The Seduction Plan Ch. 11byPlainJane12©
We prepared the horses. I rode Greystone, and he rode Blackwood. We were going the long way around, through the desert and up through the canyons that would be unprotected – too dangerous to be covered by the likes of the resistance. For a long while, we were silent – focused on the ride, what was coming. We began to slow as we neared the canyons.
I looked over at Eric. He didn't need to look back to notice my stare. "What is it, Dor?"
"Tell me what happened?" I asked. The sun was setting, and he rode close to me.
He looked at me then. He shrugged. "It's a long story. I don't know where to start, really." He stopped looking at me. –Part of it seemed like he was looking around for a memory. But there was also something about it that seemed guilty. "I guess it starts with your dad. –Trying to abolish slavery. He knew my people were against it – well, that's a lie. Most of my people are against it. And then others... well. See Dor, there's good people in the universe and bad."
I gave him a low, annoyed stare. Yeah – I was a little bit aware that there are both good people and bad people in the world.
He sighed, realizing how he sounded. "Let me start over. Your dad and I were friends, and,"
"Impossible!" I interrupted. "You were just a little boy when he was killed. I would have known you."
"This was another life, Dor. Could you just listen?"
"Okay," I answered, unsure how my question was going to be answered when nothing he said made any sense.
"I met your dad on another world, long ago. He was an amazing person, your father. You see, everyone had thought this world was just full of primitives. Some people, some of the bad people came here anyway, for vacations – in order to enjoy a primitive lifestyle for a short period of time. –This quickly became illegal, and even before it was illegal they weren't allowed to go about changing things. Still, sometimes equipment would get lost on the planet and your dad – one of the so called 'primitives,' he actually figured a lot of our stuff out. No education – just collected and tinkered with forgotten toys until one day he used our science and our magic to come to one of our planets.
"That's how we met. After that, well, there's a lot to that story, a lot. ...But after a while he revealed that he was in line to be king, and he had to go home and assume his duties. I was actually, kind of pissed about that. He was probably," Eric said, with a face almost like he was laughing at himself, laughing in sadness, "...probably my best friend." He smiled at me. "Until I met you."
I shifted in my saddle, suddenly blushing, suddenly feeling the strange crawling wonder of being loved when you don't deserve it.
He went on, "Anyway, he came back to this planet and got married and became king. We still talked... all the time at first, but you know friends. You're thick as thieves and then someone leaves... We used to talk about all sorts of things. And he never did believe in slavery and I encouraged him to put an end to it – he was king after all. Not that I had any clue what that meant. I had never been here; I didn't know what it was like. Everyone said it was a primitive planet, but my friend had always been evidence to me that it was not. I never imagined that this world would be so untamed, that he was in so much danger that he never spoke of. ...If I had known, Dor. God, Dor. I swear, if I had known the danger I'd have been here so much sooner. I'd have come back with him."
Quietly, I said, "It's okay," but something in my stomach kept my voice low, wondering what exactly I was forgiving here, worried that it might be too much.
"I remember how excited he was that it was finally happening. –That he was finally going to bring an end to it all. I was happy for him. ...And a little. Dor, you haven't had anyone but me. You don't know what it's like to have thousands of so called friends, keeping up with them decade upon decade. You don't worry about the happy ones, Dor. It becomes like a chore. It shouldn't be a chore, but, you put the happy ones on the shelf, and just sort of bother to say hello on holidays – check in, see if everything's okay. Then his letter came.
"He was worried. There had been attempts on his life. –Threats to his children and wife. And he had the suspicion that he was threatened by someone not of his own world. When he had been on my planet, the most your father ever asked of me was to explain something. He wanted to learn. But he never asked for help, not for real help, not for something more than a definition or instruction. In his letter, he asked for help. I remember seeing the words, and – I don't know. I'd never been so cut with fear by written words before. Maybe something in me knew. I think I might have been connected to this world by those words – by the ink on the paper that had come through the portals.
"I prepared to leave, to come to this planet, to help your father. But I was old by then, and slow – and the body I had been building to inhabit next wasn't quite ready. My people, ages ago, found they could transplant brains from body to body in order to save minds whose bodies were lost. –It wasn't a popular practice at first given that it required a donor. But we have since learned how to grow mindless bodies, and with certain magics we can retain the flesh of our brains somewhat indefinitely. Anyway, it's rather frowned upon to change bodies before your new one has reached adulthood. –For a few reasons. It doesn't really matter. But... I hesitated. It was illegal to travel to your father's planet and I wasn't sure I was up to it in my current condition. I was afraid, Dor. I had heard word they were permanently closing off entry to your world. –One of many in a campaign to end corruption.
"By the time I got over it – my fear, it was too late. Still quite old, I traveled with my new body in tow, here – only to find your family murdered by a madman from my planet. He was setting up shop. He had heard about how the routes between our many worlds and this one were going to be closed, and he imagined it a good opportunity to remake himself in the form of a deity. I confronted him. He nearly killed me. But I was older and meaner and very upset that my friend was dead. So I killed him. Of course, then I began to die, and I ended up having to make the transfer to my new body, and in the process I missed my chance to go home.
"I was stuck in this not quite adult body, on a strange planet, with no connections. I went on a walk – tried to learn what I could, and what I learned was that... scared as the people were of the master – the man who had destroyed their government and world – they were more scared of not knowing what was going to happen next. They still worried about laws and if there would be food to eat, whether they could raise their kids in peace, run any sort of business. They didn't want any more upheaval. They just didn't want to be scared anymore.
"So I built a palace, where the Master could stay – far away from the villages and towns. I made sure that when the Master sent an army, that it was menacing, but did no wrong. The people, I thought, would begin to believe that the Master was there and would have his way, but that they could go about their lives in peace. I didn't think the chaos of anarchy would be a good thing. But I didn't want to introduce myself, or a stranger as yet a new leader." He stopped, dismounting from his horse. I followed suit – surprised suddenly that we had already reached the canyons.
He helped me down, and began unpacking his pack, grabbing some food and a blanket. He continued, "And for a few years, I never even thought about living beyond this body because I was certain this was hell. –My punishment for failing a friend. And then you showed up. –Jaded and compassionless, sarcastic and impossible to impress. -Also pathetic, and weak and sad – sadder than me. You never cared how depressed I was." He set out a picnic on the ground, easily – like we were discussing math and not how sad we were that my family was dead.
"Thank God for you." He pulled me into him. "I have you, I have you, I have you," he said into my hair.
We sat at his picnic. –Our last meal before facing Saymar and Gravlor's Peak. "I think you know the rest," he said. "You and me against the world... I had heard rumors about there being a survivor, a princess. But the most I learned was that she was some wild ghost living in the desert sands."
"And you didn't make the connection?" I asked, chuckling a little at the idea.
"I guess I didn't think of you as belonging to this world. At first..." he trailed off, shaking his head.
"I sort of worried that I was going crazy. –That I had imagined you."
"How long did that last?"
"Up until that time you tripped and fell down the stairs. Remember? You had only been at the palace for a couple months, but..."
"I remember," I replied flat. –That had sucked. He gave me healing apples almost immediately, but that didn't erase the memory of the pain, or the sheer embarrassment. I don't know how that happened. I was just walking and I knew there were stairs, but somehow! Bloop! I ended up rolling down hard marble steps at break-neck speed for what felt like half an hour. That had sucked.
"Nothing I ever imagined, made up in my own head, could have every in million years, been that spontaneously clumsy."
"Yeah, I get it," I said.
"Seriously, Dor – you just kept rolling!"
"Yeah, I remember. I told you, I remember."
"I would have stopped it, but it all caught me off guard! It's like my brain shut off out of surprise."
"And here you were an assassin all along."
"Obviously you were completely safe, bumbling as I was."
He pulled the sandwich out of my hands and threw it into the dirt.
"Hey!" I said, pointing to my sandwich. I then felt a breeze.
I looked down.
I looked back at Eric. "Eric, no – we have to save Dartix." I covered myself with hands as best I could, looking around to make sure there wasn't an audience.
"I won't be able to do things like this on Gravlor's peak. The stone there will inhibit my abilities. I can't believe this, Dor. You know how long I waited to be able to be like this? And now we're marching off to a place where..."
"Where we'll save Dartix very, very quickly, then come home where you can do anything you want to me."
He seemed to move his tongue along his teeth a moment, and his eyes went dark. His clothes suddenly began to melt away from him from the shoulders down. Boy he looked good. And then I saw how much he wanted me. It was a lot! "We won't make it there without camping for one night anyway," he said, voice low. "We have to rest sometime."
He smiled at me, and reached out to pull me toward him by the arm. He kissed me. "If I don't make it," he began.
"Take me with you," I said.
I pulled his face closer, kissed him, and said, "If you aren't going to make it, take me with you."
"Dor, you're not," he began again. Again I interrupted him.
"You promised me, as my husband, never to leave my side and never to let me leave yours. If you don't make it, there'll be no one to save me from Saymar."
"You'll save you from Saymar!" Eric declared gruffly, pulling away. "You're my badass, Dor. You're my assassin. You found the man you thought murdered your family and doggedly pursued ending his life for nearly fifteen years! You live in the desert with the Master of the Realm. You fought the monster horse and won!"
"I don't remember it that way," I pointed out, "In fact there's a lot about that monster horse thing I don't remember because I think it stomped my brain." But, I did have to admit, inwardly, hearing him say it out loud – that I was a badass - reminded me. –It was true.
Sure, I wasn't great at being a badass. A monster-horse thing had stomped me pretty good. But, I was one. I was Eric's badass.
"I love you, Dor. I'll die for you, easy. And there's a larger number of people I'd kill for you in existence than what little good that's left of me wants to admit. But there's still some people I wouldn't kill for you too, Dor." He took my face in his hands. "And you happen to be one of them."
"You don't really think there's a chance you'll die? You seemed confident about it before – when you were pretending to be Seamus."
He smiled, rolling his eyes. "I have a feeling that they're not going to be so trusting of Seamus, who should have arrived at Kedmirl Castle about the same time the Master spontaneously disappeared the princess and freed Dartix, and of course – never showed up."
"Well, you could make a..." Wait. I had an idea.
It was an awful idea that would never work... but...
Eric was pushing me to lie down.
"Eric, I have an idea."
He straddled me, and I was suddenly distracted by the sensation of feeling him draw his sensitive parts along the length of my stomach as he brought himself closer and closer to my chest and mouth. Oddly enough my mouth was watering, and not so oddly I felt achingly empty down below. Concentrate, Dor! "Eric," I said.
He pressed my breasts beneath his palms, before drawing them up and rubbing his male hardness between. My whole body tingled, and my arms and legs and eyes were confused – I had no idea what to do with any of them. A strange wave of warmth slid through me, and I slowly realized, dazedly - that he was using magic again, as he had with the back rub. "Oh shit, Eric."
He slung a hand behind my neck to guide me to take him in my mouth. He was so large up close, and for the first time I felt him press against my lips this way. –Soft skin, but so hard still, and the taste... I would have never expected it. He tasted the way my body felt. I felt delicious. My body was unlinking, melting with pleasure. I think my insides had begun to mix into something better – something magic. The earth shifted beneath us until I was propped up, his knees sunk into the dirt beside my ribcage. I kissed, licked, worshipped him and then he pulled away just long enough to bring his mouth to mine.
He sunk into me and I thought I would disappear.
"We're one, Eric," I managed to say.
He kept moving. His mouth was on my neck and my face.
"We're both getting through this," I said.
"Yes," he replied.
"You won't have to do anything to me," I said. "What happens to you will happen to me anyway."
He paused above me, his steel grey eyes staring into mine.
"And vice-versa," I added. "So, no need to worry. I'm badass enough to get us both out of this. I have a plan."
He grinned, and that was enough to put me over the edge. My breath caught in my throat, and I gripped his upper arm in my hand like it was a rope I was trying to climb. –Only difference was that his arm was too thick for me to get my hand around, and the feel of his arm in my hand made me want him even more.
Suddenly he was filling me with his seed, his face strained, and I came again, just knowing that I was his, and that what was his was in me.
"Another plan from Dor?" he asked sardonically. "We're saved."
"Hey," I said, wiggling beneath him demonstratively. "Looks like the Seduction Plan worked out pretty well."
"The seduction worked. I don't know about the plan."
I ran my fingers through his hair. "The old plan was to kill you. The new plan is to save Dartix, go home, and be a family. I like the new plan better."
"Oh," he said, grinning that impossibly beautiful smile again. "I like that plan too."
He started to kiss my face again. I kissed him back. His eyes were perfect. His mouth was perfect. ... "So wait, did you say that you just change bodies when you die?" I asked.
"Do you look different every time?"
"Uh, sometimes there's slight changes. Once I was missing a toe," he offered.
"Ew," I said.
"Yeah, I was a little put out myself." He rolled off me, onto his back. But his arm was beneath me, around my shoulders. Night was closing in, but the sky was still pink and dotted by early stars. Warm, comfortable clothes spread over our bodies.
"Someday, we'll both get old and die, but you'll go on. You'll get your new body when I'm gone and Dartix is old. You'll still be around to take care of things, once I'm gone."
"I'm taking you with me. Forever. –As long as I survive this, of course." He drew his nose along my cheek.
"You will," I said.
I rolled onto my side and began to whisper to him.
I finally had a plan that I wanted to succeed.