A Classical Werewolf Ch. 02byrosamundi©
Hal and Addy walked about a quarter mile in comfortable silence. The creek was broad with a sandy bottom and a shallow ledge of a waterfall that suited their purpose well. Addy knelt at the top while Hal stood below. She hissed in her breath when she saw the claw mark running from his right shoulder in a backslash toward his spine. After carefully washing her hands and cleaning under her fingernails with a rinsed off twig, Addy cupped water in them and rinsed the wound until she could see how deep it was. Considerably more than a scratch, but not a deep enough gash to need stitches.
"The patient will live." Addy admitted, "Where did you get all these scars? Prison? The French Foreign Legion? Jealous husbands?"
Hal threw back his head and laughed, "None of the above. Sparring for fun, mostly. The occasional miscalculation when hunting. I told you this was just a scratch."
"I would be whining like a jet before take off if I had this kind of scratch." Addy said.
"Guess I'll be doing all the fighting then. I may start whining if I don't get that all over washing you promised, now that you seem done fussing."
Addy responded by lifting wet sand in her palms and scrubbing his neck and muscled shoulders in slow circles. Pummeling as a kid and hateful comments even now by other athletes usually ensured she avoided considering them as potential partners, but Hal clearly had no such issues so she simply enjoyed feeling up his hockey player physique. She cupped water in her hands to rinse off the sand and repeated the process down his back and sides in a leisurely fashion, protecting Hal's wound. Both felt their breath quicken as her hands traveled lower. Addy halted at the small of his back.
"Hal?" Addy's hesitant question seemed to hang in the air.
"I'm yours, Addy. Whatever you want, that's what I want too." Hal sighed.
Addy wanted to jump him and ride him until they were both sore and exhausted, and had to concentrate fiercely to remind herself that a few hours of acquaintance was a bit early to act on the impulse. Slow seduction would be much better. Well, more prudent. Fucking him raw immediately would definitely be better.
Addy couldn't believe herself. She never, but NEVER had sex with men she'd just met. She had to be careful of that easy fat chick stereotype, even in BDSM circles where people should know better than to deliberately shame anyone. Addy knew she was both fit and attractive, and had too much self respect to indulge other people's prejudices. She just did not respond to anyone so strongly so soon, even ovulation didn't inspire this kind of blinding sexual need. She seriously needed to get a grip. Dammit, that phrasing was a mistake in itself, especially since it ended with her hands caressing his firm stomach muscles. Drawing a slightly shaky breath she chose to aim for his chest.
Harry already scarcely had the control to stay in his human shape and abstain from marking and mating Addy on the spot. She hadn't done anything unambiguously sexual, she'd just bathed his shoulders, back and neck. Her hands simply rubbing that sand on his back, then dousing him with cool water over and over, made him mad with passion. No other woman drove him into frenzied lust with relatively innocent touches. He eagerly anticipated what he would feel when Addy did intentionally arouse him. Like maybe now, he thought as his belly clenched under her soft hands. This was like being fifteen all over again.
Yet he knew nothing about her, he reminded himself in an effort to calm down. Beyond "evidently not jail bait" he wasn't even sure of her age, it was hard to tell with humans. Addy spoke like an experienced lover, but her enviable skill at verbal sparring might cover up inexperience. Not that he would object to playing the teacher. This train of thought led to a vision of Addy in a schoolgirl uniform over his knee, which he sternly suppressed. They needed to talk, maybe catch a movie and dinner. Get to know each other. Hal actually felt relief when Addy's hands headed north.
Addy gritted her teeth and tried to quell the overwhelming lust, "Hal, I'm sorry, I have to stop. Now. I don't think I'll be able to control myself otherwise. If you want to date instead of just screw during the foreseeable future, I need to stop touching you for awhile." She clenched her fists and forced herself to take her hands off of his dreamy body, the last thing in the world she wished to do.
"That's a good idea, you're right. We should stop. We're going to be mated in about ten minutes if we don't, and it's not a snap decision. Lifelong, life changing, especially for you." Hal agreed fervently, looking over his shoulder at her. Both still labored to breathe, and he tried very hard to ignore the effect that panting arousal and kneeling in cold water had on her lovely breasts. Suddenly he plunked himself down in the stream's shallow depth with a groan.
"Are you all right?" Addy asked, startled.
"Working on it." Hal replied in a strained voice, "Consider it nature's answer to a cold shower."
"Oh." Addy was at a loss for words, vaguely embarrassed. She decided to put some distance between them for safe measure, physically by sloshing ashore and mentally by putting on her scientist hat and looking at Hal's anatomy more objectively. She leaned against an oak and let herself stare.
Hal looked decidedly canine to her upon close inspection, as had Rob and Kevin, she thought. If "Lucy" had evolved from wolves and not apes, she might have looked similar. Hal's skull seemed slightly angular, his jaw narrower than hers. His body hair was much sparser than his wolven fur, but retained its texture and was straight all over, no curl or kink to it at all. His calves and forearms appeared leaner than an ape's and the bones more defined. Hal's musculature seemed slightly different than hers, but she quickly moved on because that was getting into dangerous territory. The hair on his scalp was fluffy and thick, a direct resemblance to his fur plain to her eyes, but not unlike a human male with wavy hair kept shorn to look butch. Fully dressed, none of this would stand out, especially to someone without much biology who didn't believe in werewolves. As it was the subtle differences caught her eye and intrigued her. He looked neither entirely human nor entirely lupine, but a blend all its own. Four species and counting then, she grinned.
"So, I know of werewolves only by rumor, Hal. Can I ask stupid questions for a bit?" she called out.
"Did you just quote Hermes stealing Apollo's cows there?" He inquired with a radiant smile, striding out of the water looking like a descended god himself.
"Good catch." Addy replied with shining eyes, as he settled himself cross legged a few feet away.
"My parents gave me _D'Aulaire's Book of Greek Myths_ when I was about five. Hermes stealing the cows then trying to trick Apollo was my favorite story, because he looked so sneaky in the picture. And I was pretty mischievous, so I guess I identified with Hermes, and the Elephant's Child from Kipling too. Pack life sucks for naughty children, all the adults have a parent's authority and they use it! My folks are Classics scholars, emeritus professors at the U."
"Small towns work the same way, it's like the Fifties never ended. I was always in trouble. Nobody believed Hermes style blarney, and everybody spanked me like the Elephant's Child, then called my parents so they could spank me some more. They didn't, they made me chop wood instead, much worse. Oh, and I had the Norse Myths too. Irish, Viking, same difference. But how can werewolves be classics professors?" Addy asked in wonder.
"Same way humans can, I suppose." Harry sniped cheerfully, then continued soberly, "People don't see what they don't believe or expect or wish to see. We're all over the place, hiding in plain sight as it were."
"Did you go to public school?" Addy followed up curiously.
"No, it's too hard to control shifting to suit your immediate purpose when you're little. Tag would turn out badly, especially since wolves can't help chasing and hunting until we're grown, and it's hard even then. And puberty...well, we're a lot more forgiving of sexual experimentation than most humans. Or at least most Americans. Although we can't impregnate humans we can get and spread your diseases. We heal quickly from all of them, human partners don't. And we're fairly promiscuous, especially as teens, until we mate, and then it's for life. No divorce, no serial monogamy, we're more like wolves that way." Hal explained.
"You can't impregnate me? Isn't that sort of the point of having a mate?"
"Well, yes, and I can if you choose to change. If you decide not to be a werewolf we can adopt children. Your body, your decision."
"Good feminist, especially since you clearly don't expect a cookie for it."
"Feminists in wolf form have very effective arguments called claws and teeth, in addition to basic reason and decency. All of which they possess well before they can bake cookies without adult supervision."
"A compelling reason to become a werewolf in itself. What about my parents, if I decide to change into a werewolf, can I tell them about us? A few fibs aside I've always been honest with them."
"My parents are going to love you, that's for certain, I couldn't make such a claim. Of course you can tell them, we'll be family. If a big wedding is expected, that's fine too. In fact, you can tell anyone you want that you met werewolves, whether you become my mate or not. You might recall how hard it was to convince you when you had already seen us shift in front of you. I wouldn't try to apply for a grant to research werewolf neuroscience. Back to questions about mating." He winked at her.
"I am your mate already, and I'll be thrilled when you make me pregnant." Addy answered softly and seriously.
"That's it, I'm officially in love with you, Addy. And to prove it, I'm going to reveal my deepest, darkest secret."
"What would that be, Hal?"
"My real first name. Rob threatened, but I made him stop."
"Can't be worse than mine, trust me."
"Oh, but it can, trust ME. What's wrong with Addy? A little retro maybe, but very pretty."
"You first, Hal. I promise I have the most embarrassing first name ever. It'll be comforting." Addy stated grimly.
"No laughing." he warned.
"I wouldn't dare, but I'm holding you to the same deal."
He sighed and stared at the ground. "Heracles. There, I said it. Told you my parents were nerds."
"Atalanta. Retro enough for you?"
Hal looked up to find her cheeks flaming. "Holy shit. Maybe there is something to this fated true mate thing. This can't be a coincidence. There should be a support group for children of Classicists like us."
"At least you know you can trust me with your deepest, darkest secret," Addy grinned, "but my parents are apple breeders. The orchard's been in Dad's family for generations, and mom's a geneticist. When I was born, they were developing a new breed of..."
"Golden apples, I presume?" Hal, or rather Heracles, interrupted.
"Nonetheless, you are well named, Atalanta. You are not easy to catch. I can't wait to repeat our chase, but this time I will catch you awake and...responsive." Hal's heated gaze traveled up and down her, all wolf despite his manly body.
Addy's heart pounded with a blend of fear and excitement even her most intense bondage scenes never inspired. Probably because Hal never stopped being a wolf, and though her cortex could trust him entirely in either form, her brain stem remained unconvinced. Arousal that other lovers needed a few rounds of sex to accomplish, Hal evoked with a word and a look. It completely disconcerted her and she loved every second.
"Now that introductions are out of the way, you can ask more questions." Hal invited, taking in her flushed face and neck, heaving breasts and aroused scent with pride. He was starting to rethink waiting, Addy's passion seemed likely to ruin him on other women, mated or not.
"Questions?" Addy asked distractedly, looking at him like he was a delicacy.
"About werewolves," he prompted.
"Oh, um." She closed her eyes and tried to think. With her brain.
Hal smiled quietly to himself and waited.
"Okay, so were you confident you'd win the fights because you're an alpha male?" she asked.
He laughed, "No such thing, junk science. Says a lot more about the scientists than the wolves. And animals behave differently in captivity. In any case, werewolves aren't wolves, we're hybrids."
"Hey, I'm a scientist! And an animal, I might add." Addy sounded offended.
"Oops. Sorry, I should've said..."
"Oh no, you're totally right about scientists, especially when they were basically all men, that proposed wolf hierarchy is amazingly apt in describing the old school guys. Devastatingly accurate, actually. Everybody wanting to win and be most important instead of say, figuring out scientific stuff. I was just messing with you." she laughed, "And my ape self is as much an animal as your werewolf self, it's just that I only have one shape. There's a lot of junk science about us too. Most people would believe you're a werewolf before they'd believe my fat ass can run fifteen miles. Or a block, for that matter. They think all kinds of weird and untrue things about fat people." Addy pointed out.
"That's strange, but I see it all over the news. You seem very strong and healthy to me. Most apes I know can't run fifteen miles uphill at their top speed. People are different sizes, wolves too. Your single shape is enchanting, and I say this with the authority of a man who spent that fifteen miles pursuing and perusing your luscious ass. In answer to your question, though, I was confident Kevin would lose because he's incompetent. Rob can take me in a fair fight any day of the week, or vice versa. He's my best friend, we fight all the time."
"Thanks, your ass is pretty delectable as well. Of course you fight all the time, scar each other up, because you're best friends. Is that why he bowed out, to preserve your friendship?" Addy asked, a little nervously. "Can he change his mind?"
"I said a fair fight, Addy. Having met you, I had no intention of fighting fairly." Hal shrugged. "Rob really is as sappy as he claims. He bowed out so he wouldn't interfere with Fate, true love and whatever other fairy tales are floating around in his little thespian brain."
That's when her stomach rumbled like an earthquake, to Addy's embarrassment. So much for their idyll in the forest. Hal stood up, mentally kicking himself. Of course she was hungry, they'd scented her early this morning followed by a long run, fairly protracted explanations, a fight, a giggling fit, kissing, bathing, conversation. He'd lazed around instead of feeding his mate or even getting her water bottle.
"Addy, I'm so sorry, I wasn't thinking! Let me run get your pack for you and I'll hunt us up something to eat. You must be famished, thirsty too. I really am usually less selfish." he promised.
"It's fine Hal, I ate breakfast. I'd love a drink though. I planned to camp, so I have food with me. We can build a fire ring and I'll start the foil packs in the bottom, then we can roast whatever you catch. Do you take requests?" she asked.
"But of course. If I may suggest, in addition to one very tasty, very beautiful woman, this wood is just teeming with rabbits and deer." Hal replied with an excruciatingly bad French accent.
"I haven't eaten rabbit in ages, Hal. And please never try to imitate a French waiter again - or was that supposed to be someone whose scurvy is making their teeth fall out? I have plans for you later that don't involve sleep, so you don't get to eat most of a deer. And salting venison, while very entertaining in an old timey way, is not what I had in mind."
"Has anyone ever told you that you're rather blunt? Good thing I'm not sensitive about my acting ability. Rabbit it is, sweet one. I'll be back in a few with your backpack."
"Good thing indeed, since you don't seem to HAVE any acting ability if that's a sample. Not so fast," Addy protested, pulling him back down, "I haven't kissed you goodbye yet."
"You expect a kiss after that insult? You're rather blunt, you know, Addy. In case my meaning wasn't clear the first time." Hal groused.
"Yes, it's a much better use of your mouth, since you are a stunning, terrific, amazing kisser. In technicolor. Who cares about acting ability?"
Addy got her kiss.
Soon Hal returned as promised with Addy's hiking pack and a few logs to find her near the stream bank stacking stones. With a few more kisses she waved him off, pulling an aim and flame and foil packet of root vegetables seasoned with olive oil and herbs out. She added a layer of pebbles, laying a scout quality fire over that then fashioning a roasting frame of forked sticks and skewers.
"Impressive pyrotechnic fu." Hal observed as she drank an entire pint of Gatorade, "See you when I have a few rabbits to cook."
He tried to sound casual, but his heart was pounding with excitement and pride as he shifted to hunt for his mate for the first time, thinking ahead to starting their family and feeding her when she grew heavy with their pups.