The question couldn't seem to leave Timena's thoughts as time passed. She could understand that it wasn't fair that she had to marry Silas considering that it was mainly her father's fault, but great leaders made sacrifices for their people, right?
As much as she hated the idea of being tied to anything other than her sword, a marriage to Silas Stokrev would become her life from then on. She would have to accept it for the fate of her island and the people in it.
That night Timena ate dinner in the company of the people she wanted to be near the least— Adelia smiled with glee at the sight of her eldest daughter at the table with them for the first time in many weeks. Silas sat across from her and she still avoided his gaze.
"So Vassar, tell us more stories of your wild days." Aldus suggested, trying to ease the tension in the room.
"Oh Aldus, no one wants to hear any more about my days of being young and foolish." Vassar laughed, flattered by the suggestion.
"We should talk about how amazing Timena's sparring was between Ulric and Leo today." Delacroix's timid voice sounded out.
Timena turned to look at her sister who was sitting at the farthest end of the table near their mother. She stared at Delacroix blankly before responding.
Now you're sucking up to me. A failed attempt. "No need for that, it isn't anything out of the ordinary." She replied politely before taking a sip of wine.
"Quite the contrary Timena, your skill and dedication over the years continue to beguile me. I'm quite the proud father." Vassar beamed.
She rolled her eyes in annoyance, causing both Silas and Aldus to chuckle.
"More importantly let's discuss the wedding." Adelia clasped her hands together excitedly. "Everyone is trying to ensure they receive an invitation, so many people are going to be in attendance Timena. Isn't it so exciting?"
"Yes mother, very." Timena answered, her tone insincere. Adelia hissed her teeth, looking away.
Everyone discussed details of the impending wedding except the two individuals that were getting married. Timena took in every word that was said and she tried to remember that it was just an alliance, to tie their kingdoms together and continue a financial bind that benefited her country. However, she hadn't ever given the idea of a wedding much thought. Timena knew that she certainly didn't want a big ceremony.
After dinner Silas led her into Vassar's study to talk privately.
"What do you want for our wedding?" He asked, leaning near the fireplace.
"It doesn't matter to me. Whatever my parents or you choose is fine." Timena lied.
"We both know that isn't true, you've made it clear that you don't fancy having many people there to witness it. Why is that?" He sounded almost defensive.
She snorted before looking to him. "Not for the reason you think, I just had never imagined a large wedding, I hadn't imagined any wedding." She shrugged, taking a seat.
Silas visibly relaxed. "Then we'll have a small ceremony, with only a few witnesses."
Timena sighed. "No, I think it's important for my mother and father to have so many people there I suppose."
"It isn't about them. It's about us." He stated seriously before walking over and bending down before her.
His eyes were just as serious when he looked at Timena. He pushed her curls away from her face so she couldn't hide from him. Holding her chin up slightly, he searched her face.
"I feel as though you'll slip through my fingers at any moment." He said admittedly.
Timena stared in confusion. "One moment you're, sweet and the next you're cold and cruel. It's giving me whiplash."
"Do you understand how frustrating you can be at times?" He chuckled lightly.
She looked at him in utter shock and amusement. "I could say the same for you." She countered.
Their laughter died down and it became silent. "Silas, is it necessary that we marry so soon, you said-"
She was cut off quickly. "I remember what I said, and you may hate me for it now, but I want you all to myself sooner rather than later." Silas spoke gently.
Pursing her lips, she slowly looked away.
"How much longer will Mororcin need your help? My father said you've been assisting us for a few years."
"As long as it's needed, and my father had been assisting Vassar long before I was. You had some relatives who were, thoughtless when it came to Mororcin. Before your father came into power, the previous kings and few queens had squandered away your island's wealth on greed and selfishness. Vassar had walked into a heap of debt that was not his doing and tried to uphold his people and the land as best he could, but it wasn't enough. My father owed yours a favor, I'll never know what it was but, he agreed to help Mororcin and I've continued that."
Timena began to understand a bit more of where her father was coming from, as convoluted as it all was... she understood to an extent.
"I won't say that what he did was fair to you, but I'm glad he did it." Silas smirked as he lightly stroked her cheek.
Timena could not make sense of Silas, how one moment he could be so open and gentle with her, then so cold and callous the next. It was frustrating to not know which version of him she might be dealing with, because slowly he was beginning to get underneath her skin.
With the company of two of Silas' guards and two of Vassar's guards, the following morning Timena rode alongside them as they traveled to Gabaden. As usual, nothing was necessarily out of the ordinary as they surveyed the streets. Timena made her way to the church, accompanied by Silas' men and went straight to work.
As she served food to each person that came up, she looked around the church, remembering that she had scaled the sides of it only a few weeks before. She chuckled lightly at the thought.
"Some for me please." Aldus stood with a smirk plastered on his face and bowl in hand.
Timena glared, fighting to suppress a smile. "Don't you have more important things to be doing?"
"Thought I might visit my dearest friend hard at work. Is that not allowed?" He asked playfully.
Timena narrowed her gaze. "Did Silas send you?"
"No, I'm here of my own free will."
After pushing Aldus out of the way, he sat on nearby pew patiently waiting for her to finish her duties before she was finally able to remove the tattered apron from around her waist.
"Let's go." She passed by him, walking up the staircase, leaving him to follow behind her.
"So how are you taking all of this now?" He asked her, genuinely interested to know.
They traveled down the cobbled streets, greeting the townspeople as they talked.
"I'm no better than I was before, but you made me realize that I need to put my people first, and not be selfish."
"You aren't selfish Timena, I don't blame you for taking off but you are right. Your people do need you. I think what you're doing is noble, a sign of a great leader." He added.
Timena sighed, a small feeling of relief had been offered by him as he said those last few words. "Thank you." She said gratefully.
You should ask. Now is as good a time as ever, it's Aldus.
"Could I ask you something?" She spoke hesitantly.
"Of course." He replied as they traveled down an alleyway that led to a view overlooking a portion of the city. They leaned against the low brick wall.
"Was it only you, Silas and King Jarvis growing up?" She tried to approach the issue lightly.
His brows knit in confusion. "What do you mean?"
"W-Well, was there ever a motherly figure around?" Oh yes, because that was subtle Timena.
"Oh, neither of us ever knew our mothers. Father said that my mother was a whore and that she died in childbirth. He told us that Silas' mother was a lunatic who disappeared after giving birth to him." He answered disinterestedly.
Timena's hands turned into fists at what she had heard, if only they knew the truth.
"I'm sorry." She said sadly.
"Well we never knew them so you can't really feel any way about it. I found my mother's body a few years ago, she's buried next to her childhood home in Calyx. She wasn't a whore though, the people who knew her told me stories about her, of who she was, her kindness and playful manner. I like to think I got my best qualities from her." He smiled longingly as his eyes focused on the city below.
"What about, Silas' mother?"
"Silas searched for her a few times over the years, but he never knew where to find her and our father was no help in the past either. He has a drawing of her that he keeps hidden somewhere back home."
Timena's head shot in his direction. "Who has a drawing? Silas?"
"Yes, she was very beautiful. Long dark hair and freckles if I'm remembering correctly. A few of the townspeople in Calyx actually remembered her— they said that she was very kind and innocent, and foolish enough to fall for our father. No one knew what happened to her though, she just vanished one night." He said absentmindedly.
"Why do you ask?" He narrowed his eyes, jokingly.
I don't know if I should tell him the truth, he might think I'm crazy.
"Just sheer curiosity." Timena let out a dry laugh.
She figured it would be best to tell Clara all that she had found out first before making a decision.
Where would I find her? She usually finds me, when I'm not looking for her.
Timena had checked the stable, the cellar, her bedroom and there wasn't a sign of Clara anywhere else. She had tried saying her name a few times out loud, but still nothing. She figured Clara would make an appearance whenever she truly felt like it.
"So the witch, Clara right, is Silas' mother?" Samuel tried to wrap his head around the new information.
"Yes, that was why she gave away my location, to help him." Timena repeated for what felt like the millionth time.
She had told him about everything— from Clara's past to the very present day, Timena needed to confide in someone and she had chosen her closest comrade. Samuel digested everything he'd been told, the skepticism was written all over his face, but he had listened.
"I'd very much like to meet this Clara." He said doubtfully.
Timena sighed, expecting him not to fully believe her. "I'd like for you to meet her as well so you can stop staring at me as though I've turned senile." She joked. "But I think this is good, now this may be proof and she can reveal herself to him eventually."
Samuel nodded. "Yes, if she hasn't been near him since his birth, they're due for a meeting, face to face." He paused. "Do you think she could magically let me defeat you in a match?"
Timena burst into laughter, lightly shoving his shoulder. "You'd need a lot of magic for that."
Samuel's laughter halted immediately at the sight of Silas approaching them, Timena turned to see him as well. She sighed as Samuel stood up, excusing himself.
"What was so funny?" He asked curiously.
"Nothing, just a foolish joke." She answered back.
His eyebrows furrowed in interest. "It can't be that foolish if it made you laugh like that?"
Timena snorted. "Trust me, the things I laugh at are most likely always foolish, perverted, or distasteful."
"I'm glad I know that now." Silas smiled.
She stood awkwardly fidgeting under his gaze. "Did you want something?"
"Just your company."
Timena's eyes bulged out momentarily. "Why did you actually come here? How did you know where I was?"
"The eyes and ears of the castle." He referred to the staff. "You don't believe that I just want to be near you?" He asked softly.
"I'm going to go inside." She pushed against the pillar before feeling a slight pull on her arm.
"Silas I have to, because in a month I won't have anywhere left to go." Timena said, painfully.
With that she turned to leave, ignoring the fact that Silas was close behind her. She tried to close her room door as she got upstairs but Silas' foot stopped her attempt. Pushing the door open, he strode in slowly.
Timena backed away into the corner as Silas moved in closer, eventually standing in front of her, looking down at her with warm eyes.
"Stop." She said, not too convincingly. He knew he was wearing down her defenses.
Timena, you are treading on very dangerous territory right now! She screamed inside her head.
Leaning down to meet her, he stopped just short of her lips. She looked up at him hesitantly but didn't pull away. He started off slowly with soft pecks that made her stomach feel queasy, but in the best way possible. His lips were soft and gentle against hers as his tongue delved in lightly, Timena had fought to resist the urge to touch him but she found herself wrapping her arms around his neck, bringing him closer. Silas' arms encircled her waist, his mouth was warm and eager as the kiss grew more urgent.
Timena found herself being lifted into his arms and carried to her bed. She began to panic.
"Silas, I-I'm not ready for-"
"I just want to pleasure you, that's all." He replied with a smirk.
Silas slowly removed her armor piece by piece, leaving her in her tunic and breeches. He removed her breeches, leaving her most intimate part exposed. Instinctively her hands went to cover the area, but Silas caught them immediately.
"Don't hide from me." He whispered. Timena's body shivered with nervousness as she drew her hands back.
Crawling on top of her, he kissed her again while pushing up the thin material, exposing her breasts. He groaned in satisfaction.
Her nipples perked at the sensation of cool air against them and her body trembled once more. Bringing his head down, he cupped them gently, admiring them before his hot mouth covered one and Timena's head fell back immediately.
He sucked and flicked the tiny buds back and forth with his tongue causing her hips to jump slightly at the sensation. Moving back to her lips, he kissed her a little more aggressively— her hands pressed against his hard chest while his hand made its' way at a leisurely pace, down her body and straight to the junction between her legs. Timena gasped but focused on his fingers, they stroked her folds softly before massaging her clitoris slowly.
"I want to taste you." He murmured. His deep voice caused her to shiver as she continued to focus on his fingers.
The momentary loss of Silas' fingers was quickly replaced with his warm mouth. Timena bit her lip as his arms spread her legs open wider, it was a strange sensation to have someone's mouth down there. His blue eyes connected with hers as his tongue lapped at the sensitive area with need— the feeling was building up and Timena felt herself getting closer to a climax.
"Silas, I'm... I'm close." She said through deep breaths, her fingers burying themselves in the dark strands.
Timena's back arched in delight as his tongue went around in circular motions. She stifled her moans as she felt the building sensation. Silas held onto her waist tightly to the point of pain as she continued to grind against his mouth and then,
Timena felt her orgasm wrack through her body suddenly. Her eyelids closed tightly as she rode out the waves of pleasure.
Eventually she pulled away, her hips bucking as Silas continued to tease the very sensitive area. She exhaled loudly as he came up to kiss her, a lingering wet kiss that caused Timena to feel her core tighten again.
"Imagine what I could do with my-" She covered his mouth with her hand as she pushed him away.
Timena couldn't even look at Silas as she began to dress herself. She didn't know what had come over her. She had gotten a taste of physical romance and it had made her lose all common sense apparently, she thought.
"Things aren't going back to how they were Timena. I've gotten a taste of you, and I want more." He declared.
She was at a loss for words. She had spent all this time, telling herself that she would stay away from him and not get caught up, that it was only alliance but here she was... with the remnants of her actions causing her very insides to tighten again at just the mere thought.
"I have to go, clean my sword." She lied, walking over to the door. Silas jumped from the bed, now blocking the door, preventing her from opening it.
Timena sighed, looking from the door handle and finally up at him.
He bent his head down to simply look at her and she let her eyes meet his. "I don't want this to end. It's just the beginning my love." Before she could respond, he pressed his lips to hers, kissing her slowly and using his tongue to make sure she would not forget what had just happened moments ago.
Silas stood up with a gleam in his eyes as his mouth turned up in that same menacing smirk Timena hated. He moved away from the door and she left the room, only to stand right outside. Her face grew warm at the thought of what had just happened and she couldn't stop herself from smiling.
You stupid bitch. Look what you've done now. Was it worth it? Yes, she answered promptly.