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What is she doing here? 

 

Tom marched toward the door with a determined stride. The crowded floor seemed to part around him, as if they all instinctively knew to stay out of his way. If anger had an odor...

 

As if intended, Roderick slipped just behind Tom as he got near Eris and Ahanu. Tom gave him a quick glance, and Roderick looked away briefly, guilt plain on his face. 

 

This was his fault. They'd have a discussion about this later. Rage boiled up inside him unconsciously...the moon was soon and it was evident. Brows furrowed and a low growl escaped. Suddenly, a gentle calm slid over him. His rage subsided a bit. A barely controlled inferno reduced to a contained blaze. The fury and passion was there, however, thanks to Roderick, it was contained. For now. 

 

Walking up to the tiny woman, Tom greeted her with a warm and welcoming smile. His smile was tempered a bit as he caught a whiff of Eris's silver necklace, but that was quickly dismissed, smile returning in full. 

 

Welcome to Bakkhos. I'm glad you decided to come. He said as he offered his hand to her.

 

This wasn't untrue. There was a part of him that was glad to see Eris again. Tom was just not a large fan of surprises...especially those that involve someone like Eris. 

 

Stealing a quick glance at Roderick, he noted that he appeared to be nervous, slightly. Great. Someone was smitten. This is why this scenario exists? Yes. They would definitely be talking later. 

 

 

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She hated people.

 

She hated people.

 

She hated people.... dark lashes narrowed as she stared down a party goer that had attempted to make a beeline toward her and Ahanu with a tumbler of something from the bar.  A small head shake and he was moving back toward the bar.

 

Nose crinkled slightly, refusing the urge to rub it to ease the smell of pheromones... and chlorine... and sweat... booze-y sweat, crappy perfume.  Sex.  The whole damn room smelled like hot blood and sex.

 

...and agitated Lycanthrope.

 

...with a smitten Roderick in tow.

 

For Christ's sake.  

 

Eyes flicked to the still somewhat deserted patio as an escape.  Seemed all the fun was in here, which meant she would rather be out there.  A glass of something, watching the dark sky in swirls of winter cold and warmed air, relishing in the silence.

 

But no.

 

Silent, rolling thunder may have parted the seas for him, but it stopped short when it hit her cool wall of indifference.  She didn't move, for anyone, and she didn't care if they wanted her to either.  He would never be able to sneak up on her...not that she wasn't okay with that.

 

Nostrils flared slightly as she breathed it in, the fresh blood in her veins allowing her to read more into the intricacies that most would never know.  Alpha, with a scent as good as a fingerprint now.  She'd killed an alpha once, regretfully... but he'd been trying to kill her in full fang mode so it was necessary.

 

"Welcome to Bakkhos, I'm glad you decided to come."

 

The slight curl of her lip paused, then tilted upward on one side in a lopsided grin.  Brow quirked.

 

The word liar almost slipped from her lips.  She nodded slightly, the faint amused expression on her face evident she knew the jig was up between Ahanu and Roderick.  It wasn't often she overlooked things, but wasn't surprised.  Ahanu was beautiful in every sense of the word, she expected it, but Ahanu rarely returned affection.  The Viceroy wouldn't be tweaked about it, the air magus could be with anyone she chose.  Just wasn't sure if Roderick knew what he was getting into...

 

The shaking hands thing again...she had to remind herself he was just being polite. Unless she was feeding, fighting or fucking she hated touching people.  A distaste that had lingered from her mortal years.  When people wanted to touch her they were either teasing, beating the crap out of her or shooting at her... among other humiliations she no longer had to endure.

 

Graceful hand withdrew from her pocket to shake Gallo's, grip iron, skin warmer than usual.  Business had essentially concluded between them, he wasn't under any obligation to entertain her.  She could entertain herself.

 

"Pleased to be invited Mr. Gallo.  I'll get out of your hair now and let them have their..."  lower lip rolled through her teeth, "...date."

 

Brutal honesty was quiet, calm, rum rich with honey, and still licked of amusement.  She'd gotten all dressed up to be a chaperone.  Dark eyes flicked to Ahanu, she nodded toward the patio.  Veiled, aloof smirk glanced at Roderick a moment before releasing Gallo's hand and sliding hers back into her pocket.

 

She wouldn't ruin an evening for Ahanu with her business.  Business could come later.  Pristine, plain manicure traced delicately down the silver chain briefly to make sure the gold ring was still tucked in the folds of her shirt.

 

Another time.

 

"Besides, I forgot my bikini," comment to Ahanu was under her breath, extremely rare warm humor quiet as eyes slid over to the patio to find an escape route.  "Keep the car... I'll find my own way home when I want to leave."

 

When, not if.  Not bored, just tired of crowds.  She hated people because people hated her.  The bullying and ire thrown at her for twenty years of her life had stored in her psyche like kinetic energy.  It would be a long time resonating back into the world, if it ever ran out.  Came off as arrogance, and she was okay with that.

 

Glance again to Gallo was uncharacteristically more cordial than usual.  She'd been had, but was okay with that too... for a while anyway... because it was Ahanu.  There would be a limit though to her tolerance for watching drunken brouhaha, even if it was trying to be fashionable.  The Sheut didnt want to hold her back.  The entire room smelled like sex and ego.  She needed silence, air, and a damn drink.

 

Besides... Bakkhos may have thought they were scoping her out, it was completely the reverse.  There was some clue in their tight inner circle that the world was more organized than they thought, how much of a clue they had that she was that umbrella that weathered the storm for them to rebuild was yet to be seen.  Maybe she could get some insight tonight.  

 

Or maybe she could just stare at the stars.

 

Stars were more interesting.

 

Nod was slight to all, and she moved to make her escape.

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