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Ruth & Chthon

Chapter One

Andras was leading a new member of the sex trade into a graveyard to show him the ropes on resurrections. These demons belonged to a group that resurrected dead human women to sell them as sex slaves and toys to other demons in many dimensions. They’d choose human women who had been dead for at least two hundred years to make sure they had noone alive that would care enough to save them or that they could run to. Having girls with no more living relatives who would know them made it easier to make them submissive and serve whoever bought them.

“Read the headstones carefully. This ones date tells us she’s been dead for about 300 or 400 years. My math isn’t so good but I know for a fact she fits the bill on who to ressurect. This is a very sensitive thing. One miss step or wrong spoken word and we’ll have a zombie, not a human girl. Our clients don’t want zombies they want somthing that will really feel the torture they are put through you understand me?”

“Yes”

“Good, I will be of no use to you once I resurrect her. She will be unconscious. Your only job is to spread that pink bottle of fluid over her bones and chant those five sentences you’ve been practicing for three years. This is your life understand me? I can only do this once every four months and that bottle you have in your hands is hard stuff to make so if you give us a zombie it’ll be your head. Once the stuff is over her bones and you’ve chanted you say her name which seems to be Ruth and the age we want her. The boss has ordered an eighteen year old. So just say Ruth 18 and bam her soul will come back and her body will look like what she did at 18. Tie her up quickly because she’ll have all of her memories up until death and will be freaked out just by the fact she’s living again. If she gets away from you you are also dead. You understand me?”

“Yes sir”

“Once all is taken care of Tatern and Luvits will come nad make this grave look untouched. They are the ones who dug it up for us.” Assaku nodded and Andras began his chant. When he was doen the man fell to his knees and Assaku quickly did as he had been taught to do and pryed he made her human and not a zombie. It was stressful knowing that one mistake would ruin this ritual. To his relief it worked and he tied her up before her eyes were even open then whispered sleep into her ear to make her pass out until she was presented to their leader.

Ruth felt cold. She was breathing, her heart was beating. It was impossible. She opened her eyes, blinking rapidly as light filled them. She squirmed, finding herself bound. She was alive. The last thing she remembered was Chthon crying, his arms wrapped tightly around her as he sobbed in agony. She had chosen to stay a human, had left him. She remembered feeling such sorrow as she drifted away, wishing she could go back and change her mind. She had loved him with everything she was. She still loved him.

“Hello.” she whispered. Her voice was raspy from not being used for so long. She cleared her throat. “Hello, is anyone there.” She said louder.

She heard footsteps and a face suddenly hovered into view. “You’re awake, that’s good. How do you feel?” The demon asked.

“I need to find my husband. Can you please untie me?”

“I’m afraid I can’t do that Ruth. You belong to us now.”

“Please, let me go.” She just wanted to leave, to find the love of her life and apologize for leaving him.

“Assaku, stop talking to the merchandise. These women like to try and manipulate you.” Another demon’s face came into view and gripped her hair, tipping her head back to look at her. “You’ll fetch a good price.” She spit in his face and he slapped her. “Stop resisting. I don’t want to mark you and get less money than you’re worth.”

“My god, you’re sex traders. Let me go you son of a bitch.” He just laughed and dropped her back to the floor.

“Come on Assaku, let her panic and squirm. We need to get going before someone shows up.”

“Yes sir.”

Chthon took a deep breath and started to the graveyard where his Ruth had been buried. Every time he visited this place, his heart broke more and more. He knew soon there would be nothing left and he would be a hollow husk of a man. He already felt the knot rising in his throat as her beautiful face flashed before him. She had been so loving and devoted. Even when old age crept up on her, it had not slowed her one bit. She had grown more beautiful with each passing moment. Her death had ripped out a huge chunk of his heart. What was left was only there because of his family. He finally made his way to her grave and a familiar scent tickled his nose. He had always been able to smell her, even buried deep in the ground, but it had never been this strong before.

“Ruth.” He whispered her name, his heart stuttering in his chest. “It can’t be. Have I finally lost my mind?” He dropped down in the dirt. The earth was loose like it had been the day she was buried.

Chthon grew enraged and made the dirt covering her coffin fly into the air. He opened it up and her bones were gone. “Sombody has dared to disturb my wifes remains” he growled as his blood began to boil. He jumped out of the hole and took in the air. It smelled like much more than remains. Her scent was as if she was living but Chthon knew that wasn’t possible and probably just his heart deceiving him because it longed for her so deeply to this day. He would find whatever despicable demon had the audacity to bother his wifes resting and torture them to death before putting her bones back where they belonged.

A large demon who wasn’t in a human form approached Ruth who had been chained now that she was in the dungeon. He took her off the wall and held her up by her hair “You’re a sexy little thing. My men did good work. I’m going to show you off to some potential buyers so be a good little girl so we wont need to hurt you”

“fuck you!” Ruth¬†screamed and the man laughed. “It’s only going to make it worse for you to have that attitude. Some of the men will like it and you’ll fetch a higher price from them. Breaking a human girl is so much fun. To watch their fight slowly drift from their eyes. Especially ones as beautiful as yours Ruth.”

“If my husband is still living he’ll come for me. He’ll find out what you’ve done” The demon laughed again “You are well over 300 years old my dear. Knowing Andras math probably closer to 500 years. Your husband isn’t living, I can assure you that.”

“He was or is a demon you pig! He very well may be!”

“By now he probably has another family, have you considered that?” Ruths heart almost stopped. She didn’t know it had been that long. Chthon was handsome and sweet. She almost felt like crying. She may not even have the chance to apologize and tell him how badly she regretted her choice once it sank in that she was really going to be leaving him. She wouldnt have the chance to tell them she regretted it for years before her death but knew she was too old to live through the change so just didn’t tell him.

He dragged her out of the dungeon and up a flight of stairs. She didn’t care if Chthon had a new family, he had every right to be happy. She knew he would always love her. She would live to see him again or she would die trying. Her heart and body were his alone, she would not allow these monsters to rape her. The demon pulled her into a room where there were other men talking. There were at least twenty of them, all demons.

“This is our first piece. Her name is Ruth, she is eighteen years old, very spirited and beautiful.” He forced her to stand in the middle of the room. “Please feel free to examine her.”

The others moved around her, touching her skin and hair. One of them pulled off what was left of her clothes. She stared straight ahead, unwilling to give them the satisfaction of hearing her cry. They groped her, their touch disgusting her. She made electricity radiate out of her body and shock them. They jumped back, some of them cursing at her, but a couple of them excited. The big demon gripped the back of her neck, squeezing so she winced in pain. She stayed on her feet, unwilling to be brought to her knees. She would not submit to them.

Chthon flew through the air, following his beloved’s scent. He wanted her back so bad, wanted to hold and kiss her and make love to her. He missed her eyes and her voice and the way she accepted his aggressive nature. He would give anything to feel her pressed against him, warm and alive. The other scents that had surrounded her grave had been those of demons. When he found them, he would force them to tell him where Ruth was. His face would be the last thing they would see before they slipped away.

“This is the finest girl you’ve trotted out yet Botis. I’ll pay you twenty million gold for her.” Said the demon that had the near neck shattering grip on her. “Well I’ll pay fifty million Botis!” Quite a few of the demons started bickering over her. It was horrid and repulsive being shown like she was just some item. She thought of Chthon to help her not cry. She pictured all their good times and now was actually hoping he had found a family to be with and her presence back on earth wouldn’t make him too miserable if he was happy with a new bride. Chthon had been the most amazing husband she could have dreamed of. Even when he lost his temper he was a wonderful man. She longed to be with him, for him to touch her and look at her like he did when she was alive the first time.

She had to find him to see. If he wasn’t with anyone she would have to beg him to take her back. She reverted back to their past life because she was about to make herself cry with thoughts of what may be now all these years later. She was woken from her thoughts when the demon that brought her up roared loudly “order!” All demons fell silent “I can’t hear. I will hold a silent auction for Ruth after the other girls are sold if it’s going to get this out of hand. Bune! Take her back to the dungeon until she can be properly bid on later. Who knew we had fetched such a prize.” Bune grabbed Ruth by the hair which seemed to just be the way these demons handled what they considered their property.

He pressed Ruth hard into the cold, damp wall and chained her back to it. He grabbed another girl and drug her up the stairs for the demons to see and bid on. Ruth yanked and jerked against the chains that steadily cut deeper into her skin. It stung but she couldn’t just sit there, couldn’t just wait for them to come back for her. Ruth screamed in her frustration and a girl to her left said “Calm down, I know this is scary but fighting like you are is only going to make them hurt you really badly. I’ve been bought and returned a few times.”

“I will never stop fighting no matter what they do to me. They can beat me, torture me, and rape me, but I will never stop fighting. I will get back to the one I love or I will die.” She replied, her voice full of fire.

“Why fight for someone who is long gone?”

“Because he would fight for me. He walk through fire and brimstone to save me. He fears nothing and neither will I.”

“We all say we will fight, but sooner or later they break you.”

“They will never break my spirit.”

Chthon tracked the grave robbers to a city six hours from Tresnia. He followed their scent to a pub. It was very strong. He walked through the door, the darkness of his aura silencing the room. He looked over the faces of the patrons, his eyes finally settling on two men. He crossed the room and the younger of the two jumped up, tripping over his chair in his panic. He grabbed the older man by the throat and pulled him up. “Where is she?” He growled, his eyes brimming with barely restrained rage.

“Chthon, wh…what are you doing here?” He asked, his voice shaking.

“Where is she? Tell me now.”

“What are you talking about?”

He grabbed the younger man by his hair and pulled them both outside. He took to the air, taking them far outside the city. He threw them both on the ground, snapping his fingers so their lungs filled with water. It leaked from their noses and mouths as they clutched at their throats and writhed on the ground. Their lips turned blue and he snapped his fingers again, leaving them gasping. “You dug her up, you took her bones. I want them back right now.” They both tried to run, but he froze them. “Where is she?” When neither of them said anything he punched Andras in the face, breaking his nose and knocking out some of his teeth. “If you don’t tell me I will skin you alive and leave you out here for the animals to eat.”

“We resurrected her.” Assaku said, terrified out of his mind by this demon.

“Shut up Assaku.” Andras commanded and Chthon grabbed him by his throat, squeezing until all air was cut off.

“Speak boy.”

“I didn’t want to I swear, she was so scared and pretty. We…we gave her to our master. He sells the resurrected girls to other demons as slaves. His name is Botis and we took her through a gate into his domain. Please don’t kill me, please.”

“what do you mean you resurrected her?”

“I…it takes a lot of training to do but we bring human girls back to life. We make their organs and skin come back. Even their soul and memories return…..how she is now is like she never died except we made her body start at eighteen. She ha..has memories up until death but her body resembles what she looked like at 18”

“Take me to my wife now.”

“She may already be sold”

“Just fucking take me to where Botis is now!” The other man finally quit moving as Chthon crushed his throat. Assaku grew even more terrfied. “Ok, I…I…I need to get somthing out of his pocket to go there…”

“Get it” Chthon growled now making Assaku shake almost violently. Assaku shakily rummaged through his dead mentors pockets and pulle dout a stone. “Th this is a key to get through Botis’s ga ga gate. P please don’t kill me. You need me to get there and use this.”

“You will deeply regret this if you aren’t being honest with me” Chthons voice was barely a voice atall. “I woulnd’t lie to you…I know who you are…if we we woulddd have known”

“shut up you disgusting worm! Do not speak unless spoken to! Take me now!” Bune came up and down the stairs obviously selling off all the girls but two and the girl that had spoken with her. “are we all going up for auction.” Ruth asked Rose. Bune said “No just you. The customers tonight didn’t want the other girls. You will be the only one we auction” Bune put a collar around Ruth “if you try and use any magic it will only hit you understand? Go ahead and try if you want to use magic while this collar is on. I’m being nice by warning you.” Ruth looked at him defiantly as he took her off the wall and cuffed her hands. He grabbed the chain to her collar and tried to make her walk but Ruth sat on the ground. “fine I’ll drag you then you stupid foolish brat!” He drug Ruth up the stairs as she pulled and jerked against the collar.

Rose just shook her head. She had never seen a girl fight this much from the start but knew Ruth would break like all the others. It was only a matter of time before she realized it was easier just to submit. The demons in the auction hall grew more arroused as they saw Ruth struggle and scream profanities. Botis was excited. He was expecting to make more than he ever had on this woman.

She listened to Botis calling out prices. Each demon raised his hand, their eyes never leaving her. Her price finally got high enough that there were only two demons left. The one who had grabbed her neck so violently that it bruised eyed her hungrily. She cringed at the thought of him touching her. She hoped Chthon still visited her grave and that he wouldn’t be so blinded by his grief that he wouldn’t notice she was gone.

Chthon pushed Assaku in front of him, the young man shaking as he lead him on. They came to a small pond and Assaku dipped the stone in the placid water. It started to swirl up, standing flat before them like a mirror. He shoved Assaku through first before stepping in. He felt a wrenching sensation in his chest as he stepped into another world. The sky was obscured with grey clouds and rain fell on them in cold sheets. He commanded it to stop.

“Which way?” He asked angrily.

“It’s a days run South.” Assaku said shakily.

“We are going to cut that time in half and if you dare betray me in any way, I will hunt you down and make you wish your father had strangled you at birth.”

“I understand. I don’t want to die.”

“Die? No, death is to good for scum like you. You will suffer for an eternity.”

The man who had grabbed her won. He smiled triumphantly and crossed the room, grabbing her chain. “We’re going to have fun.”

“You may take your prize after you have paid.” Botis said.

“Of course. Please have her cleaned and taken to my room.”

Bune pulled her by her chain, taking her to another room where young women were waiting with buckets of water and rags. She could tell by the lifelessness in their eyes that they had been broken long ago. Bune forced her to stand in the middle of the room then looped her chain onto a hook in the ceiling. The women scrubbed her clean, making sure every speck of dirt was gone before rinsing her and drying her. Bune grabbed her chain and dragged her down the hall and then up a flight of stairs to the guest wing. He forced her into a room and chained her to the bed.

“Remember what I told you about the collar. You could seriously injure yourself and we don’t give refunds.”

“You heartless bastard.”

“We are demons, it is who we are.”

“Chthon’s not. He’s loving and kind.”

“What did you say? What was that name?”

“Chthon, he is…was my husband.” Bune felt his heart slam fearfully against his chest. He needed to talk to Botis.

Bune ran out of the room to where Botis accepted payment for his girls. He ran as fast as his feet could carry him. Chthon was still very much alive and it was no secret how much he still loved Ruth to this day. He had to tell his boss what Ruth this was and hopefully correct things before Chthon found out. Botis was a proud and overly confident man so Bune feared he may not release Ruth and refund the money. If his boss wouldn’t let Ruth free Bune planned on getting as far away from this building as possible before Chthon savagely killed everyone inside.

“Botis!” Bune screamed as he flung open the door. Cain had just finished paying for Ruth and didn’t appreciate the interruption. “There better not be a problem with the girl Bune.”

“I’m sorry sir but there is. She’s Chthons Ruth sir”

“she’s lieing” Botis snapped. “I don’t think so sir. Besides her own tombstone said her names Ruth”

“While she was alive she probably heard about those two and is using that to trick you. Everyone knows the power of Chthon. Don’t be fooled by that bitchs lies! Besides I’ve been paid. Do you feel she’s really Chthons Ruth Cain?”

“I doubt a demon such as Chthon could love such a wild and untamed woman. She’s a liar and you’re gullible Bune. Get out of the way” Bune ran out of the room and away from the building to go home. He wasn’t willing to take the risk of Chthons wrath when he saw her chained to a bed and she told him of how she had been treated. Bune didn’t care if he got fired and it wasn’t really that Ruth but fired was much better than tortured and dead. Ruth was crying while the demon wasn’t there yet to get it out of her system. She was singing a song Chthon had made up just for her on their twentieth anniversary. He had sung it to her almost every night after the first time he sang it.

She actually smiled thinking about that day. It was her favorite anniversary. Chthon made every one special but that one was extra special. The tears stopped as she filled her head with happy moments with her husband. “so you sing for me?” Cains voice brought her back to the situation she was in.”

“I would never sing for you. Thats a song my husband sang to me when I was alive the first time”

“stop lieing”

“I would never lie about my husband. I still love him even now.”

“You are far to headstrong for the Chthon I know. He’s ruthless and bad tempered. Someone like you would surely be silence by him.”

“He still lives, thank heavens.”

“Even if you are his Ruth, he will never find you. You belong to me now.” He tangled his fingers in her hair and kissed her. He shoved his tongue into her mouth and she bit him, drawing blood. He pulled back and slapped her. “You stupid bitch.”

“Fuck you. Go die somewhere.”

Chthon raced through the woods, beastly keeping pace with Assaku. The younger demon was willing to do anything to stay alive. He knew Ruth would fight to her last breath and feared what was being done to her. There was no telling who had purchased her. Assaku came to a stop at the edge of the woods and glanced fearfully back at Chthon.

“Why are we stopping?” He said, his hand balling into a fist.

“There is a bridge we have to cross, but it is guarded by a hydra. If it sees you then it will attack and kill us both.”

“Coward.” He shoved him out of the way and stepped out of the woods, walking confidently to the bridge. The ground shook beneath him and a large serpentine creature with three heads rose out of the gorge the bridge spanned. Chthon crossed his arms and glared up at the monster. It lowered its heads to look at him, it’s yellow eyes studying him. “Back to your hole serpent. I have no business with you.” He ordered cooly. They serpent tasted the air with its tongues then jerked back as if it smelled something disgusting. It slipped back into the gorge, refusing to tangle with such a powerful being. “Come on Assaku, now.” They young demon stepped out of the woods and lead the way once more.

“How did you do that?”

“Every creature knows of me. Nothing touches me unless it is ready to die.”

Ruth lay on the floor with blood pouring out of her nose. Cain pulled her to her feet by her hair and threw her back on the bed. He pinned her down, his tongue sliding up her neck to her ear. “You taste of fear.” He said. He licked some of the blood off her face and she spit at him. He slapped her again and laughed. “Why would Chthon marry such a weak creature and not use her the way he was taught. Humans are play things.”

“You are pathetic. Chthon is not the weak one here, you and your friends are. You can’t get a woman unless you kidnap and abuse her. You are nothing compared to him. Oh and for the record, it’s not fear you taste, but anger and disgust. I will never fear you.”

Cain laughed harder “You are so entertaining. Well worth the high price. I can’t wait to take you home with me. So high spirited for a weak human. It’s why I wanted you so badly. Soon you’ll be nice and docile for me.” Ruth was only getting angrier and was tempted to use her magic. She didn’t know if that demon had been bluffing or not. She couldn’t just allow him to rape her. Her body was Chthons. It had always been in her life before and she’d never let another man have it now. Ruth tried to electrocute him but it turned out not to be a bluff. It only minorly hurt Cain while massively hurting her. Cain was laughing again “They warned you didn’t they? Stupid bitch.”

“I had to try, I will never just lay down for you. I’m Chthons wife and only his.”

“He’s not coming for you. I still don’t believe you and you wont convince me.”

“I don’t give a fuck what you believe. I believe in my husband. If he is aware of what’s happening he is coming. Even if he has another wife now he would still help me because he’s a good guy.” Chthon made it to the front of the building. “I’m not sure where she is inside Chthon but this is where they sell the girls. The first night the buyers always spend here with them in one of the guest rooms. The unsold girls are in the dungeon but” Assuka was almost afraid to say it “but your wife is really beautiful so I’m sure she sold tonight” Chthon grabbed Assaku by the back of the neck. “You’ll help me find her.”

“Of course I will” Chthon burst in “whats your masters name again?”

“Botis”

“Botis!” Chthon yelled in a monstourous tone. It had lost almost all its human sound. Chthon took out walls as he walked around. Botis heard the commotion and came out “Ch Chthon, what’re you doing here?”

“You know why I’m here. Where’s my wife Ruth?”

“We don’t have her. Isn’t she dead Chthon.”

“Don’t you dare play stupid with me.” Botis was sweating and didn’t know what to say. He finally decided on “I sold a Ruth tonight but I didn’t know she was your wife Chthon. She’s supposed to be dead.” Chthon punched Botis sending him flying “stop fucking lieing. You ressurect all the women you sell you disgusting pervert. Tell me which room she’s in right now” In hopes his life would be spared Botis told Chthon and Chthon took off. He’d make all these demons pay after he got Ruth away from whatever demon she was sold to.

Chapter Two

Cain raised his head and listened. He had heard a voice, loud and angry. Ruth started laughing and he looked down at her. “I told you he was coming for me. He’s going to kill you for what you have done to me.” She said. He unchained her and threw her over his shoulder. She started kicking and screaming. He went to the window and pushed it open just as the bedroom door exploded inward. Ruth’s eyes met his for a brief moment before Cain jumped out the window. He flew through the sky, heading for a tall mountain in the distance.

Chthon was in a state of shock. It really was his Ruth. He ran to the window and jumped out, leaving Assaku there. He would easily find his way back home. He followed the demon who had her as fast as he could. Cain threw up barriers to slow him. He called upon fire, throwing it at Chthon in tendrils that wrapped around him and sent him falling to earth. Ruth screamed for him, tears sliding down her cheeks. Cain took her into a cave and dropped her on the hard ground.

“If he wants you so bad he will have to fight me. What he doesn’t know is that once he steps in here he will be powerless. He’ll be as weak as a human. It’s a hard spell to weave, but I managed it. You’ll get to watch him die and then I will feast on your agony and despair.”

Ruth started crying, wishing she could set the demon on fire. She wanted him dead. They waited in silence for Chthon to arrive, her heart beating out a fearful rhythm. When he didn’t immediately show up Cain became impatient. He dragged her to the mouth of the cave and stuck his head out. Someone grabbed his shirt and jerked him out along with Ruth. They rolled across the ground, coming to a stop about ten feet away.

“Nice try youngling, but I’m far to intelligent to fall for a stupid trick like that.”

“Chthon.” Ruth said, pushing herself to her feet. Cain jerked on her chain, forcing her back down even as he stood.

“So you are the mighty Chthon. I have heard many things about you, especially how you stopped being a true demon and married a human. How pathetic of you. Then you killed your own father over her. It makes me sick.”

“You, I will kill slowly.” Chthon said, his eyes glowing.

Cain started to laugh when his laughter fell silent and he dropped, unable to move. Chthon chuckled sadistically “You talk big for a demon who’s weak enough to be locked up within his own body. I didn’t even have to touch you.” Chthon walked over to Ruth. He grabbed her collar and tore it in half then took his shirt off. “I know you’re cold.” His angry and hate filled gaze only kind in the seconds he was looking at her. Chthon kissed her head. He knew if he let his lips touch hers he wouldn’t be able to stop kissing her. He had this monster to deal with now. Just the small taste was enough until he had her safely in his castle.

Ruth pulled the shirt on then covered her eyes. She wondered if him kissing her on the head meant he had moved on with another woman. Ruth kept her eyes tightly shut. She didn’t know what Chthon was doing and didn’t want to know. Since Chthon silenced Cain, the only noise she ever heard was an occasional¬†chuckle from Chthon. This was the one time in her life she didn’t mind violence. She was glad that horrible, disgusting man was getting what he deserved. Who knew how many women before her he had raped and beaten. That business had obviously been going on for awhile.

Suddenly she felt Chthons arms pick her up. He ran and she wrapped her arms around him. “Chthon, you’ve got to help the other girls too. They have some locked in the dungeon still.”

“I promise I well make sure that place never does busisness again Ruth but for now I’m taking you home. That’s final. Once you are safe I will come back on my own. Ruth could tell he wasn’t budging. Chthons eyes were still glowing as he ran. It would take them awhile for him to calm down enough for them to be normal. Chthon ran non stop until they were back in their own world. He sat down, holding her even tighter and finally started to bawl. His glowing eyes returned to normal as he sobbed. He put a hand on her cheek and looked into those beautiful eyes he had never forgotten and saw frequently in his dreams. “It’s really you. My Ruth.” was all he could say before he was abwling again. He brought her lips to his and he felt that strong, miraculous sensation he felt when she was alive. He could feel his heart becoming whole again already as he kissed Ruth and cried.

“Hush now love, I’m here and I’m not leaving.” She whispered softly as she stroked his hair.

“I missed you more than you will ever know.”

“I am so sorry that I put you through so much grief. Please forgive me.”

“There is nothing to forgive. I understood why you did it. You loved your family with everything that you were and you didn’t want to watch them die.”

“But watching me die hurt you as well. I put you through that agony. I remember your face as I passed away. I regret not letting you make me a demon. It was selfish of me.”

“Lets not talk about it anymore. I just want you home.” He stood, running with her to his castle. She was amazed that everything was the same as it had been before. He took her upstairs to the bathroom. She was covered in blood and bruises, the scent of that demon covered her. He wanted her smell, no one else’s. He lowered her slowly to her feet then started the shower, testing the water before undressing both of them and lifting her into the tub. He held her tightly against him, stroking her hair and kissing her. He washed the blood from her face and used her soap to scrub Cain’s scent from her skin. He tangled his fingers in her hair and tipped her head back, his mouth finding hers in a gentle kiss.

She pulled back to look at him. At the face she had fallen madly in love with. He was just as handsome as he had been all those years ago. “I am so glad to have a second chance to be with you.” She said.

“I could never move on from you. Every night I dreamed of you and every morning I would wake hoping to see your smile.” He grabbed her hand and pressed it against his chest. “Without you my heart nearly stopped. The only thing that kept me alive were our descendents.” He started crying again and buried his face in her hair. His tears broke her heart, wrenching her own tears from her eyes. She had hurt him so bad.

“I promise to stay with you forever Chthon.” She felt him shudder as sobs wracked his body. They stayed under the water until it ran cold. He dried them both and carried her to bed.

“I have to go back and destroy that place Ruth, but I don’t want to leave you. I am so afraid that this is just a dream and that when I come back you will be gone.”

“I’ll be right here when you get back I promise. I am so tired so I’ll just sleep until you come home. You have to save those girls.”

“I love you so much.” He kissed her softly before getting dressed and leaving. If he stayed another moment, he would never go.

On his way out he spotted Abraxas and called him over “I don’t have the time to explain but Ruths back and she’s going to be resting in my room. I don’t often command you but right now you are to keep an eye on my door. Nobody enters that room besides me. If Ruth decides to leave it you are to accompany her and make sure not one more hair on her head is harmed. Do you understand?”

“Yes father” Chthon gave his son a quick hug and ran off. Abraxas was floored and wondered if his father had finally lost his mind with grief. He almost wanted to open the door and see but if he woke her and his father found out he knew there’d be hell to pay. Especially if it was the woman he had heard so much about. Chthon was always talking about memories with Ruth even though they had made him sad. Abraxas walked up the stairs then sat down Indian style at the side of the door. He was tired but when his father actually did give a command it wasn’t to be ignored. Abraxas also hoped the girl in his fathers room would come out so he could meet her and confirm it was really Ruth and Chthon wasn’t delusional. Nigel was running to the kitchen and tripped over Abraxas “you asshole! Watch where you’re going”

“why are you sititng in front of your dads door?”

“Ruths apparently in there and he wanted me to guard her door.” Nigels eyes went wide and he took in the air. He covered his mouth “how in the hell is she back? She died.”

“she’s really in there?”

“I’ve been around since before she was. I’d know that scent anywhere. Ruth really is in that room. I have to know how” Nigel went for the doorknob and Abraxas stood glaring at him. It almost matched up to the death glare Chthon could give. Nigel backed away with his heart fearfully pounding “what?”

“My dad says nobody is to go in there.”

“She knows me”

“He said nobody, so nobody goes in there. She’s sleeping anyway so move on before the talking wakes her” Nigel sighed “fine” Abraxas could breath easy now that he knew this was real. His father would finally be happy again. He had heard how his father was when Ruth was aroudn and had always wanted to see him that way. Now that he had Ruth in his life again his fathers heart would finally be full and he’d be cheerful and friendly. Not that Chthon had been mean to him or anything but there was never a day when he had seemed truly happy.

Ruth woke an hour later feeling thirsty. She pulled open their closet and smiled when she saw her clothes still there. She pulled on a dress then pulled her hair up. She crossed the room to the door, pulling it open and tripping over someone. Abraxas caught her with lightning speed and she swore for a second that she was looking at Chthon then she realized his eyes were a different color.

“Sorry about that, are you okay?” He said and helped her to her feet.

“I’m fine thank you. May I ask you who you are?”

“Oh, my name is Abraxas. I am Chthon’s son.”

“Oh.” She wondered if he had lied about moving on. She didn’t know why it hurt her feelings when all she wanted was his happiness. It had been centuries so he had had every right to find love elsewhere. “It’s very nice to meet you Abraxas. You look so much like your father.”

“Thank you ma’am. Is there something you needed?”

“Some water.”

“My father asked me to watch over you. I hope it’s okay if I follow you.”

“Of course, I would love the company.”

Chthon stood before the castle. He rushed inside, killing the slavers. He freed the women, ordering them to run out and get far away. He called upon all the elements to help him destroy this place. The earth quivered beneath him, splitting open and allowing hot magma to seep out. He pulled lightning from the sky, making it slam into the towers. He used all of his energy to bring this place crashing down. No woman would ever have to go through the horrors of being taken by these men. When the building was nothing but a pile of rubble he made it rain to put out the fire and cool the magma. He gathered the women and took them back to his world.

“There is a village not far from here. Go there and ask for help, but say nothing about me.” He said as gently as he could. They nodded their understanding and he left them. He wanted Ruth in his arms.

“so where’s your mother Abraxas?”

“she died when I was really little”

“Poor Chthon, he had me die then her.”

“Their relationship was nothing like that. They were a one night stand and my mom even felt guilty for it. When I asked about meeting my dad she told me that she had never told him she was pregnant with me because she had taken advantage of him at a really low point. He had just been to visit your grave. He does..well I guess now did it often. He always comes home sobbing and locks himself in the room for a few days afterward. She was staying here temporarily and went in his room and kept insisting sex would make him feel better. It only made him feel worse and my mom left the castle. I only know him now because my mother was killed by some other demons. All I knew was that I had a father, his name was Chthon and he lived in a castle. I found him and he took me in. He didn’t seem very bothered about my mothers death.”

Ruth felt guilty for feeling a little relieved that his mother wasn’t someone Chthon loved. I guess it mainly made her feel better that he hadn’t lied to her. She should have known he didn’t. Chthon had never lied to her before and wouldn’t start now that she was back. Ruth got another glass of water then Abraxas continued “I’m so happy your back even though I didn’t know you the first time. I hear stories about how my father was when you were here. How he was always so happy and full of life. I don’t want to make you feel guilty but he’s only been a husk of a man without you. You haven’t left his mind a single day since your death. He forever missed you Ruth. I hope you are here for good this time.”

“Yes, I plan on asking him to make me a demon tomorrow.” Abraxas let out a relieved breath and Ruth smiled. Abraxas chuckled and said “sorry Ruth, I just want him to become happy again and stay that way. My dad needs you”

“and I need him. I really regretted not letting him make me a demon. I never wanted to leave him but by the time I came to my senses I was too old for him to change me.” Abraxas hopped off the counter and hugged Ruth. She hugged him back for awhile then he let go “You want to go anywhere else?”

“No, I’ll wait in the room for Chthon. You can come in if you want so you aren’t sitting in front of the door alone”

“Thanks, I’d love to hear some stories you have about my dad”

“I’d be happy to tell them” Abraxas excitedly followed Ruth into the bedroom. His heart even felt warmer with her there. She really did light up this castle like everybody said she did. She was already living up to what they had all told him. When he first started hearing about Ruth it had astounded him how there wasn’t one person in the castle who didn’t miss Ruth after her demise.

Chthon made it home as quickly as he could. He ran into the castle and upstairs. He could hear Ruth talking and laughing and paused to listen. He heard a male voice, his son. He was laughing along with her as he listened to her stories. He pushed the door open and they both looked up at him.

“You’re home.” Ruth said and jumped up to hug him.

“Please let me bathe first. I have blood all over me.” He replied, holding up his hands to stop her.

“Sorry for not staying outside father.” Abraxas said.

“It’s okay son, I’m sure Ruth asked you in. Thank you for watching over her.”

His father’s warm tone made him very happy. “Anything for you and Ruth father.”

He left the room, giving them some privacy. Chthon went into the bathroom and pulled off his dirty clothes. He switched on the shower and stepped under the water. He had been a bit nervous about Ruth meeting his son, but knew he could not hide him from her. He did not want to be dishonest because he feared what she might say.

“He’s a very nice young man.” Ruth said as she leaned against the door frame.

“He’s a very good boy, he always has been.” He replied as he washed the filth from his skin.

“I am truly glad you have him. A child should always be your reason for living. He loves you very much.”

“Do you hate me for him?”

“What kind of stupid question is that? Of course I don’t. I love him as if he were my own. He seems almost sad when he talks about you.”

“I may have emotionally neglected him, but he understood. He knows the grief of losing the most important person in your life.” He switched off the water and stepped out, grabbing a towel and drying himself. “I love you with all my heart Ruth. His mother was a very small part of my life. I felt guilty for sleeping with her and cried over it for hours. Even though you were gone, I felt like I was betraying you. I hated myself.”

She grabbed his face in her hands and pulled him down into a kiss. He dropped his towel and wrapped his arms around her. She pulled back and brushed her thumbs over his cheeks. “I’m not angry. It doesn’t bother me that you tried to find peace. I want only your happiness.”

“I am happiest when I am with you. No woman can ever take your place, no woman can make me feel the way you do. You made me yours mind, body and soul.”

“Hush now, I know how much you love me and need me. I feel the same and I always will.”

Chthon hugged Ruth again crying. “chthon” Ruth said softly “I’m sorry, I want to stop but my heart has ached for you every day. I’m just so happy you’re back with me. I’ve been so miserable. I need to clean my library so it’s fit for you again.”

“why isn’t it clean? You always kept that room spotless.”

“I couldn’t enjoy reading after your death. It just wasn’t the same without you sitting beside me or reading to you or you reading to me. I’ve barely gone in there since your death and of course nobody else is allowed in there still.”

“I’m really sorry I didn’t become a demon but tomorrow after breakfast i really want you to make me one.” Chthons mouth trembled and he lifted Ruth into a kiss and carried her over to the bed to lay her down. His tears splashed in her hair and on her cheeks as they kissed. “you really want to this time?”

“Yes, I wanted to the first time but by the time I decided to I was too old and you couldn’t do it so I never said anything.”

“I’m glad Gulliver brought my book back. I let him borrow it to turn his love into a demon and he gave it back to me when he moved out of Tresnia with her. Speaking of which, you need to meet your grandchildren. they are all so wonderful and your great great great great grandsons wife is so much like you. I think you’ll enjoy her.”

“I’m excited to meet them.”

“It’ll have to wait until the day after tomorrow since we’re changing you. It’s going to be painful and drain you. You’ll need to spend all day in bed.”

“Ok, anything I have to go throug to never leave your side again Chthon.” Chthon almost started crying again but held it back. Chthon locked their lips in a passionate, hungry kiss. He took Ruths dress off and threw it on the floor then did the same with her underwear. He sat on his knees and looked down at the incredibly gorgeous woman below him. “Just as breath taking as I remember” he said in a cracked voice. “I love you Chthon” He couldn’t hold his tears back any longer and gently cried as he began to kiss all over Ruths body. He began to kiss her soft lips again as he thrust himself into her. That wonderful, intense feeling he got when he was one with her came back. He took on a steady pace then whispered in her ear “I love you so much, so so much Ruth. You’re all I’ve ever wanted and I need you.” Ruth felt his tears falling into her ear and hair.

She felt guilty once again. She hated how stupid she was back then. Ruth really had no idea she’d cause Chthon this much pain. She always knew how much he loved her but never expected he would spend hundreds of years alone with only a one night stand in that span of time because of her. She had fully expected after she died that he would eventually fall in love again but apparently she was his only love. Chthon released inside of Ruth then laid beside her. He wrapped his arms tightly around Ruth and rained kisses on her face, neck and shoulder.

Ruth stroked his temple until he fell asleep with his head resting on her chest. He held her tightly, his fear of losing her again showing in his hold on her. She felt tears burning in her eyes and they spilled over, sliding down her cheeks. She cover her mouth to keep herself from waking him. “I will never hurt you again.” She whispered. She took a deep breath and allowed herself to fall asleep.

The next morning Chthon jerked awake, his heart racing. He was immediately relieved when he saw Ruth sleeping soundly next to him. He noticed she had been crying and wondered if he had done something wrong. He kissed her softly and got out of bed. He knew the perfect way to make her smile. He pulled on a pair of pants and moved quietly downstairs to the kitchen. He was going to make her favorite cookies then clean the library. Nigel was sitting in the kitchen looking anxious. He jumped up when Chthon entered the room.

“Is she really here? My nose isn’t playing tricks on me is it?” Nigel asked.

“Yes my friend she’s really here and as beautiful as ever. You have no idea the joy I feel.” He answered with a warm smile. “Could you do me a favor?”

“Of course.”

“Can you find Abraxas and have him help you clean the library while I bake cookies?” Nigel’s eyes widened in shock. “Problem?”

“It’s just, you never let anyone go in there.”

“Today I make an exception and maybe every day after. It’s petty to keep everyone away from my books when there are more important things in my life.”

“I am so glad Ruth is back. Leave the library to us.” He left and Chthon started making dough.

The smell of peanut butter cookies woke her. It made her stomach growl. She smiled because she knew Chthon was the one baking. She got out of bed and pulled on a pair of pants and a shirt. She walked slowly downstairs, taking some time to absorb the beauty of the castle. She had always loved this place. It was her home. She made her way to the kitchen and leaned against the door frame to watch him. “They smell wonderful.” She said, surprising him. “Didn’t smell me?”

“The cookies are covering up all other smells.” He pulled her into his arms and kissed her. He brushed his fingers through her hair, marveling at its softness. “I wanted to make something special for you.”

“You are the most wonderful husband.”

“I hope you always think so.”

“I will.”

Chthon held Ruth until the oven went off then took the cookies out and set them on a plate. “lets go back to the room so I can hold you while we eat.” Ruth kissed Chthon then said “Ok” They walked up and got on the bed. Ruth positioned herself against her husbands chest and he set the plate of cookies in her lap. “I didn’t think this through. I’m going to get cookie crumbs in your hair.”

“Then we’ll shower after this if you get in with me” Chthon smiled “Ok” They both happily ate cookies until they were all gone. Chthon chuckled at how many crumbs ended up in Ruths hair. Ruth looked in the mirror “You sure wanted me back in that shower” Chthon just stood there, silently staring at Ruth “what is it baby?” Ruth said turning to him. “I’m just so happy you’re home. You’ll never understand just how much I missed you. How much I thought of you and longed to have you back.” Ruth hugged Chthon, seeing tears start to well in his eyes yet again.

” I see it very well, your heartache shows in how tightly you hold me. It shows in the fact all my clothes are still here and nothings different. Some of the things Abraxas told me last night also showed me very well how much I was missed. You will never have to go through that again Chthon. Are you ready to change me after I get these cookies out of my hair.”

“Yeah, lets hurry and get clean. Maybe after you’re changed I can quit blubbering so much.”

“You have every right to cry this much Chthon. I’m so very sorry. When I first made my choice I had no idea someone as amazing and handsome as you would just spend the rest of their eternity alone. I thought you’d mourn me awhile but then move on with a new wife and make new kids.”

“I don’t know how, I obviously didn’t show you enough how deep my love is Ruth. How could I ever be with another woman when no woman could ever measure up to you. Your beauty, your kindness, I could go on and on Ruth. After you no woman could make me happy. You are my soul mate. The other half of my heart. My heart finally feels whole again with you here.” Ruth started to cry “no, please don’t Ruth. That was supposed to make you happy honey. I can’t take your tears.”

“I love you so much Chthon. To think I’ve wasted all these years being dead.”

“Good thing we’re both going to be immortal soon huh? We’ll have until the end of time together and it’s not like anything can kill me and I sure as hell wont let anything kill you. You’re going to become stronger too. Some of my power will flow into you since our blood will mingle. You will be able to do most of what I do, maybe everything. We’ll have to see.”

Chapter Three

They showered quickly and Chthon went downstairs to retrieve the book and some help. He was amazed at how well his son and Nigel had cleaned the library. Abraxas sneezed at all the dust in the air and opened a window to let it out. “I need both of you to come with me.” He said and they put down their rags. They went back upstairs where Ruth waited patiently. “I am going to change Ruth and I need both of you to help me. Nigel I need you to read the incantation since you have been around the longest, Abraxas please make sure she does not hurt herself. She may fall and I don’t want her hitting her head.”

“Yes sir.” They said in unison.

Chthon handed Nigel the book and sat down next to Ruth at the small table they used to read at. He slid his hand over hers and gave her a gentle kiss. “I am sorry for the pain you will go through. Please forgive me.” He said softly.

“It’s okay, it can’t be any worse than child birth.” She replied with a trusting smile.

Nigel flipped the book open to the right page and pulled his dagger from his hip. He started reading, the words flowing perfectly from his lips. He drove the dagger through their hands, making Ruth flinch a little. She kept her eyes on Chthon, showing him that she did not regret this decision one bit. Nigel pulled the dagger out, letting their blood mix together as he continued to read. Searing pain moved up her arm and into her chest. She screamed as her body convulsed and she fell. Abraxas caught her and handed her over to his father as Chthon dropped down next to them. He cried as her body jerked and stiffened, her muscles clenching tightly. Abraxas wrapped his arms around both of them sharing in their pain. When she was unconscious Nigel hurried downstairs to grab a vial of healing agent to pour over their hands. He poured it over their hands then helped Abraxas clean up the blood as Chthon put Ruth in bed.

“Tell us what you need father and we will get it for you.” Abraxas said, his heart breaking for his father and Ruth.

“Can you bring up as many vials of pain medicine as you can find. If you need to make more there is a book of recipes in the kitchen.”

“Yes of course.” They both left and Abraxas returnd shortly with all the vials they had in the pantry. “If you need anything else just yell for us. You should stay with Ruth. We can cook and clean father.”

“You are such a good boy Abraxas. I’m sorry for not being a good father.”

“You were an amazing father. You taught me to love and respect humans. I am glad I came to live with you. I love you father.”

“I love you too son.” Abraxas left them alone, tearing up at his father’s warm words.

Chthon laid his head on Ruths chest. His arms were wrapped tightly around her body. He wished there would have been a less painful way for her to live forever. Changing was harder to watch her go through than he thought but it wasn’t nearly as hard as when he had to watch her die. Thinking at that time she had slipped through his fingers forever. Part of him still worried this was some sort of dream and he’d awake to the cruel reality of having to live without Ruth again. Chthon cried for a little longer then decided to change her into a swimsuit so that when she was awake he could take her out to the hotspring. He knew how cramped and uncomfortable her muscles would be so he planned to massage her in there to help her get comfortable.

Chthon opened the top drawer in the chest of drawers he had bought her so many years ago. Everything she ever owned was still in the places she left it. He pulled out her bikini then gently took off clothes. He easily slipped on her bottoms then got her top on. Once Ruth was ready to go relax in the hotspring he got back under the covers with her to just hold her close. Chthon vowed to make sure that ceremony would be the last time she had to feel any pain. When Ruth woke she groaned and Chthon grabbed a vial “here, it’ll help. Once you drink that I’ll take you to our hot spring and massage you.” Ruth drank two quickly then Chthon lifted her up. Ruth chuckled lightly “You changed me”

“I wanted to just be able to take you once you awoke. I don’t want you to hurt any more than you have to. I’m so sorry there isn’t a gentler way”

“You are worth it Chthon. You’ve always been amazing to me and I love you very much. Thank you for getting me ready. It would’ve been horribel trying to put this on with how I feel.”

“Thats also why i wanted to do it while you were out so hard. It’s horrible to see you in pain”

“I could hear you crying while I was convulsing. I’m sorry it upset you so much”

“Lets just get in the hot water where I can help you feel better. I’ll ask Abraxas and Nigel to get a meal ready for you when we get back.” Ruth just wrapped her arms around Chthons neck and laid her head on his shoulder. He sighed happily even though he still felt down after watching her in so much pain and remembering her death. Abraxas came running when Chthon walked out of the room “whats going on dad?”

“I’m traking Ruth to the hot spring. Could you have dinner ready and brought to our room when we get back?”

“Of course, you ok Ruth?”

“Thanks for your help. Your dad is making sure that I’m alright.” Abraxas smiled “I’m so happy you’re back and here to stay. I look forward to getting to know you more.”

“Me too Abraxas. You seem like such an amazing man.”

Ruth loved the almost child like happiness on Abraxas’s face as he ran off to start dinner. He didn’t seem to have a temperamental bone in his body. “You sound so motherly when you speak to him. It’s cute.” Chthon said as he took her down to the lower levels of the castle to a cave that opened up to the hot spring. He lowered her slowly into the water then pulled his clothes off and slid on next to her. He pulled her into his arms and let his hand drift over her neck and down her back. He massaged out all the knots, making her sigh in contentment when she was completely loose.

“I feel so much better.” She said and kissed his chest. “Oh and by the way, I can’t help but sound motherly. I did have children once and Abraxas is just as much mine as he is yours.”

“I love it, it warms my heart.” He tipped her head back and gave her is most earth shattering smile. “We could always have more children. I wouldn’t mind and I’m sure Abraxas would love to have siblings.” He laughed when she just stared at him. “Lets put a pin in it for now. After what you just went through, I understand if pregnancy and child birth sounds unappealing.”

She pulled him down into a kiss, exciting and surprising him. He held her as tightly as he dared as his tongue explored her mouth. She pulled back, leaving them both breathless. “I would love more children, a whole castle full.” She whispered with a smile.

“We’ll have as many as you want. We have forever. You can make sure I am a good father.”

“You were an amazing father to our children and to Abraxas. I know you think you neglected him, but look how wonderful he turned out. He is so kind and he loves unconditionally. He cares very much for you. He is his father’s son.”

“You are so wonderful Ruth, an angel. He really likes you. I think because he lost his mother at such a young age that maybe he sees you as a sort of new mom. He gets so excited when you say nice things to him. Even for someone as old as he is, he still has the temperament of a youngling.”

“I am truly glad he was born.” She smiled and rested her head against his chest, allowing herself to relax completely into him. The warmth of the water and the comfort of being in his arms lulled her to sleep. He kissed the top of her head and ran his hand up and down her back.

“I love you so much Ruth.” He whispered and kissed her head again. He was going to be unable to leave her side for a long time without worrying. He was terrified of losing her again. Even though he was an incredibly strong demon, he had felt powerless after her death. He never wanted to feel that way again.

He let about a half hour more pass then decided she should be dried and eat. He planned on relaxing Ruth to sleep again once she had food in her stomach. She’d start to feel worse if he didn’t get some food in her. “sweetheart” Chthon whsipered. He slightly increased the sound of his voice each time he said it until Ruth stirred. “I’m sorry”

“Don’t be, you’ll be very tired all day today but you need to eat. I really didn’t want to wake you but you’ll feel a lot worse if your body doesn’t get some food.” Chthon got out of the water and found some towels he kept nearby to dry her. He did it quickly then walked back into the castle. “so you’ll want us to cook now?” Nigel asked as soon as he saw the two. “Yes, thank you”

“I’ll just run tell Abraxas. He’s already prepped for cooking” Chthon smiled then took Ruth to their room to get her into somthing comfortable to wear. When Chthon laid Ruth on the bed he asked.”do you want me to change you again so you have to move as little as possible?” Ruth smiled “If you wouldn’t mind” Chthon gave Ruth ¬†a gentle and loving kiss before running his hand down the side of her face. “Of course I wouldn’t. I want nothing more than to take care of you. You’re so precious to me.” Chthon looked down at Ruth. “You have another swimsuit. Can I just detroy this so I can move you a little less?” Ruth nodded and he quickly ripped apart her bikini and threw the pieces on the floor.

Chthon grabbed some pajama pants and one of his shirts then put them on her as carefully as possible. Ruths heart warmed at how gentle he was being and how lovingly he put the clothes on her. Chthon then put Ruth in a better postion on the bed and pulled her into his arms. “I wish you could be naked but I don’t want Nigel and Abraxas seeing that much of you.”

“I knew that was it. It’s ok. I’m still cold, I’ve been getting cold so easy since being brought back.”

“You’ve been dead a long time. It’ll just take awhile I’m sure.”

“I’m not worried about it. I ahve you to keep me warm” Chthon smiled as his heart melted “yes you do. I hope you’ll humor me for awhile. I don’t want you to be alone. I have to make sure you’re safe. I know it may be annoying but can you please allow Abraxas to be by your side if for whatever reason i have to go do somthing. I don’t think I can take having you unguarded for atleast a few months Ruth.”

“I’m ok with that Chthon”

“Thank you, I’m sorry”

“Don’t be sorry. I really understand.”

There was a knock on the bedroom door and Chthon got up and pulled it open. Abraxas and Nigel both stood there smiling. Chthon let them in and Abraxas sat their plates on the little table. Nigel had a book and drinks. He sat the drinks down next to the plates and handed the book to Ruth. She gave him her warmest smile and opened her arms. He hugged her and she gave him a kiss on the cheek. “Never leave us again Ruth.” He said.

“I won’t I promise. Besides Chthon wouldn’t let me.”

“Good.” He kissed her cheek and pulled away. “You two enjoy what we made. We worked really hard.”

She laughed an they left. Chthon picked her up and sat her at the table. “Would you like me to read while you eat?” He asked.

“If you want to.” He reached out and she handed him the book. She loved the sound of his voice as he read. It was incredibly soothing. Chthon had missed reading to her, had missed the way she looked when she was being drawn into a story. Her eyes lit up and she leaned forward. He leaned in and kissed her, surprising her.

“You were practically falling out of your chair.” He sat the book down and cleaned his own plate. “Finish eating then I will continue the story.”

“Come on, you can’t just leave me hanging like that.”

“Sure I can. Now eat.”

She huffed and finished eating. He carried her back to bed. Then opened the door and called for his son. Abraxas came running and they both laughed at his enthusiasm. He collected the plates then left with a happy, boyish smile. Chthon picked up the book and sat at the top of the bed. Ruth moved to lay between his legs and he continued reading. She found herself starting to doze. She blinked a couple of time, trying to stay awake.

“Go to sleep baby.” He whispered in her ear and she shook her head. “Why not?”

“I don’t want to leave you alone.” She whispered and he sat the book down. “I can never forget your face the day I died. I never want to see you cry like that again.”

“You are truly a miracle.” He tipped her head back and kissed her. “Just sleep baby, I’ll be fine.”

Ruth reluctantly let sleep take her. She was so tired that she couldn’t have struggled very long anyway. Chthon kissed Ruths head and wrapped his arms around her again. A wonderful sensation slowly moved through him as he held her. It was bliss to finally have Ruth in his arms again after all these years. He was grateful now that he couldn’t move on. He knew he probably would have left whoever he was with for her if he had found a new relationship but then Ruth would have to feel even worse and may not have even let him do that. Every day of the past years was worth being alone to just be able to pick Ruth up and be with the only woman he ever adored and loved so immensely.

Chthon was also happy Abraxas and Ruth seemed to like eachother so much. He was excited to have more kids with Ruth when she was ready. Suddenly his happy thoughts came to a screeching halt. Ruth would eventually ask where Nero was since their oldest son was still around when she died. A few days after his mothers death he had punched Chthon and screamed “Why didn’t you force her to become a demon! You’re ¬†an idiot and she wasn’t thinking straight! She may have been mad at first but she would have forgiven you and been happy living forever! I hate you, it’s your fault I don’t have my mother any longer.”

Nero had run off and never stepped foot in the castle again. He knew how guilty she would feel and hoped that conversation wouldn’t come up anytime soon and she’d just assume he was wandering somewhere else in the world on his own or with a new family. He knew she would notice once she felt better and they were back from their trip to Tresnia he had told her he’d take her on. Chthon held to hope maybe Sophie, Charles and their two children would distract her enough so that topic would stay far away as long as possible.

He kissed her softly on the top of her head and pulled the blanket up over her. He wrapped his arms tightly around her and allowed himself to relax. His eyes drifted closed and his mind filled with images of Ruth’s beautiful face. Her laughter and scent wrapped itself around him, soothing him. Morning came far to fast, waking him with bright sunlight playing across his skin. He opened his eyes and glared at the sun. Ruth moved against him, whispering his name in her sleep. His heart sped up and he couldn’t help but kiss her. His lips moved hungrily against hers, rousing her from her slumber.

“Good morning to you too.” She said when he pulled back to let her breathe.

“Sorry, I couldn’t help it. You just looked so beautiful.” He replied softly as he stroked his fingers down her cheek. “How are you feeling?”

“A lot better. I still have a couple of sore muscles, but other than that I feel great.”

“Good, lets have breakfast then we can head for Tresnia.”

“Sounds good.” He helped her change out of her pajamas into a dress and panties. She giggled at the way his eyes moved over her. “Careful now honey or we’ll never get downstairs.” She said with a warm smile.

“Sorry, I can’t help but look. It’s not fair how beautiful you are. You could bring me to my knees in an instant. You’ve always had a very strong hold on me.”

“You say such wonderful things. You make me so happy.” She kissed him and then made him get dressed. He carried her downstairs where Abraxas and Nigel already had breakfast ready. “You two are working far to hard.” She said as Chthon sat her at the table.

“I heard you talking about breakfast as I walked down the hall this morning. I thought you would still be to tired to cook and my father wouldn’t want to leave your side.” Abraxas replied as he made them both a plate.

“Why don’t you two join us.” Chthon said as he took his place next to Ruth.

“Thank you sir.” Nigel replied and he and Abraxas sat across from them.

“will you be coming with us to Tresnia Abraxas?” Ruth asked cheerfully as she at. “Oh yes, I love Charles, his wife and their children. I like Drea but not so much Paul.”

“Nobody really likes Paul. If he’s rude to you atall you tell me right away.” Chthon retorted “Is Paul or Drea decended from us?”

“Paul shamefully” Chthon answered again “Chthon”

“You haven’t met him yet Ruth” Abraxas then interjected “I doubt even you could like him Ruth.”

“I’m sure there’s somthing or another to like about him” The three men smiled as they finished eating. Once they were ready Chthon insisted Ruth drink somthing for the pain even though she swore she was alright. Chthon held Ruth tightly against him then ran with Abraxas to Tresnia. Ruth was floored when they slowed down and walked into Tresnia. “everythings so different”

“I know, I can only imagine how it is for you since you haven’t watched it slowly over time like I have.” Ruth looked all around the village. She saw all the children and elderly just bustling around. Things were the same but very different at the same time. Chthon and Abraxas walked quickly until they were at Charles and Sophies door. They heard Charles and Sophie playing in the living room with Thatcher and Victoria. Sophie answered “Chthon! Abraxas! Who’s this you’re carrying Chthon?”

“Ruth” Chthon said with ann ecstatic smile. “Come in” Sophie said in a confused tone. Charles asked their two children to go play outside for awhile. They all sat in the living room and Ruth could tell Sophie and Charles were puzzled “Yes, I am his Ruth from hundreds of years ago. I’m your grandmother Charles. It’s a very long story. Would you like to hear how I’m back?”

“If you don’t mind.”

“You’ll have to give me a hug for it. So does your wife.” Sophie jumped up as instantly as Ruth got out of Chthons arms. They embraced eachother tightly even though Ruth still ached she didn’t say anything. She was very excited to be meeting them. Charles got up and hugged her too. “well now that you two have paid I’ll tell you everything.” Ruth recounted every detail of events leaving Sophie in tears and hugging Ruth again. “I’m so happy your back but wish it didn’t have to be that awful at first.”

“It’s worth it to be with Chthon again. Yesterday he turned me into a demon so I never have to leave him again.”

“That’s good, he’s missed you so badly Ruth.”

“I’ve heard and feel horrible for not choosing to be immortal the first time.”

“You shouldn’t, Chthon was never angry at you Ruth” Ruth couldn’t resist hugging Sophie again “Chthon was correct about me liking you. You seem so sweet. You picked a good wife Charles”

“I know, can’t believe she settled for me.” Sophie sighed then punched her husband in the arm making him laugh. “lets do somthing fun.” Sophie turned and said. “Can I play with those beautiful children?” Ruth asked “Of course, lets take them to a lake outside of the village. “You want to Chthon?”

“If you feel up to it.”

“I do, I promise”

“Then we’ll go until you’re too tired.”

“So you’re like our grandmother right?” Victoria asked as she held one of Ruth’s hands and Thatcher held the other.

“Something like that.” Ruth replied with a warm smile.

“Can we call you grandmother?” Thatcher asked and she nodded.

Chthon smiled as he watched her with the children. She always looked her happiest around babies. Their children had been her pride and joy. She had raised them with so much love and devotion. Even the way she had explained to them the reason for being disciplined had been kind. He couldn’t wait to have more. He wanted her smiling like this every day. When they made it to the lake Ruth asked Chthon to show the children his magic. He wrote their names in the air with the water then made little mermaids that swam through the air around them so they were laughing and jumping to catch them.

“Thatcher looks just like my Nero. Same eyes, same smile, and that hair. I could never keep Nero’s neat.” Chthon froze, making the water drop onto the heads of Victoria and Thatcher. They giggled, but his heart slammed painfully against his chest. Ruth grabbed his hand and pulled him into the water. Charles and Sophie picked up their children and carried them into the water.

“Is it good Thatcher looks like him?” Charles asked as he brushed his son’s hair off his forehead.

“Oh yes. Thatcher is going to be quite handsome.”

“That’s good.”

“Well Charles you are quite good looking too. All the men in our family seem to be good looking.” She looked at all of the men, making them all blush, it was a rarity for Chthon. They played in the water until Victoria and Thatcher were yawning. They went back to Charles and Sophie’s to dry off. They let them borrow some clothes and then Ruth and Sophie got started making lunch while the children napped and the men talked.

“I’m glad Chthon has you back. He has spoken so highly of you.”

“He has always been such a sweet heart. He makes me seem like some sort of angel.”

“Charles does the same with me. He acts like the whole world revolves around me.”

“What do you think Paul will think of Ruth?” Chthon asked Charles.

“Who knows. He’s still as I’ll tempered as ever. I swear my mother is the only one who can deal with him. Half the time I want to break his nose.” Charles replied.

“Come on now you two, Ruth can tame even the wildest of creatures. I mean just look at my dad. He’s as gentle as a kitten.” Abraxas chimed in and Charles laughed as Chthin glared at his son. “Awe come on dad, just admit it. She’s got you wrapped around her little finger.” Chthin kept glaring. “Ruth dad won’t stop glaring.”

“Be good honey.” She said as she popped her head out of the kitchen.

“Yes dear.”

“See, I told you.”

Charles laughed even harder “I’m really happy for you. I couldn’t imagine life without Sophie. I can already see similarities between the two girls. I’ve always been curious since the day you told me Sophie was like your Ruth.”

“I’m sure we’ll be visiting frequently if you and Sophie would have us.”

“Of course, You know we always love company” Abraxas tried to hold back a laugh making Charles say “what?”

“Sophie likes company and you deal with it for her.”

“Not when it comes to you, Chthon and now Ruth. You guys are among the few I like seeing too.” Chthon then cleared his throat “you’ll meet your soulmate too one day Abraxas then we’re going to tease you double whatever lip you give us so hush it”

“I hope so” Chthon was shocked by that response. Abraxas had never seemed like he wanted to find sombody but now he actually did. Chthon wondered if maybe his depression and the way he had treated his mother had turned him off to relationships until now that Ruth was back and he saw how happy he and Charles were with their wives. They chatted awhile longer until Sophie yelled “dinners ready. Wake the children please.”

“I’ll get them, you two go in and sit with the girls.” Chthon and Abraxas went into the kitchen while Charles collected his children. As soon as Chthon sat down it hit him he was finally going to have Ruths cooking again. He became giddy and impatient for Charles to get down here with his grandchildren. The second Charles came down Chthon took a bite and could have fallen out of his chair. Ruth and Sophie laughed “so it’s good?” Sophie asked through her laughter. Ruth said “he’s always been over dramatic when it comes to the taste of my food. I really like this Sophie. Our methods of cooking blend well. I’d love for us to have a meal together at the minimum once a month. Could we do that?”

“Of course!” Sophie said excitedly as the men and children ate in silence. After dinner Ruth said “I need to meet Paul and Drea now.”

“Are you sure Ruth? What if he’s rude to you? I can barely tolerate him being rude to Drea or Sophie.”

“It’ll be fine, I want to meet them.”

“I guess” Chthon said worried that he may end up taking Pauls head off if he made Ruth even the slightest bit uncomfortable. “why don’t I stay here with the children and you four go?” Abraxas offered “yay! We love uncle Abraxas!”

“Then it’s settled. Lets go Chthon and Ruth” Charles said. Chthon and Charles picked up their wives almost simultaneously. “Bye mommy, daddy, grandpa and grandma!” The kids said waving. They walked over to Paul and Dreas. Sophie knocked on the door and his mother answered “what a surprise! Come in, all of you. Who do you have with you Chthon?”

“It’s my Ruth, the one I told you all about. She’s back from the dead and has gone through the cerimony to be a demon so she never leaves me again.”

“I’ll tell you the story if you sit down” Ruth said with a smile. “Where’s dad?” Charles asked when they sat. “He should be home within the hour. I’ll retell the story if I need to. I want to hear it badly.”

Chapter Four

Drea cried her eyes out at Ruth’s words and Charles and Sophie comforted her the best they could. When Paul came home he glared at Chthon. “How many times do I have to tell you to stop coming back?” He said angrily.

“I have brought someone important for you to meet.” Chthon shot back. Ruth grabbed his arm and stepped between the two men.

“You must be Paul.” She said happily.

“Yes and who are you?”

“My name is Ruth, I’m sure Chthin must have told you about me.”

“What kind of stupid joke is this? Ruth has been dead for centuries.” Ruth smiled warmly as she reached up with lightening speed and grabbed ahold of his ear, pulling him down to eye level so he gave a painful yelp.

“You should show some respect to your elders. I hear you have a sour temper and often give your wife hell, shame on you.” She turned around to face Drea. “Apologize for being such an ass or I’ll take your ear.”

“Ah, okay I’m sorry, I’m sorry. Please let go.” She released him and he rubbed his ear. “You act just like my mother. She didn’t take any crap from my dad.”

“Is she one of our descendants?” Chthon nodded. “Good, I would hope all the women from our line would easily challenge a man’s temper. Drea honey, please don’t be afraid to grab him by his ear if he starts to act up. His childish way of getting wht he wants needs to stop.”

“I’m not childish.” She smiled at him and he closed his mouth. Ruth gave him a hug and he hugged her back.

“Start being nicer. It gets you a lot further.”

“Yes ma’am.”

Chthon and Charles just sat there open mouthed while Sophie just smiled and Drea seemed to not know how to react. Paul sat down next to his wife and they all chatted until dinner when Drea asked “will you two girls help me cook dinner for all these men?” Both women agreed then Chthon said “I’ll go get my son and the grandchildren.” before he left. Charles and Paul sat in silence as they normally did. “How have things been son?” Paul tried. Charles answered knowing if Sophie heard him ask he was expected to answer. “Wonderful, things have been going well for my wife, children and I. It’s been nice meeting Ruth too.”

“I can’t believe she’s alive. I did think it was a sick joke.”

“why would Chthon joke about his dead wife?”

“Not sure” Paul said crossing his arms and looking into the kitchen at the girls. “She got my ear good. It still hurts”

“You deserve it. Especially for how you treat my mother. She deserves way better than what you give her.”

“Mind your tongue Charles” In the kitchen Ruth was talking to Drea “You need to stick up for yourself Drea. Just get a good hold of his ear. Do anything, don’t let him treat you poorly or talk down to you. I can only help so much.”

“I’ll try”

“don’t try, do please. I will not have one of my grandchildren behaving that way. I’m going to come here frequently and give him a tongue lashing until he’s a good husband. I’m so sorry for him.”

“He’s not all bad.”

“I think you’ve convinced yourself he’s nicer to you than he really is by how Sophie, Charles, Abraxas and Chthon talk about him. You should take some time to think on how he honestly treats you then decide how you deserve to be treated and enforce it. If he can’t be the husband you deserve you’re always welcome in the castle.”

“I’ll stick up for myself Ruth. Don’t worry”

“Good, I’m glad to hear Charles treats you well Sophie.”

“I have no complainets atall. He’s always been avery good man” Drea smiled then added “I’ve always been so proud of him” Chthon walked in with Abraxas and the children in toe. Before much longer the three woman had dinner on the table and everybody sat down to eat. Everyone ate quietly since the food was so good. Ruth was getting exhausted again, had been since they began cooking but didn’t want to go home so she was trying to hide it. Chthon noticed while he was eating since he had been looking at her out of the corner of his eye. When they were all full Chthon picked up Ruth “Ruths really tired after going through her change yesterday. I shoudl really get her home and in bed.”

“why don’t you spend the night with us?” Sophie asked. “I’d love that Chthon, lets”

“Then we will. Are you staying too son?”

“I’d like that” Thatcher excitedly asked “Will you make a fort in my room with me in my room tonight!”

“Of course little buddy” Abraxas said cheerfully. Charles spoke “Then you and Ruth can share our guest room. Lets go home so you can get her in bed. I’m surprised you lasted so long today Ruth judging by how Stacy was after Gulliver changed her. Ruth jumped out of Chthons arms to hug Drea. Ruth whispered “Please stick to your word and make that man behave”

“I will Ruth” Drea whispered back.

Chthon took Ruth straight to bed once they arrived back at Charles and Sophie’s. He knew if he didn’t that she would exhaust herself even more by staying up late. She told them goodnight as he carried her upstairs. He plopped her down on the bed and pulled her shoes off then his own. He crawled in next to her and pulled her close, inhaling her sweet scent as he did so.

“You did an amazing thing with Paul today.” He said and she gave a soft laugh.

“That boy needs to learn to control his temper. If you can do it then so can he. Treating his wife with disrespect is a disgrace. As a man he should know better.” She replied softly.

“You’ll have him whipped into shape in no time.”

“You bet I will. Every time he smarts off I’ll give him hard labor.”

He laughed and tipped her head back to kiss her. She smiled against his lips, making his heart sing with joy. He pulled her on top of him and nibbled his way down her neck to her shoulder. “You taste good.” He slid his hand under her shirt to cup her breast, his fingers tugging gently at her nipple so she gave a breathy moan.

“This isn’t our home Chthon.” She managed to say.

“Then we’ll have to be really quiet.” He lifted her shirt and bit at her already sensitive skin.

“I don’t think I can.” He rolled her beneath him then flipped her onto her stomach, making her heart stutter at the sudden movement.

“Now you have something to bite onto just in case.” He whispered in her ear as he pulled both of their clothes off. She went into a full body blush, her skin growing hot. He kissed down her spine, giving her bottom a playful bite so she yelped. He chuckled and kissed his way back up. He nudged her legs apart and lifted her hips a little. He tangled their fingers together and slid himself slowly into her. She gasped and he captured her lips with his to help muffle her cries. His hips took on a slow, gentle pace that brought tears to her eyes. The intensity of her orgasms left her shaking and begging for more. She whispered his name and he spilled himself into her, his fingers gripping hers tightly. He kissed her shoulder and moved to lay beside her. He pulled her into his arms, kissing her softly and stroking her cheek.

“I love you so much Ruth. Everything I am belongs to you.”

“I love you too you crazy wonderful man.” She rested her head on his chest and they fell quickly asleep.

The smell of pancakes and sausage woke Ruth. She felt much better today. She guessed by tomorrow she would feel perfect. Thatcher reminded Ruth so much of Nero. It made her wonder what he was up to lately. Ruth kissed Chthon awake. He smiled and looked at her, his eyes deep pools of love and happiness. HIs heart finally beat again, it no longer hurt just to wake up. It was back to being filled with joy when he’d see his wife beside him. “where’s my Nero? I didn’t see him atall in the castle when you took me to see everybody. Did he move out?” Chthons happy heart slowed as he tensed and frowned. “Where is he Chthon?”

“Can we talk about it at home Ruth?”

“I can tell it’s bad. Did…did somthing happen to my baby? I need you to tell me or it’ll be all I think about” Chthon sighed and pulled Ruth down to hug her. He struggled to speak but he had to tell her. “He didn’t take loseing you very well. He locked himself up in his room when he wasn’t out raging. A few days after your death he knocked on my door…..he punched me and told me that he hated me for not forcing you to become a demon. That it was my fault he didn’t have a mother any longer.” Before Ruth knew it a few tears fell down her face. “But where is he?” her voice breaking Chthons heart “I don’t know sweetheart. he ran out and never came back. He was a grown man so I had to let him go. His eyes told me that he truly did hate me for not making you a demon.”

“He’s your son Chthon. He coudln’t hate you.” Chthons frown deepend “Honey, Nero was your baby. Our other two children loved us equally but Nero was always your boy. He needed to hate me to cope with not having you around. He hated me because he had to.” Tears started pouring out of Ruth, jerking at Chthons heart until it sank as low as it could go. As much as he hoped it wouldn’t happen he knew she’d soon ask about Nero. He had always been by her side growing up. “I’m so sorry…I was so selfish and dumb”

“Don’t say that Ruth. Please don’t cry. I’ll find him. He’ll come home to see you. How about after a month or so you and I can hunt for him. I would say now but I just can’t take you out and risk you getting hurt by some demon who doesn’t know me or is young enough to try and oppose me. Please stop crying and I promise in a month or so we will hunt him together and we will find him. I’m sure Abraxas would even help. He already adores you.” Ruth nodded “I understand, we just need to find him so I can say sorry for being stupid and convince him it wasn’t your fault. It was only mine”

“shhh” Chthon said as he rubbed her back and held in tears that tried to erupt out. He knew if he cried it would only increase how heartbroken Ruth was. Charles knocked on the door and said “breakfast is ready”

“we’re coming soon” Chthon yelled back. Ruth wiped her eyes. “lets eat with them and go home. I really want to go back to the castle. I won’t cry over Nero any longer. You have always been a man of your word. If you say you’ll find him for me then you’ll find him so I can appologize and hopefuly get him to forgive me enough to come around again”

“Ruth, that boy will come running home once he knows you’re there.”

They pulled their clothes on and headed downstairs. They could hear Victoria and Thatcher giggling and Ruth’s lip quivered. He hated the heartbroken look on her face. He didn’t want her to blame herself. He didn’t blame her for choosing a mortal life and had lived for every moment he had had with her. They sat down at the table and Sophie gave him a quizzical look. He shook his head and she let it go. Charles and Abraxas came in with the plates and sat them down.

“Are you okay grandma?” Charles asked and Chthon shot him a dark look. He wasn’t intimidated even a little.

“I’m fine honey, just having an off morning. Don’t worry about it. Please eat.” She said warmly and Charles took his place next Sophie.

They ate in silence, Ruth picking at her food slowly. Chthon sighed and quickly cleaned his plate. “I think we are going home today.” He said.

“Are you sure? You are all welcome to stay as long as you like.” Sophie replied, reaching across the table and taking Ruth’s hand.

“We’ll be back, I promise, but Chthon is right. I’m still recovering from my change and from being brought back to life. My body is still reaclimating itself. I’m also feeling a bit sad, but I don’t want you to worry. It has nothing to do with any of you.” Ruth answered and gave Sophie’s hand a reassuring squeeze.

“Is it okay if I stay a little longer?” Abraxas asked hopefully.

“Of course you can sweety. Stay as long as you like, but your father and I will be heading home in a couple of hours. Charles, Sophie, please feel free to visit us. Abraxas can show you our home.”

“Thank you mother…I mean Ruth…I mean…” Abraxas looked embarrassed.

“Call me whatever you like Abraxas. I’ll be happy no matter what name you have for me.”

They finished breakfast and Ruth spent some more time with the children. They showed her their toys and the drawings they had done. She smiled and complimented them on everything. They hugged and jumped on her and she reveled in their joy. She loved them more than she could fully express. When it was time to go they cried and begged her to stay and she promised to visit again soon.

“Thank you for giving it to my dad.” Charles said as he hugged her and then Chthon.

“You tell me is he starts bullying people again.” She replied with a smile that made him laugh. It was funny that someone that came up to his dad’s sternum could so easily intimidate him.

“You two be careful.” Sophie said as she took her turn hugging them.

“Don’t worry, no one messes with me.” Chthon said with a wolfish grin. Sophie giggled and patted his cheek.

“Oh yes because you are so scary.”

“Hey now, I can be very intimidating.”

“I’m sure you can” Sophie kissed his cheek then Chthon left carrying Ruth. Chthon took her home quickly, going straight to their room. “Maybe if I read to you it’ll get your mind off Nero.”

“That would be nice.” Ruth said, trying for happy but not quite making it. Chthon grabbed the book they had already started “Will you lay on me Ruth?”

“I planned on it.” Chthon rested against the headboard then Ruth laid down on his chest. His soothing voice soon had her relaxed and into the story. He read to Ruth the rest of the day, only stopping to eat or get something to drink. A little over a week later Ruth and Chthon were dancing in the room Chthon had cleared out when Ruth was alive the first time so they’d have plenty of space to dance. He twirled her around and back into him making Ruth laugh happily. He loved how happy dancing made his wife. It’s why he designated a room for it so they could do whatever dances they wanted without fear of breaking things or people getting in the way.

Suddenly a young man burst through the doors and they turned to see Nero, tears dripping down his face. “Nero!”

“Mother!” they cried at the same time. They ran to eachother, meeting somwhat in the middle. He lifted her into a hug and cried even harder “I heard you were brought back from the dead but I didn’t believe it. I’ve missed you so badly mom.” Nero fell to his knees still holding his mother tight. “I’ve missed you too baby. Your father and I were going to hunt you down in a few more weeks after he was sure I was alright” Nero pulled back to look into her eyes “what do you mean? Are you ok?”

“I became a demon so I wouldn’t die again. You can’t tell?” Nero pulled Ruth against him again sobbing violently. When his tears died down enough to speak he said “I was too distracted but now that you say somthing I can tell. Thank you….thank you for doing this. I couldn’t lose you again. I could barely handle it the first time.”

“are you coming back home to live?” Nero stood cradling his mother and looked at his father with shame in his face. “would you let me back in dad?” Chthon walked over hugging them “You’re always welcome here son. No matter what you do I’ll always love you.” The three stood there for awhile until Nero could get himself to put his mom down.

“I’ll need to go get my wife and two daughters”

“You have a family?” Ruth said almost tearing up again at the thought. “Yes, they are wonderful. ¬†You’ll love my family mom, I’m sure of it.”

“why didn’t you bring them now?”

“Incase it was a demon playing a sick joke on me. I would’ve really broke down again and I couldn’t have my wife and girls seeing me like that. Now that I know you’re really among the living again I’ll bring them. It’ll take me three days because I….I was trying to get as far away from my father as possible. I only stopped there because I met Lisanna.”

“I can’t wait to hear the story of how you two met son.”

“I’ll tell it as soon as she’s here. They are all dieing to meet you. I’ve told them many stories about you.”

“Hurry back son” Nero turned and ran off again. He didn’t want to leave his mother but his wife and daughters were anxiously waiting. Ruth started crying again so Chthon picked her up. “lets go relax in the hot spring.” Ruth nodded and he carried her down. The two of them stripped and got in. “I can’t believe you’re actually getting in here naked with me”

“I’ll chase off anybody who comes. You’re so sad I just wanted to get you in here and hold you.”

“I’m more happy than sad. I’m glad he has a wife and two daughters. Thank you for forgiving him Chthon”

“Like I said, I knew what that really was. The only way he could handle not having you was hating me. I was happy for my son to hate me if it helped him deal with your loss. I did things I wasn’t proud of through my grief. You’re a hard woman to lose Ruth.”

“I put such a burden on you my love.” He opened his mouth to speak and she pressed her fingers against his lips. “You always put me first Chthon, never once complaining or thinking of what you wanted. What I did was selfish.”

He grabbed her hand and kissed her fingers before pressing her palm against his chest. “Then I will be equally as selfish now. I am keeping you no matter what happens. I will not let you get away from me again, even if you hate me later, I will hold onto you.”

“I could never hate you.”

He crushed her to him, his lips meeting hers. He poured every ounce of love he had into his kiss, letting her feel how much she meant to him. He couldn’t help but become aroused at her softness and warmth. He allowed their lips to part, leaving her gasping and flushed. “At this rate you will never get any real rest. I’ve been acting like some sort of wild animal.” He said huskily and she giggled as she let her fingers move lovingly over his chest.

“It’s okay, you can have many all day every day if it will make you happy.”

“You may regret those words Ruth because I plan on pushing your limit for pleasure. I want you begging me to give you just a moment to breathe.” He whispered in her ear and she swallowed.

“Bring it on.” She managed to say.

“Not now, I want your imagination running wild.” She blushed and he kissed her cheek. “I love you Ruth and no matter what ai always will.”

“I love you too.” She kissed his chest then relaxed into him, trying to block the images playing through her head. He wasn’t playing fair, but it still made her happy. He lifted her out of the hot spring an hour later and dressed quickly. He waited patiently for her to pull her clothes on, his eyes wandering over her. She smiled and he lifted her into his arms.

“You need to eat something. How does fruit salad sound?”

“Delicious, I’m starving.”

He took Ruth into the kitchen and set her on the counter while he prepared fruit salad. “do you want any help?”

“No, I just want you to sit there and look beautiful. You’re doing an amazing job by the way” Ruth giggled “you’re as cute as ever Chthon” He smiled, looking deep into her eyes for a moment before continuing to make the fruit salad. When it was done he said “lets go eat outside and enjoy the warmth of the sun” He handed Ruth the bowl so he could carry her. They sat down amongst the flowers and ate together. “I can’t wait for Nero to get back. I wonder if he married a human or a demon.”

“The only heavy female scent I smelled on him was demon so it’s probably a demon woman. I’m just glad he’s had a family to be happy with. I bet those girls are stunning with a grandmother like you” Ruth gave Chthon a quick kiss “I love how you still say such sweet things to me all the time.”

“I can’t help it. They just pour out of me because of how much my heart and mind are always full of you.”

“does Lucys children ever come around?”

“No, they grew tired of my melancholy after about a year. They said that living in the past was foolish and they weren’t going to stick around to watch me throw my life away because you weren’t in it because they didn’t want themselves to break down with me. I can understand that though. They lost their mother then their grandmother. It’s amazing how strong those two are. They probably would’ve stuck around if I hadn’t become such an ass to everybody. You would’ve hated how I was while you were gone.”

“I could never hate you Chthon. All of it was my fault anyway. I do wish you would’ve kept living though.”

“After having you in my life there just wasn’t going back to how life was before.”

“You had our children and grandchildren to live for though.”

“I don’t want you crying again. Can we dance some more after we eat?”

“Of course my love, I’m sorry I keep bringing up sad things. I just want to know what all has been going on. I just don’t see the people that used to fill the castle and I wonder.”

“Like I said, I became an ass. You wouldn’t have recognized me”

“Lets go dance my love.” Chthon picked up Ruth and went inside. Chthon was happy Ruth wasn’t getting tired of him totting her all the time. He just needed her close. He set her down in the dancing room and went to turn on some music but Ruth stopped him “please sing for me” He smiled then walked back over to her. He sang and hummed to Ruth as he floated around the room with her. He wondered if his only daughters children would hear of Ruth too and come back.

“Nigel stayed.” She suddenly said, interrupting his singing.

“He surprised me. I thought for sure he would leave.”

“Why?”

“Because we got into an argument that came to blows.” He looked so ashamed and turned his eyes away from her. She cupped his cheek, making him look at her again.

“What happened?”

“I…I told him I was going to kill myself.” She covered her mouth in shock. “He became very angry, calling me an idiot among other things. I hit him and he hit me back. We fought until I broke down in tears. He sat with me of the longest time, his nose bleeding and covered in cuts from being slammed into furniture. He didn’t even hold it against me.”

“I’m so sorry.” She said as tears welled up in her eyes.

“Please don’t cry Ruth. Me wanting to kill myself was selfish. I just didn’t want to go on without you, but Nigel showed me how stupid I was being in saying such hurtful things. He reminded me of our family and that they would hate me if I left them after you died.” He wiped at the tear that rolled down her cheek. “Don’t cry, seeing your tears hurts my heart.”

“I am so glad he stayed with you.”

“He just went on with life as if we had never fought. He made me eat even when I didn’t want to, forced me to get out of bed when I tried to lock myself away. He broke my door down twice. I owe him so much.” He brushed his nose against hers then kissed her. “Please don’t blame yourself Ruth. I was in denial and angry and sad, not angry at you by the way just at the situation.”

“I love you so much Chthon, you have to know that. You are such an amazing husband and father. Thank you for staying alive, for watching over our family. You must promise me that the word suicide will never enter your mind again, no matter what the circumstances.”

“I promise.”

“Good.” They danced a little longer, his arms holding her as close as he could. She rested her head against his chest and savored the sound of his heart beat. She could get lost in that calming, rhythmic sound.

After awhle longer Ruth asked softly “can we find Nigel so I can thank him”

“Of course” He lifted Ruth into his arms and walked around the castle, calling Nigel. He came running “yes, is anything wrong?” Ruth got out of Chthons arms and hugged Nigel. “Thank you so much for being there for Chthon. I’m so sorry I left you guys.” Nigel hugged back tightly. “Don’t even think about it Ruth. I consider Chthon my best friend. He took me in and turned my life around for the better before you came along. I was headed down a¬†very dark path but Chthon redirected me and showed me how good life could be in the light. When his heart found darkness I owed it to him to keep him in the light and among the living as much as I could. He acts like he owes me but I’d say things are even now. Besides, if that fool had offed himself he wouldn’t be around now to see you again and I wouldn’t have gotten the pleasure either since he wouldn’t have been around to save you from those disgusting demons. I missed you so much too Ruth. You are the brightest light I’ve ever known and I’m so happy you’re a demon now.”

“still thank you Nigel.” He kissed ruths head. “Thank me by doing what you’re doing now. It’s nice to see Chthon so cheerful again. He’s back to the man I knew when you walked among us before. I love you like a brother Chthon” Nigel hugged Chthon then said “I need to go back to work on somthing for my son if you don’t mind.”

“of course we don’t” Chthon said a little choked up. A few days passed and Nero came back with his wife and two girls. Ruth had pictured children but they were both full grown, beautiful women. They very much resembled the woman holding hands with Nero.Ruth hugged his wife then the two younger women. “welcome all of you.” Neros wife Lisanna spoke “It’s so wonderful to meet you Ruth. You meant so much to Nero. He’s missed you deeply. Not that he’d admit it but to this day he has moments where he brakes down and cries for you. Thank you for welcoming us all into your home Ruth and Chthon. Is it true you were resurected for the sex trade?”

“Yes but Chthon found out quickly I was brought back to life and saved me before anything too bad happened.”

“I hope you gave those bastards what they deserve dad”

“You know I did.”

“Good, I would’ve done it myself if you haven’t. I’m grateful to have you back mom but I don’t see how they dared try to bring you into that.”

“Lets just talk happy. What’re your names?” Ruth said looking at the girls. The taller one spoke “My name is Felicia and my younger sister is Diana. I’m happy to finally meet my grandma and grandpa. Diana is too but she’s a little shy around new people.” Diana blushed and Ruth said “no need to be shy Diana. You seem like a beautiful and wonderful young lady. I look forward to getting to know you three and seeing the man my son Nero has become.”

“I’m still the same as you left me mom”

Chapter Five

“You’re more thick of build than when I last saw you. You must be a hard worker.”

“He is, he does so much.” Lisanna said with a smile.

“How is his temper?”

“Well, he’s never lost it with me or the girls, but he has lost it with others. Especially other men.” Ruth turned her gaze to Chthon.

“What did I do?” He asked.

“Your possessiveness seems to have rubbed off on all the men in our family.” She replied and he just shrugged.

“It should diminish with time, hopefully.”

“Hopefully…probably never.” She kissed his cheek and he smiled. “Well come on children, lets go sit in the library and visit. Chthon would you mind making some tea for us love?”

“Would you like me to make some zucchini bread as well?”

“If you wouldn’t mind. I’m sure they are hungry after such a long journey.”

Chthon kissed her cheek and headed off into the kitchen while Ruth lead their guests to the library. Nero seemed a bit confused about being in the library. No one had ever been allowed in there before. “When did dad start letting people in here?” He asked as he took a seat next to his wife.

“After I came home.” She replied and took a seat in the chair across from them.

“How strange. The only time I remember being let in here was when I was with you. Other than that this place was off limits.”

“You know how your father was about his books. He worked hard to get so many. They were his prized possession.”

“But they aren’t anymore.” Chthon said as entered the library with a tray in his hands. “Your mother is more beautiful and more important to me than pieces of paper wrapped in animal skin. Everyone is welcome to come in here and read. You may also borrow what you wish as long as you promise to bring them back. The only ones that are off limits still are the spell books.”

Chthon sat the tray down and handed them each a cup. Ruth stood so he could sit then took her place on his lap. She was most comfortable when she could be close to him. “So, are either of you girls married?” Ruth asked her granddaughters.

“I am, but Diana is not. Her shyness gets the best of her.” Felicia said and grabbed her sister’s hand. “She has a lot of young men who really like her, but she tends to avoid them.”

“Don’t worry about that sweetheart. Someday you will find the right man for you so don’t give in until he shows up.” Ruth said with a bright smile.

“Thank you grandma.” Diana replied softly, her cheeks turning red.

“so then why isn’t your husband here Felicia?”

“We’re going to stay where we are because all of his familys there. I just wanted to meet you. We’re going to visit frequently so don’t worry about missing us. He didn’t come to meet you guys because he has a bad habit of hogging my attention. He thought it best that he stayed so I could get to know you guys uninhibited. He’ll come when I return for a visit.”

“aw, well I’m sad you aren’t staying but I’m glad you came to meet us. You two are very beautiful and so is your wife Nero.” The four smiled then Ruth asked “so where do your parents live Lisanna?”

“Near me but I haven’t seen them since I started dating your son.”

“why not?”

“They…well….” Lisanna looked afraid to say it so Nero cleared his throat “they didn’t like that she wanted to be with a half breed. They didn’t think I was good enough for their daughter and dad I will kick your ass personally if you go and do anything to them. They aren’t even aware that I’m your son. I didn’t want to intimidate them into letting me be with their daughter and Lisanna just wanted them out of our lives if they coudlnt’ accept me.”

“It’s true, don’t make a fuss out of it. I’ve been very happy without them. You two raised a wonderful man. He’s very sweet to me and has always made me happy. It’s their loss they rejected him because he has human blood mixed with his demon blood.” Lissana said then her daughter Felicia spoke “that’s partially why we’re so excited to meet you. We haven’t had grandparents until now.” They chatted for awhile, Nero and Lisanna catching them up on their lives. When it was nearing dinner Chthon spoke “You should pick rooms. Nero, your old room is still available if you want that with your wife and Diana you ahve your pick of any room. Even ones already taken. You see a room you want you tell me. I’ll kick whoever out if they have it.” Diana giggled lightly “Thank you”

“If things ever go bad with your husband Felicia you’re always welcome here”

“Thank you.” They walked around until Diana found a room she liked. “Ok, we will all go shopping tomorrow so we can fill it with things unless you’d prefer whatever you owned in your old home.”

“I’d like to go shopping with you guys” Chthon smiled happily. They all went into the dining hall and sat except Chthon and Ruth who went to cook together. As they started Ruth asked “where’s Abraxas been? Ever since he stayed a few days in the village he keeps dissapearing.” Chthon smiled “You should practice using your enhanced senses. I knwo you atleast got that. He’s going to see a girl. When he got home after his stay he smelled heavily of a human female. I plan on tracking the scent next time we’re in the village to see who if he doesn’t bring her to meet us soon” Ruth smiled “I’m so glad, he’s going to make some girl very happy. We did well at raising our boys. They are men to be proud of.”

“Yeah, I really miss Noah.”

“I do too. Sadly there just isn’t any seeing Lucy or Noah ever again. I do hope Lucys daughters come back though. It would make me very happy to see the woman they’ve become. I bet they are just as beautiful as Neros daughters”

“Like I said, how can they not be with a grandmother like you”

“Your flattery isn’t going to get you in my pants.” She said as she chopped vegetables for salad.

“You wound me. I am simply speaking the truth.”

“I’m sure that little thing at the hot spring was just a joke then?”

“I never joke when it comes to making love to you. I meant every word.” He leaned in close and brushed his nose against her ear so goose bumps crawled up her arms. “You can’t resist me at all can you.” He whispered.

She pulled back and just looked at him. “It is not wise to challenge your wife.” She continued chopping as he cooked steak and mashed potatoes.

“Are you saying you are going to resist me?”

“Oh yes, with all my strength. You are going to have to fight for what you want dearest love.”

“I have angered you haven’t I?”

She shook her head and smiled up at him. “Quite the opposite. I am looking forward to seeing how you plan on wooing me.”

She finished her salad then waited patiently for him to finish what he was doing. She pulled out plates and helped him dish out the food. They smiled as they heard everyone talking in the dining room. They carried the food out, making sure everyone had a plate before taking a seat and eating.

“This food is delicious. I can never get my steaks to taste like this.” Nero said as he studied his food, tryng to determine what his father had done to make them so good.

“I think it is a universal law that you are not supposed to be able to cook as good as me or your mother.” Chthon said.

“Not fair.” Nero sighed and took another bite. “So not fai.”

The women laughed and Ruth reached across the table to pat his hand. “Cook your food the way you want to cook it. You don’t have to be like us.”

“Man this food makes me miss home.”

They finished dinner and Diana asked if Ruth would read to them. She smiled at the young woman and hurried to the library while Chthon and Nero cleared the table and rinsed the dishes. “I really am sorry about the things I said to you dad. It was wrong of me. You were in so much more pain that me and I just added to it by telling you I hated you.”

“You are so much like me, yet so much like your mother at the same time.” He squeezed his son’s shoulder. “I was never angry with you. We were both in pain and we dealt with it in our own way. My way was a lot worse than yours, believe me. Your mother is back for good though, she’s never leaving us again.”

“It’s still such a shock seeing her alive. When I heard she was back! I was sure people were mistaken and that maybe you had finally taken another wife that looked like her or something, but a part of me hoped the rumors were true. I am so glad they were.”

“You should know that I could never marry another. Your mother is my everything. Now, lets get back to the women so your mother can read. I think Diana is really looking forward to hearing a story.”

Nero and Chthon started up the stairs as Abraxas came in the door. Chthon grinned “go on up Nero and tell them to start without me.”

“alright dad” Nero finished running up then took off down the hall towards the library. “dad?” Abraxas asked. “That’s my oldest son Nero. He heard of his mother coming home and has come to live with us, along with his wife and youngest daughter. His oldest daughter is returning back to where they are from after visitng for awhile.”

“I’m so happy for you dad. Do you think he’ll be alright if I call Ruth mom?”

“You are just as much her son as he is. If he gives you lip about it tell your mother or me ok?”

“Ok”

“I stopped because you haven’t told me about this girl your seeing Abraxas.” Abraxas blushed “how’d you know?”

“Her scent is on you every time you come back son”

“Its hard to say what we are but we love eachother. I was hoping to make us official tomorrow by seriously asking her out.”

“Have you told her your a demon? I can smell she’s human”

“No”

“You shouldn’t ask her to date you until she knows. It’s dishonest to date her if she isn’t aware you’re not human son”

“what if she gets scared of me? I love her dad. I can see such an amazing future with her.”

“She’ll have to know at sompoint anyway Abraxas.”

“I guess, I’ll tell her before I ask her to be my girlfriend then. How’d you tell Ruth?”

‘I just came out with it. All you can do is be honest and clear.”

“Now tomorrow is stressful”

“Don’t be stressed. I’m sure she will be fine with it, just as Ruth was.”

“I need to go to bed dad. I wore myself out today”

“Goodnight son, please bring her to meet us soon. Ruth wants to meet her too”

“I will dad. Tell mom I love her” Chthon smiled “I will” Chthon went up the stairs happily and hoped it really would work out for Abraxas. He entered the library and picked Ruth up so he could sit with her in his lap. She read until the girls could barely keep their eyes open. Nero picked up his wife and walked to their room. “do you rememeber where the room you chose is Diana?”

“Yes mam” she answered sleepily and left. Ruth then said “We’ll show you to a furnished guest room Felicia.”

“Thank you two.” Chton walked down the halls until they were in front of a room Felicia could stay in “sweet dreams” they all said then parted. “Abraxas says he loves you. I saw him come in. It’s why Nero came before me”

“did you ask him about the girl?”

“He’s going to tell her he’s a demon tomorrow and ask her out.”

“Good for him, is he nervous”

“extremely”

“were you nervous”

“Oh yes, I had fallen in love so quick you could’ve snapped my heart in two right then if you had panicked on me.”

“I would have never taken you as the nervous type. You were so confident when you approached me.”

“Until you turned those tear filled eyes on me. I was completely lost in that moment and all I wanted to do was keep you from ever crying again.” He walked past their room, making Ruth confused. He headed downstairs and outside into the cool night air.

“Where are you taking me?” She asked and he just stared straight ahead. “Chthon, hello.” She waved her hand in front of his face and a smile tugged at his lips. She crossed her arms and huffed.

He walked along the perimeter of the castle, heading into the woods at the back. He stopped when he came to a deep, dark hole and she looked at him questioningly. “Hold on tight.” He said and she wrapped her arms around his neck just before he jumped in. She squeezed her eyes closed and held her breath as the air rushed around them. He landed easily on his feet and continued walking. She opened her eyes, amazed that she was able to see clearly on the pitch blackness. It was overly quiet underground and it felt a little suffocating. He took her down a wide tunnel that opened up into a cave.

“Where are we?”

“You’ll see.” He sat her gently on her feet then forced the wall on the opposite side to open. He grabbed her hand and pulled her into another cave. She gasped in wonder as moonlight filtered in through the open ceiling. It was like a world within a world. There were trees and the sounds of birds. There was a large waterfall that fell down into a large pool of water with steam rolling off of it. Fireflies danced along the bank and through the forest, looking like fairy lights. He closed the wall behind them then lifted her into his arms and carried her down a hill to the bank of the pool. She could feel the warmth coming off the water.

“This is so amazing.” She said as he sat down cross legged with her in his lap.

“I happened upon this place by accident. I couldn’t believe it had been right behind the castle the whole time.”

“How did you find it?”

“I had been drinking a little to much one night and fell in that hole. I’ve never been so glad to be a demon. Back then the wall was open, but I sealed it off so no one else could find this place. I’m glad I get to show it to you.” She felt herself tearing up and kissed him. He smiled against her lips and she pulled back to see his look of triumph. “I guess this means I win our little battle of wills?” He said with a grin. She didn’t know what to say she was so shocked.

“Not yet.” She finally said and go off his lap. She slipped off her shoes then pulled her clothes slowly off. He licked his lips and reached out to touch her, but she stepped easily out of the way. She waded into the water, glancing briefly back at him before pushing off into deeper water.

“Hey, that’s not fair.”

“I know, neither was you bringing me here.” She splashed him, laughing happily even though she knew he was going to get her back.

Chthon took his clothes off too and followed Ruth into the water. He swam after her but she kept swimming away and laughing. “fine” Chthon said before suddenly the water pushed Ruth into his arms “you cheat!” Chthon chuckled “You should try to move the water. You might be able to if you try”

“You’d probably laugh at me if I failed”

“I wont, there’s no guarantee you can but that magic runs deep in my blood so theres a good chance you can”

“what would I try?” Chthon thought for a moment. He was trying to think of somthing simple and finally decided. “Just try pushing the water like I did. Try to do it slightly to see if it’s in you now. I can help you get really good at whatever skills you obtained from my blood”

“Like you did with the kids”

“Yep” Chthon said, his tone heavy with lust since he was holding his naked wife. He got lost looking at her body until water splashed him in the face. He looked up to see Ruth smiling. “That’s great. I knew you’d get the ability to manipulate water. You did it already just as a mage so it would’ve been crazy if you didn’t get my water control from me.”

“I think I’m winning”

“I think you are too” Chthon said huskily. “This is what you get for being so smug in your abilities to get me in bed. Then you go and make me think you’re doing somthing sweet when in reality you’re after whats between my legs.” Her words weighed in his heart “are you upset..I had already thought of taking you here Ruth…” Chthon said, looking like he was fighting a frown. “why are you so sensitive Chthon. I’m still playing with you. We used to tease all the time and now tonight you’ve gotten all sad on me twice.”

“I’m sorry, I’m just so grateful and happy to have you back. I just can’t have you upset with me. I need you and your beautiful smile”

“well I need you to be able to play with me. I’ve never hidden sad feelings from you and I wont start now. You’ll know if I get upset Chthon. So quit frowning and try to win me over unless you admit defeat.” Chthon put his mouth up to Ruths ear so she felt every movement as he talked dirty to her. He went through every step of the things he wanted to do to her and how much he’d enjoy filling her with his sperm. Ruth got hotter and hotter and tried to push out of his arms but he wouldn’t let her go. Ruth moaned “You win, You can have me” Chthon gave a wolfish grin. “I love you” he said in a voice thick with lust.

“Chthon please.” She whimpered as his mouth moved against her. She tangled her fingers in his hair and tried to pull him up. He growled at her and pinned her wrists next to her. Her back arched off the ground as he devoured her and she screamed her pleasure. Tears slid into her hair as she went completely limp, nearly driven into unconsciousness. He was suddenly above her, his eyes glowing a soft yellow.

“Don’t pass out, I’m not finished yet.” He said, his voice a husky growl.

“I can’t take anymore.”

“Yes you can baby.”

He thrust into her and pulled one of her legs up to rest on his shoulder so he could go as hard and as deep as was possible. He leaned forward to kiss her, his hips taking on a fast needy pace. She raked her fingernails over his shoulders, exciting him further. “You’re always so hot baby. It drives me crazy.” He whispered, making her blush. Her mouth dropped open in a soundless scream as she clamped down around him. He shook with the force of his release, his hoarse cry filling the cavern. He lowered her leg to the ground and his lips found hers, his kiss gentle and loving. He trailed kisses over her chin and down her neck to her shoulder where he bit and sucked at her. She lay there, dazed and drowsy and blissfully content. He moved lower, making her shiver as he slid out of her. His hands massaged her thighs as he stroked his tongue over her once more so she cried out his name. He lay next to her and pulled her into his arms. “How do you feel?” He asked, sounding smug.

“Amazing and far to weak to hurt you for sounding so victorious.” He chuckled and tipped her head back, kissing her softly. “Honestly though, I feel like I’m in heaven.”

“Rest while you because we have all night.”

Her head snapped up and she looked at him with wide eyed shock. “There’s no way we can do that again. I don’t even think I can walk after the first time.” He rolled her beneath him, pinning her hands above her head with one hand as he let his other drift over her. She moaned as her body responded to to his touch, needing him all over again.

“Are you sure you don’t want me to make love to you again?”

“You don’t play fair at all. I can’t help but need you. It’s like a conditioned response.” He slid his hand between her legs, rubbing her until she orgasmed again.

“I love that look, it’s so beautiful and arousing.” He kissed her again then moved so he was next to her and pulled her back into his arms. “Go ahead and sleep baby, I promise I’ll let you.” She was out before he finished his sentence, making him smile.

“I love you Ruth” was all he said before drifting off himself. They slept until lunchtime they were both so worn from the passionate night they shared. Ruth woke and rubbed her eyes. She smiled as she looked over at her peaceful looking husband who seemed to have a death grip on her. It was still as if he was afraid she’d just disappear over night. Ruth was very hungry but just laid still, enjoying his embrace. She wasn’t sure how much moving she could do anyway. Just as she expected she was very sore and not looking forward to her husbands gloating even though it was very cute to see him so pleased with himself. Especially because she knew it was only because he enjoyed making her feel good.

Her stomach growled loudly, actually waking Chthon. Ruth laughed “I’m sorry” Chthon kissed ruth, lingering awhile to enjoy the sensation. “You should”ve woken me if you were hungry Ruth”

“You looked so comfortable and I enjoy laying with you.”

“You know I’ll lay with you all day if you’ll let me so there’s no need for you to lay there hungry.” Chthon picked Ruth up and started walking back to where they fell down. Ruth hugged Chthon “I love you so much” He smiled down at her “Are you sore?”

“You knwo I am” Chthon chuckled, his sweet smile turning into his smug one. “You stop that” He chuckled again “I love you too. I enjoyed last night so much. I want to push your limit much more often. Making love to my beautiful wife is so amazing. You’ll last longer and longer until maybe I could have the joy of not having to stop all night.” Ruth kissed Chthons cheek “You are so naughty”

“Only for you” His smug smile turning sweet again. He stopped when they were under the hole and just gazed into Ruths eyes. They got lost in eachother until Ruths stomach growled again making them both laugh. Chthon jumped from wall to wall up the hole they fell down. Once they got to the top he easily jumped out. “that was amazing. We should go back somtime”

“as long as I get to make love to you every time we go.” Chthon said before kissing Ruths head. “I’ll just go without you then if I can’t go with you and you be good”

“You can’t go without me. It’ll only open for me if you remember.”

“Oh yeah, your hand thing. Unfairness again.”

“Well I’d work on that with you but that is somthing self taught so it most likely isn’t in you now. You could learn it if you want. I ahve eternity to practice and teach you. I ahve no fear of you going there without me regardless. I’m glued to your side forever now. I can’t handle you being out of my sight very well.”

“That’s my fault so I’ll deal with the consequences. I love being by your side anyway. You make me so happy and make me feel so loved Chthon”

“You are the only woman for me Ruth. The only woman I’ve ever truly loved. Well I loved my daughter too but you know what I’m saying”

“I do” Chthon sighed. “It still makes me think of our wedding every time you say I do.”

“Our wedding was so beautiful. It took you so long to decide on what color you wanted me to wear. We barely got it together in time”

“I’m sorry”

“Don’t be, I didn’t mind”

Everyone was eating lunch when they returned. All eyes turned to them and Ruth blushed and covered her face in embarrassment. “You shouldn’t cover up such a beautiful face.” Chthon whispered in her ear, his warm breath against her skin giving her goosebumps. “Please uncover your face love.” She dropped her hands as he sat down with her on his lap.

“Are you two hungry?” Abraxas asked and Ruth nodded. He jumped up and ran to the kitchen, coming back with two sandwiches. “I hope this is okay.”

“Thank you sweety.” She finally managed to say and he smiled. She moved to the chair next to her husband and they ate as they talked.

She grew less embarrassed the longer they sat there, her blush finally disappearing all together. She enjoyed the laughter of her family as Nero told them about the day he had met Lisanna. He had been perched up in a tree when she had happened upon him. She had called up to him, startling him so he fell out of the tree and landed on his back. She had been shocked he wasn’t dead, but had laughed at the expression on his face.

“He looked so lost and confused, like he had never seen a woman before. I laughed so hard I fell on the ground next to him.” Lisanna said and Nero turned red.

“I was just surprised. I had never seen someone as pretty as you and you didn’t run away screaming when the fall didn’t kill me. It was strange.” He replied.

“You looked so young, like a little lost boy. It was cute.”

“Come on Lisanna, you’re embarrassing me.” She laughed and he couldn’t help but smile.

They finished eating and Abraxas said he had to leave, but that he would be back in time for dinner. Ruth gave him a quick kiss on the cheek then brushed the crumbs off his shirt. “Thanks mom.” He said as he took off.

“What would the rest of you like to do today?” Ruth asked as she helped clear plates.

“We could always explore the woods around the castle.” Diana said softly.

“If that’s what you want then we’ll do it.” She looked delighted and was practically running when they were finally done washing dishes. Chthon laced his fingers with Ruth’s as they watched their family enjoy being outside. He remembered doing this with their children all the time and had not known how much he missed it until now. Nero had always been so adventurous, dangerously so. Ruth always pointed out how he was just like his father. Abraxas was the same, climbing up onto high places and reaching for something to far away. He had broken his arm twice trying to get close to a bird nest to see the hatchlings and no matter how many times Chthon reprimanded him, he just did it again.

“are you considering any more kids yet?” Chthon asked softly. Ruth laughed “I’d love more kids with you Chthon.” Ruth said giving her husband a kiss on the cheek. He hugged her happily then said “lets give you a few more months first. You’ve been brought back from the dead and turned into a demon in a short span of time. Even demon bodies can die if put through too much so after I’m sure you’re stable we’ll have babies until you say enough.”

“Then I guess we will fill the castle.” Chthon chuckled “sounds good to me.” They sat out there happily until dinner was approaching. Ruth and Chthon went inside to cook while everybody else just enjoyed themselves. They decided to make spaghetti and garlic bread. Chthon worked on the spaghetti while Ruth was preparing the bread for the oven. They heard their children and grandchildren come in and sit down. Chthon smiled “Abraxas is back and he has the girl that’s been keeping him busy”

“Oh I want to see! I can’t believe she came here!”

“well I asked him to bring her if she’d come”

“I want to meet her.”

“well go and I’ll take care of the bread and spaghetti.”

“Oh no, it’s fine. I know you want to meet her too. I’ll meet her with you. Besides, all the bustling indicates everybody else is meeting her. Her voice is so cute ”

“can you hear what she’s saying?”

“yeah, why?” Chthon smiled “you’re finally making use of your demon senses. You couldn’t hear what was going on in there with your human ears.”

“I didn’t even notice.”

“It should all be coming natural soon if you let it. Just let me know if it begins to overwhelm you and you need practice dialing it down.” Once everything was made Ruth and Chthon steadily brought out plates then Ruth sat down and smiled at the young woman sitting next to Abraxas. She looked to be in her late twenties with long strands of curly auburn hair. Her eyes were a very light brownwith small amounts of blue near her iris. “My name’s Ruth what’s yours?”

“I’m Adette, it’s really nice to meet you. You’re Abraxas’s mom?”

“I am and the man beside me is his dad. We’ve been really wantign to meet you.”

“well he coudln’t invite me without being honest and he didn’t decide to be honest until today. I have no problem with it.”

“That’s good to hear. I didn’t either, it’s silly anyone does.”

“aren’t you a demon too?”

“I used to be a human but I changed to be with my husband forever.”

“You can do that?”

“Yep”

“That’s cool” was all Adette said in response before they all finished their food. Abraxas cleared his throat “can Adette spend the night?” Chthon had to stifle a laugh “you are a grown man. What you do in your room is your own business and she’s a lovely girl. I hope to see her around here a lot”

“I’ll show you to my room then.” Abraxas said a bit nervously then hugged his mom and dad before walking away with Adette. “will you read again tonight grandma?” Diana asked “I’ll read to you every night. Lets all go up to the library”

“I’ll take care of the dishes mom. The rest of you go” Lisanna said. Everybody left quickly and settled in the library to hear what happened next in the book. Ruths heart was beating happily as she sat in Chthons lap and all eyes were turned to her eagerly. She opened the book and read to everybody just as she did the night before until the yawns started occuring frequently.

After everyone was in bed Ruth cuddled close to Chthon their bed. He stroked her hair and kissed her. He was never going to get enough of having her in his arms. He made sure to pay attention to every detail of her beautiful face, to every sound she made. He never wanted to forget anything. He wanted always make her happy, to see her beautiful heart warming smile.

“Am I really that beautiful?” She asked.

“Oh yes. You are more beautiful than anything in this world and every other world. You are so breath taking it is hard to look away from you. I feel so jealous when other men stare at you, it hits me right in the heart, a slicing burning jealousy.” He tangled his fingers in her soft hair and gently tugged to tip her head back. “Everything about you males me ache with my desire for you. Every night that you were gone I pictured your face perfectly, this lovely sweet face that brought me so much joy. Never forget how beautiful you are to me Ruth.”

“You have such a way with words.” She was very nearly moved to tears. She held them back so as not to worry him. She smiled happily and he held her tightly against him. “I am so happy for Abraxas. He deserves to have someone to love.”

“He’ll make a good husband if she lets him.” Chthon said.

“Now we just need to help Diana break out of her shell. She’s so shy.”

“Now that you mention it, I may have someone who can help with that. He’s an old childhood friend of mine. He lives across the ocean and is supposed to be visiting in a month with some friends of his.”

“What’s his name?”

“Aurel, nice guy. He took care of an orphan half breed. He’s very into plants.”

“Is he good looking?” He narrowed his eyes at her and she laughed. “I was just teasing silly. You’re the only man for me.”

“Yes, he’s good looking.” She laughed harder and he kissed her cheek.

“I love you so much Chthon, you make me so happy. I’m glad you’re back to happy, teasing you instead of acting like I’ll leave the moment you say something weird.” She wiped at the tears threatening to fall from her eyes. “Lets not tell Diana about him. I want her to meet him without any preconceived notions.”

“Sounds good.” He sighed and smiled down at her.

“What is it?” She asked and she brushed her fingers over his shadowed jaw.

“I am so happy right now, blindingly happy. Thank you for making me that way.” She smiled then kissed him, making his heart race with the joy he felt.

They slept soundly through the night. This time they actually woke in the morning and was there to greet everybody for breakfast. This morning a lot of other people that lived in the castle were there. Chthon smiled, happy to see some coming back. Towards the end even the people that were there tended to avoid him. Breakfast was already prepared so they just sat down to eat with their happily chattering family. Ruth smiled as she looked at Abraxas and Adette “Look how happy and cute those two look” she whispered to Chthon knowing with all the talk and how far they were sitting away Abraxas and Adette couldn’t hear them. “Yeah, she seemed to react to him being a demon just as you did.”

Chthon really liked this girl but couldn’t help but have slight worry she wouldn’t change into a demon for Abraxas and leave him a hollow husk like Ruth left him the first time. He held to the comfort that Ruth would help convince Adette if she said no. Ruth could explain to her how she regretted not doing it in the end and how happy she is now that she did it. He kept thinking those thoughts until his fear was chased away. Ruth wouldn’t let Adette make the same mistake.

After breakfast Abraxas took Adette to tour the castle. Felicia said her goodbyes because she needed to get back to her husband. “I’m proud of you Diana, we’ve never really been separated before. I almost expected you to ask to live with me since mom and dad are coming here.” Diana laughed “I’ll be fine, I count on you too much and I really need to become braver. I really like our grandparents and Uncle Abraxas. I like everybody I’ve met here.”

“Good, you better write me or I’ll come and kick your ass” That had both girls laughing. Felicia lingered when she hugged Ruth. “don’t leave my grandpa and dad again. They need you.”

“I never plan to” After that Felicia took off. She planned on bringing her husband to meet them soon. She felt sad to leave but she knew she was welcome back anytime she wanted to come. Chthon and Ruth had reminded her of that about a million time over the course of the visit. Felicia couldn’t wait to tell her husband everything that happened. Ruth, Chthon, Nero, Diana, and Lisanna went outside along with a few other people in the castle to just enjoy the day. The sound surrounded everybody with it’s warmth as they all laughed and played around with eachother. Ruth was so thankful for this second chance at life and planned on living it to it’s fullest.

~ The End ~

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