She had killed a man with her bare hands.
As the thought repeated in her mind over and over again. She sunk down on the floor in horror as to what she had done. She had really killed him. But if she hadn't killed him he would have killed her. It was to be killed or kill and she had picked the first one to save herself. Her eyes slowly moved to look at the body as it roamed before it came to settle on the watch which was lying idly after the fight they had.
Crawling on the floor to pick it up, she saw there was hardly six minutes left before the time of two complete hours. The guards would be switching their positions soon and she had to get out in time. While getting in she had Dutan or so she thought until realizing he was actually a switcher and not the man she knew to be. Not sparing a second more, she stood up to go back to the body.
Bending down she took hold of the man's leg and dragged him to a corner. Going to the place where she had placed her lantern she took it out after climbing the ladder to place it where it originally belonged with the others before she and the man had entered the storage room. Beliving as there was nothing more she could do, she went to the door to place her ear first at the door. One more minute. There was one more minute before the guards would be replaced with the previous ones who had guarded the door.
Hearing no sound, she decided to peek out of the door through the keyhole. Strangely though this was the room that was not allowed to step in, the door wasn't locked which made her question if the elder councilmen had believed that none would come to enter or if it was over-exaggerated to not be stepped into.
She saw one of the guards back as they stood quietly and when the time finally came, they moved started to walk. Once they had taken the turn, Vivian took it as her cue.
Placing her hand on the knob of the door, which moved down, she stepped into the light which hurt her light making her flinch but there was no time for it. She couldn't lose time to only be caught. She walking straight and with one glance to her left where she saw the guardsmen walking she jumped right out of the window.
The fall was painful but not as much as it would have impacted her if she were her human self. Pureblooded vampires were stronger than the usual vampires, and Vivian was never turned but was the pureblooded vampire who had returned back to her former self.
Her chest hurt along with her body after it kept hitting the ground and the wall of the storage room. She didn't know where to go from here with her blood-covered clothes. Just as she was weighing on her decision with her mind slow due to wha she had done, Hueren came running out of the council building to catch her in time.
His eyes widened at the sight of her, "Lady Vivian, what happened?" he looked around to see the councilman who had accompanied her, to ask, "Where is Dutan?" and she had no response to it. He frowned when he continued to look at her, her hand that was covered in blood and her hair messed which looked as if she had fallen asleep in a bed there but he doubted that was what she had done.
"Lady Vivian?" he asked worried that she hadn't spoken a word nor had she looked at him.
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"Senior, Leo has gone to attend the court proceeding. The man double-crossed us I think and he has been caught," Hueren began to fill her in as to what happened during the time she was in the storage room. The wind of the snow and the cold started to sound like a blizzard that was occurring to come near the forest which would soon hit the place near the council.
"That's not possible!" she exclaimed. No, what had happened when she wasn't here? "Tell me everything."
"Lancelot, the switcher, he was the one to have killed Maximillian."
"He is being framed! We need to help him, Hueren," Vivian felt her eyes go alive before she came to start to cough, her chest beginning to hurt like before but she didn't heed to it.
"The court council began right before I helped you and Dutan with the deviation from the guards. We can't have you go in there like this. You need new clothes," he said looking at her dress, "There is some spare of Sir Leonard's. You can change to them. If someone asks we can tell them that the water broke in the basin."
"What about Lancelot?" she stopped the man when he took a step forward ready to leave with her.
"Lady Vivian you need to understand that there is nothing we can do for him," Hueren's brows furrowed as he tried to explain the current situation of the council, "The man is a switcher, a creature we aren't aware and someone who killed a fellow councilman. Even if you do go and try to give him justice, the man will never gain one."
"But he was helping Sister Isabelle. He didn't kill anyone who was innocent," her voice came rushed. She had sworn during the time of her entrance that she would do her best to save innocent lives but that was slipping right through her fingers.
Hueren gave out a small smile which was sad. He shook his head for her to continue to look at him so that he could help her help the man, "He didn't even kill Mr. Gibbs. It was Dutan!"
"Dutan?" Heuren tried to grasp the circumstances and then it dawned on him as bitterness formed, "Is it him whom you killed?"
"The switcher killed him this morning before killing Mr Gibbs because he found the switcher burying Dutan. He didn't want anyone to know but I found out," said Vivian as she turned to look at the forest, her eyes skimming the place before she looked at a certain direction, "He's buried somewhere there. That's where you will find Dutan."
"What about the switcher? Did you kill him?" Hueren didn't know what to ask and how to feel suddenly. He took the coat that he wore and asked her to wear it, "Going inside might not be feasible due to the stench of blood. Though I am not able to smell it the vampires and the other pureblooded vampires will be able to pick up the scent. Please go to the carriage. I will go get some clothes for you," he instructed her, "Please," he whispered hoping she would listen to him and not go to the court council.
"Okay," she answered and he quickly ran back inside the council building to fetch clothes of Leonard.
Vivian walked around the building to find the carriages that had been lined under the shed. Going to their carriage she saw the coachman to be missing like the rest of them. Opening the door, she stepped inside.
Her mind was still in a daze at the thought of what happened in a few hours of time. The discomfort in her chest started again and this time it felt as if someone had put their hand in there to squeeze it as she felt the suffocation starting to build. The more seconds passed the more difficult it turned out to be until the door of the carriage was knocked on.
"Lady Vivian? I brought you the clothes," informed Hueren on the other side of the door. She opened the door for him to hand over Leo's clothes, "I will stand here until you are done changing," and he closed the door of the carriage.
With the door closed and the little curtains pulled over the windows, Vivian changed her clothes inside the carriage and when was done changing, she stepped out of the carriage wearing the pant and shirt of Leo's. Women never wore what men wore and this was something very bizarre for Hueren who looked slightly taken aback by her different appearance where she wasn't wearing her usual dress. The clothes were loose but she had somehow managed to tighten the pant while tucking in the shirt so that it wouldn't look shabby.
After she had washed her hands clean, "I want to go to the court proceeding," she declared and before he could protest she had already started to walk towards the building. Heuren ran to her and followed to walk next to her.
When they entered the building, the councilwoman received everyone's looks and attention. They weren't shocked but rather gobsmacked. If it were a different time, Vivian would have been bothered with the looks they gave her. Some that mocked, some that were of disappointment and shame but she could care less as to what people thought of her appearance right now.
Reaching the council court where the doors were already open wide. The court was in procession where Lionel sat at the high seat as usual and a councilman who accompanied him to write down the notes next to him.
"...under the edict of four hundred twenty-four, it is clear that this man or the creature we have here-" Hueren was about to stop her but Vivian had voiced out her words,
"Stop!" her voice loud enough to stop Lionel from speaking. Her senior councilman didn't look pleased with the way she had interrupted. The look he gave her was worse than the time when he had only narrowed his eyes as Leo had stopped one of the proceedings.
Vivian's eyes moved to see the switcher whom she had spoken about Sister Isabelle, the man who had entered the council to help and not to wreck it. He was tied with chains and shackles. His mouth taped around so that he wouldn't be able to speak.
"Councilwoman Vivian," Lionel's voice was sharp as he spoke to her that would have made her flinch but she stood her ground strong, "Don't you know there is an important court proceeding going on in here? If you have your opinion, you can take a seat and wait for your turn."
She wanted to say more but the number of eyes that had multiplied for not only for her clothes that she wore but also to stop a higher councilman during the court, she received a lot more attention than she wished.
"I am not done yet," added Lionel seeing the resistance that she showed. As Vivian's eyes were black from the beginning, a lot of them didn't notice the change in her eyes or the fangs that had gone to retrace back into her jaws, "Would you want special invitation?" the question was directed to Hueren now as Vivian had walked inside to go to stand next to Leonard.
Worry came to etch in his mind by seeing her like this. Not that he minded but he knew something had happened. When she came to stand next to him, joining him in the session that was going on, he held her hand, squeezing it as they stood.
She then lifted her head to look at Lionel who continued with what he was saying before she had interrupted him...