A Big Shiny Blue Marble Ch. 30


She smirked to herself a little, "before I cause any other harm to you in error."

Barrett looked at her and as far as he could tell, she was being sincere with him. What she'd said about liking him surprised him and he wanted to come up with something to try to use to give himself more time. He thought about it, "They were second year, and they'd have gone to the yards in the spring. I didn't have as much money as I wanted and I knew that I'd lose a few, so I didn't buy as good as I wanted to so that I'd have enough to buy a few extra head. They were about three quarters grown and fattened. I'd say that thirty-five gold ought to cover my loss."

She raised her head,"For each one?"

Her expression made him smile just a little, and while her actions had caused him a loss, they were spare head, after all, and if they'd have made it to market, they'd have been gravy to him. He saw no need to gouge her for her mistake. "No, for both. But for that price, I'd want to know the name of the lady who shot me and tied me up like this."

Cha'Khah couldn't help her little grin, "Well then, if I have to set a price to my own name, then perhaps I will leave you thirty gold on the table here, clean up the damage that I have done to you, loosen your bindings a little and just go."

She watched as his face fell a little, "Look," he said apologetically, "I don't know anything about uh, black elves, and I'm sorry if I offended you. I didn't know that I'm not supposed to ask you your name."

To his surprise and heartfelt relief, she smiled, "I am not offended. If I was in a mood to be offended or if I was feeling more like what all of the females where I come from are usually like, then I would kill you now for saying what is obvious. What is wrong if you say what you see?

My skin is black, and everyone knows that we are a sort of elf, related to them as we are, but we never say this. We are too important to ourselves and we hate the other kinds so much that it is a very reluctant admission that we might be forced to make, that we are elves." She'd said the last words of that looking as though she wanted to spit and then she'd laughed at herself.

"Just so that you know a few things which may be useful in your travels, my people, and I have left them far behind me to your good fortune, are known to others here as Drow, or THE Drow. Sometimes we are referred to as Drow Elves, though that is already nearing an insult to some of us. We call ones like you Rivvin. To me, you are a Rivvil, a human, and the word is no insult. It is just our name for you. There is no love between us and the light-skinned elves, only bad blood and hatred.

What you should keep foremost in your mind are a few simple things. To insult us is to ask for your death most often. We are proud and arrogant, it must be said, and I feel no shame in saying it if it keeps you alive in meeting one of us. Most of us live under the earth in cities and seldom if ever come above. Only a fool such as I am would come out in the light of the day, for the sunlight hurts our eyes and saps our abilities.

If it is night and you see several, it is a bad, bad thing for you, and you might easily die then only for having seen them because if they come, they do not come in friendship. Most would never have the thought of it in their minds at all. We come if there is war above that we cannot get to under the earth. We come if something was taken from us, or sometimes we come if there is something that is needed by us.

I took two of your cattle, but if I was like most, I would not pay you for them. I would kill you and take them all, though cows are a poor example; I am one of the few who like the taste. I have heard it said that we are evil, but that is not so. We are greedy and we seek for quick gain, though some of the high ones are evil in my view. But you are not likely to ever meet a high priestess or a queen. Even if you did, it would matter little, you would likely not survive such a meeting anyway."

She smirked, "I doubt that I would, over the way that I left."

She smiled then and gave up trying to hold back, so she reached to give in to her urge and tousle his hair a little, since there wasn't much that he could do about it, "The difference is," she smiled down at him, "that I like you. But I am not like most of my kind. I left everything behind to come up and live on the surface. There are a few others, and some even live a little among humans, but something that you must always hold in your mind is that you cannot ever trust most Drow.

We trust no one, not even others of our kind, very much. It is a wonder that we even trust ourselves."

She nodded to him, "One of many reasons why I left. And there was nothing wrong in it if you ask my name. You may always ask, Rivvil, always. I know that we are different, but even I have seen that if all of the kinds of beings here -- and all of their types keep only to themselves, then there is nothing but mistrust and hatred waiting for us all. I learned this as I stepped out of the darkness.

Most fear us or at the least mistrust us. We mistrust others and even ourselves. It forces my cousin and I to live almost alone, but still it is better than what we left, and always I try to hold a little hope."

She looked at Barrett with a bit of an impish little smile, "Or do I bore you with all of my foolish talk?"

He shook his head, trying to hide the fact that her little grin had made him ache a little to kiss her. "No," he smiled, "not at all. I could sit here and listen to you all day, and, ..." he looked around and tried to shrug, "my hands are tied. Where else would I want to be? I've been dying to get a look at you all week so far. I'm uh, ... I'm being really obvious here, aren't I?"

"Yes," she chuckled, "but so am I. I have made an admission to you which I would never make otherwise and like everything else about you, it confounds me a little. I have never liked human males. It is not their fault, it is just that way."

"What do you mean?" he asked, "and why are your eyes slowly turning red?"

"It grows dark," she shrugged, "Our eyes turn red in the dark. We see well then. If you have never heard of the red eyes of the Drow, that is because few live to tell of meeting one in the dark. It is only to see with," she said.

She smiled at him and he was glad that he was sitting down. She had that much of an effect on him. "I have been here on the surface for almost five years, "she said, "In that time, I have not seen one human male that I liked to look at, never mind wish to speak to. You have been trying to see me all week, you said. I have been watching you for all of that time. Today, though I ruined everything, I decided that I would try to speak with you."

He looked doubtful, "I know I'm not the brightest, but I think I'd have known if you were around."

"Maybe," she said, deciding not to demonstrate, "and then, maybe not."

She leaned down and smiled at him, "But we were speaking of your cattle. You give up too easily. Drow love to bargain, you know. You were trying to buy my name from me. I would have given it for nothing, but you began this and now I find that my name has value to you."

She set down what she'd been preparing and began to remove her gauntlets, taking the spalders and the cuirass off next. She looked at him since he'd said nothing, "I'm sorry, it grows hot in here and I was getting uncomfortable. Do I offend you?"

He rolled his eyes and chuckled, "No, ... you just go on ahead. Take off everything if you like. I'll just sit here and , ... I dunno, explode or something."

"Explode?" she looked at him blankly for a moment before she smiled, "Ahh, I understand. You enjoy watching me remove some of my clothing, yet you are tied to the chair."

Barrett smiled a little softly, since he couldn't help himself, "Something like that."

He was looking at the thin long-sleeved mail shirt that she wore as she undid it, reaching behind her head to do that. If she was aware of the way that it caused her breasts to stand out a little more prominently, she said nothing of it as she watched him with a coy little smile.

"I just hate the way that I'm so obvious about everything, "he groaned a little theatrically. But he shut up and sat up as much as he could a bit expectantly when she pulled it over her head.

Cha'Khah looked a little perplexed at his expression. She looked down at herself and then back at him, "It is winter outside. Have you any idea how a cold mail shirt feels against - oh, never mind," she giggled a little, seeing the pronounced lump in the front of his trousers.

The disappointment on his face at seeing the lighter cuirass with its corset-like fit and the breast cups was clearly evident. Like the outer armor, this was a deep blue with a golden motif which began at the lower edge just below her navel and ended under the ribbed cups. In this light, it looked almost black. Cha'Khah smiled to herself as she turned to get the things that she needed. She was surprised to find how much fun she was having with this.

"How many pairs of trousers do you own?" she asked airily as he looked at her long hair from behind her.

"I don't know, off the top of my head," Barrett shrugged, "why?"

"You wound is seeping a little and it gets near to your trousers, "she said as she set down the tincture bottle which contained the antidote, "As well, I will need to use more of this, and it runs faster than water. You are not on your back now. If this touches the fabric, it will flow through quickly and stain a blood red and people will look at you and think that you are dying or something."

She nodded as though she'd made a decision, "They will have to come off."

Barrett's jaw flopped open, "What?"

"It does not matter to me," she said with a small shrug as she set everything down and leaned over him to undo his pants, "but I can see that you are not wealthy. I don't mind, I like you. I only try to think of you. Lift yourself."

"Jesus!" he muttered, but he complied, "Getting shot by you is sure turning into an experience."

Cha'Khah said nothing to him, though to herself, she admitted that it sounded like such a good idea now -- for them both.

She gave a thought to Vadren and remembered that though they loved and cared for each other in many ways, they'd often spoken of chance meetings and opportunities for what they each really wanted. He'd always told her that if she thought that she saw a chance for herself, that she should follow it to see where it led her and he would do the same.

She only looked down once as she helped to get his pants to his ankles. But that was all that it took to make him feel better when she'd given him that sly little grin of hers and said only, "Very nice."

Then she was back to business as though it wasn't even there. She was enjoying this, not so much over his confinement -- she just liked him, and she was perfectly safe here, after all. The number of ways that she could do him harm far outnumbered however many ways that he possessed to do much of anything to her. She could tease him if she wanted, and if she changed her mind or if he showed himself to be a dull brute, she could always leave.

She just really didn't want to, because Cha'Khah was feeling a little hopeful and it felt wonderful. She could look at him like this all week.

She made a bit of a show over looking at his wound in a concerned fashion for a moment and she touched his chest next to the wound as though trying to get a better look for a second. He felt it as she splayed her graceful fingers out through the hair on his chest, but when he looked down, she was removing her hand and her expression was a little unreadable when he looked up again.

Taking her hand away after giving in to the urge to feel that hair was a lot harder for Cha'Khah to do than she'd have ever thought.

"Say how much for the cattle and my name, and then remove what you would ask of me if I wished to know your name as well," she smiled as she leaned over him, doing her best not to look down while at the same time allowing him a look into the breast cups for a moment. Her long hair tickled his erection.

She knew it and moved her head a little only once. She was almost sure that she'd heard his quiet little hiss through the clenched teeth that she smiled at innocently.

"What?" he asked, "Oh, um, ... forty."

"Too much, "she said, shaking her head, "I should have mentioned that if a merchant holds his prices too high and cannot be moved, it is considered an insult to the other party."

She walked to the table with the same strut that he'd seen earlier to pick up her dagger and he stared at how she could make it dance in her hand, "Did I tell you how we react to insults?"

"Thirty-seven," he groaned, almost wanting to cry for the way that she walked back and laid her hand on his thigh as she laughed, "Why are you laughing?"

"I am not laughing at you, my new and nameless friend," she said, as she reached to move her hair behind an ear that he now wanted so much to kiss. The thought of licking it slowly all the way to the end and then sucking on it a little, ...

"I am thinking that this starts to sound a little like one of Selena's tales. She is another friend of mine."

Barrett looked at Cha'Khah, knowing that if his life ran only a little true to the course that it had always taken, he'd for damn sure never meet anyone like this ever again. The way that she looked to him, the thought made him a little sad. He couldn't remember ever wanting to get to know someone as much as he wanted to know her. It's not every day that one meets his goddess and knows it.

"Is she another Drow?" he asked.

"No," she said, "Selena is half-human and half --" she stopped to think about it. If he'd reacted this badly to meeting a Drow, ...

"something else. She has had many adventures and she tells such good tales of them. Why did you look sad for a moment?"

"It's nothing, I guess," he said.

"It is something, I think," she replied, "We were enjoying each other, and that is rare for our two kinds together, from what I know. My language is not the same as yours, and mistakes are easily made. More than anything, I fear to make another mistake with you. I have done you so much harm. If you wish, then I can do what is needed and leave the gold. I will untie you."

"No," Barrett said, "please, don't do that."

He hung his head a little, "I was just thinking that I've never met someone who can make me feel like this, and I just had a thought that I'd better enjoy it, because I probably won't be very happy when you're gone. I live here alone, obviously. It gives me too much time to think, ... about being alone and, ... wishing that I wasn't, ... so alone. My price is thirty-seven, but you never said whether you accepted it or not."

Cha'Khah looked at him searchingly for a long moment. "That is why I seek to play this game with you," she said softly, "We are different, but we like each other. I try to give us a safe way to talk after stealing from you and shooting you. I am not good with words in this tongue, so I do this. I have you at my mercy here, no shirt, and naked."

She smiled and bent down again, "You must know by now that I have no wish to harm you, Rivvil. I saw how you looked at me, and I see the way that you look now. It is quite unlike me to be here like this, but I share the same fascination with you that I see that you have for me. Do not give up so easily. I am not finished with your wound yet, and I do not want to leave right away after I am done. I am sorry for what I have done, but I enjoy being here with you."

She reached for his cheek and she leaned in to kiss him very softly for a long moment. She sighed, and he groaned, and afterward, they grinned at each other. "I have a male here. He makes me feel good inside and he even lets me talk him out of his clothes, though he feels shame to do this. I want him to know that it is alright, that I like him very much. I do not know the right way to say this to a Rivvil, that is all."

She smiled, "Ha! I have wanted to touch this hair on your face since I saw you for the first time. I have wondered how it would feel and now I know that I like it not only to look at. I was going to ask for a price to be allowed to touch it, but I have already done it. I wish to finish healing you before there is a scar, so I should begin."

She stood up and began to remove her breeches by opening fasteners at the crotch and the inseams. "That's a nice touch," he grinned.

"Well I am a girl," she said, and we must, you know, ... sometime," she said as she unfastened the garment at one hip. She stood in a leather undergarment, very similar to the bottom of a bikini, though it was fastened to the corset-like cuirass by a single leather strap front and back.

And of course, she still had her long boots on.

"God, ... Damn!" Barrett hissed.

She turned to look back from where she stood at the table, "You like it?"

He nodded and she smiled as she walked over to straddle a low stool, "I used to like to wear it because if I had to fight, it would make a male stare -- something like you are doing now, "she chuckled, "I didn't care if he liked it or me, only that he stood staring long enough to die. I saved a lot of time like that."

"I was going to ask you how much for you to take those pants off," he smiled a little, "but you've already done it, so thank you."

She frowned for a moment and then she grinned, "My bad luck, then. But we are even now."

She shook her head, "The height is wrong like this." She stood up and said, "Slide your bottom forward toward the front edge of the chair, but not too close."

When he'd moved with a little of her help, he found himself leaning backwards a bit because his hands were tied, but when she'd asked if he was comfortable, he'd said that he was fine.

His eyes almost left his head when she'd straddled him very carefully then and began to work on the wound. She knew that he was likely going to leave a wet spot on the outside of her leather garment, because she could feel the way that his hardness was pressing there, but that was fine, she thought.

It was surely nothing like the one that she was leaving on the inside.

He groaned deeply when she'd shifted once and she stopped to look at him, "Am I hurting you?"

Barrett sighed with a crooked little smile and tried to shrug, "Yeah, but in the nicest way."

"I meant your chest," Cha'Khah smirked.

"I meant my heart," he chuckled and though he didn't know it, he came very close to having his wound forgotten again.

"You must be a good boy for me for only a little while," she whispered, as she leaned in to kiss him once. Then she did it again, "I spent a whole afternoon wondering how a female might overcome the obstacle of the hair on your lip. I have never kissed someone with that."

She smiled, "And now I know that it tickles and it feels good and I am pleased to know it."

He hesitated for a moment, "Uh, ... how much would you want to do what you have to do to me without that armor on your chest?"

Cha'Khah blinked a little angelically, "But, ... I wear nothing under my, ... "

He nodded, and she smiled, "To say the truth, I now want to do this, but you asked for a price. So, whatever will settle us for the cattle and our names, as long as it is no more than thirty-five gold. I have a bit more, but it is all that I can spend for my foolish mistakes, and you need the money as well. Do not go much below that or I will feel as though I am cheating you. You should know your good fortune to have a Drowess say such a thing to a Rivvil. It surely has never happened before."

"Thirty-two," he said.

"Are you certain?" she asked.

When he nodded, she got up and produced a purse from somewhere in her breeches. It amazed him. That amount of golds was a little heavy and he hadn't heard any clinking when she'd taken them off. He watched her count out the money and she left it in a heap on the table after asking him if he'd seen that she'd counted it fairly.

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