Freedom. At long last he was free!

Delvin threw back his head and let a laugh tumble free, whipped away by the wind as Glitterdark bore him down from the clouds. The drake was in just as good humour as the rider, wings splayed wide, barely rustling as he rode the currents; his eyes were half-lidded, his posture as relaxed as it was possible for a dragon in flight to be, save that as Delvin looked about at the vast unspoiled landscape rising to meet them, the drake’s tail-fin splayed and relaxed in a rhythm of barely-constrained excitement.

Behind him, now, was the bewilderment of Choosing, the labour and study of a candidate with eggs hardening before the hearth, the gut-wrenching anxiety leading up to a hatching. They’d lived together through Glitterdark’s ravenous hatchling days, the confused young night-drake barely able to comprehend anything but his own hunger and Delvin’s devoted care. Then the lessons, the training, the endless, endless drills both on the ground and in the air. For years, they’d never had a moment’s peace.

And now, wonderfully, for the first time since he’d been Chosen by his dragon’s dam as a youth of fourteen autumns and entrusted to the care of Glitterdark’s cornflower-blue egg, the young man’s time was his own.

No more mornings bent over a table with quill and ink. No more sweltering days mucking out beast pens and dragon dens or evenings crammed into an overstuffed barracks. No more of Master Tavrel’s nasal drone about days long past and kings long dead. No more of Mistress Nella’s bellows and threats. Now it was left to them to fill their days, and if he still had tasks, they were the tasks of a man and a dragonrider, not a child whom everyone assumed to be just as wayward as his fellows however quickly he did his chores.

And Delvin was not ignorant of his tasks, no. The red panda was not like some of his fellows, who would probably be dissipating themselves in taverns and brothels for some time to come, wallowing in their new-found freedom until their purses were empty and their dragons’ needs became truly too much to ignore. Even in the busy weeks leading up to their clutch’s graduation, Delvin had been on the watch for opportunities – and it was one such that had brought him and Glitterdark here, now. Not for them the easy and cursed boring routine of a steading patrol, nor the constant travel but unreliable free time of a courier.

He’d caught wind of a seigneur granted a new fief in the wild lands of the warm Jade Coast, and had sent a message along. As he’d expected, that seigneur had been quite eager to have dragonriders moving into his untamed dominion, and for one who’d shown as much initiative as Delvin had, he was quite happy to offer an entire steading, if Delvin was willing to explore and tame it.

Willing? To get away from the bustle of the barracks, to see lands nobody else had, to live by his and Glitterdark’s wit and ability, to come into contact with people only as he saw fit? That was the biggest understatement of his life!

Glitterdark levelled off over a broad expanse of lush green leaves, shadow sliding and rippling over the canopy, wings wavering. With the sun rising, the night-drake’s sensitive eyes weren’t quite as much an advantage as they were at night, but they were still just as keen as Delvin’s, and the dragon was first to spot a likely place to descend, calling out and veering to the left, towards the gleaming line of the coast.

Seeing the line of the land through the thinning trees, Delvin started to hope; and then, as Glitterdark swept around and the panda saw the true lay of things, hope burgeoned into delight. A long peninsula sheltered a placid cove, and from that peninsula a rocky promontory swept up through the jungle, leaving a cleft in the otherwise-dense trees. That promontory continued up toward a craggy cliff, and where the two met, there was a shelf of rock, easily large enough for a night-drake to land upon, if not one of the larger dragon breeds like a sun wyrm or dusk glider. And most fortunate of all, a deep shadow against the cliff suggested there might even be a cave there.

Glitterdark backwinged and settled neatly on the shelf, uttering a satisfied huff. Delvin leaned this way and that, unbuckling his harness, then slid down from the drake’s shoulder, trailing his fingers fondly along Glitterdark’s neck as he strode toward that shadow. It was a cave, all right – and while he couldn’t see into the gloom to know how deep it went, the opening was certainly broad enough for Glitterdark to slip through.

“What do you think, big fellow?” Delvin asked, gesturing to the cave. “Home?”

In answer, Glitterdark growl-huffed again, striding past his rider, flank and tail brushing the panda’s side. He furled his wings in tight, ducked his head under the rock overhang, and strode into the darkness without missing a beat, vanishing into the shadow with one last flick of his tail-fin. His claws clicked on stone as he went deeper into the gloom – quite a bit deeper; at least a length. And as Delvin followed more cautiously behind, the drake turned to one side, apparently doing a circuit of the chamber. It certainly sounded spacious enough.

Delvin fished in his pack for a glow-stick, igniting it with a sharp rap against the stone. In its green glow, he made out a mostly-flat cavern, about twenty yards long and half that across, narrowing at the back and sloping sharply upwards. There was a very faint gleam of light through that passage; squinting up it, Delvin thought it looked like nothing so much as a weed-choked chimney.

It was a single room, but it was many times bigger than the one he’d shared with three other boys in the barracks. Even with Glitterdark in there, it was big enough to feel downright palatial. If he could buy and cultivate some glow-worms, he could keep it gently lit without worrying about smoke and fire. And if he could clear and shelter that shaft, he’d have a natural chimney to do cooking under.

He made his way back outside, shading his eyes with a hand and looking out to the sea. There was a fine view over the rocky promontory and the cove beyond; if a little village were to spring up there in time, this place would have a commanding view of it all. As befitted the one who would be responsible for watching over it on his seigneur’s behalf.

It would take work to make that cave a liveable space, and a great deal more to make it truly comfortable, but the potential of this place was amazing. He’d hoped for a decent place to eke out a living, somewhere Seigneur Varion would be content to have him watch over a new settlement. What he’d found was a better place than he could ever have dreamed of.

He got to work. First, he took off all Glitterdark’s packs and riding gear, and unpacked his cleaning things to give his dragon a good and proper grooming. He cut some big branches, trimmed the smaller ones free and bundled them, and with the drake’s help, got the leafy branches into the cave, spreading them out into a passable bed that Glitterdark was quite happy to occupy at once.

One of the bigger, now-stripped lengths of wood served admirably to punch through the clot of dirt and roots in the shaft, and he had his chimney. Delvin left the stick jammed up it, climbed up to the top of the cliff, and with that additional sign, located the other end of the chimney easily enough, putting together a little shade and digging a channel to keep water away from it. He’d need to check it regularly, especially until such time as he could get a good stone channel in place, but it’d do to keep that chimney clear.

That done, he found a secluded little cranny and dug a latrine pit. In the long run he’d need to come up with some better arrangement, but it would serve for the moment and for the near future.

That was enough work to start. Rather than mess about with cooking, he pulled some journey rations out of his pack, confident now that he’d be able to get fresh food before running out of the stuff. It wasn’t exactly a feast, but it was filling, and had enough spices in it to keep it from being inedibly bland.

A bit of climbing around revealed a stream a few minutes away, and the last of life’s necessities was thus assured. What he’d done up to that point would have been suitable for a campsite for a few days; knowing that fresh water was in reach – good, clear, clean-tasting water – he could continue making this place a home.

That could wait. After slaking his thirst, he stripped off his riding leathers, his finer leather jerkin and trews, and the linen undershirt beneath, leaving just a cotton breechcloth that was, if anything, easier to wash than his own dense pelt; and he waded on in to give himself a long-overdue wash.

The dragonhold had provided the luxury of heated baths, whereas this stream was really quite chilly. But here, he didn’t have to worry about limited space, prying eyes, or snide comments on his skinny frame or, on the other hand, his inconveniently hefty manhood. And he definitely wouldn’t need to worry about keeping the latter under control.

In fact, all those thoughts and images he’d pushed down while in the baths at the hold, now he could luxuriate in.

Oh, it wasn’t as though the apprentice riders hadn’t been quite accustomed to the pleasures of the flesh; those that hadn’t arrived with an awareness of them tended to learn within a few years. But they still had a pretty rigid notion of what partners would or would not be appropriate, and, well, most of the boys he’d shared the baths with would not have been happy to learn that Delvin’s eyes weren’t on the girls.

Well, in fairness, they hadn’t all been that bad. When Calver had left the hold and the boys had been muttering about his romantic tastes, there’d been a handful of them who’d just shrugged it off and mentioned women or girls who’d made them a great deal more uncomfortable. Merris and Hale had even gone so far as to admit they’d have given the man a chance, and the ensuing sniggers hadn’t lasted very long when the two of them – a blacksmith’s son and a woodcutter’s, respectively, both of which looked very much ready to take up their fathers’ trades – had responded with nothing more than raised eyebrows. Merris had been the only one of the lot to notice Delvin’s discomfort with the situation, so far as the panda could tell; and, apparently, the bear had put things together properly and known whom to talk to in order to get a taste of another boy.

Prior to that regrettably singular encounter, there had of course been Calver himself.

Calver hadn’t been another apprentice, but rather one of their instructors. He’d taught them about survival in the wilderness – how to hunt with their dragons, and if need be, how either partner could hunt alone if the other was unable. He’d shown them some of the many things a person could supplement his diet with, and been careful to impress upon them that, while there were more such things out there, they were things that not all races found edible. He’d also taught them the less-extensive list of things a dragon could thrive on.

The later lessons had been quite personal – just Calver and his dragon, an amiable reef skimmer named Seaspray, along with the apprentice and his or her fledgling mount. Dragonriders never went through the wilderness in groups, he’d said, because dragons were simply too big eaters. Along the coast, dragons who were inclined to dive and enjoyed fish were better off – they could easily find and bring up huge fish that’d serve even the biggest of dragons as a worthy meal – but otherwise, they simply couldn’t find enough forage if there were too many in one region.

The girls had all been adamant that Calver had never made any inappropriate advances on them, and that was probably the real reason the boys had muttered about the big tiger having… other tastes. He’d never made any moves on the boys either that Delvin had seen. It was Delvin who’d worked up the courage and the curiosity to ask, the day after one of those wilderness exercises, if there was any truth to the whispering.

There was, as it turned out – even if the whispers had likely started for the wrong reasons. And once he’d known Delvin was honestly interested, Calver had been quite eager to provide him with lessons of another sort.

Delvin still remembered the last of those journeys, before Calver went north to a nobleman’s employ – just like Delvin had gone on to do a year later, in fact. Oh, yes, Delvin remembered that outing quite clearly. It was little more than a formality, Calver had told him beforehand. They probably could have been out and back in a day and set Delvin on his way to graduation.

But it was the last time they’d have alone together, and both of them had been quite eager indeed to make the most of it.

They’d done the necessary tasks first, and done them quickly. Only when the last of them was complete had they taken time for each other. But Calver certainly hadn’t wasted time at that point – Delvin’s first real cue that all the journey’s chores were done had been the tiger’s arms wrapping around him, warm breath over his ears, a telltale firmness against the small of his back.

Delvin bit his lip, propping himself against a tall, vine-wreathed tree with just his feet in the water, toes sunk into the wet sand of the stream bed, wrapping a hand around his bare wet flesh, squeezing it, feeling it swell in his grasp. Sun and stars, that had been a fine thing, feeling the bigger man’s need rising against him. On the one hand, it had been so long since he last felt such a thing that he ached for it.

On the other, thinking back now he could remember it with such clarity, it was almost like Calver was right there behind him, holding him up with one arm around his chest while his other hand strayed lower, keeping their bodies in line as the tiger’s oil-slickened manhood slid in deep under the panda’s tail.

That had just been the first of their couplings over those last few days. Stars, every moment not spent caring for their dragons’ needs or their own, they’d spent as lovers, pleasuring each other so many times in every way they knew how… but that first time had been truly remarkable. Long pent-up, neither of them had lasted long, but oh, the intensity had been delicious – the tiger thrusting into him harder, faster, breaths quickening, until…

A curious trill wafted over his ears on a puff of warm breath, jolting him back to the present.

There he was, leaning on a tree with his toes in the cool water, one hand splayed over his chest, the other wrapped tight around his straining manhood. And there, peering down at him around that tree, was Glitterdark, not dozing through the afternoon as Delvin had automatically assumed, but right there behind him.

The sudden guilty thought seized him that while he’d untacked, groomed, and – so much as he could – stabled his dragon, he hadn’t seen to the next meal. Delvin swallowed. It hadn’t been that long since Glitterdark hunted, and he’d expected the drake to sleep until well after noon, but he should have done something about it instead of… well. “H-hungry, Glitter?” Damn it, the stammering wasn’t going to help make anything better. He swallowed again. “There should be enough in the packs for…”

But Glitterdark, who knew full well what it meant to be asked if he was hungry, hadn’t acknowledged the query at all, and certainly hadn’t drawn back. He dipped his head down, snuffling over Delvin’s shoulder, and the panda stiffened as the drake’s tongue flickered out, tasting scents – the scents of wet fur and high arousal.

With a curious trill, the drake pushed down farther still, forked tongue dancing over Delvin’s still-rigid length.

It was a line of fiery delight drawn on his needy flesh, and Delvin cried out, arching up from the tree.

Instantly the dragon drew back, yanking his head away with a high, almost shrill warble – the sound he made when he thought he’d done something wrong; Delvin was so used to it in that light, he interpreted it within the space of a breath as apologetic. “No, it’s okay,” he blurted, reaching up to run his hand – the one that had lately been on his chest, not the other – over Glitterdark’s muzzle, up over his broad brow. “It’s good,” he murmured. “Really good. I just… didn’t expect it.”

The dragon uttered a cautious but inquisitive chirp, slinking forward somewhat, forepaws slipping into the water with barely a ripple. He nuzzled his rider’s side, then turned his attention once again lower, studying the ebon shaft that bobbed right in front of his snout. Again that tongue slid forward, its fork cradling the man’s length as it slid upward, tasting it – not as he would a new treat; this was something Delvin hadn’t seen in Glitterdark before, or in any other dragon for that matter.

It very much reminded him of Merris, though, when the other youth had been taking his first tentative taste of Delvin’s manhood.

Stars. Delvin’s instructors had said he and Glitterdark were close, and the drake was bright enough for a person – but he’d never heard of dragons being intimate with their riders! Even Calver hadn’t mentioned that – though, to be fair, Seaspray, however friendly and obliging he was, was a pretty dim member of a rather unintelligent breed. It’d be like making love to a hound – which, now that he thought of it, someone could probably convince the hound to do easily and agreeably enough.

This, though, was something else entirely. Glitterdark wasn’t like that; he was a partner, even a friend, and after that initial shock, it really didn’t seem unethical, or even all that strange, that he might be a lover, too. He was being in every way a lover, now, as he lapped at Delvin’s manhood – sometimes pausing as the man cried out especially strongly, but quickly learning that those cries were quite pleased indeed. And – moon and stars – learning with amazing speed just how to keep the man squirming, never once in discomfort, but always in delightful if perhaps overwhelming sensation.

And when Delvin cried out harder still, clutching at the dragon’s horns and pulsing over his exploring tongue, Glitterdark let out a surprised and rather undignified squeak, but didn’t flinch or falter; he kept lapping until the man was spent and trembling, and might have kept at it even then had Delvin not started to feel overwhelmed by sensation and flinched.

Even then, though, Glitterdark didn’t need a cue; he could tell right off that this was motion of another character, and stopped what he was doing, peering with very evident curiosity at Delvin’s softening length.

“Well, that I didn’t expect,” the rider laughed, rubbing Glitterdark’s brow. “Thanks, Glitter, that was… very nice. But what about you, hmmm?”

The dragon just tilted his head and trilled curiously, apparently not quite grasping what his rider meant. But when Delvin beckoned, he strode down into the stream – and though he was promptly engulfed in roiling, concealing water, before he got there Delvin could see something quite distinctive indeed.

He licked his lips. “Turn over, Glitter,” he coaxed, putting gesture to words; the drake queried him, but then complied, with a reluctant, whistling sort of sigh as that something drew away from the water’s touch.

When he’d hatched, Delvin had needed his instructor’s word to know the drake for male. Now, even if he didn’t know the subtle differences between males and females of a dozen different dragon breeds, a total layman could have seen the truth; for as Glitterdark settled himself belly-up in the stream, water coursing over fine dark scales, one conspicuous detail rose proudly above the surface.

Delvin waded in to his dragon’s side, mindful not to step on one of the outstretched wings, and took a closer look, licking his lips. Fully two feet long, maybe a little more, it was a relatively-slender taper; from a base much thicker than Delvin’s fist, it came nearly to a point. The flesh was a deep violet, gleaming with moisture from its brief bath – and perhaps something else as well.

The man licked his lips, starting to extend his hand, and then he paused. Looking up to the drake’s head, he asked, “May I?” Glitterdark peered back at him, eyes half-lidded, pupils constricted to tiny points of black amid green pools against the midmorning sun. The drake rumbled softly as he thought through what Delvin had said, culminating in a low, affirmative bark and a slight tilt of his body, putting the object of the man’s gaze in easier reach and making it bob slightly.

So Delvin let his fingers spread over flesh that was wonderfully warm, stroking it, while the drake let out a very pleased purring sound, cut off for a few moments when his head briefly sank right back against the stream bed. The panda kept stroking, feeling his way along it, stretching his fingers to encompass as much of the base as he could, then gliding up from there, feeling it narrow in his grasp. So warm, so smooth, and slick in a way that its dip in the water couldn’t explain – it was delightful. And the way the drake trembled in response to his touch didn’t hurt in the least. If it had been an unpleasant sensation, he had no doubt that Glitterdark would have made him aware of it.

He leaned in closer still, spreading one hand on the drake’s side for balance, inhaling a rich, unequivocally masculine scent such as he’d never known in a dragon, but which was quite recognizable indeed as male arousal, and he touched his tongue to the very tip. It bobbed somewhat, nudging against his nose, and he laughed; but that brief contact had told him the drake tasted quite fine, rather sweet and almost spicy at once.

He took a few more licks, the drake’s hindpaws curling, one forepaw smoothing along the panda’s back – just like a two-legged lover might do to urge him on. It dribbled quite copiously over his tongue, slippery against it, and a fey impulse seized him. What else might they do together? Oh, the entirety of the dragon’s piece was much too large for him – but Glitterdark had shown himself capable of great restraint in many situations.

Could he do so while he as making love? Rather suddenly Delvin yearned to find out. He hadn’t had a lover fill him since Calver left the Hold, and this – this would fill him as he’d never been filled before, and still leave more he couldn’t quite take.

However much he could get, though, he wanted – wanted quite badly indeed.

The slickness flowing from the tip of the drake’s length, liberally coating the front third of it or so, was finer than anything Delvin and Calver had ever managed to find together, certainly finer than the flask of light oil Delvin had packed along to lend some ease to his time alone. Besides, the response he got as he smeared this stuff along was utterly delightful – unambiguously pleased, those sounds, plain even though he’d never heard their like before. And Glitterdark pushed up into his touch just as any other lover might – but the drake was several times larger than any lover he’d had, so the response was that much stronger.

The panda leaned in, planting a kiss just behind the pointed tip, ears canting to drink in the drake’s answering whine; then, still smoothly stroking, Delvin leaned back a touch, looking up at the drake – uncharacteristically wide-eyed for this time of day, attention fully on his partner. “Let’s try something else, big fellow,” Delvin said, still tracing the outline of the drake’s piece and wondering if he’d soon be regretting this. “But I’ll need you to be very careful, okay?”

The drake’s head tilted, and Glitterdark uttered a concerned crooning sound. Delvin wasn’t sure how much of that was from his words and how much from his own cautionary tone – it could be hard to tell, sometimes, just how much any dragon understood, and even his years with Glitterdark still left it sometimes in doubt. He didn’t quite know what Delvin was getting at – that was both plain and unsurprising; he hadn’t exactly given the drake many hints yet. Time to fix that.

He settled himself on the bank, thanking his lucky stars that the sand very promptly gave way to pebbles; his hide and fur were thick enough to soften the contact, but getting sand out of his pelt was nightmarish. Once he was nestled in, he beckoned to the drake, gesturing with both hands to get Glitterdark facing him directly.

Somewhere between the drake’s head passing the rider’s hips and it going completely out of sight over Delvin’s head, Glitterdark’s ongoing rumble of curiosity and confusion gave way to a brighter chirp of interest, underlain by a deeper thrum that was probably another sort of interest entirely; it sank right down into Delvin’s bones, making him shiver in anticipation. He’d already propped up his knees; now he pulled them right in close, tail curling upward, brushing against the drake’s flesh, while his hand stayed poised down there, ready to guide that taper in. Glitterdark made it so easy, though, following Delvin’s tail upwards with a deep, resonant rumble; hot flesh met his fingers without any need on his part to reach for it, and immediately the dragon checked his stride, letting Delvin guide him.

“Keep moving,” Delvin murmured. “Slowly, though, just a little bit – that’s it,” he purred, as the drake started to creep forward, tail flicking over the water’s surface. Inch by inch he pushed in closer.

And then the drake’s tip nudged under Delvin’s balls, and both their breaths caught.

“Slowly,” Delvin gasped, however much he longed for the bigger male to just shove in. “Push down just a little – hold on…” He bit his lip, shifting his hips just a little, and then the drake’s taper landed right where it needed to be, and he shuddered. “Oh, stars – that’s it, now start pushing a little more – oh, moon and stars, yes…!” Words gave way to a throaty moan of need, his hand spasming around the dragon’s length, a finger’s breadth below where it was pushing into him, spreading him open.

The first thing Delvin noticed was how easy a start it was. Narrower at the tip than any of his small handful of past lovers had sported, and naturally quite slippery, it spread him open like it was designed to do so.

The next thing he noticed was the warmth. He’d always known Glitterdark to be comfortably warm under him when he was riding, but some part of him had put that up to a contrast with the cool air. Not so this; the dragon’s flesh was very, very warm, almost hot, and that heat spread through him now, warming him from the inside.

The third thing he noticed, as the drake slid in deeper, was just how big that piece really was. Well over half a foot in, the drake was just starting to rival in thickness the girthiest of Delvin’s past lovers – but there was plenty more to go, and with each inch Glitterdark pressed forward, not only did he spread the panda wider, he plumbed depths that nobody else ever had.

By his reckoning, he had about a foot of the drake’s hefty piece in him when he felt a sudden surge of discomfort, drawing a sharp breath and tensing – and it didn’t go unnoticed; instantly Glitterdark froze atop him, uttering a half-curious, half-worried trill.

“Back off just a bit,” Delvin panted, splaying his hand against the drake’s belly, and, sure enough, Glitterdark eased back – not enough to take an actual step, but definitely enough to ease that excess fullness. Delvin moaned, sinking back against the pebbles, as discomfort faded and pleasure returned to its full measure. Glitterdark was still shifting slightly over him, inside him, as the drake panted, but it was a modest thing, quite pleasing in the subtle stirring it gave rise to.

The panda swallowed, curling his tail up and wrapping it right around that hefty pole. Gods, that certainly drove home just how much more length the drake had to him… He pushed the thought out of his mind. “Okay, Glitter,” he husked. “I want you to remember how far in you are now, and don’t go any further than that, okay? Ease out a little bit – just a little, not all the way – and come back in, almost as far.”

Sun, moon, and stars – the drake moved perfectly. He pulled back a few inches, slid back in, out and in – slow enough to give his body time to adjust, fast enough to keep the sensation surging. The soft huff of his rapid breathing was punctuated by low grunts and growls, enough to make quite plain indeed that he was enjoying himself, but not nearly enough to drown out Delvin’s own gasps and moans.

The panda couldn’t help but be mostly passive – Glitterdark was so much bigger and stronger than him, and had vastly superior leverage – but he did what he could. He got something of a feel for just how the drake liked him moving, when to squeeze and squirm. He could feel the dragon’s pleasure rising, not the quick and crude imperative of a mating beast, but much more like a person’s drive, answering his own; and when the drake tensed atop him, voice rising to a tight whine, Delvin threw his arms as far as he could reach around the drake’s body and hung on for dear life.

He’d thought himself full already, but then the dragon’s hot seed rushed into him, a palpable jet of liquid heat driving in deeper still than his flesh, rushing into whatever space the drake’s length had left. Another jolt of it came, and another, as Glitterdark panted over him – so much of it he thought he was about to burst. But before it could grow truly uncomfortable, the drake pulled his still-bucking length back, leaving Delvin stuffed only with the softer warmth of seed – more of that same seed which then jetted over his own balls and shaft as the tail end of the dragon’s pleasure played out.

It was all a little too much. Without even another finger laid on him, Delvin felt climax seize him again, arching up off the pebbled shore and crying out again and again, his own much more modest eruption mingling with the mess on his belly.

He’d thought the dragon’s tongue had brought him intense pleasure. This, though – even lying down, this crashed upon him so hard it left him dizzy.

He slumped, gasping for breath, and Glitterdark shifted atop him, firm shaft rubbing for a moment against his own softening manhood, then drawing away. The drake settled himself mostly in the stream, forepaws folding over Delvin’s chest and head settling atop them, and let a very pleased whuffle waft over his rider’s face. Laughing weakly, Delvin brought a hand in to stroke over the dragon’s muzzle and up to the base of a horn.

“Stars, Glitter,” he sighed. “That was… something else.” All this time together, he’d never thought they could be this much together…

In response, Glitterdark just let out a soft whurf and closed his eyes.

Delvin couldn’t help but laugh. Now the dragon wanted to settle in for his midday rest, did he?

Well… he had the water lapping at his toes and the comforting presence of his dragon against him. There were worse thoughts than settling in for a nap like this.

He grinned, letting his own eyes slip shut. Here he’d thought the absence of a lover’s touch might be the main disadvantage of this isolated post. Apparently he wouldn’t need to worry about that!