"No," I blurted out instantly. Protecting her was a reflex, and turning her into what she feared…oh God. I couldn't do it.

Dimitri's face showed no sympathy. "Then no deal."

He was an immovable wall, I could tell. There would be no bargaining for another condition. The show of dominance over me was the only love towards me he would show in front of others.

"Do I have to do it now?" I asked. Perhaps I could postpone it…make another Strigoi do it for me…

He shook his head. "No. But the sooner the better." Dimitri finally raised his voice. "Vasilisa Dragomir will be awakened by Roza Belikov. If you dare touch her before we do…" He gave a dark, fanged grin. A very sexy grin. "I will rip out your throat and set you on fire."

Well my idea was blown out of the water.

Lissa had to speak. "Awakened? Wha-what's that?" She moved as far away from Dimitri as she could in her cage.

He kept the grin and turned to her. "You have been blessed. You will be given a new life."

"WHAT?" She shrieked. "No! No! I refuse! I will not become a mon-"

"Shut up, stupid girl." His grin was gone. Dimitri was snarling. In a flash, he was at the cage. "Be glad that I'm not going to torture and kill you for everything you've done to my dear Roza. Instead, you were given an offer of a lifetime."

She whimpered. He turned back to me. "Roza? Anything you would like to say?"

I slowly walked to the cage and looked at my former best friend. She was in a sniveling heap. Then I turned to my lover.

"I'm hungry. Let's go."

He nodded. "Of course. Would you prefer to hunt, or have your food delivered?"

"Hmmm…" I mused. "What's the difference?"

He grinned. "Hunting is much more exciting, and we get to explore the city. Together." Soft fingers laced through mine. Dimitri regained a neutral face. "But it's your choice."

Obviously, Dimitri wanted to hunt. I decided to comply with what he wanted…it would be exciting to see a Russian city through his eyes. "Let's hunt, then." I faced Lissa. "Goodbye for now."

He took my hand and guided me to an elevator with high-tech security. With the push of a button, we descended (I could tell because the button said B1 for basement) a floor and after clearance entered a garage. It was similar to one that you would see at an airport. I noticed many expensive cars and wondered which we'd be using.

A Strigoi rushed up to us. "Ah, Dimitri! The Veyron has finally arrived." Dimitri's face lit up immediately, and continued to grow brighter when he was handed the keys.

"We're going off to hunt. Which tunnel to Novosibirsk is the clearest?"

He took out a clipboard and examined it for a few moments. "Seven. Lucky for you, it's also the straightest."

"Good. Thank you. That will be all." His tone was brisk, and he guided me towards a black car with red stripes and undertones. It wasn't like any other car I had seen before. He activated it from a distance, and I got in the passengers side without even thinking. Leather interior. Black with red, like the rest of the car. Expensive.

After Dimitri folded his frame into the driver's chair. I randomly noticed that although this was a sports car, it was high enough so that Dimitri's head had plenty of clearance. Also, the chairs were set back so that his long frame fit perfectly.

"What kind of car is this?" The car roared to life. Dimitri was still smiling.

"Bugatti Veyron. The fastest street-legal car on Earth." The car was on a moving platform that positioned itself in front of a medium-sized tunnel labeled '7-Novosibirsk', or at least I assumed that's what it said in Cyrillic letters.

And we were off. Damn. This thing was fast. We went from 0-200 in less than a minute

"It can outspeed a jet plane," he added. "Horrible gas mileage. But by the time we run out, we'll be there."

"Wow." I was speechless…for a few seconds. Then the light bulb came on. "Will I ever get a chance at driving this baby?"

"NO!" He growled, putting harsh eyes on me but for a second. "You will get your own, if you desire. But this one is mine."

"Well okay then." The car was silent. Dimitri apparently didn't want the radio on.

He put his hand out, a gesture of apology. I accepted. We held hands for the rest of the ride without speaking a word.

Finally, we stopped in a smaller garage filled with a variety of cars, expensive and not. We parked, exited the car, and Dimitri paid a man to fill the car up and clean it. There was some sort of threat. As we exited the garage, I noticed it was hooked up to a club titled something in Russian. I assumed that's where most of the tunnels led to - Strigoi-led clubs.

It was after walking for a while I realized this is where I first saw my lover as a Strigoi. This very area, in fact. I stopped for a moment.

"What is it, Roza? I'm getting hungry." He was PMSing tonight.

"Hey bitchy. This is where I first saw you as the new you. The better you." The not-as-pansy-ish him.

"And?" He didn't appear interested.

"I don't know."He pulled me along. "You are still very weak, Roza. So sentimental…You will change after the wedding, I hope."

I glared at him. "When is that, anyways?"

He smirked. "It is not for you to know yet. However, I can tell you where our honeymoon will be."

My ears perked up. "Oh? Where? Please don't say a private island outside Brazil."

We were walking down the sidewalk, people giving us odd looks because we spoke English. He guided me down a dark alley.

Once we were there, he laughed. "No, I don't own a private island. Yet. We will someday, you know."

I was growing impatient. "Yeah, yeah. Where are we going?"

"Anywhere you want to go, Roza. It's up to you. But decide later, we must feast now. Stay here."

He walked out to the sidewalk and used his mastery of Russian to persuade a young blonde girl to come with him into the alley. She resembled Lissa somewhat, only the eyes were a darker shade of green.

"For you, dear Roza. Use it as practice."

I was lurking in the darkness, and as she inquired as to what he had said and to whom, I was on her. My fangs pierced her skin, and I drained her of every drop of blood in her body.

Oh, it felt so good. It felt amazing. She dropped to the ground, lifeless. I kicked her. It wasn't Lissa, but I felt like it was. The thought of killing Lissa was much easier for me now.

Dimitri had finished with his breakfast, a young male. I almost felt a pang of jealousy for the euphoria he had felt while dying.

"Ah, a young couple snuffed out forever." He grinned and took me into his arms, winding his fingers through my hair. "What would you like to do next, my love?"

Just then, a cellphone rang. Dimitri's. He answered it in a heartbeat, and was cursing out who had called him. After a bit of angry conversation, he yelled, "WHAT?". A moment passed with hurried voices on the other end, then Dimitri threw his phone against the ground. It shattered like began to drag me out of the alley in a hurry. Before I asked what was going on, he explained all of it to me. "Christian has found and awakened Lissa."