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Becoming Cinderella.

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"""This isn't a storybook where she'll end up with the Prince Charming."" ""This is real life and in real life she is nothing but a maid, who will continue to scrub the floors for the rest of her life."" The words of Mrs Carolyn Wright resonated in Caelia's ears as she eavesdropped from the hallway, tears blurring her vision. Caelia Holland is a maid at the Wrights residence. One night, she attends the annual magical masquerade ball in place of someone else and she steals the heart of Damon Wright, Vampire Lord of the town and in an elaborate ceremony which she is completely unaware of, she becomes something she had no idea was even possible, his bride. Right before midnight, she runs away after finding out Damon's true nature and he desperately tries to find her. He has no idea that she is the lowly maid who works for his parents but she knew who he was. And that one night of passion and magic makes Damon Wright obsessed with the girl who is now to be his bride and has rightfully dubbed 'Cinderella'. Caelia struggles with the feelings she has for Damon, despite knowing his true nature and Damon begins the search for his bride, to complete the ceremony. But as his search turns dangerous and futile, he begins to see that there's more to Caelia than meets the eye."

Chapter 1 - New Beginnings

She was breathing heavily. Not from the insane heat or fatigue, not from lack of physical capability. From fear. Genuine fear. She stood at the top of the hill in the cool midnight air, wondering if coming back to Staunton was a good idea.Even if it wasn't a good idea, she had no choice. It was all she could do to save her mother from the accumulating debts. She had always thought she would make enough money for her mother to abandon her job.But life didn't always hand out presents and Caelia had been handed the worst gift of all for Christmas. The joy of being a maid for the wealthy ex-Mayor of Staunton. Mr William Wright. A job that her mother had been almost more than half of her life, Caelia never thought that she would be subjected to the same fate.Caelia Morgan Holland was the only daughter of Lourdes Holland. Her mother was the only parent she knew and she had. She ran away from her abusive father when Caelia was four. She claimed she decided it was time to leave when Caelia's father mistakenly pushed his four year old daughter down the stairs in a drunken stupor.Leaving Caelia with a permanent mark on her forehead that she was always desperately trying to hide with her bangs. Ever since then her uneducated immigrant mother had to strive to make a living. She had been a maid in the Wrights household for almost half of her life and Caelia had been stupid to think going to college and getting a job would help her get her mother out of her debts with the Wrights after her aunt suffered from a debilitating illness.But no, her mother had borrowed money for Caelia's schooling from the Wrights and she was obligated to pay by working for free. That was when Caelia decided that she wanted to step in, her job as an editor made her earn little and she felt indebted to her mother. So she volunteered to work as a maid too. To pay off her mother's debt quicker. Mrs Carolyn Wright practically jumped at the idea.And Caelia had to become a maid in the Wrights household, which also meant that she would have to be living with them.She was scared. Scared and angry. She had broken her own promise, the very promise she swore to keep.The promise of vowing that she would pay off her mother's debts to the Wrights and they could buy a beautiful house and live a normal life. With the amount of money that her mother owed the family, Caelia knew it wasn't going to be possible, at least not till she worked for a few more years.The wind gently brushed her midnight black hair and grazed her face, almost soothingly. She began walking, taking one ragged breath after another, her shaking legs putting on a strong facade. She approached the corner at the bottom of the hill and slowed her pace, peering round a hedge just enough to see a man.Even in the dark, he had the kind of face that stopped people in their tracks. Caelia guessed he must have gotten used to that, the sudden pause in a person's natural expression when they looked his way followed by overcompensating with a nonchalant gaze and a weak smile.He walked towards her and Caelia watched him carefully.He had tousled dark brown hair, which was thick and lustrous. His eyes were a mesmerising deep ocean blue, flecks of silvery light performed ballets throughout. His face was strong and defined, as if his features were molded from granite. He had dark eye brows, which sloped downwards. Caelia noticed his lips, perfect for kissing.Caelia hastily looked away, suddenly aware that she was staring too much but it was too late, the stranger had noticed her and he was already too close. She took a few steps back."Are you from around here?"He asked and she took a step back."Yes." She said as she looked around suddenly noticing how dark it was. Staunton wasn't exactly a safe town. People went missing in the dead of the night and there were usually a lot of animal attacks. She had gone out just because she wanted to clear her head but now she wondered if it was a smart idea."I'm sorry if I startled you. Are you okay? It's pretty late."The man said as he looked up at the sky, he was wearing casual clothes, lightly coloured pants and a grey sweater."I'm fine. I take long walks here all the time."Caelia said as she shrugged, she started her descent down the hill, she had to be up early to go to the Wrights residence."Really? That's interesting.""You're not from around here are you?" Caelia asked as she started walking back down the hill. It was much easier than her going up the hill."I am. But I travel a lot. I actually stay in New York. I'm only home for business.""And Christmas?"She asked as she raised her eyebrows. The man shrugged."I guess you can say that. Although Christmas at home can be a little extra so I like spending it alone."Caelia loved Christmas, it was the only time she got to spend time with her mother and her aunt. Even though it was always small, warm and cozy, she always looked forward to it."I love small intimate Christmases too."She answered after a long pause, gazing at the midnight black sky dotted with a thousand stars, with the whole city of Staunton down below."Never thought I'd be back here..." The man murmured."Why? Too boring?" Caelia retorted and he shrugged."No, far from that...""Staunton is actually a very peaceful place for me to stay. I've just never imagined coming back and planning to stay for so long...""Well, things never go as planned. I learnt that the hard way."Caelia murmured suddenly wondering why she was talking to the beautiful stranger when she was supposed to be preparing for her first day as a maid in the Wrights residence.The man studied her. She was a rare beauty. The kind who looked so ordinary and yet her beauty was simple stunning. She had an innocent yet seductive face. Her hair, a mass of wavy midnight black hair that fell to her back like an obsidian waterfall.Alluringly, she would blink her eyes from time to time, allowing her eyelashes to flutter like the wings of a butterfly beneath her bangs, it was almost hypnotising. Her eyes were simply spellbinding. Her eyes were a beautiful hazel with green flecks, large and almond shaped."Care to tell me what made you think that way?"He asked curiously and Caelia shrugged."I'm not even sure I should be talking to a stranger."He raised his hands in mock surrender."You have nothing to worry about. I'm a perfect stranger.""Hmm." Caelia said as she shrugged."Well, does the stranger have a name?"The man grinned as he moved an inch closer to Caelia, closing the gap between them."Damon. My name is Damon. And you are?""Caelia."She replied and she saw that he frowned a little bit. It was normally how people acted when they heard her name. It took a few times for them to pronounce it before most of them decided that they liked the sound of the name."That's a very unusual and very pretty name.""Thank you."She replied with a small blush creeping on her cheeks."You're welcome.""So Caelia, want to walk a little more with me?"Caelia shrugged as she checked the time, it was late. Her aunt would be expecting her and she had work the next day."I'm sorry Damon. I have to go."Damon quickly masked his disappointment with a smile."Do I at least get your number?"He asked hopefully and Caelia shook her head. She had too much on her plate to add a relationship into the mix.And since she was going to be working overtime, Caelia knew it would be hard for her to have a social life and being a maid wasn't exactly an impressive job."Maybe another time.""If we ever meet again..."She added as she started her descent down the hill."You don't think we will?"Damon asked with a smirk as he watched Caelia's retreating figure."I don't believe in fate.""Well, I do."Damon called out and she turned to look at him one last time with a smile before walking away............ "Do you usually let go of prey so easily?"Chris murmured as he came out of the shadows. Damon looked at him and sighed. "Well... I'm not particularly hungry."He didn't tell Chris that he had not tasted human blood from the veins in at least a year. He didn't need to know that, he would never understand."Well, hearing you talk has worked up my appetite. I'm gonna go have myself a little meal. She looks delicious enough."Damon held Chris's wrist, stopping him before he went any further. "Leave her."He said firmly. Chris looked at him, his head tilted slightly. "Why? She's new in town, nobody would notice, nobody would miss her. They'd think it's another animal attack."Damon looked Chris straught in the eye. He didn't like to use his powers, or exert his dominance. But this time, he felt a strong urge to. "I command you." "She's mine."

Chapter 2 - The Wrights Residence

Caelia stepped from the black car, gaping at the large mansion that set beyond the sidewalk, towering over her as if attempting to intimidate her, it was the Wrights residence.The cream coating of the paint shined as the sun beat down on it, causing Caelia to squint. Uniquely twisted fencing kept the house enclosed, neatly trimmed hedges surrounded the house. The roof was peaked, slanting down at an angle. The windows had royal purple curtains hanging on the other side of them, drawn so that the sunlight could stream through.As she stepped onto the sidewalk her luggage in her hand, Caelia noticed a marble fountain sitting towards the right side of the lawn. An angel holding a flower was perched on top, looking up towards the sky. Water spurted from its other hand, which lay gently out in front of it, as if waiting for someone to take it in return. The water fell gently towards the crystal blue pool beneath it, causing ripples to form and wave out until they were no more.

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