I’m left with Claudia who gets up and sits next to me as Darrius and Johnathan leave to talk to the vampire King, their father.
“What sort of threats would there be against the palace?” I ask her, continuing to eat my food even though I have a little bit of a lost appetite. She smiles sympathetically and puts an elbow on the table, her chin resting in her hand.
“I think they would have to be empty threats at this stage,” she advises, “People would hear about you here at the palace but they wouldn’t know what you looked like or anything about you. Or how powerful you are, unless they understand the prophecy fully. But no one does,” I nod and take a swig of orange juice and I see her smile change into a scowl as she looks past me. I look over my shoulder and see a familiar looking vampire. I see the flash of red-gold hair and piercing grey eyes bore into my own.
“Maximus,” she hisses under her breath as he gets closer. A waitress walks past him and he steals a wine-glass of blood from her before continuing on his way here. I look to Claudia to see her glaring at his approach.
“Hello, Claudia,” He rumbles, his voice deep and sexy as he slides into a chair facing us on the other side of the table, “Jennifer, darling,” he nods at me and I can’t help it… I blush. And immediately feel guilty. He grins.
“You’re not welcome here,” Claudia snaps, “We’re having a private conversation. You’re not invited.”
“Well,” he says, giving her a dangerous look, “I’ll be honest I didn’t come here for you. I came for Jennifer. There is so much happening now that she’s arrived. I wanted to get to know her better.”
“Do you know what the threats to the palace are?” I ask him.
“The werewolves want to meet you,” he says, “To see if you are the real deal. They are threatening to kill royal vampire family members,” he explains, motioning behind me. I look over my shoulder and see Thomas, Darrius’ uncle sitting at a table with another older looking vampire. A woman; perhaps his wife. I turn back around.
“They just want to meet me?” I ask Maximus, “Werewolves?”
“Yes, darling. Now that I’ve told you something I know,” he drawls, leaning closer to me, “Why don’t you tell me a bit about yourself. Can you really resist vampire compulsion?” He leans in a little closer, staring at me harder, “Kiss me,” he whispers.
“Piss off,” Claudia snaps and kicks him under the table. He gives her an annoyed glance and I lean back in my chair, glaring at him.
“What the hell? I’m not going to kiss you,” I say, taking in his assessing look my way.
“That proves you can resist vampire compulsion and pheromones,” he leans back in his chair, ignoring Claudia and giving me a thoughtful look, “Now for the important question…”
“I don’t really know if I want to talk to you anymore,” I snap. He raises a brow questioningly.
“Just one more question and I’ll leave you alone, I promise,” he says with a smirk. I see Claudia roll her eyes and I sigh.
“Fine, what is it?” I ask.
“Do you love Darrius?” He asks this in a very serious tone. I pause, I gape.
“I, uh…” I begin, confused. My first thought was to say yes, but I didn’t understand how that could be possible. I’d only known Darrius a couple of days, and he was a prick most of the time, “Um…t-that’s none of your business.”
“Go away, Maximus,” Claudia says, annoyed, “Jennifer hardly knows you. Leave her alone.” He shrugs and gracefully stands up.
“I got the answer I wanted,” he says, grinning slyly at me, “Thank you, Jennifer, for talking to me,” I watch with confusion as he walks away to talk to other people.
“What was that all about?” I ask Claudia, who is sipping some of her blood from her glass.
“He was interrogating you,” she said, “Deep down he is very protective of Darrius. They were turned at the same time, have been best friends for ever.”
“Oh, I see. How was Darrius turned?” I ask.
“He can tell you all about that, that is not something for me to tell,” Claudia drains the rest of her blood and licks her lips, “I think they should be back soon.”
“Okay,” I say, “I’ve had enough to eat.” I look over my shoulder just then to see Darrius and Johnathan stalk through the door. Darrius has a scowl on his face. He looks angry. Claudia notices too and sighs.
“This doesn’t look too good for you,” she says.
“Yeah, I don’t think it does,” I mutter back.