CHAPTER 7 –

 

Xavier hadn’t thought he’d be able to sleep again, but he was wrong. He’d slipped down easily into sleep with Rayne wrapped lightly around him and hadn’t woken again until the sun was well up. When he did open his eyes it was close on thirty six hours since he’d been chased into that alley and beaten. Given a day and a half for the real aches to set in he’d expected to feel even worse. The deep bruising was still very painful and he wasn’t going to jump out of bed and start dancing any time soon but he wasn’t nearly as badly off as he had feared. He was very sore, but moving considerably better than he had been the day before.

The very next thing he noticed was how hungry he was. He either hadn’t had the opportunity or the inclination to eat since breakfast two days ago with Clint and now he was just about ready to devour the pillow under his head.

He woke alone but the sound of conversation was a low buzz in the background. Rayne was talking to someone in the living room. Once his eyes had adjusted to the brightness he struggled into a shirt and pants and managed to limp through to the other room to find out what was going on.To his relief their visitor was Lord Warren, not Matt Greening. In spite of Matty’s kindness in looking out for him after he was attacked, Xavier was still uncomfortable with Rayne’s ex boyfriend hanging around the apartment.

Dominic was sitting on the edge of the futon talking to Rayne who stood by the window looking out. They both turned when he came into the room though. Rayne looked concerned but Dom’s expression was one of mingled shock and horror.

“Bright Lady!” he exclaimed, springing to his feet and coming to Xavier at once. “You should still be in the bedroom, young man. You’re black and blue, you poor thing!”

Xavier brought his arms up in an unconscious warding gesture, afraid Dominic was actually going to hug him, which would have been fine under ordinary circumstances but would be very bad for him right now. He relaxed though when Dominic stopped short of actually pulling him into his worried embrace.

“I would be, but there isn’t any food in there,” Xavier pointed out with with a small rueful smile that looked particularly pathetic given his current battered state.

“There isn’t any food out here either,” Rayne said, not entirely helpfully.

Dominic looked from one to the other like they were naughty children and shook his head. “Goddess! What am I to do with the pair of you? Ray, the boy needs nourishment if he’s to get better. Haven’t you even made him soup?”

“He was asleep,” the little vampire sulked, clearly put out at being cast as the villain.

“Well he isn’t sleeping now,” Lord Warren declared sternly. He turned to Xavier with a proprietary smile; “What would you like for breakfast, darling?”

“Anything sounds good right now. I’m starved,” Xavier said. “There really isn’t anything to eat here though… Rayne just got back,” he added by way of a slight defence for his mate. “… and I’ve just been eating out ’cause, you know, I can pretty much fuck up anything that needs to be cooked. There’s a place not too far from here I’ve been goin’ to for breakfast,” he explained casually.

Dominic looked at him like he’d suggested something utterly ridiculous. “Tell me you weren’t planning on hobbling down there this morning.”

Xav shrugged, and then winced slightly, stopping mid motion. Dominic made a tsk-ing sound and motioned him to sit.

“Why didn’t you call me?”

Xav looked up at him at little abashed, because he should have but he hadn’t been thinking clearly. “It was like, 3 in the morning when I finally made it to the apartment… I knew Matty had a key and I wasn’t sure if you did so I ‘phoned him. I’ve been either at the hospital or sleeping and haven’t had a chance to call you…or eat anything, since.”

“Oh you poor darling,” Dominic sighed again, shaking his head. “It’s a wonder you haven’t faded away to nothing.”

He stroked Xavier’s hair tenderly then reached into a pocket of his short coat for a small pad and an expensive looking pen. He scribbled a list and passed it to Rayne almost dismissively.

“There’s a herbalist on Ladbroke Grove, near the library and a delicatessen called Snickett’s about halfway down Portobello Road, they should be able to sell you most of that,” he said sternly. “Shouldn’t take you more than a half hour to get there and back. I’m going to run this poor lad a nice hot chamomile bath and let him soak those bruises properly. Honestly! You’re supposed to be taking care of him, Rayne.”

The little vampire studied the list rather sullenly but he did not argue and when Dominic gave him another of those ‘looks’ he reached for his coat and bent to give Xavier a gentle kiss.

“She’s worse than my Nan,” he breathed, touching his lips to his lover’s mouth again.

Xavier returned the kiss with a hint of desperation. He’d much rather have been the one going out than the one left behind to be fussed over. Rayne’s lips were twitching with a bit more humour as he pulled away and Xavier shot him a look that said thanks for that! before the vampire hurried out the door, leaving him in Lord Warren’s tender care.

Quickly Xavier realised the pointlessness of resisting and he hadn’t the energy to put up much of a protest anyway. He gave in and let Dominic minister to needs he didn’t even know he had.

The huge green-glass soak tub in Rayne’s bathroom was already filled with steaming water and various flowers and what looked like bark and twigs when he ambled in there. At least it smelled good. He stripped off his clothes while his friend was humming over the water adding a drop of this or a dash of that. Dom’s little gasp made Xav turn around and then he looked away from the horrified and worried look on his friend’s face. He supposed he did look pretty bad under the tee shirt, the dark purple of the bruises in full bloom over his torso probably wouldn’t even begin to fade for a few days yet.

Xav didn’t say a word while the older man alternately oozed sympathy and cursed the men that did this to him. He got into the tub at Dominic’s direction, hissing and wincing as he tried to ease down into the hot water.

“For fuck’s sake Dom, are you trying to boil me or what?” he whined a bit.

“Don’t be such a baby,” the older man chuckled, shaking his head. “The hot water will draw the bruising, darling. The comfrey tincture that I added to it will help to reduce the swelling, chamomile is always soothing, thyme and rosemary are good for your skin in any case. Don’t scrub, just soak for a little while. I’ll make some rosehip tea when Ray gets back, that should boost your immune system, help you get well from within.”

He beamed at Xavier like a beneficent angel then left the young man to simmer for a while in the deep, green-glass bowl of aromatic stew. The rippling water reflecting on the cool green and white tiles was oddly soothing and it was quiet and peaceful in the bathroom once he was on his own.

In fairly short order Xavier got used to the temperature and relaxed bit by bit, his head resting on the back lip of the tub, the water reaching almost up to his neck. The hot scented water was soothing and felt silky on his skin. As he let his mind start to drift, not actually falling asleep but just floating a bit below total consciousness, he thought he felt a little shimmer of something flow over him. Nothing unpleasant, it was almost like a caress under the heat of the water. He guessed the low tingle along his skin to be the feel of Dominic’s magic.

He stayed where he was, just drifting and feeling that tingle spread slowly through him until the water began to cool and he judged himself sufficiently prune-like. At last he got out, feeling as though he’d just steeped himself in a giant bowl of herbal tea… which essentially was true. He was not miraculously cured of all his aches and bruises, but the raw ache of his damaged muscles was less as he patted himself dry and wrapped himself in one of Rayne’s robes. He didn’t feel like crawling back into bed yet, despite knowing Dominic would probably chastise him for wandering around rather than resting. After the hot bath he felt pretty much rested anyway.

His stomach gurgled contentedly in advance appreciation of the hot bacon rolls his rebellious lover had fetched back with the shopping, knowing that he would not want to wait whilst food was cooking. In view of the fact that he knew the smell of bacon left Rayne nauseated, it was a touching gesture.

He could hear voices coming from the kitchen again and guessed Dominic was in there with Rayne. He wasn’t trying to eavesdrop but as he approached he couldn’t help overhearing what they were talking about. Dominic was asking questions and Rayne was sketching out the details of what had happened as far as he knew; received in a third hand account. They were discussing the possibility or probability of Clint’s involvement in the attack. Xav didn’t get upset, but he did look quite serious as he floated into the kitchen and helped himself to a bacon bap whilst Dom was busy cooking up a pot of something that smelled equally heavenly on the stovetop.

“Clint didn’t set me up,” Xavier injected into the conversation with his mouth full, although he wasn’t trying to be rude about it. “I know he didn’t.”

Dominic glanced up anxiously from the pot he was stirring and Rayne, who was leaning on the counter beside him shook his head gravely.

“I don’t want you to mix with him any more,” he said. It wasn’t a direct order but it had that tone to it that added, if he was defied, he would not be happy about it. “Maybe he didn’t mean for this to happen to you, but he hangs around with the kind of people that…”

Rayne broke off because Dominic gave him a look that Xavier didn’t see. He could guess from Rayne’s defensive reaction that Lord Warren didn’t always approve of Rayne’s choice of companions either.

“Xavier’s a grown up, Ray,” was all Lord Warren murmured. “And Clint is nearly an adult too, you can’t police them all your life. What happened was unfortunate, but this is London. You can’t wrap the boy in cotton wool, darling.”

Xav put down the roll, feeling the delicious food turn to ashes in his mouth and slid onto one of the barstools by the kitchen island. He was bristling ever so slightly at Rayne’s high handed tone, but he was not altogether surprised by it.

“Are you more angry that I let him hang out here, or that I found out he’s your kid?” he asked mildly. He didn’t really want to get Rayne wound up but there were some things that needed saying between them, and he’d be damned if he was gonna take all this sniping about Clint and not say a word in his own defence.

Now Rayne’s hackles were up too and Xav could tell Dominic was thinking he might be in the middle of yet another row. Xav held Rayne’s hostile gaze though, treated him to a tired, slightly lopsided smile and waved a dismissive hand. “I’m not trying to give you shit about it Ray, I just want you to be fair, that’s all. If you don’t want to let me in on things like, ‘oh, by the way, the little emo brat on my front step is my kid…’, then don’t get pissed off at me cos I stumbled into it.”

Rayne opened his mouth and Xav hurried on. “By the way, he’s not a bad kid… and I’m pretty sure he knows you’re a vampire. I did the best I could to keep him from tripping out until you got back and decided what you wanted to do about it.”

Rayne’s teeth clicked together softly as he closed his mouth on whatever it was he had been about to say. Dominic moved the pan he had been stirring off the heat and turned to look from Xavier to the little vampire with a chuckle.

“He’s a smart one, say what you like!” he remarked with some amusement and Xav wondered if Dominic was talking about him or Clinton.

Rayne shook his head incredulously. “He told you I was a vampire? The little fuck!”

Xavier put his chin carefully on the palm of one hand, resting his elbow on the counter.

“No…not exactly. He tried to get me to tell him you were a vampire though. He was asking some pretty pointed questions. I didn’t confirm or deny anything, exactly, but he’s not stupid Ray. He’s…he’s feeling something. He told me he was drawn here, to you. I think he can feel the difference around vampires like I can…” He trailed off for a second and then looked back up at Rayne. “I had to tell him something, at least. I didn’t want him trying to dig up info on his own, I was worried he’d get into more trouble than he could handle. So, I told him if he got that feeling around anyone else to stay away from them.”

Dominic sucked a short breath through his teeth and Rayne looked irritably at him.

“It’s happening,” the older man said with a small shrug. “You knew there was no way of stopping it. He is coming into his inheritance, Rayne. The child of a union between a vampire and a mortal woman will grow to become Dhamphirii. Better that he does so as your ally than your opponent, darling.”

“I think Clint’s drawn his own battle lines,” Rayne said darkly. “If he comes near Xav again, I will wipe the fuckin’ floor with him. But if he thinks he scares me, he’s got a nasty shock coming.”

The vampire looked unsettled though. It was clear enough from his mood that he felt he was being forced to take a stance he’d rather not have adopted. Xavier had touched on a sore spot, Clint was his son, for good or ill and his track record as a father was already a less than shining example.

“Rayne…” Xavier waited until his lover looked at him. There was both concern and confusion in his sky blue eyes, his face expressive despite the discolouration of bruises. “He’s not such a bad kid, really. I’ll stay away from him if you want but if he comes around I’m not going to treat him like shit. He didn’t do anything wrong.”

“You don’t know him half as well as you think you do, Xavier,” Rayne warned.

“Matt told me about what he did. About him accusing you of stuff and then trying to burn the place down. I’m not saying there’s any excuse for that, I’m not saying he’s not messed up, but I think it’s all coming from just wanting attention.”

Rayne gave him an incredulous look. “Yeah? This last time I caught up with him he stabbed me in the arm.”

Xavier finally looked shocked. “You’re kidding…”

The vampire looked seriously at him. “I don’t have the scars to prove it, fortunately, but my jacket’s still hanging in the hall, there’s a nice little tear in the sleeve now that’ll be a bitch to mend. Thing is, I don’t actually think he was going for my arm, if you know what I mean.”

Dominic also looked shocked by this and visibly upset.

“That’s beyond attention seeking, you should call the police, my darling,” he said. “What if he hurts someone else? Someone who’ll bleed more?”

Xavier didn’t thank Lord Warren for pointing that out to Rayne, especially since he was being so protective as it was. He was still quite shocked that Clint would actually stab Rayne and he felt disappointment settle on him keenly. Could he have been that wrong about the kid? Were his instincts that far off? He sat there quietly staring a hole through the worktop in front of him and wondering if he had actually misjudged Clint. Maybe the boy had set him up, after all. It wasn’t impossible. Actually, it would have been very easy.

But then, why had he asked him to stay at the theatre? Why had he come along and helped him? Why stay with him and drag his ass all the way home? But on the other hand, wasn’t it just a little convenient the way Clint had found him in that alley? What if the kid had taken his phone on purpose to give himself a reason to come after him in order to cover his own tracks? Maybe he was playing some game, trying to make himself look good, get close to Xavier to hurt Rayne?

If Clint really did have something to do with the mugging, Xav thought… well, disappointment didn’t begin to cover how that made him feel. He should be pissed, and somewhere inside he was, but he was also wounded. He’d gotten to kind of like Clint. He’d been good to the kid for more reasons than just because he was Rayne’s son. Now he felt he’d been stupidly naïve and he couldn’t meet Rayne’s eyes.

Maybe Rayne saw a little of the confusion in his face because he moved closer, so smoothly and silently that Xav was hardly aware of him until he felt his lover’s hand on the back of his neck. It was a gesture designed to be both soothing and a little possessive.

“We don’t need to get the police involved,” the vampire said atonally. “I’ll deal with Clinton. Right now our priority is Xavier. He needs to get well, and then we need to figure out how to build his defences up so that something like this can’t happen to him again.” Rayne kissed his lover’s blond curls, tenderly whispering; “Don’t worry. None of this is your fault, sweetheart.”

Xavier leaned into Rayne, letting himself be comforted, but still feeling rather disconsolate.

“I’ve been thinking about that very thing actually.” Dominic said while he poked around in the pans on the hob. “I’ve just about taken care of all the most pressing business here and I’m overdue a trip back home.” He turned around, smiling at them both. “Why don’t you both come with me? Get out of the city for a while and Xavier can recuperate in peace.”

Rayne exchanged a look with Xavier and murmured; “You’re inviting us to hang out at Flowery Twats? We must look a mess!”

Xavier looked quizzically at him, but Rayne was grinning now so he figured it was some sort of a long standing joke between them.

“It’s not the first time I’ve let you stay there, darling,” Dominic did not look up from his pans but a smile quirked his lips too. “And yes, I think you are both in a bit of a state. Maybe the chance to get over your respective traumas somewhere neutral will help you both to recover. And I can work on building your protection with you from day to day. It will speed the whole process up.”

“In that case,” Rayne said sarcastically, “you’re on!”

Dominic finished making dinner and then made sure that Xav ate everything on his plate, and had second helpings. He had some political business to attend to at the House before he travelled up to Cheshire and so he bade them farewell, letting them know he’d be driving north on the following day and would meet them at the airport, since it would be quicker and more comfortable for Rayne and Xav to fly up when they were ready.

After Dominic had gone Rayne helped Xavier to pack, and opened the case he had brought back from Manchester to empty it and throw in some fresh clothing. The handful of garments that came out of the case were shoved hastily into the laundry basket but not before they caught Xav’s sharp eyes. He said nothing at the time but whilst Rayne was on the phone to Matty later, he slipped into the bathroom and investigated in more detail.

It felt a little bit wrong to be doing this but he was curious about what he’d thought he’d seen, and also the weirdly surreptitious way Rayne had tried to smuggle the clothing into the basket and out of sight.

 

Shoved down under the dark jeans and crumpled shirt Rayne had travelled up in, was a pair of sheer black stockings and a black silk, bias-cut dress that draped over his hands like something living. Xavier’s heart almost stopped as he retrieved them, then found lying beneath the dress a small, black and green lace basque top and thong.

He blinked, not sure what he was looking at. What did it mean? Did Rayne have a girlfriend on the side? Were these her things? And why bring them back with him? It made no sense.

Xavier was just about to slip the dress back into the hamper, which he almost didn’t want to do just because it seemed like a crime to crumple the delicate fabric like that, when he heard Rayne’s chill voice behind him.

“What are you doing?”

Xavier jumped, then winced and turned to see his lover standing in the doorway, his expression just about as flinty as his voice had been. Well, there was no use lying when you were caught bang to rights, was there?

“Um…snooping?” Xavier answered with a sheepish look and a little shrug. “Sorry…” He looked down helplessly, embarrassed at being caught. “You have a girlfriend?” he asked softly, fingering the silky fabric of the dress lightly.

Rayne opened his mouth and closed it again, taking a quick breath and a moment to collect his thoughts. He had no idea how Xavier would react to the truth, but was it better or worse than the idea of him seeing another woman? That was impossible to call. Xav knew he fucked other men and didn’t have a problem with it. Why not women?

It was, however, enough of a hesitation to make Xavier question any answer he might come up with. Rayne was caught between the proverbial rock and a very hard place.

“You got me,” he sighed, holding up his hands in surrender. “I guess I can’t hide anything from you, huh?”

Xavier gave him an impossible to read look, and then he let the soft material slip from his fingers back into the hamper. He tilted his head slightly, eyes narrowing on his lover. “Does she know about me?”

“You didn’t come up,” Rayne responded a bit too quickly, then bit his lip as if conscious of how that sounded.

“Uh-huh. Figures,” Xavier said, his voice still deceptively soft.

“I don’t see what you’re getting upset about.” His mate was a little bit defensive now.

Xavier chuckled humourlessly. “Oh, I don’t know. Maybe because you lied about what you were going to Manchester for, or at least lied about why you wanted to go alone. Maybe because I’ve been someone’s dirty little secret before and I didn’t much like it then either.”

Rayne’s pale eyes moved to the hamper briefly and he licked his lips, clearly nervous with the situation but he leaned in the doorway and forced a shake of his head.

“I didn’t lie about why I had to go to Manchester,” he said in a firmer tone. “That was the truth. I didn’t go up there deliberately to see someone else. And I’ve had other guys whilst we’ve been together, you didn’t give me the whole Inquisition about Matt, or Aldo. I don’t see why this is such a problem, Xavier.”

Xavier set him with a hard stare. “Come on, Rayne. Fucking is just fucking. You never rubbed my nose in it, which I appreciate, but you never tried to hide when you were fucking someone else either. This…” He pointed an angry finger down at the clothes basket. “…you were trying to hide. Which makes me wonder why. I don’t care if you want the occasional piece of pussy, but if you’re hiding it maybe she’s more than just a casual fuck, huh?”

“I’m not hiding anything, Xav!” Rayne protested, pushing away from the doorway and coming to him at once, his hands held out in supplication. “I swear to you, it was a mistake. I was in a rush to get back here to you, I must have picked up her stuff and shoved it in the bag with mine. That’s all. I’ll get it cleaned and send it back.”

He bit down on that too late. It opened too many extra cans of worms. Unlife made you stronger in many respects but if you couldn’t lie for shit to start off with, it wasn’t going to make you any better at it.

“So, she’s not just a random hook up? You know where she lives?” Xavier said atonally. He was trying not to lose his temper but he was getting angrier by the moment thinking of the way he’d so complacently let Rayne go to Manchester alone, because he’d said he needed the space, and how badly he’d just wanted to comfort him. Seemed Rayne had found all the comfort he needed in some woman’s arms.

“Well… yeah.” Rayne dropped his hands to his sides and turned away, wondering how he could possibly have made this worse. He could not look Xavier in the eye and lie to him like this. But he had no idea how to tell him the truth without feeling utterly ridiculous.

The evasive gesture and reluctance emanating from Rayne only made Xavier more suspicious. After having just found out Rayne had a teenage son he hadn’t bothered to tell him about he couldn’t help but wonder if perhaps there was a secret wife he was hiding too. Xav reached out and cupped Rayne’s chin gently in his hand, turning his face toward him and leaning close enough to almost kiss him. “You’re lying, babe…I don’t know why, or exactly what about, but you’re lying about something. I’m not stupid.”

He let him go and let his hand drop heavily then moved around him, floating by in that graceful way he had, even though his ribs were aching again badly now and it was hard to breath around the lump in his throat. His brain was working a million miles a minute putting all sorts of painful scenarios in front him. Maybe this was the real reason Rayne had left him in Italy. Maybe he had forgotten about her when he lost his memory and that was the only reason he’d invited Xav to come home with him. Maybe this was why Rayne couldn’t say he loved him, because he loved someone else.

That last thought was like a hot knife twisting in his heart. Could he do this again? Could he be the third, lesser part of a triad? Could he hold his heart out in his hand and accept a pat on the head in return?

Rayne turned to watch him as he slipped by like a sleek little boat putting out to sea. His heart sank and he closed his eyes for a moment, resting his hands against the cool, smooth glass of the tub, wishing it was ripped and jagged so that he could draw his wrists along the edges and watch the blood well up and slide down those cold, green flanks. ‘Idiot! Idiot! Fucking.Stupid. Fucking Idiot!’ He forced his head back up, made himself say something before Xavier walked out of the door.

“You know… you do know, don’t you? That you’re the most important person in my life right now?” he said, feeling his pulse quicken almost painfully at that admission. It felt… needy, too raw, too exposed. And, on the heels of such a monumental lie, so blatantly false! Even though it was the truest thing he’d said in years.

Xavier had reached the doorway and he paused there as Rayne spoke. He was still angry, and if he was honest he was also very hurt. Was he hurt enough to walk out on Rayne though? Over a suspicion? His mind was preying on some of his worst fears, and even though Xav knew Rayne was lying about something to do with that dress, he didn’t know if any of those suspicions were true.

Of all the things Rayne could have said at that moment, for once he got very lucky. He didn’t know it but he couldn’t have chosen words that would have made more of an impact on Xavier. That was really all he’d ever wanted, to be important to Rayne. He didn’t need to have Rayne’s exclusive attention, he didn’t need flowery declarations, but knowing that at the end of the day (or fling!) that his lover wanted to be with him more than anyone else was the one thing that meant a great deal to him.

Xav looked back over his shoulder now hesitantly. “I am?” he asked in such a small quietly surprised voice it was almost childlike.

Rayne half turned almost mirroring his gesture, feeling a mixture of relief and surprise at that question and the tone of it. He truly did not deserve this boy but he wanted to be able to hold Xavier in his arms so badly right now.

“Yeah,” he said quietly, no embroidery this time. Nothing that would mess things up. “Yeah, you are. And I’m a fuckwit, and I don’t know why you’re still here, but… I’m glad. Okay?”

Xavier turned fully around and came back to him slowly. He slid his arms around Rayne’s waist and pressed his lips to his in a sweet kiss that grew in length and heat, his hands creeping up Rayne’s back until they were pressed between his shoulder blades, holding tight, and their tongues were passionately entwined. When they finally broke the lip lock Xav was a little breathless and his eyes were dark with desire.

“Don’t lie to me again, sweetheart. You suck at it,” he advised and kissed him again.

Rayne’s tongue slid seductively across Xavier’s lower lip, trailing into the corner of his lover’s mouth as he broke the kiss.

“I’ll suck at anything you want me to right now,” he promised huskily.

Xavier’s smile was full of promise as well as he pulled Rayne by the hand through into the bedroom. Clothes were quickly shed and they settled down onto the bed together, although once Xavier was naked it was a reminder he was still injured and they had to take it easy.

His dick didn’t seem to be in anyway considerate of the rest of his body, he was already hard and hot for his lover.

Rayne moved over him tenderly, clearly appreciative of just how much energy Dominic’s pampering had given his young lover. He was relieved on many levels that the argument had not spilled over into a full scale confessional though. Xavier was not well enough for a fight, for a start, but in truth Rayne did not want to fight with him. He had genuinely forgotten about the black dress in his luggage until he came to unpack. And that brought back the deep and abiding sadness of the last forty eight hours he spent in Manchester.

He was glad that Dave had turned up at the apartment, even though he had been ungrateful at the time. It had been a comfort to know that he was not alone, and also that his former lover’s partner had been thinking of him. Dave and his boyfriend Bernard had been good to Rayne in the past and it was a consolation to know that they were still looking out for him.

Xavier knew and understood, without being told, that sometimes Ray needed to be sexually submissive. It had taken Rayne far longer to come to terms with that himself than it took Xavier to comprehend it. But he was not sure how the younger man would react to the kind of relationship he had explored with Kevan. With Kev he had delved deeper into his psyche than at any time since his early twenties. There was too much of that year in Manchester that he was not ready to talk about yet.

Easier to lose himself in his lover’s arms and enjoy the moment. Even if that had been how he hid himself from the truth for so long.

Rayne took his time, kissing Xavier all over, letting his lips stroke tenderly over the bright blooms on his mate’s normally glowing, golden skin and delving more passionately into the unbruised regions. His fingers curled around Xavier’s straining shaft and worked him almost delicately. He knew from painful experience how bad a serious kick in the groin could feel, even a few days after the event. But Xav was hard and more than just willing.

Crazy kid! Rayne thought with a smile.

Xavier rolled his hips lightly into Rayne’s touch, enjoying the feel of his cool fingers wrapped around his shaft slipping smoothly up and down his skin. His own hands wandered restlessly over Rayne’s body and down to his sex, slipping around him in tandem with his strokes. He kissed into the crook of Rayne’s throat and sucked there gently.

Rayne knelt over him, careful not to put too much weight onto Xavier’s battered body but letting the blond lip and stroke him because it felt impossibly good. He rested his upper body weight on his right hand and worked Xavier’s hard on deftly with the left whilst kneeling astride his mate’s thighs.

“Jesus, I wanna fuck you!” he exhaled, his voice heavy with longing.

“I want you to fuck me too,” Xavier whispered back. He was trying to figure out how would be the most comfortable way. Since lifting his legs up around Rayne’s waist was going make him work his abdominals too much he decided turning over would be best and he rolled carefully between Rayne’s thighs, at least the smooth curves of his peachy cheeks were unbruised.

“Ahhh, my fuckin’ angel,” Rayne breathed, ever so lightly moving his nude body against Xavier’s back so that he could kneel astride his lover’s slender hips, stroking his needy cock between those sleek, ripe peaches.

He levered himself down slowly on his elbows and kissed Xavier’s shoulders and the back of his neck hungrily. The boy’s slim back was mottled with angry bruises too. The bastards must have rolled him to the ground then taken turns kicking him from all angles and Rayne seethed at the thought of it. Tonight when Xavier was sleeping, he decided, he was going to go and pay his illegitimate son a little visit. If Clint wouldn’t tell him voluntarily who had done this, he was going to extract the information forcibly. A beating like this could not be allowed to go unpunished.

Rayne was trying to shield the anger he was feeling from Xavier though, and kept his kisses light and tender all the way down the younger man’s spine until he could skate the tip of his tongue seductively around the tight little button of Xavier’s gorgeous arse.

Xavier pulled in a shuddering breath as he felt Rayne’s tongue lap at his sensitive ring. He never realized how difficult it was to keep still in the midst of a passionate romp. Even when he was restrained he moved within the bonds. As long as he kept his movement slow and not too exaggerated though he wasn’t in too much pain, not enough to want to stop anyway. He squirmed slightly, pushing his hard cock into the mattress under him as Rayne kissed and licked him, making him moan with pleasure.

“Mmmmhhh, you taste so good, sweetheart,” Rayne purred, blowing softly on the wetness of his lover’s twitching ring and watching it jump and pulse eagerly, a little smile pulling at his lips. “Need to make you a little bit wetter though if I’m not gonna hurt you too much.”

He knelt up and pulled a couple of pillows over, easing Xavier back on his knees just enough to layer the lovely, soft, plump pillows beneath his crotch and the work of modern art that was currently his belly. Letting Xav settle back down on them with a soft moan of pleasure, Rayne leaned over to the side of the bed and retrieved a little jar of aromatic lubricant from the drawer of his bedside cabinet.

Dipping two fingers into the scented salve, he got them good and slippery before rubbing the gel slowly over Xavier’s cute little pucker. Pressing his middle finger down firmly, he held his hand in place until it sank inside him easily.

“Mmm-uh…” Xav purred under the deft stroke of his lover’s fingers inside him. The slippery lube was cool against his skin at first but just about the time he detected the faint scent of mint his skin began to heat. The warmth spread everywhere Rayne touched, setting his sensitive nerve endings alight. “Uhhh…oh fuck…” he whimpered, circling his hips to push back on those invading digits as Rayne stretched and lubed him. “Uh, that’s…that’s…uhhh…” Xav groaned wordlessly. He wasn’t thinking about his bruises at all any more.

“That’s the way,” Rayne crooned huskily, driving slow gentle fingers into him over and over as he stroked the seductively scented lubricant up and down his shaft with his free hand, loving the tingle that it sowed beneath the fine, silken skin of his erect phallus.

Keeping up the slow pulsing rhythm, he deftly eased his cock head against Xavier’s flexing entrance and exchanged fingers for dick so smoothly that his softly moaning lover barely flinched. It felt so good to sink the urgently pulsing head into him though.

Xavier sighed silkily and lifted his hips higher, arching into Rayne’s slow thrust. He spread his thighs a little more, widening Rayne’s as well since he was riding astride him still. His fingers curled into the sheets as he rocked slightly, his tight sheath gripping the thick member sliding slowly into him. “God, that feels so good…” he murmured enthusiastically.

A low, lusty groan escaped Rayne’s throat as he prowled forward, bracing his hands in the bedclothes to either side of Xavier’s shoulders and rocking himself back and forth above his eager lover. Each movement of his body propelled him a little deeper into Xavier and he caught his breath as he felt the hot, wet sheath of his mate’s body grip him and pull him fiercely in.

The urge to just sink down on Xav, holding him and bucking against him the way they normally coupled, was frustrating and at the same time exciting. They were both holding back but it still felt amazing just being inside Xavier after days of abstinence.

The soft hollow of Rayne’s pelvis fitted perfectly against the curve of Xavier’s backside, pushing into the firm mounds of his ass as they moved together. They often started out slow and built in speed and intensity but this time, out of necessity, they kept to the slower more careful pace. It didn’t matter to Xavier, the slow and steady thrust of Rayne’s cock inside him and the feel of the vampire’s cool thighs caressing his were sensually erotic. Any way was good when Rayne was involved.

Slipping a hand beneath him he caressed along his own rock hard shaft, moving in slow undulations that impaled him on Rayne’s dick on the backstroke and into pushed him into that curled fist as he thrust forward again. He kept his grip light though, and his strokes easy, and that had nothing at all to do with having gotten kicked in the balls. Rayne often made him wait for it, especially when he was hungry and wanted to swallow his cum. Xav never felt deprived though, quite the opposite, it was a major turn on to get to the edge and have to hold back.

“Mmmhhh…” Rayne exhaled along the line of his nape as he rocked himself slowly in and out, balanced on his knees and the heels of his hands. “You feel fantastic, sweetheart. So smooth and so fuckin’ hot! That is just… a-fuckin’-mazing!”

It was too. Xavier’s body was snug against his own, his firm buttocks rubbing and swaying a little more urgently in the smooth hollows of his sensitive groin, their lean thighs creating a seductive frottage as he eased back and forth above the sexy blond. Every little grip and twitch of Xavier’s hot, slippery channel shivered up the shaft of his cock like sonar to his balls, bringing him steadily closer and closer. He could feel his head throbbing with need deep inside the boy, releasing a slow stream of precum that only served to make Xavier feel wetter and sexier.

“Uhhhh… Jesus fuckin’ Christ! I love this!” the vampire growled eagerly.

Xavier’s breathing had deepened, a light sheen of moisture on his skin. He purred his agreement with Rayne. “Yeah…oh, fuck yeah…so fuckin good…” His own cock was hot and slippery in his hand as they surged together and he was getting there now, the low tightening buzz building in him with each stroke of Rayne’s long, fleshy bone deep inside.

A soft urgent keen rose from his throat, but this time Rayne didn’t whisper for him to try and hold it, instead he nuzzled into the crook of his throat and lipped at the marks on his neck, humming there encouragingly. That was all the push Xav needed and his body flexed and shivered under Rayne once, and then once more before his breath hitched in his throat and the coil inside sprung free to release an ecstatic orgasm.

“Uuuuhhh!! Uuhhh! Ohmifuckingod!” he moaned as he spilled into the soft pillows cradling him below.

 

“Ohyeah! Ohyeahyeahyeah!” Rayne sighed against his neck, letting the quickening pulse and clench around his eager sex milk him hard. It took every ounce of will that he had not to sink down on top of Xavier as the climax built and built and finally burst out of him.

Biting down on the two little marks, he used the taste of Xavier’s hot blood to focus him as he shuddered above the younger man, enjoying the pleasure of his lover’s orgasm from within and without. He was sharing Xavier’s pleasure through the blood even as he filled the beautiful young man with his own love and lust, coming down onto his elbows and knees, bracing himself over Xavier’s cruelly battered body.

He did not feed. As soon as he could control his own breathing he lapped tenderly at the bites, healing them as he rocked himself slowly out of Xav’s delicious passage.

Panting and nearly dizzy with pleasure Xav still whimpered longingly as Rayne withdrew both his teeth and his cock. He felt both incredibly contented and at the same time wished Rayne wouldn’t have stopped so soon. It had been far too long since Rayne had feed deeply from him, and although Xavier understood why, he longed for that sinking drowning intimate connection. He also knew that if he hadn’t been in such bad shape Rayne probably would have fed from him longer. Ah well, patience never had been his strong point.

He rolled to his back carefully as Rayne shifted off him, a drowsy contented smile on his face. He just lay there peacefully, not feeling like moving. It wasn’t long though before the aches of his exertions settled into a dull throbbing in every muscle. With less reluctance this time he took one of the painkillers and let Rayne tuck the duvet around him, curling up blissfully with his lover until sleep tugged him down.

Rayne lay snuggled against him for a long time afterwards. He felt such a heavy sense of contentment lying here with his arms around Xavier, listening to him breathing and inhaling the sweet, hot, sensual aroma of his naked body.

I wish I could tell you, he thought dejectedly. I wish to god I could tell you the truth, but I don’t always get it myself. You’ve been so good to me, Xavier. And good FOR me as well. And I know you’ve been through some shit and you’ve seen just about everything… I wish I could tell you and know that you wouldn’t laugh at me. Everything would be okay then. I could let it all go.

He cuddled up close until he was sure that Xavier was sound asleep, then tenderly kissed the mussed golden nest of his hair and tucked him in a little tighter.

Rayne showered and dressed, pulling on neutral, tight, dark jeans and a fitted top then sliding a lightweight hooded cardigan over it and a mid-length jacket. There were pockets in the jacket for money and his phone and a knife, even though he did not need weapons. Sometimes the currency of a blade was more valid than the baring of teeth.

He bent over Xav and kissed the boy’s hair again, smiling as his lover wriggled and moaned sleepily in response then settled into a deeper layer of dreams. He would be safe behind the wards that protected the apartment and Rayne felt only the reluctance of a thwarted lover as he slipped silently out into the night in search of his prey.

It was cold outside, the sharper edges of autumn crisping the nighttime air and drawing little clouds of breath from passers by. Rayne ignored them, he was focussed and quiet inside as he walked the darkened streets, enjoying the relative stillness of London at night. He felt his way, but followed the information he had been given as well. Xavier had talked to him of the day he spent with Clint before he was attacked and related what he remembered, that Clint had taken him to places where Rayne had once lived.

It took about three quarters of an hour to walk up to Kilburn and he wandered the old familiar streets there for about an hour more before he sensed it. He had been walking in circles deliberately and the traces were definitely following his own. The boy was stalking him, for sure.

Rayne doubled back and pulled into a deeply recessed doorway, lighting a cigarette and waiting. He was far enough off the street to be invisible and sure enough a dark shadow hurried past moments later, then came back more slowly, less certainly than before. The vampire pinched out his smoke and pushed away from the wall, making himself still and silent as Clint moved into the shadows, briefly blocking out the street beyond.

He moved fast then, a hand reaching for the boy’s throat, slamming him back against the reinforced glass of the shop window. The whole unit shuddered and Clint made a strangled, frightened sound as he thrashed and kicked, trying to get free. Rayne’s fingers loosened and he let the boy down to his feet but didn’t release him.

“You and me, we need to have a little talk,” he said huskily.

“I didn’t hurt him!” Clint protested at once. “I dunno what that lanky shite, Matt’s been telling you but I never touched him, on my life! I went back to look for him and I found him like that, on the floor. He’d have died if I hadn’t gone back for him.”

“And why did you go back for him then? Conscience pinching you was it?” Rayne gripped him fiercely under the chin and shook him like a dog shaking a rat.

“Nnnnn…” Clint threw his head from side to side desperately. “Please…! Lemme go… please! Don’t kill me. Xav told me… he told me to be careful. I know now… I know what you are.”

The vampire let go of him as if he was suddenly too hot and Clint staggered back against the glass wall, putting a hand to his throat and gasping for breath. He did not try to run though. Perhaps it was beyond him, but Rayne did not think so.

“What did he tell you?” he asked in a dangerously quiet voice.

“He…” Clint swallowed. “He told me that if I met anyone else that felt the way you did, I was s’posed to run like fuck. Just get the fuck away.”

Rayne blinked at him, trying to see past the plain facts of that admission. He kept his tone neutral as he asked; “What am I then, kiddo? C’mon, you’re the fuckin’ expert here. What is it you’re meant to be running away from?”

Clint was still panting rapidly but he breathed deep enough to whisper; “You’re a Vampire. You drank my blood. You let me stab you but there’s no scar on you. You’re not human.”

Now Rayne sank back against the opposite window, just staring at his living shadow as he weighed up his options. Dominic had once warned him that it might come to this. His half-vampire son would inevitably work out the truth; would come to understand what it was that drew him to his father like a magnet draws a pin. He had hoped that it would take Clint longer, that’s all.

“So what does that make you, huh?” he asked softly, shaking his head.

“I…” Clint swallowed again, looking suddenly very small, very young. “I dunno.”

“Why did you go after Xavier the other night?” Rayne quizzed him, still leaning back against the window, a paler shade in the deep shadows. “Why not leave him if you just wanted to punish me?”

“I didn’t set him up! I swear on my life,” Clint protested, more vehemently. “I likehim, Ray. He’s all right.”

“Why go after him then?” The vampire was still curious.

“He… he left his phone,” Clint said warily, perhaps sensing that it wouldn’t do him any good to tell the whole truth. “I found it after he’d gone and ran after him to give it back. Ask him. He’ll tell you it’s true. I was following his traces the way I follow you. I can feel him in my head the same way, but he’s not like you. I don’t know how, but I can just feel him. And I could feel that he was in trouble. I started to run but I couldn’t find him at first. Then I saw these guys walk out of a side street, one of them was wearing his jacket. I didn’t take them on, they’d ‘ave pasted me. But when they’d gone I went up the street and I found him. I helped him to get home and I waited til Matt came with the key then I cleared off. I know that gobshite doesn’t like me.”

“You’ve not exactly given him any reason to like you, Clint,” Rayne reminded him tersely.

“He’s like you. He’s one of them,” the boy announced, narrowing his eyes.

Rayne contemplated his next response.

“Yeah,” he sighed at last. “He’s a vampire. I made him that way.”

“But I’m not and Xavier’s not,” Clint reasoned.

“No. It doesn’t work like that.” Rayne pushed himself upright and Clint backed self-consciously towards the street, putting distance between them. “I’m not going to touch you. I probably couldn’t Turn you, but you’ve got some of my DNA so you’re half vamp already. You’ve probably figured you’re hard to hurt and you know that you see and feel stuff other guys can’t. That’s because of what you are.”

“What about Xav?” Clint wanted to know. “He’s not your kid. But he heals good. I’ve seen blokes die after getting a kicking like that. He made me walk him home. I wanted him to let me ring for an ambulance but he wouldn’t.”

Rayne felt a little spike of pain inside at the thought of Xavier struggling against the pain, still probably bleeding inside, but desperate to get back to the apartment and just rest; too scared to go to hospital. He bent his head letting his long, dark forelock hide the expression on his face for a moment. When he looked up Clint was watching him warily.

“No, he’s not a vampire either,” he said huskily. “It’s something to do with the bites I’ve given him. It makes him… stronger I guess.”

“And he can feel other vamps, like I do,” Clint said seriously. He hesitated. “You believe me, don’t you? I wouldn’t hurt him. I never meant him to get hurt. I figured he’d stay the night up at the State with us but he wanted to get back.”

“You’re squatting at the old picture house?” Rayne asked, his lips quirking slightly at the thought of it.

“Yeah.” Clint nodded, slightly wary now. He’d not meant to give away his location but it was done now. “Is he okay? Xavier, I mean?”

“Took you long enough to ask,” Rayne said a little bit sharply, but when Clint’s eyes widened he sighed and nodded his head. “He’s going to be okay, yeah. He’s pretty sore right now, but he’ll live. I suppose I ought to thank you for that.”

Clint’s face almost cracked a smile so he quickly added; “Of course, if he’d not been trailed all the way up to bloody Kilburn and left to walk home on his own in the dark he’d not be black and blue and living on fuckin’ painkillers.”

“I’m sorry,” the boy choked at once. “I’m really, really sorry. Tell him… please. Tell him I was asking about him. Some of the guys from the State want to know when he’s gonna come back and show them more dance moves.”

Rayne shook his head slowly. In spite of his anger and his concern, the thought of Xavier mixing it with a bunch of dossers who wanted to know how he worked the moves he did on stage amused him.

“Would you recognise the blokes that you saw come out of the street afterwards if you saw them again?” he asked, determined not to lose sight of the reasons for coming out here tonight.

“I dunno, it was dark,” Clint said awkwardly. “I sort of remember how they felt though. I think I’d know the one that took his jacket, he had a kind of shark-face. I didn’t like the vibe he was giving off much.”

Rayne moved smoothly towards him, coming level with his son as they reached the street. Clint still backed away, his eyes nervous and mistrustful. He touched his throat again, defensively.

“If you see them again, ring me, or come and find me,” Rayne told him. “You know how to get hold of me?”

“I can come to the house?” Clint asked speculatively.

“Don’t push your luck.” Rayne laughed, his tone slightly harsher. “Do you need anything?”

Clint shrugged, a universal gesture of teenage dismissal. He shoved his hands into the deep pockets of his baggy coat. Rayne hesitated for a second then dipped into his breast pocket and pulled out a couple of fairly high denomination notes. He held them out and Clint looked at them as if he’d served the boy an eviction notice.

“Well… if you don’t need it…” the vampire sighed, making a move to put them back.

Clint’s hand flashed from his coat and snatched the money before it disappeared again. He rammed it back down into his own pocket determinedly, his cheeks slightly flushed.

“You’re welcome!” Rayne said sarcastically, when it was clear that no form of appreciation was going to be forthcoming. He turned on his heel and walked back down the High Road the way he had come.

Clint watched him until he was out of sight then sat down heavily on the pavement outside the shop doorway, his limbs still shaking furiously for a long while after Rayne Wylde had disappeared.

~*~

The painkillers had him doped pretty good and Xavier slept deeply and thankfully without any nightmares. He only stirred slightly when Rayne’s cool body slipped back into bed beside him and he settled back down without waking. He radiated heat like a little furnace with his lover wrapped lightly around him.

When he woke up the next morning he stretched sleepily and noticed he was slightly less stiff and sore then he had been the day before. Although ‘slightly less’ than terrible pain meant he still ached from head to toe and was not moving too fast. 

Rayne wasn’t in bed with him so he got up and went to take a shower, stopping to look in the mirror on the way. The bruises were still a dark purple-black in the centres but when he studied them closely he saw the very edges were beginning to get a feathery lighter look to them. That was pretty amazing really. It’d only been two days and Xav knew from experience that bruises like these usually got worse for a few days before they started getting any better. These looked like he’d maybe been wearing them a week already!

Dominic’s herbs must have really worked, he thought. His ribs still ached like a bitch though and he carefully got into the shower.

When he got back out he wrapped a towel around his waist and wandered toward the heavenly smell of fresh brewed coffee drifting through the apartment. His lover was in the kitchen when Xavier found him, as was Matty Greening, but the younger vampire was mutedly polite this morning. He wore as serious an expression as Xav had ever seen on his sharp, piercing modified features. Matt was inhaling the steam from a mug of black coffee and Rayne poured another for Xavier without being asked. He was perched on the edge of the kitchen counter like a teenager, bare feet swinging lightly.

“You look better than the last time I clocked you,” Matty commented, flashing a fanged grin at Xav.

Xav took the mug from Rayne gratefully, kissing his cheek lightly before going for the cream and sugar. He gave Matty a slightly lopsided grin as he slid onto a bar stool. The last time he’d wandered into the kitchen in nothing but a towel to find Matt Greening in there, Rayne’s ex hadn’t been nearly as pleasant. Xav sipped almost delicately at the coffee before he answered, “I feel a bit better.”

Actually he still felt like he’d been hit by a truck and was a little fuzzy headed from the trace of narcotic still in his system.

“What time is it? When do we have to go?” Xav asked, taking a deeper sip of coffee.

“There’s no rush, we can go whenever you’re comfortable. If we fly up today I need to confirm the seats by mid-day though,” Rayne said levelly, stroking his hair.

“So how long are you gonna be up there?” Matty wanted to know.

His Sire shrugged one shoulder casually. “Not sure, until Lady W gets sick of us I guess. When he was trying to teach me to use protection spells I was up and down from there all the time.”

“We were on tour as well, though,” Matt reminded him, as much for Xavier’s benefit. He winked at the young mortal. “Imagine that? On the fuckin’ road for three months with a neurotic baby vampire! How much fuckin’ fun was that!”

Matty laughed and shook his ragged blond dreads incredulously at the memory.

Xavier did try and imagine it and had to shake his own head. Thinking of how it felt when he was being bombarded by everyone else’s emotions and then thinking what it would be like to then be dropped into a concert setting, not only that but having to be on stage and perform? Holy shit, he didn’t think he could’ve done it. He would’ve gone totally batshit.

Staring contemplatively into his mug he was reminded keenly of his own problems right now with control and keeping people out of his head, whether they were trying to get in or not. Dominic had suspected that if there was distance between him and Rayne that he might have more trouble, and he’d been right. While Rayne had been in Manchester Xav could hardly walk down the street without his mood shifting with each person he passed. He couldn’t always be tied to Rayne’s side (as appealing as that sounded) and unless he wanted to become a recluse he needed to get a handle on this.

“I think we should go today.” Xavier said, a hint of determination in his tone. “Picking up everyone else’s emotional shit every time I go out the door is making me crazy. I mean, it’s gotten better since Italy… but when you were gone it was a lot harder to block things out. I wanna figure out why and Dom seems pretty sure he can help.”

“He’s a good teacher,” Matty said cheerfully. “Nice house as well. Mental as anything, but he’s fairly harmless.”

“It’s his taste in sidekicks that I always question,” Rayne commented in a rather more sour tone.

“Awrr…” Matt chuckled at him and winked at Xavier over his mug. “Gabe’s a pussycat! He’s gorgeous, Ray’s just jealous.”

“All I’m saying is, if you’re gonna have your host’s lapdog try to hump your fuckin’ leg you don’t want him to be six foot plus with fangs that could rip the throat out of a rhino!” Rayne argued.

“He’s cute though,” Matty said, still grinning at Rayne’s obvious agitation. “And he understands the wizardy stuff. Sometimes he explains it better too.”

“He’s got a magic wand to die for!” Rayne mimicked Matty’s coy tone nastily and made kissy faces at him.

Matt calmly flicked him the bird in response. “Like I said; jealous!”

Xavier long lashes were at half mast as he looked from one to the other off them. Privately he thought Matty was being foolish if he thought Dominic washarmless, but he wasn’t going to enlighten him. Besides, something more important had grabbed his attention. “What’re you talking about?”

Both Rayne and Matt looked at him but it was Matt that finally spoke up. “Didn’t anyone tell you DW’s lover is a werewolf?”

Xav blinked slowly at him. “A… like, a real werewolf?” Xav asked slowly, not sure if they were teasing him.

“Would there be any point in pretending to be a werewolf?” Rayne asked, almost rhetorically.

“What other kind of werewolf is there?” Matty grinned. “Course he’s real, sugar tits. Are you scared now?”

Xav gave him a narrow look. “No, I’m not scared,” he answered flatly.

Rayne stretched out one foot and gave his Fledge a little shove that almost knocked him off the chair. “Okay, stop fucking about with him now.”

Matt sulked for a millisecond, then looked slyly at Xavier. “He’s hung like a werebull!”

“I said, stop it!” Rayne threw a teaspoon at him which clipped the side of Matt’s head and made him yelp.

Xav couldn’t help the little smile that curled his lips but he hid it behind his mug as he took another sip of his coffee. He supposed he should be irritated that yet again he’d been left in the dark about something kind of important, but at least he’d found out this time before he’d really stepped in it so he wasn’t too worked up. He glanced at Rayne speculatively now though, and it didn’t take much to guess with all the innuendo and Rayne’s desire to shut Matty up that he’d probably fucked this guy…er, werewolf.

 

Xavier didn’t need to ask. The look he gave Rayne said he knew, now Rayne looked uncomfortable but Xav softened his expression into a smile. His cup empty he got up to rinse it in the sink. His towel had slipped down a bit so that it was clinging rather precariously to his narrow hips, the barest touch threatening to drop it entirely, and giving his boyfriend and Matt a tantalising view of his sleek backside despite the discolouration of the bruises there.

“So, is there anything else I should know?” Xav asked while he washed the cup. “Is there werewolf etiquette like vampire etiquette? You know, like no jokes about crotch sniffing, or something?”

“He’s a mutt,” Rayne said darkly. “They don’t have etiquette. Throw him a fuckin’ stick and he’ll be happy.”

“Sit on his fuckin’ stick and he’ll be happier!” Matty giggled.

This time Rayne gave him no warning but he did kick the chair out from under the younger vampire as he hopped down from the counter to fetch his mobile and ring the airport. He leaned up against Xavier whilst he was waiting for the call to connect, gently divesting the boy of his towel and stroking a cool hand up and down his belly, into his groin. The touch was light but made painful muscles dance involuntarily under his fingers.

Xavier swayed back into Rayne, a soft moan on his lips as his fingers caressed him. He turned in his lover’s embrace, snaking his own arms around him and nipping lightly at the side of his throat. Xav’s eyes glinted playfully at Rayne as the call connected and he started to talk. Xav skated his hand down his boyfriend’s belly and crotch, grinning slightly as he fondled him through his jeans. He didn’t think whoever was on the other end would be as appreciative as Dominic had been of Rayne’s distraction on the phone though.

Rayne closed his eyes, biting his lips over a low moan as he listened to the operator and managed to answer her questions as neutrally as possible. Just occasionally his words trailed off into a little sigh as he and Xavier caressed one another. Even Matty was chuckling softly into his hand as he watched the performance.

Xav licked the curve of Rayne’s ear as he eased down his zipper and slid his hand inside. He grinned impishly as Rayne stumbled over a word and closed his eyes. Curling his fingers very lightly around his shaft Xav slowly jacked him until Rayne was stiff and throbbing in his hand. Rayne seemed to be listening to something that the operator was saying on the other end of the line for he made small, affirmative noises in between moving the phone away from his face to breathe a little harder.

“Uhuhh… Mmmm… yeah… thr-three-thirty… fine… yeah… j-just two… uhuhhhh… that’s right… right… yeah… mmmhhh, that’s good…”

His eyes opened and he looked straight at Xavier as he said this last part, licking his lips hungrily. His eyes glittered with mischief and no small amount of lust.

“Ohh yeah, that’s really good!” he panted appreciatively.

Matty, who was still sitting on the floor was killing himself all over again trying not to laugh out loud.

Still grinning Xavier leaned closer as if he were going to kiss Rayne but detoured at the last moment to nibble along his jaw. A moment later he had the button on Rayne’s jeans popped and was slipping carefully down to his knees, tugging them halfway down his thighs as he went. He gave Rayne’s hips a little push, backing him against the cupboard before he wrapped his hand more firmly around his cock and took him into the heat of his mouth.

“Uhhh…” Rayne’s voice quivered on the edge of a response and he put his hand over the phone and groaned desperately. His fingers tapped Xavier’s shoulder, then pointed down in the direction his jeans had already gone. “Wuhh… wallet!” he panted.

Xav ran a hand down his leg without even lifting up off him and retrieved the requested item from his pocket, passing it back up with a grin that stretched his lips teasingly around Rayne’s shaft. Matt was snorting into his hand as he rolled around on the floor watching this, his skinny sides shaking furiously.

With the phone propped between his cheek and his shoulder, Rayne juggled his credit card out of the wallet deftly and squinted at the number. It took him three attempts to read it out. Xavier’s mouth felt so good around his cock by now that he was tempted to just pretend he’d lost his connection.

Xavier continued his oral assault, skilfully working his lips wetly over Rayne’s straining shaft while his lover tried to get all the information out over the phone. He had no idea whether he managed to get everything sorted or not by the time he hung up and he didn’t care, Xav was too busy gently sucking first one smooth nut and then the other while he stroked up and down on his shaft.

Rayne dropped the phone and his wallet lightly onto the counter beside him and forced the fingers of both hands through Xavier’s blond curls.

“You are evil!” he exhaled huskily, gazing down at him with eyes gone dark with lust. “You will pay for that!”

His fingers laced at the nape of Xavier’s neck and he guided his lover’s lips to the head of his straining erection and began to thrust slow and hard between them, pushing against the roof of his mouth.

Xavier looked up at him, batting his eyelashes coyly as he wriggled his tongue on the underside of Rayne’s cock head. His eyes slipped closed as he opened wider and relaxed his jaw. Rayne pushed deeper and Xav moaned a soft hum of pleasure around him, tightening his lips around his shaft.

“That’s more like it,” Rayne crooned happily. “Ohhhh yeah! Suck that for me, sweetheart. Suck me off, you little fuckin’ tease!”

His eyes moved beyond the top of his lover’s head towards Matt, who was still sprawled on the floor against the cupboard doors. His Fledge had one hand down the front of his pants, tugging eagerly on his cock as he watched the naked mortal kneel and take Rayne in his mouth so sweetly. Rayne’s eyes widened but the smile on his lips was almost feral as he glanced down to where Xavier’s firm, golden cheeks swayed restlessly from side to side. Even on his knees, giving head, he could not sit still.

Matty’s grin had fangs as he knelt up and unbuttoned his fly, releasing his long, curving, multiple-pierced cock. He crawled slowly towards them now, his dark, hungry gaze fixed on Xavier’s pert arse.

Xav was so focused he didn’t notice Matt moving until he felt cool hands caress lightly over his hips. He didn’t exactly pause what he was doing but there was a small hesitation on his forward glide. He didn’t make any protest though. He was not exactly in the best of shape for an energetic threesome, but his hard cock didn’t seem aware of this.

Matt bent his head, spitting on the pulsing crown of his cut dick and stroking the wetness slowly between Xav’s cheeks. His lips wandered slowly over the younger man’s neck, grazing his skin ever so gently with his sharp little fangs.

Rayne leaned against the counter, arching his back and thrusting faster in his lover’s mouth but he growled; “Easy, Matthew! Don’t ‘urt him or I will make you suffer, babe.”

“Promises, promises!” Matty crooned, spooning up against Xav from behind and rubbing himself eagerly between the blond youth’s slender thighs. The studded ring in the head of his prick nudged Xavier’s balls urgently and he licked the blond’s naked back as his long, honey-coloured dreadlocks tickled Xavier’s shoulders and arms.

Xav might have given the vampire a warning to take it easy as well but Rayne had his mouth a bit too occupied for that and the fingers laced behind his head did not want to let him come up. That was all right with him though, giving head always got him so hot. Especially like this, where it was easy for him to take his lover right down to the base, which he did now with a purr of pleasure in his throat.

Xav’s smaller frame fit nicely into the arch of Matt’s body, the feel the vampire’s lips and soft hair tickling along his skin made Xav shiver and he swayed his pert little ass seductively against his crotch.

If there was one thing Matty understood, it was pain; how to cause it and how to avoid it too. From a personal point of view, he loved a little bit of hurt with the hotness, but Xavier really was beat up and it was only the fact that he could feelRayne’s recent session with the boy that assured him it would be okay. His tongue lapped sweetly down Xavier’s naked back making him wriggle as hard as he dared to. Gently he kissed and licked at the tight pucker of flesh between the mortal’s cheeks. Such a sexy little bud, it was! Matty licked his finger and eased it in, pumping the boy’s hole slowly and spitting a slow river of drool over the flexing ring until he felt that Rayne’s adorable mate was ready for a second finger.

Rayne was looking intently into Xavier’s eyes as the blond sucked and gagged on him, determined not to let up unless he absolutely had to breathe. Matt’s fangs were out and his hunger was contagious but Rayne kept it under control, moving slower in his lover’s mouth as he watched Matty stroking a handful of saliva and pre-cum up and down his slick, studded shaft. He was ready to come but knew that Xavier would probably beat him to it, especially when that long, curving, studded tool slipped into him and began to stroke his prostate hard.

If he could not take his lover’s blood he at least wanted to have his lips around Xavier’s cock when that moment arrived, and if that meant holding off on his own climax for a few minutes it would be worth the wait.

Xavier slowed down on Rayne as he felt his lover ease back some. He didn’t let him go entirely though, still caressing him with his mouth slowly as Matty stretched and readied him. He wriggled a little more eagerly, desire warring with the need to go slow and easy. His mouth watered with the salty taste of his mate’s precum on his tongue and his fingers flexed where they held on lightly to Rayne’s thighs.

The soft little hums and purrs of pleasure he gave grew deeper as he felt the pierced head of Matt’s cock push against his ring and pop inside. His eyes closed and his thighs spread further almost automatically. His own erection curved lightly up his flat belly, clear drops of precum glistening at his slit and sliding down slowly. Matt sunk in a bit deeper and Xav’s groan reverberated through Rayne’s shaft as he hungrily went down on him.

Matty rocked forward, crouching astride Xavier as Rayne whispered; “Bring him up for me, sweetheart.”

He needed no further instruction. For years Matty had been closely attuned to his Sire’s needs, even before he was Turned he had always done his best to give Rayne what he most deeply desired and now it was almost second nature for him. His arms folded possessively around Xavier’s body, not pulling him tight but enfolding him closely so that when he began to rise from a crouch, with his cock buried inside the delicious young man, Xavier had to come with him.

It would have hurt to try and stay on his knees. It hurt a little to rise but he was supported all the way by Matt’s arms and his deceptively slender body. The blond maned vampire was stronger than he looked. His hand slid up Xavier’s chest to his neck and throat, pulling the young mortal back into his arms as he slowly stood upright, with Xav still impaled on his erect dick.

Rayne’s fingers released Xavier’s hair and in spite of his best attempts to keep sucking, Xav was gently pulled off his lover’s cock. At the same time Rayne sank to his knees and it all made sense. Ray nuzzled softly into Xavier’s crotch and kissed the mottled skin there, his lips no more than a whisper against the silky flesh. Behind Xavier, Matt began to thrust steadily, letting him feel each slow, invasive stroke of his pierced cock shaft.

The whole manoeuvre was achieved smoothly, gracefully, almost effortlessly, which Xavier could well appreciate in his battered state. The arm that slid around him and up his chest remained firmly in place, as did the long fingers circling his throat. Although Matty didn’t apply much pressure, that hold sent ripples of excitement shuddering through Xav in ways he wouldn’t have cared to explain, but it was clear enough to both vampires how turned on he was. He was panting slightly and his eyes were huge and dark with desire as he wriggled between them.

Xav leaned forward, bracing his hands on the counter for balance and rolling his hips fluidly to impale himself harder on Matt’s thrusting cock. The little metal balls of his ladder were doing incredible things to his sensitive ring and, inch by inch, to the quivering cum button deep inside him.

“Uhhh! Yes-s-s-s…” he breathed. “Just like that…” He squeezed the muscles inside on the backstroke, milking Matty’s long member as he tumbled deeper into the pleasure zone.

Matt uttered a low, gasping, growling sound that was something less than human. He rolled with the motion of Xavier’s hips, pushing smoothly into him as Xavier came back to meet him. His breath was as cool as a draught from the grave on the blond man’s neck and his fangs scraped the skin there once more but did not bite.

Rayne’s tongue caressed the underbelly of Xavier’s prominent shaft, lashing intimately up and down the throbbing vein that ran from his lover’s aching balls to the swollen, leaking head of his delicious prick. He kissed his lover’s cock with a passion to match Xav’s own, working the tip of his wriggling tongue upward slowly until it was teasing the slit in the plump, purple glans and lapping up the salty spill that wept from the single eye.

“Reach up,” he breathed huskily. “Put your hands at the back of Matt’s head and keep them there. Give yourself to us. Let us do whatever we want with you.”

Xavier’s head suddenly swam with a dizzy rush at his lover’s words and his moan was more like a whimper of need. He did as Rayne told him, reaching up slowly and stretching himself carefully to lace his fingers behind Matt’s neck. His body arced lightly, curved against Matt’s front. He may have been badly bruised and sore but his lean dancer’s body was still strong and fluidly graceful. His head turned to one side, rubbing his cheek almost cat like on the taller man shoulder and unconsciously elongating the slender column of his throat right under the vampire’s nose.

“Fuckin’ fang-teaser!” Matty panted, driving into him slow and hard.

Rayne chuckled softly, with his mouth full, cupping Xavier in one cool, long-fingered hand and caressing his balls very carefully.

Xavier’s thighs quivered as the low vibration coupled with the smooth caress of Rayne’s tongue stud on the sensitive underside of his cock head drove him up a few notches. He balanced between the two men easily as they moved together, Matty sinking into him over and over and Rayne getting down to serious business sucking his throbbing cock. He let the flow of their rhythm take over, crooning his pleasure in soft little mewls as they fucked him with a slow simmering passion. He pulsed between Rayne’s soft lips and Matty’s throbbing tool, his breath quickening as he climbed higher and higher.

“Ohhhh…uhh, I’m gonna cum!” he got out breathlessly a second before the explosion rocked him.

Rayne nodded down on him, swallowing his enthusiastic ejaculation deep. His breath was fast and needy in Xavier’s bucking crotch as he lifted his head, a fierce smile parting his cum-glossed lips. Their eyes met for a moment, all alive with passion and pleasure.

“Uhhh… yessss!” Matty hissed ecstatically as he fucked a few good blasts of his own into the tight vacuum of Xavier’s twitching chute.

As he pulled his leaking prick slowly out of the blond boy’s arse, Rayne pounced on the other vampire and put him on the floor. Xavier only had a moment to wonder if he felt slighted before he understood his lover’s reasoning. Rayne was fired up and normally that wouldn’t be a problem between them but today he was still concerned about hurting Xav. And so it was Matty who bore the brunt of his savage hunger.

Rayne had him pinned down in a flash and was up him almost immediately. Matt screamed like a drama queen as his Sire hammered him fast and deep, his eyes closed tightly as he bucked the last of his frustration into Matt’s more than willing arsehole. The groan Rayne’s climax tore from his throat was low and animalistic as he sank against Matt’s arching back, but it was Xavier that he pulled in for a long slow kiss once he could breathe again.

A confusing wash of emotions swirled around inside Xav as he returned Rayne’s sweet kisses with a tender fire. Although he understood the reason, he was still envious of the unrestrained passion Rayne just spent in Matty and at the same time it had felt a bit ‘off’ watching them and knowing that Rayne was using his ex as a fill in for himself right now. Xav knew Matt liked the rough handling but he didn’t seem to mind being used like that either. The vampire definitely had a happy, sated, glow about him which only made it seem weirder to Xav and he had an inkling now of why Rayne and Matty weren’t together anymore.

Rayne broke off the kiss, gently bumping their noses together for a moment or two before leaning back with a satisfied sigh. Xavier impulsively leaned toward Matt and took his chin in his hand, giving him a sweet and hot kiss, if briefer than the one he’d shared with Rayne. After all, he’d sucked Matty off, been bitten by him, and let him fuck him, but in all that he hadn’t yet kissed him.

“Awww, you all right, Lover?” the lanky blond vampire purred happily at him. “That was a blast, by the way.”

“Don’t get used to it,” Rayne warned him, levering himself to his feet and buttoning his fly. His fingers tugged on Matty’s dreadlocks and the younger vamp looked up at him with a fanged grin.

“Killjoy!”

“That’s me,” Rayne nodded, reaching down to help Xavier to his feet. “Now fuck off. We’ve got a plane to catch or hadn’t you noticed?”

Matt bounced to his feet and made himself decent with a little sigh.

“Have fun with the big bad wolf,” he teased, winking at Xav.

Xavier just shook his head, a small grin tugging at one corner of his mouth. The other man just didn’t know when to quit! Picking up the towel he’d been briefly wearing he dropped it over his shoulder and headed back out of the kitchen. “See you later,” he said before disappearing to get cleaned up and maybe lay back down for a little while before they had to leave.

When Xavier came out of the en suite, his mate had already cleaned up in the other bathroom and changed into a pair of dark, fitted suit pants and a tailored, dark green shirt. He was sitting on the chest at the foot of the bed, his dark hair slicked back from his face, playing with one of his rings. Xavier had noticed it before but at the time it hadn’t registered as anything significant. The platinum band had a lot of very tiny, very twinkly little stones set in a line around it. His instincts said diamonds, which made it a special piece of bling already. The position on the third finger of his left hand already had his mind working overtime, especially in light of his discovery of the dress yesterday.

Rayne took it off when he came out of the bathroom but he slipped it over the index finger of the other hand and carried on playing with it distractedly.

“Taxi’s coming in three quarters of an hour,” the vampire said, looking up at him with a fond little smile.

Xavier nodded and quietly went about getting dressed, aiming for comfort. He’d already thrown the necessaries for the trip into a bag and now he pulled on a pair of dark trousers in a soft clingy material and a loose silk shirt in dark red. Then he sat down next to Rayne and kissed his cheek.

“That’s really nice.” He commented neutrally on the ring, trying his hardest to keep his emotions clamped down and not do anything stupid, like demand to know if he was actually married to the mysterious woman in Manchester.

 

His lover leaned against him, holding up the finger with the ring perched just above his middle knuckle, studying it for a moment. He turned his head and touched his lips to Xavier’s mouth softly then, just rubbing noses with him, looking at him with such bewilderment that Xav briefly worried his memory had gone again.

Then the shutters were down. Not like he had been in Italy, not screening Xavier out completely, but he turned back with a businesslike, unhappy smile and closed his fingers, moving to his feet, pushing things into bags and pockets. When he straightened from his task again, the ring was no longer on his finger and the matter had been dismissed, just like that.

“You look gorgeous in that,” he said tenderly. “Are you ready? The cab will be here soon.”

“Yeah, I’m ready.” Xav answered quietly. He managed a smile for Rayne but it didn’t quite reach his eyes. He had hoped Rayne might open up to him a little bit, but he supposed he wasn’t ready. Xav was good about knowing when he should and shouldn’t push, now wasn’t the time to push, so he let it be.

 

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