Mercy's Debt (Montgomery's Vampires Series Book One) (2 page)

BOOK: Mercy's Debt (Montgomery's Vampires Series Book One)
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I
was scared, an overwhelmed small-town girl lost in a big, bad metropolis. I wanted nothing more than to hop on the next flight back to Florida.

B
ut I didn’t. I couldn’t bear to imagine what it would have done to Grams if I returned to the trailer park a coward. And so I remained in San Francisco, making it my new home.

F
our years later, and I could still attest that staying in California was the best decision I’d ever made. Still, in spite of how far I’d come since leaving Pelville, I was ashamed of my irresponsibility and how I’d allowed myself get into such a financial bind.

I’d been living
on student loans for the past few months, eschewing work so I could do well in school during my final year. At least my sacrifice had paid off; I graduated as one of the top of my class,
summa cum laude
.

I’d
always naively assumed that I’d land a job as soon as I was furnished with a degree, as if there’d be a fairy godmother waiting for me after the graduation ceremony with an offer for a stellar six-figure job in a private practice.

As a part of this
deluded fantasy, I’d accept my fairy godmother’s proposition, later becoming one of the most respected psychologists in town. I’d live in the trendiest part of the city in a sweet little historical cottage. I’d remodel it so finely that my friends would come over and gasp, “You
really
decorated all of this yourself?” In my home office, I’d have a wall filled with awards and plaques that had been given to me by my fellow scholars. I’d arrive at work each day dressed in designer clothes that, while stylish, were serious enough to show that I meant business. I’d be in such high demand that I’d have to turn patients away because my schedule was just too busy. I’d sufficiently ease the emotional turmoil my patients faced, leaning back in my expensive leather desk chair while noncommittally murmuring, “Hmm, I see. How does that make you feel?”

None of this ever
happens to anyone, though, does it? Life never pans out so easily in the same way that it does in the movies. But how I wished it did.

On the days I felt
particularly discouraged, I’d question whether I should have just gone to a state school like many of my high school classmates had done. They may not live in San Francisco, or have elaborate diplomas printed on the highest quality linen, but they also probably weren’t in debt up to their eyeballs.

To hell with
university bragging rights. And to hell with my fairy godmother. What
I
really needed was a salaried job with benefits.

T
he story was always the same each time I went job-hunting.
You’re a smart girl, Mercy. You have a great degree, and lots of potential. But… you have no experience whatsoever. Next!

It was time to put on my big girl pants and face reality. I was in serious financial trouble. I needed to find a way to make money. No, not
just
money.
A lot
of money.

Immediately.

 
 
TWO
  

 

Coming in from the chilly air, I yanked open the front door to the apartment and ran into my roommate, Elizabeth. Literally. Our bodies collided, and her pert breasts squashed against my ample C-Cups, knocking me a bit silly. We twittered awkwardly as we pulled apart, making dismissive comments about our clumsiness.

I’d seen Liz naked dozens of times during the past year that I’d shared an apartment
with her, so the awkwardness of our chest-bumping did not last long.

Liz
used to come into the bathroom each day to shower for work as I was finishing getting ready for school. She’d perch on the edge of the tub, telling animated stories about the clients she had at the salon she worked at as a hairdresser. She’s take her time testing the water with her long, alabaster fingers. When the temperature was to her liking, she’d let her terrycloth bathrobe slide down on her lithe body and crumple on the floor. She’d then step into the steamy shower, leaving behind one awestruck Mercy Montgomery.

That was our unspoken bathroom ritual.
It was
my
ritual, anyway. She would bathe, and I would inspect her glistening curves reflected in the mirror as I blow-dried my long, chocolaty tresses. I examined her objectively as a classic representation of beauty, comparing her figure to mine with a curiosity that was faintly lustful and utterly void of malice.

I’d
always considered myself an avid heterosexual, a devoted lover of menfolk and all the delicious treasures they have to offer below the belt. Admittedly, I was envious of Liz’s perfection, but I observed her as one would view a nude Grecian sculpture in a respectable yet inadvertently lascivious museum. No doubt about it, Liz was a living work of art.

Liz
always pretended to be completely oblivious to my gaze greedily consuming her physique, but occasionally our eyes would meet in the mirror before we both turned away shyly. She liked to show as much as I liked to watch. Look but never touch. That was the game.

One time
, I’d neglected to put my bathrobe in the dryer the night before I had an early morning class. As a consequence, it was too damp to wear, and I had no choice but to get ready naked. While I was applying makeup, I reached for the mascara on the counter, accidentally bumping it. It fell to the floor and hit the ceramic tiles with a
whack
, causing Liz to turn her head in my direction. I got down on all fours, reaching for the mascara that was just slightly out of touch. The farther away I stretched, the more my hips pulled open, until my intimate region was fully exposed to her. When I got to my feet, the skin around Liz’s neck was flushed, and the tips of her breasts were drawn into rigid points. Apparently, she liked to watch, too.

Liz touched my goose-fleshed arm, c
oaxing me back to reality.

She
’d just made love with her boyfriend, David; that much was obvious. She only wore his t-shirts after sex. I was certain of that, just as much as I was certain that she was also nude from the waist down.

Even after three years, Liz and David
still went at it like a couple who’d only just started dating. On more than several occasions, I’d heard them moaning through the wall as they pleasured each other in ways I could only speculate. Their heated lovemaking would be followed by an abrupt silence, and then a few moments later Liz would meander into the kitchen wearing one of David’s tees, her taut little rear peeking out from the bottom hem. She’d lift up high on her tiptoes and reach into the cupboard, grabbing down a glass which she’d ritualistically fill with tart grapefruit juice. Her swollen vagina would flash out at me from underneath the shirt, freshly corrupted and glistening. Most occasions, unless she had swallowed I presumed, David’s pearly liquid would trickle out from the temporary gap his sex had burrowed.

I
concluded long ago that if I was allowed only one word to describe Elizabeth, it would be
brazen
. At twenty-seven, she was a few years older than I was, but I imagined that age had nothing to with it. With the amount of self-confidence Liz had, she’d probably emerged from the womb a vixen. I envied her confidence. And her horniness.

“Hey,” she said
worriedly, rubbing my arm. “Are you okay? You look you’ve seen a ghost.”

I
bit my lip and looked away, embarrassed, as if she’d been reading my mind. “Not really,” I said distractedly. “I just got a past due notice in the mail for my student loan. The bank is out for blood.”


Yikes.” Her tone was so gloomy that the debt could have been her own. She ran her delicate fingers through her chestnut tresses, blowing air out of her puffed-up cheeks. She had recently cropped ten inches off her mane on an impulse, and initially claimed that she loathed the new style. Her long hair had been beautiful, but I thought the pixie cut also suited her nicely. “How much do you owe?”

“A
hundred and eight thou, plus change,” I said, my stomach churning.


Shit,”
she spat, choking slightly on her grapefruit juice. “Wow. That’s, like, more than what some people pay for their entire house.”

She
wasn’t helping matters. “Tell me about it.”


Wait,” she said, her auburn brows furrowing. “I’m confused. I thought Dewhurst had given you a scholarship.”

“They did, but it
only covered half the tuition each semester. Star athletes who put asses in stadium seats are usually the only students who receive full rides,” I said bitterly. “I still had to come up with about twenty-three thousand dollars each year. Plus, you know, I had to pay rent on a dorm room, and had books to buy on top of all my other expenses.”


What are you going to do?” she asked, nervously tugging at the ends of her shortened hair. It was kind of odd how she still played with her tresses like they were still long. She was reminiscent of a person suffering from phantom limb.

“I honestly don’t know,”
I sighed. “It’s not like I’m unemployed from lack of trying. No private practice will hire me. There aren’t any state job openings for newbies like me, with California being so bankrupt. I guess,” I said sarcastically, “I could always sell my blood.”

“Yah, right,” she snorted
. “You’d look like a raisin before you’d earn enough to make even
half
of a single loan payment.”

No
, Liz definitely wasn’t helping matters.

“Too bad I wasn’t a man,” I lamented. “Then I cou
ld sell sperm. It’s so unfair. Donating blood
hurts
. Men actually derive pleasure from jerking off, and they get to perv at nudie magazines while they do it.
And
they get paid for their efforts!”

“Bastards,” she joked.
“Oh,” she gasped, her snub nose crinkling. “Do you think they get to keep it after?”

“What?
Their semen? I think it’s self-replenishing, Liz. I’m fairly certain that they already have a new batch brewing in their balls even as they’re ejaculating. How nice for them,” I quipped sarcastically.

“No, not that,” she laughed, rolling her eyes
. “The
magazine.”

“Oh.
” I chuckled.

“As if any man would want to use it right after another man-” she made quotation marks with her fingers- “did the deed.
Bleh
.”

“Hmm
, I don’t know,” I muttered. Did they? The topic would have made for an interesting discussion in the human sexuality class I took during my freshman year. I could have even composed a paper on the subject, one which referenced the unconscious homoerotic feelings men experience for one another.

S
he shuddered. “The pages would be all stuck together.”

I
guffawed. Such judgment from a girl who had her boyfriend’s sperm dripping down her thighs. I could actually
smell
the saltiness of it as it heated against her skin. If Liz was anything, it was contrary.

Her
pensive stare focused on the bill in my hands. Lost in thought, she rotated the antique rose gold and amethyst ring around her finger. It was a family heirloom that she never took off.

“I got it!”
she screeched, snapping her fingers.


Christ
, Liz!” I said, clutching my chest. “I think you just scared a few years off of my life.”

“Sorry,
” she grinned. “I just got a tad excited. I have THE BEST idea for how you could earn some quick cash.”

“I already told you,” I said dr
yly. “We’re not growing pot in the closet.”

“Very funny,” she pouted,
folding her arms across her chest. I had mildly hurt her feelings by not taking her idea seriously.

“O
kay, gorgeous,” I said, placating her. “What’s this brilliant plan of yours?”

She unfolded her arms.
“Wits and tits,” she said cunningly.

“Umm

What
?”


Wits and Tits
,” she confirmed. “It’s a wet t-shirt contest they hold every Wednesday night down at that night club near Main. You know, Shwilly Pete’s? There’s a contest tonight, actually.”

I shook my head
. “
No way.
Like I want to go to a bar and flash my rack at a bunch of screaming frat boys. Great plan, but no thanks.”

“Hey, don’t make fun,” she sulked. “I would have done it long ago, but th
e contest is only open to students.”  She cupped her breasts, shaking them. “Clearly, my uneducated titties are not good enough for Shwilly Pete’s discerning tastes.”

Sh
e gave me an indifferent smile, but I could tell that she was annoyed. “But with jugs like these,” she said, feeling me up, “you’d be a shoo-in.”

BOOK: Mercy's Debt (Montgomery's Vampires Series Book One)
8.21Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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