She sat on the edge of the bluff and looked down at the lake in the valley. It was teeming with people on this hot and sultry Tennessee day. She sighed and looked across the lush green valley.

The rest of her kind couldn’t understand why someone like her had chosen to live in such an isolated place deep in the heart of the Smokey Mountains, among the hill people. She had chosen it for its isolation, she wanted her privacy. When she saw the lonely wind swept bluff she knew it was what she needed. The perfect place for her to shut herself away and think.

Three years ago she had commissioned the house. For the year it took to plan and build it had distracted her and kept her busy. But once it was done and she had moved in her grief and loneliness returned full force. Being alone in the big house made her miss Darious all the more.

For two years now she hadn’t fed. She was trying to clear her mind, like a fasting. She wanted Darious back. That is the only thing that was going to make her happy once again. So she shut herself away in the big house all by herself to think. For two long years she avoided contact with other beings as much as she could.

It had been 75 long and lonely years since Darious had been out of her life. First there was the fight with him, looking back now she realized it was over a trivial matter, then she stormed out to give herself time to cool down so she would be reasonable, then his raging, finally, before she could find him and make amends, the Society of Templars attacked him and sent him back to hell before she knew what happened. A 24 hour period in her life she would never forget and would always regret. The Society of Templars were illegal now in these more tolerant times, like the Legion, beings that hunted down and killed she-devils and other such groups that hunted non-humans. Her rage knew no bounds. She went before the She-Devil governing council and got permission to hunt down and kill the men who had taken him from her. She knew the only reason they gave her their permission was they felt it would give her relationship with Darious the closure she needed so she could move on and get over him. It didn’t work.

She tracked them down one by one, slaughtering them each in the most gruesome manner imaginable then opened a gate to hell and kicked them through. Proving perhaps, that the Templars should fear a pissed off she-devil more than a demon. Her rage was satiated but her grief knew no bounds. She assumed after a few months she would be over it and resume her life. She was wrong. As time went on her loneliness and the need for him grew. She felt as though her heart and soul had been ripped out. She fed and hunted only when the need and pain got so great she couldn’t stand it anymore. The thrill of the hunt was gone.

For 70 years she drifted all over the world. She came to the realization that despite not wanting to she had fallen in love with him. It wasn’t just the sexual relationship she had thought it was. The most cold-hearted of her kind had fallen in love, with a demon no less, and then had lost him.

Five years ago she had returned to the house they had shared in Charlotte. She spent an hour walking through it. Everything was just how it was the night he had been taken from her. She had the contents removed and stored. The walk through had made her realize that she wanted, no, needed him back. And a horrible plan had started to form.

She flew to Europe and spent two years doing research. The Danyealla that came back was so changed and different that it frightened even those who had been closest to her over the centuries.

Since she had moved to TN at least once a week one of her kindred visited. They outwardly tried to convince her to return to society and resume her life. But she sensed their worry. They were worried she was going to go to “ground” or commit suicide. She chuckled inwardly, she hadn’t even considered those options, what she was going to do was far worse. She shooed them away as fast as she could, letting it be known she wanted to be left alone.

Finally, the council held an emergency meeting on the subject of her. They all knew her well, hell; she had created most of them. They agreed something had to be done, no-one wanted to loose her. They agreed to send Arkady to talk to her. They had a special bond and friendship so the council felt he could get more out of her than they could. After his report they would decide their course of action. Arkady agreed to go speak with her.

The day he arrived at her isolated house he found her sitting on the edge of the bluff staring at the rising moon. He approached her quietly but her keen senses alerted her to his presence. “Sit down Arkady; I knew you would be showing up. The council sent you didn’t they?””

He sat down next to her. It was his first close look at her in more than a year. She looked tired and there were lines on her face from not feeding for a long time but her eyes are what scared him. They were bright and alert but more than that there was an excitement in them that hadn’t been there in years. He knew she had decided something, that frightened him. He proceeded as calmly as he could. “Yes M’Lady, they most certainly did. They are worried about you, afraid of what you are thinking about doing or are about to do. Frankly, I am as well.”

She chuckled, “Afraid of what? No-one knows my thoughts and what I may or may not be thinking.”

“Very true M’Lady. We are just guessing. This is so unlike you that we are afraid for you.”

She looked at him and grinned, “Tell me Arkady, what am I thinking about doing?”

He shook his head and looked down at the darkening valley. “I cannot say M’Lady. I’m afraid perhaps you’re considering suicide or something worse. The council and myself are afraid because we are your friends and wish no hard to come to you.”

She smiled then patted his hand. “Put your mind at ease, I’m in now way, shape or form considering suicide. Unlike most of my kind I knew what I was getting into when Wynter created me and won’t take the easy way out. Besides, I like being alive.”

He nodded, some of the worry lines on his forehead smoothing out. But he knew there was still something she was thinking about and his intuition told him it was equally dangerous. “Then what is it you are thinking about Lady Danyealla, if I may be so bold to inquire?”

She didn’t answer him right away, just stared up at the moon. She then looked down and sighed softly.

His brow furrowed, starting to worry, “M’Lady?”

“I still miss Darious. Even after 75 years my longing for him has never abated. If anything, as each year passes I miss him more. When I went to our house five years ago a plan started to form. What I have decided is to bring him back. I can’t live without him anymore and don’t want to. Each day my longing for him grows greater. Every day without him a small part of me dies.”

He stared at her, a look of total disbelief evident; he didn’t even try to hide it. He then frowned, “That disreputable, arrogant, self pleasing, mongrel of a demon????? That loathsome creature????”

She laughed, “That’s him! I see you remember him.”

“Of course I remember him! How could I not? How could you want that, that, THING back? Look at yourself Lady Danyealla; you could have any male of any race you wanted. I know of no-one anywhere that could resist you. As a matter of fact I know of one who would do anything for you to have him.”

“I know Arkady, but I don’t want just anyone, I want Darious. You see, I came to the realization a few years ago that I love him.”

He growled deeply then said in a cold, hard voice not bothering to soften the hatred and anger in it, “Why would you, how could you fall in love with that fiend? He tried to subjugate you and would have your entire race if given the opportunity. Before him you were such a free spirit but that is all gone now.”

“I don’t know how or why I fell in love with him, all I know is I did. As for the subjugation, whatever he did he did because I let him.”

He shook his head, “In all the years I’ve known you M’Lady this is the most foolish concept I’ve ever heard come out of your mouth.” He stopped and took a deep breath, trying to get up the courage to say what he had wanted to say to her for so long. “Accept me instead M’Lady. I would care for you in a way he never could. I love you already beyond your wildest imagination.”

She arched an eyebrow and looked at him, “You Arkady? I know no easy way to say this so I will just spit it out. As wonderful as I think you are and as good of a friend as you are to me, you’re just not my type. I’m sorry.” She reached over and stroked his hair softly.

He lowered his head, a dejected look on his face. Deep in his heart he knew what she told him was true, it just hurt to hear her say it. He put his emotions in check then looked at her. He reached over and softly ran a finger over some of the lines on her face. “M’Lady, you really need to feed. These lines tell me it’s been a long time since you have. How long has it been, if I may ask? And why so long?”

“It’s been over a year, probably closer to two. I quit to clear my head and to allow myself to think more clearly.”

“Of all the foolishness I’ve heard in my time that takes the cake!”

She chuckled, “Arkady, you know I can go for six years or more without any ill effects. But thank you for your concern Daddy. You should know by now that we old women don’t need as much to eat as the young whippersnappers do.”

Despite trying to maintain a firm façade he burst out laughing, “Ok, OK, point taken. But seriously, are your other, err, needs being taken care of?”

“Humans are a quite inventive species. They have an appliance for just about every need. But by far their greatest one is the vibrator. It is more that adequate for that particular need.”

He nodded, “I’ve heard that said before.” He looked at her again, “Do you really wish and want him back?”

“Yes, more than anything.”

He sighed and shook his head, “In your heart of hearts do you truly love him?” She locked eyes with him. “I truly do. I never have fallen in love and you know that, so it’s the real thing.”

He shook his head, “He was detrimental to you M’Lady. Everyone and I do mean everyone, despised him and was thankful when he was gone. The council frowned upon the relationship from the start. But I fear if you bring him back it will be much worse.”

She frowned, “What are they going to do? Kill me? Everyone knows there is no-one left above ground capable of doing it. So that particular threat doesn’t bother me.”

“They could excommunicate you M’Lady.”

Her eyes and voice both hardened “Let them.”

He looked at her, “Could you live with being considered a rogue?”

She shook her head, “They won’t do it, and we both know that.”

“They might M’Lady, if you push them far enough. Bringing that being back might be enough to do it.”

“Jade has pushed them further than I ever dreamed of doing plus she’s directly disobeyed council orders and flaunted their authority at every turn and they haven’t put a hit on her yet. What I’m planning on doing is no worse than what she’s done for centuries.”

“Maybe, maybe not M’Lady, it would depend upon your point of view. Lady Danyealla, I beg of you, reconsider this foolishness and forget him. The dislike of him before will be nothing compared to what is to come.”

“No one wants or tries to understand the why behind my actions.” She sighed. “Darious made my happy, the only being in my long life that has. You’re a dear sweet, wonderful friend Arkady but this part of my life doesn’t concern you or the council so I ask you nicely to stay out of it.”

His face hardened and he stood, “So be it Lady Danyealla, I will take my leave of you. Goodbye.”

She didn’t look at him, just stared out over the valley. When she spoke her voice hardened in a way he had never heard used towards him before. “If you leave now you may never come back. Also, you will never again be welcomed in my presence.”

He stopped in his tracks and turned back to gauge her body language, determining she was not using dramatics and meant every word of it. He sat back down next to her. They sat in silence at least five minutes before he spoke, voice soft and apologetic, “M’Lady, I am truly sorry and regret my outburst. My emotions got the better of me.”

“I understand Arkady.”

“You do realize I am compelled to report this to the council and they are going to be less than pleased about it. Please M’Lady, I beg of you, use your common sense and don’t do this.”

“Let me explain how I feel in a way you can better understand. I’m tied and feel about him the same way you are to Jade. Darious is in my blood the same way Jade is in yours.”

He shuddered violently, not because what she said frightened him but because she just explained it in a way he understood far too well. “Lady Danyealla, I now understand better than I whish too. I don’t wish to offend you but I must tell you I feel the same way about you. Your blood flows in my veins as well.”

She stroked his arm softly, “I know Arkady, I’ve always known. I have a tie to Darious that is just as strong as any blood tie. I want and need him in that way. You and I cannot ever be. You just aren’t my type, I’m sorry.”

He lowered his head and sighed, “I understand, somewhat. But you can’t blame me for trying.”

She smiled, “I don’t.”

He looked at her, “The council was hoping you and I would get together.”

She chuckled, “I’m not surprised. I want you to understand that you can’t do for me what Darious can. I know you, there’s no way you could get that rough with me.”

“You’re right; I could never hurt you, ever. No matter how much you begged me too.” He looked at her. “But you are my friend.”

She smiled, “And always will be, nothing will ever change that.”

He smiled back at her, “That is all I ask M’Lady.”

“I know asking you to be friends with him is too much to ask but what I will ask is for you to understand. Darious never abused me, ever. The only time he hurt me is when I asked him to, begged him too.”

He looked down, “I understand M’Lady, even though I don’t want to, I do. Do me a favor, if you intend to go through with this, feed. You will need all your strength to succeed.”

“I’m no fool, I plan to and a lot.”

He turned to her and clapped both her hand in his, “Feed off me, please. You know a werewolf’s blood is more satisfying.”

Her eyes softened as she looked at him but shook her head, “No Arkady, if I did you would hurt more than you already do.”

His eyes implored her, “I have to have you, even if it’s only once.”

“Arkady, the only way I would is if I don’t touch you and I know that isn’t what you want.”

“Why not touch me? Please M’Lady, that’s what I want!”

“Because if we do, it’ll ruin our friendship.”

He looked down and sighed, “If you say so.”

She reached over and tilted his head up with one finger and looked in his eyes, “In your heart you know I’m right.”

He looked at her, eyes full of emotion, “True, but right or wrong it still hurts, badly.”

She stroked the side of his face softly, “I know it does but I would hurt worse if we did, especially knowing it would be the only time.”

He let out a ragged breath, “Yes, M’Lady.”

“You would end up resenting me Arkady.”

He lowered his eyes again and sat quietly.

“It would make your longing for me worse because you would get a taste of what you want then never get it again.”

He looked her in the eyes again, “I know, my brain tells me you’re right but my heart tells me to take it anyway I can get you and damn the consequences.”

They sat quietly for several minutes while Arkady tried to get a handle on his emotions. Finally, he spoke, “Promise me one thing Lady Danyealla that you know what you are doing and you’ll be careful.”

“I know what I’m doing. I spent two years researching the ritual and I’ll be careful, I know if I’m not I could end up in hell myself and be another demons play toy for all eternity. I don’t want that. If it will help, if Darious comes back this way, I have control of him, and can send him back if I wish.”

His relief was evident, “I will inform the council of your plans, emphasizing that you hold the strings.” He rose, getting ready to leave.

She stood up and hugged him, “I’m sorry I hurt you Arkady.”

He held her close, not wanting to ever let go, “M’Lady, I would rather be told up front than be led on.”

She smiled up at him then reached up and brushed a lock of hair out of his face, “Next time you long for me remember this, my lovers never last long. I get bored with them quickly then move on. But our friendship has spanned centuries and I have never gotten bored with you.”

He gave her a brilliant smile, “Because you, M’Lady, are the ultimate hunter and predator, thrilled by the hunt rather than the catch. And there is no one better at it; you have perfected it to a fine art.” She walked him to his car and kissed him on the cheek before he got in. Before he pulled out he rolled down the window, “When are you going to do it M’Lady?”

“The night of the full moon, five days from now. That is when my powers will be the greatest and my chances of succeeding are best.”

He nodded, “Luck be with you M’Lady.” He blew her a kiss then drove off.

She waved as he drove off then watched until she could no longer see his car. She then stared up at the moon, holding herself. She had omitted a few things in her talk with him. Even with all her power and the research she had done the chances of her failing and bringing up from hell more than she could handle were so great that she was scared shitless. But her need for him was so great that she was going to do it anyway, damn the consequences.

She stood starting at the mood for a long time before going inside.

The next five days were busy indeed; she got all his things out of storage and brought them to the house. She acquired everything she would need for the ritual and prepared a room in the basement. She fed more than she had in years, almost to the point of gluttony. But most of all she rested, trying to conserve every ounce of her strength, knowing it was going to take all she had.”

The day of the ritual finally arrived and she busied herself with last minute preparations. She was in the basement arranging everything and doing a final inventory when a familiar scent hit her. She looked up to see Zsuzanna standing there. She stood up, “”Come to talk me out of it? Or just to threaten me? Maybe to try and stop me?”

Zsuzanna stepped into the room, “None of them, I’ve know you long enough to know it wouldn’t do any good. What I cam for is to help in the only way I can. Myself, Arkady, Raven, Mortichi and Aneeka will be outside. You can draw power from us to aid you. Being as old as we are it should be a considerable amount. It should boost your chances of success.” She stepped closer to Danyealla and out her hands on her shoulder, “You have to know none of us are happy about this, we all were relieved when he was gone. We thought you would get over him and move on but that didn’t happen. You are miserable, we can all see that. When Arkady gave his report we were stunned to say the least, and angry. But as we discussed it we realized some things. First, you were happy when you were with him, happier than we had seen you in centuries. Then he was gone and you were miserable. We thought you’d get over it but you didn’t. Now this.” Her arm swept the room. “We hate the idea of you bringing that creature back. The council discussion about this whole matter was heated to say the least. But we know you well enough to know you aren’t doing this to endanger our species but to make yourself happy once again. So we decided to let you go on with it without repercussions or our interference.”

Dani looked at her, “Even if you had said no it wouldn’t have made any difference, you realize that don’t you? This has nothing to do with our species but with my personal life. You all know I would never do anything to endanger us. Darious was the only being ever to satisfy me totally. And I fell in love with him. Never before have I fallen in love. Shit, I’m probably the only one of us to never create a werewolf for myself.”

“I realize that, that’s a lot of the reason we decided not to interfere. We realistically know that you were going to do this with or without permission and there really wouldn’t be anything we could do to stop you. So we support you. We ask but two things, first, are you sure you know what you’re doing? And second, you will be in control of him right?”

“If I’m the one to bring him back I can send him back whenever I want to. I spent two years researching this particular ritual on top of what I already knew about it so I am as sure as I can be about doing it.”

Zsuzanna nodded, “That’s all I can ask of you.” She looked down at the floor and sighed loudly then looked back at Dani. “All who came tonight would be down here with you if we could for moral support but we know for this to succeed you have to be alone. But we’ll be right outside, if you get into trouble just yell and we’ll be here as fast as we can. Draw from us all you need Dani because we don’t want to loose you.”

She smiled, “I will and thank you for being understanding.”

Zsuzanna walked over and hugged her tightly, “For all you’ve done for us and our kind a little understanding and support is the least we can do for you. Hell, for all intensive purposes you are my mother and the mother to every woman standing outside. You gave us a gift so few get and showed us how to use it properly. We are what we are because of you. So we’ve now here for you like you’ve been there for us.”

“Thank you, I appreciate it. Now, out. I have things to do.” She said smiling.

Zsuzanna laughed then clapped her on the back,. As she was walking out she turned and looked at her. She was scared that she would never see her friend and mentor again.

Dani didn’t see her look back because she had once again busied herself with preparations.

Zsuzanna walked back out and joined those waiting for her. She stared up at the moon and sighed, “She’s doing her final preparations as we speak. She should be starting in a half hour or so.”

Those assembled sighed and looked at each other. Raven spoke, “Is it your feeling that she knows how to do it and bring it to fruition successfully?”

Zsuzanna shook her head. “I really don’t know. But I know this, she is so powerful that if anyone can pull it off she can.”

Aneeka spoke up, “Plus what ever extra power she may need she can draw from us. We all know she is very capable of that.”

Arkady sighed, “Our support will count for something. She knows we’re here for her.”

Mortichi leaned against a tree, “This negative attitude shit ain’t a gonna help.”

Zsuzanna nodded, “He’s right. Power of positive thinking and all that. Let’s go get comfy.”

They all walked to the edge of the bluff to sit down. Arkady stayed behind, stopping to turn and look at the house, a worried look on his face. “Please be alright M’Lady. I have lost so much in my long life and I don’t want to lose my best and trusted friend. I don’t think I could go on without you and I wouldn’t want to try.” He thought. He said a silent prayer to the ancient Viking gods and joined the others.

Finally, everything was ready to go. She took a few steps back and leaned against the wall. The enormity of the whole situation hit her and for the first time the actual danger of it hit her and she started shaking all over. She sat down and held herself. It took a good five minutes before she got herself under control. She closed her eyes and concentrated until a peace and calm washed over her. Her confidence returned full force and she stood, walking over to her place. She picked up the book and began the ritual.

Outside they were sitting on the edge of the bluff, talking softly in the hot and sultry night air when a cold breeze and a thick fog rolled in. The all shivered and looked at one another. Raven hugged herself tightly and looked at the other. “She has begun.” She told them softly.

The others felt a chill trace down their spines and all conversations ceased.

The ritual went smoothly, just how she had planned it. But when it ended nothing happened. Just when she was beginning to think it had failed there was a deep rumbling so loud it shook the stone foundations. The room filled with a thick, acrid smoke that smelled strongly of sulfur and brimstone. Flames erupted from the pentagram on the floor and burned brightly. The unearthly screams of damned souls filled the room, causing her to wince. Then the sounds of heavy footsteps were heard approaching. A snarl of primal rage and anger so loud it vibrated the walls was heard. A shape started to emerge in the flames and bright red, glowing eyes became visible. It started speaking in a language unknown to her then it roared. It started thrashing against the barrier that held it with a red clawed hand covered with scales.

She took a few steps back and leaned against the wall, concentrating at keeping the circle pf protection in place, watching carefully.

Outside they felt the deep rumble and heard the screams and howls. They looked at each other, faces pale. “I’d be guessin’ that she done brought sumthin’ up from hell.” Mortichi said.

Zsuzanna sighed. “It appears that way.” The smell of sulfur and brimstone washed over them. “My only hope is whatever she brought forth she can control.”

The others nodded and moved closer together.

The flames burned down enough that the shadowy figure was more viable. It growled deeply then it started to speak, its voice a low, deep rumble. “Who hath brought me back to this realm of mortal men? You have forsaken yourself for I shall rip the earth asunder and claim your soul for myself to torture.”

She stood stiffly watching him, her feet rooted to the floor. The only sound coming from her was the sound of her hammering heart.

He growled again, “Who doth disturb Lord Darious and return him to this forsaken realm of men?” He let out a roar of rage, the room then filled with his primal emotion. “Speak human! Who hath brought me here?”

She didn’t answer, her mouth feeling as dry as dust and her tongue seemed to be glued to the room of her mouth.

He leaned his head back and sniffed the air then chuckled, “Ahh, ’tis a lustful female which brought forth the lord of lust. Speak toy! Who are you?” He glared at her. “I Shall do as I please with you. Take you to hell and share you with other demons. The dukes of hell always like new toys. Speak woman!” He roared, throwing himself at the barrier, testing its strength.

Finally, he drew back, “Speak! Who are you? If you do not answer when I am free I will turn you inside out, turning pleasure into pain. By the time I am done with you you’ll pray for eternal slumber and your soul will beg for mercy. Now, speak!”

She found her voice and stepped forward, “I brought you back Darious.”

His eyes bored into her, “And who art thou woman?”

She lowered the hood of her robe; her blonde hair spilling over her shoulders, then stepped closer to the barrier, letting him get a better look at her. “Your toy Darious. She knew he was not yet the Darious she remembered. She was prepared for the range, anger and confusion, also for him not to remember her immediately. She knew it would take a while for him to re-orient himself to this realm then he would remember.

He growled and glared at her. His eyes bored into her soul, searching it, trying to get a grip on her. Primal power was emitting from him. He then started trying to search her memory but to no avail, causing him to become more animalistic.

She stood back and patiently waited.

In the next hour it became a battle of wills between the two of them while he continued to test the barrier, throwing himself against it or attacking it. His full demonic form was highly visible being his full nine foot height and his wings were extended as far as the barrier would allow them.

When he realized he couldn’t bend or break her will he went into a berserk rage, howling, growling and snarling so loud the walls vibrated.

Outside, they all looked at the house, shivering. The animalistic noises coming from the basement floated to them on the wind. Arkady got up and started pacing back and forth, a worried look on his face. Raven stood up and put a hand on his shoulder, “Don’t get worried. The noise is coming from the fact the creature cannot get beyond the barrier she has in place so it’s in a rage. She is holding strong and it doesn’t like it.”

He stopped and looked at her, “Are you sure?”

She nodded, “Quite sure. If it was loose there wouldn’t be any noise.”

He visibly relaxed as did everyone else.

After a half hour of raging he stopped and gave her a dry glare. He tried searching her memory again and got a little further than before but not much. His memory was starting to return so he did know her name now. He crossed his arms across his best, Why have you brought me back Lady Danyealla? Or should I call you Dani? Maybe she-devil, toy, slut, pet, whore?”

She ignored the insults, “I missed you.”

His eyes brightened, “You missed me? A demon? One who your kind fears and hates? You missed me?”

She looked up at him, “Yes, I did.

He cocked his head to one side and looked intently at her, “How can this be? When a she-devil sees a demon she turns pale, does an about face and runs the other direction, her tail between her legs.”

She chuckled, “Because, I do miss you.”

His eyes bored into hers, “What makes you so different?”

“Because I lived with you Darious.”

He growled loudly, “I though you would have long forgotten by now.”

She smiled, “No, I didn’t forget.”

“Why toy?”

She shifted around a little, “Because you gave me what I wanted, what I longed for. You did for me what no one else could over my long life.”

“What I did was my nature.”

She shrugged, “That’s fine with me, I liked it.”

He sighed heavily, “It appears that you have the upper hand.”

She chuckled, “Maybe I do, in a certain context anyway.”

“And what context is that?”

She stared directly into his eyes, “I can send you back if I so chose.”

He stared back at her, “What is it you want from me?”

“Just what we had is all.”

“And just what was that?”

“I want to be your toy again.”

His eyes brightened again, “Do you give yourself to me freely? All of yourself? Including your soul?”

She took a couple deep breaths and started shaking but she locked eyes with him, “Yes, I do, freely, willingly and completely.”

His wings fluttered slightly and he growled long and low, asserting his power. “Then you will lower the barrier and release me. You will then come over and kneel before me.”

She quickly lowered the barrier, then slowly walked over and stood before him. She looked up into his eyes before kneeling before him. This was putting her in the greatest danger and she knew it. She was aware that his full memory hadn’t yet returned.

Outside they felt the power in the air dissipate in a seconds time and an eerie silence surround them. Zsuzanna looked at Raven, “What just happened?”

Raven concentrated for a minute, frowning, “She just eliminated the barrier.”

Aneeka shuddered, “What exactly does that mean?”

Raven sighed, “It means one o three things, first, she’s sent it back and no longer needs it. Second, it overpowered her and broke through. Or third, she has it under control and lowered it voluntarily.”

Arkady shuddered, “Can you tell which it is?”

Raven shook her had and looked at them.

“Shit.” Zsuzanna muttered and everyone else nodded.

He looked down at her for a full minute, quiet. He stretched his wings to their full 18 foot span before finally saying, “Stand up and loot at me.”

She did, looking directly into his eyes, no fear evident.

His power was now palpable in the room, filling it. He looked down deeply into her eyes. After a minute his full memory returned and he finally recognized her. His rage lessened considerably and his face softened. He looked deep into her eyes then spoke, “Why did you bring me back? Just to be my toy once again? There has to be a deeper reason for this.” He grabbed her chin roughly, looking down into her eyes. “What’s your ulterior motive for this toy?”

She smiled, “Because you did for me what no other being before or since could do.”

“And just what is that? Tell me.”

“You gave me what I longed for.”

“And what was that?”

She took a deep breath and looked him in the eye. “You are the only being that has been able to truly dominate me and satisfy my needs.”

He grinned, “But there is something more to it than that isn’t there toy? I want to hear you speak it out loud or I will rip it from your mind and soul. There is nothing you can hide from me toy so out with it. I would rather hear it from you voluntarily than to have to take it from you.”

She looked down at the floor and replied in a barely audible voice. “Because I love you.”

He stared hard at her, then grasped her chin hard and forced her to look up him. “If you truly love me you will denounce all you have known, all you have been and all you will be for me. To be my toy, my slave.”

She looked him directly in the eyes, “I denounce it all, freely and willingly.”

“So be it, you are mine, freely and willingly. You know the ritual you performed has tied us forever. It is stronger than the she-devil blood time. You are now tied and belong to a demon for all eternity.”

“I understand and knew it when I performed the ritual.”

He nodded, “So be it. You wanted eternity with me, a demon, you’ve got it. You will be here on earth or in hell with me. Is that what you wanted?”

“Yes, just so I am with you I don’t care where we are.”

He laughed and reached out to stroke her cheek softly, “My dear toy, your species are wonderful indeed but you are the most wondrous of them all.” He pulled her close to him and hugged her tightly, stroking her hair softly, “You put yourself in mortal danger just to bring me back.”

She clung to him tightly, nuzzling her face into his chest.

He held her tighter then leaned down and sunk his fangs deep into her neck and drank her blood. With her blood came all of her, her memories, experiences, emotions and thoughts, making her his totally and completely.

When he sank his fangs into her neck she orgasmed immediately, throwing her head back and screamed at the top of her lungs, clinging to him tightly, shaking all over.

It had been quiet outside for a while when her screams rent the silence. Arkady was on his feet in a flash and headed towards the house. Mortichi grabbed ahold of him and held tight. “You cain’t help her now. Ye go in there now and ye’ll be in as much trouble as she be in!”

Arkady struggled against him, “Let me go! She needs help!”

Raven put her hand on his shoulder, “You can’t help her now, she’s chosen her path and must go down it alone.”

He sagged in Mortichis arms, looking dejected, “But she may be hurt and need our help>”

“Yes, she might be but that scream may not have been from pain or fright it may be something else entirely,”

Zsuzanna came up to them. She signaled for Mortichi to let him go. He did and stepped back. She wrapped her arms around him and held him tightly, reaching up to stroke his hair softly, “You know Dani well enough to know she can handle almost anything. IF she needed help he would let us know. If she was in need she would have drawn power from us and she hasn’t done that. So we have to just sit and wait. I know it’s hard; it’s hard on all of us. You just have to trust in her.”

He sagged, clutching her tight, “M’Lady, I am so afraid for her. I don’t want anything to happen to her.”

She held him tighter, “We all feel the same way. We just have to wait, as hard as that is; it’s all we can do.”

He sighed, “You’re right M’Lady, but waiting is so hard.”

She sat down, pulling him with her and held him, “I know it is but it’s all we can do.”

He sighed and let her hold him, trying to patiently wait.

Darious picked her up and held her against the wall.. He lifted her robe and rammed both cocks into both her holes with no warning then started to fuck her hard fast and rough. He wrapped his wings around her then started to shred her robs with his claws, leaving long welts on her body.

She started orgasming again when he slammed into her, clutching onto his shoulders. She wrapped her legs around his hips and dug her nails into his shoulders.

He stared deep into her eyes and growled. He made both cocks swell up, filling her completely, stretching her out. He then started slamming into her so hard that she was getting bruises on her back and ass from the brick wall. He then held her tightly and started shooting deep in both her holes.

She tensed up and hissed as she felt is icy semen bathing her insides; she had forgotten how cold it was. She gripped his shoulders and rested her head on his chest.

When he finished he stood her on the floor and backed away, looking at her. “You are mine! No one else’s, mine and mine alone. No commands have changed since we were last together. Do you understand toy?”

She looked at him, “I understand M’Lord.”

He folded his arms across his chest and stared at her, “Good, you are my toy and only mine.”

She licked her lips, “Yes M’Lord, your toy.”

He chuckled and grinned, “My pet kitty cat.”

She looked at him, “Your pet M’Lord.”

He took a step closer, “My slut.”

She pressed tighter to the wall, starting to shiver, “Your slut.”

He took a step closer, “My whore.”

She watched him closely, “Your whore M’Lord.”

He stopped directly in front of her, standing to his full height and looked down at her. “I own you, every inch of your body and soul.” He grabbed her by the hair and yanked her head back, making her look up at him, “Who owns your cunt slut?”

“You do M’Lord.”

“That’s right.” He growled. “It’s my cunt. Who owns your ass slut?”

“You do M’Lord.” She said, shivering.

“Very good toy. It’s my ass to use and abuse any way that brings me pleasure. Who owns your tits slut?” He reached out and twisted her nipples roughly with his claws.

She gulped loudly, “You own them M’Lord.”

He grinned at her, fangs gleaming. “You’re learning very well toy.” He reached up and ran a claw over her lips. “Who owns this hot little mouth slut?”

She stuck out her tongue and flicked it over the tip of his claw then ran it over her lips. She then looked up at him, “You do M’Lord.”

“That’s right slut, I do. Do you see the pattern toy?”

“I do M’Lord.”

“What is the pattern toy?”

“That you own my body M’Lord. It’s yours to do with what ever pleases you.”

“My, my, my, what a smart little kitty cat you are.” He chuckled. “That’s exactly what it means toy. My personal fuck toy. The only pleasure you will get is what I chose to give you. The only pain you will get is what I chose to inflict upon you. You will only get release when I chose to let you. The only satisfaction you will get is from me. I will use you any way I see fit. You will make yourself available to me and my needs whenever I say so. You will beg me for what pleasure you receive. You will beg me for the pain I inflict upon you. You will beg for the release you so crave. If I tell you to do something you will do it with no argument or complaint. Freely and willingly you will obey me and do my bidding, whatever it maybe. You are my toy, my pet, my slut, my whore, my bitch, my cunt, my fuck toy, my personal play toy, anything I chose for you to be. Have I made myself clear toy?”

She looked up at him, Crystal clear M’Lord.”

He ran a claw down the curve of her jaw and chuckled, “Very good toy. If you behave I’ll take you to heights of pleasure you have never imagined, if you misbehave you will endure the most horrendous pain and humiliation you have ever felt in your long life. Are you following me toy?”

“I do M’Lord.” She replied softly.

“Again, very good toy.” He caressed her cheek softly and smiled. Then he pulled her into a tight hug, caressing her back softly. “I missed you my toy.”

She snuggled close to him, holding on tight to him. “I missed you so much Darious.”

“I don’t know what love is or what it’s supposed to feel like but I know I feel something for you and I care for you deeply.”

She snuggled as close to him as she could get, holding him tightly. She then looked up at him. “Darious? There are people waiting outside for me.”

He nodded, “Alright toy.”

He shifted to human form then she led him upstairs where they got dressed. They walked out to the bluff and stood looking at her friends. S he wrapped her arm around his waist and smiled up at him. He smiled down at her and put his arm around his shoulder. He then looked over the group, his gaze cool, gauging the mood and emotions of them.

Mortichi was leaning against a tree, staring off over the bluff. Zsuzanna an Arkady were sitting on the ground. He was sitting between her legs, head resting on her shoulder. She was holding him, stroking his hair softly. Raven stood off to the side watching Zsuzanna and Arkady, grinning from ear to ear. Aneeka was sitting on the edge of the bluff staring off over the valley.

Dani pressed closer to him and smiled then cleared her throat. Everyone turned and looked at her then smiled.

Mortichi looked surprised then said, “Well, I’ll be damned it actually worked.”

Aneeka stood up and stepped closer; she nodded to Dani then glared at Darious.

Raven walked over and stood by Mortichi, smiling happily.

Zsuzanna an Arkady booth stood. Arkady was relieved to see her but the sight of Darious infuriated him. Zsuzanna nodded and smiled.

Darious tightened his arm around her and smiled but his face had that ‘don’t fuck with me’ look. He could tell that no one here was thrilled to see him.

Zsuzanna stepped closer, “I see you’re fine and that you succeeded. That’s good. We were all worried.”

“Thank you for the concern, I appreciate it. It all went smoothly.” She replied.

Darious chuckled, “Smoothly? It was the bumpiest ride I have ever had.”

Dani giggled and looked up at him, “Smoothly for what it was.”

He smiled down at her, “True enough.”

Mortichi stepped forward and stood next to Zsuzanna. “You you’re Darious. Sure hope you be worth all the uproar you been causin’.”

Dani smiled up at Darious, “Oh, he’s worth it, trust me on that one.”

Darious smiled down at her and stroked her hair softly.

Mortichi cocked his head to one side and smiled, “Ifn’ you be sayiin’ so Dani.”

She smiled, “I do say so or I wouldn’t have gone through all this.

Raven stepped forward and hugged her tightly, then stepped back, “How was it?”

Dani looked at her, “Honestly? Very, very rough.”

She nodded, “Thought it might be. I would like to talk to you about it for my studies.”

Dani chuckled, “At a later day I would be more than happy to but for now I think I’m going to be busy for a while.”

Raven threw her head back and laughed, “After the honeymoon then.”

Dani grinned, “That’s fine.”

Arkady stepped foreword, after glaring at Darious he pulled Dani into a tight hug, stroking her back. “M’Lady, I was so worried for you.” He shot Darious the dirtiest look he could muster.

She hugged him tightly, “I knew what I was doing.”

Darious watched him closely; he could feel the waves of hate coming his direction. He knew he would have to watch him closely.

Arkady nodded at her, a serious look on his face. “There is always a first time M’Lady.”

Aneeka didn’t join the group, still standing by the edge of the bluff more interested in the view than the conversation. “Well, I see you got the son of a bitch back.” She then turned her back on them and sat back down.

Dani chuckled and shook her head. Aneeka had always marched to the beat of a different drummer and didn’t do well in groups but it spoke volumes that she was even here.

Darious hugged her close to him, “Gee, for a welcoming committee I don’t feel so welcome.”

Zsuzanna leveled her gaze with his. “The only reason we accept you is Dani. Her happiness means a lot to us. To be up front with you, we don’t like you and want you around.”

Mortichi stared at him, “To put it bluntly Mister, we need to know where you stand. In effect knowin’ your kind there be a lot of suspicion ’bout you. She,” he pointed at Dani, “is the only reason we be layin’ eyes on ya’. I’m a plannin’ on keeping ya downwind.”

Arkady growled long and low, eyes shooting daggers at him. “Bluntly and to the point, I hate you. Dani is a good lady and you make her happy, Fine. But you hurt her in any way and you will deal with me.”

Darious smiled down at Dani then looked at the group, eyes gleaming. “Yes Dani is a most wonderful toy. But you need to learn this puppy,” he stared at Arkady, “what I do with her is no concern of yours. I have dealt with pups before, I have their pelts to prove it, so be warned. The only reason I tolerate any of you is you’re her friends.” He turned his gaze to Mortichi, who had taken a step forward and whos anger was starting to show. “I know your reputation well so don’t unsheathe those claws or you will lose them.”

Raven put a hand on Mortichis’ arm to stop him but stood quietly watching the whole exchange, eyes bright.

Darious turned to Zsuzanna, “Now, listen to this young lady, I have no intention of usurping your people. That isn’t my nature. So call your pooches off. I don’t want to go rounds with any of you. I know I couldn’t kill and of you but I could put a hurting on your asses. And just for the record, so everyone knows, you can’t send me back to hell, only Dani can do that now.”

Zsuzanna could hear Arkady growling a warning so she put her hand up to stop him. She looked at Darious, “We seem to be on the same wave length here. You stay away from us and we won’t bother you. We don’t like you, that is fairly obvious by now, but we will tolerate you.”

Raven put her hand on Zsuzannas’ shoulder, “I don’t know about this like, dislike bit. Darious may be useful considering the problems we are currently having. We don’t want to alienate him. Arkady and Mortichi dropped the glove and challenged him. That’s not a proper greeting to someone who had just returned from the bowels of the abyss. He came out to meet us when he could have easily stayed inside. That took something.”

Dani stayed at Darious’ side, holding onto his forearm with both hands, staying quiet. She knew this was coming so she was going to let them have their say once and for all.

Darious’ cold eyes raked over them. “Like or dislike me that’s fine but you respect me. As for my uses, they are just that, MY uses, you have no control over me. I will say this now, I won’t use Dani against you so don’t do it to me.” He looked at Arkady, eyes cold as ice. “I can understand where you come from hating me; you’ve had a hard-on for her for hundreds of years now. It’s best you stay out of it and don’t pass judgment, that is neither your place nor your station,” he looked directly in Arkadys’ eyes, “toy.”

Arkady growled fangs descended and glared. Zsuzanna put her hand on his shoulder to hold him. He looked at her then to Darious. His eyes changed slightly then spoke, “Control your toy Dani.”

Darious chuckled and drew Dani close to him.

Raven put her hand on Mortichi to keep him from getting into the middle of it.

Zsuzanna pulled Arkady back slightly looking at Darious. “No problem, we’ll stay out of your business. For future reference there is something you should know, as far as we’re concerned you are Danis’ toy. Not, this may or may not be the case, that’s your business. We don’t want to fight with you. We know Dani trusts you so that counts for something.”

He looked at her, “I don’t want to be your business. MY business is lust not politics. My only other business is Dani and it stays that way. Because of my respect for her I will stay away from everything else.”

Arkady glared at him, “How dies it feel to be nothing more than a toy? She’ll soon get bored with you and send you back to hell where you belong.”

Dani sighed, shook her head and looked down. She knew Arkady was going to be upset by the whole thing but couldn’t imagine him acting like this.

Darious laughed, eyes twinkling. “Little do you know and you understand less.”

Arkady glared at him harder, “You don’t know here like I do. She likes her toys but gets bored with them quickly.”

Darious shook his head, “Poor, poor fool. Poor blind fool.”

Arkady growled, “You’re the fool if you think you’re more than a toy to her.”

Dani clung tighter to his arm and buried her face in his bicep not wanting to watch this, knowing where it was headed. Arkady didn’t know she and most of her kind were into BDSM. They kept it that way because they knew he wouldn’t understand after the abuse he suffered at the hands of Jade.”

Darious looked down at her and shrugged then stroked her hair softly. He then looked back at Arkady. “Naïve aren’t you?” His voice then got very business like. “OK Arkady let me spell it out for you so listen carefully. Have you ever heard of BDSM?”

He stiffened, “Of course I have. Fools who like to be used and abused practice it.”

Dani winced and shut her eyes. Zsuzanna lowered her head put a hand on Arkadys shoulder. Raven looked away. Mortichi sighed and looked at his feet.

Darious stroked Danis’ back softly but kept his eyes on Arkady. “OK, well, I am Danis’ Lord and Master, her Dom. It’s what she’s always wanted and needed. I’m the only being that has been able to do that for her since I’m an expert at dominance. I can give her exactly what she wants and needs. Arkady, as much as you want to be with her you need to come to the realization you can never do what she wants. You don’t have that personality. But she cares for you and wants to keep you as a friend. So, to get all this straight in your head, I’m not her toy, she is mine.”

Arkady wasn’t buying any of it. “No way would she want to do this, she’s far too refined for any of it. You’re abusive, cut and dry. She would never ask for any of that sickness.”

Darious groaned, slapped his forehead and shook his head.”

Sensing his frustration, Arkady pressed on, “Do you deny abusing her?”

Darious looked at him, “No more than she deserves when she’s being bad or good since she likes pain.”

Arkady puffed up, “So you admit to being abusive. Frown women don’t need physical punishment.”

Darious rolled his eyes, “It’s not punishment, if she likes it. If she’s being bad I won’t do it to her.”

Arkady was beside himself at the thought of this being hurting her and blurted out, “You hurt my Dani!”

Danis’ head jerked up and looked, wide-eyed at Arkady then shivered. She knew Darious’ reaction to this wouldn’t be good.

Darious growled softly and let his full demonic presence be felt. His eyes bored into Arkady. “She is not yours, she is mine little boy. MINE! You know not what you are dealing with!”

Arkady felt Darious’ presence and shivered but pressed on. “Dani is not property! Most of all she is not your property. You’re hers.”

Darious sighed and shook his head. He then turned to Dani and cupped her chin gently, stroking the side of her face softly. “Toy? I’m going to do something you’re not going to like. I don’t want to humiliate you; you know that and would not do this normally. He smiled at her, softly caressing her cheek.

She pressed her cheek into his hand and looked up at him. She sighed softly, looked down and nodded.

Zsuzanna and raven looked at each other. They knew what was coming and didn’t want to embarrass Dani further so they turned and walked away. Raven took Mortichis’ hand and led him with.

He smiled down at her then turned back to Arkady, eyes cold and hard as steel. “I am about to take you places you never knew existed. You will learn to understand. Lesson number one is this; do not call another doms’ property yours.” He turned to Dani, eyes softening. But his voice was still hard and firm. “Toy, go get your collar and run.”

She looked at Arkady and shook her head as if to say I’m sorry you have to see this then looked back at Darious, “Yes M’Lord.” She then took off towards the house, running.

Arkady stared after her, mouth hanging open.

Darious watched him, chuckling. He then grinned, “All will be known in the fullness of time Arkady. Remember patience is a virtue.”

Arkady turned to him and glared. He didn’t want to believe the woman he so loved was doing this.

Dani was quickly back. She didn’t look at Arkady, just Darious. She handed the collar to him, “Here M’Lord.”

Darious smiled at her, “Very good toy.” He looked over to Arkady. “Dani knows I pull the strings. She’s mine and she knows it. She trusts me and I would do nothing to devalue that trust, she knows it. Those are the rules, we both know that.” He stroked her hair softly, “That’s a good toy.”

Arkady stared at them, mouth open. He then glared at Darious. “You are one sick S.O.B.”

Darious ignored the remark and looked at Dani. “Toy, kneel before me.”

She did so, quickly, looking up at him

He looked her over, seeing that she still had the metal anklet he had made for her permanently affixed around her ankle on. He smiled at her then put her collar around her neck. “You are a good toy.” He then attached the least to the collar and pulled her to a standing position. Then he pushed her over, bending her at the waist. Then, spanked her ass, hard, several times.” She looked back at him, obviously turned on.

Arkady watched, mouth hanging open, not believing his eyes. It hurt him deeply to see her treated in this fashion.

He continued to spank her then said. “Look at Arkady toy. Let him see your face.”

She looked Arkady in the eyes, her passion and excitement evident.

Darious finished spanking her then rubbed her ass softly, “Do you want more toy, answer me truthfully, do you want more?”

She looked at Arkady, and then replied, “Yes M’Lord, I do.”

“Beg toy. Tell me how much you like it. Tell me how much you love it slut. Beg!”

She shivered slightly, “Please M’Lord, more. You know I love it when you spank me. Please M’Lord.”

He spanked her a couple more times then had her stand up. He looked down in her eyes and caressed her cheek softly. “You’re such a good toy. I know you didn’t like me doing that. I didn’t mean it as a punishment for you. It was a lesson, but not for you.” He pulled her close, hugging her tightly to him, stroking up and down her back softly, kissing the top of her head.

She nuzzled him softly and hugged him tightly. He smiled down at her then nodded his head in Arkadys’ direction. She turned to face him; Darious wrapped his arms around her middle. She looked at Arkady. “I tried to tell you so you wouldn’t get hurt.”

He looked at her, eyes full of pain, “Why? How come you let that thing beat you and treat you so? Women are not meant to be treated as such. It’s abhorrent M’Lady.”

“It’s hard to explain but let me try. Most people like plain, straight vanilla sex but I happen to like rocky road. After 900 years doing what I have to do to feed, straight sex becomes boring. And until I met Darious there wasn’t a creature out there that I can’t bend to my will and dominate. When all along I wanted the opposite.”

Arkady shook his head, “I don’t see why a lady of your stature acts like this. It’s disgraceful. You are a lady of respect and stature but after tonight how can I see you as such again?”

Darious held her tighter and stroked her hair softly, “Dani is a lady, very much a lady. But a lady with some very special needs.”

“Arkady, why do you think I was with the Marquis De Sade for so long? What was he known for? It sure wasn’t straight sex. He gave me what I wanted just like Darious does. I know you know what I’m talking about. We all know jade and what she’s into.” She looked him in the eyes. “Darious would never hurt me in anger, ever. What he does to me I ask him to do and like it.”

“She’s right; if I was angry with her I wouldn’t touch her.” Darious said.

Zsuzanna stepped forward and put a hand on Arkadys shoulder, looking at Dani. “I’ll take him home with me and try to explain it a little better to him. He’s hurting right now and isn’t going to grasp it at this point.” She wrapped her arm around his waist and held him close, stroking his hair softly. “Arkady, we all know what you feel for Dani and that what you just saw was a big shock but that isn’t the worst is it? The worst is knowing that she is truly happy now and has the man she wants. And now is never within your grasp and will never be with you.”

He looked at Dani, a single tear running down his cheek and nodded.

Dani looked at the ground and sighed, she felt horrible about it. She looked at Arkady, “I’m sorry you got hurt.”

Arkady looked at the ground. Zsuzanna looked at Dani. “It isn’t your fault and you know it. You told him bluntly it wasn’t to be. Now, we’re going to take our leave. Congrats Dani.” She nodded to Darious then led Arkady to the car.

Aneeka stood up and stretched. She walked over to Dani, “Since the dramatics are over I’m outta here.” She slapped Dani a high five and walked off.

Mortichi and Raven walked back over. Mortichi scratched his chin, “Quite a show y’all put on. I guess it was needin’ to be done. I’ll be leavin’ ya’ to your business.” He put his arm around Ravens waist.

Raven hugged Dani, “We’ll be going now. Give me a call in a couple weeks and we’ll talk about the ritual for my research.” She and Mortichi then walked off leaving her and Darious alone finally.

They walked over to the edge of the bluff and sat down. She curled up on his lap and snuggled up next to him. He stroked her hair softly and looked over the valley.

She ran her fingers up and down his chest. “I missed you so much Darious.”

He cocked his head to one side and looked at her, “Know what toy?”

She looked up at him, “What Darious?”

He looked down at her, “I kinda’ missed you too.” He grinned down at her, stroking her hair softly, “I missed my toy.”

She held him tightly, nuzzling her face softly into his chest, “I wasn’t the same after you were taken from me.”

He looked down at her, “You weren’t?”

She shook her head, “No, I wasn’t.”

“How were you toy?”

“Very depressed, like a part of me was missing.”

He kissed the top of her head, “To tell the truth, I wasn’t myself either. Beating and torturing lot souls just wasn’t the same.”

She giggled, looking up at him, “Know those men that took you away from me?”

His eyes and face hardened slightly, “How could I forget them?”

She chuckled and kissed the side of his face softly, “Don’t worry about them, I handled all of them.”

He looked down at her, “Handled them how>?”

She looked up at him, “I hunted each and every one of them down then killed them. I’m surprised you didn’t run into them in hell because that is where I sent them.”

He hugged her tightly and chuckled, “You didn’t save even one for me?” He kissed her on the top of the head. “They must have been sent to a different area than me or they would have relieved a very special welcome. Guess the old adage is true: hell hath no fury like a woman scorned, even if that woman had a tail and is part cat.” He stroked down her hair softly. “This was a sanctioned kill wasn’t it.”

She nodded, “Sure was. But I would have done it even if it wasn’t. I think the council knew that.”

He tilted her head back and kissed her tenderly, “Thank you toy.” He pulled her closer to him and cuddled her closely. She wrapped her arms around his neck and held him tight, resting her head on his shoulder. He nuzzled his face in her hair. “You were faithful to me the whole time I was gone. The only time you did was out of need.”

“I fed about every six months or so. That was only because I was hurting.”

He nodded, “I understand toy.”

“I didn’t feed for two years before I preformed the ritual. But I will be honest with you; I fed off 10 men before I did it. I needed all the strength I could get to be successful.”

“Toy, I am in way upset with you about that. You did what you had to do. That I understand. If you hadn’t you would have failed.”

She nuzzled his chest softly then yawned, her eyes starting to droop.

He stroked her hair softly then stood up, picking her up and carried her to the house. He carried her up to the bedroom and sat her on the edge of the bed and helped her to get undressed then stood up and undressed himself. She crawled under the covers and he joined her. She cuddled up as close to him as she could, resting her head on his shoulder and draping her arm across his chest. He wrapped his arm around her shoulder and pulled her close to him. Her eyes shut and she sighed happily. He stroked her hair until he heard her deep, regular breathing and knew she was asleep. He, gently, rolled onto his side and hugged her to his chest, holding her until he himself fell asleep.

– The End –