Chapter 21: Things Buried in the Past

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Sanaya's P.O.V:

The confession threw me majorly off balance but before I could ask him more about it, the doorbell to our shared suite rang twice and then twice more after a short interval. Whoever was on the other side, sounded royally pissed off.

Lancelin strode through the doors to his room and with a glance behind his shoulder, told me to stay right where I was as he made his way to the door. However, ignoring his orders, I followed behind and stood behind him as Lance unlocked the door to a smirking Trevina and Acelin who had the look of a mix of anger and betrayal on his face.

"Ace?" Lance asked, sounding just as surprised to see him as Ace did.

Ace didn't talk, he simply looked at Lance with that betrayed look in his eyes, meanwhile Trevina looked at the brothers with unhidden glee, her hands folded right under her breasts so that they nearly spilled out of her low cut catsuit. On anyone else, it would've looked slutty, on Trevina, it looked graceful and sensuous.

"Such a nice reunion, isn't it Ace?" Trevina finally broke the silence with her beautiful voice as she twirled a lock of her glorious blonde hair between her fingers.

As if snapped out of a trance, Ace looked at her as if noticing her for the first time, and in that look, I saw something broken, something very old. Affection, perhaps? It was for the briefest moment but then it was replaced by anger, the emotions changing so soon, I thought I must be mistaken.

"It's Prince Acelin, Melinda. Be sure to remember that." Lancelin's voice held such a rough, inhuman note to it that all of us looked at him startled, including Trevina, who Lancelin had just called Melinda.

It was the same voice he'd used back in his office with those women, and just like that day, the temperature in the room dropped several degrees in the next few seconds. I would've thought Trevina wasn't scared of anything, but seeing the look on her face, she was damn near ready to faint. Or was she scared of something else? Then I remembered that Lancelin wasn't just any Incubus, he was their Prince. Of course, Trevina would be scared!

When I looked at Lance, I could see that his eyes were red. That means he must really be mad. But what was the connection between Ace and Trevina? I'd felt it before as well, when Lance had told me to get to Trevina before BlueStar could. I thought this was business rivalry, obviously, there's more to it than what meets the eye.

"Melinda, leave us." Acelin told her is a voice just as cold, and I had to blink several times so I could make sure that the person standing in front of me was indeed Acelin Eustis. I've never heard him use that voice, ever.

Melinda seemed to unfreeze from her spot and with a final glare at the brothers, she turned away from the door and went straight towards the elevator.

"Sana," I looked towards Lance when he called my name. "I'll need you to stay in your room for now. Ace and I need to talk."

I nodded in understanding, but just as I was about to turn and head to my room, Acelin's voice stopped me. "She can stay. It's best if she knows about what we're dealing with here." And then I heard the slamming of the door as Ace closed it shut behind him.

I stopped in my tracks, looking from Ace to Lance and back again, feeling like an intruder, but too curious to make the right choice and leave the room. Finally, Lance nodded his head and I felt relieved to have permission to stay. Whatever this was, Ace and Lance were both connected to Melinda and not in a good way.

"Trevina's real name is Melinda Valentino. She belongs to the Valentino Noble Clan." Lancelin said in a stiff voice. "And she was Ace's fiancée."

"Wait...fiancé?" My eyes widened as I realized what Lancelin was saying. She had left Ace for Lancelin!

"If you're thinking that I stole her from Acelin, then no. That's not what had actually happened. She decided to end her engagement so she could marry the future King, but she didn't get engaged to me, she simply decided to keep our relationship normal and not get into any formalities."

"But I had been young and stupidly in love with her." Ace said right after Lance finished his statement. "I wanted back what was mine...what I thought Lance had stolen from me. So I started to pursue her to get back together with me."

I was left speechless by that admission. For me, Ace was like the quintessential gentleman; he always did the right things, said the right things. But then an image flashed before my eyes, fifteen women standing in Lance's office and Lance looking pissed as hell as he faced them.

Love, I thought, wasn't always rational.

"Melinda did something to you, didn't she?" I had a feeling this story wasn't going to end well.

"She did." Lance nodded, folding his arms across his chest. "She had someone drain two women to death, two women who Ace had previously fed from, and framed it on him."

"It's one of our most absolute laws," Ace told us. "Never harm a donor. It's why we try not to feed from the same woman more than twice. We don't harm them. The two victims were drained completely of life energy and the only essence found on them was mine."

"Wait, essence?" I asked. "Like a DNA test?"

Lance nodded. "But you have to remember that we're talking about a century ago. Incubi have the ability to understand when a person is being fed on. The stronger the Incubus, the stronger their power of pinpointing the feeder. In this case, the experiment was done by my father, the King himself."

"So there was no way for him to get it wrong." I concluded.

Ace nodded with a humorless smile on his face. "My title of Prince was taken away from me. The nobility, my people, even my own parents...they all started to hate me for breaking their code of honor. And worst of all, several more Incubi broke the code and they were all sentenced to death. People questioned the King as to why I was still alive. And the King was forced to exile me from the kingdom."

"But thankfully," Lance cut in. "I was able to find one witness that had seen the donor alive after Ace had left her house and it was proof enough that Ace's exile was cancelled. Over time, our people were able to forgive him and forget about the incident."

"And yet," Ace told in a hard voice. "Here she is, back in our lives even after all the damage she's done."

I was thinking the same thing. Why did Lance order me to appoint her when she's done so much wrong and gotten away with it?

But then Lance smiled and it held a viciousness I've never seen before. "Oh, don't worry about her. Melinda will pay for everything she's done wrong...with interest."

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