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And Eve Offered Him a Choice

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Ayako Sakamaki is one of the more volatile of her siblings, inclined to outbursts of selfishness and immaturity sometimes, but the power she wields as a purebred is undeniable. It's this royal blood that draws Ruki to her side almost instantly, although he carefully plots each of his moves and words, luring her in like a wild beast is tamed with food and affection. Unfortunately for Ruki, he never expects to fall prey to the other vampire's odd quirks and charms, and she's completely unaware of seducing him, until one evening he corners her in a dark hallway at the school and places his hand at the small of her back, and Ayako can't help but notice that he isn't wearing the smug grin she's used to seeing.

"Tch. What?" she stammers, brows furrowing.

Sighing, Ruki leans down to brush her bangs from her forehead for a quick kiss against it, straightening himself afterwards and informing her, "You really are clueless."

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Laito shivers as Azusa drags the flat of her blade across his neck, cold steel gliding over his skin as she traces a potentially fatal path from ear to ear, and she stops just behind his right ear to nick him again with the knife, blood bubbling up from the small cut as she leans down again to lap it up like some lazy cat toying with her prey.

"Y-You're not moving fast enough, babe," Laito reminds her, bucking his hips into her and scraping his tongue against the back of his teeth at the electric sensations that follow as she jerks back in response. "Who would have thought someone as pathetic looking as you could be so cute and cruel, ne?"

A soft smile parts Azusa's lips just enough to send another shudder down her boyfriend's spine as she sits upright on top of him, still straddling him and moving languidly against his cock as she licks the knife clean. The genuine thrill and fear reflected in Laito's eyes ignites the spark deep within her belly and she bends lower to kiss him just slightly on the mouth, pulling away with a quick whisper, "Maybe we could have scars to match?"

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Shuu remembers first catching a glimpse of him out of the conservatory window as she laid down for her nightly nap, spotting him as he roamed the gardens with nary a care as to the mansion's security, and as he turned his face towards the conservatory, she sees those telltale eyes and her heart almost gives out as she ducks beneath the window to avoid detection. Knowing better than to get her hopes up for nothing, she tries to ignore the butterflies stomping around in her belly as she returns to school to find out that he attends it as well.

Yuma, she hears one of his adopted siblings call him.

She intentionally passes him several times in the hallway, but he takes no notice of her. It's only after the eldest of Yuma's siblings, a scheming, shifty-eyed vampire by the name of Ruki, mentions Yuma's amnesia to one of his other brothers that she learns the horrid truth, and it's like the same day she collapsed before the burning village amid a sea of charred corpses, time stops entirely and ceases to exist, and she's left alone in the cold, empty void once more.

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Subaru has the art of being a wallflower down to a science, and tonight is no different, she tells herself as she folds her arms beneath her bosom and observes the fools dancing before as just that: idiots who fling their bodies and emotions all over the large ballroom in a vulgar display; no suitors dare approach her and the few that are either brave or stupid enough to make eye contact with her, Subaru's glower cuts them down to their true size in a matter of minutes, but there's one insistent blonde who ignores her icy aura and traipses over anyways, having the gall to even sit next to her at the table.

"Dance with me," he says offhandedly as if referring to the weather, turning his one visible blue eye onto her and letting his gaze roam shamelessly over her, "or maybe you're too afraid to dance because Reiji-kun forbid any contact with me or my brothers?"

Damn Mukami, Subaru thinks with an audible grunt to express her disgust, but what pisses her off more than anything is the fact that Kou speaks the truth about Reiji's orders to stay away from him and his 'family,' citing that their father wouldn't want them fraternizing with a bunch of half-blooded converts who used to slum it at an orphanage, and then the image of her father's disappointed countenance rolls into the spotlight of her mind's eye and she grins a little at the prospect.

Standing from her seat, she grabs Kou by the wrist and forces his hand onto her side, taking his other hand in hers and leaning forward to growl, "I'm only doing this to piss off the old man, so keep your hands where they belong and maybe I won't smash your balls in."

Kou acquiesces with a little smirk of his own as he whisks her onto the dance floor with a finesse that has her hating him even more, but when he leans over to sneak a kiss behind her ear, Subaru can't deny the heat surging into her face or the strength of her legs almost giving out as they continue their waltz, and by the time their dance ends she'll probably have him in a headlock, but Kou decides it's worth incurring her wrath if he can just squeeze a little flirtation in.

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"That's it," growls Ayako as she grips either arm of the chair and with all the strength she can muster, wobbles to her feet at last and adds, "I am not gonna stay a prisoner in my own fucking home!"

Her steps are shaky and uneven, but she manages to make it out the door of the bedroom she shared with her overly cautious husband, waddling down the dark corridor without an ounce of fear reflected in her bright green eyes as she passes servants and familiars alike, one of which scurries off to inform a certain someone that she has left her room. When she arrives at the topmost flight of stairs, though, Ayako finds reason to give pause and stares down the winding path with a rough swallow before looking down at her swollen belly with a weak glower, and she doesn't have a chance to take that first step when calloused hands latch onto her wrist and pull her backward gently.

"What do you think you're doing?" asks her husband, who's already puling her along the hallway and a safe distance from the stairway with a sigh, all too aware of how stubborn his Eve and wife can be at times and even more so now that she's with child, but when he looks down into her eyes he doesn't see that spark of defiance, just a longing for a little freedom and it tugs at his heart more than he cares to admit.

Ayako is all smiles as he scoops her into his arms and carries her down the stairs with the speed of a snail, calculating each step, Ayako muses, but regardless she can't stay annoyed with the bastard, and wraps an arm around his neck to support herself as she reaches up to kiss him on the cheek, grinning back at him when he looks down at her and she murmurs, "Thanks."

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Laito isn't sure why he grasps a fistful of Shin's shirt and jerks him forward with his free fist waiting, landing a blow so fierce and heavy that it sends the other vampire crashing through the drywall behind him, but when he glances back at Azusa again, who has her own knife drawn in her defense, something ignites within him. He sees himself again, flashes of abuse and bruises speckled throughout the years, and the rage claims his mind as he surges forward to catch Shin by the jaw as he stands again, hurling him into a nearby window that shatters and he falls through it to the courtyard from sixty feet below the balcony. He watches from the splintered shards of glass around the window frame as Shin staggers to his feet at last, glaring up at him as he spits up blood and mutters something under his breath before fleeing into the thick expanse of woods surrounding the abandoned chapel.

Azusa joins Laito at his side and grips the hem of his jacket, pulling him a little closer to her side as she whispers to him, "I don't know why, but...I didn't want him hurting me this time..."

Still uncertain of his own motives and actions, Laito simply claps her on the shoulder before taking her hand and leading her to the spiral staircase once more.

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"Oi, Neet," hollers Yuma as he enters the dark music room, glancing around for his girlfriend, "you in here?"

A grunt is all that answers him from across and the room, and then he spots her curled up in the window box along the wall, hair falling over one of her eyes as she turns her head a little to meet his gaze, and she lazily pats the spot beside her legs in lieu of actually inviting him over. Shaking his head, Yuma crosses the room and removes his jacket as he does so, sitting in the window box beside her and leaning on the frame to get comfortable.

"Don't you prepare ahead of time for these naps of yours?" he asks, draping his jacket over her and jumping a little as she actually sit upright and switches positions to accommodate herself, gripping Yuma's leg as she lays her head in his lap instead. A chuckle tumbles from Yuma's lips and he tousles her hair with a calloused hand, whispering, "As routine as this is becoming, I could learn to like it, too."

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Damn that Kou Mukami, thinks Subaru as she clenches her teeth and digs in deeper with her fingers, practically doubled over on her mattress, treating me like I'm something special all the time.

She hates how hard it is to hate herself whenever he's around, and sure he teases her a lot but it's just to get a reaction from her because he's a flirt like that, and even her boneheaded half-sisters comment on how differently Kou treats her from his throngs of admirers that mob him at school. It's understandably difficult for Subaru to maintain any positive self-image, what with her estranged mother constantly reminding her of her incestuous birthright and her father regarding her as nothing but a pawn in his fucked up little game of chess. Tears streak her pale cheeks as she finally opens her mouth with both shame and pleasure, squeezing her eyes shut as she imagines Kou in front of her on the bed, knuckle-deep in her as he smiles all breezy-like and whispers into her ear.

The high never turns out to be worth it in the end, Subaru recalls as she finally climaxes, and she collapses onto her side with a pained grunt, gripping the sheets until her knuckles turn stark white and her fangs grind against each other with more self-loathing than she had before she started.

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A breathtaking display of beauty and brutality greets Ruki as he bursts through the double doors leading into the Snake Demons' lair, his sword drawn at the ready, and instead of seeing his wife tethered to a chair in the center of the foyer as he was told she'd be, all he sees is a sea of corpses. Flesh and sinew stain the walls in large clumps, blood pools out from the center of the pile and all eyes are upturned towards their slayer, a vampire woman with hair as red as the lifeblood that drips from the edge of her blade. The slight swell of her belly attests to the cherished treasure within that the snakes threatened, and one that she found the strength to protect, and for that very reason, Ruki couldn't feel any prouder as a King, husband, and father-to-be.

"You," Ayako spits and gives her blade a quick swipe through the air to clear it of excess blood, regarding her husband with a perturbed pout, "you're late."

Ruki kicks aside bloodied corpses and wades through the carnage until he reaches her, dipping to one knee as he takes her hand in his to press his lips to the back of it with a smile, whispering in apology, "Forgive me, love."