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Messages - Nora Dupuis

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1
Rosnay Island / Re: The restless wife
« on: February 08, 2020, 08:56:15 AM »

"But I want to." She insisted, more truth in her words than Emile's. He fell so easily to the pressure of her fingers. Body sinking into the bed and rising up to ask for more. Nora was happy to indulge him. Fingers looking for all the places where there was tension or hardness that didn't match the rest of his body. Little knots of strain.

Occasionally she glanced up from the places her fingers found to cast shy smiles at his watching eyes. Felt the heat of her blush grow even hotter whenever she remembered he was watching as well as listening. But it wasn't in her not to share. She didn't want to keep secrets from Emile. The very idea never crossed her mind. Nora couldn't give him everything he wanted, but she was more than happy to give what she could. And Emile took it all without snatching or scoffing.

Nora blinked at him. Eyes meeting over his sun stained shoulder. He agreed, that she had been right. Who, she wondered, until he answered. Half of her mouth lifted into a smile, followed by her shoulders. "Aren't we all?" She asked with a philosophical naiveté. Nora couldn't imagine any of them being different than they were. Under her, Emile wiggled. Half turning to face her so that Nora had to give up his shoulders for his lower back.

Which he took from her as well, rolling beneath her until she was straddling his stomach. Shell rough hands lifting her away from his spear. Nora sat across his navel and smoothed his hair since he'd taken the muscled of his back from her. Pella and her anger forgotten for a time. What did it matter if she said yes or no? Emile was with Nora then. The two of them, caught in an awkward dance. Worries stroked away by words like knots being worked out by fingers.

"Not at all?" She'd never heard of such a thing. Chin pressing down toward her heart, Nora hunched over him. It was dizzying to sit about him in such a way. Like she was suddenly bigger than Emile was. Hands settling on his upper arms, Nora listened. Toes curling in pleasure against his legs. He was much better with his words than she was. Quick to chase away all the shame she'd felt for what she couldn't help. The smallness her mother's look had made her feel.

Nora's hands swept up to his shoulders. Squeezing the roundness that spilled out of the curve of her palm. "I love you too." She imparted with a cheeky grin, happiness burbling upward in her. And she did. He'd saved her when she was in danger, and then found her when she'd been lost. Sliding forward, she propped her elbows on the mattress and smacked a kiss against his cheek. He was her absolutely favorite person ever.

"Strange things to compare your spear to, Emile." Nora laughed. She had heard men speak of their spears before. Comparing them to trees, or stones, but never injuries. Chuckling, she collapsed against him. He loved her. Just the way she was. "I promise to say when you're touching too much," she reassured him. So far it hadn't been a bother, except the worry that her lack of response would drive him away all together.

Hopefully Pella would let go of her anger soon so that Emile didn't have to go wholly without. "Did you find anything interesting today?" She asked, nuzzling in close and relaxing into him like he was the mattress itself.


2
Rosnay Island / Re: Domesticity
« on: February 08, 2020, 08:22:22 AM »

Nora chewed her lip thoughtfully. Defense was not something she had much worried about before. Life had been peaceful, the worst trouble the sort that hunted fat seals; but even those had been a rare fright, the channel had not invited the type of predators that stalked open waters. Too narrow in some places for their big bodies. Which was why she had faired so poorly against the pod and required saving from Emile.

"Is there a lot of need for defense?" Nora asked, adding another worry to her growing list of concerns. Her shoulders pulled forward, elbows sliding along stomach and thigh as she withdrew from an invisible threat, crushing a bit of seaweed in her fingers until they were fragrant and sticky. Aramis did not seem afraid. Defense spoken the same way he'd said every other word. With very little inflection, Nora realized. It was like he hadn't a care in the world. And maybe a person didn't when they wore a Green.

She used a napkin from the stack someone had left in the middle of the table to clean her fingers. And back of her hand where she had wiped fruit juice from her mouth. "I haven't been by myself to know, but I think I would like company best." And then someone would know if she needed finding. Plus there hadn't been any worry about defense when she had gone with Pella. The priestess commanded a certain respect that had extended, somewhat, to Nora, like a shadow.

"I prefer." She informed him with a sheepish smile, picking at what was left on the plate and watching Aramis shamelessly. He was very different from Emile, who was all reckless emotion and hands. Emile smiled and laughed more, and made Nora feel right at home. Aramis was... not cool, like Pella, but harder to reach than Emile. Maybe it was the difference in their castes that made them seem so far apart as brothers. If a warlord prince was passion, what was a prince? Precision? At least his caste was lighter on the air.

None of the pressing turbulence she sometimes felt from Emile. Or the cold disdain that radiated from Pella. Nora decided she would like it. Like the calm in a storm. A pocket of steady water to soothe the battering. "That would be great!" She exclaimed, brimming with smiles and happiness. Then she would get to witness all of them in their second skin. Come to know her new rookery in the water as well as without. She still felt very much like a stranger in some instances.

Nora rode the high of such an outing right into the topic of monkeys, which seemed less foolish than proclaiming Emile as the favorite. She knew Pella's eyes rolled whenever she became to excited about him. Could feel them behind her back when she greeted her rescue after any long separation. Which was any separation.

Head tilting, Nora drew a wet trail on the plate with a piece of fruit. She licked pulp from her lips and considered the best way to compromise with Aramis. She very much wanted then to he friends. There was strife enough in the family as it was. Pella and Emile were like a wildfire in the middle of the house. Popping and crackling and sometimes flaring violently. She didn't want to get caught in such a terrible spiral with this brother.

"Could they be outside pets, like the cats?" Nora asked, plying Aramis with his own reasoning. She could be happy with a monkey that lived outside. Or a troop of them. A troop, someone had told her they were called. Nora found the term endearing. "Surely they can share the trees with the cats? They seem to be the better climbers anyway." She had seen some daring acrobatics in the tree tops while monkey watching with Emile. Or monkey watching while Emile was busy elsewhere. Careful to stay in the spot he had left her and not wander too terribly far.


3
Rosnay Island / Re: The restless wife
« on: August 15, 2019, 04:35:04 PM »

Nora didn't think Emile really agreed. Too lulled by her petting to be worried about much of anything. Even his excuses about rain and danger lacked a certain amount of vehemence. Nora smiled against his scalp and ran her nose through his hair. "Sounds better than sitting inside doing nothing." Exhaling hair, Nora wiggled her nose and pressed a kiss to his forehead since he was up for air.

He looked ridiculous half buried beneath her breasts, but Nora wasn't going to worry about it if he was enjoying himself. Which he must have been since he stayed there. Hands traveling the length of her back and lower while he thought. Face dipping in and out of view until Nora had to hold her breath not to laugh at him. Focusing on her hands instead, and the knots she found in the muscle of his shoulder. "If you're sure." It didn't sound like forgiveness. But maybe it was all Nora could hope for.

She would just have to trust Emile's word for it. "Me too." The silence was oppressive. Nora hadn't meant to get lost! She had been so very sure of the directions and herself. But now she knew why she'd never found home again despite all her swimming. A bad sense of direction had let her straight into danger. Thankfully something else had lead Emile to her. Emile who leaned over her with a gleam in his eye. No longer hidden against her chest, but half covering her with his body instead.

"Of course." She wanted to do everything with Emile. The day was never boring when he was near. Nora picked a bit of sheet fuzz from his arm and gave it a pat. He seemed keen on the idea too. Nora was ready to try her new soap out on him. The scents always changed a little when they were on a body. Mixing with a person's natural oils. Under Emile's hands Nora wiggled. Shoulders hiking up around her ears, she curled her fingers around the side of his neck and felt his pulse under her palm.

"You're the one who worked all day. You probably need a massage more than me." His fingers skimmed the bare skin of her thigh below the hem of his shirt. Pella had been mad a long time. Bottom lip slipping forward, Nora hugged him close. Bodies flush together so she could be sure. Sure that he was aroused and looking for the sort of relief she wasn't sure she could give him. Not yet, anyway. Maybe soon though. Or one day, at least.

Nora didn't know. His spear was like any other part of him pressed to her body. No more stirring than a knee or a shoulder. Not unpleasant, but not quivering, as she'd heard it described. Aware something was missing in her reaction but unable to name what she'd never experienced. Nora rubbed circles between his shoulder blades. Face hidden behind his ear. With a sigh, she tangled her legs with his, knees leveraging him over so she could slide onto his back.

"I'll rub, you sleep." Shirt skimming his back as she leaned forward and dug the heels of her hands up the muscles along his spine. Knees in the bed and toes hooked over his calves, Nora blushed as she kneaded. "My mother asked the healer." She explained. The same face burning embarrassment she'd felt then surfacing now. It made her arms trembled as she worked a knot she discovered below his shoulder blade.

"She said everything was as it should be." She'd been a stone faced matron. Not an ounce of sympathy found anywhere Nora could see. Just, nothing. Like a smooth stone or a worn shell. "Mother said I'm just a late bloomer. That it'll come. Like my Offering." There had been a tension Nora hadn't understood. A sort of pitying worry in her mother's eyes when she'd decided that was all it was. Late coming like Nora's Offering. Which wasn't even late at all!

In a way the total disinterest of the healer had been more reassuring than her mother's reassurances. Nora ground the muscles of his lower back beneath her thumb. "You said Pella liked being angry. Maybe ask her?" It seemed reasonable to Nora, asking for what you needed. Even if what you needed was sex.


4
Rosnay Island / Re: The restless wife
« on: July 13, 2019, 05:51:46 PM »

"It's not your fault." Nora sang, tossing a grin at him. She thought Emile capable of quite a lot of things,  but making it rain was not one of them. "Too bad it won't snow." She pouted wistfully. She'd asked about snow before, and Pella's derisive laughter had assured Nora there would be no snow to break up the monotony of the rain.

She could live without snow. Especially with Emile back in the house to keep her company. The others were nice, but they didn't tolerate her the same way. Or maybe it was that they tolerated her and Emile accepted her the way she was. Glad for her laughter and constant need for his attention. "That does not sound better, Emile." Nora wrinkled her nose and then dove beneath the blanket. Giggling into the mattress as he laughed made room for her.

Warm skin for her to snuggle against and pet. He would turn the room chilly soon. Nora liked the chill on her skin, but only because there was a blanket to burrow under and Emile to curl against. "No!" She giggled against his cheek, giving him a gentle pinch for the insult. Emile made some anyway. Pretty lights that turned into a dazzle when they reached the ceiling. Nora cooed appreciatively a she watched them. Her own witchlights always turned out... wrong.

Sometimes they ended up as witchfire instead.

"Mhm. There were a bunch of apples left over, going all soft and mealy so I used them." Her soap never looked pretty, but Nora was slowly improving its consistency. She just had to get someone else to control the heat in the pot. But it stayed solid now, only dissolving once it was wet like it was supposed to, instead of coming apart in her hand. If it came together at all.

Drawn in by the soap, Emile began his sniffing. Hands spread across her back to keep her still while he was at it. Nora didn't want to escape him, but she couldn't help the way her body pulled away from his nose. But it tickled! Shoulders scrunching up around her ears, Nora giggled. Back bowing outward and then in as she wiggled beneath the onslaught. Behind her ear. Down her shoulder. And ending where he stopped so often, right between her breasts.

Trying to catch her breath, Nora pet the dark fuzz of his hair. "You sure do like it there." She teased. She didn't know why. It was one of the warmest parts of her body. Heat and sweat caught and held there. "It was borrring." She complained, fondling the curve of his ear. "Can I go with you next time?" Pella was harder to answer about. She wasn't saucy at all. She just pretended Nora didn't exist, which was worse.

Resting her cheek against his hair, Nora pet the width of his shoulders and sighed. "Will she ever stop being mad?" They'd almost made friends on the trip to town, but now Nora worried that Pella would never forgive her. There would just be that dismissive silence. At least she wasn't yelling and slapping at Emile anymore, which Nora was glad for.

She didn't think he liked the silence any better, holding tight to her hips as he came back even with her. Lips pressing the crease of mouth in a sort of kiss. "You can have more than one. Want me to go with you?" Then they could both smell like apples. "No one ever says anything when I take more than one bath." She explained by way of reassurance.


5
Rosnay Island / The restless wife
« on: July 12, 2019, 06:54:06 PM »

She inhaled. Arms above her head to let the shirt slide down them. It caught on the crown of her hair, elbows tucking to press the fabric to her nose. A good clean smell. The scent of the soap used to wash the fabric, faint traces of Emile. Plenty if Nora, since she'd chosen it from his collection for her own. Or theirs. Emile still wore it sometimes, but Nora wore it most. Nearly always to bed unless it was being washed or used by its original owner.

Soft and worn. Nora gave it a little tug so it popped down over her head. Hem falling to her thighs, stitches just starting to fray. Fabric like an old friend against her skin. Smiling, she kicked her dress up from the circle it made at her feet. Catching it in her fingertips, Nora hung it from a hook on the back of Emile's door, lifting up on her tip toes more because the stretching felt good than because she had to.

"Is it dark?" She asked, twitching a curtain open to peer out into the yard. Furtive shadows slipping away as if the cats could sense her looking. Almost. And raining. "It's always raining." Nora pouted to herself, picking up Emile's boots and tucking them under the bed where she wouldn't have to worry about tripping on them in the night if she had to leave the bed.

Laughing, she tumbled into the bed and dragged the blanket over her body. Elbows and toes used to work her way up toward the pillows. She appeared from under the blanket with a breathless laugh, hair clinging to the sheets and her face, crackling around her head from the static. "Definitely dark." Fingers greedy as she reached for him, Nora curled her body along Emile's. Head resting on his shoulder, arm draped over his chest. The other wedged between them and trying to wiggle beneath his shoulders.

Legs doing a similar dance. He'd been gone most of the day doing work. Too busy to play with Nora, and the rain too heavy for fishing. She'd found herself caught in the house, underfoot and bored. Nose to his ear, Nora giggled, fingers digging into his side playfully before spreading wide to cup his ribcage. "Tired?" She fretted, worried she was disturbing him when he was trying go rest. But she'd missed him and been too much inside to be calm or tired.


6
Rosnay Island / Re: Domesticity
« on: July 08, 2019, 04:19:53 PM »

"And money is important." She'd been told a little, and had learned more watching Pella haggle in the market. Bargaining, the priestess had called it, but Nora had seen haggling before. There just usually wasn't money involved. Just things traded back and forth, their worth argued over as each person tried to get the best of the other.

Tearing up one of the leaves, Nora pursed her lips. "Is having pockets dressing for business?" Nora asked him. She didn't have a business and had never had to dress for it. Mostly she slipped one skin for another and never much worried about what either was wearing. Chewing on a piece of seaweed, Nora shrugged. "I don't think I would like to go by myself." If she went by herself, how would anyone know she hadn't made it there or back?

She was afraid to get lost when Emile might not know to go look for her. Then she would be lost forever. Nora worried. She worried about smells and clothes and lost. Lips twisting at Aramis. "I know how to work the bath." Maybe she did stink and she just couldn't tell. She stuffed a piece of mango into her mouth and chewed, vowing to take a bath as soon as possible. Lips twisting even more, Nora sank in her seat.

"Not now, though, right?" She'd practiced sewing plenty of times. It never did much more than frustrate everyone involved. And Nora did not want to frustrate Aramis. Frustrating people was not a good way to get them to like you. Heels bouncing against the legs of her chair, Nora changed the subject. Fishing was much better than sewing. "I like fishing that way too. I'm good at fishing." She boasted with a grin, breaking a piece of mango in half.

"Maybe we can go together sometime." She had only been out with Emile in their second skin so far. It was best if she knew what they all looked like, so she could recognize them in the water. Smiling back at him, Nora cocked her head to the side and ran down a list of things she liked. Which was a lot of things. Currently, at the top of the list were Emile and - "Monkeys. We don't have those where I'm from. I like them." She laughed, picturing their antics.

"I would like to tame one for a pet. There was an old man in the village with one on his shoulder." She told him, sliding to the edge of her chair. "He let me pet it in exchange for a shell."


7
Rosnay Island / Re: Domesticity
« on: July 04, 2019, 05:56:14 AM »

Nora watched Aramis roll out pearls over the horizon of her food. Pink, grey. Misshapen and pearls that tried to roll away from him. He explained, without reproach, why the differences mattered, and more importantly, why they needed to know what they had. Head tilting, she wondered where they kept them all. Was there a pearl room? "Can't you just find what people want when they ask?

"Not out in the sea, but in the collection?"
She had sat with Emile enough hours to know that finding a specific pearl in the oyster bed would be impossible. He shucked dozens of shells before finding a single pearl. It was horribly boring, but she stayed to keep Emile company. Trying to tempt cats or monkeys close when she got too antsy.

It all seemed to very complicated. But Nora understood that the pearls made them marks. And here, marks bought the things you needed. Which were yours and no one elses. Except the things they bought for the house, the way Pella had said it implying that the house encompassed everyone inside of it. So the plates were Nora's too. And Aramis' and Emile's.

But the clothes were just for Nora unless she wanted to share. It gave her a headache. And Aramis was giving her a worry. Maybe she had picked bad clothes. Everyone was always worrying about them. Soap was much easier.

"Outside?" Nora questioned, unsure of Aramis' meaning. She'd been outside plenty and no one had said anything about her dress one way or another. She'd needed more than two dresses, though. Pella had said. The one she'd had with her too old. And the one she'd been loaned too tight. Was this one too loose, Nora wondered, looking down at herself. "In the town?" She hadn't been back since the first time.

"I will do my best." She promised him. Worrying about how she would stay dry when it rained so often. Maybe she would be able to figure out the shields every one else used. Or just stay inside. But clean and dry was only for town, right? Did she smell? Nora tucked her nose to her shoulder and inhaled. Smelling sea salt and herself, with a bit of damp fabric thrown in.

"Thank you, Aramis." Smile returned at his offer. "My stitches always end up crooked." She would do her best to take good care of her things, but it was nice to know he would fix them if she had an accident. There were a lot of things to get snagged on here. Toying with her food, Nora watched him eat with an avid sort of happiness. Eyes tracking him, memories tucked away of what he seemed to like and not like.

She would catch him more fish.

"Do you like fishing? Emile said he would get me a pole that is not so long." She stretched her arms out and wiggled her fingers. "I kept smacking things with his. Because its so big." And Nora would forget, turning while talking on their way to the rocks that sat far enough out to see for Nora to perch on and fish. Extravagant promises of a wharf had been made, but Nora had merely laughed and kissed Emile's cheek.

What would she do with a whole dock?

"I like fishing." She added, as if that hadn't been apparent.


8
Rosnay Island / Re: Domesticity
« on: July 02, 2019, 04:36:44 AM »

"I would love to." A task done happily. Nora liked her new home. It was a strange sort of rookery and nothing at like the home she'd come from, but Nora was intent to love it just as much. And to be twice as useful. So she picked a little but of everything she could find in hopes that Aramis would find food on his plate he liked.

Unbothered by his looking. Emile was always looking too. The intensity slowly blunted as Nora adjusted to always being under scrutiny. Nothing bad ever happened from the staring. And sometimes Nora did a fair bit of it herself. Watching the household interact. Trying to figure out how Emile got the shells to crack open. She smiled at Aramis when their eyes met. Cheeks round and crinkling her lower lids.

At the table, she tried not to kick her feet under her chair. Or make a mess on any of the papers. Curious, and a little protective, about Aramis' work with Emile's pearls. Straightforward as a tide, Nora asked him. And then chewed a piece of fruit while he talked. Mango, Pella had said it was called a mango. And even though Aramis showed her, Nora could not see any difference between this pearl and any other.

"Does it matter?" Never imagining that because it did was the very reason why Aramis did it. Nora sucked juice from her fingers and wiped it from her chin. Sticky fingers rolling bits of fish up in a leaf a she'd seen Pella do. Usually there was also rice, but Nora didn't like rice. Maybe Aramis didn't either because he pushed his plate away. The way he sat making Nora sit up straighter and wipe her hands on her lap.

"Clothes?" She asked in confusion. She was wearing clothes now? Nora looked down. Yes. She was wearing clothes. Or a dress, at least. "Yes? Pella took me shopping. I've clothes that are just mine. Did you want to see them? Emile wanted to see them." Was she wearing the wrong clothes? Was there a preference between one brother and the next? Nora made a knot of blue fabric in her lap, food sitting heavy in her stomach.

Was Aramis going to stop talking to her like Pella had?


9
Rosnay Island / Re: Domesticity
« on: June 30, 2019, 06:02:07 AM »

Nora paused in the entryway of the kitchen. Still damp from her dip in the sea, she worked bare toes over bare toes, leaving behind a damp imprint on the floor. She'd never seen Aramis in the kitchen like this. Actually, she saw Aramis less than anyone else. He was very busy, she was told, and very important, Pella had said.

"Hi." She grinned at him, unwrapping the towel from her chest to dab at her hair, which was drying into tight waves and tangles. "Yes." Eating sounded very good, now that he had mentioned it. Mopping up the last of the water beading on her skin, Nora folded the towel neatly and vanished it into her cabinet just in case.

"Would you like something too?" Heels high as she danced into the kitchen and began banging about for something to eat. Two plates pulled out and filled with various things she found in the cold box and fruit bowl. She tried her best not to cook when someone else wasn't there to rescue whatever she was about to burn.

Careful not to bump any of his things on the table, Nora set the plates down and plopped into the seat across from Aramis. Her blue dress two sizes too big, it sagged and bunched around her body like an ill worn sack. But she liked it for pulling onto a sea soaked body. "What are you doing with Emile's pearls?" She queried, holding a plate out to him.


10
Rosnay Island / Re: Spite
« on: June 25, 2019, 04:36:54 AM »

Nora agreed cheerfully. Happy to show him the things she acquired at the market. Things that were just for her. And a few that she'd picked to share. Baubles for the house, a pretty blanket. More soap and replacements for the oils and lotions she'd used up in her first bath.

She thoroughly enjoyed their time together. While she liked the others in the house, and was content when they were all together, Nora liked being alone with Emile the most. Especially in the sea. But this was almost as good. They could talk with no one else around to judge anything they said. Comfortable because Emile had proven quick to forgive when she said stupid things. Or made mistakes.

Like the one she had made at the tree. Laughing, not unkindly, Emile showed her where she had gone wrong. North instead of east. "Oh." Nora frowned, eyes squinting as she looked toward the sun. Her internal compass at odds with Emile's directions. Before she could question him more he was kissing her forehead and pulling her over roots.

"What are you doing?" Nora asked, fingers wiggling under his lips. Then wiggling because they were empty. Emile hefting a rock and his hunting knife. Crouching beside him, Nora covered her ears and watched him drag the blade through the stone. The sound made her jaw ache, even through the protective barrier of her ears. While it felt like an eternity it, it didn't take long for him to carve a heart into the face of the rock.

"Pretty." She cooed, half reaching for it as Emile put it back. A gift for her that was not for taking, he explained its purpose, making her cheeks pink beneath their sunburn. "What if someone moves it?" She asked, knowing she would pick up just such a rock if she ever came across one. Standing, she slipped her hand back in his and followed him east. Which still felt like north.

"Oh yes, lets!" Bouncing in excitement at his side, Nora nearly took the lead. While she was not a terrible fisher with a pole, she was a great one as a seal, and Nora knew that was the kind of fishing Emile meant. He didn't seem to get much enjoyment out of the sitting kind. Happily on the right path now, Nora pointed out markers when she spotted them, just to prove she could.

East, she told her inner compass. This is east. But her inner compass did not believe her. Laughing, Nora picked a flower off a low hanging branch. "Silly Emile. You can't sell people." She teased. The very idea! Beach spotted, Nora dared him to a race, dancing over wet roots to get to the sand. There she pulled her dress over her head and vanished it along with the flower as she went. Seal diving deep after a burst of painful craft and writhing.


11
Rosnay Island / Re: Spite
« on: June 24, 2019, 04:23:34 AM »

"I'm sorry." Nora fretted as she soothed. Fingers kneading at his joints. Wrist, elbow, shoulder. "I'll get better." She promised. A few more trips and she would have the way down pat. No need for him to have to worry or hunt her down. No need to fight with Pella either, at least not about her. Nora felt extra heartsick at causing more strife between Emile and his first wife.

A gift might make it better. Or at least make up for some of the trouble she caused. Grinning, Nora nodded. "Yes for you!" He seemed happier already, cheered by a present he hadn't even opened. Nora giggled as he caught her hand, nose to the wrapper and lips to her wrist as he examined it. "You're welcome." Wonderful he called it. Nora was glad, slipping the bar into her pocket when he let go. She would put it in the shower for him.

And then she realized she should have gotten two! One for the bathtub as well. All the more reason to learn the right way back and forth, she decided, fingers linking with his as they walked back to the trail. Nora catching him up on all he'd missed and all she had learned in their absence. Eyes looking for markers and monkeys as they went. She found neither.

"I did. I was. Thank you so much." A tidy stack of clothing just for her. It felt strange and weighed heavily in her cabinet. Nora had only ever owned her Jewel and its setting. The one thing never to be shared. When she died, her Jewel would go back to the Darkness and her setting would be destroyed. She would have to remember to tell Emile that. But not just then, because they had found the tree.

"See. Here is where I went east!" Nora informed him, pointing back north the way the had come, frustration blown over her lips. "Just like Pella said." She turned a pout on Emile. "Did I go too east?" She asked him, still clutching his hand. She wouldn't let go unless she had to. Ever. It just felt right to hold on.


12
Rosnay Island / Re: Spite
« on: June 23, 2019, 04:54:04 PM »

"The tree." Nora explained, ashamed only because she had failed, not because she had tried. Still not sure how she had managed it. Mind not suspicious enough to assume she had been set on the wrong path, or even consider the idea, as it never presented itself. "It was the right one. The big one with all the rocks in its roots. Pella showed it to me." Nora stretched up, fingers spreading toward the sky to describe the amazing height of the tree.

And then back down again to pet his hair. Shorn away from his face, and short around his ears. Answering his grin with one of her own, Nora shook her head. "No." She sang. "I like the way it scratches. It sort of tickle-y. Like your probes." And he got so quiet when she did it. Like he was paying attention to only her hands. Nora thought it was cute.

"That far?" She whimpered, deflating against him. At least he wasn't mad. Laughing softly into her hair and kissing her head. Craft summoned up to help cool her down.
Nora wasn't sure she'd ever get used to the heat. Or the sudden way it rained. And it rained a lot! Giggling, she squirmed away from the tickle at her neck, hand rubbing the shaded skin beneath her hair.

"I think she was worried they would sell the curio again if she didn't stay close." She had heard Pella muttering to herself about it. Half speaking to Nora but mostly to herself. She could tell, by the tone. Eyes following Emile's, Nora wondered what he was looking for. Story continued as she helped search. "Oooh." Nose wrinkling in confusion, Nora shrugged. She did not understand the strange way Pella and Emile's relationship worked, and so did her best to keep away from it.

"I don't know. I kind of like them." The made the best noises, and Nora was in awe of the way they swung through the trees. Leaping from branch to branch! Faster than she could run on the ground. But not as fast as she was in the water. Not even Emile could catch her in her seal form. Eyeing the plant he pointed at, Nora considered, nose and eyebrows bobbing. "Maybe a little, now that you say."

Nora followed him over to the tree, watching as he broke off a broad leaf and split it open. "It looks gross." She laughed, dipping her fingers into it. Squishing it between her fingers, Nora laughed, dabbing up more and swiping it down her nose. "It's cold!" More laughter as she folded into him. Aloe leaf vanished. Emile held her close, lips pressed to her temple in what was a kiss but didn't feel like a kiss. Nora pet his arm. Wrist to shoulder and back again in a soothing repetition.

"Are you okay? Did you fight again?" She didn't know how to help him. Nora nuzzled some of the aloe onto his cheek and grinned. "I got you something!" Gifts were always nice, even when you shared them with all your agemates. But this Emile wouldn't have to share with anyone. Nora had traded shells a few pretty pieces of coral she'd collected for it. Calling it in, she thumped the bar against his chest.

"You said you didn't have any of your own. So I got you some. Smell it!" She waved it beneath his nose to entice him into taking a sniff. Nora thought it had a nice smell. Like sea water and something she didn't have a name for. Pella said it was an herb, like for cooking. "Good huh? You can keep it in the shower." Which she had recently discovered. Squealing when the water had pelted her.

"I couldn't decide on one for myself. But the lady told me all about how she makes it and gave some slivers so I can try it myself." She rambled happily, imparting the information she'd learned to Emile.


13
Rosnay Island / Re: Spite
« on: June 23, 2019, 07:11:21 AM »

"Here where?" Nora laughed, peeking through the trees at him. She moved a low sweeping branch her path, and stepped right through a broad leafed fern. Fronds tickling her legs as she stepped between them and over the squat center stalk. And then there he was. Emile. Strong arms sweeping her up and making her squeal.

Around he spun them. Nora clung to his neck, cheek against his ear as she giggled. Dizzy for a moment before he set her down again, but didn't let her go. All the air crushed from her lungs. Nora didn't mind. If he was there squeezing her, then she was safe and he'd kept his promise to find her. "I'm sorry. I am." She promised when he let her breathe again. Hands working her shoulders and arms while his probes checked the rest of her. They tickled, making her squirm.

"I don't know. I got lost. But, Emile, I did just like Pella said." Nora explained, just a hint of whining at the end. She had! She'd followed Pella's instructions exactly. Excited to go home and fetch Emile. To be useful. Especially after Pella had been so nice to her. Nora pet the prickly hair on his head where it was cut close. Palms running down over his cheeks.

"Am I?" Nora sighed and leaned into him. Curling against his chest. Sunburn discovered when her nose scraped against his shirt. "I'm sorry to cause so much trouble. I wasn't running away though. I was coming to get you. Pella found a new curio but she couldn't get in her cabinet." Nora rested her forearms against his chest and looked up at him.

"I put a bunch of her things in mine to try and make room but it still wouldn't fit. She said Aramis was too busy so I better go get you. I don't know how she was able to reach him on a thread but not you." Nora blabbered, giving his chin a kiss when it got close enough. Not knowing Pella had been making excuses to keep Nora from bothering Aramis, while simultaneously getting Nora out of her own hair.

Wrapping her arms around his chest, Nora put her cheek to it and huffed softly. "You scared the monkeys away. And they stole my flower." She wished they had monkeys in their cove. Nora was sure she would have better luck taming one than she'd has with the cats so far. "I am sorry, Emile. I didn't mean to cause trouble." She would have to do better. If she kept getting lost and burning the bread they might not want her to stay anymore.


14
Rosnay Island / Re: Spite
« on: June 22, 2019, 07:16:47 AM »

"Just lost my ass."

Nora was blissfully unaware of the strife she'd caused. Though not so unaware of the fact that she was indeed lost. Pella's directions had taken her to the small path they had emerged from. A decoy, Pella had called it. The path itself wound the wrong way and lead to another village farther south in a keyhole twist, Pella had said.

At the very tall tree, she was to turn east. Nora remembered the tree. They had stopped to admire it. Pella pointing out all the orange blossoms that sprung from its branches. And the fanciful groups of stones arranged around its roots. Markers, so they would always know this was the right tree, even if lightning make it not the tallest. Patting the tree, Nora had turned east just like she was supposed to.

Off the path and into the vegetation. It was cooler there, if darker. Light different colors as it filtered through leaves and flowers. Splattering her skin in greens and pinks. Nora held her arms out to the shafts and watched the patterns change down their length. Eyes searching for the other markers Pella had shown her. There wouldn't be a trail because they didn't want to lead others home.

"Home, home, home." Nora chanted as she skipped around a puddle hopscotch style. It had been her favorite land game as a child. Not that they had often been able to tempt her out of the water. Even before she knew how to shift. A flower picked and slipped through her hair, stem tucked behind her ear. She admired herself in another dark pool and then went looking for markers.

Which she couldn't find. Steps slowing, Nora looked harder and farther. Zigzagging through the trees in an attempt to spot them. Instead she found herself in a clearing. A large stump split down the middle was the focal point. New shoots just beginning to grow around it. And one up through its crack. Nora cooed and peered between the two darkened husks to look at the sapling. "This was a good place to wait," Nora decided. Emile had promised that he would come if she waited, whenever and wherever she got lost.

Then she heard the monkeys. Catching sight of them in the trees. The chittered and called to one another. Talking about her, Nora thought, because they lingered at the edges where she can see them. Curious, she tried to get a better look. They were very shy. Shyer even than the cats at home. She was peering around a tree, rough bark tickling her palms, when she felt the dark sweep of Emile's probes beneath her.

Jerking back around the trunk to look for him, Nora felt something yank the flower from her hair. And some of her hair with it. "Hey!" She cried, looking up in time to see a monkey dancing away with it. Twisting, Nora scanned the tree line, having slipped a little farther away from the clearing than she'd meant to. "Emile?" There he was! "Emile!" Hands pressed to the Tiger Eye above her breasts, Nora stretched up onto her toes in happiness.


15
Rosnay Island / Re: Worthless [cw]
« on: June 17, 2019, 06:01:04 PM »

His hands closed over hers, holding Nora to the hug she didn’t want to release anyway. A cheek to her forehead. It was good comfort. Emile’s skin was warm wet and smelled nicely of sugary soap. He liked this them too. Nora was glad.

”You said she was angry because you did not know how to be a husband.” Nora chewed her lip, chin bobbing against Emile’s shoulder. ”I don’t know how to be a wife. What if that makes you mad? Then we will just be repeating the cycle backwards.” There would be unhappiness and fighting. Nora didn’t want either of those things. She wanted this. Peace and quiet and Emile.

She wanted nothing but kindness between them. Friendship. Kinship. He’d saved her from the tigermen and the whales. Taught her how to fish with a long pole and the best way to keep the other males away from her. How to get in and out of a hammock. Lots of things. He probably had more to teach, and time to spend with her. And Nora had all those things to repay him for, which she couldn’t do if she was gone. Not a chance to tell him she’d be a wife if she had too. Both of them too agreeable. Her with her tempting, and him with his giving in.

”Washing your hair makes me happy.” And it did. A small thing she could do well. She liked when people washed her hair and brushed it out for her. Emile didn’t have enough to need any real grooming, but she could shampoo it and massage his scalp, which he liked. Leaning backward into her until he was nearly resting on her shoulder. Nora grinned and scratched his scalp with her fingernails. ”Imm glad you like it.” So much he offered her shopping trips with Pella.

Things she could trade for. Emile wiped that worry away too. More explanations on how the wider world worked. Or at least this stretch of it. Nothing for Nora to worry about. Pella and Emile would take care of everything. It made her curious to meet the rest. Aramis, his brother, and the women Emile called his. ”Okay. I’ll tell Pella.” Nora agreed before fretting over his hair some more. Emile simply dunked it into her lap, making Nora squeal. Hands caught under his to help work the soap free.

”Don’t drown.” She teased, blowing bubbles away. Tucking him against her shoulder when he surfaced, long body sprawled against her shorted one. She pet him for a moment, just a brief one, and then he was on the move again, Nora following him out of the tub eagerly. ”Just a little.” He wrapped her up in a towel and helped her clean up the bathroom. Puddles wiped up with towels, which Nora gathered up with their clothes and dumped into a basket set aside just for that purpose. Padding after Emile to see the room they’d picked for hers.

”Okay, okay. I’ll help you clean up that mess too.” Eyes wide as she looked around the room. A whole room just for her. Nora didn’t like it. The room was nice, but being alone in it sounded lonely. Which is what it proved to be. Quiet solitude when Emile left to get dressed. Nora busied herself with drying off and fitting her body into borrowed clothes that didn’t quite fit. Quick to find the kitchen again and make herself useful.


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