Authors: Kathi S. Barton
Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Erotica, #Paranormal, #Romantic Erotica
Myra stood up and came to them, her dress black now, as was her hair. Elijah wondered briefly if her moods, and not only her magic, changed her clothing. When she handed an envelope to Noelle, he looked at the logo on the front. The Board of Vampires.
“When he passed away, his things were put into a trust. The money, as with the other items that he left behind, were set aside in the event that someone, a child, came forth to file a claim against it. The money would be kept for a period of two hundred years. Then at the end, the money would be put in a vault with his name on it and be used should the need ever arise. I have talked to the Board and they have asked me to give this to you.” Noelle looked at Elijah before putting her hands behind her back. “You must take it, child. Your father would have wanted you to have it.”
“But I don’t want it.” She looked at Elijah again, and he waited for her. Whatever was in the envelope was hers, and he wanted her to have it. But if she didn’t, then that was fine with him as well. “It should go to some sort of fund for someone that needs it.”
“You can do that should you want to.” The envelope was suddenly in her hands. “There. Now that that’s settled, let us move on to Helenia.”
“She’s on her way here. I had a conversation with her just before things started to come together for your family.” Noah got up and handed each of them a sheet of paper. “I had Joe make a list of the things that I found in her mind. There was a great deal to sort through, but this is the most important thing. The conversation she had with a demon just before she was turned is what is going to end this for her. And for you, Sterling. And so you know, this is the only creation of a she-devil that I have ever known.”
“This man, this is you?” Noah shook his head at Sterl. “Then who is this person that is going to take care of her? I’m assuming that it must be someone powerful.”
“He is. Very much so. I don’t think he believes himself to be, but he is the only one that can take her down.” Elijah got it right away, but Sterl took a bit longer. And when he stood up, the paper falling from his fingers, Elijah felt his wolf moving along his skin.
“No. And I can’t say this enough, no fucking way no.” Sterl looked at their mother. “I’m sorry, Mom, but I want him to understand that I can’t do this.”
“And why not?” Everyone turned to Scott when he asked. “Why do you think that you’re not strong enough to take this woman out? She already thinks you’re an alpha. And so you know, you are. You might not be as strong as Trent is, but I think that the only reason you aren’t is because you’ve never tried to be. I not only think you can do this, but I think you should be the one to end her life.”
“I can’t do it.” His dad stood up when Sterl started pacing. “I’m just getting my strength back from the last time she came at me. And that was almost five years ago. If you think I can do this, then you might as well have left me broken as I was before.”
“You were never broken, son. You were down, but not out. That woman, she hurt you in more ways than we can ever know, I understand that, but there isn’t any reason why you can’t get her out of our lives.”
“Dad, you have no idea what kind of things she did to me.” He said that he did. “No, you can’t know. You don’t know the horror I felt whenever I thought of her. Whenever I closed my eyes at night.” His dad nodded. “She took everything I was from me.”
“Only if you let her, son. And we did know the horror she put you through. We saw it in your face and eyes every time we looked at you. When we saw the way you hid from us, keeping away so that you’d think we’d not notice. You’re our son, our family. We hurt when you did. We ached with you. Son, we were hurt because there was little to nothing we could do to help you. But we can now.”
“I don’t want to do this.” Noelle stood up and said she would then. “You can’t do this. You’re mostly human. She’d kill you right away.”
“I’ll be beside her.” Joe stood up then and held onto Noelle’s hand. “I’ll be there with her when she takes her on.”
Elijah stood and took Noelle’s hand into his. “I will as well. I give you both what I am and what I have to help.”
Scott winked at him as he took his other hand, claiming that he’d be beside them as well. Each of them stood, giving their strength to Noelle. When she moved toward Sterl, Elijah wondered what she’d say to him. When he backed from her, Noelle took him into her arms and held him.
“I love you, Sterl. You’re like the annoying brother that I always wanted. But if you don’t want to do this, we’ll do it for you. We’d gladly do this for you. But honestly, and I think you’ll agree, you’ll feel a hell of a lot better if you do this, take her on.” He held her and sobbed that he was afraid. “So am I. Every day I get up, I’m terrified that my family is going to come for me. That once they find out about the money, then they’ll beat me until I’m dead to take it. But you’ve been there for me. Every step of the way, you and the others have been there for me. This she-bitch? She doesn’t stand a chance with all of us behind you.”
“What if she hurts one of you? Then what will I do?” Noelle looked up at Sterl and grinned. “I don’t think I like that look on you. It’s sort of scary.”
“If she hurts one of us, then we whoop her ass, but good. But you only have to hurt her, Sterl. There is nothing that says you have to kill her.” Elijah looked down at the paper that was given to him and saw the words there he’d not thought of before now. “The demon only says that a man will cut her first, and then she will be finished.”
“I don’t understand. I only have to cut her and she’s dead?” Elijah looked at Noah when he cleared his throat. “Please tell me that it’s not that simple.”
“It isn’t and it is. You must cut her before she does you. And I assure you that she’ll be trying her best to cut you as well. But the good news is, when she cuts you, you’re dead. If you manage to cut her first, she becomes the plaything for a demon for the rest of eternity and beyond.” Noah smiled at him as he continued. “I’ve been working with the Grand Witch and Myra. We have a way to weaken her even more than she already is. Helenia won’t know what hit her until it’s too late.”
“Well, that makes me think this is going to be a walk in the park then. Just cut a woman who tears people in half for fun. Oh, and let’s not forget that she can also levitate, as well as has these freaky powers that make her pretty much invincible to most anything I can dish out to her.” His mom patted him on the cheek before she slapped him. “What was that for?”
“You want to live? Or do you want to sit around sulking about what she did to you?” Sterl told her that he wanted to live. “And how do you expect that to happen if you whine and moan about how you can’t do this or that? Huh? Do you think this woman is just going to stay away because poor Sterling doesn’t think he has it in him to win? You think she’s going to say, ‘Oh well, let me go easier on the poor man, he’s being such a baby.’”
“I’m not being a baby.” Elijah laughed and his mom turned to him. When she seemed satisfied that he wasn’t going to laugh again, she looked back at his brother. “She’s a she-devil, not anything that we’ve encountered before.”
“She’s a woman after one of my pups. Do you think that she’s ever come across anyone like me before?” Sterl shook his head. “You’re damned right she’s not. And don’t you think I’m going to let you stand up to her alone either. She hurt you, and in my opinion, she’s going to pay with her life. And you’re going to do it. Now, I’m going to go and see if there is any pie left from dinner and have myself a piece. I, for one, could use a little treat.”
When she left the room, Noah turned to him. “Remind me to never piss your mother off. I’m pretty sure if she were to run the Board of Vampires, we’d have no more problems like we have with Helenia.”
“I’m pretty sure that if she ran the country that there be no more wars or fighting. She’d have some heads roll if there was.” Noah nodded. “But you gotta love her. She’s got Sterl thinking he can do this now.”
“I know that he can.”
Elijah hoped so. There was a lot riding on this.
Elijah waited until the count of ten before he took off to the woods after her. Noelle had made him promise three times that he’d give her this head start. He’d had to start over twice when he lost track of where he was every time she sent an image of what she wanted him to do to her when he caught her. Christ, the woman was going to kill him.
He could smell her. Not well, but enough that he could find her. She told him that she’d been working on her skills in hiding. He was pretty sure that Joe had been helping her. And he knew that Joe had been teaching her a few other things as well. Like how to fight.
Hand-to-hand combat was something that his brothers thought that every woman should know. And once Joe started training a few of the woman in the pack on how to defend themselves, it had been a big hit within their group. Not that any mate could hurt their other half, but it was nice to know that they could protect themselves in the world around them. Especially now that the plant was going to bring in all kinds of people.
I don’t think you’re trying very hard.
He wasn’t and told her that.
Why not? Don’t you want to play?
I do. With you, but I was thinking about things. Mostly the pack, but also you.
She told him she had been thinking of the stupid envelope. That’s what they were calling it now, the stupid envelope.
What are you going to do with your money now that you can use it?
He knew she had a few things on her mind, but she’d not made many decisions as yet. One of them was to purchase one of the buildings downtown and turned it into a shop. He knew that she’d be good at that as well.
Your dad said he’d gift me the smaller building that he owns. I think it would be perfect, but I don’t want him to give it to me.
He told her about how they’d given Trent the cabin in the woods when he’d gotten married.
That’s what he said too. That it was a wedding gift. I pointed out that it wasn’t for you but for me, and he said that you’d be happy if I was.
I am and I would be.
She snorted at him, and that’s when he saw her. Moving slowly so that his wolf didn’t make a sound, he stopped when she looked right at him.
You heard me.
No, believe it or not, but I could smell you.
He nodded, and she told him to close his eyes.
I’m going to try and hide this time. If you find me, I’ll take something off. Not too much though. It’s getting chilly.
I’ll warm you up.
She was laughing in his head when he sat down and closed his eyes.
I’d take the building. If you don’t, then Dad will hound you to death about it. I love him, but I tell you, once he gets something in his head, it’s there until he gets what he wants.
He told me that he wants grandchildren.
He started to stand and go to her to find out what she said, but she continued.
I want children with you. But I’m not sure what sort of mom I’d be. And what happens to our child being that I’m part vamp and you’re a full-blooded wolf?
I don’t care so long as they’re happy and healthy. And I thought of something this morning. About how you can tell when someone isn’t human. I think you can do that because of the vampire blood in your system.
He stood up when he felt it had been long enough, and made his way to where he’d seen her last.
I can smell you stronger now. You’re wet, aren’t you?
I am. And I’ve had to take off my panties because of it.
His wolf snarled at him to get going after her.
Did you know that I don’t have on a bra either? I thought that I’d be naked and fucked by now.
Elijah leapt over the log in front of him, keeping his nose in the air to find her. Her scent was everywhere, it seemed. It was as if she’d sprayed each leaf with her juices just to confuse him. When he found what he thought was her footprint, he followed it until he saw her again.
She was indeed without her pants and panties. She also had taken off her shoes and socks. As he made his way to her, careful of where the wind was blowing, he jumped at her when she turned. His wolf held her down with his big body as he tore at her blouse.
He wants to eat you.
She nodded and opened her legs for them. His wolf moved down her body to her pussy and sniffed at her.
Come for him, he needs it.
As soon as she opened her legs wider for him, his wolf dove at her like he was going to tear into her skin. But instead of hurting her, he brought her three times with just his tongue at her clit. When he began taking her cream into his mouth by fucking her with his tongue, Noelle curled her fingers into his fur and held him to her.
His wolf seemed to be content with feasting on her. Elijah wanted her as well, and when his wolf let him go, he leaned over her, hard and aching. Fisting his cock, Elijah leaned back on his heels and watched her.
“Let me taste you.” He wanted that as well and moaned when she wrapped her hand around him. “I’ve wanted to do this to you since the first time I saw you standing there naked for me.”
“Anytime you want to suck on my cock, you go— Mother fuck.”
She took him deep into her mouth, swallowing past the tight muscles in her throat until he could feel it wrapped around him. And every time she bobbed her head over him, he knew she was going to bring him quickly.
He held her to him when her fingers touched his balls, and when she cupped them in her hands, he jerked back. She looked up at him and asked him if she’d hurt him.
“No. Christ, no. I was ready to come, and that’s not going to give you much if I do.” She let go of his cock, and he heard a small pop sound. “I need to fuck you.”
“You will when you come down my throat.” She fisted him, and he saw stars. “Give me all of you, Elijah, and I will turn around and let you fuck me like an animal. Would you like that?”
It was all he could do just to get his head to nod at her. And when she took him in her mouth again, he noticed that she was no longer gentle but trying her best to bring him as quickly as she could. Even when her fingers slid along his balls, it wasn’t until she gave them a small squeeze that he knew that he was done for.
He fucked her mouth harder then. Up on his knees now, he held her to him as he felt his balls tighten and his impending climax run along his spine. When she nipped at him, her teeth just grazing his sensitive skin, he came hard, his cock slamming down the back of her throat like he wanted to in her pussy.
Elijah saw stars and bursts of light in bright colors. He heard his wolf, begging him to take her so he could bite her again. He was sure that he was finished, that he’d come about all he could, when he looked down at her still holding his cock in her mouth.
Pulling her mouth from him was the hardest thing he’d ever done. He was hard still and getting harder, and he needed her. Turning her around so that her ass was in front of him, Elijah slammed forward into her pussy at the same time he slid his finger into her tight rosebud. Her screams had him wanting more.
“Come and I’ll make it worth your while.” She begged him for it now…whatever it was, she wanted it. “I’m going to bite you here, on your shoulder when you come. Then I’m going to empty my cock inside of you and fill you.”
“Yes, please, now.”
He told her that she had to come. Begged her to do so. As soon as she screamed again, he leaned over her and took her shoulders to the ground as he tore into her flesh.
Her taste was rich. The moment that he sucked her hot blood into his mouth, he knew what it was. She was ready. And more than likely they had created a child today. Fucking her harder now, needing to be sure that they had, Elijah saw lights again, bright and shiny when he came in her again.
Elijah didn’t move when he was complete. That’s what it felt like to him too, that he was complete. When he thought he could roll to his back to the ground without hurting her, he did so and held her to him even as his heart slowed. Now he had to figure out a way to tell her what they’d just done. Turning in his arms, she laid her head on his chest and yawned.
“Joe told me today.” He didn’t even bother asking her what Joe might have told her. “Your mom too. She was a lot more delicate about it than Joe, but she did finally get around to telling me that I was ready to have a child.”
“I’m assuming that since you didn’t stop me, that you’re all right with that.” She looked at him then. “I am, if you want to know.”
“I am not sure, to be honest with you. I mean about having a child. But I do want them with you.” He nodded, understanding completely. “Joe said that you’d be able to tell, but it might have been too late when you figured it out. I thought about mentioning it, but I was sort of afraid you’d tell me no.”
“I want children, as many as we can have.” She nodded, but there was more. He knew it. “The envelope, I was going to ask you what you think might be in it. Or did she tell you?”
“No, she didn’t tell me. I’m not sure that she knows for sure, to be honest. I think that she believes there is money in it. But how much, I’m not sure.” She nodded. “Are you afraid that it’s something more?”
“No. I mean, it’s not like he knew about me. And even if he did, I’m not sure that he would have wanted me either. I know what they said about him being bored and tired, but I can’t think that I would have made any difference in his life.”
Elijah lifted her chin up so that he could look at her. “What do you think a child of ours is going to do to us? Do you think that it’ll make no difference in our lives? Are you thinking that it will mean little to us?”
“No, I’m going to love it with all that I am and then some. And I’ll tell our child, every minute of every day, that I love it. But this isn’t the same thing.” He nodded. “No, he didn’t know me.”
“No, he might not have, but he did know your mom. And from what Noah told me, he was happy for a brief time after he met her. He knows this because he was with him right after he found her. Did you know that she was married at the time?” Noelle shook her head. “Yes, the man she was married to wasn’t a great guy, not abusive, but not very ambitious. And when you were conceived, it was his idea to have you given up or aborted. He had no idea that you weren’t his, Noah said. But once he died, your mother kept you, loving you despite the fact that she was poor and alone.”
“Then she met Howard.” He nodded. “He wasn’t good to her either, was he? He had an affair after my mom married him, and then she died.”
“Joe is going to find out what happened there. She said that she only has to touch Howard to find out what your mom was like. She has it in her head that someplace in the house you lived is something of hers for you. Pictures or something.” Noelle sat up then, excited. “If it’s there, then she can find it.”
“A picture would be wonderful. I don’t remember a thing about her.” He nodded, and when she stood up and began to dress in her blouse, he watched her until she turned to him. “You need to come with me. I have to think what I’m going to do with our money.”
“All right, but if you mean the lottery winnings, that’s all yours to do with as you see fit. I want you to have fun with it.”
He was laughing as they made their way back through the woods. Every time she would find an article of her clothing, he watched her struggle to put it on. Once she found her pants, she had to take off both her boots to pull them on. Elijah had never been so entertained by someone dressing before. By the time they got to the house, he was as excited as she was.
“She’s here. Noah told us that Helenia had arrived earlier this morning.” Noelle wasn’t sure what she was to do now, but she knew that she would do anything to help. When Sterl sat down in the chair by her desk, she wanted to get up and hug him. “I just came from talking to the rest of them and was walking home when I saw you were here. How is it going? Dad said he gave you a desk.”
“They found it in one of the buildings that they were working in. I guess it’s really old.” He nodded. It occurred to her that he was very outwardly calm, but she also knew that he was dealing in his own way. “Elijah said that you were invited to go back to teaching. But that you were going to start in a lower grade this time.”
He got up then, moving around the room, touching some of the things that she’d brought over, other items that had been brought to her by TJ or one of the others. He picked up the box of chalk that she’d purchased on her way in this morning.
“Fifth grade math. I have to figure out how to win against her by hurting her first. I’m not sure I know how to do that.” She nodded, trying to keep up. “What if I can’t do it?”
“Do what, Sterl?” He said teach. “I think you’re going to do very well at it. Most of your students already know you, don’t they? I mean, you’ve grown up in this town.”
“I did. All of us did.” He started drawing on the large chalkboard that had also been unearthed in one of the other buildings. “They don’t use these in the classrooms any more. It’s smartboards. All computer run and much easier. I don’t want to die, Noelle.”
“I don’t want you to either, Sterl. I’ve grown to love you a great deal in the last weeks.” He nodded, still not moving from where he was standing. As he worked on the board, she watched him. “You can win this against her. You know that, don’t you?”