The van Sietter Bride Pt. 01 of 03byNaokoSmith©
Captainofthepeace-Lord Arkyll el Maien van Sietter opened his slanted blue eyes and stared dreamily at the pattern of dancing animals on his curtains. Light shone vaguely through the threads of the curtains suggesting it was time he got up.
He knew they were dancing animals although everyone-else said the curtains were so faded that you could no longer see the pattern. He had stayed on in the old nursery when his father gave his foster brother a separate room and his memory's eye lay under his eye so he could still make the animals out. Every so often his father said they must choose some new curtains and he would say, "Oh yes papa. I have some important work in hand with the peace corps but as soon as I have finished I will come with you to the furnishing warehouses." After a few days his father would forget about it.
When he was married his father would give him a suite of his own rooms and he would finally leave the dancing animals to the sole view of his memory's eye. He held himself in patience about the marriage. Eventually his parents would come and say they had selected some suitable younger daughter of the high nobility to be bestowed on him. He had thought of going to court and having a surreptitious look around at free-hearted young Ladies, his parents would be happy to take his wishes into consideration. Then his sister, the famously beautiful young Lady Arianna, had overset them all, insisting on being inappropriately bestowed on his foster brother Hanya Vashin, so dear in their hearts but only a Knight in rank. By the time she had got her own way (as ever) they were on the brink of war and first Hanya and then Arrie rode off to the battle-front. None of them felt like organising splendid nuptials for the future sworn Lord while his foster brother and sister, Uncle Tashka the King's General, his two cousins and an host of friends were risking life and limb to defend the country.
His door eased open and Lisette, his mother's personal maid-servant, came in with a tray on which she had his and his mother's bowls of hot chocolate. His father must be awake already and down in the kitchens breaking his fast. Arkyll sat up and took his chocolate with a smile that made his exquisite slanted blue eyes sparkle. Lisette looked at his smile, his big muscular shoulders coming up out of the bedclothes which slid down to his naked hips, with affectionate indifference. She reminded him that his mother had asked him to come and talk to her later in the morning. This meant he could have a lie-in instead of hurrying out to the offices of the peace corps in which he was commissioned Captain so he put his bowl of chocolate on the floor by his bed and snuggled his tanned muscular body with the three scars on his chest and sides back down into the covers.
With a flick of the exquisite eyes which the gossip-sheets raved about, Arkyll made sure Lisette had latched his door behind her then he leaned over the side of his bed to pull a box out from under it. He took the lid off and lifted out a catalogue which he had picked up from a curious shop in the back streets of Sietter Town while supposedly on peace corps duty.
He was a woman-lover himself but occasionally when he was out relaxing over three or four bowls of beer with a whisky to chase them, one of his Lieutenants who was a man-lover would swap interesting details of what he found pleasurable for information about what Arkyll liked to do with women. Arkyll found these drunken surreptitious accounts peculiarly exciting. He had considered whether he might also be a man-lover but although he loved his Lieutenant and other men friends he knew he did not want to be fucked in the arse by a man. He wanted a woman to do it.
Arkyll inspected the catalogue of dildos and harnesses wistfully. He felt it was unlikely any of the elegant sophisticated daughters of the high nobility would be willing to fuck him in the arse. He leaned on his elbow, pursing up the full red mouth, sweet as a bowl of cherries, which the gossip sheets also drooled over. He only wanted to give it a try. Possibly if he got an el Wyming or an el Staten for a bride he could suggest it? but he would be sorry if he ended up having the honour of one of those notoriously slack-moralled families under his eye. He was a member of the peace corps but he was not a pacifist, not like his poor foster brother who had become an ardent pacifist after what he had to see in warfare and he remained in the bloody army because he could not bear in such a situation to let pass from under his eye his beloved junior officers and men. When Arkyll was off-duty he wore weapons and a pair of gloves in his belt. He was not keen to be forever threatening his glove to people over some slack-moral el Staten in his marriage bed.
He lay back with his arms behind his head of short elegantly cut black curls, his broad muscular chest spreading comfortably, his powerful buttocks and thighs settling back into the bed. After a while he put an hand to a softly aroused cock and began fingering his penis to harden it up. He pictured some woman with sweet muscled thighs who wore a dildo in an harness which she put to his arsehole. She pushed it up into him. Mm-mmm! The blood was flooding down to his excited cock at the thought. He gripped his fingers gently on the head of his cock, easing it up and down inside the hood of the skin, focussing intently on the image of the woman pressing the dildo up into his hole. Some pre-cum slid on his fingers. Perhaps her breasts might bounce up and down on his back as she came in and out his hole? aa-ah! He loved breasts. Ooooh! the big squashy ones, the little ones like apples in his hands. His Lieutenant said he liked best to be fucked facing his lover -- mm-mm. They had double-ended dildos, you could both get pleasure, the woman would go over while she was fu-u-ucking you-oo-oo-oh! The sperm spurted in a sticky white mess in his fingers and he relaxed back into his pillows, reaching out for one of the pile of plain clean kerchiefs on his bedside table. His mother looked so disappointed when he asked awkwardly for a few plain kerchiefs but sweet Hell! to be cleaning your cock in something your mother or sister had lovingly embroidered for you, it was enough to make your poor penis shrink and flop completely. His father turned his head aside as his mother protested and Arkyll realised he was helpless with laughter and Arkyll was able to say, "how silly I am being, perhaps you might do me a whole set for my birthday, mama?" and that very night the pile of plain pieces of cloth had appeared by his bed while his wardrobe drawer remained full of the beautiful kerchiefs he carried about in his pocket and which young women stole off him if they got a chance, to his annoyance.
He would really like to try being fucked in the arse just the once. Perhaps if he escorted his younger brother to court when Clair went to be a student at the King's University he could discreetly pay someone and give it a go? He did not want to buy a favour in Sietter Town because he was often working among the prostitutes and had become friends with most of them. It was weird to give a favour to a friend, he always felt embarrassed when he saw Dame Jayne Piria at the dances. He was sorry because he liked her and now he always blushed too much to chat with her. It was just a friendly fumble in the corridor one time he had a bowl too many and it ended up with them in that corner by the kitchens, Jayne with her back pressed to the wall holding her skirts up and him gripping her by the thighs and thrusting his cock up into her cunt urgently. He was just starting to get excited himself when she started going off and moaning in a manner he was petrified would be heard by someone so he pretended he had gone off too as soon as she had finished.
He lay in the bed staring dreamily at his dancing animals, the big-boned muscular physique he had inherited from his el Jien mother relaxed and a contented smile lingering on the full red mouth that also came from her. He wondered idly what-all she wanted to talk to him about.
I am not even asking you to offer her a formal betrothal," his mother said.
Her voice was pitched to its most persuasive tones: cooing gentle and honey-warm, the voice she would put on if she had some particularly seditious scheme on the go which she knew his father would balk at. She sat straight-backed in her chair at her desk in the library, the mathematical papers scattered about her long pale hands resting on the desk. Around them were the double bank of bookshelves with the gallery round the top, filled with the soft leather-bound spines of books and the wooden boxes of scrolls she had bought. The other desks were empty. She had sent her students and the library clerk out while she talked with her son.
Lady Arianna el Jien van Sietter, daughter of the el Jiens van Iarve. She had a magnificent figure: queenly, her head was held high under the weight of elaborately arranged curls of blonde hair with an occasional distinguished streak of white. Her round blue eyes looked directly into his slanted blue eyes with a limpid clear gaze. She was too clever to hide any part of this proposal in order to lure him in.
Arkyll sat still in the chair by her desk: broad-shouldered and muscular in the leather jerkin of the peace corps. His exquisite blue eyes which were the same as those of his infamously beautiful uncle's, the King's General whose fingers the soldiers clung to in total devotion, looked back at her from his handsome tanned face with the full el Jien mouth: sweet as a bowl of cherries, and the broad serene brow under his elegantly cut short black curls.
"I would never ask you to take such an one seriously," his mother assured him. "I tell it you plain: she is a bird-brain with no understanding of arts or literature, science or mathematics, politics or economics. Lord van Thiel has neglected the family shamefully, never taking them to court to get any appreciation of good music or fine foods, witty conversation or considered argument. She and the brothers have been brought up in the main by the mother who is but some Dame of the Thiel region who caught van Thiel's heart in her fingers when he was a young man. The brothers may be sent to some other region's army, they will have military prowess to make them appealing to daughters of the high nobility, but this young woman will never take the fancy of any oldest son as it stands."
"The poor kid must have some qualities," Arkyll said with a curving smile of the full red mouth they shared that managed to be both rueful and amused.
"el Shosta says she stitches," his mother was unable to refrain from curling her curved lip at this. Arkyll glanced at the cuff of his own shirt: only an everyday cotton one but beautifully embroidered in a complicated pattern of flowers. "She is a good seat on an horse, of course."
"All the el Shostas can ride," Arkyll acknowledged. He waited but his mother appeared to have run out of appealing characteristics which might attract oldest sons of the high nobility like himself to the honourable daughter of the el Shostas van Thiel. After a while she sighed and said, "I tell it you straight. She is pretty but she is a rustic ignoramus from a back region. van Thiel will take her to court this Winter but she will not get herself bestowed without ... something to push her. van Thiel knows he cannot ask you to be taking her seriously, he only wants the help of someone ... high in honour to secure her happiness."
When she lifted her eyes to him they gleamed softly with maternal pride. She put one long-fingered elegant hand out and rested it lightly on his strong arm above the beautiful intricate interlacing of flowers she herself had stitched on the cuff of his shirt-sleeve, sliding it down to give his big work-roughened gentle fingers an affectionate squeeze.
She had always been determined that her children should not be treated with the flattery and favour normal to members of the high nobility. She had barred the King's University from offering his young brother the splendid suite of rooms they thought appropriate for the younger son of the el Maiens van Sietter, and of el Jien the great mathematician and economist. She made them give him instead a room he would have to share with some peasant from who knew where who had got on in his studies only through having a good intellect. But because of this lack of favouritism, she knew the quality of her own children. Arkyll was the catch of his generation in marriage: handsome and wealthy, strong of body and happy of heart, with the famous kind courtesy of the el Maiens. His involvement in the peace corps was looked at askance but he was not, like herself and his foster brother, a pacifist. He was like his father: a man of honour.
"What does papa say?" he enquired, raising one dark eyebrow above his exquisite slanted blue eye.
She laughed like a peal of golden bells. "My dear," she said, "your father is disgusted by the whole scheme. He says if ar't taken in by van Thiel's wiles and he has to have this young woman for a daughter by marriage he will never speak to me again. Bear it in mind, he has met her."
Arkyll grinned at this.
"Your father will be well content to give van Thiel the No," his mother said, a quiet resignation creeping into her voice. "Perhaps I can pretend I tried to sway his opinion but he has too firm an hand on my reins for me to influence him." They both sniggered at this, the round blue eyes and the slanted blue eyes flashing sideways so that for a few seconds they looked alike. "van Thiel might still give me his counter," she said wistfully.
She had always been the more indulgent parent although she made other people treat them without favour. His father, the sworn Lord and battle-scarred former commanding officer of a field troop, had been the one who exercised a stern discipline over the children and the household. (Well, not over Arrie, of course.) But this was politics. His father kept the family and the management of their rambling castle home under a keen grey eye, sharing responsibilities for the region with his Lady wife. She went to sit on the King's councils at court and it was she -- together with her brother the King's Minister for Trade and Employment -- who would put together proposals for which she sought the voting counters of fellow members of the high nobility either through reasoned debate or by the manipulation of marital and blood kinship networks. Nearly the whole Eastern side of the country was in her pocket. Even that old reprobate van Athagine with his regional and family traditions of contorted and absolute tyranny was the formerly close pleasure-hunting friend of her husband's. If she flashed him her ankle he would often grin and finger the knotted old scar on his chin and lick his full lips regretfully and chuck her his counter. Lady Maive el Vaie van Soomara always threw her counter in with Lady van Sietter's, they were careful not to speculate whether this was in apology because Arkyll's father might have been a bit more than a friend to her once or twice. Lady van Soomara was a famous honourable slut and there was so much gossip about his scandalous father from the days before he settled into domestic happiness with his family and the Lady wife he had accepted as a political match that it was hard to know what to believe.
The one region in the East which Lady van Sietter could not count on to support her work was Thiel, where the sworn Lord was that ignorant buffton Clair el Shosta, who would rather go fishing in his own region's lakes and rivers than debate the interests of his people at court. He would be delighted to have any excuse to entrust his counter to the handsome brood-mare who tossed el Maien van Sietter's counter about. He was too stupid to understand how seditious were the democratic politics of Lady Arianna el Jien van Sietter, that proud beauty who would sometimes smile and talk to you in a cooing warm honeyed voice about stuff that bored you but she rested her hand on your stubby rein-roughened hand and lowered her lashes over her lovely blue eyes in her smile and you gave her a besotted smile back and your counter. The virgin slut. She would wave her considerable charms in your face but she had no intention of giving you any favour so small as a kiss and a quick fumble in a corridor. You were extremely careful not to offer her more than a besotted smile. That bookhead el Parva van Selaine still had a thin white scar on one cheek he picked up off van Sietter only for writing a poem praising the lovely Lady van Sietter's domestic virtue. Although van Sietter's brother, General-Lord 'Tashka' el Maien van H'las, used to snigger and say van Sietter was not troubled for the famed chastity of his Lady wife: pure as the snow-fed streams flowing into the River Arven. He felt slighted because el Parva had failed to realise he was the one kept their castle home in such good order, not her. ("Ho ho ho! what a story, that jolly dog Tashka el Maien was a joker alright. That story about the farmer's daughter, eh, eh? Er um .... Did I ever tell you about that time Tashka el Maien and Commander-Lord el Gaiel van H'las took my encampment to save el Jien van Vail from a practice raid I had planned? Ho ho ho!")
Lady el Jien had a raft of proposals coming through key to her principled plans of humanist reform and suddenly Commander-Lord Clair el Shosta van Thiel, formerly of Second Thiel, had appeared at the gates of Castle Sietter, reluctantly making his way to court when he would much rather stop on a two-three weeks in the famous hunting territory of the Sietter Hills and then just go home. He wandered into the library and sat down at Lady el Jien's desk, looking at her with an hangdog expression of anxiety in his brown eyes and twirling his precious voting counter in a fidgety careless manner among her mathematical papers. When she sent the students for some fresh air and the clerk to get them tea and biscuits, he blurted out an extraordinary appeal to her.
Now here was her handsome bright-eyed laughing son lounging in the chair by her desk in the rough utilitarian peace corps jerkin which on his fit big body made the silly maidens sigh and throw themselves into languid attitudes as he walked by. He grinned and said, "so van Thiel wants me to ... sniff around the young Lady's skirts to get the other dogs coming sniffing."
Her pale warm face twitched in distaste. She sighed and admitted it.
"Perhaps you might consider it a day or two," she said in a forlorn voice. She lifted her proud head: fair daughter of the el Jiens who had not chosen what man would take her hand in marriage and her favours in his bed, whose marriage had brought great renown and prestige to her oldest brother the sworn Lord of Iarve and only incidentally happiness to herself. "The poor young woman," she said softly. "She is awkwardly situated."
The kind-hearted Captainofthepeace-Lord Arkyll el Maien van Sietter of the peace corps gave an heavy sigh and turned his exquisite slanted blue eyes aside.
As he strolled into the huge echoing stone entrance hall out of the corridor leading to the castle offices, the chapel and the library, the flash of a smile caught Arkyll's eye. He turned his head and gave her a surreptitious grin back. Tisha, the kitchen-maid. His first lover. She sauntered off into the kitchen corridors, he watched her through his lashes, the warm grin dancing in his eyes and on his sweet red mouth.
When that little snake Arrie revealed to their mother that he was pinning Tisha's favours he had the most dreadful difficulty persuading her to allow Tisha to stay on in her job. That cat. She only told because he had refused to ford the Arven in flood with her so she could go riding in the hills beyond. Angels of Hell! the bloody river was nearly in full spate, his father would have nailed him if he had let her go in the spuming waters, Hanya had gone pale when he described it. And the little snake, she picked a moment when his father was away to let it slip that he was pinning the favours of one of the servants.