1.23 It Starts with Intrigue


As far as first kisses go, this is the rare kind verging on perfect. Not a shabby way to welcome the year.

 “Happy New Year, Cordelia.” I whisper when our lips part. She gets adorably flustered, which is quite rewarding on its own.

But what’s even more remarkable are the sprites circling around us, glowing a bright green colour. It would appear they’re enjoying themselves, perverted little things.

“Have you ever seen them do that?” I ask her.

She doesn’t answer straight away. “I’ve seen them happy before, but not to this level. It’s like they’re on a high.”

“I can’t say I blame them.” I tell her. She blushes, looking away.

Cordelia. It’s hard not to fall for that sweet charm of hers. L Faba said I’m only interested in the girl because she’s a riddle to be solved. Naturally L Faba would feel that way. Simeon has not offered his opinion, but I know what he thinks. Are the two of them right?

Have I been known to exaggerate my sentiments? Of course. Would she have piqued my interest without the curious sprite predicament? Unlikely. But does that mean there’s nothing of note to her beyond that? Not necessarily.

She is a riddle, but she’s a beautiful riddle. There’s a certain rawness to the way she approaches the world, a curious innocence. But it is precisely that same innocence that complicates matters. Best case scenario, I ruin that innocence, and Cordelia’s biggest appeal will be gone forever. Worst case scenario, it will all crash and burn, right in my face. I don’t know how I feel about that.

For now, though, it has been entertaining to watch her blossom, especially tonight, in that stunning gown – I’ve really outdone myself. And the effect the kiss had on the sprites… certainly rouses some intrigue. It always starts with intrigue…

Of course, the night has brought some unforeseen events too.

First, it was that… presence. Something unusual. I’m powerful, but tonight at the Von Haunt Estate, I’m not the only one. I’ve been here before. Seen the spirits who haunt these grounds. But they’re harmless. This is different. I can sense it. Something potent.

There was some kind of power within that strange couple we saw as we entered. I’m not sure what they are exactly, but it’s neither human, nor spellcaster. Their energy… I could tell even Cordelia could feel it. Naturally, she found it unnerving. I, on the other hand, thought it fascinating.

I excused myself at one point of the night to go investigate, but it was fruitless.

Not only could I not locate them, the presence disappearing as soon as I got close; all that attempt resulted in was me losing Cordelia until I tracked her down on that balcony.

Which leads me to the other incident. Cordelia sharing a piece of her past was… unexpected. She blames herself for the death of her mother. The irony is not lost on me.

A part of me wants her to learn that self-blame will not serve her. Of course, I could share a thing or two on the matter, but that would most certainly chip away at her innocence, and no less change that sweet way she looks at me. I think not.

Needless to say, a masquerade ball was clearly not the ideal choice of event to bring her along to. But if life didn’t throw a curveball every now and then, it would be dreadfully boring. Lesson learned for next time, I suppose.

To salvage the situation, I suggest that we explore the maze instead of heading back down to the ballroom. I may have an ulterior motive. That presence I sensed earlier seems to be looming over the gardens now. I still can’t quite determine what it is, but it is powerful.

Fortunately, powerful is my expertise. I will not fail twice in one night. If there’s power within the maze, I will find it. Like a moth to a flame, my old teacher had said. Except that moths get scorched by the fire. I do not. She should have known that. It doesn’t matter. She rots in hell now.

I let Cordelia go ahead and I turn off in the opposite direction, drawn to the presence. It didn’t take long to find it. I’m getting closer. Sensing danger, I get my wand at the ready. Not that I’m feeling particularly worried. Curiosity propels me closer…

It is one half of that couple. Except now I get to have a much closer look. The earie presence, the ash skin, and of course, the teeth… I wasn’t wrong. The two of them are not human. The being is studying me almost as intently as I am him. He did not expect me. But he was looking for someone. Something…

“You’re hunting.” I observed. His eyes stopped fixating on my wand, and looked directly into mine. Pleasant eyes. Unusual colour.

“And you’re not a willing victim.” His tone was more curious than menacing. “What are you?”

I do not lower my wand. “You first.”

He takes a step closer towards me. “I think you know.”

“You are dead.” I say the obvious out loud.

“Undead, actually.” He says, removing his mask. “But you… you are not, but you’re not exactly mortal, either. How does a human come to power that matches one of a grand master vampire?”

“I am a spellcaster. The sage of untamed magic,” I can’t help but add. Can’t let him think I am some sort of a commoner.

His face is very handsome. Symmetrical. He was young when the change happened. But he isn’t old now, either. Too direct to be ancient. “You are no master vampire, though.” I tell him.

“No. My maker is one.” He confirms my assumption. “But who knows. Maybe one day, I will become one.”

His manner of speaking lacks resolve. He does not believe his last statement, whether he knows it or not. He craves power, yes, but a different kind. A different purpose. Of course, we all want power for different reasons…

“I wouldn’t be so certain you have it in you.” I lower my wand. He will not attack me. He is just as intrigued as I am at this point, even though he tries to hide it. “It would take a lot of power to become a master vampire, I’d wager.”

“What do you know about vampires?” He is annoyed. I must have struck a chord.

“Not very much.” I admit. “But I know about power. It might be mutually beneficial for us to get to know each other a little better.”

He doesn’t reply immediately. Must mean he’s considering it, then.

“You have nothing I want.” He says finally. Lies.

“If you say so.” I treat him to one of my dazzling smiles.

I hear Cordelia looking for me. “Morgyn!” I don’t answer her call. I don’t want her to come here, not now. It wouldn’t be safe for her to come this close to a vampire, I tell myself. That’s all it is.

Her voice has distracted me. A mistake. The vampire notices. “Sounds like even the sage of untamed magic has a vice.” He smirks. He’s taunting me.

“Hardly as many as a vampire does.” I reassert my dominance. “Untamed magic draws power from three elements; lightning, ice and fire. Tell me, how do vampires fare with fire?”

He gives me a look I can’t quite decipher. “Perhaps you do have something I want after all.”

Cordelia is getting closer. We can both hear her footsteps in the grass. 

“Forgotten Hollow.” He says quietly. “That’s where you can find me.”

Just as Cordelia emerges from behind the corner, he disappears, almost within an instant. That speed of travel should be unheard of outside of the magic realm.

“Where have you been?” She bursts out. Her unfiltered emotion is in direct contrast with her elegant outfit and hair. It’s quite precious.

“I found something in the maze. Someone.” I tell her truthfully. She doesn’t need to know the details. Or how captivating the vampire was… “We should return to Glimmerbrook. I’m not sure if you’re safe here.”

The irritation in her face is gone. She’s scared. She draws closer so that we can teleport.

She’s clinging on to me, wanting me to protect her, I’d imagine. I notice the sprites will not be joining us for the trip back. They’re gone again, it would appear.

The vampire’s words keep ringing in my head. Forgotten Hollow.

Intrigue. It always starts with intrigue.

30 thoughts on “1.23 It Starts with Intrigue

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  1. Yeah! This was a stacked ol’ slice of our favourite cake.

    I love me some vampires! (did you know?) What does Simeon think? What sinister disasters lurk in the past? I could wildly speculate but I’d be here all day.

    Gosh, even Morgyn doesn’t seem to know what they want. What hope do the rest of us have? Still a donut, power hungry, careless. Oh help, for all the flaws, I’m starting to like them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have a sweet tooth.

      Hah, I would have never guessed 😛 Lesser known fact, I love vampires too. Disasters, lurking? No clue what you’re talking about here. I’ll happily accept speculations and bets though.

      Ooh. Nice! Welcome to my world. All the things you said about Morgyn here are a 100% true, and definitely among some of their flaws – and it’s not even all of them. And yet, I absolutely adore Morgyn. Sue me 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. So with mr. tall, dark and handsome having a standoff with Morgyn… where is the other one? The one that seems WAY more dangerous and was giving off all those creepy vibes? Is she stalking Cordelia or did she go off to eat some other unsuspecting victim?

    For real, though – if she WAS going for Cordelia, then Morgyn leaving her alone in the maze could have ended very, very badly. Isn’t the idea of romantic mazes to, you know, get lost together? Maybe I’ve been doing it wrong all my life…

    Side note, Cordelia still looks stunning in every picture.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol Mr tall, dark and handsome 😀

      You’re right, things could have potentially gotten hairy. Luckily, we’ll probably never see the vampire duo again and everything will be fine and dandy, right? (pun intended) So no need to worry at all……

      And thanks! She did look so beautiful all dolled up.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. YES everything will be fine and Dandy indeed! Morgyn will go to Forgotten Hollow and get horribly stuck as a vampire spawn, Cordelia will learn to talk with the sprites and find out they’re actually super friendly, Dandy will perfect the art of pancake making and violin-ing, and nothing bad is going to happen whatsoever! =D
        And maybe Morgyn will perish. But that’s a sacrifice I’m willing to have him make.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Haha! I knew those two were vampires. But it’s interesting, I totally thought Morgyn was in on their secret or knew them, but surprise, they didn’t know them. I love to be surprised!

    I wonder where the other vampire went? I wonder if she is the one that turned the vampire in the maze, the master vampire he was talking about?

    I love that this is written in first-person. And I am now even more curious about Morgyn. He is a complicated and secretive character. I also want to know what happened to their teacher? If Morgyn had anything to do with their teacher’s death? Sounds like there wasn’t much love there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha indeed, they were being pretty sketchy. And Morgyn knew there was something going on, but didn’t know what exactly. My versions of the sages are definitely not all-knowing. Don’t get me wrong, they know a lot and certainly have some tricks up their sleeves, but you could say most of their knowledge doesn’t transcend their own DLC haha.

      Good questions about the other vampire! Perhaps we’ll find out.

      Morgyn is complicated for sure. I obviously can’t get into what went on with their mentor, but I can confirm there definitely wan’t any love.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Well, poo. I caught up. 🙂

    This is a fun story. L Faba is just the kind of character we love to hate, and there’s plenty of enigma to be had with the others. I have my own theories, but I’ll keep them to myself.

    Looking forward to more!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ooh I suspected they were vampires but dang I enjoyed the reveal. That last picture of Cordelia and Morgyn is so pretty :> Are we going to get more Morgyn povs? It’ll be awesome if we can follow him to Forgotten Hollow xD

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yep, vampy vampires indeed. They barely tried to hide it haha. And I’m glad you liked the reveal 🙂

      Hmm let’s just say the viewpoints are going to expand quite a bit going forward 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Dangggg, how can I be rooting against Cordelia? You made that vampire way too enticing. I understand why Morgyn couldn’t resist.

    I love that they spent the beginning of this chapter being like: listen, I’m a little flighty but I like Cordelia and I’m going stick with—oh, is that a vampire?

    Really though, I loved the shift to Morgyn’s perspective. It put a whole new spin on things and ramped up the danger that I am 1000% sure Cordelia is in.

    Ugh, this is not helping my Morgyn is trouble radar, either. I don’t think they are cruel, like L. Faba but they are pretty self-absorbed. I can see them getting Cordelia hurt because they are in pursuit of something they want.

    I can’t get that line out of my head, it’s so great: Intrigue. It always starts with intrigue.

    You have a real gift for getting a character’s inner emotions across with just a simple phrase. Ugh. LOVE IT.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I had a lot of fun writing from Morgyn’s POV in first person – it started out as a little exercise, and turned into a chapter. The only downside is now I can’t get Morgyn’s yapping out of my head (they’re mostly just going on about how brilliant they are).

      Haha! Well of course the vampire has to be enticing, got to make it believable, right? 😇

      Yep, what you said is a spot on summary of Morgyn’s thoughts 😀 “Cordelia is adorable, people should get off my case, I’m enjoying- ooh, shiny thing!” 😂

      Thank you ❤️

      Liked by 2 people

  7. I wouldn’t mind to see Morgyn crash an burn, actually 🤭🤭

    On the other hand, I really enjoyed the little standoff with Mr. tall dark and handsome. They’re both on a much more equal level and I liked their little tit for tat conversation 😏
    Do I ship this? Certainly more than anything else in this story so far 😈

    Liked by 1 person


    Best case scenario, I ruin that innocence, and Cordelia’s biggest appeal will be gone forever.

    Yiiiiikes. Fetishizing innocence: red flag. Ditto for youth or trauma. Okay, Morgyn’s juggling so many ideas, I’m going to have to create a scorecard:

    Calling out the sprites because they need to go to horny jail: +1
    Needing to go to horny jail themselves: +1, oddly enough
    The whole innocence thing, dude HOW big’s the age gap?!: -10
    Analyzing his attraction to Cordelia instead of enjoying her company: -1, Morg, chill
    Acknowledging Bernard’s existence: +10
    Practically admitting to murder: 0, see previous bullet point
    But not exactly showing remorse about it: -1
    Attention span of small bug: 0
    Keeping the vampires secret: 0
    Possibly foreshadowing Cordelia’s hidden abilities by noting her speed: +??

    So a net positive, and put my hat in the ring for Morgeveryone, please and thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Damn, that Bernard vision! 😀 But yes, there he is, engrossed in his painting and not giving a rat’s bum about Morgyn and Cordelia on the balcony 🙂

      Wouldn’t be Morgyn (or at least my version of Morgyn) if they weren’t casually waving a red flag or two at any given moment.

      Hahahaha ok, this tally is gold. Love it, especially the scoring criteria. Looks like bisexual disaster bonus tipped it from that ambivalence, haha. I mean, in my mind, Morgyn is pansexual, but same effect.

      Morgeveryone is a solid ship, I concur.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I was thinking they might be vampires but I wasn’t sure! Now this is very intriguing as Morgyn put it. I’m glad to see that they are actually interested in Cordelia and not just using her. Their romance is very sweet!

    Liked by 1 person

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