Their tents were side by side, almost connected. That was their tradition and one they were wont to break, despite the protests of the prince's entourage. He will betray you, they whispered. He is a commoner, they said. He has no virtue, no honor. Those that whispered ill against him quickly found themselves removed from the prince's presence. The others... well, they understood.
William was Edward's knight, not in title but in heart, and he would serve Edward as well he could until the day he died.
That did not, of course, mean that he didn't question his lord's logic at times.
"They're going to find out," he whispered cautiously. The tent flap was not as secure as he'd like. The prince had ordered solitude but that didn't mean someone couldn't still barge in.
"They won't," Edward assured him, his hands resting on either side of William's head. He pulled Will towards him, kissed him lightly on the lips.
Will's heart warred between guilt and temptation, caution and recklessness.
He kissed back and prayed the flap stayed closed.
Edward's grip on his hand drew him further in, towards the pile of cushions that marked Edward's bed for the duration of the tourney. "Stop worrying. It makes these funny wrinkles in the middle of your forehead." The prince smiled at him and poked Will right over said wrinkles.
He resisted the urge to roll his eyes at the crown prince of England. "There is good reason for us to be cautious."
"You'll cross lances with me but are afraid to be caught alone with me?"
"Your father will no doubt have words with me about the lances when we return. He doesn't like you jousting." Neither did Will but he knew better than to admit that. It was foolish of Edward to risk his life so needlessly, but Will understood. That was why he would never withdraw against his lord. This, on the other hand, was a different sort of dangers. "Your wife..."
"...will understand," Edward answered. "Do you honestly think she spends her time pining alone while I am gone?" He sat and tugged on Will's hand, encouraging Will to join him.
William frowned. Nobles were a strange breed. "My wife, Jocelyn..." Will started again. He felt horrible, betraying her like this. He loved her, truly he did, but she wasn't the only one he had fallen in love with.
"...is keeping my wife company," Edward told him with an arched eyebrow.
Will hit the cushions hard, his mouth flapping like a fish out of water. Jocelyn? Jocelyn and... She... He... This was all too odd, yet strangely fitting. He pictured them together in his mind and....
Edward's tongue slipped in his mouth and he forgot about wives.
This was not the first time they'd met like this, nor would it be the last. Tourneys, battlefields, even at court. Whenever his prince called, he obeyed, though some orders were sweeter than others.
They fell back on the cushions. Hands roved, slipping beneath fabric and loosening ties. Edward's hand trailed up Will's chest inside his shirt, counting the bones of his ribcage. Will's hands fisted in the front of Edward's tunic. He was always reluctant, when they were just starting out, to let his hands stray. His head said that they'd done this before, that he knew it was alright, but he couldn't shake that peasant instinct to look but not touch.
As if on cue, Edward gripped Will's right wrist and shoved it down the front of Edward's already loosened trousers.
"Hold my lance," Edward whispered in his ear with a broad grin then laughed at his own joke.
Will did roll his eyes that time, but he took hold nonetheless, wrapping his fingers around his lord's shaft. Edward did the same to Will and he shivered, already anticipating what was to come.
Each pulled the other free, exposing their cocks to the warm summer's air. They kissed, shifting closers on the cushions so they could grip more easily. Calloused hands slid along engorged flesh, practiced, trained in the pleasure of another's touch. Edward, the more experienced of the two, always led. Will followed, eager to serve.
He slid his hand along his prince's member, gaining confidence in familiarity. He shivered as Edward's thumb pressed against the head of his cock and closed his eyes to savor the moment.
Voices sounded outside the tent and he froze.
Will gasped as Edward's hand moved down to tease his balls. "Will you withdraw?" Edward smiled at him, mocking.
The voices moved away, retreating.
"It is not in me to withdraw," Will answered slowly and renewed his grip.
"Good." The prince's eyes closed in pleasure. He returned his attention to Will's cock, redoubling his pace.
Their hands moved in harmony, encouraged by the slowly rising blend of their voices. If it were any other man, Will would be shamed by the noises he was making. He moaned like a girl, his head falling into the curve of his lord's shoulder. His free hand clutched Edward's tunic. The prince tilted his head and dropped kisses in Will's hair.
Liquid spread beneath Will's fingers, lubricating his grip and letting his hand slide faster. He was gasping, breath torn from him with each quick tug on his erection.
The finish came, much like the end of a joust, hard, fast, and with enough force to knock his breath out of his chest.
Edward's arms came around him, holding him tight to the prince's chest. "Victory, my knight," Edward whispered in his ear. "Was it worth the battle?"
"A draw," Will corrected, "and yes."
They cleaned themselves and rested. At least now, with their clothes back in mostly proper position, Will could make some excuse in case anyone barged in. The fact that Edward held him possessively tight would have to be overlooked.
Sleep tempted him, but his brain returned instead to the prince's earlier words.
"Jocelyn and your wife?" He would never have guessed. "Really?"
He felt Edward nod against his hair. The wrinkles were back on Will's forehead.
"Why didn't she say something?"
"Women like their secrets."
He couldn't blame them for not telling him, though he wondered.... "And us?"
"They know," Edward confirmed.
"Oh." In a strange way, that explained a lot. Jocelyn's parting comment about riding hard and staying astride his horse made a lot more sense now.
Will blushed furiously. He hadn't realized his wife had such a dirty mind.
"Oh, and they wanted me to tell you, whenever you finally figured it out, that we don't have to sneak around the palace. We're perfectly welcome to share each other's beds."
"...want to watch."
Will's face matched the scarlet pillow his head rested on. Edward laughed and hugged him tight.
He really, really, did not understand nobles.