Chapter 8.5Mature

“You didn't answer my question,” I muttered as he reached across and put it back where it came from. When he returned to standing, he added insult to injury and ruffled my hair. I couldn't help letting out a exasperated sigh, something that made him laugh.

“You really want to know how old I am, don't you?” he asked, smirking. I considered lying and saying I didn't care. But I knew he'd see right through the lie and then I'd get nowhere.

“Yes. It's not like you don't already know lots about me,” I said, turning so I was facing him.

“I don't know that much about you,” he replied.

“You know about my best friend, my family and you've heard me rant about college,” I pointed out. “All I know about you is you live here, you like books and hate modern movies. You're part of the vampire council and want the treaty to work,” I said.

“Wow, when you put it like that,” he laughed. “I didn't realise you'd picked up so much,” he murmured, studying me. I blinked, unsure how to respond. Before I could he held something up. It was a black and bulky, old-fashioned camera, complete with a leather satchel to carry it in. “You like photography right?” he said.

“Err, yeah,” I said, trying to work out why he was showing me the old camera. And fighting the strong urge to snatch it and find out if vampires could be caught on camera. “Why?” because I wasn't about to assume anything. William rolled his eyes, something that was oddly comical. He shoved the camera into my hands and walked away.

“It's just collecting dust here,” he shrugged, his back facing me. I wasn't really listening anymore, I was too busy studying the ins and outs of the camera. I checked and there was film inside. I couldn't believe how good a condition it was in and had to restrain myself from taking pictures here and now. I wasn't about to waste film. It's probably cost a lot to buy more.

“Come on, it's late,” William said, making me look up from the camera. Based on his smirk he'd been watching me. I tried not to feel embarrassed about that. Any decent photographer would be doing exactly what I was doing. I followed him back to the flat and carefully put the camera down on the coffee table.

“Thanks,” I said, realising I'd gotten too distracted before. William just shrugged and sat on the sofa next to me, leaning back against the sofa with a sigh, shutting his eyes. “You sound tired,” I said. Restraining an urge to make any old-man jokes, just.

“It's been an eventful week,” he replied, laughing softly, his eyes still closed. I couldn't help it, I took the chance to look at him again. He looked a lot more relaxed than that time in my room. I couldn't help letting my gaze wonder to his lips, which were slightly parted. I looked away quickly, trying to push away the memory.

“Guess only Davis can do it,” he chuckled. I blinked at the mention of my dad. Up until now I'd managed to ignore everything, just concentrating on what I had to do, and letting William distract me. I could feel a familiar burning behind my eyes. “Hey,” William said, leaning over and brushing his fingers under my eyes. I hadn't even started crying yet.

“Don't worry. I'm going to talk to Davis tomorrow at the next meeting,” he promised. Before I could reply that it was pointless, he pulled me into a hug. A small distant part of me reminded me I was getting too close to a vampire. I told that part to go away, and clung to him. I didn't cry though. I just enjoyed the simple embrace, my eyes growing heavy. I could feel William running a hand through my hair, just like he had before in the rain. I couldn't help a contented sigh before I shut my eyes. I could feel William's chest move as he laughed softly.

“Come on,” he murmured. Lifting me up easily. I probably should've fought, but I was way too tired. He placed me on the bed and I sluggishly opened my eyes, confused.

“I thought I was taking the sofa,” I murmured, my thoughts only half-coherent. He smiled, ruffling my hair softly.

“I'll take it tonight. You just sleep,” he said. I tried to voice an objection but he placed his fingers over my lips, stilling any words. He leaned forward, kissing my forehead. Then he left. I drifted to sleep, dreaming sad dreams about being a lone wolf. And then happier dreams of William.

The End

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