Disclaimer: I do not own these characters, they and the world they live in, belong to Kim Harrison - I just need an outlet for my frustration.

The pain. All I could think of was the horrible, excruciating agony coursing through my body and soul—enveloping my mind. There was nowhere to run, anymore. Nowhere to hide. Even if there was an escape route, my vision was blurred almost completely. I could barely make out the figure before me, let alone my entire surroundings. It was useless. Hopeless. I was going to die right here and now, and it was about time I learned to accept it. We were underground, therefore I was incapable of tapping any lines to use for defence. I should have known this day would come, I should have been prepared. But no, me being stupid Rachel Morgan, I decided to figure things out when they were thrown at me. Standing ovation, anyone? No? Fine, then.

"You're mine now, witch."

I'd recognize that voice anywhere. Of course, I already knew it was him. I had seen him before he punched me in the goddamn face. Not really classic for an undead vampire, but hey…I didn't know everything about their combat methods. I just somehow couldn't help but feel that a punch right smack in the nose was kinda low. I felt a sharp pain at the nape of my neck and only shortly after did I realize someone was pulling me up by my hair. Also, I have to admit, quite low. Especially for a master vampire.

I squinted in the dimly-lit chamber to see an ominous silhouette. He smirked at me. "You have no idea how long I've been waiting for this."

I spit in his face. Damn had I been waiting to do that for a long time! "Just kill me already, will you? Hasn't your mother ever told you not to play with your food?"

"Is our little Rachel becoming impatient?" He laughed before once again returning to his evil allure. "I do not plan on biting you. That would be too much pleasure for someone I wish to suffer."

"Shove it, Piscary."

It was hard to tell with my vision only slowly increasing over the course of time, but I was pretty sure to have seen him frown. I must have hit a soft spot. Yes! Or…wait, was that a bad thing? An aggressive expression contorted his features into pure unattractiveness and he flung me to the wall. Yup, it was bad. Really bad.

I heard a distant shattering resonance when my back hit something sharp and a painful agony shot it's way through my spine to settle in my head. Ouch. Every time I flexed a muscle, the pain would return, so I opted for remaining perfectly still. Probably not the best survival method, but I wasn't exactly the best planner, either. My body had numbed to a dull ache when I felt the pool of blood surround me. The Turn take it, I was bleeding? I felt my eyelids become overly-heavy, and I knew it was wrong to let them close. I seen way to many movies where people suddenly got "sleepy" and it didn't turn out too well when they didn't end up waking up. But guess what I did? Oh yeah…I closed my eyes.

I don't know exactly how much time passed after that because it felt like mere seconds to me, but an enormous chunk of time had evidently flew by seeing as I felt serenely lighter. Not in the sense that I was floating up to heaven—because I'd most likely be thrashing frantically if that were the case—, but in the sense that I was being carried. I had no clue who it was, seeing as my eyes didn't want to open, and yet I wrapped my arms around whomever was holding me and snuggled into their torso to be greeted with a pillow. It was the moment a soft, feminine moan echoed through my ears that I realized it wasn't exactly a pillow. Awkward…

My lips parted to speak but I was shushed by a soothing voice that could belong to none other than my favourite vampire. Well…favourite female vampire. I didn't necessarily want to have a debate in my head about whom I loved more between Kisten and Ivy. "Shhh. It's alright, Rachel. It's okay." I felt my body relax into her figure as she spoke soft words to me. "I'm here, everything's going to be okay. Shhh."

"Ivy…" my voice rasped and she hushed me once more, annoyance eluding her tone entirely.

She was cradling me in her arms. I knew it. I couldn't see her, and most of my body was nothing more than a dull ache, but I could feel one of her arms supporting me where my knees bent and the other curled tightly around my back below my arms. I felt like a baby. Nevertheless, I was a happy baby.

"Fuck, Rachel. You're bleeding."

Ivy swore. Oh. My. God. Ivy swore. I'd only ever heard Ivy swear once before, and that was when she had been really pissed at Nick. Wait a minute…was it a bad thing that I was bleeding? I mean, I was being cradled home by a vampire while I was leaking out blood? Probably not a good idea. She begun walking slightly faster, though her steps were as smooth as if we were gliding across the ground. I heard a car door unlocking in the distance and managed to open my eyes in surprise. I'd recognize that sound anywhere. It was my car! Hey! Ivy had come here in my car! No freaking way, man!

While I silently awed the simple fact that Ivy had driven all the way here in my car, she had managed to get us inside the vehicle. Her actions were smooth as grace can get as she slid the passenger seat backwards to make a comfortable place to lie me down onto. Ivy left the car door open as she somehow managed to flip me onto my side so that my back was to her without making any movements that hurt my aching back. Once again, I was definitely a happy baby.

My surprise grew less and less intense at Ivy's cursing when I stopped counting around 34 times. She was mumbling and swearing to herself as, without any hesitation, she had torn the back of my black halter top to expose my naked back to the chilly September air. Why? I have no idea. Her fingers begun massaging the area around the painful area of my back as she resumed her soft cursing once more. A wash of misplaced relief washed over me as I realized she was releasing pheromones into the air around us to make my wound switch from a dull ache to mild pleasure. It should have frightened me, but I honestly didn't care at the moment.

"I'm sorry, Rachel." Her words hardly had time to register within my head before I felt a sharp pull followed by a rush of pure ecstasy rip through me and nestle itself between my thighs before slowly fading away to the pounding of my heartbeat. Wow.

I slowly realized that I was still whimpering in pleasure when she placed her hand on my half-exposed shoulder and apologized again before placing a grotesquely enormous piece of glass onto the drivers seat in view. That had been in my back? The Turn take it, how the hell did I get into these situations in the first place? My panting slowly faded to a moderately heavy breathing as I tried to regain focus on the world around me. Ivy was sponging the leaking blood out of my back with cloths she had brought…was there anything this vampire ever forgot about? Evidently not. There was one thing, however, that kept torturing my mind with the fact that we might have forgotten it.

"Piscary?" I managed to whisper in a hoarse tone after having managed to turn around to face her. I had no idea how long I'd been out for, and I needed to know if the master vampire had been incapacitated, or simply fled. The latter seemed highly unlikely, however his previous display of equity made almost anything seem plausible.

Ivy shook her head slowly at the sound of his name before ever-so-gently placing my head back into proportional position with my body. "I took care of him."

I didn't exactly wish to know what "taking care of him" implied, so I didn't ask her. My stomach begun to churn, and I suddenly felt dizzier than before. I wasn't sure what was happening. Ivy was still compressing the wound in my back and I had to hold onto the side of the seat to refrain from moaning. The pheromones she was releasing were turning the pain into pleasure. The fact that there was a lot of pleasure meant that there would have been a lot of pain. I winced when I tried to imagine the intensity of the agony Piscary would have cause me, having not been saved. Though despite the searing pleasure coursing through my veins, my head felt light and it felt like my organs seemed to be playing Marco Polo inside me. "Ivy," I complained. "I don't feel good."

"You've lost a lot of blood." The way her voice cracked at the last word made me realize just how much she was worried about me. I mean, Ivy was always worried about me. I'd go out with Kisten for a small four hours and when I'd come home she'd be desperately checking me for bite marks. Wait…bite marks? Is that what she was always worried about?

I should have expected what happened next. But I didn't. The moment the thought of having been bitten popped into my mind, Ivy begun to freak out. She must have somehow knew the direction of my thoughts from the fear that was lurking beneath my skin and crawling everywhere around my body. I didn't think I had had something to fear, though. Ivy seemed to think otherwise.

"Rachel!" Her voice was filled with panic. "Rachel, you have to tell me if he bit you. This isn't a joke. Did Piscary bite you? You know what will happen if we don't do anything about this. Rachel, were you bitten?"

I opened my mouth to tell her that she had basically repeated the same sentence thrice phrased differently and that I wasn't a six-year old who needed to be asked something over and over again but no sound came through my airway. Ivy kept calling my name, panic lacing her tone. I couldn't speak. I turned my head towards her and shook it, to show her that I hadn't been bitten.

"Are you sure?" Ivy asked me, clearly wanting to be certain.

My head bobbed up and down. At least…I was pretty sure he hadn't bitten me.

"Rachel, are you sure?"

It took me a couple of seconds before nodding this time, and seeing me hesitation, Ivy suddenly grabbed my hair and pulled my head back away from her to check my neck for marks. I let her get a good look at me without complaining. When she saw that my neck was clean, Ivy let it fall gently back down onto the seat, probably having seen that her previous movements had been slightly harsh. I didn't have time to react as she slid my torn halter top forward and to the floor of the car. My eyes opened in shock and I simply sat there at she turned me around and begun prodding my skin for any signs of teeth penetration. Yes, I was wearing a bra but the feeling was still extremely awkward. Ivy, however, didn't seem to be showing any signs of remorse or discomfort as her fingers slid their way across my barely covered breasts to trace a path to my belly button, pushing slightly the entire way. The palms of her hands only just caressed my suddenly sensitive flesh as the tips of her fingers danced upon me. Mmm…so good.

Wait…okay, no. Did I say that? I totally didn't mean that. Honestly. Pheromones were clouding the air with their annoying consequences and I was having dirty thoughts about my roommate and best friend. The was so not like me. I mean, this context and situation were really not helping my suppression of the thoughts, but I finally managed after a while. It was a good thing that the vampire didn't notice anything, or else I would have been in real trouble. Stupid pheromones. Stupid Piscary. Stupid thoughts. And Ivy? Oh I would definitely lick her any day.

Wow…please disregard that last comment.

By the time my mind had returned to moderate sanity, I realized with a flabbergasted expression that Ivy had traced her way between my thighs. Well Jesus Christ how the hell was I supposed to stop the images from flooding my mind with their irrationality, now? Being in the most convenient position to sense my arousal, Ivy—whom I saw peek up from between my thighs…which I must admit was slightly the way I had been imagining things in a different context—glared at me, her eyes black as sin. She probably would have looked pissed, if it weren't for the small smile I saw quirking the corners of her lips. She was evidently enjoying the feeling she was giving me.

"Rachel," she intoned, slightly more serious than her expression portrayed. "Stop it. I'm checking you for bite marks. There are certain places vampires generally bite their victims, and this just happens to be one of them. I'm going to check you over completely, and if you don't let me, I'm sorry to say I'll be checking anyway."

"Check away," I giggled at the thought of Ivy between my legs again.

She rolled her eyes and once again begun prodding the insides of my thighs with such delicacy I couldn't help but imagine what this would all feel like if I weren't close to having bled to death after a master vampire had possibly bitten me and thrown me against a glass cabinet. My life was pretty sweet, when you come to think that all of that lead to a vampire nestling between my parted legs. I giggled again as her fingers hit a nerve and it tickled. Okay, I had to admit that I kinda liked being high on blood loss. Everything was always so funny in those situations.

"You're clean," I heard Ivy whisper distantly. Her voice didn't sound disappointed, on the contrary, however there was a slight note to her tone that made me shiver. Though it wasn't fear that had made my skin crawl with millions of chilling goose bumps. It was anticipation.

I suddenly felt cold. The only heat that I could feel upon my skin were the warm hands of Ivy that hadn't been removed from inches above my knees, holding my legs apart. She was staring right at my crotch…which I hate to admit was really arousing. Just the expression her features displayed were probably enough to get me off right then and there. The sense of desire that soared it's way right to my core before exploding to finally shoot off into every other direction until I was completely filled. I shivered again, and Ivy's hands trailed their way up to my hips, bringing an indescribable warmth along with them. I wanted to arch into her touch, but my body felt numb.

"Rachel, you're skin is so cold." She brought her hands up to my stomach and sprawled her fingers across my proudly muscular abdominals. I let my head fall back as my eyes closed at the soothing touch of her fingers. It was amazing—more than amazing. Beyond any description combining words of the English language to form a phrase.

I heard a pleasurable moan escape my lips and then cursed myself for doing so. Ivy had obviously heard me. Damn. Her fingers curled into my stomach so that her nails were slightly digging into my bare skin. And God did it feel good. What had me worried, however, was that she wasn't even playing upon my scar.

"Ivy," I whispered her name, finding my voice once again.

"Yes?" Her own voice was less than a whisper, husky with anticipation.

To be completely honest, I hadn't really expected her to answer. It was supposed to be one of those sweet moments where someone just whispers the other's name and they leave it at that. So, I posed the first question to pop into my mind. "Why did you have to take my top off?"

"A popular place for vampire bites is between the breasts." Her voice held a hint of disappointment, but she didn't know I wasn't done yet.

"No." My voice was an octave lower than usual, almost matching the huskiness of hers. "Why did you have to take it off?"

I knew very well that she knew Piscary wouldn't have taken the time to remove my halter top, bite me between the breasts, and place it back on. In addition to that evident fact, there was no blood anywhere along my torso to give any indication that he had bitten me. And I was pretty sure that after my second question, she knew that I knew that she had known…if that makes sense.

Ivy inhaled deeply before answering. "I needed to see what you looked like."

I wasn't thinking. My brain was an immense pile of mush at that moment and I was utterly incapable of making proper decisions. That was the sole reason the following words exited my parted lips. "Do I get to see what you look like?"

I had never seen Ivy really surprised before. She could always tell when something was coming, and she would act according to her surroundings and the impact her words would have. I looked down at her now, and saw her eyes wide open and her eyebrows all the way up her forehead. She was definitely surprised. I probably didn't help the situation when I giggled again. She made me laugh. Her eyes closed at the sound and her features contorted into an indescribable sadness. What did I do?

"Rachel, you're incoherent."

Oh my God it looked like she was going to cry. What did I do!? I whimpered pathetically as Ivy's hands left my shivering skin and she stood away from me. I brought my hands to my biceps and squeezed to try and remain warm as Ivy closed the door behind her and walked around the hood to the driver's side.

"Sorry," she whispered as she started the car and turned the heater onto full blast. I wasn't quite sure what she was apologizing for, but it probably had something to do with the fact that I didn't have a shirt on because of her. My body slowly warmed up as the heat coming from the vents enveloped my body, but all I could think of was Ivy. This physical heat only lingered on the surface of my skin, whereas the warmth from her fingers had penetrated my very soul. A thought flickered through me, and I closed my eyes. Ivy had said I was incoherent. Most likely because of the fact that my blood loss was so great. Realization slapped me in the face as I became aware of the fact that this incoherence led to verity. My logic wasn't present to counter the feelings I believed to have for my best friend. All that was left was indisputable emotion.

I hastily sat up on the seat and held onto the dash for balance. My seatbelt wasn't fastened due to the position of my seat, and therefore it was slightly difficult to remain steady. My eyes were wide and staring directly at the vampire driving beside me.

"Ivy," I rushed her name but paused two seconds before continuing, my eyebrows shooting up in surprise in comprehension. "I think I'm in love with you."

My body painfully lurched forward as she slammed onto the breaks and turned to face me, her features now contorted into aggression. Her words almost sounded like growls. "Rachel. Don't ever say that again. It's not funny."

She didn't believe me? Well it had been slightly sudden, but still…she didn't believe me? Ouch to self-esteem. "No, Ivy. I-I love you. I mean I didn't want to believe it before either but it's the fact that I don't have to think about it that makes it true."

It was as if the words all wished to exit my mouth at the same time and were tumbling over one another to do so. I knew almost exactly what I had wanted to tell her, but I was pretty sure all she had heard was a series of mumbles because her answer wasn't exactly the one I had been expecting. Her head turned to face the road and she once again started the car, moving at a slow speed.

"Ivy!" I tried to get her attention by touching her shoulder but as soon as she turned to me, I had the distinct impression she had heard exactly what I had been telling her. Ivy's pupils were fully dilated, which was eerily intriguing. I wanted to see them closer, I wanted to make her lose control. I wanted to be the one to send her off the edge of willpower and the sole person capable of bringing her back to complete lucidity. Why? Don't ask me that…I have no idea.

My mood lightened as I realized she was slowing down to pull over in an empty parking lot. She set the car on park, and turned to me abruptly. I jerked back unintentionally at the suddenness of her movements, despite the fact that she hadn't even laid a finger on me. Yet. I could tell by the way that she simply sat there, perfectly still and flawlessly beautiful, that she was waiting for me to continue. It took me all my strength to keep my hands at my sides, and not hugging my shoulders. The heat was moderate enough for her to know that if I did so, it would not be because I was cold. And now wasn't exactly the right time and place to be shy about Ivy seeing me in my bra.

I took in a deep breath to try and slow my words. And failed miserably. "I don't know exactly how I came to the conclusion that you—well that we—that I..." I paused, dumbstruck at how desperate I sounded. Ivy parted her lips to say something, and just like that, the words resumed their tumbling from my mouth. "…It just happened. Exactly how ninety percent of the other crap that goes on in my life occurs. I never meant for it to come to me this way. But it did. And I know how long you've been waiting for an answer, that I've never really given you anything concrete to work off of. I just think that the fact that I don't have to think this through anymore has made me realize how much I care for you. What I...feel about you."

I sucked in a huge breath after having said all that in one exhale, and grinned. I was proud of myself. Ivy's face remained perfectly neutral as she eyed me over. Strangely, the desire to cover myself from her gaze slowly dissipated over time while her eyes roamed over every possible inch of my body. It felt nice. Her eyes lingered for a moment too long at my chest area, but she knew I wasn't going to stop her so her bottom lip found it's way between her teeth as she continued to ogle me. I couldn't help but think that she was so darn adorable sitting there, staring at me in immaculate fascination. The simple fact that Ivy Tamwood was gawking at me like I was a piece of candy sent shivers of anticipation down my spine. And it totally upped my pride. Ivy Tamwood. This vampire could have any being—living or deceased—she desired, no questions asked. But me? It was obvious from the very beginning when I had moved in with her that she wanted me. And I stepped all over her, hardly giving her what she craved.

Feeling like a pathetic slug, I continued talking, since it was evident that Ivy wasn't assured. "You told me a while ago that it was all or nothing." I stared into her midnight eyes, a smile quirking the corners of my lips when I thought of what to say next. "Nothing sucks, Ivy. Seriously."

I think that finally got to her. Ivy's features relaxed, and she sighed deeply. Her eyes closed, though I somehow still felt her gaze fixed to mine. "I know," she whispered, barely audible.

It slightly frustrated me to see that even though her posture and tone clearly indicated her desire to pounce at me right then so we could finally mix love and blood, she stayed perfectly still, her grip tightening on the wheel so that her knuckles slowly turned white. Damn it, did I have to do everything around here? I shifted positions so that I was sitting on my knees, facing Ivy. Her fingers were tightening around the wheel, and I could see it took the vampire all her restraint not to open her eyes. In an unconscious movement, her tongue came out to moisten her lips before she realized what she was doing and quickly retracted it. A goofy grin came over me. Looks like one couldn't really surprise Ivy Tamwood twice in 24 hours.

I'd never kissed a girl before, and I didn't know exactly how to begin. Though before I could completely think it through, one of my hands had already risen to cup her cheek. Her skin was so smooth, unblemished. The moment we touched, her eyes opened to reveal an almost unnoticeable rim of chocolate brown around her dilated pupils. My pulse quickened as Ivy slowly turned her head into my hand and kissed the inside of my palm ever so gently. I vaguely heard her whisper my name, but my mind had become a blur. I realized that to love Ivy, I couldn't think. Because when I thought, I would think of the social influences; I'd think of how this couldn't possibly work; how if I left Ivy, she would definitely choose to become an undead rather than live with the pain I would have caused her. Once I crossed this line, there was no going back. But most of all, I would think of Kisten. I was in love with Ivy, but Kist still held a large portion of my heart.

Nevertheless, I didn't want to think about Kisten right now. I shut my brain down, and relaxed into Ivy's touch. She had placed a hand behind my neck, though her arm was extended to it's full capacity. She wasn't pulling me closer, she wasn't making any initial movements. It all had to be me. I understood that it wasn't because she didn't want to do anything—on the contrary. She wanted me to be the one to make every first move, so that I could be assured that I really wanted all of her. And I did. There was no point in denying the painfully obvious anymore. I did want Ivy. Because "nothing" really did suck. And I was ready for it all.

My body moved forward, and her hand stayed limp behind my neck to pull closer as I did. Our lips met, and it was an detonation of bliss to explode within my very soul. I hadn't imagined it like this, not at all. Her lips were smooth and warm, whereas every other one I had had with a member of the male gender were rough and ordinary. She was being moderately submissive below me as I pushed into her, urging her further. And yet she let herself fall back with me so that her back was crushed against the car door. Her fingers were at my back, playfully tugging at my bra straps from behind. I moaned into her mouth and was rewarded with her nails digging in my skin. My hands fell to her sides to grip her waist and pull her closer into me as she groaned into my touch.

The car was still running, and I could hear the passing cars zooming beside us. Luckily, the windows were tinted. She pushed me back and I whimpered. I really liked kissing Ivy. I never wanted to stop. Her curves were incredibly desirable, and the way her mouth moved against mine was something I doubt ever being capable of forgetting. This was so much different than when she had kissed me in the church while playing upon my scar. This time it was just Ivy the woman. Her vampire aspect had been removed to leave the most gorgeous woman I could ever imagine.

She smiled, seeing my disappointment in the separation, but put her hand up as if dismissing the regret. "Still want to see what I look like?"

My eyes widened in comprehension. Ivy Tamwood was going to strip for me. No. Freaking. Way. I swallowed nervously and nodded, and her smile grew, she was evidently pleased that she could render me speechless as I was. She shifted her weight so that she was facing me as well, on her knees. Her hands caressed their way down her sides, making it all the more entertaining to watch as her fingers slipped lower just shy of her breasts and she closed her eyes in pleasure. My groin tightened at the sight of her ecstasy, and I had to hold my hands back from touching her.

Ivy's hands stopped moving just above the waist band of her leather pants and she arched a perfectly sculpted eyebrow at me as if asking permission. My body clenched in anticipation and I over-enthusiastically bobbed my head. Her smile never faltered as—with an excruciating deliberate slowness—Ivy pulled her top over her head to let it pool at her feet. Her black eyes were open now, and she was staring at me intently. My eyes roamed all over her generous, covered breasts and her moan made me realize I was unconsciously leaning in closer.

"Rachel," she breathed. "Do you have any idea how insanely wild you're making me right now?" I knew she was talking about the fact that she could scent my increasing arousal and that it must have been turning her on so much at the moment.

"I have my theories," I said devilishly, my intent full on making her hot and wet and incredibly aroused until she couldn't handle it anymore. "But why don't you show me instead so we can make sure we're on the same page, here."

It simply took those words, and she leapt at me, amazingly avoiding the roof and walls of the confined car area. Vampires, I thought to myself. I'll never get how they do those things. Ivy pinned me to the laid-back seat, my hands above my head. Her lips trailed kisses in the valley between my breasts as I squirmed in vain to escape her hold so that I could touch her myself. I threw my head back as I realized there was no possible way to get on top of her, deciding I should enjoy the exquisite pleasure while it lasted. Ivy's body fit perfectly atop mine, and it was all I could do not to think that we might have been made for one another; her body moulding into mine as our souls joined in blissful ecstasy.

My body arched up into hers as I felt the first glimpse of her sharp canines brushing ever-so-gently against the skin between my breasts. I moaned her name so loudly I was pretty sure the passing cars could hear me. That was all the motivation it took for her to slip her fangs inside of me, waiting for no further contentment before beginning to pull on the blood that flowed beneath my flawless flesh. Her knee jerked up between my thighs and pushed up into me, making me cry out. I would have grabbed her sides at that, but my hands were securely above my head, incapacitating my movements. I knew writhing beneath her for a while would send her over the edge of arousal, though I also knew that using all my strength to try and escape her hold would give her the impression I wanted her to let go. And I didn't want her to let go.

A soft sound of content escaped Ivy as her mouth remained locked to my chest, her tongue softly caressing the wound she had created as pleasure coursed through me to nestle itself in my groin. She kept pushing into me with her knee, the feeling a rush to add to the pleasure her teeth were giving me. It was indescribable. The ecstasy was far greater than I had remembered. And the fact that my hands remained pinned above my head merely added to the sensation of giving myself over to Ivy. I knew she wouldn't bind me. I trusted her. And she was well aware of that.

My blood began to pound as I realized I was nearing my climax, and I thrust against Ivy's knee as my mind was lost to lust and ecstasy, swimming in a world beyond reality. This was better than reality. Slowly, Ivy's hands released mine to that I could wrap my arms around her back, feeling the soft texture of her skin against mine.

She didn't take much of my blood, seeing as I had already lost a fair amount of blood due to Piscary. Just enough so that we could both be sated by her incredible ability to create pleasure. Her body weight was almost nothing as she lay atop me, lapping gently at the blood that had slowed it's flow. Despite the thoughts of Kisten roaming around mindlessly in my head, the thoughts of everyone's reaction, especially Jenks, it felt right. Here, beside Ivy. I felt like I finally belonged. Like there was finally someone I could trust completely, someone who wouldn't hesitate to risk anything for my happiness, and someone who I wouldn't hesitate to risk anything for either. All this time I had been denying how I felt for Ivy. But being here, in her arms, flesh to flesh, was what I finally realized I needed most in this world. Not only a dear friend, but someone to trust, someone to love.

I curled up in her arms, and she shifted positions to accommodate me. Looks like we'd be spending a while in the car, after all. My eyes closed, and I breathed in Ivy's unique scent. Nothing compared to it. And I would be able to smell it all the time from now on. Multiple thoughts flitted through my mind at a speed that was most likely inhuman, and one of them caught my attention. My jaw clenched in dissatisfaction at the memory of something vile, repulsive, and downright wrong. The fact that Piscary had made me lose a vast amount of blood, and that Ivy had now bitten me could only lead to one course of action for my strength to replenish. Ugh. Brimstone.