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Free Fiction: Advent, Day Two

December 2, 2010

Title: A King’s Warmth
Characters: Wenceslaus, Podevin
Spoilers: None (characters from history)
Word count: 1,055
Rating: NC-17

~*~*~*~

“Sire!”

Podevin stumbled through the snow after his king, the wind biting through his simple clothing. He didn’t wear the thick furs and lush fabrics that the king did, and the icy air cut through him like a knife. Podevin didn’t think he could make it a step further. All he wanted to do was sit down and huddle against a tree.

Why did they have to chase after these wayward men? Very few of them were truly gracious to their king for his generosity, and Podevin marveled each time the king simply smiled and left the poor with food and wood and clothing. He didn’t require thanks or gratitude, only the knowledge that he’d done all he could in these scarce times, and those acts only endeared him more to Podevin.

“Podevin,” Wenceslaus called, turning in the snowy tempest. “When we return, you will have a cloak made!”

Podevin laughed, shaking his head. “I would rather you give the cloak to a mother freezing in the streets.”

“I know.” Wenceslaus pulled Podevin close, wrapping his own cloak around the slighter man. “But what good will you do frozen in the woods one night? Best to have a cloak made.”

“If you insist, Sire,” Podevin murmured, leaning into the heat of Wenceslaus’ body. This was why he didn’t want a cloak. If he had one, Wenceslaus would have no reason to share his own cloak and heat with him, and this was one of Podevin’s guilty pleasures. Sins of the flesh, his priest would hiss, but Podevin couldn’t help himself.

They trudged through the dark and snow, the moon high above them bright and bold. Podevin felt safe and secure burrowed against Wenceslaus, and when they arrived at a lone peasant’s cottage, his mood was much improved. He stepped away from his king, waited dutifully at the door as Wenceslaus went inside and laid out the small feast of duck and wine and bread for the sick man, and his heart was warmed as the man praised Wenceslaus, thanked him, bowed to him. It was, in Podevin’s mind, the only thing Wenceslaus wanted in return, even if Wenceslaus never uttered a word about their charities.

Wenceslaus was humble, and it made Podevin want to be just as humble, just as good.

The slow return from the peasant’s cottage was just as cold, just as trying. Halfway through the forest, Podevin stopped again. He was soaked through, frozen to the bone, and he was tired. He was so very, very tired. Podevin leaned against a tree. “Forgive me, Sire,” he panted. “The cold, I cannot take another step.”

“It is a bitter night,” Wenceslaus admitted, turning and hiking back to Podevin. “You should have a cloak, Podevin.”

Podevin shivered, gazed up at Wenceslaus, and smiled. “You should visit the poor during the day when the sun is above to warm us.”

Wenceslaus laughed, and the sound moved through Podevin in a sinful way. “We visit the city during the day, see to the sick there. Night is when we visit those living on our lands.”

With his teeth chattering, Podevin’s words were uneven. “Night is also when there is nothing but the wind and the snow and the dark.”

“And us.”

Wenceslaus’ voice had deepened, just as it always did when they were alone like this, and Podevin lifted his eyes, gazed up at his king. There was heat in those eyes, heat and the promise of shared warmth. Why was it they could never stop themselves? Why did these trips at night have to serve the purpose of charity and sinning? Why did he not care one wit when Wenceslaus bowed down to him and brought their lips together in a kiss that soon warmed him right through to his center?

Podevin’s arms looped around Wenceslaus’ neck as he parted his lips and the kiss deepened. His king’s hands, large and hot, slide under the flimsy fabric of his tunic, warmed his cold flesh. Within moments, he was aching between his legs, his skin aflame as they kissed in the silent, snowy forest. He kept one arm around Wenceslaus’ neck, his fingers tangled in dark, curly hair while the other fumbled to pull down their stockings.

There was warmth in every kiss, every moan. There was heat in the hands that roamed his body. Podevin didn’t even notice the roughness of the bark behind him or the chill dampness of his own stockings. All he felt was the heat and passion his king inspired with every kiss, every touch, every whispered word that was for his ears only. As they took one another in hand, Podevin thought, not for the first time, that this was their small gift in harsh times. This brotherhood, devotion, and love were theirs and theirs alone.

He gasped into Wenceslaus’ mouth as he was stroked by knowing fingers. The passion flared brightly inside Podevin, and he matched Wenceslaus’ speed and grip. They moved together, lips-to-lips, the snow forgotten as lust burned brightly between them. Podevin came with the softest of cries, eagerly devoured by Wenceslaus. His lips burned from the roughness of Wenceslaus’ beard, but the pounding of his pulse in his ears, lips, and groin didn’t stop him from kneeling in the snow and taking his king into his mouth.

Podevin worshiped Wenceslaus, licking at him, feeling too hot in his own skin. Wenceslaus’ pleasure culminated in the sweetest of groans and a splash of salty bitterness over Podevin’s tongue. Inside and out, the cold was chased away, and Podevin rose, smiling as Wenceslaus kissed him tenderly. It took them only minutes to fix their clothing once more, and Podevin felt warm, content, and drowsy.

“Do you think you can manage the last mile before we reach home?” Wenceslaus asked, his eyes dancing with sated amusement.

“I’m warm now,” Podevin replied, but he eagerly slid beneath Wenceslaus’ cloak once more.

Wenceslaus began walking, and Podevin kept up with him. After a moment, Wenceslaus said, “A cloak. You will have a cloak made tomorrow if you are to continue accompanying me.”

Podevin was quiet as they walked. “Does this mean you will cease to warm me on our trek back?”

Another laugh rumbled up from Wenceslaus. “A cloak can never warm you as I do.”

“No,” Podevin agreed. “It can’t.”

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