Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Vikings are back in Week 10/Chapter 10 of Silver and Spice by Maria MacAuley!

Hello friends/followers! Welcome to week 10/chapter 10 of  Maria MacAuley's Silver & Spice. Now we present to you another portion of a very exciting, romantic and all-around great story.  We will be posting a chapter for you to enjoy each week until the story's end. We are looking forward to comments, feelings, thoughts, etc. of what you think for each portion posted. So please be sure to leave a comment in the comments section :)

Now I present to you... Silver and Spice!

View Prologue and chapter 1 HERE, chapter 2 HERE,  chapter 3 HERE,  chapter 4 HEREchapter 5 HERE, chapter 6 HEREchapter 7 HERE
chapter 8 HEREchapter 9 HERE

Ireland, eleven years previously

Twelve years since Aisling left. Eleven years planning his revenge. The deed was done. He had finished the bitch as she tried to protect her son. They were travelling with other pilgrims to Clonmacnoise, and foolishly, they had believed that God would protect them.  It had been ridiculously easy to ambush the group; none of the monks or priests had thought to carry weapons.  Despite the dull colour and shapeless nature of her cloak and kirtle, Aisling’s beauty shone through. The lad had her striking auburn hair, but his grey eyes could not conceal the fact that Kerik Halsrason was his sire. She had recognised her husband, and Peter knew it. It did not matter now. She was dead and the child was as good as gone. It was time to celebrate with his true son.  He did not care for any bastard children of the field hands. Sean was finally becoming a man following in his father's own image and actions.  Peter’s face contorted into a twisted smile, proud of the corruption of his son’s gentle nature.  That was almost a month ago.
“What are you thinking of, Peter?”  The woman in his bed playfully danced her fingers over his shoulders before burying them in his already matted chest hair. He snorted, and forced his knee between her thighs, before rolling over and grinding roughly into her, his still-black hair swinging over his face with each coarse thrust. Spilling his seed, he knelt up, panting and grunting.
He ran a filthy ridged fingernail down her over her breast. The woman of many secrets had arrived again in Dubh Linn a fortnight ago, this time with several young men almost half her age.
'What brings you here this season, Valkryie?'
'My fosterlings need to see life outside the north. Since men no longer go a-Viking, they need to learn of life beyond fishing and farming.'
'And what else do they learn of at your hands?' He smirked.
'Discipline. Bedsport.  To make a success of their lives.' The second sons of Jarls had a different path in life, much more fluid than that of their elder brothers. She had been a foster mother for the past seven years, and prepared her foster sons well for adulthood.  Jarls appreciated her taking these boys of twelve summers and turning them into men over the seasons, returning them to their families by the time they reached ten-and-seven.
She was waiting for her next fosterling. Kerik Halsrason made a concubine of her younger sister, Gertrude, a life of comfort and plenty that should have been hers.  To add insult to injury he had taken an Irish woman too; as if he had his own personal harem like those in Miklagard, or Constantinople, to those who lived there. Thirteen summers and the bitterness at his rejection had not softened. She could not foster his first born, but she would take very good care of his much-loved second boy. Kristr.  There had been discussion around the Dubh Linn settlement that he and his mother had been in Ireland, accompanied by Kerik to attend one of their ridiculous Christian pilgrimages when she had been ambushed and killed. She wished it had been Gertrude who died, lying and bleeding to death with a sword through her heart.
His grating voice broke her fantasy. 'Perhaps you could take my son into your foster care? He still has a lot to learn. Discipline and respect have been managed most effectively by me, and he already is showing the skills of a fine merchant and trader. Perhaps bedsport could be taught by you? He has passed ten-and-six summers and I know he has not lain with a woman.' He idly picked the grime from his dirty nails as he casually discussed his son’s lack of experience with women.
She sat up on the bed and reached for her linen shift. 'No. I only foster pure Viking sons. Occasionally a clever half-breed will be welcomed.' She had one in her care at the moment, a quiet, reflective boy, Johan O’Toole.  He was the offspring of an Irish sire and Norse mother.  Johann listened to all around him, yet gave away nothing. She was teaching him to travel between the worlds of his parents, inconspicuous in either society yet able to garner information from both. When Halsrason's boy arrived, that would be two. Enough mixed blood for anyone.
She stood up from the bed and washed her face and hands in a basin of water. 'Bring your son to me on the morrow.' She dried herself with a linen cloth, and with a regal flourish threw it aside. 'Shall we see if he shares his father's tastes?'
He scraped his greasy hair back into a leather tie, and gave a mock bow. 'As you wish, Alfhilde.'

Marthe could barely conceal her delight at the transformation of Roisin, with her mother's help. This pair was not going to make a suitable match without her assistance.
As the three young women entered the hall, led by Gertrude, Marthe heard the appreciative murmurs of the assembly. She looked up to see Kristr's grey eyes staring down the hall in appreciation at Roisin.  Marthe dipped her head, knowing she could barely keep her satisfied smirk to herself as she watched her brother from the corner of eye.  He stood to allow Roisin access to the bench, his hand brushing against the small of her back as she sought her balance on the narrow seat.
Marthe squeezed herself in on the other side of her brother, and started to pick at her food, but she was more interested in the conversation going on next to her.

Roisin spoke shyly to Kristr. 'Marthe and your mother washed me, and dressed my hair in a Norse style. Do you like it?'
He smoothed his hands over the waves. 'I like it very much. It is exquisite bound or loose.'

Marthe silently agreed with her brother.  Roisin’s hair was beautiful. If she were his wife, she would be required to cover it, a married woman's husband being the only person allowed to see her hair unbound, her head uncovered.  And Kristr would make a good husband, deserving of such a beauty.
As the meal progressed, and the conversation moved around the table, Marthe whispered to Kristr. 'Brother, I need your help.' He narrowed his eyes in amusement. If there was one woman on the Halsrason steading who did not need help, it was Marthe, the Maker of Mischief. He decided to humour her.
'Help? How can I be of assistance, you seemingly helpless daughter of Loki?'
She smirked at his friendly sarcasm. 'As you know, Roisin is learning our language. I need to say something to her in her own tongue, and you can translate for me.'
'What do you want to say to her?'
'I want her to know she can trust me. Give me the words for "Trust me".'
'Sister, I do not know of what you scheme, but the words you seek are: "Chur do mhuinin ionam".' Put your trust in me. Kristr knew his sister was plotting, no doubt his match with Roisin, but with a kiss on the cheek and a thank you, she repeated the words and bounced off. He caught Erik's eye and shook his head. Erik shrugged, obviously not part of Marthe's current endeavours. Kristr knew Marthe and knew that whatever she had planned for him, Erik's fate would not be far behind in their sister's meddlesome ways.
Marthe’s interfering aside; he knew that he wanted to be a husband. When he spoke with Flynn and took her to see her father, he would ask permission.

As the meal came to an end, Roisin gave a small yawn, and immediately Marthe was by her side. 'Kristr, Roisin is tired. Tell her that I will take her and help her a-bed.' She turned to Roisin, and back to Kristr smiling sweetly.
He gave an exaggerated sigh. 'Roisin, Sweetling, Marthe feels that you are tired this eve and she has offered to help you to your chamber. Do you wish her to assist you?'
Roisin looked to Marthe who nodded excitedly. 'Oh, I am a little sleepy this evening Kristr, but do you promise to come in and wish me good night before you retire?'
'Of course. I will not be long' He kissed her cheek. He wanted to wish her much more than a good night.
Roisin could not understand Marthe's enthusiasm for helping another woman to bed. As they entered Kristr's hall, she lit a taper from the smouldering hearth and lit a lamp as they went into Roisin's chamber. Marthe lit three more lamps within the room, bathing it in warm flickering light. She helped Roisin undress, not tolerating the smaller woman's reluctance at the removal of her thin linen shift.   As she covered Roisin with a soft seal fur for warmth and modesty, Roisin frowned as she heard Marthe speak in her own tongue. 'Put your trust in me.' Why would she say that?
'Ja.' Roisin answered in Norse, confused. 
Marthe squealed, jumped on top of her and looping a strip of linen around one of Roisin's wrists, then the other, she bound her hands, securing her to the slats of the wooden bed frame. Roisin twisted in outrage at her predicament, the fur slipping off her nude body, whilst Marthe smiled in approval. She placed a finger on Roisin's lips. 'Put your trust in me,' Marthe whispered again as she rearranged the fur to protect Roisin's modesty. She gave her a kiss on the cheek and waved good night. 

Roisin was left alone, thoughts of Marthe's mischief spinning through her head.  How foolish and naive she had been to be so easily overpowered by the younger, but much taller woman. What was Kristr going to say when he saw her like this?  He said that he would come in to bid her good-night, and he would release her.  Or would he?  She recalled their earlier embrace in the woods, and blushed as she realised Marthe’s plan.

Marthe sloped back into the hall, and poured herself a cup of ale.  She gave her brother a chaste kiss on the cheek, but it did not temper his suspicion.  ‘What have you done with Roisin?’ 
Marthe gave an exaggerated shrug.  ‘I have done nothing Kristr.  She is abed now, I helped her dress appropriately, and she is under the furs.’  Marthe giggled. ‘I have left you a gift, brother.’  She tugged the leather tie out of his bound hair, letting the waves tumble free.  ‘Chur do mhunin ionam,’ she whispered in his ear.  Why should he ever put his trust in her?  He grabbed the leather tie that dangled from his fingers, and with an exasperated growl, left the hall.
Kristr walked into the room and saw a wide-eyed Roisin on her bed, her breaths coming in short sharp pants. Marthe, he thought. It was obvious that Roisin was naked, beneath the fur, scared to move too much lest the fur slide off and expose her to his ravenous eyes. Her hands were loosely tied, but the knot was secure.
In her previous attempts to wriggle free from Marthe's bonds, Roisin was aware that the fur had moved a little around her legs, exposing her pale skin, slim ankles and calves to Kristr. He licked his lips as her looked at her as she tried not to writhe under his gaze.
'Kristr! Marthe brought me here! She told me to trust her, and now look at me! I am trussed!'  She gave a half laugh half sob at her situation and her play on words.
He sat on the linen chest. 'She told me she left me a gift in my chamber, this was not what I was expecting, but much better.' As he moved towards her, Roisin felt her heart beat faster and her womb tighten. She started to bite her lip in anticipation, but of what she was not sure. Kristr had promised never to take her against her will, and now she was willing in heart, soul and body. Her skin tingled as she looked up at him. He hadn't so much as touched her and she felt like she was going to explode.
'Easy, Sweetling. He brushed his thumb across her trapped lip and she released it, her lips parting as she held his gaze. He sat on the edge of the bed and caressed her cheek, as she rubbed against her his hand like a kitten looking for attention, pouting when he stopped. He gave her a chaste kiss on her open mouth, chuckling at her soft mewls when he moved away.
'What is the matter my sweet little one? I am very happy with the gift left for me by Marthe; perhaps I should feast my eyes on you a little longer before I remove the wrapping.'
Her voice filled with longing as she tugged on her bonds, and twisted, the silky silver fur having no purchase on her smooth skin, falling a little more, showing her slender thighs. 'Kristr! Please!'
'What do you want?'
'You.' The one word he wanted to hear.
He removed his tunic, and bent over to release her, helping her to sit up on the bed. She blushed as she draped the fur around her shoulders to cover her breasts. Taking her hair, he smoothed and braided it before securing the braid with his own hair tie.
Turning to face him, her hands cupped his face before stroking down over his shoulders and arms.  Entwining his fingers with hers, she pulled herself towards him, raising her head and parting her lips, her breaths shallow and fast. She closed her eyes and felt his warm mouth brush gently over hers.
'Roisin.' His prayer. 'Look at me.' As he lost himself in her eyes, the green was barely visible over her dilated pupils.  Despite the uneven light, the sparkle of anticipation was there. He was conscious of her trembling below him, but it was not the shiver of fear.
'Close your eyes.' As she obeyed, he kissed her eyelids, her nose, touching her lips lightly before pressing into a firmer kiss. Laying her back on the bed, the fur fell away and he surveyed every curve of her body, golden in the lamp light. She moved to cover her breasts and mons with her hands in shame as he caressed her body with those grey eyes, smouldering with want. He pushed her hands away.
'Nei, Roisin, I want to look at you in all your beauty.' As she giggled nervously in embarrassment she went to cover herself again, but Kristr gently took her wrists, and holding her arms to her side he started to kiss her neck, her breastbone, sucking gently on her rosebud nipples. She gasped at the unfamiliar sensations, differing emotions rising within her, her back arching, pushing herself toward him.
He moved down her belly, licking, nipping and kissing as he reached her mound over the soft curls leading to secret entrance. She whimpered as he kissed her thighs, easing her legs apart, murmuring in Norse. The words were unknown to her, but their sound no longer seemed harsh.
'Easy, Sweetling,' she barely heard his words as his tongue began to lap at the nectar of her womanhood. Laving on her sweet bud, she moaned out in confusion and passion, feeling the tension rising within her womb as he continued his ministrations, one hand stroking and kneading her sweet behind, the other caressing her breast. Twisting her fingers into his auburn hair she cried aloud in ecstasy and surprise as she felt her first release, the waves of passion continuing as he worshipped her belly and hips with his mouth, alternating firm kisses with gentle nips.
She gasped as he stood up to remove his breeches, and she saw him proud and erect above her. She had seen boy babies, but nothing like this. She could never accommodate anything of that size. Her eyes widened at the length and girth of a fully grown man.
He sensed her fear, at her first view of a man filled with longing; he ran his hands down the sides of her body, delighting in the feel of her sensuous curves. He hissed, breathing in sharply as he felt her take him in her hands, her innocent exploring touch making his desire rise beyond anything he had felt before. He would not last if he surrendered to her touch.
'I will be gentle, all will be well.' Bracing his body over hers, he leant in to kiss her, his mouth and tongue caressing her lips, his shaft reflecting the movements of his mouth as he sought her warm welcoming entrance. He paused as he savoured the sensation of being with a maiden. She gave a small moan as he entered her, her cry louder as he felt the breach of her maidenhead. He stilled as her velvet folds adjusted to his size. Looking into her eyes he saw her desire for him. This would not last long. He began to thrust, her warmth welcoming him, the rhythm of her hips meeting his.
Tears of pleasure blinded her, as she felt her bliss climb once again. She pulled him into her, her legs curling around his, her hands clasping at his back and as he gave a final thrust, he felt the ripples of her pleasure collide with his as they locked in the lovers' embrace, sealing their union.

Thanks go to: For all pictures, E. Paterson, 


Maria MacAuley is from Derry, Ireland and has a degree in Celtic Languages. She is married to the love of her life, and they live in relative peace with two cats.

She has a secret wish that her husband will investigate his Nordic family tree further and whisk her off on a longboat to Hammerfest to view the Northern Lights.

If Maria were to choose her favourite tense, it should be the subjunctive, and is always keen to discuss same over a pint of Guinness.

~*"No portion of this story may be copied or shared without the direct permission of the author."*~

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