The Song of Water
There is a world just beyond our own where ancient beings of myth and magic live and breathe. Vera Desailliers, a powerful sorceress, and her lovers, Sam and Evander, must balance their love for each other with their roles as leaders of the Mound of Gaia, the order that has sworn to protect both our world and the Beyond.
A frigid drop of rain slithered down the back of Vera Desailliers’ cashmere sweater. The dampness turned the fabric from soft to itchy and soaked the band of her bra. She muttered a curse and tried angling her umbrella to block the rain, but it subjected the cards and books sticking out of her open satchel to the downpour.
“I’d very much like to know who I’ve offended,” she said, addressing the empty air. Vera hitched her satchel higher on her shoulder and peeked around to see if her outburst had won her any attention. The only other person waiting at the bus stop was huddled to the back of the shelter reading a book and trying to stay dry.
“Le souffle de l’été,” she whispered as she drew a circle in the air with her finger, invoking the breath of summer. The rain drops began to bend around her body. The damp November chill was chased away and a midsummer's warmth flowed over her skin in its place.
Vera checked over her shoulder to make sure that her fellow traveler had not noticed. It was forbidden to use magic in the presence of the uninitiated. She saw the secrecy as a burden, a holdover from when people thought the earth was flat and burned her kind out of fear and hate. Still, Vera was a sorceress and the High Votaress of The Mound of Gaia. She was in charge and had to enforce the laws until she could change them, even the ones she thought were antiquated and silly.
Nothing this miserable is possible without magic, she thought once her teeth stopped chattering.
The day had been a disaster from the start. The water had gone freezing in the middle of her morning shower. Her Familiar, Sam, was supposed to be the handy one in her strange little family and bore the brunt of her ill humor after such a rude awakening. The sky had opened the second she had set one foot outside of her front door. Her car’s radiator had started to hiss and spit like an angry cat when she had turned the key in the ignition and the radiator cap had shot off like a rocket when she had lifted the hood to have a look.
Vera’s hair was plastered to her skull and her mascara had run in streaks down her cheeks by the time she arrived at the rare book shop she owned with Sam, and her Guardian, Evander. She had not been in the door a minute before Evander told her a pipe in the store room had burst. None of their books had been lost, but three inches of standing water on the floor was a monumental problem
It’s got to be the Water Court, she mused in silence. She wracked her brain during the bus ride home, trying to pinpoint where she had given offense to the local Water Daemons. The Daemons were keeper spirits who watched over their elements like over-cautious, paranoid stage parents. Vera needed to figure out what had gotten their noses out of joint. One day of this misery was all she could take.
“Hello, family,” Vera called out.
Shutting the door behind her, the weight of the day began to lighten immediately. She was delighted to be home. The hall smelled of Herbes de Provence and roasting chicken, and beneath that, the house was redolent with the scent of them. Her family. Vera, Sam, and Evander. The Mound of Gaia was a magic order that guarded the Passage between the earthly plane and the Beyond. The initiated entered the Mound of Gaia in triunes - a Votaress, her Familiar, and her Guardian. Vera, Sam, and Evander had been thrown together by fate at fifteen. Initiates were not expected to twine every aspect of their lives together like Vera, Sam, and Evander had, but after twelve years with them at her side, she could not imagine wanting it any other way.
Vera set her bag on the floor and tossed her coat on the rack. She peeked up the front stairs toward their bedroom. The lights on the second story of the modernized Victorian were off. Vera, Sam, and Evander had purchased the house when they had decided to move to Arcadia City. The aptly named Victorian District was close to their store in Market Town, but far enough away that the streets were tree-lined and quiet. The neighborhood was progressive enough that they could come and go without raising any eyebrows. Their property backed up to the Pronoe River, only three miles from where she joined her big sister the Broadwater, and meandered out to the Atlantic.
The house had been built in 1881, but updated in the early 2000s by a couple that wanted Victorian kitsch on the outside and industrial, modern on the inside. The fussy nooks and crannies, popular in 19th-century homes, had been gutted. The first floor was a single room that ran the length of the house, with a panel of reclaimed barn wood separating the kitchen from the rest of the space. The second floor was one lofted bedroom and a bathroom large enough for a walk-in shower, garden tub, and vanity for three.
Vera heard the sounds of clanking pots and running water coming from the kitchen. The mourning rasp of Nina Simone’s voice poured out from behind the partition and filled up the corners of the empty room.
“Le souffle de l'été.” She invoked the breath of summer once again, this time swirling both hands in a slow circle like she was stirring the air. A small whirlwind, infused with comforting warmth gathered in the hall, drying her hair and her clothes.
“That’s cheating,” Evander sang, popping out of the kitchen. He looked like he had been able to shake the stress of the day, but he was a Guardian, the brawn of their small clan, and getting a little wet was the least of his worries. He tossed a dishcloth over his shoulder and bent to brush his lips against Vera’s.
“I don’t care. I’m cold.” She burrowed into his arms.
He clucked his tongue and kissed the top of her head. Evander was tall, his body corded with muscle, and lithe, like the Spartan warriors from whom he was descended. He was barefoot, dressed in a faded t-shirt and a pair of old jeans that rode low on his hips.
“Did your day get any better after I left?” he asked, ducking to nuzzle beneath her ear.
The shadow of beard on Evander’s face brushed against her cheek and made her skin tingle. A sweet pulse of pleasure flared at her center. “No. It was wretched. It’s got to be The Water Court. Thetis is the only Daemon dick-ish enough to fuck up my entire day because she’s in a snit.”
“The Water Court?” Evander took a moment to think. “We’ll all go down to the river after dinner and see what’s gotten her whipped up into a tizzy.” He swept her hair up in one hand and began placing kisses and little nips on her neck.
“Hmmm.” The sound fell from Vera’s lips and she slid her hands into Evander’s back pockets, pulling their bodies flush together. She felt his hardness against her hip and molded herself to him. “Thank you, Evy. I warded the house so we should be catastrophe free until we figure it out.”
Evander pulled his head back and checked his watch. “Since you’ve bought us some time, why don’t you lie down while I finish putting dinner in the oven? It should be ready in about an hour.” He slid his thumb across her lips and she relished the feel of the callus against her delicate skin. “Maybe give Sam some love? He feels awful about this morning.” He stole one kiss, brief and chaste, then stepped away.
Vera wanted to feel his lips on hers again, but the idea of stripping out of her clothes and falling into bed sounded amazing. “Poor pup.” She kissed Evander one more time before heading up the stairs to their bedroom.
The cool orange of the streetlights filtered through the wall of windows facing the street. The centerpiece of the room was a platform bed. It was low and mid-century in style, easily the width of two king-size mattresses, and long enough that even Evander, who was almost two meters tall, did not have to worry about his feet hanging off the edge.
The bed was occupied by a massive Irish wolfhound, with a coat of coarse silver fur streaked with ebony. Vera lay down beside him and scratched behind one of his ears. The hound regarded her with amber eyes, then heaved a great sigh, and let his head fall onto his front paws.
“Don’t tell me you’re still pouting because I yelled at you?” Vera said and stroked the animal’s flank once, before sliding back to lay against the pillows.
The room was filled with the hiss and spit of ungrounded electricity and Vera was overcome by the scent of peat smoke and caramel. The air around the wolfhound’s body shimmered and the boundaries of skin and fur began to blur. A percussive vibration buffeted the air, building in intensity until it reached the peak of its crescendo, cracking like the snapping of bone, then all was silent.
A man reclined in the spot where the wolfhound had been. He was naked; his skin was unmarked and shined in the low light like polished bronze. As he rolled onto his front and propped himself on his elbows, his full lips stretched into a broad, unguarded smile. Vera tucked a lock of thick, ebony hair behind his ear.
“A little dramatic, don’t you think, Sam?”
Sam leaned his head into Vera’s palm. “No more dramatic than throwing a full-blown strop over a little cold water.” His voice was gruff but sweet, with a hint of brogue that hardened his r’s and made his vowels round and soft.
“I am sorry about that.”
“I suppose I can let it go, this once. Evy said you had a shite day.” He pushed himself up onto his hands and knees and crawled the length of Vera’s body until they were face to face. She tilted her head up and took his mouth, licking at the seam of his lips until he opened to her, sliding their tongues together.
Vera arched into Sam’s body, loving the feeling of his bare arousal. He lifted a hand from the bed and started to run his fingers through her hair, over her face, and across her throat. Sam teased her with the promise of a firmer touch and pulled away when she started to push into his palm. His deep chuckle ignited a fire in her body.
“Don’t be so impatient,” he said, kissing down the pale length of her neck to where her shirt opened. He pulled at the fabric and licked along the swell of her breasts.
“Did I mention my day was horrible?” She unbuttoned her shirt and Sam nipped at her skin, following the plunge of the lingerie to the clasp between her breasts.
Unlatching the clasp, he exposed Vera to his mouth. He suckled one dusted-rose nipple, flicking it with his tongue and then biting down, with just enough pressure to cause a bolt of pleasure to flood her center and make her gasp. His other hand toyed with the other nipple while he lavished attention on the one between his lips, sucking at the hardened bud and then blowing gently on her skin. He alternated between her breasts, drinking in her pleasure until she was writhing beneath him.
Vera’s body was burning and her hands scrambled between them, tugging at the button of her jeans and passing over the heated velvet of Sam’s length. She slid her thumb across the uncut head of his cock, collected the shining drop at the tip, and slipped it into her mouth, keeping her eyes on his while she sucked her thumb clean.
Sam glided down her body, peppering her with kisses. He slid her pants off, stopping to lave her inner thighs with nips and kitten-licks. She looked down the length of her torso, watching Sam ghost his lips over the lace of her panties, running his tongue along the seam until he placed his mouth over her center and let loose a gust of breath.
“Please,” she panted and Sam slipped her panties down her thighs, removing the last barrier between them. He paused, his eyes full of warmth. One of Vera’s hands caressed her breasts while the other reached down to her womanhood. She reveled in the slick sensation, caressing herself, taking the time to dip one finger inside before spreading her legs wide.
“Look at you, my sweet Vera,” Sam said, his hands snaked up the outside of her thighs, before he slipped his arms under her legs, and draped her knees over his shoulders. “You’re beautiful.”
Sam’s eyes locked on hers and he lowered his mouth, caressing her clit with the tip of his tongue, before leaning in to kiss and lick at her center.
Vera threaded her fingers through Sam’s hair and scratched at his scalp. “That’s so good.” A delectable shiver followed each quick pass of his tongue. “Kiss me slowly, love.”
Sam slowed his motions, making love to her with his mouth. Vera luxuriated in the pleasure of Sam’s attentions and the sharp sting of the little bites he made on her thighs. Sam and Vera were so lost to sensation, they failed to hear Evander’s tread on the stairs.
A sigh captured Vera’s attention and she opened her eyes. Evander watched as Sam worshipped Vera’s body, and the palm of his hand pressed against the hard line of his cock. He slipped out of his clothes, his own length standing against the firm muscles of his abdomen, the head ruddy and shining. Vera held out her hand and Evander took it, leaning in for a passionate kiss.
Evander pulled away, letting a low, growling laugh go when Vera whimpered. Sam continued to lick and suckle her while Evander let his hand glide over Sam’s back to massage the globes of his ass.
“Sam, give Evy a taste,” Vera said, letting her fingers take over for Sam’s tongue and tease her clit. Sam lifted his head, his eyes shining, and bit at Evander’s lips. Both men groaned and Evander’s hand flew to the back of Sam’s head, holding him steady while he devoured his mouth. They broke apart to breathe, panting together.
“You taste amazing.” Evander’s voice rumbled in his chest. “Is this serious fun or play fun?” he asked. All three shared a smile.
It had taken time to create a language that worked for their strange, loving family. They were all magical beings; they knew the power of words. They used language to draw the line between the times when they made love and when they played together. Serious fun was when they stripped themselves bare of everything other than the overwhelming depth of feeling they had for each other. Play fun was for pushing their boundaries.
“I don’t know about you two, but I could use some play fun,” Vera said, leaving it for Sam and Evander to decide.
“Play fun,” they replied together.
“Color?” Evander asked.
The colors were part of their ritual. Green for yes, yellow for slow, and red for stop. It gave them a way to make sure they shared an equal voice in their pleasure.
“Green,” Vera said.
“Green,” Sam echoed.
Evander nodded. Vera saw him turn inward for a moment before he fixed his eyes on her and directed Sam to do the same with the hand that still grasped his hair.
Vera lifted her hips and buried two fingers deep in her body, swirling them around, and delighted in the obscene whine that escaped Sam’s lips when she took them in her mouth to lick them clean. Evander molded himself to Sam’s back and pressed his mouth against his ear.
“Do you know what I love, puppy?” Sam moaned again when Evander’s other hand snaked around his hip and began pumping Sam’s cock. “I love to watch you worshipping her cunt.” Vera stretched her legs out and spread herself wide for Sam. “She’s Gaia incarnate. Will you honor her, make her come for us?”
Sam nodded. His voice failed him as his focus reeled between the sensation of Evander’s hand massaging his length and the sight of Vera throwing her head back in pleasure as she stroked her clit.
Evander’s hand tightened in Sam’s hair. “Speak, puppy.”
“Yes, of course.” Sam sounded like the words had been punched out of him.
“Good.” The hand that Evander had tangled in Sam’s hair slid down his back, tracing the crease of his ass. He stopped to draw a light circle around the furled rose of muscle and pulsed his thumb on the tender skin behind Sam’s balls. “He’s such sweet puppy for us, isn’t he?”
Vera reached down and stroked Sam’s hair. “You’re our good boy,” she said, loving the blush that crept into his cheeks at the praise.
Sam resumed his worship of Vera’s pussy with long, flat swipes of his tongue. She was fascinated by the single-minded devotion he showed her. Evander let go of Sam’s cock and pulled a small bottle of slick from a bedside drawer. Sam moaned high in his throat at the loss.
“Hush, puppy,” Evander soothed. “Do you want to come with his tongue and his fingers or his cock, love?” he asked Vera.
“His tongue, his hands,” she panted, her voice more breath than sound.
“And how would you have our little pup receive his pleasure?” Evander asked.
Heat was unfurling in Vera’s core and she felt a quickening in her veins. “Give him your cock. Oh, Gaia!” she cried. “I want to watch him come apart with you inside him.”
Evander nodded, running his hand down the length of Sam’s back. “Slow, now. Show our Goddess what that gorgeous tongue of yours can do, but don’t let her come. Not yet.”
Vera’s hands skated over her body, stopping to tug at her nipples or caress Sam’s face as he pleasured her. Evander grabbed a pillow from the head of the bed and lifted Sam’s hips. He slicked his fingers and began to open him, relaxing the tight muscle by sliding in first one, then two fingers, alternating fucking him and scissoring his fingers to widen Sam’s body enough to accept his cock. Sam keened when Evander plunged three fingers inside him and crooked them to pulse against the small bundle of nerves inside of his body. Shocks of pleasure radiated outward from Sam’s center and he lifted his hips enough to begin stroking himself.
Evander laughed and pulled Sam’s hand away. “Don’t worry, puppy, you’ll find your release.”
Sam groaned, the vibration of sound resonating against Vera’s body while he caressed the silken walls of her cunt with his fingers. She pushed down, grinding onto his hand and then up into his questing tongue. Vera began to unravel, chasing after her ecstasy. Evander lined his cock up and slid into Sam’s body in one long push, stopping when he felt his hips flush against Sam’s ass. He gave his lover time to adjust before he started making small circles with his hips. Sam’s body flamed with fierce heat and his ass gripped Evander tight enough to pull a broken gasp from the Guardian’s lips.
“Oh fuck, you feel amazing,” Sam said between licks, his mouth open and panting against Vera’s center.
Evander pulled out until the tip of his cock caught on Sam’s rim and then plunged back inside. He gave Sam no quarter, holding his hips still so that he could pummel his prostate with each stroke.
Vera watched Evander fucking into Sam. They were stunning together; Sam’s gaze was fixed on Vera’s face, his pupil’s blown wide enough that his eyes looked black in the low light. Evander’s body undulated, rocking in and out of Sam, the muscles of his shoulders and chest straining beneath his skin.
“Gaia, please!” Vera cried when Sam curled three fingers inside her and sucked on her clit, his cheeks hollow with the pressure. Her body was alight with sensation, the intensity so pronounced she felt tears prick at the corners of her eyes. “Please Evy.”
Evander let go of Sam’s hip and leaned in, stroking his cock while he whispered in Sam’s ear. “She’s so close. Is her cunt closing around your hand, holding you inside?” He stopped to lick at a bead of sweat that had rolled down Sam’s neck. “Can you feel her clit twitching against your tongue? You’re gorgeous, puppy. Make her come!” he cried and drove his cock home while Sam panted and licked at Vera’s pussy.
She was frenzied, every muscle trembling with pleasure as she slammed into her orgasm. Sam’s fingers continued to stroke her as her body convulsed. His mouth open against her thigh, a rhythmic huff heating her skin, he was lost to the desire that was chasing through his blood.
Evander grasped Sam’s hair, pulling his head back. “Look at her. Look at what you’ve done, puppy,” he said and then leaned back for a handful of powerful thrusts, making sure to strike Sam’s prostate each time. Sam howled, coming untouched. He shuddered, his ass milking Evander’s cock and drawing the Guardian’s climax from him with such force that Evander’s vision grayed as he shook through his completion.
They were all gasping for air. Sam collapsed, his head pillowed on Vera’s thigh, while Evander gently pulled out of Sam’s body and slid up beside them both. The three lovers watched the shadows on the ceiling dance as wind shook the trees outside. The only sounds in the room were those of rustling bedclothes as legs and arms intertwined and the occasional swish of a car passing over the wet asphalt outside.
“Dinner smells amazing, when do we get to eat?” Vera asked, propping herself up on her elbows.
“It’ll be ready by the time we get out of the shower,” Evander said. His whole body bowed into half-moon stretch, and he let loose a jaw-cracking yawn.
Sam traced spirals on Vera’s stomach with a finger. “I’m too comfortable to move,” he said, shifting so he could snuggle up behind Vera and wrap an arm around her waist.
“Too bad, you’re going to have to,” Vera said, and reached back to plant a light slap on Sam’s hip.