“You look totally in awe right now,” Jack smirked at me.
“I am but… don’t change the subject.” I blinked to focus myself. “How are we alive? Is Peter…”
Jack’s lips tightened into a thin line at the mention of him. Maybe it wasn’t the sound of his name quite as much as my underlying concern, but he pushed aside his feelings and decided that I deserved an explanation.
“No. He’s alive.” He let his words hang in the air, and I waited for him to elaborate, but he didn’t.
“How? How are you both alive?” I asked.
“I broke the bond.” The glimmer returned to his eyes and an easy smile spread across his face, enchanting me. “When you drank my blood, whatever tie you had with Peter was severed.”
That should’ve been obvious. As soon as I thought of Peter, I didn’t have that physical ache for him or that fluttery feeling in my heart. While I had concern for his well-being, the only things I felt physically were a dull bloodlust and a pull towards Jack.
“So we’re… bonded now?” I spoke cautiously, afraid it was too good to be true.
After all this time trying to figure a way around it, around Peter, it almost seemed impossible to believe that while I was sleeping, it had happened.
“What do you think?” Jack smiled crookedly at me. Breathing him in, feeling the way my body felt magnetized to his, I knew we were bonded.
My first big clue was when Jack had opened his veins in the den, and I had been unable to resist the scent of his blood. It tasted wonderful, and my mouth watered at the thought of it. But no vampires’ blood should be that appealing to humans. People aren’t meant to have bloodlust, but I did, for Jack.
“So then what happened?” I continued, ignoring the delirious happiness taking over me. My heart sped up and my thirst intensified, but I wanted my curiosity satisfied before I dealt with my other pressing needs.
“I don’t know.” Jack furrowed his brow, but more out of displeasure over the subject. “I was in the den with you, and Peter went crazy in the other room. I was afraid he would hurt you, so I ran out to find out what happened. He was destroying the house, and Ezra could barely contain him. But he didn’t seem to care about me when I came out.”
“But why? If he didn’t want to hurt you, why was he so angry?”
“He felt it break.” He lowered his eyes from mine. “The bond. If you hadn’t been out, you would’ve felt it. And if you hadn’t bonded with me, you’d still be feeling it. Apparently, it’s… incredibly painful.”
“Why?” I asked.
“I don’t know.” He shifted and hesitated before continuing. “Physically, I guess it’s similar to turning, but on a smaller scale. But… something happens emotionally too. And Peter was so riled up from everything else that had been going on.”
Jack didn’t like talking about the fact that Peter had actually cared for me. He didn’t want to believe it because of how Peter treated me and how much Jack loved me. If he admitted that maybe Peter did truly love me, then what Jack had been doing with me suddenly became a betrayal, and Jack did not see it that way.
“So where is he now?” I asked.
“Nobody knows. He’s just gone, for good this time.” Jack shrugged, as if it was of no consequence to him.
“Good,” I lied and hoped he didn’t notice. Then I swatted his arm, probably harder than I meant to from the surprised grimace on his face.
“That’s for being the biggest idiot ever! How could you do something so stupid?” I yelled at him, and it was a tough decision not to hit him again. “You were going to kill yourself! If the bond hadn’t been snapped or whatever, you would’ve been murdered!”
“I didn’t have a choice,” Jack said, and he suppressed a laugh at my mini-outburst. “There was a good chance that I would die no matter what I did. In case you haven’t noticed, I’m a lover, not a fighter.”
“That’s not an excuse,” I said, but a smile started to curl up at my lips.
“I just needed to know you were safe. That was the only thing that mattered to me,” he said earnestly and placed his hand on mine.
Heat instantly spread through me, making my heart flutter. I lunged forward, kissing him and pressing my body against his. He gave into it for a moment, but hunger threatened to completely take control of my body. Just when I was about to let it, he pushed me back from him, and that’s when I got the big sex talk.
After a few days of getting my bloodlust under control, Ezra thought it would be good if I went about cleaning up what was left of my human life. That meant doing fun things, like going with Jack to my mom’s house so we could have this incredibly intense fight when I said that I was moving in with Jack, again. She tried to convince me to stay, then cried a lot, called me names and told me she loved me.
When it was all said and done, she stormed off into the night. I packed up my things, and since I felt incredible guilt, I “borrowed” money from Jack to leave her. Maybe she wouldn’t have to work so hard, and at least that would be something.
Milo called her after I left, as he had been infrequently doing since he moved out. He got to make up all sorts of fancy stories about a boarding school in New York, and that seemed to cheer her up a bit.
I formally dropped out of high school, which I enjoyed. Milo insisted that we both take our high school equivalency later so we could go to college if we wanted, and I agreed to it, but I didn’t really have any intention of doing it. As far as I was concerned, I could spend the rest of my life as a trophy wife, and that was fine by me.
There was the issue with my “best friend” Jane, but I didn’t know how to resolve that. When I went to the high school, she saw me and instantly figured out what had happened. I still looked like me, but I was hotter than I had been before, maybe even hotter than her.
It was during the day, so I was incredibly tired. We exchanged a few heated words, and she ended the conversation with the flippant, “I hope you have a good death.”
Meanwhile, my life as a vampire was pretty damn awesome. There were missteps of getting the handle on walking, moving, breathing, eating… all the basic skills I had taken for granted before. But I was completely and totally in love with Jack, and I had just started spending the rest of eternity with him.
What could I possibly have to feel bad about?