joannebest











lizz
Keeping myself busy while James was gone kinda sucked, no pun intended.
I was bemoaning his absence to myself because everyone else was sick and tired of hearing me whine about it out loud. Even I was getting sick of hearing me talk about him, I was making my own damn self cranky.
“Fuck this,” I said to my reflection as I applied a coat of Chanel red to my pouting mouth. That whole vampires-have-no-reflection thing was really nothing more than a parlor trick we used when it came in handy. I mean really, how the hell else would we put on makeup without a mirror?
“I’m out of here Rupert. I’ll be back before dawn.” Rupert, as usual, ignored me as he continued licking his paws. He really needed his nails cut but I refused to get him declawed; his nails were his protection whenever he snuck out, declawing my cat would be no different than me being defanged.
It was a beautiful fall night, the moon was half full surrounded by a sky full of stars, the temperature just chilly enough to wear my new favorite leather jacket. I do look good in red.
I decided to walk to the bar, it was just a few blocks away and I was hoping the walk would cool me down because I was nearing the point of fuming. I mean I get it, I understand that James has obligations, it comes with the title of Master Vampire but he’s been gone a little too long for my liking.
I miss him so much.
~
As I turned the corner I saw him. Leaning back against the cold brick wall we’d leaned against so many times, one hand in his front pocket, the other hand cupped around a cigarette.
“James! You’re back!” I couldn’t contain my excitement, my whole world changed when I was anywhere around him so I jumped up into his arms.
Only problem was he didn’t hold his arms out to catch me and I landed hard on my ass.
“Oh Elizabeth, you make it so easy to fuck with you,” he was laughing at me and if there is one think that drives me crazy is when someone laughs at me. But James?
“James?”
“Come on Lizzie, I know you’re a little slow on the uptake but what’s it going to take to penetrate that empty head of yours?” He took one last drag of his cigarette then flicked it near me. “Let me say this in words you can understand, leave me the fuck alone.”
Without waiting for an answer James turned his back on me and walked away.
“James?” I tried calling after him but nothing came out. He’d shocked me into silence.
I stood frozen in shock. This made no sense.
Something was off. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but there was no way in hell James would speak to me like this.
Even at his worst, he wouldn’t, he couldn’t, not my James.
As I watched him walk away from me, crossing the street into the cemetery I replayed the scene in my head. He’d been gone before but he always came back and we always-
“Wait a minute,” I mumbled. “That son of a bitch! I’m going to kill him.”
I tore after him hoping I could keep my temper in check long enough to find out where James was before I kicked his twin brother’s undead ass.
~
Of course they were identical because my life was turning into one big cliché. Unlife. Whatever.
My mind was churning as I dashed after him wondering why James neglected to mention his brother was his twin brother.
I didn’t take kindly to being made to look the fool but trying to pass himself off as the dick-version of James really pissed me off.
He was so cocky as he walked away he didn’t even notice me until he was flat on his back.
I have to admit the sound of his head bouncing off the ground gave me more pleasure than it should have.
Grabbing him by the collar as I straddled him to hold him down, I leaned into his face , I couldn’t believe how much he looked like James. Speaking of…
“Where’s your brother you fucking asshole?”
I was pissed. Anger is a good strength multiplier, as much as he struggled he couldn’t get loose from my grip.
“Lizzie, come on, calm down! I was joking, lighten up!” He was laughing again, bad for him.
I had caught him off guard when I first dove at him out of the darkness but it was the knife I held to his throat more than me holding him down. I pulled back a little, blade with me, and punched him in the mouth with my other hand.
“Ow!” He was still laughing and I was not happy. “Knock it off Liz, I was just fooling around!”
“First of all, fuck you,” I said calmly. “Second of all,” I punched him again. “And thirdly, where’s your brother?”
He looked at me like I was nuts as my knife was now perilously near his own.
“Hey! Watch where you’re pointing that thing! And what are you talking about?”
The last shred of control I had over my temper was about to snap.
You called him for help, what was it this time? What did you do now? You know he always comes running to your rescue whenever you call him to get you out of your latest mess, grow the fuck up already!”
I gave him the glariest glare I could muster. “Now where is he?”
James’s face stared at me, pale and serious, but it was his twin brother’s voice that came out of his mouth.
“Lizzie, I didn’t call James. That’s why I’m here, I can’t get in touch with him.”
lizzz
AUTHORS NOTE: Lizzie and James have been working undercover, I was inspired today by my deliciously evil muse Alice, so here is, as Alice says a “fragment”…because Muses know special things…

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biting cherry
I was tossing back a shot of Captain Morgan when James walked in.
A shiver raced through my body and I attributed it to the spicy rum sliding down my throat.
I’m sure it had nothing to do with his scent, which was presently tickling my nose.
I sneezed.
“Bless you.”
James slid the empty bar-stool beside me closer to the bar and leaned over, grabbing a bottle of beer as if he owned the place.
Oh yeah, that’s right, he did.
The club was empty right now, it was after hours and everything was shut down for the night.
It was just the two of us, a rarity these days and something my girl-parts were dying to take advantage of. Most of those vampire myths I’d heard before I became one were, for a large part, myths and nothing more, but my enhanced senses were going crazy at the nearness of James. He made me squirmy.
I turned toward him raising an eyebrow in his direction.
“What?” James brought the bottle to his mouth.
drinkingbeer
My eyes fixed on his throat as he swallowed his beer.
“Is it wrong that I want to sink my teeth deep into your neck?” I asked with feigned innocence.
He sputtered for half a second then recovered, sending me a dirty look in return.
I was still annoyed with him and his all-too-frequent disappearing acts. He’d turned my life upside down and this damn steady diet of blood was really making me cranky.
I missed food. Sure I could eat anything I wanted but nothing quelled my hunger except blood. Particularly if said blood belonged to James.
Food wasn’t the only thing I missed but James had recently issued a strict hands-off policy until I got this whole vampire-thing down.
And that was a huge bone of contention between us.
The only bone between us, I might add, and it was driving me insane. I don’t know what pissed me off more, the fact that he thought abstinence was gonna somehow make me a ‘better’ vampire or the fact that it didn’t appear to be bothering him at all.
Because it was bothering me a real fucking lot.
Damn, his scent was driving me crazy!
“You’re unfair and a tease,” I muttered knowing full well he’d hear me. “Pussy.”
James slammed the now-empty beer bottle on the bar and grabbed my barstool spinning me so fast I practically flew into his lap.
His hands grabbed my arms to steady me but his strong legs held me as captive as the stare he gave me.
“What is your problem Lizzie?” He spit the words out one by one, the fire in his eyes belying his tone of voice. “You know it has to be this way for now. It has to be. For now.”
We had been nit-picking each other to death lately, and we both knew it was his stupid no-sex rule driving us nuts.
He had this new stupid idea that sex would somehow get in the way of his self-appointed mentoring. Which makes absolutely zero sense to me and to make it even worse he refuses to tell me the whys.
All he tells me is, since he is my mentor, we have to try and keep our attraction on ice until I mastered Vampire 101. Some kind of malarkey about Rules and Blood Lines and some bullshit about how fucking each others brains out could possibly jeopardize some ancient power struggle family thing, none of which sank in because I wasn’t paying attention, I couldn’t take my eyes off of his fleshy bottom lip and the way his mouth moved when he said certain words.
“Lizzie? Are you even listening to me?”
His voice was a mix of exasperation, affection, and that ever-present husky growl.
In other words, he sounded like pure sex.
I let out a loud sigh. This sucked. I can’t see this hands-off policy lasting too long but apparently I had no choice.
Time to put on my big girl panties if I ever wanted James to rip them off again. Time to suck it up. Knock off the sulk and whine. Learn that poem and get this how-to stuff out of the way so we could get back to the fun bits again.
Later, when I looked back at this moment, I could only blame myself for everything that followed. If only I’d listened to that uneasy voice whispering in my ear that something was off, we could have avoided a lot of trouble.
Instead I resolved to get with the schooling so we could move on to the extracurricular activities.
Despite my best intentions, I still had a hard time tearing my eyes away from his mouth.
handonchest
TO BE CONTINUED



walking in snowbleedingrose38424_1435607543829_5877632_n[1] snownight
I sat in my car alone arguing with myself.
I was torn.
Part of me wanted to turn the key and drive right the hell out of that stupid parking lot but I knew I couldn’t. My band was doing a set that night and they couldn’t exactly play without a lead singer.
Part of me was looking forward to seeing James. Another part of me was trying hard to stop that.
A shiver shook me as I noticed the fat wet snowflakes beginning to fall on my windshield.
There were a million reasons why I shouldn’t be looking forward to seeing James but none of them mattered when I had to sing in his club in less than an hour.
It’d been awhile since the last time I saw him and an image of James flashed through my brain.
He had a way of cutting right through all my bullshit and it drove me up a wall.
He also had the sexiest mouth I ever saw and a wave of sense-memory crashed over me hard just as a car pulled into the parking lot across the street.
The snow was falling harder and I cursed the entire night.
There was no way out of the gig but by the unusual overwhelming availability of parking the place was dead tonight.
The rest of my band was inside but no other cars were here except for the bartender’s.
And the one that just pulled in.
A figure partially obscured by the snow neared my car and I imagined the crunch of the snow under his feet.
Because I knew it was James.
Before spotting his leather-jacket, before he called my name, before snow crunched underfoot and his bare knuckles knocked on the window.
For some reason, with James, I always know.



et cetera