Faulke loved every minute he spent with Asha, she was so unlike any of the girls he’d grown up with but one of the best things was also one of the worst. Her fierce independence made her interesting and challenging but it also made her argumentative, difficult and sometimes completely impossible to reason with.
Times where difficult, she was often distracted and the stress of needing to complete the lords spell weighed heavily on the girl he loved. She often spoke of the lord, she held no like for him and yet she was torn, between the desires to do what was right and fair against the need to protect the ones she loved.
Truthfully he did not understand why she bowed and scraped to him, she was so powerful and yet in his presence she often seemed cowed. On the outside Asha seemed confident and fiery but as he got to know her the more he realised, inside she was like all young woman, scared and in need of a man to protect her.
Tonight was the first time in several weeks that she did not seem distracted and enjoying the rarity that he had her full attention he’d allowed the heat in her chambers to build to a level he would not normally allow. He knew he should pull away before things went too far but tonight he just did not seem to have the willpower to do so.
He loved her and it felt natural and right, that he was close to her and yet as he Let her slip her hand inside his trousers a wave of guilt crossed his mind.
It wasn’t the first time he’d allowed her to express her desires in such a way, nor was it the first time he’d felt guilty for it.
He usually justified the inappropriate physical contact by telling himself that he did intend to marry her. He intended to marry her the moment Lord Hamdun… and of course Asha allowed it, therefore perhaps it wasn’t as wrong as it sometimes felt.
Asha usually led the escalation in these encounters and while he knew his mother would be gravely disappointed if she knew. The young girl herself did not seem concerned with what was right or proper. Truly she was in many ways a creature of instinct far more than a creature of thought and perhaps that was why he found her so truly fascinating.
“We should stop” he reasoned without conviction, she didn’t answer but instead just made a little sound, that indicated she had no intention of stopping.
A second wave of guilt washed over him, “I love you” he whispered, meaning every word with every fibre of his being.
“Hush” she insisted, kissing him eagerly enough to force him quiet. She never returned his words, sometimes he wondered if she simply didn’t know how to say them or if perhaps she could not return what she did not feel. It bothered him more and more each day, he just wanted to know she loved him, that her delay in marrying him what not because she had doubts.
A knock at the door however suddenly stopped her in tracks.
“Saved” he chuckled, half relieved and half disappointed. Watching as she sighed heavily and climbed from the bed. Recovering a little of his dignity he tucked himself back in.
“I didn’t say ye could put yourself away” she grinned wickedly without so much as in inch of shame. .
“Answer the door” he smiled. Watching as she did just that, but as the door opened it was not who either of them expected.
“Did you do it?” the blond woman he recognised as the lords mistress asked, her face tear streaked her voice almost hysterical.
“My daughter…Gayle, did you do it…. With him, did you put his child into her belly?” she demanded.
For the longest moment Asha didn’t answer. She just stood there stunned.
“Did you?” the woman pressed again. He could see the flurry of emotion on the womans face, fear and anger hurt and desperation all in equal measures.
“No… no I didn’t” Asha finally replied.
“But he asked you too?!” the woman demanded again not letting up for a moment.
“Aye he did”
“But you didn’t?”
“No” she shook her head, seeming clearly shaken “I couldn’t, im sorry … I couldn’t”
“Oh thank heavens” the blond woman gasped half tripping half collapsing under the relief of it all. “Thankyou”
“Yer welcome” Asha nodded, though the words seemed lost as though she didn’t really feel like she deserved to be thanked.
“I am sorry. I’ve been out of my mind… I can’t belive he did this” she sobbed, “I knew he was a wretch but she’s a child….”
“I don’t think he forced her” Asha reasoned “She seemed happy enough”
“What does she know? She’s a child, its her first bleed…. He tricked filled her head full of muddle. She said you visited afterwards I was so sure … I was so sure and she’s so young. Does he know you didn’t?”
Asha was pale she shook her head, “He thinks it worked” she explained
“Then what are we going to do?” the woman begged “He’ll be so angry?”
“He’s gettin married” Asha reasoned, “In a week he’ll be asking me to put a baby in the belly of his new wife… Last thing he’ll be thinkin about is ya daughter. If he does, well then I guess we will have to pretend she’s lost it. Women lose babe’s all the time and if he has a new wife then perhaps he won’t care”
The woman nodded but looked unconvinced. “You don’t understand how obsessed he is… I fear he’ll think she’s done it on purpose”
“Don’t worry” Asha assured her “We’ll deal with him later”
The woman nodded; seeming to understand that she was suddenly intruding “I’m sorry” she apologised seeming suddenly calmer. “I should leave you to your evening”
“I’m might glad you did the right thing” he announced when the woman was gone, “That girl was but a child, she didn’t deserve fer that”
Asha nodded and remained pale, she seemed distracted but even that was not enough to tell him something was wrong or at least he managed to ignore it when she returned to him and climbed up on to the bed and straddled his lap.
Kissing him she seemed eager to resume their previous activity’s and taking his hand she wasted no time slipping it under the skirt of her dress and on to the bare skin of her thigh.
Tracing his hand across the skin he quickly noticed she wore no undergarments. “What’s this?” he asked, mildly surprised by the situation. They had been in heated situations before and while she had touched him he had never returned the favour in fear of doing something unwelcome. Frankly he’d just never gotten up the courage to try.
Kissing him again she didn’t answer but instead, undid the belt of his pants and returned him to his exposed position. His stomach flipped as body quickly remembered how much he desired her.
Suddenly panic as she maneuverer herself above him, worried she was going to take the encounter to a stage beyond his comfort he caught hold of her before she lowered herself.
“I won’t” she promised. “I just want ter feel what it’s like to have you next to me”
Nodding he released her, his brain unable to think coherently enough to protest. He knew it was wrong but he wanted to feel it too and when he could his instinct took over pulling her lips to meet his he kissed her and was unable to prevent his body from pushing up against hers.
The heat grew it was as close to the act as they could get without actually performing it, both wanting it and yet both holding back. Suddenly she moved, no longer was his skin simply next to her’s.
Panic! One push from her or him and there would be no going back.
She seemed to realise it too, her eye’s locked onto his.
“We should stop” he whispered, flustered and knowing that this time things had gone far too far. Taking hold of her around the waist so she couldn’t do anything she might later regret.
“Let’s not” she reasoned, still out of breath “Let us… ”
“When were married. I want it to be perfect for you” he promised, he loved her and while many men would not have stopped, he just wanted things to be as they should be.
“It will be”
“I don’t want yer to regret it”
“I won’t” she promised, “I won’t, please…”
It was barely a moment later when he realised he’d let go of her. It had not been a conscious decision and yet he done it anyway and the step that could not be undone had been taken.
They both froze it had occurred so easily, he’d somehow expected it to be more difficult. “Does it hurt?” he whispered scared to move.
“No” she replied shaking her head, pushing down on him as though she wanted to make she he was as fully inside her as he could be.
“We shouldn’t be doing this” he reasoned.
“Don’t spoil it” she urged, unbuttoning his shirt. Nodding her agreed and returned the gesture by pulling her dress up over her head. Resisting all urges to move inside her, until he had undone and removed all corsetry. Fearful if he did the encounter would be ended far too soon.
“I love yer” he whispered.
“I know” she nodded, kissing him while starting to gently rock.
Still kissing her and with his pants still half on he tried to rotate her onto her back so he could move on top of her. She resisted pushing back she didn’t want to seem to go.
Damit,why did she always have to control everything. She could even let him be the man in this?
Pushing her again with the intention of flipping her onto her back she again pushed back returning the gesture with an increase in pace in her movement.
“Please” he begged.
Seeming to understand, she nodded reluctantly and this time allowed him to move her. Withdrawing momentarily he used the opportunity the kick off his shoes and pants before resuming.
Afterwards he lay down beside her, out of breath and somewhat mixed in emotions. “I love yer” he promised again reaching out to her.
She didn’t answer but instead stared at the ceiling.
“You regret it?” he asked, suddenly concerned.
“No” she replied, her hand moving to her stomach, he watched in awe. He’d never before seen her truly naked, glimpses occasionally when he’d managed a peek, but never before had he seen her so exposed to him. The woman he loved, lying there unashamed she was beautiful.
“You’ll have to marry me now” he added half joking, half serious guilt suddenly leaking into what should have been a perfect moment.
Then he noticed, muttering….. Hand on her stomach she was muttering.. no not simply muttering.
“Asha what yer doing?” he asked suddenly.
She didn’t answer her face strained with concentration.
“What are yer casting?” he asked, his mind going into over drive. Asha was not a religious woman, but she was a woman used to controlling her own future.
Was that what she was doing? Controlling her own future now?
“Are yer…. Are stopping yourself getting pregnant?” he asked, surprised at how much the thought suddenly scared him.
“Asha no!” he argued, pulling her hand away from her stomach. “If what we did, means a baby I’m happy”
“What?!” she asked suddenly paying attention.
“A baby, if this means a baby… let it happen” he insisted, “If god deems it then let it be” he begged.
“I wasn’t… I wasn’t doing that”
“I… was just watchin” she explained, “I thought if I could see what happened then …. Then maybe I could finish the spell”
“Lord Hamdun’s spell?” he growled, suddenly angry. Even now, here with him she was thinking about spells and the lord. While he was here thinking about her what they had done and how perfect she was. She had been thinking about other things.
“Aw Fault don’t be upset, yer don’t understand”
“I understand” he disagreed, sitting up and grabbing his pants from the floor.
“I can’t make it work” she whimpered, “I need this, I need to see”
“So is that what this was about?” he asked, pulling his pants on. “Stupid!” he cursed at himself.
“It’s not how you think”
“An what about the girl?” he asked, “Yer didn’t do what the lord asked, why? Because you couldn’t or wouldn’t?” She went quiet, she didn’t need to answer.
“Yer couldn’t” he spat, “But would ya? If the spell had been finished would you have done that to a child?”
He didn’t let her answer he didn’t really care “What about me… was any of it real?”
“Of course it was”
“Forget it” he growled feeling hurt, had the whole thing been an act. Had she wanted him at all? While he’d been worried about making it perfect for her she had done it for nothing more than an experiment.