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|Bad Blood(Blood Coven Vampire,book 4) by Mari Mancusi|
“You have school,” Magnus reminds me. What is he, my dad? “And anyway, it’ll be really boring for you. I’ll be stuck in meetings all night and will barely have any time to see you. This isn’t a vacation, you know.”
Of course. He doesn’t want me to go. Mainly because he’s already going with Jane. Big fake-ass Jane who I know for a fact did not get some fancy degree from Oxford like she says she did. In fact, I bet she’s never even set foot on the university grounds.
“Fine,” I say, rising to my feet, done with this scene. “Have a nice trip. I’ll see you when you get back. Maybe.”
And with that, I turn tail. I can hear Magnus calling after me as I storm from the café and back into the dance hall, but I don’t turn around. I need to find Rayne. She’ll know what to do.
“Okay, okay, here I am,” Rayne says as she slides into the passenger seat of our car. “What’s the big emergency?”
She hadn’t wanted to leave the club, claiming she’d requested an Apoptygma Berzerk song and the DJ was sure to play it any moment now. I had to go so far as to remind her that the two of us had once shared a womb, which left her morally obligated to sacrifice certain dance numbers to come to my aid if/when I suffered a time of need. (And I definitely felt, under the circumstances, I qualified right now as particularly needy.) Even with that logic, she refused to adhere to this twin code of honor unless I agreed to grant her a “just three more songs” exception. Some loyal twin sister she is.
I, on the other hand, had gone straight to the car (Apoptygma Berzerk sounds like a disease I don’t want to catch) and sat in the driver’s seat with the radio turned up (to a much more sensible Katy Perry tune), trying not to cry as I waited for her to finish getting her dance on. I couldn’t believe that only yesterday all I’d been concerned with was whether or not to go all the way. Now I was worried about losing my boyfriend altogether. To a girl who may or may not have devious designs to kill him, nonetheless.
“It’s Jane,” I explain as Rayne slams the car door shut behind her and promptly proceeds to turn off the radio. Not a big Katy Perry fan, my sister. Some random moral stance about pseudo lesbianism practiced solely to get the attention of horny boys. Which is, like, totally whatever. I mean, I just think her tunes are catchy.
“I thought we talked about this, Sun,” Rayne says, sounding a bit out of breath and more than a bit exasperated. “Magnus loves you. It’s so obvious.”
“Then why doesn’t he want me to come to Vegas with him?”
Rayne’s eyes light up. “Vegas?” she questions. “What about Vegas?”
“You know, that big vampire consortium thing they’re having this week. Where all the coven leaders meet to discuss world events or whatever.”
“They’re having it in Vegas?” Rayne cries.
“Yeah.” I look over at her. “Didn’t Jareth tell you?”
“He mentioned the consortium thingy a while back, but he’s not going. Has some overseas business to take care of for the coven.” Jareth had been reinstated to his post as Magnus’s general once he got his vampire powers back and he’s been working like mad ever since, trying to make up for lost time, I guess.
“He never said it was in Las Vegas though!” Rayne’s eyes shine. “I love Vegas. All those neon lights and tacky tourists. All those hopes and dreams and bigstakes poker games. Not to mention there are Elvis’s everywhere. In fact, I think you can even get married by Elvis in Vegas. Could you imagine getting married by Elvis? That would seriously be the best wedding ever. Not that I necessarily want to get married. But if I did, it’d definitely rock to have Elvis as my minister.”
Really, sometimes I think the girl has a serious case of undiagnosed ADD.
“You’re missing the point here,” I say, interrupting her Vegas visions of grandeur.
“Which is . . . ?”
“He’s taking Jane with him. To Vegas. And they’re going to have some big ceremony where he’s going to make her his blood mate in front of all the coven leaders in the world. It’s like this close to being a wedding.”
“Ooh! Maybe they could have a vampire Elvis preside over the ceremony. There’s got to be a vampire Elvis or two, right? In fact, maybe the real-life Elvis is now a vampire. That could be why people still see him every now and then in the frozen foods section of their local grocery stores.”
“I swear to God, Rayne . . .”
She laughs. “Okay, okay. Jeez, I was just trying to cheer you up.” She pats my arm in her patented patronizing manner that I hate. “So he’s going to get hitched in Vegas. What does it matter? I mean, he’s going to do it somewhere and, hey, at least if he’s there you don’t have to watch, right?”
“If you’d just listen to me for one tiny minute . . .”
“Sorry. I’m all ears.”
“Jane’s a fake. A big, fat fake. I asked her a question about Oxford—the school she claims to have gotten her degree at—and she knows nothing about it. Not to mention she seems to think Latinas speak Latin . . .”
Rayne raises an eyebrow. “Oh-kay then.”
“And if she’s lying about going to Oxford,” I continue, “I can only wonder what else she could be lying about. What if Jane’s not who they think she is?
She could do serious harm to the Blood Coven if installed as Magnus’s righthand girl.”