“Still…it seems like something that should have been mentioned.”
“Why? Does it really matter?”
“Theo’s married! Gilby’s married! Seems like something that would come up!”
“Is Quarian married? What about that randy little McDewpipe? Or Drelmadath? Or Pavel? Do you know if any of them are married? Damn, Toot-Toot…I don’t even know if YOU are married. It wasn’t important. If it was, it would have come up.”
“It’s important!” He didn’t like it, but he felt himself pouting. He felt…almost betrayed. But she made good points. And he could not decide if he should feel betrayed or not.
“OK…I am not a virgin. I was married once. I liked sleeping with him. A lot. He liked it less and less each time. The more I enjoyed it, the less it appealed to him. About four months into the marriage, he was tired and I wanted him to feel good, so, instead of making him mount me, I mounted him. And it was…glorious. Or so I thought. He accused me of pissing on him. He got…well…pissy…after that. We never had sex again. It seemed as if each day after that he would look at me with a little bit more disgust than the day before. We were married just after the new year. Mid-summer he went on a diplomatic mission for Garb with the Scotti. Late summer, his body, minus his head, was returned to us and we were told that they were not interested in the diplomacy we had to offer. He got himself killed because he couldn’t stand being with me. But I still was very much in love with him. Nobody has ever made me feel better. Nobody has ever made me feel worse. That winter I slaked my grief stalking the ruling members of the Scotti. If my king knew about the number of heads I harvested that winter he would have had to had me hanged. It was a very cold winter. And I have not seriously had the drive to entertain my…body…since then.
“So…that summer I got married. Learned I was a sexual freak. Lost the love of my life because he could no longer stand the sight of me. Abandoned my liege lord. Stalked and assassinated most of the ruling Scotti clan, ate their eyes and emasculated the males and pulled out the Well of Áine and the Home of Heroes from the women and blackmailed the Queen of the Scotti by hiding the trophies in her chambers and then leaving a slight blood trail to her door one night, returned to the king during the snows of early spring, got accused of murdering one of King Garb’s heroes and got sent to Gaul and Keltiberia to see if I could help forge relationships or at least introductions with the tribes there…it was… a useful alternative to simple banishment while the King had some of his trusted sidemen investigate the murder. At least he understood I didn’t kill one of his heroes in the dark of the night.”
He listened to the fire continue to crackle and pop as he watched her face, her eye back and forth to his face and then to her hands folded in her lap. And then he realized neither of them were talking. It was comfortable for a bit…until it was not.
“So…you love me just as a friend. And would never consider me as a mate because you don’t want to get pregnant. Right?”
She looked pensively at…his chest? Belly? Maybe his lap.
“Hellooo?” He reached over and knocked lightly on her head after it became obvious she was not immediately answering. “Is anybody home? That’s not really that hard a question…”
She sighed. He thought she really needed to quit doing that. It always lead to a more complex answer than he was expecting.
She put her palm back on the middle of his chest and pushed slightly. “Lay back down.” He let himself be gently pushed back to the floor. “The question…is really not as simple as it sounds…” She snaked back down herself, once again spooning against his side, her head resting on his shoulder, her hand taking its place on top of his heart, her thigh sliding over his and worming up towards his crotch. He was concerned enough about where she was going with her answer that he did not even physically react to leg sliding up against his. “Or…at least the answer is a lot more involved than it might appear on the surface.”
And then she rested for a moment. Just the sounds of the fire, their breathing, and snoring that could be heard through the door to the Tailor’s bedroom. He was about to ask her if she was going to answer the question when she began again. “Lovers.” A deep breath again…though not exactly a sigh. “OK. Let’s talk about that.
“Nothing is going to happen…not because we are ‘just friends,’ either.” There was a long pause. Alarms were starting to go off in his head. Something in her tone said ‘danger, danger.’ “But…because…well…” She seemed to be struggling with her words. Maybe she really did not like guys. Maybe she liked Gilbys. Or maybe she…wanted Theodosius. Oh, gawd, she was smitten with Galazarn! He was going to lose out to a dwarf! Just get to it! “Because…you are not…well… human.” He felt an elephant land on his chest. His heart could be breaking. This went to the core.
“I am have a hard time just wrapping my head around that,” she said softly.
“Just stop! Stop right there.”
“No. I don’t think I can now. We opened this chest…we got to see what’s inside it.”
“No we don’t.” Gods…this hurt! “Just stop.”
She did not stop. “Where I come from…there are humans. And then there are…’the others’.” Toot-Toot felt the falling… slow down. “In the islands, the others are various colors of fey. And they do not have humanity’s best interest at heart. We are…just toy to them. And while there are often great rewards for sexual dalliances with them, they usually come at a high price. And beyond the knockers, the spriggans, the piskies, the leprechauns, the brownies, the hobgoblins, the selkies, the Annwn and the others is the Seely Court. Any of which could unintentionally break a mortal without a conscious thought.”
“I get that,” he mumbled. Maybe she was part of that Seely Court.
“I’m not sure you do. But I will come back to that. Once you get through all those possibilities…none of them good for your long time emotional or mental health…unless…maybe…you’re a druid, you get the kelpies, empusa, the fuatha [player note: pronounced FOO-ah] and the Unseely Court. And they will break a mortal’s mind, body and soul just to watch the layers get slowly flayed off to see if they can either utterly destroy you…and all you hold dear…and/or turn you into a monster. Then there are the siḋe [pronounced shee, and sometimes spelled sid, side, sithe, sith…and sometimes for convenience, shee or she] and the drow. The siḋe are the white ones. The drow are the black ones. And while they can use glamour…or what you call magic…to appear as humans, they cannot appear as each other. A siḋe or a drow, either one, could take on MY appearance. And a drow could take on your appearance. But a siḋe could never take on YOUR appearance…because you are too black. Your purple is too dark. A drow could never take on Drelmadath’s appearance because she is too white. Anyway, while the siḋe are sometimes thought of as ‘good,’ they are not good. They just look good compared to the absolute and unwavering evil of the drow. And both, while having incredibly vulnerable weaknesses, are just a few rungs under being actual gods. If not for their vulnerability to silver and iron, and us humans slathering ourselves in both, they would have enslaved the entirety of humanity to use as their toys. As it is, they often use us as proxies for their own machinations. Never, never, ever make a deal with either. They are much more subtle than Tiamat. And…they make deals…not contracts. So getting out of a ‘deal’ is much more difficult than getting out of a ‘contract.’ And…there is always a catch. Ask me about my fey gift sometime…and the cost that comes with it…and it wasn’t my deal. It was an ancestor from generations ago.
“Anyway, any of the ‘above’ would gladly trick you into loving them. And most would destroy you…usually without killing you…though the fuatha and Unseely Court are more likely to kill you and eat you. They are not…exactly mortal. They are mortal enough that they can be killed…at least that is what the druids and the bards tell us…but they don’t ever just die of old age or disease or natural causes. They…don’t die…they have to be slain. If that makes sense. And, because they are not mortals, at least not in the common use of the term, they don’t have a full concept of human emotions. Their love is different than ours. They would probably say more pure. But either way, they don’t really understand love the way we do. You love your mother, you love your sister, you love me, you love your daughter, you love your wife, you love your bitch…but you love them all a little differently. And…they all love you back. But…the way your bitch loves you back is so different than the way the humans…or glavians…love you back. It’s a form of love. But it is foreign…no…it is alien…compared to the others. It’s like smelling the color green, or hearing magnetic north. You can explain it. You can compare it. But you can’t really know what your bitch’s love for you is truly like for her. In the same way, the ‘others’ don’t understand human love, especially romantic love. They find it curious. And amusing. And something to be experimented with like a rat in Yamix’s lab. And they don’t always understand when they are breaking you. So…relationships with non-humans is safest as companions…friends…or better yet…associates.
“But, they are not the only ones available. There are the fomar, if you can stand having an icicle thrust in and out of your vagina, the firbolg [fur-volg] if you can stand the filth, and in the land of the Northmen, there are dvergar…you would call them dwarfs, but they look much more like a cross between what you call gnomes and…I don’t know…a scarecrow. And the alfar…roughly corresponding to your elves…the liosalfer…or “light” elves and the dockalfar, or “dark” elves. Though light and dark tend to be more of a physical rather than a metaphysical application, whereas on the islands, light and dark are much more akin to…not-evil and evil. The alfar vary quite a bit in appearance…from quite attractive…to butt ugly. And then there are the trolls, ogres and giants. Trolls are all over the place. It’s almost a catch all for anything that is not human, and isn’t otherwise defined as something else. So they range anywhere from as tiny as your hand to as tall as trees. Ogres tend to be built like humans, incredibly stupid, and range anywhere from about a man and a quarter in height to twice a man’s height…and from one to four heads…though usually just one…or two, and two to six arms…though usually just two, and one or two legs…almost always two. The difference between these others and the others where I come from is that these are all mortal. Some are long lived, but all are mortal and can die of old age, disease or a sword through the heart. And most are not usually especially vulnerable to one ban or another, though there are exceptions. Successful cross-breeding conception is rare. And if successful, pregnancy is often fatal…because the size of the conceived is not always in step with the size of the conceivers. So, a troll that stands only half a man’s height and a human woman conceive, the off spring may grow to be a man and a half in height. A deal, but not necessarily a huge deal if that happens after birth. But, during gestation, if it grows to even be as big as the father…that will usually be fatal to the mother.
“So…where I come from…and where I have spent most of my life, physical relationships between races…is…perilous. Here…it seems to be much more common…and much more successful. YOU are proof of that. Maybe it’s because of the races involved. Maybe it’s just the spirit of this world. I don’t know. But what seems like a normal and acceptable to you …is just…wrong to me.
“This is going to sound incredibly offensive…try not to take it that way…please! But sex with a glavian…or a dwarf or elf or whatever…is almost like the idea of sex with a dog or a wolf. I like wolves. I have a lupine spirit. But I’m not mating with one. And the idea of sex with you…is kind of like the idea of having sex with a werewolf in wolfman form. On one level, incredibly exciting and forbidden. On another level, absolutely terrifying.
“So…the idea of being lovers or mates…” She paused. Then sighed. “I don’t know. If I think about it, and am honest, the connection…the contact…the sharing…it has a certain appeal. But…I have to stop and actually think about it. Otherwise …the concept just doesn’t exist. Kind of like flying. I don’t wake up in the morning and think, “I’m going to take a quick flight around the woods today,” or, “I think I will just fly over there and grab some apples.” That’s just not a normal part of my thought process. But there are times that I think that them there apples would sure be easier to pick if I could fly. Or I daydream about gliding over the forest and looking down at all the gods’ creatures. So…on occasion…I have fantasized about entertaining your purple flute. Really, I have. And…yes…it is exciting. But the thought of actually consummating that idea…it ranges from fear to terror to…well, even worse reactions…which bother me. So I just don’t think about it much. I just enjoy you, for the most part, for who you are, even when you piss me off. And I enjoy the eye candy when it is available and the mood hits me. And mostly…I just try to appreciate the person that you are, and as much as I can, forget about race.”
She smoothed her hand over his chest. Both nipples rose up after her palm slid across them. She…snuggled in closer to him, her head, hips and thigh wiggling over him as she suckered up closer to him. And then she took a deep breath through just her nose. He realized it was not a breath of air so much as she was taking in his scent. Then, as she slowly exhaled, she whispered, “this is nice…really…really nice.” And it was too, even though she gave him much to think about. And not all of it good. And made him wonder how well he really knew her. He shifted his left arm so that it wrapped around her back until he could get his hand to rest on her shoulder. He tried to think about what she had said. He really did. But she was asleep in moments. And as much as he struggled to stay awake and contemplate, she was dragging him down into slumber with her. And he did not want to break contact with her. Because she was right. It was nice. And it felt…close. And intimate. And non-sexual. And special. And dangerous. And…and…
She is still there. The fire is cold. He tried to remember what he had been thinking before he drifted off. But all he could think about at the moment was he really needed to pee. And it really felt good having her half on top of him. And he was going to have to break contact if he was not going to wet himself right on the Tailor’s floor. Having her against him was really nice. The Tailor’s floor could be cleaned later. Siobhan would probably kick him in the balls if he pissed on her knee. Damn…he was rock hard too. How come women never have to pee first thing in the morning. And are never hard. The creator was probably a damned woman.