Entries tagged with “incest”.

The first light of dawn found Arlic at the hot springs, soaking in the steaming pool. Once he emerged, the two robed acolytes who had taken away his clothing now rubbed him dry with clean cloths, from head to hooves, then brushed him, leaving his snow-white coat shining and smooth; and then they guided him into the circle of stones, to the altar stone at the centre.

He’d known for weeks that this was coming, but being so close to the altar made it real in a way it hadn’t been before, and his heart hammered in his chest as the acolytes laid a patterned, woven blanket over the stone, arranging it just so, doubled over itself. And with that modest padding in place, it was his turn to settle gingerly onto the altar. A beaded leather cuff was wrapped around each of his limbs, padding the thongs that then lashed him to the four posts around the stone, leaving only his head and tail free. Thus secured, they gave his hooves a thorough polish, ridding them of what little dirt had clung to them between the spring and the stone.

And then, while one departed to continue preparations, the other sat with him. As the sun rose higher into the sky, she shifted a small awning to shade him. It was necessary that he remain there for all of Sowing Day, but it was not necessary or at all desired that he be uncomfortable through it; so she kept the light out of his eyes, shifted his bonds when he found they chafed, and brought him food and drink – sometimes water, sometimes wine.


The sound of rushing water filled the air – a constant, thunderous rumble that nearly drowned out even the raucous calls of the birds that flitted from tree to tree. Alik moved with care, each of the jaguar’s forepaws testing the ground before he shifted forward to put weight on it; he could see the gap in the trees, off to his right, where the gorge was, but there was always the chance of slipping on loose earth or wet brush, and so close to that gap, such a slip wouldn’t give him much time to recover.

Still, the scent of his quarry was clear. He’d followed it past pungent flowers and sweet fruit, past fallen logs heavy with the scents of mushrooms and decay, past more unpleasant things, and he’d never lost that scent for more than a few strides. He moved with care, yes, but he also moved with as much haste as that care allowed, each step swiftly following on the one before.


The next few hours were a blur.

Not in the sense of it being too busy to remember any detail, although they were busy. Mulin was dizzy from fatigue; he spent a moment in meditation, trying to clear the toxins of it from his body. It gave him only a momentary reprieve from his aching head, though it did much better in keeping his hands from shaking; still, he kept himself to the rougher work of chiselling grooves for the new elements of the spell-forms. Kralin smoothed them out and finished the finer detail. Arnak, the old Stonekin, toiled with passionate intensity; his body did not wear its nearly two centuries as well as some Archwizards did, and from time to time his step would falter, but his eyes and hands never did so; he shaped cold metal through the raw force of a Stonekin’s affinity for anything of the earth, bending it into the proper shapes to amend the existing forms, pressing the new pieces into the grooves the twins cut. At first he forced the metal to merge, as well, but it proved easier to simply have one of the twins go back and melt the metal together; at some point, Kralin took over the cutting entirely and left the welding to his exhausted twin.

Thinking was made no easier by the discordant feeling that built in the air. The flow of mana was unstable even here, now, where before it had been intense but quite straightforward; it was starting to eddy, and as the eddies gained strength the turbulence would grow.

Steadying the flow was in principle a simple task, but the sheer power involved in it was daunting.

They suffered no distraction. At some point Mulin was aware of familiar voices, but Kralin and Arnak together shooed them away.


There it lay before them – undeniable evidence that they were on the right track.

“I haven’t often wished I had mage-sight,” Hark rumbled. “But for the looks on your faces, I gather this would be an exception.”

“It’s…” Mulin tried to find a word that would convey some notion of the scope of this thing, without also suggesting admiration; he failed. “I don’t even know how to say it.”


The Moon Gallery was one of the older sections of Druumat; it hadn’t been planned, it had just happened. No two levels of the first five had quite the same layout, and no single access way connected more than two levels. Some sections on the same level couldn’t even be reached without going to a different one.

Finding their way to the northern section of the third level took the twins a frustrating amount of time, but at last they were there, five doors down from the mage-lit lobby.

Hoping he didn’t show too much of the anxiety that had his heart racing, Mulin lifted the knocker and gave it a light tap against its plate. It struck, not with a mere metallic clink, but with the sound of a soft chime.

Old and haphazard the Moon Gallery might be, but it was still the better part of Druumat’s residential district. Even the door bore a number of small, convenient enchantments – such as the knocker, and the seeing-gem that brightened for just a moment to the magic sense, and the wards that parted and pulled back the bolt.

He and Kralin exchanged glances. “I think that’s a good sign,” Mulin observed; as the one who knew the occupant, he took it on himself to ease the door open and lead the way in.



A flutter of rainbow wings, and Kralin was squeezing him so tight he thought his ribs would creak. His bookish twin held him close, snout against his neck. “Mulin, oh, Mulin. I’d heard you almost…!” The rest of his words choked off; Kralin shivered and, somehow, squeezed still tighter.

“Oh, Kralin…” Rather awkwardly, Mulin wound an arm around his twin in turn, and stroked his jaw with his other hand. It had been all too long since they shared such a tender touch; alas that the circumstances were so… well, almost-dire. “Shh. I’m all right now, Kralin. I’m fine.”

Mother looked on with a wry, toothy smile. “Well, Mulin, I think it’s safe to say you’ll be here all night, yes? At least, you’d have to drag your brother bodily if you tried to leave…”

Mulin’s tail curled a bit more; he ducked his head. “I’ll be staying, yes, Mother. Tomorrow’s soon enough to stretch my wings.”