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A Little Taste

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They fuck in a forgotten coatroom at the Wickery Bridge Restoration Fundraiser before everything goes to hell.

It's bigger than the average closet but not overly spacious, and Alaric presses Damon through the fabric sea of overcoats and and rain-slickers and decorated military dress-jackets until they run up against a collection of old furs at the back. It smells of mothballs and long-departed animal.

“Musty,” Damon says, breaking through their bruising kiss, his arched eyebrows up. “Kinky.”

They're a little tipsy on good whiskey but neither had gotten nearly enough of it to stave off their myriad cravings. Got to refill at the bar only so many times in polite company. At council meetings, no matter how poorly disguised as a party, it was frowned on for them to come in slurringly drunk, more's the pity. Would have made all the blathering easier to swallow.

So before they had to go and act like responsible adults obsessed with the vampire-free-town political platform, Alaric had nudged Damon aside with his eyes. They strolled a long hallway, and at the end of it Alaric, who had pre-scouted, opened a small side door and dragged Damon in amongst the coats.

There'd been no light save for the slivers under the doorjamb but Damon could see perfectly and Alaric didn't need to. He pinned Damon back against the door with his mouth.

“Let's do this instead,” Alaric had pronounced when he finally needed air (Damon didn't). “If I have to listen to the pillars of our community for the next two hours it's going to be with the knowledge that I've just fucked your undead brains out amid some historically important all-weather wear.”

Damon's eyes had nearly provided enough light to see by. “I could approve this turn of events,” he'd hummed considerately, hipbones aligning with Alaric's, arousal and amusement evident in body and tone. “Though I'd feel terrible. Mrs. Marchwood was just about to share her much-coveted recipe for Cream pie. It's awfully rude for me to disappear on her, Ric. Where's your sense of Mystic Falls civic pride?” but that was when Alaric had shut Damon's drawling mouth up with his tongue and back-stepped him until they hit fur.

Now Damon's still humming beneath him, already rock-hard against Alaric's thigh. Alaric wants to set fists on each side of Damon's collar and rip until his fancy shirt rends in a rain of pearlescent buttons but he can't do that, not unless Damon's prepared to show up at the council meeting in a fur coat. Alaric knows well enough not to tempt him.

He compromises by running his hands up under Damon's shirt, across the impossibly flat planes of his abs, the cut vee of his hipbones that makes Alaric hungry in a way he thinks must be a little like how vampires feel about blood.

He kisses Damon again, too hard, wondering where all this kissing's coming from. Fucking they did just fine and regularly enough but kissing was more rare, sometimes completely absent. Damon doesn't seem to mind, doesn't offer commentary for once. Just responds with a mouth wet and hot and open to Alaric, his twisty tongue intrigued, as always, by deviations from the norm.

Alaric skirts the furs and slams Damon up against the wall between two coat-racks. He has his hand on Damon's belt and undoes the buckle with practiced ease. Damon's long impressive cock is waiting, straining, and Alaric again feels a shuddering of unquenchable need that is dangerously close to bloodlust. He's been spending too much time around Damon. Too much time talking to and taking and having Damon.

As usual, Damon seems half-capable of reading his mind. Probably can. He says, sounding as close as Damon got to delight, which is half-surprised and half-pleased, “How positively vampiric you are tonight.”

Alaric returns a nonverbal reply. In the faint light he watches Damon extend one fine-turned wrist, shirt cuff rolled back over the blue vein, his lips turned and teasing. “Are you sure you don't want a little taste? It'll put you right over the top.”

Since Damon expects him to refuse as ever, since Alaric's pulse is a crazed drumbeat of blood already behind his ear, since there's something unspeakably wrong and exquisitely excellent about the idea of attending the impending council meeting having not only just fucked a vampire but sipped from one, since he's an addict of adrenaline and other things: since Alaric is in the mood to commit exquisitely wrong acts, he shocks them both by nodding.

“Sure,” he says, seizing the milk-pale wrist. Tries for nonchalant. “One condition. If you turn me I get to tear your goddamned head off when I wake up. Then I'll go for a long walk in the sun.”

“Sheesh.” Damon rolls his eyes, which have gone extra-electric. “And they call me melodramatic. Don't worry your pretty little conscience. Like I'd want you moaning and moralizing at me for the next millenia.” But there's enough discomfort in the disclaimer that he adds, muttering, “Rather turn Liz Forbes. At least she respects my obvious cunning genius,” and then he's tearing a neat hole right at the pulse point with careful fangs.

Minute rivulets of blood gather and bead there, scarlet on snow, and Alaric is astonished at his own lack of repulsion. Not ready to visit that line of thought yet. Regards the bloodied offering. God, his life is so fucked.

“Your word, Damon.”

“Oh, does that have a good credit score again?” But when Alaric slants a look at him, Damon's regard is intense through the sarcasm, his anticipation barely contained. He nods into Alaric's gaze, and he's either as sincere as Alaric's ever seen or putting on a performance worthy of an Oscar.

So he ducks his head and has Damon's skin and Damon's blood between his lips before he can make himself think about it again.

Ambrosia. That's thought Alaric thinks next.

It's cliché, yeah, but he's spent a godawful long time studying history. Spent years buried in ancient cultures along with Americana, and the Greek's food of the gods is what this is.

Ambrosia made the gods strong, magical, impervious to anything. It was the best and finest substance, fit only for the consumption of divine creatures and a few chosen favorites. It sang through your body and turned you immortal. It whispered the secrets of the world.

His grip tightens on Damon's arm and his mouth tightens and from somewhere far away he thinks he hears Damon groan. Alaric swallows more and goes to his knees with it, vaguely aware that he's dragging them both from wall to wood-planked floor.

He's never had vampire blood save in times of body-crushed, live-saving desperation and then the experience had felt medicinal, the way a patient who really needed a painkiller wouldn't get much of a buzz from their pills.

But now he's whole and healthy and drinking from Damon who tastes better than all the drinks Alaric's drunk and all the drugs he's tried or heard about besides. Damon is early-morning coffee, the sneaked cigarette of a quitting smoker, the first drink after work. Damon's relaxing and rushing like the best bong hit, Damon's more freeing and buoying than heroin, Damon's trippier and better at expanding minds than acid, Damon thuds through his heart and jacks it up quicker than cocaine.

Every inch of Alaric is alive, he can feel every organ working and how able and ready the strong muscles of his arms are, how well-built his honed body is. He's harder than he's been since puberty or ever and never quite needed so badly to do something about it.

He's completely on fire and might start screaming about that soon.

Damon's hand fisting in his hair just above the neckline. Tugging Alaric's greedy mouth free, first gently, then with more force. Alaric never does know when he's had enough, always needs to be reminded.

He comes away choking. He's kneeling next to Damon on the floor. The coatroom seems bold with colors though it is dark. He wipes Damon's blood from his chin with the back of one trembling hand.

“Whoa, there, Nosferatu,” Damon says. The cut on his wrist is already closing, healing. Soon there will be no sign of Alaric's drink. “You wanna go easy at first.”

“Holy fuckin' shit,” says Alaric, still seeing red-painted stars, panting. “You should have told me.”

It's tricky to know whether Alaric means he deserved the slow-down warning beforehand or that Damon should have long before told him what drinking vampire blood could feel like. Neither of them are quite sure.

“I did say a little taste,” Damon points out at last, defensive, “Not to treat me like a bottle of Oban.” He tilts his head, the spectacularly interesting lines of his face arranging varied emotions but finally settling on curiosity. “You liked it, though. Tell me how you liked drinking my evil vampire essence, Ric.”

“Fuck you,” Alaric says with feeling, but by then he's launched himself over and onto Damon, colliding them together. He doesn't waste any time, he doesn't abide time. He has Damon's jeans down and kicked off at record speed, and Alaric doesn't even bother to take off his own, just rolls them low over his knees.

He's calling Damon every name in his considerable book of names, jerking Damon's cock in one over-tight fist, making Damon arc up into him. He rides the inexhaustible roll of Damon's hips. His body is alight, buzzing, Damon's blood in his veins still coursing, a supernatural intoxicant of uniquely crazy vampire vintage.

“Goddammit, I feel so fuckin' good,” he hears himself murmur into the crook of Damon's neck. “You feel so fuckin' good.”

Hadn't really meant to say that aloud but doesn't think it matters much at this point. Maybe he owes it to Damon anyway since he's starting to pry Damon apart with his fingers and fingertips and they don't have much by way of lube, only spit and sweat and the scent of imminent sex.

“We could do this more often,” Damon says from beneath Alaric, head tipped back and wide eyes gone wider. He almost looks guileless. For a moment their heated movement pauses. “Whenever you wanted, man.”

Alaric has to shake his head a little and refocus on pushing fingers into Damon because that -- the offer of more blood, the open offer -- now that he know what it feels like is too much to consider while he's still electrified by it. They both know how little control he has when it comes to compulsion, ironically enough.

So Alaric can't answer quite yet. Instead he readies Damon as best he can considering they're bare-assed in the Lockwood's coatroom and he's wielding the erection of a lifetime and his heart is the Energizer battery bunny.

At least Damon's vampire healing can prove useful, and Damon deserves to be fucked a little raw for not fully warning him about the blood. Alaric tells him that much, and Damon makes a low sound that's so irresistible Alaric has to push his thighs apart when he does it. Alaric's gripping and lifting and pulling Damon closer, sliding them across the wood, lining them up; then with one sure thrust he buries himself too deep in Damon.

Goes deeper, pushing past the satisfying moan from Damon's tight-twisted mouth. Doesn't stop, won't stop, not until his cock is all the way in. There's a lot of Alaric, and they're usually a good bit slower than this, but Alaric just holds Damon down and drives himself forward, and Damon's eyes have turned tornado-gray, and his fingernails are scratching down Alaric's back, over his dress-shirt.

“Alaric,” says Damon, a touch wildly, but it's the best sound Alaric's ever heard and also the most encouraging, and then he's seated, fully sheathed. Damon a long, smooth-muscled length of pure sex under Alaric's weight, ink-black hair flying as he moves his head, sculpted legs locking in a vice-grip around Alaric's back and buttocks. Damon's teeth grit with pleasure and pain both, Damon's lips half-smirked and half-shocked.

Alaric held in tight, clenching heat while the sweat from their bodies makes them slick and stick together everywhere. It's so good just to be balls-deep in Damon that for a long moment Alaric considers torturing them both by just staying like that until the bell rings out for council-time.

Damon is writhing, trying to push back against Alaric, reverse-ride his cock. He's emitting delicious indecipherable noises and crystal-clear curses but Alaric holds still and steady over him like he's doing the world's most satisfying push-up until Damon stops squirming and gets it. Damon blinks, then turns his head and offers upturned lips.

With their mouths joined Alaric starts to move. He starts out with Damon's favorite kind of fucking, fast and hard and relentless. Their bodies meet in slapping heat, the floorboards beneath them groaning louder than they groan.

Alaric nails Damon to the wood with thrusts deep enough to rattle their teeth, nearly pulling out all the way before pushing Damon to retake him. The main difference this time is that he's kissing Damon throughout it and vampire blood like Viagra cut with steroids mated with amphetamines grown from opiates is in his veins.

Alaric's stamina has never been anything to sneeze at, even without a supernatural boost, which was one reason he and Damon got along so well. It's pretty much the main reason, if he's being honest. Alaric is a dependable partner in hunting all sorts of things and giving in to a good screw to top off the adrenaline rush afterward. Once he and Damon had come to that understanding, they'd become even better friends than their tentative attempts at it before. That had been a relief. To have a reliable fuck-and-kill buddy who was really on the same page was a rare thing indeed.

The first time they'd had sex, Alaric had bent Damon over the back of Damon's car on a thread of dirt road overlooking a farmhouse. Calling it sex was gracious. They'd been covered in gore and filth, and he'd found that grinding the blood out against Damon was a fantastic remedy for the overwhelming terror and triumph that followed a kill.

It had come to them as naturally as killing did. Maybe for other people it should have been awkward or been awkward afterward but after Alaric had fucked Damon over the car and then once more in the backseat they had never laughed more or more easily together.

They'd traded dirty jokes on the ride home -- Damon won, but his zingers spanned centuries, and some were admittedly creaky -- then they got cleaned up and laughed with other people at the Grill and got blindingly trashed and Damon had gone back to the loft with him and slept spent and naked in Alaric's bed.

After that they had sex whenever they damn well pleased, and to top off missions, and if that was a lot, who was to question the whims of adrenaline and stamina and how many things they had to kill with regularity?

Damon likes it rough and fast and deep just like this, and with his proud cock trapped between them and Alaric's unceasing drive he's on the edge already, eyes like saucer plates above where their mouths meet. But Alaric isn't finished yet, has ten minutes 'til the meeting and all the time in the world, could fuck Damon here in the sea of coats forever.

Alaric breaks away from kissing him, but just for a moment, just for air, and then to mouth at the length of Damon's neck, trying to suck bruises that will stain the ivory skin. As fast as he makes bloodied blossoms show on the pale column of Damon's throat they vanish.

Damon sweats like a living man but his smell has the tangy overture of copper, of blood, and tonight for the first time that excites Alaric. Alaric tries to lick up his scent.

Before Damon can come Alaric makes himself slow down. Steadies his marathon pulse and pistoning hips with deep breaths, striving for zen. When he pushes back in it's lazily, feeling every inch of himself and Damon and what it's like to be inside Damon.

He lets his hands slow-span the jut of Damon's hipbones and hold there and when he thrusts he means it, his eyes on Damon, his mouth, not letting Damon look away. Letting Damon know he can keep them here and doing this as long as he needs to. Damon's blood ensured that Alaric's mischievous horniness became elevated into something else.

This occurs to Alaric too late, and when it does he feels helpless and angry and exhilarated, all at once.

He speeds up again, catching Damon by surprise, and for a drawn-out three minutes that surely must be rattling the floors of the main party room down the hall Alaric just goes to town, fucks Damon breathless. Damon, who doesn't need to breathe.

But Damon still feels so he says, feelingly, “God, Ric--”

Alaric looks down at him, teeth clenched. He's too deep in Damon, too full-up with him. “Tell me why the blood. Tell the truth.” He's never been harder ever. He could fuck Damon forever.

Damon's red, red lips a drawn line. He gasps when Alaric hits just right, tries to keep him there. “I don't--”

A perfect pivot of Alaric's fine musculature and unrestrained arousal, thrusting up and in just right again, again, again. Damon growls low, puts his head back. The arc of his neck is stubborn. Even his Adam's apple looks rebellious as he swallows.

Then he says, startling Alaric by sounding more exhausted than annoyed: “The ring. The stupid fucking piece of shit ring. Also you're a piece of shit. You're breaking all the rules of the fast coatroom fuck.”

It's heavy on Alaric's hand, the circle of stone and metal that has snatched him back from death -- too many times, he thinks, sometimes. It's always heavy. Alaric slows in Damon and blinks, half-hopes he's hallucinating from his blood-high. “You hate rules,” he points out, punctuating with his cock. “You have no rules. You're rule-less.”

“Told you outside, earlier. What I have is a small list of people I mean to keep alive. I'm not much for caring about the ends to those means, as you're so kind to point out.”

Alaric smashes them together too roughly, feels Damon's toes curling on his lower back. He pants with the effort of fucking out his exasperation, his incomprehension, his comprehending-too-much. “You offered me blood because the ring took longer to work last time. You think you're gonna keep me from dying if the ring's done with me, Salvatore, gonna turn me into a vampire?”

Damon's dark lashes fall, blinking like code. “That's exactly what I think.”

Alaric is so startled by the matter-of-fact reply that he only keeps screwing from primitive urge and muscle memory. Somewhere close by Damon's still speaking when he's not overcome with their motion. “It took longer to work, five times longer in fact, and then it brought you back broken. If it weren't for my blood you'd be dead or still in the hospital, learning how to crawl again. Better for all of us,” he said, tongue darting out to wet his lips, all of him gripping around Alaric, “That you got used to the taste sooner rather than later. I thought you might prefer this way.”

“You're mental,” Alaric says, shaking his head. Not new news, but always astounding in its newly manifested heights.

“That's the nicest thing you've called me tonight.” Damon isn't finished. He talks right over Alaric's continued protests. Damon is often a champion talker during sex but is outdoing himself. The rest of it's a word-flood:

“We're keeping you,” he says. “One way or the other. In this your opinion doesn't quite come into play, though you can choose the method. If you don't want to drink from me again that's a shame and a regret that you'll have on cold winter nights but I don't much care. You'll be getting my blood. It'll be in every dish you're served, every drink you drink. Mixed into milk. Crystallized with the sugar. In your toothpaste. In the tapwater.”

Alaric just looks at him. He's up to his eyes and balls in Damon. No escape. It's the craziest thing he's heard in years of crazy things, which with his odds means it's probably true. “You're actually not kidding.”

“This isn't my kind of comedy.” Damon shrugs as best he can; their limbs are too tangled. “I've already compelled and coached the front and kitchen staff at the Grill in your special dietary needs. The bar staff, of course -- they were first. Your grocer. And the school cafeteria ladies -- they were charming. If you go to the doctor or the hospital there are standing orders to inject you with a reserve of my blood. Your dentist didn't take much convincing to keep a tank of the vaporized stuff on hand. It's better than laughing-gas, I'm told.”

For a long silent stretch Alaric doesn't know whether to kiss him hard or hit him hard, so he hangs back, considers withdrawing. Damon's legs closing on him and Damon's hands closing over his biceps won't allow it.

“You should have told me,” Alaric manages. Says it for the second time that night, his throat burning.

“You would have said no,” Damon says. He doesn't sound sad, Alaric decides. More like frustrated. Thwarted. Then he's all cocky surety again. “So I feel a little....wrong about my precautions, but also not. I'm telling you now, aren't I? I could have kept it a secret and then you would've come back all bitey and really been mad.”

“You are such an unbelievable...” Alaric prays to a vast pantheon of gods for patience. Swallows thickly. Tries again. “You don't have the right--”

Damon's too-sharp eyes narrow, and he pushes up from under Alaric, resuming their rise and fall and rut. “Excuse me, but I do. I'm designated savior of Mystic Falls now...God....if you haven't noticed. But this place also needs a moral-Mary sort who can wear a tie and kill things that bump in the night to help hold it together, you know? Yes, there --” He swallows, the length of his throat working as Alaric slides home. “If you die for keeps Elena and Jeremy are back up a creek with no parental paddle, the council's out a member, everyone will think the history teacher job's cursed like some Harry Potter shit--”

“And you, Damon?” They're at the edge of human and superhuman limitations, the point where it's too good for bodies to be together and they have to give the other up. Alaric is driving into Damon with purpose, arms on either side of Damon's face, keeping it framed. With every stroke he's making friction against Damon, his own hard stomach to Damon's hard cock. This is how Alaric likes it. Centered and sure, every move intended, looking down at Damon.

Alaric doesn't quite want to say it, doesn't want to push this feeling, but he does. “What would you be without me here?”

Damon sets his mouth. It isn't a smirk. He's breathing hard, close. The words are a bitten-out whisper. “I compelled a quarter of the town so I didn't have to find out,” he says. “What else do you want me to say?”

Everything and nothing. That would be best. Alaric says, pressing tongue and teeth to Damon's neck, “Say you'll ask next time. Say you'll stop with the cafeteria staff and all of that.” He's shaking with his body's effort, too deep now, too far gone. Recaptures Damon's lips and kisses him hard enough to make his fangs emerge. Breaks away, thinking. “Say that you'll never eye-fuck Amber Marchwood like that in front of me like that again.”

Damon laughs, the slight veins around his eyes rippling purple, the sound rippling over Alaric's skin. Then they're both laughing, grappling, gasping, fucking.

“IsayI'llasknexttimeandstopwiththecafeteriastaffandallofthatandnevereye-fuckAmberMarchwoodlikethatinfrontofyoulikethatagain,” Damon pronounces in a go. Alaric's freed one hand and fisted it tight over Damon's cock, urging him on, but Damon catches up quicker than an orgasm and says, “Next time?”

“Yeah.” His voice is husky, low. Tilting his head, Alaric hides the smile he's decided on. For now, the very present tense. Better this way, at least for a little while, until he finds a way around the blood. Better to be the one deciding rather than deal with vampire juice in his toothpaste.

If Alaric's purposefully doing the drinking, he can keep Damon's shenanigans confined to a single room containing the two of them. And he can't deny that there's truth in Damon's eccentric logic: Elena and Jeremy do need him, they've had enough shit happen. He's finally a respected voice on the council, he's the only one who seems to care that the kids come to class at Mystic Falls High. He has an adopted family and an energetic fuck-buddy and a bar where people fucking know his name. A little life insurance, messed-up as it was, really wasn't the worst idea considering the ring's recent behavior. Damon isn't wrong about that.

Alaric realizes, on the edge in Damon, that he likes the life he's made. Means to keep it. The ends be damned. “Well,” he murmurs, “I mean the time after this time,” and the edge of his teeth skim Damon's porcelain neck. He bites with what he thinks is the precise pressure to draw blood after a lot of thinking, finding the juncture where Damon's throat smooths into his shoulder. The stuff of immortals wells up in Alaric's mouth.

Damon cries out, then snaps his mouth shut; even the racks of coats can't muffle this. Alaric anchors deep into Damon as he drinks, and they come together on another planet. Down in the galaxy below their bodies are giving in and giving up, pushing and pulling and then spectacularly fluid.

They take a long time coming back from it, the threat of the council-bell looming.

“So,” says Damon, all sex-flushed heat and lazy warmth, trying to sound unshocked -- he's a little shocked, Alaric knows, hadn't expected the bite. Shocking Damon is almost as much of a coup as fucking him. “Does this mean you'll...”

Alaric is alight with Damon's blood again, though this sip had been smaller, more controlled. The impression of teeth is already gone from Damon's neck, and Alaric's tongue trails wet over the last traces of red.

“We'll see,” Alaric says. “Won't we.” He takes his time coming out of Damon, tilts to kiss him while he does it. It lasts for seconds and centuries. When he breaks away Alaric says, “I don't think we'll lack for drinking opportunities together, do you?”

For too short of a space it's all basking in afterglow and they get to be quiet and sated and share tangled-up limbs. When the dreaded bell-peal sounds the first call to the council meeting far down the hall, they tug away from each other reluctantly, cleaning up and righting clothes in silent dark.

Alaric asks it before they have to rejoin reality. He smooths the hand with the ring on it through disheveled hair. “If I die again,” he says evenly, making Damon's gaze snap over and his lips purse, “Will the ring or the blood bring me back first?”

Damon is quiet in their space between the racks. Then he heaves a sigh and says, “I don't know. Honestly, Ric, I don't. But with that Cracker Jack prize of yours going wonky, there'll at least be a back-up plan.” He grins, and it cuts through the dark. “You could try not dying if you want to be sure.”

“I'll keep that in mind,” Alaric says, returning Damon's sarcasm. Both of them know that in Mystic Falls the death-odds are quintupled. There are entirely too many of them in this town on a constant look-out for how not to die violently. He can't promise that he won't die anytime soon. It could happen in the course of that very evening. God, his life really is fully fucked. “Remember what you promised.”

Damon draws in close. His breath is warm. Surprisingly, so are his eyes. “If it means repeat performances of this coatroom behavior, I'll never eyefuck anyone but you at a Mystic Falls party again.” This time it's Damon who moves to fiercely kiss Alaric, insistent tongue chasing his own taste in Alaric's mouth. Their lips say silent things.

Then the bell rings second warning, and they reach the door still kissing, careening into stands of pea coats and dinner jackets. Alaric has to pull Damon away from snatching up a frilly dressing-gown souvenir as they go.

“You, not eye-screw in polite society? I don't ask the impossible. Let's try keeping with the other things you swore,” Alaric says with his hand on the doorknob, still emboldened by Damon's blood. “And maybe I'll have a little eyefuck-fun of my own out there and see how you enjoy it. We'll switch things up.”

“Oh, by all means, give it a go,” Damon says encouragingly. “If you're prepared for the payback. There's a pantry in the boarding house that's begging to see you tied up and tortured in.”

With that image and mutual understanding in mind they leave the coatroom and rejoin the party, where Alaric bats his lashes at Meredith Fell, M.D. with Damon Salvatore's blood in his body. Across the room Damon watches, bearing invisible traces of Alaric like brands only they can see.

The party takes unexpected turns, as parties here unerringly do, but long after the dust settles, once the fragile peace of Mystic Falls is temporarily preserved, they go together to the pantry at the boarding house. They will smell of apples in place of wool. Damon will taste the same, like ambrosia.