Later, wrapped around her soft sated body, his legs entangled with hers he told her how the Pythia had sent him back and what she had told him to tell her once he found her. “I suppose we will have to travel to Mount Parnassus where the temple of Apollo is to find her.”
“She is coming here for the festival. She may be here already. She is the guest of honor for the great banquet on the third and final evening of the festival.”
“That is some coincidence,” he whispered into her hair. “First I find you almost the moment I land in Knossos and now she is here, too.”
“Balance wants to be restored,” she said turning to kiss his shoulder where she had been resting. He made a non-committal sound in response and asked her to tell him what the festival entailed.
“Tomorrow there will be vendors setting in the square to sell their goods and foods to the crowd. It is a day of relaxation where no one works and everyone is free to do as they please as long as they harm no other.”
“Sounds wonderful,” he said snuggling her closer. “Can we spend it here, like this?” She chuckled.
“I think we can work something out, but there are some things that I would like to show you.”
“Good. What about the second day?”
“The second day is filled with athletic events. First wrestling, then a foot race around the city and last the Leapers will take the arena and perform their sacred dance honoring the bull and the snake.
“I read about them, the bull has no name that I could find. The goddess is called As-sa-sa-ra.”
“The Bull has no name, he is the infinite strength that holds the world on his horns. The goddess represents fertility and is depicted holding a snake in each hand, symbolizing the female influence on the male gender.” He thought for a moment about how Sookie had definitely seemed like an all-powerful goddess to him when she held his snake in her hand. Then another darker thought pushed that back.
“Is it dangerous, this sacred dance?”
“Asks the man who traveled through time to be here.” She shrugged. “Most things worth doing are.”
“But you don’t have do it anymore. I am here now.” She turned to face him.
“And I am glad, but I must do this. They took me in when I was bound for servitude in a brothel! My brothers and sisters kept me safe from even the King, Eric. I can’t desert them now that the moment they have practiced for has arrived. Some of them have waited their whole lives to perform tomorrow. I can’t let them down. I won’t!”
This was her, the Sookie that she told him about but that he had never met before. Her existence was mythic to him, something that she told stories about in the past tense. Telling him what she was going to do, what he was going to have to watch her do was entirely different. The hard truth was that Sookie could die tomorrow, harpooned on a bull horn, her precious lifeblood mixing with dirt as her life drained away. Deep emotions rolled over inside him, pulling and tugging at places he had never felt moved of touched before.
As her husband it was his job to protect her, care for her. Letting her do this flew in the face of all those duties. To deny her this choice and many more like it that he saw lining up inevitably in his future would forever change his Sookie into someone else. For just a moment he let himself wonder if he would have found her so irresistible if she had first come to his grandfather’s office without her fabulous tales of adventure. Is that part of what he needed from her as much as he now needed her body pressed to his?
Having known the pleasures if their joining he would never be able to deny himself her touch again. Her actions no matter how risky were an intrinsic part of the mystery that was Sookie Stackhouse. He could settle for no less than everything.
“Promise me you will be careful?”
“I don’t have to be careful. I just have to be good.”
“Are you good, Sookie?”
“Pretty damned good.”
“You better be.”
Lulled by the sound of her steady sleeping breath Eric felt himself relax completely for the first time in his life. There was nowhere else he wanted to be and nothing else he wanted to be doing. He was smiling when he drifted off and slept a dreamless sleep.
She woke him with the sunrise, wriggling from his long arms to relieve herself the small room at the corner of her little house that he had seen the night before. He had been surprised to see that Knossos had a sewer system beneath it. They had redirected part of the nearby river to run under city. It was superior in some ways to the systems they had back home. When he had commented she had spent an hour praising Greek architecture and the way they designed their temple and buildings to catch the light at different parts of the day.
“They figured out how to light each room with the sun, depending on the time of day. They use the chambers in accordance with the time of the meeting so that it is always bright and serviceable.” He had thought that over as she went on.
He had come here with preconceived notions of what the time and place would be like. He had though it would be less than the life they had in 1932, inferior in technology and that the people would be less as well, savage and frightening. In his time here had learned the opposite to be true. They weren’t less, they were just different. In some ways they were superior.
They used the land as part of their structures, not changing the land to suit them, rather changing themselves to incorporate the natural landscape around them. It was a harmonious existence that was very attractive when taken as a whole. Then Sookie said something that took him out of his thoughts and back into the conversation.
“This city was designed by Daedalus himself, as was the Labyrinth that is beneath it.”
“There is so much in that sentence that I don’t even know where to start!” Her eyes alight she and turned to him.
“I know right? THE Daedalus, here, now. THE Labyrinth, here, now. It’s…amazing!” She went on after a moment. “I met him once, at the palace. He was there to consult with Minos and the Leapers had been summoned to attend the function as well. I learned that day about the architectural intents in design and how everything the he builds is set to compliment the land it rests on. The city and the Labyrinth run downhill, its entrances at the bottom of the hill that Knossos sits atop.” Eric’s head was spinning.
“Is Icarus still alive?”
“Yes, I met him as well. His father’s son to be sure. He is curious about everything around him.”
“As I recall that doesn’t end well for him.” She frowned then.
“No, it doesn’t, but I decided that to try and change that would be…well…there is no way to tell what else would change if we changed his fate.”
“Shouldn’t we try though? I mean if Daedalus invents his wings and the boy flies too close to the sun he will die. If we can save him, shouldn’t we?” She shook her head.
“I think that we are too small to know the wide rippling effects of saving his life.”
She returned to him on the bed of blankets they had shared the previous night with a bowl of water and cloth in her hands. He was distracted from his philosophical wonderings by the way the early morning light kissed her skin as she moved through the room. She was so beautiful that it took his breath away and made him want her again. Throwing back the blanket to let her see the affect she had on him, he watched she set the bowl down and lay down beside him
“Good morning,” she said softly, kissing him, fanning the flames of desire in him even higher when he felt her soft breasts press against his chest. “You look so good here in the morning light,” she whispered in his ear as she kissed his neck and tried to get even closer. His arms came around her, but she pulled back.
“Sit in the chair,” she said, rising to her knees and reaching for the bowl of water and cloth. He rose, curious to see what she had in mind. Once he was seated she wet the rag and stood to wash his face gently. He closed his eyes and let himself enjoy her touch. Down his body she moved, washing his back and chest, his stomach and his legs.
He moaned and reached for her when she washed between his legs, unintentionally arousing him even further until he was hard and throbbing. Provoked by the sounds coming from him, she leaned in and kissed him again. “You take my breath away with your magnificence,” she said softly, looking him the eye so that he could see the truth of words.
She kneeled then and washed his feet. Slowly, getting all the dust off him from his travels with such care and tenderness that he was nearly undone right there. When she was done she set the bowl aside and walked on her knees toward him, coming up between his legs and placing a trail of soft kisses on his belly. Her eyes looked up as her mouth came down on his hard shaft, the feeling of her tongue teasing the tip of him made him come twitch in her hand and mouth, his head falling back in purest pleasure, unable to keep his eyes open. She released him long enough to speak and take the rest of his mind from him. “I wanted to taste you last night. To love you in this way.” His hands came up to tangle in her hair as she took him in her mouth again.
The sensation was so new, her hot mouth so different than her hand or her body as he had taken her the night before. She swallowed him, using her hand to pump him as he had shown her the night before and in moments he was exploding inside her mouth. Startled, she pulled back suddenly. Some of his seed running from between her lips as she realized what had happened. The sight of her like that affected him just as it had the night before when he had spilled across her body.
This time he slid from the chair, pulling her to him. Her kiss tasted different, but not unpleasant. His elation at her desire to take him into her in this way excited him even more. He expressed that feeling in his kiss and within moments she was writhing against him, aroused by their passion ready to join again as they had before. He pulled back, kissing her lips softly one last time and then taking the bowl rose to get fresh water. “Sit in the chair, please.”
Slowly he squeezed the water from the rag and bathed her as she had done with him starting with her face. She bent to his touch, moaning her pleasure are he cared for her. When he came to her breasts he squeezed the rag again, letting the water run down before wiping her clean. The cool water and his attentions had made her nipples stand up and he couldn’t resist kissing them and taking a gentle suck of each one as he moved the rag down her legs. She opened for him, letting him wash her as she had him.
He let his fingers replace the rag and touch her for a moment as she had shown him to the night before. She pressed down on his hand wanting more. Her hands came up to his shoulders as he touched her. After a moment he pulled away gently to wash her feet as she had his. Her eyes never left him the look on her face was almost that of a woman in a trance as he finished and set the bowl aside. Then he walked toward her on his knees as she had done for him and kissed his way along her leg until his face was between her legs.
Using his fingers he sought out the place his fingers had memorized, following them with his tongue. When he first touched her nub with his tongue she moaned and thrust her hips at him opening her legs wider to give him more access. He placed her legs on his broad shoulders and went back to licking her, moving in circles around her nub and then across it. Thinking of how good it felt when she had sucked him he puckered his lips and did the same to her. She moaned his name and let her head fall back. Pleased with her response to his efforts he did it again until her whole body seized, her feet arching against is back as she found her release.
As he had found with his taste in her mouth, her body tasted different and good in a way he had not expected. He felt himself respond, the aching need to be one with her again increasing to the point he could not stand it any longer. Pulling her down to him he kissed her, his face wet with her juices. Again, she responded to him and the taste in way that made him feel so much pleasure he could barely stand it. To be with her, his sweet Sookie like this, so free and fearless was unimaginably good.
Lost in need and instinct he pulled her back to his chest and raised her small form, lining his erect flesh up with her entrance. As soon as he found it he felt her wetness start to coat him. Gently he eased her down, opening her legs over his further so that he could reach her nub with his long fingers. When he started moving in tight circles with his fingers while rocking up into her as deep as he could get, she moved his other hand to her breast. “I love you,” she said, turning to kiss him again her tongue dancing with his.
They rocked together slowly until between his fingers and his hard length she peaked again in his arms, tossing her head back and forth in his shoulder as she came. He was enraptured with her every move and word as they experienced this new love in the light of day. Seeing her made him need to move harder. Raising her gently he guided her onto her hands and knees before he pressed up behind her, finding his place inside her again.
Taking her hips in his hands he held her there while he let his hips move into and out again, growing in speed intensity until he felt the pressure build inside him. Knowing he could wait no longer he came down over her, catching his weight on his hands, but touching his front to her back, needing to feel as much of her as possible. He kissed her back and her neck. “Love you, Sookie, so much!” he managed to get out as he came deep inside her so hard that he nearly blacked out. He caught himself in time to fall to the side of her body and felt her curl up next to him before he could no longer keep himself awake.
This is heaven, his last thought before sleep took him again.