Show of Devotion

Disclaimer: Adult themes.


Xanadu Weyr - The Silvergrove (Ru'ien and Kihatsuth's Homestead)
Nestled in a large clearing is an unusual sight and marvel of Craftsmanship. Modest by size alone, what makes the weyr stand out among so many others is simple: it is raised UP among the largest and sturdiest of the trees. Heavy support beams have been expertly inserted to keep the structure in place. A pathway of smooth flagstone leads to the walkway that, after a slight turn, leads directly to the front porch and doorway. The weyr itself is largely one story, with a small second floor ‘loft’ and plenty of windows. A third porch area is in the back, accessed only by passing through inside. The grounds behind the weyr hold a small but functioning personal forge and further behind that, a large shed. The wallow for the residing green is below the structure itself, with hidden components that are adjustable to lend some shielding from the elements when needed.

Inside, the rooms are cozy and rustic in design. The front door leads to a small l-shaped ‘foyer’ created by the loft above, but otherwise opens directly into the main living area. On the one side, a kitchenette rests beneath part of the loft and partially hidden by the slightly curved stairs leading up. Predictably leading to the bedroom, along with a more private sitting area above the kitchenette itself. The main living area itself is complete with a wood stove and carefully arranged furniture. In one corner, a workbench and appropriate custom built shelving rests, neatly kept and organized. Beyond that, recessed into the back, is the full bathroom to one side. The back ‘wall’ is made up of more windows and two doors set in the centre that lead to the back porch, creating more ‘open’ space. In the final ‘corner’, is what appears to be a metal pole — only slightly out of place. Extra support or something more … exotic?

"RRRRRRRROCK!" The only redeeming feature to this banshee shriek with rolling 'R' and raucous timbre that barely precedes the abuse pounding on the greenrider's door after dinner one fine summer evening is that it gave Ru'ien about three seconds longer to get to the door to spare the poor thing those few moments of being challenged by Tej's boot. It would be nice to say that this was all done under the influence of booze, but the bottle in the redhead's grip is still sealed tight and there is no trace of inebriation in the snap-stringed escaped marionette pose she assumes against his door frame the moment it's opened.

"Miss me?" There's a saucy twist to the words, and then he had best be prepared to receive an armful of Harper because she's literally pushing off the frame one moment and onto him in the next - arms going around his neck, legs wrapping his waist as if she were greeting a lover after a long separation~ It's got to look good in case anyone is inclined to spread rumors. (You know, here where it's exceptionally unlikely anyone is watching.) Once the door is close behind them, though, she's bursting into laughter and giving Ru'ien a real hug as her legs dangle to find the floor.

It would have put a dampener on the reunion if he’d open that door only to get a kick in the shins! Ru'ien fears not the banshee shriek and mercifully his neighbours are far enough away (OR ARE THEY?) not to hear. He, however, rushes to the door from where he’d been, without an ounce of fear or concern of what awaits him! Even if she had shown up on his doorstep under the influence of booze, he wouldn’t have held it against her. He delights in her assumed pose against his door frame and the saucy twist to her words, a broad, roguish grin curving his lips. All while he adopts a similar pose and posture of his own, weight heavily placed on one hip.

Ru’ien’s bright laughter ought to be enough of an answer and the way his arms are already spread wide to receive that armful of very dearly missed Harper! There’s a staged grunt for the impact (she can smack him later for it), more laughter as he adjusts his weight to balance them through a little twirl in through the door. LISTEN, if they’re putting on a show (shh, there can always be someone watching and not necessarily HUMAN), he’s there for it! His laughter mingles with hers, followed by nonsensical but truly happy sounds as the hug turns real and he tucks his head in close to hers. Was Tejra wanting to be fiercely hugged? Because it’s happening!

He doesn’t ease up either, for a long drawn out moment. Ru’ien holds them there, wrapped up together, even going as far as to take a few slightly swaying steps to gently rock — and then, he lets go. Just enough to step back and beam at her. “Have I ever missed you~” he muses, gaze sweeping appraisingly over her. How long has it been? Ru’ien behaves as though no time at all has stretched between them, taking another half step back in order to make a swipe for the bottle. “And you brought a present! How kind!” he teases, grin now impish and playful. “My company will have to be my gift to you. So,” Whether he’s successful or not at whisking the bottle away, one hand will gesture in animated fashion. “Make yourself comfortable!” Downstairs, upstairs! Ru’ien has no preference and Tejra is not barred from the ‘loft’ and all that is there.

Wanting it? Mayhaps not, but enduring it with more good grace than she would were she actually the feline her finicky temperament occasionally brings to mind. She also might just need it. The bottle he can have. But her declaration of, "Two!" only slightly less loud and full of faux bluster even now that the door is closed, assures that he only got the booze because it's the lesser of the two. "Just to show my devotion." She flips him a pretty sharp smile that promises markers have been drawn up with his name to be leveraged later when she wants something.

Even Tej's reach to the string securing the lightweight bag cinched closed at its top from over her shoulder is something of a performance; this part, however, is more part of her cultivated grace in movement honed by grueling daily practices that must be back in full force now that she's set foot on Xanadu soil. She dangles the bag by its string before her, a pretty silk thing that must have been some weaver's scrap put to new purpose, long but curiously slender. She waggles it temptingly, but will pull it away (not technically out of his longer reach because though she's tall for a woman, she's not that tall). "We need your mirrors," she stipulates with no trace of apology, shame or self-consciousness, breezing now past Ru'ien. "Bring the glasses," she bids him in haughty tones that are all play before mincing her way up to their final destination.

If he's too slow, she'll already be trying on some of his things when he gets there; if he's quick, he can catch her while she's still pawing through his closet for a first selection, not that she hasn't come dressed with the only logical, eventual destination of dance in mind, but it's more fun to go through his things. The package lays surrendered unguarded on his bed. If eager hands lay claim before she's out, he will find something red and black and wholly a wearable dream… in his size.

“Two!” Ru’ien exclaims in an echo that isn’t statement or question, but chased by another rolling chuckle and impish smirk. “You spoil me, Tej~” he muses, with the bottle now safely in hand and part of his gestures. “Consider your devotion noted.” His voice dips to lower, smokier tones, all play in tone and his returned smile. Is he even remotely aware of the chance of being leveraged later? Arguable (so probably not).

MERCIFULLY, Ru’ien is not proddy or that silk bag would’ve been the REAL GIFT; like the child more entranced in the wrapping paper and bows. His gaze lingers on it with sharpened focus, when it’s dangled in front of him. Tejra’s tempting bait works and he’ll attempt to snatch it away and fail, only because one hand isn’t quite enough. She’ll win that round! Her breezing by goes uncontested too, with him giving her a flippant smirk and look at her back. Cue the (false) attitude! Such nerve, commanding him! And in his own weyr! “Yes, of course…” he replies before she’s out of earshot, selecting a tone that tips towards playing servant to her haughtiness. Yes, mistress! really, she can throw something down at him now

Tejra is welcomed to his closet and the contents therein! She has earned that, in whichever fashion, at some point of their developing relationship. Ru’ien is many things and one of the variations is enjoying sharing his collection with the right trusted audience people. There’s been plenty of time to peruse by the time he’s climbing the stairs up into the loft, glasses in hand, and an uncorked bottle in the other. “You feeling a certain vibe tonight? Got the newest stuff more to the left,” Ru’ien offers, while appraising what she may already be trying on or has discarded while he arranges their glasses on the three mirrored antique vanity. All it takes is one quick look to his bed to spy the unguarded package and he’s set upon it! She’ll have to get her glass herself. how rude

Eager hands do lay claim and Ru’ien makes short work of revealing the second gift — which renders him speechless beyond the initial gasp of DELIGHT! “Tej!” he’s going to be indebted to her foreverrr “You really DO spoil me! I can’t even…” What’re words? Ru’ien doesn’t have them, but he’s certainly making a lot of noise, while holding it up against his body. “Oh and it even matches so much of my stuff!” He turns then, with no lack of grace to his movements despite his height, sauntering up to her with every intent to threaten initiate another hug — or maybe just giddily join her in diving into his own closet.

"Mnneh," is a noncommittal noise that just means Tej is unwilling to commit to feeling a particular vibe until she's worked her way through the newest items allow her whimsy full range, moving toward those things now that they've been identified, more or less. If her attention wavers away from the task at hand and to the lunging eager greenrider opening that gift, she will be forgiven once it's opened.

By the time he's looking up from it, though, she's back to looking, pretending boredom despite the marked satisfaction in her voice as it drifts to him. "I told you it would pay off to let me paw through your closet." A beat later she's turning her head to flash a smug smile his way. But he's right there, and either she's off her game or simply has her guard down in this place because he got close enough to her that she seems to feel the need to squawk in surprise. She endures that hug, but with less grace than the last, a muffled, "Ugh, you're enormous," coming from where her face is pressed into his chest. If Ru'ien has ever seen Tej exchange physical affections though, he'll doubtless have noted that these sorts of protests seem to be reserved just for him. Who can say why? But it's surely obvious that none of these are real objections, just the particular way of being she's adopted when in his company.

Her, "Help me choose something so long as you're here, unless you're going to try that on right away," is entirely distraction that will work for her either way because it's really all this closeness and touching that might just fracture the mask and result in an escape of tears or something equally embarrassing, since she's not nearly so solid as she's pretending. If nothing else, the new corset is a safe bet for distraction, right? Especially since she adds, "I met a weaver while I was standing this last time and got him interested in some pet projects. You're supposed to let him know how you like it."

And then, just when she's turned back to the clothes to search for herself, just when Ru might be starting to try the thing on, she adds the catch as if it isn't one: "You owe him a date." LISTEN, IT'S FINE, CLEARLY NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT. Tej, with her, MYSTERIOUS LOVE LIFE or non-existent one, Ru can choose what he believes~, OBVIOUSLY HAS GREAT TASTE IN MEN. He might worry if he actually knew. He might worry anyway.

All and much more will be forgiven once that gift is open! Ru’ien is satisfied with her squawk of surprise to his abruptness (and maybe a little too smug) in proximity. Neither does he seem to care if she endures the hug versus enjoying it — not that his hug is any less genuine even if primarily for the teasing theatrics. She will feel his husky laughter to her ‘complaint’ and the quiet rumble of his voice as he purrs in the same breath: “That’s what they all say~” Cue a roguish grin and plenty implied in the pitch of his tone. If he’s caught on while witnessing her before and made that connection, he must be fine with it within this dynamic they’ve created between each other — so long as there are no real objections!

“Why not try this?” Ru’ien selects a particular favorite out of his ‘newest’ collection, holding it up briefly before lightly tossing it her way. How could she tell that he was definitely going to try on his new preciousss corset? Sidestepping around her and giving her some space now, if he has any inkling of those masks (and he might), he doesn’t press her. He won’t hint either, because he knows all about keeping those masks. Tejra always has the full choice to confide in him or not. He won’t hold it against her, as they all have their secrets and he can respect that.

The new corset is working as good distraction fodder! Her turn in conversation is second right behind it. “Oh! Did you, now?” he muses while adopting the usual playful ‘Do Tell’ sing-song tones. He laughs, tossing another article of clothing at her in an unspoken ‘TRY THIS TOO’ gesture for emphasis while smirking. Is it a catch? If it is, Ru’ien’s not finding it too disagreeable. No surprise there, right? “Do I get to at least know his name? Or is that part of the deal?” he adds in a joking quip as he turns his back to her. Slipping out of his current top, he’ll start to rummage for something better suited to wear with the corset. Surely she won’t mind him undressing? It’s not like it hasn’t happened in some capacity before, he of-so-little modesty! He will reserve judgment on her TASTE IN MEN later, whenever (because IF was never in the works here, was it?) he tracks down this Weaver in Ista. and of course he’d worry if he knew, he just might not show it in obvious ways

(Enjoy your smug while you can, greenrider. This is Tej; payback will arrive when you least expect it - or when you most expect it. She is, after all, only unpredictable often enough to make a predictable move just as unexpected.) Her mouth opens and grey eyes narrow before a sharp movement draws one hand up, a single finger of doom held between them as she gets just enough breathing room to do so. "Keruthien Greenrider, did you just make a 'that's what he said' joke?" It's probably just because Tej is a Harper and everyone knows Harpers are natural-born performers and all that, and not because Tej can be totally terrifying when she's a whim to be that she's able to lace her hiss with such menace. He may want to think about that answer carefully because he's absolutely verbally signing a liability waiver for whatever consequences she chooses to inflict based on his response.

Before he can answer though, she's throwing up a second hand in a display of false disgust. "This is what I get for letting my name be paired up—" in gossip anyway, "—with an expert in sword handling." Then, naturally, she shoves him, and not without a strength that her frame does not especially prepare a person for - except, of course, Rock knows how many hours a day Tejra spends in various forms of physically demanding movement in order to build the muscle necessary to move with such controlled grace that looks effortless to the untrained eye. He's just lucky he's giving her peace offerings.

She accepts the first by snatching it from the air and drawing the vest around her shoulders, much slenderer than his, but, "Mm, needs a sash," because Tej, who is always mindful of her marks (as anyone who goes out with her as Ru'ien does would know, given that she's never without a drink or food or whatever she needs but she never pays for them; RIP marks that don't realize they're being used~), knows how to put together an ensemble from whatever's to hand and make it look exotic or not in the least, depending on the order of the day. Tonight, it's exotic.

Thus when the second item is lofted, she's quick to twirl and draw it around herself in the same movement to get it situated the way she wants it. She doesn't dignify his Do Tell with anything more than a snort. Did he really think that would work? While details do come for free, sometimes, or simply cost in entertaining banter, of which this is not, apparently, if he wants it, he'll have to work for it this time. The tell. She will gift him: "Gh'daren," for free. Of course, she'd need to, or how else would he find the man that's owed? As ever there's less than no care for his undressing, and in fact, she's turning to go lend a hand with the back laces to help get things sized right when he gets to that stage.

(You know he’s going to enjoy his smug, Tej and enjoy waiting on that payback too! Will that be said for the results? WHO KNOWS.) Ru’ien’s mouth curves into a grin that widens with each change to her features and to the finger of doom held between them. While he doesn’t outrightly laugh, he’s laughing on the inside. Riotously! “And what if I did?” he muses, without shame or concern in the wake of her hissing tone. Any further interjecting answer is thwarted by the sudden hand thrown up by her and a scoff from him, as he smirks. “You know you secretly love it, Tej~” he teases further, as his voice wavers with the first tremors of laughter when he can no longer hold it back.

Laughter that is short lived, that is! Ru’ien’s breath rushes in a (partially) feigned grunt as she shoves him. He knows well enough how much time she spends at those physically demanding movements (how often has he been a partner to some of those times?); it won’t stop him from playing it up a little, so there’s some feigned staggering and just a pinch of flourish to his reaction as he focuses on his distraction newly acquired gift. If it’s exotic that Tej is aiming for, Ru’ien is certainly behind that vibe! let’s not think about HIS marks and the spending of them

Did he really think it would work? Of course not! Won’t stop him from trying, though! Could Tejra really fault him for it? If she wants him to work for it, Ru’ien is behind that too and is far from letting her off the proverbial hook. For now, he’s content with the freebie given in the form of a name. One that he repeats back for the sole reason to roll it over his tongue, in obvious sampling to sound and no visual in which to place it. will the real man live up to his imagination? “Gh’daren.” There’s a thoughtful, amused sound made low in his throat, before he lightly purrs. “And he’s Istan, you said?” Is this an obvious trap? Sensing her approach, Ru’ien will leave fussing over the corset’s placement and let her take over the lacings. His contribution in ‘helping’ at that point will be to hold still and to move his hair forwards over his shoulders.

Ru'ien may never learn that everything has a cost, but it won't stop him from paying it when the moment is ripe. She flicks a brief glare that's all fire-not-currently-trying-to-burn-anything as she intones an answer of, "I sense trouble in paradise," low and in further threat. WILL THEIR LITERALLY FABLED ROMANCE BE DASHED ON THE ROCKS hffhfhfhf?? If so, with the way things are going it sounds like it will shred his reputation, SUCH AS IT IS. It's not accurate to say Tej would not do it, but it is accurate to say she would not do it over playful banter, which they've long since established these routine dramatics to be between them. LAUGH IT UP, FUNNY MAN.

"Why would I want a man with so saucy a sense of humor?" Tej demands of the rhetorical after making a disbelieving noise through her nose at Ru'ien's insistence that she loves it. She does. Not enough under her breath that she does not absolutely intend it to be heard is the complaint, "Stealing all my lines." And if her eyes twinkle just a bit brighter and her lips twist into a mysterious sort of smile, only she knows why. One smug man to consider is more than enough in any scene; stop preening.

He's a busy man, but though there are times Tej does wish to train alone, she does not often turn him away when he can find her because if she does not want company, she frequently can simply not be found. All this familiarity together though does assure enough time spent in one another's company to be perfectly comfortable with the act of lacing and so on. She'll need to fuss a little, too, but just because it does need to sit right. It would be an insult to the wearer and maker if she did any less. "Not originally Istan. From WeaverCraft." Of course~ "But Istan long enough." She will throw him one more bone. "He's very… colorful." Coming from Tej, this can mean so many things, but obviously she will not offer to elaborate; her tone, however, implies some variety that she very much enjoyed. In other words: sounds dangerous. Ru'ien's hardly a virginal sacrifice, but beggars can't be choosers.

Ru’ien’s reaction to that low and further threat is only to laugh, low and throatily. IT WOULD SEEM SO how tragic! Does he have a reputation (probably)? If he’s aware of it, he doesn’t seem to chalk up much importance to it — unless they’re getting it horribly wrong, that is!

“Because it keeps you on your toes? Challenges your own — sense of humor?” What was he going to originally say there? Ru’ien’s smirk suggests it was probably nothing good. “Want me to keep going?” he teases instead. His grin returns and broadens for that overheard complaint, followed up by a smugness that is his own and the wink paired with it. There may even be a slight poke of the tip of his tongue from his lips. He’s ‘sorry, not sorry’ for stealing lines, Tej~ he’s preening

He will at least let her fuss over him the placement (surprised? didn’t think so) of the corset. “Sounds like you know him decently well, Tej,” he muses, while indulging in ONE temptation and letting his fingers trace and admire the corset (without upsetting the placement… at least more than once) while it’s laced. “Mhm.” he chuckles low, only to sigh wistfully while he still can take a breath deep enough. “I do enjoy colorful!” It can mean so many things to her and it means plenty to him, but he does not appear to be thrown off by it; if anything, he’s all the more intrigued and her tone certainly helps that along! “Anything else I should know?” Vague again on purpose, with a dual edge purpose to the innocuous question. and he would play the part of virginal sacrifice if that's what he had to do

"Why would I want that?" The words are a balk, but Tej lets the laughter that isn't anything more than nuance be heard in her voice, perhaps just so they're clear it's all in good fun, even if she'll make her grumbliest face at him. The look is replaced by a mask of innocence that if it weren't so flawlessly dawned and such a change from the look immediately preceding it would be hard-pressed to be proven false on looks alone. "Why, no, darling, why would there be?" Beware, Ru.~ Especially given that the next is so obvious a topic change, intentionally conspicuous, "So where shall we go tonight? And do we drink now, then, or later?" Options, options~

Ru’ien is definitely taking it all in good fun! Grumbliest faces included, to which he really does stick out his tongue at this time and pulls a face of his own. Beware? He squints at her, mostly in a playful air to match the purse of his lips and overall disbelieving look — that vanishes in the next beat and breath, as he clasps his hands together audibly. Well, enough of that! “How do I look?” Ru’ien will step back enough once Tejra is done with lacing to execute a slow spin, which then evolves to him trying a few other movements. It’s likely a whole new feel to be wearing that corset and thankfully, ONCE AGAIN, he’s not proddy at the moment or they’d never get anywhere. Obvious topic changes? Ru’ien would have no idea about such tactics! None. “Oh, I was thinking it’d be ladies choice to night~ I picked the last time, didn’t I?” Listen, some of that night might be a blur. scandalous! There’s a laugh as he languidly saunters over to collect their neglected glasses from before, one of which is passed to her and the other raised to lightly tap the side. “Drinks now, my dear~” Always! Ru’ien gestures next to the triple mirrored vanity, eagerness in his eyes and in the grin he now sports. “You said exotic/ tonight, right? I feel like that calls for a little more~” Hair and makeup is what he’s implying, but he’ll concede and do the minimum if Tejra is feeling a need to hurry on out the door and on with their night.

Asking Tej an open opinion question like that can garner a variety of responses depending on the day, the hour, the minute, her mood and whimsy or any other twist of circumstance; the possibilities are nearly endless. Thus, her contemplative tilt to her head, her braid falling over her shoulder to dangle in the air, could be foreboding. What comes, though, is an innocuous, "I think you know," with a flash of a smile that speaks more of her positive opinion. "I've done very well," she tells him, very much tongue in cheek as she reaches for the glass he offers. She'll even toast him— or herself, one or both of them anyway.

It's only after a sip with a thoughtful near mewing noise that the woman stretches with as much boneless arch as the feline she briefly mimicked in auditory expression and lets the curl of her body as she comes out of the stretch lead into a very graceful rise from the bed as if she were drawn up by invisible strings and not muscle at all. "When my man wants more, more is what he gets," she declares, tone sliding right back into teasing affection even as she's moving to the vanity to get started pawing through the familiar (and possibly also new additions) to the make-up and hair supplies there, all the better to make their night to come as exotically distracting as possible.

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