Jair's Journey: Part One
The sun sprinkled through the leaves over head and shimmered on the mist rising from the from the forest floor. Giant moss covered boulders and fallen trees rose up in silent witness to Jair and Copper's meandering passage. Lost in thought, Jair let Copper pick her own way through the forest. The mare's long black legs unerringly stepped over and around the small rocks and occasional tree roots that cluttered the trail they were following.
Jair had left Canopy Aerie several hours before sunrise. Navigated the trail in the dark had been somewhat dangerous, but the moon was full over head, and Jair had carried a large flashlight for the when the trees cast shadows too long for the moonlight to penetrate. Things between her and Kronos were starting to get confusingly comfortable, so when Kristov had invited her to join him, Radzin and Vassily (yes everyone, I'm changing the spelling of his name cuz it's easier for me to type this way) on their trek to the Christmas Celebration at Camelot, Jair had jumped at the excuse to leave the tree house. She had tried for days to analyze the thing between her and Kronos, but she just couldn't think clearly around him.
Even sending him to Sharon for her birthday hadn't helped. Kronos had only been gone for a day and a night - just long enough for Jair to realize the depth of her comfort with him because she hadn't been able to sleep without his arm thrown across her. When Kronos had returned, very pleased with himself and the encounter, he had playfully enacted his "revenge" for the part he thought Jair had played in his "enslavement".
<And what torture that was.> Jair thought with a saucy smile. <He could have at least remembered to give Sharon the actual gift from me though.>
By all accounts, Kronos was the perfect roommate and lover. He helped with the household chores, made her laugh when she was getting too serious, and was positively incredible in bed. It was all so un-Kronos like that it was starting to frighten Jair. It wasn't until she left that she realized just how long she had been on the island. In all that time, she had not wanted to leave her tree house even once.
<Well, trips down to the river to swim with him once in a while probably don't count. And that afternoon of playing in the mud - while incredible entertaining - wouldn't count either, since we just went right back to the tree house after the swim to wash most of the mud off.> Jair thought glumly.
<I have friends here.> she whined to herself. <That is why I came here. How can one man so dominate my thoughts day and night?>
It wasn't even an obsessive thing, or a tremendously powerful thing. It was just so comfortable to be at home with him. There seemed to be so many things for the two of them to do (although, Jair admitted an awful lot of it seemed to lead to sex), that Jair just managed to "forget" there was more to this island most of the time. The ease and comfort of the arrangement made it all the more insidious in Jair's mind, and now, even though the mare was slowly picking her way down the trail, Jair was running away.
Jair had left a short note on the sofa telling Kronos she was going to spend the holidays with Kristov. The note had been propped up against the pillow in such a fashion that he wouldn't see it immediately. It had taken Jair nearly twenty minutes to choose the spot to leave it. If she left it out in the open, he would find it too quickly and might have come after her. This way, he wouldn't find it until the afternoon and he would know she had been gone for hours by then. Slipping out of bed to get ready hadn't been that difficult, since Jair got up many times all night long, and Kronos had become so used to it he didn't even stir anymore. Even getting Copper saddled and into the lift hadn't posed a problem since lift was so quiet, and Kronos was used to her going for morning walks. Usually, she would come back and he would have coffee for himself and a Mountain Dew for her waiting on the table. Who would have thought the End of Time could be domestic?
<Even when he gets mad, he's gentle with me.> The memories of their romp in the mud brought a smile to her face, but it was the memory of the their other fight that warmed Jair's heart. Kronos had been furious, shouting and stomping. He had thrown his boots across the room so hard they had bounced on the table and ricocheted over the railing to be heard crashing through branches. That had set them both off laughing, and when they could breath again, he had gathered her into his arms and kissed her apologies away, replacing them with his own. It was just not what she had expected from him.
<And, even with all of this, no one would mistake him for "tamed" or "whipped". There is so much raw power in his every move, such a reservoir of latent strength and energy in his very presence that just sitting across from him while reading a book makes me feel more alive and vibrant.>
A ruefully chuckle rumbled through Jair as she admitted to herself that it might be due to the sometimes unexpected nature of his "attacks". Kronos was constantly surprising her whenever she was not paying attention - sneaking up on her to touch her or kiss her, the sensation all the more erotic for its impulsive and abrupt delivery.
Jair's sigh broke the silence of the day, and Copper wickered a greeting to her distracted rider. Jair looked around orienting herself and realized it was around 10:00. The serene mist that had shrouded the forest earlier had long since been burned off by the sun. Up ahead, just visible through the trees, was an odd shaped mud hut.
<Oh, this must be Caspian and Mel's place.> Jair felt a trickle of panic creep up her spine as she noticed smoke coming out of the chimney. Mel and Caspian were probably inside, cuddling in front of the fire or just cleaning up after some breakfast. The thought triggered a loud rumbling in Jair's stomach. Indecision twisted and knotted Jair's grip on the reins.
<Caspian is just a little to close to Kronos for me to handle right now.> Tear's pricked Jair's eyes as she turned Copper to make a wide circle around Mel's home. Jair would have to stop by some time when she felt a little stronger and could think a little straighter.
"Well, Copper ... I've had about as much moping as I can stand for one day." Jair announced with a forced smile. "If the man confuses me this much just because I want to visit some friends for a while, then I definitely need to put some space between myself and him."
A rush of determination flowed though Jair as she lightly kicked Copper into a gallop once the had completed the circle of Caspian's domain. Jair finished her journey around the mountain in a wind whipping blur - stopping only to rest and water Copper as needed. The two arrived at Suz's palace around sunset, dusty and grimy, but Jair knocked on the door with a smile on her face - she was too tired and hungry to worry about Kronos anymore.
~ End of Jair's Journey Part One ~
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