I could only imagine Trevor's reaction to the shock of seeing the pale, tattooed, multipierced Jagger walking alone on a darkened street. I wasn't sure if Trevor would hit him or take off running.
"Sorry," Jagger said in a cool voice. "I didn't see you coming.
"It's so dark around here," Jagger continued, shifting his feet.
"Yeah, I think the Sterlings knock out the streetlamps on purpose." Jagger laughed. "That babe you were walking with. She's your girlfriend?" he asked.
"Raven? She's my nightmare. No, she hangs out with the dude who lives in the Mansion. I've never seen you around here before," he said, scrutinizing him.
"I'm just visiting. I'm Sterling's friend."
"Friend? I didn't think he had any," he said with a laugh. "Well, you better catch him before they go to the drive-in."
"The drive-in?" Jagger asked.
"Yeah. It's built on an ancient burial ground," he whispered, as if revealing a secret. "I've heard that late at night, you can see ghosts eating popcorn."
"Burial ground?" Jagger wondered aloud. "Perfect."
"For what?" Trevor asked, confused.
"Uh...a club initiation," Jagger rambled. "But it's a very exclusive club...Maybe in the future you could join."
"Thanks anyway. Soccer takes all my free time. Besides, Sterling doesn't seem like the type to belong to a club."
"He's already a member. I just have to persuade Raven to join. Maybe I'll surprise them there," Jagger said. "Can you point me in the right direction?"
"Follow me," Jagger's new ally said. "It's on the way to the game."
As the two left together, my mouth hung open in disbelief. Jagger was planning to have a covenant ceremony tonight at the drive-in, with me as his covenant girl!
I needed a plan fast.
I took a deep breath and tried to think. If I canceled our double date, Jagger could return to my house, putting not only me but my family in danger.
I didn't have much time to find a way to keep Jagger away for good without ending up as his dinner. Why couldn't Alexander and I just enjoy a movie together? Like Kissing Coffins, which reflected my own imminent situation--a movie about the vampire Vladimir Livingston, who tried to save the innocent mortal ingenue Jenny from the depths of the darkened Underworld.
And then it hit me.
Jagger was planning to take me tonight at the drive-in? But he couldn't. Not if I was already taken by someone else first.
Chapter 18 Kissing Coffins
"It's hard, you know, without a mirror," I commented anxiously in Alexander's room as I awkwardly tried to glue my fake fangs onto my teeth. The soundtrack to Kissing Coffins was blaring in the background. "Are they straight?" I flashed him a sexy vampire smile.
"Wow!" he said, impressed. "Are you sure they are plastic?" He touched them with his fingers. "They look so real."
"Be careful. They aren't dry," I snapped. "Why are you so nervous? It's just a movie."
"But it's not. I have something to tell you. Promise you won't be mad at me."
"Okay. Does it involve another guy?"
"Yes, but not in the way you think. Jagger's still in Dullsville."
"How do you know?" he asked, shocked.
"I just saw him," I confessed.
"Outside the Mansion with Trevor."
"Trevor? That's the last person he should be talking to."
"Well, I saw Jagger the other night, too, at my house. But he warned me that if I told you, he would tell everyone about you."
"He was at your house?" he asked angrily. "Did he hurt you?"
"No," I assured him. "But he plans to, tonight, at the drive-in. Trevor told Jagger it was built on sacred ground and Jagger persuaded Trevor to show him where it was. Before, Jagger wanted me just to get even with you. Now I just think he wants me for himself--unless he is convinced that I have already been taken."
"I'll need you to convince him."
"But that means--"
"Just like Vladimir saves Jenny in the movie. It will be so romantic."
"I don't know if I can." "You have to. We have no other choice."
I gave him a reassuring kiss. "It will be okay. Trust me."
I fluffed my hair. I spun around and modeled my outfit. "How do I look?"
"I like you as a blond," he said, half distracted.
"And you look like Vladimir," I complimented him, as I smoothed his dark suit and straightened his black cape.
"You look just like Jenny," he said.
"But I want to see for myself."
I grabbed my purse off his bed, opened it, and reached inside, searching for Ruby's compact.
Alexander pulled at his stomach. "I don't feel so well."
"You're just nervous. I promise you, it will be okay."
"I really don't--"
"Wait a minute," I said, scrounging for a peppermint.
"What's that?" he asked, repulsed when I offered it to him.
"It's just a mint," I answered. "Don't they have them in Romania? It settles your stomach."
"Get it away from me," he said, refusing the mint and stepping away.
Then I smelled something odd coming from inside my purse.
I stuck my hand inside, and buried underneath my wallet and a huge wad of tissues was the cause. "Oh no! It's my garlic powder," I said, holding the plastic container toward him. The lid had opened.
"Put that away!" he said, holding his stomach.
"I'm sorry!" I said, fumbling and stepping away from him.
"Farther. Like in Utah!"
"I didn't mean to--" I apologized.
His ghost-white face grew even more gaunt with every breath he took.
I opened the attic window and threw the plastic container as hard as I could, far into the night sky.
Alexander was still stepping back from me, his breathing getting heavier.
"I'll throw my purse out, if I have to."
But he said nothing as he gasped for air.
"Jameson!" I called, but the Kissing Coffins soundtrack was playing too loudly for anyone to hear.
I ran out of the bedroom and down the attic steps. "Jameson!" I cried. "Jameson!" I didn't hear a sound as I barreled through the second floor. I flew down the grand staircase. Why did he have to live in such a big house?
I burst through the kitchen door and found Jameson putting dishes into the dishwasher.