An Audience with a King Part 2

As soon as the first drop touched Victoria’s lips, it was as if she was feeding directly from a vessel. The world exploded into a kaleidoscope of color, and it was all she could do from finishing it off in a single gulp.

“An excellent vintage as always,” Lord William said. “I am running out of superlatives to express my admiration for your collection. I suppose I shall have to invent some more.”

"It is nothing to invest into, all I need is your gratitude," Gareth said as he smiled and put down the goblet. "So you two must be curious why I ask for your presence at a time like this. The reason is that I fear time is repeating itself, and I don't want it to."

“Oh?” Lord William said, cocking an eyebrow. “How so?”

"The Axis powers have Necromancy and demons on their side,” Gareth said. “If they learned the power of the Cambions then they would start breeding them for war. They would have an army that would be loyal, obedient, and powerful. Not only that if the necromancer gets strong enough he won't just have power over the dead, but as well as the living."

Gareth shivered at past horrors that could return.

“It would be a good opportunity for Necrosis to do so, given the humans are so divided,” Lord William said. “I doubt we could call upon them for aid, as was done in that war so long ago.”

“The Germans are the most likely to possess such knowledge,” Victoria said. “I think we should contact our kind in Germany and warn them to keep a lookout for such a thing. They won’t act against the failed painter, but I can’t imagine they would allow something like this to happen.”

"If only we could stop the necromancer, have something that would change his mind," Gareth said, looking at William. "How much do you trust Victoria, old friend?"

The elder British vampire looked at her, an intense look in his eyes that she could not identify.

“In a matter such as this, I trust her completely,” he said, looking back at Gareth.
Garth looked over at Victoria and said, “How much do you know about the Blood War?"

“Lord William told me of a time when we openly ruled the humans until they rebelled,” she said. “Some of the humans learned necromancy, and those necromancers created the Cambions, which were used against our kind. Some humans were repulsed by what the necromancers had done, and allied themselves with us to end the rebellion.”

"And from that, the humans got what they wanted,” Gareth said. “I was one of our greatest warriors in the war. However, after every battle with the Cambions themselves, I learned that they wanted only one thing: the freedom to live how they wanted to live. They never wanted to be born just for war.

“I encountered a Dark One, one of the most powerful of the Cambions. I gave her a choice: she could die on the battlefield or come with me. She went with me. What happened between us would send an outrage for the rest of our kind."

He walked over to a curtain covering a portrait, he removed it to reveal a painting of Gareth looking like a handsome young man, beside him was a beautiful woman with unholy blue eyes. Sitting between them was a little girl. She had a perfect mix of features of the two.

Lord William stepped over to it, looking it over with a critical eye.

“Exquisite,” he said. “Yet this is the first time I have heard of this. Why reveal it now?”

"Because my daughter married a man by the name of Daniel Michaelson, this man, later on, became Necrosis. Does his last name ring any bells for you two?"

“Yes, his descendant James is among the group I serve with,” Victoria said. “Lord William theorized men such as Necrosis are driven by a great personal loss. Is that true with him?”

"Daniel was a simple man, a warrior,” Gareth said. “He didn't know what my daughter was, he simply thought she was a human being. So when she fell asleep, without her knowing she entered a slumber. Daniel thought she died because she had no heartbeat. So he turned to necromancy, and became the necromancer known as Necrosis."

“Even if this was revealed to him, I very much doubt it would blunt his drive to ‘resurrect’ her,” Lord William said. “After 300 years, I think the only thing that would slake his desire would be seeing her again in the flesh.”

He looked back at the elder vampire.

“Yet I suspect she is no longer with us,” he said, the unspoken question hanging heavy in the air.

"Victoria, I have a mission for you," he said as he pulled out a small vial of blood and slid it her direction.

"You need to give this to my daughter, Annabelle,” he said. “This blood isn't normal blood, it is the blood of a Cambion, and it shall awaken her. Now I must warn you, once she is awakened, she will go into a blood frenzy, seeking the closest source of blood. That is your mission, from me."

He looked at William.

"And I know she is alive, her mother has been watching her,” he said. “It's thanks to Ella that I know all about this. William let all the Vampire lords that the Axis are enemies of our kind. Any of our kind that works with them will be considered a traitor of the race."

“One question, Lord Gareth,” she said. “Where is Annabelle now?”

"Inside a coffin….in Necrosis’ lair,” he said. “His lair will be in the land of the dead."

“Understood,” she said. “Am I to bring her to you afterward?”

"I will come to you afterward I get the message to the Dark Night Court that we are enemies with the Axis powers," he said.

“As for your warning to our kind against aiding the Axis, I suggest you put out the word yourself, Lord Gareth,” William said. “While my voice carries great weight among our kind, it may appear to some that I am exceeding my authority. Some may ignore your decree, some may even aid the Axis out of spite. But if it comes from you, there can be no question about its authority.”

Gareth looked at William and thought about it.

"Maybe you're right,” he said. “I haven't done anything like that since the humans entered the new world. In that case, I shall let all the Vampire Lords in my court know, and from there our kin will know, we are with the Alliance."

*****

The vampires exchanged farewells, and Victoria transformed herself to begin the journey back to the base.

As she flew back, she detected another nearby, and she could only assume it was Lord William.

*****

She landed on the island housing the base but away from the base itself. Another bat landed and transformed, as she expected, into Lord William.

“I wanted to see your lodging,” he said and looked it over for a moment.

“Military men may be clever on the battlefield, but wholly unimaginative when it comes to lodging,” he said. “Should you wish to return to your home, I can easily arrange it.”

“Thank you, but no,” she said. “This conflict is expected to last three years at most, yes? To our kind, that is nothing but a drop in the ocean of time.”

He smiled.

“You have the soul of a poet,” he said.

“Flatterer,” she said. “Is that all you wanted? To see my current situation?”

“No, but I could not discuss it on Lord Gareth’s ship,” he said. “I would urge you to be cautious in your dealings should you encounter a Cambion. I myself have never faced one myself, but I know of those who have, and…”

He shuddered.

“They are not to be trifled with,” he said. “Do everything you can to ensure your return.”

“I often do, Lord William,” she said.

“Very well,” he said. “I look forward to your return.”

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