Chapter 42:


Evelyn opens her eyes slowly, unsure of where she was. It's dark, but she's sure she can feel grass underneath her. She moves slowly, taking in her surroundings. It looks to be a forest at the dead of night. However she doesn't really remember how she got here. Or even where 'here' was. After a few minutes of wondering she finally runs into someone. A handsome Imperial male who looked familiar. "Lucien?" He gives her a charming smile. "Listener." She shivers at his voice. "Is...this the Void, am I..?" "Dead, no, you are in the between." She rises her bow at this. "You are becoming a vampire. You'll know more when you awake." This surprises her, she doesn't remember remember coming in contact with a vampire. But all she can really do is wait. "Why are you here?" "The Dread father sent me here. The veil here is thin, it allows you to summon me to your side." 'You're alone?" "No, other brothers and sister rest here. But we have a stronger connection." She hadn't summoned him in awhile, but he was always here waiting for her. If it bothers him, he doesn't say so. There's something peaceful about this place. Maybe because it just reminds her of a starless night. "So when I do die?" He laughs deeply. "Not for me to say, I don't think anyone knows what will become of you. However I wouldn't worry to much about it." He glances up before turning back to her. "Your time is up, time to wake up my Listener."

Evelyn wakes up slowly, feeling light headed. She really doesn't remember much and isn't to sure where she is. She slowly sits up, realizing she's in her room in the Sanctuary. Artemis is asleep at her side. Half his body on his chair, the other half on the bed. She can't help but smirk as she runs her hand through his hair. He jumps a bit and blinks. "You're awake!" "I am...what happened?" He takes a small deep breath. He has no idea where to even start. "What's the last thing you remember?" She leans her head back. "I remember running after that dragon and getting the sense knocked out of me." He chuckles softly, but it's short lived. "Something was effecting dragons...and you. I even rode all the way to High Hrothgar...." Her eyes go wide at this. "What happened?" "Paarthurnax is dead...the dragon rammed his head against the Word Wall until his skull cracked." She covers her mouth, trying her best not to cry. "So this is effecting all of them..." "That's my guess. We had no idea what it would do to you...so..." "You had me turn." He glances down but nods slowly. "Adrian came up with the idea..." She reaches over to him and holds his hand. It was extreme, but Artemis was out of options. "So I'm a vampire now.." She runs her tongue over her fangs. "Any idea what's going on?" Artemis shakes his head. "Some kind of sickness, when Orthjolf drank your blood, he spit it out quick.." She lets out a low hum at this. But she didn't have an answer either.

"I guess there's nothing we can really do. Other then make sure whatever is effecting the dragons doesn't cause to much damage." "The Companions are taking care of it...haven't really gotten any word but I've been here.." He looks down a bit as she moves closer and smiles at him. "Thank you." He looks up slowly. "I didn't want to lose you..." He didn't always say it out loud but he loved her deeply. He honestly wouldn't know what to do without her. They had been together for so long, it was one of the longest relationship he's ever had. She just keeps running her hand through his hair, brushing it back. "I'm sorry it came to this. I know how you felt about becoming a vampire..." He rarely shows guilt, but she could see it in his eyes. She shakes her head slowly at him. "It's fine, not my first choice, but it was the only way. Honestly I feel fine now. I don't remember anything though." Really the last thing she remembers is the dragon smacking her across the head and nothing else. "Where's Adrian?" Artemis glances around, the boy had left an hour ago. "Sleeping no doubt, he stayed up for as long as he could..." "Poor thing, well at least he didn't get my insomnia" Artemis just shakes his head at this. She slowly gets out of bed and he quickly jumps up. She just smiles at him, letting him know she was fine. Artemis gives her space, but glances the other way. He does this when there's something on his mind. "Something wrong?"

It takes him a moment or so to say anything. "I believe our son is with someone." She tilts her head at this. Last she remembered Adrian wasn't interested in anyone. "Do you know who?" "I have no proof and still need to talk to the boy. But I believe it's Orthjolf." Her brows shoot up at this. "Really now...you sure?" "He had bite marks on his neck..." She lets out a low. "Ah...so odd taste in men gets passed down." He glares at her and she just giggles. "I'm joking...honestly. I mean as long as he's careful..." She really wasn't sure what to say. Artemis doesn't seem as sure about any of this, but she places her hand on his shoulder. "We'll talk to him once he's awake and make sure this is something he wants. Sure it's a bit odd, but hell I'm not really all to surprised by it." She shrugs her shoulders a bit. He just lets out a low sound. "I don't like the idea of our son being with a vampire." "Understandable, but said vampire saved my butt, so we owe him that much." He turns his back to her, not liking she's right. She just wraps her arms around him and pulls him close. "We'll deal with it later....right now I have something else on mind." He rises his brow, but she just smiles and they end up on the floor. After a few rolls on the floor and him making sure she didn't bite him. Which quickly lead to round four, they joined the others. Orthjolf was awake, reading a book. The vampire rises his gaze and smiles. "You're awake, good to see it worked." She nods her head to him. "I thank you. Any idea what could have been effecting me?" He shakes his head. "If it's some kind of new disease, then it's nothing I'm aware of."

Her mouth twitches slightly. "Damn....well the good news is I'm...well not alive.." Her brows move down slightly. "Well I'm of more sound of mind." Orthjolf chuckles at this. "Aye, whatever it was seems to effect the mind." He looks her over, more to make sure she was doing okay. "How's Adrian?" "Sleeping last I check, took forever to get the poor boy to sleep." She keeps a close eye on the vampire and he rises his hands. Realizing the jig was up. "I assure you all will be explained." "Oh I'm sure." She turns and makes her way to the row of rooms the Sanctuary had. It doesn't take long for her to find her son. He was dead asleep, face down in his pillow. She just watches him for a minute and can't help but smile. No matter how old he got he was still her child. She walks over to him slowly and places her hand on his back. He lets out a small snort. "I don't want to get up...." She bites her lip to not laugh. He never was a morning person. "Hun." That wakes him and he quickly turns to her. "Mum!" He knocks her over in a crushing hug. She just holds onto him as tightly as she could. "I'm fine, really.." She blinks as he sniffs and just holds onto her tightly. "I was so worried..." She leans into him, rubbing his back lightly. "Shhh it's okay..." He lets out another sniff as he slowly lets her go. "What do you remember?" "Not much, just the dragon attacking me, what did I miss?" It takes him a minute to answer. "You weren't in right state of mind. You would just repeat things over and over. When father left to find answers you just.....stopped. You just stood there, unmoving. I was so scared seeing you like that..."

His hands were shaking at this point as he sits there. "Took me forever to get you to lay in bed. Then when father returned with news on what happened to Paarthurnax, I feared the worse...." She feels bad he had to go through all of that pain and uncertainty. She places her hand on his cheek lightly. "I'm so sorry I worried you." He gives her a small smile and ends up hugging her again. "I'm just so glad to see you alive...well." He blinks then shrugs. "Well you know what I mean." She laughs softly. "Aye, I understand." She just pulls him close, his head on her shoulder. He was just happy to hug her once again. "I'm so sorry I had you turned." He pulls away after a minute. "It was the only answer we could think of..." "Trust me, I'm not angry. You saved me. Still it hardly answers what in the world went wrong. The fact that Paarthurnax is gone..." That part still hurt her greatly. She doesn't even want to know what the Graybeards are going to do now. "I think I can be okay with being a vampire. At least until we can find answers. Once enough time passes I can always look into a cure." Her mouth twitches again as she gives it some thought. "Still have my dragons soul...so I wonder how this will change." Adrian lets out a low hum. "For the most part, I don't think it would change much. But we won't really know for sure. Though waiting might not be a bad idea. Just no going out into the sun." "Well shoot there went my plans." He sort of glares at her, but she just smiles.

"Come on you, we have a few things to talk about." He rises his brow at her, but she leads him to where Artemis was waiting. "So anything you wish to tell us?" Adrian shuffles but places his hands behind his back. "I...may have ended up with Orthjolf before you got hurt.." Evelyn watches him closely. "It just kind of happened...I'm not even really sure how to put it into words.." It's new so he has no idea if he should even consider it as a 'relationship'. He was still young and still learning about all of this stuff. "Evelyn just lets out a low chuckle as she shakes her head. "Oh hun." Arian just shrugs his shoulders. He just needed more time to figure things out. She's not even really sure how to approach this, but she was going to let Adrian figure it out. After all it was up to him to work out what he wanted to do with his life. For now the only thing she really wanted to focus on was what was going on. It was dark outside so she was able to step outside. The only thing she could think of was to try and make her way to the nearest sight a dragon had last been seen. Thanks to her Nightingale armor, she was able to hide her face. She talks to a few night guards and one of them spotted a dragon some time ago circling an old Imperial camp. She tanks the guard and makes her way to the camp. Artemis follows after her, staying at her side. She tilts her head to the side as they walk. "So does my being a vampire change anything?" He rises his brow, but shakes his head. "You ask after..?" He waves his hand and just just smirks. "Hey just want to make sure the fangs won't bother you." "As long as you don't take my blood I could care less." He would however offer her a bite if she really needed it. But he was going to keep that to himself.

It doesn't really take to long to reach the camp. The place had been destroyed by a dragon. It was laying in the snow, eating one of the tents. She just stands back and watches as Artemis just remains at her side. "I'm starting to think Adrian wasn't to far off.." She turns her head to him. "About what?" "It's some sort of Brain Rot...that effects dragons." She glances up, knowing the disease well enough. She rises her hand, but it oddly makes sense. "But...how...why now after all these years?" She crosses her arms, leaning her head to the side. The dragon was still eating, something, she wasn't to sure what it had picked up. At this rate it was going to kill itself by eating things that weren't food. "That remains to be seen. But it seems to effect them in different ways..." Artemis runs his fingers over his chin. "Paarthurnax killed himself, the dragon that attacked you was seen flying in circles...." It was an odd riddle and seeing a dragon now eating a tent pole only added to this strange mystery. "I'm going to try....TRY and talk to it.." Artemis holds her arm. "Try not to get hurt.." "I won't.." He hands over her weapons belt and she slowly makes her way over to the dragon. Which was now munching on a table. "Hey....HEY!!!" The dragon slowly turns it's head to her. There's something strange about the way it looks at her. It's head kind of twitches from time to time as if it couldn't keep still. The dragon roars, just roars at her, not saying a thing to her. It flaps it's wings to take off, but one of it's wings are clearly broken. So it's just flapping like crazy. She moves back and takes a deep breath. "JoorZahFrul!" She was still able to use her Thu'um at least and it hits the dragon, making it stop it's crazed flapping.

She waste no time on pulling out Charon's Claw and uses it against the dragon. Thrusting the sword through it's skull and killing it quickly. It quickly burns away as she takes its soul. Only, it makes her feel strangely cold. There's hardly any power to it, weak, confused. She feels it all and shivers. "The poor thing...it had no idea what was going on. All I felt was confusion..." She wraps her arms around herself as she turns to Artemis. "What should we do...I mean, outside of just ending them..." It was a hard path to follow, because that meant the Blades had been right. She hates the idea, but there really wasn't any other answer here. "We'll need more people. Hell we'll raise an army if we have to....even though I really don't want to." She still has a general waiting for her at Castle Dour. A replacement for Tullius when he finally passed on. "Not many people will have what it takes. But most of these dragons aren't in the right sense of mind to put up a fight..." Her eyes go wide as it slowly hits her. What of Odahviing, or even Durnehviir? She doubts whatever is happen will effect the undead dragon. She turns to a large open area. "DurNehViir!" A large purple portal opens and the large dragon slowly comes forth. It turns to her, tilting his head. "Qahnaarin it has been some time since we have seen one another." She can't help but hug the dragon around his neck. She's just happy to see at least one dragon that was of sound mind. "Thank Talos you're okay, you're feeling alright?" The dragon just leans it's head to her. "Of course Qahnaarin. Why wouldn't I be?" When it wasn't here, it was just waiting for her in the Soul Cairn after all.

"Never mind, I didn't think whatever was happening would effect you. However maybe you can find answers. Something is effecting all the dragons, causing them to act strangely." The dragon lets out a low sound. "I shall look into it, and return once I have answers." The dragon flaps his wings and takes off. Artemis watches the dragon before looking at her. "You think that's a good idea?" "He's undead, nothing will effect him. Even if it did all it would do is return him into the Soul Cairn. He's cursed and can't die so it's perfect." Artemis lets out a low hum at this and nods. "Right, we'll still head for Castle Dour and try to round up as many people as we can..." She could only nod at this. If they didn't stay on top of this. There was no telling the damage would cause in the long run. "Once we take care of this I wish to return to High Hrothgar..." She wants to pay her last respects to Paarthurnax. That is if Arngeir will even let her up there after everything that had happened. It wasn't her fault but who knows. They just might close their doors forever because of this. Artemis just places his hand on her shoulder. "We should get moving while we still can." He points to the horizon and she remembers she's on a time limit. He summons Blackfire and they ride together to Solitude as fast as they could before the sun could rise.