The Female

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Chapter 42 - Report

CHARLOTTE

“Do you know when Gray’s going to be done with his meeting?” I ask for what feels like the hundredth time as I tilt my head in Rock’s direction.

Rock doesn’t even spare me a glance as he flips the page in his book and shrugs. His lips purse as I continue to stare, and I see what I assume to be his fingers twitching underneath his hazy figure.

He’s annoyed by me.

“Stop staring at me, Charlotte.” He murmurs when I don’t let up. “I’m not Gray’s keeper. If you want to know his schedule, you should ask him for it in advance.”

I narrow my eyes in defiance before giving in and returning my gaze to my desk. The plate of food Gray set on it before rushing off sits untouched, and I use my fork to move the contents around aimlessly. I suppose he’s got a point.

I’ve never really thought or cared much for Gray’s schedule before, but now that he’s insisting I hang around Rock whenever he has to step away, I’m more interested than ever.

He only had time to hastily explain that he doesn’t trust Shay and is trying to keep me safe when he woke me up and dragged me out of bed this morning. I didn’t even get a warning that I was going to have a babysitter, and I don’t understand why I couldn’t just stay in my room instead.

My eyes are still puffy from my late-night crying, but I’d like to wait until they’re back to normal before moving around the house. Last night was a moment of weakness, and I don’t want Aziel or Shay to think their presence has any effect on me.

I don’t care about either of them, and I hope they know that.

I’ve already decided I’m going to live in intentional blissful ignorance and pretend last night’s adventures with Gray and Aziel never happened. I didn’t watch Aziel try to fuck a carbon copy of me, and I sure as hell didn’t let Gray touch me in front of him.

It simply didn’t happen.

Tightening my grip on my fork, I poke around the plate and stab into the food that’s unfamiliar to me. It seems as if somebody’s decided the Shadows were to make a Demon food this morning instead of the Human ones they’ve been opting for recently.

“I’m going to wait in Gray’s office.” I state with a loud, dramatic sigh.

Standing, I grab my plate and hurry out of my office. Gray will be annoyed if I don’t eat all my food, and I scarf down a couple of bites as I glance down the hallway toward Aziel’s door. Gray didn’t tell me what the urgent meeting was about, but I’m willing to bet all three of them are in there right now.

My lips purse in fear that they’re discussing me, but with a shake of my head, I push that thought away and turn back to Gray’s door. Even if they are, there’s nothing I can do about it.

Rock hums, but doesn’t try to deter me as he stands and follows me across the hall. He continues reading his book as he finds his way to the couch in the corner of the room and plops down on it. I’m sure it’s not exactly fun being woken up at the crack of dawn to babysit me, and Rock’s making his displeasure of it quite clear.

Sucking in my cheeks, I wander around Gray’s room looking at all his knickknacks before sitting in the chair behind his desk. I don’t usually come in here without him, but his meeting is now in its third hour and I’m bored.

I fish my translator out of my pocket before getting to work snooping through the papers on Gray’s desk. He always leaves it so messy, and I’ve just been dying for the opportunity to organize it. How he gets anything done is beyond me.

Rock snorts and shakes his head from his place on the couch, and I turn to look at him with a playful glare.

“Something I can help you with?” I snap.

He makes a show of shutting his book and setting it in his lap.

“I just didn’t realize how much of a snoop you are.” He retorts.

I gasp, offended.

“I’m not snooping. I’m organizing.” I’m quick to defend. “Besides, don’t act like you haven’t taken a peek at their things every now and again.”

Despite not being able to see his face, I can just tell he’s scowling. Rock’s truly in a mood this morning.

“No. I have self-restraint unlike you. Besides, if you get caught going through Gray’s things, he’ll probably just get you off before shoving more food down your throat. The help doesn’t get the same, easy treatment.” Rock snorts before tilting his head back and running his thumb across his throat for emphasis.

I shrug. I’m sure Gray wouldn’t kill somebody just for going through his things. That’s dramatic, even for him.

Holding in a smirk, I level my gaze with Rock and lean back in Gray’s chair.

“Somebody sounds jealous.” I tease.

“Excuse me?”

“If you want Gray to touch your penis, I’m sure he’ll be more than happy to oblige. If you’d like, I can even put in a good word for you.” I continue, laughing as Rock splutters and fumbles to grab his book.

I’m willing to bet his face would be beet red if he were a human. I raise my eyebrows in victory as Rock turns away and pretends to be so entranced by his book that he can’t even hear me.

As I begin translating the titles of the papers on Gray’s desk, I can’t help but wonder if a part of what I’ve said is true. I’ve gathered by now that most everybody, Demons and other breeds alike, seem to be attracted to the Incubi. I’ve also gathered that the Incubi have no issues fulfilling those desires.

Has Gray ever fed off of Rock, or any of the other Shadows in the house? I’ve never really thought of it before, but I hope he hasn’t. I know sex and intimacy are literally a necessity of survival for him, but it would be nice to not constantly be surrounded by people who’ve touched his dick.

“Have you and Gray ever?” I ask, hesitating and trailing off at the end.

Rock shakes his head.

“An Incubi of his status would never feed off a Shadow. We can’t give him enough for a satisfying feed so it’d be pointless for him.” He explains, before sighing and setting down his book. “It isn’t my place to comment on this, but I know our customs are new to you and I would feel responsible if I didn’t educate you and you said this to another.”

Rock pauses and clears his throat, clearly uncomfortable.

“I’m sure you know Incubi are sought after, especially to the lower breeds like me. Giving them away for a feeding is a gift Demons often give. I respect you enough to treat your offer as the joke I know you intended it to be, but most won’t, and it’d be seen as incredibly offensive for either you or Gray to turn back on your word.” He rushes to spit out.

I grimace and look away in embarrassment. I had no idea.

“Gray’s got enough weight with Aziel and Silas backing him that I’m sure he could get out of a promise without too much backlash, but it would still reflect poorly on him.” Rock continues, each word that slips from his lips only furthering my humiliation.

The silence in the room is deafening as he returns to his book and I pick up the translator back up, both of us pretending like this conversation never happened. My intentions were never to truly offer Gray up, and I’m thankful Rock knew it was only a lighthearted joke.

Gray would kill me if I offered him up like a show-pony and got him stuck in that position.

I glance at the clock with a quiet sigh before returning to Gray’s papers. What are they meeting about that’s so important it takes hours to talk through? Maybe Aziel is trying to convince them to send me back to the auction house. The thought alone sends shivers down my spine.

I trust that Gray wouldn’t let them do that to me, though.

My spirits lift as I continue stacking and organizing Gray’s messy desk, the hardwood surface slowly coming into view. Either he’s going to be happy I’ve taken the time to do this or annoyed I messed with his stuff, but that’s a bridge I’ll cross when I come to it.

I bend and pull open the drawers beneath his desk so I can look over the folders within them. My need to type everything into the translator slows me down considerably, but thankfully he only labeled things with a word or two so it doesn’t take too long. It’s the actual papers that take forever.

My eyebrows raise as the translator comes back with the word FEMALES, and I glance at Rock to make sure he isn’t looking before pulling the file out and dropping it on the desk. I do my best to remain stealthy as I pull out the papers and begin to translate the headlines.

Gray’s been avoiding talking to me about it, and I haven’t pushed too hard in the hopes that he’d take the initiative to share with me himself, but this is too perfect of an opportunity to pass up.

The headlines line up pretty closely with what Silas told me the other day, and I let out a sigh of relief before continuing to flip through the stack. There are some charts and lists that take me little to no time to translate, each one raising my spirits.

I don’t quite understand all the science, but from what I’m understanding, these odds don’t look too bad for most of the breeds. Some will still go extinct, but if we take action now most will see a full recovery.

I’m practically bouncing in my seat as I resist the urge to squeal. I’ll have to see if Gray can read this to me later so I can hear all the intricate details. I’m sure I’m missing a ton by only getting the headlines.

My lips curl into a grin as I continue my way through the stack. There’s an extensive timeline laid out across two pages near the middle, and I place them next to one another so I can view it in its entirety. My lips twitch as I try to make sense of it.

These dates are all in the past. I groan and type them into the translator for clarification, confused when they come out confirming my initial assumption.

“Rock?”

He hums, and seconds later I hear the hushed rustle of fabric as he approaches and moves to stand by my side.

“What are these dates?” I ask, assuming they label them differently than Humans.

Rock leans over and glances at the paper. He sucks on his teeth before going into teacher mode and pointing to the first item on the timeline.

“This is going to be the day, this is going to be the month, and this is going to be the year.” He states, sliding his finger to each set of numbers.

I’m stunned, and hardly listen as he goes on to explain all the months in the Demonic realm and the differences in the way Humans view time and yearly calendars. I don’t understand how these dates are so far in the past. Why would somebody create a report and give timelines for something that’s already happened?

I swallow my spit before grabbing hold of all the pages I’ve already looked through and flip them over so I’m viewing the very front page of the report. Rock continues his one-sided conversation as I scan the sheet for a date.

There’s absolutely no way they’ve been sitting on this information. They’d never do that. Even Aziel, who’s a complete dick in every way, shape, and form, wouldn’t do that. There’s no way.

They need females to survive. Every breed does.

I blink and shake my head as I find the date of the report listed on the backside of the first page. I type it into the translator to be sure. They’ve had this information for fifty-four years.

Rock goes silent and begins to flip through the pages himself as he catches sight of what exactly it is I’m looking at.

“What the fuck?” He whispers, his voice hushed and full of shock. “I knew they had some information on the females, but I had no idea it was this comprehensive.”

At least I’m not the only one who’s been left in the dark.

Rock reads aloud at my request, his words barely audible as he does his best to keep his voice quiet. I wring my hands together underneath the table as I listen intently to the information he shares, my heart plummeting with each ominously written warning of danger and extinction.

The only warning I have that Gray’s coming back is the sudden gust of wind against my side as Rock hurries back to his spot on the couch. He gives me a sharp glance before leaning back and opening his book in front of his face so it blocks his view of me.

Gray busts into his office with a grin so wide that his eyes are practically closed.

He turns toward Rock with a nod, his gaze moving briefly to the book he holds before making an offhand comment about the contents of it. Rock grumbles, his angry-at-being-woken-up-and-forced-to-babysit attitude back on as he stands and leaves the room. Gray laughs and thanks him for his time before sliding his attention to me.

“So sorry! That went on a lot longer than I expected.” He apologizes. “Want to go get some lunch?”

I remain still, frowning. Gray cocks his head to the side, his eyebrows furrowing in confusion as he tries to figure out why I’m so angry. He blinks and steps forward so he can see what it is I have laid out on his desk, his black eyes narrowing at the report.

He visibly gulps as he levels his stare with mine once more, a nervous expression I’m unused to seeing spreading across his face.

“Charlie, I ca-” He starts, stopping as I hold up my hand to shut him up.

I point to the chair opposite his desk.

“Sit down.” I order.

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Charlie’s about to whoop some Demon ass

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