Order of the Umbra

We all stared at the book, Ant was the first to speak. “The Umbra is all magic, right?”

I nodded. “The Order of the Umbra.”

Alec shook his head. “Not the Chaos and Order make up the Umbra. Order comma of the Umbra.”

“A person?” I asked.

“An entity anyway. My sire used to speak of the game of souls. Order likes to sit back and watch while Chaos sticks his fingers everywhere. But every once in a while Order makes his own champion.” Alec spoke as if he were just telling the kids a bed time story.

“The Ascendants, Aeryn and Prometheus,” Ant said.

Alec nodded, “So says the lore.”

“So Master of Domination, what else are you good for?” I grinned at him.

“Not much you’d be interested in lover boy. I don’t have those blue eyes you love,” Alec added with a sly smile and a wink.

“I think Alex will appreciate that.” I led the two vampires into the kitchen area. Everyone else was doing their thing. Cass, Hunter and Drake were with Rosie who was taking care of Nickey in the mornings for Carla, so Mrs. Morgan had offered to take the three little ones off my hands until we could figure out what to do with them. Home school sounded like a better option for them, than sending them to public school. Not that I was worried about their education, I was worried about their powers. Until Hunter could control his, Cass didn’t read everyone’s head, and Drake didn’t have to hide his eyes all day it was going to be a difficult journey for them.

Matt fit right in with the twins and while he was Laker’s mate he felt more like one of their brothers, maybe that was because I thought of him that way, and so did Rider. I wish I’d known they were pack so I could have told them to be careful in their situations. I think Rider is careful but even I don’t know how you form the forever bond with a mate.

I came out of my head to Alec laughing. “He always do that?”

I grinned and started making lunch for everyone. They’d eat at their own leisure so it was something easily pulled out and fixed – sandwiches usually worked best. Today’s was left overs from the previous nights dinner – a few shredded steak sliders.

Ant nodded. “He does that all the time.”

“Same with the talking fast thing?” Alec asked.

“I’m right here,” I said. “And yes Alec that’s normal too. I will try to slow down for your foreign ears.”

The new vampire shook his head. “Not at all, I’m just making sure I know what’s normal. I promised your body guard I would watch you.”

“For some reason I don’t think you’d make a good bodyguard.”

“I won’t fight your battles, but if there is a threat I can be quite persuasive.” Alec nodded.

The book sat closed on the counter top while I cooked. Alec kept looking at it like it was a snake about to jump out and get him. “It’s not going to bite.”

The beautiful blond vampire walked in followed by Francesco and Aurora – hand in hand. Valentine soon wrapped her slender arms around the French vampire and pressed a cold kiss to his cheek. She looked soft and innocent and like she was born to be a model. She gave me a wide smile. “Nox?”

I nodded. “Yes, Ms. Valentina, what can I do for you.”

“My dearest has sworn fealty to you?”

I nodded. “I guess so.”

“And you control the book. This book.” She looked down at it and reached out to touch the cover but it grew bright red and hot and she pulled her hand away.

Alec pulled his lovely vampire girlfriend closer to him and away from the book. “But it might.”

“It won’t hurt you,” I said. “It doesn’t trust Valentina because I don’t trust her.”

Ant reached for the book and flipped the cover to add to my point he understood me, so understood that it wouldn’t hurt him. “How did you know?”

“Because you two can read it and she can’t.”

Jin came walking into the room. “Nox you have impromptu visitor.”

“Okay.” Jin started to go back the way she’d come. “Jin, can you make the arrangements to get the supernaturals in a meeting someplace neutral at night so all the vampires can come. Maybe reserve one of the park locations.”

Jin nodded. “Yes. I can. I have already done as you asked actually tonight at midnight, if you can pull yourself away from the pile of family.”

My impromptu visitor was Adrian Sheridan, one of the people I wished to have Jin call.

He was staring at the four vampires he didn’t know and the book they were all testing. “Adrian,” I said and walked around the counter and wrapped him in a hug. “What brings you here?”

“Rumors,” he said. “That look to be truths. Why is the vampire council here?”

“They seek asylum,” I said.

Adrian laughed. “So now you own the vampires?”

Alec joined Adrian’s laughter. “Not all of us, just my line.”

Adrian’s face went stoic. “You are saying that he’s your Prince? As a Master vampire you took a non-vampire as your leader.”

Alec nodded. “He is Ascendant as Il Cane knew, the book speaks to him.”

Adrian sighed. “I knew this day would come.” Adrian dropped to his hands and knees and he bowed his head.

“What are you doing, Adrian?”

He looked at the floor as he explained, “Do you remember why I dismissed you?”

“You said I had nothing left to learn.”

Adrian shook his head. “No. The older you got, the more power you had. Each time you gave in to the commands that power grew. Every time we put you through your paces I felt weaker and weaker. It wasn’t that I was changing, it took me a while to figure out that even as a bottom you were Alpha. But you were born Omega, Nox.”

“I don’t understand.”

Adrian started to explain but I interrupted, “Sit up stand up don’t talk to the floor, please.”

“I cannot until you accept that I yield. It is your right to keep me prostrated and below you. It is your right as my Alpha to do as you wish with my mind, body and soul.”

“Fine, you yield. Now get up and tell me what the fuck you mean. I can’t be both Omega and Alpha.”

“But you are Nox.”

Alec laughed. “That would explain it all. He was born a piece of trash but his power pushed him to a golden piece of trash.” He grinned at me. “No offense, my prince.”

“None taken but don’t let Alex hear you talk about me that way. You won’t like him when he gets angry,” I said.

“Noted, and I do jest. I refrain from the truth only so as not to assume peculiarities are your thing,” Alec added.

“Peculiarities as you put them were my thing because I knew no better way to cope with what I am. Adrian taught me the merits of self respect and with the help of my dream boy, I found a way through life that doesn’t require my abuse at the hands of men.”

Alec nodded. “I would never hurt a beautiful boy like you. But I digress… You now have a full werewolf pack, a vampire blood line and a dragon clan at your beck and call. New York is next? I do like your ambition.”

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