tagSci-Fi & FantasyThe Wolf and the Raven Ch. 03

The Wolf and the Raven Ch. 03


Darian's night had been a restless one. Erotic visions had intruded upon his dreams and caused him to awaken several times in a much aroused state. As the sun peaked over the mountains in the east, he opened his eyes wearily to the day. After contemplating his dreams for a short while, it suddenly occurred to him that they were likely some sort of empathic overflow. He digested this thought slowly as he untangled himself from the sheets and sat up, his hands running over his face and through his sleep tousled blond hair. After a few more moments of reliving the past few days' events, he realized that his sister was probably to blame.

Dressing quickly, he made his way down the hallway towards Kaylanna's chamber. As he approached, the door opened and out stepped Tyreon, looking as happy as a cat who had just stolen the best cream. Darian wasn't sure if he should congratulate his friend for his conquest or challenge him to a dual to defend his sister's honour. In the end, he simply crossed his arms across his chest and waited for Tyreon to notice him.

Tyreon closed the door quietly behind him and took two strides before realizing Darian was there, looking at him with a blond eyebrow arched in accusation. There wasn't really much he could say for himself, having been caught with his hand in the cookie jar, so to speak, so he simply said, "Good morrow."

"Is it then?" came Darian's terse reply. "And what is it that has you so cheerful...or need I ask?"

"Her maidenhead is still in tact, if that is what you are asking, Darian." There was a smile behind his friend's voice that made Tyreon want to grin even more but he managed to keep his expression impassive. Well, almost.

"Very well then," Darian replied, looking relieved. "Otherwise Mother would be tossing a fit for the next month and we would never hear the end of it."

"Aye...well..." Tyreon rubbed the back of his neck with one hand in a nervous gesture. "I don't think Kaylanna will be coming out of her room for most of the day."

"Why wouldn't she?"

Tyreon was silent for a moment, then sighed in resignation. "'Tis the elven blood that runs in your family."

"Her eyes, then?" Darian shook his head as Tyreon nodded. "You just couldn't wait three days could you?"

"Actually...she couldn't wait for three days, if you must know...but as I said, her maidenhead is still in tact, so there are no worries. I just pray her eyes fade sooner than later, though, else Reena will definitely think that we have coupled before our vows are spoken."

"Considering that you are my friend...and that I love my sister as I do...I will help you out. Mother wanted to go to the village today and pick up a few things for the handfasting. I will do my best to ensure that she stays away from Kaylanna for as long as needed. It should fade within 6 hours, or so has been my experience," Darian grinned, his green eyes flashing.

"Thank you, my friend," Tyreon said, smiling. "Kaylanna wasn't sure how long the effects would last. She said that it could take days to wear off."

"Aye, it can at that; however, it depends on what is done and how often. If you have noticed, Father's eyes are never very pale. That is one of the apparent joys of marriage."

Tyreon chuckled heartily at the suddenly annoyed look that fixed itself on Darian's face. "Do not worry my friend; I am sure that you will find someone soon. After all, if it wasn't for you, I and Kaylanna would never have known of our mutual love for one anther. The Gods certainly should reward for that kind of good deed."

"If the Gods wish to reward me, I hope they bless me with a harem." They both laughed about this then bid each other a good day. Certainly, it had started out well enough.

Kaylanna did not awaken until the sun was well in the sky. She stretched languorously then reached her hand across the bed, her fingers unconsciously seeking Tyreon but all she found was empty space. His absence caused her to sigh and she rolled to her back, staring at the cealing. She missed Tyreon's warmth beside her already and they had only spent one night together. Two more days, she told herself, and then they would finally belong to each other fully. She smiled to herself as she rose and looked into the mirror. Her eyes had faded somewhat although the silver rim still remained. It would be a while before she felt completely safe to leave her chambers.

The maids had come and gone this morning and she remembered telling them that she didn't feel well and not to disturb her until she rang for them. They had laid out a gown for her, a simple cream chemise and a black over tunic. She contemplated getting dressed but decided instead that she would rather have a bath. She walked into her personal bathing chamber and began running water into the large round tub. Indoor plumbing was a decadence in Eritan, very uncommon, and something that she much enjoyed. The water came in from a natural underground spring and was clean and fresh, although cold to the point of being frigid. She placed a few logs in the stove beneath the tub and used a tinderbox to light it. It would take a while for it to heat but it would be well worth the wait.

She took the time to undress and smile at herself in the full length mirror that hung on the wall. She could see the marks of her night's activities and relived the intimate moments she had shared with her love the night before. A purple love bite stood out in sharp contrast against her pale breast and a few lighter ones were on her stomach and thighs. She would need to be careful to hide them from her maids as well as from her mother as she was sure Reena would be present at her fittings.

Despite her worry, Kaylanna had never felt so wonderful, so wanted and loved than she had the last few days. She was eager to find out what else lay in store for her from life as a taken woman. She was excited, nervous and frightened all at the same time. The wedding would mean that she would be leaving Ravenmere castle, her family and her friends, the entire life she knew. It would also mean that she would be in charge of her own home and that she would be the one hosting rituals and celebrations for the people who lived on Tyreon's land. Luckily, her mother had taken the time to prepare her well in that aspect of married life.

As she sank into the warm water of her bath, she sighed. She wondered about the other part of married life. The part that would happen in the privacy of their bedchamber. She knew last night was just a taste of what was to come in their marriage bed and it made her tingle just to think about it. Kaylanna lathered her hair with lavender scented soap, scrubbing her scalp and tresses before moving onto the rest of her body. Her fingers lingered on those places that Tyreon had touched and smiled in remembrance as her fingers trailed between her thighs to touch that secret place she hadn't realized she had. How could touching one tiny nubbin cause so much pleasure? She didn't really care how but was glad that it did. Considering the talk amongst the maids, she had thought that those acts were seemingly unpleasant. She was happy they had been proven wrong by Tyreon's skillful hands and lips.

After rinsing the suds from her soft skin and soaking in relaxation for quite a long while, she slipped out of the tub and picked up a glass bottle of perfumed oil which she rubbed into her wet skin. Her imagination took off as she pictured her beloved doing this for her, touching her in all her sensitive places. By the time she was done with this normally mundane task, she was glowing with anticipation of their wedding night. She dried her hair briskly with a soft towel and pinned it loosely to the top of her head with an ivory comb. Wrapping another towel around her body, she stepped into her bedchamber, intent on dressing for luncheon.

Kaylanna had just picked up the chemise her maids had laid out for her when a soft knock sounded at her door. "Who is it?" she automatically called out, looking towards the door.

"It is I, milove," came Tyreon's voice from beyond the entry. Her heart leapt in her chest as her body reacted in memory of the night before. A blush crept up her neck to her cheeks, highlighting her high cheekbones with splashes of color. "May I come in?"

She chewed on her lower lip a moment, wondering if she should make him wait for her to dress before entering. It would certainly be more appropriate. But then again, they were to be married, and he had seen her in much less the night before. In the end, she tightened the towel around her and said, "Aye, love, you may enter."

Tyreon opened the door, a smile lighting up his normally dark features, and stepped into the room. The look on his face changed suddenly from happiness to surprise as he saw her standing there, fresh from her bath, wearing nothing but a towel that clung tightly to her damp skin. The site made him harden instantly and the tight breeches he wore made him sorely uncomfortable. His eyes roved hungrily over her from head to toe, devouring the site of her. The tops of her breasts peeked out above the towel, a few droplets of water clinging like dew to the flesh there. He wanted nothing more than to find every tiny bead with his tongue then sprinkle more water on her so he could start over. The towel came only to the middle of her thigh allowing him a good view of her long, lean legs and caused him to have a sudden vision of them wrapped around his waist.

Kaylanna tugged ineffectually at the bottom of the towel, causing her breasts to be further revealed, upon which, she tugged it back upwards, and then just stood still, looking thoroughly embarrassed. She was beginning to think not getting dressed first was an extremely bad idea.

He gave her a wolfish grin. "I see your eyes have faded," he told her, hoping to ease some of her discomfort.

"Aye," she agreed. "I wasn't sure they ever would. I can only wonder what they will look like after we are married." At her own words, she seemed to brightened even more, if such a thing was possible. She had a habit of blurting out whatever came to mind without thinking about it. She was going to have to learn not to in his presence lest she die of being constantly flustered.

Tyreon stepped closer to her, his lips turned upwards in amusement. "I think you are lovely when you blush," he said, his voice husky with need. It was taking every ounce of his will not to tear the towel from Kaylanna's body, toss her on the bed and ravish her. That was what the unscrupulous warrior in him was telling him to do, begging and pleading with him to do. He managed to hold that warrior at bay, promising to let him have full reign in a few days.

She smiled at his comment as a sliver of boldness found its way into her. With her eyes affixed on the obvious bulge in his pants, she whispered, "Aye, I see you do."

The naked desire that shone in her eyes caused his breath to leave him momentarily. She raised his eyes to his and he found it impossible to think when she looked at him like that. Closing the distance between them, he wrapped his arms around her tiny form and found her lips with his. She let out a startled gasp that was swallowed by his seeking mouth then moaned softly as she reached up to wrap her arms around his neck. She fit so perfectly against his body. They were made for each other; there was no other explanation for it. His tongue teased against her lips and she opened for him, sliding her own out to meet his.

Kaylanna could feel the state of his arousal as it pressed against her thigh and stomach and she moaned softly before tearing her lips away from his. "We can't," she managed to say between breaths as she rested her forehead against his shoulder.

"I know...I am sorry love...I couldn't help myself." He ran his hands gently up and down her back before simply hugging her to him and trying to forget about his throbbing cock. "I brought you something."

"Oh?" she raised her head, her eyes still alight with her passion and now with curiosity.

"Aye." He reluctantly let her go and reached into a pouch that hung from his belt. From it, he extracted a silver ring which he held up for her examination. The large teardrop shaped amethyst caught the light and bounced it off the tiny diamonds that surrounded it. It was one of the most beautiful rings Kaylanna had ever seen and her eyes grew wide as her mouth formed an 'O' of surprise.

"It is beautiful, Tyreon! Where did you ever find such a ring?" She asked, holding out her hand so he could slip it on her finger. It fit perfectly and she tilted her hand from side to side watching it glint in different ways.

"I found it in Thanador about two years ago...it reminded me of you so I bought it and carried it around with me...It matches your eyes." For some reason, he felt silly revealing that to her and he rubbed the back of his neck as he always did when he was nervous.

"Thank you, Tyreon," she said and hugged him tightly without warning. "I love you."

"I love you too, dear heart," he said wrapping her in a tight embrace. Just then Kaylanna's stomach let out a hearty rumble. She hadn't eaten all day, and she was famished. She blushed and Tyreon chuckled, which led to Kaylanna laughing herself. "May I escort you to lunch, milove?" He asked her with a teasing glint in his steel gray eyes. "We wouldn't want you to waste away before our wedding night."

This earned him a playful smack on his arm and he feigned severe pain, clutching at the spot with his 'good hand'. "Forsooth, the lady wounds me gravely!" She took an ominous step towards him. The towel she wore took that very moment to come undone and slip precariously low, revealing a taught pink nipple before she caught it and clutched it to her chest.

"Would you mind waiting outside a moment?"

He chuckled at this and stepped out into the hallway. Two more days, he thought...just two more days.

Though it seemed like forever the next day passed fairly quickly. Reena kept Kaylanna fully busy with preparations for the handfasting. The dress had to be fitted, flowers had to be picked and arranged, candles had to be anointed with special oils, herbs and salts had to be mixed, guests had to be invited and brought in, and so very much more. Kaylanna barely got to see Tyreon at all and she didn't seem to get a minute alone either. She never realized how frustrating planning a handfasting could be and she would be glad when it was all over for more than one reason.

"Kaylanna, are you listening to me?" her mother's voice intruded on her thoughts. They had been discussing the ritual itself when Kaylanna had drifted into daydreams, imagining all the wonderful things that would come from being married. She was tired of the preparations, the details, the well wishers and her mother. She was in need of a break.

"I am sorry, Mother, I am just tired," Kaylanna said, sighing softly to herself. "I think I have it down, it really isn't that hard to remember. As long as Tyreon can do his part everything should be fine."

Reena sat down on the garden bench next to her daughter and wrapped her arm around her slumped shoulders. "Aye, everything will be better than fine. It will be perfect, I have no doubt."

"Aye, I just wish it wasn't so draining. This is nearly as bad as preparing for Yule. You would think as the bride I would get a bit of rest."

"Didn't you know there is no rest for the wicked?" Darian asked as he walked up the trail towards the clearing they sat in. Beside him was a familiar form and Kaylanna squealed in happiness as she jumped up from her seat and ran towards her cousin, Anaia. Anaia let out an identical squeal of joy and they collided in a warm hug. Darian covered his ears at the girlish giggles and high pitched screams of happiness. "Egads ladies, must you do this every time you see each other?"

"Aye," they said simultaneously which threw them into another fit of laughter. "I wasn't sure you were going to make it," said Kaylanna looking over her cousin from head to toe. Anaia was only a bit shorter than Kaylanna, her ears more pointed and her features sharper from her full elven blood. They shared the same violet eyes and dark hair and could have easily been mistaken for sisters. The major difference between them was Anaia's bulging belly. She was going on seven months pregnant.

"I wasn't sure I was going to make it either. Letherius didn't think it was a good idea for me to travel by portal in my condition but I convinced him otherwise."

"You are simply glowing, Anaia! Look at you!" Kaylanna said rubbing her cousin's protruding stomach. Much to her surprise she felt a sharp movement within press against her hand, causing her to gasp.

"That means it likes you," Anaia said laughingly, her eyes twinkling with mirth at Kaylanna's awe.

"Don't I get a hug?" Reena asked as she made her way over to the small group.

"Oh aye, Reena. I didn't mean to forget you!" The ladies embraced happily with greetings all around before Darian interrupted their happy reunion.

"Mother, Myra needs you in the kitchens. Something about needing a head count for the banquet and whether or not to serve venison or pork."

"Oh for the love of the Goddess, you wouldn't think she would need me to confirm these things as many years as she has been doing it."

"You know she won't do anything without your approval. She wants everything to be perfect just like you."

"Well ladies...we will leave you be for a bit. Try not to do anything strenuous, we don't want that baby popping out on Kaylanna's wedding day." Reena gave them a wink then walked back with Darian towards the keep.

Kaylanna and Anaia walked back to the bench, arm in arm, both giggling over the happy meeting. Kaylanna helped Anaia sit then sat down herself. "So how goes married life and the pregnancy?" Kaylanna asked, quite curious about all the things she had missed out on since her cousin wed.

"It goes quite well although being with child is not nearly as glamorous as all the books make it out to be. Lotherius doesn't want me to do so much as lift a finger and my back pains me constantly. Tis hard to believe I have another eight months to go."

"Aye, I can honestly say I am lucky in that respect. I am hoping for no more than the human nine. I can't imagine how you must feel."

"Yes, but the baby is healthy and it really isn't so bad. It is worth it just to have Lotherius worry over me all the time."

Kaylanna laughed at this. Anaia's husband was a blade singer, one of the highest orders of elven warriors. He was trained for severe battle and to remain calm and collected at all times, but when it came to Anaia, he would loose his head. They both thought this was hilarious.

"So how are you Kaylanna? The big day is coming up tomorrow morning."

"Aye...I am excited...and nervous...and happy...and a whole score of other things that I can't put my finger on."

"Oh I know, I felt the same way when I was to be wed. It can be very stressful...but the wedding night makes it all worth while."

Kaylanna blushed a bright pink at this statement. Although she knew what was expected of her as a wife, and a bit from what she and Tyreon had shared, she was still mostly uneducated when it came to her marital duties. Talking about it was something unmarried women generally did not do and her cousin bringing it up in conversation made her even more stressed than what she already was.

Seeing her cousin's pink cheeks, Anaia laughed softly. "Oh, my dear, I remember when I was in your shoes. You should know about what is to come and though your mother will likely give you the same explanation later, I will tell you now if you like."

"When did you become so bold, Anaia?" Kaylanna asked, a smile curving her lips. "I remember when you thought it a travesty for ladies to see the chickens mate in the coop." "I can't believe you remember that! We were so young then and I was so very naïve. Married life changes a woman's views...and for the better, I assure you. Or at least in my case it did." Anaia sighed softly, her eyes growing distant a moment. "I have friends who will do anything not to be bedded by their husbands. They say that men are base creatures who do nothing but rut like a pig then take their leave. I feel very sorry for them as I enjoy the marriage bed very much."

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