I grip the sink edge, knuckles white, and glare at the contents of the glass vial lying beside the tap. The viscous liquid, the color of a fine bottled wine, looks so innocuous. Innocent. A random sample of blood.
There’s nothing innocent about this vial’s contents.
Every time I see it, my mouth salivates with the need for a taste. Whenever I take the vial from my pocket to caress the cool glass in my hand, a clamoring monster of desire rips through me like a fire.
Not this time.
I swipe up the tube, twist out the cork, and prepare to pour the blood away. Metal clanks against ceramic, echoing through the small bathroom, as the chain between my wrist manacles knocks the sink. A heady smell of cocoa and figs hits my nostrils. My hand falters. God, that scent.
An urgency to inhale the smell deep into my lungs, to press the glass into my lips and lick the rim, almost takes control.
Alexei. That devious vampire. He knew exactly what he was doing when he left me with this. His blood constantly tugs at me like an unfinished song. Like a broken tooth my tongue won’t leave alone.
I could wash temptation away. Watch clear water turn burgundy as the vile substance slides into the drain.
I’ve faced this trial for ten days, and the result never changes.
I’ve tried to show the vial to Flanagan. Tried to hand it over so he can smash the glass and destroy the contents. Somehow, it always returns to my hiding places. A dirty secret.