Title: What Stands Watch In the Night

Author: lostnite

Pairing: none really

Rating: K

Disclaimer: Not mine

Summary: What Henry did after Vicki left with Mike in Blood Ties: Blood Price

Henry watched as Mike and Vicki walked away from her building, arms around each other. If Vicki had turned and seen the look on his face, the jealousy, she would've been surprised. Henry made a big deal out of not being prey to "the human condition" but he admitted, at least to himself, that he envied Michael Celluci. Watching as he walked down the street with is arm around Vicki, the words, "You're a part of me now, Vicki" echoed in his head. As a Prince of the Realm, Duke of Richmond, Earl of Huntingdon, he had been raised to protect his people. The belief was that one day he would be king, and it was to be his duty to protect them.

He already felt protective towards Victoria. His Victoria. He admitted (only to himself) that that was how he thought of her now. He would watch over her, even if she wasn't aware of it. He followed at a discreet distance, distracted by the scent of her blood, and by the smell of Celluci. He knew the tall man wanted her too. That may or may not be acceptable. He would have to wait and see. After he knew Vicki was safely on her way home, he headed to one of his favorite clubs, 24. It was loud, hot and full of willing participants more than happy to give him what he needed. He entered the club already on the hunt, heading towards the back where the women (and the men) waited. He wrapped the beast tightly inside himself and found her almost immediately. A quasi-blonde woman, almost his height. He walked up to her, using his voice and his eyes to bring her into him. He would never admit that she bore a passing resemblance to Vicki. He was Henry, Duke of Richmond. He must admit nothing. She followed him to the fence, listened to him tell her she was beautiful, smart. Whatever she needed to hear. When he bent over the soft skin on her wrist, he smiled as his lips brushed lightly over the vein that was singing to him. The darkness hid his true self, and that bothered him. He longed for someone who knew who he was. What he was. He didn't just want to feed. He wanted someone to share his life. Someone who could see his true self and not be filled with fear. He wanted someone to share every part of his life.

And understand.

Accept him for what he was, what he had been for almost 500 years. He would never find it here he knew. And he knew that banishing Astaroth had protected his secret from the people of Toronto. There would be no villagers with torches come to burn him this time. Because of her. He fed from the girl. He couldn't remember her name, just that her blood quieted the beast for a while. He left, feeling the hunger gone, but the other, unnamed thing still there. Henry turned and walked aimlessly and not until he scented her did he realize where he was. Vicki's. He made his way to her where he knew she lived and rose to her window. It was unlocked and he slipped in quietly. He knew she was alone and for a moment wondered why she hadn't brought Celluci home with her. Could she be waiting for him? No. She was asleep. Her breathing was steady, the rise and fall of her chest and the slow beat of her heart told him this.

He didn't wake her. He quietly sat down in the red velvet chair in the corner, piled high with her clothes. He pulled her smell around him and propped his chin in his hand. He watched her. Told himself he was simply making sure there were no ill aftereffects from her encounter with Norman and the demon. She would never know he was there unless he willed it so. Henry stayed until there was less than 15 minutes left of the night. He found it difficult to pull himself away and laughed soundlessly. Vicki would call him a stalker. And he supposed that's what he was. It's what he would continue to be until he knew for certain she would always be safe. It didn't matter how long it took. She would not know he was there unless he wished it. He would wait until she came to him.

He had all the time in the world.

The end