They enter the realm’s favorite blood tavern across from the tower and sit at the dark wood bar stocked with all the werewolf blood types, foreign and domestic, as well as spirits. When a werewolf enters the realm, he sells bottles of his own blood, which is consumed by vampires or purchased by witches who use it for spells or sell it at a premium to doctors for testing. The barkeep automatically places a crystal glass and lance in front of Drake. Drake removes his leather wristband and positions his wrist over the crystal glass, and, with the tip of the jeweled-encrusted gold lance, he punctures his wrist and quickly fills the glass with his blood. He hands the crystal glass to Henrietta and invites her, saying, “Drink, my lady.”
Henrietta, thirsty and hungry for blood, drinks his blood. Henrietta feels the rush of his strong blood pulsating through her as it replenishes her body. After she consumes the last drop of his coveted blood, with a seductive smile Henrietta pushes the glass back to Drake. Drake refills the glass and places his warm blood into her hand. As Henrietta gratefully enjoys her second glass, Drake orders rare steaks and raw oysters for them to feast on.
The tavern is filled with creatures that thrive in the dark. Many of the werewolves do not mind the full moon truce with the vampires who come to buy their blood. But no one can deny the undercurrents of suspicion and rivalry between the werewolves and vampires; most noticeable is the vampires’ territorial attitude toward the vampiressas. It is no secret that vampiressas love to visit Wolf Tower to drink werewolf blood for its human taste and robust rush that is not found in vampire blood, which is usually laced with rodent blood. It is not rare for vampiressas to become intimate with werewolves for their blood and physical strength, and the werewolves are attracted to vampiressas despite their monstrous blood, because they pass as fine ladies.
Henrietta is attracted to Drake’s delicious blood, his build, and strength. She is also charmed by his notoriety in Wolf Tower for being the strongest, and of legendary werewolf lineage. After they finish dinner, Henrietta, high on his blood and the delicious meal, sits on Drake’s lap, enjoying wine and getting more acquainted as she strokes his arm. In her eyes Drake recognizes the torment of an unrequited love. “Is he here?” Drake asks.
“Is who here?” Henrietta asks, confused.
“The man you love?”
“I do not know where he is, nor does it matter. What matters is that you are here,” Henrietta says, comforted.
Henrietta’s heart is eternally locked on Ivan’s heart, even though his heart will never lock onto hers. That is just the nature of their existence, but what crushes her soul is that he does not need or even crave her. When they are together it is because she seeks him out and the generosity of his compassion for her.
Henrietta can feel in Drake’s blood, which circulates through her heart that Drake is enchanted with her, and while it is not Ivan’s blood that pulsates through her heart, it is comforting to feel Drake’s genuine affection for her.
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