The Immortal Who Loved Me(Argeneau, book 21)(51) by Lynsay Sands
“Oh.” She smiled weakly and glanced around. “No, this is fine. It certainly has a great view,” she said, then frowned and added, “As long as we aren’t putting Drina and Harper out. I wouldn’t want to inconvenience them.”
“You aren’t,” Harper announced, returning to the room with a tray of sugar, cream, sweetener, and spoons. “Actually, it’s nice to get some use out of this place. We spend so much time in Port Henry, this apartment is really a waste. Thank God I own it and don’t pay rent,” he added dryly. Harper smiled at her reassuringly as he set his tray on the coffee table. “There are several guest rooms, or the two of you can share one. It’s up to you.”
“Thank goodness my room is soundproofed,” Stephanie said now, carrying out a second tray, this one bearing a pan of brownies and several plates. “At least I won’t have to listen to you four going at it tonight. I don’t know how the others sleep with all that racket.”
“So says she who snores like a lumberjack,” Harper teased.
“I do not!” Stephanie gasped with dismay, and then asked worriedly, “Do I?”
“No, honey,” Drina assured her with a reproving look at Harper as she entered the room with a tray of coffee cups. “Harper’s just teasing you.”
“Hmmm.” Stephanie scowled at him as Drina set down the brownies and plates, then she slumped on the couch next to Sherry and eyed the notepad. “Would it be easier for you to make your list at the dining room table?”
“Oh!” Drina paused, her own tray still in her hand. Clucking her tongue, she turned in that direction. “I should have thought of that. We can have coffee and brownies at the table so you can write. The coffee’s on, by the way, it won’t be a minute.”
“Oh, you don’t have to . . .” Sherry let her voice trail away. Drina was already halfway to the table, and Harper and Stephanie were grabbing up the trays to follow. Shrugging, she stood and followed too, leaning into Basil when he slipped his arm around her as he joined her. It really would be easier to work at the table anyway.
Sherry and Basil settled there as Stephanie cut and distributed plates of brownies and Harper passed out the coffee cups. Drina busied herself giving everyone spoons and forks and placing the coffee fixings in the center of the table. She then collected the trays and returned to the kitchen to check on the coffee.
Sherry had opened her notepad and had the pen poised at the first line but hadn’t written anything when Basil suggested, “Maybe start from your earliest memories. Write everyone you can remember when you were a child, put down how long they were in your life, and then continue on until today.”
“Right,” she said, peered at the page, and then wrote down her mother’s name followed by the date she died.
“If she has to list everyone from school friends to teachers, this is going to take a while, huh?” Stephanie commented, slipping a generous slice of brownie onto a plate.
“Why do you think Lucian gave her till morning?” Harper asked dryly.
“I thought you guys slept during the day,” Sherry murmured as she followed her mother’s name with her father’s.
“Some do, some don’t,” Basil murmured, rubbing her shoulders as she wrote her grandparents’ names down. “We all avoid actually going out in daylight, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be up and about. Lucian will probably take a nap when he gets home, so he’s fresh in the morning.”
Sherry merely nodded and continued with her list. The faster she finished, the faster they could go to bed and the more sleep they’d get before Lucian was back to harass them.
“Like you two will do any sleeping,” Stephanie said dryly.
“Steph!” Harper growled.
“What?” the girl asked, and shrugged. “You know it’s true. You two won’t get much sleep either, and Basil and Sherry are newer at this life mate thing than you guys. I doubt they’ll sleep at all other than the brief bouts of unconsciousness.” She carried a plate with a slice of brownie around and set it in front of Basil, then patted Sherry’s arm and suggested, “You should really let Basil turn you. The lack of sleep won’t affect you as much that way. All you have to do is suck up some more blood. Besides, with Leo prowling around out there . . .” She hesitated and then finished sadly, “Well, you just don’t want him to be the one to turn you.”
Sherry raised her gaze from the notepad and glanced around when sudden silence fell over the room. Drina stood in the kitchen doorway, a large, full coffeepot in hand and a stricken look on her face. Harper stood at the head of the table peering down at his feet, his expression a combination of frustration and sadness, and Basil was eyeing Stephanie with pity. As for Stephanie herself, the teenager had returned to her place in front of the pan of brownies, but now simply stared down at the squares, her shoulders slumped.
“Didn’t someone promise me brownies?” Sherry asked with forced cheer. “Here I am slaving away at my list and yet I’m the only one without a brownie.”
“Right.” Stephanie stiffened her shoulders and returned to cutting, muttering, “We can’t have that.”
Sherry swallowed back a sigh and peered at her notepad again, but her vision was a bit blurry, her eyes glazed with tears.
Sherry finished brushing her teeth¸ set her toothbrush on the counter next to Basil’s and then turned to the door, only to pause. It was late, after 2 A.M.¸ and Lucian was supposed to come in the morning, so they weren’t likely to get much sleep, and still she was dithering about going to bed. She’d already brushed her teeth three times.
Grimacing, she turned back to the sink and eyed the woman who peered back. A nervous woman in a short, rose-colored lace nightgown that she might as well not be wearing since everything showed through it. Still, it wasn’t like Basil hadn’t seen everything already.
“Seriously?” she whispered to her reflection. “You’ve already had sex with the man multiple times, but now you’re nervous because you’re sharing a room with him?”
Her reflection didn’t respond, and Sherry rolled her eyes and lectured, “All you have to do is open the door, walk out there and climb into bed. Preferably without tripping and breaking your neck or otherwise humiliating yourself.”
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