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Fairgrove A town of 3,958, ruled by a lesser branch of House Solvitreo and treated as Lord Solvitreo's summer retreat. Fairgrove is named for its citrus groves and located along the Godswash, a main transit route from the mountains to the Tal Solarii port.


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Old 06-07-2016, 10:07 PM   #1
(Ser) Kain Vellfyre
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Default 5.04 night (after feast) - Here we are again - Alys, Kain (closed)

His time was mostly spent with the men and joining the guards. Kain knew his own faults but being in charge of the guards and men, he did not delegate it--he sat watches himself to make up for the shortage of men, and lost at dice to some of his sergeants because he needed to encourage them and letting a few extra Vellfyre coins fall into their pockets helped. Arriving at Fairgrove meant at the least he could spend the night in his own bed rather than riding perimeter or watching the barges, as Khorane's guards were ample enough and he trusted them more than the half-green dunces Carolin sent with them.

With all of the tasks at hand, he'd mostly seen Alys in passing since their last conversation in Moonspire. Hell, he'd seen Amina only slightly more. There just wasn't time to deal with anything personal when horses had to be sent along the river road, and men had to go with them then the barges needed guarding...

He walked into the Moonspire chambers already tugging at his tunic and tossed it to his squire. "Go to bed, lump," he ordered. "Hercule can manage." His valet hustled to do as Kain ordered, and set about helping him off with his boots while Kain set on the bed, untying the neck of his linen shirt.

"Where's my wife?"

"At the feast, was she not, lord? Shall I send for her?"

Kain's eyes rolled. "No. Let her enjoy herself. I set Marc to mind her, but I lost track of both of them."
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Old 06-07-2016, 10:35 PM   #2
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Like with every feast between now and the time she married, she was having a very difficult time enjoying it. Every action was being scrutinized. She knew it. It was one thing to make a mistake as a Fairwind. A ward. Another to make a mistake as a Vellfyre wife. When people started to retire, she couldn't have been happier. Once a good amount had gone, she said her few farewells to the people who might have cared, and then she was on her way, hurrying to retreat to her chambers.

She was looking forward to the peace and quiet, the isolation. Even if that's when things were at their loudest, at least nobody was watching. But, that was not the case tonight. She stepped within and paused, her eyes caught on her husband as if she wasn't sure she was seeing it right. Slowly, she closed the door and turned to face him again, more prepared to put a smile on.

"Forgive me, my lord. I was not expecting to see you."
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Old 06-07-2016, 10:51 PM   #3
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Ah, there she was. "Hercule, why don't you go settle yourself somewhere and get some rest. You look a fright. Tell my lady's maid she can do the same." Though he knew full well their servants would be sleeping in the next chamber--there wasn't room enough in Fairgrove's castle for everyone to have a bed, not even with many noblemen choosing to stay in their pavilions. The palace was meant to house the Solvitreos--not the Solvitreos and the king [i/and[/i] his court.

"Sorry to intrude, Alys, but I didn't fancy another night in the tents." Kain stood up. "Turn around, I'll get those laces undone. How was your evening?"
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Old 06-07-2016, 10:58 PM   #4
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She watched him as he relayed his commands, trying to get a sense of his mood. Alone, she turned, facing the door again and reaching back for her hair to pull around to her front, playing with the strands with both hands.

"It is not an intrusion, my lord. They are your chambers," she told him. "The feast was fair. The food was good. It was... a little quieter... But, I think nobody is guessing as to why."
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Old 06-07-2016, 11:20 PM   #5
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"Exhaustion. And anticipation for the games." He pulled her laces loose, pausing to rub his injured arm. The cast was gone days ago, but he wasn't yet pushing it by training. "The magister said you're recovering quickly. You've certainly acquitted yourself well since last we spoke. I... am sorry, my lady. I have not had much time for you. I can only explain that I've had little time to speak with anyone not wearing armor."
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Old 06-07-2016, 11:25 PM   #6
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"The magister is kind," she said. She knew she was back in her own mind. She knew the worst of it seemed behind her. But she was waiting. Waiting for another wave of it, for surely it was coming. And being sober wasn't something she really cared for either. For many reasons. "Nobody has, but I do not blame them. I am not in need of attention and know that you are needed elsewhere. Though, I would be lying if... Well... Never mind. I am glad to see you now, my lord."
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Old 06-07-2016, 11:51 PM   #7
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"Mm. are you? I wonder." He touched her cheek as he stepped around in front of her. "I think it's time we put you in a household again. You need something to fill your time and I don't want you bound to a pack of your own bratty charges yet."

He leaned in and his lips replaced his fingers on her cheek. "I think you do need attention, Alys. I think... you need to remember that I made you certain promises. I said if you were good, if you kept your wits about you, and showed you meant to be a good wife, I would reward your efforts. So slip that dress off, Alys." He pushed it down her shoulders to encourage her and to emphasize he wasn't accepting any argument.
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Old 06-08-2016, 12:29 AM   #8
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"Yes," she answered truthfully. He was, after all, one of the few people she could call a friend left on the progress. There was Zanara, but since her injury, she'd been hard to pin down. And of course there was Tyana, but Tyana seemed to have enough of her own shit going on. Alys didn't want to trouble her with more. "My thinking is not so far from yours, my lord. I was thinking I might be able to win some favor with Lady Melantha. After the bandits... she seems to be a lot less inclined towards outright revulsion when she looks at me. So... it's a step in the right direction."

She didn't know why she shuddered when his lips touched her cheek. Had it been so long? No... It wasn't that. She closed her eyes, unaware that her body was leaning closer to his. It took her arms a moment to catch up to what was going on, and when she finally got them to cooperate, she tugged, pulling the dress down over her breasts to her waist, revealing the white chemise beneath. It didn't take much more to make the dress pool at her feet, leaving her before him in her underclothes.

"My lord...?" She opened her eyes and looked up at him.
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Old 06-08-2016, 12:49 AM   #9
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Kain's smile was slow and predatory. He stepped back, his fingers leaving her skin with obvious reluctance but he crossed his arms to enforce the message. "Now, take off the shift. And anything under it. I haven't gotten to see my wife naked for a long while. I admit to a fair amount of curiosity."
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Old 06-08-2016, 12:55 AM   #10
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She was unsure. Both afraid of the look he was giving her... and intrigued by it. Whatever feeling was winning didn't matter. What mattered was she needed to get the shift off. Which she did with little ceremony, tugging it up over her head and tossing it down by her feet. She pulled on the lace for her smallclothes, parting her legs a little to allow them to fall, and as she moved her feet, she slipped them out of her shoes. All of this was done with her eyes locked on his.

"Curiosity?"
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Old 06-08-2016, 01:04 AM   #11
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"You are as beautiful as I remembered." He chuckled, appreciating her boldness and meeting her eyes. "Whatever I complain of when it comes to our marriage, Alys... I will never once fault your beauty. And in truth... I do not complain at all of this arrangement. Not with you as you are now." He moved closer again and put his hands on her throat to tilt her head so he could place a heavy, slow kiss on her lips.

"Do you remember our wedding night?" he asked against those same lips. "I want to know, Aly... was it the pain that made you come so much? The forcing? The bruises?" He kept his grip on her throat. "No lying. Whatever the truth, tell me. Now."
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Old 06-08-2016, 01:19 AM   #12
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She didn't know what to say, but the words had an obvious effect on her. She leaned against him, hands going to his chest, lips parting for him. She whimpered when he began to speak, her tongue flicking against his lips instinctively. Her eyes stayed closed and he breaths became heavier.

"I remember it..." She took a breath and opened her eyes. "The truth? It is hard to say... I think... a little of all of that... I think... maybe more... Maybe..." She looked down at his chest, her fingers spreading. "I think I also just liked... that I belonged... that I belonged to somebody. Even if... I was sure you didn't want me... I still belonged."
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Old 06-08-2016, 02:12 AM   #13
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"Aly, you still belong. You're mine." He kept his eyes on hers and his fingers stayed stiff around her neck--not marking her by any stretch, but making a point. One hand moved up and back, tangling into her dark hair and holding it tight, forcing her head back so he could claim her lips in another long, rough kiss. "Do you need a reminder, Aly? Should I shove you down and force my cock into you again? I bet you're already too wet to be forced. Maybe I should spank you? Hm? Leave pretty stripes across that alabaster skin... your father should have done it more often. Maybe you wouldn't be in this position, forced to wed a cruel, monstrous husband."
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Old 06-08-2016, 01:19 PM   #14
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Alys' hands came up to touch his wrist, not pulling his hand away, but gripping firmly as if the ground might swallow her if she didn't hold on. She stepped closer to him, looking at his lips and then his eyes again. Her brows set in concentration, and then she leaned in, getting to her toes, lips brushing along his jaw towards his ear.

"There are worse fates than this... And worse men than you. You may be a monster, Kain... But then, so am I. So are we all." She went back onto her heels. "Tell me what to do, and I will do it. But, I know... I know I am yours. Nobody else's."
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Old 06-08-2016, 11:17 PM   #15
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He let out a low chuckle and released her throat, only to grab hold of her hip. "You know shit about monsters, little girl." The hand in her hair twisted and he dragged her head back in a rough, sharp angle, yanking her away from his jaw. "You think fucking around in my uncle's court taught you monsters? You think my aunt whipping your pretty back showed you pain?" He leaned in so his eyes bored into hers. "When did you last pull a man's guts out while he screamed? When was the last time you held your brother as he screamed for a cunt of a mother who never gave two damns for anyone but herself? Hm? Do you know what happens when you pull a man's ribs out through his back? When you whip him until the bones show through the skin and the blood turns blue?"

He snarled at her. "I should flay the skin off your fucking thighs. See who you think owns you then."
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Old 06-08-2016, 11:29 PM   #16
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She let out a sound that was not quite a moan when her head was yanked backward, and her eyes stared straight up, seemingly interested in the ceiling above. She knew how this felt with the snow. How she could pull herself out of her body and watch as if it were happening to somebody else. What scared her most now wasn't her husband. It was that it didn't feel that different.

"You're right, my lord. Nobody knows monsters like you do," she said, her voice hollow. "My pain is as nothing compared to yours." She pictured the images he described in her mind and held onto them. She didn't know why. But when her eyes dropped to look at him, she saw what she'd been avoiding. "I know who owns me, husband. I know what I am... And what I am good for." Gods. No matter what she did, she would live in Hell.
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Old 06-08-2016, 11:59 PM   #17
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"No, you don't." He let go of her hair and sighed. "You don't understand the first damn thing about it." His hand rubbed along her scalp in a gentle massage to rub away the worst of the lingering pain. He released her hip and after a few moments he stepped away from her, hands leaving her entirely. More than anything, his expression was one of regret. "Put your shift on and go to bed, Alys."

Kain turned away, reaching for a bottle of wine Hercule had left on the bedside table.
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Old 06-09-2016, 12:31 AM   #18
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She didn't argue. Mostly because she didn't know what was happening. Or what had happened... She stood stiff as a plank for a moment, only registering he'd walked away after he'd grabbed the bottle of wine, and she looked at that hand and that bottle longingly. Her hands began to tremble, she noticed, and that's what brought her out of the stupor. Bending down, she picked up the shift and put it over her head and then turned to sit down on the edge of the bed. Her hair she still toyed with nervously as she looked down at her feet.

What had he been referring to. That she didn't know his pain? Or that she didn't know what she was good for. She supposed both were true. She dared to look at him again, feeling something... Something was good. Only it was an angry something she didn't understand. Gods, if he was anybody else...

"I'm sorry," she said softly, but not meekly. "It must be humiliating... No matter how I try now, it does not undo what I've done before. To be saddled with such a wife... You hurt me. You make me bleed. You build me up and then knock me down... But I don't blame you. And I don't hate you." She pulled the coverlet and looked at the cushion. "I could find somewhere else to sleep, my lord... If you desire your bed empty... Or if you wish to send for somebody else."
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Old 06-09-2016, 12:41 AM   #19
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Kain snorted as he poured the wine. "None of this has a damn thing to do with whatever shit you did before, Aly. Stop using that excuse. And stop finding a reason to run off. If I wanted you to sleep somewhere else, I'd say so. If I want to sleep somewhere else, I will." He set the bottle down and lifted the cup, saluting her as he turned. "I wanted to see what happened if you were pushed. Just how far down that lack of snow actually helped... and I got my answer. Whatever put you in the snow- taking the leaves from you didn't fix the problem."

He took a drink. "Someday, I hope I'll push you and find someone inside. Aly. Someone who can be afraid and weep... or be happy and laugh. Right now? I don't think she's in there yet. All I've got is a beautiful doll with some working gears to make her say the right thing and do the right thing... but she doesn't really feel much, does she?"
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Old 06-09-2016, 12:56 AM   #20
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And there it was...

She shot to her feet, glad only after the fact she couldn't reach anything that she could throw at him. The cushion wouldn't have hurt enough. "And what good would it do? To show you what I feel? Would you even care? Would anybody? And why should they? Why should I trust you with my feelings. You own everything else... You have my life in your hands, and you toy with it like a kid who's found his father's sword. So I'm to give you my feelings? Why, so you can hurt those, too? So you break the only part of me I have left? No... Fuck that. I'll say the right things because you asked for an obedient wife. But everything else..."

She kicked her dress away so she could find her slippers and she bent to grab them, plopping down on the bed to put them on. "I'm fucking terrified. Of everything. Of court, of the king... of my own damned husband... I have to feel nothing... Otherwise I feel everything. I don't know what you want, Kain. A friend? A wife? A fucking doll? It doesn't matter... Because whatever you want me to be, I'll try to be... and not be fucking good enough..."

She sat straighter after she got the second shoe on. If he was going to kill her after that, at least she wouldn't try to run away bare footed.
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Old 06-09-2016, 01:02 AM   #21
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He listened to her rant, watching her. Letting her get the shoes on while he set the wine aside. But when she straightened up, he took the step across the tiny room and reached for her. Not in violence, but to put his hand on her cheek. "There. That's all you had to say." His voice was quiet, gentle--not a tone many people ever heard from him. "I can respect that, Alys. And you."

He held out his hand. "Come here. Please. You are good enough. For me. Perhaps that's not much, but I hope it's something."
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Old 06-09-2016, 01:10 AM   #22
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Alys flinched when he neared, her body tense as if ready to launch herself up and run for her life. But what happened was worse than an attempt at murder. It was... unexpected, and her guard was already down, and then his words came and she didn't have any defense for them.

She lifted her hand because it felt like the right thing to do, but the moment her fingers closed around his and she heard his voice beckon her closer, every stone in the tower she'd built up cracked and fell, and Alys let out a strangled sob... Was this surrender? It felt like it... And it didn't. She stood and her knees gave, forcing her to fall against him. And she cursed... And cried... And hated that she couldn't stop.

"It is..." she wept, not sure if she could be understood. "It's something... I fucking wish it wasn't... I wish you didn't matter so much to me... I wish nothing mattered this much to me... It's easier... to feel nothing... Gods damn it... It's so much easier..."
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Old 06-09-2016, 01:23 AM   #23
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"Shhh." He caught her light weight easily, and held her tightly to his chest to let her cry while he set on the bed, keeping her in his lap. His fingers combed through her dark hair, slow and careful. "Easy isn't right, little doll. Life's hard, and terrible. And fucking amazing in between to remind us. You miss the bad parts and you miss the good ones." He kept on holding her. "I told you before: I want you. I didn't want a doll or a wife, or a friend. I'd like to have them, sure... if you wish to be those things, I will not complain of it. But you are more than that short list, are you not?"
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Old 06-09-2016, 01:31 AM   #24
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Little doll. Damn, was it strange that she couldn't help but think, now of all times, that she really hoped this was not a catching new nickname? She smiled in spite of the tears. At least it was something to hold onto so she could calm down a little. "I am... I am a lot of things, Kain. And not... not all of them are good things... Most of them aren't... And I'm afraid if you see them... you'll hate me."
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Old 06-09-2016, 01:39 AM   #25
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His brows rose. "I was not jesting earlier, Lys. I've done all those things. I'll do them again, no doubt. Hell, I'll do worse. And I set half my uncle's city to blaze last winter all to calm a riot from a handful of assholes. To revenge us against perhaps ten of them. I fly into black rages and beat the hell out of friend and lover alike. I may do it to you someday--and I hope to hell you'll forgive me if it happens. Most women would never..." He sighed. "So, let me decide if I hate your dark sides."
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Old 06-09-2016, 01:58 AM   #26
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She licked her lips and breathed deep. "I know you weren't jesting," she said. "I know... that it should scare me... But it doesn't." Another deep breath. "I forgave my brother every time he beat me... I imagine I'd forgive you. At least... you wouldn't mean it." She closed her eyes against the words. "It wasn't always about not feeling, Kain... The snow... I know what could happen if somebody takes too much... Sometimes... I took too much... But I was too much a coward... I am weak... You've a weak wife... How could you not hate that when I hate it so much that sometimes I cannot breathe?"
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Old 06-09-2016, 02:09 AM   #27
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"I am not you, Lys." He pressed a soft kiss to her tearful cheek. "I don't mind weakness. People are made in many shapes- some are weaker and some are rock. I do not find you all that weak but even if you are...? There are worse flaws." His hand swept along her back, and he kissed her hair. "Things need not be flawless to be beautiful, or cherished. Or loved. I demand honesty from you, not strength. I demand a flawed and broken truth rather than lies. Because I think the flawed and broken thing is far more beautiful than the other one."
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Old 06-09-2016, 02:36 AM   #28
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"Well... I can definitely promise to be flawed," she said, her hand coming up to touch the side of his neck. "Kain... I would be lying to you if I said the things you've done-- what you've told me, what I've heard-- haven't scared me a little. I'd be lying again if I told you none of it mattered to me... But you are not the only man to do questionable things. You are not the only man whose stories are alarming... And I don't think I can ever fully understand... But I do understand that for that very reason, I cannot judge you. I never raised a sword to defend Edolon. I never bled to protect anybody. I don't know... I don't know it... You do. And I'm sorry that you do."

She pulled back a little to look at him. "But no matter what you do... or what you have done... I am here. I am your wife. I am your friend. You will at least always have one person on your side, Kain. Even if it's the wrong one... Even if I am afraid... I will tell you so... and then I will stand with you."
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Old 06-09-2016, 02:48 AM   #29
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"You should be scared," he admitted with a tired frown. "I am not a good man, sweetheart. And I will not lie to you, so you will know the darkest of it. That's the price of wedding me, Lys. You'll know that I don't mind putting men to the question, and I don't lose sleep over the flames that swallowed lives in Firewell. That every man finishes a battle hard as stone though most of them pretend otherwise. Killing makes me want to fuck. Then again, so does seeing a pretty woman, or waking up some mornings." He laughed, and kissed her hair, then her forehead.

"I did fuck Lenore, by the way. We were having quite a bit of fun until she chose to yell at me in Mirrormount. It was a bad day--you'll learn those, I think. The days when things... when the rage is at the fore. I do my best not to talk. Then I lose it and I wake up with my knuckles red and blood across the floor. Someone else's. She's damn lucky Lucia and some guards heard it or I'd be dead and you'd be wedding some Reacher lordling." He touched her cheek. "You'd probably have been happier. I'm sorry about that."
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Old 06-09-2016, 03:04 AM   #30
(Lady) Alys Fairwind
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"That's pretty fucked up, I guess," she said, looking up to meet his eyes. "Blood does it for me... I don't know why. I haven't been to war. I haven't been hardened by it. I just... see it... and... I'm drawn to it. I've never said that out loud. I... kind of wish I still hadn't," she admitted, looking away. "It's not pain that does it, though... Just blood... Somebody else's, mostly, but I don't mind if it's mine... Which is pretty fucked up, too... but in a different way."

Her hand came up to cover his and she shook her head. "It's not so bad as you think, Kain. Sure, it's... not easy. And I do fear making you angry... But sometimes I get angry and I forget that I care that you can hurt me. And sometimes, I don't think I mind that you can... But I think in some ways, this is how it's supposed to be. I don't think I could have been so honest with another husband... I don't think I'd have stopped the snow for another husband... I think you're what I need even if it's not always what I want... But it's not all fear, Kain. And it's not only respect. I'll never accuse you of being kind... but you... are something. There's a word for it that I don't know... but... you make me feel... You make me feel in general... And you listen. And you believe I am more. So fuck it... You may not always make me happy. But you'll make me angry and sad and frustrated and things that I can't feel if I'm not feeling... And, you're not a good man. But you're the man I want."
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