CHAPTER 7 | plans

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Dawn broke as a sliver of the first rays of the morning sun found their way through a fissure in the drapes. Frustrated, Daniel gave up the illusion of being able to sleep. It had taken a long time to fall asleep and even then, he had dozed sporadically in the few hours since retiring and spent most of that time tossing and turning. His mind was in chaos, overloaded and, to make matters worse, his Wolf was pent up and needed a run. After rising and taking a shower, he wandered downstairs to let his Wolf loose.

The rest of the house was silent. It was too early for them to have already arisen. Knowing that the omegas would not yet be up, he made his way in search of coffee. He strode into the kitchen and stopped short at the sight of Parker sitting at the large breakfast bar, staring intently at the laptop screen in front of her.

Startled, she looked up with a smile on her face ready to greet whoever had walked through the door. Her smile froze midway then turned into a scowl. She ignored him, turned back to the monitor and continued to type. Her fingers flew across the small keyboard, the only sound was the quick tapping of the keys as they made contact with the surface behind.

Dismissing her presence, Daniel walked over to the elaborate coffee machine installed on one of the many kitchen benches and stood in front of it perplexed.

What the hell am I supposed to do with this?

The massive apparatus staring back at him resembled the high-tech contraptions that could be found in many of the top end restaurants and cafes. An array of knobs, dials, taps, buttons and graphic displays adorned the object in front of him. Not one of them appeared to have the words 'push this button to instantly receive your coffee' on it.

Daniel grabbed one of the coffee cups on top of the unit and placed it where he thought it might go. Not to be outdone by a machine, he attempted poking and fiddling with the knobs to see what they would do, but nothing that resembled coffee came forth.

Growing more and more frustrated he let out a low growl. All of a sudden, one of the metal cylinders on the side of the unit dripped with water.

Yes.

He quickly moved his cup underneath it to catch the coffee that would undoubtedly soon follow. He eyed the machine in front of him with a look of absolute triumph.

Without warning, the metal spout that had been dripping out water, sizzled and a high-pitched sound echoed throughout the room. Hot water, which was quickly turning into steam, appeared to be now bouncing off his cup and spurting all over the place - soaking anything and everything nearby. The display at the top of the unit flashed and a constant and irritating beeping sound began.

He jumped back. What the hell is wrong with this thing?

"Oh for Christ's sakes, move will you?" Somehow, Parker had materialised by his side.

She reached over, pulled out the offending cup and pushed a few buttons. The appalling sound stopped, and silence echoed heavily in the room again.

Parker proceeded to pick up another cup and placed it on one of the drip trays. She then removed a handle from the apparatus and filled it with ground coffee beans, which were dispensed from one of the containers.

After pressing it with a tamper, she locked the handle back in place. She pushed a few buttons and coffee with a luxurious smelling aroma of fruit and spice slowly poured out of the two small nozzles above the cup. When the cup was full, and no further liquid was dripping, she picked up the cup and unceremoniously deposited it in front of him. Still not speaking, she returned back to her seat and resumed tapping away at the keyboard.

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