Orleans, France. 1853
Annabelle was rushing to a run-down house on the outskirts of Orleans, two babies in tow--a boy and a girl.
She knocked on the door of the hovel deliberately--two long knocks, a short one, and then another long one.
After a moment, the door opened to a hooded figure, who, seeing her, beckoned for her to come inside. She stepped in, and once she was beyond the threshold, he closed the door and removed his hood.
His face was grotesque--the man's lips were twisted out of shape, his eyelids were sewn shut, and scars ran across his long, rectangular face. His nose was half lopped off, and the skin where part of his nose was gone was a raw, pale pink that stood out against the dirty tan of the rest of his face. Something about him was... Inhuman.
However, Annabelle was relieved to see him instead of frightened. She spoke words that were in a strange tongue, neither French, English, or any of the human languages. It was older than those--a language older than humans themselves. The words radiated power, but you could tell that they were terrible, deforming. However, it was the only language that the man would make deals in, since its words were binding.
"Please, sire... The boy... Can you..?"
She left the question hanging. Annabelle knew he could, but he would demand a price to do the deed.
But the man's eyes were on the baby girl. She was about a year old, but she wasn't crying at the sight of him. Instead, she looked at him curiously.
He sounded disgusted. "She is the Angel's child... She will grow up to hate our kind. You dare bring her here?
"I couldn't leave her alone. Angel child she may be, she is my daughter."
"Still, you should not have brought her here. Her mere aura diminishes my power."
"Can you still do it?"
"You know the consequences? He will no longer be human. And the price..."
"I am ready to do whatever it takes."
"Very well," he said, and made an expression. It may have been an attempted smile, but on his face, it simply looked like an expression of pain.
Annabelle stepped forward, and her expression was calm as the man's knife slit her throat and droplets of her blood fell to the floor.