"What have we got 'ere, Sean?"
"A lil' red-haired demon if yer asking me Cap'n. I know you said you wanted one alive for questioning, but I'm thinking we could have made a better choice. She's naught but trouble."
I had to disagree with Sean. While the look in her blue eyes was definitely showing defiance, it would have been a shame to slay such a woman. Fiery red hair, a light sprinkling of freckles on a Celtic face and a lean body that told of hidden strength as much as her surviving the battle did. The bruise on her right cheek from having to be subdued with the back end of a musket did nothing to hide her fierce attractiveness.
"She shot Robert in the shoulder and stole William's singh dubh and gave it back to him in 'is thigh. It took five men to keep 'er quiet sir. Are ye sure you be wanting to do this yersell?" Sean gave me a look that indicated he was more than willing to give her a bruise on the left to match the one on the right.
"That won't be necessary Sergeant. I can handle the Irish witch. Now go on down with the others and rest yer old bones for a spell. Leave us here to...discuss the situation." The grizzled veteran nodded, and turned to go but stopped at the edge of the stone ring that was all that remained of the tower which had once stood on this crag top.
"Beggin' yer pardon, Cap'n, but if ya might allow me a suggestion? Yer pistol. Give 'er ta me. No need to give the bitch a chance to balance the scales. I know ya can oe'rpower 'er with knife or sword, but the gun, it's too easy for 'er sir." The sergeant's suggestion had merit.
"Agreed. Here it is. An' take my sword too. I have my boot blade if I need it and I don't expect I will, despite the spirited opposition. Oh, and leave that lantern on the stone there, please? I expect this may be awhile." I glanced over at our captive as I said it. She shot me a look that had not an ounce of fear in it. Resolve a plenty and perhaps a bit of contempt. But it held no fear and, surprisingly, no hate. This might take a while.
She sat on a loose stone that had once been part of the tower walls. The ruins surrounded us and gave some shelter from the ever-present highland winds, but on her perch the wind blew into her face and set her red hair to dancing. The strands of motion over her piercing blue eyes only enhanced the image of resolute and defiant beauty. No, this would not be an easy task. But it might be an enjoyable one.
The hard approach was not going to work with her. Give her a reason to resist and she would never give me anything. It would be best to try another tactic. I circled her slowly, and came up over her right shoulder. Heeding the warning of my men, I would leave her hands and feet tied for now. But I was not going to get any information out of a gagged prisoner.
"I'm sorry if you were mistreated, cherie. The boys can be overzealous at times and it sounds as though you gave them reason to be aggressive with you. Shooting and stabbing people does not exactly give them reason to treat you the way a lady deserves." As I said it, I slipped loose the knot on the cloth that had been tied across her mouth and moved to face her with the gag dangling from my fingers. She raised her captivating blue eyes to make contact with mine and the beginnings of a smile touched her lips. Then there was a wet splat as her spit caught me full in the face.
"Sod off, bastard. I don't hae' shite to say to thee or thy bunch o' hooligans down the hill." She thrust the words out of her throat like a challenge, daring me to tell her otherwise. I used what had recently been her gag to clean the spittle off my face and then tossed it over my shoulder casually, refusing to show the anger she was searching for in me.
"Well, my dear, then I suggest you come down out of the wind and get comfortable. If that is true, we most definitely will be here for a while." I said this as I sat on the soft grass a few feet away and settled in. I might as well take my own advice.
"I'm perfectly fine where I am, I have no need for thy bloody hospitality. And I like the wind."
That part I could see. As the wind came up she would turn to face it, closing her eyes and concentrating on the way it brushed against her face and neck, the touch of a subtle and invisible lover who knew better than to force things, seducing with the light touch rather than hard force.
Aye, and that was going to be my key as well. I was going to have to convince her that there was a better reason to tell me the things I wanted to know then there was to deny me.
"So then cherie, what might be your reasons to not tell me why you and your lads were travelling with the English? By your colouring and your speech 'tis obvious what your point of origin is. An' there's not many from your isle that would be willing to travel with their patrols. No, you had a reason to be with 'em. Or did they have a reason to be with you?"
The only answer I received was a glare from the crystal blue of her eyes. Although it may have spoke volumes about the way she might treat me if she had a knife and her freedom, it told me little else.
"The men you were with would not have come up into these lands lightly cherie. They knew who ruled these lands. English kings can go on all they want about the reach of their arms but no English dog ever ran down a Highlander up here. These are ours, and shall be until their lord Christ returns..."
At the last, she lifted her head again and gave me an altogether different gaze.
"Their lord Christ, thou sayest. Not thine?" Her voice was gentle but something told me to beware. "Art thou not a god-fearing Christian man then?"
"Looking to add blasphemy to the list of crimes they accuse me of lass? I am the one asking questions here, at least 'er now. But that would na be a new charge. I am baptized a Christian, and for my family's sake and the safety of my people I am one. That's all I'll say on the matter."
"Thou sayest enough MacCailein Mor. Yes, I know thee. Thou art a fair distance from Inveraray though, and are not where I expected to find thee. For indeed, thou art one of the reasons I am here."
"And why might that be? I've done naught to attract attention from Ireland. Oh, I suppose that I am getting my share of attention these days, but it is all from these Lowlanders who think that London holds sway over the Highlands. I've had no business west and had not thought to do so unless I am forced to actually leave Britain. Not that I have any intention of doing so." Again something told me to be wary. This lass knew more than her looks belied.
"No, Son Of Colin, I hardly expect that thou will gladly leave over these lands to thine enemy. Indeed, it is that spirit that is among the reasons I have sought thee out." Again her manner seemed to soften. Something had changed between us, and for some reason I felt as though I had missed something, like a field mouse had run across my boot in high grass, and though I had felt it's passage, by the time I glanced down it was gone.
I looked again into her eyes, trying to find evidence of this change in her manner. They were still hard and determined, but it did seem as though their focus had changed. Mind you, the focus was still on me. It just seemed as though she was looking at a different side of me. As though she were the one doing an interrogation.
I have lost the initiative! Time then to recapture it. But softly. I was right before. She has hidden depths.
"If I am one of the reasons you are here, cherie, it would seem one of your objectives is within reach. Depending, of course, on what you intended to do once finding me. If you think to slay me, I shall not allow it. As to the other things I imagine us doing together I do not think you would allow it." I made sure I had eye contact as I said the last. Not that I expected any return, but she was so lovely it was impossible not to hope. That hope was dashed by the look in her eyes and her words.
"Surely thou did not expect such as I to be so easily won over?"
Her laughter rang out surprisingly loud in the momentary stillness between windy gusts. I wondered if the lads down the crag side could hear it and what they would think had occurred. I got to my feet again and walked slowly towards her. The light was beginning to fail as the sun slipped towards its rest and the red in the western sky matched that in her hair. She was almost magically intoxicating.
I ran my fingers lightly up her bound arm and brushed them through her hair. As I did I caught sight of an odd marking just behind and below her left ear. It looked familiar but I could not place it. Well, time to explore it later.
She shivered slightly as my fingers left her skin, and not from the evening chill. Perhaps that way was still open. But first, a more direct approach.
"So, am I why you were with them? And in what manner? Did you expect them to find me for you or were you expected to find me for them? I must be doing something well if their pox-ridden commander can fight his vision past his own arse enough to realize the futility of searching me out with these expeditions alone. You can hear the redcoats coming from miles away, even when they leave behind the horse."
"Why, I expected them to draw attention," she replied, "But I did not expect it to be thine. The MacGregor lad is said to be hereabouts, and I thought that this scum of Montrose's would draw his attention."
This raised my hackles. "Careful missy. Rob is kin to me by his mother and if you intend him harm you are even more my enemy. While it would be a shame, I shall kill you before I leave an enemy at our backs." At this I drew my blade from boot top and allowed it to rest against her right shoulder while I stood behind her. If she did not believe I would carry out such an action, the threat of it would hold no value for me. Needs be I should remind her of the blades presence.
My heart caught as I looked down. From this angle I could see into her top and the delicate pink of one nipple stood out against the pale skin and the green of her shirt. I could na' help myself. I slipped my hand into her shirt and cupped the breast I could not see, and bent to place my mouth where the blade had been. She arched her back and a gasp left her. A soft moan escaped her open throat as I nibbled at the sweet flesh beneath her ear. For a moment she seemed to melt back into me. Then her shoulder jammed hard into my chin and I found myself sprawling on the grass.
Despite her bound feet and hands she launched herself off her perch and at me, her face in a twisted scowl of defiance and a cry of anger escaping her. It was brave and spirited, but foolhardy. It was simple indeed to roll aside and allow her to hit the grass without me beneath her. She tried to roll again towards me, but I stood and avoided her, and retrieved my blade from where it had fallen on her opposite side. If she had been more aware, she might have caught it and tried to cut her bonds. I was glad she had not. Dangerous enough without the blade.
"Ouch, cherie, that hurt. Seems my Sergeants warning was well given. But I do like a woman with spirit." I picked her up easily, despite her attempts to kick or bite me, and moved her over to set her back against the stone she had been sitting on before. She said nothing, but her eyes never left me. The gaze was unidentifiable. While I could see she was evaluating me, I could not tell in what way.
I moved over to light the lantern and brought it to set on the middle stone so that it's gentle glow would flood the ruins. She thrived in soft light. As the setting sun had seemed to enhance her beauty, now the warmth of the lantern cast her in a gentler light when the suns kiss faded from the skies. Despite the tingle her shoulder had left on my chin, she looked inviting.
"Why are you looking at me in such a way lass? You'd think it was you wanting something from me, not the other way around. Although I shall admit to starting to want something you possess more than I want the information."
"And art thou man enough to take it? I am not sure of that, MacCaelein Mor. Thee seemed to lose thy resolve just then..."
She said this with a look to her features that I took as only half challenge. The other half...in a bedroom I'd have said she meant to seduce me.
"A Highlander's honour does not allow a woman to be taken against her will that way. That I even thought it is a shame to me. No offense cherie, but although I will kill you, I will not ravish you. Despite the one holding the much greater attraction."
"Thou canst not rape the willing, Highlander. Simply free my hands and I shall show thee how willing I..." Her words were drowned out. This time it was my laugh that echoed through the hills.
"And end up with my own knife in my back in the midst of the passion? I think not. But perhaps we can see how willing you truly are..."
I reached forward and pulled the blouse free of the wrapped skirt that held it. My eyes never left hers as I moved my hands beneath and took her breasts in my palms. She did not resist, but moved her head forward and opened her mouth slightly. I leaned forward and accepted the invitation, kissing her firmly as I fully realized how desperately I needed her. Her lips tasted slightly of the grass and earth from when she had thrown herself at me and inside of them the softness of her tongue awaited as though I were being drawn through the earth into a warm, wet cave. I squeezed at the breasts in my hands and felt the small nipples in the center of my palms begin to harden.
I pushed her firmly against the stone and pulled my knife free of the sheath in which I had replaced it. I held her back while I ran the edge of the blade down her cheek and then slipped the edge beneath the shirt and pulled it down and away. The linen parted easily and fell away to allow me access to the bare flesh beneath. I thrust the knife hard into the earth beside us and took her right breast immediately into my mouth. I forgot all gentleness as I sucked at it fiercely and took the hard knob of the nipple between my teeth to shake back and forth. I quickly moved to the other and treated it with as much abandon. As I bit and tugged at her my captive struggled not to get away, but to get more of her into my mouth. She arched her back and turned violently to get me to switch my attentions from one breast to the other. Her breathing increased and I began to believe that she may want this as I did.
I determined to test her resolve. Pulling my knife back out of the ground, I leaned over and took her up into my arms before setting her on her knees.
I lay the knife against her cheek briefly to remind her that I still held it in my hand, and flicked it lightly against her neck in a way that would scratch but draw little or no blood.
"You have not earned my trust yet. If you bite or seek to injure me I shall repay you swiftly." I unfastened the thick leather belt and allowed my kilt to fall to the ground. My already semi-hard cock came free and stood in front of her eyes. She said nothing, but looked up at me and just stared into my eyes for a long moment.
She took the tip between her lips and flicked against it with her tongue before swirling around the head with a single circular motion. She leaned down slowly and took it in deeper with a low moan coming from the back of her throat. Suddenly she pushed forward and took me hard into the back of her throat, her forehead coming to rest against me as her hands were still bound and she had no way with which to balance. I could feel her tongue against the underside as she began to move her head back and forth
She continued to move me deep and shallow, varying her pace. I rested my hands in her hair to steady her and tried to resist the urge to take her head firm between them and drive my cock in and out and fuck her face. I mostly succeeded save for the occasional thrust when she would suck harder and her cheeks would concave. She made no secret of the enjoyment she took in teasing me with this, her moans becoming louder and her saliva coating me as I watched my length disappear between her lips.
She looked up at me with laughter in her eyes and pulled back again until just the very tip of me rested against the wetness of her lips. Then she closed her eyes and moved slowly forward. I watched in something approaching awe as more and more of it disappeared and then I felt the sides of her throat as she finished swiftly and her lips came to a rest in the red curls at the base of my manhood. My legs shuddered and I had to squeeze down inside to keep myself from flooding the back of her throat. My hands curled in her hair with the effort and I felt more than heard her gasp at the pain of the grip as I had forgotten myself. A hint of a tear showed at the corner of one eye. She relaxed and began to pull away slowly while I tried to regain my center.
As she pulled away and gasped for air I roughly pulled her to her feet. I tore the skirt away from her body in my haste and leaned down with the knife to cut the bindings from her legs. Then I cast the blade behind me and heard it rattle off the ruins before I threw her upon the ground.
I had no sense of patience left as I jammed her thighs open and took the cheeks of her ass in my hands. I pulled her onto me and buried myself deep inside her already wet cunt. I slid in easily and began to rock. I knew I would not last long after what she had done to me with her mouth and so I simply punished her hips with my thrusts, moving as fast and as hard as I was able. She began to make a sound that was not quite a moan and soon became a low pitched but melodic song as I continued to fuck her fiercely.
I pounded her hard, as though the ground might give way beneath us and we might tumble into a bed beneath. Pebbles cut into my knees and were ignored as I concentrated on the feeling of the tight walls of her cunt gripping me as I moved back and forth.
Soon enough my prediction came true, and with a loud groan I emptied all the frustrations of my day into her as I came. Joy and anger, the lust of battle and the lust for her all pulsed out of me and into her waiting cunt. Her voice changed pitch and became a shriek as this seemed to trigger something within her and her hips rose to meet mine while her legs straightened and I felt the flush of her own orgasm rush over me. I curved my back to push harder into her and for a moment it was as though we were truly a single person. I stared up at the stars that had come out while we attacked each other and wondered at how swiftly dusk had fled into full night. The stars seemed brighter than I had ever seen them, as though it were a different sky entire.
With a last shudder and gasp I collapsed atop my new goddess and felt exhaustion creeping upon me. I fought it, knowing sleep was not something I could indulge in, but it was relentless and beyond my ability to resist. I collapsed upon her shoulder and as I passed into unconsciousness she spoke gentle words into my ear in old Gaelic,.
"Rest now, Son of Colin, and I hope that when you awake you will forgive me. I have taken from you what should have been given freely, but I had to do it. Only a king of the old blood can lay with the Queen of the Sidhe and produce my new prince, and your people were kings in the days of old before they came across the isles. Perhaps we will meet again, and I can repay this debt."
Her hands gently stroked my hair as I passed into darkness against her shoulder. Her words made little sense and I tried to grasp their meaning but could not settle my mind. Just before the deep black took me into the night's embrace I had one last thought. When had I freed her hands?
"Sergeant! Sergeant! Come quick!"
A veteran of many midnight surprises, Sean was on his feet quickly, musket ready. He scanned the encampment with a quick glance. When no enemy was in evidence, he allowed himself to relax a moment, then sought out the source of the disturbance, the sentry who had called him.