This time around on Medieval Monday our theme is simply Author’s choice. Each author get to choose their own theme–celebration, food, betrayal–everything is on the table.
I have chosen a celebration–a wedding and more particularly a wedding night–for my snippet and today’s excerpt ends this theme.
He skimmed his hand over her breast and tweaked the nipple, drawing a loud gasp.
“Thomas!” The outrage in her voice would have brought a laugh from him had his need not grown so great. But it worked on the waiting courtiers, for their whisperings increased. So now ’twas time to finish the deed.
He rose over top of her, his weight carried on his elbows, his length pressing her down. Placing his lips next to her ear, but speaking in a normal voice, he announced, “Do not fret, sweet. ’Twill hurt but a moment.”
Beneath him, Alyse gasped. “But, Thomas—”
He strained forward and bit her on the shoulder.
“Thomas!” Alyse’s shriek sounded shrilly in the darkness.
He clamped his hand over her mouth and whispered, “Shh.”
The courtiers burst forth with clapping, congratulations, and laughter. Some of the men shouted encouragement to him, and he chuckled, though did not reply.
When he slid his fingers away from her mouth, she lay still a moment then asked, “Is it over now?”
He peered down at her, though he could not see her face. “Not yet.” He sighed and began to rub his cock against her belly. Not the best to be hoped for on a wedding night, but it would have to serve.
“You may remember the night of the banquet. ’Twas not done in one stroke, I think.” She stilled beneath him, though he continued to slide against her exquisite flesh. “I need to spill my seed, both for proof on the sheets and for my own ends.” He nuzzled her neck. “As you can feel, you have set my passions aflame, wife, and though ’tis nay you say tonight, ’twill not always be so. I will stand ready whenever you say aye.”
She slipped her hands around his neck, whispered, “Thank you, Thomas,” and kissed him.
The unexpected caress, coupled with his strong thrusts, sent him over the edge. He cried out as he spilled himself, determined to the last to convince the witnesses their marriage was truly consummated. He rolled off her and lay panting, listening to the applause he damn well deserved.
Thomas lay there a moment then the curtains stirred and a light appeared. Alyse squeaked and dove beneath the sheet.
Patrick Sullivan shoved a goblet of wine into Thomas’s hand. He took it and drank deeply. When he had drained the cup, he wiped his mouth and proclaimed loudly, “Aye, marriage is thirsty work. Best leave a bottle or two of this good Bordeaux, Patrick, lest I find myself with a mighty thirst come morning.”
“Do you think two bottles will be enough then, Thomas?”
The courtiers laughed and several began to drift out of the chamber. Thank Christ.
Thomas grinned at his friend. “Leave three for good measure.” He handed him the goblet back, and the young man chuckled and withdrew, plunging him into darkness once more. He eased himself back onto the mattress and lay listening.
“Thomas?” Alyse’s quiet voice sounded loud in the mounting silence.
“Aye, my sweet?”
“What are we going to do about—”
“Shh.” He grabbed her hand and squeezed it to caution her.
They waited until the silence was complete then Thomas poked his head out of the curtains. One candle shone on the table amid bowls of roses and the three bottles of wine. He smiled at that then slid to the floor and went in search of the pitcher and washing water. After cleaning himself, he performed the same service for Alyse, taking the candle to light his way. She lay relaxed on the pillows and looked serenely at him as he washed her. No blushes rose to protest the sight of her nudity. Apparently, progress had been made.
“Thank you, Thomas.”
“There is no service I would not do for you, my lady.” He bowed low, hoping to coax a smile from her.
She sat up, shooting a hand out to capture his. “What can we do about the sheets? They have your seed, but not my blood.”
He patted her hand then strode to the mantelpiece. He searched until he found the implement he sought and brought it back to the bed.
“Open your legs, my sweet.” At her astonished look he laughed, took the small paring knife, used to trim candlewicks, in one hand and her finger with his ring upon it in the other. With a swift cut, blood welled up on the pad. Thomas smeared the dark red stain between her legs, squeezed the finger again, and added more to the sheet.
“Now we can truthfully say ’tis your blood upon the sheets and none other.”
She smiled and patted the mattress beside her. “Come to bed, husband. It has been a strange night.”
He extinguished the candle and climbed into bed. He settled himself next to her and, when she did not flinch from his touch, nestled her head upon his breast. “’Tis not over yet.”
The worst betrayals come from within.
After a night of passion with her betrothed, Sir Geoffrey Longford, Lady Alyse de Courcy is eagerly looking forward to her wedding. But when Geoffrey is forced to marry another, a heartbroken and possibly pregnant Alyse finds herself in her own private hell. She must either gamble with her reputation or marry someone she does not love.
A reputed connoisseur of women, Thomas, Lord Braeton, has dallied with many ladies of King Edward’s court, although he has favored none. However, as Geoffrey’s best friend, Thomas has sworn to serve and protect Alyse, an oath now sorely tested when he agrees to marry her—in name only—to guard her reputation. Yet, as they grow closer, and Thomas discovers Alyse’s sweet but spirited nature, he comes to desire a marriage in truth.
Can he overcome her memory of Geoffrey, or is Thomas doomed to burn with passion for a woman he can never possess?
B & N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/betrayal-jenna-jaxon/1118591851?ean=2940045674331&st=PLA&sid=NOK_DRS_NOOK+EBooks_00000000&2sid=Google_&sourceId=PLGoP75008&gclid=Cj0KCQiAkZHTBRCBARIsAMbXLhFw1jq_admU84sYoj0wegxOscJenia0p61hEc12mqj-BvpmsIWF9hcaAqwfEALw_wcB
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