Vampire Breed, page 30part #4 of Kiera Hudson Series One Series
But be careful, Kiera, of who you befriend and love on your journey, for it is said that if Elias Munn can get the half-breed to love him, as a father, or a brother, or a lover, then just like his first love – he would have taken your heart as his own and he will be given the power to choose which race lives and which race dies.
I have nothing more to say and I know that I will be dead very soon. Therefore, whatever decision you make won’t affect me – but, Kiera, it will change you. Whichever race you decide to live, will be the species that you solely become. You will no longer be a half-breed – you will either be a human or a Vampyrus. As for Kayla and Isidor, your decision will permanently change them, too.
I do not have to tell you that the burden on you is a great one. The fate of two entire races lies in your hands. The decision to destroy an entire race is not an easy one – so choose wisely, Kiera Hudson.
Doctor Thaddeus Ravenwood
Trembling with fear, anger, or maybe revulsion, I clawed the pages that Ravenwood had written on from the book. I screwed them into a ball with my hands.
“What’s wrong?” Potter asked. “What did it say?”
Without looking at him, I held out my hand and said, “Give me your lighter. ”
“Why?” he said.
I looked at him and his face was a mask of confusion. “Just give me the lighter!” I spat.
Rummaging in his trouser pocket, he handed me the Zippo lighter and said, “Kiera, what did the message say?”
Ignoring him and with a trembling hand, I held the lighter to the corner of the pages and watched them start to burn. If I destroyed them, then perhaps those words had never been written and the burden would pass me by.
“But what about the code?” Kayla asked, watching me drop the ball of burning pages to the floor.
“There is no code!” I shouted at her, and at once regretted it.
“So what was the goddamn point in coming all the way out here?” Seth barked.
Looking at him straight in the eyes, I raised my finger and said, “Don’t even start on me, Lycanthrope! I’m so not in the mood for you!”
“But Kiera,” Isidor said, stamping out the remains of the blackened pages, “You said we needed the code. ”
“How many ways have I got to say this?” I yelled at him. “There is no code – I’m the freaking code!”
Unable to say another word, I raced from the laboratory, through the basement, and up into the house. Ravenwood lay face-up on the floor.
“Why me?” I shouted down at him.
I stepped over his corpse and ran from the house. The sky was almost black with clouds and the snow fell harder now in thick, white torrents. With my breath escaping my mouth in wispy streams, I headed through the snow. On the other side of the garden fence, I saw something big move behind the tree that I had seen earlier.
“Who’s there?” I called out.
There was a howling sound, but I couldn’t tell if this was the wind of a wolf close by.
The movement came again. I headed towards the tree and as I got closer with my heart pounding in my chest, I saw who was hiding there.
“Nik?” I whispered. “What are you doing here?”
Without saying a word, he met my stare with his brilliant yellow eyes, then he was gone, bounding away until I lost sight of him in the falling snow.
“Who were you talking to?” someone asked over my shoulder.
I spun round to find Potter standing behind me. “No one, I guess,” glancing back through the snow in the direction that Nik had bounded away.
“What’s going on?” Potter asked, and placed one hand on my shoulder.
Brushing it away, I said, “I need some time alone. ”
“Why?” Potter pushed. “Has it got something to do with what was written in that book?”
“Please, Potter,” I begged, staring into his eyes which were as dark as the clouds above us. “I just need some time. ”
“But that’s something we don’t have,” he said. “I need to go after Luke and you need to get to the -”
“The Hollows,” I finished for him. “You’re not the only one who says I should be down there. ”
Shaking snow from his jet-black hair, Potter looked up into the battered looking sky and said, “It’s going to be night soon, and with this storm, I don’t think any of us will be going anywhere – it wouldn’t be safe. Besides I have something I need to do before I set off to rescue Luke. ”
“And what’s that?” I asked, and for the first time ever in Potter’s company I felt the smallest pang of suspicion. But I strangled it deep inside of me.
Looking at me through the falling snow, Potter said, “You’re not the only one around here who has secrets they don’t want to share. ” He then turned and headed back towards the house where the others gathered in the doorway.
“Where are you going?” I called after him.
“Like I said, it’s too dangerous to travel tonight,” he called back. “We go at first light. ”
I caught up with him, my boots crunching in the snow. Taking Potter by the arm, I said, “Okay, but I don’t want to stay in that house. Not with Ravenwood. ”
As if searching my eyes with his, he said, “We’ll stay in the hangar. ” Then he was gone, making his away across the snow-covered front yard, towards the facility that loomed in the distance.
Looking at the others huddled in the doorway, I called to them and said, “This way!”
Wind screamed across the open plain that lay before the giant hangar, and all of us pulled our clothes tightly together to protect ourselves from the driving snow. Seth and Eloisa didn’t appear to be bothered by the snow and they followed us at a distance, walking upright as the bitter wind blew hard at them.
We reached the facility doors, which loomed high above us. They were slightly apart down the centre and a strip of yellow and black tape flapped in the wind. Across the tape were the words, “KEEP OUT. BIOHAZARD”. Undeterred by the warning, Potter tore the tape free and slipped between the gap in the doors.
Before following him inside, Kayla gripped my arm and said, “Kiera, this is where we were kept, right? Where they did those tests on us?”
Clawing my fringe from my eyes, I looked at her and said, “I think so. ”
“Then should we really be going back in there?” Isidor spoke up. “Look it says to stay out – Biohazard. ”
“There is no hazard to us, Isidor, I promise,” I tried to reassure him. “The Vampyrus think there is a virus that’s going to kill them, but there isn’t – not really. It’s the infection that your father took from my leg and spiked the DNA formula with. It kills the half-breeds that the Vampyrus are trying to mass produce, but not us. ”
“Are you sure?” Kayla asked, not sounding convinced.
“I’m sure,” I told her and slipped through the gap in the doors.
The facility was vast, seeming to stretch away into the distance for miles. Emergency lights flickered overhead. I could see that stairs led away immediately to my right up to a metal landing that lined the inner walls of the hangar and branched off into different rooms and corridors.
“Does any of this seem familiar to you?” Potter asked.
“Not at the moment,” I whispered back. “How about you two?” I quizzed, looking at Kayla and Isidor. They both shook their heads as they glanced about.
Jack Seth and Eloisa stepped in from the cold, and both stood brushing the snow from their hair and clothes.
“Another detour?” Seth asked Potter.
“Just for tonight,” he said. “The storm is too bad and it will be night soon. ”
“Are you sure they’re the only reasons?” Seth pushed.
Looking away, Potter said, “What other possible reasons could there be? Now let’s have a look to see if we can’t find somewhere to bed do
I looked at Seth and Eloisa and they shared a knowing glance with each other.
Potter led us up the stairs and through a maze of corridors and passageways. Pipes ran along the walls and some of them hissed steam in short, smoky bursts. The corridors were lit from above by a series of neon lights and water dripped from the ceiling and ran down the walls. The facility looked as if it had quickly fallen into disrepair.
Stopping abruptly, Potter turned to face the wall. He pressed a series of buttons set into a panel on the wall next to a door. A red light flashed on and off, barring us entry to whatever lay on the other side of the door. Sucking in air, Potter sighed, rolled up his sleeve and smashed his fist into the panel. Sparks shot from behind it, then the door slid up and opened.
Turning to face us, Potter said, “Follow me,” and then slipped through the gap he had opened.
The door slid closed behind us with a hiss. I looked around to discover that we were now standing in a room that was oblong in shape. Down the length of one of the walls were two windows, which both looked out into a large glass container filled with water.
Potter glanced at me, raised an eyebrow, and then led us to the first viewing window, where we all peered into the murky water on the other side of the glass. I immediately jumped backwards with fright and had to stifle a scream. Behind the window floated a white thing. Initially it looked human with two arms and two legs. But it was its face that was all wrong. It looked like a disfigured version of Isidor.
The head of this half-breed, although similar in appearance to Isidor, was bloated and misshapen, elongated and stretched. It had two black eyes that swivelled blindly in two sunken sockets. Its mouth was huge and open like a flapping gash. But this was nothing compared to the umbilical cord that snaked from an open wound on the crown of its head. The cord coiled upwards and was attached to an underwater panel that flashed with a series of lights.
“What is it?” Seth asked, and I caught a smile tug at the corners of his mouth as he glanced at Isidor.
Knowing that Seth was probably taking some perverse satisfaction from this, Isidor swallowed hard and walked closer to the window. “I’m surprised you don’t recognise it,” he whispered, as if fearing that he might wake the half-breed on the other side of the glass. “It’s meant to be me. ”
TIM OROURKE SERIES:
Other author's books:
- MoonlightUnscathedWitchDead WolfVampire ShiftVampire WakeDead WaterDead Angels
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