Back before that bastion-fucked magician’s plague, I’d have never thought I’d be where I am now. Even when I was stuck in the Basquiat with Royston and his child-bride and that damned kid kept making jokes about the sickness, I didn’t like him.

I certainly would never have imagined I’d like the way he tended to take even a grunt as conversation, the way he bounced and vibrated when he got excited, his sighs, his delicate shivers. Recently I’ve found myself doing things just to hear him sigh in irritation, and wearing the ugliest damned clothes I could get my hands on just to see him shiver. And I sure as hell would never have believed it, even if I’d gone back in time and told myself, that I’d fucking let Caius fucking Greylace snuggle to my side for warmth in the middle of the damn winter. Well, okay, late fall, but that doesn’t matter, does it?

We were walking to his ‘surprise’ and there he was, pretty as you please, freezing his ass off in that thin-ass silk thing from Ke-Han, so he snuggles in to my side. Only, I don’t really feel like pushing him off. But the way he was shivering, I had no choice. Hated it, though, the little whimper he made and the way he shivered so violently when I pulled my arm out of his grip. I could see he was trying not to pout as he stood there shaking, telling me he wasn’t cold. I don’t know if it was gallantry or just a ploy to get my arm back, and I really didn’t—and still don’t—give a flying fuck. I threw my jacket around him, keeping my arm around his shoulders too keep him warmer. He let out one of those beautiful sighs—of relief or happiness or something—and snuggled in, sliding his thin arm around my waist. I shivered, thinking that I could get used to this, his arm around my waist, those little sighs, the way his body fit just right under my arm and pressed against my side when he suddenly pulled away. He had one of those looks, like when he’s fussing about my temper. Oh fuck, I thought, What’d I do this time?

“You are cold!”  he chastised.

I grabbed him back to my side, holding the coat on him, keeping him from throwing it off to give back to me.”No. Not cold.”  Just incredibly aroused, but I wasn’t telling him that. It’d just make his head bigger. Though, that may not be such a bad thing, depending on the head. “We there yet?” I asked, chuckling when he told me my voice sounded funny.

When we finally got to his ‘surprise’—which was a bastion-be-damned cabin that he was gonna live in ‘to give me space.’ Like hell that was gonna happen—we ended up having a bit of an argument. The result? I’m moving. He’s coming with me. We sealed that deal with a kiss—about damn time. I didn’t realize I’d been waiting so long.

I would have never in all my years imagine I’d have a very naked Caius Greylace curled against my body with his head on my naked chest and his leg thrown over mine and looking so fucking gorgeous in the moonlight that I just gotta kiss him. And, not being a man to be completely unreasonable, I did. He sighed—that little cross-dressing shit-stirrer, he was awake the entire time!—and raised up a bit to see me. I loved the little content smile on his face at that moment. He seemed so happy to be practically laying on me. I know I sure as hell was happy with the moment. But it didn’t last long.

“So?” he asked, looking for all the world like a lost child, all of a sudden.

“What?” I grunted, irritated with the change of mood.

“Are we friends, or—“

“Caius, if we were friends, I wouldn’t have just fucked your damn brains out.” I said. Suddenly, he was shifting, getting up. What  the hell had I said this time? I grabbed his wrist, determined not to let him go. “Why’re you upset?” I asked in a gentler tone. It wasn’t his fault I was hard as all hell—well, actually, it was, him being all naked and stuff, but that’s beside the point—so I really shouldn’t take it out on him. He pulled at me, trying to make me let go. I just pulled him closer, grabbing his face. “Caius, what’d I say?” I asked, leaning my forehead against his. “You know me. I don’t get the emotional shit. You’re gonna have to tell me, okay?”

“You said we weren’t friends—“

I grunted, cutting him off. “No. We aint. I’d say—“

He pulled suddenly, angry with me for something again. I grabbed him around the waist, pulling him into my lap, holding tightly with one arm while my other hand went to his face, forcing him to look at me. “Why don’t you fucking let me finish!” I growled. He settled down, watching me warily. “I was saying that I don’t think that we’re just friends anymo—“ another jerk, bastion damn it all. I flipped him over using my body to pin him to the bed. “I don’t do ‘friends with benefits,’ Caius, so I guess—hold still damn it and let me finish!” He was still bucking and jerking around, trying to get loose. I kissed him--hell if I know why. He resisted a bit, then moaned as I slid my tongue along his lip. He bucked again, but this time I didn’t think he was trying to get away. Seemed more like he was trying to get closer. He moaned again, and I let his hands go and raised up, breaking the kiss.

“Oh,” he breathed, “I get it.” Ah, there it is, I thought as that content smile slipped back onto his face, replacing the frightening angry and hurt look from before. “Alcibiades, my dear, you could have just told me you wanted us to be lovers.”

“What the hell do you think I was trying to tell you? You jumping all over the damn place didn’t make it easy for me to make my point.”

“Oh,” was all he said as he grabbed me around the waist, pulling me down on top of him.

I just kissed him again, bucking a bit myself. He seemed to like the idea and opened his legs and mouth, granting me access on both fronts.

Another battle won for General fucking Alcibiades of the fucking Glendarrow.

Okay, a bit of language, you know Al..

Ah, yes, I have somehow managed to again annoy Alcibiades. The poor dear really needs to learn to control that temper of his, or he’ll end up having a heart attack, which would be bad for both of us.

And I think I know just the way to cheer him up.

Alcibiades ran into the room, eyes wild and face blood red—perfect color for him, that, though it clashes terribly with his clothes. My concern about his heart increases, I mean, if his heart was to explode, I would be terribly sad, not to mention dear Yana, and I tell him so.

“Why the hell,” he asks, calming a bit at the mention of poor, dear Yana, “would you be sad? You’re the one who—“

“Oh?” I cut him off, “Because you’re my best friend, that’s why.” I left out what else he meant to me, knowing it would only anger him more. “But, my dear, I want to show you something.” I clamp onto his arm, tugging him out the door to my secret place, flattered that he didn’t try to shake me off as he used to in Xi’an.

“You gonna answer my question?” he asks.

I snuggle closer—pretty as it is, this thin silk is not good for autumn in the country—and say “Alcibiades, my dear, I already answered it. I said I’d be sad because you’re my best friend, and—“

“No,” he interrupts, “I got that. I asked a different one.”


“Yeah, where the hell’re we goin’?”

“You’ll see.” I smile, look up at him, and snuggle a bit closer, trying to hide a shiver.

“Cold?” he asked, inevitably pulling his arm out of my grasp and stealing all the warmth.

I suppress another shiver and try not to pout, not wanting to anger him. “No, I’m fine”

“You can’t be. That silk is thinner than Hapenny cloth! Hold on.” He pulled his off soldier’s jacket, wrapping it around me and pulling me to his side. “There, better?”

I sigh contentedly. “Yes, much, thank you. But won’t you get cold?”

“I’m not the one wearing silk in the bastion-be-damned winter.”

“It’s still fall, my dear. And we’re almost there.” I sigh again, content in the warmth, and utterly thrilled that he was holding me for a change. I snuggle yet closer, though heat isn’t what makes me do it. There’s plenty of heat now: heat from the jacket, heat from his arm and body, and heat pooling deep in my gut. As I slip my arm through the sleeve of the coat and around his waist, I feel him shiver violently. “You are cold!” I cry indignantly. Touched as I am that he gave me his coat, I was not going to let him freeze in the cold autumn air, but when I try to shrug off his arm and jacket, he only pulls me closer, his other arm crossing over us to hold the coat on me.

“No,” he said, “not cold. We there yet?”

His voice sounded funny, and I told him so. He just chuckled—rare sound, that. “Yes, dear, it’s in the cabin up ahead. I’m sure you’ll like it.”

“If it’s worth getting your new shoes dirty, I’m sure I’ll like it”

I smile, thinking this is the friendliest he’s ever been, though he had been notably friendlier after he nearly tore the castle in Xi’an down. I wonder what Lord Temur said to him?

“Cute,” he says, “the cabin, I mean. Never knew it was here”

“I built it myself, or rather, had it built,” I say as I open the door—quite a challenge, since Alcibiades showed no signs of letting me go for a moment. I finally broke away from him. Sweeping my arms out elegantly, I say “Your room at Yana’s is your own.” I don’t much like the idea of leaving my sweet Alcibiades, but I try to hide it. “If you want, I’ll stay here.” I’m trying to present it like it’s a great idea. The one thing Alcibiades wanted from me more than anything was space, time away from my craziness. I really was trying, I was, but I still had to turn away to compose myself, so I walked to the window.

Alcibiades grunted, and then grunted again. Suddenly, his hand was on my shoulder and he was growling “Turn the fuck around, Caius.” I barely had time to paste a falsely excited grin on my face before he jerked me around, grabbing my other shoulder. He stared at me a moment, sadness and disgust and something else written on his face and in his eyes. “No,” he said, shaking his head violently and shaking me gently to punctuate his point. “If anyone leaves Yana’s, it’s me.”

“Alcibiades, my dear,” I said, raising my hand to touch his face. I hadn’t meant to hurt him. “I’m the stranger here. Dear Yana would be horrified if you leave. I—“

“She likes you too much.”

“You’re like a son to her”

“She worries about me too much, you’d—“

“I am not letting you leave her!” I yelled. “I just can’t let you.”

“You can and you will, Caius. It’s me that’s gotta go. It’s not far away—“

“But what about her cooking? It’s wonderful! Wouldn’t you miss—“

Alcibiades silenced me with a fingertip. “There’s a fair deal more privacy out here, too. She won’t be offended if I leave, but you’re a guest. She’d be offended if you left.”


“And you’re my guest, so I don’t suppose she’d mind as much if you follow me.”

Had he always been holding me so close? I can see each eyelash, the tears in his eyes. Was I wrong? Did he not want me to go, to give him space? And what did he mean by ‘follow’?


When did his hand get on my hip? And the other, why was it cradling my face?

“Caius, please, please listen to me. If anyone moves, it has to be me. You can come with me if you want—I don’t suppose there’d be any stopping you—but it has to be me.”

“I’m sorry. I was trying to give you space. I thought—“

Alcibiades smiled softly. “Caius,” he breathed. It was such a beautiful sound and I wanted to make him do it again, but at the moment he was speaking. “If you wanted to give me space, Caius, you would have never read that letter,” he said, running his thumb along my bottom lip.

I was wrong, so wrong. He wanted me to go—with him, some place very private.

He bent down and caught my lower lip between his teeth. I sighed, then groaned, as he toyed with it, licking and nipping, then, when I finally decided enough was enough, I grabbed him and kissed him full on.

He tasted really nice. He slid his tongue against mine in an imitation of what I really wanted our bodies to be doing. The way things were going, it would be soon that I got my wish.

He tasted really good, and I told him so. He told me to kindly shut the fuck up.

August 2013

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