Fandom: Da Vinci’s Demons (1x07)
Pairing: Vanessa Moschella/Giuliano de Medici
Summary: She was the only woman in the world to ever make the great Giuliano de Medici feel insecure.
Author’s Note: These two are such Mark-and-Lexie-esque characters it’s almost a little funny. I fell in love with them immediately.
Giuliano awoke to Vanessa’s face before him. Not her real face—not her warmth and flesh and happy smile—but her face nonetheless. It was sketched across all manner of papers and bits of parchment, all hung about the wall to the side of her bed.
He reached out to touch the closest one of them, a drawing depicting her from the side, with her head bowed and half her face visible. Her long hair flowed out behind her like a cape, catching and lifting in the wind, but frozen forever within this drawing. When Giuliano looked closer at the sketch, he could just make out a smile turning up her thin lips. With her eyes downturned, she looked like she was delighting over some secret.
For a moment, Giuliano imagined he himself was the secret that she was so pleased to keep.
He was still staring at the drawings when Vanessa’s face appeared in the flesh this time, smiling as she carried a mug of steaming something into the bedroom. “I boiled you some quinto quarto for your hangover,” she called, noticing he was awake. “It works wonders, trust me.”
The little glint in her eye told him she’d been here more than a few times before, and he smiled, taking the cup. She was forever full of surprises. “You’re a saint,” he proclaimed.
“Oh, no…” She sat down on the rumpled bed beside him. “I think we disproved my sainthood last night. Many times over. Unless we’re talking about another type of saint, dreamed up by a heretic…”
He chuckled, always amused at her ability to toss aside her past at the convent like it was merely another role she’d taken on for the theater. And perhaps it had been. Taking his first sip of the concoction she offered, he winced at the taste, but forced himself to gulp down the rest. When he finished, he passed the cup back to her, and straightened up a bit in her bed. Out of the corner of his eye, he caught sight once more of the pieces of parchment adorning the walls. “These drawings of you…” He cast his hand about the room. She watched, curious, as his eyes lingered on her face in them. “Are they yours? Are they self-portraits?”
“No.” She shook her head, smiling. “No, Leo drew them.”
Giuliano tried not to care at the quiet way she spoke of him, tried not to notice the fondness in her voice when his name slipped out from between her small lips. But he scowled nonetheless, and found himself glaring at the drawings—and hating that they captured Vanessa’s beauty so perfectly. That goddamn Leonardo da Vinci. Leo. Giuliano had never liked the artista, not from the first moment they’d met. He was an arrogant son of a bitch, and Giuliano had no patience for men like that—men like himself were entirely insufferable.
"What are they doing here?” he asked, begrudgingly adding, “Shouldn't they be on display somewhere? Some gallery?"
Vanessa chuckled, sitting down beside him. "Oh, no. Never. Leo would die of mortification if these were put up on display. These are his cast-offs, you see. He lets me keep the ones he thinks are sub-par—that is, if I can get my hands on them before he burns them in anger." She pointed to a couple crumpled ones close to her bed. “Those I picked up after he was finished sketching one day. They were my favorites, but he couldn’t even stand to look at them, and mashed them up. I grabbed them before the wind took them.”
Giuliano peered at them. He couldn’t blame her for snatching them up—they were beautiful. He stared at all the other drawings, finding none of them anything short of spectacular. The corner of his mouth curled down as his eyes lingered on the set of her eyes, the shading beneath her chin. Even the man’s cast-offs were remarkable. Giuliano hadn’t done a single remarkable thing in his life.
As the younger brother to Lorenzo the Magnificent, he was forever useless as the second heir to the Medici line, pissing away his time and money because he had no title to live up to. The best he would ever be was Lorenzo’s brother. The artista, however, was just a bastard boy from Vinci—but even he had risen above his birth. He had strived and worked and toiled. He had created wonders. What had Giuliano done, except have women, and squander money, and partake in whatever illicit activity caught his eye?
His eyes wandered over to Vanessa, wondering why she bothered with him when she had the artista so close. Would Giuliano be one of her cast-offs, too, just like these pictures had been for Leonardo?
“Do you have something with him? The artista?” Giuliano wondered aloud. He had to struggle to keep his voice level, struggle to sound like he wouldn’t care if she said yes.
Vanessa shook her head. “No.”
But she spoke too softly, and averted her eyes from his when she spoke, and so Giuliano knew there was more she wasn’t saying. He reached over to the drawing, tracing his fingers along the curve of her cheek, made permanent on the page with bits of charcoal. “Did you take me into your bed because he rejected you?”
“No!” Vanessa yelped as if someone had hit her. She pulled on his shoulder, tearing his eyes away from the drawings. Her eyes were alight with shock, her forehead lined in offense. “Giuliano, no, of course not! I brought you into my bed because I wanted you there.” She pressed on his chest with both hands, cupping his naked skin. “Here. With me. I—” Suddenly, she broke off, bowing her head.
He thought she looked much like the drawing he’d been examining earlier, except without the radiance of her smile. What secret was she hiding now, if not him?
For once, he waited patiently for her to continue. He wanted the truth out of her, and while he did not know much about women except how to get them to spread their legs and what to do once he was between them, he knew enough to know he should stay quiet right now.
“There was a time,” she began softly, “that I wanted there to be something between us. There were many times that I wanted there to be something between us.” She shook her head, and when she turned her face to the window, her profile lit up in the sun. Giuliano found himself thinking she would make a beautiful portrait like that—undressed, bathed in sunlight, hair a mess and cheeks pinked. Giuliano prayed to God and all the saints he could name that Leonardo da Vinci had never seen her like this.
“For a little while there was a little something there. But… But he did not want me the way I wanted him, so nothing more ever happened.” She took a deep breath, lifting her head again to look him in the eye: “So, to answer your question again, Giuliano: No, there is nothing going on between the two of us. Leo and I are just friends.”
Giuliano wanted to be satisfied with that, but he had never been a man easily satisfied. Women, wine, food, gold—it more than just a little of any of those things to satisfy him. It was the same with the truth. “You’re just friends?” he pressed, eyeing her as he laid back. “You mean the way you and I are just friends?”
Vanessa drew her hands from his chest, and sat back. “I wasn’t aware that we even were friends,” Vanessa replied coolly. “Or did I perhaps dream up last night, Your Grace? Are we nothing more than acquaintances again? A bar wench and a Florentine lord?”
Giuliano scowled. “Don’t play those cards with me. You know as well as I do that we are not acquaintances—”
“Then what are we?” Vanessa interrupted. “I am not asking anything of you, believe me,” she added, half laughing. “I do not want to be brought to your palace. And I certainly do not want to interrupt your impending marriage, nor take the poor woman’s place.” Her eyes narrowed. “But I also do not want you playing the part of a jealous lover, either, especially if you cannot even admit that we are lovers in the first place.”
Giuliano stared at her for a long time. He hadn’t ever come up against a woman so headstrong—most of them gave into him and his wishes immediately. But Vanessa was fighting him on almost everything. Even last night, she hadn’t been satisfied with him taking control when they’d fallen into bed… But, for some reason, he hadn’t fought her when she’d turned them around. He’d just laid back and watched her, and let her bring his body to climax again and again.
He shut his eyes as he thought of it, remembering how supple her skin had been beneath his hands, how tight her channel had been around his cock. How warm and wet her mouth had been when she’d swallowed him down.
“I won’t deny what you’re saying,” he finally answered, forcing his eyes open once more. She still had anger in his eyes, and he knew just by looking at her that he’d have to try harder. “And I won’t deny that I want to see you again, that I want more of what happened last night…”
“And?” she prompted, standing up and crossing her arms over her small chest.
Giuliano sighed, his eyes falling from her face to her feet as he muttered, “And I apologize for implying what I did about your intentions with me.”
“My intentions were to fuck you, Giuliano. Not to use you as some tool for revenge. I wanted you of my own desires alone. Nothing else prompted me. No one else.”
“I know that now.”
“And you’d do best to remember it,” Vanessa reminded him. “Because we will not be having this conversation about Leo again.”
Giuliano’s lips flickered up into a smile as he returned his eyes to her face; he liked the sound of that stipulation. Getting up slowly, he stood to his feet before her. When the sheets fell away, he noticed her eyes fell down to his manhood, and lingered about the length of his cock, which he could feel was swelling and hardening. Her cheeks were pink when her eyes rose to meet his again. God, he loved that blush.
“How about we don’t have any more conversations, ever?” he suggested, taking a couple steps towards her.
To his extreme satisfaction, Vanessa smiled, and welcomed his arms when they wrapped around her. “I think that sounds good,” she answered, tipping her head back to meet his eyes.
He smiled down at her, his grin mirroring hers, and then ducked down to capture her mouth with his. She kissed him back immediately, her hands lifting to clutch at his arms, and neck, and when he turned them around and pushed her back down on the bed, she didn’t protest. Instead, she drew him closer him with eager fingers and spread legs and wanting lips.
Maybe the artista was talented and charismatic and brilliant. Maybe he was Lorenzo’s favorite, and the people’s delight, and Florence’s savior.
But Giuliano had something that no one else had, not even the artista. And he wasn’t going to cast her aside any time soon.
Author’s Note: Reviews would be FANTASTIC! This is my first try with these two, and this fandom, and I would LOVE to hear your thoughts, be they good or bad! Thank you so much for reading!
There are too many pairings that I love in this show, so you may be seeing more Da Vinci’s Demons work from me soon! Again, thank you for reading!