Henric and Alex XXIII (v1.3)

Aug 1st, 2014
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  1. Tags: Catharsis, female masturbation
  3. Henric expected to find Yuya when he rounded the corner away from the fight into the little walled courtyard around the bell tower, and was surprised to see Kerran instead, though it took him a moment to recognize his former friend and mentor.
  5. Kerran was slender, skeletal, ethereal. He was teeth and talons and whiplike tail. But Henric knew him when he saw him, and at the sight he deflated and lowered his sword, figuring that if Kerran was here he’d either die or live, and in neither scenario would it be within his power.
  7. Undead that looked as alive as Henric continued to fight on the other side of a relatively thin stone wall with an open gate, and their screams were deafening. Henric shrugged to Kerran. A surrender, an apology. He dismounted Ian, still holding his beast’s reins. Ian stomped the ground, but always obeyed Henric and did not flee.
  9. The necromancer laughed triumphantly, but managed to do so without mocking Henric. “Did you miss me?”
  11. “I did,” Henric admitted. As much as he missed anyone. Kerran was a point of reference in his life and one fight wouldn’t have changed that permanently.
  13. “And how is the twinless twin?” Kerran asked, as if he did not know and as if he wasn’t using some chunk of his psyche to command his nearby army.
  15. “Still a pain,” the knight sighed wistfully. His voice didn’t sound half as angry as his words, and he lazily put his weight on just one foot.
  17. “Do you prefer her any other way?”
  19. “I guess not.” The two shared a dark chuckle.
  21. Yuya watched them from a dark place in the gateway, in the hole between two walls of stone where the sliding wooden door would enter when it was all the way closed. Because it was open, she had no fear of being crushed. Because it was in the shadows, she had no fear of being seen, not even by Kerran’s inhuman yellow eyes.
  23. She hadn’t seen him like this. Always Yuya had imagined him in the body he’d been in when he had faked his death and killed her only real friend. She had imagined since then that he would be human-looking when she fought him, someone that she could best with knives and swords just like any other man, but a demon was a different thing.
  25. Henric and Kerran drew closer to one another. Kerran on all fours like a curious wild animal gradually drawing in to see if the man was carrying food or if he was food himself, Henric a prodigal son. There was tension in the air until they were in arms’ reach of one another, and then Yuya saw the calm. Old friends relaxing.
  27. She pounced.
  30. The ground was the worst battlefield that any of the Fierskeep soldiers had ever seen. Sir Cyrus recalled worse when he had once had to fight a few men on a muddy beach, but that had been miniscule compared to this.
  32. There were tunnels under the earth that the undead had revealed, and they were open wounds for men to fall in. More ground was unstable and loose, and given the wet nature of the terrain this meant a certain amount of mud and scree. Every man felt like he carried his own weight in muck in seconds, and even Tohru’s whirling slowed. The dead carried mud and roots and sometimes little beetles on their skin, but they didn’t have to worry about tiring.
  34. As another arrow went sailing through the air and into the skull of an undead grunt, Cuthbert eyed the battlefield from far atop the hill. As his knightly brothers fought and swung their swords, they could not always see what was lingering just behind them. That’s where a well placed arrow came in handy--his job was to keep the enemy from getting the drop on his comrades, but when he saw Henric skulking around a corner of the structure in the distance, a chill ran down his spine. Something was happening. He didn’t think he saw Isaac or Cyrus talk to him before he headed in. It was unlike Henric to go charging into battle. No, attacking without thinking was usually Cuthbert’s job.
  36. With his horse riding down the hill at full speed, Cuthbert launched the last of his arrows into the the horde, then rode up beside Cyrus. “Henric’s gone and I can’t spot Alex anywhere.” Simply reporting what he had seen.
  38. “Well, get your sword out and get to fighting. We’ve got more dead to put back in their graves before we search for our own men.”
  40. “Yes sir.” Cuthbert hopped from his horse and gave it a firm slap to send it away from the battle as he pulled out a single blade. His off-hand wavered to the side, aiming his strikes. He made his way across the muck of the battlefield, moving about it a bit easier than his teammates. Making his way towards Tohru and stabbed the rogue sneaking up behind her.
  42. “Hey,” he said, smiling warmly. “You’re quite the skilled fighter.” He rolled his free hand through his hair, moving himself around her in covering her back.
  44. “You’re the archer.” The princess said with a bit of a smile. Her blades twirling around her and nearly swiping at Cuthbert himself. “Thanks for saving me.”
  46. “No problem,” he dodged her blades, as she spoke, ducking under one to stab another who was edging close enough to hear their conversation over the roar of clashing metal. “I’d hate to see a scar on that pretty face of yours.”
  48. “Oh, quite the charmer aren’t you?” She rolled her eyes, but her smile remained.
  50. “I try my best, but I’d like to think you have your pick of suitors, just throwing my hat into the ring as well.”
  52. “Oh, you wish to be a suitor? Tell me, is the political wealth as a knight not enough?”
  54. The two seemed to dance around one another as they spoke. A dangerous dance, stepping around one another, both nearly missing each other with their blades. Though, this was not some drunken jig, it was a delicate waltz with each dancer knowing the steps so precisely as to not step on each other’s toes.
  56. “I don’t care much for the politics, I’d just like to bed gorgeous queen like yourself.” He chuckled as he spoke only the truth.
  58. “I appreciate your honesty.” Her pursed turning from him as she plunged her swords into another ghoul. She turned away, but Cuthbert could see the blush forming on her face.
  61. Alex skidded between two dead men who grabbed at her. They were both unarmed, and she guessed they planned to toss her into one of the dirt pits that kept giving birth to pink and brown bodies. She just kept running. Everything around her navel and below was coated in muck, and her arms, torso, and shield had splatters and splashes of blood. Her face had somehow managed to get both, and as a result she appeared to wear war paint.
  63. She made her way to the bell tower, but wasn’t sure how long it took. Too long. And it made her too tired. No amount of training had made her ready for this, and Alex was only grateful that she didn’t have to kill living people and that she had seen enough death already following Henric on his mercenary work over the years. Without those things and without the driving force of adrenaline, the girl might have just screamed and run. Henric had trained her better than she had thought.
  65. By the time she made it out of the fray and darted around the wall to the gate that led to the tower courtyard, she found a duel. Henric with his greatsword and Yuya with her shorter, slender sword were fighting with grimaces on their faces.
  67. She saw Kerran next, farther back, watching nervously with his eyes on the duel. The sight of him still frightened her as deeply as it had the first time she had seen it, but like the ghouls he controlled he was something that Alex could overcome for the time being.
  69. The squire joined the dance.
  71. She surprised Henric, shouting his name and making him look.
  73. Yuya slashed Henric across the abdomen. It was only superficial. Henric doubled over anyway.
  75. Yuya went for Kerran while the knight was distracted. Alex followed her. As confusing as it was to stumble upon a fight, common sense told her that it would be impossible to go wrong if she made killing the demon her priority, but no sooner had she run past Henric than he grabbed her hood and pulled her back.
  77. “Alex!” he scolded her. “No. To me.”
  79. She stumbled back into him when he imbalanced her. “Let go, we have to kill him!”
  81. “No,” Henric repeated. He swept her feet from under her and shoved her down into mud. “Stay there if you know what’s good for you, Alex.”
  83. And when she ignored him, he kicked her down again. He didn’t see Alex in the dirt, he only saw a punching bag. The gash on his abs bled and hurt and made Henric want to scream and shriek, but he preferred to grit his teeth and get violent. It was her fault he was hurt. She was an idiot, even if he did love her. He would give her a scar to match the one he expected to have after this, he would teach her another lesson.
  85. He didn’t see Yuya cut the side of Kerran’s face when he reached for her chest and found no soulstrings to puppet her with, and he didn’t see half of the standing undead fall down like ragdolls when the woman repeated the action and left a gash on Kerran’s shoulder.
  87. Like everything truly evil at heart, Kerran was pathetic on his own without the support of minions. Without the ability to control Yuya he had very little to count on. He resorted to fighting with claws and tail with no time to prepare a proper spell, and it was the most frightened he had ever been on this plane.
  89. Alex took a few more hits and found blood coming out of her face, either nose or mouth or both.
  91. Living people returned to the courtyard starting with Sir Cyrus and Sir Isaac on their exhausted horses. Ian was secretly relieved to see more of his own kind. Given the choice between charging the demon and protecting Alex from Henric, the knights chose the latter. Isaac, the biggest of the men, grabbed Henric by his hair and sword arm and pulled him away from the squire, Cyrus got off of his horse to pull Alex to her feet.
  93. The demon was witness to his minion being apprehended. Outside the courtyard, his undead were still being dismembered. It was time for a retreat, like any necromancer with his back to the wall, like any demon all out of tricks. Yuya was wise to this, tumbling into his personal space through his wings even as he tried to buffet her away. She saw his frantic blue claws twitching in front of him and starting the spell--enough years spent watching Aziz, she’d at least learned a few tricks. Yuya made sure she could grab onto Kerran a few moments before his spell matured, and with a horrified look on his face, they left together.
  95. The other squires arrived in following minutes, curious to what had happened with their knights. Tohru arrived with a few of her best guards while the rest cut bodies, now returning to their states of decay, into pieces. They would be burned post haste.
  97. Henric lunged for Alex again, even with Sir Isaac holding him. He couldn’t reach her with the wicked sword he’d tortured her so fondly with. The girl stumbled out of Cyrus’ arms and groped on the ground for her sword. It was covered in mud, but good enough for what she had in mind. They had all been able to foresee Henric attacking her again, but they were certainly surprised when Alex ran at her knight with her sword held high, and even Henric was surprised when she drove it through his shoulder.
  99. Fucking finally, she thought, uninhibited by morals in that small moment.
  101. Cunning little bitch, Henric thought. I love her.
  103. A lot of shouting followed that Alex didn’t follow. Everyone was confused.
  105. Everyone.
  107. Mostly she screamed at Henric and he screamed back at her. He called her a bitch. She told him she hated him. He told her she had ruined everything for him by preventing him from protecting Kerran.
  109. They were separated, and the next thing Alex knew, Sir Cyrus had disarmed her and pinned her to a wall. She experienced it like she wasn’t there and was viewing it in a memory where she had no control of the situation. Like reading a very vivid scene in a book. She was numb but still fighting him to get back at Henric. Cyrus looked her in the eyes with one hand on each of her shoulders. “Alex,” he said. “Tell me what happened.”
  111. Over Cyrus’ shoulder, Henric was being dragged away. He was still screaming, and she tried to lunge again to chase him down, but Cyrus held her still.
  113. “Alex!” he said again, this time shouting.
  115. She started to fall back into her own skin and pick up the pieces of her memory of the last few minutes. “Kerran was here,” she said, trying the pick the most important thing. “Henric knows him. They were friends.”
  117. Alex swallowed and her knees shook. This was the end. She was going to have to tell them about everything else.
  119. “You’ve been crying since we got here,” Cyrus said. She hadn’t noticed.
  121. “I need to tell you a lot of things,” Alex said, defeated.
  125. Queen Tohru was gracious. She shared some rooms of her castle with them, including a cell of her dungeon for Henric.
  127. “He’s your knight,” she ruled. “As far as I’m concerned that means he’s your prisoner to punish. But, if he was with Kerran, I wouldn’t be kind to him just because I knew him.”
  129. There were healers enough to stitch Henric up after treating the Fiersi men, but they had to knock him out first to do the job.
  131. Alex waited in a room with many chairs and a lit fireplace. There were shelves with a few books and an ornate mirror on the wall. There was a table with a wash basin and she stripped off her armor and left it on the table in a muddy bloody mess and wiped her face as clean as she could. The girl thought she looked like shit when she saw her bruised face in the mirror, but she felt better without the chain mail and armor plates and tabard. Under it all she was merely damp in her brown trousers and red, high-collared tunic.
  133. She waited for her interrogation, pacing in the room and trying to think of how she wanted to list Henric’s crimes. By date? By who was involved? When did she want to confess to them that she wasn’t a boy and had been lying to them about that?
  135. It was hard not to cry looking back at the tabard on the table. She smoothed it out and looked at the pair of dragons through the grime. This was gonna be the day she broke her dad’s heart and left him sonless again. Eventually she walked back to one of the chairs and sat with her head in her hands until she heard the door unbar on the outside, and Sirs Cyrus, Cuthbert, and Isaac entered the room in serious silence.
  137. Alex looked to them for guidance or orders, and one by one they sat in chairs facing her and slouched. The men were tired, confused. Disturbed and angry that Henric had been allied with a villain under their noses while he pretended to be their friend.
  139. Sir Cyrus spoke. “Anything you have to tell us, we would very much like to hear.”
  141. Alex nodded somberly. “Do you just want me to go… like in order?”
  143. “However you can help.”
  145. “I’m scared I won’t be able to help.”
  147. Sir Isaac knew better and he said, “Alex, please.”
  149. She quieted and nodded to him. Waited a moment thoughtfully, and began.
  151. “He’s a monster,” she said. Words spilled out in a much more disorganized fashion than she had hoped. “He’s a monster. He hurts people, he kills, he’s been dragging me with him when he goes and takes mercenary jobs for as long as I’ve been here, I haven’t been able to tell anyone because if I do… and he…”
  153. Her voice gave out. Telling herself for so long that it would be a secret she would take to her grave made it impossible to finally confess. Telling the knights who had believed in her and trusted her for years made her sick, and only after a moment of gagging on them was she able to vomit the words: “And he hurt me all the time. And he raped me so much. I have so many scars I don’t even look human anymore.”
  155. The knights were taken aback enough that they were together silent and breathless for several moments. Alex went back to burying her face in her hands. “I’m a girl.”
  157. And they were excessively confused by this revelation. She’d expected an angry reaction, she had expected fury at being lied to and disgust that she had infiltrated their order. But they were quiet, watching her and waiting, willing at least to hear her out and follow the thread of the story. Sir Cuthbert looked absolutely shocked, Sir Cyrus was pensive. They all tried to reexamine her in a new light.
  159. Alex stammered a continuation, “I’ve been a boy since I was three years old, because I need to be a knight. There is… that is my only option in my life. I’ve worked hard. I want to be a knight. Please, for the love of everything, don’t kick me out…”
  161. “No,” Sir Cyrus said immediately, lifting two hands to silence Alex, whose words died in her mouth. “No, we… this is complicated, we’re not done yet. You haven’t even told us about Henric yet but--”
  163. “You kept his secrets and he kept yours?” Sir Isaac asked with a voice so dry it cracked the edges. He was more to the point than the others, and the squire wasn’t surprised that he was the one to figure out the nature of things first. He wouldn’t look directly at her.
  165. Alex nodded and started wiping her eyes. “Exactly. I… gods, when we’re out here, when it was this that happened... I let it go so far. I should have stopped it the first night but…” She shuddered and tears came hard the memory, at her cowardice and the fear of being caught between Henric and expulsion. She hated herself completely, hated every decision she had made. She never for a moment resented her father's pressure, however.
  167. None of the knights knew how to comfort Alex, and they sat in their own discomfort with feelings of dread. They had come expecting stories about Kerran about demons and necromancy. They came in expecting Alex to tell them about their brother betraying them, but it was a different beast to learn that he’d been hurting his squire under their noses for years.
  169. They were unprepared to see him as a rapist. That was why, they all supposed one by one, he had been so efficient.
  171. Isaac was again the one to speak. “Lad, it would be helpful for us if you could go through and tell us what you can.” He didn’t want to hear details, because they hurt his pride to let him know that he had failed so utterly at protecting a kid under his own roof and he knew that the more he would hear of Henric’s cruelty, the more of a failure he would feel. But if Alex would speak, he knew it would be the least he could do to hear her after years of failing to see anything.
  173. “There’s a lot,” Alex said. “So I guess just… I don’t know.”
  175. She slumped in her seat and put her elbow on the armrest and her forehead in her hand, looking at the muddy brown boots of the knights because she could not bear to look at their faces. All their armor was off and the mud and grime they were tracking around was all that was left of the combat. They waited for her to gather her thoughts, each man having put the pieces together in their minds enough to start guessing at what she might say.
  177. The girl didn’t make it a sentence before her voice cracked again. She sputtered the story of her first night in The Barracks--Henric catching her, holding her underwater to keep her quiet. She motioned at her throat when she told them about how he grabbed her there and when she quoted him her face scowled in a facsimile of Henric's face. It wasn’t fair how absolutely clear those memories still were.
  179. She told them of a few other specific instances, and generalized the rest. She didn't want to look like a baby but she told them how it had hurt most times, feeling guilty that they were all red in the face to be hearing such unpleasant details.
  181. She wiped her nose on her cuff and pulled some words from Henric’s mouth. “I was his personal whore. I don’t know how many times he said that. But he said he loved me too. I think he meant it.”
  183. Sir Cuthbert looked sick. Henric had often gone to him to brag. Henric had for years been telling Cuthbert about the sweet blue-eyed brunette in the village, and she saw now that Cuthbert was realizing the truth of the situation. His eyes checked her hair, her eyes, and he looked ready to cry.
  185. The squire wondered what weighed on them most. She knew these were good men who felt pain when they saw others in pain. Alex didn’t resent them. She didn’t blame them. She and Henric were both excellent liars.
  187. “I’m so sorry,” Sir Isaac said finally.
  189. Sir Cyrus asked, “Did he ever explain… why? What made him…?”
  191. Alex laughed harshly and leaned back in her chair. She tossed her head back against the headrest and shut her eyes, sniffing to try to stifle the tears. The shame that came with sharing the truth was still heavy on her chest, but it had stopped pulling at her tear ducts. “He’s just sick.”
  193. Sir Cyrus was the leader so it fell to him to fact check. He didn’t want to have to ask. “We all believe you, Alex. But… is there proof?”
  195. She pulled off her tunic. Fast, like ripping off a bandage. The soft inhalations from the men when she surprised them with the map of scars. Their surprised reactions made her feel hideous, and she flinched. Cuthbert turned away completely and Alex focused her eyes on her lap and their boots glared down at the tunic she held in her grip. Exposed to air, the handprint scar tingled and weighed on her like a real hand. There were more scars under her chest wraps, but she would never have taken those off. "Most of these are from the acid."
  197. “Oh Alex,” Sir Isaac said. Henric’s hand glared at him from her shoulder and the knight brought his hand up to cover his own shoulder while it tingled in phantom pain. “Oh Alex, I’m so sorry.”
  199. She pulled her tunic back on as fast as she'd removed it. “It’s not your fault. It’s not any of your faults.”
  201. Sir Cuthbert said, “Honestly, we couldn’t care less if you are a girl at this point. In fact, it’s a nice change of pace from the usual sausage fest we have going.” In times of stress Cuthbert still nervously cranked out jokes, he had never quite been this stressed, which may have caused the poor joke.
  203. It was a relief to know she would still be a squire, but there was more she needed to know. She felt the words and had to ask, had to know for sure, “But if you’d caught me earlier?”
  205. Discomfort in the room.
  207. “If we’d found out before we got to know you as well as we do… then… well, yes we almost certainly would have gotten rid of you.” Sir Cyrus admitted. It pained him to think of that as well, that if Alex hadn’t kept her abuse secret he would have had to make her suffer by ending her career. He didn’t have the faintest clue why a girl would want to be a knight, but he’d known her as a boy for so long that he couldn’t see her as anything else.
  209. There had been no way for her to win. They all saw that. At least at first, and because it had been there at first there could have been no knowing for the girl when she would have been safe to tell. Sir Cuthbert looked up from where his face was in his hands.
  211. Alex nodded. Of all things it was a relief to hear that. She smiled weakly. “I’m actually glad. Because it means that I wasn’t keeping Henric’s secrets for nothing.”
  213. Another uncomfortable silence followed. She wondered if maybe they were only letting her stay because they felt like they owed it to her, but pushed the question away because she didn’t want to know if that was true or not.
  215. “I’ll train him,” Isaac said to the other knights. They all knew Alex was closest with Ellis, especially Isaac.
  217. A faint smile made Alex’ lips twitch, both because Isaac had still referred to her as ‘him’ and because she couldn’t wait to train with a real knight. She shifted the way she sat in the chair, and started to tell them the rest of everything she knew about Henric and Kerran, Henric's mercenary side-jobs, his crimes.
  221. Alex left the room hours later in the dead of night with Sir Isaac. She used her dirty tabard as a makeshift bag to carry her armor, it all needed to be cleaned, and she could work on that tonight.
  223. “Does Ellis know?” Isaac asked her quietly while they walked. His footfalls were louder than hers in the queen’s elegant castle.
  225. The girl nodded sheepishly. “He kept me going a lot. But, I was a burden to him too I think. I feel terrible about that.”
  227. “He’s not the sort of man to let other people just use him,” Isaac said. “He really cares about you.”
  229. “That’s why I feel so shitty,” she whispered. “Because he knew what was happening to me. I wouldn’t let him tell you, and he begged me to…”
  231. They stopped outside of an empty room. Isaac said, “This one’s yours. I’ll be next door with Ellis.” He paused, looking at her.
  233. Alex was nervous.
  235. “We won’t let him get you,” Isaac said more quietly than ever. “He’s in the dungeon, drugged and under armed guard. I swear on everything, I will never let,” He paused and swallowed hard, not wanting to say the words. “Let it happen again.”
  237. Alex dropped her armor and hugged him for a long time, squeezing so tightly he found it difficult to breathe. He hugged her back.
  239. “I’m looking forward to squiring for you, sir.”
  241. He smiled and patted her back. “You’ve got that same nasty sir habit as Glenn. Just call me by my name like Ellis does. Good night, Alex.”
  244. Alex stripped down to nothing when she was in the bedroom alone. Sleeping naked was a habit learned from Henric, but it wouldn’t hurt her.
  246. In the mirror, she saw her scars and saw them, finally, as marks of the past. Her skin was no longer a work in progress under Henric’s rule. He was done using her as his canvas, and she swelled with joy to have her own body back. Rolling into the bed she kicked around under the covers and felt it all out, establishing her territory. She would not have to share this bed. No one would pull her from this bed and drag her to another. She could move around however she pleased when she slept here.
  248. Thinking those things, she became horny for the first time in years. It was so alien that at first she didn't even recognize the feeling. Alex hugged a pillow to her chest, feeling the cool fabric run over her nipples while she shifted and rubbed her thighs together and enjoyed the feeling. It was obvious to her why she was excited--she was her own person again. She would decide when she would feel pleasure, when she would orgasm. She was in control.
  250. Blushing and holding tightly to the pillow still, Alex’ fingers slipped into her lap between her legs. She almost wasn’t sure if she’d still remember how to play with herself after all the time, but she did. Oh she did. The girl bucked her hips into her fingers, rubbing her swollen clitoris with the pad of her index finger. There was nothing in her mind to masturbate to, only the feeling itself of warm pleasure embracing her and pooling in her lower abdomen as she stroke, stroke, stroked.
  252. Breathing hard, she rolled onto her stomach, sliding the pillow down between her thighs for comfort. She dripped her clear liquids all over it even before she got back to touching herself, humping languidly to add just the right amount of pressure to her work to make her burn. She was so hot between her legs that she could have started a fire with the heat if not for the abundance of fluids that slid out of her continuously.
  254. Except for her heavy breathing, she was silent. Except for the gentle motions of her hips lifting and then pressing deep into the pillow and the constant twitching rubbing stroking of her index finger, she was motionless, eyes shut.
  256. In control. No Henric. Safe.
  258. Alex gushed all over the pillow when she came, trembling as her whole body tensed up for the duration of the orgasm, then eased back into complete relaxation. She realized how wet the pillow was, but enjoyed feeling it there between her strong thighs, so she didn’t move it aside or shift her position.
  260. She lay there, alone and naked, because she could. There was no better reason in the world.
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