Ambrose leaned his head against one of the square pillars at the top of the porch stairs.
He sighed as Barbara got into the car and her father started the engine.
If only she could stay with me.
If only I could stay with her.
If only I could see her tomorrow night.
Their car backed out of the driveway.
Dawn insinuated its colors into the sky, banishing the night.
Ambrose closed his eyes.
Must get inside.
He opened his eyes, just as their car headed on down the road, leaving him alone.
Be safe, Barbara.
He stumbled and tripped back into the house and returned to Kevin’s room.
Ambrose opened the door.
Just as Kevin let loose a skin-piercing howl.
Something about that sound hit Ambrose’s nerves all wrong. He wanted to turn tail and run back to Raven’s house.
Then, he thought about Barbara.
He sighed and drudged himself over to Kevin’s side.
“I’m here, Kevin.” He patted the werewolf’s shoulder. “I’m here.”
He called me damaged.
Robin leaned his head back and listened to the clacking of the train’s wheels.
Well, Isellta. I ain’t so sure about the insipid immaturity part. Heck, I don’t even know what insipid means. I just know it ain’t any form of compliment.
But you’re right.
I am damaged.
I thought I knew you.
I thought you loved me.
How could I have been so wrong about you?
I should have known better.
I should have known that you’re just another fey.
Just like any other fey.
A coldblooded liar playin’ cruel games.
I wonder how many other men you played catch and release with.
Robin’s chest hurt.
I’m sure I weren’t the only one.
He wanted to scream and/or cry. Possibly both.
With that face and that body, I bet you have a whole list of…of…
Robin opened his mouth and a heartbroken cry escaped.
“Why? I saw. I s…saw how you looked at me. You looked at me. You looked at me like I was somethin’ wonderful, like you loved me.” He wrapped his arms around his waist and hunched up as if he were sick. “You made me believe you loved me.”
How could you do this to me?
He side-glanced at his half-clear, half-clouded reflection in the train’s window.
And, in Robin’s mind, the window did not reflect the image of a scarred vampire. It showed the image of a male fey with soft, fair hair, a sweetly innocent face, and a long, slender body.
And he smiled.
In Robin’s imagination, Isellta smiled.
It made Robin hurt even more.
That stupid, sweet Isellta.
That Isellta I love…He was never real.
The whole time.
That whole freakin’ time he was spammin’ me.
He pressed his hands against his forehead.
A woman came up to him. “Hi! Do you mind if I sit in this chair next to you?”
“AAAARRRRRAAHH!” He stomped his foot on the floor.
“Okay. Never mind.” She disappeared to somewhere across the aisle.
Why does it hurt so much?
He cried hard, loud, and messy.
The woman moved to the furthest point from him without actually going into the next car.
I don’t need him. He wants to kick me to the roadside? Fine. I’ve got a pair of legs and they work just fine.
I can move on.
I’ll kick dirt and stones in his stupid face as I move on. I’ll find someone better. Someone who won’t play psycho mind games on me.
Someone who’ll love me.
Someone I can love in return.
Someone who sure as heck ain’t a fey.
Robin sat up and folded his arms across his chest. He looked at his reflection.
He saw a vampire with a scarred face and a ruined eye.
Half of his face was clear.
The other half clouded.
“Women tend to like men with clean, unscarred faces. And men are no different. No one wants to be with damaged goods.”
And that’s all I really am.