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Soteria
#11
She watched the gold shields of Tristan’s eyes, curious to catch some glimpse of the thoughts that swam behind them. He seemed to her a man naturally quiet; his pensive silences did not surprise her, yet the echo of the words he did speak seemed as entranced as the way he watched the water guardian’s vigil, and for that she wondered at what stirred him so. A smile softened her, adrift of understanding but content to be tugged into his currents.

When she had first told Noctua of Need he had warned her of the sinful things to be found in the hearts of man, but Nimeda only ever saw things to be soothed, not judged -- and certainly not ignored, whatever they were, and wherever they were asked. Physical need could be a comfort for many things, or simply shared for its joy. But usually it was something sought from her in the Inbetween place (when it was sought from her at all), not by those who walked the dreamworld knowingly, and who thus understood she was not just a figment of their dreaming. 

She’d accepted the suddenness of Tristan’s arousal openly, welcoming it even, but there was something more tender to him now than she would have expected of pure release. He pulled her hand to rest entwined with his against his chest, tight to the heart she declared to beat so fiercely. The wrap of his palm was warm despite the coldness of the lake’s water still tracking down his skin. It anchored her unusually quiet.

Nimeda knew only what she observed of the wolves and their brethren from afar, but the bonds between them seemed a thing deeply rooted. Such passions as he seemed willing to share with her should have been sated amongst the true family promised him -- for surely there were more suitable partners for those affections in his Waking world, where such need would be better satisfied than in a dream. He had professed to living alone in the cottage, but had seemed on the verge of epiphany to seek what the Grey Lady encouraged him to find on distant shores. The question was on the tip of her tongue, flecked with concern, but then he drew closer and it became something to remember to ask later. She did not think he could simply be lonely. He had not sought her out; she had been the one to pull him here.

If a mountain might grow limbs, its embrace would resemble the curl of his arms. It reminded her of the secret pocket behind a waterfall, not least because the roaring rush of his resonance dampened her sense of the world beyond. Drips fell from him to streak cold trails against her own skin. Even in the eternal twilight of the dream his eyes caught the light, a reminder that perhaps she should not encourage such a diversion. But Nimeda was old. No one ever said she was wise.

Her hand had not strayed from where he placed it against the coarseness of his chest, the other sliding over his hip to accommodate the distance closed. She was not without the flare of her own desires at feeling him flush against her, but though her face hovered tantalisingly close she did not seek his lips quickly; just the breath of them, courted slow in barest touch. Her nose brushed light across his as her heart fell into the rhythm of captivation. She did not know what he sought from her, nor suspected he really knew himself. Yet instinct guided where reason did not tread. 

She’d asked for his trust before she pulled him into the deep of the lake, and he’d given it freely. She asked for it again when she finally touched the invitation of her lips to his, and this time pulled him instead into her own depths. Her kiss was slow, caught to the steady cadence of a pounding heartbeat, and she held nothing back from its exploration or passion. More tempestuous flames were simmered deep, burned like banked coals as she encouraged the weight of chains from his shoulders. She pulled him deeper. It was intimacy she offered; trust that it was something he might choose for himself despite the conflicts of soul and blood. He need not fear losing control. He could not hurt her here.
"A river is water in its loveliest form; rivers have life and sound and movement and infinity of variation, rivers are veins of the earth  through which the lifeblood returns to the heart."
Roderick Haig-Brown
[Image: nimthallethe.jpg]
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#12
[Image: 49679186_402932550451133_3860079414955089442_n.jpg]

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Tristan was frozen as a troll stone. Her lips brushed tantalizingly close. Her hand roamed the breadth of his shoulders, the other grazing his hip. The sensation was light, tickling. She was so different from Long Eye, whose teeth nipped and hands clawed. Though Sierra was not far from his thoughts, being with her was incomparably glorious as witnessing the majesty of night versus day, but while she summoned the wolf, and Tristan answered the call, Sierra wasn't here, and someone else was. Someone older. Someone touched by darkness.

She was slow and careful, though he wasn’t sure if her caress was timid from fear or gentle to induce pleasure. His heart throbbed drums in his ears, pulsing in tune with the cock she surely felt in her hands. The cool air washed his legs next, though he didn’t discard them on his own. They simply disappeared. He cupped the bend of her elbows in return, trailing fingers up the back of her arms. The push and pull of their hands took their turns. Sudden as the clothing disappearing, the grass nestled soft beneath his back, and Nim sat astride his hips. The gentle rock and rotation of her legs throbbed an ache that made him groan. The call was more than pleasure. It was awakening. Then, the paint that marked him a warrior lengthened like shadows, wrapping his shoulders and ribs, stretching longer and thicker like tongues seeming to lick at her bare thighs.

When he opened his eyes, the gold irises of the wolf patinated. Black crept into the rims as if the paint had leeched from the skin until the whole of his eyes were glossed black rocks. It seemed the paint that marked his face and chest wasn’t paint at all. It was alive as sure as the poison of a troll living inside. They were the mark of a troll that lived in the Other world and the Dream world, and Tristan wanted to lose himself to it. 

With Nimeda, he might.
"Don’t waste your time looking back, you’re not going that way."
Rognar Lothbrok
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#13
She led him gentle into the arms of oblivion. Mastery pulled the world to her whim, and just as she coaxed him to let go she allowed herself the same freedom into instinct and pleasure and connection. Desire flamed for the sounds he made and for the slick pulse of his skin under her hands. She was both languorous and unhurried, shivering when his touch responded. The smallest sensations rippled, the cold long forgotten beneath the trail of warmer fingertips. Grass cushioned when she finally pressed him down and guided herself atop.

Below, darkness began to writhe, reaching like fingers from around his shoulders and ribs. 

Surprise widened her eyes, flaring quickly to a curious intoxication. The ink on Tristan’s skin squirmed and stretched like a siren’s call, licking tongues of black flame towards her naked skin. This time the blossoming of resonance was not a reflection of him, but of herself. She discovered harmony in her own darknesses, even as she preferred the light, yet Nimeda did not like the parts of her not easily accepted by others. Neither did she deny them, though. Memories stirred, of blood and bubbles and the strangest lullabies, frissoning through her with a flare of unexpected kinship. 

Captivation ran her fingers fearless toward the marks that reached for her. She recalled how Tristan had flinched away when she had touched them before, even then drawn by their ancient patterns and the stories they told. “Vánagandr, your blood is singing,” she murmured, entranced. Her breathing deepened like the realisation stirred something new in her, and her hand slid forward to find the anchor of that same monstrous heartbeat in his chest. Wonder snared, swept on a tide suddenly begging an urgency that flushed life to her pale skin. The swell of desire for him was almost enough to push her to the edge of release on its own. Instead, she finally found his newly darkened gaze.

Nimeda had never witnessed the eyes of the kin change before, the sun of them eclipsing to the blackest night of every promised ending. The gold flaked away to nothing. Enamoured and wide-eyed, she urged him closer until he pushed up to sit flush against her. The deep angle of him now hazed lust as her fingers traced the wet strands from his temples, trailing his cheekbone like a frame to the new blackness. She already knew the sting of Tristan’s instincts, yet it did not dim the surety of her touch any more than it buried the whim of her affection for what she beheld.

Trust received was given earnestly in kind, and as he had once asked her not to leave him to the chaos of the dreamcity, so she did not abandon him either to the volatility of a nature she had teased awake from the shadows. It was as beautiful to her as the alien shine of his usually golden gaze, though if it seduced her it was not without the thrill of fear. No leash waited for something she thought him better off to embrace rather than hide, but she was not ignorant either of what stirred. She would not push him harder than she thought he could go, though neither did she shy back from seeking that balance.

For a moment she searched the basalt blackness of his eyes much like she had earlier searched the gold, for a hint of the man who lived behind both. There was another hunger in her now, potent but unarticulated, and currently drenched in an incendiary desire. Nimeda did not seek such answers, though, just the freshwater taste of his lips. She murmured his name into them, unsure for which of them the anchor was meant as she sought his kiss. His heart thundered mesmerizing against her own chest, and she guided his hands to cradle the rhythm of her hips, then snaked her own up his shoulders, relishing that swirl of darkness.
"A river is water in its loveliest form; rivers have life and sound and movement and infinity of variation, rivers are veins of the earth  through which the lifeblood returns to the heart."
Roderick Haig-Brown
[Image: nimthallethe.jpg]
Reply
#14
[Image: 49679186_402932550451133_3860079414955089442_n.jpg]

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The heat of Thalia’s chest slicked against his own. His arms wrapped about her back, and his fingers strung through her tangled hair. He was pliant beneath her, melding and molding into the curves of her body. He couldn’t believe the moment was real. Although in his heart he knew it wasn’t, it was Nimeda that frayed the boundaries of what was real.

It was the call of an ancient name that summoned his eyes open. The smoky haze through which he looked beheld Nimeda’s gaze like she was fogged far away. Yet without hesitation, his lips pressed to hers as though ensuring she was still near enough to kiss. Relief rose within. The press of her hands to his temples rolled his head as though he may howl at the moon. He leaned, back arched, chest a broad canvas of hair and ink. If the blood was singing, what bubbled to the surface came alive, playing out across his skin in a symphony of movements.

The paint curled into shapes linked together in one slender stroke of black:

A cat poised with one paw raised
A raven with its beak splayed wide
A triangle inverted between two circles
A bear raised on its hind legs
A jagged mountain peak rising tall


As a sixth symbol, a trollkors, settled over his heart, the chains locked together, and a hellish face replaced Nimeda’s. His eyes flared wide, surprised by the sudden shift. While he was locked under her, he could not flee, nor did he want to, strangely entranced as he was. The hellish face shifted to that of an old woman, her hair stringy and gray, the eyes yellow, teeth sharp prongs. Then the face morphed into the tentacle-crowned beast lady of the lake. So the faces changed until at last he beheld a beauty whose hair was the river Van and her mouth tasted of oblivion, but she was not too different from Nimeda herself. Were these people real? Were they all figments of his deranged mind? Or were they all Nimeda one in the same? Did she change herself or was he inducing the metamorphosis spurned by his own lusts? He was panting, though from exertion or fear, he did not know. The symbols on his chest remained as did the grey fog through which he saw their shared dream. Did she see it too? 

His heart throbbed drums in his chest. He had to change. If he didn’t, he would snap a bite so hard as surely as if the hand of a beloved was thrust straight into his jaws and devoured on a dare.

Suddenly, Tristan scooped her beneath the seat of her thighs, lifted and laid her on the grass instead. Her hair laid dark against the matted bed, but his basalt eyes veered from hers, fearing the next face to emerge. As he lowered himself into her again, the knot of desire stirred fiercely, and he buried his face in the plump flesh of her breasts.
"Don’t waste your time looking back, you’re not going that way."
Rognar Lothbrok
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#15
The ink bled into a revolution of images against his chest. Magics stirred, not just the shifting freedoms of the dream, and Nimeda’s skin prickled at the curl of something ancient woven into his blood. Entwined deeper, even. Her eyes were round, transfixed, her lips slightly parted. Emotion crested, too much of it too quickly to understand, and she didn’t try, but her own heart began to pound as the last flick of the final symbol fell into place.

Tristan’s chest heaved, his obsidian eyes flared and unblinking. Such deep and fathomless voids made it difficult to perceive his emotion, but she did not look away. The tide swept her up into something beyond herself, and she let it pull her deeper without consideration or fear of drowning. Was he afraid? Movement flickered against the black like the stone of his uncle’s grave; looping swirls she could not discern but to wonder what he might see behind its film. Her hand hovered out, on the verge of pressing flush to the symbol on his heart like it might squeeze past the bars, but it was not fear that stopped her.

He scooped her up, and she did not resist. Her edges felt loose, like a thread plucked sharp enough to leave her spinning, and her forehead touched light to his before he laid her down. The lids of his eyes lowered away from her as he did so; it was not something she’d normally notice, and she was not sure why she did now, yet her hand reached as though about to cup the side of his face. A soft gasp stole instead for passions renewed, and her fingers caressed the shaved sides of his head as he shielded it away. Her own eyes closed for a moment, but it was the glyph that burned, and she did not want to sink into how such an impossibility persisted.

“Do you feel how hard it’s beating, Tristan?” Wonder touched her whisper for the vast stir of feeling evoked in her own chest, words falling into the silken breath of distraction for the way he moved. She didn’t know what he had seen, though she knew well the nature of the dream. Neither did she know how he perceived the changes wrought in himself. Nimeda did not submerge herself too deeply into that understanding, though it pulled at her, and if she did not put it to words she did let herself feel it fully. It was why she spoke of her own heart now, sorrows and passions roused as deep and clear as the waters of the lake. Her trailing touch found his jaw, threading soft into the thickness of his beard. Her body moved responsively beneath him, thighs wrapping, back arching, and the hot stir of his breath against her breasts was far from unpleasant, yet she coaxed him away for a different reason, urging like the guiding banks of the riverbed.
"A river is water in its loveliest form; rivers have life and sound and movement and infinity of variation, rivers are veins of the earth  through which the lifeblood returns to the heart."
Roderick Haig-Brown
[Image: nimthallethe.jpg]
Reply


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