“Another question. What’s with all these doors?” We walked farther down the hallway before he added. “You live in a fucking closet?” He asked dumbfounded.
“You’ll see.” The rune on my door started to light up when I got near mostly because I willed it so, so Alex could see it. I touched the door and it pushed open, no key, no lock. Magic. And it opened into my studio apartment – all the space I ever needed.
Alex took a step back and looked. “A fucking TARDIS?”
I grinned, “If by that you mean it’s bigger on the inside – yeah. TARDIS fits.”
Alex shook his head and stepped in. The toilet flushed and his eyes immediately swung to the bathroom. I watched him as Ophelia sauntered out of the bathroom on her four feet with her scruffy grey fur. She stopped and looked up at him with her yellow eyes and blinked. She stared at him for what seemed like forever then turned her head and walked back to the bed and jumped up on to my pillow and laid down.
I growled at her. “Fee…” She stood up, lifted her tail and ass straight up snubbing me then curled back on my pillow.
“Your cat alright?”
“Ophelia is fine, other than being ornery why?”
Alex shook his head, black locks falling in front of his eyes. I wanted to push them back but instead I kicked my shoes off then walked around the bar to the kitchen to check on my roasting vegetables. “No reason. She just looks a little mangy.”
“That’s just the way her coat is. She’s a Lykoi – a werewolf cat, she doesn’t have an under coat, so it’s all coarse hair and thin.”
Alex smirked, “A Venatori with a werewolf cat as a pet. I bet that gets all sorts of laughs by your peers.”
I shrugged. “My peers don’t come into my apartment very often. Or at all. Drink?” I asked. “I have water, wine, I think I have a beer or two in there from last week and coffee.”
“You’re the one cooking you tell me.”
He shrugged. I looked in the fridge and actually had more than a few, apparently Ant and Ryan left more than usual. They’d restock later tonight so everyone could get good and lubricated on their night off. I took two bottles out and popped the tops with a little air and handed one to Alex then started prepping the steak for our eats.
“So aren’t you afraid some Venatori is going to kill you ’cause you are breaking some sort of law talking to me about magic?”
I laughed. “Obviously you know about magic at least enough to know what I am, and that we have magic. So no, not really. Besides you’re a path. From what I can tell you are a telepath.” I said but never looked up from the steak I was applying salt and pepper to.
“So why am I not dead if you know what I am?”
“Why would I kill you? Have you done something wrong?”
“Are you planning on doing something wrong?” I asked playfully with a wink.
He smirked at me. “You think highly of yourself and your skills don’t you.”
“I got you to my apartment didn’t I?”
He looked around. “If magic can make this, why do you have a studio apartment? Why not a mansion?”
“This is all the space I need.” I shrugged and looked up as I dropped the steak in the hot pan. “And it’s all it’s programmed to do right now. I could scale it a little, make it a proper one bedroom within the parameters of the rune’s programming, but that’s more space for me to freak out over.”
“What do you mean?”
“It’s more space I have to keep organized. I don’t spend a lot of time here other than sleeping so why do I need more room.”
“You have no TV, I guess you really don’t spend any time here. Friends or your boyfriends?” He asked.
“When I was younger I used to spend time in front of the television, but now I’d rather read a book in my down time. It’s more relaxing. Not that I have a lot of down time.”
“Killing monsters has to be a full time job.”
“I don’t kill monsters.” I said.
“You’re a hunter aren’t you?” Alex asked as he sat down in Fee’s stool. She didn’t even bother moving or looking but she tensed and I knew she knew. But she let it go as she snubbed us both.
“I am. But I don’t kill unless I absolutely have to.”
“This some new trial the Venatori are doing?” He smirked. “Like, let’s see how well this goes over.”
I shook my head. “No. Just me being me. You’ve obviously been following me, so you have to know I have friends who aren’t exactly human or Venatori.”
“You don’t seemed bothered by this knowledge?” Alex polished off the last of his beer with a slight grimace.
“Maybe I like hot guys following me around?” I took his empty bottle and tossed it in the can next to the sink, “Another?”
“I’m good.” He leaned on to the counter, “Or are you trying to get me drunk so you can take advantage of me.”
I grinned at him. “I don’t need you drunk to do that.”
“So you just gonna take me here, now?”
He smirked at me, “I’d like to see you try.”
“Maybe after dinner.” I said. “Or is it Linner?”
“Lupper?” Alex offered helpfully.
“After we eat.” I grinned setting the perfectly cooked steak to the side to rest and finish up the rest of the meal.
“You might want to move to the couch while we eat, or Fee might steal your steak. You are in her seat.”
“Your cat? You let your cat eat at your table?”
“I don’t really have a choice. She’s gonna do it regardless of what I say so why fight it.”
“And she’s toilet trained?”
I laughed. “Yeah. There was a litter box. And there was little dust balls and sand scattered across my floor and I think I had a panic attack for three weeks until we negotiated the terms of her surrender.”
“How’d that go?” Alex was hiding his laugh.
“Yeah, I know, pussy whipped!” I grinned at Alex. “She agreed. And I agreed she can do just about anything else she wants except move things around. Which she still does.” I sighed. “But I deal. I have a problem with sand.”
“You said it not me!” His smirk seemed to be permanently etched on his face and I couldn’t help my reaction I bit my bottom lip. “I can work with the beach for a short time, but I need a shower before I can function properly again.”
“So no beach.” Alex looked almost sad.
“No, I can do the beach. I like the beach. I just need to clean up afterwards.”
It didn’t seem to make him any happier but I pulled the wine out of the fridge and popped the cork poured two glasses and before I could grab the plates Alex was picking them up and carrying them to the coffee table. “You usually eat here?”
I nodded and picked up Fee’s smaller plate to follow him. “When I have company. Fee really doesn’t like anyone sitting in her seat and it’s just easier to avoid the eventual fight you’ll be having with her.”
I set the plate and glasses down and cut a piece off my steak and continued to cut into smaller pieces for Fee. “Does your cat always eat with you?”
“Yeah. She does. It’s a family thing I guess. Ophelia is a unique cat.” I said proudly as I transferred the meat to Fee’s plate along with a few small vegetables..
“You mean more unique than looking like a werewolf?” He asked as she strolled over to join us, sniffing at the plate and giving me a ‘please explain’ look over the vegetables.
“Yeah. She’s possessed.”
“Possessed?” Alex asked before he took a bite of his steak. Drool left the side of his mouth and I couldn’t help the smile that radiated from me. I reached across the space between us and wiped the dripping juices from his cheek. “Holy fuck!” he said. “You always cook like this?”
I shrugged. “Yeah.”
“Do all Venatori cook like you?”
“Hardly. I learned from a top rated chef when I was a kid.”
“Is there anything you can’t do? Hunt monsters, make statues, cook?” Alex said before he fed himself another forkful of steak grabbing a roasted sweet potato with it.
“Don’t forget the running from clowns, crying in elevators and cleaning hordes of sand and being pussy whipped by a cat.” I smirked at him.
Ophelia meowed behind us in agreement. “You can be quiet, Fee. Or I’ll eat all the leftovers.”
Alex smirked, “Do you always have conversations with your cat?”
I nodded. “Fee knows all my secrets.”
“Oh really?” He grinned and looked back over the couch. “Ophelia, you and I need to have a little chat.”
“Good luck with that. She’s a brat.”