Let me think about it. And she strode out of the room.

I can live with that. Its not a no.

She thought about it for 3 weeks. She didnt speak of it to me again. We resumed our regular routine. Some nights we spent at my house, some at hers. Some nights we went to Fangtasia, some nights I waited for her to finish her shift at the shifters bar. I knew not to pressure her. Her past had shown me that, when pushed, she had the impulse for flight. And I can be patient, when I have to be.

I knew she was still thinking, though, because on the nights she spent at Fangtasia, she didnt spend all her time with me. She told me to go sit on what she called my throne, and I saw her sitting at my table talking to Pam. I knew she trusted my child, and was pleased that she sought out her advice as well. I also knew that my child was one of the happiest vampires ever, the most pleased with her existence, and that she would not only tell my lover the truth, but would not steer her wrong. My child is one of my greatest triumphs, on so many levels. Pam could also give her a perspective I could not, on what it was like to be a female vampire in a mostly male-dominated world. But my child is nothing if not a great success story. I had great confidence in her counsel.

One night, we returned to my home and were in the tub. I was enjoying the feel of her silky skin against my chest, her hair tickling my throat. I wrapped my arms around her waist and pulled her to me more tightly. I wrapped my long legs around her and mock squeezed. She laughed, such a beautiful sound. I loved the sound so much, so I started tickling her. She started to laugh and squeal, squirm against me. My legs held her captive, one arm held her trapped against my chest while I teased her mercilessly with the other. Finally she squeaked out that she couldnt breathe. I relaxed my hold a little and finally stopped tormenting her. She collapsed against me, trying to catch her breath. I just enjoyed feeling her pounding heart, her racing pulse, and resisted the impulse to nip her neck. She was quiet for a moment, then simply said, okay. I was startled. As in, okay okay? The big question okay? Yes, she said. I want this forever. You, me, baths, love, being playful, even the bad times, whatever comes. Even if you get tired of me and I spend eternity alone, its worth it to have this for as long as it lasts. I picked her up and spun her around, cradled her to my chest. I told her I would never tire of her, that I would cherish her for as much time as we were given. I just had one more question. She sat up and looked at me, puzzled. I just asked, when? She laughed again. As soon as I get a really good tan, she replied. I threw my head back and laughed. Take as much time as you want my love, as much time as you need. Just let me know when you are ready.

We spent the next week together as much as possible. I wanted as much of her as I could get, enjoying her warmth. Each night I could taste the sun on her skin, could see her getting a little more golden, a little more sun-kissed. Each night she moved a few more of her things into my home. After she fell asleep, I would stand in my living room, looking at what was just a short time before a place devoid of warmth and personality, and realize that in just a short time she was turning a basic house into a home. Suddenly there were knickknacks, and photos of her family. MY family, I realized with a start. Because I was gaining so much more than her, I was gaining her memories and all she cherished. Which now included me. I moved back into the bedroom and into the closet. Next to my mostly black clothes were suddenly color and light. I chuckled. She may be the first vampire to wear sundresses. I inhaled the scent of her clothes mingling with mine, our scents mingled together. On the floor next to my boots were high heels, tennis shoes, sandals, pairs of flats. What had I ever done to deserve this? I went into the bathroom. My once barren bathroom, where the counter previously held just a hairbrush and bottle of cologne, now held a makeup bag and curling iron, several kinds of styling products. I opened a drawer and found it overflowing with rubber bands and all kinds of other hair accessories.

I smiled and shut the drawer. I went back to the bed, pulled her into my arms. I wasted so much time, I shouldve asked her sooner.