Chapter 20: Jealousy makes you nasty
As if the past week hadn’t happened at all, I woke in Alexander’s arms. A peaceful smile played around the corners of my mouth as I thought of what my life had been like the past month and how much everything had changed. I mean, sure I almost died but somehow that didn’t seem like such a big deal to me.
Alexander’s eyes snapped open and he smiled a breath-taking smile when he saw me watching him, “Good morning Ashira.”
“Hello Alexander. You know, you killed the person who you were protecting me from so I don’t see why you’re still all up in my personal space like this.” I told him with a wicked grin, referring to why he was still sleeping next to me.
He frowned, “All up in your personal space, you say? I’m only here because I know you like it even if you don’t know it yourself.”
I sighed in defeat, “You know me too well.” And there we laid grinning at one another. Alexander moved closer to me and flashed me a smouldering look.
I swallowed hard and tried to breathe normally and stop my mind from wandering. It didn’t really work. Unable to stand the tension that was building between us I flew out of bed and threw open my closet, “What should I wear for our little ‘tour’ thing?” I asked half-minded.
Alexander laughed, seeming to realise what he’d said “No, I didn’t mean nothing nothing, just nothing special.” He watched me for a moment, as if thinking something through, “Though…” he trailed off suggestively and his eyes that had been fixed on the sliding doors flashed towards me.
“Alexander.” I said firmly.
“Yes?” he asked innocently.
“There are heels in this closet and I have a pretty good arm.” I informed him proudly. Not that I was sure a little shoe could do something against a royal but still… if I put enough rage behind it…
He merely laughed at me like I’d said the funniest thing imaginable, “Whatever you say love.”
I rolled my eyes and pretended that my heart didn’t flutter like a butterfly on drugs at that. For the convenience of the humans it was at precisely mid-day that we were allowed to leave the ship. Nice and sunny mid-day.
After standing in front of my closet for what felt like an hour I decided on jeans and a t-shirt, “Can I take these clothes with me?” I asked Alexander, “I mean, it isn’t like I brought tonnes of other clothes with me.” It sounded strangely sarcastic when I said it even though I didn’t mean for it to be.
“You don’t have to,” he said while uninterestedly flipping through one of my new books. “I’m sure I have clothes at home that will fit you.”
I paused and looked at him curiously, “You have womans clothing in your house?”
He shrugged, “You can borrow Cherise’s clothes or something.”
For some strange reason jealousy gripped hold of me and my grip on my clothes tightened, “Who is Cherise?”
Alexander looked up at me for the first time and tilted his head to the side curiously, “Are you… jealous?”
I scoffed and shut the closet door rather loudly, “No. I was just asking.”
When I turned around to head for the bathroom to get dressed he was standing in front of me with a seductive smirk, “You look really hot when you’re jealous.”
I glared at him, “Don’t just appear in front of me, you’ll give me a heart attack.” I said, “And I’m not jealous!”
He growled lowly as he backed me up against the closet and put his arms on either side of me, boxing me in and whispered huskily in my ear, “Super sexy.”
Oh dear, there went my mind.
My shallow breathing was hardly noticeable as he flattened me against the closet with his own body flush against mine. He pressed his lips to a sensitive spot right below my ear and I was ready to pass out at his touch. “A-alexander.” I tried protesting.
“Yes?” he asked while moving on to lightly biting my neck without breaking the skin.
“I-I h—have to get r-ready.” Goodness! I couldn’t even speak!
He pulled away so he could look at me, “Do you have to?”
“Y-yes.” I sucked in a sharp breath when I realised his eyes were a bright yellow and absolutely deadly. “Your eyes.”
He closed his eyes, “I’m sorry, I can’t help but lose control when I’m around you.” He put his forehead to mine, “You make me crazy.” He took a deep breath and opened his eyes that were almost back to their normal forest green colour, “Especially when your heart is racing like that.”
I blushed and turned my head away to avoid having to look at the jerk, “Whatever.” I wriggled out of his grasp and bee lined for the safety of the bathroom.
I was about to shut the door behind me when Alexander said, “Cherise is Oberon’s Promise Angel by the way, you don’t have to be jealous of her. You don’t ever have to be jealous of anyone,” his eyes looked so honest and intense, “You’re the only one I want.”
His eyes met mine and I swallowed nervously, not knowing what to say to that, “I’ll just be a minute.” I finally got out and shut the door. I let out a sigh of relief as I sagged against the door. Sometimes things between us just got a little too… intense. Not that I didn’t feel more alive in those moments that ever, but still…
I got dressed, brushed my teeth and by the time I was done, my heart beat had slowed down and I had had time to think things through.
Alexander was lazily sitting outside when I couldn’t find him for a moment and he opened one eye to look at me when I neared him, “You finished?”
I nodded, “Yeah, we should probably get going. I want to say goodbye to everyone before they make a run for it.”
And that was it. With one last glance around the room that had been my home for a month and where I’d almost died, I shut the door behind us and we followed the hoard of people who were disembarking.
It was a strange feeling to be standing on solid ground again, it was like I was still swaying around slightly with the imaginary waves. I spotted my friends standing in a little circle a ways off and I ditched Alexander to go say goodbye to them while he went to speak with his nobles.
Rose ran to me when she saw me and we hugged for a long time before she let go, “Promise me we’ll see each other again.” She said through tears.
I smiled, “I promise, I mean, if you just stay with Fabian I’m sure I’ll see you again soon.”
And then she cried while hugging me again.
Next up was Nadine who hugged me without tears but still seemed sad to say goodbye, “Promise me the same.” She said when she let go.
I nodded, “I’m sure I’ll see you again.” I awkwardly hugged Kevin and Troy when they came up to me and made a few lame jokes before going to stand with their girlfriends. Talk about awkward.
And then there was Rustin who I pulled into a hug when he’d only wanted a hand shake. I patted his back when his arms went around me, “Take care, coffee guy.”
His grip on me tightened, “I should be telling you that Ash, he’s dangerous.”
I sighed, “You think I don’t know that? I am careful, but I don’t think he means to harm me, I mean, if he wanted to he would have done so already.”
Rustin looked at me doubtfully and took my hand, “We could run Ash, far away where he’ll never find us.” He said.
Now if he’d made that offer before I’d somehow ended up being courted by Alexander I would have jumped at it but now… I didn’t understand it myself, but I really wanted to go with Alexander, wherever he might take me. It was the bond again, wasn’t it? “I can’t, Rustin, not now. Besides, I doubt he’ll just let me go.” I told him apologetically. And then I realised, the crush I’d had on him, was gone.
Rustin sighed, obviously saddened by me rejection, “I understand.” Our eyes met for one last time before he said, “Goodbye, Ash.”
“Goodbye coffee guy.”
My friends left to go establish themselves in the new country with one last wave and then they were gone. Feeling a bit depressed I walked over to where Alexander was busy talking to a male and female noble. His arm went around my shoulders immediately when I was close enough and he watched me measuredly, “You alright?”
I nodded, “I’m fine.”
“Ashira, this is Nicolas and Faith.” Alexander introduced me to each of them.
I nodded in greeting, “Hello.” I frowned when I thought about Nicolas, his name sounded familiar, “Nicolas…” I trailed off and a light went up in my head, “You are the one who found me, aren’t you?”
He smiled, “How good of you to remember, yes, that was me.”
“Thanks for that.” I said sincerely, “I would have been dead if it wasn’t for you.”
“No problem.” He said nonchalantly.
“Well,” Alexander said after a moment’s silence, “we should get going. We have a long journey ahead of us.”
“Take care, Alex.” Faith said.
“Don’t get yourself killed.” Nicolas said with a wink and a smirk, like it was some inside joke they were all sharing.
Alexander laughed, “I won’t.”
I barely managed to get out a short, “Bye.” Before he steered me away from them and we headed another direction. “Where are we going?” I asked him curiously when we didn’t slow down.
“I have to check on something before we leave.” He said and suddenly came to an abrupt stop and turned to look at me. “Why did you let that bastard hug you but you run away each time I get too close.”
It took a moment for my slow mind to proses what he’d said and to realise he was once again talking about Rustin, “It’s different when you get close to me.” I admitted, “I think I lose control too, so I try to avoid it.” I blushed a bit, I mean, I practically just admitted he makes me crazy.
“Oh really?” he asked, his cocky smirk suddenly making it’s reappearance.
I mirrored his evil grin, “You were jealous just now weren’t you?” I asked him and his grin vanished.
He stubbornly crossed his arms over his chest, “I was not jealous of that twerp.”
I gave a casual little shrug, “Whatever you say, but just so you know, I think you’re super hot when you’re jealous too.”
And then I marched off into a general direction to avoid having to face him again anytime too soon for my liking.
I wasn’t completely sure where exactly I was, but I liked the locals a lot. They were actually out and about and not hiding away in their homes. It was amazing.
I hadn’t seen Alexander in a few hours –since I’d run off- but I was sure he would find me again when he wanted to.
I’d spent those hours roaming every little shop I could find and regretting what I’d said to him. What had I been thinking when those words had left my mouth? The answer was simple, I hadn’t been thinking. What was I, stupid? Yes, I would have to throw myself in that category.
As it turned out, we were in South Africa and it wasn’t really a desert. It was hot, sure, but not so hot you turned into a baked potato the moment you stepped into the sun. There were trees everywhere so there was enough shade and I realised I’d been worried about my delicate skin for nothing.
One of the local girls came right up to me and tugged at my shirt, “Hmmm?” I asked as I turned around to look at the small girl who looked to be about seven years old. “Hello.”
She stared up at me with large dark brown eyes, “Mr Alex wants me to tell you that he said it is time to go now.”
My mouth dropped open and I crouched down next to her, “And where exactly is this ‘Mr Alex’ you are talking about?” I asked her kindly.
She pointed, “Over there, but let me take you to him.” She snatched my hand and before I could protest she was dragging me along.
She dragged me all the way to right in front of Alexander where he was sitting under a big shade tree and talking to one of the men. The girl let go of my hand and she walked right up to Alexander, absolutely fearless, “I brought the girl you wanted Mr Alex.” She said in her cute kid like voice.
Alexander looked up and smiled at her before his eyes wandered over to me where they lingered and then turned back to the girl, “Thank you, Kabelo.” He said goodbye to the man he’d been talking to and stood up and walked over to me. “Enjoying it here?”
I couldn’t help but smile, “Actually, yeah, I really like it here.”
He grinned, “I’m glad to hear that, now I-“
He was cut off by the girl impatiently clearing her throat, “I don’t do favours Mr Alex.” She said threateningly and I stared at her in surprise.
Alexander sighed helplessly, “I suppose it can’t be helped. I’ll be right back Ashira.”
Before I could say anything more Alexander had scooped the girl up in his arms and then they were gone. I stared at the empty space in front of me for a moment before I awkwardly looked around. Did he just… run away with her?
I sat down on the bench where Alexander had previously been sitting and feeling bored stared up at the branches swaying in the wind.
I closed my eyes for a mere moment of rest when suddenly the girl’s laughter right next to me caused me to jolt in shock. “What the!” I exclaimed.
“We’re back!” she said happily as she jumped out of Alexander’s arms with a huge smile on her face. “Thanks Mr Alex! Good bye Mr Alex and Mr Alex’s girlfriend!” then she ran off with all the speed of youth. I didn’t even have time to tell her we weren’t dating.
Alexander smiled after her, “Good kid.” He said.
I nodded, “Very… cheery.” I hesitated before I continued, “So why does she like you so much?”
Alexander put a hand over his heart in mock shock, “Are you saying I am not a likeable person?”
I rolled my eyes, “Very funny. You know what I mean Alexander.”
He grinned, “I do know what you mean. Unlike other vampires I choose to know my people, and that girl is one of my people. If you hadn’t ran off you would have seen that that is how all humans treat me here.”
I blushed when I thought about what I’d said and the reason I’d run off, “Oh, sorry about that.”
Suddenly he was very close to me, “Say it again.” He ordered intensely with bright eyes, “Please?”
I frowned in confusion, “What exactly do I have to say again?”
He rolled his eyes, “You know… that thing you said earlier…” no bells went off in my head, “What you said before you ran off.”
Realisation hit me and I looked away with blood red cheeks, “No, I won’t, you can’t make me!”
“Ashira.” He cooed while cupping my face in his hands and forcing me to look at him, “Please? For me?”
I frowned, “For whom else am I going to say it?”
“Ashira!” He moaned.
I hesitated, “Fine.” I stared intently at a spot of green grass, “I think you’re kind of hot when you’re jealous.”
“This time look at me when you say it.”
My eyes moved to his feet, “I think you’re hot.”
“Now look my in the eyes and say it.”
I prepared to glare at him but the moment my eyes met his I was lost, “You’re freaking hot.”
Alexander smiled happily, “Thanks Ashira.”
I stared at him disbelievingly, “Really?” I asked heatedly, “That’s all you have to say?”
He grinned and looked at his watch less wrist, “Well would you look at the time! I think we should get going.”
I opened my mouth to start throwing insults around but was cut off when he picked me up like I weighed no more than a feather. I let out a little yelp of surprise and instinctively threw my arms around his neck. “What are you doing?!” I asked him, absolutely horrified.
He held me in front of him and wrapped my legs around him, basically forcing me to straddle him. I held onto him like a little monkey, “We’ll be using a means of travel a bit faster than what you’re used to and I’d prefer it if you didn’t get whiplash.” He told me thoughtfully.
My legs tightened around him and I looked at him, feeling my panic rising, “What? What are you talking about? Are you going to be running? I can’t handle this! I can’t do this!”
“Calm yourself, Ashira. You’ll be fine.” He gripped my thighs tighter, “I’ve got you.”
Whatever I had been about to protest flew out my ears because suddenly I was very distracted by our proximity. “Oh…I-I…” I sighed and tried to concentrate on anything other than how crazy his touch was making me, “Fine, but if I die, I will haunt you for the rest of eternity.”
Alexander looked thoughtful, “I kind of like the sound of that…” When he saw my horrified expression he laughed, “Don’t worry, I won’t let you die. Now,” he said while pulling me tightly against him and pressing my head into the crane of his neck, “Keep your head there if you don’t want to lose it.”
I hung onto him for dear life, “Please don’t drop me.”
“Never.” He whispered to me softly.
Then the world was a blur and I shut my eyes to keep myself from passing out.