Chapter Twenty Seven: Not human, not monsters

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It had taken a few days to become adjusted to their new living arrangements. The house felt cramped, and the air was thick with tension. Victoria had isolated herself the minute she had joined the household, and nobody seemed to want to branch the ever-going distance that separated them all.

Annalise certainly wasn't going to be the one to do it.

These vampires were meant to be decades old, and yet here she was in the midst of five of them, all acting like angsty teenagers. She thought better of them, if she were honest. Annalise guessed, no matter how much changed, fundamentally, humans would always be the same.

She was sitting awkwardly between Victoria and Dawn in the living room. Twiddling her thumbs, Annalise longed for something to do, other than this. The air was so thick with unresolved problems, it felt like a ticking time bomb. With one wrong word, breathe or movement it would explode into tiny pieces. Shattering the place she had begun to call home.

It was blatantly obvious, despite the peace between them all, Victoria and Dawn still vemonanatly hated each other. Dawn was looking outside the window, a vicious scowl marring her beautiful face. While Victoria absently picked at her manicured fingernails.

'This isn't awkward at all,' Annalise thought sarcastically.

Just when she had given up all hopes of saviour, Cassius burst through the living room door, slamming it open. The sudden noise snapped Victoria and Dawn out of their brooding, both of them snapping their heads to the side to see who it was.

"Cassius!" Annalise called excitedly, relieved to finally have someone to talk too. He glanced at her momentarily but immediately looked away. Ignoring her completely, he spoke,"I found something,".

Victoria stood up, as fast as lightning, stepping up to Cassius. Her eyes were wide open, as she reached her hands up to grasp him but then stopped midway."You're serious?" She asked shakily. 

Cassius nodded sullenly, as black strand of hair falling into his face. Annalise shot up, in almost exact imitation of Victoria. He found something! Of course he would, Cassius is a genius. Budding hope grew in Annalise, like a freshly bloomed rose. Sweet and stunning.

"I can't believe you managed it!" Annalise rejoiced, beaming at him widely. Cassius seemed utterly unimpressed and shot her a look that said 'Really?'. She shook her head disbelievingly, as she heard Dawn step up besides her.

"I knew we could trust you, nerd," Dawn laughed, reaching out to clap Cassius on the back, who easily dodged the oncoming slap. A thought popped into Annalise's head and straight away, she walked out of the living room. Leaving behind the bustle of excited chatter.

She needed to tell Eugene!

Annalise scurried up the stairs, missing steps in her haste. She ran past Raul, who was just coming out of the guest room and headed straight for the main bedroom. Bashing the door open, she paused when she entered the room.

No one was there.

Where could Eugene be, she thought as she circled the room curiously. There was the sound of splashing water and Annalise jolted to the en-suite. The door was in the corner of the bedroom, tucked away so that you could only see it if you were in the room itself. It was hung open slightly, light from the bathroom illuminated the dark corner.

Slowly Annalise crept up to the en-suite, her thoughts were so consumed with the recent news that she hadn't thought about what exactly he was doing in there. The minute she slowly cracked open, she was hit with hot lavender smelling steam.

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