The lady is a vamp, p.10
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       The Lady is a Vamp, p.10

         Part #17 of Argeneau series by Lynsay Sands
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Chapter Ten


  Paul woke up with the thought that he was lying on the lumpiest bed in existence. When he regained full consciousness and opened his eyes to see that it was Jeanne Louise he was lying on, he did a quick push up, removing his crushing weight from her chest. He peered down at her then, worried that he'd suffocated her or something, but when he saw her breasts rising and falling as she breathed, he relaxed a little. He also eased himself to the side and sat up to peer around.

  The fire had died down to embers and the lights were out in the Jacksons' and Corbys' cottages, but the moon and stars were reflecting off the smooth surface of the lake, giving some illumination. Actually, the water looked incredibly inviting under the moonlight, and Paul found himself thinking he should take a swim.

  His gaze slid back to Jeanne Louise. While he was mostly dressed, she was completely nude, splayed on her back in the sand like an angel fallen from the heavens. Paul's eyes slid over her pale limbs and torso, recalling the feel of her body sliding against his, and closing wet and warm around him and immediately hardened at the memory.

  He hadn't expected what had happened. Well, okay, perhaps in his heart of hearts Paul had been hoping for it. But he'd honestly expected she'd kiss and caress him a bit and then bite his neck. Task over. Instead, passion had exploded over them like a shower of sparks. It had filled his mind until all he could think of was finding the release that fast and furious passion had promised.

  It had definitely lived up to the promise, he thought. In fact, it had been so powerful that Paul didn't think he'd fallen asleep after they were done. Much as it made him squirm to admit it, he actually suspected that he'd just sort of passed out as it rode over him. He'd never experienced anything like it. Had never known a woman like Jeanne Louise. Around her he felt . . . hope, he realized. And happiness. And desire like nothing he'd ever enjoyed, even with his wife Jerri.

  The acknowledgment brought a wave of guilt over him, and Paul turned his gaze to the water once more. He'd loved Jerri with all his heart. He'd thought he'd never find anyone who could fill his heart as she had. But Jeanne Louise . . . He glanced to her again, his eyes caressing her face, carefree in sleep. Jeanne Louise filled his heart, his mind, and seemed to even fill his body. He felt like she slid into his skin when they kissed, like she was there with him as he rode the waves of pleasure. It was not something he'd ever even imagined experiencing. Truly, he'd thought that he'd had his grand love affair, that no one could compare to Jerri, and that all that was left was to raise Livy.

  When he'd thought of his future after Jerri died, Paul had seen himself alone from now on, a single father, seeing his daughter happily on her way in life, raising her, sending her off to college, walking her up the aisle, greeting his grandchildren . . . and maybe then, after his job was done, he'd thought he might enjoy a senior fling with a nice neighbor widow who understood that he could never love like he'd loved his wife again.

  Instead, Paul was starting to envision a different future, one with Jeanne Louise in it . . . and it was distracting him from his purpose in kidnapping Jeanne Louise. Rather than trying to convince her to turn his daughter and save her life, he was hungrily stripping her clothes off and merging his body with hers in the cool sand under a bright moon. Not just his body. It had almost felt as if their souls had been intertwined here under the stars and he wasn't sure he'd got all of it back.

  While he should be sated and clearheaded after the vigorous session, Paul wanted her again. He was hard and aching, fighting the urge to lean down and kiss her and start the madness all over again. And again. And again. In truth, Paul thought he could happily just stay here on the beach, his body entwined and inside Jeanne Louise's forever.

  He'd lost the plot of his plan, Paul realized unhappily, and while he had, his daughter continued to suffer her headaches and move closer to death.

  But he wasn't the only one who'd got caught up in things to the point of losing track of what they were supposed to be doing. Jeanne Louise hadn't even fed this time, which had been the reason behind the start of what had exploded into uncontrolled ardor. Which meant they'd be doing this again.

  The thought had the member between Paul's legs standing up like a flagpole. Sighing, he glanced to the smooth surface of the lake and pushed himself to his feet. His pants immediately started to slip down his hips. Paul let them drop to the sand, and stepped out of the warm cloth. He removed his T-shirt next, dropping it to lie beside the jeans.

  His gaze then slid to Jeanne Louise again, lying still and perfect in the sand, and then he turned and jogged toward the water.

  Jeanne Louise sighed sleepily and shifted onto her side with a little shiver, one hand searching blindly for her missing sheets. She must have kicked them off in her sleep, she thought unhappily, but frowned when rather than soft bedding her fingers encountered grains of sand. Eyes opening, she stared at the expanse of beach spread out before her and then sat up abruptly as memory returned as to how she'd got there.

  Paul wasn't beside her, as she'd expected, though his clothes were. Following that clue, Jeanne Louise turned to peer toward the lake, relaxing when she saw him swimming away from shore. He'd woken before her, she realized. Well, if he'd fainted, she thought next. She knew she had, but-her gaze slid to the dying fire, and then Jeanne Louise reached for his clothes, relaxing when she felt the warmth still clinging to them. He hadn't taken them off long ago and by her guess at least an hour or two had passed since their neighbors had left and they'd fallen into each other's arms like a couple of horny teenagers. He'd fainted too.

  Her gaze slid to the lake again and she briefly considered joining him in it. Just the memory of what they'd done was bringing back her desire almost full blown and making her want to touch and kiss him again, but then reason reared its ugly, but sensible, head. If she followed her instincts and joined Paul in the water, they wouldn't make it out before they were doing the same thing all over again. And if that happened and they fainted in the lake, she might survive, the nanos reviving her when she washed ashore, but Paul would drown. That was not something she wanted to risk.

  Grimacing, Jeanne Louise gathered her swimsuit, shorts, and T-shirt and got up to head to the cottage. Removing herself from temptation seemed the safest route.

  When she entered the cottage, she immediately headed for the master bedroom, stopping to look in on Livy on the way. The girl was sleeping soundly, but Boomer raised his head and wagged his tail. Jeanne Louise smiled. The dog was as devoted to the girl as her father was, she thought, as her gaze slid to Livy's sweet sleeping face. The two days' worth of meals the girl had been enjoying were beginning to show already. At least, Livy didn't appear quite as thin and pale as she'd been when Jeanne Louise had first seen her. That was good.

  Leaving her undisturbed, Jeanne Louise continued up the hall into her own bedroom and then into the bathroom. The sight of herself in the mirror there made her pause. She was covered with sand from head to toe. The fine grains sticking to her body like fleas on a dog.

  Jeanne Louise grimaced and quickly dropped her dirty clothes on the floor. She then turned on the shower. Leaving it to warm up, she slipped back into her room to grab one of the two nightgowns she'd bought at the mall. Jeanne Louise didn't normally wear them, but she'd thought it for the best since she might have to be up to rush to Livy's side in the night if the child needed her. Taking the rose-colored, knee-length nightie back into the bathroom, she laid it on the counter, then reached into the shower to test the water temperature. Finding it warm enough, Jeanne Louise stepped into the small stall and closed the door.

  Never one to dawdle, she was quick about her shower. Ten minutes later she was out. Jeanne Louise quickly wrapped her hair in a small towel, and then used a larger one to dry her body before donning her nightie. She followed that up with towel drying her hair and brushing it back from her face. She was going to leave it like that, but the idea of crawling into bed with wet hair
made her grimace. When a quick search of the cupboard under the sink produced a hair dryer, Jeanne Louise quickly used it and the brush to dry her hair, curling it under as she did.

  Satisfied that she wouldn't be sleeping on a damp pillow, or waking up with her hair standing up all over the place from sleeping on it wet, Jeanne Louise put the dryer and brush away and then headed back into her room. She contemplated the bed briefly, and then decided she'd best check to make sure Paul was still all right in the lake. Mortals had been known to suffer cramps and drown. Besides she was kind of thirsty and a glass of water sounded good. She'd grab a drink and look out to check on Paul.

  Slipping from her room, Jeanne Louise glanced in on Livy again and then moved out through the living room to the kitchen. A quick glance out the large living room picture windows didn't reveal much, but she just peered out in passing. In the kitchen, she grabbed a glass from the cupboard and then moved to the sink and turned on the tap. Leaving it to run for a moment, Jeanne Louise then looked out the window above it to scan the beach and lake, frowning when she didn't see evidence of Paul. There was no one in the lake that she could see. Her gaze shifted to the remains of the bonfire and she'd just realized that his clothes were missing too when the door opened behind her.

  Relaxing, Jeanne Louise turned her attention to slipping her glass under the running water, asking, "Good swim?"

  "Lovely," Paul answered, easing the door closed to keep it from clacking and waking Livy. She heard him set something on the table and cross to stand behind her as she turned off the water, but was still startled when his arms slid around her waist from behind.

  "You're still wet," Jeanne Louise protested on a laugh as he pulled her back against his chest and brushed her hair aside to press a kiss to the side of her neck.

  "Mmmm, I didn't have a towel," he murmured against her throat. "And you forgot to feed. "

  Jeanne Louise clutched her glass and glanced over her shoulder at him, then gasped as one of his hands slid up to find a breast through her cotton nightgown. She gasped again as his other hand slid down to cup her between her legs and press her back against him. Not only had Paul not had a towel to dry off, he hadn't bothered dressing, Jeanne Louise realized as she felt his body press against her through the thin material.

  "Paul," she whispered, and couldn't have said what she'd meant by it. Whether it had been a plea, a caution, or a reprimand. It didn't matter. Paul lowered his head to kiss her, and Jeanne Louise just didn't care. She cared even less when his hand slid up to slip inside the top of her nightgown to find and caress first one breast and then the other. The touch drew a moan from her throat, and Jeanne Louise arched into his touch as she kissed him back.

  When Paul broke the kiss to trail his mouth to her ear, she sighed and tilted her head. The cold splash of water on her hand as the glass tilted in her hand reminded her that she still held it and Jeanne Louise immediately set it on the counter. Paul's hand at her breasts had tugged the nightie down now to fully reveal them, and he was fondling and toying with first one and then the other with the one hand. With the other he was tugging her nightie up.

  Jeanne Louise covered the hand at her breast with her own. With the other she reached back to catch him by the neck. She then turned her own face back to him for another kiss. Paul gave in to the demand, covering her mouth and blocking the gasped groan that followed when his hand finally slid under the nightgown and between her legs.

  When his fingers found the core of her, Paul broke their kiss to whisper, "God, you're hot and wet for me already. "

  Jeanne Louise merely removed the hand that had been encouraging him at her breasts and reached behind to find the hardness prodding her, evidence that he was in a similar state. Closing her fingers around him, Jeanne Louise squeezed and then groaned again as the passion sliding through her increased.

  Cursing, Paul urged her back a bit from the sink with the hand between her legs. He then used the other to wrench her nightie up and out of the way. In the next moment, Jeanne Louise was grabbing for the countertop as he slid into her.

  Paul released a long groan by her ear as he entered her, the hand between her legs never stopping its caresses, while the one that had pulled her night gown up now clasped her upper thigh, pulling her back into him as he pushed forward.

  Jeanne Louise closed her eyes briefly at the rush of sensation pounding through her, and then moaned as he withdrew and slid back in. The tension was building in her, amplified by his, and Jeanne Louise was sure she was about to explode, when Paul suddenly froze. She blinked her eyes open, catching their reflection in the window, and seeing the frown on Paul's face.

  Before she could ask what was wrong, he'd pulled himself out of her, caught her wrist and was dragging her from the kitchen. Jeanne Louise followed unprotesting as it occurred to her that it would have been a painful landing on the kitchen's hardwood floor at the end.

  Paul led her to the master bedroom and straight to the bed, before pausing and turning to face her. He reached for the hem of her nightgown, no doubt intending to remove it, but Jeanne Louise took him by surprise and pushed him back on the bed. He bounced on the soft surface, eyes wide, and then grinned.

  "Like to be on top, do you?" he asked with amusement, pulling himself further up the bed so that his legs no longer dangled off the edge.

  Jeanne Louise simply grabbed the hem of her nightgown and drew it up, to quickly strip it off. Tossing it to the floor, she then moved along the side of the bed until she was even with his hips, then she reached out and caught his erection in hand.

  Paul stiffened, but just watched her.

  "Move closer to the edge," she whispered, afraid of waking Livy in the next room.

  Paul's eyebrows rose, but he slid to the side until there was no room between himself and the edge of the bed.

  Jeanne Louise smiled and immediately swung her left leg over him to rest on the bed by his other hip, leaving her right one still planted on the floor. She then used her hold on his shaft to direct him into her.

  Paul groaned as Jeanne Louise lowered herself onto him, his hands reaching for her. One found her breast and began to play and fondle there, but the other slid between them, finding the core of her excitement and caressing that. Jeanne Louise left the hand between her legs, but she claimed the one at her breast, clasping it and bringing it to her mouth to kiss as she raised and lowered herself on him again. Then she licked between his fingers briefly, before kissing and nibbling her way across his palm to his wrist as she raised and lowered herself again, finding the foot on the floor made the action easier.

  Meeting his eyes over his arm, Jeanne Louise raised herself up once more, but this time as she slid back down his length, she allowed her fangs to slide out and sink into his flesh. Paul grunted, his body arching and going stiff in the bed, and then he thrust his hips up, his hardness ramming into her as every muscle spasmed under the rush of pleasure that followed.

  Jeanne Louise was aware of his cry of pleasure, of his body shuddering beneath hers with release. But her own body was caught up in the waves too, vibrating like a plucked guitar string as she sucked at his wrist and ground down on him, unable to stop either motion until the final tidal wave of pleasure rushed over her, crashing against her mind with a violence that left her stunned and sinking into darkness.

  A far off keening woke Jeanne Louise. Opening her eyes, she stared blankly at the chest she was splayed on, and then became aware of the sobbing and wailing coming from the next room. Livy. She stiffened briefly, and then eased herself up and off of Paul, managing the task without waking him. Once on her feet, Jeanne Louise caught up her nightgown and tugged it on over her head as she headed for the girl's room. However, the child wasn't in there when she entered.

  Frowning, Jeanne Louise turned and followed the sobs and wails to the living room and found the girl curled around Boomer on the sofa, clutching him desperately as she cried her heart out.

; "What is it sweetie? Another headache?" Jeanne Louise asked, moving quickly toward her.

  Livy lifted her head from Boomer's furry back at once. Her eyes widened, and then she wailed, "I thought you and Daddy were dead!"

  "What?" Jeanne Louise asked with amazement, sinking to sit on the sofa next to her and wincing when she dipped into the child's head and felt the pain raging there.

  "I h-heard a scr-scream," Livy explained. "It waked me up and my head hurt and I came to find you and Daddy and you were both asleep, but I c-couldn't wake you u-up," she sobbed miserably. "I thought you were dead. "

  "No, of course we aren't, sweetie," Jeanne Louise murmured, quickly working to mask the pain in the child's head. "Your daddy's fine too. We were just sleeping. "

  "Then why didn't you wake up when I shook you and screamed?" Livy asked, her sobs lessening as Jeanne Louise took the pain away and onto herself.

  "We probably just had too much wine by the bonfire," Jeanne Louise lied. Good Lord, they must have been well and truly out of it if the girl's shouts and shaking them hadn't woken either of them. And good Lord, they'd both been naked and . . . well, basically in a rather compromising position. Not that Livy seemed to have noticed. Thank God.

  "A scream woke you up?" Jeanne Louise asked suddenly, slow to pick up on that with the pain now pounding in her head.

  Sniffling, Livy nodded. "Both Daddy and you screamed. "

  "Hmm, well we must have had a bad dream," Jeanne Louise muttered, knowing it had been their cries of passion that had woken the child. They would have to ensure they weren't in the next room in future when indulging in . . . er . . . Jeanne Louise let the thought go. She just couldn't think clearly anymore. This headache was worse still than the last. They were becoming more and more unbearable.

  Deciding the girl had been comforted enough, Jeanne Louise put the child to sleep. Livy slumped on Boomer and Jeanie stayed in her mind for several more minutes to ensure all would be well. Then she leaned back on the sofa beside the pair and waited for her own pain to abate.

  Jeanne Louise tried to think about their situation as she waited, trying to sort out if it was time to explain about life mates to Paul and that he was hers, but hard as it was to think at the moment, she didn't get far. Grimacing, she let the matter go and got to her feet. The moment she picked up Livy, Boomer was up and off the couch, ready to follow as Jeanne Louise carried his little girl to bed. When she set the girl in the bed and covered her up, the dog leapt up onto the bed to curl at her feet. Jeanne Louise gave the loyal dog a pet, kissed Livy's cheek, and then slipped out of the room.

  Paul was still sound asleep when Jeanne Louise returned to the master bedroom. She hesitated, wondering if she should sleep on the couch so as not to disturb him, but then climbed carefully into bed beside him, easing under the covers. Once there she paused and eyed him. Paul was crashed out on top of the blanket next to her and would no doubt get cold in the night. After a brief internal debate, Jeanne Louise gently shook his shoulder.


  "Hmmm?" he murmured sleepily, turning his head toward her voice, but not opening his eyes.

  "Do you want to get under the covers?" she suggested.

  When Paul mumbled in his sleep, but didn't seem to fully wake, Jeanne Louise shrugged to herself and left him as he was. She lay down in the bed, but found herself peering at him. Her life mate. Damn. The thought still made her shake her head and marvel. Most immortals waited centuries, even millennia to find their life mates. Few were fortunate enough to find them so young. And at just over a century Jeanne Louise was definitely considered young by most of her kind . . . a baby really. Yet there he was . . . her life mate. The one man she couldn't read or control, and the one man she could think freely around and not guard her thoughts.

  Paul was her oasis in a chaotic world where Jeanne Louise usually had to be on guard . . . and she was terrified of losing him.

  The thought made Jeanne Louise turn on her side away from him and huddle under the blankets. Things were going well enough, but it was still tricky. She thought he liked her for herself, but who could say with men? He might just like her for sex and what she could do for Livy.

  Jeanne Louise stilled and listened as Paul began to shift around in the bed beside her. He'd woken up after all, she realized, when the blankets lifted behind her, and had to wonder if the cool night air on his naked skin had finished what she'd started. Then his body slid up behind her, his front pressing to her back as he slid an arm around her to draw her back against him. Once he had her positioned where he wanted her, his hand slid lazily to cup one breast as he kissed her neck. Jeanne Louise released a little sigh as her body responded, but she was concerned about having fed off him and asked, "How do you feel?"

  "Honestly?" Paul asked in a murmur by her ear.

  "Yes," Jeanne Louise said with amusement.

  "Like I want to make love to you again, but I'm too tired," he admitted wryly, and she chuckled at the admission.

  "That's all right. Sleep," Jeanne Louise said sliding her hand over his arm and down to cover his hand on her breast. "There's always tomorrow. "

  "Tomorrow, huh?" Paul asked with amusement, nuzzling her ear. "Are you going to break out into song, Annie?"

  Jeanne Louise's eyes widened in the darkness. "Well, Mr. Jones. It seems you have a vein of sarcasm hidden in your sweetness. "

  Paul chuckled at the words and pressed a kiss to the side of her head. "Just a little one, Ms. Argeneau. I shall try to refrain from tapping it. "

  "Don't bother on my account," she said easily. "It makes you interesting. "

  "You vampires," he tsked, tugging her tighter against him. "You always go for the veins. "

  "Hmm," Jeanne Louise murmured. "Speaking of veins, did I hurt you?"

  "Not at all," Paul assured her, and then asked, "Are you going to try a different vein each time?"

  "Hoping I'll eventually go for a genital bite?" she asked with amusement.

  "Absolutely," he said unabashed, and Jeanne Louise chuckled softly at the enthusiasm in his voice.

  "Maybe next time," she said lightly, and then murmured, "Good night, Paul. "

  "Good night, John boy," Paul responded, and then grunted when she smacked his hand in punishment.

  "Someone watched way too much television growing up," Jeanne Louise said dryly.

  "Someone still does," he admitted, and allowed his hand to drift away from her breasts and down between her legs. "Maybe you can help me find something more interesting to do in future. "

  Jeanne Louise's eyes opened sharply as he began to caress her lazily. "I thought you were tired?"

  "I'm waking up," Paul said, and shifted his hips against her bottom, proving just how awake he was.

  Jeanne Louise groaned as she felt his hardness prod her, and reached back to clasp his erection in hand as she cautioned, "Okay, but we have to be quiet. We woke up Livy last time. "

  "We did?" he asked, stilling. "Was she okay?"

  "Headache," she admitted. "And it scared her when she couldn't wake us up. "

  "She was in here? She saw us?" Paul asked with alarm, his hands halting abruptly.

  Jeanne Louise sighed and shifted onto her back in front of him. "It's all right," she said reassuringly. "I soothed her, took away her headache, and put her back to bed. "

  Paul remained still for a minute and then let his breath out on a sigh. "Thank you," he murmured, his eyes full of sincerity as they met hers, but filling with something else entirely when they dropped down to see that the blanket was around her waist, leaving her breasts on offer. Sliding his hand up to clasp the nearer one, Paul breathed, "Damn, I think I love your breasts. "

  "You love my breasts?" Jeanne Louise asked dryly.

  "And other parts," he murmured distractedly, lowering his mouth to claim the nipple of the breast he held.

  Jeanne Louise bit her lip as Paul began to suckle, sending shockwaves of p
leasure through her, then sighed and relaxed, murmuring, "It's a start. "
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