I'm back!!! I know, I've been M.I.A. for a few days and some people we're like whhhaaaa? Where be our Nighty Poo, but fear not. I was just taking a 'life break' for a minute. I'm back though *and* I'm here to give you your vampire fix. I hope you all love this chapter because it's 'that chapter'. The one you've all been dying for. The one I've been dying to write. I've also included the playlist that I used to write this chapter. Some of these songs, I listened to on repeat way too many times to be legal. So enjoy the random mix of tunes that brought this chapter to life. In case you were wondering, 'that scene' was written to Change by: Deftones. ;) You're welcome.
Also, a big thanks to Carrie, Christine, and Sherryn. You ladies are amazing and I appreciate all the help. :D *claps hands in excitement* OKAY! Here we go...*squeals*
Dan and Rowe Chapter 5 Playlist
One - Filter
Change - Deftones
Be Quiet and Drive (Far Away) - Deftones
I Stand Alone - Godsmack
Pet - A Perfect Circle **Night Sniggers**
The Noose - A Perfect Circle
Ugly - The Exies
Pink Maggit - Deftones
Battle Axe - Deftones
This is the thing - Fink
When I'm Small - Phantogram
The Way - Bonnie 'Prince' Billy
Everlong - Foo Fighters
Bloodsport -Sneaker Pimps
Spin, Spin, Sugar - Sneaker Pimps
My Favorite Game - The Cardigans
Destiny - Zero 7
Angelica - Lamb
So There I was - DeadMau5
Is There A Ghost - Band Of Horses
Parachutes - Coldplay
Parachutes - Coldplay
DAN AND ROWE CHAPTER 5
Maggie picked up Hannah and George cradled a shaking Emma. Together the pair walked down the underground hallway and went into the small kitchen to do some comforting. Without saying anything to each other, Maggie and George shifted the children onto their hips and began to work their magic. Taking care of a household was an art form that they both had years to master, an art that currently involved break away cookie dough in the oven and hot chocolate on the stove. Maggie gave George an appreciative smile as he took Hannah from her and brought both girls to the table.
“Emma’s cold,” Hannah said softly and wrapped an arm around her sister. Emma had yet to say anything. She was so scared and she wanted her mommy so badly that she couldn’t even voice it. Instead she snuggled into the nice man with the pretty silver hair and green eyes. Although she had never had a grandpa, George still felt like one. He was big and smelled like the cleaner mommy used on the table in the kitchen: like lemons.
“Emma, are you cold sweetheart?” George peered down and Emma burrowed under his arm. Her little hands clutched at his jacket, making him melt inside. He’d never had children or been honored with grandchildren, but these two little girls were what he had always imagined. Their curly black hair and bright green eyes gave them the appearance of fragile little dolls but George knew better. To still be aware and functioning after what they had been through tonight proved just how brave they were. George hugged them both tighter.
“S’okay,” Emma whispered as George rubbed her back. His eyes widened when he heard her little voice and he smiled. Hannah reached for her reached for her sister's hand.
The three of them stayed locked together as Maggie stood watch over her newest cubs. The compound was beginning to blossom with children and Maggie had to wonder when more would make an appearance. It was only a matter of time, but what then? She worried, thinking of what poor Isaac and Nanette had been born into, and prayed that these children would grow up safe in the coming times. From what had been said downstairs, things were only going to get worse. The night's attack proved that. Could they really handle more babies coming along during a war?
Maggie looked to George. His green eyes narrowed and it was then that she knew; even the weakest of their kind would give their lives to protect the children. If that was the mentality among all the vampire, then the enemy was in for a rude awakening.
With his back to the door to keep Frank from running out, Yuri crossed his arms and stood guard. “Sit down, Frank. You’re going to tire yourself out.”
“And I’m not already? I want to see my girls damn it! Those are my babies and they’re freaked the fuck out. You saw Emma. She’s probably a wreck.” Frank put a one hand to the wall and the other on his hip. This was so messed up that he couldn’t even process what he’d seen tonight. Those weren’t zombies out on the lawn tonight; they were vampires. And now these creatures had taken his girls from him. Frank was getting pissed and his muscles were clenched in a painful way. Where was his Blondie? What the fuck had these people done with her? Or worse, what if she wasn’t coming back? No, no, no, Frank shook his head. That couldn’t happen, not to Jess, not to his heart.
"What about Jess? What’s happening with her? I want to see her."
“Calm down!” Nina snapped and slammed a fist into the table. Her power manifested itself in the air and her eyes flared to life. Blazing red irises like the flickering of flames penetrated every soul in the room—the dozen guards, Yuri, everyone--with her anger before settling on Frank. “Everything I do, I do with a reason and you would be wise not to question me. I, a Queen, risked my life, to secure you and your family, mere humans. 'But why?' you ask. Because to my family, your lives are precious. Your safety means everything to us and we have shown you nothing but that simple truth. I understand you are scared and that you still struggle to comprehend everything, but the sooner you buck up and get with the program, the sooner you will understand that this is for your safety!”
“Our safety?” Frank muttered, and slid into an armchair with a shudder. He couldn’t seem to shake the uncomfortable sensation nagging at his body. Was that coming from her? Was she really what she said she was: a vampire queen?
Nina dug her nails into the table to try and reign in her power, but now that she was angry, there was no stopping it. “I just got off the phone with Knox. You know him, don’t you?”
“Yes.” Blue hair, scary as fuck, and tats that looked like they were done by the devil himself; yeah, he knew Knox. Frank had always been skeptical about the guy. Sure, he dealt with felons and spooks twenty four hours a day, down at the bar, but there had always been something about Knox that went beyond even that. Was he a vampire too?
Nina said, “He just called to say that my guards have Jess. That is the reason I wanted to see you in private, without the girls. I didn’t want them to hear what I have to say.” She fell into her high-backed chair and rubbed her glowing eyes. She hoped like hell that Hill was on his way. She was feeling like shit and couldn’t seem to make the ache stop. Dealing with Frank was just making the feeling worse.
Frank’s blood ran cold. Slowly he stood and walked over to Nina’s desk, where he was met with two guns in his face from her guards. Holding his hands up in defense, he took two steps back and they lowered their guns to waist height.
“Please, no. Just don’t tell me she…”
“Whatever you’re thinking Frank, it’s worse than that.” Nina cursed under her breath as Frank stumbled back—only gaining his balance with the help of the guards. Yuri could feel the human’s anguish and his heart went out to Frank. Even though he was a tough son of a bitch, had that been Yuri’s Katrina instead of Jess, he’d feel the hand of death up his spine as well. Fuck that, he’d beg for death.
“No,” Frank moaned and fell to his knees. “No!” He screamed and a gut wrenching sob poured from his throat. His palms hit the Oriental rug and his forehead followed as Frank mourned the loss of the girl that got away, the mother of his children, the only female he’d ever love.
Even as the ache swelled over her body, Nina felt the human’s pain as if it was her own—the two not so different at the moment. With a twinge of regret for raising her voice in Frank’s time of need, Nina went to him on the carpet and got to her knees. “She’s not dead, Frank.”
Frank heard Nina’s words, but he figured it was his imagination, trying to cope as his insides were being shredded with heartbreak. “Be quiet,” he growled to himself. “Just shut up.”
Nina dared to touch Frank. The man’s entire body was rigid like a dangerous predator ready for the slightest provocation. Her fingers met his damp hair and Nina gasped when Frank’s eyes cut to her with a snarl. She tried to reassure him. “She’s not dead.”
“What did you do to her? You people, what you do with my Blondie?” His words were like death on breath as he perched into a crouch and slapped Nina’s hand away.
“We got her out, but the damage was already done. Those things that attacked you tonight? Frank? They are vampires that thrive on hunger and destruction; it is what their bodies crave. Jess is now one of them.”
Frank shook his head and backed away. “Jess is one of them?”
Nina's power began to fade, as the ache in her gut turned into sharp pains. She clutched her stomach and tried to speak, but the pain grew worse. Falling to the carpet, Nina rolled into a ball with a gasp.
“Your highness? Nina!” Yuri shouted. The guards helped the queen onto her back as she closed her eyes tight and writhed. Yuri repeated, “Nina, can you hear me?”
Minutes passed, and the sounds from Nina’s mouth turned into tones of pure agony.
“What’s happening to her?” Frank scrambled away as the queen began an eerie howl of pain.
“Shut up! Someone take him to the girls and watch him like a hawk. You.” Yuri pointed to the nearest guard and grabbed his collar. “Get Hill on the phone and tell him to step the fuck on it. If those doctors know all about us, they better prove it! I want them here now!”
“Ye…yes, sir!” The guard rubbed at his neck and ran out the door with his cell already dialing.
Nina felt like she was being grabbed from the inside and stabbed a dozen times over. So hungry, so painful, so something else that it didn’t make sense. Vampires didn’t know this kind of illness or ache. Even a wound healed within minutes or an hour at most. This was different, and the queen felt her consciousness slipping as the feeling of fire in her body grew to epic proportions. On top of that, she could feel Hill screaming in her head. He knew she was in trouble.
She saw his eyes one last time in her mind. He was coming for her, and that was all she had to hold onto as she went to another place—somewhere where it didn’t hurt anymore.
“My queen?” Yuri whispered in horror as the body in his arms went limp. “Nina?”
“What is it?” Maggie ran into the room. “The guard said that—oh my God!” Maggie rushed to Yuri and dropped to her knees. Her hands immediately sifted through Nina’s curls to see her eyes closed and her lips open.
Yuri turned his dark eyes on Maggie like a little boy lost. “I think…she’s dead.”
~~~~~Downtown, Caldwell Business Center and Luxury Suites, High-Rise~~~~~~
Tate opened the door to one of the four penthouse suites in Oliver’s high rise and stepped aside. Rushing into the room, Rowe clutched Dan to his chest seeking out the bedroom.
“It’s down that way,” Tate called after the fearsome vampire.
Oliver pulled him back into the hall and shut the door to the suite. “It’s not worth trying. He probably didn’t even hear you.”
Tate sighed into his mate's chest. “I just feel so bad for them. Are you sure there isn’t anything we should do?”
Knox grunted as he passed by the couple. “You go back into that suite, Creampuff, and Rowe will rip your face off.”
Blaze carried most of Knox’s weight, as he was still weak and needed to feed. A slender man with long shiny hair followed them in a daze. He sighed like air was the most erotic thing he had ever known. Knox grabbed his arm, pulling him close with a roll of his eyes.
“Who is that?” Oliver questioned.
Knox shifted his eyes to the boy, and with Blaze’s help continued down the hallway. “This is dinner. Don’t worry about it.” He was tired and hungry as well, and he was done playing "Let’s explain everything to the human."
“That’s a human, Knox,” Oliver countered.
Knox snarled over his shoulder. “No shit, Sherlock. What did you expect me to eat, a Twinkie?”
Blaze smiled nervously and said, “Just ignore him. A Twinkie does sound kind of good right now, but I’m sure this guy will taste even better.”
Knox had been close to him for the entire ride downtown and the walk into the hotel, and had refused anyone but Blaze’s help for the last few hours. Not really sure what to think about Knox, he kept his cool. They’d work whatever crazy tension that was leftover from earlier out in good time.
When just the three of them were left standing in the last suite down the hall. Knox slowly sat down on the white leather couch and groaned. “Shut the door Blaze.”
“So you’re good then? You need anything before I go?” He spared a glance at Knox, who narrowed his eyes.
Knox challenged Blaze. “I said shut the door. I didn’t say leave. Now shut the fucking door and come sit.” Putting his hand on the flat surface, Blaze took a deep breath and pushed the door closed, only to stare at it for a minute.
“Come here,” Knox called again. The sound made Jonah hard. That shouldn’t have been the case; he should’ve walked into that hall and closed the door behind himself, but who was he kidding? The minute Knox had said he was going to fuck him, Blaze’s mouth had watered. The blue haired giant meant it too. Even weakened, he could feel Knox’s gaze through his body like the Royal was already fully juiced again. “Blaze,” Knox gave a warning.
Blaze heard the rustle of fabric, the small gasp from the human, and then a moan that was so sweet it made him hungry. With a deep breath, he closed his eyes and then shook off the innocence lingering on his thoughts. He was a man just as much as Knox. Albeit not as strong, but just as deadly and just as dominant as the Royal who sat on the couch with his leather-clad thighs spread wide. Fuck, Knox’s bare chest was ripped. Blaze’s equally dark eyes were like slits as he soaked up the image before him. The young, twenty-something that they had snagged from outside a club, threw the shirt to the floor and crawled between Knox’s legs—peeling off his own shirt off like he was unwrapping a gift. A long curtain of shimmering black hair whipped back as the man slithered up Knox’s legs and kissed the hard bulge that was barely contained by leather and thick buckles.
Knox held out a hand while giving Blaze a look. A look that said don’t fuck with me but wasn’t that just the sexiest thing Jonah had ever seen? The weapons tech let his trench fall to the ground and unbuckled all the straps and weapons that covered his upper body. A pile was made on top of his trench until Jonah was left wearing nothing but his own pants and boots—his pale chest and arms on display for Knox, who was looking at him like he was made of cheesecake.
Delicate, warm fingers captured Knox’s aching cock, as he watched Blaze take step after step. After all that had happened that night, tonight, Knox needed to relax, and forget all the violence. He needed to rid himself of the nagging feeling that he should go back to the compound and check up on someone. No, no, no, he tensed. Check up on everyone, he sighed and settled with the correction.
Most of all, he needed to get his rocks off. After he spanked the shit out of this doll who knelt before him, he needed to bury himself deep inside someone grown and powerful. Tonight he’d take what he wanted and let the beast loose. Just for tonight, he’d forget that his brother had rotted into nothingness at the hands of Nigel; that he’d been so stupid as to not check his car for traps in the first place. Tonight he’d forget that he’d failed and hopefully he’d remember to forget in the morning too.
Wrapping a hand in the human’s hair, Knox pulled his head back and stared into wide brown eyes. “I want you naked and back on your knees.”
“Yes,” the human whispered, kicking his shoes off.
Blaze sat next to Knox. “A little harsh aren’t you? He doesn’t know what he’s doing.”
Knox grabbed him by the chin. “Did I tell you to speak?” He hissed and his eyes swirled gold.
“Then don’t.” Knox growled and told the now-naked human, “Undress him.”
“Hold up,” Blaze interjected, but received a slap across his chest that left a hiss on his lips.
“I said to shut the fuck up.” Knox pulled Blaze into his lap roughly and pinned his arms behind his back—trapping him. “Take his pants off,” he instructed to the human.
The man slowly pulled his boots off and then his pants, letting a nicely cut cock slap back up at Blaze’s stomach. Blaze's skin was flawless, the color of vanilla; an unmarred canvas, meant only for Knox. Both vamps looked down at the human, who moaned and began to touch his own skin under their gaze.
“Now mine,” Knox said, in a deep voice and the human licked a slow line up Knox’s leathers. Lifting his ass with Blaze still in his lap, Knox let the young man pull his pants down and off his feet after his boots had been removed.
This time, when Blaze settled back into Knox’s lap, nothing separated them. Knox’s thick dick slid under Jonah’s ass and Blaze shivered. “Please,” the human begged, running his hands up Blaze’s bare legs.
Knox growled and hooked his arms under Blaze’s knees and brought them up to his chest. “Fuck, Knox!” He grunted and slammed his head back into Knox’s shoulder as his ass become the star of the show.
“What did I say about speaking?” Still holding Blaze’s legs in the crook of his arms, Knox brought his fingers to the guy’s nipples and twisted roughly. His arms were pinned, his legs trapped, and his ass effectively spread and waiting for the human to torture. Knox growled. “I said to shut your fucking mouth. Didn’t I?”
“Yes,” Blaze moaned and closed his eyes. He hissed when the grip on his nipples became harder. Knox twisted until the pain led into a loss of feeling. Only then did he let go for a few seconds, letting the nubs swell and all the blood rush back. When Blaze’s nipples were once again bright red, Knox twisted more. Blaze let out a sharp scream.
“You’ll listen better next time, won’t you?” Knox was so in control and he felt his health returning. Still craving blood but needing this more, he grazed his fangs over Blaze’s shoulder and flicked his eyes to the
human. No words were needed. Knox’s irises swirled with instructions for the young man. The dark-haired male crawled between Blaze’s open legs.
“I’ll be…” Jonah struggled to submit. He was just as much of a fighter as Knox, he could be—oh fuck. “Yesss,” he moaned, giving in completely. The human grabbed ass cheeks and pulled them apart, before licking a solid line up his crack and over Blaze’s hole.
“You think you can decide what happens tonight?” Knox dug his nails into Blaze’s nipples and rubbed his dick into the ass on top of his lap. “Well you can’t, because tonight, Blaze, I own you. I own these.” Knox twisted again and Blaze turned red with humiliation, betraying himself with a moan. “I own this ass, and I own the blood that’s mine for the taking. Do you understand me?”
“Fuck yeah,” he hissed, trying his hardest to push his hole closer to the human’s tongue.
“Make sure he’s nice and wet,” Knox hissed and the human spit onto Blaze’s ass. A nice soft tongue lapped thoroughly at his hole and he lost his ability to think. A finger filled him suddenly, causing Blaze to lose it. He writhed against Knox and searched out the erection that was just under his fingertips. Knox breathed against Blaze’s skin and watched the goose bumps form. “I knew you’d beg. I want to hear you say how much you want it. Tell me you’re my little slut and I’ll consider giving you what you want. Say it."
Another finger pushed in roughly, the human now putting his lips to Knox’s dick and swallowing it down. “Oh my God,” Blaze hid his face in Knox’s neck and tried to breath. He could smell the blood under the vamp’s skin, he could taste the sweat in the air—the taste of his own arousal thick on his tongue. “Fuck me, please.” He licked at Knox’s neck. “Fuck your little slut.”
“Beg harder,” Knox growled and his fangs lengthened until they sliced across his lips. Lifting his ass, Knox shoved his cock down the human’s throat and held his pretty, brown-eyed gaze. “Aren’t you jealous, my little cock slut? Is this human taking what you want so badly?”
Blaze hissed and his eyes dilated with dark charcoal swirls that reflected his baser desires. He wanted blood. He wanted the human’s neck. He wanted sex and he wanted it hard. He arched as much as he could against Knox and snarled. “Fuck me please! Fuck your slut hard. Oh fuck, please!” Blaze was beyond ashamed at the words coming out of his mouth, but his dick didn’t care. From between his legs, the human’s brown eyes appeared—his lips covered with something slick and glossy.
“Since you asked so nicely,” Knox replied with a lick of Blaze’s neck. Looking at the delectable human that was rising to his feet, he willed the male to bend and grab Knox’s dick. "That’s it boy." Knox licked his lips and sighed with pleasure as his cock head rubbed over Blaze’s hole.
“Please,” Blaze begged on a whisper and turned his head away. The need to drink and have Knox inside of him had peaked. He was about to lose all of his humanity and give in to his true beast. He would take the human by force. He let his head fall back and howled as Knox penetrated his ass. Slowly the human forced every inch of Knox in until he was fully seated. There were no words to describe how Blaze felt. Never having given over in this way, he shuddered at just how trapped he was, how much he had to let go to give to Knox like this.
“This is nothing. Just an intro my little slut,” Knox said and dug his fangs into Blaze’s shoulder. Lapping at the sweet liquid that rushed to the top, Knox watched the human get back on his knees. With a nod of his head, the human took Blaze’s dick in his hand.
Knox began to move, causing Blaze to keen and moan as if he were a wild animal. Feeling his strength returning, he rolled his hips as slowly as possible to torture the other vamp and make him feel every little movement.
“That’s it, scream for me,” Knox hissed. The human sat back as Knox lifted Blaze up by the knees and slammed into his ass from underneath. Blaze was in another state of mind; his beast right on the edge, his nose seeking out the sweet nectar that the human teased him with. He screamed over and over as he was filled to the brim and then left hollow before the cycle started again. He was on overload, howling in torture as he couldn’t reach his own swollen cock. “Your body is mine to play with, mine to fuck as I want to!” Knox roared and slammed Blaze down on his length again, listening to the shuddering noise that came from the other vamp.
On the floor between their legs, the human moaned and sucked on his fingers before putting them behind his back and rising onto his spread knees. Blaze growled as he watched that arm move back and forth, those fingers where he wanted to be. Thrashing now in Knox’s steely arms, he let out a roar of his own—showcasing his deadly fangs.
Knowing Blaze was limited in his restraint at this point, Knox commanded the human onto the couch. The slender male climbed up and hooked a leg over Blaze’s lap and he sat down—his weight nothing to either of the larger men. Dark hair pooled down like liquid onyx, shimmering under the harsh industrial lighting of the ultra-modern suite. Those brown eyes, ringed with reflected light, begged for some play time.
Entranced or not, this human wanted it and Knox could feel the need all the way into the male’s subconscious. There were no limits being crossed and certainly not any innocence being stolen this night. Yeah, this fucker wants to play, so let's play. Knox snarled, and locked eyes with the human. Licking his lips with desire filled eyes, the slender male held Blaze’s cock straight up and lowered himself.
“This is how I take my dinner, slut. Better than a fucking Twinkie,” Knox declared before sinking his fangs into Blaze’s neck. The human fell forward and began to move up and down in a sinful dance in Blaze’s lap. Warm, tight, and slick for him, Blaze moved his hips in time with the human.
Knox had no problem holding Blaze up while he gave it to him good. Rich, thick blood painted Knox’s tongue as he took long, slow pulls. So sweet and succulent, Knox’s eyes flickered red with desire.
The sound of Blaze’s vicious snarls punctuated with a few spine tingling moans was the best kind of soundtrack to Knox’s dinner. Even better were the sounds of Blaze’s fangs breaking skin and the human’s startling orgasm as the red haired vamp sunk his dick and teeth deep. The human gripped Knox’s shoulders, the three of them connected; the human feeding Blaze, Knox replenishing through Blaze, the human feeding on raw sex. The more he drew from the vamp, the more Knox could taste the human’s flavor inside Blaze. Tingles ran along his back and thighs and Knox knew he was healed completely. If he wanted, he could lift the two males in his lap and really get to work, Knox smiled around Blaze’s shoulder.
His eyes narrowed. Yeah that was exactly what he wanted. Breaking away from Blaze’s skin, Knox pulled back with a gasp and let the vamp’s legs go. “Hold him,” Knox growled, leaning back to release Blaze’s arms. Immediately Blaze grabbed the human and pulled him close—the skinny male like a mold to his chest—while he was pushed to his knees on the floor. Laying his precious blood source on the gleaming marble, he continued to feed and pump in and out of the male underneath him, only breaking away from the man’s neck when Knox pushed inside his ass again.
Blaze scooted his knees open farther across the cool marble and flexed his ass, clenching the thick cock inside of him. Knox gripped his hair roughly. Blood dribbled over his lips and down his chin and Blaze’s beast roared. His eyes swirled with a fiery pleasure, and hips slammed forward, his dick bottoming out inside the screaming human.
Raising his hand, Knox brought his open palm down hard onto Blaze’s ass. The red-head roared and slammed into the human so hard he scooted a foot across the floor. Knox narrowed his eyes. This was what he wanted: the control, the power over another.
“Cum for me slut,” Knox hissed and spanked Blaze harder. His hand wrapped around Blaze’s neck and squeezed. The vampire’s ass tightened so hard around Knox’s dick, he had to close his eyes. “More,” Knox growled.
Blaze rose on his knees, still buried deep in the human’s ass. He choked a bit as Knox’s fingers gripped his neck, suffocating him in the most delicious way. A surge of heat traveled up his spine, a blazing tingle ran through his balls, and Jonah wordlessly cried as he came so hard that he blacked out momentarily. His chest hit the human’s when Knox released him.
Gripping Blaze’s hips with a vicious hold, Knox covered his cock with that ass one last time. His release caressed every inch of the other vampire’s hot channel before Knox gave a shuddering groan. Hand prints, red marks and bruises began to disappear from Blaze’s body before Knox’s very eyes. It wasn’t enough for Knox but it would have to do. Blaze wasn’t ready for the real show—not yet anyway.
Blaze regained his breathing on top of the human who was now in a complete state of bliss. A sticky pool of semen coated Blaze’s stomach, but that’s not what was on his mind. What had he just done? Had Jonah really let his control be taken from him? Why had he given into Knox so quickly? Flinching involuntarily, Blaze felt Knox press his chest close.
The Royal inhaled and whispered, “It doesn’t go beyond this, Blaze. It’ll never be anything more than this. I can’t.”
A small part of Blaze felt rejected, but the larger part of him knew that before they’d walked into this room. They weren’t mates, he’d know if they were. But something about the heavy weight of Knox on top of him and the way the male’s breath felt against his neck was so inviting. Maybe he’d been out of circulation too long and this small bit of passion was foreign enough to stir these strange emotions inside of him. Yeah, that had to be it Blaze sighed and nodded against the human’s chest. “I won’t ever fall in love with you, Knox.”
Knox’s eyes turned away. Although that was what he wanted to hear, Knox couldn’t help but think about the future. Would someone ever love him? “Good. That’s…good.”
Rowe laid Dan on the bed and brushed his golden curls away from his listless eyes. Dan hadn’t moved, hadn’t spoken, hadn’t made a sound above his own breathing since Rowe had first held him tonight. It was as if Dan had shut down completely—his batteries were finally drained of life. In a frenzy to get Dan to safety, Rowe had yet to just look his mate over, so for the first time, Rowe saw the evidence trauma. Dan was a mess. After all, he was human, and that meant cuts and scrapes, bruises and bleeding. Nigel’s stench still lingered, along with his blood and Rowe had to close his mouth and will his fangs back into his gums.
The rumbling stomach, combined with the feeling that his veins were on fire was horrible. Rowe began the process of untying Dan’s tattered leather pants and pulling them off. He jerked his hands back when Dan whimpered and turned his head away embarrassed. It was the first sign of life Rowe had seen all night and he leaned forward. “Love? Where does it hurt?” Carefully, Rowe laid his hand on Daniel’s arm and rubbed up and down—the skin scratchy instead of soft with the crust of dried blood.
In his own world, Dan knew he was safe, but he was still scared. He knew it was Rowe, but Dan couldn’t seem to make the fear go away. A parade of images kept replaying in his mind: Jess was a monster, covered in blood with eyes of a demon; Nigel touching him, playing with his skin; Keith slitting Jess’s throat; Nova’s transformation, and then—Rowe forgot him. The man Dan had fallen in love with, the man that he’d been sure would come just for him, had forgotten him completely. Rowe had been more interested in revenge than…
Dan covered his face with his hands. He couldn’t think that way anymore though. Rowe wasn’t human, he couldn’t help it. Rowe had come for him, hadn't he? Dan could feel his mate's rage and pain when they’d stormed the building earlier. Rowe loved him, they were mates in all things, but Dan still didn’t even know what to say. With what little strength he still possessed, he hooked his pinky around Rowe’s larger finger and held on.
Keeping his tears in check, Rowe closed his eyes and took a deep breath. Filled with a silent bout of joy, Rowe bent and pressed his lips to Dan’s shoulder. “Daniel, please. Say something to me. I need to hear your voice, just once. I love you so much, pet. I’ll do whatever it takes. Anything."
Dan’s scent brought Rowe’s fangs out to play once again. He sat up quickly, but smoothly as to not startle his mate. Pulling his hand from Dan’s, Rowe smoothed his palm over his love’s hip before pulling the leathers down. Rowe thought controlling his hunger was hard, but not staring at Dan’s beautiful body was harder. Covered in dirt or blood or yellow paint, Rowe didn’t care. Dan was the most gorgeous man he had ever seen in his entire existence.
Dan curled in on himself. The air-conditioned room made the hairs on his body stand on end and the sounds of Rowe taking his own clothes off made Dan swallow hard. He loved that man with everything he had, but he didn’t think he was ready for what Rowe wanted. Rowe was hungry, Dan knew that. Being in someone’s arms for a few hours, you could get a good look at their mouth, and Dan had seen the fangs that Rowe tried to hide. He’d felt the tension in Rowe’s body, heard his stomach growling. So when Rowe’s strong arms wiggled their way under Dan’s body and lifted him into the air, Dan knew what he had to do. But he needed a minute to find the strength.
Pulling his knees to his chest in Rowe’s arms, Dan hid how hard he was getting. How was that even possible, Dan wondered with a tremble. Then again, being near Rowe was like a drug. A drug Dan could taste in his mouth, something he could feel poured over his skin like water, like liquid heat injected into his veins. Rowe was Dan’s cure for the poison killing his mind, to the poison choking his heart, the pain swelling inside of him. He waited out the building intensity in his heart and let Rowe place him on the floor of the bathroom. His mate was gentle, caring and Rowe’s eyes searched Dan’s face for any sign of distress.
“I’ll be right back, pet,” Rowe murmured and kissed Dan’s cheek with a caress to his shoulder. Even a few feet away from his mate was an almost unbearable distance for Rowe, but he had to get a hold of himself. A few deep breaths, a moment of clarity, something was needed to get Dan’s scent out of his nose. Fear and anxiety interlaced with Rowe’ already crucial concerns. What if he hurt Daniel when his need became too much to handle? What if he gave over to the craving and scared Dan away? What if Dan never forgave him for being a monster? What if Dan didn’t want him anymore? Oh God, he put his hands through his hair and paced. Should he have Knox outside in case things got bad?
A chorus of noise and the scent of fresh blood—both vampire and human—caused Rowe to narrow his eyes at the other suite. Even though he couldn’t see through the wall, Rowe knew what his best friend was up to. Sex, blood, raw desire flooded through the wall and slammed into Rowe like a ton of bricks. "Fuck you. Knox," Rowe hissed as his stomach growled and his cock strained between his legs. Rowe cringed. No, he wouldn’t do that to Dan. Shaking his body out, Rowe made a few grunts and shook his hair. “Okay,” he spoke to himself. “I can do this.” With a roll of his neck, Rowe went back into the bathroom.
Dan was curled on his side when he heard the slap of Rowe’s bare feet across the Italian tile. The gentle squeak of the tap turning on, the soothing rush of water, and Rowe’s deep breathing kept Dan from screaming his need to his mate. He’d watched Rowe from the open door, Dan knew how hungry Rowe was. What Dan hadn’t told Rowe was that he could feel the vampire’s need like it was his own. Granted it wasn’t as strong, but it was there. With that feeling of need though came the length that was swollen between his legs. He couldn’t will it away no matter how hard he tried.
It was wrong to be aroused after what he had been through, but then again, he didn’t understand how this mating worked. And if he was being honest, Dan knew Rowe had no idea what he was doing either. But Dan did know that Rowe had changed everything he knew to be with Dan. For once in his life, Dan felt safe with someone. Dan knew Rowe would never beat him or hurt him, scream at him or abandon him to the world again. Letting someone be in pain when you could fix them was selfish, and even as broken as Dan felt, he still needed to care for his mate. Just like Rowe had painstakingly cared for him all night.
The water had finally warmed to Rowe's satisfaction and he moved away, allowing the tub to fill. Carefully bending over Dan on the floor, he pulled his fragile mate into his arms and fought the urge to breathe in the clean scent that permeated through all the dirt and ash along Dan's skin. Like perfume, the smell of fresh grass and clean mountain air filled the room. Rowe's gums throbbed—his hunger reaching a high that was teetering dangerously over the edge of his resistance. But this was his pet, his everything, and Rowe refused to succumb to his beast when Daniel needed him the most. No matter how hungry he was.
Rowe focused on the task at hand and his eyes targeted Daniel's blank stare instead of his naked body. He held Dan tight as he climbed into the large tub and sank down into the warm water. With shaking hands, Rowe situated his mate against his chest before turning his head away. He stared at the wall and listened to Dan's heart beat—the sound being the only thing Rowe had left at this point. A tear fell, then another, and another from Rowe's eyes. How could he make Daniel better? How was he to fix something so broken?
Thin arms wrapping tightly around his waist startled Rowe's focus back to the tub. A choked intake of breath cut through the silence of the room before Dan began to sob uncontrollably. “I’m sorry,” Dan gasped. “I’m so sorry.” His inner battle had finally reached his lips and he tightened his hold on Rowe’s body. “You’ve been so…so good to me.”
Rowe’s hands cradled Dan to his body. A shudder ran through him, and he laid his head on top of Dan’s. His heart rate sped up like the gallop of a wild stallion. Rowe’s eyes swirled like the rarest of gems in the brilliance of sunlight. He tried to keep his hiss to a whisper. “You have nothing to be…” He inhaled and shivered when the clean scent filled his body like it was physical—a touch that caressed Rowe’s from the inside and hardened his cock. “…sorry for. This wasn’t you’re fault. It was never your fault, pet.” Tears ran down Rowe’s cheeks. Taking a few deep breaths through his teeth, Rowe knew he was losing control. His need to feed and claim his mate seconds from being fulfilled.
“I’m no good at this. I know you won’t hurt me. I know that!” Dan cried and gripped Rowe’s shoulders. “But I’m so fucking scared of your world. Do I belong there, Rowe? Only because you’re there, I tell myself. Will it always be like this? Yes, it will. I know that Rowe. Help me make this all less scary. Help me understand what you are. I need you so bad right now but I shouldn’t want you after that. After
what they did to me and fuck, I need you.” Dan was out his mind. Rowe’s needs reflected within his own body. He was Rowe and Rowe was him.
Rowe pulled his head away from Dan and opened his swirling eyes. Dan went still, his breath leaving him at the sight of Rowe’s gaze. Hypnotic, like fingers against his skin, Dan leaned forward for more. Closing his eyes, Dan inhaled Rowe’s skin. His mate smelled like Cinnamon and home. “Rowe,” Dan whispered—his lips tasting of salty tears. He cut his green eyes up to Rowe, who was struggling to breathe. “Feed, from me.” Even though his body ached, Dan rose to his knees and straddled Rowe’s lap. Water lapped around the tub.
Watching his pet settle onto him was something Rowe would never forget. It was the moment that Dan made it known that he was in this for real. This was his mate, forever and no one would take him away, no one. Dirt and blood washed from Dan’s skin as he moved, but Rowe saw past that. He found strength in the feeling of his mate’s skin against his, the feeling of their hard cock’s sliding together, in Dan’s beautiful eyes. “I don’t want to scare you. I can’t guarantee…” Rowe snarled and tilted his head back. His fangs filled his mouth.
“I can feel how much you want it. I need it too. Please, Rowe. Take from me.” Dan was about to plead further, but Rowe’s firm hands cupped his ass and squeezed. A moan bounced off the walls but Dan didn’t even realize it was his. Rowe's touch put him in another universe entirely. Fingers pulled his legs wider, settling the thick cock between his ass cheeks. A hot tongue traced from his collarbone to his neck, where Rowe’s lips sucked at his skin.
Dan couldn’t seem to catch his breath, gasping as something began to build in his body. Rowe’s hands moved up, framing his body before straying to every inch he could touch. He hesitated on Dan’s neck with a flick of his tongue. The smell was too much, the sweet taste of Dan’s flesh revealed under all the other grime that was being washed away.
“I love you, pet,” Rowe hissed as softly as he could, before his fangs sank deep into Dan’s neck.
With a shuddering moan, Dan frantically tried to find a grip on his mate’s body—his own body flooded with a state of euphoria that he’d only ever known once before. This time was so much better, so much more intense because tonight was it. It was the beginning of the path of no return.
“Yes, yes. Rowe, oh,” Dan chanted. Their bodies began to dance together. The water sloshed all over the floor as Rowe held Dan tight, thrusting into him with each pull at his vein.
Human blood had never tasted so good to Rowe. He’d had his fill over the years, but ever since he’d tasted that of his mate, everything else tasted like trash. Dan’s arousal added to the life giving essence, making it even sweeter on Rowe’s tongue. To have Dan naked and making those such delicious noises was equivalent to a full body fuck.
He drew back his fangs and whipped his head up with a growl. Swirling eyes met green ones and Rowe his crushed his blood coated lips to Dan’s—sharing his favorite taste with his mate.
A coppery tang mixed with cinnamon inside his mouth made Dan want more. He was lifted out of the tub, his legs wrapping around Rowe as water fell from their bodies.
Dan's head fell back, and he let out a tortured moan as Rowe growled in his ear, “Mine.”
“Yes. Always yours, Rowe.” Dan clung to his mate as he was carried back into the bedroom. Bedding that cost more than Dan’s house, was tossed to the glossy floor. “Rowe, please!” Dan cried, the need for Rowe bringing tears to Dan’s eyes. He was slid across the silk covered mattress by Rowe’s powerful thighs pushing off the floor. Those dangerous eyes narrowed above him as Rowe pushed his legs wider and held them there.
The prince dropped Dan onto the mattress. Then he threw back his head and roared his claim. No one would touch this body ever again. No male would dare to touch his mate.¶
His cry rang true to the entire penthouse and beyond. Every vamp within the city heard this kind of proclamation. At that moment, hundreds of vampires stopped what they were doing and turned to listen to their prince take his mate. Rowe felt them as they walked out into the night from their homes, or climbed onto their roofs. They even stopped their feedings to stare out at the night sky. Some were in awe that such a playboy had found his other half. And the rest? Their hearts were renewed with joy and purpose. If someone like Rowen Gerard, the Blood Prince could narrow his life down to one man and one heart, then there was hope for them too. They had not been abandoned. Their prince had returned.
Rowe felt regenerated at the sight of his mate unfolded so erotically to him. With a flick of his eyes, Rowe tuned out his people and snatched up his mate’s greedy hands. Dan begged for his touch, arched his back. Rowe’s cock could not have been harder had it been made of stone.
His shadow loomed over his mate, creating an anxiety that had been born long ago in his head. Closing his eyes, Dan swallowed and chased away the nightmare that was his past. This new shadow was a good thing. It meant Dan’s lover was going to touch his body, to taste him, if he was lucky. Like Rowe had read his mind, lips pressed to Dan’s shoulder, a tongue peeking out to wet Dan’s skin. The tips of sharp fangs pierced the delicate flesh. The ecstasy of Rowe’s bite too intense to think about anymore. Crying out in need, his hand went to his cock, but it was grabbed before he could touch himself.
A growl rippled through Dan’s ear and Rowe dragged his mouth up to Dan’s. “I will pleasure you. My hands, my lips, my hot…” Rowe hissed down Dan’s face. “…thick, cock inside of you. I will make you cum, my mate.”
Bringing Dan’s hand to his mouth, Rowe flipped it over and laid a kiss in the palm. Moving down he flicked his tongue over the silken skin at Dan’s wrist while snaking his other hand closer to Dan’s twitching cock. A cry broke free from Dan as that stray hand found its target, and Rowe groaned with pleasure while slowly gripping Dan’s shaft with a little tug.
Having Rowe touch him so privately was something Dan never thought he’d experience. All of the arguments between them, his own past, and the violence which was an unfortunate part of the vampires' world; all of it was worth living through for this.
“Kiss me, please.” He reached out with his free hand to Rowe. “Please.”
Rowe didn’t have to be told twice, his hand began to work his mate's cock harder while his lips sealed over Dan’s. They explored every inch of each other's bodies. No hesitation lingered. This man was going be by his side for eternity—If Dan could go through with that.
Rowe pulled back a little with a frown as he felt something dark flit through Dan, but his mate pulled him back down with a seeking tongue. Whatever it was had passed, and Rowe growled as he felt a small hand wrap around his cock. He was about to argue that tonight was for Dan, when the smaller blonde licked his lips and close his eyes with pleasure. Who would argue with that?
Rowe brought his mouth to Dan’s nipple and sucked it into his mouth with a nip of his blunt teeth. Cranking up his own hand, Dan tried to lube up Rowe’s erection with the glossy fluid already leaking from the tip, but it wasn’t enough, so he brought Rowe’s taste to his mouth and completed his life. Dan could’ve died happy after he sucked the thick cinnamon flavored mess from his hand.
“Holy shit,” Rowe rumbled, releasing Dan’s nipple from his mouth. He watched Dan suck his fingers into his mouth one by one with a satisfied hum. “Fuck me, pet.” With heavy-lidded desire, Dan’s eyes registered Rowe moving down his body and automatically his hands went to that fuck me hair that he loved so much. Gripping Rowe’s hair tight, he tried to express the sensation of the hot mouth consuming his cock, but failed. Instead left with the feeling of love and gratitude; Rowe was once again taking care of Dan’s needs before his own.
Now that his mate had been fed, Dan knew Rowe was able to draw this experience out as much as he wanted—for hours or even days. He chose days, if the wet silk haven of Rowe’s mouth was anything like the feeling of that cock inside of him. That image alone finally brought a groan from Dan. It was raw, like gravel, as all of his pent-up fear and grief breached the surface. His monsters had been exorcised. His love for Rowe, and the way his mate touched his body, sheltered him from the outside world. Here, in this bed, nothing but safety and heat lingered.
Hollowing his cheeks, Rowe sucked his way up from the base of Dan’s cock. The hands in his hair tugged. His eyes narrowed and trained on his lover’s face. Tears of joy fell down his cheeks while a small smile played on his lips. Rowe sucked harder, his saliva drenching the length in his mouth. Dan’s eyes locked on Rowe and he drowned within their swirling irises. That sapphire glow entranced him, caused him to pump his hips up. Rowe wanted his unbridled passion. He wanted his mate to let go and stop thinking; to crawl out of his own skin with pleasure.
Taking Dan to the root again, Rowe pulled back up slowly and sucked hard at the head. Dan screamed and his heart pounded. He was going to give Rowe exactly what he wanted. His trust, his flavor, his
heart, everything that made Dan whole, came flowing from his cock in a violent rush. His body quivered; his breath hitched; his eyes rolled back.
Dan’s fingers locked up trying to reach for something that had been there the whole time. Rowe.
The Prince of Blood swallowed the delicious sweetness down his throat. Why would he ever waste a drop of his mate’s precious flavor? With a final bob on Dan’s cock, Rowe popped off the head and licked his lips with a growl. Lifting Dan’s knees, Rowe pushed gently on the back of his thighs and lowered his head again. His tongue teased Dan’s balls—outlining their shape with a moist trail from his lips.
Hands going above his head, Dan pulled at the thin curtain that hung at the headboard. The stitching slowly ripped as he cried out. It was only a few seconds worth of release, but to Dan? It felt like an eternity of eye-rolling, muscle-clenching, out-of-body experience. Soft shimmering material fell from above and Dan wrapped his hands up in the yards of fabric. The soles of his feet smoothed over Rowe’s broad shoulders while the prince spread Dan’s ass wider.
Seeking out that tight entrance, Rowe took his time torturing his pet. The sharp cries and twists of Dan’s torso were an honor to experience.
There were so many things that Rowe had never felt before! Pleasuring his mate without constraints or other concerns, without another care in the world, was one of them. When his tongue finally flicked over Dan’s ring of muscle, Rowe felt his pet’s entrance twitch under his mouth, heard the cries from those cherry red lips.
"Fuck," Rowe groaned and pulled Dan’s skin tight with his thumbs—his tongue going to work like a machine.
A long, vocal release filled the room as he Dan locked his body, moving his ass against that tongue. Forgetting where he was, Dan he only had a mind for Rowe. The end of the world crashing down around them, and yet it could not have stopped this from finally happening. Dan needed Rowe. He needed him now. His human mind was not able to comprehend such fierce emotions. Being bitten by a vampire was euphoric, yes. But giving your blood, and then being licked and sucked by a vampire? Holy shit, Dan’s mind screamed on overload.
Sensing Dan’s orgasm riding out, Rowe’s fangs descended once more, and he itched to get another taste of his pet. Licking the soft skin of Dan’s inner thigh, Rowe felt the fingers in his hair tighten and the cries grow louder. With a shudder, Rowe bit into Dan. His eyes rolled behind his closed lids, and his nostrils flared, as he drew another delicious swallow of Dan’s blood he felt stronger than ever. Dan’s other thigh locked Rowe in place and his back arched off the bed.
“Rowe! Fuck me. Oh God! Please,” Dan screamed. Inhaling deeply, with his eyes closed, he heard a growl against his thigh and he felt the fangs pull from his flesh. The pain of those sharp teeth marking him made Dan hard, Rowe flowed through his every fiber of being. Seconds turned into forever as Rowe crawled up Dan’s body. The prince’s choppy blonde bangs hung between his narrowed, swirling eyes.
“Yes!” Rowe hissed, sliding his dick up and down the moisture he had created with his tongue. Looking down into Daniel’s eyes, he saw the need. Hell, he could feel it inside of himself. Rowe also saw something else that made his hiss become a moan. He saw the love in Daniel’s gaze, how safe Dan felt in his arms, like nothing could hurt Dan him. Rowe would never find this connection with anyone else. Good, he thought. He didn’t want anyone else. “I love you, pet. I love you so fucking much.” He pushed Dan’s legs up and aligned himself with Dan’s entrance.
Taking a deep breath, Dan slid his hands up his vampire’s arms. “Please,” he whispered. “Please, my mate.” Eyes locked, sapphire and the color of fresh grass, and with their breathing so loud they were sure the city could hear them, Rowe pushed inside of his pet. Every muscle in his body flexed and his fragile mate’s widened eyes. Fangs hinted in the light, dangerously sharp as they bit into his bottom lip—blood dripping down his chin. Dan’s body was flooded with a fever, a wild, untamed passion. He pulled Rowe’s face to his and licked the blood away much to the vampire’s pleasure. His bottom lip sucked into Dan’s mouth, Rowe’s cock surged into the welcoming heat, his hips powerful in their force.
Letting go of Rowe’s lip, Dan sought out his lover’s back. Nails clawed into the skin there and Rowe’s lip pulled back with a snarl. He wanted more, wanted to give it to Dan like he was meant to, but he couldn’t push this. Dan was already enraptured, and that was enough. As a human, Rowe could hurt him if he wasn’t ready. Instead, Rowe closed his eyes and turned his head to keep his beast in check. His hips were moving slow, but deep, keeping his cock warm and slick inside of his love.
Dan could feel the hesitation in Rowe. Even closing his eyes, he could feel something was nagging the vampire, but there was nothing he could say to ease Rowe’s mind right now. His voice consisted of nothing more than gasps and pleas for something deeper, something harder. Rowe felt Dan pleading in his mind. His mate could feel the hold-back within Rowe. Even human, Dan could still feel it.
"Shit," Rowe muttered.
“Rowe! Stop holding back, just do it.” Dan grabbed Rowe’s chin and dug his fingers in. “We’ve waited so long. I love you, Rowe.”
Tears flowed from Rowe’s eyes as he nodded and intertwined his fingers with Dan's. He thrust harder, harder, and harder until Dan voiced his pleasure right into Rowe’s open mouth. Their tongues slid together, seeking out a taste of the passion within them.
A tingle broke out within Rowe’s body, his spine went rigid with tension, and his mouth drifted from Dan’s. His fangs etched a small line down Dan’s neck, seeking out the pulse he had already targeted. Dan’s tantalizing scent beckoned Rowe’s mouth directly over the rhythmic beat under the skin.
“Yes, yes. Do it, ah fuck!” Dan’s voice got higher and higher. He felt his own cock swelling to life again, which would have been impossible in his previous life, but with Rowe in this life? It was very much a possibility and one that he didn’t question.
Hard as fuck abs rubbed over Dan’s erection as Rowe pumped in and out of his ass. This was it. This was his new life—one where Rowe would fill him every night, where his mate would hold him tight and protect him while he slept. Dan shivered and moaned. Yes, he thought, Rowe is it.
Rowe felt something else squeeze inside of him. It was small at first but when he realized it was Dan’s happiness overpowering his emotions, Rowe broke apart. His beast roared and took Dan’s neck. His hips surged forward like a vampire’s were supposed to.
Dan held on as he shared in the bliss. His mate had let go and fuck, was it good! He ran his hands over Rowe’s back and let his mate feed. Again and again Dan was taken until he felt something beyond the overwhelming pleasure; a tingling in his spine. His cock felt ready to burst but Rowe beat him to it. Pulling back from Dan’s neck, the feeling in Rowe’s spine spread to every inch of his body, and he cried out, thrusting in Dan one last time. Dan shattered and came—Rowe’s cock hitting his prostate hard with his last thrust.
Rowe was speechless, his voice refusing to work as he filled Dan with his release. His head dipped and his face nuzzled into Dan’s neck as the weight of what they had finally done hit him—how intense it was, how much he realized he needed Dan. Rowen Gerard, blood prince of the mother-fucking vampires, needed his little mate in a way that made him shiver like a child. Dan was more than his heart. Dan was now his everything. They were connected in a way that mingled between their bodies, a line to each other that existed in a different dimension.
Holy shit, Rowe thought, gently pressing a kiss to Dan’s skin. His body gave a few more jerks before Rowe settled onto his panting mate.
Dan shifted a little until Rowe rolled onto his side. Their eyes were fixed, simply watching each other breathe in and out. Rowe lifted his hand and smoothed away Dan’s curls. “You will never know,” Rowe whispered. So deep in thought while looking at Dan, he hadn’t even realized.
Dan swallowed and cleared his throat. “Know what?” He grabbed Rowe’s hand and pressed it to his heart.
Rowe’s eyes dilated a little as he felt Dan’s heartbeat. He smiled a little. “How much you mean to me. About earlier tonight…” He exhaled and felt the tears prick his eyes.
“I don’t want to talk about that.” Dan murmured, squeezing Rowe’s hand for some safety from his own mind.
“I’m sorry, pet. Please don’t be upset.” Rowe went into protector mode when he saw the dead look in Dan’s eyes.
“I just don’t want to talk about that now.” Dan scooted into Rowe and sighed. The vampire prince wrapped his larger frame around Dan, creating a cocoon with his body for the love of his life.
“Okay, my love. It’s alright, just stay here with me.” Rowe rubbed Dan’s back while resting his chin on Dan’s head. His eyes staring, but focused on nothing, Rowe realized that Dan was not okay. What they did just now was beautiful and needed, but sex would not fix Dan. He felt Dan’s arms go around his body and he nuzzled close. Would Dan ever recover from this? Would he ever laugh and yell at Rowe again? Would he ever sing into his hairbrush again? Rowe kept his breath even as he cried. Would his pet ever be himself again after this?
Rowe prayed to God for all that he was worth. Please let Dan be okay. Please let Dan him live again. Rowe closed his eyes and held onto his now sleeping mate. He felt the deep, rhythmic breathing against his chest but he was far from sleep himself. His eyes were wide open, his beast ready for anything. He would protect his mate from the world, even if it meant that he would never sleep again.
~~~~~~~On the other side of the city~~~~~~~
The whirr of the chopper’s blades started to die as the dark skinned man stepped onto the roof. He extended a hand to his mate—securing the other male on the ground before checking his surroundings. Waist length braids shifted around his body with the clacking of hundreds of small black beads. A three thousand dollar suit shaded a dove grey covered his massive frame. Yellow eyes like liquid canary diamonds glowed in the moonlight.
Not a single cloud littered the night sky but the moon cast a strange glow, and Thierry felt a storm brewing; he was certain of it when he looked down and saw a pool of blood on the sidewalk at his feet. Pulling his dress shoe from the puddle of red, he cast a bitter gaze to the group before him. The vampire nearest him dropped to his knees, sacrificing the pricey pocket square from his jacket, to wipe the mess from Thierry’s shoe.
Beyond the lack of care put into his welcoming party, the yellow eyed vampire noticed they had at least brought him a gift. Bleeding, groaning, and writhing in a circle comprised of his brethren, was one of Nigel’s guards—one Thierry recognized from his last visit. Looking at the pathetic excuse for a vampire, he thought of where he stood, and what came next.
He had waited for this moment for a long time. Thomas was finally gone. Nigel had done exactly as he’d hoped—fuck himself out of the spotlight—and now he had been called in. Three really was the magic number, Thierry concluded. That storm he’d felt brewing for a long time now, was here. He would bring the chaos, the real end game. He would not lie about who he was, he would take, and he would gain. This city would know who he was, but he unlike Nigel, he would work the vamps over slowly. By the time the queen and her pack of dogs felt the effects of his reign, the city would already be so deep within his pockets, there would be no undoing his work.
“Thierry?” Anton called him from his thoughts. His mate cut him a side long glance and smiled. “Why don’t we leave dis mess? I am tired.” Thick, dark, and intoxicating, Anton’s accent was like breathing in another world.
“Mmm, yes. Clean dis up and save him for later.” Thierry growled down at the man still on his knees. The vampire scattered away, bowing his head in apology. A man dressed in all black made sure the bleeding guard was bound properly before carting him down the stairs.
“But sir, we still have,” the Italian enforcer spoke on his left.
Thierry held the man’s gaze, watching the words die on his lips. “Nothing to finish here. We have come a long way to fix what you have fucked up and dis is how you treat your superior and his mate? Hmm, what you say, Anton?”
“Say he makes it up to us,” Anton replied. “Teach him obedience.”
“So say, it is done, my love.” Thierry pulled Anton to his side.
The Italian gulped, shaking his head. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean nothin by it. Uh, we have your rooms ready.”
Anton wrapped his arm around his larger mate with a sex filled gaze. “He knows right where his bed is then, how convenient.”
“Do what?” The tanned Italian crossed his arms over his lean chest. “I don’t live here.”
Thierry looked to the assassins next to the Italian. They shrugged and grabbed the man on either side. Smart choice for the newly turned, at least they knew where they stood. “Hey! What the fuck? Let go of me, what are you doing!” He screamed and struggled.
“We apologize for the rude welcoming. That wasn’t our intention.” The ass kisser with the pocket square bowed his head, trying not to watch the Italian being man handled like he was for dinner. “Whatever you need is yours to take.”
“I didn’t know I needed your permission, but,” Thierry paused with an elbow from Anton. Ah yes, manners first, Anton always corrected him. “Thank you.”
“Certainly. Right this way. John, please shut him up.” Pocket square directed to one of the guards holding the Italian. A handkerchief was shoved in his mouth to muffle his cries for help. The small pack of guards descended the steps into Thierry’s quarters, but he paused with his mate to savor the moment in peace.
Thierry fingered his mate’s jaw tenderly. “You think you like it here, my sweet?”
“I’ll be fine anywhere you are. Don’t worry bout me. Dis is our dream, Thierry. Dis what you work so hard for, and I am so proud of you.”
Thierry growled, rubbing a hand over Anton’s zipper. “You say things like that. You know what you do.”
“Yes,” Anton hissed. “I do.”
“You are a demon, Anton.”
In response, he pulled from Thierry’s arms, sending a heated look at his mate. “Come to bed with us, my mate. I am so hungry.”
Thierry went to his love. “Me too.” The double meaning of his reply was not lost on Anton. His Thierry had almost starved for the chance to lead, and now? Here they were, like a dream.
They shared a smile as they opened the penthouse entrance—the screams of tonight’s entertainment welcoming them home.
~~~~~~~The Roof, Caldwell Business Center and Luxury Suites~~~~~~~
They had looked at him as if he was madly ill, but Nova needed some time to himself. His simple request had not been so simple to his brother, or the Guards or, well, anyone. Eventually Knox had let the beautiful red haired vampire cart him away. There were a few lingering looks over his shoulder, but Knoxtian went to get some rest. As much as Nova wanted to be near his brother, he wanted to feel free more. Many long years being kept underground, being sheltered from years of history, and not being able to see the night sky had taken a toll on him. To know that tonight he didn’t have to go back into that room in the tunnels and be bound to a wall was something he didn’t yet grasp.
To feel his skin smooth and undamaged under his fingers brought tears to his eyes. Nova silently cried as he looked out over the cityscape. Like the night sky had blanketed the land, thousands of different colored lights penetrated the dark. Beautiful as they were, they also came with these painful sounds and awful smells. Nova covered his ears and hooked his legs over the edge of the roof. The material of his new pants was soft against his thighs as he settled in. He liked the pants at least. These sweat pants and his T-shirt. So many new things to see and learn, Nova exhaled slowly and let his hands fall away from his ears. The blaring noise that had come from somewhere below, traveled farther away, and the red swirling lights had disappeared. Thank you Lord, Nova bowed his head in gratitude for the small reprieve. Fingers combing through his clean, wet locks, Nova drew his knees up and balanced on the ledge. Settling his chin on his arms, he watched the new world with tired eyes. He’d fed again this evening, so that was not the problem. The problem was he just wanted to sleep. Sleep and wake up back where he had started. Not here, not in this place of chaos and complexities beyond his imagination.
“Nova?” King reached the top stair to the roof and watched the great vampire of old.
His long black hair blew in the wind and his size was formidable like Knox’s. So it was strange to see Nova as he was now; he looked like a little boy--someone sad, in need of a hug. King could relate to that. He wanted to go home to his Chloe and his Nanette, and hug them stupid, but King had gotten the call from Yuri; the call that put everyone on edge and left Valjana to deal with the drama here. Nina was in a bad way and Hill had taken off like the speed of a bullet to be with his mate. Things just kept getting worse. The fact that any of them had to yet to hear back or to choose who got the pleasure of telling Rowe, was spreading tension like wildfire.
Nova didn’t turn around or so much as move to acknowledge King. The Italian rubbed his eyes and moved closer onto the roof. “You plan on staying up here all night?”
“Yes,” Nova replied. “I wish to see the sun.”
Those words caused King to stop in his tracks and think. Nova hadn’t seen the sky in hundreds of years. Not the moon, not the stars, not the sun—nothing. King suddenly saw Nova in a different light. He wasn’t just Knox’s brother, or a pure bred Royal, or any of that crap. He was a victim and the worst one out of all of them. While everyone ran around flitting about over Dan and Nina—not that they weren’t important—it seemed like everyone had forgot what Nova really went through.
“Nova?” King approached the brick ledge and crouched down. “Would you mind if I watched with you?”
“You wish to see the new day?” Nova finally looked at King.
“Uh yeah, the sun rise, if that’s cool with you.” King sat down on the ledge and let his boots dangle over the edge.
Nova’s brows screwed up in confusion. “Cool? I am fine, but thank you for your concern.”
A smile broke King’s lips into a grin. He patted Nova’s back. “Cool means good or something that you like.” The Guardian watched Nova struggle to understand. “So, is that cool with you?”
“Cool? Huh.” Nova shook his head and smiled for the first time in forever. He liked King. King was a good man. “Yes, that is cool with me.”
“Thanks.” King kept a rhythm against the brick with his heels, still watching Nova. “I know you probably want me to be quiet and let you take this all in, but are you okay, Nova?”
With a sigh, Nova rested his head on his arms again and eyed King. “You wish the truth?”
“Yeah buddy. I’m a good listener. Chloe would probably disagree, but she’s a different story.” King smiled and Nova’s eyes swirled a little—he loved to hear the good things. Nova liked the way King talked of his mate, of love and chivalry that still existed.
Nodding his head, Nova looked back out over the roof tops. “I can still feel his hands on me. I am still scared of him, a lesser vampire than I. Even though I know he is bound, and chained, and being kept in close regard, I am scared of Nigel. He is in my thoughts, inside of me, his taste is on my tongue, his voice is in my ears. To imagine Dan in my place—I cannot.”
Nova shook his head as King’s hand rubbed circles on his back. “Even I, a warrior, begged for death many times over. To think of what would have happened to that poor male and his sister, it is…it is horrible!” Nova started to cry when King’s arm slipped around his shoulders and squeezed his arm.
“Nova, Nigel can’t hurt you anymore. He’ll never touch you ever again. He’ll never hurt anyone again. You’re free bro. You are nobodies slave, not now or ever again. I know that it’s going to take some time. Shit, it’ll take a fuck ton of time to get over something like that, but you gotta let us help you, Nova. You need to let Knox in. He was so worried about you earlier and so are we. All of us just want to help you. I just…I just wanted you to know that.”
King sighed as Nova wrapped around his chest and let it out. A grown man’s cry was almost more heartbreaking than that of a child, because for a man to cry, a warrior male at that, shit had to have been beyond horrible. King could only imagine what Nova must have endured. In Nova’s ear, King bent down and whispered, “You’re still the warrior you always were. He could never take that away from you, Nova. If he had, you’d already be gone. But, you’re not. You’re stronger than he could ever be.”
Nova cried harder hearing King’s words. This man that just met him had already discovered the deepest fear of his heart. Was he still a man among his people? Was he still worthy of his Queen’s love? Would his brother take him back? Nova let himself fall into an abyss of what if’s and give in to the tears that he had been holding back for hundreds of years, while King held him steady in the new world that he already despised.
“Nova,” King whispered excitedly. “Hey. Nova, look.” Tears still ran down his face as Nova turned his head. He sat up slowly with King’s arm still around him. His eyes refused to believe it as the same burning glow that he had always loved so much. But his mind knew the truth and Nova sniffled. Together with his new friend King, Nova watched the new day rise from the other side of the earth. A tiny bit of hope clamored to the surface. Even in this ugly world, the sun was still beautiful. Some things would never change. Nova bowed his head in quiet prayer, giving thanks for such a glorious gift.
~~~~~~~The Compound, The Queen’s Private Rooms~~~~~~
The sun glowed like amber bursting from the earth’s seams as Hill slammed the breaks on the S.U.V. He ripped his seatbelt in two trying to get it off and kicked open the door. “Shit, Hill!” One of the guards rushed out of the vehicle behind him, but was no match for the Guardian. Hill’s thighs pumped like the beat of his heart. He couldn’t feel her. Nina, hold on baby, Hill ran as fast as his supernatural speed would allow. Her smell was stronger down the hall and Hill took the grand staircase in under a second—leaving several groups of Royals with widened eyes in his wake.
“Nina!” He screamed. “Nina!” The door opened at the end of the hall and Yuri’s face appeared. Hill snarled, his beast kicking in, his mate in a room with another male.
“Oh fuck,” Yuri murmured looking into Hill’s eyes. It was the only thing that came out of his mouth, before he was slammed into the floor, with a large hand wrapped securely around his neck. Hill growled with his fangs bared, his eyes going red.
“Hill!” Maggie dropped to her knees behind Yuri’s head and dared to touch the Guardian in his state. “Hill, Yuri was helping Nina. He has his own mate. Katrina, remember?” Her eyes pleaded with his. Hill looked down at Yuri, who was turning a dark shade of red. Choked noises wheezed from his mouth. His eyes bugged under the Guardian’s weight. Hill’s hand released from Yuri’s neck and the Russian gasped for air. He was powerful, but no match for a fucking Guardian who was scared for his mate. That shit was untouchable. “Come with me. She’s over here.”
“Nina,” Hill hissed and stood over Yuri.
“Yes,” Maggie murmured, holding out her hand to him. “She needs you, Hill.”
“Nina?” His voice softened and he took Maggie’s tiny hand. Forgetting all about Yuri or any of the two dozen guards that stood around the large bedroom, Hill went to his mate. “Oh, no,” he breathed as he sat on the bed. “My Nina,” Hill choked and grabbed her hand—her hand that was warm. “Nina?” Bending down, he felt her breathing against his face and Hill’s body collapsed beside her.
“Everyone out, except them,” Yuri instructed. Guards reluctantly filed out of the room and put their weapons away. A few staggered their positions against the walls of the hall—men who refused to leave their queen when she was vulnerable. Rolling his eyes, Yuri watched the group of scientists pushed into the room like lambs to slaughter. “You better find out what’s wrong with her, or I swear to God, I’ll suck you dry like a Capri Sun.”
“Yuri!” Maggie swatted him on the arm. “You will do no such thing. Now shoo. You’re scaring the poor things.” Mouth going wide, Yuri stared at the little housekeeper then closed his mouth. You didn’t backtalk Maggie, or disrespect her in any way. It wasn’t done.
“Fine, but,” Yuri tried, but Maggie put her hands on her hips, and gave him ‘the look’. “Alright!” Turning for the door, Yuri shot one last heated glance to the doctors that was full of warning.
“Yuri,” Maggie’s eyes narrowed.
“Okay! Geez.” He slammed the door and left the room.
Maggie checked on Hill, then held out a hand to female who stood in front of the others. “I’m Maggie.”
“I’m Suarta, Suarta Nahjim. This is Dr. Lisa Frenzette.” Suarta pointed to the mousy blonde with the glasses. She raised a hand and peeked around Maggie. “Dr. Ian Hansley is my assistant,” Suarta said with a hand towards the skinny man towards the back of the group. He reached between the girls and stuck out his hand.
“It’s a pleasure, Maggie.”
“What would be a pleasure, Mr. Hansley, is if one of you could take a look at her.” Maggie turned to look at Nina. “She collapsed a while ago, and at the time she wasn’t breathing. We just couldn’t find a pulse either. She wasn’t wounded while fighting, but the men said she looked pale, sick even. That’s when she started to fall and clutch her stomach in the office. Then she just passed out.”
“Theo?” Suarta turned to the group’s physician with a renewed sense of duty. His dark eyes mirrored hers. It was time they undid the wrongs they had forced to do.
“Hello, Maggie. I’m Dr. Theodore Jones, but you can call me Theo.” He put his warm hand in hers and smiled. Maggie felt the heart this man possessed, the eagerness to help another. He guided Maggie to the bed and waited patiently for Hill to notice.
When the Guardian looked up with a low growl, Theo didn’t shake or run away. He simply took a step forward and gave a polite nod of his head. These doctors really had studied them, Maggie cocked her head in awe. “I understand it’s going to be hard to trust me right now, Hill. But, I need to touch her and make sure she’s alright. I would like to know what happened and what I can do to prevent something like this from happening in the future. Are you willing to let me examine your mate?” Theo kept eye contact with Hill as he sat on the bed slowly.
Hill looked to Maggie. She nodded. “Fine, but I stay with her, and if you so much as think of injecting her with anything, I’ll rip your throat out.”
Theo nodded before removing his thin jacket to reveal the pale blue scrub top against his dark skin. “May I?” Theo fingered the top of the blankets that were pulled up to Nina’s neck. Hill scooted back, but stayed close as the doctor rolled the blankets down delicately. “So, she wasn’t wounded, but had she fed before she went out to fight?”
“Yes,” Hill hissed.
“Good. That eliminates starvation or any form of dehydration. From our studies, a vampire will experience dehydration, before their make-up considers the body to be starving. If your blood intake is diluted with water, did you know you can trick the body into thinking it has been replenished? Well, just for a few more hours, but if you’re in a bind, water will do the trick.” Theo smiled and pressed his fingers along the sides of Nina’s jaw then down her neck.
“How long have you been doing this research, Theo?” Maggie sat in the chair next to the bed as Suarta and her colleagues carefully approached the other side of the bed.
“Five years now, but Suarta has been with the project longer. I was only brought on when they started using vampires as lab rats.” Theo paused with disgust. “A parade of innocent lives that I had to watch tortured for science. Nova was the worst, but the hardest to watch was Moira.”
Keeping his gaze locked on his patient, Theo paused to reflect on his shaking hands. A deep breath was all it took for the good doctor to regain his composure. Feeling nothing swollen or out of place in the jaw and neck that usually indicated a bloodlust flare up, he moved lower.
“Moira?” Maggie sat up straight.
“Yes. Nigel brought her to us about a year ago. She was terrified, her mate was dead, and our boss wanted her tested. He was convinced that something special made her pregnant when he couldn’t produce an heir with any female he tried with. The testing he made us do was cruel, most of it not even scientific in nature, more so for her torture than anything.” Theo felt along Nina’s collar bone, feeling for any broken bones that might have been twisted, preventing a proper heal. Small wounds left unattended for hours on end could send a vampire’s body into shock. All their strength focused on that specific area during the healing process, inevitably draining their batteries.
“Oh my God,” Hill whispered in horror. “Isaac’s mother was tortured?”
“Isaac? That’s his name?” Theo looked at Hill as Suarta sat on the bed.
“You have him here? He’s okay?” Suarta covered her mouth. The other doctors seemed just as emotional. “We tried our best to care for him, but between Thomas and Nigel, it was almost impossible to make sure he okay.”
Looking at the heartfelt longing in their faces, Hill knew he’d been wrong about these humans. They weren’t hoping to create some freak experiment out of the compound, they were genuinely concerned about the vampire race and wanted to fix what they could with science. For this group to care for Cade and Micah’s child when the mother couldn’t? Those kind of actions spoke volumes to Hill—the kind of volumes that ran along the lines of never leave a man behind and protect the helpless.
“Mags, would you?” Hill rubbed his eyes.
“Theo, you keep going here. I think this group needs a field trip.” Maggie stood and bent over Nina. Laying a kiss on her forehead, the housekeeper straightened. “Come on. Let’s give them some privacy. I know you want to watch, but this isn’t a classroom, and I think there’s someone that would like to see you downstairs.”
“You mean? You would?” Suarta stood. “He’s really here?”
“Yes.” Maggie winked at Hill. She didn’t have to say another word. The pack of five followed her out into the hall. “I’ve got my cell on. Call me, please.”
“I’ll call you, and Mags?” Hill faced the woman that had really grown on him during his short time here. “Thank you.”
“You’re very welcome, honey.” Softly she shut the door, leading the others down stairs to where Chloe was watching the infants.
“Would you care to or should I?” Theo allowed Hill to make up his mind. Pulling down the blanket to reveal his mate’s naked body would be a big step in trust for Hill. Really though, did he have a choice at this point? For the good of his mate, and because he had a gut feeling that Theo was gentlemen, Hill nodded and sat back.
“Thank you Guardian. I appreciate that,” Theo said with care. He made quick work of pulling the blanket to Nina’s hips. A tingle ran under his hand when he pressed his hand to Nina’s stomach. His eyes fixed on a familiar red discoloration around the queen’s breasts. Her power still fought to protect her sleeping body. The doctor kept his discomfort and grimace to himself. Theo lowered his ear to Nina’s stomach.
“What are you doing?” Hill tensed forward.
“Listening,” Theo replied. Concentrating beyond the neutral sounds of the female’s body, the doctor finally heard what he was looking for. Her heartbeat echoed through her body, a vampire’s organs stronger than those of humans. Still though, he listened. Louder than Nina’s own heartbeat was a rhythmic thumping that made Theo sigh in relief. The queen was not dying. Not by a long shot.
“What for?” The Guardian narrowed his eyes, but kept his growling in check.
The doctor kept his eyes neutral as one beat began to compete with the other.
Theo sat up. He looked at Hill with a trained, relaxing smile. “For the sound of a heartbeat.”
“Don’t you need a stethoscope for that? Or maybe even to listen over her heart, instead of her stomach? What the fuck kind of doctor are you?”
“The kind that is about to tell you that your vampire mate is pregnant.” The doctor crossed his arms and waited for the inevitable.
“What?” The question was quiet, shocked. Hill looked between Nina and Theo, over and over. “No way, you’re wrong. She can’t be, we’ve only had a few weeks together.”
“I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that it only takes once.” Theo covered Nina back up. “Or remind you that your body is very different than that of a human. You’re her mate, and our studies show that true mates have a higher fertility rate than those that aren’t. Add to that fact that you’re a very strong male for your kind, and it was bound to happen. With all the elevated testosterone around this place, I wouldn’t be surprised if Nina’s not the only one.”
“But that’s just. No fucking way.” Hill shook his head and scratched his head nervously. “She’s sick. Vampires can get sick right?”
“No, I’m afraid they can’t, unless she had entered a state of bloodlust. Then she’d be feral by now. Obviously that isn’t the case.” Theo paused to watch the other man deflate slowly. “Hill?”
“What! What do you want now?” Hill was starting to crack. No fucking way was he about to be some baby’s daddy. He’d never had kids and with what was happening in their world right now? No way would his mate be some target for a fucked up lab rat. “A baby,” he whispered in shock.
Theo put his hand on Hill’s and squeezed. “No Hill, not a baby. Two.”
~~~~~~~~Downtown, Caldwell Business Center and Luxury Suites~~~~~~
Cade ended his call to J.J. for the third time, and put the phone on the table. Ghost was resting, the feeding had worked. Now Cade waited for his own mate to wake up. He stared at the glow of the screen for a few minutes, before pushing his chair back, and getting up. Windows took up most of the room. All of the floor-to-ceiling curtains were drawn to expose the sun rise that slowly bathed the city in a warm, syrupy orange. Planting his feet in front of the largest glass pane of all, Cade palmed the window and rubbed at his eyes. He couldn’t sleep, he refused to take from Micah, and his mind just wouldn’t shut off. He turned his eyes back to the room.
The flat screen caught his attention. It was the same breaking news that had been on all night and all morning. “Thanks Bill. This is Larry Gonzales reporting live from the corner of Shelby and Twentieth. We’ve been keeping you updated on the waterfront explosion that rocked the industrial district just hours ago. City officials still have yet to give a formal statement on the matter, but police and private security are working together to keep the area blocked off for the public’s safety.
As far as we know, sometime around midnight, a gas leak caused a network of underground pipes to burst in front of a group of abandoned corporate offices owned by Fredrick Johnson of the Johnson Financial group. When we contacted the company for comment we were unable to reach anyone. We’re under the assumption that they wish to deal with this discretely, but we hope to hear something from them soon.
No casualties have been reported from the blast, but search and rescue if still sifting through the building to be sure. Authorities are calling this an accident and denying any claims of foul play. We’ll let you know when we have more. Back to you Bill.” Cade watched the police push back the crowds of public on lookers with a certain look in their eyes. Every one of them was under a vampire’s watch. The ‘private security’ was comprised of six managers and over fifty guards. A gas leak was their story and they were sticking to it.
What the hell were they going to do now? Where did he lead his men from here? How could he go back to the compound with no answer or order, no way to deny this threat against them all? How could he possibly keep them all safe and himself sane in the process? Most importantly though, how could he watch Micah go back out there after tonight?
Thinking of Micah had Cade walking back to the bed where his mate rested. He crawled across the bed until his knees settled next to Micah’s form. The dark haired male was sprawled on his back, his breathing nice and deep. Newly healed skin covered his previously rotting shoulder. Cade lowered his head with a kiss to the old wound. Micah began to stir. With a pained sigh, Cade covered his mate’s body with his own and exhaled.
“Where am I?” Micah grumbled, but didn’t question Cade’s need to touch him. He ran his large hands over his mate’s back, down to his firm back side, and up again. “Baby?”
“Just touch me,” Cade whispered back. His lips pressed slow kisses to Micah’s neck.
“Cade, come on,” Micah growled a little. Moving around, he put Cade on his back, only to notice the stiffness in his entire body—especially his shoulder. Seeing Cade underneath him, made Micah hungry. Always had, always would, he licked his lips.
“You wouldn’t wake up.” Cade turned his head to avoid the look in Micah’s eyes. “I couldn’t wake you up. Shit.”
Taking his mate’s chin in his hand, Micah turned Cade to face him. “What do you mean I wouldn’t wake up, Cade?”
“You were dying, Micah,” Cade choked, putting a hand over his mouth as the tears came.
“Ah no, baby. Come here, I wasn’t going to die.” Micah reached down and pulled his equally matched mate into his arms. He couldn’t seem to shake the soreness from his body no matter how he moved. Cade made up for it though—his arms and legs wrapping around Micah better than a cashmere sweater. “Now tell me what happened.”
Cade spent the next fifteen minutes held in Micah’s arms, telling his mate of the latest bullshit the assassin’s had concocted. Sparing no detail, Cade let loose his emotions. How Micah had been found, how he felt about the entire ordeal, how Cade just couldn’t wrap his head around almost losing his heart. “Baby, none of us knew. You can’t beat yourself up over this, no matter how scary it is. You did exactly what any of us would have done.”
“What do I now though, Micah? What do I tell these people that are looking to me as their leader? How do I tell them it’s okay when I can’t stop thinking about you laying there almost dead? It’s not okay, not even the tiniest bit.” Cade rose to his knees, pushing Micah back on the bed. “How do we protect Isaac from this, our baby?” Cade straddled Micah, bringing his lover’s hands to his hips.
“We’ll figure it out. It’s not all on you, it never was. There’s a reason you have all these men fighting for you, Cade, and that’s because you involve them. It’s a group effort, it’s all of us. As for Isaac, if anyone laid a finger on our child, I’d cut them into tiny pieces.” Micah’s fingers dug into Cade’s hips, causing the Original to growl.
“Yeah?” Cade hissed.
“Yeah.” Micah bared his fangs. “I would.” He pushed Cade off of him and onto his back. “Now I don’t want to hear another word about the assassins, or enemies, or death. I just want to hear you cry out my name.” He bent down with his fangs at the ready.
“Micah,” Cade moaned, then gasped in pleasure as Micah took over his body. Fangs pierced his neck. Finger’s pushed past his lips, the Original sucking them hard, getting them wet. Micah pulled off his neck.
“I love you too much to leave you like that. You’re stuck with me, baby.” He teased then took his fingers from Cade’s mouth.
“Yes,” Cade hissed when fingers probed at his ass. There was no reason to fuck around right now. He wanted his mate inside of him. He needed to feel Micah for real. Eyes wide, Cade roared Micah’s name, but was silenced with a kiss. The orange glow of the sun penetrated the darkness of the room. Today was a new day—a fresh start for all of them.
~~~~~~At the Compound~~~~~~
“Holy mother,” the guard shrieked—his hand bleeding profusely from the bite of Jess’s fangs. The queen’s armed guards tried as hard as they could to secure her gently, but there was nothing gentle about a feral. Or was she? She wasn’t trying to hurt them, she was just scared. She wanted freedom, to see Danny. Jess could smell her babies close by. She smelled something else.
Jess screamed; that scent calling to her again. Hands grabbed at her, unfamiliar voices shouted in her ears. She’d been abandoned in this white room to these men. Her warning cry was so loud, the guards let go of her to cover their ears. Heart racing, options running out, Jess flew to the door and slammed her hands against it. The twelve inch thick metal door didn’t budge, but her knuckles bled. Cameras zoomed in, an air vent kicked on, the guards again approached. Jess turned her red eyes on them.
“Smell him,” she hissed. The guards looked at each other in confusion.
“Smell who?” One dumb guard approached with his hands raised. “Huh, sweetheart? Who are you talking about?”
He came too close, and ended up thrown into the farthest wall. Jess snarled, “smell him!”
Someone ran past the two way mirror next to Jess. She could feel him coming closer, his scent getting stronger. Her eyes watered, her hands itched. Voices yelled for him to stop through the wall. Jess shook from head to toe with a need that overpowered even that of human blood. The door flew open. All four guards turned their guns on Jess.
She rushed past them so fast—even as vampires—they had a hard time tracking her. Frank filled the doorway, holding his arms out to her. As scared as he was, something brought him to her. He couldn’t fight it. He loved his Blondie too much to believe his mind. She wasn’t a monster, she was just different.
Jess gasped with tears leaking from her eyes. Seeing her mate’s beautiful face was the last thing she remembered, before she pushed him to the ground, and sank her fangs deep into his throat.
TO BE CONTINUED.....