Chapter Five

Chapter Five

A Chapter by Gabsikle

Roxy’s birthday was in early December. She was going to be eighteen, and was planning a small get together. Most people would find what she had planned lame, but she just wanted all her friends together. At lunch, Xana and Charlie helped with the guest list.

            “Obviously you two are invited,” Roxy said while doodling on the list. “Along with your parents, Xana. You want your dad to come, Charlie?”

            Charlie considered. “I guess. He has said he wants to meet your parents. I think it’ll make him feel more comfortable to get to know them.”

            “So who else?” Roxy wanted to know.

            Xana grinned. “You could invite Larry.”

            Roxy’s cheeks went pink. “It’s not like he’d show up.”

            “He totally would,” Charlie said. “Lucy told me he creeps on all your social media accounts. And he sometimes mopes because you don’t talk to him.”

            “But a lot of Were-creatures live in our section of the neighborhood. Mostly Pack members.”

            Xana ate an apple slice. “It’s not gonna be the full moon. And you live farther away from the others.”

            “Just invite him,” Charlie said. “He doesn’t have many friends. Or, you know, any.”

            “We’re his friends,” Xana said. “Kinda. It’s hard for us since we have secrets to keep, and have been urged to be careful our whole lives. And he’s been super reserved since his dad killed himself. We were young when that happened, and not a lot of people understood. Then as we got older, kids would use that to pick on him.” Xana frowned. “Invite him, Roxy. We should probably do more to reach out.”

            “And you can lay the groundwork for love,” Charlie added. “Invite Lucy and Eden too. They’re cool, and don’t have any other friends.”

            Roxy sighed. “Okay.” She wrote the names down. “Anyone else?”

            “Milo and Jeremy?” Xana suggested.

            Roxy nodded. “You and I have known Milo since we were little.”

            “Ooh! Max!” Xana said, wiggling her feet under the table. “We haven’t seen him in a while.”

            “Who’s Max?” Charlie wanted to know.

            “He’s part of my dad’s Clan,” Xana told her. “He’s my dad’s second in command, and will take over when my dad dies. He’s like a big brother. He owns a night club too.”

            Charlie suddenly felt anxiety. She hadn’t been alone with a Vampire since leaving Maine. What if the guy hit on her? She didn’t know what she would do if anyone showed some kind of sexual interest in her. Hell, feeling sexual desire herself freaked her out. It just reminded her of all those times…

            Roxy tapped her pen on the table. Charlie hadn’t spoken in a bit, and looked spaced out and scared. “Charlie?” She got Charlie’s attention. “Max is a good guy. He’d never treat you or anyone like Marco did.”

            “Max doesn’t even really have sex anyway,” Xana said, hoping it would be a comfort.

            “Why not?” Charlie had a hard time believing that. Every Vampire she met wanted sex.

            “He isn’t attracted to people sexually.” Xana remembered asking him a few years before why all his relationships ended with his significant others annoyed with him.

            “That’s a thing?”

            Xana nodded. “He identifies as asexual.”

            “But he is a super flirt,” Roxy added. “We can tell him not to do that around you if it’ll make you feel uncomfortable.”

            “We’ll have to see,” Charlie said as the bell rang. “Xana, you’ll take me to see Dr. Michaels after school?”

            Xana smiled at her. “Of course.”

 

 

            Charlie had never been to a therapist before. She wasn’t sure what to do. She just looked around the room, and avoided eye contact with Dr. Michaels.

            “You don’t have to be worried,” Dr. Michaels said. “We don’t have to talk about anything you’re not ready to talk about.”

            “I don’t know what I’m ready to talk about,” Charlie admitted.

            “How about how you’ve been adjusting since the move?”

            “When it’s just me and my dad at home it’s fine. He always asks about my day and how I’m doing. He tells me about his day. It’s comfortable.” Charlie paused. “When my mom and sister are home, though, you can just feel the tension. I know they hate me.”

            “What makes you think they hate you?”

            “Casey had so many friends, and had been excited about college. She had to abandon all that because of me. My mom loved our big house and nice things. Now we have a tiny house, and barely any fancy stuff.”

            “Maybe they’re just having trouble getting used to all this. Being thrown into the Supernatural world can be a shock.”

            “I’m the one who put them in this situation,” Charlie said. “If I hadn’t let Marco get to me…”

            “People like Marco know how to charm people. You know he’s done to others what he did to you.”

Charlie nodded. Xana had grilled her dad, and had gotten a bigger picture of Marco and passed it on to Charlie. She had thought she was Marco’s one and only.

              “I was dumb enough to fall for it.”

            “You’re not dumb. You’re just a girl. He knew what to say and do to make you feel special.”

            “And he knew how to make me feel horrible.”

            “When did he first make you feel horrible?”

            Charlie didn’t know exactly when that started. Instead she began to tell Dr. Michaels the whole story.  

 

 

            Xana spent her time on her phone while she waited for Charlie in Dr. Michaels’ waiting room. She had a few e-mails from Tumblr that were from people who followed her blog. Most complimented her movie and TV reviews or gif/photo sets. One, though, was from the creepy person.

            The message talked about how good she looked in her uniform. The guy also said what he’d do to her sexually"whether she liked it or not. He went into much more detail about what would happen if she didn’t consent. It was like the person wanted to force himself on her. There were references to the inside of her car"there was a whole scenario about what would go down in her backseat.

            Xana was really concerned that it might be a legitimate stalking case. She watched shows about stalking. She decided to keep a record of all the instances, along with screenshots of the messages. That way if something happened to her, there would be evidence. Maybe clues. If something happened in real life, maybe the cops would take her seriously.

            Charlie came out of Dr. Michaels office looking a little worn out.

            Xana stood up. “Ready to go?”

            Charlie nodded.

            The car ride to Charlie’s house was silent. Xana figured Charlie would talk if and only when she wanted to. She finally spoke when they pulled in front of her house. “Can I ask you something?”

            “Of course.” Xana noticed that Charlie looked nervous.

            “When I first told you what Marco made me do, what did you honestly think about that?”

            “I thought that he abused you,” Xana told her. “And that he’s a creep who picks up underage girls.”

            “But,” Charlie thought about her session with Dr. Michaels, and the sort of revelation she had from all the doctor’s questions. “Do you think I’ve been… raped?”

            Xana chose honesty. “Well. Yeah.”

            Tears slid down Charlie’s cheeks. “I had never thought of it that way before. I guess I wouldn’t let myself accept it, but,” she took a gasping breath, “it explains so much. The nightmares. I didn’t like being touched, and how long I would shower after. Like, I had to clean off any trace of those people. How could I have let this happen to me?”

            “Charlie, it’s not your fault.”

            Charlie scoffed. “Sure it isn’t. I was dumb enough to let Marco make me think he wasn’t doing anything wrong.”

            Xana grabbed Charlie’s hand. “Marco is a manipulative prick. God, how long has he had to practice doing that to girls? He knows how to mess with people’s minds.”

            “But I should’ve recognized what was happening.”

            Xana gave Charlie’s hand a squeeze. “You were fourteen. You didn’t have enough life experience to know what was happening.”

            “I’m an idiot.”

            “No! Don’t you dare let yourself think that. You are not at fault in any way.”

            “But"“

            “Hey!” Xana snapped. “You haven’t done anything wrong. You need to remember that.”

            Xana let go of Charlie’s hand and leaned back in her seat. “Are you seeing Dr. Michaels again?”

            Charlie sniffled and nodded. “Same time next week. Will you take me again?”

            “Of course.”

 

 

            Roxy rushed around her house like a bullet to get things ready for her birthday party.

            “You know, our housekeeper and cook took care of the major things,” her dad told her.

            Roxy could hardly tell her father her Mate was coming over. She wouldn’t declare him until Larry loved her back. The house had to be perfect to impress Larry.

            Roxy was glad everyone else was showing up an hour before Larry, Lucy, and Eden. They all needed to be informed to avoid talking about Supernatural problems. She was also super grateful that the sun set earlier in winter. That way, all Vampire guests could make it on time.

            Xana and her parents were the first to arrive as they usually did for parties or events.

            “The house looks wonderful,” Mrs. Chambers said as she walked in. She held up a plate. “I made monkey bread.”

            Roxy’s dad took the plate. “Thank you, Maggie. I’ll put this in the kitchen. You want a drink?”

            Once the adults were gone, Roxy asked Xana how she looked. Her dad may have had advanced hearing as a Were, but he was distracted by entertaining guests, and would hopefully ignore her.

            Xana watched Roxy turn. She had on a royal blue over sized sweater that had black buttons going down the back. She was wearing faux leather leggings, and black boots. She also had a blue bow in her hair.

            “You look great,” Xana told her. “Larry’s heart will leap.”

            “I just hope no one gives anything away about our otherness.”

            “You act like all these people don’t have practice hiding it,” Xana said. She handed Roxy a box. “Your birthday gift.”

            Roxy smiled and opened it. “Thanks!” She put on the sapphire ring. The two had a tradition of getting each other jewelry for their birthdays.

            “The little diamonds are fake.”

            Roxy chuckled. “I figured.”

            The doorbell rang, and the two went to answer it. Roxy opened the door and Charlie stepped in with her dad. Mr. Palmer looked very nervous.

            “Don’t worry,” Xana said to him. “No one here is gonna eat you.”

            Mr. Palmer forced out a laugh. “I’m just not used to being surrounded by Supernatural creatures.”

            Xana scrunched up her nose. “I mean, we’re people.”

            Mr. Palmer let out a breath. “Sorry. I’m still getting used to all this.”

            “It’s fine,” Roxy said. “You haven’t had the best experience after all.”

            Xana’s dad floated into the room. “Not all Vampires are like Marco. There are plenty who follow the rules Supernatural people set up.” He held out a hand. “I’m Xavier Chambers.”

            Mr. Palmer shook Xavier’s hand. “I’m Bob. You own the Chambers Inns, right?’

            Xavier nodded. “I founded them and kept them running for this long.”

            Mr. Palmer looked a little confused. “But it’s been passed down from fathers to sons.”

            Xavier grinned at him. “We’ve learned how to hide what we are.”

            “But you look different in all the pictures. And you’re at different ages.”

            “I’ve learned how to make myself look older or younger with makeup. I can also slightly alter my facial features with makeup too. And there have been some extreme measures.”

            “What kind of extreme measures?” Bob wanted to know.

            Xana spoke, “Vampires will break bones in their faces and hold them in the wrong place until it heals to change their appearance. There are some doctors who specialize in it.”

            Charlie avoided speaking while the conversation was happening. She had gotten used to not talking around new Vampires when she was involved with Marco. He had always told her it was important to appear non-threatening and compliant. She hadn’t been allowed to show any discomfort or annoyance with new Vampires. And she always had to be agreeable. It was a hard habit to break.

            Xavier seemed to sense Charlie’s anxiety. “You don’t have to be afraid of me, Charlie. But I will keep my distance if it’ll make you feel better.”

            Charlie made herself make eye contact. “I’m, uh, not sure how I feel.”

            “That’s fine,” Xavier said. “Bob, why don’t you join Roxy’s dad, my wife, and I in the kitchen?”

            “Sorry about that,” Charlie said to her friends once the dads left.

            “It’s okay,” Xana told her. “It would’ve been surprising if you were completely comfortable with a Vampire after what you’ve been through.” She gave Charlie’s shoulder a reassuring pat. “My dad will keep his distance.”

            “He shouldn’t have to,” Charlie said.

            “It’s not something you get over quickly,” Xana told her.

            “Let’s just go hang out in the living room,” Roxy said. “Let’s not dwell on problems, and just have fun.”

            As they sat in the living room talking, Milo and Jeremy arrived. Milo joined the adults in the kitchen, and Jeremy sat with the girls.

            Charlie was enjoying listening to Xana and Jeremy argue about a TV when she heard an Irish accent. “Who’s that?”

            Xana hopped off the couch. “Max!” She ran off to the kitchen, followed by Roxy.

            “Another Vampire,” Jeremy told Charlie. “Xavier’s second in command. From what Milo’s told me, he’s a good guy.”

            “I guess I shouldn’t completely avoid him,” Charlie said as she stood, trying not to look scared.

            Jeremy stood as well. “You can stay close to me if it’ll make you feel better.”

            Charlie nodded, and they went into the kitchen.

            A man with copper colored hair was spinning Xana around. He put her down and then kissed Roxy’s hands. “You’re looking lovely, birthday girl. And now you’re legal. Your dad is going to have to kick a lot of a*s.”

            Roxy smiled. “I can kick their asses myself thank you.”

            Max put his hands over his heart. “Forgive me. Next under twenty-one night at Midnight free beverages for you.”

            “My birthday falls on under twenty-one night, right?” Xana asked Max.

            Max patted Xana’s head. “Yes. Just for you.” His brown eyes fell on Jeremy and Charlie. “You two must be Milo’s apprentice, and my girls’ new friend.”

            “Jeremy and Charlie,” Xana introduced.

            Roxy clapped her hands together. “Now that all the Supernatural people are here, I have to warn you about the regular people that’ll be at this little shindig. So be cautious.”

            “Then I should mention something before they arrive,” Max said. He turned to Xavier. “I hear that James Master, as he’s going by now, will be coming to Wilmington soon.”

            “Why?” Maggie asked.

            Max shrugged. “I haven’t been able to learn his business.”

            Xana saw the worry on her mom’s face. “Who’s James Master?”

            “He and I were Turned by the same Vampire,” Xavier told his daughter. “James worshipped her, as he wanted to become a Vampire. I was Turned against my will, and began to resent her after a while. She did a lot of horrible things, so I eventually killed her. James wasn’t very pleased with that.”

            “So he wants you dead?” Xana asked.

            Charlie was surprised that it sounded like a regular question. She had only just been introduced to fearing for her family’s lives. It seemed like Xana was used to that fear. Charlie wondered what kind of effect it had on Xana’s life. Charlie couldn’t imagine being raised with that fear.

            “He tried to seduce your mom when she was pregnant with you,” Xavier said. “He wanted to raise you as his own and Turn your mom. All part of his plan to get back at me. I never let myself love before Maggie. Luckily, your mom wouldn’t have any of it.”

            Xana watched her parents. “So what’s the danger?”

            “He may try to do something to you,” Max informed Xana.

            Milo spoke up, “James is also thought to be associated with a Vampire we have a Kill Order for. He’s done things that you wouldn’t want done to you.”

            Xana’s mind went to the messages she’d been getting on the Internet. Could there be a connection?

            The doorbell rang.

            Roxy gasped. “They’re here. Everyone remain cool.” She ran off.

            “Why is she so nervous?” Mr. Jacobs asked Xana.

            Xana twirled her hair and grinned. “No reason.”

            Arthur believed he’d soon learn why. He watched his daughter interact with the boy Larry. She was shy with him, which was unnatural for Roxy, and she looked at him like he was the sun. His little girl had found her Mate. He wondered why Roxy hadn’t told him.

Maggie stepped up next to him. “It’s good to see our girls making friends.” She smiled at Xana, Roxy, Charlie, Larry, Lucy, Eden, and Jeremy playing a board game. “They have each other, but sometimes they seem so lonely.”

“Probably our fault,” Arthur said. “We made them keep a low profile starting at pre-school. I was hoping Roxy would befriend Pack members, but they’re all too young or old.”

“Xana only ever had Roxy.”

Arthur sighed. “I think Roxy has found her Mate.”

Maggie raised her eyebrows. “Larry?”

“How’d you know?”

“She watches him a lot, and seems afraid to touch him. She laughs louder at the things he says. It’s obvious.”

“She’s gone to school with him for a long time. Why hasn’t she told me?”

Maggie chuckled and shook her head. “She’s a teenage girl. She’s not going to talk to her dad about her love life. Hell, Xana rarely tells me about her personal life. I know something’s been wrong lately, but whenever I ask, she says she’s fine. And if I investigate further, it may be invading her privacy, which I hated when my parents did it.”

“Parenthood is hard.”

“I hear it never gets easier.” She watched the young ones silently for a moment. “Milo told Xavier and me about the Vampire James is associated with. Roger. The things he’s done. If any of that happens to Xana… God.” Her voice wavered at the end.

“She has plenty of people to protect her.”

“What can we do if she won’t tell anyone something’s wrong?”  



© 2015 Gabsikle


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Added on July 29, 2015
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Author

Gabsikle
Gabsikle

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About
Just a sad person trying to get her writing out there to see whether or not it's horrible. Hoping to get some advice and whatnot too, so I can make my writing better. more..

Writing
Chapter One Chapter One

A Chapter by Gabsikle


Chapter Two Chapter Two

A Chapter by Gabsikle


Chapter Three Chapter Three

A Chapter by Gabsikle