Ah, finally peace, this was the one place I could come without worry of being interrupted by flight leaders or Nacola. My haven a little oasis in the middle of the desert about twelve miles from the forest than covered most of our lands; it was a pretty little place, lots of shade and a beautiful waterfall that fell into a clear blue lake, you could see all the way down to the bottom, not to wide but the deepest area was about twenty feet deep

I came here today to clear my head tomorrow I would have to decide where to lead our small ambush unit along with eight regiments. She had become so deep in thought she had never noticed the two Serpeinte soldiers slithering up behind her till a break of a twig made her turn head to only be met with a fist. I had enough time to draw my dagger and slit a throat before receiving another blow to the head. I flew back from the force

She hit the bottom of the lake quickly; it was shallow here, no more than ten or thirteen feet deep. Hardly deeper than swimming hole at the keep, but most certainly deep enough to kill when one was sinking in and out of conscience.

The serpent gathered his fellow shoulder over his shoulder before leaving never noticing a pair of ruby eyes watching him.

She stared at the sky above her wishing she could fly one last time but that wasn't meant to be. The water was numbing, ripping, clawing; her lungs were on fire screaming for air. She knew she had only seconds left when her vision started to fade. Child-hood memories flashed before her eyes mixed with ones of battle and blood. They became fuzzy as her mind began to shut down.

She suddenly felt someone grabbing her lifting her out of the water. She didn't have enough strength to open her eyes. All she heard was a frantic whisper, "Please be all right…please."

He pulled her from the water and they crashed together to the small, white sand beach. Without knowing it, she was holding onto this stranger for dear life, fingers clutched tightly to the soaking fabric of his shirt. He fell on his back, already starting to shiver, with a grunted "umph" – she landed atop him, draped across his chest and coughing so hard now that she was practically retching.

She was back on dry ground in the beautiful life giving air – but still water filled her lungs.

"Danica…" He was prying her hands from his shirt. She curled into a little ball on her side, coughing water up.

It was then that she recognized first the voice, the voice that had comforted her when her alistar had died that night before, she had opened her eyes to see a snake on her bed –she opened her eyes - widening with shock, as she met those two unmistakenable ruby eyes of a cobra .

Was she imagining things? She had not just been pulled from a watery grave by a cobra? At the least, the Arami.

"Z - z-ane?" she managed, between coughs and through teeth now chattering violently. She pushed herself up onto her knees attempting to run before falling to the ground. "Wh-hy?"

The last time she'd seen him had been a week ago they had both lead their troops into battle. They had even come close to fighting each other. He was the enemy there was no mistaking that. The soldier had just wanted to end the royals of the Avians, was I missing something then, why did he just save me. What did he want from me? I looked for a weapon I could use if needed but there was nothing but my dagger lying idly about twenty-four feet away.

He followed her gaze with his; she noticed he had realized exactly what she was doing. His eyes narrowed to slits, "you don't think I went through all that just to kill you

She opened her mouth to give him a piece of her mind, but all that came from that was another round of coughing that shook her body.

She heard him mumbling under his breath, his voice seemed far away now. She felt arms wrap around her waist, just below her ribs squeezing, almost painfully hard; forcing the water she had swallowed up and out.

I felt myself be lifted into the air, I was so exhausted and cold I didn't even bother to fight.

I carried Danica to a small cave not far from her little lake, no one knew that this was my little place to sort out my thoughts sometimes I would just watch her when I would accidentally stumble upon her in thought. The cave was well stocked in blankets and wood for a fire – in case I needed a one night vacation during the winter season.

He laid her down on the soft sand before moving her into the back of the cave where he had fixed a little warm bed out of the fur blankets. Watching her breathing, become rapid panting, immediately he began making a fire, only stopping once it was bright and burning.

I couldn't feel my hands and feet anymore; my body was completely numb. My eyes felt like lead but I had to keep them open.

Why… why d-did-"

He looked up; those eyes of his that resembled two pools of crimson blood; I swore looked right threw me to my soul I protected so carefully.

They stared at each other a long time letting the silence take over. Her lips, were turning blue. He knew something had to be done. The blue was plain creepy against her golden skin. He bundled her up in the furs. Despite all of the blankets and the fire that he was making bigger she was getting colder.

I whispered in her ear, "sorry, about this." Quickly I began to strip her down.

I couldn't do anything but close my eyes and just lay there as he peeled my dress off thinking, please not my slip…please not my slip…please no…please, but my plea was unanswered as he took my slip off leaving me completely bare to his gaze. I heard a gasp, opening my eyes to see his gaze sweep over my naked body before locking his eyes on mine, whispering, "You are beautiful."

Me…Me…Zane Cobriana was uneasy about undressing a woman. I had slept with many a woman and had taken a few virginities in my life, was uncomfortable about taking the clothes off this beautiful creature who despite being an avian was the dream girl of many serpents, especially soldiers who saw her on the battlefield. (long dress with slits up to her thighs in on either side of leg. Armor protecting her chest, stomach, and lower back, upper back was bear for she always wore her wings in battle. The sleeves of the dress are off the shoulder. Always a white dress with gold armor.) I gasped, I let my gaze fall on her naked form; she was so beautiful, so perfect, so pure.

I looked up to see her eyes open watching me. Slowly I took off my wet clothes, I was going to have to warm her, the old fashion way- skin to skin- her eyes widened in shock, using what little strength she had to move away slightly.

Slipping under the blankets beside her I gathered her in my arms – one arm by her shoulder blades, the other pressed to her lower back - pressing her firmly against me before covering us in the furs. Danica recoiled from the closeness but I held her firmly knowing that despite the awkwardness it would help.

Zane was so strong I couldn't fight him; instead I melted into his body – molding my body to his - soaking up heat from every inch of skin that touched my own. I would never admit it but it felt so good so comforting to be in his arms. The arms of a Cobra. I had been drowning and freezing and he had saved my life when he could have left me there to die.

Finding her voice she finally asked him that one question. "Why?"

He looked at her. "Do you remember the day you first saw me" - she nodded, how could she forget that day, the day her alistair died, then to be scared by waking up to see a cobra at the foot of your bed - "well…I…I fell in love with you that day."

I crossed by arm over my chest holding the blanket into place, as I raised myself to a sitting position supporting myself on my other arm. I had never told anyone not even my teddy bear (hay…everyone needs something to hold and talk to…I still talk to my teddy and I'm 14) but I fell in love with him that day to, there was something about him that, just attracted me to him.

"I know…I fell in love with you that day to." He smiled, reaching up his fingers tangling in my now dry waves – pulling me down to him – moving me so I rested underneath him, arms on either side of me.

I let him throw the blanket away leaving my naked body open to his gaze. His rough hands slid up my leg to my thigh massaging gently the skin under his hands. His tongue brushed my lower lip begging for entrance – how could I refuse - I moaned as his lips found my neck. A breathy moan escaped my lips as he moved to the hollow of my throat. He was being so gentle. I had always imagined a man such as Zane to take what he wanted. "What are you doing to me?" I whimpered helplessly.

He dipped his tongue into the hollow of her throat then made a trail to her chin then leaned his forehead against hers breathing heavily himself. "Showing you how a woman should be touched."

She was so soft, her skin felt like silk under my calloused hands. Gently I pushed her legs apart, settling in between them.

She was taken aback by his passion. Before she realized what she was doing she wrapped her arms around his shoulders and returned his kiss with as much passion as he gave. Never had she felt so much passion from a man.

A moan of regret escaped her as he broke the kiss and left a trail of kisses down her neck to her breasts, kissing the soft flesh between her breasts. "Zane." she moaned.

I watched him take a breast into his mouth and suck on it as an infant would hungry for its mothers milk – moans, and whimpers - came from me as his tongue darted out like a snakes making by breast tight and nipple erect. The exquisite torture continued when he switched to my other breast, not wanting to neglect it.

She was so very warm, and alive, and tingly from her head to her toes, and that was all that really mattered to her in that moment; any little thoughts of right or wrong were swept away by the tide of warmth.

It felt right, Alsdair help her. It felt… almost… meant to be, somehow.

Her fingers were tangling in his soft, onyx hair. She pushed her tongue into the warmth of his mouth, craving it. And then she became aware that he was… growing… pressed hard against her stomach.

She felt her breath catch as he shifted, never breaking eye contact, aligning their bodies, with practiced skill and she realized, really understood, what it was they were about to do.

Though avian, she was still a virgin. Zane murmured in her ear. "You can scream." She wasn't quite sure why he said that until he plunged into her with one driving thrust, claiming her. Splitting pain coiled up in her stomach as a ragged cry was ripped from her as her whole body arched like a bow, pushing back against him, unconsciously deepening the penetration and sealing, locking them together. He went still, allowing her to adjust to him before continuing.

"Shhhh… it's all right… shhhh."

He gently stroked her face, wiping away the tears that had fallen. She nodded her head and shifted letting him know she was ready. She could feel him pulsing deep inside her own body. He withdrew from her almost completely, causing a whimper to escape her from the loss of him then, after holding himself perfectly still for a heartbeat or two, thrust home once more – wrenching a sobbing little groan from her as she arched instinctively to meet him yet again.

They moved together, in a rocking rhythm that was beyond anything she'd ever imagined, and yet came as naturally to her now as breathing; meeting him thrust for thrust. Danica wrapped her long legs high up around his waist, causing him to groan as he tore his lips from hers and buried his face in the soft place where her shoulder met her neck. Her orgasm crashed over her like a wave of pleasure and pain as he spent himself with a series of quick, hard thrusts deep, deep inside of her, leaving her gasping and wanting more. With out warning Zane sunk his fangs into her neck as, she was too surprised to cry out. Then with one finale thrust he slammed into her fiery depths releasing his essence into her. She felt warm, so warm, from the tip of her nose to the tips of her toes – but nowhere more so than where the liquid fire of his seed was spreading, deep in her core.

He collapsed next to her. Holding each other close they fell deep into sleep but not before whispering to each other – "I love you".


I woke up to see Zane watching me. I went to get up but laid back down as pain shot through me. Memories of last night flashed before my eyes. I brought my hand to my neck; I could feel where Zane bit me. "Your mine now." He said possessively.

Why… How…?

He smiled explaining… "Any serpent that comes near you will be able to smell my scent knowing you're already claimed. Everyone except for avians but soon it will heal and they won't see a thing."

"Does it protect me?" I was a little confused.

"It will in battle, the soldiers will leave you alone, thinking I marked you to tell them that I want to be the one to kill you, while in reality I am the one protecting you from death."

It took me a while to process all he told me but I finally did. "Thank You." I whispered.

He smiled leaning down – gently pecked her on the lips – "I love you Danica Shardae."

"And I love you Zane Cobriana"