Home > Tall, Dark & Lonely (Pyte/Sentinel #1)(11)

Tall, Dark & Lonely (Pyte/Sentinel #1)(11)
Author: R.L. Mathewson

“Mrs. Buckman, if I promise to answer all of your questions later will you leave the room now? I promise to handle this properly.” Still he looked at David.

Her grandmother sighed and nodded. She trusted him to handle this situation the same as any of her other problems. “Thank you, Ephraim.”

“Come on, this is just a mistake!” David pleaded.

“Candy, I have a few questions for you and then you can leave as well, okay?” Ephraim asked.

Candy looked confused, but nodded. “Do you know this man?”

“Yes.”

“From?”

“He comes into the club most nights. He lives with Crystal and they have a baby. Why? What is going on here?”

“Where does he work?”

“A bookstore.”

“Did he go to college?”

Candy laughed. “Are you kidding? He just got his GED last month.”

David’s face turned bright red.

“What is going on here?” Candy demanded.

“Nothing. Candy, why don’t you go make sure that Joshua is ordering enough pizza, please.” She stood up and left, throwing one last look at them. “Lock the door from the inside,” Ephraim softly ordered.

He waited until he heard the door click shut before he stood up. David jumped to his feet. He grabbed the carving knife from the roast beef platter and held it up in front of him while he backed away and moved towards the locked door.

Ephraim gently took Madison’s arm and pushed her against the wall. Without hesitation he stepped in front of David. “You owe the lady an apology and an explanation.”

David licked his lips. “I’m leaving.”

“No, you’re not. You’re apologizing. Why did you lie and date her if you had a girlfriend and a baby at home?”

David looked at her and gave her a weak smile. “I’m sorry it was just a bet.”

“A bet?” she asked, stepping forward. She was going to slap him!

Ephraim took another step, placing himself directly in front of David. David held the knife up with a shaky hand. “Get that damn thing out of my face, boy.”

David shook his head. “No, you’re going to hit me!”

“Of course I am and you’re only pissing me off more with that damn knife!” Ephraim reached out and grabbed the knife by the blade, ripping it out of David’s hands and tossing it behind him and away from Madison.

Madison scrambled to pick up the knife before either man could pick it up again. She grabbed it and stepped away quickly looking at the blade, shocked by all the blood dripping down the blade.

“Now, you were telling us about a bet?” Ephraim prompted. If his hand hurt it didn’t show. He stalked forward as David retreated.

“It was stupid. She came into the bookstore a month ago and the guys and I took a bet who could nail her.” He held up his hands. “I didn’t know it would take this long! I didn’t mean to keep up this act this long. I swear it was just a bet!”

Ephraim shot a quick look back at Madison. She was crying. Ephraim fought for control as his teeth descended. “Your eyes…what’s wrong with your eyes?” David asked nervously. Ephraim turned his head before Madison could see.

“Madison, please leave,” he said in a soothing voice.

“No.” Her voice broke.

“Madison, now!” he roared. He couldn’t control it any longer. He ran his tongue over his fangs, trying to send them back, but they refused to go. His hands shook with rage and the need to tear this bastard apart.

Madison took a deep breath. She couldn’t leave, she just couldn’t. “No, I’m staying.”

“Damn it, Madison, leave now!”

“No!”

Ephraim opened his eyes and turned back to look at David. “Oh my God! What the hell is this?” He grabbed a chair and flung it at Ephraim and ran for the door.

“Where do you think you’re going?” Ephraim demanded as he moved in front of David, cutting him off. David stumbled back against the table. His entire body began to shake.

“Please, I’m so sorry…so sorry…I’ll never do anything like this again I swear!” He sobbed uncontrollably.

Ephraim grabbed David’s shirt with one hand, raising him off the ground until David was looking down at him. His arms and legs flailed wildly.

“If you ever talk to her or about her ever again I will get you. I don’t care where you are I will come for you. There is no window I can’t crawl through, no door I can’t open, no place is safe from me. I know your scent now. I can hunt you down anywhere you go. Do you believe me, David?” Ephraim asked in cold calculating voice.

“Y-yes!” he cried uncontrollably.

“Good. I’m going to let you leave now. You are not to speak of this to anyone. If I find out you spoke of me I will kill you. Do you understand?”

“Yes!” The scent of urine hit the room. Ephraim looked down at the floor and stepped back away from the pool of urine forming on the floor, taking David with him. This man was not going to talk.

“Is this real?” David asked in a high pitched voice.

Keeping his eyes locked on David, Ephraim grabbed one of David’s hands and brought it close to his face. “Stick out your finger.”

“No!”

“Do it!”

His hands shook violently as he stuck out his index finger. Ephraim brought the finger to his mouth and ran it over one of his fangs.

“Ouch!” David whimpered. The man was weak. It was no more painful than a needle prick. Several drops of blood hit Ephraim’s lip. As David pulled his hand away Ephraim licked the blood and cringed. He turned his head away from Madison and spit the blood back out.

He turned his head back. Things were different now. He had to handle this differently. “David, I don’t know how to tell you this,” he said in a much calmer voice than the emotions raging inside of him demanded.

“What?”

Ephraim placed the man down. “You need go see a doctor immediately.”

“What?” He hadn’t expected that.

“Tomorrow go see your doctor,” Ephraim said. His rage was doubling. If this son of a bitch touched Madison he would have given her a death sentence.

“What’s wrong with my blood?” David pleaded. He held his finger against his chest as if it were a life threatening wound.

“Just go see a doctor. Take your girlfriend with you to get tested and anyone else you’ve been with.”

David’s chin trembled. “You’re not going to tell me?”

“No, just go.” His body was still trembling. He prayed to god Madison didn’t do anything with this man. She was still a virgin but that didn’t mean they didn’t do other things.

“You’re letting me go?”

Ephraim turned his back on the man and faced Madison. She was hugging herself tightly and staring at him. She'd seen everything.

*******

His eyes were bright red. They were so bright. She couldn’t imagine why he would carry around red eye contacts. It didn’t make sense.

Then he turned around. This couldn’t be real. Her body screamed for her to run, but she couldn’t. She watched as Ephraim ran faster than any human she’d ever seen. She watched in horror as he picked David up with ease with only one hand. This wasn’t happening.

This was so not happening.

He looked like a vampire. They weren’t real. This was a game. Someone was playing a joke on her. This couldn’t be real. She’d watched enough movies to know the rules for vampires.

She went over the list of what she knew in her head and compared it to Ephraim. He just ate for one thing and vampires couldn’t eat food. Granted this was the first time she ever saw him eat food. He also went out in the sun. Vampires were supposed to fry in the sun. She didn’t remember the logic behind that, but she was sure it had something to do with them being dead and all.

Then there was the whole dead part. He wasn’t! He breathed air for Christ sake’s and he was warm. She could still feel his touch on her skin. He wasn’t dead and vampires were supposed to be dead.

Then he went and proved it. She was a foot away, watching. She watched in amazement as his tooth sliced through David’s finger. If it was fake it would have fallen out of his mouth and it certainly wouldn’t have cut his finger. He tasted the blood! That was disgusting. She couldn’t believe this. She had to get it together.

She was about to turn and run for it when Ephraim started to tell David to go see a doctor. As she contemplated that, David ran out of the room leaving her to face Ephraim.

“What the hell….” she murmured against her better judgment.

He gave her a lopsided grin. “I don’t suppose there’s any chance that you didn’t see that?”

She shook her head. His smile disappeared as he sighed, “I didn’t think so.”

He turned to face her. “I need to taste your blood.”

She backed away from him. “I’m not letting you sink your teeth into me, you bloodsucker!”

As her back hit the table she reached back for a weapon. She found the roll basket and picked it up quickly, hugging it to her chest. She began throwing rolls at him while she retreated away from him. “Get back!”

He ducked out of the way easily. “Or what? You’ll throw butter at me?” he teased.

“I’m not kidding….I’ll….I’ll…” She looked around the room, there was nothing around that she could use, no crosses, no holy water. Damn it, why hadn’t her Grandmother found religion? That would be really helpful at the moment.

Ephraim held his hands up. She was out of rolls. “Listen, I know you’re frightened and I understand that. I’m not trying to scare you, but I need to taste your blood.”

She threw the basket at him. “Are you crazy? I’m not letting you bite me!”

“I don’t want to bite you. Your blood is the last thing I want.” He looked pained.

That stopped her short. “My blood’s not good enough for you?”

“That’s not it at all.” He didn’t try to walk after her. Ephraim remained where he was, but they both knew that he could get to her before she made it to the door so she didn’t try to run, yet.

“Wait, you do drink blood, don’t you?” This was getting really confusing.

He ran a frustrated hand through his hair. “Yes!”

“You don’t have to snap it was just a question.”

He held up a hand. “My apologies.”

She nodded her acceptance. “Why isn’t my blood good enough? I bathe, I eat healthy, I don’t use drugs, drink or smoke. I’m not a vampire or anything, but I would think that would make my blood attractive.”

His jaw dropped. “Are you trying to get me to bite you?”

“No!”

“Then why-“

“Because you insulted my blood!”

He pinched the bridge of his nose and laughed.

“You think this is funny?” Madison demanded.

“No, I think this is the most trying conversation of my life.”

Madison grabbed the bun from her grandmother’s abandoned plate and chucked it at him, hitting him in the chest. She pulled a chair in front of her to keep it between them in the false hope that it would be enough to stop him. She knew it wouldn’t. It just made her feel better to do something.

“Hey! What was that for?”

“You keep insulting me when really you should be explaining to me why I shouldn’t scream at the top of my lungs for help.”

He sighed as he pulled out a chair and flopped down on it. “You want an explanation?”

“Yes, I think,” she waved frantically around the room and then at him, “that I deserve one don’t you think?”

Ephraim shook his head slowly. “No, I think you owe me a thank you.”

“A thank you?” she asked in stunned disbelief.

“Yes, a thank you. I just got rid of that douche bag for you.”

He was an arrogant son of a bitch. She half stepped out from behind the chair to tell him so when she remembered what he was. Something was different. “Hey, why are your eyes blue again and where did your teeth go?”

“Would you believe me if I told you that none of that happened and that you were hallucinating?” he asked, sounding hopeful.

“No!”

He sighed heavily. “I didn’t think so.”

“And you didn’t get rid of him. Candy did when she spilled the beans.”

Ephraim cocked his head to the side to study her. “You really think so?”

“Yes.”

“Are you sure?”

“Yes! How many ways are you going to ask me? Now tell me about your eyes and teeth?”

He shrugged. “I believe you said they’re blue and my teeth are white. What’s to tell?”

She groaned and stomped her foot. “You are so infuriating! You know what I want to know?”

“No I don’t,” he said innocently enough, frustrating the hell out of her.

“Yes, you do!”

He shrugged. She glowered. He glowered back. Finally she threw her hands up in the air. “Fine! You’re obviously playing a game so just tell me what you want and then answer my questions.”

“You’re awfully demanding,” he commented.

“And you’re annoying!”

“Fine, I have a few questions for you before I tell you anything.”

She held her hands. “Wait, why do you get to ask your questions first? I’m the one with the information. I know what you are and could tell everyone.”

   
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