Vincent stood waiting for Zavier to return. “What was that about?” he asked as he reappeared in the room.
“Just taking care of some last minute business,” he smiled. “So it’s done then?”
Vincent nodded. “I’ve started, though I’m not sure how effective it will be.”
“I have no doubt you handled the task as needed.” He walked over and grabbed a skull and tossed it at Vincent’s feet.
“Zoe tries to hide from me. I need you to put that in the room where I can’t see her.”
Vincent picked up the object and examined it. He nodded, “I’ll take care of it.” He walked closer to Zavier, “You know, I want this to work, I want Zo. But if you ever threaten Vanessa again, I’ll let her know what’s going on and watch as she rips your heart out. Stay the fuck away from my little girl our business is just between us. You know my weakness but remember I know yours too!”
“Whoa! There’s the Vincent I remember! Welcome back Brother!” he said putting his hands up. “Your daughter is safe. I’d never hurt her, I was just trying to get your attention. You were stuck in some sappy, love-crazed stupor and it was very unbecoming a vampire with your talent! You and I, we take what we want and little Vanessa, I look forward to seeing if she takes after you. But it looks like my words were well received and the fire is lit under your ass!”
He turned to leave, “Vincent wait,” Zavier called to him. He walked closer and touched his temple, “A gift.”
“She was here?”
Zavier nodded. “She’s fine as you can see. I figured it had been a while since you saw her. Stay focused Vincent, she’ll be yours.”
Vincent got to the park and tried entering into the magic room. He was able to pass the threshold, but the skull was blocked. Shit, he thought quickly and pulled out his cell phone to call Zo. No answer.
He walked to his car and drove over to Drake’s, knocked on the door and waited.
I saw him with his back to the glass and let him inside.
“Hey Vincent,” I smiled. “You look tired! Is Nessa keeping you busy?”
“No. No, she’s great. She’s hyper which I know she got from Sarah, but she sleeps like she should.” He walked closer and smelled me.
“Did you just…?”
“Is that vanilla?”
“Yeah, I just washed my hair. Why did you do that?”
“I’m sorry, I got a hint of something when you…sorry.” He looked around the house, “Is Drake not home?”
“No, he went out for more equipment. He’s been doing something in the garage. You came to talk to him? Curious!”
“I’d never come here for Drake. I actually need your help. I tried calling you but…”
“My phone is upstairs. I wasn’t ignoring you. What did you need?”
“A protection spell for Vanessa.”
“Is she ok? Has…has Zavier?”
“She’s fine. I just want to ensure she’ll remain that way,” he offered a smile though he was being fraud. It hurt him to deceive her, but not enough to stop him; besides Zavier may come after her though he gave his word.
“Of course I’ll help! I don’t have anything here; can you take me to the magic room?”
“After you,” he smiled.
I started down the stairs to the room and Vincent followed closely. He stopped just in the door frame and called for me.
“I can’t get in there,” he said demonstrating the block.
“What is that? You could enter before.”
He shrugged. “I guess the room can read my thoughts about you,” he smirked. “You’re trying to protect yourself from me!”
“Well at least I’m safe in that case. I’ll grab the stuff.”
“Wait! Can I not come in? You don’t trust me anymore? I promise to keep my hands to myself!”
I giggled. “Fine!” I released the protection shield temporarily and let him inside.
We walked towards the supply table. “It’ll just take a second.”
Vincent wandered off towards the corner as I prepared the ingredients.
“So do you actually use all of this stuff or is a lot of it decorative?” he asked placing the skull underneath a table out of view.
“Decorative? Yeah right. I haven’t used a lot of it, Drake bought most when he first set up the room for me, but I’ve used enough of it.”
I walked towards the cauldron.
“Good job, Vincent,” Zavier praised as he watched the scene unfold. “Now let’s see what she’s been up to.”
I completed the spell ensuring little Vanessa would be safe from Zavier and cleaned up.
Vincent walked up behind me and took me in his arms. “I thought you were going to keep your hands to yourself,” I said backing up.
“That’s never a promise I can keep, Zo.”
I tried to sidestep him but he blocked me. “I’ve missed you. You look great,” he stroked my cheek.
“You’ve been avoiding me Vincent, I’ve been here. Just because I’m married doesn’t mean you and I can’t still be friends.”
“Zo, I want that friendship still, I want more It’s just really hard seeing you and knowing it’ll never happen.”
I turned to walk towards the door; he pulled me into a kiss. His body tightened against me. “Mmm, your lips are sweet. I missed them more.”
“Vincent!” I pushed him off. “You know if you are going to keep this up, it would be best if you kept avoiding me. I won’t leave Drake nor will I allow you to make advances towards me.”
“That’s all I wanted to know. Your thoughts are betraying you Zo. You can’t block me like you used to.”
“Take me home Vincent.”
He dropped me off and I hurried inside.
Vincent headed to see Zavier again.
“You lied to her Vincent!” he grinned.
“I had to; it was the only way to get that skull in the room. So you can see her now?”
“Yes! Great job. My only concern now is to figure out what she’s done in there. I know she’s been plotting.”
Vincent wasn’t paying him any attention, he was too wrapped up in what he’d read off of Zo.
“She wants you,” Zavier said noticing his distant stare. “We have to stay on track, but she’s as good as yours.”
“What do you get out of this Zavier? Why are you so interested in her?”
“She has a supply of magic unheard of. Having her under my control would be the end of long nights hunting for other small covens or broods. She could create whatever I wanted, unassisted.”
“Under your control? What like those half dead zombies you have now? Fuck that, Zavier.”
“No, Brother. I promised you no harm would come her way. I simply mean that with your influence, she’ll be less resistant. See Drake won’t let her meet her full potential because of what? A nose bleed? He is stifling the true witch in her. Can you imagine what kind of power lies within that source?”
“Let’s get the next step underway. I’m tired of waiting and there is no way in hell I’m going 600 years without her. I’d bleed Drake out myself in that case.”
“The next has already begun, though I love your enthusiasm. Let that desire fuel you.”
“And Drake is still safe?”
“I won’t hurt him. I told you, there’s no need for that. That’s not what I am after.”
“Good, I don’t think Zo would recover from that loss. Vincent turned to leave. “Call me when you need more. I have to get back to my daughter; I’m sure Sarah’s ready to meet her human.”
“Hey,” Drake said walking into the kitchen with me. “Was that Vincent I saw dropping you off?”
“Yes baby,” he needed a favor.
“Is there something wrong with the Audi? What did he want?” his eyes were expectant as he waited for my answer.
“The car is fine; I just didn’t think there was a need for two vehicles. He drove me to the park. He’d asked me to cast a protection on Vanessa because he was worried Zavier would try something.”
“Zavier? He specifically said that?”
“Why would that be a concern?”
“Because Zavier is an evil, ruthless monster who’d kill his own mother if she had what he wanted.”
I kissed him.”Don’t start anything you aren’t prepared to finish,” he said smiling. I pushed my body into his.
“Who said I wouldn’t?”
He gripped my waist and carried me upstairs.
Sarah again found Vincent in a darkened room. “You really should get out more.”
“I’ve been out, Sarah,” he said. “How’s your human boy toy? Have you told him what you are? Or do you compel him and feed on him without his knowledge?”
“You’re sick, Vincent,” she scooped Vanessa up and walked out.
He smiled sinisterly as she left.
He lay on the bed contemplating his next move. It felt good getting back to his roots. Zo will be mine. He beamed at the thought.
“How long do you think it takes before there’s a child in there?” Drake asked tracing his finger on my stomach.
“It varies, baby. And I have absolutely no idea how it works for vampires.” I pulled him up from my chest and snuggled on his.
“I want to have your child, Drake. I know you’ll be an incredible father.
He kissed me. “Soon,” he said.
His phone vibrated on the table next to him. He grabbed it to answer. “Hey Lily.”
…“Can you meet me? It’s important we speak…”
“Of course! I’ll be right there!”
He stood and got dressed. “Lily needs me, I’ll be back soon.”
He turned and exited the bedroom and drove over to Lily’s penthouse. Without knocking, he made his way inside.
“Hey Drake, have a seat,” she said exiting the kitchen. “Do you want anything?”
He waved her off. “Are you ok? You said it was important.”
“I’m fine. It’s about Zavier.”
Drake rolled his eyes. Zavier, there was never anything good with that name. “What’s he done? Has he come after you?”
“He has. He was invisible though. It’s been a while since I last saw him though. I’ve been maintaining distance. I want nothing to do with that bastard that doesn’t involve his death.”
“How do you know he isn’t here if he was invisible before?”
She pointed to a talisman on the table. “I can see him when he comes; I got that from a Shaman. It’s quite handy for spirits and other unwanted elements; wards them off.”
“So what did you want to tell me about him?”
“I think he has someone coming after you.”
She shrugged. “I just get the feeling. He sees you as a threat, you have what he wants and he will stop at nothing until he gets his way. That’s how he is; he turned me as proof of that. I just wanted to tell you to watch your back. There’s no telling when he’ll strike. Take this,” she said handing him a similar talisman. “Wear it always. Then you’ll know when he’s around.”
He took the charm and placed it on. “Thanks Lily. Have you heard anything from the Syndicate indicating what they can do against him?”
“Nothing. I don’t know if they are even looking anymore. They may have just deemed it a lost cause and gave up, sort of like the Savage twins.”
They talked a little longer. Drake was hoping to learn more about the man he’d made a promise to some 200 years ago.
The next morning, Sarah, Vanessa and I arrived at the mall and I dragged her to the lingerie store. We browsed the selection of teddies, nighties, babydoll tees and lace panty/bra sets.
“So what exactly are we looking for, Zoe? I thought you and Drake’s love life was fine. At least when I stayed with you, it sounded healthy; active. Hell, it was one of the reasons I kept running off to Vincent.”
“You could hear us?”
She nodded. “Almost every night; I started coming home later just to avoid it.”
My face felt flushed. “Sorry about that, Sarah.”
“It’s fine. I’m glad that after all this time he still finds you irresistible.”
I smiled. “Sex with Drake is amazing. He really is a great lover. But the amount…ever since he found out that vampires can have kids he’s been determined to produce a child with me. I want to give that to him, I’m just scared I guess.”
“Well from the way it sounds, you don’t need any lingerie for him. He’s taking care of you regularly.”
“True, but I wanted to find something nice for him anyway. We didn’t have a honeymoon, so anything that I can do that would be romantic, I’m going for. Why don’t you find something for Brad? I’m sure he’d appreciate the gesture as well.”
“Brad,” Sarah smiled. “We haven’t actually gone that far yet. We’re still kind of in the ‘getting to know you’ phase, you know? He is wonderful and Vanessa enjoys his company too. I just want to pace myself this time, or get some really strong condoms,” she laughed.
I found a gorgeous black and wine corset and matching garter and brought it to the register.
“Your husband will definitely thank you for this,” the cashier said as she rang me up.
“Thank you,” I smiled.
I grabbed the bags and we headed further into the mall to the children’s store. Vanessa was growing really quickly and Sarah was hoping to find her some newer outfits.
We spent the better part of the afternoon shopping before parting ways.
When I arrived home, I found Drake in the garage moving things around.
“Hey,” I said planting a kiss on his cheek. “What are you doing?”
“I don’t know. Just messing around I guess. I was trying to keep busy until you came back,” he smiled. “What’s in the bag?” he asked trying to peek.
“None of your business, you’ll know when I want you to.”
“Zoe, I’ve been thinking, maybe we should look for a new place. This one is kind of cramped.”
“Are you serious? I’ve fallen in love with this place.”
“Two bedrooms with one converted into a den? I want room for our family. At least give it some thought before you answer.”
“It’s fine Drake, I understand. Room to spread and grow would be nice.”
He pulled me into his arms and kissed me. “Are you hungry? Or did you and Sarah grab a bite?”
My stomach growled fiercely. “Nevermind; come on, let’s go find some dinner.”
Later that night, Drake came running into the house. “Zoe?!” I found it!”
“Found what?” the smile on his face broadened.
“The perfect house!”
“What? I thought we were going to look together and discuss it first?”
“Don’t say no until you see it!” he practically dragged me out of the door and to the car.
We pulled up to a large two-story home. The outside had a privacy gate, wraparound drive, two car garage and well manicured grounds.
“Drake this is too much!” I couldn’t imagine what was inside.
“To be honest I had an ulterior motive. Besides making room for a future with you, the skull in the living room; I’d been digging under the area in the living room to try and get it to sink but that’s not working. Since you can’t touch it without being electrocuted or cast source magic around it without Zavier finding out…”
“Your solution was a whole new house?! Drake that’s crazy! What is wrong with you? You’ve been acting so very odd lately! How can you jump from a demonic relic in the living room to buying a freaking mansion!?”
“We can talk about it later. Would you like a tour?”
“Talk about what?”
He ignored my question. “Drake? Talk about what?”
“Let’s get inside.
I stopped in the door refusing to move further until he explained exactly what was going on.
“Answers Drake! Now!”
He sighed. “Lily thinks someone has been sent to kill me. She just gets the feeling from Zavier since the last time she saw him.”
“Last time she saw him? How often are they together? And why would she think you’re in danger? He’s been after me for the most part.”
“And that’s why. She thinks he’ll try and get rid of me to get to you. She gave me this,” he said pointing to the talisman. “He’s been after her since your potion of invisibility; he can get to her unseen. This allows her and now me to see him.”
Drake took my hand and walked me into the living room.
“You’re here aren’t you?” Lily said feeling the disruption in the air around her.”
“Lilith,” Zavier said approaching her, his form corporealized and he smiled, “We need to talk.”