Chapter 67

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Zero's memory was spotty. Charlotte knew that the moment she first saw him. His memories of the last five years were spotty. He remembered the Shizuka incident and Ichiru's death caused by Rido Kuran. He remembered drinking Kaname's blood and he remembered that Charlotte was, in fact, a vampire and not the human she pretended to be when they were kids.

He remembered his struggles with becoming a vampire, the very thing that was the centre of his hatred for the last five years. He remembered attending Cross Academy as a Day Class student during the day and being the school's prefect at night to keep the humans and vampire separate.

What he didn't remember was Yuki. He had no recollection of ever meeting her. The silent bond that they had wasn't in his memories. He didn't remember his pain from discovering that she was a pureblood. He remembered no love that he had felt for her before or the seemingly innate sense that he had to protect her... Well, the latter hadn't been tested yet, but Charlotte was sure that put in the situation, Zero would jump to Yuki's defence even if he didn't understand it.

Zero was aware that there were holes inside of his memory. He knew things were missing, but he was led to believe that his memory loss was due to some coma that had actually never happened. He couldn't even remember what the tattoo on his neck actually was—he still thought that it was some failed attempt to keep him from turning into a vampire.

"Stay out of my head," Zero whispered and pinched Charlotte's arm. She squeaked in surprise and slapped a hand over her mouth when all the hunters turned at her with annoyance. She gave them all a sheepish smile and gave a short wave.

"Miss Aido, since you insist on being part of this meeting, do you have any contributions to coming up with a way to ensure that Kaname really does give his heart to the furnace?" One of the leading hunters asked with a tight voice. He was glaring at her and Zero coughed to conceal his laughter.

Charlotte stood at once, "Of course I do. That's why I'm here." She grinned down at all the hunters who sat around the boardroom basically brainstorming even though they called it an 'open conversation' for the formal aspect of their paperwork.

"First off, I'd like to say that this meeting was completely unnecessary," she said after she cleared her throat. Some of the hunters bristled in their seats and a few of the mouthy ones began to protest, but she held up a hand for silence and they all quieted at once. "This was unnecessary because Kaname had initially intended to aid the hunters from the very beginning. For those of you who don't know, Kaname Kuran is actually a little over ten thousand years old... not nineteen. He's an awakened ancestor who regressed into a child in order to fill the role of Juri and Haruka Kuran's actual first child... who was named after him.

"Anyway, now that that explanation is out of the way..." She looked around the room to see if she still had their attention, and she did, more of them were paying attention to her diligently unlike before. "Kaname was around for the pureblood wars when vampires first surfaced. It was partially his idea to create the hunters to help aid the pacifist purebloods in getting rid of those vampires who wanted to enslave humanity-"

A man rudely cut her off, "We know this part already. We studied it before actually joining the ranks. Tell us something useful!"

She glared at him, "I'm getting there!" She took a deep breath to settle her sudden anger. She had so much power in her that the slightest upset could cause her to lose control over her new powers and strength. She took another calming breath and continued, "Now, the heart that finally stopped regenerating was a dear friend to Kaname—she beat him to starting up the hunters and giving her heart to supply their weapons; she did this so Kaname could live his life.

"And this leads me back to my very first point: Kaname really is going to put his heart in the furnace. He intended to do that from the very beginning but didn't get the chance. He now has the chance to do it, so there's nothing that's going to stop him; his mind won't change."

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