"I'm not predeterminationally-abled for nothing," she said as she dug two bottles of fingernail polish and some cotton from her pocket. She hopped on the bed and set them up to paint each other's toenails, patting the bed for Myst to come sit. Myst had missed this little ritual, but she had no interest just now. Instead she crossed to the window and said, "Nïx, why didn't you come for me? You knew how to find me."
"You were fated to spend that time with Wroth."
Wroth. Who had found her so lacking that he'd needed to change her.
What had he seen that disgusted him so much? She'd wracked her brain for the last three days, but found nothing she'd be truly ashamed of, certainly nothing that would make a vampire lose his freaking mind. "He's out there right now." Myst stared out into the fog-shrouded yard. "Watching this house, waiting for a chance to take me again. But if I stay behind the wraiths, then I'm just as contained here as I was there."
"Without the weakness of the chain, you could fight him, yes?" Nïx asked. "I even imagine kicking some vampire tail might be good for you."
A few moments later, Regin popped her head in. "Cara and I are going out to canoodle ghouls. You in?"
Myst frowned, then turned to Nïx. "Any reason I shouldn't?"
She bit her lip, staring at the ceiling as if trying to recall a memory when it was just the opposite. "No, I think it would be just the thing."
Myst nodded slowly. "Yeah, I think I could use a little goo."
Regin beamed, then bounded across the landing to scream downstairs, "Myst is back online!"
Ready to fight, needing it, she quickly dressed as Nïx did a buff-job on her neglected sword. Myst had no doubt Wroth would be out there watching her and that she would sense him every hour. How long would he follow his "tarnished" Bride? she wondered, but she knew the answer, had felt the wild emotion roiling within him. He'd follow forever.
Wroth crept among the shadows as Myst split up from Regin and Cara at a sprawling cemetery. Myst easily vaulted to the top of a mausoleum to observe the field below her, where ghouls snapped and clashed against each other or lazed in the dampness of the night.
He was spellbound, watching as she rested on the edge of the roof, perched down as a gargoyle might. Her eyes swirled silver and her claws curled into the clay tile. She was clearly eager for the kill but waited, studying them. This was the first time he'd seen her in days.
After Wroth had found her gone from Blachmount, he'd traced to her eerie home, but found it had just gotten eerier. Ghostly, howling creatures in ragged red cloth circled the manor like a tornado. He'd shrugged and traced to her room, but the things caught him. They had a grip he couldn't have imagined, and when he'd finally landed, his lesson had been learned. He rotated his arm, pleased he'd finally been able to force it back into its socket.
Those beings circled the house to protect it, and did so without cease and without fail, as he could well attest to. But the sentinel that protected Myst from threats like Ivo kept Wroth from her as well. Myst stayed behind them for night upon night, yet now he'd finally found her outside of their protection, no doubt waiting for her sisters to return so they could attack.
But dawn was coming soon and he needed to -
She leapt from the roof, drawing her sword from her back sheath as she dropped into the middle of the group of ghouls. There were at least fifty of them.
"What the f**k are you doing?" he bellowed, tracing to her side, unsheathing his own sword.
"This isn't happening," she said to herself. "You're not going to ruin my personal life and my fast-track career, Wroth."
"But in the middle?"
"I'm enraged enough to do this. You have no idea" - she struck out, slicing a ghoul from crotch to neck - "how much I need this."
"I do have an idea." A perfect one. He'd felt her rage and her need to fight from inside him. And yet he'd told her that as his wife she would never again fight.
"You had better leave, because once I finish with them, I won't stop there."
"I deserve your anger. I've wronged you and seek to make amends." He wasn't optimistic about his chances for that. She couldn't be all things to him already and then forgiving on top of that.
"You think?" When one ghoul's claw came close to his neck, he leapt back and she snapped, "Don't let them scratch you!"
"Concerned for me, Myst?" He didn't dare hope.
"Of course I don't want you to get scratched." She eyed him. "Vampires are easier to kill."
"If I help you will you speak with me?"
"Don't need your help." And she didn't. She was merrily felling them one after another with a skill that awed him, her sword flying so fast it was barely visible.
"Then you'll have to listen here," he grated, digging into the fight with her. "I'd had five years of torment. I'd had a hell of wanting you and feared you would leave me at the first opportunity. Then I had dreams of your memories." These ghouls were irritating him, especially when they got between him and Myst while he was trying to convince her about something so critical. He began killing them more quickly. "In each one you were evil...a seductress."
"Still am, Wroth." She kicked a ghoul in the belly, freeing her sword from his chest.
"No, you're not - "
"Duck!" Her sword whistled over his head to decapitate a ghoul behind him. "Yeah, well, as I recall, every sunset I asked you about your dreams and you brushed away my concerns."
He slew two with one sword thrust. "I know. I should have asked you, because all those excruciating scenes of you...doing things were all out of context." When the largest ghoul out there howled and attacked him, Wroth stabbed the thing in the face, dropping it. She raised her eyebrows as if impressed, then scowled, remembering herself.