A RiverCities Tale

by Jacynthe Demorae

Jesstyn lingered in the shadows, watching Callista sleep. She seemed like a mirage, a confection of gold and rose-tinted ivory spun from her sweetest dreams. She didn't want to disturb her lover's peace, so crept forward silently, shedding her clothing and slipping under the tangled quilts.

Beneath the linens, she found a haven of warmth, the air heated by her mortal lover's body. Jesstyn hesitated, all too aware of the chill in her own flesh. But she must have made some sound, or Callista didn't sleep as soundly as she believed, for the other woman stirred and opened her eyes.

"You're back," Callista said with a sleepy smile, reaching for her. "You're freezing! Come here..."

Insistent hands tugged her close and the Brujah went willingly, nestling in close and burying her face in Callista's hair. Despite the offered comfort, her tension eased only a minute fraction.

"What is it?" Callista whispered, reaching up to stroke her hair. "And don't tell me 'nothing,' I can feel it. Tell me what's wrong."

What's wrong. God, where to begin? Jess closed her eyes. "I hurt," she whispered. "I need you."

"I'm here."

That simple assurance stilled the whirling chaos in her thoughts, and she
let out a long sigh, relaxing against her lover. Sure, deft hands began to move along her body, leaving trails of warmth against her cool skin. Callista's touch soothed her raw nerves. She nestled against her double, letting the other woman's warmth seep into her. She began to caress along the woman's soft curves, exploring. Callista's body was identical to her own, but felt deliciously different under her hands. Jess glided her palms down along Callista's ribs, watching in delight as her lover's eyes closed in dreamy contentment, lips parting.

Her flesh gleamed in the dimness, lustrous as pearl. Jesstyn bent her head and nibbled along Callista's throat. Her lover's pulse jumped and raced, beating against her lips. Her heartbeat filled Jesstyn's ears, as her body filled her arms. Sweeter still, the love that filled the aching places in her soul.

Slender hands gripped her shoulders with surprising strength, urging her closer.

"Please," Callista whispered, her breath warm and sweet."Jesstyn, please... "

Jess traced the paths of the veins in the mortal's throat with the tip of her tongue. "Not yet," she murmured, nuzzling in.

Callista gave a credible growl and twisted, rolling them both over so she straddled the Brujah's thighs. Jesstyn's surprise found relief in laughter. Callista's mouth came down hard on hers, cutting her off.

A warm, eager tongue probed past her lips, seeking, demanding entry. Jesstyn yielded willingly. Callista's taste filled her mouth, spreading over her tongue. The mortal made an inarticulate sound, pressing herself tightly against Jesstyn's slender body. Her lover's tongue rubbed sensuously against hers, smooth and rough, firm and insistent. Jesstyn moaned against Callista's mouth, her arms sliding up to clutch her slender body close. To be desired, to have another quiver and crave your touch, long for your presence. To know another knew of your pain and focused all her attention on easing it...

That had driven her to take her pain to Callista's bed, to rouse her mortal half from her dreams. And now, under Callista's caressing hands, under the balm of her kisses, the hurt began to ease. In its wake, desire flared.

At last, Callista broke the kiss, gasping in a desperate lungful of air. The two women lay twined together, scant inches separating their lips. Callista's eyes had a dreamy cast, but alive with a mesmerizing fire. Jesstyn stared at her, enrapt.

Callista's hands still trembled whenever she touched her, as if afraid the woman she reached for might fade in to a misty dream. Warm hands cupped her breasts, stroking over sensitive nipples, coaxing them into tight buds. Jesstyn closed her eyes and surrendered, whimpering softly as Callista's clever fingers moved over her. She arched her hips up, rubbing gently against her lover. She felt Callista tense, heard her breath catch, her flesh growing warmer and moist as her excitement flared higher.

Jesstyn stroked her hands down, following the curve of Callista's spine to the gentle swell of her buttocks. Delicately she kneaded at the firm flesh with her fingertips. Callista gave a strangled cry, her beautiful eyes going wide. Jesstyn smiled, knowing precisely what her double felt.

"Jesstyn..." she gasped, "oh, please..."

The Brujah slid her hands down along the backs of Callista's thighs, tracing along the sensitive nerve pathways. Callista shuddered and cried out, instinctively spreading her thighs to her vampire lover's touch. She clutched at Jesstyn's shoulders, drawing her up off the bed. Jesstyn took instant advantage, claiming one swollen nipple with her lips, suckling it eagerly. Callista made a soft, mewling sound, locking her hands together at the back of Jesstyn's neck, holding her lover's hungry mouth to her breast.

The velvet-soft flesh of Callista's inner thighs quivered as Jesstyn's fingertips swept teasingly along, delicately probing at the soft lips that shielded her lover's sex. Callista quivered against her, throaty moans spilling free. The Brujah's fingertips grew moist, slickened by the sweet fluids of Callista's body. Fixing her gaze on her lover'sface, Jesstyn slipped her fingers inside the woman's lush, warm body. She loved watching the brilliant rapture claim Callista's features ,the small, urgent movements she made whenever Jesstyn stroked inside her.

"Soon," she promised, moving her fingers inside her lover's body, following the rhythm she knew pleased them both the best.

"Now," Callista protested.

"Not yet."

With a half-choked sob, Callista ground herself down against Jesstyn's hand. Jesstyn laughed softly, savoring the warm press of her lover's body, the solid sound of her heartbeat, throbbing in the darkness. She increased the rhythm and the intensity, stroking deep into Callista's quivering body. She cried out, head thrown back, short nails digging into Jesstyn's shoulders, at the very edge of climax.

Now, Jesstyn thought, and rolled, putting Callista on her back. The suddenness of the move jolted her lover. She stared up, wide-eyed, full lips parted.

Jesstyn smiled down at her and lowered her mouth to Callista'swaiting body. She trailed her tongue down the shallow valley between her breasts, pausing to nip and suckle the taut nipples, rolling them against her tongue. Callista's hands moved into her hair, wrapping her fingers into the silken strands.

Down, along the flat belly, scraping her teeth over her ribs--Callista twitched and shuddered--resting her hands on Callista's restless hips. Down, pressing soft, warm kisses in the hollow of her hip, and her soft inner thighs. Callista's hands tightened in her hair, her breath turning harsh and ragged. Callista's sex lay smooth and flushed with arousal, carefully, lovingly shaved of shielding curls. An offering Callista had made to her vampiric lover. Jesstyn paused, looked up to meet her sweet woman's longing eyes.

"Yes," Callista whispered. "God, yes, Jesstyn...don't stop, please don't stop. .."

Jesstyn pressed her mouth between Callista's thighs, inhaling her rich scent. She sent quick, flickering flutters of her tongue along the sweet, hot folds of her lover's sex, tasting deep. Callista arched up under her, almost screaming. Her hands fisted in Jesstyn's hair, helplessly clinging to her. The mortal moved against her mouth and tongue, pleading, almost begging.

She could feel the tremors building in her lover's body, taste the almost unbearable excitement surging through her. With a last, slow, deep kiss, Jesstyn raised her head.


Callista almost flung herself at her. "Yes, oh, yes, please!"

Jesstyn tongued the soft hollow at the base of Callista's throat, tasting her pulse. Her jaw ached as her fangs extended and scraped along the delicate flesh. At the first brush of her fangs, Callista gave a wailing cry and pressed against her. Jess wound her own fingers through her lover's hair, holding her head. Her fangs pierced through, slicing into the throbbing carotid artery.

Blood rose in a thick, heady rush. Each frantic beat of her heart spilled more of Callista's sweet blood over her lips. Jesstyn gulped it down in greedy swallows, holding the other woman tight against her. Callista's warm breath fluttered through her hair. Callista touched her through her blood, soothing and quenching her desire. Caressed her through her veins. The boundaries between them blurred, almost disappearing.They lay as one now, no place in her body and spirit untouched, unloved.

Jesstyn lingered over the wound site, teasing them both as she slowed, taking tiny sips, lifting her mouth away, then chasing after the spill with her tongue.


Reluctantly, she sealed the wound with a kiss, lapping at Callista's neck until even the shadow of a bruise had faded.

"So wonderful," Callista sighed, her voice a lazy slur."So p'rfect..." She nestled in against her vampire lover--then froze.

"What is it?" Jesstyn snapped alert, leaning back to get a clear look at Callista.

Very slowly, the mortal raised her hands from Jesstyn's shoulders, flexing her fingers. She seemed to be staring at something past the Brujah's shoulders. Jess began to turn, to try and spot whatever troubled Callista, when she felt the cooling trickle spill over her collarbone.

I'm bleeding?

Reaching up, Jess traced the bloodtrail back to its source: three bloody half-moons dug into her flesh, the marks of Callista's nails. She hadn't even noticed it.

"Let me," Callista breathed, her eyes fever bright.

"No." Jesstyn rested her hands on the woman's shoulders, holding her in place. A moment later, she'd healed the tiny wounds. Callista, still lost in the ecstatic haze of the Kiss, tried to argue with her.

"But you'd like it," she said. "I want to make you happy, Jess. Let me..."

The Brujah shuddered, remembering Sinjin. "No, callisti, it's too dangerous. "

Callista frowned--almost pouting. Jess sent a silent prayer to anyone who might be listening. Not that she didn't want to share herself with Callista, she did. But she'd promised, sworn to herself,she'd never make another Ghoul. And if she couldn't keep promises to herself, how could she offer her word to anyone else? As for Thralls--another Thrall, she reminded herself--there was no way in or out of Hell she'd ever do that to Callista. Regnants had to be damn near perfect if they wanted to avoid damaging the people who near-worshipped them. And I am NOT perfect.

Jess sighed, and cradled Callista in her arms. She hadn't anticipated this little side-effect. The budding addiction she'd accepted--mostly because Callista had made it clear she fully understood the consequences. But the shadow of the Blood Bond still darkened their future.

And just how are we going to cope with that?


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