Forbidden Alliance A Werewolf's Tale
Author:Danae Ayusso

I settled the check while Jay Dee used the loo. I didn’t want her to see the thousand-dollar plus tip tab. It drove me nutter how cheap and humble she was. Usually when you tell a woman to order whatever she wants, they order the most expensive thing on the menu simply because it’s expensive. But no, not Jay Dee. Heaven forbid Jay Dee do something completely expected of a six-foot, blonde, supermodel looking seventeen year old! She picked the shonkiest thing on the menu simply because it was shonky! And obviously she was hungry; she ate as much food as I did, which was saying a lot. Never had I met a woman that could put down two eighteen-ounce steaks and some of everything on the menu. It was beyond impressive, and as ridiculous as it was to say, really sexy.

Women with appetites were a major turn on.

The wait staff eventually asked us to leave as it was well past closing time, and well past the time Jay Dee was supposed to be home; I was silently praying that she wouldn’t get into a barney, because if she were grounded, it’d mean that I couldn’t see her tomorrow and I so desperately longed to see her again. The amusing thing was, neither of us had noticed that we were alone in the small restaurant; we were completely preoccupied with each other.

As we talked, our chairs moved closer and closer, until our bodies were eventually touching and her leg wrapped around mine under the table. The contact sent a burning line of desire ripping through me, and more than once I had to look away from her as I struggled to remind myself that she was human, a mere teenager, and that I was a three-century vampire that didn’t fancy young, blonde humans.

It did very little to resolve the problem that had aroused in my trousers.

It had been more years than I cared to attempt to remember since I’d felt so at ease talking with someone. There was something about Jay Dee that caused me to open up and say the words that I had fought for centuries to bury deep within me. Somehow she effortlessly resurrected within me the poet, romantic, human, but most importantly, Tanis. It didn’t matter what I said, or how off-colored and slightly morbidly depressing it came out, she never questioned it. Jay Dee was completely accepting of everything I told her, and more than once a tear formed in the corners of her eyes from my admissions. It was a struggle to keep my hands to myself; they were literally shaking with a longing which I had never known before. Never had I wanted to caress a woman’s cheek, to wipe away the tears building in her large, onyx eyes, more than I did during dinner. And it was damn near the death of me to keep from pressing my lips to hers for a snog. I wasn’t sure if she’d welcome the intimate exchange or hit me over it—the stubborn woman was rather difficult to read at times.

When Jay Dee stepped out of the loo to join me, a smile consumed my face and my heart raced. That type of reaction to a human, to anyone for that matter, wasn’t normal and it should have terrified me. Change for vampires, especially physical change…being a vampire had nothing to do with it; change for narked, cynical arseholes like myself was never good. I hadn’t smiled in years, centuries it felt like, and I hadn’t laughed like that in longer than I could remember, and yet each I was doing without thought or question, without second guessing why I was happy…why I deserved to be happy and feel and experience the most simplistic of emotions, and I loved it. I hadn’t realized how much my closed off, narked at the world, cynical pessimistic nature had taken from me…had kept me from.

“Are you positive you are not going to get in a barney, Miss Jay Dee?” I asked, opening the door for her, offering her my hand but she didn’t take it.

Bloody, stubborn self-sufficient bird!

Jay Dee chewed on her little finger while she waited for me to join her, her eyes following my every move. Sadly, I had to take my time because it was stimulating in all the wrong ways at the moment, and I hadn’t a table to hide my arousal under.

A soft, almost perverse purr rolled from between her lips when I joined her and I visibly shivered, and my eyes fought to roll in the back of my head.

She is the bloody devil!

“If you mean trouble, not likely. But can I use your phone?” Jay Dee asked and it was in front of her before she finished asking. “That vampire speed is so damn cool!” she giggled, dialing the mobile.

Now I have her number!

“Hey Jarvis,” she whispered.

“Where in the hell are you?” Jarvis demanded, his voice echoing throughout the interior of the car, causing the phone’s reception to break up slightly.

“Bellingham,” Jay Dee groaned and rolled her eyes. “I lost track of time at dinner, but we’re on our way back now. Will you tell Mom and Dad that I’m sorry I’m late and it was totally an accident? Pretty please?” she pouted, making a face and I snorted at her theatrics.

“Dude, Dad is freaking out! One of those goddamn suckheads are missing.”

“So?” she huffed. “Not about Dad but about the vampire. Who cares if one is missing or dropping way too much money on overly priced Italian food. Big deal.”

I smiled; she was such a naughty thing.

Jarvis ignored her. “You know how the pack is! They’re hell bent that he’s on a murderous rampage! Are you okay? You didn’t see any suckheads did you? You know that suckheads have an appetite for hot, blonde virgins in the moonlight and you fit into that first victim in a vampire flick mold pretty damn well, Sis.”

“I do not!” she shot back, her cheeks flushing a delicious shade of red.

Murderous rampage? What in bloody hell…wait, she’s a virgin? I like the sound of that way more than I should.

“And don’t worry about the missing vampire,” Jay Dee said, pulling me from the outlandish and very perverted images that were suddenly flooding my mind, “the only thing he killed was a butt load of Italian food and like six bottles of wine.”

I rolled my eyes, turning the car around and headed towards the highway.

I should give her a bloody spanking for that.

There was a moment of silence on the line.

“Sis, who in the hell are you with?” Jarvis choked.


“Please, oh God, please tell me he’s some new kid who has an expiration date of less than a century!” he pleaded, whined and pouted all at the same time.

I thought Jarvis was her brother, not her sister! What a whiny bird.

Jay Dee roared with laughter and it made me smile; I loved her laugh. It was so carefree and womanly like the rest of her, but it was youthful and filled with an innocence and sense of adventure for life that was admirable and addictive. I envied it because I wanted that in my laugh as well, but I was well aware that just being in the presence of the woman, of the source of the unbridled innocence and wonder, was more than I deserved so I wouldn’t allow it to make me narked or bitter.

“This isn’t funny, young lady!” Jarvis snapped, suddenly turning from her brother to her sister, and now her father.

“Yup, it is,” she said, making a silly popping sound emphasizing the P. “I will be home soon, and don’t worry, he doesn’t want to suck my blood,” she said the latter sounding like The Count from Sesame Street. I was waiting for her to go ‘One vampire, ha ha ha. Two vampires, ha ha ha.’ That’s one of Steffen’s daft jokes when he’s all to pot.

“Dad is going to kill you,” Jarvis said, pronouncing each word deliberately so nothing was lost in translation.

Jay Dee closed her eyes and twirled a lock of her white blonde hair around her fingers, her lips twisting into a delicate, sexy, unconsciously seductive pout and my hands were once again shaking with longing.

I peeked down at my crotch and silently berated myself.

You are over three hundred years old and you can’t control your prick around this bird? What is your problem?!

I didn’t have an answer, but thankfully Jay Dee was too distracted by her rambling, infantile brother to notice my distress and arousal.

“No he won’t,” she finally said, pulling my attention. “If he wants to be mad at me, tell him to consider it an early birthday present. See you soon, Bro.” She hung up the mobile and handed it to me. “Thanks and sorry about that, I know your super hearing picked all that up.”

“Do not worry about it, Miss Jay Dee. I have heard worse, and I do not have super hearing…it was just rather difficult to ignore a man who speaks that loudly on the phone and in such a heightened level of feminine hysterics. Early birthday present?” I asked, changing the subject.

“Yeah, they marked my birthday as the day I joined the Lhaq'temish and’s on Friday,” she said with a shrug. “And you better not have super hearing,” she mumbled the last part under her breath so I ignored it. I was too irritated at the stubborn woman for keeping her birthdate from me. In all fairness, it didn’t come up in conversation, but still.

“Allow me to ask you this,” I said when I pulled onto the highway, “if you could have anything in the world that could buy, what would it be? There are no restrictions, however it has to be purchasable or within reason. Asking for immortality is not within reason,” I quickly added; that was all I didn’t need, a teenager asking for me to bite her so we could spend eternity hating each other.

Jay Dee sighed and looked out the side window. And after five miles of silence she answered, “A really nice digital camera and laptop for my brother. That way he can capture all of the amazing and unimaginable things he’s seeing in Europe. And hopefully he wouldn’t be an asscrack and would email me pictures so I can experience them with him…in a sense.”

Bugger. I should have seen that one coming.

Yes, I should have. It fit into her personality perfectly, and a part of me would have been disappointed if she hadn’t said something irritatingly humble like wanting something for her daft brother. But at the same time, I had to press it to make sure that she was real. People…human, vampire, werewolf, witch, it didn’t matter…like her didn’t exist. That I knew of. Secretly, I kept waiting for the mirage effect to fade away, revealing the ugly reality, and that’d be when I found out that she wasn’t an amazing, beautiful, humble, caring, considerate and empathetic creature, and instead she was really a boring, mundane demon in guise, and was solely on this earth to taunt me with false hope for the future, and to teasingly wave potential happiness in front of me but just out of reach.

“You may have anything in the world, anything at all, and you want something for someone else for your birthday?” I asked the obvious.

Please be real. Please be real.

Jay Dee lolled her head to the side and smirked; the look on her face made it more than apparent that I had just asked the daftest question in the world, and honestly, I might have, but inside I was smiling like a nipper with their first nudie mag.

“Miss Jay Dee, in all of my many years of life, I do not think that I have ever met anyone like you,” I admitted before I could stop myself and she gave me an amused look. “It is frustrating yet mildly refreshing,” I quickly added the latter and she made a face which made me chuckle.

“Glad I could be of service,” she dryly said. “When’s your birthday?”

Bugger. I walked into that one.

“It was harder to keep track of that type of thing when I was born, since we used sundials and hourglasses in the year of Our Lord. However, if I had to venture a guess, it was in the early spring. Me brother sends flowers in the spring to celebrate me birthday. He says it is because when I was a nipper I would pick flowers and put them in me flowing golden locks, and would spin around in a petticoat and panniers.” I laughed, he was such a prick.

“That is a very disturbing mental picture,” Jay Dee said in a level voice.

I shrugged, trying to keep from laughing. “Sometime in March most likely,” I finally told her since she wasn’t finding me nearly as amusing as I was finding myself at that moment. “Why do you ask?”

Jay Dee ignored my question and asked one of her own; I hated it when she did that. “Same question. If you could have anything that money can or can’t buy, what would it be?” she asked then chewed on her little finger, looking at me with those large, onyx eyes, her long black lashes appeared to be waving at me as she batted them in a slow, torturous, almost methodical manner.

The woman was a bloody demon and didn’t even know it!

“I’m waiting,” she playfully sang, resting her head on my shoulder and looked up at me, a soft, beautiful smile filled her face, making her appear angelic and delicate, but the mischief dancing in her deep dark eyes told the truth; she was anything but.

To be honest, I liked her head on my shoulder. It felt right…if there was a sense or feeling which should have accompanied the action, it would have been that. Having Jay Dee touching me, teasing me, talking to me, hell, just spending time with me, felt right. And I like it way more than was appropriate, especially considering she was human and I was a vampire, she was young and I was old, she was a virgin and I was not, but most importantly, she was innocent and I was anything but.

It was wrong, but wrong never felt so right.

Jay Dee is a human, a teenager at that, and I’m a seventeenth century vampire who is finally looking at the world through rose tinted glass… Bloody hell, the annoying, deeply buried romantic would have to rear his annoying head when at the most inopportune time.

“I never really thought about it,” I eventually admitted since telling her the truth, what I thought I wanted from her, would have scared her off, and, not to mention, was felonious in the states. “When I figure it out I will let you know,” I offered, hopelessly, when she pouted.

“And I’ll put a bow on it for you,” Jay Dee assured me with a level of finality in her voice to the likes of nothing I had ever heard before, and she leaned back and resumed looking out the window.

Bugger! She did not have to go and do that. I rather was enjoying the heat emanating from her cheek on my shoulder. I can still feel the warmth of her inadvertent touch…I wonder if all of her is that warm? Ugh! Bloody hell. I haven’t been laid in months and now it’s coming back to bite me in the arse.

Reel it in, Tanis. You are a goddamn vampire, a three hundred year old vampire that has unprecedented control over the calling, so you should be able to control your bloody prick around a young bird!

“I really did have a nice time tonight,” Jay Dee said softly, pulling my attention from the internal argument I had slipped into with myself. Possibly she knew that I was losing it, in a matter of speaking, and that I needed a distraction so she was offering me one without making it obvious.

It was a nice thought.

“Thank you for dinner. It was exceptional,” she continued, her eyes moving over my face many times, “and I’m sorry for being a pain in the ass about the monetary thing. It isn’t easy for me to accept things from people, help or otherwise, y’know. That wasn’t how I was raised. So when a stranger comes along and spends over a grand on dinner with someone they just met, it tends to throw some flags up.”

Bloody hell, she knows how much dinner was? Shite.

I swallowed loudly. “We all have our little hang-ups,” I said. “I work very hard for me brass, so when I spend it I make sure that it is worth it, and you, Miss Jay Dee, are worth it. Admit it, you would have fought me over a thousand-dollar dinner or a five-dollar value meal,” I pointed out and the corners of her mouth twitched; I was right. “I do not understand entirely why everyone is so rude to you and treats you like a pleb...I mean scrubber...shite, never mind. I am not articulating meself very well.”

She nodded. “No shit?”

Sarcasm noted.

“You are not worthless, regardless of what the others you go to school with may think or say. I have met countless people in me lifetime and you are honestly one of the most interesting, fascinating, kind, caring and amazing people I have ever met. Unless you went on some type of killing spree that you are not telling me about, I do not get it. I am gobsmacked.”

Jay Dee sighed loudly. “I’m sorry. I don’t know what to tell you, but I can confirm that I didn’t go on a killing spree. Sometimes I wish I could though,” she said darkly before laughing. “What do you do?”

I smirked. “I do lots of things, what do you do?”

It was fun to poke the blonde little caged kitty simply because I could.

She cocked an eyebrow, not at all amused. “To earn money,” she clarified.

“Oh, that,” I dramatically said and she smacked me in the chest. “Ow. Abusive bird,” I hollowly complained so she smacked me again—it was, yet again, turning me on. “I yield. You cannot laugh,” I warned and she nodded. “I used to compose when I was younger. When the age of radio came along, I got into jingle writing. Me estate gets royalties from them still. I use various names to write under because writing music is too mainstream, but no one knows who writes jingles so it is safer that way.”

Even though she said she wouldn’t, she laughed. “Seriously?”


“Huh,” she said and eyed me, a look of contemplation washing across her face. “Yeah, I just don’t see it.”

I made a face causing her to smirk. “What did you expect? Something more pretentious like Ambassador of the British Vampire Legion?” I mumbled.

Her eyes widened.

Shite, I should not have said that.

“Jingle writing is a very honorable profession,” I assured her.

Jay Dee nodded, thankfully letting my slip go by not pressing it. “The radioman in the flesh! Oh wait, the radio jingle man. Plop plop, fizz, fizz,” she teased.

That was another spanking to be given at a later time.

“So you have heard of me work,” I mused and her mouth fell open with a popping sound. “Believe it or not, jingle writing is good dosh. I do not mean to brag, but I am well rich.”

Her shock was quickly replaced by something else, and she glared at me. “And what am I? The poor white wolf girl from the Res? Was this a sympathy dinner?” she demanded.

“No!” I assured her. “Why would...honestly, you need to look past the res and pack,” my top lip in-advertently snarled when I said the latter and she cocked an eyebrow, “to the beautiful package which is next to me. You are amazing. I assure you I was not trying to boast. I was a very failed way, mind you... trying to reassure you that spending the in which I did for dinner was nothing and not to fret over it.”

“Uh huh,” she said in a clipped tone but the fires burning in her eyes were extinguished.

“The estate we left in Paris was mine, and I have a few others from New York to Tokyo in me real estate portfolio. If you ever want to go on holiday...” my words trailed off.

Did I honestly just invite her to one of me estates for holiday? This is not going to end well.

“Amazing,” Jay Dee whispered with a smile but I wasn’t entirely sure what was so amazing about my very odd, extremely troubling, and slightly creepy, behavior. “How do you...why did you move to this shithole, other than your sister and her little control issue?” she asked, chewing on her little finger again.

Bloody hell that is hot.

Control issue had to be the understatement of a lifetime.

“Our coven is nearly twenty strong. In this last move, we separated because of the reason behind the quick relocation. Toran picked this location for some unknown reason. Typically we just go to a different estate. Collectively we have nearly fifty, however this time he only relocated himself, wife, and the ones you met at school. The others are in Wales.”

“Did he say why?”

No, Toran is the king of keeping secrets.

I parked outside of her house and turned to look at her, I had to look at her. “No. I asked, however, I was not in a clear state of mind when I did. I was still narked over the hasty relocation, thus everything I asked came out as irate accusations. Perhaps this week I will address it with him more maturely now that I am in a better place mentally.”

“So you’ve accepted small town life?” she teased.

“No, not at all,” I assured her. “However, I found the company to be better than I could have possibly imagined.” I didn’t mean to say that aloud, but she blushed and looked away from me.

Unable to deny it anymore, I reached out and caressed the backs of my fingers along the ridge of her jaw, then coaxed her by the chin so I could look at her. “Miss Jay Dee, why must you hide your face from me?” I whispered.

Jay Dee nervously chewed on her bottom lip and shrugged. “I don’t know. This is...I don’t know what in the hell it is but I know it’s new and I don’t know what in the hell do to.”

I smiled; I liked the way that sounded much more than I should have.

“Khalil Gibran once told me that ‘Beauty is not in the face; beauty is a light in the heart.’ And never did I understand those words until tonight,” I whispered, caressing my thumb across her full bottom lip and my breathing shuddered in my chest.

She opened to mouth to say something, and I longed to hear the words more than anything, but nothing came out.

The moment was perfect so I leaned into her, and her lips eagerly parted, and mine answered her silent pleas to taste them, to indulge myself in what I had been envisioning since the first moment I saw her, but the very intrusive sound of three distinct growls coming from the porch stopped me in mid-snog.

I leaned back and forced a smile. “Miss Jay Dee, I think you better go inside before your parents and brother rip me head off,” I said through a fabricated smile while trying to keep from growling myself.

Bloody wankers! You will not always be around to stop me. She is mine!

I shook my head to clear it and Jay Dee did likewise, but for very different reasons, I suppose. Never have I had such possessive thoughts and feelings towards anyone. I had absolutely no right to stake such claim to Jay Dee. We were different specifies, from different centuries, different society classes...and yet I couldn’t stop thinking of her as anything but mine.

This was going to end badly, I knew it.

Jay Dee leaned down and looked across me to the front door where her parents and brother were standing. “They sure do know how to kill the mood, huh?” she groaned. “Thanks again, Mr. Ashton,” she teased with a smile. “It was fun.”

She started to get out of the SUV but I grabbed her hand, stopping her. “Did you need...would you like a ride to school tomorrow?” I asked, trying to keep the possessiveness from flaring in my words, to keep from snarling at her family and locking the car doors, to keep from pulling her into my arms before speeding away like Snidely Whiplash with a new young maiden to keep hostage and all to myself...

I really needed to talk to someone about those outlandish thoughts and issues which were suddenly plaguing me and my commonsense.

“I’d like that very much,” she said with a face-consuming smile and it made me smile in return. “Goodnight, Tanis,” she whispered breathlessly and I fought the urge to moan and follow her into the house.

I watched her skip to the door as she argued with her parents and brother the entire way into the house in that unknown to me tribal language so I couldn’t understand them but I got the gist of it when Jarvis flipped me off before slamming the door behind them.

Once she was inside, I drove home. I wasn’t entirely sure how I got there, but Steffen knocked on the window before he opened the car door.

“Cousin, what are you doing?” he asked with a chuckle.

I looked up at him confused. “Hmm?”

“You’ve been sitting in the garage for an hour. Romeo and I were taking bets on whether you were trying to kill yourself or not, but you turned the car off before closing the garage door,” he said with a shrug.

“Huh? No, not trying to kill meself. I am simply thinking,” I admitted.

“That’s very dangerous for you,” he teasingly informed me.


He followed me inside the house and I went straight to my room; I was not in the mood for the interrogation which I knew would accompany coming in late, especially after the strange discussion I had with Toran before I left. However, Steffen wouldn’t leave me alone and ducked inside my room before I could close the door.

“You can’t get away from me that easily, Cousin. What’s up?” he said.

I rather have had Mum’s interrogation than Steffen’s nosiness at that moment.

“The ceiling, stars, clouds,” I stoically answered, disappearing into the closet to change.

“Okay, where were you?” he clarified and I silently cursed all that was holy for not paying better attention when I got home so I didn’t look nutter.

“Having dinner in Bellingham,” I said, exiting the closet, pulling a shirt over my head. “I am knackered, is there anything else?” I asked, thoroughly annoyed and climbed up on the bed.

Steffen followed, jumping up next to me and kicked his legs out in front of him, effectively making himself comfortable.

“Bloody hell, you are going to stay all night until I say something, huh?”

“You act like you just met me!” He smirked.


“I had dinner with a bird,” I mumbled.

“Ooh,” he squealed like a little girl. “Tell me all about it, did you kiss?” he purred and batted his lashes at me; I hated it when he pretended to be the gay brother.

“No, we did not snog. I wanted to...God knows I wanted to, but sadly I could not close the deal because of her bloody parents and narked brother.”

“That’s hilarious!” he roared with laughter but it was short lived. “Wait, what chick?”

I smiled, it was hard not to when thinking about her. “You know that bird with the arm on her? The one that can throw a fifty yard spiral like it is nothing?”

Steffen sat up and looked at me with wide eyes. “Holy shit! Seriously? The hot blonde with the legs that go on forever?”

I nodded with a face-consuming smile.

“The one with the round ass that appears to be teasing you with each step she takes?” he asked.

Again, I nodded; that was an understatement.

“The chick with the rack that...seriously, I don’t know how she didn’t knock herself out when playing football.”

I chuckled.

“Damn, how did you manage that one?” he asked, scratching his head.

“Long story, but in a nutshell, she does not care that I am a vampire.”

“Wait, what? She knows you’re a vampire?” he harshly whispered.

I nodded.

“Are you insane? You know that’s against the rules!” he reminded me.

“She lives on a reservation filled with werewolves so she was already well informed...well, as informed as a human girl living on a reservation with werewolves could be informed I suppose. What is peculiar though, she did not seem put off by it at all. No matter what I told her, she was completely accepting of it. I have never met anyone like her before...she fascinates me.”

Steffen looked at me curiously. He knew that I liked short brunettes, didn’t like humans, really didn’t like younger woman, and was seriously narked about moving here. Now I was smiling and content being where I was.

It wasn’t like me at all.

“You know you’re going to have to fight Romeo for her, right? He’s been gushing about tapping that all day,” he said.

I snarled but it was short lived. “He can try all he likes, he is not her type,” I informed him though I wasn’t sure what her type was exactly, but I was praying that it was tall, lean muscle, blond with masterfully done highlights and silver-streaked blue eyes...I was praying it was me.

“You know that won’t stop him,” he lovingly pointed out.

My smile confused him. “Trust me, Cousin, when I say that I do not have to worry about Romeo and his thrall. Miss Jay Dee wanted me thrall her after I got us a table at a crowded restaurant. I put a thousand times more effort than needed into it since she is so bloody stubborn, yet it did not register at all. She laughed at me in fact...she is immune. Romeo can try all he likes. Though he had better watch out, Miss Jay Dee is the type that would knee him in the bollocks and not think twice about it.”

“Now that’s a show I’d gladly pay to see,” he said with a chuckle. “I’m glad you had fun.”

“Thank you, I did. Can you drive tomorrow? I am picking her up for school.”

“Seriously? Whoa, please, oh please, let me tell Romeo.”

I rolled my eyes and dismissively waved him away, getting a playful punch in the arm in return. “Only if you let me get me beauty sleep,” I said and Steffen was gone, the door closing silently behind him.

This situation was interesting but very troubling, and it was entirely new to me so I was looking at it pessimistically as I always did.

Me cousin wants the bird I want, I mentally groaned, looking at the ceiling. Then again, he wants every bird; never had Romeo and I found the same bird or type of birds attractive—he likes airheaded charvas, and I am usually a closed off prick that didn’t want anything, let alone to know the bird’s name. Romeo is the least of my problems, honestly. Beside the fact that Jay Dee is human, young, innocence and untouched, she lives on a reservation full of werewolves...disgusting, questionable beasts that should have been eradicated centuries ago, in not-so-many words.

If Toran would have heard me say that aloud, he would have staked me and left me in the basement somewhere in a nearly permanent timeout.

And another problem, Jay Dee’s birthday was coming up, yet she does not want anything.

“You impossible to read bird,” I mumbled aloud. “What is your type, cheeky bird?”

I would have liked a snog. If it hadn’t been for her parents and brother glaring at us, I would have walked her to the door and, like a gentleman, gave her a peck goodnight.

“Next time I will not permit them to stop me,” I said, and the possessiveness I was trying to push out of my mind was back, and the thought of calling Jay Dee mine made me smile even more. “Only a few hours until I get a second chance,” I purred in perverse expectation, and looked over at the alarm clock and tried to will the glowing blue numbers to move faster.

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