Chapter 1

Bo was desperately shaking the limp body willing it to draw a breath, to give a shudder. "Lauren!" her squeak was like a banshee wail to her own ears and she flinched at the unsolicited association, "No, you can't!" The brunette raised a thoroughly shaking hand and slapped the pale cheek, then the other one, then the first one again. She kept slapping until red tinged the porcelain skin and the human gave a strangled gasp that sounded like the name of the loved one "Bo."

Relieved into half-hysterical sobs, the succubus pressed her lover to her chest, whispering self-recriminations, cursing her own lack of self-control, damning her urges. "I've nearly killed you, Lauren," she stuttered through the wet sounds of crying, "One moment I was in control and in a flash I lost it. The succubus overcame me."

"You ARE the succubus," the blonde doctor whispered back, her voice still tremulous and weak but her need to soothe the woman she loved greater than her own pain, "We both know it and you have to accept it the way I do. I accept your nature, Bo, hear me, I do."

But Bo was shaking her head as vigorously as she had shaken her lover into consciousness a minute before. "Yes, the way you accept a tornado for the simple reason you can do nothing about it. I am dangerous for you, more dangerous than a tornado as I am so much closer," the brunette head dropped muffling her last words to the point of inaudibility, "I am still a monster".

Kenzi made a stormy entrance into the house, the house which they rightfully called the shack, so infinitely below the sumptuous residence of the Santiagos. A very disgruntled representative of that family was trudging behind her, launching time and again a soothing remark at the girl's resolute spine. The last attempt at reconciliation gained him the enface view of a livid Kenzi who suddenly stopped in the middle of what passed for their living room and turned to him her arms akimbo. "I get it, Hale, I am your girl-friend, you love me, your family are a bunch of arrogant snobs and you are nothing like them," she summarized his scrappy admonishments, "And I also saw your face when we were at the Santiagos and I got my usual dose of put-downs. You were brimming with pity with a dollop of indignation and a smudge of embarrassment and that smudge, Hale, that was a bit too much for me. I don't care for your pity but to cause you shame, even if it was a second worth of a knee jerk genetically imposed reaction?" Kenzi stopped for air and deflated at the sight of her boy-friend desperate expression.

"I am just so tired of being a human Cinderella," she whispered coming to rest her head against his jacketed shoulder. Hale looped a long arm around her tiny body and lowered his head ready to whisper into her ear the "I love you, Kenz. I have never been ashamed at you" spiel but Bo's far from subtle stomping downstairs broke the moment.

The succubus in her bright red kimono stilled at the foot of the crumbling stairs and waved a half-hearted hello at the couple. One look at her scrunched up face sent Kenzi flying out of the siren's embrace and straight to her bbf's side. "What gives, BoBo?" she intoned but there was so much more beneath the words, which the older woman had no difficulty to read for the besties' code it was.

"I didn't mean to ruin your moment," the succubus went on in the same code and the human girl beamed readily, "Me and Hale were saying nightie-nightie, see-you-when-I'm-less-pissed-at-you sweet nothings."

The siren covered his disappointed with a trademark broad smile and backed to the door. "Have a good gossip before going to bed, girls. And I'll see you, Kenz, tomorrow, and I do mean more than just see, mu girl," he was careful to stick to a light joking tone as he made it out of the shack.

As soon as the slightly unbalanced front door swung shut with a dull thump Bo flopped onto the couch like a deflated balloon closely followed by a much smaller and less shapely one of Kenzi.

"I almost killed her," the succubus muttered, tears threatening to make a re-appearance, "I nearly killed Lauren because I couldn't rein in my succubus when we were making love. And how was your day?"

"I screwed up royally at the dinner with Hale's family, his father called me an ignorant bad-mannered jumped-up human at the carefully calculated moment when I was supposed to be taking a bath-room break and I was actually eavesdropping. And you know what? I didn't hear a murmur of protest from Hale."

"Maybe he just knows when to save his breath?" Bo tentatively suggested.

"Saving breath is keeping it shut in my book. Hale started making excuses on my behalf. Troubled family background, difficult childhood, that's not her fault she's a human, that sort of thing," the raven-haired girl heaved a sigh, "But that pales in comparison. Back to you, bestie. Where's Lolo? Bed, emergency ward or body bag?"

"Bed, exhausted but alive, sleeping it off," the succubus grumbled, "One day I may well be the end of Lauren."

"But for now you are her joy," Kenzi countered, "My guess, she's more than aware of the risks and more than willing to take them."

Bo, however, was not that easily deflected by her overpowering grim line of thinking and she suddenly leaned forward to grab the other girl's arm, "I am lethal, Kenzi, lethal to anyone, except you and Dyson. You – as I never was attracted to you in that way…"

"A very sarcastic thanks from the not attractive enough here," the human girl cut in.

"And Dyson – cos he is as strong as I am and can stop me," the succubus went on, "So either I live the daily terror of killing Lauren or I let her go."

"Which is also a way of killing her," Kenzi mumbled not sure if she should be saying that loud enough for her friend to her.

"If only I could be normal," the words left Bo's mouth in a half-sob, "be human."

"Revise your definition of normal, sista," Kenzi sighed her own regrets running in quite the opposite direction, "I was just practically spat on for being that kind of normal."