“That was pleasant,” Shay said as she opened the door to the Hummer.
“It was rude and prejudiced, that’s what it was,” Vivienne said. “How you could practice with her, Sienna?”
A faint glow of pink colored Sienna’s cheeks. “I didn’t. I practiced with my coven and my mom. I don’t believe that stuff she said.”
“So you don’t think casting is a curse?” Shay asked.
“Of course not. I just didn’t practice it because I didn’t think I had a need for it.”
“Well, I think you’re a very good healer,” Shay told her.
“I don’t understand the point of specializing,” Ace said. “Why not just practice with everything.”
“Too overwhelming,” Phoenix replied. “Trust me. It’d be like going to college and taking five courses in each subject. There’s just too much to learn and each type of practice burns up a certain amount of power and energy.”
“Sienna?” Grandmother Clarissa poked her head out the driver’s side window of the Hyundai. “Are you coming, dear?”
“Yes, Grandmother Clarissa.” Sienna smiled halfheartedly at them and then skipped away to the passenger’s side.
Vivienne got in the backseat of the Hummer first, and then Shay climbed in after her. She put a concerned hand on Vivienne’s shoulder. Her caramel eyes peered out numbly from under her tumbleweed brown hair. Shay had never seen her so quiet or miserable-looking before. It was like she wasn’t even there anymore.
“Don’t listen to her, Vee.”
“Have you ever been called a thing before?” Vivienne said in almost a whisper. “Or an abomination?”
Lacey and Chalice dissolved into loud conversation in the seat in front of them, and Shay realized appreciatively that they were trying to give her and Vivienne some privacy in the confined space of the car.
“They’re not kind words, but they’re also not untrue,” Vivienne said when Shay didn’t reply. “And this isn’t the first time I’ve heard them directed at me.”
“What do you mean? Someone else has said that to you?”
Vivienne shook her head. “It’s nothing.”
“You can tell me—”
“Shay, please. Just let it go. I shouldn’t have said anything.”
Shay stared at her. It hurt that Vivienne wouldn’t tell her what was wrong, and Shay couldn’t help her if she had no angle to start from. But she tried anyway.
“Listen to me, Vivienne. You are no more an abomination than me or Sienna or anyone else.” Vivienne began to say something and Shay slapped her hand over the girl’s mouth, cutting her off. “I’m not finished. Just because you’re a vampire doesn’t make you a bad person. I’ve known other vampires—one in particular—who are the most selfless people I’ve ever met.”
Tears stung Shay’s eyes, but she forced herself to continue. “And that vampire . . . he gave up the most valuable thing a person can give just to save me. He would be alive if it wasn’t for me. I won’t sit here and listen to you say how awful of a person you are just because of what you are. Being a vampire does not define you. Your actions as one does.”
Vivienne looked ashamed, and Shay would have felt bad if she hadn’t thought that was what she needed to hear. She removed her hand from its place over Vivienne’s mouth.
“Now, let’s see those beautiful pearly whites.”
The corner of Vivienne’s lips pulled up, and the pointed end of an extended canine poked out.
“Come on. I know you can do better than that.”
Vivienne smiled—a real smile that exposed her milky white teeth and fangs. A dimple appeared in her right cheek as she laughed and said, “Thank you, Shay.”
Shay smiled in return, and tried to hold back the tears that had formed in her eyes when she had brought Matt up. Her thoughts were filled with images of his green gold-flecked eyes staring up at hers as the light in them went out.
It was like a piece of her was lost, and no amount of tracking spells or potions would help her find it again.
Read, Rate, Subscribe, and Comment
Author’s Note: I know this was kind of short, but I’m planning something big (insert evil laugh). I hope you’re all as excited as I am. Maybe, maybe not. And I just thought I’d also take this moment to rant about how my teacher might make me choose my favorite book character for a school essay. Asdfghjkl. I can make it though this. Stay strong, KayKen. Stay strong. Haha. I feel like such a dork when I write these. Okay. Bye now.