Ravyn's Nights - Book 2

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Chapter 31

When Sean and Claire had awoken that same evening neither of them appeared to have the energy or motivation to leave their bed very quickly. This was most likely caused by not only the very real threat of having an extremely dangerous enemy who seemingly outmatched they and those close to them, but also due to the continued strain of their still not completely restored relationship. Claire awoke and didn’t show much more desire to do anything other than lock her green eyes on the wall as she remained lying on her side, her back to Sean, her fingers continuing to tightly clutch at the pillow beneath her head. Sean too remained rather still, lying on his back next to her, his eyes on the ceiling above.

After several excruciatingly long minutes, Sean finally allowed a nearly inaudible sigh as he let himself turn his head toward her, where she still had not attempted to move or even speak since waking either. Sean attempted to come up with anything he could say in response to the fact that nearly all of their interactions since her return to the waking world were those nights of her asking for him to continue to punish her for her crimes. Then there were her words the night before, when she had claimed she no longer wanted any more pain after being confronted with the very real pain of what had been done to Deborah.

Even though she had voiced a desire to open the door for them to have a different sort of interaction again now; Sean was still finding it rather difficult to find any words to speak to her. After all, she was not the only one who was suffering from a horrendous guilt over her own actions. Of course, she had no knowledge of Sean’s guilt, still.

They had been lying there for nearly half an hour since waking; Sean still not able to find words and Claire not seeming to have any more of her own either. Words failing him, Sean decided that perhaps actions would speak louder and help them at least begin to repair a love so rare that no one could ever understand what they had except one another.

He finally rolled onto his side to face where Claire still lay with her back to him. Of course, feeling him move closer did do well to make her entire body tense once again. After all, it had been a decade and a half since the two had any real contact outside of the pain she asked him to inflict on her, and that ever so short embrace last night when she had made her decision to end the sadomasochistic encounters that had been all they had shared at all for five long years now.

Sean gently moved his hand up to brush her long locks away from her neck and back above where she was dressed only in a thin nightgown. Of course, that touch only caused another wave of tension in her. Biting back another sigh, he moved closer to slide his arms around her, kissing the back of her head as he pulled her close against the rest of his body in the gentle embrace. He waited several long moments for that tension to hopefully leave her tiny frame at the feel of his arms around her again, though it appeared to be going nowhere soon.

As Sean seemed determined not to release her from that gentle grip, Claire finally managed to force her voice to work “I just don’t understand how you could ever forgive me for leaving you to mourn her all alone… and for so long” she whispered, eyes still glued to the wall next to their bed.

More than a bit relieved at hearing her voice at last, Sean responded “Not forgiving you would mean not ever being able to have you back again. And I can’t spend another second without having you back, Claire. It’s killing me. I need you back. So I need to forgive you. And I do” he assured as he dared to place the gentlest of kisses against her pale neck “so now, please let me have you back” he added, his voice breaking slightly.

Claire sniffled slightly as she slowly, shakily rolled to her back to look up into his face which was so near to hers now “I don’t deserve you, Sean” she whispered as she gently brought her fingers up to touch his cheek “and I don’t have any idea why or how you can still love me; after all of this” she added with another sniffle.

“I can’t even comprehend that question, Claire. I can’t comprehend not loving you. It’s my natural state. It’s more natural to me than breathing, literally” he added with a slight smile “I don’t know how to be anything other than in love with you. There is no other way I could ever be” he assured her as he finally moved to accent his words by covering her lips with his own for the first time in the last decade and a half of their long lives together.

Taylor and Awsha had spent most of the evening going through Awsha’s extensive wardrobe that she had pilfered from various shipments over the years. They spent much of their time discussing the clothing itself, considering the reason Taylor had even received her name. Eventually though, the conversation moved to discussing the people who had raised the blonde who appeared to be barely twenty.

“So they took you in when you were still a child?” Awsha repeated as the two now lay across the bed, Taylor had chosen to don one of Awsha’s fancier blood red dresses, rather than the much more modest attire she had arrived in.

“Yes, I traveled with them for a long time. But now that I’m… this” Taylor decided on “it’s much harder to keep traveling constantly. And this happened to be the nearest territory to where I found myself in recent nights” Taylor stated quietly.

“So you were embraced recently?” Awsha returned as she looked down at where Taylor lay across the bed on her back, while Awsha lay on her stomach, propped on her elbows.

“Recently enough” Taylor returned with another wry smile.

“That’s fairly vague” Awsha smiled as she made another attempt to read the girl’s aura, with no luck.

“Well, it’s not my favorite subject. I was left to become this alone. My sire didn’t exactly spend any time explaining what I was, or even sticking around for that matter” Taylor replied, eyes down.

“Did your sire at least stay to get you through the frenzy?” Awsha returned warily.

“Not exactly” Taylor swallowed slightly “which is another reason why I was a bit less welcome with the Romani after… that” she finished quietly.

“So you killed someone?” Awsha returned with a look down of her own.

“I didn’t even know what I was doing at the time. Not that that really made a difference to the rest of my so-called family” Taylor admitted in the same quiet tone, eyes still averted. She then looked over at Awsha worriedly “is that going to get me sent away now?”

Awsha allowed a slight scoff “I doubt it. Considering, I heard that Claire killed someone when she was made; not to mention another slightly similar incident recently” she added more quietly, and then added “And then there was Sean, who frenzied much more recently than his embrace and almost killed someone” Awsha added with a trace of remaining bitterness.

“Sean and Claire?” Taylor looked up at her questioningly.

“Sean is my clan Primogen” Awsha gave the extremely abbreviated explanation “and Claire’s his wife. And Haven never sent either of them away. So, he’d have to be a bit of a hypocrite to send you away for something you did before even coming here. Wouldn’t he?” Awsha assured.

“I sense you have some issues with your sire-slash-Prince” Taylor dared with a knowing smile.

“That’s one way of putting it” Awsha agreed, though her eyes were also averted now.

“Do tell. I’ve been starved for conversation trying to get here without being burnt to a crisp” Taylor prodded with another charming smile toward Awsha as she turned to prop herself up on her elbows as well, moving even closer to Awsha to hear her story.

“You really want to hear my life story?” Awsha questioned with a bit of surprise.

“You’re a princess living in a castle…more or less” Taylor smiled “much more interesting than my story of woe, abandonment and misfortune” she assured as she gently nudged Awsha with her shoulder.

“I don’t feel like much of a princess too often” Awsha mumbled.

“I’m listening” Taylor offered another smile.

“And as for woe, abandonment and misfortune; I’ve had quite a bit of that myself, despite all appearances” Awsha added as she pointedly looked about her lush surroundings.

“Sounds more and more interesting” Taylor smiled again as she moved closer still.

Seeing as Awsha was a bit starved for company more often than not, she easily gave in to an attempt at swaying at least one person to possibly see her as more than the villain of the story “Less than a year after I was embraced by Haven, I had a bit of a tryst with Sean. They’ve all been rather upset at me since then” Awsha added quietly.

“Sean, the Primogen?”

“Yes, the Primogen… and Claire’s husband” Awsha added pointedly.

Taylor smirked at that before offering a response “didn’t you say that this Sean was the Toreador Primogen?”

“Yes, why?” Awsha asked as she gave Taylor another questioning look at that particular comment.

“I was under the impression that Toreadors were… a little less properly behaved than most folks” Taylor attempted, editing her comment as Awsha and their Prince were of that same clan.

Awsha couldn’t help a slight laugh “It depends on your definition of proper behavior. We are the least likely to rip people’s throats out, if that’s the kind of proper behavior you mean.”

“I was actually referring to more libidinous behavior” Taylor smirked once more “considering your clan’s nickname, I didn’t think respecting marriage vows would have been that high on any of your lists” Taylor added with her own chuckle.

Awsha just scoffed “exactly” she then shook her head “and the worst part is that Sean and Claire they have an open fucking marriage. None of it makes any sense” Awsha just shook her head.

“Sounds like somebody’s still carrying a torch” Taylor interpreted easily.

Awsha just scoffed “well, you haven’t seen Sean” she mumbled as she toyed with a loose thread on the blanket below them.

“You could always try sleeping with his wife too. Maybe she just feels left out” Taylor couldn’t help a slight giggle.

Awsha simply rolled her eyes “I seriously doubt Claire has any desire anywhere in her being to crawl into bed with me” she assured.

“Well, have you tried seducing her?” Taylor asked, her eyes moving over Awsha to accent her slightly sultry tone.

Awsha was a bit caught by the look Taylor had given her, but quickly moved on “Trust me. There is no word to describe how much Claire hates me” she informed.

“Well, you’re a Toreador. Isn’t it kind of impossible for most people to resist you at all” Taylor continued in the same tone, running a fingertip down Awsha’s arm to accent the statement.

Awsha’s eyes moved to the girl’s hand before moving her eyes back to Taylor’s pretty face with intrigue “you saying that’s your opinion too?” she added with her own smile.

“Can’t say that the idea of being with a princess is too off-putting” Taylor returned with another grin.

“You do know that being Haven’s childe doesn’t actually make me a princess?” Awsha replied, though turned to face the fair-haired beauty, letting her own eyes move to the swell of the other girl’s breasts above the corset that was built into the dress of Awsha’s that she had changed into earlier in the evening.

“That somehow doesn’t seem to be affecting my opinion” Taylor assured with a slight biting of her lip.

Awsha paused for only a moment “Maybe your sire was actually a Toreador too. Most other Kindred don’t seem very interested in… seduction” Awsha added, her own tone becoming slightly sultry.

“Or maybe you really are that hard to resist” Taylor told her as she boldly reached up to lightly run a fingertip over the swell of Awsha’s own breast above the equally tight corset she also wore.

“Well, despite what my dear sire might think; it could be very interesting to have some new blood around here” Awsha returned as she reached up to slowly begin undoing the laces of her own corset.

“I think we really may become the best of friends” Taylor returned as she moved her hands to the laces of her own dress.

“Just friends?” Awsha replied as she finished pulling the laces loose and gently tugged away the material to expose her breasts.

That was when Taylor smirked again, before pulling the dress down around her hips, kicking it to the floor as she crawled across the bed toward Awsha, now merely clad in her undergarments “ask me again in an hour” she teased before pushing Awsha to her back, following to lay across her, covering her lips with her own.

“Only an hour?” Awsha smiled as Taylor ended the kiss long enough to finish helping Awsha the rest of the way out of her own clothing.

“I guess we’ll have to see” Taylor allowed another laugh before ridding herself of the last items of clothing before pulling Awsha across her body and covering her mouth once more.

It was indeed over an hour before Taylor and Awsha finally ended their encounter and now lay entangled together across the bed. After a few more moments of recovering and allowing their bodies to cool again, Awsha looked over at the blonde beauty beside her. She shook her head again as that aura was still completely unreadable to her.

“Yes?” Taylor asked as she smiled up at where Awsha looked down at her.

“Seriously, how do you do that?”

“The thing with my tongue?” Taylor asked innocently.

“Haha” Awsha smirked “I mean how come I can’t read your aura? I’m way older than you. And Haven’s way older than me. And he can’t seem to either” Awsha pressed, quite curious about how a Kindred so young could ever hide her aura from her elders. Usually the only time Awsha had ever had trouble reading any aura was with Haven and, on occasion, Sean.

“The Romani are entertainers. Entertainment is all illusion, isn’t it?” Taylor offered as her only explanation.

“I’m not sure I follow” Awsha admitted.

“I’m very good at creating illusions. Even the illusion that there are no colors in my aura. It’s quite useful when you never know who your enemies might be” she added softly.

Awsha was a bit thrown by hearing about an ability that none of her own kind ever possessed or even mentioned before as far as she could recall “what kind of illusions?” she had to ask.

“Just about any kind I want” Taylor smiled up at her. But before Awsha could pose any more questions, Taylor moved to cover her lips again, putting a definitive end to that conversation; at least for the moment, anyway.

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