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Her freckles fucking sparkle.

Or they, like, shine, or some shit. Gold freckles. What the fuck.

What Beau really wants to know, as Reani grins at her over the whisky bottle, is where the freckles end. They’re on her face, and her arms, and they definitely go down her neck, and are liberally sprinkled over the tops of her breasts and… shit, Beau probably shouldn’t be staring quite so hard while Reani is looking right at her.

She forces her gaze back upwards, meet’s Reani’s eyes just for a second before Reani looks hard at the floor, and Beau thinks she might be… blushing? Ok, so Reani definitely noticed, but, you know, plus side, she doesn’t seem to mind. Beau can work with that.

Then Reani sidles over and starts rambling at her, and Beau’s suspicions are pretty definitely confirmed, so she doesn’t stop to think, she just pulls Reani in and kisses her.

Walking away, she puts her arm around Reani’s waist and keeps her close, hips bumping together, and she knows they’ve both had quite a bit to drink but she’s just buzzed, not, like, super drunk, and she’s pretty sure Reani’s the same.

Reani’s quiet while they walk, but when Beau glances at her she’s grinning. Beau notices she’s being steered a bit - round one corner, then another, and then there’s a nook - conveniently secluded but not gross or cramped - and Beau wonders if Reani scoped this out earlier, and she grins to herself.

And then Reani turns and kisses her. It’s soft, kind of tentative - hits the corner of her mouth first, then again with better aim. And after that she looks up but doesn’t quite meet Beau’s eyes, the colour high on her cheeks again.

“Hey, so, um,” Reani’s voice is half a murmur, her words fast, as though she’s trying to get them out before she swallows them back down. “Do you want to do this? Because you’re really pretty and I want to do this, but I don’t know if you want to do this? And...”

Beau grins lazily, and leans back against the wall. Every movement languorous, deliberate. She reaches out and hooks her finger into Reani’s belt, raises an eyebrow, lets her smile take on a feral edge, and then tugs Reani forward in a sudden, sharp motion. Reani stumbles and ends up in Beau’s waiting arms, and now she meets Beau’s eyes, her own a little wide.

Beau’s really fucking good at lying to other people, she does it all the time, and she has it down to a damned art. She lies to herself too, and she hates that, hates that she needs that, but she thinks she’s getting better at being able to tell what’s a lie and what’s the truth. Beau isn’t lying to Reani about how much she wants to fuck her - Reani’s hot, and nice in a weird, intense kind of way, and could probably kill Beau if she really wanted to, and that’s honestly even fucking hotter. So, yeah, Beau’s not lying about that, not to Reani, and not to herself.

There’s a snag of pain in Beau’s right elbow as she runs her hand over Reani’s ass, a small reminder of their dragon encounter that’s taking its sweet time to heal. It grounds her, sharp and sweet, here in this moment. Beau relishes Reani’s little gasp, the way she leans into Beau, her lips slightly parted.

When Beau kisses her again, Reani sighs, like she’s been waiting for this for days. The sound is more intoxicating than the whisky was earlier. Reani kisses with the same enthusiasm that she fights, but Beau can give as good as she gets, and the little noises Reani makes into her mouth spur her on.

Beau wasn’t lying to Keg either, but she might have been lying to herself more back then. She was hurting, when she fucked Keg, there in that awful place. She hurt so much, in those shitty days, that she didn’t know what to do with it. What to do with herself. So she fought, and she fucked, and all the pain and pleasure and pure physicality of it took the place of all that hurt, and gods, it was so fucking good.

She’s hurting now. She’s not lying to herself about that this time. Yasha’s gone. They couldn’t save her. Beau couldn’t save her. And now Beau is hurting. But there has been pain, and there has been almost-dying a couple of times, and there has been the solid smack of her fists against anything that she could catch with them… and those all help. And Reani helps. Beautiful and sparkling bright and strong as hell, every movement demanding Beau’s attention, her mind and body’s presence, here and now.

Beau kisses Reani again, deep and full until she feels like she can barely breathe, and Reani’s hands have found their way to Beau’s midriff, playing over the bare skin there, and Beau shivers. When she pulls away it’s only because she hears footsteps, somewhere not as far away as she’d like, and that’s enough to remind her that she doesn’t want to get caught fucking in a public place, especially when she doesn’t know the rules around here so well.

The next bit of the walk is slower than Beau would like - though, hell, a dead sprint would be slower than Beau would like right now - and at least it’s punctuated by fumbling, laughing kisses. They make it back to… Reani’s room? Beau’s room? Someone’s room anyway, and there’s no one else in it, so it’s theirs now. Beau latches the door behind them, and pushes Reani towards the nearest bed. It’s narrower than is ideal, but it’ll do.

Reani collapses backwards, and her giggles fade into a dark-eyed stare. She reaches out to Beau, cups Beau’s cheek with one hand, then slips it around the back of Beau’s head to ruffle the short hairs at the nape of her neck and coax her forward into a deep kiss.

Beau breaks away long enough to straddle Reani’s hips. Reani shifts under Beau’s weight and Beau tenses her thighs to hold her in place, and looks down at her, grinning. “You ok there?” Beau knows it comes out rough, and there’s a hitch in her voice as Reani’s hips roll under her again.

“Oh yes,” Reani tells her. ”I’m excellent.” Beau notices how much less drunk Reani seems now - her words perfectly clear, her focus back in place and locked entirely onto Beau.

Her wriggling draws Beau’s attention down from her face, following the lines of golden freckles, down to where the tops of her breasts show above the neckline of her dress, heaving delightfully as she breathes. Beau leans down and kisses along the line of each, burying her face for a moment in the deep valley between them, licking at the warm skin she finds there. Reani lets out a little gasp, and from here Beau fancies she can hear Reani’s racing heartbeat, matching pace with her own.

Seized with the need to see whether Reani’s freckles do go all the way down, Beau sets about divesting her of her clothing. Leather boots and leather armour and fiddly belts and by the time she gets down to the white dress, she’s impatient, but then there’s Reani, stark naked beneath her, and Reani is magnificent.

She cups her hands around Reani’s incredible breasts, enjoying the full weight of them, following the path her hands take with her mouth, nipping here and sucking there. The freckles, it turns out, cover her whole body, dusted over her breasts and peppered across her stomach and thighs. Beau draws constellations between them with her tongue, working her way, slowly, gradually downwards, over Reani’s soft belly and the rounds of her hips.

Reani’s breathing has sped up, and she starts making delightful little noises as Beau nears the thick nest of white curls between her legs. Beau keeps on taking her sweet time, using a free hand to spread Reani’s legs just enough, while kissing Reani’s inner thighs. She finds freckles even there - little hidden ones that she gives their due attention. A sucking kiss leaves a dark red mark on Reani’s skin that Beau kind of hopes will be a bruise in the morning.

Reani’s panting by now, and she bucks her hips up towards Beau, but Beau places the flat of her hand on Reani’s hipbone and holds her down. Reani lets out a brief, breathless peal of laughter.

“Beau,” she gasps, as Beau nips at her again, teeth dragging over velvety soft skin. “Come on, Beau…”

Beau grins up at her, and stills.

“Beau.” There’s a whining note in Reani’s voice now - it’s almost what Beau wants from her, but not quite. She nuzzles at Reani, her nose brushing against hair, and then pulls back, and Reani makes a long, low sound. Beau waits.

“Please, Beau, gods, please…” Reani sounds desperate now, straining against the hand Beau holds her with, though clearly keeping herself in check as best she can. “Beau. Please.”

That’s it, that’s as long as Beau can hold out.

She settles herself properly between Reani’s thighs, with Reani’s long legs thrown over Beau’s shoulders. Beau parts Reani’s curls with her free hand and goes in, a long, broad stroke with the flat of her tongue and Reani practically yells. Deeply satisfied with that reaction, Beau sets about exploring, figuring out what Reani likes, and what doesn’t work so well. Beau has always been blessed with being a quick study when she cares about the task at hand, and she really fucking loves this.

It also helps that Reani is very expressive about what she wants, and extremely, delightfully effusive when Beau gets it right. And she smells amazing and tastes even better, and fuck, the sounds she makes with Beau’s tongue circling her clit… Beau can feel her own body reacting and finds she’s pressing her own legs together, subconsciously seeking friction. She thinks briefly, longingly, about putting her hand down her own pants while she’s at it, but that would be a distraction, and she wants to give Reani her full focus.

Anyway, her spare hand is otherwise occupied - she keeps it firm on Reani’s hip, holding her down when Reani tries to cant up towards Beau’s mouth, when she fights for more contact when Beau’s touch is light. Beau isn’t having any of it - she’s got this down to a godsdamned fine art form by now.

Reani’s been saying Beau’s name for a while now, a gasping litany, interspersed with the occasional curse, but she starts to trail off, the words replaced with high-pitched whimpers and moans. Beau keeps her rhythm and picks up the pressure, no holds barred now, messy and intense and… there. Reani gives an incredibly gratifying wordless shout when she comes, and Beau can feel the shudders running through her.

She slows, gentles, lets Reani ride out the length of it, then lifts her head enough to see Reani, eyes closed, head thrown back against the pillow, all her white-blonde hair haloed out around her face. Reani takes several deep, shaky breaths before she opens her eyes to look back at Beau.

“Wow,” Reani says, and her tone is made entirely of radiant, simple joy. “Wow, Beau.”

Beau smirks and wipes her mouth and chin with the back of her hand. “Not my first time.”

Reani laughs, bright as a bell, and sits up, freeing Beau from beneath her legs. “Yeah, yeah, I get it, you’re a stud. Come here.”

Beau is up arrow-quick, but is taken off guard when Reani grabs her with a hand on each hip and pulls her into place astride Reani’s lap again, this time crushed against all the incredible naked softness of her. The strength of her grip is a forceful reminder of all the awesome power that lurks beneath her cheerful, hot-as-hell exterior, and Beau’s brain goes deliciously fuzzy when she considers it.

Reani kisses Beau, deep and hungry and enthusiastic, and Beau knows she must be able to taste herself on Beau’s lips. She slides her hands around to Beau’s ass and pulls her in as close as she can, and Beau makes a little involuntary noise into Reani’s mouth, and presses herself closer still.

There’s a layer of fabric between them, and Reani is obviously even less into that than Beau is. Still kissing, she yanks the bottom of Beau’s shirt up, then grabs her wrists and holds them in one hand, tugging her into a better place to get the shirt over her head. The sudden movement drags on a half-healed muscle in Beau’s shoulder, and Beau breaks the kiss and lets out a little hiss of pain through her teeth.

Reani stops dead. “Are you ok?”

“Yeah, yeah,” Beau shucks the shirt and tosses it over her shoulder, all her thoughts taken up with wanting to feel her own skin against Reani’s, with wanting Reani’s mouth on her newly bared tits.

“You sure, Beau?” Reani asks again, not so easily deterred. “I don’t want to hurt you.”

Beau tries to get the reassurances out fast. “Yeah, I’m ok. Jester and Cad’s magic fixed the worst of it. Just a bit stiff still.” She rolls her shoulders, takes a deep breath. “I kind of, uh, kind of like it, anyway, you know. It feels good.”

Reani’s eyes widen just a little, and she grins. “Ok, cool. Good to know.” She kisses the side of Beau’s neck, then just above her collar bone, then, like she could read Beau’s mind, leans down and lavishes attention on Beau’s breasts, first one, then the other, her mouth hot and her tongue and teeth just fucking perfect.

Beau squirms and lets out a stream of colourful language when Reani bites down just hard enough to leave a mark.

Reani, meanwhile, unfastens Beau’s pants, and Beau has to get up on her knees to help Reani pull them down over her hips. The pants are skintight, and no amount of monk training makes taking them off look smooth, but they manage nonetheless and pants and underwear both end up on the floor, with Beau settled back into place astride Reani’s lap.

Reani kisses her hard and trails her hand down Beau’s stomach to cup between her legs. Beau moans and grinds down against Reani’s palm, and knows Reani must already be able to feel how wet she is. She thinks for a moment that Reani might hold out on her, make her beg the way she did Reani, and Beau doesn’t know if she can take that right now.

But then Reani slides one finger easily inside Beau, and follows it with another, and Beau buries her face in the curve of Reani’s shoulder, her breath coming harsh and fast. Reani moves, deep inside Beau, and her palm, still firm against Beau’s clit, moves too, and the combination feels incredible. Beau finds her hips moving of their own accord, keeping pace with Reani’s rhythm, and fuck, fuck, that feels so fucking good, her whole body hums with it.

Reani’s other hand has made its way to the back of Beau’s head, holding her in place. She laces her fingers through Beau’s hair, and then tightens her grip, just enough that the resulting, stinging pain raises goosebumps all down Beau’s body and Beau whimpers, all her earlier composure lost and forgotten.

Beau digs her nails into Reani’s back reflexively as she feels all her muscles tensing, the swirling heat centred on Reani’s fingers inside her building and heightening. She thinks Reani adds another finger, or maybe it’s two, she can’t quite tell but it hovers just on the razor-sharp edge of pain and pleasure. She’s moving faster now, and then faster still, and she can hear the wet sounds of herself against Reani’s hand, and her own pulse thundering in her ears, her world narrowing down to a pinpoint focus.

When she comes, her cry is muffled in Reani’s neck, and she clings to Reani as the waves of it rush through her, as she feels herself tremble and shake.

It’s a long moment before she can gather herself to move. She sits in Reani’s lap, with Reani’s fingers now still inside her, and she breathes. She feels Reani’s other hand release her hair and drift down to stroke her back, whisper-soft.

Eventually, Reani slides her fingers out of Beau, and Beau makes a tiny, helpless sound at the loss. Reani shifts down in the bed, bringing Beau with her, until she’s lying on her back, with Beau splayed on top of her, boneless.

Beau manages to lift her head just enough to see Reani lick the taste of Beau from her own fingers, and despite her satisfaction, a little shiver of want goes through her at how good Reani looks.

“How’re you doing there, Beau?” Reani asks her after a bit, and Beau can hear the smile in her voice.

Beau’s reply comes out dreamy and distant. “Dope. Good. Yeah. I’m good. That was dope.”

And Reani laughs. Beau could really get used to the sound of Reani’s laugh.

Beau has left a lot of people behind her in her time. Mostly they’ve been fine with it. Mostly she’s been fine with it too. She knows she’s going to leave Reani behind too, and that she’ll be fine with that, and so will Reani. Reani’s whole life is here, it’s not like she’d want to come with them or anything, Beau’s sure.

She considers though, that this might be the first time that she’s left someone with such as easy way to come back. With one of Caleb’s spells, she could be back here in minutes. Any time. From anywhere. It’s a weird fucking thought, and she doesn’t really know what to do with it, so she leaves it well enough alone.

Anyway, Reani’s looking at her with unmistakable desire now, and Beau’s pretty sure she could go another round. You know, if Reani wants to and all. She grins and goes in for an ardent kiss, ensuring she makes her own intentions obvious.

When, quite some time later, they’re finally done for the night, both utterly satiated and on the edge of sleep, Beau finds she’s suddenly aware of a faint chill in the room.

“Cold?” Reani asks her, the word half a yawn.

Beau almost denies it, but a shiver betrays her. “I guess,” she says.

Reani smiles. “Don’t worry, I can fix that. Check this out.”

And Reani transforms into some kind of wolf, enormous and covered in a thick, soft layer of dark brown fur. Fur which, Beau is amused to note, has a distinctly golden sheen. She also still has a halo. Yeah, definitely the sneakiest undercover vigilante there has ever been.

Beau cuddles up to the Reani-wolf, who tucks herself around Beau like a big, cosy blanket.

When they wake the next day, Beau will be wrapped around Reani’s humanoid form again, their arms and legs all tangled together. She wonders if it’ll be awkward, staying the whole night, both of them being there in the morning, when some kind of farewells will have to be made.

Beau can’t bring herself to worry about it too much though, and she doesn’t actually want to leave Reani sleeping here alone. She thinks that’s probably some kind of personal growth right there, and lets herself feel a bit proud.

Tomorrow she’ll hurt again.Tomorrow the Nein will carry on with this crazy world-saving shit they’ve got themselves tangled up in. Tomorrow she’ll find some other way to cope. She’s getting really fucking good at that now. She’ll lose herself in a fight, or a puzzle, or throwing herself bodily into whatever’s in front of her.

Tonight, though, she’s warm and content and, for a while at least, her mind is quiet. Peaceful.

Beau falls asleep.