Ha-ha Ha Ha! Ha-ha Ha Ha!
The sisters of Immaculate Soul dance on a beach in shapeless brown dresses and bare feet, singing their high praises, chants, and pleas to the elements. Queen Danielle stands in the center of their dance, pacing before a rising fire. She’s prepared to accept a male soul into her womb with her new husband, King Barasa Crow Dumisani. This bedding ceremony existed in his family since the birth of creation, and if successful, a new soul would breathe life the next day and grow to become a mighty ruler.
“Every male was born this way in the Dumisani family, Barasa himself. This is very important to him.” Danielle said as her handmaid, Amelia, leads her to a sprawling circular bed dressed in snow silk and cloudy pillows below the stars. “This is where it will happen. It’s all beautiful, isn’t it?” They look over at a massive, elegantly decorated tent. Low lit orbs of light float around inside, dancing around the exotic, colorful flowers and another bed drenched in black silk. Fine food and drink are carefully arranged, and soft rugs line the ground.
“It is.” Amelia said, helping Danielle onto the bed. “I’ve read it doesn’t hurt much either, after the first few seconds.” She unties Danielle’s sandal straps. She steps out of them into warm sand. “I’m so happy for you, my queen. I know you’ll create a beautiful soul.”
Danielle smiles, “Thank you.” Amelia sheds her crimson robe, revealing Danielle’s body for the king. He sits in the distance drinking her nude form in—she hoped, since he showed little interest in her. He gave most of his time to Aeterna and the rule, not women.
Through the flames Danielle finds Barasa’s scowl and smiles gently; she wants to love him and hopes he can love her. He looks away at the sisters still dancing and praying merrily. Danielle notices their hair is protected and hidden under their hair wrap. They’re odd and hopeless. Uncertain of their religion, Danielle knew she’d have to learn as Queen, to fit in a place unknown to her.
“Begin!” Barasa raises his glass of black wine, signaling to move things along.
Our king watches, someone whispers as Danielle approaches the fire. Blinding orange-gold strips of rage climb the sky. She steps forward, trembling. She holds her open palm to the flames and freezes—she looks away, biting her lip to puncture. Barasa’s eyes dance all over her. Her palm ignites into white flame; she withdraws it shakily from the fire and presses on her slender, empty belly, marking her skin with a fiery print.
STATE YOUR INTENT! A booming voice roars beneath the beach. Barasa rises. His eyes are large and wicked, watching Danielle closely.
“A creation of otherworldly power, a protector, a defender, a kind, understanding soul the likes of which we’ve never seen!” Danielle shouts and releases the grip on her belly. She sinks to the sand. Amelia helps her up, leading her back to the bed. “Well done,” she whispered.
Ha-ha Ha Ha! Ha-ha Ha Ha!
Look, above! someone shouts, drawing attention to a red-winged creature circling the ceremony bed. Barasa grins proudly. “It is time!” He shouts, approaching the bed. He’s intimidating and looms over Danielle as he disrobes. Curly black hair coats his broad, thick chest. Danielle’s eyes bulge in his presence. His entire body is heavy with muscle and absolute power. She’s a pebble married to a mountain. His callused palms stroke her shivering arms and reposition her on the bed to his liking. She squirms away from his gaze, but he turns her back to his unsettling, gruff expression. “My queen, will you give me a mighty son?”
“My king.” Barasa reminds her.
“Yes, my king.” Danielle repeats.
“You’re my wife now… That means I…” he trails off, stroking her long brown hair splattered over her heaving chest. Her belly is hot to the touch as his hands run across her slow-healing handprint. He climbs on top of her. His beard is rough and scratches against her face when his big lips kiss hers. His hands slide across her skin in a frenzy. “So soft…” he whispered, grazing his teeth across her neck. The sisters dance and chant to the rhythm of Danielle’s moans. She feels little but continues the charade to please him. While he shut his eyes, drowning in bliss, Danielle’s mind wandered, wishing for another…
Faint drums pound, a familiar hypnotic beat. She looks above to an emerald moon. Barasa grows within her, inching deeper. He kisses her mouth; Danielle looks past him with wide eyes, watching the dazzling emerald and gold specks of light float from a black sky.
Ha-ha Ha Ha! Ha-ha Ha Ha!
Danielle… what did you do?
She closes her eyes and kisses Barasa with a hard bite. He winces, growls, and moves with hard urgency inside her.
Come to me, Danielle.
Ha-ha Ha Ha! Ha-ha Ha Ha!
She opens again to September Velia, looking down at her. She smiles, looking into his familiar black eyes. His skin is bright emerald with gold shimmers throughout. Tears stream down her face. “I love you,” she whispered. “I’m sorry…” The men kiss Danielle deep. Their touches are conflicting. She sees September and Barasa’s faces fade in and out, both masked in emerald moonlight. She feels them switching inside her, unique and loving in their own ways. September’s black eyes are on Barasa’s face now. “Danielle, I returned for you.”
“I… I am married now. I can’t love you…” she cries, looking away. “It’s too late September.” His face fades away.
Painted in silent blackness, the night is still young when Danielle wakes. Barasa lies beside her asleep. His chest rises and falls slowly and peacefully. “Danielle…” a whisper floats in her ear.
He stands at the water’s edge, a beautiful nude, shimmering emerald man holding his hand out. She rises and joins him. He wraps his arms around her. “Why, Danielle?” He growls and hugs her again. Guilt silences her. “I returned like I promised—” He thinks for a moment, staring out at the waters. “I was a fool to leave you.” He shakes his head. “I can’t let go. I love you too much to let you go.” He takes her hands, staring at the massive ruby on her ring finger. “I will give you a mighty son. That way we’ll never part. He will be my anchor for this existence. I can be here for him, and you, or we can leave this place like we plan—”
“I cannot with you, September. Barasa will find out. He’ll come for you. He’ll murder any child we have.”
“He is only words. He cannot kill what we create.”
“It’s too late.” She strokes September’s warm cheek and runs her hands through his flowing, thick blue-brown hair. They melt into a kiss. “It’s too late, September… I can’t…”
“Come with me.” He kisses her again and holds her close. She squirms against his grasp, gives up, and kisses him back in a lustful panic.
“How did we find each other?” she whispers against his lips. September speaks in a tongue known only to them. Danielle cries and melts against his chest. He scoops her in his arms, carrying her below the water’s depths.
At dawn, Queen Danielle sits beside the water, drawing in the sand with one hand, and caressing her enlarged belly with the other. It glows beneath her touch. “You’ve done well, my Queen,” King Barasa Crow said, startling her from behind. His words are surprising and warm. He smiles.
Come with me, September called. Beneath the water, his hand slips away from her belly as she rises. He grabs her hand. Danielle squeezes it, as if to say goodbye, and releases… Barasa lifts her in his mighty arms, taking her away to deliver Aeterna’s Prince. Danielle… September stands alone, a silhouette in the rising sun watching her go. Resolut… She doesn’t look back.
Below, the D♡S drawn in the sand is taken with the waves. I love you, September said, hoping they hear his voice in their mind. I love you. He frowns, descending into the waters.
I love you…