He slid to his knees beside the bed, so I'd see his face. "I'm sorry, really, but . . ." He gave a small shrug. "You can't blame me. You cannot tell me that you have these violent, amazing, orgasms, then expect me not to tease you. It's me, Anita, you know I can't really help it."
He looked so boyish, so innocent. It was all an act. By the time I'd met Jason he'd been ridden hard and put up wet, and his innocence had been long gone.
He handed the drink back to me. "Forgive me, okay, maybe it's just envy."
"Don't go there," I said.
"Not of you," he said, "but hell if Asher's bite is that good, why didn't I get the full treatment?"
I tried to frown at him, and only half-succeeded. "You said it yourself, you're not his pomme de sang,you're only a loaner."
"And you're Jean-Claude's human servant, not Asher's, so why do you rate the full orgasmic blowout?"
He had a point, a good point. I shrugged. "I think the ardeuroverrode things. I don't know. I guess I'll have to ask them when they wake up." Why would Asher do this to me? Had it been on purpose? I knew only Asher could do with the mere taking of blood what most men couldn't do with their whole bodies. Asher had done something to me that Jean-Claude alone couldn't duplicate. The memory of it tightened my body, and I had just enough time to shove the bottle at Jason before I threw myself back on the bed.
It wasn't as violent as the last time, and Jason made no move to try and touch me. I guess he'd had enough scratches. When I was done, panting on the bed, with the sheet down around my stomach, and my vision clearing, Jason asked from the far side of the bed, "Is it safe now?"
"Shut up," I managed.
He laughed and bounced back on the bed. He raised me up with one hand and offered the bottle with the other. "Lean against the pillows, drink this slowly, I'm going to put some bandages on my arms."
"Antiseptic cream, too," I said.
"I'm a werewolf, Anita, I don't get infections."
Oh. "Fine, then why bother with bandages at all?"
"I don't want to bleed all over my clothes, and I can't let the police see me like this."
"Police, why police?"
"That was who was on the phone when you woke up. That is who's been calling for about the last hour. Lieutenant Storr and Detective Zerbrowski have both called, and have requested your presence. The lieutenant made noises about coming to find you and drag you out of my bed."
"How did he know I was in your bed?"
He grinned at me in the door of the bathroom, opening it wide so the light framed his body. "I don't know, maybe he guessed."
"Jason, you did not tease Dolph, please tell me you didn't."
He put a hand to his chest. "Me, tease someone?"
"Sweet Jesus, you did."
"I'd call him back ASAP, if I were you. I'd hate to have the SWAT team crash our little party."
"We are not having a party."
"I don't think your lieutenant friend will believe that if he finds us na**d in the bedroom together." He held his arms up. "Especially if he sees this."
"He's not going to see your arms, or any other part of you. Just give me my clothes and I'll get out of your hair."
"And if you have another flashback while you're driving, what then? And let me just add that I've been donating blood to vampires a lot longer than you have. I know how hard it can be when you lose as much as you lost. You may feel fine, but if you overdo it, you'll get dizzy again, and nauseous. That wouldn't be good at a crime scene, would it?"
"Dolph does not let civilians at his crime scenes."
"I'll sit in the Jeep, but I can't let you drive yourself around today."
"Call Micah, or Nathaniel, they'll come pick me up."
He shook his head. "Nathaniel passed out at the club last night."
"Micah thinks that feeding the ardeurat least once a day for three months has taken its toil on Nathaniel."
"Is he alright?"
"He just needs a day off. Jean-Claude only takes blood from me every other day, usually."
"I switch off with Micah and Jean-Claude for the ardeur," I said.
"Yeah, but Jean-Claude only needs to feed once a day, you need to feed twice a day. Let's face it, Anita, you need a larger stable of pomme de sangs."
"What, you volunteering?"
An expression of delight crossed his face. "Oh, hell yes, I'd love to be on the receiving end of one of those spine cracking orgasms."
"Jason," I said, and the one word was warning enough.
"Fine, be that way, but who else are you going to put in Nathaniel's place while he recovers?"
I sighed. "Damn it."
"See, you don't know, do you?"
"I can feed on Asher now."
"Yes, but he's not going to wake up for hours and hours. You need some more day-walking donors, Anita. It doesn't have to be me, but it has to be somebody. Think about it. But today I am your escort, because you can't go out alone, not with the blood loss, and whatever the hell Asher did to you. You could call Micah, but by the time he drove out here, and the two of you drove out to wherever the police want to be, I think your police friends would be having fits."
"Fine, you've made your point."
"Have I? It's always so hard to tell with you. Sometimes I think I've won the argument, then you get a second wind and beat me all to hell with it."
"Just go, Jason, put some bandages on the scrapes."
"Scrapes hell, if I were human, you'd be taking me to the emergency room. Remember, Anita, you have some of the strength of both a vampire and a werewolf. We can punch our finger through someone's ribs."
"Are you really hurt?" I asked, all joking aside, I didn't want him hurt.
"Not permanently, but it'll heal almost human slow."
"I'm sorry, Jason." I remembered enough to say, "And thanks for taking care of me."
His grin faded, and something close to a serious look spilled through his eyes, then it was gone, hidden behind another smile. "All in a day's work, ma'am." He tipped an imaginary hat and started to shut the door. "I'd turn on the lamp before I close the door, it's damn dark without windows."
I reached over and switched on a small lamp beside the clock, on top of the little refrigerator. The glow seemed unnaturally bright.
"Your cell phone is on the floor on my side of the bed. I dropped it when you started convulsing."
"I was not convulsing," I said.
"Oh, sorry, I dropped it when you had your raging, overwhelming, screaming orgasm. Was that better? It sounded better didn't it?"
"Go clean up," I said, sounding grumpy when I said it.
He was laughing as he closed the door.
I was left alone with the little lamp, the big bed, and no clothes in sight. I was about to debate on whether to try and find some clothes before hunting up my phone, when it rang again. I scrambled across the bed, jerking the sheets off so they wouldn't tangle me. I half slid, half fell to the floor and found my phone by sitting on it.
It was Dolph, and he wasn't happy. While he'd been waiting for me, there had been a second call, to a second crime scene. He was pissed with Jason's antics on the phone, with both crime scenes, and especially, it seemed, with me.
The first crime scene was in Wildwood, that new bastion of money and social climbing. The hot addresses used to be Ladue, Clayton, Creve Coeur, but they've all become passe. Nope, the hot new place to be is Wildwood. The fact that it's in the middle of freaking nowhere doesn't seem to dissuade the nouveau riche, or wanna-be rich. Personally, the only reason I lived in the middle of nowhere, at a much less fashionable address, was the fact that I didn't want to get my neighbors shot up.
By the time Jason had driven through all the windy roads that led to the murder scene, we'd found out several things. First, my eyes were light sensitive, so my sunglasses were my friends. Second, my stomach didn't like the twisting roads. We hadn't had to stop so I could throw up, which was good, since unless we pulled into someone's drive, there was no shoulder to the road. It was bordered by woods, hills, tame wilderness, where real wolves no longer roam and even the black bears have found deeper holes to hide in.
Normally I love a drive through the country. Today all the bright greens meant was that when my vision swirled, it did it in Technicolor green like a frog smeared across my vision, which actually made the nausea worse.