I sat down with my Dad when I got to work. He was waiting for me. I saw his salt and peppered brown head sticking up above the back of my chair before I got far from Dae’lin’s office. He heard me coming and swivled towards me. “I was expecting you twenty minutes ago.”
I grinned at my father. “We walked here.”
“That’s a change, may I ask why?”
“A boy wanted to walk me and the boys here.” I said as I sat down the corner of my empty desk.
“Sage walked you here?”
I shook my head. “No. My love has been seeing a couple and he came by last night because Sage had to work and I had a nightmare worse than usual and he didn’t want to leave me alone.”
“A strange man stayed in the house with you and the boys?” Kai asked in that over protective voice of a father. And one that grated on me because he hadn’t been my father when I needed it.
“Sage has been seeing him for a while. Fae and Drake like him. Matt too I think.”
“It feels like only yesterday since I was meeting you for the first time. Now I have a three year old grandson and two 16 year old grandsons all from the son who likes boys more than girls.”
I laughed. “I at least like girls, your other son doesn’t. Don’t worry about Dev, he’s a good guy.”
Kai frowned. “I don’t think I’ll ever understand you. You are ready to settle down but you are dating multiple people.”
“That’s right, Dad, you aren’t going to understand it. So don’t worry about me settling down. My relationships don’t matter to you.” I didn’t mean to sound so harsh but there it was. My father didn’t get a say in my love life. He wasn’t there when I needed him and he doesn’t get to tell me how to live my life now.
Kai must have sensed my thoughts. Or seen some variation of the future in those few short minutes we spoke. He gave me a grin as wide his face and patted my leg next to him. “Son, as long as you are happy and the boys are well taken care of.”
I smiled and changed the subject I didn’t want to know what he saw, I kept telling myself that I didn’t believe in fate or destiny or any of those I have no choice matters, but if my father saw me happy I kinda wanted to know what it was that made me happy. But then again, I didn’t want to know. I didn’t want that pressure. I wanted to do this on my own. I could be happy, that’s all that mattered. “You needed my help?”
Kai inclined his head and acknowledged it was time to work. “Yeah, I have a series of vamp killngs. I don’t think it’s one vamp doing it. They appear random and appear like they are sending a message to someone. Can you speak with your contacts?”
I shook my head. “Yeah, I can call Ant. You have the paperwork?”
My dadd patted the folder sitting on my desk in front of him with his short fat fingers. I had my mother’s hands and it made me sigh. “All right here,” he said with a smile. “I figured you’d want the details. Emilio says that we could track them down, but if it’s a message we should probably figure it out before it becomes more.” Kai snickered. “There once was a time when we’d have just hunted the vamps. Now in our old age, this young whipper-snapper comes along and says there might be something going on. Emilio and I aren’t getting any younger. Hunting ain’t getting any easier. But we sure do get more badguys with you doing leg work for us.”
I laughed. “I’m a hunter. I should be out there too.”
“You do more good in here.”
“I’m not some fucking grunt!” I was getting pissy. I knew why and stood up and took a few steps around my desk then turned back. Pacing wasn’t comforting but it was the only thing I could do at the moment.
Kai stood up and his height almost matched my own. He was in his fifty’s but still looked like he was thirty something. And he still could break me in half at any age. “Son. You do more good work here than you can out in the field. You have a family to think about now. You have more contacts than anyone in this facility. And yeah you have only a few people who come to you but Dae’lin gives you jobs here before the grunts out there get them. This is meaningful work, son. We all know you save who you can and give us the left overs.”
I frowned. “I’m not making any new contacts. I can’t do this, Kai. I need to be out there.”
My father pulled me in and hugged me. He never did that. “Son. You are making contacts, for every hunter you help do their job, you are making contacts. Just not on the side you think you need. You know the scariest fucking vampire in the world. You have the founders of V&M on speed dial. You can get in touch with the heads of two werewolf packs. You overrode Mark Green’s decree that the oldest of the Dragons could not come here. Son. You have the contacts you need. Hell, you are on a first name basis with almost all of them. Nox, that’s impressive.”
I shrugged and pulled out of his grip. “I hate sitting at a desk.”
Kai laughed, “Come on let’s go spar. We can talk while we do.”
“I have lunch at noon.”
“A date”, he asked and nodded confirmation as we headed for the elevator.