Rainbow Snippets is a fun Facebook group where every week author’s share a bit of what they’re working on.
Today’s snippet comes from my WIP The Vampire’s Consort. Unedited.
“And what about this young man?” Hall asked, breaking into Birch’s thoughts. The vampire had reached the end of the queue of boys and now turned his attention to Birch.
“Birchwood?” Firestone asked, a look of surprised distaste passing over his dull face just before he laughed derisively. “He’s not important.”
Hall simply stared at Firestone with those unfathomable eyes until he answered.
“Athan Hall, may I present Birchwood Beverly.” Firestone’s cheeks and the tip of his nose had gone red, either from the wine or from having to lower himself to introduce a servant.
When Hall’s cool hand clasped Birch’s and shook it, a hot flush ran through the boy’s body.
“Why didn’t you introduce him with the others?” Hall asked.
“Birchwood isn’t a student here,” Firestone said in the tone one might use when speaking of body waste rather than a person with thoughts and feelings. Birch was well accustomed to it, but that didn’t mean it still didn’t hurt.
“I distinctly heard you ask him about his studies.” Hall raised an eyebrow as dark and graceful as a raven’s wing. A fanciful thought, Birch knew, but there was something about the vampire that made Birch think fanciful things. His was a dull life, and a little daydreaming helped pass the time between chores, although that kind of thing was highly discouraged by the Firestones. If Birch were caught, he’d be punished.
“Well, yes, we do teach him, but he isn’t one of my charges. That is, we aren’t paid to keep him. My predecessor found him on our doorstep.”
The vampire’s eyes widened. “Really.”
“He’s been raised here at the orphanage, but he’s considered one of the help,” Firestone said.
“And why is that?” Hall asked, those mesmerizing eyes running over Birch from head to toe and back again. Birch couldn’t help but squirm under the intense scrutiny.
“As I said, we were not paid to take him in, either by the state or by distant relatives. He works for the roof over his head.”
“Then you would not expect the same price should I decide to take him with me?” Hall’s eyes met Birch’s, and Birch’s mouth fell open, as did the headmaster’s.
“Do you mean you want Birchwood for a servant? He’s hardly efficient–”
“No, I mean to take him as my consort.”