I head down to the kitchen, with nothing more on my mind than what to make for dinner and trying to remember whether I'm expected at work tonight or not.
At least, that's all that's on my mind until I find Fate leaning against the wall, pretty much on the verge of tears.
"What's wrong?" I ask with a frown.
"I don't know, I think I've fucked things up or something."
"What d'you think you've fucked up?" I question softly.
"Whatever's going on between me and Brody." I give him a sort of curious look. "I told him I think I love him," he sighs.
"Ahh. Give him a couple of days to think it through," I smile.
"Yeah but what if he..."
"Rejects you? Fate, you're maybe the second or third person outside of his family that he actually gives a shit about. I doubt he'll turn you down." He looks kinda shocked at that. I start looking for something to eat, giving him a few moments for that to sink in. I glance round, noticing that he's still kinda shocked. "What? He's a borderline sociopath and emotionally retarded. I dunno why it surprises you so much."
"So you don't think he's just sticking with me for the sex?"
"Doubt it," I shrug, pulling out a packet of processed ham from the fridge, "though by the sounds of it, your sex life with him isn't so shabby," I chuckle through a mouthful. His cheeks light up and I have to resist the urge to laugh.
"We weren't too loud, were we?"
"You should know the rules by now. So long as everyone still thinks he's your pet, no one will care." Although knowing Brody like I do, I suspect he's far from Fate's pet.
"I care, though," he says, blushing a little more.
"You're welcome to take him to a motel or something instead," I tell him.
"Am I actually allowed to go outside with him without permission now?" he chuckles.
"Let's just say I pulled a few more strings," I hum, finishing off the last of the ham. He looks at me curiously.
"The others were reluctant to give him any freedom at all after he failed to even find out what was going on, let alone put a stop to it," I explain, "but I argued that he's yours, so it's your choice what you do with him, ultimately. And as a wolf, no one will stop you."
"S'okay," I shrug. I did it for Brody, not for you. Does that sound bitter to you? Hmm. He smiles and I smile back, "I think your emotionally retarded vampire is waiting for you." He laughs a little, pecking me on the cheek.
I slip away from the house when the dinner rush is done. Brody might have been told not to go back, but they never said I couldn't go snoop on the pits.
When I get there, I'm met with the sight of more humans being herded into the pens. The child vampire is cramming them in, treating them exactly the way a farmer would treat his cattle. All but one go into the pen, and the one that doesn't get shoved in gets his neck bitten instead.
After a while, he freezes, and stops feeding. Lifting his head, he sniffs the air, as if he's noticed something's amiss. I watch as he looks up at the tree I'm hiding in, knowing I'm well out of sight. He can't possibly see me from here, and the scent of all the humans should be enough to cover my own smell.
Though maybe I'm wrong about that. He drops the human and stares pretty much at where I'm hiding. Time to go, I think. I make the tiniest amount of noise possible as I get down from the tree, hearing the vampire sniff and start following me as I move away from the pens. I transform, using my wolf form to move more quietly as I lead him around in circles. He sniffs me out, though, and isn't confused by my trail.
I hide in an alley, hoping that maybe the smell of the garbage might distract him. But he follows me down, giving me no choice but to run for it. He gives chase, hunting me down through the town. I can smell the borders of another pack's territory. I avoid it for as long as possible, but the vampire ends up chasing me right through it.
I think I run right past their house - the smell of unknown wolves gets stronger and stronger and then maybe a minute after running past the house, there're a couple of wolves on my trail now, too.
Eventually, it becomes clear that no one's going to give up. I turn, stopping abruptly and lay into the small vampire behind me. He bites and kicks and punches at me, and while I'm busy trying to pin him down, the other wolves decide to join in and fight both of us.
Because that's really helpful. Thanks so much.