It had been years since he had tasted sweet tea. That cold, crisp drink near dancing upon his tongue in a colourful bloom of flavours he had almost forgotten. Yet with every sip he found those memories of the long distant past near plaguing his mind once more. Those things he had forgotten, those people he had tried to forget and that goddamn war that had never truly ended for him. Wyatt, in the least, made....tolerable company. The other vampire was mild in nature at best, hardly a threat, despite this being his very territory. Darcy seeing little challenge in the man and by that notion alone his own more.....volatile nature seemed soothed. Still- the sooner they were gone from this place the better. Darcy unable to decide whether or not he ached to embrace that South he missed so desperately- or flee from it entirely. That complex cavalcade of emotions gnawing somewhere within him in that fucking annoying fashion emotions so often did. Maybe that was why he so rarely allowed himself to feel them. That damn tea having caught him off guard. His ears strained agianst the brief silence once more, Darcy listening intently for the sounds of his mate as Wyatt and himself reclined with ease within that parlour, the sound of Risque's heels so at last giving away the notion the vampiric woman was returning. The Southern vampire was near trained to respond to that very sound of stilettos on the floor. Risque and Mary-Beth appeared within that doorway a moment later, Darcy quick to allow his gaze to rove over his beloved if only to assure himself she remained in the pristine condition in which he had left her. Those possessive tendencies, already so potent, had reached a seemingly new level of intensity in the wake of having take Risque for his mate. Darcy eyeing Mary-Beth with a near predatory disdain. How he loathed anyone to displease his beloved in any sense. His own discord at being within the South only furthering his poor mood this evening. The vampire entirely willing to flee that plantation in favour of that long drive back to the hotel.
Mary-Beth, however, seemed to possess other ideas. Her shrill, southern twang rose readily then, louder than it need be, insisting they stayed for supper despite her and Risque's business having been concluded. Darcy struggled to keep that look of disgruntlement from his features. Mary-Beth seizing upon that brief flicker upon his face like a rabid poodle with those further invitations. Darcy's jaw set firmly once more, that irritation clear and yet those...southern mannerisms clung more potently to him this evening. The vampire attempting to insist they need be on their way- even if that decision was hardly his own to make. His mismatched gaze shifted toward Risque then, the vampiric Queen appearing decidedly bored with the entire affair as she declared herself to be on the fence over the matter. Mary-Beth, to her own fault, seemingly content to ignore Risque for now. That delicate interplay of dominance between both vampiric women was hardly missed. Wyatt, perhaps, the only being in the room oblivious to it. That thin tendril of tension that existed between those two coven leaders readily palpable. At least to Darcy. Mary-Beth's efforts to ignore his mate another subtle play to establish her own dominance- one furthered by those near cutting words thrown at himself with that declaration he was boring. Wyatt urgered to agree. The damn fool nodded like a puppet on a string. Darcy's own gaze narrowed once more, a faint growl threatening to rise within his throat before Risque suddenly seemed to straighten. That hellish Queen so seemingly having taken offense ...on his behalf. Darcy was unable to prevent that flicker of surprise finding his features and yet....how satisfying it was. The very notion that Risque cared prompting that simper to his lips and only further solidifying his utter devotion toward her. He had always known she loved him. This was just further proof of it. Darcy practically inclined to purr with pleasure at the warning that snapped from her lips and toward Mary-Beth. The Southern Belle appeared momentarily taken aback by Risques forceful intent. The tension within the room seeming to rise once more as was often the way with their kind. Vampires, after all, so rarely played well with one another. That territorialism decidedly hard to dispense.
Risque, seizing upon that tenous moment, demanded exclusivity and rebranding rights. Just what she was talking about Darcy hardly knew, his gaze shifting briefly to that bottle within her hand and yet it was hardly his place to question her business discussions here and now. Later, if it pleased her, she would surely inform him. That curisority tugged at his mind all the same as Mary-Beth again attempted to seize some tendril of control from Risques clutches. Her continued attempts to have them stay for supper, he knew, little more than a ruse to prolong their time here and further her own business goals. Mary-Beth, given the chance, would have them sleep at the Plantation if only to further impose her 'hospitality'. Darcy nothing if not determined to be back in that hotel room when the sun rose. That damn supper, however, seemed unavoidable. Mary-Beth taking his own lack of no as a distinct yes before rounding upon Wyatt. Risque taking that opportunity to glide smoothly towards him then. Darcy's attention falling upon his lover both instantly and attentively. Mary-Beth's threat of a 'noisy fuss' distinctly unappealing to him in turn when her laugh was shrill enough as it was.
"Naw, I dun wanna 'ear 'er make a damn fuss. As for da menu 'hough, I gotta pretty good idea what's on it and Darlin, I dun reckon yar gunna like it."
It had been years since he had enjoyed those Southern suppers and yet he was near distinctly assured that menu had hardly changed in all that time. Still, they could surely sit through it at the risk of avoiding the 'noisy fuss' as Risque suggested. That sudden mention of moonshine however, readily seemed to ensnare his attention once more, Darcy's gaze shifting from that glorious, hypnotic blue of Risques own to that bottle within her hand.
That singular word was uttered with no lack of Southern twang. Darcy eyeing that bottle incredulously then. He'd been making his own Moonshine for years, that drink rare outside the South and hardly to the taste of most. Darcy himself selling only the occasional case to a small and specific set of clientele he'd had for years. Marketing that drink in the City would be no easy task even with his contacts. The ever business-minded vampire mentally turning that proposition about within his own mind. Darcy's lips parted, the vampire inclined to ask after further details off that business pursuit before Mary-Beth seemed to fixate upon him once more, her hands resting on her waist as she eyed him. What's wrong? You can't move a lil 'shine, Blackjack? An abrupt snort found its way from within him near instantly. Her goading words met with his own. Darcy's patience wearing precariously thin.
"Oh, I can move 'Shine, but I can't move shit."
You got something to say 'bout my 'shine, Blackjack?
"Yar I gotta sumthin' ta say. Yar been making 'shine out 'ere fa years and yar ain't never tried ta sell it through Syn 'efore dis. Why yar sellin' dis one? What's in it?"
What's in it ain't your concern, Sugar. Maybe Risque will tell you, if she feels like it. You still work for your mate don't you? She still pays you. She's still your boss.
"Im gettin' mighty tired of yar implying dat..."
The sound of his name of Wyatt's lips prompted his own gaze to snap sideways. Darcy near oblivious to the notion he'd taken a step toward Mary-Beth, Wyatt having readily perceived that threat in turn as the sandy blond man stepped toward his own mate, passing Mary-Beth that drink before coming to stand at her side in the same fluid motion. That implication subtle but clear enough as Darcy's teeth near ground over one another, his tongue toying with the tip of his left fang. Mary-Beth had never tried to have them sell her Moonshine before, that business not nearly so lucrative in the city as it was in the deep south. Either the woman was short on cash, trying to have them flog off her cheap seconds or she had some reason to believe this moonshine would sell. Maybe it was all three. Darcy turning those very thoughts within his mind as Wyatt continued, his own smooth lyrics attempting to relieve some of that tension and yet his gaze remained firmly upon Darcy in an entirely watchful manner. His own words holding that veiled warning.
I think your getting a little hot under your collar there, Darc, we don't we all-
"I think imma bust a cap in yar pansy ass, Wyatt. We was havin' a chat 'bout dis shine."
You know how good Mary-Beth's Moonshine is Darcy, you've had it before and Mary-Beth, there ain't no finer taster then Darcy, he's got the palette for it. Why don't we give Risque and Darcy both some more bottles for free to try, test out a bit, in good faith.
Mary-Beth's features had become almost stormy, Wyatt shot a near withering look and yet that vampiric woman was veritably trapped by her husbands words- and natural good nature. Withholding those further bottles likely to imply there was something wrong with that product. The Southern woman forced that smile back onto her lips. Why o'course we can give them some more to take back with them. Risque and I can chat more about it over supper, since y'all stayin'. Come, let us go to the dining room. Mary-Beth spun on her heel then, the overdressed woman all but flouncing from the room with Wyatt rushing to keep up like a trained puppy. Darcy inclined to watch them go before falling back into step beside his own mate. His mismatched gaze shifted briefly to the door before he lent toward his lover, his lips pressed to Risque's neck, that gesture, so laced with affection, allowing his lips to rest just below her ear as they worked that soft trail upward. Those words whispered quietly then and away from Mary-Beth's surely listening ears.
"If dis Shine turns out ta be any good an we can git enough bottles of it, I reckon I can work out whats in it and copy it easy enough. If it please ya."
His lips pressed softly again to his lover's neck as he lent away. Darcy so already having deduced that plan to undercut Mary-Beth entirely- if Risque desired it. After all, if it proved to sell well enough it would be far more...profitable- to make their own brand, or better yet, an entirely better version. His efforts so already having seen them promised more of those bottles. Little about that vampiric cowboy foolish in any sense. Darcy shifted then to hold that door open for his Mistress before coming to her side again to make their way into that formal dining room. That table thoroughly dressed and set as several servants rushed forward to hold their chairs out for them. Darcy moved to seat himself beside Risque. Wyatt and Mary-Beth seated across from them in turn before Mary-beth clapped. That sound so designed to announce herself ready to eat as further servants appeared with several cloches, one placde before each of those vampires before those lids were lifted to reveal those steaming bowls of boiled pork and bean soup with several pieces of fried chicken to the side. The scent of blood easily detectable in that soup. The added ingredient surely an addition for vampire tastes alone. Darcy certain he hadn't eaten this meal since ...his Ma had been alive.
The vampire reached for his spoon then, dipping it into that soup before lifting it to his lips. The strong taste of pork and salt as heady and thick as he remembered. That soup something of an acquired taste and yet one he took too readily. Those Southern flavours flaring to life on his tongue. That taste one Risque was unlikely to appreciate even with the edition of that blood that warmed his veins with every heated mouthful. The room was silent for a moment. Little more than those candles upon the table flickering as Mary-Beth, Wyatt and Darcy eagerly took to that meal. The lack of movement beside him so at last prompting Darcy's gaze to glance sideways and towards Risque, the vampiric queen seeming to eye that spoonful with a measure of...wary disdain.
"Das boiled pork."
His identification of the meat so hardly seemed to improve his lovers appetite. Darcy having suspected from the very beginning that such a meal would not be to her liking. In all the years he had spent at his Mistresses side he had rarely seen her partake of human food. On those occasions she did it was hardly anything that resembled that meal before them now. Risques tastes distinctly more delicate and expensive then this. As they held every right to be. His mate was ...a goddess amongst their kind. One deserving of the very best and nothing less. Darcy near painfully away of his homelands lack of presentation when it came to that dish- no matter how favoured it was amongst the Southerners and even himself. It was hardly any secret that this was the very state he had come from, Risque knew of his ranching past, she had plucked him from the very depths of it and yet- how often he strove to separate himself from that farm boy he had been. As if he could sweep so much of that past away. As if he might prompt Risque to forget where he had come from and that he had been born to a station in life far, far below her own. How rarely those...inadequacies dared to linger within him. Darcy forcing them violently downward. His irritation directed again toward Mary-Beth, her girlish features daring to wear that sneaking simper as if she had known from the very beginning Risque would not enjoy that meal. His head nodded toward that chicken then, as if that might somehow improve that supper.
"Dat's jus chicken, it's been deep-fried."
Risque, he suspected, would not enjoy anything deep-fried either and yet the chicken that lay beneath that batter might prove acceptable. Darcy having near finished that entire bowl of his own meal before Mary-Beth interjected again. Risque, Darling- do you want some more? We couldn't possibly talk any more business while your hungry now could we? Mary-Beth, Darcy had decided, was either the boldest, or the stupidest vampire to exist. That play at dominance slithering near snake like into that air once more. Neither woman relenting as Wyatt cleared his throat. That passive fool of a man attempting to quell the storm before it rose. Darcy almost displeased in the knowledge he might be denied that chance to see his lover tear shreds, metaphorical and literal, from her fellow coven leader. Why don't you entertain us Mary-Beth? We could use a song. You play, don't you Darcy? Darcy's gaze cut toward that grand piano on the side of the room, the vampire reaching smoothly for that glass of sweet tea he had been provided, the man eyeing that instrument as he drew that mouthful before returning the glass to the white table-clot adorned table.
It was a lie and yet with the deaths of his family Risque alone was the only being left whom had ever heard him play. Darcy seeing little need to produce those talents in present company. The simple firmness that blunt response seeming to warn Wyatt away from asking again as Mary-Beth rose eagerly from her chair only to summon some unfortunate little miscreant of a human servant to that piano- the man positively shaking with fear as he hurried to do as he was bid and play that chosen piece. Mary-Beth took that moment to relish in the attention she was given as she straightened her dress, the first few notes of that piano instantly recognisable- The Bonnie Blue Flag. The vampiric women shrilly beginning to sing that song. Oooooooh we are a band of brothers, native to the soil; fighting for ooooooour liberty with treasure blood and toooooil. When our rights were threatened, the cry rose near and faaaaaaar; HURRAH for the Bonnie Blue Flag that bears a single star! That desire to cover his sensitive ears had never been stronger. The vampire woman near tone deaf, he was sure of it, her inability to sing matched only by her inability to dress in modern clothing. Wyatt, for his part, looking on near adoringly.
"Fucking 'ell ."
Those very words were muttered beneath Darcy's breath. Risque alone capable of hearing them over that...racket. Darcy glancing from his mate to Mary-Beth again.
"Want me ta shoot 'er between da eyes? I can drop 'er 'ere and now like a sack o taters. Jus say da word, Darlin'."
We are rough men and used to rough ways.