melissas_corner: (Carter/Dean)
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Author's Notes I: Hold mouse over highlighted text.
Author's Notes II: Despite this having every single one of Carter's scenes transcribed in it, I left out the sub plot with Ty's sister. I did this for two reasons. One, I think it's a stupid storyline, I mean c'mon. If her wrist was so bad off it needs to be pinned, she'd be wearing a brace or a temporary splint and certainly wouldn't be waving it around like she was. And two, it doesn't fit with the end of the case with the Kings as I have it written. In other words, it doesn't fit into my universe. So here, in this series, Ty is an only child.

Carter's POV:

From the moment I woke this morning I knew something big was going to happen. And I'm not talking about the bust we've been preparing for, for the past month. No, I'm fairly sure that today is The Day. Yes, with capital letters; The Day.

I've been sitting at my desk for hours finalizing some paperwork when the door to the loft clangs its warning that I'm no longer alone. I glance up and can tell from the way Dean is striding across the space toward me that he knows that today is The Day, too.

For a very real moment I don't see the jeans, grey shirt and black under shirt that Dean is wearing but the tunic-like garment that Dean told me he wore before he was Turned that he says is called a léine. It's belted with a thin piece of braided leather holding his broadsword on his left hip and he has a pair of an early version of modern day Highland boots on his feet and his hair is long and flowing in the wind with braided strands peeking out here and there. He once told me that before he married his laird's sister his braids were tied with simple pieces of leather but that after the wedding his wife would use her own ribbons to hold his braids and most times the ribbons were pulled from her own braids. In this moment I can see that Dean Bendis has always been one hell of a scary man. Definitely not someone you want to fuck over.

A shiver skates down my spine and Dean smirks when he sees it. "Today's The Day," I say when he stops in front of my desk.

"Yeah. After the bust, though."

I roll my eyes. Like I would make him Turn me, then go out for the bust. It's been days since Dean and I have had any time alone because he's been busy gathering the evidence we need to make the coming bust stick, but I'm not that hard up for it. "Of course. The reports can wait until tomorrow."

He nods, sharp, quick, decisive. He rakes his gaze down my body when I stand and my dick twitches with interest. I can honestly say I have never in my life had a lover like Dean Bendis. He's demanding but also attentive. He never takes more than he gives. In fact there have been times when I've felt guilty that he's given more than I have.

"I've missed you," I whisper, eyes locked on his. I've discovered a huge kink for his fangs and know that if I look at his mouth, I'll be hard pressed to not throw myself on him.

"I've missed you, too." He steps around the desk and gets in my personal space, backing me up against the desk.

He leans in to scent my neck, pushing his thigh between mine and rubbing our erections against each other. "I'll ask Jaimie to get Ty outta here ASAP. Not sure I'm gonna be able to wait too much longer. Been too long already."

And he's right. It has been too long already. Four months too long to be exact. Wrapping one hand around the back of his neck, I pull him into a kiss designed to make us both forget that we can't go upstairs right this minute.

Pulling back, I gulp huge lungfuls of air. "Be careful out there, okay?"

Dean rolls his eyes. "Yes, dear," he responds sarcastically. "Not my first drug bust, ya know."

I sigh and run one hand down his stubbled cheek. "I know. It's just…" I trail off and lick my lips. "I don't know what I'd do if something was to happen to you now." My voice is so soft that I'm positive he wouldn't have heard me if he wasn't a Vampire.

"I know, Carter." His voice matches mine and he copies me by running the backs of his fingers down my cheek. "I promise I'm going anywhere. Not now. Not ever."

I can't help the chuckle at how we must look, two guys being all mushy with each other. Neither Dean nor I do feelings very well but we've been trying to make more of an effort since my mini freak-out last month. Dean smiles at me and I feel like such a girl at how my heart beat increases. "I know you're not. It's just…" I shake my head. "I can't explain it. I have a bad feeling."

"Nothing's going to go wrong," he reassures me before pulling me into a kiss designed to leave me boneless.

It's succeeding when the door clangs shut and Ty calls, "Dudes! What the fuck?"

Dean and I pull apart, both of us wiping our hands across our mouths. "You got a problem with it?" Dean asks, his hands settling on my hips to keep me in place when I try to slip out from between him and the desk.

A glance over my shoulder shows Ty looking between Dean and me with a confused look on his face. "Uh…" He runs one hand over his scalp. "Naw, just so long as it doesn't interfere with work." He rubs at his eyes, hard. "So, um, are the two of you, like, gay or something?"

I finally manage to get out from between Dean and the desk. "No. We're bi-sexual. Right, Carter?" Dean reaches out and snags the back of my belt, tugging me closer.

"Yeah. Never saw any point in only being interested in one gender."

Ty just nods. "Okay. So, you promise to keep this-" He wags a finger in a circle, encompassing Dean and I. "-whatever this is, where I don't have to see it."

I can feel Dean tense beside me. Uh-oh. This ain't gonna be pretty. "Didn't realize you were homophobic, Ty."

That brings Ty up short. "Didn't say I was. Personally, I have nothing against homosexuality. I just don't want to see it. And I most definitely don't want to see the two of you going at it."

While Ty's answer is reasonable, Dean doesn't relax at all. But then again, Ty is Dean's best friend and if he has a problem with Dean and I being in love, it'll bother Dean to no end. "Are you cool knowing that Carter and I are a couple?"

One of Ty's eyebrows climbs his forehead. "Couple? Y'all are serious?"

"If you consider living together serious, then yeah, we're serious." Dean's tone is borderline hostile, not that I blame him. I can see this coming to blows soon and so try and remove his fingers from my belt. A barely audible growl, and a sudden onslaught of frustration from Dean's end of the Bond, warns me to stop trying to get away.

Ty's face breaks into a wide grin and he bounces over to slap us both on the shoulder. "Congrats, man. I had no idea. Why didn't you say something? I could have told Melissa so she'd stop badgering me to set y'all up with someone."

"Kinda keeping it on the down low, if you know what I mean," I say, managing to remove one finger from my belt.

"I understand." Ty's voice now holds a touch of disappointment that Dean didn't trust him enough to confide in him about his relationship with me.

With a sub vocal growl of my own, I give up on trying to escape Dean's hold on my belt. "Grab Jaimie and set up in the spot you picked out. I'll be there in a few." Ty nods his head, turns and heads out. Turning to Dean, I finally manage to remove his grasp on my belt. "You better go, too." Dean's nod is extremely stiff. "Dean," I start, not sure what I want to say.

"Don't worry about it, Carter. We got some bad guys to bust." Clenching his jaw, he spins on one heel and marches from the room.

"Well, fuck," I mutter, snatching my keys from the desk drawer and following my Mate from the loft.

Several minutes later, I'm sitting in my car with a fairly good view of the SUV Dean's in with members of the Venice Kings, the gang we're trying to bust. Jaimie and Ty are in another car not far away and also with a good line of sight on Dean.

So far things have been really quiet when suddenly a black motorcycle with two riders wearing German-looking war helmets and face bandanas drives slowly by setting off all my alarms. Here comes that something bad I tried to warn Dean about. I thumb my radio and call Ty, "Black crotch-rocket, two riders. I don't like it." Understatement of the year.

"Movin' kinda slow, Carter. Two males." I can tell by the tone of Ty's voice that he agrees with me.

As the bike pulls even with the SUV Dean's in, there's a pause while the two groups just look at each other before the guys on the bike pull out what I identify at this distance only as a pair of handheld automatic weapons. My blood runs cold as they open fire and hose down the back and side of the SUV, the windows exploding as if they were made from sugar glass instead of safety glass. "It's an ambush!" I can feel my heart skip a beat and the bottom of my stomach drops as I realize that Dean could be 'killed' in this ambush, ruining all our plans. "Anyone got a visual on Dean?" All I can see through the shattered rear window is Pike kneeling on the front passenger seat and firing at the retreating motorcycle.

Ty begins to scream into his radio, "Do you see Dean!?" Good to know the almost argument back at the loft earlier didn't harm Ty's feelings for Dean, and then I shove that thought to the back burner for later.

The SUV takes off and I follow at a distance. It pulls up to a house and Pike gets out with his gun drawn and confronts a couple of men sitting in front of the house. Cop cars start to pull up and I park mine between them and where Dean is standing with a pistol in his hand. Dean begins shooting in my direction while Pike starts moving back to the SUV. Dean fires above my head and I'm forced to aim my shotgun far to the side to avoid accidentally shooting him. We get off another couple of rounds at each other before I decide that should be good enough and cock my head at Dean to tell him he should go. Dean smirks and pops off a few more before dashing off and I make no move to chase him. No point, really, since I know where to find him later.

Ty and Jaimie beat me back to the office. When I walk in, I place my shotgun back down on Dean's desk and ask, "We got a status on the kid who got shot?" feeling only slightly guilty about being grateful it wasn't Dean.

Jaime walks back to her desk from the printer next to Ty's with something she's printed out. "You mean the one the Kings dumped two blocks from the ER? Yeah, he's in surgery, barely hangin' on." Jaimie's voice holds more than a hint of frustration and anger at how the boy's so called friends treated him. Especially since they were the reason he got shot in the first place.

Ty pipes up from where he's sitting on his desk, "The shooters were Lokes, defendin' their turf. Eddie Sykes tipped 'em off, most likely."

Jaimie pulls up Sykes' mug shots. "Most definitely. The most heroin Sykes has moved is a single key. Now, in the middle of a heroin drought, he tells the Kings he has five?" She spins to face me, her incredulity clear on her face.

Something isn't sitting right with me. "But why the double-cross? We have no evidence he has allegiance to the Lokes. And the Kings' money spends like any other."

"What are we really trying to do here? Get rid of whitey so the Lokes can win the heroin war?" Jaimie asks sarcasm heavy in her tone.

I smirk a bit at her question. "At least we're not racist."

Jaimie frowns at me. "I'm serious."

"The Kings are ambitious. Big ideas, big goals, they think like businessmen, not gangbangers. The Kings win the war, they'll expand the heroin business in a way the Lokes never could." I pause to think about what's more than likely going on. "So, yeah. I guess we are trying to help the Lokes, in a way."

It appears we're not going to be getting any answers tonight so we call it a day and I hope that Dean finds a way to contact me soon. It takes a lot of effort to not throw things in a fit of pique over not ending this day the way I had planned, with Dean draining me so he can Turn me and then us Bonding.

The next day Dean does manage to call. His own frustration over our canceled plans is evident in his voice, the strain making it crack slightly. "Hey. Look, I've got a problem above my pay grade here, guys."

"What's that?" I pace, holding my phone, which is on speaker, so we can all hear what Dean has to say.

"O'Neil wants me to kill Sykes and he says if I do then he'll sit down with my heroin connection."

"That all?" I walk up behind Jaimie and point at the computer. "Sykes have any warrants? Anything at all?"

Jaimie replies, "Bench warrant. Two old parking tickets."

"Bring him in," I order. Really, is it that hard?

Ty joins in, "On parking tickets?"

Dean doesn't seem to be following my train of thought today. "He wants him dead, Carter."

I just barely refrain from rolling my eyes. I understand Dean's very much on the edge because of the need to Turn me, but really, follow me here, thuit mo. "Maybe we can hide him for a bit. Buy some time."

"Look, my boy, my boy Halsey, he's gettin' edgy, I'm telling you." And he ain't the only one, if that little catch in Dean's voice is any indication.

"How edgy?" How edgy can a Human be when compared with a Vampire who has had to postpone Turning and Bonding with his Mate?

"What you might expect from a civilian who saw some kid get shot five times in the stomach-edgy."

Jaimie scoffs, "A civilian? We popped him for selling four keys of coke."

"Okay, who's talking to you? And what does that mean, anyway?" Oh, but Dean is so going to get it from her later, unless I can convince her to let it slide due to him fighting his instincts to take me somewhere private and Turn and Bond with me. "All right? It's okay to get him killed?"

"I'm just saying." Jaimie shrugs.

"Yeah, what are you saying?" And now I want to smack Dean. Being on edge is one thing, taking it out on someone like Jaimie is another and is something I don't usually let slide.

"He's a criminal, not a Sunday school teacher!" Jaimie tries to justify her viewpoint.

"He's an ex-drug addict who joined the gang in prison, okay? So he wouldn't get raped. He's scared."

"What's your point?" As much as I want this over now I can't let Dean run roughshod over everything.

"He knows I'm a cop. He flips, I'm dead. That's my point."

I point at Ty. "Bring him in."

"Arresting him is a bad idea." Dean's agitation is making itself known through the Bond. Since we're not fully Bonded yet I know he must be about to Vamp out and end this now if I can feel it this strongly.

"Who says we're gonna arrest him?" I sense rather than hear, Dean's growl of frustration before he ends the call. Turning to Ty and Jaimie, I say, "Let's do this."

When we arrive at Sykes' apartment, Ty begins pounding on the door and the sounds of someone scrambling around inside can be heard. After I give the signal, Ty busts in, gun drawn, yelling, "Police, freeze!"

Sykes backs up across the room, his hands raised in surrender. "Whoa, whoa, what did I do? What the hell did I do?"

I walk in and see he's holding something in one of his hands. Stepping up to him, I knock it from his grasp and put my gun under his chin. This son of a bitch almost got my Mate killed. I'm nearly positive that both Ty and Jaimie would back me up if my finger was to 'slip' on the trigger and blow his head off. "You park your deVille in a handicapped zone?"

Sykes begins shaking slightly and says in a quiet, scared voice, "What are you talking about?"

"Time to pay the piper," I snarl. I'm hanging onto my sanity by my fingernails here.

Ty has been checking the apartment and calls, "Clear." I remove my gun from under Sykes' jaw but make sure he can still see it. "Spotless, too. I don't buy it."

Pressing my gun into Sykes' cheek, I order over my shoulder, "Turn this place upside down." Sykes gulps loudly.

I push him down into a chair, leaving him untied, while Ty pokes around and Jaimie stands next to me. "Why'd you set up the Venice Kings? Huh? What the Lokes offer you?"

"Look, I didn't set anybody up. All right? I've never even heard of the Venice Kings." Sykes tries to get us to leave, must mean he's got a lot to hide.

"Well, they know you, Sykes. They put a hit on you," I inform him, watching the color drain from his face.

When Ty begins digging through a small duffel, Sykes becomes agitated, but when Ty approaches a built-in full of books and other knick-knacks, Sykes yells, "What's he lookin' for?"

"Termites. They killed five people recently. You wanna be number six?" I'm surprised at how badly I want to beat this guy senseless.

Sykes is shocked by what I just told him. "What? Fellas, ma'am, no, you got me mixed up with somebody else. I'm, I'm a financial consultant. I never even-" His face pales even further when we hear Ty open up a knife. "Yo, what the hell are you lookin' for, brother? Hello?" He leans around me, trying to see what Ty's up to. I turn and see that Ty has found a crack in the wall and is taking down the shelves and all the crap on them to reveal a shit load of money. Suddenly, Sykes jumps up. "I know what is there to the penny!"

Jaimie shoves him back down into the chair. "Sit down." I'm beginning to think she's feeling how edgy Dean and I are and is reacting accordingly.

Sykes doesn't give up, and shouts around her, "Down to the penny, you understand? You got no right comin' in here, goin' through my walls. You need a warrant! Fourth Amendment!"

I glance idly at the money, then back to Sykes. "You want it confiscated? Ill-gotten gains? Or walk away with every penny? Up to you. How did you wire up the hit on the Venice Kings today?"

I think Sykes is beginning to get where we're headed with this. "I didn't wire up jack! Look, Darnell Wallace runs 28th Street Lokes. He said he'd pay if I told him the next time somebody was lookin' to score big-time smack."

I frown down at where Sykes is sitting. "What, he wants a monopoly on the smack trade? What's he holding?"

"Nothin', it's a ghost town. Now, about my money." Why do I feel like he's lying to me?

"You play ball, sit in a cell for a week, then disappear, you can keep your cash." I give him my best offer.

Sykes scoffs, "Yeah, right."

Putting on my most patronizing tone, I reply, "So cynical. Makes me kinda sad." I then turn around and tell Ty, "Scour the pad for the rest of the dope. And then voucher the money." Ty is staring at the stacks of money and doesn't seem to hear me. "You hear me?"

Ty eventually looks up, surprised to find me frowning at him. "Yeah." I know him and Melissa are having money problems, what with him wanting to provide more for her than he can really afford, but I didn't realize it was bad enough for him to contemplate taking money from a bust.

"Ty?" I step closer, my head tilted, trying to catch his eye.

He visibly shakes himself. "No, I'm good." He turns and begins searching the rest of the apartment. Catching Jaimie's eye, I motion for her to keep an eye on Ty before I turn and head back to the loft.

After another nearly sleepless night where I do my best to not say fuck it all and drive over to the Kings' base of operations and drag Dean away so we can do what needs to be done, namely him Turning me and us Bonding, I'm stationed in a SWAT van while Jaimie is in position to watch Ty drive up to the door for the buy.

Jaimie calls over the radio, "He's in."

I respond, "In position."

Ty informs us, "I see Dean, Halsey, Pike, and O'Neil."

A voice I'm guessing belongs to O'Neil, greets Ty, "Mr. Corona. The goods?" The sound of a trunk opening reaches my ears. "This way, my man, let's get started. What are you drinking?" There are sounds of them walking around and getting comfortable, possibly sitting in an office of some kind. "Tell me how you do it," O'Neil orders.

"So we line sealed packets in, thank you-" He must have accepted a drink. "-frozen shark carcasses on their way to the Miami fish market. They get weighed through customs, take a little detour, Hector Corona gets what's his, and the market gets its fish. Simple."

"That's incredible," O'Neil says and I'm not sure if he's impressed or not.

"Mind if I take a peek at the other half of this equation?" It appears Ty has picked up on mine and Dean's frustration, despite not knowing the reason for said frustration.

"Who else do you do business with?" I really hate it when the bad guys know how to think.

"It's confidential." Leave it to Ty to find a way to try and keep the lie from getting any bigger. But it might backfire on us in a spectacular way.

"Why, what are you? Are you a priest or are you a drug dealer?"

"Chin-chin de la dos." Gonna have to ask Dean later what that means.

"Me no speaka… whatever."

"That means 'I'm a little bit of both'." Okay, so maybe I don't need to ask, or maybe I need to ask if what Ty just said is really what it means.

"He's done business with my friend from Sacramento. Guy named J.K. Landers." Dean's snitch, Halsey, interjects.

"And how do you know him?" O'Neil demands details.

"We were in juvenile together. He's a good guy." Guy's good on his feet. Thinks real fast. Might just have to think about offering him a job.

"It's on your name, brother." This guy won't think twice about killing anyone, especially someone like Halsey.

"Forty-five percent," a new voice says. Must be the guy testing the drugs.

"That's a good number for takin' over Venice." I'm thinking O'Neil is really close to accepting what we're selling.

"Like I said, man. Only the best." The sound of a briefcase being opened is heard. "That's good. Very good." Ty gives the signal.

"It's done. At the ready," I call over the radio. Thank God, this is almost over. The silence in the van is interrupted by the sound of a full team of SWAT readying their weapons.

"It's the last piece, brother. This time tomorrow we own Venice." O'Neil's voice is extremely smug.

"I thought Venice was the Lokes'. They may have a little opinion on that."

O'Neil chuckles, "Well, won't none of them be around to voice their opinion. They'll be gone in a puff of smoke. Keep an eye on the news tomorrow."

Aw, fuck! "No…" I can't stop the whispered moan from escaping. That little son of a bitch! How dare he? I swear, if there's even one more thing that pushes this back, I'm not going to be responsible for my actions.

Ty wonders, "So, any place I should stay away from, so I… so I stay safe?"

I can almost hear the smirk in O'Neil's tone. "Stay east of the 405 for the rest of the day. Unless you don't mind gettin' ash on your silk shirt."

I clench my hand so tight around the radio, I'm afraid I'll break it in two. "You gotta be kidding me…" I open and close my hand around the radio before suddenly slamming it down on the dashboard. "Dammit." I exit the van, doing my best to not stomp my foot like a toddler who hasn't gotten his way. So close. So fucking close. But if O'Neil is saying what I'm pretty damn sure he's saying…

Jaimie calls on the radio, "What's goin' on, Carter? We goin' in or not?" How to tell her we can't do anything because of the fucking bomb? "It's a whole lot easier to bust these assholes with the doors open. Are we movin' in or not?"

Reaching back inside the van, I grab up my radio and say through gritted teeth, "No! Abort the arrest! Repeat, abort. The arrest." I think I'm going to be punching something soon, and hard. How could a simple little bust go so fucking wrong?

"Why?" Jaimie asks, perplexed.

"There's a bomb."

"A bomb? Where?" Her confusion equals my own.

"That's a hell of a question."

I'm so pissed about having to postpone what is basically my wedding night, again, I just send everyone home without any explanation, not that Jaimie needs one.

After yet another sleepless night where I'm alone in Dean's bed, I get a call from Dean. "I had no choice, Dean. There's a damn bomb out there!" How can he not see that this takes precedence?

"You have any idea what you're doing, Carter?" Not really, do you!?

"You didn't hear O'Neil talking about a bomb?" He should have, according to Ty Dean was in the same room.

"He is talking smack, man."

"And if he's not?"

"Okay, then we bust him and then we get him talkin'."

"He spent half his life in jail; he doesn't care if he goes back!" I run the fingers of one hand through my hair.

"If Halsey cracks, he's dead. And then, they kill me." His voice does that stressed cracking thing again.

"He made this bomb out to be something big! We're talking innocent people!"

I can actually hear him grinding his teeth. "I'm tellin' ya, Carter, I don't know how much my boy Halsey can take of this." And not just Halsey if what I'm feeling from his end of the Bond is any indication.

"Listen to me. You are in. Until we find this bomb. You hear me? If you're nervous? Find it fast." And how I hate having to say that. I hang up the phone and take a deep breath to get myself back under control. "C'mon, Jaimie. Let's go take a ride."

"Carter," Jaimie calls. "About what you just did-"

I don't let her finish. "It's a necessary evil, Jaimie. We got to find this bomb." I give her a nod to try and let her know we can finish this conversation in the car, away from where Ty's counting the money taken from Sykes' wall.

Once in the car, she puts her hand on my arm. "I know what you've had to give up this week. We're all trying to get this over and done with-"

Again, I don't let her finish. "You don't know shit! You and Jon aren't anywhere near where Dean and I are. So, please, don't use that 'I understand what you're going through' crap with me, okay?" When she flinches, I feel bad for yelling at her but why can't the one person who knows about Dean fucking understand that platitudes are not going help in this case. Heaving a deep sigh, I run my hands down my face. "Sorry. What I need is to find this bomb so we can do what Dean needs."

She nods, dropping the topic and we just drive in circles until I feel calm enough to let her and Ty go off to Sykes' place to get the address of the most likely place for the bomb.

Ty and Jaimie return with a briefcase which Ty flips open but instead of a bomb, there's only money. "You gotta be kidding me."

"Anything?" I approach where he has the briefcase open on his desk.

"Some guns, some coke, no trace of explosives." Jaimie is getting pretty close to the edge herself. Although, until her and Jon are in a similar position, she'll never understand exactly how tightly wound Dean and I currently are.

"Anybody got a location on Darnell Wallace?" I ask, fingering the money in the case.

"If they do, they aren't talking," Jaimie responds.

"All right, communicate that to Dean." If I do it, I'll just end up demanding he find a way to disappear so we can Bond.

"Don't these guys know we're in the middle of a damn recession? Jeez." Ty is still eyeing the cash. I'll have to keep an eye on him. Not that I think he'll actually do anything, but if he's tempted he might do something even stupider than taking some money off the top.

After calling Dean to let him know of the recent developments, Jaimie pulls up O'Neil's mug shots and is studying his dossier. "He's been locked up twenty-five of his forty years. Folsom, Pelican Bay, he led a gang in San Quentin."

All this delay is about to drive me fucking bat shit and has me pacing the loft. "Family?"

"Uh, mother's in a nursing home, but no wife, no kids," Jaimie replies.

Ty interjects with, "I got a note here on a girlfriend, Marcella Vasquez, twenty-five."

"She got a record?" I've got to find a way to use her as leverage. It's the only way I can see to wrap this up in time.

"Clean as a whistle. She's a receptionist at some accounting firm in Playa Del Rey." Ty reads from the file in his hand.

"We've tried everything. So…"

Ty's head snaps up. "What?"

Why are they not following me here? "Let's grab the girlfriend."

"For what?" Leave it to Jaimie to object.

"Leverage." Jaimie's mouth drops open. "You got a problem?" My brows lower over my nose as I frown down at where she's sitting. She of all people knows why I need this to happen, yesterday.

"She's a secretary," Jaimie says as if that means anything.

I shrug. "So?"

"Dating a criminal doesn't make you one." And she would know. Oh, wait, in her case it wasn't true.

"You read that in a fortune cookie?" Damn, now I'm snapping at her.

"This woman didn't do a damn thing, Carter!"

"Neither did the innocent people her prick boyfriend's about to kill! And none of them are screwing him!"

Jaimie shakes her head and stands up, getting in my face as much as she can and not cross the line into insubordination. "You're out of bounds, Carter." And so are you, little girl.

I don't back down an inch. "Go talk to her nice. Woman to woman. Maybe light some scented candles, run her a bath. Just get her in here. Now." I growl, doing my best to not employ one of Gibbs' methods of getting his people to do their job without any back-talk. I may be willing to yell at her but I refuse to think about wanting to hit her for being so damn slow, so… so Human about this whole goddamn mess.

About an hour later, Ty and Jaimie return with the girlfriend, a hood over her head. Jaimie sits her on a stool in the kitchen and pulls the hood off. "You scream, this tape goes back on."

Marcella asks, "Who are you? Why am I here?"

"Quiet," Jaimie warns her. I see Jaimie poke her head around the wall as I walk over to where Ty's standing by my desk so I can hand him the phone.

"Who's this?" O'Neil's voice can be heard over the speaker.

Ty puts on his gruff thug voice. "I'm callin' on behalf of Darnell Wallace and the 2-8 true blue Loke nation, foo'. We got told you lookin' to do us some harm."

"Aww, you got nothin' to worry about. It's not gonna hurt a bit, Mr. No-Name. You'll think you got tickled."

"We'll see on that. You tell us where the bomb's at, G, or we put a nice bullet in your pretty little girlfriend's head. Marcella, right here, right now. She look fine, too."

"What the hell are you talking about?"

"The smile off your face now, little bitch? Huh? You smilin' now, little bitch?"

"What do you want?" I think we have his attention now.

"We wanna know where the bomb's at. Because if you don't, Marcella ain't never gonna make it back home. And before she gets to say 'what up' to Allah, she really gonna know what it's like to love a black man, you cracka boy." Jaimie brings Marcella out with the hood covering just her eyes. "This is your little boyfriend, he dyin' to hear your voice."

"Baby? Baby, is that you? I'm so scared." Marcella's voice cracks. I nod at Jaimie that that's enough. "Who are these people, what-" Jaimie begins pulling her backward. "No please don't-"

I hear Jaimie hiss, "Quiet!" as she marches Marcella back to the kitchen.

"I'm telling you, man, you hurt her and I'll blow your brains out." Aw, the big bad leader of the Kings has a soft spot for his girlfriend. Good. That'll make this a lot easier.

Ty doesn't miss a beat, sneering at the phone. "Well then, tell us where the bomb at, G! Tit for tat, homie. Tit. For. Tat." When Ty glances at me, I nod approvingly.

"That's not how this is gonna work, G. Okay? You give her up. And then you get the location of the device."

"No, I make the rules. I tell you when you get your girl back. All right?" Suddenly my phone beeps, telling me I have a text message. I almost don't answer it when I see it's from Dean but then I figure he wouldn't risk everything on a sexy text message. When I open the message, I see it's a picture of a map with "CD'A" written on it. I show it to Ty who just shrugs.

What sounds like papers being swept off a desk in anger filters through the phone. "You listen to me, you dumb gangster son of a bitch-"

Ty doesn't let him finish that thought. "I know we don't got much time, which sadly for you means Marcella ain't got much time either."

"What do you know? How do you know how much time you got?"

"Lokes got eyes everywhere, I told you, we been doin' this for a minute, man."

Jaimie pacing in the hall near the bathroom catches my attention and I stalk over to where she's standing. "Where is she?"

Jaimie frowns up at me. "She's in the bathroom. That okay?" I can't let her being angry with me deter me from getting this over with sooner rather than later.

I stifle a growl of frustration. "C D apostrophe A-" I hear the bolt on the bathroom door being undone. "-what could that mean?"

Jaimie shakes her head and shrugs. "California something, I, I don't know."

The door slowly opens and Marcella comes out of the bathroom at just that moment and I turn to her. "You hear the question?"

Marcella responds, "I don't know who you guys are or what you want from me, but I don't know anything."

I shout at her, "Did you. Hear. The question?"

She cowers against the door at her back. "I don't have a clue!"

"Gag her!" I order, stepping closer to do just that and Marcella attempts to stab me overhand in the shoulder with a pair of scissors but I catch her arm and slam her against the wall hard enough to rattle her teeth. Better people than you have tried to keep me from my Mate, Sweetheart. "Pull your gun out and aim it at her head. Do it! If she doesn't stop fighting and drop the scissors in two seconds, blow her brains out." I shake Marcella's wrists, and she's obviously scared out of her goddamn mind, but she doesn't drop the scissors. "One! Two." I wait an extra second and Marcella drops the scissors with a barely audible whimper. I look at Jaimie and then stalk away, completely ignoring Marcella sinking to the floor and crying.

As I reenter the main area, I hear O'Neil yelling, "What are you doing to her?"

"Trying to see what she knows, since you ain't bein' very helpful," Ty replies.

"Man, she doesn't know anything." O'Neil is still trying to convince us to let Marcella go.

"We'll see about that." Wonder if Melissa knows just how well Ty plays a thug.

Jaimie has Marcella cuffed to the chair again and I march up to her with the hood in his hand. "Please, no, please…" she begs.

Jaimie joins in to tell me, "She's claustrophobic."

I can't let that sway me. I was supposed to be fully Bonded to my Soul Mate several days ago, now, but because of her asshole of a boyfriend, it hasn't happened and is beginning to look like it won't for a while still. "Tough."

Marcella sobs, "Why are you doing this?"

I bend down close to her ear. "Because your boyfriend planted a bomb. Okay? He's planning to kill innocent people. He started this. Not me." I put the hood on her head and keep a grip on the top of it and inadvertently grab some hair. "CDA. C. D. A. What does it mean? C D apostrophe A! What does it mean!?" I give her head a brief shake to make sure I have her attention. Not that she can ignore me when I'm pulling her hair.

Marcella, who sounds like she's working on a very lovely panic attack, sobs, "Wait! Wait! I heard him on the phone the other day, he mentioned a street, Couer D'Alene, I don't know, is that it?"

I yank the hood off and stomp back into the main room where Ty is still on the phone with O'Neil. "What's that? Why you discussin' turf wars and heroin deals when we 'bout to cut your girl up piece by piece?" I dig a street map out of my desk and circle on the map where Couer D'Alene is and then shove the map at Ty before heading to the 'tool chest' and pulling out a shotgun. "Look, G, the homies is out searchin' Couer D'Alene right now, and if they find the bomb before you tell us where it's at, it ain't gonna be a good end for your girl. She gonna be lyin' in a pool of gasoline. You don't want that. So give up the info, right here, right now, she walks away free. If you don't, it's not a good thing. End of story, game's over."

O'Neil finally capitulates. "It's in a brown Toyota, twenty-three oh two. It's in the trunk."

"How much time we got?"

"Twenty minutes."

"How much?" Ty makes him repeat it.

"You got twenty minutes!"

I flick my head at Ty to let him know he can end the call however he wants and head back to the kitchen. "Jaimie?" I call softly, getting a glare in return. I can't afford to apologize right now. Maybe after Dean and I have a solid forty-eight hours alone, but not now. "Let her go." The anger fades a bit at my statement and she nods before uncuffing Marcella and escorting her from the loft.

In the neighborhood where the bomb has been planted, SWAT is waving the residents out of the houses. There's a lot of screaming and panicking but eventually we get everyone out.

Ty falls into step with me and asks, "How much time we got?"

I shrug. "I don't know, a minute? Maybe less?"

"I was hoping for something a little more encouraging than that, Carter."

I ask one of the bomb guys running past. "Did you diffuse it?"

"Most of it," is the reply.

"What do you mean 'most of it'?"

"It means it's time to get the hell out of here!" he says just seconds before the bomb explodes. I don't even flinch but Ty almost drops to the ground.

I tell Ty, "Text Dean. Tell him to grab Halsey and cut him loose. Then grab Jaimie and bust O'Neil."

Hours later, back at the office, I'm leafing through some papers on my desk and Jaimie's sitting on the floor against a file cabinet not too far away and holding a Heineken beer bottle. Halsey is free, O'Neil is dead, and Dean is taking a much-needed shower and decompressing. He'll come to me when he's calmed down and the coast is clear, because the last thing he or I want is witnesses to this long-awaited special thing we're about to do.

Jaimie says softly, "I killed that man today." I look up and take my glasses off, silently encouraging her to tell me more. "O'Neil?" I sit down in a chair facing her, leaning forward with my arms braced on my knees. "Man's trash, right down to his bone marrow. So, I, uh, I drink myself to sleep a few nights, and move on." If she hadn't done what she did, I'd be planning how to leave town with Dean.

It's thoughts of what could have happened that has my voice coming out a little roughly. "Sounds like a good plan." And one I've used many a time.

"If I'd had to kill that woman, Marcella Vasquez…" Are we on that, now?

"I made a judgment call. It worked," I remind her.

"This time," she reminds me.

"That's all that matters." Well, that and that Dean's still alive and kicking and just waiting for her to finish her pity party and leave.

Ty comes in and sets the briefcase down on a table. Jaimie gets up and walks off and I sit there chewing on my lip a little. "Three hundred and fifty K, courtesy of Venice Kings."

"Is it all there? Or did O'Neil shortchange Mr. Corona?" I can't stop the smile from crossing my face at my own little joke. "I hear drug dealers do that sometimes." I look from the briefcase back to Ty. "I wasn't planning on counting it." I know for a fact he'd never actually take any, but if he is ever tempted, I plan on covering his ass. Maybe I should speak to Dean about this. Ty's staring at me with his head tilted like he can't quite figure what I'm up to, almost as if he's afraid I'm testing him, and I just smile at him.

Dean strides into the loft as Ty's walking out and the moment Dean and I are alone I grab his lapels and pull him to me so I can attack his mouth with mine. He wraps his arms around my waist, fisting his hands in my shirt and engages my tongue in a heated battle for dominance of the kiss.

Just as we both start really getting into the kiss, the door bangs open and Ty's voice rings out, "Dudes, get a room, already."

I pull back to look at Ty over Dean's shoulder, ignoring Dean's growl of protest. "Coulda sworn you left."

"Did. Got to the corner and realized I forgot Melissa's present." Ty opens one of his desk drawers and pulls out a flat, light blue box. "She's pissed enough as it is. If I forgot this-" lifting it high, he shakes his head in a 'My ass would be so much grass' kind of way. "I'm serious about the room, guys. You both swore your personal shit wouldn't ever show up here." He doesn't even let either of us respond before he's back out the door.

Dean hadn't let go of me, although he did behave in so much as he didn't start nibbling on my neck, the whole time Ty was in the room almost as if he's afraid I'll rabbit now that the time to Turn me has arrived. As if, to coin a phrase.

The moment we're alone again, Dean shifts his hold to one of my hands and all but drags me up the stairs, closer than the elevator, and into our apartment. We step through the door and into each other's arms at the same moment.

Dean's kisses taste of a desperation I've never before witnessed in my Mate. It's as if now that the time has arrived he's letting the need to Bond bubble to the surface. His hands are likewise telegraphing the same need to my body. "Easy, Dean." I try and slow the frenzied way he's tearing at my clothes and backing me across the space to the bedroom.

"No! God, Carter, how can you be so fuckin' calm?" He growls low in his throat when he fumbles the buttons on my shirt before he takes two fistfuls of the material and pulls, ripping it open and causing buttons to go flying in every direction.

"Damnit, Dean! This is a good shirt." He just snorts and removes the tattered pieces along with my undershirt before turning his attention to my jeans. "Dean." I have to get him to slow down. I understand his urgency and feel it too, but he could seriously hurt me if he doesn't slow down. "I understand, Dean, but this isn't something that should be rushed. Don't you agree?"

He wraps his fingers around two of my belt loops and tugs me closer. "I find I can't wait. It's been too long already. God, Carter, it's been over a thousand years." His voice cracks under the strain of not throwing me to the ground and just taking what he knows is his.

"How about I take the edge off, hm?" He shakes his head and pulls me down on top of him when he tumbles backward onto the bed. "What? Dean Bendis is refusing a blowjob? Will wonders never cease?"

"Fuck me, Carter." He swallows. "Fuck me hard and then I should be able to make your Turning last as long as you want."

I grin down at him. He doesn't demand for me to fuck him hard very often but when he does he means for me to make it hurt in the best way possible. "I think I can do that. Hands and knees or flat on your back?"

"Against the wall?"

His request has my dick swelling in the tight confines of my jeans. "Fuck, Dean," I snarl, standing up and shedding the remainder of my clothes.

"That's the idea, Carter." He scrambles off the bed and starts throwing off his clothes so he can brace himself with his arms outstretched, palms flat against the wall in order to present me with a mouthwatering view of his naked ass.

"You're a slut for it, aren't you?" Taking the lube from the bedside drawer, I slick my cock, knowing he won't thank me for taking the time to prep him first. Lining up behind him, I grab his hips to hold him steady, then slam home until I'm buried balls deep. The lack of resistance tells me he had found some time somewhere during the past twenty-four hours to play with himself and the thought has my hips stuttering, pulling a moan from deep within him. "Damn, Dean, how'd you find time to play with this pretty hole of yours?"

"Went to the bathroom before it all went down. Knew this was gonna happen tonight. Didn't want you to have to-" His voice trails off on a high pitched squeal when I shift angles and nail his prostate dead on. "Fuck, Carter."

I chuckle and run my hands up and down his back, taking perverse pleasure in the tremors that are wracking his frame. Wrapping my hands over his shoulders, I ride him as hard as I can until I see stars while emptying myself inside him. Seconds later he comes with a shout, painting the wall in front of him with his come.

I collapse over his back, panting hard. "Did that do the trick?"

"Oh, yeah." He squeezes his muscles in an effort to keep my softening dick from slipping out of his ass. "I love when you fuck me like you're about to die."

"Just imagine how much better that'll be once you Turn me."

He groans and stands up straight before turning to face me so he can capture my lips in a kiss that is only slightly less urgent than the ones before. "Can we get to the main event, now?" Dean's so cute when he's whining.

I can't resist kissing the tip of his nose which causes him to softly growl, "Don't do that." He jerks his head away and then steps around me to get to the bed where he flops down on his back, legs splayed wantonly while stroking his dick which is slowly beginning to harden again.

"I love that you have a recovery period of a nanosecond," I chuckle, climbing up on the bed to stretch out on top of him, my chin resting on my hands which are stacked on his chest.

He thumps me in-between my eyes. "You look like a woman lying on me like this."

"Well, if my dreams are actual memories, I've been a woman twice."

"That right?" He tugs on my hair. "You ready for this, Carter? I mean, really ready? You're going to die, you know."

I lean up, take his face in my hands and place a kiss to his lips. "I know, Dean. You and Janet did your best to inform me of what's going to happen. I'm ready. More than, actually. Take me, Turn me, Bond with me, thuit mo."

"God, Carter," he groans, rolling us so that he's on top.

He shifts to grab the lube from where I dropped it on the bedside table. Sitting back on his knees between my legs, he takes his time smearing some between his fingers.

Pulling my knees in toward my chest, I grasp the back of them to give him better access. "Now who's the slut, huh?" He chuckles softly and places a gentle kiss to the inside of my right thigh that is so at odds to how we're both feeling right now.

"I thought you were eager to Turn me." I do my best to goad him into going faster.

"And here I thought you were looking at your Turning and our Bonding as our wedding night. Please tell me you didn't throw Nicole to the floor and have at her on your wedding night. Carter, you should know better than that."

I do know better. My wedding night with Nicole was exactly how she wanted it; slow and sweet at first then fast and furious enough to disturb the neighbors. But despite what Dean said, I think a wedding night between two guys can be hard and rough and nasty while still being full of love. "Totally different, Dean." I shift my grip. I'm not as young as I used to be and this position isn't that easy to maintain nor is it very comfortable.

Dean just smirks down at me and finally begins to prep me. He doesn't take his time, thankfully, and before long he's got three fingers in my ass and is slicking his dick with his free hand. Bracing himself over me on one hand he uses his other to line himself up and press against my hole. "You sure you're ready for this?" I can see his uncertainty in his eyes.

I let go of my legs so I can wrap them around his waist and my hands around the back of his neck, linking my fingers together. "I can't begin to tell you how ready I am. It feels like I've been waiting for this, for you, all my life." I tug until he lowers his head enough for me to brush a kiss across his lips. "Please don't make me wait any longer." I know I'm begging but I don't care.

Dean bows his head for a second or two and when he lifts it, my breath catches in my throat at the love shinning in his eyes. Pressing in slowly, he balances on his hands, his eyes locked with mine. "I've never done this before. Nick has been after me for years to Turn someone so that when I found you I'd know how to do it right but I wanted you to be my first."

I love the feel of him entering me but I really wish he'd move faster. "Is that why you've been on the phone so much?"

"Yeah." When he bottoms out he settles on his elbows, his hands cupping my head. "Tim and Tony have been giving me instructions since they were both able to take their time Turning their Mates."

He begins to slowly thrust in and out using long strokes and avoiding my prostate. "We're gonna do this right." His voice is rough and I can't quite suppress a shiver as it rolls over me like gravel.

Pulling his head down, I seal my mouth to his sweeping my tongue inside to tangle with his. Moving one hand up his skull to clutch the back of it, I dig the nails of the other into the skin of his left shoulder. Hooking my ankles beneath his ass, I urge him to fuck me faster, a request he doesn't seem inclined to grant judging by the way he actually slows down. I pull back from the kiss to gulp lungfuls of air and glare at him. He just smirks and shifts to nail my prostate causing my eyes to roll back in my head. "Dean, please!"

Dean shifts his hold from my hair to the sheets under us and finally begins to fuck me like there's no tomorrow.

Eventually I can see him giving over to the Vampire side of his nature. When his eyes begin to glow a warm amber, I throw my head back, baring my throat and, using gentle pressure on the back of his skull, urge him to bite me.

With a growl so low it's almost in the sub-vocal range, Dean seals his mouth over my neck and bites down.

I've had lovers that like to bite but those were mere pinpricks when compared to the feeling of a thousand year old Vampire in the throes of blood lust biting his Mate for the first time. I let out a strangled howl, thankful that Dean has no neighbors, and my back arches off the bed as the pain pushes me over the edge and I have the best orgasm of my life.

When I am once again aware of my surroundings, I can feel Dean still lazily thrusting in and out of my ass. I can also hear him swallow as he drinks my blood.

I shiver as my mind shows me an image that until a few months ago was foreign to me; Dean drinking from a Donor. Only this time the Donor is me and he's not just feeding, he's draining me so he can Turn me.

Eventually he lifts his head and reaches for a knife that is lying on the bedside table. He slashes his right wrist, opening the vein and places it against my mouth. Wrapping both hands around his arm, one around his wrist and the other around his elbow, I suck on the gently weeping wound; the taste metallic and bitter against my tongue.

Our eyes locked, I continue to drink his blood while watching my blood drip down his chin. When he sneers I can see my blood dripping off his fangs.

Too soon, he's pulling his arm away from my mouth. I reluctantly release my grip on his arm with a whine that turns into a moan when he licks the wound closed. Then he wiggles his left hand behind my head so he can lift it enough to lean down and attack my mouth. He thrusts once, twice, three times and then stiffens as he climaxes.

Releasing my mouth, he pulls out and moves to the side so he can roll me to my right side and wrap his arms around me. "I'm so sorry," he whispers, pressing tiny kisses to my shoulders.

It takes me longer then I would have thought to die. At first the pain is bearable enough but soon it spikes through me, arching my back, my mouth open on a silent scream of agony. Dean's arms tighten around my waist. I can feel where he has his face pressed against the back of my neck, his tears scalding on my skin.

I know he said I was going to die, that he was going to have to kill me but until now, feeling my heart begin to slow, the pain of my organs ceasing to function, my breathing becoming labored, I really hadn't stopped to consider what it would mean to actually die. Despite my objections just last month, I had no clue what it meant, how much it breaks his heart to have to inflict this on me. With my last ounce of strength, I wriggle around until I'm face to face with him. Cupping one hand around his cheek I stroke his cheekbone with my thumb. "Dean," I gasp. I'm almost out of breath. I have to let him know it'll all be just fine while I can still talk. "Dean. I'll be okay. This is what-" My body stiffens as my heart beats its last and I begin to panic when I can't draw another breath.

Everything goes dark and I lose all track of time. I have no idea if I've been unconscious for mere minutes or for over an hour. I can feel Dean's fear as if it's my own and it makes me think it's been closer to an hour or more. In his panic he rolls me to my back none too gently. "Carter! Damnit! Carter!" he shouts, his hands gripping my face painfully tight as he shakes me, trying to force a response. "Don't do this to me! Carter!" His voice breaks on my name and his anguish washes over me.

I struggle to let him know I'm still here. The heat of his hands, the desperate sound of his voice, the bright white of our Bond are beckoning but from a distance. I can't… It's too far… I won't be able… I fight to remember that this is supposed to happen, that I'm not truly dead but it's difficult to not let the overwhelming sadness and despair pull me down into the never ending and uncompromising darkness. Down the path to true death. A place I've been six times before and vow to never go again.

Just as I think all is lost, an invisible hand reaches down and grabs me by the scruff of my neck and yanks me up from the depths. I break the surface and if I was still human, still alive, I'd be gasping like a man who has finally surfaced after almost drowning and force my eyes open.

The first thing I see is the grief-stricken face of my Beloved Mate. "Dean," I croak.

"Oh, my God, Carter! I thought something had gone wrong. That I had fucked it up. I-" he trails off, biting his lower lip.

"It's fine. I'm fine. You did it perfectly," I reassure him and he lowers his head to rest his forehead against mine.

My arms feel like lead but I manage to find the strength to lift them and wrap them loosely around his upper back, pulling him down until he's lying flush on top of me. He buries his face in my neck and lets out the grief, anger, torment, nerves and stress of the past millennium in gut-wrenching, heart breaking sobs that leave the pillow beneath our heads soaked with his tears.

Eventually his sobs taper off, leaving him limp from the release of all that emotion. His exhaustion becomes my own. Damn, but this is gonna take some getting used to.

We must have dozed, or at least I did, because when I blink my eyes open next, it's obvious that some time has passed. When I roll over, I discover to my disappointment that I'm alone in the bed.

Looking around the room, I notice that my vision has a strange red tint to it, almost like I'm looking through night vision goggles.

I don't wonder where Dean has gotten to for long before the sound of the microwave closing reaches my ears. "Dean?" I call. Something sharp in my mouth causes me to hiss in pain just as Dean enters the bedroom area.

His face breaks out into a grin when he sees me. "You're awake." He apparently has developed a knack for stating the obvious. "Carter?" One eyebrow climbs his forehead. "How does the room look to you?"

Why does he want to know that? I just shake my head at him, leery of speaking until I figure out why I almost bit off my tongue a second ago. Lifting one hand to my mouth, I pull it back, expecting to see blood and am surprised to find none. I raise confused eyes to Dean's, only to find him choking back a laugh. I narrow my eyes on his face, anger building.

"You have to be the only person to wake after the transformation vamped out."

Vamped out? The term confuses me for a moment before I remember that's what it's called when Dean's fangs are extended. Lifting my hand to my mouth again, I gingerly feel my canines and jerk my hand away quickly when I poke my thumb with a fang. Holding my thumb up in front of me, I watch as blood wells up from the tiny hole in stunned fascination for a second before Dean is there, lifting it to his mouth to suck the drop of blood from my skin.

I just sit there on the bed, open mouthed and speechless. "Think about retracting your fangs, Carter," he instructs. "It takes time to get used to talking with them extended."

I blink a couple of times, trying to wake up enough to think properly. When I finally manage to retract them, I can't help but run my tongue across my teeth, surprised that they feel normal. Dean laughs at my reaction.

"Hate you," I hiss even as I reach for him.

"Hm," he hums, stepping closer. "Your reaction is normal. From what I've heard most Vamps bite their tongue and at least one finger, the first time they vamp out." He hands me the goblet he's holding. "Hungry, yet?"

"Starving." And I am. But it's different from any kind of hunger I've ever felt before.

I lift the goblet to my lips, then turn my head sharply away with a grimace at the horrible smell.

"You have to drink it." Dean tips the bottom of the goblet, forcing me to take a sip.

"God! It's horrible." I thrust the goblet back at him. "It tastes like ass."

"And yet you have to drink it. This is how we survive, Carter." He puts the goblet back in my hand and lifts it to my lips. "Drink all of it."

I glare at him but do as he instructs, gagging on the nasty taste of the blood. "Your blood didn't taste this bad," I gasp once the goblet is empty.

"Actually, that was your blood, just with my Vampire DNA added." He sets the empty goblet down on the bedside table and sits next to me on the bed. "And that-" He points at the goblet. "-was cloned blood."

"Why didn't you give me Human blood?"

"Because there's a blood shortage and the Humans need all the blood currently stored in the blood banks. So unless a Vampire has personal Donors or goes to Vamp bars, they have to make do with cloned blood. All the nutrients and none of the taste."

I chuckle at his description of the cloned blood. "Tell me I don't have to drink that nasty ass stuff often."

"You don't." He stretches out on his side. "Being Bonded has one incredible benefit. Since Bonded Vampires can feed from each other as often as they want, provided they have almost constant access to Humans or cloned blood. We can go longer in between feedings so we don't have to gag down that shit very often."

"That's good." I lean down and kiss him, pushing him over onto his back and straddling his hips. "What's next?"

"According to Tim and Tony, I need to keep you feed and warm."

"Hm. I know how you can keep me warm," I purr, reaching between us and wrapping my hand around his growing erection.

He chuckles. "Damn, but you're horny today. And no, that's not how I was instructed to keep you warm. Besides, sex doesn't raise your temperature anymore, remember? No blood pressure, no core temp."

I pout down at him. "I was hoping to feel you fucking me without holding back."

"We'll get there, promise. But for now-" He shifts me off him so he can roll from the bed. "-we raise your temp with a hot bath and warm blood." Pulling me up, he then herds me into the bathroom where steam is rising from the tub. On the floor next to the tub is a bucket that on closer inspection I see has several bags of blood submerged in the slightly murky water meaning the water is warm.

"How much do I have to drink today?" I let him manhandle me into the tub with him sitting behind me.

"As many bags as it takes to curb your hunger." He begins pouring water from his hand over my shoulder. "I want you to remember how hungry you are right now."

I shift so I can see his face. "So that I don't get this hungry again and risk hurting Humans." It's pure common sense, which is why I make it a statement and not a question.

Everything I've been told by Dean and Nick stresses that Humans are to be protected at all costs because without them we wouldn't have survived this long. They're so fragile and short-lived, and despite their tendency to irrationally hate or fear things, they're still so innocent in that short-sighted way.

"I'm so lucky to have such a smart man as my Mate." He kisses my forehead. "Rest. Tell me when you can't stand the hunger pains any longer."

"If I have to drink that swill, I can wait a long time." He just smiles. "What?" I lean back so I can see his face better.

"The hunger is worse than the cloned blood."

I groan at that and flop back against his chest, burying my face in his neck.

Suddenly a most wonderful sent assaults my nose causing me to sit upright and has my fangs extending and my mouth watering. "You smell that?" I sniff the air and actually begin to stand up.

Dean grabs my hips and forces me to sit back down. "That's just Jaimie."

"What's she doing here?" I ignore Dean's attempts to get me to relax back against him again and continue to sniff the air.

"She has trouble writing her reports when we're all here so she comes by when she knows you're not."

I turn to blink at him. "And you're just gonna let her sit down there with her sweet smelling blood and not do anything about it?" She smells so damn good. I can hardly stand it.

"Have to."

"Why?" My brows lower over my nose. I may not really care if he used to fuck her while feeding before we started fucking but to think he's been with her since… It has me seeing red.

"Relax, Carter. I haven't fed from her since you caught us right after I told you about me. The reason we can't go downstairs and have you feed from her is that for your first Human feeding you need someone who has been fed from more often than she has."

That's reasonable. "But, Dean! I'm hungry!" Surely he understands this.

"That's what these are for." He reaches into the bucket and pulls out a bag of blood and hands it to me.

I turn my nose up at his offering but end up taking it. "Now what?"

"Just bite into it. Your fangs are sharp enough to break the plastic."

Taking a deep breath I don't need, I plunge my fangs into the plastic bag in my hand and suck it dry. "Smelling fresh Human blood while drinking this shit makes it taste better."

"I'll keep that in mind." He takes the drained bag and tosses it in the general direction of the trash can. "Want another?"

I shake my head. I'm still hungry but I'm more tired and a bit anxious to start the Bonding process. "Can we start Bonding now?" I ask around a yawn.

Dean laughs. "I think we should take a nap first."

I think about protesting and then realize I don't really have the energy. "Yeah, probably should."

He pokes and prods me into getting out of the tub where he hands me a towel before letting the water out of the tub and drying himself.

"I can still smell Jaimie. Not sure I'll be able to sleep. It's like trying to sleep while someone is baking a pie."

"So dial back on your sense of smell," he tells me like it's that easy. When I just stare at him, he sighs and rolls his eyes. "Just like with pulling in your fangs, all you have to do is think about it."

Right. I close my eyes and think about not being able to smell anything outside the apartment and slowly Jaimie's smell fades. I open my eyes and look at him morosely. "She smells delicious."

"And she is." He leads me back into the bedroom and over to the bed.

"How are we going to share her?"

He lies down on his back in the middle of the bed and tucks his hands behind his head. "We're not."

"Don't think I'm going to let you keep her to yourself, Dean. It's not fair."

He just raises one eyebrow. "That's not what I meant. Now that she and Jonathan are talking about being Turned so they can Bond, she's been marked as off-limits."

"That doesn't make sense." I climb onto the bed and curl against his right side, one leg and arm thrown over his torso and my head on his shoulder. He's not big on cuddling but he obliges me on a fairly regular basis. For a few moments at a time, at any rate.

"Jon's feeling a bit possessive right now. But then again, so's Jaimie. I haven't been allowed to feed from either of them in the four months since I introduced them."

"And until tonight you haven't fed from me. So where have you been getting your food from?"

"I've been hitting the bars pretty hard and, of course, cloned blood."

My eyes won't stay open but I refuse to let sleep claim me until I ask one more question. "Do you always fuck your Donor?"

"Not since you caught me and Jaimie the day I came out to you and you asked me not to."

His admission has me wide awake, sitting up and staring down at him open mouthed. "Really?" Why does knowing that he respected my request make me giddy?

"Yeah. My father was always faithful to my mother and he taught me that anyone worth making that kind of vow to, is worth me being faithful to."

"So were you faithful to Adair?" I'm fairly sure what his answer will be but I need to know.

"No, I wasn't. But you have to understand. Adair didn't expect faithfulness from me. He wasn't faithful either. None of the single men were. We always bedded whoever caught our fancy. Sure some of the men had their favorites but for the most part we fucked whenever and whoever we wanted until we married. Some didn't stop sleeping around even then."

It was just as I thought but for some reason knowing the truth hurts. All my life I've had memories of being madly in love with this man. Although until recently I didn't know it was him and I thought I was a woman and that those memories were just dreams.

Dean tugs me back down and tucks me along his side, running his thumb up and down my spine in a feather light touch that is just light enough to not tickle.

"Were you faithful to your wife?"

"Of course." He stops caressing my back and begins playing with my hair.

"But you said you didn't really like her."

"Doesn't matter. I stood before God and kin and promised to honor her until my dying day. And I did. With my last breath I renounced her."

And pledged himself to Adair. Dean isn't aware I remember the words he said when he thought Adair had died. "You hated her, didn't you?" Another yawn catches me unawares. There's something soothing about him playing with my hair and I find myself losing the battle with slumber.

"Hard to like someone who makes no secret she prefers other men to you, even though you're her husband."

"I'm sorry your wife was such a bitch." My limbs are getting heavy but I'm not ready to end this conversation.

Dean chuckles. "That was Adair's opinion of her, too." He buries the fingers of his right hand in my hair and pulls my head back enough to brush a kiss to my lips. "Sleep now, Carter. I promise when you wake up we'll start the Bonding. Okay?"

"Yeah, okay." I wiggle a bit to get more comfortable and yawn again before closing my eyes and letting sleep claim me.

Sometime later, I wake amazed that I really don't feel all that different. Rolling over from my back to my left side, I see that Dean is still asleep and sprawled on his stomach with his face turned away from me. I seize this opportunity to engage in one of my favorite activities; looking at Dean's body. Of course, I haven't had many chances to do it lately since he's developed that annoying habit of getting out of bed before I do, but now I plan to make up for lost time, and hopefully provide incentive to get him to sleep in a little more often.

Flicking the sheet back, I allow my gaze to roam his long lean form, starting at his feet. I've never really paid much attention to someone's feet before, but today I notice how broad his are, how high his arches as well as how he has ankles that most women would kill for. From his ankles I move on to his well muscled calves and on to the back of one knee; a spot that until recently I didn't even know could be an erogenous zone. Not that long ago, Dean and I managed to spend several days with nothing better to do than learn each other's bodies. An accidental caress to the back of his knee produced a most unexpected response; it got Dean even more turned on than he was already. On from his knees to powerful thighs and then to one of my favorite parts of his body; his shapely butt. My fingers ache to grasp those gorgeous globes and pull them apart in order to bury my face between them, invading his body with my tongue, pulling cries of ecstasy from deep within him. My eyes follow the crack of his ass up to his back and up the indent of his spine to his broad shoulders and the Scottish Royal Standard tattoo on his left shoulder, then over to biceps that bulge with muscles built over centuries of wielding a heavy sword and learning all forms of hand-to-hand combat and yet I've seen them cradle a crying victim with such care it was almost enough to make me weep.

I pull my gaze back to his shoulders and gaze at his neck. My vision begins to change as the Vampire within slowly comes to the fore. Within several seconds my vision is exactly the same as it was when I woke up earlier after Dean Turned me only this time I can see all the veins and arteries in his body. I follow the line of his neck to the back of his head. Here I give in and lean down to lick a swipe up the back of his head. Not only is my sense of sight and smell changed, but so is my sense of taste and touch. The scrape of the stubble on his head is similar to that of a cat's tongue and the taste of his skin explodes over my tongue. I can't even stop the groan of pleasure that has my eyes closing in ecstasy. He chuckles at my antics and rolls over to present me with my two most favorite parts of his body; his face and his dick which at this moment is fully erect and bobbing gently above his stomach with his movements.

My gaze locks onto what I know to be his carotid artery, knowing instinctively it's where I want to feed from. "Do it, Carter," he urges, tilting his head back. He spreads his legs in invitation. "You have to be fucking me while you feed for the Bond to take effect."

I knee his legs further apart and settle myself between them, burying myself balls deep in one thrust, then with the barest of hesitations, I lean down and seal my mouth over his neck, my fangs breaking his skin with a soft 'pop'. Pulling my fangs back just enough to allow the blood to leave the artery, but not far enough to allow his healing powers to close them, I begin to suck in much the same manner as I do when leaving a hickey. It takes about a second for his blood to begin to flow into my mouth. My eyes roll back in my head and I'm fairly certain I moan in bliss at the wonderful taste that explodes over my taste buds. The taste of his blood is sweet and intoxicating with an underlining metallic bite that tells me he didn't have any of the cloned blood earlier but doesn't tell me why there is no longer a bitter aftertaste.

The Bond flares white hot in the back of my head and I can feel what he feels. It's rather odd, feeling me fucking him from both sides as well as his emotions. From Dean I feel love, lust, want, need, happiness, contentment and joy and underneath that sadness, disgust, regret, guilt and even further down anger. Since I'm sure the anger has nothing to do with me or us, I push it aside and ignore it. I also take the negative feelings and push them away, leaving only the love, lust, want, need, happiness, contentment and joy that more than equal my own.

Eventually something tells me I've had enough so I remove my fangs from his neck and lick the wound closed to help his own healing ability.

He runs his hands roughly down my back to cup my ass cheeks, squeezing and urging me to fuck him faster. Now that I'm not concentrating on feeding from him, I can turn my attention to getting on with the business of fucking my Mate into the mattress.

Fisting my hands in the sheets on either side of his head, I lean down and suck on his tongue while thrusting in and out, slowly building up speed until the sound of my balls smacking his ass echoes through the room. It's beyond amazing being able to kiss him for as long as I want without having to stop to breathe. I can't wait to suck his dick. Over the past four months I've been working on lessening my gag reflex so I can deep-throat him like he does me.

All too soon, I feel that familiar tingle at the base of my spine telling me that I'm getting close to climaxing. I want to slow down, make this last, but I also want to hurry up and finish Bonding and that will only happen once he's fed from me and so I don't fight it, instead letting it wash over me.

I thrust deep one last time and throw my head back and howl my orgasm at the ceiling before collapsing on his chest, not even realizing that I'm breathing hard until Dean chuckles. I don't have the energy to lift my head so I just ask, "What?" between two gasped breaths.

"Your body remembers it's supposed to be panting after that orgasm even though it doesn't have to anymore."

"Hmph," I grunt, tucking my head further under his chin and groaning when my half-hard dick slips from his body.

Dean doesn't let me rest for long; rolling us so he's on top. He shifts so that he's lying between my legs. Tucking his arms under my shoulders, he buries his fingers in my hair and tilts my head so he can sink his fangs into my neck in the exact same instant he enters me.

This time the feel of his fangs breaking my skin is about as painful as the prick of a needle when giving blood. Despite having a mind-blowing orgasm just moments before, my dick takes an active interest, becoming quickly erect.

The Bond flares as bright as the flash of a flash lamp and has my back arching sharply off the bed as I have the most intense climax of my life, something I didn't think was possibly considering I how powerful the one I had just moments before was.

After visiting the stars for the second time in such a short span, I let myself concentrate on the feelings coming from him this time. Instead of being able to feel him fucking me from both sides as well as his emotions, I can only feel his emotions. And this time all I can feel are the positive ones with an emphasis on happy and content.

After several minutes, he pulls his fangs from my neck and licks the wound closed. Shifting his hold from my hair to my face, he stares deep into my eyes and whispers my name, "Carter."

I wrap my legs around his waist and my arms around his shoulders, holding tight and smiling, letting him feel everything I feel for him through the Bond. He returns my smile and lowers his head to rest his forehead against mine, whispering, "I love you" in English for the first time, ever.

I'm so stunned that he actually said it first this time that it takes me a moment to find my voice so I can respond, my tone just as soft as his, "I love you, too."

Despite the fact that Dean can now fuck me the way he has always wanted to, he settles his whole weight on me and begins thrusting almost lazily, basically just shifting his hips every now and then. For the first time since we first began fucking, I feel like we're actually making love, not just having sex.

If Dean was a woman, I'd be saying romantic drivel, maybe nibbling on the closest body part. Since neither of us likes to talk about feelings and such, we don't engage in the romantic drivel but we do nibble on each other's lips, jaw, neck and ear lobes.

I run one hand over his head and down his back while grasping an ass cheek with the other. "Please, Dean," I beg. I've waited for what feels like eternity to feel him really let go while fucking me.

He braces himself on his fists and slowly begins to increase his pace. I plant my feet and lift my hips to meet each thrust. Running my hands up his back, I marvel in the feeling of his muscles moving under his skin. Wrapping my hands around his triceps, I give myself over to having my brains fucked out by my Mate. He's slamming against me harder than he's ever done, so hard that I can hear my own teeth clacking and it's all I can do to hang on and howl. "Come for me, Carter," he growls, slipping his arms under my legs and rising up onto his knees. Always one to obey a sexual order, especially one from my Mate, I double fist my dick and soon my chest is covered in my come and the contractions of my ass are milking every last drop from Dean as well.

He collapses on top of me for just a second before rolling off to lie on his back and stare up at the ceiling. From somewhere, I find the strength to roll to my left and drape one leg over his. "Is it always like this?"

He rolls his head to face me. "Is what always like this? Fucking another Vamp or fucking one's Mate?"

I shrug. "Both?"

He chuckles and wraps one hand around my thigh to place it directly over his groin. "Well, I've never fucked my Mate before today but I can tell you that fucking another Vamp isn't like this very often. I think I can safely say that this was all because we're Mates. I have a feeling each time will be like this."

A yawn catches me unawares. "Is it normal for me to be so tired?"

He shrugs. "Can't say. I was almost dead when I was Turned so any fatigue I felt I attributed to that."

"Hm," I hum, scooting closer so I can rest my head on his shoulder. "Should we nap again or find something to eat?"

"Judging from how you just slurred your words there, I'm gonna say nap first." He presses a kiss to my forehead and turns so that I'm spooned up behind him.

I snake my arm under his and linking our fingers together, get as close as I can so I can place a nipping little kiss to the knot of bone at the top of his spine before allowing sleep to claim me.

Or read it at my website.


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