|Here There Be Dragons
Author: imagine.write.thrive PM
In the car accident that killed her parents, Carmel Nolan was saved by someone, or something. The problem is, she didn't remember it. Enter Drake Baine. Add a little Dragon's Blood, the Mark, an ancient curse, and you've got a romance.Rated: Fiction M - English - Fantasy/Drama - Chapters: 7 - Words: 24,634 - Reviews: 19 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 30 - Updated: 07-26-11 - Published: 05-18-11 - id: 2915765
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
When I woke up the next morning, I could feel the head of the fireplace on my back. I rolled over, expecting to find Drake sleeping next to me. But I was alone. My arm stretched out and searched the bed for him, only to be greeted by cold silk sheets. Frowning, in my half asleep state, I sat up. I rubbed my eyes, yawning. Instinctively, I clutched the sheets over my torso when I heard the door open. But I knew, logically, that it was just Drake.
"Finally, you're awake," he smiled. He came over and put a small trey with a coffee cup, cream, and sugar on it on the nightstand. He leaned down and kissed me softly.
I smiled up at him, "What time is it?"
My eyes widened, "Oh my god," I hadn't slept until noon for a long time. "You could have woken me up."
"And not be able to see your sweet, peaceful smile? I don't think so. Plus, we were up kind of late last night."
I felt a blush creep up my neck, "Yeah, I guess we were." I pause, "Speaking of which, um, did you use-"
I let out a sigh of relief, "Thank god."
"However, might I suggest a different form of birth control? I felt a bit like a party favor."
I giggled, "You kind of were." But when he scowled at me, I quickly sobered up, "Tell you what. I will get on the pill if you get tested."
"For my peace of mind. Please? Because...I know that last night was not your first time."
"Alright." he kissed my cheek, "I'll do anything for you."
"Mmmm...right now, can you just find me a shirt to wear? I feel, um, a bit exposed."
"Sure." He stood up again and moved to his closet; he stepped inside for a minute, then reappeared, holding a long sleeved, button up shirt, "Is this alright?"
"That's fine." I looked up at him, "Can I use your shower?"
"Absolutely, my dear. It's just through that door," he pointed in the direction, "Shall I go put your clothes in the washer?"
I nodded at him, "That would be great."
He kissed me again; I waited until he left the room before I got out of bed and moved towards the bathroom. I was a little bit sore, but the hot water felt good. I washed the flour and cookie dough out of my hair, and the dried sweat off of my body. I came out smelling like Drake. After drying myself off, I put my hair up in a towel and put the shirt on; I rolled up the sleeves to my elbows and went back out into the bedroom. He was sitting at a large oak desk that I hadn't noticed before. I walked over and wrapped my arms around his neck from behind him.
"You look so intense," I whispered in his ear.
He smiled, "Not really. Are you hungry?"
"Um...now that you mention it, yes."
"Do you want to go out?"
"I can't." I said. "No panties," I whispered in his ear.
"...huh. You know, funnily enough, that's not a problem for me." He turned and pulled me into his lap.
I put an arm around his neck and crossed my legs, "I bet it's not. However, I don't want to corrupt any small children."
"I see. Well I supposed I can't argue with that, can I?"
I kissed his nose, "I guess not. So what are you going to feed me?"
"I could run and get something."
"Or...we could order Chinese food."
His nose scrunched in disgust.
"Oh no. No, don't tell me that you don't like take out food."
"I'm not sure. I've actually never had it."
I gasped, "Say it ain't so, Joe!"
He quirked an eyebrow, "What?"
"Oh. Um. Shoeless Joe Jackson. Red Sox. Baseball. 1919 World Series. Anyway, that's not the point." I slid off of his lap and went to the side table. I sat down on my bed and picked up my phone. There were voicemails and texts from Lydia; but I didn't look at them. I called and placed an order at my favorite Chinese place. Then I went through the messages; mostly she was wondering where I was, if I was okay. Drake had turned back to whatever he was doing, so I went over to the French doors and stepped outside onto the balcony - even though it was snowing - and called Lydia back.
"Carmel! Oh my god! Where the hell have you been?" Lydia said.
"Hi to you too." I murmured.
"Sorry, hi. Now where the hell have you been?"
"Uh...with Drake. It's a long story and I'll tell you later. Promise."
"Are you okay? He didn't like...turn into a crazy kidnapper, did he?"
I laughed, "No, nothing like that. I just- we were up late. Talking and stuff." It wasn't exactly a lie. We did talk, we were up late. I just didn't go into detail about the 'and stuff'.
"I see. Well, when are you going to be home?"
"We just ordered food, so...probably a few hours. And then, I swear to god, I'll debrief you."
"You'd better. And it better be good."
"Oh, it is," I told her, "I'll see you later."
"Okay. Love you, Cary."
"You too, Lyd." I hung up the phone and went back inside. I was shivering by then, so I crawled back onto the bed and shimmied my way under the freshly made bed. "Drake?" I asked.
He turned and looked at me, "Yes?"
"I reaaaaaaaaaally like your bed."
"Well that's very good. I like that you like my bed."
"Not much. Why?"
"Can you come warm me up?"
He quirked an eyebrow but stood up anyway. Moving towards the bed, I admired the way his hips moved slightly from side to side as he walked. Wearing just his pajama bottoms, it was easy to appreciate his muscular figure. He got into the bed next to me and wrapped his arms around me, "How does your Mark feel?"
I shrugged, "It hurt for a little bit when I was in the shower. Kind of stings now. But it's not bad. Why?"
"Because I can't feel it pulling me to you anymore."
"Is...that good? Or bad?"
He thought for a minute, "It's both, I guess.
"Can you explain it to me yet?"
"Do you want the full story, or just an explanation for the Mark?"
"The full story. Please." I sat up and poured coffee and cream into the cup that was on the side table, then picked it up and turned back to him.
"Alright." He sat up straight. "First let me start by telling you that I have been eighteen years old for the past...five hundred years."
My eyebrows shot up, "Continue."
"Well, this business with the Mark all started...thousands of years ago. On my eighteenth birthday, I developed this tattoo," he turned his shoulder to for me to see a tattoo just like my glowy-dragon, "It started to glow, I noticed. When I told my father of this, he told me of my family's history. Our family was - is - part of an ancient race of dragon. The very first of my ancestors, a dragon, fell in love with a human woman, and she with him. Though they both knew that it would be impossible to be together. She was...a witch, I guess. She worked tirelessly to find a way for them to be together. Most of her potions never worked; she found ways to turn his scales to different colors, to change the size of his claws, and such things. One night, she tried something knew, telling him that if it didn't work, she was going to give up. And that night, he was turned into a human. They were together only once before he was turned back into a dragon. As they made love, this woman received a Mark, just like the one you have. But not not long after, he was hunted down and killed."
I gasped, "Oh no!"
He smiled but continued, "About nine months later, the woman gave birth to a baby boy, who in turn got the Mark when he was eighteen, and so on down the line. Only men were ever born into the family. Except for one. A girl named-"
"Alison Duncan." I finished.
He looked at me, "How did you know?"
"She's my biological mother," I told him softly.
"Of course, it makes sense now." he smiled, "Moving on. There is only one perfect mate for each member of this family. And after a few generations of the women only bearing sons, this woman - the first - cast a spell to make it easier for the men to find their mate. Which is why, when you turned sixteen, your Mark showed up. Like I told you last night, it acts as a beacon. The girl's Mark calls to her mate, no matter where he is. And he literally can't stop until he finds her. It's actually odd when it takes longer than a few weeks to bond, because the pull for the girl and the boy is so strong."
"I see," I said. I leaned over and kissed him, "Well now we've...what is it? Bonded?" he nodded, "Okay." A pause, "Last night...you implied that my Mark was a beacon for something...or someone else."
"Yes. The second half of the story."
The doorbell rang downstairs; I sighed, "Hold that thought." I grabbed my credit card out of my purse and rolled out of bed. I returned a few minutes later and got back into bed with Drake. I opened a carton of chicken and handed him a fork and a pair of chopsticks. I settled into my spot again and waited for him to continue.
"When I was eighteen, before I knew that there was only one perfect person for me, I fell in love - or, now that I look back, it was more lust than love - with a woman. Morgan. She was twelve years older than I was, and unbeknownst to me, she was married. After a year or so, I finally did learn that she was married. But not just to anyone. To a sorcerer. To put it simply, he was mad as hell when he found out that I was sleeping with his wife. And to make a short story even shorter, my mate - you - is being, well, hunted. So he put a curse on you, that you wouldn't be born for five hundred years, and when you finally received your Mark, it would act as a beacon to me and to bounty hunters."
"...oh." I paused, "Which is why you're the Protector."
"So...now that we, um, you know...does that mean people are going to immediately show up and try to kill me?"
"Not right away, no. And when they do, I'll be there." he paused, "Though I have to be perfectly honest, I don't know if this city will be a safe place for you for very long."
"...would they hurt Lydia?"
"No. Their objective is you, and only you."
"I see. So what do they get if they kill me?"
"Wealth, power, eternal life."
I took a bite of my rice and chewed for longer than I needed to; thinking.
"Are you alright?"
"Hm? Oh. Yeah. It's just...a lot to take in."
He nodded, "I understand."
"Yeah." I paused, "So..you're part dragon?"
"I'm all dragon." He paused and then spoke again, answering the question I was about to ask, "Yes, I can turn into a dragon-dragon."
"Will you show me some time?"
I nodded and looked him over. "Now eat your food."
He looked at it warily, then back at me, "Are you sure?"
"Yes, Drake, I'm sure. It's good, I promise." When he didn't move to eat it, I rolled my eyes, "Oh for god's sake, Drake." I speared a piece of chicken with one of my chopsticks, dipped it in the rice, and held it up to him, "Open."
He sighed and reluctantly opened his mouth; I put the chicken in, "Good. Now close your mouth." He did so and I pulled the chopstick out, "Good. Now chew up it."
He did so, slowly. A small, reluctant smile played across his lips as he chewed.
"Told ya." I leaned forward and placed a kiss on his lips.
Swallowing, he nodded, "Yes you did."
We ate in almost complete silence, with the occasional smile and kiss. I felt close to him; not just because I was physically close, but I felt...emotionally close. For the first time since the accident, I truly felt at peace. And I felt safe, which was something that, even at the best of times, I had never really felt. It was nice. But I stopped myself from sinking too far into the blissful, intimate, safe feeling that I had. Because, as they say, all good things must come to an end. It was my way of protecting myself, in anticipation of the time that it would end. Not that I wanted it to ever end, but you couldn't really argue with the logic that good things come and go. Or at least I couldn't.
As we finished lunch, we both wordlessly slipped under the warm covers and into each others embraces. The wonders of his chest never ceased to amaze me. His skin was soft and almost hot to the touch; he smelled like Old Spice - my Dad used to smell like that, it was comforting; my fingertips got the smallest of tingles as I slid them across his chest.
"As much as I would love to stay here all day," I placed a small kiss on one of his pecks, "I have to go."
"Because I promised Lydia I'd bee home in a couple of hours. And that was...an hour ago."
"So you have an hour."
"Minus the twenty minutes it takes to get from here to there."
"Alright, then you have forty minutes."
I shook my head and sat up.
He raised an eyebrow, "You don't have forty minutes?"
"No. I mean, yes. I just...don't want to spend the forty minutes we have..doing, you know." I leaned over and kissed his cheek, "So get your mind out of the gutter."
His other eyebrow shot up to meet the other one, "It's not." he paused, "What do you mean?"
"I mean...you're thinking about...well, sex."
"How can you tell?"
"Well...you're eyes are here," I pointed at my chest, "Instead of here," I pointed upwards.
"Ah," his eyes lifted to my face, "I see."
I smiled and kissed his cheek, "It's cute, though."
We spent the next forty-five minutes talking about everything from the curse, to the Mark, to my parents. And when it was time to take me home, Drake didn't complain a bit. He walked me to the door of Lydia's house, kissed me gently, told me he'd call me later, and then left.
Ahhh...the big reveal chapter. I'm afraid, though, that it probably worked out better in my head. I have, em, problems? I guess, getting my ideas down on paper. Or..a word document, in this case. In this chapter, Drake sort of just...glossed over the key points in the whole dragon/Mark/Curse history lesson, and they will be explained more fully in chapters to come. I hope it makes sense to everyone, and if it doesn't, well...you know where the review button is. ;)
As always, any sort of suggestions, nicely-put critique, questions, or any thoughts you have are always accepted and appreciated.
And now I'm off to bed, because it's almost three in the morning, and I have lots of things to do tomorrow. Goodbye, my dearies.
P.S. Go check out my newest story~ Naturally Yours.