Boreal Springs

December 14, 2009

Saunders 2 – Round 27: ‘Don’t Stand So Close To Me’

Filed under: Saunders — Tags: , , , , , , , — Mao @ 3:08 pm

Gordon Saunders has had everything under control for a long time.  Can he continue or will everything that’s happening around him get the best of him?  Claude and Emily Saunders didn’t really plan on kids, but now they’re waiting on number 2.  Gordon certainly isn’t pleased about the new addition…

“Did you think you could hide it forever?”

Emily shook her head, “we weren’t trying to hide, Gordon.  We were just waiting for the right time to tell you…”

“Where is my son, anyway?”

“Um…”

Claude walked in, his timing as impeccable as ever.  He looked as if he had just rolled out of his coffin, taking a seat lazily next to Emily, who was showing through her dress.

Gordon sighed, hand on his temples, “Claude, can’t you be punctual for anything?”

“I’m here, aren’t I?  Besides, who is on time for a lecture…”

“Neither of you have jobs, you’re living off my goodwill, despite the foolish mistakes and ridiculous games you’ve played.  Do not think my mercy is endless.  You know what happened to Emma.”

Claude shuddered.

“He’s right, you know,” Emily said, turning to him.  “You could show a little effort.”

“What?  Babe, come on, I’m way too pretty for work.”

Gordon cleared his throat, drawing both of their attention back to him, “this won’t happen again, will it?”

“No,” they both said simultaneously.  It wasn’t said, but implied that if it did, they’d both be in hot water.

After he was done scolding her parents, Gordon went to see little Selene.  He had been fine with her, just one child was hard to mess up, especially with him around to ensure that it doesn’t happen.  Two, however, with his schedule and the knowledge of Claude’s other two children out there… well, that made things complicated.

He looked into Selene’s eyes, brushing her curly hair away from her face, “promise me you won’t grow up to be an idiot like your father.  An old vampire can only handle so much…”

She grabbed his nose and he took it as a hopeful indication that she would, indeed, be smarter than her careless father.

To make matters worse, Elena phoned in response to Emma’s punishment.  She had been all for it at first, but now that Emma had graduated and was out on her own, her apprehension was growing.

“Emma is fine, she can take care of herself.  I’m not taking it back, not until she can show she’s changed.  Elena, please, I know what I’m doing.  Don’t you dare go back on what I’ve said, either… you’re just as vulnerable as Emma.  Just focus on Emily and leave Emma to me.”

Since Gordon’s cutting off of Emma, he had warned Claude against aiding her or talking to her.  Claude wasn’t always so great at following Gordon’s directions, however, and spoke to her often.  Unfortunately, she happened to call while Gordon was in the room.

“Hey, Em,” Claude whispered into the phone, trying not to look suspicious.  “You should probably call back later…”

“Claude, is that Emma?”

“Uh, no,” he said, hastily hanging up the phone.  “Wrong number.”

Gordon gave him a look of warning, but said nothing and exited the room.  Claude shuddered, that was close.

“I want to see grandpa,” Grace Saunders said, storming into the house and nearly pushing Emily down on her laurels.

“He’s busy,” Emily called uselessly after her.  Grace, of course, ignored her and went into the basement in search of her nocturnal grandfather.

“You have to let me move in with you,” Grace pleaded, trying to don her best ‘pouty face’.  “The house is just insane with the twins.  You don’t understand, I’m suffocating… and mom’s preening… I can’t take it!”

Gordon sighed, “you’re too young, Grace.  You can’t move here, you have a family and you have your parents.  Things will get better, I promise.  You’re just… well, it isn’t easy being the ‘odd one’ out.”

“No, it won’t get better it’ll just get worse.  My tan is fading and when it’s gone, everything will just get horrible!”

“Grace, listen to me, you’re not moving anywhere.  You’re going to stay with your family and tough it out.  Do you want me to call your father and tell him what you’ve said to me?”

Grace looked sheepish suddenly, her determination faltering, “uh… you won’t, right?  I mean, you can’t, you can’t tell dad… they, he doesn’t even know I’m here!”

“Of course he doesn’t, he’d never allow you to come.  You’re too young, Grace, I’m sorry.  How did you even get here?  Wait, don’t tell me, I don’t want to know.  Come on, I’ll drive you home… it’s getting late.”

Selene was growing like a weed and before they knew it, she was a little girl.  She was talented, especially with the piano, plucking the ivories while her parents danced and laughed behind her.  Emily was at the end of her pregnancy and it showed, she couldn’t wait to get back down to a regular size.

Being the daughter to vampires and the only human in the house meant Selene got a lot of freedom.  She could jump on the couch, each pizza for breakfast, and even run laps around the house and no would yell at her.  Sure, she had Jeeves to look after her needs, but he rarely ever scolded her.  Instead, he joined in her games.

Her favorite game was to dress up in formal wear and dance on Jeeves’ large, metal feet in the upstairs hallway.  She still had to go to school, of course, but the weekends were hers to do with as she pleased.  Most children would feel lonely having so much time to themselves, but Selene relished in it.

She wouldn’t be an only child for long, as Emily soon gave birth to a baby boy they named Nicholai.  He had his mother’s fair complexion but his father’s hair and eyes.  Selene was passive about the new addition, she’d probably care more when he was old enough to do things other than cry, poop, and sleep.

Meanwhile, Gordon himself was feeling incredibly overwhelmed.  In his long history of juggling his criminal activities and his personal ones, he had never been so inundated with both as he was now.  They threatened to collide violently, pieces of one sneaking into the other.  It was a constant juggling act just to keep them from meeting and his personal duties were suffering for it.  He had yet to even make contact with Claude’s estranged children and they would soon be teenagers.

It was just too much, he needed a break.  There was no chance of that.  He’d never leave his empire in the hands of someone else for an hour, much less a day.  He would just have to shoulder the burden and try to balance everything as best as possible until everything calmed down.

He was mixing himself a little edge softener when Valerie walked into the room.  He really needed to get a guard or something for the front door.

“If I learned anything from Shelly Anderson’s party, it’s that drinking doesn’t solve anything.”

“It doesn’t, but it makes things a little easier sometimes,” he abandoned the mixer and looked up.  “What are you doing here?  You’re on vacation.”

She shrugged, “didn’t need one… you, on the other hand, look like you need five.”

“A lifetime would be nice but we can’t all be so lucky,” he said, walking from around the bar.  “What do you want?  I’m not giving you any work, not until you’re back on the level.”

“Well, I guess that means I’m unemployed,” Valerie replied hesitantly, feeling a little uneasy.  “I can’t stop this and I can’t control it, either.”

He shook his head, “Valerie, you’re not the first one to get caught up in the mystery.  It will pass.  It’s not serious.”

“Then why haven’t you had your fun and left it at that?  What do you care about anyone I’m connected to?” She moved closer, eyes never leaving his.  “I have to do this, it’s not going to leave my mind until I do… and I know you feel the same way.”

“Val–”

“You talk too much, Gordon.”

——————————

Note from Mao: Buuhhuuuuh, long update is LONG.  Gordon is involved in so much crap it makes my head spin, I can only imagine how his poor sim feels!  Emily has been put on birth control and as far as I’m concerned, will NEVER be popping out another spawn, ever.  Ever.  No moar babies for Claude, four is enough!

Selene is adorable.  She and Jeeves are best friends and anytime she has a free moment, she’s harassing him.  It’s cute.  She has a fondness for the robot that her mother lacks, LOL!

Elena actually called Gordon and Emma actually called Claude.  I thought it was odd, but I guess it makes sense.  Claude better not be squirreling her money or his butt is in trouble.

Valerie popping up was inopportune but the wants could not be denied.  Valerie has had consistent wants to kiss and do dirty things with Gordon that REFUSED TO LEAVE.  When she visited (ON HER OWN, BTW), I checked and they were still there.  Imagine my surprise when Gordon rolled up similar wants, though I will say one wasn’t specific.  He wanted to kiss Valerie and woohoo in bed.  I took it for face value.

Let’s just hope ‘casual woohoo’ did not result in any unnecessary surprises, hm?  And let us hope this cools the fires a bit.  Marcus is still listed as Valerie’s One True Love, so… yeah.

July 29, 2009

Saunders 2 – Round 26: ‘Is There Something I Should Know’

Filed under: Saunders — Tags: , , , , , — Mao @ 9:57 pm

Gordon Saunders has been a vampire for awhile now, but can he really hold it together as generations pass him by?  Claude and Emily are married, but can their commitment withstand parenthood to little Selene?

Claude had never been good with babies.  They were bald, wrinkly, and they pooped a lot.  That was the extent of his baby knowledge.  Selene seemed different somehow, probably because she was his own.  He spent time with her, something that shocked Gordon to his core.  He really hadn’t anticipated that Claude would be a suitable father.  He still wasn’t sure he was ready to be the father of three children, thus the need to keep the twins’ identities and existence a secret.

Gordon, however, had plenty of practice when it came to raising kids.  He was Selene’s saving grace.  Emily was there for her when she could be and Claude played with her like he would some kind of grown-up toy, but Gordon was the true nurturing force behind her rearing.  She seemed to know this almost instinctively, clutching him the tightest and crying when someone took her away from his arms.

It wasn’t the best solution, but Gordon knew as long as he kept Claude under his careful watch, hopefully he could keep his son out of further trouble.  He was beginning to wish Claude had never discovered vampirism and that Roman hadn’t saw fit to interfere.

Jeeves was a big help during the day, when everyone was asleep.  Unfortunately, one day he malfunctioned and spent the majority of the day running around emitting sparks and gibberish.  Emily was not pleased.  She may not win any mother of the year awards anytime soon, but she loved her daughter and did not trust that chunk of metal for all its worth.  Gordon assured her everything would be fine and spent the next evening fixing Jeeves and getting him back into tip-top working condition.

Emily was still unconvinced.  She thought it would be a much better idea to bring a human into the fold.  They could care for Selene and she wouldn’t have to worry about some mechanical brute hurting her baby.  Claude wasn’t near as apprehensive.  He trusted his father and Jeeves was pretty amusing.  He liked ghosts for some reason, despite never having been to a graveyard.

When Emily suggested that Gordon just bring that girl–what’s her name–Valerie in to do it, Gordon gave her a look that could kill.  It didn’t quite kill her, but it certainly silenced her.  Valerie was not a topic he enjoyed discussing, at all.

Gordon had told Valerie to not make any impromptu visits to the house unless it was absolutely necessary.  Of course, Valerie was a bit of a free-spirit and was prone to doing as she pleased.  She strolled up to the house a little after twelve am.  No matter how many times she saw the house, it never failed to intimidate her.  It definitely looked like a vampire’s lair, especially from the outside with its iron wrought fences and dead trees.

Jeeves let her in and she was greeted by the sound of Gordon working the piano keys.  She hadn’t known he was a pianist, but he certainly had plenty of time to perfect his skills.  He hadn’t been expecting company and so he was not pleased when Jeeves let him know he had a visitor.

Valerie was a bit surprised when he wasn’t dressed, “I didn’t mean to just barge in but–”

“You’d better have a good reason,” Gordon said tersely, moving from the piano bench.  “However, it will have to wait.  Let me get dressed.”

He disappeared down into the basement for a few moments before emerging, fully dressed.  Valerie was thankful for this.  She wasn’t sure if she could deal with the half-naked vampire.  She had to keep reminding herself of Megan and Marcus.

There was also the fact that Gordon still wore his wedding ring.  Lauren had died some time ago and yet there it was, on his finger, an ever-present reminder of his age and truly, how little she knew of what he was.  He stared her down, waiting for an explanation.  It took her a moment to gather her thoughts.

“Megan brought home Nadia… and then Nadia introduced her to Dominic.  Both children have been to my house several times now,” Valerie began, confident.  “I figured that if you wanted to see them directly, or maybe observe them, you could come over when they are there.  You wouldn’t have to tell them who you are.”

Gordon looked thoughtful for a moment, “I can’t say that warrants a visit, but I will admit, I’m impressed.  I trust Megan has no idea what she’s done?”

“No, it was an accident that she happened to meet Nadia and bring her home.  Everything went from there.  I’m just being the supportive mother.”

“I’ll let you know, about coming over.  Until then, no more surprise visits.”

Selene seemed to be growing faster than the rest of her family could handle.  Emily found herself becoming more and more attached to the tiny life she had spawned.  She’d been a vampire for a long time and never once had she thought to become a mother.  Now she couldn’t imagine being anything else.  Claude, perhaps, was not the ideal father figure, but she loved him for all his eccentricities.  And even if she didn’t always agree with Gordon’s methods, Selene couldn’t have possibly had a better grandfather.

Emily was happy that she’d done what she done, even if she felt guilty about it.  Were it not for Roman’s little plan, she’d never have ended up here, watching her daughter sleeping peacefully, protected and safe.

Unfortunately, not all of Gordon’s grandchildren were little angels.  Emma Davis wasn’t Gordon’s actual granddaughter, in fact, they shared absolutely no blood relation, but he had adopted her mother and that made him grandpa enough for the both of them.  It seemed Emma had been a little too spoiled in her youth, for she was acting recklessly and without caution now.  Gordon was more than well aware of what she’d been doing at college.

“I would really prefer it if you left Gregory Davis alone, Emma,” Gordon warned her.  Not only was Gregory Roman’s son, but he was engaged to Lydia Anderson.  Gordon didn’t need anymore conflict with either branch of the family.  “It’s for the best.”

Of course, Emma would hear none of his reasoning.  What did he know about love, anyway?

As if Emma’s behavior wasn’t enough to cause him worry, there was another surprise waiting around the corner.  Emily was pregnant again.  Claude was suitably shocked.  One child was more than enough for him.

“I thought we had been careful,” Claude said after some moments of shocked silence.  “How did this happen?”

Emily was a little taken back by his lack of enthusiasm, “preventative measures are never one-hundred-precent, Claude.  It just happened.”

He sighed, shoulders slumped, “don’t you think one is enough?”

“We’ll figure something out afterward,” Emily said, trying not to be upset at her husband’s reaction.  “But there’s nothing we can do about this one.  We’re having a second, whether you’re ready for it or not.”

Claude watched as Selena clumsily walked past them, oblivious to the tension hovering between her parents.  He sighed and simply said, “you’re right, but dad is not going to be happy.  At all.”

—————————————–

Note from Mao: Forget about Gordon being happy, MAO IS NOT HAPPY.  Why must every descendant of Henry Saunders insist on having A MILLION KIDS?  Do I have to whip out the family tree to illustrate this for you?  I probably can’t because it’s so huge.  Arhghghg, Emily is going on birth control after this.

Also, on a super-disturbing note, Emma?  Three bolts.  Gordon has THREE BOLTS for his adopted granddaughter.  HOMG.  And here I thought Valerie was a problem.  GAH!  This is a Woody Allen situation here, totally messed up.

This was also my first servo malfunction.  Very strange.

March 5, 2009

Saunders 2 – Round 24: ‘Carpe Diem, Baby, Pt. 5′

Filed under: Saunders — Tags: , , , , , — Mao @ 1:55 pm

Gordon Saunders is realizing his immortality as the people he knew in his youth slowly give in to a peaceful death.  Lauren is up next.  Claude is bumbling through being a vampire while Emily is quite pleased with the immunity afforded to her by Gordon.

Claude isn’t quite sure what came over him, but he suddenly had the urge to propose to Emily.  She hadn’t dropped hints or anything, but cutting it off with Kit had been pretty serious business, so why stop there?  He felt bad about what happened with Kit, but hopefully she’d realize that it would never be that way between them.  He loved Emily, which he proved by going against his nature and promising to eventually make her his wife.

Lauren wasn’t quite sure how she felt about the nuptials, but she had little say.  Gordon had bigger news–they were moving.  They had outgrown this place and would be moving to a house more… fitting of their situation.  Lauren was really worried now.  It was bad enough being surrounded by vampires, but now it seemed she’d be stuck in a vampire lair, too!  Gordon promised her he had no such intentions.

The new house was quite luxurious, with accommodations to please everyone.  There was a grand piano for those who were musically inclined and a larger-than-life LCD television for the more discerning viewer.  Claude, of course, nearly watched himself into a stasis, marveling at the huge television, while Emily recaptured her youth on the piano.

Gordon hadn’t missed the news about Tracey’s death.  He saw her obituary in the paper.  It didn’t move him, though he knew Michael would be upset.  Not nearly as upset as most children, seeing as Tracey hadn’t raised him–Lauren did.  It was partially Gordon’s fault, but leaving him with Tracey hadn’t been an option.  Gordon did what he had to in order to protect his family.  Tracey was erratic and untrustworthy.  Who knew how Michael might have turned out if she’d gotten her claws in him too far.

Emily, meanwhile, was trying to integrate herself into the family.  She made friends with Lauren and made her an offer.  Lauren wholeheartedly refused, giving her a look of complete disapproval.

“Stop that,” she hissed, batting Emily away forcefully, “what do you think you’re doing?  You think Gordon and I haven’t already had this talk?  I know what death is like better than anyone.  I got a second chance.  That’s enough for me.  Besides, who wants to be an old and wrinkly vampire?!”

Emily sighed, “I can’t understand why you would want to die.”

“Of course you can’t,” Lauren softened, suddenly sympathetic, “few ever will… but I’m ready.  I won’t fight it.”

Emma came over frequently to see Gordon and make use of the grand piano.  Lauren tried to talk some sense into her, involving the new baby and her responsibilities as an older sister, but her advice fell on deaf ears.  Lauren tried to remember if she had ever been so young and stupid… of course she had.  Everyone had.  She sighed.  What would be would be.

Michael was there when Lauren died.  He had come home from work with her.  They were going to discuss her retirement and his taking of her position.  He didn’t want it, but she insisted with a kind smile and motherly hug.  He had two mothers die on him now, one he scarcely knew and now the one who had raised him.  It seemed wrong, to be forced into grieving twice… but it was the price.  His father would never die and so he would experience this.

———————–

Note from Mao: Emily kept trying to vamp Lauren and Lauren refused her everytime!  They are friends, but Lauren’s got high skills.  Who knows.  She really just wanted to die in peace.  Poor Michael.  LOL he’s had two aspiration failures now…

February 2, 2009

Saunders 2 – Round 23: ‘Carpe Diem, Baby, Pt. 4′

Filed under: Saunders — Tags: , , , , , — Mao @ 10:07 am

Lauren is finding herself neck-deep in vampires.  Gordon, the resident criminal mastermind and self-proclaimed underworld mayor of all that he surveys, isn’t too happy about Roman’s meddling with his son.  Claude, meanwhile, is quite enjoying his life as a creature of the night.

Claude was shocked when he managed to get the door to his father’s ever-exclusive study open.  He must have left it unlatched when he left for work.  Even more surprising was the familiar, yet peaked face of Emily.  She was seated on the high back chair looking wholly defeated and hopeless.  Their eyes met slowly and recognition washed over both their faces like an electric pulse.

“Emily?”

“Claude?”

“What are you doing down here?” Claude asked, helping her out of the chair.  Suddenly, he had a thought, “my father found you, didn’t he?”

“I’m sorry, Claude.  I didn’t know what I was getting into… but even so, I mean, despite it all, I’m glad I did.” She smiled, taking his hand.  “Otherwise, I’d still be out there… alone.  Being a vampire isn’t always easy, it’s a very solitary, lonely existence.  I can’t even begin to count how many years I’ve endured.  My parents were vampires and so, I was inducted quite early.”

“It’s all right, I’ll make this okay.  Dad will understand.  I’m not mad, I’m actually kinda happy with this–I mean, being a vampire and all.  And I’m really glad he found you.”

Making it ‘okay’ wasn’t easy.  Emily joined the ranks in the Saunders home, but was forced to go through the gauntlet of dealing with Gordon and explaining herself to Lauren.  Lauren wasn’t immediately accepting of yet another vampire in her home, the one who had changed her baby boy, but what could she do?  Emily made Claude happy, and she seemed genuine.  At least, Gordon assured her she was… and well, if she wasn’t…

For now, Lauren would tolerate it.

Claude, being the type of guy he is, wasn’t quite sure how he’d adjust to the lifestyle of having a ‘serious’ significant other.  They weren’t married or anything, but Emily was really fond of him and he of her.  Still, after awhile, he didn’t even think about it.  Emily was hot, she was technically an older woman, and her accent was hot.  She was all around hot, a straight ten, what more could he ask for?  The vampire thing was a catch with the ladies, but with Emily, it was a shared, mutual experience.  Emily’s reaction everytime they crawled out of their coffins at dusk was evidence of her agreement on the matter.

Plus, they had a lot of fun doing cliched, vampire things like making out (amongst other things) in a graveyard.  They enjoyed lurking in dark clubs and luring away innocent, admittedly stupid, club-goers.  The town was their oyster and while Gordon pleaded with them to be discreet, they also managed to enjoy themselves quite a bit.  Emily wasn’t new to this, she knew how to keep a low profile, but she wasn’t above making the best of the time she had with Claude, either.

When Gordon wasn’t corralling his vampire son and his much older girlfriend or trying to placate his very anxious wife, he was cleaning up other messes and securing friendships that would aid him in the future.  He had been immensely saddened to hear of Lilith Yu’s death, not simply because they had an agreement, but she had become a friend, and she was Tsung’s wife.  Her apprentice and protege, Isolde Anderson, was quick to come to him.  Apparently Lilith had let some thing slip and surprisingly, Isolde was happy to help him with Claude’s problem.  She even brought a potion.

Gordon was hesitant to deal with another Anderson, especially one so closely tied to Roman, but what choice did he have?  For now, Roman was safe, because as much as Gordon hated to admit it, he needed Isolde and her skills.  Isolde had single-handedly saved her uncle’s butt without even knowing it.

Still, Gordon wasn’t sure what he’d do about Claude.  Claude seemed adamant to continue this little play of being a vampire, but Gordon knew better.  The fancy would wear off and his fickle son would grow bored with the life he chose.  What would become of him then, and what of Emily?  Gordon idly stuffed the potion Isolde had given him into the locked drawer.  He would need it, eventually, but not now.

—————–

Note from Mao: Emily is quite pretty, I’m surprised.  She and Claude are ridiculous… but hilarious, too.  Poor Gordon, his hands are tied!  And now you know why Roman hasn’t gotten any payback… Isolde to the unknowing rescue!  Lilith created peace by dying.  She wouldn’t be pleased, we all know much she loved a little chaos!

On another note, Boreal Springs is a year old.  Wow.

January 12, 2009

Saunders 2 – Round 22: ‘Carpe Diem, Baby, Pt. 3′

Filed under: Saunders — Tags: , , , , , — Mao @ 9:22 pm

Gordon Saunders is comfortable in his position of power over Boreal Springs and Aperture, unfortunately, it often puts his family at risk.  Lauren is furious when Claude returns home looking much like his father–pale and with fangs.

“I thought you said nothing happened at University, Claude,” Gordon began, his voice stern.

Claude tried to play it off, “nothing really did.”

“Claude, you’re a vampire.  You call that nothing?” Gordon snapped, unable to keep his composure.

“Well, I mean, yeah… but it’s not so bad.  I mean, I’ve got a handle on it.  I’ll live.”

Gordon sighed and sat down next to Claude, trying to find the proper words.  It was difficult.  He couldn’t exactly say ‘no, you’re not allowed to be a vampire’, he was one.  If it was okay for him, why not Claude?  What a mess this was.  Worst of all, Gordon knew this wasn’t an accident.  Someone had done this on purpose.

“Who did this to you, Claude?  Was it another vampire?”

Claude hesitated.  Should he say it was Emily?  She had disappeared shortly after.  He paused a moment before finally saying, “yeah, another vampire.  She was… one of my–”

“I see,” Gordon said, standing up.  “What was her name?  If you don’t tell me, I’ll find out anyway.  Make this simpler, Claude.”

“Emily.”

“You’d better fix this, Gordon!” Lauren raged later that night after seeing her son.  “My baby is a vampire! He has fangs, Gordon!  He’s not a criminal, and he certainly has no business in any of this past the misfortune of being related to you! You’d better fix this!”

“I will, Lauren,” Gordon said between her seemingly endless stream of words, “I’ll fix it.”

“When, Gordon?  NOW! My baby is not being some weird night creature!  This is all your fault–all of it.  You and your criminals and revenge, grudges, whatever.  I don’t even care what it takes, just fix this!

Gordon grumbled, “you think I’m not aware of that little fact?  I’ll fix it, I will, I promise.”

Lauren spent the next several hours going between fawning over Claude–who had always been a bit of a momma’s boy–and yelling at Gordon.  Finally, she exhausted herself enough for Gordon to put his plan into action.  He dialed the number into the phone and was met with a sleepy voice.

‘Gordon?  Do you know what time it is?!’

“Sorry, Lilith, this is important.  Claude’s a vampire.”

‘Er… bad, right?  This is a bad thing?’

“Yes, it’s bad!  Now, listen.  I need you to use your… weird contacts and get me something to help him.”

‘My ‘weird’ contacts?  Have you finally lost your mind, Gordon?  I can’t just wiggle my fingers and POOF, instant vamp b’ gone.’ She inhaled deeply and finally said, ‘I’ll see what I can do, okay?  But no promises.’

Meanwhile, Claude was adjusting to life as a vampire pretty well, now that he had his father’s guidance.  He was surprised one evening by Kit stopping by.  He hadn’t seen her since they both graduated from University.  She had moved into the same apartment building as Sade and Michael.  She also chopped off her hair.  Claude barely recognized her–she looked good, happy.

“I see you’re still a vampire,” she joked.  “How’s that working out for you?”

“It’s not too bad, but my mother doesn’t care for it.”

“I just, I mean, I wanted to see how you were doing.  Since the whole, well, vampire thing.”

Claude invited her in and she was grateful.  It was pretty cold out.  Once they were in, though, Claude started with his charm.  She instantly pushed him away, giving him a terrible scowl.  Claude, even being a vampire, was a little frightened.

“Agh!  I’m not here for that Claude.  I just wanted to see how you were doing.  You’re such a jerk.”

“What?  I’m sorry, Kit.  But, well, it’s always been–”

“Well, it’s not now.  So, stop it,” the words didn’t reach her eyes.  She stomped out.

Gordon had Emily in his clutches.  He had pulled her off the street effortlessly, thanks to his contacts.  She was hiding from someone, flushed out from her clan and all alone in the big, bad world.  She was a little shocked when she awoke in Gordon’s basement.

“You, you’re the one who turned my son.  Why?” Gordon wasted no time mincing words.

“Your son?”

“Claude.  Don’t play stupid with me.  Tell me why, why did you turn him?  And don’t lie–I know he didn’t ‘want it’.  You did it on your own.”

“I-I… can’t.  I’ll be killed!”  She looked terrified suddenly, as if the walls were enemies, too.  “I can’t say anything.  I can’t.”

“Someone hired you to track down my son, didn’t they?  You’ve been watching him awhile.  You got into a relationship with him and you used it to get close enough to turn him.  Why?  Who put you up to it?”

“I can’t!” She shrieked.

“You can’t, because someone will kill you?  I’ll throw you out into the sunlight if you don’t tell me right now!

Emily’s eyes widened considerably.  She looked terrified.  After a moment, she finally said, “if I tell you, will you still kill me?  Your son will be upset… he cares about me.”

“Claude cares about a lot of women, one less won’t hurt him,” Gordon replied coldly.  “Now tell me.”

“Okay, okay… it was Roman Anderson.  He’s the one you want, not me.  I feel bad, I do.  I liked–I like Claude.  A lot.  I felt horrible afterwards, but Roman, he was going to… I mean, I couldn’t say no.  I’m sorry.  I’m sorry!

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Note from Mao: Bad Roman, very bad Roman!  And now the truth comes out.  ;b  Back when Countess Emily first ran into Claude when he was a teen, it was too convenient not to run with.  It was after Gordon and Roman’s deal had gone sour.  What better revenge than to mess with the heir?  Hehe.

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