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by Niemand 23rd November 2018, 12:09 am

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by Holly 4th October 2018, 9:37 pm

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Calm Before the Storm

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Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 25th September 2018, 8:11 pm

The war god's body ached as as if he'd been too long at sparring once again; yet at the same time he felt completely relaxed as if all his muscles had been deep massaged. It had been a long time since he'd felt this particular contradictory feeling. His eyes stayed shut as he listened to the breathing of the goddess that was plastered to his body, feeling the movement of her chest. He was savoring the experience despite knowing how pressed for time they were. Each lingering minute increased the likelihood of being discovered. Neither one of them could afford that at this point. Despite this, Ares had yet to move or release his hold from Persephone.

While he'd been attending to Persephone, trying to show her how much she meant to him, how much he desired her, he had nearly forgotten that he wasn't supposed to show her that one fragile emotion that he craved and so recently discovered. Ares just had to hope that if he slipped, she would be unaware of it. It was not something that he would be able to articulate well nor would he wish her that burden of knowing. He hadn't been the only one trying to communicate without words. He'd picked up on some of Persephone's wordless cues. Of course part of his goal had been to make her incapable of speech for awhile. She had turned that around on him to leave him in the same condition.

Shifting slightly as he began to get uncomfortable, he chuckled when Persephone voiced her protest. It wasn't as if he had wanted to move either, but it needed doing. It might cause her to become upset with him, but that didn't stop his hand from taking the tie from her hair and watching it fall. She looked lovely both ways yet he recalled how free she had been when it had been down before in her quarters. It gave him an excuse to touch her hair and caress her face as he pushed it away from her cheek.

"We're going to have leave our own world soon, your highness." Ares didn't want to be the voice of reason wanting to stay in their bubble.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 25th September 2018, 9:21 pm

For the first time in a very long time, Persephone felt peace. None of her worries were drifting to the surface, and their activities had worn her out enough that none of her usual anxious energy was driving her to her feet. She was quite content to lie against Ares' chest listening to his heartbeat and inhaling his woodsmoke-leather-pine scent. She was sure she had it memorized now, to draw upon the next time she missed him, but part of her worried that it would vanish if she opened her eyes.

She whined in protest when he shifted under her, threatening to withdraw his comfortable warmth. A chuckle rumbled through him, making her smile as he removed the tie from her hair. Her curls spilled down her back, tickling her skin and making her squirm closer to him as he stroked her cheek. Opening one eye, she smiled sleepily up at him.

There was a rich warmth in her chest that didn't fade when he drew away. She didn't have a name for it, but she enjoyed the sensation. It made her feel playful and, dare she say it, happy. She doubted he'd like it much if she informed him of the latter fact, but it hardly mattered.

"Says who?" She drawled, both eyes opening as she stretched slowly and made a noise of contentment. "Unless it's an emergency, anyone who comes knocking can be told to come back later."

Perhaps she ought to have been more concerned with being discovered. She was still married, though she chose to ignore it, and Ares was presumed to be with another. It wouldn't reflect well on either of them if someone found them in such a compromising position, but Persephone didn't care. What she felt was too good not to cling to for as long as she could.

"Just a few more minutes?" She bargained, sitting up slightly so that she could kiss him. "Please?"

It was strange to say the words. Persephone had never really wanted to stay with someone this way before - she'd always done her best to leave the Underworld and Olympus precisely on the allotted day because she couldn't bear to be there any longer. Now she just hoped that she could draw this out as long as she could because she couldn't stand to go back to the Underworld. Her quarters would feel so empty without him there.

"I'm not even sure my legs will work," she joked, wiggling her toes experimentally to explore the pleasant soreness in her thighs. "You might have to lift me out of bed."




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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 25th September 2018, 10:49 pm

Ares' eyes were draw to the goddess' movements, appreciating her body but then he laughed in pure amusement at her statement. "Unless it's an emergency, anyone who comes knocking can be told to come back later." It was a sentiment that he agreed with. While it wouldn't shock anyone that Ares had bedded yet another woman who belonged to another, it would likely shock everyone that Persephone was the one in his bed. As far as he knew she had never once cheated on the King of the Underworld.

His laughter ceased when she asked for a few more minutes. 'She said, please ,' The fact floor him. It wasn't something he ever expected to come from her lips let alone directed towards him. The laughter hadn't died from his eyes but some lust entered them again as he glanced down to her legs. If he tried to 'help' her, they might not leave the bed for a few more hours. Battling with his desire, he was able to partially suppress it as a thought came to him unable to hide the cheshire grin. "Whatever you say, highness."

Ares knew that Persephone had been working on her wording when she spoke with him lest she give him a loophole to exploit. That was why he was relieved to find out that he was allowed in the underworld while changed into a dog. Her previous wording to him had barred him from coming unless on official business. Yet, it seemed since it was official business when he'd come to find a way to get out of the form Artemis cursed him with since he wouldn't be able to fulfill his duties that way.

Bending his head down he captured her mouth with his own, giving her a lingering kiss before moving from under her. He gave himself enough space to scoop her up and over his shoulders in what the mortals termed 'fireman hold'. He took her through the curtain to the front of his rooms to set her on the couch. "You look very lovely flushed."

He'd told her that before and even in a different context it still held true. She looked beautiful whether blushing with desire or burning with anger.

Going to the table he poured a goblet of ambrosia and brought it back to the couch and handed it to the goddess. "Your highness."
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 26th September 2018, 1:12 am

She didn't even spot her slip until she was already upside down.  She hadn't been serious when she'd invited Ares to help her out of bed, yet here she was with her face in the small of his back as he carried her across the room.  She was the tiniest bit disappointed in herself - she'd been working so hard on closing any loopholes in her wording - but it was quickly covered over by a rush of amusement that made her giggle.

"Put me down, caveman!" She protested halfheartedly, twisting in his grip to try and adjust her position so that she could see something other than his tanned skin.  He paid her no mind, finally depositing her on his sofa where she swooned gratefully into the cushions as the blood drained from her head.  

"You look very lovely flushed."

The flush on her cheeks was his fault on both counts.  The first from his attempt at playing Tarzan and the second because of the compliment he'd given her.   She'd never really believed his sweet nothings before because she'd assumed there was no possibility of any real meaning behind them.  Now, moments after she'd been curled happily against his chest, she was more inclined to give them the benefit of the doubt.  

She smiled as he pressed a goblet of bubbling ambrosia into her hand, nodding her thanks as she swiped a spilled bead of the liquid off the side of the cup and deposited it on her tongue.  Curling her legs up under her, she shifted to lean against the arm of the couch, which afforded her a better view of Ares.  There was no sense in hiding her admiration - he'd stared at her plenty, she could do the same - and she couldn't help but giggle a tiny bit as she studied his broad back over the rim of her goblet.

That pleasant warm feeling in her chest hadn't faded in the slightest, even though he now stood apart from her.  She'd initially blamed it on the heat that seemed to roll off him in waves, but now it seemed to be something she was feeling.  It wasn't amusement, nor was it lust.  It could have been a cousin of desire, but she supposed it was closest to contentment.  It made sense - they were both satisfied and had managed to refrain from needling one another aside from his literal take on her earlier joke.  

Shifting further into the cushions, she rested her cheek on her forearm and settled in to bask in the warmth of her contentment.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 26th September 2018, 1:20 pm

Tearing his gaze away from the delectable site, Ares turned to pour his own drink. Persephone was not making it easy in the slightest for him to rein in his desire. She might not be aware of it, but her action was like teasing a hungry dog with a steak. He had to keep his back to her as he regained control of himself, taking a pull from his goblet. 'Damn her for giggling!'

When his eyes beheld how comfortable the goddess was reclined on his couch, his lips pulled up into a smirk. Who would have thought that she would be so relaxed in his company? She'd faked it well enough during their games when she wasn't distracted. For her to be truly complacent? Approval and warmth gleamed in his eyes. Pride welled that she could feel that way and that she would be so unabashed in how she gazed at him. Unable to resist he arched a brow. "Like what you see, highness?"

The first time they had come together in her room, he'd only been moderately apprehensive about the scars on his back. When bedding a mortal it was of no concern to him. With Persephone, it was different. She had eased those fears though so he felt no shyness about them this time.

Placing his cup aside he advanced towards her sprawled form. It was a rare thing to see her like this. While he would like to have many more memories of her in this state, he wanted to make this one last. Taking her cup, he set it on the floor as he climbed atop her kissing her as he did so. It was entirely Persephone's fault for being so incredibly arousing and unresistable.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 26th September 2018, 2:09 pm

Persephone could have laid there and watched him for hours without getting even the slightest bit bored. She thought she'd made an excellent effort to memorize every inch of him that she could reach earlier, but even now she was finding things that her touch had missed. From the faint difference in colour between the scars and the rest of his skin, the way the paler scar tissue crisscrossed over itself, creating patterns and lattices across his back, to the tiny red marks on his shoulders from her nails when he'd tipped over on the bed. He fascinated her, and she wondered if she'd ever know him entirely. Every time she looked there seemed to be something new that she'd never noticed before. She hoped she got the chance to find out someday, but she was no oracle, and part of her didn't want to know. If this was to be the last time, she would prefer to hold on to her hopes.

He caught her staring; one brow arched as he asked her if she liked what she saw. She didn't bother denying it, a bright grin parting her lips.

"Absolutely," she replied mischievously, relinquishing her cup into his grasp as he bent over her. With her hands freed, she wasted no time reaching up to run her fingers through his hair as his lips connected with hers.

Kissing him was something else she could have happily done for hours. She relished every touch, especially his kisses. She was still learning some of the subtler points of physical affection after her isolation, but he was an excellent teacher. Every time she found herself in his arms, he managed to make her gasp or laugh in delight, and she counted herself lucky. He had a way of making her feel like she was the only woman in the world that mattered, and she dreaded the day when she wouldn't be able to enjoy it anymore.

The thought made the warmth in her chest pulse in a way that nearly tripped over the line between pleasurable and painful. The tension faded as quickly as it had come as she let her hands begin to drift, soothing herself with the sensation of his skin under her fingertips that was rapidly becoming familiar. She could feel his warmth again, and she made a noise of contented happiness as she sat up to be closer to him.

"So much for leaving our little world," She drawled, looking up at him from under her lashes during one of the brief breaks between kisses.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 26th September 2018, 3:34 pm

His hair was something from all of their stolen moments he noticed she seemed to like to touch. It was mutual as he loved to touch hers as well. It wasn't something he could explain even to himself. He just liked how it looked and felt. That she hadn't tied it up again gave him great pleasure.

With one hand supporting him by her waist and the other on the arm of the couch, he wasn't free to reciprocate touching her yet. He was free to enjoy her boldly exploring hands.

"So much for leaving our little world."

Chuckling, Ares confessed half teasing, "Mmm, it's completely your fault for the delay."

And delay it he would as long as he could. Put off the rest of the world and the fallout. Too soon they would have to revert to the roles they had to play amongst the immortals. She would have to resume her duties and he, he would have to lock everything tightly down. It would cause pain to both of them and he will have to pretend that he feels nothing on his end. Until then, they had right now.

Recapturing her lips there might have been a bit of desperation he let through. Putting more weight on his knees, Ares lifted his hand to place it on her hip and slowly traveled up until it came to rest when he felt her heartbeat. His thumb stroked the spot as he broke their kiss and rested his forehead against hers, eyes shut. 'This,' he thought. 'This is happiness.' He rather found he liked the feeling.

He thought he'd been happy before. It had been fleeting and was shallow now that he had a basis of comparison. It terrified him as well as caused elation. It also opened up sorrow because he knew that he couldn't share this with anyone. Not yet.

"You must know that you are the most gorgeous creature I have ever seen?" It wasn't a lie. That had been the thought that crossed his mind when he'd encountered her for the first time. It hadn't been so shocking that others would see it and try to win her.


Last edited by Niemand on 27th October 2018, 9:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 26th September 2018, 4:28 pm

She laughed at his teasing, luxuriating in the sound of his amusement. His laughter wasn't an unfamiliar sound, but often it came with edges clad in anger or sarcasm. The tone he'd made now was softer - genuinely amused and open - and she practically glowed with pride that she was the one amusing him.

"I didn't think you'd mind," she murmured coyly, leaning into him as he kissed her again. His kisses grew needier for a moment, only for his pace to slow again as his hand traced from her hip to where her pulse beat in her chest. His forehead came to rest against hers, and on instinct, she cupped his face in her hands. She wondered what he was thinking, but she didn't pry. Instead, she kissed the tip of his nose and wondered if he could feel her heart skipping beats.
She was about to ask what he could feel when he spoke again.

"You must know that you are the most gorgeous creature I have ever seen?"

This time it felt like her heart had stopped altogether. That same strange pressure rose up in her chest and squeezed the air out of her lungs, killing her words on her tongue. Ares thought she was the most beautiful thing he'd ever seen? Had someone put something in his Ambrosia? Surely the god who'd spent several centuries with the goddess of love and beauty wouldn't place a mere agricultural goddess over his past lover. Even with her skepticism, Persephone still found herself staring dumbfounded at the war god, hardly believing her ears.

She didn't have the words to thank him. She considered and then discarded several witty quips and comments, deeming them all too flimsy and trite. What did you say to someone that had just declared you the pinnacle of beauty in their eyes?

It wasn't fair that he was so good at reducing her to a tongue-tied mess. She wanted to tell him exactly how handsome she thought he was, but her words would have sounded fake after his pure honesty, no matter what she did. Her only recourse was to make a small sound of surprise and adoration and show him how she felt. She kissed his nose again, then his cheeks and forehead - every inch of his face that she could reach before she returned to his lips.

Even her actions weren't quite enough to communicate the pleasant ache in her chest that made her wish she could stay with him for eternity and never have to worry about anything else. She hoped he would understand somehow because it was the best she could do until the knots in her tongue unwound.



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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 26th September 2018, 6:32 pm

What he'd told her wasn't a lie. It was also the closest that he would ever get to telling her those words that he dared not even think too closely on. If he did then he would be filled with self-recrimination. Daring to open his eyes, he searched her gaze hoping she would know he was speaking the truth. Half hoping and half fearing that she would know what he didn't say. The other half hoped and feared that she would only take it as another compliment and flattery that he bestowed on her whenever she would allow him to get away with it. He nearly laughed at the expression on her face, but didn't because he was too anxious for her response. He was rewarded with a sound that could only come from Persephone which caused an answering smile to blossom on his face in relief.

She was the only one who had ever kissed his face before and while he found it amusing, he wasn't sure what else he felt about it other than it was Persephone. His restraint was lost the moment she returned her lips to his. While before they had taken their time to pour as much emotion into their actions and memorize each others bodies and responses, Ares was lost to the moment. Telling her with his body what he could not voice vocally that he understood and accepted what she gave him.

-----

This was something he could get used to. It was also something he shouldn't want. The warm body of the goddess and her unique scent of jasmine, vanilla, and sunshine that he associated with Persephone wrapped around him. He hadn't believed that was an actual smell until he'd actually had and was able to place it. If he didn't know what lay ahead of them he would have said he had died and gone to the Elysian Fields. As it was, this was the closest Ares would ever get to it. Stealing one more kiss from Persephone, he smiled and disentangled himself from her. Sitting up, he stretched and then looked back at Persephone lips twitching. "Completely your fault, highness."

Gazing at her, he considered her knowing that women didn't like to be sweaty and sticky debated opening his mouth. She could always use the passages to get to her room without a soul suspecting she'd spent time in his bed. However, she'd still have to go all that way...This being 'nice' was new to him so he was unsure if what he was about to say would be considered rude. "Would you like me to draw you a bath?"

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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 26th September 2018, 7:32 pm

Persephone had thought she felt peaceful the first time she'd found herself in Ares' bed. She'd been entirely wrong because what she felt lying beside the war god on his couch was utter bliss. Nothing mattered but the two of them at that moment, and she was more than happy to keep it that way. He seemed to agree, smiling at her as he stretched and sat up. For her part, an answering smile became a theatrical pout as he jokingly blamed her for their latest tumble.

"You're welcome," she replied coyly, rising from her prone position on the cushions to perch behind him, wrapping her arms around his chest and resting her chin on his shoulder. They'd spent more than a year avoiding the attraction that they'd discovered before their encounter in her quarters - ironically just a few hallways away - and she'd had quite enough of it. Neither of them seemed to want to deny it anymore anyway, so she had no qualms about making up for lost time.

His offer to run her a bath surprised her. She hadn't thought Ares to be one for such gestures, though she did recall teasing him about pet names before their first tryst. It was a surprisingly sweet question, and she couldn't help but be flattered by his attentiveness. She'd never had anyone treat her in such a way, and surprise put a flush on her cheeks as she settled herself more comfortably against his back.

"That depends," she murmured, briefly extricating one arm to push her tumbled curls out of her eyes as she considered his offer. The thought of a warm bath sounded delightful, but she was loath to leave his side, especially when every moment that passed brought her closer to having to return to the Underworld. Being able to spend time with him without having to worry about whether her hair looked too grimy was tempting, but her anxiety was beginning to get the better of her.
"Are you going to come to keep me company? Or are baths beneath the god of war?"

She laughed softly and pressed a kiss to the skin that joined his neck to his shoulder, half amused by her own joke, half delighted by the whole situation. It wouldn't bother her if he said no - there was undoubtedly something more pressing that he had to attend to than keeping her company while she washed her hair - but there was hardly any harm in asking. She doubted he would complain about her wanting to stay nearby.


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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 26th September 2018, 8:43 pm

Knowing better than to open his mouth to comment about how much her flushed appearance became her. His mind had stalled once again when her arms had wrapped around him. Nor had he expected her to place her head so comfortably on his shoulder. While he and Aphrodite had many tumbles, neither one were really for lingering or overt affection. He would have thought it would be uncomfortable, yet it wasn't. It was strange, but not as awkward as he thought it would be. Dare he say that it was nice?

"Are you going to come to keep me company? Or are baths beneath the god of war?"

Before he could give a quip back with a sarcastic, 'that's why I have a bath in my quarters', she'd laughed and her lips touched his back causing his eyes to widen in surprise. While she'd touched his scar tissue yes, but pressing her lips to it? It caused a shiver to travel up his back. Turning, he grabbed her and pulled her into his lap, one arm under her legs as he gave her a lewd grin. "What and miss how you look with water dripping off of you?"

She could complain about him having a one track mind, but it was partly her fault. He thought twice before he made sure his grip was secure as he stood with his in his arms and carried her with him back towards where his bath was located. Ares had thought about leaving her on the couch, but was in the mood to indulge her clinginess. It had nothing to do with the fact he didn't want to be parted from her just yet either. He was very thankful for this modern day and that they had adapted to indoor plumbing. While he was a traditionalist in some things, he like having a mixture when it came to the bath. While in keeping with the ancient style, he incorporated the piping system.

With a wave of a hand he had the water started as he descended the stairs to sit on one of the stone benches with Persephone on his lap. Placing kisses along her throat, he briefly wondered if this was how things would have been if his uncle hadn't taken her as his own. Banishing the thought, he pulled back to asked teasingly, "Shall I wash your back too, your highness?"
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 26th September 2018, 9:32 pm

She knew she'd done something right when, between one blink and the next, he'd reached around and swept her back into his lap to grin at her. There was a lascivious edge to the expression that made her stomach turn over in anticipation. Evidently, she'd been right about his lack of qualms with staying nearby too. She rolled her eyes at his quip, although the effect was somewhat spoiled by the laughter that bubbled out of her throat when he scooped her up and carried her into the bath with him.

It was nice to see him so relaxed and almost playful. Persephone had only seen him behave this way on rare occasions - once in her quarters, and once as a dog, which didn't entirely count. His usual sardonic expressions made him imposingly handsome, but there was something about his genuine smiles that made him even more attractive. It was glaringly apparent that she found him attractive, but someday she'd have to figure out a way to put it in words - it was only fair, given his earlier moment of soul-baring honesty. They both had their walls - it was an unfortunate side-effect of life around Olympus - so she knew how much it had taken for him to let her in, even just for a brief moment. She wanted to be able to give him the same thing - total openness - so that he could try and understand her the way she tried to understand him.

Unfortunately, today wouldn't be that day. The kisses he was applying down the side of her throat were embarrassingly effective at reducing her to a sighing, delighted puddle. It was almost embarrassing in general, really, how pliable she'd become under his hands. If this had been their first tryst, she might have been concerned, fearing that he might try and manipulate her somehow. Thankfully, it wasn't, and she had no qualms about tipping her head to the side to allow him greater freedom.

"If you're so inclined," Persephone retorted, the effect of her dry tone spoiled when her voice came out breathy instead of brazen. Again, it would have been embarrassing if she were with anyone else, but it was hard to be ashamed when they'd been within inches of one another for hours.

"Shall I help you too?" She teased, reaching down to dip her fingers in the rapidly rising water before flicking the droplets at him.


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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 26th September 2018, 10:22 pm

Blinking at the water that hit his face, Ares stared at the woman in wonder before he smirked and raised a brow in challenge. "Oh, I count on you helping me, no doubt about that."

The thought of her helping him or him helping her didn't put him off in the slightest. While he knew that he would have to curb his desire, he liked these moments. They hadn't argued, misunderstood each other, gotten angry, or irritated with each other yet. Today despite being a dog, had to rank up there as one of the better days he's had. If he thought about it, that wasn't really saying much that he had enjoyed being a dog save that it was because whose company he was in. Never had he spent an entire day with one person before and not wanted to leave.

Placing his hands at her hips he began to massage the muscles there with his thumbs while he dipped his head back down to place alternating bites and kisses along her throat before back off in favor of watching her facial expression. Ares planned on getting her as relaxed as he possibly could at the same time he was able to still judge if he was doing it right by the sound she made and the expressions given. He'd found that the more distracted she was, the more she let out. The theory worked on most people with distraction, but Ares liked this format when it came to her.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 26th September 2018, 11:19 pm

Persephone resolved to never forget the dumbfounded look on the war god's face when she dared to flick bath water at him. If there was ever a situation when she needed to get his attention, or he was misbehaving, it might come in handy.

He's always misbehaving, the little voice in her mind prodded her. He is the god of war after all.

She had to acknowledge that it had a point. That was part of Ares' charm - his rogueish tendency to ignore or disagree with any rule laid in front of him. If, for example, she told him that she didn't want him to drink Ambrosia, she was certain he'd puzzle out a way to get around her rule within minutes. She'd found it frustrating when they'd first encountered one another, but she'd come to admire it. It took a not-inconsiderable amount of brains to problem-solve the way he did. Part of her wished that she had his talent for puzzles, but the rest of her was quite content to admire it from afar. She spent enough time in her mind without the added help of additional intelligence.

"What, do you need me to wash behind your ears?" She laughed, tipping her head back again as he leaned in to resume his path down her throat. She'd meant to tease him further, but any thoughts she might have had swiftly disappeared when his thumbs began to massage her hips, and he began to alternate kisses with gentle nips that left her gasping. As always, he wasn't playing fair, but she wasn't in any mood to stop him. Between the warm water beginning to lap at her thighs and his touch, she could have melted right then and there.

"Are you trying to turn me into a puddle?" She managed to gasp when he ceased tormenting her with those delightful kisses and nips. "Because it's working."

Once upon a time, she wouldn't have admitted it. She would have done almost anything to push Ares away or deny that she was even attracted to him in the slightest. She'd given up on it long ago, but she had to marvel that she'd ever been able to deny him.

That was before he went through Tartarus for you , the little voice in her head quipped.

Again, it had a point.

Leaning in, she wrapped her arms around his neck and settled her cheek in the crook of his neck with a contented sigh. His thumbs continued to rub the soreness out of her muscles, and she let her body sag against him slightly.

"See? Puddle," she murmured.


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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 26th September 2018, 11:53 pm

A laugh came from his throat and he teased her back, "You've realized my fiendish plot which means that I must be losing my touch."

That had been Ares' plan. To get her as relaxed as he could make her. Unsure of what her life was like with his uncle, he had a suspicion that she didn't get too many massages. He supposed having strong calloused hands were good for one thing. As he worked her muscles he realized that he'd laughed and been more unguarded with her in the past day then he'd been in years around anyone. He nearly paused in his ministrations as the fact sunk in before he was jerked out of his thoughts by Persephone's movement. That did cause him to still for a second before resuming with a rueful smile on his face.

"See? Puddle." He would have missed it if her mouth hadn't been close to his ear. A soft chuckle escaped at her admission and the way she was trusting him so openly amazed him. It also caused that bittersweet feeling that he suppressed. It had been what he'd been hoping for though wasn't it? There was nothing nefarious thought up or going through his mind. He just wanted to please her at least once and have it end on a good note.

There had been an idea floating around in his mind that he wasn't sure about. It could go either way or even a third when it came to Persephone. He would have to try and be optimistic about it and hope that his deviation didn't come back to bite him in the ass. Although if he went by statistics, his odds weren't that great. That just made him want to do it even more which he knew didn't make sense to most people. It would ease some of his guilt and supposed that it was selfishly motivated then.

"Then I suppose I should stick around to make sure that you don't drown." With a wave of one of his hands he turned the water off before he went back to where he left off.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 27th September 2018, 1:20 pm

Despite the rougher patch in the middle, Persephone decided, she'd had a perfect day. She'd discovered a new friend - who'd turned out to be an old friend - and gotten to generally laze about with Ares, which wasn't something she'd ever thought would happen. Even the stress of releasing him from his canine form seemed justified in the face of how much she was enjoying herself.

Past-Persephone would have been scandalized to learn that her future self was genuinely enjoying herself in the company of the war god that the Olympian population generally regarded as a thorn in their collective side. She would have been damn near apoplectic to learn that she'd be doing it while stark naked in a bathtub, but perhaps that was a sign of just how much things had changed. Past-Persephone had shied away from anything and everything associated with Ares, while the Persephone of the present craved closeness; his skin on hers, breathing in his smell and never wanting to let go.

"You're going soft," she teased, her words fading into a murmur of approval as his hands worked their way over her skin. In fairness, she was too -even her mental defences were crumbling in the face of her desire to be near him. If she wasn't careful, she'd be an open book for anyone, not just Ares, to read.

A problem for another time, she thought, trailing her fingers over the shorter hairs at the nape of his neck as her eyes fluttered shut. The water was perfectly warm around her, and the soothing sounds of the ripples lapping against the tiled sides of the bath only added to the heaviness of her eyelids. She didn't want to fall asleep and risk missing even a minute with him, so she pried them open and distracted herself by peppering tiny kisses along the side of his neck.

"Oh, poor you," she chuckled, shaking her head in mock exasperation. "Here I was thinking you were going to stay because you enjoyed my company."

"My mistake." She smiled, nuzzling her cheek against his shoulder.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 27th September 2018, 1:48 pm

"You're going soft." It was meant to be a tease, Ares knew that so he he didn't allow it to effect the movements of his hands or his expression. That one sentence struck very deep though and it had been a sentiment he'd already known. It was one of the many things he'd begun to piece together that was making a very large picture that he was uncomfortable with and did not want to dwell on. If he decided to dwell on it, the moment would be ruined. This was not the time, not when he had Persephone at his mercy or he was at hers rather. If she thought the delightful kisses were going to distract him, she had another thing coming.

'That's part of the dilemma isn't it? Enjoying her company.' Telling the voice to shut up, he wasn't sure if he barely breathed, "You have no idea," aloud or not.

Ares focused on enjoying the moment. The chips would fall where they may, there was nothing he could do about that as the die had already been cast. There was the fact he didn't want to shatter the atmosphere either. This was the longest they'd been in each other's company let alone not fighting or on the verge of it. In any other circumstance it would have been disconcerting rather than pleasant.

Letting go of Persephone, he reached out and grabbed a sponge to start on her back ignoring where the 'mistake' comment wanted to take his mind. Eyes locked on her flawless skin, he just gave a noncommittal response as he began to wash the goddess. He'd not have this chance to experience this again so he memorized everything and took pleasure in the fact that Persephone was enjoying herself as much as he was.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 27th September 2018, 2:45 pm

His noncommittal noise caused her eyebrows to draw together, though she didn't move as his hands lifted from her back. Was something wrong? Had she said something and upset him? She was half tempted to look up and check, but it felt wrong to move when his hands returned, and he began to push the sponge over her back, trailing warm water down her shoulders.

She forced her anxiety down. If she could trust Ares enough to let her walls down, she could trust him to tell her if something was on his mind. She could only assume that he trusted her too, but she knew it didn't come quickly to either of them. People would take advantage of honesty. Honesty got you in trouble. Honesty broke your heart. He'd sounded almost heartbroken when he'd told her she was gorgeous, and she suspected she'd sound equally so when the time came to go their separate ways.

What was that famous mortal saying? Parting is such sweet sorrow?

"Was that non-committal noise in response to my saying you enjoyed my company, or that I made a mistake?" She couldn't help herself - her curiosity was gnawing at her, and even her desire to soak up every second in his company couldn't stop the words from falling off of her tongue. She hoped he wouldn't mind too much and understand that she wasn't upset - just curious. Even after all their closeness, his mind was still more or less a mystery to her, and her inquisitive nature wouldn't let her leave it be.

She wanted to tense up, half fearing his response, but a deep exhale allowed her to stay relaxed under his hands. Everything was okay - it had been an innocent question with no malice behind it - he'd understand that, surely. Almost as a pre-emptive apology, she began to return his earlier favour, kneading the muscles of his shoulders gently. She hummed softly under her breath, scooping warm water up and letting it run down over the areas she was massaging. She was no muse - her singing was mediocre at best - but so long as she didn't have a specific tune to follow, her humming sounded pretty enough.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 27th September 2018, 3:51 pm

Instincts flared telling the god that he should keep his mouth shut and not reply to her question so quickly or if at all. Keeping his hands busy he didn't pause in his ministrations. Why, why did she always have to push? Couldn't she have let this go? It wasn't as if it would have been a novel notion. She'd allowed him a pass when they'd come back from their excursion in Tartarus. Perhaps because she was off her game then? She had been worried about getting the sword back and returning to Hades' side before he noticed her prolonged absence.

'That's part of what you love about her though. That tenaciousness of hers.' That same trait drove him crazy.

As if she didn't expect a response from him, or that he wouldn't be so forthcoming, he felt her hands at his shoulder and the vibration of her humming. Unbidden, a rueful expression crossed his face before he sighed fighting down the turbulent emotions raging and warring inside him. Knowing he had to be careful, this wasn't Aphrodite he was dealing with, Ares cursed mentally. This had been going so well too. In the beginning before he learned through what she was trying to get across non-verbally, he'd planned on only his heart breaking. He'd had to change his strategy when he realized that she cared for him at least to classify him as a friend.

'Selfish.' That was a defining and driving trait of his own, wasn't it? Rather than just getting her irate and severing any ties with her after she'd evened their obligations to one another which would have saved her any hurt in the long run, he'd had to complicate things. He'd been selfish unable to take her insulting herself like that. Trying to placate him when he was at fault. And she was doing it again with actions instead of words. That, that caused a sharp pain that was full of so many mixed emotions and causes.

Reaching up, he took one of her wrists in his hands and brought it down, thumb stroking over the pulse point as he stared at the curled fingers. Stared at them rather than at her face in order to be able to get the words out hopefully her getting angry or taking it the wrong way. To try and keep him from getting angry or her misreading the anger or anything else that might show up in his gaze as well. "You don't have to try and appease me."

Was this what she had become? That sick roiling feeling was in his gut. To think that she had to do the same to him to keep his attention? Sometimes one needed to be slapped or brought up on accounts. She had done that to him a time or two had she not? If she hadn't those times, his 'messes' would have been a bit bigger.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 27th September 2018, 4:16 pm

Her humming filled the silence, covering over the anxiety that was pouring into her with every second that he was silent. Gone was the gentle teasing, though he never ceased in his washing of her back with the sponge. She'd done it again - put her foot in her mouth and spoiled a good thing - and she couldn't decide if she wanted to curse, or cry, or both. She would do neither here, but something irreparable had shifted between them, and her heart sank.

All sound stopped when he took her wrist in his hand, drawing it down to look at it with a strange expression on his face. She hadn't seen that particular look before - a sort of almost-sadness that made her heart pang. She wanted to ask him what was wrong, but she also didn't want to make the same mistake twice. One of these times she was going to have to learn to hold her tongue, and it might as well be now.

"It only seemed fair," she murmured, keeping her hand relaxed in his grip as he studied her curled fingers. Her other arm had stilled, hand continuing to rest on his shoulder as she waited for the proverbial shoe to drop.

She'd known it was a 'when' more than an 'if,' but she'd still hoped she would be able to delay things. Unfortunately, her loose tongue had spoiled the party, and now she was going to have to deal with the consequences.

At least he isn't angry , she consoled herself, sitting back to study his mournful expression and wishing that she could go back in time to undo her mistake.

"I was the one who had to go and start thinking again." She smiled wanly, hoping that the joke might ease some of the tension she could feel building in him as he fixed his gaze on her hand rather than her face.

Damn it all. Why couldn't she just have let it go? They'd both been enjoying themselves, and now it just felt like someone had wrapped her chest in linen and was starting to pull it tight.

"I didn't want to upset you," she murmured, eyebrows drawing together as a hot flush of shame ran up the back of her neck.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 27th September 2018, 4:46 pm

The more she spoke, the more Ares wanted her to stop. It had taken all of his self-control to not instinctively tighten his grip with anger. It wasn't directed towards her per se but once again towards the experiences and those that had shaped her to think that was the only option. It sickened him to think that she still thought she would have to do that. While logically they'd danced around each other for years, it had only been the past few that either had really exposed more of themselves to each other rather than just cracks. They seemed fated to causing injury to the other every time they tried to show a different facet of themselves.

It would be so easy to end it here. She was hurt and he was was upset and she would likely blame herself again before going to getting angry at him. Hadn't he been the one to instigate this entire debacle? Last time he'd left her, she'd been angry enough at him to follow him. This time, he dind't think she would if he cruelly broke her. She was going to end up broken regardless would she not? That thought alone was too painful to think about. He'd been selfish and she was going to pay the price in the fallout.

"I didn't want to upset you."

She might not have meant to, but hadn't he meant to upset her? While he might not have meant to take advantage of her or manipulate her, hadn't he still done it whether it was subconscious or not? He'd known after spending time with her in 'home' how lonely she was. How she'd responded to him after her initial resistance had been shoved aside when they'd slept together in her rooms. And how she accepted his apology in the only manner he knew how to convey.

'This was a mistake.' He just should have allowed her to believe what she wanted and leave without complicating matters. This was what he did though wasn't it? Complicate simple matters.

Kissing her wrist, he released it and had to breathe to keep that pool of anger checked along with the hurt and the pain. Even so, he wasn't sure if he was trying to convince her or himself when he defiantly hissed, "I'm not my father!"
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 27th September 2018, 5:26 pm

It felt like her ribs ought to be cracking under the band of pressure that wrapped around her like a straightjacket. She felt like she could hardly get a breath in as she tried to process what was going on. The tension between them had turned from pleasurable to painful, thick enough to cut with a knife, and she realized with a sinking heart that this felt very similar to how things had been in Thrace.

No, no, no. Not again. Please not again. Persephone wanted to cry out, to ask him what she'd done to upset him so much, to ask him what she could do to fix it, but it seemed that every time she tried to apologize, he only got more upset.

Was she cursed? Was everything good she laid her hands on destined go sour? She'd been happy just a little while ago, and now her throat was feeling increasingly tight. The kiss he placed on her wrist felt like a final nail in a coffin.

You knew this was coming, the little voice in her head pointed out helpfully. Somehow it didn’t make anything better.

"I didn't say you were," she rasped, nearly choking on the words There were no tears yet, though her eyes felt alarmingly glassy. The ache in her chest was getting worse too, and she found herself wrapping her arms around herself in an attempt to ease it.

"I don't understand." She didn't want to move off of his lap, but his release of her wrist indicated that he'd had enough of her - that he was going to disappear again, precisely as she'd feared. "What brought this on?

There she went, asking questions again. Perhaps that was what had upset Ares - her constant chattering and queries. He seemed to enjoy his solitude, so maybe her noisiness had put him off? She didn't know, and she doubted she ever would. His responses were cryptic at best when he was in a mood.

She hesitated to climb off his lap, watching his expression for any clues to what might be going on inside his head. There were none, as always, but she felt she had to check. Her reluctance to let him go hadn’t waned with her understanding, and part of her still hoped that there could atill be a happier ending.

“Do you want me to stay?” She asked softly, hlf dreading the answer.



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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 27th September 2018, 6:44 pm

The disgust and self recrimination churned in Ares' gut. The war god had been warring with himself for quite awhile but had been able to cease and desist for a few blissful hours. Persephone had been able to make him forget for those precious moments that he was the monster she thought him to be. Maybe he'd been fooling himself so well he'd been able to do so with her so she would believe it as well. As much as he'd worked to not become like his parents, he was very much like them. She had even pointed it out and accused him of such. It had been proven as fact when he'd caused her to be afraid of him. For what he'd done these past hours and now.

"What brought this on?"

Head snapping up to look her, he nearly flinched back at seeing what he had wrought. The darker part of him urged him on telling him this was what he could use. It wouldn't take much more for her to break and when she did, she would despise him. From there it would be easy to turn that into hate. Except he couldn't twist the knife. She had been right. He had turned soft. That was something he already well knew. It was something he'd have to address before he went in front of any of the other immortals. He'd allowed her to soften him though forgetting and throwing away everything he'd been taught.

His father's first lesson to him had been if he desired something than to take it. It didn't matter if it belonged to someone else or they refused you. His mother's first lesson to him was how cruel one could be and how one suffered rather than allow others to know their shame. How to nurture your anger and hatred, biding your time until you can release it to inflict damage. 'How proud they would be to see their lessons in play.'

Then she had to ask the question that had him inwardly screaming in equal measure both an affirmation as well as a negative. “Do you want me to stay?”

Ares didn't need to be an oracle to know that his answer would be the catalyst whether it be for good or ill in what followed. How did he explain though that he'd been fracturing for years and was near a shattering point? He wasn't used to talking to anyone about him,not really. He spoke with Aphrodite and Tobias, even the mutt, but it was never about something like this. There had never been a pressing need or desire to do so before.

Sensing that she would be remove herself from more than just the closeness of his body, he instinctive and reflexively pulled her to him, not wanting her to leave. It was akin to when they were in Tartarus and he couldn't let her go. In a way, he supposed it made sense as this situation was his own personal tartarus wasn't it?

"I'm not them." Would she believe him or take her leave of him? She likely would get tired of his struggle to try and find words that would satisfy her. "I don't need you try and 'fix' things because I get angry. I don't want a beautiful brainless automaton!" If he'd wanted one of those, there were plenty to choose from among the mortals and event the lower deities. He wanted her. Letting go of her and bracing for the worst, he acknowledged, "I want what I can't have."
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 27th September 2018, 7:35 pm

There was a storm flashing behind Ares' eyes.  She didn't know how she'd never noticed the intensity of it before - or perhaps she just hadn't looked at the right time.  Regardless, the endless swirl of feeling in his dark eyes explained his sudden mood.  She wouldn't ask what particular thing had triggered it, but it was a balm to know that the anger there wasn't specifically directed at her.  

It was a relief when he wordlessly answered her question, drawing her close and holding her there.  She'd feared he was going to push her away again, and a rush of gratitude welled up when he didn't.  Her arms unwound from around her ribcage as she reached for him, a wordless acknowledgement that she didn't want to go either.  

"You're not," she confirmed, watching him grapple for what to say next.  She'd brought his parents up once on Thrace, noting that he'd been so proud of his rebellion against him.  It had been the straw that broke the camel's back, and she'd regretted it from the moment the words left her tongue.   He'd never treated her anything like the way his father handled the women he seduced, nor was Ares as power-mad.  He was vengeful, yes, but she'd never known him to lash out at the victim of a crime.  There was a justice - a purpose - to what Ares did; he was, ironically, his father's son.  

"I don't need you to try and 'fix' things because I get angry. I don't want a beautiful brainless automaton!"

What was she to do then?  If she made a mistake and he got upset, he had every right to be angry with her.  Her only recourse was to fix it.  Was she supposed to leave things in pieces and hope he decided to stay anyway?   That wasn't how things had ever worked, at least not in her minimal experience with relationships.

She watched, eyebrows drawing together again as his arms fell away and he announced that he wanted what he couldn't have.  Was he talking about her? What in the world made him think he couldn't have her?  She was sitting in his lap, reluctant to leave, and he still thought she belonged to someone else?

It dawned on her slowly that he was talking about Hades.  More specifically, the events that had lead up to Hades' chariot splitting open the meadow she was picking flowers in so that he could carry her off with Zeus' blessing.   Her mother, and by extension she, had turned Ares down. If he thought that she didn't regret that choice now, he was sorely mistaken.  

He could have been talking about anything, or anyone.  He could have been talking about Aphrodite for all she knew.  Suggesting what she wanted to was a very bad idea; if he accepted it and they were found out, there would be hell to pay - literally.  If she was wrong, she'd never be able to face him again, but she wanted to stay with him.  

"Stranger things have happened," she murmured tentatively, letting her fingertips brush his bicep as she watched him for any sign that she'd gotten his words wrong.  The pressure in her chest was nearly unbearable now, pulled taut with anticipation and worry, but she only had to withstand it a little longer - just long enough for him to reply.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 27th September 2018, 8:43 pm

'LIAR!' the voice that had wanted him to hurt her screamed. Hadn't she already thrown the fact he was like his parents at him? Her actions had also spoken for her that she thought he was like them and alike Hades, needing her to admit to fault even if she wasn't the cause? All his doubts and darker emotions latched onto that while he struggled to get it to shut up.

Her touch and next words confused him. Stranger things? Stranger than Persephone deciding to look twice at him? Of envying his uncle? He supposed coming to the realization that everyone in Olympus including himself had been wrong about himself and a certain love goddess would qualify. Knowing he couldn't have Persephone was the whole reason he took what he could. If she hadn't reciprocated his desire, he would have learned to accept just her friendship. It had been different with Aphrodite. There had never been any question of either party desiring the other. Yes, he'd get in jealous rage but both knew that the way she felt towards fidelity was like that of Zeus.

Giving a snort of disbelief, his lip curled with derision. "Stranger than the god of war being in love with the queen of the underworld"

After the words were out of his mouth Ares realized his mistake. He'd meant to say something entirely different that would have at the beginning of their dance had her give an acerbic reply back. Having frozen a fraction too long, he knew that he wouldn't be able to use that as if he was playing along with her theory about strange things. It was also what he'd been concentrating on not letting slip, so naturally it had to come out. Not entirely sure what the response to his words would be, Ares focused on maintaining a calm exterior.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 27th September 2018, 9:27 pm

"Stranger things have happened."

"Stranger than the god of war being in love with the queen of the underworld?"

Everything stopped.  Persephone's heart, her lungs, her ability to form words and coherent thoughts.  Everything hung in stasis because of that one phrase - the one she'd never thought to hear after her marriage to Hades had begun to crumble.  The one sentence that it had seemed like he would never say to anyone but Aphrodite, let alone her.  It didn't sound real, and she had to wonder if he'd dropped her and she'd cracked her head on the bath's edge.  It seemed more like a hallucination than anything.

And yet, she could still feel him.  Her thighs resting on top of his, the warm water that lapped at her ribs.  She'd touched him just a moment ago, and he'd felt firm enough.  If this was a hallucination, it was a very vivid one indeed.

Her brain almost didn't want to process it. Despite the hours that they'd laid together in Ares' bed today, she couldn't quite imagine that he was serious.  How could he love her?  She was a minor deity who spent six months of the year locked away in the underworld, who had delusions of grandeur and didn't know when to keep her mouth shut.   Had he gone mad?  

There was a distinct possibility that he had, or she had for that matter.
But then again, did it matter? She recalled him relating love to madness just before he'd disappeared to Thrace.  Whatever had happened, things all seemed to circle back to whether or not he'd meant what he said.  

Sometimes she had a hard time differentiating when he was sarcastic and when he was serious, so perhaps she was misunderstanding him?  Goodness only knew how many times that had happened before.  The two of them communicated better when there were no words involved; it was hard to misunderstand someone when their embrace said everything you needed to know.  

He was wearing his impassive poker face again, so there was nothing to glean from his expression, but she took heart from the fact that he hadn't unceremoniously shoved her out of his lap and disappeared.  She was sure her expression was comical - eyes wide with surprise and mouth hanging slightly agape - but her focus on his words was all-consuming.  

She didn't even notice the silence until she looked at him and saw how perfectly still he was sitting, waiting for her answer.   The question was a loaded one, and she needed to consider her answer carefully.  The whole point was moot if she couldn't say she loved him too.

You already know the answer. The little voice in Persephone's head piped up, and all of a sudden she had a name for the vice that had been wrapped around her chest all evening.  The one that had squeezed every ounce of air out of her lungs the minute the word 'love' had left his lips.  

She'd intended her response to be brazen, unafraid.  The words 'what's so strange about that?' formed on her tongue, but the only thing she managed to murmur was:

"You love me?"
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 27th September 2018, 10:22 pm

Perhaps not continuing on with a comment such as his father deciding to be celibate would have been strange. Even when he was forced to be because of a prophecy he couldn't keep from straying. Daring to look at Persephone, he found a twinge of agony though he shouldn't have been surprised by her disbelief. There was some amusement too though to see that expression on her face. Like him, he knew that she tried to keep others from seeing what she felt and thought. Over their time together she had become better at it. But as the silence continued, he felt he'd made a horrible mistake and was beginning to regret it. He should never have opened his mouth. Ares wouldn't retreat this time though. He'd allow her to go and deal with the indignity as he'd been taught.

"You love me?"

To his chagrin, he did. There would be no expected back peddling though he desperately wanted to. So far he had been honest with her. There had been pros and cons to that self inflicted rule, but it had bought him this. He would not have traded today away for anything. Still, he hesitated to touch her not quite sure if she even appreciated his all but confessed sentiment towards her. Early on he'd known and been able to not judge her by how he did his ex-lover. Persephone would not try and manipulate him because of those feelings nor cruelly use them against him. Therefor he had no anxiety that she would mock him about that later or with any of the other goddesses. That didn't mean that she wanted him to be in love with her. She could have just wanted the same kind of deal that Aphrodite did.

'Lie.' The urge was there. If he did love her, he should lie. After his father was through with him when they got the titans sorted, it would be better for the both of them. But he was also selfish. So he did the selfish thing. Shutting his eyes he gave a brief nod before opening his eyes not trusting his voice to answer her. His mask cracked as all the confusion and confliction exposed like a raw nerve awaiting her judgement.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 27th September 2018, 10:47 pm

Wasn't love supposed to feel nice? A kind of hazy bliss that had you sleepwalking for days on end? Because what Persephone was feeling at the moment didn't seem like love in the slightest. It hurt, damn it all. She could hardly breathe, and it felt to her like someone had put a knife in her heart. Every time it tried to beat, it burned and stung. Everyone proclaimed over the wonders of love, especially Aphrodite, but all Persephone could think was that this might be harder than heartbreak. At least heartbreak would fade - she doubted she'd ever be able to let go of Ares after this.

That one little nod and the look he gave her when he opened his eyes were painfully raw. He didn't have the words for it either, which was comforting. They were both as lost in this as they had been in Tartarus, but she supposed that they'd get through it together. At least they only had to fight one another some of the time and not that blasted Titan with his club. Any time so much as thought about Ares fighting that thing she could still hear the sound of his ribs making contact with the end of the club.

But that was beside the point. Ares looked miserable, like a man waiting for the executioner, and she couldn't stand it anymore. She loved him regardless, but she wanted to see him smile at least once more tonight if she could manage it.

She leaned in, balancing herself by bracing her hands against his chest. She was half tempted to tease him, to try and make him laugh, but she suspected he'd prefer not be made to jump through hoops at the moment. Instead, she smiled and whispered her answer in his ear.

"Would you believe me if I told you I loved you too?"

He'd probably had enough of her questions to last him a century or two, but she couldn't help herself. All that warmth she'd been feeling earlier came rushing back fast enough to make her giddy, and she wondered if it was too soon to try and kiss him senseless.

Patience, she reminded herself, pulling back to watch his expression. There'll be time enough for that.
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Niemand on 27th September 2018, 11:53 pm

Ares had braced himself for the rejection as it wouldn't have been anything new save for this time he believed it would hurt more than when he'd tried to court her before. When she whispered in his ear, his eyes widened briefly. This wasn't a game that she was playing to toy with his emotions. Hope flared before it was quickly followed by despair. He had thought he'd picked up the same emotions from her that he had when they had been intimate but he could have been projecting. With her question it all but eliminated any doubt that she too sensed the same undercurrents traveling between them.

Yet, he still searched her eyes when she pulled back. Reaching up, he cupped her face, thumb tracing over her lips as it sunk in. The selfish part of him wanted her to say it rather than posing it as a question. To be fair, he hadn't exactly told her straight out either. It still wouldn't travel past his throat, but at least they both knew now where the other stood. Ignoring everything else, he focused on that fact. Sliding his hand to the back of her neck he pulled her in so he could capture her lips with his and communicate his answer that way.

Breaking it, his eyes lit up as what he'd been considering came back to the front of his mind. Giving her a chaste kiss, his expression asked her to trust him. Sliding out from under her, he said, "I have something I have to do. Don't go anywhere."
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Re: Calm Before the Storm

Post by Holly on 29th September 2018, 6:44 pm

In minutes, she'd been content, concerned, and even a little alarmed, but all of her past feelings simply melted in the face of the overwhelming affection she felt as he cradled her face in one hand. It seemed to be taking him a moment to process her question, but she was in no hurry. It wasn't a question she'd ever thought she'd get a chance to ask him, and she doubted he'd expected to hear it. They could afford to spend a little time to let it sink in.

It became abundantly clear that her words had hit home when he slid his hand around the nape of her neck to draw her in and kiss her. She didn't need to read his body language to understand that his answer was a resounding 'yes.' She responded in kind, only to find herself dazed, blinking when he parted his lips from hers. She was about to ask him if something was wrong, but his eyes were bright with excitement.

An expression that fit well with the saying 'like a kid in a candy store' was not one that she'd ever expected to see on the face of a war god, but it seemed today was full of surprises. After one more quick kiss and an order to stay in his rooms, Ares' disengaged himself from her and departed on an unknown errand, leaving her alone in the massive tub.

Will wonders never cease? She thought, an indulgent smile pulling at her lips as she slipped under the surface of the water. The cool liquid surrounded her as she sank to sit on the bottom of the tub, soothing her heated skin as she combed her fingers through her curls. Upon running out of air, she surfaced and wrung out her damp hair before climbing the stairs out of the tub and conjuring herself a clean dress and a towel to dry her hair.

As she padded back through the curtain to his sofa, squeezing water from her curls with the towel, she had to wonder what urgent errand had called Ares away. He'd seemed excited, which ruled out being summoned by another Olympian but left her confused. He hadn't disagreed when she'd argued that they could stay in their little world as long as it pleased them, so what could he possibly have needed to do?

He'll be back soon enough, she soothed herself, perching on the edge of the upholstered cushion and stooping to pick up her glass of Ambrosia. 'Soon enough' still seemed too long, but it would be worth the wait. Sipping the golden liquid, she glanced around the room and realized that she'd hardly had a chance to consider the space properly. Every time she'd been in his room, he'd been there to distract her. She wouldn't go snooping as she had before, but she also wouldn't pass up the chance to get a feel for his rooms.

Interesting she thought, settling more comfortably into the cushions.



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