Private Tales Clashing Fangs

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer

Victoria O'Connor

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Fallon’s cool reason washed over her like a slow river, and her tingling nerves let off their tension like steam. Fallon’s blood was definitely powerful, and the tiny dose was creeping to every finger and toe. It was delightful, if not a little frightening at how little control she seemed to have over it.

“Of course,” she said with a blush. A true rarity, and an action only possible immediately after feeding. She looked around and realized she hadn’t any idea where they were. Her face had been buried in Fallon’s fur as they’d fled the village.

Now Fallon was quite furless, and Victoria could not help her eyes from wandering over her body (not that she made any effort to stop). She cocked a one-sided smirk, "Take mine. I don't mind the cold." She undid the rough twine at her waist and removed the loose-fitting wool shirt to hand to Fallon, then she pulled the skirt up and over her chest and retied it there. It was far less modest, showing her long legs from thighs down, but it did a decent enough job of covering her body.

They started to walk, though Victoria had no particular reason for choosing the direction other than it was sloping downwards. She kept Fallon's hand in hers, again falling into a personality very much unlike her usual self. This beast woman had a way of doing that.

"I am sorry I ruined your ruse.."

Victoria looked at the ground. "It was only a matter of time. I am glad you found me." She would have sacrificed her position in the village a hundred times over if it meant Fallon would come back to her. It wasn't a very strategic plan, and as snowflakes drifted along their path she wondered whether it was already too late to leave the mountains. Somehow the thought of being trapped in the peaks was not so terrible, not if Fallon stayed by her side. Her valiant wolf. A shining protector. How incredibly different they were.

"I was going to kill him," she said softly, looking over at the blonde hair under the starlight. "I would have, if you hadn't shown up. I'm... I'm not a good person, Fallon." She felt a nervous heartbeat start up. "I think I would have killed them all if you hadn't taken me away." She knew she would have. She was already seeing the ruins in her mind when the massive wolf had swept her away. Anger and hate had completely overtaken her when the guards had attacked... and she wasn't even sure if she should feel bad about it. She was delighted that Fallon loved her, but couldn't fathom how.
 
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Fallon

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Fallon had never seen the vampire blush. It was the sort of blushing that showed the soul, a compliment to her eyes and yet a stunning contrast that hinted at a delicate sweetness within. It spoke of a connection, that her smile and shyness came from some deep emotion... and it was a beautiful thing, something real, and Fallon couldn't help but reach out and touch it, her thumb smoothing over the soft rosy skin.

Who'd ever have thought she'd find a vampire so adorably cute? The mere thought of it made her grin to herself in silent amusement.

She had been about to protest to Victoria's undressing, but as her eyes fell on the exposed perfection of her pale flesh and she let out a throaty sound in defeat, accepting the shirt with a wry smirk in thanks. She pulled it on and took the woman's cold hand in hers, smiling to herself at the pleasant tingle she felt whenever their skin touched and fire and ice collided.

Fallon's brow furrowed softly as Victoria spoke, and her hand squeezed, as though afraid the woman might run from her at any moment. She let her words settle for a moment, letting a silence linger before finally speaking.

"You know, my pack insisted that I come find you. Not that they know what you are.. But because they knew I wasn't myself without you. I was hopeless, and miserable, and there were days I'd have welcomed death rather than suffer it any longer." she frowned.

"I'd slaughter any human who sought to harm you..." she bit on her lip at the admission. She'd felt it in the woods, a furious rage normally reserved for the demons in which she hunted, directed toward humans trying to defend their own villages.

"I've never claimed to be a good person either. I am not a friend to humanity I am here to carry out my purpose and tear down whomever stands in the way of it, be it human or otherwise. I have no objections to killing the most innocent of people if they stand against me, or those that I care for." It was different to hunting them, she knew that.

"You must survive.... Because I'd simply die without you." she reasoned.
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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She could feel the tears almost returning when Fallon answered her. This woman was too good for her, and she held fast to the warm hand. In any other case she would have assumed hyperbole, and still appreciated the intent behind Fallon’s words, but she knew there was nothing but truth in them now because of how she herself felt. The only thing that had kept her moving through the dreariness of her fake mortal life had been knowing someday, somehow, she’d see her wolf again.

She pulled Fallon closer and clung to her shoulder with her free hand, hugging her body up against the soothing heat. ”You aren’t allowed to die,” she said, with the barest hint of a smile at the corners of her lips, although her voice betrayed sadness at the slightest entertainment of Fallon’s mortality. ”So I guess I have to survive.” Now she did smile, and squeezed gently at Fallon’s arm.

”What... what did you tell your pack about me?”

Their walk continued with little sign of reaching civilization. They were still in the remote reaches of the Spine, and the village they’d left was likely the only one for leagues. It seemed impossible that they would find any sort of proper shelter, and Victoria was already mentally preparing herself for another day in a cave when they happened upon the dark wooden structure.

It appeared rather suddenly, blending in spectacularly well with the surrounding woods. Its walls had clearly been stacked with logs from the immediate area, and the roof had acquired its share of moss and fungi. It was large, with sturdy double doors and a wide porch.

”What...?” Victoria said softly, almost to herself as they drew closer. There were no footprints in the frosted ground, nor any signs of people from within the darkened windows. She could scarcely believe their luck in finding something better than a hollowed-out tree, but she was hesitant to let her hopes rise too far, given her recent luck.

Her ruby eyes alighted on a pair of antlers erected above the doorway. ”It’s... a hunting lodge.”
 
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Fallon

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Fallon's lips twitched with the slightest of smirks as Victoria forbade her from dying. Unlike her vampire, the Garou were gifted long life, but they were mortal. They healed quickly, but they bled when they were cut and died when their wounds were too grievous, and if they were lucky, old age would catch up to them along the road. It was a long enough road that she pushed the worry of it from her mind for the time being. Their time together had just begun, she wasn't about to start thinking about it ending.

Her heart stuttered as Victoria cuddled into her. It was disarmingly adorable, and she bit down on her lower lip to stop her grin from spreading too wide, her cheek nuzzling at her head with a soft rumble of approval. Her expression paused for a moment however at the question, and now she was the one who blushed. She groaned and dropped her gaze in diffidence and she laughed awkwardly under her breath.. "Everything.. That you saved my life. That you are the most beautiful creature I've ever laid my eyes upon. About the night we spent in the dirt.." she grinned, her cheeks warm with rosy blush, but the grin slowly slipped from her face and she sighed.. "I was as honest with them as I could be... But I couldn't tell them everything."

Fallon's body tensed for a moment as her gaze settled on the little lodge and her grip tightened on Victoria. She was immediately searching for scents, searching and listening for any trace of life. When she was sure that there were no such traces, she eased and looked to Victoria with a soft smile. Fallon was used to sleeping in caves, but they needed something more comfortable. Where such a cabin would be a shabby stay for someone of Victoria's calibre, it would be like nothing Fallon had ever stayed in before, and she stared at it with a slight head tilt before reaching hesitantly to the door's handle.

It wasn't locked, and as the door creaked open the scents that she picked up were human, but they were so faint that she was certain there hadn't been anyone here in some weeks. She eased and stepped inside. It was quaint but cosy, and Fallon's eyes scanned the multitude of hunting trophies that decorated the walls, the comfortable sofa in front of the hearth, the large bed she could see in the other room both a stark contrast to the harsh ground and rocks she was used to.

"It's perfect." She smiled.
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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Do you think you could ever tell them everything? Would they ever understand? It was what she wanted to ask, but she did not. She knew there would be secrets they would have to keep, lies they would have to tell. Victoria couldn‘t tell any vampire the truth about Fallon, but she was quite good at lying. Still, she still felt a small hint of guilt about it in this case. It was like a tiny rock in her shoe: barely there but impossible to ignore.

She followed behind Fallon into the structure. She, too, detected the barest traces of human scents and knew that Fallon must be able to sense them a hundred times stronger. She could also pick out the pine resin in the walls and the musty, sawdust odor from the mounted beast heads and posed taxidermies that served as the lodge’s only decorations. Victoria recalled a vampire lord who had decorated his own home in a rather similar manner... just with different prey.

She scanned the room without a care for the darkness, and while much of the furniture and carpeting was faded and frayed, it was more than acceptable. Next to the hovel she’d been in for the past months, or the literal ground, it was a palace.

Fallon seemed to share her sentiment, and Victoria wondered pridefully what her love would think when she finally saw Victoria’s home. A domestic fantasy played in her head for a few seconds. How would Fallon find silk sheets and canopy beds? How would she react to servants bringing her meals and dressing her in fine clothes? Would she even wear a gown, or would she opt for the more mobile outdoor garments? Had Fallon ever seen the ocean?

She blinked back to reality at the thought of clothes and moved suddenly for the bedroom. She spied the wardrobe. ”Please...” she whispered under her breath and pulled it open to find thick, fleece-lined hunting coats hanging above sturdy forester boots.

”Yes!” she exclaimed into the empty lodge, and moved to the chest of drawers next to it. Within were longjohns and thick socks, and beneath that the drawers held sturdy pantaloons. They were all men’s clothes, but Victoria was brought almost to tears at the thought of having proper attire after so long in what had been little more than a sack.

She emerged holding the soft socks to her face, breathing in the dusty wool and not caring about the lingering human taint. She sauntered over to Fallon, feeling giddier than she had any right to. ”Finally, some real clothes.” She draped her arms over the garou’s shoulders and flashed crystal-white daggers at her. ”So take this hideous thing off of me.”
 
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Fallon

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Fallon's silver gaze seemed to glow slightly brighter in the darkness, reflecting any modicum of light, in this case the faintest slithers of moonlight that filtered in through the dusty windows and pooled across the threadbare floor through the opened door.

She pushed the door closed and flashed a grin at the vampire's back as she pleaded to the wardrobe to hold some semblance of suitable attire. A quiet laugh escaped her as she was clearly pleased by her findings, and Fallon made quick work of setting flame to the hearth and bathing in the heat of it for a brief moment, the ghostly grey of the cabin quickly giving way to the warm, orange glow. Fallon's nose wrinkled as she stared into the the black, glassy eyes of the numerous trophies that now reflected the flickering flames, making them look more alive than dead.

She turned to watch Victoria mosey jubilantly toward her, and her cheeks dimpled with amusement as her fingers deftly untied the skirt she'd secured around her chest, letting it fall around her pale ankles. Her arms wrapped around her waist and ascended her back to pull her close and close the gap between them. The woman couldn't have been more of an opposite to Fallon if she tried, and Fallon couldn't help but find her utterly captivating.

"We won't be needing clothes for a while.." she whispered as her lips grazed the shell of the vampire's ear and her lips found their way onto the soft slope of her neck, teeth dragging over the ivory skin as she pushed her slowly toward the bed.
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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Victoria let out a sigh and curled her fingers against Fallon’s shoulders, pulling her in closer as the garou’s words made her tingle. Until now she had kept her gaze locked on the silver eyes. The way they glowed in the night, the way they flashed back reflections of the moon and licking flames.

Wait a minute... the flames! Victoria had not recoiled from them as she’d reentered the room. She could feel their heat on her back but it did not burn nor pull her down. She glanced towards the hated thing, and though it pained her to look at it she was not blinded.

”You are incredible...” she breathed in awe, although whether Fallon knew if she was speaking about her blood or her romantic prowess was unclear. It had to be the blood, what other explanation was there? She looked down at Fallon and ran her fingers through the white gold hair, and was inhabited by a dangerous thirst for more.

It scared her, and so she eagerly stepped back under Fallon’s direction. She welcomed distraction, and when she felt the back of her legs hit the bed frame she welcomed its soft embrace as well.
 

Fallon

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She formed a cage with her body, ensnaring the woman the moment her back hit the mattress, and her head bowed with a grin to capture her lips with a soft growl that betrayed that which lingered deeper, something far more dangerous and primal.. She didn't just want her, she aggressively, violently wanted her. Something in the way Victoria had reacted to that trifling taste of blood had her fighting the urge to rip open her own flesh and give her more, and resisting the notion to let her teeth rake across that alabaster skin beneath her.

Her gaze drifted wildly over her. It was tempting to test her strength. She'd only ever fought vampires, and despite her hatred of them, she had always found their speed and force nothing short of impressive; many of her own kind had fallen at their hands. But this one, this one wanted to love her, not kill her, and so she found herself in a unique position, the sin of it twisting into a passionate thrill in her mind.

A hand slipped to Victoria's silken thigh where her fingers imprinted with a bruising touch, her lips curling into some semblance of a grin as she looked down at her in mute challenge. It would be the first time they'd lay together on something softer than the cold, hard ground. But it would not be gentle.
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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The bed was blissfully soft, and even with the energy gifted to her by the wolf Victoria felt a deep desire to simply lie in cushioned bliss and let the other woman roam over her body. It was what they both deserved, she decided, after everything they’d endured.

But Fallon did not just explore. She attacked, invaded… conquered. The ferocity of her lips left molten trails across Victoria’s skin, and when her fingers pressed into the cool, timeless flesh, she squirmed.

”Ah…” she exclaimed softly as Fallon’s fingers bit into her leg. Her face betrayed a moment’s alarm at the pain, but after looking into the silver eyes she understood.

Oh… so that’s how she wants to play…”

Victoria was used to being in control, used to giving orders. There was something utterly exhilerating in having that power wrested away from her, but Fallon would have to work for it. She didn’t need to worry about breaking this woman, she didn’t need to worry about holding herself back.

She flashed fangs and reached around Fallon’s waist, pulling her into a grip that would crush lesser beings, digging in her nails just enough to hurt. She felt the garou’s heartbeat against her own, and her bloody irises dilated as the hunt began.

~*~​

The next minutes passed in a blur, floorboards and thick walls splintered beneath the power of the women as they entangled themselves. It was raw, violent, and primal, and somewhere in the middle of it Victoria heard the sweet siren’s song...

Bite me!

It was madness to even consider, but her reason had been frayed to breaking. When Fallon demanded, she obliged.

Her fangs sank easily and she drank deeply. She saw, heard, and felt nothing but the blood. The heat, the power it held. It was unlike anything she’d experienced and she could not stop... not even when her love begged it.

More... more!!! It was all she wanted in the world. Then suddenly she stopped. Her body jerked backwards suddenly and her fangs released with a spray of fresh blood. Her spine cracked as it was wrenched into an arch and she fell writhing to the floor.

Looking back, she would wish that it was because she had heard Fallon's pleas. She would like to say that she had stopped to protect her, that she would never have gone so far as to hurt the wolf... but this was not the case. As intense as the pleasure had been, and terrible gut-wrenching pain had struck her. Like fire that burned from within, Fallon's blood lashed out. It assaulted her veins and tore at her stomach and throat. She doubled over and retched a liter of red-black ichor to the wooden floor.

Her mind was exploding. Pleasure, pain, power. The ringing in her ears intensified, the flavor in her mouth overwhelming. Another wave of slicing nausea overtook her, and she retched again.

The first time she had only taken a tiny amount of the garou's blood. The drops that had fallen on her fingers were nothing next to the sheer volume she had just imbibed. The nausea began to fade... and the true reaction began.

The next time her body convulsed she smashed through the bedframe beside her. Her breathing was ragged, and she growled and rasped with each exhale. Her muscles were vibrating, and they built upon themselves in seconds. Her fangs felt heavy and caught on her lips, and her other teeth cut at her tongue as they never had before. Her eyes snapped open with a shuddering gasp, and if Fallon had the strength to look at her, she would see only obsidian orbs staring back, rings of red blood burning at their center.

Victoria hardly felt herself stand up. It was as if she simply willed it, and it was so. She still stumbled and stuck out an arm to steady herself again the wall... but it crumbled at her touch and she fell into the cold night.

An intense desire filled her. She had to run. She had to charge through the night. If she did not, surely the power inside of her would eat her alive. She looked up, saw the moon. She screamed at it, and her eldritch shriek defied description.

Sprinting now. Trees flew past her, snowflakes melted in her wake. It was not enough. Not fast enough, not far enough. Change. Transform. Fly. Yes, she must become a bat and tear through the sky. She leapt---

But she did not fly. Her body had morphed but remained firmly on the ground. Strong lungs pumped air, and heavy padded paws ripped at the ground. Keen ears heard the wind tearing past, and the scents... fuck the scents! She skidded to a halt, and panting amongst the trees was not a bat but a jet black wolf with eyes of crimson.

Fallon!

The thought struck her harder than any sunbeam. It was as though her mind had been hooked from orbit and flung back to the ground. Where was she? What was she doing? What... was she? Oh... what had she done?

She pulled at the air and found the garou's scent at once. Like a beacon it drew her back. She ran faster than steeds, heedless of the branches and thorns that ripped at her fur. The cabin came into view, and she bolted for the hole in the wall that she'd made, leaping through.

A desperate bark and a whine heralded her entry. Where was Fallon?
 
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Fallon

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Victoria.. Stop...

The reality of how much blood the woman had drained for her seemed to hit her suddenly and far too late. She'd been weakened to the point of being unable to fight back, to the point of breaking her promise to her that she would stop her if it went to far. At that point, so tangled in lust she hadn't cared. Her mind was clearer for that brief moment in between the realisation and that nebulous haze that came with blood loss.

Fallon dragged in a desperate gasp of air as the vampire released her deathly grip, but the sudden rush of air wasn't enough to stop the growing darkness at the edges of her vision. Her face was spattered with her own blood, and her head turned to watch as the red woman's body rebelled, the thick, dark puddle of her own life creeping slowly across the floor toward her.

Her eyes were heavy as unconsciousness pulled violently at her, but she ignored it and rolled onto her side, her hands splashing in the hematic pool as she slowly dragged herself toward the writhing vampire. Something was wrong, and worry drove her even as blood continued to spill from the wound in her neck, as her muscles failed and her organs slowly shut down and her breathing slowed.

The last thing she saw of Victoria were her eyes, inky black and with only a trace of her usual glistening rubies. Fallon's gaze widened for only a moment, and suddenly the woman left her, and she stared at the void she'd torn in the cabin wall for what seemed an eternity.

"Victoria?.." She tried to call the name but it passed as merely a breath from her lips.

Cold settled over her - the sort that could only come from the lack of blood pumping in her veins. She gave up staring out into the empty night and spent the last of her energy dragging herself through the river of her own blood to collapse in front of the hearth to shiver, and then still as unconsciousness claimed her.
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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The silence was terrifying. Her pointed ears turned this way and that, and while they were not as ultrasensitive as her normal winged form, they could hear every creak and whisper of the cabin as the morning air began to warm.

She moved now, drawing at the air with a cold nose. The smell of blood was overwhelming, and even now she found it difficult to resist lapping up the clotted stains on the wood floor. No, she must focus, and she moved quickly into the main room.

Another outburst from her canine throat as she saw her: pale, still, alone. The midnight ears flattened back against her skull as she leapt, straddling over Fallon's fallen form with four sturdy legs and nuzzling desperately at her face.

What had she done? She had known it was a mistake, she knew she would not have been able to control herself. Stupid Victoria! Look what you've done! Her love, her life, lay in a pool of her own blood and she had left her. What was worse, she had forgotten her. Victoria did not remember if it was hours or minutes, but Fallon had left her mind entirely once the blood-fever hit. Once the garou's power had stopped resisting and had submitted to her dark and indomitable will. Once it had granted her, however unwilling, that demigod-like power to its new vessel.

She would never forgive herself for this. She did not deserve Fallon's love. But Fallon was not dead, not yet. Victoria whined again and lapped at her face with a chilling tongue. There was still warmth to her, and gentle breaths still moved her body, and so guilt took a temporary back seat to action. The fire had burnt down to embers... she had to rebuild it. But this form was new and her mind was still reeling, and she simply could not focus on changing back.

Unable to turn back to her true form, she darted to the back of the cabin. She smelled the air for hints of cut wood, and while the forest was oversaturated with pine, she could detect the stale, dead firelogs after a minute. She carried these back to the hearth in her mouth, one by one, each time nudging her lover with a gentle growl, until finally she had enough, simply no way to light it.

She rested as close to Fallon as she could, and for the first time in ages, she cursed what she was. If only she still lived she could warm Fallon with her body. She could grant the garou comfort and healing. As it was, she could only be a cold barrier against an even colder winter's day.
 

Fallon

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Time was all it took. The wound was quick enough to heal, but a few hours of sleep were what her body needed to regenerate the blood that she had lost, or at least enough for her to regain consciousness. Her body was weak and her head pounded, but her eyes slowly rolled open under a furrowed brow that was knit with confusion at the black fur against her skin.

She took in a breath, inhaling the scent, and although it was different she knew it was Victoria. Her heart pounded for a moment of delirium.

What had she done? She was not a lycan, she couldn't turn another with her bite, but none had ever feasted on her blood as Victoria had. Her breaths quickened in panic. She had somehow caused the woman to mutate, altered the very fabric of her being, changed the woman she loved. How permanent would it be?

"Victoria?.. Are you alright?" she croaked out, her fingers splaying and curling in her inky fur..
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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In the time it took for Fallon to wake, Victoria had fallen asleep. Even in her panic, the blonde's warmth comforted her. The gentle rise and fall of her breaths calmed her, and the black wolf found itself drifting off as the sun rose.

Her voice roused her, and Victoria rose onto all fours with a start. She was alive! She looked as if she'd had a very rough night, but she was alive. A whine of elation broke from her fanged lips and she nuzzled and licked at Fallon's face.

She had to get out of this body, but it was hard to focus. Calm, now, she's alright, she thought to herself, letting the red eyes close and focusing on Fallon's scent which was now magnified a thousand fold.

Regaining her composure, she morphed back. It was quicker and cleaner that Fallon's transformations, but then again she had never truly understood her shapeshifting abilities. A rush and a blur of mist and she was herself again, pale as moonlight on the cabin floor.

"Fallon!" It was all she could say. She felt simple, stupid in her relief that Fallon was alright, and she threw her arms around the warm body. "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry."
 
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A ghost of a smile tugged at the corner of her lips to see that although in an entirely different form, for reasons she could not fathom, but other than being a wolf - she was okay. She accepted the nuzzles and licks with a small smirk and a frown in confusion as she ran her bloody fingers into the soft fur.

A dream, it had to be, she was unconscious and yet lucid. This couldn't be real. But as she watched the wolf dissipate in a mist, leaving behind Victoria's naked self, Fallon's frown deepened and her arms wrapped around her. She was real.

"Hey.." she rumbled, fingers sliding through her crimson hair to cradle her head as she hushed her like a child. "Don't apologise, I'm alright.. It was my fault. It was my fault." and honestly, she could hardly say she had regretted it.

"What happened, are you alright?.." she asked, not quite ready to let go just yet.
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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It was not Fallon's fault, of that Victoria was sure, but she didn't bother to correct her. She was too busy enjoying the feeling of warm fingers in her hair and burying her face in Fallon's breast. Just breathe now, she thought to herself, and the redundant action did calm her. Her heartbeat slowed, which she noted with slight surprise was still beating, and quite regularly at that. It had been a large meal, she recalled with a stab of guilt, and her remorse only grew with how bloodied her lover was. She hadn't seen any bite marks, though, that at least had healed.

"What happened, are you alright?.."

She sat up, cross-legged beside Fallon. What had happened? Her memories were fuzzy and frantic, as if she had been more beast than woman. Feeding frenzies were not uncommon... she'd had a minor one the first time she and Fallon had lain together, but last night was more. So much more.

"I... don't know. I am alright I think." She didn't know it, but her eyes had yet to return to their normal red-on-white scheme. They weren't quite the inky black from before, but they were dusky and gray, and her irises still glimmered like dying embers.

"Fallon your blood is... it's incredible!" She could not hide the wonder in her voice, nor did she wish to. "I've never felt so... so..." she clutched at invisible words in the air but none came to her. What she had felt simply defied description. "It did something to me. Something wonderful and terrifying."

She told Fallon everything she could remember. The sensation of feeding on her, the torment of fighting the blood, and the blissful surrender to wildness. "I just... I couldn't control it, Fallon. I'm so sorry." Her dark eyes wandered again over the wolf's bloodied body in shame. The very fact that Fallon was still alive after losing so much was a miracle.

"Are you sure you're alright?" she asked again. She had never felt guilty about feeding on someone before, this was new territory. "Let me get you something. Anything. I'm sure they must have a pantry here."
 

Fallon

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Fallon grimaced as she sat herself up with difficulty. It would take her muscles some time to regain their strength and her skin to warm with colour, but it wasn't of concern. Her concern was still solely fixed on her lover, and her brow furrowed as she noticed that her eyes had not yet returned to their luscious crimson. Fallon's hand reached out to collect the woman's face and she stared into them with far more discomfort than she had when the ruby orbs stared back at her. Her blood had changed something, had triggered a new form and gods knew what else.

Her lips pressed into a thin and thoughtful line as Victoria babbled giddily about her blood, but all Fallon could recall was how violently she had reacted, how difficult it had been to make her stop, and the knowledge that had such a reaction not occurred, her life might not have been as safe in Victoria's hands as she'd believed. Victoria felt terrible enough as it was, and now guilt churned in Fallon's stomach at the thought of the red woman finding her corpse.

"I still don't understand why it changed you like that.." she answered quietly and shook her head as the apologies continued. "I know.. You've nothing to be sorry for." she assured and curled a fiery tress behind the woman's ear.

"Food would be nice.." Fallon smiled weakly..
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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Victoria nodded, leaning her face against Fallon's for another moment before standing up. She didn't feel guiltless, but Fallon had made it clear that her apologies were not necessary. Food then, nurturing, that would help to make up for it.

The thing about being undead for two centuries was that Victoria couldn't remember much of anything about real food. She could smell it nearby: dry and salty, faded odors of meat that had been preserved for emergency rations or simply left over when there was too much to carry back home. It held no appeal for her, but it seemed like the sort of thing Fallon might like.

She collected as much as she could find, wrapping the strips of dried animal flesh in a cloth. She also found an iron pot that was clearly meant to go over the fire, and had managed to sniff out a few potatoes and turnips that had been stored as well.

Victoria remembered that one wasn't supposed to eat raw potatoes, but little else. What did the servants do when mortal guests came to visit the castle? They... they... boiled them! Victoria made a note to pay much closer attention to her own kitchens in the future. For water she made do with snow in the cabin's shade, and placed the kettle with the vegetables to boil before sitting back down with Fallon and presenting the spoils of her miniature "hunt." "Eat," she said eagerly, pushing the cloth with the jerky towards the garou.

She felt rather proud of herself for this meager excuse of a meal. In fact, she was so focused on making sure Fallon felt better that she hadn't even considered how pleasant the fire felt right now. Last night its light had been painful, and it had burned from yards away.

While Fallon ate, she considered her question from earlier. Why had this blood caused such changes?

"When we, vampires, feed on someone... it's like we take a little part of them into ourselves. If they're strong we feel stronger, if they're clever we might feel a little wittier... but it's usually subtle. You..." she paused, looking up and down Fallon once more. "Well... you're the strongest being I've ever fed on." It still felt wrong to talk about, like she'd committed a crime against someone she cared for. "And I think the wolf thing makes sense... kind of."

She frowned, like a scholar considering a difficult equation. "But it fought me. It's like your blood didn't want to be drunk. That's something I've never dealt with before."
 
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Fallon

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Fallon knew that Victoria needed this, that the guilt of almost killing her would be eating away at her and nothing she could say would appease it. And so she let her fuss around as she wrapped herself in a blanket and settled in some cushions by the hearth, a tired smirk on her lips in silent amusement. She doubted the woman was used to such mundane tasks as these, but that she was prepared to do them for her warmed her far more than the fire would.

Fallon was more wolf than elf, her diet was mainly meat, and she barely cooked it if she cooked it at all. Fruits and vegetables and such were not really to her tastes, but a fresh kill would mean hunting, it would mean being left alone, and so Fallon allowed the red woman to find and prepare what she could from the cabin's stores.

She stared at the meat that was pushed toward her and her drowsy features warmed considerably as she reached for some and brought it to her lips to tear a piece and chew. Her body craved the salt, and so it was surprisingly pleasant even without the coppery taste of blood she was used to. "Thank you.." she rumbled appreciatively and ate as she listened to the vampire's explanation with curiousity.

"Hm." she breathed out a quiet huff. "My blood fights everything, it is why I heal so quickly, why I am not prone to infection or disease. Only silver can taint it, and one or two herbs can poison it. It can even be used to heal mortal wounds - though it's not something I brag about, we're hunted enough as it is.." she grumbled.

"I'm sorry if it hurt you.. I wasn't thinking.." she frowned and let out a breathy laugh as her gaze dropped to the floor. Still the thought of it caused a shudder of thrill to dance across her spine and her skin tingled.. "It, wasn't just a bite, to me.. Wolves don't, bare their throats like that to just anyone. In battles for dominance we protect it at all costs. If I have to assert it is how I do so, it forges a bond with the wolf, one they can't break." she tried to explain, but there was a shy awkwardness to her voice.

"What I mean is, I trust you. I've never let anyone..." she cleared her throat.. "It's a bond, to me. That I cannot and will not break. I'm yours. Yours alone."
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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Throughout the course of their conversation Victoria's eyes had continued to lighten, and by the time Fallon had finished eating they were just a light ashen hue where they should have been white, and the fire was again beginning to feel uncomfortably warm.

She listened eagerly to the garou's explanation of her blood. "Pain just makes the pleasure all the greater," she assured her love. That blood would be a source of endless fascination to her, but she remembered with spikes of hot anger the horrible burns that silver had left on that perfect body when Fallon described her weaknesses.

The significance of the bite had not occurred to her until Fallon explained, and Victoria felt a deep lurch in her chest. Trust was not something that vampires tended to deal in. Betrayal was all but expected sooner or later, and alliances were held by swords, gold, and favors. She felt undeserving of such devotion. Had she bewitched Fallon by mistake? Had her bite enthralled the woman without her knowledge? It was ridiculous to consider, but doubts did not partner with reason.

She wanted to return the sentiment, to proclaim that she could not envision existing apart from this wolf, but the words were alien and unpracticed, so instead she leaned in to kiss Fallon tenderly. She let her fingers lie delicately on the place where she had bitten, relieved that the wound had healed, but feeling the place that meant so much now. Maybe Fallon would feel her thoughts through her lips.

"I'm yours. Yours alone."

"Yes, you are," she replied with a playful smirk as their lips grazed. And then, more seriously, "I will burn before I betray that trust."

She allowed Fallon time to recover, and remained near her. The cold cabin air was nothing to her, and though she edged away from the fire as Fallon's blood wore off she moved closer and closer to the woman. At last, when the meal was finished, she brought up the subject she knew would need to be broached sooner or later.

"So... speaking of blood..." she started cautiously. "...I need to learn more about mine. My family." She bit her lip, hoping this change of subject would not pain Fallon. Her own jealousy aside, she knew how painful it may be for Fallon to think of Olivia.
 

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A breathy laugh tumbled from Fallon's lips, her brow lifting as she gave a somewhat shy nod in agreement. The pain had been...something. Something she hadn't experienced before, but something she had certainly drawn pleasure from. She felt her cheeks warm a little, and she inwardly cursed herself for how ridiculously meek she must have seemed.

The trust she had placed in Victoria did not come without her own doubts. She thought back to her pack's concerns, of how weak she'd become without the red woman's presence, of how reliant she'd felt, of the pain the distance had caused her and the desires that tortured her each night. Perhaps there was something deeper at play, perhaps wolves really did attach themselves to certain people unwittingly. She had always feared losing Olivia and the woman's death had broken her, but she had stayed strong for her pack and they had helped her back to her feet, and she had mourned for so long but she had made it through the suffering. The thought of losing Victoria felt, impossible. As though her life was shared, her heart and soul split in two. That she was simply unable to exist without her. It was frightening and exhilarative all at once.

Her silver orbs affixed themselves to Victoria's face and followed her as she leaned in close, and Fallon drew in a slow and deep breath as she returned the tender kiss. There was a brief, habitual reflex of tension as she felt the cold fingertips against her throat, but she quickly eased and leaned into them as though to emphasise her point.

Yes, you are..I will burn before I betray that trust.

The words struck like a flint on her tongue and sparked an answering light behind her ribs. Her fingers brushed across her face and laced into her hair to grip it gently as she pressed their foreheads together. It was gratifying to belong to someone again, and she'd never belonged to anyone as much as she belonged to this woman and her heart swelled with overwhelming happiness so much that it ached in her chest.

Fallon could tell that there was some hesitance in Victoria broaching the subject of her family, but she offered a soft smile.. "Yes, I'm sorry..I want to help." she nodded.
 
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Victoria O'Connor

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Victoria noticeably relaxed at Fallon's words. She had been afraid to bring up that past and maybe ruin a night that they had just barely managed to keep from falling apart. "Thank you," she held tighter to the woman for a moment, and then sat up, looking her over for perhaps the hundredth time that morning.

Her eyes now were nearly back to their normal hue, and she had slid up to Fallon's side to escape the ever-more-painful flames in the hearth. The tiny slivers of sunlight that snuck through the cabin's drapes were white-hot in her periphery, and she clung fast to her protector. Never mind the events of last night, Fallon would always easily fit that role in her heart.

"The snows will soon make it impossible to go south. I would gladly endure the winter here, by your side, but..." her voice trailed off. She hadn't relied on humans in so long, but now that she needed to speak to them they seemed like the most fragile beings in the world. She wasn't prepared to gamble her bloodline on the hope that one woman and her children would survive the winter. "...but I must find Evangeline."

Now the next question, and the next moment of sickness as she waited for Fallon to say "no."

"I was hoping you could come with me...?"

Her own mouth felt like a stranger, meek and imploring. Lady O'Connor did not ask for anything. She gave orders, and she was obeyed. But Victoria did not feel very noble right now. Right now she knew the journey was far too long and too distant for Fallon to possibly agree to. It didn't keep her from hoping.
 
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"Hm." Fallon smiled as Victoria held on to her, her grip vice-like and by no means unwelcome. She reached gingerly to tip the kettle of water over the flames to extinguish them, and she held her close away from the shafts of sunlight that speckled the bloodied floor. Fallon nuzzled her way into the crook of Victoria's neck as she spoke, unable to resist the soft kisses that she pressed against the cool, alabaster skin, the vibrations of her voice ticklish against her lips.

"I was hoping you could come with me...?"

Fallon pulled back, stunned and silent, and could only stare at her with a glimmer of pride. It must have taken a lot for Victoria to ask what she did; this strong, independent, fierce woman who never had to ask for anything. And yet, she asked for her.

Her pack. She had to return to them at some point, and she worried that the further she travelled from them, the more difficult it would be to return. But she was not ready to leave Victoria's side.. would she ever be? The thought tied up like a knot in her chest. Her pack would manage without her, they were strong enough and there were leaders among them. The thought of just how well they'd cope without her was both comforting and heartbreaking all at once, and yet it couldn't compare to the pain conjured by the thought of being without Victoria.

"Yes." she answered sharply. "Yes of course I'll come with you. Anywhere." her head shook and she laughed softly as she drew the vampire's mouth against her own.
 
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Fallon recoiled from her question, and Victoria knew she had asked too much. So stupid, she thought, to think this spirit of winter would ever wish to leave with her. She only hoped she had not offended Fallon, had not presumed too much by asking, had not-

"Yes."

Oh.

"Yes of course I'll come with you. Anywhere."

Dumbstruck by the kiss, and then elation like she'd never felt. She tackled Fallon to the ground in a giddy embrace and peppered kiss after kiss onto her scalding skin.

~*~

Victoria had a new energy that day. Her body had been bolstered by Fallon's blood, and her spirit by Fallon's devotion. She talked as she moved about the cabin, gathering what she could and setting supplies by the front door in some odd semblance of preparation. She had servants to do this normally, so it was not an efficient nor effective process, but she had found more potatoes and dried meats and a few blankets. She had also raided every closet in the cabin and found garments that she deemed acceptable.

Clean(ish) shirts, a smart hunting vest, and a thick overcoat set above trousers and high boots. It was all meant for the men that frequented this lodge, but they fit Victoria well enough. She had pulled out a few outfits she thought suitable for Fallon as well, though she wasn't quite sure which aesthetic would suit the wild woman best. Better to let her decide from a few options then.

~*~

The journey was long. The winter snows had indeed begun in earnest as the pair slipped through the jagged valleys and descended. Frost followed them, lapping at their heels, but always they kept just ahead of it. They walked together by night, and rested by day. It was slow going at first. Fallon could easily outpace her, and while taking to the air as a bat was faster than walking it tired her much more quickly.

As the journey wore on, and the pair spent day and day together, huddled in whatever shelter they could find, Victoria started to experiment. Just a little of Fallon's blood at first, barely more than an ounce. It was enough to make her muscles surge and set her passions aflame, but little else. As her tolerance grew, and as her control became more trustworthy, she took a bit more. With Fallon's permission, she finally found a sweet spot between ineffectual stimulant and uncontrollable indulgence.

They ran together as wolves after that. Victoria found that she could sustain the form in proportion to how much of Fallon's blood she took, using it like a fuel for the transformation. Additionally, she found that flames bothered her less and that the sneaking glow of dawn no longer blinded her. Such effects were transient, and sooner or later she returned to her normal nightstalking self.

The portal stone cut their journey significantly, and before the harshest snows began to fall Victoria and Fallon were overlooking Alliria's imposing skyline in the distance, with the Landholm estate between them and the rising moon.

Victoria, as always, was unchanged by time. Perhaps she was a little dirtier than usual, her hair a little more unkempt, but she remained the frozen image of her last living moment. She took Fallon's hand in hers. Time held little meaning for her, but it still felt very odd to be back in civilization after trekking the wilds for months. A cool breeze blew, but it felt warm next to the mountain air they had left.
 
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Fallon adored seeing her like this. She was pure and passionate freedom. Every day she spent with her, they got to know each other a little better, explored one another a more, and each hour she found herself even more blissfully lost than the last.. She'd never been so smitten by another being in her life, never been so addicted to anything. But Her.. Running with her.. Sharing her very life with her. Fallon's heart was fit to burst.

They loved like flames, all the more alive, all the more powerful for being closer together; it was then they shone brighter, both within and upon one another, becoming a source of light and love and showering sparks of chaos into the dark. Together, they were both a beautiful dream and a catastrophic nightmare.

It was an easy thing to forget about home when she felt such excitement about where she was going, where she was each moment she was with her. She loved her pack, missed each and every one of them, but all she could conjure was the memory of how miserable she'd felt, like her very soul had been torn out of her. Here with her, no matter how cold or treacherous their paths, there wasn't a day that passed when she didn't feel truly happy.

She squeezed at the red woman's hand as she stood on the hill beside her, in her hunter's shirt and wool breeches, dampened several times over with snow and dirtied more times by being tossed aside in favour of bare skin or fur. A breath filled her lungs, and she let it out in a silvery plume on the freezing night air as she cast her gaze across the landscape, the moonlight travelling across the land with a graceful ease, lightening their path ahead.

A bright smile broke through her lips as she turned to pull Victoria across her chest to settle her chin on her shoulder, an arm slung possessively across her stomach. "Welcome home, Lady O'Connor." she purred by her ear with a quiet laugh under her breath.
 
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Victoria's breath did not fog the air, and she looked on the distant lights through glittering scarlet eyes. Fallon's hold was bracing and she needed that now. Now that she was so close, now that their journey was nearing its end. She felt nervous, anxious, and excited all at once, and perhaps if her body held a bit more warmth it would have trembled.

She lifted a hand to Fallon's hair, the other clasped firmly around the hand on her middle. Her mouth felt dry, and she swallowed in a half-remembered instinct.

"Welcome home, Lady O'Connor."

As much as her insides purred at Fallon addressing her by her title, she could only smile weakly. Home. Family. These things were within her grasp now, just a short walk away. With the excitement came fear. What if something happened? What if Evangeline had moved, or worse? What if she hated Victoria for her status and imposition? What if she found out what she was?

It was too late to worry, and she steeled herself to put one foot in front of the other. "Thank you for coming with me," it had been so long since she had felt this sort of trepidation, but her wolf helped to push it away.

Her wolf. She kept having to remind herself how insane those words were. It felt so natural, so right, and the past months had been bliss. How peculiar to think that their love was an anomaly.


Landholm was a modest hamlet. There was a manor atop a low hill with a small scattering of homes and businesses around it. A blacksmith, a bakery, and perhaps a few other services. Nothing that would garner attention from anyone of significance, but enough to simply exist.

There were no gates, just a dirt road that curved gently from the fields. Two guards stood half-asleep at its border, and they stood a little straighter as the women approached.