I heard they were leaving, and cut a quick path through my friends, ignoring most of them, to say goodnight to my roommates. I was honestly surprised they came at all. And I was dancing with this adorable chick about half my size who has been petting my feathers all night the way you pet someone you’re about to enter. I arrive in time to see Jamie smash into some tall kid’s chest, bringing them both crashing to the ground. The kid ignores the impact and punches upward, connecting solidly with Jamie’s jaw. Or I think it’s solid, anyway, except that Jamie doesn’t react. Like he wasn’t even hit he brings his own hand down onto the kid’s face. He does it again, and again. The kid manages to shove Jamie off, but the wolf boy bounces off the floor, his arms turned to springs, ducks his head and smashes into the kid’s chin. The kid’s head snaps back, and Jamie does exactly what I don’t expect and closes in on the kid’s throat.
That’s so totally my cue to break it up. I rush in—three or so bouncers are coming in behind me—and drop low to put a hand on Jamie’s shoulder. A quick glance down at the random kid—gurgling as Jamie’s nose closed in over his ear, hands clawing at the wolf’s face and neck—“Jamie! Up!”—he doesn’t listen, and with my hands on his shoulder I actually feel his teeth puncture skin, and I shudder. Oh. This would be a terrible time to get an erection. “Need to,” I say, and I know I should be saying something… it doesn’t come, for a moment, then oh yeah, “Need to stop.” I add, “Stop,” even as my sight is coopted by my imagination, images of Jamie’s teeth in his neck, tasting blood on my own tongue… “Stop,” I say, more to myself this time. Really, really bad time for an erection.
Others arrive in seconds, and together we are all able to pry the wolf’s jaws apart. One bouncer—Vincent, and yes, that’s his real name—loops his meaty arms under Jamie’s, and I realize that there is no way I would be that stupid. If Jamie was eating a baby, I wouldn’t be that stupid.
Jamie whips his head around, jaws agape, and snaps them together less than an inch from Vincint’s nose. Vince grunts in alarm and loosens his grip, and Jamie tears out of it and heads straight back to the boy, bleeding on the floor. He stops above him, points one massive, lethal claw down at him and says, “Don’t fuck with my friend.” Then Vincent and two of his buddies grab him again, one to each arm and one keeping a hold on the back of his shirt. They hold him steady, though I don’t think he’s fighting anymore. Mostly he’s just staring a hole through the guy on the floor.
I find Corey maybe ten feet from the action, a huge bruise over her eye. She looks at me, defiant, innit. And just like that, I divine what happened.
I keep my motions deliberate as, in full view of everyone, I step up to the boy on the floor. At second glance, he’s not bleeding nearly as bad as he should have been. I thought the wolf boy had ripped his throat out, but it was only a love-bite. Delicious red flows from four small punctures, but none of them are serious. I squat down next to him. He takes a moment to notice me, and jumps when he does.
“You all right?” I ask. The crowd around us is quiet, but I still speak up to be heard over the music.
“No!” he bleeds petulantly. “That fucking asshole fucking tackled me!”
I glance at Jamie, who ignores me completely and continues flaying the kid slowly with his eyes. “Who, that guy?”
“Was that before or after you punched the girl?”
I count: One. Two. Then click. His eyes widen. “You gotta be fucking kidding me.”
I shake my head. “I should probably explain,” I say, offering him a hand. He regards it suspiciously for a moment, then takes it. I hoist him to his feet. “We should probably call CitySec and have wolf boy here arrested for dangerous stuff.” I pause, wait for him to agree.
“Fuckin’ A right you should! This is a god damned disgrace of a club. Letting fucking mod freaks in here. What the fuck did you think was gonna happen?”
“Yesssss,” I drawl, just long enough to get him to look at my toothy muzzle. “Those mod freaks sssssure are a pain, ain’t they?”
His mouth works, but his throat doesn’t. Ha.
“Well. Anyway, my point is, I’m not calling City Security on him. Go ahead. Ask me why.”
I must admit to a certain pedantic weakness: I really enjoy watching people figure out things that I already know. All it usually takes is context clues. Like, for instance, the two bouncers standing just behind me, arms crossed and staring at the kid. They don’t need to know what he did wrong to have picked up on my irritation. My feathers stand up when I get annoyed. I can’t help it. So I enjoy watching his eyes widen even more as he realizes that I am probably just a hair more important in this particular club than his rather unidirectional sense of justice.
“Aren’t you going to ask me why?”
“Why?” It sounded forced. I smiled pleasantly.
“Because you hit my friend first. If I called CitySec on Mister Woofie I’d have to call them on you.” And now, I wait. For a minor offense like this, the kid would probably get a very minor sentence, like a couple of hours in confinement, then a fine, and a warning, and a stamp on his record detailing that he got a stamp on his record. Of course, that assumes that he doesn’t already have a stamp. If he does, then he’ll be spending a little more than a few hours in lockup. And wouldn’t you know it, the kid just stares at me, holding his throat, all sorts of fire in his face, and it’s really all I can do to keep from jumping him right there and taking a long, slow lick at his neck wounds.