~ A Thoughtful Gift ~
by Kudara

Disclaimer: The Elder Scrolls Series world belongs to Bethesda Softworks and no infringement of copyright/trade marks is intended.

Rating: NC-17

Feedback: Always welcome, feedback is what encourages me to keep writing. Please let me know what you like and what you dislike about the story. cobaltwolf2002@yahoo.com

Revision History: 05/04/06; 08/07/06

Summary: A Morrowind short story.

Red Mountain, located almost in the center of the isle of Vvardenfell, erupted every thousand or so years, covering the land surrounding the mountain with lava and ash. Over the years since the last eruption, wind and rain had worn down the lava revealing oddly shaped boulders and sharp spires of harder rock. The entire landscape was one of steep slopes and ravines, and the occasional area where sluggishly flowing lava could still be found.

Frequent cold winds howled down from the mountain, whipping up ash from the black volcanic soil and creating blinding ash laden storms. Inhabited by blight infected wild animals, ash zombies, and the occasional wandering and frequently starving vampire, it was not a place anyone frequented unless they were certain of their ability to survive it's various challenges and even then one often found oneself rather rudely surprised.

On this night, dimly though the grey colored winds two figures could be seen struggling both through the driving, stinging wind and with one another. The taller of the two, a male, drug the much smaller, slighter figure along by bound arms. As the wind cleared, allowing the two figures to show more clearly for a moment, they revealed that the male was a tall Nord, thick of body, armored in chain, blond-haired and bearded. The smaller figure was that of a woman, dark haired and pale skinned, and fine featured in the manner of the Breton race. A dark bruise along one cheek and about the opposite eye marred her otherwise beautiful features. The fashionable, expensive dress she wore marked her as a member of the upper class, though the dress was now torn and soiled along its length. The woman stumbled and fell, and the cause of the state of her dress became clear as the man simply pulled her along the rocky ground for a moment before brutally wrenching her into a standing position. The wind slowed for a moment, long enough for her pain filled cry to be heard before the wind picked up again and carried it away.

Finally the male stopped, shoved the woman to the ground, and from the bag he carried slung over his shoulder he pulled out a mallet and stake. The woman struggled to her feet and attempted to run, but the man dropped his tools and caught up with her after on a short while, dragging her back and then slapping her hard across her already bruised face face. The woman fell to the ground and huddled there, holding her bound hands up to her face where the man's blow had split the already bruised skin of her cheek and it now bled freely.

The man hammered the stake into the hard ground and tied a length of braided cord to it, then roughly pulled the woman's bound hands away from her face and tied the other end of the cord around her bonds, fastening her to the stake.

Neither saw the dark, silent figure hidden in the shadow between two boulders up the steep, broken slope to the north watching them, nor did they notice when the figure moved, slipping quietly from shadow to shadow until it drew within hearing distance.

"No, please don't do this Magnus, please don't leave me here. I promise I'll never return home if you let me go, my father will never know," the watcher heard the woman beg, tears streaking through the ash dust that coated her face.

The man responded with an ugly smile, "Unnatural whore," he spat, "I wouldn't risk your father's wrath for you."

"Please, please don't leave me here to die," the woman pleaded, but her eyes showed her hopelessness, her knowledge that her pleas were falling upon deaf ears.

He growled angrily, "Always walking around with your nose stuck up in the air too good to pay attention to the likes of us, and then your father finds you with Henrick's daughter doing things no woman should do with another."

The woman buried her face in her bound hands with a sob, "He killed her, he just drew his dagger and killed her."

The blond man stared at her coldly, unmoved by her tears, "Agna was a good girl until you started hanging around her you slut. You talked her into doing those things with you, you're the reason she's dead now." He fell silent for a moment, staring at her, "Your father said to leave you out here for the animals or one of the wandering vampires to find. After a few days' there won't be anything left of you for anyone to stumble upon and your father can declare you lost. You can't be allowed to humiliate and embarrass your father and family with your ways."

He stared at the huddled, now quietly sobbing figure for a moment longer, "Your father meant for some animal or vampire to rip out your throat, but there's too much of a chance that you might escape. I can tell him that some bandits found you."

The harsh scrapping sound of steel being pulled out of a scabbard caused the bound woman to look up at the man. A look of horror crossed her face as she realized that he meant to kill her right now, "No!" she cried, and frantically scrambled away from the blonde man, tugging hysterically at the cord that bound her to the stake in the ground when she reached the limit of the rope.

A gurgling cry and the thud of a sword upon the dry ground caused the woman to pause in her struggles with the cord, staring in shock at the man who had brought her here. The Nord was clawing madly at his throat where a dark arrow had pierced his neck through and through. As the woman watched another arrow struck him in the chest. The man's blue eyes widened for a moment before he fell to his knees and then face forward onto the ground.

The woman stared wildly around searching for the source of the attack, not knowing whether it meant good or ill for her. A dark figure, a bow held in one hand stepped out from the deep shadows between the rocks some fifteen feet away from her.

"You seem to be in somewhat of a bind," the figure commented in a low toned feminine voice as she came nearer.

The bound woman gaped, the jest catching her by surprise. As the figure drew near enough for her to see the woman's face she let out a short scream of renewed fear and started scrambling away again from the snarling, fang-faced form.

"It's a helm silly girl," exclaimed the woman exasperatedly, pausing to take off the offending armor piece and revealing the face of a dark haired, red eyed, Dunmer woman.

The most recent fright upon everything else that had happened recently was too much for the bound woman; she slumped to the ground and began crying.

The Dunmer woman knelt beside her and pulled out a knife. "Your hands girl, hold them out so I can cut your bonds," she ordered. Trembling, the bound woman finally obeyed her sobs decreasing in intensity to the occasional gulping breath. With a quick movement the Dunmer woman drew a dagger and sliced through them before the battered woman could do more than take an in startled breath.

The wind rose again, causing both of them to turn their faces away from it and the stinging ash that it carried. "Thank you," the Breton raised her voice so she could be heard over the howling of the wind as she gingerly rubbed her bruised wrists where the leather cord had cut into them.

The Dunmer woman rose to her feet and held out one gauntleted hand to the other woman to help her. "There's a place nearby where both of us can take shelter from the storm and I can see to your injuries," she shouted.

Hesitantly the woman accepted the assistance and allowed the Dunmer to help her rise to her feet. Curiously she looked into the dark skinned woman's face. Her father had only recently been assigned to the Imperial Garrison that protected the Ebony mine at Caldera, and she had never met any Dunmer before she and her father had moved to Vvardenfell. She had become used to the red eyes and bluish-grey coloration of the dark skinned elven race, but this woman's intensely red eyes seemed to almost glow with an inner light, making them very noticeable and compelling. "Thank you," she said to the woman, not having to shout as they were standing close together.

The Dunmer nodded, squinting against the stinging wind and quickly replaced the frightening mask like helm upon her head. "What's your name girl?" the Dunmer woman asked.

The comment stung enough for the woman to momentarily forget her current situation. She absolutely hated being called a girl, she was short even for a Breton woman, but she was definitely no longer a girl. "Elisa Jurard, and I'm not a girl, I'm nineteen years old." She made an effort at the usual imperious tone she used to make up for her lack of height, but after the words were out Elisa realized that she only sounded petulant instead of assured and blushed.

A low laugh from the Dunmer woman confirmed her suspicions and she blushed harder as the two of them struggled through the wind. "I'm Llathala U'mara, Elisa Jurard," the Dunmer offered her name and then reached out to steady the younger woman as she stumbled over a patch of particularly rough ground. "Poor thing, you've had a rather rough day today haven't you."

The unexpected turn from almost mocking to kind, disrupted the tenuous control Elisa had on her emotions and she was embarrassed to feel tears rise up in her eyes as she remembered the events of the day, and the situation she now found herself. She and Agna hadn't been in love with one another; their relationship had been one of mutual lust that had begun almost as soon as they recognized their interest in one another, and had evolved into friendship after a few weeks of sharing one another's bed.

Elisa had suspected her father would not approve of her lifestyle, but never had she expected what had happened this afternoon. Unbidden her mind recalled the moment when her father had burst into her bedroom and found her and Agna together. He had shouted in anger and pulled her roughly by the hair from where she had been between Agna's thighs, then struck her twice across the face before finally releasing her. The hard blows stunned her and she had fallen to the floor where she had watched disbelievingly as he pulled his dagger from his belt and struck the defenseless Agna killing her. It had happened so quickly and unexpectedly that she hadn't the time to argue, protect or even warn the other woman.

Her vision obscured by the tears in her eyes, she stumbled again and would have fell had not Llathala caught her. Elisa heard the Dunmer woman sigh at her clumsiness, and the next thing she knew she was in the dark skinned woman's arms being carried along. Instinctively she began struggling.

"Quit it, or I'll drop you," Llathala snapped, "you're not dressed for walking in the Ashlands, and I'd like to make it to the cave sometime before morning."

Elisa stilled, suddenly afraid that the woman would not only drop her, but leave her alone out here in the cold, dark, windswept wilderness. Instead, she buried her bruised face into the hollow formed by the pauldron and helm of the Dunmer woman's armor. The dark skinned woman strode along steadily, showing no sigh that she was distressed by the Breton's weight. As time passed, and the woman continued carrying her without any sign of fatigue, Elisa wondered at the Dunmer's apparent strength and endurance. She was shorter and slighter than Llathala, but she would have thought the woman would have grown tired of carrying her by now. Suddenly the howling, stinging wind was left behind and Elisa looked up to see rough grey walls surrounding them and realized they had reached the cavern.

Llathala stopped after walking a short way into the cave and let Elisa stand on her own feet. "This cave housed some bandits a few hours ago, stay here while I move their bodies," the Dunmer woman gruffly ordered her. Before the full meaning of her words had sunk in the Dunmer woman moved away and disappeared into the gloomy depths leaving Elisa gaping after her. The Breton woman huddled uneasily against the cavern wall, starting and staring at every little sound.

Bitterly Elisa cursed her father and the belated paternal impulse that had made him decide she needed to live with him instead of her Aunt. She had lived on the mainland, in the Imperial City Marketplace District, ever since her mother had died some eleven years ago. Had friends there, lovers there, until her father had decided that her Aunt was no longer capable of taking care of her and insisted that she move to this backwater province. Then he had found out about her and...her mind shied away from remembering once again what had happened...and now he wanted to kill her.

"There's a place," Llathala's voice caused Elisa to start violently as the woman appeared out of the gloom. The Dunmer paused for a moment, taking in the renewed tears, and then continued, "a place where we can bathe and I can see how badly damaged your face is." She motioned for Elisa to follow her, "This way, it isn't far."

Pushing herself away from the wall, Elisa followed her rescuer deeper into the cave, looking around curiously. The Breton knew very little about caves and rocks, but even she could tell the walls surrounding her were limestone and wondered whether water or some other force had carved through the hard rock. They crossed a crude wooden bridge over a rapidly flowing underground stream with stacks of open crates and barrels pilled at the end. Elisa paused a moment to look down into the clear water of the stream, then glanced at the relatively smooth walls of the cavern, she could see how such a stream given enough time could have carved out these tunnels.

As they descended deeper into the caverns Elisa noted with surprise that the air seemed to be getting warmer instead of cooler as she would have thought should happen. Finally they entered a larger cavern partially flooded with water and picked their way along a dry ledge to a small grotto where a fire crackled merrily beside some bedrolls and a pile of crates and barrels. A slight unpleasant odor pervaded the air of this cavern, but Elisa could not identify the source.

"This room and the water there," the Dunmer indicated the submerged end of the cavern with a jerk of her head, "is warmed by a lava flow, it smells and tastes slightly of sulfur but its safe to bathe and even drink from," Llathala commented and started taking off her armor and piling it tidily beside one of the bedrolls.

Elisa commented, "That explains the smell and the warmer temperature."

Llathala merely grunted in reply and then sighed in relief as she removed her cuirass, taking in a deep breath and stretching. "I wish I could find some daedric armor made for women, but I've never seen a female daedra except for golden saints and everything except for their weapon and shield disappears after you kill them." The Dunmer commented as she laid the chest piece aside.

The Breton woman had not really noticed the armor before it had been dark and difficult to see anything in the ash-laden wind. Once they had arrived at the cave Llathala had disappeared before she noticed much about the armor she was wearing except that it was dark with red markings. Now she looked at the other woman's armor curiously. Even she had heard of the rare armor, it was even rarer than armor made from ebony resin, and it was said that each piece had the soul of a daedra trapped within it. Looking closer at the strange twisted scarlet markings upon the dark grey pieces, Elisa shivered. There was something about those markings that made her believe that it was true.

"Here start washing up and I'll join you in a moment. I'll see to your face after you've cleaned up," Llathala commented.

Belatedly, tearing her eyes away from the armor, Elisa realized that the dark skinned woman was holding out a rough piece of cloth and a bar of grayish looking soap. She accepted them and stared at the soap dubiously.

The Dunmer woman briefly smiled, "I wasn't expecting to stay out the night so I didn't bring much with me. I had to raid the bandit's supplies for the soap and cloths. It's not the best, but it will do to get us clean."

Embarrassed at her seeming ingratitude, Elisa murmured, "Thank you," as she took the soap.

The fire light was bright enough for Elisa to see the woman's features clearly for the first time and as Elisa looked into Llathala's face as she accepted the soap she realized how attractive the Dunmer woman was, especially with the slight smile currently playing around her dark wine colored lips. An arched eyebrow eventually informed Elisa that she had been staring at her rescuer for longer than was considered polite. The Breton woman flushed, "I'll go wash up now," she said hurriedly and turned away walking toward the water covered lower end of the cavern.

Stopping by a handy boulder she stripped off her torn and ash-soiled clothing laid it upon the stone and then tested the water with one tentative foot. To her surprise, even though Llathala had mentioned it was heated by a lava flow, the water was pleasantly warm. She moved into deeper water and knelt, sighing in enjoyment at the feel of warm water. Lathering up the rough cloth, she began washing away the grimy ash that coated her skin.

"Here, let me get your back." Llathala's voice behind her startled Elisa, as she hadn't heard or noticed the woman enter the water. An outstretched dark skinned hand appeared in her vision from over her shoulder. Hesitantly she surrendered the cloth. Tense at first, Elisa gradually relaxed as the cloth moved in soothing strokes over her back washing the last of the grime from her body.

"Are you done with this?" the Dunmer woman asked as Elisa rinsed her now clean back.

"What?" Elisa turned inquiringly toward Llathala's voice, her breath caught in her throat and the Breton woman had to struggle not to stare at the dark skinned woman's lithe, athletic body. The small, but perfectly shaped, globes of her breasts, the taunt muscled slimness of her waist, the way the water gently lapped at the barest hit of a dark triangle at the apex of her legs. Finally she noticed the cloth in the woman's hand and realized that Llathala was asking if she was done bathing.

"Oh, yes. Sorry. I guess you'll want the soap," Elisa handed over the brownish bar and turned away quickly, hoping that the other woman hadn't noticed her staring or noticed her body's reaction to what she had been staring at. Somehow though, she suspected that if she glanced at the Dunmer woman she would see that slight, amused smile once again, the one that would let her know that her stare and arousal had been noticed just as it had been noticed before over the fire.

'What is wrong with me?' Elias questioned herself despairingly, wondering how she could react lustfully to anyone after what had happened just hours ago. True, she had not loved Agna, but she had been her friend, and seeing her father murder the woman right in front of her had been a tremendous shock. Events had happened so rapidly after Agna's death that there had been no time to even shed a tear for the other woman; she had gone from the shock of her father's action to being terrified for her own life. Closing her eyes Elisa huddled deeper into the warm water grateful for the darkness that hid her from the other woman. It was difficult to think about Agna, she felt as if she wanted to cry for the blonde woman, but concerns about her own future whirled at a frenetic pace in her mind tearing and ripping at the peace needed to properly mourn.

Where could she go to escape her father? She couldn't go back to her aunt and try to explain what had happened. Her aunt would never believe that her beloved brother had killed someone, much less believe that he had ordered his only child killed. The woman would horrified that Elisa had been with another woman intimately, and would insist that she immediately get married and forget about such shameful things. How would she live? She hadn't any suitable skills with which to earn a wage, she had been taught only what was needed to marry well and keep her husband's household.

The last thought brought Elisa's mind back to her savior, Llathala dressed and acted like a rich, powerful woman. The mere fact that she wore a full suit of the rarest armor known instead of keeping it displayed under lock and key indicated that she was incredibly wealthy. If she had been a man, Elisa's father would probably have overlooked the fact she was a Dunmer, and considered her a suitable match for his daughter.

The Breton listened to the quiet sounds of the other woman washing behind her and thought about how the Dunmer woman's every move and comment revealed her surety, power, and confidence in herself. Elisa envied her that. She had once been as confident and secure in her life and the future, but that had been before her father took her away from the Imperial City and brought her to Vvardenfell. Since then her life had taken a decided turn for the worse, and today what had remained of that secure life had been completely shattered, leaving her with nothing except the clothes on her back and an uncertain future. Elisa desperately wanted to feel secure and confident once again, she hated the overwhelming feelings of fear and hopelessness that currently gripped her leaving her feeling weak and helpless.

Elisa's thoughts came around full circle as her mind brought up the image of Llathala standing in front of her waiting patiently for Elisa to hand her the soap and cloth. Just the memory of her beauty made Elisa's breath hitch and certain parts of her awaken with desire. Why she was reacting this way to her rescuer?

The young woman, even though she frequently acted frivolous and self-absorbed, had a very down to earth practical side, and that now helped her admit that part of her interest in Llathala was the purely practical hope that the woman would offer her a place to stay if they became lovers. The other part of her interest?well that part definitely had nothing to do with anything practical at all. Something about the Dunmer woman stirred Elisa, maybe it was the intensity in her red eyes and the beauty of her face and figure, or maybe it was just shock and her need for comfort, she didn't quite know, all she knew for certain was that she desired Llathala. Her blood pounded through her veins at the thought of the Dunmer woman touching her, holding her captive with the intensity of her eyes as she thrust into Elisa, filling her completely.

Elisa took in a shaky breath, it wasn't as if she hadn't desired a woman before, she certainly had, but the intensity with which she wanted to touch and be touched by Llathala was unusual. She wanted to slide her hands down the woman's body, explore the sleek muscularity of her. She wanted to find out what Llathala tasted like, what she sounded and felt like as she climaxed, and then she wanted the woman take her until she almost passed out from the pleasure.

Unsettled and slightly overwhelmed by the admission, Elisa forced herself to concentrate on more practical matters. Llathala hadn't mentioned anything past checking on her injuries, so she didn't know if the woman planned on providing someplace for her to stay already or not. As for the possibility of them becoming lovers, the woman had barely reacted to the information that she liked women instead of men, and had not reacted badly to Elisa's staring. Didn't that indicate something?

'Oh what am I thinking?' Elisa questioned herself frantically, 'I'm not seriously considering how to lure Llathala into seducing me am I?'

"Lets see how your face looks now that it's clean," Llathala's voice interrupting her thoughts caused Elisa to start, and whirl around guiltily, only to be blinded by the immediate area suddenly lighting up. Reflexively she turned her head away and covered her eyes. Llathala remarked after a second, her voice apologetic, "I guess I should have warned you I was about to cast an illuminate spell."

"Oh, I didn't know you were a mage," Elisa remarked squinting her eyes against the light. The mage light wasn't that bright, it was just the suddenness of it after her eyes had adjusted to the darkness of the cavern. She felt more than saw Llathala move closer to her right before the Dunmer woman placed her hands on either side of her jaw and lifted her face toward the light.

"Close your eyes and let me examine your face," Llathala instructed her.

Elisa mutely obeyed, acutely aware of how close the other woman's nude body was to hers and the heat of the Dunmer woman's hands on her face. In other circumstances she might have quarreled with Llathala's right to order her around, but at the moment her thoughts were completely occupied with her reaction to the Dunmer woman's touch, and with hoping Llathala wouldn't notice how fast her heart was suddenly pounding. In the next instant she sucked in her breath in pain as Llathala prodded at her bruised cheek. Elisa tried to jerk away, but the woman's hold on her face was more firm than she had guessed for she was unable to escape the other woman's grasp.

"I'm sorry it hurts, but I need to make sure the bones in your face haven't been damaged before healing the flesh," Llathala gently explained before Elisa could protest.

The angry words died unspoken on Elisa's lips; suddenly she was as concerned about her physical condition as the dark-skinned woman's physical closeness. "Oh," she murmured, steeling herself against the pain.

After a few more painful probing touches Llathala announced in a relieved tone, "You're lucky, there doesn't appear to be any damage to your cheekbones, just the flesh bruising and the cut." Her hands moved from Elisa's jaw to cover the damaged areas and the Breton woman felt the sensation of heat and tingling that indicated Llathala was healing her injuries. Elisa stood quietly, her face tilted upward, eyes still closed, enjoying the feel of Llathala's gentle hands upon her bruised face. The healing sensation faded after a few seconds, and the persistent pain that Elisa had become somewhat used to since her father had struck her, faded with it.

"Thank you," Elisa whispered as she opened her eyes and met the red ones of the Dunmer woman. Llathala's hands left her face, and Elisa was surprised at how bereft she felt without them there, how chilled her skin felt without their warmth. "A mage and a healer, isn't that somewhat unusual?" she asked curiously, trying to distract herself.

"Yes," Llathala replied, "Several years ago I found myself severely wounded, so much so that I was unable to seek help until I healed. For those three days I sorely rued the fact that I had not learned more of the healing arts." She gave Elisa a twisted smile, "I since learned what I needed to know, even if the learning was somewhat late to help me." The odd smile faded and Llathala continued speaking in a lighter tone, "I've become rather a talented healer, if I may say so myself, as well as picking up some useful skills as an illusionist."

Llathala fell silent, and an intent expression appeared upon her face as she looked down at the shorter woman, making no effort to hide the fact that she was staring appreciatively at Elisa's body. In a husky voice Llathala commented, "You're a very beautiful woman Elisa Jurard."

Elisa's breath caught in her throat at the comment, and the look in the Dunmer woman's red eyes. She felt the tell tale tingling in her nipples and knew that they had just hardened in reaction. She wasn't surprised to see Llathala's red eyes drift downward and remained there for a moment before returning to meet her own, the woman was too observant.

The Dunmer woman leaned toward her slowly. Elisa did not protest or make an effort to move away, and when their lips met, she leaned into the kiss. Lips moved against one another, tongues met and dueled. When Llathala wrapped her arms around Elisa back and waist and pulled the Breton woman's softer form tightly against her more muscular, toned body Elisa gave a soft moan of appreciation.

Long moments later, Llathala pulled back long enough to murmur, "Bedrolls."

"Yes," Elisa whispered her agreement, many more kisses and touches like the ones they had just exchanged and her legs wouldn't want to support her anyway. She made a noise of surprise and indignation as Llathala picked her up in her arms, but the Dunmer woman ignored it and the protest Elisa intended to make was forgotten as Llathala began kissing her once again. The next thing, besides the lips covering her own, that Elisa was fully cognizant of was being laid down upon one of the bedrolls and the press of Llathala's body on top of her own.

Llathala's bare thigh fell between Elisa's own and pressed into her gently, causing the Breton to shudder and arch needfully against it, coating it unmistakably with the sign of her arousal. The dark skinned woman made a sound in between a moan and a growl and pressed against her more urgently in response.

Elisa moaned in frustration, she wanted Llathala to continue, but she also wanted to touch the other woman. She appreciated being with a woman, she liked being inside them when they came, liked feeling and hearing them. She needed, wanted, to show Llathala that she was a desirable lover, give the woman a reason to invite her to live with her. Determinedly she pushed against Llathala's shoulders until the Dunmer woman pulled away from her lips with a confused look. "I want to touch you, taste you," Elisa said in a voice so husky and thick with desire that it surprised even herself.

Llathala's eyes widened for a moment upon hearing those words, then with a quick roll Elisa found herself on top of the Dunmer woman. "I'm certainly not going to object," she replied. Llathala's eyes, which Elisa had already noted seemed unusually intense and compelling, were darker, the pupils dilated. They drew in the Breton woman, capturing and binding her with their intensity. Just as suddenly she came back to herself, her heart pounding, feeling weak, almost frightened. What had just happened, she asked herself.

"Elisa?" Llathala inquired.

"Nothing, sorry," Elisa mentally shook herself, throwing off the odd moment, reminding herself that she was supposed to be impressing the Dunmer woman, giving her a reason to ask Elisa to move into her home. Not giving the woman cause to believe she was prone to odd fits. Leaning down the younger woman covered Llathala's wine dark lips with her own and gave herself over to the moment, willing herself to loose herself in the feel of the other woman's body.

Lips opening beneath her own, the feel and taste of the Dunmer's skin as she drug her teeth down the arch of a neck, the feel of the other woman's hard small nipple in her mouth as she flicked it rapidly with her tongue. Llathala's body writhing beneath her as she slowly crossed the toned expanse of her stomach, then her first taste of the other woman. Oddly different from any other woman she had ever tasted, Elisa noted, but not unpleasant. Probably just a racial difference, the Breton woman decided, in a quick moment before she slipped her fingers inside Llathala, feeling rewarded by obvious evidence of her arousal.

Llathala groaned and arched against her, thrusting herself against Elisa's mouth in demanding need. The Breton was pleased to comply, speeding up the thrusting of her fingers, suckling and flicking her tongue rapidly against the woman's clitoris. A short while later Elisa closed her eyes in pleasure as she felt Llathala stiffen and cry out as she bucked against her mouth in release, her fingers gripped tightly by the smooth slick walls surrounding them.

Elisa was still placing soft kisses upon dark wine colored tender flesh when Llathala sat up and gripped her shoulders, pulled her upward and then rather abruptly reversed their positions so the Dunmer woman was on top. The Breton woman gasped in surprise at the sudden repositioning, and then her mouth was covered by Llathala's in a possessive, demanding kiss.

Minutes later, when Llathala released her lips, Elisa scarcely had time to catch her breath before the Dunmer woman attacked her breasts with the same passionate intensity. Lips, teeth and tongue alternately nipped, raked and soothed the tender skin and nipples. As she groaned in reaction to the sensations Llathala was eliciting, Elisa wondered if something in the water had made her flesh ultra sensitive for Llathala's mouth and tongue seemed almost like brands upon her flesh, trailing heat and white-hot arousal wherever they went.

As the Dunmer woman left her breasts and trailed her mouth and tongue across her stomach Elisa could not help but moan in anticipation of Llathala's mouth upon her, if she was as sensitive down there as her breasts had been... At the first touch of Llathala's mouth, she cried out and arched into the touch, her hands reaching and gripping the edges of the bedroll for something to hold onto. It was everything and more than she had anticipated, again the unusual sensitivity making every stroke of the woman's tongue against her flesh intensely pleasurable.

"No," Elisa protested when the Dunmer woman abruptly stopped and levered her body back above the Breton's.

Llathala smiled, "Don't worry I'm not stopping," she reassured Elisa as she replaced her mouth with her hand, smoothly thrusting into the woman beneath her with two and then three fingers and beginning a light circular motion with her thumb over the younger woman's clitoris. "See."

"Yes," hissed Elisa, arching into the thrusting fingers, driving them deeper inside her.

Llathala's nostrils flared on a deeply indrawn breath as she stared down at the aroused woman beneath her, "You are so beautiful, and so passionate. I think I'll have to keep you," she whispered.

"Good," Elisa managed in between gasping breaths, she felt a moment of relief at the securing of her immediate future, but it was less important to her at this particular moment than the sensations Llathala was building inside her with every thrust of her fingers and stroke of her thumb.

Llathala stared into Elisa's dark eyes intently as she touched her as if searching for something there, then apparently seeing what she had been seeking she lowered her head and began kissing and nibbling at her neck. The Breton woman turned her head to bare the side of her neck for the other woman to have greater access; enjoying the sensation of lips and teeth against the sensitive skin of her neck.

A sudden intense pain from where Llathala's mouth was upon her neck took Elisa by surprise, and instinctively she tried to pull away, only to find that she could not, Llathala restrained her easily, pressing her into the bedroll beneath her and holding her tightly. As suddenly as it had flared the pain faded and was replaced by a much different sensation. Elisa whimpered, and as desperately as she had been trying to get away, now she strived to get closer, as another erogenous zone seemed to have blossomed at her neck where Llathala's mouth pressed against it.

The Dunmer woman's fingers, which had stilled while Elisa fought against Llathala's hold, now began moving once again thrusting and twisting into her while the woman's thumb resumed its circular motion around and over her clitoris. The two sensations, the one at her neck and the one between her legs, merged and built upon one another until Elisa was writhing in helpless need beneath the other woman. Her orgasm when it came overwhelmed her, slamming into her consciousness and body like storm driven surf. Elisa cried out wordlessly as she arched and bucked underneath Llathala as the climaxes seized and shook her one after another only releasing her when she felt the world fade away as she slipped toward unconsciousness.

She never quite lost consciousness, but she was unable to move for long moments afterward, exhausted and shaken by the intensity of her reaction. She was aware of Llathala removing her mouth from her neck and the feel of the woman's tongue flicking against her skin a few times. Then the woman gently withdrew her fingers from inside Elisa, wrapped both arms around the tired Breton and cradled her against her.

It took Elisa several minutes to gather up her scattered wits and wonder what had just happened. What had Llathala done to her that hurt so, then why after that moment of pain had it felt so very good? Uneasily she opened her eyes and raised them to meet Llathala's. Dunmer woman looked relaxed, sated, but her eyes were intent as she watched Elisa. The two of them stared at one another, Llathala looking increasingly amused as the silence went on.

"So have you come to a conclusion as to what just happened?" the Dunmer woman finally asked in a lazy tone.

Elisa's eyes widened, and she frowned slightly in confusion. When Llathala spoke she could have swore she saw... She swallowed, suddenly the pain she had felt when the Dunmer woman had held her so tightly with her mouth at her throat made only too much sense. "But..." she blurted out in confusion.

"I use illusions to hide them," Llathala responded, and now Elisa could see the long white eyeteeth only too clearly.

In numb disbelief, Elisa suddenly remembered what the Dunmer had told her earlier. Stricken with a disease for three days, so hurt that she couldn't seek the help she needed, and the healing knowledge she gained later unable to help her with the disease she had caught. If she had been thinking more clearly earlier she would have realized that Llathala was telling her she was a vampire, it was common knowledge that the vampire disease took three days to fully take hold of a person and change them.

Hysterical giggles fought to escape as Elisa realized her father had sort of succeeded in his plan after all; a wandering vampire had indeed found her and bitten her. The vampire just hadn't torn out her throat--yet--she shivered in sudden fear.

"Worried that I'm going to tear out your throat?" Llathala asked.

Elisa froze, dismayed that her thoughts had been so obvious.

"Don't be," the Dunmer responded. Her red eyes wandered possessively over the Breton woman's nude body lying along side her own then returned to Elisa's, "I did say earlier that I planned on keeping you. I've got much more entertaining and satisfying things to do with your lovely and so very responsive body. You needn't fear that I will hurt you or take too much of your blood." Llathala noticed the renewed look of fear in young Breton woman's dark eyes, "It won't hurt as much next time, and each time I bite you it will hurt less and less until it doesn't hurt at all," she reassured her.

Elisa closed her eyes and fought against the thread of arousal that those words evoked, trying to focus on the reality of what Llathala had been doing to her. The woman had driven her teeth into her throat and been feeding off her blood.

The dark skinned woman shifted suddenly, pinning Elisa's body beneath hers. Elisa squeaked in startled surprise then moaned in helpless arousal as the Dunmer woman ran her tongue over the place on Elisa's neck where she had bitten her. She breathed on the spot, sending another surge of arousal though the Breton woman. Llathala whispered, "Trying to persuade yourself that you don't want me to bite you again, that you don't want my mouth on your breasts, between your legs. How I enjoyed tasting you, thrusting my tongue inside you, exploring your soft tender flesh, filling you and feeling you come around my fingers."

The words sent fresh surges of arousal through Elisa and she couldn't stop the tiny whimper that escaped.

Llathala breathed in deeply, "I can smell your response, Elisa."

Elisa bit her lip hard, trying desperately to stop responding to the vampire's words, to drive from her mind the memories of just how wonderful Llathala's mouth had felt when she had tasted her earlier.

Llathala chuckled, "Such resistance, but your smell is getting stronger Elisa, your body isn't agreeing with you." The dark skinned woman continued after a second, "I think after you recover some more I'll be kind and satisfy you. And this time I won't leave you until I feel you come against my mouth," by the time she finished these the woman's lips were just brushing against Elisa's ear.

The younger woman couldn't prevent the groan that escaped, or the reflexive bucking of her hips in response to Llathala's words.

The dark skinned woman pulled away slightly and her red intense eyes captured the Breton's dark ones. "Surrender to me Elisa Jurard, and I will make you mine, and I am very possessive and protective of what is mine." The dark wine-colored lips covered hers, demanded entrance, and with a tiny whimper of surrender Elisa let her.

Later, as Elisa crawled her way back from the edge of unconsciousness for the second time in Llathala's arms, she felt a light touch on her cheek where it had been bruised earlier.

"I'll have to pay your father a visit sometime," Llathala commented, "and thank him for sending me such a thoughtful gift."

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