When Wyll left Kat’s side in Balgruuf’s throne room he did not immediately exit the hall. Instead, after her attention had been engaged by the Jarl, he walked over past the long dining table and into the alcove where Farengar Secret Fire had his magical laboratory set up. There were alchemy and enchanting stations, with many ingredients and soul gems scattered in among the books on the long central table.
The two of them were close in age, despite Farengar’s lofty position as court mage to the Jarl; and despite their differing interests they had become friends over the years Wyll had spent in the area – more so now that he was friends with Lydia, who had also known Farengar while she was living in Dragonsreach.
“Greetings, O Mighty Wizard,” Wyll murmured in Farengar’s ear as the young mage was bent over the enchanting table, deep in concentration. Wyll’s own mental associations with enchanting tables had, in recent months, been substantially altered by his activities with Kat. He thought with a touch of pity that Farengar would likely never get to experience anything like that. As far as he knew, the man was a virgin.
Farengar jumped half a foot, then smiled ruefully as he realized his enormous young friend was looming above him. “Wyll, don’t do that! I might have turned you into a toad!”
Wyll smiled back at him. “That’d be one big toad,” he remarked genially. “So, have you heard? We’re getting married!”
“We?” the young wizard asked. He knew that Wyll was romantically involved with The Dragonborn, had been there when he and Anders, that Breton mage, had flown off on dragonback with her a few months ago. But he’d gotten the impression that was sort of a casual thing.
“Me and Kat, … and Anders, of course!” Wyll replied, intending to blow Farengar’s mind and meeting with fair success. Farengar looked as though he thought he had misheard him.
“You and Anders are both marrying The Dragonborn?” Wyll nodded, grinning. He was taking more satisfaction than he’d expected in ruffling the feathers of society with the revelation of their unconventional arrangement.
“Well…” Farengar gulped, not wishing to appear behind the times, “Congratulations. When’s the joyful day?”
“The 10th of next month, in Solitude,” his burly friend replied. “You’ll be invited to the party out at the Suite on the 11th, so don’t forget to mark the date.” Farengar looked a bit pleased at this news. Like most Whiterun residents who didn’t get out much, he’d heard wild stories of night life at the Suite and was itching to see for himself.
“There’s something I’m hoping you can help me with, though,” Wyll continued. “Do you know the Blessing of Mara enchantment?” Farengar considered. There wasn’t that much call for this particular spell. It certainly wasn’t all that useful; but it was the enchantment traditionally cast on wedding rings, which were then known as the Bond of Matrimony.
“I haven’t learned it, but I have an old wedding ring in my possession. If you’ll pay me for the ring, I can destroy it and learn the enchantment. I assume you’ve got some ring you want enchanted?” Farengar’s antics with Odahviing aside, he was not an idiot.
“It’s not finished yet,” Wyll told him. “But I’m getting close. I could bring it up here sometime in the next couple of weeks, and you could put the enchantment on then. How much do you want for the ring?” Farengar was still feeling a little taken aback. His friend Wyll, a veritably godlike warrior who had (to hear some tell it) laid half the women in the Whiterun area, packing it in to be with one woman forever – and that woman shared with another man? It hardly bore thinking about, but apparently it was true. On the other hand, he had to admit that The Dragonborn was one hell of a woman. She’d figured prominently in some of his one-handed orgasms.
The young wizard stammered, brought back from his fantasies, to say “Uh? Oh, ten septims will be plenty.” Wyll pulled out a small coin purse and handed over the requested amount. These days, he had no shortage of money. And he was determined to spend it as needed.
“Thanks, Far. I’ve got to run, get some more errands done before Kat’s finished talking with the Jarl. But I’ll see you when I get the ring finished. Take care!” With that, he hastened down the steps and left the building.
Wyll trotted down the several flights of stairs he’d trotted up, earlier. If he wasn’t going to be doing much questing, he mused, perhaps he should just come here and run up and down the stairs for a few hours each day. A guy his size needed to stay in shape, or he’d be looking like a 2-legged horker in no time. Those enormous, aggressive, and rather gelatinous pinnipeds had provided him with meat, tusks, and a lot of sport as a lad growing up in Dawnstar. They could be found all along Skyrim’s north coast.
Wyll reached the bottom of the stairs near the gates, and went in to talk with Ulfberth. “Good to see you, friend,” the equally hulking dark-haired Nord said as he walked into the shop. Ulfberth was one of the few people Wyll had met who could look him eye-to-eye… and possibly, throw him across the room. Wyll ascertained that Warmaiden’s had now sold the rest of the consigned weapons, and collected the remaining money due. That left them with enough gold to cover the full amount of Hegmar’s final estimate, and thousands left over in case of cost overruns. Considering Anders had yet to come up the plans for the hot water system, there likely would be some of those. But no worries!
As Wyll was preparing to leave, Ulfberth said “You know, Adrianne and I were talking about the things you’ve been bringing us. She’s really impressed with the quality, and she’s wondering if you’d like to go into some kind of a partnership. You bring us all your output, we sell it, and you’d get your cut of the sales of your own goods, plus a percentage of the profits on everything else we sell. What do you think?”
Wyll considered. That seemed like a better idea than opening up their own store out at the Suite, or at the farm. People were used to seeking out Warmaiden’s when they needed arms or armor, and it was centrally located near the front gates of one of the province’s foremost cities. But he didn’t know whether Kat really wanted to go into business making and selling armor. At the least, he was fairly sure she hadn’t time to embark on a new business venture for the next few weeks.
“Katja’s our armorer,” Wyll told Ulfberth. “I’ll bring it up to her, and she might be interested. But at the moment, she’s a little too busy to be doing much smithing. We’re getting married, you know.” Ulfberth grinned at him.
“I hadn’t heard!” he boomed. Before he could get any farther, Wyll explained the unusual circumstances. They didn’t seem to faze Ulfberth in the least, and he was delighted to learn that he and Adrianne were invited to the big celebration at the Suite on the day after the wedding. As a hard-working married couple, they seldom had a chance to party.
“See you soon, then,” Wyll said and left the shop, heading next door. He and Lydia and Anja were playing Argis’ card game when Katja returned from her conference with the Jarl, bearing signed and sealed documents hidden in her pouch and an air of triumph. There were times when power and prestige were so handy. She and Wyll had nowhere particularly important to go, all their errands in town now concluded (though Katja had no inkling of what Wyll’s had been, and he was equally ignorant of hers). So they settled in to enjoy some family time with the little fire-haired darling who had helped to bring them all closer together.
Lydia laid on some snacks as the afternoon wore on. Katja and Wyll had skipped lunch, but they had plenty of bread and cheese and freshly fried potatoes to tide them over until the supper Lydia had promised them. Lydia had even come up with a new and surprising variation on the potato chips that had only recently swept to popularity: instead of cutting the potatoes into thin slices, she cut them into elongated chunks the diameter of a woman’s pinky finger and as long as the potato.
After dropping them into the hot fat until they were bubbling and golden, Lydia fished them out with a slotted spoon and set them to drain on a rack above a platter. They could be eaten now, but if you waited until they cooled and then put them back into the kettle of boiling tallow for another few minutes they emerged golden brown and delightfully crispy. A sprinkling of salt completed the process.
They all enjoyed several servings of these as the afternoon wore on to evening, washed down by ale that was regrettably little cooler than room temperature. Argis had dug a sort of cellar beneath the cottage where root vegetables and other items could be kept far cooler than the outside air; but they’d all become a bit spoiled by Anders’ trick with the Frost spell and the drinks cooler.
“These are sensational, Lydia!” Katja exclaimed as she grabbed a handful of the deliciously crispy potato fingers. “We’ve got to start serving these at the Suite.”
“It takes a little longer than the chips,” Lydia said. “But it’s handy that you can pre-cook them and then let them cool and keep them around for hours until just before eating – then give them the second cooking so they get all hot and crisp.” Indeed. The chips came out of the kettle crispy and stayed that way, all moisture having been driven from the potato slices by the hot oil. But there was no way you could keep them fresh, and if not eaten immediately they soon lost a lot of their savor.
As evening came on Argis appeared, perspiring a bit. He’d been perspiring all day, in fact – acting as a member of the construction crew as much as an overseer. He’d refined and expanded on the architectural drawings, and was gaining an education in all aspects of house-building daily. After years during which he’d learned little or nothing save what he could teach himself, this project had expanded his horizons until he felt like his understanding was growing at an exponential rate.
In his artist’s mind he envisioned it as a blossom opening to the sun, drinking in knowledge and becoming larger and more beautiful with each passing day. Just as his heart was also expanding, welcoming in Liddy and Ani and the people he had come to think of as friends – even if Katja was technically his boss. In short, life was good – and looked to be getting still better in the near future. He was delighted to come home to his beloved and their daughter and find Wyll and Katja there, too.
On the other hand, Katja’s presence created the need to dissemble. She was not supposed to know about the farm, the house, or the surprise that Wyll and Anders were preparing for her. And Argis was not accustomed to deception. Katja approached him and threw her arms around him, for which he was also not prepared. She was so emotional, this young mistress of his. No more skilled at deception than he was himself, really – whatever she felt in her heart was there on her face for all to see, nor would she make apologies for it.
Argis’ feelings toward Katja were a curious amalgam of admiration for her as an attractive young woman (though she couldn’t, in his opinion, hold a candle to his Liddy), respect for her as both his Thane and a person who had performed legendary feats, and the protective love a brother might feel for his wayward little sister. It was the middle attitude that came to the fore when she asked him casually, “So what’s this big project that’s keeping you out all day?”
Yet, he didn’t even really have to lie. “I met a local builder who needed some temporary help on a construction project. He likes my ability with drawing, and I’m sort of learning the trade.”
“That’s wonderful, Argis! So good to learn new skills… Say, are you working on that farm out by the Suite?” she guessed with alarming accuracy.
Argis froze for a moment. “Uh, that’s right, I …” he began to stammer out, wracking his brain for a suitable lie; but Katja rode right over him blithely.
“Wyll and I saw that this morning on the way into town!” she said enthusiastically. “He told me how Nazeem is hoping to grow more crops with a larger farm crew. It seems like a good idea.” She patted his arm encouragingly, proud that he was taking the initiative to expand his abilities. That he was technically supposed to be hanging around Breezehome at her beck and call, ready to carry out any orders she might have for him, was something they’d both ignored.
“Well, good… uh, good. Are you staying for supper?” Argis asked, hoping to change the subject.
“Yes we are,” Katja replied with a sly smile. “And I have some news for you…” She told him of the forthcoming wedding and the plans surrounding it – including the information, which she hadn’t yet told anyone, that Jarl Balgruuf had agreed to be there. Argis fairly glowed with happiness on hearing the news. There was still the issue of his responsibilities to the Hold of The Reach; but as long as he was in Katja’s service, at least, she was the boss – and she, clearly, wished him and his bride-to-be nothing but happiness and prosperity.
Lydia served them all venison steaks in a red wine and mushroom sauce, with a boiled grain pilaf that was cooked in venison broth and seasoned with herbs, tiny chunks of carrots and shreds of cabbage mixed in. It was amazingly good, and Katja was once again astounded at the unexpected talents of those around her. After supper, Wyll and Argis volunteered to do the washing-up and Katja accompanied Lydia and Anja upstairs to tuck the girl into bed and read stories to her before she went to sleep.
This gave the men a chance to confer. With Kat hanging around the Suite while Anders was at Fort Dawnguard, Wyll was not able to spend the bulk of his days at the project site. He spoke quietly to Argis, handing him a scrubbed plate to be rinsed and dried. “How’s it going? I barely managed to convince Kat of that story about Nazeem when we walked past this morning.”
Argis smiled wryly at him. “It would have been nice to have some warning!”
“Sorry,” Wyll replied. “She’s been running around so much with that map of hers I haven’t been keeping up with her plans. Then last night after supper Anders asked her for the use of the map so he could take Serana back to Dawnguard.”
“Serana?” Argis asked, surprised.
“Yeah, she’s back – and she’s not a vampire now. She got cured. I get the feeling she’s going to be breaking some hearts pretty soon… But anyhow, I don’t think that was the real reason Anders went to Dawnguard. I think he’s hoping he can pick up some clues to the Dwemer technology we need for the house’s hot water system. But how much time have we got before Hegmar needs it in place?”
The washing, rinsing and drying went on. “Don’t worry about that,” Argis told him. “I’ve made sure that the design includes plenty of room for whatever system is going to heat the water coming in from the cistern, and we’re leaving space below the tub for that system too. If you recall, we decided to excavate a full basement, and there’ll be steps down to a good-sized entry door. We should be able to finish the entire addition right up to the roofs and then start doing the interior work, leaving the hot water systems for last.”
Wyll was seriously impressed at the air of expertise Argis had acquired in just a few days on the job. And a little envious, as well. He enjoyed acquiring new skills too, but he was falling behind in learning about house-building while working to distract Kat and keep her away from the project. He sighed, and set to work scrubbing the stewpot, up to mid-forearm in hot soapy water. As he worked at this, a thought came to him about how he was going to keep Kat distracted, and he immediately cheered up.
The men were just finishing up their chore as the women came quietly downstairs. Katja felt a sensation of bliss. She had just had a delicious meal that she had not had to cook, and then somebody else had cleaned up after it while she engaged in the onerous task of lulling an adorable five-year-old to sleep. Sometimes, it was hard to imagine life could get any better. And then she recalled that she and Wyll were on their own tonight; and it did.
These thoughts on both their minds, Katja and Wyll cut the convivial evening a little shorter than they might otherwise have done. Who knew, perhaps Lydia and Argis might be feeling a little celebratory at the news of their impending nuptials, and wishing for some privacy. They soon said their goodbyes, and set off on foot out the gates of Whiterun and down the road toward the Suite.
Night had fallen some time past, but it was fairly warm for this time of year. Whiterun never seemed to get all that cold, considering it was little further south than the miserable environs of Windhelm. Katja had had a few glasses of wine with supper, but other factors were at work on her as well and her mood was soaring. After they’d left the stables behind and were alone together on the moonlit road, she whirled around and launched herself into Wyll’s arms. “Oh, Wyll! I’m so happy!”
She planted a big kiss on him before letting herself dropping to the ground again. He grinned at her, white teeth glistening faintly in the moonlight. If she was happy, so was he. And if moonlight is the natural element of lovers, the planet of Nirn was made for such as them. What a sight, when both Masser and Secunda were in the sky! As they continued on their way home, the question of the real estate search came up again. “We’ve been all around the City,” Wyll told her. “I’m beginning to think that the best thing might be to buy some land and build a house on it.”
“Hmm, that’s not a bad idea,” Katja said.
She’d hoped to go straight from their wedding to a home of their own, one without a parade of strangers wandering through it. But aren’t good things worth waiting for? If they started with land they could design their own home, make it everything they wanted. After all, they were rich. All of Katja’s thinking on the subject had been geared toward the idea of compromising her hopes and dreams with the limited reality of what was available in the Whiterun area. Not that ideal homes were really available anywhere. She liked Vlindrel Hall quite a lot, and would always have a warm place in her heart for Breezehome; but neither of them was the house in which she wanted to raise her children.
The more she thought about it, the more appeal the land idea had. So what if they had to wait a few months to achieve their goal? Their lives at the Suite were certainly comfortable enough, and what was wrong with continuing in that way a little longer while engaging in the fun project of finding their land, then designing and building the home they all wanted on it? Katja was sure Anders and Wyll would have their own ideas to add, and as it would be home to all of them it was only reasonable they should all get to contribute to its design.
All this time they’d been walking, and after completing this train of thought joy bubbled up in Katja once more. She was so in love – with Wyll, with Anders, with the Suite and the friends she was making here in Skyrim, with the idea of a home and family that only months before she’d rejected as a death sentence for her freedom. Now, she realized, part of being free was freedom to choose the responsibilities you wanted, the ones that would reward you in ways that no carefree, knockabout life could ever do.
Yes! She wanted Anders’ babies, and Wyll’s, and a life filled with meaning. Everything was going to be all right, was going to be wonderful. But evidently, she’d better keep her amulet on for a while yet. Once again, Katja halted her progress to dance in the road ahead of Wyll and leap into his arms. “You’re a genius!” she declared, clinging to him like a limpet and kissing him deeply. Surprised and delighted, he was perfectly happy to accept genius status in exchange for his small suggestion – the more so because it so marvelously obfuscated the secret plan he and Anders were hatching.
He gathered her into his powerful arms and kissed her thoroughly in return. His cock was achingly hard beneath his trousers, Kat’s magical ability in full force. I love her so much! Wyll realized with surprise. It wasn’t just the sexual element, though that was certainly a component. Her kind heart, her sincerity, her bravery, her wit and beauty – they all called to him and made him hers as no other woman had been able to do. She had him by the heart, and he was glad.
The two of them were ill-suited by size for walking the rest of the way to the Luxury Suite necking like a couple of love-struck teenagers; but they gave it their best shot. Along the way there was giggling, fancy footwork, stumbling and occasional bouts of very heavy breathing. How fortunate no bandits or hungry saber cats were prowling the moonlit night!
By the time they finally made it back to the Suite, Katja and Wyll found themselves surprisingly warm for a night in the middle of winter. “I have an idea,” she murmured in his ear, which brought him to instant alertness. When Kat got an idea, he’d learned, it was almost guaranteed to be something he was going to like. Instead of going inside the Suite, they walked around the deck’s north side to the back. The moons were setting, and already the rear deck and its two pools were dipping into shadow.
The larger pool set into the Luxury Suite’s deck was intended for swimming, in warm weather to cool off or as exercise for hardier souls at other times of the year. Its waters were approximately at the same temperature as those of the White River, flowing along down at the bottom of the slope to the east. Those were fed in part from the snows atop Throat of the World, so now in the first week of the new year the larger pool had sat unused for some time.
The smaller pool, however… It was not hot, like the water in the bathing pool inside. But it was definitely warm, a lot warmer than the air temperature on this night in Morning Star. To the slightly overheated pair returning from Whiterun, it felt perfectly wonderful. And there was absolutely no one around. Farquhar patrolled the grounds during the daytime, but there wasn’t much for him to see or guard against at night; so he was probably inside having supper or relaxing in the hot pool. Katja and Wyll were alone.
Like two kids engaged in some delicious mischief they stripped off their clothing, dropping it at poolside, and slipped into the warm water. “Ooh!” Katja exclaimed, diving under and then popping back up blowing, like a breaching horker. “This is wonderful!” Wyll sank into the water, sliding all the way down to the bottom where he held his breath, looking up at her, before his buoyancy dragged him to the surface again. This pool was of a similar size to the one inside, and having it all to themselves meant they could really move around a little and play.
The situation had reminded Wyll of an oft-cherished fantasy of his, and he was pursuing it. In a few moments he had pinned Kat against the bench that ran along the pool’s east side, and his hands were running all over her naked body. She struggled a little, but not for long. Her breasts bobbed on the surface between them as he squeezed her close, hands massaging her buttocks as his stiff cock jutted, pressing against her abdomen. Wyll’s mouth engulfed hers, tongue down her throat, excitement roaring in his veins.
Being in the water took away most of their weight, making things possible that normally would not be. It was almost like flying. Katja flexed her body and wriggled out of Wyll’s grasp like a fish, darting away to the bottom of the pool and then surfacing, a wide grin on her face, at the far end. Water plastered her hair down into red snakes draping her shoulders and breasts. His eyes shining with delight and strong desire, Wyll rumbled “I’ll get you!” This put Katja in mind of the fun they’d had in that icy pool upstream from Dragon Bridge, back before the push to defeat Alduin. She’d been tempted then to let Wyll catch her and have his way with her, but time concerns had gotten in the way. Now, they had all the time in the world.
As before, Katja was too quick for him to catch in open water. But in the relatively narrow confines of the pool, Wyll was able to corner her – smothering her with hot kisses and driving her insane. The urge to give in to him fought against the desire to prolong the fun of the chase – and she led him around and around until he was beginning to get a little winded. Finally, she took pity on him. From across the pool, she beckoned: “Sit down.” Catching his breath, he smiled and did as he was bidden. His member still thrust up rigid in his lap, quivering with eagerness to sheath itself inside her.
Katja dived beneath the water and swam across to him, then holding her breath began working over his cock with hands and tongue. The water was sweet, and almost body temperature. Before long, of course, she had to come up to breathe. Huh, she thought. Should have taken a potion of waterbreathing before we got started here. Ah well, another time… She surged up from beneath the surface, shooting up to throw her arms around Wyll’s neck, as he seized her buttocks and slipped her down on top of him, engulfing that eager erection. OH yes…
As Wyll began fucking her at last, neither he nor she had to put out more than the tiniest bit of effort for maximum movement. It was like making love floating in air. Was this how dragons did it? Katja wondered. Actually so far as she knew there were no female dragons. Did they all just spontaneously arise, transformed from volcanic lava or something? Speaking of volcanic…
The prolonged, rising excitement of the chase culminating at last in their near-weightless joining had both of them gasping, moaning, and screaming as the sensation where cock met cunt burgeoned into an unstoppable wave of passion. The surface of the water was hurled violently about as Wyll pounded into Katja with increasing fury, splashing their faces. They scarcely noticed. Before very long he pulled her all the way down onto him as his cock pulsed and spasmed, shooting inside her clutching depths.
Katja wrapped her arms tight around Wyll’s neck, kissing his wet cheek, then seeking his mouth to merge herself more fully with him. Wow! This was something she’d never tried before, and the effect had been soul-shaking. Now, though, she was wondering about the water. She didn’t fully understand how the pool’s cleaning system worked, but it seemed likely they might shortly be swimming in diluted jiz – as soon as they came apart.
Pulling away from the kiss, Katja murmured in Wyll’s ear. “Can you lift us out of the water before you slip out?” Taking her meaning, he replied “I think so. Just let me get…” he grunted, grasping her buttocks and standing up, as she held tight to his neck and wrapped her legs around his hips, “a grip.” Holding her tightly, mindful of how slippery she was, he walked carefully up the pool steps and to the deck above, stepping a few feet away from the water before releasing her.
Katja slipped to the deck’s surface, Wyll’s cock popping free and hot semen running down her inner thighs to mix with the water clinging to them. “Hang on a second,” Wyll said, digging into a small chest atop the deck at poolside. There was a supply of the ubiquitous Suite towels within, and he handed her one. Smiling up at him, she took it and began wiping down her limbs and crotch. Meanwhile, he took another to blot the slippery mix of fluids from his sagging member.
When both of them had cleaned up a bit they tossed the towels to the deck and stepped together to embrace again. “By the Divines, Kat,” Wyll murmured softly as he held her close. “Do you know how long I’ve wanted to do that?”
She smiled up at him, a wicked smile barely visible in the dim light. “As long as I have?” she asked. They were loving the feel of skin on skin, but now they were wet from head to foot and the evening was wearing on, it began to occur to them that it was the middle of winter.
With an involuntary shiver, Katja said “I think it’s time to put clothes back on.” Wyll hugged her a little tighter, then let her go. They both used more towels to dry off, then slipped back into the clothing they’d discarded so hastily on their arrival. “Well,” she remarked, “might as well go inside and join the crowd.” Hand in hand, they walked in through the back doors of the Suite and headed for their usual table.