Thorne Ch. 01bykalamazoo707©
We could see that Noel's mind was shattering and who knows? Maybe if he hadn't seen that fight with the Sinclaires; he might be completely healed by now."
"Why didn't someone tell me?" Thorne asked.
"You were busy doing whatever it was that you were doing and it was pure luck that you were even home that night." Samantha replied. "What would you have done if you had known? Taken him with you? Thorne, let's be honest, you're as selfish as I am. You knew that something was happening, but you chose to ignore it because it wasn't convenient."
Thorne looked down. He couldn't deny that there was some truth to what his mother said; but still...
"You should have told me just as you should have told me that you didn't want him." he said looking at her. "Do you realize what would have happened had he hurt someone? He could have been killed by a hunter! But it no longer matters; he leaves with me."
Thorne saw the look of relief on his mother's face and understood. He had played right into her hands. She wanted him to take Noel, but he had to make the offer. That way; he couldn't accuse her of pawning Noel off on him.
"Well played mother." Thorne said with a slight bow.
Samantha's lips twitched as she tried not to smile.
"We'll be leaving tomorrow evening." Thorne said as he walked away without looking back.
Thorne found Noel sitting behind a canvas painting as he talked with Felix who was also painting.
"Is mother alright?" Noel asked when he saw Thorne.
"She's fine." Thorne replied with a smile. "Felix, a word if I may."
He waited in a corner and waited for Felix to come to him. Felix listened without interruption.
"My pay would increase?" he asked at the end of the explanation.
"Yes and you will have to work the weekends. Your other days off are negotiable. I should mention that you will share a wing with Noel. There's plenty of room for both of you and you will have full use of the house. The only rooms that will be off limits are my bedroom and my office. What do you think?"
"Well... since I'm on call for you twenty-four seven anyway; why the hell not?" Felix asked with a grin. "So when do we move?"
Thorne pulled up a stool and sat next to Noel who was concentrating on painting a pair of eyes. Thorne looked at the light brown eyes and thought them hauntingly beautiful.
"Whose eyes are those?" Thorne asked.
"I don't know." Noel replied as he laid the brush down.
"Noel, what do you think about moving in with me?" Thorne asked.
Noel looked at him but didn't answer.
"Felix is coming too." Thorne replied.
"Really?" Noel asked. "What about mother?"
"Yes really." Thorne replied. "We can empty out whatever room you want to use as your studio."
"Does mother know?"
"Yes mother knows and she's alright with your leaving." Thorne assured him.
"Are you sure that mother will be safe?" Noel asked.
"I give you my word that mother will be safe." Thorne replied.
"Then... yes. When are we leaving?" Noel asked excitedly.
"This evening so maybe we should start packing up your things so that we're ready when the truck comes." Thorne said.
Noel jumped up and began cleaning his brushes while Thorne started making phone calls.
"What time do you want me back here?" Felix asked between phone calls.
"Eight is fine." Thorne replied. "We'll see you then."
Barb woke up several times to use the bathroom falling back into a restless sleep each time. This pattern continued until the afternoon when Kevyn called to tell her about the plans for the ceremony. She dozed off again only to be woken a second and then a third time by Kevyn. The fourth call was from Juliette.
"What do you mean that you can't send my stuff?" Barb asked sitting up.
"Wannie needs things for her science project and if I ship your things; there won't be enough money to get what she needs. But I have a suggestion, why don't you ask Kevyn if we can bring your stuff back on the jet? I'm sure that she won't mind and it'll save you a lot of money."
"Why isn't Angel buying Wannie's stuff?" Barb asked.
"He would if I asked him to, but I'm not going to ask." Juliette replied. "I have the money. As a matter of fact you have the money to ship your own things. You can do it online."
It was true that she could but she liked the illusion that someone was taking care of her.
"You'll have your money back by tomorrow..."
"Barb no! I've already talked to my boss and if you use us he'll give you my discount. Do you want it or not?"
Barb ended the conversation by sarcastically thanking Juliette for her help. Instead of taking Juliette's suggestion and calling Kevyn, she logged on to the website that Juliette gave her and arranged to have her things shipped. When she was done, she started rearranging the small efficiency to make room for her belongings. It wasn't long before she realized that she was going to need a storage unit. She cursed at the additional expense, but she had no real options other than looking for a bigger place.
When she had rearranged as much as she could, she logged back on to her laptop and researched storage companies. The smallest space was a three by six which was going to be too small. After thinking about it for several minutes, she decided that she needed a four by eight although it would be too large. She called the shipping company back to see if they would deliver to the storage unit.
"Yes ma'am but there's an additional cost."
"How much more?" she asked none too politely. "How much?" she asked shocked.
In the end she paid the additional fee. The shipping had cost her a pretty penny that she wouldn't have had to spend if she had only asked about having her things brought back on the jet. That brought up another issue; the jet. She was almost sure that Juliette wasn't supposed to say anything about the jet, but had because she was frustrated by the shipping issue.
She then wondered about the accommodations. She knew that they would all be staying at the same hotel she did; but what would the rooms be like? Would they be the expensive ones or one of the run of the mill ones like she had stayed in? Somehow, she knew that Kevyn and Patrick would put everyone in the nicest rooms.
The very idea of that pissed her off. Even as the anger rose, she knew that she should be happy for her sisters; but it wasn't fair. She had been looking for a man like the Sinclaires all of her life and in two weeks two of her sisters were marrying into the wealthy family.
Barb was still convinced that Kevyn knew how she and Louise had gotten into the Sinclaire family no matter how much she denied it. She tried to be happy for her sisters; but she just couldn't manage it. On the bright side, she knew that Joseph Richardson would be at the wedding. It was another opportunity to win him over.
"Wouldn't that be a kick in your ass?" Barb muttered to an imaginary Kevyn.
Around nine that evening, her stomach began to roil with nausea. She found it odd that it the nausea seemed to only come in the evenings. A word for what was happening to her flitted across her mind. She went into denial and told herself that she was coming down with the flu or something. She went to the kitchen, took 1000mg of Vitamin C and went back to the living room.
In a fit of frustration she turned on the laptop and logged onto the dating site that she had selected. After a few minutes, she logged off and lay down. Moments later, she fell asleep with angry thoughts on her mind.
Finally, after a week; Noel was settled in. He changed his mind several times before finally choosing which wing he wanted to live in and which room he wanted as a studio.
"Are you sure this time?" Felix and Thorne asked after moving things for the fourth time.
"I'm sure." Noel replied with a broad grin.
"Good." Thorne said returning the grin. "I have to work tonight but Felix will be here."
"Can I go to the club with you sometime?" Noel asked.
The question caught Thorne off guard. Noel generally didn't like being around large crowds; but he did seem more relaxed. It was all the confirmation that Thorne needed to know that he had done the right thing by bringing Noel home with him.
"Sure you can." Thorne replied. "We'll go sometime next week when it isn't so busy."
"Can Felix come too?" Noel asked.
"Of course he can and he can bring a guest if he wishes. But I need to go... I'll call you later."
As Thorne left the room, he saw the portrait that Noel had started the week before. He was surprised that he had done nothing more to it. Like before when he first saw them, he thought the eyes were gorgeous. If felt as though he could jump into them and drown in the soft brown of them.
"Noel, who is that? Her eyes are stunning." Thorne asked.
"I don't know." Noel replied and quickly covered the canvas.
Thorne didn't believe him but let it pass. Noel was an adult and would tell if when and if he chose to.
"Alright, I have to go but call me if you need anything."
After Thorne left, Noel uncovered the canvas, looked at it and then smiled. He looked at it for several minutes, his lips moving in silent conversation. Finally, he covered it again and went to work on a painting that was almost completed.
Thorne drove to the club with the radio turned off. In a few minutes he would have as much noise as he could tolerate. Michelle was sitting at his desk when he got to his office.
"Welcome back!" she said with a bright smile.
"Thanks." Thorne said absently as he looked at the stack of papers on his desk.
"Everything ran smoothly." Michelle said as she stood up hoping for some small token of appreciation even if it was only a smile.
"I can see that." Thorne said without looking at her. "Was there something else?"
"I... I was wondering..."
"No thanks." Thorne said dismissively. "I've got things to do."
Michelle looked at him with surprise on her face; but she didn't leave. Instead she began to undress. It was then that Thorne fully understood that what Michelle felt for him was more than a crush. She was in love with him.
"What are you doing?" he snapped. "I said no."
"What's wrong?" Michelle asked. "Let me take care of you."
Thorne looked at her with icy green eyes.
"I think that we need to revisit the terms of our.... Relationship." He said. "You've violated our agreement by falling for me."
Michelle froze. Had she been that obvious?
"I don't and never will see you as more than an employee and an enjoyable fuck. My advice to you is to get any silly notions of us being any more than we are out of your head." Thorne said. "Because it's not going to happen now or ever."
"I... I thought that..."
"You thought what?" Thorne interrupted. "That because I fuck you and trust you that I would fall for you? You are not my mate. If you can't keep to the terms of our agreement then there's the door."
Michelle blinked back tears of humiliation. She had heard that Thorne could be brutal but hadn't really seen it until now.
"You're a cold son of a bitch." She said in a shaky voice.
Thorne looked at her and smiled.
"I never professed to be anything else. You chose to see me through rose colored glasses and you chose to fall for me even though I warned you not to do so. I'm not responsible for any fantasies that you dreamed up. I'm busy are you staying or not?"
Michelle squared her shoulders and walked out. She was not going to fall apart in front of him. She wasn't going to quit; they both knew it. He was a bastard; but he was the best paying bastard in town. She went to her office, shut the door and cried. When she was done, she took out the schedule and changed it so that she wouldn't work on the same nights that she knew he would be there.
Thorne watched Michelle leave and then looked down at his crotch. He hadn't even tingled at the thought of fucking.
"What in the hell is going on?" He growled.
Barb's face popped into his mind and he pushed it away. It had been two weeks since he and Allen had used her like a common whore and that he realized that she was his mate. He cursed again and looked through the papers on his desk. He signed the payroll checks and went down to the club.
Several women caught his eye as he walked through the club to the bar, but none of them made his cock twitch. He was slowly coming to realize that his lack of interest was due to one thing- Barbara Yancy Simpson.
He knew of the pending marriage ceremony between the Sinclaires and the Yancy sisters and had given serious thought to crashing the wedding. Meeting Barb changed his mind and he found the human marriage ceremony beautiful and considered it sacred. Not even he would dare to violate it; but the reception would have been another thing altogether.
He turned his attention to the bar in time to see two vampires preparing to feed from a human woman. Although almost anything went, he stopped them before they started. The woman was too drunk to have given proper consent. He looked around, caught Michelle's attention and waved her over to the bar.
"Get her out of here." He said when Michelle got to the bar.
After the woman was gone, Thorne turned to the two vampires.
"What in the hell were you doing?" he snapped.
"She consented." One of them replied.
"Before or after you got her drunk?" Thorne asked. "Consider yourselves warned. The next time you'll be banned from my club and I'll pass your names along to the other clubs in the area. Your stupidity could have drawn attention to not only my club but others as well."
He turned and walked away before either vampire could respond.
"Where in the hell is Billings?" he muttered. The vampire had to go he decided. He needed someone with a little more backbone.
The two weeks before the wedding flew by. Barb looked through her things for something to wear and finally decided that she had to buy something new. She had half a mind to show up at the wedding in blue jeans and a tee shirt, but decided that she would be the one who would look bad. Neither Kevyn nor Louise would have minded how she was dressed and that ruined the fun for her.
She had already made several trips to the storage unit to get something that she needed or to take something back that she didn't have room for. By the time she had everything the way she wanted, the arrival date of her family was already there.
Barb dressed and packed for the week and headed for the hotel. She wanted to be the first to be checked in as she was more than a little curious about the accommodations. She parked in front of the hotel and handed the keys to none other than Ollie. To his relief, she didn't even spare him a glance as she dropped the keys in his hand and walked into the hotel.
She had a feeling of déjà vu when she walked into the hotel lobby and saw Hans at the desk. She hadn't intended to be rude, but she couldn't seem to help herself.
"So what little hole in the wall am I in this time?" she asked when she was standing at the counter.
"Your suite is on the top floor with the others." Hans replied icily. "You are also authorized to take full advantage of all of our amenities." He added.
"Really?" Barb said sarcastically. "How generous of them to share the wealth with the poor relatives."
"Are you ready to have your things taken to your suite?" Hans asked ignoring the obvious jibe. "There is also food available in the banquet room."
She was about to say something when she realized that she no longer had Hans' attention.
"Hey! I'm talking to you!" she exclaimed.
But Hans didn't seem to hear her. Barb turned to see who or what had captured his attention. At first she didn't see anything and then she heard her name being called. She saw Victor running toward her and then he stopped. A few seconds later, she saw Juliette and Wanda followed by the others. Barb looked around them trying to figure out what had taken Hans' attention.
She looked back at Hans and then back toward her family. There was only one person in the group that he could have been looking at-Juliette. Barb watched in amazement as Hans suddenly became nervous. His calm demeanor was gone as his hands shook. The business persona had been replaced by the persona of an excited but nervous man.
Barb greeted her family, but her mind was on Hans' reaction to Juliette. She didn't understand it. He had to know that the kids belonged to Juliette; but that didn't stop him from drooling over her. To add to her ire, Juliette was reciprocating the interest and Celeste who was always reticent around strangers was smiling at him.
She looked over at Gene; the only one of her siblings who she thought understood her and smiled. At least she would have someone to commiserate with she thought as she hugged Leon. She glanced at Kevyn and Louise but didn't speak to them. She was wrong and she knew it but...
The gathering in the banquet room was almost more than she could stand. She sat with Gene and watched how Nathan and Patrick attended to Louise and Kevyn. Even she could see that the affection that the two couples had for each other was real. But that didn't answer her question. How had Louise and Kevyn done it?
"How do you think they did it?" Gene asked as if he had read Barb's mind.
"That's the million dollar question." She replied.
It was hard to believe that Louise and Kevyn's wedding had occurred a month ago and that she and Louise were both pregnant. But not only that, Hans and Juliette weren't a fling and neither was Leon and Nadine, the housekeeper from the hotel. Unbelievably, all of them with the exception of Gene were moving back to California. She was still miffed at what she considered to be Gene's abandonment of her and felt that she was now truly alone.
Barb had spoken to Louise once in that month and that was only because Louise had come to the apartment. She blushed when she remembered the way that she had spoken to Louise, but she didn't feel the need to apologize.
Barb rubbed her stomach as she looked at herself in the mirror. Unlike Louise she wasn't looking forward to gaining weight and motherhood. She was looking forward to the pain that would come with childbirth even less. She had never wanted a child and had never considered using one to get what she wanted.
"Well." She muttered as she looked at her reflection. "At least you'll do something for me."
She still hadn't decided when she was going to tell Thorne about the baby. Part of it was because she knew what he would say.
"I wasn't the only one that you fucked."
She could almost hear him say it.
"I have to be ready for anything that he throws at me." She muttered as she took a multivitamin from the medicine cabinet. After she took the vitamin, she laid down on the couch. She hadn't been sleeping well at night and when she did, she was plagued by dreams of Louise drinking blood. She woke up from the dreams shaken and confused as to why she would have dreams like that.
She had even lost interest in the dating site that she had finally decided on after hours of research. She didn't understand it. Her desire for what her sister's had hadn't diminished, but she had lost interest in pursuing it.
"It's because it's now within my reach." She told herself. "Mrs. Thorne Blackwell... I like it."
In her mind, she planned the perfect wedding. It was one that would surpass the small, intimate beach wedding that Kevyn and Louise had. She planned the menu for the reception clear down to the Caribbean cruise that they would take on their honeymoon. The fact that she didn't love him didn't enter into it. That she would have everything that she ever dreamed of was all that mattered. As far as the baby was concerned, she would start looking into nanny services as soon as possible. It was going to be a good life.