Wandering around Italy alone was not a great idea on your part. You knew this, of course. But what was a girl to do? The dorm room was stuffy, small. Boring. So you decided to explore the beautiful city of Volterra, and when a beautiful woman approached you and asked if you would be interested in partaking on a free tour, who were you to say no?
Her name was Heidi, and a few minutes later, you found yourself trailing behind a large group of tourists as Heidi led the crowd through the halls of a glorious, old castle. You were excited at first. You'd seen the castle from your dorm, and thought it was nothing short of beautiful, and you had no idea they offered tours!
Your enjoyment was short lived.
Ever since you were little, you seemed to have a talent for sensing danger. It was probably how your dumbass had survived so long. You were not known for you self-preservation, and therefore you relied on avoiding bad situations all together, based off your gut feelings.
You were having one of those feelings now. Suddenly, the castle felt too cold, Heidi's voice sounded too sweet, and this entire tour felt too sketchy. You waited until Heidi's back was turned, and abruptly halted your step. No one noticed, and you breathed a sigh of relief when the last of the group turned the corner, out of sight. You turned on your heel, prepared to navigate your way out the way you'd come.
You'd only made it two steps before you ran straight into someone's chest, someone who definitely hadn't been there a moment ago. You let out a small noise of surprise on impact, placing your hands on the person to steady yourself without thinking.
Hands came up to grab your wrists almost violently, and you winced from the pressure and the shocking cold of this person's skin.
You looked up nervously, and bit your lip in shock when your eyes met bright red ones. The man, or rather, boy, as he appeared close to your young age of 17, looked angry, but when your eyes met, his features softened ever so slightly. His grip loosened too, now less intimidating and more steadying.
"You're not supposed to leave the group," he frowned. His voice was melodic to your ears and you swallowed. "I know but I-I need to go-" you tried tugging your wrists out of his grip, but the boy wouldn't let go. "Why?" He demanded, looking suspicious. Your brow furrowed. "I can't explain it without sounding stupid, but something just feels off! I have to go, something's about to happen, I can feel it."
The boy looked to be waging an intense internal war with himself.
His eyes stayed trained on you all the while, and you found yourself growing more and more nervous. His eyes darted down the hall, and finally, he opened his mouth and spoke. "You don't know why you feel like this?"
"No clue," you responded truthfully.
He seemed to make his decision, dropping one of your wrists but maintaining his hold on the other. "Then I will escort you out. Don't want you getting lost. Come." He turned and began pulling you along. He was fast, and ended up half dragging you as you struggled to keep up with your rather short stature.
"Humans," he grumbled to himself.
What an odd thing to say.
In under two minutes, you found yourself at the doors in which you'd came, thanks to this strange boy with the red eyes. "Goodbye," he stated, shoving you outside. You stumbled but quickly caught yourself, turning on your heel before he could close the doors. "Wait! What's your name?"
"Alec. Now run."
"Alec, my boy, you're late!" Aro frowned. "Saved you some, brother," Jane said, throwing a screaming woman at Alec's feet. Hungry, he drank his fill before explaining his absence for feeding time.
"Something happened," he stated, discarding the drained body down the sewer grate. Marcus was staring at him with an unusual look on his face, and Alec knew that he must already know with his gift. Aro looked concerned. "Come here, child, let me see." Everyone watched curiously as Aro took Alec's hand too see what Alec had experienced.
The King's eyes widened, and array of different expressions fluttered across his face. Finally, he seemed to decide that whatever he had seen was overall good, because he pulled away from Alec with a smile.
"Alec met his mate!" He beamed at his brothers before turning back to Alec.
His smile faltered slightly. "And you let her go. I'm sure you have a fine reason for it, but you do know how dangerous that is to our kind." Aro's tone was that of a father scolding his son. Alec shifted slightly. "Admittedly... I may have panicked." Aro let out a hearty laugh and even Marcus smiled.
"That's fine, just fine!" Aro chortled. "She's still in the city no doubt. We'll go out and fetch her tonight."
Jane had been oddly quiet during the exchange, unmoving and expression unchanging even as everyone else in the room congratulated her brother. Only Heidi noticed the shift in Jane's mood as Alec and Felix began to bicker on the appropriate way to bring the human back without scaring her.
"Are you alright, Jane?"
Heidi's voice was quiet; Jane would be more willing to answer if there was no attention on her.
"I... I'm not sure."
"What troubles you?"
"Alec's mate... she's a human."
"Well she won't be for long," Heidi assured her.
"But..." Jane chewed her bottom lip nervously, and in that moment, Heidi was reminded of just how young the twins really were. "What if she doesn't want to give up her humanity? What if she doesn't want Alec? That would destroy him! A-and what if... what if they do hit it off? What if he doesn't have time for me anymore? I know our mate is our first priority, but what if I'm not even a second priority anymore? He's all I have, Heidi, he's all I've had for hundreds of years."
Heidi opened her hand to provide Jane the option of holding it for comfort. Jane took it. "Well you have us, Jane. You and Alec aren't alone anymore. And your worries are totally valid, honey, I promise you Alec will understand your concerns. I don't know how his mate will react so I'm not going to lie to you and say it will definitely work out. But as far as he and her hitting it off, you will always be a priority to Alec. You're his sister. A mate can't change that."
Heidi thought for a moment. She'd actually met Alec's mate of course. She'd been the one to lure her in after all. She was a pretty little thing. Sweet personality as well, conversing with her had been so enjoyable Heidi had almost felt bad about going through with trapping her. But it worked out she supposed.
"I've met her. Alec's mate," she said. "She's a lovely little thing. I promise you she won't try to take Alec from you if they do hit it off. Who knows, you may even gain a friend in her."
Jane didn't look convinced.
"Well you'll find out how accepting she is of your brother tonight. Perhaps throw your opinion into the ring. If she is brought in the wrong way, it will greatly impact her decision regarding Alec."
Jane considered Heidi's words, before giving a dry chuckle. "A good idea, but I am not known for my gentle approaches."
The two laughed before turning their attention back to the conversation at hand. "Demetri, you will track her, Alec, you will retrieve her. Just the two of you are to go, and she shall be fetched by tomorrow's dawn. It is decided," Aro announced, clapping his hands together.
Jane bristled at being left out of the retrieval, but Alec didn't notice, too focused on the pleasure that things were going his way.