Author Topic: Gizamaluke's Glade (Story)  (Read 856 times)


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Gizamaluke's Glade (Story)
« on: August 02, 2013, 10:16:53 PM »
A little extra Risk story... might disturb some folk, but should be safe for work! Stuff is mostly only implied. Still PG-13-ish.

Please don't let your opinion of this story affect Nyika in any way! I wrote this without her help so if anything about it bugs you, it's not her fault at all.

Every damn giggle was like a spear through his lungs. He smiled back at her still, raised his paw to trail after her as she went spinning away through the woods. Her scarves whipped in the rising summer storm, rising like the bile in his throat. Soon the scarves were free in the breeze, and he jogged to collect them. Then shawl, camise, skirts- she stood as a ghost in the glade, her silk shift rippling, her reflection in the pond impossibly still. He crept up behind her, paws around her throat, kissed the back of her neck. They collapsed into the dewy grass, rolled through the flowers that had grown since last time they'd been trampled.

"C'mere, you..." Her teeth nipped his shoulder, her paws wrapped around his waist, tugging at his belt.

"Freya... ahhh... take it slow, it hurts..."

She relented and lay back in the grass, purring, contented for now to rub his arms as he leaned over her. Her claws traced the scabs criss-crossing every muscle.

"My proud warrior- how many more are there?"

"Not as many as there ought've been," he said, grinning, licking her ears. "Think I'd let a score of otters each get their turn on me? Nah."

"But enough..."

"They'll scar soon."

"Shame I won't get to see..."

Risk pulled back, suddenly nervous. "What makes you say that..."

"Silly! My kitten..." She rubbed her ample stomach. "He'll be born soon. I'll never get time away from him... Remember Mekad? It wasn't a season after his teeth came in he let me leave him with the servants longer than an hour."

Risk rolled off her, sat bow-legged with his tail between, watching the tip twitch and slap the edge of the pond.

"Come, we don't have to talk about that now. Let's enjoy ourselves... one last time, for now. There will always be later. And I'm sure you don't have to wait."


"Look at yourself, Risk. Jills all but line up outside your tent. Hellgates, I'm hardly the best you've had. I've got nothing on a ferret jill, I know that. And sure, maybe I can pick anyone from the horde as well, but you... you're something else."

He was something else, he realized. Something she didn't seem to understand.

"I'm a killer," he said, "not a lover..."

"You say that, but-"

He tossed the knife in the air, caught it between two claws by the blade. He just stared at the water, tossed it again, caught it again.

"He knows," he said. His voice was dull and low, a lazy bee's buzz deep in his chest.


She put a paw on his shoulder, leaned in to kiss his cheek.

"I'm not going to run."

"Nor'm I."

"You can kill him instead."

"Aye. I could kill him. If I had the equipment, the... time..."

Her paw dropped.

"But you don't."

"I wouldn't get out alive. Needs plannin'..."

She hugged her knees. Tears trickled through her whiskers.

"Don't bother. He needn't die... Mekad- he'll have one of us, at least."

Risk said nothing. He let his knife fall, landing point-first into the soft ground.

"So?" she said.

"I don't know what to do."

"Do what you always do..."


"I slipped up, Risk. It's not your fault. I said something, I did something. He won't know it was you. He asked you to do this."

"Maybe he just wants us to run away together."

"Will we?"

He shook his head.

"It's too... hard. Life on the run. I tracked down enough slaves thought they could escape to know. I got it easy now... why ought I give it up? For this..."

"I'm not asking you to."

He said, again, "I don't know what to do."

She hugged him from behind, her paws dropping to undo his belt properly.

"Do what you have to," she whispered. He turned and kissed her, held her arms, guiding her down below him.

They made love in the flowers, in the pond, in the grass, in the rain, and when it was over and she was sleeping, he lay back and watched the sky darken and the clouds disperse until the stars came out.



"I was thinking... did he say- did he say to kill... the kitten, too...?"


"Then... don't."

"I... don't understand."

"Take him. Take him out of me. It will be any day now. He'll be healthy enough, he'll live, you'll take him back. He'll father must accept-"

"No, he won't. Unless I tell him..."


Risk sat up. He began to dress himself.

"Who else, then?" she said.


"Who else are you going to kill? To cover your tracks."

"I don't know yet."

"I was never very fond of Stekpo..."

Risk sighed.

"I'm sorry," said Freya. "This must be hard for you."

"That's the problem," he said, crawling over to her. He pressed his knife against her throat. "It isn't."

She smiled at him.

"Save my kitten. Promise."

He slit her throat with the same gentleness he'd removed her last garments. She closed her eyes on her own, before it was over. Her smile never faded.

Risk knelt there in the dark, for what felt like hours. Her blood trickled down his neck as he held the knife to his throat. It would have been so easy. Just following orders.

He didn't know what made him do it. The coldness filled him from the inside, crept into his limbs, clouding his mind. The knife fell away from his neck and dug into Freya's stomach, ripping it open. The next few cuts were more precise, more thoughtful. He peeled away flesh and dug his paws in. He pulled the kitten out, slit the cord, and wrapped it- her, he couldn't help but peek- in Freya's rain-soaked shawl. She was the ugliest damn thing he'd ever seen. He clutched her to his chest as he stumbled through the forest- not back to the fort, but away, as far away as he could go.

The kitten burned in his paws like fire. Her little heart roared through him, rattling his bones, like her mother's purring had.

Then it stopped.

Risk fell, dropping to his knees. He screamed nothing at nothing, punched the ground so hard he broke his wrist. He lay his good paw on the ground, the kitten curled up in it, bald and bloody and lifeless. He wept and closed his mouth around her muzzle, breathing softly, trying to fill her lungs, get things working again. He pressed his broken paw against her heart, which he could nearly see through her skin. Lungs, heart, in out, in out, air, blood, work, damnit, work!

He gave up. He'd killed her. This tiny kitten, born unto death- he'd killed her. She had never seen the sun. She had never...

Her heart was still beating. Her lungs, still filling, emptying, filling again. Risk stared, and wept harder. He picked her up, and carried her into the darkness as far as the darkness would let him.