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- From Here... (Part One) -

Mirabelle wasn't able to sleep that night, for her sadness and anger were too large for her to bear and smother.  She stood up and went to her balcony for a walk. Her large, light pink sleeping gown was  gently touching the ground. Gentle... A word Mirabelle did not know.

"Almost sixteen years later, you come to haunt me once more..." She sadly said, with her eyes closed. "Yet I wanted to have killed you prior to your birth, something didn't allow me to do it, and it wasn't Ushuriel... Why?"

She looked to the forest, sadder than she had ever been.

"These trees had born all my secrets." She said. "They gave me home and peace of mind... Gave me my life. Gave me freedom and salvation... From the Inquisition's flames."

She closed her eyes, and images came into her mind. Her story began six centuries before, when she was an innocent young lady at the age of sixteen. She wasn't Norwegian by birth, but Scottish; she was born in a Celtic community that no longer exists. Her people perished long ago, and all their belongings were claimed by Mother Nature.

She was once a member of the Kiri community, which we know nowadays as Warlocks. Back in those days, their powers were related to Mother Nature - they were able to heal all living things, to grow plants wherever they were and restored the forests which suffered in the hands of Men; they usually lived much longer than their human counterparts, which meant probably two or even three more centuries of life spam. A life dedicated to Nature.

This was the way it used to be - and it would have endured, if some Kiri hadn't chosen to walk another path, much darker and tortuous than the one they judged 'beaten'. It began with what we nowadays refer to as 'Alchemy': they did demonstrations of equal trades from a cheap material to a rare, expensive one, along with other tricks. Some got really interested in that art, but most condemned their actions.

Those Alchemists, mere mortals who tried to replicate the magic they witnessed, started being persecuted by those who didn't agree - most were members of the Church and the Inquisition,  who wished to exterminate all forms of belief and truth which were not the same as theirs. Mirabelle remembers well the day the persecution started.

First, they came after her friends, people who were close to her; she remembers the priests breaking into their humble homes with countless questions; they destroyed books, set fire in everything they considered unholy, and took the Kiri into custody.

Tears were falling from Mirabelle's face, who refused to open her eyes. It took just a few years for Mirabelle to lose all her friends. Months later, her family was also taken into custody. She was twenty one when she decided it was time to flee to the North. It was time for her to leave the northernmost part of Spain, which we now know as Galicia, and travel to the Scandinavian countries an hide. Hide... Forever.

"Religion is quite an ironic concept..." She said to herself, without noticing someone in the room. "It means, in Latin, 'reconnect'. However, never have I seen something so strong that could really tear families apart. If this is what they call 'reconnection', then..."

She had long, straight, beautiful red hair. Her eyes weren't magenta - they were light green, and had such beautiful shine that any man could really fall for her.  She was wearing a long, pale blue gown and no shoes; she wasn't rich at the time, but it never mattered - she used to be a happy woman, until they came into her life.

"I was so naive..." Mirabelle moaned.

She was running; she had only a silver dagger and a small leather bag with her. The sun was setting in front of her, and her countenance was pure fright. She looked back to see the flames consuming her home and to hear her parents screaming for their lives. She could hear children crying and horses coming after her.
They would catch her in a matter of time. Soon or later, they'd see her foot prints on the grassy ground, or even some of her hair, whose delicate threads were gently floating on the wind.

Her feet were aching; her sight was getting blurred, and she felt as tired as she had never been before. She found a strange caravan in the middle of the dark woods. At first, she was so frightened she couldn't even walk towards it. However, the fear of being caught by the Inquisition made her approach the caravan.

They were slightly copper-skinned, and they seemed to be rehearsing to some sort of a show. Knife throwers, contortionists, fire eaters, all sorts of artists. However, it was the male fortune-teller who attracted her attention. He was tall and muscular, copper-skinned as the others, but seemed quite pale if compared to his comrades. His teeth, specially the canines, seemed sharper, and his fangs were discretely coming out of his mouth. He had short, straight dark hair and amazingly beautiful dark eyes.

"Who are you?" She asked.

"I am he who they know as Ushuriel." He answered with an accent Mirabelle did not know. "And you are... Mirabelle, right?"

She got really surprised.

"How did you...?" Started asking, but Ushuriel interrupted her.

"Fear not." He answered with a seducing smile, standing um from his chair. She realized he was almost two meters tall. "I bear special powers, just like you. However, my power's source comes from a different world than ours..."

"Are you...?" She started to get frightened. "An...Undead?"

"A Vampire, to be more accurate." He answered politely. "And I've got to say I was expecting you..."

"Me?!" She was both surprised and disgusted. "I am no servant of the Devil! Stay back!"

"Either you accept me as your humble servant, or die in the hands of the so called 'Will of God'." Ushuriel replied serious, referring to the Inquisition. "You've got nothing to lose - your people is dying, and you are more likely to be the only survivor of your race. As your servant, I'll do you no harm and I'll aid in your quest for vengeance if you ever come to desire it. What do you say?"

He got closer to her, and she could swear he looked oddly handsome and scary.

"Do we have a deal?"

She looked back, and realized he was right - there was no point for her to return to die. Yet she knew she wouldn't be on the light path designed by her gods, she no longer had a choice. Either she accepted, or she would perish with everyone else.

"Alright..." She said. "We have a deal."

Ushuriel knelt on the ground in a sign of respect.

"Very well, Mirabelle Hayes. I, Ushuriel, known as 'Raven Master' in the Vampire core, accept to be you humble servant as long as my undead body and soulless existence stays in this world. I ought to protect you, Mirabelle Hayes, my Warlock against any foes, and serve you as long as you desire."

"W-warlock?" She asked, confused. "But my race is..."

"Warlocks no longer walk on the path of the Kiri." Ushuriel rapidly replied as he stood up. "Later on, I shall explain everything. For now, we shall enter the wagons and get out of this country. The Eastern and Northern Europe shall gives us refuge - there are plenty of us there, many of which are elder Warlocks, the ones who may answer all your questions."

Mirabelle looked at her room nowadays - messy, with all sorts of knowledge sources spread all over the floor; these were the rewards of that deal. She had more power than she could ever dream about. The price, however, was her soul.

She met Camazotz, the Maya Bat-God, weeks later; he made it official that Ushuriel had to serve Mirabelle and satisfy all her desires - in most meanings. The wicked God had only one condition - they couldn't engage into a deeper relationship. Otherwise, whatever came out of it had to be given to Camazotz to be used against humankind.

"Wow, Belle!" Ushuriel barged in, taking Mirabelle away from her ocean of memories. "What a mess in there! You should let me clean this place..."


He started to pick some papers and organize them, when he saw some floating books; they moved as Mirabelle moved her eyes.

"No need of that." She replied. "I sometimes prefer the mess rather than organization - sometimes, it is on the worst scenario you find the best answers to the most difficult questions."

"As you always did..." He said with a mischievous smile. "Speaking of mess... That's what we did to the whole hierarchy, right?"

"You did." She replied. "I'd rather not talk about this issue."

"Oh, Belle..." He said as he came closer to her. "We both wanted to..." He became slightly sad as he finally got closer to her body. "I had never been so happy... I wish you'd stop punishing me for bringing someone who would have made us happy. I allowed myself to change, to adapt to that situation, my dear, and I thought you'd be the one who'd fight for this kid..."

He embraced her shoulder, and she placed her hand in his forearms, closing her eyes.

"Will you ever care about me, Mirabelle?" Ushuriel asked, sadder as a Vampire had never been.

To be Continued...

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