WARNING: The following fanfic contains explicit nonconsensual sex.
Don't get me in trouble by reading it if you are underage. Don't
get yourself bent out of shape by reading it if you can't handle
sex and violence.

Darkness before the Dawn

a Vampire Hunter D fanfic by Cathy Krusberg

There was an inn. There was a woman.

There was always a woman. And the way they always looked at him.

He was used to it, insofar as one could become accustomed to such
a thing. The women's rounded eyes and the men's narrowed ones, scents
of lust and scents of fear, separate and mingled, strong and heady.
Those odors filled the inn's main room, tainted the food, stronger
than the alcohol -- although that said very little indeed for their

She'd offered him another glass of wine -- repeatedly. She'd even
suggested something stronger, with a sly smile that more than hinted
she'd see that he wouldn't drink it alone -- nor be alone afterward.
And when he headed up the stairs for his room, she was suddenly
beside him with a lighted candle -- totally superfluous for him, but
no point in advertising that. She pressed the candlestick on him,
and taking it from her hand gave him the opening he needed to slip
through the doorway into his room and gently shove her the other
way -- before quickly locking the door behind him. He leaned against
it and closed his eyes for a moment. The flesh of his left palm
rippled into a grotesque face.

"You _could_ have grabbed her ass," the symbiot pointed out. "It's
not like she exactly would have minded. It's not like _I_ exactly
would have minded, if you know what I mean."

D glanced about the room, making sure it was otherwise untenanted --
not a difficult task, given its small confines. He set the candle on
the nightstand, laid aside his hat and shrugged off his cape.

"It's not that women don't want you," the symbiot continued. "You've
got such a pretty face, even those pointy ears and that pasty
complexion don't scare 'em off. It's that charisma, you know. From
your, ahem, your dear old dad's side of the family."

"Shut up," D said softly. He hung his sword beside the cape, then
shucked off his knife belt and otherwise undressed as much as he
ever did. He pulled back the covers, plumped the pillow (eliciting a
sneeze, then a sniff, from the symbiot), and stretched out on the
creaking bed.

"Sucks being alone, doesn't it?" the symbiot said unsympathetically.
"Oh, but I forgot -- that's _exactly_ what you'd do if that pretty
girl was here, too."

"Shut up," D growled.

"Have I ever lied to you?" the symbiot continued. "Ever so much as
breathed a hint of a falsehood? Not where it counts. And you know
why you've got ab-so-lute-ly NOBODY but me? Itglmm--!"

D had slammed his left palm into the pillow -- the first time he'd
attempted that particular method of stifling the symbiot. It had a
very satisfying effect.

"Fine," it snarled, when he finally moved his hand. "_I'm_ turning in
for the night. Any creepy-crawlies bother you before sunrise, you can
take care of them by yourself." And it sucked itself down to
invisibility behind the barrier of his palm.

D pinched out the taper on the nightstand. His eyes had been closed
for only a few moments when he fell asleep.

He wasn't sure how he segued from sleep to wakefulness. It was his
nature to wake quickly, without disorientation; indeed, the few seconds
it might take a human to waken could be a fatal delay for him. But his
efforts to muddle through his confusion were forestalled by the
realization that he was not alone.

"Hi there," a sultry voice purred, and his adrenaline surged as those
eyes with pupils like darkness gazed into his own. "You looked so
lonely...  I thought I'd sneak in and offer you a little--"

D closed his eyes. "Go away."

"--companionship." Her hand stroked his cheek, and his eyes snapped
open. She was sitting on the bed beside him. A candle was burning on
the nightstand. "Don't tell me a big, handsome fellow like you is too
tired for a little fun."

"Thought I locked the door," D muttered, his mind still trying to
drag itself to wakefulness.

"You did, love." She held up a small brass key between her fingers.
"But now that I'm here, I don't need this anymore." She slipped it
under the pillow, stretching out beside him with alarming languor and
throwing an arm over him before he could move away.

Confined by the girl's embrace and the covers, D couldn't avoid the
almost suffocating kiss she pressed on him.

"Your lips are cold," she told him gently. "Cold lips, warm heart?"

D levered his legs off the edge of the bed but underestimated the
tenacity of his visitor's hold. Overbalanced, the lot of them slid
to the floor, a mass of startled dhampir, tangled covers, and
giggling girl.

"You're falling for me already?" she said, poking a soft nibble at
D's ear. At that touch D licked his lips, exhaling hoarsely between
lengthening fangs. The girl saw the motion and pounced to kiss him
again, but this time her aim was more awkward, balanced as she was
on top of D's struggling form; her teeth caught D's lip, and at the
same time, those razor tips caught hers.

At the pain she stifled a little shriek -- more of surprise than
fear -- but then the hold on her lower lip grew both tighter and
more painful. She pressed into it, and D was so startled that,
bloodthirst notwithstanding, he recoiled.

The woman actually looked disappointed.

"Come to bed and let's see if we can't find something hard besides
the floor," she urged. She half dragged him, still tangled in
bedclothes, back onto the mattress, where his fangs refused to
retract. Unfortunately, the only way away from the mass of covers
was toward the girl, and she took D's disinclination toward bondage
as a sign he was succumbing to her blandishments. One of her hands
 went under his chin to tip it up. D's eyes went a little wide
when the other hand slid down to his crotch -- and they narrowed
ominously as he realized it did so _inside_ his pants.

The girl's nose nearly touched his. "Don't you think candlelight
is romantic?"

"No," growled D, and he swept his hand over to pinch out the taper's
flame, then rolled away just far enough to escape that invasive
touch. Whether from anger, bloodthirst, or lust, his eyes glowed
blue in the darkness -- and at that sight, finally, the woman
recoiled. She would have screamed if D hadn't captured her head,
one hand over her mouth, before she could let out the inhalation
that was nearly a shriek in itself. At her struggles, the color
of his eyes took on an uncanny touch of embittered fury -- not
even a woman who crept uninvited into his bed wanted to stay once
she saw a hint of anything other than his physical beauty.

"I won't deny you," D whispered. "I won't deny you what you came for.
I've always had a soft spot for ladies in need ... of a strong man..."

She was shaking. The darkness was bad enough, but worse were those
two impossible blue beams that seemed to rake through her. She tried
to shake her head, but it was pinioned in that grip as strong and
cold as iron. She whimpered softly, pulled at the hand over her
mouth. It came away, to be replaced by lips and teeth and tongue,
pressing, probing, thrusting, wet, hard, _sharp_ -- her head fell
back and she nearly gagged as the very breath was sucked out of her
throat when the kiss -- if one could call it that -- broke, the
cool mouth pulled away as forcefully as it had been pushed onto
her own.

"You won't scream." It was something of a whisper, something of a
growl, something that seemed to emanate from glowing blue caverns
that sucked to themselves her mind, her will, her soul -- but not
her fear. "You won't scream. You won't make a sound, not a move,
unless I will it. You came for that -- you came -- "

_And so will I._

But that was not how it began. The caverns dipped away, left only
darkness for her own eyes, and at her neck was a chill, a touch
like a toad's, soft and cool and moist. The touch brought forth
an unbidden shiver and, despite the command of silence, a gasp
at the pain that followed a moment later. Her eyes grew warm,
and tears began to streak her face -- from pain, from fear, from
a terrible sense of closeness to the unknown, impossible, unnatural.
And yet -- it horrified her when she realized it -- her arms came
up of their own accord to pull that form closer. Whether her body
knew some perverse pleasure at that act or simply sought solace
in holding something, anything, even the monster whose bed she
shared, she never knew, never wanted to know. She moaned, and a
hand snaked up to her mouth again, reminding her of the power
this terrible creature had.

D drank hungrily, caring little what damage he worked in the
process. His thoughts were not as coherent as _bitch deserved it;_
they were wrapped in the power he felt, power he had held back
far too long and with too little appreciation from the creatures
whose blood he spared. It was so warm and rich and so very, very
good -- like drinking the world, sucking down souls, flames, the
heart of the boiling sun itself between his lips to suffuse his
veins. There could never be enough, not until the whole universe
was within him. But hands clawed at his back -- D cursed the
weakness of his powers; a true Noble could have forced her perfect
obedience or at least her unconsciousness so she wouldn't distract
him. But oh -- he mustn't drink too much, mustn't kill her, at
least not yet. She'd come for more than this, hadn't she?

_Yes, I'll come too._

He left the wound open -- it was trickling rather than gushing now,
and the scent teased him, a scent made sharper by the girl's terror.
D pulled himself out of her embrace, bedsprings creaking softly as
his weight shifted. She seemed blind in the darkness, eyes wide but
unfocused, not tracking his movements. He kissed her fiercely,
pressing her jaws apart, sucking her tongue past the razors of his
teeth so they drew thin lines of fear-spiced blood. He licked them
away, holding her head to him with one hand while the other explored
the front of her dress -- felt the hardened nipples, tore away the
fabric that covered them, rubbed one and then the other until they
were like berries rolling between his fingertips. The woman struggled
for breath and he let her have it, pulling his mouth from hers to
attack one nipple, then the other, with lips and tongue, fingers
alternating with teeth in pressing, crushing, those buds of
half-resistant flesh.

The girl's body moved against his -- a protest, a welcome, a nervous
tic -- a distraction, and D's teeth clung where they were as he eased
her to lie beneath him, clung even as he ripped away the remainder of
her gown. She wore nothing beneath it. His hand ran down a belly that
tensed at his touch; his fingertips pressed into curls of pubic hair,
a forest, a jungle that presaged greater heat at its heart. His
fingers pressed further and further down, exploring, and found a mass
of slick wetness. She had been prepared, oh yes, ready to take on a
man, and D lifted his mouth from her nipple to taste the musky
slickness that clung to his fingertips.

"Eager," he said softly. "Your body is eager for me." The same hand
pushed her legs apart, probed what lay beneath those wirelike hairs.
The girl's throat made a small sound as he stroked the length of that
smooth slit, explored the folds of flesh so hot and soft and pressed
them until the whole area seemed to rebound like a spring as her hips
bucked against him.

"That pleases you, doesn't it?" His voice was a whisper. The girl
shook her head, tears starting down her face again, and D shook his
own head in response. "Don't tell me 'no,' girl. Your body says
different -- it said different when you first saw me --" He forced
another hard kiss on her, cutting off his own words, as his fingers
probed lower and further inward, testing the waters prior to a more
satisfying penetration.

She was breathing harder now, how much from her body's longing and
how much from her fear was hard to say, but those raspy breaths
echoed D's own, and his member seemed to throb in time with them.
Propping himself on one arm, he used the other hand -- by now quite
slick -- to unfasten his belt and then his pants.

"No --" It was not even a whisper, barely a gasp, and D barely
restrained himself from backhanding her to silence -- the mood
he was in, that would probably break her jaw.

"Shut up," he told her instead, grasping her face and shaking it.
"You'll stay for what you came for. Won't you?"

Maybe she nodded. The air was so cool and her body so warm and
giving where he rubbed himself against her. _I could enjoy this,_
he thought, propping himself on his arms, pressing his erection
between her belly and his. _I *am* enjoying this..._

Her breathing was her only movement, but it was enough to make
his member twitch for more. It drooled, impatient, eager to nestle
only within her, and D moaned softly with the frustration of it
all -- that she had no choice but to give to him, and he could
never take enough of her. He growled and clumsily attacked his
pants, peeling as far as he had the patience to, kicking them
the rest of the way, slamming a knee between the woman's legs
when she tried to skitter to the other side of the bed.

"Stay right there," he told her softly, and he licked the tears
off her face. They were salty and bitter, and he let her push
his tongue away with a cold trembling palm. It didn't matter.
Her thighs were warm, and he eased his other leg between them,
almost shaking himself, belly tense, erection more than stiff.
He _wanted_, and he lowered himself and made a few careful,
exploratory half-thrusts that served only to tease before he
found her opening and pressed himself in.

The rush of that tight-fitting warmth nearly made him pass out
for a moment, and the girl's whine -- of pain? of fear? of
pleasure? -- was overshadowed by his groan of light-headed
astonishment. There were no words for the way she held him, no
words for the sensation as her channel tightened in waves, and
her body shifted around it. D pushed further in, gasping, and
could restrain himself only for moments before he began pounding
into her, bloodlust forgotten. Wild sensations thrummed through
him, and his body seemed a thing independent of his will,
driving harder and faster against the form beneath him. His
breath came in ragged gasps, a counterpoint to the girl's soft
squeaks. Perhaps those noises were what drove him over the edge;
his fists grasped masses of the sheet as he finally spurted into
her, buttocks clenched as if to wring out the last superheated
drops. The girl made a noise beneath him, a shrill, hoarse sound
that couldn't, that _couldn't_ come from a human throat. It hurt
his ears and he winced against it, squeezing his eyes shut. The
noise grew louder, and his eyes flew open --

And he was awake, truly awake. The noise came again: cockcrow,
bright as the sun's rays that lanced through the window onto the
blankets where he lay in bed, propped on his elbows -- alone.

His fingers still clutched the sheet. He slowly unclenched them,
never so glad to see the sun, to hear a rooster crowing its song
to the dawn, to run a hand over the bedclothes at his side and feel
their blessed coolness. He sank down onto his chest, breath slowing
a little.

"Wow, musta been a hot date," the symbiot observed once D's fingers
were clear of its mouth. "Not like anything you'd ever have the guts
to get in _real_ life."

"Thank goodness," D muttered. He was soaked with sweat and other
fluids and just beginning to feel the chill of it. He stretched out,
pushing the pillow up to the headboard. His hand encountered a small,
hard object, and he seized it, looked at it, and dropped it as if it

It was a key.


Thanks to Erin and Kay for being supportive beta readers, and for
their useful suggestions.

Feedback welcome.