Chapter 22: Shadows

A/N:  Ok, so I want to give a huge shoutout to Trip for all her help.  There are a few images that I’ve manipulated.  It is due to her help and a tutorial using GIMP that I was able to it.  So, Trip, thank you so very much!  You are awesome!

Ok, as I’m sure you guys have noticed, I tend to use screenshots that I’ve gotten from the game itself mainly because I find the Sims interesting enough on their own.  However, I have found the joy of Pose Player and so this chapter and later ones have utilized it quite a bit.  Now, I am an amateur at it, so please bear with me.  If you guys have any comments or tips, please feel free to give them to me.  I love to learn and any tricks or tips are greatly appreciated.  Also, RaiaDraconis was super helpful in helping me find a good majority of the poses I’ve used so far, so there’s another big shout out!

Anyway, here we go!  Enjoy this chapter guys!

I don’t even know where to begin!  I’m feeling so overwhelmed right now, I can barely focus.  Maybe writing it out will help settle me down.  First off, it’s been three days since Dad left.  He didn’t- couldn’t- tell us much, other than he hoped that things would finally be done.  None of us were happy about it, not at all.  But Mom, the unhappiest of us all, said that it was something he had to do.  She was the one who had given us the news; Dad had already left right from the station, apparently.  She had told us of the phone call that had pulled him out of the house and then the subsequent phone call she’d gotten from him a few hours later.

I haven’t been able to shake this horrible feeling that won’t leave me.  I do my best.  Poor Luna can’t figure out where her grandfather has gone.  She’ll sit on the floor and just look around, as if she were waiting for him.

Every time I go to get her from the crib, she looks at me and asks hopefully, “/Pop-pop?/”

It breaks my heart when I have to tell her that, no, he wasn’t home yet.  Though he’s been gone this long before, the fact that we haven’t heard anything yet is very upsetting and it makes this terrible foreboding I have even worse.  Mom won’t admit it, but she has a similar feeling.  She’s been trying to clear her mind using meditation, but I don’t think that’s helping her much.

If that wasn’t bad enough in and of itself, earlier today was just a nightmare.  After Jeff and I got married, Mom and Dad insisted I get my furniture out of storage, start making my mark on the house.  I finally did and with it, we had a fireplace installed in the living room, something I’d always wanted.  Boy am I regretting that now.

Jeff had just lit a fire in it.

I was in the nursery with Luna, trying to get her settled down for her afternoon nap.  Without her grandfather, it was harder to get her to go to sleep.  Jeff had gone back to our room to get dressed.  Suddenly, I heard my mother yelling.  I came running out of the nursery to see what the matter was and this was what I saw:

Jeff and I both ran out to do what we could to help Mom battle the blaze at first.

We had mostly gotten it all out when this happened…

Luckily, he made it into the shower.  He only got a little singed, though his pants were a dead-loss and his nice jacket was damaged.  But that was a small price to pay.  After I and my mother looked him over and made sure he was ok, he went immediately into Luna’s nursery and held her close.

She must have heard the yelling because it had taken quite a while for him to get her settled down again.  As he turned away from her crib, I had come in and I wrapped my arms around him, burying my head against him.

I had been so frightened.  I couldn’t stop the tears that slowly slid down my cheeks.  He held me for a long moment, then put me at arms’ length.

“We’re ok, love.  I’m fine.  A little singed, but I’m ok.”

“I-I know.  Just scared me.”

He pulled me close again.  “It’ll be ok.  C’mon, let’s try and go get some sleep, alright?”  I nodded.  I was exhausted; between the worry about Dad, the terrible feeling of impending doom that wouldn’t leave, and now the fire, I was a wreck.  “Yeah, a nap would be great right about now.”

So Jeff and I headed to our room and slid into bed.  I curled up next to my husband and closed my eyes.  But as I slid into sleep, my dreams were not easy.

Draco waited in the elevator, nonchalantly leaning against the  wall as the too-cheerful music played.  Why did elevator music sound like that?  Whose bright idea was that anyway?  Chuckling to himself, he crossed his legs, watching the floor indicator.  If everything had gone to plan, he’d get into the office, find what they needed, then get out.  And since he hadn’t gotten the abort signal, everything should have gone to plan.

As the little bell dinged to indicate they had made it to the top floor, Draco nodded.  He looked sharp in his tuxedo.  It paid to appear as someone important when needing to get into a building such as this.  He’d been able to steamroll across the receptionist that had tried to stop him on the way up.  As the doors slid open, he stepped out into an elegantly furnished office that spanned the entire half of this floor of the building.  Being the boss must have paid quite well.  He walked in and then stopped abruptly when he saw someone sitting behind the giant mahogany desk.

The images of the dream were distorted, hazy, not very clear.  But even in sleep, Aurora knew them to be real.  She whimpered, wanting to scream for her father to get out of there, to run away.  She could only watch it unfold, however, as if she were the only witness to what would come.

The figure behind the desk smiled at him, showing pointed canine fangs.  “Welcome, Mr. Wyvern.  Do you mind if I call you, Draco?”  The smile fell away in a split second.  “You’ve become a very big problem in the last few years, you know.”

His expression had gone utterly blank, but now he grinned, making it as insolent as he could while his mind raced.  “I’ll take that as a compliment, Slayer.  Or should I call you Elvira?  Since you want to get cozy.”  His voice was calm, almost as insolent as his smile.  His blood was ice and his head was cool as he considered his options.  He knew Elvira to be fairly old by vampire standards and knew she was dangerous.  But he hadn’t gotten to where he was by being stupid, either and he knew what he was doing.

Elvira Slayer continued to glare at him for a long moment, but again, that same vicious smile curled the corners of her mouth upward.  “I applaud your courage, I truly do.  But since I’ve received enough information on you to know that you are far too honorable to work for me, I’m afraid that leaves me with only one option.”  She stood up and looked to her left, to a small alcove that hid something… or someone.  “My dear, if you would come and dispose of our guest, please?”

Draco braced as a figure stepped out into view.  Anger suddenly boiled up within him.  “You!” he snarled, stepping forward.  “Traitor!”

Elvira laughed and William just grinned.  “Oh, poor boy.  William has been mine from the beginning.  It’s very useful to have someone who knows and understands the inner workings of the police force, wouldn’t you say?”

”I won’t let you get away with this!” Draco snarled, that anger sizzling through his blood.  He braced himself for a fight.

Elvira rolled her eyes.  “William?  If you would dear?”  Draco was strong, and smart, and he’d trained for a long time.  But he still hadn’t quite recovered from his last assignment and he was getting older.  Despite his powers, he hadn’t seen this betrayal, probably due to a vampire’s superior mental shields.  He just wasn’t prepared as William seemed to come flying at him, his knee connecting with Draco’s solar plexus.

As if played out, Aurora tossed and turned, tears beginning to slowly slide down her cheeks.
Draco’s breath exploded out even as he was tossed against the reinforced glass of the windows behind him.  When he hit, he just slid down onto the floor, stunned.  It was long enough for William to bring up the gun he held in his hand.  Elvira threw back her head, laughing.  “Kill him, William.”

”S-sophia,” Draco whispered, fighting to get his breath back.  But staring down the barrel of the gun, he knew his luck had run out.

As the sound of a gunshot exploded and then echoed through her brain, Aurora awoke, screaming.  “D-daddy,” she whispered, a burning sensation spreading out from her chest.

Her eyes rolled into her head even as Jeff jerked awake.  As Aurora slid into darkness, she heard her daughter’s piercing cry of anguish.



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