Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Wednesday Briefs - Boys of Belsmeade 21

Welcome to Wednesday Briefs! It's flash fiction, so this story will be presented in 1000(ish)-word chapters. I hope you enjoy it, and check out the many other flashers, whose links are below. You can also check out the Wednesday Briefs Blog for more info and to sign up for email notifications.

Thanks for reading!


Chapter Twenty-One

Aurelia clutched at her husband's arm. "Do something, Aristes! This is your son!"

Count Corleanni put a hand up to calm her. "Come, brothers, let us discuss this matter. May we use your study, Ambrogi?"

"Certainly," Aristes replied with an ingratiating smile. "If you will follow me."

Betina glanced at my father and left with the members of the council. The countess shot another look at Aurelia, and then followed the others. As soon at the butler shut the door, Epp took Blake by the hand and pulled him toward the door.

"Don't go far," Aurelia told him. Epp shrugged, but didn't say anything. His mother touched his shoulder and said, "Epifanio, you know your father and I will move heaven and earth to keep you and your mate safe, but you cannot defy the council. Please. It would destroy me if something happened to you."

She shook with dry sobs and sank miserably into a chair. Epp went to her and said, "I promise you, mami, I'll be careful. I'll do anything they say, but I won't leave my mate, no matter what."

"I'm so proud of you," she said.

My father was still in a daze after meeting Benita. He cleared his throat and we all turned to him. "So, who is Benita? Is she… uh… part of the council?"

Lucia smiled knowingly. "Gorgeous isn't she? Yeah, she's the only female on the council, well, if you don't include Countess von Bitchen-stein."

"Shh!" Aurelia hissed. "Stop that."

I had to ask. "Did I notice some tension there?"

Aramis squeezed my hand to get my attention, then whispered, "I'll tell you later."

"Back to Benita," Dad said, "and the whole vampire thing."

His innocence made me smile. "What's up, Dad?"

He shrugged. "You tell me. I laid eyes on the woman, shook her hand and it felt like fifty thousand volts shot through my arm. And did anyone else notice a really strong floral scent? Like a really nice flowery perfume?"

Raniero let his head fall back against the chair and stared at the ceiling. In an exhausted drawl, he asked, "Who wants to tell him?"

Aurelia looked at Dad and said, "Well, John. Your reaction to Benita, and her reaction to you, probably means that you are fated to be together as mates."

Dad sat heavily in a chair and blinked at her. "Pardon?"

Marco explained, "Mates. As in, you'd be changed into a vampire and you'd have sex with her and you'd drink each other's blood while you—"

Aristes opened the door and caught the tail-end of the Marco's explanation. He shut the door quickly and barked at his son. "Marco!"

My father mumbled, "Mates. Blood. Sex. Right." And then he promptly fainted. He fell forward and his forehead hit the table with a thud. We all winced.

I picked my father up and slung him over my shoulder. "Where can I put him?"

"On the living room sofa," Aramis said. "You want me to carry him?"

"Oddly enough, I barely feel his weight."

"Let's all go out and wait in the living room," Aristes said.

I laid my father down on the couch and Aramis got a cool facecloth. When I touched it to Dad's skin, he started to groan. "Oh. Wow, my head. What… what happened?"

"You passed out," I explained. "About the whole mate thing."

Aurelia came in with a cup of coffee. "Here you are, John. Just try to relax."

Dad sat up slowly. "So, what do I do now?"

Aristes smiled. "You don't have to do anything, strictly speaking. When you're ready, you could leave here and never see Benita again."

"What would happen to Benita?" I asked. "I mean, wouldn't she be miserable?"

"For a while," Aurelia said, "but eventually she'd get better. A long time ago, she was in love with a human, but before they could be mated, he died in the war."

"That's so sad," I said. "Was he in Iraq or Kuwait or something?"

Aristes glanced at Dad and said, "Actually, he died in the Italian Wars in 1495."

"What?" Dad cried.

Blanca nodded. "Yeah, Benita's old. Like, really, really old."

Raniero snickered. "The ultimate cougar."

Epp growled. "Can you all please just shut up and be serious? I'm a little stressed!"

"I'm sorry," Aristes said. "Of course you're nervous, but I have a feeling you'll like the outcome."

"Excuse me?" I said.

"Yes, dear," Aurelia answered.

I bit my lip. "I can hear cars out on the road and squirrels outside in the trees, but I can't hear what the council are talking about. Why is that?"

"Dad's study is soundproofed," Aramis said. "Makes it easier for him to conduct private business without anyone listening in."

Thus informed, I sat back and waited for what seemed like hours. Finally the study door opened and the council filed into the living room. The count's face was so expressionless that I couldn't possibly tell what he was about to say.

We all stood. The count motioned Blake over to stand in front of his jury. Epp went with him, clutching his hand tightly.

"Yes, sir?" Blake said.

"Young man," the count said, "There are very serious charges leveled against you. However, due to several mitigating factors, we have decided you will not be put to death."

Blake and Epp both exhaled shakily. Aurelia clutched at her husband, burying her face against his neck. Aristes hugged his wife tightly and smiled at Epp. The count cleared his throat and continued, "That being said, you still broke one of our most sacred laws, as well as the theft of Aramis' phone, and giving access to a feeder club to a non-vetted human. In addition to that, your intended mate also showed the council great disrespect here today. Because of this, the two of you will be on probation for the next three months. You had better not put one finger out of line or there will be dire consequences."

"We won't, sir," Epp said. He took Blake's face in his hands and kissed him.


Don't forget to visit the other flashers!

Avery Dawes
Caraway Carter
Carol Pedroso
Cia Nordwell
Jim Dunaway
Julie Lynn Hayes
MA Church
Ravon Silvius
Sarah Hayes
Shelly Schulz
Tali Spencer

No comments:

Post a Comment