Haven and his kin had now spent their first decade in the trading port turned Spanish settlement which would one day be known to the world as the city of angels. During those ten years, Haven’s soul motivation was to grow and consolidate his power into what would truly be considered a respectable territory for his Princedom.
Haven’s first and most obvious step towards claiming true power there in their new home was to slowly but surely take control of just about every trade or shipping line that came and went from the port. Taking this power for his own was made startlingly easy by the fact that it was very nearly a passive trait that any of his kind possessed to gain the respect, trust, admiration and adoration of just about every human they came into contact with. It took very little effort for their clan, the Toreadors, to do this, as their presence, magnetism and allure were their most apparent supernatural gift given to each of them all by that powerful blood of theirs.
In that reasonably short amount of years, considering their lengthy lifespans, Haven became both powerful and quite wealthy by the time that new century started. He had turned the three modest dwellings into one larger home that they all could shelter safely in each day. Of course, there were other challenges presented by having several Kindred under one roof, at least until they each gathered enough of their own resources to move out on their own. But all in all, their first decade there was going smoother than any of them could have hoped, for most of them, anyway.
Word of Haven’s successes there at the settlement did eventually spread eastward until he finally managed to locate and appoint the four remaining Primogen, or clan representatives, that were still missing from his council. That New Year’s night would mark their first official meeting to discuss plans for how to further the growth and success of their new territory.
It was slightly before eight p.m. when Haven was sitting at the desk in the study of their new home. He was looking over an outline he had written up of all the various things he wanted to try to cover with his new council that night before dawn was upon them once again. His eyes moved to the door moments before Awsha pushed it open and stepped inside.
“Evening” he greeted her before easily moving his eyes back to the paper before him.
“So, when is this meeting again?” she said as she ran her fingers over the desk in front of him.
“As soon as all four of our new friends arrive. Hopefully within the hour” he stated distractedly, his eyes still on the paper rather than her, despite that startling beauty and grace she still possessed nearly thirty years after her embrace.
“And all the details are… set in stone?” she attempted as she invited herself to take a seat on his desk, next to the chair he sat in, her hip close enough to brush his hand where it held the paper before him.
“Which details are you referring to, Awsha?” he asked as his gaze only faltered a moment at her touch before returning to the words before him.
“Like, who all is invited” she offered as she moved her hand to push a loose long blonde lock behind his shoulder.
“The Primogen are who’s invited, since it is a council meeting and all” he stated the facts that she was already perfectly aware of.
“So, you’ve made your final decision on who all the Primogen will be, then?” she returned leaning ever closer to him as she framed her question in a veil of innocence.
Haven couldn’t help his small scoff despite her moving her fingers to run through more of his long blonde locks again “It’s not like the choice was very hard, as most of the representatives are the only members of their clans to have come this far west.”
“Well, there’s more than one Toreador here” she offered.
“Yes and the definition of Primogen is the eldest member of that clan within the current territory. And that would be myself, the Prince, then Sean, which I’m pretty sure you already knew, Awsha” he stated, not allowing his gaze to move from the paper yet, despite all her apparent efforts at distracting him.
“But you’re the Prince; you can make exceptions if you want” she purred as she leaned closer to gently run her lips over his neck.
Haven shook his head with the slightest knowing smirk as he finally looked over at where she continued to deliver tiny kisses along the pale skin of his neck “and why would I want to make this particular exception, childe?” he had to know what her answer would be to that question, honestly.
“Because, before he came here, you and Sean were together for what? Five years? Some of us have been at your side over six times as long” she continued in that purr as she moved to begin undoing the buttons at the front of his shirt.
His light blue eyes moved to watch where her fingers continued working to undo those buttons as he continued to wear his smirk “and is this you pleading your case to get me to offer you the role instead then?”
“You don’t seem to be stopping me” she smiled back up at him as she finished with the last button of his shirt, and easily moved to work at unfastening his pants now as well.
“I’m just intrigued by your method of negotiating I suppose” he allowed another small smile as she finished her task and moved down from the desk to lift her long skirts and take a seat astride his hips instead.
“You seem very intrigued” she smiled back as he allowed himself to harden against her. With another smile, she moved to slide him inside her and began moving against him, continuing to plead that case of hers.
After several dizzying moments of giving one another as much pleasure as they could, without giving each other the even more passionate pleasure of their Kiss, the two finally ceased their movements against one another as they tried to recover from the encounter.
“That was some artful negotiating, darling” Haven whispered as he continued to hold her another moment as they each tried to regain their composure.
“You know, I’d let you bite me too, if you wanted to” she whispered against his ear as she tilted her head ever so slightly to offer him her neck.
Haven allowed a soft chuckle at her words “I’m sure you would” he offered another knowing smirk before lifting her up off of him and setting her back upon the desk. He then moved to stand, readjusting his clothing and reaching for the paper once more before leaving her there to look after him in disbelief as the door closed behind him.
The first meeting of Haven’s council started not much later, in what would pass as their usual meeting space in a large room at the other side of the rather extensive home. Once Sean had also left to attend the meeting, Claire decided to spend her evening trying to get back to the dressmaking she had not totally given up, despite other career paths she had wandered down in the last century.
She was seated in the living area of the home with a new pattern and several bolts of cloth which arrived on the trade ships earlier in the week. As she went about planning where to begin her next creation, she couldn’t help tensing when her hearing caught the sound of Awsha’s heels clicking across the wooden floor as she exited Haven’s adjoining study.
During the past decade Claire had done her best to avoid Awsha at all costs. Of course, this was made that much harder once Haven had them all move into the same home, large though it was. Ever since that move, Claire had pretty much just stayed in her and Sean’s bedroom most nights. But after weeks of doing so, she was going just a bit stir crazy and decided to venture out. Though now she easily remembered why she had been enduring that self-imposed isolation ever since the house had been finished and the move was made final.
Refusing to look back at the sound of Awsha’s approach, she did hear the other woman’s footsteps falter slightly upon entering that same room. But soon, Awsha resumed her approach, slow though it was. Awsha herself seemed to need a moment to gather her composure as she looked around, just to be sure that the rest of their companions were not nearby to provide any further delay to this particular encounter. She finally took a seat on the chair that was a few feet off from the couch Claire occupied. Though Awsha still needed a few moments before she found her voice, as Claire also appeared not to be too interested in finding her own either.
“So, you still make dresses?” was the first thing Awsha could come up with, which did cause Claire to simply close her eyes a moment as she attempted to find any sort of reaction to this being the one person whose company she was to be graced with that night.
“I’m sure you have much nicer ones now, considering Haven’s windfall of late” she finally decided on, though the force it took to keep any and all emotion out of her voice as she spoke to this woman was nearly tangible.
“Haven hasn’t really spent much time showering me with gifts, or anything else, really” she added more quietly as she looked away.
Though her statement did cause a brief flash of some sort of reaction to pass over Claire’s otherwise stony expression “I find that hard to believe” Claire decided on, not having a lot of luck sounding sincere as she could smell Haven’s scent all over Awsha. Though that fact did do well to bring her both hope and worry at the same time, somehow.
“No, he barely acknowledges me most days” Awsha allowed, her voice quiet as she couldn’t keep her eyes from wandering back to Claire repeatedly, hoping to see anything else in the other woman’s aura besides the seething distrust and dislike that flooded that aura any time Awsha was within her sight.
“Guess this is one of the better days then?” Claire couldn’t help returning, though her eyes refused to move back to the younger, yet somehow still stronger Kindred who was now in her presence.
Awsha was a bit taken by that statement as she quickly looked back at Claire again “Did you… hear us?” she offered, wondering what else Claire may have heard with that heightened set of senses they were all blessed with, when they chose to use them.
Claire looked down slightly “I know Haven’s scent. I just didn’t notice it on you much before, considering, we haven’t spent all that much time together” she decided on.
Awsha looked down again “it hasn’t been on me all that often” she admitted.
“Really? In thirty years? That’s surprising” Claire returned, though it was hard to decipher what emotions she spoke the words with, despite Awsha’s attempts at reading her aura.
“Most of those thirty years Haven has kept me at a distance” Awsha confessed “emotionally, if not physically” she added more quietly.
“That seems to be changing now” Claire returned. She was still not sure whether she was happy that Awsha seemed to have shifted her passions to her sire rather than Claire’s own husband; or worried that Haven would somehow be swayed by her onto some terrible path that would cause even more hardship for them all somewhere down the line.
“Not really” Awsha stated, her voice almost sad, which did cause Claire to allow the slightest glance sideways at her.
“Well, you are lovers though, aren’t you?” Claire finally managed to ask, keeping her eyes on the other girl for more than a second for once.
“I think you should know by now, that even if men want me… it doesn’t mean they actually love me, at all” Awsha returned in a near whisper as she then moved to leave the room once again, not looking back to see what reaction Claire may have actually had to her seeming to finally, at long last, concede defeat.