September 30, 2013

In Which Dania Spends a Day Among Dreamers

February 28, 1183

Not for the first time since he'd joined the navy, Adwyn had made port in Dania's village. And, not for the first time since he'd joined the navy, she'd scarcely opened the door for him when he'd swooped in with a kiss--and a good one, at that, firm and wet and with a dynamic tongue, but not lacking in tenderness. And every time before, given the former pirate's excellent sense of timing, had resulted in him fiddling with her laces as she'd undone his belt, bare backs hitting the floorboards in turn as they switched positions mid-coitus, their love-making reaching climax just in time for them to dress before one of her siblings or children returned.

Today, though...

"Adwyn!" Dania panted as her lover's grasp broke, embarrassed but not failing to smile entirely. "We can't right now."

"Oh?" Adwyn wiped a few beads of sweat from his brow. He must have had a view of the space behind her, but somehow he didn't seem to see. "Did the pub switch your sister to the later shift?"

"No."

"What about your brother? Has the apothecary finally had enough of having him coming into work every day in that ridiculous purple doublet?"

Dania laughed. Oh, her poor, stylish mother, having to look down from heaven and watch her son traipse around in that monstrosity of a garment! Then again, knowing Gregor, perhaps it was just a blessing that he didn't go about stark naked. "Somehow, no."

"And the children? Last I recall, Stephen runs deliveries for the bakery while Maura takes a lunch to her uncle? And while I'm sure Elene has grown since I've last seen her, I don't think she's quite outgrown her afternoon nap, am I right?"

"Yes, Stephen and Maura are out, and Elene is asleep." Rolling her eyes, she gestured behind her, only to watch him blink at the sight of a perfectly obvious person seated in the chair by the window. How had he missed him? Well, good to know that after a marriage, three kids and a widowing, she still had it. "I don't believe you've met my other brother?"

"Er... no. No, I haven't." Adwyn smirked himself back to composure, with mixed results. "Good day, sir. Captain Ladell's what they call me, but I'll let you get away with Adwyn."

"And they call me Fred." Actually, most didn't. But there was no need for Adwyn to know that. "You can call me Fred."

"I hope you can remember that," Dania teased as she escorted her fellow to the couch. Now that she thought about it, she wasn't sure if she recalled the last time he'd sat there with his pants on. "So, how are the high seas nowadays? I take it the protection bestowed upon you by King Moron hasn't been revoked by King Arse-Rag just yet?" She threw in a wink Fred's way, if only because he got a little wistful every time Queen Deserves-Better-Than-That-Arse-Rag came up.

"If that happens, it will be because he axes the navy entirely. He's not nearly as interested as his father was, but as long as the fleet still exists, it continues to benefit me." In terms of career, and no doubt as a cover-up for a few little 'hobbies' on the side. Adwyn reclined into a slouch with his usual brand of regal laziness. "Right now, I suspect he's thoroughly occupied with his new little son."

"Son?" Fred's brows sloped and his mouth fell open, leaving a mingled picture of alarm and worry and maybe a little relief. Dania had heard that the king and queen had only two daughters, rather spaced apart in age--and she'd also heard that one of the first things Ietrin had done after being crowned was to send his stepmother and half-siblings back to Dovia. He would have been in need of a son, and if he was like most men, he believed his penis infallible. "Is J--the queen all right?"

"So far as I'm aware. Probably someone would have mentioned if she died."

"Is she well?"

Adwyn shrugged. Dania sighed. If the news was a new prince, she doubted many gossipers had bothered to ask after the queen. "Sorry, little brother. Maybe no news is good news?"

"I hope you're right." But if she knew Fred, that wasn't enough for him to believe it.

"You seem to have quite an interest in the Queen of Naroni," Adwyn mused, prompting a visible swallow in Fred's throat. "Are you a friend of hers?"

"No. I just... find myself invested in her story." Fred laid a fingertip to the chair's arm and ran it along the grain. Dania followed its movement with her eye. Invested in her story. Tell me about it, brother. "A young girl, forced to marry a prince who isn't known for being pleasant, takes eleven long years to bear him the desired heir...

"And all the while, he never once considers that it might not be her who has the problem."

Adwyn frowned, likely unconvinced. It was Fred's luck, really--his most high-profile job to date, and he'd made the fatal mistake of forming a connection. Dania grimaced. She had to help him out. "He's done this before. He tends to take what he knows of notable figures and fill in the blanks in the most tragic way imaginable."

"I do recall you saying he was an artist--not unlike yourself." Adwyn took her by the shoulder and pulled her a little nearer. Now she could relax. If he'd gone back to teasing her--to teasing Fred like he teased her other siblings--then he'd probably lost interest. Hopefully. "The world may not sleep so much these days, but it's a lucky thing we still have dreamers, isn't it?"

NEXT CHAPTER:

7 comments:

Van said...

Thanks again to Morgaine for letting me use her Sims!

(Also, for those of you tired of the baby talk, next post will be the last in which Naroni's new little "prince" is a focus... at least, until there are developments on that front. ;) )

Mimus said...

I didn't recognize Fred at first.
Out of sight, out of mind, I guess. ^^'

Is that teenaged Dea in the preview picture? If so, she seems to have grown up pretty. ^^

Van said...

I think he was wearing his hair tied back the last time we saw him too. Either that or a hood.

Yes, that is Dea. :)

morgaine2005 said...

Dea is a TEEN already? Get out!

And aww, Fred still carries a bit of a torch. Well, I'm glad somebody in the story is worried about Jeda. Let's hope that, if things go really bad, he hears about it in enough time to do some good ... *innocent whistle*

Dania and Adwyn were awesome, too! Dania must really still have it to keep Adwyn so busy he doesn't even notice Fred sitting there (presumably awkwardly wishing he wasn't). You'd think a pirate would be a bit more observant, but Dania must really be something.

Either that or Adwyn isn't the best of pirates ...

(And I loved hearing about Dania's sibs and kids, too! :D)

Lastly, Dania's nicknames for the various kings of Naroni: Perfect. Absolutely perfect. ;)

Van said...

Yep! Dea turns ten on March 3, which happens to be the date of the next post. I age my kids up to teens a little too early, probably--it really messes with the stretches; I imagined the next post would be mostly standing, but the height difference between Dea and Uncle Sparron is such that it was impractical, and Sparron's not even that tall--but I find it easier to use short teens than lanky kids in those pre-teen years.

Jeda made an impression on Fred that he wasn't expecting. She's going to be on his mind for a while yet. If things do go downhill (er, even moreso), and he hears about it... well, he may be putting his professional skills to personal use.

Adwyn is a decent pirate because Dania doesn't sail with him. ;) I suspect that neither of them are under the impression that the relationship is serious, but there may be more feelings going on there than either of them realize.

I figured you'd appreciate that. ;) Though I had to go with pretty general excuses for the kids (at this point, Stephen just turned seven, Maura is five, and Elene is three). Given the Maude connection, I suspect Maura and Uncle Gregor get along very well.

Penelope said...

Wow, Fred seems really unconcerned that his sister is sleeping with a scoundrel. O_o But I suppose that he has other things on his mind. Does he often murder people for pay?

Hey! I know that hair! *glomp* And now that I look at it, I'm not sure I like the highlight placements. I might re-do that one and send you the results. :S

I think Fred needs to make some serious changes to his lifestyle before I can back him running away with Mrs. Arse-Rag (and her children, of course). As things stand, Jeda deserves better than Ietrin, but she deserves better than Fred too.

Van said...

Fred might have had some issues with it at some point, but Dania wouldn't have had any problems setting him straight. He might still silently disapprove, but he knows better than to voice that opinion.

Fred has been a hired assassin since his teen years by now. And yes, even if Ietrin died tomorrow and even if Jeda loves Fred with the passion of a thousand suns or whatever, I don't think she'd be willing to be with him while he's still a contract killer. After all the drama with Ietrin, she'd want a nice, stable guy with a nice, non-shady job and a permanent address, preferably in her father's territory.

I think the hair looks great! :) But if you're not satisfied with it, that's ultimately your call.