DISCLAIMER: All characters are the sole property of Stephenie Meyer. No profit is or will ever be made from this down-right, poorly-written, horrible fan-fiction.
HOUSE OF THE HORDE
There are said to be monsters living in Los Angeles county. Some will steal your money, others your heart, then there are those who want your soul.
They come in many forms, and Bella Swan believes she knows about all of them, but that is about to change with a chance meeting, or is it chance at all?
Stolen away to the darkest recesses of Hollywood, Bella will question everything she has known as she faces a new type of monster.
Can she escape, or will she fall victim to a lethal vampire?
Some sexual content
(no rape scenes)
OOC/AU/Vamp & Human/"Darkward"
. . .
| |. . . E. . . | |
. . .
It felt like a cool, gentle breeze pushed my hair away from my face, but it was his fingertips on my neck. I turned, preparing to push him away or dig my nails into his face, but his iron hands seized my wrists and twisted them both behind my back. He roped my hair into his other, wringing it around his fingers and palm, pulling my head. A vice. I couldn't move, couldn't fight. My throat became an involuntary invitation.
I could only gasp and watch him inch closer, his dark, red eyes on mine, his lips parted and his hair wild from our skirmish. His grip stole the breath from my lungs and time slowed as I was forced to concentrated on every sensation.
I felt the tip of his nose as it searched my throat; his breath cold and erratic, almost desperate. Then, lips dragged against my skin, and the world stood still. His breathing halted. His mouth parted further.
|. . . : . . .|
The Wrong Prince
|. . . : . . .|
The movie was Night of the Living Dead.
The company was Jessica Stanley.
The reason? Jessica hated her roommate.
I hated her roommate, too. Not only because she was a bitch, but she drove Jessica to my door at the most inconvenient times (like when I had homework), begging me to let her in. I didn't have one, a roommate that is, and I worked hard to keep it that way just to avoid those annoying incidents that Jessica went through.
Most of the time, I tried to resist the temptation from the endless stream of books and papers. It didn't help that pizza and beer were in usually in tow. She knew how to reel me in every time.
My freshman fifteen came from her. I was sure of it.
Tonight was no different. She showed up at my apartment door hauling pastries, Corona and a smile. I took the bribe like a dirty officer, having planned on watching a movie I borrowed from a guy in my art class after I finished my work anyway.
While I borrowed the movie, I had to decline his offer of coming over to watch it with me. He's nice enough, but the last thing I wanted was to be involved with a boy I knew nothing about, even after spending three-fourths a semester with him. My experience with my last boyfriend left me wary, but, at least I found out where all my underwear had disappeared to.
I sighed, finding I wasn't too interested in zombies. I tipped the Corona back on my lips. The slightly warm liquid made me shiver, but I wasn't the one to waste a good beer so I drank it, although not enjoying it since it had warmed from its chilled state.
A tiny fleck of something flew past. I looked over, finding Jessica staring with a slight smirk while she placed a few pieces of microwave popcorn in her mouth. She looked rather comfortable in her sweatpants and grungy UCLA long-sleeve shirt with her light hair sitting atop her head.
"How dare you," I said jokingly.
"You seem distant."
I shrugged. "I'm sorry. I'm just a little tired."
"Do you want me to head on home?"
"No, it's okay. I'll be fine."
A kernel hit my nose.
"Now you're just being annoying," I mumbled, picking up the intruding popcorn to eat it. Beer, pastries and popcorn? I would be sick later.
She laughed, and it was contagious.
When the gore was over, Jessica stood up and carried her two Corona bottles and crinkled popcorn bag into the kitchen.
Even though I was ready for her to leave, I felt bad she had to go back to her apartment. "Are you sure you don't want to spend the night?" I asked as she grabbed her jacket and headed to the front door.
"Nah, I'll be okay. Hopefully Lauren's boy toy has already left."
"Well, if you want to come back over just text me or something and I'll come open the door for you."
"Thanks. I'll talk to you tomorrow."
I locked the door behind her, cleaned up the kitchen and put the throw pillows back on the couch in an orderly fashion. I sighed at the welcoming sight of my huge poster bed that took up almost the entire space. I barely had a place for my folded clothes, but I slept well. I was willing to make the sacrifice for the apartment.
It was not swanky or even remotely upscale, but the rent was reasonable, the landlord paid the utility bill and there was a washer and dryer downstairs. There are only a couple of downfalls to this place; it was on the second floor, which meant I had to carry heavy groceries up then go back down.
I pulled off my socks and jeans and slipped underneath the cold sheets then pulled my fluffy comforter to my nose to settle in. It didn't take me long to find the edge of that serene darkness. Most nights my head was a super highway of ideas, books, papers, or work, but tonight it was quiet.
Music started to blare from the apartment next to me, and I groaned in disgust, pulling the covers over my head. Should I smother myself under my pillow now or later? There's the second downfall. Him. It was a usual sign that my neighbor, Jacob, and his flavor of the night were about to start making a lot of noise. If he wasn't such a narcissist (and man whore) then he would be a decent guy because he is actually quite nice.
I had bumped into him on the stairs right after I moved in and he introduced himself. At the time, I thought he was really cute; his long black hair hung down on his shoulders, his dark skin and those big brown eyes. His reputation, which I had heard around campus, followed right behind him. What a waste of usable man space.
I tossed under my comforter as I digested the sounds against my will, listening to the horrid symphony that was ringing through the walls. All of his "dates" did seem to have one thing in common; they were really religious in the bedroom. Praise God!
I buried my head under the pillow.
Somehow, it managed to go on for hours and when three a.m. rolled around I became fed up. I slung the covers off and stomped across the floor to the wall exhausted and pissed off. My fist met the drywall a few times with a little more force than necessary in my hope that he would get the point.
His muffled yell of "sorry" came through the wall a few seconds later and I rolled my eyes as I crawled back in the bed, pulling my comforter up to my nose and curling up into a warm ball. I almost expected to hear the noise continue from him but nothing else came. The only thing assaulting my ears was the music. Music is something that I can deal with, but people having sex? I'll pass.
|. . . : . . .|
An incessant noise rang through-out my bedroom. My hand stumbled around in search for snooze. I finally slapped the right button and it ceased. I groaned heavily and rubbed my eyes with my fingertips then roughly stroked my cheeks with my palms. The friction helped somewhat and I opened my eyes to look at the time on my alarm clock.
Seven o'clock. The usual.
I moaned, stretching my legs and pushing my arms over my head. A refreshing burn crept through my body. I sat up, adjusted my eyes to the light and took a moment to myself before I devoted the rest of the day to people I didn't know.
A sweet girl, who was in my Intro to Computers class, Angela Weber, suggested I come to work with her at a local book-slash-cafe which was relatively close to campus. She said the hiring process is tedious but I was sure to get a position there given I had "useful intelligence and an infinite love of books".
Two weeks later, I was hired. So, I worked there during the day when I didn't have classes and some nights were given to Maguuma Stade Pub, a tiny hole in the wall bar and grill that attracted a lot of local attention. I worked there for the money, not necessarily because I enjoyed it. Waitressing at Maguuma was the job that paid the bills while The Book Store was my retreat away from school and rigorous homework. Not to mention, I got an employee discount.
I made the bed, took a shower and eyed my attire in the full-length closet mirror. Satisfied with my selection, I pulled the twenty dollar bill from the jeans I wore yesterday, then exited to the kitchen to grab the keys to my bike. I tucked my helmet underneath my arm.
Wind whipped through the breezeway, nearly slamming my door shut as soon as I exit.
"Bella," a familiar voice called.
I turned to see Jacob walking out of his apartment in a pair of faded denim – nothing else. I'll admit it was hard to not look at his abs.
"Hey, Jake," I said as I turned the locks over with my key.
"Hey. I just wanted to apologize for last night and the, ya know, noise. They can't really help it sometimes."
"It's no big deal," I lied. "It's not the first time it's happened."
He grinned. "I'm sorry for those times, too. I'm probably not an easy guy to live next to."
"Well, it's just I was tired last night and I can get irritated when I am awake too long," I said pulling out the kindness in my heart to avoid from stomping on his bare feet with my boot.
I stepped past him and made for the stairs, not really in the mood to have the conversation of his sex life and me listening to it through the walls.
"How about I make it up to you tonight?" he asked, following.
"Um, I'm not really sure Jake, I have to work at Maguuma tonight and probably won't be home until late. I'm usually pretty tired when I get home."
"How about tomorrow night?" He skipped down the stairs to stop me from going any further. I put my free arm out in front of me as a reaction and my fingertips came to rest on his cool, bare chest. He looked down at my hand placement then looked up at me. His eyes were dark, curious.
I quickly removed my fingers from him as he smirked.
"What did you have in mind exactly?" I asked.
"Well, we could watch a movie and have dinner, if you'd like. I've been told I make a mean Thai pasta. I'll even eighty-nine the meat for you."
I sighed and quirked an eyebrow. "What movie?"
"Ladies pick," he said and grinned wider. "So how about it? Will you let me make it up to you?"
"On one condition," I said and held up a finger.
"Put some clothes on when I come over. It's disgusting." I moved around him and continued my descent.
"So I'll see you tomorrow night?" he called out.
I held up a hand to gesture that he would and swung a leg over the seat of my yellow Suzuki. After placing the helmet on my head, I started it up, listening to the harsh hum. I had always wanted a motorcycle, but was never allotted a chance to own one since had I lived in one of the rainiest regions in the United States. Not to mention, my father, a police chief in a small town, but nevertheless a police chief, insisted that motorcycles were nothing but an accident waiting to happen.
I respectfully informed him on my decision to buy one when I made the move to LA. My argument was that they are relatively not that expensive and it's easier to park a bike than it is to park a car in this town. He tried to talk me out of it, worrying himself with the bad reputation and not the positives that I insisted he consider.
Regardless of how much he pursued me on my decision there was nothing he could do about it. It was my money that I had saved up working almost every day after school my junior and senior year of high school. I had planned to keep saving but then again, I had never planned to attend UCLA until last November.
It was always part of the plan to attend the University of Washington but after some shit with my mom and her nonsense arose, I decided that I had to get away from that unbearable woman and the University of Washington was way too close.
I spent the morning stocking and categorizing until we opened then I tended to one of the registers while telling Angela about Jessica's incident with Lauren last night, not that it was anything new, then filled her in on Jake's offer. She seemed rather shocked that I agreed to go to his apartment. She knew Jake Black and his reputation with the girls on campus.
"So what is this, Bella?" she asked. "Finally giving in to the charms of Jake Black, are we?"
"Hell no," I said quietly. "He mentioned food, so how could I refuse?"
She chuckled. "I have a feeling that that's not the only thing you will be eating."
"Sorry but sausage is not on my menu… at least not his sausage," I retorted and she laughed a little louder than appropriate. I gave our boss, Mrs. Williams, an apologetic glance after she glanced up from her inventory sheet down the counter. Angela covered her mouth and pushed on her glasses when a customer approached the registers. After she rang them up she turned to me again.
"You know he's going to try something, right? I don't think there has been a girl that has exchanged words with him that hasn't ended up walking funny the next day."
"I won't even let it get that far," I said. "If things are starting to go in that direction, I'll leave, simple as that."
"If you're able to."
"Why do you say that?"
"It's just that he's very different from the other guys at school, not to mention gorgeous. The hair, the eyes, his voice." She paused for a moment, staring at the ceiling. "I mean who wouldn't want to climb on that?"
"Me, that's who. Do you?" I asked raising my eyebrows at the new revelation that came to me. The way she sighed while saying his features made me question if her disgust was really affection.
"Sometimes, I hope that he'll ask me out but I only have to remind myself that he's been with well over fifty girls, if not a hundred, then I'm turned off to the idea."
"Exactly. You should come stay with me for a few days and you'll put the whole idea of getting with him out of your head. The boy is a dog. I would never extend my relationship with him beyond being neighbors. If he needs to borrow a cup of sugar, I'll be glad to help out, but there is no way I'd would sleep with him."
Angela only smiled and nodded, seeming to be convinced of my declaration.
After my shift was over, I said good-bye to Angela, promising to call her after I left Jake's place tomorrow and give her the four-one-one on what happened. I made my way to Maguuma, which only took a few minutes then settled into a parking spot in front once I was there.
I was an hour early for my shift, so I shuffled inside and placed my helmet in the back office. The dining room of Maguuma was fun, to say the least, if not odd. The walls were dark green with red glass lamps hanging down from the ceiling, setting the lighting to a perfect glow. The rich, dark wooden tables were bare with simple condiments adorning the tops; salt, pepper and sugar. The tile was a dark gray, and it was real, none of that slick linoleum stuff.
I took a seat at a table and was approached by Siobhan, whose beauty was rivaled by her furious mouth. She didn't take shit from anybody and was often referred to as "The Bitch" by regulars. She was, however, very entertaining and could keep even the most collected person on their toes.
She pushed her blond bob behind her ears, not offering anything else other than a quick, "Hey, what do you want?" Her voice had a slight twang to it, but I couldn't pin point what her heritage was exactly.
I ordered my usual house salad with oil and vinegar on the side and a glass of tea with lemon. She brought it to me quickly and I sipped from my straw excitedly, quenching my parched throat that had been aching all day.
I savored the taste of the salad as much as I could but ended up eating it very quickly, not nearly slow enough to fill up the hour before my shift started. I drew idly on the receipt that Siobhan brought to me for forty-five minutes until it was time to don the black apron. My salad was a dollar and change, so I left Siobhan a five dollar bill, the exact coinage, and told her to keep the rest.
The night went by gracefully. Regulars came in and sat in my four table section and left quickly after eating. Tickets were up in the fifties, which was odd for a Thursday night but I didn't complain. People that I had waited on before usually tipped more than twenty percent. I'd like to think it was my charismatic personality. The turn time was great, and one hundred and fifty dollars later I was dancing in the kitchen, shuffling my feet without picking them up and pumping my arms at my sides.
"You make some money tonight, Swan?" Alistair, one of the cooks, asked me.
"Yup!" I continued to victory dance across the tile to the clank of last minute orders on the grill.
"It's oddly busy," Siobhan added, "for a Thursday."
"Bella," Bree said from the entrance of the kitchen, "I cleared off table five and I sat you again… and you're welcome."
"Thanks," I said. Usually when Bree said something like that it meant she placed some some good-looking guy in our section.
I pulled my food from expo and took it to a table where an older couple sat, staring at each other and holding hands amidst their drinks and condiments. I sat their food down, warning them that it was hot and left them after they said they didn't need anything else.
I turned to table five and was stopped when my gaze found that of a blonde man with intense blue eyes. The color was so strong, I wouldn't be surprised if they were his left-over Halloween lenses. I approached his table, feeling a little wary of his commanding presence even though he was sitting. His stare was intrusive.
I cleared my throat and tapped my pen nervously against my notepad which I had pulled from my apron. "Hey, what can I get you to drink?"
He intertwined his fingers and leaned into his elbows on the table. A low moan exited his parted lips then he said, "Surprise me."
I took him in for a second, assessing him and what he may like. His surfer-like appearance, pulled back hair and torn jeans, suggested to me that he was more of a beer man, but his grand posture, seductive stare, and worn brown leather jacket told me that he was more of a liquor man. So, I brought him a Beefeater gin and tonic. He eyed it speculatively and smirked.
"You're good." He brought the tumbler to his lips and took a sip.
"Would you like anything to eat?" I asked.
"No, thank you. Just this. I've already eaten tonight."
I smiled which was followed by a flash of heat. He seemed to notice my reaction and closed his eyes briefly then opened them again with a heavy intake of breath.
"Ma'am can we get the check?" a voice asked from behind me.
"Excuse me," I said then turned to hand the table behind me their bill. They handed me a credit card and I left to run it. When I came back through the nearly-empty restaurant, my eyes went to the table where the blonde was sitting. He was swirling his glass slowly, watching the ice clink against the sides. I handed the couple their check and credit card and wished them a great evening, then returned to his table to ask him if he wanted anything else, which was decidedly dumb since I had already asked him that a few minutes ago.
He simply shook his head and extended his hand to the seat across from him. "Would you like to sit?"
I couldn't decide if he was being sincere, or if it was a gesture that he knew I thought he was good-looking. "I can't. I'm sorry. I'll get in trouble."
"Of course. Well, in that case, could I bother you for one more?" He tapped the rim of his glass gently with his index finger.
"Sure. I'll be right back."
I turned to head back to the bar and heard him say, "Don't take too long."
I made quick work of getting him another gin and tonic and almost ran back to the table. I placed the glass in front of him and he drank the liquid in one gulp, which somehow was one of the sexiest things I had ever seen.
"So, Bella, do you always blush for strangers?" he asked staring me in the eyes.
"H-how do you know my name?" I stuttered, confused how he knew my name.
He reached across the space between us and flicked the plastic name tag that was positioned to the left of my apron.
"Oh." My blush, then, was from embarassment.
He picked up his glass. "I take that as a yes." A piece of ice slid to his mouth. His tongue came out and flicked it between his lips, sucking it briefly before allowing it to slide back down.
I didn't even know this guy's name and I wanted to be that ice. I wanted him to suck on me gently or rough, whichever he wanted.
"You're pretty," he said.
I wasn't expecting him to be straight-forward, so my response was delayed. "Thanks."
"I wouldn't mind taking you out one night."
"I don't really go out with strangers." One of the first rules I set for myself when I moved here.
"Well, I'm James," he said with a smile. "We're not exactly strangers anymore."
"It's nice to meet you."
"Believe me when I say the pleasure is all mine."
He closed his eyes as a breath escaped his mouth. I stared at him, entranced by his words and rendered speechless by the way his mouth moved when he said them. He was one of the most rustic and virile men I had ever seen. Something about him was so animalistic and predatory which turned on the box to all my nerves and begged for him to throw the switch. My pulse began to pick up as he leaned forward into his arms and pushed himself to the edge of his seat, like he felt the same way.
"How much do I owe you?" he whispered, ripping me away from the moment.
"How much do I owe you for the drinks?"
"Oh, let me print out a receipt for you." I began to step away.
"No, that's okay. Here." He produced a fifty dollar bill from his pocket, set it on the table and rose from his chair in a quick, fluid movement. "Thank you for the drinks and the conversation. Just the kind of inspiration I needed for my night." He smiled.
"I can get you some change. It's no problem."
"Don't worry about it. I'll see you soon, Bella." With those words he was gone from the table and headed toward the front door.
"Um, you're welcome. Thanks for the tip," I responded.
"What was that about?" Siobhan asked behind me when he exited through the door.
"I dunno," I said quietly.
"Girl, he wanted you. I saw it across the restaurant."
I smiled and cleaned my section quickly, wanting to get home and go to sleep. It was after eleven o'clock and while my day had been decent, it was also long.
When I finally walked in the door of my apartment I locked up and went straight to my bedroom, pulling off my clothes and climbing underneath the cool sheets. Thankfully there was nothing to keep me awake.
As I dozed off, I thought of my interaction with James while dismissing the scratching sound at the window as my imagination running away with me.