Frederick touched a hand gingerly to the dead girl's head. "Yes. Definitely deceased." He straightened, looking about the room as if she were playing hide and seek with him. "Where's her spirit? Julie was quite a powerful magician. She should be up and about, causing havoc." He looked back down at the corpse. "It's certainly not in there. I'd have felt it."
"Something to do with her recent affliction, I expect." Jasfoup sank back onto one of the kitchen chairs. "I'm sure she'll turn up somewhere." He bent to look under the table. "Lucy? I'm sure you can come out now. Julie's gone bye-byes."
"Ju-ju gone." Lucy crawled out from the forest of table legs and without a glance at either of the adults walked around the body to the fridge.
"What are we going to do?" Jasfoup looked at the ghost.
Frederick shrugged. "Put an advert in the paper? Live-in babysitter required? Good rates. Supernatural denizens welcome."
"I meant about Julie, though you're quite right. We do need a surrogate mother for Lucy. She'll soon be at the age to understand her mum is a vampire. Gillian will have to close herself off from her."
"She won't like that."
"She knew it would happen. This is just a bit sooner than we expected. She's growing up far faster than I expected her to."
"A by-product of being nephilim." Frederick patted the demon's shoulder. "It was the same with Harold. He was a genius with mathematics at three. He could calculate betting odds by the time he was five. Clever little bugger. Of course, Ada wouldn't countenance betting in those days." He sighed. "Pity, really. I could have done the whole manor up on a week's accumulator."
Jasfoup watched Lucy take out a whole block of cheddar and sit on the floor, holding it like a chocolate bar. "Look on the bright side."
"If you'd become a gambling man the stairway to Heaven might never have come."
Frederick shrugged. "I missed it anyway."