Excerpt Deke hated fireworks.
He was sure it was some kind of freaky-deaky holdover from his lupine side, the same instinct that made dogs worldwide run and bark at thunderstorms. Anything that made such a threatening sound had to be given a good bark and bristle. It was defiance of nature at its most simple.
He still hated the damned things. The noise hurt his ears, the bright lights, if he happened to be too close, invariably ruined his night vision, and the twirly, woo-woo ones made him want to howl.
Kasey came to stand at the big plate-glass window that separated him from the worst of it this year, handing him a beer. "You doing okay, lover?"
"What do you think?" Muscles jumped under Deke's skin when another round of fireworks went off, streaking the sky with purple and red and blue, like some weird impressionist thing. Only with fire. And popping. He wondered if Monet or whatever the big painter dude's name was liked fireworks.
"I think you're a little tense." That grin spoke volumes about how amused his vamp lover was with the whole thing. Kasey thought his wolf-like qualities were hilarious.
"Mmm." Kasey sipped something from a crystal goblet, something dark and red and spicy.
"Who donated?" Deke could feed Kasey alone, and did most of the time. Kasey only mixed vamp blood with wine, saying it was almost like doing speed.
"Jonny. You know he likes it when I bleed him a little."
"Yeah." That image was almost pretty enough to calm him down. Almost. Then his leg started jittering again, and Deke sighed. Fuck a duck, that noise.
"I think you're looking at this the wrong way, lover." Moving close, Kasey leaned against his back, stroking one hand over his shoulder and arm. The silk robe Kasey wore rubbed against his bare back, Kasey's long hair sliding over his arm.
"Am I? How?" He was looking at it the only way he could. Through the window. If he went outside he'd end up running in circles and barking until someone took him to the loony bin. Or the pound.
"I think there's a rhythm to all of this. It reminds me of other kind of banging."
"You're reaching." But it made him smile, that Kasey was trying to ease him out of his bad mood with a little uglies-bumping.
"It's a holiday. One of yours, admittedly, but a holiday nonetheless." Somewhere, way back in his long life, Kasey was British or some such. He didn't really sound it too much anymore, though. Kasey leaned harder, long black hair sliding forward to touch Deke's ribs. "Holidays should be spent enjoying one's favorite activities."