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Estragon was copy editor for this story years ago but I have made changes so don’t blame him if there are mistakes.
I awake to a light tapping at the door. Dragon sleeps on beside me, buried in the coverlets, nothing showing but the top of her head and one lean leg. I rise, donning a robe, and make my way to the door, a bit stiff and sore from the past two days’ activities. I certainly don’t have any regrets though; they’ve been the best two days of my life.
I am expecting a servant delivering breakfast when I open the door, but that is not what I find. Instead I am shocked to find both my father and the King, who are the last people I would expect to find on my doorstep now. I tuck the robe a bit closer and make sure my belt is secure. Something must be very wrong for them to come here like this.
“Your Majesty, Father, what is wrong?”
“I’m sorry to have to bother you daughter, but we have a problem, a serious problem and we have to act now or it could be devastating.”
“Come in. No! Wait just a moment. Let me get Dragon awake and decent.”
The door opens farther behind me, and I jump as Dragon steps through it, half dressed.
“Come in your Majesty. Archmage. Ames should know I couldn’t sleep with her awake and anxious.”
“Thank you Dragon, and no need to be so formal; you needn’t call me Archmage now. Bendrian will be fine.”
We move into the cabin and, since there are just the two chairs at the table, Dragon and I sit on the bed facing my father and the King. Both of them look very worried and the King delivers the shocking news.
“My younger brother Morbern is a traitor. He has been traveling to all the small villages and towns along the border with the Cinos Empire trying to start a rebellion. He has a small army now and if that wasn’t bad enough they have started raiding along the border with Cinos. They have crossed over and attacked several Cinos villages as well.”
“Your Majesty, I had no idea your brother could be capable of such a thing. The last I heard of him he spent all his time at the inns in the seedier areas of the city. Do you know exactly when this all started?”
“No Ames, not with certainty. It was near the time that you and Dragon arrived when I last saw him and I’ll admit I myself was surprised to see him sober. He was just leaving the royal apartments and at the time I didn’t think anything of it. Now I have to wonder if he had been in my study, among the defensive plans for the city I was working on.”
Dragon shifts nervously on the bed.
“Your Majesty, he has not captured any siege engines, has he? You know the Cinos are famous for them I am sure, and we do not need to find ourselves facing them here.”
“Yes, I am well aware of their weapons development.”
The Archmage clears his throat and interrupts.
“Your Majesty, with your permission. That civil war is partly the reason we have bothered you today instead of giving you more time alone. The Cinos envoy has come to the palace to complain and refuses to speak with anyone male. Jaxarina is with her now but we really need the two of you to help deal with her.”
“But Father, why will she not deal with men? I am not aware of the circumstances of their civil war. I know they are a feline halfling race but little else.”
“Ames, Cordial could probably give you better information but it is my understanding that there has been a civil war raging in their kingdom between the male faction, the Ruoh, and female faction the Cinos, for several hundred years.”
“Ah, I see now why she will not speak with you then.”
“What we need you to do is make sure the situation is fully explained and try to get her to forbear from attacking us because of my brother’s treason. I am almost positive the Demon is involved in this in some way and the Cinos have dealt with It as well, so that may be the key to defusing the hostilities. We also need to plan an attempt to capture the second stone as soon as possible. Since it is located near their border, she may be able to offer assistance in that mission.”
“But Your Majesty, Ames is just a mage and I am just a mercenary. We do not really have the authority to negotiate. She may not be willing to negotiate with us either.”
“Dragon, I would like to appoint you to an advisory position, no, both of you. I’ll have the scribes draw up the commissions and post them immediately; that should take care of any qualms she may have on that account. You have my full confidence and full authority to negotiate anything necessary to prevent a war with the Cinos and to retrieve the second stone. Bendrian, Vorlayin and Captain Coby will be leading a contingent of troops to try and quash his army while you are after the stone. Hopefully that will distract him enough that you will not have to deal directly with the Demon until we weaken him further.”
Eraat trudges away from the army pouting. Master sent Eraat away from all the fun. Master says to go to the bahis firmaları second stone of power and enhance its defenses. Eraat would much rather stay and play with the troops. Eraat must go now into the land of the cat people. Eraat doesn’t like cat people, they can sense his presence and it will be very dangerous for Eraat to play with them. The beast that guards the stone will be as dangerous but it cannot sense Eraat’s presence like the cat people can.
Eraat looks back one more time, hoping Master will call it back; but Master is busy with one of the cat people he captured. It is resisting Master’s demands to build machines and its screams cheer Eraat somewhat.
Maids surround the Queen. She falls feebly to her knees as another wave of nausea assaults her, yet she smiles even as she heaves and retches again.
“Fetch the King!”
Queen Sabatarria chuckles to herself, as one maid cleans up the mess and another places a wet cloth to her forehead. ‘I knew it was Rotomalo’s fault we had not conceived! One tryst with Morbern and I am with child. No one will ever know; and what difference does it make? The child will be of the royal blood.’ The Queen then screeches in rage when the maid returns.
“What do you mean the guards say he is busy and not to be disturbed!”
Jax takes a deep breath and tries to get hold of herself. She busies herself with pouring two large glasses of chilled fruit juice for herself and the Cinos envoy Yelani. In all her life she has never found herself in quite this position. Oh, she has felt attraction and lust before but never like this.
Turning back to the envoy she studies her from under her lashes once again. She is a perfect form in gold. Long honey blonde hair with cute triangular ears perking through above the temples, large almond shaped, golden eyes, short pale gold whiskers and every inch of her covered with a short, fine, gold fur that makes her look as if she is made of velvet. That the Cinos eschew clothing of any kind, and that this particular one seems to drip a raw, primal sexuality, has Jax struggling to maintain her composure.
Yelani is trying her best not to purr aloud. This human, this mage, is entrancing. The long auburn hair with huge green eyes is an exotic combination and one she has never seen in a human before. Her whiskers twitch as she inhales the scent of passion permeating the room. Jax is aroused, obviously, and has no idea how intense the aroma is to Yelani’s advanced sense of smell or what it is doing to her. Her whiskers tremble in excitement as she tries to control the twitching of her tail.
“I understand that you have a traitor raiding across our border in order to cause trouble between us. But what assurances can you give my people that you will deal with him yourselves?”
“As we speak the King and his advisers are planning both to meet his army with a force of our own and to attain the second stone in order to forestall the Demon. We are not sure exactly how it befell, but that the Demon crossed over at the same time as this traitor surfaced cannot be a coincidence.”
“We have dealt with this Demon in the past ourselves. The second stone lies very close to our border, some say it is within our borders. I demand that you allow a contingent of our troops to accompany any mission to retrieve it.”
“I cannot negotiate that with you, but the leader of that mission is on her way here now. You will need to agree with her. She has total control of the mission and which troops will be used.”
“Ah, yes, this Dragon. I heard about her bonding ceremony with your daughter; tell me now, does the mother have the same proclivities as the daughter?”
With that, Yelani advances on Jax, effectively backing her into a corner and begins gently tickling her cleavage with the end of that long tail. Jax takes her last step backwards and mentally groans, breasts heaving and eyes dilating. The sexual tension between the two ratchets up yet further as Yelani leans in to place a soft, gentle, kiss on Jax’s lips. Just then the door opens, and in walks Ames, followed by Dragon. The two spring apart but Ames’ audible gasp indicates she sees what she is interrupting.
“Dragon, Ames there you are! Allow me to introduce the Cinos envoy Yelani. Yelani, this is my daughter Ames and her bondmate Dragon: it is she with whom you need to discuss whose troops will secure the stone.”
Dragon bows over the envoy’s hand and raises an eyebrow at Jax. The sexual tension in the room is almost palpable and Dragon is amused by it.
“I am honored to meet you envoy. May I call you Yelani?”
“Yes, you may. Now, what authority do you have to negotiate an agreement between our realms?”
“I am an adviser to the King, authorized to negotiate in this matter and I will be leading the mission to retrieve the second stone. Ames’ father Bendrian and brother Vorlayin, with several of our best commanders will be leading a contingent of troops to meet Morbern’s kaçak iddaa army in the field. You are welcome to discuss battle plans with them, but as the commanders are all men, I do not know if you want to engage in those talks.”
The look of distaste on Yelani’s face is almost comical.
“That will not be necessary, thank you. I do however have some demands concerning the mission to take the stone. I want my troops on that mission, Jaxarina, Ames, you and myself along with my troops. The stone is either directly on the border or within the boundaries of my realm. I do not want your troops involved in it and no men whatsoever.”
“I can agree to all of those demands save one, and I must make one demand of my own. We will need the counsel of the palace librarian on this mission. He is the only one who knows enough about the second stone and its defenses to aid us in this matter. He is a male, yes, but he has no sexual interest in females in any way, and I can assure you he will be of no trouble to you or your troops.”
Yelani smirks at this, showing an abundance of long sharp teeth.
“I have no doubt he would be no trouble to my troops; they would eat him alive. The problem will be keeping him safe from my troops and any citizens we meet if we cross into my realm. Is he prepared to face the risk of injury or capture should things go badly?”
“That is a risk we all take in this. He is well aware of the special dangers involved in this particular mission and I have confidence he can handle anything needful in order to protect this realm. If we are in agreement, Ames and I will go to prepare for the journey. We leave at dawn.”
Dragon takes Ames’ hand and starts for the door, and turns to make one last comment.
“Have a good afternoon, my Ladies, and don’t do anything we wouldn’t do!”
Yelani’s laughter echoes down the corridor, as Dragon hauls a sputtering Ames along behind.
Looking up from stuffing my packs, I behold an enchanting sight. Ames is bent over her herb satchel and her riding pants show the perfection of her ass well. Though I will not deny I am looking forward to leaving the confines of the palace and grounds behind, I do wish we had more time alone.
The days since my healing and our bonding ceremony have been the happiest of my life and it scares me. I’ve known little true happiness in my life and when I have, it has always come crashing down around me. Now that I know love I do not think I could bear to lose it, and am thankful for our bond. It may be wrong for it to be without warding but I would not have it any other way because I know that I cannot lose her to death, for I will follow her.
“Dragon my love, I liked the emotions I was feeling from you much better when you were staring at my ass.”
“Uh? Oh sorry, I forget that you can sense my emotions so strongly now.”
“Yes, you will never be able to get away with anything in my presence and little out of it. Hm, do you think we are close enough to being packed that we might take a little…break?”
She turns and moves into my arms, those glorious green eyes glowing. Even if I could not feel her passion rising through our bond those eyes would tell the tale. Her kiss is slow and sensual, then deepens and grows more urgent as I part my lips and invite her in.
Her hands find their way to my ass, pulling me in close, parting my thighs with her knee. We grind together leisurely and I moan. Releasing my lips, she finds her way to my ear and nibbles at the lobe, her breath giving me chills.
“Mmm, you taste good enough to eat, love.”
I try to answer, but she backs me to the edge of the bed, pushing me down on it and all the air rushes from my lungs. She seizes my shirtfront in both hands and rips it apart violently, buttons flying in all directions. She has never been quite this enthusiastic and dominant before, and it excites me. I have to wonder just how far she will go, as she climbs atop me to assault my breasts with her ravening mouth. My hands reach to tangle in her hair, but she seizes my wrists and pushes my hands above my head.
“Nah ah ah, no touching allowed.”
My heart pounds almost painfully in my chest, as she works her way down my body. She stops to tease my navel with her tongue and I have to giggle. She unties the laces on the front of my leather pants with her teeth and I gasp. I don’t know if I have ever seen anything so wild and beautiful as she, with her hair mussed, tugging at my pants with her teeth, those emerald eyes glowing.
She frees me from the pants at last and settles in between my thighs. The heat of her mouth on my sex sends a surge of pleasure through me and my legs begin to tremble. Her tongue plunges to my depths and I moan loudly. Her thumb moves up to tease my clit, as her tongue drives me ever closer to release.
As I hover on the edge of orgasm she slows, backing off, teasing me and I moan again. She takes me just to the edge and backs off several more times. kaçak bahis The trembling in my legs spreads to the rest of my body. The tension is so high it’s becoming painful and I whimper and beg for release.
“Aaah, Ames please!”
Just as she takes my clit between her lips she answers me with a question.
The vibration of her voice sets off the inevitable and waves of pleasure crash over me as I throw my head back to scream and my back arches violently. I reach for her and she moves up into my arms holding me closely as my breathing slows and I regain my composure. There is no way to describe the perfect feeling of peace and love as my body slowly calms and I feel our hearts matching pace, beating together.
When my hands begin to roam her body she stops me.
“Sorry love, no time now, we have a meeting with Cordial and the others in fifteen minutes to discuss the second stone. We will have finish with this later.”
Making my way down the corridor to our chambers, hoping to see my wife Jax before we must go our separate ways once again, I notice the servants I pass giving me sidelong looks and wonder what is going on. The palace has been rife with gossip of late; it must be yet another rumor circulating. I am surprised to find two Cinos guards lounging outside the door as I approach it.
One of them hisses and blocks the door until the other shakes her head and pulls her aside. Through the door, I hear a piercing feline scream that chills my heart and I burst through it thinking the worst. I am stunned to find my wife and Yelani in our bed, my bed, locked in a sexual embrace.
I step back, stunned by the sight as my wife turns to look at me, shock and apology in her eyes. I’ve always known she has her flings with women when away from me, but we had an agreement that it would never happen here, in our home. No wonder the servants looked at me that way! I am sure the rumors will be flying mightily now.
Jax makes to rise and come after me, as I turn to walk away but Yelani pulls her back. The sound of my wife’s moans and Yelani purring echoes in my ears and my heart as I make my way back down the corridor toward the council chambers. I cannot let this distract me from the mission. We have to stop Mobern’s army before it gets any stronger.
I pace back and forth in my bedroom as Stephan fusses with my clothing. It must all be packed perfectly to suit him and there is no deterring him from it. I know it is just a sign of his anxiety, but sometimes I find it a bit irritating.
“Stephan, I’ve been thinking, if, no, when I return from this mission I would like to ask a special favor of the King. I think he will be amicable to it, if you are.”
“What sort of favor? And of course you are coming back! How can you even imagine not coming back, Cordial?”
“It is a very dangerous mission I go on now. Not only will there be the danger of what must be done but also the danger of being in Cinos territory. Yelani has promised to protect me but even she may have trouble with her people; they do not like men there.”
“Please don’t make me worry any more than I already do. Now what favor are you going to ask the King?”
“Well, I’ve never been able to ask you to have a bonding because you are not a mage but I think if the King were willing he could set a bond between us. It wouldn’t be like a mage bond, but more one of commitment and love. After watching Ames’ bonding, and now having to leave you here not knowing if I will return, I wish we had a bond between us.”
Stephan turns, taking me into his arms, kissing me and holding me close.
“You know how much I love you surely? I would bond with you in any way that I can. I’ve been thinking of something myself that would perhaps bring us much happiness if you would like it.”
“You know I would do anything in my power to make you happy, my love, anything.”
“Well, I’ve seen how much you love working with the children at the orphanage in the city, and you know how much I enjoy being with my sister’s children. I was thinking it would be wonderful if we could have a family of our own and I have come up with a way to do it.”
“Pray tell how are two men going to produce a baby? Have you discovered a way to grow a womb? You know I would love to have a whole regiment of children but I don’t see how either of us is going to give birth to them.”
“We do not have to give birth, but we will both have a part in their making. You see I found that we can hire a woman to do it for us, a surrogate if you will. If we both lie with her at the same time one of us will father the child, though we will never know which.”
I pull back from him, stunned and a bit repulsed by the very thought of being with a woman in a sexual way, but perhaps if Stephan was there and I focused on him and not her, I could manage it.
“I, I, just don’t know if I can do that. I want to have a child with you, Stephan, but I do not know if I can be with a woman sexually. I find the thought of it a bit nauseating actually. Maybe with you there as well I could focus on you and block out her presence but I am not sure how we could work that out.”
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