Read Destined (Vampire Awakenings) Online
Authors: Brenda K. Davies
Ethan poked his head
around the corner of the alley;
his gaze instantly dart
to the diner across the street again. Light pooled from the streetlights
across the road and sidewalk, illuminating the cars parked along the street. Light from the diner blazed out of its big, plate
glass windows. The woman that had captured his attention was sitting in one of the booths, her blond head bent over the table
as she read through something
. She looked oddly familiar. Biting on his lower lip, his brows knit together as he studied her more carefully. He knew he had seen her somewhere before, that he knew her somehow, he just couldn’t remember
He pulled his head back and leaned against the cool stone wall. He closed his eyes, searching his memory for any hint of who she might be. He had been doing the same thing for the last five minutes, and it was proving to be a useless endeavor.
“What are you doing?”
He jumped in surprise, his eyes fl
open as Mike and Jack stepped out of the shadows of the ally. “Don’t do that!” he snapped.
They grinned happily at him as they exchanged amused glances. They knew he hated it when they cloaked their presence from him and popped out of nowhere to try and scare him. It often worked. The thing that aggravated him
most was that he couldn’t
do it to the;
that he could not
control his powers as well as they could, and they knew it. “So
what are you doing?” Mike asked again
, his blond
brows drawn questioningly together
scowled at them as he glanced around the corner again. “I was looking at that woman in the diner.”
Their eyes widened as they stared at him in shock.
“Ah hell,” Jack
groaned. “Don’t tell us you’re going to turn into your
, the thought alone ma
his stomach turn
. “She looks familiar, but I can’t
who she is.”
Mike and Jack exchanged a glance before Mike poked his head out
of the alley
to look. “Where?”
Ethan leaned around him and pointed to the small, pudgy woman in the diner window. Mike frowned thoughtfully, then his eyes widened in surprise, and his mouth dropped open. “It’s Kathleen!”
“What?” Jack demanded, shoving his way
them. “Wow! It is!
is that what we’d look like now?”
“She seems to have aged pretty well,” Mike said thoughtfully. “She’s got to be what, forty seven?”
“How old are you dumb
ass?” Jack retorted sarcastically.
Mike scowled at him before turning his attention back to th
e diner. “Forty seven,
Jack smiled triumphantly at him before turning his attention back to the diner.
“There you go. Well, I guess she doesn’t look that bad. I’m just glad we don
’t look like that. Wrinkles
,” he said with a shudder.
“Shut up Jack.
Ethan, go over there
and talk to her
Mike nodded to
his short blond hair
tussled as it fell around his face.
“Go over there.”
Ethan stared at him incredulously. “
go over there,” he retorted.
Mike and Jack looked at him like he was an idiot. “We kn
college, if she saw
the way we look now,
she’d probably have a heart
, as if Ethan were dumb
Ethan was jolted as he suddenly remembered
who she was. Kathleen had been his mother’s best friend in college, but he hadn’t seen her in over fifteen years.
He glanced back at the diner in disbelief.
going to say to her?”
“Just go over there and see how she’s doing. I’m sure your mom would like to
know. Now, go on,” Mike encouraged
Ethan scowled at him. “I’m a little to
old for you to be ordering around.”
“You’re not that big yet, now go,” Mike replied with a b
He would have
stayed and argued with them
, but he knew that it was pointless. They always won, and besides, he was more than a little curious to see how she was doing. He left the alley, jogging easily across the rain washed street to the diner. The bell
the door rang as he entered and the smell of human food
assaulted him. Wrinkling his nose slightly
, he glanced down the line of booths to the middle-aged blond sitting in one of them. Her short blond hair had been pulled into a ponytail, and strands of it had fallen free to curl around her small, heart shaped face.
For a moment he was unable to move as he stared at her. She was not the woman that he remembered. This woman had lines around her mouth and eyes, her forehead was creased, and her skin had begun to sag around her neck and chin. There were strands of gray streaked throughout her hair. This is what his mother should look like, he realized with a start. The thought was incredibly sad, and more than a little frightening. For the first time he truly began to realize his immortality.
“Can I help you?”
Ethan blinked in surprise as he was pulled out of his reverie. A pretty waitress stood before him, an admiring gleam in her dark brown eyes as she openly surveyed him. He returned her smile without thinking. She grinned at him and moved a little closer, the menus in her hand brush
against his chest. “Would you like to sit?” she asked
“Oh, ah no,” he replied, casting a glance at Kathleen as he recalled why he was here. “I just came to see someone.”
Her mouth pouted prettily as she took a step back. Ethan brushed past her, instantly forgetting her existence as he made his way toward Kathleen. He hadn’t seen her since he was ten years old, and he highly doubted that she would remember him, but he might as well try and talk to her. Besides, Mike and Jack would be pissed if he went back with nothing
, and he didn’t feel like dealing with the two of them
. He also knew his mother would love to hear about her old friend, if
didn’t remember him, so what? It couldn’t hurt to talk to her, and he was fairly certain that she would remember everyone else in his life.
, Kathleen right?”
She looked up from the paper she had been engrossed in, her large blue eyes blinking in surprise as her mouth gaped open. “
?” she gasped.
Ethan smiled as he slid into the booth across from her. “No,
’s my father, I’m Ethan.”
Her eyes widened even more as a bright smile spread over her pretty face. “
I’m sorry, it’s just… y
like your father!”
Ethan grinned as he slid an arm over the back of the booth. “So I’ve been told.”
Kathleen’s wide eyes rapidly scanned his face and posture
as she shook her head in disbelief.
“I can see some of your mother in you though. How is she?” she asked eagerly, leaning across the table
as her blue eyes twinkled eagerly
Although she had gained some weight, and her face was more lined, she was much like the Kathleen that he recalled.
She was b
right and energetic, with an easy smile, and an amazing amount of warmth pouring from her. For a moment he felt a stab of pain for his parents, and their friends. They had been forced to let Kathleen go, forced to push her out of their lives in order to protect
, and themselves. He knew how much it had hurt his mother, and from the eager, haunted look in Kathleen’s eyes, he could tell that it had hurt her too.
“Are they still living in Oregon?”
“Does she have the big family that she
she asked eagerly.
Ethan snorted as he grinned brightly.
was not the way that he would describe the mob that was his family. “Yeah, there
ten of us.”
Kathleen’s eyes widened in surprise
she chuckled softly. “Your father must be going insane
with that many kids
, he likes it. Mike and David swear that they’re going to keep going until they have a thousand kids. Fortunately, they
ve decided to take a break for awhile.” He bit on his bottom lip, stopping himself before he told her that they planned to have more later
. He wasn’t at all accustomed to
having to speak
to humans, and he knew that his comment would have
“Honey, that’s not a break,
trust me I know.”
Ethan’s eyes widened as he chuckled softly. He had forgotten how bl
unt, and open, Kathleen was
. “I guess so.”
“Mike and David are still around
?” she asked in surprise.
He nodded as he thought of the giant pain in the asses hiding in the alley across the street.
“Yeah, so are Jack and Doug.”
“Wow,” she breathed. “I can’t believe it. I don’t know how I lost touch with everyone, but I guess as the years go by...” she broke off as she shrugged and glanced down at the paper before her. “Ah well, such is life. So how about you
rself? What have you been up to
Ethan chewed thoughtfully on his bottom lip. How was he supposed to tell this woman that he hadn’t been doing anything but living with Mike, Jack, Doug, and David in the house that they had built behind his parents
? He didn’t have to be up to anything. He didn’t have to do anything but lounge around, enjoy his life, and help keep his unruly brood of brothers and sisters under control.
He could do other things, he simply didn’t want to.
“Ah, not much,” he hedged.
She grinned as she pointed
“That’s your mother.”
“Huh?” he asked in
surprise, his eyebrows drawing together in confusion
her lip when she felt uncomfortable, or nervous, or
when she was
deep in thought,” she explained with a soft smile, her eyes suddenly wistful and distant.
“Yeah, she does.”
Kathleen sighed and her eyes snapped back to his. “Well, you have to be up to something. College?”
“I graduated,” he lied. He hadn’t felt like being bothered to go away to school. His father, mother, and his friends had told him that he would enjoy the experience, even if he didn’t need
the education, but he hadn’t wanted to go. “I do odd jobs here and there.” Which was at least
Kathleen gave him a sad smile as she nodded and took a sip of her water.
you’ll find your own way