I regained conciousness in the same room as before. Jake was standing anxiously by the end of my bed, his eyes dark with worry. Slowly, aching from the poison and mostly-healed injury, I sat up.
"You should rest.." His voice cracked a little and he looked away from me.
"I'm fine Jake, honestly, I've had a lot worse." The worst part was, I had. All thanks to my 'job'. Jake met my gaze with worried eyes. I got out of the bed and put my arms around him, smothering the urge to wince. I wasn't entirely healed just yet. After a few moments, he hugged me close again. "Don't scare me like that okay?" He muttered into my hair. I laughed, biting back against the remanents of pain still lingering in my veins. "I'll do my best, Jake."
He eventually grinned reluctantly. We always did make each other smile. It was like we were mirrored in each other. Jake was the only person who made me feel real even now. I felt like I burned brighter when he was there. Jake's face softened as he looked at me.
"I mean it though Asha, you scared me.."
I put my hand gently on his cheek, capturing his eyes. "You don't need to be scared for me Jake. I can protect myself now and I am not going to leave you without bringing hell down on anyone trying to take me away first."
A smile flickered across his face as one arm slid round my waist. He didn't break eye contact as the atmosphere changed from light-hearted to charged. He leaned in, one hand tilting my face to meet his as our lips brushed. Slipping my arms around his neck, I kissed Jake properly, and was pleased when he returned it, his lips curving into the lop-sided smile I loved. It was a long time before we broke away, leaning our foreheads together, eyes closed, as we used to. For the first time since I had been turned, I felt peaceful and more human than vampire.
Jake kissed my neck gently, his arms around my waist, pulling me close to his body. I grinned, not entirely innocently and kissed him lightly on the lips before speaking.
"Jake.. well, theres something you might want to know.. I'm not exactly a normal vampire."
He mirrored my grin. "I wouldn't kiss any old vampire like that."
I hit him playfully, with no force at all behind it. "Behave you, I'm trying to be serious here!"
He laughed, then replied in a relaxed tone, "I know, your eyes give it away. They should be red.. but they're still that gorgeous blue. You aren't the only one though. You might have seen I'm pretty strong? I'm quicker than average and I can manipulate energy to some extent."
I nodded. "Your eyes glow.. I can read minds.. and project thoughts.. But thats not what I meant. I mean I'm on the run for a reason."
Jake tilted his head slightly, a mannerism I knew well; he was intrigued.
"You might have heard of the Shadow..?" I said, sighing a little.
A confused frown flickered across Jake's face as he processed this. "Yes but I don't- wait... are you telling me that you're the Shadow?"
I nodded, looking down. There was a long pause.
"Thats incredible." Jake grinned.
My head shot up, completely stunned.
"You are a super-sexy, wickedly dangerous and notorious bounty hunter with psychic powers who also happens to be a vampire. Who is now on the run. And I just got to kiss you.. " He grinned. "Sorry but that is every nerdy guy's dream.
He laughed as I took another playful swipe at him. "So you don't mind?" I said, stunned.
"Are you kidding?! Its awesome! How did you managed to get in and out of so many places without getting caught?"
I laughed "Mind tricks, seducing the guards, and knocking a lot of people out."
Jake grinned at me. "I really am the luckiest guy on the planet."
I shook my head. "I'm the lucky one Jake. But what are we going to do? The Council will know where we are by now"
"Fancy a run?"