Christa is still unsure she did the right thing.
Jacob opened the door slowly and saw Anna sitting at the window. Inwardly his heart was crying for her yet outwardly he knew that was something that must remain buried. He gave a quick glace over at the men who had entered the room with him. One was a Pure the other a blood bound. It had taken a lot of persuasion on his part but he’d convinced Thomas, the Pure, to allow him to see to Anna’s needs.
Anna closed her eyes a moment and gathered the little strength she that remained. She would play the part of a good Healer for Jacob. She knew she had already brought him disgrace and pain, two things she never wanted to happen. Standing slowly she turned to the men.
“Annabelle.” Jacob quickly crossed the room and pulled her to him. “We have come so that you may feed.” Still holding her close he whispered in her ear, “You know what you must do.”
Anna understood perfectly. “Thank you.” She said in a detached tone. Pulling away from Jacob she looked over at the blood bound man. He was young and handsome and no doubt bound to Thomas.
Thomas Kingdale smiled revealing perfect white teeth. “This is Holden. I’m sure you will find he will satisfy all your needs.”
It took ever bit of willpower on Anna’s part not to flinch. She was being tested that she understood. Forcing herself to smile she crossed the room and took Holden’s hand. Looking into his eyes she spoke in a low, gentle tone. “Please, come sit down.” He followed her to the bed without blinking.
Jacob turned towards the door. He did not want to watch what Anna was about to do, what she had to do.
“Jacob.” Thomas smiled, “You are leaving?”
“I have my own hunger to contend with.” He said shortly. His hatred of Thomas was making it difficult to speak in a civil tone. He hated the Pure with an unbridled passion. He knew the man was testing Anna. Obviously he had reason to believe she was not following all of the Healers codes. With his whole heart he prayed she would some how find the strength to do what was expected.
Thomas gave a small laugh, “As do I but watching this beautiful couple is not something I can walk away from.”
Anna gave Jacob a quick glance and he saw the truth in her eyes. Before Thomas could see that truth she smiled and forced herself to do what she must to protect Jacob. Never could anyone find out she was wrong. She would do anything to protect Jacob just as he had protected her all these years.
So Anna did what she had to do. Clearing her mind she only thought of the blood and soon her hunger took over. Smiling into Holden’s eyes she waited until she heard Jacob leave the room then she pulled her tee shirt over her head and tossed it to the floor. At the sight of her bare breasts Holden moaned. Blocking out the fact that Thomas was watching she quickly helped Holden undress then pulled off the rest of her clothing. The hunger and its lust was now controlling her body. When she pushed Holden back on the bed and straddled him she leaned down to lick his neck. He moaned again knowing soon she would bite unto his skin.
Anna reached down to guide his stiff penis to her opening. She wanted this to be over quickly. However just as she was about to impale herself on him she froze. Even though the hunger was overwhelming images of Gerard filled her brain.
Holden blinked obviously confused as to why she had stopped.
Behind her Anna heard Thomas moving closer to the bed. Tears threatened her eyes yet they could not be shed. Instead she did the only thing she could. Looking down at the man she pictured Gerard’s face. As she slid him deep inside her it was now Gerard she was seeing. Without abandon she fell on him biting into his neck. As his blood filled her mouth she felt even more of her soul dying.
When she felt Holden climax she pulled away quickly. It was over and now she felt even emptier than before.
“That was lovely.” Thomas said with a laugh, “Just lovely.” He continued to speak as Anna got off the bed and pulled on her clothing. “I do hope the council decides to show you mercy.” He lied.
Anna kept her back to him. She could not look at the man without her hatred showing on her face.
“Come now.” Thomas said to Holden. “Annabelle needs time to reflect on her recent actions.”
Once the door was closed and the sound of the men walking down the hall could be heard Anna returned to her spot at the window. Tears rolled down her cheeks, silent tears.
Christa glanced over at Katherine nervously. Since picking her up the Pure had only made small talk. Christa still had no idea where they were going or why.
“Christa, what is it you would like to know?” Katherine asked while keeping her attention on the road.
“Uh..” Christa wished Katherine wasn’t wearing such dark glasses. She would like to have seen the woman’s eyes. “I was wondering if I could ask where we’re going.”
Katherine smiled, “Of course you can ask. It’s not like I’m kidnapping you.”
“Okay, so were are we going?” Christa asked slowly.
“Well I’m sure by now you recognize the fact we are heading into downtown New York City.”
“Yes, but where exactly are we going?” Christa asked nervously.
Instead of answering Katherine asked, “Why did you call me?”
The way she changed the subject so quickly surprised Christa, “Why did I call you?” She thought that would have been obvious.
“Yes, why?” Katherine persisted.
“Because Anna needs help.” Christa said softly once again hoping her actions had not made matters worse.
“And you want to help Anna, why?”
Christa felt like a rat in a maze. Each answer she gave could either help or hurt and she was so confused she didn’t know what to say.
“Because she’s my friend and I care about her.” Christa finally answered.
Katherine sighed, “Wrong answer.”
Nervously Christa twisted her hands in her lap. “Wrong?”
“The correct answer to one blood bound would be because I am bound to her. It is my duty to care for her.” Katherine slowed the car to make a turn then spoke again, “Of course it really doesn’t matter how you answer because your actions were wrong.”
“Why?” Christa’s voice was filled with fear.
“Because I understand that Anna commanded you and Claire to distance yourselves from this, to do nothing. You went against her wishes.”
“I had to.” Christa said speaking from her heart. “None of this is right, it’s not fair.”
“The world is not fair and believe me the world of the Healers is often so far from fair it’s unbelievable.”
“So you’re saying I’ve messed up? I’ve made things worse for Anna?” Christa was now on the verge of tears.
“That, I did not say.” Katherine said softly. “I just want you to understand you must be careful. It is of the utmost importance that you appear to be a normal blood bound human, that is something you must do for Anna. Had you gone to another Pure I fear it would have ended badly.”
“But I felt I could trust you.” Christa admitted.
Pulling in front of a large hotel Katherine put the car in park then turned to Christa. “That trust you feel towards me confuses me.”
Once again Christa felt trapped. “Was I wrong to trust you?” She whispered.
A valet attendant appeared at Katherine’s door. She allowed him to open the door then handed him the keys while another opened Christa’s door. Neither woman spoke as they walked towards the entrance.
“How are you feeling this morning?” Bob asked looking deeply into Claire’s eyes. He knew she had had a very restless night. Several times he’d heard her cry out in her sleep.
Claire pulled the blanket up and sighed, “I feel better.” She lied.
“Hun, maybe we should make you a doctors appointment.” He couldn’t hide his concern. Last night she’d only eaten a few bites of soup.
“No.” Claire shook her head, “I am fine.” She started to push back the covers but his hand shot out to stop her.
“Where are you going?” He smiled, “It’s early we don’t have to get out of bed yet.”
Claire looked into his beautiful blue eyes that were filled with love. She reminded herself she had to stay strong, not just for Bob but also for their baby. “I guess you are right.” She said moving over to snuggle up to his warm body.
Bob dropped a kiss on her forehead, “Oh I almost forgot. Have you talked to Christa lately?”
Claire’s eyes popped open, “Why?”
Bob wondered why the question seemed to surprise her. “Well cause Alicia called a few minutes ago and wanted to know if we’ve heard from Christa. I guess she’s been trying to call her but getting no answer.”
Fear clutched at Claire’s heart. She knew how upset Christa was about Anna. “I talked to her yesterday.”
“She’s probably just out.” Bob guessed.
Claire closed her eyes to hide the look on concern from Bob. However now she was frightened that Christa may have done something wrong in trying to help Anna. She had thought she’d explained to Christa there was nothing they could do now that Anna had commanded them to stay away. It took all the effort she could muster to listen to her husband talk about his plans for the day.
“Damn.” Mikey said letting out a huge sigh.
Alicia looked over at her husband, “What’s wrong?”
“I’ve left three different voice messages for Gerard and he still hasn’t called me back. Last night I even sent him a text but nothing.”
“Have you tried calling Anna?”
Mikey nodded, ‘Yeah, but her phone goes to voice mail just like his.”
Alicia shrugged, “Well the probably just want some alone time.”
“It’s not like Gee to turn off his phone.” Mikey said frowning, “I mean what if something happened and we needed to get a hold of him?”
Getting up from the kitchen table Alicia pulled out two bowls. “Cereal?”
Mikey nodded, “Yeah.”
After she got the cereal, milk and spoons she sat back down. “Well Christa has gone missing too.”
“What?” Mikey asked as he poured the sugar frosted flakes in his bowl.
“I’ve tried to call her several times this morning. I was going to see if she wanted to do something today because I know Ray’s gone.”
“Oh yeah he went with Lou.” Mikey grabbed the carton of milk. “Maybe she went with them.”
“Don’t think so. She made it sound like it was a brothers bonding trip.”
Mikey sat back a minute lost in thought, “Wish Gee and I could do that.” He said softly.
Alicia heard what almost sounded like sadness in his voice, “But you and Gee are together all the time.” She reminded him gently.
Mikey frowned, “I dunno but it just seems like we’re not as close as we used to be.”
“Well then next time you guys have several days off you and Gee head out together.” Alicia suggested.
“Not sure he’d want that.” Mikey answered sadly. “Not sure at all.”
Christa watched as Katherine walked immediately to the check in desk.. It gave her a few minutes to try to get her emotions under control. Now she was terribly nervous about calling Katherine. As she watched she noticed that the Pure looked nothing like she had on tour. Instead of jeans and a tee she was wearing a very expensive designer dress, heals and her hair was in an up-sweep. She looked like a powerful businesswoman and that fact made Christa even uneasier. The Katherine before her looked ruthless not friendly as she’d remembered her.
“Come.” Katherine said turning to motion to Christa.
They walked to a bank of elevators and Christa noticed Katherine chose the one that had access to the penthouse. She smiled at the man inside and it was obvious he recognized Katherine. By the time they arrived at the penthouse floor Christa’s stomach was feeling queasy.
The whole top floor was one suite. Katherine walked into the main living area then kicked off her shoes. “Damn things hurt.”
Christa was looking around in awe. This was by far the nicest penthouse she’d ever seen. As nice as the suites at the Billago had been they were nothing compared to this. “Uh do you stay here often?”
Katherine laughed, “No, this isn’t exactly my taste. Too Donald Trump for me.” She said as she moved towards the ornately carved wooden bar. She removed a bottle of campaign from a silver ice bucket then obviously pleased with the vintage opened it to fill three crystal fluted glasses.
She motioned for Christa to join her then handed her a glass. Christa took it but wondered about the third glass. Katherine understood.
“You are wondering who will be joining us?”
“That would be me.” A deep voice said from across the room.
Christa turned to see Hudson moving towards them.
“Hello Christa.” He said in his trademark deep, rich tone.
It was hard for her not to stare. While the truth of what he truly was still frightened her, his appearance was hard to ignore. He wore tight jean and an unbuttoned cream color shirt. He smiled at Christa then glanced down. “Oops forgot.” He reached down to fasten the buttons.
Katherine rolled her eyes. “Sorry we disturbed you.”
Hudson laughed, “No problem. I was just keeping myself occupied until you arrived.” As he was still speaking two young women wandered out of what Christa guessed was one of the bedrooms. Judging by the looks on their faces it was obvious what Hudson had been doing to stay busy.
He walked over to them, whispered something that made them both giggle then escorted them to the elevator. As the door slid closed he crossed the room to the bar. “Now then.” He picked up his glass and looked at Christa. “I understand you called Katherine?”
“Yes.” Christa confirmed gripping her glass tightly.
“Why did you not think to call me? You know both Anna and Gerard are bound to me.”
Christa found herself staring into his eyes. “Honestly?”
Hudson smiled, “Yes, honestly.”
“It did cross my mind but I didn’t know how to get a hold of you.”
His smile faded, “Yeah, I guess that’s true. But if you could have called me would you?”
While trying to decide how to answer Christa took a long sip of champagne. Hudson made her extremely nervous. “I’m not sure.” She finally admitted.
“You are not sure if you trust me.” Hudson said softly taking the glass from her hand. He placed it on the bar then took both of her hands in his. “We must work on that.”