‘Two Hundred years?’ I couldn’t help thinking about it. “In the last two hundred years, I’ve not been anywhere near Olympus, but in the three hundred years before that? We’d narrowly missed meeting each other a half a dozen times.
I reached out to take the hand he offered me, and the effect was immediate. It felt like licks of fire were racing up my arm to my heart, much more pleasant than the fire of the change, but similar in nature. I could feeling over riding every other bond I had to anyone. My sire bond to Aro, already damaged beyond repair was obliterated; the sire bond I had with Carlisle was downgraded to non essential in nature, and would be broken if Samuel requested it. What scared me the most was the it did the same thing to the twin bond I had with Jasper. It had been there since we were in the womb, I think, and in a moment, it was not important anymore. I fought as hard as I could against that change Jasper was so important to me and it would kill me to lose him. I felt it mold a little to my will when I fought it. I was still there, still strong, and couldn’t be broken, but the bond with Sam would override it to a certain extent. If they were in danger, I’d always save Samuel first. Jasper was officially number two.
Once my heart and mind accepted the changes, and the new bond, I raised my eyes to his and the bond was cemented. His eyes were a beautiful moss green color, and I knew he could see all the way to my soul. He too was fighting the nature of the bond in regards to his siblings. I could see when it settled into the same bond I had with Jasper now, he was much more at ease.
“You should call me Sam,” he finally spoke, and the timbre of his voice made me wish my heart was still beating. It would have skipped a beat for sure. “Everyone else does; Samuel is much too formal.”
He took a step forward and raised the hand he was still holding to his lips to kiss my knuckles, before placing it over his heart. The touch of his lips on my skin caused a few more interesting reactions, and the steady beat of his heart helped to keep me calm.
Now that both of his hands were free, he reached up to touch my face with a feather light touch, as though he was afraid I was going to disappear again. I leaned into his touch with a sigh, and before I knew it, I was purring, as all Vampires do with the are content with their mate by their side.
“Is she purring?” and incredulous voice broke in from my immediate left.
I snarled and pushed Sam behind me while whirling around to face this new threat. I came nose to nose with his brother, Dean, who two three hasty steps back, and a smirking Jasper.
“Jasper Allen Whitlock!” I growled. “You wipe that ridiculous smirk of your face before I remove your head from your body and do it for you.” I felt the tension leave body and looked at Jasper, who was grinning and sending out a wave of calm.
“No need to get violent, sister dear. Take a couple of deep breaths.”
“Jasper, what is happening to me? I am never that violent without proper cause!”
“My best guess, Jess? It’s the bond. It’s still new, it’s not completed and your emotions are on overload.” He paused for a moment, “It might be a wise decision to take him somewhere else, perhaps a little more secluded =, before you come across another female and rip her to shreds?” He then turned to Dean. “Yes, she was purring. Vampires do that when they’re happy”
“Huh, you learn something new everyday, eh Sammy? Of course, we’ve not ever run across a Vampire of your, um, type, before. We’ve heard of you of course, and those psychos in Italy, but they don’t strike me as the type to be happy, if the stories are anything to go by.” Dean replied, while trying to make himself as nonthreatening as possible. He was failing, miserably.
“Trust me, only half of what you hear is true. The other half is greatly watered down versions of his atrocities. Aro turned both Jasper and I at 16, and we’ve seen first hand how twisted he can be. All he wants is power, and he’ll do anything to get it. If the latest rumors are true, he turned a pair of twelve year old twins last year. They are rumored to be almost as gifted as Jasper and I, but to turn children that young is a crime as far as I am concerned.”
“Twelve years olds?” Sam asked from behind me. “He turned twelve year olds into Vampires?” I could taste his anger, and I felt it surging through the bond.
“Jane and Alec,” Jasper answered. “They were accused of witchcraft by their own parents after some mysterious deaths in their village and were set to be burned at the stake when they suddenly disappeared. Their parents were burned in their place.”
“They are incredibly powerful, their gifts are like living unforgivables,” I cut in. “I’d imagine Aro will send them after Jasper and I sometime in the next century, if he can find us. It’s his favorite test. If you can find us and come out reasonably unscathed, you get a place on the guard. If you come out worse for the wear, which is most of the time, he banishes you from Volterra. If we kill you, well, that’s it. We try not to kill people, but there are some who are true monsters. Men who prey on young boys, women who seek to make men repay for crimes they haven’t committed, and I cannot in good conscious send that out into the world. I usually do it quickly, set them on fire and be done with it. Aro used to use me as his executioner, which is why we left in the first place, I hate killing people, but if I have to, I do it quickly.”
Sam wrapped his arms around my waist, from where he was standing behind me and held me close as I began to shake a little. His touch and scent calmed me instantly.
“Amazing, so you guys are like, hunters. Have you ever, you know, ganked anything else?”
Jasper began to laugh. “How do you think we met meathead? Jessica saved him from a rampaging minotaur. She tore it’s head clean off it’s shoulders.”
“That’s unfair!” I exclaimed. “I was just trying to snap its neck. I can’t help that the stupid thing tried to run in the opposite direction.”
“Wait! You’re the one who decapitated the minotaur? Achilles still has it’s head. He says that the warrior who killed it is his greatest ally.“
If I could have blushed I would have. “Yes, well, I told him not to keep it, but I certainly didn’t want it. We’ve lived as nomads for five hundred years, so no place to put it. Besides, it’s -” I froze as the scents of six people heading our way hit my nose. Two were familiar, Achilles and Carlisle, but four were not, and they were unmistakably female. I automatically shifted into a protective crouch, shoving sam further behind me as I did so.
“Jessica!” Jasper snapped. “Gop back to your suite and take him with you . I will handle this.”
I obeyed automatically, my instincts agreeing with Jasper’s assessment. He could handle whatever was happening and I could keep Sam safe from the threat. I grabbed Sam’s hand and started walking.
“I’m going to fucking kill Achilles. I told him I would come and get him when it was safe. Does he listen to me? No! Not only does he not listen to me, he brings three girls we’ve never met before with him.” I could hear Jasper ranting as we walked away.
Several steps into our walk, my head cleared and I could think again. “Three unknown females? I smelled four.”
“One of them is probably my baby sister, Danielle, daughter of Apollo. I have no idea who the other three are, but it’s probably best that you don’t kill any of them.”
I laughed, “Yes, that would not be the best idea. So,” I asked suddenly, “how much do you know about the, um, mating habits of Vampires?”
It was his turn to laugh, a rich deep chuckle that sent shivers down my spine. He began to rub circles on the back of my hand with his thumb as he answered. “Not much. Just that it;s permanent and obviously instantaneous.”
“Yes; we mate for life. We only get one shot at it. One mate, and if the mate rejects us or dies, we die. Slowly and painfully. The initial bond is instant, and it supersedes all other bonds. We’re also fiercely protective of our mates, especially in the beginning. I will be on edge and a little controlling until it’s completed.”
“Completed?” Sam questioned.
“Consummated” Came my rather abrupt answer.