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#a new black kefta
jomiddlemarch · 2 months ago
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Good morning, Ravkan Fashion Squad! Here’s an entry for a sleek kefta upgrade for Alina, whether or not she is the Tsaritsa of Ravka, the General’s Bride, or some other, to-be-determined title that reflects her decision not to retreat to the orphanage at Keramzin with Mal.
I love the lines on this and the pleats and don’t forget those gloves!
@orlissa @montmartre-parapluie @vesperass-anuna @fericita-s @theburnbarreljester
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atlas-of-a-human-soul · 5 months ago
Draw your swords, pt. 5
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Summary: A very special dinner brings a very special moment for the Darkling and his wife.
Warnings: angst, sexual innuendoes, swearing, bit of fluff
Part one // Part two // Part three // Part four  
She felt caught in the riptide, finding it hard to stay upright. As the daughter of a general, Y/N had seen so many evils, so much hurt, yet she never buckled under pressure.
Staring at the empty spot beside her, she laid there while battling shadows in her head. So filled with rage, she wondered who she’s becoming as a part of her longed to feel his touch. Perhaps he was right, she’s a foolish girl who is trying to win a game where the rules are nonexistent.
Having stayed awake most of the previous night, she didn’t expect trouble sleeping. With a heavy sigh, she abandoned the bed they shared – it felt too intimate to remain there now. They’ve only ever kissed and it was never planned nor did it happen in the very bed she felt is so incredibly vast, so lonely and cold when he didn’t stay there with her.
Pacing the room as she saw his shadow do the night before, Y/N couldn’t help but wonder if he had trouble sleeping alone too. It was less than a full week since they married and she already cursed the smallest part of her that seemed to care for him.
Men are easy to love. A woman’s heart was made to care and love those near her. Mistaking love and trust is what a woman should never do. Love and trust are separate entities, one is given, the other must be earned.
Remembering her mother’s words eased her self-loathing. If she dared to love the Darkling, it wasn’t entirely under her control. Trusting him was different. She wasn’t as naïve as to allow the echoes of her heart dictate what her mind long acknowledged – he isn’t trustworthy.
And as the stars rise in the sky, she paced the room tirelessly. Arguing with herself, she paid no mind to the night sky she loved so much. If she had, Y/N might have realized a man with dark skies for eyes had trouble looking away from her shadow.
Exhausted, Y/N rose with the dawn. She had barely scraped up a few hours of decent sleep, tormented by his words even in dreams.
“Enter”, she yawned as Genya readily walked inside. The maids rushed to the bed, willing to change the bed sheets they couldn’t last time as Y/N had sent them away.
“Stop!” She exclaims as they reach Kirigan’s side of the bed, a slightly panicked look on her face relaying uncontrollable desires she had no chance of understanding.
Frowning, Genya licked her lips. While Y/N wasn’t sure what caused her outburst, she believed to know the root. “Leave us. You will be asked to change the sheets when Y/N desires it.”
Swallowing thickly, Y/N turned away. “I’m sorry.”
“Don’t be”, Genya mussed. “We have a dinner to prepare you for.”
“Yes, of course.” Y/N managed a smile, briefly looking to Genya. “I’ll be alone which gives me a perfect chance to find new allies.”
Blinking fast, Genya’s frown deepened. “I’m not sure who could ally with us in the Palace. Everyone’s charmed by our General. If you’d just work with him, they would all be with you too.”
“He works for the emperor.” Y/N reminded her.
Running her hands through her hair, Y/N didn’t know if she could ever trust him enough to tell him the truth. Her plans, her fight, it’s her life’s work. She came into that palace with intention of burning it down. The emperor must die and anyone else who’d fuel the flames of war must perish along with him. The war had claimed her mother’s life, of thousands of humans and Grisha alike, Y/N aimed to end it. And to end it, she had to destroy those who started it, those who refused to implement equality between species, as Kirigan called them. Humans and Grisha must be seen equally worthy, they must ally or they will be exterminated like vermin by surrounding enemies.
She grieved for her mother every day, even now as a decade had passed. Grief is really just love one cannot give to the other. It’s all the unspent love, gathering in the corners of her eyes, the lump in her throat and inside the hollowed heart that’s trying to beat in her chest. If her sorrow was but snow that could melt with coming spring, she’d shake it off her shoulder and be done with it. It doesn’t just disappear or heal with time, she could not just let it go and forgive. Y/N survived the loss of her mother by making a vow, one she was closer to fulfilling.
“Should I prepare your usual kefta?” Genya asked, holding the blue one over her forearm.
Shaking her head, Y/N turned to her with a smile. If she wants to succeeded, she must use all weapons at hand. Being the General’s wife is one of the weapons at her disposal.
“I was thinking about a different color for tonight.”
“How different are we talking?”
Smirking, Y/N’s eyes flickered to Kirigan’s kefta. “Black.”
“No one wears black but Kirigan”, Genya reminds her.
“Until he married. I believe I’m allowed to wear his color.”
Pinching the bridge of her nose, Genya sighed heavily. “Alright. As long as you allow me to make a few modifications.”
Anticipating the dinner, Y/N felt like a goddess in the kefta Genya had crafted for her. It fit her perfectly, adjusted just above the waist as it properly accentuated her curves. The closed collar wrapped around her neck, fallen stars creating a golden woven blaze as a necklace, while moondust adorned the long, skin tight lacey sleeves. The bottom acted as a floor length dress with a long slit revealing skin up to middle of her thigh.
Entering the room with her head held high and Genya on her hand, Y/N felt even more confident about the eclipsed sun stitched across her heart. It was bound to attract attention if the rest of her makeshift kefta inspired dress didn’t.  
The moment she took a step inside, everybody’s head turned. The chatter died down, replaced by astonished gasps of pure awestruck admiration.
“I believe you’ve created a masterpiece”, Y/N whispers to Genya whose smile widens.
“You are what makes it so spectacular”, Genya winks.
“Don’t be modest. We both know it’s not in your nature.”
Giggling, Genya nods, “You’re right. I’m brilliant and this”, she steps aside to give her a once over again, “You are proof.”
Pursing her lips, Y/N felt her cheeks darken. Her plan was to draw attention so any potential ally she speaks to would be more inclined to accept her request, but she didn’t expect for everyone to stop and stare.
Tugging her by the arm, Genya pulled her closer. “You’ll never guess who is here”, she spoke in a hushed tone, looking to the left as the rest of the guests began speaking again and the music played softly in the background.
Following her line of view, Y/N’s heart came to a near stop as her eyes locked on his.
“Wasn’t he supposed to leave last night?” Genya whispers, but Y/N could hardly speak.
Breath caught in her throat, Y/N stared back at Kirigan who seemed to be just as breathless. She looked like a dream, a golden bird that carried all the happiness of the world on its wings.
“He didn’t”, Y/N looked away, knitting her eyebrows. “Why didn’t he”, she tried to finish her initial thought, but she couldn’t. If she spoke of the sudden ache that settled after the initial shock of his presence dispersed, she’d hate herself more. She’s weak if her feelings are hurt by a single night spent alone in a bed. She was certain now. She is foolish.
“You won’t be able to network tonight”, Genya’s frown made Y/N chuckle.
“You’ve been frowning so often since we met.”
Shrugging, Genya leaned in discreetly. “I can afford a few worry lines. I’ll just erase them later.”
Playfully rolling her eyes, Y/N smiled brightly. She would not allow Kirigan to dampen her mood. He can stay on his side of the room and she won’t spare him a single glance.
“I’ll test the waters”, Genya promised, “If I find anyone that we can work with, we can test their loyalty later.”
Glancing over Y/N’s shoulder, Genya’s eyes widened ever so slightly.
Frowning lightly, Y/N glanced at what has her so perplexed only to huff in frustration.
“Black suits you”, the Darkling compliments her. Holding out a hand for her to take, he glances at his open palm before raising his brow. He’s challenging her.
Looking around, she realizes everyone’s waiting for her reaction. As he told her once before, they may not be a love match, but their arrangement must seem successful to the unsuspecting eye.
“Dance with me and pretend they don’t exist”, his voice softened and she couldn’t believe this is the same man who so cruelly baited her, branding her as foolish earlier. How can he act as if nothing happened when she was still reeling from it? Not that he’d know, she always put care in every move she made around him.
She placed her hand on the palm of his, holding her breath as she chained her gaze to the abyss in his. There’s no going back, she thinks, nearly shuddering as he places his free hand on her hip.
“I thought you were gone by now”, she mussed. Choosing to take control of the conversation, she kept her neck straight as it secured a proper distance between their faces.
“We had a slight delay”, he said, “I’ll be gone tonight.”
Humming, she swallowed thickly. Avoiding looking at others, she remained in a staring match with her husband.
“How did you sleep?” The Darkling smirked, watching her eyes narrow at him.
“Quite well. Did you enjoy sharing your bed with someone else?” While her voice seemed cold and unattached, her words were anything but.
“Do I detect a hint of jealousy there?” Pursing his lips, he nearly laughed as she stepped on his foot. “I’ll take that as yes.”
“I’m merely concerned how it would look if word of you sleeping elsewhere got out. I prefer my pride and honor untouched and if you choose to find a lover, I should assume you’ll be discreet.”
Licking his lips, the great general didn’t laugh at her or sneer. There was no angry squinting or vile words. For once, he had a serious expression on his face that had nothing to do with the army or their arguments.
“I’m not the kind who would seek a lover while married. Even if the marriage is a mere arrangement.”
Scoffing, she clenched her jaw as he pulled her waist closer to him. 
“How many lovers have you taken?”
He raised a brow, “That’s a horrible question.”
“Because you lost count?” She narrows her eyes, the lips he found himself so fascinated with formed a thin, red line.
He doesn’t respond, so she tried again, “Why have you not married before?”
Now he looked amused, “That’s even worse!”
Shrugging, she smirks, “Well, ask me a question then! If all mine are so awful, let me hear yours.”
“Do you think I’m a very good liar or a very unlovable being?” Slowly pulling her body flush against his, Darkling looked deep into her eyes. “I’ve never loved anyone and I’ve manipulated everyone who has fallen in love with me. So?” Inhaling sharply, he watched a disarray of emotions cross her face as he asked again, “Liar or unlovable?”
“A liar. Because you are lying, not just to me but yourself.” Her breathing is shallow, strained even. “You have a heart, General, but you’re cowering like a scared little boy instead of just facing the facts.”
“And what are those?” His voice is darker as are his intentions.
If they were alone, she was certain he’d be kissing her lips now. For some reason, it seemed he enjoyed their arguments. He liked it when she fought him almost like he didn’t know any other form of affection.
“That you care. You care and you hate yourself for it.” Stopping their dance, she managed a faint smile. “But don’t worry, I’m not spending my time waiting for you to accept it.”
Brushing his fingers across the left side of her face, he cocked his head ever so slightly, “Is it possible you’ve got this all wrong? From where I stand, you’re the one who cares – perhaps a bit too much? Let me remind you, this marriage is a sham. You are my wife, but I do not love you, I do not care for you and if you were killed right in this very spot, I would avenge you but solely for the arrangement to remain unsullied.”
Nodding, more to herself than him, she took a step back from him. For the first time ever, she drew back. “For once, we’re on the same page of the same book.”
The music stops. Looking to the man clinking his glass, Y/N’s lips part. She didn’t even realize it, but too often she entirely forgoes breathing in Kirigan’s presence.
Taking a deep breath, she nearly laughs. Kirigan…General…The Darkling. She even called him husband, yet she never even heard his first name. How odd is it to marry a man whose first name is a mystery to you, she thought.
“If you’ll excuse me”, she nods curtly without sparing him a glance. 
Her seat at the dinner table was beside Genya, while Kirigan was placed all the way on the other side of the room. She smirked, satisfied she’ll have some peace during her meal. She never quite liked the table formation in a wide U form before, but she blessed the ones who created it on this evening.
Studying him from afar, she couldn’t deny the attraction she felt for him. It wasn’t some cosmic connection that she hoped she’d share with her husband, rather wishful thinking. Longing for him is out of the question. He may be the most handsome man she had ever seen, but it’s not at all something she’d thank the saints for. If he were less appealing, she’d at least be free of torment his looks bring. The devil is real and he’s not a goat like man as humans believed. There are no horns, no tails – he’s beautiful, a fallen angel, but an angel nonetheless.
“You’re staring at him again”, Genya speaks in a hushed tone, her smile audible.
“I’m not”, Y/N replies, “I simply looked over in a direction and he happened to be seated there.”
“Then why was that look on your face?” Genya raises an eyebrow.
“What?” Y/N asks, incredulous. “What look?”
“You have a certain way of looking at him”, she informs. Letting out an tired huff, Genya explains, “You look at him and it’s like you’re staring at the night sky littered with stars.”
Genya looks down before whispering, “You love night skies littered with stars.”
Rolling her eyes, Y/N stared at her food for the rest of the evening. One bite after another and her plate was quickly emptied. Her stomach felt like it would burst, but she didn’t care. Most people claim they can’t eat under stress, but she was the opposite – her appetite only grew.
“He’s standing up”, Genya informed her and despite wishing she remained impassive, Y/N’s eyes shot up to where he was sitting.
With a lump at the back of her throat, she watched him as he headed to the door. A part of her hoped he’d be decent enough to bid his farewell, to acknowledge her at least. That part of her needed to be destroyed, she decided. It’s the part of her that would ruin her mission and for what? If she truly wanted to, she could have him on his back and under her. If she wanted him, he’d be hers – at least his body would. The principle she held onto was more important and so, she swallowed thickly and looked to her empty plate in order to stop her weakness from showing.
As she looked away, the Darkling looked back at her from across the room. He felt a strange tightness in his heart and once he saw she didn’t follow him with her gaze, his heart dropped. Furrowing his eyebrows, he kept his gaze on her for a while longer – her beauty was unmatched by anything he had ever seen. White looked good on her, every color did – but black fabric hugging her curves could bring a dead man back to life.
With a heavy heart and frown etched on his face, the Darkling turned his back and left the room, the Palace, the strangest, most beautiful creature he ever laid eyes on.
He carried her in his thoughts ever since. It aggravates him how quickly she’s gotten under his skin. Most of the month before their marriage was finalized was spent in petty comments about their armies or their distaste for one another. She was insufferable, maddening and entirely different from what he expected.
And yet, even then, the Darkling hoped she’d lose her patience and either leave or tell him she loves him. If she left, he’d be free of her and the shackles of an undesirable marriage, but if she told him she loves him, perhaps he’d believe her. If he knew there was ever a possibility of her loving him, he’d dare assume he might be deserving of love – because she may have dubbed him a liar, but he believes himself to be unlovable too. He never saw the point in allowing himself to feel a thing for her when it would be futile, wasted emotions on a woman sworn to hate him.
Once he was done chasing a rumor of a stag up north, the Darkling had to accept it too was a futile. Going after a legendary animal wasted so much of his time that he couldn’t even believe how foolish he’s become too. The stag must not be real after all.
Approaching Little Palace, he felt almost eager to run up to their shared chambers and see her. Even if she’d likely have a few choice words for him, he hoped he could make her blood boil just to hear her speak. He’d never admit it, but he missed someone he could converse with without dying of boredom.
“General”, Genya rushed to Kirigan who nearly growled at the distraction. However, Genya seemed distraught, panicked enough to draw his attention.
Swallowing thickly, she wiped a stray tear slipping down her cheek. “It’s Y/N.”
His heart stops at the sound of her shaky voice, his jaw clenching before speaking. “What happened? Is she alright?”
“She went for a ride this morning and she hasn’t been seen since.”
Darkling’s gaze hardens as he grips Genya’s arms and shakes her lightly. “What do you mean?!”
“We sent riders after lunch, because I was worried she missed two meals already”, gasping for air, Genya’s tears made tracks, “The snow covered her tracks.”
She left me, he thought. She deemed me unlovable, unworthy. She left.
“They managed to find her mare”, Genya continues through tears, “It was decapitated and left in the woods.”
“Woods?” He frowns, wondering why she’d stray from the meadow and then he realized. He’s the one she rode into the woods with. She must have thought the woods were safe. They were at the time, only because he was with her and he’d never let any harm come to her.
“There were signs of struggle, but the snow is making it hard for us to track them.”
Releasing a visibly shaken Genya, he grunts. Biting his lower lip, he paced before her as his hand ran through his hair. She never saw him so worried, so mad before. He looked like a man walking a fine line – a line between madness and sanity.
“Call everyone”, he orders, “We must find her.”
Exhaling in relief, Genya smiled as Ivan emerged, having heard everything.
“Why would we do that?”
A pause ensues as the Darkling takes a step toward Ivan. “I haven’t made a promise in so long”, he spoke but in truth, it’s been hundreds of years since he made anyone a promise. “I promised her I’d protect her.” His voice was ragged, but controlled. “So I’m making a new promise right here, if they harm a single hair on her head, I will end them all. I will do it with a smile on face and I will bathe in their blood!”
They took her from him and he had every intention of ripping the world apart with his bare hands and for once, the thought of how far he’d go for that insolent woman didn’t frighten him. He barely knows her, he certainly doesn’t love her, but Saints help those who touched his wife.
Tags: @bruxa0007​ @rangotangomango​ @kaitlyn2907​ @thestoryofmylife9​ @shelivesindaydreamswme​ @hxrgreeves​ @safetyhtom​ @kaqua​ @savannah-elliott​ @all-art-is-quite-useless​  @azure23x​ @girlmadeofavocados​ @ashdab2611​ @acciorudolphx​ @ladyblablabla​ @wckedheart​​ @xceafh​ @sanna2020​ @tarkanelima-blog​ @takethee​ @mellifluous-cosmos​ @marvel-ousnesss​ @tea-effect​ @starlightofsolaria​ @p3nny4urth0ught5​ @blackbirddaredevil23​ @sarcastic-and-cool​ @slytherinsbiggestproblem​ @within-thehollowcrown​ @notthatchhavi​ @musicconversedance​​ @astrosmayhem   
Part 6
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theshadowkingsqueen · 6 days ago
War & Flowers
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Pairing : The Darkling x Reader
Word Count : 430
Warnings : None
The door slammed shut behind you as you entered the war room. Your nose was freezing and your teeth were chattering uncontrollably. Aleksander looked up from the reports he was frowning over and raised a brow at your state. You just smiled sheepishly and placed the flower filled basket you were carrying on the table. It looked out of place among the war figurines.
“You shouldn’t go outside in such harsh weather,” he scolded you lightly.
“I thought grisha didn’t get sick?”, you asked, amused. 
“Doesn’t mean you have to go to the gardens to pick flowers when it’s freezing outside,” he rolled his eyes.
“Yes, I should just hole myself up in a room full of things related to war. Cozy,” you said.
He shook his head and moved his attention back to the reports. You moved to sit on the arm of his throne-like chair.  You were idly running your fingers through his thick black hair when an idea struck you. You bit your lip to hold back a laugh as you took out a few pansies from the pocket of your kefta. You carefully tucked the flowers in his hair, one by one. He was so engrossed in the report that he didn’t even look up. Or maybe he had just gotten very used to you messing with his hair. You loved it.
You were just fixing the last one when someone knocked at the door.
“Come in,” Aleksander called out.
“Wait no-”, you tried to stop the person but it was just Ivan. Aleksander looked up at you finally and you tried not to let your gaze wander to the flowers that decorated his head.
“Everything alright?,” he asked.
“Of course,” you replied, trying to keep a straight face. Ivan walked in, holding yet another file in his hands to show Aleksander.
“What is it, Ivan?,” asked the general.
“We received new information from the Fjerdan borders that--,” Ivan broke off, noticing the many accessories in his hair. He quickly looked at you with his mouth hanging slightly open and his face red.
You couldn’t control it anymore. The sight was hilarious. Ivan was staring at his boss looking completely dumbfounded. Aleksander was looking confused, staring at Ivan and wondering why he was looking so dumbfounded. You burst out laughing.
“What is wrong with the two of you?”, Aleksander asked exasperatedly. You were unable to answer him as you were laughing too hard.
But the darkling got his answer soon enough when one of the bright colored flowers fell from his hair into his lap.
General : @fific7 @skyofficialxx
Ben Barnes : @blackbirddaredevil23​
Let me know if you want to be added or removed!
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allegra-writes · 3 months ago
"Favourite Crime"
Part I: You'll meet a tall, dark stranger...
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Aleksander Morozova x Reader
A Shadow and Bone, Six of Crows AU.
General audiences
Warnings: None. Eventual smut.
You weren't stupid, you knew exactly who you worked for. You knew the exact reason why you made three times more as a barista here than you would anywhere else. The reason why even the most unsavoury characters in the city made wide berths to avoid you when they saw the short kefta style jacket of your uniform, or why no one at "The Six of Crows Cafe" seemed even remotely concerned about how slow business was, even when you rarely, if ever, saw more than a couple customers inside the shop at a time. 
Yeah, you knew exactly who you worked for. At least in theory, since you were lucky to say you had never met them, met him, in the flesh: The Grisha, the Ravkan Mafia, the owners and scourge of Hell's Kitchen, led by the infamous Aleksander Morozova, the Darkling, a real life monster, as mysterious as he was vicious.
Were you proud of being a small part of a money washing operation for the mob? Of course not, but beggars -or in this case, a runaway with more secrets than dollars to her name- couldn't be choosers, and this was the only job that, courtesy of Inej, you knew wasn't going to perform any background check. 
Plus, the health insurance was amazing. 
And, you had to admit, the company wasn't half bad either, you thought as you watched Jesper perform a series of theatrical juggles, flipping syrup bottles and ceramic mugs up in the air, putting on a show, vegas' bartender style, much to your entertainment... and Kaz's complete exasperation. 
You clapped, as the two bottles landed flawlessly upright on the counter. Jesper bowed, getting up just in time to catch the mugs' handles with his index fingers, rolling them around as if they were revolvers.
Kaz rolled his eyes, unimpressed,
"You break it, you clean it, Fahey" He sentenced. As if on queue, one of the mugs escaped Jesper's precarious grip, hitting the floor with a crash. 
"I know, I know. I'm on it, boss" The lanky brunet saluted, disappearing through the door to the backroom, not even apologizing for his mishap. 
"Wha-" You were left sputtering, "How did you know that was gonna happen?"
Kaz' voice was impassive as always, but you could catch the slightest of quirks at the corner of his mouth, the one you had come to associate with fondness or at the very least amusement, as he replied,
"The same way I know he's back there playing online poker instead of getting that broom" 
You shook your head,
"Why am I even surprised?"
"You're just new" Kaz comforted you, "Once you're here long enough, you'll realize the only surprising thing about Jesper and his gambling, is when he wins" 
You were about to reply something undoubtedly smart, probability laws or something along those lines, when he walked in, robbing you of all coherent thought for a few seconds. 
It wasn't your fault, you would tell yourself later, once he was gone and the air filled your lungs easier, blood flow to the brain restored. He looked like what you imagined it would look like if a male model and a greek deity had a child: features artfully chiseled by some God who obviously loved him, angular jaw embellished by a dark stubble that probably took a considerable amount of skill and time to get just right, luscious dark locks slicked back, shorter on the sides in a style not dissimilar to Kaz' -and much as it pained you for your friend, it was clear who pulled it off better- legs that seemed to go on forever, inside the flawlessly tailored pants of his obviously expensive three piece suit. 
But the most striking thing about him were his eyes: two pieces of the clearest obsidian you had ever seen, shining like twin stars in a pit of pitch black. 
He was beautiful.
You had never thought of a man as "beautiful" before.
A little voice at the back of your head whispered you probably never would again.
Your boss tensed beside you, and you didn't have to ask to know the reason, the newcomer was grisha. You hadn't needed the glimpse of the gun at his waist to realize that, the way he commanded the room before he even said a word was more than enough, his presence seeming to fill the entire cafe. Even then, standing with the counter between you two, he had every little hair on your body standing on end, like he was invading your personal space. 
"Good afternoon" The male model talked, and his voice was every bit as deep and seductive as you thought it would be, "Brekker," he squinted a little at you, "new girl"
Through the corner of your eye, you saw your boss clench his jaw, tension radiating out of him. It unnerved you. Kaz was always cool and collected, detached even. You had seen him stare down larger and more dangerous looking thugs with nothing more than boredom in his eyes. Yet for some reason, this stranger was making him nervous, you didn't like it.
However, offending the handsome and obviously powerful grisha in front of you didn't seem like the most clever idea, so you decided to take charge of the situation.
"Good afternoon, sir, what can I get you today?" You inquired, customer service voice and smile firmly in place. 
There was a slight tilt, the barest hint of a quirk on the grisha's lips when he replied.
"I will have a venti caramel macchiato. Double, with an extra pump of syrup. Please." He added as an afterthought.
"Alright," You slowly started to type the order in the register, "that would be four shots of espresso and five pumps of syrup, is that ok?"
He hummed, apparently thinking it over,
"Add another extra shot and a couple energy packets" 
"I'm sorry, sir" you really were, in your experience it was never a good idea to stand between a customer and his demanded amount of caffeine, "for legal reasons, we can only add one packet per drink…"
This time, he definitely smiled.
"For legal reasons, huh?" 
You bit the inside of your cheek to stop a smile of your own, the irony of the situation not lost to you. 
"Yes, sir"
He sighed, dramatically,
"The law is the law, I guess. Who am I to break it?" 
"No idea, but I would like to know." He arched a brow and you felt yourself flush, "For the cup, I mean" You quickly added, black marker already posed over the paper cup. 
He seemed to mull it over for a moment, before finally deciding. That wasn't suspicious at all, of course.
"Aleks. My name is Aleks" 
"Ok, let me just-"
A cup was placed on the counter between you, making you jump. When had you gravitated so close to eachother?
"Here you go," Kaz practically barked, "Aleks" 
Aleks smile turned into a smirk,
"Impeccable service as always, Brekker. Might have to stop by more often…"
"Please, feel free not to"
You threw him a scandalised look, but Aleks ignored him as he handed you a hundred.
"Keep the change"
"Sir, it's too much, we can't-"
"It's not a tip," He explained, "that's for your silence…"
"My silence? What-" You could never finish your question, as he leaned in, closing the space between you, until there were only a few inches left. Until you could feel his hot breath on your face. Reaching out, he grabbed one of the energy packets you kept behind the register, giving you a wink before stepping back.
"The deal is the deal?" He asked. You gulped.
"The deal is the deal"
With that, and one last smirk for good measure, he turned around and left the store, as graciously and silently as he had entered. 
You didn't know how long you would have spent like that, still stunned, staring after Aleks long after he was gone, if it hadn't been for Jesper choosing that moment to dance back into the store. Literally. 
"Whooo! Smut like butter, like criminal undercover, gonna pop like trouble walking into your heart like that… What's with the long faces? It's a bright sunshiny day in New York and Jesper is on a roll! Gosh, I love this song, y/n dance with me!" 
He didn't even wait for your reply before sweeping you into his arms, twirling you around as he sang out loud to the shop's music.
"...High like the moon, rock with me, baaaaby. Know that I got the heat, let me show you cuz talk is cheap" 
You found yourself chuckling despite yourself when he dipped you,
"I guess you finally won, huh?"
He grinned his most charming smile,
"I have no idea what you're talking about, babe"
"Sure you don't. Let go of me, you savage!" You laughed. 
"Never!" The handsome boy replied, but at least he straightened you up again, "If I did, then I'd had to dance with Kaz, and he has no rhythm whatsoever"
You let out a mock sigh, shaking your head.
"White boys" 
"White boys" He confirmed, before grabbing your hips with both hands, forcing you to slide across the floor with him so fast you almost lost your balance.
"What? Are we dancing or not?"
"Wait, you mean I have a choice?"
He snorted, not bothering to dignify your question with an answer before twisting you around again. 
"Side step right left to my beat…"
You rolled your eyes, but joined him anyway,
"High like the moon, rock with me baby"
"Know that I got that heat..." 
Hot strange grisha momentarily forgotten, you lost yourself in Jesper's contagious joy, never noticing Kaz' pensive, calculating stare.
… Or Aleksander Morozova's eyes still fixed on you from behind the tinted glasses of his black Audi, hiding him like shadows. 
To be continued...
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padme-parker · 5 months ago
Mizpah // the darkling x reader // ch 5
summary: You tumble a Grisha in more ways than one ;)
warnings: violence, fighting, cursing, SMUT, fingering, masturbation??, praise kink, not proofread. 
A/N: this is all over the place, forgive me y'all </3
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WHEN you awoke the next morning, you found a single glass of water placed on your night stand. Your head pounded as you tried to recall the blurred events from the previous night. All you remembered was catching up with Alina and then finally leaving her room. From there it was as if everything had muddled together to form a single incoherent memory. The sun had just begun to peak through your window.
While you were away last night, a servant must have stocked up your closet with clean clothes. They had mainly been a few soldiers' uniforms and some new nightgowns. Along with a few robes, each one as soft as a rabbit's fur. The gold kefta still remained in the dresser, collecting dust.
You changed out of your dirty clothes that you had slept in, and placed them in a neatly folded pile on the corner of your bed. After throwing on a clean uniform and putting your hair into a low bun, you rang for a servant. You asked her to bring breakfast to you. It seemed like there was no use in eating with the other Grisha. Where would you have sat? You weren’t a Corporalki, Etherealki, nor a Materialki. You certainly weren’t the Darkling either. There would be no place for you if you’d chosen to eat there with Alina.
Soon enough, a light knock echoed on the wooden door. “Come in!” You said, and the servant strolled in with a cart. She placed down a golden tray in front of you. You were served sweet pea porridge and fresh figs with a tall glass of water. You thanked the servant before she dismissed herself, leaving you to your food. There was another covering that laid on the tray, no plate under it. As you shoveled another spoonful of the porridge into your mouth, you took off the covering. Under the dome laid your weapons, cleaned of the dirt and blood that caked them. You placed your weapons back onto their respective places: a pistol and dagger at your hips, a knife securely tucked into your boot, and the last knife hidden away in your sleeve.
Just as you finished your food, another knock resonated in your uncomfortably quiet room. You beckoned them to come in. A Grisha with a red kefta came in, the black stitching signifying that he was a heartrender. You gave him a polite smile as he stepped in.
“Hello. I am Fedyor. I am to escort you to the training grounds today.” He explained.
“Oh no, it’s alright. I don’t need an escort. I know my way around the palace, thank you though.” You assured him. Sitting on the corner of your bed, you put on your boots. You were surprised to find them in the normal place you had put them, at the foot of your bed, near the very corner. It was a habit you had since you were a child. Every other orphan at Keramzin always placed their boots either to the left or right of their beds. It was understandably easier than leaving your boots where you normally had, yet you couldn’t shake the habit.
“The General himself required me to accompany you. As you must know, I cannot obey the General’s orders.” He stated. After lacing up your boots, you made your way to the tray your breakfast was on. You put the small plate that once housed the figs into the empty bowl of the porridge you were served. Picking up the tray, you began to walk towards the circular table near the door and left the tray there so it’d be easier for the servant to clean.
You turned to him, arms crossed on your chest as you sighed, “Fine.” You examined the new jacket you were issued, it wasn’t the same as the frayed one you were used to. The hem of your sleeves were intact, unlike your old one when you had picked apart the stitching when you were nervous. The only thing that you were particularly happy about was the fur lining. Yours had matted from being used so much and slept on.
“You know, it’s quite odd that you’re staying in the General's hall.” You let out a hm, questioning what he meant by that. “Usually guests stay in the guest hall. The General never permits for anyone to stay in his. He’s the only person allowed to sleep in this specific hall.” He whispered as we walked past a group of Materialki. They were huddled amongst themselves, whispering and giggling as they made their way to their training rooms.
“Maybe it’s because I’m Alina’s friend? Perhaps he feels like he needs to watch over me himself since he has also taken her under his watch.” You said. You took a deep breath of the crisp winter air as the two of you stepped outside.
“Perhaps. But why is Alina staying in the vezda suite? Wouldn’t it make sense for her to be staying in the General’s hall as well?” Fedyor did make a good point, if Alina was the most important Grisha of all, why wasn’t she across the hallway from the Darkling?
“It truly is a mystery I suppose. But if I were you, I wouldn’t question his choices.” You teased. You thought you might’ve offended him until he lets out a short laugh.
“Saints know what he would do if I had.” He replied, making you giggle. Your laughter died as you arrived at Botkin’s training area. Grisha alike had already been paired up and were sparring. Alina had been paired up with a girl she had mentioned last night, you couldn’t remember her name. Madia? No that wasn’t it. Narie? It wasn’t that one either. Noticing a late arrival, Botkin walked up to you.
“Botkin has never seen little girl before.” You tried to suppress the surprise you felt when you heard him refer to himself in third person. “Who is she?” He asked Fedyor. By now some people had stopped training to hear the conversation. You noticed Alina was still sparring with her friend, unaware of your arrival.
“She’s here as Alina’s guest.” At the mention of her name, the girl stopped fighting. Finally taking notice of your figure, she let out a surprised gasp.
“What are you doing here?” She asked as she came closer.
“Training. If I’m going to stay at the palace I don’t want to rot away and do nothing.” You said, rolling your shoulders to loosen up your muscles.
“First Army girl wants to train with Botkin.” His voice, although baritone and guttural, brought a strange comfort to you. “Choose your opponent.” You surveyed the crowd, looking for someone who could pose a possible challenge. Your eyes landed on a tan skinned girl with raven black hair, bangs framing her face perfectly. Her black eyes stared into yours, challenging you.
“Her.” You stated while nodding your head towards her. Botkin weaved his head in the direction you had nodded off to.
“Ah, star pupil, Zoya!” So this was Zoya, the girl who told Alina that she reeked of Keramzin. “I have trained her since she was ten.” The raven haired girl offered you a way out, which you immediately declined.
“Fighters ready?” You put your fist up, getting into stance. “And..Fight!” You waited for Zoya to come to you first. She walked up to you, her fists hung up. You circled each other, playing the waiting game. You were about to make a move when you saw Zoya moving her right fist towards your face. You ducked left, managing to move in time to avoid the punch. With her back still to you, you jammed your elbow into her side making her hunch over.
She came at you again, this time with more veracity and anger behind each swing. Except she didn’t land a single blow. You were able to avoid each one as you let out a giggle, staggering a few steps back.
“Is that all you’ve got, star pupil?” Your comment only seemed to spur her on more. She ran at you in full force, this time you let her land a hit on you for the fun of it. What you didn’t expect was for her to punch you so hard that she drew blood. You sniffled feeling a drop of blood come from your nose. You began your attack with a right hook followed by a left one. In return she used her arms to block each time, leaving her abdomen vulnerable.
You were able to land a hard blow or two before you found yourself briefly soaring through the air, your back meeting the hard wall that was originally ten paces behind you. You let out a wheeze as you feel one of your ribs break.
Botkin had begun to reprimand Zoya, looking at her you could feel her shame as she upset her mentor. You couldn’t help but smirk as she looked at you, at least now she knows how someone from Keramzin fights. Her gaze hardened, about to walk up to you once more before she was taken away by some guards.
“Oh my Saints, now the General is really going to have my head.” Fedyor said in a panic. He helped you stand as he called for a healer.
“I’m quite alright.” You ensured, but the wince in your face gave you away. Alina came running up to you, giving you a once over before taking you from Fedyor and into her embrace.
“You know you shouldn’t be doing that.” She whispered into your ear. “It’s too dangerous for you.” She made a movement to grab one of your cold hands, giving it a squeeze.
“Everything’s a risk for me, Alina. The Doctor made that clear.” When you were younger, you were diagnosed with a heart condition. It was nothing serious really, and only acted up once in a blue moon. The tugging and squeezing feeling only lasted for seconds, but the pain left you feeling unstable for hours after. “The risk is always worth it.”
“But what if one day its not?” She pulled away from you, resting her hands on your shoulders. “The Doctor himself said there was no cure for this, no remedy that could help.”
“It’s worth it if it means protecting our honor.” You replied honestly.
“I don’t need you to protect our honor.” She protested. “I need you to protect yourself. Even if that means backing down from a fight.” You remained silent as a healer began to work on you. Starting first with your broken ribs then moving onto your bloody nose. After a few minutes of sitting still, the healer finally told you that you could leave.
Alina and Fedyor accompanied you back to your room. “What do you think will happen to her?” You asked. Alina shrugged her shoulders as the heartrender went to respond.
“She will probably get reprimanded by the General too. Zoya knows not to use her powers while training. Respectfully, especially not against someone who isn’t Grisha.” He commented.
You must’ve really gotten under her skin then if she went against all those years of training and discipline. “Good. She needs to know her place.” You snarked. “Now I’d like to get some rest.” You glanced at Alina, her gaze unwavering. “Alone, please.”
“Are you sure?”
“Yes. I promise I’ll be fine. If I need help I can always call for the General.” You replied, placing your cold hand on top of hers and gave it a squeeze. With great reluctance, she nodded her head. Fedyor and her leaving to return to combat training.
As you close the door, you feel your resolve break. Wincing as the pain and exhaustion came back. As you grew up, your condition continued to tire you. You couldn’t fight nor run the same way you could two years ago. At this rate, you’d probably be dead in the next two years because of your heart condition. That was if the war didn’t kill you first.
The sun was nowhere near close to setting. You still had most of the day to kill yet you didn’t know what to do. You thought back to one of the places the Darkling had shown you, perhaps you could go to the library. Gathering whatever strength you had left, you returned to the calm and composed front you had always put on.
The walk there had been time consuming, nauseating even. But you were determined to snatch a book or two to read while you were cooped up in your room. The library of the Little Palace was grand, filled from floor to ceiling with various books. If you ever had the chance to visit the Grand Palace, their library would definitely be on a list of places of visit.
You ran your finger along the spines of the books as you walked through the shelves. There were two things that you loved most in your life: the feeling of the sun on your skin and the smell of books. Strangely enough, the smell of the books had reminded you of Keramzin in a way. Probably because you spent most of your childhood with your nose shoved into a book. Collecting two books, you were adamant on getting to your room in time to be able to sit in the sun and read a couple of chapters. All of a sudden the smell of incense and mildew had taken over your sense of smell.
“My Saints, where is that smell coming from..” You whispered to yourself. Unexpectedly you heard a shuffle behind you. Turning around you saw a greasy man in a robe.
“Hello, y/n.” Said the man.
“Do I know you?” You replied cautiously, reaching for the knife you had hidden in your sleeve.
“I am the Apparat, a priest. Advisor to the King.” He stated. Knowing who he was didn’t make you any less tentative, your fingers still gripped the handle of your knife.
“Okay...right. Nice meeting you. I’ll be on my way now.” You said, trying your best to move around him but he stopped you. He latched onto your arm that had been reaching for your knife, effectively rendering your weapons useless.
“Do you remember?” He acquired his answer from the confused look on your face, “Oh, soon you will remember. Everything will face into place.” You ripped your arm out of his rough hands and ran out of the library, never looking back.
When you were finally in your room, you threw the books onto the floor as you rushed to the tub. There hadn’t been any warm water around but you didn’t care. You filled the tub with lukewarm water as you began to strip yourself of your clothes. Skewing them across the floor as you picked up a velvet robe and tossed it on a nearby chair. Stepping in, you grabbed a loofah. Scrubbing yourself clean of the Apparat’s lingering touch. You scrubbed and scrubbed until your skin was raw. After dunking your head underwater to wet your hair, you picked up a soap. It smelt of lavender and honey. In the First Army, they had always given you a singular bar of soap to last you a week. Showers came scarce due to the fact that the soap practically diminished once it touched water. Gently lathering the soap in your hands, you cleaned your hair first. The repetitive circular motions of your hands had started to calm you down, almost lulling you to sleep. Quickly finishing off your hair and the rest of your body, you found yourself smelling good for the first time in a while.
Feeling satisfied enough, you let out a sigh, letting yourself relax as you rest your arms on the edge of the tub. It wouldn’t hurt to take a nap. You thought. After all, you fought a Grisha without the use of your weapons and came out somewhat victorious. You let your hair dangle outside of the tub to dry as you close your eyes, sleep taking over you.
“Stop it!” You screamed, you could feel someone splashing cold water at you. Wetting your hair and dress. “Aleksander, stop!” You said while laughing. You could hear him let out a laugh before coming up behind you and taking you into his embrace. He wrapped his arms around your belly as he rested his chin on your shoulder. The stubble from his face tickling you.
“How are you today, my darling?” He whispered into your ear, making you shiver. He began to pepper kisses up and down your neck, making your legs feel like jelly. Your hands flew to his in order to stabilize yourself.
“Good. But it could be better.” You teased, egging him on. One of his hands travels your hips, bunching up the fabric of your skirt to give himself better access. The other hand made its way to your core, ghosting past your eager bundle of nerves.
“Look at you, already so wet for me.” He shoved aside your underwear, plunging two of his fingers into your heat. He paused at the sound of your moan, “Taking my fingers so well.” He set an agonizingly slow pace, let out a few groans himself as he rubbed himself against you. His long fingers search for the spot he knew so well, the one that would make you mewl and fall apart in his embrace. He hits it once, twice, before extracting his fingers from you. He placed his slick covered fingers atop of your dry ones before guiding them back to your wet entrance. You were able to slide in with ease as he guided your movements.
“I can’t..” You breathed out, the feeling of his fingers and yours combined had been too much for you.
“Yes you can.” He purred, tilting your head with his own to get better access to your neck. “You’re almost there, I can feel it.” Just as he said that, he felt you briefly clamp down, signaling you were close. He guides your fingers deeper, nearing your g spot as his other hand lets go of your dress and goes to your clit.  
The action makes you come undone as you moan his name repeatedly, your juices coating both his and your fingers. You let out a whine as he removes his fingers from you, only to place his hand into his mouth, sucking your cum off of him.
“Sweet, as always.” He gently grabs your chin and turns you to face him, his dilated pupils meeting yours. “Here, have a taste of yourself.” His words alone made another wave of heat pool at your core. He grabs your hand before inserting into your mouth. You wrap your lips around your fingers, staring into his slate gray eyes all the while. After lapping up your juices, you release your fingers with a pop!
Even in your dream state you could tell this man looked suspiciously like General Kirigan. They shared the same face structure, their cheekbones rested at the same angle. His eyebrows were as perfectly sculpted as the General’s. Lashes equally as dark and long. The only difference was that the man-- Aleksander, had a near clean shaven face and his hair was grown out to reach his shoulders. The General had a beard and sported a slicked back look. Yet the two looked identical.
Your eyes searched his face, his body, for anything that could tell you anything. You spotted a mole near his right collarbone. Nearly hidden by the collar of his shirt, small but it would have to do. Without thinking, you reach up to grab his face to pull him in for a kiss.
“My Aleksander.”
YOUR doors opened with a bang, startling you from your sleep. The person entered without even knocking, alerting you to three possibilities: someone had broken in and now was here to kill you, you were being kidnapped, or the Darkling was here to brutally murder you. You let the first two options leave your mind, knowing how well guarded the Little Palace was. So there was no possibility for an intruder to get so far into the grounds. Yet the third option did little to ease your mind.
Realizing you were still in the tub, you got out. Not wanting anyone to see you naked. Not like it hasn’t happened before. You thought, thinking back to your time at Caryeva. You quickly threw on your robe, haphazardly tying it while you grabbed one of your knives and unsheathed it. You threw the knife just in time, the person emerging from the curtains being nicked by your blade before it landed on the trimming of the bathroom entrance.
“Oh my Saints, I’m so sorry…” The Darkling stared at you, surprise flicking on his features. “I didn’t hear you come in. I was asleep.”
You walked to the side, picking up a towel to clean up his wound. You dipped it into a bucket of clean water, wringing it out afterwards.
“In the bathtub?” You gave him a nod, a blush forming on your cheeks. “Well you certainly sleep wherever you can.” He joked. As you shifted closer to him, you felt that familiar wetness in your thighs. Fuck. You thought, your blush becoming deeper. You’d been so caught up with the idea of someone coming to kill you that you had forgotten about your dream.
“Are you alright?” It should’ve been you who was asking the question since you nicked him after all. He awaited your reply as you gently pressed the towel against the cut.
“I am. Nothing serious happened to me.” You replied, assuming he had heard of the events that had taken place earlier that day. “Are you?” You asked, “I mean, you seemed very alarmed when you barged in.”
“My apologies for that. You weren’t responding to my knocks or my questions. I’d assumed the worst.” He said, struggling to find the words. You didn’t know how to feel, in a way you were glad that he cared for your well being, yet it slightly made your gut lurch. You’d been here for less than a week and he seemingly cared more for you than Alina. Then again, you didn’t know what the two did behind closed doors. You stopped cleaning his wound, the bleeding had stopped. The two of you remained close, only an arms distance away from each other.
“Why do you care so much? After all, I’m only a guest here at the palace. I’m not a Grisha like you or everyone else here.”
“You're my guest. It’s normal for me to worry about my guests.” He explained. You crossed your arms over your chest, eyebrows furrowing as you listened to him.
“Yes, but..” You paused, “Yesterday I was Alina’s guest. Now today, I am yours. So which is it?”
“Whatever you’d like.” He whispered, taking a step closer to you. His gaze flickering to your lips then back to your eyes.
“Can I ask you a question?”
“You just did.” He replied, giving you a smirk that made you roll your eyes.
“Have we met before?” You asked, making the General freeze in his place. His posture goes rigid, you struggle to read the emotion on his face. “.. I could’ve sworn that we…” You doubled over, your left hand clutching your chest as your right hand flew to his shoulder. The pain had never hit you twice in a day. Not even twice in a month.
“Alina..g-get her.” The General called for a servant to fetch her along with a healer. In his panic, he swept you off your feet and carried you to the bed. He laid you upon it as he took your left hand into his. In a haze, your right hand began to wander, weakly pulling at the collar of his shirt. The pain went away as a moment of clarity came over you, General Kirigan had bared the same mole that Aleksander had. As you placed your hand on his face, the pain came rushing back.
Before you allowed yourself to give into the darkness that called you, a tentative whisper left your lips, your eyes searching his.
Mizpah tag: @all-art-is-quite-useless @devilxangel @musicconversedance @parabatai-winchester @runawayolives @tartiflvtte @rbg1933 @thatguppienamedbae @batgal96 @thebarisinhell99 @5hundreddaysofsummer @kaqua @queenseneschal @benbarnes-supremacy @princessofpersia96 @takethee @dontjinx-it @freakytillthemoon @amortentiaaaa @marvel-ousnesss @coolninjavoid @areomalfoy @pansysgirlfriend @universalirwin @leavejuliaalone @xx-winwin-wednesday-xx @honeyofthegods @lunamyangel @d-list-goddess @comphersjost@telepathdestiel @the-celestial-kitsune @thestoryofmylife9 @s-corpionem @pancakeisreading @sanna2020 @secretsandtinyshadows @savannah-elliott @maliasblue @tea-effect @disneyandharrypotter @futuristicpinklemur @tanyaherondale @the-puff-is-strong-with-this-one @hxgreeves @yourboiialucard @thereeallink @ladyblablabla @wolfieellsworld @p3nny4urth0ught5 @louweasleymalfoy @the-natureofme @itsloveroflife @oddlittleminx @within-thehollowcrown @itsfangirlmendes @heyyimlaynna @jgtfvhsg @gloriousmoneyrascalbiscuit @auggie2000 @itsnotquimey @jtownraindancer @sonnensplitter​ @sarcastic-and-cool​ @poulterfilms​ @spookybooisa​ @stickyknightflowerbailiff​ @hollandsweetie​ @yungkvte​ @evyiione​ @2023-padfoot @kawaiimarshmallow @nikki-sixx-is-daddy @sanktawylan @blackbirddaredevil23​
mizpah taglist closed </3
S.a.B. forever tag: @deceivedeer
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thebadgerclan · a month ago
Stop His Heart
Pairing: Aleksander Morozova x reader
Summary: Every time he sees you, you stop his heart...
A/N: Inspired by the line “You stop my heart from 50 feet” from Ben Barnes’ new song “11:11″ which you can listen to here 
Dress inspiration attached after fic
300 years.  Aleksander had been married to you for 300 years, and every single time he saw you, you took his breath away.  You were as beautiful, if not more, as the day he met you all those centuries ago, captivating his attention each and every time you walked in a room.  It didn’t matter if you were dressed in one of his t-shirts, fresh out of bed, or dressed up in your silk kefta, looking regal and serene, you were the most beautiful woman Aleksander had ever had the privilege of seeing.
Tonight, there was to be a ball.  The Morozovas had sat the Ravkan throne for 100 years, which was more than cause for celebration.  Aleksander glanced over his appearance in the mirror: his black kefta freshly cleaned, his boots shined to a mirror polish, his onyx wedding band on his left hand, his obsidian crown resting on his brow.  You were still sequestered in the bedroom with Genya, who was helping you dress for the celebration.
A few moments later, Genya emerged, shutting the door behind her.  She no longer wore servant’s colors, rather, Corporalki red, her kefta embroidered with blue, for her Tailor status, as well as black, showing her loyalty to the Morozova empire.  While she did Tailor you from time to time, as well as acting as a sort of lady’s maid, you made it clear that she was not a servant.  Rather, she was your advisor, your confidant.  
“She’s nearly ready,” she informed Aleksander, bowing to her king.  “Thank you, Genya,” Aleksander responded, dismissing her.  The Tailor took her leave, and Aleksander smoothed his hair.  His back was to the bedroom door, so he didn’t see you enter, only knowing you were there when you asked, “What do you think?”  Aleksander turned to face you, and his heart stopped its beating.
You stood just outside the bedroom door, an expectant smile on your face.  You wore a ballgown of black silk, the bodice lace.  Sleeves of lace trailed down your arms and past your hands, ballooning at your sides.  A band of black lace wrapped around your neck, allowing a look at your chest, but not exposing you.  Your hair fell in curls around your shoulders, your black diamond crown nestled in your curls.  Your eyes were shadowed in greys and blacks, lips painted a stark red.  Your wedding and engagement rings sparkled on your hand, diamonds in your ears.  
Aleksander approached you, still not breathing.  “I am unworthy to be in the presence of such a divine being,” he said, taking your hand, kissing it, lips lingering for a moment.  “You, my darling, are simple ethereal.  My beautiful Y/N, I love you so much.”  “Thank you, Aleksander, I love you too.”  He bent to press a kiss to your forehead, keeping his hands in yours.  “You stop my heart every time I see you, milaya, your beauty outshines every star in the sky.”  You smiled, hiding your face from your husband, feeling your cheeks heat up, but Aleksander tipped your chin up so he could look at you.
“I am the luckiest man in the entire world,” he said.  “I have the most beautiful woman in the world as my wife, to rule by my side.”  You stepped closer to your husband, resting a palm on his chest.  “Well, I have the most handsome man in all of Ravka as my husband,” you said, and Aleksander smirked.  “All of Ravka, not the world?”  “I don’t know, I saw a fairly nice looking Kerch merchant entering earlier.”  Aleksander laughed, pulling you in to kiss you, possessive and sweet all at once.  “Oh, you know I’m kidding, love.”  “I do, beautiful,” he said, pecking your lips again.  “Now, I believe we have a ball to attend, my queen.”  You grinned as you took his arm.  “We do, my king.”
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fific7 · a month ago
Evil Twins - Part 1
Billy Russo & Aleksander Morozova x Reader
Summary: When two worlds which have already collided then collide with yours - that’s an explosive situation.
A/N: This does not follow canon, it’s mainly a mix of fluff and angst with quite a lot of lemon zest 🍋 My Fantasy Punisher/Shadow and Bone crossover AU.
Warnings: 18+ NSFW due to sexual content including oral and unprotected* sex between consenting adults. Some drinking & swearing.
*Irl, please don’t go wild in the country without protection.
(My photo edit)
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New York City
Billy Russo awoke with a start, sitting bolt upright in bed and grabbing for his Glock. What the hell? Thunder was rumbling loudly overhead and he sighed, putting the gun back under his pillow and laying his head back down. It was probably the bright flash of the lightning followed by the beginning of the thunderclap that had awakened him.
He was just closing his eyes again when he spotted something, only vaguely visible in the dim light from outside, in the corner of his room. It was…. swirling?
Grabbing his gun again, he sat up and pointed the Glock at the corner. It was getting bigger. “You’ve got two seconds to show yourself before I blow your fucking head off,” he announced, calmly.
He squinted a bit to get a better look but it didn’t make much difference. What the fuck was it?! Smoke? He decided he had no choice and leant over, switching on the wall-mounted bedside light.
The… smoke cloud?… was still increasing, becoming bigger and blacker with every second. Then he saw the vaguest silhouette of a tall figure within it, moving towards him. He leapt out of bed, on the far side of it so it was between him and whatever the fuck this was.
»»————————————-———- ⚜ ———————————-————-««
Aleksander Morozova - or General Kirigan, the Darkling, the Black Heretic, the Starless Saint, whichever of his many names he decided to call himself at any given point in time - could see a tall figure brandishing some kind of strange gun at him as he began to emerge from the swirling shadows.
Following certain unfortunate incidents - including a huge and furious argument with his darling mother - he’d decided it would be politic to get out of Ravka for a while, much as he didn’t really want to. But this wasn’t where he should’ve ended up. What was this place?
He emerged completely from the shadows and immediately felt something bounce off his kefta. He heard a ‘ding’ and looked down at the wooden floor at his feet. A bullet.
Looking quickly back up, he saw that the man opposite him was glaring at him, eyes wide and unbelieving, gun still pointing at him. He also realised that looking at this man was like looking in a mirror.
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Billy was dumbfounded. He’d just shot the fucker! And the bullet had bounced off him. Fuck. He threw the gun down onto the bed and slid his hand under his other pillow, pulling out his Ka-Bar. No way he’d get past that.
He took a moment to have a good look at the dude opposite him.
Dressed in riding boots and some kinda long black tunic thing, with a black fur-collared full-length cape over it. What a freak! Was he a goth or something? But then he realised something even freakier…. this guy looked exactly like him.
»»————————————-———- ⚜ ———————————-————-««
The two of them were still contemplating each other, when finally Billy spoke. “Who are you? And what are you?”
Aleksander laughed. “Usually it’s me asking those questions.” Billy huffed, “You’re in my fuckin’ apartment, so just answer them!” He saw the guy draw himself up, and he said, “I am Aleksander Morozova, also known as General Kirigan, commander of the Second Army of the Grisha.”
“Means fuck all to me,” grunted Billy. “One name not enough for you? And why do you look like me? Are you some kinda shapeshifter or somethin’?”
“I have many names because I am centuries old. And I don’t know what a… shapeshifter?…is,” said the other, “…but I am the Shadow Summoner. And who are you? Where is this?” he waved a hand round at the apartment.
Billy scoffed, “Centuries old?!! Oh fuck off. You’re the same age as me by the looks of ya! I’m Billy Russo, ex-US Marine Lieutenant and now CEO of Anvil. That’s a security company, mainly staffed by ex-military vets. And this….” he also waved his hand around, “…is my penthouse apartment in New York City.”
Aleksander shook his head, “I have never heard of that place.”
Billy eye-rolled, “How can you not have heard of New York?!” he asked, incredulously. “And what the fuck is a Shadow Summoner?”
“It’s becoming obvious we are from two different worlds. I seem to have been diverted from my intended course, I don’t know why,” shrugged Aleksander. “Well maybe it’s time you took off to wherever it is you were headed for in the first place,” said Billy.
“It seems that I have been brought here for some specific reason,” replied Aleksander, “and it also seems I cannot leave for the moment, I have already tried.” He waved both hands around, firstly extending and then curling up his fingers, watching them closely as he did but it was clear that nothing at all was happening. “You see? Nothing. It is worrying to me. My shadows are no longer obeying my commands at present.”
Billy sighed and perched on the edge of his bed, “Great! Just fuckin’ great! This is just…! So when can you leave?” The other man spread out his arms, “I have no idea.”
»»————————————-———- ⚜ ———————————-————-««
Devon, UK
Way across the Atlantic, you were already hard at work in your little bookstore in Appledore, Devon. You had a snug apartment above the store and had filled it with lots of your favourite things. It was a cute little coastal town and you loved living there. The community was small and friendly especially in the winter months, only increasing in summer with all the tourists who came to stay. As long as you made a decent living during the holiday season - which you normally did - then winter was a much calmer, chilled time of year.
You added a final book to the new display in the centre of your store and stepped back to take in how it was looking. Yeah, not bad if you did say so yourself. It was comprised of a fantasy trilogy for young adults about some ancient guy who could summon up shadows, and was a bit of a villain from what you could tell from the story synopsis on the book covers.
Not your cup of tea, to be honest. Generally speaking, all types of action stories were more your thing - something with a bit of ‘va-va-voom’. In fact, you were looking forward to tonight when you’d decided you were going to sit down with a nice tub of ice cream and rewatch one of your favourite series. The one with a relentless avenging ex-Marine whose family had been killed and his psycho ex-Marines buddy. Who happened to be rather hot to your mind.
You sighed a little, heading back behind the counter. That was the only thing about Appledore. It was a lovely place, but there was a distinct lack of hot guys.
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New York City
Billy and Aleksander were sitting on separate sofas in Billy’s living area, eyeing each other warily. Aleksander had been trying to explain to Billy all about his world, the Grisha, the Fold, volcras, Ravka, the Sun Summoner, sand skiffs - as much as he could.
It had blown Billy’s mind, to be honest. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing. In turn, he’d explained all about his military career and the shitshow which had eventually developed once he’d come back to New York. Aleksander looked as equally confused as Billy.
Billy sighed, “I mean, what the hell are you gonna do? You don’t belong here. I need to go to work in a couple of hours. I’m not leaving you here so I’d need to take you to Anvil with me, and you sure as hell can’t go out looking like that.”
Aleksander looked down at his kefta which he’d unbuttoned. His cape was draped over the back of the sofa. “What is wrong with the way I look?” he huffed. “S’pose I could always say you were going to a Comic Con,” muttered Billy. “A what?” “A Comic Con. it’s where fans of fantasy comics go to have fun. They dress up as their favourite characters sometimes. I could always say it was cosplay.”
Aleksander shook his head, “I still don’t understand what you’re talking about. Are you saying I’d look out of place in my uniform? All the Grisha wear these,” he pointed at his kefta. “Not what we wear here,” said Billy, “…and I still don’t get why you look so much like me.”
“I have no idea!” said Aleksander, through gritted teeth, “I told you that already!” “Alright, alright! Calm down.” “I AM CALM!!!” roared the other man.
»»————————————-———- ⚜ ———————————-————-««
New York City
Slightly later that morning, Billy was showered, suited and booted and ready for work. He’d persuaded his uninvited visitor to put on a borrowed leather jacket of Billy’s over his kefta as Aleksander refused to take it off. He’d also made him put on a pair of black trainers, which he’d done very reluctantly. These two items had instantly transformed the freaky-looking guy into someone at least a little more acceptable to your average New Yorker.
Aleksander was wriggling around in the jacket, “It’s not very comfortable.” Billy heaved yet another large sigh - he felt like this was all he’d been doing this morning - “Look, just wear it! You’ll get used to it.” He noticed the other guy sniffing at the collar of the jacket, then his eyes lifted to Billy’s, “You wear perfume?!” “Men’s cologne,” snapped Billy, “or aftershave, as it’s also known because - guess what! - you use it after you’ve shaved!”
His fingers stroking his chin, Aleksander nodded, “Okay, that I understand. We do not use this perfume in Ravka.” “Cologne!” yelled Billy. “Fine, cologne then. Why don’t you like it when I call it perfume? That’s what it is, after all.” “Women wear perfume. Men wear cologne. Okay? Now c’mon, I’m gonna be late.”
Billy strode over to his front door and tried to open it. The handle wouldn’t budge. He shook it, rattled it, pulled the door handle back and forward, exerting more and more strength but nothing worked. He stood back from the door. “It won’t open,” he said, rather unnecessarily. He looked at Aleksander, “Is this you? Or something to do with you?” “No!” he protested, “I have nothing to do with this.”
A somewhat raspy female voice spoke from behind them, “No, but I do.”
The two men swung round, both gaping as they saw that there were what could only be described as rippling waves distorting the whole interior of Billy’s flat. The light had also diminished quite drastically and then they both saw a woman’s head and shoulders start to become defined and then fully visible in amongst the ripples. She seemed to float there at head height but she obviously wasn’t physically present.
“Mother!” exclaimed Aleksander.
»»————————————-———- ⚜ ———————————-————-««
Devon, UK
You snuggled down amongst the soft cushions on your sofa, tub of ice cream and spoon in hand and scrolled to the series you were looking for. It was quite gory in places but you loved it - except for the bit right at the end where the hot dude got killed. That made you sad although you couldn’t deny he definitely had psychopathic tendencies.
As you were looking for the one you wanted to watch, another series caught your eye in the ‘Suggested for You’ section. Hey, it must be based on that trilogy of books you had in the store right now. Maybe you’d give it a try after you’d finished your current one.
»»————————————-———- ⚜ ———————————-————-««
New York City
“Mother?” echoed Billy, “….what’s going on here?!”
The woman’s head swivelled towards him then back to Aleksander. “My two boys, together again. How sweet.”
“What!?” said the two men in tandem. She gave a bitter laugh, “How I managed to produce two such problematic children, I’ll never know.” “What are you talking about, Baghra?” ground out Aleksander. Billy was just standing there, dumbfounded and looking between the two of them when suddenly her glare focussed in on him.
“Maxim.” Billy returned her stare, “I’m Billy!” he corrected her. She shook her head, “You will forever be Maxim to me. And as I’m your mother, do not argue with me. Now…. no doubt Aleksander has been making a great fuss about how he’s many centuries old, has he?” “He did mention it,” said Billy, begrudgingly. She nodded, “I thought he might have. Listen to me, both of you. You are twins, so obviously you were born within minutes of each other. To me.” The two men exchanged glances, before looking back at her. “It became obvious to me that Aleksander - from a relatively early age - was going to cause himself and everyone around him nothing but trouble and strife, so I took a radical step.” “What did you do, Baghra?” questioned Aleksander.
“If you’d have patience, I’m trying to tell you!” she snapped, before continuing, “I got one of the few Heartrenders in existence at that time to take Maxim out of Ravka to a secret location. There, he placed him in long-term suspended animation. When you…” she pointed an accusatory finger at Aleksander, “….started all that nonsense with the Sun Summoner and hunting for the stag, I travelled with another Heartrender to where Maxim was, and brought him out of his enforced hibernation. I had to protect him as there was no guarantee you’d survive, Aleksander.” She stared at his scowling face and carried on speaking.
“He had no memories remaining of his past life and so I took him into the forest, there is a portal there which only I know of. There used to be more knew about it but I am the only one left now. Other universes can be reached through it. And I decided to send Maxim to another one. This one. It was only three months ago in Ravkan time, but in this universe more than thirty years have passed.”
“Wait… what?!” Billy was pissed. “You… you just threw me into some portal and walked away? Not knowing where I would end up?” “I had to save one of my sons!” she spat out, “…the other one had lost his mind and was on a collision course with disaster!” Billy put his head in his hands, before looking up again and raging at her, “I was abandoned for a second time by the woman I thought was my mother in this universe! She was a drug user, a total mess! I was placed in an orphanage… it was terrible!” He saw a remorseful look pass over her face for a split second, “I am sorry, Maxim! But I had no choice. Then I had to step in again when he…” pointing again at Aleksander, “….was nearly killed by volcras. I managed to get him to the portal before he fully regained consciousness. He thinks it was his idea to leave Ravka after we had an argument, but I managed to plant that idea in his mind before I pushed him into the portal.”
Billy and Aleksander both snorted in unison, then glanced at each other again. Billy looked back at her, “You’re sorry? That doesn’t quite cover it. I went to war! And now I’m in a very bad situation due to things which went down in Afghanistan during that war.” Aleksander chipped in, “And how dare you make a decision like sending me to another universe without consulting me first?”
The sigh Baghra gave echoed round the apartment. “You are a pair of ungrateful whelps! And now it sounds like I have to get you of trouble too!” She pointed at Billy this time. “I firstly had to find some very old documents about it, but I managed to find out how to enter the limbo section of the portal, which this is, because I wished to speak to both of you before I sent you on your next journey.” She lifted her hands and swirled them around in a kind of ritualistic fashion, “Be on your way to the next universe!” she chanted, and suddenly the rippling got even more pronounced.
Billy and Aleksander began feeling overwhelmingly dizzy, feeling as if they were falling but in fact realised they seemed to be rushing through time and space.
»»————————————-———- ⚜ ———————————-————-««
Devon, UK
It was Saturday tomorrow so because you could sleep in a bit as you opened later, you finished the first series (but not the second one - it always upset you) of the one you’d originally been watching, and had then moved on to the one based on the trilogy.
You peered more closely at your TV screen - yeah! you were right, the hot bad guy looked so similar to the hot bad dude in the other series they could be twins! Was it the same actor? You’d need to check on the credits but it must be, surely.
No reflection on the series you were watching, but having finished your ice cream you dozed off during episode 6.
You woke up - you had no idea how much later - and as you sat up slightly, realised that you were feeling very strange. Standing up from the sofa, you were so dizzy that you collapsed back down onto it. You tried not to panic, but you’d no clue as to why you felt so unwell all of a sudden.
Then you noticed that your apartment appeared to be rippling. Rippling??!! What the…. The rippling waves began to die down a little and you were suddenly aware of two looming figures standing over you. Their outlines and features slowly became more defined, more solid, and eventually you realised you were looking up at both the hot bad dudes from the TV.
Of course you were.
Okay, your reeling mind said to you, maybe the celestial Powers That Be had been listening when you were complaining about the lack of hot guys in your town.
They were both looking down at you, clear interest in their eyes. Maybe because you were wearing silky shorts with matching tank T. Your sleepwear didn’t leave too much to the imagination.
So you stared at them, and they stared right back at you, although again you were acutely aware of two sets of very dark eyes roaming all over your body.
You wondered if someone had spiked your ice cream.
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mrzovq3 · 5 months ago
Book!Aleksander Morozova x FemReader
Part 1
word count: 1086
|| this is the first fanfic I’ve ever written so if you have any tips on how I can improve my writing please feel free to tell me also request for future fics are open ||
btw: reader’s an Inferni and this doesn’t actually follow any plot points from the books/ part 1 is just fluff with a bit of kissing 🙃
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You were mere seconds from falling asleep right there, in the middle of a war room meeting. You usually love these types of meetings. Discussing strategy, war plans and studying maps are your area of expertise. But today the saints decided it was an amazing idea to make Vasily come up with another one of his so called “brilliant plans” to help win the war and present it in front of the whole council for approval. You didn’t understand why Nikolai would still let him be a part of anything at court since he was king and could easily exile that idiot with his parents but you guessed Nikolai did it for a reason he always does and you trust his judgment.
Recently there have been stronger fjerdan attacks on northern ravkan borders. More attacks meant more deaths, you couldn’t bear the idea of some of your friends laying in a pool of their own blood. Feeling slightly nauseous, you drove your thoughts to Aleksander. You couldn’t wait to get out of this place, fall sound asleep in his firmly protective and welcoming arms and forget about all your problems, even just for a couple of hours.. You were suddenly pulled out of your daydream by one of the councilmen mentioning your name.
“We can send y/n, from what I heard she’s a skilled spy and powerful Inferni I’m sure she’ll get us enough information to make the next move”
“Good then, we’ll send her tomorrow first thing in the morning,” said Nikolai
“Great so much for relaxing” you muttered
“What was that, Miss Ivanov?” asked Nikolai
“I was simply wondering what exactly my mission consisted of?” you lied, trying not to make it sound as if youhaven’t been listening for the past 30 minutes.
“You will be infiltrating one of the main Fjerdan bases, posing as one of them and getting as much information as you can get on their future plans. There have also been rumours of new fjerdan weaponry emerging in Chernast able to take out more than thirty grisha, that’s where we’ll be sending you. If you find any of those, burn them to the ground, understood?”
“Yes Moi Tsar” you nodded.
“Good, this meeting is over” declared the king.
You waited for everyone to leave until it was only you and your best friend.
“Nik why me, you know he won’t like it?” you whined slumping lazily on his expensive and very comfortable velvet chair.
“I’m sure The Darkling can handle his significant other being gone for two weeks”
“You know what I mean, if he finds out where I’m going he won’t let me leave”
“Ah, if he finds out,” Nikolai said with a pointed look.
“Fine but if something happens to me, he’ll have your head for it” you stated half jokingly, standing up to go back to your chambers where a certain shadow prince’s probably waiting for you.
“Then try to stay alive, I’d like to keep my beautiful head thank you very much”
“As much as I’d love to see that happen, I’ll try my best, goodbye Nik” you exclaimed, leaving the war room and heading to your room.
Opening the door, you noticed your room’s shadows slightly thicker. Used to your boyfriend’s antics, you rolled your eyes taking off your red and blue Kefta and flumped face down on your queen sized bed, letting out a long exhausted sigh.
“You know if you want to surprise me you ought to try harder, you’re losing your touch” you said smiling, slowly turning your head towards the corner of your room as a dark figure emerged from the shadows.
“Oh really? I for one thought it was a great attempt” he responded sarcastically, sitting down next to you. You chuckled and moved closer to lay your head on his lap, gazing into his striking grey eyes suddenly feeling more relaxed. He seemed to notice your tensed demeanour earlier, hopefully he didn’t think much of it.
“Long day?” he asked, furrowing his eyebrows.
“You could say that” you said drifting your eyes away from his so he wouldn’t notice anything strange.
“Was the meeting that boring?” he asked humourly, shifting his legs slightly.
“They came up with a plan to help the war and they needed a skilled Inferni and spy. Thanks to my amazing reputation I got picked, I’ll be leaving for about two weeks. That reminds me I have to pack my bags,” you said getting up, walking towards your wardrobe, trying to look as if you’re rushing so he wouldn’t ask more questions about it, you hate lying to his face.
“You’re hiding something,” he said, grabbing your wrist firmly and spinning you around to look at him.
“Look, Aleksander, I’m not really allowed to talk about it, you already know too much but I promise I’ll be fine It's nothing I can’t handle. You’ve sent me on worst missions anyways, don’t worry.” you lied, locking eyes with him, trying to get him to believe you. He still looked sceptical but brushed it off.
“Ok, be careful.” he said, lifting your chin up with his hand and brushing his beautiful warm lips to yours. You took a step closer, closing the distance looking at them eagerly finally pressing your lips to his. Running your hands through is soft black hair and deepening the kiss, he lifted your hips locking your legs around his torso. For a moment you forgot all about your problems and melted into Aleksander’s warmth and smiled into the kiss. You missed this, spending time with him just the two of you enjoying each other’s presence. Suddenly, he pulled away despite your pouting and leaned his forehead on yours.
“You should probably rest, when are you leaving?” he whispered, still a bit out of breath.
“Tomorrow morning, can we continue now?” you groaned not wanting to stop, leaning back into the kiss. He drew back almost immediately. He carried you to your bed, laying you down and tucking you in like a child. You were too tired to protest.
“Sleep y/n unless you’d rather pass out in the middle of your job” he said, planting a kiss on your brow.
“Fine, but only because I'm actually tired” you yawned, pulling your covers tighter around you. He gave you a ghost of a smile and left closing the door behind him. You let your thoughts run wild until you slowly drifted off to sleep, you have extremely tiring days ahead of you.
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sunny-reys · a month ago
Your Meaning (Part Two)
Someone requested a part two to this Darkling imagine: “Protective Darkling imagine. Reader is a Fabrikator and has doubts about why he would spend so much time with her.”
part one / masterlist
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The sun shines on Os Alta the next morning. To any foreign observer, it would seem like the perfect morning- all clear skies and bright weather. You certainly seem happy enough, walking briskly back to the Materialki laboratories as if nothing could possibly be the matter. If someone were to look a little closer, though, they’d notice the way the others seem to hang back and stare at you, as if you’ve become a celebrity overnight.
You can hear them whispering about you in the workshop all that morning. Their eyes follow you as you stand up to get supplies, as you turn in completed projects. Is it true that she’s- that they’re- that he defended her? Is that really black lining her kefta? You know what that means- it means he likes her. I guess it was true after all.
It only takes an hour or two before someone finally dares confirm the rumors lingering around the room. You’re intent on finishing the latest assignment the Grand Palace has sent your way when you sense that you’re not quite alone at your desk anymore. When you look up, a girl hovers nearby, hands clasped in front of her as if seconds from prayer, although you’re not sure that you’re anything remotely Saintlike anymore.
After a moment, you realize that you recognize her. This is Tatia Marinova, a fellow Durast. She’s given you no reason for ill will, having helped you with various projects over the years you’ve spent at the Little Palace. Now, she looks at you through wide eyes. You raise an eyebrow. “Good morning, Tatia.”
This, apparently, is all she needs to remember why she’s come. Tatia straightens up slightly, tossing her shoulders back. “Good morning to you as well, Y/N.” She considers you a moment longer, as if trying to gather up her courage, and then adds another question in a hurried yet quiet tone. “Is it true that the Darkling helped you? Are you, well, together?”
You can’t help a small smirk. “Yes, it’s true.” That’s all you need to say- Tatia’s eyes go wide and she utters a brief thank-you before scurrying off to her corner of the workshop, where she converses excitedly with a group of her friends. Judging by the way they keep glancing at you, she’s relating everything you did and didn’t say.
Were you a little dramatic with her? Maybe, but you can’t deny that you aren’t having fun. All you have to do is walk around with your black-lined kefta, and it’s as if you’ve just announced your plans to topple the Lantsov regime and rule all of Ravka by Aleksander’s side. Besides, it’s not as if he’s going to hurt anyone other than that one Heartrender, and besides, the guy had it coming.
Regardless, when you fall into your usual habit of staying late after hours in the workshops, you can’t pretend that you aren’t happy to see Aleksander when he finally drops by to walk you back to the Little Palace. His proud look only grows when he notices that you’re wearing the new kefta. “I see you liked my gift?”
You smile through his kiss. “I enjoyed it immensely. Although, I do have words about the other part of it-” Aleksander cuts you off, already knowing about the shadow-scarred corporalnik to which you refer. “That rat had it coming. He insulted you, love, made you doubt me. I can’t have that.” You give him one last suspicious look, although it doesn’t last long. “It was dramatic, certainly. I’ll allow you that.”
He chuckles. “I didn’t think you had a problem with that. The rumors have been circulating all day. I’ve had plenty of time to hear about your remarks to the other Materialki, you know.” You look over at him, surprised. “You heard about that all the way back in the War Room of the Little Palace? I suppose word of that sort of thing travels faster than I thought.”
Aleksander reaches over, clasping your hand between his own to keep it warm. “Oh, most certainly. I hear you confirmed our relationship.” You widen your eyes in mock innocence. “Should I not have?” Aleksander leans forward to press a kiss to your forehead. “I had assumed that if they didn’t know after the kefta and the lingering effects of my talk that corporalnik, they would be fools. You did nothing wrong.”
You grin. “You call that a talk? I’d hate to see what you call an actual war.” This feels good, doesn’t it? Just being able to walk with Aleksander, and make casual jokes as if you’ve been seeing each other for a lot longer than the time you already had. It makes you think that something like this could last.
Aleksander brushes a stray piece of hair away from your face. “Regardless, I’m glad that you’re still here. A part of me worried that you would be afraid of me and what I could do after I took care of the Heartrender.” You frown at him. “Because you threatened him? I knew why, though.” Aleksander sighs. “Many of the people in this country and beyond fear me because all they see is a monster, some wretch of a thing that clings to the shadows. The reason I loved you in the first place was because you saw me as a man, not a beast. By attacking the corporalki, I feared you would lose that trust in me.”
You shake your head firmly. “I know you can destroy cities with a blink of an eye. So could many of the people here. If I wanted to fear you, Aleksander, I would fear you breaking my heart, and seeing as I’ve already done that, I have nothing more to run from.” Something almost like a smile touches on his lips. “That was wise, Y/N.” You grin. “I’m a Durast, aren’t I? We’re supposed to be the scholars to your soldiers.”
Now he smiles in earnest, kissing you again just because he can. “All the same, it means a lot to me. You mean a lot to me.” Despite the chill of a Ravkan night, your heart feels like it has the strength of a wildfire in your chest. “And you mean a lot to me, Aleksander. I’m not leaving you because of your shadows or because others are afraid of me.”
His fingers tap absentmindedly against yours. “I’m glad of that. I’d speak to many more of my Corporalki if necessary, though. I don’t care what they say of Materialki. I’d rather have you than a dozen of the most brutal soldiers.” It’s strange, you know. You have heard so much of the Darkling’s temperament, the look of wrath and rage in the gaze of the Black General just before he kills you. Could this possibly be the same man to which they refer, this man who holds your hand on wintry evenings and whispers lines of love letters in lamp-lit streets?
Maybe he’s right, and you should be afraid of him. He has the ability to hurt you beyond your wildest imagination, even beyond what your talent as a Durast can save you from. However, he has something that no one can match: trust, love, the knowledge that even if he could kill you, he never would. Protection is a rare thing in this world- at any opportunity, you could be killed by enemy soldiers or experimenters or even former friends who wish to get ahead.
Aleksander, though, is different. He knows your strengths, knows you to be a powerful Grisha, yet does not see you as a threat that he must eliminate. He knows your weaknesses, and loves them all the same. It is hard to know, sometimes, how to identify the best things in your life while they’re still there in front of you. Now, however, you know you have your golden days right around you: you have Aleksander, and that is the same as centuries of fortune and prosperity. In the end, he loves you, and you love him. What else could you want more than that?
grishaverse tag list: the other half of our power couple @underc0vercryptid​, @deadreadersociety​, @cameronsails​, @aleksanderwh0r3​, @story-scribbler​
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yesimwriting · 5 months ago
Solace (part 2)
SOLACE (part 2)
A part two but kinda works as a stand alone!!
A/n y’all seemed to like the first one so I thought I’d make a part two :)) This was NOT meant to be a series but now I kind of have an idea to make this a mini series where each part is kind of a blurb that connects to the last part and I think I might do that. 
Pairing: General Kirigan/the Darkling x Heartrender! reader
Summary: The day after you go visit General Kirigan at night is also the day he decides he can become more honest about his intentions for you. The softness of it all is starting to get to you but you have a good friend to remind you that it’s okay to feel happy. 
The sunlight peers into the room shyly. It stirs me awake into a soft bliss. Warmth. When was the last time I woke up feeling so warm? So rested? I squint my eyes open, still calm. But when my vision finally adjusts, I feel like ice all over again. This is not where I’m supposed to be. 
Memories of sneaking here in the darkness of night, speaking to Kirigan so freely, and then letting him convince me to stay. He had seemed to want me here then, in the night when loneliness finds easy prey in even the most hardened individuals...but now, in the morning sunlight--he’ll regret it. We made it clear I’d stay only that night--and that night is now gone. Maybe he expects me to be gone before he rises. I know that’s what most men expect after taking company for the night, but we didn’t exactly partake in activities like that. I think what we did is worse. 
Relations like that are about desire, falling asleep with someone else borders on intimacy. One misstep and who knows what I’ll invoke? I shift my gaze upwards, careful to not move in hopes of not disturbing the arms he’s draped across my back, holding me to him. Kirigan seems different in sleep, softer. His features are still sharp, but there’s something gentle about seeing him vulnerable. Something about the way his lashes brush against his cheeks and his lips stay parted just slightly. This moment can never repeat itself. It can never happen again, so I’ll have to hold onto this. 
Cautiously, I prepare to slip out of his grasp even though it feels like its the only thing tethering me to this world. I touch his first hand, moving it off of me slowly. I wait a second, and when he remains unstirring I move his other hand. 
“What are you so eager for, little wolf?” The raspy, tired quality of his voice leaves my stomach fluttering. His words jar me so much I find myself frozen. 
He reaches lazily, placing an arm on the center of my back, trying to ease me back into place. “It’s morning now.” 
His thumb brushes up and down my back in a way meant to lull me. “I’m the Shadow Summoner, the night lasts as long as I want it to.” He lets out an easy breath, “And I’m prolonging it.” 
Ignoring the warmth the implications of his words bring, I decide to focus on how dramatic he is. “Dramatic even so early in the morning.” 
Kirigan’s eyes flutter open, the slightest smile playing at the edge of his lips. “Watch yourself, little wolf.” There is no malice in his voice, only something hinting at teasing too humane for me to trust. 
I roll my eyes, letting his fingers brush wherever he wants them to--up and down my back, down the arms I am too aware of. The desire to touch him easily, casually, just to prove that I have that privilege. I stretch, pushing down thoughts of rejection as I place a hand on his chest. He pauses, one hand frozen in place on my back. Slowly, he moves his hand away from me. I tense, preparing to retract my hand. He catches my hand before I can pull it away, moving it towards him easily until my hand is against his cheek. 
“Y/n.” He’s called me my name so few times, and the restraint in his voice leaves me unnerved. “Will you wear a black kefta today?” 
His color. Perhaps he meant the promise of solace more literally than I thought. Anyone who sees me will think I’ve been claimed by him in one way or another. Perhaps I have been. The thought stirs my chest, moving me in a way I can’t distinguish as a positive or negative. I feel myself being ensnared in a lovely trap, but when I look at him, at the honesty burning in his gaze, it’s almost as if he’s asking me to claim him. 
“Yes.” Again the word leaves me as if willed by some outside force. 
Kirigan’s intensity dwindles slightly. His hand drops from over mine, but I keep mine on his cheek, running my thumb across his skin. “You’ll do good for me today, little wolf.” His words leave no room for argument. I think speaking like that is a talent of his. “You always do so good for me.” The admiration in his words melt something in me, my entire body warmed in a way I don’t understand. Kirigan brushes his knuckles across my cheek again. 
I’ve been silent for too long, each second I waste inflating his ego. “You’re suspiciously nice in the mornings.” 
“You’re only skeptical because you never let anyone take care of you.” His words are chiding and the implication of them leaves my face warm. “So much promise,” he muses, hand trailing down my jawline, “So much power,” his fingers skim down my neck and across my collarbone. “I wonder what someone like you could do with an amplifier.”
An amplifier. I’ve seen them in use, and knowing what I could do with something that strengthens my already abrasive abilities. I could be a monster so easily. Kirigan must see some of my concern because he’s quick to sit up a little more in order to close the distance between us the way he did last night. He brushes his lips against my collarbone in a way that leaves me distracted by wanting. A wanting for what, I’m not sure. I ease into his touch. 
“Today everyone will know what you are.” His voice is gentle against the base of my neck. “And they will know that we are meant to be equals.” 
I feel the need to panic rise in my chest, but it’s dulled by the warmth his lips leave against my skin. “I’m only a Heartrender, I can’t be your equal.” 
“You are,” he whispers, so assured, “With a heart as good as yours you may even be more.”
His words are too weighted for so early in the morning, but there is always tension with him. Shadows are meant to be weightless but I think they’re like anything else--carry enough of them and eventually you’ll break. 
When he straightens I move to follow him, pressing a quick kiss against his cheek. “You’re good, too.” There has to be goodness in him. No one capable of such warmth and gentleness can be made up entirely of wicked things. 
“You claimed I was a villain.” 
Did my words really impact him so? “My opinion isn’t law.” 
Something strange flickers across his features. “It might as well be.” 
I swallow back a bundle of nerves. “Sometimes I’m wrong.” 
The words crack something vulnerable in me. A part of me thinks he can feel the part of me that’s breaking in hopes of offering him something. 
“You really are my solace.” I don’t know how to reciprocate such a gilded sentiment. 
I rest my head against his shoulder, taking his hand. “I’m glad to be that.” 
He squeezes my hand. “We should go get ready before people start to notice our absence.” 
I consider reminding him what he told me last night, but he has a point. There’s a difference between a rumor of me pacing in the night and both of us showing up late at the same time. Still though, a part of me is already grieving this version of Kirigan. Outside of this room his coldness will return. ‘Just for tonight’. We had agreed on that. But when the night ended, and the morning sun colored us both sane again, he had asked me to wear his color. 
“I’ll go get dressed,” I stay still. 
Kirigan runs his thumb over my knuckles. “I’ll have a black kefta sent to you.”
That has to mean something. Wait--do I want it to mean something? I pull my hand away from his stiffly, standing because I know the longer I’ll wait the worse it will be. “I’ll see you during training.” 
“My door will be unlocked after.” 
At that, my chest swells. He’s offered me an opening. “Good to know.” 
His eyes narrow slightly at my coyness. “Find me after?” 
“Only because you’re nicer in here.” He wants me to come back. 
The black kefta does not feel like my own. The color is too alluring, too dark and enthralling. It is not meant for someone like me. It feels borrowed, but I’m not entirely uncomfortable. It’s almost like he’s still with me, keeping me from being alone. 
When I walk down the halls, I feel the stares of the others sticking to me like tar. They barely tolerated me before--the grisha plucked from the slums after a fateful night in which Kirigan saw the extent of my abilities. 
“New clothes, l/n?” 
Julian’s words coax an easy smile from me. Always so open, so accepting. Even now he doesn’t pester me about the black kefta. “I barely noticed.” 
My lack of real response earns me a playful glare. “Is that the only explanation I get? Moving up the ranks without me?” 
I roll my eyes. He’s joking, but he’s drawing more eyes to me. “I’m not leaving you, Julian.” He’s been too good a friend for me to leave. “Nothing’s changed except the color of my clothing.” 
“Good.” Julian’s lips twitch upwards, offering me the kind of smile that’s earned him many trysts with many women. “I’d miss you too much.” 
And while I doubt that my disappearance would do anything else than up his popularity, I appreciate the sentiment. “Oh I’m sure you’d find a way to find company.” 
He half laughs, “What are you implying of my virtue?”
Laughing, I roll my eyes as we continue to walk down the halls. “You’re not as funny as you think you are.” 
Julian reaches for me, touching my forearm. I stall. “In all seriousness, y/n, I really appreciate your friendship.” 
Aw. Never did I think I’d have so many people to appreciate here. I think of Kirigan, of the vulnerability in his words and the new facet of him I saw last night that I somehow always knew he had in him. He may be a villain, or just one in the making, but he is more than a dark shadow. I find myself releasing I appreciate Kirigan too. It’s different than the way I care about Julian, more fragile, but it’s still a relationship I’ve created here. 
I look down at the space where his hand touches my forearm. “I really appreciate your friendship, too. You’ve gotten me through a lot.”
“You need to give yourself some credit.” He releases my arm, turning to continue to walk forward. 
I turn as well, “You should too.”
 I look forward, and there, in the near distance is Kirigan. He’s staring at me, eyes lacking everything he had earlier. I offer him a small smile. He does not return it, his drops slowly to the ground. Weird. I guess he’s just turning on his indifference for a day of training. He asked me to wear his color, he asked me to come back. 
Does he regret it? Maybe it was a premature request for me to wear his color so publicly. His gaze finds mine again, and with a tilt of his head he gestures for me to follow him.
General taglist: @theincredibledeadlyviper
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countryclubstarkey · 5 months ago
Trust me
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Pairing: The Darkling x female reader
Warnings: Angst, manipulation, making out
Word Count: 957
Summary: Before Alina, there was someone else.
Disclaimer: I do not condone The Darkling’s actions; this is pure fiction.
*This gif does not belong to me and all credit goes to the owner
The mood around the little palace was grim upon The Darkling’s arrival, everyone knowing the foul mood he was going to be in due to his dispute with The King. The king of Ravka has been pushing the Grisha’s and is expecting too much from them. He wants to use the Grisha to gain as much power as possible, but he never rewards them for it. This is what The Darkling has been fighting for years, respect for his Grisha.
This morning, the Corporalki, Etherealki and the Materialki are all on their best behaviour to impress The Darkling and get on his good side; you never saw the appeal of doing that. The Darkling chose his favourites according to how much the person benefits him. However, you can’t blame the people trying to get his attention; The Darkling is captivating in every way possible.
“Did you hear that the king threatened his position?” Zoya asks you while duelling and practising your summoning powers together. Shaking your head at the news, “The King thinks he has him wrapped around his finger, but with one wrist motion, he can end his life.”
“I’ve always wanted to see him do the cut, have you?” she asks, “It was terrifying, to be honest, I thought I would be next, it happened when they caught me escaping, and the Fjierdan soldier tried to kill me,” you tell her. Zoya laughs at the memory that happened a few years ago when you were forced to join the second army.
“Now look where we are; you’re one of the only people he trusts,”
You can’t help but release a chuckle, “he doesn’t trust me; we both know that, and to be honest, I don’t trust him that much either.”
“Seems to me that we have something to talk about, Miss. y/l/n,” a raspy voice spoke up from behind you. Everyone on the training field froze to gaze at The Darkling as he stood tall in his black kefta. Any loss of dignity did not show on him following his conversation with the king. Instead, he looked the same as always; intimidating and powerful.
“I-- didn’t mean it like-” you tried to stutter out; he held his hand out to stop you from embarrassing yourself any further. “Zoya, please find another sparring partner for the rest of the day, y/n, please follow me,” he said calmly.
No matter how hard you tried to keep a calm demeanour in front of everyone, The Darkling always shattered that wall and broke you down.
The walk back to his room was deafening with silence; the only sounds filling the hallways were sounds of your footsteps and shallow breathing.
Stepping inside his room, he motioned to one of the chairs in the corner of the room.
You broke the silence first, “what did you want to talk to me about?”
“Do you like being here?” he asks you, “Excuse me.”
“You have been here for years, but you have never trusted me or my decisions.” You try to stumble out the right words, “Sir, I do trust you.”
“Please call me Aleksander,” he says. Not many people in the little palace or Ravka have the luxury of knowing The Darkling’s real name. You grab hold of his hand, “Aleksander, I do trust you, but you don’t share anything with us, how can I trust you if I don’t know what’s going on.”
He grasps your hand back tightly, looking into your eyes, “I need you to trust me and my decisions at all times because you are one of the only people who knows how I feel. I’ve been feeling alone all my life, and I only want the best for my people, and sometimes those decisions are going to cause harm to others. Everything I do is for the benefit of the Grisha.”
Standing up abruptly, “who are you planning to hurt?” you ask curiously. “No one at the moment, but I need to know that you are supporting me at all times; I cannot have traitors following me,” he speaks out vulnerably.
You gently stroke his cheek, scared of his reaction fearing that you are stepping out of line, “I would never betray you. You have shown and given me everything; I’m finally not afraid of my own shadow.” He nods his head slowly; something unnoticeable becomes present in his eyes. He’s looking at you with eyes full of love, something neither of you has ever experienced. He grasps your face, trapping you with his hands. “Tell me that you trust me; I need this.”
“I trust you,” you breathe out, trying to reassure yourself and him. He leans forward, brushing his lips against yours, making you crave every inch of him. You close the small distance and connect your lips with his feeding your urges. His hands move to your waist, pulling you even closer than before as you both try to cure the loneliness you both have been feeling.
Wandering hands begin moving around your body, trying to feel every inch of you as you both fight for dominance, trying to have some kind of power over the other. There isn’t much of a fight because Aleksander always wins and gets what he wants.
You start to pull away to catch your breath, resting your head against his, “It’s getting late. You should head back to your room.” You nod your head before giving him one last kiss and leaving the room breathless of the events that happened.
Aleksander Morozova rests his head against the door, trying to find the feeling of guilt for lying to you and manipulating your emotions; however, nothing rises because everyone is a pawn in his plan.
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aniqua · 2 months ago
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Mal gif: @dailyshadowandbone​
Aleksander gif: @periodcostumelover​
Baghra gif: @grishagifs​​
Aleksander Morozova x Sun Summoner!reader x Malyen Oretsev
WARNINGS: mention of sex, cussing and vulgar language, angst
SERIES SUMMARY: You have lived isolated from the outside world in a forest for a large portion of your life. One day, a mistake you made causes you to end up with the Darkling wounded in your cottage. Time passes as you both become closer while you nurse him back to health. When it is time for him to return to the Little Palace, you go with him, which puts you on the track of a new part of your life.
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Tell me what you think of this chapter because I had fun writing it.
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“Wear your kefta over this,” Aleksander told you. “Don’t let others see it yet, okay?”
You wanted to believe him, but every part of you wanted to ask him about the stag. Any other time you would have just swallowed your apprehension, but the nightmare of that night was the same as it was the night before. Again, you had to watch the slow consumption of the stag that you killed.
The first thing you did when you shot out of bed in a cold sweat was ready yourself to see Baghra early in the morning. You woke up around the same time that the palace staff would but made sure to be out the door quickly in case Genya decided to wake you a little early or be wondering about the halls.
You let your anxious feet carry you too where you knew the wise woman would be and walked into her space without any warning. She was up drinking from a cup, but it was the first time you had ever seen her without the alert and focus that you always saw in her eyes when she taught you.
“Baghra,” you said, but you had her attention way before you called her name.
“Why have you come here so early in the morning—”
You quickly unbuttoned the top part of your kefta to expose your clavicle area. “Do you know anything about this?” Your voice sounded panicked, and you could not control it.
Her face blanched as soon as she saw what was around your neck. “Where did you get that?”
“General Kirigan and I—”
“Oh, no.” She put down her cup and walked toward you.
“What is it?” you asked, but she kept staring at the antlers in disbelief. “Baghra, what’s wrong?”
“That. That was Morozova’s Stag. He is going to use that against us all.” You could not ignore that fear in her voice. Baghra never expressed anything besides what you perceived as anger, so the wariness in her tone nearly made you not believe that it was her speaking.
You shook your head. “What are you talking about? He told me if we found the stag, I could use it to have more control over my power.”
“You mean ‘he’. He would have more control. He is the one that can control your light now.”
“N-No,” you inhaled and exhaled as you tried to understand what she was talking about, “wait.”
“Listen to me. Kirigan is not the man that you think he is.” She looked past you to make sure no one was listening as she escorted you further inside. “I didn’t think he would do this so soon. I trained you as fast as I could, hoping to tell you once I believed you were strong enough to stand against him. I would have never expected him to find the stag in a thousand years. I went to warn you about him the day before yesterday, but you were gone and now I see why.” She whispered the last part to herself, “He’s been so on edge recently, I should have known something was wrong.”
“This has to be a misunderstanding. Why would he continue the work of a long dead man?”
“Because he is the Black Heretic! My son. He has outlived kings, queens, commoners. Adopting a different name every couple of years. He isn’t a descendent, child. He created the Fold. And this,” she pointed to the stag’s antlers around your neck, “is proof that his plan to use the Fold is coming to fruition.”
“But he said that we were going to get rid of the Fold.”
“‘We?’” she bitterly laughed. “He got to you quicker than the others.” Baghra watched in real time the first-string snap inside of you.
“What?” you whispered.
“Did he tell you how lonely he was. The tale of the boy by the fountain. I’m sure you loved it when he told you that you were going to change the world together.” You witnessed her recite everything you were told in secret.
“Baghra, this isn’t funny.” You shook your head in disbelief as you tried to pick up small pieces of debris from what you built as it was being chipped away.
“Open your eyes. All of it was a lie. Everything that he told you. It was probably easier for him to manipulate a girl who just lost her mother.”
“N-no, no, no.”
“Did you really expect to trust the people of the Little Palace? You thought you made friends and found love here? Remember, there are only three things that Grisha here serve. The monarchy, the darkling, or themselves.”
“Fine.” You let your tower begin to collapse. You swallowed the rock that was growing in your throat. “Let’s say that General Kirigan hasn’t been entirely honest. We have to tell the others. Genya, David—”
“They serve him too. I thought you would have put it together by now. People like Genya were only there for him to keep an eye on you. Everyone in that circle answers to him.”
You felt your eyes beginning to burn, so you bit down on your tongue and clenched your fists.
“You are the Sun Summoner,” she said. You are being watched always. “Hell, the king’s son in the library was no doubt sent here to make sure you stayed in check. Most everyone has ulterior motives in this place.”
“What about you? Why should I believe you then?”
“Don’t take my word for it. Ask Genya where he was the day before you left for the Fold. I’m sure she’d love to tell you about the fire that killed your biological parents.”
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You knew exactly where you were going as you were walking with what felt like rocks in your shoes. You opened the door of your room and saw Genya playing with Dinah just as you thought. You stormed inside without a word and clammy hands.
“Hey,” she sounded cheerful until she saw the expression plastered all over your face.
“What was Kirigan doing the day before I left for the Fold.”
“What was he doing, Genya?”
“What are you talking about?”
You stepped closer to her and said with tight lips, “You said he was on a private mission when I asked if he was entering the Fold with me.”
The Tailor saw the undeniable resolution in your eyes and knew she could not feign ignorance any longer. “He was in Keramzin,” the rock in your throat turned into a boulder, “but I don’t understand why it matters so much.”
“He was in Keramzin looking into me, wasn’t he?”
“Who told you that?” The disingenuous smile on her face fell.
“Does it matter?” You fell silent to give her time to say anything that would make you feel better, but she never spoke. ‘Did he find what he wanted?”
The look on your face had too many emotions mixed into one another, and it made hard for Genya to tell how you were feeling. With this in mind, she still could sense that if she did not tell you the truth, you would have found it another way. “Even though he did not find too much in Keramzin, he still found enough to send some people into Os Alta. They found some things about your family, especially about your mother.”
“What else does he know?”
“The fire, how you were probably adopted, your real last name ‘L/N’”
“You told me to be careful of him, but I should have been more careful of people like you.”
“You don’t understand.”
“No, I don’t.” You laced the words you chose with venom. “I’ll never understand how you can call someone a friend and sit back as everyone takes a piece out of them.”
Genya had never actually seen you angry before, as she took the words you said. “I have to go,” she quietly said as she walked around you and out your door.
You spent most of the morning not moving off the edge of your bed. You never went to combat training or to the library. You watched as time pass you by through the window that led out of the palace and far away from your misery. Maybe it was the afternoon or maybe it was still morning, but there was a knock at the door.
“Come in,” you said coldly.
“Good afternoon,” you heard Aleksander say, but you could not see him because you were no longer facing the door as you were seated on one of your chairs. “I thought you might like these.”
You watched as a small bouquet of irises were placed before you. In any other situation, you would have taken them with a lot of joy, but you did not even accept the gift from his hands.
“Aleksander, is there anything that you have been meaning to tell me?” you asked as you looked ahead.
“I beg your pardon?” he asked, and he gently placed the flowers on the table.
You did not say anything immediately as to control your emotions. It was when you turned to look him in the eyes that the man got a sense of the severity of the conversation. “Tell me it isn’t true.”
He did not need further explanation to know what you were referring to. He heard the beating of his heart increase.
“When were you going to tell me?” you asked.
“When I thought you would be ready to hear me out.”
“So, I didn’t deserve to hear it from you now?”
“All of it would have sounded mad to you.”
“That’s because it is, Aleksander. Using the Fold as a weapon and expanding it?” You got out of your seat.
“This is not me wishing to just obtain power, Y/N”
“If it’s not, then let’s just get rid of it. People have suffered for much too long.” You were nearly begging.
“Have Grisha not suffered longer? Even before its creation,” he implored.
By then, you had made it to the middle of the room and were face to face with him. “Then we’ll talk to the king and—”
“Do you really think he has Grisha’s best interest in mind? No longer having Grisha as a disrespect class would not benefit him. I am trying to help people like us.”
“No,” you shook your head, “this isn’t for us. It was never for us. It’s for you.” You bitterly laughed to yourself. “I can’t believe I didn’t see it. You told me about ‘us’, together, against the Fold because you didn’t actually think I could close it on my own and you never wanted me to.”
“That isn’t true,” he moved closer to you. “I envision us together. You’ve improved so much these past weeks. Your power will be so great.”
“When you’re controlling it. Is this not what the stag was about? Please, tell me I’m wrong.”
“I gave made you an amplifier, but it’ll bring us together in our—”
“Wow.” You looked at him in disbelief. “Your much deeper than you think you are. Not only were you lying to me, but you lie to yourself.” As you spoke, you watched the wrinkles in the general’s forehead grow as he shook his head in denial. “You lured me here telling me that everyone would be so excited to meet the Sun Summoner.”
“My intentions were never to keep you in the dark for so long. You have to trust me when I say this.” He took both of your hands in his as you saw him plead.
“Trust?” you slowly to your hands out of his hold even though it pained you. “I don’t want to hear about trust from the man that went around all of Ravka looking into my history instead of just coming to me first. I would have told you, ya know? I would have told you about how my real mother was a servant to the queen, how my family home was set on fire, and how I was adopted by a widow. All of it. But I guess you didn’t trust me either.”
He watched the second string snap and tears began to line your lower eyelashes. They did not spill until you blinked, but you wiped them away quickly. “I am being honest with you when I say I may have been hesitant with you at first, but as time passed things became different.”
“You just want me to take your word for it? Why? How should I know that you trust me now?” you challenged.
“Because I care about you so deeply. Have I not made that clear?” He tried to reach you again when he cupped your cheek.
You accepted the gesture for a moment. It felt familiar and his hands around you were exactly where you wanted to be, more than anywhere in the world. You would have frozen time to stay as you long as you could where you were, but that was not how the world functioned. You held onto the hand that he brought to your face and the general had thought that he had you back until he saw the look on your face.
“The only thing you made clear was that you found me pretty.” 
What you said made the man instantly begin to regret every time he would stop himself from properly communicating how he felt because of his deep-rooted fears.
You took his hand off your cheek and said, “T-that’s all you cared about, wasn’t it? I get it.” You let out a short but sour laugh as you tried to hold in the tears that were not only lining your eyes but bubbling in your throat. “It was easy. A pretty naïve girl from the woods who just lost her mother is the type of vulnerable girl that’s lets you have sex with her. A decent enough face to look at as you fuck her—!"
“No! That’s not—”
“It’s okay because if she got pregnant, you’d have a weapon under your belt,” your voice faded into a whisper as you tried to catch your breath.
“Y/N! I never have and never would take advantage of you like that.” You tried to listen to his words but started hyperventilating. “Breath,” he took you by both of your shoulders. “Listen to me. Everything I told you about how I feel about you is genuine. I did not have any other motives whenever we spoke by the fountain. I saw you for much more than your appearance.” He paused and tried to choose his words like they were placed in his head. “It’s just that it was hard for me to say, but you mean much more to me than you think you do.”
“Do you say these same things to Zoya when I’m not around?”
“Zoya? She means nothing to me,” he confessed as he earnestly shook his head.
“Like me, right?” You looked down and saw water droplets fall to the floor like it was drizzling in the room. “Saints, how many people have heard this from you.”
Aleksander took his hands off your shoulder and took your cold hands again. “Please, trust me,” he begged.
When you slid your hands out of his again, the general felt like he had fallen from the cloud that he was on and because it was so high in the heavens, the fall hurt more than anything he could have imagined.
“It’s too late for that,” you backed away from him. “I was brought here with the promise of change. I was almost sent to my death in the Fold but instead witnessed the slaughter of Grisha that I wasn’t strong enough to save. I woke up every morning and did everything I was told just to have my hair cut off by the queen. I spent days alone in the forest and in Keramzin. All of that happened just because I was a pawn in this long game of chess you have with the monarchy. Well, I don’t want to be your solution anymore. Forget everything I told you.” You finally swallowed what was collecting in your esophagus. “Forget those ‘overwhelming feeling’ that I never should have told you about.”
Aleksander had not cried in decades, nor had he been on the verge of it in a long time. So, when his throat began to close and his eyes began to feel like they were burning, he thought he was just choking on his own breath. The last words you said to him not only crushed him, but drained all the blood from his face.
“Ah!” The stag’s antlers around your neck sunk deeper into you under your kefta. You flinched and caught herself before you lost balance. Aleksander was already coming toward you upon reflex, but you denied him. “Don’t touch me. J-just p-please, don’t touch me.” As you tried to catch your breath, you did not see him blink away a few tears.
The next thing you said was a request that you thought you would have said much sooner. “I want to go home.”
“I don’t think that that’s possible.”
“Are you going to keep me here?”
“You think I have the final say? The king would never let you go back.”
He was right, and you realized it the moment he said it. Silent tears did not stop running down your face as you turned around from him to grab your cat and lay on your bed, and you hoped the sheets would swallow you whole. Once you curled into bed with Dinah around you, the only thing that would occasionally move is your cat, so Kirigan took it as a signal to leave with a heavy heart. He thought that maybe if he waited to talk to you again after a good night’s rest, then you would not be as distraught as you were.
As the clouds moved across the sky, you laid completely still on your bed as you kept on wishing that he would come back and comfort you while also wishing to never see him again. You thought about so many things, as hours felt like minutes to you. You may have fallen asleep in between some of those thoughts, but you were not sure. 
Once it was time for Grisha to eat dinner, you already knew what you needed to do. You walked through the halls until you were at Mal’s door. You did not even knock and just came in and that was the only sign Mal needed to know that you were not doing well.
He was lying on his bed and reading when you saw him, but when he broke his focus to see who came in, the first thing that came out of his mouth was “are you okay?”
“Mal.” He watched your lips tremble. “He lied to me.”
As he rose from his bed, you brought him into a hug before he could even realize what was happening. Your hold around him tightened once tears began staining one of his shoulders. 
“What happened?” he asked as he tossed his book aside. 
You came out of his arms and tried to speak through chokes and hiccups. “I just wanna go home.”
“Okay. One, two, three. Inhale. One, two, three. Exhale.” He repeated until you finally got a hold of your composure and told him everything.
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Without any more convincing, Mal, you, and Dinah went to Baghra. She knew where to send before you could finish asking. “I thought you’d never come back” was the first thing she said when she saw you.
She took you to a passage that you had never been through to a room that you had seen before. Instead of going into the closet you found, you were led to another tunnel that brought you to the servants’ part of the palace.
“There is a carriage outside this door that usually leaves in the morning for goods. Take it. Run and don’t come back until you’re ready to face him.”
“How will I without you?”
“I’ve shown you the fundamentals. You can go further without me.”
Those were the words that you kept repeating in your head as you just stared at the wood on the lid on of the box that you were hiding in. Mal had Dinah and your bag, so you were left to the torture of your heartbreak. The ride felt short and long at the same time as time bended itself every which way to mock you for your naivete. 
Soon, the ride got bumpier as the trees grew denser. When it was time to go off the path, Mal helped you out, and you walked back to the familiar forest with Dinah in your sack and the reins of a horse around Mal’s hand. You led the rest of the way since he had only been in the general area for the stag.
You both walked in silence in the middle of the night. You listened to the sound of shoes crunching leaves until you saw your cottage in the distance. You would have been much calmer if the door was not opened when you arrived. You broke out into a run and burst through the door.
You thought the first reaction you would have had to the place that you spent most of your childhood in would have been relief or happiness, not at all confusion, sadness, and a bit of anger. Many things were tossed onto the floor. Books were scattered where the tossed chairs were. The candles that used to be spread evenly around the house were either gone or misplaced. You walked through the mess slowly. The bedroom was not worse than the kitchen. Everything in the pantry had been taken and pieces of broken plates were littering the floor. It was your fault for not being back sooner. Travelers had found your home and took what they need.
No one had ever stumbled across your cottage for a reason that you did not understand, so your initial reaction was expected. You held your breath and walked past Mal as he looked at the disaster. You walked through trees, bushes, and rocks until you came across a very small clear area. You sank to your knees and let out the rest of the tears that you did not want to give Aleksander. 
Mal did know where you were going at first, but he was hot on your tail without you realizing it. It was when he saw the bouquet of wilted flowers by a tree that his jaw clenched. 
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After getting as much fixed as he and you could, you both sat on the floor of the center of the house enveloped by a blanket that used to be enormous for you as a kid.
“She told me to leave home and fulfill my responsibility as the Sun Summoner,” you told him in a home that was only lit by the moonlight. “It’s a shame it didn’t work at.”
“I think it will,” Mal replied. He looked different from Aleksander under the moonlight. He did not effortlessly blend into the dark. Instead, he stuck out like a light source. “She was never wrong.”
You stopped looking at Dinah walking about to look at him. Your faces were very close. “I don’t even think I want it to work out anymore,” you confessed.
It could have been the way the moon reflected off his eyes or the years of suppressing your feelings when you were younger, catching up to you, but you began to draw closer to him. He echoed your actions until your lips were hovering over each other with tangible anticipation. You both breath in and out the same cool night air until he closed his eyes and kiss your lips.
You believed that he tasted like all the sweet pastries that you used to give him as a kid. As you continued to kiss him back, Mal’s memories were exploding of every time he had ever seen you smile from when he first met you to present day.
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atlas-of-a-human-soul · 5 months ago
Draw your swords, pt. 11
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Summary: Off on their own with their armies, Y/N’s conflicted mind rests as she meets a new friend while the Darkling is working on finding the Sun Summoner.
Warnings: angst, fluff, sexual references, teensy bit of violence
Part one // Part two // Part three // Part four // Part five // Part six // Part seven // Part eight // Part nine // Part ten    
With his hand on the small of her back, Y/N felt weightless as he gripped her by the waist. She had no time to argue as he pulled her from the horse and on her feet beside him. He didn’t let her fall, steadying her.
“What do you want to do?” He asked, eyes firmly set on her parted lips.
Looking around, she realized an audience gathered. Despite their presence, very few dared to look their way and never before had she seen the impact he had as a general. They tremble when he’s close, even the Grisha tend to avoid eye contact. It was a clear sign of one of two things – utmost respect or paralyzing fear.
“I’ll see to the First army”, she replies quietly. “I want to see what could be done to further help them.”
Licking his lips, he nods. “I look forward to our”, he leans in. Lips brushing her earlobe, he whispered while she held her breath, “Negotiations.”
Flustered, she tried to remain impassive. Allowing him to make her seem agreeable would brand her a traitor to her own people and it would surely get back to her father on the other side of the damned fold.
She desperately wants to believe that her heart isn't wrong about him. Something inside her keeps insisting he's worth every emotion bubbling beneath the surface and no matter how many times she tries to reason with herself, next to him she has no reason at all.
In a way, she's trying to understand him, to see the bigger picture because all she knows of his past paints him out to be the bad guy and she needs him to be anything but because what does make her? If she is capable of loving a man like Aleksander, even if he is evil, what would that make her?
Human, she thought. His wife.
Quickly, he pressed his lips against her temple before leaving. Stunned, she glared at the back of his head and she didn’t need to see his face to know he was very aware of her piercing stare and he was surely smiling.
Turning around, she spotted a blue kefta. “You”, she spoke authoritatively, “Can you please take me to the First army.”
Scoffing, the young woman raised her eyebrow. “I’m no servant.”
Clicking her tongue, Y/N pressed her lips into a thin line. Stepping closer to the woman, she didn’t care how much smaller she seemed next to the stunning Grisha. She raised her chin, demanding respect.
“Do you see the color of the kefta I’m wearing?” Y/N lifts an eyebrow as the woman’s nostrils flare. “I see you understand quite well what that entails”, narrowing her eyes, Y/N kept her gaze fixed on her.
“Using your husband’s name to scare people into obedience will not work on me”, she towered over Y/N intentionally, “Human filth.”
Chuckling dryly, Y/N drew her sword so quickly the Grisha barely had a chance to scream before she felt a cold steel of Y/N’s blade at her throat.
Hardening her gaze, Y/N smirked, “I do not need my husband’s name to command respect and fear”, she pressed the blade slightly until she drew blood, “I’m perfectly capable of doing that on my own.”
“I doubt the General would appreciate you slaughtering one of his Grisha”, she sneered.
Baring her teeth in a cold smile, Y/N raised her eyebrows. “I don’t think you’re aware what he’d do to you if I told him how you’ve disrespected his wife. Cutting your throat would be a mercy, but you’re in luck.” Sheathing her sword, Y/N shrugged, “This kefta would be hard to scrub clean of blood and I simply need a tour guide.”
Grisha she clashed with backed down, aware attacking Y/N would lead to more trouble than she needed. Leading her to the First army tents, she wiped the blood Y/N drew. She threw a few looks in contempt, but Y/N wasn’t bothered.
“What’s your name”, Y/N asked as they stopped at what looked like a clear line between the two armies.
“Why? So you can tattle?”
Licking her bottom lip, Y/N shook her head. “So I know who to call when I need assistance. Your attitude will change either by choice or force. I suggest the first.”
“Zoya”, she responded reluctantly.
Turning her back, Y/N didn’t spare her a second look. She watched the dilapidated tents the First army resided in, their worn out clothes filled with holes where the previous owners took bullets that likely claimed their lives.
Most soldiers were in good spirits, some seemed too affected by the horrors they’ve seen. She felt for them mostly because she was one of them. When she felt like her heart could no longer survive, she laid under the vast blue skies and watched day change into night. That’s when she fell in love with the night skies, the same ones that led her to fall for Aleksander. It’s the one thing that helped her find strength to draw a new breath, to fight so she could once again see the sky is still blue when the morning came.
Turning left, she gasped when a soldier came out of nowhere. He grabbed her by her shoulders, keeping her from falling back as she jumped in fright. She let her guard down and lost focus and if he had not helped her, she’d be on her ass now.
“Thank you”, she smiled breathlessly.
“I’m sorry for scaring you”, he flashed a smile, hands still firmly clasped on her shoulders.
“I should have paid more attention”, she shrugs, hoping he’ll take the cue and unhand her. It didn’t feel right to have another man’s hands on her, no matter how innocent it may be.
Thankfully, he pulled away. His charming smile remained glued to his lips, but it wasn’t nearly as disarming as Aleksander’s. She wondered if anyone could truly rival Aleksander’s smile.
“I haven’t seen you around. You new?”
Raising her eyebrows, she realized no one here truly saw her. She arrived at dusk and was taken to Kirigan immediately. She didn’t meet anyone in the First army on this side of the fold, only a few who managed to survive a two way trip through the fold before the marriage was arranged.
“I”, she paused. If she admitted to being Kirigan’s wife, the soldier would surely put on a mask. He wouldn’t be real with her as he would with one of their own. She needed him to be honest, not fearful. She needed to get a full picture of the state the First army is in if she wanted to improve their living conditions. 
"I'm new”, she confirmed. What’s the harm in bending the truth for a few hours?
“Cool! I’m Mal”, he held out his hand for her to take and she hesitated, looking at it as if it were poison.
Glancing at his faltering smile, she swallowed a growing lump at the back of her throat and shook his hand. “I’m Y/N.”
His eyes widen, “Like the general’s daughter?”
“I’m sure there are plenty of Y/N’s out there”, she looked away awkwardly as he looked her up and down with a growing suspicion.
“Yes, but not ones who’d wear a black kefta”, he shakes his head. “You’re her, aren’t you?”
Frowning, she let out a heavy sigh. “Is that a sign you’re about to run for the hills instead of helping me find a way to make this camp livable for you?”
Swallowing thickly, he looked at her with an unreadable expression on his face. He had a handsome face, gentle eyes who had seen too much war already and a smile she was sure ladies swoon over. Mal looked like someone she could have fallen for had she truly been just a new recruit, but she wasn’t and her heart was already tied to the Darkling. No matter how hard she wished, her life was never meant to be so simple – to fall for a soldier who’d bring her flowers or a heart-shaped rock. Instead, she got a man who could make anyone’s blood run cold with a single look, while she melts under the same gaze.
“It’s been tolerable as of late”, Mal speaks up, “I suppose I can thank you for that?”
Glancing at his bruised jaw, she cleared her throat. “How about you tell me what I can expect on this side of fold?”
The Darkling had different plans while his wife busied herself with the First army. He’d prepared his Grisha to ride into the forest with a single mission – find out the truth about the Sun Summoner.
Finding the Sun Summoner could change everything, the world would be at his feet. He could tell Y/N, but she wasn’t privy to such information. Her duty is to her own people, but he would care for his own just as fiercely.  
At the rate they’re going, Grisha of Ravka would soon die out if nothing’s done to protect them. It was his duty to make sure that doesn’t happen and he’s failed before, but that’s when the Sun Summoner didn’t exist. 
Now? He’d succeed. No one would take this chance from him. No one would persuade him to turn the other cheek when his people are being slaughtered at every step.
No one.
Not even Y/N.
“You should keep a better leash on your wife”, Zoya entered his tent. Disgruntled, she lifts her chin to show her neck. “She nearly decapitated me in the middle of camp!”
Leaning back on his desk, the Darkling raised an eyebrow. “Why would she do that?”
“Because she’s unhinged!” Zoya shouts, throwing her hands up in frustration. “She’s imagined herself to be worth more than Grisha’s lives.”
Clenching his teeth, the Darkling watched Zoya as she slowly made her way toward him. Her eyes filled with lust looked him up and down as if she could remember exactly what lies beneath his kefta.
“Tell me”, he spoke slowly, “What happened?”
Finger under his chin, she leaned dangerously close to his lips. “She mistook me for her servant.” She pushed her leg between his thighs, brushing against his manhood.
“Did she ask you to feed her?” He raised an eyebrow, glancing at her smirking lips.
“She wanted me to take her to the First army and I refused.”
Gripping the back of Zoya’s neck, he grabbed her by the hair and held her close. 
Zoya’s smile widens. He always liked being a little rough in the sheets and she wanted him under her, hopefully the wife would see them too. 
“What did you tell her?” He asked, voice cold.
“I put her in her place”, Zoya’s nose brushed his, but he pulled her back by her hair ever so slightly and she nearly yelped.
“Is that when she drew her sword on you?”
Furrowing her eyebrows, Zoya felt he’s hard. “Is the thought of our last time already getting you hard?”
Grabbing her by the throat with his free hand, he gripped her tightly enough for her to gasp for breath.
“You will never speak to my wife in a way you wouldn’t speak to me”, his voice is gruff, commanding, “Do you understand?!”
Nodding, she nearly falls as he releases her. Gasping for air, she held her throat as her eyes remained on him, wide in a mixture of fear and shock.
“You weren’t getting hard because of me, but because of the thought of her pulling a sword on someone.”
Snorting, he narrowed his eyes at her. This time, he towered over her. “You ever so much as mention my wife again and you’ll find out exactly what happens to those who betray me.”
Grabbing his hand, she tried to stop him from walking away.
He glanced at her hand on his with disgust. Yanking his hand back to his side, his shadows came forth around him. “Never again will you touch me. There’s only one woman with that prerogative and she’s not as forgiving as I am. Next time she might choose to sink her blade a little deeper.”
Clenching her jaw, Zoya stepped back.
“Leave”, the Darkling growled out and she didn’t waste her time convincing him of anything anymore. If there was one thing clear, it’s that the general has changed and it wasn’t for her benefit.
As night fell, Aleksander’s worries started to creep up on him. In all his time, he never truly cared about someone as much as he cared about Y/N. Hearing her talk about the fold and the Black heretic…him, it made him wonder if she’d be receptive of his story.
Would she turn away if he cut himself open and bared his soul for her?
If she knew the truth, would it be the end of their marriage or just the start of something greater?
“General”, Ivan walked in. “Grisha we left at the border came with new information.”
A steady nod on Kirigan’s behalf is Ivan’s confirmation to lead them inside. It would be best to handle it quickly, before Y/N returns. The last thing he wanted is to have his wife recount the events that nearly killed her – the events that happened because he let her down. 
He would never make that mistake again.
“What do you have for me?” He leaned back on his desk, his right hand wrapped around the wrist of his left one.
“The Fjerdans we caught gave us no answer on why they took your wife.”
Raising his eyebrow, his gaze darkens. “Your information is that you have no information?” He spoke slowly, each word gruffer than the one before.
“No”, one of them steps closer. “It’s not about what we gathered from the Fjerdans. At least not the living ones.”
Narrowing his eyes, his jaw set, Kirigan waited for his Grisha to continue.
“It’s about the bodies left in the forest.”
“And?” Kirigan was slowly losing patience. If Y/N returned to find them in a meeting, he’d cut someone in half.
“When we were putting their heads on spikes as instructed, we realized one of them didn’t die by a sword.”
Ivan stepped in front of the Grisha, having a better understanding of his General and how tedious this conversation must be to him.
“One of their eyes seemed burned to crisp. It’s likely what killed him.”
Fedyor piped in, “Inferni could not have done that.”
“What if the Sun Summoner helped save your wife?” Ivan stated while Kirigan remained quiet.
Was it possible the flash of light that startled him that night was not of a gun or lightning, but the elusive Sun Summoner he’s been looking for?
“Out”, Kirigan turned away. “You know your duties.”
“Ivan”, Y/N’s voice made Kirigan’s heart jump. “Fedyor”, she greeted.
Raising her eyebrows as she watched them leave, she turned to her husband with concern. “Which one of us scared them off?”
Turning to her, he plastered a fake smile upon his lips. “The atrocity of that outfit must have given them quite a shock.” Looking at her uniform, his eyebrows furrowed. “I thought we agreed you’d wear a kefta.”
“I know, but I wanted to see just how bad this thing is”, she sighed as he came closer.
“How am I supposed to protect you when you can’t seem to follow basic rules?”
His voice is strained, tangible anger in every word he spoke. She glances at his hands, realizing they’re fists.
“I just put it on. I promise the kefta was on me until the moment I wanted to enter your tent.”
Turning away, he ran his hand across his face. “You look better in a kefta”, he remarks.
“Does that mean I could wear a blue kefta and you’d still be happy?” She teased him, wanting to provoke the man who was supposedly capable of the darkest of deeds.
Looking at her over his shoulder, he felt as if his teeth would crumble as he gritted them in frustration. “And why not black?”
Shrugging, she sat on the table he was recently leaning against. “Is black not a color only you’re allowed to wear?”
Placing a hand on the table, one at either side of her, he kept his gaze fixed on her small smile. He shouldn’t be there, allowing her to manipulate him like this, but his heart screamed her name and his soul ached for her embrace.
“I’ve laid myself bare for you and all it’s gotten me is heartache. Don’t torture me”, he pleads, meeting her eyes again. “It’s a cruel thing to do, even to someone like me.”
“Someone like you?” She frowns, “A descendant of the Black Heretic?”
“It makes me inherently evil.” His eyes fall to her lips as they form a thin line.
“No one’s inherently evil”, she sighs. “Why do you think he created the fold?” She cups his cheek, thumb grazing his lower lip. 
Aleksander stared at her, uncertain of her motives. “I believe he didn’t mean to create the fold.” Swallowing thickly, he blinked fast. “I believe he and Grisha were persecuted for their power and he lost control when those he cares for were taken from him.”
Her bottom lip quivers, her heart aching. Was this truly the cause? Could she ever truly blame him if that’s what happened? 
No one noticed how guilty he felt when he realized what he had created. No one cared, they only saw his guilt. They ignored his pain while acknowledging the pain he caused. He hated himself, more than any of them did, but no one realized that. 
No one, but her.
I am coming for all the monsters that ever touched him, she thought, for those who mangled his stars into shadows and turned him into a nightmare, she promised. I’ll be theirs.
Wrapping her arms around his neck, she did the same with her legs around his waist. “Kiss me”, she demanded. 
He didn’t need to be asked twice.
Pushing his lips onto hers, captivating them in a kiss brought back their spark and the mutual feeling of lust exploded inside.
Her hands circled around his neck, fingers weaving into his hair with a need to touch him in any way possible. Aleksander’s arms moved down her back, fingers sliding down her spine and she shivers with his caress.
They pull apart and take shaky, shallow breaths. They stare at each other, deep into each other’s eyes. His gaze is full of wonder and love, Y/N’s full of curiosity and passion. They long for each other even when they are together.
Their souls have mated long before they felt the hurricane of emotions that connected them to one another. No matter how much time they have together, the Darkling couldn’t imagine it ever being enough. 
She loves the way he makes her feel. Even the gentle, unexpected graze of his hand on hers is annihilating. That feeling could be absolutely of no importance or it could mean they are meant to walk this life hand in hand. She hoped it was the latter. 
The Darkling leans in first, leaving soft kisses up and down Y/N’s neck. She lets out little whimpers of anticipation, her lips quivering. He works his way back to her tender, smooth lips.
“Aleks”, She whispers against his lips, brushing her nose against his lovingly, her breath fanning his face.
Smiling into the kiss, he rests his forehead on hers. “You’ve never called me that before.”
“Does it bother you?” She leans back to properly see his smile. She was right, Mal’s smile is no match to Aleksander’s.
“I was just surprised”, he chuckles, “You are always so full of surprises.”
Grabbing his kefta, she pulled him in for a kiss and instead of closing his eyes as he usually does, his eyes widen instead.
She is always full of surprises.
“You know”, he pulls away. “You know who I am.”
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flightlessangelwings · 5 months ago
How We Touch, How We Love
The Darkling (General Kirigan) x afab!reader (smut with no pronoun use, no use of y/n)
Word count: 3.3k
Warnings: smut (18+ ONLY), pegging, toys, oral (both receiving), anal sex, edging, sub!Kirigan, soft dom reader, reader is a Fabricator (you’ll see why), I couldn’t resist a “good boy” here, aftercare, porn with feelings 
Notes: So I headcanon the Darkling as a switch, and I’ve been dying to write a pegging fic so the opportunity was perfect! I’m so happy with how this turned out too so I hope y’all like it! Thank you to @we-can-be-himbos​ for beta reading and @the-purity-pen​ for help with the title!
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It was late into the night and the Little Palace was dark and quiet. Everyone but the night guard was sound asleep, but you were wide awake in your lavish room. The moon shone through your windows as you sat at your desk with a sigh. Being the top Fabricator at the palace, you were in high demand, and you always had work to do. But there was a second job that you took on that was just as important to you, if not more. 
You set the project you were working on down onto the table and just as you stood up, a knock at your door called your attention. You grinned to yourself as you crossed the room; there was only one person it could possibly be this late at night, and you were more than ready to welcome into your arms and your bed.
“General,” you greeted him with a sly smile as you opened the door and found the tall, handsome man on the other side. He had foregone his kefta and came to you in his leather jacket and black slacks: a sight that you always enjoyed.
He nodded his head and greeted you with your name as he ducked into the room. You locked the door behind him as you watched him settle himself on your bed as if he belonged there. If anyone were to ask you, you’d say that he did. And if anyone were to ask him, Kirigan would say the same thing.
Normally, his late night encounters started differently than this, but the solemn look in his eyes told you that he needed something different from you tonight. You followed right behind him and sat down next to him on the plush mattress.
“What’s wrong?” you asked as you tugged at his jacket to remove it.
Kirigan let out a heavy sigh as he flopped onto his back, “You know, some days it feels like they don’t listen to a word I say.”
You gave him a sympathetic look as you shifted yourself so that you sat on your knees right behind him. While he vented to you about the troubles and frustrations of his day, you lifted his head to rest in your lap as you played with his hair and rubbed at his scalp.
The stern look that Kirigan had on his face when he first entered your room slowly started to melt away as he let out everything he held in all day. His voice softened and his eyes fluttered shut as you gently massaged his head. The two of you had a unique relationship. Neither of you were even sure how it started at this point, but after some time, you each came to each other for stress release. It was purely physical, at least that’s what you both told yourselves. But neither of you voiced your inner thoughts to the other, and you each let the other believe that it was still a purely physical relationship.
When the general seemed to run out of anger, you knew he was in a better mood, and you leaned down and placed a soft kiss to his forehead before you moved down and placed a deeper one of his lips. Kirigan immediately reached up and cupped your face from below you and parted his lips to deepen the kiss. You moaned against his lips as you pushed your tongue into his mouth and tanged it with his own. As the kiss quickly grew more intense, you felt his grip on you tighten in a sudden desperation.
You broke away and looked into his dark eyes, and a new fire lit up within you. To see him below you like this was a sight that only you were privileged to, and even then it wasn’t something you were blessed with all the time. The needy look on his face gave you an idea, and you kissed him once more before you gave him instructions. 
“Take off your pants,” you ordered in a low voice as you stood up and stripped yourself of your own clothes. You turned your back to him to reach into your dresser drawer, and the shuffle of movement behind you said that he obeyed your command. You made sure not to let your authority over him go to your head, though.
When you turned back around, the sight before you made your breath hitch in your throat. General Kirigan, the Black General, the Darkling, laid spread out on your bed, completely naked on his back, and ready for whatever you had planned for him. His eyes trailed up and down your body as he soaked in the sight of you naked before him as well, and the room felt warmer and warmer the more you both stared at each other. A hunger unlike any other took over both of you, and you knew it would be difficult to take things slow tonight, but it would be well worth it in the end. 
Kirigan’s eyes finally landed on your hand, and he grabbed at the sheets when he realized what you held. Your hand wrapped around a good sized black dildo with purple and silver patterns attached to a silky harness. It was so beautiful, and Kirigan couldn’t take his eyes off of it. And it didn’t escape his notice that you specifically used both of your colors for it. His cock hardened at just the sight in front of him, and the first look in his eyes as he clenched his jaw made you grin. You sauntered over to him until you stood in front of him, with his long legs on either side of you.
“Since you liked it so much last time,” you purred as you stepped into the harness and positioned the dildo, “I made this one special for you Aleksander,” you leaned down and kissed him passionately and he immediately wrapped his long arms around around you, “Scoot to the end of the bed,” you gave him a new order and he obeyed right away.
You placed a soft kiss to the tip of his nose before you kissed your way down the front of his body. You stopped at his chest and flicked one of his nipples with your tongue, which made him groan and gasp as he clawed at your back. While you worked his nipple, you gently rocked your hips so that the dildo rubbed against his hardening cock, and you savored every moan and groan that Kirigan filled the room with. Once you gave the first nipple enough attention, you repeated the action to his other and you rocked your hips even faster until he was fully hard for you.
Kirigan moaned your name in a plea when you broke away and knelt on the floor in front of him. You kissed the skin on his lower stomach before you reached into your nightstand for a bottle of special oil that you kept just for him. After you coated your hand with a generous amount, you wrapped around his cock and pumped a few times before you lowered your hand and gave his ass a firm squeeze.
He arched his back and clutched at the sheets tightly with every move you made. The anticipation for what you were about to do drove him absolutely wild, and he showed it in his reactions to your touches. Kirigan sighed your name when you wrapped your lips around the tip of his cock and took him into your mouth agonizingly slowly. You hummed around him as your jaw opened to take all of him in before you started to suck on his cock.
“Fuck,” Kirigan moaned as he moved one hand to grip at the back of your head while the other held onto the bedsheet for dear life. 
You bobbed your head up and down his length as your oil-covered hand hovered over Kirigan’s ass. This wasn’t your first time doing this, but you knew to still take it slow as you poked at his entrance with your index finger. His hole tightened involuntarily as you carefully pushed the tip in and you sucked on his cock harder to help ease the initial pain.
“Relax baby,” you spoke softly as you broke off his length for a moment, “Let me take care of you.”
He lifted his head to meet your gaze for a moment, and when he saw the look of pure adoration there, Kirigan moaned your name and dropped his head back down. He shifted his legs to spread himself wider for you and took several deep breaths to try and will himself to relax his muscles. The sight made you clench your thighs together as you felt a wave of arousal rush through you. But your own pleasure would wait, and you were more than ok with delaying it for yourself for now.
“Good boy,” you spoke in a low, sensual tone before you took his cock into your mouth once more and slowly pushed your finger inside his body at the same time.
A string of both curses and praises flowed from Kirigan’s lips as his senses felt completely overwhelmed in the best way possible. You kept a slow and steady rhythm as you pumped your finger in and out for a time before you carefully added a second. Kirigan’s breath caught in his throat as he almost ripped the sheets with how tightly he held onto them. It was agony and bliss all mixed together, and he loved every moment of it.
You swirled your tongue around his cock as you picked up the pace with your fingers and savored every sound Kirigan made for you. You hummed around him, and you genuinely got pleasure yourself from giving him such pleasure. It was a feeling that you never had before, and you never wanted that feeling to go away. As Kirigan writhed before you, you added a third finger and twisted your wrist around to reach new spots inside him and he almost screamed in bliss. A low moan of your own escaped your lips at how Kirigan writhed for you and you rocked your hips unconsciously in an attempt for some friction for yourself. 
His hips rocked against you as he found his rhythm with your mouth and fingers. Sweat lined his brow as his hair fell in every direction, but Kirigan didn’t care. All he cared about was how amazing you made him feel in that moment, and how badly he wanted to cum for you. And he knew he wouldn’t last long as he already felt the familiar warmth build within him.
But you knew his body well too, and you also knew that the general was close. You sucked him more as you pumped your fingers harder to get him closer and closer to the release he so desperately chased. But, just as Kirigan was about to cum, you pulled off his cock and stilled your fingers inside him. He let out a loud whine of protest at the sudden loss, but you didn’t leave him hanging for long as you attached your mouth to the inside of his thigh and sucked a deep mark there.
Kirigan breathed your name as you slowly pulled your fingers out of him and moved to suck on his other thigh. You moved your hands to keep his legs parted for you as you bit and sucked two more marks on his other thigh. With a pop, you broke off of his skin and took a moment to admire the marks you left behind on his soft skin. But a plea of your name pulled your attention to Kirigan’s face, and when you saw how desperate he looked, you decided you had teased him enough.
“You ready, baby?” you asked as you stood and pumped the dildo a few times to cover it in oil.
He bit his lip and nodded, his face flushed, “Yes…”
The breathy moan from deep in his chest sent a shiver up your spine, and you let out a groan as you pushed the tip of the dildo into his entrance. Kirigan growled and cried out as you slowly pushed into him, and you watched with bated breath as the toy you made special for him disappeared inside his body. You stayed still for several moments once it was fully sheathed in him, and you gave his cock a few lazy pumps to help ease the discomfort you knew he felt.
“Move,” Kirigan begged in a low voice through gritted teeth, “Please…” he added in a softer tone.
Between the way he begged and the look in his dark eyes, you couldn’t deny his request. You rocked your hips back until the dildo was halfway out and slammed back into him. Kirigan let out a cry of pleasure, and you knew you hit that spot that drove him wild on the first try. You pumped his cock faster as you thrust your hips in the same rhythm.
“Harder… More…”
Kirigan’s groans filled the room as you fucked him harder and faster. You kept one hand around his cock while you ran the other up his chest to grab his pec.  He arched himself into you, desperate for as much contact as he could get. Long legs wrapped around your waist as he pulled you closer to him, and you knew from the way he moaned that he was close again. You rocked your hips faster as you fucked him even harder and you grit your teeth as you continued to work his cock.
Between moans and incoherent babbles, he said your name like a prayer, “Close,” was all you could make out.
You thrust into him harder as you pumped his cock faster, “Cum for me,” you purred.
That was all it took to push the general over the edge. With a low groan and your name on his lips, Kirigan came hard and his seed spilled and splashed onto both of your bodies. His entire body trembled as you rode out his powerful orgasm until he had nothing left to give. You whispered praises for him as you slowed down and came to a stop, but you kept the toy buried in him for several moments. You just wanted to savor the sight before you: the black general, a whimpering mess before you with his own cum staining his beautiful skin.
You leaned forward and placed a soft kiss to his chest before you stood again and slowly pulled out of him. He hissed at the movement again, and let out a low whine when you pulled out completely and left him empty. His muscles clenched around nothing before he opened his eyes and saw that you slid off the dildo and tossed it onto the nightstand. When you reached out to him to check if he was ok, Kirigan grabbed your arm and pulled you up so that you straddled his waist.
“Aleksander…?” your question was cut off when he yanked you down and locked his lips with yours in a heated kiss.
Kirigan’s hands cupped your ass and gave the flesh there a firm squeeze before he tried to push you to move up again. When you broke away and gave him a questioning look, he clarified, “My face,” was all he said, and you immediately understood.
You let him guide your body as you shimmied up to straddle his face. Kirigan’s arms held your thighs as he kept you in place and pulled you down so that your cunt met his lips. Immediately, he dove in and licked and sucked at you, and was not at all surprised how wet you were already. This time, it was you who moaned and cried out in pleasure as he traced random patterns along your folds with his tongue.
You rocked your hips against Kirigan’s face slightly, but his strong grip held you in place with not much room for movement. His tongue swirled around your clit a few times before he sucked at it, and grinned against you when your thighs tried to close around his head as a reflex. You slumped forward and grabbed onto his hair with one hand while the other reached forward to keep you upright.
Kirigan ran his tongue flat against your pussy until he reached your entrance. He swirled around the ring of muscle before he pushed his tongue inside you. Even after the intense orgasm you gifted him, his cock still twitched at the taste of you. Not to mention the way you cried for him spurred him on like nothing else.
After he thrust in and out of you a few times, Kirigan ran his tongue along your folds again to suck at your clit, and when your cries hit a new pitch, he knew you were close. He sucked and licked at the sensitive spot until he felt your legs tremble on either side of his head.
“Fuck… Aleks…” you couldn’t even finish his name when your orgasm hit you. Waves of pleasure crashed through your whole body as you came hard on his face, and he didn’t stop until he had pulled every ounce of orgasm from your body.
When you couldn’t take anymore, you tapped him twice and Kirigan immediately let you go. With no strength left in your body, you rolled over and collapsed down onto the bed next to him, a sweaty panting mess. The two of you laid in a comfortable silence as you took the opportunity to catch your breaths and recover from such strong climaxes.
You opened your eyes first, and when you saw Kirigan on the bed next to you covered in evidence of both of your releases, your heart skipped a beat. Involuntarily, you bit your lip as you soaked in the sight of him before you. The blissful look on his face told you that he was ok, but you felt it was your responsibility to clean him up this time. With a grunt, you pushed yourself up and crossed the room to the bathroom where you grabbed a cloth. You wet it before you came back and carefully dabbed it against his skin.
Kirigan’s beard glistened as your juices dripped from his lips, but he didn’t seem to care. In fact, he seemed quite satisfied with his current state. His own cum splattered his stomach, and some of it was still stuck to your own skin as well. You cleaned his face first before you gently wiped up his stomach then you cleaned yourself off. Just as you were about to get up off the bed, Kirigan reached out for you and wrapped his strong arms around you and pulled you in close.
You giggled and rolled your eyes playfully, and opted to just toss the cloth in the general direction of your nightstand. That can be taken care of later; for now you just wanted to stay in his arms.
Kirigan nuzzled into your neck as he held you tight. He didn’t say a word, and you thought he was asleep. He breathed heavily against your ear and everything was calm. That was until he whispered softly, “I love you.”
You gasped as you froze, and you thought your heart was about to explode out of your chest. You stayed still, however, and just as you were about to say something, the sound of Kirigan’s soft snoring filled your ear. His body felt heavier against you as the general fell into a deep, relaxed sleep, blissfully unaware of your internal crisis next to him.
After you laid like that for some time, you shifted so that you faced him and wrapped your arms around his waist and held onto him just as tightly as he held onto you. You placed a soft kiss to his chest and listened to the sound of his heartbeat before you whispered, “You're my whole world Aleksander,” you nuzzled against him as you felt sleep start to take you over as well, “I love you too.” 
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wandawxdow · 4 months ago
Relationship Milestones - First Pet Names
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“Hello, handsome, ” you whistled out upon entering the room. Aleksander stood in front of his desk, reading through letters and notably, wearing his new Kefta.
As usual, it was black, his preferred colour. But the garment also had silver embellishments that ran across the fabric in swirls.
“Handsome?” he questioned, standing and stretching to his full height. He shot you a small smirk once noting your blatant attention.
“Mhm, ” you agreed, idly walking towards him, “Very much so.”
You finally reached him, and Aleksander chuckled down at you.
“I’m glad you like it.”
“What are you doing out here, sunshine?”
You spun around and faced Aleksander, seeing him beyond the glare of the sun.
The name warmed your heart, but you didn't want to react, save him shying away.
“Enjoying the weather, ” you grinned back, feeling the green grass against your arms.
Aleksander hovered above you, helping to block out the sun, and looking down quizzically. “While laying down, ” he questioned once more, appeared all too amused.
You propped yourself up onto your elbows for a better angle before shrugging, “I’m soaking up the sun.”
Aleksander didn't respond but lowered himself down next to you, leaning back on his hands and tilting his face into the sunshine.
He hummed, “It is pretty nice, sunshine.”
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agentwhiskeysdarlin · 4 months ago
To Serve the King
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Pairing: Aleksander Kirigan (The Darkling) x Fem!Reader
Rating: NC-17
Warnings: smutty smut times, semi public sex, oral (male receiving), unprotected sex (wrap it up), and well I think General Kirigan comes with his own warning
Word Count: 1,275
Summary: Reader sets out to help her new king relax and he is surprised at what he discovers when she does which leads to some steamy fun on his throne.
Author’s Notes: Well the picture above was posted and right after this idea came to mind. I was kind of glad that something I didn't have to follow any canon for came about first for this man. I am absolutely in love with him (are we surprised?) and I want to write more for him but I just finished the show yesterday and I am only on book two so far. I really hope everyone enjoys this because I enjoyed writing it a lot. Thanks as always to @clint-aww-no-barton​ for being my unofficial/official editor. Feedback is always welcome just don't be mean. If anyone that I put on this taglist want to be removed I will understand! I just went ahead and tagged anyone who I tagged with the Billy fic since its another Ben character. Enjoy!
ao3 link for story 
  He had won. His whole plan had fell into place and now he ruled. You had never left his side, no matter how hard your conscience berated you. You loved him and nothing would ever change that. Unfortunately for the both of you, being on top was not all either of you thought it would be. Having heard his latest meeting with the council had not gone well, you set out with a surprise to try and cheer him up and ease his stress.
You peered around the corner to make sure the throne room was empty. Your whole walk was spent praying to the Saints that no one would catch on to what you were hiding. He still sat in his throne, stress radiating off him, one hand over his face as he rubbed at his temple trying to find some relief. You could tell from your spot by the door that he was tense and it only made you smirk. You padded bare footed across the floor slowly never taking your eyes off him. One of his keftas was wrapped around your figure and you had to bunch it up in your hands on each side to keep from dirtying the precious fabric. 
  Finally he looked up and his eyes widened slightly at the sight in front of him. You only gave him a smile as you walked up the stairs. He moved so both feet were planted on the ground and you kept going until you were crawled up into his lap. A corner of his mouth lifted as a finger came up to brush a piece of your hair behind your ear.
“Well hello there. Who knew that kefta would look so ravishing on you. May have to get them to make you a matching one,” his eyes traced over you.
  “Well thank you,” you spoke softly, seductively.
  Your hands went around his neck and you began to play lightly with the hair at the nape of his neck before you finally brought your lips against his firmly. He let out a sigh, his body relaxing slightly and you scooted forward not leaving much room between you. His hands began to wander as he took you over, his tongue sliding into your mouth to assert his usual dominance and you surrendered knowing better than to resist. Finally his hands slid under the kefta before his movements suddenly stopped dead. His lips slowly fell from yours and he looked at you with shock and amusement.
  “Well my love I was not expecting to find nothing under my kefta,” he almost growled the last words and you smiled proudly.
  “I want to help you relax after such a horrid meeting,” you kept playing with his hair.
Without warning he reached forward and tore the kefta open and you jumped letting out a shocked little yelp. His tongue darting out to lick his lips as he took in your exposed form.
  “You came to serve your King? Then get to it,” he demanded with a curl of his lip, his eyes darkening to the point they almost matched the blackness that surrounded him.
  “Yes Sir,” you spoke the words submissively before crawling off his lap.
  You shrugged the kefta fully off and stepped out of it, before working to get his hardening cock out, dropping to your knees between his legs. You pumped a few times with your hand looking up at him to see his reaction. His hand reached out and laced in your hair before pulling slightly.
  “Come on my love don’t tease your King.”
  You were quick to take him into your mouth. Your hand taking care of what you couldn’t reach as you hollowed out your cheeks and sucked. Your tongue traced over his cock trying to make him feel as good as possible. You started to pull delicious noises from him as you sped up while gazing up at him through your lashes. Never once did you let up until he was pulling you away. You gave him a questioning look.
  “I need you wrapped around me my love,” he pulled you up to him and crashed his lips back to yours.
  His lips trailed across your cheek, to your chin, down your neck and leaving kisses in his wake over every last bit of skin he could reach. You closed your eyes just feeling him before he lifted you again so he could better slide into you. You let out another yelp and a giggle at the movement, before the feel of him deep inside pulled a moan from you. It never mattered how many times the two of you came together, he always filled you so perfectly, like the two of you were made for each other. You perched there for a second taking in the feeling.
  You did as you were ordered and started to bounce on his cock. His hands took ahold of your hips roughly, sure to leave bruises. The sound of your moans and his name falling from your mouth echoed around you and you couldn’t care less if someone came to check. He tilted his head forward and pulled a nipple into his mouth sucking harshly and your hand flew into his hair, your hips faltering slightly. His grip tightened to hold you still while he adjusted slightly, before he started to drive his cock up into you. The noises that came from your mouth were some you had never heard come from yourself. He had never fucked you like this but Saints it was amazing.
  “I’m close,” you whimpered out.
  He reached down skillfully keeping hold of you with one arm and started to circle your clit before you came apart in his arms. Your body trembled and your head flew back in full ecstasy. He was soon to follow and with one last hard thrust as deep as he could go he emptied inside of you letting out a growl. The both of you panted and relaxed into one another for a few moments. Your forehead had fallen to his shoulder as you caught your breath and your wits. He finally lifted your head up gently, his hand on the back of your neck.
  “Thank you for this my love. It truly helped,” he gave you a soft smile before kissing you gently.
  “Of course. I have to keep my King relaxed,” you smirked.
  He pulled out of you and tucked himself back in his pants before standing. He placed you on the ground carefully making sure your knees would hold before he reached down to get the discarded kefta. He wrapped it around your shoulders before his hands came to your cheeks and he gave you one last kiss.
  “Your majesty,” Ivan suddenly called out and the two of you turned.
  “Yes Ivan?”
  “I apologize for um…intruding but we need you in the map room,” Ivan cleared his throat, his face turning so red it matched his kefta.
  “I’ll be there as soon as I escort my Queen back to our chambers.”
  “Yes sir.”
  With that Ivan left and as soon as the door closed the both burst out laughing. It was a rare sound coming from him but you were so happy you got to hear it.
  “I better go before he combusts.”
  “You go on I can get myself back to our room.”
  “You better be naked and waited for me when I get in there. I’m not done with you yet.”
  He pulled you to him again kissing you deeply. The two of you could never get enough of each other.
  “Yes my king.”
Taglist:  @all-art-is-quite-useless​ @whatevermonkey​ @whichdirection​ @pascalisthepunkest​ @all-hallows-evie​ @artsymaddie​ @vvpoisonous​ @not-too-tall-for-trick​ @audreyshepbvrn​ @noushbitesback​
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light-yaers · 5 months ago
Fools in the Darkness: Chapter Three
Darkling x Reader
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Warnings: Death, violence, drugs (Parem), NSFW and sexual content. This content is explicit and 18+ at some points.
A/N: I keep saying to expect a slow down soon and I MEAN IT. I can’t sustain this any longer and to be honest, be ready for fic writing to come to a halt for a few weeks time in the next months-- I have a university dissertation to be writing, but instead I’m doing this! PRIORITIES. Thank you all for reading, fr.
Fic Masterpost
Word Count - 3.6k
Chapter Three
“I thought he was a respectable General,” Inej whispered, finishing the last of her whiskey with a small frown.
“He plays the role well,” You replied sadly, before looking at Brekker. He was deep in thought, a scowl constantly present on his thin lips. “I’m only one person who knows the truth,”
“Then why tell us?” Kaz spoke suddenly. “Why share this with people you’ve just met?”
You took a moment to ponder your reply. Why were you telling the lackies at the Crow Club? The Dregs of the Barrel? Kaz Brekker and his band of un-merry men and women? Growing up in Kerch meant you already knew their names, despite not living in the country for most of your adult life. News travelled fast, especially when it concerned Ketterdam.
Maybe it was intentional that Inej found you that night, wandering the lush establishments at Fifth Harbour and riling up bouncers because of your appearance and obvious lack of kruge—or maybe it’d been fate.
“Why do you believe it?” You asked in return. “Why do you believe the word of a woman you’ve just met?” Kaz’s jaw clenched in response. He looked down at his desk, probably beating himself up over his prior question, even though it was a good one.
“Your Kefta,” Inej spoke up softly. “From afar, it looks like common dress, but up close, behind the mud and dirt, you can see the intricate embroidery,” She raised her tiny hands to your Kefta, placing her fingers on the stitched details—the winding winds of a Squaller, white threads against a deep black.
“You said you weren’t Second Army,” Kaz spoke up once more. “Yet you were in the Little Palace, being trained by the Darkling himself,”
“I never went on an army mission in the many months I was at the Little Palace,” You replied. “I was grateful at first, until I realised it was simply another way for me to eventually trust Kirigan, to worry about him,” Inej frowned at you then, showing you large and caring eyes. Kaz, however—he looked pained.
“But, what about—,”
“Do you wish for me to continue, Mr. Brekker?” You interrupted him, hearing the want and confusion in his voice. He swallowed down his words, forcing his gaze onto your eyes. He nodded once. You smiled slightly, readying yourself. “My sister’s funeral was held two days later...”
The Little Palace, 1 Year Later
The flames licked at her skin at first, until she was a light—bright, a star, burning so ferociously in a way that mimicked her personality when she was alive. Your sister, your last remaining family, the last love of your life.
She was burning. And there was nothing you could do but watch.
The funeral was a silent and small affair, but you hadn’t expected it to be anything more. If you were still out in the cold, harshness of Fjerda, it would have been even smaller than the reception she had at the Little Palace—
You stood on your own, closer to her burning flames. Behind you stood two Inferni; twins, a brother and sister. They looked at your sister solemnly, despite not knowing you or her. Maybe they felt your pain. Maybe they didn’t want to ever feel your pain. Beyond them stood the Heartrender, Ivan, the one who’d put you into a death state two days prior. And finally, behind him—
General Kirigan of the Second Army.
He donned his Kefta today; a menacing black and grey that only emphasised the broadness of his shoulders. His hands were clasped in front of him, his expression blunt and eyes reflecting the raging flames of your sister’s pyre. As much as you didn’t trust him, refused to trust him, he’d put all of this together.
He’d brought her back from those frozen wastelands. He’d arranged for her body to be cleaned and donned with lavish silks. He’d gathered the Inferni to light her pyre, after you’d denied wanting to light it yourself with a torch.
You stayed perfectly still as you watched her burn, too afraid that moving would only cause you to fully break down. You didn’t want that; you didn’t want another reason for those here to look at you oddly. Kirigan strolled forward then, slowly, gently, as you stayed facing the pyre.
“Let us leave you, now,” He whispered into your ear, so close it made you shiver. You nodded once, but not at him; at your sister. Slowly, one by one, the Grisha left you and your sister, until you were completely alone.
You don’t know how long you stayed out in that acre for, watching the acrid smoke rise into the air and the flames begin to die down, searching for her face within piles of ashes.
It was hours, most likely. The sun had been high in the sky when the pyre was lit, but now it was descending down, down, down the horizon, casting a pink glow over the lavishness of the Little Palace grounds.
And then, the fire went out.
The flames dissipated into nothing more than black smoke.
Then, it seemed almost pointless to stay standing there, frozen like a statue and looking at the last remaining substances of who your sister was. You glanced up at the sky for the first time in hours, indulging in the glorious sunset on the last eve of your sister’s presence on this Earth.
You kissed two of your fingers, placing them above the once flaming pyre. It was still incredibly hot, her ashes retaining the heat of the fire. And then, you left. You didn’t cry, you didn’t collapse, you simply walked back to the Little Palace, entered through the main doors, and then stopped—
And when you stopped, you almost couldn’t take it. You almost couldn’t stand the quiet, the air, the feeling of eyes watching you wherever you went, so close to falling to the ground where you stood and just giving up—
General Kirigan’s door clicked open as you stared at the floor. He rounded the corner of the frame, landing his eyes upon your slumped shoulders and laboured breaths. He took a few timid steps forward, but you hadn’t even noticed him yet, not until he cleared his throat.
You flinched immediately, hitting his eyes as a spike of anxiety was rammed through your heart. He’d scared you, and it seemed he knew he had. He frowned at your reaction, stepping forward once more. “It was a beautiful ceremony,”
You didn’t know what to say to him, nor did you have the energy or will to want to speak to the Darkling that stood before you. But there was a part of you that was grateful for his words—for his company amongst the winding corridors and scowling faces of the Grisha here at the Little Palace.
The only thing you were holding onto was Kirigan’s earlier promise.
“Tea?” He spoke again, this time prompting you to scoff involuntarily. You looked at him with an odd expression, one that was trying to work out his motives. From the small glimpses you’d got of Kirigan around other Grisha, you knew it wasn’t customary for the General to share tea with them.
“I could go for something stronger,” You said breathily, though you weren’t being entirely serious. Kirigan didn’t seem to get your joke, however, as he gestured to his chambers.
“Will Ravkan rum suffice?”
You’d lost count at the fifth, or maybe it was the sixth, but it was easy to just keep topping up your glass when Kirigan placed the bottle on the table between you. Sometimes it was him refilling the glasses and sometimes it was you, but neither of you particularly cared.
You were on the brink of being too drunk to stand, too drunk to know what you were saying, but perhaps—too drunk to care. It was the perfect relaxation tactic after the funeral. You’d almost needed this, even if General Kirigan wasn’t the person you’d imagined being sat opposite you.
“Where do you go all day?” You asked, your words not yet slurring, but getting close. “A few Grisha have said it’s unusual for you to attend training,” He smiled at your question, tapping his rum glass.
You’d had one day of training so far, put on hold for the funeral today. Kirigan had attended, but it’d been obvious that other Grisha were on edge by his presence. All except one—a Sqauller like yourself, by the name of Zoya.
“I don’t just oversee training. I’m in charge of many aspects of the army. Tactics, movements, squadrons,” He sipped his drink. “But you already know my reasoning for wanting to shadow your training,”
You nodded once, humming to yourself without realising. You looked at your hands then, twisting them out in front of you and pinpointing the various lines and indents, the length of your fingers, the curve of your nails.
“You didn’t wear your Kefta today,” Kirigan said, almost in a whisper. You flicked your gaze to his eyes. You’d woken that morning to a knock upon your door—a guard had handed you the intricately designed blue Kefta and then left, leaving you almost speechless.
You’d decided against wearing it, however, sticking to your usual clothes of a blouse and woven trousers, kept up with braces.
“I don’t feel like a Squaller yet,” You replied. “Not a proper one,” It was sad, the way that Kirigan looked at you. It almost made you move your gaze away from his deep eyes, but you couldn’t make yourself do it after alcohol was swimming in your system.
“It’s the blue, isn’t it?” He said, and the smile on his lips was an indication of his joke. You reciprocated his expression, feeling a small bubble of giggles in your gut.
“The blue is lovely,” You replied sarcastically, causing a laugh to burst from the General’s lips. You didn’t realise this man could laugh, could chuckle, could—well—feel.
A comfortable silence fluttered over Kirigan’s chambers. This was the second time you’d been in his room. His décor was so much different than the cream and gold walls of the Little Palace itself; with all dark wood furniture and stained walls. In the centre of his office sat a large circular table, topped with a map of the countries. In the middle—the Fold was indicated with an intricate wooden structure, painted a matte black.
You fluttered your eyes around the room, taking everything in. You inhaled, smelling the wooden scent of the furniture and the musty leather of the chair you sat in, mixed with something sweet that resembled an aftershave. You stared at the paintings and skimmed over his trinkets. Everything seemed to suit him perfectly.
When you turned back, the General was already looking at you.
“I’ll commission you a different Kefta design,” He said it so smoothly that you were reminded of the annoyance it had given you before, but with rum running through your veins all you felt was relaxed. “One that’s more suited to you,”
“You don’t have to do that,” You replied, feeling small under his colossal gaze. He smiled at your reddening cheeks.
“A glorious Kefta for a glorious storm summoner,”
Saints, the way he looked at you was almost too much. His eyes skimmed your skin, traversing your jaw, your nose, your lips, before falling back to your wide eyes. He was regarding you openly and you weren’t looking away—you were taking it full on, perhaps spurring him on to continue.
This was just the rum, it had to be. This wasn’t the General Kirigan you’d ever imagined.
Saints, stop.
“I should go,” You said then, rising yourself from the leather armchair. Kirigan copied you, exhaling at the same time he dragged his eyes off of you.
Your goodbye was as unceremonious as the walk back to your chambers. You staggered a few times, needing to clutch onto the spiral staircase for dear life, but by the time you were back at your room, you were ready to fall asleep immediately.
You lay in bed, your eyelids prepped for immediate rest, but your mind wouldn’t be quiet. In fact, it was yelling at you—screaming, crying, pelting you with warnings—
Stay away from General Kirigan. Do not indulge him.
All you could was laugh at your cautious mind, telling it that it was overreacting, before you were drifting off into much needed sleep.
You still didn’t don the Kefta the next day, sliding down to the training courtyard silently, as if hoping that no one would notice you being there. It was useless to want that, however, considering you were a face that Grisha here didn’t recognise, dressed in clothes instead of your respective Kefta.
You stood to the side while everyone gathered, chatting away before the instructor came forward. “Hand to hand combat is just as important as your abilities,” He said bluntly, flicking his eyes around the colourful group. “We’ll focus on that today. On strengthening your hits, your blocks, your stances,”
You almost smiled to yourself—you knew hand to hand combat. Very well, if you said so yourself. Growing up in Novyi Zem, defenceless and out in the open, you’d adapted quickly to being stealthy, as well as having a mean hit. Hand to hand was something you knew better than your own Grisha abilities.
“Get in pairs,” He continued, and that’s when your face dropped. You glanced around helplessly when everyone started pairing off, giggling and chatting and knowing each other after so long. You felt like a sore thumb; someone who wasn’t wanted.
Suddenly, she bombarded before you—Zoya Nazyalensky. She’d made herself known on your first day, most notably with her dirty looks and the scowl on her jaw, but now? She was beaming, smiling so wide and happily that you almost didn’t recognise her. She gripped your bicep excitedly. “Let’s pair up together, two Squaller’s against the World,”
You had a feeling Zoya wasn’t usually this chipper, but you had no choice but to accept her as your partner.
“Zoya,” The instructor prompted. “You and your partner, front and centre,”
Oh. So, that’s what she wanted.
There was no way to back out now, as Zoya dragged you to the centre of the courtyard. She removed herself to stand opposite you, and that’s when her face changed—back to the dirty looks she’d given you before, the obvious dislike and want to crush you just for funzies. You got the feeling that Zoya felt she was the only Squaller worthy for the Little Palace.
You simply had to prove yourself, then, in front of the other Grisha.
“Fight to defend yourselves, not to attack,” The instructor said, his eyes mostly on Zoya. She dipped into a stance and you followed suit.
Saints, please make this fight the least amount of humiliating that it needs to be.
Within seconds, she was moving. Her first swung through the air swiftly, but you jutted your elbow up to stop her forearm, whacking back with all of your force. Zoya gasped from the interruption, but it allowed you to jab your knuckles into her ribs.
You punched forward, hitting her right in her ribs and causing her to stagger back slightly from the hit. Her brows only furrowed more as you continued your back and forth, a hit—a block—a stance—a hit—a block—it was endless and incredibly draining, but the more you fought, the more Zoya became frustrated.
She’d been wanting a quick fight; something to show that she was superior. Little had she known that you were a fighter, more so with your fists than the winds.
You stepped back to the edge of the circle, breathing deeply, arms out in front of you ready to block her hits. Your hair was in your eyeline, the braces of your trousers slipping from your shoulders, but you wouldn’t stop for a second to pull them back up.
Zoya’s cheeks were blotched with colour, her mouth ajar as she inhaled and exhaled deep, long breaths, trying to get oxygen back into her system. You could see the anger creeping onto her face with every second that passed. You were reluctant to storm forward to hit her, knowing that that would give her the blocking advantage, so you stayed put, counting down the seconds until you’d be free of this pointless and embarrassing fight.
At that second, the doors to the Little Palace were pulled open. Zoya and yourself took a few seconds to peer towards the creaking doors, as General Kirigan strolled towards the training session strongly, with a purpose, no hint of a hangover on his stubborn jaw.
Zoya’s face upturned into a smile at his arrival, but you were a few seconds too late at returning to the fight. Zoya’s hands were brought together immediately, summoning her power as you were helplessly bombarded backwards by winds—
You landed on your back with a thud, hearing the subtle laughs and chuckles of the observing Grisha. You didn’t care though; if you cared about every small battle, every time you fell, then you would have died of humiliation by now. You simply got yourself up again, glancing upon the questioning face of Kirigan as he stared at Zoya—
Then you brought your hands together—
And you summoned the storms that you were used to summoning. Maybe it was overkill, as the entire courtyard was encased in circling winds, or maybe it was needed, just to get Grisha like Zoya off of your fucking back. You spurred the winds on, tightening the funnel and tensing your muscles to keep it contained, even if it was large.
Zoya’s hair whipped around her as she watched your storm appear from nothing. Her eyes landed upon your own, sending you a clear and precise message—fear. She’d never seen a storm such a this, not even by her own hand.
“How?” She yelled, frustration laced within her words. But, you weren’t done with her yet.
You attempted a move you’d never done before, summoning the winds to your hands instead of the surrounding courtyard—you struggled against their power, but when you felt confident in your aim and execution, you let them loose.
Winds rushed forward, hitting Zoya directly in her gut and slamming her backwards; just as she’d done to you. She hit the floor harshly, laying there for a few moments as she fought against her winded lungs.
You allowed your storm to dissipate then, flicking your eyes over the shocked faces of the other Grisha, before allowing yourself to land upon the face of General Kirigan—
He was already staring at you, the way he’d done the night before. His lips were curled into a small smile, his eyes peering into yours and only yours, as if he didn’t care about the ruckus that you’d just created during the training session. He looked just as speechless as your fellow Grisha, but with a higher level of understanding and appreciation—
He looked like he’d never tire from seeing you summon these storms.
Zoya curled herself up from the floor painfully, grunting through the discomfort as she forced herself to standing once more. She went to storm forward, her face twisted with red rage, but the instructor came between her and yourself.
“Enough,” He said, eyes skimming over the prying gaze of the General.
“Do that again and I’ll send you above the cloud-line without a parachute,” Zoya threatened openly, but you couldn’t help but smile.
“I don’t think Squaller threats work on other Squallers,” You replied, gaining a few scoffs and huffs from the Grisha who surrounded you. You weren’t expecting one of them to be Kirigan, however, as his gently bobbing chest hit your peripheral. He was silently chuckling, moving his gaze between yourself and Zoya like a tennis match.
Zoya was wounded, that much was obvious. You would have felt bad if she hadn’t effectively asked for it. She’d been looking for a fight, and that’s exactly what she’d got—it wasn’t your fault that you fought better than she thought you would.
Kirigan regarded you then, getting your attention by raising his hand out before him. He motioned you over with two curling fingers. You shot a look at Zoya and the instructor once, before obeying the General’s orders. He tilted his head down as you approached him, keeping his expression light and soft.
“I see you’ve met Zoya,” He said, amusement certainly on his lips. You stared at him bluntly.
“We’re the best of friends. Can’t you tell?” You replied, but you kept your voice quieter. You were all too aware of the prying eyes of the Grisha in the courtyard, muttering to each other as to why the General had made another appearance at training.
He smiled wider, glancing back at the Squaller and then back to you, letting out a small huff of laughter. You were once again astounded that this man could laugh; every time he chuckled or the bob of his shoulders was shown, you found yourself paying too much attention to the boyish way he sounded, the soft curve of his jaw as he was smiling, the carefree way his hands flinched as he chuckled.
“Can you ride?” He asked then, changing the subject. You nodded at him once. “Good. We ride tomorrow, together. I want to show you something,”  
He strolled off then, without giving you a chance to reply. You watched as his arms draped by his sides and his broad shoulders were even broader as they arched across his back. You swallowed to cut off your thoughts, choosing to focus too closely on the sound of your heartbeat beneath your ribs and the subtle ache of your limbs after fighting Zoya, instead.
You watched until the General was back inside the Little Palace, the black glint of his uniform still etched in your peripheral— even when he wasn’t around.
Tag list: @callitdreamland @bxnnywxtts @elleatrixlestrange @stargirl76 @tartiflvtte @musicconversedance @eprilin @luminous-99 @brynthebulldozer @katedrexel @blackbirddaredevil23 @auggie2000 @not-so-quite-human @notawritergettingtherethough @thinkingth0ts @gabbien @tarkanelima-blog @hxgreeves @super-nannai @epistrofh-twn-ypogeiwn-poihtwn @sonnensplitter @fire-in-her-veinz​
Once again, I’m sorry if your tag doesn’t work-- I really don’t know why they don’t work!
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starless-starkov · 4 months ago
𝐔𝐍𝐄𝐗𝐏𝐄𝐂𝐓𝐄𝐃 || the darkling ( part three ½ )
summary: a simple one night stand was all it was meant to be, but the universe obviously decided differently.
pairing: the darkling x reader - slight darklina ( but the darkling not falling for alina )
warnings: body shaming, slut shaming, angst
authors note: English is not my first language! Sorry for any spelling mistakes btw! The reader and darkling’s relationship is going to be slightly similar like Hayley Marshall & Klaus Mikaelson ( she’s the only person the darkling truly fears ) But their relationship will be romantic. Sorry this is short!
tags: @aleksanderwh0r3 @sesamepancakes @poemfreak306 @24-martie
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YOU WERE NOW 3 MONTHS INTO YOUR PREGNANCY AND IT DIDN’T TAKE LONG for the news of pregnancy to spread around the little and grand palace and maybe on the other side of Ravka, Shu Han & Fjerda.
You remember hearing some girl laughing and elders calling you a whore and calling you child a bastard— an abomination. And that resulted you throwing them into a wall giving them more back pain then they already have.
You had now learned the Darkling’s name, Aleksander. Aleksander Morozva. You found out about his past and family— which he told you willingly.
You didn’t judge him for being the Black Heretic. Well not out loud— you were too tired to do so, so you just gave him ‘evil eyes’ in his words and then ignored him, not for his past just because his mere presence aggravated you.
You were now attempting to fall asleep but the room was too bloody hot, and you try harder as you hear the door open, and faintly see a figure by the foot of your bed, which you knew was Aleksander.
“I know you’re awake.” His voice says.
“No, you don’t.” You weakly deny.
His chuckle rings throughout the room as he hesitatingly sits down by the edge of the bed.
“Don’t worry, I couldn’t sleep. It’s like a summer in Shu Han in here.” You tell him with a soft smile, sitting up completely.
He gives you a smile as he then stares in your eyes for moment before clearing his throat, turning his head away.
“I would like Genya, a tailor here, to help you get ready.” He informs, going back to his stern self.
“For what?”
“A celebration— well the King is hosting a gathering and I’m forced to go and must bring a date, so why not you?” He explains.
“You haven’t asked me.” You tease.
He sighs before staring in your eyes again,
“Y/N L/N would you please give me the honour to take you do this extravaganza the King is hosting this evening?” He asks dramatically.
“Fine, but only for the food.” You chuckle.
“And you will wear a black kefta.” He says and immediately leaves the room not giving you a chance to say anything. You huff and attempt to suppress a smile growing on your face.
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YOU HAD JUST FINISHED HAVING A BATH, NOT TRULY COMFORTABLE with idea of being bathed by other people who judge you for your pregnancy.
You had done your hair, which was t quite hard with the powers you have— you were about to get up until you heard a knock on your door.
“Come in!” You shout, the door slams open and in comes in a beautiful red headed girl, she was truly a sight for sore eyes, “Hello.” You say rather nervously.
“Good afternoon.” She responds much softer than you had expected, “You must Y/N, the star summoner. I’m Genya.”
“Nice to meet you, Genya.” You smile. You flinch back in surprise when she goes to touch you and your hand immediately goes to your stomach just in case.
You see a small smile grow on her lips before she explains this is what tailors do. You let out a sigh of embarrassment, before letting her do a job.
“You truly have gorgeous eyelashes.” Genya comments, running a hand over your cheek, delicately.
“Thank you.” You respond with a soft smile, watching her every movement.
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YOU HAD BEEN VERY CAUTIOUS WHEN putting on your black kefta, not wanting it to be too tight on your bump— that was a little visible.
“There all done.” Genya said, with a grin on her face, placing a little hair piece on, she shows you her arm and quirks her eyebrow at you, “Shall we?”
You chuckle and interlock your arms together, walking quietly down the stairs.
“General Kirigan is going to be in love with you when he’s see you!” Genya exclaims.
“That bastard already is.” You tease making both you and Genya laugh.
The both of you arrive where everyone is and the chatter slowly dies down as they spot you, Genya slightly pushes you forward trying to spot him, you glance around the room seeing everyone’s eyes on you until you lock eyes with Aleksander.
Who was already looking at you.
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hqamore · 5 months ago
boreal star ✵ chapter four
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things seemed to be aligning for general kirigan. alina was growing affection for him whilst you were providing him nostalgic comfort. it almost felt like he was invincible. almost.
series genre: romance & angst
series pairing: [past?] aleksander morozova (general kirigan) x reader
word count: 1.8k
warning: a few profanities
note: mind the jumps!
here’s the masterlist
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after david left and their amusement settled, genya prepared alina for the winter fete. alina let out an occasional giggle here and there during their small talk until alina began speaking of general kirigan.
“he’s so easy to talk to, genya,” alina said. “at first, he was intimidating and broody. now, he smiles at me and... i thought mal made me feel special, but aleksander—”
genya faltered, guilt swelling as she was reminded of the intercepted letters. she finished touching up alina’s appearance before closing her tool box. leaning against the table, she sighed.
“alina, i am thrilled you have found some assemblance of happiness with general kirigan. however, the allure of powerful men is not all it seems. yes, they are stars that shine so brightly that you can’t help but fall in love just a little.”
genya took alina’s slow nods as a sign to continue. “but, they also burn faster than any other and, once their light fades, they drag all others into darkness. the sad thing is you can’t escape because you’re already in too deep.”
baffled, the younger grisha shook her head with a small laugh. “why are you telling me this, genya? are you suggesting i be wary of aleksander?”
genya flinched at how the general’s given name fell so casually from alina’s lips. she fidgeted with her fingers, biting her lip. she saw the questioning look on her friend’s face.
“there’s a rumour amongst the servants,” genya said hesitantly, “that general kirigan had a lover in the little palace some years ago.”
alina snorted. “you’re worried i’ll be the jealous lover?”
frustration furrowed genya’s brow. “it’s not that. the rumour—”
“i thought you were above mindless gossip of the queen’s staff, genya,” the sun summoner teased. genya’s patience thinned as alina continued. “i promise i won’t turn into a volcra that harps about—”
“alina! please, this is serious!” the older grisha forced her voice into a harsh whisper.
with round eyes, alina closed her mouth and slouched submissively. genya apologized softly before she spoke. “they said that one of the rooms was occupied, but no one had ever laid eyes on the supposed resident. they began to think it was a ghost story until they heard… noises coming from the room.”
“noises?” the brunette lifted a delicate brow.
“pleasurable noises,” the redhead uncomfortably said. “truth be told, the servants weren’t even supposed to be in that part of the little palace, — it was forbidden — but their curiosity got the better of them. by rare chance, some servants would even catch general kirigan approaching the hall with flowers in hand.”
“so, the general had a clandestine affair with another grisha. case solved.”
genya shook her head. “no grisha, man or woman, evoked any reactions from him.”
“he was probably keeping his emotions in check because of heartrenders,” alina brushed off.
“i highly doubt he could keep up an affair with a grisha in the second army without anyone catching on, alina,” the tailor retorted. “regardless, one day, after it continued for years, the servants heard glass breaking from the room. the next day, general kirigan marched into the room and destroyed it in a fit of rage. afterwards, he ordered servants to replace everything in the room.”
alina gave the redhead an exasperated look. “it was probably his getaway where he… relieved his stress,” she said with a faint blush as her thoughts skewed scandalously.
genya clenched her fists. “they found clothes that weren’t fitted for general kirigan, clothes that were much smaller than anything in general kirigan’s wardrobe.”
as her blush faded, the corners of alina’s lips turned downward. in wavering confidence, she spoke. “but, it’s a rumour, right? the chatter of bored women?”
the older grisha sighed, relenting. “yes, a rumour.”
a bright smile returned to alina as she shot up. “they were probably spinning lies to keep themselves entertained.”
resigned, genya said. “i’m sure you’re right, alina. let’s get you to the fitting room now.”
the two women walked out with linked arms, one feeling excited and another regretful.
you dismissed your escort with a curt nod as you entered the festivities. nobles and grisha alike were mingling, both enjoying the confectioneries. you maneuvered around the crowds with a polite smile until you bumped into your (not so) favorite person, aleksander.
“usually, people part ways for me,” he teased.
ignoring the ache coming from your heart, you rolled your eyes. “oh, i’m sure they do, general. how unfortunate is it that i find myself in your way. please let me rectify it for you right away.”
when he offered his arm, you gave a mocking smile before moving past him. aleksander shook his head amused and followed behind you.
“you know, at one point in time, you would’ve loved being paraded around on my arm.”
“paraded?” you scoffed. “you’re an ass.”
his soft chuckle stirred butterflies in your stomach before you squashed them down. “yet, here you are, promenading with me.”
“you’re stalking me. i’d hardly call that promenading,” you said.
“some nobles might think otherwise.” he nodded towards leering strangers who were gossiping amongst themselves. you groaned as you tried to create noticeable distance between you two. spoiler alert: the halls were too narrow.
you waved your hands in a shooing motion. “aren’t you supposed to be tending to guests? the king and queen, perhaps? you can promenade with them.”
he snorted as the two of you approached the drawing room. “i doubt they’d get off their asses.”
not wanting to greet the royals, you stopped short of the open doors. “well, i believe this is where we part ways, my good sir.”
“are you sure you don’t want to promenade more?” he looked at you pleadingly, making you laugh.
“have fun, aleks,” you sang as you moved toward the corner of the room.
once you were alone, you quickly realized that your exchange with aleks was warmly familiar. you inwardly groaned. plotting his demise, [y/n]. remember? you aren’t here for a reunion.
your eyes trained on aleksander as he spoke to the king and queen. you could tell the queen said something insulting by his tense shoulders. by the time he recovered, it seemed nobles were approaching them. as people talked and passed through, aleksander’s face grew tired until you met eyes.
he glanced at the tsar before rolling his eyes exaggeratedly. you grinned as you twirled your hair in the same fashion as the tsaritsa, mocking her aloof expression. you saw him chuckle before conversations around you died. people turned their heads to the door, causing you to do the same.
walking in the room adorned with a black kefta was miss alina starkov. you couldn’t help but peek at aleksander who looked speechless. you should’ve expected it. she was beyond stunning in her new kefta. you couldn’t help but feel hurt once more by aleksander. dread filled you as they spoke in hushed tones, intimately close.
following her entrance, two inferni began a fire show, exhibiting their control and providing some light entertainment for the guests. when it was over, you noticed another intimate exchange between the… equals. disinterested and bitter, you left the room and made your way to baghra’s alcove.
as people rose, hopeful chatter littered the room before the tsar called for everyone’s attention. “along with the liberation that the sun summoner will bring us, we will also be able to fight and conquer our enemies with our gravity summoner!”
the tsar waited for you to appear, only to be met with silence. he leaned down to aleksander. “where is my gravity summoner?”
despite the small annoyance that bloomed from the king’s possessiveness, he looked at the spot you were at only to find you gone.
“they must’ve retired for the night, moi tsar,” he said.
the king cleared his throat, slightly annoyed. “it seems my new weapon has chosen to get a full night’s rest so they may begin fighting for ravka that much sooner.”
aleksander inwardly scoffed as the nobles nodded and laughed alongside the king. the people (as well as the king and queen) returned to their conversations, leaving him free to go search for you. but, before he could leave, a guard approached him.
“sir, two soldiers have come saying that they found the stag.”
aleksander’s world stopped. “let’s go.”
the guard nodded and left, aleksander following right behind him.
“—and i knocked a tree onto his house. when the villagemen tried to help him, i increased the gravitational pull on it and, essentially, made it impossible to remove. the man gave up and moved across the village.”
baghra smiled as she tended the fire. “it seems, despite the looming threat of experimentation, you still found ways to practice small science.”
you grinned. “of course i did. it’s a part of me and i cannot imagine not practicing.”
behind you, the door swung open as a guard barged in. baghra turned, her amusement fading. “what?”
“someone’s found it.”
the poker clattered on the floor. “that’s impossible,” baghra said.
a bit lost, you interjected. “who’s found what?”
“a tracker from chernast found morozova’s stag.”
your eyes widened in shock as you looked at baghra who seemed grim. “you must bring him here.”
the guard grimaced. “he’s already been taken to see the general.”
a moment of silence passed as a thousand thoughts raced through your mind. if we beat him to it, i could kill it and use it.
you turned to your mentor whose eyes were already on you. “we need to get to it first, baghra. i can kill it first.”
she hesitated before addressing the guard. “you are to bring the tracker here as soon as general kirigan’s done with him.”
the guard nodded, leaving briskly. baghra sighed. “[y/n], you must not kill the stag. protect it at all costs. even if… even if it means you have to kill aleksander.”
standing up abruptly, baghra moved to a bookshelf. she pulled on a book, opening a secret passageway in the wall. she paused. “his time has long since passed as has mine. it will be a mercy killing.”
you stared at your hands, a slight tremble riddling them. you came back thwart his plans, not murder him.
“i’m not a killer, baghra," you stated weakly. "what if i can’t do it?”
the older grisha knelt down and lifted your head. “you can and you will. we both know how it will end if he obtains an amplifier.”
she grabbed a lantern and moved into the passageway. “i will get the sun summoner out of the palace grounds. you deal with the tracker.”
without bothering to wait for your reply, she closed the door and left you with your thoughts.
maybe, you’re condemned to a crueler fate than alina, [y/n]. bound by morality to kill the love of your life.
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taglist (i couldn’t tag the ones in bold! sorry ☹): @kykymyeon @shelivesindaydreamswme @blackbirddaredevil23 @amortentiaaaa @safetyhtom @savannah-elliott @deceivedeer @gloriousmoneyrascalbiscuit @imrann123456 @sarcastic-and-cool @supersouthy @let-love-bleeds-red @rachellovesharry @andwhatofthelight @all-art-is-quite-useless @mixed-imagination @ashdab2611 @aria-grace-scott @multifandom-addict @aleksanderwh0r3 @p3nny4urth0ught5 @kirigansgf @evyiione @theoutsidelandhere​ 
author’s babbles
firstly, thank you all so much for your messages! they inspired me to write this chapter today!
secondly, i was a total numpty and someone asked me to tag them. however, i accidentally pressed ‘answer privately’ and now i have no idea who it was. if that is you, i’m so sorry! pls message/ask me again!
have the most wonderful day, week, month, year, and life! until i write the next chapter :)
continue to chapter five? yes
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sunny-reys · 4 months ago
Time Can Heal (But This Won’t) Chapter Seven: Meet Me
You’ve been a lone demigoddess, daughter of Hecate, ever since your home of Hellas sank beneath the waves centuries ago. You loved the Darkling until he crossed you and you fled the Little Palace. Now you’re disguised as a mere cartographer. Can you face him again, knowing what he’s done?
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Ryevost is good. Ryevost is great. Ryevost is free of dark-clad generals whose eyes seem to know you at every turn, whose shadows linger around your heels as you walk like they remember you even if their master doesn’t. This is exactly why you can’t enjoy Ryevost as you’re sure you ought to- he’s not there, even though that is precisely the reason you left for this town in the first place.
You arrived there after a day or so of traveling, and had barely had time to cool your heels before being flung into the line of fire once more. As an acting officer and bodyguard back in Os Alta, you didn’t need to make that many decisions or have your choices affect that many people. Here, though, the tides have changed. There are countless soldiers and scruffs who need your approval for even so much as reloading their weapon or retreating from the mess halls late at night. It’s a whirlwind of activity, but you’d be lying if you said that you didn’t think of him in between the gusts of orders and directions.
The problem lies in the nights, when you look towards the shadows clustering in the corners of the eaves and know that they have nothing to do with the agate-eyed man who had always had such a tight control over them. Or when you dress in your charcoal gray uniform, drawing up the buttons and trying your utmost to forget the way you’d walked with him in those exact same colors across the grounds so many times over the past few months. Colors were important to him, you knew that. The ash of the oprichniki was so close to his preferred black that you could almost fool yourself into thinking that he might ever consider you an equal.
This, of course, is a lie you tell yourself, a delusion and nothing more. What happened the last time he pretended you to be an equal? He planned to kill you and you had to flee. Now, he’s shown the most emotion and raw need to you in what must be around a century, and all it does is leaden your footsteps as you run again. Nothing is ever quite enough, is it? Not for you, a half goddess who still can’t seem to find her place in a world that is not her own.
You try to ignore everything in the past, forcing yourself to look forward and immerse yourself in the challenges of your new position. There are countless guards and garrisons to be managed, a whole slew of people searching for a word from you. It is a lot, certainly, but it’s not enough to completely distract you. It’s not enough to keep your thoughts from straying to him during lapses of concentration, and it’s not enough to convince you to return to the Little Palace for the Winter Fete, despite an invitation arriving with a black wax seal. Instead, you pretend that there is pressing business that needs your attention still in Ryevost, and watch the ink curl on the parchment as it burns to ash in your meager fireplace.
In the end, you’re glad you didn’t go. There were a few oprichniki who attended the Winter Fete when the palace needed additional security, and they come back telling tales of the way the Darkling looked at Alina while she had summoned, the way she finally permitted herself to wear a black kefta, the way the two of them had snuck off late into the night and no one had seen them since. It would have turned your stomach to see them go off together, and it turns your stomach now to think of how he’s replaced you.
Maybe this causes your mood to fracture into the irritated, and maybe this is why you don’t turn around right away when you sense someone entering your office one cold and bleary morning a day or two after the Fete. It’s an embellishment to call it an office, certainly- it’s hardly more than a glorified coat closet, but it’s a space that’s yours and yours absolutely. You have your back turned as you fish around in a chest of drawers for the proper diagram of the eastern soldiers’ quarters, and you allow yourself the slight discourtesy of not facing your unexpected visitor immediately.
You let your voice echo off of the wall in front of you, carrying back the slight bite of your annoyance back to the transgressor. “Is there a reason that the guards and locked doors didn’t stop you from paying a visit?” The intruder instead laughs, utterly unbothered by your tone. You stiffen instantly, recognizing the gait of the laugh from sunny mornings and the scent of pine sap in the afternoons, the years you’d spent by his side.
When you turn around, it is him indeed, the Darkling come to call upon you. Your eyes widen nonetheless. “Sorry- I thought you were one of the soldiers. They keep bothering me.” The Darkling appears to think this quite the joke, although the smile fades from his face the second he tells you it’s nothing to worry about. “I wouldn’t mind such an admonishment directed towards the soldiers. However, I have come in need of your help.”
You step towards him, diagrams at once forgotten behind you. He pauses briefly before he begins to speak once more, and you cannot help but think of that night in the war room, the things he’d said to try and convince you to stay. Here you are now, gone from him, and here he is, following you back once more. Regardless of the choices you’d made, you’re together again.
When he speaks, his entire being seems wracked by anger. “I need your utmost discretion on this issue. It is for none but us and a few others to know the truth.” You nod once. “I understand.” His face is wan. “Alina Starkov disappeared from the Little Palace on the night of the Winter Fete. I was speaking to her late in the hour, and I was called away from the room for just a minute. When I returned, she was gone, and no one has seen her since.”
You do your best to mask your emotions at this latest turn of events. You heard your oprichniki speak of how the Darkling and Alina slipped away together, and you have your doubts that they were merely talking as he wants you to believe. This sends a spike of resentment spinning through you, but you can’t convince yourself to follow through with it, too worried instead about the fact that Alina- your friend- has vanished. If the Darkling is unable to find her and would turn to you, an otkasat’sya fool, then he must truly be worried for her.
You fold your arms across your chest. “Are there any suspects? Did she seem willing to leave?” Did she know about you, General? Did she find out at last that she was only your prize possession, a mouthpiece to be used and then discarded? Did she flee from you as I did, too? He shakes his head once, the barest streak of a motion in the half-lit room. “She was happy, accepted, and proud of her powers. There were a group of Kerch criminals there too, one going by the name of Kaz Brekker. I have reason to suspect Brekker of kidnapping her.”
You nod. So she hadn’t fled on her own- or, if she did she’d at least had help. It does you no good to dismiss her so readily. “What would you have me do?” He sighs, running a hand over his face. You realize that he looks exhausted, as if he hasn’t let himself rest in a long time, even longer than the few days since the Winter Fete. If you didn’t know better, you’d say he hasn’t slept well in weeks, around the time since you left the Little Palace and traded it for a spot at Ryevost.
“I need you, Y/N. I need your help in tracking her down. These criminals-” He spits out the word as if it’s the foulest of curses- “They will suspect me and my Grisha, but not you. You have a way of twisting your way into people’s hearts, I have no doubt that you can find her. She is your friend, is she not? Would it be too much to ask you to protect her again?” You nod. “I’ve risked my life for her, and I would do it many more times for her. For the Grisha.” You pause, one heartbeat stretching into many. “For you.”
He is quiet for a moment, and you’re sure you’ve said too much. Then he stands up, closing the distance between the two of you until all there is is him and his shadows. His hand closes over yours, fingers brushing over the knuckles as if to make sure you’re still in front of him, alive, breathing, and within his grasp. “I trust you like no other. I am fairly sure that it is a mistake, but I do.” He takes a step back, almost forcing himself to let go of you. “Bring her back to me. Please.”
You hardly dare speak the words lest they come true. “And what if she is not to be found? What if it is too late, and the Fjerdans or Shu Han have intercepted her?” What if she is dead, the body of a Sun Saint disappearing beneath clods of earth? He breathes in slowly, as if measuring his breaths so that she could have a few more. “Then we mourn, and we find a way forward.” A ghost of a smile twitches over his lips. “At the least, it gave me a good excuse to visit you.” It’s a morbid joke, laughing over the possibility of your friend’s death. However, you’ve seen the deaths of countless friends and families, mourned your mother’s death as the last of the Hellenid gods were drained of blood and life. You smile along with him.
You travel with the Darkling for a few miles outside of Ryevost before you split up once more. He and his Grisha will travel on to a nearby city, where they’ve heard rumors of Kaz Brekker and his associates staying for a night or two. You, on the other hand, will continue on into the forest. You can’t explain it, but you swear that something is calling you there, like you can sense Alina’s power whispering to you through the treetops. A Heartrender in your company scoffs at you when she hears you’ll be separating yourself, muttering something about how an otkazat’sya should learn respect and to keep her mouth shut. The Darkling, once he hears of this, speaks in a cool and brutal tone about how he believes that you would only act in Alina’s best interests. She shuts up soon after that.
You speak one last time with him before you go, late in the night when the moon still hangs over the trees and blankets everything with the white snow of moonlight. It reminds you of a night you’d spent talking with him in the ruins of a cracked and broken barn, back when you still thought you’d be leaving the Little Palace after you ensured Alina’s safe journey there. He asks if you think you’ll find her, asks how you’re doing and if you’ll return to the Little Palace soon after this. Your voice trickles off at that, and you manage a ‘maybe’. You can see his gaze fall, but you don’t have time to wonder why he seems so disappointed. You’ll be going by foot, and just before you disappear into the forest he takes your hand once more and makes you promise to be safe. “Come back to me.” He says. You wonder whether you ever truly will.
After a few hours of wandering through the woods, you catch onto the feeling of something foreign. It vaguely reminds you of the way you used to be able to sense your mother’s spells, smell the peppery scent of magic and breathe in the power that surrounded her. It makes the air hum with power, the way the wind would sing with promise whenever the gods walked among the men. It is far more diluted than that, of course, barely a whisper where there was once a symphony, but it is still there. You follow it to a forest near the town, and pause there to get your bearings.
It turns out that you don’t have to wait long- barely half an hour has passed before you hear the sound of distant shouting followed by the crashing of leaves and boughs as a few people make their way haphazardly through the forest. You draw back into the shadows of the trees, watching with a hawk’s eyes until your gaze falls upon the pair of fleeing souls. A boy and a girl, whom you recognize with a smile of relief as Mal and Alina. They’re being pursued by a mixed group of oprichniki and a few Grisha, likely those in the Darkling’s chain of command. This must mean that Alina knows the truth about the Darkling, and is doing her best to outrun him.
As you watch, Alina and Mal run closer and closer to you. They’re across a small clearing from you now, and you watch them turn around with fear as they realize that they’ve run out of cover. Two oprichniki raise their rifles, an Inferni draws her hands together to shoot a blast of fire at them. Alina and Mal look up in horror- there is nowhere to run, no way to avoid this. The bullets fire with a charge of soot, but they have barely escaped their barrels before an oily slick of thick emerald smoke issues up in a circle around Alina and Mal. The forest falls eerily silent, as if it can sense that something is happening that has not happened for a very long time. It is in this silence that a word can be heard very clearly: Ασπίδα. Shield.
The spell races around Alina and Mal, causing bullets to fall to the ground harmlessly and the Inferni’s fire to sputter and die out. She clutches at her hands, but nothing happens. You flick your hands towards them, and the attackers are slammed into the trunks of trees. Their heads loll to their sides as they fall, blood trickling lightly from their unmoving mouths. Alina and Mal turn towards you in unison, unable to stop the horror from reaching their expressions at what you’ve just done.
Alina’s hand rises of its own accord, pointing first at the viridian streaks still retreating into your hands and then at the broken bodies of the attackers behind them. You speak, voice echoing through the still silent forest. “They had to die. I cannot have them spilling my secrets to the Darkling.” Alina’s eyes widen. “Since when have you been able to do that?” You stare at your fingers, the way the last traces of green ink twirl around them. “For centuries.”
Alina’s gaze clears. “You’re-you’re her. The woman he kept talking about. You’re Hecari. But I thought he said you died?” You nod. “He planned to kill me and so I let him think me dead. It was easiest that way.” Sounds start to slowly filter back into the woods, and your head turns abruptly to the side as you hear shouts coming from a nearby town. “You’ve managed to get the oprichniki on your tail, and he won’t be far to follow. We have to go now.”
Mal nods, putting his hand on Alina’s arm to try and convince her to move. “She’s right. It’s not safe here.” Alina glances back at you. “Come with us. We could use some more protection, another sentry.” You let a half smile cross your face. “I was hoping you would say that. I don’t much want to return to him.”
The three of you spend the next few days camping out over the Petrazoi, doing your best to make your way to Tsibeya, where Mal swears he found the stag. You use your powers sparingly, both to avoid the Darkling’s notice and because you can see the fear in Alina and Mal’s eyes when you cast your spells. They trust you, as you’ve known them for so long, but the idea that you’ve kept such an important secret from them is something that will wear on them for a while.
At night, you stand a silent guard, watching the hills and wondering where the Darkling is, if he’s realized that you’ve changed sides and are fighting against him once more. Will he wonder what killed his guards with such powerful surety? Will he suspect that something more is involved in your soul than just a zeal to protect your friends? When he finds out, will he forgive you for telling him such lies? The stars say nothing, just wink over the horizon. If he is out there, waiting for you, you will not know until he lets you see him.
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