Barbara closed the door.
Ambrose grabbed her and pushed her up against the wall. He snarled. “And yet another turtleneck. Why? Why would you come here? Why now?” His breath caught in his throat as her scent filled his head.
“You didn’t answer your phone. I was worried about you.”
“You should have been worried about yourself. I’m not safe. I’m dangerous. I’m…I’m so hungry.”
She bared her wrist and offered it to him.
He took it without a word. His fangs pierced her skin. He moaned with pleasure as he drank her blood.
The blood high came on too fast.
Ambrose woke up in his bed. His headache was gone and his hunger was sated. For now. But his day exhaustion lingered in the back of his head. He sat up with a certain amount of difficulty.
Barbara was still there. She was sitting at the desk with her back to him.
“You’re still here?”
She glanced back at him. “Oh, good! You’re awake. I noticed your broken phone. I was just trying to see if there was any way to fix it.”
He stumbled over to her.
She contemplated the cell phone’s bits and shambles. “I don’t think it can be fixed. What did you do? Step on it.”
“Several times and very hard.”
“Too bad. You’ll have to get a new one.”
He grabbed her chair to keep his balance. “Why did you stay?”
She looked up at him.
“I bit you. Why didn’t you leave me?”
“Well, at first I was too shocked to run. I’ve never had a vampire bite me before. It was more painful than I’d expected it to be.”
She shrugged. “Then, I stayed because I needed to give you a message from Sammy.”
“What is it?”
“He read through all of your paperwork.” She giggled. “Yes, that whole stack in only two days.”
“Huh. That has to be some sort of record.”
“Oh, it is. He wants to meet you. You know, for an interview.”
“Tonight at seven.”
“Well, then. I guess I’d better get my sleep.” He reluctantly let go of the chair and wobbled his way back to the bed. He flopped onto his back, closed his eyes, and sighed. “I trust you can find your way to the door.”
“There was another reason why I stayed.” She walked over to the bed.
He pushed himself up into an unsteady sit.
“I didn’t get a chance to tell you. It may have ended on a bad note, but I had a great time the other night.”
“I had a great time too.”
“I want to see you again.”
He rubbed his forehead as if that would make the exhaustion go away. “No. We can’t. We shouldn’t. I’m a predator and you’re my prey. You’ll just wind up dead in my hands. I should let you go.”
He lowered his hand. “You should find someone who isn’t me. Find someone who won’t leave white marks on your skin, who won’t fantasize over hurting you.”
“You’re right. I should.” She stuck her face close to his face. “And you should give me a fair chance to make up my own mind.”
“Give me three more dates to decide if this relationship is worth pursuing. Let me decide if I want to dump you into the landfill of unwanted lovers/boyfriends. Don’t just tell me what you think I should do.”
He stared at her, completely flabbergasted.
She smiled like a million suns. “I’ll see you tonight at seven.”
And she left.