100% That Witch - Celia Kyle Page 0,1
manila envelope out of her party dossier. “Why don’t I let you set up the place cards? That way it’ll be easier for you.”
“What will?” All innocence again.
“The switch.” With a wink, Aurora snapped her binder shut and nodded approvingly at the perfectly set up table. “I’m going up to change before people start arriving. No witnesses.” With a light wave, she was off.
She thinks she’s so clever. Still, Tiffany had to admit the guest of honor was right. She had only one thing on her mind. The chart was of cursory interest at best, but there was one thing she needed to change. With a few deft strokes, she slated herself to sit squarely next to Rhys Rhonelle, Aurora’s oldest brother. Just the thought of it made her all fluttery, and a cascade of glittery neon butterflies broke out around her head.
Thankfully no one else was around to tease her over her inability to control her powers, so she ignored them and they eventually fluttered off to do whatever magical neon butterflies did.
Switching her seat meant moving Onyx Rhonelle down the table, and Tiffany froze when she saw who she was putting him next to.
“Are you kidding?” she whispered.
Ryan Glittermist. That was going to make for an interesting evening. Ever since Nathan had called it off with the flamboyant singer, Ryan had studiously avoided any casual invitations to Hollow House. Aurora and Dane’s farewell dinner might just be the exception.
Setting out the cards, she came across one that had been needling her since she first saw the guest list. A single question mark. It took up residence directly next to Nathan’s spot. If Tiffany’s suspicions were correct, Sparks were gonna fly, for sure.
“Don’t tell me that Lady Pearls actually let someone else handle something?”
Feeling momentarily caught, Tiffany looked up to find Kelly leaning against the door frame, lazily licking her spoon before diving back into a pint of ice cream.
“I know, right?” Tiffany lowered her voice to a conspiratorial tone. “I think Dane is having a good effect on her.”
“He’d better,” Kelly said with a wicked little grin. “The Great Dane.” They shared a giggle, only to be interrupted by someone knocking on the front door.
“Shit,” Kelly said, looking down at her clothes.
She wore a cutoff tee and pajama bottoms, her normal bedroom attire. Tiffany hadn’t made a point of dressing up for the party, but since her wardrobe was all black tank tops and safety pins anyway, it was a small matter.
“You head on up,” she said. “I’ll cover things here.”
As Kelly hustled up the stairs, Tiffany straightened and made for the door. She pulled it open to find a burly, bearded, mountain of a man filling the doorway with his hotness. His long brown hair was pulled back in a high bun, and there was a sprinkling of tiny flowers tucked into his beard. Judging by the creamy pallor of his skin and the two tiny fangs just peeking out of his lips, he was a vampire.
“Oh, uh... Hello.” He looked a little surprised, like maybe he’d knocked on the wrong door.
“Hey. You here for the party?”
After several seconds of rapid blinking, he shook his head slightly and smiled at Tiffany. It was a nice smile, despite the flowers in the beard.
“I hope I’m not too early. Nathan said…”
“Of course, you’re Nathan’s friend.” She did what she could to keep from putting too much emphasis on the word “friend,” though the blossoms adorning him should have been a clue. “Those are a nice touch.”
“Nathan said to dress up, and this is about as good as it gets.”
Tiffany wasn’t one to judge other people’s style choices, but even she might have worn something a little smarter than a flannel shirt, jeans, and work boots. But they looked clean and at least the shirt was a nice solid blue, not that hideous black-and-red plaid.
“Come on in.” She swept to the side and led the new guest into the dining room. “Things are still getting set up,” she said, leaning over to light the candles. “Do you want a drink or anything, mister...”
“Baines,” the man said in a soft, self-effacing voice. “Nero Baines. I think, maybe—”
“He’ll have a beer.” Nathan appeared in the doorway leading to the kitchen. “Don’t worry. I’ll get it. Glad you could make it, Nero.”
“Thanks for inviting me. Nice to see you got dressed up for the occasion.”
He smiled lightly, but there was a wicked twinkle in his eye that tickled Tiffany. Nathan, who was in