I took a home pregnancy test today and it showed negative. I’m trying not to be too concerned because the doctor’s office will take a different type in three days. Home tests are pretty reliable these days they say but I’d rather hear it from Dr. Macon for sure. She told us it doesn’t always (usually) happen the first time and not to be too depressed if it didn’t work. We understand all that, but still, you hope, you know? We are working on a tighter time-line than many other couples; I want to be turned before I’m 40 for heaven’s sake! I don’t want everyone thinking I’m some kind of a cougar with Mick! He laughs about that, but then he’s a man, of course he would.
I keep trying to tell myself to just give it my best, that as much as it would be devastating to us this might not work. If it doesn’t we still have one another and for that I am so thankful. We could adopt and have lightly skirted that subject but right now we’re giving everything we have to the process.
Mick is making sure I’m taking my vitamins and eating healthy. He frowns when I drink coffee or soda and the lift of his eyebrow makes me feel guilty and like the worst possible mom-to-be. I need caffeine! I know, Dr. Macon told me not to drink it but how do pregnant women do it, function without it? He never says anything but I can tell what he’s thinking when he quirks that eyebrow. The other day Josef was here when I came home from work, a coffee in hand and even he looked at me, then at the cup and never said a word. Damn vampires anyway.
On a lighter note today Mom and Dad went to her doctor and found out the sex of their baby! It’s a boy and well, they aren’t sure if the second one is a boy or a girl. TWINS!!! I’m so excited for them; they are too but I think they are a bit shocked at this point. The doctor said that in the earlier sonogram and when listening to the heartbeats is can be overlooked because their tiny hearts become so in sync that they can mask one another. They also like to play peek-a-boo for the camera too. They could tell that one was a boy but couldn’t get a good look at the other. As far as Mom knows there are no twins in our family and Clark doesn’t really know about his.
I asked Mick if he could hear two heartbeats since vamps are so good at it but he told me that he knew the heartbeat was really strong, but didn’t realize that there were two. This is going to be wonderful and I can’t wait to be a big sister. I’m going to have at least one little brother, maybe another, who knows for sure?
Lani came over last night and brought sushi for dinner for us. After he said ‘hi’ Mick headed into his office and closed the door. Lani thought he was just giving us some privacy but I knew that it was because he can’t stand the smell of it. He says he keeps hearing Josef referring to it as bait now and it disgusts him. I’m terrible I know but I laugh at him. How I wish I would have been here that day he ordered the sushi! I missed so much of his life when he was human. I can’t really blame myself for it too much because I was trying to get my head on straight after Josh’s death but I regret that lost time very much. Those were precious days for him and I only got to be in on the last couple of days; I sometimes wonder if he doesn’t hate me just a little for not being there for him. I love him so much and we have so much wasted time in our pasts, time that we could have been together.
Lani told me that she broke up with Eric. She feels terrible, I can tell but the truth is he was falling more in love with her everyday and if she didn’t return that love it’s for the best. Eric is a great guy, but unlike Robbi I have never felt like he was the right guy for Lani. She is so independent and social, and he isn’t. Sometimes opposites attract and it’s a great thing, but not in this case I think. He is a college professor who cherishes his quiet time and is happy staying at home reading. Does that sound like Lani? I think not!
Kelly needed blood but her choices were limited. If she kept getting it fresh, sooner or later her ex cleaner friends were going to catch her. On the other hand, she couldn’t show up at any of the morgues or blood banks because she was definitely persona non grata. She was left with only one choice and it was a disgusting one but beggars couldn’t be choosers. She headed down to Sunset Park late that afternoon and found exactly who she was looking for.
You could always rely on Leo to hang around the kiddies.
“Leo,” she said, taking a seat beside him on the bench. The green paint was flaking off and it was covered with bird shit as well, but at least it was in the shade. She leaned back against the seat and crossed her long legs and watched as Leo studied her.
He looked at her and lifted his head a fraction of an inch to scent her. The woman next to him was a vamp, but she seemed to be tan and had short blond hair. Her jeans were ultra low and her shirt was ultra short; she was a looker. A frown marred his unattractive face, a garish look that made her wince. “Who wants to know?”
She lifted her sunglasses and he stared for a moment and then pulled away, sliding as far away from her as the bench would allow. He stared a bit more and finally looked around before saying, “You’re supposed to be dead. For real; why are you here?”
“Well, let’s just say I have few friends left Leo. I need some help and you are just the guy to provide it.”
“Hell no, stay away from me Kelly. I don’t need any more trouble!”
“Yes, and constantly hanging around kids and getting them drunk to steal their blood won’t do that.” She looked at him squarely in the eyes and her own flashed silver for a moment before she spoke again. “You don’t want to cross me Leo, I know where you bury the bodies, remember?”
Leo closed his eyes for a moment and swallowed convulsively a couple of times. Kelly almost laughed as she observed him. His Adams apple bobbed up and down frantically; it was like watching a cartoon character. “What do you want?” he asked her, looking around to see if anyone was paying them any attention.
“Blood Leo, a steady supply of blood.”
“Why don’t you just go and get it yourself?”
She raised her eyebrows as she stared at him and sighed. “You know perfectly well why I can’t. You have about 5 seconds to say yes Leo,” she said, staring at her watch.
He was caught and he knew it. They made the deal and she agreed to meet him back at the park at 11:00 that night. He watched as she walked away and wished to hell that he could skip town. He picked at the peeling paint for a moment until a little girl chasing a ball came close to him. He caught the sweet scent of her blood from a scrape on her knee and felt his fangs lengthen. No, he couldn’t go.
Beth got home from work late; she and Ben had been out checking on the crime scene for an elderly man who had been murdered before his house was ransacked and robbed. It was a grisly site and all she wanted was to get home and take a shower to wash the day off of her. When she opened the door she spied Mick in the kitchen stirring something delectable on the stove. Memories of the scents in the greenhouse from this morning rushed at her at ballistic speed.
Mick had been puttering around, watering his ‘babies’ as he called his vegetables and herbs. She had come in there to kiss him goodbye before she left for work and drew in a deep, appreciative breath. “Oh wow, it smells like spaghetti sauce just waiting to happen in here!” she declared, sniffing the tomatoes, garlic and herbs.
He looked at her and winked, laughing at the blissful expression on her beautiful face as she inhaled deeply. “You think so? I guess I could do that,” he had told her as he raised a pot of basil for her to smell.
“Oh yeah baby, I can’t wait,” she told him, standing on tippy toes to give him a kiss.
Now as she stood by the door and took off her jacket her nose was telling her that he had indeed accomplished the request. “Oh, just cover me with that stuff! God Mick, it smells perfect!”
He walked towards her wearing that silly apron he had bought that said “Kiss the cook” which she happily did.
“Hey baby, what’s wrong?” he asked as he took in the tired look that made her look so pale. “Rough day?”
“Yes, very. How long until dinner?”
“Whenever you’re ready for it. Now or 2 hours from now. The sauce is done; just have to drown the pasta. Why don’t you go and take a shower and then you can eat?”
She sighed wearily and nodded, pulling him close for a moment. “Have I ever mentioned that I am the luckiest girl alive, to have you in my life Mick?”
“Maybe once or twice, but you can tell me as often as you like. You may be the luckiest girl but then I am definitely the luckiest guy. Now go,” he told her as he pointed her in the direction of the stairs. As she took a step he swatted at her behind playfully and she turned and grinned.
“Careful St. John, you may have to dish up more than just dinner.”
“Mother may I?” he teased.
“We’ll see.” She ran lightly up the steps, already unfastening the buttons on her shirt.
Mick heard the shower come on upstairs and smiled. He decided to turn the burner off under the sauce and head upstairs. He knew that he would find a trail of clothes along the way and he did. He stopped and picked up each piece and held them against his nose, inhaling the scent of his mate. He could smell the stress for her day on them still and it brought out the vamp; the urge to make it all better for her overwhelmed him.
He saw her standing in the shower, letting the water pour over her, her face turned up towards the spray. He watched for a moment before dropping her clothes in a pile and removing his own. He had to make it better for her.
He opened the shower door and stepped in, his eyes glowing silver in the misty spray. Beth caught a small breath and let out a long sigh and a shiver, goose bumps rippling over her wet skin. She looked at him, her crystal blue eyes wide and round as she bit her lower lip.
Mick heard her heartbeat speed up and smelled the warm rush of her arousal even before she knew it was there. He pulled her firmly against him, turning her so that the sloping curves of her behind were tight against his straining erection. He raised her hands above her head, holding them firmly in one hand as he pressed her against the wall and nuzzled against her neck.
She could feel his fangs as they lightly grazed over the sensitive skin of her neck, just below her hairline and felt his rigid cock rubbing between her legs. Her breath caught as she heard him growl, “MINE!”
“Yes, yours Mick, only yours. I need you in me now.”
Instead he slid his mouth down her back, nipping lightly along the way. The fingers of one of his hands caressed her between her legs while the other still held her hands securely above her head. She felt her knees tremble as the heated passion overcame her and a soft mewl escaped her parted lips.
Mick delved first one finger then another into the heated depths of her body, his thumb stroking against the hardened pearl that drove her passion.
“Do you want me Beth? Need me, as I need you?” he asked, his voice a low growl that sent ribbons of desire swirling through her body. Her head jerked in assent and she let out a low moan as she felt his fangs scratch across her shoulder and his tongue lick the tiny beads of blood up, lapping at it quickly. His mouth made little wet sucking sounds and she came in a rush, grinding herself against his hand. As her knees gave away he wrapped his arms around her and turned her around in them, capturing her mouth. Lips fused together while his tongue plunged and swirled in her mouth, making her shake with desire. The kiss went on and on and she finally had to pull away for a moment, gasping to catch her breath before her mouth searched for his again.
She devoured him hungrily, rubbing her tongue over the keen point of his fangs, and letting him suckle at the blood that beaded hotly upon it. She suckled on his lips and murmured, “I want to taste your blood Mick!” He let his fangs nip his own tongue and she immediately started laving it and sucking as his blood flowed into her mouth. It was delicious and took her breath away from the heady sensations it brought. It was almost as if she was feeling what he was feeling; as if they were in a fine gossamer cocoon where only they existed. Every touch they felt together, his body, her body, it was all the same, it was their body and she reveled in the feeling.
He lifted her and she wrapped her legs around him and felt a delicious shudder as he impaled her with his surging manhood, grinding himself into her. His body repeatedly pushed into hers, long and swift strokes that took her breath away. She looked down to watch the connection of their bodies and felt heat suffuse her body and she felt almost light-headed, giddy. Her lower lip, already swollen from his kisses became the focus of her teeth as they bit it, unmindful of any soreness that would result.
She loved him like this, when he let the vamp out. He was still Mick, but the vamp lover was in control; he took mightily and gave more. The silvered eyes, pale countenance, the low growls that emanated from deep within his chest pushed her over the edge, and she careened out of control as she felt him licking his place on her neck. As his fangs sank lightly into that spot she screamed his name and her whole body shuddered with her release.
Mick all but howled as her orgasm washed over her and then he tasted her deliciously warm and sweet blood flooding his mouth; he was lost. Lost to the passion, lost to the primeval call of vampire and mate. He held her close and panted, listening to her try and get her breathing under control.
“I love you Mick, I love you…”
“I love you Beth, my darling, wonderful Beth.”
Colleen drove home slowly after a long shift at work. The past few days there had been several anonymous bodies found drained and no one to charge it too either. It was a concern for the cleaners because if they couldn’t bill someone, they didn’t make any money and while they did it as a service to the vampire community, it was also a money making proposition.
This shift had been slow, which made it feel like it took forever. A quiet drive home was what she needed; the temperature was down a bit and she had all the windows open in the car. She drove by the park on her way and saw someone walking that was strangely familiar. She passed the woman and caught the whiff of vamp, but she wasn’t recognizable at all. Short blonde hair and what looked like a suntan for heaven’s sake. Still, Colleen couldn’t shake the feeling that she somehow knew the person. She made a right turn and pulled into a parking area and prepared to do a little bit of reconnoiter work.
The park had too many kids hanging around it, even at 11 pm. She knew many of them were runaways and she also knew that Leo, also known by the cleaners as ‘pond scum’ would be hanging around here somewhere. She didn’t want to meet him unexpectedly so she let her nose guide her, sniffing constantly to pick up vamp scent which was really hard given all the warm body smells of the humans who mulled around aimlessly.
Finally, after skirting a large group she ducked behind some trees and caught the vamp scent; not one, but two. She peeked over some bushes and spotted not only Leo but the blonde vamp as well. She moved as close as she dared to hear the conversation. Luckily she was upwind from them and she didn’t have to worry about being scented.
“Here,” Leo said, handing the blonde something. “I got it for you. Now get out of here – I don’t want anybody spotting you talking to me.”
“Fine, but two nights from now Leo, you’d better have more!”
Colleen almost fainted when she heard the voice. It was Kelly, but Kelly was dead. Wasn’t she?
Colleens mind raced as she watched Kelly head away from her, to the other side of the park. No way to get to her without being seen. Colleen wanted to know where she was going, but she did hear her tell Leo she’d see him in two nights. She could plan better then.
The more immediate problem was what to do with the information? She instinctively knew she couldn’t trust Katrina because she had told everyone that by Josef Kostan’s decree, Kelly had been eliminated. Colleen thought back to when that happened; there HAD been a body there because she had helped clean up the remains.
It had to have been Billie she realized. Katrina had told them that Billie had decided to move on and yet no one had heard from her since then.
If Kostan had ordered it then maybe he was in on it too? It didn’t seem like his style because Kelly had went after his best friends mate. Mick and Beth were married now she knew and Kostan had been the one to throw the wedding. Still, maybe he had just wanted Kelly out of the way?
She didn’t know, but she was going to have to figure it all out soon because she knew that Kelly would try again to take Beth St. John out.
Eleven o’clock and Ben finally closed the case file that he and Beth had been investigating all day. A robbery/murder case but the perps had torn the man to bits or rather hacked him to bits with a kitchen knife. Beth wasn’t the only one who felt nauseous at the site. He leaned back in his chair and closed his eyes for a moment, contemplating sleeping on his couch here because he was just too damn tired to drive home.
He knew he’d have to go home anyway to clean up so he stood up and grabbed his jacket, preparing to turn his light out when his phone rang.
“Hello,” he said, not bothering with a formal greeting.
“Have you reviewed the list yet? Done your investigation? Did you find it interesting?”
The last thing he wanted to deal with tonight, or ever again Ben answered, “Look, the list is nothing more than a bunch of names cobbled together. Whether you are just trying to stir up trouble with this hoax or you’re just sick, I don’t care. NO, I am not spending any more time investigating your list. Don’t contact me again!” He slammed the receiver down and shut the light out before locking his office door. If nothing else he felt slightly more awake by the call, enough to get him home without falling asleep at the wheel.
On the other end of the phone the called hit the end button on the throw-away cell and said “So, you don’t want to play ADA Talbot? I’ll find someone else who will!”
Josef sat across from Miguel, waiting as he digested the names that Josef had given him. Miguel’s brow furrowed as he thought about them, about the implications of those particular names being together on one list.
“What do you think Josef?” he asked as he leaned back in his chair. Both men grimaced at the loud creek the chair made as he did so.
“I think someone is trying to put out a net and go fishing,” Josef stated, rising to his feet in one fluid motion. “But it’s the variety of fish they are angling for that has me confused.”
Miguel nodded, coming to his feet as well. He walked over to the large window that looked out at the city. “The problem is that we don’t know who the fisherman is or what kind of sport he is looking for.”
Josef looked at him and nodded. Both men were troubled and alarmed at this situation. It was hard to fight back when you didn’t know who the enemy was.
Beth and Mick had finished their shower and he was dishing up some dinner for her when her cell rang. She was going to ignore it until she saw it was Lani. She was really worried about her friend who had been slightly depressed over the breakup with Eric.
“Hey girlie!” she said into the phone, waiting for Lani to speak.
“Hi Beth. What’s going on there?”
Beth grimaced when she heard Lani’s voice; it reminded her of Eyore from Winnie the Pooh. “Not much, Mick fixed dinner and I’m getting ready to eat. You want some spaghetti?”
“No, I ate a little while ago. Look Beth, I need a night with the girls, something to get me out of this funk! You interested?”
“Yeah, sure. Sounds like fun. What do you have in mind?”
“I was thinking that since our last night at the beach ended so abruptly that we could try again; since we don’t have to worry about that woman any longer. We could invite Cami and maybe Elka and Audrey. Robbi is on bed rest because she’s having some problems with preeclampsia which stinks but we can deal with it anyway.”
“That sounds fun. Yes, I would love to go back because that night frankly sucked,” she laughed. “When?”
“Um, Friday night? Not an overnight thing just a party on the beach?”
“Yes, I love it. Have you talked to the others yet?”
“Nope, but that will be my next calls. Talk to you soon!”
Beth hit the end button and sat it into the dock so it could charge. She lifted her nose appreciatively as Mick sat her plate on the table and poured a glass of wine for each of them.
“You heard?” she asked, knowing that his vamp hearing would have heard it all.
“Yep. I’m not sure I’ll ever feel comfortable with you out there, but I think it sounds fun for you guys. Too bad about Robbi.”
She nodded and speared a forkful of spaghetti, twirling it around before scooping it into her mouth. “Um Mick, this is fabulous! Where did you get the recipe?”
“On line,” he laughed. He reached out with a finger and wiped an errant bit of sauce off the corner of her mouth and then popped the finger into his own mouth.
“Anything?” she asked as she watched him.
“Nope, nothing. Oh well,” he said with a grin. “I’ll just have to taste you later!”
“Promise?” she teased.
“You can count on it.”
To be continued…