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|Girls That Growl(Blood Coven Vampire,book 3) by Mari Mancusi|
"I know," I say, relenting. "You're right. I'm sorry."
But deep inside, I hope he's wrong. Because if what's inside is what really counts, I'm not sure I have much of a chance of impressing anyone.
We hop in a waiting limo and speed down the wrong side of the street to our destination. The bright lights ofthebig city of Manchester fall away and the dark-ness of the English moors provides an eerie backdrop to our nocturnal adventure. I peer out the window at the dark landscape unfolding in front of me as we race through the night.
"I wish we weren't just here on some mission," I com-ment to Jareth. "I'd love to check out the country someday."
"Well, we have all eternity," Jareth says, reaching over to take my hand in his. "We can definitely come back."
I smile, leaving the window and crawling over to his side of the limo. I put my head on his shoulder and snuggle close. He strokes my hand with his thumb in a way that gives me shivers.
"I'm sorry about before, Jareth," I murmur, feeling extremely comfy-cozy in his arms. "I don't know what came over me. I've just been getting so angry lately. It's kind of scary, really. When I get into these rages it's like I can't con-trol my actions or what comes out of my mouth."
He kisses me on the top of my head. "You've gone through a tremendous amount of change in a short period of time. The stresses on you now are off the charts. It's enough to make anyone feel unsettled."
"It's just. . . and this sounds ridiculous when I say it out loud ... I just thought once I became a vampire all my prob-lems would ... I don't know, go away." I shrug against him. "Stupid, huh?"
"Oh little one, you have much to learn," Jareth says. "But I promise to be there for you every step of the way."
"Really? You won't leave me?" I ask. "No matter what?"
"We're blood mates. I'm yours for eternity," he assures, shifting in his seat so we're face-to-face. He cups my chin in his hand, meeting my eyes with his own brilliant green ones."Ilove you, Rayne McDonald."
I drop my eyes, unable to look at him. I feel so unworthy. His love is so strong and yet I'm so weak and pathetic. He gave up everything for me and I treat him like dirt. "I don't deserve you to love me," I whisper.
"What was that?" he asks, not catching my words.
"Um, nothing. Forget it." I look back up at him and force a smile. "I love you, too, Jareth. Always and forever."
He smiles and leans in to press his lips against mine. Slowly he caresses my mouth, coaxing me to open to him so he can ex-plore me more thoroughly. Electricity tingles through my fin-gers and toes as we kiss, losing ourselves in one another, allowing all the stresses and problems to fade away. For this moment there are no werewolves or life-altering events that I must stop before it's too late. At this moment it is just me and my blood mate, giving, taking, comforting, loving.
We kiss for what seems like hours, exploring one another and discovering new depths of emotion and pleasure. And when the limo pulls to the side of the road and slows to a stop, it's way too early for me to want to part company.
We reluctantly stop kissing, pulling away slowly, as if in-dustrial-strength magnets objected to us being apart. Jareth looks dazed and pleased. I'm sure I'm the same.
"Are you ready, my dear," he asks, "to meet the vam-pires?"
"Oh yes!" I say, excitement reverberating through me. "So ready!"
I jump out of the limo. We're parked in a circular drive-way in front of the hugest mansion I've ever laid eyes on. It looks exactly like what you might imagine Madonna and Guy Ritchie living in. A vast English estate with miles and miles (or as they say, kilometers and kilometers) of grassy lawn. I bet there're even stables here, filled with horses. Of course, they can only go night riding . . .
Jareth takes my hand in his and we walk up to the front doors, which sit between two pillars. He lifts up the large brass knocker (in the shape of a dragon) and lets it drop. It echoes a bang loud enough to wake the dead, which I guess is essentially what we're doing.
I squirm with excitement, hopping from one foot to the other, dying to see what the English vampires are like. I mean, these are my people. My blood relatives. These are the ones who will truly understand the real me. Who won't judge me because of what I look like or who I am. We'll have long talks and share laughs about pathetic mortals and their silly ways and maybe they'll even let me borrow some of their
clothes. I bet they have marvelous—
Oh my God.
The door has swung open and on the other side stands Reese Witherspoon. Okay, not really Reese Witherspoon, but someone who looks a heck of a lot like Miss Legally Blonde. She looks about eighteen and is dressed like she's ready for her first day of prep school. White polo shirt, khaki pants with pleats in the front, even a pastel pink sweater tied around her neck.
This has to be the mortal the vampires are drinking from at dinner, right? There's no way this could be an actual—
"Jareth!" the girl cries, throwing her arms around my boyfriend. I notice she has a perfectly painted French mani-cure and a diamond tennis bracelet around her left wrist. "It's bloody good to see you, luv."
"Katie!" Jareth greets Miss Prep, hugging her back. "It's bloody good to be seen. How long has it been?" he asks, his English accent coming out in full force around another Brit.