Waking Up

I heard a voice in the darkness, a voice I’d never heard. “I was the first.” A familiar voice sounded next, “I was the second.” Together they spoke, “You are the final.”

The voices echoed in the darkness and I heard things outside of me, my surroundings coming back into focus. I blinked my eyes open and saw three sets of eyes staring back at me. they reminded me of my tree in my dreamscape. “How long?” I mumbled.

Sage’s eyes sparkled in the light, “Three months, two days and fourteen minutes.”

“I call bullshit.” I croaked out.

Dee was pressing a glass of cold water in my hand while Dev helped me sit up. “What are you doing here?” I asked.

“Paying my respects to the King of New York.”

I groaned. Dev laughed, “You’ve been out for only a few hours. Ant said your power was eating at you for killing.” He wasn’t laughing anymore. “You have to stop doing that.” He grumbled at me.

I noticed Dee was standing away from us. “You can touch us. But promise me you’ll talk to Tony.”

Dee nodded. “I will. I promise.” She fell into my lap and pressed her head against my chest. “I’m sorry.”

“Me too. I’m sorry I worried you all.”

Sage wrapped his arms around us and Dev did too. “That was some hell of a call Nox.” Sage said.

“You felt it?”

“I did. I can’t imagine what it felt like up close and personal. It was like I was suffocating and the only way to breathe was to accept you.”

Dee looked up at me and smiled, “It was like a breathe of fresh air once I accepted it.”

Dev grinned, “I didn’t feel anything pretty boy, only that you were pulling power from me.”

“Why was he different?” Dee asked.

“It’s a long story.” Dev said. “And we’ll talk about it later.”

Jin walked into our shared bedroom with little more than a passing knock on the door. “Nox, there are many people in TCP that are waiting to see you. I know it’s late, but there is a matter of three children.”

I smiled, “Did they meet the boys?”

“They did.”

“Let them have a sleep over. I’ll deal with everything later.”

“And the baby?” Jin asked.

“Bring her here. We’ll take care of it.” I said.

Dee’s eyes lit up, “A baby?” And then it dawned on her, “Are you collecting more kids?”

“I am. Ant says I should make that orphanage and a school. Wanna help?” I asked Dee specifically. “I need someone I trust to take care of all these kids I’m getting.”

Dee smiled. “But I have a job.”

“I’ll pay you. Run it for me Dee. Make sure we have a doctor, good teachers for all the kids. Don’t let them grow up to become like me.”

Dev punched my arm, “Shut up.” He looked at Dee, “You always wanted more. Nox is giving you more kids, more responsibility, more everything. More than I could give you.”

I punched Dev in the arm like he did me, “Now who needs to shut up.”

Dev grinned, “Maybe we both have a lot to learn.”

“Maybe… I’m starving!”

And so life went on. Food and sleep for days were top of my list. Though I only really got the first. I never wanted to be King. Never wanted to rule the Venatori, or anyone. I just wanted to be me. Turns out being me – meant all those things. I was the third Ascendant since the dawning of time prophecized to die four times and rise from the ashes and ascend. I’m not exactly sure what any of that means right now. But I’m sure that will come in time. This isn’t the end of my story. No I think it’s only just gotten started.

My Home (12/13/2017)
Dancing (12/15/2017)
An Apology (12/16/2017)
Bottoming (12/17/2017)
Not My Thing (12/18/2017)
Great Opportunity (12/19/2017)
Submission (12/20/2017)
Unexpected Guests (12/21/2017)
Breakfast (12/22/2017)
Chris’s Mom (12/23/2017)
It’s Saturday (12/24/2017)
Adam’s Influence (12/25/2017)
My Office (12/26/2017)
Your Kinks (12/27/2017)
Don’t go (12/28/2017)
Meeting Andrew (12/29/2017)
Chatting (12/30/2017)
Party Time (12/31/2017)
Phone Calls (1/1/2018)
Hunting (1/2/2018)
The Resort (1/3/2018)
Why? (1/4/2018)
James Wright (1/5/2018)
No More Party (1/6/2018)
Calling One? (1/7/2018)
Accidents Happen (1/8/2018)
Research (1/9/2018)
Faking It (1/10/2018)
More Myself (1/11/2018)
Nightmares (1/12/2018)
Feeling Blue (1/13/2018)
Finding Dev (1/15/2018)
First Concert (1/16/2018)
A Proposal (1/17/2018)
Lost In You (1/18/2018)
Bind Me (1/19/2018)
Bound to the Son (1/20/2018)
Control (1/21/2018)
Sunlight (1/22/2018)
Breakfast (1/23/2018)
Confrontation (1/24/2018)
The Venatori (1/25/2018)
Nick’s Gift (1/26/2018)
We Should Talk (1/27/2018)
Empath to Empath (1/28/2018)
Broken (1/29/2018)
What I Saw (1/30/2018)
Eyes Inside (1/31/2018)
Busy Little Bee (2/1/2018)
Shelter (2/2/2018)
Dumpster Diving (2/3/2018)
Explosions (2/4/2018)
Right Behind You (2/5/2018)
Plans (2/6/2018)
Challenges (2/7/2018)
Disturbances (2/8/2018)
Waking Up (2/9/2018)

Disturbances

The CCB followers were all on their knees. Not that my power hadn’t cowed them before, but now I wasn’t holding the power over them, they bent to acknowledge my authority. I sighed. I had taken a life and now there was more people looking to me for it.

Elena Saunders was the first to stand and she came to me with a bright smile and an outstretched hand. “If there is anything I can do for you.”

I took her hand and I pulled her close. I whispered into her ear, “You will stop the attack on the Venatori, now, or you will end up like your ex-husband.”

She gasped and pulled away from me snatching her hand from my grasp. “I will not.”

I raised my voice so all could hear. “Anyone who attacks the Venatori, or another race will be dealt with swiftly. And any caught helping the Architects or part of the group will be punished with due justice. So stop the attack now. Or the consequences for you will be dire.”

Elena paled. “Fine. What are you going to do to us?”

I shrugged. “If you stop the bombs now, before they go off tomorrow I’ll do nothing other than request names and keep it on record.”

“We did nothing wrong.”

“Precisely why I will do nothing other than take names of those who like to plot against other races so the next time something like this happens I know who to ask.”

“But it was James’s orders. We didn’t act alone.”

I laughed at Elena. “Like divorcing your husband just before you blow up the Venatori just to gain power.”

If I hadn’t seen it I wouldn’t have thought it possible but Elena’s skin drew on an ashen shade even more than before. I was hitting all the nails on the head, but she didn’t know I had been listening to her talk with Hector.

“Feras.” she howled at me.

“That all you got?” I asked. “Stop it now.”

I looked down at Ant and Darwynn. “Get me telepaths, no one leaves here without a deep scan.”

Darwynn’s eyes went wide but Ant only nodded and headed for the door grabbing Darwynn’s shoulder.

They hadn’t gotten far when the doors to the auditorium flew open and I saw an old balding man strutting through the door with many people behind him. The crowd parted like the red sea and he walked up to the stage shouting. “I challenge you for leadership of the CCB.”

Fuck! I just got the job now I’m getting challenged for it. And by the leader of the Venatori. What the fuck?

Mark walked up the stairs and saw the two bodies. “What have you done boy?”

I smirked at him and let my Cesari power flair. “I challenged James Wright to save your sorry asses.” I growled.

“I…. You killed him?”

“I did.”

It was only moments before Ant and Darwynn had fled their current mission and were standing behind me. As were Adrian and Dom. I had the entire supernatural community at my back in that particular moment except for the Dragons and the Venatori. Humans didn’t count in this war, they didn’t know the Clandestine Providence we protected them.

Mark Green – the high and mighty Regnans of the Imperedo was speechless as he stared at the two dead bodies. And just like that he snapped to face me. “My challenge still stands. Let it be decided who really is the strongest of us.”

I laughed. “Really? You think you can out power me.”

Ant spoke behind me, “He is the Ascendant.”

Dom added, “The True Regnans.”

I wanted to laugh at how easily it came from their mouths. I was not any of those things. But I wouldn’t back down either.”

“Fight me boy.”

“The rules?”

He laughed, like the others had laughed. “There are no rules – to the death, as is pack law.”

I added, “As if Venatori law.” I nodded. “Are you sure there are no rules?”

He charged me. In his old age he still moved quickly and with such agility I hadn’t expected, but I was faster and quicker with my ability than he was and he didn’t even suspect I would use it. He charged towards me and I strung up a wire of air so thin and sharp it cut through his neck like a hot knife through butter.

There was an uproar of ‘disgrace’ and ‘dishonorable’.

I flared my power again and there was silence. Every mouth was closed and every knee bent. Every. Knee.

“I asked him what the rules were. There were none. Are there any left who want to challenge me today?” My voice echoed in the audience.

I saw my father in the crowd. Dorian too. It made me wonder what they thought. I reined my power in and the crowd heaved a collective sigh of releif but the all stayed on bent knee. A voice in the back drew my attention. Il Cane stood in the doorway shadowed by the darkness that had overtaken the daylight when night fell. “The Ascendant has risen!” And then she and all the vampires behind her bent knee. There were whispers of Ascendant, Regnans, King floating through the crowd.

I felt weak. I’d killed twice with the power and I wanted my bed. I needed to be alone. Ant and Darwynn were at my side without being called and the three of us walked out of the auditorium through the parting crowd, all still on their knees.

I was out the door and around the corner when I collapsed. I had only the vaguest of recollection of Ant scooping me up and whisking me away in the shadows. The rest was darkness.

My Home (12/13/2017)
Dancing (12/15/2017)
An Apology (12/16/2017)
Bottoming (12/17/2017)
Not My Thing (12/18/2017)
Great Opportunity (12/19/2017)
Submission (12/20/2017)
Unexpected Guests (12/21/2017)
Breakfast (12/22/2017)
Chris’s Mom (12/23/2017)
It’s Saturday (12/24/2017)
Adam’s Influence (12/25/2017)
My Office (12/26/2017)
Your Kinks (12/27/2017)
Don’t go (12/28/2017)
Meeting Andrew (12/29/2017)
Chatting (12/30/2017)
Party Time (12/31/2017)
Phone Calls (1/1/2018)
Hunting (1/2/2018)
The Resort (1/3/2018)
Why? (1/4/2018)
James Wright (1/5/2018)
No More Party (1/6/2018)
Calling One? (1/7/2018)
Accidents Happen (1/8/2018)
Research (1/9/2018)
Faking It (1/10/2018)
More Myself (1/11/2018)
Nightmares (1/12/2018)
Feeling Blue (1/13/2018)
Finding Dev (1/15/2018)
First Concert (1/16/2018)
A Proposal (1/17/2018)
Lost In You (1/18/2018)
Bind Me (1/19/2018)
Bound to the Son (1/20/2018)
Control (1/21/2018)
Sunlight (1/22/2018)
Breakfast (1/23/2018)
Confrontation (1/24/2018)
The Venatori (1/25/2018)
Nick’s Gift (1/26/2018)
We Should Talk (1/27/2018)
Empath to Empath (1/28/2018)
Broken (1/29/2018)
What I Saw (1/30/2018)
Eyes Inside (1/31/2018)
Busy Little Bee (2/1/2018)
Shelter (2/2/2018)
Dumpster Diving (2/3/2018)
Explosions (2/4/2018)
Right Behind You (2/5/2018)
Plans (2/6/2018)
Challenges (2/7/2018)
Disturbances (2/8/2018)
Waking Up (2/9/2018)

Challenges

Outside of the Night Life building Ant waiting in a patch of shade. He had bought a new pair of sunglasses and was tapping mine in the palm of his hand. He didn’t smile when he saw me. He handed me the pair of glasses and fell in step next to me, “So what’s the plan?”

“I become leader of the Celestial Body.”

We walked with Darwynn taking the leader – he was by my side but we followed him. There was a general foreboding in the air. I felt it with every fiber of my being. I could die in this battle. I don’t know why it scared me. Theory was I was immortal. All Ascendant’s were. But when was I ever a guy who followed rules.

We walked for what seemed like forever. And when I was smart enough to look at our surroundings we’d been walking in circles. I looked at Darwynn and he said, “Trust me.”

I shrugged and nodded. I trusted him. We’d come a long way from him trying to kill me. He’d gone from pack leader to a lackey. And I’d gone from an inconsequential nothing to the Ascendant. How the fuck does that even happen?

We made the same loop one more time and that’s when I noticed all the energy around me. All the supernatural Therian energy around me. I stopped and looked behind us, in the crowds mingling around me I saw familiar faces – Adrian and Dom were the two most recognizable, but I saw other were’s I’d saved or helped or caught and let go. I looked at Darwynn and frowned, “You’ve been calling them?”

He shook his head, “No. Pack magic. A challenge has been issued on intent, we are circling to make sure enough of your support is here.”

I sighed. “I have all the support I need.” I tapped my chest over my heart. “Let’s just do this.”

He nodded and headed for a building across the street. It was an old theater that was no longer showing plays or movies. But for it’s lack of shows it was immaculate. Darwynn walked me to the auditorium and he and Ant both took a step back behind me as I pushed open the doors. I was really doing this.

I took a deep breath and stepped into the darkness of the room. I felt energy of all sorts around me. But up on stage sat a throne, and in it a man who was bristling with power. “Why if it isn’t the vampire’s pet?” James called out. Behind him stood a hulking man, he had a head full of hair and a thick beard to match. He reminded me of the wolf he was.

“I need you to stop trying to blow up the Venatori. You killed a lot of innocent people today.”

“Casualties of war. And Humans are expendable.”

“So says a former human.” I quipped.

James laughed, “I wasn’t bitten, born to the cause just as you were. Though I can’t say the same for all of my brethren who have not escaped your injustice.”

“It’s not my injustice, James. I try to do right by all of you.”

“And what did that get you? Exile. Feras!”

I sighed. “You know I’ve been called worse.”

There was hissing all around me as I walked towards James Wright – leader of the CCB. His people hissed and chanted Feras in a low murrmur that followed me up to the stage. The aisle filled with my people Ant and Darwynn directly behind me and the New York City wolf packs filling all the empty spaces. The tension was high.

“Why are you here, boy?”

“I told you.”

“You know I won’t stop because you asked me to.”

“I can try right?” I grinned at him.

I vaulted up on to the stage and gave the king a flourishing bow. “I cha…”

Charles Saunders stepped between his King and myself and growled at me, “I challenge you to the rule of the Ascendant.”

I laughed, I hadn’t thought about that. They thought it was a title, something earned not born to it. “Sure.” I said. “Rules?”

“There are no rules, pretty boy. To the death.” He said even as he charged me.

“Okay.” He was therian – which meant he was super strong, super fast and super healed. And yeah, his bite could kill me. But he was a wolf so chances are I was safe. That DNA file I caught only a glimpse of, had werewolf written in big bright letters. I hadn’t really had time to read it. But I understood it well enough.

My mother had come to the Venatori because of a rogue werewolf attack on her family. She was the sole survivor. Bitten but alive. But my mother never changed with the next moon – or any moon there after. My mother carried the genetics to become a werewolf. Her children could become were’s. But she would never turn. The full moon didn’t affect her and she was essentially human. Except she wasn’t and when I was born I inherited the same genes. Being half Venatori I was also part werewolf. It had explained a lot in those few moments before I let the wolf inside me go. It was pack magic for certain when I stepped out of the way of the charging bull before he slammed into my mid section. He stumbled past me and took a few second to collect himself.

He was wolf. I pulled every bit of my power to me, everything vampire, and wolf, my cesari magic and I let it flow outward. I didn’t do anything with it but I heard the gasps from the crowd around me and in front of me the man who was charging me again fell to his knees, cowed by the power.

Behind me James Wright hollered, “Finish him. One must die.” He laughed. “You can’t do it boy! How do you expect to beat me.”

I looked out into the crowd not on the stage and each and every one of them except the alphas were kneeling. Ant stood tall. Darwynn was bent to his knee but not nearly as low as everyone else. Dom and Adrian were standing and James Wright behind me sat in his chair unphased.

Mercy would not do here. I walked up to Charles and knelt down and looked him in the eye. “I’m sorry your wife left you, but it has nothing to do with me, you should have stayed behind him.” I reached up and grabbed his docile head and I snapped his neck with a move the Venatori taught me. It was quick and easy and I had won.

I stood up and turned to James Wright. “Since I was so rudely interrupted let me say it again. I challenge you to the leadership of the CCB.”

“Your tricks won’t work on me.”

“Same rules?” I asked.

“You really are just a kid.”

I grinned at him. “Just checking.”

James stood up from his throne and took a step towards me. He cracked his knuckles, “This will be fun.”

“I just want to clarify that anything goes?”

He growled. “Yes.” He lunged at me aggravated and I stepped out of his way. I didn’t want to fight him but I knew I had to do this.

“Hold still.”

His hands grew to claws and he attacked again. He anticipated my movements and landed a blow with his claws against my side. I felt the sting and pain of the slashes. He slashed again and again and I was barely able to get up a shield to block his blows from landing against my body. I backed up with each blow and he kept coming and now he had me pinned against the curtains. All I was doing was defending myself. I had to end this.

I embraced my power and pulled air in and I wrapped it around James’ heck and then tugged. It was how I had killed Emerson and the moment I felt the power take his life and the werelion fell to the ground in a heap.

My Home (12/13/2017)
Dancing (12/15/2017)
An Apology (12/16/2017)
Bottoming (12/17/2017)
Not My Thing (12/18/2017)
Great Opportunity (12/19/2017)
Submission (12/20/2017)
Unexpected Guests (12/21/2017)
Breakfast (12/22/2017)
Chris’s Mom (12/23/2017)
It’s Saturday (12/24/2017)
Adam’s Influence (12/25/2017)
My Office (12/26/2017)
Your Kinks (12/27/2017)
Don’t go (12/28/2017)
Meeting Andrew (12/29/2017)
Chatting (12/30/2017)
Party Time (12/31/2017)
Phone Calls (1/1/2018)
Hunting (1/2/2018)
The Resort (1/3/2018)
Why? (1/4/2018)
James Wright (1/5/2018)
No More Party (1/6/2018)
Calling One? (1/7/2018)
Accidents Happen (1/8/2018)
Research (1/9/2018)
Faking It (1/10/2018)
More Myself (1/11/2018)
Nightmares (1/12/2018)
Feeling Blue (1/13/2018)
Finding Dev (1/15/2018)
First Concert (1/16/2018)
A Proposal (1/17/2018)
Lost In You (1/18/2018)
Bind Me (1/19/2018)
Bound to the Son (1/20/2018)
Control (1/21/2018)
Sunlight (1/22/2018)
Breakfast (1/23/2018)
Confrontation (1/24/2018)
The Venatori (1/25/2018)
Nick’s Gift (1/26/2018)
We Should Talk (1/27/2018)
Empath to Empath (1/28/2018)
Broken (1/29/2018)
What I Saw (1/30/2018)
Eyes Inside (1/31/2018)
Busy Little Bee (2/1/2018)
Shelter (2/2/2018)
Dumpster Diving (2/3/2018)
Explosions (2/4/2018)
Right Behind You (2/5/2018)
Plans (2/6/2018)
Challenges (2/7/2018)
Disturbances (2/8/2018)
Waking Up (2/9/2018)

Plans

Hector and Elena had gone off and I hadn’t followed them. I found Darwynn sitting in the same chair Ieft him and I wanted to flop down next to him and just ignore everything, but that wasn’t me was it? I sighed as I tapped my friend on the shoulder. He stood up with the grace of a Therian and followed me out the door. I wrapped him behind my veil and through up a cone of silence as well. No sound got out and Darwynn never even noticed.

“I have a feeling the building bombed was a Venatori safe house that James and the other found out about. They plan on blowing up the AU building like you suggested – tomorrow. I can’t let that happen.” I told Darwynn.

“What are you going to do?”

I shrugged. “I don’t know what I can do. I can’t evacuate the whole building. If I call in a bomb threat things go sideways. I can’t hunt for bombs. I don’t know if they are laid, or if they are going to be planted later. And even if found the bombs what would I do with them. I know nothing about bombs.”

Darwynn sighed, “You could do it the diplomatic way, and ask them to stop?” He rolled his own eyes, “I know you don’t want to hear this, but you are Ascendant. You know how leadership works in the Therian communities right?”

“Yeah the strongest leads, same as the Venatori and vampires.” I said.

“How do they prove they are the strongest?” Darwynn asked.

“By killing their predecessor in Therian communities.” I said. “Venatori used to do that, the vampires just succeed.” I sighed, “You want me to challenge James Wright?”

Darwynn shrugged as I added, “You know how pissed off Dee, Sage and Dev will be if I do that?”

“What other options do you have?”

I sighed. “None. I’m the Ascendant.”Just fuck.

I picked up the phone and I called Dev. Dev answered. “Hey Pretty boy, we were just about to start sound check so I can’t talk long.”

“I don’t need long Dev.”

“What’s wrong?”

“You know me so well.” I sighed. “I have to challenge the leader of the CCB to stop him from killing all the Venatori and innocent humans in the AU building. Which means I could fail and die.”

Dev laughed, “You really think you’ll lose, much less die if you do? You really don’t pay attention do you. I don’t know why you are telling me this, even if I say no you’ll still do it.”

“I’m sorry I called.” I said and just before I was about to hang up I heard Dev shouting through the phone.

“Fuck Nox. Stop. Don’t Hang Up.”

I sighed and put the phone to my ear, “What?”

“Look I’m sorry. You just make me angry – a lot apparently.”

“I’m sorry.” I heard the defeat in my voice. I couldn’t do this with Dev mad at me all the time.

“I’m just mad I’m not there. At least that’s what I’m telling myself. I know you’ll be careful. I know you’ll do the right thing for us, not just for everyone else. I’m being selfish. I’ll learn to control my anger better, Pretty boy, I promise.”

I shrugged. “I don’t like the fact that I piss you off this much.”

“Stop it right now, Nox. No fucking pity party. I love you. Fucking drank blood for you. I’m not going anywhere, even if I yell and scream and run away from you. I’ll be back. I can’t stay away.” Dev admitted.

“I’m sorry I’m not easy to live with.”

“Stop, baby. I don’t want to hear that from you. Go save the world. I’ll be fine. I love you, Nox.”

“I love you, Dev.” I wanted to say I’m sorry but I kept it to myself. “I’ll call you when it’s over.”

“You better!” Dev said before he smacked a kiss and hung up the phone.

If Dev was pissed, I can’t imagine Sage was going to take it any better. But I called him too. Sage picked up on the second ring, “I already know.”

“You know what?”

“That you are going to go save the stupid idiots who made your life hell. I don’t want to know how. Don’t tell me. I just know you are going to do it. Ant says he’ll meet you outside the Night Life building for whatever you plan. I don’t want to know Nox.”

“I love you Sage.”

“I love you too. You die again I’m going to kick your ass.”

I laughed. “Deal.”

Sage sighed, “Come back to us, Nox.”

“I will. I promise.”

Sage whispered his good bye I could hear him biting down the anger to yell at me. I should call Dee.

But when I did I got voice mail. “Hey Dee, I know you are busy with your Dad. But I just wanted to say I love you and I’m about to do something you’ll be angry at me for, but I have to do it. I’m sorry. I love you and you can berate me when it’s all done. Love you.”

I hung up with Dee’s voice mail and looked at Darwynn who was politely ignoring my phone conversations. “Ant will meet outside of the Night Life building. Take me where I need to go to find James.”

Darwynn nodded. “As you wish, boss.”

And so the plan was made…. I was about to take on a werelion who had forcefully taken over the CCB because he thought he could do better. I just wanted to save the Venatori. Why? I don’t know but I couldn’t let all those people die. I mean I did try to save Garrett, these people are no worse than him. Why was I such a good guy?

My Home (12/13/2017)
Dancing (12/15/2017)
An Apology (12/16/2017)
Bottoming (12/17/2017)
Not My Thing (12/18/2017)
Great Opportunity (12/19/2017)
Submission (12/20/2017)
Unexpected Guests (12/21/2017)
Breakfast (12/22/2017)
Chris’s Mom (12/23/2017)
It’s Saturday (12/24/2017)
Adam’s Influence (12/25/2017)
My Office (12/26/2017)
Your Kinks (12/27/2017)
Don’t go (12/28/2017)
Meeting Andrew (12/29/2017)
Chatting (12/30/2017)
Party Time (12/31/2017)
Phone Calls (1/1/2018)
Hunting (1/2/2018)
The Resort (1/3/2018)
Why? (1/4/2018)
James Wright (1/5/2018)
No More Party (1/6/2018)
Calling One? (1/7/2018)
Accidents Happen (1/8/2018)
Research (1/9/2018)
Faking It (1/10/2018)
More Myself (1/11/2018)
Nightmares (1/12/2018)
Feeling Blue (1/13/2018)
Finding Dev (1/15/2018)
First Concert (1/16/2018)
A Proposal (1/17/2018)
Lost In You (1/18/2018)
Bind Me (1/19/2018)
Bound to the Son (1/20/2018)
Control (1/21/2018)
Sunlight (1/22/2018)
Breakfast (1/23/2018)
Confrontation (1/24/2018)
The Venatori (1/25/2018)
Nick’s Gift (1/26/2018)
We Should Talk (1/27/2018)
Empath to Empath (1/28/2018)
Broken (1/29/2018)
What I Saw (1/30/2018)
Eyes Inside (1/31/2018)
Busy Little Bee (2/1/2018)
Shelter (2/2/2018)
Dumpster Diving (2/3/2018)
Explosions (2/4/2018)
Right Behind You (2/5/2018)
Plans (2/6/2018)
Challenges (2/7/2018)
Disturbances (2/8/2018)
Waking Up (2/9/2018)

Right Behind You

Before I was out of the Night Life building Darwynn was by my side. “Hey boss.”

“Stop calling me that.”

Darwynn chuckled. “Not on your life boss. “

I sighed. “What did you find out about the Architects?”

Darwynn shrugged, “Not much. It takes finesse to find out about secret organization.”

I nodded. “Just asking.” I said.

“I know.” He grinned. “I’m surprised you didn’t insist on going with Ant.”

“The Architects are important. they have a meeting. I need to know what they are Darwynn. I have this strange feeling.”

Darwynn laughed. “I’m surprised Ant didn’t come with you.”

“He knows me too well.”

“The bomb needed your evaluation.” Darwynn said, “Or at least one of your minions.”

“You aren’t my minions.” I grinned. “Minions are cute and yellow and don’t speak a lick of English.”

Darwynn laughed, “Drake make you watch it?”

“Would you think less of him if I told you Dev did?” I grinned. It had been just him and I. Dee was on a date with Sage. And my dad had the boys. Dev hadn’t even asked if I’d seen any of the movies. He just started watching them. We were curled up in on his bed in his old apartment waiting for Dee to come back with Sage and he and I’d walk home.

Darwynn laughed, “I think I might.”

We reached our destination which was an old hotel that had been in the City for hundreds of years. It was upscale yet down to earth. There was no gold fixtures. It was the kinda place mom and pop out of town would be impressed with the with the service, but feel right at home without all the New York City flash and flair – and it was run by a werebear named Hansel. I couldn’t even pronounce his last name and I always asked him where Gretel was. He would laugh and then glare at me for being Venatori. Like he hadn’t heard the joke all the time. Except Hansel knew exactly who I was asking about when I asked him. Gretel was my nick name for his co-owner Leon Swazye a were-rat. Leon unfortunately had spent so much time as a literal sewer rate gaining intel for the mob back in the day that he was still partial rat and he didn’t really ever leave his home on the top floor unless he was a huge ass rat.

I had stumbled across him while hunting a nest of vampires shortly after I got back from my time with Michaela. He was spying on the vampires I’d been commissioned to kill. I hadn’t killed them and sent them to Ant for rehabilitation. Leon tried to black mail me by telling me he’d tell the others what I’d done. Funny thing about being me? I told the Venatori exactly that when I wrote my report. They werne’t happy but the vamps were taken care of out of the City – done deal – no blood. He was who I wanted to talk to but as I was standing at the desk I saw Hector Ven with Elena Saunders. What the fuck? But then again, it made sense, I was here to spy on the Architects and they were part of it. I nodded to Darwynn and he frowned and shook his head. “I’ll follow you just come if I need back up.”

He nodded and took a seat in the lobby like he was waiting for someone. I didn’t walk directly behind them but close enough I could hear them over everything else with my senses extended. I had my veil up and unless they were uber sensitive to magic no one was going to even know I was there.

Hector spoke in a hushed tone to Elena, “Charles is angry. He went of plan. You should have waited to tell him about the papers until after we accomplished our job.”

Elena sighed and put her hand on his arm. “Hector, darling, Charles was going to do that anyway. It was a test for the city responders. See how the Feras handled the little scenario and tomorrow when their precious home sees it’s ruin we’ll have the world to ourselves.”

Shit!

Hector stopped with Elena. “Divorcing the Second before our big triumph is stupid.”

Elena smiled. “Hector, if this goes to plan I won’t need Charles again.”

Well I found out two things. Hector was helping Elena get a divorce. And the Architects were planning to destroy the Venatori. This isn’t going to end well.

My Home (12/13/2017)
Dancing (12/15/2017)
An Apology (12/16/2017)
Bottoming (12/17/2017)
Not My Thing (12/18/2017)
Great Opportunity (12/19/2017)
Submission (12/20/2017)
Unexpected Guests (12/21/2017)
Breakfast (12/22/2017)
Chris’s Mom (12/23/2017)
It’s Saturday (12/24/2017)
Adam’s Influence (12/25/2017)
My Office (12/26/2017)
Your Kinks (12/27/2017)
Don’t go (12/28/2017)
Meeting Andrew (12/29/2017)
Chatting (12/30/2017)
Party Time (12/31/2017)
Phone Calls (1/1/2018)
Hunting (1/2/2018)
The Resort (1/3/2018)
Why? (1/4/2018)
James Wright (1/5/2018)
No More Party (1/6/2018)
Calling One? (1/7/2018)
Accidents Happen (1/8/2018)
Research (1/9/2018)
Faking It (1/10/2018)
More Myself (1/11/2018)
Nightmares (1/12/2018)
Feeling Blue (1/13/2018)
Finding Dev (1/15/2018)
First Concert (1/16/2018)
A Proposal (1/17/2018)
Lost In You (1/18/2018)
Bind Me (1/19/2018)
Bound to the Son (1/20/2018)
Control (1/21/2018)
Sunlight (1/22/2018)
Breakfast (1/23/2018)
Confrontation (1/24/2018)
The Venatori (1/25/2018)
Nick’s Gift (1/26/2018)
We Should Talk (1/27/2018)
Empath to Empath (1/28/2018)
Broken (1/29/2018)
What I Saw (1/30/2018)
Eyes Inside (1/31/2018)
Busy Little Bee (2/1/2018)
Shelter (2/2/2018)
Dumpster Diving (2/3/2018)
Explosions (2/4/2018)
Right Behind You (2/5/2018)
Plans (2/6/2018)
Challenges (2/7/2018)
Disturbances (2/8/2018)
Waking Up (2/9/2018)

Explosions

Twenty minutes later the boys were in separate rooms being checkout and the little girl was taken from me and whisked off to infant care. Rob was in a room with his girlfriend. They were talking in hushed whispers while I waited outside with Ant. He kept stealing glances at me, “What?” I asked.

“Dad, always looks good on you.” He sighed, “But you can’t keep them all Nox. I know you want to save every kid who had even a similar life to yours, but you can’t keep them all.”

“What do you want me to do then? Let them die? Let them grow up hating adults and rules and just about everything else because no one cared enough to show them it’s all for a reason?”

Ant smiled. “I expect you will take mother’s offer of making TCP Investigations more than investigations. TCP Home for Wayward Children has a nice ring to it. And The TCP Resort, now open to the public.”

“What do you mean?”

Ant laughed, “Nox, the Night Life building was created for supernatural creatures of all kinds to live a human life. We all want to blend in. Some of us can’t do that. The Resort is meant to take care of our wayward individuals. But since you have arrived we have more non-vampires in care than anything else. You have this knack for inspiring more. You did it as a kid with Dorian. He was just some lacky who did what he was told. Now, he’s second to the head of the entire academy because he had you as a muse. Jason Hill the same. He used your weird ass theories and is becoming a great teacher to young kids in the Venatori. If he’d only picked up your empathy towards the other races too. Matt did that tho. And then there’s me. I opened the Resort for vampires. You are here a few months and it’s already seeing people out the wazoo. We are making more money just by your very existence. Mother will give you more floors. The one below us is perfect for the Home for Wayward Children and the School for the Gifted. Shit Nox, you are the Ascendant, people will come far and wide to come learn something you endorse even if they don’t believe in it.”

“I can’t run a business Ant.”

He grinned at me, “No, but we can fix that. Just let me talk to mother and Larry and Terry will get on it. We have the funds. Don’t worry about that.”

“Your mother can’t keep paying for everything.”

“She’s not. Old money is a donation Nox. Mother expects nothing back.”

“Just a loyal pet.” I sneered.

He laughed, “You are as much a pet to my mother as my mother is a pet to you. Nox the money is just sitting there – doing nothing. It’ll sit there and do nothing for eternity if you don’t use it. Mother protects her own first. You, are her own. You are my Chevalier. You are my Master. There is nothing more family than fucking marriage Nox.”

“I’m not marrying you.” I said with a straight face.

Ant rolled his eyes. “Fine, be that way.” He sighed and leaned in and pressed a kiss to my temple. “Fuck Nox. We can’t be tied any tighter. Let me do this. Because you bring home three more kids and your family is going implode.”

I shrugged. “No it might explode though.”

My words were like an echo in the room when the ringing stopped. A block away there was a loud explosion. I was already moving when Ant grabbed my shoulder. “I’ll do that, you have to go eavesdrop on a client. Darwynn will go with you.”

I only nodded and headed the other direction. I didn’t know where Darwynn was but I assumed Ant had already informed him my destination.

My Home (12/13/2017)
Dancing (12/15/2017)
An Apology (12/16/2017)
Bottoming (12/17/2017)
Not My Thing (12/18/2017)
Great Opportunity (12/19/2017)
Submission (12/20/2017)
Unexpected Guests (12/21/2017)
Breakfast (12/22/2017)
Chris’s Mom (12/23/2017)
It’s Saturday (12/24/2017)
Adam’s Influence (12/25/2017)
My Office (12/26/2017)
Your Kinks (12/27/2017)
Don’t go (12/28/2017)
Meeting Andrew (12/29/2017)
Chatting (12/30/2017)
Party Time (12/31/2017)
Phone Calls (1/1/2018)
Hunting (1/2/2018)
The Resort (1/3/2018)
Why? (1/4/2018)
James Wright (1/5/2018)
No More Party (1/6/2018)
Calling One? (1/7/2018)
Accidents Happen (1/8/2018)
Research (1/9/2018)
Faking It (1/10/2018)
More Myself (1/11/2018)
Nightmares (1/12/2018)
Feeling Blue (1/13/2018)
Finding Dev (1/15/2018)
First Concert (1/16/2018)
A Proposal (1/17/2018)
Lost In You (1/18/2018)
Bind Me (1/19/2018)
Bound to the Son (1/20/2018)
Control (1/21/2018)
Sunlight (1/22/2018)
Breakfast (1/23/2018)
Confrontation (1/24/2018)
The Venatori (1/25/2018)
Nick’s Gift (1/26/2018)
We Should Talk (1/27/2018)
Empath to Empath (1/28/2018)
Broken (1/29/2018)
What I Saw (1/30/2018)
Eyes Inside (1/31/2018)
Busy Little Bee (2/1/2018)
Shelter (2/2/2018)
Dumpster Diving (2/3/2018)
Explosions (2/4/2018)
Right Behind You (2/5/2018)
Plans (2/6/2018)
Challenges (2/7/2018)
Disturbances (2/8/2018)
Waking Up (2/9/2018)