Anthem from Chess, Anthony Booker Washington, Booker, Carmen, CharlotteCarrendar, fight., Josh Groban, LadyBelz, life, love, misunderstanding, music, pool party, Shane, Shane Williamson, vampires, writing
That got a laugh out of her, despite the seriousness of the situation. She shook her head and allowed him to take her hand. He led her from the cell, closing the door behind them and took her up the stairs, to her room and opened the door.
“After you, Love.”
“Thank you, kind sir.” she grinned, stepping into the room and waiting for him to close the door behind him. Not giving one whit for her modesty (because honestly, she wasn’t ashamed of her body), she stripped herself naked before him and went into the shower. She turned on the water and tested the temperature until it was warm before she stepped under the spray. She tilted her head back to rinse away the blood that had gotten caught in her hair, letting the water wash it down the drain.
He tried to look confident in the face of what questions Booker and Dyna may have, and he saw his three charges were now relaxing by the pool. Jarvis strode over to Shane and leaned in saying;
“Carmen explained everything, dude. But I don’t think she knows a hell of a lot about David and his crew. It’s still an issue, man.” He said, taking a sip from his beer, and exhaling, while Misty and Bianca watched on with a growing concern. Shane had still yet to be formerly introduced to Booker and Dyna, and took this moment to put on a brave face and…face them.
“Shane Williamson, its a pleasure to meet you both. Welcome to our home.” He extended his hand to Booker, and hoped he would shake it.
“Tony, behave. Do you want Carmen to smack you with the newspaper again?” Dyna asked. Mary’s eyes widened comically.
“She actually did that?” she wondered.
“He peed on her favorite sweater.” Dyna replied, looking at Booker, who didn’t look the least bit embarassed.
“Just protecting my girls, you know!” Booker stated. There was a change in the air and Shane stepped out on the patio, wearing his “Kiss the Cook” apron once more. It looked as if he’d changed his clothes, but Tony could smell Carmen all over him. He resisted the urge to growl. Jarvis went to speak to Shane quietly before Shane nodded in reply and headed toward Dyna, Booker and Mary. He held out his hand to Booker.
“Shane Williamson, its a pleasure to meet you both. Welcome to our home.” Booker got to his feet, pleased to note he towered over Shane by a couple of feet and took his hand. He began to squeeze hard, hoping to break a couple of bones in the process.
“Pleasure. I’m Anthony. Friends call me Booker. That’s Dyna. You know Mary.” Booker stated in his no-nonsense voice.
Carmen stepped out on the patio a few moments later, having showered and changed herself.
She noticed the confrontation between Shane and Booker and glared at her friend.
“Anthony Booker Washington, what the hell do you think you’re doing?” she demanded, hands on her hips and glaring so fiercely it made the wolf in Booker lay down and start to whine. He released Shane’s hand and ducked behind Dyna.
“Just sayin ‘hi’ and shit. No harm done.” he murmured.
“Try that shit again and I’ll beat your ass with a newspaper!” Carmen glared, moving to Shane’s side. She took his hand and massaged his fingers. “You okay?” she asked her lover with some concern.
Shane winced slightly when the tower of a man known as Booker started to crush Shane’s hand with his menacing grip. “Pleasure. I’m Anthony. Friends call me Booker. That’s Dyna. You know Mary.”
“Aieeeee…how nice.” Finally getting his hand back from Booker’s paw of a hand and rubbing it himself, before he heard his love’s commanding voice float in from behind him.
“Anthony Booker Washington, what the hell do you think you’re doing?”
“Finding out how many bones in my hand I think.” Shane answered, as Carmen was threatening to thwap Booker with a rolled up newspaper. Bianca and Misty were both giggling insanely at the look on Booker face and his excuse to what he just did to Shane. The D.A was more embarrassed than hurt, when Carmen cooed her concern and massaged his sore hand. “I bet he doesn’t know his own strength.” Shane tried to cover up for the hurt he was feeling. Not the big man now, not with Booker towering over them.
“Has everyone got enough beers? Booker, want a protein shake…or a steroid smoothie?”
At that Carmen’s glare went up a notch and Booker actually whimpered. “I’m sorry, okay?” he muttered.
“Sorry isn’t going to cut it, Booker! You could have broken his hand!”
“That’s not all I’d break.” he murmured, but she heard him anyway.
“What was that?” she glared, eyes burning red in her rage. Dyna moved out of the line of fire as Carmen stalked toward her friend.
“Come on, Carm. I’m just lookin out for my number one girl!” Booker whimpered, backing away from Carmen.
“What the hell am I? Chopped liver?” Dyna exclaimed. Booker now had two angry women on his case. He continued to back away from them, not even noticing that he was nearing the edge of the pool.
“Ladies…I’m only looking out for you. You know that.”
“I’m pretty damn sure Cupcake and I can take care of our damn selves, you big ape!” Dyna glared as she and Carmen advanced on him. He took another step back and met with empty air. With a shout, he tumbled backward into the water with a loud splash. With a nod of satisfaction, Dyna and Carmen slapped a high five and went back to the others, Carmen moving to Shane’s side immediately.
“We have something to say and it affects nearly everyone here.” Carmen announced, looking at Shane.
Carmen decided to be the first to raise the subject of the evening that Shane was hoping to avoid.
“We have something to say and it affects nearly everyone here.”
Coughing, Shane eyed each of them, and then he decided to open up.
“Not sure how many of you are familiar with Ghost…aka David Razor. He was something of a general in one of the vamp world of Derry. Turns out, that he wants more than just the usual kickbacks that he would get from various members of the police department. I admit, I used his services myself, that is until recently. Now, I am not too sure how much Carmen has told you about us, but…we haven’t had the easiest romance. I admit…yes, I tried to kill her myself. But love does make a man do strange things.” He placed his arm around Carmen protectively. Looking at his charges, he could see they were nodding.
Bianca was first to speak.
“He’s trying to get enough behind him to take you down, Shane. Its spreading like wildfire in the clubs and the strip. I even got a text from him wanting me to meet him at Galtem’s club. I didn’t go of course, not that big an idiot.”
“I know they got Matt working for them.” Jarvis piped up, a long time friend of Matt’s. “Don’t think he is too happy about it either.”
Shane knew about this, but then he gave his real reason for concern.
“It’s not me I am worried about..it’s Carmen. I don’t want her harmed. I need your help to protect her out there.”
She took comfort in Shane’s arm around her shoulder, as Booker was hauling his ass from the pool. He squished his way over to the group in time to hear Shane’s declaration.
“What did you get her into?” he demanded.
“Back off, Booker!” Carmen scowled. “I don’t blame Shane for any of this!”
She was fierce in her protection of Shane from Booker’s attitude and she was beginning to get sick of it. “If you’ve got something to say about Shane and our relationship, I suggest you spit it out right fucking now!” she demanded.
“Well you gotta admit, none of this would be happening if it wasn’t for him.” Booker stated. Carmen wanted to hit him. “He ruins your life and now all of a sudden, you’re fucking him? What kind of shit is that?”
“Tony!” Dyna exclaimed, wide-eyed with shock.
“No, it’s gotta be said, Dyna and I guess I’ll be the bastard to say it.” Booker scowled. He looked at Shane who still had an arm around Carmen. “You’re going to get her killed! And there is no place on this Earth you can hide from my wrath if that happens.”
“I think you should leave.” Carmen whispered, hurt and anger coloring her tone.
“Are you serious? You’re going to choose him over your friends, who’ve been with you since day one?” Booker demanded. Carmen stared at him, not backing down. He glared at Shane. “This is all your fault!” he growled. He moved toward Shane, claws extended, but a jolt of electricity blew him back, slamming him into one wall of the house hard enough to crack the plaster. He gasped in pain as he regained his feet. Carmen was standing in front of Shane, bolts of electricity leaping back and forth between her fingers. It seemed she’d retained a few of her dark fae powers depsite the vampire blood running through her veins.
“Booker…I love you, you’re my best friend. But Shane is my mate and I won’t let you hurt him. He has my loyalty and love and I’ll kill anyone who tries to hurt him, friend or not. Do you understand me?” Carmen’s voice was as deadly as a viper and twice as poisonous. His wolf once again whined in protest and he got down to one knee in supplication.
“Yes, Alpha.” he murmured, not liking the position he’d been placed in.
“Booker…I love you, you’re my best friend. But Shane is my mate and I won’t let you hurt him. He has my loyalty and love and I’ll kill anyone who tries to hurt him, friend or not. Do you understand me?” Carmen said with conviction, while Shane looked beyond angry, he was also feeling humiliated. What was it when your mate has to step in front of you, when that was supposed to be his job?
Jarvis and the two girls stood in together, as Shane took another step back. He was upset, there was no mistake. Eyes red rimmed, he then said. “Jarvis…can you check on the steaks, I need to go attend to something in my office.” Misty and Bianca then watched Shane head inside…knowing it was to cool his jets, and not have him lash out in a rage of fury. Bianca chewed her lip, and Misty ran off after him, leaving Carmen to deal with the others.
“Dyna…take Booker home, please. I’m really not in the mood for this shit tonight.” Carmen was holding her emotions in by the skin of her teeth. She could feel Shane’s anger and upset and she wanted to cry.
“We’ll talk tomorrow, Cupcake.” Dyna stated, grabbing Booker by his arm and hauling him bodily from the yard.
“Carmen?” Mary wondered. She had been silent up until now, and was worried for her employer.
“I’ll see you at work in a week, Mary.” Carmen stated. Mary nodded and followed Dyna and Booker to the driveway.
She took a deep breath and knew she was inches away from breaking down completely. She looked at the two remaining vamps. “It’s too close to dawn for you to leave. I’m sure you all have stayed before. Help yourselves.” she told them, voice stilted.
She turned on her heel and headed into the house.
Bypassing Shane’s study, knowing he was with Misty, Carmen went to her room, closing the door quietly behind her. She crawled onto her bed, not even bothering to undress and pulled her pillow into her arms, burying her face in its softness. She could smell Shane’s scent on it and the tears she’d been holding at bay finally fell.
Shane was standing in front of the fire place, though it was not lit, and he had his head bowed, as Misty wandered in, her face riddled with concern for her father figure. She ran her fingers along his desk, like she was playing a keyboard, then came to stop as Shane turned his head slightly.
“I couldn’t stay out there.”
“I know…and I know why.”
Shane turned and sighed as he pointed to the back patio. “See what that brute tried to do?” Shane’s voice filled with annoyance, a cold look in his eyes. Misty came closer and she reached for his hand. “He’s Carmen’s friend, and I guess he just wasn’t expecting all this. You gotta admit its a lot to take in.”
Shane acknowledged that, but still, the real kicker was when she defended him, and not the other way around. “I was polite…wasn’t I?” Misty nodded and agreed. “I seen you when you aren’t polite. Shane, is this woman making you soft?’ That was something that Shane had not thought about. He then realized that he admitted to Carmen that he was scared of losing her. Now his masculinity was in question. He really didn’t like it.
“No…just…no.” Shane replied, moving to the chess table and toying with a pawn. Misty cocked her head. “You don’t sound to sure of that.” Shane’s head whipped up and he bared his fangs, clearly not enjoying this conversation. “I’m sure!” Misty shook her head. “Its harder to lie to yourself than to others.”
The vampire stood solemnly, and then he looked at the time. “Better go get a cot. Light soon.” His voice was a bit softer, but it was an order. Misty sighed and then moved in to kiss his cheek, before heading out the den and downstairs to join the others. Shane was left alone, and his face showed he was conflicted. He picked up the edge of the chess board and then threw it in the air, its pieces going in all directions, smashing upon the floor.