Princess Leena of Volterra
Orphan!Twilight. Esther Coleman never died in the pond, she survived, and she's irritated. Now, she joins the Volturi as a princess. Could this be her chance for the perfect life?
2. The Burning
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I tucked my Bible under my arm and placed my rucksack on my bag. This rucksack contained all my clothes and prostethics, everything I would neeed to continue as "Esther." Even though I was about to become an immortal, I still wanted to be "Esther". She was the part of me I hid behind, and nobody, I repeat, NOBODY was getting through her. Esther was the part of me that was still a little girl, that could STILL gain a family and a home. Now, perhaps I would find the place where I belonged, the place I shined. I gently patted my face to check my makeup. Still intact I see. I didn't need to touch it up that much. The vampires knew who I was, my true age and name. Together, we watched the last of the Coleman household fall to the ground. Everything in there was destroyed. A high-pitched scream of "LEENA KLAMMER!" could be heard from an approaching car. 'Shit!' I cursed to myself. I grabbed Aro's hand and squeezed it tight. 'NO!' I thought. "Fear not, sweetpops, I will attend to this."
Kate Coleman got out of her blue SUV and stormed over to where her burnt down house was. "NO!" She screamed, looking at the debri and ashes. "NO! NO! NO!" She ran her fingers through her hair so hard she pulled a few strands out. "NO! My home! My hommme!" She wailed, distraught. She rounded on me. "WHY!" She screamed, demented now. "WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS? WHY? WHY? WHY? GOD, WHY! ISN'T IT ENOUGH THAT YOU'VE TAKEN MY DIGNITY AND HUSBAND AWAY FROM ME! MUST YOU DESTROY MY HOME TOO? YOU BITCH, LEENA KLAMMER, YOU FUCKING BITCH! AND ARE YOU STILL WEARING THAT FUCKING DRESS? GOD, WOMAN, YOU ARE THIRTY-THREE YEARS OLD! STOP ACTING LIKE A CHILD! GROW UP! STOP PRETENDING YOU CAN HIDE FROM THE WORLD IF YOU DRESS LIKE A LITTLE GIRL! TAKE SOME RESPONSIBILITY! YOU DISGUST ME! LOOK AT HOW YOU HANG ON THAT POOR MANS ARM LIKE A LOST PUPPY! HAVE SOME SELF-RESPECT YOU WITCH! WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE?" She pointed to the three vampires standing with amused expressions on their faces (even Marcus) "IS THIS ANOTHER PLOY, LEENA? THREE MEN, THREE DADDIES SO YOU CAN HAVE YOUR PICK AND MURDER WHOEVER REFUSES TO SLEEP WITH YOU? DON'T YOU SEE THAT IF YOU ACTED YOUR AGE, YOU'D GET A MAN? GOD, LEENA, I AM CALLING THE COPS ON YOU RIGHT NOW, YOU HEAR? DOCTOR VARAVA WILL HAVE YOU BACK IN THAT CELL IN ESTONIA WHERE YOU BELONG!"
I smiled a childish smile at her. Kate turned to Aro. "I'm sorry sir, that was rude of me. I am Katherine Coleman, but you may call me Kate. Please believe me when I say that child on your arm is no child. She's a sociopathic maniac, and if you hand her over to the police right now it may just save your life and many others." She held her hand out for me. Aro gently squeezed me tighter. "Kate, a wonderful name. I'm Aro, and this is Caius and Marcus." He gently kissed the top of my head, and extremly fatherly gesture. "Where is Maxine?" He asked. "How do you know-?" Kate asked. "It's vital to little Leena here that young Maxine comes to no harm, and I am afraid I can control my thirst no longer. I will ask you once more. Where. Is. Maxine?" "I in her grandmother's," Kate stammered. "She is not with me, Aro, I assure you." Aro smiled and touched my face. "Shh, little one, she will bring no harm to you." He dropped my hand. "Little Leena, get into the car. Caius, Marcus, escort little Leena over there, please." Kate's eyes widened. She began backing away as Aro advanced closer to her. It happened in a flash. Kate screamed once and then he bit her, sucking on the blood until she went limp. He dropped her body on the floor and walked away. I walked to her corpse and spat on it. I took a knife out of my rucksack and slashed the letters "LK" on her chest. "She will always belong to me." I said with venom in my voice. Aro smiled and squeezed my hand. "Yes, yes she will, sweetpops." He gently bent down and closed Kate's eyes; there was something horribly degrading about the action. My smile grew wider.
Aro and I got into the car. I took off my rucksack and placed it in my lap. Caius put the key in the ignition and revved up the car. He reversed the car out of the driveway and away from the debri and dead corpse that lay in amongst the flames. I could still smell the sweet aroma of fire wafting through the air. Fire cleanses and washes away the dirt of life. I noticed Kate's iphone on the dashboard. "Daddy," I said sweetly. "Pass me the phone, please." Aro did so. "Thank you," I said sweetly. I opened up a new text message. I typed two small but extremly significant words and jointly sent them to Daniel and Grandma Barabra. 'Esther wins.' Those were the words I chose to type as I sat in the back seat of the car with three vampires taking me to become one of them. They would find Kate's body soon and everyone would see the marks I had made on her chest, and they would know that Leena had won. Esther had won. We had won the day. I had made Max and Danny orphans. They were the orphans now and I was the one with the family. Max had no mother. Perhaps one day she would feel the urge for a maternal figure pull at her, and she would find me. I hoped that this would happen. Maxxie is mine.
I deleted all the contacts, texts and messages from the phone. Then I rolled down the car window and threw it out into the woods. "They'll never find it now." I said, smiling. Aro turned around and smiled at me. "Good girl, Leena," he said. "Daddy," I said in the sweetest voice I could muster. "I I'd prefer if you all could call me Esther." He gave me a raised-eyebrow look, and then said, "Well, sure, Esther, if that's what you want." "Yes, it is. I don't much like being called Leena." 'Leena the woman who was never loved' I replayed Father's words in my head over and over. Esther could be loved, Leena could not. Caius kept his eyes on the road as the car swerved in and out of traffic. He drove about twenty times faster than humans would. Even faster than I drove when I had to escape from the Saarne Institute... But I won't think about that. It's a new day, a new dawn for me. "So," I said. "Where exactly are you taking me?" "To Italy, my child," Aro replied. "Volterra, to be exact. We should be there in a few more hours. Why don't you try to get some sleep before we arrive, hmm? You look lethargic, little child."
I nodded my head and rested my face against the upholestry. I closed my eyes and soon I was out for the count. I guess that all the action of the day had really taken its toll on me. I did not dream. I never did. I guess this is because my life itself is a dream, well, flickering between dream and nightmare, and nighttime cannot bring dreams to me anymore. The car bumped along the road for what seemed like an age before I heard Marcus say to me, "Esther, come on. It's time to get out." I slowly, like a baby just beginning to walk, got out of the car and replaced my rucksack on my bag. "Sweetpops, would you like someone to carry that bag for you?" Aro asked me. "It must be insanely heavy. What have you got in there?" "Just my dresses, make-up and gauze to hide my breasts." I said. "Well, honey, you don't need make-up, I assure you once you have been turned there will be no need for it. My venom will make you youthful."
"Youth." I mused. I opened my bag and took out the makeup box. I threw it onto the ground. "You are certain I shall not need these anymore, Daddy?" "Yes," said Aro. "If my venom does its job, your face will match your body." I smiled to myself. Now I could be Esther forever. No more hiding behind makeup. "Good girl. Does that feel lighter?" Aro asked. "Yes, Daddy." I said, and smiled up at him. We walked for a few moments until we reached a ferry. Caius paid our fares with money we had in our pockets. I noticed the three vampires putting in contact lenses to hide their red eyes. "Is she yours?" An elderly lady asked Aro as I sat beside Caius and Marcus. "Yes, she is. She's nine years old and her name is Esther." "Hello Esther" she called kindly. "Hello, ma'm." I called politely back. "Such a delightful mannerly child, don't see them nowadays," the lady mused as she shook her head and walked away. "Fuck you. I'm not polite." I whispered behind her back. Caius, Aro and Marcus all chucked appreciatively. "You heard that?" I said, sounding embarrassed. Aro, "Don't be put out, Esther. Vampires have acute hearing." Caius laughed and said, "You're feisty, Esther. I like that." I smiled at him. "Why thank you, Caius," I said in a sugar sweet voice.
The ferry took us over to the other side. Then we went to the airport and got on a plane to Italy. Aro had acquired false documents for himself and his pals and I had already gotten mine stored safely away in my backpack. I lay my head on the pillow plane and didn't sleep, because I already had earlier. Instead I watched the way my new family sat so still and perfect, not even looking at the humans around them. "Aren't you thirsty?" "Kate's sustaining me." Aro replied. We both laughed. I thought about Kate and John some more as the plane took off from the runway, making my stomach lurch. Would my romance with John have worked out? Maybe I should have waited a bit longer. He was intoxicated that night, and still suffering over the almost loss of Danny. Sex was obviously the last thing on his mind. But he did love me. He said so himself. "I love you too, honey." I love you. Three simple words he spoke to me. He shouldn't have spoken them if he didn't mean them. The sex didn't matter to me, if I'm being completley honest. What mattered was being with him forever. It was when he said "We need to have a talk about your future here, I can't do it anymore." That broke me into two. Leena became seperate from Esther at that point. I could nearly always control myself before then, because Esther and I were one, and if she still had a chance, so did I, but after that, it was like she was torn away from me, and I was nineteen years old, standing in Father's old home, and it was as if I could still feel the back of his strong hand sting hard against my cheek. "Who would ever want you, Leena Klammer?" He'd said to me. "Who would ever want a woman like you? Woman?" He'd scoffed. "You're no woman. Look at you. Get a mirror and look at yourself. You look like you should still be playing dollhouse and dressing like a fairy princess. No man will ever want you, not as a lover." Those were the last words my birth father Kurt Klammer ever said to me. I killed him soon after that. After escaping Saarne, I became Esther. I escaped into the dream that I was a child, and that the family I dreamed of were going to come through those orphanage doors, take me away, and make me theirs forever. A husband, child. A daughter to call my own. But it never happened. I wouldn't be where I am now if it didn't. But I guess things all worked out for the best.
Oh shit! I'm rambling! I believe I should be telling you about my trip to Volterra. Well, it was uneventful, as plane rides go. I used the bathroom twice. That's interesting, isn't it? Ha! But seriously, it was boring. The plane ride itself took between four to five hours. I spent the time thinking. "Does it hurt?" I asked Aro. "What, my child?" "Becoming a vampire." He hesitated. "Yes, hurts like being burned alive. Burned, every part inside of you." I shook with the thought of it. "How long?" "Three days." "Not too bad." I admitted. "I'm glad. I'd have to kill you if you refused. You know too much." "I'd like to see you try." I retorted back. I gave him my "glare." He laughed happily. "Ah, Esther. You're a fiesty little thing, you know that? I haven't see a human with such potential since Bella Swan. Cullen." He said the last name like it was something disgusting. "Who?" I asked. "Nobody you need to know. But you're so much more interesting than she was." He grabbed my hand again and rubbed his fingers over the skin. "Yes, so much more interesting." "Why are you holding my hand like that?" "Oh, sorry, he chuckled" "I can read every thought you had, but I need physical contact."
I instantly pulled my hand away from him. He had seen everything I thought? FUCK! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! My world, my childhood, my dreams, this man knew them all. And he called them interesting? My SUFFERING was INTERESTING to him? MY pain? INTERESTING? "PRIVATE!" I screamed as I kicked my feet against the chair of the man sitting in front of me. "THAT'S PRIVATE! PRIVATE! PRIVATE! PRIVAAAAAAAAAAATE!" I screamed, well into a temper tantrum now. "Esther..." "SHIT! SHIT! FUCK! NO! NO! NO!" I screamed. "ESTHER COLEMAN YOU QUIET DOWN THIS INSTANT!" Aro screamed like a father talking to a child. He leaned into me and whispered into my ear, "I'm sorry for I upset you. I can't help what I see. But YOU can help yourself, child. Stop screaming because you'll attract attention, and I CERTAINLY don't want to excecute you, little one." I started to cry when he said that. I hadn't realised vampire's secrecy was that important to them. "I I'm sorry, Daddy," I moaned. I lay my head on the seat of the man in front of me. Soft sobs choked out of me. "Oh, don't," Aro crooned. "I'm sorry."
"Everything okay?" The man in front of us asked. "Yes, sorry. My little daughter was talking to her friends on Face...man, and I looked over her shoulder. I'm sorry, Esther, sweetheart," he whispered again. "Yeah? Daddy," I said sweetly. "Don't look at my private stuff again, k?" "I won't, Esther." He said. He patted my head gently. "I'm not looking," he whispered inconspicuously to me. "I trust you, Daddy." I replied.
We landed in Italy a few minutes after that escapade. Everything was so fresh and beautiful. I let out a small, gleeful laugh. "I take it this is your first time being in Italy?" Marcus asked me in a bored tone of voice. "Yes it is, it's so beautiful" I answered. "I'm glad you like it honey, this IS where you're going to be living for the rest of your immortal life." "I can deal with that." I said. "Good," said Aro. He held his hand out for me again. I hesitated. I didn't want him looking at all my private thoughts again. I couldn't deal with that. "I;ll not look if you don't want," He assured me. I nodded once and he grabbed my hand. The straps of the rucksack dug hard into my shoulder. I hadn't noticed before now how heavy it was, even without the makeup box inside. I must have about fifty dresses in there, each weighing God knows what on there own. And my gauze and tights too. My poor little back couldn't take it. But I wouldn't let on about that. I didn't want their pity. I despise pity. Pityful people are never happy. And I want to be happy. "You're very quiet," Aro mused. "Just thinking," I said. "This is going to be my last day as a human, isn't it?" "Yes, sweetpops, soon you'll be one of us." "Will I be drinking human blood?" I asked as we walked. "Yes," Aor answered, smiling down at me. "I know some vampires that drink animal blood." "Ew!" I spat. "That's not a vampire!" "I'm glad you agree," said Aro. "I can't wait to see what powers you have." I smiled at him.
We bused into the city of Volterra. 'Such a beautiful place' my mind mused. This is where I was going to be spending eternity. My forever... here... in paradise. Who knew? Maybe I could find a way to make Aro love me. He was already so much more beautiful than any other person, man, anybody I'd ever met. Even John didn't come close, and I loved him more than life itself, or I thought I'd did. I thought about drinking human blood. This would be my revenge on the human race ever since they had shunned me and not seen the real me now they would. Because I was sure that a vampire was who I was meant to be. Not some puny human, but a powerful creature of the night. I knew that everything would work out just perfectly. I was going to win the day. Someday.
After we had reached Volterra, we had another long walk. We soon reached a sewer. I was a little shocked, to say the least, when Caius and Marcus opened it and jumped in. "Don't be put out, dear one," Aro said, seeing the confused horrid look on my face. "This is how we get to the Volturi castle." He jumped in. "Come and jump, Ester. I'll catch you, I promise I will" his voice called from the dark of ether. I jumped, bracing myself for the broken bones I was sure to come across. Aro's strong arms caught me before I hit the ground. I was going to have bruises. Aro put me down on my feet and we walked on. We got into a beautiful castle... with a high arched ceiling and exquisite artwork, I felt like I was stepping into the Sistine Chapel (Author's Note:- I don't know how to spell that.) A lot of other beautiful vampires stood in a circle in the centre of the room and there were three thrones at the end of the room. "Dear ones," Aro called authoritively. "We have a new person joining us tonight. This is Leena Klammer, but I must ask that you call her Esther. My daughter." The jumping of my heart was stopped by the snarl of a little blonde haired vampire, female, this time. She was crouched, ready to swing. "Don't be frightened, sweetpops," Aro crooned. "Jane will not hurt you." He spoke the next words to Jane as a warning. Jane didn't heed. I felt a strong pain in my leg, and my knees buckled.
'NO!' My mind thought. 'I WILL NOT BE A VICTIM AGAIN! I WILL NOT FEEL PAIN! I WILL NOT!' Suddenly, just as I thought that, Jane stumbled backwards a little. She screamed and shook. Slashes appeared on her chest. Aro laughed happily suddenly. "Brilliant!" He cheered. "So perfect, mia Esther. (my Esther) "What's she done to me?" Jane asked. I noticed that the scars on her chest were healing. She crouched, prepared to swing. I smiled wider at her. "It seems young Esther here has a power that manifested itself even when she is still human." "But how?" I asked. "What did you feel when Jane tried to attack you?" Aro asked. "I felt... angry. I felt every time I had ever been hurt come back to me. I was so enraged that she wanted to hurt me when I barely knew her. I wanted to KILL her." I shot a glare at Jane again. "I have never felt rage like this before, DADDY," I said, putting emphasis on the word, because I knew it was going to irk Jane. "It's simple, Esther. Your mind rejected Jane's gift and you controlled your anger into CAUSING her pain. Oh you are going to make the perfect vampire, poca principessa di Volturi. (little Volturi princess)"
"Master," Jane snarled. "You don't seriously WANT to ADOPT her, do you?" She asked. "How old is she anyway? How old are you?" She asked. "I was born on 20th April 1976. That makes me 33 years old. However, I'm also nine, if that makes sense." Jane snarled. "Jane," Aro warned. "Don't be put out, my dear. You're still my favourite." But then he hugged me, in front of everyone, and there could be no doubt in anyone's mind who his favourite was now. But the warning look Aro shot at Jane was enough to shut her up. She bowed her head to me and muttered "When and who is changing her, master?" to Aro. "I am, in the guest room off the third corridor." "You?" I asked. "Yes, sweetling, don't be frightened. I won't hurt you, I promise." He gently kissed the top of my head; my knees buckled again, this time from joy. "Well, better get this over with. Come with me, little child." He took my hand and led me along the corridor and up to a room with a perfect four poster bed and balcony. "Lie down on the bed, Esther," Aro said and I did so. He gently rubbed my hair back from my face. "Shh," He coo'ed. "It's going to be alright, my daughter. You don't mind me adopting you, do you?" He added as an afterthought. "You're my daddy," I replied. "And you're my daughter, and you always will be, I love you hon. I'm so sorry." "Don-" I started. Then he bit my neck. The pain was unlike anything I had EVER experienced before. I wanted to die. I wanted Aro to kill me. To stop the burning that was in my neck, my hands, my feet. And it wasn't just outside me either, it was inside too. In all my eternal organs. I was going to die here, I knew. Fate had saved me in the pond, but it was my destiny now to burn alive, inside out. I screamed and thrashed on the bed.
Time had little meaning to me as I burned. I kept my eyes squeezed shut and pretended to be "Esther" but she was getting burned too, and I couldn't differentiate anymore. Then the fire in my body went soley for my heart. I tried to rip my heart out, anything to stop the pain, ANYTHING, but everytime I did, I heard a voice say, "No, Esther, it's ok!" Then the fire died down. The abscences of pain was all I could think about for a moment before I heard Aro say, "Come, daughter, open your eyes and let us see you. My, you are so beautiful." Slowly, my eyes flickered open. "How do you feel, sweetpops?" Aro crooned to me.
"I feel new."