Home > Immortal Hearts (Vampire Kisses #9)(13)

Immortal Hearts (Vampire Kisses #9)(13)
Author: Ellen Schreiber

She rolled her chocolate-brown eyes. "Well, you've been gone a long time. How can I tell you everything?"

"What do you mean?" Alexander took a bite of his meal.

"You were only supposed to be gone until the Maxwell feud was over," she said, pushing her peas around with her fork. "And it is. Once you took Valentine back to Jagger, it was over. But you didn't come home. You stayed here." She didn't look at me. She didn't have to. I could feel the tension from the younger Sterling as if she blamed me for his absence.

"I know," he said. "But I have a life here now, too. So what is so different without me?"

"The house is so big. I have no one to talk to."

"We didn't talk all the time," he said.

"I know. But it was nice having you there. That's where you live, remember?"

"Well, I live here. For now. Mom and Dad told you that."

"I know. But it's so far away. You get to have all the fun. It's not fair."

"I'm sure you have fun, too."

"I do not. Not like you. You get to meet a lot of people. You get to do what you want."

"I'm eighteen," he said. "When I was twelve, I didn't get to do everything that I wanted. Besides, I could be going to college soon, anyway. You have to get used to my being away."

"But this is different," she said.

"Why?"

"You know why...." she hinted.

"Maybe we should talk about this later? You just got here."

I thought it best to divert the conversation. "Are you homeschooled like Alexander?" I asked Stormy.

"Yes."

"Do you like that?" I wondered.

"I guess so," she said. I was surprised she wasn't more excited.

"I'm jealous of that. I think it would be so cool. Hanging out at home. Getting to watch TV."

"I don't get to watch TV."

"You don't?"

"It's like jail."

"It is not," Alexander said with a laugh.

"Not to you," she said. "You are here."

"I call this town Dullsville," I said, "and I say that for a reason."

"C'mon. You have a great time," Alexander said. "You study, you travel. You have a lot of friends."

"I do not!" she said. "I don't even have a boyfriend."

"Well, you have plenty of time for that." Alexander was emphatic.

"I'm twelve! I get just as thirsty as you do."

Alexander cleared his throat.

"I can't believe you don't have friends," I said. "I bet you have tons."

"Yes, a few. But I don't have a boyfriend, and the only guy I get to hang out with is Valentine."

"Valentine Maxwell?" I asked, referring to the Maxwell twins' younger sibling. He was my brother Billy's age. Billy, his friend Henry, and Valentine had hung out together when Valentine came to Dullsville in search of his older siblings. Instead he found a friendly clique with Billy and Henry and tried to become blood brothers with them. But soon Valentine grew thirsty, and without another to feed on or a bottled-blood-filled cellar like the Mansion's, Valentine grew weak.

Alexander returned Valentine to a thankful Jagger in Hipsterville, and the feud with the Maxwells was over.

"Ooh, do you like him?" I pried.

"He's cute."

"He is?" Alexander asked, surprised. "I've never heard you talk about him that way."

"But I want to meet new guys. And Mother and Father keep me studying too much of the time."

"Well, your education is very important," Alexander said.

"Ugh," she said. "You would say that. You all want me locked up forever."

"You are not locked up," he said. "Quit being so dramatic."

"I am; you don't even know. You don't mind painting in your room for hours. But I want to be out and seeing the world."

"Well, you are here, now," he said. "This is getting out into the world."

She made a face at her brother. "I know. I'm glad I'm here."

"So what do you like to do for fun?" I asked.

"Uh... I read and write poems."

"And try to sneak out of the house?" Alexander teased.

"Just sometimes," she said with an impish smile.

"I do that, too," I said.

"You do?" She gazed at me skeptically.

"Well, I really sneak in more places than I sneak out of. In fact, that's the first time I saw Alexander face-to-face. Right there - " I said, pointing to the bottom of the staircase.

Alexander cleared his throat again.

"It's no secret," I said.

"Secret?" she asked eagerly. "Tell me!"

I leaned forward. "I snuck into the Mansion."

"You did?" Again she was skeptical.

"Yes," I answered proudly. "And it wasn't the first time."

"Maybe she shouldn't hear all this," Alexander said.

"No, tell me." Stormy was keen to hear more. "I must know."

"I used to sneak in here when I was younger."

"Why would you want to sneak in?" she wondered.

"I wanted to see what was on the inside."

"Funny, I've always wanted to see what is on the outside," she said.

"Well, we will get to that tomorrow," Alexander said as we finished our desserts.

It wasn't long before Alexander was preparing to take me home. I was grabbing my coat in the foyer when I overheard the two siblings talking in the kitchen. I knew I should let the two of them talk privately, but I couldn't help myself. It wasn't like me not to eavesdrop.

knew I should let the two of them talk privately, but I couldn't help myself. It wasn't like me not to eavesdrop.

I tiptoed over to the kitchen's entryway and hung outside of view.

"So what Can hear mor are we going to do here?" I heard Stormy ask. "I want to see the town. And Luna."

"We'll see her sometime."

"But when? I've missed her so much."

"I don't know."

"I can't wait to see her."

"But don't you think Raven's cool?"

"Yes, she is very pretty. Mother and Father raved about her when they came home."

"They did?" His voice was bright.

"All they talked about for a week straight was Raven." Her voice grew dark.

"Well, I know you guys will be fast friends."

There was a pause.

"Why haven't you come home?" Stormy asked softly. "Is it because of me?"

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