Evan’s laugh didn’t wash down well with the three idiots. “Let me save you all some time. You won’t win an argument with Sam, and you won’t make her feel like she isn’t worthy of Jared or the position that she’ll soon have.”

“We do not wish to argue with anyone,” Ricardo assured him. “We simply wish to express our viewpoint.”

“And point out that Jared could do much better for himself than a common girl who can barely speak proper English,” said Marcia, huffing at me. “I suppose you are a product of drug addicts then, are you? I’ll bet you later became one, too. I’ll bet you went down the road of prostitution to pay for your addiction. I wouldn’t be surprised if that is how you came to be a vampire. You took the wrong type of client.”

I gasped as if in awe of her. “Wow, how did you guess that so accurately? Do something else. What shape am I picturing in my head?”

A loud laugh burst out of Evan while Antonio, Luther, and Sebastian chuckled silently. Even Bran and Kaiser appeared amused.


“You couldn’t come up with anything better? Seriously?” When she opened her mouth – most likely to insult me further – I raised a hand to stop her. “It’s all right, Marcia, no need to apologise. I’ve been called worse by better, if I’m honest with you.”

Rowan straightened in his seat. “I would appreciate it if you would not insult my partner.”

“Tit for tat, and all that,” I said, shrugging.

“How about you learn some manners,” suggested Marcia, sneering.

“How about you just act like adults?” I proposed. “What do you think?” I took another gulp of my NST. “There is, of course, the other option – you can piss off.” Rowan spluttered, apparently unused to anyone speaking to him that way. I looked at him sympathetically as he tried stuttering a comeback that made no sense. “Ah, is your battery running out?”

“Everything okay?” asked Jared as he returned to his seat.

Unsurprisingly, the three cheeky sods forced smiles and nodded at him.

But Jared wasn’t dumb. What did they say to you?

Most likely exactly what you’re thinking they said. There’s no point reproaching them. I’m not going to win them over unless I’m prepared to do some kind of power-demonstration. No way am I proving myself to three toffee-nosed twats.

Toffee-nosed? he repeated, amused.

In other words, they’re snobs.

After a three course meal and a lot of NSTs, most of the guests were up and dancing – even the three whiners, unbelievably. What inspired Damien to take the microphone and do a rendition of Michael Jackson’s ‘Billie Jean’, I wasn’t sure. But it had been a hell of a laugh watching him do the artist’s signature moves. My laugh kind of died when Magda got up and sang Peggy Lee’s ‘Fever’, staring at Jared the entire time. Did she have no shame?

Jared, however, didn’t look at her even once. Oh he was well aware that the song was for his benefit, but he was playing dumb and focusing totally on me. Maybe a big reason for that was he could sense the homicidal urges I was having.

Obviously having guessed her game, the squad had gathered around my table supportively; joking around to distract me. So when Magda approached, she had a hard time trying to make any sly comments over the noise they were making. But the bitch was persistent, and that persistence finally paid off.

I had to grit my teeth when I heard, “Jared, do you remember the time when you and I made love to that song?”

The feel of both mine and Jared’s anger shooting through my system almost had me throwing a fireball at her. But then Denny, who was standing in front of her, did the sweetest thing. He farted at her.

Now, having anyone fart at you would be bad. But as Denny was able – as one of his animal-mimic abilities – to release anal musk like a skunk…well, that was a bad moment for Magda. She nearly fell to her knees as the stench hit her. Her coughs and balks were drowned out by the laughs coming from me, Jared, and the guys. It was hard for me to stomach the smell, but the satisfaction I got from watching that bitch nearly pass out from a musky fart just purely diluted it. Even her consort looked like he wanted to laugh as he teleported her away − most likely because he disliked the attention she gave Jared and kind of thought of it as karma.

“Denny, I will love you forever for doing that,” I told him.

A beaming smile took over his baby-face. “I wasn’t about to let her get away with that remark.”

“It’s my turn next time,” declared Chico. At my quizzical frown, he huffed. “She can’t do shit like that to our Coach and think she’ll get away with it. That’s not how things work around here. Next time she tries something, she’ll find a dart in her ass. I might even ask Reuben to strengthen my gift before I do it. That way, she won’t just pass out, she’ll croak.” He said it all so casually, as if we were simply discussing the weather.

Aw. “You lot are the best.” At Jared’s growl, I quickly added, “Of course you’re the best of them all.” He snorted.

“How about a dance, Coach?” asked Max, his lips twitching. He’d said it purely to rile Jared. It worked.

“Not a f**king chance, Slaphead.” Jared possessively placed his hand on my thigh. Of course his reaction absolutely delighted Max, who instantly went into a fit of laughter. Feeling protective of Jared, I decided that a little crack of the whip to Max’s earlobe would be fun. I sucked the energy around me into my palms, and…and nothing. So I tried again. Nothing. Nothing f**king happened.

Sensing my confusion and anxiety, Jared turned to me. “What’s wrong?”

“I don’t know.” Again I tried to manipulate the energy, but again it didn’t work. So I tried shaping the energy into a ball instead…but still nothing. I was feeding on the energy in the same way that I always did, but I couldn’t do anything with it. “Shit.”

“What, what is it?”

“Something’s really wrong. My gift isn’t—” And then a burst of energy shot out of my palms, sending me and my chair flying backwards with the impact. Crashing into the wall behind me, I bounced out of my seat and fell on my hands and knees on the deck.

Jared was there in an instant. “What the f**k was that?”

“That was a tank of energy needing an outlet.” An outlet that I hadn’t been able to give it. Oh those f**king brothers had a lot to answer for.

Tags: Suzanne Wright Deep In Your Veins Vampires
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