Sunday, June 9, 2013

The Smell of Rain by Debra Doggett

William seduces Hannah in Debra Doggett's erotic vampire story.

William lifted the rattling window and let the cool breeze waft over him. He knew his body formed a dark silhouette through the thin lace curtain but the hunger craved satisfaction. Forced for so many nights to wait, it clawed at him now with a ferocity bent on release.

He'd given up a great deal for this night and nothing would stop him from seeing it through. Confinement never suited him and the cramped, shabby room suited him even less. Whitson's Inn was clean but basic, not at all the elegant quarters he generally preferred. But Abigail Whitson never heard a thing that moved around her once she'd taken to her bed and that benefit, together with the isolation of the boarding house at the far end of town, brought him here each time he came to Trudeau.

William smelled the rain in the air as he noted the tempest to the west that waited with an impatient hum, rumbling clouds, gray and splotchy against the stormy sky. The threat of it comforted him. Between the night and the storm, perhaps no one would be about when he left town. No questions to answer, no conversation to be remembered at a later inopportune moment. All gone according to plan with the promised rain to remove any trace of his leaving. As he stared out into the empty streets, William's sharpened gaze caught the quiet shadow of steam rising from the dampened ground, bringing a scent with it he'd nearly forgotten, the smell of earth, of fertility. The smell of the living.

"What are you looking at?"

He turned to the sleepy voice, his gaze capturing for his memory the satisfied look of sex still in her green eyes. Mine for always. What a picture she made. Thick black curls tumbled around her bare shoulders, the ebony waves shiny against the ivory of her skin. From across the room the sound of her heartbeat pulsed against his head and his mouth watered at the thickness of blood as it raced through her. He smiled.

"You're letting in the rain, William. Close the window."

She yawned and tugged the thick quilt up around her, careful to keep the soft material under and not over her lush breasts. A tiny smile played at her lips as she smoothed the covering down across her thighs, knowing his gaze followed the calculated movement. He stepped toward the bed to capture her hands and she offered no resistance as he pushed her back against the faded linen sheets.

"The rain won't hurt you, Hannah." He whispered the words close to her ear, rewarded by a tiny shiver across her skin. "You're safe inside. With me."

Outside the wind picked up and a streak of lightning flashed across the starry canvas around them. The loose panes of glass in the open window shook with the rising storm. She glanced over at it as her shiver deepened and he chuckled. With a pout, she smacked his chest.

"I'm not scared of the rain, William. You don't have to treat me like a baby."

He smiled at the lie as he pulled the quilt away and gazed down at her. Her body stirred him as nothing had in a very long time. Days on end he had walked, town to town, place to place, a deep and lonely emptiness robbing him of purpose, even of need, robbed him until he thought he would go mad. Then there she stood, his pot of gold in a filthy earthen package.

Black curls and tattered lace. What a find she was. And underneath the faded bloom a woman to match him in desire. He wanted her more now than the day he picked her up at Lovell's train station, dirty, hungry and out of hope. Much as he himself had been. It hadn't taken him long to coax her back into the sooty diner for a meal he gladly paid for. She'd eaten as if the food were the first she'd ever had.

Regular meals since had filled out her thin frame, giving lushness to the curves hidden that day under the unkempt yellow gown. He'd fed more than her stomach at the diner and she had fed him in the days since, giving him back the purpose that had deserted him for so long. And the hunger. She had saved him from the loneliness inside. And now he would save her.

William tilted her head to give him better access to her pale neckline then licked his way down to her shoulder. Her hands dropped to her side as his fingers roamed her ivory skin, a small moan escaping her pursed lips in spite of her pout. He whispered his promise along the warmth of her skin.

"Ah, Hannah, there's no worry of that. I've no intention of treating you anything like a child, not this night."

She tossed the black curls from her face and gave him another pout. "It's Helena."

"Helena?"

"I've picked it as my new name. You said a new name for a new life."

"And you've chosen Helena?" A smile twisted the corners of his mouth as he pressed his lips back to her delicate skin.

Her arms slid from around his neck and he sighed. Still pouting. Though on the whole he didn't mind her contrary nature, it was at times distracting. She poked him with a slender finger.

"Helena has class. It's a name for a lady. And I'm going to be a lady now, with a fine house in town and fine clothes." She stared at him from under her dark lashes. "And a fine husband."

"And Hannah couldn't be a lady?"

"Hannah's a name for a maid." She rolled her eyes, disgust plain in her voice. "Helena's a name for a lady. My name now." Beneath him her body shifted tight and low against his need in the way she knew would stir him. "I mean, I belong to a gentleman, don't I? That makes me a lady. Your lady." She gave him a shy smile. "After all, you gave me your heart." Her hand eased from under the quilt, displaying the laced paper heart still clutched in it. "You're mine now, right?"

The words carried both question and demand. He looked down at her and nodded.

"Yes, my dear Han... Helena. My lady." Mine in all ways.

"It's a pretty thing." One hand smoothed out the paper as another traced the curved pattern of the heart. "You gave me your heart." Her eyes lit with wonder as she stared from the Valentine to her lover.

William took the paper heart and laid it against her chest, watching her eyes as he stretched over her. "I've other things to give you, Hannah."

"I know," she giggled. "And it's Helena."

"Yes, forgive me. Helena. I've other gifts for you, Helena."

His lips returned to her neck. For an instant he hovered in the soft curve of it, savoring the steady beat beneath his lips. He could do it now, no more waiting. The frantic refrain beat against the walls of his mind. It will be over tonight anyway. Why not now?

Outside the wind roared its way past the open window, bringing the sound of the rain to pound against his fragile control. Within his head the beast raged as his lips touched the steady pulse beneath her fragile skin. One more time. Touch her warmth one more time before...

Lightning flashed again followed by a rumble of thunder. Hannah curled against him, burying her face in his neck. He chuckled.

"It would seem the gods are celebrating with us."

"Or He's angry with me."

He leaned back to peer at her face. "Ah, yes, mustn't forget your place, your station, so to speak. So you think your oh so monogamous god doesn't want you to be my lady?"

"Don't talk like that." She pulled her hands back from his face. "You scare me when you talk like that."

"You scare too easily. It's a habit I shall have to work harder to break you of."

The rain pounded against the flimsy structure, tore at the slated roof holding the wind and water out. Through the shaking glass the storm's rage highlighted the bent trees and starless sky. Hannah closed her eyes and curled away from the sight, pulling him tighter against her. When she looked up at him with those deep jade pools filled with the fear running through her, William sighed. He reminded himself the change would take time. And patience.

"It scares me. It's always scared me."

He made the effort to gentle his voice as he stared down at her. "It? What is so frightening, Hannah?"

William let the sound of his voice play across her skin and hoped it would soothe her, bring her focus back to the two of them. Always the guilt. How he detested the impingement of that deep-set morality upon the enjoyment of life.

"The night. The dark. All of it. I don't see how you do it, William."

"How I do what, Hannah?"

"Helena. How you go about in the night all the time. I've always been scared of the dark."

"Again part of your fixation with the moral compass instilled in you."

"What?"

"Don't be afraid of the dark, Hannah."

"Helena."

"Helena, then."

"Are you not afraid of it?"

How could one be afraid of what they own, of where they belong? "No, the darkness does not frighten me."

"Why must you always travel at night?"

"I prefer it. But now," He flipped her over as her mouth opened to speak again, pressing her soft cheek to the feather pillow. "I prefer to see another side of you."

She stiffened for a moment then relaxed as he stroked her in earnest. It never ceased to amaze him how easily she gave in to her sensual side. He slipped inside her, filling both of them with his lust. The refrain of her heartbeat thrummed in his head as he pounded in and out of her, matching the sound to the rhythm of their joining.

"William!"

He smiled, knowing her meaning and knowing his own. Beneath him she writhed, all of her body building toward the moment he needed. The moment he craved. The beast within him sighed as his mouth touched the delicate skin of her neck, licking the spot where his other desire lay. She moaned, too caught in the throes of her own pleasure to fear the light in his eyes even had she seen it.

Outside the rain tore at the roof, heavier and faster now, wind and water soaking the world around it. A torrent washing away what was. A jagged edge of lightning streaked the night sky and thunder shook the ground. She startled beneath him, caught between desire and fear.

"Shhh. Don't be afraid, Hannah."

She slid away from him, her fingers clutching at the cover as if to hide. He tugged it off and used his hands to soothe her then stroke her back to a fevered pitch.

"Give me your need, Hannah, and I will fill it. Leave the rest behind."

Beneath him, turning to clutch him tight against her, she buried her face in his neck. "I need you, William. I do need you so very much. Don't ever leave me."

"Never, love. We'll be together always, I promise."

He shoved himself into her, filling them both with lust and need. Her breasts rubbed his chest as she rose to lock her arms tighter around his neck as he pounded into her. The nearness of her, the sound of her lifebeat inside his head, drove him to a height he'd never found before. With an oath, he lowered his lips to her neck.

"William! Please!"

It was all the permission he needed, all the pull he could stand. His tongue stroked the spot, careful slow licks of pleasure spurring his blood as his body tightened around her, squeezed them both into a vise of desire. Outside the rain howled, wind and light a vivid backdrop to the play of flesh on flesh. Only a moment. Fever built inside him, racing need drawing hunger to the forefront. He leaned over and put his mouth on her as she gasped out her pleasure.

Take! Now!

William sucked the delicate skin between his lips, paused to let the drumming beat drive him as he pierced the thin fold separating his mouth from his desire. Beneath him she writhed, caught in the first throes of orgasm. Her eyes opened, dazed and confused and for a brief instant she struggled, pleasure warring with pain as she tried to ease back from him. Her hands moved as if to push him away and he whispered against her, soothing sounds made from the depths of his throat as he sank deeper below her skin. Unsure, she let her hands fall to his arms, holding him in a weak grip. He lifted her, pulling her tight against him as he tasted the first drops.

Satisfaction drowned out the wind and rain as it roared through him. He'd forgotten how good the hunger could feel. How deep the enjoyment of sating it. He felt like throwing his head back, shouting his triumph. Instead, he locked his lips around the open marks, thrilling to the warm feel of the liquid draining down into him. So much warmth. So much life.

The room filled with the taste of it, every noise, every scent carving its way into the deepest parts of him. His body spasmed with pleasure, fed itself on the heightened sensations. Beneath him, Hannah moved, twisted, uncertain noises fighting their way out of her wounded throat as he lost the control he'd worked so hard to keep. Moments passed as he fed the hunger inside him, lost himself in the slick feel of blood on his lips, his tongue, sating the beast that roared. Not until she stilled, soft hands limp by her side, did he pull himself back to the reality of the stuffy room, the creaking iron bed. The precious flow slowed, emptied into his mouth and he nearly cried out. She lay, eyes open with surprise, the thick river of red outlining the hollows and dips of her ivory throat. Pain shot through the surprise as her lips moved, no sound coming from them. William lay his head against her pale skin, kissing away the last rivulets as they slowed. The steady throbbing eased, only a faint pulse then gone.

Carefully he pulled back from her, his mouth closing the dripping wound with a long lick. There would still be marks, but that would be acceptable. He didn't mind his marks there. He stared down into the green pools, shadowed now without the spark of life in them. He leaned down to press his lips against hers. Cold, so cold. Why did the warmth leave so quickly?

For a moment he missed the spark, knowing it would never come back to those silent eyes. But it would have faded in time anyway, taking her along with it and leaving him alone again. Now all they had was time, all they had was together. She would never leave him.

Outside the rain stilled to tiny drops smattering against the wood with little more than a faint splat. William rose, pulling the quilt up to cover her as he moved away. She would be cold for a while. Then she would grow used to it. As he had. He tucked the soft fabric around her, smiling again as he remembered her teasing him with the sight of her luscious body. He arranged her with care, spreading her curls on the pillow and cushioning one cheek on her folded hands. She looked at peace. Checking to make sure no trace of blood remained, he trailed his fingers through her hair and smiled. It was done at last.

Yawning, he stretched before reaching for his clothing. Through the open window he smelled the rain, the sound of the slowing drops calming the fever inside him. He thought of her fear and moved to close the rattling panes. She would rest easier with it closed. When the time came she would wake frightened enough without adding her fear of the dark to it.

William dressed without hurry, lingering to gaze at her lying so still on the bed. If any should look in on her before he returned, she would appear asleep. He pulled the note out of his pocket and reread it. Mrs. Whitson would respect his wishes that no one disturb the room before he returned for he was a good customer and he paid in cash.

With a quiet movement William dimmed the lamp. No one needed the light now. He slipped his arms into the cape as he pressed the door closed, carefully shutting and locking it with the thick metal key. The hallway was empty, no noise coming from under the other doors. William slipped down the silent hallway with familiar ease.

As he stepped out into the night he glanced up at the darkened window of the tiny room where his treasure lay. For a moment it pained him to leave her so still and cold in the bed still warm from their play. But there were details he must see to before she woke. He reassured himself he would be back with her before long.

"Evening, sir."

Startled, William turned. The old man shifted on his broom, leaving his vain attempt to wipe away the debris from the storm.

"Good evening, Robbie." William doffed his hat, making his voice as pleasant as possible. An unexpected problem, but one which could be dealt with if need be. "Quite a storm, eh?" He drew the scent of the rain deep into him and smiled.

"Yes, sir, that it was. Gonna take me all night to get this walk clear for the ladies in the morning. Sure do make things smell nice though, don't it?"

William nodded. "Yes, it does. One of my favorite scents is the smell of rain."

Robbie turned his wrinkled face to the sky. "Looks to be over now. Mighty big storm to have played out so quick. But I guess that makes you happy."

William turned a quizzical look to him.

"Be okay for traveling now, I suppose."

"I hope so." William shifted the cape around him as he stepped off the wooden walk.

"You be back in a week?" The old man leaned on the rickety broom.

"No." William paused. "Sooner. Tell Mrs. Whitson not to bother with cleaning the room. I shall return in a day or so." Soon, my love. Soon.

2 comments:

  1. Your words have painted a picture that neither Bela Lugosi nor Robert Patterson could ever live up to...
    Not a Twilight or romantic vampire story fan, but this is nicely laid out and, sorry to repeat, paints the story before your eyes. Nothing like the smell of rain.

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  2. Thank you for those nice words. I have wanted a home for this little short story for a while so it's nice to see it here.

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