stock: typewriter

Sneak Peek

Title: Nature of the Beast
Rating: FR13
Synopsis: A sneak peek for the demon’verse I’ve been prattling on about for forever.
Warning: Domestic violence

Rawlins, Wyoming

Olive oil speckled the stovetop as Jude used the spatula to adjust the sausages whistling their way towards being well done, exactly how Brent liked them, away from the skillet’s edge before she turned to retrieve the bread. Her pleased smile wilted when she noticed the bruises decorating her forearm and the fact that they had faded from angry red to sickening yellow did nothing to alleviate her sudden rush of discomfort and she willed herself to focus on the twist-tie keeping her from the beginnings of toast.

The coffeemaker beeped in time with the shower turning off deeper in the apartment and Jude’s smile returned with the perfect timing as she turned to the refrigerator. It opened with the near melodious sound of random objects clanging together as she grabbed the nearest plastic bottle and placed the creamer Brent liked next to the mug she had ready for him. The refrigerator door closed with the bathroom door opening and Jude made her way forward, hands dancing across the countertop as she added the bread to the toaster and turned off the heat to the skillet.

She added the freshly cooked sausage to the plate, next to the sunnyside up egg and contemplated salting the dish for him, but nixed the idea with a shudder and turned back to the coffeemaker to pour her fiancé his first cup of the morning. She stiffened, left hand coming up to press against her chest, when she found him standing directly behind her in his robe and a wide smile.

He stepped forward and she relaxed, noticing the lack of tension around his eyes, which meant his smile was genuine, his good cheer wasn’t a front as he caught her left hand, pulling it away from her chest and her towards him as he pressed a light kiss to her forehead. “It smells wonderful, Jude,” she relaxed minutely against his chest, her right hand coming up to hold his waist as he pressed his cheek to her forehead and continued, “You may have outdone yourself this time.”

She laughed and pulled back. “You say that every morning.”

The hand holding her left tightened and she blinked, blue eyes widening as Brent’s good mood vanished as he inclined his head and questioned, “Are you implying I’m redundant?”

“What? Brent, n-no,” she stuttered, hating herself and him before Jude shook her head and pulled back, “I was making a joke. I-I swear. Just a joke.”

Brown eyes closed and Jude swallowed around the tightening of her throat as Brent’s shoulders relaxed and the grip on her hand loosened. His brows rose, eyes opening as he offered her a sheepish smile and ducked his head, “Sorry, babe. Just jumpy this morning.”

Jude eased back from him, retaking her hand and left the remnants of her dignity behind as she offered him a weak smile and motioned towards the counter. “Don’t worry about it. I know you’ve got a lot on your plate lately. Enjoy your breakfast.”

“Aren’t you having any?”

Her head shook, the dark waves of her hair falling forward to crowd her face as she informed him, “I’ll have some yogurt and I-I got peaches last night at the market so…” she trailed off and turned away from him. Jude made her way to the stove and with shaking hands picked up the pan the egg had been cooked in and moved towards the sink. The back of her neck itched and she knew Brent was watching her as she turned the faucet to warm and added soap to the pan.

The tightness in her chest eased when she heard Brent pull the coffee pot free of the maker and pour himself a cup as she began to scrape clean the pan with a plastic scrubby. The steady rhythm of her hands was soothing and helped to ease her frazzled nerves as she finished the pan and then rinsed it. Soap gathered around the diamond on her finger and she rinsed that, silently wishing she’d remembered to remove it when she’d begun cleaning up.

“Olivia.” Her busy hands stilled, her heart sinking towards her feet with the use of her first name and her next breath shuddered outward as she turned off the faucet and turned to him. He thrust his cup at her and she hissed when the hot contents sloshed over the side to beat against her bare feet. “Tell me what’s wrong with this.”

It was a statement, not a question and Jude knew she stared at him blanking, utterly confused, but the sudden rage darkening his gaze as he glared at her twisted her stomach and she shook her head. “Brent, I made it—”

“Don’t lie. You know I hate it when you lie.”

“But, Brent, I—” He pushed the cup closer to her lips and she winced when the coffee brushed the seam of her mouth and she opened it, the ceramic clinking against her teeth as the coffee slipped inside to burn her tongue and she gagged, pushing at the cup, his hand.

Jude bent at her waist, coughing as she struggled to catch her breath and Brent stood over her, his breath coming in ragged pants as his control slipped away and he growled, “Well?” still coughing Jude shook her head, unable to respond to him and Brent sighed, “Did you use two cups of the grounds or one?” Blue eyes widened as Jude realized her mistake and Brent’s narrowed. “That’s what I thought!”

He punctuated the statement by spinning and tossing the mug against the far wall, denting the drywall and spilling its contents across the room to paint the floor a pale brown. The mug tumbled, skipping its way down the wall to fracture against the tile floor and Brent turned back to her and, like always, the slap caught her unaware. The right side of her face tingled and her neck arched with the blow as she stumbled back against the sink. Damp hands caught her, she slipped, banging her elbow with a jarring intensity that numbed her arm left arm and Jude shook her head, bringing it back up to find Brent directly in front of her once more.

A hand circled her throat as she sputtered, “Brent, please! I’m s-sorry,” her tongue felt thick and useless in her mouth and she blinked through her tears, eyes widening as Brent jerked her up with his grip on her throat and bent her back over the sink. “Brent?” Her voice faltered when she saw him lift the nearly full coffee pot with his free hand and she began to struggle.

Feet kicking, pushing herself towards him until the first scalding spray struck her chest and she screamed. “Brent! Stop!” Her spine bowed, arching up from the sink as another wash of hot coffee hit her and she turned her face away as speckles flew up to burn her chin and cheeks. A sob escaped her as he emptied the pot’s contents and then released her and Jude slipped down the cabinets to sag against the cool tile. She hiccupped, her hands fisting against the floor as Brent stepped into her and she flinched back when she felt him lean over her and without warning she stood.

The top of her skull striking his chin and Brent swore, stumbling back from her and feet slipping over the wet floor as he struggled to remain upright. Jude ignored the sudden nausea that rose up from her stomach and the darkness that dragged at her vision as she palm slapped Brent’s chest, shoving past him and struggled towards the front door and freedom.

Pain made breathing a very real issue as she forced her abused chest to move up and down and the still hot coffee saturated her night-shirt, pressed tight to her flesh, nearly suffocating. Brent’s bellow of her first name gave Jude the incentive she needed, the burst of speed that she needed as she reached the door and fumbled with the dead bolt before yanking it open to stare slack-jawed at the black cloud that hovered in the doorway.

The darkness rippled and flexed before surging forward to gag Jude as it stole its way inside of her and down her throat. She shivered at the sudden temperature change as it slipped over her face and there was a pressure on her eyes as more cold slipped inside of her, numbed her before blue eyes blinked and Jude found herself turning back towards her fiancé, who was still bellowing for her from his place in the kitchen.

Brent’s nostrils were flaring, the strong line of his jaw molten with color from the force of him clenching his teeth as he took a slow step forward and ordered, “Shut the door, Olivia.”

Jude felt her mouth stretch into a sweet smile as her right hand reached back of it’s own accord and closed the door and she screamed, but no sound came out, her legs didn’t respond to her orders, pleas to run and Jude whimpered and shivered against the cold engulfing her and urging her down. It lulled her to simply fall away, to fall asleep and when she woke up the world would be right and she would be safe.

She wasn’t alone, not anymore and she lost herself to the cold and the dark.

I'm seriously so excited for this fic, Ava, after what you've been hinting. Any idea when we'll be seeing it?
I have two scenes, that I know of, left to write and I'm a thousand words into the big fight scene so I hope to have it done by July. I'll be relieved when this story is finished and I shall attempt to resist this series until after I've completed the third hell!Buffy story. :)

I have too many series.
I think you got your words confused. This is not a 'sneak peak' this is a 'goddamn tease'. I'd like the rest please, ASAP: :)
Goddamn tease? Good, that means the first scene does hook the reader. :D

I'm hoping to have it completed and posted by the end of July.

I love that you've posted this. Does that mean you will be continuing? Nudge, nudge! ;)
Holy Sh*t! I saved this to read when I had no distractions and boy am I glad I did!

How long do we have to wait for more?