Hazy Shade of Winter

Description:  tag; iris 

Amets Moralez

    Purple Dusk to Sapphire
  • Black Widow Warlord Prince
  • Played By: Salem

    Territory First Escort
    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    25 Posts    0 marks
Hazy Shade of Winter
« on: April 25, 2019, 07:49:53 PM »

He had to ignore the annoyed twist that had caused him to burn one web already, the second coming dangerously close to joining it's predecessor. Amets should have known better however, weaving webs while not so silently sulking about the courts extended guests. Even calling them extended guests had been a minor rebellion on his part, petty as it were but he hadn't been in the most charitable of moods anyway.

Less so with River existing in the same space as him as had been the case since his return to Little Terreille. Locks meant nothing and as much as he'd toyed with the idea of bribing the lutrani to be furry guards but that meant welcoming the little hellions into his space in exchange.

Neither were ideal situations and Amets had retreated to his own space out of necessity.

Just as necessity had pushed him into finally abandoning both the unfinished web and his workroom. Necessity made it easier for Amets to rationalize seeking out Irisviel. It was necessity, not at all an irrational need to complain and sulk openly. That was what he'd told himself right up until he'd been outside of Iris's rooms, an offering of snacks in hand and waiting, suddenly, childishly unsure of whether he was allowed such leisurely trespasses any more.

Hesitation twisted like a knife that nearly drove him back to his workroom. Nearly but too late, the creak of the door making him tense. "Irisviel...good evening." Why did he feel so much like the child that had spent months trailing her around the coven now?
 

Irisviel Crag

    Red to Gray
  • Black Widow Queen
  • Played By: dergon

    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    66 Posts    121 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2019, 05:54:36 AM »

Irisviel was surprised to find him outside her door. Surprise gave way to worry that she had forgotten an appointment. Official business was the only time she saw her escort now. He had grown reclusive since his return from Shalador. She’d half expected him to accompany Lady Araceli’s court home when they had gone, but Amets had stayed. Mostly in his rooms.

”Good evening, Amets.” Iris squeezed the carved door handle to keep from frowning. She couldn’t remember anything she might have forgotten. Once upon a time she’d had someone to remind her of these things. Now she only had her calendar, and a court that was falling apart around her ears. Irisviel was on the verge of borrowing from Wren to fill the spaces.

Forcing herself to smile, Iris pulled the door wider. ”Did you want to come in?” She asked, inviting him into the empty room. Iris slept mostly alone now except for the occasional lutrani. Or Daithi, but he was still hesitant to come inside. She couldn’t blame the wolf. Court was very different from the wild. Though perhaps not Iris’ over much. Leaving the door, and the choice, to Amets, Iris returned to her seat, and her tray.

Some days eating along felt less lonely than eating with the others. The missing faces made her heart ache, but she would not discuss them. There were reasons, and good ones, for their absence. She had not learned her lesson the first time, when she’d sent Amets away. Or thought the pain a fair price for what needed doing, and who needed protecting.

”Want some?” She tempted. Irisviel was so very grateful the braids had not stayed long.

Amets Moralez

    Purple Dusk to Sapphire
  • Black Widow Warlord Prince
  • Played By: Salem

    Territory First Escort
    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    25 Posts    0 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2019, 06:37:54 PM »
The forced smile was another reminder of why Amets had retreated to his room. Whatever had broken between them hurt more than River’s constant presence. Still he could swallow it down, bury it just enough that it couldn’t, wouldn’t hurt if he didn’t go digging. And Amets had no intention of digging at his own wounds ever if it could be avoided.

Iris’s room was still as he remembered, just emptier and he half expected to see a lutrani or five popping out to mug him for his gifts. No such attack though and he couldn’t help but feel guilty. What had happened in his absence? He should’ve stayed in Little Terreille. It was his turn to frown as he finally closed the door behind him.

She already had food, of course. That would explain her absence at dinner, previous absences too or at least he hoped it did. Anything less and that’d be another failure on his part too. Stinging pride kept his fussing in check, a wry smile at the offer as he sank down opposite her, “I was about to ask the same.” Small things filched from the kitchens that he’d hear about later but now presented for Iris. “We can trade and say we’re even.” He paused, considering before continuing, “And I can apologize...for not being a proper escort as well.”

Irisviel Crag

    Red to Gray
  • Black Widow Queen
  • Played By: dergon

    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    66 Posts    121 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2019, 07:10:38 PM »

She turned a guilty smile to the small meal spread across her table. ”Ah. Well.” Unable to face him, she brushed her hair down behind her ear and picked at a thread sticking out of the corner of one of the throw pillows. She hadn’t picked them, and thought most of them were both ugly and in the way, but Iris left them. The sofa had belonged to Magda, and it seemed wrong to throw it out. One day she might banish it to a room she didn’t live in, but not just yet.

Amets sat across from her and began adding his own offerings to the food the maid had brought. Iris laughed, hand running the length of her face as she did. ”I think we will be, if we trade fairly.” Of course he had brought her food. It was a common offering in the household, especially with so many dark Jewels inhabiting it. And so much less food to be shared throughout it. Iris never wore her Grey except when she had to meet with foreigners. Its power held in reserve. Untapped so she wouldn’t have to feed it.

In fact, most household work was done without craft now. A landen mistress brought in to show them the way.

Eyes sharp, Iris put aside her wandering thoughts and paid attention to her escort. Her First Escort; the remaining pillar of her triangle. ”Amets.” She soothed, craft and hand alike reaching across the table to touch him. Food a less needful sustenance than this. Simple contact. ”It’s been hard on all of us.” He had gone and come back again at her request. The separation had been worse than Irisviel had anticipated. All of her desperate to trust him but unable to. An unable to bear being apart either.

They had been together so long.

”I’m sorry it had to be done, but I appreciate all you sacrificed for the territory.” He had proven his loyalty to Little Terreille in full. Brought back food and trade rights that would keep them from starving to death. For now. So Iris let him keep his secrets. He’d always had them, along with his silences. But some questions needed asked for both their sanities. ”Do you want to go back?” Was he unhappy serving her? Had she broken what might have been perfect, reliable trust, out of paranoia and need?

Amets Moralez

    Purple Dusk to Sapphire
  • Black Widow Warlord Prince
  • Played By: Salem

    Territory First Escort
    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    25 Posts    0 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2019, 09:33:46 PM »
The laughter was a comfort, however small and Amets relaxed or started to. The creep of craft drawing less attention than Iris’s hand on his. “I know it has been but...I still need to apologize for how I’ve acted since I returned.” An apology was easier than nothing. Far easier too than the reminder of just how far things had slid between them.

For the territory. It had been for the territory. “Of course, I’m always happy to be at the territory’s disposal.” Months of convincing himself of that had been the only thing to stop him from walking out to sea. That didn’t stop the bile rising in his throat. Did he have a right to be bitter when it had been for Little Terreille, pride be damned? Was it even bitterness? Or was it wounded pride that gnawed at him if not something else entirely?

“Go back to Shalador?” Years of practiced calm was beginning to slip away and Amets almost pulled away. Why would he want to leave his home? “I didn’t want to leave in the first place but I did because you wanted me to. You needed me to leave so I did.” And he’d spent months miserable for it too. That far away garden likely still reeked, temper and pain sunken deep for months on end. Araceli would have to be insane to welcome him back after that.

“I came back for you, Irisviel. Why would I want to go back?” It was a slip, temper melting to hurt and back again. Bitterness now too, bitterness and hurt twisted his stomach into knots but he couldn’t bring himself to pull away. “Did you-- Do you want me gone then?” Amets wasn’t entirely certain he wanted the answer. “What did I do wrong, Iris?” The whirl of emotions threatening to strangle him and he sank back against the cushions, deflating under the weight of it all.

“What did I do wrong?”
 

Irisviel Crag

    Red to Gray
  • Black Widow Queen
  • Played By: dergon

    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    66 Posts    121 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2019, 10:21:16 PM »

”Apology accepted.” No need to forgive him. Amets had done nothing in need of forgiving. There were other escorts, and he was always ready and available when it was really important. He didn’t have to be with her always. Fingers squeezing, Iris tried to reassure him of that fact. She didn’t always have to be attended. The loneliness wouldn’t kill her. It drove her. If her territory was settled, peaceful, fruitful again, surely her court would reflect that.

Smile sad, Iris tilted her head, studying him with shrewd eyes. ”Willing, maybe, but not always happy.” She wasn’t either. Some of it was bitter work, impossible to enjoy but still in need of doing. Like sending away or otherwise losing those close to her. This time she could let go if he wanted to leave. She’d learned how, even if she held on to his hand when she offered him in the choice. She could let go too.

She could.

He nearly did. She felt the flex of bone and tendon beneath her hand. But he didn’t, temper fraying as he answered her question with an almost refusal. ”Yes.” All of it was true. But she’d thought he’d been more willing. Especially after the incident with the younger Lady Ribeiro. His denial turned vehement. The outpouring of emotions surprising because of its source. He’d always been so calm.

”Amets!” A glass over turned as she grabbed for him. He escaped, falling back into his seat as if she’d struck him. Cursing, Iris dropped a napkin on the spreading water and rose. Always brisk in movement, she rounded the table and threw herself into the seat beside him. Craft and hands settling on him. ”Amets.” Softer this time. Iris threaded her fingers through his, to anchor them. ”I don’t want you gone.” First things first. ”Quite the opposite, my friend.” She promised him.

Sighing, Iris dug into the root of the thing. ”You’ve done nothing wrong. I just-“ Had lacked faith. But it was hard to be sure after seeing her queen die that way. On the blade of a man they had both trusted. ”You’ve always been secretive,” she admitted, quick to add, ”as is your right. But I couldn’t stand it. That hiding you do. Not then.” Irisviel still didn’t know what his secrets were or what it was Amets held in reserve. But so long as it didn’t threaten the territory, she didn’t care, not anymore.

She needed one staunch ally by her side, and Amets had been there for so long. Trusted with her Jewels during her moontime, and her safety always. The cool calm to her pent up energy. ”I’m sorry it hurt you, and sorrier I can’t take it back because it had to be done.”

Amets Moralez

    Purple Dusk to Sapphire
  • Black Widow Warlord Prince
  • Played By: Salem

    Territory First Escort
    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    25 Posts    0 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2019, 05:55:21 AM »
No further retreats, the cushions already pressed hard into his back and Amets watched the drinks spread with only the faintest interest. Pity for the waste but more focused on the queen reaching for him. “...you’ve an odd way of showing it...” It was a grumble, choked out around attempts to rein in his own emotions and failing. Attempts that were making it hard to sit still. Restless energy with no outlet beyond trying not to crawl out of his skin to avoid and get closer to Iris all at once.

Secrets would be his undoing but secrets had been easier to keep for the duration of his service. Burying his feelings under and in that thick layer of secrets had kept him sane. Pining had gotten him no where at the coven and now, now it was leaving him raw on all the wrong edges. Weary but not retreating, a fine tremble running through his hands as he struggled to strangle down the desire to retreat further.

“You could’ve asked and I wouldn’t have lied to you.” He could’ve said something too, had almost said something too many times to count. That rejection would have been easier than this. “You’re the only one I wouldn’t dream of lying to.”

Calm, Amets knew the taste of that craft from Iris. Never turned on him but he knew it and he chaffed at it now. Chaffed and settled just slightly, leaning into Iris despite his better judgment. “It wasn’t that you sent me away that hurt.” He sighed, “You sent me away without...anything.” That one had hurt the most, a sudden dismissal that had left him sore and still smarting. “You could have told me why and I would’ve gone anyway.”

Irisviel Crag

    Red to Gray
  • Black Widow Queen
  • Played By: dergon

    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    66 Posts    121 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2019, 07:48:46 AM »

Had she forgotten somewhere along the way what he was? No. The flavor of his castes had been too much a constant. Familiar as her own, since they shared one of them, and other were complimentary. Irisviel had forgotten that beneath his control was the same volatility that lived in all Blood. Warlord Princes especially. He'd gone peaceably enough, if resentfully.

"How was I to know your hiding wasn't pining for another place?" Another time she would have teased him for his choice in Rut partner, but she could feel the unraveling of his control like silk against her skin. Beautiful and deceptive, so easily rent. It was there in his hands as well. A shiver that made the pale hairs on Iris' arms rise in warning.

"I could have, but I didn't want to know." Iris lifted a knee up onto the chaise, hooking her ankle behind the other knee. Thumb passing over the pulse at his wrist, Iris shook her head. "I didn't think you would lie, but I was afraid of what you were hiding. It seemed better not to know, than to know the wrong thing." Something that would require more permanent actions than a diplomatic mission.

She still didn't want to know. Whatever it was, let it stay buried so they could go back to what they'd been before.

Iris welcomed him close. Arm spreading across the cushions at his back so he could tuck into her side. Face turning toward his hair because she'd always found the smell of it a comfort, once she'd gotten over the strangeness of it. Always wondering at the coven why he smelled of fruit and freshness. Feminine in a way she could appreciate now though she had not then.

"I couldn't, I'm sorry." Sighing, Iris let her shoulders relax, body softening so he had a quiet place to rest. Hoping her calm would bring his calm back to the surface. "How could I tell someone I'd trusted for so long that I suddenly did not? You might not have come back at." Magda's death had broken something in her. That the males could, or would, turn so fully on their queens. She'd felt anchorless, because Iris had always relied on her triangle, even when she'd chosen poorly and had to break it, she'd leaned on and trusted them.

Magda had trusted them too, and they'd murdered her for it.

Amets Moralez

    Purple Dusk to Sapphire
  • Black Widow Warlord Prince
  • Played By: Salem

    Territory First Escort
    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    25 Posts    0 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2019, 05:23:09 AM »

Another grumble was his only answer, trying to find a center to ground himself before he stumbled off the edge. What could he have been hiding that could warrant such a fear in the first place? Nothing Amets could think of without causing the tremors to get worse. That would be an unraveling for another time, the twist of craft and Iris’s hands on his forcing him to settle just a bit more.

Leaning against her turned to tucking into Iris’s side, twisting until he was comfortable and not fighting the craft. She’d been afraid of what she’d find out, afraid that he run and stay gone. Temper was turning to concern and he grumbled again, shifting when the edge of his temper ebbed away.

He was just as much to blame for this mess. Maybe even more so.

Calmer now, face turned into Iris’s neck, Amets sighed. It was an exercise in futility to try and force all the tension from his body and he settled wrapping his arms around Iris’s waist. “I would’ve come back even if you had told me that.” Eyes closing with a shudder as he tried to pull himself together. “You’re not going to get rid of me that easily.” Calm. It was easier to focus on winding down with Iris as an anchor. Easier too to remember why he avoided sinking into such comforts.

It was too easy to get comfortable in something that wasn’t meant for him. Too easy to forget his duty in the interest of being greedy. Untangling was going to be a problem, one Amets would have to figure out when that time came. He could afford to be a bit greedy now though.

“Iris, why would you think I’d want to go back to Shalador?” One eye opening with the question, twisting just enough to look at her. The notion was still gnawing at him, more with curiosity now than temper.

Irisviel Crag

    Red to Gray
  • Black Widow Queen
  • Played By: dergon

    Little Terreille Kaeleer
    66 Posts    121 marks
Re: Hazy Shade of Winter
« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2019, 06:33:04 PM »

It was a relief. Body turning into hers. Iris let him, making room in the along her side and under her jaw. Thumbs stroking his knuckles, other arm stretching out across the cushions at their back so she could stroke his hair as well. Craft and person working to soothe him. She had always found a little contact did as much good work as the craft itself.

For herself as well as whoever needed soothing.

"I'm not trying to get rid of you at all." He was her best escort and her calmest ally. Arms slinking around her waist, she grinned into the top of his head and gave his hair a gentle tug. "At least not at the moment." It was a relief, the contact, for her. His temper sloughing from them both as he settled against her.

"Ohh." She hedged. A man's rut wasn't to be held against him. And Iris wasn't holding it against him. But she couldn't help but wonder if it had something to do with it. "You enjoyed it when we went." It had been a pleasant trip, until the gate had failed. "You liked the dancing," laughter inlaying her words. Glancing down at his peeking eye, Iris shrugged.

"And you and the little healer were getting on rather well, before you left." What had happened once he had was a mystery. Amets had not told her much of his travels, and Irisviel hadn't pried beyond the discussion of trade agreements.

 

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