Chapter 18 - Eyes on Them 🌶
She sighed tucking herself into him, wanting to feel his skin against hers.
“You’re younger than I thought.” He said as he held her and she frowned turning to look at him.
“What?” She asked confused.
“You said earlier you were eighteen when you inherited that house and that you crossed over a few days later.”
“So you’re only eighteen…”
“I might be nineteen by now. It’s hard to keep track of time here.” She shrugged. “Does it matter?”
“No. I just didn’t realise you were so young.”
“I’m not a child.” She stated.
“I know. Do you think I’d be with you if you were even remotely childlike?”
Alice shook her head and then frowned. “How old are you?” She asked realising that she didn’t have a clue. She knew he was older, she could see it in his face but his exact age, she couldn’t guess.
“I’m almost ten years older than you.” He replied.
“Does it matter to you?” He asked repeating her question back to her.
She shrugged. It wasn’t like she’d ever really thought about it. It never felt like there was a huge age gap between them.
“You’ve been through a lot for only 18.” He said.
“I can handle it.”
“If it’s ever too much though. I want you to tell me.”
“Why, will you protect me Prince Fain?” She teased deflecting from the seriousness of his tone and he laughed.
“I like protecting you.” He replied. “Almost as much as I like doing this…” He added running his hand across her hip and down between her thighs. She gasped and he smiled feeling her move to allow him better access and realising that she wanted him again.
“I think you like it too.” He said smirking and moving his fingers so that they were now rubbing against her. She moaned feeling the instant pleasure at his touch. He slipped a finger inside and she reacted, pushing herself against him, pushing it deeper into her. He slipped a second in and continued pumping into her while his thumb circled and teased her clit. She gasped, pushing against the sheets, pushing against his chest as he brought her closer and closer to climax.
Suddenly she was screaming as the orgasm ripped through her, her back arched and her hands grasping his arm to hold herself as she writhed around uncontrollably.
She panted, lying next to him, waiting for her heart to stop racing.
“How do you do that?” She asked and he smiled.
“Do what?” He smirked.
“Have that effect on me?”
“It’s a secret.”
She laughed and kissed him.
“Old man.” She teased and he pulled her into his arms, breathing her scent, feeling the sweat still on her skin from what he’d done simply with just his touch.
“Are you happy?” He asked her and she nodded.
“Yes.” He said and he kissed her forehead.
“I love you.”
“I love you too little Fae.” He said before he drifted off to sleep, his arms still tight around her.
Alice lay listening to his breathing, feeling his chest moving in and out but it took her ages to drift off, ages to switch off. She kept thinking about the school, and her uncle, and then Hollingshurst. She hadn’t thought of it for so long. She wondered if the Housekeeper, Bates, was still there and the scary gardener too who had chased her. She wondered if they noticed she hadn’t come back. If they’d raised the alarm and if they were looking for her. Maybe they spoke about her in whispers the way they had spoken about her aunt’s disappearance. Was she just another story to add to the Gifford Saga and to share over dinner after a long day? The fitting end to a long saga of sadness and death that seemed to chase her family through the centuries. And then she remembered what Jelric had said, months ago, that her blood made her different to normal Fae. That her family were all somehow Fae. And that if she ever had children they would be Fae too. She sighed, and tried to shut the thoughts out, shut the internal monologue but it just kept coming until finally she fell asleep.
She dreamt she was lost and that she couldn’t find Fain.
She was searching for him, looking through all the rooms of Nind but the whole castle was empty. She ran out into the main gardens and there was no one there either. She called his name and it echoed around her, taunting her, mocking her. She ran into the forest, and found herself in a maze, with huge thick hedging that she couldn’t see over. It was like it was growing around her, enveloping her. She walked through it, finding herself continuously at dead ends. She called his name again and turned around but there was no one there. She was still alone.
Alone in the maze.
She started to run, started to search more frantically. She could feel her heart starting to race, starting to thump so loudly it was all she could hear. She turned a corner and then her heart stopped. She saw the Spectral. The same Spectral from the water. It screamed at her. It’s noise blasting through her skin. She tried to call her Magic but there was nothing. She tried again and she knew she was defenceless. She ran then, faster and faster, throwing herself round the turnings, ignoring the cuts as the thick branches ripped through her skin. Ripped through her clothing.
The Spectral was right behind her, she could hear it clawing at the air, clawing to get at her. She screamed but there was no escaping it. It was too fast and she had no Magic. Nothing to fight it. She turned a corner and there was nothing but hedge in front of her. It was a dead end. She was trapped. The Spectral was right behind her now, it didn’t need to scream, didn’t need to claw anymore because it knew it had won. It knew it had her trapped. She turned to face it, the fear in her barely containable and then it pounced.
She screamed and sat bolt up right.
“It’s okay. It’s just a dream.” Fain said trying to calm her. She was panting, shaking, and it felt like her skin was on fire.
“It was the Spectral.” She half whispered and he pulled her into his arms.
“You’re safe now. You’re safe.” He said and he could feel she was trembling uncontrollably.
“I couldn’t escape it.”
“You’re safe.” He said again and held her until he felt her breathing slowed and she fell asleep.
When she woke the next day she still felt uneasy like there was something in the back of her head, something not quite right and that she couldn’t put her finger on it. She rolled over expecting Fain to be there but there was no one there. The bed was empty.
She felt a rush of panic, it felt like it was her dream all over again and she threw the covers off, throwing on a silk robe to cover her nakedness and she ran into the main room.
Fain was sat going through papers and he looked up and frowned. She stopped when she saw him.
“What’s wrong?” He asked and he went to her.
She shook her head as if trying to shake the feeling from it. Shake the madness that had suddenly overtaken her.
“I don’t know.” She muttered. “I just feel funny.”
“Come sit down, have some tea.” He said guiding her to the couch. He poured a cup and passed it to her and she took a huge gulp, hoping that it would soothe whatever was wrong with her. Maybe she was going mad, she thought.
“What are they?” She asked looking at the papers around Fain and trying to distract herself.
“Dispatches.” He said and she couldn’t hide the smile that crept across her face.
“I knew you wouldn’t be able to switch off.” She laughed.
“I’m just keeping up with what’s going on.”
“Sure you are.” She teased and she took another sip of tea. It felt like the panic was subsiding and the dream was already fading away.
Fain opened a dispatch, read it, then tossed it onto a pile. He picked up another and did the same. Alice looked at the pile of discarded papers and wondered how long he had been sat there going through them all. He picked another, opened it and then his face changed.
“What is it?” Alice asked quietly. She could tell from the look on his face that it wasn’t good news.
“It’s Indyra. She’s gone missing.”
“We had her moved from Hardharst. But it seems they were attacked on route.”
“Who would attack her?”
“I don’t know.”
“Do you need to go back?” She asked and he shook his head. “You’re sure? I don’t mind..”
“Ridley is in charge.” He stated. “He’ll investigate it and send out a search party. Besides, there’s nothing to gain by taking her. If anyone thinks they can use her as leverage they’re a fool.” Alice felt a little sorry for Indyra. Whatever had happened to her, she hoped she was okay and wasn’t being harmed or worse. “Besides we’re here so you can recuperate…” He added with a smile.
“And would you say I’m recuperating well so far?” She asked grinning and knowing exactly what he was thinking.
“Hmm not well enough for my liking.” He replied getting up and carrying her back into his bed.
She laughed as he lay her back on the sheets and undid the tie on her robe.
“Now little Fae. I want to see you more relaxed…” He said as he dramatically opened one side and then the other revealing her completely naked to him.
“And how do you propose I do that?” She asked before biting her lip.
“Hmm, let’s start here.” He said leaning forward and taking her right breast, licking her nipple. She gasped feeling his saliva wet on her skin and she knew she was already desperate for him again. He took her other breast in his hand and began to tease it.
“Do you feel more relaxed?” He asked.
“Yes.” She gasped.
“You don’t sound it.” He replied and he ran his hand down between her legs. She opened them for him and he could feel how wet she already was. He ran his finger up along the outside of her, teasing her, and she arched her back. He took her hand and moved it down between her legs.
“Play with yourself.” He said and she frowned at him.
“I don’t..” She blushed and he looked at her.
She shook her head.
“Well this won’t do. How can you fully relax if you’ve never touched yourself?”
She shrugged. “So show me.”
He smiled and moved his hand back to hers. He placed his hand over hers, holding her fingers and moving them for her, showing her what to do. She moaned and grasped out at the sheets with her other hand to try to hold herself still. Using her fingers he circled her clit over and over. She groaned arching her back and opening her legs even more.
“Keep going.” He ordered as he released them and moved his own to inside her. She gasped. Unsure if she could keep it up but the pleasure was so much she didn’t want it to stop. He kept his fingers inside her thrusting and pushing against her and she tried to focus on what her own were doing. The wave that hit her felt like it came out of nowhere. Suddenly she was crying out, and writhing on the bed and Fain was holding her down, keeping her right there and until he was certain she could take no more.
She shuddered and he grinned at her.
“Definitely more relaxed now.” He said and she laughed. “Have you seriously never touched yourself?”
“No.” She said feeling embarrassed.
“Well now you know how, I am ordering you to start doing it.”
“Oh you’re ordering me are you?” She teased and he kissed her.
“As a High Prince of this realm I demand it.”
“Well, as a High Prince you know I have to follow all your orders.” She said sitting up and untying his breeches. He looked at her and she bit her lip.
She slowly yanked them down and then looked back at him.
“Anything else you’d like to order me to do Prince Fain?”
He smirked before placing his hands on her head and moving it down so that she took him in her mouth. She caressed him with her tongue and her lips closed around his shaft. He groaned but kept his hands on her head. She moved up and down, up and down, feeling him grow harder and harder and begin to thrust into her. And then she quickened it, moving faster and faster, feeling him respond more and then suddenly he was coming, gripping her head hard as he filled her mouth.
She swallowed and then moved back to lay beside him placing her hand on his chest.
“We should go see Prince Hal in a bit.” Fain said as he stroked her hair.
“What about his studies?”
“He studies in the morning. He’ll be done by now.”
“What time is it?” Alice asked confused.
“It’s past noon.”
“You slept all morning sleepyhead.”
“Why didn’t you wake me?”
“You’re meant to be recuperating.”
“Weren’t you bored?”
“I had the dispatches to catch up on.”
“Oh I see. So you let me sleep in while you sneak off to read your dispatches.” She teased and he laughed.
“Something like that.” He said before getting up and going to wash and dress.
The Crown Prince was out in the gardens when they went to see him. He was still surrounded by people but Alice got the feeling that Prince Hal ignored most of them.
Thankfully this time Alice decided that she wasn’t going to endure another hour of having her hair yanked and pulled and she just left it flowing as normal. Even the dress she choose was simpler, but she felt better, more comfortable and after already meeting the Crown Prince she felt safe enough that she wouldn’t be offending anyone if she wore it.
Prince Hal spotted them as they made their way to him and again went running up to Prince Fain.
“Uncle Fain, where have you been? I’ve been waiting all day for you.” He said pouting.
“What about your studies? Have you been good?”
“I heard you didn’t want to study your maps today…”
“But maps are boring.”
Fain sighed. “If you don’t do your studies we aren’t allowed to see you.”
“Says your father.” Fain replied and the Crown Prince pouted.
“Fine. If I study then you have to see me every day you’re here.” He said and Alice couldn’t keep the giggle in. It was like watching a little Uther in action.
“Agreed.” Fain said and Prince Hal held his hand out to him.
“Shake on it.”
Fain raised an eyebrow and then shook his hand.
“Can we go riding now? I want to show you my new horse. He’s so big.”
Fain glanced at Alice. “We can go for a ride.” She said to Prince Hal with a smile.
“Yes. I’m going to go to the stables right now and tell them.” Prince Hal said before charging off.
“We’ll meet you there.” Fain said before he could stop him and Alice laughed again.
“Do you mind?” He asked her.
“Not at all. He really wants to spend time with you.”
“And I want to spend time with you.” He said quietly pulling her to him and making her blush.
“Have you not grown bored of me yet?” She teased.
“Bored of you. I’ve not had you nearly enough to be bored of you.” He said and he kissed her.
“Well aren’t you a sight for sore eyes.” A woman said behind them and they both turned.
Alice flushed suddenly realising that he’d kissed her in front of everyone. He wasn’t even trying to be discreet anymore.
“Hello Cait.” Fain said and Alice knew instantly who she was. High King Uther’s mistress.
She was tall, almost as tall as Fain, with striking red hair that flowed all the way down her back and had curves to die for. She was undeniably beautiful and somehow Alice could tell already that she was the complete opposite of Indyra. She smiled at Alice.
“You must be the Fae Girl I’ve heard so much about.”
“Pleased to finally put a name to you as well as a face.” She said. “I’m Cait.”
Alice smiled and then Cait looked Prince Fain up and down with a slight smirk.
“And you Prince Fain. Are you happy to be back at Nind?”
“I’m always happy to be at Nind and to see you Cait...” He said. “But we have just agreed to take Prince Hal out for a ride…”
“In that case don’t let me keep you.” She smiled.
“Unless..” Alice said looking at Fain. “Would you like to come with us. I’m sure Crown Prince Hal would love you to.”
Cait smiled and looked at Fain as if for his permission. “Come if you would like Cait.” He said.
“I would love too.” She stated.
They walked to the stables and Cait grilled Fain on how his brother was. Alice walked beside Fain, feeling the heat of the sun and hoping that it wouldn’t be too hot when riding. For all the promise of snow it suddenly felt like they were in the middle of summer and the heat was stifling. She blinked and for a second it was like the dream was back in her head.
“Are you okay?” He asked and she nodded.
“It’s nothing. I just tripped.” She said feeling embarrassed. “Sorry.”
“Don’t apologise.” He said and he took her hand. Cait smiled at her and then continued her barrage of questions about the High King. Fain answered each one but sideways he glanced at Alice. She looked suddenly tired, he thought, despite the amount of sleep she’d had.
Crown Prince Hal was already terrorising the stable staff by the time they got there, demanding they pull the biggest horses out for their ride.
“We don’t need war horses for a ride in the woods.” Fain stated and Prince Hal opened his mouth to argue.
“Which one is your horse?” Alice asked distracting him and he instantly ran to a dapple grey that was already tacked up and waiting.
“It’s this one. His name is Blue.” He said stroking the animal. “Do you like him?”
“He’s very beautiful.” Alice replied. “And very big.”
“He’s a proper horse for a proper Prince.” Prince Hal stated and Fain rolled his eyes behind him.
“Come on Princeling, let’s get you on this big horse of yours.” He said picking him up and putting him in the saddle.
They rode just outside the moat and around the castle, keeping by the tree line but not actually entering the woods. Prince Hal spent his time pointing out different plants and animals and asking Alice if she had them in her world too.
“I think you’re wearing her out Hal.” Cait said gently and Alice shook her head.
“It’s fine, honestly.” Alice stated smiling.
“Well you’re wearing me out.” Fain said. “Why don’t you tell us what you learnt today.”
Prince Hal groaned. “Do I have to?”
“Yes.” Fain said and Hal sighed before reeling off everything he remembered as fast as he could.
Something caught Alice’s eye amongst the trees and she frowned. Was it her imagination of did it look like there was someone there, she thought. Watching them. She looked harder and then she saw them. The same person from the camp. The other Fae. She felt her heart stop and then they were gone. Vanished just like last time.
We should go back, she thought to Fain and he looked quickly at her. What is it, he thought and she shook her head slightly. Don’t scare Prince Hal, it’s nothing serious, but just in case, she thought. He nodded and guided his horse back to the castle without the Crown Prince noticing.
They returned to the stables and Fain lifted Prince Hal from his horse before helping Alice and Cait to dismount.
“Will you have dinner with me? Please Uncle Fain.” Prince Hal said and Alice had to look away not to laugh. She felt Fain’s eyes on her and his thought, do you mind? She shook her head, why would I mind? She thought.
“Okay. But only if Alice and Cait are allowed to join us.”
Prince Hal nodded. “We can all eat together.” He declared.
Fain waited till they were back in his room before he asked her what had happened.
“It’s hard to explain. But I saw someone. I’ve seen them twice now.”
“I don’t know who it is, but I think they’re Fae.”
He narrowed his eyes, “Are you sure?”
“Do you know what they want?”
She shook her head. “I don’t know anything beyond seeing them and knowing that they’re watching us. Watching me.” She replied and he nodded. “What does it mean?”
“I don’t know.” Fain said. “But I don’t like it.”
Alice sighed looking away. Her gut told her something was off, something was wrong, but the way the Fae had looked at her made her feel like they weren’t a danger, but it also felt like they were after something and it unnerved her.
“Let’s go eat. Cait and Hal will be waiting for us by now.” Fain said and she smiled following him back out while trying to shake the uneasy feeling that had started to grow in the pit of her stomach.