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"When you mentioned Melanie to Micah, you were concentrated solely on the business at hand, as if I was not holding you in my arms. Your single-mindedness can be a bit intimidating, ma petite."

I wasn't sure what I thought about that, but Micah saved me from having to answer. "We can talk to Melanie on one of her breaks between shows tonight, but not before we give you and Nathaniel the attention you deserve."

"How much time do you really have with us before you have to get ready for the meeting?" I asked, wrapping myself around him and finding Nathaniel's arms on the other side, so we entwined him, pressing our naked chests against his.

"I do have to fix my hair."

"Sorry I got you wet."

"It's you we need to get wet," Nathaniel said.

"How much time, Jean-Claude?" Micah asked.

He looked at the other man, and it was almost not friendly. I looked from one to the other of them and felt that weight between them, of two strong, dominant men who would never have chosen each other, yet here they were, domestic partners. This was not the mix of people Jean-Claude had planned to be in his bathtub and headed down the aisle with, but these were the men who had been willing to work their issues and help us work ours. Sometimes you fall in love all at once, and sometimes you fall in love gradually, and sometimes you look up and are surprised as hell at whom you're in love with.

"Forty-five minutes, and then I must ready myself for the meeting."

"A quickie, then," I said.

Jean-Claude smiled. "With all three of us, ma petite, you insult us."

"Fine, a quickie for you," I said, smiling back.

"Maybe enough time for Anita and me to apologize for talking business," Micah said.

"Nathaniel and I eagerly await your apologies."

"Eagerly," Nathaniel said, smiling like the cat that ate the cream, or was hoping to eat it.


JEAN-CLAUDE DID a quick wash of his hair, though we offered to help him. He said that it would be faster if he did it himself, and he was right, but just his turning down extra pampering from us let me know that we weren't the only ones who were eager for each other's company. Micah surprised us by keeping himself and Nathaniel in the bathroom and sending Jean-Claude and me out to the bed. Jean-Claude protested, but Micah said, "You and I talked about more than just my work, Jean-Claude." He'd pushed aside the thick strands of his own wet hair to show two dainty fang marks.

"I'm sorry I missed watching the two of you together," I said.

"It's always so hot when you take blood from Micah," Nathaniel said.

"Thanks, but we did it that way on purpose."

"I don't understand."

"I'm not the only one getting tired of the group activities, no matter how much we love everyone involved," Micah said.

I started to try to pick at the comment, but he held up a hand and said, "We have less than an hour before Jean-Claude has to dress for the meeting. If we divide and conquer, we have enough time to apologize to both Jean-Claude and Nathaniel."

I looked from one man to another, and everyone seemed happy with the arrangement, so I stopped arguing after that. I can be taught.

We spread a body-size towel over the crimson silk sheets, so Jean-Claude could lay all that long black hair out to dry without ruining the silk. The towel was even a red to match the sheets, so he lay back against a perfect background of rich, perfect red, or maybe the perfect part was how his pale skin looked against the color. It brought out the blue undertones in his skin, so that the whiteness of him seemed to have more color, as if he were blooming with health, but I knew that wasn't it; he was blooming with Micah's blood. Vampires usually fed on ordinary humans because there were more of them, but supernatural blood had more kick to it, like a higher-octane fuel. Jean-Claude lay back on the bed damn near shining with the power of feeding on Micah.

"Ma petite, as much as I enjoy you admiring me, we do not have much time."

"The day I don't stop and admire the view before we have sex, either I've lost my mind or I'm dead."

He smiled and held out his hand to me. "Come to me, ma petite."

I climbed up on the bed, taking a good grip of the sheets, because I'd learned that silk is slippery. At least I wasn't wearing hose--that was a combo with these sheets that had sent me sliding off more than once. Once I was safely on the bed, I was kneeling at his feet, with those long legs stretching up and up, toward where he lay nestled against the front of his body. He was already a little happy to see me, but then I was as nude as he was, so apparently he was admiring the view, too.

I loved going down on him before he was completely erect, so I could feel the change in his body as he grew harder. If I took my time and kissed my way up his legs, I'd miss all the softness. I compromised and didn't start at his ankles, but moved up to his lower thigh first. I didn't so much kiss his thigh as brush my lips just above the skin, so that the tiny, pale hairs on them tickled along my lips, and I used my breath to help me caress his skin. It was the lightest of touches, too light for some people to enjoy, but Jean-Claude shivered for me as I worked my way up his thigh toward one of my goals.

By the time I got to the top of his thigh, there wasn't much soft left for me to go down on. He was already long and hard against the front of his body. I licked along the line where his thigh met his hip and had to work hard not to touch anything else.

"You are teasing me now," he said, voice a little breathless.

I drew back enough to look up at his face and saw a need there that I hadn't expected. We were both having sex with each other as part of our poly group, and I knew that we were both having sex with other people when we weren't together, so why the raw need in his face?

I kept eye contact with him as I lowered myself back toward his body and flicked my tongue along the most tender part of him. His eyes closed and a look almost of pain crossed his face. "If I was so slow with you, you would be angry."

He was right, so I licked down the front of him from top to bottom and then slid over the tip of him and down, so that he filled my mouth and then my throat. I came up for air and then moved so that I was up on my knees to get a quick, deep angle so that I could go down as far as we both wanted, but not stay so long that my body fought to breathe too much. I spread his legs so that I could kneel between them and get a better angle to slide my mouth over just the smooth head of him to roll against the roof of my mouth, over and over, and just the sensation of it made me shiver and cry out around him.

He made a wordless, wonderful sound, his upper body coming off the bed as he cried out, "Ma petite!"

I slid my mouth farther down him, so I could feel the slight change of texture where his foreskin covered the shaft; it was just a slight change in texture over the hard eagerness of him. I pushed myself down that length until Jean-Claude cried out again. He sat up and pulled me into his arms. He kissed me so fiercely that I had to open my mouth to his eagerness or one of us would have cut our lips on his fangs. He pressed me back against the bed and I expected him to be on top of me, but he leaned off to one side and it was his fingers that he put between my legs. He slid one finger inside me and said, "So wet just from holding me in your mouth."

"I started to get wet just seeing you lying there on the bed."

He smiled down at me as his fingers found that sweet spot between my legs. I shook my head. "We don't have time; this takes the longest for me." But my voice was already breathy.

"To finish you, no, but to bring you to the edge, yes."

"What?" I asked, and was having trouble focusing on his face.

"One good tease deserves another," he said as he leaned in and kissed me. His fingers kept playing between my legs and there was the beginning of that heavy warmth between my legs, but it was a slow build. I was always a slow build by hand.

He knelt between my legs, spreading my thighs as I'd spread his earlier, one hand playing over that outer sweet spot, and the fingers of the other hand sliding inside me to find ano

ther sweet spot. His long fingers knew just how to curve inside me and find that spot just inside the opening, so that he was working both at the same time, but the inner spot always distracted me from the outer, so that doing both didn't really work for me, and he knew that.

My voice was strained and breathy as I said, "I won't tease you again, if you just stop doing that."

He drew his fingers out and just caressed over that one spot on the outside of my body, and some combination of everything we'd done brought me suddenly. My body bucked under his touch, the orgasm filling my body with heat and pleasure, so that I cried out. He kept playing over that one spot until I was making softer noises, and I tapped on the bed, letting him know I was done and I couldn't talk yet.

He was suddenly above me, while my eyes were still only half focused. I felt him begin to slide himself inside me while I stared up into his eyes. They'd bled to solid blue, gleaming with his own inner fire, as if the night sky could burn with a cold, cobalt blue flame. He held his upper body above me, so that it was halfway between a push-up and a cobra yoga position. He found a rhythm that was just right, not too deep, not too shallow, not too fast or slow, but so that his body rolled over and over the spot that his fingers had already teased to near orgasm. I felt the weight of it begin to build again from his body caressing over and over and over, while I watched his eyes like blue flame above me.

"Let me in, ma petite."

I found enough voice to whisper, "You're in, so in."

"Drop your shields, ma petite. Let me in."

I had a moment of hesitation, and then the next stroke of his body brought me screaming up off the bed, my hands scrambling in the sheets as if the world were flying apart and I needed something to hold on to, and my shields came down with the orgasm. It happens sometimes, but he had asked, and he almost never asked.

The orgasm that had been fading roared back to life, and I was suddenly screaming underneath him and the blue fire in his eyes filled my vision. It was like falling into a soft blue ocean of light, with wave after wave of pleasure spilling over and through me and through him. I could feel Jean-Claude's body inside mine, and then I could feel his body on top of mine, so that I could curve my arms around his shoulders and my fingers found his back, to set my nails into his flesh as I clung to him in the blue light that seemed made of pleasure. I dug my fingers into his back and my legs around his hips to hold myself steady in the ocean of power that was Jean-Claude's eyes.

He cried out, his face buried in my hair, his body convulsing inside mine as he finally lost his rhythm while I was still lost in his eyes, even though my hands and body told me that I was no longer looking into them. His hair was across my face, my body was wrapped around his, but all I could see was soft, warm, blue light, as if happiness had a color and we were swimming in it. I cried out as he thrust himself inside me one more time, and his body convulsed so hard that it fought to escape my arms and legs, as if I were trapping him instead of the other way around.

We lay there relearning how to breathe together. I felt the small sharp pains where her nails had cut my back. I felt his heart fluttering frantically against my body. I felt my body buried deep inside the warm, wet tightness of her. It had been centuries since I'd had a body that could be inside a woman, and then I knew it wasn't my thought, or my body, and for a second I didn't know whose body I was supposed to be in; was I him or her? What the fuck was happening? And that sounded like me, not him.

The floating blue light started to darken, as if night were falling on it, but it wasn't blackness that spilled across the blue; it was brown, as if someone were holding up cognac diamonds to the sun. It dazzled our eyes and splashed dark rainbows through the blue light, and whereas the blue had been only pleasure, there was pain in the whiskey-colored light, pain and pleasure intermingled, and I began to climb back into my body. I knew who I was and that I was not him.

He raised himself enough so we could gaze into each other's eyes again. His were still drowning blue light, and in that light I saw a reflection of a darker light. I had one more dizzying moment of seeing what he saw as he stared down at me. My eyes had bled to solid brown, but with a light sparkling behind them so that it was dark amber fire.

I felt the flash of fear in him, afraid that I'd panic at the power and push him away. I did my best to not be afraid of what I was, what I'd been for a while. I was a living vampire, but it was still a kind of vampire. I just fed on sex and rage instead of blood. I knew what I was, and it wasn't bad. I wasn't evil, and neither was the man in my arms. He felt my fear subside, felt my acceptance, felt the closest thing I had to peace inside me.

"Je t'aime, ma petite," he whispered.

"I love you, too, Jean-Claude."

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