Blood Is Thicker
Each day provides its own gifts. Being chosen comes at a hefty price.
Eric entered unnoticed through the employee entrance; in his office, he was pleased to find the paperwork he’d ordered his deputy to acquire. He knew that his procurement of Aether had a heavy price tag, there was no way of knowing how many people are aware of her now. Someone could copy Paul and she could be captured and sold. She could be seized by any Monarch, Chancellor, or even the Magistrate; or worse, she could be killed in retaliation. Even though Tara should have filled out the forms with him, he wasn’t going to let Tara’s stubbornness get in the way of what was best for her. So the bar owner retrieved Tara’s actual signature on file and expertly forged her signature on all the required documents. With urgency, he faxed the appropriate documents, in hopes that Tara could be legally registered as his bonded-human companion in the eyes of the Authority. Eric could feel his child nearing before she sashayed into his office.
“You’ve had Cupcake,” She chided, her eyes sparkled with mischief, “Well, how was she?.” Pam hid her disbelief well, she could feel Eric’s overwhelming happiness and she knew Tara was the cause.
At that moment, Eric realized that soap and water could not wash it away; his cologne could not mask it. Aether blood coursed through his veins, her unique scent covered his own; and he did not mind one bit.
“State your business child.” He clipped, annoyed at her curt interruption of his thoughts.
“The wolves had been sighted in the woods near your St. Landry property; no one knows why they’re sniffing around or who they work for. And new vamps were here last night, your deputy failed to watch them properly.”
“Is that all Pamela?” Eric was pleased; the news was of great value, now he could proceed accordingly.
“What’s that around your neck?” She scoffed. Leering at the gold medallion like Eric was growing a second head.
“You know what it is and who gave it to me.”
His circumvention did not fool her. “Are you in love with Cupcake?” She threw her hands up in the air no longer able to mask her aversion. “I don’t fucking believe it! Are you really falling for that- that lighting- shooting witch!?” Her voice seeped with irritation.
“She is mine- that is all you need to know - Now get out.” He bluntly replied, at the same time his phone pinged.
“Fine... are you staying tonight, the human’s get- all pissy when you’re not here.” She huffed like a child as she stood from her seat, her shiny heels clicked when she glided towards the door. With her hands on her hips, she waited for a response.
He ignored her and read the message from Alcide. Tara has arrived safely at your residence. And then he smiled, “I plan on it; now that Tara is safe with us -now leave me alone.”
Somewhat satisfied, Pam nodded and left.
Earlier that day...
I wrote my sleeping vampire a short, sweet note and left him a little present; fully aware that he’d still be pissed that I left. I could feel his possessiveness through our bond and it exceeded neurotic. With anybody else, this behavior would be unacceptable. But for me, with Eric, it’s normal.
As I rode in a cab, Shreveport bound, I thought about my dream slash visit with Isabelle. I needed to better understand my dreams, my past memories. The Vesica Pisces book was little help. That book is so cryptic and difficult to decipher, I just don’t have the knowledge to figure it out myself. I’m so thankful that Nora is very knowledgeable and she is willing to help me when I call or summon her. Since this is not an emergency, I sans the summoning and I rang her the old-fashioned way.
“Greetings Tara,” She answered in her cheerful British accent.
“Hey, Nora, I’ve got some questions, I hope you can help me out...”
“Of course, I’ll do my best.”
“Well…last night, I was in a realm with a woman named Isabelle. She said that she was with me and my bonded...and umm...” I paused trying to find my words and then she began to speak after a moment.
“You were visited by the recently slain elder of our Coven Isabelle Beaumont when witches die our soul resides in the Realm of Light, the home of Isis, it is a place of refuge from Absalom.”
That’s interesting...“…So what about the bonded thing..?”
“I suspect you and Eric consummated your relationship.”
I could hear the smile on her face.
“That is none of yo business Noise-Rosie, I don’t ask what you and Franklin be doin between the sheets.”
She giggled and it caused me to giggle too. “Understood, Isabelle was simply making you aware that you and your vampire have a place in the home of Isis. This is a good thing; however, it also could make your loved ones a target for witch-hunters.”
I gulped hard, “How so..?”
“If a witch-hunter is successful in a blood sacrifice, then the slain soul will become the property of Absalom, giving her strength. Luckily most hunters are inbred idiots and haven’t been able to properly perform a sacrifice in decades. But if they ever succeed, they could usher in Absalom, the soul eater. Our dear Isabelle predicted your arrival and gave her life making sure that we lived to see you ushered onto your throne.”
I was momentarily speechless. “Nora, thanks for the info, I feel like I should be doing something, but I’m not sure what that is.”
“Hone in on your powers. Now that you and Eric have exchanged blood, you should expect to share his abilities and he will share yours.”
“Wow, vamp-powers too...Okay...I’ll practice blasting stuff... and wait for the vamp stuff to happen…thank you.”
“You are most welcome Tara.”
Well, I’ll be a...I think I’m some kind of archangel to the Lord of Light (Isis), Mother Isis has a diabolical ass sister (Absalom) who is the Queen of darkness, and her factions are trying to consume the energy of witches so the Devil can gas up to make hell on Earth. From here on, I’ll have to be mindful of an evil divinity who wants to destroy me and demonically possessed witch-hunters who want to help her out with that. On top of that, I may have more thirsty vampires after my blood and their V-addicted Wolf-stalkers who can hunt me down during the day. This is all beyond fucked-up–ness... How do you prepare for some shit like that? I really want to be a good Aether- I have no choice, it’s what I am. I thank Nora again for her info and ask her to keep me posted on anything evil deity, thirsty vampire, witch hunter or V-wolf related. She promised to do exactly that. I end my call as the taxi pulled up to my apartment building. As I’m digging for my key, Mr. Barry, my landlord stops sweeping the sidewalk and approached me.
“Hey Tara, this is for you.” He dug into his jacket and handed me a black and red envelope, no doubt it’s from Eric.
“You can drop your keys in the mail slot.” He grabbed his broom from the ground and continued his sweeping.
“Umm...thanks, Mr. Barry...” I stuttered in confusion.
Why does Mr. B want my keys? I opened the envelope; it has a note and two keys on a Fangtasia keychain. I pull the note out.
I will not tolerate my woman living in run-down accommodations.
Your slumlord has been paid in full and has allowed my servant to move your things.
This is the address of your new home:
3210 Bayou View Place
Winston, LA 70458
Oh hell no!
That cocky old bastard! I cannot believe the nerve of him... How dare he just move my things without my permission! I had to take a deep soothing breath; my powers are fueled by my emotions and my agitation was making the winds around me gust. I know if I got too upset, I’ll aggravate the elements and alert Eric. So I calmed myself by pacing the sidewalk. Fuck it! I’ll go to his Winston Parrish house. I’ll get my raggedy shit and bounce. I thought I wanted this with him. But this is just too damn much. And after a few more minutes of pacing like a raging fool, I dropped my apartment keys into Mr. Barry’s mailbox and call for another taxi.
After an hour and a half in the hot musty cab, my eyes cannot believe what they’re seeing. The taxi pulled into a driveway that went on for miles. Eric’s lake-front home is absolutely stunning. The acres of lawn are well manicured and beautifully landscaped. I see a familiar face as I jump out of the cab. It’s Alcide, the cute, loyal wolf. He hurried down to greet me, as I get closer, I notice his big brown eyes, eyeing my legs and thighs. I have on very snug fitting white short-shorts and a sexy little purple tank top.
“Hi Alcide, what are you doing here?”
He gave me a nonchalant nod. “I was sent to test the perimeter, and keep watch until Northman returns.”
I figured that, but it never hurts to ask. He politely offered to pay for my taxi and asked for my duffel bags. I handed him my bags and politely decline his offer, and paid my own fare. After I paid the driver, we silently made our way up the long driveway to the house. I could tell he had something on his mind so I curiously began eavesdropping on his thoughts.
‘Goddamn, she so pretty, but she’s obviously a fang-banger, so forget about it.’
I stopped eavesdropping. I didn’t need to know anymore. Even though I stopped reading his thoughts, I could still sense his emotions. Alcide, the wolf has a huge ever growing crush on me... I couldn’t help being flattered.
“Is there anyone else here? Pam? Other vampires or wolves..?”
He shook his head. “Nope...Northman lives alone.” He said, setting my bags by the door.
“Cool...you don’t have to stay here and babysit me ya know; I can take care of myself and besides, this place seems pretty safe.” The house was well-lit, had an automated gate, high fences, no trespassing signs, and security cameras. In addition, I’m slowly torturing the poor guy. And a bodyguard, no matter how cute, is just not my thing.
“I know you can...remember, I’ve seen you in action, but this is my job.” He said, peering at me with curiosity and lust, my cheeks warmed and I smiled at him. ′I’d never met anything like Tara. Her fresh and natural scent stimulated that wild out of control response; she made me want to shift, hunt and howl at the moon. I’ve visualized that night in the woods so many times. The feeling of her capturing my mind, becoming a part of my pack, all the while, searching for me, navigating with amazing speed, in almost no light, was like being on the best drug. She destroyed a vampire with the wind, water, and lightning bolts. And, man, Tara is smoking hot.′
“It’s cool if you roll out, just think of it as getting outta work early to enjoy your Friday night...” ‘She said to me, while I watched her perfect, straight white teeth flash from beneath her tempting bee-stung lips.’ “...but if you stay, I’m gonna think its cause you want too.” ′My mouth goes dry, and I swallow trying to get some saliva going again. I know better, she belonged to a vampire and that made her totally unavailable. I gathered the strength to turn and walk away from the most tempting woman I’d ever met... As I headed towards my old blue Chevy pickup truck, I sent Northman a text message letting him know I took care of my orders...And I didn’t dare look back...′
Eric’s house is just as stunning on the inside as it is on the outside. High ceilings, granite counters, flat screen computers, modern entertainment systems. Hardwood floors, shiny fixtures, wall-hangings and spatial designs. Everything worked pleasantly. The windows gleamed, the house smelled so fresh. As I moved through the rooms, I touched exteriors, surfaces, book spines, chair backs, handles, and knobs. I knew Eric would have no trouble picking up my scent in these rooms. I can’t explain how much it thrills me knowing my scent drove him wild. His office had several computer monitors which gave many views of the grounds. It seems that there was a button or switch for everything. He could open, close, turn on, turn off everything from this room. The next room held more unique, personal items. I opened the case, closely observing the ancient pieces.
There was a coarse woolen cloak with buttons made of polished wood, with an elaborate brioche of beautiful and intricate designs to fasten the cloth. And a shield and ax made of wood and metal. I evoked my visions of his human life and now realize he would always have his rough callused hands, a permanent reminder of when he was human. The ancient crown is discreetly displayed in his study. It had an odd shape to it, with nearly no decoration, still, it was obviously forged by very skilled craftsmen. It looked older than the crowns I’d seen in any history books about kingdoms and empires. I could feel its importance, the sentimental value, so I didn’t dare touch that.
I go upstairs and open a door. The guest room has all my things from my apartment, (minus my kitchen items) neatly placed and ready for me to use... Jeeze, everything I own fits into the smallest room of his house. His master bedroom is enormous, it had a sitting area, its own massive bathroom and an incredible fifteen jetted (yeah I counted) hot tub. I step onto the balcony to an amazing view of a vast golf course. I sit for a while and watch the lovely sunset. All the while I contemplate getting dressed up and going to Fangtasia, despite knowing Eric doesn’t want me out alone, especially at night.
I think more about it as I go downstairs to the kitchen for water. He had plenty of beverages, various alcohol, and non-alcoholic varieties. And it’s no surprise that it wasn’t a crumb of food in the house; so I grab a bottle of water and then two more. I drink them all and I think about leaving again, as I pace around the counter island looking up at the ten feet high ceiling. I’m deep in thought with my elbows resting on the granite counter when I spot a door to an unexplored room. I open the door to a pretentiously large garage, big enough to fit three SUV’s. Just when I thought his Porsche was showy enough. I find myself gawking at his sleek black Maserati. I wonder how he acquired all this wealth. How long did it take him? He’s had a thousand years, so he’s had plenty of time to master the art. I’d imagine he’s good at making money; hell, he’s making money right now at Fangtasia.
Suddenly I hear this clanking noise. It sounded like locks latching. I run down the hall to Eric’s office and I look on the surveillance monitors. The main gate is shutting; a light is beeping on the screen.
ALERT-Perimeter Secure-Voltage ACTIVE.
What the fuck..?
I call Eric’s cell, hoping he answers; the phone rang only once. “Yes, lover...”
“Don’t you yes lover me..!” Silent dead air... I’m picturing his perfect face, that icy glare as he sits all high and mighty on his throne. “...I like this house and all...”
“That pleases me Goddess...”
I love it when he calls me that. “...I’m not finished... I thought it would be cool staying here until this place turned into a goddamn prison on lock-down.”
“It is for your safety. In the office are monitors that keep constant surveillance of the grounds. The reinforced window shutters are set on a timer, which I’ve set to activate at 8 PM. The fence has a fatal voltage for humans or wolves; it’s also galvanized with silver for any vampire’s stupid enough to enter. Signs are posted giving trespassers fair warning. ”
Impressive Mr. Big- shot... “I wanna leave...”
“No!” he snapped, “I shall arrive at midnight. A credit card is in the guest room, and your own notebook, shop online, order whatever you please.”
He sounded cold, I felt kept...but I could feel his fear. He was afraid that I’d disobey. He knew that his fancy fences and locks could keep the bad things out, but nothing could keep me in.
“Eric, you can’t keep me locked up like this.”
“I cannot min vackra, but stay there for me nonetheless.”
Shit...So much for being pissed off at him... he’s still an overbearing asshole.
“Fine, you better have your Viking ass here when the clock strikes 12 or I’m teleporting back to my Coven in New Orléans.”
That was a big fat lie, the truth was, just hearing his sensual voice and feeling how much he worried and missed me made me weak. I wanted to wait for him. I’m so pathetic.
“Yes, lover, I will have my Viking ass and massive cock home for you promptly at midnight.”
“Bye Eric...” I go to the guest room and open up my very first computer. It takes me about thirty minutes to get the laptop all set up the way I like. Now I’m ready to shop. First-things-first, I order a pizza and take the notebook to the front porch and wait for my dinner. Twenty minutes later, my pizza arrives. I eat a few slices and have a couple of cold beers. I piddle around for a while and I still have an hour to wait until midnight. So I make my way back to the guest room, dig in my duffel bag. Out of sheer boredom, I undress and put on a pink, lace bra and pantie set.
After applying a little makeup, I snap a few sexy selfies, then send them to Eric. It’s my way of reminding him of what he’s got waiting for him.
In less than a minute, he responds. Lover, no one pleases me more than you. Never had, never will, you are everything, min Tara.
Damn, why do his words do that to me...? I was so turned on now and so was he. I could feel it. I teleport back to the porch and waited... He was closer; his color signature pulsated deviously. I look to the starry, crescent moonlit sky and watch in wonder as my sexy Viking, Vampire Sheriff finally arrived.d.