A Big Shiny Blue Marble Ch. 53byTaLtos6©
***I've been trying to get back into the groove of this after a while away and I can say that I've learned something.
Never, ever, try to write four separate story lines at the same time. They all get bogged then.
Ok, so we rejoin the odd collection of folks who have met each other on a lost and forgotten stretch of cowpath in the mountains. After this long, you might need to go back to refresh your memory by re-reading Chapter 52.
I know I had to.
Oh, and I'm sorry about the humor in this. I really couldn't help it. 0_o
Book of the Forsaken Part 8
Randi almost spit out her tea as her eyes widened and she struggled for breath in the middle of being torn between swallowing that mouthful of tea and trying hard to suppress the gasp which came to her. Finally, she had it together and stared.
"You really said that?" she gaped as Rudhi blinked a little innocently.
"Well,... yes," Rudhi nodded, "Was it wrong? I wished to show him my interest."
Randi thought about it for a moment, "No, I can't say that it was exactly wrong to say it," she said as she looked through the grove of trees at D'Arcy, who was trying to find a little bread in his pack, "but holy smokes, Rudhi, let's just say that there are maybe more subtle and quiet ways for a girl to show her interest than to tell a man that she'd like to bear his children."
"I did not tell him a mistruth," Rudhi said, "I was very sincere with my words. I would be happy to bear his young if he became my male and if I could. That is one of the ways that we tell each other where ... I am..."
She looked down in silence for a moment as her voice trailed off. She shook her head then.
"I am a fool," she said and she turned to go but Randi stopped her, pushing her back until she was up against a tree in the darkness.
"No, Rudhi," she said, "I know you. You'll leave now because you feel ashamed and I won't see you for a half a week at least. Don't feel bad. This is all strange to you. I know that. Look, I wasn't exactly too shy for words myself when I wanted to show Ayt'han how I felt about him, was I?"
She pressed herself against Rudhi and leaned in to kiss her ear very softly before she whispered, "The facts are, that we've found males we liked, and those males – both of them - are very different from what's normal around here. Ayt'han knew it and I'd bet my socks that D'Arcy will cut you some slack too. Don't leave now. I think you'd be making a big mistake if you did."
Rudhi looked over her friend's shoulder at D'Arcy and she nodded a little finally before she drew her head back and kissed Randi to thank her.
D'Arcy waited where he was, now that he had some chili and a couple of slices of bread for Rudhi. He wanted to speak to her, but he was unsure now as he saw them standing together the way that they were. Randi wished her friend the best and looked for Billy, seeing him coming up behind D'Arcy.
"You look confused," Billy said as he walked up behind the leader of the roadmen.
D'Arcy nodded as he turned his head, "I am, I guess. I thought that Rudhi and I might get to something, but the way that she's standing there with Randi, well, I don't know now."
"It's nothing," Billy smiled, "You just don't know them yet. Those two are really tight, that's all, and they're not shy with each other, either. It's nothing to find them stuck up against each other closer than that and you'd think they were about to go look for a bed in about another minute, but that's just how they are. Most times, they're just talking and that's just the way they do it. I've seen them with their hands in some odd places for a couple of women who are discussing what they'd like for dinner, but that's just them. You get used to it and to be honest, I've come to like seeing it. Randi told me that Rudhi really likes you.
She's had a tough time since she's come here. She didn't know anybody and the way that the people were back where she's from were very different from how people are here, so she always feels like she's said or done something wrong. At first, she was too forward about everything, but now I think I see that she's afraid to even open her mouth and believe me, it's not a look that goes well on her. She's not anything like herself like this.
If you think you like her, then go and show her. Just don't be surprised at what might come out of her mouth, that's all. She's trying hard to fit in and to her, she always thinks that she gets everything wrong now."
D'Arcy nodded his thanks and began to walk over. As he approached, Rudhi turned around and smiled.
"I've brought you a bowl of chili and some bread," D'Arcy said, "I thought you might be a little hungry."
"Hold the bowl for her until she sits down," Randi smiled as she slapped the top of the fender of her tank, "Here's a good place, if you don't mind sitting five feet off the ground."
He nodded and Randi walked away as Rudhi looked at where she'd suggested. D'Arcy was a little surprised to see Rudhi flit upward and end sitting and looking at him with her legs dangling over the side. He smiled and handed her the food before he got up himself by grabbing the fender and placing his boot onto the tank tread and then stepping up to sit next to her.
"So you were able to help uh, Callie?" he asked.
She nodded, "There was little to it. I only had to be sure that I had the one." She looked at him a little curiously for a moment, "You do not say anything about the way that I speak into your mind. I have found that it bothers or even frightens people here.
But not you, D'Arcy. Is there a reason?"
He smiled a little uncomfortably, but he shook his head, "No. I just know that it's how you speak, and I like the way that it sounds in my head to uh, hear it that way."
"That is not my voice," she said, "It is only a way to be able to talk to you. The way that I sound is different from one person to the next because it is how they think that I should sound. I must do it this way, I cannot say words to you that you would understand and I can't understand what is said to me unless I hear the thoughts of the one speaking to me."
He looked away for a moment, "There's more to speech than just the words, Rudhi. You ought to eat a little of that before it gets too cold. It tastes best when it's hot."
She nodded and was surprised to find something else which she now liked to eat. "Everywhere that I go here, I find such good things to eat. Thank you for this, D'Arcy, and what was meant when you said that there is more to speech?"
"Well, I guess that I was trying to think of a way to get you to speak to me with your voice, now that I know that you've got one. I know I won't understand any of it, but I'm pretty sure that I'd love to hear it," he smiled.
But she shook her head, "My people spent all of the time – I guess that I could say thousands of years in war. Our way of speaking shows it and is very direct and forceful. I do not think that you would like to hear it."
D'Arcy chuckled quietly, "You told me that you can see what we are. Wolf-born have a language, Rudhi, and it's not very pleasant to human ears either. You don't have to let me hear your voice if you don't want to. I'd hate to make you feel ashamed of what you are."
He spoke to her in a very different way then, down low in his throat and though it was quiet, there was no mistaking the growls in it. But to his surprise, Rudhi grinned at him and nodded.
"Oh, I like to hear that," she smiled with a little laugh, "I do not know what was said, but it was very pleasant to me."
D'Arcy couldn't help but laugh a little, but his jaw dropped open a little as Rudhi spat out some words in a flat tone which ended in a guttural growl as well for emphasis, as if she was a little angry with him. She looked at him a little shyly, as though she was a little ashamed that it had come out of her.
"What did you say to me?" she asked, her hand on his knee as she leaned forward, very interested to know, "Your words sounded so good to me. I must know."
He looked away then, "It wasn't much of anything, really. I'm not really a poet or somebody who's good with their words or anything. I just said that you're the most lovely girl that I've ever seen in my life. What did you say to me? I thought that was amazing."
Rudhi looked down and smiled a little shyly, "I tried to think of how things would be said by two people as we are where I lived. Our words are straightforward and seldom carry anything hidden such as it is done here when one says anything. I hope it was not wrong to say, but I only said that I hoped that this would lead to a mating attempt between us later. Was it wrong to say to you?"
He took her hand as he shook his head, "I see what you mean about speaking directly. It's ok, I was ready for that, and I really do like the way that your voice sounds."
He said a very short phrase to her and then smiled, "I just answered that it is my hope as well."
She offered him one of the slices of bread after dipping it in the bowl and he accepted. Neither of them said anything until Samantha walked over grinning.
"Excuse me," she laughed, "but I heard D'Arcy telling you that you're beautiful. So to me, that means that he might just be feeling a little hopeful." The two people on the tank looked away in opposite directions then, but Samantha was determined to help – even if they hadn't exactly asked her to.
"Stop looking like you want to kill me and go get Rudhi a flask of that beer in my pack, D'Arcy. I want about a minute and a half with somebody that I don't want to have an unpleasant surprise later."
The look which he returned to her ought to have caused her to wither on the spot, but she just laughed a little and slapped his butt after he'd jumped down and begun to walk away.
As she turned to Rudhi and began to speak, Rudhi saw her as a female wolf-born for the first time and thought that she was lovely. Her face was as she'd seen it earlier, but now there were none of the undertones of her human appearance. Rudhi looked at her eyebrows there as they floated on a sea of short honey-golden facial fur under her long hair. It was quite a striking visage.
"Listen," Sam smiled past her teeth, "I'm not trying to embarrass you or D'Arcy. I just want to tell you the way that wolf-born girls are and what he might sort of expect, you know?"
Rudhi nodded earnestly, "Yes! This is what I wish to know."
"Good," Sam grinned, "But you know he can likely get a little ... uh, rough sometimes, ok? I'll belt him in the mouth if he hurts you, but you ought to know that about us. Even if we're trying to be gentle, it still might come out. The other side of that is that you can do the same thing. Fair's fair.
If you want it, then you just show him that you want it – and there's no harm in it if you even show him WHERE you want it, ok? There's nothing wrong if you find yourself getting to where you think you'd really like to get things started and you just show him the place. Lean over something while you look back and he'll get the message if nothing else works."
She looked away and saw that D'Arcy had found the beer and was about to come back. "Ok, I'll need to hurry this up," she said with a little smile, "I do want this to be good for you and him, since he's my cousin and I love him.
Now, if it does happen and he gets really close to uh, finishing, he's gonna want to bite you. It's natural that he'd want to hold you with his teeth while he comes. But you don't have a ruff of fur around your neck like one of us," she pointed. "Because of that, knowing D'Arcy, he'll hold back, since he won't want to hurt you. If it's ok with you, then you have to let him know that you'd accept his bite then.
There's a little of him making you his bitch in it, but these days, there's not a thing wrong if you show him that you're making him the wolf that you want for yourself – though you might want to save that for a later mating. It's up to you. He might even ask you in the middle of it, so if that happens, then you ought to think hard and not just agree."
She leaned back a little and looked at Rudhi, "I don't know much about you and what you are, Rudhi. Was it normal for males to bite their females where you're from?"
"Oh yes," Rudhi nodded, "if the mating was between two who cared about each other, it would be a form of insult NOT to bite, but can the female bite too?"
Sam looked at her a little searchingly with a new measure of respect in her eye, "Was that normal there?"
"Yes," Rudhi replied.
Samantha reached out and touched Rudhi's jaw, trying to see her teeth. "Well as long as you don't do more damage than he does to you, and you don't open any arteries," she smiled as she leaned much closer to whisper.
"Oh – fuck – yeah. If you feel it, honey, then you just bite him right back. Bite him first, if you want to. It's ok to draw a little blood, but nothing that'll leave anything permanent, ok"
"Thank you," Rudhi whispered, and Samantha hugged her briefly then, "You're welcome. Just don't hurt my cousin's heart, that's all. Both of those two mean a lot to me."
They drew apart then as D'Arcy arrived and Sam turned to go.
"What did you guys talk about?" He asked with a little grin, "Or is it a secret?"
"No secret," Rudhi giggled a little, "I asked if it is permitted to bite your bottom if I have the chance and the want, and Sam said –"
Samantha was laughing by then, "You just bite his ass all you want to, honey.
Finally," she said, talking to herself while she walked off, "a bitch after my own heart. I like her already."
"Who?" Randi asked as she came around from the other side of the tank. She was still sort of looking for her husband, but she felt a little torn over wanting to remain nearby as well. She wasn't nosy or anything, but she really wanted for something nice to happen for her friend.
"Oh, hi," Samantha said in a little surprise as she held out her hand, "I'm Sam. Is this your's?" she asked as she looked at the dark metal mass beside them.
When Randi nodded, Samantha smiled, "I want to thank you for your help earlier. We were sort of sitting ducks like that until it got dark."
"I didn't like what I was looking at," Randi said, "so ..."
"Well it was a lot of help that we hadn't looked for," the other one nodded.
"Oh, you're welcome," the redhead grinned for a moment, "Hey, who were you talking about just now?"
"That Rudy girl," Sam said, "It's kind of looking good for D'Arcy and her. Well that's what I was thinking, anyway. Is she a friend of yours?"
"Yeah," Randi nodded, "and I'm a little hopeful too. She has trouble with English sometimes. Not so much with the words, but in what she thinks that she ought to say and the way that it comes out. People were really direct where she's from and here, well a turn of phrase that we all understand leaves her in the dust a lot of the time."
"Doesn't matter," Sam grinned widely, "Sometimes I think that it's just what my cousin needs. That, and a plank across the back of the head when he gets shy and pulls back. I keep telling him that shy is something that just doesn't work for him, not under that gruff front that he puts up a lot of the time."
She nodded, "That's why he needs me, and that's why I need the plank - and a good head start right after I bash him with it."
"Bash him?" Randi said, "Why?"
"He's good-looking enough to make a lot of girls drop to their knees and thank their maker as soon as they see him - either of those two, really," Sam smiled. "He's wicked smart, strong and as fearless as they come for the kind of work that he's in. He just needs to get laid a lot more. I keep telling him that. Most of us look at something and blink. In that time, he's putting together a plan. But for something like this with somebody like her?" She smirked and snorted a little, "as thick as bullshit. That's why he's got me to help."
The two of them laughed and Sam explained what she'd meant by her earlier remark.
"Oh, I get it," Randi chuckled, "it means the same as a woman to your kind of folks."
"Yup," Sam nodded, "It's been great meeting you, Randi. I've got to get going though. I need to find my brother and see if I can put something together for him too." She sighed heavily, "It's a hell of a job, but I'm up to it."
"It is?" the redhead asked with a smile, "What job, Sam?"
The short wolf-girl strutted a little, still in her human form as she was as Randi admired her for that instant, "My brother is a lot like me," she grinned, "I gotta go see about getting us both laid too tonight. Um, a lot."
See ya later."
Randi laughed and waved a little, watching Sam strut her back end off into the darkness. She wondered just for a moment and then she looked again, though by then, Sam was gone.
Just how hard could that be, she wondered, the blonde had a little body that ought to give any male a case of whiplash if she walked past them that way. She wondered about what she'd heard regarding Sam's brother for a moment and then she walked on, looking for Billy again.
They were silent after the remark until Rudhi looked over, "Will there be trouble for the killing of the ones who were chasing you?"
D'Arcy shook his head, "There might be, but I doubt it. Those guards aren't like lawmen, no matter what that Nancy woman says. They're really nothing more than hired guns out to make a gold or two in beating up a prisoner or in this case, trying to recapture one – and THEN beating him up. We also have a little immunity from malicious prosecution, since we're here working for my father to provide protection to whomever we're escorting. That quarry can't very well try to have us jailed when they're the ones who sent word to have Ewan looked at in the first place."
"I want to say something – or maybe fix something that I said," Rudhi began, "When I said that I wanted to bear your young, I meant it in the way that it would be said where I am from."
She sighed, "I am always saying the wrong thing, or it is not the way that people speak here."
"Well I'm disappointed now," D'Arcy grinned, "That's not the kind of offer that I get to hear every day."
Rudhi looked down, "Well, I meant that ... " she looked up and saw the sparkle of humor in his eyes and then she found that she could laugh a little. She lowered her head and felt only a little foolish now. What she liked a whole lot more was the way that his arm was around her shoulders now.
D'Arcy chuckled a little, "It's alright, Rudhi. I have to admit that it was a bit of a surprise to hear something like that, but I knew that you were different right from the first time that you spoke to me and it's not hard to see that somebody who's from a different culture can get all balled up when they try to make themselves understood. I guess that what you meant to say is that you found me appealing – and that's the way that I interpreted it. I don't really know why you would, but I know it when I'm having a little good fortune for a change and I think you're so -"
There was a sudden shout from the other end of the section of road where they'd parked. By the time that Rudhi looked to see what it had been about, D'Arcy was already gone, running through the trees to the edge of the road where he could go even quicker out in the open. Once he saw what the cause of the disturbance was, he slowed and slipped into the trees silently.
There was a trio of the guards, all who were left alive out of the initial fifty-one who had been chasing the roadmen. They'd been a little foolish and had been discovered and were now standing around Callie, threatening to shoot her unless they were allowed to leave. All of the roadmen were still in human form, but Shane looked to be nearing the point where he'd lose control and shift.