Note to the reader:

Please keep in mind that these characters are deeply twisted - both are vampires and they are dealing with a very fucked up situation in the worst way possible. I consider myself a well-informed fan of the BDSM scene, and I know that what these two are doing and, more to the point, why they are doing is not correct, nor is it safe. To go into a D/S scene to exorcise anger, or to force a power-issue is a quick way to summon demons. I know this, with luck you know this, but these poor, stupid, characters didn't. Please don't send me angry e-mails telling me that I am presenting a bad/inaccurate/wantonly misleading aspect of D/S play, because I know already. It's part of the piece. Okay, now get reading...

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"Dearheart, when you said that you were abdicating, before.... That wasn't you?...That was Gratiano, still in control...wasn't it?" Rachel asked, slightly worried.

Cash raised an eyebrow and looked at her with a pain-filled, almost dangerous glance before looking down and away. "Yes, of course it was..." he said. "We won't talk about that anymore."

Rachel suppressed a curse. Mentioning that incident was a stupid mistake. She had forgotten that what had been weeks ago for her, had only been a few days for her husband. Both Cash and Rachel had steered clear of the subject since her return, understanding that the wounds would be slow to heal for them both. She had forgotten just how fresh they were in Cash's mind.

Cash sensed Rachel's uneasiness at his reaction. He wanted to reassure her, so he slipped his arms around her from behind and gave her a hug. He liked the way that felt, holding her tight the feel of her body next to his. He began to blow in her ear. "I'm sorry, hon. Everything's going to be fine from now on...you'll see."

Rachel had her doubts about the ability to keep such a promise, but not of the sincerity of Cash's words. She arched back slightly, nuzzling her head against the crook of his neck, enjoying his busy hands as they moved over her breasts and abdomen.

"Rachel?..." Cash asked," do you trust me." He punctuated this question with a sharp nip to Rachel's neck, and she shivered in response.

Rachel hesitated. This wasn't an easy question. "Yes, I trust you." She said, finally.

Cash turned Rachel around so that she was facing him and kissed her. "Good", he said. "Come with me..."

He led Rachel upstairs to the master bedroom, pausing to lock the door after they both had entered. Rachel wondered at that, but said nothing.

Cash then moved close to Rachel and reached out to feel the cloth of her turtle-neck shirt. He played with it, rubbing the fabric between his fingers. "You've always looked good in black." He smiled. He ran his hand up along Rachel’s back and into her hair, grasping it firmly, and pulled her close to kiss her. "Undress... ", he told her, and moved away slightly. His tone was loving, but the was a firm edge to it, one that Rachel seemed to find both disturbing and exciting at the same time.

Rachel complied, slowly removing her shirt and letting it fall to the floor as Cash watched her. She drew this out, removing the rest of her clothing with a playful languidity.

Cash stared at her, a greedy look in his eyes, which flickered into concern. "I was afraid that I was going to lose you." He reached out and grasped her by the shoulders. "I need to know that the trust that we had between us is still there. Will you show me how much you trust me, my love?"

"How?" Rachel asked simply. She was somewhat nervous, reminding herself that for Cash it had only been a matter of days since their horrifying wedding night. Could she even be sure that Gratiano had been banished?

But if she were to voice that doubt and be wrong...She sighed, internally, and realized she would have to give way to Cassius, and just try to look out for her own safety.

Cash stroked her cheek gently. "Just do what I say, and have faith in me." He kissed her, eliciting a moment's desire amongst the tension. "Can you do that for me?"

Rachel's reply was quiet. "Of course."

Cash smiled, and they kissed again, pushing against each other. "Good." he nodded. "I want you to kneel on the bed, and face me." he told her.

Rachel raised an eyebrow, but complied.

Cash stood about two feet from the bed, still clothed. He looked Rachel up and down, a proud smile upon his face. "My dear, Rachel." He said lightly. "My wife. You're mine now, aren't you my love?"

Rachel said nothing, looking down at her hands in her lap. She didn't like this turn of conversation. Cash frowned.

"No sweetheart. Look at me." he said firmly.

Rachel remembered Gratiano and shuddered. "Oh no, little bird, keep

looking at me..." . She reluctantly looked up and said, "I'm not a thing, Cash."

Cash shook his head. "Darling, I never said that...trust, remember?"

Rachel suddenly realized where this was going, and the potentially destructiveness of complaint. Her shoulders slumped slightly.

"Yes, I'm sorry." she apologized.

"Don't be sorry." Cash said, still firm. "Answer me."

Rachel stared at him for a moment, confused and then remembered. "Yes, Cash, I'm yours." she told him, almost sad.

Cash looked concerned. "Why so sad about that, Rachel?" he moved close to her, his hands on her shoulders, kissed her neck, shoulders, breasts. "You're mine, and I'm yours, forever and always. That doesn't make you feel happy?" He seemed genuinely concerned, which relieved Rachel slightly.

She took a deep breath. "Being yours is a fine thing." She admitted. "It's just that in the past

few months...I've been nothing more than a thing to be had, by too many people." She paused and decided that this was a useless topic. "I'm sorry, I'm burdening you with my emotional baggage."

Cash's tone was intent, almost angry against her skin. "Rachel, you will never be a thing to me. You should know better than that." He teased her nipple, causing a tingle of warmth, and then bit it firmly.

Rachel gasped, but did not move away.

"I just want you to know how good it makes me feel that I have you." Cash said, licking the minor wound on Rachel's skin. "That we're together. That you'll do anything for me." He straightened , pulled Rachel close by her hair, until they were scant inches apart. Rachel wanted to close that distance, but she could not dare move. "You will do anything for me, won't you dearest?" he asked, lightly.

Rachel's reply was hesitant. "Of course." What is he going to ask me to do? She wondered.

Cash smiled and kissed her. Rachel savored the moment but Cash finally pushed her back. "Good." he commented. "Lie down on the bed and close your eyes." he told her, suddenly abrupt.

Rachel's nervousness returned, but she obeyed. A few moments later, she felt Cash slide on top of her. He was still fully clothed and she could feel the rough fabric of his shirt against her nipples. The irritation was minor, and the sensuous friction made Rachel sigh in light pleasure.

She could also feel his erection through his clothes - a state which both excited and worried her.

Rachel felt Cash slip something over her head, a blindfold. Momentarily panicked, she tried to sit up, and reached to pull the blindfold away from her. Cash caught her reaching hand. "Rachel…trust me." It was said almost as a warning.

Rachel frowned slightly, allowed Cash to gently push her back down to the bed. "Yes, but…I can't help this...I'm sorry." She said reluctantly, and closed her eyes. Her mind was a whirl. He must know how this makes me feel - which is why he wants me to trust him through this. But how can I, after what happened? Rachel tried to calm down, and reminded herself that this really was Cash and he loved her.

Cash saw her reach some kind of internal decision, and relax beneath him. "Now relax...this will help you. I want you to think of a word, and if this gets too much for you, you will say that word and I will stop.

Understand?" he was speaking slowly, but Rachel knew him well enough to hear the irritation in his voice, or was it impatience?

"Alright." Rachel nodded. "That word is 'red'."

"Good." He spoke softly, but firmly. "I told you that I would never let those things happen to you again. I will make sure that you are safe. You will trust me on this. You have to."

Rachel was doubtful. How can he make sure I'm safe? He hasn't done a great job so far... "Alright." She conceded, still reluctant to believe his dedicated tone, but wanting to.

"I know that you hate restraints... so we won't use them..." he whispered in Rachel's ear, apparently oblivious to the alarm that the mention of restraints caused her. "See how I take care of you, my love?" He bit her earlobe, causing her to gasp quietly. "You would probably just break them anyway. But that doesn't matter because you're not going to move unless I ask you to, are you darling?"

Rachel felt alarm bells ringing inside her mind, tempered by the constant mantra: this is Cash, you should trust him. This is your husband, you have to trust him… It took a measure of effort, but she finally nodded her agreement.

Cash tried to reassure her. "Remember sweetheart. I gave a measure of control as well. Remember your word. Now relax." Rachel shook off memories of a similar order given in a Victorian styled living room in Toronto several years ago, and carefully tried to shed the tension from her body. Despite her gnawing worries, she was curious and somewhat titillated by this situation.

Cash watched lustfully as Rachel settled down and tried to remain composed. He could still sense her tension. He felt a guilty pleasure at the though of the nervous adrenal rush that he must be causing Rachel, with this self-imposed captivity.

Still, nervous as she was, Rachel could have stopped this at any time, and had not done so. Within the privacy of her own mind, Rachel admitted that she did trust Cash enough to allow this situation, and perhaps even enjoy it a little. The lingering pleasure of his earlier contact warmed her.

Cash ran his nails along the side of her neck, raising red lines that quickly faded. "Better?"

Rachel shivered, the sudden rush of pleasure accompanying this minor injury almost surprising her. She turned into his hand and had some difficulty finding her voice. "Yes."

"Yes...my lord." Cash corrected her quietly. He kissed the crook of her neck, and then bit, hard enough to break the skin. The unexpected welter of sensation and realization - pleasure drowning the sharp injury, and a sudden understanding of this game - almost overwhelmed Rachel. She gasped in pain and growing desire. "I'm sorry… my lord..." Saying this felt slightly ridiculous, but also very fitting.

After all, he seemed to be in charge.

Cash scratched Rachel's side with sharp nails. "Does this feel good?" he asked bluntly.

Rachel winced beneath the blindfold. "Not good...but necessary..." she half-lied.

"Necessary? Yes...but there's nothing wrong with enjoying it." His tone was oddly encouraging.

Rachel's struggle was strictly internal as she fought to obey Cash's restriction. "This is necessary. Anything else is...incidental." she admitted.

Cash's mouth became a thin line. She never had any trouble enjoying it with Viersan though, did she? No... He pushed that though out of his head as quickly as it came. He could feel that Rachel was enjoying this, even if her pride wouldn't let her admit it. Cash smiled at the challenge. We have time, he thought.

Cash moved away from the bed and stood in silence for a moment, watching Rachel. She lay very still, and he could see her growing worry that he might have left. Finally, she quietly asked. "My lord?"

Cash smiled. "I'm here. I won't leave you. Trust, Rachel." Rachel strained to hear him, noticed the sound of what may have been clothes falling to the floor, or maybe not. She couldn't see what was happening, and decided that it would be inappropriate to ask.

Rachel was startled by Cash's mouth upon the sole of her left foot. Cash carefully licked and sucked each of her toes, repressing a smile at Rachel's twitching reaction, suddenly suppressed. She tried to hold herself still, while enjoying the very unique sensation of motile dampness upon such a sensitive area. That pleasure was contradicted by the fact that she could feel claws upon Cash's left - is it his left? Yes - hand, lightly tracing a line from her ankle, to knee and higher.

Pleasure and panic fought for dominance, and neither won. Rachel clamped down upon her urge to squirm and clenched at the bedsheets beneath her hands.

Cash spoke quietly. "You did some things that hurt." He licked the back of her knee. "We both did." He admitted. "We both feel that something needs to be resolved." He bit her inner thigh, felt Rachel tense and slowly relax. "That's why this is a necessity."

Rachel's thoughts were rapidly scattering beyond her ability to keep up with Cash's conversation. "Yes, my lord." She hoped that would suffice, because it was the only thing she could think of to say.

"Our problem before was a lack of communication." Cash continued. "I want you tell me your wants... your desires." She felt his unclawed hand stroking her thigh. "I want to know you..." His fingers entered her, one firmly massaged her clitoris. "…inside and out." Cash's touch was deft and as pleasing as it had always been, before. Rachel wanted to move against him, as she would in their other encounters, but she couldn't risk disobedience at this exquisite moment.

Rachel gasped for breath that she didn't need. "All I want, is here...my lord..." She moaned at the fingers inside her, wanting to encourage him.

"Tell me what you want me to do for you." He moved on top of her now, his face next to hers. She could feel his words on her cheek. "Tell me what you want me to do to you."

Rachel's reply was faint. She was so dizzy, so aroused, that she could barely hear him "Please, my lord, don't stop touching me...I want to feel you next to me...within me..." Talking of this desire was almost

embarrassing, but also a gratifying release.

"Please? That's good. But not just yet, darling. I know that you must still be angry with me as well. You want to hurt me back, don't you?"

Rachel moaned, her control definitely starting to crumble. "No, no...I can't..." What she couldn't do wasn't entirely clear.

"Don't you?" he asked, firmly, still touching her with gentle force.

"No!" Rachel insisted. Why on earth would she want to hurt him? It wasn't his fault. Belatedly, she added. "My lord."

"Alright." He seemed doubtful. "We won't force the issue." He kissed and bit her neck again. "But when I tell you something, you will listen to me next time. Understand?"

Rachel squealed and just barely pushed against Cash's biting mouth. "Yes, sir" She clearly felt the sheets under her hands begin to tear.

Cash moved to her breast again, bit her nipple, and lightly raked his claws along her arm. The skin didn't quite break, but it was enough to cause Rachel to almost twist away. Rachel cried out, then bit her lip so hard it bled, during an involuntary moment of struggle. "I'm sorry, my lord." She apologized quickly. She didn't know how much more of this she could take.

Mirroring that sentiment, Cash lifted Rachel and turned her over, so that she rested on all fours. Rachel could feel the heat of the recent hunt on Cash's body as he began to press up against her from behind. Aroused, she moved her hips back towards him, impatient to feel him inside her. She was rewarded by a hard swat to her ass from the flat of Cash's hand. She gasped at the tingling, warm feeling, which accompanied the stinging sensation on her backside, and out of anticipatory disappointment.

"I didn't say that you could move yet, darling." He said, teasing her. He rubbed lightly on the sore part of her bottom. "I know that you just want to please me though...and I want you to be pleased as well." Rachel could hear the tension in Cash's voice. She knew that he wanted her just as badly as she wanted him at this moment. He made her wait for as long as he could bear it.

Finally, "You can move now."

Sighing in relief, Rachel leaned up against Cash, gently rubbing her ass against his erection, wanting him badly, but not trusting her ability to stay balanced, even on all fours, so distracted she was.

Cash plunged his hands into Rachel's hair and grabbed, pulling back while at the same time thrusting his hips forward. Rachel moaned with a mixture of pain and delight, and she pushed back against Cash as she felt his cock slide into her. The moment of tight pain of penetration caused her to tear at the bedsheets even more, but neither of them cared. Cash had maintained his grip on Rachel’s hair and she felt her head being pulled backwards painfully, in synch with the force of each rhythmic thrust.

Rachel cried out in definite pain for a moment, moving against Cash and then stopping. "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry.." she gasped, hoping he didn't ask which particular sin she repented.

Cash did not need to ask what Rachel was being penitent about, he believed he knew, and the suddenness of her confession shook him.

Cash loosened his grip upon her for a moment, worried that he had pushed things too far. Then he realized that she had not used the safety word and was, even now, lightly pulling against the hand in her hair. He gently scratched her leg with his clawed hand and breathed into her ear.

"You like this don't you darling?" It was a question he had been meaning to ask for some time.

Her answer came from between teeth clenched from the conflict of embarrassment and passion. Rachel moved slowly against him, shivering at the feeling of his cock inside her. "Yes, my lord...please..." she moved again, wanting him to continue.

Cash tightened his grip on Rachel’s hair, maintaining his steady rhythm as he entered her again and again. He was enjoying the cries of pleasure from his wife almost as much as the sensation of her tight muscles contracting against the length of his shaft with every thrust of his hips.

A shiver ran down his spine as he came. Several deep-breathed sighs escaped his lips as he ejaculated, his passion heightened by the incredibly sensitive feeling that follows, as he kept up the rhythm.

Rachel's sighs became more intense, she pushed against Cash's body with more force, moaning with pleasure as the orgasm overtook her body. Cash again enjoyed the sensation of Rachel's pussy constricting with the involuntary convulsions that came with each wave of ecstasy. She said something in Arabic, that he didn't understand, but he doubted it mattered just then. He slowed only as the last shivers of pleasure were leaving Rachel's body.

Cash remained bent over Rachel, smiling. He hugged her tightly and removed her blindfold. "You love me, don't you darling?" he asked, smug and sated.

"Yes." Rachel's voice was unsteady, but not uncertain.

"You trust me?"

I don't see much choice, Rachel thought, but what was it I told Paul 'One good fuck isn't going to change my mind, or even a dozen'? She sighed, inside. Hypocrite... "Of course."

The questions followed one after another. "And what would you do for me?"

"Anything you want me to." Rachel realized.

"I know." Cash nodded, glad that she could tell him that, and kissed her gently. "and I love you."