Cairo grinned at me as we walked into the derelict warehouse just outside of Colchester. He had not said nor given away anything about where we were going but when I saw an intricate pattern on a peice of corrigated steel I knew what the deal was.
"What part of the Otherworld does this lead to?" I asked, unable to read the markings.
He laughed and pointed at the transportation circle. "Its not to the Otherworld, Jess," he informed me patiently. "Its a different kind if circle that takes us wherever we want to go. I'm taking you to my favourite hanging place; its called the Bloody Rose." His grin sent the good kind of chills down my spine.
He gently took my hand and placed the free one over the centre of the circle. He muttered something in what sounded like Seelie Faerie. A white blast of light shot from the outer circle and formed a barrier around us as Cairo chanted, "Deer tic hurne jucastae wyshey," over and over.
I gripped his arm tight as the world outside of the white shield faded away and began to spin. It span and span until all I could see was a whirl in every direction. Cairo held on to my hand even tighter as the whirl of colour began to slow and sound could break through.
The spinning stopped abruptly and I was met with the back of a building. At the back door stood a very tall Were but I couldn't determine what breed he was.
"Hey, Cairo," the Were said in a surprised and yet friendly tone. "How've you been?"
Cairo turned to him and smiled. "Nie to see you, Jerome. I'm fine. How are you, Alisha and the pups?"
Jerome the Were smiled wolfishly. "I'm good. Lisha and the pups are good, too. They just started teething."
Cairo gestured to me. "Jerome this is my lovely landlady, Jessie-Rose. Jess, meet Jerome Thompson, my best friend of nine years."
I shook Jerome's meaty hand. "Its good to meet you. And don't worry about your sister Carmel."
Jerome and Cairo just stared at me. I shrugged. "Partially touch telepathic. I can read what is just on the very surface. Oh and Carmel is at Passage with myself and the other staff."
Cairo grinned. "You're full of surprises, Jess," he teased.
Jerome was less pleased. "I haven't heard from Carmel in nearly twelve years. Is she okay?" he asked, eyes full of pain.
I nodded. "She just got married to another wolf two weeks ago. They just got back fom their honeymoon in Paris. They want to try for a baby."
"Can I visit her?" he gasped, so happy I was alost overwhelmed by his emotions.
"Only if she wants you to," I replied with a nod. "We have rules even visitors have to abide by."
Jerome nodded and handed me a business card. "My number and email. In case Carmel really does miss me."
"I'll give it to her and tell her I saw you," I promised with a gentle smile.
Cairo grinned at me as Jerome led us inside. "Do you ever think of yourself?" he asked, giving me a strange look.
I shrugged. "I put others before myself because I would expect them to treat me in the same way," I told him firmly. "Life should be respected and not mistreated."
He smiled again and yanked me aside too quickly for me to articulate. His ands pressed me to the wall by my shoulders, rough and urgent and yet kind and relaxed. His mouth decended upon mine just as I was about to ask what the hell he thought he was doing.
He was precise in his kiss, knowing just which angle to catch just right. His lips were warm and soft, slow in their languid movements. His tongue swept over my lower lip, causing me to tremble. He brought his hands up and cupped my face tenderly, thumbs brushing over my cheek bones.
God the man could kiss.
He backed off after almost a whole five minutes, his eyes glowing.
No, really. His eyes were glowing ultramarine blue, looking like a pair of fog lights on my face. I knew Faeries' eyes glowed when they were happy but had never seen it. Cairo's eyes were so bright I actually had to squint.
"Whoa," I said finally, staring up at him. "Now that was one hell of a kiss."
A smug grin bordering on conceited caused his eyes to lght up brighter. "Thank you," he murmured. "You look amazing when you blush."
Of course, that just made me blush harder.
"You do realise that was my first kiss, right?" I smirked, wondering if he was the type to kiss and tell.