The kitchen was the same type that was down in the dojo, it was nice and worked well and Jin stocked it well. I hadn’t had to go grocery shopping in two weeks, not that they would let me. I learned that during the day time anytime I went out Ryan left with me, he was Cari’s Chevalier but until Ant could find someone he trusted completely to follow me around in the daylight, Ryan was the one. Vin stayed with me when I was the Night Life building day or night, and Ant went with me at night. That was the plan.
So Vin stood out of the way while I made breakfast. Alex was sitting on the barstool stirring his coffee while I fixed his pancakes and ice-cream. The kids absolutely loved having Alex in the house – ice-cream for breakfast. And it kept them happy and I was happy to have Alex happy.
“So what’s on your docket today?” Alex asked.
“The Golden Dragon, The Vampire Council, and a bunch of tutors.” I looked across the counter at Alex. “Can you be there for that?”
Alex smirked. “I think I can manage that. I’ll get the time from Jin, and I’ll be there. I’m meeting Benj this morning. We’re going over some new business plans.”
I smiled. “You still thinking of bringing a little bit of Vegas to New York?”
“Yeah, Benj misses the show girls. Said he might even get up there and dance with them.” Alex smirked at my instant thought. “Don’t worry pretty boy I’m not going to. I’m more of a silent partner.”
“I’d pay to see it though. But I don’t think I’d let anyone else either.”
Alex chuckled, “That’s my line isn’t it?”
I was flipping the first set of pancakes when Jin walked Reginald Silverman into the kitchen. He was an older gentleman wearing a suit hobbling on a cane but his dragon was hiding in the shadows large and strong and the scales were so bright in the shadows I knew it was all an act. Alex turned to look at him and smirked. “He’s what makes everyone quake in their boots?”
The dragon gave Alex a smile. “You haven’t seen me angry.”
“I wouldn’t like it when you are angry I take it?”
The man smiled and sniffed at the air. “Is that chocolate chip pancakes I smell?”
I nodded, “Drake’s favorite. The rest prefer straight up pancakes and ice-cream. Drake doesn’t like the cold so this is his extra sweet. Would you like some Reginald?”
“Chocolate is a dragon thing actually. And the cold hurts the gland that makes breathing fire possible.”
“That’s good to know.”
Alex laughed. “So you think that Nox likes chocolate ’cause of the dragon blood?”
“It’s not uncommon for humans I’m told,” Reginald said. “And yes Master Nox if it wouldn’t be too much trouble.”
“No problem at all.”
“This is his morning thing. The longer I get him, so eat as much as you like,” Alex said.
“What is it you needed to speak with me about?” I asked as I threw the bacon in the oven to cook while I started working on the next batch of pancakes.
“Ah, it’s about your living arrangements. The others figured a more personal confrontation would be better than us all coming at you ”
“Why would you need to confront me at all?” I asked as I mixed eggs.
“Well, I’m not sure what your advisors have told you about what happened and what we agreed,” Reginald said softly. “But, you cannot stay in a vampire strong hold and remain neutral. We all rely on you and we don’t all feel comfortable coming here.”
“And what was agreed?” I asked of Reginald. I didn’t know what they had agreed, but it didn’t matter, Alex had told me what he’d done and where things stood.
“That once you were well you’d make a decision on a location of neutral domain.”
I set down a plate of pancakes in front of Alex and Mr. Silverman. “And why is my being here a problem. I never asked anyone to come to me in the AU building – nothing has changed in my relationship with you, or the wolves or the vampires. Just because I’m here doesn’t change my allegiances.”
“You have vampire bodyguard, vampire personal assistants, you live in a vampire stronghold. You appear to be taking sides.” Reginald cut a piece of pancake and lifted it to his mouth. He savoured it and closed his eyes. “Mmmm. I can see why The Son likes eating with you.”
Alex was too busy eating to say much as he watched me.
“You do realize that the bodyguards are not my choice, nor the personal assistant. The vampires are paying them, and I just listen.”
“Exactly my point, my boy. You listen to the vampires.”
“And apparently I am head of an entire dragon clan, and have my own wolf pack. So having a few vampires is a problem?”
The golden dragon opened his mouth and it hung there as he stared at me. I gave him a friendly smile as I placed a few strips of bacon on his and then Alex’s plate. Then continued, “I have no money Reginald. I am currently taking all the charity I can get. I have no home, no race, no job. So unless the Dragons or the Wolves want to step up and pay for my family to live in a safe place, I’ll be taking the vampires charity because they are my friends and they care. They are not trying to make a political manoeuvre over other supernatural races. My friendship with Ant has never caused problems before, why should it now?”
The dragon sniffed at the bacon before taking a bite and continuing with his meal. I watched as they ate. Alex was oddly quiet. Just watching you work.
I raised an eyebrow at him and Alex winked at me. “Why did they send you Reginald? Why not Dom or Adrian?”
“The others thought they would see the world your way because they are your friends.” He sighed. “But it is hard pressed to deny the facts. You are leader of The Last Phoenix – you earned the spot through the way of all others before you. And even if you are not wolf, you have a pack. Two sets of twins I understand, plus the numerous others of the Lone Wolf Pack that would follow you if you asked. The vampires have no reason to follow you. It pains the leader of the wolf packs to know you could take them both over with ease. The rest of us are just afraid.”
I nodded. “The Night Life building is neutral territory, it always has been. If the body guards are a problem, Ant needs folks for daytime hours. I will ask him to vet any one who wants the job but they have to pass his process. I will not fight The Son of the Hound on this. He’s keeping me safe from the Venatori should they choose to try and attack me for the things my family did.”
Reginald nodded. “Perhaps you should address the leaders together.”
“Call a meeting,” Alex said. “They’ll all come if you ask. They did when it was just me.”
Reginald smiled. “He is correct. Tell us all the same thing and I think we’ll all agree. And perhaps if you call a neutral location it will go over better.”
“Understood.” I smiled. “Enjoy your meal. There is more where it came from.”
And just like that the meeting was over, and the kids all piled into the kitchen like clockwork. Drake even hopped up into Reginald’s lap for his meal. The old man seemed to enjoy the boy which made me smile.