Hello everyone and thanks for dropping by to have a look at this story. As I am looking for feed back on this there is one thing that needs to be noted. There are some places in the story that i could of had the main character talking but due to forum rules i was unable to have her use actual dialog so it does end up being a bit wordy. I would also like to add a special thanks to @Hooligan for taking the time to help me get this forum ready for you all to enjoy. ================================================================================ Kyda Turner was born in a small suburban house in London 1814, to a blacksmith and a dress maker. The family wasn't rich by any means but it wasn't poor either. It was a simple, happy existents that was maintained with great difficulty. You see the Turner family wasn't what one would call normal, they had a secret. They, were vampires. Yet even in the vampire community they were considered a little strange, all because they chose to co-exist with the humans and not see them as merely a source of food. James Turner owned his own blacksmith's workshop that formed the bottom of their small townhouse a forge sticking out its side. He was known around the area as being the best in his trade thanks in part to a small power he kept hidden from everyone but his family. James was gifted with the power of fire, meaning he could get his forge hotter then any other and could work metal outside of the burning coals using only his hands. Sarabi Turner had no special abilities of her own but she was a talented dressmaker and a kind soul. Both where delighted the day their little daughter was born, creamy white skin, a crown of bright red hair and the most startling violet eyes they had ever seen. She was their little gem the only thing that mattered to them in the whole world. Kyda was five years old when she first discovered she own ability. She was playing in her father's forge watching him repair the Grayson's butcher knives when James dropped one of the blades, it clamoured to the ground startling the little girl, then Kyda picked it up. The red hot iron didn't even leave a mark on her tiny hands as she picked up the blade and handed it back to her father. James looked at his daughter in amazement as he took the blade from her, giving her hands a quick once over. "Sweetie how long have you been able to do that?" He asked kneeling down to his little girls level. Kyda shrugged not sure what to say, she didn't know that it wasn't normal to be able to pick up burning hot iron. She told her father she didn't know but that the fire also turned dark when she touched it, happily pointing to a bunch of candles sitting on the bench she told her father to watch. Kyda walked over to the candles and touched the flames, instantly they turned black and the candles melted to the floor. James gaped not sure what to make of what he had seen. Never had he ever witnessed someone actually use Black Fire and to have his daughter be gifted with it, what was he to do. The little vampire looked at her father feeling very proud of herself, sighing loudly James flashed her a toothy grin and patted her head. Closing the workshop early James sat down with his daughter and went through what she was able to do and how much control she had over it. And so began the first of many lessons for the little vampire. It was tough but Kyda's parents taught her many things that helped her to adapt to the human world they lived in. Rule one - If she needed to go out during the day she was to cover up completely and carry her umbrella to protect her from the sun. No matter what! Rule two - When smiling don't show your teeth. Rule three - Never use your powers where another can see. Rule four - That even though they must sometimes end a life to live it was never to be a light decision to make, one was to think of the consequences of ending that life. Who would it effect? Would anyone notice? And above all, were they in anyway associated with a Hunter? Hunters were the only predators the vampires had to fear. They were humans who were trained from a young age to hunt and kill vampires and those who associated with them. A Hunter would not care if the family lived in peace with the humans around them, he or she would still be obligated to slay them. Keeping those lessons in mind the Turner family lived in peace with the humans around them for 7 years. It was a blissful time for Kyda to grow up, where a man’s word was his binding contract and honour and dignity came above all else. That was until the mass murder at the Periwinkle household not two streets from the Turners. It had been a Vampire well known to the family, Mr Yulof Kringston. It was well rumoured in the community that he was having some problems with his health, and his job was suffering for it so he was turning to less the reputable means to cope with it all. He was one of the few vampires that lived as the Turners did, next to humans in their world and not completely in the night, So it was a shock to all those that knew him that had tried to overdose on a drug called moon dust. Moon Dust was called that due to the white and silver colour of the powder, it was said to make your vision black with only one beam of light shining through. A very dangerous and addictive substance it was illegal in every known country and impossibly hard to find the people who did have it. A human overdose of the drug would cause spasms and the brain slowly bleeding out making the victim cry tears of blood. But as a vampire is stronger than a human and their healing abilities working faster the drug had a very different effect on Mr Kringston. Yulof Kringston had been driven mad by the drug, and in the haze had broken into the Periwinkle house and slaughtered the family in their sleep. Draining every last drop of blood from the bodies as he went. James found Yulof laying next to the bodies of Mr and Mrs Periwinkle, having come to see what had caused such a strong smell of blood and death. He helped the mad drugged vampire to the outskirts of town, leaving him at a small tavern whose owners were a friend to the vampires. They would see that he made it to the elders for punishment. When the bodies were discovered it became the most talked about thing in town, a family being murdered and drained of their blood was not something that happened everyday, then the rumours came. It started off innocently enough, it had been the work of a deranged man. It was the old ghost that roamed that part of town. Then Vampire was whispered and it took hold, it fit perfectly, the violence of it and the missing blood as well as there being no sign of the killer. People needed someone to blame for the tragedy that had befallen them and now they had it. Anyone deemed suspicious was dragged to a bare courtyard in front of the Periwinkle house, so the accused knew why they were there, why this madness was happening, and then they were left to burn in the morning sun. Any who survived were quickly taken away never to be seen or heard from again, No one was willing to speak up about it, lest they become the next one in the courtyard. Then the town did manage to find one true vampire. A little girl abandoned by her sire, or handed over no one would say, she didn't look more than ten years old yet even that didn't stop the people from the horror they wanted. The mob bound her hands to a metal stake they had driven into the ground beating her till she could fight them no longer. As the sun rose over the roof tops you could hear the little girls screams echo through the streets as her blood boiled burning her from the inside out, her skin bubbling off her body, hair turning to flames till the screaming stopped and her bones blacked to ash. The Turners had tried to continue living their lives as normal but after hearing of all this James decided it was time for the family to leave and start anew, it was too dangerous to stay. All he could think about was how it could have easily been his little Kyda burning out there or his wife, it was enough to make him sick. He had a friend in France, near a town called Tonnerre, that had agreed to help them, so that was where they went. ========== It didn't take long for the family to settle in Tonnerre. Sarabi found work right away as a seamstress at the local dress shop and James took up work at a local smith's owned by his friend. The days came and went Kyda growing and learning all that she could, the nightmare back in London long forgotten. She became friends with a little boy, Peter Craven, that lived on the farm just down the road from her house. The two were inseparable, they spent their days playing in the dense forest that surrounded the town, exploring the creeks and small caves they found. Her parents warned her not to get too attached to Peter, as humans were different from them, and they didn't take kindly to vampires, they reminded her of the incident in London and asked that she take caution if she continued to be friends with him. Kyda took their words to heart and it went well for a time, then one day close to two years after they had settled, a strange man came to stay at Peter's farm. He never showed his face during the day only ever going to do business at night so no one was ever sure what he looked like. Peter had even told Kyda that all the man wore where cloths of black with a cloak and hood to match. It struck them both as a little odd, but neither was brave enough to say a word about it to anyone. It was a few days later that James heard the news. A hunter was in town. Three vampires had already been killed and many more marked by the new comer. This worried James he had a good idea as to who it was but he could not interrupt the family's daily activities as it might draw attention to them, he was sure the hunter knew of them already. Even fleeing was dangerous at that point as the hunter could easily follow them then come back to finish his job. So life went on till the night of the last summer full moon. It was to mark the second year they had been in France and Kyda's 9th human birthday. Kyda had been out playing with Peter in the forest when suddenly Peter decided he wanted to show her his tree house, the one in the old apple tree near his house. He tried to drag her out into the open fields, a short cut but Kyda had taken her cardigan off while they were in the caves and didn't want to go. She resisted as best she could but the lower part of her arm came in contact with the sun's rays as Peter tried to force her with him, causing her to scream out in pain as the summer sun hit her skin and the blood started to boil. Peter dropped her arm instantly a look of horror in his eyes. The stranger had been talking to him and even people here had heard of the vampire killings in London. Everyone thought they knew the signs, Peter knew the signs, knew what she was. Turning she fled back to her home and locked herself inside her hand still stinging from the exposure, the skin turning a dark tan. She waited for her father and mother to come back, waited to tell them that they needed to run. It was well past sundown, James and Sarabi should have been home long ago but there was no sign of them anywhere. Kyda was beginning to panic she wasn't sure what she could do, what she should do, then the kitchen door was suddenly broken in, standing in the doorway was James covered in blood a look of panic in his eyes. Without looking around he grabbed their emergency bags from the floorboards under the kitchen and rushed Kyda out the door and into the night. James used his superior speed to run them far from the town and into the hills ignoring all the questions tumbling out of his daughter's mouth. Where was mother? What had happened? Why were they running? James didn't have time for any of it, all he wanted, needed to do was get his little girl as far away from that town as possible. It was near dawn when Mr Turner finally stopped running and found a small cave for them to make camp in. There he explained. Sarabi had run into the Hunter at the market place and unknowingly lead him back to her shop where he waited for her. As she was walking home the Hunter struck, but Sarabi did not go down easily wounding the Hunter badly before he had drove a wooden stake through her heart. The Hunter had then come after James but he was too weak to win that fight. James had ribbed his throat out and drained him of blood before the hunter knew what hit him. It hit the little Vampire hard to hear her mother was no more, it was just something her young mind couldn't quite comprehend. Kyda and her father spent the next year drifting from town to town never settling in one place for more than a few months. James stopped feeding and slowly began to look and feel weaker and weaker until one day, a summer's full moon above them he gave up all together. Kyda begged and pleaded with him to not do what he planned but nothing would sway him. He had thought that as long as he had Kyda and she was safe he could go on living, oh how wrong he had been. Sarabi was all he had lived for and he could not stand to be without her, not anymore. Kyda was his child but Sarabi had been his soul. So Kyda watched tears streaming down her face, as her father walked into the morning sun, his blood beginning to boil and the skin starting to peal off his figure. No word was uttered from him, no screaming, no crying, just quiet acceptance. He wasn't able to live without his beloved wife and so he didn't. Waiting until night fall had been hard for the little vampire, the tears wouldn't stop flowing and she had given up trying to stop them. As the moon rose she made her way out of the cave and over to the scorched mark ground where her father had stood not a few hours before. Kneeling down she touched the dirt softly the tears finally stopping. Looking around her Kyda realised she had no idea where she was or what she was going to do. She stumbled through the forest blindly coming to the main road as the moon reached its peak. In the distance she could see a dim glow walking towards it she couldn't help the gasp that escaped her when she eyes fell on the picture painted before her. Paris. ========== Kyda wandered the streets of Paris for days not sure what she was meant to be doing. Hungry and cold she started to try and stalk humans for a proper feed but she was still to small and untrained to catch anyone. It was during one of her stalking trips that she ran into Ivan, a vampire who ran a small gang of pickpockets and thieves. Kyda had been following a school boy on his way home from a friends house when she ducked into an alleyway to head the boy off. About half way down she stopped the glint of a small coin catching her eye. Leaning down to pick it up she was suddenly tackled to the ground and pinned by the bigger boy his fangs flashing in the street lights, just a quick Kyda bared her own fangs letting out a small hiss telling the boy she was one of his own kind. He kept her there, pinned to the cobblestones for a second, just appraising her then standing up he pulled her with him. "Where is your coven?" He asked simply expecting her to just be some lost child, that was until she broke down into tears. He spent the rest of the night listening to her story giving her the comfort she needed and at the end offered her a place in his coven, having nowhere else to go Kyda agreed and she started the road to a very different kind of education. Those years in Paris where some of the best she could remember from that time, She learnt how to pick pockets and steal without ever being noticed. Ivan showed her the best way to stalk prey so that even the most suspicious person wouldn't notice them and then the biggest lesson of all. How to catch the prey. It was quick and surprisingly clean the first time Ivan let her kill for herself. A hand over the mouth a dagger to the throat and that was it. The businessman was dead and drained within minutes, it disturbed her a little how easy it came to her, taking a life, but she shrugged it off as nothing, just a lingering memory from her parents. Those thoughts would only get her killed now. As her skills in street life grew so did her power with Black Fire. Practicing every chance she got her powers grew in leaps and bounds. She had the occasional accident, burning down a bronze statue in the park and setting fire to a traveling magicians set when she found he was stealing children, and many more. But her biggest accident of all was on the night of her 15th birthday. She had had a couple of wines with the boys when Ivan asked her up to his room so he could give her, her birthday present. Thinking nothing of it she had followed him up the stairs and into his room taking a seat on his bed. Ivan sat next to her and whispered sweet words into her ear his hands starting to draw lazy circles over her back . Kyda blushed not use to receiving that kind of attention from anyone. Finally she asked why they where there, couldn't he have given her, her present down stairs? Shaking his head Ivan told her that this was for her alone. "We wouldn't want the others taking it on you." He said getting up to grab a small basket from beside the bed. Kyda's eyes widened as she saw what lay inside. A baby, couldn't have been more then a week old, lay inside fast asleep. She looked at Ivan confused and asked why he had given her a baby? "Its not to raise my little kitten, a newborns blood is the sweetest thing you will ever be able to have." Ivan said happily a dark glint coming to his eyes. Kyda couldn't believe it, she just couldn't. Everything in her screamed that this was wrong, hunting down an adult, someone who had already lived the best days of theirs lives was one thing, but to kill a child, a baby, that she couldn't do. Stepping back she let out a series of no's demanding the baby be taken back to its mother. The little vampire declared she wouldn't do it moving to walk out of the room. Ivan grabbed her and held her in place demanding that she kill the child, that she was old enough to not be so silly about such things now. Placing her hands on his chest Kyda begged him to stop, to let her go and to let the child live but he would have none of it. Feeling her power building up inside her she warned him yet again to let go, then as Ivan pulled her to him hard she let the power go straight into Ivan's heart. It wasn't quick and it certainly wasn't painless as the Black Fire consumed his heart and continued through his body like a river of molten lava. Kyda watched as he screamed and burned there on the bed, she heard the other vampires trying to get into the room and knew she had to get out of there and get out now. Grabbing the child and climbing out the window she ran, getting up to her top speed she made it as far away as she could, leaving the screams of agony behind her. Finding a church on the far side of town hadn't been hard. She left the child with the nuns hoping that maybe they would be able to find the family if anything. ========== Kyda wandered the roads after that, only feeding on animals when the need became too much to ignore, animal blood just didn't have the same punch as human blood and she put it off for as long as possible. She met many interesting people on her travels, a tinker that blended with the shadows better than any assassin, a farmer who sold moon dust powder and a highwaymen who wasn't as fast as he thought he was. She wandered the roads and towns of France for near on a year when she came to Nice, a bustling, vibrant city on the far coast. It was here that she came across a circus being held in an abandoned run down church. Cirque De La Nuit, it was called, the flyer advertised it as a fantastic horror filled show for only the strong stomached. It intrigued Kyda, she had heard of theses kinds of shows when she was in Paris but she had never had the opportunity to go to one. So that night as the show was about to start, she snuck into the church, but before she could find a seat a small creature dressed in robes his face covered by a hood, found her and dragged her off out of the church and to the ringmaster's tent. Kyda tried to escape a couple of times but the little man was impossibly strong and quick, his grip she was sure would break her wrist and the growl that came from him every time she pulled away was feral at best. The little man pushed her onto a tall stool that was in the tent then stood next to her as a guard. It was an hour later that the ring master finally showed up, he was a tall man standing over eight feet tall and the build of a skeleton. Opening the tent flap he looked at Kyda in surprise and gave the little person a look of displeasure the two stared at each other for what seemed like an age before the Ring master looked at her again. "Hello miss, may I ask why a vampire is trying to sneak into my show?" The ring master asked his voice low and gravelly. Kyda shrugged and mutter something about just being curious looking at the ground briefly then going rigid at his words. She asked how he could have known she was a vampire only receiving a low chuckle came from the man in front of her, it wasn't unpleasant but it was unsettling. "My dear child I have come to be friends with many of your kind. So what is your coven name, I will see that you get back to them." The ring master said pouring them both a drink, not bothering to ask if she really wanted one. Kyda whispered that she didn't have her own coven anymore hugging herself not noticing the reaction of the ring master. "My name is Mr Jenkins and if you like, we shall be your coven." Mr Jenkins offered holding out the glass of water to her. Kyda offered her own name and a thousand thank you's, after the horrible end at Paris she jumped at the chance to have something, anything to do with her life. After wandering for so long she could use all the family she could find. The circus itself was not like any she had even seen in her life. It was not filled with normal acts or people, but with strange humans and creatures like herself. There she learnt how to throw knives and wield daggers with a Japanese Lizard man. Breath fire and even control techniques for fire handling that worked wonders on her power over Black Fire, from a man claiming his ancestors were descendants from dragons. She travelled with him to China one year to visit his clan and learn what she could from his people and to forget her past in France, what was meant to be a short visit turned into ten years. In that time she came to be quite good at the dragon clan's techniques and when it was deemed she could learn no more from them she returned to the circus ready for her next adventure. They were set up in in a small town in Finland when a new act joined the show. It was a family of vampires you specialized in ice magic, they were welcomed with open arms and for the first time in twenty six years she was amongst others like her. Doing the calculation in her head she was surprised how long it had been since she had last spoken with a vampire and she was excited about getting to know some of her own kind. The family stayed with the circus as it travelled through Finland and up into Sweden and Norway, showing Kyda different things about vampire life that she had not used in years or had never seen before. Her speed increased as well as her strength, agility and all her other senses. They departed from the circus as it crossed the border into Denmark, offering Kyda a place in their coven if she ever needed it. The next stop of the journey was a town called Odense, it was a busy coastal town in Denmark and Kyda was desperate to get out of the shows boundaries and explore. She was granted permission but she was to take an escort with her, she didn't like the idea of having someone follow her into town, so as any rebellious teenager would she snuck out just before the show ended that night. Kyda was amazed at the city's nightlife, there were cafes and restaurants opened everywhere and street performers could be seen at many of the towns fountains. It was amazing. It was while she was watching one of the street performers that she noticed something. A strange feeling of being watched was creeping up on her back. Thinking it was someone from the circus Kyda payed it no mind and continued enjoying herself. As she walked back to the show Kyda learnt the most valuable lesson of her life. Always trust your instincts. He came out of nowhere jumping from a rooftop and landing a few feet in front of her blades ready. "What is a filthy little blood sucker like you doing in MY town." He said taking a step towards her, Kyda stepped back for every step he took scared. "I don't know what your talking about." She said hopping he would think he made a mistake and leave her alone. "Don't play dumb with me little girl. Now stop running and fight." The man lunged his blade swinging down, Kyda dodged and rolled away getting to her feet drawing her own blades. The man lunged again his sword meeting her daggers. Kyda pushed the sword away and jabbed at the man’s side catching him slightly as he danced away from her a feral grin coming over his face. The dance continued on for a few more minutes Kyda managed to draw some more blood but so had the Hunter. They danced, spun, lunged and dodged until Kyda made a fatal mistake she backed herself up against a wall, the Hunter brought his sword up to her throat and leaned in close. "Burn blood sucker." He whispered before being flung away to the other side of the street. Kyda sunk to the ground relief making it hard to stand there by her side was a small group of the little people. They held short swords in their tiny hands forming a semicircle around her. "What is this? What are these things?" The Hunter yelled angered by the interruption, the little people moved forward but the Hunter would have none of it. He swung his sword and engaged one of them but the others were not very sporting and attacked while he was distracted. The Hunter took a few hits before he retreated back to the roof tops screaming that he would find her and finish her one day. The little people escorted Kyda back to the circus where she was promptly scolded for being so stupid, reckless and putting not only herself but the rest of the circus in danger. It left Kyda with little choice, she needed to leave the circus for a little while and now was a good time. She need to find herself or at the very least get rid of some of the rebelliousness. ========== Her time away from the circus was a great time for Kyda. It was 1867 and her first stop was Russia where she met a City Masters daughter saving her from a kidnapping and earning herself a place in the city's coven when ever she needed it. Moving on she met an Hermit Elder vampire living in the backwoods of Ukraine and spent a few months learning some of the most interesting vampiric history she had ever come across. In 1876 she found herself back in France, just passing through but it turned into an event. She ran into the old coven that had taken her in after the tragedy of her parents, they were less than friendly. Which was to be expected after she had burned their leader alive. It was a quick fight ending with Kyda fleeing the city for the second time in her life. After that she swore never to go back, at least not alone. So she made her way down to Italy where she met a girl with the most amazing healing abilities. Sierra Fa-Torren was the most beautiful girl Kyda had ever met. Golden hair and blue eyes brighter than a clear summers sky. The two became best friends almost instantly and ended up practically sisters as the years went on even though the beautiful girl was most definitely human. Then in the summer of 1885 Cirque De La Nuit came to town and Kyda decided to leave the peaceful life she had built with Sierra and returned to the circus life. If only for a short time. Sierra didn't begrudge her friend for leaving, Only making her promise to come visit if she was ever in Italy again. ========== In 1900 Kyda decided it was time to broaden her horizons, she had travelled all of Europe and wanted to explore somewhere new and so she bought a ticket for a luxury cruise to South America. It was mid summer when she landed in Peru, disembarking in the city of Lima, the sun was bright and the weather hot as she stepped off of the ship and onto the docks. She received many strange looks from the locals as she was dressed in long sleeves and carried and umbrella to shelter her from the sun, her bright red hair a beckon even in the shade, but she payed them no mind. Checking into a hotel Kyda spent her time lounging in her room, once night fell she was free to explore the city to her heart’s desire. Kyda was astonished that as night fell the weather did not change, the heat stayed and the sky remained clear. Stopping at a small cafe for a drink Kyda drunk up the atmosphere around her glad she had made the journey. Everything was so festive and the people where happy. It was there at the cafe that she met one of the most interesting men she would ever come across. Dr Emit Briston was an anthropologist and historian in Peru to research the ancient Inca civilization. He was a short man with a big build, hair going grey and the bushiest salt and pepper beard she had ever seen. She was sitting at the bar when he came and took the seat next to hers striking up a conversation wanting to know all the news from Europe they chatted and laughed then after a few margarita's the Dr invited Kyda to join him and his team in his exploration of the Inca ruins after she expressed her interest in his work. It was an eye opening experience, she learnt to speak fluent Spanish and Dutch as well as multiple tribal tongues, met countless lost tribes and learnt countless ways to hunt, track and fish. Her exploring days came to an end in 1910 on an expedition to the city of Liripampa to the north of the Inca empire. The group where crossing an old rope bridge when the ropes snapped leaving Kyda separated from the group on the wrong side of the ravine, two of the other explorers falling to their deaths in the rapids below. "Don't worry about me, I know the coordinates ill find another way across and catch up with you." She yelled to Dr Briston waving them on. "Alright but don't take any unnecessary risks." The Dr instructed pulling the rest of the group together and head off into the jungle. Kyda wondered for three days along the edge of the ravine looking for anyway to cross, but she found none. She started to think the only way she was going to get across was by climbing down the walls and then back up. Yes she had the strength to do that but she wasn't convinced that she wouldn't fall and suffer the same fate as the others had. Setting up camp that night Kyda pondered over what to do eventually falling asleep with the crackle of the fire and the sounds of the jungle as her lullaby. The sound of a twig snapping had Kyda awake, daggers in hand and on her feet in seconds, her eyes landed on the shadow of what looked to be a man with the head of a pig. "Who are you? what do you want?" Kyda questioned using the tongue of the last tribe they had visited assuming it may be close enough to this things to get her safe passage. The man raised his hands in surrender and stepped closer to the fire. Now in the light Kyda could see that the creature was definitely human with a medicine man’s mask on. Lifting his hands slowly the man pulled the mask off revealing his face. Kyda wasn't one to believe in love at first site, after living for 96 years and only have affections for a handful of people she was sceptical but that all changed when she saw his face. Dark skin like milk chocolate, black hair and matching eyes chiselled chin and body he stood just on six feet tall. Kyda lowered her daggers unconsciously and just stared at the man. "My name is Marko, I am sorry I did not mean to frighten you." The medicine man said giving Kyda a charming smile. "I saw your fire and just came to investigate. Are you alone?" Kyda looked around her and shrugged biting her lower lip. "Kind of. I got separated from my group. I'm looking for a way across the ravine." She explained. Offering for the man to spend the night by the fire he in return offered to show her the way across as he was going there anyway. Morning dawned and the two new friends broke camp and headed further down the river. It was midday when they came to the tatty rope bridge connecting the two sides on the ravine. Kyda was hesitant by Marko encouraged her gently to walk across both having a laugh when they reached the other side safely. "So where are you headed from here?" Marko asked as they ate their midday meal. "I’m heading up to Liripampa." Kyda replied taking a bite of the fruit Marko had picked. She wasn't sure what it was but it was sweet and very delicious. "I can take you there. My village is just past Liripampa's limits." Marko offered, Kyda agreed happy to spend every minute with him. By the next night they found Dr Briston's camp, he welcomed both of them with warm hugs, thanking Marko again and again for getting her to him. Marko took his leave the next morning promising to visit later and maybe even take the group to see his village. The whole expedition lasted six months only ending due to the Dr's failing health. Marko visited regularly showing the group around and helping them translate the old texts they found, growing closer and closer to Kyda. They kissed for the first time while down at a small stream collecting water for that night's dinner. Kyda had slipped and would have fallen in if Marko had not caught her by the wrist and pulled her to him. Without warning his lips had been on hers moulding themselves together slowly, sweetly. And so it progressed and when it came time to leave Kyda just couldn't bring herself to. Saying goodbye to the Dr she was welcomed to the village and life felt perfect. She kept her vampire half hidden well but it was all in vain. She had gone out hunting one night, catching a small squirrel to feed from, Marko had followed her hoping for romantic meeting in the jungle. He had been shocked to find his love draining the life from the tiny creature but he did not run, it confused Kyda to no end why he hadn't run right then at the sight. "You are who you are. You have not harmed my people in all the time you have stayed with us so I see no reason to leave you." Marko had explained. It was true if she did need human blood she caught the person knocked them out and only took a little the wounds looking like a small cut. For the first time the words 'I love you' where whispered as they made their way back to the village Kyda thinking she was the luckiest vampire in the world. Her one hundredth birthday came and went without her even noticing with no way of knowing the month or day it wasn't surprising. Then one day a group of explorers came across the village. These were not men like Dr Briston who was there for only knowledge, no these men where treasure hunters coming for any wealth they could find at the old Inca sites. Kyda could sense they were trouble, and how right she was. ========== The men had been there for close on three full moons when things started to go missing from the village temple, Kyda confronted the men but it amounted to nothing more then one of them taking a less the innocent interest in her. He followed her everywhere and so openly that the villagers started to comment on it. To get away from it all Kyda went on a hunt, hoping the time away would calm her anger at the men and help her come up with a plan to get rid of them. Kyda was on her way back to the village when the smell of smoke caught her attention. It wasn't the normal cooking smell or wood smell, it smelt darker some how. Picking up the pace Kyda ran back to the village finding it in flames. The villagers were trying to put it out while defending themselves from the men that had started it. Kyda watched shocked as the treasure hunters cut down the villages one by one. The healer was cut down a stab wound through the gut ending her life, the little boy she was teaching to read kicked down and shot in the head, the ground turned red with theirs and many others spilt blood. It wasn't until one of them turned on her that she snapped out of her shock and joined in the fray. She grabbed the man that had attacked her by the throat and ripped it out in one smooth motion before turning to the next one. Once it was over every villager was dead or wounded badly enough that death was a mercy. Only two of the treasure hunters were left standing and that was only because they had Marko, a knife to his throat. Kyda stood her ground glaring at the murderers. "Let him go." She demanded her voice dripping with hate and desperation to save at least the man she loved. "I don't think so." The man with the knife to Marko's throat said an evil smirk coming over his face, and then as fast you could blink he slit Marko's throat letting the boy drop to the ground blood spurting from the wound. Not caring for her own life Kyda ran to Marko's side and held him crying, begging for him to hold on, to not leave her alone but it was too late. The light in Marko's eyes faded quickly leaving nothing behind. The man that had killed her precious Marko leaned down and whispered to her. "We will come for you another time." Whether it was out of some twisted sort of mercy or torture the men left Kyda alive, crying her heart out in the bloody remains of the place she had called home. Kyda spent the next month in the village burying the dead and mourning her beloved Marko. She drained the blood of a few of the villagers getting her strength up then bottling another's for her journey ahead. She planned to hunt down the bastards that had done this and make them pay. She travelled all over South America following lead after lead, through the Andes and down into the Amazon jungles to the Guiana Highlands and before head up into Central America finally, seven years later, finding them in Mexico City. Kyda tracked them down to a small hospital in the inner city districts where both had been admitted for various injuries. Asking around she found that they had attacked a small coven of local vampires that also ran the biggest of the drug trades in the area. It was surprising that they had made it out alive, the coven was happy for Kyda to take their lives as long as the bastards ended up dead no one was going to argue over who did it. So sneaking into the hospital that night Kyda placed a small bit of Black Fire into each man's heart and watched as they burned from the inside out, taking pleasure in their screams of pain. The same they had dragged from the village all those years ago. ========== Having no where else to go Kyda decided to make her way up into America, she had heard about a place called Chicago and thought, why not. The road was easy to travel and most of the people she met were friendly enough. Traveling up through Texas took no time at all only about a week. There were signs that a great fight had been fought the closer and closer she got to the edge of Texas. Listening around she discovered that civil war had broken out only 67 years prior. Crossing the border between Texas and Oklahoma had been interesting. Kyda had been walking along minding her own business when out of no where a group of men on horses raced past her almost knocking her off her feet. They stopped a few yards down from her sizing her up. Kyda let out a growl showing her sharp teeth as a warning to keep going and not cause her any trouble, it didn't work. The group just laughed their leader coming forward. Leaning on his saddle horn her looked her up and down with an appreciative eye. "Well, well boys lookie 'ere, we got ourselves a vixen." The leader drawled his voice heavy with the Texan accent. "Keep on your business sir, I don't have any time for you." Kyda retorted her own voice sounding oddly posh with her slight British accent shining through. This made the leader laugh and shake his head. "Now, now missy we aint gonna do ya no harm. Where ya headed we could get ya there faster then you can think." The leader offered showing his own sharp teeth. Kyda thought it over for a second then sighed. She didn't really think it was a choice. "I'm on my way up to Chicago." She stated simply crossing her arms over her chest. "We can’t take ya that far but we can get ya up to St Louis if ya like, wouldn't take ya to long ta get to Chicago from there." Kyda made a show of thinking it over before accepting. The leader road up to her and grabbed her hand helping her up onto the horse. She was glad they weren't going to let her ride by herself, she had never really learned how to ride a horse and she honestly didn't want to. The journey up through Missouri was peaceful, she discovered that the coven where actually a group of outlaws, they spent most days robbing passing caravans she even watched them rob a train. It was all very amusing. They taught her how to use a gun and even how to ride a horse, though she was never any good at it. Kyda soon found herself liking the leader, Jack, more and more as the days rolled by, near the border of Missouri and Illinois she found herself sharing his bedroll more and more until they didn't bother even rolling one out for her. Reaching St Louis the group splurged and stayed in a small inn just on the outskirts of town. Jack took Kyda on one of the most romantic evenings of her life. It started with dinner then lead to a street band performance, he finished off the night by allowing Kyda to drag him everywhere she wanted to explore, it was the first time she truly smiled since the devastation back on Peru. The group spent a lazy few days in St Louis before funds started to run low and the outlaws needed to be back on the road. It was their last night together and the group where in the bar downstairs have a drink when a group of three Hunters found them. The fight was very much in the vampires favour, seven to three where good odds but the Hunters where skilled, they managed to cut down three of the outlaws before Jack got Kyda outside. "Run, if ya keep heading up the main road for a bit then duck out of site for a day or too ya can make it to Chicago no worries." He told her ending the statement with a sweet kiss. "No! I'm not leaving you to fight these people yourself." Kyda said stubbornly holding onto Jack's shirt. "Don't be daft, ill be fine lass, go and I will meet you again some day." With that Jack pushed her away and ducked back inside, Kyda went to take a step forward but a she did there was a bright flash and the loudest sound she had ever heard. The Hunters had tried to blow the inn apart, not wanting to be caught Kyda fled, running as Jack had told her, up the main road then ducking into a small forest. She laid low for a few days before taking the road again. She thought about going back to St Louis to look for Jack but knew that if he had survived he would be long gone by now. So setting her shoulders she continued on to Chicago. ========== Chicago was a big city by anyone's standards and Kyda quickly became lost in its vastness. She found herself sitting on the steps of the town's library as the moon rose for the night. She was beginning to fall asleep when a hand on her shoulder woke her. "Excuse me miss but you can’t sleep here." An elderly voice said kindly. Looking up Kyda came face to face with an old man wearing a smart brown suit, he reminded her so much of Dr Briston but with one difference, this man was bald. "Im sorry but I have nowhere else to go." Kyda said coming close to tears. The old man knelt down and patted her head as the tears started to come. She couldn't help it, even after all the years and heartache she still broke at the slightest kind word. "There now child, it’s not proper for a vampire to cry so." The old man said kindly. Kyda wiped away her tears and looked at the man confused. "How did you know?" She asked sniffling. The old man chuckled and pulled her to her feet. "I can smell our kind a mile away my child. Now if you have no where to go you are welcome in my home." He offered taking Kyda's arm and leading her down the street. "Thankyou sir, really thankyou." The old vampire was known as Mr Portter, he was a historian and linguist at the Chicago museum, at that time he was studying the old texts of Egypt and was delighted to have someone around to distract him from it all. Kyda wasn't sure how it came about exactly, she ended up becoming Mr Portter's permanent house guest and assistant at work. She learnt so many things in her time with him. How to read write and speak nearly every lost and ancient language there was known to the world, human or otherwise. She accompanied him on expeditions to nearly every corner of the world and watched as the world tried to tear itself apart with war after war. She spent seventy years with Mr Portter until one day he asked her a favour. "I have an old friend in New York City who is in need of some company. I will be taking a break from all this so I would like you to go." Mr Portter requested. Kyda jumped at the chance thinking it was another Dr or historian of some sort. ========== So in January 2000 upon arriving in New York City Kyda found that she couldn't have been more wrong about Mr Portters Friend. He was a strange man that never really came outside but owned a small cafe that was hidden from view down a quaint little alleyway near central park. Kyda was tasked with looking after the shop and all its goings on, and that is where you can find her today, in the quiet unknown Cafe Rose.