It's been awhile, but here you go! Happy Boxing Day!

Chapter Sixteen: Love Bites

At breakfast, no one says anything about what happened the day before. Sei isn't at the table, but Neve is sitting between Faolan and Sage, Felix next to me. My stomach ache has thankfully subsided, but I still don't eat much. I keep looking around the table, waiting for someone to bring up yesterday.

Nothing.

"Neve, do you work tonight?" Sage asks, ripping pieces off of a biscuit and popping them into his mouth.

Neve has not once looked my way since our…talk. "No, tomorrow night."

"So everyone will be home, then?"

Swallowing a mouthful of coffee, Felix shakes his head. "Nah, I'll be out on a job. Cheating wife to follow." He yawns, scrubbing a hand through his hair. "Hopefully won't take too long, but…" He shrugs.

I take another half-hearted bite of my scrambled eggs, before giving up and setting down my fork. Faolan glances at me, but no one says anything.

"Alright, I'll make you something to take with you," Sage says, finishing his biscuit. He wipes his fingers on his napkin, reaching for his tea. "Probably won't be missing much. Faolan and I have marking to do, and Sei has a deadline coming up, so I doubt he'll be upstairs much this weekend."

Hearing Sei's name makes me wince, and I reach for my water to try and hide it. I know everyone knows what happened; there are really no secrets in this family. I just wish someone would…talk about it or yell at me or something. There's no one they're not mad. Even Sage has barely talked to me, after spending the night in someone else's room.

I just want to curl up and die.

Light conversation continues around me, but I don't look up from my barely touched plate, fingers twisted together in my lap. I want to just run, but that would bring attention to myself and that would be even worse. So, I wait it out, practically jumping from my chair when everyone else moves. I carry my plate to the sink, dumping my cold food out, and then hurry from the room. I don't stop until I'm safely holed away in the study, door shut. Pressing my hands to my face, I take long, deep breaths until I feel calm enough to walk across the room. Homework seems to be my only refuge at the moment, and I just pray that no one will come in.

For once, it seems like someone is listening to me.

I manage to concentrate on my work for a few, solid hours, focussing completely on the words on the screen and in my books, fingers slowly typing. Faolan assured me that with enough practise, I'll be typing as fast as him. Right now, that seems impossible, and my current speed is bloody frustrating.

A knock on the door makes my fingers mash the keys as I jump. Swearing, I fix the sentence and save, before standing up and making my way across the room. I stop when the door opens and Sage steps inside, quietly shutting it behind him. Frozen, I just stare at him, mouth going dry when he finally meets my eye.

"Kit, we need to talk."

My stomach clenches and I feel like I'm gonna throw up. Swallowing hard, I nod, but don't move. Sage, however, moves to the chesterfield and sits down, patting the seat next to him. I reluctantly start forward and sit next to him, perched on the edge and ready to run.

Taking a deep breath and letting it out, Sage says, "I'm sure you know what this is about." Lips pressed tight, I nod. Sage glances at me, before his eyes drop to his folded hands. "I know you're trying, Kit, I do. But what happened yesterday… You really could have hurt him, maybe even sent to the hospital." I swallow again, the guilt choking me. I avoid Sage's eyes when he looks up at me again, brow furrowed. "Why did you do that?"

"I…" My voice croaks and I clear my throat, nails digging into my thighs. "I got scared."

"By what? I know he wouldn't attack you."

I shake my head, unable to form the words. Logically, I know Sei won't do anything. But…but I just can't… "I can't. I'm trying, but he's…he's a vampire and…" I squeeze my eyes shut, shaking my head.

"And Faolan's a werewolf, Neve's a fae, and I'm human. What's there to be afraid of?"

"It's not the same!" I hunch my shoulders, breath shuddering. "It's not the same at all."

Sage is quiet for awhile and I just sit there, swallowing air and trying to calm down. It was never this bad before. Not for years.

"You're hurting Sei." Sage's voice is still quiet, but tighter. "I know you don't mean to, but you are. That's why he won't come upstairs. I thought being alone together yesterday would help, but apparently not." When he looks at me, his eyes are pained. "I love having you around, Kit, but I can't stand to see my family breaking apart."

"I'm sorry," I whisper, voice cracking.

Sage shakes his head and stands up. "Don't apologise to me." Without another word, he walks out of the study, door clicking shut behind him. I worry at my lip, hands clenching and unclenching. He didn't yell at me, but he sounded so disappointed. And that's so much worse.

I try to get back into my assignments, but I can't concentrate; Sage's words keep spinning around and around in my head. Finally, I close the laptop and go to the window, pushing it open. I don't want to talk to anyone right now, and the only place I can think where no one would try to find me is the roof. Thankfully, there's a trellis outside of the window, solidly attached to the side of the house, and I manage to scale it pretty easily. I crawl to the middle of the roof, drawing up my knees and peering over the edge. The shingles are warm against my feet.

My toes curl as I rest my chin on my knees, frowning. My earlier queasiness hasn't left—in fact, it's increased. I didn't mean to hurt Sei, I really didn't. But he was…why would he get that close to me? He knows how I feel about him. He knows—

But it's my fault. This whole thing is my fault. If I wasn't here, then the family wouldn't be falling apart. Sei wouldn't be hiding in the basement and Sage wouldn't be upset. Hell, I bet even Neve would be happier, if he's capable of that.

Okay, I can fix this. I can. I just need to talk to Sei, go to his room and see him…

My stomach turns and I press my face harder against my knees. I can't do that, I can't just…I can't. Why did I go on that date with him? Why? We were fine before. Well, not fine, but…but now things are worse and I don't know what to do. If I talk to him…then what if I freak out again? They look nothing alike, but they're both vampires and…

Bile rises in my throat and I swallow, fighting the urge to throw up. I managed to push those memories back, I didn't think hard about them for years, and now…now it's all I can think about. God, if had just been Felix, if there hadn't been any other husbands, things would've been fine. I would've been happy. I know I could've been happy with Felix.

Shoulders hunched, I squeeze my eyes shut tighter, taking a shuddering breath. I can't handle this anymore. The constant disappointment the constant judging, the constant…fights, I just can't do it! No matter how hard I try, this marriage just…isn't working…

Swallowing, I peer over my knees, eyeing the edge of the roof again. The house is tall, two stories. And the driveway's right below, paved… Is it possible to die from a two-storey fall?

Teeth digging into my lip, I edge closer, shingles rough beneath my hands. If I fall right, if I hit at the right angle…

"Kit?"

I gasp in surprise, jerked roughly from my dark thoughts. Whipping my head to the side, I watch in shock as Sei easily and gracefully walks across the roof toward me. He stops in front of me, long hair blowing in the light breeze, brow furrowed.

"What are you doing up here?"

Wrenching my eyes away from him, I squeeze my knees and press my lips together. "You know why."

After a moment, Sei sits next to me, leaning back on his hands and sighing. "Yeah, I know. Sage told me about talking to you."

"Why are you here?" I mumble, the guilt making me unable to look at him. Vampire or not, I shouldn't have thrown him into a wall.

"To talk to you. I know you probably don't want to, but I don't want you staying on this roof forever, either." I see him scratch his head from the corner of my eye. "I know you didn't mean to throw me into a wall. But I want to make sure you know I wasn't trying to do anything to you. I don't know why you think I'm out to get you, but…" He sighs, shrugging. "Whatever. That's your business, I guess."

"I'm sorry," I whisper, voice choked. "Sages says it's my fault you're hiding all the time. I'm fucking everything up." Even if I don't like him, even if I'm afraid of him, I can't stand that I've ruined so much.

"Kit, don't freak out again." He sighs and I hear him shift. "Look. You really need to sort some shit out. You don't need to talk to me, but talk to Sage at least. Felix. Hell, you even seem comfortable around Faolan. The way you're going, nothing's ever gonna get fixed."

"I can't talk to them about it," I whisper, gripping my knees tighter. "You already know about the slave thing; I don't want you knowing anymore."

"So I'm just supposed to put up with you avoiding me forever?"

Silently, I shake my head. That wouldn't be fair.

Sei sighs, exasperated. "Then what, Kit? Are you even gonna try to get along, or is yesterday what I should always expect?"

I flinch at his hard tone and the truth of his words. "I'll try harder," I whisper, trying not to cry. I haven't felt this awful since…I don't even know. Even when the slavers got me, it was mostly just fear. But this guilt and crushing depression…

A cool hand touches my head, stroking down my back. Rather than pull away, I lean into the touch, rubbing at my eyes. I hear Sei shift, and then an arm's wrapped around my shoulders and I'm pressed against his side. He sits very still, as though dealing with a skittish animal, and I slowly, very slowly relax. Sei continues stroking my hair, repeating the gentle action over and over again, until I close my eyes and rest my head on his shoulder. Somehow, I don't feel threatened. Right now, he feels no different than Sage.

"I know you're upset," Sei whispers against my hair, massaging my shoulder. "But you don't need to be. I'm not mad. Sage isn't mad. Nobody hates you. Okay?"

I can't help but laugh at that. "Neve hates me. And even if you're being nice to be, I bet you hate me." But I don't pull away.

"I don't hate you." He squeezes my arm, and then returns to petting my hair. "I'm just…frustrated. It's hard to live with someone who wants nothing to do with you."

Pressing my face against his shoulder, I try to swallow my guilt. "You're just so fucking scary."

Sei doesn't say anything for awhile. Finally, he says, "You're pretty fuckin' scary yourself."

I jerk my head up, a disbelieving laugh leaving my mouth. "What? How?"

Sei looks at me, face neutral. "Kit, you threw me into a wall."

"That was an accident…"

"Which makes it worse. That means you threw me into a wall without meaning to. If it had been Sage, he'd be in the hospital right now." My heart clenches at the thought. "The only reason I'm okay is cuz vampires are built to be resilient."

"I don't see how me not meaning it makes it worse," I mumble, eyes fixed on the dark shingles below us.

Sei sighs. "It's worse because it shows your lack of control. It's worse because it means I don't know what'll set you off. Basically, you're like a minefield. I don't know what you'll do."

I straighten, glaring at him indignantly. "Like you're any better! Or have you forgotten that you tried to strangle me?"

Grimacing, Sei shakes his head. "I'm not perfect. I lose control, too. I just want you to understand that you're not the only one struggling with this whole thing."

My lip curls, the annoyance not abating. "At least you don't have to worry about me ripping out your throat."

Sei simply looks back at me, impassive. "Oh yeah? I know your teeth aren't just for show. There's a reason the world is scared of demons, Kit, and it's not because of any antiquated thoughts that you came from Hell. You are strong and you are fast, and you are the only race known to go into beserker mode when you haven't gone rogue. In the eyes of the world, Kit, demons are the closest things we have to monsters."

I stare at him, at a loss for words. I don't even know what to say. I want to hit him.

Seeing the look on my face, Sei sighs, running his fingers through my hair. "What I'm trying to say is that it isn't fair to talk about how scary I am without thinking about yourself." His lips quirk up slightly. "I'm not calling you a monster, Kit; I know you're not."

I tilt my chin up, eyes narrowed. "But I don't know you're not."

Sei's mouth thins at that, whole body tensing. I'm surprised to see the hurt flash across his face. "Is that really what you think about me?"

"You haven't given me any reason not to." I know I'm just being stubborn, but I don't care—Sei's the bad guy here, not me.

Hands clenching, Sei sits still for a moment, before shaking his head and quickly getting to his feet. He doesn't say anything, before walking away from me and disappearing over the edge of the roof.

"Shit." I scramble to my feet and run across the roof, peering over the edge. Sei is climbing down a flight of stairs that I've never noticed before. Swearing, I dash back to the trellis and clamber down, before sprinting around the side of the house. I follow Sei down the stairs and through the basement door, scowling when I hear his bedroom door close. Reaching it, I yank the door open and step inside, shutting it behind me. Sei sits at his desk, glancing over his shoulder.

"What do you want?" His voice is as blank as his face, and I feel the guilt well up.

"You're not a monster."

Sei watches me for a moment, before turning to open his laptop. "If that's all you want to say, you can leave."

"Sei!" I push away from the door, storming over to spin Sei's chair around. He looks surprised, but then his face twists into a glare, dark eyes narrowing. "I didn't mean it, okay? I know you're trying."

"Apparently not hard enough." He tries to turn around, but my arms cage him in and I stop the chair from moving. He stares up at me, mouth thin and hands clenching around the arms of the chair. "What exactly do you want from me?"

My mouth opens and shuts, and I shake my head. I try not to tremble. "I don't know, Sei." Things were calm on the roof and I felt…almost safe. But then… "I don't know. I just… We have to get along, right? This isn't right." I take a deep, shuddering breath, trying to calm down. Breathe. "I should…talk to you. I think."

"We tried that," Sei points out, eyebrow raised sardonically. "That didn't really work."

"No, I mean…talk. You…I…I am scared of vampires. Really scared. You know that. But I, um…" I finally step back, rubbing the back of my neck. I'm not doing this, I'm not. I shuffle over to his bed, needing to sit down. I can't look at him.

Sei seems to sense the change and he slowly, carefully stands up and comes to sit next to me. I barely even flinch, for which I'm rather proud. Sei levels his dark eyes on me, the slightest frown on his face.

"It's okay," he says softly, although it's not and never has been. I thought maybe I'd gotten over it after all these years, but I haven't. And…I owe him an explanation, no matter how much I don't want to talk.

"I…I was…" I swallow hard, covering my eyes with my hands, as though that can shut out my past and my words. "I was a Feeder."

"…what?" Sei's voice is soft, disbelieving. I choke.

"A Feeder. I, uh…" I twitch, licking dry lips, still hiding my eyes. "I was a blood junkie. For two years."

Sei is quiet for so long that I think he's left, but when I uncover my eyes, he's staring stonily at the wall.

"Sei…?"

"So. You're one of those." His voice is tight, angry. I take a shuddering breath. "A drug addict."

"It wasn't my fault!" I twist, wide eyes on him. He needs to understand. "I didn't want to…"

Sei finally looks at me, dark eyes narrowed and shoulders stiff. "What didya think would happen, making yourself a Feeder?"

"I didn't want to," I repeat, the old fear, old disgust closing my throat and making my eyes water. "I didn't want to!"

Sei sighs, rubbing his face. "Then what, Kit, you slept with a guy who turned out to be a vampire? He bit you and you couldn't get enough? S'at it?"

"I was twelve." I force out the words, vision swimming. I don't want to talk about this.

Abruptly, Sei's hand falls away, head whipping around and wide eyes fixing on my face. "What?"

"Twelve." Barely more than a whisper. "I was twelve."

Sei takes a moment, searching my face. "Kit, what happened?" His voice is suddenly serious and soft, eyes boring into mine.

"My foster brothers," I whisper, trying and failing to keep my voice steady. "They were vampires. They knew what I was. I had to do what they said." My breath is coming quicker, more panicked. "I didn't think it would be so bad. I…I thought everything would be okay."

"Fuck…Kit…" Sei's hand touches my arm and I suck in air.

"I don't remember a lot. I was a Feeder for two years. It was like…being drugged. Moments of…knowing what was happening. But…" I shake my head, shoulders hunched. "That's why I'm so scared of you, Sei. I just…can't help it."

"It's okay, Kit." Sei turns slightly and carefully slides his arms around me. Suddenly, it doesn't matter what he is; I throw myself at him, burying my face against his chest, hands grabbing, clinging. I just need to feel safe and right now, he's the only one that can do that. Like on the roof, Sei pets my hair, although his hold is a lot tighter, stronger. He rocks me gently, murmuring gentle words in my ear, and after a moment, I realise I'm crying. The realisation only makes me cry harder. It's been nine years, but the memories, as blurred as they are, are just as fresh in my mind as the years I made them.

I look up, cheeks wet and eyes sore, and I just need to know. I need to know if Sei is safe, if he'll hurt me…if I can trust him. I reach up, grasping the back of his head, and pull him down, pressing our mouths together. He lets out a surprised sound, which I muffle as I part his lips with my tongue, tightening my hold. He eventually pulls away, gasping.

"Kit, what the hell are you doing?"

"Sei, just…just let me. Okay? Please. Just…" I climb into his lap and press against him, catching his mouth in another kiss. It's hard and demanding, and I tangle my fingers in his hair, waiting for the moment that he snaps and attacks me.

That moment never comes. Instead, Sei slowly, carefully starts to return the kiss, hands landing gently on my hips. He lets me remain in control, head tilting when I tug on his hair, and hands doing nothing more than massaging my thin bones. I groan against his mouth, tongue sliding in…and wince when my tongue catches on something sharp. Abruptly, Sei shoves me back, his cheeks flushed and breath coming quick. His eyes look even blanker. I taste blood.

"No more," he pants, hands tightening on my hips, but I try to pull him down again.

"No, it's fine, just…" But Sei turns his head, face twisted.

"Kit, no." When I try again, he growls, and I suddenly find myself on my back, staring up at Sei. His hair slides over his shoulder like a dark curtain, hands like vices on my arm. It's only now that I stare up at him, vulnerable, that I'm afraid. What the hell was I thinking?

"Kit, listen to me." His face softens, although his hold doesn't loosen. "You're upset and I don't want you doing anything you'll regret." He slowly lowers himself next to me, pulling me back into his arms. "I'll hold you, but nothing else. Okay? Just relax. Breathe."

I squirm, trying to get loose. "Sei, I know what I'm doing—"

"No, Kit, you don't. Lie still." He presses my face against his chest, stroking my back. Despite myself, I find myself lulled by the sound of his heartbeat and the motion of his hand. He's not that warm, but he's not as cold as Neve.

Slowly, I calm down, relaxing in his hold. I'm suddenly tired, energy drained, and my eyes slip shut. I shouldn't fall asleep, but…

"It's okay, Kit," Sei murmurs, sliding his fingers through my hair. "Just sleep."

Sighing, I give in.

._.-.-._.

I wake up alone and disoriented, feeling the slightest moment of panic when I can't figure out where I am, the smell of the bed strange. But the sound of typing attracts my attention, and I peer over my shoulder to see Sei working on his laptop. Everything comes back to me.

Oh, God.

Ashamed, I burrow deeper into the blankets, hiding my face against the pillow and accidentally breathing in Sei's scent. I bite my lip. I shouldn't be here.

A hand touches my shoulder and I jolt in surprise, gasping. I didn't even hear him move.

"Are you okay?"

Mouth shut, I nod, reluctantly glancing over my shoulder. I'm surprised to see him wearing glasses.

Sei gives me a soft smile, brushing the hair from my forehead. "It's after supper. Are you hungry?"

Now that I think about it, I realise that my stomach hurts. Guess that's what happens when I don't anything since breakfast.

"Yeah," I whisper, voice hoarse. I clear my throat, pushing myself up, but Sei doesn't move away. He's staring at me intensely, dark eyes searching my face for…something. I watch him carefully, confused, but then he pulls back and the strange moment is broken. Straightening, he slides off his glasses, sliding his ponytail back over his shoulder.

"If you go upstairs, you can probably get Sage to make you something." Sei walks back to his computer, sitting down. I frown, wondering at his sudden…well, not coldness, but he's not being as friendly as earlier.

Shaking my head, I throw back the blankets and stand up, blinking rapidly when my vision swims. Glancing once more at Sei, I head for the door.

"Hey, Kit?"

I stop, glancing back. Sei's face is serious, eyes narrowed slightly.

"You don't need to worry about that happening here. I will never do that to you."

I don't need to ask what he means. And the fact that he didn't do anything while I was asleep has made my trust start to grow.

I nod, and then quickly leave the room, heading upstairs. It's only as I reach the kitchen that I remember how Sage and I last parted. My steps slow. But…it should be fine now…right? Sei and I have made peace. I think.

It turns out I'm worrying for nothing, because nobody's in the kitchen when I step inside. Letting out a relieved sigh, I instantly head for the fridge, hoping to find leftovers or something. I'm not in the mood to cook anything.

I'm surprised to find a plate covered in plastic wrap and with a note.

Kit—you missed supper. Thought you might be hungry.

There's no name, but I can only assume it was Sage. I smile and unwrap the plate, mouth watering at the sight of chicken breast. Grabbing a fork, I sit at the table and start eating, not caring that the food is cold. After losing electricity in my old apartment, I got used to cold meals.

Once I finish the chicken, I reluctantly turn my attention to the broccoli and rice. It tastes fine, sure, but I'm primarily a meat-eater.

Footsteps make me pause and look up, brown eyes fixing on Felix. He blinks at me, before smiling and walking across the kitchen.

"Where've you been? Haven't seen you since breakfast."

I lower my gaze to my plate, spearing a piece of broccoli with my fork. "I was with Sei."

"Sei?" Felix sounds surprised, and I look up again when the chair across from me scrapes against the tiled floor. "What were you doing?"

Spilling deep, dark secrets. "Talking. Like Sage wanted."

Felix's brow furrows as he squints. "Sage? Why, did something happen?"

"He didn't tell you?" Shaking my head, I eat a scoop of rice. "I was trying to make peace, since…well." I shrug. "I'm a part of this now, right? This marriage. And I want to make an effort to get along with everyone." Even if those efforts usually go sour.

When I glance up, Felix is smiling, eyes warm. He reaches across the table and catches my hand, kissing the palm. I flush.

"I'm really happy to hear you say that," he murmurs, breath tickling my skin. His thumb strokes my wrist and I shiver, biting my lip. I really want to kiss him. I don't know why, but I do.

But, no—I promised myself a fresh start.

I carefully pull my hand back, my smile weak and awkward. I try not to notice the flash of hurt in Felix's eyes as I do.

"So, yeah. I talked to Sei and I'm gonna try to not be afraid of him."

"Why are you afraid of him?"

But I'm not going through that again. "I just have a bad history with vampires." I finish eating and stand up to wash my plate.

Felix grimaces, bright green eyes filling with sympathy. I feel a bit bad about not telling him, because he's just so… He cares about me and I feel like I'm lying to him—but I can't tell him. I didn't even really want to tell Sei and only did so he'd understand why it's hard to be around him. And as a test.

Arms wrap around my waist and my heart skips a beat in surprise, but I manage to relax. Felix rests his chin on my shoulder, fingers lacing over my stomach.

"We should go do something."

"Like what?" My resolve is beginning to crumble.

I feel him shrug. "I dunno. A movie? A walk? Whatever you want to do; I'm not picky."

Leaning back against his chest, I carefully place my hands over his. "Um…a movie? I guess? But let's stay here."

"Sure." He kisses my neck and pulls back, tangling our fingers together. I let him lead me out of the kitchen, swallowing hard. But I can't bring myself to pull my hand away.

Instead of the living room, we head upstairs and to Felix's room. The reason why is soon answered when I spot the TV against the wall at the end of the bed.

"Was this always here?" I ask, wondering why I'd never noticed it before. It's not exactly small.

"Nah, just got it. Neve always complains that I hog the TV, so I decided to get one." He pushes me over to the bed, patting the mattress. "Get comfy and I'll go see what I have in here."

Watching him walk over to the TV, I crawl onto the bed, Felix's scent making me shiver. I don't think I've ever been in this bed for innocent reasons. I awkwardly adjust the pillows and curl up, tracking Felix as he whistles and searches through the shelves of DVDs next to the TV. After a few seconds, he straightens and sticks in a movie, before hopping onto the bed and crawling up to me. He wraps an arm around me and holds me close. Hiding a grimace, I relax against him, carefully resting my head on his shoulder as the screen fills up with tornados and people screaming.

"Disaster movie?" I ask, eyebrow raised.

"You would've chosen something depressing."

I decide not to point out the irony in that statement, instead rolling my eyes and attempting to follow the plot.

Just as I'm finally getting a grasp on what's happening, the door opens and Sage peeks him, eyes flicking between the two of us. I instantly remember our earlier conversation and shrink against Felix, eyeing Sage warily. But he simply smiles benignly and steps inside, closing the door behind him. I'm surprised when he walks to the bed and slides up beside me, reaching out to squeeze Felix's shoulder briefly. Felix smiles quickly, before returning his attention to the movie.

Sage curls next to me, and softly murmurs, "Thank you," brushing his fingers through my hair. I don't need an explanation to understand what he means. I relax and smile awkwardly at him, leaning into the touch. Part of me wonders if he talked to Sei or read someone's mind, but the rest of me doesn't want to know how much he found out either way. He's not looking at me any differently, but that means nothing—he hides things well.

Luckily, he turns his attention to the movie, settling in comfortably against me and resting a warm hand on my leg. I flush slightly, but force myself to focus on the screen and ignore his proximity. It's difficult, especially when Sage sighs and snuggles closer, his soft hair brushing my cheek. I shift uncomfortably, trying not to think about his fingers and warm breath, but Felix on my other side isn't helping. Trapped between them, I'm flushed and distracted, mind returning again and again to flashes of naked skin and twisted sheets.

By the time the movie ends, I'm ready to run off and cool down, but Sage keeps a hold of me while Felix finds another movie. Sage combs his fingers through my hair, cheek still on my shoulder.

"I talked to Sei," he murmurs, answering my unspoken question. His voice is too low for Felix to hear.

I swallow hard, blood instantly cooling. "And what…what did he tell you?"

Sage continues stroking my hair, thumb moving in soothing circles behind my ear. "He just told me you'd had problems with vampires in the past, but none of the details."

I slump in relief, eyes briefly falling shut. Sage continues petting me, something that seems to be becoming a habit, before adding quietly, "You don't have to tell me. So don't worry, okay?"

Hardly believing my luck, I quickly nod, fixing my eyes on Felix for a distraction. He raises an eyebrow at me, but I just shrug. Losing the concerned look on his face, he returns to the bed and settles next to me. The movie starts and I startle when he weaves his fingers with mine. A quick glance my way, searching, but I relax and leave my hand where it is. I can handle a bit of affection.

Affection…

Suddenly, images of me throwing myself at Sei fills my mind and I can feel my face going pale. How much did Sei tell him…?