DISCLAIMER: I make no money from the writing of this piece. It is purely done for the pleasure of doing so. All credit for the creations of characters used belongs to Kresley Cole.

a/n: Discovered these books by accident. Read three books with their 400 page-ness in three days WHILE working a ten hour shift each day. Yes, I like this pairing in the series. Want it like...burning. Most probably won't understand until they read the books, but Lothaire is my man. I'd do him. :)

Sweet Phenix

There was no ecstasy on earth like this. The Valkyrie's neck was in his hand and their eyes were meeting. She was smiling that strange smile she did and Lothaire loathed every moment of it. Insight over foresight, he growled silently.

As if she knew what he were about, the Valkyrie's smile only sharpened. She blew him a kiss, all sass and spunk…

That is until he snapped his wrist so easily to the right and disengaged her from play.

Her body crumpled before him but he was reluctant to let it drop. Instead he carefully laid the Phenix down to the ground, his fangs lengthening for a taste of her blood. Reluctantly, he withdrew. The endgame would not care for him to taste her now…

Valkyrie, he hissed silently. All he loathed and yet all he longed for.

Already he could see her immortal healing taking place. She was looking up at him—from where he stood guard above her—with something akin to pique. "Pepperoni is better," she snapped a minute later as she shot upright, the tiny claws on her hand curling up for the ready. "And we're not done with this game."

Lothaire groaned, feeling his body hardened as he faced her. Long had they battled and long had they evaded. One day, one day soon, the time would arrive would she when be able to befuddle him no more. "Sweet Phenix," he gasped as he reached for her once more. She easily allowed him to lay hands upon her—the trust in her amazing despite their differences. "You should rise once more."

With that, he snapped her neck again.