The Tiny Vampire From Outer Space That’s Bitey XII: Purple Sky
Marcus' plans are moving right along. His blooddoll stock is growing, and his family is growing. Now, he just needs to stop the space agency from killing every living thing on the planet with space dust, and in order to do that he has to change Earth's atmosphere. While it's not an impossible task, he needs to create the gases, get into space and release them. Only then will his food supply be safe.
Marcus looked down at Shadow while he buttoned his shirt. He’d gotten out of bed and dressed while leaving her in bed. Now, he was debating on whether or not he wanted to wake her before or after he made food.
Shadow inhaled and flopped over. She landed on the mattress.
“I’m right here,” Marcus said.
Shadow opened her eyes. “Why?”
“I was getting dressed and debating if I should wake you. Are you getting up or waiting until I have breakfast ready?”
Shadow tried to sit up. “I’m stuck.”
Marcus leaned over and started unwrapping her from the blankets. He removed two and stared at the rest of them. “How did you do this?” She was completely twisted in the bedding.
“I don't know,” Shadow said.
“I can’t find the edge.” Marcus picked her up with tendrils. “You were laying on it.” He finished unwrapping her and laid her back on the bed. “The first vampire caterpillar.”
Shadow laughed as she slid out of the bed.
Marcus walked into her closet. “You’re clean. Do you want a dress?”
“Is it cold out?”
“I don’t think so, but I can get you some leggings and a sweater too,” Marcus said.
“Okay,” Shadow said.
Marcus grabbed a dress off of a hanger and stepped out of the closet. He slid the dress over Shadow’s head then zipped it before searching for a pair of thick stockings and some straps. “Come here.” Marcus slid them on her legs then put the straps over the tops. “You’re dressed. You just need to pick a sweater if you want one.”
Shadow grabbed her sandals from under the bed and strapped them to her feet. “Are we going back to Area 51?” She walked into her closet and grabbed a long sweater. Shadow put it on and walked into the bedroom.
“We are,” Marcus said. “Did you want to ride the Marcus on the way to the kitchen?”
“Yes.” Shadow hopped.
Marcus grabbed her mid-air and carried her down to the kitchen while she squealed.
Oliver stepped through the front door and walked down the hall to see Marcus swinging Shadow around in the kitchen. He laughed. “What are you doing?”
“Getting Umbra Ones,” Marcus said. He sat Shadow on her feet. “And entertaining my Bonded.” He walked over to the replicator and programmed three Umbra Ones.
“Giving her some of that Sire attention she didn’t get,” Oliver said.
Marcus chuckled. “It can’t all be work and sacs.” He passed out the Umbra Ones. “I guess Alera doesn’t like being entertained.”
“Not like that,” Oliver said. “I’d say it’s the age difference, but I don’t think so. She’s never wanted to be picked or tickled or anything like that. She does like playing Go Fish.” He drained his Umbra One and threw away the container.
Shadow drained her Umbra One. “I think she’s missing out.”
Oliver grinned. “She might be. But I think we need to get serious, and I need to get the van.”
“Did you want something?” Marcus asked as he threw away his empty Umbra One container.
“I was just making sure you two were up. You’ve been sleeping late,” Oliver said.
“We’re up. We’ll meet you out front,” Marcus said. He watched Oliver walk out the front door before turning his attention to Shadow. “Do you want an elixir?”
“I think I’m okay,” Shadow said.
“Half an elixir it is.” Marcus programmed the replicator.
Shadow shook her head. “You worry too much.”
“Probably.” Marcus handed her the container. “I think you’re about over it, but I want you to drink that anyway.”
Shadow drained it. “Why are you excessively worried tonight? There’s no moon.”
“If I could determine that...” Marcus said.
“You have too many thoughts,” Shadow said.
“That’s most of the problem,” Marcus said. “I’m contemplating many things. I can quiet that for you.”
Shadow shook her head. “It’s okay.”
“It’s not okay. I’m going to end up confusing you.” Marcus lessened the input going through their bond. “That’s only temporary.”
“If I can’t make sense of my thoughts, you’re not going to either,” Marcus said.
“Do you want more childer?”
“Yes.” Marcus took a step back and shook his head as if trying to erase that answer. “I want what’s best for you.” He found it interesting that out of everything he was contemplating, she picked that topic.
“I think your first answer was the real one,” Shadow said.
“I think this is a topic best left alone for the time being,” Marcus said.
“Why?” Shadow asked.
“Because you’re still overly sensitive, and to make any decisions of that nature, we need to be objective,” Marcus said.
“Objective about family?”
“What I said about them being cannon fodder and servants was the truth,” Marcus said. “Not counting the first eight or ten.”
“I don’t know how to fix that,” Shadow said.
“I don’t either,” Marcus said. “But I bet Oliver has the van out front.” He wrapped an arm around her and ushered her through the front door of the house. Her topic of conversation wasn’t one he wanted to continue. He didn’t have any additional thoughts other than what he’d already told her and just now repeated.
Oliver was just stepping out of the van as they stepped off the porch.
“Intense conversation?” he asked.
“Little bit,” Marcus said. “We were discussing the expansion plans for our family.”
“More childer,” Oliver said.
“We’re at a crossroads, I think,” Marcus said.
“No one said you couldn’t have more,” Oliver said. “We’re just asking that you slow down.”
Marcus nodded. “It’s a tougher decision than it sounds.”
“Well, I think you’ve got some things in your collective past that you need to clear up before you can make any further decisions on that,” Oliver said.
“Like what?” Marcus asked.
“I think you need to confront the vampire that turned Shadow,” Oliver said. “That seems to be both of your primary problems. I know you’ve resired and bonded her, but it doesn’t seem to be enough for either of you.”
“I don’t know about that,” Marcus said.
“Well, think about how much you improved after getting your closure with Gala.”
“I told Gala to leave me the hell alone. Although, she did apologize. More or less,” Marcus said. “But we don’t exactly know where Shadow’s former sire is so that we can have any type of discussion, much less get a half-assed apology.”
“We know he’s here,” Oliver said. “I’d suggest sitting at the shelter and seeing if he shows up. It’s the only place in town with good food.”
“We’re due at Area 51 tonight,” Marcus said.
“Let Alera and I go. Take the car and wait for that idiot,” Oliver said. “If I have a question or need your input, I can call.”
“We don’t know that he’ll show tonight,” Marcus said.
“But you don’t know that he won’t,” Oliver said.
“I guess we could stop by there. I’ll have my wrist device,” Marcus said.
“We’ll call if we need you,” Oliver said.
“Are we ready?” Alera asked as she walked toward the van.
“We are. Marcus and Shadow have business at the shelter,” Oliver said.
“Are they coming later?” Alera asked.
“Maybe,” Marcus said. “Depends on how long this takes.”
“All right. We’ll see you later.” Alera stepped into the van and closed the door.
“I’ll get the car,” Marcus said to Shadow.
“Are you sure you want to do this?” Shadow asked.
“Might as well get it over with,” Marcus said as he walked toward the car. “It’ll happen at some point regardless, and I’d rather have the element of surprise.”
Shadow followed him and stepped in on the passenger’s side.
“I was going to bring the car to you,” Marcus said as he started the engine.
“I know, but I can get myself in,” Shadow said.
“I don’t have any doubts about that. You can do a lot, and you’re not competing with the childer over opening your own car door.” Marcus drove down the driveway.
“I know. I just...”
“It’s not an inconvenience,” Marcus said. “None of it is. I like washing you and dressing you. I like opening the car door for you.”
“But wouldn’t you like it if I could do more of that myself?” Shadow asked.
“I feel like we’ve had this conversation,” Marcus said. “I like it. It lets me take care of you on a more intimate level than other bondeds get to experience.” He contemplated, searching for better words. “I consider it a privilege.”
“Oh,” Shadow said.
“But speaking of childer, did they say if they fed them?”
“I think Alera did it. That’s why she was running late,” Shadow said.
Marcus nodded as he drove.
Shadow settled into the passenger’s seat. “I don’t want to do this.”
Marcus glanced at her as he drove. “I know you’re uncomfortable with it, but it needs to be done. You need to know why he left you. To spite having a new stable life and family, you’re still affected, and so am I. Oliver was correct on both of those points.”
“He’s older than you,” Shadow said.
“He’s also my great great grandsire,” Marcus said. “If I’m right about your lineage anyway.”
“I haven’t thought of that name in over a hundred years,” Shadow said.
“I know,” Marcus said.
“What do you know?” Shadow asked.
“Not much,” Marcus said.
“More than I do,” Shadow said.
“I only know more than you do because I’m older. I put a few things together,” Marcus said. He turned into the underground garage of the apartment complex and parked. “Did you want to see the childer?”
“Not yet,” Shadow said.
Marcus turned off the engine. “We’ll just head over then.” He walked around the car and opened Shadow’s door.
“You never do that,” Shadow said.
“Open your door so you can get out? I guess not. Oliver usually drives, so I’m opening my door then getting you.” He picked Shadow up and carried her across the street to the shelter. Marcus set her on her feet as soon as they entered the door.
“Marcus, I didn’t expect you tonight,” Sadie said.
“I didn’t expect to be here tonight,” Marcus said. “But I’m looking for a tall man. About my height. Long black hair. He sometimes frequents here.”
“Kinda large. Always wears a cape with a hood?” Sadie asked.
“That would be him,” Marcus said.
“If he’s here, he would be downstairs in the other line,” Sadie said.
“Thank you.” Marcus led Shadow to the back of the building and down the stairs to the basement. There was a line of vampires nearly out the door.
“Wow,” Shadow said.
“We are busy tonight.” Marcus walked down the line to the front. “William.”
“They have me down here tonight,” William said.
“That’s fine,” Marcus said. “Have you seen a large vampire with long black hair wearing a cape? Well, I guess it’s a cloak. It has a hood.”
“He’s about twentieth in this line,” William said as he took the next vampire’s money and handed her four bloodbags. “Saw him when I went to use the bathroom. He’s hard to miss.”
“I see him.” Marcus stepped back so that William could serve everyone. He decided not to pull Jaq out of the line. It was bad enough that he was going to interrupt his meal. There were times for confrontation and times not for confrontation, and food time was definitely not a confrontation time. Not an ideal one, anyway.
It took slightly more than twenty minutes for Jacques to get to the front.
“How many?” William asked.
“Is there a limit?” Jaq asked.
“Ten,” Jaq said then thought better of it. “Better make it sixteen.”
William loaded a bag and zipped it. That’s a hundred and sixty Empyrean dollars.
Jacques handed the man the cash and took his bag. He took a few steps out of the line and looked up. “It can’t be.”
“It can be,” Marcus said.
Shadow and...” Jacques paused and frowned. “Marcus?”
“You are correct,” Marcus said.
Jacques walked over to them. “Well, this isn’t a reunion I ever expected.”
“I suppose not since you left the entire planet,” Marcus said.
“I suppose you’re angry,” Jaq said.
“Extremely,” Marcus said. “What in Hades possessed you to leave a two-year-old vampire alone without calling anyone to pick her up!?”
“I left for Chivitas that night. I was unable to get her,” Jacques said.
“And unable to call my Sire to get her,” Marcus said. “Or myself.”
“I should have made more of an effort, but she was very advanced for her age,” Jaq said.
“She was devastated, under-trained and ill-equipped to be left by herself!” Marcus said.
Jaq looked around. The line of vampires was now staring at them. “Can we talk someplace more private?”
Marcus snarled and motioned toward the stairs.