Author: Ranger's Only Girl PM
Dimitri's POV in Frostbite. Follows Dimitri as he accompanies Tasha to the same banquet Lissa takes Rose to. Chaos ensues as he tries to keep Adrian away from Rose while also talking to Tasha about being her guardian...read on to find out what happens!Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Dimitri B. & Rose H. - Chapters: 5 - Words: 16,973 - Reviews: 73 - Favs: 68 - Follows: 56 - Updated: 03-28-10 - Published: 05-09-09 - id: 5050600
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: Anything you recognize belongs to the brilliant Richelle Mead.
As a guardian, I was expected to follow my Moroi charge where ever they went, acting as an unseen shadow. Even if that meant to a fancy dinner party that I probably wouldn't be happy to be going to otherwise. I never thought I would get conned into going to one, especially by a Moroi who I wasn't technically assigned to. Yet at least.
Tasha had decided I'd be the perfect person to bring along to Pricilla Voda's exclusive invitation-only dinner. The reason probably had something to do with our complicated relationship, but I chose not to think about that as I knocked on her door.
It swung open to reveal a vision in a floor length evening gown. The dress was the color of sapphires, and brought out a mesmerizing shade of color in her eyes. Her jet black hair was styled in loose curls that fell in waves around her heart shaped face, cascading down past her creamy white shoulders.
She gave me a soft smile as she watched me take her in, and finally broke my silence by asking, "So? What do you think?"
What a loaded question. She looked beautiful, of course. But for some reason an image of Rose in her short black dress from the dance a few weeks ago popped into my mind at that moment, halting whatever it was I'd been about to say.
I quickly tried to push the distracting image out of my mind as I took her hand and brought it to my lips, softly kissing her knuckles. I replied simply, "You look wonderful."
I gently tugged her from the doorway, turning my back to close and lock her door as I pictured in my mind doing the same thing, mentally closing and locking away the images of Rose that kept popping into my mind and distracting me from the here and now.
I turned around and focused my attention back on Tasha, who still held my hand in hers, and we began walking down the hall to the elevators that would bring us to the banquet hall.
We made small talk on the way, reminiscing about the people we both knew and the places we had both once been. As we approached the banquet hall, I could see a few Royals making their way in the same direction, dressed in their finest, and we followed them on under the archway that led inside.
The room was extravagantly decorated, beeswax candles hanging on the walls around us casting a soft glow on the Moroi around the room. Trays of crystal champagne flutes and hors d'oeuvres were being offered by servers, and sets of fine china bedecked each table. In one corner of the room, a Moroi woman was playing enchanting music from her cello. Overall, the effect was magnificent but a part of me couldn't help wishing I was back in my room, enjoying a good book.
As I had been admiring the room around me, Tasha had begun socializing with those around us. Just as I had begun paying attention to the conversation, I was immediately and hopelessly distracted once more by the entrance of Lissa, or more importantly her companion. Instead of Christian Ozera accompanying the Dragomir princess as I had assumed he would, it was instead Rose who was at her side.
Lissa was beautiful in her deep purple satin dress, but it was Rose I couldn't take my eyes off of. Her dress was a deep red that was a compelling contrast with her dark hair. Flowers were embroidered onto the sleek material, and although the dress was styled with a high neck and long hem, unusual for Rose's ordinary taste, the effect was just as devastating if not more so because of how the material clung to her curves and left a lot to the imagination.
I swallowed hard as I tried to get a firm grip on my wild imagination. I DID NOT want to go there right now, especially since I was supposedly here as Tasha's date. Remembering this, I turned my eyes back to her and was unsettled to find her gaze already locked on me. As soon as I met her eyes, she blushed and turned back to the Moroi she had been conversing with. If I hadn't known any better I'd say she had been watching me in the same way I had just been watching Rose. I hope she hadn't noticed the direction of my gaze…
When it was time, I managed to acquire seats at a table that non-coincidently gave me the perfect vantage point of Rose and Lissa's seats, located in a shadowed corner of the room where I could see but not be seen by the object of my gaze. It was hard, but for the next half hour I tried to concentrate on the food presented before me, which was delicious but held my attention for less then ten minutes because of how small of a portion it was. The light chatter from those seated at our table, though hardly engaging was enough to hold my attention only when it was directed at me. Most of the time my gaze continued to wander until it found her, my eyes somehow able to quickly discern her from the crowd without having to try very hard.
Periodically throughout the meal, brief glances in my direction from Tasha would bring me back to the table we shared and when our arms or legs would brush each other for the briefest of moments it gave me a clue as to where her thoughts were straying.
My guess was confirmed after the conclusion of the meal. As I began to rise and follow the other dinner guests to the middle of the banquet hall to socialize and to try to secretly catch another glimpse of Rose in her sexy red dress, she took my hand to stop me and I paused, a silent question showing on my face.
She answered it by saying, "Have you thought at all about my offer Dimka?"
I slowly sank back into my chair, trying to hide my emotions. By her actions towards me tonight, I knew she wasn't just asking me about her offer to become her personal guardian.
Truth be told, I had thought about her offer, a lot actually. It was a great opportunity, one that would have a lot of benefits. I would be a guardian for one of the Royal families still, and I knew it would be a good situation for both of us.
She was my friend, and we got along really well together because of our history together. We had become closer, our friendship evolving into something more then I had originally thought possible after she had come to the academy.
It all really started after the trip to the mall; the one that ironically Rose suggested I accompany Tasha on. Our first kiss was after we had arrived back at the Academy. Even though there wasn't a need, I had walked her back to the old cabin in the woods she was staying in. We had had a good time together, and we were still laughing and joking as we walked, though we were exhausted from being out all night.
We had stopped in front of the door to say our goodbyes, and she turned to face me with a big smile on her face, her eyes sparkling with laughter. That was the moment things changed between us. It could have been because we had known each other for so long that it seemed like the natural next step in our relationship, or the fact that while I had been with her she had managed to keep my thoughts away from Rose. It could have been something entirely different, but whatever the reasoning the next moment she was looking searchingly into my eyes. Whatever she was looking for she must have found because she leaned closer until we were barely an inch from each other.
"Dimka," she breathed "I-"
Before I could really think about what I was doing, I took away the last space between us and kissed her slowly on the mouth. I lingered there, tasting, testing, seeing if this was what we both wanted. I began to pull away slightly but she stopped me by tangling her fingers in my hair so I pulled her closer to me and deepened the kiss.
When we finally came up for air, she gave me a shy smile and said, "I've wanted that to happen for awhile now. I used to have a crush on you when we were teenagers," she laughed at this and took my hands to twine our fingers together. "Where do we go from here Dimka?"
"I don't know," I replied, looking down at our joined hands. She squeezed my hands, and when I looked back up I could see the hope in her eyes. "I guess we'll just have to go day by day and see where it takes us."
She smiled, and I leaned back towards her for another kiss. When we finally broke apart, I gave her one last peck on the cheek and watched her walk in the door. When it closed I slowly turned and began making my way back to the main campus…
From there on, we were together as much as possible. Tasha's feelings were pure and true, the change in her personality around me was a testament to that. Mine were somewhat tainted because, though I wouldn't admit it to myself, Tasha was a way for me to cover up my feelings for Rose and I took advantage of that as much as possible. I did enjoy being with her for herself though, and as time went on and we spent more and more time together my feelings for her eventually did grow into more than I had originally thought possible.
The idea of us having children together had been hers as well. She knew how much I adored them, and she was at an age where she was ready to settle down and start a family. She hadn't found anyone before me that she had pictured herself settling down with, and who better to raise a family with than a friend you cared about? She believed that if you couldn't find the kind of love that binds two souls together, a marriage with one of your best friends was the closest thing to it.
All of this quickly flashed through my mind as she awaited my answer. Although it seemed a simple question with a simple answer, I couldn't bring myself to give her a real response just yet. My mind knew what I should say but my heart was more conflicted for reasons I refused to voice, even inside my own mind.
After a brief silence, I finally replied. "I have, though I still don't have an answer for you." I tried to be as honest as I could with her, because no matter what I felt she was still a good friend and I didn't want to hurt her and be the cause of her pain.
I saw the briefest flash of something in her eyes that caused her smile to falter almost imperceptibly but then her face cleared and her smile softened.
"It's alright Dimka, I don't mean to rush you. I know you'd want to make sure Lissa had a suitable replacement guardian, and of course you'd want to wait until Rose graduated so you could finish her training."
I felt bad that the reasons she listed on my behalf were only a small part of my hesitation, but I took the reprieve they gave me anyway.
"Thank you, Tasha," I said. "I appreciate your understanding."
She gave me another warm small when I gave her hand a small squeeze.
"Well," she said clearing her throat. "I think it's time for the real socializing to begin!"
I stood up and politely pulled her chair back from the table, keeping her hand in mine as I helped her stand. I followed her as she made her way over to a group of Moroi, where she proceeded to join in on their conversation about the latest Strigoi attack.
I excused myself after a couple of minutes, claiming my need for something to quench my thirst. I made my way to a refreshment table and randomly made a selection, my eyes already automatically searching the crowd for Rose.
I found her a little ways away standing close to Lissa, who seemed to be moderating a discussion between a few angry looking Moroi. When my view of her became blocked, I moved into a niche next to a wall covered in shadows that allowed me look on without being seen unless someone knew where to look. I settled in, leaning up against the wall and allowed my thoughts to wander. I still managed to keep a part of my mind clear in order to keep watch on the rest of my surroundings in case something were to happen. It was unlikely, but old Guardian habits die hard.
"Our Rose looks beautiful tonight, doesn't she?"
Startled out of my reverie, but not letting it show I straightened and turned to see Adrian Ivashkov had come to stand beside me, apparently knowing exactly who I was watching. Taking a sip of the drink he carried in his hand, he turned to face the same direction I was and the heat in his eyes told me he was having his own thoughts and fantasies involving Rose.
Not liking that idea one bit yet trying to hide my reaction from him, I answered with a cold voice, "There is no 'our'. Rose is my student and I am her mentor. You are just a boy who is too arrogant and cocky to realize when a woman is not interested."
"Ooohh, touchy touchy!" he said in a mocking voice. "You know, I'd be more careful if I were you. I wouldn't let on to others about your feelings for her. I'm surprised no one else ever notices the way you stare at her when you think no one is watching, and how the two of you act around each other is just indecent."
Ignoring this I replied, "You WILL stay away from Rose in the future, Ivashkov. That's not a request, that's an order. You may have other women wrapped around your finger, but Rose will not be one of them. Rose is off limits to you. I don't want to see you with her again as I did earlier, in your suite. In fact, I don't want to see you with her at all. EVER."
"Well then I guess we have a problem Belikov, since she and I are friends and I intend to turn our relationship into something more. That shouldn't be a problem for me, since you seem to be pushing yourself out of the picture if Mason Ashford is any indicator."
I knew he was trying to provoke me so all I said was "She's smarter than that. She won't fall for you."
He smirked and said, "Maybe not at first, but eventually. She may not realize it, but she does like me. Once she gets tired of Ashford, I'll be there to win her over and you won't be able to do a damn thing about it. From what I hear, you'll be too busy cozying up to Tasha Ozera, along with your other Guardian duties. You won't be there to stop it from happening."
Barely able to restrain myself, I gritted my teeth and snarled, "Stay away from her Ivashkov."
"Sorry Belikov, you ruined your chance. I'm just glad I'm here to pick up your slack."
Raising his glass in a mock salute, he finished off the last of his cocktail and placed it on the tray of a passing server. With that, he walked over to where Rose was standing by herself, Lissa lost in the crowd. Knowing I was watching, he turned his head and flashed a smug grin my way right before he reached her.
***Reviews/commentary or anything else you have to say would be greatly appreciated!!! Thanks for reading! Part 2 coming soon =)