The ding of my phone woke me up, and I glanced at my clock. Two-thirty-eight in the morning. That meant my dumb ass son and his friends had been out partying again, and he was either texting me to tell me he was still in love with his hand-to-hand combat instructor who didn't even know he existed. Or he was going to be sending me cat videos for the next twenty minutes until he finally passed out.
Rosses r red
Violets r blue
So r my balls
Because of you
Definitely not my son. I glanced at the top bar and nearly dropped my phone. Young. One of my son's best friends. His delicious, way-too-young-for-me friend.
He'd stolen my number from Larrin's phone one terrible, terrible, I'm-going-to-hell day. Now the guy wouldn't stop texting me. And almost always while he was drunk. Or high.
I'd never admit to a soul, but I got a happy little zing to my insides every time he did. Young Blackburn lived to torture me with innuendo. I had no doubt the man was just a giant flirt that talked to everyone that way and more often than not, probably messed with me to mess with Larrin, but I couldn't deny how good it felt to have the attention of someone so incredibly beautiful.
Young was a gorgeous, built, cocky, blond god of a man who smirked like the devil––or how I assume the devil would smirk––and made me crave like I'd never craved before. I was both terrified and excited me every time I was around the guy. And I struggled with keeping my feelings and my hands to myself every time he talked to me.
Me: Drink some water and go to bed.
I couldn't help wondering who else he'd been texting tonight, not liking the idea that it might be some other man or men. And then hating myself for being so pathetic and jealous over a man who could never be mine anyway.
Young: Water won't help. Only ur love will do. I like when it face does things. Pretty. Ur son tried to wow me how balls. I didn't look. I'd look at urs tho.
I hated trying to read drunk text. And why did Young talk about balls so much?
Me: Where is Cast or Martigan?
I had to wait about four minutes and a lot of the little dots appearing and disappearing on the screen.
Young: Martin yelled at me.
Young: Why can't I joust type Marti(
Young: I'm toning to marry u and be Larrinf stepdad.
Young: I'm going to select these all so idndmobtnknownhow ensnares to be.
Young: delete them all
What the fuck was that boy doing?
Immortals could definitely get drunk. And they did often, but the effects usually wore off pretty quickly. Usually someone had to get pretty creative to make the effects last longer than about a half an hour. Unfortunately, that meant stupid kids doing stupid stuff at parties.
Sighing, I dialed Young's number, for some inexplicable reason needing to make sure the idiot hadn't killed himself. I steadfastly ignored the way my throat knotted and my chest tightened at the idea of something happening to the gorgeous man who was one of my son's closest friends!
I just didn't want my son to have to go through the heartbreak of losing someone that close to him. It had nothing to do with the way Young first infiltrated my body's cravings by being so fucking sexy, and second my mind by being daring and bold. Always funny and almost never serious. For making me want to possess someone I had no business having.
Young Blackburn was too young, too beautiful and far too full of life for someone like me. And this strange obsession I'd had with him since my son brought him to the house for the first time two years ago when the straight-off-the-presses eighteen-year-old had strutted through my living room, going to my kitchen without even a glance in my direction while Larrin came in behind him, carrying two bags worth of art supplies.
There was a horrifying moment that I'd worried that I'd been perving on my son's boyfriend, but found out soon enough that the too-young-for-me, but still legal––thank God––hottie was just one of his project partners in science.
And that was how the group found each other. They'd bonded over being immortal in a human world and formed something terrifying, and if I'm being honest, pretty amazing.
Briec, Cast and Martigan had showed up later that evening, and I'd been fighting the invasion of my house ever since.
Since they'd all gone off to Terra Mortis to train, the house suddenly seemed like too much space for one person and I'd contemplated more than once just moving to Terra Mortis.
"Hello?" Young's sexy voice answered, making me breathe in a sigh of relief.
"Where are you? Are you okay?" I growled, hating that my body had reacted just from his voice coming over the line.
"Shaw! My Shawberry! Oops!" His voice sounded further away for a second and then he was back on. "I a'most dropped ya in da ocean."
Shit! He was by the water? Or on it? The idiot was going to fall in and drown.
"Where are you, Young? Who's with you?" I demanded, throwing my legs over the side of the bed and wishing Terra Mortis was a little closer to Houston where I called home.
"I'm onna dock. Briec will be right back. She went ta da little bitches room," he slurred into the phone, before he and another deep voice started laughing uncontrollably in the background.
My body flushed with jealousy, and I stood quickly, needing to walk off the need I had to go straight to Terra Mortis and rip him away from whatever man was sitting next to him, enjoying his company when I was stuck here, wishing I could.
Wait! Where the fuck did that come from? I couldn't have him! I couldn't.
"I meaned…meant…wait. What did I meant?" He asked whoever it was beside him.
"I think you meant witch's." I refused to acknowledge the relief that went through me when I heard Cast's voice. Cast might be big and gorgeous, but of all the times that group had invaded my space over the last couple years, I'd never seen even a remote spark between Young and Cast. And I was embarrassed to admit even to myself that I'd looked.
"What witches? The Sandserson sissers? Thas a fuckin' tongue twisser." Young tried a few more times to get it right and then sighed dramatically. "Is almost Halloween. We need to watch Hocus Pocus! Hocus pocus, allama chockus…wit your big cock."
Snorting out a laugh, I tried covering it with a cough. I was a four hundred, twenty-four-year-old gargoyle. I shouldn't be laughing at drunk twenty-year-olds who shouldn't be drinking yet but were clearly wasted and lounging too close to the sea.
"Is Larrin with you guys?" There you go Shaw. Now you act like a responsible parent.
"Shawberry! You want to choke us?" Young asked, making me cough for a completely different reason.
Don't you dare imagine it, Shaw! Don't you dare! Too late. I groaned as my cock filled thinking about Young on his knees in front of me as I shoved my dick down his throat, making him gag.
I palmed my cock, ashamed at myself for being so turned on by a voice and a suggestion of a far too drunk twenty-year-old. Fuck! I was that perverted old man that checked out his kid's friends.
Too bad that thought did nothing to curb my need. Especially when Young groaned into the phone, my mind turning what was probably just a normal groan of annoyance, exhaustion, or just about anything else a groan could be into something sexual because it came from the throat of the young gorgeous vampire with pretty green eyes and golden blond hair with the sexiest fucking body I'd ever seen.
"Who ya talkin' to, Young?" I heard Briec say thankfully dousing some of the heat in my pants when I remembered there were other people with Young and my son might be one of them.
"Shawberry," Young said on a sigh, almost sounding wistful.
Or maybe that was my wishful thinking.
"Oh! Gib me da phone! I need ta talk ta him," Briec said a little too loud.
"No!" Young yelled, practically deafening me. "He's mine."
My wings tingled just below the surface of the skin of my back, wanting to break free. Young had just called me his. Logically I knew nothing could come of it, but I felt those words with my whole body. I was desperate for them to be true.
I needed to hang up. I needed to get some control of myself. One man should not be affecting my whole being the way that he was. But I still didn't know if my son was with them, being drunken morons who were too close to the ocean for their own good.
Maybe I should call that instructor that my son was so obsessed with. Kross. Kross would go shoo them away from the danger.
"Hellooo Larri-bear's hands'm dad! I won da phone, so I won you! Congrau…congrab…can I grab yer lations?" Briec yelled, and I wondered how nobody had already caught them and dragged them back inside.
"You give 'em back right now! You man-whore…wait. You womanizer," I heard Young growl-yell. "Fuck! What 'm I tryna say?"
"Where dya get dat? Yer drunk 'nough. I'm not carryin' ya to da healer 'gain ta get yer somach pump…pump…pumped. Is Cas turn."
Stomach pumped? What the fuck?
"Briec!" I yelled, suddenly getting very nervous. "Who are you talking to? Is Young getting sick?"
"No, das da prob'm. He has ta trow up. When he drinks was-her-face's moonshine, he drinks too, too much an' has ta get his somach pump." She was still talking entirely too loud, but at least I could mostly understand it. "He be fine."
"Where's Larrin?" I tried one more time, pinching the bridge of my nose with my fingers.
"Marti took his glasses 'way so he can't write 'nymore love letters ta Kross. Which is jus' mean. He desn't get ta boss us. If we wanna con Larri-bear inta writing his feelin's down so we can send it ta Kross, who des Marti think he is ruinin' it?"
I heard retching in the background and Briec and Cast yelled in triumph.
"That a boy, Young!" Cast's words were slightly less slurred than the other two. "Karney, get a picture fer me, please. I don know where ma phone is."
"I have it, remember?" I heard Karney's sweet voice reply. "You handed it to me so you wouldn't drop it earlier.
"I did! Yer so awesome, Karney." I could hear the kid blush from Cast's praise.
I'd only been around him a few times since he was brand new to the group, but he was always trying to fade into the background and blushed all the way to his toes anytime someone drew attention to him.
"Young desn't need his somach pumped!" Briec yelled into the phone, making me cringe. "Hiss feedin' da fishish…fishish. Da fishish!"
"Can I talk to Karney, please?" I sighed, hoping he wasn't as drunk as the others.
"Hello," Karney said after a noisy minute that was accompanied by the sound of Young turning himself inside out.
"Hey. Do you think you can get those three back to the rooms before one of them falls in the ocean and dies?"
"Hey, Cast, do you think you can carry Young back to his room? I'll lead Briec," the kid asked his roommate as answer to my question.
"Yep!" Cast said, eagerly, and then there was a bit of rustling and a groan. "Don' throw-up on me, Young."
Sighing in relief, I stopped pacing the floor and sat back down on my bed. "Thanks Karney. Cast is usually Young and Briec's babysitter. I'm sorry you got conned into it."
"It was my idea," he said, still quiet. "Cast has been pretty stressed lately. I thought it would be nice for him to get a night off of babysitting duty, so I told him I'd watch them all. Marigan was helping me, but Larrin was getting pretty insistant on those love-letters and Marti said he didn't want to hear the whining for the next week about how embarrassed he was, so he took him up to his room and stole his glasses while he was in the shower."
"Are you going to be okay with those three? You kind of have your hands full."
He giggled. "Yeah. My mom's a water nymph. I can persuade if necessary."
"Nice," I said, meaning it. Water nymph children were almost exclusively female unless they mated with an immortal that was from an exclusively male race, like demons, pheonixes cintars or antavros. "I'm glad they have you, Kar. They definitely need a calming presence."
"Thanks," he answered simply, and I just knew he was blushing adorably again. "I'll get them in bed, I promise."
When we hung up, I sighed, going back over the text messages Young sent me, and shaking my head. They didn't make a bit of sense, but I found them oddly endearing.
I shouldn't because I was a grown-ass man and over four-hundred years too old to find anything even remotely cute about under-aged kids drinking and doing dumb shit, but it was what it was.
And I was starting to worry about my ever-growing obsession with my son's close friend.