Albina stood at the head of the road that lead to Rahu’s house. She had been dropped off by a carriage driver who was too afraid to take her all the way. She sighed and headed up on her own, unafraid of the man so many in her village feared. When the elders had come to find a young woman to send to the vampire lord, many had argued to keep their daughters. She had been the only one to volunteer her life to protect the village. She understood their fear, but she also believed that the man who lived above the village was not as violent and terrifying as everyone thought. The road was covered in rocks since it was never used so she had to navigate around piles of stones here and there. By the time she made it too the top, she was exhausted and out of breath. The mansion had been made out of the surrounding trees and stones, it was beautiful, a part of nature. On either side of the stairs was a large wolf statue with teeth bared, looking ferocious.
Rahu had not expected to see a person walking up to the front of his house as he past one of the second floor windows and he was even more surprised that it was a woman. He watched her for a few minutes as she stood there staring at his home then decided to go and see what she wanted, maybe frighten her away. He walked downstairs, pulling the door open as her fingers touched the door handle. “Who are you?” He asked.
She was surprised at first and just stood there staring at him. He was handsome and tall, a look of arrogance about him. Dark amber eyes stood out against his pale face and long red hair fell to his waist. He stared right back at her, waiting for her answer. She cleared her throat. “I am Albina, I was sent here as a sacrifice.”
“Or tribute or a bride or whatever you wish me to be. All the village wants is peace and I was sent here in hopes of keeping that peace. I am at your disposal my lord.”
“Your elders sound like a bunch of idiots. Perhaps I should drain you and send you back?”
“If that is what you wish.”
He looked her over. “What’s too keep me from hurting you or raping you?”
“Nothing, but your own honor.” She tucked a few strands of hair behind her ear. “I’m not leaving, do what you will, but I refuse to leave.”
He gave her a wicked grin and grabbed her chin. “What if I used you as food? I haven’t had human blood in a very long time and you smell rather delicious.”
“Whatever you want.” Thunder rumbled in the distance and a mist started falling from the sky. “I’m not afraid.”
He frowned and let go of her chin. “You might as well come in then, I can’t send you back down the mountain if it’s raining, my brother would never stop nagging if I did.”
“thank you” she said and walked in. He hissed at her as he slammed the door but she barely flinched. She just turned and looked at him. Her lack of fear was beyond annoying but he couldn’t drain the life out of her for simply being annoying. At the very least the pest of a woman he had just let into his home was attractive and smelled nice. Instantly knowing someone he didn’t know came in Baldr appeared by them lightening quick, also surprised when Albina didn’t flinch. “who is this?”
“apparently my whatever. The village sent her for me to do what i wish with so I don’t drain them all. I almost sent her back to those bumbling idiots but its raining and I didn’t want to have to listen to you. Do with her what you wish but try to keep her away from me. I have no want for such an annoying human”
“don’t act like a teenage girl on your period brother. Jesus” Bladr said then turned his attention to Albina “you hungry or anything?’
“Not really, what’s your name?”
“Baldr, broody McAssface is Rahu” Albina smiled “do you want me for anything? I belong to you two”
“No, make yourself comfortable and you’re free to go in the morning”
“I can’t go. I told the elders I’d stay here. If you don’t want me here you’ll just have to drain me” Baldr gave her an odd look “what the hell does your village do to women? You’d really let us rape you, drain you or whatever we wanted?”
“for their protection. One for the many. Personally, I don’t believe you guys are as bad as your made out to be. So far I’m seeing I was right”
“even after meeting mr no fun?”
“Hm, well, as i said before, get comfortable”
“I can’t just sit around all day. I can cook and clean.”
Baldr chuckled. “You sure are persistent. Okay you can cook and clean, it’s been a long time since I had a really good home cooked meal anyway. What about you Rahu?”
“Do what you will.” He went upstairs and Baldr snorted in disapproval.
“You’ll have to forgive him, being all dark and brooding was great for being an assassin, but did nothing for his social skills. He’s about as friendly as a hornet.”
“It’s alright, really. So are there any rules I should know about?”
“Not really, I mean Rahu doesn’t really like people in his room, but it’s not a rule you can’t go in there.”
She smiled. “How about you give me a tour then so I know where everything is.”
He held out his arm and she grabbed onto it, liking his friendly and open disposition. She let him pull her along, delighting in the beauty of their home. He made the kitchen their last stop and she was amazed at how much space there was. “Is it to your liking?”
“Yes of course.”
“If you ever need any money for ingredients then please come to me. Rahu would just grumble the whole time.”
“What if I can’t find you?”
He rubbed the back of his neck. “Then I guess you’ll have to go to Rahu, but just make your request quick, be very business like in your approach.”
“Very well, thank you.” She looked around the kitchen. “I guess I should decide what to make for dinner then. Is there anything you or Rahu hate?”
“Not really, food is food.”
Rahu laid on his bed and stared at the ceiling, feeling irritated at how easily that woman got along with his brother. She was stubborn and unafraid, had not even yelped at his show of aggression. The village she came from was full of morons, thinking he and Baldr wanted nothing more than to drain every living person of their blood. All he wanted was peace and quiet, but that had been disrupted by Albina. He sighed and closed his eyes, thinking a short nap would be good and maybe he’d dream of a way to get rid of the beautiful, blue eyed woman who had barged into his life.
“All done.” Albina said as she grabbed a bowl and filled it with rice, broccoli and beef. She handed it to Baldr and he smiled. “I’ll go get your brother.”
“Maybe I should.”
“You’ve been nice enough, I can get him. I’m not worried about his temper.”
“I’m going to be living here unless one of you kills me off so I’ll have to get used to it. Sit and enjoy what I’ve made”
“seriously, he could hurt you in a fit”
“I’m not scared. I’ve already said you two can do what you will to me.”
“and that still baffles me”
“I baffle many people. Enjoy the food, I’ll be back” Albina walked out and to the room Baldr showed her before. This place was breathtaking and she knew it would take her awhile to get used to it. Even the doors were gorgeous, far more gorgeous to look at than any doors should be. Albina knocked loudly until he answered looking thoroughly irritated, even more so than he was earlier “what” he groaned “I cooked for you. Come eat” he sighed “you’re like a mosquito you know that?’
She shrugged “it’s good and if you think it isn’t critique my food all you like. I’ll get better for you” He groaned and slammed his door shut “freaking fine” he huffed all the way to the table and sat down “you showed her where my room was?” he asked his brother angrily. “yes, this food is good so shut up and eat. I’m not sure I ever want her to leave now”
‘can’t be that good” he protested as he snatched up his bowl.
Rahu took a bite and paused at the amazing flavors that washed over his tongue. Both Albina and Baldr were watching him and he quickly chewed what was in his mouth and swallowed it. “It’s alright.” He said under his breath and Albina smiled.
“I’ll take it, alright is better than nothing.”
Baldr just glared at him, but he paid him no mind and continued eating. “So, will you stay here forever Albina, I want to eat your food every day?” Baldr asked, his eyes turning hopeful as his gaze moved to her.
“I already said I’d live here with you two. Besides, two strapping young men like you need good food.”
“You’re the best. Here let me do something for you in return.”
“You don’t have to.”
“Sure I do, because we both know the sourpuss isn’t going to thank you.” Baldr sat his fork down and rubbed his hands together. “How about we eat in a rose garden.”
Rahu groaned. “Really brother? Do you have a crush on her or something?”
“I’m trying to be nice.” He snapped his fingers and the dining room seemed to melt away, only to be replaced by a beautiful rose garden.
Albina’s eyes widened. “Oh wow, how did you do that?”
“It’s my gift, I can cast illusions.”
She smiled happily as she looked around. “So cool, I love roses, especially red ones.” He snapped his fingers again and the smell of roses filled the air. “Thank you so much. What do you do Rahu?”
He got to his feet. “I’m going back upstairs.”
“Wait.” She stood and grabbed his arm, making him glare at her. “Please eat, even if you hate it, don’t go to bed with an empty stomach.” Her gaze never wavered and her grip on his arm never loosened no matter how annoyed he looked. “Please?”
He sighed and dropped back down in his chair. “Fine, I mean if it’ll stop you from badgering me.” Baldr smiled around his fork as he took another bite of the delicious food and Albina sat back down. It was amusing that this woman could so easily challenge his brother and no one had ever been able to get him to do something he didn’t want to.
When his bowl was empty he showed it to Albina “will you let me go in peace now?”
“yes, have a good evening. Just summon me if you need me” He got up wordlessly and left the room. “that actually went really well” Baldr pointed out. “how so?” Albina asked “nobodies ever been able to make him do somthing he didn’t want to do and he’s been alive a long time so feel proud”
“I just want to take care of him. It’s what I was sent here to do”
“You are welcome to take care of us all you want” Albina collected the dishes and set them by the sink so she could wash them. Everything she cooked with she had rinsed right after using it so clean up didn’t last her long. She decided that next she would get to dusting and clean up whatever she found to clean. Baldr guessed if he offered to help Albina would refuse him so he just went to his room to finish a book he had started reading. He honestly wondered just how long she’d really be fine with belonging to vampires, even vampires who didn’t want to own her.
Baldr also wondered if his brother was really going to attempt forcing her to leave when the storm let up. Albina didn’t get to finish dusting before she tired and needed to go to bed. She decided she would simply resume right after breakfast in the morning. Baldr had shown her a room she could sleep in for the night so she returned to it and settled in for bed.
The storm got worse during the night, the sound of wind and rain slamming against the side of the house woke Albina. She sat up and swung her legs over the edge of the bed, feeling thirsty. Her bare feet made no sound as she walked down the hall and she glanced at Rahu’s door as she passed it and made her way downstairs. She wondered what had made him into the moody, brooding adult he was. Rahu could hear her, had not fallen asleep after dinner even though he had tried. He slipped out of bed, thinking to take this opportunity to scare her. He stalked her downstairs, a flash of lightening revealing her lithe form in the darkness. She walked into the kitchen, grabbing a glass from one of the cabinets and filling it with water.
He was behind her in the blink of an eye, his hand going around her throat and startling her so she dropped her glass. He caught it and sat it in the sink, not wanting to wake Baldr. “If you move, I’ll rip your throat out.” He whispered in her ear and she seemed to relax.
“It’s just you, that’s good.” Her voice was warm, soft even.
“Do you have so little self preservation? I could kill you so easily, could snap your neck before you even had time to blink.”
“Then do it, kill me.”
He growled and spun her around, his hand still gripping her throat. “You’re really irritating, infuriating actually.” He leaned in, inhaling her scent. She smelled sweet and her warmth swept over him, heating his body. “It’s been a long time since I had someone as delicious as you.” His face was so close to hers, he could feel her breath against his lips.
“Do you want a taste then?”
He glared at her. “To let someone ravish you simply for the sake of your village is stupid.”
She brought her hand up, grabbing his wrist and letting her thumb drift slowly back and forth over his skin. “Wouldn’t you sacrifice everything to protect your brother? I have a family, a mother and a brother of my own. I would do anything to protect them.”
Her gentle touch sent a tingle up his arm and he quickly let her go. “You really are an irritating woman.” She stepped closer and his heart actually stuttered in his chest as she reached up and cupped his cheek. “Don’t touch me.”
“Or what, you’ll hurt me? Then hurt me, punish me, dominate me. Do whatever it is you need to do to relieve your frustration, but I won’t leave.”
He batted her hand away. “Just get to bed.” He turned from her, feeling irritated that she had managed to stir him up. He didn’t understand how one little woman could be so brave.
Albino got herself a little more water and absolutely unbothered by what just happened went straight to bed. She knew he wouldn’t kill, beat or rape her. He might take her blood but that was somthing she was prepared for if that was required of her. As she lay under the thick covers the raging storm outside made it hard to fall back asleep but eventually she was able to once again get lost in her dreams. The next morning Albina looked through the draws of the dresser in her room but didn’t find anything she could change into. She sighed and decided to ask for materials to make clothes as the men ate their breakfast. Surely he had a needle and some fabric he didn’t mind sparing.
With that in mind she went downstairs to make Cherry Coconut Breakfast Bars. Last night she had noticed they had all she needed to prepare it. Albina hummed as she worked. It was just as she was sliding them into the oven that Baldr asked “what’re you making?”
“Cherry Coconut Breakfast Bars”
“good thing you two keep plenty of food on hand”
“Yeah, we’re sucky cooks and didn’t use them nearly as well as you are though”
“I’ll have to teach you how to make s few things, you never know when I might catch a cold or get the flu.”
He frowned. “I hope that never happens, but if it does I’ll do my best to cook for you.”
“You’re too sweet. Oh, I was wondering if maybe I could borrow a needle and fabric to make me some clothes.”
“No way, I’ll just go with you into town and you can buy what you want.”
“Who’s going into town?” Rahu’s voice sounded from the kitchen doorway and they both turned to see him leaning against the door frame, looking grumpy and tired. Albina couldn’t help but smile and instantly covered her mouth. With his hair in such a messy state and that look on his face, he looked like a grumpy little boy.
“We are, she needs clothes.” Baldr replied.
“Why don’t you come with us.” Albina offered and he crossed his arms.
“What makes you think I want to?”
“I bet you have good taste in clothes, you could help me pick something out. I’ll wear whatever you want.”
Rahu glanced at Baldr who was staring at him, his eyes asking him to just be nice this one time. He made a huffing sound then left and came back dressed, his hair pulled back. “If it will stop your nagging.”
“Thank you.” She walked over and kissed his cheek then went happily back to the oven. “These should be done soon, you’ll have one right Rahu?”
He sat down, his arms and legs crossed. “Might as well.” His heart was beating faster than he liked and he did his best to remain cool and uncaring. When the breakfast bars were ready, she gave them one each since they were best when warm.
“My goodness Albina, these are so amazing. Marry me.” Baldr said with a joking grin.
“Well of course, since you asked so nicely.” They both laughed and Rahu felt a sudden stab of jealousy. He didn’t understand it, but he didn’t like her being so friendly with Baldr. He shoved down the emotion, keeping to himself as he ate.
“So can you go out in the sun then?” Albina asked.
“Yeah, but we can get quite the sun burn if we’re not careful.” Baldr explained.
“So what do you do?”
“We both have parasols, I know that might seem a bit girly, but it keeps us from burning.”
“Not at all, whatever keeps you from being hurt is fine with me.” She took a bite of her food. “Do you think maybe we could stop and see my mother and brother? My mom knows I can take car of myself, but my brother worries too much. I’d like to show him I haven’t been murdered.”
“That’s a fair request. What do you think brother?”
“Maybe she’ll stay home if she sees how upset her brother is.”
Baldr kicked his brother’s seat. “Don’t be so negative.”
“If it’s too much trouble, I can see them another time.”
“Fine, we’ll take you.” Rahu looked at her and she smiled warmly back. Her eyes lit up, reminding him of bright sapphire stones. He pulled his gaze away before he got lost in her. He didn’t know what was wrong with him and he didn’t like it.
Baldr was surprised at how his brother said she might stay home. It sounded like somthing he didn’t want rather than somthing he did. Baldr tuned into his brothers heartbeat and flashed a knowing smile when he heards it rythm. Rahu could have set Baldr on fire with his return gaze. His brother was on to how this woman made him feel and it pissed him off. After breakfast Albina tried to wash her dishes but Baldr stopped her “later, we need to go shopping”
“some of this will be impossible if I don’t atleast put some water in it. Just let me do that real quick please” he let her go “okay” Albina filled them with water then put on her shoes. Baldr and Rahu already had their parasols in hand and were ready for her. She gave them an electrifying smile and they set out. “you two are probably going to scare the life out of some people going into town” she said and Rahu shrugged ‘we are used to it. People assume we’re out to kill them”
“Well just stick close to me, I won’t let them hurt you.”
“We don’t need your protection.” Rahu interjected.
“She’s trying to help Rahu, don’t be such an ass.”
Rahu rolled his eyes and Albina grabbed his hand as well as Baldr’s. “I thought I said…”
“It’ll make you look nicer.”
“Maybe I don’t want to look…”
“If you look less menacing people will stop worrying about you and the less they worry, the less likely they are to send people to your house. I would really hate for them to hire a vampire hunter.”
“I’m not afraid of some hunter.”
Albina looked up at him, her beautiful blue eyes capturing his amber ones. “I know, but I would hate for you to get hurt.”
He pulled his eyes away. “I wouldn’t let myself get hurt.”
Baldr chuckled. “Don’t worry about us Albina, Rahu’s assassin’s training and my illusions will keep us safe.”
“Still, just stay with me and try not to glare so much Rahu, it makes you look like a feral dog.”
Now that Baldr was paying attention to his brother he noticed Rahu fight down a blush at her words. He couldn’t help but smile again. His brother, who was normally as cuddly as sandpaper, was actually softening a bit over this woman. It still would probably be preferable to hug a cactus instead of coming anywhere near Rahu but maybe with time Albina could drain him of his venom, even if just enough to make being around him pleasant. The walk to town was uneventful and strangely silent. Normally she could hear animals but none seemed to be about. “it’s so odd not to hear any chirping or any sort of animal noise atall really.” Albina pointed out and Baldr chuckled “this guy even puts off animals. It’s that grump aura”
“I don’t feel that”
“I’ve already said you’re an odd one Albina”
“We’re all a little odd.” The moment they walked into town, time seemed to stop. Everyone on the street froze, all eyes turning to Albina and the two vampire men. Many of them took trembling steps back, some ran and others just followed them with their eyes and whispered among each other. To Rahu it was annoying and he found himself glaring at a few people.
“They really are scared of us.” Baldr said under his breath.
“Just keep walking like everything is normal.” Albina said, smiling at the villagers as they passed by. She took them directly to one of the clothing stores, making its patrons scuttle out and the owner turn pale. “Hello Mrs. Jovia.” Albina said as she let go of her companion’s hands.
She smiled. “Who else would it be? This is Rahu and Baldr, they brought me down to buy me some clothes.”
“But I thought…we all thought…”
“We’re just going to have a quick look around okay then we’ll be out of your hair so people can come back in.”
The woman said nothing more and Baldr smiled as he followed Albina while Rahu just gave the woman a look that sent a shiver up her spine. “So what colors do you like?” Baldr asked.
“I’ll wear whatever, you two just pick out what you think will look good on me and I’ll wear it.”
“Are you sure, I mean you do have a choice.”
She waved a hand. “Really, anything is fine. Helping my mother with midwifery taught me not to be so picky about my clothes, especially when childbirth can get so messy.”
“You said you liked red roses.” Rahu said as he went through the clothes. “I want you to wear red.”
Albina smiled, her eyes lighting up as they always did. “I didn’t think you were actually paying attention.”
“Baldr made it a point to put red ones into his illusion after you said you liked them.”
“Would you like me to hypnotize you and make you do something embarrassing Baldr, because I am always ready to do so.”
Baldr laughed. “Alright, just stop glaring. I’m surprised your face isn’t stuck in a permanent scowl.”
They bought her mostly red clothes but also made sure to get ones that brought out her eyes. They of course already popped against her fair skin and blonde hair but blue looked ravishing on her. Rahu purchased what they picked out much to the owners relief. They hadn’t left her store a moment too soon for her tastes. Refusing any protest from Albina, Rahu carried everything as they walked to visit Albinas family. Their knocks were quickly answered when they arrived at the place she called home before she gave herself to the vampires. It tugged at her heart to be here but she felt better knowing the men she had given herself to would allow her to come visit them from time to time if she wanted.
When Aine answered she was shocked and wrapped her daughter in a hug “Oh baby, oh my goodness. What’re you doing here?”
“they bought me some clothes and said I could come see you guys. Is Kamba home?”
“Kamba! Hurry!” her mother called, fearing her daughter might not be permitted much time to see them. “can you come in?” she asked and Albina nodded. They all walked in and soon she was tackled with a hug from her brother “I havent been gone long” Albina said through a giggle. He held tighter “how are you here?”
“they said I could come see you guys.”
“For how long?’ She looked at Rahu and Baldr for an answer and Baldr said ‘we’ll stay a few hours. Honestly we told her she could come home but she wont leave. Not that we don’t like having her there but it wasn’t necessary to put her at our mercy to protect your village. We’re not violent.”
“She insisted she go. When the elders came asking for young, virgin women many of us were outraged, fathers and brothers refused, but my Albina stepped forward and offered herself.” Aine kissed her daughter’s forehead. “My brave little girl, always putting herself first.”
“It was stupid.” Kamba added.
“Don’t say such selfish things.” Albina reprimanded. “The other women were terrified, they were crying and begging, I couldn’t let them be taken. Besides, I was right anyway, these two are not as bad as they seem. Baldr is sweet beyond words and Rahu is incredibly gentle in spite of his projected coldness.” Her voice softened a fraction when she spoke of Rahu and it did not go unnoticed.
“Sorry sister, it’s just I thought for sure they’d kill you. I can’t lose you.”
She patted his head. “I know, but never judge a person by rumors.”
“Since you’re here how about we make a big batch of cookies.” Aine suggested.
“Good idea, Rahu can help us.”
His eyes jumped to her smiling face. She always smiled, it was something he had realized and it never seemed to falter. He could be as cruel as he wanted, glare at her, even put her down and she would never stop smiling. She had even called him gentle in spite of his bad attitude. “Fine.” Was all he could manage and she leaned over and kissed his cheek for the second time. It made his heart thunder in his chest and a warmth spread through him. He nearly reached for her, nearly pulled her back and claimed her lips with his own. He was so shocked by the urge that he took a step back. He told himself it was just the smell of her blood and the enticing warmth her body offered.
“You okay?” She reached out and touched his chest, concern etched on her beautiful face.
“I’m a vampire, of course I’m alright” He saw an almost humorous look in her eyes “just because you’re a vampire, doesn’t mean you’re always okay” he wasn’t sure how to react so he was grateful he didn’t have to. She just took his hand and pulled him into the kitchen. Baldr smiled as Kamaba sat next to him. Baldr could feel he still hated this situation so Baldr spoke “she really can come home if and when she chooses to. We aren’t forcing her to stay or forcing anything on her. She hasn’t been harmed”
“yeah but she said she’d stay there so shes going to. Even if you guys start torturing her, hard head will stay and just let anything befall her. You two are obviously nice but I can’t help but stress. She is truly yours to do whatever with and thats terrifying to me”
“I can understand but know this” Baldr dropped his voice to the lowest whisper he knew humans could still hear “I know my brother and I know he’d never hurt your sister. He’s very fond of her, more fond than I’ve seen him of anybody before. Just don’t tell him I said so”
“He’s about as sweet and cuddly as a nest full of pissed off hornets, that being said, your sister’s stubbornness and understanding are wearing away his roughness. Let’s put it this way, if I had asked him to make cookies he would have had me walking around clucking like a hen.”
Albina laughed at Rahu when he got a bit of flour on his nose. He simply stated that it had been centuries since he had made cookies and with a warm smile, she wiped the flour from his nose. It wasn’t long before they had the first batch of cookies in the oven and Albina made a pitcher of lemonade while Aine went to visit with Baldr. “Do you and your mother always do so much for guests?” Rahu asked as he stood behind her.
“Yeah, for friends, new neighbors, people we want to be friends with, and grouches like you.” She teased as she turned to look at him. “You going to threaten me again or call me annoying for teasing you?”
“Would it do any good, maybe get you to stay away?”
“Nope, I’d just follow you home.”
He gave a breathy laugh. “Just like a stray pup.”
“A cute stray pup.” He rolled his eyes and she laughed. “That’s more like it, wouldn’t want people to think you have the ability to tease someone.”
He grabbed her chin. “You have a very smart mouth, it may just be your downfall.” She honestly delighted in his touch and moved closer to him. He would have stepped away, but he was trapped by the small island. She wrapped her arms around his waist and rested er head on his chest, making his heart do a little somersault. “What are you doing?”
“Giving you a hug. Thank you for coming with me, for buying me clothes, and for making cookies with me.”
“Well, if I had not then…”
“I wouldn’t have stopped bothering you?” She smiled up at him.
“this is true, I really wanted to see my family.”
“you could stay you know” he half heartedly mentioned. He didn’t want her to go even less than Baldr did at this point. “I know but the villagers will feel safe if I’m there with you guys and you two need decent meals. Not to mention you need someone to curb your attitude”
“You’ll be doing nothing of the sort” he said with slight irritation in his voice. She laughed into his chest and his heart flipped again. “well, I’m staying there. I told the elders I would so I’m at your mercy until I die” That reminder saddened him. She was only his because of a promise, not because she wanted to be his. All the same she was coming home with him and though he wouldn’t admit it it made him happy.
The timer for the cookies went off and Albina took them out, letting them cool slightly before removing them from the cookie sheet and putting them on a plate. She put the second batch in then grabbed the plate and took it into the living room. She was happy to see that her family had seemed to relax around Baldr which wasn’t hard when he was so friendly and was using his illusion skills to turn their living room into different locations. She sat the plate on the coffee table then went back into the kitchen and poured lemonade into glasses. “Rahu, will you help me?”
“If I must.” He carried three of the glasses while she took two and they sat down in the living room with her family and Baldr. She sat between the two vampires, showing her mother and brother that she was completely comfortable being close to them. They talked happily with each other, Rahu saying little, but trying to answer what questions he could. They only paused when Albina jumped up to take the cookies out and put the last batch in.
“So, are we allowed to come and visit you?” Kamba asked.
“I don’t see why not.” She looked at Rahu, knowing he would have to give his assent since it was his house.
“Do as you like.” He said and she smiled happily. They stayed for lunch and at the end of their visit, Kamba didn’t want her to go even though he had been reassured by Baldr she would be okay. Aine packed them some cookies in a container and Albina hugged both of them before following Rahu and Baldr out the door.
“Are you sure you don’t want to stay?” Baldr asked.
“I’m sure, Kamba will get used to me living with you two. It’ll just take time.” She took their hands, giving a sigh of contentment as they walked out of town. When they got home she put the cookies away in the kitchen and took the bags of clothes from Rahu so she could put them away.
Rahu watched as she went upstairs and had the urge to follow her, but stayed back. Baldr gave him a shove from behind and he turned, glaring at his brother. “What?”
“Just go up there, you like her, you want her, so go up there and stop being such a pansy.”
“Shut up, what do you know?”
“I can hear the way she makes your heart race, I can see how affectionately you have begun to look at her. She’s going to be here for awhile, so go up there and show her how you feel because god knows you suck at talking.”
He sighed. “What would be the point, she’s only here out of an obligation.”
“You are entirely too slow, now go.”
“Fine you incessant nag.” He turned from his brother and headed upstairs, going straight to Albina’s room. He knocked on the door and heard her voice tell him to come in. She smiled when she saw it was him and he felt it like a punch in the gut.
“Did I forget something?” She asked as he crossed the room.
He shook his head as he reached out, his fingers slipping around the nape of her neck. “Just shut up and listen.” He leaned in and pressed his lips against hers, feeling instantly weak. His hand slipped to her throat and he pressed her against the wall.
“Come to devour me at last?” She said softly when he parted their lips.
“Only if you wish to be devoured.” He whispered back.
“Haven’t I told you this whole time I am yours?”
“I don’t want you to give yourself to me because you feel obligated. I want you to love me Albina, I want you to crave me the way I am craving you. You have done something to me, wiggled your way right into my heart with your stubbornness and honesty. Damn pushy woman, making me fall for you.”
“It’s not obligation. I can see such a good man in you and I want to spend what life I do have loving you in all the ways you haven’t before. I want the years you get to spend with me to always be in your head as some of your best” Rahu kissed her again, this time hungrily. He had been craving this so much he had very little control over himself. “I love you, you infuriating, beutiful creature”
“I love you too.”
“This isn’t your room anylonger” he said and picked her dresser up. She followed him as he set it in his bedroom “you’re sleeping with me tonight” Albina smiled and hugged him from behind “I’d love nothing more. It’s sweet you want me in here”
“I’m not sweet”
“Yes you are” he groaned and slammed her into the bed so he could kiss her again. Pressed into the mattress with his lips devouring hers felt like heaven to Albina. She could easily spend her days just like this with her soft centered vampire.