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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 

Re-United - 3. Chapter 3

With our son asleep and the serious issues handled, I decided we needed to simply be together, so I pulled my mate to me and held him. We sat there, enjoying each other’s presence. Of course, the world had other plans; there was a knock.

Rather than risk waking the baby, I stood and stepped into the hall to speak with Frederick. “The prince said you wanted to ask about Jenny, My Lord?”

“I did. Is there somewhere a bit more private we can speak?” I asked as I glanced at a passing chambermaid.

Frederick nodded and led me to a small sitting room. “Scott and I have realized that we have need of a nanny. Right now, Jenny is the only one we know, and we wanted to talk with you before talking with her. She might feel obligated if I ask her due to my rank. What can you tell me about her?”

“Jenny is quite qualified, My Lord, she—”

“No.” I interrupted, “I’m asking you, not George’s adjutant, and I’m asking as Greg, not Baron Fowler. Please, start over.”

With a smile and a nod, he said, “Understood, Greg. I’ll say again Jenny is quite qualified. She just renewed and was a registered nurse in her last life. She spent years working as an obstetrics nurse. Her husband from her previous life is now a student at UCLA medical school for the third time and plans to be a surgeon this time.”

“I see. So, she might be hesitant to move away from him.” I paused to think.

“You’re still learning our world, Greg. Jenny and her husband only shared the one life, they’re not fated mates.” Noticing my confusion, he went on to explain that only fated mates shared their lives forever. Most vampires shared a life or two, then moved on. Many had a child, but some held to the belief that only fated mates should raise children.

“And what about you?” I asked, then retreated. “I’m sorry, that’s too personal. You don’t have to answer that.”

“It’s fine, Greg. Jenny’s mother and I shared two lifetimes, then decided to go our separate ways. We are still close friends; Mona is a computer programmer who lives in San Jose.”

“Are you saying Jenny is your daughter?” I asked, shocked.

“Nothing gets by you, does it?” Frederick said with a smirk. “Yes, Jenny is my only child. I don’t think she’d have a problem moving, and honestly, I doubt she would feel any pressure because of your nobility. She turned down an offer from the count in Seattle several years ago.”

“Well, what about you?”

“I’m not qualified to be a nanny,” he deadpanned.

I sighed. “I have enough comedians, Frederick. I meant—”

“I know what you meant, Greg.” He interrupted with a laugh. “Jenny is two hundred and sixty years old; she’s old enough to decide on her own. And before you ask, my duties involve constant travel around North America. I can visit her anytime I like.”

Suddenly, I was nervous. I was free to ask Jenny to be our nanny, and she would be the first person I’d ever actually hired to serve me in any way, and it scared me. To make it worse, I was sitting with her father, almost like asking him for her hand. That thought caused me to start giggling, and that caused Frederick to look at me like I was insane. By the time I was done explaining, we both were laughing.

I stood and offered my hand. “Thank you for sharing all of this with me, Frederick. I guess the next step is a conversation with Jenny.”

“Good luck, Greg. I think she’d fit in with you and Scott. If that’s all you need, I have to greet a visitor at the airport.”

We parted ways, and I headed back to our room, where Jenny was watching Scott change a diaper. I needed to ask if there was a way to reduce my vampire senses. From his expression, Scott felt the same way. When he was done, he handed our son to me, and I settled in the rocking chair. When Jenny turned to leave, I asked her to stick around for a moment.

“Scott and I are not prepared to take care of an infant. You’ve taught us a lot, but I think we still have a long way to go. Even then, we both have school, work, and other things that will require us to be away from him. We don’t want to impose on our family and wanted to discuss with you the possibility of your coming with us as his nanny.” I said as my son fell asleep in my arms.

Scott gently took him from my arms and put him in the bassinet. Jenny watched him, gave a small nod of approval, then turned to me. “I would be honored, My Lord. Do you want to ask about my qualifications? Or get any references?”

“I hope you’ll forgive me, Jenny, but I’ve already talked to the only reference I need, and he relayed your qualifications. I’m told you were a nurse for several years and come from a fine family.”

She raised her eyebrows, then grinned. “Well, I hope Father also told you that I am fiercely protective of those in my care, My Lord. Am I to assume you intend to raise this human child and expect him to keep our secret for the next twelve to fifteen years until he’s mature enough to understand the risks?”

Scott and I looked at each other for a moment, then he nodded. I turned back to Jenny and said, “No, we don’t.”

Shocked, she exclaimed, “You plan on trying to change the boy, don’t you? Good heavens…” She stopped and composed herself. “Forgive me, My Lords, I spoke out of turn.”

“No, Jenny, you didn’t,” Scott offered. “You are concerned for his safety, as you should be.”

“And yes, we are going to change him as soon as we can,” I added.

Looking intently at me, she said, “If you’re committed to doing it, I only have one question, My Lord.” I waited until she asked, “What’s the delay?”

Scott and I looked at each other, confused. We turned back and waited for her to explain. “The boy is perfectly healthy, Sir. The sooner you attempt it, the more likely you are to succeed, and the more he’s likely to grow as a normal vampire infant would. Every day you delay increases the chance for failure. I know of one boy who was changed as a toddler, and he didn’t grow at a normal vampire rate. He didn’t hit puberty until he was six.”

“How many infant changings have you been involved in, Jenny? I thought it was extremely rare?” I asked, surprised by this new information.

After a deep breath, she replied, “In addition to the toddler I mentioned, I’ve helped with four attempts.”

“Attempts?” Scott and I asked simultaneously.

After a deep sigh, Jenny said, “Attempts, My Lords. The oldest son of Count Nardone is the only successful of those four.”

“And the toddler,” Scott added hopefully.

“The toddler is the son of Prince El-Hashim. I assume that someone has told you the odds of a successful change vary based on the rank of the vampire doing the change?” We nodded. “No offense, My Lords, but you are only a baron.”

I glanced at Scott before saying, “Before I say more, am I correct in assuming that you consider yourself in my service?”

She gave me a long, appraising look, then said, “I do, My Lord.”

I nodded and explained, “Prince George is certain I will not fail to change my son. He won’t say why, but I trust him with my life, and I’m trusting him with the life of my son.”

“Then, as I asked before; what’s the delay, My Lord?”

“As I understand it, he will need my attention for twenty-four to thirty-six hours and I didn’t want to impose on the prince’s hospitality longer than I need. I wanted to wait until we’re at home,” I explained.

“For an adult, yes, My Lord; your son is only eight pounds. His change should only take three to six hours.”

As I was considering this new information, there was a knock. I softly called for Billy to enter. He opened the door and glanced around; seeing the sleeping baby, he whispered that dinner was being served in five minutes. We thanked him, and I asked him to wait outside the door for us. I asked Jenny to stay with our baby, marking the first time Scott and I officially entrusted our son's care to his nanny.

Outside our room, we found Billy, Chris, and Jake waiting. We learned that Billy had realized we would probably be spending the afternoon with our son, so he chose to go with the other two on a tour of Hollywood. By the time we arrived in the dining room, they listed dozens of the stars they had seen and shared the pictures of the footprints and handprints the stars had made on the famous Walk of Fame.

As we were sitting down to eat, I asked George if he could spare some time for us after dinner. After he agreed, we enjoyed a delicious meal and an hour of Billy, Chris, and Jake talking about their day, interspersed with questions about our childcare lessons. Scott and I proudly related our experiences feeding and changing diapers. When I asked about somehow reducing the sensitivity of my nose, the entire table burst out laughing. Our meal was almost finished when Frederick entered and told George that his guest had arrived safely. George told me he would see Scott and me once he saw to his guest. After dinner, Scott and I took Billy and the guys to meet our son while George and James headed to meet this guest.

When we got to our room, Jenny told us our boy had slept the entire time we were gone, warned us to expect him to wake soon wanting to be fed, and left to get her own dinner. Before she left, we asked her to please return after eating. Billy, Chris, and Jake gathered around the bassinet and stared in awe at the silently sleeping little angel. Jake and Chris asked about Jenny, and we explained that she would return with us as our nanny. Jake made a few comments about us being so wealthy we needed a nanny, but Chris was more interested in Jenny, asking if she was single and if we thought he had a chance. His interest quickly waned when Scott mentioned her previous lives.

We were still teasing Chris about dating a cougar when our son made his presence known, just as Jenny had predicted. Scott rang for a bottle and then made me change the diaper, which I did with minimal coaching. After I handled his lower end, I settled into the rocker and dealt with his upper end. Jake, Chris, and Billy took turns holding him as he fed, and each got the required burp. He fell asleep in the arms of his uncle Jake, who nervously stood and put him in the bassinet. We were resuming our conversation when there was a knock.

I waved for the guys to follow me to the door, where I let George and Jenny in. I told Billy and the guys that we would see them in the morning, then took George over to officially meet our son. Once he did the obligatory admiring and even made the required comments about how cute he was, George sat down in the chair and waved for Scott, Jenny, and me to join him.

“Jenny and I happened to run into each other on the stairs, and based on our very short conversation, I assume that she is now in service to you as your nanny,” George said. “I make this assumption based on the fact that she refused to give me any information on your son or plans.”

“I meant no disrespect, Your Highness, but—"

Scott and I glanced at Jenny as George went on. “I applaud her discretion and commend you, Greg, for inspiring such loyalty after only a few hours.”

“Thank you, George,” I said, intentionally using his name in an attempt to relax Jenny and convey to George that this was personal. “You know that we already decided to change our son, and at the advice of someone we trust, we’d like to do it this evening; as soon as possible, in fact.”

Scott picked up where I left off. “I watched Dad change Greg, but I was injured and extremely emotional, so I didn’t pay attention. I had never been taught all the details, so we hoped the two of you could educate us on the process.”

Looking at Jenny, I added, “Including anything unusual that may be involved with the changeling being an infant.”

George and Jenny looked at each other, and then George said, “The changing process is amazingly simple, and several of the movies have come close, although that last series was beyond stupid. Seriously, suggesting that we sparkle was bad enough, but injecting a bunch of venom?” He let out a big sigh. “Our doctors have studied it for centuries, and we still don’t understand the science. Some say there is no scientific explanation; the fates are involved in changing just like they choose our nobles.

“Oh, sorry, that movie got on my nerves. Anyway, like I was saying, you drain the blood from his body until you feel the heart stop. At this point, the brain is still alive, and the body is starving for oxygen and food. You provide both by feeding him your blood. Simply use a fingernail to open a vein in your wrist, although in this case, maybe a finger or thumb?” He glanced at Jenny, and when she nodded, he continued. “He should feed for… I think I’ll let Jenny take over, Greg; she’s the expert on infants.”

“With his size, My Lord, he—”

“Please, Jenny, I appreciate you showing respect, but you’re our teacher this evening. If anything, we should be calling you Ma’am. Would it make you too uncomfortable if you called us Scott and Greg? Just for tonight.”

“I am fine calling you by your names, Greg. I just,” she paused, looking embarrassed. “I um… forgive me, I misjudged you and Scott. I’ll assist you with the change and find you a qualified replacement.”

Calmly, I said, “If, and I want to emphasize the if as strongly as I can, but IF we need to replace you, we will certainly accept your help. Right now, I would like to hear what you were going to say.”

She hesitated until Scott reached over and took her hand, “Please, Jenny, tell us.”

She glanced at George. He smiled and patted her hand. “It’s ok, Jenny, I think most of our nobles are pompous asses too.”

Her shy grin told me he had hit paydirt. She nodded and said, “As His Highness—”

“My name is George, Jenny. Your father is one of my oldest and closest friends.”

She looked at George and smiled, gave a short nod, and said, “As George said, most nobles are full of themselves, and I thought with you being a new baron and all… I didn’t think you really meant… I should have known you were sincere. You accepted all my criticism earlier, and I just threw all of that back in your face.”

I leaned forward and took the hand that George was patting. “You’re right about one thing, Jenny, I’m a new baron, and I’m going to screw things up. I’m not used to being called ‘My Lord, but I’m learning to accept it. Lots of times, you will have to use that when speaking to me because others won’t understand, but in private, my friends call me Greg. If I can trust you with my son's life, I can certainly trust you to know when to play-act the servant. There is one thing you have to accept, and this is a deal breaker. If you disagree with us on the care of our son, we will listen to your opinions, but the final decision rests with us.”

“Like I said earlier, Greg, I am very protective of the children put in my care. I will advocate for what I feel to be right. That said, once I know that you’re making an informed decision, you and Scott are his parents, and I will follow your instructions to the letter,” she said as solemnly as the vow I had made to George.

I glanced at Scott, whose smile told me all I needed to know. “Now, would you please tell us what we need to know so we can change our son? Otherwise, you’re stuck with raising a human child, with all the associated dangers to his life as the son of a baron who might develop enemies.”

Concerned, she asked, “Enemies?”

“Yes, enemies,” Scott replied. “We’re changing our son to protect him. To protect him from the isolation he would feel going to school with other humans and having to keep a huge part of his life hidden from his friends. To protect him from the feelings of not fitting in; growing up being the only human in the house. And finally, to protect him from becoming a pawn for some jealous noble who is angry that Greg is a baron and takes it out on our innocent human child.”

“You just said that our nobles are asses, Jenny,” George said. “They’re also jealous, petty, and the reason Greg has security. If you doubt their abilities to contrive evil, ask your father how many wars have begun with squabbles between vampire nobles.”

She seemed to be digesting the things we’d told her. I had a feeling what she was thinking and took a risk. “Now that you know we’re doing it for him and not being selfish, will you support us? And help us?”

Jenny slowly nodded, saying, “Yes, I will help you, Greg, and I will support and protect your son.”

Scott and I both let out the breaths we didn’t know we were holding and whispered, “Thank you,” at the same time.

She took a moment to wipe her eyes and took a few breaths. “The first thing is that everything George said is accurate for an adult human. Infants have substantially smaller stomachs, so they have to eat every hour when they’re newborns. Your son’s stomach right now holds less than an ounce. Also, he was right when he mentioned a thumb or finger. An infant can’t form a seal around a cut on your wrist; he needs you to create a nipple he can suck. If his mouth is large enough, I would suggest the thumb. It’s fed by the Princeps Pollicis artery and will supply the strongest and most oxygenated blood. Before you attempt the change, see if you can convince him to suck on your thumb by putting some formula on it before his next feeding.”

Scott and I both reflexively held up our thumbs and examined them. “The next difficulty is the ratio of the herbs in the tea. For adults, it’s equal amounts of parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme, brewed as a tea, but for infants, you need to double the thyme and reduce the sage by two-thirds. The sage, for some reason, overwhelms the infant physiology.”

As she listed the herbs, I laughed. When George heard it, he nodded. “The formula has been public for centuries, hidden in an old English folk song. No doubt you’ve heard it; it was recorded by Simon and Garfunkel in 1968. As you spend time in our world, you’ll find that humans know much more about us than they know.”

“Well,” I sighed, “we have a long time to learn those other things. For now, we need to focus on our son. What else, Jenny?”

“Adults need eight ounces of tea after their second feeding; infants need half an ounce of tea every hour until they’re changed, and they tolerate it better if there’s blood mixed with it.”

Scott asked, “Do we mix the blood with the tea ahead of time so it’s ready? Or does it have to be fresh?”

Jenny smiled and nodded. “You’re paying attention. Yes, you can open your wrist and mix the tea ahead of time, as long as it’s body temperature when you feed it to him. It doesn’t even have to be Greg’s blood.”

This caused me to ask, “Could we both drain him and feed him?”

George leaned forward, intrigued. “Explain your thinking, Greg.”

“Well, when James changed me, I was already close to bled out, but he drained me, then he fed me. No one else, right Scott?” Scott nodded, so I went on. “If Scott’s blood can be used for the tea, it makes sense that we could alternate feedings.”

Jenny and George looked at each other as they considered my question. George replied, “I’ve heard of it being done with adults, but I can’t say about an infant.” He turned to Jenny. “Thoughts?”

“If it works with adults, it should work with an infant, but I can’t guarantee it. Why would you want to do it that way?”

Scott replied, “Dad changed Greg. Under vampire traditions, he is Greg’s sire, his father. If we do it this way, he will be our son, not just Greg’s. But if you think it increases the risk…”

I took Scott’s hand and said, “The fates put us together, and then they gave us our son; they will not take our son.”

“Jove and Juno will watch over him, and Minerva will guide your actions,” George stated firmly. “Do it your way and have faith.”

“I’ve heard of Juno and Minerva, but who’s Jove?” I asked.

“Sorry, when I was a child, we called him Jove. In modern times, he’s known as Jupiter,” George explained.

Even more confused, I said, “I’ll have to talk to you more about this, George. You talk about the fates, and now you mention Roman gods; which is it?”

The baby chose that moment to wake up. Jenny rang for a bottle and moved to get him, but Scott stopped her. “Let us take care of him until he wakes up as one of us? Please?”

She smiled, patting his hand, “I’ll get us some blood. It would do both of you to be well nourished.”

While Scott changed the diaper, George explained that ‘the fates’ was the generic term vampires used for the gods. Since many vampires were born long before Christ, it made sense that they would continue in the belief system they knew. Reflecting their diverse origins, vampires individually worshipped deities from the Greek, Norse, and Roman pantheons and many others who adhered to Hebrew, Christian, Islamic, Hindu, and other major or minor religious traditions. I had always rejected my father’s Catholic faith, yet now, a man who walked the earth five hundred years before Christ was telling me that God, or god, or gods, were guiding my future.

I was pulled from my meditation by Jenny, who handed me a glass of elk blood. I smiled, thanked her, quickly gulped it down, and took my turn feeding our son. While I fed him, we continued our conversation.

“Where were we?” George asked.

“Jenny was saying we could both drain and feed him,” Scott replied.

With a nod, Jenny continued to educate us. “There is one risk that is easy to avoid. With both of you draining him, you could drain him past the point of heart failure. With an adult, there’s a large margin of error due to the volume of blood, but with an infant of this size, one simple swallow could take that critical last drop. In order for a change to work, the heart has to be stopped, but the body cannot be completely dry.”

Scott and I looked at each other, and I could see my fears mirrored in his expression. He suggested, “Then one of us stops as the heart slows? Would that give us a safety factor?”

Jenny sat back and considered it, then said, “You would have to plan ahead which of you is going to stop, and the moment you sense the heart slowing, he stops. An infant’s heart will go from bradycardia to arrest in a matter of a few heartbeats.” Seeing our confused looks, she explained that bradycardia was a slow heartbeat and arrest meant a heart that was stopped.

The longer we discussed this, the more I realized that we were talking about ending my son’s life. Regardless of our bringing him back, changing him into a being that could live for centuries, we had to end his life to begin the process. I was dwelling on this when I felt Scott’s finger brush my cheek; it was then that I realized I was crying.

Jenny calmly asked, “Do you think you have it all? Or are there more questions.”

I thought through everything she and George had told us. When I looked at Scott, he was deep in thought, doing the same thing. We each asked a few questions, and I’m glad we did. When James had changed me, he had fed me every four hours. Jenny told us that we needed to essentially feed the baby constantly, with our blood for forty-five minutes, then the tea for ten. James said my change was complete when I was fully conscious and able to stand on my own, but how could we tell when an infant was done? His natural states were feeding and sleeping. How would we know? Jenny’s answer was no help.

“Every infant is different, but you’ll know,” she said.

I grinned and said, “That’s a lot of help.”

“I’m sorry, Greg, but like I said, every infant is different. Some will wake up and stay awake and calm for several hours; others will get a sudden fit of strength that the parent can feel. Keep in mind that I’ve only seen one successful changing of an infant. Most of my information comes from research preparing to do that change.”

The baby had long since fallen asleep in my arms. Scott went with Jenny to the kitchen to make the tea and to learn how to make the adult version. I carried our son into the bathroom and gave him a nice warm bath. After asking my permission, George said some prayers for Jove to give us strength, Juno so bless our family, and Minerva to guide us with wisdom through this trying time.

When Jenny and Scott returned, he took the baby from me and gently dried him. Jenny put the bottle of blood tea in a bowl of warm water, wished us luck, and left. George said another prayer to Apollo, the god of healing, asking for his watchful eye over our son as he died to one life and was reborn to another. He then put a hand on my shoulder and told me to have faith, turned, and left us, closing the door behind him.

I carried our son to the bed and gently laid him in the center. He was unusually quiet; it was past his feeding time, but he didn’t make a sound as Scott and I undressed. We had discussed it and, while it may seem silly, when a couple makes a baby in the usual way, they’re naked; so we thought we should be naked. When a couple makes love, they kiss, so we leaned over the boy between us and exchanged a gentle, loving kiss. We had kept him naked because babies come into the world naked. We gently caressed his arms, legs, and body, to relax and reassure him with our touch. As we sensed him relaxing, we once again leaned across his body and kissed, our tears dripping onto his chest.

When the kiss broke, we let our fangs drop and we each grasped one of his tiny arms and bent down to kiss him on the soft flesh at the inside of his elbow. After the kiss, we gently bit and began to draw his blood into our bodies. Our angel didn’t make a sound as our fangs pierced his skin. He didn’t make a sound as we sucked his life-giving blood from his body. As his heart slowed, we slowed our feeding. When his heart was almost stopped, Scott stopped feeding. I continued until I felt the last faint heartbeat of my son; then silence.

 

Copyright © 2023 Justin4Fun; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 
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Chapter Comments

Okay, the idea of killing your child to save them isn't new, I guess, but this is one for the books so to speak.

The conversation with Fredrick was hilarious, and I am glad that Jenny has decided to help Greg and Scott with the infant.  She will be ideally suited to this on a number of levels.  

I personally think it is so funny when so called Christians get so in your face about the older religions.  Many of them still have believers and have been around thousands of years longer than Christianity and yet the self-righteous among us act as if their belief, which many profess but don't actually follow; is the only valid one.

Scott will be the one that best understands what the infant will go through between the two of them.  Not the actual changing but growing up as a vampire.  That said, they will have their hands full and probably be more than glad that Jenny is around to help with a myriad of issues that neither of them have even considered yet.  

Great chapter, and the next few should be something else.

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17 hours ago, chris191070 said:

Wow what a chapter and what a cliffhanger.

That last paragraph was amazing and so well written, considering what was being done.

Yup, that cliffhanger is a real heart stopper. Sorry, the Devil made me! 😄 

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10 minutes ago, centexhairysub said:

Okay, the idea of killing your child to save them isn't new, I guess, but this is one for the books so to speak.

The conversation with Fredrick was hilarious, and I am glad that Jenny has decided to help Greg and Scott with the infant.  She will be ideally suited to this on a number of levels.  

I personally think it is so funny when so called Christians get so in your face about the older religions.  Many of them still have believers and have been around thousands of years longer than Christianity and yet the self-righteous among us act as if their belief, which many profess but don't actually follow; is the only valid one.

Scott will be the one that best understands what the infant will go through between the two of them.  Not the actual changing but growing up as a vampire.  That said, they will have their hands full and probably be more than glad that Jenny is around to help with a myriad of issues that neither of them have even considered yet.  

Great chapter, and the next few should be something else.

Bored Kid GIF by Texas Archive of the Moving Image
 

Hmmm 🤔, adolescent vampire pranks? A vampire parent has to hope they don’t suck…conundrums are a bitch.

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Damn it, I'm all caught up. This is just a travesty beyond all human recollection. Oh well... Hey, does anyone have any grey pupon? :gikkle:

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On 12/10/2023 at 10:55 PM, Thomas Haworth said:

About Jupiter/ Jove: This confusion is a result of Latin grammar. 'Jupiter'  is the form used as the subject of a sentence. In all the other places in a Latin sentence, the name is 'Jov-' plus a case ending for the exact role in a sentence. 

Sorry for the pedantry -- I am a retired academic, and explaining Latin cases to English speakers gets tedious.

Fortunately, in my fantasy world, it is more of a choice of names for a supposedly dead pantheon of gods. As such, Jove was the name used by his worshippers in antiquity, while Jupiter is the more modern choice.

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Albert1434

Posted (edited)

You made me cry again, sigh and with fingers crossed I hope all is well and the god of luck will help with all of this changes!

Edited by Albert1434
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