Natalia dropped the beautiful façade. Her voice became raspy, and her eyes glowed an eerie red. The mask gone, she showed her true self. “Make no mistake, James. He has found her and will destroy her. The prophecy will never be fulfilled.”

  “Not going to happen, Natalia,” James retorted. He brought forth a fireball in the palm of his hand and threw it straight at her heart. She jumped at the last minute but didn’t avoid it completely.

  The fireball struck her arm and she screamed in fury. “You’ll pay for that, James!” she hissed at him. Her eyes burned with a promise of vengeance.

  She turned and ran, letting out a scream of pure loathing that filled the night sky and the surrounding forest.

  James ran to his car, hoping that Vincent hadn’t found Ally, yet knowing it was only a matter of time before he did. He phoned Adele. She needed to get Ally inside and keep her under close supervision until he returned, if she hadn’t been abducted already.

  Adele answered. “James?”

  “It was a decoy. Get her inside now.”

  Adele slammed the phone down on the bench and ran.

  James put his foot to the floor, there was no time to waste. He’d be back at Adele’s house in ten minutes, but that was far too long. He should’ve known better. How had he been so stupid?

  Ally whirled around to see Kat walk towards her. She put her hand over her heart. “You gave me a fright.”

  “Sorry. I was just coming to see how you were getting along with James.”

  “What a coincidence. I was on my way to find you.”

  Both girls stopped talking when they heard a twig snap.

  “What was that?” Kat whispered, staring in the direction the sound came from.

  “I’m not sure. I heard it before, but I assumed it was you.”

  “I don’t think so,” Kat replied. “A rabbit?”

  Ally raised her eyebrows. “Something isn’t right,” Ally said and sniffed the air. “Can you smell that?” The odour was subtle, but distinct.

  “What?”

  Ally couldn’t put her finger on what was wrong, but her instincts screamed at her to run. She scanned the area with her eyes once more. “We should head back inside.”

  “Are you ok, Ally?” Kat asked.

  “Yeah I’m fine. I just...” Her voice trailed off.

  “Ally?”

  She snapped back to reality and turned towards Kat. “There’s something bad going on around here, and it has to do with the secret, I’m sure of it,” Ally confessed.

  “Whatever it is, we’ll work it out.” Kat put her arm around Ally. “Come on let’s go get another drink, and you can tell me about James.”

  “Yeah,” she muttered.

  Deep within the trees something watched them. The prophecy girl stood before him with nothing to stop him from taking her. He’d do away with her little friend and take her before either of them had registered what was happening. He would be well rewarded for taking this prize back to his master. The creature’s eyes glowed with satisfaction. It was too easy.

  As he was about to make his move, the air changed. The vibrations radiating off someone approaching made him question his original plan. “So, you aren’t unguarded then, my pretty,” the creature rasped out, the sound barely audible. “Who is the one guarding you, I wonder?” The woman came running across the lawn, and he withdrew further into the bushes. Power radiated off her in waves. This was not one he wanted to fight, even for the prophecy girl. She was much stronger than he.

  “Isn’t that Adele running over here like a mad woman?” Kat laughed at the sight before her.

  Ally looked up and saw it was her grandmother running towards them as if the hounds of hell where on her tail. “Gran?”

  “Girls, why don’t you come back inside?” Adele asked once she’d reached them.

  “Adele, is everything alright?” Kat asked.

  “Fine. It’s just getting cold.” Adele replied.

  Ally held back a scoff. Surely, she could’ve come up with something better that than that?

  “Chase was looking for you, Kat,” Adele added.

  “He can keep looking,” Kat replied. “My friend needs me.”

  Adele glanced at Ally. “Why? What’s wrong darling?”

  It was far too coincidental that she felt something was wrong, then Gran came running to find her. Ally didn’t even realise her grandmother could move that fast. Something was up and she intended to find out what. “Nothing’s wrong, Gran. I just thought I heard something.” Ally hoped she sounded convincing, but was painfully aware what a terrible
liar she was.

  Adele sensed the evil, it was close. She focused her attention back on the girls and gave an offhand reply. “A rabbit, they’re such noisy little creatures.”

  Ally and Kat shared a look. It seemed Kat was thinking the same as Ally. Adele was holding back.

  “You girls go inside. I’ll be there in a minute,” Adele said.

  Ally looked out towards the trees once more. She still saw nothing, but felt uneasy. The hairs on the back of her neck stood up, she was being watched.

  Adele covertly glanced back at the trees. Once the girls were inside she would take care of it. He wouldn’t make it back to his master, not if she could help it. She gave them both a gentle nudge in the right direction. “Off you go, I’ll be inside shortly.”

  Adele watched until they were back inside then turned around to deal with the evil lurking in her backyard. The air was so potent with its stench she choked on it.

  “Come out, creature,” she commanded as she stalked toward the bushes in which it lay. “Surrender and I’ll make this quick.”

  The bushes rustled, and the wind picked up around them. Adele knew it wouldn’t be that easy, but she had hoped. As a rule, vampires weren’t cowards against the immortals, but they didn’t just hand themselves over to die.

  Adele looked around to make sure no-one was watching. Everyone had moved to the tent for dancing or had wandered back to the house. She sent up a silent prayer of thanks that Ally and James picked a secluded place for their interlude. Adele didn’t want all the guests watching, and she didn’t have the strength to do a mass memory wipe. She studied the bush, deciding on her next move. It would have to be quick and effective. There was no time to waste. “Times up,” she said to the bush that concealed the vampire.

  Without warning, it jumped out of the bushes and ran for the road at the edge of the property, in the opposite direction of Adele.

  “Why do they always run?” She groaned and took off after him. She ran so fast she would appear to be a blur to anyone who saw her. Even so the creature was getting away. He turned to look back at her with a victorious smile. Adele was just as fast as the creature and stronger, but she had the disadvantage. She wouldn’t stray too far from Ally. He knew it and the gloating shone in his eyes.

 
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