"Austin, you're like a big baby!"
"I am not!"
"You're covered in blood," Miranda said while pointing to his grey t-shirt from the tree she was sitting in. She smiled when he pouted. "Didn't you mother tell you not to play with your food? Also, you're a newborn vampire."
Austin only rolled his eyes at her. "Why did you change me?" he asked. He knew his feelings for her, but didn't know her feelings for him.
"You risked your life for mine."
"So no other reason?"
"What makes you think there was another reason?"
"The two or so times you kissed me back."
"That doesn't mean anything," Miranda whispered looking at the branch above her.
"It doesn't?" Austin asked while jumping on the branch next to hers, smiling when he saw who red her checks were. "Danielle told me something."
"What did Danielle tell you?"
"That no one could love you. Is that true?"
"Miranda, you're not a monster."
"No matter what you do, you'll never change my mind about you."
Miranda only looked at him, before putting her head back on her knees. She was a monster, it was just a fact. Austin smiled. He knew that it would take some time for her to get used to the thought of being love.
"Miranda, you're a beautiful soul."
"Tell that to the people I've killed."
"That was over a hundred years ago." Austin told her. "Besides you feel guilty about it. That proves you aren't a monster, after all a monster doesn't feel guilt."
Austin looked at the bathroom door. He knew Miranda felt guilty about the thing she had done in her life, but he wished he had the courage to tell her how much he loved her.
"Why won't she accept me? Or herself?" he asked himself as soon as he finished his sentence, his phone rang, somehow his IPhone was still working, quickly answering the unknown number. "Hello?"
"Hey, Austin I thought you'd be up and about by now."
"Danielle? How did you get my number?"
"Jerry," Danielle told him. Austin could only sigh at her words, of course he gave Danielle his number. "Still haven't told her?"
"What if she doesn't like me?"
"She doesn't see you as a brother."
"There are three different… 'changes' to speak of, family, friend and mate," Danielle told him. While she hadn't had to use any of them, she knew about them. While Miranda got taught by their mother, she got taught by their father, who was changed when the third 'transformation' technique was created. "She used the 'mate' one on you, so she won't be able to use it again."
"Oh, I didn't know this."
"She didn't tell you?"
"She hinted at it."
"While blaming herself?"
"Miranda will never change," Danielle told him. She wondered what made Miranda hate herself so much, maybe she should tell her that Thomas wouldn't want to see her in pain? That he was reborn and was very close. "You're covered in blood?"
"How did you know?"
"My first few hunts, Miranda would compare me to a baby."
"She did that to me."
"She's playing with you."
"Anyway, you're taking a bath."
"Yes, I'm about to."
Miranda looked at the walls of the guest bedroom. Austin was taking too long, she was able to clean get the clothes. "What have I gotten myself into?" she asked herself. She wasn't a heartless monster, but at times she wished she was, since she would be less confused. "Why me? What have I done to deserve this?"
"Who's there?" Miranda asked looking around the room. Looking at the mirror, she saw a reflection and walked closer to it. "Who's trying… mother!"
"Kaitlyn's little boy!" Kyleigh said a smile on her face. "He was the one with you. He was always following you around like a little duckling..."
"That was Austin!"
"Who did you think it was?"
"I didn't know Kaitlyn asked you to babysit." Miranda told her while looking at the mirror. Austin would have to wait for a while. "So why don't you look surprised?"
"The way you acted around him, even as a child you had to protect him."
"Because he was a child."
"Miranda, I want you to be happy."
"I am happy."
Kyleigh just looked at her daughter. She didn't know why she couldn't admit that she wasn't happy with her life. "Really?"
"I can tell when you're lying."
"It's not every day we meet our other half," Kyleigh told her daughter a smile on her face, while Miranda just slightly frowned at her. "However, it's worse when we're caught in the past, blocking our future, they would want you to live on, Miranda, for everyone you love let yourself to have some joy in your life."
"What about Danielle?"
"What about her?"
"How do we, no I¸ know his not going to turn around and say he never loved me?" Miranda asked putting her hands on the fire place. "How do I know he liked me, we're mates yes, but what if he doesn't like me?!"
"There's always that risk, but sometimes it works out," Kyleigh said. She knew her daughter had a hard time opening up, but this was borderline silly. "Your mates, get to know him and you'll see how much he likes you. After all, your my daughter who wouldn't like you."
"No pain, no gain?"
"Now go and talk to him."
"No buts young lady, besides the one that needs to move."
"His in the bath!"
"He'll be naked."
"Your mates, dear, get over it."
"You'll be seeing naked soon enough."
"Mother!" Miranda shouted while her face went a bright red.
"You can tease others about, but can't take it yourself?" Kyleigh asked lightly laughing at her daughters reddening face. "Now go and if you don't. I'll make Danielle, push you and Austin into a small locked room… naked."
"You won't regret it."
Austin had watched of the last of blood awhile ago, so know he was just thinking. The water was still warm since he had to get rid of the bloody water and replace it.
"Your clothes are washed and I was able to find something for you to wear."
"Bloods off, but I just refilled the bath."
"Can I came in?"
"Sure," Austin told her. He heard Miranda sigh while walking into the room, with black pants, boxers and a grey shirt. She didn't look at him, instead looking at the floor. "Miranda, something wrong?"
Miranda muttered a sentence while putting Austin's clothes on the sink, making sure they wouldn't get wet. She would have a bath after Austin, so she set her things on the floor next to the white marble.
Turning to leave the room, she muttered the same line. Sadly, for her, Austin pulled her into the bath. "What was that?"
"Besides my family, I've never seen a naked man," Miranda whispered while Austin drew her into a hug. "Why did you pull me into the bath?"
"Thought we were mates," Austin said while Miranda put her head on his shoulder, hiding her red face behind her hair. "Besides you're covered in dirt, dust and blood as well. So you need a bath and why waste water, when we can just share one."
"Did you have to share baths back then?"
"Then how is this different?"
"It was with my sisters! You're not like a brother to me, you're …."
"You're? What am I to you?"
"Like you, like, like," Miranda whispered.
"Well. I like, like you as well," Austin whispered wondering why they were taking like a ten year old, but it seemed Miranda was new to this, so he didn't mind. "Why don't you take your clothes off and we can take a bath. Before you say anything, I won't do anything you're not familiar or comfortable with."
"Fine," Miranda whispered, while pulling off her shirt showing off the usually white singlet she wore underneath.
"Miranda, you don't have to be shy about your looks," Austin told her kissing her forehead when she looked like she was going to say something. "You're the prettiest girl I've ever met."
"Your cheesy, you know that right?"
"You still love me, right?"
"Like I love you."
"Even with my self-hating persona?" Miranda asked looking him in the eye, she wanted to know if he would like to her.
Austin rolled his eyes at her question, but it was true. I was like she hated everything about herself. She gave others so much breathing room to mess up, but when it came to herself she would beat herself about it. "Of course, but you should have more faith in yourself."
"Since we're going to have fight Hakan soon."
"I'll tell you that when Jerry and Danielle are here," Miranda told him while hitting his arm. "I don't want to repeat myself."