Kiss me while I'm still alive, kill me while I kiss the sky.
Let me die on my own terms...

--- My Life, 3Doors Down

It was months before life at the hospital got back to anything resembling normality, and months after that before Joe's life got back on track. He spent endless hours in interrogation rooms of the LAPD and of the FBI. Once they figured out that he was, more or less, an innocent bystander, he spent even more hours with the DA planning the case against Dr. Bassett.

Basically, until Bassett caved to the murder charges of those girls despite the fact he'd only had a hand in killing one, Joe had no life. He suspected, in his darker moments, that they were keeping him on the line as a back-up scapegoat. The public was desperate for a killer to be caught, and the LAPD was going to send someone to jail for life…any someone.

The good news was that being involved in a government project that went south in a big, public fashion, Joe had been pretty much guaranteed his choice of appeasement. When all he asked for was his old job back at the VA and to be left alone, there had been nearly audible sighs of relief in the conference room.

Gwen still kept in touch with him, asking if he'd heard from Simon and checking to make sure he was still alive. He wasn't sure why she expected him to kill himself, but he definitely got that vibe from her. He'd been around too many cops and medical professionals the last ten years not to know it. Joe always gave her the same answer, "He hasn't shown up and I'm fine."

Conversations with Gwen were at least short, if not painless.

Even a year after Simon's dramatic escape, he was still having dreams about the vampire. Joe honestly wished that he could call them nightmares, but the only nightmarish thing about them was the blood. The rest of the dreams, well, they were erotic in the extreme and drove him nuts. Consciously, he wanted nothing to do with Simon, wanted no part in the bloodlust that fueled the immortal. Even subconsciously, Joe knew he was disgusted and repulsed by the killings because he was, after all, a doctor who was geared entirely towards healing people.

Everything else, though, was completely subjective. Simon himself was compelling and attractive. Not the type Joe would normally go for when he gave in to the impulse to do more than just look, but there was no doubting Simon's sexual charm. And the knowledge that he had gathered from his time living through the ages was an attraction in and of itself to Joe. Not to mention the vampire's utter confidence and complete lack of fear.

Stirring restlessly in his bed, again caught in the endless cycle of his thoughts, Joe finally gave up and turned on the light. He tossed the blankets aside and padded silently to the bathroom. Automatically, he pulled out the small bottle of sleeping pills and took two. He rationed them out to the nights where he needed to sleep, like before a surgery or procedure of some kind when he had to be fresh.

After washing them down with some water, Joe trudged back to bed and slipped beneath the covers. Sighing deeply as he got comfortable, his thoughts again turned to Simon and he groaned, muttering, "Damn you, Simon, get out of my head and let me sleep!"

Fortunately, that's exactly what happened and Joe drifted into darkness.

* * * *

"Damn you, Simon, get out of my head and let me sleep!"

Simon grinned at the irritated hiss barely heard from the young doctor down below. He'd known that Joe wouldn't forget him, but hadn't realized the extent to which he'd burrowed into the other man. Well, that wasn't entirely true. That last moment when he'd stared into Joe's panicked eyes back in the hospital, Simon hadn't been able to tell if the panic was because he was, or wasn't, going to take Joe with him. The fact that it had been there at all had pleased him to such an extent that he'd hesitated overlong.

Leaving Joe behind had, however, been the only choice, much to Simon's regret. There had barely been enough time as it was to escape the military goons chasing after him. It had just figured that for once, the cops and the military had been able to work in concert chasing after him instead of getting in each other's ways as they generally did. He'd gone straight to the Canadian border and across it into relatively safe territory.

And though every instinct he'd had, had demanded that he turn right around and make sure that Joe was all right, Simon had ignored them. He'd known that the doctor would be all right, that Gwen would make sure the innocent man stayed out of trouble and out of jail. Because while Joe might question his innocence, Simon didn't and knew that no one else did, either. He shivered lightly as he remembered the long conversations they'd had which had always played on several levels. So earnest and straightforward, it had called to Simon like a drug.

Still did, point in fact. The reason that he'd returned to LA. The reason for being on top of Joe's roof and listening to the other man night after night, waiting for just the right moment to start his campaign.

He was going to claim what was rightfully his.

Thanks to modern science, Simon now knew exactly why only a few of his Chosen had become his Children through the ages. Though it still didn't explain the disparity of why some went insane and had to be put down, and some didn't. Simon had always put it down to a predisposition to goodness that couldn't be turned, but perhaps it was all science and biology, unknown terms back then. Perhaps some of his children just weren't completely compatible and it took the form of madness. Thankfully, that wasn't something he had to worry about with Joe.

Shrugging it off for the moment, he'd let Joe play with it once they were safely tucked away somewhere, Simon opened his hearing again to the other man. The soft, almost-snore and the steady thrumming of the heart was soothing in a fashion that Simon hadn't felt in almost a hundred years. Since his last companion had left him.

Even after all this time, Simon gritted his teeth at the thought of Patrick. His lover. His betrayer. Now, his nemesis. The murders that Gwen and the authorities had been so hot to stop, were Patrick's work, not his. Butchering like that simply wasn't his style. He occassionally lost control, as he had in the hospital, or made an example, but he hadn't really killed to feed in a couple of centures. He simply didn't need as much blood as he used to.

After a hundred years of being a vampire, Patrick still loved the flashiness of scaring mortals into remembering their mortality. He never remembered that it only caused them to go after the Immortals with a vengeance.

Forcing himself to let it go for the time being, Simon thought, Even you make mistakes, Molinar. But this time, you've made the right decision.

This time, Simon would have the soulmate that he'd been searching for, for an aeon.

* * * *

Rubbing his eyes, exhausted from the triple shifts that he'd just pulled, Joe tossed his keys onto the coffee table and collapsed onto the couch. He was off for the next two days and planned to sleep through both of them.

"Well hello, Joe, what do you know?"

Joe froze, up to and include his heart stuttering in his chest, at Simon's voice. Then he launched himself onto his feet, looking wildly around the dark apartment. "Simon! Where are you?"

The vampire stepped out of a corner and replied, "Do you know, I've always hated that expression?"

Taking a breath, Joe ran a hand through his short curls and tried to calm down. So far, Simon hadn't made any threatening moves. The thing to do, obviously, was find out why he was there. Maybe he just needed a place to hide out. Keeping the couch between them, Joe asked, "Why are you here, Simon?"

"I was lonely."

Joe's jaw dropped. "Excuse me?"

Grinning impudently, Simon repeated, "I was lonely. I miss our chats. Good vs. Evil. Nature vs. Nurture. You're an admirable conversationalist, Joe."

Shaking his head, Joe ordered, "If you wanted to talk, you could have used a phone."

"True. But it's so impersonal, don't you think?"

Eyes rolling, knowing that Simon was going to ignore all and any protests, Joe retorted, "No. It maintains that healthy distance from you that I'm so fond of."

"Come now, you don't really mean that."

"Yes, I do."

Without warning, Simon was beside him and in another second, Joe was pinned to the wall. Eyes wide, he stared up at the vampire, fear tripping his heart again and speeding his breath. Simon nuzzled the side of his throat, teeth lightly scraping the skin, and murmured, "You're lying. I can smell it on you, Joe."

Joe swallowed heavily against the hand around his throat. The eyes staring down at him were hypnotic and he could feel the heat from the hard body holding him against the wall, which told him that Simon had fed recently. "Simon, don't."

"Don't, what?" Simon questioned, a finger brushing across Joe's cheek. "Back in the hospital, you could have killed me and you didn't. When that Marine went over the edge and tried to do it, you fought to save me. I'm an abomination, Joe, one that should be erradicated from the face of the earth according to your simple morality. Why don't you? Why didn't you?"

All questions that Joe had tormented himself with during the last year. Closing his eyes, unable to bear that intensity any longer, Joe whispered, "I don't know."

Lips touched his ear as Simon whispered, "Yes, you do."

Then he was simply gone and Joe was left shaking against the wall, afraid and turned-on and bewildered by the entire confrontation. A breeze from across the room told him that Simon had gone out the window, but he couldn't move to close it. He sank to the floor and curled into a ball, the shakes turning to shudders.

His front door burst open and men poured in, silent and lethal, but too late. Joe stared at them a moment, then turned to the wall and hunched his shoulders against them. It was just too damn much to deal with.

Someone crouched behind him and then Gwen's voice asked, "Joe?"

"Go away."

"It's for your own protection."

"Go the fuck away, Gwen. I don't want to talk to you right now."

A hand gripped his shoulder, then rubbed his back in soothing motions. "I'll swing by tomorrow. Bring someone to fix the door."


She hesitated, but only a moment, then said, "I can leave some agents here to…"

"He won't come back tonight. Not after that. Just…leave, Gwen."

Without another word, she stood and ordered, "Everyone out."

He listened to them mill about for a few minutes before finally leaving, but even when the door closed, Joe didn't move. He just closed his eyes and curled into a tighter ball, willing himself to fall into blissful sleep.

Soft hands stroked his back, massaging the tension away. Gentle lips kissed his neck and back through his shirt. He could feel the caring, the tenderness in the caressing fingers and hot, whispered words. The exquisite softness of a rose trailed along his bare arm, tickling him erotically.

Seduction wasn't the gameplan…wooing was.

Joe woke suddenly, then groaned at the stiff muscles that pulled at the sharp movement. He was still on the floor by the wall, hadn't moved a bit it seemed, even though he was usually a very active sleeper. Thick with exhaustion, he sat up and cursed when something jabbed his hand.

Looking over, Joe's mouth went dry as he saw a rose lying beside him.

* * * *

Gwen got comfortable on the sofa while Joe went into the kitchen and got a couple of beers. They both ignored the men rehanging the door and fixing the lock as Joe returned and held out a bottle. She took it and drank deep, sighing as the bitter brew hit her system. Seeing the withdrawn way that Joe sat on the chair, knees up to his chest and practically curled into another ball, Gwen sighed softly.

She couldn't save those women, but she'd be damned if she was going to lose this man, too.

"So. How's the new job going?"

Wincing at the accusing tone, Gwen replied, "I'm sorry, Joe, but I couldn't risk that you'd tip off Simon."

"Tip him off!? Jesus, Gwen, I hadn't even seen or heard from him since that day in the hospital!" Joe exclaimed.

"I'm sorry. I know that. But from what you'd told me, I knew that eventually he'd be back for you."

"So you left the police department to play vampire hunter?"

"It's not playing," she snapped.

Setting the bottle on the coffee table, Joe snapped back, "Well you'll forgive me if I'm not all that receptive to being bait."

Gwen took a breath and calmed down. "Look, Joe. You're not safe here. He will come back for you, he has to. You're…compatible."

He glared at her and replied, "Simon isn't going to hurt me. He could have last night, and didn't."

Leaning forward, Gwen agreed, "He doesn't want to hurt you, Joe, he just wants you, period."

Joe started pacing, then stopped abruptly and demanded, "Are you going to leave me alone? Or are you going to keep watching me in the hopes that Simon comes back?"

"I don't know. Our funding was always pretty sketchy and I think it's drying up. I've stopped the surveillence for now because I think you're right. He's not going to come back right away. He'll want to let some time pass."

"Do you still dream about him?"

The unexpected question threw her. For a long moment, she just gaped at him, then asked, "What?"

His knowing blue eyes remained steady as he repeated, "Do you still dream about him?"

Thinking briefly of the dreams where Simon hadn't been caught and continued to have his way with her, Gwen hesitated before nodding.

"I used to think that it would have been simpler if Simon had just killed me in the hospital," Joe continued, thoughtful. "My life isn't really a life any more. I'm more paranoid that one of your buddies is going to pick me off by accident, than I am about Simon taking me, changing me. He won't do it if I'm unwilling, after all, and I am. I can't not be, I'm a doctor. Killing, even to feed…I couldn't do it."

It sounded to Gwen that Joe was trying to convince himself of that and, worried, she stood to walk to him. Gripping his shoulder, she urged, "Let me move you, Joe. Somewhere he'll never find you. You can have a new life, one that he won't know about."

Turning away from her, Joe gazed out the window, looking far older than his years and too exhausted for anyone to bear. Gwen's heart went out to him and she squeezed his shoulder, trying to offer comfort. He glanced back at her, offered a wry smile, then stepped away, walking to the window.

Gwen watched him pick up a single rose from a narrow vase on the pane and wondered where it had come from, not remembering it from the night before. It touched his lips as Joe breathed it in, nostrils flaring slightly to take in the scenet. With the sun glinting off his dark curls and accenting the hollows of his face, Gwenwas reminded of an otherworldly being, maybe an elf or some other magical creature.

"All done, ma'am."

Spell broken, Gwen crossed to the workman and signed the form he held out to her. When she looked back at the window, Joe had replaced the rose and was watching her. Frowning, she asked, "What?"

He shook his head. "Nothing. Just…I think I'm going to take off for a while."

"Where to?"

He flashed her a smile and, "Checking up on me?"

Gwen nodded, agreeing, "Absolutely."

"I'm going to visit my folks up in Seattle. I haven't, well, seen them for a while."

Relieved, Gwen said, "That's a great idea. And the change of scenery will do you wonders, Joe."

Blue eyes merry again, Joe teased, "Trying to tell me I look like crap?"

Feeling like things were a lot more right with the world than they had been since Simon had come into her life over a year ago, Gwensnorted. "And then some. Get some sleep, would you? You're starting to make ghosts look naturally tanned."

"Only California ones," he quipped, moving to stand beside her. He took her hand and drew her down for a brief, but heartfelt kiss. "Thanks, Gwen, I know you were just trying to help. And you did, actually, even if it wasn't in the way you were hoping."

"How do you mean?"

Joe shrugged and answered, "Just…by being you."

Not quite understanding, but glad to have helped anyhow, Gwensaid, "I'm glad. So. Call me when you get to where you're going?"

He walked her to the door and replied, "I will."

"Have a good visit with your folks."

An odd smile surfaced on his face as he said, "Thanks, I will."

Staring at him another long moment, Gwen finally offered, "Well, drive safely."

"I will. Take care of yourself."

He closed the door before she could reply, and Gwen hesitated. But there really wasn't anything else to say, so she shrugged and headed down the hall.

* * * *

The drive from LA to Seattle took forever, and Joe didn't stop except to get gas and food and use a bathroom when necessary. He slept in rest areas and didn't leave the highway until he was in his old home town, just north of Seattle. He drove the familiar streets automatically, noting the changes and the things that had stayed exactly the same.

It was dusk as he pulled into the cemetery parking lot and fast growing dark as he approached his parents' gravesite. The area was well tended, more like a park than a cemetery. He sat on the ground in front of the headstones and looked at them silently, feeling as pained as he had the day a drunk driver had taken them from him.

"Hey Mom, Dad. Just wanted to let you know that I think it's going to be a really, really long time before I see you guys again, if ever. And I know you're probably disappointed in me, but…I love him," Joe whispered, again feeling the truth that he'd realized standing in the sun and holding Simon's rose. "I couldn't kill him because of that and I'm going to become a monster because of that. Self-damnation, isn't it? But then, you know I've never taken the easy road. I'm sorry."

He stayed there for a long time. The moon rose and beamed down on the cemetery, supplemented by the stars. This was going to be his time from now on. The night. Funny how life prepared you for how things would work out. He'd never been a night-owl until med-school. Ever since then, he'd been more comfortable in the darkness than the sun.

Standing, Joe placed the rose that Simon had given him, now wilted and dying, on his parents' shared headstone. "Bye guys. See you around."

Joe walked back to his car, not passing anyone on the way. His hand was on the car door when Simon greeted cheerfully, "I've always loved cemeteries, don't you? So peaceful and soothing."

Half-smiling, Joe turned to find Simon sitting on a monolith some ten feet off the ground. Gazing up at him, he asked, "How'd you know?"

Jumping lightly to the grass, Simon crossed to him and replied, "You were driving like a lemming, Joe. Straight ahead and without concern for anything else but reaching the end. I was more worried that you wouldn't get here at all, than where you were going."

"You're a bastard, Simon," Joe stated.

Eyes twinkling in the bright moonlight, Simon said, "Quite right. However, I have it on good authority that I'm worth the trouble."

"Is that so?"

"Absolutely. Of course, most of those authorities have been dead for a couple of hundred years, but that's beside the point."

Joe laughed, unable to help himself, feeling freer than he had in years. This man, this vampire, who was so quixotic and irreverent and devastatingly intense, had captured his heart without even trying. Or, at least… "Were you trying to make me fall in love with you? Back at the hospital, I mean?"

Shaking his head, Simon cupped his chin and replied, "No. That was the only good which came of that entire, distressing episode. Well, that and sending Bassett to jail. Do you know how much of a psychopath the man is? Trust me."

Smiling a bit, Joe replied, "Mm. More good authority?"

"The best."

"I see," Joe murmured, looking up into Simon's eyes. The hand on his chin was cool, almost chilled, which told Joe that Simon had waited to feed. That the vampire was going to feed on him. Swallowing, with desire, apprehension, need and dread, he whispered, "Not here, Simon."

"I know. Come with me, Joe. I'll give you everything you never knew you needed," Simon whispered hotly into his ear.

Shivering, Joe leaned into the embrace, holding tight to the man who would be his…his what? His master? His father? His lover? All of those things?

"Easy now. One thing at a time, love," Simon assured him softy. "Let's go somewhere more private. Then we'll get to know each other…intimately."

Joe shuddered and pulled back with a nod.

* * * *

Something bothered Gwen over the next couple of days, though she couldn't figure out what, exactly. It wasn't until the third day that she gave in to the impulse to snoop into Joe's life again, only this time into his past. With her new security access, it took barely any time, which was really kind of scary.

What she found, though, sent a wave of despair through her. Joe had no parents, hadn't had since he was sixteen and they'd been killed by a head-on by a drunk driver. So he wasn't somewhere nice and safe and homey, he'd gone to a graveyard. And that look that he'd shot her now made sense.

Irony. The bittermost kind.

She knew, then, that he was well and truly gone and with him, any hope of catching and stopping Simon. They were together, wherever that might be, and would keep off the radar altogether. With a heavy heart, she picked up a phone to call her new boss and break the bad news.

* * * *

"Nice place."

Simon grinned briefly at Joe's comment as the young man took in the rich surroundings. They were in a very posh hotel in Seattle now, the drive back to the city taking very little time. He'd held Joe's hand the entire way over, occassionally bringing it up to kiss or hold against his cheek. It felt almost as though if he let go, Joe would fade away like an impossible dream.

He tugged the other man into his arms and danced them slowly into the rest of the suite. The attendant flushed at the display, but Simon ignored him, pleased only by the breathless laugh that Joe uttered when he was dipped.

"Simon, let me up and pay the man, would you?"

Smug, Simon pulled Joe upright and gave him a short, hard kiss before crossing to the attendant and pulling out a bill without looking. "Out you go. Make sure there's a do not disturb sign, would you?"

Joe was laughing, blue eyes twinkling as Simon all but pushed the attendant out the door. "That was rude."

Walking over to the other man, Simon asked, "Do you know the fabulous thing about these hotels?"

"What's that?"

"The get paid more than enough to ignore rudeness. Expect it, even. Aside from that, the soundproofing is phenomenal."

Joe flushed, dropping his eyes at the obvious reference, and Simon grinned. "Care for a drink?"

"Planning to romance me?" Joe questioned lightly, walking towards the balcony doors.

Simon hurried to his side and wrapped his arms around Joe's waist, enjoying the gasp of surprise his speed evoked. Sucking lightly on the side of Joe's throat, he murmured, "Always, my love."

Shivering, Joe leaned back in his arms and offered more of his neck. Simon swallowed, smelling the blood beneath the tender skin, feeling the heat it gave off as an aphrodisiac completely separate from the man himself. He hadn't fed since before leaving Joe the rose and though he could, technically, go quiet a while longer without blood, being as old as he was, he was hungry.

Simon nipped at the bared offering, but didn't take it. Instead, he sucked until the blood rose to mar the skin and Joe was groaning in his arms. His hands slid over Joe's chest, rubbing lightly as he continued to mouth where he'd be feeding from later, making it as soft as possible, making that later pain as little as possible.

"Simon," Joe murmured, turning in his arms and lifting his face.

Taking Joe's mouth in a slow, languid kiss, Simon savored the other man's eagerness as well as his sweetness. He gripped Joe's ass and pulled him flush, deepening the kiss and exploring his new lover's mouth. They had eternity, but Simon wanted to know everything about Joe right then and there. It made him groan with need, and moan in pained pleasure. Simon pulled back to looked down at Joe, the flushed face soon to be replaced with stark whiteness and fine veins. He knew the other would look even more beautiful thus and craved it.

Joe's eyes fluttered open at the pause and he asked, "What's wrong?"

"Nothing," Simon assured him, brushing back the curls on Joe's forehead. "Everything's perfect."

The love shining back at him took Simon's breath away so that he couldn't speak. It was ridiculous that after living as long as he had a simple look such as this could fill him with tenderness and longing. Relegating such things as a product of his upbringing, Simon dismissed it from mind and turned to more important things.

"So that means we can skip the drink, right?"

Joe laughed, as intended, and nodded with, "Yes. We can definitely skip the drink. Where's the bedroom in this place. Jeeze, Simon, you could fit my entire apartment into this living room."

Grinning, Simon kept his arm around Joe's waist and led him towards the back of the suite. "That's the point, my love. You have a new life, a better one, I trust, with me."

Joe leaned on Simon and sighed, "So do I."

Stopping just inside the bedroom, Simon looked down at the mildly apprehensive expression and whispered, "We won't do this if you aren't sure, Joe. I couldn't bear for you to hate me a year, ten years, or even a hundred years from now. I would rather leave you, than that."

"I won't," Joe whispered back, taking Simon's face in his hands. "I love you, Simon. This is's a little scary for me. What's going to happen? I need to you tell me exactly what's going to happen."

"First we're going to make love. I am going to worship your body as it is meant to be worshipped. Then, just as I give you the most stunning orgasm you've ever had in your life, I'm going to drain you. While you're on the brink, I will feed you from my life's blood. Then you will sleep like the dead for about two days. When you wake, you will be like me."

And that was exactly what happened. Simon learned everything about his mortal lover's body as he could. How he tasted, how he moaned, how his hips would jerk uncontrollably when Simon bit sharply at the tender flesh beside his cock. Simon learned the scent and texture of each nipple, the tickling path of hair that covered the muscled chest. That was a new one, all of Simon's previous lovers had been as smooth as himself, if not more so.

Simon kept Joe on the edge of orgasm for hours, trembling and begging for more before he even allowed the other man to feel the tip of his cock at Joe's entrance. They were face to face, neither would have it any other way, and Simon stared into the deep blue eyes, darkened further with passion, as his cock slowly pushed inside the other man's body. Joe was gasping with only pleasure, no pain, which was a given considering the amount of personal attention his tongue and fingers had lavished on Joe's backside.

He set up a hard and fast rhythm, taking Joe, riding him with more urgency than he'd felt in longer than he could remember. The pull was close then, the pounding of the blood, the siren smell of it just beneath the flesh.

"Simon, Simon, please, please let me come, please! Need it so bad, need you, need, just, please!"

The begging had been reduced to babbling and Simon grinned fiercely in satisfaction. Joe was so responsive that it sent an additional thrill through him. In this, just as everything else, the young man gave everything he had, opening himself, locking his legs around Simon's thighs and pulling him in hard, adding impact to the taking.

And then it was time. Simon just knew. He leaned in and, just as he pulled off the cock-ring, bit through the tender skin that he'd already marked. Joe screamed in a mix of orgasm and excrutiating pain, but Simon didn't really hear him. He was an animal in rut, fucking and humping harder into the willing body as he fed, drinking down the hot, ambrosial blood. Blood and come, the mix of it intoxicating in the basest of ways, and yet, a connection between them sprang into being at that moment.

Simon could feel Joe's surrender and love in a way he never had with anyone else before. Whether it was the months they'd spent getting to know each other, or some mystical destiny that they were supposed to be bound together for eternity, Simon didn't know or care. His feeding gentled, as did the movement of his still-hard cock within Joe's abused hole.

The heartbeat inside Joe sped up as the heart searched for the blood that Simon had taken. Joe panicked, as Simon had known would happen, and struggled. His throat tore more with the movements and some of the blood spilled onto the pale sheets. Then the fight left his lover and Simon went still inside him, joined as deep as he could possibly go.

He rolled them, flush with power and love and strength, and squeezed his left nipple until blood flowed in a thin stream. Angling Joe's head so that the other man's mouth touched the blood, he ordered, "Drink, Joe, drink from me and we'll be together for eternity!"

For a few horrific seconds, there was no response. Then, just as Simon began to despair that Joe would refuse after all, that he would choose death over becoming a vampire, the mouth latched onto him. He gasped in surprised pain at the force of the sucking, then smiled and wrapped his arms around his lover's back, urging, "That's it, Joe, suck me. Oh, God, feels so good, so good."

And as Joe drank, Simon's orgasm came closer and closer. His balls tightened and his cock got impossibly harder inside his lover's hole. His hips moved again, pushing him in and out of Joe, more and more frantic as Joe continued to suck his nipple and take back the altered blood into himself. The connection hummed between them and he could hear Joe's thoughts: So fucking good, right, all mine, never letting go, never, want him for always, more, got to have more of this, more of him!

It tipped him over the edge and he came, orgasm blindsiding him, taking his body in a way it hadn't in a very, very long time.

Darkness claimed Simon Molinar prematurely for the first time in two centuries.

* * * *

Joe continued to lap at the nipple even though the blood had stopped flowing when Simon had come and passed out. He wanted more, was all shivery with need for more of Simon taking him. His lover's cock was still hard inside him, so he was pretty sure there would be more the second Simon woke.

Now for the waking.

Grinning wickedly, Joe sat up and moved on Simon, whispering, "Love you, Simon, wake up lover, wake up."

Simon groaned finally, his hands moving to grip Joe's thighs before the dark eyes opened, humor glinting in the depths. "You're trying to kill me, aren't you?"

"Good thing I can't then, isn't it?" Joe replied.

"Very good thing," Simon agreed, rolling them again so that he was on top. He echoed the grin on Joe's face and continued, "I'm going to fuck you now."

Joe smirked. "It's about time."

"Oh it's like that, is it?"

Without further warning, Simon drove into him. Joe moaned at the friction and the press over his prostate, both sending bolts of pleasure through him. And it was Simon. And he could feel and see so much more than he ever could before. Each stroke inside him was accentuated, he could actually feel the bulbed head driving into him and the thick vein rubbing along his hole.

It was a much faster orgasm this time, minutes instead of hours, but Joe came screaming again, everything on overdrive as he spilled between them. Simon pumped into him a few more times before coming with a hoarse scream of his own, collapsing on Joe, panting.

Smiling lazily, Joe wrapped his arms around Simon's shoulders, holding him as tight as he could for a long moment and whispering, "I do love you, Simon."

"Mmm, and I you, Joseph McKay," Simon replied, kissing the wound on Joe's neck that was already mostly healed.

This time, sleep pulled at Joe, heavy and inexorable, almost frighteningly so. But Simon was still with him, and would be when he woke, the change complete, so the fear was kept at bay. As he went down into darkness, Joe found that he could regret nothing. The love that warmed him was more than he'd ever had and he would do anything to keep Simon with him.