I have never liked to take sides, save for always being on the side of my friends. I have tried so hard to not do so, especially since the fall of Cristof’s castle, when it seemed that the Unseelie and the Seelie were demanding that we all choose sides. Gwyn chose, and that was right for her. I did not, which was right for me, even with all the attendant problems with His Unseelie Majesty. Instead, I chose to be a bridge, an envoy, an emissary, able to move between the Seelie and Unseelie courts while being a part of neither, and representing the humans and vampires to both. I walk between the worlds of the fae and the worlds of the humans. I include the vampires in the latter, since all of us were once human.
In time, I have found that I am actually a part of both worlds now, fae-blooded through my mother, vampire by Katharina, and the longer I remain here, the deeper I seem to get into both those worlds. The accident with Isabella and my relationship with Gwyn, both bringing out more and more of the fae; and Maric’s training and vitae, making me more a vampire than I was before. And now, I have partaken of more of the fae, of the Unseelie Queen herself, and I am pulled deeper again into that world. As I said above, I chose to be a bridge, and I realise that a bridge cannot be a bridge, unless it is firmly anchored at both ends, in both the worlds it connects. Thus, given what has passed, I suppose it was inevitable that I should become part of both. And thus I find myself, a bridge between two worlds.
As requested, I waited until the sun was on the horizon, and then made my way down the hill, to the bridge, where I presented myself to the ravens, ready to be taken to Her Majesty. I did not know quite what to expect, so went with a mixture of anticipation and apprehension. Her Majesty had promised to Quicken me, which she said was her gift to me, to awaken my heritage. On the surface, that sounded like a good thing, but yet I wasn’t sure. I had some inkling of what the Unseelie considered a good thing, from my dealings with Gwythyr and I was not so sure I liked that. But then, I had often gotten the impression from Faermorn that she did not much like those things either. So, it was in a decidedly mixed frame of mind that I presented myself at the bridge, to be taken to the Queen’s chambers.
I was not surprised to find Valene there, already curled up with Faermorn. I had been there for their re-binding, so her being there for my Quickening made sense. She, however, did not seem entirely pleased to see me, as if she did not know who I was. From her reaction, perhaps she perceived me only as a possible threat to Faermorn. I accessed the bond between us, sending a calm I was not entirely sure I felt myself, and as always, my deep love for her.
Faermorn was sleeping, dreaming, and she seemed cold, lying on the furs instead of under them. Valene’s growls were enough to disturb her, struggling back to wakefulness. She looked at me and then beyond me with some surprise, saying “I dreamed of you.” I looked behind to see that Vedis was also there. In what capacity, I could not guess, since I knew nothing of relations between the demons and the Unseelie Court. Faermorn smiled at both of us and beckoned us both closer, her other hand trying to soothe Valene’s aggression. She asked that we join her for a while because she needed to say our goodbyes while she could. As ever, I took off my sword before approaching and giving her my now customary greeting of a kiss on the hand. I could feel the sadness in her and tried to counter it with they joy I had felt on seeing Cernunnos. Rather than goodbyes, I told her, I preferred the French words – “Au Revoir.”
Vedis hoped that Faermorn’s dreams had been good ones without her there to influence them. There was a moment of regret on her face when Faermorn mentioned goodbyes. She didn’t say goodbyes, she told Faermorn, but she had come anyway. She came forward slowly, and I could see sorrow in her face, much as there would have been in mine, had I not been trying to hide it.
Valene seemed to relax a little at Faermorn’s touch, and perhaps at what I was sending through the bond. She settled slightly and curled herself into Faermorn’s larger form. When she saw Vedis, she seemed to curl up even smaller, ears flattened against her head, and for a moment, looking much more catlike than normal. I did not know why. I knew they had history, and that Valene had been a part of the Seid clan, but of course, I did not know what had passed in the many years, for her, that we had been apart. Faermorn’s reaction to Vedis, I could not quite work out, the cold and heat meeting that seemed to cool the room somehow. She was glad that Vedis had come to her. To my greeting, she reacted as she had before, that flurry of warmth and almost impossible desire beneath the skin. A charming poet, she called me, reacting to my speaking French. Oddly, that had seemed to provoke a reaction in Vedis too. “Mon plaisir, ma reine, vous êtes belle comme toujours.” I told her, keeping hold of her hand as I reached across with the other to touch Valene, calling on my blood to give her strength and warmth. I questioned the idea of more gifts; since it seemed to me that I had nearly all I loved here, save for Gwyn, who I could sense was not far away. I would not deny her, though.
Vedis came closer, remaining standing. She told Faermorn that she owed her no gifts, as all her debts had been paid in full. She had come to see if she could help, as she held a part of Faermorn’s power, which she would return if it helped her to regain her health. She told us that meeting fate upon your feet was the demon way as she came a little closer. Valene seemed to perk up a little, agreeing that they didn’t give up without a fight. The Seids fight until the end. They met death head on with a bloody smile on their faces. I had to chuckle a little as she said this, reaching for my hand, our energies touching. She was sure that Vedis could help Faermorn, that much she said.
Faermorn looked upon the three of us, weakened, but still very much the Faerie Queen. All the various energies; hers, mine, Valene’s, Vedis’ swirling together, raising the tension in the air, like a coming thunderstorm, a growing tide. The veils fell aside as she dropped the glamour, showing all that she was and could be; the very essence of all desire and beauty, her voice pure fire and moonlight. Come to me, she bade us, so that she might give, as she was wished, as she was made, as she was to the end. The sight brought a gasp and a sigh from me, but a contented one. At last, I could see beyond the glamour, see what was real, which was, in a way, all that I had ever wanted. I was there, I told her, and we all were, all here for her as she had wished. I shifted slightly so that Vedis could get closer, while still stroking on Valene’s and Faermorn’s hands. Then, in an attempt to lighten the mood a little, I chuckled and admitted that I did not know what a Quickening was.
Vedis laughed and told me I was about to find out. She said that family was strength, kneeling between us and caressing Faermorn’s leg, sending new jolts of energy into the gathering. “Betwixt and between, his desire for you is manifest,” she said, brushing my back with her tentacles and Valene’s hand with others. The energy in the room was palpable, the swirling of power, the strange melange of demonic and fae, human and vampire, dizzying desire, desire that had me on the precipice, and for a moment, I was almost afraid, trapped here between one of my greatest loves, the promise of everything that was this Faerie Queen, who I realised I had come to love as well, and the frightening allure of the Queen of Lust. Valene spoke as well, her own glamour falling away as her own desires joined the whirlpool. “Here and there and everywhere, we reside. Our power is thrice-fold, true and tried.” Her words, like Vedis’ sounding formal, ritualistic, their power pulling me in. Strong magic was afoot, and I was the centre of it. Faermorn’s own power burst forth into us all, rushing over us, caressing and tingling our skins, our very beings, clinging to us as her inner desires flared, desire for her Cait, desire for Vedis, desire for me, a rush of feeling that shuddered her body, her arms pulling at mine, pulling me down onto her soft, yielding flesh. My breath was ragged now, and in my surprise, I barely managed to catch my weight on my arms, either side of her, suddenly face to face, almost lip to lip, very aware that my lower body was lying on hers, soft, warm, inviting. I breathed hard, composing myself as best I could. “My lady,” I asked, “what would you have of me?” Her face was too beautiful and my desire so strong, that I had to fight to keep my composure. I smiled, letting her see my love and friendship, lowering myself to kiss her forehead, for that was all I could trust myself with at that moment.
There was a weight on my back, soft, supple flesh, and burning lust. It was Vedis, leaning against me, pressing me harder against Faermorn. She told me that Faermorn was offering me a Quickening, and saying I should do my research – as if I hadn’t been scouring the libraries at Maric’s for clues. She pressed herself against me, her lips brushing my neck, the fangs grazing the skin, pulling my hair aside with a tentacle, while others caressed Valene and Faermorn. Lust and desire was burning the air around us. Valene joined the press of bodies, her own lips and teeth finding the spot on my neck where we had bonded so long ago. She agreed with Vedis, saying I really, really should do my research, she called me her handsome poet and told me this was going to be the most intense night of my life. I could feel her own desires being added to that which surrounded us, until I could no longer tell what was what, whose energies were whose, whose lust and desire was what, only that we four were somehow melded together.
Faermorn’s body was writhing against mine, against the press of all three of us, glowing brighter with the rush of feeling. I was only too aware of her very inviting flesh pressed against mine, soft and hard, only a few layers of fabric between us being joined in an entirely other way. The light, the warmth, the desire, the beauty that had drawn a fae king to her, and I understood more of the story Valene had told me. The energy flowed around and in me, energy other than that of lust and desire, the energy that was calling to the fae part of my being, that which I had from Mother, and I could hear her voice, see her face in among the sensations that were taking me over. Faermorn’s face and voice recaptured my attention. “Partake of me,” she said, “Take of me what you will, my body, my blood, and my fire will Quicken you.” She pressed herself against me. “I am Sidhe, and that which is fae will always come to my call.”
My body was reacting without me, making its own desires felt, my hardness pressing against her. I struggled to resist its desires, uncertain how where this was going. I could only barely manage to mutter “my lady” a few times, looking down at her, her face, her lovely face, so close to mine. I called upon all my will, to remain in control, to not give in to my primal needs. I kissed her, gently, on each cheek, her eyes, her ears, and the pulse on her neck, that, itself yet another desire. “What would you?” I asked, not knowing my own feelings well enough to choose. I could hear Vedis chuckling and saying I was strong. I guess I impressed her, but she did not know how hard it was for me to resist. A tentacle appeared, pulling Faermorn’s head back slightly, so I could see the pulse point clearly. “You could take of her blood,” she said, “though her delights are hardly limited to that.” She started caressing Faermorn, me, Valene, with her tentacles. “She is desire,” she said, “I am lust, and hunger you already know.” Valene pressed herself against me too, whispering in my ear. “Feed upon her, handsome drinker of blood… Feast and be your true self.” I could see her shadows moving, undoing Faermorn’s clothing as she teased me with her tongue on my neck. “Hunger for her,” she said, “Take from her and know pleasure beyond compare. We are primordial desires and you are ours.” She started pressing herself against my back, ordering me to take, and to give.
I barely heard them as Faermorn trembled beneath me, her body pressed against mine, every fibre of her tugging every fibre of me, lost, it seemed, in desire and lust, spurred on by Valene and Vedis, yet looking at me, her hands grasping my shoulders, pulling me to her. Each kiss I had given, bringing yet another shiver. Each touch of her skin against mine was dizzying, scent and taste and pure sensation, everything in her a maelstrom of lust and desire that would take me, and I would be lost forever in that in that deep well, never wanting to climb out. The desires in me, in her, the desires and lusts from Valene and Vedis filled me, surrounded me, almost drowning me. I covered her face in kisses again, my love, my lust, my appreciation for what she was, kissing down to her sweet, alabaster neck, lust and hunger breaking like the sea over my head as I kissed against the pulse. For the sake of sanity, for the sake of my love for Gwyn, and for the sake of not losing myself, I chose hunger, readying my fangs to strike and hoping I was making the right choice. I bit, and that beautiful, bright, burning blood flowed into my mouth and took me. I had partaken of elven blood before, served by Borris at the London Café, but this was that magnified a thousand or more times. This was life; this was the very essence of being. This was ecstasy and more, much more, filling me, permeating me, awakening every cell, every fibre of me that came from Mother. In that moment, I was fae, I was FAE, more than I could ever imagine. The Wyld filled me, turned me, surrounded me until I could take no more and the blackness took me.
When I awoke, my face was resting on Faermorn’s breast, a soft, pliable, temptation, so close to my mouth, but still covered in her silks and that strange, silver chain mail she wears. Valene was cuddled with her from the other side, her arm across Faermorn’s body and entwined with mine. She, like me, was mostly fully clothed. Of Vedis, there was no sign, save for the lingering atmosphere of lust and desire. Faermorn and Valene slept, deeply, insensible to me moving. The fae energy in me sparkled and swirled, and the very sight of them renewed my desires, almost too much for me to bear. I slid my arm from under Faermorn, and disentangled my other arm from Valene. Neither of them woke, or showed any reaction. I kissed them both gently and took my leave, sleep long gone from me and likely very far away for some time.
And so, I have been Quickened. I still do not entirely know what that is, save that I can feel, and I know my fae side much more than I had before. What other aspects of the fae I have taken on, I do not know. It is going to take me some time to integrate all of this, and I do not know how much time I have. I am left with a sense of wonder, and a lingering sense of vague regret. I think I chose wisely to partake by the blood, but part of me will always wonder what might have been, had I chosen other. What I am now, I do not know. Am I fae? Am I vampire? Or am I something in between? Between two worlds, but a part of both? Only time will tell.