note: I'd like to thank Lueur-de-Laube for helping me out with this chapter! It would have taken me days to get it done without your help :)

Poisoned Scarlet


She can't understand why he would say his skills as a pianist would never match up to his brothers.

She leaned against the door frame, entranced with the way his fingers swept across the keys. There was an elegance to each motion which she couldn't place; a passion in the way he seemed to sway with the melancholic melody.

Each chord struck sharply, made her catch her breath. She swore she stopped breathing when he raced through a rather complicated segment in the piece before it calmed and continued its forlorn tale. Maka did not understand very much about music; hadn't the slightest idea what a staff was or what the names of all the notes were. She wouldn't be able to tell you if you had missed a few notes, if your technique was all wrong, if the tempo was lacking or rushed.

But as she listened to his private recital, watching the growing grin on his face, Maka didn't need to know all of the technicalities to know that he was superbly talented. She decided that if he could make her feel as if someone had turned her inside out, he was more than qualified.

It became quiet once more.

It ached to know the piece was over.

"That was..."

He only spared her one glance before turning back to the instrument, rubbing a key with his finger as he anxiously awaited her verdict. She'd known of his skills in playing the piano for a while now. He had told her so at his brothers concert and, although she had been excited at one point, when he rudely shot her down, she hadn't asked about it again. But it was always there, on the tip of her tongue, and when they'd snuck out of the Reception Hall, in search of a dark nook so he could have his way with her, they'd stumbled upon this music room.

They'd stumbled upon a beautiful grand piano.

And he decided, after catching her hopeful look, what the hell? Whether she liked it or not, it wouldn't make a difference.

He'd still love that girl.


His finger froze on the spot.

"That was amazing, Soul! You're – I never knew you were this good!" Maka laughed, clapping cheerfully. She leaned off the wall, giddy with the intoxicating emotions he'd sprung from a simple song. "I'm so happy you decided to play for me! I wasn't disappointed at all! You're so much better than your brother, Soul!"

Her claps faded, along with her laughter, and still he did not move.

But when he did, it was his wry smile that caught her attention.

"You... still have a shitty taste in music."

But even his deflective words couldn't erase the content glimmer in his eyes.

Maka simply smiled.


His fingers curled around her stockings. The mouth of the piano dug into her lower back, creating a shriek of sound when Soul pushed her against it. Her hands slipped, crashing against the keys, yet the dissonance was vague to her addled mind. She could only focus on the way his mouth moved with hers with an unmatched hunger and how her stockings tore down her leg.

His slammed the fallboard down on the keys to silence the instrument, lifting her to sit on top of the glossy top of the piano. He kicked the stool out of the way, not bothering with it when it tipped over, and palmed her breast, impatiently pulling down the straps of her dress.

Her arms wrapped around his neck, fingers twining in the ends of his hair. He kissed her throat. She groaned, tugging impatiently on his hair to bring his mouth back to hers. His teeth bit into her lip, sending spikes of heat through her body.

In the back of her mind, she thought of her mother and how concerned she must be that her ring girl had not shown up yet after excusing herself to the ladies room. She thought of the guests who wished to meet her; her mothers friends, which desired to converse with her; dancing with her new step-father as tradition called for; being a good host in place of her busy-body mom...

Maka seized his tie and tore it off, grabbing his red dress shirt and yanking it open. Buttons scattered the floor but that was the least of her concerns. He hastily shrugged off his blazer, smirking as he tossed his shirt aside. She heard material rip again: the back of her dress was torn cleanly down the middle as if sliced by a knife.

"You could have unzipped it!" Maka argued.

"You could have unbuttoned my shirt." Soul smirked against the hot skin of her neck. She dismissed her protest when his teeth sunk into her neck, deeply enough that she felt pricks of pain but they were quickly overruled by pleasure when his tongue found her mouth again.

Maka laid back and arched off the piano, kicking off her mauled dress. His hands ran up the curves of her body, massaged her perky breasts while she swallowed down her soft mews. His breath was a hot steam of air across the flat of her stomach, her lace panties. She tossed her head to the side, let her eyes fall on the tall door that led to a red-rug hall draped with tapestries and evening lamps after each nameless portrait.

He pushed her up the length of the piano, kneeled upon the fallboard and loomed over her. She cried out when he pushed into her with a hiss, squeezed his hand when he twined their fingers together. The lit chandelier that hung with droplets of crystals blurred all things except for his face; his intense stare, fixating her although she wanted nothing more than to look away and allow the sensations of their love making to freely wreck her from the inside.

She bit her tongue and propped herself up on her elbows, clutching his shoulder as he thrust into her. She stabbed the spike of her heel into the crease in the fallboard, using it as a lever so she could meet his rough thrusts equally. Her trembling hand slipped slowly upon the foggy surface of the piano as it began to get harder and harder to swallow her cries.

"S..Soul..." She gasped.

He grunted, grabbing her arm to pull her back up when he saw she was slipping.

She moaned his name, unable to keep her head up anymore. The light seemed to sway as she stared at the ceiling and she closed her eyes, parted her lips in a voiceless cry when he quickened his pace. But just as a loud cry tore her throat, he stopped, and she snapped her eyes open to protest viciously when he grabbed her and unceremoniously flipped her on her stomach.

The surface of the piano was distressingly cold as she struggled to crawl on her knees. He gave her no recovery time before he pushed into her again, stalling her mid-way from lifting herself up. "What are you doing? Soul?" Her short breath misted the surface, cheek pressed against it, and her hands curled into tight fists as the pressure built inside of her urgently.

"What's it look like I'm doing?" A hand dragged up her body, another one cupping her breast and rolling a nipple between fingers. She keened when he pulled them. "You're smart," he purred into her ear. "Figure it out." Her head turned and he kissed her, tongue sliding into her mouth as his cock slid into her again and again.

Her release was imminent, just like his. She knew it from the way he gasped into against her ear and how his grip on her hips tightened to a nearly painful level; nails digging into her flesh. She was panting harshly, whimpering and sobbing his name in mercy as her body was consumed with unbearable heat. She shut her eyes, on the precipice of ecstasy, and bit her lip hard enough to draw blood when his thrusts reached deeply within her.

It was all she could take.

Throwing her head back, she cried out her pleasure, desperately trying to hold onto something as her back arched and her legs quivered and her arms shook with the force of her orgasm. Sparks shattered across her closed eyelids, his name escaping her throat in a shrill cry. His arm wove around her stomach, gripping her in place as they rode out the waves of their climax together.

Her chest heaved, hands clutching his arm across her torso, thighs spread across the surface that reflected their bodies. She let her head rest against his shoulder while he slumped against her, lips touching the rapid pulse on her neck. She wondered if he could feel just how hard her heart was pounding; how out of breath and exhausted she felt as everything began to regain its color and texture.

There was a faint flow of chatter and laughter that came from down the hall. She wondered if it had always been there. It drifted through the room that was now silent, returned her awareness to the situation at hand. Her mother was likely looking for her now; worried for her daughter, whom had never returned from the ladies room. Her dress was in shreds; torn by Soul's hand in their frenzy. And the piano – the smooth, glorious, piano that was now filthy with their hand prints and sweat.

"Shit that was the best one to date."

Maka couldn't help it: she laughed. It was such a ridiculous scenario: fucking in the private music room of such a fancy hotel, her mothers wedding reception just down the hall. She could only imagine what a tale this would be. Her laughter faded to soft chuckles as his lips pressed against her neck affectionately. Kneeling on the fallboard, which had surprisingly not given with his weight, Soul properly pressed her against his chest.

Her hand came up to comb through his hair.

"Hey, Maka..." He whispered. She could feel her heart pick up again. "What do you think your dad would do if I told him I wasn't going anywhere for a long time?"

The implications in his sentence wrenched her heart with hope. She twisted away from him, sliding her leg across the piano in an effort to rightly face him. He watched her idly, not at all ashamed to be bare under her gaze. She didn't let her eyes stray, regardless: she focused only on his eyes, sitting herself upon the edge and looking up at him with a warm smile.

"He'd total your bike."

"No way – that's not cool." Soul cringed but pressed his hands on her cheeks. He leaned down to capture her lips with his. They soon stretched into a devious grin. "I guess I'll just have to wreck you if he does, huh?"

Maka flushed. "Shut up! That sounds wrong in so many ways!"

"It's only wrong if you think it's wrong." Soul sang, dodging a swat of her hand. He fingered a strand of her hair, his hand following up the warmth of her cheek. He had been about to bring her in for another kiss when he heard the single worst sound in the entire world:

"Maka? Where are you?" Kami called, concernedly. "Maka?"

"Oh, shit." Soul immediately thought to execute Plan B. Then he remembered there was no Plan B, because he wasn't the type to think ahead to something as horrifying as getting caught in the act by his girlfriends mother. Thankfully, however, Maka was.

"Give me my dress! Hurry!" Maka insisted. Soul scrambled to pick up her mutilated dress, holding it out incredulously.

"Okay, there is no way you can pass that off as getting it stuck on the edge of something." Soul deadpanned.

"Just give it!" Maka snapped. He watched as she struggled into it, Kami's calls growing louder by the second. "What're you standing around for? Get dressed!"

Soul pulled on his pants, which were thankfully still in tact, but cursed his shirt. A few of the buttons were missing from when Maka tore it off him. He had been about to put on his blazer to hide the evidence of their tryst when Maka clucked her tongue, holding out her hand.

"Give it."

"What? But what about me?" He handed the blazer over to her, however, and watched as her once-mauled dress suddenly became presentable again. Soul eyed his shirt, rumpled from where Maka had fisted it, and the missing buttons that made it seem like he scarcely escaped a mob. "Damn it, did you have to rip it off?"

"Oh, get over it!" Maka rolled her eyes. She slipped on her stockings, grimacing when she noticed one of them was torn a little, and wiggled back into her shoes. Kami's calls were fading, possibly because she had turned down the hall; ignoring the music room. "You don't look that bad." She fixed his shirt in a way that hid the obvious signs of abuse. "There! See?"

"Yeah, now it only looks like I narrowly escaped rape." Soul sarcastically said.

Her bottom lip jutted out and she huffed, turning away. "You're exaggerating. You look fine. Just fix your hair." Maka fixed her own as she said this, adjusting his blazer on her shoulders. She had already taken two steps when she felt him reach out to her and pull her back to him. A complaint on the tip of her tongue, Maka hadn't expected the deep kiss he pulled her into.

"Alright," he drawled with a smirk. "Now we can leave." And he walked around her and to the door, whistling over his shoulder to snap her out of her daze. "C'mon, before your mom thinks we ran off to do something bad. Like smoke."

Maka sent him a dry look in reply. "Mama isn't dumb, Soul. If we take any longer, she'll know exactly what we were up to and she'll kick you out of the house."

"I'm so scared."

"I'm serious!"

"I'm serious, too." He snickered when she slapped his arm. "Seriously, what's the worst she could do?"

"She almost castrated my papa when she caught him with another woman when I was ten." Maka flatly told him. Soul's smile was wiped off his face instantly. "Almost got sent to the hospital and everything because it hurt too much."

"...That's just plain cruel, Maka."

Maka smiled thinly, the threat clear in her eyes. "Like mother, like daughter, right?"

"But I'd never cheat on you. I already swore I wouldn't." Soul uneasily reminded. They stood in the middle of the hall, no longer worrying about Kami and the consequences of their actions. Instead, they focused on this new problem that arouse between them: the coldness in Maka's eyes and the hardness in Soul's because of one thing. "Cheating isn't cool."

"You say that now, but..."

"No. I mean it." Soul stepped forward. She held her ground, guarded. "I could never cheat on you, Maka..." It was easier to say a second time around, Soul noticed idly. It didn't feel like someone was crushing his lungs; it didn't feel like he was being held captive. It was a relief, to get it off his chest. "I love you too much."

She sucked in a sharp breath.

"Maka," Soul warned, grabbing her arm. He caught the panic in her eyes before it registered in her mind. Maka shot her eyes to the floor, troubled with this new revelation. But she didn't push away from when he wrapped her in his arms, waiting for her to calm down enough to think. "Look, you don't have to say it back or anything if you don't want to." It would just hurt him that she wouldn't, he thought grimly, but not enough for him to ignore her. He couldn't ignore her for long; it was too hard to. He'd just have to try harder, that's all. "But just know that I wouldn't see someone behind your back. I don't need anyone else - you're enough." He mumbled into her hair. "You'll always be more than enough."

There was a seconds delay but she embraced him back, pressing her forehead against his chest. She could hear his heart pounding. He was nervous, she quietly realized, nervous yet he managed to look confident and unaffected. Always trying to be cool, she thought with a fond smile. Her hand pressed against his chest one last time, feeling the scar beneath. So close to death, she told herself, he could be taken from her at any moment without warning. Her hand fisted his shirt and she looked up, saying with a confidence he admired: "I love you, too, Soul."

He didn't say anything: he grinned and brought her into a kiss that sealed their declarations officially.

And Kami heard their private confessions from around the bend, a soft smile playing on her lips when she caught her daughters giggles when Soul whispered something into her ear. She looked down at her wedding band, the diamond whose sleek surfaces glistened under the dim light of the lamp above her.

Perhaps one day, Kami thought to herself, Maka would be the one finding herself admiring a wedding band of her own.

A/N: And it's finally over! That's right folks: this series has officially come to a close! Another story completed, now I have time to make another story! You guys ready for this one? It'll be a while before I post it up, since it'll be undergoing massive editing with the help of Lacrow, who thankfully agreed to work on it with me, but I'll keep you guys entertained with my infamous one-shots and perhaps a two shot here and there if you're lucky.

I'd like to thank all of you who followed this story until the end! You guys are just too awesome :)