So, I'm a day late (shame on me, my own blogfest and all) but I suppose, its better late than never.
The scenes I'm posting gives a couple examples of paying it forward, almost a cause and effect thing, although, probably not in a way that most people would consider. It comes from Joanna, one of my favorite human-hating vamps with a bad attitude. She has just robbed a bank, and her "protector," the werewolf Jude has already called and warned her not to or there would be consequences. So, here's the scenes.
Her phone rang. She had bought a new one letting the old one die in the accident. She picked it up without looking at the number. “Hello?”
“Joanna, I can’t believe you. When are you going to stop acting like a child?”
“Hi, Jude. Why do you have to call and ruin my good mood?” She smiled as she flipped through another stack.
There was a short pause on his end. “You want me to ruin your good mood? Fine. You come to me and I won’t call the police with helpful information.”
“You’re bluffing.” She froze.
“Am I?” he challenged.
“You’re going to pay for this,” she snarled.
“We’ll see about that.”
“Where are you?” she sighed, putting the money back into the briefcase.
“Minneapolis. You have forty-eight hours.” The line clicked dead.
Joanna sat the phone down next to her on the bed. She clenched her fists into balls and took a deep breath. She wanted to scream and break something—mostly Jude—but the hotel room wasn’t the place. She’d wait until she was in the mountains and destroy a few trees to vent some of her frustration.
She closed the briefcase and made her way from the room to the lobby. She rang the bell at the front desk and turned to stare at the fish tank.
“Can I help you?” the night manager asked.
Joanna turned around and smiled at him. The young man, barely twenty, seemed totally immune to her charm. “I need to check out.”
“Is there a problem with your room?”
“No...” she looked down at his name tag, “Alex. There is a family emergency and I need to go.”
“Oh. Well, let me get you out of here, then,” he replied. “What’s the room number?”
“Six twenty-three.” She slid the key across the counter.
“And your name for security purposes?” He smiled politely.
His brown eyes glanced down to the monitor in front of him. “Thank you, Miss Carpenter. I hope you enjoyed your stay and have the opportunity to do so again in the future.”
Joanna nodded at him and turned for the door. The door opened as she reached for the handle and the officer waiting on the other side held it for her.
She waited until she was three blocks away before flipping her phone open and dialing Jude’s number.
“Hello?” A man’s voice came from the other end. It flowed smoothly—he was a vampire.
“Is Jude there?” she asked, keeping her tone light.
“Yes, just a moment.” She listened to him call for Jude before returning. “Is this Joanna?”
“Yes,” she answered. Her eyes narrowed.
“Jude said you would be visiting us soon. It will be nice to meet you.”
“Right.” Joanna scowled.
She waited while the phone changed hands.
“Jude, I’m going to kill you,” she hissed.
“Oh, come on. You didn’t get caught. Though, it probably would have done you some good,” he mocked.
“I barely made it out the door, you stupid mutt.” Her voice jumped an octave. She was darting through alleys now. She ducked behind a dumpster as blaring sirens came closer.
“Yeah, and if you hadn’t made it out the door, you’d just’ve jumped out a window or over a few roofs. You ain’t fooling me.”
The sun was just behind the trees when she suddenly felt the need to check around her. She scanned the river banks and stopped at the man standing by the branch with her clothes.
“Shit,” she mumbled. “How long have you been standing there?”
“Long enough.” He grinned. His voice was deep and serene. It wasn’t unpleasant like most humans’.
“You know I’m going to have to kill you now.” She smiled back, unable to resist.
He shrugged. “You’ll have that.”
Joanna studied him for a moment. His olive complexion made his hazel eyes stand out. His dark mahogany hair was shaved close on the sides of his head but strands stuck out from under his camouflage hat. His hard nose contrasted his soft, full lips. His lip and ears were pierced. He was tall and lean and carrying a rifle.
“What are you doing out here?” Joanna asked.
“You know. Hunting... enjoying the scenery.” He chuckled.
Joanna rolled her eyes and shook her head. Great! A smartass. “You think you could be a pal and turn around until I’m dressed?”
“Why? I’ve already seen it all.” Another smile tugged at his lips.
“Ugh. What ever.” She took her time swimming back to the shore, trying to appear human. When she walked out he didn’t look away. He didn’t look down either, choosing to look at her face, instead.
“Are you an angel or something?” he asked, his eyes narrowed slightly.
“Or something,” she declared. “Why do you ask?”
“You’re too god damn gorgeous to be human and I have never smelled anything as good as you come out of water.” He looked away before he finished. Joanna watched his eyes cloud and wondered what he was thinking.
Her eyebrows rose after she put her blouse on. “I think you messed that up.
He turned back, his eyes smoldered. “What do you mean?”
Joanna pursed her lips and shrugged. “I thought it was like, ‘Did it hurt when you fell from heaven?’”
They both stared at each other for a moment and then burst into laughter. Neither spoke again while Joanna finished dressing.
“So, my name is Jackson,” he offered.
“That’s when you’re supposed to say, ‘nice to meet you Jackson. My name is...”
“Is it now?” Joanna looked away.
“Or not... So, what are you doing out here?”
“That’s not really any of your business.” Her guard went up.
Jackson nodded slowly. “So, is my time up? I have a gun if you’d like...” he trailed off.
Joanna sighed. “If you leave now, I think I’ll spare you. This time.”
His face lit up. “Is that right?”
“Before I change my mind,” Joanna warned.
“Right. Well, it was nice to meet you.” He held his hand out to shake hers. She accepted reluctantly and both gasped when their skin touched. His felt like fire and she knew hers was barely warmer than the water.
He hesitated for a moment. “So, yeah. Until next time.”
“In your dreams.”
“Definitely.” He winked at her and turned away.
Alrighty! That's that. I know there's a lot of before and after, with one example of Jude calling the cops (bad, at least bad for Joanna) and the cop holding the door open for her (though that's not really a good thing, either). She ends up repaying that kindness by letting a lone hiker live later on. Not to mention, I really love that scene between Joanna and Jackson.