Aslein walked into her office. Her eyes were tired from reading papers and her head hurt from hearing all the pleas of the town. As she sat down heavily in her chair behind her desk, she realized that someone else was in the room with her. In the corner by her bookshelf stood a man with a cloak, the hood covering his head from view. She felt the old vibrations coming from him and realized who is was instantly. "What do you want Toren? I'm tired." Said Aslein; laying her head back on the top of the chair. Her red/gold hair spilling down over the sides created a halo of light around her. Toren stepped forward, sliding the hood back, exposing his dark hair and beautiful features. The tailored clothing black as onyx, making his skin gleam gold; his hair the color of deep purple fading into black at the tips shone brightly in the dimly lit room. Aslein sighed in her mind, thinking of how it had felt to run her hands through his hair. God, she missed him so much. The needing only hit her when she was faced by him or when she was extremely lonely. And she was both of those things at that moment, she realized quietly to herself. "Our son is almost a man, he needs stability." Said Toren; his voice strong and soft at the same time. Aslein looked at him hard, her eyes softly turning steel grey, "And you think what on this subject? Let me remind you he is considered the crown prince of this realm, not yours." "I could never forget, you always remind at every turn that our son belongs to you more so than me. I'm his father in name half the time." He said, turning to look out the window, trying not to notice how the low lighting made Aslein seem even more soft and beautiful. Toren sighed, deciding to take the offensive strategy and moved to behind the desk, getting down to eye level with Aslein, kneeling on one knee before her, "I just want to spend some time here with him and reassure him that he is still my highest priority in life." He placed a gloved finger on her lips, stilling her from speaking, "I will sleep in the barracks with the other soldiers, this is your home and I'm not welcome here, but I do this for Catheous. I am formally asking you for permission as a concerned father to spend some time here." Aslein closed her eyes, trying to ignore his gloved finger resting on her lips. The warmth was spreading from just his finger into her, reminding her of things best forgotten. She placed her hand on Toren's and removed it from her mouth to her lap, changing the hold to lace her fingers with his. Her heart beat rapidly as if no time had past from the last day they had been truly together to now. She opened her eyes, the color like a morning mist; grey with whites and blues mixed in. "Toren, you can stay, on one condition." She said, looking him straight in the face. "Whatever you ask, I shall comply with; this is your kingdom." He said, placing his other hand on top of their combined hands. "Then you must stay here...in a guest room in the castle." Said Aslein; her free hand coming to rest on top of their others. Toren smiled slightly, removing his left hand from the pile and softly caressing Aslein's cheek with his fingers, stopping under her chin. He leaned forward slowly, not wanting to break the spell and send her fleeing. He had missed the way her eyes would change to a stormy blue/grey just before he kissed her. But as he neared her lips, he decided to change direction and pressed a gentle kiss on her left cheek, just beside her mouth. Aslein inhaled sharply as Toren kissed her, her fingers curling into his, the feelings from the past resurging to the forefront. "Mother, I'm home and...oh." Said a young male voice as he entered the study. His face becoming a look of surprise mixed with fear on his young countenance as he saw the two people who hated each other starring so intently at one another. Aslein stood up fast, too fast to be stable; knocking Toren over and falling to the side in a flurry of skirts. Toren kicked the chair over, reaching for her hand to keep her from being hurt and tugged her into his arms. Catheous ran forward, hoping that this wouldn't be bad, wishing he'd asked his father why he had wanted to speak with mom. As he came around the desk, he saw layers of skirts in disarray and his father and mother embraced. He stared in awe at a sight he had never seen, his parents holding one another. Aslein slowly opened her eyes and stared at a wall of chest of muscle swathed in a black tunic and black leather vest. Her left arm was locked to her side while her right arm was cradled between their bodies, her hand gripped in his. She sighed, thinking of how good it felt to be in his arms. Toren heard the sigh and images he had locked away came rushing back, making him want her as much as he had wanted her when they had been together. He heard a discreet cough and remembered they weren't alone. "Umm, this is awkward seeing you two together like this..." said Catheous as he bent over to pick up the chair and move it back. He kept his face averted to allow for some modesty. Aslein sat up rapidly, placing hands on Toren's chest her legs tangled in her skirt and half straddling his hips. She looked down at him and stared at his face. His eyes were half closed, the hungry look in them making her wet instantly. She licked her suddenly dry lips and felt him suck in a breath. "I can't get up until you get off of me." Toren ground out through clenched teeth, one hand resting on her left hip, the other laying on the ground. Aslein gasped, than looked for something solid to help lift her off of him. She looked around and then motioned to Catheous, "Give me your hand dear, I need a bit of help." Catheous stepped closer, careful not to step on any clothing and placed his hands on his mother waist, pulling her back. He realized she wasn't as big as he had remembered from the last time he had saw her. He could easily lift her up without straining really. He backed up, moving his mother with him to the end of the desk, than waited for her to stand on her own. Aslein smiled, knowing that her son was no longer a little boy, but a young man. She felt the floor under her foot and giggled a bit as she felt bare floor under her stocking foot. She stood up and rearranged her skirt into a semblance of order. Turning, she ran a hand across her son's cheek smiling at him, "I'm so happy your home Theo, thank you for helping me up." Catheous smiled and then leaned forward to kiss his mother on her right cheek, "Me too Mom. I missed our discussions." He turned and walked around his mother, "You need any help Father?" Toren looked up feeling like he had been caught with his hands in the cookie jar after the thoughts he had had running through his head. He took his son's out stretched had and pulled himself into a kneeling position, then used the desk as leverage to hull himself into a standing position. "Thank you Catheous." He looked down and realized he was standing on a shoe that wasn't his, "Aslein, are you missing a slipper?" Aslein smiled and put out her hand, "Yes, I noticed." Toren bent over and picked it up, his black wings shimmering in the candle glow. He straightened back up and smiled at Aslein, waving the shoe at her. "Catheous, go do something besides standing around here. I'll talk with you later." Said Toren; his purple eyes alive with mischief. Aslein nodded her head, then turned back to Toren and thrust her hand forward again, "my shoe please."
Catheous walked away from his parents and closed the door to the office. He looked at the closed door and smiled, then ran down the corridor to find Cordelia. She's gonna flip when I tell her, he thought.
Toren waited until Catheous was out of the room before he stalked forward and dangled the shoe up out of Aslein's reach. "You have to ask me for it and I'll decide whether you deserve it back." He said; his face alit with mischief. Aslein's face sunk and then she got angry, but she calmed herself a little, realizing that this was a test by the gods to see if she could resist him. "Please, may I have my shoe back?" she asked nicely. Toren shook his head, his black wings fluttering with the movement, "try again." Aslein ground her teeth in frustration, and then smiled as an idea came to her. She moved forward, bringing herself flush against him, wrapping her arms around his waist, and looking up at him. Her face was soft and seductive while her voice was sexy quiet, "If I don't get my shoe back, I'll kiss you until you let it go." Toren starred down her and nearly groaned aloud when she fit her body with his. The soft press of her breasts made him quake with wanting. He closed his eyes, and then opened them, the color nearly dark as midnight, "I dare you." Aslein starred up him hard, and then leaned up for a quick peck on the cheek. She smiled evilly, "there's your kiss you overbearing prick." She started to back away when Toren swept her up into his arms and growled just before crushing her lips against his. He only intended to tease her, but when she said she'd kiss him just to get her shoe back; he had damn near kissed her then. He felt her resist him until he changed the position of the kiss, leaning her back slightly to nip on her bottom lip. She still felt and tasted like she had fifteen years ago. It had been ages since he'd taken a woman, and he felt the crushing need to plunge into her driving him close to the edge of insanity. He softened the kiss and rested his hips on the top of the desk, pulling Aslein in between his legs, effectively trapping her in his embrace. He wrapped his wings around the two of them, shielding them from anyone who might walk in unannounced. Aslein tensed up as Toren dragged her back into his arms. She felt fear at being touched like this by the one man she had truly loved and still loved deep in her heart. She felt him nip her lower lip and she nearly melted right there and then; the feeling was so good. She relaxed as he gentled his demand on her mouth, feeling the bulge of his need nestled right against her abdomen. She wrapped her arms tighter around him, wanting to feel his heart beat against hers. A surge of hot desire spread through and coiled down to between her legs, making her wetter just from his kiss. A knock sounded on the door to her office and broke the spell between them. Aslein jumped out of Toren's arms, her face brushing a feathery, soft wing. She walked over to the window and turned her back to the room, starring out into her garden. Toren stood up and walked over a chair by the lamp in the corner. He looked at Aslein and then sat down. "Come.' Said Aslein; her voice tight with need and sheer frustration, but the authority from her voice ringing in the room.
Prime Minister Clotheion walked in and starred in stark contempt at Toren. He cleared his throat and then walked forward, stopping in front of her majesty's desk. "You highness, I see you're already aware that his lordship is here. I had hoped to discuss with you a matter of urgency, but I think I'll wait until morning to speak with you." Clotheion said; his face a mask of calm. "Whatever you have to say can be said in front of his lordship, he knows not to intrude." She said, her tone brooking no argument from either man. "Well, a few of the higher members of congress have been wondering when the crown prince will start to learn about the governing of this kingdom. As he is almost of age here, he needs to spend all of his time learning how to rule Aballier. We need to have a strong ruler who will not be cowed by other rulers and protect the safety of this kingdom." He said, looking straight at Toren, his hatred barely hidden behind a mask of concern for the kingdom. Aslein turned and starred hard at Clotheion. He was older than her, but he had risen slowly in the political circles before her uncle's death and her ascendance to the throne. He was half human and half fey; his features were plain but his cold black eyes were sharp and ever moving. He always wore simple clothes; the style, cut and material befitting of his station, but without any ornamentation like so many others had. Aslein's face became hard and her eyes were cold as she spoke, "Do not presume to question your majesty!" Clotheion stammered in the face of her majesty's words, the heat creeping fastly up his face. "Your Majesty...I...what I meant was..." Clotheion stammered before being interrupted. "Get out now while you still have your position!" Aslein said, her voice quiet yet strong. Toren stood up as the prime minister walked out fast, closing the doors behind him. He turned back to face Aslein and whatever anger she might have after that discussion. "Aslein, why don't we go for a walk?" Toren asked gently. Aslein looked at him, her eyes troubled, "Sure, I need some fresh air." Aslein walked over to Toren and waited for him to indicate he was ready to leave. Toren took her hand and tucked it into the crook of his arms. He headed to the door and opened it for her, allowing her to go through first. He let go of her arm and watched her walk into the corridor. He smiled as he watched her hips sway seductively through her gown. He looked at her hair, and noticed a stray tendril of hair coming down from the bun her hair was done in. He wanted to kiss her neck where the tendril touched, then reminded himself that she didn't belong to him. Aslein felt Toren's eyes watching her as she moved down the hallway. She smiled more to herself, nodding occasionally as Toren spoke of his brother and how Catheous' training had progressed. As they wandered past an alcove, Toren grabbed Aslein by her waist and hauled her into the darkness. Aslein squeaked and tried to flare out her wings, but felt the solid wall of Toren's chest behind her. She sighed, all the old feelings smacking her in the face, saying to her; you knew we still existed, why resist what's natural? Toren's mouth came down on Aslein's neck and blazed a trail of kisses up to just under her ear. His breath was ragged and short, and when he spoke his voice was gravelly and rough sounding, "I can't even begin to explain why I'm doing this, I just know that if I hadn't pulled you into to here, I would have gone insane watching you walk. I had to do it, it was a primal instinct." Aslein reached her right hand up and back, grabbing his hair with her fingers, the other arm coming to rest atop his around her waist. She leaned her head to the left and felt her hair starting to unravel from the bun she had stuck it in. Her eyes closed on their own accord, her mind a blank slate as she just felt everything around her. Her hand on her waist moved as Toren moved his hand, intertwining their fingers. "Toren, we shouldn't be doing this..." She said breathlessly as his mouth continued to press butterfly kisses on her neck. "I don't care what we should or shouldn't be doing, this feels right." He said in between kisses, his voice a whisper against her skin. Toren moved his mouth over Aslein's skin, the texture soft like silk to his lips. His right hand moved down her hips, feeling along the side. He began pulling her skirts up her thigh, gathering the material up under his wrist until he felt her warm thigh through her stocking. His fingers moved in circles up and down her thigh, getting higher and higher until he reached the edge of her stocking. He traced along the edge, finding the string holding up her stocking from her garter belt. He pulled the ribbon untying her stocking from her garter belt and moved his hand up, feeling her thigh, his fingers nestling in the hair covering her center. Aslein moaned quietly as Toren touched her body with a familiarity she had thought he might have forgotten. She wiggled her hips slightly, her body exposed to the world for all to see if they just peered into the alcove. His left hand reached up and cupped one of her breasts through her dress, squeezing and kneading it. The sound of footsteps came echoing down the hall and Aslein tensed up. Toren listened to see if the footsteps were getting closer and held his hands still over Aslein, his fingers slowly moving away from her heated core. The footsteps stopped far away then continued down the hallway in the opposite direction, Toren smiled to himself and kissed Aslein's neck one last time before letting go of her skirts and wrapping his arms around her waist, calming both of their beating hearts. "Toren, I think it might be dangerous for us to be around each other." Aslein said, slight trepidation in her voice with the sound coming out husky and sexy. "Mmmhmm, but I think we should really talk...after I take you to your room." He said, smiling in the dark at her, his eyes starring down at the expense of cleavage he could see coming out of her dress. "Toren... I'm not sure we should...I mean what if we..." she stammered. Toren spun her around in his arms, his hands wrapping themselves around her waist as he pulled her close and crushed her mouth against his. He savored the kiss, allowing Aslein the chance to refuse him. He felt her push against him at first, but then her hands fisted his shirt, holding him close to her. He pulled back slowly, kissing her nose before setting her back and taking her hand in his. "Aslein, I know this sounds silly, but I was a bit of a fool for what happened." He said as he pulled her out of the alcove and moved towards the main hallway. Aslein starred up into his face as they walked along, noticing that he would not look her directly in the eyes. She saw Freidsona out of the corner of her eye and motioned him over. She stopped Toren and waited for the castle's majordomo to bow. "Freidsona, please have a guest room in the family wing set up for his lordship. Toren, do you have anything that needs to be brought up to the room?" asked Aslein, her eyes dismissing the head servant. "Right away your majesty." "Aslein, my pack is in the stable, I'll go retrieve it." Said Toren as he let go of her hand and stepping away from her. "I will be in the main family room; you can meet me there for our discussion, just head down the hall to the left from your room, it will be the big doors at the end." She said as she walked away and up the main stairs.
Toren watched Aslein for a few minutes as she walked up the stairs. He grinned wolfishly as he watched her hips sway underneath her skirts and knew he would feel the soft skin beneath soon enough. He marveled at how easily old feelings could be remembered and brought to the surface. He walked past a few serving wenches and nodded at them. He heard them giggle and start talking about how he must be one of the queen's current lover. He thought to himself about it as he passed a garden of immense beauty that he would enjoy being with her again. He knew that it must be Aslein's private garden as it had her favorite roses growing everywhere and a single nightshade attached to an oak tree. He stopped and stood in the doorway to the garden, starring at the tree with the deadly nightshade attached to it. The nightshade represented Aslein herself while the oak represented him, he thought. The oak by itself was fine and happy but mixed with the nightshade it thrived for some odd reason. The nightshade plant was considered a poisonous and deadly plant by most, but when handled properly it could be completely harmless. The physical metaphor she had created was evident to him but he doubted too many others would realize what it said. He noticed a small figure moving in the garden to the right and he stepped in, intending to find out who had disturbed the garden's peace. A little boy no older than five was planting a seed in the ground among a bed of moon flowers. His wings were little with feathers at the base spreading into a gossamer web of deep blue. His dark hair had a slight red tint to it and his skin was a golden tone. Toren wondered who the boy was and where his parents had to be, but judging by how fine his clothes were, his parents were mostly members of aristocracy. He approached loudly, wanting to alert the boy but not spook him. The little boy turned around and Toren felt as if he was starring into Aslein's eyes. He knew instantly that this was her youngest son, the one she had with Mikhail Drazon...the dragon lord of Remseia. The little boy eyes grew large and frightened until he heard a young male voice coming from the hall. "Mikhail, are you in there?" Catheous wondered out loud as he walked into his mother's private garden. He stopped short when he saw his father looking down at Mikhail. "What are you doing in here, its way past your bed time...mother sent maids to look for you." The little boy looked at Toren then at Catheous and couldn't decide whether to run or hide. He chose to run to his brother and hid behind his legs, peering around at Toren with a scared look on his face. Catheous looked at his father and smiled, "Father, thank you for detaining him, but may I ask why you are in Mother's private garden?" Toren looked back at Catheous then back at the little boy before answering, "I was heading to the stables," he looked back up at Catheous and smiled, "And I heard a noise coming from in here and when I looked in, there he was, planting some seeds in the moonflower bed for your mother." Catheous turned and picked up Mikhail, holding him in his arms as he walked over to Toren. Catheous looked at the moonflower bed briefly noticing a spot that had a fresh hole covered up and some seeds poking out. He stopped and turned Mikhail so he was looking at Toren, but Mikhail turned his head again, hiding his face. "He's not normally this shy, but it is late," Catheous turned to look at his father and sighed, "I'll see you in the morning father." Catheous said as he turned away to leave. "Be ready at ten for sword practice, Catheous; don't think you can get out it because you're here." Toren said as he waved to the little boy peering at him from his son's shoulder. "See you then father!" Catheous said as he reached the door and waved backwards at his father. Toren smiled and turned to look at the seeds poking out of the ground in the moonflower bed. He bent down and carefully covered them up with more dirt before leaving the garden to go get his bags.