Title: With all my heart Author: Barbayat Email: barbayatjamballa.de Pairing: Verona/Dracula Rating: R (might become NC-17 later)
Summary: My version of how Dracula met Verona and choose to take his first bride Disclaimer: The characters of Dracula and Van Helsing do belong to Universal, Sommers and who ever paid for their rights, this is just for fun Archive: none so far Author's Notes: Was part of my Dark Matters Story, but Verona kind of demanded that I took more effort with her past and thus I excluded the Interludes from Dark Matters and made it a stand-alone story. That way it serves as a separate background-story for Dark Matters!

1. Approach

Count Vladislaus Dragulia had been famous for his magnificent festivities back in the first quarter of 16th century. However, the one season most worth remembering had taken place in the summer of 1512, fifty years after he had made his deal with the devil.

Dracula gave these balls not so much for the pleasure of the event itself, but for the opportunity to find someone new to toy with. By that time it had been his favourite game to get hold of a young innocent girl, who was completely absorbed by the Christian ideals of purity. Sooner or later they all fell for him and then, it was not long before he yearned for a new toy.

He had always thought women to be dull and weak, useful only in bed or for those other things he had no need for as a vampire. Then this young girl had arrived with her rich, much older husband during the autumn season. There had been something about the way she walked, an air that was demanding, powerful. He decided to observe the beautiful black-haired girl for some time. Nearly the whole ball she had sat with her husband at their table, turning down every single man who had asked her for a dance.

Finally he took his turn and approached her. Dracula sensed that she was attracted, but still meant to say 'no'. However, as he held out his hand to her, no word or gesture of refusal came from her. The girl's eyes sparkled with fury as she realised that he was the reason for it. He forced her hand into his and pulled her closer. Sweeping her off to the dance floor, he let go off her mind. The fury her face showed now produced a sardonic smile on his.

"What in the name of all Saints...," she began. Keeping her voice low, it still carried a lot of anger.

"…did I do to you?" Vladislaus continued.

Verona shook her head, trying to bolster herself. She was proud for a girl her age and had taken her vow very seriously. Even after months she still held it dear, although she was neither happy nor in love with her husband. Her belief in God was strong; but she was not as narrow-minded as others were.

"I suggest you lead me back to my husband," she said defensively.

Vladislaus enjoyed that she became nervous and had every intention to make her even more so. Her body was already reacting to his touches, the hand on her back wandered deeper to her waistline. He pulled her inappropriately close. Her hips were now pressed against his and he felt that she was blushing.

"That's not what you want," he replied suggestively.

"You got the wrong wife," Verona spat back.

"You got the wrong husband."

The young woman smiled triumphantly thinking she had finally come up with an argument that would make her host realise that she was not interested.

"That's what you like to think," she told Dracula as he swept her away even farther. He sniggered and now slightly worried, she added: "and I couldn't be happier."

"Now that's what you like to think!" he teased her.

"I suppose you think that you can make me even happier", she said, scornfully. "Thanks, but I doubt that very much." Verona had wanted to say so much more, but pressed her lips together. It was too private and inadequate. Things that had no place in the Count's world. Invading her thoughts, he saw the whole truth behind her anger.

How that undeserving husband touched her at night, only attending to his own needs. He smiled sensing her aggravation whenever he left her unsatisfied and returned to his own chamber leaving her alone in the dark. That she had been told so often by her mother that there was nothing more in store and that the only pleasure she would ever get out of a man would be children of her own. Part of her believed it, while another part knew that there was more and that she would not find it with her husband.

'Quite an amusing conflict for someone who wants to be faithful', Dracula thought, still not letting her go. Back then, he had thought that she might make an interesting plaything for the next weeks, but the reminder of the evening had proved him wrong.

"'Making you happy' is such an inadequate term for what I have in mind", he whispered in her ear.

Their bodies so close, Vladislaus felt her warmth, her pounding heart sending her blood through the tiniest capillary. There was much more to be done before she would submit to her lust. So he decided to relocate the conversation to a place were he would be undisturbed. In the blink of an eye he had warped the two of them up to his study.

Verona's heart beat feverishly as she found herself alone with the Count. The few witnesses at the ball could dismiss the disappearing couple as the result of too much wine and dancing. Not the girl though, as she had got her first insight on her host. Dracula allowed her to back off, which she did with fast paces until the wall stopped her.

"You are in league with the devil", she said with a panic-ridden voice.

Dracula knew the stories and it was all the more amusing that the high-society of Budapest never missed a ball. In fact it was considered an honour to be invited. "You don't know the half of it", he told her, smugly.

One step towards her and she fled towards the door. Naturally she bumped into him and he let her escape once more. Verona used the other door without realising that he could have stopped her easily. Now she found herself within his bedchamber. The Count enjoyed how her body came to a sudden halt as she noticed the huge four-poster. Breathing heavily she turned as he walked in and closed the door.

A gasp of terror escaped her as he locked it. It was as if she meant to say something, but decided against it. He once more ventured into her most private thoughts. Indeed, she was not afraid of rape, she was more concerned with what he was. The girl was clever enough to know that he had the influence to get away with whatever he planned to do to her. There was also a great deal of confusion about whom she should be pleading to - God or him.

Dracula was fascinated for it seldom happened that someone was not instantly praying or crying out for help. He had been in a playful mood, but that had changed. Appearing behind her back, he embraced her, his hands touching her modestly covered breasts. Instinctively she tried to pull away, but of course it was nothing more than a feeble attempt. He kissed her neck, ignoring the fact that she fought him.

Passionately he nibbled at her ear and caressed her soft flesh in the most tender way imaginable. His hands were working on her much more ferociously now. The layers of her dress were so thick that he was forced to do so. Her corsage pained her and unwillingly, a long moan escaped her. Small hands burning with warmth tried to push his cold hands away. After her third moan, which sounded much more lustful, he stopped the violent massage of her breasts.

While she sighed with relief, his lips sucked on a part of her skin so intensely that her hands came up as if they were actually able to stop him. With a swift move he grabbed her wrists, raised them over her head and turned her around. Her mind was tossed into pure chaos now. While she stared at him, his fingers grabbed the backside of her dress. He found his way inside the binding and tore it off. The upper part of her dress along with the corsage fell down and left her bosom covered with nothing more than a thin shirt.

Verona was now clutching her arms, but showed no further signs of resistance as he kissed her face and touched her soft curves. She tried not to give in, put nonetheless he continued to work on her. He had had his way with women for more than half a century, so naturally he knew all those gentle touches that drove them to the edge of sanity, but he also was able to set fire to their lust with firm demanding strokes.

Naturally he tried to determine what variant worked best on his new toy, only to discover that she was responding equally strongly to both of them. He straddled her on the bed, pulling off her shirt. Her burning heat and the drum of her heart beat sent even sweeter sensations through his cold veins than feeling her soft skin with his hands and lips. Verona was now at a point were she was no longer able to suppress her moans.

No will on earth was able to outweigh the animal inside lusting for all the forbidden pleasures. Did God really think that he would win by offering this one sided spiritual love-concept while forbidding his subjects to satisfy all their other cravings? Would He cast this girl out if he killed her now? She had become quite noisy as she announced her delight. According to his old Bishop, he already had damned her for all eternity.

Of course right now he had no intention to kill her, he enjoyed seeing her body tremble far too much. For minutes, he had firmly brushed her entire body from waist to head. Now that he was caressing her breast with his fingertips he saw that her hands grabbed the skirt and moved up and down fiercely. She was ready to be taken, wet, burning and lusting with all her senses for him to continue what his gestures had promised.

Naturally this was the point for him to stop. He rose from her and walked slowly towards the door. Verona lay there panting heavily. Faintly she had opened her eyes and looked around her. Dracula knew that she could not believe that he had left her. Long before she was able to speak, her mind screamed for him to return. She wanted to ask why he was going or how long, but also considered demanding and begging him to continue.

In the end, only a silent desperate "Please …" came over her still trembling lips. Vladislaus opened the door and, turning for a last gaze he presented her a triumphant, nasty smile. The first game was his and his next would be to torment her, by denying her the only thing that was on her mind right now. It was amazing how easy her devotion and faithfulness had been washed away; but then, she had been terribly neglected.

Dracula returned for the reminder of the ball to dance with a few other young women. After all he was the host and it would have given a really bad impression if he left so early without notice. It did not surprise him that Verona did not return. Her husband left early; but not to look for his wife. Vladislaus's servants told him he went straight to his guest rooms, in the west wing.

The girl had already left his chambers, sneaking through the dark corridors with the rest of her gown pressed against her chest, for her guest rooms, who was located next door to her husbands. He had been told she had had a very disappointed look on her face.