by Ruth Davis Hays 2011 (from the Worlds of Jorthus fantasy series)
After agreeing to help ‘Khiall escape the monastery, Daviel is confronted by his own attractions and weaknesses. He has a gift for his friend, but emotions run amok as he attempts to present ‘Khiall with his offering. (Mature content)
He was naked under the starched sheet when he heard the soft metal tickle of his door being unlocked. Standing, Daviel threw on his nightshirt as the low torchlight from the corridor crept into the room. He glanced at his nightstand, to the small brass and gold spindle that twirled in constant rhythm inside a collection of measured gears as it ticked off the hours. Returning his attention to the door, he was not surprised to see ‘Khiall storm in and shut the door a bit too harshly. Daviel flinched at the noise.
“You’ll wake someone.”
‘Khiall paced, a wild animal thrashing at the bars of his cage. “Looks like I already did,” he said, toneless and tense.
“What are you doing here?”
On his next round of the room, ‘Khiall slammed a fist into the stone wall. “They won’t tell me anything!”
“About what? Who?”
“I just wanted to know if they had heard from my family, and the keckers won’t say a word. They just push me back to my cell.”
“The Blessed Fathers? When? Was it about your sister?”
“What’s with all the questions?” ‘Khiall fumed. His pacing stopped and his eyes bore into Daviel. “Yes, it was about her. I had a nightmare and asked … Nevermind.” He threw up his hands and slapped the side of Daviel’s writing desk, tipping it.
“Stop,” the young human stepped up to him. “You’re going to break something and I’ll get blamed for it!”
“I have to hit something.” ‘Khiall growled, his fist moving towards the chair.
Daviel slapped his hand away and shoved the fae. “I said stop.”
‘Khiall, enflamed, shoved back. Daviel stumbled from the force, his heart beginning to race. Now, he knew why ‘Khiall had come here. Lunging, he took a swing at the fae’s head, his fist captured in an instant. The two grappled, Daviel providing the outlet for ‘Khiall’s anger as they fell over furniture and blocked blows with increasing fervor.
It took only moments before the acolyte was on his back with the fae’s hand gripping his throat. Struggle as he might, Daviel could not break the hold and he began to panic. The sight of ‘Khiall straddling him, the blue eyes reflecting moonlight, caused a flood of conflict within. Would ‘Khiall kill him? Did he want him to?
Leaping away, the fae was suddenly crouching against the wall, panting. Daviel sat up, rubbing his neck.
“Did you just get aroused?” ‘Khiall asked, his eyes wide.
Scooting to the opposite wall, self-consciously, Daviel returned the accusation without answering it. “Did you?”
“Thought you were spouting off about being above these base urges the other day, you sanctimonious little figshat?” He heard Khiall’s taunting hiss from the shadow.
“Who says I’m having urges?” Daviel tried to sniff in indignation. A soft chuckle caused him to bite his lip.
“Your erection does.” Khiall had evidently forgotten his anger.
Daviel decided to retaliate since the fae was not running from him. “Mere reaction. At least, I have a rod. Do you?”
“Better ‘an yorns.” The fae laughed the countryside slang aloud.
“Hard to prove that when there’s nothing to show, fae.”
“I don’t have to prove anything; it’s what got me sent here, remember? At least, mine’s been used.”
“I still don’t see anything to brag about.” Daviel smirked, climbing to a stand. He liked seeing ‘Khiall on the floor still, it was a commanding view.
“Right,” the fae said, his grin dropping sideways. “Because you don’t fall in for those nasty little urges. You’d never be caught because you don’t even have them. You are so much better than me. Prove it.”
They were inches from each other, the quiet dare wafting between them.
Entwining the short black waves on the fae’s head, Daviel captured those mocking lips with his, kissing hard in his decadent attack. Although Daviel initiated, Khiall took command like he always did, forcing Daviel’s compliance. Tempting his guilt, they struggled against one another. Frantic gropes followed vicious challenges.
Daviel was reduced to begging for humiliating reprimand because of his former folly. He had been wrong, so wrong. He suffered from the same base desires as everyone he had ridiculed. Was suffering miserably.
The fae gripped his shoulders and shoved him away. Hard.
Confusion and anger splashed Daviel in the face while his body was tingling with promised lechery. Refusing to accept this sudden dismissal, he snagged the fabric of Khiall’s sleeves and dragged him back, craving the contact despite the resistance. The sweet salt of Khiall’s skin luring a bravery out of Daviel that he had never experienced before. His lips sought out the pulse on the fae’s neck, grasping him close amid wriggling shoves. Now it was his turn to make his tormentor uncomfortable. make him squirm.
Daviel realized that he was tempting the tiger. The fae was better at this play than he would ever be. Burning lips brushed his neck and the tender flesh of his throat, eliciting moans that vibrated against the fae’s mouth. The thin layers of their nightshirts blending heat as his groin felt the provoking press of the fae’s hip.
Then a cold absence clutched him. ‘Khiall was backing up. Daviel squeezed his eyes shut before being exposed to the flashing grin of his teasing companion.
“You are such the saintly emmissar, Daviel.” ‘Khiall’s voice was low and gruff. “But, you still haven’t gotten a rise from me yet. Maybe you need more practice alone with your denial, you priestling lecher.”
“I bet you twenty silver pents I could make you rise,” Daviel goaded. His brusque attempt to prolong this contest tumbled out before he had a clear idea of what he was saying.
‘Khiall crossed his arms, but stopped his exit. He laughed. “I’d like to see that. But, I don’t think you have twenty pents, since your scrawny virgin self is going to lose that bet.”
Stinging from the virgin remark, Daviel tried a different tactic to please. He scurried to his desk and pulled out a parchment with scrawled images on it. “I have plenty of pents. But here, I made a map of the area for you. I copied it from the wall-hanging in the back of the library.”
Hands unfolding the paper gingerly, ‘Khiall’s mouth dropped open. “By the Worm of Dreal. I really could kiss you for this!”
“Sure, but we both know I’ll be faking it,” Daviel joked. He was glad to hear a chuckle from ‘Khiall.
“Nice try, but my stock is still not at attention. You lose the bet.” ‘Khiall smirked as he tucked the paper into the pocket of his nightshirt and moved to exit.
“That wasn’t what I was talking about.”
‘Khiall looked concerned. “You’re serious, aren’t you?”
“Sit down,” the human ordered. “Apparently, I know something about fae that you don’t.”
Now ‘Khiall was curious. Cautious, but curious. Daviel watched him sit on the edge of the bed. He crawled up to kneel behind the fae. He was curious himself, to see if the book he read in the library had been correct. It was a vague anatomy volume that touted with confidence the carnal secrets of faery kin.
“You going to give me a haircut?”
“Shut up and get your money ready.” He liked having ‘Khiall under his control for once.
“I don’t have any money and you know it.”
Daviel ran his fingertips down the long curve of the fae’s ears. He saw the pale body shudder.
“That tickles, damn it. What the hell is this supposed to do?”
He pressed harder, his hands cupping the eartips and was rewarded by ‘Khiall gripping the edge of the cot. A groan escaped the skeptical figure. Daviel grinned. Perhaps he would prove who was less stalwart yet. He wanted to see his rival uncontrolled and at the mercy of his passions. That would be glorious and worth gaining twenty pents.
A tremble shook on the small bedframe as ‘Khiall’s body curled forward and rocked. Daviel increased his pressure on the fae ears. He was going to claim victory, when his world became a blur of ceiling and blood.
Nails pierced his scalp and shoulder as the fae flipped on top of him. The acolyte screamed in shock, scalding lips against his neck, teeth opening, tearing his skin.
“Gods below, ‘Khiall!”
The next instant, the fae was against the wall again. His eyes betrayed his own shock at the occurrence.
“White Stars!” Daviel gasped, glancing at the smear of blood on his fingertips after touching his throat.
“Don’t touch my ears.” ‘Khiall was breathless. His words were not coming to him easily. He stumbled in his reiteration of the command before he tumbled out the door and ran to his own dismal cell. The hall became alight with torches and a bell rang out.
Daviel cursed and railed against the sting of the injury that was overlapped by the persistent throb of his squelched sexual ambitions.
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