Gabriella knew what he was asking. It was an eventuality. She would have to put him off again, but she couldn’t keep doing that. She had to make a decision. It wasn’t fair to him. Not that anything that happened to him was fair. It was her fault. Gabriella stroked his scarred neck. If she hadn’t fallen in love with him, he would never have endured this. She had to think clearly and carefully about the repercussions. She refused to cause him more pain.
Gabriella kissed him hard.
“Not now,” she said.
Max looked crestfallen as he straightened his cravat.
Gabriella took his hand.
“Let’s go inside and enjoy the party.” She gave his hand a squeeze. “We’ll talk later, in private.”
Max’s eyes lit up. With a spring in his step, he pulled her inside. She’d successively averted the sensitive subject, for now.
K.L., with his prized prince from radiology seated next to him, played the harpsichord with a huge grin on his face. His fangs bopped to the beat of “Monster Mash.”
“That’s different,” Max said.
Gabriella smiled. “Well that’s K.L.! I had no idea that harpsichord was tucked away in the attic.”
“What’s so funny?” Gabriella asked.
“While every kid whines about piano lessons, ours will complain about harpsichord homework, an instrument that hasn’t been known to man for centuries.”
Her smile melted. Their child would be different.
Max pecked her on the neck.
“That will be so kickass. I can see all the parents at the PTA meetings, waggling their eyebrows.
“Hmm? Harpsichord, did you say? Can’t say we’ve had one at a recital,” he parodied.
Gabriella hugged him and laughed in his solid chest.
I love this mortal man!
While the other vamps did “the monkey” to K.L.’s rendition of “Monster Mash,” Michael ran around the room plucking down the orange and black helium-filled balloons.
“Stop that!” Anabella yelled.
Michael screeched to a halt and handed Gabriella the orange and black balloon bouquet. “These are for you!”
Gabriella accepted his gift. She leaned over and kissed him on the forehead.
“Thank you. They’re lovely.”
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