By Melissa L. Webb
The coffee canister rocked on the shelf, threatening to topple forward. It swayed near the edge as if in slow motion. Jodie frowned before quickly stopping it from plummeting to its doom. She stared down at the plastic canister in her hands. This wasn’t the one she wanted.
“Wow, awesome catch,” a husky voice whispered from behind her.
She turned slightly and looked behind her. A guy stood there, watching her through shaggy blond bangs. She smiled. “Thanks,” she told him, turning back to her coffee decision.
“That’s an excellent coffee you have there,” he told her, stepping closer.
“I’ve never tried it before. I usually just get the cheap stuff.”
The guy shook his head in mock horror. “That stuff’s not coffee. It’s battery acid.” He reached over and took the canister from her hand. “This is the only way to go,” he said and shook the container slightly.
Jodie sighed. “I don’t know. I don’t even really like coffee. It’s just a habit I can’t seem to shake.”
The guy shook his hair out of his eyes, flashing her a brilliant white smile. “You’d like this. I guarantee it.” He looked down at her with a question in his green eyes. “Especially if I were to make it for you.”
“That’s very kind of you, but I can’t,” she told him, turning around and heading down the aisle.
“Wait,” he called after her. “I’d really like to get to know you. Just one cup of coffee is all I’m asking. We’ll see where it goes from there.”
She looked back over her shoulder. “I’m sorry. I’m not interested in getting involved with someone right now,” she said, turning the corner and heading for the front of the store.
The last thing she needed right now was a new boyfriend. If she got involved, it would end messy. It always did. This was the time for her to focus on herself and figure out where she was heading. She didn’t need a guy to distract her from that.
Jodie hurried to the checkout and got in line. Watching the customer in front of her, she sat her purchases on the conveyer belt.
“Look, I think we got off on the wrong foot.”
She turned around to find the guy behind her once again.
The guy ran a hand through his mane of hair. “I’m Quinn and I think you’re very beautiful.” He smiled down at her. “I would love to have a cup of coffee with you. If you feel uncomfortable about going back to my place, I know this great coffee shop down the street. They only serve the good stuff there.”
Jodie shook her head. “I’m sorry. Like I said before, I’m not interested. Thank you for the offer though. I’m flattered.”
Quinn stood there for a moment. “Are you sure?” he finally asked.
“I’m very sure.”
“Okay. Can’t blame a guy for trying,” he told her with a sheepish smile.
Jodie returned the smile. “No, I guess not.”
“Well, I guess I’ll see you around,” he said, waving slightly before turning.
She watched him walk away before going back to her groceries. She was somewhat sad she had to say no. He had seemed like a nice guy. She would’ve had fun getting to know him. With a sigh, she paid for her groceries and headed out of the store.
She turned and walked around the side of the building, heading back to where she had parked her car. She reached in the pocket of her jeans while shifting the grocery bag to the other arm. Pulling out her keys, she slipped them into the driver’s side door and opened the car. She slipped the groceries over her seat and into the back.
“I can’t believe you don’t want to go out with me.”
She whirled around fast, coming face to face with Quinn. “What do you want from me?” she asked him.
“I want you to say yes!”
Jodie backed up, putting more distance between them. “I told you, Quinn. No, I don’t want to.”
“You’re kidding yourself, sweetheart,” he spoke as he took a step forward, pinning her against the car. “Nobody tell me no. Nobody turns me down.”
Jodie pushed back against him. “Stop it! Please, don’t do this. You don’t want to do this.”
Quinn pushed his body tighter against hers. “Oh, but I do. I want you, baby, and I won’t take no for an answer,” he cooed down at her, his voice as smooth as black oil.
She squirmed against him, trying to push him back. Her hands flew to his face, clawing frantically.
Quinn drew back slightly, pushing her hands out of his face. He looked down at her hands and at the blood that had come off him. “You scratched me. You ruined my face, bitch,” he snarled at her.
Jodie looked down at her hands and then back up at his face, feeling her panic rise. “Please. Don’t. Leave me alone,” she pleaded.
He grinned at her while the blood ran down his face. “You’re going to get it now. You stupid bitch!” he yelled as he slammed her head back against the car.
Jodie’s vision swam as her head bounced back up. She felt the darkness close in on her. “I didn’t want this,” she muttered thickly. “I didn’t want for this to happen. I tried.” She looked up at Quinn. “You should have just stayed away.”
“Well, it’s too late for that, baby,” he said, pinning her body against the car again. “You’re mine now.”
“No,” Jodie said, shaking her head. “You’re mine.” Her eyes turned black as she grabbed him by his collar and pulled him closer.
He screamed as he watched her eyes. “What are you doing?” he whispered.
She looked at him, fire in her dark eyes. “I didn’t want this. I’ve tried to stop, but you brought this on yourself,” she hissed as her fangs grew. “This is better than coffee anyway.” She brought him close and let her fangs sink deep inside his flesh.
© 2010 Melissa L. Webb