Take My Hand Chapter 6

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Chapter 6

            Carson looked down into her soft emerald eyes, loving the way her lips were slightly parted from the kiss, pink and so very warm against the chill of his own lips. He raised his hand, laying it along her jaw as he traced the pad of his thumb along her bottom lip. He smiled as her warm breath caressed his finger.

            “Tell me about you, Carson,” Jo whispered.

            “What would you like to know?” Carson replied, taking her hand and pulling her toward the sofa where he sat and tucked her into his side. She laid her head on his shoulder as he wrapped one arm around her shoulders. With his other hand he laced his fingers through hers.

            “What are those designs on your skin?” Jo asked as Carson felt her trace her thumb across his hand as though they were still there.

            “They’re called dermaglyphs. Every male vampire has them. The older he is, the more intricate they are. Most of us choose to keep them hidden except during the initial moments of the change, though.”

            “So they are still there even now?”

            “Yes,” Carson answered as he released the shield he had up.

            “They’re beautiful,” Jo whispered as the designs appeared on his hand in a shade slightly darker than his tanned skin. “Why do they change colors?”

            “They change based on my mood. That’s why most vampires choose to keep them hidden. They allow you to know a lot about the male and can work to your disadvantage in a fight.”

            “What do the colors mean?”

            “Well, this tan color means that I am calm and content.”

            “I see,” Jo remarked. “What about purple and gold?”

            Carson felt her use one finger to gently trace the designs again. It made goosebumps rise along his arms, and he closed his eyes to enjoy the sensation, knowing the tan would shift to gold. “Gold means I am feeling pleasure. Purple is a sign of apprehension. It means I am worried or nervous.”

            “Oh,” Jocelyn said. “That’s…well, that could be good to know,” she said softly, nearly inaudible to ears less sensitive than Carson’s. “Are there other colors?”

            “Yes, there are many. Black is rage. Red is passion. Indigo is sadness. There are many colors, Jo, and each has a distinct meaning. That is why they are very telling to other vampires. And in a fight, each male will play to the emotions of the other vampire if the dermaglyphs aren’t being cloaked.”

            “Oh, that’s very interesting. Do you intend to keep them cloaked from me?”

            Carson thought for a moment and then kissed the top of Jo’s head. “No, my sweet innocent. I will never keep secrets from you. I would have you always know how I am feeling, though it is a frightening notion for me.”

            Jo sighed, saying softly, “Thank you, Carson.”

            “For what?”

            “For trusting me,” she replied, smiling up at him. “So, does it hurt when you change?”

            Carson chuckled humorlessly. “Well, it isn’t exactly pleasant in some ways. There are things I haven’t even begun to show you, Jo. For instance, I have wings.”

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