Marcus opens up to Gerard.
He left the bedroom then travel down the stairs to the front veranda, relived not to encounter anyone else. His thoughts were confused and he needed time to sort them out. Unfortunately as he walked through the doors and into the night air he knew immediately he was not alone.
Gerard looked up as Marcus neared. He’d purposely waited until Anna had fallen asleep to leave her side. However now that he saw Marcus his earlier anger returned. Not caring if he angered the Pure or not he spoke.
“Why the fuck did you do that to her?”
Marcus took several steps forward to lean against one of the large wooden pillars. The light given off by one of the outdoor lights allowed him to see the anger on Gerard’s face.
Gerard took a deep drag off his cigarette again waiting. When Marcus remained silent his anger erupted. “Damn it, I saw what you did to her. Yeah, I get that you wanted her to see just what one of your parties is like but that’s no excuse. You fuckin’ treated her like shit.” He braced himself for Marcus’s fury knowing how dangerous it was to speak to a Pure this way but finding it impossible to keep his rage inside. Much to his surprise Marcus remained silent as he turned to stare out into the darkness.
The fact that Marcus hadn’t responded shocked Gerard. Either he had angered him so much he was about to strike or something he didn’t understand was happening. He waited several minutes before speaking again. “So are you gonna answer me?”
Marcus reached for Gerard’s pack of cigarettes and took one. After he’d lit it and took a deep drag he spoke. “You must care about her very much to risk speaking to a Pure like this.”
“Of course I do. That’s Ray’s daughter. Shit, if Anna had seen what was going on she’d be livid.”
“She didn’t see?”
“No, she only knows Casey became involved.” Gerard admitted. “I made sure to keep her attention away from you.”
“Thank you for that.” Marcus said softly.
A thread of uneasiness traveled down Gerard’s spine. First Marcus had not responded to his anger and now he was thanking him? “What the fuck is going on?”
Instead of answering that question Marcus said. “While I know you are angry you have to admit that it’s just not my parties that are like that. You’ve been to others. You know what Casey saw tonight is the norm for us.”
Gerard snorted, “You heard Jonathan. Fuck Marcus, you are famous for your parties. Fuckin’ making people dress up and shit.”
“They don’t mind and you know that’s true.”
“Look, I don’t give a shit about that. I care about Casey and what you did to her went beyond what was necessary. Last I’d heard she wasn’t supposed to be involved she was just supposed to be there.”
“I didn’t want her involved.” Marcus said slowly. “She defied me.”
Gerard stared at him.
“Besides.” Marcus said, “You really think it would have been okay for her to just watch?’
That caused Gerard to pause. “I think she had no idea what she was letting herself in for.”
“I agree. But she wanted to see first hand what it is like to be a part of the Healer World.”
Gerard still could tell something wasn’t right. Suddenly be believed he understood. “So she’s changed her mind?”
Marcus shook his head, “No, she still wants to be a Healer.”
“I don’t get it.” Gerard said tossing his cigarette butt out into the darkness. “You treated her like shit and she still wants this?”
Gerard was surprised when Marcus suddenly turned to him. “Tell me about the first time you saw Anna.”
“You were a boy, right?” Marcus asked.
“Yeah, I was six.”
“Do you remember it?”
Gerard was confused by the turn in the conversation. “I remember. I was with my grandma. I’d dropped by sand pail and was upset. Suddenly Anna was there with the pail.” He smiled remembering the day. “I thought she was an angel.”
Gerard nodded, “Oh yeah. She was so beautiful and that long white hair.”
Marcus stopped him. “She had long white hair then?”
“Yeah. My mom and grandma both told me I talked about the angel lady for weeks after it happened.”
“And you didn’t recognize her when you met her again?”
Gerard leaned against the wooden railing. “Nope. Shit, so many years had gone by.”
Marcus was searching his memory but realized he’d never cared enough to find out about Anna’s healing of Gerard. He only knew that it had happened. “So she came back into your life to heal you?”
“I had a brain tumor.” Gerard explained. “It was slowly killing me. That is why Anna came into my life. But she’d been there all along I just never knew it. She watched over me.”
“She watched over you?”
“Yeah, she wanted me to live my life. She wanted me to be happy.”
Marcus was confused. “Wait. How does this soul mate shit fit in?"
Gerard stared at him. “What?”
“Well I thought you two thought you were soul mates.” Marcus said quickly.
“We are.” Gerard answered softly. “Anna realized it the first time she looked into my eyes. I didn’t until I was a man and met her again.” He saw Marcus turn away. “Oh.” He said suddenly realizing why the Pure had asked.
“Oh what?” Marcus asked becoming annoyed. He hated that a blood bound, even one he cared for, seemed to think he understood something about him.
“Do you believe in soul mates?” Gerard asked hoping Marcus would be honest.
“All of us Pures have heard the myth. But most of us believe that’s just what it is, a myth.”
“It was Jacob who told Anna she could one day find her soul mate.” Gerard said still watching Marcus closely. “He’s a Pure that believes it.”
“Yeah, Casey said the same thing.” Marcus took a drag off his cigarette. “But we both know Jacob is unique.”
“Unique or not he’s still a Pure.”
Marcus stared silently into the darkness.
It all suddenly became so clear to Gerard. He could almost feel the struggle that was going on inside the Pure. “Marcus, what do you believe?”
Marcus lowered his head then closed his eyes. “I believe for the first time in my existence I’m unsure. For the first time I do not feel in control and I don’t like it.”
“But you like how she makes you feel, don’t you?”
“She confuses the shit out of me.” Marcus admitted. The closeness he felt to this blood bound made him continue. “I want to protect her, I want what’s best for her.”
“This ain’t just the blood bound talking is it?” Gerard had to know.
“No, since that day in the cemetery when our eyes met I felt something. I’ve watched over her for so long. There were times she seemed so sad I wanted to go to her but I didn’t. I wasn’t sure it would be the right thing to do.”
“Just like Anna watched over me.’ Gerard whispered.
Marcus sighed, “I’m still not sure. I want her with me so much but regardless of how I feel towards her I’m still a Pure. I can’t change that.”
“What you did tonight was because you were angry at how she makes you feel, wasn’t it?”
“That was part of it. Yeah, I was angry but at the same time I thought that if she saw the truth of what I am she’d change her mind.”
“You want her to change her mind?” Gerard was confused again.
“No.” Marcus answered quickly. “But I don’t want her to be hurt, ever.”
Gerard thought a minute. “Anna and I have learned to live in the Healer world. I’m sure Casey can too.”
Marcus moved away from the railing and began pacing. “But that’s just it. She’s my blood bound. Yeah, I’m sure she could learn to live as such but she wants more.”
“She wants to be a Healer.” Gerard said understanding Marcus’s dilemma. “And you’re afraid that if she’s wrong about being given permission to be turned she will be hurt.”
“Fuck.” Marcus’s voice rose. “She’ll be hurt but so will I. I want her with me. Not just now in this life but always. Even if I’m given permission to turn her, it’s never been done. A Ingredior Utriusque has never been turned. What if it’s impossible? What if I tried to turn her and she doesn’t return to me?"
“She could die?” Gerard whispered in shock.
“I don’t know.” Marcus was still pacing. “I just don’t know and I’m not sure I can take that chance.”
Love for the Pure made Gerard react. He grabbed Marcus’s arms halting his pacing. “Look, I truly believe that what is meant to be is meant to be. I know you’re unsure but I believe in my heart this will all work out.”
Marcus was still unsure. “I don’t know. Shit, how did this happen to me? I’ve existed for so long on my terms.”
“You’ve lived the high life of a Pure.” Gerard said knowingly.
Marcus frowned, “Yes, and rightly so.”
“But now you face something totally unexpected.”
“Gerard, what if she tires of me? I mean I’m not the nicest guy, I know that.”
Gerard threw his head back and laughed, “Oh, shit. Dude, you’ve got it bad.”
Marcus’s eyes flashed, “This isn’t funny.”
“I know.” Gerard relented. “But it’s gonna work out. Obviously she’s crazy about you.”
Marcus resisted the idea of asking Gerard if he was really sure about that. Instead he said slowly. “But if she’s turned what if she only loves me as her Maker?”
“That didn’t happen to Anna and me.”
“But it could.” Marcus said angrily.
Gerard decided to say something he knew could anger Marcus even more but he felt it needed to be said, “You know the problem is Pure’s never take chances. Being immortal nothing you really do is a chance. You are getting a taste of what it’s like being mortal."
Marcus was angry but he controlled the feeling. “Tell me which do you prefer?"
“You mean did I like being mortal more than immortal?”
Gerard smiled, “I had a great life as a mortal but I love being a Healer.” He paused, “I mean first off because I am with Anna for all time but it’s more than just that. The first time I used by gift to heal someone the feeling was beyond words.”
“You healed a young girl, correct?”
“Yep. It was almost a year after I’d been turned. She’d fallen off a huge wall outside a venue. She’d been trying to get a glimpse of what was going on. Anna and I saw it happen. Anna was going to heal her but she suddenly stopped and told me that I should do it.” Gerard paused. “I looked at the girl and knew she was right. I could just feel healing the girl, who was badly injured, was the right thing to do.”
Marcus titled his head, “You have adapted to the life much easier than Anna.”
“I suppose that’s true in a way. But never think it hasn’t been hard. Knowing that my mom and dad died and I wasn’t there….knowing Mikey is growing older each year and I’ll never get to speak to him again. That’s fuckin’ hard. But I’ve never once regretted that Anna turned me. And I don’t think Casey would ever regret it either.”
“I hate all the uncertainty.” Marcus said sounding defeated. “And having His Excellence impending arrival ain’t making me feel any better.”
Gerard nodded, “Yeah, Anna and I are both worried. She tried calling Jacob earlier but he didn’t answer.”
“I tried to call him too.” Marcus admitted. “So that leads me to believe as the head of the High Council he’s coming with His Excellence.”
“That’s what Anna thinks too. She’s worried but I keep telling her we’ve done nothing to cause any suspicion. We live as Healers.”
Marcus walked over and took a seat. “You two have done well, very well.”
Gerard sat down next to him then stretched out his legs. “But I won’t lie. At times it’s hard.”
“Like the party?”
“We both know we have to do certain things that we don’t want to do.”
Marcus looked over at him. “Casey noticed that while you two interact with others ultimately you end up together.”
Gerard smiled, “That we do.” He wanted to give Marcus hope. “You and Casey can do the same thing.” He paused, “I mean if that’s that you want.”
“I can’t believe I’m gonna say this.” Marcus whispered, “But she’s the only woman I want.”
Gerard clasped him on the back. “Then as a Pure you can make sure she’s the only woman you have.”
When Gerard returned to the bedroom hours later Anna was awake. “Have you spoken to Marcus?”
Gerard gave her a surprised look. “Uh, yeah. He and I talked.”
Anna sighed, “Gee, I know you were very angry about what happened with Casey and I also know you must have seen something that I did not.”
He walked over to the bed and took a seat beside her. “Okay, you’re right I was angry.”
“And?” Anna stared at him pointedly.
Gerard was not about to tell her what he’d seen Marcus do to Casey. Instead he smiled, “Uh, you’re not gonna believe this but poor Marcus is in love.”
Anna frowned, “You are speaking of the love he feels for Casey because of their bond?”
“Nope. According to Marcus it’s much more than that. Shit, the dude was been watching over her since Ray and Christa’s accident. Gotta tell you I was shocked when he asked me about us being soul mates.”
“You are saying he believes he and Casey are soul mates?” Anna’s eyes had grown wide with surprise.
Gerard nodded. “Yep and fuck is it upsetting him.”
“Because he does not want to have those feeling for her?”
Leaning back against the headboard Gerard stretched out his legs before answering. “You gotta know how hard this is for him to deal with. Marcus has been in control of everything…”
Anna cut him off “And everyone”
“Yeah, well true. He’s been in control his whole existence.”
Anna smiled, “Once when I asked Katherine if she thought Marcus believed in soul mates she said she was sure he would never want to find his.”
“Because he enjoys being with so many different women?"
“And men” Anna said softly. “You know first hand that is the truth.”
Gerard who felt no shame in what he and Marcus had shared in the past shrugged, “Yep, that’s true. But now Casey is in the picture he’s all messed up. He told me he wants her at his side for all time but he’s afraid he won’t be given permission to turn her.”
“I am still not convinced that would be wise.’ Anna said softly.
“That’s not up to us.” Gerard reminded her. “But he’s also afraid to be given permission"
Anna nodded. “Because a Ingredior Utriusque has never been turned.”
“Right.” Gerard said as he put his arm around her to pull her close. “He is worried about how she would be after being turned.” He decided Anna should know the whole truth. “He’s also afraid he could lose her.”
Anna had already thought the same thing. “That death would claim her and she wouldn’t return.”
“Yeah.” He hugged Anna tightly when he saw the look of sadness cover her face.
“So have you decided to send me away?”
Marcus stopped in mid-step. “What?”
Casey sighed, “Well you’ve been gone a long time and I’m sure you’ve been thinking about everything.” She looked at him closely. “And right now I can’t hear your thoughts clearly at all.” A tear appeared in her eye.
“Oh fuck.” Marcus crossed the room quickly hating to see her sad. He sat down on the bed then scooped her up to settle her on his lap. “Hell, no I’m not gonna send you away.”
Casey looked into his eyes searching for the truth. A moment later she smiled, “Good cause I wouldn’t go anyway.”
Marcus laughed, “God, you are feisty just like your mom was.”
Casey grinned, “She could be when she knew she was right. I remember she used to get feisty with dad when they’d disagree on something. She was usually right.”
“They loved each other very much.’ Marcus said knowing it was the truth.
Casey smile faded, “And we both know had she not already been in love with dad she would have loved you.”
He shook his head, “No, I don’t think that’s true.”
“It’s true. You held a special place in her heart. I could hear it in her voice when she talked about you.”
“That was because of the blood bond.”
Casey shook her head slowly. “No, I don’t believe that. You’ll just have to face the truth, you are very lovable.”
Marcus rolled his eyes, “Yeah, right.”
She placed her lips gently against his neck. “Well I think you are. No, I know that to me you are.”
Marcus moaned softly. “Stop that. His Excellence should be here soon and I definitely don’t want to have to start thinking about dead puppies again.”
Casey’s laughter tickled against his skin.
He shifted her away from him slightly so he could look into her eyes. “There are some things you need to know before he arrives.”
Casey smiled, “I know I’m not supposed to look at him unless he tells me too.”
“Your mom told you that.”
“Yep. I hope he likes me as much as he liked her.” Casey said softly.
Marcus frowned slightly, “She thought he liked her?” He didn’t mean it to sound bad and he hoped Casey understood that.
Fortunately she did understand. “Yeah” She grinned, “See I know what they talked about but you don’t.” She teased.
“I’m not sure Christa should have told you about that.” Marcus said cautiously.
“She believed it should know since it had something to do with me. His Excellence had told her it was possible she would have a child who was Ingredior Utriusque and once she realized I was then she felt I should know.”
Marcus smiled, “You know I could get the information out of you.”
Casey shook her head, “No, you can’t. You can’t glamour me.”
His fingers trailed up her side lightly, “I can be very persuasive.”
“Oh I’m sure of that.” Casey laughed, “But as a Pure you won’t try to learn what you know His Excellence doesn’t want you to know.”
“Marcus.” Gerard’s voice started them.
They turned to see him standing in the doorway.
“His Excellence is here.” Gerard told them. “Anna is downstairs with him already.”
“Showtime.’ Marcus said softly.
Casey gave him a final hug then slid off his lap to dress.