Friday, January 25, 2019
Stefan’s Diaries: The Craving Chapter 12
The next few days drifted by, full of wedding planning and menu sampling. At night, the Sutherlands settled into a stabilise r turn come onine. Mrs. Sutherland took to the sewing room, teaching Lydia to make quilts and bonnets. Bridget indulged in a late-night beauty regime that involved brushing her hair in one hundred strokes and lathering herself in cream that I could smell all the way from the parlor. Winfield always retired to his psychoanalyse with a tumbler of brandy, perusing the paper or going bothplace his accounting books.Id undertaken to pacing the first floor, coming up with plans to ferryboat the Sutherlands to safety only to shoot down most of my ideas. I withal now needed to plan my feedings. My steady diet of city animals was harder to hang in up now that I was under the watchful eye of every Sutherland and servant. It was almost like they expected me to try and make a tumble for it, though it was impossible to know how much of that was genuine wariness ve rsus Damon compel them to follow me. Sometimes I managed to slip away, whether up to the roof or silently down to the acanthayard to try and find a rat or pigeon or even a mouse to satisfy my needs. Hazel, the place cat, was run into limits of course, provided fortunately her wild tomcat friends were not.Damon had no such nutritional problems. Nor did he care much to the highest degree secrecy. He came and went as he pleased, doing God knows what in the darkest corners of the city. I often saw a maiden or manservant summoned to his suite in the coldest hours of the night as I skulked about tending to my own needs. For my brother, life with the Sutherlands was like living in a grand hotel he attended dinners in his honor and was feted all almost town at the top establishments. He was a prince and New York was his passionateness few kingdom.When Damon arrived home on Thursday, Winfield poked his stop out of the study.Oh, good. Im glad youre here, Winfield verbalize, holding out two glasses of whiskey. Please come join me.There was a stray drop of blood carelessly smeared on the corner of Damons mouth. Anyone else would pose assumed it was a shaving cut. Suddenly the cozy study reckoned suffocate and the corners darker.Damon casually wiped his lips, his eyes on me, then threw himself down on the roll next to his future father-in-law, less like an Italian count and more like well, Damon. Good evening, sir. The fact that he dropped his fake accent in their presence highlighted practiced how under his thrall this family was.I wanted to name a chat with the two of you about your futures, Winfield began, chomping on his cigar.Oh, I have big plans, Im intellection long-term, Damon said. Living here with the family, of course. I love close kin.My throat went dry and I ran a hand through my hair, beginning to panic, reminded once again that I had no idea what Damon real wanted.I think I should like to go into business for myself, Damon began to say. still then the door of the study slammed open and Margaret came striding in.PapaWithout a rule book to either of us she threw a copy of the days Post down into her fathers detention and tapped at an article. Read this.Winfield fished around in his pockets for his glasses and slid them on, peering at the paper. Sutherland house is scandalized as two penniless suitors sweep away the last of the qualified Sutherland girls. Heartbroken sons of bankers, politicians, and empires of capital complain bitterly about the sudden move. Is it blackmail, some wonder? An unnamed source close to the family claims that Oh, rubbish, he said, throwing the paper by and taking off his glasses. People talk about the silliest things.We will be ruined, Margaret said, almost pleading. She completely ignored Damons and my presence. At the very least, cant you see how it would be bad for business?Dont you think you should leave that sort of talk for the menfolk? Damon asked lazily, reversive to his accen ted English. But his ice-blue eyes bored straight into her head, as if he wished he could put a bullet there. I stood up, placing myself between Margaret and him. She didnt seem to notice his hatred, or the danger she was in.I understand your concerns, I said quickly. I had to convince her to drop this, for her own sake. But believe me, I want aught but the best for your family.And in fact, we menfolk were just public lecture about business, Winfield added. Damon, you were saying?All I need is a miniature sum of bullion, my brother said, turning his head and effectively cutting Margaret out of the conversation. Which will allow me to travel to my home country and start selection out vendors for exports.Margaret let out a gasp. Youre not actually thinking of giving him more than his dowry?Dont be greedy, pet, Winfield said, shushing her with a patronizing gesture. Its just seed money to get him on his way.Have you gone crazy? she demanded. You dont even know this man. Let him w ork for you first. Or march on him one of your smaller businesses to run.Damon rose from his seat, coldly furious. I tried to take Margarets arm, but she shook me off. She pulled herself up to her full height, staring straight back into his eyes. Though she wasnt quite as pretty as either of her junior sisters, she was certainly imposing.You all have been acting completely mad since he showed up, she said to her father, not looking away from Damon. Letting him and him she gestured at me set about practically members of this family, live under our roof, share our bread, and then offer them cash and your daughters and everything else Doesnt anyone think this is strange besides me?Winfield looked upset, but confused.Damon widened his eyes.Stop, he compelled her. Just take back Stefan and me were here to stay.She looked at him for a long moment. I waited for her eyes to glass in over, for her pupils to dilate ever so slightly. But all she did was shake her head in disgust. Your phony count act might work with other people, but not me. I want no part of this.I stared at her, stunned, as she stormed out. Id never seen Damon fail to compel someone, not even when hed been late and weak. I inhaled deeply, searching for hints of vervain, anything to explain what had just happened. But there was nothing there.All I could do was hope that whatever it was, it would continue to cover Margaret safe.