Rock Hard pt. 4

It is time for Gwyn to leave, but before he goes, Nathair decides to call in the life debt he owes.

"Nnnh…" Gwyn groaned. He’d been having an extremely arousing sex dream involving both Rafe and Nathair working his cock. He would have been disappointed if his cock wasn’t buried in the tight, wet heat of Nathair’s throat.

"Not that I am the slightest bit inclined to complain, but…" said Gwyn, as he looked down along the length of his naked body. Nathair was on the bed, between his legs, head bobbing up and down on his cock. He wouldn’t have thought the timid warlock capable of it, but he imagined there was some sort of medical rationale to it.

A quiet groan bubbled up out of Gwyn when Nathair pulled off him with a wet pop. His cock strained in the cool air that had all-too-suddenly replaced the heat of Nathair’s throat. The warlock looked at him with those bright green eyes and chuckled. "Apologies," Nathair murmured.

"I did not mean to wake you, Gwyn," said Nathair, licking his lips as he sat up. Thankfully, he didn’t leave Gwyn’s cock unattended for more than a few seconds. He loosely wrapped his slender fingers around the aching length of it and gave it a gentle tug.

Gwyn shook his head, shuddering as Nathair leaned over his manhood and breathed over the head. The warm breath ghosting over the sensitive flesh made his spine tingle. "There—Nnnh—are worse ways to wake up," he said, flashing a weak grin at Nathair as he reached up to rub the sleep from his eyes.

Nathair nodded. "The treatment is more effective when the excess mana is expelled regularly," he said, tracing his tongue in a circle along the crown of Gwyn’s cock head. "I would have asked, but, well… You were otherwise indisposed…"

Gwyn felt just enough better that he could almost forget one of his arms was hobbled. In shifting to find a better position in his pillows, he received a rather unpleasant reminder. A shock of agony raced down his arm, radiating from his shoulder and making his fingers tingle. "Agh. Good to see that’s as unpleasant as ever."

A quiet grunt escaped Gwyn as Nathair lightly tugged on his manhood. Now that he’d had a taste of the warlock’s mouth on his cock, the fingers wrapped loosely around his shaft seemed wholly inadequate. "You cannot rush recovery, Gwyn," said Nathair, a hunt of amusement in his voice.

Gwyn’s eyes flew open when Nathair traced a finger down along the inside of his thigh. Nathair’s feather-light touch on his skin felt electric. It made his nerves sing and sent pleasure thrumming through his veins. He couldn’t make sense of it. "I will say, however, that you have made remarkable progress," Nathair continued.

"Now…" What felt like a spark arced from the tip of Nathair’s fingernail to the meat of Gwyn’s thigh. The muscle twitched, light spasms spreading from the point of contact down along his leg as something inside of him seemed to respond.

Heat, deep and tingling, raced along Gwyn’s muscles. It wasn’t uncomfortable, but the sensation was certainly alien. It lingered for a moment, like a buzzing under his skin, until Gwyn wriggled his toes, whereupon the sensation slowly dissipated. "W-What was that?" Gwyn stammered.

It felt like hundreds of pins and needles that had been stuck into Gwyn’s leg were being pulled out one by one. Once they were gone, a weight that Gwyn hadn’t realized had been bearing down on his leg was lifted. Relief crashed through him like a shock of cold water and he almost laughed. Even the aches he’d felt in recent years due to his age seemed to have vanished entirely.

"That was the feeling of the meridians in your leg improving," said Nathair. The corner of his lips curled into a little smirk. His emerald eyes glinted as he lowered himself to Gwyn’s crotch. "You’ve come far enough that I have no qualms with doing this," he said, before swallowing Gwyn’s cock to the root.

As soon as he felt the tight, wet heat of Nathair’s throat engulf him, all Gwyn could do was gasp. His back arched off the bed. His toes curled. The pleasure was intense.

Nathair’s mouth felt so good on Gwyn’s cock, and his tongue was masterful as it swiped from side to side along the underside of it. Gwyn clenched his fingers in the sheets. It was all he could do not to thrust his hips up into Nathair’s eager mouth.

Even if Nathair had judged that Gwyn had recovered well enough to get his cock sucked, Gwyn was pretty sure the warlock wouldn’t look too favorably on him doing any thrusting. "F-Fuck, Nathair. H-How are you so good?" Gwyn breathed. He hadn’t thought a hermit would have such skill with his mouth.

The edge came quickly for Gwyn. As a knight, he’d never had much of an opportunity to indulge himself. The knights’ barracks didn’t provide a lot of privacy. Getting off often boiled down to finding brief moments away from everyone else.

Jerking off for extended periods of time was a luxury that only the knight captain, who had his own quarters, could regularly partake of. Masturbation was hard, fast, and pragmatic for all the other knights. The pleasure was the point, but it was also secondary to the relief as no one wanted to get caught with their breeches down.

Just a hair more and Gwyn was sure he’d reach his climax. He didn’t want to catch Nathair by surprise so he said, "Nathair, I’m—" The rest of what he’d intended to say died in his throat, however, as Nathair pulled off his cock the moment he started speaking.

A low groan ripped out of Gwyn at the sudden absence of pleasure. Acting purely on instinct, he thrust his hips upward, his cock straining and throbbing in the cool air. It was so unfair that Nathair had stopped just as he had been about to come. "F-Fuck, Nathair! P-Please…"

A frisson of pleasure shook through Gwyn’s body when Nathair delicately tapped the head of his cock. There was a wolfish grin gracing the warlock’s lips as he leaned down and furtively licked the tip. "Making you come is the point, Gwyn," Nathair murmured, green eyes gleaming as he locked gazes with Gwyn.

Nathair licked his lips, making Gwyn shiver. "You needn’t worry about spilling in my mouth, Gwyn. I’m well-equipped to handle your current excess of mana." Nathair’s lips pressed up against the side of Gwyn’s cock head. "And besides… I find I rather… enjoy your taste."

Whatever Gwyn wanted to say to that died in his throat as the slippery wet heat of Nathair’s mouth enveloped his length yet again. He moaned, bucking his hips into the air. It was no use. Nathair’s lips were firmly locked around the base of Gwyn’s cock, cheeks dimpled inward as he sucked hard.

Nathair’s gusto was mind-blowing. Gwyn almost felt as if he was going to get his soul sucked out of his cock. When Nathair finally started moving, he bounced his head up and down on Gwyn’s crotch like a starving man that had just been presented with a lavish meal.

Moaning, Gwyn couldn’t help but tense as he approached the edge yet again. He slid even faster toward his climax as he clenched at the sheets and squeezed his eyes shut. His back arched off the bed as he dug his toes into the mattress, tension coiling in his groin like a spring.

The pressure built and built and built with every wet slurp on Gwyn’s cock until he couldn’t hold it any longer. His balls pulled up against his body, churning with cum. His cock pulsed and throbbed and swelled until the orgasm hit him like a sack of bricks.

A long, low moan escaped Gwyn as he spilled into Nathair’s eager gullet. Spurt after spurt of thick cum shot out of his cock and slid down Nathair’s throat. The warlock hummed pleasantly around his cock, making him shake at the sudden, intense pleasure that accompanied the vibrations.

Once the orgasm had run its course, Nathair pulled off of Gwyn’s cock. He delicately licked up the last remaining pearl of cum that had clung to the slit. He sat up between Gwyn’s legs and grinned, a little bit of cum at the corner of his lips. "Truly, Gwyn, you taste wonderful."

Gwyn couldn’t help but blush. It was impossible not to see Rafe in Nathair’s eyes, especially when he was acting like this. Everyone thought of the Golden Lion as some paragon of virtue and justice but Gwyn had known the truth that lay beneath the brocade and embroidery.

The Rafe Gwyn had known was wicked. Not in the sense that he was evil, but rather in the sense that he liked to torment Gwyn. Day after day, it was the same story, teasing Gwyn whenever they had a moment alone together when Rafe knew that Gwyn could do nothing but silently take it.

The predatory glint in Nathair’s eyes was uncannily similar to what Gwyn had seen in Rafe’s. He couldn’t help but wonder if, somehow, his king had been reborn into the warlock that was in front of him now. "T-Thank you, Nathair," he mumbled, panting.

"I-It was my p-pleasure," Nathair stammered. Gwyn blinked. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing. Somehow, the timid version of Nathair had returned, and with no warning. He glanced at the warlock, surprised to find that Nathair’s cheeks and the tips of Nathair’s ears had taken on a rather rosy hue.

"Is—Is everything alright?" said Gwyn. He reached out, fingers lightly touching Nathair’s which were resting on his thigh.

The flush of Nathair’s cheeks deepened. "Y-Yes," he stammered. He averted his gaze, unable to meet Gwyn’s eyes. He took "I-I have to go. I-I have something to do."

The display would have been adorable if it hadn’t been so baffling. Before Gwyn could say anything else, though, Nathair hopped off the bed and scurried out of the room. Gwyn sighed and leaned his head back. He didn’t have the energy to think too much about what had just happened. He was tired.

Gwyn felt like all the energy in his body had just been drained, but not in a bad way. It was strangely comfortable. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath. Before he knew it, he’d fallen asleep.

Gwyn woke up a few more times to Nathair dutifully helping him spill his seed. Each time, he felt a little bit lighter and a little bit better. He didn’t feel like an overfilled sack of grain, filled to bursting. The pain in his shoulder had faded bit by bit to the point that it wasn’t all that uncomfortable to sit up in bed anymore.

Not that Gwyn was complaining at all about his treatment, but he was under the impression that things had taken a rather strange turn. It would have been all well and good that he was finally getting his strength back if not for the fact that Nathair was acting oddly.

On a couple of occasions, Gwyn woke up to Nathair firmly grasping and pumping his shaft, face as red as a beet. On other occasions, he woke up to Nathair swallowing him, a devilish glint in those bright green eyes.

If Gwyn didn’t know better, he would have thought there were two Nathairs entirely, but his intuition told him that there was only one. He’d been wrong before, but he doubted that this was such an occasion.

It was strange for Gwyn to have his manhood handled by someone who, at one moment, could be a ravishing beauty, and the next a virginal fledgling who barely knew his way around it. Every time he tried to ask, both versions of Nathair dodged the question—one more skillfully than the other.

It really was all rather suspicious, but Gwyn didn’t have the energy to pursue the matter for a long time. The first day that he came without passing out soon after, he resolved that he would get to the bottom of it one way or another—if only to soothe his anxieties. He didn’t want to think ill of his benefactor. It was unbecoming. However, he couldn’t well let it rest.

The better Gwyn felt, the better his sense of the passage of time got. The days stopped blurring together so much. Previously, time felt like one long undifferentiated smear, but not anymore. He could tell the days apart, somehow, though he remained ignorant as to how long it had been since the battle.

Though Gwyn was getting better, he felt the pace was far too slow for his liking. His shoulder was still sore despite Nathair’s care. That being said, he didn’t think there was anything he could complain about. His mobility was vastly improved compared to how it had been on his first meeting with Nathair.

It took roughly another two weeks by Gwyn’s estimation before he felt well enough to get out of bed—under Nathair’s strict supervision, of course. His legs were like jelly, threatening to fold under him at the slightest provocation, but he fought through it with Nathair’s support.

Gwyn didn’t make it more than a couple of steps that first day, but he was steadier on the next. And even more so on the day after that. Despite everything he’d been through, the fighting spirit he’d thought had been extinguished continued to burn bright.

Despite the prolonged inactivity, the tone and definition of Gwyn’s body didn’t decline. He distinctly remembered how badly his muscles had wasted away the last time he’d been bedridden. According to Nathair, it was because of the mana raging through his body acting as one hell of a workout.

It took some time to get used to being up and about again, but in the end, Gwyn managed. He had to use one of Nathair’s old quarterstaffs as a crutch, but it was better than nothing. A week after his first steps out of bed, he finally laid eyes on the rest of Nathair’s home.

Gwyn gawked when he made his first tentative journey outside of the bedroom. Bundles of herbs and flowers in a variety of stages of drying hung from the ceiling. Makeshift shelves filled with jars and baskets lined the walls. A faint haze of smoke hung in the air. Swirls and eddies illuminated by sunlight streamed through two small circular windows by the front door.

The layout of the structure was rather utilitarian, but everything else made it feel more like a home. There was no comparison to be made to the rather drab bedroom that Gwyn had been stuck in.

"Wait…" Gwyn murmured, as he took a good look around him. Apart from the door to the bedroom, the only other door in the house was to the outside. It had never even occurred to him that there was no reason for Nathair to have another bedroom. He’d simply assumed. "Where have you been sleeping?"

Nathair shrugged. "I make do," he said, guiding Gwyn over to a chair in the kitchen where he could sit. "Believe it or not, the forest provides. I do not mind sleeping among the trees every now and then."

Gwyn chuckled. "You wouldn’t happen to have elf blood, would you, Nathair?" he said. He resisted the urge to massage his bad shoulder as soon as he had settled. It was still uncomfortably tight, but he didn’t want to give Nathair any excuse to keep him confined.

A quiet laugh escaped Nathair. He shook his head as he sat down opposite Gwyn. "Not that I know of. Although, regrettably, that is one of the many areas that my knowledge is… insufficient. to make a definitive statement," he said.

Gwyn didn’t press the matter, though he could guess what Nathair was alluding to. No wonder he felt a strange affinity for Nathair beyond his similarity to Rafe. He’d always been able to discern, on some level, whenever a person was an orphan like him. He felt a twinge in his chest at the small, sad smile that played on Nathair’s lips. It certainly explained why Nathair’s bedroom was largely barren of personal effects.

Taking a deep breath, Gwyn decided to take the initiative and steer the conversation elsewhere. "I’d like to get some fresh air. Do you think that would be possible?"

Nathair’s sadness faded away. He looked at Gwyn, gaze discerning. It was a little uncomfortable. Gwyn felt like he was being stripped bare in front of Nathair’s eyes. It was strange, too. He’d spent the last little while naked, in bed, to say nothing of the intimacy that he and Nathair had had. This was different, though.

After a moment of silence, Nathair hummed quietly. "Alright," he said, the chair creaking as he got up and came around to Gwyn’s side of the table. "I’ll take you out into the garden. I have a nice bench. How about that?" he said.

"Oh, that would be lovely," said Gwyn. He’d been largely content with staying indoors during the early stages of his recovery since he wasn’t conscious enough to feel cooped up but things had changed. Now that he could walk under his own power—mostly—he was starting to get restless. A brief stint outdoors would probably help a lot.

Nathair helped Gwyn up and led him out the front door of the little burrow. A large, fenced-off area in front of the domicile had been turned into a flourishing garden. He took a deep breath and sighed, the clean, crisp air filling his lungs. It had been so long since the last time he was able to enjoy the simple act of breathing.

"The air in cities is foul, compared to this," said Gwyn, as he staggered along with Nathair’s assistance. "Even on the march, it’s difficult to appreciate the open country through the stench of men and horses."

After a little bit of struggling on the uneven paving stones, Nathair and Gwyn managed to make their way to a bench off to the side of the path. "That sounds horrific," Nathair admitted, as he helped Gwyn down and sat beside him. "I have lived out here for as long as I can remember."

The crisp, cold air was unmistakable, and the treeline that wrapped around the house only served to confirm Gwyn’s suspicions. They were deep in the Fellmire and he struggled to comprehend how someone could live alone, so far away from civilization.

Gwyn looked around. Nathair’s garden was beautiful. Every plant was lush and green, burdened with plump and glistening fruits. It made sense. It was appropriate. He could only imagine that Nathair treated the plants with the same care that he’d shown Gwyn in the time they’d spent together. Even so, he didn’t think that the little garden could feed an adult man enough for a year.

"I suppose you must be wondering how I am able to feed myself," said Nathair. Gwyn nodded, embarrassed that Nathair had sussed out what was on his mind. "The Fellmire has always provided. I have not had any need to rely on human civilization."

As he was looking around, what appeared to be a small shrine in a corner of the garden caught Gwyn’s eye. On top of a squat wooden table was a stone sculpture of a large snake wound around a pillar. Arranged around the sculpture were a few earthenware pots with plants and a small bowl that held two burning sticks of incense.

Smoke from the incense rose into the air in lazy curls. They seemed to wind and slither around the form of the stone snake, which had two small emeralds for eyes that glittered in the light. Absurd as it was, Gwyn felt as if the snake was looking at him.

"You keep saying that the Fellmire provides… How, exactly, does it do that?" said Gwyn. "Did it provide that?"

Nathair followed Gwyn’s gaze and chuckled. He placed a hand on Gwyn’s thigh, and Gwyn’s cock twitched at the touch. Gwyn couldn’t help but laugh. It had been some time since a man was able to make him so aroused with so little effort. "I suppose you could say so," said Nathair. "It was here when I arrived."

Gwyn couldn’t move his gaze from the snake. Its emerald eyes were so reminiscent of Nathair’s, only they were much deeper. They were enchanting. Enthralling. He felt that he could fall into them forever if he let himself, and he was half-tempted to. Fortunately, Nathair’s touch on his leg helped to keep him grounded.

"When you arrived? I thought you’d lived here for as long as you could remember," said Gwyn, blinking slowly as he tried to process what Nathair had just said. He didn’t need to know magic, but the statue stank of it. "Where did you arrive here from?"

Nathair shook his head. "I don’t know. I don’t remember. My first memory is of waking up here, in the Fellmire. Of wandering alone for gods know how long before I found this clearing where that statue was waiting for me."

A faint breeze wafted through the clearing. The leaves of the nearby trees rustled. It was a tranquil moment, and yet, Gwyn couldn’t help but feel a little unsettled. The more he stared into the serpent’s eyes, the more he felt as if the wind was whispering to him. "Who—What is it?" he said, unable to break eye contact with the snake.

"The guardian spirit of the Fellmire," said Nathair.

The words sent a chill up Gwyn’s spine. The whole time he’d been looking at the statue, there had been a niggling feeling in the back of his mind. Now, he knew why. Somehow, it had felt familiar.

"Do you know the stories they tell about this place?" said Gwyn. He wanted to get up. He wanted to get closer to the shrine. He wanted to look as deep into those bright green eyes as he could, but he knew that he didn’t have the strength. Not yet, at least.

"I can’t say that I do," said Nathair. "As I said, I haven’t been around too many people."

Gwyn nodded. It was a stupid question. "They say that the Fellmire wood is a place where lost souls and stupid men go to die," he said.

"What?" said Nathair. He sounded incredulous. As if the notion were laughable at face value. "No. You’re not serious, are you?"

"I am," said Gwyn, shaking his head. "I never believed the stories, of course… I lived in a nearby village when I was young. I didn’t have a good childhood. I often came to the Fellmire when I wanted to get away from all the terrible people in my life at the time."

The corner of Gwyn’s mouth twitched. "They told me that the woods were dangerous. That one day I would go in, never come back, and good riddance. But I never felt that it was."

Nathair squeezed Gwyn’s thigh. "Not that I’m complaining—I appreciate that you trust me enough to talk about your past—but why are you telling me this, Gwyn?" he said.

"It’s because of that," said Gwyn, pointing at the statue. "When I used to come here often, I always felt that something was protecting me from the beasts that dwelled in the depths of the wood. I can’t help but think that this ‘guardian spirit’ of yours was what kept me from getting torn apart all those years ago."

"Is that so?" said Nathair. He paused, for a moment. "I suppose it only makes sense… While he normally doesn’t tolerate intruders into the woods, he does tend to care for the lost and wounded ones. If not for him I wouldn’t have known to come for you when you arrived."

Some time ago, before all of this, Gwyn would have dismissed Nathair’s words as mere nonsense. He knew better now, though. He’d suspected, at least, from the moment he saw the sculpture. "Is he your patron?" he said. Strange lights seemed to dance within the emeralds of the sculpture’s eyes.

Nathair was quiet for a moment. "Yes, but… It’s somewhat complicated," he said. Gwyn’s curiosity must have been palpable because Nathair then continued to say, "It would take me the better part of the day to explain, and I would really rather not, today. Perhaps at another time."

Gwyn nodded. He could respect that. For a while, he and Nathair just sat there, on the bench, enjoying the clean air and the cool breeze. After some time, Gwyn sighed heavily and said, "I will miss this place, truly."

"Miss it?" said Nathair. "You’re hardly in a position to walk on your own, much less think about leaving already. And do you really have to go? You can stay here with me and—"

"No," said Gwyn. The offer was tempting, and declining it made his heart ache. He was glad that he was looking away from Nathair so that the warlock wouldn’t see the tears brimming in the corners of his eyes.

Gwyn knew that if he gave it a chance, he could grow to love Nathair as much as he’d loved Rafe, but he didn’t know if he could risk such a thing again. Besides, there were other reasons he couldn’t stay. "I have a duty to my king. To my kingdom."

Nathair reached over and grabbed Gwyn’s hand. The strange twinkling in the statue’s eyes faded away and the strange trance, that Gwyn had unknowingly fallen into, broke. As Nathair squeezed his hand, Gwyn turned away from the small shrine in the corner of the garden and looked at Nathair.

Gwyn made the mistake of looking into Nathair’s eyes. They shimmered with hurt, loneliness, longing, and something else. Something inscrutable. It made his heart beat faster in his chest. "Why go back?" Nathair whispered. "Why go back when all that’s waiting there for you is misery?"

Why, indeed. Gwyn was silent, for a moment, as he struggled to put together the words to express his burden. "I have to…" he muttered. He couldn’t stomach the wounded look in Nathair’s eyes but neither could he tear his gaze away. "I-I can’t abandon what Rafe gave his life to create. I can’t—I can’t let them tear it all down. I just… I can’t."

Nathair’s lower lip trembled. "Please, Gwyn… Won’t you reconsider?" he said. "You can have a life out here. With me. It can be lonely, sometimes, but at least it’s peaceful."

Gwyn’s pulse pounded in his ears. His heart hammered in his chest. His cock throbbed. The look in Nathair’s eyes made it difficult to think. He wanted to say yes. It would have been so easy to just abandon everything. To live with someone that cared about him, and whom he cared about.

A lifetime of conditioning, and a sense of duty and loyalty that was too strong for his own good, meant that Gwyn couldn’t. He closed his eyes and looked away, even though it felt like he was twisting a dagger into his heart. "I can’t," he said.

The day arrived all too soon when Gwyn felt that it was time for him to leave. He would have given anything to stay for even just a week more, to pretend that he could be with Nathair and build a life here, but duty called and he could no longer put it off.

Gwyn felt better. Not just in the sense that he had recovered from his injuries, but in the sense that he felt he’d regained some of his youth. His body felt lighter and sturdier than it had been in ages. The aches he’d started feeling as he got older had faded away.

Nathair was out foraging at the moment. Gwyn’s heart was heavy knowing that he would have to break the news upon Nathair’s return. He could only imagine the hurt and the heartbreak. He had to figure out how best to say what needed to be said without making Nathair suffer more than was necessary.

Now that he had the strength to move about on his own, Gwyn decided to head outside. He needed to clear his head, and fresh air was probably just the thing that he needed. He walked out into the garden and found himself drawn toward the small shrine that Nathair had set up in the corner.

Before setting out earlier that morning, Nathair had replaced the incense with a fresh batch, and Gwyn couldn’t help but watch as smoke curled lazily into the air. He took a deep breath and looked into the snake’s emerald eyes.

In his youth, Gwyn had always felt that something in the Fellmire woods had been protecting him. If he was right, and if this was the spirit that had sheltered him when no one else could, he hoped that maybe standing before it would give him some guidance.

The gentle breeze shifted, blowing the rising plumes of incense smoke in Gwyn’s direction. He didn’t step away. Couldn’t. The bright green eyes of the snake seemed to swallow him whole, and as incense smoke filled his lungs, his racing mind slowed like a calm and placid brook.


Gwyn was floating on a cloud of warm fuzziness. It was profoundly comfortable. There was a strange, slightly familiar sound in his ear but he couldn’t quite put a finger on what it was.


The sound was getting clearer, but it was still garbled. It was as if someone was trying to speak with him while underwater. He tried to ignore it but it was insistent and some part of him recognized that it was important to pay attention.


Nathair’s voice startled Gwyn back to reality. "Gwyn, are you alright?" said the warlock.

Gwyn rubbed his forehead. "I-I think so," he said. He couldn’t quite remember what he’d been doing. He’d come outside to think and had stood in front of the shrine to the Fellmire guardian for guidance. He’d started in the morning but the light streaming into the clearing was tinged with orange, and the shadows of the trees laid long across the ground.

"What were you doing outside?" said Nathair, the touch of his hand gentle on Gwyn’s upper arm. "I know you’re feeling better but—"

"I was thinking," said Gwyn. Well, he should have been. He hadn’t managed to figure out what to say to hurt Nathair the least so he supposed the best approach now was to be direct. "I have to go. Maybe not today, but soon. Tomorrow, if I can," he said.

Nathair’s face fell. "Gwyn, you’re not ready. Your arm hasn’t recovered completely." Tears welled in the corners of Nathair’s eyes. "Are you really so eager to get away from me? You don’t have to rush on my account."

"No," said Gwyn, horrified. He turned toward Nathair and held the warlock’s hands. "Never. I would stay if I could, but I’ve put off my duties for long enough. I have to go."

Nathair steeled his expression. "You have to come back," he said. Gwyn was glad that the matter of him staying had been dropped. He didn’t want his last day with Nathair to be filled with bitterness. "If you want to go, then you have to come back," said Nathair, trembling.

"I will," said Gwyn. He meant it. With every fiber of his being. A part of him still felt that it was an infidelity to Rafe, but he knew that Rafe would have wanted him to be happy. "I swear it on my honor, Nathair. I will."

Nathair sniffled and wiped the tears from the corners of his eyes. "Good," he said. "And you said that you owed me a life debt, right?"

Gwyn froze. That was true. He’d almost forgot. "I do," he said.

"Are you sure you don’t want to take it back?" said Nathair, gaze steely.

"I am. But please don’t use it to make me stay," said Gwyn.

Nathair took a deep breath. "I won’t," he said, but there was an inscrutable expression in his eye that made Gwyn feel uneasy. "I’ll call it in now. Stay another night. Give yourself to me. Be with me properly. And I’ll consider the debt paid."

Gwyn smiled, relief flooding in his veins. It was too late to depart, now that the sun was setting. More than that, he was glad that Nathair didn’t seem to have any hard feelings. He was more than happy to lie with Nathair—he’d always intended to, anyway.

"What’s this?" said Gwyn, as Nathair handed him a steaming cup. The aroma was rather nice. It was sweet but also strangely sharp and made his nostrils tingle. He took a sip and blinked. The taste was rather refreshing.

Nathair smiled, something mischievous in his eyes. He had a cup for himself, which he quickly drank down. "It’s a remedy meant to improve stamina and performance," Nathair explained, as he wiped his mouth with the back of his hand. "Since this will be the last night I’ll have you in gods know how long, I intend not to waste it."

Gwyn chuckled. He brought the cup to his lips and tipped his head back as he gulped the drink down. Warmth pooled in his stomach and spread out from there, eventually reaching even the tips of his fingers. "Do you intend to get any sleep?" he said.

Nathair grinned as he pulled his tunic off and unlaced his breeches. He shook his head and leaned in to kiss Gwyn. As they broke apart, he murmured, "Not if I can help it."

"Good," said Gwyn, giving no resistance as Nathair tugged his tunic up and off his torso. He swung his legs onto the bed as Nathair climbed on top of the mattress. His cock twitched as Nathair clambered onto his lap, knees straddling his waist. He moaned as Nathair’s slender fingers splayed on his stomach, rubbing gently at his muscles as they made their way up to his chest.

Gwyn leaned forward, catching Nathair’s lips in his. Heat welled in his groin and he gasped into Nathair’s mouth as Nathair’s fingers pinched his nipples. He laughed quietly into the kiss. If Nathair wanted to play rough, he could play that game, too.

Nathair moaned as Gwyn grazed his teeth along Nathair’s bottom lip. He hissed when Gwyn bit down hard, but not with enough force to draw blood.

As Nathair rolled his hips, their erections brushed against one another, separated only by their breeches. "Happy to touch me?" said Nathair, with a wolfish grin, as they broke apart for air.

Gwyn smirked. He wondered where the timid Nathair had gone, but he didn’t mind spending the night with the assertive one. "Always," he breathed, leaning in to press kisses along the curve of Nathair’s neck.

As Nathair’s fingers deftly undid the ties in the front of Gwyn’s breeches, Gwyn reached behind the warlock and slid his hands under the waistband of Nathair’s. Nathair inched forward to give Gwyn better access, pushing back into Gwyn’s hands as they eased the top of his breeches down.

In all their time together, Gwyn and Nathair had not lain in such a way before. While he’d always enjoyed the sight of Nathair’s behind while he was bedridden, Gwyn had not had a chance to truly appreciate the plump, round cheeks until now. Nibbling on the sensitive skin just above Nathair’s collarbone, he gave the supple mounds of Nathair’s ass a squeeze and smiled at the quiet, breathless moan that it earned him.

Nothing made Gwyn’s cock harder than knowing that he was pleasing his partner. He hadn’t had a chance to be like this with Rafe. He’d been too concerned with his duties as a knight to touch his king. But with Nathair, he had no such compunctions.

Spreading Nathair’s ass cheeks as he palmed them, Gwyn reached his index finger into the cleft between the two mounds and brushed it against the quivering entrance hidden there. Nathair moaned, his smooth pucker flexing at Gwyn’s touch.

Gwyn rubbed Nathair’s hole, working his finger in gentle circles around the heat of it. "Have you any oil?" Gwyn murmured.

Nathair shook his head as he leaned it against Gwyn’s shoulder. "I don’t need it," he whispered. Under his breath, he uttered a few words in a language that Gwyn didn’t understand.

Gwyn’s eyes widened. He realized it was the first time he’d been awake to witness Nathair do proper magic. He was stunned that he felt the buzzing energy sink into Nathair’s body, making Nathair shiver and moan as his back arched.

A heartbeat later, Gwyn felt something wet against the finger he was rubbing against Nathair’s hole. The more he rubbed, the more he felt. The emission was strange, but it wasn’t unpleasant. It was slippery and slightly viscous, just the right consistency for a good lubricant.

Gwyn was about to ask how but he knew he wouldn’t understand even if Nathair answered him. He took it in stride, instead, pressing kisses to the side of Nathair’s neck as he pushed his finger in to the first knuckle.

Nathair moaned. "Keep… Keep doing that, Gwyn."

It was Gwyn’s turn to shudder in pleasure. Nathair’s fingers slid down the front of his breeches and rubbed gently against his erection. He couldn’t help but moan, cock throbbing at the light and teasing touch.

"Take your breeches off," said Nathair, whispering the words into Gwyn’s ear and making him shiver.

Reluctantly, Gwyn pulled his hands out of Nathair’s breeches. He hooked his thumbs into the waistband of his pants and, as Nathair leaned forward to ease the weight off his lap, he lifted his ass off the bed and pushed them down past his knees.

"Eager, are we?" said Gwyn, as Nathair settled back onto his lap. He half-moaned, half-laughed as the cheeky comment earned him a sharp squeeze around his cock.

Nathair gazed into Gwyn’s eyes. "We have all night," he said, voice heavy with arousal. "I just need you inside me. Soon."

Gwyn moaned. The sheer desire he heard in Nathair’s voice made him tremble. He could hardly keep his hands off Nathair once those words were said. He grabbed the warlock’s ass, kneading and squeezing the meaty cheeks before shoving his hands down the back of Nathair’s breeches once again.

Nathair’s back arched as Gwyn inserted two fingers into his entrance this time. Nathair’s hole stretched around the intrusion, squeezing tightly around Gwyn’s fingers as he moved then in and out, loosening the ring of muscle for what was to come.

With his free hand, Nathair grabbed the side of his breeches and yanked them down. Gwyn didn’t stop fucking his fingers in and out of the warlock’s hole while Nathair stripped his pants off.

By the time that the linen breeches hit the ground next to the bed, Nathair was panting and leaning over Gwyn. "I can’t wait anymore," Nathair groaned.

Nathair reached behind him and grabbed Gwyn’s hand by the wrist. He tugged on it, pulling the fingers out of his ass. Gwyn watched, wide-eyed, as Nathair raised the fingers to his mouth to suckle on them.

Bolts of pleasure like lightning shot down Gwyn’s spine as he felt Nathair’s talented tongue swirling around his fingers. He could have never imagined such an innocuous thing to feel so sensual.

Nathair let go of Gwyn’s cock and placed that hand on Gwyn’s chest, pushing down until the knight was lying flat on his back with his head resting on a pillow.

Gwyn’s cock throbbed as Nathair crouched over him. He wasn’t a stranger to lying with another man but, for whatever reason, he felt like a virgin all over again as Nathair lowered himself over his cock. Gwyn moaned, biting his lower lip as he felt the head of his cock press up against Nathair’s wet, slippery hole.

A low, wordless moan escaped Gwyn as Nathair sat on his cock. He could feel Nathair stretching around him, hole trembling with every inch that slipped inside. Nathair was hot, and tight, almost overwhelmingly so. By the time he felt Nathair’s ass against his hips, he was panting heavily and sweat had beaded on his forehead.

"You… You feel bigger than I thought you would be…" said Nathair, breathless.

Gwyn laughed. Rafe had said almost the same thing. "How big did you think I would be?" he said, clutching his sides. The flings he occasionally had to satisfy his sexual needs after Rafe died had never said anything so absurd. It was as if Nathair hadn’t spent the last few months becoming intimately acquainted with his cock.

"Not this big," said Nathair, cracking a lopsided smile. "Fuck," he grunted, as he shifted his weight to get in a better position.

"Feels like I just drove an iron spike up there," Nathair moaned, as he leaned forward to brace his weight with his hands on the mattress.

"You’re one to talk. Nnnh—" said Gwyn. Nathair’s channel gripped him tightly. "You’re like a furnace. You feel so good. I almost wish we could be like this forever."

Nathair’s eyes widened. A strange look crossed his face, but it was gone so quick Gwyn almost thought he was hallucinating. Not that Nathair gave him even a moment to process, as his thoughts were instantly derailed by the sensation of Nathair’s hips rolling and his cock slipping even deeper.

Gwyn moved to place his hands on Nathair’s hips but the warlock caught him by the wrists and pinned his arms to the bed on either side of his head. His cock surged. He was supposed to be a knight and yet despite being significantly smaller, Nathair was able to overpower him.

This was familiar, and Gwyn couldn’t help but chuckle inwardly. Being held powerless was intoxicating. It was a sensation he’d sought but had never truly experienced since Rafe departed. It was truly something else to feel it at the hands of someone who he could love unreservedly.

Gwyn moaned, pleasure rolling over his body in waves as Nathair bounced on his cock. The warlock started slow, at first, but it wasn’t long before their moans joined together in harmony. Up and down. Up and down. Faster and harder with every stroke. The sensation of Nathair’s inner walls clamping down on his length was indescribably good.

Orgasm approached quickly. "Nathair—"

"I know. Me too," Nathair panted, sweat dripping off his forehead onto Gwyn’s chest. "Hold it for a little bit longer!"

"I don’t know if—" Gwyn groaned. He was close. So close. Nathair felt so good on his cock he could scarcely comprehend it.

Nathair’s riding reached a fever pitch. Underneath, the bed creaked, and the sound of Gwyn’s moaning filled the air. It was all he could do to hold his orgasm back, but he didn’t know if he would be able to for much longer.

Through all the noise, Gwyn barely heard the sound of Nathair speaking quietly and breathlessly in that language that he didn’t understand. He didn’t have the capacity to ponder what it meant as Nathair’s tight heat continued to send pleasure crashing through his body.

"Gwyn, look in my eyes," said Nathair.

Gwyn did so. They were so green. For a moment, the thought of orgasm fled far away as he lost himself in the depth of them.

"Will you be mine?" said Nathair. For all the ferocity of their lovemaking, Nathair’s voice was surprisingly steady. Even as he worked his ass up and down onto Gwyn’s cock, his eyes remained pinned in place, consuming Gwyn’s vision.

Gwyn blinked, startled at the question. Of all the times to ask it, it had to be asked now? "Will you give yourself to me, Gwyn?" Nathair asked, this time more urgently.

Even the most horrific battlefield had not caused Gwyn to panic as much as the tone of Nathair’s voice. He could barely think past the pleasure, and the alarm he felt made it nigh-impossible. He did the only thing he could. He spoke what dwelled in his heart. "I will," he said.

There was a strange gleam in Nathair’s eye, but Gwyn didn’t have time to ponder it. "Come for me," said Nathair, and rapture, unlike anything Gwyn had ever known, ripped through his body.

Gwyn’s back arched off the bed. His fingers balled into fists. His legs tensed and his toes curled from the sheer pleasure that slammed into him as his cock sent spurt after spurt of thick cum into Nathair.

At the same time, Nathair spilled onto his stomach. Nathair tossed his head back and groaned. Ropes of hot white cum splattered all over Gwyn’s flat stomach, pooling in the gutters between his muscles.

The pleasure that Gwyn thought would taper of did no such thing. Instead, the orgasm kept on coming. Wave after wave of mind-numbing delight washed over him one after the other until his mind went blank.

The cum that Nathair had spilled on Gwyn’s stomach moved on its own, creeping across his skin to form a strange sigil on his chest. Nathair’s eyes blazed with green fire as he spoke in that tongue that Gwyn could not understand. Gwyn could only scream as he felt the mana flowing through his body get forcefully ripped through his meridians at Nathair’s command.

The flesh under the sigil on Gwyn’s chest turned the color of alabaster. It spread across his skin and into his muscles. Each breath became more difficult than the last as Gwyn realized that his body was slowly being turned to stone.

Until his lungs were petrified, Gwyn gasped for breath. He had not anticipated the betrayal, but when he looked in Nathair’s eyes and saw nothing but regret and hurt and love, the fury that had been bubbling in his stomach faded away.

For what felt like the longest time, Gwyn laid there, staring up at the ceiling. He couldn’t move, as much as he tried. The one consolation, he supposed, was the pleasure that continued to wrack his body hours after Nathair hopped off him in tears.

Nathair returned some time later and while Gwyn had no control over his petrified body, Nathair was able to move him. The warlock helped him into a sitting position and stood in front of him with downcast eyes. "I’m sorry," said Nathair, voice breaking. "But I couldn’t let you leave."

Gwyn sighed. Inwardly, of course. He’d had a few hours to ponder what had happened and he’d come to terms with it. Truth be told, he’d been hurt at first but he wasn’t entirely surprised. He’d sensed that there was a darker side to Nathair and had elected to ignore it.

In a way, nothing had changed since his youth. Rafe had been the same way, after all, only without the magic. It was little wonder that he’d fallen for someone similar. Someone who was, at the core of their being, truly good, but had a penchant for making impulsive and incredibly selfish decisions.

"I’ll go to Altenritter," said Nathair.

Had he been able to, Gwyn would have blinked. That wasn’t what he’d thought he would hear from Nathair. If he’d had a heart, it would have been hammering against his chest.

"I—I don’t know how to explain it, but…" Nathair looked up. His green eyes were shining with tears. "But I have this feeling that… That I can’t afford to lose you… again."

Gwyn’s thoughts ground to a screeching halt. Nathair had said "again." What? What? He wanted to ask what he meant, say something, but the stone that had consumed his body permitted no such thing.

"I’ll go and see how things are. And… And if it’s safe I’ll come back. And I’ll take you." The conviction in Nathair’s voice made Gwyn’s heart ache. He’d never had anyone go so far for him.

Then, in the smallest voice that broke Gwyn’s heart, Nathair said, "But… For now… Please don’t hate me."

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