New Kingdom: American Court Ch. 07byMicKay©
When Gabriel returned to his apartment, he found Alena asleep on the couch. Gently touching her face, he placed a soft kiss on her forehead. Torn between letting her sleep and waking her so they could prepare to leave, he opted to just watch her for several more minutes. Eight years of pain and loneliness would end tonight. While he had enjoyed being with Alena the last few days, their relationship had been civil and hardly on the level where he wanted. Grinning at her sleeping form, he wondered if Alena would agree that their tryst in the bathroom last night was acting civil. A noise near the door brought his attention to the entrance where Edward stood watching him.
"I know you will be leaving soon," Edward whispered, "But I wanted to see you before you left. Am I correct in assuming that the Council gave you no grief in your request?"
"None," Gabriel replied. "I have been given permission to change her. We'll leave as soon as she's ready."
"Good," Edward commented walking into the living room and pausing to look at Alena. "Iona is recovering. I am indebted to you for..."
"No," Gabriel interrupted, "I helped a friend. There is no debt." Looking down at Alena, "And saving the girl increased my chances of scoring with her older sister."
After both men laughed, Edward said, "I don't think you have to worry about Alena allowing anything to separate you two again."
"I got that same impression last night."
When Gabriel smiled at his friend, Edward could only assume that something had occurred between the two lovers giving Gabriel the confidence he needed for their future.
"Ah, well," the king said, "It's about time. But don't let me stop you from fulfilling all of your wonderful plans with the girl."
"We will return within the week."
"No rush," Edward said walking to the door. "I received confirmation that all tainted blood has been confiscated and we are in the process of testing its properties." Turning to look at Gabriel, he added with a serious voice, "Unfortunately, Cassian managed to escape while we were tending to Iona."
"I heard and I take responsibility for that," Gabriel said following Edward to the door. "After Alena showed me his involvement, I should have taken him into custody immediately."
"No," Edward interjected, "He was a political guest in my home and we could hardly explain his imprisonment without divulging our suspicions. But," he added, "He tried to destroy me by destroying my mate. Cassian's destruction will be dealt by me."
After neither had spoken for several minutes, Edward looked at Gabriel and said, "We will fight this rebellion together later. You have a mate to change and I have a mate to...."he paused before finishing his thought.
"What?" Gabriel asked watching his friend's face relax into a natural smile.
"Iona is calling to me," he said with a laugh, "We will see you when you return."
A few minutes later, Alena sat up on the couch, a little disoriented with no idea how long she had slept or what the current time was. She could hear muffled voices and movement in the foyer of the apartment. Standing, she took a moment to get her bearings and then followed the sounds. At the door, she noticed two sets of luggage in masculine and feminine styles.
Bending over to inspect the floral print cosmetic case, Alena screamed when her feet were suddenly swept from under her as her body was lifted and tossed over an extremely large shoulder. Pulling her hair from her eyes, she quickly surveyed the scene to see several maids giggling at her current predicament and then look the broad back and tight ass that she had secretly desired for many years.
"Gabe," she calmly said to his bottom as he carried her through the apartment, "What's going on?"
"After eight, long years of waiting," he said, standing on her feet, "I find that I am forced to wait even longer while my mate is taking a nap."
"Sorry," she said with a blush, "I was watching TV and just got bored. Besides, your note said for me to rest."
"Yeah, well," he said with mock pain, "I was forced to seek housekeepers' assistance in packing your clothes while you dreamed of me."
Ignoring his arrogant assumption, Alena asked, "What clothes? I have the one outfit you gave me yesterday and this robe," she indicated the garment covering her body.
"I've taken care of it," Gabriel pulling her close. "I had a few select pieces prepared for you."
"Uh," Alena paused, "Should I take a look..."
"No," he interrupted. "Get ready. A dress is laid out on the bed with the other necessary items." Touching his forehead to hers, he added, "My patience for waiting has ended."
Walking to the bed, Alena picked up the black, sleeveless dress and asked, "Did I hear Edward's voice? God, this dress is beautiful. Is he still here?"
"Yes. I'm glad you like it. And no," he chronologically replied. "He came by to inform us that your sister is recovering and to wish me good luck. And now, he's with her proving that it's good to be the king."
"Nothing," Gabriel chuckled walking to her and quickly placing a kiss on her shoulder.
"Good luck, huh?" Alena asked, "Do you think you'll need it?"
"Good or bad," Gabriel replied, "I'm getting lucky."
"Wow," she said "I'm not sure that I knew how arrogant you are."
"Baby," he said pulling her body close, "did I ever claim to be humble?"
"Until yesterday, you never claimed to be anything," she said wrapping her arms around his neck and reaching up for a kiss, "General Gabriel Philandros, leader of the world's vampire armies."
Gabriel playfully swatted Alena on her bottom and said, "Get dressed. Our plane is waiting."
"But Gabe," she hesitated, "Isn't it almost dawn."
"Actually, the sun's been up for two hours."
"Then shouldn't we wait for sunset?"
"Aren't you afraid of exposure to the sun?"
Laughing at her comment, he placed his hands on her face and kissed her brow, nose and chin. "Oh baby, you're so funny."
"It's my pleasure to be your comic relief," she said prickling at his teasing.
"Those of the Third Creation have no adverse reaction to the sun," he said walking away from her. "But our native time zone is ingrained in our creation and will not allow us the luxury to adjust. The system conveniently eliminates jet lag but forces us to sleep during the day while in foreign time zones."
"But every vampire in this house sleeps during the day."
"Why would they sleep if they could be outside in the sun?"
Stopping to turn and look at her, Gabriel answered, "You've slept during the day since you arrived at the mansion."
"Because I wanted to be with you," she admitted.
"And the bond between sire and changeling is even stronger. The newborn sleeps and wakes to be with the one who made them."
"Are you saying that every vampire in this house was sired by someone who lives here too?"
"So," she hesitated, "Have you, uh, ever," pausing while nervously rocking back and forth "sired...?"
"Jealous?" he laughed at the glare in her eyes and ducked behind the door before the shoe flying through the air could hit its target.
"Gabe?" Alena yelled to stop him from leaving. "What's a native time zone?"
Standing at the door admiring her state of undress, he paused for a moment and answered, "The time zone of the place you were born or, in my case, created."
"Where is your native time zone, Gabe?" she asked, exasperated at his avoidance of answering her question.
Smiling at her curiosity, he winked and turned to walk out only pausing at the door to say, "A place near Iraq." Walking from the room, he continued saying, "It's been called Babylon, Mesopotamia, and the Garden of Eden. Hell, the ancient Greeks called it Mount Olympus."
"Wait," she said chasing him down the hall while zipping her new dress. "Mount Olympus was on a mountain overlooking Greece."
"Not Greece," he answered, "but definitely a rather tall mountain. Noah's ark still rests there."
"Mount Olympus the home of twelve immortals. Not seven."
"Five of my brothers have been mated for several hundred years," he turned to her with a smile. "And if you don't get dressed so we can have an official mating, Edward will get to take his bride to the next Calling and I will still be going stag."
An hour later, Alena sat beside Gabriel in his Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren numb from yet another set of revelations. Remembering the last time she had ridden in this car, she was then shocked from the news of her sister's survival. Now, only a few days later, she had seen her sister, and was finally with her love from years ago. Sneaking a glance at Gabriel, she realized that they were finally consummating their relationship.
Eight years ago, they had made the plans but had not advanced this far in their quest. Even then, she had been nervous about the physical act they would share, but she had spent every day for months with Gabriel and eventually they had breached the most personal topic. Until then, he had never asked or mentioned her lack of experience. She had assumed that his understanding of her family life had provided enough details of the demands on her life to explain why she had never dated, much less slept with a man.
Gabriel had been considerate and comforting while still slightly arrogant. His comments that she had waited for him because she belonged to him were oddly attractive to her. While she was partial to Gabe's features, Alena remembered her female co-workers swooning over Edward's classic looks and personality. A few of the woman had referred to Gabriel as the better looking of the two, but so intimidating that he was more frightening than attractive.
Glancing again at the man to her left, Alena smiled at her good fortune. Not only did she think Gabriel was the best looking man that had ever lived, she also believed that he was kind, honest, and loving. Was it unfair to use Gabe's strength as a support? Maybe she would have fewer problems in her new life, or maybe no problems at all, but he would be there for her to share the events of work and life in their future. Hopefully, she would be strong enough for him to feel comfortable confiding his concerns to her.
She looked again at the remaining lines around his eyes. In just a few hours of rest, Gabriel looked more relaxed than he did last night. She knew that he was concerned with the rebellion against the New Kingdom and the infiltration of infected blood inside the mansion must have been an indication on how strong that force had grown. Maybe when she changed, he would be able to explain everything. Maybe she would be able to help him.
"Will I be able to understand things faster than I do now?" she blurted out loud.
"That didn't sound right," she looked to her lap frustrated. "I was wondering when I will understand everything. I figured you might be able to talk faster and I could understand faster. That really sounds stupid when I say it out loud."
Laughing at her words, Gabriel reached to take her hand and asked, "Are you getting nervous?"
"Me? No. Why?" and with a grunt turned to the window to press her face against the cool glass.
"Soon," he explained. "We can get a few hours sleep. I think we both need some rest."
"Where are we going?" she asked knowing that the place would be perfect but still holding on to that scene of her dreams.
"It's a surprise."
"Ha! I know where it is."
"Impossible," he corrected. "With the exception of my brothers and a few employees, no one knows this place exists."
"So," he hesitated, "Are you nervous?"
"Yes," she answered honestly. "I'm moving into the realm of the unknown."
After a few moments of silence, he said, "You were ready to do this eight years ago." Then tugging her hand so she would look directly at him, he asked, "Are you having doubts?"
"No," she quickly answered. "No doubts, just questions. A lot of questions."
"Good," he said with a smile and then announced, "We're here."
"At the Gulfstream," he replied with an amused grin.
"Oh," she said with obvious disappointment.
"What wrong?" he asked with rising panic.
"I just thought maybe we were going somewhere else." Then before he could reply, she asked, "Wait a minute. We couldn't have driven to the Gulf Stream this quickly."
Barely concealing his amusement, Gabriel said, "We have driven to the airfield."
"To catch a plane?"
"Why else would we drive to an airfield?"
"So," she said with confidence, "We are flying to the Gulfstream."
"No," he corrected her, "the plane is a Gulfstream. We're borrowing the corporate jet."
Glaring at him in frustration, Alena folded her arms and sighed. "To go where?"
"That is the surprise," he said resigning his control of laughing at her. "Did you really believe that I thought the Gulf Stream was a secret?"
"Fuck!" she yelled, frustrated at being the cost of his joking mood.
"Finally!" Gabriel exclaimed while still laughing. "There's the girl I remember from eight years ago."
"You have me confused with some bimbo who will tolerate being laughed at just so she can ride on your fancy jet."
"No," he said as he parked the car, "I remember the person you had forgotten to be. There was once a girl who looks similar to you who would tease me about working late and drinking blood."
"You do know that I had absolutely no idea who you were. Hell, I just thought you were some gorgeous business exec who would never give me a second glance. What did I have to lose?"
"Your life!" he answered. "No one would have believed that I let you tease me like you did."
"You would give as good and you'd get," she said with a smile. "And apparently, your revenge has no statute of limitations."
"I've missed your spirit."
"Life has been difficult," she quietly replied as the shadow of doubt crossed her face.
"Baby," he said in a serious tone, "I'm sorry for the problems you've had to manage by yourself and if you ever need to talk about it, then I'm here for you."
"I didn't have a breakdown over Lia or Tony. Even the bills were part of my normal life," she confessed. "When I lost you, I thought that my world had not only gone from bad to worse but now I also had to be mocked. I was dealing with my crappy life just fine and then I met you only to find out that I couldn't have you."
Losing control of her emotions, Alena covered her face with her hands and cried, "I'm so sorry to start crying like this. Everything is perfect and I'm acting mental. Jeez, sometimes I can really be a girl."
Pulling her as close to him as the console would allow, Gabriel stroked her hair and said, "You've suffered a lot. And you've had quite a shock in the past week. Come with me and let's start our life together." After a silent nod of her head, Alena leaned into Gabriel for a quick kiss. They exited the car and walked to the plane hand in hand.
Boarding before Gabriel, she turned and asked, "Where's our luggage?"
"On the plane."
"I'm not even going to ask how it arrived before us," she said as she entered the cabin. "Good lord, this is gorgeous."
"I thought you might appreciate being spoiled just a little," he said guiding her through the cabin.
Walking through the area, she was amazed at the size and amenities available. The entire Finance Department of her hospital could have fit in the cabin and every department needed the office equipment that now sat idly on the plane. Inhaling the scent of expensive leather, she noticed that the furnishings appeared new.
"Is this new? How often do you and Edward fly?"
"Yes, we had to replace the one that Edward was using when he was captured. And we fly quite often," he answered guiding to the rear of the compartment. "It's rare that we would stay in one place for a week but since Edward's return with your sister and your arrival at the mansion, I've had the luxury of remaining at the mansion for several days."
"Gabe," she asked with concern, "will we be separated often?"
"We will never separate. When I travel, I want you to be with me," he finished as they approached the end of the walkway and he opened the door to the left. "This is one of two sleeping compartments. This is ours and the other would be used by Edward and your sister."
"Do you mean that I will always get to travel with you?" she asked excitedly.
Pulling her into his arms, he pressed her close to him and said, "When I realized that we were given a second chance, I vowed to never lose you and that includes even for temporary work assignments. I want to find you close to me whenever I take a break and especially when I'm ready for bed." He added leaning his face close to hers. "Don't you feel the same?"
"Yes," she whispered as he barely moved his lips over hers. "Definitely."
"Gabe," she breathed when he released her lips, "When does the plane take off?"
"Any minute," he answered holding her head against his heart while stroking his fingers up and down her back.
"Do we start our new life together today?" she asked shyly.
"Tonight is just for us," he answered with a kiss to the top of her head. "But I want to wait before changing you."
"Why?" she asked pulling back to look at him.
"So we can have time to enjoy each other just like we had originally planned. Even when you agreed to change eight years ago, you wanted to wait awhile before actually becoming one of my kind."
"That's because I had a brother and sister that needed me. Now, I just need you. I want to be with you." She turned around in his arms so he could not see her confession in her face. "Gabe, I don't want to wait and take a chance on losing you."
"Just a few days, baby," he whispered against her hair. "Give me three days to enjoy you as a human and then I'll change you and we can wait out the three transformation days before we return to the mansion."
"Wait out where exactly?"
"Oh, it's not going to be that easy," he said with a playful slap to her bottom. "Aren't women supposed to be inherently devious? You were absolutely transparent."
"You doubt that I'm really a woman?" she teased while tentatively rubbing back against his groin.
"Oh, you're definitely woman," he responded by cupping one breast in his hand and stroking her through the fabric of her dress. "I'm just searching for a hint of wickedness in you," he added while moving his other hand down her abdomen to the apex of her thighs.
"Think you'll find it there?" she said with a shuddering breath.
"I know I'll find it there," he said with an arrogant smile. "I tasted the evidence last night."
"Oh," was all she could say and dropped her eyes in shyness.
"Don't be shy with me," he emphasized every word by pulling her body back into his so that she could feel the evidence of his desire.
"I won't once I'm, you know, used to this," she said turning her face to him.
Effortlessly spinning her in his arms, Gabriel pulled her close to him while still being able to see her face. "Alena, there are things that I know. Don't ask me to explain how, but I have perfect knowledge of these facts and I'm never wrong," he stated. "An example of that knowledge is the fact that I know you were made for me. I'm sorry that you sacrificed so much to raise your brother and sister but forces beyond our control deemed that you would belong to me."
"Jeez Gabe," she said taking a step back from him. "Are you saying that my brother had to suffer his illness so you would get a virgin?"
"No! And out of curiosity," he asked in frustration, "do you really believe that I would mean that?"
Shaking her head, Alena apologized, "I'm sorry and no you wouldn't. What did you mean?"