Enox vic Enlan was in deep shit. Literally. He groaned, stomping his chilled feet in protest. No animal should produce that much refuse. why did they need to stable Erophants in the first place? Oh, right. The merchant's guild was conveening at their estate to celebrate his father; a successful merchant whose position had been elevated to minor nobility after preventing His Royal Neediness (as Enox referred to the 13th prince of the crown who often visited their estate, enamored as he was with the family's youngest daughter) from expiring due to his own sheer stupidity. Prince Balanix had shot himself on a hunting trip and it was only Enox's father's quick thinking and sure hands that saved his royal life. Thus, nobility.
The beasts in question were highly valued in the trade business for their armoured hides, massive bodies and gentle behavior. And if they occasionally burst into flame if they were in a mood, well, shouldn't have put them off in the first place. They also were, to Enox's dismay, veritable shitting machines. To the poor and less fortunate, an Erophant's droppings were a highly desired commodity. When dried into bricks, one block could burn for up to three days continuously, providing much needed heat during the harsh spell of winter. No merchant worth his chain would pass on a (literal) pile of free, easily tradable resource. Of course, it was usually their servants who were conscripted to the odious, odorous and thoroughly unpleasant task of shoveling the refuse into the molds, where they would dry and become fuel. But most first sons probably kept their mouth shut when a merchant began praising the so-called luck of the family to be visited so often by a prince of the crown, even as far removed as he was from the actual crown itself. Calling out any royalty at all for shortcomings was considered by polite society to be treasonous at worst, scandalous at best. Remarking that the one who had convinced his father to promote them to nobility had the intelligence of a wandering widdershins, well. It wasn't anyone's surprise that Enox found himself removed from the warmth of the feast to the shit-filled Erophant stable.
The young man grumbled and heaved another shovelful into one of the molds, wincing in disgust at the wet plopping sound and the renewed fumes of freshly turned scat.
"Enjoying yourself, young master?" a sly voice interrupted his work as a slim youth came into view, leaning negligently against the leg of a placid Erophant.
"Gaivin." Enox acknowledged the newcomer with a wary glance. Gaivin was a commoner, a simple servant, but he carried himself like someone with more. There were whispers that his father was not a farmer but rather a passing fae. Of course, anyone who said this within his hearing somehow ended up with misfortune for the next few days. The stable boy had never confirmed that he had the gift of misluck, but he hadn't denied it either, and events spoke for themselves. Petty as he was pretty, he was often more trouble than he was worth.
"Or should I start referring to you as my lord? You are, after all, nobility." Gaivin smirked, moving in closer and gracefully managing to avoid the piles that littered the straw-strewn floor. Enox scowled. Half the piles bore the mark of his boots, something that Gaivin, judging by his exaggerated over-stepping, had noticed and was subtly teasing him about.
"Master is fine." Enox said tersely, uncomfortable with the sudden proximity of the other boy, whose jade eyes glittered with mischief. He knew that look, and hated it. "How about you pick up a shovel and help?" he stabbed his own into a pile, grunting as he hefted it up.
"Oh, I couldn't possibly." an innocent smile, "your father expressly told me that you need to learn your lesson and to supervise you." he leaned in closely, relishing in violating Enox's personal space. He traced a long finger over Enox's smooth chin. "Does that make me your master? My, my."
Enox barked out a laugh and leaned away. "Trying to seduce me amidst piles of shit? This is a new tactic." he snorted. "Can't say it's working better than anything else you've tried." He turned away and shoveled another pile, missing the brief frown that flitted across the other's face before giving way to a thoughtful but wicked smile.
Gaivin examined the burgeoning man in front of him, soaking in the young noble. A site for sore eyes, to be sure. Broadening shoulders. A thin, tapered waist attached to still-awkward legs that he hadn't quite grown into. Like a young stallion, full of the energy of youth and begging to be broken and ridden. Gaivin longed to be the one to do it. He could imagine it clearly. His hand, fisting the ragged, overgrown sable mane. Those expressive amber eyes, so rare a color in humans, darkened with desire while his cheeks flushed, unsure.
"Yes," Gaivin sighed while stretching, artfully dragging up his shirt to expose his trim waist, not missing how Enox's eyes darted to the exposed strip of pale flesh. "But I've never been your master before, have I?" an eye roll greeted his words and he smirked. How naive. A loud CRACK splintered the air before a sputtering curse flew out of the other's mouth. The shovel's handle had broken clean off, leaving nothing to grip save for edges of ragged splinters.
"What the hell?" Enox whirled, staring at the stable boy. "That shovel was fine before you showed up." He squinted suspiciously, boldly meeting the other's eyes.
"Are you implying something?" How could I have possibly had anything to do with it?" Gaivin said silkily, shaking his head with mock sadness. "I mourn the fact that your father bought such poor quality supplies. Really, being a merchant, you think he'd know better…" He enjoyed the way the other paled and then turned red, grumbling angrily. In truth, Gaivin didn't mind people questioning his heritage. His mom had all but admitted that she had not been faithful, and being a son of the forest was a cause for pride, not disdain. He would never tell anyone that, though. It was far too much fun and such an easy excuse to create mischief.
"Oh, my lord, your hand is bleeding!" he feigned alarm, grabbing the smaller man's hand and yanking him closer. "A splinter, my lord. Come, sit down so I can remove it." he lead the other into his secluded quarters attached at the back of the stable. "If the Erophant's smell blood they may become upset and I don't think your father would appreciate a fire." with a hidden grin, he pushed the other onto the bed.
"It's a simple fix, really. I'm fine!" the other man stuttered. "It's fine, Gaivin." he repeated, licking his lips nervously.
"Oh, but you've been shoveling refuse for the last few hours. We don't want you to get an infection." the faeborn's voice contained far too much glee. "Here we go, it must be cleansed." He met the young noble's eyes before kneeling between his legs. "Did you know that saliva has antimicrobial properties?" he deftly plucked the splinter and rubbed it with a cleansing poultice before licking the finger, enjoying the way Enox's eyes flew wide, pupils dilating wildly.
"G-Gaivin." the stable boy nearly groaned at the stuttering, unsure tone. He felt Enox attempting to pull his finger back and swallowed the digit whole, delighting in the shocked inhale that resulted. He applied a pulsing suction, caressing the tip with his tongue. He flicked his eyes up innocently at the reddened face above him. He knew the picture he made. Long lashes flitting at his cheeks, lips puckered, cheeks flushed with desire. He sprung up, pushing the inexperienced other man into the bedding before capturing those perfectly formed lips with his own. Gaivin ground his groin into the other's waist, groaning at the feel of his master's desire, hardening underneath him.
"S-stop! Mmrph!" Enox turned his face, panting.
"I can feel your want," Gaivin hissed, eyes flashing. "I know that I am pleasing to your eyes, I see you looking often enough." a blush followed his words.
"I-I can't!" Enox gasped, attempting to scoot out from underneath the older boy.
"You can." Gaivin snarled, bending over and biting at the tender flesh of the other's neck.
"Oh-oh! No-" Enox's hand fisted the sheet and a moan escaped him as Gaivin found a particularly sensitive spot. Gaivin was nearly mad with desire. He had wanted this for so long. He would be the first to mark the virgin skin of the highly desired young lord. He sucked with relish, leaving a large, reddened bruise as a sign of his victory.
A loud bang broke through the room. "Knock it off Gaivin, or lose your position in this household." a stern voice interrupted, ignoring the furious look that was sent his way. "I'll not tolerate you accosting our young lord." the stable master; a middle-aged, stoic man regarding the scene in front of him. Enox was gasping underneath him, looking stunned and trembling so delightfully.
"Lord Enox, your father wants word. I suggest you fix yourself. You've got better things to do than to rut with the likes of him." at this, he sniffed the air, his thin lips turning in a puling frown. "Stinkin' of shit, too." He stood in the doorway, clearly planning to stay until he could escort his charge back to the main hall. The man didn't trust Gaivin, with good reason.
Gaivin looked downright murderous. Enox quickly scooted out from underneath him, cursing and tripping in his haste as he exited the door with one last glance at the bed. The faeborn remained kneeling, staring straight ahead, flexing his long-fingered hands and pulling them into fists. "I will not forget this, Sain." the older man stared at him levelly.
"You're not to be touching the master's son. He's nobleborn now, and you know what that means as well as I do. Your fae blood may have been enough to bond him, maybe not. But either way, his maidenhood isn't yours. That shovel'll be coming out of your paycheck too."
Gaivin smiled, and it was an unpleasant thing. "Go protect your ward, sir." he spoke softly, venemously. "He'll be safe from my ways for now. But you won't be around forever. Accidents happen, do they not?" the smile widened, exposing teeth that were sharper than usual.
Sain shook his head. "I'm not afraid of your magic, Gaivin. I'll not allow you to be rapin' who you please livin' in fear of a little bad luck."
"Raping?!" Gaivin flipped his charcoal hair, shaven to resemble a horse's mane, over his left shoulder indignantly. "He was as willing as they come."
Sain shrugged. "The body n' the mind are two different things boy. One day you'll learn." He shook his head as he left, closing the door behind him. Gavain listened to the steady sounds of his steel toed boots as he walked away, undoubtedly with Enox in tow.
The half-human flopped onto his bedding with a frustrated sigh, what a disappointment. "Raping," he laughed scornfully, picking up the reflective shard he kept next to his bed. He had stolen it from a mirror-an expensive item rarely found in common homes, that he had cursed to shatter. He examined his appearance. "Raping…" he repeated before pursing his lips in a mou of distaste. It hadn't seemed that he was forcing himself on the boy. Goddess knows his cock was certainly hard enough. He sighed again, pouting at himself in the mirror. He wasn't really going to curse Sain with an accident; the stables afforded him a bit of exercise and a chance to meet merchants and traders passing through from different lands. His mother told him that if he lost that job then he was going to be sold to the highest paying brothel. Bitch that she was. He smirked at himself, enjoying way it exaggerated the sharpness of his features, bringing the fae aspects of his face into sharper relief. Perhaps Sain would find that the next time he visited the brothel-for who else would sleep with the stable master? Bland bastard that he was-that his cock wouldn't rise to the occasion. Yes, that would do nicely. Gaivin set down the piece of mirror and let out of a deep breath, slipping into a meditative state. He focused on his feelings of frustration, lack of completion and anger at the older man and envisioned what he wanted. With a sharp slash, he released those feelings in a tangible whirl, sending out his misluck. He smiled and settled back into bed. If his sexual appetite wouldn't be satisfied, his hunger for mischief and misfortune would be.
End our introductory chapter! In which we met our hero...or at the very least main character. This will be a long, slow burn folks. plenty of magic and intrigue! What did Sain mean by bonding? Find out next time!