Chapter 8, in which the plot thickens….. 😀
An Undead Christmas Carol. J R Manawa.
You can’t handle your lingering human emotions
The Vampire watched her go. She didn’t turn back again. As he mulled over the thoughts in his head, he chewed his lip. He wasn’t quite sure at what point it had happened, but the girl had managed to take control of the conversation and she’d maintained it right to the point of choosing the goodbye. It was a small, almost insignificant battle that had taken place, but it was a loss he had never fallen prey to before. He was sure she’d lied about meeting a friend, but it didn’t matter. The point was that she had efficiently commandeered the conversation and he didn’t know what to think of it, mostly because he was sure she didn’t do it to string him along like all the games that girls played, she’d simply decided there was nothing left to say, and had ended it.
He rubbed his arms. They were cold, but he didn’t feel it. He watched until she’d disappeared around the corner at the end of the street, then he turned and walked back.
“I saw all that,” Levi announced as Caleb walked in the door. The room was dark, but the vampire boy was standing in the glow of the lights that shone in through the glass wall that looked out over all of London.
“I’m sure you did,” Caleb flicked on the light and the television too. He sat down. The television always irritated him because he ended up watching the colours change as the electric charges pulsed through the individual pixels of liquid crystal, fascinated by the infinitesimal flashes instead of the actual picture on the screen, but it did have an advantage in that it was a mindless, thoughtless amusement to occupy him.
“You forgot to act human.” Levi said. “You actually forgot to breathe at one point.”
“Did I?” Caleb relaxed into the chair. “I invited her to Paris,” he added.
Just as Caleb had expected, Levi’s face contorted a little, and then he erupted.
“I invited her to Paris,”
“To the Coven Summit?”
Caleb nodded, “Yes,”
“How? You haven’t even succeeded in winning her attentions, let alone charming her.”
Caleb relayed the conversation for Levi’s benefit, and for his own amusement.
“A ‘family gathering’! You told her it was a family gathering? Are you insane?”
“Just a bit, little brother, just a bit. And anyway, I believe I am slowly making headway with her.”
“You are actually going to take a human that is not under your control to the coven summit?”
“Yes, I think I am,” he said, though his voice suggested he was a little more convinced than just thinking about it.
“If she makes a scene, you could get us both killed, did you consider that?”
“Relax brother. She won’t get the chance to make a scene.”
Levi fell silent, and turned to playing with his lip in much the same way Caleb did when he was thinking.
Caleb turned back to the television screen.
“Are you absolutely sure you want to kill her?” Levi asked, in a softer, more child-like voice, as he walked away from the window and over to the opposite end of the couch from Caleb, he lithely moved his body to the arm of the chair, so he could turn and stare directly at Caleb.
Caleb nodded, not turning from the screen.
“Why wouldn’t I?”
“She’s not your type.” Levi told him, also staring at the screen now.
Caleb turned to him. “What do you mean? She’s a bit of an outcast but she wants to be ‘cool’, she’s a bit of a loner but she wants to be loved, she tries to be happy but she’s really quite sad. She thinks she doesn’t fit the mould, but she’s actually just like the rest of them – depressed and miserable and definitely attracted to me.”
“How arrogant of you,” Levi replied, refusing to make eye contact now.
“Why little brother, you are just jealous that you are stuck in the body of a child.”
Levi had had enough. He stood up and ran his fingers through his curly blond hair. “One hundred or even ten years ago, I would have tried to kill you for saying something like that. But I’ve learned that’s what you want, brother mine. You want something to take your mind off your own pain. I’m not going to give you what you want. I’m going to go out and hunt alone instead.” Levi picked up his coat from the coffee table, and pulled it on as he walked to the door. He turned the handle and pulled the door ajar before he looked over at Caleb and made his parting comment, “And I don’t think you want to kill her, I think she’s made you curious, and you are going to kill her because you can’t handle it. You can’t handle life, and you can’t handle your lingering human emotions.”
Caleb growled. The door shut.
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