Adagio

Angyl & Orithain

September 2004

He learned what passion was at the knee of a madman. He also learned fear and pleasure and pain. And they all came out in the music. The madman was centuries dead, but the passion remained. The passion allowed him to achieve greatness over and over, under so many names, in so many rebirths.

It fueled him, fed him, clothed him, inspired and tormented him. The music flowed through him like water from a raging riveróclear, violent, tempestuous, but at times a gently soothing melody.

Heíd been called many things in his long lifeóprodigy, savant, angel, devil, demon lover and virtuoso. Xiomar found the names amusing, the connotations even more so. After centuries of life he was all these things and more. He simply was.

It was well past midnight, the autumn air crisp to the point of cold, but Xio no longer felt the temperature. The streets were quiet when he finally left the symphony hall, having dallied as long as he could in order to avoid the throngs of fans and those silly human boys and girls who treated him as many treated those boy bands. It amused him that he was considered young and beautiful enough to be labeled an Ďidolí. Once upon a time heíd been feared as a god and as a devil, and now he was a pretty face with an even prettier talent.

Normally Xio lapped up the attention as both his due and his current drug of choice, but tonight he was feeling introspective. Tonight he was more than playing the music, he was living it. The fire burned in him, passion sang as heíd made the strings of his violin sing earlier that night. And he was hungry.

Leaning against a cold brick wall, surrounded by graffiti, Kelson Davies wondered if tonight was going to be the night that he didnít make it. He was cold and tired and hungry, and he was at the point that he really didnít give a damn if he lived or died. He remained in the light cast by the streetlight, knowing it made him look almost ethereal with his pale skin and dark hair, but car after car drove past without stopping.

"Not gonna last much longer, are you?" sneered another of the street boys, a redhead who called himself Irish, as he strutted past on his way to one of the cars. The two of them had taken an instant dislike to each other when theyíd met nearly three years earlier, not long after Kel had taken to the streets.

Glaring after him, Kel reminded himself that letting the stuck-up bastard win by default was no plan of his. It wasnít much of a reason to live, but it worked for him, and when he saw an expensive sportscar turn down the street, he moved toward the curb, body flowing sensually beneath the skintight black jeans and cropped top that were all that he wore. Suddenly, rather than being a morose-looking youngster who screamed Ďjailbaití, he exuded pure sex.

The others on the street took one look at Kel and knew that suddenly he was Ďoní. If they wanted any money that night, theyíd best try another corner, because no one was going to look at them with him around.

Pulling up and taking a good look at the local talent, Xio stepped out of the car and leaned against the hood. First a redhead approached him, blatantly selling, and Xio gave him a casual once-over until movement from the alley caught his eye. Dio mio, that one is sex incarnate. He is what I crave.

Walking past the redheaded child without so much as another glance, Xio let the young god come to him. Taking the raven-haired beautyís hand in his, he kissed it elegantly and led him towards his car, brushing the other whore out of his way as he opened the passenger door.

"You will be my inamorato, my companion, tonight, wonít you, my beautiful one?"

"That all depends," Kel purred, leaning close to let the other man feel his body heat. "How much do you want me?" This guy didnít feel like a cop, but he couldnít be sure. Not till he raised the issue of payment.

"Pah, money isnít a problem," Xio replied, taking out a wallet and handing the young man five hundred dollar bills from a wad of cash. "What will this give me?"

"Five hours," Kel replied, hand falling to the trickís groin, and he didnít have to fake the murmur of approval at what he found. The man was big; now if only he knew how to use it. "Fucking and sucking. No marking, no golden showers or scat, no bareback. If you want to hurt me, it depends what you want, and if I agree, itís extra."

"And how much for the remainder of the night?" the virtuoso asked after he had shut the car door and rounded to his own side, climbing in next to the rent boy. Not bothering with a seatbelt, the vampire took off at reckless speeds, heading for the home that was his to use for the duration of his stay in Boston.

Startled, Kel blinked at him, then shrugged. "A thousand and Iím all yours till morning." His fingers explored a bit more while they were stopped at a red light. "Mmmm, nice. Is this all for me?"

"Mmm," Xio answered noncommittally as he looked both ways and shot through the stop. Even if a cop did pull him over, the immortal wouldnít get a ticket. He would simply will the officer to forget and continue as he was, for such was the power of vampires.

And Xiomar ranked among the oldest of his kind that still survived, born in the time of the Roman Empire when Nero sat on the throne, Nero, the man who had taught a young Christian boy the violin and many of the proclivities that had stayed with Xio throughout the centuries, the most important being his love of youths though he was physically a young man himself.

Soon the city was left behind, and Xio opened the car up a little more. A squealing turn of the wheel and they were racing down a side road that led to an automatic gate which opened almost magically and shut behind them. Gravel spraying, the Italian sports car came to a halt in front of the massive estate house, and Xio climbed out, his black trench coat billowing around him as he did so.

"Come, bello, you look cold and hungry. I cannot have you fainting when I am taking you, now can I?"

Kel hesitated, looking around warily. He hadnít quite bargained for this when heíd gotten into the car, not being taken so far away with no way back to what he laughingly called home. "Where are we?" he demanded as he got out of the car, keeping his distance from the john. If worst came to worst, he could run for it.

"The house that the symphony hall so graciously found for me to rent when I agreed to play for them," Xiomar replied with an offhanded shrug. "It is a little small for my taste, but it is much better than anything in town. I require privacy and space when I practice. I do not need nosy neighbors interrupting my practice or fans trying to break into my home. I value anonymity in my private life as my performances are very much for the public.

"And besides, I am a maestro and worth the expense of meeting my demands. I will bring your Boston Symphony more money in my two month contract than they would make in an entire season without me. I will have presidents, film stars, musicians and royalty coming to this town to see me play," Xio smiled arrogantly. He did not believe in false pride, nor did he deny his ability. He was as good as he boasted, maybe better. "You, of course, will see me play tomorrow night. I insist. You will be my honored guest at my performance.

"But enough of tomorrow night for now, come, bello, the woods are not safe for tasty little boys to wander off into," the vampire continued, motioning for Kel to enter his house. The main doors whispered open with the lightest of touches, the vampire not having locked the door before he left as he was more terrifying than any burglar or would-be stalker could ever be.

Xio turned to his companion and smiled. "I have day staff who insist on cooking me meals even though I tend to eat out more than I eat in. I believe that I have something in the kitchen to appeal to your stomach. Perhaps a nice big steak with the trimmings or lobster. Do you like wine? I have a bottle of heavy red, Italian of course; itís very good for the blood," the vampire offered as he motioned for Kel to follow him, already planning the food and how best to explain his own Ďspecialí wine, made out of a little Chianti and a lot of blood.

"Come, mi amore, first I make you comfortable upstairs in my sitting room, and then I get you your food and our drinks so that we can get to know one another a little better while you eat, yes?"

Slightly overwhelmed, Kel finally nodded and followed as the trick drew him inside the house and upstairs. "What should I call you, stud?" he asked, moving a little closer so that their hips brushed with every step they took. He wasnít sure what to make of all that talk of performances and tickets and the following night; it sounded like what guys said when they wanted into his pants, but heíd seemed so sincere. Kel wasnít going to hold his breath though. Heíd be willing to bet that heíd be out on his ass come morning, looking for a bus back to the city.

"I am Xiomar Damiano Rafaele di Caprisio, concerto violinist extraordinaire," Xio replied with a flourish, bringing Kelís hand up to his lips for a kiss, Xioís tongue darting out to lap at the soft skin, feeling the quickening of the mortalís blood. "But to you, I am Xio, yes? And who might you be, caro? I cannot keep calling you my young friend. I want to be able to whisper your name as I slide inside you or when you wrap those pretty lips around my cock and suck me."

Kel was more than a little surprised to feel his body responding to that sinfully smooth voice and the tongue on his wrist. Looked like tonight might actually be fun for him too for a change. "Kel," he said simply, watching the guy bite gently at his pulse point.

"Kel," Xio purred, rolling the name around his mouth, tasting it. "It is as interesting and unique as you are." Sucking one of the young manís fingers into his mouth, Xio began to perform on it, his dark eyes never leaving Kelís. He could feel the fluttering increase of blood, smell the arousal build and watch the pleasure fill those wary, violet eyes. "Be a good boy and wait here while I get your meal. Back in moments," the vampire promised as he strode out of the room quickly, biting back the sigh that threatened as he drew away from the mortal.

In short moments he was back with a cart that had Kelís food and two bottles of wine on it. Pouring the mortal a glass from the regular bottle, he set the cart in front of Kel, snagging his own bottle of wine and glass off its surface and then moving to the chair opposite the one Kel was sitting in.

"Eat, bello, you will need the energy," Xio admonished softly, reaching over to lift the dome off the cart before pouring himself a glass of blood mixed with wine and settling back to watch.

Kelís gaze darted from the food to the weird guy, trying to decide if this was safe. The stuff could be drugged, but he was already a sure thing, and he didnít think Xio was a psycho. Besides, he was hungry. He reached hesitantly for a piece of cheese, still not sure that this wasnít some kind of trick and that heíd actually be allowed to eat it, but the older man remained motionless. He took a bite and nearly groaned with pleasure at the sharp taste, already reaching for more, wanting to taste all the different kinds.

He eyed the covered plate covetously, wondering if the steak heíd heard Xio order was under there, but he was enjoying the appetizers too much to check it out yet. "Thanks," he managed between mouthfuls, the manners his motheríd drilled into him as a young child reappearing.

Xioís eyes darkened with sadness as he took in the hesitancy and the fear in the younger man. He could smell the distrust and the underlying sorrow that made Kelís scent sharper. "You are most welcome picino," he replied, with a slight smile.

Seeking to fill the conversational void, Xio began to talk. "Once upon a time beautiful creatures like you were ensconced in fine houses and had servants of their own and were kept for their lovers. You were meant for more than a street corner; you would have been a courtesan that royalty would have fought for had you been born in an earlier age. This is how I plan on treating you tonightólike something fine and lovely and infinitely precious. Will you let me do that? Treat you as I would one of my lovers and not as a thing to be used and discarded?" Xio asked quietly.

"Sure," Kel replied coolly, not about to let his guard down no matter what the guy said. Sure, it sounded nice and flowery, like something in those romance novels his friend Kitten liked to read, but he didnít buy it for a second. Still, it sounded like heíd be getting a bit more than being shoved face first into a wall while some guy rutted in him, so heíd play along.

"You do not believe me," Xio purred. "It is to be expected, I suppose. Ah well, it simply means that I must prove to you what I say. I am nothing, if not determined," the vampire continued, a mysterious smile playing across his lips.

"Tell me, have you seen the movie calledówhat is its name? Ah yes, Pretty Woman," Xio asked suddenly, changing topics.

"No. I think I was about three when it came out, and itís not exactly my kind of movie, yíknow?" Kel shrugged as he helped himself to more of the food, confident at least that this much was for real. "Could I get some water or something?" he asked, not wanting to drink wine when he wasnít sure what was going to happen.

"Ah, well I was going to ask what I wish that the man in that movie had. I want you to be my companion for the next week. How much would this cost me? Ten thousand? More?" Xio asked as he stood and walked over to a bar fridge he kept in the sitting room which he used to keep his blood wine most times, and pulled out a bottle of sparkling water from its depths, glad that blood and wine werenít the only things he drank.

Bringing it back over, Xio cracked the lid and poured some of the mineral water into a glass. Taking a sip of it, he bent and pressed his lips to the whoreís, letting the water trickle inside before moving back. "But you do not touch your wine; it is a very good vintage. Much older than you are, in fact, by about one hundred years."

Kel only stared at him, not moving, not really having heard anything after the comment about wanting him for a week. And had he really offered... "T-ten thousand?" He couldnít have forced another word out to save his life.

"This is not enough? Fifteen then?" Xio asked, misunderstanding the young man. "You understand that I donít have the money on me, that I would need to go to a bank to get it. However, I can give you a portion of this amount every day. Two thousand a day?"

"Whoa, stop!" Kel held a hand up as if to forcibly prevent him from saying anything else and rose from his chair to back up a step, shaking his head slightly. "No offense but... Why? You sure as hell donít need to buy it, and for that kind of money, you could get someone a lot more high class than me."

"This nameless, faceless someone who is more high class sounds dull, boring and lifeless. You, however, intrigue me. Beguile me even. You have the face of an angel, the mouth of a sailor, the body that would tempt even a holy man and... you inspire me. I am an artist, and as such require inspiration. You shall be my muse," Xio murmured. "Now sit and eat, young one, lest you faint where you stand."

Eyeing him oddly, Kel did finally sit down, convinced that whatever was going on, he didnít have anything physical to fear from Xio. "What exactly would you expect from me for that much money?" He reached for the food and dug in.

Thirsty, he took a mouthful of the water, making a face at the mineral flavor of it, but if that was what Xio wanted him to drink, he would. He didnít know what was wrong with tap water though.

"I expect you to be you," Xiomar replied, not quite understanding the question. "I am aware that I am paying for your company and your services in the bedroom, but I hope that itís not a chore for you. Am I so ugly as that?" the vampire teased, quite aware of his charms and the fact that he was more fallen angel than old hag.

"I want a companion. Someone who speaks his own mind, someone who has opinions that may or may not coincide with my own. I am not paying you to be slavish, the exact opposite. I am paying you to be free," Xio tried to explain.

"Tomorrow I will take you home so that you may inform your friends and your, ahh, handler," Xio said questioningly, "if need be, and then I will take you shopping for a wardrobe. To move in my world you will need a slightly different quality of clothing, but you can choose whatever you like, whatever appeals. But is fifteen enough?" Xio asked seriously.

He actually knew what the going rate was; using prostitutes was common enough among his kind as they were cheap to buy and easy to exert influence over. But this one, this one had Xio wanting to help as much as fuck.

Xio had not lied when he claimed this child, Kel, to be his muse. The moment he saw the whore, he had felt the music sing through him like the dark, heady blood wine he favored. It inspired him to dark, seductive thoughts, and new music was already writing itself inside his head, music that would come out in the dark hours of the night. This one he would keep for a week to see if this was truly the case. If it was, Xiomar would offer him a new lifeóthat of companion, muse and consort to an immortal vampire.

"Jeez, do you offer this to everyone you pick up off the streets?" Kel marveled, pouring himself a glass of wine and sipping at it. It reminded him a little of the wine his mom had let him sip at Christmas when heíd been little. "And I donít have a pimp," he added a bit snappishly. It was a source of pride that he and his few friends fended for themselves, not letting anyone own them. "But yeah, there are some friends I should tell if Iím going to be out of circulation for a few days."

He took another bite of the steak, following it with some of the bread soaked in the juices. "Clothes are extra. You want to dress me up, you pay for it." With that fifteen thousand, heíd be able to get him and his friends a decent place to live, keep them all off the streets for a bit, maybe let the older ones find real jobs without worrying about where the next meal would come from. Kitten especially he wanted to help. She reminded him in some ways of his mother.

"I have not offered this to anyone in... a lifetime or more," Xio murmured as he thought of his last muse, a young Venetian from centuries past who had been his last great love. A youth he had turned and had lost when they had drifted apart over time.

"And he became one of my great loves, but he left me alone eventually. I have been very lonely of late and have not felt the muse truly come to me since he left me. Until, that is, you prowled towards me, all passion and fire and sensuality. My muse returned when you did," Xio admitted quietly.

"The clothes will be paid by me, as well as any other accoutrements you may require. During the day your time is your own as I will be busy preparing for the nightís concert and will be unavailable, but the nights shall be mine."

"All right then," Kel nodded sharply, wondering about that comment about it having been a lifetime but putting it down to the Italianís dramatic streak. "Fifteen thousand, over and above the thou for tonight, plus clothes, and Iím all yours for a week. Iíll need that first thousand in the morning though." Heíd give it to the others and make sure they all moved into someplace they could rent cheaply so they would be okay while he was away.

"I will arrange for you to receive your daily allowance plus the extra five hundred that I have not yet given you for tonight. So, amato, have you eaten your fill?"

Kel eyed the remaining food with all the attention of one whoíd too often gone hungry in the past, but he knew if he ate much more heíd make himself sick. Not to mention that he wouldnít be able to give Xio his moneyís worth.

Pushing back from the table, he got to his feet and prowled toward the older man, eyes fixed on him. "Yeah, Iím all done." He stopped just in front of Xio, thumbs hooked into his belt loops, one hip thrust out. "Got any ideas what we should do next?"

Not answering the young man, Xio pulled Kel into his lap and nuzzled at the side of his neck, breathing in the scent of hot blood and life. Running his tongue back and forth along the pulse point, Xio let his teeth graze across the soft skin, feeling it surge towards the surface as he did so.

"I think," he spoke after long moments of play, "that you should take a hot shower; you are still chilled, and it will relax you. Then we can play."

Kel eyed him oddly. "Most guys donít give a damn if Iím relaxed or not. Youíre kinda weird, you know that? But in a good way, I think." He actually was relaxing, almost at ease in this manís presence, or as much so as he could be around another person outside of his Ďfamilyí.

Smiling slightly, he said, "Are you going to tell me that a place like this doesnít have a Jacuzzi? That would let me warm up and let us play at the same time." He nibbled on Xioís neck, surprised by the intensity of the shudder of arousal that drew from the older man.

"Jacuzzi, pah, I have one but detest it. In my home in Tuscany I have a roman bath as is only proper! Steam and heat and hot water all confined in one room. This is how bathing should be," Xio claimed in disgust. "However, I will see if the Jacuzzi is better with two than it was with one. Itís off the bedroom, which is through those doors. Would you like to go first or shall I?"

"After you. After all, you know where youíre going." And no matter how pleasant he seemed, he was still a stranger, and Kel would rather not have him behind his back if he could avoid it. "This is going to be so good. I was in a Jacuzzi once," he remembered, "and I loved it. It felt so cool, all the bubbles and stuff." He shrugged, suddenly remembering that he was supposed to be a blase teenager.

"Then you may have as many baths as you wish during your time here," Xio replied, a smile in his voice, as he led his way into an elegantly appointed changing room. "The bathroom is through those doors. This is where you may change, and the Jacuzzi is on the deck under the awning. Now to start the tub and it should be warm and bubbling by the time we get out of our shower. Come, caro, strip off." And with that invitation, Xio began to shed his fine clothing unselfconsciously, leaving it in a heap on the floor as he moved around the room.

Kel couldnít help watching; the other man was beautiful, pale and chiseled as one of the marble sculptures heíd seen in the museum. His eyes widened at the disregard for the clearly expensive clothing, and he laid his own garments aside more carefully. He still needed to get another dayís wear out of them. "Why do you want to take a shower before a bath? That seems kind of pointless to me."

"Because, bello, the shower is for washing, and the tub is for soaking and playing," Xio replied with a smile. "Besides, we must allow it time to warm up and bubble, yes? You would not want to step into a cold Jacuzzi, especially when the outside air is so brisk."

Ducking outside to lift the cover and turn on the pump and the heat, Xio came back in and pulled Kel after him. "Now it will be nice and warm when we are done, and there will be warm robes when we emerge from the water to wrap ourselves in." Turning on the shower and adjusting the water to body temperature, he pulled Kel into the shower with him.

"Just be thankful I am Italian and not Scandinavian. I could want to roll around in the snow and beat myself with twigs to get the blood flowing," he teased the younger man. "And then want to do the same to you."

"That would definitely cost you extra," Kel laughed, slowly relaxing under the massage of the hot water. "Oh, that feels good," he almost purred, letting his head fall forward so it pounded onto his neck. "Mmmmm." Remembering what he was there for, he straightened up, trying to regain his distance as he smiled at Xio. He reached for the body scrubber and poured some of the almond scented body wash into it, then started to wash the older man.

"Bellisimo," Xiomar moaned, relaxing under the prostituteís ministrations. "You have such talented hands, caro, and the touch of an artist. Did you ever have dreams of being such a thing? I know you do what you must to survive, there is no shame in this at all, but what are your dreams when you allow yourself the luxury?" Xio murmured, adding a little suggestion to his words in order to get the young man to open up to him.

Kel frowned at the personal question but, oddly, found himself replying. "If I could do whatever I wanted and not have to worry about money, Iíd like to write. Poetry." He looked embarrassed. Heíd never even told his friends, so why was he telling this trick? Looking confused, he backed away slightly.

"Are you good?" Xio purred as he picked up a second sponge and began to reciprocate. "What I mean to say is do you have talent, or do you just scribble and dream of being something you cannot? I do not ask this to be cruel; I ask for a specific reason."

"Dunno. No oneís ever read it but me. I think itís okay, but what do I know?" Kel shrugged, trying to hide how uncomfortable he was discussing this.

"You will bring me something to read of yours when you go to gather your things in the morning," Xio commanded with his usual flair. "If you have the talent, I may be able to arrange for a patron for you, and you will no longer have to sell yourself on the street, that is if you wish it. But for now..." Xioís eyes darkened to molten gold.

"For now I want you to take me in your mouth, caro; let me feel your other talents."

Kel wondered, not for the first time, if this guy was nuts. He took flamboyancy to new levels, reminding Kel of that Liberace guy heíd seen one time on a special about old time musicians, not to mention that he seemed to think he had the right to know everything personal about Kel. Heíd just have to keep Xioís attention focused on the physical. And his last order made that easy.

Kel slid to his knees under the pounding water, violet eyes never leaving Xioís as his tongue flicked out over his straining cock, tasting him. He mouthed the length from base to tip, then suckled on the head, his tongue gliding under the foreskin and rubbing over Xio.

"Mmmm, very nice. You have great talent, I see," Xio purred, his fingers carding through the wet ebony hair of the young man. "If your poems are anything like this talent, I will support your craft myself," he promised impulsively. Besides if he were the boyís patron, he could have Kel live with him or perhaps in the guesthouse on the grounds. He could plead his lifestyle for sleeping during the day only so long before the young one became suspicious.

After all, blood in the fridge might be more than a little odd for a teenaged American street hustler. Xio would have to consider how to handle this situation carefullyósomething that would have to wait until his cock wasnít buried down Kelís throat.

"Enough, bello, it is time for the hot tub, yes? Or perhaps the bed first as I am not sure how well latex does in chlorinated water."

"Bed," Kel purred, moist, swollen lips still brushing the tip of Xioís cock as he spoke. He really wanted Xio to fuck him in the hot tub, but he wasnít sure about the effects of chlorine on latex either, so they would find other alternatives once they got there. First though... "I want you to fuck me."

"That, I think, can be arranged," the vampire replied, his eyes growing dark with hunger. Turning off the water, Xio picked up the younger man and carried him into the bedroom, his slender frame belying his strength. Tossing Kel to the bed, Xio crawled over top of him, trapping the mortal with his body.

"I should perhaps warn you ahead of time that I like to bite, and I have even been known to draw blood on occasion. Does this offend?" he purred, looking down at the younger man even as he began to rub his hard erection against Kelís as an unspoken goad for permission.

Eyes widening even as he gasped with pleasure, Kel stared up at him in disbelief. "Are you nuts? Blood? Youíre going to get yourself killed doing that." Until that moment Kel had actually been toying with the idea of riding Xio in the Jacuzzi, just making sure to have him pull out before coming, but now he was scared to, frightened that Xioís preferences had already infected him.

"No way youíre biting me." No matter how hot it sounded, Kel wasnít going to take the chance of catching anything. "If thatís your thing, you can have your money back and Iím out of here."

"What if I can assure you that I am without disease?" Xio asked even as he exerted just a little pressure on the younger manís mind. Not enough to rob Kel of his will but enough that Kel would soon believe that unprotected sex and bloodplay was perfectly safe, at least with Xioówhich it was. Vampires, after all, did not catch diseases.

"And how many people have you bitten since you last tested clean?" Kel demanded warily. "No offense, Xio, I think youíre really hot, but dying young and leaving a good-looking corpse has never been my plan. I want to outlive all the bastards, and Iím not going to do that by playing dangerous games." No matter how much I might want to. Kel fought against swaying toward the older man, even his healthy fear not proof against the attraction he felt every time he looked at him.

"The last person I was a little on the rough side with was my lover of many years who died some time ago. Since then I have not had time or inclination to play like that. You are the first I have wanted to play with in a very long time, caro. I am as surprised by this as you are, believe me, but..." Xio bent and nuzzled against Kelís neck, his mind exerting subtle influence over the mortalís.

"Do you not want to play with me, bello? I can assure you that you will definitely outlive any bastards, as you call them. I carry none of those pesky diseases." What amazed the vampire the most was that he was actually considering turning the young manóeventually. If Kel was willing.

His last lover had not been, so Xio was forced to watch her grow old and die, and by the time she had wanted eternal life, Xio would not condemn her to an eternity as a geriatric. So he had mesmerized the ancient woman and had played the good Ďsoní to the end, watching the woman heíd once loved fade away to dust. He had been there until the end and had made sure her last moments were peaceful and full of love of the filial kind even if he could no longer muster the passion for her that he had once done.

Frowning, Kel slowly relaxed into Xioís embrace. "I still think youíre nuts, but okay," he said, distantly surprised by his own words but not caring at that moment, only wanting to feel the older man inside him. "Now fuck me, please," he begged prettily, lowering his head so he could look up through his lashes.

"Oh, I think I can do that," Xio purred as he stroked his fingers back and forth across Kelís lips. "Suck, caro," the vampire smiled and then groaned as the young man did as he asked, fellating his fingers with considerable skill. "Oh, but you are very good at that, little one. I must make use of this mouth often over the next while, yes?"

Removing the spit-slicked fingers from Kelís mouth, Xio slid down and spread the raven-haired youthís legs, unerringly finding his puckered opening and gently forcing the fingers inside the tight muscle. His other hand scrabbled for the lubricant to slick his cock up so that he could slide inside. Finding it, he handed the bottle to Kel. "Prepare me to take you," he commanded wickedly.

Kel took it, his free hand stroking Xioís erection hungrily. "Where are the rubbers?" he panted, looking around. He needed to get one on Xio before he slicked him up, and that had to be soon. He felt like heíd die if he didnít get that cock inside him soon. His own lust surprised him, but he was enjoying it, enjoying the almost unknown joy of mutual pleasure.

Hating the charade but knowing he had to live with it, Xio reached into a drawer and pulled out condoms and lube. "Now, bello donnaccio, put it on me and slick me up so I can slam into your pretty body and make you scream!"

Kel curled his hand around Xio, pumping him, then smoothed the latex down over him, nearly moaning as he imagined the thick shaft inside his body. He fumbled and almost dropped the lube onto the bed before he managed to squeeze some out, stroking it onto the latex-sheathed cock that he wanted so badly. Once Xio was coated, he spread and drew back his legs, offering himself to the older man. "Fuck me, please, Xio."

"You beg so prettily, how can I say no?" Xio purred as he positioned himself and plunged inside the young whore without any preparation. The look of pleasure and pain that crossed Kelís face had Xio fighting with his inner bloodlust, trying to keep from giving in to the need that poured into him. "Ahh, caro so tight and hot, you sound so delicious the way you gasp and whine while trying to get used to me. I think I could come to worship you," Xio purred, stroking his cheek against the young whoreís.

Kel could only whimper, reveling in the burning deep inside as his body stretched to accommodate the Italian. He arched upward, hungrily seeking more, his mouth latching onto Xioís in a deep kiss, something that he never did but that he wanted more than his next breath. "Fuck me," he begged, writhing wantonly. "Hard, please, Xio!"

"Your wish is my command, caro mio," the vampire purred as he began to drive in and out of the young manís body. Forcing himself up and away from the lush teen beneath him in order to keep from sinking his fangs into Kelís neck, Xioís hands bit bruisingly into his loverís hips as he pounded into Kel as hard and fast as he could.

Eyes burning molten gold, Xiomar growled softly. "Touch yourself for me, donnaccio," he murmured, again calling Kel a slut but meaning it complimentarily, "stroke that pretty cock so that I can watch while I fuck you."

Twisting and whining, Kel eagerly obeyed, gasping his pleasure as his hand moved on his cock, trying to match Xioís rhythm, then speeding up as his body demanded more. "Harder, fuck me harder," he begged, arching upward sluttishly, legs spreading even wider.

Snarling, the bloodlust rising uncontrollably, Xio did as he was asked and began to pile drive in and out of the teenís body even as his control finally snapped. He might be old, but the bloodlust was so intimately entwined with sex that even he could not resist the call for long.

Slamming into the young man over and over again, Xio bent and bit into Kelís neck, sucking strongly as he continued to violently pleasure him.

"Oh fuck yeah!" Kel moaned, arms and legs wrapped tightly around the older man as he rode the thick cock pounding into him. But it still wasnít enough, and he again pulled his legs back, hands grasping the backs of his knees to spread himself open, now helpless beneath Xio, only able to take everything he gave him. His own cock was harder than he ever remembered, tight against his belly, and he was painting them both with his precome on every stroke that compressed it between them.

Snarling as he forced himself to remove his fangs and lick the bite closed, Xio began to whisper hot, dirty words in Italian into the young manís ear, telling him how he wanted to debauch, violate, corrupt, and worship the young man. He forced a hand between their pistoning bodies and wrapped it around Kelís cock, stroking it in time with his thrusts, wanting to see the young man come with him buried balls deep inside the slut, his slut!

Kel had no idea what Xio was saying, although he did get the gist of it from the tone and what he was doing. "Oh God, yes, Xio, please," he panted, nearly screaming as Xio fucked him and jerked him at the same time. Releasing his knees, his fingers clawed at the older manís back, and he wailed his pleasure as he came, feeling claimed by the man possessing him so pleasurably.

The first internal tremors of Kelís body let Xio know that Kel was about to find his release, and so the vampire began to thrust harder, faster, slamming into the teen over and over and over until his hips were almost a blur of speed. With one final roar of pleasure the violinist came with an intensity bordering on the violent and collapsed in a sweaty heap on top of Kel.

"Bello caro mio," he sighed at last, petting the sweat-dampened hair out of Kelís eyes. "You and I, we are going to set the world on fire with our passion. I guarantee it!"

"I think we just did," Kel groaned, violet eyes opening to peer up at the older man. "That was amazing, and Iím really looking forward to finding out how often we can repeat it in the next week while Iím here," he purred lasciviously. And much to his surprise, he wasnít exaggerating to make a trick feel good about himself; he really had enjoyed himself with Xio.

"Mmmm, Iím glad that Iíve managed to please you as well as myself. That is how loving should be, not just one partnerís gratification while the other is left to want. So, shall we rest a little or go enjoy that hot tub and then sleep a while?"

"The hot tub!" Kel replied instantly and eagerly, then hesitated, remembering Xioís expressed disdain for it earlier. "That is, if you donít mind?" He could always make use of it when Xio didnít need his company after all.

"If you want to cook us like lobsters, who am I to complain?" Xio laughed, getting out of bed and lifting Kel up like he was a featherweight. Carrying him through to the hot tub, he slowly lowered the human into the heated tub a bit at a time to allow Kel to adjust to the hot water. Slipping in next to him, Xio pulled the rent boy into his arms and sighed luxuriously. "I may have to revise my opinion of this contraption. With you in it next to me, itís quite acceptable."

Kel laughed. "Glad I can make hot water more Ďacceptableí," he snickered, leaning back against Xioís chest as the bubbling liquid relaxed him. "Doní let me drown," he mumbled sleepily, surprised to realize that he was comfortable enough with Xiomar to let himself fall asleep in his arms in the tub.

"Donít worry, caro," Xiomar murmured, nuzzling against Kelís neck softly as he held the sleeping boy in his arms. "I plan on keeping you safe and well for a very, very long time. You are mine now, Kel, and I will not be letting you go."

Kel woke slowly a few hours later, at first disoriented by his surroundings, then reminded as he felt the possessive arm over his waist. Smiling, the teenager rolled over to face Xio, seeing that the older man was watching him.

"I hope I wasnít drooling," Kel laughed.

"Ahh, but you looked so cute I didnít have the heart to wake you," he teased the young mortal. "So are you feeling rested and recuperated?"

"Why do I think you have ulterior motives for that question?" Kel smiled and stretched sensually, violet eyes never leaving Xioís.

"You have the appetite of a sex fiend," Xio teased. "Are you hungry? We can order you more food; you are far too skinny, and Iím determined to put some meat on your bones. After you have eaten, we can then perhaps explore the house, providing we carry the lube and condoms around with us?"

"A perfect plan. I could eat. And fuck. And eat some more. Well, I think you get the idea." Kel grinned wickedly.

"Oh, I think I get it quite emphatically. So tell me what you like to eat? Are you a typical teenager who adores junk food, or will you want to explore new avenues while with me?" Xio asked, chuckling. "And do you trust me?"

"Now thatís one hell of a question. And I eat anything thatís offered." Kelís life hadnít given him much opportunity to be picky, and he was perfectly willing to try anything that was presented to him as food.

"In that case you shall have what I know bestóItalian food. Now to order," Xio grinned, reaching over to pick up the phone and dial the number of an Italian restaurant he owned and therefore knew would deliver.

"Bunoasera, líamministratore por favor, grazi," he murmured into the phone and then waited a moment. "Ah, Vittorio, bunoasera! Che Xio, como sta?" After chatting for a few moments, Xio quickly placed his order, asked it be delivered to the house and then hung up. "Now, itís only a light meal I ordered because I donít want you too full to do anything," he teased.

"And here I thought youíd be helping me work it off," Kel retorted, finally sitting up and pushing his hair back out of his eyes. "Now, since we had a bath before crawling in here, whatever can we do to fill the time until the food gets here?"

"Explore, unless you want to get sweaty and smelly again before the food comes," Xio laughed, pulling Kel to his feet.

"And whatís wrong with sweaty?"

"A man cannot live on sex alone, caro mio," Xio grinned. "Havenít you ever heard of talking, or even foreplay? Think of how we can heighten our pleasure by denying it for the time being. Besides I want to get to know you."

Kel stared at him, not quite sure how to react to a john who wanted to make like this was a date. "Uh, okay. How?"

"How about we start with you telling me a bit about you, and Iíll tell you a bit about me, and then we go from there," Xio suggested, leading Kel out of the bedroom and towards a comfortable sitting room only after grabbing two robes from his closet and handing one to the mortal.

"Donít you think you should have asked me all this before hiring me to spend the week if you were going to?" Kel eyed the older man ironically. "And thereís not much more to tell. I already told you I hang with a group of friends. You know what I do. Thatís about all there is."

"You have a past donít you? Mother and father, siblings maybe? And why would I ask this before? I wanted to get to know you, caro; that takes time," Xio pointed out. "However, if there are painful events, I will understand you not wanting to talk about them. And you can ask me whatever you want, too. Just to be fair."

"My friends are my family." Kel was withdrawing, very uncomfortable with the way things were going. He liked Xio, and they had a lot of fun together, but why did he have to ask questions? "Who painted this?" he asked, choosing a painting at random from those on the walls.

"Ahh, that would be Carravagio, the painting is called Amor Victorious. There is something to be said about the personification of the victory of love over all, donít you think?" Xio replied gently, pulling Kel closer. "Forgive me for prying. I only want to know everything there is about you and share everything that I am with you. You... affect me, Kel, more strongly than I had ever suspected you would be able to."

Kel managed a brief smile. "I like you too, Xio, but... no questions, okay? I canít be who I have to if I donít keep parts of my life separate," he tried to explain.

"And what if you donít have to be that person anymore, caro?" Xio asked quietly.

"Iím not even going to consider that on an hourís acquaintance," Kel replied. "I have people depending on me, and Iím not going to let them down Ďcause youíre a good fuck," he said crudely, trying to make a point.

"Your family would be welcome here as well, caro; I wouldnít dream of separating you from them. I have waited almost half of my lifetime for you, and I have been very lonely while I waited. How could I not want you to be happy, to have your family with you? And we are more than just a good fuck together. Or do you act this unjaded and carefree with all your customers?" Xio shot back.

Kel hadnít heard anything after Xio mentioned bringing his family as well. He just stood there, staring at the musician, jaw slack and eyes wide.

"What, you find it hard to believe that I would do this? I am Italian, Kel," at least in this life, he thought to himself with an inward grin. "We come from big families and keep them close to us. I donít have a family of my own, so why wouldnít I want to adopt yours?"

"I... you... We... Shit!" Kel sat down abruptly. "I donít know what to make of you." He shook his head. "Are you serious?"

"Do I look like I am joking, caro?" Xio replied kindly "I would not have offered if I were not serious. There will, of course, have to be a few basic rules, and... there are things I need to tell you about myself, but yes, I was serious."

"Holy fuck. I, uh, I need to think about this. I mean really, you could be some psycho serial killer," Kel said somewhat wildly. "And I canít make that kind of decision on my own." He raked his hands through his hair. "Look, can we just have fun for now, please; I really canít think about this right now."

Xio didnít point out that theyíd already had a similar conversation when he had Ďhiredí the younger man for the week. He didnít point out that if he wanted to, he could make Kel disappear in a heartbeat and no one would worry, except maybe the mortalís Ďfamilyí, nor did he point out that in many ways he was much worse than a pyscho serial killer since he needed blood to keep him alive as Kel didnít know about that yet.

What Xio did do was bite down on his lower lip hard enough to draw blood just to keep from laughing aloud at how rattled heíd managed to make the cool, jaded rent boy he was rapidly falling for.

"Oh, caro, you and I shall have such times together. I have not felt this light in more years than I can count. Donít worry, my sweet little boy, we shall have a great deal of fun before I take you home," he promised, striding over to Kel and picking him up as if he were a featherweight, pinning the whore between himself and the wall as he nibbled on his neck. "Oh yes, we shall have fun indeed!"

"Cool." Kel grinned at him. "Does that mean youíre going to fuck me now?"

"Do you think you would maybe wish to eat before we continue? Perhaps build up your strength a little more, because I assure you, you will need it," Xio smirked, nibbling his way further down Kelís neck and along his collarbone, teeth scraping lightly across pale flesh and bringing blood to the surface.

"Sure. Do you think the stuff you ordered is here yet?" Kel was still pretty full from the steak dinner the night before, but heíd learned to eat when he could. He hadnít heard the doorbell, but as big as this place was, that didnít surprise him. Then again, when Xio said heíd ordered, he might have meant that he called the kitchen. Kel didnít know, didnít have experience with this sort of lifestyle, and he hadnít understood a thing Xio had said during the phone conversation as it had been conducted entirely in Italian.

"I instructed them to leave it inside the foyer; shall we check and see if it has arrived, caro?" Xio grinned, shifting Kel around slightly so that he was carrying the younger man in his arms through the house and to the foyer. "Ah foodís here. Time for you to eat, and regain your strength so that we can exhaust you again."

"I really like the way you think." Kel grinned even as he clung tightly to Xioís shoulders, uneasy at being carried around. "Are you sure youíre not going to drop me?"

"Trust me; Iím stronger than I appear to be. Now dip," Xio grinned as he did exactly that in order to have Kel low enough to pick up the insulated bag. "Nice snag. To the kitchens, mi amore?"

"You donít want to eat in bed?" Kel purred, nuzzling Xioís throat and nibbling on his ear.

"If that is your wish, caro then by all means, letís eat in bed. I will feed you with my fingers and have you lick them off, cleaning them like the little cat you are," the vampire grinned, licking his lips in anticipation.

Cat? Kel eyed him oddly. "Iím not licking up any cream," he warned.

"It will be my pleasure to do that, I promise you," Xio grinned. "And you will be the one to provide the cream."

"You really like to live dangerously, donít you?" Kel shook his head. "I donít understand you. But Iím not going to try. Iím just going to enjoy it."

"Life is not life without a little danger. It gets the blood pumping," Xio grinned, dumping Kel on the bed and crawling onto it after him. "So, shall we see what treasures Iíve ordered for you?"

"Great idea. It smells good." Kel started to crawl toward the food, intent on finding out what they had.

Snagging Kel by an ankle, Xio wagged his finger in a negative, smirking as he did so. "I said I would feed you, caro. Now back against the headboard and close your eyes. You will tell me what I feed you by taste alone."

After hesitating for a moment, Kel did as he was bidden, deciding that he could trust Xio that much. He settled himself comfortable, gave Xio a final wary glance out of violet eyes, and closed them, waiting to find out what he would be fed, pretty sure that it wasnít going to be anything as ordinary as bacon and eggs.

Opening the first container, Xio removed a piece of bruschetta, brushing it against Kelís lips and then licking the flavored oil off of them before pushing it back against the young manís lips for him to eat.

Kel slowly ate the bread, his fingers flexing against the bedding, the taste seeming stronger without the distraction of sight.

"Dio," Xiomar gasped, watching Kelís lips move and his tongue come out to swipe across them. He felt his groin tighten and pull. "You are so beautiful, so delectable. I would eat you alive if I could."

Kel thrust his hips forward. "Feel free," he invited huskily.

"Do not offer what you donít understand," Xio warned, his voice gone husky and his fangs elongating. Biting back his groan of arousal, Xio reached with shaky hands into another container, this time pulling out a marinated olive and rubbing it over Kelís lips, biting down hard when that pretty pink tongue darted out and lapped at those gorgeous lips. Drops of blood appeared on his own lips, and he lapped it up, his whole body quivering with arousal and need.

Kel licked his lips again, his face screwing up. "Ick! Olive!"

"Heathen," Xio chuckled, popping it into his own mouth, chewing and swallowing before he sealed his lips over Kelís and swept his tongue round the mortalís mouth. "Olives were the gifts of the gods, something to be savored and treasured. Priceless for what they could provide and the wealth they could bring in. But Iíll be more than willing to convince you."

"Never. Theyíre nasty, salty, briny, horrid-tasting things. If thatís breakfast, Iíll skip it."

"Children," Xio sniffed, putting the marinated olives away and reaching for another container. "But I will humor you today." Dipping his fingers into a new container, this time Xio pulled out a piece of penne, dripping with marinara sauce, and placed it on the mortalís tongue.

Tasting the new flavor, Kel made a sound of pleasure and caught hold of Xioís fingers after eating the pasta, sucking on them hungrily.

"Diavolo," Xio gasped, his fingers being licked clean and his cock hardening as if his fingers and cock were connected in pleasure. "Keep that up and you wonít get through breakfast, caro."

"Itíll all be just as good later," Kel purred, twisting until his thigh rubbed against Xio.

"A little cat in heat, arenít you, caro mio," Xiomar chuckled as he set aside the containers and moved to cover Kelís body, leaving the blindfold in place. "Very well, gato, I will wait to feed you until after I have exhausted you again."

"Mmm, fun." Kel thrust his hips upward demandingly, enjoying this rare opportunity to seek his own pleasure. "More!"

"Much, much more, I promise," Xio murmured as he began to lick way down Kelís chest, his teeth scraping lightly over skin and nipples as he headed for Kelís cock.

Whimpering with arousal, Kel responded to every touch, every nip and caress, and he moaned Xioís name with increasing fervor. "God, what are you doing to me?" he panted, loving it.

"Making it so that you want me and only me," Xio replied, his teeth scraping hard enough to break skin along Kelís hip and then lapping up the crimson droplets quickly before ghosting his lips over Kelís dark curls and nuzzling the base of Kelís balls. "Iím going to make it so you canít live without me," he continued to murmur seductively, switching to Italian so as not to scare the young man any further.

"Oh fuck," Kel groaned, hips thrusting uncontrollably as Xio pleasured him. He thought wildly that he ought to be the one paying the older man for this, and he laughed shakily. "Incredible," he panted, wanting to make sure Xio didnít think he was laughing at him.

"Ah, caro, you havenít seen anything yet, that I promise," Xio smirked, blowing a stream of breath against the tightening sac before lapping at it playfully. "Iím holding back so as not to terrify you with my amazing prowess," he teased, fingers digging into Kelís ass and raising his hips to a more comfortable position for Xio to suck on.

"Donít hold back on my account," Kel retorted, managing to sound wry around his almost sobbing breaths. "Youíre trying to convince me to stay longer, after all," he said, admitting that he realized what Xio was up to and didnít mind.

"As you wish, gato," Xio replied with a smug purr of his own. "As you wish." And with that the vampire dove in, taking both of the young whoreís balls into his mouth, laving them hungrily, his nails digging rhythmically into Kelís ass as he suckled and laved and ate at the young manís body.

Kel screamed.

Heíd never felt anything like this. The only thing that came close was a threesome heíd had a while back with a really hot pair of guys, but this was all aimed at him. His fingers tangled in the thick dark hair, and he gave himself up to whatever Xio wanted to do.

"Thatís one," Xio smirked as he released Kelís balls. "How many times can I make you scream before you lose your voice, do you think?" the Italian whispered as he moved up to swallow Kel down, deep throating him without worry of breathing as he didnít need to.

Kel whimpered. Xio was going to kill him, he was sure of it. But what a way to go. He spread his legs wider, whining faintly as Xio toyed with him, taking him to the brink only to drag him back time and time again. "Fuck you, let me come!" he finally wailed, thrashing in the disconcertingly strong grip.

"I havenít heard you scream yet," Xio reminded him, coming up to answer before plunging right back down and swallowing the young man whole, fingers prizing Kelís ass apart and one finger plunging into the well lubricated ass to search for and find Kelís prostate.

Kel bit his lip, growling softly. At first he refused to scream again, annoyed by Xioís unshakeable confidence that he could make him, but the finger rubbing the sensitive gland inside him made him forget all about his hurt pride or anything other than the incredible pleasure coursing through his veins. He screamed, fighting to force Xioís fingers deeper, wanting more.

Sucking particularly hard, Xio decided that his little toy had been exceptionally good, screaming as he wanted, and so he worked to let Kel come. He would then make sure to rouse him again. And again. And again. He planned on exhausting the rent boy and binding Kel to him with world-shattering sex. Before this night was over Kel wouldnít want to spend eternity with anyone else but him, even if he did fuck others.

Body convulsing as he came, Kel yelled Xioís name, fingers tightening in the musicianís hair as he shuddered. He groaned blissfully as the tension eased from his body, only to realize that Xio wasnít stopping. He half sat up, trying to push the older man away from his hyper-sensitive flesh.

Growling warningly, Xio grabbed Kelís hands, holding them in an iron grip but taking care not to bruise the delicate mortal flesh, and continued to nurse the young man back to life.

"Oh God, oh fuck, canít, Xio, please," Kel babbled, squirming. "Nothing left!" he panted, unable to believe that his painfully sensitive cock wasnít softening.

Grinning around his mouthful of cock, Xio finally released the mewling prostitute and slid upward to straddle Kelís waist. Doing something he hadnít done in a very, very long time, Xio grabbed on to Kelís cock to hold it steady and slowly sank down, taking it into himself with a grunt of pained pleasure. "My turn to play, caro mio," he whispered hungrily.

Kel could only moan, shuddering under the man fucking himself on his cock. Heíd never expected Xio to want this, but it felt fantastic. He raised one hand to curl his fist around Xioís erection, stroking him in time with the rhythm heíd established.

"Nice, very nice," Xio purred, writhing on the shaft imbedded in his ass. "You give as well as you take it. Stroke harder, I wonít break. Make me come, caro," the vampire ordered quietly.

"Want to see you," Kel said, raising his free hand slowly toward the blindfold. He wanted to see how Xio looked squirming atop him, and unless the other man stopped him, he was going to.

Leaning back, Xio waited patiently for the young man to remove the blindfold and see Xio writhing on his cock. When the blindfold at last came off, Xio moaned hungrily. "So, do you like what you see, caro?"

"Fuck yeah," Kel gasped, wide violet fixing on the flushed, dripping cock enclosed in his fist before rising to take in Xioís pleasure-twisted expression.

"You are very good at this," Xio moaned, "Iím enjoying this, Dio, so much. Harder. Fuck me harder. Make me scream, little gatto, make me bellow!"

Kel suddenly gripped Xioís hips and rolled them over, ending with the Italian on his back and Kel kneeling between his legs. Kel began powering into the other man, already having realized that nothing he could do could hurt Xio. He thrust with all the force in his street-hardened body, groaning harshly at the tight grasp surrounding him.

"Yes," Xio hissed, nails raking down Kelís back, leaving scratches in their wake. "Take me. Take me hard and fast, use me, Kel, as you have been used," the vampire growled, wrapping his legs around Kelís back and thrusting up hard, levering himself into each thrust.

Beyond words by now, Kel simply growled and pounded into Xio, his belly rubbing against Xioís erection with every stroke.

"Yes, yes, take me!" Xio snarled, wanting Kel to let truly let go and release all his pent up rage, heat, hate, lust, and passion into him. "Do me!" he ordered, head thrown back as his hands caught and bent the iron of the bed frame slightly as he held on with all his preternatural might.

Kel continued thrusting into him, hard enough that Kel would be sore the next day, but both men were reveling in the rough sex. Kel lowered his head to take Xioís mouth, wanting to claim him in all ways.

Snarling wordlessly, Xio bit down hard on the lip that thrust itself in between his and, tasting blood, came with a howl of pure pleasure, his entire body gone taut with the need driving through him.

When Xio clamped down around him, Kel wailed, unable to move, and the rippling spasms drove him into another orgasm as well, nearly dry but no less intense. His trembling arms refused to support him another instant, and he collapsed atop Xio, nuzzling into him in utter exhaustion.

Stroking the exhausted man with gentle fingers, Xio placed tiny kisses on the side of his neck and face, crooning to him in Latin as he gentled the exhausted boy. "Sleep, caro, and when you wake up, you will eat, and we will see if we can do this again, yes?" he murmured quietly.

Kel managed a tired chuckle. "Who do you think you are, Superman?" He nestled closer, closed his eyes, and was asleep instantly, completely worn out by the last several hoursí activities.

"Something like that," Xio murmured with a quiet chuckle, "but not nearly as flashy in the wardrobe department I fear. Red, blue and yellow just do nothing for me. Now sleep and let me hold you."

Unaccustomed to sharing his bed with anyone other than his family, Kel woke only a few hours later, surprised at first to feel a possessive arm curved over his waist and a body against his back. But the memories of the previous night and the early morning hours returned, and he smiled, carefully peering over his shoulder at Xio. He was surprisingly comfortable lying here with Xio, and Kel let his eyes close again, drifting back into a light doze, content to remain where he was.

Smiling at the level of trust he had from the young rent boy, Xio ran a light hand along Kelís stomach and chest, and upwards to pet his hair. Kissing the back of Kelís neck, Xio nuzzled his way around to suckle on an ear playfully. "Are you awake yet, or should I let you sleep longer?"

Murmuring sleepily, Kel let his head fall back, giving Xio easier access to his ear and throat. "How am I supposed to sleep with you doing that?" he grumbled laughingly, pushing his ass back against the other man.

"Youíre not," Xio grinned, licking his way along Kelís pulse point, his hands working downwards to Kelís quiescent cock. "I want to be in you," he whispered, his already hard cock nudging between Kelís ass cheeks, begging entrance to the rent boyís sweet hole.

"Mmm." Kel moaned wordlessly and raised his upper leg to drape it over Xioís, opening himself for his lover. Still half asleep, he acquiesced to whatever Xio wanted, knowing they would both enjoy it.

Nipping at Kelís neck, Xio took unnecessary minutes to sheath his erection, looking forward to the day when he didnít have to maintain the illusion of such precautions, and then slipped into Kelís channel. "Ahh, as close to heaven as I will ever be."

Kel snorted. "You already have me, you know; you can give the compliments a rest," he mumbled, back arching to take Xio deeper.

"You deserve compliments every day for the rest of eternity," Xio countered. "And having you doesnít mean I canít flatter and love you. I plan on doing so every day we are together," Xio whispered as he began to move inside the mortal. "You will be the most important, most precious and beloved part of my life. This I promise you."

Kel managed a derisive chuckle, but the constant repetition was starting to break through his practiced indifference, and he found himself wanting to believe Xio really meant what he said. But he didnít dare, at least not yet. Instead he concentrated on the physical sensations, tightening his ass around the welcome invader.

"You are mine, caro," Xio breathed as he thrust harder and deeper. "Mine. No matter who else you share this lovely ass with, no matter how many tricks you take to your bed, you will always be mineóbody, mind and heart," the vampire swore. "And one day I will convince you enough to claim you."

"Pretty words," Kel whispered, not daring to believe. He craned his neck around, mouth seeking Xioís almost desperately.

"For my pretty lover," Xio agreed before allowing his mouth to be claimed even as his hips sped up. It was a promise he intended to keep; he would claim Kel as his, no matter how long it took, he would claim Kel as his for all eternity.

Kel whimpered against Xioís lips, hips rocking back and forth between the possessing cock and stroking hand. His pleasure seemed to be as important to Xio as his own, something that the teen had precious little experience of, and he could feel himself building to a climax no matter how much he wanted this to go on.

"Come for me, baby," Xio murmured against Kelís lips, "give this to me. Come apart at the seams for me; let me feel your pleasure. I want you to come apart for me," he commanded as he sped up the thrusts of his hips.

Crying out sharply, Kel came, shaking with the intense sensation that flowed through him, and he tightened around Xio. "You too," he panted demandingly, wanting to feel him come as well.

"But of course," Xio promised as he thrust harder and harder until, with a muted cry, he came, sending his seed into the condom that sheathed his erection.

Kel sighed his pleasure and pressed back, wanting to keep Xio in him as long as possible. He hugged the arm that lay over him, and he found himself hoping that Xio was for real. He was starting to believe what the musician was telling him, and he knew that he was going to get hurt if this was just another line.

"See, I told you it would be good between us. Very good," Xio murmured smugly. "Now all I have to do is convince you to have an encore performance with me. Perhaps a permanent encore?" he asked, kissing the back of Kelís neck softly. "What will it take to convince you to stay?"

Kel stilled. Finally he whispered, "You... youíre really serious, arenít you?" Reluctantly he pulled away and rolled over to face Xio, letting Xio slip out of him, but he needed to see the other manís face for this. "You really want me to stay with you?" he questioned, violet eyes searching Xioís. "Me and my whole family?"

"I really want you to stay," Xio replied quietly, for once not hiding behind the little bits of drama he threw into his personality for the sake of the mortals he surrounded himself with. This was pure, unadulterated Xiomar, the centuries-old vampire who had at last found the one person he wanted to claim as his mate.

"And I want your family to stay too, as they make you happy, and you want to protect them. Trust me when I say you and they shall have no greater protection than me and mine. I swear this upon the blood in my veins."

"I... I donít know what to say," Kel admitted helplessly, looking lost and his age for a brief moment. "Maybe Iím crazy, but I want to believe you." He bit his lip. "But this is too huge for me to decide for everyone. I have to go back, talk to them, find out if they agree. And if they donít, well, I wonít leave them," he warned, wondering if he was nuts even to be considering this when heíd only known Xio for a few hours.

"Then I shall come to you," Xio said simply. "I have found you, and you are mine. If this is what I must do to keep you, then so be it."

Kel blinked. He stared at Xio, trying to picture him in the empty warehouse Kel and his friends called home, and his mind boggled. He started to laugh, burying his face in Xioís chest as his entire body shook with his spasms of mirth.

"You think I jest?" Xio asked, grinning. "I am most serious, caro mio. Of course I will have to buy the building in which you live and renovate it, but... I will if that is what you wish. However, you and your family need never work again unless you find pleasure in the work. I have more than enough for everyone, and I want to take care of you and your family if they will let me."

Staring at him in bemusement, Kel shook his head slightly. "Youíre way too good to be true. I never believed in fairy godfathers. Especially not really hot ones," he added with a faint smile.

Xio burst into laughter. "Although I have been accused of being a fairy, a fairy godfather I am not, I can assure you," he grinned and then grew sober.

"I am... unusual though, not normal by any stretch of the imagination. I will need to tell you what I am, and you will need to tell your family in turn. Be very sure you wish me in your life, little houri, because having me in it will change yours forever," Xio told Kel solemnly.

Kel snorted. "However unusual you may be, youíd still change my life if I say yes to your proposition. But I think that may be a good thing. Especially for the younger kids. Itís not too late for them to make something of their lives." He eyed Xio. "But thatís not why Iím going to say yes if they agree."

"I take it you want me for my body more than for my money?" Xio teased. "I think I can live with both of those reasons. So long as you love me as well. Can you, little one, can you love me?"

"Jesus, Xio! I just met you a few hours ago! Give a guy a chance, will ya?" Kel was looking nervous again. "Iím thinking about moving in with you. Isnít that enough for the first twelve hours?"

"It is," Xio replied with a gentle smile. "Forgive me, Iím a little impatient. I have spent centuries looking for you; now that Iíve found you, I want to bind you to me as tightly as I can, for eternity if I can arrange it," the vampire admitted honestly.

 

A slight frown furrowed Kelís brow. "Centuries?" he repeated warily.

"Centuries," Xio replied quietly. "As I said, I am not what I seem, caro. I was born in 45 AD, and I died nineteen years later as Rome burned and Nero fiddled. It was because of Nero that I died. My mother was Christian, and I followed her faith. Nero would have spared me had I agreed to remain one of his Ďboysí, but I had already had my virginity taken from me without so much as my consent; I would not give that bastard my youth and beauty as well. So I died.

"But not to go to my God as I expected," Xio continued. "I was turned, made into a being who was neither alive nor dead. I became a vampire," he finished, holding Kel tightly to him in preparation for the young manís reaction.

Kel started trying to draw back, eyes wide and a sickly smile on his lips. "Uh, right. You know, I really should get back to the others now. Have that talk with them?"

"I speak the truth, caro," Xio murmured, letting his the bloodlust overtake him so that his fangs elongated and became visible. "I have searched centuries for you, traveled countless continents to find you, and I will do whatever it takes to convince you that I mean you no harm, I only want to love and keep you."

Sputtering and twisting to try to break free, Kel froze when he got a good look at the fangs, and his eyes widened. "Holy shit!" he exclaimed, buried memories suddenly surging free. He remembered a night with two guys whoíd turned out to be vampires. "Oh my God, what am I, a vampire magnet?" he mumbled, still stunned.

"Vampire magnet?" Xioís eyebrows shot skyward. "Youíve seen others of my kind? When? Where? Who had you? Do I have to kill them?"

Snickering, Kel grinned at him. "You should thank them. If I hadnít remembered them, I would never have believed you, you know. Derek and Nick hired me one night a few months back. I liked them, a lot, but they said that if we saw each other again, Iíd remember what they were, so we couldnít. Besides, I was just fun for them, but theyíre in love. The real deal, you know?"

"Derek? Derek Lindstrom?!? Tall, blond, blue eyed libertine, is that right? That bastard Ďbrotherí of mine is here and had you first? Ooooh, Iím gonna take a pound of his flesh for that!" Xiomar seethed.

"I think I like the jealousy," Kel decided, smirking. "I gather you know Derek and have not met Nick. No way in hell that guyís sharing Derek for more than an hour, not even with someone who looks like him. Youíd have to go through him to get to Derek too."

"Derekís sire is the one who made me as well, so yes, I know the bastard. I havenít met this Nick, so Iím happy to hear that brother of mine has been taken and claimed and is out of my way for good and wonít be able to play with you again. This suits me just fine, I think," Xio growled, nipping at Kelís neck.

"Youíre not going to pee on me or anything weird to mark your territory, are you?" Kel laughed.

"That is absolutely disgusting, caro," Xiomar replied, his nose wrinkling in revulsion. "Do not ever speak of such things again!"

"Good thing I happen to agree with you. That was something a john couldnít pay me enough to do," Kel said, making a face. "But you really need to calm down about Derek and Nick. I liked them, and now that I donít have to forget what they are, I think they might be friends."

"Just so long as they keep their hands off... or Iím allowed to play too. I donít want you playing without me ever again," Xio pouted prettily. "You can play, but I want to be part of it. Okay?"

Laughing, Kel managed to say, "Oh, Angel and Kitten are going to love you! I may not get close again after they hear you say something like that."

"And who are Angel and Kitten, and why wonít you get near me again?" Xio asked, pulling Kel more firmly into his arms. "And does this mean you can live with having a vampire for a lover, for a mate?"

"Cool it with the mate stuff, okay? This is still moving way too fast for me," Kel said almost plaintively. "But yeah, I can live with a vampire lover. Easily," he added, licking his lips as he remembered his night with the other two.

"Oh yeah, Angel and Kitten are two of my family, twins who like to share tricks."

"Sibling twins?" Xio asked with an arched eyebrow as he wisely let all talk of mating fall to the wayside. "Pretty. Can we watch sometime?"

"Well, you can try, but Iíd be willing to wager everything you have that they pull you in. They like playing with people, not being watched. And theyíll be all over you the moment they lay eyes on you. As soon as I let them know itís okay, that is," Kel added after thinking about that. "They wonít go after you when youíre with me otherwise."

"Would you mind?" Xio asked quietly, brushing his lips back and forth across the nape of his loverís neck. "Would you play with us if we did? Iíd like that. Iíd love to play with you and your pretty little twins, or perhaps with Derek and this Nick I have not yet met. Would you like to have three vampires play with you, taking you, claiming you?"

Kel shuddered with arousal. "Either," he mumbled. "Both." He shifted closer to Xio, his leg rising to curl over the vampireís waist. Suddenly remembering moments from the previous night, he snickered. "Guess I know now why you wanted blood, Xi. Just think, this time no rubber and you can drink from me."

"Youíll let me?" Xio asked, somewhat surprised at the sudden about face. He actually thought he might have to thank Derek and his mate after all. If Kel hadnít have had an experience with vampires already, Xio had the feeling that it wouldnít be quite this easy to convince the young mortal of his intentions. "Youíll let me drink from you? No subterfuge this time? Youíll let me taste you?"

"Not like I have to worry about catching anything fatal from you, after all. Last night I thought you were just a guy with a really creepy kink. Now I know why. And really, itís not like youíre the only one whoís going to get something out of it," Kel admitted, shivering as he remembered Derek and Nick feeding from him.

"Oh, I wonít be, that I promise you," Xio purred, licking his way along the artery in Kelís neck. "I canít tell you how hard it was to restrain myself, to keep from biting down more than the little taste I allowed myself on this lovely, pulsating neck. I wanted to make a meal out of you, caro, to feast of your flesh and gorge myself with your blood and your sex. Now I can," Xio purred. "But first you eat. I wonít have you passing out due to hunger and lack of protein. I insist you eat."

Rolling his eyes, Kel sat up. "Geez, for a guy who doesnít eat, you sure are obsessed with food. Iíve gone a lot longer than a few hours without eating and it hasnít hurt me any."

"But you havenít had someone fucking you while draining your plasma from you, thereby making you iron deficient and perhaps anemic. So eat!"

"Yes, Daddy," Kel snorted, rising to his feet. "But if I have to eat, do you have something breakfast like? Cold Italian isnít my first choice," he added, eyeing the still covered meal from the early morning hours and not mentioning that it hadnít seemed particularly appealing at that hour even hot.

"Iím sure thereís something in the kitchen, but weíll have to scrounge to see what there is.

"And donít call me daddy, or I might just have to warm your backside for you, capice?"

"Oh kinky," Kel breathed, grinning. "I might like that, you know. And do you have anything I can put on, or should I prance around naked?" He knew he could put his clothes back on, but he really didnít feel like wearing anything that tight right now.

"I like you prancing around naked; itís arousing," Xio grinned but nonetheless pointed to his closet. "Over there, help yourself to whatever you like; my things are yours, caro."

Kel glanced up and down Xioís length. "I really hope you have sweats or a robe that isnít ankle length on you, or Iím going to look like an idiot." He padded over to the closet and started flipping through the garments curiously.

"Oh, I donít know, I think youíd look rather... adorable... with everything bunched around your feet looking like a little boy," Xio snickered.

Kel glared. "Do you want me to call you daddy?"

Xioís eyes darkened, and he stood, menacingly. "Try it and see what happens, my little prey," the vampire intoned, looming over his lover playfully.

"Ohh, getting all vampy on me? Daddy?" Kel taunted, coming back out of the closet to watch Xio hungrily.

"Grrr," Xio snarled, pouncing and sinking his teeth into Kelís neck, taking a few sweet sips before sealing the wounds and releasing him. "Run, little boy, run away or Iíll eat you."

"Iíve never been scared of the big bad wolf," Kel laughed, sliding his arms around Xioís neck. "So do it already!"

"Iíll huff and Iíll puff and Iíll blow you when you least expect it," Xio smirked, picking Kel up and spinning him around playfully. "But first you eat. I insist! Go, kitchen, now!"

"If youíre going to be this bossy all the time, Iím going to have to rethink this," Kel retorted laughing. He paused to snatch up a robe, an authentic Japanese silk kimono more than a century old had he but known it, before heading out of the bedroom. "You know that I have no idea where the kitchen is, right?"

"Big room, first floor, has a stove, dishwasher, sink, cupboards, pantry and refrigerator in it," Xio snarked as he grabbed a less expensive everyday robe, thinking that his kimono never looked so good on him.

"Your first floor is bigger than some neighborhoods Iíve seen," Kel retorted. "You should provide a map."

"Ah but whereís the fun in that? Later on, after youíve been fed and watered, weíll play vampire and prey, and you can run, and Iíll hunt you and devour you when I catch you," the vampire laughed. "You can dazzle me your ability to evade me."

"As much fun as that sounds, we might want till later to try it. My friends are going to start worrying soon if I donít get back and let them know whatís going on." Kel hesitated, then continued, "You could come with me if you like."

"Iíd love to, if you think they wonít mind," Xio husked, picking Kel up in his arms and heading down to the kitchen to feed his mate, not that he would tell Kel that just yet.

At first a bit startled to be picked up so easily yet again, Kel soon relaxed into Xioís embrace. "I could get used to this," he murmured, enjoying Xioís easy strength. "And no, they wonít mind so long as you give us a little time alone to discuss what weíre going to do."

"I can do that. I can do whatever you need of me," Xio replied, nuzzling Kelís neck as he walked them into the kitchen and set the young man down on a chair so that he could forage for his lover.

Kel wondered if Xio really thought he didnít notice all the possessive actions and comments, but he was grateful that Xio wasnít pushing him to answer yet. He liked the vampire, but he didnít trust his own feelings, not when things were moving so fast. "I wonder if you really have any idea what youíre getting yourself into."

"Iím getting myself into a family; how wrong can that be?" Xio asked with a grin as he set about making a breakfast of oatmeal for the young man, which was sadly the only breakfast type food he had in his house.

Laughing, Kel shook his head. "I donít think I can explain it to you. You kinda need to experience us all to understand." Heíd briefly mentioned Angel and Kitten earlier, but no way was he going to try to explain Casey. He shuddered at the thought. Xio could experience everyone for himself in a little while.

"One would think you would be attempting to lull me into a sense of complacency instead of trying to terrify me. And Iím a vampire, so it takes a great deal to do that," Xio replied nervously.

"Just want you to know what youíre getting yourself into," Kel shrugged. "And complacency would be pointless. Youíll see why for yourself about five minutes after you meet everyone." The aroma of the oatmeal as Xio set it in front of him roused his appetite, and he dug in hungrily.

"This is not instilling confidence in me," Xio muttered, swallowing loudly. It was embarrassing. Here he was, a vampire who measured his lifespan in centuries, and he was nervous about meeting the Ďfamilyí of his mortal lover who hadnít even seen twenty years yet.

"Donít worry, Iíll protect you," Kel promised, hiding his grin behind another spoonful of his breakfast.

"Youíd better," Xio replied quickly.

Kel lost his battle against mirth and started laughing. "You look like a man facing his execution! Weíre not that bad!"

Xio snorted and wrapped his arms around Kelís waist. "Youíre insatiably devious and actually give my stamina a run for its money. And thatís just one of you. Youíre talking about an entire brood. Itís a fearsome prospect."

"Hey, Iím not planning to share you that much!"

"But you are planning on sharing me somewhat?" Xio asked, brushing his lips back and forth across the nape of Kelís neck.

"Well, I think it would be pretty hot to see you with some of them," Kel admitted. "As long as Iím there too, and Iím the one who gets to stay. If you want to, that is."

"I want you anywhere, any way, and as many ways as I can get you," Xio purred, licking a path from neck to ear and back again. "And if means getting to play with others at the same time, the more the merrier. I remember some of the orgies I had in my early days after being turned," Xio continued with a misty smile. "I think I helped to invent the Ďwhen in Romeí phrase."

Kelís eyes widened slightly. "Sounds like you might be able to show me some new moves after all. Weíll have lots of time to discuss it in depth." He realized that he was taking it for granted that the others would agree and they would be living here, but he really couldnít imagine them refusing. And he finally acknowledged to himself how much he wanted it.

"Yes, we will," Xio purred, rubbing himself against his mortalís back. "We will have decades to discuss it, perhaps even centuries. And I shall enjoy spending that time teaching you everything I know."

"Centuries," Kel repeated faintly. "Oh. I guess so. I hadnít really thought that far ahead yet. Centuries. Wow."

"I may look to be but in my twenties, caro," Xio replied softly. "But I am in actuality thousands of years old. And all that experience is now yours," he smirked.

Kel blinked. And blinked again. "Maybe I better start thinking about whether I want to be a vampire, Ďcause I think you may kill me otherwise."

"Ah, but what a way to go," Xio smirked, nudging Kelís back with his hips. "Now hurry up and finish your breakfast like a good little boy. We have family to go see."

"You should probably eat too before facing that." Kel frowned slightly. "And I guess Iím the only source for that."

"Not necessarily. I have a few bags of blood in the fridge. It is rather Buffy the Vampire Slayer-ish, but it does work," Xio replied with a grin. "Forty seconds in the microwave and itís at regular blood temperature. However, if you truly want to..." the vampire finished, letting the sentence die off and not mentioning that he didnít need to eat since he wanted to.

Kel laid his spoon down and turned to face Xio. "I think I do. I think... I think I like the idea of you feeding from me."

"Gato," Xio moaned, his head dipping and his tongue coming out to lave along Kelís neck down to his collarbone, tasting the salt of Kelís skin, feeling the pulse of the rent boyís blood through paper thin veins. "Ah, caro mio, nothing would please me more than to feed from you."

"God, do it then," Kel groaned, his head falling back. "Want to feel you drinking from me. Please."

Fangs extending, Xio snarled hungrily and sank his teeth into Kelís neck, drinking hungrily as his hands wrapped around Kelís waist, holding him tight as he swallowed.

"Oh God," Kel moaned, feeling himself harden as the incredible pleasure of Xioís bite flowed through him. His back arched, and his hands rose, reaching up to clutch at Xioís shoulders.

Gulping a few more mouthfuls of blood, Xio reluctantly withdrew his fangs and licked the bloody neck until the wounds healed over. "Ah, caro," Xio murmured, "you taste sweeter than the finest wine."

"I think youíre prejudiced. But just keep thinking that," Kel said, surprising himself with a surge of possessiveness.

"Donít worry, I will," Xio smirked. "I could drain you dry but dare not unless you wish to turn as well. I would never do that to you. It must be your decision alone, and I will never speak on it again unless you initiate the conversation. But enough of this. Go, dress, wear my shirt; I want you to smell of me and have me wrapped around you when we meet your family."

Kel laughed, wondering what Xio would do if he decided to continue working. The vampireís jealousy was already obvious. "You donít need to stake your claim, you know," he teased lightly. "But I like the idea."

"Any more than you do, but itís a nice feeling, no?" Xio smirked "Ownership. And you do own me, caro, for all eternity."

"Thatís going to take some getting used to," Kel admitted. He kissed Xio lightly. "I think Iím going to enjoy it."

"Anybody home?" Kel called a while later, leading Xio inside the abandoned warehouse that served as his home.

"Kel, that you?" Angel called out, sticking a sleepy head out of a room where he had been half dozing next to Kitten. "Weíve been worried about... you? Whoís this?"

"This is Xio. The guy I went home with last night," Kel explained, seeing more of his extended family appear as they heard his voice. "He wants me to stay with him. All of us to stay with him, but just as family. Heís mine." Kel looked around, trying to judge their reactions.

"I want you all to think about it and tell me what you think."

"He wants us all to stay with him and doesnít want anything from us?" Carly, one of a pair of twin girls who were the oldest of the group, asked dubiously.

"Kel, youíre the first person to tell us not to fall for a johnís line," Angel pointed out soberly, much too old for one so young. "You canít trust anyone outside the family, remember?"

Dark-haired Curt, one of the older ones in the group, nodded. "There arenít any free rides, Kel, you know that; once heís bored, youíll be gone."

Xio wisely kept his own counsel for the moment, knowing that this was one battle that Kel had to win on his own.

Kel shrugged. "I know. And I didnít really believe it at first. Still havenít agreed to anything, especially not long term. But I am thinking about it," he admitted. "But even if it is just a line, weíd still be in a nice place, fed, clothed, and weíd be able to go to school. Sounds win-win to me."

"Sounds too good to be true to me," Kitten retorted from beside her twin.

"And me," Casey said, frowning at Xio after glancing at her own twin and seeing the concern in Carlyís eyes.

"I know it sounds like a line, but I have searched my whole life for Kel, and I will do whatever it takes to make him happy, and if keeping you safe and sound will make him happy, then that is what Iíll do."

"Youíre right," Kitten said bluntly, "it sounds like a line." She eyed the stranger challengingly.

Kel bit his lip but let the others go on, knowing that his own judgment wasnít as clear as it should be when it came to Xio.

Curt nodded, glaring at the stranger, his dark green eyes narrowed.

"So young and beautiful to be so jaded," Xio sighed. "But that is your choice to believe or not believe. I love him, and I will do whatever it takes to make him happy, even if it means buying this hovel and letting him do with it what he will so he may keep you all safe. Money is of no consequence to me, only Kel."

"Pretty words," Casey said harshly, frowning.

"Guys," Kel said, looking at each of them in turn, "I want this. I want him."

"Then I guess we give it a try and find out if itís a line or if itíll work."

"Of course itís a line, what else could it be?" Curt snarled, glaring at the newcomer. "Itís just a bunch of bull like it always is." He looked at the others, a momentary regret flashing in his eyes. "Iíll keep the place safe until you all are back."

Kel slumped against the wall, staring at the door Curt had just exited through, praying to see him come back, but to no avail. "God, weíre already falling apart. Am I making a mistake?"

"Curt had to make his own choice, just like all of us do," Kitten sighed, sounding much older than her fifteen years. "And I think we owe it to you to try this if itís what you want."

Torn by the loss of one of his family, Kel still hesitated, turning confused violet eyes to Xio.

"I told you already, caro, if this is where you wish to stay, I will stay too... with some improvements to benefit all. I have lived in worse, though, in my life and better than where I live now. However, wherever you are from now on is where I will call home. Just let me know if I need to hire a lawyer to buy this building; that is all I ask."

Angel, whoíd been watching Xio carefully, gauging his body language as much as his words, nudged Kitten. "He acts just like Dad used to act when Mom would get all stubborn. Remember, Kit, how he would say that he might be king of the castle but she was the queen of his heart and heíd do whatever her highness commanded? Itís kinda like what this guy just said to Kel. Just not as posh or stick up his ass sounding."

Kitten nodded. "Yeah, and he looks at Kel the way Mom and Dad looked at each other too. And Kel looks at him the same way." She glanced at Carly and Casey, whoíd been listening and nodded, waiting until theyíd slowly nodded as well to turn back to Kel.

"Kel, youíre nuts if you donít take him up on it," Kitten stated. "We can all get out of here, so just say yes already, and then you can go back and see if you can break his bed or something."

Kel gaped at her for a moment, seeing the smiles on everyoneís faces, and he started to smile as well. Turning around, he threw himself into Xioís arms. "Yes!"

"Oh thank God!" Xio breathed, hugging Kel to him fiercely. "Do you have any idea how much it would have cost me to fix this place up?"

Kel burst into laughter. "I guess that proves itís true love."

Xio grumbled but didnít deny the claim. "Well, of course it is; do you know of anyone else who would adopt an entire clan just to keep the one he loves?"

"God, are they always going to be this sappy?" Casey groaned, making Carly elbow her in the ribs.

"Jealousy will get you nowhere," Kel retorted, nestling closer to Xio with a happy smile on his face.

END

  since 02-17-07

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