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Ilse's Story by BL2K2003

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Ilse's Story by BL2K2003

Postby ma-comix » Wed Oct 19, 2016 2:38 pm

Note: I am not the author. I found this gem on an old machine and didn't feel it was right that the internet has gone without it for so long! One of my favorites about a priestess and her fertility ceremony... enjoy!

Ilse's Story
by BL2K2003

I
Dawn quietly crept over the east side of the Talerian Mountains, heralding the break of the most significant feast day the Talerian people had seen in over twenty years. Today was the spring equinox. They would give thanks for safe delivery from a bitter winter, the abundance of their village and the creation of all life. They would pray for the fertility of their lands and families. But most importantly, they would dedicate a new priestess to the goddess.
Cook fires were already burning and all the folk in the village except the very old and the very young had been up for hours preparing the feast which would in all likelihood continue for days. A carnival-like atmosphere pervaded the town as children too young to have experienced a day as grand as this one raced up and down the narrow streets, intent as much on having fun as they were on carrying out the various errands their elders had sent them on. Tantalizing spices mingled with the warm scent of baking bread and mouthwatering aroma of roasted meats. Someone was frying bacon with onions and potatoes and the scent fairly saturated the air in one section of town. Mulled wine simmered on every hearth as villagers young and old, rich and poor, gathered round to drink toast after toast to the health of their new priestess. As families gathered together and strode out towards the center of town, oldsters remarked on how there had never been such a grand Conception Day in all their years, probably in all of history. Children hopped up and down, tugging excitedly on their parents’ sleeves, impatient to begin the procession to the temple that would signal the official start to festivities.
Finally the entire village began to wind its way from the center of town up the wooded path, lanterns winking in the misty gloom of early dawn. The serpentine pattern wound its way along the side of the mountain, headed by a rider-less horse caparisoned in rich cloth and gold braiding, which was led by a tall figure completely draped in white. Behind these two strode a stately woman attired in a gown and cloak of deepest red, carrying a bundle in her arms. Her dark head was held high and her hips swayed seductively as she walked, but her blue eyes sparkled and her wide mouth smiled as guilelessly as a girl half her age. Behind her, in various states of dignity ranging from self-conscious pomp to outright scampering, were 13 youngsters. The smallest one, a blue eyed, blonde haired imp, was carried in the arms of his eldest brother. He squirmed in his sibling’s grasp and twisted himself around to face the back, gazing wide eyed at the never ending procession behind him. He forgot his manners and stuck out his tongue at his next youngest sister, who threw a furious glance at him in lieu of anything more lethal. He then settled down more comfortably, resting his small pointed chin on his brother’s strong shoulder as he sleepily wondered where his eldest sister was. Lulled by the warmth of his cloak and the gentle swaying motion, he soon fell into slumber, and strong arms wrapped more tightly around his little waist to hold him safely as the line made its way toward its final destination.
II
Weak sun crept over the ledge of the single high, narrow window that had been cut into the rough stone of the cavern wall. The cold, comfortless light of late winter cast a pale glance on the chamber within. The walls were hung with tapestries that portrayed scenes depicting the act of love, the miracle of birth and the warmth of hearth and home. Cushions, furs and blankets were neatly stacked along one wall. Thick rugs were strewn about, taking any chill out of the stone floor. The only obvious furnishing in the chamber was a raised platform in the center of the room, carved from a single massive piece of dark wood, elaborately chiseled with scenes reminiscent of the tapestries adorning the walls. The chamber was supplied with nearly a hundred beeswax candles, an extreme and rare luxury, although few were currently lit. Rush lights, also unlit, were set in sconces embedded in the stone walls at various points around the room. A dais, upon which stood a stone figure, was located in the back of the room. Near the entrance to the cavern was a large natural hot spring which provided warmth to the interior of the cavern. So hot was it, it had to be supplemented with the icy cold runoff that had been diverted from the mountain brook which flowed through the woodlands some hundred yards from the mouth of the cavern. This clear, cold water entered the hot spring from a channel cut into the rock at the floor of the cavern that widened out into a small pool before spilling into the steaming spring, providing easy refreshment and the gentle sound of splashing water for visitors. In a corner was a small fire pit, in the unlikely event that more warmth should be needed or should anyone have a desire to prepare food.
Dawn’s break went unnoticed and the room’s lone occupant continued her vigil at the dais, where she had been since nightfall the day before. Incense curled upward from braziers on either side of the stone figure and several candles, burnt almost down to their bases, illuminated the deity before which she was situated. The goddess’ head was canted to one side and turned slightly downwards, as if gazing with love upon her children. Her long, graceful arms wrapped around her gravid midsection, cradling the child within. Her bare breasts sat full and upright upon the mound of her belly. There was something both maternal and supremely sensual about the figure of Esmet, Goddess of Fertility and Love. She exuded the warmth of motherhood and the potent sexuality that is the state of pregnancy.
The supplicant at the dais sat cross legged before her goddess, breathing quietly, deeply engrossed in her meditation. A single long, thick, chestnut colored braid lay over one shoulder, golden highlights glinting in the waning glow of the candles. She appeared the epitome of tranquility, although her thoughts had remained unrelentingly jumbled throughout the vigil the night before. Her shift, made of soft, light wool, was slit to the hip on either side for comfort and exposed long, strong legs. Her hands sat folded lightly in her lap, one cupped within the other, palms up. Her feet were bare, as were her slender arms. Her eyes were closed and her lips moved in silent prayer.
“Mother Esmet, I pray for your guidance in the path that I am about to walk. I offer my body as a vessel for your children. May it be your will that many will be nurtured within my womb, to live and love and lead lives dedicated to your praise. I pray that the seed of my chosen mate will be strong and that the first fruit of my womb may be a girl child to carry on your divine plan when my days as priestess are finished.
I dedicate my life and the life of my mate to you from this day forward. May my people be sheltered in the love of the Eternal Mother.”
Ilse finished her prayers but maintained her pose of meditation. Her thoughts continued to race.
Am I ready for this task? She thought. Mother and Gran tell me I am. I have worked hard these last four months to prepare myself for this day and I have prayed to the Eternal Mother for guidance. Yet, I am frightened. What if I fail? What if I embarrass my chosen at the wedding feast? Oh Gods, what if I don’t conceive?
Of course she would conceive. There had never been a high priestess of Fertility that hadn’t conceived a child in over 15 generations since the keeping of records had begun. A girl child had been conceived in every instance and had been born to the high priestess roughly 9 months after the consummation of the mating ritual. Ilse was just irrationally terrified that she would be the first to fail. Her mother assured her that all the priestesses felt the same on the eve of their Conception Day. Elsbeth had held vigil in this very same cavern, the Shrine of the Sacred Womb, twenty one years previously, as had her own mother Lara, and countless generations before them. It was natural that Ilse should be nervous. After all, being daughter and heir to the high priestess was one thing. Assuming her role and duties was quite another.
Ilse de Lamrey was the first born daughter of the High Priestess of Fertility and Love. She had been reared to this position from the day she was born. Her mother Elsbeth, the current high priestess, had been life mate to the high priest Arran. As all life must have both male and female elements to thrive, the priestess must always have her priest at her side. Life and love cannot truly exist without the two elements working together. If a priestess’ chosen mate should die while she was still in her childbearing years, and an heir had not reached puberty, the priestess was required to choose another mate. If her first born daughter had reached childbearing age, the high priestess might choose to relinquish her position and assume that of Honored Mother, a highly respected position in the hamlet. Her guidance and wisdom would be sought by all and she took the lead in the important events of village life. Births, deaths, life bonding rituals, all were in her realm of duty. Ilse’s Gran Lara had been Honored Mother for as long as Ilse had been alive, having assumed the role upon Elsbeth’s ascension to the role of High Priestess. In any event, once the High Priestess was past her childbearing years, she handed her Priestess’s robes over to her eldest daughter, who would carry on her duties.
The position of High Priestess was a hereditary one. The position was always passed from mother to first born daughter. Should anything happen to the first born daughter, the second would assume her position, and so on. Priestess’ families tended to be large. Elsbeth had borne Arran fourteen children in 20 years as priestess. Ilse barely remembered a time in her youth when her mother wasn’t carrying a child, either in her belly or on her hip, sometimes both. Ilse had shared in the care of her younger siblings and as soon as she was old enough to understand and careful enough to assist, she attended almost all the births in the village as well.
Elsbeth’s youngest, Tyran, was born when Elsbeth was 43 years old. Tyran had been a large baby and entered the world backside first. It was a difficult birth and Elsbeth barely survived the ordeal. As she slowly recovered her strength, Ilse was left to care for Tyran, while Arran, Gran and the village at large helped with the other children. Tyran was very special to Ilse. She and Gran had brought Tyran into this life, and for the first six months of his existence, Ilse was his whole world and he hers. It wasn’t until Tyran entered her life that she fully grasped the monumental responsibility and the indescribable joy that awaited her as the future high priestess.
Tyran was now a sweet, if somewhat boisterous little boy of 4 who charmed everyone in his path. Blonde like his father, with cornflower blue eyes he inherited from his mother, he was tall for his age and full of energy. Elsbeth had fully recovered but had taken precautions to bear no more children. She continued to carry out her other duties diligently, giving her daughter a few more precious years of childhood before she must assume the mantle of High Priestess. The family had lived happily and somewhat uneventfully until the solstice of this past winter, when Ilse’s father Arran had suddenly succumbed to an ailment of the lungs. Although devastated by her loss, Elsbeth knew that Ilse must take up the reigns of her position and made plans to relinquish her priestess’s robes the following spring equinox. By celebrating Ilse’s Conception Day at the vernal equinox, Elsbeth knew the seed planted tonight in her daughter’s womb would begin to grow with the emerging spring shoots. As the grain began to swell in the warming soil of their countryside, so too would Ilse’s belly begin to swell with the next High Priestess. A child conceived in concert with the spring equinox was considered highly blessed. Elsbeth could ask no better for her first grandchild.
Arran had been in his 69th year, a full twenty two years Elsbeth’s senior. He had been chosen by the hamlet and Elsbeth herself as Elsbeth’s life mate for many reasons, but the one that stood out the most was his natural leadership ability. His quiet self assurance helped to keep the villagers calm in times of distress or emergency and his ideas were respected by all. He never proposed a thought or made a decision without first weighing all sides of the issue. And even though some of his mandates were unwelcome by a few, they were always respected, for they were certainly set forth for the greater good of the community. He was a good and wise man, and would be missed by many.
Ilse dragged herself back to the present, opening eyes the color of the ocean on a sunlit day. Their green-blue depths were in startling contrast to her dark chestnut hair and creamy skin, the irises rimmed all around in black, adding intensity to a gaze that was already passionate and intense. Right now, they were simply trying to adjust to the lit chamber, and she frowned in an attempt to focus her eyesight. In one fluid motion, she unfolded her legs and stood up, stretching her arms high above her head to relieve the stiffness in her spine. Bringing her arms down, she then ran her hands slowly down over her torso, as if in attempt to remember the slender shape that she was about to abandon. Palms curved, fingers slightly cupped, she held her breasts momentarily, memorizing how they fit into her hands, not too small, but not overly large either. Sweeping downwards, her hands felt her rounded hips, full of the promise of ripening womanhood. Moving from her hips, her hands came to rest on her belly, firm and flat. Today, it would swell with the ritual feasting that hailed her passage from maiden to priestess. Soon, it would swell with the child she hoped she would conceive tonight.
She had witnessed all of her mother’s pregnancies during the past twenty years, and remembered most of them. As High Priestess of Fertility, Elsbeth had worn the required raiment for her station at all official ceremonies. The low slung kilt of deep red and midriff baring short vest of the same color served to accentuate the swell of her belly and curve of her hips. Her gold chain of office was draped loosely around her hips and drew the eye to the child that grew safely tucked beneath her heart. As her pregnancies developed, the jeweled ring she wore as a symbol of her bond to her mate would be revealed from its hiding place deep within her navel to rest on the taut skin of her burgeoning abdomen. When at home Elsbeth often opted to wear a similar style, made of lighter materials, or during the long, cold Talerian winters, a warm, softly flowing gown that draped sensuously around her swelling curves. Ilse remembered her parents sitting together in the family’s hall, her father’s hand softly stroking her mother’s belly or gently probing for the feel of an elbow or foot. He was sometimes rewarded with a kick or jab and would laugh delightedly at the site of the ripple across Elsbeth’s skin, proclaiming this one or that one to be even more active than the previous one. As she grew older, Ilse also recognized the naked desire on Arran’s face as he watched Elsbeth work herbal oils into the tight skin of her belly to prevent stretch marks and to keep the tissue supple. He would take the oil from her hands and begin to use his own, slathering her midsection with the sweet smelling mixture. Tenderly, his large hands working in lazy circles, he would massage the swell, paying special attention to her jutting navel and lower abdomen. When he began gently toying with the ring which hung from the lower half of the stalk of her navel, Elsbeth would always breathlessly suggest they retire for the evening, leaving the room in a hurry and leaving Ilse in no doubt as to what they were planning on doing when they reached their own chambers.
Ilse was not untutored in the area of physical pleasures, although she was officially still a maiden. A priestess’ child grows up in an environment that celebrates the joy of two people deeply in love. While the act of love was a private thing, the concepts of sex and physical contact were not shunned or hidden from the eyes of children. Rather, the children were given answers to inevitable questions that were consistent with their own age levels and ability to comprehend. Theirs was a society who’s most prominent deity was one that celebrated life and love. No member of the community grew up ignorant of the facts of life.
When she was about fourteen, Ilse had begun to have desires of her own and brought her questions and feelings to her mother. Elsbeth explained that these feelings were natural and that her body was simply making itself ready to fully experience the sensuality of both adulthood and motherhood. She saw to it the Ilse was educated (at least theoretically) in the act of lovemaking. She learned which positions were most satisfying to each mate, and which were conducive to conception. She studied countless tomes depicting the act itself, the clever use of hand and tongue to stimulate, and treatises on how mutual respect and love were essential to complete fulfillment. Her favorite volume, however, was the one that detailed love between the two sexes while the woman was heavy with child. She poured over the tome again and again, wondering at the warm, tingling sensations she felt deep down at the bottom of her tummy as she gazed at page after page of illustrations depicting a heavily pregnant woman riding her mate as she would a horse, or lying on the edge of a bed, her back arched and high belly straining as her mate pushed his member deep inside her. There was something unspeakably sensual and primal about these pictures. They were full of the energy that all life is created from and the man’s unfettered worship of his mate’s gravid belly was both proof and celebration of the Goddess’s great goodness. Ilse noticed that the pages were very dog eared and worn. She was apparently not the only one to show a particular interest in this volume.
During the last four months, Ilse had spent the majority of her time preparing to take over her mother’s duties. She learned the proper way to conduct various rituals, and spent time with Gran learning some of her healing arts. She also began a regime designed to fill out her young body somewhat, and prepare it for the ritual feast of her Conception Day. As she maintained her daily routine of stretching and long walks, Ilse also began to eat large quantities of food at one sitting. This was to allow her stomach and intestines to stretch to the point where they would be able to sustain the vast amounts of food she would be fed on the day of her induction. The Conception Day feast officially lasted from sunup until sundown, although the townspeople tended to extend their celebrations for the next few days. Throughout the celebration day, the future High Priestess was stuffed continually with food and drink, and the result was a full and burgeoning belly, symbolic of the one that would soon be filled with the Goddess’s children. To gorge oneself like that without preparation could be dangerous, even fatal. And so the future High Priestess literally trained for the months preceding her induction. She drank large amounts of water at one sitting, and filled herself with grains and fibrous vegetables to achieve greater abdominal girth. Sweets in large amounts were plied and a wide variety of food was available on those days to tempt her to indulge in greater and greater proportions. At first Ilse, who was naturally quite slim, found this difficult to accomplish. Her belly ached and she couldn’t force herself to eat one more bite. With encouragement and patience, however, she soon began to stretch the limits of her skin. She even began to find it enjoyable. She loved the heavy, tight feeling of all that food sitting low in her belly and how swollen she felt after a large meal and several tankards of ale. She stared, fascinated, at her reflection in the looking glass, her tummy jutting out beneath her breasts, round and smooth and aching to be touched. She knew that this was but a foreshadowing of events to come and would smile to herself as she stroked her belly, thinking of the time in the near future when this would be a much larger swell and how she would have a mate to stroke it for her.
Despite her stuffing episodes, Ilse’s middle remained flat between times. Her youthful skin was resilient and her belly would always revert to its previous state, concave, firm and smooth. Her mother taught her the use of herbal oils to maintain the suppleness of her skin, promising her that if she applied these oils every day, whether pregnant or not, and continued with her regimen of stretching, she would never develop the red welts that often streaked the overburdened bellies of some of the townswomen. This method seemed to work for Elsbeth, for in twenty years of almost continual pregnancy, her skin remained clear and flawless, the slight puffiness of her lower abdomen the only testament to the fourteen children who had grown there.
Ilse’s thoughts transferred themselves to the subject of her future life mate. Of the four possible candidates that the hamlet had presented, Galeron had been Ilse’s clear choice almost from the beginning. His kindness and gentle manner reminded her of her father, although in looks he was vastly different. Where Arran had been a big, handsome blonde bear of a man, Galeron was dark and somewhat slender of build, with eyes the deepest blue she had ever seen. True, his dark sensitive looks sent her mind reeling back to the illustrations in the monastery library. She dreamed at night of his hands on her body, his lips on the skin covering the child they would make. Yet, for all her desire, Ilse knew him to be the right choice for her heart as well. Galeron was a scholarly man by nature, although he was physically fit and as capable of wielding a sword as any well trained soldier. He was also a gifted healer who spent a great deal of time seeing to the physical and emotional welfare of the village.
Galeron had come to Talerian from the west side of the mountains, where he was the third child of the High Priestess in a region called Cordula. The Cordulan people were distant relations to the Talerians, having a common ancestry dating back hundreds of years. The Cordulans were allies to the Talerians and the two regions shared common beliefs and practices. Galeron had settled in Ilse’s home village some five years ago, quickly becoming a favorite among the families who came to him regularly for healing herbs and potions, as well as his sage advice on health matters. He was also fond of knowledge in general and spent a good deal of his time sharing ideas with young people eager for a taste of the world beyond their little hamlet. He had a large library of books which he regularly lent out, with strict instructions to handle carefully and return promptly when finished, so that others may share their wonderful secrets.
Ilse had only seen Galeron angry one time. It was on a bitterly cold day two months ago, a time when the two were still becoming acquainted with each other. They had just left a small dwelling in the poorest section of the village, having brought old Marda some broth and soft bread, along with infusions to aid her breathing. The poor dear had no family left to her and when she came down with a sickness of the lungs and throat, she was hard pressed to care for herself. The village did what it could for her, checking in on her and stoking the fire in her small hearth. Someone would always leave a little wood stacked outside her dwelling, and there were frequently pots of broth or pottage left on the doorstep. Such was the way of the Talerians. Care and You Shall Be Cared For.
They were leaving Marda’s dwelling and stepping out into the dark, narrow alleyway outside, when they came upon a boy hurling rocks at a bedraggled puppy, no more than eight or ten weeks old. He had the animal cornered and was taunting it as he chucked whatever he could find in its direction.
As Ilse gasped in dismay, Galeron shot out into the alley and grabbed the boy by the collar of his dirty, thin shirt, throwing him hard up against the outer stone wall of Marda’s home. Fury transformed his handsome face into that of a raging beast as he held the boy’s throat and threatened to send him straight to the depths of hell for abusing an animal. Ilse ran and scooped up the pup, tears streaming down her white face as she checked for any serious damage. Trembling as though his little body would break, the pup whimpered and then licked her face as if to stop the tears from flowing. Aside from a small abrasion on his right flank, the little fellow was alright. Sobbing with relief, Ilse looked up to find Galeron holding the terrified boy against the wall, chest heaving as he tried to calm his rage. By now, he could see the boy was about ready to pass out from fright, too scared to make a sound or even cry. Loosening his tight grip, Galeron demanded to know where the boy lived. The boy mumbled something unintelligible, head hanging, tears finally beginning to stream down his face. When pressed further, the boy repeated himself and it was then that they came to understand that he was an orphan, with no home to call his own. His family had been Wanderers, the transient group of full time peddlers and part time horse stealers with loose familial ties and looser morals that roamed the lands of both Taleria and Cordula, among others. He had lost both his parents to disease and his clan had thrown him out, seeing one so young as no more than competition for food and warmth, both of which were hard to come by in the long mountain winters. He had found his way to the hamlet and survived by eating whatever he could steal or scrounge from refuse piles. Primed by the cruel society he grew up in, he saw the little dog as a potential threat to his survival and was attempting to scare it off by throwing rocks at it.
Galeron’s fury dissolved as quickly as it had begun. What kind of monsters would drive out a small boy of eight or so to fend for himself in the woods? He released his grip on the boy, who would have bolted but for Galeron’s firm hand on his shoulder. Galeron apologized for scaring him so, but he needed to understand that the puppy was as lost and frightened as he was. The little boy sniffed and nodded, understanding dawning on his grubby face. Galeron then gently asked if he would like to go somewhere warm and have something to eat. His grasp was now one of gentleness as it guided the child towards Ilse.
Ilse knew right then and there that she was irrevocably in love with Galeron. There would be no other candidates for her mate. She had found the one. Holding the little dog to her heart with one hand, she held out her other one to Galeron. Galeron took the proffered hand, his deep blue eyes responding to the warmth in hers, before he released it and scooped the urchin into his arms, wrapping his cloak around them both for warmth. Their little party then set off for the keep, where Ilse’s family and the temple retainers all lived. There were literally dozens of children running around their home. There was always room for one more little boy. Ashran, he said his name was. The puppy settled contentedly in Ilse’s arms, his wet nose burrowed deeply into the neck of her cloak. She had rarely been without him since that day. His name was Shadow, because that’s exactly what he was, Ilse’s shadow.
Since that day, Ilse and Galeron had made it understood that they would be life bonded come the Equinox. The Goddess had sent Galeron to Ilse and this Priestess would not waste such a precious gift.
Today was the Equinox, her Conception Day. It was time to step forth and begin her ascent to womanhood and to the exalted position of High Priestess of Fertility and Love. Ilse dropped her hands to her side, closed her eyes for one brief moment, and headed towards the entrance of the cavern and to her new life.
II
Her mother greeted her at the mouth of the cavern.
“Goddess’ blessings, daughter.” Elsbeth touched her forehead, heart and abdomen in the ritual greeting.
“Goddess’ blessing, Mother.” Ilse returned the ritual greeting, and then gave up all pretense of formality and threw her arms around her mother, holding her close and seeking the familiar warmth of her loving embrace.
Elsbeth held her eldest daughter close to her, stroking her hair and giving her the reassurance that only human contact can. After a moment, she held Ilse at arms length and searched the ocean depths of her daughter’s eyes.
“What ails you, Darling?” She caught her daughter’s ice cold hands and gently rubbed them between her own. It was damp and cold here at the entrance to the cavern. No place for a girl clad only in a sleeveless shift. “Ilse, you’re shaking. Let’s go back into the shrine. We can talk there while we make you ready. Everyone will wait for us”. Indeed they would. It was part of the celebration for the villagers and Priestess’s family to wait outside the entrance to the shrine, a slight distance away, for the old and new Priestesses to emerge from the cavern in their ceremonial finery, some hour or so hence. The crowd had already broken up into small groups, spreading leather tarps on the frozen ground and laying out baskets of food. Skins of spiced wine and ale were passed around and some folk had actually built small fires, which dotted the hillside and provided warmth for the merrymakers. Elsbeth’s brood mixed freely with the villagers, and the smaller children darted from group to group, shrieking as they played a game of Catch Me Quick. When tired, they plopped down on some accommodating lap to be absorbed into the circle of blanket and arms. There they sat, eyes round and shining, safe among friends who counted them as their own. Galeron conversed easily with the village elders and Gareth, who had lost his grip on the squirming Tyran and given up, although he watched the little boy out of the corner of his eye as he ran to Cook’s side, no doubt wheedling his way into another treat.
Elsbeth and Ilse ventured back into the cavern, where steam from the hot spring warmed the room. Elsbeth put her bundle down and turned to Ilse.
“Now, my dear, tell me what’s the matter. Are you frightened? It’s quite alright, you know, to be a little afraid of the future”.
“Oh, no, Mama, I’m not really frightened, just tired and nervous. What if I don’t conceive?” Ilse got right to the point. It wasn’t like her to beat around the bush. A trait her mother shared. Elsbeth smiled as she took off her own cloak and then unwrapped the bundle, taking out toiletries, a beautiful gown of creamy white, sheer as gossamer, and a long, warm woolen cloak of the same color, accented with threads of gold and silver, gold braiding at hem and sleeves.
“Ilse, dear, you will conceive” She continued her work, filling a bucket with the hot water from the spring and setting it next to a small depression in the floor near the wall. There, a channel ran alongside the wall and out to the mouth of the cavern. “It is the destiny of the High Priestess. You’ll know when the moment comes. We all do.” Said as simply as that. “You should enjoy this day. Now come, let’s get to work”.
Twisting her long braid high up on her head and securing it with a pin handed to her by Elsbeth, Ilse stripped off her shift and descended the rough stone steps into the heat of the spring. A sigh escaped her as she gave in to the relaxing warmth of the water. Tension eased from her body and she was content to soak up to her neck as she listened to her mother’s description of Tyran’s latest misdemeanor. It seems that last evening he stole a berry pie while it cooled on the kitchen tables. Cook caught him red handed (and red faced, as it were), with what was left of the pie. But being Tyran, four years old and unrelentingly charming, Cook merely scolded him mildly, shaking her finger at him and proclaiming that it was his own fault if he got a big old bellyache. He did not, much to Cook’s chagrin and his mother’s relief.
Ilse climbed up out of the hot spring and moved over to the bucket. Her mother handed her soap and a sea sponge, and when she was done washing her front half, scrubbed her back for her while she rinsed off with the warm water from the bucket. Ilse leaned into her mother’s strokes, sighing contentedly.
“Mama, do you think Galeron will do this for me in the future? I so love having my back scrubbed”. Her head swung down and her chin lolled against her chest as Elsbeth poured more hot water over her back to rinse the fragrant soap from her skin.
“I should think so,” Elsbeth replied. “You most likely won’t even have to ask him. You will know instinctively what pleases him and he will know what pleases you. It was that way with your father and I.” Another bucket of hot water poured over Ilse. “You both will develop a strong sense of each other. You’ve begun to already. I watch the two of you together. You anticipate each other’s needs and communicate through touch. You were meant for each other, Ilse. Not everyone is so blessed.” Elsbeth handed her daughter a thick, warm cloth to dry off with. Wrapping the large strip of cloth around her body, Ilse smiled at her mother.
“You’re right, Mama. I feel as though we have known each other forever. The Goddess is good to me.” Finished with toweling off, Ilse held the soft, thick material in front of her, inhaling its clean fragrance, as her mother began to work scented oil into the skin on the back side of her body. Elsbeth finished with the back and turned her daughter around to face her. She continued to rub the oil into Ilse’s skin.
As she spread the oil onto Ilse’s belly, Elsbeth reminded her, “Don’t forget, Ilse. Every day, and your skin will not be marred with the marks of childbearing”. Ilse wrinkled her nose at the unnecessary reminder but nodded all the same.
Next, Elsbeth unbraided Ilse’s hair and brushed it until it shone burnished golden brown. The waves rippled down to her waist, thick and fragrant with the scent of lavender. She set a circlet of thin gold around Ilse’s brow to hold the curtain of hair away from her face and then held up the gown for Ilse to put on. Made of the finest linen shot through with threads of silver and gold, it fell in pleated folds to the ground, hugging her curves closely. The gown was so sheer it was almost transparent. Ilse blushed at its revealing style. The plunging neckline outlined the curves of her breasts, her nipples clearly showing through the fine fabric. The pleats accentuated the curve of her hips and buttocks. It would mold to her growing belly as the day progressed and she consumed greater and greater quantities of food. It was sheer sensuality. Ilse knew she had better get used to it fast, for this would be her life from today onward. It wouldn’t take long, she decided with a grin. She liked it already. A pair of soft kid slippers and dark ruby pendant finished the ensemble. She twirled in a circle for her mother, the gossamer material floating around her like a cloud, its silky softness caressing her warm skin.
“Oh my dear, you are lovely”, Elsbeth held her daughter at arm’s length. “Your Galeron is a lucky man.”
“It is I who am lucky.” Ilse said quietly. “I only hope our love is as strong as yours and Papa’s”. She remembered how very happy her parents had always been together and wondered if she would have such fortune.
“It is hard work, marriage, and you will have the duties of High Priestess to uphold. Still, if you work as hard at your love as you do at your calling, you will be happy, Ilse.” Elsbeth turned away so that Ilse would not see the tears welling in her eyes. There wasn’t a day that went by that she didn’t long for her beloved Arran. There was a void in her soul that could not be filled without him in her life. True, there was much to live for; her children, her village, the sheer joy of rising on a summer morning. But there would always be an ache that could not be appeased, and she felt it most keenly on this day when their first born daughter assumed the role she had been born to play. She made a silent prayer to the Goddess for the safe keeping of her husband’s soul as she unfolded the cloak and brushed off some nonexistent dust before turning to Ilse with a bright smile. “I am so proud of you, Ilse. You will make a fine Priestess. Now, let’s walk out together, you and I. Your husband is waiting”. And your destiny, she added silently. Closing the cloak with a ruby clasp, Elsbeth gave her daughter a kiss on either cheek. Ilse clasped her mother’s hands and brought them to her own lips for a kiss before taking one of them and heading out to her future for the second time that day.
III
Galeron was deep in a conversation on oversea trade relations that he really had no interest in. Oswald of Karth, his heavy jowls quaking, was pontificating upon the evils of the Denobian sea traders. “Ha, more like Denobian Pirates, if you ask me. They’ll rob you of every bit of goods you have and then charge you for the privilege”. He took a deep breath to continue his favorite subject and Galeron winced, expecting the seams of the man’s tunic to burst under the strain of his considerable girth. Miraculously, the fabric held and Oswald continued, completely unaware of debatable status of his clothing. ”Why, just last month, I was forced to pay 1200 Marks to those thieves to ship my cargo to West Venaria. Outrageous! I” – His tirade was cut short by a cheer erupting from the crowd nearest the entrance to the cave.
Galeron looked up and caught his breath. Ilse stood arm in arm with her mother, a vision in white and gold, her rich brown mane glinting in the sunlight. They made quite a picture, those two. Ilse in her cream and gold, Elsbeth in her deep red, her dark hair framing her face. Ilse would soon adopt that crimson herself. Today she wore white to symbolize her purity of purpose as she made her vows to the Goddess and her mate. Tomorrow she would don the deep crimson of the office of High Priestess, symbolizing the blood of life that flows through the veins of all living creatures.
Leaving Oswald’s side, he handed his horse’s reins over to Gareth, and strode the 20 or so yards that separated him from his bride, never taking his eyes from her face. His heart was racing as he reached them and he took a couple of deep breaths in an attempt to steady his shaking hands before offering them to Ilse. She noticed his slightly trembling grasp and squeezed his hands gently, her mouth turning up in that lopsided grin of hers that made his heart lurch. Elsbeth noticed the exchange and favored them both with a grin of her own of before addressing the assembly in front of them.
“People of Taleria.” Her voice rang out over the crowd, strong and husky, steel edged in velvet. “Today I complete my journey as High Priestess of Fertility and Love. I have served you with joy these last 20 years, rejoicing with you over births and bonding rituals, sorrowing with you at the passing of your loved ones. These have been my greatest pleasures. You are all my beloved family”
“We love you too, Your Grace!” Someone yelled from the crowd and was rewarded with an elbow in the ribcage. Elsbeth smiled.
“My time as Priestess is ending. I will still be with you, indeed even more so than previously, as I will be assuming the mantle of Honored Mother. I rejoice that I will have more time to spend among you, my cherished friends and family.
My daughter Ilse is your new Priestess. Today she will be bonded to her mate, Galeron, and Goddess willing, his seed will quicken and grow. Ilse is young, but wise and capable of all the office of Priestess may demand of her. I ask you to welcome her and love her as you have loved me these past twenty years.”
A loud cheer went up from the crowd. Ilse and Galeron exchanged glances and then beamed at the crowd, joined hands raised high over their heads.
“I give you Ilse, High Priestess of Fertility and Love, and her Life Mate, Priest Galeron!”
The crowd went wild, throwing objects into the air, some hugging in semi-drunken exuberance. Tyron jumped up and down, up and down, shouting “Ilsey, Ilsey, Ilsey!!!”, completely unaware of the significance of the event but thrilled to see his big sister the center of attention.
Galeron and Ilse made their way through the crowd to the beautifully caparisoned horse which Gareth held. Galeron mounted the big bay stallion and Gareth gave his sister a brief hug before handing her up to sit in front of Galeron. They set off towards the village at a walk, the whole crowd accompanying them.
“I don’t know about you, but I’m starving”, Ilse whispered under her breath. Galeron laughed, his breath teasing the hair at the nape of her neck. “What?” She challenged. You haven’t been stuck in a cave all evening and night with nothing but water to drink. I’ll bet you were sampling all of the feast preparations” She jabbed him, not too harshly, in the ribs. “Doesn’t feel like you’re starving”.
“ Don’t worry, Love, you’ll have plenty to eat soon enough. By the time the sun sets this evening, you’ll be so full of food that even water will be too much to consider ingesting.” Galeron had been present at his eldest sister’s induction. She had consumed so much, her belly had swelled up like a summer melon under her gown. She hadn’t wanted to eat for days afterward. The thought of such taut ripeness being his to caress this night brought an ache to his groin. He adjusted himself in the saddle a little so that Ilse wouldn’t feel the hardness in his breeches. He forced himself to think of other things. He changed the subject.
“ You didn’t see Alais this morning, did you?” His eyes searched the crowd for sight of Ilse’s sister. “She’s been with that young border patrol officer ever since we arrived at the temple. Marek, I think his name is. From Captain Brek’s squad.” He spotted them and pointed in their direction. Alais and her young suitor, a tall fellow with red gold hair were walking at the outer edge of the crowd, meandering in and out of the tall pine trees that edged the wide trail up the mountainside. He was guiding Alais by the elbow and laughing, at one of her scandalous stories no doubt. Alais disengaged her elbow and, turning her head coquettishly to one side, slipped her hand into the crook of his arm. Her fair hair curled softly around her pixie face and she turned the full force of her flirtatious charm on him as she pretended to stumble over a nonexistent tree root. She got the result she was looking for. The young man pulled her closer to his side. He was completely besotted and completely out of his league. For all her tender years, Alais was a seasoned professional when it came to flirting.
Ilse snorted, which drew a glance from her mother. “Another perfectly good man ruined by the charms of Alais”, she commented, tilting her head in the direction of the pair. Elsbeth rolled her eyes and broke off from the group, heading out to rescue the poor young man from the clutches of her 16 year old daughter. Really, she though, Alais and Tyran are the same child in two different bodies. Goddess, was it fair? Wasn’t one enough?
Within the hour, they reached the entrance to Castle De Lamrey. They would have reached is sooner but for the mob of villagers pressing close and hindering their travel. Ilse’s stomach was grumbling loudly by the time the reached the courtyard. All along the route to the manor, her nostrils were filled with delicious aromas, causing her mouth to water and her stomach to rumble. Galeron, his arm wrapped around her and his hand splayed across her middle, could feel the little reverberations through the fabric of her cloak. He squeezed gently and smiled at her. At last they broke free of the mob and trotted to their destination.
Reaching the courtyard, Galeron dismounted and caught Ilse around the waist as she slid from the big horse. He tied the stallion to a ring mounted in the stone wall, next to a water trough. Everyone from the manor was in the crowd trailing behind them. One of the stable boys would take care of the horse when they arrived. They were ahead of everyone else in the family and the first in the huge oaken doors to the keep. Once inside, barely past the lintel above the doorway, Galeron pulled Ilse into his arms and kissed her deeply. Her arms slipped around his waist, and her hands splayed across his strong back as she responded. She pulled his lower lip between her teeth and tugged gently. His nostrils filled with the fresh clean scent of her, a tantalizing blend of flowers and herbs mixing with the cold mountain air of their village.
Galeron finally released her. “I just wanted a little taste of what’s to come” He teased. “I think I hear the others. We’d better go out to greet them.” He guided her back over the threshold. “I’ll be counting the hours till this evening, Love”. Ilse’s knees were slightly weak as she stood at the doorway, waiting to invite the guests into her home.
Happy pandemonium ensued as first family, then guests, piled through the oak entryway to the castle. Those who could not fit within the confines of the interior would set up festivities in the courtyard. Nobody would be left out of the celebration. There was food and drink for all, as well as a warm hearth or outdoor fire pit to warm the folk of Taleria on this festival day.
Ilse and Galeron immediately retired to the great hall, where countless trestle tables had been set with linens, and plates and goblets of pewter. There were great bowls of fruit and pitchers of wine, water and ale set about on the surface. Galeron, Ilse and Elsbeth seated themselves comfortably at the high table, and waited for their guests to assemble at the various tables throughout the hall. Galeron poured spiced wine for himself and the two women, and they waited for the hall to fill completely. Once everyone had assembled together and was either seated or at least focusing their attention at the front of the room, Galeron lifted his cup high and raised a toast.
“I raise a toast to my beautiful mate, Ilse. Sacred Priestess to all here, my beloved wife and the future mother of our many, many children” He grinned and winked at Ilse. “May her belly swell today with the bounty of our feast and may it swell in the future with the fruit of our love”. All crowed “To Ilse!” and downed their cups in a single gulp. Galeron refilled Ilse’s goblet. The crowd hushed and focused their attention on the new Priestess.
“My beloved friends and family, you are gathered here to celebrate the end of one era, and the beginning of another. My mother has led you wisely these many years and cherished you as she has cherished her own children. You have my vow that I will hold this office sacred and do my very best to serve you as well as my mother has.” She turned to face Elsbeth. “Honored Mother, I ask your assistance in this task before me. I am yet young and inexperienced, and all the good intentions in the world may not make up for that lack. I treasure your wisdom and guiding hand. I shall look to you to continue to walk beside me while I perfect the ways of High Priestess.” Elsbeth’s eyes filled with tears of love and pride, and she nodded once, too overcome to speak. Ilse squeezed her hand and then raised her cup high. “Right now, this Priestess is hungry. Let the feasting begin!” She cried and downed the second cup, slamming the pewter vessel to the table to signal the serving of the first of many courses.
The servants brought in unbelievable quantities and varieties of food. A giant soufflé with morels and wild onions graced each table. Fried potatoes with bacon and onions were passed; large trenchers of bacon and fried ham were set at either end of each table. Sweet pastries filled with almond paste and pecans accompanied the rare, dark aromatic brew made from roasted beans of the Kaffe tree, a plant native to the southern reaches of the Denobian Empire. Planks of smoked salmon and capers were set in the center of the table, along with baskets of breads and rolls, accompanied by white soft spreading cheeses. There was food covering every possible surface, and Ilse dug in with gusto. She was so hungry that she was beyond making a decision on what to eat. So she tried some of everything, starting with what was nearest to her, a crusty roll with soft cheese and some smoked salmon. The salty, flavorful fish was complemented beautifully by the slight vinegary taste of the capers and lushness of the cheese spread thickly on the roll. She savored the flavors, and washed each bite down with alternate swigs of fresh water and wine.
After her initial hunger was sated, Ilse took more time to sample all of the offerings on the table. Galeron smiled and chuckled as he piled a second helping of potatoes onto Ilse’s plate, telling her that if she didn’t slow down, she’d be at maximum capacity before the third course. Ilse only wagged her fork at him and made a mock attempt to spear him for her next course, grinning wickedly as she smacked her lips.
Following the initial course, food flowed continuously, empty bowls and trenchers being replaced by new varieties of meat or side dishes. Roasts of all kinds, beef, fowl, pork, venison, all graced the table; some in accompanying sauces or gravies, some presented unadorned, their own savory juices the only dressing necessary. Fruit compotes, vegetables in natural form or casseroled, and rice dishes were found everywhere. Salads of fresh greens imported from the warmer southern regions offered a fresh change from the heavier foods found at table. Galeron and Ilse took turns feeding each other, Galeron making quite a show of mock force when Ilse shook her head, denying her ability to consume another bite. In reality, Ilse ate at her own pace, taking a short break when needed, stopping to speak to one or another of her guests who came to the high table to offer their congratulations or to proffer best wishes on the happy couple.
“Full yet?” Galeron teased Ilse. It was a few hours after they had begun feasting, and Ilse had slowed considerably during the past quarter hour. She nibbled on a few nuts and drank small sips of her water, keeping up the appearance of eating, but not really consuming that much. She sighed and pushed her chair back a couple of feet from the table, leaning back to make herself more comfortable. It was the first glimpse Galeron had of her midsection, and he caught his breath at the sight of it. The pleated folds of sheer fabric molded to the roundness of her belly. It jutted out from underneath her ribcage and progressed in a smooth sphere to her lap. She groaned a little and reached down to rub the mound in an attempt to relieve some of the pressure. Her eyes widened as she looked down and saw herself. Dear Goddess, she looked about five months pregnant! She looked up to Galeron and saw in his eyes the same look she had detected in her father’s eyes many times when he gazed upon her mother’s gravid form. She blushed and then smiled, reaching for his hand. She placed his palm on the warm surface of her belly. His hand felt the heat through the silkiness of the fabric and he slid his palm back and forth, drinking in the feel of her as he gently rubbed the mound. They continued like this, lost in each other, for several moments, until Elsbeth coughed pointedly and they both looked up, startled to find themselves in a room filled with hundreds of others.
“I suggest you save that for the shrine, my dears.” Elsbeth advised, hiding a smile behind her goblet as she took another sip of her wine. She hadn’t had this much fun since her own induction, twenty years ago. Yes, she did believe she was slightly drunk. It was good to be alive, she decided. Oh Arran, forgive me, but I am happy today. I know you are here, watching over this celebration. We did well by Ilse, my love. She already relishes her role. I don’t think Taleria has seen such a priestess in many generations. The Goddess has blessed us in our daughter.
Ilse slid her chair back into the table. Galeron was sorry to see that beautiful stomach of hers disappear once again. He focused on her face, flushed with wine and the warmth of the huge fireplace to the right of their table. A rosy blush tinged her cheeks and her eyes glowed with something more than excitement at the day’s celebrations. He could see in them the longing of a woman for the touch of a man and he ached to give it to her there and then. They had several hours of celebration yet to endure before they would consummate their bonding at the shrine this night. He sighed and reached over to squeeze her hand, indicating the he felt the same way too.
“Do you need to take a break, perhaps a walk or maybe a trip to the privy?” He asked. He could do with some air himself. All this sitting was not something he was used to. He wanted to be up and moving, stretching his muscles and filling his lungs with fresh mountain air. What he really wanted was a chance to be alone with Ilse.
“I’ll be alright shortly.” Ilse replied. “But I could use a little fresh air, I think” She had taken the hint. “Mama, hold court here for us a little while, won’t you? We’ll be back within a candle mark.” Elsbeth snorted, knowing what they were off to, but waved them on anyway, and waved the acolytes away who would have accompanied them out the double doors to the balcony overlooking the gardens. Ilse threw her mother a grateful glance, and rose gracefully to her feet, only a little thrown off by the added weight of her belly. Arching her back to relieve stiffness only accentuated the swell under her gown and brought into clear relief the hard points of her nipples. Galeron had a hard time keeping his hands off her in front of all the guests, and stood up rather abruptly, turning swiftly so no one would notice the bulge in his white breeches, visible under his tunic. The two swept out of the room, barely noticed by all the merrymakers, who continued to celebrate with gusto.
They strolled out into the chill afternoon and, arm in arm, ventured to a small alcove on the northern end of the balcony surrounded by evergreens. Once behind the screen of foliage, Galeron pulled Ilse close to him and began to devour her lips. His hand slid down to settle on the swollen curve of her abdomen and began once again to rub the fabric against her skin. More urgently, he pressed her back against the castle wall and began to trace searing kisses down her neck, pausing to tease each erect nipple before slipping her breasts out of the low cut neckline of her gown and suckling each of them. Ilse ran her hands through his silky hair, groaning as his mouth pulled harder on her nipple, oblivious to the cold and the rough stone scraping her back. Her knees were water, her belly on fire, her private parts moist with desire.
“Galeron. Oh. Please. We must stop.” She made no attempt to remove his head from her breast. She wanted his lips to move lower, to the hot and yearning bulge of her belly, then below.
But Galeron heeded her words, not her wishes. He dragged himself from her breast, and put the gown back into place. Breathing raggedly, he pushed himself away from the warmth of her body, one hand reluctantly trailing along the curve of her stomach.
“You’re right, Ilse. That is why you are the Priestess. You are wiser than I am”. He took huge gulps of cold air, trying to will his erection to go away.
“No, I’m not wiser. I’d much rather continue this lovemaking. But we do have a role to perform here this day.” Ilse smoothed her gown down around her and adjusted the golden circlet in her hair. “We have only a few more hours to endure. Then, we will have each other for the rest of our lives”. She reached out to touch his cheek. His skin was hot and flushed; a testament to the heat of his passion. He grasped her hand and pressed the palm to his lips, then released her. Taking her by the elbow, he guided her back towards the hall. On the other, far side of the balcony was another screen of evergreens. As they passed through the door, they heard sighs and gasps, followed by a soft groan.
“No, no, we must not! Not without the proper bans and approval from your mother.” A husky male voice declared, more pleading than authoritative.
“But Marek, I love you; you love me; what other approval do we need?” The sweet female voice persuaded.
“Alais! Stop that and go back to the feast, before I drag you out of there myself!” Ilse barked at the evergreens. A sharp intake of breath and a groan of “Oh Gods, the Priestess!” from Marek preceded the rustling of the evergreens as articles of clothing were adjusted hastily. Ilse and Galeron swept on by, laughing silently, Galeron thanking the Goddess for such a treasure of a wife.
Once again in the great hall, Galeron and Ilse found Gran Lara seated in Galeron’s chair, chatting with Elsbeth. Ilse hugged her Gran from behind, wrapping her arms around the old woman’s shoulders and dropping a kiss on her silver grey head. Gran reached up and patted the arm above her, saying, “How’s my lamb this day? Feeling like a Priestess yet?” She smirked. “Don’t be surprised if you never do. You’ll feel just like your old self – except your belly will be perpetually ballooning and your people will think you are special. Ach, let them have their ideas. ” Chuckling, she dragged Ilse forward for an upside down kiss on the forehead. “I’ll get out of your seat now, Galeron. This old woman was just resting her bones.” She made a motion to get up but Galeron stayed her with his hand. “Stay right there, Gran. Ilse and I will share a seat. After all, this is one of the last times we’ll both fit in one chair” Lara let out a hoot of laughter and Elsbeth raised her goblet in a toast to Galeron’s wittiness.
“Mama, you’d better have a look around. We just caught Alais about to deflower that poor Marek boy. If you don’t see her in the hall within a minute or so, you might want to check the south alcove.” Elsbeth made a disgusted sound and rose to her feet, a little unsteady, but otherwise still her regal self, and set off once again to rescue the boy from her younger daughter’s clutches.
Galeron plopped down in Ilse’s seat and pulled her down onto his lap, holding her in place with one hand clamped around the firmness of her mounded belly. Reaching over to the table, he grabbed several dates and began popping them into her mouth, admonishing her, “Eat up, my little partridge. We want you plump for the sacrifice, you know”. Ilse made a face but ate the dates all the same. She then slid off his lap and into Elsbeth’s empty chair, and resumed eating in earnest, tucking into a grape stuffed capon and steamed vegetables, slathering some fresh creamery butter on top of them. While she was working on these, a bowl filled with piping hot popovers was placed on the table in front of her. Her eyes widened with delight. She adored popovers, and these smelled delicious. Warm and steaming, the tantalizing aroma of cinnamon wafted up to her nostrils, urging her to devour the whole lot. She didn’t eat them all, but she did finish off five before she moved on to another dish.
The merriment continued throughout the day. Speeches were made, minstrels and mummers performed for the crowds. Ilse continued to eat steadily, with only occasional pauses to relieve the pressure in her tummy, allowing the food to settle further into her digestive tract before resuming her relentless quest. Galeron was amazed at how much food she could consume and longed to see the results, counting the minutes until they could be alone together at the shrine, and he could caress her beautiful, ripe body.
At last, as the sun was setting over the western horizon, transforming the winter frosted garden to a glory of flame touched crystalline shapes, Elsbeth stood and announced the moment both Ilse and Galeron had been waiting for. Galeron would accompany several acolytes to prepare the shrine and await Ilse. Shortly thereafter, Ilse would arrive to consummate their bonding ritual.
The couple stood to make their temporary farewells. Galeron turned to Ilse to take her hand and was faced with the most magnificent sight he had seen in his 34 years. Ilse stood tall and proud, her hair a tumble around her lovely face. Her visage reflected love and pride, and just a twinge of discomfort. As his gaze traveled lower, his jaw dropped as well. There, underneath the sheer fabric of her gown, was the overripe lushness of a belly so full, it resembled that of a woman seven months pregnant. Her abdomen was so distended that the pleated fabric had expanded to one smooth piece of linen, every line of her visible to his eyes. Her navel was flush with the rest of her belly, and he saw the ring so recently placed there as a sign of their betrothal standing out like a beacon, drawing him to the promise of joys to come. It looked heavy, pendulous, gravid. He ached with the need to thrust himself deeply into it, to feel the weight of it pressing down onto him, to empty himself into that sacred vessel.
Ilse appeared to be very comfortable with this new form, if she wasn’t entirely comfortable with the slightly queasy feeling all that food had left her with. She stood erect, head high and shoulders back, the swell of her belly thrown out in front of her for the whole world to see. She unconsciously rested a hand on her bloated midsection, looking like the Goddess herself, serene and supremely sensual.
Galeron forsook formal tradition and pulled her close to him for a farewell kiss. He felt the taut bulge of her belly thrusting into his own and his arm snaked around her waist to draw her closer to him still. He could almost feel the throbbing of her need through the fabric of her gown as the navel ring scraped against his midsection. He whispered, “Just a short while, my love, and we will be one”, before releasing her to her mother’s care. He swept out of the great hall, followed by five temple acolytes, laden with various burdens and bundles. Ilse followed him with her eyes, absently stroking her heavily laden belly. Soon there would be nothing between them but this yearning, hot sphere that demanded to be filled with the whole hard length of him.
IV
The ride to the shrine seemed like it would never end. Ilse was impatient to be with Galeron, but ritual dictated that she travel slowly on horseback, accompanied by only two acolytes as an honor guard. Their way was lit by a full moon, the late winter landscape a fairyland of glimmering hillsides and ice rimed trees and bushes. Despite her warm woolen cloak, she was chilled to the bone, and she sipped frequently from the wineskin that held mulled wine brought from the keep. Her back, unused to the burden of her overblown midsection, ached with every jolting step the horse took. In short, she was miserable. She adjusted her seat in the saddle in a vain attempt to relieve the pain in her hips and spine, but there was not much relief to be found in her upright position. Eventually, she found comfort by rounding her body over the pommel of the saddle, relieving some of the pressure on her spine. Leaning forward, she rested her face along the side of her horse’s neck, wrapping her arms around it for warmth and stability. Her lower belly pressed into the pommel of the saddle. The rhythmic rocking motion of the horse soothed her tension and coaxed her into a semi-conscious state that left her dreaming of Galeron and the hours to come. Her belly pulsed with the rhythm of the horse’s gait. She began to feel warmth flooding through her veins and no longer felt the bitter cold of the mountain air. Almost before she understood what was happening, intense burning waves of pleasure swept across her lower belly, causing the muscles deep within to contract and release, cresting with each rhythmic shift of the saddle. She clung to the horse’s neck, allowing the orgasm to take her, murmuring “Goddess, oh Goddess” frantically, and pushing her belly into the pommel, so that the hard surface pressed into the base of her abdomen and thrust into her skin with each rolling step. Afterwards, she laid over her horse’s neck breathing raggedly as she slowly came back to the cold reality of the winter night around her. They had traveled into the forest and a dense growth of evergreens surrounding them blocked out almost all light from the night sky. Their way was lit only by the dim light of the full moon shining between the branches.
Glancing around to see if anyone had noticed this episode, Ilse acted as if she had fallen asleep, although sleep was the farthest thing from her mind at the moment. She was surprised to see the amber glow of the shrine’s entrance, not more than a quarter mile ahead through the trees. Stretching elaborately, she settled herself upright once more in the saddle, and downed the rest of her mulled wine in two big drags on the skin. She was dripping wet with desire, her belly taut and swollen and screaming with the need to be filled. She was primed to meet her mate and fulfill her destiny. Leaning forward in the saddle, she urged her horse forward at a trot, pulling ahead of the acolytes that accompanied her, running full tilt towards the shrine that contained all that she craved.
The five temple acolytes that had accompanied Galeron were waiting for her at the entrance to the cave. A large tent made from dyed animal skins had been erected nearby in the clearing, a warm brazier fire glowing within. The acolytes would remain all night in the tent, praying to the Goddess for a successful conception, while attending to the horses and whatever needs Galeron and Ilse may have. One of them stepped forward to hold the horse’s head as Ilse threw herself from its’ back. Handing her reins to the acolyte, Ilse stepped forward into the cave’s tunneled entrance, not waiting for her two followers to reach their destination. Another acolyte took her cloak from her, while yet another combed her long hair and adjusted her gown around her. The acolyte’s hand paused reverently over the bulge of Ilse’s middle, and she bent her head briefly to touch her lips to the swell before backing away and motioning Ilse forward into the chamber. A rush of desire swept through Ilse as the young woman’s hands and lips seared her skin through the tight fabric of her gown. The wetness between her legs intensified.
Ilse walked down the short tunnel to the chamber’s entrance. She wanted to savor every moment of this experience and hold each tiny detail in memory. She closed her eyes as she traveled forward, her hands on her swollen middle as she focused all her inner sight on the heart of her womanhood, that deep, pulsing glow in the center of her belly that called out for fulfillment. The fabric of her gown caressed the taut surface of her skin, its silky fibers bringing to life every nerve ending in her body. Her middle felt gravid and heavy, as alive as if the Goddess had somehow filled her belly with a full term child instead of what was simply a vast amount of food. Her ocean-colored eyes, when they opened, burned with a desire beyond anything she had ever known.
She stepped into the chamber and did not see Galeron at once. Silence stretched through eternity as she stood poised in the doorway. Then she heard his intake of air, as if he were trying to breathe past an obstruction in his throat. Even as she transferred her gaze down and to the right, she heard him cough lightly and ask from the depths of the hot spring, “Care to join me, my love?”
He was in the hot spring leaning back against a wall, one arm propped on the ledge, hand causally wrapped around a goblet, the picture of relaxed nonchalance. That was, of course, unless one caught the expression in his eye, or could see beneath the surface of the water to his groin. Ilse caught the first, but wasn’t close enough to observe the second. She didn’t wait for him to repeat the invitation.
Silently, she stepped to the edge of the pool and kicked off her shoes. Eyes locked with his, she descended the rough stone steps into the spring, her gauzy gown billowing out around her before sinking into the water and clinging to her like a second skin. Galeron tore his gaze away from hers to watch the scene before him, catching glimpses of bare skin beneath the swirl of fabric, long lean legs and a hint of the triangular thatch of dark hair above them. Her long hair floated around her as she descended into the water, framing her body as the water crept ever higher, over the swell of her hips and then at last plastering the material of her gown to her engorged belly and full breasts. She finally sank completely beneath the surface and emerged a moment later, a sleek, lusciously ripe water sprite advancing towards him.
“Was this what you had in mind?” She asked, turning onto her back and floating, her belly rising out above the water’s surface in a perfect sphere, its every detail visible to his burning gaze. The wet fabric only accentuated the jut of her navel ring, and he could see the navel itself was flush with the surface of her skin. As she lay floating in the water with her eyes closed, her belly rose and fell with each breath she took, the tight sodden fabric stretching to accommodate its expansion. His erection grew with every movement it made. He reached out to take her hand, which was floating out to her side. Swiftly, he pulled her to him, so that they were face to face at the edge of the pool, her gown and hair tangling them both.
“Actually, this is what I had in mind” Galeron crushed her lips with his and pulled her even closer. He tangled his fingers through her hair and delved deep into the recesses of her mouth with his tongue. Ilse responded by wrapping her legs around his torso and winding her arms around his neck. Galeron released her lips to travel further down her body, searing her skin with kisses, beginning with her neck and lingering on her heavy breasts. She arched her back, the hardened ball of her belly thrusting into him. Ilse could feel the insistent bulge of his manhood beneath her and thought it would take very little to send him over the edge into orgasm. Her own belly was on fire and she moaned as she frantically ground her bottom against the erection. But she wanted the first drops of his seed to be inside her womb, so she dragged herself away from him, shaking her head as she held the edge of the pool to steady herself.
“Galeron, we have to go to the alter to finish this. We can come back to the pool later, but we must consummate the bond on the alter.” Galeron leaned back against the side of the spring, breathing heavily, raggedly, eyes closed as he tried to gain control of his racing desire. Slowly, he nodded assent and opened his eyes to stare into Ilse’s own.
“Yes. We have to do this properly. But just you wait my water nymph. We’ll return here later and finish what we’ve begun” Galeron picked up his goblet and drained it in one gulp. He filled it again and offered it to Ilse, who drank all the contents and handed it back to him, before she turned and made her way laboriously to the other side of the pool, her gown and overstuffed belly slowing her progress somewhat. Galeron pushed himself up and out of the pool onto the ledge and then hastened around to the side from which Ilse was emerging, ascending the stone steps. Reaching down, he offered her his hand to help her up out of the hot spring, quite forgetting that he was as naked as the day he was born. Ilse looked up and gaped. Despite her playfulness in the pool and the desire currently raging through her, she was momentarily taken aback by the sight of her mate, who she had never before seen naked. Her first glimpse of him left nothing to her imagination. Well endowed and fully aroused, Galeron stood there with steam rising from his skin, narrow hips and lean legs supporting a well muscled torso, his hand reaching in her direction.
Flushed and momentarily flustered, Ilse took his hand and climbed the steps to the surface. Galeron dropped her hand and simply gazed upon her, taking in the picture before him. Tall and slender except for her protruding stomach, Ilse was a sculpture of the Goddess in living form. The rosy tips of her nipples peeked out over the low cut gown, which molded itself to her skin, clinging to every curve, its sheer fabric revealing every detail. Her belly surged out in front of her, a ripe vessel begging to be filled. The hand he had released came to rest on top her heaving belly and the other moved to cup the bottom, rubbing the hard surface as it swelled and receded rhythmically with her heavy breathing. She stood there, arms encircling this symbol of her station, silently beseeching him to make the first move in the creation of their child.
Galeron and Ilse walked silently to the alter, their marriage bed completely carved from wood. It was covered with feather beds, pillows and quilts, transforming the solid, hard wood into a haven of softness. Next to the alter was a table upon which sat a pitcher of watered wine and two goblets, and a small jar of herbal oil. Galeron stood behind her and combed her wet, tangled hair with his fingers, sweeping it to one side and nuzzling the nape of her neck. She leaned back into him and closed her eyes, savoring the touch of his lips on her skin. He moved his lips to her bare shoulders, kissing the length of each arm before unlacing the back of her gown, leaving a hot kiss in the wake of each level of cording that he removed. The gown laced from the nape of her neck down to the base of her spine and by the time that he was finished unlacing it, he was on his knees, his free arm wrapped around her middle, his hand rubbing her belly slowly, his fingers playing with the navel ring beneath the fabric. She was groaning quietly, swaying gently on her feet, making small thrusts with her hips that pushed her belly into his hand insistently. Galeron stayed where he was for a moment, wrapping both arms around Ilse, his hands caressing the hot flesh through the wet fabric of her gown as she continued to writhe beneath them, holding onto the edge of the alter for support.
He moved to stand in front of her and slowly peeled the gown from her skin. The fabric fell away like plaster being shed as the Goddess’s statue came to life. Galeron almost wept at the sensual beauty of the woman before him. Her skin was rosy and clear. Her breasts sat full and high atop the swollen sphere of her belly. And, oh! That beautiful belly! It thrust out in front of her, shiny and swollen so tight that her skin appeared almost translucent in the candlelight. Her pubic mound was almost eclipsed by the dome of flesh; blue veins stood out in relief against the creamy white skin. Her navel pushed out over the surface of her skin, and their betrothal ring hung from the lower half of the small knot of puckered flesh. Its gold and jeweled surface winked in the candle light with every breath she took, and Galeron watched it moving in fascination.
As the sodden gown hit the floor with a small splat, Galeron was released from his trance. He gave Ilse a little push into the softness of the bed and sank down next to her. She lay on her back, belly and breasts heaving as she stared at him. As much as he wanted to take her right then and there, he would savor every moment and every inch of her.
He began by kissing her face, eyes first, then cheeks and mouth, tongue and lips scorching a trail down her neck and to her breasts. She arched her back while he suckled, and he placed his hand on her belly, stroking a lazy pattern on her tight skin. She groaned deep in her throat and he moved his lips lower, touching every inch of the swell that strained under his caresses. He ventured lower still, tongue darting in and out of the dark, moist universe between her legs. She cried out and clung to the sides of the bed, rising to a frenzied peak, her belly heaving with her climax. When the waves subsided, he continued to kiss her, focusing on first one long leg and then the other. As he reached her feet, he paused to reach down and retrieve the bottle of herbal oil. Climbing down off the alter bed, he raised the pitcher high and intoned, “In the name of the Goddess Esmet, I anoint this fertile ground in which the seed of the future shall be planted”. He poured a thin stream down the center length of her abdomen, and then another in a cross pattern, both lines intersecting at her navel. Placing the jar of oil back on the table, he began to spread the oil into the skin of Ilse’s belly, the strong rhythmic movement of his hands stroking up towards her breasts and then sweeping down her bloated sides to the bottom of the mound of flesh, palms applying light pressure upwards on the heavy swell of her lower abdomen.
He continued this pattern until the oil was completely absorbed and the friction from his hands made her skin shiny and hot to the touch. She was moaning with pent up desire, her hips writhing underneath his hands, her arms reaching out to him, trying to drag him atop her.
He removed his hands and she whimpered. He shifted his position to the bottom of the bed and grasped her ankles. With one strong pull, he brought her bottom to the edge of the alter bed. Before she could react, he spread her legs and thrust himself into her, his throbbing penis delving deep into the hot core of her glistening, engorged belly. She cried out, perhaps in pain, perhaps in ecstasy, he didn’t know which, and then began to match him thrust for thrust. She arched her back, her belly rising up in front of him, straining for release. He held her hips and lifted her bottom from the bed as she jerked back and forth over his member. The quick jerking motion was what did him in. Arching his own back, he cried out as he released his seed into her waiting womb. She was shuddering, her belly jiggling with the movement, each shudder seeming to feed another orgasm as she continued to jerk and thrust long after he had emptied himself into her. They remained like that for several minutes, breathing heavily, Galeron slumped over the mound of her belly, which pulsed and throbbed with the aftermath of their lovemaking.
Ilse had been expecting pain, and there was a little, but not much. She had been expecting ecstasy, and there was indeed much of that. She did not expect the mind altering experience that engulfed her at the moment of their mutual climax.
Her huge belly, so heavily laden and burning hot with a need to have him inside of her, surged upwards as he entered her. A sharp pain seared her momentarily, and then a frantic need to thrust followed. She couldn’t get any closer and yet she strained as if her life depended upon melding their two bodies together as one. He lifted her bottom and thrust more deeply into her, causing her body to buck and jerk in a frenzied attempt to spear herself more fully on that huge throbbing pole. With a cry, he released himself into her, and her reality completely altered. Gone was the room around her. Her whole world became the sensations in her womb. Red hot waves rippled over and over again deep within her center. She could not have stopped them, not even if she had wanted to, and she did not. Tears rolled down her face as she sobbed in ecstasy, her hands stroking her swollen middle, which heaved up and down with each orgasmic contraction. Galeron allowed her the full experience, gently adding his own hands to hers as they stroked the tight skin of her belly. Finally, Ilse ceased her frantic movements and Galeron slumped over her body. A white light entered Ilse’s soul and pulsed warmly. The light continued to glow within her as she came back to reality, then slowly faded, a tiny spark hidden deep within the haven of its new home.
After some time, Galeron pulled out and collapsed on the bed beside her. She lay with her eyes closed, face wet from her tears, still breathing heavily. Galeron gently wiped the tears from her cheeks with his thumb and spoke softly in her ear.
“Did I hurt you much? I couldn’t tell.” He stroked her hair away from her face and she sighed with the gentle touch.
“No. It didn’t hurt much. At least not for long and the ending was worth the pain of the beginning”. She smiled her lopsided smile, eyes still shut. She held his hand to her lips for a moment and then placed it on her belly. “Do you think we have accomplished our task? Is there a new life beginning in here?” She opened her eyes and propped herself up on her elbows, gazing down at the rounded flesh beneath her breasts. Still distinctly distended, her abdomen did not, however, look as huge as it had earlier. The food had worked its way out of her stomach and into her intestines, so her belly was still quite large beneath her navel, but the top half of her abdomen had begun to deflate a bit. She frowned. “I don’t look pregnant”. Then she giggled. “Well, at least not as pregnant as I looked an hour ago”.
“You look beautiful, my wife, whatever the size of your belly.” He screwed up his face as if thinking very hard. “But I do admit I have a liking for big, round bellies. So, I guess the only thing to do is make sure you become pregnant.” He bent over her until his nose was inches away from her navel. In a stern voice he admonished her middle, “It is your most solemn and holy duty to grow. It is my most solemn and holy duty to make sure you do.” Ilse laughed and her belly whacked him in the nose. That brought on a fit of laughter from both of them. Soon, they were snuggled together beneath the quilts, content in each other’s company. They talked of everyday things; Tyran’s latest exploits, Shadow’s petulant expression as he was penned up in the stables before the celebration began, the village elders’ speculation on how soon they could plant crops. They murmured drowsily for some time and drifted off into slumber, their legs tangled, Galeron’s hand still resting lightly on Ilse’s round belly.
They woke a few hours later, their bodies on fire with the need to join once more.
Galeron was quick to get out of bed. He padded softly to the front of the chamber and whistled quietly for the acolyte that was waiting at the entrance to the cave for just such a moment. He whispered something to the young man, who bowed and ran swiftly from the room, only to return moments later with a large vessel, wide on the bottom and narrow on the top, with a small, rounded spout on one edge. Galeron took the vessel from the acolyte’s hands and bowed in thanks, then returned to the bed, where Ilse was sitting with her legs dangling over the edge.
Setting the large urn down on the table, Galeron picked up the jar of watered wine. He filled both drinking vessels and lifted one to Ilse’s lips. She drank the entire contents in one swift movement. He then put the second vessel to her lips and she drank that, instinctively understanding that he wished to fill her to the brim before taking her a second time. The second draught went down as easily as the first and she was about to motion for a third when Galeron shook his head slightly and traded the drinking vessel for the larger one brought by the acolyte. This he also lifted to her lips, the rounded spout fitting neatly into her mouth. Oddly, though still stuffed from the night’s earlier festivities, Ilse’s mouth watered at the smell coming from the urn. Vanilla, cinnamon and honey mingled to tantalize her senses. She even caught a whiff of almond (and was that yeast she smelled?) before the mixture began to stream down her throat.
It was a smooth, frothy substance, eggs and butter mixed with cream and flavorings, and warmed to a temperature that was not as hot as to burn, but hot enough to warm her throat and belly as it traveled downwards. She opened her throat wide as Galeron continued to pour the wonderful substance into her. Soon, the entire contents of the giant vessel were gone and she was licking her lips in an effort to savor every last droplet of the luscious treat. Galeron dipped a finger into the urn to scrape a bit of the mixture and spread it onto her lips before placing his own on top of hers and tasting the cinnamon and honey for himself. Placing his hands on her hot skin, he felt for any movement within her belly from the chemistry that he knew was working in her digestive system. She leaned back unaware of the changes taking place, allowing him to press and prod, gasping slightly with desire as he hit a particularly sensitive spot near her pubic mound and moaning more insistently as he continue to rub the area. She began to feel a gurgling in her middle, and then a swift swelling sensation hit her belly like a hurricane, taking her breath away as her abdomen surged forward almost instantaneously (that was yeast!). Desire and fire blended as Galeron slipped to his knees, pressing his cheek against the heat of her skin. She writhed in ecstasy, moaning and gasping and crying out to the Goddess as the fire in her belly grew along with its dimensions.
Galeron was almost blind with desire. The sight of Ilse’s white belly literally growing before his eyes was beyond anything he could have imagined. As his hands caressed and groped, he could feel the alchemy taking place within her, the yeast mixing with the warm liquids. Small gurgling sensations met his probing fingertips as they pressed into her stomach area. He felt the throb of blood through her lower abdomen as he gently palpated the region close to her pubic mound, Ilse’s soft moan of desire signaling to him that this was a particularly sensitive area for her. He pressed harder and she moaned louder as she pushed downward with her abdominal muscles, meeting the press of his fingers with equal pressure from her lower belly.
Then the moment he had been waiting for arrived. Ilse’s belly literally swelled before his eyes. She arched her back, thrusting her hips toward the ceiling, her huge belly expanding visibly under the pressure of so much warm liquid and yeast. She was crying out the Goddess’s name in a plea for release as she thrust that tight and shiny sphere at him. Galeron slid to his knees and pressed his cheek to the hot parchment of her skin. His face beat with the surge of blood through her skin and when he turned to press his lips to the surface, he felt the hot pulsing vibrations of desire shooting through her belly. Looking up, he saw an almost unbelievable sight. Her skin was stretched to the limit, translucent and covered with a light sheen of sweat. Blue veins stood out vividly against the slightly pink surface. Her navel stuck out a full inch from the surface of her abdomen. Her wedding ring was digging into the skin below. Her enormous belly heaved up and down, up and down as she sobbed her need out loud. All this he saw from his vantage point below and his mind raged with the need to possess her once again.
Dragging himself up to a standing position, he pushed himself between her legs and grasped either side of her belly, positioning himself to thrust deep within her. But Ilse had other plans in mind. She shoved him back and then pushed him onto the bed, using the thrust of her belly as a leverage to move him into place beneath her. She reached down and grabbed his penis, stroking it with long, hard movements that made him almost explode before she could position herself atop him. She rubbed her bloated belly over him again and again, dragging it upwards on his cock, and then sliding her wet crotch across it until he was himself crying out to the Goddess for release. His penis was swollen beyond bearing, its head bulbous and purple with the blood flow. He was almost mindless with desire when she at last slipped herself over it and slid down, engulfing him completely into the universe of her womb. He clung to her and they moaned as she slid back and forth over him, their bellies colliding and rubbing together, her heavy breasts rubbing against him, their sweat making their bodies slick. She was gasping for breath, thrusting over and over again, grunting as the pressure from the yeast mixture spread into her intestines and expanded. The sensation was unbearable, heat and desire mixing with the internal pressure of the gaseous substance on her genitals and womb. She sat upright and arched her back as Galeron sought to grasp her hot, hugely swollen middle, pressing into the sensitive spot at the base of her belly with his thumbs. She screamed with her climax as she once again hardened her lower abdominal muscles and met the upward thrust of his thumbs with the downward thrust of her belly. Her hands rubbed and squeezed her breasts, kneading them as she squirmed and writhed and speared herself even harder on his throbbing penis. Her belly thrust outwards over and over again as she ground her crotch into him, pinning him to the bed as she climaxed continuously, her initial scream trailing to a hoarse wail as her voice gave out before her desire did.
Galeron’s entire being coalesced into one glorious sensation. His world became the hot thrust of the giant sphere engulfing his member. As she sat straight up and pushed down with the muscles of her belly, he thought he would die with the pleasure. His cock swelled even further deep within her and he marveled that he hadn’t yet exploded. He reached up and pressed his thumbs into the sensitive spot right above her pubic bone, knowing this would send her over the edge into orgasm. He was rewarded with the ecstatic scream that ripped from her lips but if he expected her to stop right there, he was mistaken. To his amazed eyes, her hands began to knead and massage her large breasts as she threw back her head, wailing as she writhed and ground her hips above him, her belly practically a living thing, heaving and surging back and forth in her frantic attempts to spear herself further on his cock. He lost all control then and screamed his own climax, grabbing her hips and thrusting upwards. Wave after wave of semen shot into her waiting womb.
This time, Galeron met Ilse in the twilight world she had traveled to during their first joining. They tumbled together, souls locked in a rainbow burst of ecstasy, as their bodies continued their frantic physical act of love. Again, a light entered Ilse’s center of being, blazing first hot, then warm, and then flickering to a gentle ember to settle somewhere deep inside her. Spent at last, she slid off him and laid on her back, breathing heavily at first, her belly aching with the after effects of their almost violent lovemaking. Gradually, her breathing slowed as did his, and they once again drifted into slumber.
And yet a third time they awoke and came together, exploring and touching, flat belly pressed to rounded one, eyes locked, skin scraping against skin.
Kisses and caresses were more languorous than the first two times. Ilse took great pleasure in bringing her husband to the edge of climax with her hands and lips and tongue. She took him into her mouth and feasted on him as hungrily as she had her food earlier that evening. He lay on his back watching her in the glow of a hundred candles, on her hands and knees, bent over him. Her long, richly colored hair swung around her as she moved. Her belly was still enormously distended, and hung low and heavy, scraping against his thighs as she worked over him. When she felt he was just about to explode in her mouth, she released him with a small plop, then sat back on her haunches and gazed at him. Her hands absently stroked her abdomen and breasts as she watched him watching her. Her eyes were deep sea pools of desire. Her hands squeezed harder on her breasts and she arched her back, thrusting her hips out and silently begging him to take her.
Galeron stood up, and without a word, swung Ilse off the bed and carried her to the hot spring. He descended the stone steps and launched them both into the deep water. Taking her hand, he swam over to a small ledge on one side of the pool. He sat on the ledge, the water level rising to his chest. Ilse was treading water in the deep section of the pool, head to one sized, watching him quizzically. Galeron said one word. “Sit.”
Ilse caught on quickly.
Positioning herself astride his lap, she reached down and guided him into her. Galeron threw his head back and moaned as she slid further down, totally engulfing his member. She placed her hands on the edge of the pool, either side of his head, and began to slide up and down, her breasts slapping into the water with each downward plunge she took. Galeron grasped her hips and urged her to move faster. Up and down she went, her belly rubbing against his torso as she continued her rhythmic pace. Her arms then wrapped themselves around his neck and she began a rocking motion, back and forth, her spine arched. He felt the hard pressure of her engorged abdomen thrusting into his own and could hardly keep himself from ejaculating right then. He met her rocking motion with his own, and they became lost in a timeless whirl of sexual energy. She writhed and rocked, shifted her hips in a circular motion, pushed her rock hard belly into him until they could stand no more. They climaxed simultaneously and Ilse ground her bottom down, vaginal muscles pulling every drop of his seed into her. Then, still exhausted from their previous lovemaking, they finished quietly what they had begun.
For a long while they stayed connected, floating together in the hot water, one being, complete and whole. Ilse finally broke the contact, saying she had to go relieve herself. Galeron watched her exit the hot spring and followed the seductive sway of her hips as she headed down a short tunnel to the garderobe. She was squeezing the water out of her hair as he lost sight of her. He closed his eyes and thanked the Goddess for this incredible blessing that She had bestowed upon him.
When Ilse returned to the main cavern, she found Galeron already asleep beneath the quilts. He murmured sleepily as she climbed in beside him and pulled her close before subsiding once more into a deep slumber. Ilse lay awake for a while, listening to Galeron’s soft breathing. Her hands strayed to her swollen belly, gently stroking its sensitive surface. Her last thought was “I wonder what we’ll call her?” before she too, fell into a deep, contended sleep.


"Ilse's Story" is © its creator, BL2K2003.
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