Beth's Diary -Part Thirteen
October 10, 2006
Sometimes life takes you places or on journeys you can’t imagine and the best things happen, even from something that seems like the worst possible thing. That’s the kind of week I’ve had, let me tell you!
Hm, first off I have found a new place to live, a much nicer place. No more paper-thin walls with the neighbors fighting 24-7 or the creepy guy down the hall watching everyone come and go. My new place is fantastic and I love it!
I’m on the second floor of a new building that looks old – vintage actually. It is light and airy, with glass panels in some of the walls that let all kinds of light in and a wonderful little balcony off of my bedroom. I move in two weeks and I can’t wait, it’s going to be such a pleasure living there. It’s sort of centrally located so I’m not too far from anything.
The weirdest thing about this week is meeting this new guy – Josh. Joshua Lindsay that is; he is an Assistant District Attorney and very handsome and nice. How I met him though was anything but nice and enchanting, let me tell you. But we had a great first date and another one planned for next weekend, so things look promising.
I spent last weekend down in San Diego with Robbi and Kevin and baby Brianna, who I might say is not so much a baby anymore. At a year and a half or so she is growing like a reed and a walking and talking force of destruction! Robbi and I swear that she channels Lani and if there is any truth in that at all, Robbi and Kevin are in for a rough ride. My godchild is fearless and loves to jump and bounce on whatever surface is handy. She would perform daring feats of danger constantly if not watched carefully. She is the perfect combination of Robbi and Kevin in looks though, so she is simply gorgeous; Kevin’s cornflower blue eyes and Robbi’s dimpled chin and soft brown hair. She will definitely be a heartbreaker and Kevin will have his hands full beating off the young pups who will be hanging around. He only groans when I tease him about it.
I hear from Lani frequently, by e-mail mostly although we do manage to chat by phone occasionally too. I miss her so much but she loves Tokyo. She came home briefly after Bri was born, for a week and we made the most of the time together. She has invited me to Tokyo numerous times but getting away from work is hard, when you’re a reporter always fighting the pack for the best stories that is. If I had a by-line or something it might be different! So, I often wonder, what does the future hold for me where my job is concerned? The crystal ball isn’t revealing much, that’s for sure!
Mick rode home from Josef’s right before dawn, savoring the quiet of the streets at 4 a.m. Well, as quiet as LA ever got that is. The top was down in the Benz as Mick cruised down the Mulholland and listened to Ella Fitzgerald on the CD player. Mick hummed along with Night and Day, occasionally singing along as well.
Damn that woman could sing!
It had been the consummate boy’s night at Josef’s place, poker, cigars, blood, and the boys; it didn’t get much better than that Mick thought. It took Mick back to when he and Josef first forged their friendship, after Josef had rescued him from Coraline all those years ago.
Mick admitted that he and Josef actually coming to like one another was totally unlikely and yet they managed to do so. Still it had been rocky at first and possibly only fortune itself had kept Mick’s head attached to his shoulders. Funny thing though about Josef, he wouldn’t separate the two as long as Mick asked for it; pleaded for it in fact. No, it was only after all that happened that he would have considered it. He had told Cora and Mick both that night that he would help Mick get his head screwed on straight and he did just that.
Mick sat huddled up in the backseat corner of Josef’s Lincoln Continental, not sure what to think about this guy who had helped him escape Coraline’s house. He could still hear her piercing screams ripping through the night as they pulled away from the party house. It was only a small solace; he was still with another vampire and one not only did he not know but wasn’t sure he could trust. However, it was done…
Did he really want to die? Well, yes and no. He wasn’t ready to leave this earth, but he didn’t really want to live like this either; sucking people’s blood and killing innocent victims just to get that blood. Coraline said that it was different for him – that he was above the humans now and they were only here to amuse and feed him as he wished. He didn’t believe that –would never accept that. He was one of them only a week ago and he wouldn’t ever forget that.
Mick was oblivious to the shrouded glances cast upon him by Josef as he piloted the Lincoln through the empty streets. “What the hell have you done, Josef” he asked himself? Better to have just separated this fool from his head than to rush in all hero-like and promise to help him get his head on straight! He slapped his hand against the steering wheel, causing the car to swerve for a moment and Mick to sit up in the backseat and look around him in fear.
So, he doesn’t really want to die. But he sure is messed up that’s for sure. Coraline really did a number on him. Poor bastard…
Josef knew that that was the reason he was helping Mick; Coraline and her games. Although he admitted that he hadn’t ever seen Cora fall so hard for someone before and that made him curious. Usually Cora just kept her boy toys until they were totally infatuated with her and then she threw them out; the game being over at that point. But this guy was apparently different and why was yet to be seen.
At Josef’s secluded house in the hills he pulled the car to a stop and cut the engine. “Well boyo, we’re home sweet home. Come on in!”
Mick climbed out of the car and stood staring at the mansion, transfixed. He suddenly felt scared to death and while he tried to take a step forward, he found his legs wouldn’t move.
Josef stood impatiently watching Mick and shook his head. “Come on, Mick. The sun’s going to be up soon and you don’t want to be out here when it does. It’s time to grab something to eat and hit the freezer. Come on…” he said, starting to walk towards the steps that lead up to the imposing front door.
Mick steeled himself and took a reluctant step forward, followed by another. He knew Josef was right; he didn’t want to be out here when the sun came up. The sun used to be one of his joys, the warmth seeping into his body. Now, each time he got close to a window it only burned; his eyes, his skin, whatever it touched. He loathed this part of his existence although Cora had told him that would get better and that he would eventually be able to go outside during the day. Mick was doubtful about that.
Inside the foyer a servant was waiting for them to enter. “Good evening Mr. Kostan. Welcome home. May I take your coat and your guests as well?”
“Yes, thank you Franklin. This is Mick St. John, a recent turn that is uh, struggling a bit. We’ll need a guest chamber prepared for him and also, can you send several of the girls into the study? Mr. St. John and I will be in there.”
“Certainly, Sir. At once!”
Coraline’s house was really nice but compared to this place it wasn’t much at all Mick thought as he followed Josef into the ‘study’, a huge room lined with leather sofas and chairs. An enormous desk occupied one corner of the room and Josef sat down behind it and motioned for Mick to sit across from him.
“Okay, a few ground rules here, Mick. I’m going to do my best to help you figure out what you want to do; I meant what I said at Coraline’s, I will help you kill yourself if you ultimately decide that is what you want. In the meantime though, you need to eat and rest so that you will figure it all out. Several of my girls will be in this room soon and you WILL treat them with respect and care. I take care of my ladies so you will behave!”
“What? I can’t – I can’t kill them Josef! I’ll die first!”
“It’s not always about killing Mick. I don’t expect nor will I tolerate you killing them just to satisfy your hunger. Obviously Cora hasn’t bothered to teach you that. You don’t have to kill them to feed Mick,” he finished quietly, watching Mick as he thought over what he had just said. It seemed to surprise him.
“How many times have you fed from a human, Mick?” Josef queried.
“Just once. I – I drained her and sh…she died. I can’t do that again!” Panic rose in his voice as he remembered what had happened two nights ago.
“You won’t kill them. You will gently bite their wrists and drink a bit from each one. Then you will seal the wounds with your tongue to soothe them. They like it Mick, I promise, if you do it right and trust me on this – I will make sure you can do it right.”
“I – I won’t have to kill them?” Mick asked, feeling a bit better. Why hadn’t Coraline told him this?
“If you do, you’ll die by my hand, and that is not only a promise but a threat. The key words are gently, politely and you will follow that rule!”
Mick nodded and just then several beautiful women entered the room, looking around them at Josef and Mick. “Hi Josef! Are you hungry?” a small blonde asked, smiling seductively at Josef.
“Ladies, this is Mick and he is hungry. He is also inexperienced at this so you will have to exhibit a bit of patience with him. But he will learn fast, I promise and he won’t hurt you either.” He pointed to one of the sofas and said, “Mick, have a seat. Juliette will sit on your lap so you will have easy access to her wrist.”
Mick nodded to the one called Juliette, a tall redhead and waited as she took a seat on his lap and got comfortable. He swallowed hard and picked up her wrist and suddenly the vamp begged to be let out. He tried to keep it at bay as he studied the delicate skin, the road map of blue veins standing out brightly on the pale cream color of her skin. He felt his fangs come down and he licked his lips, terribly nervous.
“Gently Mick. See this vein here?” Josef pointed to a pulsing vein close to the skin and Mick nodded. “Now, bite softly and just let the blood flow; that’s all you have to do.”
Mick did as directed and was quickly reward with a warm mouthful of the most delicious thing he had ever tasted. He had to fight his inner vamp to keep from clamping down hard and dragging huge mouthfuls of the delicious nectar in but he managed to stay in control. After several minutes Josef told him it was enough and he did as Josef had told him, to smooth his tongue over the twin wounds in Juliette’s wrist. She pulled her arm away from him and smiled even though she looked a bit woozy and he thanked her. What was surprising was that she was totally okay and it hadn’t been so bad.
Andrea, the small blonde was next and Mick gave a repeat performance, much more sure of himself this time. Andrea was even moaning a bit at the end but it didn’t sound like pain, it sounded like, well it couldn’t have been what it sounded like he decided.
After both girls were gone Josef nodded and said, “First lesson. You did okay Mick.”
“I didn’t know that we don’t, that they don’t have to die just for us to eat Josef,” he said simply, still amazed.
“There appears to be a lot you don’t know boyo, but you will. Are you feeling any better?”
“Yeah, a little. I’m tired though.”
Josef nodded and said, “It’s time to hit the freezer. Franklin will show you to the guest room.” Josef paused for a moment and then added, “Mick, it won’t always be this bad. It’s just a whole different life than you imagined, I know, but it ain’t so bad. In fact, some of us like it a lot! Now, get some rest and we’ll continue tomorrow!”
After that night he and Josef forged a bond between the two of them. He had learned so much from Josef and he had gone home to Coraline two weeks later. He had loved her, as screwed up and noxious as that love was, it was real. He had tried with her, but it was just not meant to be and he believed that completely. They were toxic together and even if he hadn’t killed her he would still have never gone back to her.
No, it was never meant to be…
Beth had drawn the short straw and had to cover a concert that night. It sucked since it was a human interest kind of piece and she hated those. To make it worse it was a band that she didn’t even like but she got her interview with them after the show as they came down from the audience high; they had talked to her in the dressing room.
The LA Palladium was huge and the parking lot bigger still. Very few cars remained in it as a guard escorted her to her car parked in the press area. She told him good night and sighed as she closed her door. She was dead tired and it was 1am; she couldn’t wait to get to bed! She yawned broadly and put the car into reverse, not looking behind her.
“OMG!” she yelled, stunned for a moment from the impact. She couldn’t believe she could have been so careless; she was shaking like a leaf and she saw the guard that had escorted her to the car running towards the two cars. She unbuckled her seat belt and climbed out of the car, hoping that she hadn’t hurt anyone.
A dark-haired man was climbing out of his Lexus, or trying to anyway. Beth had managed to back into the front fender on the driver’s side and it had not only buckled the fender but the driver’s door as well.
Of course it would be a freaking Lexus. He’ll probably sue me!
He finally crawled out the passenger side door and came storming around the car yelling like a banshee, “Christ, don’t you bother to look behind you before you back up lady?”
“I was tired, I’m sor – hey wait a damn minute, did you ever hear of lights when driving at night buddy?” she demanded, noticing that his lights weren’t on.
He looked down at his car and realized she was right; he had neglected to turn his headlights on. He looked at her and saw that along with being pissed she was also really cute. Maybe this a bit of serendipity?
“Yeah, you’re right; I forgot to turn them on. I’m tired too. Sorry, Miss…?”
“Turner, Beth Turner. I’m sorry too. Are you hurt?” she asked, taking him in. Nice looking, tall, classy suit. Not bad… She tried to smile at him.
“Josh Lindsey. Yes, I’m fine. How about you?”
Beth nodded and gave a rueful laugh. “Guess we can’t say the same for the cars, huh?”
Josh looked at both of them; his with the crumpled fender and hers with the busted tail light and dent. He laughed and agreed, “Guess not. Is yours drivable do you think?”
“I don’t know. I don’t think yours is, that’s for sure.” They both looked at the way the fender was tucked into the tire and frowned. Her rear bumper was crunched but it was intact anyway.
“I think I will be calling the auto club,” he said with a grin. “Since this is a private parking lot and there apparently are no injuries we don’t need to call the police. I guess we just exchange information and be on our way,” he told her.
They spent the next ten minutes doing just that and then Josh called the auto club. They said it would be about 30 minutes before they could get there. Beth invited Josh to sit in her car with her while they waited.
“That’s crazy. You should go on home. I’ll be fine here, really.”
“So you think I should do a ‘crash and dash’ huh? No way, I know you’re a lawyer now, not a chance!” she laughed.
“Yes, a lawyer. But you haven’t said what you do!”
“I’m a reporter for the LA Free Press, which is why I was here tonight, to interview the band. All in all it hasn’t been the best of evenings!”
“I don’t know, it’s not ending too badly!” He caught her eyes and for a moment something sparked between them. Both of them were quiet, thinking about that. He continued, “So, you aren’t a fan of heavy metal I guess?”
“Nope. Too loud!”
“Yeah, they are loud, but I still love them. Rock out you know!” he told her laughing as she vehemently shook her head no.
“Well, you can have them! Give me something a bit quieter, like emo!”
“Emo? Oh man, here I was hoping I could ask you out until you said that. An emo girl? I don’t know if I can go out with an emo girl!”
“Have you ever tried?” she asked with a smile.
“Guess I’m going to find out!” he replied.
Yeah, all in all a great night Josh!
To be continued…
Thirty Three and a Third or Long Playing…
“Oh my gosh Mick! I can’t believe you still have some of those old albums! What do you do with them?”
“I play them. See, I have some old ‘78’s and these, my favorites are the LP’s.” Mick told her as he reverently held one. “Count Basie, Chairman of the Board. It came out in 1959.”
“So it’s like old,” Beth teased.
“Yeah, like ME!” He gave her with a lop-sided grin, his eyes twinkling with laughter.
“So what does LP mean?” she asked curiously.
Mick mentally rolled his eyes but answered, “Long Playing. It plays at a speed of thirty-three and a third revolutions a minute. 78’s play at 78 RPM’s and…”
“And 45’s at 45 RPM’s,” she finished for me, wearing a completely sexy grin.
“Yes.” I slipped the album out of its dust cover and held it up, ready to put in on the stereo.
“Hm.” She cocked her head to one side and she thought about it. “That’d be like on one of those old turntables, right?” she asked with an innocent bat of her crystal-blue eyes. “So how long is ‘long playing’ exactly? Does it mean it lasts a long time?”
Mick huffed an impatient breath before he caught on to her game. “Yeah, a looonng time Beth. It’s vintage you know so we weren’t into ‘instant’ gratification back then!”
“Instant gratification? Heaven forbid,” she teased with a flirtatious roll of her eyes. “I might need a demonstration though, for uh, practical purposes!”
“Really?” he asked, taking a step closer to her. He tilted his head down and lightly danced his lips across her cheeks and down her nose.
Beth shivered in anticipation. “Mm, you know, sometimes there could be something said for instant gratification!”
“Not a chance. I’m going to help you learn to appreciate long playing Beth.” Another soft kiss, this time along her collar bone added to her shivers. He scooped her up and practically leaped the stairs all at once to get her up to the bedroom.
He toed the bedroom door open and then gave it a gentle kick from behind to make it close. They both ignored the soft click it made as it shut behind them. Mick sat her down on the edge of the bed and started to unbutton her blouse, one at a time as he knelt between her legs. He took his time, kissing a bit of exposed skin with each satisfying release of a fastener. As the last one opened he slid the blouse down over her shoulders and arms, letting his fingers trail lightly over her arms. Goose bumps accompanied the gesture and Mick smiled with delight to see them.
His lips graced those sensitive bumps, playfully raising more along the way before his mouth glided upwards to her collarbone. Beth moaned softly and ran her fingers though the dark curls on his head, lightly tugging them to pull his mouth up to hers for a stirring kiss. Their tongues in a primal mating dance and the kiss went on and on until they were both breathless.
Mick reached down and unfastened the front hook of her bra, and pushed the straps down over her shoulders in a mellifluous motion and then tossed it over his shoulder. First his fingers and then his mouth caressed her blossoming nipples that were becoming taut with desire. Beth was panting by then, soft little sounds of arousal escaping her parted lips.
Mick chuckled as he tugged gently on one of the stiffened peaks. Deft fingers embraced the luxurious swell of her breasts, caressing and molding them in his cool hands. His lips playfully nuzzled the underside of one breast, his tongue licking along the soft skin before he captured the nipple between his blunt teeth. His hands paid homage to the other neglected breast, teasing it with his fingers; it brought a low moan of desire from her, a slow sound of aching need that came from deep inside her throat.
He laid Beth back on the bed and unbuttoned her jeans and then tugged the zipper down. As he worked the garment off of her body he realized his hands were shaking slightly he was so aroused. Beth let her eyes travel down his body and saw with anticipation the abundant gift that was awaiting her; the only problem was that it was still hidden in his pants!
Beth tried to reach up impatiently and unfasten his jeans, but he playfully danced away from her and said, “No, I’m teaching you about long playing, remember?” His eyes ate her up and with relish he removed the tiny bit of lace that was covering the blond curls between her legs. He could see a glistening bit of moisture peeking out of the curls and he inhaled deeply, scenting her need. He traced an eager finger tip over the exposed folds and smiled at her sharply indrawn breath. The liquid honey flowed over his fingers and he spread it around the delicate flesh before sliding a finger inside of her.
She moaned, louder this time and he joined the first finger with a second and moved them in and out of her eager body as her hips rose to meet his fingers. He couldn’t resist a taste of the nectar and before she could catch her breath he was feasting on the hardened nub of desire, tracing his tongue over it softly and then stroking downward to lap gently and the pool of juices that accumulated around his fingers.
Beth was writhing with need and then she was falling over passions edge, her screams keening wildly in the room. They were the most beautiful sounds that Mick had ever heard.
He quickly divested himself of his clothes and pulled her upwards on the bed before joining their bodies and their mouths. Lips and tongues worshiped one another in a scorching kiss that went on and on.
Beth threw her legs around his waist to allow him deeper access into her willing body. He stroked her deeply and steadily, driving her wild as another orgasm approached. His hands lifted her bottom up higher and his rhythm increased until both of them were calling the others name. On and on it went until Beth was sure that he couldn’t possibly make her come again; and yet he did.
Beth’s body was trembling so wildly that she felt out of control, as if her body no longer belonged to herself and as another orgasm washed over her, she felt Mick kissing her neck before the exquisite bite brought her over the edge one last time with Mick joining her in the moment of ecstasy.
He rolled over and carried her with him, pulling her tightly against his side. After they both caught their breaths he murmured against her hair, “So, LP or CD?”
Beth chuckled and said, “I think I’ll take the long playing Mick! Forever!”