Vivian looked at the brunette woman who clung to Leonard like it was the most natural thing to do. She stood at the sideline as if she no longer existed, her eyes taking in the scene while Leonard smiled at the woman. Once the woman moved away, she spoke to him,
"I haven't seen you in a long time. How have you been?" she asked, her stature as much as Vivian.
"I have been well, Eleanor. How have you been doing? I didn't know you moved back here," he smiled down.
The woman whom Leonard had referred to as Eleanor pouted her lips, "Of course, you didn't! You even forgot about me and you didn't remember to visit me once you came back from the Rune's mansion," Vivian who stood afar from them felt like she had suddenly come to an outsider home where she knew no one here.
Her heart clenched and squeezed with the way Leonard treated the other woman. She wouldn't have thought about it if he were like that with everyone but Leonard rarely showed his emotions, much less shared them with another. His smiles were always reserved and with weeks and months that they had gotten closer, there were things that Vivian had come to notice and learned about him.. As bold as his words were, he kept his thoughts to himself unless someone provoked him. Not wanting to jump to conclusions, she held back her thoughts before it would turn to a box full of doubts.
"You forgot your promise, didn't you," at the vampiress' words, Leonard laughed.
"That was years ago, El. Didn't you find a man yet? It was a childish joke," this piqued Vivian's curiosity.
"I know that," Eleanor rolled her eyes, "As if I would wait for a man who has no time for me," Mrs Henz laughed along with the others.
Mrs Henz then said, "You should cut him some slack. It is hard to think that both of you haven't gotten together with the way you were when you were children. Isn't it dear," she asked her husband, "Both of you should give it a thought."
Vivian stared at Mrs Henz who had suggested for both Leonard and Eleanor to get together, hinting for them to get married. Taking a closer look at the vampiress she wondered if she was a close relative or a daughter's friend as she seemed completely at ease around them. Not to forget that she had received a warm smile from Leonard. If she were a relative, it wouldn't be uncommon for the pureblooded vampires to marry as they preferred to keep their bloodline clean. Still unknown of the woman who had waltzed herself into the mansion and taking Leo's attention she walked to where they were like she was unaffected.
It seemed like Eleanor wanted to say something but Leonard spoke before that, "When we are children we tell a lot of things to each, auntie. We shouldn't consider what was spoke or done when we were young but move with the current," he smiled, his words not only pushing away the possibility of a relationship with Eleanor but also hinting the brawl he had with Christopher years ago.
"Leo is right. We shouldn't hold on to children's words. Oh my, I didn't know we had a guest. A human," the brunette woman commented looking at Vivian. Both the woman skimmed and scanned each other.
"Eleanor, meet Ms Vivian, she's an acquaintance of Leonard," Mrs Henz introduced her and then she spoke to Vivian, "Ms Vivian, this is my daughter Eleanor."
"Good afternoon. Your name sounds very familiar," the vampiress said as she recollected why it was so until it dawned at her, "Are you the one who passed the first council exam?" this received all attention towards Vivian.
"Yes, that would be me," Vivian plastered a smile on her face.
Mr Henz, who had been least bothered with the chatter talk after playing the game of cards, his eyebrows rose in question, "Council exam?"
"You don't know about the guest Leo brought home?" asked Eleanor before continuing to speak, "Ms Vivian earned one-day fame because of clearing the exam that was set for the written council examination, I wanted to congratulate you on that," she went to shake Vivian's hand, the shake being a little more than firm as she was a vampiress.
"That's wonderful news," though Mrs Henz expressed her words to be full of enthusiasm, the expression on her face didn't completely match with what she was saying.
Mr Henz instead didn't hide his distaste by throwing the paper he previously held in his hand on the table, "That's rubbish. What's wrong with the council letting humans and now human females to take part in something they will not excel or are not going to be good at. Where's the law of placing work in capable hands?" It was quite evident that Mr Henz opposed the idea of women working in the council. With his words which were previously spoken, she could tell that he was the kind of man and like many others who believed that a human female was suited to only cook and bed the man she was married to.
"Pardon me Mr Henz but I am sure the council has framed the questions and is holding the exams only to bring the best candidates out."
"You might come from a reputed family, dear but the council is no place for a little girl yourself," Vivian bit her tongue at his discouraging words, waiting for him to finish, "As much influence you add but out of the exam, and when I say this I speak behalf of everyone, that we would prefer a person who can handle the job."
"I wouldn't say I have the strength like the vampires but I can prove it to you in the future that a human can handle the work fine. And time will answer your doubts," Vivian replied to see him nod.
"The second is tougher than the first. Don't mind me, but I would rather see you fail and not be injured. There are some things only a man can handle and isn't something a woman has to do. Don't you think so, Leonard?" at Mr Henz' question, Leonard hummed.
Leonard initially had wanted the conversation to pass, not wanting to get into unnecessary light arguments which were of no use. Until and unless it was going to harm him or Vivian, he would let it slide, "Vivian has an exceptional potential compared to other humans or women. It would be a terrible waste for her to not try out the exams. I believe she has every quality a councillor would possess or needs to possess. She still has another exam to clear before we know she will join the council for sure."
"It appears that your views are very much like your father's, Leonard. But see what happened when a person deviates from the usual traditions."
"If a person has the ability to excel in a job one should not leave it for the name of society. What a shame it would be to not believe. Take in for Eleanor," Leonard looked at his second cousin who had been listening to their conversation, "No offence but she dropped her education when she could have achieved more than what she is now. She used to have such wonderful ability in the problem-solving techniques," the vampiress smiled unsurely if to take it as praise or an insult.
"Eleanor preferred not to continue," Mrs Henz pipped in.
"Of course, that was her choice. I am sure you wouldn't say the same if she were in this girl's position," Mr Henz stood up from his seat and then made his way towards an empty corridor before he disappeared around the corner of it. Leaving the conversation hanging, Vivian stood awkwardly not knowing if it was okay to move her head or sight.
To diffuse the situation, Eleanor came to stand next to Vivian, "I think it's wonderful that you were able to crack the first exam. I hope you clear the next one with ease," the vampiress smiled at her.
"Thank you, Ms Eleanor," thanked Vivian with a bow to see Eleanor shake her head.
"Just Eleanor is fine. Did anyone tour you around yet?" the vampiress asked and offering her, "We have a beautiful glass room than what Carmichael's mansion has."