Always Midnight

Madison Johnson's life changes the moment she lays eyes on Christian Watson. Christian is unlike any boy Madison has ever met in her life, he's a guy with a secret-he's a vampire with a deadly past. When they fall in love, Christian's past soon makes its way into their future together. As his past catches up to him, Madison must decide how much she will sacrifice to be with the man she loves.

Copyright © 2011


6. Introductions


I reached home about twenty minutes later, noticing my mom’s car in the driveway and a silver BMW I didn’t recognize. I went inside to find my mom and a man sitting on the couch in the living room. My mom looked up, happy to see me.

“Hey sweetheart, this is Dr. Carlson he’s a heart surgeon at the hospital.” 

Dr. Carlson stood up, extending his hand. I shook his hand and smiled, unsure of what to think of him. 

“Hello, Madison, it is nice to finally meet you. I have heard great things about you from your mother I feel like I already know you.” He laughed, a deep throaty laugh.

I smiled back; his laughter was a bit infectious. He had a megawatt smile, with brown eyes and hair. He was tall and a muscular, he couldn’t have been more than thirty-eight years old.

“Mom, I thought you were working a double tonight? Why are you home early?” I asked her. I glanced at my mother questioningly as she stood up and gave me a hug.

“Sit down honey there is something I want to tell you.” She smiled, but she looked anxious.

I began to panic, bracing myself for some news I had a feeling I would dislike. I sat on the chair across from them as they both settled back into the couch. 

“Honey, Dr. Carlson and I have been going on dates for sometime now, I would’ve told you earlier but I wanted to make sure that I was comfortable and secure enough with our relationship before I introduced you two face to face. We’ve come at a stage in our relationship where we feel this could become a serious relationship, I wanted to make sure this was fine with you before we continued. You know how much I value your opinion.”

I became eerily still as I processed my mothers words. This information caused a bucket full of emotions stirring within me-anger, happiness, shock and back to anger. I was sure this emotional rollercoaster was apparent on my face because my mom became tense which caused Dr. Carlson to look very uncomfortable. I took a deep breath to steady myself, I wanted to yell, it was bad enough I had to share my mom with her work now I had to share her with someone else. Part of me was happy for her it was hard for her to move on after thedivorce I wanted her to be happy, at least one of us was getting our dream guy. I half smiled, half frowned not sure what to do or say. Silent tension clung in the air for a couple minutes before I realized how childish I was being, my mother was happy again and I would not stand in her way. I smiled brightly this time, my mother sighed in relief. Dr. Carlson still looked unsure for a minute but smiled as well.

“How did you guys exactly meet, I know it must've been at the hospital but who made the first move?” I probed.

This time Dr. Carlson spoke up. “Yes, we met at a meeting, I have seen your mother before but was too scared to ever ask her out until I had a patient that reminded me life was too short to waste. I asked her out, which she said yes and here we are.” He grabbed my mother’s hand, she beamed at him. I nodded my head realizing that this Dr. Carlson was a complete gentleman. 

“Will you be staying for dinner Dr. Carlson? I'm a good cook if I may say so myself.” I boasted to him. 

He smiled. “That’s very nice of you Madison I would love to stay. I heard you were a good cook, thank you very much. Please feel free to call me James.”

“Okay James. Come on Mom I'm hungry.” I stood up and led the way to the kitchen. 

I ended up making lasagna for dinner to which James helped himself to more than one serving, at least he likes my cooking, brownie point for him I thought to myself. Over the course of dinner, I learned that James was widowed with a son my age but who didn’t attend Maple Falls High School because they lived in Beacon Hills. His son, Jared was also starting his junior year and hadn’t met my mother yet. Can’t wait to see how that turns out I thought, smiling to myself. I couldn’t believe one day could have this many surprises. We finished dinner, cleaned the dishes, settled back in the living room watching television and laughing. It was getting late, even though I was genuinely enjoying myself I was exhausted and wanted to crash in my bed. I said goodnight to James and went to hug my mother, who showed her appreciation of my hospitality by squeezing me tightly. I gave her a kiss on the cheek, waved at James and went upstairs to get ready for bed. 

I went to bed that night thinking about how long it took my mother to open up enough to let someone else in. My mother and I didn’t always see eye to eye because of our differences in 
our personalities, but I could never deny the many sacrifices she made when I moved in. The next two days went by in a blur. I found out my mother's side of the story as promised by her, she talked as if she were a love struck teenager and I couldn’t help but be happy for her. James came to dinner for the following two days, which gave us the chance to get to know each other better. It felt wonderful to see my mother in the early stages of love; she was letting her guard down, not being so cautious. 

I think deep down my mother knew I would feel selfish because she made sure she came home earlier sometimes from work to spend some time together. It was nice that my mother found balance in her life. My mother had a tendency to commit too much time to a focal point in her life, whether it was spending time with me, or working. She balanced everything, dispersing her time between all three of her most important commitments; work, James and me. Spending a lot of time with James and my mother almost made me forget about Christian. Almost. 

I woke up Tuesday morning earlier than usual, my mom was surprised I woke up early but was happy I was up to see her before she left for work. I checked the Weather Channel, which predicted a nice gloomy cloudy day, no surprise there. I settled on wearing a black shirt with dark blue jeans, instead of throwing my hair in the usual ponytail, I worked on creating sexy curly yet messy waves. Normally, I don’t wear makeup but I settled on a smoldering dark eye effect with a splash of purple eye shadow. I wore my black knock off version of Ugg boots, which were nice and a lot cheaper than the real thing. I sprayed a bit of Mariah Carey perfume, quickly ate a bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios and headed out to my car. I arrived at school about a half hour earlier than every one else. I was nervous as hell to start the day because I knew I would see Christian but I was determined to ignore him as much as I could. I would not cry today, I would make sure Christian got no more tears from me. I purposely put dark makeup on, that way I would think about not ruining my makeup.

I noticed a couple of senior boys standing close by my locker as I went to get my books, I could feel their eyes watching me as I stood there searching for my book. One of them came up to me smiling, I smiled back as he approached me. I knew him briefly, his name was Eric Harding, he was on the varsity swim team. He had quite the reputation at school for being a playboy, this boy left a trail of tears and broken hearts. 

“Hi beautiful. Your name is Madison right? Friends with Ace?” His green eyes sparkled at me as he gave me the look over.

I smiled politely realizing he was talking about Dean. I wasn’t joking when I said Dean was very popular at school. 

“Hi. Yeah, my name is Madison, and I’m friends with Dean. You’re Eric right? Captain of the swim team?” I asked. 

There was no way I would ever date this playboy but it felt nice to be called beautiful I had to shamefully admit. It would’ve felt amazing if it had come out of Christian’s mouth. The thought of him made me frown I didn’t want to think about him right now. Eric smiled at me, I could feel his ego growing bigger, threatening to squash everyone in the hall. I couldn’t help but roll my eyes knowing Eric wouldn’t notice, he was too busy looking other places that made me feel uncomfortable. I slammed my locker door shut, startling Eric, interrupting any perverted thoughts. 

“Watcha doing this weekend beautiful? If you’re not busy then maybe we could hangout, go to dinner or see a movie.” Eric asked me. 

Geesh how original of a date, I bet this was the routine he used to ambush unsuspecting lower classmen girls.

“I’m sort of busy this weekend maybe another time Eric, I’m sorry.” I told him, not sorry at all.

He blinked, staring at me as if I spoke a different language. I would’ve bet my college savings that he was not the type of guy used to being refused. “See you around Eric.” As I walked around him, I could see his friends howling with laughter. I kept on walking when I noticed Christian by his locker with Emilia and Lucas, Christian glanced at me. Shock and anger spread across his face as he held my gaze. What the hell was his problem now? Maybe he saw Eric ask me out! Was he jealous? Well he shouldn’t be jealous he already has a girlfriend. I glared at him, realizing how childish I was being but I didn’t care. Suddenly, Emilia caught my attention because she gave me the dirtiest look I ever saw in my life. The saying, “If looks could kill…” popped in my head, well I was having none of her attitude. I mustered up the dirtiest look I could give right back her to her, Emilia’s jaw dropped in surprise. I walked past them, triumphantly, right into my classroom. Lunchtime soon came, Jocelyn and Jensen obviously skipped their classes because they were at our lunch table. They bombarded me with questions about what had happened between Eric and I. I gave them the full scoop before switching the conversation to our upcoming camping trip.

“You guys I’m not sure we should go.” Jocelyn spoke up. “Did you all hear about that murder that happened not too far from the Forbidden Forest?” Jocelyn word’s chilled me. I’ve been so into my own world. I forgot about the world I was living in.

“Jo what are you talking about?” I asked, bewildered.

Maple Falls never had serious crimes such as murder, this was a small town. My blood chilled at the thought that such hateful and violent behavior could happen here. But then again, it was always the worst crimes that happened in small towns, the type of towns people thought were immune to such violence. 

“Two weeks ago there was a man who was hiking in the Forbidden Forest he must’ve got lost on the trails but he just vanished. Anyway when they found his body a few days later, he had wounds all over his body, but that’s not what killed him-he was decapitated. People are saying it was an animal attack but I think it was murder.” Jocelyn said ominously. 

“If it hasn’t been officially ruled a homicide then that’s your own opinion, not fact. But whether it was human or animal, maybe we shouldn’t go out that far.” I said to them, animal or human I was scared to my core.

“No! We can’t cancel, for all we know it could’ve been an animal, besides the guy was all alone there’s going to be nine of us all together no one would bother us. We’ve done this every year, it’s tradition! Our kids will probably do this when they get our age! My dad could send patrols over once in a while if that will convince you guys to go, let’s not let this scare us away from having a good time.” Angelica pleaded with the whole table. 

“Okay, lets take a vote you guys all in favor for going raise your hand and those not in favor of going then keep your hand down.” Dean said to us.

Everyone raised their hands, and even though I did raise my hand I was nervous about going but at least Angelica’s dad could put some of his troops out there to watch us. Everything would be okay. I hoped. 

I headed towards English class with Lillian and Katie early, so I would be able to find a seat far away from Christian. When I arrived, only about half of the class was present so I got to chose a seat way in back that way he couldn’t glare holes in my back. I was sure he was going to be in a bad mood since I wasn’t pleasant to his sister. Five minutes before class started, Christian walked in and took the seat across Lillian in a row in front of me. He appeared to be in high spirits, smiling ear to ear, I had to slow my breathing, he was dazzling. I couldn’t help but smile, whatever had made him happy, made me happy for him. He slowly turned to face Lillian. Christian continue to stare and smile at Lillian who looked away, bashful not sure how to respond to his staring. 

“Hello, Lillian.” Christian's musical voice rang out to catch the whole class attention. My smile faltered, the way he said her name made me wish he‘d said my name instead. I sat there waiting to see what else he would say.

Lillian was completely mortified, her fear and confusion was etched deep into her face, I could see her thinking hard on how to respond. She was trying to be nice, and make sure she did nothing to make me upset. She spoke slowly thinking of her words, 

“Hi. Christian.” she hesitated, waiting for him to continue. 

"Do you remember a couple of days ago what I told you?"

“Yeah, I do.” 

“I meant every word and when the time is right you and everyone else will believe me.” Christian told her. 

My heart wanted to implode. I had no clue as to what Christian was talking about, and I was upset that Lillian failed to mention this information.

“It’s not me or anyone else who needs to believe you, Christian and you know it.” Lillian said back, and with that, she turned away from him.

I noticed her fidgeting in her seat, no doubt trying to shake the laser glares I shot through her back. Christian looked at her thoughtfully as if he gained respect for Lillian. He was silent for a moment before he too turned to face the front of the class. I took a sweeping glance around the classroom and everyone wore the confused expression I myself wore. Before I could get some answers from Christian or Lillian, Mrs. Patrick walked in. Out of frustration I focused all my negative energy on the lecture, which lasted forty minutes before I noticed the time, the bell rang. I rushed out of my seat, not caring to find out anything anymore and headed towards the door, when I accidentally bumped into someone. 

“Sorry” I muttered and looked up to Lucas staring down at me as he towered over me. 

“Watch it.” He growled. I was floored by his hostility. 

“Madison-” Lillian called behind me, but I didn’t turn around. I rushed past Lucas, leaving her behind.

I went to my first study hall to fill Jocelyn and Jensen on what happened in English class. I found out as soon as I saw Jensen eyes burn with rage that I made a mistake. 

“What conversation did those two exactly have? Who the hell does this guy think he is? First breaking one of my best friend’s heart then having secret conversations with my girlfriend? I think it’s time I had a chat with this douche bag.” Jensen growled. 

“No Jensen, trust me it wasn’t like that I’m sorry I didn’t mean to make you upset. You and I both know Lilly has only eyes for you, I don‘t understand why she didn‘t mention it but it had to be for a good reason. Please Jensen for me, don’t say anything, I really want this whole situation to go away.” I pleaded.

“Fine, but you better get this situation figured out because if this jerk thinks he’s going to be going after Lillian he‘s going to be the one with a broken heart and a broken jaw.” Jensen never was one for threats but I could tell by the look in his eyes he was not playing around. 

I managed to keep Jensen’s mind off of Christian by talking about the camping trip which Jocelyn did not enjoy, I knew she was paranoid. In order to make her happy, I talked about her favorite subject, boys. Jocelyn was the class flirt, which she had no shame about, I could always count on her to give me juicy details about her love life. She wasn’t shy when it came to talk about things such as sex, which usually made me feel uncomfortable because I had no sex experience. I barely had kissing experience. Not that I would mention that tidbit of information to anyone. My second study hall blurred by and before I knew it, it was time to go home. I went back to my locker to put back my books when I noticed Eric Harding with his posse of jocks walk up to me.

“Hey, I decided to give you one more chance to accept my date I figured you didn’t understand that you only get one shot to be with me.” Eric smirked. I rolled my eyes annoyed at his arrogance. 

“Eric! Really? I only get one shot? Let me think about it…NO! I get you think you're some hot god in this school but you’re not my type, why don’t you go and pray on freshmen who have no clue what a dirt bag you are.” I slammed my locker shut and walked past him. 

His friends were nearly on the floor laughing. I exited the school and headed to my car, when I noticed Christian waiting by his car. He watched me, amused. I didn’t have time for his cryptic mood swings, I walked past him to my car. If I already this much drama when school wasn’t even half way done, I could only imagine what else would happen.    
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