Vasari Streams 2
Laredo Dia and Jude Forest have been in love for a very long time. It is obvious to everyone else but them, at least on the surface. Over the painfully long years their attraction and fondness for each other has grown to a near obsession as they can’t stand to be without each other, even for a short time; but still quickly end up constantly bickering.
Following another brief disagreement they were forced to arrive separately at the Vasari Castle, Italy, to celebrate Carlo and Wes’ fated soulmate union. Shortly after being welcomed another argument soon began when Laredo spotted Jude talking to Vi. This time Violet Vasari had enough, and steps right in, magically freezing them both, then proceeded to discover a lifechanging event, long suspected by her.
Days later, the party moved over to Italus Scottsdale, home of the Bart Magnus coven, to continue with another surprise celebration. Without warning a strange satchel comes to light that contains mysterious items involving the ancient Dia witch family.
This unexpected satchel normally would only involve female members of the dynastic Dia witches, but this time is different. They have been responsible for a secret past and current devotion to the god Dionysus cult, who is now demanding revenge for an intolerable insult. Ages have past until the appointed time set by the eternal Fates, to right this terrible wrong.
That time is now.
As the legend goes, a magical cup was stolen from Dionysus thousands of years ago according to common knowledge, allowing him to be made vulnerable and later forced into an enchanted slumber. The cup must be located and returned to Dionysus to free him from his intolerable predicament, a responsibility now held by the Dia witch coven alpha.
Laredo finds that much to his dismay he and Jude are on the hook to perform this dangerous request and are obligated without question to Dionysus. Laredo and Jude must locate the incredible cup and return it to Dionysus where an incredible reward awaits them; fail to return it to Dionysus, and they will slumber eternally alongside him without any hope of escape.
Spoiler Alert: This is book two of the Vasari Streams series. It may contain references and spoilers to the first Vasari Streams book and also other paranormal books including the Desert Vampire, Desert Witch, Desert Paranormal, and the Archaeologist series by Nathan Grant.
I casually walked into the Lake House at Vasari Streams Arizona, just in time to see Laredo Dia glaring at Jude Forest, but nothing new there I have to admit. They were always mixing it up about one thing or another and have been for the last fifteen years to my reckoning and from what I’ve heard from everyone else.READ MORE
It was apparent that they were at it yet again sniping at each other for some new useless reason, and of course just in time for us to leave for Italy. Oddly, they were constantly together every chance they got, often at every meal, but were never on the same page for long it would seem.
They should just move in together to do it more conveniently.
“I just said forget about it Jude, now drop it. I’ve already told you how I feel about this, several times in fact so just get over yourself and quit being such a pest. I can see now this was a really bad idea from the start, so enough of this!” Laredo told him.
His eyes glowing with irritation at Jude.
Jude shook his head vigorously and then ran his long fingers through his thick dark red hair before pointing at Laredo.
“Look man, all I did was say I don’t give a damn about whatever your past might be or whatever your age is now or ever so you are the one that should get over yourself. I was making an honest point to you, and you got all bent out of shape instead of listening to reason for the first time in your, however long it may be, life and I’m getting sick of trying to get through to you. Oh, fuck it Laredo, just drop it. I’m not going on this damn trip considering this kind of constant racket from you, and the unstoppable contention between us,” Jude raged back at him just before Laredo suddenly vanished.
“Oh great tantrum time yet again and for the second time today. It looks like we get to babysit the two drama queens instead of enjoying the wonderful trip we have planned. Instead we get to enjoy two whole weeks of this petty childish crap and all the damn alpha posturing,” Wes told me.
He was appearing beyond irritated by these two yet again, and as always lately it was getting worse.
Adding to his frustration, Wes was struggling to make his long blond hair man bun stay in place, but it wasn’t cooperating one bit, so then he just gave up and waved his hand to get it right.
Vi then clapped her hands dramatically to get everyone’s attention, still irritated by the recent drama.
“Okay guys, Danny, Janet, and I will see you there, Wes knows where the castle is located so he can take you there without a problem. Trust me, I’ll take care of Laredo when we get there, and end this crap once and for all. There will be no more nonsense from him during this trip, you can believe me on this, and I’ll have a special surprise for him very soon. You two can handle and calm down my little red wolf pal here. Please try to get him to start making sense if that is even possible in this lifetime and before you arrive in Italy,” Aunt Vi told us with a sly grin.
She leaned over to give Jude a kiss on his cheek as he eyed her suspiciously knowing she was probably up to something. She then took hold of Grandpa’s hand and vanished along with Janet.
“Okay guys, despite what Vi says, I don’t want to hold you up around here or receive any more lectures, so I’m going to take off and go back home for a while to zone out. I hope you have a great time over there drinking all that wonderful Vasari wine that I’ve had a very welcome taste of here. I’m sorry for the brief drama here before you all leave to have fun. I’ll see you in a couple of weeks then. I will keep things running smoothly over here, I promise,” Jude told us.
He was trying to sound casual and nonchalant but was looking quite sad and actually completely miserable if the truth is to be told, and right about now I’d love to give Laredo a good zap on his stubborn ass.
Jude had been really excited about this trip to Italy and to see the Vasari Castle that he’d heard so much about.
I wasn’t the only one not having any more of this churn as I looked over at Wes and saw the gleam in his eye as he winked furtively at Nina.
“You guys really need to get over yourselves you know, it is getting a bit old by now, and what has it been, it seems like a hundred years? You both want the same damn thing, each other, and it is so obvious to everyone else around here. However, you two keep it up and are too damn blind to see it. Damn. I’m so tired of hearing you bellyache and bitch day in and day out about Laredo. You know he loves you, like you do him, hell, it has been over a decade now, closer to fifteen years I would have to guess. You won’t just fucking get on with it and talk to each other damn it, and sooner or later I predict someone is going to give you the push you need to get things moving along, mark my words. Anyone in their right mind would be frustrated waiting for one of you to get over yourselves and jump on the other one like you both are dying to do in the first damn place. Your damn blue balls must go great with that dark red hair of yours,” Opal raged at Jude, tired as well as everyone else of their constant nonsense that seems to have no end in sight.
“Leave my private balls out of this Opal,” Jude shot back at her, trying unsuccessfully to be defensive and taken by surprise by that one.
“Well said, and right on target for sure Opal. Even Aunt Vi is getting ready to give Laredo a good strong zap on his butt before we get there for his trouble if she hasn’t done it by now. I wouldn’t put it past her for one second when she hits this frustration level, and you know she adores him. I could tell she was really pissed off this time by interfering with the vacation and wasn’t about to let this keep going. Okay then, is everyone ready for us to leave and get this party underway? Mom and Dad have promised to keep an eye on things around here and at the store, so we are all good to go,” Wes told us.
He was giving me a sly knowing wink before he glanced over at Jude.
He didn’t suspect a thing.
Contingency plans are so wonderful as long as they don’t bite you in the ass for trying to help.
“Okay guys have a good trip and don’t worry about anything while you are gone, we will be fine. Wes, we can use the usual mental link that you set up with me in case anything comes up, but I won’t bother you otherwise,” Jude told us again taking a very slow step toward the front door.
He then leaned in for a quick hug with Wes, then me before we left.
He didn’t notice us take a quick extra step back from him to let my sister and Opal close in on him, with Opal grinning like the Cheshire Cat.
“Come here you sad puppy,” Opal told Jude, giving him a warm hug as my sister Nina moved closer to them grinning too.
Nina put her arms around Jude too along with Opal, then kissed his cheek, but I saw her wink at Opal then nod.
She turned to look over at me.
“Okay the time for nonsense is now over, see you in a few,” Nina told us with a big smile.
Jude suddenly realized they were still tightly holding on to him and about to teleport to Italy to join the others.
“Wait! What the hell are you two doing to me?” Jude managed to say before they all immediately vanished.
“That was a good call, I thought he was never going to drop the sob story and shut the fuck up. It looks like we have luggage detail here once again,” Wes told me.
He then waved his hand and everyone’s bags disappeared, heading for the ancestral Vasari Castle in Italy.
“Damn you are good,” I breathed.
“You know it!”
He took my hand and suddenly we disappeared, heading for some peaceful fun in the warm Italian countryside, arriving almost as soon as we left Arizona.
“There should not be a single doubt in your mind about that by now,” Wes told me with his usual suggestive grin.
We instantly stood in front of my family’s ancestral giant hewn stone castle on the top of a large hill overlooking the Vasari vineyards, consisting of thousands of acres spreading off to the distant horizon under the deep blue Italian sky.
The huge Vasari Lake, and the magical source of the lake by the town of Vasari Streams, shimmered in the gorgeous balmy late afternoon, with a light cooling breeze gently moving the deep blue magically shimmering water.
I took a long slow breath as I looked around at the incredibly famous scenery, breathing in the softly scented air.
“I adore Italy, I spent several months here a few years ago on assignment, and just fell in deeply in love with it, and probably somewhat due to my genetic supernatural memory. This setting and the buildings are beyond beautiful, but I have never seen this before as you know all too well, with Mom putting me off ever coming here while she was still alive, even going so far as to come here to stay with me to keep me away from here. She pulled that before I came back home. Now, tell me, is that,” I began to mention.
However, after glancing around, at least for now Mom’s reasoning was clear, since back then as I didn’t have a clue about my magical heritage, and this place screamed with magic intent.
I then pointed at what I was talking about for the last part of my question to Wes, a big smile on my face while shaking my head in surprise.
“Yes, that is Vi’s same great car you saw at the lake. She takes her baby everywhere she goes and has it spelled to stay in pristine shape no matter what. If you haven’t noticed, it changes color to match her lipstick, but no one is saying the word vain, no one. I’m positive those earlier times were tough for you, but those confusing days are in the past now Carlo, with our bright future shining ahead of us. I’m only glad that Marta and Aunt Vi decided to kiss and make up and finally start to play nice after all this time, ghost or not. Well I guess we’d better go inside and face the Dia music as I’m sure Jude is having a fit by now and I’m sure Laredo isn’t about to let him get away with it even for a moment. Later we can take a full tour of this grand place and you will love it, I promise you. I know for a fact that Aunt Vi has been dying to get you over here to show you around and introduce you to everyone who has been waiting impatiently to meet you. I also heard that the Magnus boys from Italus Scottsdale, are here vacationing in Italy at Bart’s ancestral home as well, and that of course includes Jude’s first cousin Craig. So it looks like you will finally meet the supernatural world famous Bart Magnus and Vito Lizorno of Italus Magnus coven fame,” Wes told me with a grin, making me start to wonder just what was in the cards for this visit.
As we walked up to the ancient, enormous, wooden, and iron clad doors, we were only a few feet away when they majestically and silently swung open with Aunt Vi standing behind them with a sardonic grin on her beautiful face, making me wonder what the hell she was getting up to.
“I was questioning what was taking you so long, but Danny was thinking that you were going to blow us off and go traveling honeymoon wise. Please, come into your archaic family home Carlo, and now your home as well Wes my love,” she invited us with a grin.
She took us by our arms to stroll inside as the huge doors silently closed behind us, shutting out the outside world.
As we walked through the immense rock lined passage and then under an ancient foreboding and sharp looking heavy wrought iron gate, I stopped in my tracks in absolute shock, staggered by the unexpected vision ahead.
Once through the impossibly old castle entry with dangerous looking battle implements gracing the walls, things changed dramatically.
Everything inside the main building is bright, airy, and extremely modern, with what seemed to be miles of white marble heading off in all directions. The floors are graced with astonishing thick dark blood red carpets that flowed up the massive, graceful slab marble staircases to the several floors above.
It was a very different, quite unexpected space since there is a lot of glass with modern furniture mixed with ancient dark wood pieces anchoring the vast space.
Several hand woven tapestries, descriptive of past events, are magically shimmering on the hand troweled walls along with centuries old paintings and modern art as well for balance and interest.
There are three stories framing the large open central area with many large glistening cabinets scattered about. Countless beautiful objects grace the enclosed spaces, but a few cabinets gave off distinctive vibes of deadly threatening power, warning the casual viewer upfront of the potential danger if they foolishly dared to touch them.
Four large heavy modern style black iron and blazing crystal chandeliers sparkled with glittering light, dazzling one’s eyes if you stared at them for too long as they slowly and silently rotated in place to amaze their welcome guests.
As I turned, I stopped in shock, when I saw both Laredo and Jude standing face to face, inches apart, and frozen in place. They were obviously spelled, and both stared at each other furiously and apparently angry as well at their predicament.
Only their eyes could move, and they both now glared at us, unable to even use the mental link.
This was going to be good when they got loose.
“What’s up with them? Did Laredo do that?” I asked.
Getting even closer, I was now clearly sensing very angry feelings and the exceptionally upset vibes coming from both of them.
Aunt Vi shook her head, trying not to snicker at their predicament. Nina half smiled and took a deep breath.
“No I did. I’d had enough of their nonsensical crap in this lifetime. I felt they both needed to get over themselves but now, I figured making them see what has been in front of them all this time might do the trick. It was either that or something worse involving the Vasari Castle dungeons for attitude corrections, and nobody in their right minds wants that. Just as we arrived here, about the same time as Opal and I got here with Jude in tow, Laredo was waiting for, and expecting us to do something like this. Boy, was he pissed when we materialized. But when he saw Jude, his eyes were instantly blazing, and he promptly went for it. He started in on him again like there had been no break and believe me Jude was no amateur and was dishing it right back to him. Jude was letting him know that being here with him was not at all his idea, or his vision of a good time to be polite here while cleaning up the rather descriptive words. Laredo was then demanding to know if Jude put me up to bringing him here, and that if he’d wanted him here, he would have brought him, himself. So then Jude was yelling right back at him, telling him to mind his own damn business and to get over himself. That was when the dangerous looking wolfen fangs were dropping into place and things were becoming serious. Quite frankly I wasn’t about to have a little red wolf running around shedding his red fur all over the place while playing tag with a too stubborn Earth Witch. Jude made it clear that he didn’t want to be anywhere near to Mr. Frigid, and yes, he said that to him and to his face, and we all almost lost it. Jude told him to quit being so, bleep, full of himself, bleep. The closer they got to each other, the louder they became, even though Jude was having trouble speaking clearly with the fangs in the way and his face starting to extend, making things worse by the second. I was sick of the constant racket by this point and knew I needed to act, because it was my home too after all, and they were both being disrespectful to everyone else. They were starting to give me a headache on my vacation, so I shut them both right up and off while putting Jude’s teeth and face back where they belonged with him howling in anger. Now they can’t move or talk but can only see each other and us but they can hear everyone else but can’t do a fucking thing about it, talk about impotent for Mr. Frigid,” Nina giggled.COLLAPSE
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