Sharon’s Note: I got really lucky with the in-law lottery. Mine are awesome, but I’ve heard other people’s horror stories. Good or bad, it’s always unnerving when you meet your significant other’s family for the first time. Having them be a master vampire probably makes it worse. Probably. Warning: Scary people acting surprisingly normally.
“This isn’t going to be awkward, is it? Me being the only one eating?” Anise shifted uncomfortably as the elevator climbed.
“Only if you make it. Joseph really wants to make this as comfortable for you as possible. He likes you.”
She ran a hand through her hair. “I can’t imagine why. Rupert seems to be of the opinion that he doesn’t like hunters.”
“I’d say it’s more that Joseph doesn’t like Rupert.” Jack flinched when he saw Anise’s expression and backpedaled. “It’s not that your boss is a bad guy, it’s just that they’re both strong personalities, and I think they rub each other the wrong way.”
“Rupert can be a little abrasive,” she admitted, then then wrapped a hand around her husband’s arm. “Thank you for putting up with his BS. I know he gave you some hell, but he only did it because he cares about me.”
Jack pulled her around so that she was facing him and placed a light kiss on her lips. “Well, we have that in common, then.”
The doors opened, and of course Joseph was standing right there. The elder vampire smiled softly. “Well, I never pictured my elevator as being particularly romantic, but I’m glad you enjoyed it.”
Jack blushed. “Sorry, sir.”
Joseph waved the apology aside. “Don’t worry, now, come with me. Dinner is ready.”
Still blushing, Anise followed the master, holding Jack’s hand. They made their way through the immaculately decorated apartment to a table by a glass wall that had an amazing view of the nightime city. She was sitting at one end with Joseph sitting opposite of her and Jack sitting between them. A man in a black suit sat a plate in front of her with a large rack of ribs.
“My favorite?” She raised an eyebrow.
The master smiled. “I had Jack help the chef create tonight’s menu. Now, I hope you don’t mind if we talk business while you eat?”
“Go ahead.” Anise stabbed a piece of roast potato with her fork.
“So, I just want to get this out of the way; I give my permission for Jack to make you a vampire.” As soon as Joseph said it, Jack let out a breath. The master vampire chuckled. “What? You thought I was going to deny you the means to be with the woman you love forever?”
“Honestly, I thought you were going to,” Anise said. Joseph raised an eyebrow, and she shrugged. “From what Jack said, you weren’t the biggest fan of us getting married.”
He shrugged. “You were an unknown quantity. At first I thought you were just an agent that Rupert was using to get to me through Jack. I thought he was tired of our arrangement. After a while I realized that your love was genuine, and I was happy for you both. Now that you’re joining our numbers, I was hoping to make you an offer.”
“Joseph-” Jack began, but the elder vampire held up a hand for silence.
“I’m just offering, there’s no consequence to turning it down,” Joseph said, and Jack relaxed. He turned back to Anise. “Your skill as a Hunter is impressive, and I was hoping that once you are turned you would consider coming to work for me?”
“What?” She raised an eyebrow.
“It would be a good position. You could work with your husband. I could even arrange for you to be his boss.”
“Wait, what?” Jack’s head snapped around to look at his boss.
Anise laughed. “No. Rupert still hasn’t made a decision whether or not he’s going to let me continue working with the group after I’ve turned. Even if he decides against it, I’m still planning on patrolling on my own, keeping up the good work.”
“Well, you could continue that good work, you’d just be doing it for me. At least that way you’d be getting paid.” Joseph folded his hands on the table and smirked. “Feel free to take your time. Think it through for a few decades. After all, you’ll have the time.”