A Mere Misunderstanding

Sated. Peace. This was better than any fantasy she could have envisioned; the sun, Kendall, passion unbridled… "I love you," she breathed against his skin, her words more felt than heard. Her body molded to accept the weight of him, enjoying the feel of him atop her and… Was that??? Margot froze; her entire body becoming rigid.

Kendall's lips leave her neck as she tautens again, the tension in her body entirely different than what had made her cling to him just heartbeats before. He levers himself up and away from her, weight supported on one elbow as he rolls to the side. He searches her face, his own expression a mix of concern and curiosity. "Margot?" he asks. "Is something amiss?" The hand not supporting his weight comes up to cup her cheek, turning her head so that he can look fully at her.

She searched his eyes, and though clearly she was not upset by his touch, something had filled her with distress. Her lower lip was snatched by her teeth as her confirmation came by way of his shifting and severing their union. Long lashs knit together and behind lids she fought to suss out what, if any, meaning there was or if her mind was twisting her in knots senselessly. "I… am … uncertain," she began slowly, lifting her eyes to him. One hand moved to his heart, the other smoothed the worry from his brow.

How could she possibly be embarrassed? Lying here naked, under the sun, after phenomenal love-making. Still, she steeled herself for her innocent and still not so innocent question. "Did you… Were you… I mean, I… very much love the feel of you when we are joined…" she began carefully, leaning forward and pressing a kiss to his skin, shielding her eyes from his. "I… we… you have never remained united with me while your pleasure peaked. It was a euphoric sensation. One that I would prefer… if it was your desire to do so… now." Another kiss fell from her hidden face to his chest.

For all that he was accustomed to following the decorative, circuitous, and sometimes torturous ways that words might be knit together, Margot's painfully shy attempts to speak about something that was — for him — commonplace, were at the same time puzzling and utterly beguiling. He knew she would soon fall into the sleep of the bone-weary, a sleep both exhausted and sated. And yet, as she nuzzled closer to him with downcast eyes and hesitant words, he could almost (almost!) convince himself that she could continue just a short while longer — long enough perhaps…? No, he decides. That would be utterly self-serving, and while pleasurable in the short term, possibly detrimental in the long term.

Instead, his hand moves to her shoulder when she leans in to press lips to his chest, smoothing the skin of her arm and pulling her closer to his body. Rolling back to rest with face to the sky, his other arm moves around her, inviting her to snuggle against him, fingers burying themselves in the shaggy mane of her hair. "You are concerned because…" He hesitates, trying to find an appropriately delicate way to phrase his own question, so as not to embarrass her further. "Because I remained within you during my climax this time, versus how events went before?"

Nestled against him, she found the sensation of the breeze kissing her skin a startling contrast to the heat that had just concluded, sending her body into a head-to-toe shiver that refused to be contained. Slowly, he felt her head nod against him in agreement. Silence still remained between them for a few moments longer before she found her voice. "Though 'concerned' is not apt… because I'm not worried or fearful. Surprised, curious… yes. I did not expect it so I do not know how to accept the gift. So… I was wondering if this is how you prefer to couple and if so…"

She felt the fool for even bringing it up, and he could feel a bashful half shrug. "I approve. If it was a solitary occurance, then I wanted to let you know that… that… " She somehow finds the courage to lift her head to meet his eyes. "I approve."

He chuckles at her words, stroking her back to still her shivers, if possible. The thought passes through his mind that they would need to return to the bed soon, out of the bright light and into an environment more conducive to sleep. "Tis my preference to remain within my lover throughout the experience, and so your approval is appreciated," he answers her, lips coming to rest on her forehead. He pauses for three heartbeats before realizing more could be explained.

"I did not our first time because I was not prepared for lovemaking that eve," he continues. "There are several ways for me to ensure that I am not fertile, so as not to compromise my partners. After our first time together, when you expressed a desire to accompany me to Chaos, it was my belief and intention that we would become lovers, and so it behooved me to make proper preparations." A momentary pause, his hand still caressing her back. "So my intention is not to deny that final pleasure to either of us, unless there is some special reason for it. Is that agreeable to you?"

Eyes widen in wonder. "You can do that?" she blurted before burying her face once more in the crook of his neck. "I'm so sorry… my tongue has no leash," she murmurred, the muffled sound reaching his ears. The thought of such things opened the doors to endless possibilities… including one extremely self-serving one. Rising from her hiding place, Margot combed wild locks from her face, tucking them behind her ear. Delight radiated in her face, a second wind of adrenaline threatening to overtake her and her better judgement.

Nodding once more, she claimed his mouth eagerly, hungrily. "Yes. Yes. Yes," she utters through gasps of breath. Her renewed enthusiasm is unexpected, but not unwelcome. He turns to face her, returning her eager kisses, while she enthusiastically agreed to his words.

The exhilaration of his news passing for a moment, she paused in her affection, her body shifting and molding against him, "Then… I will no longer have to drink this awful tincture?" she asked, nearly vibrating with hope. "The Lord Physician forces it upon me at the command of the Queen. It is truly dreadful."

"I know not of what dreadful tincture you speak, my dear," he answers her last question while his fingers trace her waist and hips, traveling over rear and along slender thigh. "But my measures are sufficient." His touch summoned colonies of goose bumps to rise once more, a soft moan passed over her lips as eyes fluttered closed. She wanted to learn more of his methods, but his caress was a terrible distraction.

"After our night together and I met with my mother… she divined that we had not planted any seeds in my womb." She didn't need to go into the details, including physical examination, and so jumps to the important point. "In the end of it all, a tea of sorts was prescribed, supposedly with certain properties to keep a womb from letting seed take root. I take it daily with Desrianne looming over my shoulder to ensure that all has been consumed to the very last drop. It tastes like what I can only assume the gunk scraped off the bottom of sailing ships would taste like if it were used to make a tea. It spoils the mood and the appetite."

Pressing herself up with her hands framing his face and her hair cascading around them, blocking the sun's watchful gaze. "I'd prefer to leave my mood light and my… appetites voracious."

Kendall's smile at this is mischief incarnate dosed with a full measure of lust, and he pulls her against him as he rolls onto his back so that she found herself atop him with his excitement pressed between their bellies. Her hair falls in clouds around his head as they kiss again, hands tangling in the locks covering her back, delighting in the texture of hair between fingers and against her skin.

Peals of giggles give way to hungry moans as mouths collide. Still pressed against him, her legs part, straddling him, her legs holding her weight. One hand braced her, resting above his head, while the other slid along his side to his hip only to threaten to brush against his growing interest before returning to his hip and sliding along his side. Hardened peaks ghost against his chest as she moves in slow undulations; not quite touching him, but hovering above and letting the sensation taunt him.

"Margot…" he sighs between kisses as she begins to torment him. She was learning fast. Burning blue eyes search her face above his, hands cupping her backside. "We really should—" his breath catches as she moves lower, yet still preventing union.

"Practice temperance," he manages to finish with a crooked smile. She had no idea the irony of having him, of all people, suggesting temperance. It was as if Margot created a completely different character of him.

Lips tug at his smile, "As you said, this is perhaps the last time I will enjoy this fantasy…" she reminded him with a husky whisper laden with need, her lips seeking sensitive places along his neck to sample. "What good is temperance if you have not first experienced indulgence?"

Again, her body begins to dance atop him, the sensation of skin upon skin too decadent to ignore. Her mouth leaves his to find new and interesting places to kiss and sample, taste and nip; not unlike their first loving, only now, she is more at ease and more confident in sating her cravings for him. Her lips continued to travel his torso, parting for her tongue to swirl his nipple or to draw fanciful patterns along his skin. Her mind was branded with that intricate lace she had walked earlier; and parts of it revealed itself in the delicate arabesque of kisses and nips. Lower and lower her body slid, until his legs relaxed and passage was granted; the trail blazed across his flesh one taken before. Occasionally, her eyes would flicker to his face, gauging his pleasure before she returned to her lascivious objective.

That she enjoyed giving him pleasure won her full marks, no matter her inexperience or any awkwardness that might arise from it. The feel of her lips and skin against him brought small sighs and moans of pleasure, interspersed by a gasp or two as teeth bit gently. At first, bent legs kept her close as they caressed each other, sun and breeze burning away the softer essence of cinnamon and bringing her unique scent to his nostrils, mixed with the primal odors of sex and sweat. But then he relents, allowing her body passage to move her lips lower towards her prize.

As lips and then tongue trek closer, he hitches himself up on elbows to watch her, gaze spending equal time on her eyes and the shape of her lips. Her intent having become clear, he asks softly, "Would you like for me to pleasure you thus at the same time?"

A kiss to the tip of her destination is delivered; the scent of their loving pungent upon his skin. Lips part just enough to envelope the growing head, her tongue sliding around the tip languidly. Glancing up at him, her smile returned as she licked her lips. "No… I want you to …" she thought about it for a few moments as his manhood pressed nestled betwixt her breasts, "I want you to be so moved … so tempted … so distracted with mounting me that you claim me with that savage hunger unleashed."

He blinks as those words pass her lips, and though his expression does not change from its characteristic indulgent half-smile, there is a momentary sense of distance to his eyes - a guarded and measuring quality she had not seen in him for some time. The change is brief, merely a flicker, and then his smile widens a touch as he almost purrs his response. "I am certain such a thing could be arranged, Margot."

The change did not go unnoticed, though. She rose from him, kneeling back. "I'm sorry. I was just … being silly. Playful. Grandiose. I thought you would laugh at my boldness." Her expression, as did her playful nature, fell. It was clear that she did not like something in his expression. "Perhaps… I should go to bed now." With that and a frown, she rose, confusion plain in her eyes and moved to the bedroom.

He does not object as she withdraws and moves out of the sun into the cool shade of the inner chamber. He remains on the balcony, lying propped on his elbows on the comforter in the sun with head tilted to best catch the breeze.
Before she can move completely beyond hearing, however, he does offer some words as… explanation? Insight?

"I have never had the pleasure to meet someone who was, in truth, exactly as they presented themselves. Such is not a luxury in the Courts of Chaos, nor of Amber it would seem." His words are spoken slowly, with thought behind them, and though their content might seem unrelated, clearly something had tied them to the here and now for him.

She stopped. "What do you mean?" she asked, marching back to stand above him. Tears were forming in her eyes.

Lord Kendallarithan looks up at her from the makeshift bed of the comforter on a balcony, somehow cold and commanding in spite of his pose and state of undress. Seeing the hurt and confusion in her face, the tears in her eyes, he rolls to his side and rises with fluid quickness to stand before her.

"This is not a conversation we will be having right now," he says, his voice calm and final. Putting hand to her arm, he begins to steer her back towards the room. "You need rest still, and a massage was promised. After you have slept, Reason will have much greater interest in attending to our words."

"No." She balks against his guiding hand, refusing to move. Tears begin falling on her cheeks. "I don't know what I did that has changed you… but I was just playing. You yourself have asked me to be more explicit. I have never, ever, EVER been anything but completely forthright with you. And honest. AND true. If because I was … brazen, where earlier I was not…"

“I just… I was just trying to make you laugh…" She begins to sob, struggling to force the words out of a chest that felt crushed by stones. "Had I known you would not have been amused, I would not have said a word. On my own life, I will throw myself from this place if that's what it takes to prove my honor… I would not have done anything at all if I knew it would have upset you… "

Her words are wracked with regret, guilt and mortification. She tried so hard… always honest, always defending him to any who would listen. She didn't understand the nuances between cultures all the time, but how could things have turned so badly? Every time she thought she had things figured out with him, something happened, she screwed up, she failed. Bending over the rail, she wept into her hands while the open sea lifted a siren's call only she could hear, summoning her to a place of peace.

But before she can even consider putting truth to the promise of plunging to the sea, rather than leaving it a dramatic declaration, he takes her into his arms, lifting her as effortlessly now as he had twice earlier today. At first touch, she attempts to turn away, but only succeeds in stumbling against the banister and trapping herself against the stone.

He takes advantage of her stumble to gather her up swiftly and hold her tightly enough to hurt, leaving her no recourse but to be carried back to the room. She knew not of what offense she had committed, only that she had committed something and, at her folly, everything had gone to Hell. Now, she did not feel comfort in the arms that moved her into the darkness, only restraint. But though she attempts to squirm and fight, his strength and purpose are implacable as he bears her indoors.

"Rory!" he calls his servant with a single word, and the door opens within a heartbeat to reveal the stalwart presence. "Seline wine with c'athaa," the Chaos Lord orders as he carries the inconsolable princess to the bed. The servant nods and withdraws from the room to fetch the needed items, shutting the door and leaving the two once more in privacy.

Once they reach the bed again, Kendall sets her down as gently as her taut body will allow. But once free of his confining grasp, Margot scrambles to the other side of the bed as far away from him as she could. She snatches up a pillow and curls around it, hugging it to her chest and pointedly not looking at him, for fear she would only see her heartbreak again and again. A wild look fills her eyes as she stares at the foot of the bed, frantically searching her memory as to what she could have possibly done that would have been seen as dishonest, or faulty, or deceptive, or manipulative.

He allows her frenzied escape and leave her be for some heartbeats while he picks a blue robe up from the floor and dons it with unhurried motions. He then retrieves the robe she had used earlier, draping the fabric at the end of the bed. A knock heralds the return of the red-haired servant with a tray holding two tiny bottles and a glass. This is delivered to the table, which was still covered with the remains of their earlier meal. After a quick exchange of glances to confirm nothing else was required right then, Rory departs with a click of the door, leaving the lovers again alone.

The sobs had quieted, but her body was wrung tight with emotion. Tears continued to flow from her eyes, though they would crest her lower lashes with nary a blink in an eerie flood of emotion. Her hair hung loose and wild, obscuring any clear vision of her face. Kendall picks up the glass and walks around to the side of the bed nearer the princess. He moves slowly and with care, as though she was a wild thing that might start and run away at a sudden motion.

Once facing her, he crouches down beside the bed so he can look up into her face, but she closes her eyes to avoid meeting his gaze and hugs the pillow tighter, her jaw clenched. Body language that had earlier been so open and welcoming became a distant memory as she retreated to a world of distress and dismay that had no place for him or his comforts. Mentally, he cursed himself to the darkest well of the Abyss for being a dolt. But when he finally speaks, he controls his voice with masterful skill, murmuring his words to her as softly as a silk cloth soothing a feverish forehead.

"Margot, my sweet, I would like you to drink this, please. It will bring you calm and allow you to relax so that your traumas may be addressed."

Several heartbeats pass before she opens her eyes and looks at him, an emotional tempest whirling in those dark pools. His expression when she finally turns her gaze upon him is hard to categorize; neither as warm as she was accustomed to, nor now as cold and distant as it had been on the balcony. Instead it hovers somewhere between the two, with a conflict reflected in eyes that are clouded with uncertainty and befuddlement.

He is uncertain how to fix this, if it could be fixed, or if it should be fixed. What would it mean to fix this situation, and what, exactly, needed fixing? But though he was at a loss, he had to remain in control of himself in order to prevent further escalation. When in doubt, his upbringing came to the fore, and self control was an expectation even above breathing.

She wanted to trust him, to believe that he meant it when he called her my sweet. Her eyes flicker to the glass and a long, awkward pause ensues before she nods very slowly. Unfurling the arm closest to the glass from the pillow, Margot reaches to grasp it with a trembling, shaky hand. And with an encouraging little smile, he steadies her hand as she takes the first sip.

The smile helped, though… she was not certain why. She thought should be protecting herself or … or … she wasn't even sure what she should be doing. But her tongue soon discovers a deeply satisfying blend of flavors in the elixir he offered. The drink was warmth and softness and peace, perfectly sweet with a soothing aroma that rose to her nostrils and filled her with serenity.

Her eyes close as the wine flows past her lips. It's impossible to not gulp the contents, though she fought the impulse with what little willpower she had left. Quickly, after a few breaths interspersed between sips, the glass empties and by the time the last drop passed her lips, the calming effects of the concoction had begun to reveal itself in her face. Weariness circled her eyes; any exhaustion she had already suffered from was only elevated by the emotional gamut just endured.

Margot stretched to replace the glass back, teetering on the edge of the bed, but Kendall plucks the glass from her hand as she reaches to put it on the nearby bedside table. He steadies her with his other hand so that she would not tumble to the floor. Calm brought weakness born of weariness, and so it was a simple matter for him to press her back into the bed against the sheets.

He does not fuss about her wish to curl into a ball rather than recline on her back; it's enough that she can be covered and composed for sleep. He lays sheet and light blanket over her, keeping his motions slow, restrained, and controlled. Tucking it about her body, he encloses her comfortingly in soothing warmth.

"Sleep, Margot," he directs her, voice still soft and calming. "We shall speak when you are more rested, and see what may be resolved of the misunderstanding between us."

"No…" she protests, though she lacked the energy or strength even to push away the light blanket. "I don't want to sleep…" Her words are laden with her despair, but she has to stifle a yawn.

"I want to make it right… I… I have to. I'm sorry… I'm sorry… I'm sorry." Her head lolls to the side as she tried to focus on his form, and she whimpers, blinking owlishly at him. "Don't… Don't leave me… Please… I just… ravishing…" She whispers, the sound between a sob and a mew. "I don't want… alone."

"You will not be alone," he answers, sitting on the bed next to her and smoothing her hair back from her brow. Lifting one of her hands, he kisses the fingertips. "Be still, my sweet. All will be explained… in time."

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