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To Love Or Not To Love
Delenta straddled a stool slowly nursing a goblet of wine. He had woken that morning still stiff and sore, but he could move on his own again. He had even considered going out for a lap or two around the city. Though, his mind was not on his back at the moment, it was on Emille. Sure different facets of her moved to the front of his concentration, but for now, he was stuck on how to repay the kind woman.
Emille came inside, looking around, and when she saw Delenta, she sat down next to him, touching a wing gently, "Feeling better?" she asked, her fingers lightly running over the edge of his wings.
Delenta nodded, his wings flexing involuntarily, "I am, thanks to you." Gods, he was always playing the thank you game. He pulled the wing away from Emille momentarily, stretching it out and laying it across her shoulders, "I can move again." He said with half a smile, an idea slowly entering his head.
Emille smiled and said, "Good." She moved a bit closer, to get under his wing and then smiled wider, "I suppose I can say you've taken me under your wing?" She ordered a cup of tea, then, with the works, and then smiled. What? No whiskey? Nah, too early!
Delenta shook his head a grin playing across his face, "I'd say that you are the one who has taken -me- under your wing." Delenta slid a few coins onto the table, in order to pay for the drinks. He turned, looking to at Emille, almost as if he was gauging her weight. "How would you like to see the city from the sky?"
Emille looked at him and arched a brow, smiling, "From the sky? Can you carry me?"
Delenta shrugged, "Carry you? My dear, You would be but another feather among my wings. I can carry you." He stood, holding out a hand, "Milday?"
Emille smiled and nodded, taking his hand and standing up, "Let's go, then. I've always wanted to take to the sky."
Delenta laughed, "Lets go then." He lead Emille outside and into an alleyway. Facing away from her he spoke, "Climb onto my back, right between the wings, That way you will have a better view." He knelt down as to make it easier for her, "If you ever get scared Emille, just say so and I can land."
Emille climbed on his back, arms and legs wrapping around him. Funny, she didn't think this would be the way she'd ever wrap around him. She grinned and said, near his ear, "I can handle it. I won't be scared."
Delenta looked back at Emille, his face close to her's, "You say that now." A grin crept onto his lips. Rising he leapt upward, and began to flap, powerful stokes that sent them shooting into the air. Soon the tavern they had been at was naught but a brown room among other brown roofs. Reaching a good hight he stiffened his wings gliding on thermals. He kept his body horizontal so Emille could peer over his shoulder at the city. "What do you think?"
Emille smiled and said against his ear, quietly, "If I had wings like yours I'd never come down." She rested her chin on his shoulder and smiled a little, enjoying the view...and the warmth of his body.
Delenta smiled the extra warmth was nice at this altitude, so was the companionship. Flying was solitary, but with another, it was made into another experience entirely. "Trust me, It is much more enjoyable with some company." As he spoke he turned his head up towards Emille, their noses only a few inches apart.
Emille smiled and turned her head a little, her nose brushing his. A nuzzle!? She'd claim it was accidental. She just rested on his back and finally said, "The company is nice. Very nice."
Delenta glided further, heading towards a nearby mountain, one that overlooked both the city and the sea. "That really means something you know." He closed his eyes and drifted onward, banking now and then to find a better updraft. In around a minute the two found themselves over the large spire of earth and rock that served as the supreme vantage point for the surrounding land. "The sun should set soon. Would you like to watch it? I hear it causes fantastic colors on the ocean." He circled the peak, examining the ground below.
Emille smiled, "Yeah, why not?" She reached a hand back and brushed some of her hair from her face before she said, "What do you mean? That it really means something? Dont people enjoy your company, Del?" Yup, she shortened it.
Delenta drifted to the ground and knelt to let Emille off before turning and speaking. "Truth be told, not many have stay with me long enough the realize that my heritage does not instantly make me evil." He shrugged and scuffed a foot, walking to a moss covered stone that over looked the ocean, and sitting. "You took that time. Or so I hope." He patted the stone beside him.
Emille sat down beside him and then said, "Well...I figure I should give everyone the benefit of the doubt. I mean, really, you haven't tried to hurt me, or anything, so...why be ready to slice your head off?" She grinned a little and leaned back on the rock, on her hands.
Delenta leaned back as well, allowing his fingers to brush hers, their hands overlapping slightly. "Well, Emille, I am glad you did so." He smiled and looked over at her, "I think this is perforable to not having a head." Delenta turned his attention back to the setting sun, as the orb dipped into the ocean a beautiful mixture of golds, reds and pale purples lit the sky. casting a subdued ambiance over everything. "He looked back at Emille. "Beautiful." Did he speak of the sunset of of Emille. How about both?
Emille gave him a small smile and then leaned up a little, "It is pretty, isn't it?" She licked her lips a little and then smiled, leaning forward again to wrap her arms around her knees. "I could stay here all night."
Delenta smiled back, scooting closer and wrapping a large dark wing about Emille, shielding her from the breeze that swept across the mountain. "What makes you think I spoke of the sunset?"
Emille looked at him and smiled, "You weren't?" She arched a brow and smiled wider, "Then what were you speaking of, Delenta?"
Delenta smiled too, lifting a delicate finger he gently poked Emille on the nose, "You my dear. Who else could rival the sight the sun has given us, but you?" His eyes twinkled with mirth. The feeling he had while around Emille were like ones he had never felt before. And he liked them.
Emille looked at him and smiled, "Me, hm?" She grabbed his hand, taking his fingers and lacing them with hers. "Why me? Sunsets will always be beautiful, but I'll get older."
Delenta nodded, pausing for a moment, as if thinking, "Ah, you see. Anyone may gaze upon a sunset, admire its beauty, and then know they shall see it again. You are not like that." He gently squeezed her hand, "You are the picture of life. You shine like the sun, but you are the present, always and forever, the sun is in the past, and surly will be in the future."
Emille smiled and said, "You are quite a man, Delenta. Well, demon. But still..." she trailed off and smiled, looking away. "I've never had anyone talk to me like you do."
Delenta smiled his thumb making a small circle on her wrist. "I... I never have had anyone who deserved to be talked to like this." It was a weak sentence, but Delenta could not thing of anything to say, he was too caught up in the moment. SO caught up he failed to notice the ominous clouds approaching from behind. He didn't become aware until the first raindrop his hit head, "Oh drats, Now why did that have to come along and ruin everything?" He moved closer to Emille, his leg now pressed against hers. Delenta shifted his wing forming a feathered shelter above the woman keeping her dry while his other wing blocked most of the rain from hitting him.
Emille smiled and said, "No, it didn't ruin anything. It just...gives us a reason to get closer," she said as she moved closer, looking at him, so close to him now. She licked her lips once and then said, "We should find somewhere to get out of this rain soon, before it gets worse." She glanced around and said, "I think I see a cave opening."
Delenta looked about, not seeing the cave first off, "I do not see it, I'll follow you." He stood, still keeping a protective wing above and about Emille, He eld out a hand for her and gave a half grin, "I suppose you are right."
Emille smiled and kept his hand in hers, then led him down a few slopes until they were in front of a large cave mouth. Now the rain was coming down in sheets and she ducked in, just as lightning flashed. "I suppose we should stay here - wait it out." She said as she sat down on a rock nearby and then looked up at him, smiling a bit. "It's kind of neat though, isn't it?"
Delenta nodded in agreement, his face lit by a flash of lighting. "Storms can be wonderful, sheer power, wielded my nature in a way that no being can ever duplicate." He sat on the ground below and of to the left of Emille, leaning back against the rock. Water pooled off his wings soaking into the dry sand of the cave floor. Farther back he noticed was a what seemed to be a large patch of moss, it was also elevated to any water running into the cave would not get them wet. Delenta stood, moved near the entrance and shook his wings. Dryer, he moved back to Emille and scooped her up carrying her to the moss and gently setting her down there, "It looked more comfortable back on something soft and away from the wet floor."
Emille let out a gasp of surprise as he just...picked her up, but then she laughed and when he set her down she said, "It is, yes." And it was true that it was dryer. It was starting to slant, the rain, and come into the cave. She sat there, watching the storm, listening to the thunder, and finally said, "I love storms. They may not be in my nature, but I love them."
Delenta nodded, not saying anything quite yet, nor making any action, just sitting there, looking out to sea. Quietly he shifted, rolling onto his stomach, propping his head up on his hands. He tossed a glance towards Emille, a soft smile on his lips, then he looked back out of the cave. The rain had turned to sleet, proving that winter was not over yet. As the sleet fell, slowly turning to soft smooth snow, the ocean began to fade into a hazy white fog.
Emille smiled a little and then looked down at him before she put a hand on his back, slowly stroking the base of his wings, and then up along the edges. "I never thought I'd like touching a demon wing." She liked touching him. It calmed her down.
Delenta closed his eyes, enjoying the feeling of her hand caressing the base of his wings. "People give the word demon too much power." he turned his head side ways, glancing up at her, "It is naught but a race, no more distinct than human or elf." He laughed lightly, "there are just more of you, which makes us an oddity."
Emille smiled a little and said, "I guess I'm more of an oddity because...I could stroke these wings all night," she said as she let her fingers rub his wings, gently, back and forth, memorizing the texture of him.
Delenta smiled up at Emille, His own hand moving out. Slowly his finger tips brushed against her shin before moving back to support his head. "I see nothing wrong with oddities, being that we both are." He smiled then, eyes closing once more, her hand slowly moving across his wings, igniting the nerves where ever she went.
Emille smiled and then, as his eyes closed, she leaned down and gently kissed the base of his neck, then pulled up and wondered if she'd crossed a line she shouldn't have. It was impulse, I swear!
Delenta stiffened momentarily as he felt her warm lips press into the back of his neck. He stiffened not because he was repulsed, but by the system wide shock that coursed through his body. He opened his eyes slowly, no longer feeling her hand upon his wings. "Why?" He tilted his head questioningly, looking at her knee, "Why did you stop?" His voice was a whisper, hardly audible over the storm, but it was clear. "You didn't need to."
Emille looked at him and slowly moved down to her stomach too and said, "What do you want me to keep doing? The wings or kisses?" she asked, so close to him that, well, she could kiss him any minute, but for now he could feel her breath on his skin, her hair brushing his cheek and even, at one point, feel her eyelashes on his throat as she seemed to be examining him, trying to get a feel for him.
Delenta didn't reply with words, instead he lifted one large wing and covered Emille's body with it, turning his face towards her's, he gently pressed his lips against her forehead. Pulling back slowly he watched her face intently, looking for any sign that had done something unacceptable.
Emille swallowed sharply. She moved forward and kissed him, soft on the mouth, just resting hers against his, a prolonged peck, her arm coming up and around just so she could touch him.
Delenta closed his eyes slowly as Emille's lips pressed into his, He breathed through his nose, inhaling the soft sent of Emille's hair. The light freshness, relaxed him. Brought upon him a greater state of calm, one that he had not experienced before. Slowly he moved a hand up, gently touching her neck and ear, brushing a few strands of hair from her face.
Emille closed her eyes, opening her mouth to deepen the kiss, pressing closer to him as she made soft, encouraging noises when he touched her neck and her face. She slid her hand down his back, between his wings, then over the wing closest to her.
Delenta slowly wrapped his hand around her neck, fingers interlocking with her lustrous blond hair. He felt her mouth opening and obliged her, not having ever kissed before someone before. It half felt natural, yet half alien. Curving his wing he used it to press Emille close. The nails on his fingers gently brushing down the back of her neck.
Emille wouldn't have guessed in a million years he'd never kissed someone. He was a demon. He'd surely had plenty of lovers and such. Hell, Emille had had a few in her short life span. She turned on her side, so she could press close to him and then, after a while, she pulled back and looked at him, breathing hard and watching his face.
Delenta breathed deeply as Emille broke the embrace, not because he had too, but because deeper need told him too. His normally pale face was toned with pinks and reds, taking on a normal flesh tone. His eyes, however were no longer their standard coal-black. They had shifted to a milky white, marbled and swirling. A slight smile twitched at the corner of his mouth, "I... I must admit to you," He spoke in a whisper, but their proximity made hearing him easy. "I must admit that..." He closed his eyes, "That you are the first."
Emille looked at him for a minute and then smiled, "How can that be? You're...so much older than I am? You're ageless and I'm your first?" She smiled and then ran her fingers through his hair now.
Delenta shook his head, "I was ageless in the realm of demons. But I was... sent here. In the age of a new born. Seven and twenty years ago. Here I will age as through your years, and I will likely die by your years unless I am given re-admitance to the realms of Chaos, Though I doubt I would go if it was offered." He blushed a deeper shade of red, "Before, I have never felt for anyone, demon or other. But now..." He trailed off, his meaning implied.
Emille nodded a bit and then said, "What makes me so different?" She touched his cheek. "Really? Be honest with me. What happened that made the demon sweet on the hunter?"
Delenta opened and shut his mouth, trying to decide on what made Emille so much different than the others. "Perhaps the old mantra of opposites attract may be used here. You are human, female, and hold grudge against Demons. This should make me, in almost every way your enemy, but... but when I first approached you, you acted kindly, not with malice nor enmity." He reached out, touching her hand softly, "I know it may not make sense to you. But to me, it makes all the sense in the world." Delenta chewed on his lower lip, "What about you? If you don't mind the question?"
Emille said, "I don't know." She laced her fingers through his. "I suppose it was your...nature. I don't know what you're like on your demon plane, but here you're...kind and so not like a demon I'm used to. You should be ripping my throat out, by all accounts."
Delenta shuddered slightly, "The very thought repulses me." He looked at her, his milky eyes clearing , revealing crystal blue beneath them. He knew not of this happening, for his vision remained the same. "So..." He frowned slightly, "What does this mean?"
Emille smiled a little and then said, "I don't know. To be honest, I'm terrified of what it could mean." She rested her head on his shoulder and sighed.
Delenta nodded, his eyes closing as he rested his head in the crook of her neck. "I fear for you as well. You are supposed to kill demons. How would it look..." He didn't want to continue with this train of thought. Not now, not ever.
Emille nodded and then said, "Maybe we should...stop this notion. It could be dangerous for the both of us," she whispered against his ear.
Delenta sighed, pulling back slightly, resting an hand on the side of Emille's head, "I fear not for myself, for I would have nothing to be ashamed of. I fear for you. And yet..." He let his hand drop. "I do not know if I could bear the separation. Your presence keeps me calm, focused. I don't want too loose you or what you bring to me." He shook his head, "Now I just sound selfish."
Emille looked at him and smiled a little. "There's always an alternative." She leaned closer and wrapped her arms around him and said, "We could always keep it a secret."
Delenta let his arms hang at his sides, "You have no Idea how much I want to accept that proposal. You have no idea." He reached up and grasped Emille's shoulders, " Emille, I want you to be safe, and if it got out that you were secretly having a relation ship with a demon then the repercussions would be even more severe than if you and I hid nothing." He swallowed hard, pecking her on the cheek, "I only want what is best for you."
Emille sighed against his neck and then said, "So what do we do? I don't know what's good for me." She leaned her head back and then groaned, "Maybe...we should forget this happened, you know? Maybe...but I don't want to."
Delenta nodded, oh how complicated this had become. "Emille, If you wish it, You can be back at the tavern in under 5 minutes and you shall never see me again." His voice was full of pain as he spoke. He would never forgive himself for doing such a thing, but he still would. If it kept Emille safe. "But I must say, I will not, cannot, forget you, or what there was, is, between us."
Emille said, "I don't want to never see you again. I'd rather hide what we have than risk being burned at the stake for it." She raised her hands and touched his cheeks, then leaned forward and kissed him, deep and passionate.
Delenta felt his heart drop, the kiss was a kiss now, the passion he had felt earlier gone. He pulled back. "If I must leave you, I can continue on like this." A solitary tear rolled from his crystal blue eyes, even as the began to cloud over, tinging black. Standing he breathed out slowly. "There is, however, an alternative." The idea sprang into his mind, but just as quickly he snuffed it out. He had no right to ask such a thing of Emille.
Emille arched a brow and sat up a little, looking at him, moss in her hair now. "What? Tell me? It can't hurt to have options, right?"
Delenta shook his head, eyes closed. "I... I cannot ask this of you." It went against everything he knew, everything he had worked for. And everything he had promised.
Emille arched a brow higher and said, "Ask what? Ask it. The most I can do is say no, Del," she said as she smiled and touched his cheek a little. "Come on...tell me."
Delenta sighed and sat back down , clasping his hands together, “This will seem extremely selfish, but... You could always come with me. No harm would be done to you, lest I die. But. I... I do not want to ask you to decide such a thing when you have a life and home here. I dare not take away such things." He stood walking to the mouth of the cave, "I should take you back now, there is a lull in the storm." His words were drenched with regret, but they were firm.
Emille looked at him, and then said, "Where would you take me?" she asked, brushing her hair back from her face. "To...your home realm? I don't know if I could stomach that."
Delenta shook his head, "Even if I could return, I doubt I would chose to do so." He looked back at Emille, his heart in his eyes, "Perhaps Coldera. I know a princess who would give us rooms in the castle. And if not there, then anyplace that would be safe." He sighed, still kneeling at the cave entrance.
Emille looked at him for a minute and said, "But we'd be...shunned as soon as people found out what I was. I am what I am. Can you really be with me while I go out and kill your brethren?"
Delenta shook his head, "First, those in Coldera are excepting, they are not so rigidly bound to old tradition as other folk. And second, those demon whom you hunt are no brethren of mine. I would rather be by your side helping you." He turned around, his eyes a marble mixture between black and blue, another tear rolling down his face.
Emille looked at him and said, "Del..." she got up, moved over toward him, wiped a tear from his cheek and then said, "What's wrong? What's really going on?" She wrapped her arms around him, holding him close.
Delenta stood there shaking slightly, he breathed deeply before speaking in a haggard voice, "I.. I just do not want to lose you." It was as simple as that, and yet, he was willing to sacrifice this in order to keep Emille happy. "Look, you were right. I should get you back to the Tavern and leave." He gulped down a sob and moved to kiss her upon the head but stopped. Tears in his eyes, the demon motioned to teh cave exit, "Shal... shall..." He was unable to finish his sentence."
Emille arched a brow and said, "I never said anything about you leaving me anywhere. If I had my way, we'd stay here," she said as she grabbed his hand and tugged him back into the cave. "Get back in here."
Delenta held his ground. "We cannot stay here forever. And when we must leave, If I cannot see you, then I cannot do this." He shrugged out of Emille's grip. "I.. I love you, as if it weren't already pretty damn obvious." He wiped his face with the back of his hand, "Emille...." He stopped speaking walked up to her, kneeling before her and holding her hands in his, "All I ask is that you be happy with your choice." He let go of her hand, bowed his head and waited, his black wings draped in the mud, dirtied and wet.
Emille looked down at the ground and said, "I didn't say you couldn't see me. This is just...a lot to process. This morning I woke up alone and now I want nothing more than to go to sleep with you." She leaned her head back and rubbed her face. "If you take me back to that tavern, Delenta, you're staying with me."
Delenta looked up, a confused look upon his face, "But what of your reputation? Your job?" Do not throw caution to the wind because of your feelings." He was not helping his own case, and he knew it. Yet, he felt it was his duty to do so. Standing, he looked into the woman's eyes, his were beginning to move back to that newfound blue state. "If you are sure, then I will stay with you for as long as you wish, Emille." He laid a gentle hand upon each of her shoulders and leaned in, resting his forehead against her's.
Emille smiled, "Maybe we should...go somewhere by ourselves, for a while, just get away. Learn about each other and everything."
Delenta smiled and nodded, "My wings but await your command." He kissed Emille on the forehead and stepped back. It felt right. It felt perfect. "Have you in mind any places?"
Emille smiled and shook her head, "No. Just...anywhere." And then she fell into his arms and kissed him properly.
Delenta nodded kissing her back, he picked up Emille and laid her back on the moss bench, laying cross wise to her so she could use his wings as a pillow. "Goodnight Emille, I love you."
As her eyes closed, Emille murmured, “G’night love.”