T W E N T Y - O N E
I slid my tongue across her bottom lip, licking away the cool, sweet, and refreshing taste of the pomegranate juice.
She made a sound in the back of her throat when I nipped her lip and I smiled wickedly into our kiss, the burning in my veins calming down the instant my lips touched hers.
I kissed her deeper for a second more, savoring the feel of her lips on mine, before I pulled away.
I pulled back an inch and smiled when I saw that her eyes were closed and she was breathing rapidly.
“Thanks” I said softly, rubbing the skin of her neck in a soft, circular motion.
“Uh....” she squeaked, her eyes popping open to reveal the lingering desire and confusion “You’re welcome?”
There was a snicker from our left side and I shot my brother a glare.
“You” I pointed towards the door “Out. NOW.”
“I’m going” He held up his hands in surrender “Don’t get your panties in a twist.”
He walked to the exit but not before grabbing Joey and planting a kiss on her lips.
She beamed, her eyes finding mine with a triumphant look in them.
I rolled my eyes and turned my head back to Serenity, who was watching me with an intrigued look on her pretty blush stained face.
“Why was that drink called the Kiss of Life?”
I smiled and reached over the bar, grabbing all the ingredients needed to recreate the drink.
“I am not doing that again” she blushed harder, eyes avoiding mine “Not that it wasn’t...uh...unpleasant.”
“Relax Princess” I smiled “Just watch.”
I lifted up the drink and, like before, it lit on fire.
Instead of drinking the Lotus Liquor, I grabbed the other shot glass filled with pomegranate seeds and dumped them into the Liquor.
When the two ingredients synthesize, the liquor that was on fire immediately froze.
Serenity’s eyes widened in shock.
“The Lotus concentrate, on it’s own, burns the Mucosa or intestinal lining of the body. Making it feel like you’re burning from the inside out. Some say it feels like they’re dying. When the pomegranate seeds make contact with the concentrate, a chemical reaction occurs where the juice from the seeds counteract the reaction, thus causing relief.”
“Kiss of Life” she whispered “So the Lotus concentrate makes you feel like you’re dying...”
“And the Pomegranate seeds relieve that feeling” I grinned “Cool right?”
“But it defines the laws of chemistry” She shook her head, walking towards the exit “It just doesn’t make sense.”
“So does being in Hell” I snorted, gesturing to our surroundings “But yet, here you are.”
She smiled “That’s why you told me to not eat or drink anything here.”
“Not really” I said “Only the Kiss of Life contains pure Lotus extract which happens to cause that specific reaction. When the Lotus extract is mixed with something else, like into food or other drinks with more ingredients, you don’t get the same effect. Just like you don’t get the same effect when you crush the Lotus flower itself and mix it into something else.”
“Huh” she hummed, taking in my words.
I paused “Didn’t Persephone go over this with you yet?”
She snorted “I don’t think that when she was teaching me about the Underworld Herbs or Roots, she particularly thought that I needed to know how different liquor effects me.”
I frowned “Huh”
Serenity sided eyed me “What was that for?”
“It was not nothing” she knocked my shoulder with hers “Just tell me.”
“It’s just...” I sighed “Lotus flower isn’t just used for fun drinks. It has many beneficial uses to those who know how to handle it. I thought that since Persephone discovered the damn flower, she would show you how to care for and handle it properly.”
“She discovered the flower?”
I nodded “Before King Odysseus found himself stranded on a strange Island, the origin of the Lotus Flowers, Persephone visited the barren land in order to practice her ever-growing powers. The lotus flower was the first and last creation she ever made on that Island before she was forced to flee.”
I cupped my hands, closed my eyes and concentrated on the one image I wanted to manifest.
When I was finished, I opened my hands and grabbed Serenity’s, cupping her hands in order for her to hold the delicate flower.
“It’s beautiful” she whispered, staring at the pearlescent pink petals as well as the multi-chrome center of the flower.
“It is” I said.
I was suddenly hit with a bout of nausea with a dash of giddiness rising up.
‘Oh no’ I groaned internally ‘The Lotus extract is taking effect’
“Why was she forced to flee?”
I shrugged, tampering down my rising giggles.
’DAMN YOU CERBERUS!′ I growled, thinking about ways I could get him back for his stupid game.
He knew how I got when I drunk any type of Lotus drink. That’s why I’m willing to bet the Bastard picked this bar in particular.
He wanted to make me look like a fool in front of my beautiful Serenity.
“Well, uh...” I swallowed thickly “Demeter, Persephone’s mother, caught wind that Hades was enraptured by a mysterious Goddess that was on a deserted Island practicing her gifts. Because Demeter hated virtually anyone that wasn’t her daughter, she was enraged to find out that God, the King of the Underworld no less, took a keen interest in something that was so precious to her. She feared that if he hooked his talons into her, she would forever be lost to the darkness. Therefore, she collected her daughter, told her about the dangerous man that was after her, and then they both disappeared into the night.”
“But that doesn’t explain why she had to give up her newly found discover” She scrunched her nose and I restrained myself from leaning forward and kissing it.
“She tried to recreate it” I said, sweating profusely to stop me from blurting out something inappropriate “But she later discovered that the Island itself was something special. The soil, after she revived it, was mixed with certain properties that reacted to her gifts. I don’t know the whole science behind it but from what she told me, that Island was the only place she could make this particular flower.”
We exited the bar and found Cerberus grinning, leaning against the wall, tossing a coin up in the air.
“Has it kicked in yet?” He smirked.
I flipped him off, leading Serenity back out to the spot we manifested from.
Cerberus followed behind us, snickering.
“You’re really pretty” I blurted out suddenly.
Cerberus’ snickers grew and Serenity looked startled at my abrupt comment.
“I want you to have my babies” I giggled.
I’m going to kill him when this stuff was out of my system.
My eyes widened as dizziness hit me “No, I want to have YOUR babies!”
Serenity looked at me weirdly but then snorted “I don’t think it works that way.”
Cerberus was rolling on the floor, laughing his ass off like it was the funniest thing on the earth to see me like this.
“That wasn’t a no...” I gripped her soft wrist, caressing the smooth skin, and losing my train of thought.
“Zephyr” She snapped her fingers in front my face “Are you okay?”
I smiled, leaning my face closer to hers “I’m perfect now that you’re here.”
“He’s H-A-M-M-E-R-E-D” Cerberus sung.
“Because of one drink?” Serenity asked, worriedly cupping my face.
“Baby bro was never much of a drinker” Cerberus snorted “Unless you count Chamomile Tea.”
“Can we go home now?” I whined, twining my arm around Serenity’s waist “We have babies to make and beds to break!”
“Woah woah woah!” Serenity laughed “We’re not that close.”
“But I want to be” I whispered huskily in her ear and she shivered “Don’t you?”
I kissed her neck and she whimpered before pushing my face away from hers.
“Slow down Casanova.”
She turned to Cerberus and I growled, gripping her waist and tugging her back to my front.
“This is your fault!” she accused, pointing a finger at him.
He shrugged “Whatever do you mean?”
I giggled into Serenity’s neck “You’re so soft”
She sighed, gripping my arm around her waist like a vice “Can you take us home or not?”
“Sorry, no can do” Cerberus said “Only baby brother has that power.”
“What can you do?” Serenity snapped.
Cerberus’ face remained stoic but I could see him flinch.
“Nothing apparently” he muttered so low that Serenity didn’t catch it.
“Zephyr” Serenity spun to face me “I need you to listen to me.”
I stared at her, my heart pumping over time “I do anything for you my Love.”
“That’s great” she said quickly, kissing my cheek “I need you to get us home.”
I touched my cheek, smiling adoringly at her “Home?”
She nodded “Yes, home”
“So we can make babies?” I beamed.
“I’m so going to regret this” she muttered under her breath before giving me a megawatt smile “Yes Zephyr, so we can make babies.”
I hauled her into me before grabbing Cerberus by the scruff of his neck.
“Geez” Serenity muttered in amusement “That’s all it took? Normally most guys run away in terror at the thought of being a dad.”
“Not me” I answered honestly “I wanted to be your husband since the moment that I saw you.”
“Of course guys want to claim girls after they see them all dressed up at a Ball” she snorted “But you all don’t take a second glance at us when we’re dressed up in our comfy clothes without any make-up.”
I shook my head “That’s not the first time that I saw you.”
She gave me a quizzical look “What?”
“We’re here” Cerberus deadpanned “You can let me go now.”
I released him but held onto my Love, pulling her along to our room.
“ZEPHYR!” She called out, dragging her heels “Slow down!”
“No time to waste!” I laughed, stopping for a brief second before bending at the waist, tucking her into my shoulder, and lifting her up like a sack of potatoes.
“YOU BIG OAF!” she hollered, slamming her little fists into my back “LET ME DOWN!”
I smacked her ass “Quiet down or else Hades will investigate!”
She continued to whisper hiss at me, kicking out her legs.
I let her down when we were at our bedroom door.
She pushed me but I barely moved at the movement.
I nudged her inside.
“No” she said, stubbornly raising her chin at me.
I shrugged and went to pick her up again when she kicked her leg out.
“Zephyr wait” she stopped me when I attempted to pick her up again.
“Before we go in there” she started “I want you to answer my one question.”
I nodded eagerly, pulling her softness into me.
“Before we manifested here, you said you saw me somewhere before the Ball” she said “Where did you see me? Did we meet before?”
I nodded and put my face into the crook of her neck.
“Where did we meet before Zephyr?”
“You’re my little Phoenix” I smiled, replaying the memory like it was yesterday “Pulling me from the ashes before I have the chance to lose myself completely.”
I leaned back and smiled down at her.
She gazed up at me like I was an illusion.
We were both quiet.
I nuzzled my face in her neck again, breathing in her unique scent.
She finally spoke up after a few minutes.
“Zephyr, I’m sorry” she said, her tone even.
I kissed her neck “Why are you sorry baby?”
“What-” Before my foggy brain could understand what was happening, she reared her fist back and punched me in my face.
I was out like a light.