A new direction (Sade)

Some one-thousand years into the future, Feila is now ruled by pop-crazy teenagers, computer nerds, and gun-wielding gangsters. This period is most like our present day Earth, specifically the 2000's, with the Internet, MP3 players, and towering skyscrapers. All natives are furry (Skin Avian are present here too). No native humans.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne shook his head and adamantly disagreed with Freya’s comment on rules, “but don’t you see, a rule is not a rule- a natural law- if it is not fundamental. The very fact that the modern system can be manipulated breaks the modern system. Fundamentally. The whole world I know is built on fallacies and blind, dumb luck that nothing has come along to upset the logic of its foundation. If that logic breaks down, modern civilization collapses into itself.” The apocalyptic language came from his penchant for melodrama, but he felt a spark of truth in it, and it troubled him deeply.

He couldn’t stay despondent for long though. In the past his glower-fests could last for days on end as he mulled over some personal or professional issue, but Freya wasn’t having any of it. What happened next he found difficult to describe, but it was glorious and fantastic and just wonderful. The first time she’d communicated telepathically with him he’d felt violated by the intrusion, and frightened by the thought that his thoughts could be uncovered and his privacy stolen away. Now, though, he was more acclimated to the new truths in his life, and this felt different somehow. It was not a cold threat of retaliation like icy needles in his brain. It was warm, unspoken yet deep and multifaceted, a sensation like burying one’s face in a warm blanket… or a warm bosom. It was enough to make him shudder and gasp, and his whole body tingled.

There would be little doubt at this point of his magical and telepathic potential. The gentle brush of mental contact would have required considerably more concentration to keep “gentle” than expected, so slippery and insistent his subconscious was that it sought to slip past Freya’s defenses like a liquid through the tiniest crack or crevice.

Etienne himself was not aware of that. The whole experience was indescribable, and so he sat in silence for a while, looking at her, panting slightly. “W-what I want…” he stammered. She’d asked that twice before, earlier in the morning, and what had followed… was she doing it on purpose? He couldn’t tell, but it sent thrills dancing through his mind all the same. “I… want many things,” he began, hunger returning to put an edge on his features. His hands went up as if they might return to their new favorite places, but after a moment’s hesitation he pulled them back, rubbing fingers together introspectively. “I want many things,” he began slowly, just a little unhappy but also resolute in his conviction, “but what I want can’t always take a front seat. This,” he indicated the candle, “is not a frivolous pursuit. If I’ve learned anything from my time with you it is that we are all vulnerable to forces beyond the understanding of all but a scarce few, and we cannot trust those few to wield their powers responsibly with the greater good in mind. Such blind faith would be the height of folly.”

The candle would come first, today, and for as long as it took. Only then would he allow himself to turn to selfish desires, like helping Freya make the new memories she wanted. And he wasn’t talking about sex either. She’d been alive for 1200 years or more. Was there anything she had yet to do? Any activity? Any venture? Any sight left unseen? Could Etienne find something truly unique to her experience in the world, something that made her nervous, drove her up the wall, and in doing so turn the tables on the fantastic power she had over him, to share it with her in kind? He could think of no greater gift at the moment- but could it be done? The canine smiled slightly as he stared into the candle. He was Etienne. He would find a way.

“Watch the temperature for me, please,” he instructed, his thoughts translating into the slightest hint of coy slyness in his voice.



Hours passed. Sometimes time seemed to fly by, other moments dragged on at an agonizing crawl. Other than a few minutes taken to nibble some of the leftovers from breakfast midway through the day, Etienne had kept his focus on the candle, trying to trigger something he felt he did not truly have. He could tell himself that he had this capability, but his problem was just as he’d said much earlier in the day: he didn’t believe it. Not really, not when he was completely honest with himself. That part of him which clung to the modern sensibilities and logic of the world was difficult to shake- and wisely so, it had served him so very well for all of his adult life. He was finding it impossible to let go, to take the plunge into the unknown.

The digital thermometer hummed indifference through the whole event. Its readout remained steady, slowly drifting from hour to hour as the temperature of the room changed with the movement of the sun overhead.

Etienne’s nerves were frayed by hours of concentration. At last he leant back away from the unlit and unchanged candle, his body aching as he changed position for the first time in what felt like ages. He sighed and hummed to himself, running a hand through his hair and down the smooth skin of his neck. He grimaced and tilted his head back and forth, working out a kink while he ruminated.

Failure. It was not foreign to him. Some things simply didn’t work out. Machines failed to function. Programs produced undesirable results. Furless canine polymaths occasionally failed to use magic.

He grunted, frowning slightly. Suddenly he looked over to Freya. She’d been by his side the whole time. Her eyes had stayed on the temperature readout, but her attention was split between it and the candle and himself. He could tell. He could feel her watching him sidelong, somehow. Was she waiting for something? For him to light the candle, of course, or was that it? There was something else… but his special new intuition failed here. He could guess what it was, but there was that uncertainty…

The canine stood and stretched out a moment. Then he reached behind the digital thermometer and switched it off. With a click and hum the screen flashed and emptied to blank black. Etienne took Freya’s shoulders and guided her to the couch, not because she needed guidance but for the simple pleasure of touching her. “I need help,” he began after they’d sat down. His eyes were everywhere- her eyes, the floor, her body, the floor again. “I think I could sit in front of that candle for days- weeks- and find myself no closer to success. I’m just not getting it. I just can’t get there. You mentioned something you could do to help… a psychic link?…”

He pulled her close for a kiss. “I-I trust you, Freya… Please help me.”
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Part of Etienne's reaction to the brief mental contact had genuinely surprised Freya, the way his subconscious had tried to slip past her mental defenses. That reaction also had her a little worried in some ways. She recognized the look of hunger that came over his face, and flushed in anticipation of his soft skin against her smooth scales again. She was a little disappointed when his conviction remained strong, though she did admire that it did.

He worried about a truly unique experience for her but what he didn't realize was that, while new and unique experiences would be nice and she would love them, she just wanted to enjoy life, and to have him along for the ride. She smiled and nodded her understanding when he asked her to watch the temperature, and set herself to the task.

As the day went by, with Etienne trying to light the candle, she kept an eye on the thermometer. She also watched Etienne, and paid attention to the ether, feeling for anything that would indicate his manipulation of it.

She knew some time before he decided to call it quits on trying to light the candle that he wasn't going to break down the walls that modern society, science, and education had built that kept him from his abilities, from taking that leap into the unknown.

Her smile was warm and sympathetic when he eventually turned to her. She had been wondering if he was going to take the next step he offered, but at the same time a part of her was terrified of it. She let herself be guided to the couch, finding his touch to be a comfort even as he asked for her help. She believed that he trusted her, but that couldn't completely destroy the bit of nervousness that clung in the back of her mind at sharing what had in the past destroyed relationships, there was also a glimmer of hope that it would go the other way instead, and at this point she wasn't sure which was worse. She took a deep breath before she nodded and spoke. "Okay, here goes." She said as she took hold of his hands, more for comfort than anything else.

The link wasn't quick, she didn't want to just immerse him in an instant. It started with a brush, then she took hold there was almost a mixing of identities as she took hold of his mind and gently pulled the largest part of it into her own. She left enough that his body would live, but at this point there was no consciousness within.

To Etienne it would appear as if he had been pulled onto a plain with green grass, wildflowers, and wide open skies as far as could be seen. At this point, Etienne would be able to know all but the very most deeply sealed things about her, her past, her feelings, almost as if they were his own. There would have been a little detachment because they were not his, but very little.

She appeared before him much as she looked in the physical world, though without clothing, and her scales seemed to be lit from within. *now you see me, truly laid bare before you, there is very little that can be hidden here.* she said quietly, with a shy smile, before she handed him a small glass globe. *come now, feel through me what it feels like to pull from the power within. If you become uncomfortable, and want out, break that globe. It will stop the link and pull you back into your own body, but be prepared for a wicked headache.* She said before she altered the link a bit so that now Etienne would be aware of her, feel as though her body was his own, but without the control.

He would be able to feel the power within her as though it were a vast aquifer flowing just beneath the surface. She then began to draw upon it, to pull it to the surface. She then directed that power out to effect the wick of the candle in the same way she had done before. He would see through her eyes as the wick burst into flame. Through her he would have felt as the currents of ether around them were disturbed as she manipulated her power. She reached out with that same power again to extinguish the candle. She then turned her attention to just feeling the ether, and the currents within. A vast sea of unseen energy flowing all around them as she had tried to explain it to Etienne.

After a few moments, she shifted the link again, bringing Etienne back to the open plain with her in front of him again. *That's how it feels for me when I use my power.* she said with another shy smile. *Now, if you want, and with some effort, I can guide your body through the use of magic.* She waited nervously for his answer, unwilling to just pluck it from him like she easily could within the link.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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The analytic part of Etienne’s mind went into overdrive as he emerged in this new place. It was a new part of Freya, and he was eager to explore it as vigorously as he had her physical form. What were its boundaries? What was its shape? What did it contain? Consciously he was unsure how to navigate- or if it was even possible, if Freya would allow him to explore or if she’d put up walls he couldn’t see. The parts of his mind lurking beneath conscious thought were not bound by these questions and doubts. Tendrils of subconscious thought leapt out in every direction, intent on defining the space around him, but it was truly vast.

Freya was courageous in a way he was not. When he saw that she was nude his hands immediately went to his own torso, feeling for clothes, feeling the acute need to cover himself. His clothes were still there, or at least that is what he was seeing. Was that a bad thing? He did trust Freya, but he wasn’t sure he was ready to lay bare all of his secrets and thoughts the way she had. On the other hand, in this place, he doubted he could keep them from her. She was a master; he hardly even qualified as a student.

He trusted her though, implicitly. He would not have agreed to this mental connection had he not. He knew she would not go behind his back, so to speak, to see what he was thinking.

The magic of this place was draining his tension away. An ocean of rolling green like lazy waves in still-life, rippling greens and splashes of color as vibrant life danced in a gentle breeze beneath wisps of white drifting through endless blue. Wild, calm, peaceful. “How could I feel uncomfortable here?” He mused as she handed him the globe. He turned the object over in his hands, holding it up to his face to take in all of its details. “It is like living in the warmth of an embrace, like an emotion made physical and real.”

Viewing the world through Freya’s senses was like being blind and seeing for the first time. The world was so much more complex, so incredibly multifaceted, with flows of energies coursing through, in, and around everything. He also reveled in certain mundane sensations; the feel of her body breathing, of her heart beating. The view of his own body sitting vacantly beside her was a little unnerving, but he put that out of his mind. And then there were feelings for which he’d never learned words. He could feel Freya doing something, with some sixth or seventh or eighth nameless sense. There was something simple about what she was doing when the candle burst into flames and was snuffed out. It was all so simple, easy, for her, like opening and closing a hand or eyelid.

Freya returned them to the field of green, and asked a question he knew must be coming. That she did not already know the answer reaffirmed the trust he had in her. He could see the uncertainty on her face, and he could feel her nervousness. Literally. It came in fits and starts, but he was sure his mind- or his body- his brain?- was detecting her distress through the aether and relaying it back across the mental link to his consciousness. It was more obvious now that he knew what to look for. Or maybe he had no idea what he was talking about. He wasn’t quite sure yet.

Etienne was silent for a few minutes. He took a deep breath and cast his gaze around the fields before returning it to Freya. He idly brushed his hands along the tops of waist-high wildflowers, gently plucked a particularly vibrant blossom, and, stepping closer to her, threaded it into her hair. “Like a dream,” he murmured, “you, this place… my life over these last few days…”

“I would like that very much. I’ve learned so very much,” he said in answer to her question, “about you and myself. Why stop here? The more guided experience I can get, the greater our chances for success.”



Etienne’s mind was very different from Freya’s in that it did not settle into a coherent landscape, or really anything one could charitably call terrain. The canine was inexperienced in these things. He did not begin to understand how Freya had formed that place within her being. He could feel that he wasn’t alone in his body- to which she’d returned him so he could feel and gain experience from her actions through him. She was there too. He was sure of it. But where was there? He peered through his own eyes. His mind was just… his mind. It was like a closed box as it always had been. His being was… well, what was a ‘being’ anyway? Was it his soul? Had he just taken a stroll through Freya’s soul a moment ago? It was all so metaphysical, so difficult to grasp.

In fact there was a place within Etienne’s mind, but it was a chaotic place built from his thoughts from moment to moment, his memories, bits and fragments of important information. Powerful, old memories- so far as a memory could become ‘old’ in his 28 years- formed large, mostly static bulwarks. Osborne was there, and the Odell Group. The many sights and sounds of business meetings and research labs played like fractured, overlapping video streams, over the foundations of the ideals instilled in him by all he’d learned. Sensibilities taught him as a child of nobility and the logic and science he held so dear lay there as well.

Freya had a powerful presence in this place too, new and dynamic, which seemed to permeate everything and instill it with warmth and light. His mind was full of imagery of her, mostly her eyes, her face, her smile, bits and pieces of memory from the Race, trouncing through airports and canyons and caves, flying in Osborne’s jet, the many cherished uncomfortable moments when she’d said or done something to aggravate him playfully, the sound of her voice and laughter. He was thinking of her even now, doubting and dreaming, wondering what she was doing and when she would do it, and how he would know. He felt alone, out in the physical world. He wanted her to say something so he could know she was there, that everything was okay.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne's subconscious explorations didn't give Freya cause for worry, this was her domain and she was in control, though it did once again confirm her suspicions of Etienne's buried power.

She smiled when Etienne mentioned the feel of emotion made real. "In many ways it is emotion made real." She replied gently.

Freya had been happily flattered by the compliments Etienne paid her while he was within her mindscape, her scales darkened in color, and a heat rose close to the surface. She lifted a hand to the flower and looked at him with eyes filled with affection for him. The feel within her mind reflected it as well. She was relieved, and happy that Etienne was comfortable with the link and that he wanted to continue with her proposed plan of action. A part of her had been quite terrified that Etienne would reject the link and her.

Freya took a completely different approach when it came time to enter Etienne's mind. Her presence was light, and ethereal. She took great care not to disturb anything as she moved through almost like a ghost. In their current state, it would have been easy for Freya to exert her will upon Etienne's mind, and make changes; she might have done it inadvertently if not for centuries of experience and the nature of her abilities giving her absolute control over them. She could have effected changes that would let him tap his power and the ether without her guidance, but it would require her to make changes to the foundations of his thought, and she couldn't bear to change him in any way.

The seemingly chaotic mindscape within him was not a surprise to her, it typically took work and introspection to come close to creating something like Freya had, though she was sure he could if he set himself to it. Even if his mind was chaotic, it was telling. His memories, and the foundations of his thought processes and ideals. After seeing these things, it was easy to see why he had such a hard time grasping magic.

The imagery of herself made her almost feel like a voyeur, though at the same time she felt that warm affection flare up, heat would have spread through her body had she currently been inhabiting it.

In his mind, she finally spoke, though she didn't manifest herself as she had in her own mind, this decision fueled by care, and a desire to not disturb anything within his mind. "I'm here. I'm going to have to nudge you out of the driver's seat as it were." She told him. "I will be as gentle as I can about it, but it may still be a little disorienting." She said as she began her work. She gently nudged Etienne's consciousness aside so she could take control of the conscious actions of his body. He was still within his body, still seeing through his own eyes, and feeling all sensory input. It took some time once she had control to get a feel for what he could do. "Ok, we're going to start slow. "First let's open your senses." She said as she gently shifted his perceptions. It was almost as if seeing for the first time, there was a burst of sensory overload as awareness of the ether flooded in. With that awareness came the awareness of the innate power within Etienne's body as well. The ether wasn't so much something seen as it was felt. To Freya it felt like a gentle pressure with currents moving within, though she couldn't say how Etienne would interpret the sensations.

"Okay, let's see what you can do." She said as she opened Etienne to the power within him. It was not easy, and Etienne would likely feel some effects from it later, almost like working an atrophied muscle. Once she had access to Etienne's power, she began to use it, though it was different than the way she used her own. The well of his power was not as deep as her own so instead of using nothing but power from within, she reached out with a small amount of it. She used that small amount to manipulated the ether. She formed a clear intent, then focused on imposing that intent on the ether she had gathered before she directed it at the candle. The energy formed to her intent, and upon contact with the candle's wick, heated it to the point of combustion. The candle burned for a moment while she gathered another bit of the ether and imposed her intent upon it. This time the candle was snuffed out. She went through this process several times before she could feel Etienne's body tiring from the effort.

"I think that's about all we're going to manage for today." She gently withdrew her control over his body. She lingered a moment, within his mind, conveying again the deep burning affection for him as well as a bright pride.

She slowly withdrew from his mind, settling back into her own body. Her eyelids fluttered a moment before they opened fully and she directed her appreciative gaze on Etienne, and flashed a slightly bashful smile. "Did it help?" She asked as she scooted closer to him. "How do you feel?" she asked, taking hold of his hands again.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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He looked at her. “How do I feel?” In a single smooth motion he twisted his hands to grab her ankles and forced her down on the couch, flat on her back. “Powerful,” he said, grinning fiercely down at her, “as much of an illusion as that is!” Between the two of them, Freya was the superior physical specimen and the master when it came to magic, two facts he had not forgotten. Even so, Etienne could feel the unseen powers coursing through the world around him, and he could push against them and feel those pins and needles racing up and down his spine as they had when Freya used her magic. The furless black canine took in her eyes for a few moments before glancing to the side, considering. “And tired, but not in the conventional sense. I feel sort of stretched out somehow. It is almost like being short of breath, but without the breath.”

Etienne licked the end of her muzzle once and then kissed her, inviting himself into her mouth almost before she had a chance to let him in- which he assumed she would have of course, else he wouldn’t have tried. He toyed with her tongue for a while. Freya might be the master of magic and have the strength to throw him over her shoulder, and also the longer tongue, but here Etienne was the master- or he would be if his own giddy grins weren’t constantly breaking the lock of their lips. “And hungry- ravenous! I haven’t had anything to eat since this morning!” He pronounced gleefully. Of course that was a lie. They’d had some lunch. But then, Etienne wasn’t really talking about that sort of food, was he?

His hands and lips went elsewhere, meandering, exploring. He proceeded to grab at her clothes with his teeth and gave removing them without the use of his hands a real solid try, but hilarity quickly ensued when he managed to drag both of them off the couch and got them both tangled up. He somehow managed to wedge his head and one of his arms in her shirt with her while the collar was hung up on one of her horns. All he could do is flail and laugh. His mind felt stretched and tired from the psionic training, he was exhausted in a way, but he didn’t mind at all. He imagined it was almost like being drunk; he was too tired to worry about inhibitions or feel embarrassment at his momentary clumsiness. And there was something about Freya. He’d had a few short-lived sexual dalliances in the past, years ago, one during his teenage years and another a little later, but there’d been a sordid quality to the whole affair. He’d felt dirty afterward, disgusted with himself. Not so with Freya. She was something special, and once he managed to wrestle his way out of a T-shirt he was going to-

-promptly get his feet caught in her skirt and fall over.

Over the course of the evening Etienne demonstrated that his body was not nearly as tired as his mind. He’d explored her body throughly and diligently in the morning, now he was interested in different ways they could have fun together. Male stamina would normally be a problem save for a characteristic of Etienne’s personality; he liked being in control, and, just as much, he liked giving more than receiving. He was also impressively squirmy and agile. On several occasions he managed to wriggle his way out of her grip into an advantageous position where he could drive her up the wall while avoiding retaliatory ‘distraction,’ watching her all the while, grinning ear to ear- when his mouth wasn’t busy, that is. It was often busy. This was another thing she would learn about him; he liked engaging multiple senses simultaneously, touch, taste, scent… and he hadn’t lied about being hungry!

When they’d finished- or reached a lull, he wasn’t sure yet- they lay across the bed… Etienne’s he thought… or was it Freya’s? He couldn’t quite place where they were, but they were on a bed, laying across rather than lengthwise, with at least some of the covers tangled up nearby. Night had fallen. Etienne’s post-game puppy-dog face had faded to one of deep rumination as he idly licked her muzzle. Night had fallen. He could see the stars through the window, beyond her eyes. His hands slid up her back to her shoulders and pulled her closer. “Did… does magic allow for teleportation?” he asked out of nowhere, “were wizards able to transport themselves from place to place?”
Last edited by Sade on Thu Aug 14, 2014 10:50 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya let out a small squeak of surprise when Etienne grabbed her ankles and pushed her down on her back. Her grin was a sly one as she replied, "you're already more powerful than much of the world's population." She told him softly and nodded as he mentioned being tired. "It's not unusual, it comes with the use of magic, though it will lessen with practice...like building muscle."

The lick on the end of her muzzle didn't catch her completely by surprise, but close enough, and she eagerly locked tongues with him when he kissed her. His announcement of being hungry has what was likely the desired effect as her pulse quickened, and her scales flushed in eager anticipation.

She giggled as Etienne attempted to remove her clothing without using his hands, and was laughing hard when they ended up on the floor in a tangled mess. She had no idea exactly how they had managed the predicament, but wasn't complaining either.

They eventually disentangled themselves, and continued their fun in earnest. Freya continued to be an enthusiastic and boisterous partner, eagerly letting him know what she enjoyed, and just as insatiable as he was. She also proved throughout the night that she was just as willing to give control as she was to take it, at least with Etienne.

As the pair lay across the bed, Freya was breathing deeply as she stretched her arms out above her head, her eyes lidded in content satisfaction. She wore a small grin as his tongue brushed across her muzzle. She watched the stars through the window until he pulled her closer. Her smile was soft and genuine as she met his eyes, though his question was not quite what she had expected.

"There were, and are ways..." She replied slowly. "Though they take great amounts of energy, and the most refined control, and even then can be very dangerous, especially if you don't know the area you're trying to get to very well. The other ways involve devices that have long been destroyed." She paused for a moment. "why do you ask?" She asked with some curiosity.
Last edited by Asyriel on Tue Aug 12, 2014 6:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne nodded at the window. Nantes was rising, a luminous red speck half as bright as the full moon, hanging over the ocean. “I wonder if anyone ever tried to go there. The sky is full of places; planets, moons, the stars. They must have realized this, some of them.” He paused, “granted most of the naked-eye planets are gas giants with no ground to stand on, and even if they’d somehow known about the moons without access to a telescope the radiation there would have killed them almost immediately, before even the lack of atmospheric pressure and oxygen… but we know so much more than they did about what is out there and how to survive it. Edwin finally reached Nantes with a probe back in the 90’s, after a slingshot out of the plain of the ecliptic with help from Atalfa’s gravity. It is a brown dwarf, Nantes- a failed star- but its system of moons is like a solar system cast in miniature…”

He blushed when he realized he was rambling. “Anyway…” Nantes had meant different things to different cultures throughout history, he recalled, but it had always been prominent thanks to its size, brightness, and color. To some it was a god of war. To others; a symbol of romance, love, or passion. “Someday I’ll take you there, one way or another. Rocketry… magic… a mix of the two… I’m sure a hundred, hundred fifty years from now we will have spread all throughout the solar system. Habitats and colonies of glass and steel hanging like diamonds in the sky…” The way his eyes glinted, one could almost see through him to the world he was envisioning. It was a new-found optimism. The future looked brighter when Freya was a part of it.

He pulled her closer, squeezed her shoulders, sighed contentedly.



He felt rested, if not fully rejuvenated, the following morning. He’d slept soundly and deeply, but so much fun had left little time for sleeping, and as usual he woke almost precisely at 6:30 AM as he always did, no matter how late he got to bed, no matter what timezone he was in. It was annoying in a small way. Living a life of schedules and tight timelines had trained his body well. Momentary concern at the presence of another person under the covers with him turned to giddy delight when the memories of the previous night flooded back. He was still in… Freya’s room, he decided it had to be. She was there too, still asleep.

The canine carefully disentangled himself and went about silently making the bed with her still in it. Sure, housekeeping would be by eventually, but he was fastidious about tidiness. One could not work in labs and not be so. He also thought Freya would find it amusing to wake up tucked into a made bed. Once that was taken care of he returned to his own room, to his shower, cleaned up, went about his daily rituals, and retrieved his clothes from the common room.

The candle was there, waiting for him, as it had been for the past 24 hours. The digital thermometer was also were he’d last left it, still on its cart aimed at the candle. He did not turn it on. He’d been convinced that there was a technological solution to this conundrum even after he thought he’d opened his mind up to other possibilities. It took the surreal experience of connecting his mind to Freya, occupying her body, having her control his, to finally, at last, break the strangle hold of his modern, technological sensibilities. They did not have digital laser thermometers a thousand years ago! His prejudices had led him in the wrong direction from the very beginning.

Etienne knelt on the floor near the candle as he had before. He took slow, measured breathes to calm his nerves. He cleared his mind and quelled his doubts. He concentrated until he could feel the tingling of thaumatic currents drifting over and through his body in their courses from wherever they came from to wherever they were going. He pushed against them, struggling to mimic what Freya had done. He could feel ethereal currents against his body, but he could not really see them, and he couldn’t accurately tell what they were doing or where they were beyond about a foot from his skin, as Freya could. He muddled through the mental motions, groping blindly.

A momentary distraction- he sensed that Freya was awake- he accidentally twisted the ether here instead of there, and he saw… smoke. For just a moment. A line of smoke rising from the wick. The effort and concentration was pushing back now, hitting him hard in the head and gut, but he wanted to shout out and jump up and down all the same. Instead he controlled himself. He flashed a grin and drummed his fingers rapidly on the table a few moments. He had done something he’d known to be impossible just a week ago. The smoke was incontrovertible; there was no scientific explanation for a mundane candle sitting in a hotel room to spontaneously smolder.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya smiled as she watched the stars with Etienne, and listened to his 'rambling' as he thought it. She enjoyed hearing his thoughts of going to the distant celestial bodies. "It wouldn't surprise me if somebody had tried at some point, but it's not likely they made it back to tell the tale if they succeeded. To travel that far on magic would have had a nearly equivalent drain on resources and energy as it would to go with technology today." she mused

Etienne's 'anyway' brought her attention back solely on him. "It would certainly be a new experience." She admitted, smiling as she saw him envisioning the world he described. "technology is likely to get there first." She said before he pulled her close. She snuggled in next to him before drifting into sleep's embrace.

She woke the next morning to find the bed made around her. She briefly wondered if housekeeping had been through and played a bad joke on her because she could have sworn the bed was rather a mess the night before. She shook her head and chuckled as she felt the disturbances Eteinne was creating in the ether, and figured he was the more likely cause of the bed being made up around her. She had to admit that she was a little disappointed that he had already left both the bed and the room, but she couldn't hold it against him. She rubbed at her eyes as she slid out of bed. Once her feet were on the floor and she was upright, she stretched up on her toes with her arms above her head. The stretch of course, elicited a yawn.

She headed into her own shower to clean up. She took her time washing her hair and scales, enjoying the relaxing feel of hot water coursing over her body. She used floral shampoo, and body wash, and even found some moisturizing cream in the same scent which she worked into her scales. She was pleased with the end results, the cream leaving her scales soft with a nice sheen on them. She left her hair unbound and it cascaded freely down her back.

She stepped back into the bedroom, briefly debating over the bathrobe before dismissing it and heading into the common room to find Etienne. She of course found him already washed and dressed and kneeling in front of that candle again. She took him in silently for a few moments, admiring his physical form, the silky hair, and soft dark skin as well as his determination and conviction. She approached him from behind, and put her arms over his shoulders, and leaned into and over him so their muzzles met, though hers was decidedly upside down. "Morning. How you feeling?" She asked once the broke their kiss. "How does a change of venue for today sound?" She asked as she straightened. "Find a secluded beach, maybe play in the water a bit." Her last statement actually had three meanings. Enjoying the water, Enjoying each other in the water, and seeing what the water had to offer in the way of magical experiences. She wasn't sure if he would catch all three off the bat, but she grinned as she sat down on the nearby couch to see just how quick he did.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne was so caught up in his experimentation with the candle that he neither noticed her enter the room nor how she’d moved up behind him. He was startled and flustered by her touch, and also her choice of clothing. Her question elicited a rapid stammered “I- you- good-“ which was thankfully cut short by a kiss. He would have used the time to gather his thoughts, but he was too busy enjoying the moment. So he gathered his thoughts after the kiss ended… which meant he had time to notice something else. “You look radiant this morning,” he commented softly. He couldn’t think of an eloquent way to say ‘you smell nice too’ without sounding like an idiot.

“Wait!” he barked as the events of the past half-an-hour flooded back, “wait! I want to show you something!” He slid over so she could see the candle and he bore down into it as he had before, reaching clumsily into the ether flowing around him and it. “Wait…” nothing was happening. How did he do it before? “Wait…” Concentrating was proving so much harder now that a beautiful nude dragoness was standing two feet away. At last the wick smoldered and cast out its loose coils of smoke. This surprised him and broke his concentration just as it had the first time, but again, the smoke was enough for now. “I still can’t bring myself to believe it. Yet, there it is,” he waved a hand at the streamer of smoke, wafting it away, “I keep expecting to wake up, again.”

Freya mentioned going to the beach. The canine didn’t have to do any real work to catch one of Freya’s meanings- she was lounging naked on the couch; his imagination raced to that meaning in zero seconds flat. The analytical part of his mind worked out the equation. Freya, plus naked, plus water, equals fun! He wondered briefly whether he was being overoptimistic. Something in her expression told him he was not. This was just about the first time he’d felt excited about going to a beach! He usually avoided hours of exposure to sun and sand and deep salty water. Speaking of sun…

Etienne stood and strode over to the telephone. “Room service,” he said with the usual brisk rhythm, “I need sunscreen… sunscreen… skin cream which blocks ultraviolet radiation… to prevent sunburn…” he shifted his weight from one foot to the other, rolling his eyes extravagantly, “sunburn; damage to the skin caused by ultraviolet radiation… well we don’t all have fur now do we?… Alright, thank you. Have it here in five minutes.” He hung up the phone, turned back to her. He could restrain himself for five minutes, right?

Room service showed up in just under two minutes, which meant the service person must have been very motivated, enough so to jog the whole way. Perhaps it was Etienne’s generous tip. Or, more likely given that this was the same feline from the last two times, he was here for another reason. Etienne toyed with him, leaning just slightly in one direction and another to block his view as he tried to inconspicuously peer around him. “Do you have the sunscreen?” He asked innocently, suppressing a grin at the feline’s poorly-concealed frustration. The canine took possession of the tube, “thank you. I appreciate the speedy service.” And he shut the door almost in the feline’s face. The man should have had enough sense to step back! Clearly he had trouble thinking in these, ‘strenuous’ circumstances.

A few minutes later he had his swim shorts on and a beach towel folded over one shoulder. He would wait until they reached the beach to put the sunscreen on because, well, that is how it was done, right? Etienne was most definitely not an itinerate beach-goer. He had no idea what he was doing. By now the thought that water could be a useful medium for practicing magic had occurred to him, but he didn’t want to bring it up. He wasn’t sure whether Freya wanted to work on magic or just relax on a beach, and he didn’t want to push the subject. This was a vacation after all, or it was supposed to be! Anyway, he was more concerned right then about whether Freya would change into her bikini, and how long it would stay on after they reached the beach.

And sharks and stingrays and jellyfish and rip currents. Magic was a close sixth on the list. He suggested she lead the way, having no experience choosing good beaches himself, let alone secluded beaches. Or swimming.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya smiled a warm and genuine smile when Etienne complimented her on how she looked. "Thank you." She replied softly. Her smile grew as she caught his thoughts about her scent. She had been about to reply when he exclaimed for her to wait with enough urgency to stop her in her tracks.

She watched with great interest, and more than just her vision as Etienne tried to light the candle again. This time she could feel him working with the ether, pushing against the natural currents, and shaping it. She grinned enthusiastically as she watched and actually jumped in the air at one point as she watched the streamer of smoke drift off of the candle wick "Wonderful! Congratulations!" She said as she wrapped him in an embrace and gave him a quick kiss. "Just remember, it's all about shaping the energy to your intent." She told him, hoping it was at least somewhat helpful advice.

She grinned at Etienne's conversation on the phone, and even giggled when he rolled his eyes. She could imagine how the other end of the conversation was going. She wasn't surprised to see the same feline that had provided for them the day before. She laughed silently to herself as she watched the feline try to get a look at her, and Etienne blocking his view every time. Of course Freya could be a relentless tease at times, and it was this that led her to stick one shapely leg out enough that the feline could get a bit of a peek, though it was far less than he wanted to see. She burst out in full laughter after Etienne had shut the door. "the look on his face was priceless." She commented through the laughter.

While Etienne got ready to head for the beach, Freya did the same. She found her bikini, and slipped that on before finding her skirt and t-shirt and putting them on as well. She put on the extra clothing not to keep Etienne from looking, but more to mitigate some of the staring from other males they were bound to pass on their way to their destination. She got the impression from the encounter at the door that he wouldn't appreciate the kind of staring she was likely to receive.

She smiled as she grabbed her own towel, then Etienne's hand, and led the way through the resort hallways, and eventually down to the lobby. The resort had a shuttle service, though the shuttles were luxuriously appointed cars that bordered on being limos. One of the cars was brought around for them in a timely manner, and Freya whispered something to the driver before she climbed into the vehicle next to Etienne. She had a very specific beach in mind, but wanted it to be a surprise to Etienne.

The drive was a little longer than one would expect for going to the beach at a beach side resort, and there was no actual beach to be found when they eventually stopped, just thick dense jungle. Freya got out of the car, and waited for Etienne before waving to the driver as he drove off, shaking his head as he went. Freya grinned at Etienne, looking him over for a moment before commenting. "you look good in those shorts." She did enjoy the sight of Etienne's skin, and the shorts definitely gave her more to look at than the pants had.

"I know you didn't exactly enjoy our last flight, but if you'll indulge me, I think you'll find it worth it." She said quietly into one of his ears before she wrapped her arms around him. She squatted down a bit as she spread her wings then launched them into the air. The flight wasn't long, but the view from above made it obvious that it would be difficult to get where they were going from the ground. They eventually circled above a large hole in the jungle that housed a beautiful azure pool that was as smooth as glass with a small strip of beach. the pool and it's beach were probably a hundred yards or so inland from the actual coastline. "the view from above is absolutely incomparable." She commented as she circled the pool, and the cave that housed it. She brought them down lightly in the sand, and let Etienne go as soon as she was sure he had his legs under him. They were the only ones on the beach, and the sand actually went up a fair distance under overhanging stone to create a nice intimate shady area further back into the cavern. "I think this is sufficiently secluded." as she spread her wings and stretched before laying her towel out in the sand and removing all of her clothing.

She headed toward the water, speaking as she did. "I figured while we were out here we could enjoy ourselves, and maybe try working with water a bit." as she spoke, she stepped out onto the water, the surface depressing under her feet, but not breaking to let her sink. Once she was out where the water was deep, she let go of the magic that held her on the water's surface, and she plunged into the water itself. "what do you say?" She asked when she surfaced.

She swam to the shore and climbed out of the water; it glistened as it cascaded down her body, and droplets clung stubbornly to her scales when they were too small to be dragged down by gravity. "First though, I think I want to be the one to apply that sunscreen." She said in sultry tones.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne was used to being surrounded by luxury and various kinds of extravagance, but it had always been for the sake of others. He often found himself at high-end resorts, exhibition centers, penthouse suites, because these are places Osborne often found himself during this or that business meeting or in arranging this or that deal. It felt strange sitting in the luxury sedan- knowing that this and the rest of their resort accommodations probably constituted an investment of millions of dollars- and knowing that he and Freya were the focus of the service staffs’ attention. It was much harder to fade safely into the background without any titans of industry present to suck up attention. He felt… out of place.

The canine’s eyes remained in near-constant motion as he watched their progress down the road in what appeared to be the wrong direction. He liked observing things, noting details, calling up what he knew about their surroundings and obscure, irrelevant facts. A lot of what he was seeing was new though. Occasionally he offered a factoid about the construction of the road or the history of beach-going, but otherwise he travelled in silence. He absentmindedly played with the pleats of Freya’s skirt as he observed the world outside. He blushed when he realized what he was doing, but he didn’t stop, continuing to tug at the fabric and fold it over and over between his fingers. Any excuse to touch her.

Their destination brought puzzlement. “I am no expert,” he said flatly, “but I am pretty sure that this is not a beach.” The canine’s blush deepened at her comment about his shorts. He thought the style was pretty terrible, but that wasn’t the problem. “I feel naked trouncing around in shorts and nothing else. I imagine it is less of a problem for people with fur.”

And then Freya said the word ‘flight’ and the canine’s naked ears folded back. Oh yes, she was absolutely correct. He hadn’t enjoyed their last flight at all… well… there had been one thing he liked about it. He smiled happily as she wrapped her arms around him. He could see their mutual shadow spread to either side as her wings unfurled, “I did enjoy part of it…” He thrilled at the sensation of her body pressed against his for that moment, as he had even back then. And then they were airborne, and very quickly they passed that threshold where a fall would probably kill him. “This is not that part!” Jungle passed below. He did not doubt Freya’s strength, and yet he couldn’t help but calculate the ballistic trajectory from his current position to the ground over and over and see in his mind the results of hitting this tree or that boulder or what-have-you.

Reaching the Azure pool he was taken aback by the beauty of it. It was pristine, secluded, the water was calm and clear. He could visualize how it had formed, a combination of a cove causing a sinkhole connecting to the ocean. It was almost enough to counter the fact that they were now much higher off the ground over a gaping hole in the earth. The dragoness mentioned the view. Etienne peered down past his dangling feet. “I like the kinds of views where my feet are on the ground!” he shouted insistently, though with a hint of humor coming through. This wasn’t entirely terrible.

Any excuse to touch her.

The flight had riled him all up, heart pounding, adrenaline flowing. He twisted his head around to try to look back at her as they came in for a landing, and he was immediately struck by the sight of her there behind and above him, wings flaring to catch the air in their dramatic downstroke as she waited for him to gain his footing. For an instant she had that draconic quality to her; powerful, viscerally predatory, but with those curves and those eyes, that body, that mind. Etienne just stood there, staring at her as she landed. He watched intently as she took off all of her clothes, blushing fiercely all the while, thinking incoherent lustful thoughts.

He followed her eagerly and silently to the waterline only to watch and wait intently, and then back away as she came to shore. Equal parts exhilaration and nervous trepidation played over his features and left him sort of hovering a certain distance away from her. He wanted to lick each and every droplet from her scales, but at the same time there was that hesitation he always felt in the face of Freya’s overwhelming sexuality. Would he ever feel totally comfortable with her? He sincerely hoped not. He wanted the newness and excitement to last forever. He felt alive in a way he hadn’t before the vacation.

“S-sunscreen?” Etienne realized he was tenting his swim shorts in a big way. He moved his towel in front of his waist. “Oh,” his thoughts clicked into place. He glanced over to the tube of sunscreen and sidestepped over to it. By now his face and ears were almost midnight black. Between his blushing and his other reaction to Freya it was a miracle there was any blood left for his brain, or so he thought whimsically. “Oh,” he said again, picking the tube up and offering it to her- from ten feet away. Obviously that wouldn’t work. He tried and failed a confident stride which turned immediately into a stumbling skitter when he almost tripped on his towel, but he got there, and he put the tube in Freya’s hand.

“The instructions say to apply a thin layer evenly over any exposed skin,” the words sounded innocuous and clinical enough in his voice, so why was Freya smiling like that? The canine took a step back, but this time he did manage to trip himself up and he fell back into the sand with an “umph.”
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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"Yes, sunscreen." Freya replied with a wide grin, and a small giggle as she took a step onto the dry sand in front of Etienne. She looked down and her grin widened as she noticed his excitement. She tried not to giggle as he noticed it as well, and made efforts to cover it, which only served to bring more attention. She enjoyed Etienne's enthusiasm, and even more that she was the source of it. She relished in that fact as he picked up the tube, and offered it from a distance.

She waited patiently, and watched while he made his way over to hand it to her. She could almost see the wheels turning in his head as he told her the instructions, and realized that this was about more than just putting on sunscreen. He took a step back, and tripped himself. As he fell into the sand, her grin turned absolutely predatory. Her tail lashed back and forth a couple times as she squatted down a bit, then launched herself at him. She descended upon him quickly and with some force, though it was nowhere near full force, just enough to let him know that she was planning to be in charge. As she landed on him, she also wrapped her jaws around the side of his neck, though there was very little pressure. She released the bite on his neck after a couple moments in favor of drawing her tongue up it instead, before giving him a kiss.

When she broke the kiss, she again wore a wide predatory grin as she dropped her hips down right on top of his, then sat back and wiggled them as if getting comfortable on the thin cloth that separated them. "Now for that sunscreen." She said as she squeezed a generous amount into one hand. She rubbed her hands together before placing them on his chest. The sunscreen allowed her hands to glide across his smooth skin as she moved them up and down his torso. She worked the sunscreen into his skin slowly, enjoying the feel of his skin and body beneath her hands. Her caress was gentle, and slow, often taking on the quality of a massage as she found small knots here and there. She didn't neglect any area of his torso or arms, except what was in contact with the ground; she even gently rubbed the sunscreen into the skin of his face and muzzle.

When she finished with his torso, she put a hand down on his thigh to keep him in place as she flipped over so that she could tend to his legs. She scooted herself to where her hips were now over his stomach, just out of reach as she clamped his arms tight to his body with her thighs. She leaned forward, and lifted her tail a bit as she began again to work the sunscreen into his skin. She continued to work slowly and methodically, starting high on his thighs, and working down to his feet.

She eventually finished her work on the front half of his body, and frowned for a moment before she grabbed his towel from him, and laid it out next to them. She grinned before rolling him over onto his stomach on the towel so she could work on his back. She once again situated her hips over his own, and began to rub the sunscreen into this skin of his back. This very quickly did turn into a massage, she worked out kinks and knots with an expert hand, finding knots that even Etienne had likely never noticed.

When she was finished, she leaned back a bit, and admired his buttocks for a few moments while she toyed with his tail a bit. She eventually lifted herself from him, and sat down next to him. She sat with her hands planted behind her, and leaning on them while were flat on the ground, leaving her knees bent at about a ninety degree angle. "Well, I do believe I got every bit of exposed skin and maybe some extra." She said with a grin as she enjoyed her view. "would you like to work on some magic now, or maybe just relax a bit....or maybe you have something else in mind?" she asked as she dug her toes into the soft sand, and wiggled them a bit. while she talked, the end of her tail swished back and forth a bit, her grin taking on a very mischievous demeanor that said if Etienne took too long in deciding, she was going to make the decision for him.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Etienne recoiled from Freya’s widening grin as if from a physical blow. His eyes widened and he scrambled back as she coiled, blurting “no no no!” And then an incoherent “gah!” as she dove into him and thumped him flat on his back. There was a brief scramble to keep her fangs away from his neck, but she was so strong! She’d been so pliable yesterday, so soft and yielding, but it had all been an act- an illusion! He’d known this then, but he’d never appreciated just how strong she really was. His hands found purchase on her horns but frantic tugging only sapped his strength, and soon enough she’d pinned him against the sand. For a few moments he lay there, heart pounding, and then he shuddered as she ran her tongue up his neck and locked lips with him. It was a long tongue, she had. He almost choked on it.

After the kiss he lay there panting, but the excitement was far from over. His face tightened, he grunted and then moaned despite himself as she made herself comfortable on his lap. The swim suit might as well have not been there for all that he could feel through the thin synthetic fabric! This was torture most foul- the best possible kind! He shuddered at the feel of her hands gliding where they may, caressing skin, kneading muscle tightened by years of work in high-stress situations. The thought brought a laugh. ‘High-stress situations.’ He was pinned under a dragon. And she kept moving. The inevitable side-effect of her roving hands was that she kept shifting position on her ‘seat,’ sending him shivering and shuttering.

His eyes had been shut through most of it. When she touched his face they opened and he beamed up at her. Etienne looked nervous. And tense. And pent up- hugely so. But the gaze was also full of warmth. Affection filled his eyes and mind… And then Freya turned tail, and Etienne had a much different view. He squirmed with all his might trying to free his arms so he could play with her and do some kneading and caressing of his own. Failing that he leant forward the little bit he could manage and flicked out with his tongue, but again she was tantalizingly, agonizingly, just- barely- out- of- reach. He was forced to just lay there, swimming in desire, panting up at her.

Etienne moved as quickly as he could the moment she loosened her grip, lurching at her with a growl- but he was too slow, and before he knew it she’d flipped him onto his stomach and pinned him down between her legs. He couldn’t do anything now, not flat on his front like this, other than tilting his own hips slightly to shift some of the weight off of his crotch. The massage felt wonderful. He thought idly through the lustful haze in his head that she must have done this before. Probably many times… with many others. He didn’t care. It was hard to have any care in the world after this sort of treatment! He protested loudly when she started playing with his tail, and he proceeded to wag it back and forth as quickly as he could. Like most canine’s his tail was not particularly prehensile, or prehensile at all really, so all he could do was try to whap her in the face with it. This did not have the desired effect- the teasing only intensified!

And then, finally, it was over. The massage left Etienne like a lump of putty. He lay blissful and unmoving on the towel as his mind raced to catch up with everything that had just happened. Having all the tension worked out of his muscles just made another tension all the more acute. “Such- cruelty,” he managed in response to her question, pushing haphazardly off from the towel and swaying a moment. He felt all loose and rubbery. He wasn’t used to it.

Perched on his knees and facing her as he was, the fact that he remained as-much-or-more ‘enthusiastic’ about Freya as before was obvious. “This is supposed to be a vacation,” he suggested. He didn’t say what was on his mind, but that smoldering, hungry expression darkening his features made it pretty clear.

Etienne made a show of slowly removing his swim shorts, his previous self-consciousness forgotten. He slid them down, twisting his hips back and forth, taking his own sweet time. He finally rocked back onto his back, legs in the air, to work the shorts off and he flicked them with a finger off into the sand somewhere. He turned over, pushed up to his feet and came over to her, knelt back down, grabbed her shoulders. He was unsure whether she was still in charge of the situation. She was giving him precious little indication one way or another. His hands moved to the sand either side of her and he proceeded to do just what he had thought to do earlier- with his tongue and lips he began licking and kissing anywhere he saw water clinging stubbornly to scales. Some places he licked and kissed just because they were there. His mouth was positioned over her upper torso, after all, where he could nuzzle, lick, suckle and nip at his favorite features.

He kept maneuvering. One of her knees was in the way. With uncharacteristic grace comprised mostly of luck he managed to hop his own legs over her knee without moving his head or breaking contact between muzzle and scales- or dropping his crotch onto her knee. He moved forward, pulled back to look into her eyes. He was poised over her now, in more ways then one. “-Unless you want to do something else,” he finished an unspoken sentence aloud. “-your vacation as much as mine-". He was slowly bearing down on her. What he wanted was exceedingly obvious. “-shot you in the arm after all-“ a hand traced lightly where the wound had been. He ran his hands through her hair and then took her hands out from under her, dropping her onto the sand, sliding his around to hold her tight in a passionate embrace, kissing here and there. He lay flat on top of her running fingers up and down the arc of her back, locking lips in a vigorously enthusiastic kiss. “-I want to do what you want to do-“ he managed to gasp, and then; “-what do you want to do?”
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

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Freya's reply to Etienne's initial response to her question was to simply flash a toothy grin. She knew she could be a horrible tease at times, and didn't deny the possibility of a cruel streak, but she wasn't so cruel that she would outright deny him after what she'd just done. Her grin widened as his enthusiasm remained obvious. She had worked herself up quite a bit in the process of teasing him, and now she was anticipating the end results.

She cheered enthusiastically, and even made a couple cat calls while Etienne gave her an impromptu and entertaining, if slightly quick strip tease. She thoroughly enjoyed the show, leaning back a bit at one point to get a better view. There was little mystery in her reaction when his tongue came into contact with her body as to just how worked up she had gotten between giving him a massage, and his stripping. She leaned her head back with a soft moan, and closed eyes as she let him roam as he pleased.

Etienne spoke, and brought her attention back into focus as she lifted her head to look into his eyes with a warm and pleased affection, and no small amount of lust mixed in. His movements, and kisses only served to excite her more as he spoke. He kissed her, and after some time broke it to ask her a question. It took her a moment to realize that he had asked her something, and another for her mind to fight through the kiss caused haze to comprehend it and come up with an answer. In response to his question, she wrapped her arms around him, and her legs around his hips, and pulled him into her. She raised her head so that her mouth was next to an ear before she spoke softly into it. "I think we both want the same thing at the moment.." She said, squeezing him tighter to her to emphasize her statement as she made it.

Time was passed in what was quickly becoming one of her favorite ways to pass time with the furless canine, and she proved to be just as enthusiastic as any other time. She did make a point though of making sure that they ended up in the water at some point during their activities, even if it was shallower waters. The water offered its own unique forms of fun buoyancy gave their bodies a near weightless quality that afforded for different types of experimentation, and Freya at one point had shown Etienne just how long she could hold her breath, which was longer than one would expect.

After they had both been satiated for the time being, she laid in the shallow water next to Etienne, idly playing with the water droplets that still adorned his chest. She reached out with small amounts of her power to stretch the droplets, then pull them along over his skin till they met another droplet, and the two combined, and she would repeat the process again.

"You said you took exception with some of the things your parents did in raising you..." She started speaking, though much of her attention was still on Etienne's body. She admired it appreciatively as she directed the water she had gathered to trace the lines of his abs. "what would you do if you had children of your own? How would you raise them?" She asked more out of idle curiosity than anything.
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Re: A new direction (Sade)

Post by Sade »

The canine was always surprised to see Freya admiring his body. She was incredibly attractive, and he loved exploring her every scale, but him? He was just Etienne. It was true that he was physically fit, but to him this came naturally from maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Being attractive in this way was not something he’d really prioritized- not consciously anyway. It was puzzling to him. When he looked in the mirror all he saw was Etienne. Looking at him, Freya seemed to see more. She’d certainly seen more of him in one sense lately, particularly during their activities in the surf. She could hold her breath for a very, very long time. He was far too distracted at the time to think about that, though. He’d barely managed to keep his head above the water. The threat of drowning had never felt so good!

Now he watched with rapt attention as she drew and played the droplets of water across his chest. This was something else most furs would never experience- fur would make it impossible. He was totally drawn in by the spectacle both because of its supernatural nature and the fact that it paradoxically looked so natural, so organic, like video of flowing water played in reverse. The water droplets seemed almost alive, chasing her fingers here and there, joining with their brethren. It also happened to feel wonderful. He had to work to keep from shivering; he didn’t want to undo her work.

Freya’s question came out of left field. Etienne thought for a moment- but not a long one. This was a conversation he had had with himself many times, years ago. It came back easily to him. “I would make sure they had the freedom to choose,” he said. “I would make sure they knew that they could do and be anything they wanted; that they were not bound to society’s expectations of them, or mine; that their futures had not been preordained- their course through life had not already been set. I would give them as much or as little guidance as they wanted, I would help them to follow my path if that is what they wanted, and support their endeavors unconditionally and to the best of my abilities if they did not.” His face gradually clouded as he ruminated on these things. An old pain was tied up in the subject, a festering, unhealed emotional wound. “And I would make sure they knew that I loved them. I would say it. Aloud. I would not leave it unsaid for years and years until it was too late… until the gulf I’d built between us felt too wide for us to cross…”

He blinked away the moisture in his eyes and idly took her hand in his, gently turning it over to massage her palm, tracing the outlines of her fingers and imaginary patterns in her scales. His deep fascination in her every minute detail hadn’t diminished. There was so much to see and feel, so much to appreciate, so much beauty here. “I suppose I can thank my parents for my childhood. In doing so many things wrong, they taught me how not to be a parent… though, I’m sure there is more to it. My impression is that children will always behave unreasonably at some point, whether they mean to or not. There were times I craved drama and acted out in complaint of non-issues after I’d blown them out of proportion. I suppose parenthood doesn’t come with a manual…”

Etienne felt compelled to ask her the same question in turn, but this immediately begged a different question entirely, one which he did not particularly want to ask. He held on to it for a few minutes, taking the time to enjoy the view around them; the azure water, the pristine sand, the startling brightness of the blue sky framed within the cliffs forming this private little paradise. Eventually he rolled over in the surf to face her, “Freya, you have been alive for a very long time. When you mentioned Gavin yesterday…” he dropped that thought, started over, cut to the point, “have you ever had children?… Do you have children? They would still be alive now, wouldn’t they?”
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