Sorry for the wait!
Love Aina and Lolly .

I couldn't sleep.

The digital clock on the bedside table glowed 2.30, and the house was silent, as it would be in the time before the dawn. I laid on my side, staring at the clock, my eyes feeling puffy from all the crying that I'd done. I hadn't turned to face Jesse since he had tried to kiss me and I -foolishly - rejected it.

But I couldn't. I couldn't pretend to be innocently kissing him when I was as guilty as hell.

I shifted my body slightly, so that I didn't wake Jesse from his sleep. I slowly turned my body around and faced him.

His profile was perfect in the moonlight, strong and striking. It was as perfect as the time when he and I talked in the middle of the night while he was still a ghost, haunting my bedroom while I strutted around like the badass mediator I thought I was. I didn't need anyone, I thought.

Until I met him.

Oh God. What have I done?

When Jesse was lying in the hospital bed, and I thought I had lost him, I wished that he'd make it, and that by some miracle, we could be together. I didn't even mind if he had stayed a ghost, as long as he was with me.

Now that the miracle had finally happened, I couldn't even honor it. I couldn't even be grateful, for all that he had given me and for all that I had given him. I traded our relationship, our marriage, for a fling with a guy who I knew was not someone I could trust.

But Suze never learned. Stupid. STUPID.

I stared at Jesse, his chest rising slowly with each breath he released, and I ached to touch him. I wanted so badly to touch his beautiful face, run my fingers through his hair, be warmed by his embrace. I wanted to be taken in his love.

I reached a hand out….and pulled it away.

Whatever he could give me, I didn't deserve any of it.

I sighed and closed my eyes, hoping to be lost in the sleep and hoping that in the morning, the guilt would no longer cause a sickening stain on myself.

I started pacing furiously around my apartment.

'All right,' I said to myself, my voice crackling dangerously. 'All I have to do is...go over there. Go over and bring her back - '

I stopped, and shook my head.

'No,' I groaned, pulling on my hair with shaking fingers. 'No, that's too easy . . . he still wouldn't know what she'd done - or he'd come to find her - '

I had to make it so he didn't WANT to find her!

'Tell him,' I planned, resuming my pacing heatedly. 'Then drag her back here, and . . . '

What then? She wouldn't want to stay.

I stopped again, and sucked in a sharp breath. What was I going to do with her? She'd run away any chance she got . . . just like she'd ALWAYS run away from our love. It scared her. But - that was only because she'd always had HIM to go back to, right? Without him to resort to in the end, she'd have no incentive to leave me . . .


I grinned, content with this.

But . . .

What if he still FORGAVE her? Even after he knew what she was? A stupid, unfaithful whore. What if he took her back still?

I gritted my teeth.

. . . Right.

He'd have to go.

Simple as that.

'Kill him,' I said to myself definitely. ' . . . But tell him first.'

Tell him everything we did together . . . the noises she made, the way she'd scream MY name, NOT his, when she came - how hard her thighs would squeeze around me as she let me thrust into her as forcefully as I wanted . . .

Don't miss a detail.

I wanted to see his face go pale with horror.

I wanted to see him in pain . . .

It was settled.

I grabbed my gun from my bedside drawer, and shifted to her.

- 8 -

I was in a hotel room.

I had the time to briefly wonder what I was doing there, before I felt someone's presence behind me. I turned, and saw him.


He was smirking, and my heart started pounding. Everything happened in a blur – him pushing me onto the bed, his hands grabbing at my clothes while I protested uselessly, yelling at him to stop him from doing the inevitable, but he was relentless, and he was laughing and laughing…

My eyes flew open, and I gasped.

Just a dream, Suze. Just a dream.

I took a deep breath and exhaled slowly, letting my pulse return to its normal speed. The room was as quiet and undisturbed as when I had fallen asleep, and I felt comforted by it. I was home, and I was safe.

The clock on the bedside showed the time as 3.46. I didn't hear anything except Jesse's soft breathing.

It took longer than I'd expected. She was a lot furtherer away, and it was harder to connect with her astrally. I was only thankful that I was already so connected to her . . . to her soul. It made the astral search so much easier.

And then, finally . . . I was with her again. I could breathe once more.

This insane joy was torn; brutally shattered, when I saw who was in bed with her.

Him . . .

I don't know why I expected anything else. He was the reason that I was coming here. I had to do what was necessary for us to be together. But just . . . seeing him with her, the way only I was meant to be -

I just about snapped and shot him squarely there.

- But I didn't. I had to do this according to my plan. He had to feel true pain before I killed him and fucked his widow however I pleased.

I leaned back against the pillow and closed my eyes, certain that the nightmare would not return.

That's when I hear the faint, but unmistakable sound, of a materialization.

My first thought was that it was a ghost, searching for two mediators to help him or her, although the time for that visit was hardly anything to shout about. I pretended to sleep, hoping that the ghost will go away and come back some other time.

But I didn't hear anything, which was strange.

I just glared at her sleeping form. How could she look so beautiful when she slept? Why didn't her corrupted, dirty soul emerge across her guiltless features? Was that what I loved about her? Killing the glistening purity that she seemed to radiate? Was that what was so attractive? The thought of destroying her, and making her just as depraved as me?

Dragging her down so she wasn't superior . . .

Slowly, I opened my eyes again, glanced up and saw the most horrible image that I could think of.

That's when I realized that this was a nightmare to which there is no waking from.

Suddenly, her eyes snapped open. I saw the emerald gems flash with fear, and my heart skipped a beat. She sat up in her bed, wide-eyed. Absolutely terrified.

That he'd find out.

'You look like you've seen a ghost, Suze,' I remarked dryly; softly.

She stammered something, and her hand twitched as if to rouse her husband awake but I suddenly lifted my hand, aiming my gun at him.

'No,' I advised.


Never in my life had I wished that I was hallucinating, but this was a moment that I wished I was hallucinating, and even more.

Paul was standing in my bedroom. With a freaking GUN.

The sanctuary that I felt in my house was all but shattered now.

'Look, can we just –' I stammered, eyeing the gun that was aimed at my still sleeping husband. 'Can we talk about this, Paul? I mean –'

He looked pissed off.

No, he looked MURDEROUS.

My laugh dead as quiet as it was humourless. 'You want to talk?'

I advanced on her. She clutched her covers over her chest which was scantily clad with silk, but I yanked them down furiously. 'Nothing I haven't seen before,' I spat at her.

She looked alarmed by the force of my words.

To say I was scared was a terrible understatement. I was almost shaking, and my heart was racing like mad.

I flinched as he pulled the covers, his words sharp and bitter. Up close, he looked even worse than I thought, His eyes were bloodshot, and his appearance was scruffy - it was the opposite of the usual cool demeanour that Paul Slater had.

I didn't know how to react to his words.

God, I didn't know WHAT to do.

While she was distracted with her gut-wrenching fear, I took a moment to look my fill. My eyes raped her, scraping down her skin, her nightdress that ended shortly to reveal creamy thighs that were tightly pressed together. I swallowed, and my eyes glazed over in lust.

God . . . why was she so damned addictive?

'Paul,' she whispered in a voice that was throttled with fright. My gaze snapped back up to her face, and my nostrils flared. She wasn't looking at me, but the gun in my hand, the one that was so keen to kill the man sleeping obliviously beside her.

What was I going to do? Damn it, WHY didn't I PLAN this properly?

I was supposed to kill him. Wake him up, reveal everything, and kill him.

. . . But all I wanted now, was her. To be driving into her with unhindered force.

Just like before.

I took a hesitant step forward, and she flinched again, her eyes still on the gun. I stopped, momentarily ashamed of myself for scaring her - but then remembering that she was a lying bitch and she deserved it all, and worse.

And with that, I shoved her back against her bed, and straddled her, all the while aiming constantly at de Silva's unsuspecting head.

'Make a sound,' I hissed, 'And I shoot him.'

My eyes were blurry from hot tears. But if I had wanted some sort of compassion from him, I wasn't going to get any. That part was obvious.

What did you expect me to do? I kept quiet, of course. I wasn't going to take a chance, with that lethal gun pointed at Jesse's still sleeping form. But Paul's weight on me, the way his other hand was starting to roam against my skin...

It was sickening.

When he saw that I wasn't fighting, he leaned down and placed his face close to mine. His breath stank with alcohol, and I had to fight the urge to land a punch, or poke an eye. I swallowed a few times, out of my mind with fear.

"Paul..." I tried to speak, sounding strangled. "Can you please put the gun away?"

I grinned. 'No...I'm pretty sure I like the effect it has on you, actually.' This wasn't completely truthful - it was much more exhilirating when she was thrashing and screaming at me, but it gave me an ultimate power over her that I'd never had before. That was the addiction.

She pressed her eyelids closed hard, and tears slid down her cheeks before deviating and disappearing down the sides of her face. A breath rasped from my throat as I struggled to tame myself. No longer did her pathetic tears inspire guilt and self-hatred; no, now I was wiser. I knew it was her only defense - crying was the only way she knew to get me to stop. Screaming hadn't worked after all.

Now, those tears made every nerve ending ache and boil and roar for her. Another breath slid forcefully past my lips. I bent down a little, dragging my tongue against the skin below her eyes... her tears tasted like salty warm. She recoiled in disgust. I sat up again, still tasting her misery in my mouth.

Okay, just let him do what he long as his finger stayed away from the trigger...

But this idea was making me sick. The way he had licked me, like I was some object for his pleasure...I felt sick, SICK to the pits of my stomach. And worse, I still didn't know why he was here. To kill Jesse? To kill me? To kill us both?

Or to have yet another meaningless sex with me? In front of Jesse?

The thought was so horrifying that I had to shut my eyes, hoping that it wasn't true. But a hiss in my ear made me open my eyes again, "Look at me, Suze! Don't you always look at me when we fuck?"

Oh, God. Help me.

I stared at him, tears pooling in my eyes, and he smirked. "Good times, eh?"

I almost laughed at that, despite the insane situation I was in. Good times. That was what I wanted when I was in New York, and look where it got me. Being threatened by a crazy stalker-shifter who wants to put a bullet in my husband's skull. Another bedroom for him to die in.

Slapping away the morbid thoughts, I tried again. Anything to keep his focus away from Jesse.

"Why are you here, Paul?" I whispered, hoping to sound like I was concerned. I've always watched on TV, how the victims keep kidnappers and potential murderers talking, so that they'll forget about their intention in the first place. How I could still remember this now, was beyond me.

But did I qualify to be a victim?

I smiled cheerfully. 'For you, of course. Did you think that I'd just let you slip away like that?'

"Slip away?" I knew I should be careful, but I couldn't help it. "If I remember correctly, I left because you hit me. You HIT me."

The fear I felt was slowly mixed with anger, but I still kept my voice low. If I played my cards right, maybe he'll leave. Maybe I would wake up tomorrow and this will be just like a really bad nightmare.

And Jesse wouldn't have found out.

Because I would rather die being shot than having to face Jesse again if he ever found out about this.

My smile faltered - I narrowed my eyes at her. Why did she have to bring that up? That was an accident. I didn't mean to smack her like that, just - she was being so HURTFUL... saying I was nothing to her. What did a little bruise compare, to her homicidal words?

I rolled my eyes. 'Minor detail,' I said, dismissive.

Minor? I couldn't believe it. He hit me and he said it was just a minor detail. I bet he didn't give a damn whether I was hurt or not, as long as he got what he wanted.

Frustration started to build inside me, and I said again, this time with a much harder tone, 'What do you want, Paul? You know this...thing we was over. So why are you here?'

Jesse suddenly shifted in his sleep, and my heart nearly popped out of my chest. He soon settled again, but my pulse was racing. I glanced over at Paul but he didn't seem to notice. Instead, he was staring at me with a strange expression on his face.

It was, I realised, denial.

I too turned to look at him, my eyes widening. He slept on...which was only expected, I guess. The guy ignored everything about his wife; why would he sense something was wrong now?

Turning back to Suze, I lowered so my nose was nuzzling against her neck. Her attempt to jerk away from me was weak - I could easily overpower her...

He didn't respond to my question. Figures. He couldn't respond, so he chose to make me respond to him instead. His proximity to me was suffocating, and even the touch of his flesh against mine made my skin burn. Not with desire, but with disgust.

I felt like screaming, hating this helpless feeling. Paul started to kiss my neck, and the more I pulled away, the harder he tried.

I wanted to escape, but at the same time I didn't want to wake Jesse. If I could wake him up, maybe he can take the gun from Paul while Paul was distracted...yet what would he say when he saw Paul here? What would he THINK?

I was drowning in her again...her scent, her being, her everything... I craved her with all of my senses, to hear her scream, feel her shudder, watch her cry, breathe in her sweat and taste her dying purity.

Her body was starting to shake as the fear began to take its gripping toll. My eyes pierced into her skin, singeing her face with my repressed lust. It was agonising how just...looking at her could make a fire start roaring inside me, demanding action without saying please.

And finally in answer to her question, I whispered hotly, hatefully, gently against her neck, 'Why am I here? I'm here, Suze, to kill him.' I chuckled at the sudden stiffness of her body. '...But not before killing him with words first...'

Suddenly, she started crying harder. 'No!' she hissed, 'NO! Paul, please...I'll do anything - just...don't tell him, please...please go, I can't - '

'But that's the best part of this,' I replied, my free hand releasing her arm and smoothing down her stomach till it reached her thigh. It then began retracing its path, sliding back up - this time, beneath her silk. She was sobbing freely now.

'And besides, Suze, I'm not an idiot. I know I could never keep you while you still had him. So I'm just making this easier for you. Without him, you can love me without the guilt...' I kissed her frozen lips tenderly. 'Without the pain...then we can be together, Suze. Then I can have all of you...'

Whenever I wanted...the first thing I'd do was throw away his wedding band on her finger...

I'd tear away his ownership, and she'd be mine.

...But hurting Jesse was necessary. She needed to see his hate. His disgust; his pain.

He was INSANE - that was the coherent, repeating thought in my head. I was shaking from the crying and the effort to keep quiet despite the crying, but his words were wounding me more than his actions could. It wasn't enough that he was threatening to kill my husband, he wanted him to feel the pain of knowing his wife had cheated on him.

Paul was a monster. No, he was worse because monsters had no idea that what they're doing hurts others, but with him, he was perfectly aware of it. And he was enjoying it to the fullest.

'I - You can't,' I sobbed pathetically.

'I can't what?' His touches, his kisses were drowning me, and I wished so badly...that I was dead. Then it would have saved pain from a lot of people. Me. Him. Jesse.

But it didn't mean I had to give in to him.

'You can't have me,' I said, wiping the tears from my cheeks roughly.

That was when his face changed. Denial disapperead. Now it was just hostility. Pure hostility.

What have I done?

My fingers against her stomach went claw-like...

'Yes I can,

' I spat.

I could...I could have anyone I wanted...but I wanted her...and I COULD have her. She was mine, and she loved me and she craved our sparks as much as I did...

'I CAN!' I suddenly roared, jamming the gun against de Silva's throat -

'NO!' she screamed, horrified.

...That's when things got messy.

The second I let out that scream, I knew all hell would break loose.

But it still didn't prepare me for the moment when Jesse woke up with a start, the confusion on his face turning into shock when he saw the gun pointed at him.

Not for the moment when he saw who was pointing the gun, and suddenly, inevitably, everything was out in the open.

My dirty soul was naked under his gaze, and the secret I fought so strongly to keep was now about to explode.

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