Chapter 82

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"It's going to be alright, my Darling," Nicolae whispered, caressing my cheek with his knuckle. I swallowed with the trepidation I was feeling, at Viktor's impending arrival the next morning. I nodded at him, putting on a brave face, but keeping him subtly from hearing it all in my mind. He leaned in and gave me a kiss, before wandering upstairs to his room. Drogo was putting Lorie down to bed for me; I didn't have the emotional or mental capacity to tell her a horror bedtime story tonight. "Night, Sash," Sebastian said, wrapping his arms around me. He was going to be here, kept hidden until the right moment. "Night, Seb, and thanks again, for all of your help prepping and getting ready for tomorrow," I whispered into his chest. "Of course, Sash. Good night," he kissed the top of my head and wandered off toward the guest room he had been staying in, since Christmas night.

I looked around me at the study, imagining Nicolae reading by the window, a fire crackling in the hearth, as Drogo and Peter played chess; my fingers reaching down to gently touch the board that was set, waiting for another evening if we lived through tomorrow. My heart was heavy and I felt lost as I looked around me, slowly meandering out of the study into the entryway; memories flashing before my eyes. The first day I had walked through the door with my massive suitcases, the almost tearful goodbyes when I had left for New York, the happy reunion when Nicolae had brought me home, the simple everyday moments of kisses and hugs goodbye shared there, on the doorstep. I wandered down the manor hallway, seeing ghost memories of happy moments, laughter, smiles, love. I could see the brothers leaning against my door jam, as I reached out and turned the knob to my room, swinging the black door open.

My chest was tight, my heart beating frantically, my breathing hitched, as I looked around the room, remembering it all. Drogo's possessive kiss against the bed post, Nicolae's loving care as he washed me in the tub, Peter's tender caress after my nightmares. I breathed them all in; we had spent the previous night together here, on my great black bed. Their scent once again drowned out Viktor's but I was having the hardest time shaking his icy hold over my frantically beating heart. I knew that I wasn't going to live through his vengeance on me, if I failed the following day; all would be lost. But could I actually do it? Could I succeed, or was I to remain his forever? The despair welled up in my heart, as I collapsed against the post of my great black bed; clinging to it like the only thing that was keeping me from drowning, in the icy waters of doubt. At least if I was dead, I wouldn't have to bear the eternity of his cruelty. But he might not kill me; in reality he would more than likely, lock me away forever, to bear his brood while he tortured me every night; no hope, despair, grief, abandon, sob.

My balled fist crossed my chest to hold myself from the bleeding heart within me, the other clung to the post of my bed, as tears slipped out of my eyes; I was so afraid and lost. I had never not had a tyrant master. I had never not been owned. I had never not been used. Only here, had I ever had love, tenderness and care. But it was about to come crashing down around me; Viktor was coming. He was almost here. I closed my eyes, thinking about all the love I had been shown here. My lips parted and I breathed out a gasp, as the magical notes flowed out over the manor's halls. I wiped at the tears flowing down my face. My bleeding, weeping heart pulled me to turn and leave my room, my feet floating across the manor, following the magic of the pied piper, being spun by Peter's piano; the magic there in the piece the piper had composed for him. The piece he was playing for me at that moment. Peter was calling me to him; my dark angel watching over me, feeling my despair.

The music weaving it's hypnotic spell, seeped it's way down into my heart, through the very cracks that had split me open; the ones I was bleeding from. The cracks of my fear, my doubt, my despair. Each step I took, toward the source of the music, placed me farther and farther into a trance; calling me to him, carrying me away on it's complex, hauntingly beautiful melody. Another step, another piece of the stanza; like the music was matching my ascent to my dark angel. I floated down the hall, my eyes seeing nothing, as my mind followed the musical spell he was weaving in my heart. I stood outside his door, frozen as I listened to him playing for me, beckoning me come to him. Your heart calls to me in the silence. Your tears, more beautiful than anything I could have composed. Come to me, my Muse. Hide not the beauty of your heart from mine eyes; for I would gaze upon them for all of eternity, if you would not but let me. So beautiful is the heart, that has awoken within you. The heart that completes mine.

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