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Katherine sat up in her coffin and looked around, she saw that Darcy was sleeping on the large bed that was in the room.
“What’s wrong?” He asked moving to her side in an instant.
“Don’t tell me that, I know better. I can feel it,” he said moving to hold her trembling hand.
“I have been having nightmares, I hate feeling so helpless and knowing that he is gone. Nickolas has not had any control over me in centuries.”
“You said that you’ve been free of him for a long time. Tell me how long?” He asked soothingly.
“Maybe later, I want the entire family assembled. Bianca died because she knew of my past and the past that Nickolas had promised me. She knew of what I had gone through.”
“Not entirely, she did not finish reading it before she had made her choice.”
“Bring the others, and I will come and meet you in the great room, its time the family knew of my past and that past was with Nickolas.”
“All right,” Darcy said, he kissed her cheek and stood and walked from the room. Katherine slowly made her way to her feet and looked around the room, placed above the large bed was a painting; the couple in the painting was happy, smiles on their faces. She walked up and touched the edge of the painting and sighed.
“Why did you change?” She whispered. She knew that there were similar pictures around the house and was shocked none had approached her about them. She had a portrait made of her with Nickolas and Angelina, and as her family grew after Nickolas had left she always had another portrait added. Katherine pulled her long red robe over her nightdress and walked from the room, her family had to know what was going on and why even now that Nickolas was gone, she seemed more depressed. She had lost her friend, the man that had promised her the world and for a short time had taken that world and all it had to offer. She walked down the long hallway toward the winding staircase; she looked down over the balcony to see her children assembling. She moved down the stairs toward the assembled group, deep within her she dreaded having to tell them that at one time she was as evil as Nickolas was now, and once danced in the death and destruction that he was once wreaking. How could she expect them to understand that she was now good and she was fighting the evil that she once was?

Darcy looked up at her as she slowly walked toward the large chair that sat against the wall in the great room. Katherine sat down and looked at everyone that had been assembled.
“What is it you wanted to speak to us about Mistress?” Angelina asked, she looked into Katherine’s eyes, for the first time in nearly three hundred years she saw fear behind Katherine’s dark eyes.
“There are a great many things we must discuss, and we have three hundred years to learn about my past, the past that I’ve never shared with any of you. The past that happened before Angelina joined my brood, being my first child.”
“Who was with you before?”
“Martin and I were with Mistress Katherine, along with another that was called Alexander.”
“I knew nothing of Alexander, was he before any of you?” Angelina asked.
“He was Nickolas’s boy, a young man changed because of Nickolas’s anger the first time I refused to be his wife. But let’s start somewhere else. Let’s start where I met Nickolas, the very first time I lay eyes on the man that changed everything that I was.”
“We know some of your time with Nickolas.”
“Not all of it, and it’s time that the entire family understands that at one time I held the same evil that Nickolas held so dear, that I killed just like Nickolas without a care in the world, without the knowledge that I was the one that was to save the world I was trying to destroy,” Katherine sighed and sat down in the chair and leaned back, her world could be seen crumbling right now, she knew that much of what she did was wrong and until she was three hundred years old she never understood that. Now it was time to make her brood understand the person she was and the person she used to be.