Chapter no 8

The Housemaid's Secret (The Housemaid, Book 2)

“Maybe,” Brock says, “she’s a vampire. And she can’t come out of her room during the daylight hours or else she will turn to dust.”

I have told Brock all about the Garrick family, and over a post-dinner cocktail at his apartment, he is offering some very unhelpful explanations for why I have been over there half a dozen times, and Wendy Garrick has not once come out of that guest bedroom even though I’m certain she’s inside. That one time the door cracked open is the closest I’ve ever come to seeing her.

“She’s not a vampire,” I say, shifting my legs under me on Brock’s sofa. “You don’t know that.”

“I do. Because vampires aren’t real.” “A werewolf then?”

I smack Brock in the arm which almost makes him spill the glass of wine he’s holding. “That doesn’t even make sense. Why would she need to stay in her bedroom if she’s a werewolf?”

“Okay, then maybe…” he says thoughtfully. “Maybe she’s got a little green ribbon around her neck, and if someone unties it, her head will fall off?”

I take a sip of the expensive wine Brock poured for me. The expensive bottles are by far better than the cheap ones, but I can never detect all the subtle notes of honeydew or lavender or whatever. He keeps asking me, and now I’m lying and telling him that I can tell, but I really can’t. I’m faking wine.

“I just get a weird vibe,” I say. “That’s all.”

“Well, I’ve told you all of my best ideas.” He puts his arm around me, bringing me closer to him. “So if it’s not a vampire, a werewolf, or a severed head, what do you think is going on?”

“I…” I set my wine glass on the coffee table and chew on my lower lip. “Honestly, I have no idea. It’s just a bad feeling.”

Brock seems distracted for a moment, looking at my mostly full glass sitting on the table. “You’re not finishing that?”

“I don’t know. I guess not.”

“But that’s a Giuseppe Quintarelli,” he says, as if that explains absolutely anything.

“I guess I’m not thirsty.”

“Thirsty?” He looks traumatized by my statement. “Millie, you don’t drink wine because you’re thirsty.”

“Okay.” I pick up the glass and take another sip. Sometimes I wonder why he’s even dating me, other than because he says he thinks I’m pretty. He acts like he’s so lucky to be with me. But that’s crazy. I’m not the catch

—he is. “You’re right. This is really good.”

I finish the rest of the glass of wine, but the truth is, the whole time I’m thinking about the Garricks.

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