Tyra - 1999
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Thanks to my beta girls, Heather-Anne and LeAnn for another wonderful job. All mistakes are my own!
I don't own them, you know the drill...
Permission to archive at Mel's, ftp, JADFE and the DarkNN archives.
This is an Adult story. Please, do not read it if adult material offends you or you are underage.
Natalie Lambert's apartment the day after the dinner scene with LaCroix at Azure in the episode "Be My Valentine."
Natalie woke up to a pounding headache. She couldn't remember how she got home. She knew she had gone to meet Nick for dinner, but the rest of the evening was a blur. Matter of fact, as she thought over the last few days. they were all a blur.
Nat moaned as she sat up on the edge of the bed. Her head was swimming. She slowly stood and moved to the bathroom. A quick shower and some aspirin would help her regain some of her senses.
Nat was drying her hair when she came out of the bathroom, and headed toward the kitchen. Coffee--maybe that would help her remember, she thought. The night was still a blur, and the last few days not much better. It wasn't like her to forget things like this. Her hand stopped in mid-reach for the coffee can. She remembered when she had felt this way before.
It was several years ago, the morning after she had met Nick for the first time. Then she was able to trace back the threads of memory to make her mind clear, but this time there were no threads to grab on to. She closed the cabinet door, forgetting about the coffee she was going to make, and headed toward her computer.
The familiar start-up sounds were very reassuring to her. The answers she sought were here. Even though Nick was her best friend, there were some things she didn't share with him. One of them was that ever sense they had met, she had kept a diary. That way if he ever tried to make her forget again, she would have something to help her remember.
She opened the log program that was always active on her computer. She noticed it had been accessed last night. She looked through the list of actions that had been done. A file search and delete and an optimization of her hard drive. The optimization would've erased all traces of the file from the hard drive so that it would be unrecoverable.
Now she had him. The damn vampire had been playing with her memories again. "But you underestimated me again, Nick. Back-ups, they are our friends." She reached for the backup disk among her floppies and popped it into the drive. The last few days had been erased, and the disk optimized, as well. "One more try," Nat whispered as she stood and walked toward the bedroom.
She looked in her hiding place in the closet. She had an old briefcase with a fake bottom. The zip disk was there waiting for her.
She popped it into the computer and started looking for her entries for the last few days. There they were. Nick must have figured she only had one backup. Silly man. When one is dealing with vampires, she thought, you have to be prepared for their dirty mind-games.
The tears flowed down her face as she read about the kisses and touches they had shared. The memories soon came rushing back. Nick had told her Valentine's Day morning on the phone that he loved her. It had been quick and just before he hung the phone up, but he had said it. More so, he had shown it in his kisses and caresses and the sweet things he had started to plan with her about their future.
Then it had stopped. She looked down at the zip case. She remembered hiding something in it. She removed the insert and there it was--the card. Yes, now she remembered. The older vampire and all that was said and all that was done. Nick had made her forget so that the older vampire wouldn't harm her.
"Well, you made me forget, but you didn't choose to leave now, did you?" She picked up the picture of her and Nick at the police department picnic and talked to it. "You couldn't leave me. I know you love me, and I'm tired of being alone. I guess it's time WE figure out what to do next, fang boy." She smiled at her pet name for Nick. It was the one he DIDN'T know about. Well, she thought, didn't know about until he started snooping around in her electronic diary.
Nat started typing her latest entry into her diary. She saved it to the zip drive only and replaced the case. She hurriedly dressed and headed toward the loft. On her way there, she stopped off at the bank to put the disk drive in her safety deposit box.
Nat opened the door to the lift and stepped into Nick's loft. She dropped her coat on the sofa as she quickly took the stairs. Her clothing was shed piece by piece. She stared at Nick, so soundly asleep in his black silk sheets. She loved him, and she wasn't going to let him go. She couldn't bear to live without him anymore than he could without her. She shed her underwear and crawled into bed beside him.
She heard him mumble her name as he turned over, capturing her with his arm. Her breathing eased as she let his coolness calm her. She kissed his lips, and her kisses were returned. They grew more passionate, the hands on her body kneading her flesh. She broke away to breathe, and the kisses traveled down her neck. When she looked into Nick's eyes they were wide open and very golden.
"Natalie," Nick whispered, as his hands captured Natalie's face.
"I remember everything. I know I'm in danger, and I know you won't leave me. You would rather choose for us not to express what is between us, and live with the pain of what could be. Maybe that's what you think your punishment should be, but I can't live like that."
"Nick, bring me across. I won't leave you, and I won't let you leave, and I don't want this bastard, whoever he is, to suck the life right out of my body. What I do want is you. Plain and simple."
"I can't damn you to my hell, Natalie."
"First off, unless I have misunderstood, it would be me that damns me. It is my choice. And second, if hell is living with you and making-love with you and sharing all that we are with each other, then I will gladly walk into the flames."
"I love you."
"And I love you. Please, just give me the choice, Nick. Let me decide for myself."
Nick's started to kiss Natalie again, and his hands pulled her closer to him. As his tongue lightly traced down her neck to the spot that called to him, Natalie stretched her neck toward him.
Nick kissed her sweet skin, then nibbled gently at the soft spot. Natalie moaned as his fangs entered her skin. She felt his love wash over her, and visions of his life. He felt the passion she had for him and the light of her love filling him. She started to fade, and he retracted his fangs.
He sliced his wrist open and offered it to Natalie's slightly parted lips before he could reconsider his actions.
"Please, Lord, don't damn her. Please don't damn her."
Nick felt Natalie suckling at his wrist, and his heart both soared and dropped. She was damned.
Natalie closed her eyes as Nick pulled his wrist from her grasp. "I'm so sorry, Natalie."
"Nick, I'm not damned. I'm with you. How could I be damned if my greatest wish, my most desired prayer, was answered?"
Nick stared at Natalie, their new-found link singing with their love. He pulled her toward him, his lips finding hers.
If this was damnation, he thought, then let me be damned.
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