Authors: Carys Weldon
I leaned up and kissed Chaos, letting those fingers that touched his lips slip into his hair, and wrap around the curls at the nape of his neck. His hair wasn’t long and shaggy like his brother’s. Not that I was comparing the two, really. But Leer had a Fabio thing going on, and Chaos, well, he had the demon control of ‘the source’ off of ‘Charmed’. Dark as night. Brooding presence. Sex appeal in a devilish shadow, if that makes sense.
I sure never thought far enough ahead to get some kind of hope for Leer. I was too caught up in Chaos. And really, Chaos and me, we just fit together.
Maybe that was something he liked about me? The fact that I wasn’t comparing or pitting him against his brother? There was enough of that sibling rivalry between them. I’d watched them both snagging each other’s girlfriends in the past. And maybe that was why I had avoided them like the plague. You know, good old self-preservation.
Ha. That’s a laugh, isn’t it? Little Miss Self-destruct was afraid of getting hurt or being used by them.
It didn’t matter. I’ve always lived on borrowed time.
So, there we were, kissing.
Chaos deepens kisses like he’s drinking in his last breath. He inhales you, pulls you against him and savors the body contact. There isn’t a part of him that doesn’t wrap around you. At least, that’s what it felt like to me.
He was swallowing me up, taking me into him, and we were fully dressed, right there on the street. But I didn’t want to be let go. I felt desperate to convey that to him.
And you know what? I wouldn’t have given one shit if he’d backed me up to that brick wall behind us, in broad daylight, and made love to me.
Right then and there, I thought
just take what you can get
. Whatever happiness he’s offering you, love it while he lets you.
He must’ve liked my train of thought. I felt him growl down deep in his chest. And I think I answered with a replying moan from deep in, too.
Nothing mattered at that moment, but that desire to just grab a little...I wouldn’t call it happiness. Maybe...snatching a little soul-feed?
I won’t say I loved him, then. At least, I didn’t admit anything to myself at the time, for fear of him horning in on my thoughts. But I needed him. And he wanted me. And Gaia knows I needed the protection of his arms around me, that feeling of being safe. I didn’t try to decipher my emotions.
Eventually, we came up for air. And he realized before I did that we were getting soaked. “Let’s get something to eat.”
Again, tugging me by the hand, he pulled me along. It felt good, like I belonged. You know, most people don’t realize how much they want to belong until they do. I was like that. Always thought I was a bit of a loner, ya know?
Not that I ever liked being lonely. Or ever dwelt on that much. When those feelings came in, I went looking for company. Sisters. Brothers. I didn’t care. Just so I didn’t have to think too hard on what was really going on inside me. Sometimes you don’t really wanna get that deep, even with yourself.
Facing your shortcomings is just too much, ya know?
We were in his backyard, so to speak, and he knew just the place to take me to, a cellar dive by the look of it. A stranger to the neighborhood never would’ve noticed the place. There was no sign above the stairwell, and no window in the door, and it wasn’t too far from the warehouse.
He tapped twice, waited a second, then tapped once. The door opened to show a flat faced, no nonsense thug. Without any expression whatsoever, he looked from Chaos to me and then backed up, letting us in.
The place had the feel of an underground booze club from the prohibition days. What were they called? Speakeasies? Real light background music, though, no stage or anything.
The lighting was yellow and low, leaving lots of room for shadows to play on the walls. Men leaned together, in twos and threes, plotting murder--I know because I could hear them. Damn ears. I reached up, covered my outside ear and ducked my head. I didn’t wanna know what they were up to. I didn’t wanna get eye contact with them.
And I cursed my snowy white hair. Evading glances by turning into Chaos, letting him wrap his arm around me, and steer me to a booth in the back, I asked, in my mind,
holy shit, what kind’ve place did you bring me to?
“Relax,” he whispered, kissing the top of my head, gesturing for me to slip into the seat. He slid in beside me and a second later, a waiter appeared. Italian mafia looking guy.
I watched him, wondering when
we’d gotten Italian garous in our neck of the woods. I could smell him well enough. Definitely a werewolf in human clothing. The whole place was filled with ‘em.
“What can I get ya?” He never looked right at us, but his voice had that New Yorker Hell’s Kitchen thing going on in it.
Chaos asked me, “Same as last night?”
What had I been drinking the night before? I bit my lower lip and shook my head. Whatever it was, it had stolen my memory.
Chaos looked up at the guy and said, “Why don’t you bring us a bottle of something that’ll work well with steaks. And then bring us the biggest, rarest you’ve got.”
In a zip, we were alone, and Chaos set an elbow on the table, turning to look at me, and said, “It wasn’t the booze that did that to you.”
“What? You drugged me?” It was supposed to be a joke.
He grinned. “Hardly, honey. That mug at the bar did, though.”
I wrinkled my nose over his word
. My word, actually, when I’d laid eyes on the thug at the door. I’d thought, geez, talk about an ugly mug.
Thinking back to the club I’d been at the night before, and the bartender, I asked, “Really?” All I could remember was coming in alone, taking a seat at the bar, ordering and nursing a couple of drinks, while watching the crowd. They had a dance floor. There was a packed house. Plenty to scam on. Nothing catching my eye in particular, ya know?
Shrugging, Chaos looked around. “I took care of it, though.”
That had me tipping my head forward, trying to look at his expression. “What do you mean...you took care of it?”
“Just what I said.” Real tightly, it crawled out of his lips.
I noticed that he had put one hand along the seat behind me, had his fingers in my hair--absent-like. But he squinted in the opposite direction of me, as the door opened.
Then he stiffened.
Of course, I looked. It was Leer, his brother. And looking too hot, too. Wearing black leather pants, a silk shirt and a black leather jacket. I didn’t dwell on the thought, but I’m not blind. And the smell of the guy was something to note, too.
It’s like some guys have the greatest chemistry with their aftershave. Or maybe, like Chaos, he didn’t need any extra enhancement. Whatever, he commanded attention too.
He was in the door by a step when his head jerked, his nostrils flared, and he skewered our booth with his gaze. Penetrating gold gleaming eyes.
Chaos didn’t move. Not one flinch. Not one inch.
Sure enough, Leer made a beeline for us. Stopped a foot from the table, propped a hand on his front pocket, real casual--too casual.
I couldn’t help but look up at him. He was standing right over us, exuding every bit of sex appeal that Chaos had--just a different picture. I was actually afraid to move.
Too many times, these brothers had got into scrapes--okay, brawls--that ended up with a whole place cleared out and dead. How they kept from killing each other, I dunno. And I damn sure didn’t wanna find out.
Leer smiled. Definitely a wolfish grin. And the feral gleam in his eye as it looked over my face--and what else he could see above the table--got nothing but stronger. Predatory.
He asked, almost idly, “Order yet?”
Chaos watched him like he wanted to kill him, like he definitely didn’t trust him.
Sure enough, Leer slid into the booth, on the other side of me, saying, “You won’t mind if I join you, then, will you?”
He didn’t wait for an answer. He turned directly to me and said, “Tee, isn’t it?”
That kind’ve floored me. I mean, I never would’ve guessed that he knew my name. Or maybe he’d been listening in? I turned a little red, thinking that he might’ve honed in on our little bathroom scene earlier.
I blanked my brain as much as possible, wondering if he knew what I thought of him. Hell, I didn’t know what I thought of him. To say I was feeling a bit confused sitting there between them is an understatement. I wasn’t sure if I was a pawn in a game or what. But it was like sitting between two sides of a mirror. One reflecting all the light in the room, and the other, Chaos, absorbing every shadow, drawing darkness in a tangible, tight-fisted, tight-lipped way.
I nodded, though, out of reflex. “Yeah.” I flashed him a bit of my teeth.
The fingers in my hair had gone still. Don’t know exactly when.
Leer snapped his fingers, the waiter appeared again, and he gave an order for a big, raw steak, too. It’s a garou thing. He also ordered a beer.
Stretching out beside me like he owned the place, Leer let his leg rub against mine, and I took it for what it was. Interest, an offer. So, I had a choice there. I knew it sure as shit. But I never thought twice on it. I put my hands under the table, slid one to Chaos’s thigh, then squeezed. My pinky reached to rub lightly against the manhood contained there. Just a tickle, but enough to let him know how I felt about the intrusion. That’s what I thought of it. You know, awkward. Bad timing.
“I heard you two hooked up last night.” Leer seemed to think something about that was funny, but that was explained a second later when he added, “I was a few minutes behind you, I guess.”
That got a grin out of Chaos, and I felt him relax beneath my hand. His fingers slipped through my hair again, and he pulled me close, whispered in my ear, “Don’t believe any of his shit.” But he thought it was funny, I could tell that.